Tuesday, June 19, 2012

"Be joyful because it is humanly possible."

Wendell Berry said that, and I think it's wonderful. Here are some of my most recent pockets of joy this past month.

Kate added this great picture of the booth at Armuchee Bluegrass Festival. I love it! What a great weekend!
Ophelia decided to hang out in the bag I was collecting trash in. So cute. Even if she is crabby.
Jared bought us a great little car to save gas! It's ugly as homemade sin, but it drives like a little go cart AND gets 38 MPG! We named her Big Bertha.

We celebrated the first year of Damiao's life this month! Such a wonderful child from a wonderful friend. Check out Heather's website: www.maewares.com.

We went to see The Isaacs in concert a couple of weeks ago. They are an incredibly tight family band with incredible harmonies! They are so talented, even their soundman has won 2 Grammy awards. I didn't even know that was possible.

This is where I get to work. Amazing.

Kate helped me figure out how to paint chevrons on my new curtains!

This little face always makes me smile.

Such wonderful blessings are everywhere if we just open our eyes to them.

I hope y'all have found your own pockets of joy.

I'm putting the store in vacation mode on Wednesday because we're taking a bit of a vacation, so if any of y'all would like to place an order, today is the last day for two weeks! Thanks so much!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

The New Studio!

When Jared and I bought our house, I intended to use our basement as a place to work on my projects so that they wouldn't be spread all over our house. Pretty soon, it looked like an episode of Hoarders. The basement is dark and either really hot or really cold, so I never really used it. The light from the kitchen window was always more inspiring than the cobwebs in the basement, so more often than not, I ended up at the kitchen table with my sewing machine or paint. I very rarely finish a project in one day, so you can imagine how long stuff stayed on the table.

I told y'all the basement was bad.
Upstairs, Jared and I have a guest room that is pretty much just for our siblings to sleep over in and an office where I teach guitar and mandolin lessons and Jared runs his computer business. The problem with this arrangement is that of our two spare rooms, the guest room is larger and our office was pretty small. SUDDENLY I HAD A STROKE OF GENIUS! Let's swap the rooms! 

Jared begrudgingly decided it was a good idea. 

The new space had to have a three-fold purpose. 1. I had to be able to use it to teach lessons. 2. I obviously wanted it to be a creative space that I would actually use. 3. Jared had to be able to use it too. 

I set out cleaning up the basement in order to get my worktable out of there. In the above picture, under the massive pile of junk is a full-sized dining room table that I had Jared alter to make a great work table for me. What's better is that it cost him 5 dollars at a yard sale a few years ago! He cut about 12 or so inches off the back so it's just as long, but not as deep, moved the legs and I painted the top. It turned out awesome!
Jared is a beast.
 The next step in this meant cleaning out both rooms and swapping the important furniture. I ended up selling a desk and a couch and donating a dresser. I also got rid of 7 bags of trash and a jeep load of stuff for Goodwill. I had an extra chest of drawers that I turned into an island for the kitchen. Finally the room was empty enough to put the table in it! Unfortunately, we didn't calculate how we were going to get it in the room and Jared had to take a couple of legs off to get it to fit. But he did it!
How pretty it looks in the new space!
 I started piling everything in the room. It started to look overwhelming again.
What have I done?!
 I managed to fit three bookcases, a giant table, a wash basin stand, a storage cabinet, four chairs and Jared's massive desk all in one room AND it still looks good! I'm so happy! Here are the after pictures!

Every studio needs a gnome!
I'm still sorting and decorating, but I love how it's come together. What's better is that I've actually used the space for several projects already and it's the perfect inspirational space for me. Jared asked me a few nights ago if I was ever leaving this room! It's so wonderful!

One of my favorite parts is the cost. So far, we're in the BLACK 28 dollars. I sold some furniture and we made money! Everything in the room, we already owned and we left the paint as is. I did spend 12 dollars on the paint for the table, but other than that, we spent nothing! 

This is way better than the dark and dreary basement, don't you think?

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

First Annual Crafty Camping Trip!

Success! Originally we were going to spend Friday and Saturday night camping and pack up Sunday morning and come home, but due to new job schedules and a couple of other things, everyone didn't get up there until Saturday, but it was a blast! We tubed the Toccoa River, stuffed our faces with BBQ and other foods that Mama and Daddy made (they were already camping there) as well as smores, took cat naps, watched Men in Black 3 at the Swan Drive-In, and nearly froze to death Saturday night. It was awesome! I'm hoping next time we can get at least 2 days in, but we'll see!  Here's some visual proof!

We were only 5 feet from the water!

Jared was embarrassed by our attempts to put up Kim's tent, but WE WERE TRIUMPHANT!
See? We totally did it!

Kate looks like a woodland nymph hanging out near this tree!

Daddy can cook anything, anytime, anywhere. I grabbed this photo from Mama's facebook page!

Photo courtesy of Katie!

EAT ALL THE BBQ!!! (taken by Katie!)

He's got such a sweet face!

The Swan in Blue Ridge is the best place to catch a movie. A double feature is only 7 bucks a person!

I love these people! From left to right: Chrissie, Kim, Katie, Jared, Me, and Ashley!

Next time, I hope more of our Crafty Day crew can make it! One more shot before I sign off to make everyone totally jealous of our weekend:

Thanks for the photo Kate!

Jared and I have decided we're moving here someday.