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Friday, August 31

A SWEET TIME WITH FRIENDS + FRIDAY TREATS


Happy Friday everyone! Hope you all had a good week. :) Last night, we had a very sweet time with some friends (fellow believers) that we had over for dinner. It's funny how as the host, you think that you would be the one providing the care (through food, conversations, etc.) However by the end of the night, I felt like we were all being cared for by one another. 

That's the thing I appreciate so much about being with other believers. Even though we knew one of them very well, the other one we had just met last night.  He probably wasn't even aware, but through sharing his testimony and honest experiences of how he came to really know the Lord, I felt like the Lord was speaking and caring for the rest of us sitting there.  

At the end of the night, we all just appreciated how we are all members of His Body.  We don't need to worry so much about our spiritual condition, our abilities or lack of, or anything else. As long as we stay connected to the other members, then we will receive the supply from Christ, the Head. Also many times, it is through the other members that Christ flows His care to us. =)



We'd experience Christ daily,
Him we would constantly pursue.
Our pursuing has a purpose
To build His Body is our view.

Occupy us for Your Body.
Grace supplying, You afford.
Always bearing, always caring,
By Your grace we'd be outpoured.

Grant us, Lord, a willing spirit.
To build Your Body we would strive.
By our measure we would function,
Until full grown we'd all arrive.

As the members of His Body,
Each one is now a life supply.
Serving Christ to one another,
In love, His Body built thereby.



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On our library trip a few weeks ago, E and I found the cutest little book called "We Belong Together" by Joyce Wan. Ok, yes this is not the most educational book, but the illustrations were just too adorable! Here are a few sample pages:











Wednesday, August 29

DIY ENVELOPE THROW PILLOW COVERS




One of you sweet readers requested for a tutorial on sewing these envelope pillow covers. As confusing as the instructions may appear (sorry!), these pillows are actually really easy and quick to make. Basically instead of stitching two of the same-sized fabrics together, you make the back piece 5 inches longer to create the flaps. 

 I actually first learned how to make these from The DIY Dish's website. Below is a quick step-by- step guide that I made for my 20" x 20" pillows, however I would encourage you all to watch The DIY Dish's video tutorial first. 


A = Front Piece 
B + C = Back Pieces




(For my 20" x 20" pillows, I used 3/4 yard of fabric.)


Step 1
Cut out two pieces of fabric, a front piece (A) and a back piece (B+C). You will add five inches to the length of the back piece. Cut the back piece in half to make the flaps of your "envelope" cover.  

Lay fabric B and C side by side, right side up.  One the edges where the two pieces meet, fold over 1/4" of the fabric and then 1/4" again and straight stitch all the way down. This will help create clean edges.

Step 2
Lay fabric A with the right side facing up. Place fabric B, right side facing down, on the left edge of fabric A.  With a 1/4" seam, straight stitch the edge to attach. 

Place fabric C, right side facing down, on the right edge of fabric A.  With a 1/4" seam, straight stitch the edge to attach.  

Step 3
Lay fabric C over B and straight stitch with a 1/4" seam the remaining edges to close the cover. Flip your cover right side out and you're done!   

I really love these covers, because I can wash them at any time and they make it easy for me to change out if I ever get tired of them. Hopefully these instructions weren't too confusing! Please let me know if you have any questions! :)


Have a happy Wednesday!

Monday, August 27

B&W FAMILY ROOM MAKEOVER + WINNER ANNOUNCEMENT


So over the weekend, our family room went from this....



to this...





who inspired me to make all these:




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Besides the small amount of fabric I bought for the pillows, everything else was re-purposed from something I already had. 

For my attempted bokeh art, I took down the old canvases, duct taped them together, wrapped 2 layers of batting over them (so I didn't have to paint over the originals) and then covered the entire thing with a large white fabric using a staple gun.  


Using Martha Stewart's foam pouncers, I stamped on multiple circles using black, gray, and a lighter gray acrylic paint (mixed with a fabric medium).  I then spayed a light coat of scotch guard for added protection.  



For the pillows, I found the fabrics at Joann's and made envelope covers (so that I'll be able to wash them later on).  The designs on the two white pillows were stenciled on using painter's tape and foam pouncers.  

Found out this weekend that I actually like plaid... black plaid specifically! 

