Monday, August 27, 2012

{DIY Photo Plaque}

Two weekends ago, I had a BIG DIY weekend.  First the flag, and then 2 photo plaques to complete my new mantle decor.  I have seen these floating around Pinterest and decided to take a swing at it.  We actually managed to get an awesome family portrait at the beach this year, as well as a pretty dramatic shot of the boys.  I wanted to display them both but didn't want to spend the money for frames.

I started off by purchasing two wooden plaques at Hobby Lobby, one to fit a 5x7 print and the other an 8x10 print.  I purchased both for less than $5.00.  I then printed the photos out on matte photo paper, which I already had handy.  I chose to leave the plaques as they were.  I toyed with the idea of staining them dark, but didn't want the mantle to be too heavy.  It was far less time consuming this way...just sayin'...and I think they balanced out the flag nicely.  If you want to try this project, you will also need Modge Podge (matte version), a paint brush or sponge, and a dry rag.

 Yes, I use my washer and dryer for projects.  It's the perfect height.  Don't judge!

Step 1: Brush a thin layer of MP on the wood plaque and let it dry completely.  This will establish a perfect base for your print.

Step 2: Once the first layer of MP has dried, bush another layer on the wood, as well as a the BACK of the photo.

Step 3: Carefully position the print onto the wood plaque.  I needed an extra set of hands for this part.  Once the MP has been brushed on the back of the print, it will become flimsy.  So, you really only have one shot at getting this right. 

Step 4: Once the print is positioned how you want it, use a thin rag to GENTLY smooth out any air bubbles.

Step 5: Add a thick layer of MP to the top of the print to seal it in.  It will be cloudy at first, but will dry clear.

Once it's dry, you are ready to display your photos.  This was super easy and much cheaper than purchasing frames.  Not to mention, your options are limitless!  You can paint them any color you want and the plaques come in tons of different shapes and sizes!

The finished product!!!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

{DIY Flag Project}

My family was wondering around Kudzu Antiques Market (one of my favorite places on the planet) a few months ago, when something jumped out at me.  It was a super awesome, handmade, reclaimed wood flag that used seashells instead of stars.  Anyone who knows me, knows that I love all things red, blue and beach.  This piece cost an arm and a leg, so there was no way I could bring it home...especially since Kevin was in the store with me.  So, I waited patiently until I had all of the pieces to create my own version, with my husband's help of course.

We started with plywood that Kevin has been hoarding in the garage.  I love the texture it has!

I picked up these craft paints at Hobby Lobby a while ago.  We do so many projects, so I knew they would come in handy eventually.

We starting out with a light coat of the cream paint.  I wanted the texture and the grain to show through,
so it was kind of a haphazard paint job.

 Once the paint was dry, we taped off the lines for the stripes.  This was definitely the toughest part of the project.  But thanks to my handy husband, it went pretty quickly.

Once the paint was dry and the painters tape was removed, I took this wonderful, magical metallic glaze and bronzed it up.  I seriously cannot tell you how many times this stuff has been used.  I got it at Michael's about a year ago and there is still a TON left.  It lasts forever!  To apply, I used a good paint brush, but them followed behind with a wet rag.  This way, it really only built up in the cracks and accentuated the texture of the wood.

Close-up: It has an aged feel to it.  Sort of like it's been hanging out in the basement of my Nanny's house for the last 30 years. PERFECT!

Done with paint!

On vacation this year, Colton and I scoured the beaches for seashells.  We came back with three bags of them.  So I went through and tried to find shells that were similar in shape and size.  I wasn't particularly worried about the color, though.

During this process, I got a new phone.  Which was really exciting, since it has a much better camera than I'm used to.  The only problem is that I forgot to take final shots with my actual camera.  Oops!  Here's a close up of the shells in their place.  I used super glue around the edges to make them stick.  It seems to be working just fine.  If you try this out, or anything similar, I highly advise wearing gloves.  I wasn't thinking and wound up peeling super glue off of my fingers for two days.

 Ta Daaaaa!  The flag has taken its' rightful place on my mantle.  It makes me happy!

Friday, August 24, 2012

{Colton's Superhero 3rd Birthday Party}

Colton has a thing for put it mildly!  He loves them all and has a costume for each of his favorites.  By far, his favorite is Spiderman.  His Daddy and I took that theme and ran with it, to create one super fun, superhero birthday party!  So many of our family and friends came out to celebrate Colt's big day.  We are very blessed to have each and everyone of them in our lives.

My sweet boys had so much fun...he hasn't stopped talking about the party and all of the people who were a part of it.  It is something he will remember for a very long time.  Here are some of the photos from the day:

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

{Spring / Summer Catch Up}

Um...sorry for being MIA for the past few months.  I have done nothing but spend time with my boys and travel.  I am certainly not has been such a blessing!  I will catch up on that later in the week.  Right now, I do want to get caught up, since the purpose of this blog is really to document out life with the boys.  They have had a pretty BIG few months and I have a lot to share.

I left off right before Hayden's 5th Birthday.  Man that seems like forever ago, but we have such awesome memories.  We had a total of 25 kiddos and their parents.  I am so thankful for each and every person who came to celebrate our little buddy that day...tons of friends and family.  Hayden had the best time at CAMP HAYDEN!  Here's a rundown of the party events and vendors:

Invitations and Sign Printables: Shindig Parties to Go (
Birthday Boy's Shirt: The Pecking Order by Zoey's Attic (
Paper Goods: Striped Straws, Trail Mix Bags, Cup Cake Liners, Fruit/Jello Cups: The Party Fairy (
Cake & Cupcakes: Publix

Fruit and Veggie Cups
Sloppy Joes
Hot Dogs
Cole Slaw
Buffalo Chicken Dip w/ Tortilla Chips
Water Bottles
Sweet Tea
Beetle Juice (Inspiration -
Trail Mix Bar: Chex Mix, Gold Fish, Yogurt Covered Raisins, M&M's, Teddy Grahams, Pretzels, Dried Fruit, Gummy Worms & Bears
Smores (the real deal)
Campfire Pops (Inspiration -

Bug In The Tent Relay (Epic Fail!!! But a fun idea...maybe for older kids)
Fishing Tourney
Tag Game
Corn Hole Tourney

Bandanna Cloth (I already had some from Hobby Lobby)
Magnifying Glass
Sticky Bugs
Camping Suckers
Smores-To-Go (Golden Grahams, Mini Marshmallows & Chocolate Chips)
***All toy items purchased at Party City

I cannot believe my oldest baby is already 5!!!  It was a lot of work to prepare for this party, but to see the joy and excitement in his eyes made it all worth it.  He is such a special boy, with the biggest heart of any kid I know.  He deserves all of the wonderful things I know God has in store for him!