Easter Bunny & Banner Craft

Hi There Friends!

Jules inspired me to get out my craft supplies and do the Easter project I’ve been eyeing on Pinterest! This is my own variation of the one I saw and I love the simplicity of it.  So if you feel inspired to do a simple Easter craft, this would be a good one to try!  You can get creative with the colors and even the words or shape of the bunny.


Easter Craft Blog
Supplies:

1 canvas any size (I used 9 1/2 ” x 10 ”  I cut the cost by using a 40% coupon from Joanns)

Acrylic paint (your color preference-I used a light blue), white acrylic paint

Assorted paint brushes (stiffer brushed work best for getting close to the edges)

Stencil of a bunny shape your choice-(I did a Google search for image of rabbit and found this one.)

Ribbon-any color

Scrapbook paper

Glue Dots

Gel Pens or Sharpie Marker-your color choice

small needle or pin

Directions:

1. Choose your bunny pattern, print and cut out using an X-Acto knife (Be careful not to cut on a soft surface).

2.Using 5-6 glue dots, glue the bunny on the canvas (the dots will peel right off when you are done).

3.Paint around the bunny stencil with the acrylic paint color of your choice.  Hold the paper down with your finger as you paint near the edges of the bunny so the paint doesn’t seep under the paper.  I did two coats of paint in blue.  When the paint dries, lift the bunny stencil off and peel off any remaining glue dots from the canvas.

4. Use the white paint to touch up any edges where the paint may have smudged on your white bunny. I painted my bunny white, but you could easily leave it and just use the white of the canvas.

5.Using scrapbook paper (I found small scraps of paper to use for this.), cut the triangle banners.  I cut the paper two inches long for this size canvas.

6.Use a gel pen or Sharpie to write the words on your banner.  You could laminate the paper or use contact paper to cover the triangles so they will hold up better.  I did not have this available for my project so I just used the paper.

7.Cut the ribbon to fit your canvas.  Leave some slack in the ribbon so it can drape down and have room to tape the ends in the back.

8.Use the needle or pin to poke a small hole at the top of the triangle and feed the ribbon through using the pin. I alternated threading the ribbon over the top and up through the back. (Honestly-this was the most challenging part of the whole project-feeding the ribbon through the tiny holes).

9. Tape the ends of the ribbon on back and use the glue dots to secure the triangles so they do not flip around.

The whole project took me about an hour from start to finish.  I used a Command Hook to hang it in our hallway and it makes me happy every time I see it!  I feel a sense of accomplishment at actually doing a craft and  I love the words on the print. It reminds me to take time to reflect, give thanks and REJOICE! during this blessed Easter season.

Thanks Jules for inspiring me to get crafty!

~Blessings,

Jen

Finding Positives in the Negatives!

Greetings Faithful Followers!

As you know we live in the icy state of Michigan. We seem to have nothing to talk about except how cold it is (oh, trust me, it is cold here!!) Sometimes though we have to look through the negatives (like last Friday’s -34 degree’s) and find some beauty. It’s about finding the positive, even though things look pretty negative. I had my husband take me for a little drive yesterday and I was able to capture some of the beauty of our wonderful Lake Huron. I like hot sun and sand, but places where there is always hot sun and sand….well…it could get boring….but the Lake Huron…it changes with the season, and the sky color and the temperature. And sometimes, it’s most beautiful when it’s frozen! Enjoy a few of the sights I found yesterday! And then go out and find your positive!!

Happy March

Julie

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God Speaks To Us

My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.

                                                                                                                            John 10:27

Have you ever wished God would speak to you directly, like we read about in the Old Testament of the Bible?  When I pray, sometimes I wish I would hear a deep, booming voice that clearly answers my prayer or gives me words of wisdom and comfort.  We may not hear a concrete voice, but I’m convinced that God still speaks to us in a variety of ways.  I was witness to this over the past two weeks, as I grieved the loss of two very special Uncles.

