Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Pallet Wood Wall Art Round Up

I recently delivered my latest batch of Pallet Art to Jill over at Twigs and Twine.
Rather than do different posts of each piece,
I decided to just post all of them together in one big round up.

Here's a few pics of her space over at Zinnia's.


Just like the projects before, such as this one, and this one,
I used my sister's Cricut.
Some one asked my how I do my lettering so here's the quick how-to.

This is the big 12 inch Cricut.
It's called the Cricut Expression.
You can cut up to 24 inches in length and you can set it to fit the space you want.

I'm using the Home Accents Cartridge for the word art.
You can choose the word art you want or use an alphabet font to create your own.
One of the boards I did used this method.

Cut the Contact paper to fit the mat and press firmly to adhere to the mat, paper side down.
Load in to the machine and select the design you want.
I set the pressure to low since it is contact paper with a really thin thickness.
Regular paper would be a medium.
Cardstock would be a high.

Select the size you want and then hit cut.
It will tell you if the image will fit the space you have.

Let it work it's magic cutting the image you selected.
Unload the mat and carefully peel the contact paper off the mat.

For my boards I did a few ombre pieces.
It was fun doing these.
I really like the color wash effect and this was easy to do.

I used some white paint, along with 2 other colors.

Start with the white and paint one board with a dry brush.
Add some of the lightest shade of paint to the white and mix briefly.
Brush on the next board.

Since I'm doing two of the same pieces, there are 8 boards, 
2 of each color.

Gradually add more color to the original white and move to the next board.

Brush on with a dry brush in quick long strokes.

Let dry and screw the slats together the same as shown below.

Add some hanging hardware at this point or wait until the very end.

Then I used the negative of the contact paper and pressed it firmly to the board.
Pounce the paint in the open spaces like this project.
Let dry completely and gently remove the stencil.

I gave it a good sanding to age it a bit and then a clear coat of Polyurethane to seal it.

So here's the round up of the boards I did.

 These were done the same way, just not an ombre finish to the boards.

I wanted to do some green ombre boards as well.
Same process as the blue.
The letters were cut using the Billionaire cartridge and I placed them so they look welded together.

A little more Love.

Here's the last piece.
A green ombre with a gold "Family."

I love how they turned out,
plus I had fun playing around with paint color.

I hope you got some good inspiration from these boards.
I'd love to hear about it if you do!

I'm linking up over at Domestically Speaking!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Real Homemade Apple Chips

On a previous post, I mentioned that my life has been in an upheval lately.

Well I'm ready to share.

I've been converted to The Real Food family.
The 2 main sources for my guidance and inspiration come from
DaNell over at Weed 'em and Reap.
And Lisa over at 100 days of Real Food.

I've been heading towards this transformation for a long time,
not really knowing that is what I was headed too.
I have been making things from scratch for a long time.
Trying to incorporate more fruits and vegetables and whole grains into our diet.
Avoiding processed as much as possible.
Learning about sprouting grains and the huge nutritional benefits.

Maybe it stems from watching some of the people around me
that are unhealthy and have many, many health problems.
And as I do more research, I have found that many of these problems
can be reversed or eliminated just by changing what we put into our bodies.

Maybe it comes from scripture.

If you don't don't what that is, you can go here to learn more.
One of the things that we believe in is modern day revelation.
One of those revelations has to do with what we eat.
What's good, what's bad.
There's the easy part for me, no smoking, no drinking.
But learning what I should be eating and why is a learning process.
The Scripture that I think had the most impact on me is this verse:

 Behold, verily, thus saith the Lord unto you: In consequence ofaevils and designs which do and will exist in the hearts ofbconspiring men in the last days, I have cwarned you, and forewarn you, by giving unto you this word of wisdom by revelation—

The evils and designs of conspiring men.

If you want to read the whole chapter it is here.
And the more I read about what goes into processed foods,
High Fructose Corn Syrup, pesticides, hormones, etc. etc. ETC, 
I'm at a loss as to what to feed my family.

Until now.

My counter has a bucket of wheat either soaking, sprouting, or drying on any given day.
I also make kefir.
Both Milk and Water.
That has been a learning process as well.
I will share more on another day.

But let's start with something simple.
Since its apple season, that is the easiest place to start.

My kids love fruit as a snack.
We also love making the twirly apples for their lunches.
But sometimes it's nice to have some dried fruit.
This is super easy.
A good option if you don't want to spend the time is here.

But I want to do it myself.
So I pulled out my Apple Corer Slicer.
It makes quick work of slicing the apples
and you get even thickness slices.

5 1/2 apples will fill up 2 cookie sheets.

If you don't want the peels, this tool will take them off for you.
I wanted to leave them on.

Once you cut the apple slice down one side with a paring knife.
This makes the rings.

