Monday, June 23, 2014

Blog Lovin'

HELLO Friends! It has been such a long time since I've written a new post! I've started using Blog Lovin' now, so hopefully it will be easier for me to post!

Please join me and follow along!

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Love to all


Sunday, June 30, 2013

DIY: Needlepoint Key Fob

Happy Sunday everyone! Hope you're all having a wonderful weekend!
As I was browsing through the pictures on my phone today, I came across pictures of a needlepoint project I worked on a few months ago and wanted to share!
A while back, NMC told me he wanted a needlepoint key fob with his initials done in signal flags. I thought "Hey! If I made a needlepoint belt, I'm sure I can make a key fob!!"
The finished key fob. NMC in Signal Flags.
-Size 5 Pearl Cotton Thread in your choice of colors
-14 Count Aida Cloth
-Size 2 Tapestry Needle
-Fabric of your choice to finish back side
-Thread for attaching Needlepoint Canvas to Backing Fabric
-Thread to match leather color
-Piece of leather
-Paint to match the colors you are using
Painted canvas.
1.) The first step is to figure out how big you want your key fob. Keep in mind, you will be folding your finished needlepoint canvas in half so you will want to double the length. (See Picture Below)
2.) Trace the shape of the key fob, and the design you want onto the canvas.
3.) Use paint to color in the background and design, making sure you extend the background color about 1/4" around the whole thing. If you don't, the white canvas will show through the thread, and trust me, you don't want that to happen!
4.) Start stitching! I like to fill in the designs first and then work on the background color. 

Completed canvas!
5.) After you have stitched the whole thing, cut it out, leaving about 4 rows of canvas.
6.) Fold over the extra and do a finishing stitch around the edge in the same color you used for your background.
7.) Cut out the fabric you are using as backing and sew onto your needlepoint canvas. I used a sewing machine, but just make sure to be careful, as it can easily snag your needlepoint stitches! (Tip: Use a thread color to match your needlepoint canvas and a bobbin color to match your backing.)

I took apart one of NMC's old leather wallets for my leather piece.

8.) Now you will need to cut out a piece of leather to attach your D-ring. (I used an old wallet for this). You will want a shape that looks like a rectangle with rounded ends, and it should be big enough to hold the D-ring and wrap around the needlepoint canvas as shown above.
9.) Fold your needlepoint canvas in half, making sure the ends match up. I put a couple of stitches through the end to hold it in place.
10.) Slip the D-ring over the leather, making sure the D-ring is in the center of the leather piece. Using a sturdy needle, attach the leather to the canvas. And voile! You now have your very own, handmade, needlepoint key fob!
Hope you all found this helpful! Let me know if you make one of these, I would love to see it!


Friday, February 22, 2013

DIY: All Natural Doggie Toothpaste

Hi guys! I hope you're all having a great week!
Today I noticed miss Sandy's breath was a little stinky and she was in need of a good old tooth brushin'!  Since we've only had her a month, I haven't gotten around to buying her a toothpaste set, and the closest store that sells them is 20 minutes away, so I started doing a little research into making your own doggie toothpaste.
It's very important to Neil and myself to keep Sandy as natural as possible. I'm not talking taking it to crazy extremes, but if I can make her something and know every ingredient that goes into it, I'm certainly choosing that option! 
Anyway, I found several different ideas, and got inspired to concoct my own version, so here it is!

2 Tbs. Baking Soda
2 tsp. Water
1 tsp. Organic Coconut Oil, melted
A few drops of Peppermint or Wintergreen Essential Oil (make sure it is certified organic)
1. Pour baking soda in small bowl.

2. Gradually add water to baking soda, stirring after each addition. (I poured 1/2 tsp. at a time. You want to use the least amount of water as possible, just enough to turn the baking soda into a paste.)

3. Add melted coconut oil and essential oil to mixture. Stir until the mixture turns into a paste. (If your mixture seems too soupy, just add a bit more baking soda.)

4. You can store the paste in a air tight container for up to 3 weeks.

The last step is to brush your pups teeth! I bought an inexpensive pack of Soft bristle tooth brushes for $1 at my local grocery store. Although I made a great tooth paste, Sandy wasn't as excited as I was to get her teeth brushed! After fighting her for 15 minutes, and getting dog slobber all over me, she was left with nice, clean, pearly white teeth. How pretty!

