Monday, July 25, 2011

highs & lows 7.25

Joining up to Jen's highs & lows par-tay.


~Got a belated birthday card in the mail from my sis-in-law...with a $50 AmEx gift card. Yay!

~Discovered Pioneer Woman & her recipes. Seriously?! How have I lived without knowing about her food...! Eesh.

~After our "vacation" last week (all 14 hours of it), we found & booked a new place to stay. I think it looks nice, cozy, and CLEAN. See?


~My 5 day vacation became 14 measly hours due to--well, you can read about it here, if you've not yet had the pleasure. Have popcorn ready.

~Ants took over my pantry. All of the food is on a folding table in the kitchen while we kill the little you-know-whats. It stinks. Why does bug spray have to smell so bad?

~My dad's father died on Saturday. My parents had left Thursday for their first vacation in 6 years (since my grandmother, rest her soul, got sick)...and ended up coming home Friday night. He passed on Saturday at home. I was not really close to him at all; but still, he was my dad's father and I'm sad for my daddy. This makes the 3rd death in our families (mine & hubby's) since June 14. It's really taking a toll.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

art with kiddos, part 2

Hey, y'all!

Welcome back! I hope you enjoyed part 1 of "art with kiddos"--my adventures in art when I taught pre-school!

So in addition to displaying the art of the show's theme, art from throughout the school year is displayed all over the school. Huge posters are made highlighting the best pieces from each child in each grade, and are hung outdoors lining the sidewalks in front of the school.

Here's a look at the year's artwork from my kiddos on display:

Did any of you take a guess as to who our author was???

We chose to create art from "If You Give A Mouse A Cookie"...

{cookies: foam board, brown/white blended tempera paint, coffee bean "chocolate chips"}

{mice: tempera paint blended with sand for texture, buttons, pipe cleaners, googly eyes, denim cutout for overalls. Crayons and sketches that the mouse draws in the book!}

Here's "If You Give A Cat A Cupcake"...

{beach balls, cats, sand castles}

Here is "If You Give A Pig A Party"...

{pigs, ice cream cones from fun foam, actual party hats decorated by the kiddos}

And art from "If You Give A Moose A Muffin"...

{moose on canvas with kid's names written themselves; muffins and jam in the background}

{cupcakes on display with worksheets from Laura Numeroff's website}

The most awesome thing for the kiddos? We wrote a letter to Laura Numeroff herself, and received a reply! I found on her website where she mentioned she always replies to fan I though, why not? We told her about our art show, and each kiddo signed their name. I included a picture from our Christmas musical. She replied with a sweet letter and bookmarks for each of the kids!

{refreshments table, books on display, and a letter from Laura Numeroff!}

I'm so glad I had the opportunity to teach these awesome kids! I'm still in touch with almost all of them (thanks to Facebook). It's been awesome to see them grow; I'm sad that they're big enough now to go to "big school"!!! The kids taught me so much, showed so much love, and really encouraged me to get back into my realm of creating as well.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

art with kiddos, part 1

Hey, y'all!

If you've browsed my little corner of blogland you may have read that I taught pre-school for a year.

Yes, willingly. And rather enthusiastically! :)

I had a class of 3's all to myself and we had a blast.

I taught at a small private school and art was a huge focus of each day, regardless of the age of the student. Each spring was a huge "art show" that showed off artwork from each class throughout the school year.

In addition, there would be a school-wide theme (this particular year was children's authors) and each class created a room full of artwork especially related to the theme.

What made this project even more near & dear to my heart?

I attended this school as a child, and have awesome memories of my own art shows.

The art show was a huge deal, and preparation began after Christmas for the spring show. So from 8-11:30 when lunch for my kiddos began, I had to cram in circle time, story time, music, letter & numerical lessons, and...


Which usually culminated in my desk looking like this come lunch time:

So I wanted to share the artwork with y'all today, and just a little mention of how it was made. I wasn't blogging much then, so I don't have tutorials or step-by-step instructions, and all the projects were my idea, so no links to show you. My apologies :)

At this point, I would like to offer up a little challenge...can you tell me who my author is? Remember, the theme is children's take a peek at our art and see if it reminds you of any books!

No tangible prize, just a shout-out to anyone who guesses correctly :)

Here we go.

*Cupcakes made using styrofoam balls, cupcake liners, paint and real sprinkles! The kids loved painting on the pink "icing"!

