Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Tick Tock...Wall Clock Makeover Tutorial

Hope all are having a great week! I am SO excited about an adorable owl nursery set that a dear friend gave to Isla tonight for her first birthday! It made my heart so happy and lit a fire for me to get her room completed (finally!). I can't wait to share the final project with you soon, soon, soon! 

In the meantime, here is a sneak peak in the form of a simple clock makeover I made for the room. I love this peacock color, don't you? I started with some pur-ri-ty ugly cheapies from Wal-Mart that had good bones about them. 

I also made this one for Teagan's room which is a pink, black and white Paris theme at the moment. I have other bits of damask in the room so this fits in nicely!

To make the change I opened the back and put in solid colored scrapbook paper. Then I made the intricate pattern by simply flipping over these die cut pages I bought from Michael's ages ago for another project! The result? A simple but fun way to pop color into a room! I was inspired by an idea a mommy gave me on a pregnancy forum board about three years ago. I have no idea where she is now but if IAMSAM is out there, thanks for the inspiration!

And now to see what you've got going on! I so hope you'll join my Stars and Stripes party that focuses on anything red, white or blue! 

Teagan's travels button, 2012 february

And what if you don't have anything red, white or blue to link up? Never fear, my regular party Destination: Inspiration is going on now too!

Have a great Thursday everyone!

Linky Party Features!

I hope all are having a wonderful week! We are starting to recover here though I fear Teagan's still got a turn with the virus coming up. I just pray she will get through it with no problems and before the weekend as we have some fun planned! 

Teagan's travels button, 2012 february

In the meantime, I am so excited about sharing features from last week's linky party! Be sure to check out these amazing blogs! Thanks for the submissions, ladies! I hope you'll grab my featured button from the side bar!

Jodi at Meaningful Mama came up with this awesome American flag collage project that is super fun and kid friendly! It looks like a real piece of art while providing a great way to involve the kids in Memorial Day and July 4th! I know Teagan will love this! Check out this blog for awesome kids activities, character development ideas, parenting tips and more!

Isn't this Tiffany blue dress with mustard shoes from Welcome to the Good Life just perfect? Sarah is just as gorgeous and I love her blog! She shared her adventures of making this dress for her special invite to have Breakfast at Tiffany's! I love checking in on her amazing style and cute-as-can be family!

I love this Prickly Posie tutorial from Sister See Sister Do! Sisters Michelle and Julie showed us how to use up extra fabric to make these pointy shaped stars that can be used as a hair bow, broach, to embellish a wreath and more! I love the bright spring colors in this fabric!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Destination: Inspiration Linky Party #12

Hello everyone!  We had a rough start to the week here with a virus running through our house so I am online for just a moment before heading back to bed.  I hope you'll forgive me for postponing features from last week's party until tomorrow.

In the meantime, this weekly party is a highlight of my week and I can't wait to see what you've been working on! I hope you'll link up on this party and also join my Stars and Stripes party which features all goodies and crafts related to red, white and blue!  It is running from now until July 4th!

Now, on to the party! Show me what you've got!

Passport to an Awesome Party

Teagan's Travels Button, 2012 February

I Was Featured, 2012 February

*I  am trying to grow my little blog so please do follow me using Google  Friends Connect or Linky Followers on my sidebar!

*Grab  my button and post it somewhere on your blog.

*Link  to your post instead of your overall blog address.

*We  all love comments so spread the love to at least one other blogger.

Have a great week! 

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Be the Hero

Can you be a hero today?  Would you let your mouse lead you to a new, great, big role that promises to change at least one life, not to mention yours....forever???

Sunday, April 21, 2012 is a critical day in the ministry of Compassion International.  Dubbed Compassion Sunday, this is our chance to Change the Story for over 20,000 children who are in desperate poverty around the globe.  So today's post is dedicated to those children. Real children who need our help.  And to their families who are no doubt eagerly waiting for news that their lives have been changed.  That they have the means to escape a life without hope or opportunity while hearing the powerful message of Jesus' love. 

On my blog I've shared the wonderful stories of the precious girls we sponsor and consider part of our family.  Pascaline lives in Rwanda and Elibie in Burkina Faso. 

