Choose A Little Happy!

Choose A Little Happy!

I couldn’t help myself! I just LOVE it when the sleepy earth begins to wake up again after a long cold Colorado winter! The daffodils are always the first thing to have the courage to poke their sunny faces up and say, “HELLOOOO!!”

Next come vibrant and sugary little hyacinths! Their brilliant color and intoxicating perfume make me swoon and forget that the rest of the landscape is still asleep and very brown!

Today, I am taking my creative day to play in my studio and refill my empty tank. As I was drinking my hot, steamy cup o’ joe in the back yard this morning, I was instantly inspired by these little bits of loveliness that greeted me! Ahhhh…. sometimes it really is the little things that make the world seem fresh and new, isn’t it?

Makes me wonder how I can add a little bit of color and love to my world today!


Put a little spring in your step & create a “Happy”!
PS Don’t forget to submit your entries to win a free Large Tag Sign from Rendi! Check out last week’s blog entry for details! We sure are enjoying all of your creativity! We even received an entry from Australia!

Would you like to win a Rendi custom sign?
I am hoping that you can help me finish this sign! Several weeks ago I posted a fun new quote on my personal Facebook page. I was amazed at the fun that spontaneously erupted! It was such a party as my friends and family added their own additions to it!

Soooo, I thought it would be great fun to enlist the creativity of all of the fans and friends of Rendi! My hope is that you will share the post about this contest that is on our Rendi Facebook page with your own circle of friends and family! Share it on your own Facebook page! The more the merrier!

Here’s how it works.

1. Choose your favorite design (Option A, B or C) from the three signs that I have featured below.

2. Send me your SINGLE best addition to finish the list of House Rules and tell me which is your favorite design (A,B,C). It’s as easy as emailing me at

From your submissions I will choose THREE more additions (rules 4,5,6) to finish the list! If you happen to submit a duplicate suggestion, I will choose the entry that was submitted first- so don’t wait to enter!

3. Be sure to post your House Rule on the Rendi Facebook page under the contest post! Creativity is contagious! I promise you will love seeing what other people submit!

In two weeks, on Tuesday, March 29th, I will announce three winners (those who submitted the winners for Rules #4, #5, and #6) on the Rendi Facebook page and I will feature a short bio about them on my blog! The winners will receive a free wall tag sign of their choosing that includes the winning house rules!

Here are custom design choices A, B and C:

I can’t wait to see what fun ideas you have for finishing this sign! Good luck! Stay tuned!

A Fire, A Scrapbook & A Custom Picture Frame
Before I even begin this blog, I must just say that we will be praying for the nation of Japan and for the loss that they are suffering this very moment. I can’t imagine what it must be like for those families in the midst of such devastation. Please join me in keeping them in your prayers and hug your families and loved ones extra tight!

So, after our little mishap last weekend of almost burning the house down, I shifted into a spurt of post traumatic stress syndrome reassessment. To get the benefit of the full progression of thought here you might want to check out my last post. If I had to sum it up in a sentence I would say, “There’s nothing like fire to burn the gunk out your head and heart!”

Before the age of digital photos I used to box up all of my photos and put them by the door each time we left on vacation with strict instructions for whoever was housesitting. “If there is a fire, all I care about are my family pictures! Everything else can burn, but not these!”

When you live on the top of a forested hill in Colorado, each summer your biggest concern is fire. Here’s where I live. You can see that we basically live on top of the wood stack!

Anyway, I want to share a SUHWEET little project with you that my friend Donna Hannah shared with me last time she was visiting. Donna and I went to high school together. She just also happens to be one of our amazing Rendi Stylists! She says she’s not creative. I beg to differ! I think you will love her brilliant ideas!

Can I be really honest with you?
Do you ever feel like you need to reset your compass? Do you ever need to see things from a slightly different vantage point? Do you ever think that one more thing might just put you over that scary edge?