*Sweet piggies! Made with small, heavy-duty paper plates, googly eyes, fun foam ears, pipe cleaner mouths, and egg carton noses. Tempera paint and fun foam were my BFF's when I was teaching! Ha!

*Unfinished moose. Each kiddo glued on a felt face and googly eyes; they also got to show off writing their own names! Something we worked super hard on during the year.

*Cats! Again with the fun foam, googly eyes, and pipe cleaners! Oh, and little pink pom-pom noses!

*Muffins! Regular fun foam, glitter fun foam, and "berries" made from the punch outs of red construction paper.

*Sand castles! This was probably one of my favorite projects. Each kiddo painted on tons of white glue to a fun foam castle I cut out, poured sand all over, shook off excess and let it dry. Then they picked their craft sea shells and glued them on.

Any guesses as to who our author was? Leave it in the comments below!

Come back tomorrow to see the finished products! I'll take you on a tour of my class and reveal the author.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Hey Beads, Buttons and Bubbles readers! LP was crazy nice enough to invite me to take over her blog, so here I am! I'm Jen, a momma living near Dallas with my super amazing hubby and our three crumb snatchers. I run a blog called Life, Crafts and Whatever, where I blog about... well, life, crafts and whatever.

I've been bloggy buddies with LP for a bit. We've chatted off and on for a while, and then she won a giveaway over at my blog (and I suck and it's taking forever to get it out to her, darn handmade crafts, GRRRR) and then I won a giveaway to her etsy shop, and I totally rock the adorable necklace she sent me.

She said I could guest post about whatever. A tutorial, an introduction, she gave me free reign. Instead of writing about how I almost pulled my hair out today because my 8 year old's new thing lately is to cry and pout, or about the left over lasagna we had for dinner, I thought I'd share a tutorial with ya.

I've been wanting to make a necklace holder for a while. Mine just get tangled collect on my sunglass shelf. And honestly, I can't remember half of what I own, which means I never wear them.

This is what I started with. Nothing fancy, just a good sized frame. I really wanted more details on the frame, but for $2, I wasn't going to complain.

I then hit up Lowe's, and picked up some trim for $5 (I already had the Gorilla wood glue at home). Just a suggestion. Measure before you cut to see if you have enough wood. I cut first, then realized I only had enough wood to go on top and bottom. So one of my wood pieces has a seam on it. Oops.

I let it dry over night. Then I laid it out on my super fancy painting station (otherwise known as a bar stool with a trash bag wrapped around it)

Then I got out my spray paint that Krylon was nice enough to let me try. I usually use Kilz primer (when I remember to primer) so I was really excited to try this out. I'm all about saving steps where I can. It went on super easily, wasn't thick and gritty like Kilz can be. I did three coats, it had really great coverage.

Next I marked and drilled my holes. Most I spaced out every 1.5 inches, some I did at 2 inches (for those chunkier necklaces). I drilled the holes with my dremel. They're not pretty, it took me a few holes to realize that I needed to put the drill bit on my mark, and then turn it on. If I already had it turned on, it would just skitter and dance all over the place. Then I screwed the hooks in the holes (I picked up a pack of I think 50 hooks at Walmart for $3). My holes were a bit too big for the hook screw part, but it wasn't anything a drop of E6000 didn't fix. I admit, I need more patience with my crafts, and should have waited for the cordless drill to charge so I could use the correct size drill bit, but I make it work.

I picked up some antiquing glaze at Lowe's for $8 (they don't sell it at Home Depot, FYI). I've been dying to try this stuff out, and knew it would give my necklace display some depth and dimension.

It's super easy to use, just apply it with a stiff bristle brush, it has about a 15 minute window that you can mess with it. Make sure you get into all the nooks and crannies.

Then take a paper towel and wipe it off. You can take off a lot or a little, it's up to you.

And then it's time to hang it up! I went from this mess of forgotten, tangled jewelry...

To this!

And a couple of close-ups.

The POW necklace 8th from left is from You, Enhanced. The 3 necklace on the far right is from Fabulously Flawed.

Flower bib necklace is from my etsy shop. The 3 stone necklace to the right of my bib necklace is from Whimsy Shop.

Supply list recap:

picture frame
decorative wood trim if your frame is plain
gorilla wood glue
Krylon Dual Paint
Valspar antiquing glaze
E6000 if needed

So there you have it! Thanks again LP for letting me take over your blog! You rock, sista!