I tried to make a replica of one of the pillows in A Merry Mishap's living room. Can you tell which one? ;)


There are still some small things I have left to work on, but for the most part I am pretty happy with the feeling the space creates already! 

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Finally... the winner of the second Martha Stewart Giveaway is: 
#64: Christine Cook for sharing this giveaway on Facebook!

Congratulations, Christine! I will be contacting you soon! :D

Thanks to all who participated! 


Saturday, August 25

FRIDAY [SATURDAY] TREATS



Hi friends! Hope you all are enjoying your weekend. :) I apologize that this post is coming to you all so late. E's been a little more difficult these last few days and my energy level's been at an extreme low. I did come across a few links though that caught my eye.  Hope you all enjoy them too!




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I've also been busy working on our family room and cannot be happier with the outcome! [I'll be sharing more on that next week.]  :) Here's a little clue to where I drew my inspiration. 



Also tomorrow's the last day to enter for the Martha Stewart Stencil Giveaway! The winner will be announced Monday morning. Good luck everyone! :)


Thursday, August 23

HONG KONG STYLE EGG TART


These yummy egg tarts have been a favorite of mine since childhood. A common Chinese dessert, these tarts are usually served warm and come in two different shells - flaky or crunchy.  They're filled with a sweet silky smooth egg custard filling that just melts in your mouth. 

Normally you can find these at Chinese pastry shops or restaurants that serve dim sum. However, the closest one to me is kind of far so I decided to try making some myself. I used this recipe from Allrecipes.com and made a few alterations based on what I already had.  


Ingredients
1.5 C all-purpose flour 
1/2 powdered sugar
1 stick of cold unsalted butter (cubed)
1 egg, beaten

1/4 C milk
4 eggs
1 dash of vanilla extract
2/3 C water
1/3 sugar

Directions
Preheat oven at 350. In a food processor, combine flour, sugar, and butter. Gently pulse everything together for about 30 seconds. Dump everything into a large mixing bowl. Make a well and pour in the beaten egg and vanilla. Mix together well until dough is formed. (If you notice it being too crumbly, use your hands and slowly work at the dough. The heat from your hands will slowly melt the butter to make the dough meld together.  



Roll out the dough with a rolling pin until it's about 1/4 of an inch thick. Using a cookie cutter, cut out circles and fit them into the muffin tins. Take the leftover dough, keep re-rolling the dough flat, and cut out circles until you have twelve.  By the end, you shouldn't have any dough left.  

Custard filling:


Heat water in a sauce pan. Once it boils, add the sugar and stir until it's fully melted. Set aside and let it cool to room temperature. 

Beat the four eggs in a bowl and strain it through a sieve into the sauce pan containing the sugar water. You want just the liquidy yolk seeping through. The whites that are still solid will be left behind.  Add the vanilla extract into the sauce pan and stir. Strain it through the sieve one more time into another bowl.  You should be left with 1.25 C of custard mix.  

Spoon the mixture into the crusts and bake for 25 min. on the medium rack.  


Carefully transfer the tarts onto a plate and let them cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.  Enjoy!


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Just a reminder that the Martha Stewart Stencil Giveaway ends this Sunday! Enter here if you haven't already! :)



COME "TRY ON" GLASSES!


This is a sponsored post written for GlassesUSA.com. All opinions are 100% mine. 

Shopping online use to scare me. It was hard for me to commit to something that I haven't seen in person. However, lately I've noticed that many businesses have been working on making it a more positive experience. 

When I was contacted by GlassesUSA.com, I really didn't expect it to be much different than any other glasses site. I started browsing around and noticed that they offered a lot of cheap eyeglasses, including both fashion and prescription glasses. However, what really impressed me was this cool virtual mirror feature that allows you to "try on" the glasses before purchasing them. How cool is that right?! You can upload your own photo, use their webcam feature, or use a model that they provide.  




I know for me, whenever I'm about to get a new pair of eyeglasses, I take forever a long time to decide.  So it's nice that I can "try on" as many as I want on my own time and not have to worry about annoying my optician. OR worry about E throwing tantrums around me because his mom  just can't make up her mind. o.O

I haven't personally ordered from them yet since I just got my glasses recently, but I'll definitely be keeping them in mind for the future. Right now they have a few promotions going on that I thought you all might be interested in:

  • Take 15% off your entire order amount + FREE shipping (orders over $50). Code: FS15
  • Take 10% off any order of prescription glasses. Code: Blog10

They are also offering a generous refer-a-friend program where you can earn $30 with each first purchase they make and use it towards your next purchase. 