Today I want to introduce you to a new girl named Bethlehem and share her incredible sponsorship story.   It is one that touches my heart and reminds me that there is more than one way to become a sponsor...

Isn't Bethelehem so cute?  This little girl was sponsored by my parents to honor the life of Hannah, the granddaughter of their friends, their former pastor and his wife.  Hannah went to live with Jesus on Easter Sunday last year.  A letter my mom wrote to Hannah's parents will be read at her memorial service this week.  And because it really captures the amazing way God used several lives to transform Bethelehem's, I asked Mom if I could share it here: 

To Hannah's Family, 
When I heard that your family had begun to sponsor a child through Compassion International and that it had delighted your precious Hannah, I committed in my heart to find a child for us to sponsor.  We want you to know that because Hannah lived as a sweet and wonderful Christian girl who is now living with Jesus, Bethelehem who lives in poverty in Ethiopia has a new family and will be assured constantly that she matters, to us and to Jesus.  She had been on the waiting list for a sponsor for approximately six months. 

I believe that one day Hannah and Bethelehem will see each other in Heaven.  When Bethelehem is a little older,  we surely want her to know about Hannah and how we were directed toward the sponsorship because of Hannah,  

We have prayed for you and your family and will continue to do so.  We have not borne what you are going through, but as parents, and as fellow Believers, we grieve with you.  We wanted you to know that this is just one of the many ways in which Hannah touched lives. 

Maureen and Jim

Just this week Maureen and Jim received the first of many letters from their sponsored child.  She told them about her best friends, favorite color and holiday. 


She's a little spunky sprite like my Teagan! Plus, she seems just as obsessed with cats. In addition to her request for a picture of my parents she asked if they could include one of the cat they hopefully own! 

We also talked about how many children in Compassion's programs are newly able to attend school as most countries charge fees and require uniforms that parents in poverty can't afford. We are not sure what her situation was prior to her sponsorship but are delighted that in this letter Bethelehem tells my parents that her family is so happy she gets to go to school now! 

Wanted: A Few Good Heroes

It is easy to be a hero today.  Sponsorship costs $38 a month, the price of a meal out on the town.  But to families like Pascaline's that make $5 a month it means the world. Is there someone you would like to honor?  Would you like to teach your children the gift of compassion?  Perhaps find a child who shares their birthday?  The possibilities for sponsorship are endless.  

Whatever your situation today, I pray God will prompt you to feel a true connection with one of these children. I can promise the relationship will bless your life as much as theirs! Have a great Sunday, everyone!

In Jesus' Name, 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

When God Says "No"

The other day, I saw the most beautiful dragonfly buzzing around our front door.  Dragonflies.  I love them. In Japan, they are called tombo and serve as a symbol of good luck. 

This vision of a tombo in my front yard brought back memories.  As a college student, I longed to travel.  And my heart has always been fascinated by France.  The people.  The food.  The gorgeous language and scenery. I wanted to study there. But despite my greatest efforts, I could never pull the funds together.  I was frustrated and discouraged. 

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

One day, at the end of a political science class, my professor called me to his desk.  And right there, an opportunity I could never have imagined changed my life forever.  I could go to Japan to study in a university on a full scholarship through the Japanese embassy!  The day I turned in my application, a dragonfly or tombo was hanging about my front door.  I knew that day that I was going to get my scholarship!  The two years I spent in Japan were some of the happiest in my life and truly blessed me.   And that provided a valuable lesson to me. Sometimes when God says "No" it is because He has greater plans for us.  Plans we could never imagine. 

There was a time early in my career when I was laid off and couldn't see past my tears and feelings of embarrassment.  I'd considered that company like family and worked until the wee hours of the mornings, invested in its financial success.  But despite my feelings of defeat, what followed was a completely new career that took me around the world and to my beloved France for the very first time! 

God said "No" to many a college boy that I tried to mold into my idea of husband material.  But at the age of 35, after 5.5 years of dating, He (ok, can I say "finally"?) married me to my best friend.  A lad from Ireland that I met in Colorado of all places just one month after we were both transferred there for our jobs! 

