Sunday, March 23, 2014

My Neighborhood

Since this winter is dragging on and on and on and on.... 
(you get the drift),
I thought you might enjoy a few glimpses of my neighborhood. 
It really is beautiful the way that God blankets the barren trees and fields with bright white snow.

If you take a walk down my road, this is what you would see. 

I love the way the sun reflects and glistens on the snow.
It looks like trillions of pieces of glitter. 
Especially when a breeze blows a dusting of snow 
through the crisp, cold air.

It is amazing that God made a provision for beauty even during the season when every plant is hibernating.  
There really is something to love and appreciate about each season.
Even winter.
It is a picture of our life.  No matter what season we are in, God can make something beautiful out of it. 

Pin It

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Laundry Room Re-Do

When we first moved into our house the laundry/entry room was painted stark white on every surface.  Now white can be a clean palette for some people, but I like a little color in my life.
I decided to take the room from drab to fab by painting it a bold color.

I am usually color conservative.  But I always admire other peoples bold colors in their homes, so I thought I'd try it myself.
I shouldn't have.  
I made a mistake by choosing a deep color for a small room with no natural light.
Although I really loved the color, instead of making the room fabulous, it made the room feel small and dark.

I painted the room a hot pink/raspberry color that was bold, exotic, and fun - and completely wrong for the space.  
I had originally thought to make it into a glitzy and glamorous space with a fun chandelier and a wild rug, but after I got the painting all done, I realized that finishing the room wouldn't improve the cave feeling that was prevalent.

Although I didn't love how the paint turned out in the room, I couldn't justify spending more money to repaint it.
Paint may be a cheap way to update a space but it isn't that cheap!
So, the laundry room stayed that color for over a year. 
I didn't hate it, but I didn't love it either. 
Hunky hubby didn't love it, and neither did the boys. 
There were a few friends who liked it and there were even some people who never even noticed the color!?!?
Then, finally, the opportunity arose for the laundry room to be repainted.
We had been wanting to add some storage cabinets. Friends of ours picked a couple of matching cabinets up for us at a Habitat Restore. 
I gave the cabinets a face lift with a couple coats of paint and some new handles.
Before installing them though, I convinced H.H. that this would be the perfect time to repaint. It honestly didn't take much convincing because he didn't like the pink anyway. 
So on New Years Eve we repainted the laundry room!
I still wanted the color to be something feminine, but I learned my lesson with the bold color and decided that less is more.  H.H. helped me choose a pretty lavender color. 
It's girly without being overly girly. 
I love the color now. 
It is hard to see in the pictures, but it is perfect in the room.  It brightens up the space helping it to feel larger.

H.H. hung the cabinets above the washer and dryer.  Then he attached a pole for hanging shirts to dry and placed a shelf above that.  The cabinets add great storage and keep the room looking neater than the bare shelf that was in there before.

I would still like to replace that old gold light fixture with a cute chandelier. I'll be keeping my eyes open for something at a yard sale or flea market so I can have another DIY project. 
I picked up the wall art on clearance at TJ MAXX.
It says "smile, happy is beautiful".
I find this to be a helpful reminder when I am knee deep in laundry.  It is even more helpful when I am rushing out of the house after corralling kids and 2 dogs and coming back inside 3 times to grab the forgotten items off of the counter. In all that chaos, my face is seriously lacking a smile. I need this little reminder to stop, take a deep breath, and smile. Smiles help not only your face be beautiful, but your heart as well.

We added double rows of coat hooks behind the door.
This is for my coat fetish that I inherited from my Dad. That's right, I said Dad.

We also keep the bulletin board, calendar, and phone charging station in here.  There is a row of hooks under the shelf for the boys coats, although I am sure they will be outgrowing that soon.

The peg board wall holds baskets for 5 peoples shoes. It also holds house tools, hats, and duct tape.  Behind the wall on the left are 3 shelves that hold an array of miscellaneous junk that I have a terrible time keeping organized.
I think this is the most multipurpose room in the whole house!
Personally, if I was able to design my house, I would never have my laundry room be my entry room.  But my Mama always told me  "You need to do the best with what you've got". Sound advice that can be applied to many things, even laundry/entry rooms.
All things considered, we have done the best we can.  The new color helps.  I love the clean white cabinets and trim. It all comes together to make a pleasant room to be in. Which is nice because I am in here a lot.

I'd love to hear about your painting mishaps and what you did about it.  Leave a comment below!
Thanks for looking at our space.  Organizing ideas are welcome. As long as you can tell me how to train the kids to always put their stuff away. 

Pin It

Monday, March 3, 2014

Book Review: Orphan Justice

Orphan Justice: 
How to care for orphans beyond adopting.
 by Johnny Carr

My husband and I have been praying about how adoption could play a part in our family for a long time. As of right now, we haven't felt like we are in a position to pursue the adoption of a child. This decision has not come lightly or easily. So in this season of waiting, we have been looking around for ways in which we can still play a part in the care of orphans. 
The desire to do something to aid in the plight of the orphan comes from the Bible.  James 1:27 says "Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you."  

God wants us to be concerned and to have compassion for the orphan. What do you think of when you think of orphans?
Well, often you think of children who are living in an orphanage or in the foster system because they don't have parents who are able to care for them. If you believe that all children deserve a family then you also think about adoption.
But here is another truth.  Even though God calls all of us to care for orphans, he doesn't call all of us to adopt.  
So if adoption isn't an option either for the orphan or for your family, what can you do to help?
That's where this book comes in.
Johnny Carr speaks as an adoptive father who is passionate about caring for orphans but see's that adoption isn't the only option, and sometimes not even the best option.
He sees the big picture of the plight orphans around the world are facing.  He gives Biblical and practical advice for ways that you can get involved and make a difference.

Some of the topics that Carr tackles are:
orphans and human trafficking, AIDS, orphanages,
poverty, foster care, racism,
abortion, the Church, and spiritual warfare.
He isn't afraid to talk truth about the hard things.  His writing is relevant and challenging.  

I appreciate that at the end of each chapter Johnny offers practical ideas about how you can get involved. 
Things as simple as raising awareness for adoption in your local church to starting a backpack food ministry in your local schools or  supporting a ministry that is working to end Human trafficking.  You may decide to become a foster parent, or simply support a family who is fostering or adopting.  You might begin by volunteering at a local clinic, by supporting refugee care or by praying. There are many important options that will help to change the future for at least one needy child.

Maybe you will decide that adoption is for your family. 
That is wonderful! 
But if you don't believe that you are able and called to adopt, there is still so much that can be done.
"Adoption is not for everyone, but caring for orphans is for everyone."

I plan on sharing my copy of this book with everyone I can.  Although you may want to get your own because mine is full of highlighted passages! 
I truly believe that it is a book that every Christian should read.  I also believe that orphan care is a cause that everyone should and can get behind. 
I am excited for our family as we pray about how we should move forward in orphan care.
What about you? 
What can you do?

Pin It