Their 100% satisfaction guarantee ensures you’ll get a product that you’re completely satisfied with. A full refund will be provided if you receive a defective product (ie. glasses made incorrectly, wrong prescription, etc.) If you just don't like your glasses you can easily exchange them for any other product, receive store credit in full or a 50% refund.

You can also find them on Facebook or follow them on Twitter to stay updated on their latest discounts. 

Wednesday, August 22

20 THINGS I WANT TO TELL ENGAGED AND NEWLYWED WOMEN



Hi friends! :) Yesterday something unbelievable happened. After weeks and months of triple digit weather, we woke up to a GORGEOUS 78 degrees with light rain! I know... absolutely crazy right?? So please forgive me for just popping up now... yesterday was too beautiful for us not to enjoy. We spent the morning at the library, took a walk outside, and then came home to bake some yummy egg tarts. I'll have to share about that tomorrow.  ;)

So last night, I stumbled upon Patty Laurel's blog and saw this encouraging post by Grace Full Mama. I've actually read/heard a lot of these tips before, but have never seen them put together so nicely. Hopefully this will serve as a healthy reminder for all of us. :)


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1. Marriage is made up of two good forgivers. Because every marriage is made up of two sinners. (Romans 3:23)

2. At some point, you will have to learn that life isn’t all about you. (Philippians 2:3)
3. Don’t listen to women that tell you that passion fades…it doesn’t have to! (um…all of Song of Solomon)
4. Don’t give up. Love never fails. (1 Cor. 13)
5. He wants a kind wife, not a maid or another mother. Be nice. (Galatians 5:22-23)
6. Give your husband the gift of your respect.  He needs it more than you know. (Ephesians 5:33)
7. Be mindful of your expectations.
8. Honor the Lord above all things. Colossians 3: 17
9. Find your worth and security in the Lord, and don’t look to your husband to meet all of your needs.
10. Be very careful about reading romance novels, they set you up for an unrealistic view of romance.
11. Real romance is finding that one spot in the crook of his arm to snuggle into, that shared look over the dinner table when the kids are acting crazy, and the way he fixes the leaky sink when he is dog-tired after work.
12. Love is about relationship.  The more I love my husband, and seek a relationship with him, the less critical and duty-bound I become.  It is similar to my relationship with God.
13. Be thankful for the husband you have. Accept him as he is, not for what you want him to be.
14. Don’t compare!! Don’t buy into the game of comparing him with anyone else’s husband.
15.The Biblically “normal” marriage is filled with joy, connection, laughter, and peace.  It’s not free of hurt feelings and conflict, but they know how to process their pain with one another so that they live more often in a meadow than at the scene of a train wreck.  This is not the average marriage, but it normal – -because it is a visible display of Jesus’ relationship with His bride (Ephesians 5:22-33).
16. Your marriage is a testimony! 
17. Pray for your marriage. Pray hard.
18.I’ve heard that is gets better with age.  I have to say in my short {13 year} experience, that is so true.
19. Where there is God, there is always hope. Even for the most broken marriages. “With God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26)
20.Marriage is commitment and sacrifice. But it’s also the best, most wild ride you will ever have with your best friend.

Friday, August 17

NEARER EACH DAY TO ME + FRIDAY TREATS


We're finally halfway through August which means that fall's just around the corner. (silent cheer - yayy!) I am so ready for summer to be over and can't wait to pull out my cardigans and hoodies and all things cozy and warm. :)

Before I sign off for the weekend, I wanted to leave you all with this sweet song before sharing my Friday Treats.  This week I really appreciated the Lord's faithfulness in so many situations around me. Even though we can't see Him or sometimes sense He is there, He is... right inside of us... making Himself known to us through all our experiences (both positive and negative).  He is there constantly loving us, supplying us and meeting us wherever we are.  We just need to turn to Him and trust in Him.