Thursday, July 21, 2011

blog changes!

Hey y'all!

Thanks to everyone who replied and offered advice, links, code and just a plethora of information and suggestions for "pretty-ing" up my blog!

If you take a look up top, you'll see I've added some pages. You'll find some of my favorite bloggers, as well as my awards & features, and parties I link to! That certainly helped clean up my sidebar and all of that "button vomit" as Jen says!

My sidebar has been rearranged and streamlined a bit, and I have a basic, blogger template (lovin' the pink) for now. I'm sure I'll be making more changes gradually, but this has been a major pain for the better part of the day today so for now, I'll leave it be!

Thanks again for all the advice and help, I hope it's a bit easier on the eyes :)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

the vacation that wasn't

You may recall that just a few days ago, I told y'all I was taking a little bloggy hiatus.

To regroup, decompress, and take a lovely, beachy vaca.

I said I would have my butt firmly planted here:

Instead my butt is firmly planted on my sofa. Sorry, no picture of that, interesting as it sounds.

Please pardon (in advance) the sarcasm. I'm a little bitter.

Here's the story of how my 5 day vacation turned into a 14 hour trip. Yes, you read that right. Start to finish. Fourteen hours. That includes travel time, my friends.

We were late leaving, because we were late getting up, because we went to sleep late because Baby C went to sleep late. Lot's of "because" I know, but it was quite the domino effect. Affect. I'm too lazy to remember which one to use right now. We left our home in (affectionately dubbed by local yokels such as us) G-Vegas around 3 pm, bound for Charleston, about four hours away.

I was really proud of Baby C. It was his first long car ride, and he was awesome! I had no idea what to expect with him being so young. Turns out that was the least of my worries.

So we make it all the way to the coast, we're topping the hill on the IOP Connector and I'm pumped to see the ocean.

That's where all that is good in the world ended. No joke. We pull into our "hotel". I use the term loosely. From the street it seemed tiny, but whatever. It's a hotel. But we pull in to the "parking area" and find that our car (a Honda Accord) barely has enough room to pull in as a Toyota Camry is coming out. It's THAT narrow. Oh, and there are exactly 12 spaces. In one row. On one side. So as you're pulling in, to the left are spaces and to the right are massive round columns. Support columns, seeing as how the "parking area" is under the "hotel". There is no sign of an office. So I stay in the car with Baby C while the hubs goes in hunt of the office. About ten minutes later he emerges and says we're all set, let's just get me and Baby C up to the room and he'll come back for our things. He's awesome like that.

So up we go to the 2nd floor and in to check out our room. At first glance it is what it is--just another non-descript hotel room. Closer inspection reveals a small flock of fruit flies holding court in the shower, the tiniest TV I've seen in a hotel since 1992 (maybe 19 inches, and that's being generous; it was 10 feet from the bed), and a grungy armchair. But it's okay. It's fine. I'm a self-proclaimed girlie-girl who sees no reason why anyone would want to go camping so maybe I'm just being particular.

Until I sit down in said grungy chair to feed the baby and my hubby goes..."Um...what's that on the ceiling...?" I was almost afraid to look up. But I did. The ceiling was lovingly decorated with mold. Powdery round colonies of mold in two foot long strips all over the whole ceiling. I wish I were joking. I'm so not. So my hubs says "okay, that's it, they're moving us to a better room or giving us our money back" and I just nod. I'm so tired and so frustrated. We had just ordered dinner to be delivered from a local restaurant because we were too tired to go anywhere. So I'm waiting for food while hubs is checking with the manager.

Ah yes...the manager. A very nice lady who inexplicably came to check out the mold in BARE FEET. I know it's the beach, but c'mon. You're the manager of a hotel. Flip-flops are fine with me, but you need shoes, mmmmk? So she goes back to the office saying she'll call us right back to let us know what she has available. Minutes after our food arrives, she calls. Says she has the same room on the first floor and she's checked it out, it's great. Fine. Except that we're starving, our food is getting cold, my baby is exhausted, WE are exhausted, and we have 2 tons of luggage to move down a floor to another room.

