Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Encourage ~ free printable!

We are studying a book in our Wednesday Bible Study about the tongue...I'm telling you, it's been week after week of being convicted.  Us girls and our big mouths is just a recipe for disaster!  Tonight was my turn to lead and I really enjoyed spending the extra time this week studying how to use my tongue for good.  One way we studied was to encourage others...this is such an easy thing to do and it doesn't take much time, but if you are like me, it's just not at the top of the priority list often enough.  My goal is to find ways to make 2 people's day brighter and while it doesn't always happen, it sure keeps me more accountable to have a goal.

I printed these off for our group tonight and thought I'd share them with y'all.  You know my love for chevron and I think gray and yellow is such a happy color combo so I thought I'd put all that prettiness to good use to help remind us all to encourage someone today!

{click here}
 Who will you encourage today?

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Top 5 : : Date night

I don't know about you, but I LOVE date night.  I wish we could have a date night every weekend, but our schedule and budget doesn't quite allow for that, but we do try and make it happen as much as possible!  Our date nights used to be so predictable...dinner, movie or mall and always Barnes & Noble.  Hot and sexy, huh? :)   Actually, I still love that go-to date, but recently we've been trying to mix it up a bit and it has been SO fun!  Here goes....

1.  Stay in and cook together.  For a while this did not seem too fun...I mean do what I do every night for 6 people and it's supposed to be romantic?!  BUT if done right, it can be a low-key, enjoyable night in.  Find a new, fun recipe like this one we recently tried {Trey actually cooked this one for me for our anniversary!}.  If your husband is new to the cooking patient and give it time, he'll catch on quicker than you probably think.  This is a great thing to do especially after a busy week of being on the go.

2.  Tennis/Raquetball.  I always get my butt kicked...always.  But I always have fun playing.  Now that our kids are a little older we can take them and let them play on one court and us have another that almost counts as a date. : )  We've played on our own too and it's just great to be outside & having a little healthy competition {if you can call it that}.

3.  Dressing up and hitting the town.  Sometimes it's just fun to get all dolled up and do something special.  This isn't really my thing to do all the time, but I enjoy being able to really celebrate a special occasion  this way.  For my birthday last year, we went to Wolfgang Puck's restaurant at the top of Reunion Tower in Dallas and it was amazing!
It's that tower with the ball on top that you see in every Dallas skyline pic : )
All dressed up ;) I'm not sure where the pics of us while we were out went...

4. Try something new.  Last time we tried out a place here in Dallas called Top Golf.  We had a couple coupons for it so if it was a total bomb, not too much was lost. ; )  It's kind of Par 3 golf game...almost bowling style.  Trey is a pretty good golfer, but I have hardly played since we've been married.  It was a blast and we will definitely be going back!  Being able to try out new things and being ok if the actual activity ends up not really being your thing is part of the fun of it! Maybe it's time to give bowling, shooting or laser tag a try...I know I'm up for the challenge!

5. The go-to date.  It might be routine, but I love it.  A lot of times we get out the coupon book and try a new restaurant which helps keep things fun.  And as long as we end up in Barnes & Noble by the end of the night, I know it'll will be a good time.  There's not much better than the one you love, coffee, and books about whatever your heart desires {for the record, his are sports and fitness and mine are decorating books}.

Maybe my list seems boring to you....SO, I'd love to hear YOUR ideas!  What do you do when your time has come to get out of the house for the night? 

Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter shopping

I know I showed this photo yesterday, but I thought I'd tell you about my Easter clothes shopping this year.  This is the first year I haven't just gone out in the Spring sometimes and found matching outfits for all the kids.  I found it piece by piece {all at amazing prices} since last fall. After reading this book, I am so glad I did it this way...saving money on things like this has allowed us to be able to give more freely when we've seen needs....still have a lot to work to do in this area though so I am in no means patting myself on the back! ; )

It all started when I found Saylor's {on the far left} dress.  It is a Lilly Pulitzer similar to this, but I found it at Salvation Army while furniture shopping for under $5.  I don't like to be a clothes snob {and don't think I am normally, I'll wear whatever as long as I like it}, but sometimes you just can't deny the quality of something...this dress is gorgeous and is definitely going to be passed down to Addison!  Nothing says spring like Lilly Pulitzer so it was a perfect place to start.