There are 2 ways to make the Apple chips.

1. In the oven.
Preheat your oven while you get your trays ready to 200 degress F.

Put a sheet of parchment paper on the cookie sheet.
Spread out the apple rings in a single layer.
Sprinkle with cinnamon.

Bake for 1 hour, then rotate trays and bake for another hour, or until desired crispyness.
Let cool and store in an airtight container.

2. In a Food Dehydrator
Place apple chips sprinkled with cinnamon on trays lined with parchment paper.
Dry for 10-12 hours.
Again store in an airtight container.

I've done both methods.
Both work well.
My personal preference is to use the dehydrator because I don't have to
heat up my oven for 2 hours, but the end result is very similar.
Choose what works for you.

An easy Real yummy snack!


There will be lots more recipes as I complete this tranformation to all Real Food.
Be sure to come back often!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Last Minute Halloween Decor with Loads of Free Printables

So Halloween is only 1 week away.
And I'm just getting around to finishing up my decor.
It really was a last minute, 
lets throw some stuff together and hope it looks good kind of a process.

Luckily I had everything I needed.
Just go shopping in your own house and see what you have.
My decor ideas are taken from stuff you  probably already have around.
If you don't have it, be creative and use what you do.

Plus at the end I will give you loads of free printables.
I know you could pull that off.
Just -Save-Print-Done-.
If you're out of printer ink, 
well... you might have to go to the store for that one.
You're gonna need it eventually anyway right?

Let's get started.
This post is going to be picture rich.
Just a forewarning.

Kitchen Table.
A very good place to start.

For this table scape I grouped the following:

A large square of Chevron Fabric I had in my stash.
I think just about any black and white print would work well here.
I didn't even press it.
Just kind of laid it out and scrunched it up a little.

My black painted terra cotta pot.
It was left from another project.
Re-use right?

Some black fabric and a plastic pumpkin.
Both from my stash.

Then I just looked around and found some different glassware I had.
Along with the white metal pitcher from IKEA.

Some dead branches I broke off a tree outside.

And a sprinkling of some dried black beans from my pantry.

Done and Done.

Around my table I have my black picture frames you can see here and here.
I printed out some black and white skeleton images I got from The Graphics Fairy.
Some of them I used last time.  The owl and Raven are new this year.
Plus I resized them to be 5x7 instead of 8x10.
You can fit 2 on a page.

Each image was printed, cut out and mounted on random
pieces of Halloween scrapbook paper I had in my stash.
Again, use what you have.

I also made the Halloween banner to hang over the window.
The printables are at the end of this post.
They were also cut out and mounted on scrapbook paper.
I sewed the letters to a strip of ribbon.
You could also punch holes in the corners and string them up that way too.

Right side.

Left side.

Kitchen Done.

Now for the faux mantle.

I'm in Arizona.
Why would I need a real fireplace?

For decorating of course, but since I don't have one, this shelf is my next best thing.
It's in my living room over the couch.
I change it out regularly depending on the season.

You already saw the Chevron Boo31 board earlier.

I added a few things to finish it off.

I added this raven picture to a vintage frame I picked up 
from Goodwill a while ago.  
I think it fits perfectly.

The Mason jar and keys you can see here.
Along with some more glassware I found around the house.

I think a few are vintage apothecary jars,
along with a washed out Tabasco jar.
I'm just weird that way.

The Boo and Eek signs are also printables you will find at the end.
These were also sewn to a ribbon and strung up between my red shutters.

This  spiderweb wreath was so easy to make and I loved it so much I did two of them.
One for the faux mantle and one for the front door.
I used white crochet thread to string around my grapevine wreaths.
Make the cross pieces working around the circle going back and forth,
then start spiralling towards the center wrapping the string around each cross piece.
It's pretty simple once you get going.
I did have to push the center spiral out towards the edges a few times to keep them straight
and taught.

Tie off the center with a knot and add some plastic spiders.
Some were spider rings, others were just large plastic spiders.
Easy. Creepy!

Lastly, we had to have Randall.
We are huge Monsters Inc. fans.
A friend had cut out some monsters and witches to put in her windows using black roofing paper.
She bought a whole roll from Home Depot and had some left.
I asked if I could buy a few feet from her and she said just take what you need.

After looking all over for a good image of Randall and being unsucessful,
I just turned on the Movie and skipped to the end when Randall ends up in the Mobile Home.

I paused the movie and started sketching.
After I got the look I wanted, I cut it out and taped the images to my window.

One last look.
Try one, or try them all.
Just use what you have and get creative!

I promised free printables.
Here you go.
They are each sized to fit an 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of paper.
Print to your hearts content,

Just don't sell them.
That's stealing.
Not cool!

Happy Halloween!

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