My Uncle Claude had been admitted to the hospital and despite bouncing back many times, it seemed that he was getting weaker.  I was not ready to say good-bye and I felt so sad one evening.  It was then it came, a text out of nowhere, with a number that was not in my contact list,  saying, “Hey, how are you?”  I almost didn’t answer, but decided to ask who it was.  It turned out to be an old childhood friend that I hadn’t talked to in a while.  She was always around my family growing up and she knew my Uncle and even cleaned his house, so she was in the loop with what was going on with him, probably more so than me.  That night we texted back and forth and she shared some things with me about my Uncle and some conversations that they recently had that truly brought me so much comfort.  I knew that it was no coincidence that she texted me that night, she was sent to me by God to bring words of comfort and peace.

The next day, my Uncle Claude passed away.  I learned the news while I was at work and I did my best to hold it together.  Once my students had left for the day, I sat at my desk and was gathering my things to go home.  I wanted to make it to my car before I started crying.  Then my desk phone rang.  My phone hardly ever rings, unless it is an emergency and I had a silent debate in my head whether or not to answer it.  I decided to answer it but knew it was a mistake when my voice cracked and the tears I had been holding back all afternoon poured out.  Again, God sent his special message of comfort to me though this phone call.  It was my teaching partner I had worked with for five years, who was now at another school calling to say hi and see how I was doing.  She was just the person I needed at that moment to give me words of comfort and cheer.

I lost my Uncle Herb a few days later.  When we got the news, it was the same day we were going to the funeral home for my Uncle Claude.  We were all together as a family, grieving this loss and I could feel God there so close in the hugs from loved ones, the words spoken and the shared memories.  Being with my family helped sooth my heart.  Again, God provided comfort when I needed it most.  At my Uncle Herb’s funeral, the Pastor read many passages from the Bible that I felt spoke to me and offered comfort admist my grief.  The words were like a balm to my hurting heart.

I will miss both Uncles so much.  They were such kind, happy,  hard working men.  Both were farmers, treasured family and loved God.  I know they are at peace, home with the Lord and re-united with those who have gone before.  I find comfort in the promises of God during this time of grieving and am thankful for the way He sent a message of love and comfort to me during this difficult time through some very special people and His Word.

A few days before this loss, Little One and I saw this phenomenon, I later learned is called a Sun Dog, on our way to work and school.  It was like a rainbow coming right out of the frigid morning sky next to the rising sun.  It was brilliant and beautiful and looking back, I realize it was just another way God was letting me know He loves me and He is in control.  What an awesome God we have to give us such beauty to enjoy!  I also like to think that just maybe this was Heaven preparing a big party and celebration to welcome my Uncles home.

IMG_3655Blessings,

Jen

 

Paying It Forward

The Mister forwarded this video to me and I just had to share it with you.  As we approach the week of Thanksgiving and we reflect on the many blessings we have in our lives, let us not forget the soldiers who so bravely sacrifice all for us.  Let us keep them and their families in our prayers, especially during this holiday season when many will be away from loved ones.

Grab a tissue, and prepare to be inspired!!

~Blessings,

Jen

State Championship Moments

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The happy couple!

 

IMG_3001Our brother during the “Father-Daughter” Dance

A few weeks ago, my niece got married on a spectacular, fall day.  It was a day filled with celebration, love, fun and family.  At the reception, our brother surprised us all with a very poignant speech for the bride and groom with the theme of “State Championship moments”.  It was an amazing speech and he so graciously agreed to be be a guest writer for us and let us share his inspirational words with you!  I hope you enjoy this message as much as we did and it inspires you to look and be thankful for your own “State Championship moments” in life!

 

“…Now for a moment, I want to take you back in time to early fall 1979.  Myself and some of my friends  that are here tonight sat in our high school gym before our season opener and listened to our football coach tell us we had the talent to go all the way to a State Championship.  It was an awesome feeling to hear that.  To envision what that joy would be like was amazing.  Could it be?  Could it really happen?  We had some really great players but could we make it all the way to the Silver Dome?

Well as my friends will tell you… that was not to be.   I won’t bore you with the details but we ended up that season 0-9 -yes- ouch.  Potential State Champions 0-9.  One crushing loss after another.  Needless to say it was very disappointing.

