May 9, 2016

A Fairy for Sure!

I wasn't sure who would move into our garden house, but this morning I got my answer while reading the sweetest book of poetry that I got for Mother's Day. It's a fairy for sure!


May 8, 2016

A Garden Friend Dwelling

First off,  Happy Mother's Day to our Mommas and all those other Mommas out there reading this. I hope you are all having the special day you deserve!!!

I'm so excited to share a project I finished yesterday! I LOVE whimsy. Especially when it comes to magical little garden features...

I have been dreaming of a gnome/fairy abode for a while now, so I figured it was finally time to build one! It is a super simple project, and the grand total that I spent on this project was ZERO dollars!!! I used all things that we had around the house, including a bunch of scavenged natural materials.

This project would be a BLAST with kids!!!!!

Here's what I did...

Step 1:

Find a piece of scrap wood. I believe my piece of scrap was a 1 x 6 board.  Saw off the corners and sand down all the edges to round it out a little bit. I did absolutely no measuring on this project, because I didn't care if things were exactly even.

{  This picture is from before I sanded the edges...  }

Step 2 (optional):
Use chisels to carve a design into your door. I wanted some relief on the door in case my paint came off in the future. I also like the older weathered look it gives it. I drew my pattern on with pencil and then, went over it with a v-shaped chisel.

These doors don't have to be perfect, and I think they look better if they're not! So even if you are not skilled in this art (which I am not) or don't have good tools (mine are rusty) give it a shot anyway!

Step 3:
Paint or stain your door, and add any decorations you want. I chose a base color for my door and filled in the carved lines with a brown paint to make them stand out. If you choose not to carve anything out of the door, you can just paint the design on instead.

I thought about putting on a fun knob, but decided the scale would be off. Then I thought a round pebble would be cute, but I could only find jagged ones. So I ended up going with an empty snail shell (please check to make sure there's not a snail in there first!). It won't be the most durable option, but we have plenty more lying around the yard, so I can always replace it.

You could stop here and move on to install your door (aka lean it up against a tree or fence), decorate the surroundings, and be done. It would look something like this:

OR you can give it a more built in look and create a porch roof too! Read on...

Step 4:
Gather sticks of all shapes and sizes. Use clippers to cut the sticks into pieces. Start by laying two sticks parallel to each other, stretching your chosen length for the roof. Cut a bunch of smaller sticks to lay across them. Attach them all with hot glue. Leave a little room at the ends in order to attach your roof supports next.

Tip: I had some visible hot glue that was rather iridescent looking (which I didn't like) so I threw some dirt on it before the glue finished drying. Worked like a charm. I wish I would have done it in more places!

Step 5:
This was the trickiest part... Find 4 sticks to be the corner supports for your roof. I looked for sticks that had a V at the top, cut the bottoms to a desired length creating a slope to the roof, then hot glued them onto the roof too. Remember... It's okay if it turns out a little wonky. Let your inner perfectionist have the day off for this project and just roll with it!

Step 6:
Assembly! I leaned it all up against the tree in my chosen spot and surrounded the roof supports with rocks. I didn't anchor it to the tree in any way at this point. I figured I'll see how it fares and it it falls down, or some pesky squirrels knock it over frequently, I will either hot glue it or nail it (using a nail gun with super skinny nails) to the tree. We did get a storm with heavy winds last night, and it made it through, so far so good!!

Step 7: 
DECORATE! Ahhh! This was so much fun!! My inner child was completely delighted. There's tons of fairy garden decor on the market, but I wasn't looking to spend any money on this and really liked the idea of going all natural. I just scavenged around the yard looking for tiny things to decorate with. Making tiny floral arrangements from the "weeds" in my yard and putting them into walnut pots made me want to squeal with joy.

A few things I grabbed were:
  • Rocks
  • Whilrybirds
  • Empty snail shells
  • Leftover carving curly-q's
  • Walnut shells
  • Wildflowers
  • Little pods (I have no idea what they are, but they're similar to tiny acorns... I put them on the roof.)
  • Sticks
  • Dried leaves
Some other great items you could use:
  • Acorns
  • Pine cones
  • Pine needles
  • MOSS (I need to add some moss into mine. A moss welcome mat would just be perfect.)
  • Oak tassels/catkins
  • Mushrooms
You could build porch furniture out of more sticks and hot glue. The possibilities are endless, and so is the fun!


I LOVE that I can keep adding to it and redecorating as much as I want.

We can see our little door from the kitchen window and it's brought a magical, yet quaint feel to our backyard.

The dwelling is built, and I cannot wait to meet the gnome or fairy that is going to take up residence!!!



May 1, 2016

A View of April (and end of March) 2016

Since I am no longer doing a monthly post to Hazel, I'm sure you are wondering how you are going to get your Hazel picture fix... Never fear! The monthly photo posts are here!

I am beginning a new series of posts to wrap up each month with our photos that haven't already been shared in other posts (including photos of all of us, not just Hazel).

I have a little catch-up to do with the March photos that were taken after Hazel's birthday, so we have a month and a half of photos for this first installment.

{  Love her belly button!  }

{  Sometimes your head just  gets so heavy and you need a little help holding it up  }

{  Sneaky thing loves to eat dirt.  }


{  Had some splendidly sweet, rare moments of a sleeping baby on my chest lately.  }

{  Mismatch day at school  }

{  I can't get over this little lily pad toad. ha ha ha!  }

{  Blurry, but beautiful moments often are.  }

{  The rare date night!!  }

{ She's been full of mini tantrums, like when I tell her she is not allowed to play in the recycling, }

{ Baby Rubeus }

{ Professional unpacking skills }

{  I had to include this awesome woodpecker I see pretty frequently.  }

{  My little gardener  }