I have a great life. A really great life! Sometimes, I confess that I loose perspective of that fact. I get all caught up in feeling as though I am being pecked to death by a duck. So much of it for me is feeling pulled apart by all the demands and very real pressures of the day, the week, the month…. All of the should-a-s, could-a-s, would-a-s and then there is that pesky mean girl in my head who insists that I if only I was a better friend, a nicer neighbor, a smarter business owner, a more clever mom, a more disciplined woman with a muffin top…. you get it, right? Please tell me I am not a crazy!

I came to the conclusion this weekend after a near disaster that I need to stop and take a really DEEP breath- long enough to be thankful for my really great life. Thankful for the people that are in my life right now, for the ones that have come and gone and for those who are yet to come into my life. I think I needed a good reminder that life can change dramatically in a moment and that thankfulness is the key ingredient when it comes to appreciating even the dailyness and lessons of life’s challenges.

So let me set the stage…Those warnings about never leaving a candle unattended are for real!

I know! This looks like a free basing drug lab from a CSI episode, right? At least it’s what I imagine it might look like! It’s actually a picture of what happens when a candle is left next to a curtain that catches on fire and falls on the dresser that is full of finger nail polish and perfume and then falls onto the carpet and begins to set your home aflame.

That will get your attention and reset your compass! It’s kind of funny what goes through your head as you are trying to save your home from hungry flames- GET IT OUT!!!! I didn’t notice that the curtain and the window shade were no longer hanging in the window or that the candle was burning through the dresser top or that the window screen was gone and the glass was black. I just instinctively knew that if I didn’t win this one I would be moving into the La Quinta at the bottom of the hill! Which as I think about it would have eliminated the house cleaning and the need to organize and weed things out! And someone else would have made the bed each day…. ok, never mind.

But as I sat on my couch after the drama was over with my head full of fumes from all things plastic that had burned, my heart was filled with overwhelming thanks. Thanks for so many seemingly small and insignificant things that made all the difference in the moment and for the things that would have made THE difference even if the outcome had been life at La Quinta- like the people in my life!

I am convinced that at any given moment we all have a variety of relationships in our lives and each one has a unique status (thank you Facebook!) Right now in my own life, I have some great relationships, some that are in a bit of a pickle and some that have just been left unattended for any number of reasons. I also have parts of my life that are moving way too slowly and others that are moving at warp speed- did I mention that I would like to flip flop which ones moving at which speed? BUT a potentially devasting house fire has a way of crystallizing a whole lot of things for a gal!

I have a quick and easy project that I will share with you on Friday that was my way of working through some post traumatic stress syndrome. But for now, take a deep breath, tell that mean girl in your head to hush up, thank the Lord above for your life and for the family and friends in your life that really make the difference in the end!

I’d love to know what you are thankful for! What are you learning about your life these days?

How to Create a Vignette of Custom Picture Frames!
Happy Tuesday to you all- Tuesday night that is! So sorry for the delayed post! Today, technology was not my friend. I think every person in my small bucolic town was silently slugging it out for their share of the technology highway! Whew!

So, happy Wednesday for those of you who are not night owls!

Here is a little how to project that I hope will inspire you to begin experimenting with different ways to use Rendi’s beautiful custom picture frames and signs that you create online! The possibilities are indeed endless! From time to time I will be sharing fun new ideas with you all!

This project begins three custom picture frames and one custom sign that I designed from Rendi’s Pure Cottage Collection. Our three children are now 21, 19 and 16 and we could not be more delighted with the amazing young adults they have become! So I decided to CELEBRATE them!

I began with these products:

Whaaaat? A DAD frame? I thought this was about celebrating your kids? It is! That’s the beauty of Rendi’s custom picture frames! We make suggestions and categorize frames to make it REALLY EASY for you to find and design a perfect-one-of-a-kind, custom gift for yourself or for someone else, BUT most frames and signs are only limited by your creative imagination! This is how I actually customized this frame for our SONS!

