True Story: I wore my bedroom slippers to church last week

or, A Recap of Events from the Past Couple of Weeks. You can choose the title. =]

This past Sunday, I was horrified to look down at my feet and realize I had worn my blue fuzzy bedroom slippers to church. Typically, I’ll wear them on Sunday mornings until it is time to go, and then I’ll change shoes when I grab my Bible to walk out the door. This past week, however, I got my Bible, but neglected to remember to change shoes. It happened. The fulfillment of one of my biggest fears.

There wasn’t time to go home and change before the service started, so on they stayed for our service and fellowship meal. Although my pride was severely wounded, I can definitely say that my feet were really comfortable! I might just be tempted to do it on purpose sometime…. not. =] I’m really blessed with a very understanding church family and received no teasing whatsoever. They are truly the bestest. <3 Two weeks ago, Monday came and I began teaching my younger siblings piano again. They are working really hard on their pieces and are working diligently to move through their books. It is such fun to see their faces light up as they understand each new concept!

And so, the piano has been going fairly non-stop lately, because two days later, on Wednesday, I began taking piano lessons again from one of our favorite piano teachers. I was so excited to start lessons again! I warned her beforehand on the phone about how “sloppy” my playing would probably be, but she remained insistent that it would be just fine. =] At my lesson, she told me my note reading was still fairly good, but that my fingering needed quite a bit of work. She made me little notes on the piece we are working on, so I have been working through it slowly this week in the process of re-training my fingers to play correctly.

Would it be too much to say again how excited I am to be furthering my piano studies?? =]

What else have we been up to? Well, there have been a few trips to the big library somewhat close to where we live- I may or may not have checked out quite a few different materials. I love libraries. =]

I also made some time to work on a few calligraphy projects for the back of my bedroom door. I keep a collection of inspirational quotes, song lyrics, etc. on the back of the door so that I can keep them close at hand for review. These particular quotes were from Pinterest:

The back of the door:

And you can’t work on a crafting project without eating a snack, right? =]

Mama and Daddy went out of town for the past couple of days, so the siblings and I have been keeping the house going and taking time to do some fun things as well. Jacob provided tacos for dinner Friday night and Josh brought pizza in Saturday night:

Friday night, we watched a favorite movie of ours, The Princess Bride. Josh recently put surround sound in our family room, so it made for quite the epic and memorable viewing experience, that’s for sure. =]

Then there were the oreo milkshakes that we may or may not have made two nights in a row. I’m not admitting to anything though……=]

We also tried to webcam a couple of times, but I think the internet was having some issues and it wasn’t working quite as well as it ought to have. We had fun anyways.

It’s definitely been a memorable couple of weeks. I love seeing how God opens different doors and opportunities as we seek what He would have us do. Life around here is always an adventure, that’s for sure! God is good, all the time. =D

Many blessings to all of you, dear friends. I pray this Sunday has been one of rest and blessed peacefulness for each one of you. <3 Love, ~MiSs CoUrTnEy

{the paint box}

I’ve been painting quite a bit- mainly still plugging away at a little project my dad is putting together. I’ve been enjoying it immensely, but there have been many moments of sadness.

My grandmother was an incredibly talented artist, and she left us a wonderful legacy of pictures she had drawn and painted over the years. As a result, we inherited many of her art supplies. For months now, ever since she passed, they had been sitting in a box. The thought of even looking through them again was so very painful.

Finally, a week or so ago, in need of a particular brush and some additional paint colors, I went and opened the box. Each and every item was still packed just the way they were when we were packing up her house.

Looking through the box, the thoughts and memories swirling in my head as I remembered once again she wouldn’t be using those brushes, pencils or paints any more…. it was almost too much to bear.

As I was discussing these feelings with Mom, she told me many, many times that Grandmommy would have wanted us to use those things. She always encouraged us to pursue our artistic endeavors and would bring us art supplies nearly every time she came out to visit. This past Christmas, many of us received fully-stocked art boxes full of supplies for use in the art class we attend each week. She loved painting and drawing and was so excited that we were interested in a hobby she was passionate about. Part of the legacy that she left us was a love of creating pictures and drawings….. capturing life the way we see it and putting it upon paper.

The knowledge that each and every item I touched had been in her hands, helping her create her artwork… in some strange way, just touching those brushes and paints, it felt like I was closer to her. I regret so much not asking her more questions about her pictures or asking what inspired her to paint or draw each one.

Still looking through the box, as I came upon a particular paint palette, a special memory came to mind.

I remember going to stay with her over the weekend. On that Saturday morning, after we made breakfast, she told me we were going to have a picnic lunch and paint afterwards in a local park. We packed our picnic basket and painting supplies and started out!

We must have been quite the unusual sight. Both of us were wearing old paint-covered clothes and ball caps, and I was wearing one of her old jackets because I had left mine at home. As I was still quite a young-un (11 years old! =]), it swallowed me! =D

Our subject for the painting was my teddy bear, Olivia. =]

She was teaching me how to use acrylic paints, and had purchased us both matching paint palettes and acrylic paint tools. We had paint all over everything! I love thinking back to this adventure because it was so spur-of-the-moment and yet incredibly fun as well. I giggle thinking back to how we must have looked carrying that much stuff into a park and wearing the super-old clothes besides. Grandmommy always had some sort of adventure or big plan- I truly believe there was absolutely nothing that she couldn’t have done if she set her mind to it. <3

…back to the art box…

As I neared the bottom of the box, I found what I had been looking for- watercolour paint.

A meaningful discovery was that Grandmommy had written in the names of the paint colors above each section. I smiled as I ran my fingers across the writing- each name written by hand in ink brought a smile. I would know her handwriting anywhere, and it was a bitter-sweet delight to see it today.

In addition to the project for my dad, one of the painting projects I have been working on lately has been a completion of a picture my grandmother had sketched out but never finished. Here is her original sketch:

And the painting thus far:

It still has quite a ways to go, but it is amazing to think that this is a picture we have worked on together. <3 I'm so glad God allows us memories of the ones we love so very dearly. It helps ease the pain when I recall those special times.

Tutorial: Do-It-Yourself Personalized Mug

Hello to you on this beautiful Monday afternoon! =] Today, I would like to share a tutorial for making a dishwasher and microwave-safe personalized mug. It’s really easy, and costs just under $5.00 to make! All you need to get started are the following materials:

A plain glass mug (I got mine from the Dollar Tree)
A glass paint pen (around $3.00 at Hobby Lobby- less if you have a 40% off coupon. =])
Glass cleaner
Cookie sheet or pie pan… just something to bake the mug on.
An oven

Without further ado:

First, take your mug, and thoroughly wash it to remove any excess dirt.

Next, wipe down the entire outer surface of the mug with glass cleaner to prep the glass for the paint.

Now, take your paint pen

and press it down firmly on a flat surface to get the paint started.

Here comes the fun part! Using the paint pen, decorate the outside of the mug however you wish. I’m a fan of big band music, so I used it for my theme. I’m planning on making more with Bible verses and book quotes next. =]

Place the mug on your cookie sheet and bake in the oven at 375^F. for 45 minutes.

IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO BAKE YOUR MUG WITHIN 4 HOURS OF DECORATING THE OUTSIDE. If you don’t bake it within 4 hours, your mug will not be dishwasher safe. =]

Pull out of the oven and allow to cool.

Then, give it a good wash and…

….make a good steamy mug of coffee to enjoy! =]

That’s it! You’re finished! Enjoy your new handcrafted creation, or make a special gift for a friend- the possibilities are endless. =]

Have a blessed day!
~Miss Court