Sunday, May 31, 2009


How did we go from this...

to this in the blink of an eye?

Time really does fly when you're having fun.

Congrats and I love you!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Wanna Win Something?

Ok, so some of you are angry at my extended absence and my teaser message that turned out to be a little premature. Here's a little something to express my apologies...

Over at A Soft Place to Land, Kimba has a giveaway going on with Lewa's Designs. If you blog about the giveaway, you are guaranteed to win one of these three little wall vinyls in your choice of color.

I think the swirly bird is a cutie, so that's the one I'll be choosing. If you blog, get in on this action. How often are you GUARANTEED to win?

And if you put her badge on your sidebar, you get to pick two! I don't know anything about badges and putting stuff on my sidebar, though, so I'll settle for 1 little swirly bird. Hopefully you are more technical than me.

After you post, email with a link to your blog post along with your choice of decal, color desired, name & mailing address. Easy peasy!

Love ya'll and I'll be back soon...seriously.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Stay Tuned

The closet blogger is back! I'll be updating soon...

Monday, February 23, 2009

New Old Stuff

Despite my recent acute case of "pro-craft-ination" (procrastination of the craft variety), I got several odds-and-ends projects completed this weekend. More out of the necessity to have all the crafty goodness off my dining room table than anything else. Let me tell ya, I really need a craft room. Can I get an "Amen" ladies?

A few weeks ago I did some project hunting at GW (that's Goodwill for anyone not in the trash-to-treasure loop). I spotted this gem and instantly saw her potential.

Yes, she had seen better days, but I had faith that her best days were yet to come. (I should also mention that there was some odd Little House on the Prarie-esque scene in the frame part when I found her. True to my overzealous personality I had already taken that out before I remembered to take the before picture. I really wish ya'll could have seen it. It was something.)

I had been wanting a chalkboard for the kitchen for quite a while. I knew that the perfect opportunity would present itself eventually, and here it was for just $4.99. With the ledge to hold the chalk and eraser, and the hooks to hold the hubby's keys, I knew I had found my chalkboard destiny.

Here she is after a few coats of spray paint on the frame (I started with Ivory and switched to Heirloom White. I'm now in L.O.V.E. with Heirloom White.) and a couple of coats of chalkboard paint which I sprayed right onto the frame backing since it was a nice smooth surface.

I am spastic about how it turned out. It was hung and ready to announce the menu for our guests Saturday night. Nick thought it was a little overboard to add the welcome message, but they noticed it right away and loved it. Making your guests feel special is always important, no matter how casual the gathering!

During the same trip to GW, I picked up this little bird...which turned out to be a duck. I didn't notice until I sprayed him with a little Heirloom White. Really brought out his bill. Oh well, ducks need love too!

Quack, quack.

The "H" was one of the golden letters from Hobby Lobby. What the powers that be at Hobby Lobby think a person is going to do with a gold letter is beyond me, but no matter...a little spray paint and she's looking good!

I have one more finished project, but I really need to ellipticize tonight so it'll have to wait until tomorrow.

Good night and God bless!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Look at me go

For those keeping count, I've posted 3 times in the last 2 days.

Oh, make that 4.

I'm on a roll now...

Beautiful Life update

You think I've fallen off the wagon, don't you? You can admit it. I don't really blame you, because I certainly haven't kept you informed about my progress in my quest for a beautiful life.

Let's just say that January got off to a slow start with my healthy living goal. But toward the end of the month, I got it in gear and started making healthier food choices and became reacquainted with my lonely elliptical machine. Yesterday I picked up the Abs Diet book and am excited about working some of those concepts into my regimen.

February has been a good month for my goals. Not only have I continued on with the healthy living changes, but I've been bitten by the organization bug and completed several projects that were crying out for my attention. First order of business was my computer area. This little space gets so junked up! Here's what it looked like before I tackled it -

I blame this mess for my extended blogging absences. Who would want to sit here for any extended period of time?

Here's the after -

Everything has a place and I'm able to focus on the task at hand since I'm not paranoid about the mountain of junk falling out and burying me. Sweet peace.

The other thing I was able to accomplish (by sacrificing a precious Sunday afternoon nap) was to organize the bookshelf in the office. I don't have a before, but suffice it to say that it was scary. The books were on the shelf willy-nilly and it stressed me out to even look in their direction, much less try to find one to read in that chaos!

Here's the after -

I'm a visual person, so I tend to remember what a book looks like. It's very easy for me to locate a book in my new color coded system, and it gives order to the shelf, which brings me serenity and joy!
I also spruced up the master bedroom with help from my close, personal friend the Nester (whom I have never met and who doesn't know me from the man in the moon). See it here.