Same frame with my customization! LOVE IT!

The next frame I customized for our daughter. It is a baby picture frame from the Pure Cottage Collection. Yes, Maddie is the baby of the family, but.’s my customization for the beautiful young woman in our family! Don’t tell her, but she will always be my baby!

And finally, I used this sign as a way to summarize my thoughts about home and family. Home is where each of our stories begin and the people that share that place in our journey may in fact be the ones who become the biggest part of us.

I plan to use it as the title or theme that ties my arrangement together both visually and thematically.

I am the first to admit that I am not a detail person! I am also a visual learner. Soooo, I have included lots of pictures to make this easy!

I always like to begin by laying things out on the floor before I hang them on the wall! Then, I can play with it all before I fill my wall with lots of holes! I also wanted to contain my vignette with an ornamental, carved picture frame for added dimension.

On the large wall I was planning on decorating, the containment of the larger frame helped to make my vignette a focal point rather than getting lost in a whole lot of empty space. This way, I can gradually build around it as I fill the wall to tell our family’s story!
I liked the heavier visual weight of the boys’ frames on the left!

Here’s a little hint about the large ornamental, carved frame I used. It was only $20.00! Get out! Not possible you are saying to yourself! Yep, every five weeks Hobby Lobby marks all of their frames down to 50% off of the original price! I am guessing that Michael’s might have a similar thing going!

PS- yes, I do in fact have a black and white diamond patterned floor. Some call it an obsession. I call it delightful!

So now for the hanging part:
The frame’s inner dimensions are 22″ x 28″ BUT you will want to measure the outside dimensions in order to find the middle for your sawtooth hanger (not as scary as it sounds)!
I LOVE my blue chick hammer for the little nails that need tapping in order to secure the sawtooth hanger!! It keeps you from flattening finger tips!

Up close & personal on the sawtooth hanger
Note that the brass brad (the smaller nail) comes with the hanger, BUT with this large frame I choose to use a slightly larger nail to make sure the hanger didn’t pull out of the frame considering the weight was a bit on the heavier side! Be sure that the nail you choose is still small enough that it doesn’t come through the front of your frame. That would be VERY SAD! The small bump in the middle of the hanger indicates where the middle is so that you can line it up with the center mark on the frame 🙂 Cool, right?

Now it starts to get really fun! Begin hanging your vignette!

Loctite putty is another one of my favorite decorating tools! It feels a bit like chewed up gum… I know sort of gross, but unlike gum, it removes easily and won’t harm the surface it has been sticking to AND you don’t need peanut butter to remove it, just peel it off and use the wad in your hand to pick up any little traces left behind! Be still my heart!

The beauty of Loctite is that once your frame is level a slamming door or a running body will not cause your vignette to wiggle out of squared perfection!

Easy to find at Target or Wallyworld
All you need is a ball the size of a blueberry!
Usually behind one corner is enough to secure it
First, my title/theme sign squared and secured
First, I placed my custom sign within the ornamental frame since it serves as the visual anchor and the foundation that I will build my frame vignette on. I also kind of think it is AWESOME that the title/theme sign gives voice to a foundational building block of family- our family!!

Here’s where the Rendi’s customized frames becoming the crown jewel in this simple, yet stunning decorating project!Second, the frame that will not need to have room for
a companion frame
I purposely did not line up with the edge of the frame with the edge of the sign in order to fill out the space in a more interesting way.

The last picture goes in! Once again, note that the edge of the last frame does not line up with the edge of the sign. I like the way it fills out the space much better than if they were all squeezed into a visual box within the large ornamental frame!

Such satisfaction! Such a beautiful way to CELEBRATE our children!
I do hope that this little project has inspired you! Imagine how fabulous something like this would be over a mantle or a buffet table?! I will revisit my story wall in the future to show you how I am building it in bite size pieces.

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