Wednesday, August 29, 2012

seat belt web seating

What do you do when you find 4 good, quality chairs at a yard sale for a buck each, with no seats? That's the question my daughter-in-law posed to me. And I took on the challenge ~ first by checking out all the endless possibilities on Pinterest. I had already pinned a few ideas on my DIY board, but because these were going to be used for patio dining, I opted for the webbed seats found HERE. But then I was reminded of those painful, brittle webbed lawn chairs from my youth. You know, from too much sun exposure. And well, we live in Phoenix.
Anyway, I got the OK from Nicole to go ahead and check out the various webbing available ~ my first stop ~ Tempe SAS. Love that place. I was immediately drawn to the colorful rolls of soft, supple seat belt webbing. But the cost per yard to weave each chair would come to around $10.00 a chair. Then a gal at SAS told me that maybe Tempe Sales had the retro lawn chair webbing, that I was avoiding. But I went anyway.

Well, much to my surprise, as I entered the store there were these stacks of seat belt webbing in humungous rolls for $20.00. That's right ~ soft, supple, genuine, authentic seat belt webbing for $20.00 a roll. And just so you know, I barely made a dent in that roll doing these 4 chairs!

Because the design wasn't square, I couldn't do a tight weave, but still got the results I had hoped for ~ strong, durable and very comfortable. I actually didn't tackle the last two till they had used the first two chairs for quite some time. Thankfully, they are holding up beautifully.

This was definitely a two-person job. While I pulled and turned under the edges, my husband stapled like a madman. Very labor intensive. We got sorta testy with each other at times.
In fact, we found watching the movie Frequency while doing the last two chairs made a huge difference. A welcome distraction.

We found the outer rib cording (enlarged below) at Tempe Sales. We knew we needed something to hide the sharp, hot (from the sun) staples. Upholstery nail heads wouldn't work in the Arizona heat, nor did they fit the casual design of outdoor dining. So the cording proved perfect. The application, not so much. Very tedious work. You have to quickly spread open the ribbing mere moments before it's being stapled and hope you got your fingers out of the way in time. But as you can see, well worth the wear and tear of said fingers and hands.

And like I said, we barely made a dent in that huge roll, so I'm thinking each chair cost a cool 3 dollars each. And best of all, Shawn & Nicole love them! Oh and I found that Ikea outdoor coffee table at a yard sale for a dollar. Sanded down the top and applied several coats of outdoor poly finish. Perfect for drinks and appetizers... or sippy cups and snacks.

You can check out more creative transformations ~

Monday, August 27, 2012

33 years ago

33 years ago I put on this wedding dress and married the man of my dreams. No, let me take that back. No way did I marry the man of my dreams, cuz never in my wildest dreams did I imagine I would marry a man of such character, honesty, humility and devotion to God. Seriously, such a man wasn't even on my radar. But I am forever grateful that God chose him for me, and me for him.

Love this photo ~ the only one taken of us singing at our wedding reception. 
And it's one of my very favorites.

I still love my dress and that I wore a wreath of baby's breath and stephanotis in my hair and carried a bouquet of white carnations, baby's breath and stephanotis in my hand.

And every few years I put on my wedding dress and that now dried-up baby's breath-less wreath, and Randy snaps a few photos just for fun. And I get all weepy and wonder how God could have given me such a good, good man. I am truly blessed.

Our daughter Miranda, who will be getting married in a couple months, posted this on Facebook ~

33 years ago today a boy and a girl exchanged vows to love each other and serve one another for the rest of their lives. They believed God had a purpose for their lives that could only be fulfilled if they were together. 33 years ago countless people's lives were changed. The boy and the girl have given their lives to ministering to hundreds and hundreds of people over the years and their marriage
 has been the safe place for each of them to grow and learn and become more who Christ intended them to be. They have loved each other really really well. They showed what a real beautiful, god-honoring marriage looked like - with all the brokenness, laughter, tears, playfulness and memories. They created a home for three kids to in turn discover Gods love and purpose for their own lives. I am so thankful for this day 33 years ago. 
Happy anniversary Mom & Dad!!

Thank you Miranda for reminding me of God's perfect plan for us and why He brought us together. So excited to see how God's perfect plan unfolds as you & Aaron begin your life together!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Best of Randy Thompson

March 18th, 1978 ~ I can still remember how I felt that night, sitting on the floor in a room filled with teens and young adults, listening to song after song, hanging on to his every word, and thinking who is this man that writes such profound truth? We would exchange phone numbers that night, so he could find out more about the studio that Linda & I were recording at. He called 3 weeks later. And he asked me out. And on our first date I asked him about the songs he writes. And I told him my favorite from that night was Jesus Touched Me, which would later became the title of his first ever cassette recording. 

Click HERE and then each song title to hear a portion of each of the songs off
Jesus Touched Me.