I have miles to travel on this organizing journey, but at least I'm on the road. I'm committed to carrying each new goal with me into the following months and making them a new way of life, not just a phase to be abandoned quickly.

Head on over to The Inspired Room for your daily dose of inspiration. Seeing other's successes really motivates me!

Have a beautiful day!

And the Oscar goes to...

Dana for Best Use of 10 minutes! Ya'll, the Nester is having a party and I'm invited.

Ok, so everyone is invited, but I'm choosing to pretend that this is an intimate gathering of the Nester's close, personal friends.

Yes, I am delusional.

So the Nester's party is the finale of the 10 minutes to a room you'll love series she's been doing for the past month. Go back and read the tips if you haven't been following along as she goes. It's all simple stuff that can magically transform a room. Our master bedroom is the room that really needed the magic...

Now, let me say that it doesn't look quite this bad all the time, but on Wednesday night, this was what I was looking at. Nothing about this room said, "Come in, close, personal friend of the Nester and relax awhile," or "This is where the proverbial magic happens," or even "Come in and rest your weary bones". Since your bedroom should be a place of refuge (not refuse), peace, and romance, I set about to make small changes with big impact.

First, I commited to some lamps. I've been trying to find the perfect lamps for our master for quite some time and it took a cyber-kick-in-the-pants from the Nester to finally just buy some stinkin' lamps for crying out loud!

Second, I cleared all the C.R.A.P. off the nightstands. Why was there WD-40 on the nightstand in the first place? Instead, I put books, a decorative box, and a hand-blown glass vase with greenery in it. much better!

Finally, I made the bed. I know, I know. I'm a trailblazer. All kidding aside, this makes the room look 100 million times better. Why don't I do it? Your guess is as good as mine.

I've still got some improvements that need to be made in the master like adding a chair and FINALLY getting some window treatments up. But it was so encouraging to see what just a few changes could do to the feel of the room.

Last night I turned off the overhead light and turned on the lamps. Nick walked in and literally did a double take. He said, it looks like a totally different room.

Thanks, Nester.

Your close, personal friend.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

8th Grade Was Rough

Have I ever told ya'll about my most embarrassing moment? No? Well, it was eighth grade. An entire year can't be considered a moment, you say? I would have to disagree.

It all started in the summer before school started. There was a cute new boy in town named Jeremy. Imagine my delight to find cute, new Jeremy at the YMCA pool when my girlfriends and I arrived one hot day. He was a sight for sore eyes for a gaggle of teen girls who usually shared the pool with housewives striving for a perfect tan. Since I'm such a wallflower and all, I paraded myself and my little bikini straight to the high dive.

Clearly I suffered from a serious lack of self-confidence.

So after executing a perfect dive (at least in my mind), I climbed out of the pool and came face-to-face with my crush, cute, new Jeremy. I flirted with CNJ for a few minutes and turned to return to my friends. As I walked toward them, my friend Kristin got a horrified look on her face and screeched, "Your NIPPLE!" That's right, folks...apparently the force from the Louganis-esque dive had caused my cute little triangle bikini to shift on my nonexistant chest and there for CNJ and all the sun-worshipping housewives to see was my nipple. Let me assure you that the one body part I wasn't trying to flaunt was that one.

Props to CNJ for not letting on that he noticed anything amiss, but there was NO WAY that he didn't!

I'll be back soon to follow up with 8th grade humiliation number two. I know you're on pins and needles...

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Valentines Fun

Hey. It's me Dana.
Remember me?
The author of this blog.

Well, when my own Dad mentioned that I needed to update the blog, I thought I better get on it. I could go into how we got a new computer and we have spent the last week moving all the digital photos off of the old one. I could explain that I was waiting to post on my new computer because it just took too long on the old one. I could get really detailed and explain that it took approximately 97 minutes to upload one stinkin' photo to the blog on my old computer. But let's face it, they're all just excuses. I'm back now and that's what counts.

So, who loves Valentines Day? I could take it or leave it personally. I mean it's a fine "holiday" and all, but I'm with the contingent that says that everyday should be the day to make your loved one feel special. Nick is really great at this. It kind of makes it hard to top the way he treats me every day. This year he had said he was really excited about the gift he got excited that he couldn't wait until Saturday to give it to me. So when I got home on Friday afternoon, there was a bag from a trendy little boutique on our kitchen table. In it was a dress that I had admired in the shop window a couple of times. I would have never bought the dress for myself, because...well, I just don't spend a lot on clothes. Don't get me wrong, I spend a little on a lot of clothes, but not a lot on one item. This was so unexpected and thoughtful. It was like a scene from one of my favorite movies, Pretty Woman. You remember when Richard Gere gave Julia Roberts the gorgeous gown? It was like know, minus the prostitution and the swanky penthouse suite.