Addison's {the baby} dress was found that same day.  It is a Ralph Lauren and the strap was broken on I kindly asked the clerk to take a percentage off and he didn't...but then threw it in the bag {FOR FREE}.  So, yeah, that was one of my luckier shopping trips. ; )

I found Maggie's dress at Once Upon a Child {one of my fave places here in DFW not only to shop for my kids, but to make money on their outgrown clothes and toys}.  It is a swiss dot {I don't think I've talked about my love for swiss dot, but I love it...especially in white!} from Old Navy...i'm guessing I paid about $6 or $7 for it.  She was the only one that needed new church shoes and I picked those up at Once Upon A Child too...brand new Gap sandals for $4.50!

Tag is wearing some hand-me-downs...shorts from Crazy 8's and a white Ralph Lauren oxford I picked up somewhere a while back for cheap.

My clothes are a mix of old and new...Express skirt found for $2 at the best thrift store ever {it's called ARC and it's up by mom in Colorado...great clothes, great prices, and great cause!}, pink ruffle tank picked up at Marshalls last summer for $5, and my gray cardi I wore the day I graduated high school. : )  My shoes I got for Mother's Day last year from Ross....they are Aerosoles {crazy, huh?} and so comfy.  I wear them every time I get a chance!  I picked up my pearl necklace at Forever 21 and added a brooch I already had from Loft.

I hope I didn't bore y'all with these details...maybe I'm the only one that gets excited when I can clothe a family of 6 for as cheap as I did yesterday and make it look like we did NOT just walk out of the Salvation Army! ; )  I think I spent less than $20 on Easter outfits {not including what we already had}.  So exciting to me that it already that has allowed me to be more generous in ways I couldn't have other Easters.

I'll probably be talking more about that book I mentioned's kinda one of those life changers. I'm so excited about how it's changed my perspective on pretty much everything and can't wait to share! 

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Weekend wrap-up

So, I've been a little busy this past week with birthdays, parties, Easter and projects and I thought I'd let you see first hand {in case you didn't believe me...ha!}.

celebrating Saylor's actual birthday with some cool peace sign brownies

peace sign cupcakes {anybody else have an 8 year old girl?? ; ) } for the par-tay with the friends

football cupcakes (we celebrated the 2 birthdays together with their friends)

party time!
my birthday buddies :)

Easter thankful for what this day means!

egg hunt
egg dash  : )

does anyone else ever look at pics of their kids and wonder how they got so stinkin' old?  : (
the loot and a wardrobe malfunction : )
I hope your Easter weekend was enjoyable as well!

I'm so excited to show y'all some projects that I'm working on this week...Stay tuned!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

A Tuesday afternoon in Tuesday Morning

I don't know about y'all but I really have to be in the mood to step foot in a Tuesday Morning.  When I'm in the mood, I think it's great and there are so many treasures to be found, but when I'm not it just seems like a lot of odd stuff piled on shelves with ridiculously small aisles...almost claustrophobic feeling.  Today, I was out shopping for my daughter's birthday {Happy 8th birthday, Saylor!} and was having horrible luck so I thought I'd give it a try.  I'm not sure if it was the fact that I was kidless going in or maybe the mood was right, but I found lots of great things.
I'm still dreaming about this AMAZING sunburst mirror {reg. $350, at Tuesday Morning for $79.99}.  I'm gonna have this one on the brain for quite a while...

I thought the lines of this side table were so classic...I think it was about $100.

This would not be right for my house, because it would always have finger prints or "raspberry" marks...but it was regular over $600, down to $250 and I think it could totally make a space

Loved these mercury glass jars...priced well, starting at $15

I actually picked up one of these Waverly outdoor pillows...unfortunately, it's not going to work out in my space, but at $15 it was worth a try!  {I got the blue/orange floral one at the very top of the pic}  I love bringing outdoor fabrics durable for families with little kids!

Bad pic, I know, but here's what I did come away with...this pair of pink crystal "s" earbuds and a pink iPod case....I got both for under $15!  

What do y'all think about Tuesday Morning...worth the time it takes to "treasure hunt" or a headache waiting to happen? :) I came away pretty impressed actually...I'd like to try to remember and make it a regular stop for when I'm on a hunt because I think you can find some pretty unique {and expensive} pieces for a great price!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Giveaway winner, birthday banner and other happenings....