We make it down to the room in one trip, thanks to the hubby's determination to expedite the process and are helped to our room by another guest who sees me, arms full of baby and baby gear, and hubby struggling with the cart full of our 2 tons of crap. (no one told me just how much crap a baby needs for a vacation, but that's another post in and of itself) So the kind guest says, in his best redneck (and I'm not even joking, I'm Southern as they come and Kind Guest was red. neck. to. the. core.) "whar ye heddin'?" I say "uhhh 111" to which Kind Guest replies "ahhh y'alls next to me!" Goody. Then I feel bad because, hello, he did not have to help us. He could've just watched us run into everything trying to get to our room. But he slung his groceries up on his arms to free his hands and helped us. Thank you, Kind Guest.

We get into 111 and I'm ready to just collapse. It's hot, it's humid, Baby C spit up all over me on the way down to the room, and our food is getting colder by the minute. At this point, it is after 9 pm. We see no mold, no grungy chair. One lonely fruit fly that the hubs quickly disposes of. Fine. I just want to eat and shower and sleep. So we eat. Then we realize...we have no cell service. None. We cannot get a single text or call to go through to our parents to let them know we're there safe. Even the "complimentary wi-fi" doesn't work. So the hubs says, "hey, I'll walk down to the street and call them, you get C ready for his bath so we can all get some sleep." The calls complete, we bathe Baby C and are about to shower ourselves when...cue the "duh duh duh" ominous music...Hubby says "um, do you smell that?"

Yes, in fact, I DO smell that, the lovely potent aroma of marijuana seeping through the crack of the door from the adjoining room belonging to none other than aforementioned Kind Guest. All the rooms have the adjoining doors to be rented as "suites" apparently. Lucky us. Within a few minutes of initially noticing the scent, I feel like I've been transported back to high school with all the pot heads that smoked it every day at lunch in their cars. Now I'm not here to judge or point fingers. I don't care WHAT you do in your spare time, or in this case, in your hotel room. You can hang from the ceiling in purple polka dotted underwear for all I care. But when you're doing drugs, specifically one like this that is flowing into my room where MY BABY is, we're gonna have some problems, mmmk?

At this point, I think hubs' head is about to explode. Truly. Back to the manager he goes, only this time it's a young, long-haired lanky guy, of about 18 or 19, who looks like a pot head himself and comes in our room to see what the fuss is. To his credit, he was extremely nice, and extremely helpful. But this is where my vacation came to an end. He could not do anything to the other guest, because the smell wasn't evident outside of KG's room. Lucky us, we were getting all the fumes. He couldn't call the cops, because there's an 'expectation of privacy' that means they can't go in KG's room without smelling it, and they can't come in ours to check it out and then go check out the other room. Manager also cannot move us (again) because he has no available rooms. So he spends 15 minutes calling every hotel within a 15 minute drive to find us something else. Guess what? There were 2 places that had rooms. But each was only for that night, check out 11 am firm, and no other availability the rest of the week due to some national tennis crap going on. At this point, it's nearly midnight.

So after checking with me, and calling my dad (who graciously paid for this room as a semi-birthday gift to me), hubs informs the kid we'll be leaving immediately. So the hubby goes to get a luggage cart and I pack everything up in record time. At this point, I see a little (big) something and say to hubs, "is that a bug?" Indeed. Nice, fat cockroach. It gets away.

We are on the road by 1 am. Baby C passes out finally (bless it, he tried so hard to stay awake with us) and I guzzle a Red Bull so I can help keep hubby awake. We make it home a few minutes past 5 am, I shower (when I really wanted to boil myself in a cauldron) and we collapse into bed.

So there you have it. Fourteen nightmarish hours and I never even got my toes in the sand. Perhaps the most hilarious part of this story happened later that day when I woke up. We had Chinese food the night before and I forgot to eat my fortune cookie...which is odd, because they are my favorite part of ordering Chinese! So I'm in the kitchen and spy my cookie there on the counter. What the heck, I think, let's have a cookie. I nearly choked on my cookie laughing as I read the fortune:

"Need excitement and adventure? Take a vacation."

Sunday, July 17, 2011


Hey, y'all...

If any of you have been wondering where I've been, or what I've been doing...

the answer is--nothing crafty!


Between the deaths in our families and taking care of baby C...

I. am. so. stressed.

So I'm taking a bit of a bloggy hiatus, hopefully going to regroup and come back craftier than ever :)

This time tomorrow, my booty will be parked here:

I need a serious boost in energy, and I'm hoping this little beach vacation will do the trick!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

can you help me???

Hey, y'all!

So yesterday was my birthday!