Let me know if you try this and how your pup likes it! Do y'all have any fun recipes you make for your pups? If so, please share!

xo Julia

Thursday, January 31, 2013

A New Addition to Our Family

Hey there!
Life around here has been so busy, I haven't been able to find much time to sit down and blog. Now that the Holidays are over, and things have slowed down a bit, I hope I can get back into a routine blogging schedule again!
Back to the reason for my post!


Meet Sandy!
This may not seem like a big deal to some of y'all, but Neil and I both love dogs, and we both have  wanted a Golden Retriever for as long as we can remember.

Her Story:

A few days before Christmas, I ran to the grocery store to pick up a few more things for Christmas dinner. (We had steak by the way, and it was ah-mazing!) Neil dropped me off at the door and went to find a parking spot. As I was walking in the store, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a dog walking up to me. I stopped to look, and there she was. She walked right up to me and let me pet her. I felt so bad for her, someone had dropped her out and she was all alone.

After petting her for a minute, I went on into the store and she tried to follow me in. (insert melted heart here!) I went on in and got my groceries and when I came out I didn't see her, so I figured she had moved on.

When I got to the car, Neil jumped out and said "Don't freak out, but I have a dog in the car!" I looked in the back seat and there she was! I was SO excited! Apparently, Neil's cousin, Leah was at the store too and saw Sandy. While I was in the store, she and Neil asked around to see if anyone knew anything about her. Several people said that she had been dropped out, and that animal control was on the way to pick her up. After they heard that, Leah opened our car door and told Sandy to get in....and she did, without hesitation.

We named her Sandy for a few different reasons:

1. Because of our love fore the beach
2. Because out of our list of names, Sandy was the only one she would respond to!

It's funny, because my hair dresser, Theresa, volunteers for the local animal shelter and was in the area when all this happened. She heard the call on the radio for someone to come pick Sandy up, and then heard the animal control guys say he couldn't find her. Theresa said she was so glad we picked her up, because the shelter was full that day.

Several people were scared of Sandy because she had a weird bald spot on her ear, they thought she had mange or something. Turns out it was just from her scratching. She was a bit malnourished and because of that, she had developed a mild skin infection, but now it's healing nicely and is under control!

Neil and I both are so grateful to have miss Sandy in our lives! We've both said so many times that she was our Christmas blessing! She's such a joy and I honestly can't imagine life without her. She has such a sweet personality...I don't think she'll ever meet a stranger.

Does your pet have a neat story? I'd love to hear it!
xo Julia (and Sandy)

Friday, October 19, 2012

DIY: Headband

Hey everyone! Hope y'all are having a wonderful weekend!
This week I was lucky enough that Thursday was my Friday (yay for 3-day weekends)!  Since I didn't have to get up early Friday, I decided to do a little bit of midnight...!
I've always had a "thing" for headbands, especially tartan prints, but besides ordering them online, I don't have a store locally that sells headbands like I want. Since that is the case, I decided to make one myself!

My inspiration:

Here's what you'll need:

1 - Headband form (I got mine from Wal-Mart for under $2)
1 - Roll of wide ribbon (I chose a Christmas-like tartan)
Adhesive that will bond fabric to plastic
Foil or paper plate

Time to complete: 30 minutes

1. Start by pulling the ribbon around the headband form, leaving a little extra material at each end (for folding under later) and cut.

2. Put some of your adhesive on a piece of foil or paper plate. Dab your paintbrush in the glue and, working in small sections at a time, apply it to the edge of the inside (bottom) plastic piece of the head band. Use your finger to push the edges of the ribbon onto the adhesive, holding for a few seconds. (If you are using ribbon with a pattern on it, make sure to check frequently that you are keeping the pattern straight on the headband form.)

3. When you get to the ends, fold each end into a triangle. Dab some glue on it and then fold back up onto the inside of the headband. Secure with a piece of tape and let it dry overnight.

And there you have it! I needed a headband for the Holidays, and this was perfect! All together, I spent about $5 for the ribbon and headband, as I already had all the other supplies on hand. To get technical, I probably used $0.25 worth of ribbon, I only spent about $2.50 worth of supplies to make it. $2.50 compared to $20...sounds good to me, although I'd love to have the inspiration headband too ;)

Hope that inspired some of y'all to get a little crafty this weekend! Let me know if you try this one out, I'd love to see what you come up with!
xo Julia

Saturday, September 22, 2012

My Fall Outfit "Pin"spiration!

