March 23, 2011

slipcover accomplished!!!

so we have this chair.
it's a lazy boy
i have a love/hate relationship with it.

but i definitely love it more than hate it. it's the perfect place to take a nap or curl up and it's sooo comfortable. it's a lazy boy, right?

but it's not the prettiest thing because, well, it's a lazy boy.

but when you're young and married and in school, any free furniture is pretty much beautiful in my eyes, if you know what i mean.

so anyway, when we got married 4 years ago, my mil and sister in laws wrestled an awesome red slipcover on it to make it match the barn and it looked great (have you ever tried to put a lazy boy slipcover on? i was wrestling just trying to get it off!) but i was ready for a change.

i've looked everywhere for a slipcover that's straight on the bottom, like not elastic, but no such luck. so last summer when dirt cheap got a huge shipment of target linens, i picked up 2 thick cotton tablecloths for just a couple bucks (total steal!) thinking i'd try to sew one. well, i'm a total dork when it comes to trying new projects and read and read and think about it and plan it but get totally scared to actually cut into the fabric. i even bought { pink and polk dot's } 'the lazy girl's guide to custom slipcovers' e-book and it was awesome with step by step directions and lots of pictures but i was still scared. and then spring break came and i finished all my other projects and got bored enough to finally try it out and - you know what -

it wasn't that bad!!!

it's sooo far from perfect but it's covered and it's bright and a good change and it was a great learning experience.
you can see the seams in one of the corners but it's nothing a throw pillow can't fix if-you-know-what-i'm-sayin
and i can take it off and throw it in the wash with some bleach anytime it needs it.

whooo that was a lot of words. on to the pictures -

before -

but really this is the before because this is what it looked like most of the time...

and after -

woohoo for one more thing off my list and fabric out of my pile!

March 22, 2011

moving prep...

so we've got project eat-out-of-the-freezer going on around here. with 2 months before the big move, let's just say we'll be eating a lot of pork chops in the next couple weeks. know any good recipes?

actually it's more like project clean-out-everything and it makes me soooo happy. i'm using up all the mini lotions collected from hotels this year, eating cereal that's been in there longer than it should have, and actually planning meals around what we already have - novel idea, i know.

so right now i'm eating budget $aver sugar-free pops and, for the record, they are not good. forget the budget. spring for the fudgsicles. but you know i can't just throw them away :)

alright, i'm off to clean out some veggie burgers for lunch. yum. i'll be using lots of cheese and ketchup.

March 21, 2011

summer dresses

my sweet friend abby was tired of this curtain she had in her kitchen, so we decided to make it into something new. how 'bout a little dress?
so i used a dress to see about how wide we needed it and cut two rectangles

serged them up the sides

made 2 little casings - one at the top and one in the middle

and threaded some elastic through

a quick hem

and added an easy sash
and wa-la! fun summer dress!

so this was a bit too easy to make. i could become addicted. planning to make myself a couple tomorrow...
(hope you like it, abs!)

March 19, 2011

under the sea

our second graders have been busy again, working on our oceans exhibit. for the last 9 weeks, we've learned all about the different ocean layers, the animals that live in each layer, the food chain, and pollution. our learning expeditions to the aquarium have been my favorite all year and i was just as amazed at the imax as the kids were! so fun. so here's what our halls will look like for the next 9 weeks. i'm loving it!

the food chain using all recycled materials

how cute is that sea turtle!

crazy abyss creatures

check out our beach :)

definitely enjoying my days left at normal park!

March 16, 2011

it's been so long since i've run...

that i forgot how to do it

and totally busted it on a busy road during 5:00 traffic right as a huge line of cars was driving by. embarrassing.
talk about embarrassing - in college i fell right in front of bulldog deli, one of the busiest restaurants in starkville with huge windows all the way down the front. blood was dripping down my leg and elbow but i had to jump up and run/limp away like nothing happened.

actually, today doesn't seem that bad anymore.
at least the weather is perfect.

March 12, 2011


there's been a whole lots of nothing interesting going on around here...

i got to go to a christ tomlin concert with these sweet girlies i work with. trying to soak up all the time we've got here.

after a horrendous week with 3 midterms and 2 papers in 3 days, james is enjoying his spring break. he's perfected his biscuits and they are amaaaazing. ( fyi - they include sprite and sour cream but they're good)

these bloomed all over chattanooga overnight it seemed and they are b-e-a-utiful!

i've been a *bit* overwhelmed this week with

report cards

oceans module

illinois school applications

and illinois teaching certification applications

but scholastic orders always make me giddy b/c i'm totally dorky like that

and there's 5 days until spring break

and yesterday was friday which means happy cart. we literally look forward to this all week.
best. thing. ever.
caffine and homemade sugar right when we think we're not going to make it to 3:00 on friday. i love the pta

i've been working on a few new projects, but nothing too interesting yet.

and we'll continue to trust the Lord when our car need a new motor and everything else that connects to the motor. He knows how much we have in our little savings account so we have no doubt he'll provide.
upside - it felt like we were riding a roller coaster on the highway when the motor went out and i looove roller coasters.
(the car in better days...)

well, with all that exciting info, i'm off to play with this. oooh yea. that's a miter saw in our apartment. our neighbors are going to love us.