This is going to be a bit of a random post....buckle up! ; )

First, the giveaway winner is..... #7 Marsha Jackson.  Didn't rig this's her number...

If you didn't win, the sale for my readers is still going on through April 26 (free necklace with bag).  You can still shop here.  This is a great deal and I hope with Mother's Day just around the corner, you can take advantage of this awesome sale!

Second, this is birthday month in our household.  We have 2 birthdays within 8 days {it would have been 3, but the baby thought she'd come 10 weeks early and throw us all for a loop....I think she may have just wanted her own month to celebrate her special day : ) }.  Anyway, it's a little crazy, but SO fun.  Last Monday was our son Tag's 6th birthday and my older girls made this sweet sign for him...not only do I love seeing their creative juices flowing, I love seeing them being thoughtful on their own!

They used some leftover tea-dyed coffee filters I had from another project and made a design on each of them. Then they strung them up with a ribbon and we hung it in the kitchen.  For a FREE project, I'd say this turned out pretty cute.  The possibilities are endless with it too!

Third, I thought I'd let you know about a great couple that is adopting a sweet baby boy from Ethiopia.  I'm sure as y'all know the costs of adoption are astronomical, so they are having an online auction on their blog with some great items to help with their costs.  I know this couple personally (my husband went to high school with them, so if you are in the DFW area you may know them too!) and know that they will be great  Christian parents.  I bid on a few things I thought would be great Mother's Day I could kill to birds with one stone! ; ) There's also some Father's Day ideas too.... just check it out....but if you see my name bidding, you can keep shopping...ha, kidding! ; )  Here's their website where you can read their story and see their auction items.  Happy bidding!  All auctions end this Saturday (4/23).

I hope everyone had a great weekend.  Ours was great, but I am in recovery mode! ; )

Friday, April 15, 2011

Mantels & Moss

I love the look of moss and how no matter what it's on, it brings the beauty of the outdoors in.  I've seen a couple different versions of moss covered letters and my initial plan was to make an "O" to hang on our front door {and I still may} but I had another "O", which would be too small on our door, from a project gone bad I thought I'd try out first.  So here's what I did to make my moss-covered letter...

I started with this cheesy silver painted "O" {MDF purchased at Hobby Lobby for less than $2}

Painted it green so that tacky silver wouldn't be peaking through after I applied the moss {just some random paint I had laying around}.
Then, I used a paintbrush and applied some Modge Podge liberally.  Spray adhesive probably would work easier, but I wanted to keep the cost of this little project as low as possible...and Modge Podge was already in my craft bucket : ) }

The moss {purchased from Wal-mart for less than $2} was a little tricky to put on and it took a couple rounds of it to make sure I filled in all the holes.  

Between coats I wrapped it up in an old towel tightly, turned it upside down and put a heavy stepping stone {once again, it was all I had and it was heavy...and within reach! }.  This helped tame the craziness of the resembled some really bad bed head. : )

Now, here it is on my newly redone mantel {sorry about the not-great pics, they are from my phone because my camera is MIA  : ( }...

I think I'm really liking my new map "collection".  I think it picks up the neutrals and the blues in this room really well while be interesting and showing off some of my new favorite things.  The one hanging is from's an antique map of France that he gave me for Christmas.  I've been to France before, but I'd really want to go back with him....someday. ; )  The globe I mentioned in one of my thrifting posts. The other map my mom made WAY back in the day and came home with me from our Spring Break trip.  Not only do I love the looks of it, I LOVE that it was handmade by my mom.  Here it is back in the day....

Same map in the background {nice picture grouping, mom! : ) }....Oh yeah and my 3 cute older siblings. ; )

Don't forget to enter the necklace ends at midnight on Sunday!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Chandy makeover

Does anybody else have this in their house?  It seems like almost every other house I'm in has this same "brass beauty"...when we first moved in, I knew I had to take matters into my own hands to rid our house of it.  This may have been when my love of spray paint first happened.  I came across this hammered textured spray paint {I think I just picked mine up at Wal-Mart for about $5} and I love the texture it adds to the metal.

I just took the bulbs out and taped everything I didn't want painted.  I left it hanging up there and just put a drop cloth under me and used a piece of paper behind where I was painting to catch the rest.  And yes, my hands were black by the end. ; )

And the results....