Fast forward to 2009 and Katy introduces us to Scotty.  We found out Scotty went to the same high school as Katy  and played football there.  Not only that, but he was on the 2003  football State Championship team.   Of course, I am not thinking about whether this young man is suited to date my daughter or not.  I ‘m thinking WOW.  He experienced a state championship! HOW COOL! He experienced a State championship moment!  How lucky to experience that euphoria at one defining moment in your life.

Now as great as that experience would have been for my friends and I, I have come to realize that State Championship moments don’t always have to happen on the playing field.  I think back over my life and although I wasn’t  able to achieve the elation Scotty and his teammates had that day on the field, our family has had many State Championship like moments.

Of course there was a moment something like tonight back in 1988 when I married my wife.  It seems like just yesterday and it was a State Championship moment!

-There was another on April 15, 1990 when we welcomed Katy into this world.  It seems like just yesterday, that I was being scolded for eating in the delivery room while Sue was in labor.  But oh what a feeling to bring that beautiful baby girl into our life.!   Of course these moments were repeated by the birth of our two sons….For our youngest, I was scolded for watching the Bulls win the championship on TV while my Sue was in labor….a bit of a pattern there but  All State Championship moments!

Sometimes these State Championship moments aren’t momentous like weddings and births though. Sometimes they can be little things like our family get togethers on Thanksgiving, Easter, and Christmas, a family Christmas Celebration in Charleston where we all got to spend time with Grandpa,  before we lost him the next year.  Things like spending time with close, lifelong friends …just hanging out and enjoying each others company and sharing each others joys and concerns.  The importance of these friendships is something I learned from my father, spending many Saturday mornings at Kenny’s restaurant with him and his buddies having coffee.  Spending Quality one on one time with your daughter having lunch together over the years. Seeing your kids turn into amazing adults and making you proud beyond your imagination and just spending time with those you love and who matter the most to you.  These are all State Championship moments.

Katy and Scott, I want you both to have many of these moments in your life. Tonight is one for sure, more will follow.   Enjoy them all, both large and small.   Faith, Family, Friends, and your love for each other are the most important things.  Pay attention to those things and they will all be State Championship moments.

I’d like to raise a toast to Katy and Scott wishing them health, happiness, and many State Championship moments in the future.”

Well done big brother and thanks for sharing!!!

~Blessings,

Jen

 

Mom-A Cherished Title

 

I don’t watch the show Family Guy, but awhile back the Mister and I saw this video and had to laugh because it is so true!  We often joke about this as we hear one of the girls call for us.  It can be relentless at times and nothing but your response will do!

You probably noticed that we have not been as active on here.  We have not forgotten about you, but as I said in the previous post, we have had a bit of a life shift around here and my free time for dreaming up inspiration has been limited.  I talked to Jules the other day and she said she just couldn’t think of anything to write about!  With inspiration though, you usually don’t have to go too far outside of your own home to find it and as I woke this morning thinking I heard someone call “Mooommmm”, the inspiration for this blog post was born.

I haven’t shared many details of  our journey to parenthood with you (that would be a lengthy post), but it was not an easy one.  One day I will share it with you, but I will share that we struggled with secondary infertility and loss before we finally completed our family through adoption.  I have always wanted to be a mother and feel so blessed to be given two incredible girls to love and cherish.

As we all know, life gets very busy with juggling work, home responsibilities, extra curricular activities and trying to even squeeze in a little fun and relaxation.  It can be a bit overwhelming at times trying to meet everyone’s needs, but it is during these moments, I try to remember of how blessed I am and how I am living the life I’ve always dreamed of.

When I hear “Mooommm” from across the house as I’m in the middle of fixing dinner, reading e-mails, or doing any of the millions daily tasks that would be easier completed if uninterrupted, I have to remind myself that I have prayed for the privilege to be called by this name.  It isn’t always easy to drop what I am doing during the day  or to be summoned from my warm, cozy bed at night by  the call of a sick or scared child, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I’ve been hearing “Mom or even better Mooommmy”, a little more often this week as both girls have colds and one has an injured leg, but each time I hear the call, I feel warm and happy inside and I remind myself how blessed I am to hear this word-a true gift from God!

Blessings,

Jen