March 5, 2011

chicago bound

so i've been trying to write this post for a week, but truth is, i'm not all that great at writing and i'm having trouble putting into words just how exactly amazed and ecstatic we are. i'll probably use too many explanation points and smiley faces, but here goes:

james is going to wheaton and we're moving to chicago!!

we got the email only a couple weeks after his interview and about 5 weeks earlier than expected, so we were a bit shocked to say the least. in true james-and-jess style, james calmly turned to me, tossed me his phone, and said read this. he sat shocked, blank expression while i jumped up and down screaming (which i'm sure our downstairs neighbor totally appreciated).

for those of you wondering how in the world we even got started down this path, here the gist - the plan was to move to chattanooga for 2 years for james to get his masters in counseling psychology at richmont and then apply to doctoral programs. well, in december (right before applications were due) we found out that the 6 integrated (christian) counseling programs in the country will only take about 30 hours of a masters program. there was no use in james finishing his 72 hour program here if it wouldn't even count.

so last minute, total shot in the dark, not expecting to hear anything, no real hope, james applied to 3 schools.

and got 3 interviews.

oooh yea. i'm so proud.

i loooove a good adventure. and this is definitely a good one. don't you just love it when God's plan totally blows your plan out of the water? seriously. i'm overwhelmed with what an amazing plan he has for our lives. it's definitely bigger than anything i ever dreamed.

i've had an inexplicable peace and excitement through this whole journey. i know the Lord has been preparing my heart for some time because i've had an incredible peace about 2 things specifically:

1. i hate cold and it's cold in chicago
2. i hate debt and there's debt coming our way

i'm not worried a single bit (this coming from the one who, at 9 years old, was so worried about getting enough sleep at night, that i couldn't sleep at night. my parents had my bed covered in matthew 7 and every other do-not-worry verse in the bible)

the Lord totally cleared a path for us when we moved to chattanooga:
  • we found a crazy cheap apt that we could actually afford
  • our neighbor - that we did not know - let us stay at his house for 2 weeks until our apt was ready
  • i got a amazing job that i did not deserve. seriously. anytime i tell somebody in chattanooga where i work, they ask me how i got a job there. i can only brag on God.

i'm confident that he will do the same when we move to chicago.

it has been so cool to watch james blossom this semester in counseling (do boys blossom? maybe grow? succeed?) either way, every time i talk to somebody at his school, they're bragging on his skills. and he really enjoys all he's learning. it's such an absolute joy to watch because we've been praying for soooo long for direction. mr. ronnie would always ask - what's your passion? all james could say was - people. and we've finally put it all together. he's good at this. he loves it. the Lord has definitely made him for this. why couldn't we figure it out earlier? God's timing is perfect even when we don't understand.

james met the vice-president of richmont last weekend and guess what he said - "so yoooouuur the guy who's leaving us for wheaton - there was weeping and gnashing of teeth in our last faculty meeting over you leaving." we don't understand why it took us so long to figure this all out but i'm so so very thankful that james has something that he's passionate about, that he loves, and that he's good at. it's really a joy.
(he's so going to make me take this out when he reads it. but i can brag for a minute until then :)

so wanna hear the coolest God-thing?
we got the email from wheaton and they said the official packet would be coming in the mail. well, james mentioned to his dad that because of different living expenses, it would be great if i could make $6,000 more in IL. so the official packet comes and some of the shock has worn off so i'm nonchalantly reading through the acceptance letter and


$6,000 scholarship we didn't even apply for. totally unexpected. i mean, do you think God has this under control or what?

my prayer through this whole process has been Psalm 5:8 'lead me, o Lord, in your righteousness, make straight your way before me.' he didn't just make the way straight, he practically lit up the runway for us.

of course, moving emotions come in waves and i'm so sad to leave chattanooga. we have some amazing friends here. my school is ridiculously awesome, the girls i work with are an answer to prayer, james' professors are great, our tiny apt is perfect, the mountain views are my favorite... i love chattanooga. this has been such a sweet time for james and me and i will always look back on it and smile.

it's also sad that we won't be able to hop in the car for a weekend trip back home (although we expect lots of visitors - there's a direct flight from jackson to chicago that's only and hour and a half and pretty inexpensive so it would actually be shorter to fly to chicago that to drive to chattanooga :) family means a lot to us, and it's hard to move away.

but oh. my. goodness. i'm excited to see what's next.

in conclusion (since i'm sure that only my sweet mom and mother-in-law are the only one's still reading this) -

God's plans are so much bigger than ours.

He is so worthy of our trust.

and i'm so excited to see what he's got planned for us next.

i'm pretty sure it won't be boring.

March 1, 2011

a little ring bling

i love rings. the bigger, the better. and what's cuter than buttons? especially 50%off?
put 'em all together and you get a little ring bling :)

i took the elastic band saved off of my latest shoes from target and tied it around my finger

hot glued it to the back of the button

and covered it with a little felt

and that's it! (don't look at the nails - some nail biting decisions this week)

definitely not the hardest project ever and maybe not the nicest, but my little girls at school love them and they're just a little bit of fun! who doesn't need that?

avandia recall