God said "No" when I cried out for a baby.  I cried when I couldn't get pregnant.  I cried through miscarriages.  And I cried through a cruel ectopic pregnancy that had to be terminated.  But on the eve of Isla's first birthday and just eleven days from Teagan's third birthday, I can say my babies were worth every tear and moment of waiting.  I didn't become a mom the way I imagined. Instead, God brought me to my knees and back to Him.  To depend on Him and His timing.  And in the process, He taught me how to appreciate every single moment of my motherhood.  Even the sticky, poopy, frazzled, vomit-filled days full of no sleep (all of which I've had in the past 24 hours)...because they are precious. 

Now when I pray over a big request or decision we have, I imagine a stoplight, an idea given to  me by a pastor in a sermon I never forgot.  Red. Yellow. Green. You see, sometimes God's answer is "No" and sometimes it's "Not right now."  Sometimes it's "Go. All the way. Go for it!"  And sometimes?  If we are lucky?  It's something we've never even thought to ask for.  Something "Wonderous" as our Poppie would say.  Something magical. And it feels so right. 

I know there are also more serious decisions, painful decisions and I don't want to dismiss them.  I only intend to offer hope with this post.  Is there something you are praying for today?  It would be my privilege and honor to pray for you and your family.  Please leave a comment below.  Or if you would like more privacy, email me at

In the meantime, let us say this prayer together:

Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for your love and wisdom. Thank you for seeing a big, brighter and more brilliant plan than we could ever imagine possible. Comfort us in our disappointment. Soften our hearts and have us turn to you with patience and gratitude, assured that you have great plans in store for us.  In Jesus' name we pray.  Amen.

Blessings, Michelle

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Stars and Stripes Party!


Welcome to Teagan's Travels! I love summer for its outdoor celebrations, Memorial Day and July 4th! I hope you will join my linky party and share all your red, white and blue inspirations. And what if you would prefer a Union Jack or Bastille Day? You are so welcome here too! As long as it is red, white and blue inspired this is the spot for your family friendly recipes, crafts, decor and

If you don't have a red, white and blue moment to share here I hope you'll join my
Tuesday Destination: Inspiration linky party!

Passport to an Awesome Party!!

I am trying to grow my blog so it would be amazing and so appreciated if you would

 - follow me
 post this Stars and Stripes button on your blog somewhere 

That way we can spread the word about this red, white and blue party!

Grab my button!

Stars and Stripes Blog Button

Here we go! I can't wait to see all your awesome projects!


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Liebster Blog Award Nominations!

Have you heard of the Liebster Blog award? It is an award given by bloggers to their favorite blogs with under 200 followers. I am so honored that Cameron at Cameron Homemade along with Carol at Are We There Yet nominated me for this award! It totally made my year as I really feel a connection with all who visit and comment on my little blog. I am trying to grow this year and pray it is a fun and inspiring place to visit!

If you are new here, my name is Michelle and I live in southern USA. Life is super busy as wife to my husband Brian who is from Co. Galway, Ireland. We have been married seven years on May 5th and our two girls keep us on our toes! Teagan turns three years old this month and Isla turns one this week! I share my love of Christ here, fun with family and friends, our new adventure in homeschooling, role as an Advocate and Sponsor for Compassion International, and a new obsession with crafting and everything DIY! 

Here are six of my favorite posts:

3. I am Able

6. Feel Me

It's never a dull moment around here and usually involves a mishap. Or two. And always laughter and fun. Brian and I are world travelers and have hopefully passed this interest on to our girls, hence the name of our blog. I have a ton planned for the blog in 2012 including a trip to Ireland and beyond, new Linky Parties, giveaways and more!

Teagan's Travels Button, 2012 February

On Tuesdays I host 
Destination: Inspiration, a blog party! 
Please add me to your list of linky parties. Teagan's Travels is a great place to link up any post on inspirational writing, recipes, crafts, DIY projects, Etsy stores and more. You are so welcome to join us! Here's a link to this week's party:

Before I move on to my nominees for the Liebster Blog Award I want to say a bit more about Cameron and Carol's awesome blogs:

Cameron from Cameron Homemade's blog features her crafty creations which include her talented sewing, knitting, crochet, paper crafts. She even has a kiln and pottery wheel! How does this mom of two, busy wife and ER nurse do it all? Very well, I can tell you! I've featured her before on my blog and my Easter burlap banner was inspired by one she made!