My hubby surprised me at midnight with a birthday cupcake!

And after dinner with my parents we had a birthday cake...I'm this many (haha):

So I need some help!

I would love to make my blog a bit "prettier"...

So I was hoping some of you dear readers would share your knowledge with me. Specifically, I'd like to find a tutorial or someone who can tell me how to make 'pages'--I'd like to clean up all of my buttons over there --->
and put them on their own page.

I can't afford to pay to have anything done; so if you have a link...
if you have the instructions on your blog,
email them to me or leave the link in a comment below!

I really appreciate it :)

{sorry for the lack of fun posts lately; Baby C has been a little fussy & *I* am a little stressed!}

Friday, July 8, 2011

confessions & a new wreath!

Hey, y'all!

I'm woefully behind in my Google Reader. Current unread blog post count?

I've had the supplies to make the ca-uuuutest Scrabble-inspired door hanging since...
it's been a while.
Haven't touched it.

I have a serious Pepsi problem.
I think I've drank my weight in Pepsi just this week.

This week has been (mostly) a craft failure...
I did manage to make this wreath as a birthday gift for my Mom!

Which brings me to my last confession:

I have a wreath-making-obsession.

Thursday, July 7, 2011


I was flipping through this month's issue of Woman's Day and saw this.

Maybe it'll make you giggle too!


Happy Birthday to my wonderful Mom!

She's turning 29, version uh...2...or 3...ish.


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Super ShenanAgains Sale...extended :)

Hey, y'all!!!

I am extending my

super sale


So head on over and take advantage!


gets you 29% off your purchases!

Spend $15 or more and get a free bobby pin!
(after discount, excluding shipping)

Here are 2 new items being listed in my shop:

Vintage Bingo Number Necklaces
{relisted; other numbers available!}

{discount valid through July 10}

{are you on Twitter? Follow me: @GotShenanAgains!}


Monday, July 4, 2011

highs & lows

Hey, y'all!

I might have found a new addiction...linking up to Jen's highs & lows.
I can't resist the urge to blab. And complain.

I'm going to start with my lows, because it's been a crap week and I want to end this post on a high note.


*You may have read my blog post about my grandma, MaMa, that passed away on June 14. Two weeks to the day later, June 28, my husband's Papa George passed away. It is a devastating loss for the family. Papa George was the patriarch of the family in the truest since of the word. My father-in-law's birthday was today, and it made me even more sad for both losses. It's my f-i-l's first birthday without his dad, and just days after his passing as well. In just 10 days, it'll be my first birthday without my grandma.

*I'll be 29 in 10 days. I think I mentioned that last time too hahaha...I'm just not sure how I feel about that!

*I'm struggling getting back into the "creating" groove since little man has arrived. I hate that too, because I have some really fun ideas tumbling around and I get grumpy when I've not had any creative time.

*I never had typical teenage skin problems. Maybe an occasional pimple but not "acne". Then I hit my early 20's and developed cystic acne. If you're not familiar, it is quite painful and atrocious to deal with. I got it under control about 3.5 years ago...annnnd then I had Baby C and it's back. But on my jawline & neck this time, not my face. It's horrid. I cannot take the oral medicine I had previously since I'm nursing and topical meds aren't helping. Pair that with the poochy baby belly fat I have hanging around and my self esteem is in the crapper.


*I know what I'm about to say is gonna make a lot of mommas mad...but I realized the other day I made it through my first pregnancy (first implies there will be more than one, and I'm not too keen on that right now hahaha) without any stretch marks. I'm pretty pumped about it. Please don't hate me :)

*Little man is 9 weeks as of Wednesday. He got shots the day before and did great. Lots of crying until he was back in his carrier and then he was okay! Thank you, liquid Tylenol.

*We had dinner for my f-i-l's birthday tonight followed by sparklers. Or, according to little dude (below), "marklers". Whatever. This grown up loves some 'marklers'.

*I'll be on vacation in TWO. WEEKS. I'm seriously counting down the days. I do not, however, have any kind of clue how to pack for an infant. This could get dicey.

*My birthday is coming!!! Mark your calendars, people, I love birthday cake. And gifts.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

come see what's new!

Hey, y'all!

Don't forget I'm currently having a super sale in my shop!


gets you 29% off your purchases!

{don't forget a free gift on qualifying purchases, details here}

I have many new items to add, here are a few just added today!

Help me reach 50 sales!!!