Fast forward. Four years later. We're married. He's recording his first ever vinyl record and the photo shoot for the album cover takes place among the boulders of Cave Creek. I have no idea that I'm pregnant with our first born, who would arrive May 30th, 1982. That and the release of It's By Grace made for a pretty special year for Randy & I. 
He would go on to record 5 more CDs in the next 2 decades ~ 
It's By Grace being the only vinyl in the bunch.

Click HERE and then click each of the 7 CDs to hear a portion of each song off each CD.

We celebrate our 33rd wedding anniversary this Saturday and except for that first year of marriage, we've been in full-time ministry ever since. Till January of this year. Oh, he's still doing ministry and writing songs that are better than ever, with his next release coming in 2013, it's just that we no longer make a living doing ministry.

All to say, Randy is doing a Best of Randy Thompson Concert 
at our church ~ September 15th.
I would love to see you there. I would love for you to hear the stories behind each of the songs. I would love for you to feel what I felt that night all those years ago. Cuz I still do. After all these years.

Fast forward 30 years since that vinyl album cover shoot. Our son Shawn (yes, that pregnancy) made us this YouTube video. What a precious gift to remind us of the faithfulness of God over these past 30 years of ministry. Thank you Shawn. Thank you God.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

memories on a quad

Like I said life's better on a deck ~ so why not go back to Tim & Lynn's cabin to close out the summer. And it really is better, especially with good friends and a good book. Started reading A Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. This book was written for me... exactly what I'm grappling with in my journey of letting go and fully trusting God with where I'm at in this season of life. So hard. But so good.

Well, this time the weather allowed us to take Tim & Lynn's quads out for a long trail ride.

And let me tell you, what a thrill! So freeing. So exhilarating.
Definitely the highlight of our summer.

I think I had that silly grin on my face the entire ride ~ along with occasional whoops and hollers and shrieks of joy. I held nothing back. I was riding high.

The Prescott area has seen lots of rain in the past month, so the creeks were a flowing... 

... and the swimming holes full.

These ginormous granite boulders were scattered all throughout the Wolf Creek Campgrounds. So amazing.

I took this picture as the sun was peeking out from the threatening rain clouds... 

and then moments later it started raining. Beautiful, glorious rain.

We parked under a canopy of trees for a while, but then just decided to go for it and drive the last 20 minutes in the pouring rain. We're talkin' painful, pelting rain... like BB gun pellets poking your forehead rain. Even though I could have hidden behind Randy for most of the way, I chose to close my eyes and feel my husband's pain ~ and you guys, we have never laughed so hard that entire ride back to the cabin. 

Thanks Tim & Lynn for such a fun, memory-making weekend!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

muu muu & men's products

I have a confession to make ~ on occasion I wear a Muu muu. Ok, so maybe more like a lot. And no, that's not my Muu muu. But very similar to the one I wear, only mine goes to my ankles. When I googled Muu muu I found this post and that dress, which confirmed that yes, the dress I bought at a thrift store a year ago, is in fact a Muu muu. When I finally made my way through the myriad of emotions associated with realizing you have entered an age in which one puts on a Muu muu... well, then I embraced it. Think about it, our temps hit like a billion degrees last week, so who wants anything sticking to your waist, your thighs or your armpits? Who wouldn't want the comforts of loose, flowy, 100% cotton? You know you know what I'm talkin' about. And you know you want one.
Here's the thing, you put it on as your day is winding down and you just want to be comfortable. It's not like it's a nightgown, so you're perfectly safe if the Schwan's man stops over. I mean you gotta let him in out of the sweltering heat, and then, well, you've got to order something. It's the least I can do for the poor man. (or poor woman) We actually did have a woman Schwan's man for a while.

So while I'm at it, I'll make another confession. I prefer using men's products. There, I said it. I've been using men's deodorant and men's soap for the past couple years, and most recently men's shampoo. You may be wondering why men's when there are way more women's products to choose from. Maybe that's the reason ~ the fact that they are forever releasing the latest, greatest products for women, makes me wonder if more money is being put into marketing than the actual quality of the products. Whew, feels good to get that out.

So for those that are curious about which products ~
deodorant ~ Right Guard Total Defense 5 Power Gel (Arctic Refresh)
bar soap ~ Dove Men+Care body+face bar
shampoo ~ Suave Men deep clean peppermint shampoo

Ok ~ I wasn't planning on confessing this last one, but if it'll change a life ~ why not.
I washed my face with Lava soap all through high school. I'm not even kidding.
Remember Lava soap? Then let me refresh your memory ~

Lava is a heavy-duty hand cleaner made by WD-40, first produced in 1893. WD-40 acquired the brand from Block Drug in 1999 who acquired it from Procter & Gamble in 1995. It was originally developed by the Waltke Company of St. Louis in 1893. Unlike typical hand soaps, Lava contains ground pumice, which gave the soap its name. The soap and pumice combination is intended to scour tar, engine grease, paint, dirt, grime, filth, and similar substances from the skin.