Carol at Are We There Yet shares beautiful travel photography, yummy recipes, DIY projects, decorating, scrapbooking and sewing! She's a regular contributor on my Destination: Inspiration linky parties and always inspiring so be sure to check out her blog!

Now, I am VERY excited to pass this award on to a few of my favorite blog friends. Here they are, in no particular order!

1. Northwest Lovelies Jenny is so very talented and I've featured her work before! She has wonderful ideas along with tutorials! I am itching for time to make her jute spheres and button monograms!

2. Proverbial Homemaker Tauna inspires me with her passion to serve the Lord and encourage other homemakers while doing so. Check out her inspirational writings and latest post featuring the cutest kids garden birthday party theme!

3. My Simple Country Life -Adina is a former beach girl transplanted to the country.  Check out her blog for adventures in gardening, recipes, DIY and even building their own vintage log cabin, circa 1860s!

4. Chase the Star - I love Barbara's style! She's a beautiful soul who finds a way to incorporate her inspiration within a family friendly budget. She is a regular contributor to my weekly linky party and always inspiring!

5. A Little Bit of Everything Check out this awesome blog for amazing photos from around the globe, delicious recipes, DIY/crafts projects and helpful hints!

Ladies, if you want to accept the Liebster Award please see the rules below to pass it along to five more blogs! 

This award is given by bloggers to their favorite blogs with under 200 followers. 

The Liebster Rules are:
1. Post about your win on your blog.
2. Link back to the blogger who presented you with the award.
3. Copy and paste the award button to your blog.
4. Present the Liebster Award to 5 blogs that have less than 200 followers that you think deserve to be recognized.
5. Let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.

Thanks for visiting everyone! I was also blessed with the Versatile Blogger award and will be announcing those 15 nominees this week!

In Jesus' Name, Michelle 

Monday, April 16, 2012

Destination: Inspiration Linky Party #11

Welcome to a new week! Brian was traveling for work last week and I am still recovering! I have a new respect for mommies who have husbands who travel and especially for single moms. Wow. The girls were so good but I was absolutely exhausted. 

Thank you for all your amazing submissions last week! What a talented crew we have here! Here are a few of my favorites from last week's party. I am so excited to see what you are working on this week!

I am in love with Burlap and Button's Chippy Table! Isn't it simply amazing? If I could transform the look of my entire house into one style it would be this. Simple. Rustic. Romantic. With plenty of burlap thrown in for good measure. If you agree then you will be completely smitten with Kirstin's blog Burlap and Buttons! 

This guest bedroom makeover from G*rated is fabulous! Yellow is a color de choix this spring and I love it for its fresh look. Brilliant that Marie paired it with Valspar's Stormy Weather gray to give it a totally mod yet comfy feel. This is not your grandma's guest bedroom! The g*rated girls (Marie, Chelsea and Buff) are so talented you just have to check out their site and Sunday linky party! 

And speaking of yellow, Victoria at Vixen Made has inspired me again with a spring lantern transformation! Check out her blog to see how she transformed these $3 beauties! So awesome! And I love how she used faux grass and baby's breath to complete the look! Go to her site for so many amazing tutorials that it would be hard to narrow down my favorites! One day I hope to have the time to make her rosette key chains, princess play crown, patchwork pillow and more!

Passport to an Awesome Party
Thanks so much to everyone for the amazing submissions each week! I am so inspired by every one's post and hope you will all join again each week! If you were featured I'd love it if you'd grab my featured button to post on your blog.

Teagan's Travels Button, 2012 February

I Was Featured, 2012 February

*I  am trying to grow my little blog so please do follow me using Google  Friends Connect or Linky Followers on my sidebar!

*Grab  my button and post it somewhere on your blog.

*Link  to your post instead of your overall blog address.

*We  all love comments so spread the love to at least one other blogger.

This week I promise to announce my Liebster Award and Versatile Blogger nominees! I am so excited to share these awards with all of you so come back to see if you were nominated.

Have a great week!