Caramel & Brownie

This is Caramel. She is our neighbor.

And this is her baby, Brownie.

And that little white egg is baby Brownie’s “brother or sister”.

Our bird neighbors decided to make their home nest in a hanging pot near the doorway, right there in the shade of the vineyard.

Here’s a little video that my sister made of Caramel sitting on her egg. My sister named both the mother bird and baby bird, by the way.

Cute…to just see them nest in the hanging pot. This is the 5th or 6th bird nest we found around our house in the past few years.

Anticipating the 4th

Beautiful stained glass window at church,
reminding us to rejoice and sing unto the Lord

Festive wreath adorning our front door, handmade by Abby,
with Anna and Sarah’s help.
I can already imagine fireworks and the star spangled banner. 

Patriotic hand-sewn skirt, made together with my mom.
Did I tell you I am excited about Independence Day?

It’s the first time I make my own clothes! It’s not impossible! Seriously, it was so easy, you gotta get yourself a sewing machine and do it for yourself! You don’t even need a pattern, just copy off of a skirt that you like, and then sew together a new one. It only took us two days to complete it.

Mother’s Day (and free printable)

Free Printable “All About my Mom”

Do you want to know how our mother’s day went?

You probably don’t care, but I’ll tell you anyway! By the Lord’s grace, we were able to pull off a lovely mother’s day surprise even though I am terribly busy in the last stretch of the semester.

Don’t even ask me how I did this post when I am entering finals week- but I just did because I thought it was too special to keep to myself.

So, the theme was Pink. Pink ribbon, garland, (purplish-pink) flowers…and so on.

Our mom was surprised and touched by some of the “new” things we incorporated into our usual Mother’s Day breakfast. I’ll let the pictures show some of the highlights of our decor.

Pinterest has some sweet ideas for decorations too 😉

The banner and heart garland were new additions, and the jar with notes. That was two ideas I put together. I got the idea of making an “All about my Mother” card (from pinterest) where me and my sisters fill in different information about our mom, such as “my mom cooks the best….” I made my own version of it, in black and white since we don’t have a color printer. Here is the link to a printable PDF file: all about my mom. Then we put them all in the jar, and mom picked out one by one and read them aloud. It was really special. It brought laughter, smiles and fun, and she cherished those comments a lot. It’s a great idea to do for your mom’s birthday if you’d like!

My little sisters also made some really charming cards.

Oh, and the cupcakes too! We finally found a good cupcake recipe. Despite our love for baking, cupcakes were just one thing that never seemed to come out right for us. Go figure.

BUT, this time they were great! To see more details on that, and where to find the recipe, visit Jessica the Baker‘s blog!

Uplifting Songs

I wished to post these lovely songs around Easter, but here I am, posting it nearly a week later.

Yet these songs are so uplifting, that I definitely wanted you all to listen to them too! I posted some of them on my music page as well.

Make sure you raise up your volume to max, to get the full feeling of the song! It gives you the sense of what heaven will be like!

My family and I just recently discovered Songs of Praise a program by BBC, on youtube. They sing the well-known hymns in such a beautiful and professional way, it’s like a spring rain to find such quality music amongst all the displeasing contemporary so called “Christian” Rock Music that is so common in evangelical churches today. And to think that BBC a secular program, would air such heavenly music!

Please do listen, and it will surely uplift your heart and spirit! Praise the Lord that we still find this today. There are many more on youtube, but I gave you a sample of some of my favorite. Let me know how you like them.

Linked up to: A Mama’s Story, Raising Arrows, The Better Mom, These Five of Mine Plus Two

Tutorial: Make Your Own Book Cover

Remember these covers I made for our hymn books? Read the old post.
I promised to make a tutorial of how to make the book covers, so here it is, in quick simplified steps.
Hope you find it useful and fun, share it and please link back here. Thanks!

First off, gather your materials:
1. Your book
2. Wide sheets of colorful craft paper (1 for front/back cover, 1 for the spine)
My paper measured approx. 12 x 12.
3. Scissors
4. Mod Podge
5. Ruler
6. Pencil/Pen
7. Wet sponge or napkin to wipe off excess mod podge

Step 2: measure out the width of the front cover. I left about 1/2  inch. extra to fold around the cover.

Step 3: Measure the length. I left 1 1/2 inch extra to fold inside.

Step 4: Use a pencil to mark the measurements and then cut out the paper.

 Step 5: Place your paper over the front cover just to see how it looks and get an idea of how you’ll “glue” it

Step 6: Repeat steps 2-4 for the back paper that will go on the back cover. You will have two cover papers like this.

Step 7:  Apply Mod Podge with a brush on the front cover and backside of your paper

Step 8: Place firmly on the cover, and make sure you leave the extra 1/2 inches on the margins to fold in later. Then use the ruler to apply pressure and smooth out the paper so it sticks to the cover.

Step 9: You may want to do some cutting so you can fold in the paper easily, like I did in the photo. Or if you have a better method go for it! I can hear some of you saying “Hey! The inside of my book will look all ugly and patchy with the paper you fold in.” I know. If you’re picky, just glue another colorful paper on the inside to hide the “seams”.  🙂

 Step 10: Do the same “mod podge'” process for the back of the cover, and you will be nearly done.
Your book will look like this.

Step 11: Get your second matching paper for the spine. Measure and cut it to the width you prefer.

 Step 12: Fold it across the spine and “mold” it a bit.

 Step 13: Make two incisions/cuts at both ends, so you can fold in the paper when you glue it.

Step 14: Apply mod podge on the spine of your book, and the spine of your cover paper.

Step 15: Place spine of your book on top of the “spine” of  your paper,
and then apply mod podge on the flaps that will and overlap the front and back covers.

 Step 16: Use ruler to smooth the flaps on the covers and bend in the cut portions like the picture shows.
You can cut the remaining strips that come out from the spine, or fold them in also.

And finally, your book is done!