Happy first {official} day of fall!
I hope everyone is having a great weekend!
In honor of the first day of fall, I thought I would post some of my favorite fall outfits that I've been pinning on Pinterest! I've been pinning A LOT lately, so this may be a lengthy post. Be prepared for picture overload :)

(I kind-of have an obsession with foxes! I love them! I probably wouldn't wear this, (but I might) but I had to include it. Isn't he so cute!?)
To find all the links to this pictures, check out my "My Style Inspiration" board! Feel free to follow if you like!
What are your favorite fall outfits?

Friday, September 21, 2012

Fall Date Ideas

Hey y'all! Hope everyone is doing well!
Can you believe it's pretty much fall already!? Although fall is my favorite season, I am sad to see summer go! I'll miss the days of skirts, sandals and sundresses, BUT I'm so excited to breakout my plaid, scarves and loafers.
All this beautiful weather we've been having here in North Alabama has got NMC and I wanting to spend more and more time outside (when we get the chance)! We've also been trying to take at least one day a week to do something together, either just the two of us, or with our family.
Here are a few of our favorite activities to do during the fall:
1. Apple Picking - Here's a link to find orchards near you! You might even get lucky, as your local apple orchard might have a cider mill. If that's the case, it's great fun to watch them make the apple cider!
2. Pumpkin Patch - By this time of year, pumpkin patches are in full swing! Have fun with your sweetie, or your entire family going on hay rides, getting lost in corn mazes and enjoying the caramel apples and hot cider. I have such fond memories of going to the pumpkin patch with my family when I was younger!
2b. Pumpkin Carving - How could I not include this one!? Neil and I have so much fun carving our halloween pumpkins! You never know what kinds of cute/scary/funny faces you can come up with!
3. Go for a Scenic Drive - This is one of our favorites! It's a bit too early in the season here for all the leaves to turn, but when they do it's just beautiful! Since we live so close to the river, we have several different, but equally as beautiful routes to drive.
4. Football Games - Self explanatory!
5. Picnic - A classic of course! Pack your old plaid wool blanket and pick up some soup from your favorite restaurant. Pick a spot that has beautiful scenery, it makes your time together even more enjoyable!
6. County Fair - Fall is the season of fairs! I bet just about every weekend during these months, you'll find some kind of fair to attend in your area. The crisp, cool air of an autumn evening makes the fair so much more enjoyable (not to mention all the rides and oh-so-bad-for-you foods)!
I hope after reading this, you take some time out of your busy schedules to spend time with your loved ones! I'm sure there are so many more ideas out there. I'd love to here some of yours!
What are your favorite fall dates or activities?

Sunday, September 16, 2012

It's been far too long!

Hey there friends! I can not believe it's been over 4 months since my last post! It gets really busy around here in the summer and fall months and I don't seem to have much free time. But, I've decided to make time!  I've already got tons of great posts in mind to share, and I can't wait to do so!
During these 4 months, I missed a huge milestone for this little blog of mine! My one year
blog-aversary was in August! Wow! A year is a long time! It doesn't even seem like that long ago I was reading other peoples blogs and thinking about starting my own.

Over this past year, I have learned so many new things, discovered tons of neat craft projects, gotten great outfit inspiration and even made a few great friends along the way, and it is all thanks to your blogs!
Here's to another great year!
xo Julia

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

My Favorite Products!

Hey y'all! I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! Today's Wednesday, so only 2 more days until the weekend...YAY!

Lately I've found some great products, that I can't help but share with you here they are!

1. Banana Boat Deep Tanning Oil
I absolutely love this stuff! I've actually been using this for several years now, and it never fails to give me a great tan. And, actually, I just came in from using this for less than 30 minutes and already have great color. (NMC and I are headed to Florida in September, so I have to start now...right..?) It doesn't contain any sunscreen though, so if you use it, please be careful!  You can pick it up at Wal-Mart for around $8.

2. Kiss My Face Moisture Shave
Ok, so as you can see, this is actually marketed towards men for facial shaving. NMC picked some up at a local health food store to try when we found out that using canned shaving cream actually dries out your skin and can have harmful ingredients in it. Also, he "wet shaves" which means he uses a bowl, shaving cream or shaving soap, and a shaving brush to lather it up and a safety razor to shave with (I think it's very intriguing!). Anyways, he told me how well it worked, and I could tell by how smooth his face was, so I tried some and...WHOA! My legs have never been smoother. You just kind of smooth it over your legs and rub it around so it lathers a bit.  The best part about it, is that it is all natural, and the 11 oz. pump bottle lasts for a long time! You can pick it up at most health food stores for around $9. We have the unscented, but the Key Lime is AH-mazing!

