Tag Archive | create

These are a few of my Favorite Things

I absolutely, positively, without a doubt, LOVE SUNFLOWERS! I have a dear teaching friend that helps feed my obsession by driving all over the Texas countryside with me to take pictures of the fields when they are in full bloom. This year, due to the rains we had in early spring, the blooms were exquisite!sunflower 1

Each one is beautifully unique!

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This past weekend, I was able to go on a brief getaway to the coast. It was a great escape from the everyday ‘stuff’ and I couldn’t help but feel a wave of sadness wash over me when driving back home yesterday.

When packing for a beach vacation, it takes a lot of planning. Of course, the no-brainer is to throw in a couple of bathing suits, cover-ups, and flip-flops; but strategically packing the unfinished craft projects that you want to complete can be a bit tricky. On this particular getaway, I had decided that I wanted to sew some canvas bags. I had been buying coordinating fabric for this particular project and was super excited about trying out a pattern I had found online.

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I did tweak the pattern a bit, but for a great step-by-step tutorial on sewing tote bags Amanda from www.crazylittleprojects.com is your gal. I can’t wait to try her messenger bag pattern next.

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Just think of all of the possibilities! Beach Breaks – they’re not just for sand and sun anymore!

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With love,

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praying for JWR

The Days that Time Worked in my Favor

At the beginning of any extended vacation time  from work, there is a spring in my step, an unrealistic to-do list of Pinterest projects to try, and a feeling that the world is at my feet because time is on my side. I can easily organize the responsibilities of laundry, cooking, and cleaning with a lighthearted attitude.  I am so sorry  for those that  have not been able to feel that luxury of ‘time’ every once in a while because the opportunity to refresh is so important for one’s health.FullSizeRender (3)

This weekend, my husband surprised me with a road-trip for my birthday and our anniversary. Our definition of road-trip is: get in the car and drive to some undetermined destination.

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We spent two days driving to small towns, roaming around, talking, and laughing. Letting go is good and we both know that we have got to take these mini-vacations more often. We have decided however, that Siri will always travel with us in case we need assistance with gas station locations, hotel choices, and restaurant recommendations (that is a whole other story and one that we will laugh about together for years to come).

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With Love,

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Cropping…The Greatest Invention Since Sliced Bread

Seriously, whenever I take a picture, I look at it afterwards and wonder how I could even hit ‘click’ (or push that little circular doodaddy when I am using my phone because I don’t even own a real camera anymore) without seeing all of the distractor factors that take away from the image that I want people to really focus on. I get so frustrated with myself for not being more observant beforehand. For example, yesterday I stepped outside to take a picture of our American flag hanging alongside my father-in-law’s  flag (as he was a Vietnam Vet). Even though I see  the front of my house at least four times a day, I  guess that I have been oblivious to the few remaining Christmas light hooks on the gutters or the poison ivy vines struggling to stretch across to a high traffic area where they can wreak havoc on  ‘people with sensitive skin’until I witnessed it through the eye of the camera lens.So, of course, I have to take my frustrations to a whole other level because I just can’t let sleeping dogs lie (or is it lay?).

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My dog, Reeses enjoying a nap on my Bandana Wreath Project

Wouldn’t it be awesome if we could ‘crop’ out the the parts of our lives that have been awkward or embarrassing to us? We could just go home each day and view all of the events, then tweak them by cropping the visuals or clicking on delete for spoken words that spill out without careful thought! That’s right, just crop out those distractor factors or daily regrets. I know that I would certainly feel better if I didn’t have to spend time at the end of each day reflecting about its events.

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2016 High School Graduation Cake – Sweet Girl is Baylor Bound in the fall 

This morning, I delivered my final graduation cake for the spring of 2016. I can’t lie, it felt wonderful to wash the icing residue out of my hair and off my face before I drove off to deliver it. #2jobsrenoughjobs!

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Graduation Celebration following Church Services

Now it is time to wrap up my last week at school for the summer. Phew! I have so many unfinished projects around the house that I know my next couple of weeks off will fly.

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Cupcakes for a Cutie! Senior 2016

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This responsible young lady ordered her own cake and was so appreciative when I delivered it to her. I love working with such gracious, thoughtful young adults.

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Fortunately, I didn’t have to make any of my deliveries by boat this year. 2016 will go down in the books as the year of Flash Floods in Texas!

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 Whoo – hoo! It’s time to put my handy-dandy mixer away for a week, and celebrate a clean kitchen.

For the remainder of the afternoon, I will be kicking my feet up, relaxing with my slippers on (even in Texas during the month of June, my feet get cold), and watching the Hallmark Movie Channel!

