On A Whim… A Day Trip

    I adore antiques!  Awhile back I was reading a blog and fell in love with this antique store… um I mean barn.  I barn that has been transformed into a antique store and outside a pink silo with polka dots.  YES… this is right up my alley.  To my amazement it was located in Virginia!  I hae ntioned going there at least a million time and hubby brought be there.  I could have spent a couple thousand dollars easily! 

On A Whim Antiques in Leesburg, VA.

      The main reason for my visit, Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.  I have been wanting to buy some for at least a year now and well there are no dealers super close.  I am sure I could have order it online but how fun is that?  I like to shop, SEE stuff and fill my mind with all the treasures I’ve seen.  I got my paint and already started a project.  I small project but at least I am doing something.  Start small and move on the bigger projects.  The reason for the paint… two bookshelves and an television armoire.  I have know how I would paint them for a few years but it seems like with move all the time.  I will start working on them soon.  I need to take all the books out of them and make myself a place to paint in the garage.

A cute little shop in historic Leesburg, VA.

     I know it will probably take longer than I want o get them started because I will start cleaning the garage and end up doing the whole thing.  We have a HUGE move coming up next year and we  I will be sorting EVERYTHING!  SO newly painted bookshelves…. coming soon.

A romantic dinner for two, four we have children.

Kool Beenz Fat Quarter Swap

     I am participating in my first ever Fat Quarter Swap hosted by Kool Beenz.  I went shopping last week to pick up my goodies for the swap.  The first fabric I found was actually a apron panel and I knew it was going to be one of the bonus goodies in my package.  I was looking for pre-cut fat quarters and the store I went to was having a huge sale and the fat quarters were 30% off.  The sale met that they had very slim picking on the fat quarters.  So I decided I would just get the panel and try another store.  I turned around after having the panel cut and found a fabric that matched perfectly with one in the apron panel.  I went and had this fabric cut.  I then decided  too look around at the yardage and see if I could find any other fabrics to go with my theme.  I found another one! Yay.  Now I had two fabrics to cut fat quarters from and a bonus fabric panel.
     On to the second store where they sell pre-cut fat quarters.  I grabbed the panel and walking in to see what I could find.  SCORE… two fat quarters!  I now had the four fat quarters I needed for the package.  I grabbed some ric rac too… because everyone love ric rac.  Right?
     Since I have never cut a fat quarter and I remember I had seen a tutorial on how to cut fat quarters.  I looked it up at Sew Mama Sew.  Boom… that was easy!  I see myself buying lots of half yards which will give me two fat quarters.

       My finished fat quarter swap package.  I wrapped it up and sent it out today and I sure hope my swap buddy will love it.  I can’t wait to see my package!  I am already looking forward to the next swap, it sure is fun picking out goodies to surprise someone. 

Spring Break… Spring Blink

      I can’t believe the week is already over!  We had a 10 day Spring Break and it just wasn’t enough time to do all the fun things I had planned.  We can say that it was fun but it went to so quickly.
     One day we went to Chippokes Plantation State Park with a friend.  The weather was still a bite chilly and they didn’t have all the building open yet.  We did see a few pigs, donkeys, and chickens.  They had a lot of old farming equipment; telling how corn, cotton, and peanuts were harvested.  It was all very interesting.  There was a few flowers out now but I would love to go back and see how different everything looks when the leaves are out.

I will say I much more of a picture person than one for writing.

Waiting to Grow

     In January I started The Simplified Home on wordpress, I have been having a hard time sticking with blogging from wordpress because it is new and different.  I tried but it seem to take me forever to edit one post and add pictures.  After a few months of not using my blog I thought, go back to blogger.  Here I am!
     January is the month for new beginnings and a list of things we would like to accomplish.  I know for myself I had a huge list of places to go and things to accomplish on my to do list.  In the four months, what have I actually crossed off?  Not much.  I hear myself asking, “I wonder if I can make up for the lost time, can I still get back on track and be where I should be?”  In some areas I can make up for the lost time but in others I will never make it up.  I need to start over…. fresh start.  Starting tomorrow I need to look at the list and pick one thing to accomplish daily.  I know that it will help me see the progress I am making and I will be excited to see how much is getting finished.
    What are these things on my today list?
     I have decided that 2013 is a year that I will start making healthier changes in my life, home, and mind.  My family will eat healthier, move more and limit sugar and sweets.  We will remove chemical cleaners and other products in the home that contain unsafe chemicals.  We will use cloth napkins, cloth kitchen towels (instead of paper), we will not be using paper plates and will continue to recycle.  While tossing out the garbage in the house I will also work on tossing out the garbage in my mind.  I know my thinking isn’t helping me and it has been a huge road block for me over the pass few months.  Praying that God will guide me along as I make these changes.

I feel much like the urn above….. I look a little bare but I am full.  My seeds are planted and I am awaiting the rain and sunshine to nourish me.  For when I receive them I will grown and flourish.
~Stephanie (me)

Happy Easter

      Happy Easter!   We had planned to go to the beach with friends today after church but it was rainy this morning.  We decided to go out to eat and come back to our house to color Easter eggs.  Even with the rain it was a nice day.  I missed visiting with all our family back home but look forward to knowing that soon we will be able to visit with them more.
      I can’t believe today is the last day of March.  I can’t wait to see what April holds for our family and look forward to counting down another month toward our BIG move.  There is no doubt that the next year/two will be busy and full.