Because we didn't have Wikipedia back in the 70's, I never knew that much about Lava soap till now. But, you can bet that growing up on a farm meant my Dad and brothers washing their hands with Lava soap every single day. So hey, call me a pioneer, trailblazer, ahead-of-her-times, but as a teenage, when the first signs of acne were about to rear its ugly head (or face in my case), I had this wild, hair-brain idea to use Lava soap on my face. Yes, ground pumice on my face. And quite frankly, I'd like to think that is why I have so few acne scars. Wow, feels good to get that off my chest (or face) :)

Thursday, August 09, 2012

vintage Pyrex nesting bowls

Yesterday as I was sitting in Mimi's Cafe ~ you might want to click the link to see what I'm talking about ~ enjoying a most delightful tea party with my granddaughter emolyn, when I looked up and realized I had never photographed my vintage Pyrex nesting bowl sets on top of my red hutch. So I excused myself and snapped a few photos.
I chose not to nest the largest bowl from each set, just too wobbly. But I love the look of them displayed up there in all their vintage glory, especially the stories behind each set.

The first set was found many years ago for a couple dollars at a yard sale. The 2nd set I recently found at a yard sale for 2 dollars. The 3rd set was the set that started my Pyrex collection ~ from Randy's Mamaw Bean upon her passing shortly before we married in 1979. And then the 4th set was a gift from my Mom several years ago, that she found at a yard sale.
And yes, those are vintage Pyrex plates inside my hutch. I have 2 sets of each color ~ red, blue, chartreuse and grey.
You can read about them and the rest of my Pyrex collection ~ HERE.

Linking up with my favorite link parties ~

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

emolyn's pretend campfire

Emolyn's Fairy House is now her camping tent. Each week when she spends the night, she sleeps in her Fairy House, but now she pretends she's camping deep in the forest. It's the cutest thing. This morning when she woke up, she remembered the campfire logs I found on Craig's List several months ago for $5.00. So we plugged it in and she roasted marshmallows inside the tent. Yes, those logs have a flickering orange light plus makes the sound of a crackling fire ~ I know, for $5.00! And here's the funny part, when I called the gal that had it listed on Craig's List, I found out she lives in the far west valley, but she says she will meet me half way. When I tell her I'm coming from Tempe, she tells me she works in Tempe ~ and get this, less than a mile from my house! So we meet at the Circle K on the corner during her lunch hour the next day. She hands me the campfire logs. I hand her $5.00. The easiest transaction I've ever made. And seriously, looks and sounds like a real campfire ~ especially to a 4 year old with a vivid imagination.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

moments on a tractor

That would be me driving the John Deere tractor and my husband Randy stacking the freshly bound hay bales onto the wagon ~ back in July of '80 ~ on the family farm in Wisconsin. A month later we would celebrate our 1st wedding anniversary. Seems like a lifetime ago. 

Fast forward 32 years and that would be my husband driving a tractor for the very first time. He was like a little boy playing with big boy toys. This was one of many memorable moments while visiting our friends Tim & Lynn at their cabin near Prescott. 

Ok, so Tim's Kubota tractor doesn't quite measure up to my brother Ron's John Deere tractors on the farm, but hey, it gets the job done. And that's all that matters. And I gotta be honest, that tractor is pretty darn cute. But I can assure you, Tim was not going for cute when he bought it. Maybe Lynn. But not Tim. ha!

My niece Erica recently captured this adorable photo of her daughter Preslie riding in the tractor with her Grandpa. Now we're talkin' cute! Love this.

Monday, August 06, 2012

engagement photos

Miranda & Aaron's engagement photos brought me to tears. I was your classic mother-of-the-bride-to-be mess. Ok, I'll be honest, Kelsie Pinkerton's amazing photography does that to me every time, but this shoot was particularly meaningful. It's my daughter. She's beautiful. And her & Aaron radiate such crazy, sweet love for each other in every single frame! I can't imagine the wedding photos.
Anyway, be sure and check out Kelsie's photography blog for more stunning photos taken of their 5:30am session in downtown Phoenix. Ok, did I tell you that Kelsie is the best wedding photographer in the valley? I mean, seriously ~ SHE IS! And she is one of Miranda's dearest friends. Thank you so much Kelsie! 

And now ~ this is what Kelsie does better than anyone on the planet ~ what sets her apart from all the others ~ be sure to have your volume turned up ~ and a few tissues on hand ~

Didn't I tell you? I know... I'm the mother-of-the-bride and everything, but I get choked up every time. So, I'm not done yet... like you need another link about their engagement shoot... but this one is Miranda's blog and it's her words ~  click HERE.