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With Love,

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It’s All About That Cake (’bout that cake)

If you were to look up the definition of  ‘Nervous Wreck’ in the dictionary, I am quite certain that you would see my picture as a visual representation and it would probably even have an unflattering caption underneath about my physical responses to stress. I  really can’t explain why – I grew up surrounded by a loving and supportive family. I did well in school and got along fine with my peers. But, in spite of it all, I can remember as far back as third grade and attempting to hide my anxiousness that was so extreme, it made me sick to my stomach. I have tried every remedy known to man to relieve my stress to no avail; so for me, it continues to be a daily struggle.

 

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Go figure – instead of avoiding situations that cause anxiety, I seem to select hobbies that have the word ‘stressful’ written all over them; for example, cake decorating. The challenge of taking on new cake designs is like an obsession for me. This past weekend, I had multiple cake orders  and each one had a special meaning to me!

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I  managed to survive and get all of the cakes completed and delivered to their correct locations with time to spare, but going back to ‘work’ on Monday was a killer.

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I really did feel like I had just played in a ballgame that had gone into extra innings! Then Tuesday rolled around, my kitchen was clean, and I had already started thinking about the orders that I have for the upcoming weekend.

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 Welcome back, stress! Good-bye clean kitchen!

With Love,

sunflower

Storms and Showers

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Creatively Blue

‘Tis the season for showers – showers other than rain showers. I am talking about baby and bridal showers. If you happen to decorate cakes as another source of income like me, shower season is a busy, busy time.

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When there is busyness, no time can be wasted on the inconveniences of Mother Nature. So, what’s a gal living in central Texas to do when there are cakes in the oven baking and it is storming outside, but she desperately wants to  re-paint some much neglected wooden frames? Just sitting around waiting for the oven timer to go off is not an efficient use of time; therefore, it makes perfect sense to set up a painting station right on the living room floor. It would be ridiculous to do it at the kitchen table because of all of the cake items in the way. Besides, it is easier to watch episodes of Fixer Upper in the living room.

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Life is about seizing the moments, not waiting for storms to subside and oven timers to ding!

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The Blessing of Youth

Each day, I have three tutoring groups with students ranging from third grade to fifth grade in preparation for the standardized testing that is looming over us. . I find my greatest  pleasure in teaching is when I am able to release myself from the stress of what the expectations are by standardized testing. I love getting to know the quirks of each and every one of the students, and really reliving what is important to them at this time period in their lives. Don’t get me wrong…getting to know the students and building that relationship with them is not about lowering the academic expectations. In order to grow our children to be all that they can be, we cannot and must not lower the academic standards, for they are far more capable of achieving goals than we give them credit for.  After all, our children are the ones that are in control of our future. 

“While I Still Can Dance…I will dare to open the vaults of my heart and mind and express my feelings for others. And I welcome others to share their hearts and minds with me.”

This weekend, as I took a step back from the world of education, I was anxious to complete a couple of projects around the house. The hubby did a great job of cleaning out the garage, so I really felt obligated to get some things organized myself.Attach0

Here is the thing about husbands though…they know that they can’t throw anything away as long as you are within a ten-mile radius of the house. So, while I was out delivering a cake for a Quinceanera, that stinker threw away some wood that I had gotten at Home Depot for a new project. Lately, it seems that one of our favorite games to play is “Trash-To-Treasure Tug-of-War”. I really need to put a tracking system on him when I leave the house, so I can monitor what he is getting into.

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Sweet Reflections

Today,  I am not reflecting on how special my relationships are with my husband, children, family, and friends. As superficial as this may sound, I am reflecting on sweet treats to eat!  Actually, I am not much of a sweet tooth – I’ll take chips and dips over cakes and candies any day. I do however, love to bake cakes and decorate them. About ten years ago, my dear friend, NiCole, talked me into participating in some cake decorating classes at Hobby Lobby. I was very reluctant to go along, but when she told me that it was ‘bring a friend for free’, I was all in!  The next thing I knew, we were doing cakes for all occasions and we even had our own business cards!

Well, this past weekend was a particularly busy weekend for cake orders so I thought that I might just show off some of my personal favorites from over the years.

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Sunshine cakeMy partner in crime, NiCole, asked me to come over and help her with this adorable cake this weekend!

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How cute is this cake? This was for a bachelorette party.

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Yeah! These girls won the soccer championship for their division – and they celebrated with this huge cake!

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Sometimes it is the simple, yet elegant ones that make me just say, “ahhhh”.

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May the Force be With You!

With Love,

sunflower