Nearer each day to me,
Dearer each day to me,
This Person inside me is
Becoming reality.
Saving me, loving me,
Faith and hope giving me.
You're all the world to me Jesus, my Lord.

Even when faith is small,
When there's no hope at all,
I hear Him say to me,
Trust in Me and you'll see,
That I'll supply all your needs,
If only you will believe.
All anxious doubts will cease,
While trusting in Me.

Source: http://www.hymnal.net/hymn.php/ns/199#ixzz23m3RclKn


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Thursday, August 16

DIY STENCILED TABLE RUNNER + GIVEAWAY!



Hi everyone! I am SO excited about today's giveaway and know that many of you have been waiting for this one. ;) Since it relates to today's DIY, I thought I'd share this little project with you all first.





Remember those old linen curtains that I re-purposed into this wreath, reupholstered chair, and laundry curtains? Well I managed to squeeze out ONE more project. =D



After a little bit of sewing and stenciling with the Martha Stewart Craft's Arabesque laser-cut stencils, their multi-purpose acrylic paint with some of their tintable fabric paint medium, and a foam roller (I found the rollers to work a lot better and faster than the stencil brushes)...


I'm loving how our little runner has turned out! 


I re-used the buttons that were originally on the curtains and sewed them to the ends of the runner to add some weight.





For some added protection, I also sprayed on some scotch guard and am hoping that this little runner will last us a while. :)



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Today I'll be giving away the second set of the Martha Stewart Stencil Package to another one of my dear readers! The stencil set included is one of my favorites!






How gorgeous are these designs?? 



via



To enter, just follow the simple instructions using the tool below. This giveaway will end next Sunday, August 26th. I will announce and notify the winner via email on the 27th. Good luck everyone! :)


Monday, August 13

EZ STRIP QUILT




Happy Monday friends! As I mentioned last Friday, I've been busy with a lot of sewing projects. This second quilt that I finished was for my parents' 30th anniversary. The one I made for them in college had been slowly falling apart, and I've been wanting to make them another one. Now that they finally received it over the weekend (sorry it's a month late!), it's safe to share it with you all.. ;)


Like my EZ scrap quilt, this one's also 45" x 60" (crib-size).  My parents like to keep theirs on the sofa as a lap blanket, so I didn't need it to be too big.  




For the white borders and the backing, I used a flat sheet again to keep the quilt soft on the underside.  


For the binding, I just used the leftover scraps, cut them into 2.5" wide strips and sewed them all together. 


So yeaahhhh... I think I'm good on quilts for a while. ;) Hope you all enjoyed this simple quilt pattern!

Be back soon with a stenciled project I just completed for our dining room. :)

FAMOUS FOOTWEAR: BOGO 1/2 OFF + 15% - 20% OFF

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Famous Footwear for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.


FF-BiggestVictory-GIF_300x250(1).jpg

 

For large families, back-to-school shopping can be a huge headache for most parents. Famous Footwear is hoping to help make it a little bit easier. Right now they are running a Buy One, Get One 1/2 off + 15% - 20% off promotion going on now through August 18th.  

 

Known for its wide variety of shoes at affordable prices, Famous Footwear offers hundreds of brand names - like Adidas, Puma, Skechers, Converse, and Sperry - and thousands of styles. They also provide their customers an easy shopping experience by keeping their stores from being too overwhelming. If you can't find the shoe you want at the store, they'll gladly offer free home delivery. If you're shopping online, you can avoid shipping prices by having the option of in-store pickup. I personally LOVE that. That alone would already convince me to shop there more.

 

 

By the way, do you see those super cool green Pumas for kids up there? They are currently $25 (that's a 50% discount)! If E were older, I would have totally gotten those for him! I'm almost tempted to get them for myself. ;)

 

Right now, Famous Footwear is offering their Rewards members (or those who sign up) an extra 20% discount and their non-members a 15% discount on top of the BOGO 1/2 off promotion. 

 

Click here to join their Rewards program:

  • Earn 1 point for every $1 you spend in-store or online
  • Accumulate points to earn certificates up to $100 a year 
  • Discount offer just for signing up 
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So make sure to print off the BOGO + 15% off Famous Footwear Coupon and sign up for their Rewards program to receive the maximum discount! Offer ends August 18th. Happy shopping everyone! :)

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