Since this room is about to be redone this chandelier may be getting another makeover {maybe gray??}, but for right now, I'm loving the tranformation that just a can of spray paint  {yet again} has did not only to this light fixture, but the entire room.

This is one of those ideas that could be used in so many different ways and if you don't have a "brass beauty", they are on Craig's List and at yard sales all the time.  It would be cute painted white or light pink with some crystals hung from it for a girl's room.  Or you could even do a fun color to add a splash of color and whimsy to any room.  A black one would also look great in a teen's room with some black/white zebra print or with a bold brocade print.

Anybody else have one of these "brass beauties" they need a quick fix for?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


All right, I told you I had some great giveaways planned and I'm so excited about this one!  My sister-in-law has just joined this great new company called Halle Joy.

"Halle Joy is a different type of company, committed not only to designing beautiful products, but to bringing joy to people throughout the world. A portion of the proceeds from every piece we sell goes to support worthy causes around the world. You can choose your favorite cause at checkout." {taken from their website}  Those causes include water, food, orphans, medicine and disaster relief.  I don't know about you, but in light of the recent disaster in Japan, it's great to be able to give back in any way possible.  It's pretty cool you can give back while purchasing some great jewelry and handbags!  Here are some on my faves...
Guardian Necklace, I love this interchangeable necklace...the chain is gorgeous too!
Giraffe Medium Knotted Tote, love this great giraffe print bag
Flowers of Love necklace in black, the black and silver look so pretty on this necklace
Flowers of Love earrings in gold, I could see these being everyday earrings...they come in black, gold or white and silver and coordinate with the necklace above.
Heart of Love Messenger, how fun is this print?  Messenger bags are SO practical!
Assurance Necklace, another piece I could see wearing almost every day
Pearls of Wisdom in Pearl...a light tan that would coordinate with so much
Heart of Love tote, black and white is always the tote style

The GIVEAWAY is for this gorgeous black/brown pearl necklace that retails for $29.  This necklace is from the Colors of Heaven collection and could be such a staple piece for any wardrobe.  I've always loved black pearls...isn't it beautiful??  It is so versatile as it is 33 inches long and can be double and even tripled for a completely different look. Here's what you do to enter...visit the Halle Joy website {sign in for special offers} and tell me what your favorite piece is by leaving a comment below.  An extra entry is earned by agreeing to have another online Halle Joy party or if you are local, you can agree to host a live party. {leave a comment saying you will have a party, and email me and I will put you in touch with my sister-in-law, Becky}  Contest ends Sunday night (4/17/11) at midnight!

Also for 23 Design Co. readers is a special any handbag and get a necklace FREE {thankful heart, safe and secure, trust, believe, captive heart, heart of love (pink or white) or beauty necklace only}.  This offer is good only through 4/26/11.  Happy shopping and good luck! : )

Friday, April 8, 2011

A trip out of the 70's

I've had one of those weeks where I've had to finish a whole lot of know, those ones that you ALMOST finish and then don't get around to actually finishing and it sits there till you put all the supplies away and totally forget about it....maybe I'm the only that does that.  : )  Anyway, one of my projects this week was to hang these mirrors that one of best friends so kindly gave me {you know who you are!}. 

So, one of the drawbacks of living in an old house {even though y'all know my LOVE for older homes} is the funky designs that you find that usually reflect the period when it was built.   Sometimes it is cool and helps make the house unique...not so in this case.  Our house has lots of great built-ins, but it has these lattice window things in between the master bed and bath.
you can check out the only wallpaper left in the house in the's about half off

I don't love them, but it's one of those things, I've learned to deal with because I'm not sure the amount of work to fix it would be worth it.  So, I came up with a compromise....I unscrewed the back of the mirror hangers and then screwed it back in with some ribbon in it and then hung it up over the lattice.

sorry for the fuzzy pic

I may revamp it a bit, but I think it atleast takes away some of the cool 70's lattice look.
I know it still would look better with a a new sheet of drywall, but I think I'm liking this new look that took almost no effort pretty good.  SOOOO...what's your verdict??  Cheesy trying to cover it up or a step in the right direction?

Oh and guess what??  It's another Friday night at home alone (with the kids, of course)...I'm thinking my husband would be surprised to NOT find something painted or redone by the time he gets home, don't you? : )  I'll let you know what I get ahold of....
Penny Lane Designs