Some good friends and I had planned a fun afternoon for our husbands for V-day. So I sent Nick off at 2:30 dressed for the evening and with a cryptic clue to meet "Chris" at a spa. Nick was sweating all the way there trying to determine if "Chris" was going to be a male or female masseuse. At the spa, he discovered that he was meeting our friend Chris along with Nathan and Brandon. Relieved that he wouldn't be getting a rub down, they got their next clue and heading to a jewelry store to meet up with another friend, Michael, and get a packet of clues for the rest of the afternoon. There were several hysterical activities that they had to complete and each step required a group photo. Suffice it to say, the pictures at the end of the evening were priceless. The boys had so much fun and met up with the girls at the final destination, Cabana. If you haven't been to Cabana, go! The food is wonderful, and the atmosphere is really fun. We all had a blast and indulged in awesome food, great wine and amazing friendship!

(Thanks Mom and Dad for watching the mini's!)

Hope ya'll had a magical Valentines Day with your beloved, too!

XOXO ~ Dana

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Harper's Awake!

Hopefully ya'll are keeping up with Kelly's blog and updates on Harper, but if you aren't...


God is so good and merciful and wonderful and sovereign...
I'm overwhelmed and crying such happy tears for this family. I cannot imagine the feeling they must have had to finally see their baby's beautiful eyes.

Kelly has had several people email her to say that they received Christ since following Harper's story. Hallelujah!

What a bright spot on such a dreary day!!!

Love to you all...

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

You Tell Me

Is it bad that Nick and I are teaching our children dog tricks?

I mean she was having fun. I cross my heart.
Don't judge me.

By the way, Ellie has a mohawk.

P.S. It is my sincere hope that Kelly will someday be teaching Harper to do doggie tricks. Please continue to pray for this family and sweet, sweet's working!

Monday, January 19, 2009


Good morning, friends. I have a very special request. I need for ya'll to get on your knees in prayer for a precious little baby named Harper. I don't know Harper or her parents, but I have been periodically checking in on her mom's blog for the past several months. Harper's parents, Kelly and Scott, struggled with infertility for several years and then by the grace of God, conceived this little girl. Now Harper is very sick and they don't know exactly what is wrong with her yet. This family has been on my mind for the past several days, so I went to Kelly's blog this morning to check on them and this is what I found. I am heartbroken for them. They are the cutest little couple and all of Kelly's posts center around the excitement they experienced waiting for Harper's arrival.

Our God is a big and mighty God. I know that he can heal Harper and give Kelly and Scott the dream they have dreamt for years. Please pray.

Visit Kelly's blog so you can go back and follow their journey from the beginning.

Have a blessed day!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Ugly Christmas Sweater Fight Night

Here are some pics from our recent Ugly Christmas Sweater themed UFC Fight Night. I think these speak for themselves, but just in case they don't...

Nick picked out my sweater. It was pretty hideous. You can't really see it, but I was wearing a thin headband and blue eyeshadow, too. Nick is always over the top. You give him a theme and he will run with it. He was not satisfied with the tackiness of his original choice, so he tasked our friend Glenn with choosing another UCS from the wide world of Goodwill. This is what he got. It is a woman's shirt and has shoulder pads...enough said.

Here are our friends Adam and Alycia. Alycia was really in the spirit. She actually paid full price for her new UCS. (Note to the sweater industry: Shame on you! There is no excuse for continuing to manufacture such offensive holiday wear.)

This is Glenn. If we were giving awards, Glenn would win in every category. Not able to find the perfect UCS, Glenn (an engineer, I should note) set out to create his own. He actually sewed that Santa onto a Bill Cosby-esqe sweater he found at Goodwill. And please, please note the socks. Everyone that saw Glenn said, "Dude, the socks make it!" (That little guy is Glenn's mini-me, Cole.)

It was an entertaining night to say the least. Thanks to our fun friends that participated - we had some slackers that didn't.

P.S. My hubby wants me to tell ya'll that the only thing better than the sweaters was Rampage Jackson's knockout punch...yeah, that's exactly what I was thinking.


Wednesday, January 7, 2009

A Look Back

Rhoda over at Southern Hospitality is having a soiree! What? You don't know Rhoda? What rock have you been hiding under? Rhoda is fabulous. She reminds me of Paula Deen, but instead of cooking up delicious food, she cooks up scrumptious decor. Rhoda's party is an opportunity for us to look back at the projects we completed in 2008. Before and after. There's just one teensy little problem...I don't have before pics for most of my projects. I wasn't in full blogging mindset yet, people! I'll do better in 2009...promise. Hopefully, Rhoda won't mind if I crash the before and after party with just my afters!