3. L.A. Colors "Color Craze" Nail Polish in Electric Charge
By now I think y'all know I love pink nail polish in any shade imaginable, so when I saw this hot pink polish at the...Dollar Tree(!!!) I had to get it. I couldn't find my bottle, so this is a picture I found on the web of the packaging and everything. This stuff really is great, I can't believe it only cost a dollar. It takes 2 coats, but it lasts a long time, especially when you put a top coat over it. It's the polish I'm wearing in the tanning oil picture above, and it's a bit brighter in real life. So next time you're at the Dollar Tree, cruise down the beauty isle, and check out all the great colors they have!

4. Nail Magic Nail Hardener
For my birthday, which was in February, my SIL, Katy, took me to get my nails done. I had never gotten gel nails, or any type of fake nail for that matter, because my nails have always been really nice and strong. My mom always told me never to get them, and I should have listened! Long story short, here we are in May, and my nails are finally getting over having them on. Anyways, when Katy's fakes started coming off, we went over to Sally's and the sales lady recommended Nail Magic, and boy am I glad she did! It really works! I put it on before my polish every time I paint my nails and my nails are pretty much back to how they used to be. Phew! Like I said, we got it at Sally's and it was about $8.

5. Clean and Clear Oil Free Foaming Facial Cleanser
I have a hard time with my face sometimes. Sometimes it is perfectly clear, and then other times it has little bumps all over it. I have no idea why it does it, but it does, and I'm left to find a solution. I've tried lots of different things, but have found that a simple facial cleanser works well for me. I picked this up a few weeks ago, and so far, I'm happy with the results. I have oily skin, so it's a plus that the cleanser is oil free. IF you need a gentle cleanser, I recommend this! You can pick it up for about $5 just about anywhere.

P.S. Do any of y'all use Proactive or a kit like that? Does it work for you? What facial routine works best for you? I'd love to know, and get some advice!

Do any of you ladies share the same favorite products? What are some you can't live without?

xo Julia

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Top 5 Tuesday: Guilty Pleasures

Hey everyone! I know I've been MIA for nearly a month now...I'm so sorry!  This is always an extremely busy time for our family business, but now that I have a few days off, I get to catch up on some blogs, and my own!

Today I'm linking up with Rachel for Top 5 Tuesday!
This weeks topic is guilty pleasures, and I have plenty of them!
(Forgive me if my list looks just like everyone elses, but I think alot of us have the same guilty pleasures!)

1. Sweets
Mainly cheesecake. I can't get enough of this stuff! Ever since I was little, cheesecake has always been my favorite dessert! It's what I have for every birthday and make for every family gathering. Anytime I can get my hands on this stuff, it's a good day, but I've really held back these past few months, which is why it's even more of a guilty pleasure!

2. Boy Bands
I'm not one to listen to the "Top 40" stations regularly, but on a trip to Birmingham back in March with NMC's sister and cousin, both of which are teenagers, I heard One Direction, and was kind of hooked! When I was younger, I was obsessed with bands like Hanson (Taylor was MINE!), N'Sync (Justin was my choice of course), and the Backstreet Boys (I was going to marry Brian), but I never thought that at 23, I would get excited when a new boy band popped up on the radio!

3. Talbots
I always knew about Talbots, but never had one close to anywhere I was. Well, NMC and I went to Nashville over the weekend and decided to visit one of favorite places to shop in the area, The Mall at Geenhills. I didn't know they had a Talbots, but when we walked past, I just had to go in. 3 hours later, having tried on everything in the store....I was hooked! Poor NMC, he had to wait that whole time and tell me what looked good and what didn't. He's a good man though, because he didn't complain once! Thanks NMC!

4. Dresses
Every time I go in a store, I sail right over to the dress section. I love dresses! Lately, I've been in love with dresses like the one above. Sometimes, I feel super self conscious about my arms, and would give anything to have a sleeve, and shirt dresses are perfect for me! You can dress them up or down really easily!

5. American Pickers
I don't know why...but I just love this show! I love to see what the guys can scrounge up and how much it ends up being worth. I've always been into to treasure hunting and exploring, so naturally, this would be the show for me! NMC and I watch it basically every night (He likes it too!).

Those are my guilty pleasures....what are yours?

xo Julia