Baby Bug fishing in the kitchen because it is too wet to play outside.

Tea Rose Home & Ruby Jean’s Closet Giveaway

Mary at Ruby Jean’s Closet is having a giveaway on Tea Rose Home.  The giveaway is for 5 PDF patterns.  I checked out Ruby Jean’s Closet on Etsy and am so excited about the giveaway because these are adorable patterns.  I have two daughters (and a niece) I can sew for… these patterns would be so fun.  These are the five I would pick if I won!

Peony - Flower Girl Dress. Party Dress PDF Pattern Tutorial, Easy Sew, sizes 12m-10 included

I love this dress….. Peony Flower Girl Dress.  Below a close up of the details.

Peony - Flower Girl Dress. Party Dress PDF Pattern Tutorial, Easy Sew, sizes 12m-10 included

Peggy Sue Ruffle Dress and Top

 Peggy Sue - Ruffle Dress and Top Pattern - Girl's Sewing Pattern. Toddler Dress Pattern. Sizes 2 -10

Peggy Sue - Ruffle Top and Dress Pattern - Girl's Sewing Pattern. Toddler Dress Pattern. Sizes 2-10

Betsy Girl’s Peasant Dress

Betsy - Girl's Peasant Dress Pattern PDF. Girl's Sewing Pattern.Tutorial Easy Sew Sizes 12m-10 included

Sweet Cheeks Peasant Top

Sweet Cheeks - Peasant Top Pattern PDF. Girl's Sewing Pattern. Girl's Top Pattern. Toddler Top Pattern sizes 1-10

I ADORE this top…… I picture this top for the girls on 4th of July!!

Ruby Jean’s 30 Minute Skirt

Ruby Jean's 30 Minute Skirt - Girl's  Skirt Pattern PDF. Girl Sewing Pattern. PDF Pattern. Toddler Pattern. Sizes 1-10

Ruby Jean's 30 Minute Skirt - Girl's  Skirt Pattern PDF. Girl Sewing Pattern. PDF Pattern. Toddler Pattern. Sizes 1-10

Ruby Jean's 30 Minute Skirt - Girl's  Skirt Pattern PDF. Girl Sewing Pattern. PDF Pattern. Toddler Pattern. Sizes 1-10

Check out Ruby Jean’s Closet!!!  Thanks again for the wonderful giveaway.

Monday Mornings, blah

What is on the agenda for today? A load of laundry at some point during the day. I really should wash out the refrigerator.  I need to clean off my desk but I am not sure I really want to tackle that today.  Tonight… Zumba class!  I haven’t been for almost a whole month now, a combination for Christmas and just feeling depressed/not wanting to do anything.

Quote of the day:

Small changes make a BIG difference.

1000 Gifts {Day 6}    

One thing in your bag, fridge, and your heart.                                                                        

  1. pocket size Bible
  2. Food for the family
  3. Hope of a Canaan Experience in my own life

1000 Gifts {Day 7}                                                                                                       

  3 Graces from people you love

  1. Phone call from my best friend
  2. Daughter’s giggles as she rode her bike
  3. Exciting squeals from older daughter because she getting to Zumba with me tonight

Family Adventure

We went to a park this afternoon, it is part of the civil war trail. We enjoyed the wooded area and discovered a new path that we didn’t realized that exsisted. Discovering this path was pretty exciting for me since it lead to a bridge that I kept seeing from the road. When we would drive by it I would say…”I really want to walk on that bridge.” We have lived here for almost 18 months and I finally got to walk across the bridge.

We explored the park.  We found a few birds nest, we seen the foam on the water, many pinecones, mushrooms on fallen trees, twisted vines, a few ducks.  There was a balance beam and a hill to run up.  Big sister even came back down to help her little sister get up.  The hill was a little slippery since it was covered with pine needles.

DAD and girls


    Lady bugPinecone

I swear is looks like the vine to the left of the pine cones spells LOVE and a little vine heart to the left of that.

I swear is looks like the vine to the left of the pine cones spells LOVE and a little vine heart to the left of that.

woodwooden post

foamy water and twisted branches

foamy water and twisted branches


My daughter seen a stump and asked if she could sit on it.  I told her that was fine and Daddy and sissy joined.  I suggested they count the rings since the tree was huge.  My daughter didn’t want to count but my hubby started counting.  There was a huge rotten spot in the center of the tree so he started counting a few inches from the hole.  He counted 129 rings… minus the huge area that couldn’t be counted.  We are guessing it was around 150 years old.  I am thinking that it was a little sapling during the Civil War.  Neat!

Counting tree rings

Counting the 129 rings… plus there is the huge rotten spot. 150 year old tree stump

 We walked on a little island and see a few fisherman in kayaks.  I love the reflections on the water and the post being beaten by the tide.

kayak fisherman

tree reflection

We spent a few hours there and the sun was starting to set.  Time to call it a day.  The sky was beautiful.

boat dock sunset

Sunset Chesapeake water way

Sunset Chesapeake water way

Quote of the day:

I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in. ~George Washington Carver

1000 Gifts {Day 5}

Something you’re reading, making, seeing

  1. Thing Good Things
  2. Memories with family
  3. God’s masterpiece… Nature