I'll start with the couple of projects I do have befores for. First up is the ornament topiary that was featured on Kimba's Favorite Things roundup post following the Open House. I am still blushing! So flattering to be recognized by the know from A Soft Place To Land...go there at once. But hurry back for my other projects!
This junk...

...became this. (Ugh, this pic is dark...see the pic over at Kimba's)

This next project was for Beanie's nursery. I found this lovely lady on Good Friday at the flea market. It was a good Friday indeed! I was on a mission to find a dresser/changing table and this sweetie fit the bill perfectly. She's long and deep. Perfect for all that changing table mama's know what I'm sayin'. There was just one issue...she was blue. And since Beanie was missing some, um, equipment that would have called for a blue dresser, I set to work on the makeover...

I liked her sexy legs!

Here she is, all fresh and white and nursery-ish! See her? There...behind the little people. (I tried to take a pic tonight without the munchkins, but the lighting is terrible and you can't see how fresh she really looks. So this not-at-all-recent one will have to do.)

Here's a look at her pretty glass knobs. (See the crap-o lighting.)

And here are those gorgeous gams...

Staying in the nursery, here is a peek at the window "mistreatment" in there. Ala the Nester, I found two complementary fabrics and some kicky trim to tie it together, busted out the glue gun (that's right), and whipped up some deliciousness while watching an episode of Real Housewives of New York (I'm hanging my head in shame).

In the nursery we have a monogrammed lamp shade. I love having a lamp in the nursery, so we don't have to use the overhead lighting. If I could, I would only use lamps! I found a lamp that wasn't being used and went to work. I'll try to tap out a tutorial on this project in the coming weeks.

Big sister got a mono-shade too!

Again in the, it's so true that babies really take over your world! I wanted something over the crib that was a little different. I got a large letter from JoAnn's and duplicated the dust ruffle stripe on it. This was a tedious and time consuming project because of the size of the stripes. But it really turned out so great and I think it makes the room.

Truthfully, the nursery, in and of itself, is a 2008 completed project. Before it became a nursery, it was being used for overflow storage and Ansley's large toys. When we got pregnant (we meaning me) and determined that we (we meaning I) didn't want to give up the guestroom, this room became the nursery by default. I don't have before pics because...well, frankly it was scary. The walls were plain-jane, cream. No offense to anyone named Jane. There was a mess of junk scattered all around. I don't need photos of things like that lurking around to remind me of darker days! So I chose a color (that is pretty scary when it's going on the wall) and we painted. Then my sweet husband and my sweet FIL put up the beadboard and chair rail (that's not really a chair rail). The result is pretty dramatic, but that's what I was going for.

I created personalized plaques for the girls' doors as well. This is a pic of Ansley's but Ellie has one that is almost identical...well, except for the letter, of course!

Well, I think that about does it. I hope to complete so many more projects in 2009. I feel fulfilled and productive when I am creating things. I hope that you will make it a point to create a beautiful life for yourself and your family in the coming year!

Until we meet again~

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Can you believe it?

I ran.

I am not even kidding.

Ask Jill. She was there.

And no, Mom, no one was chasing me.

I am weak. I gave into the hype. I'm a sucker for peer pressure.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Beautiful Life

Ok, ya'll. Now I'm not really one for New Year's resolutions. I mean, let's face it, I have very little will-power and usually no real motivation to keep them. But this year at The Inspired Room, Melissa is setting some "key word goals" that describe the kind of life she wants to lead in 2009. Since I like the idea, and certainly don't have a better one, I decided to follow suit. I hope that you will join me, but if you don't, why don't you resolve to help me be accountable. Alright, here we go...
How it works: I've set twelve goals - one for each month. These are very general...nothing too restricting. I don't like to be restricted. It's so...restricting. So each day I will try to incorporate as many of these goals as possible into my activities, focusing mainly on the current monthly goal. I know it sounds confusing - I was confused after reading Melissa's post and she has a much better way with words. I think it will become more clear after seeing the goals - here are mine:

January: Healthy Living (such a cliche, I know, but I've gotta do it!)
February: Organization
March: Enrichment - learning something new
April: Solitude/Faith - regular quiet times
May: Family
June: Friends
July: Finances
August: Contentment
September: Routines/Anti-Procrastination
October: Hospitality
November: Gratitude
December: Giving
Occasionally I will post about how I am incorporating these into my everyday life. But don't worry, I will still be regaling ya'll with tales of hands that smell like poop, wildly inappropriate baby wear and other magical moments from our little life!
Love to love ya'll!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!!!

2008 was amazing for our little family. We were blessed with sweet Ellie's arrival, health, and prosperity. I pray for each of you a 2009 full of abundant blessings. Whether the economy turns around or not, whether the new administration is better or worse, if your hope is in Jesus Christ and the peace he brings, you will never be disappointed!

Celebrate each day!!!