Favorite DIY Projects of 2013

Sunday, December 29, 2013

2013 is coming to an end?! HOW????? My mother told me these days would come... when time would fly right by. I didn't believe her until now. Wowsers, does life go fast or what?! So 2013 was pretty awesome for my little blog. I thought we could do a little review of the year so I could share some of my favorite moments of Lovely Little Life's 2013. That ok with you guys? Good!!!

5.) DIY Washi Tape Serving Tray - This project has been one of my most viewed posts to date, and was one of the easiest projects I have done! It has a special place in my heart, because it really helped Lovely Little Life get off the an amazing start in 2013.

4.) DIY Fabric Softener Dryer Balls - This may not have been the most popular post, but it was still one of my personal favorites. These little dryer balls are seriously AH-MAZING and have made such a difference in how long our clothes stay in the dryer! If you're looking for a quick and easy way to cut utility bill costs, you must check out the tutorial.

3.) DIY Yardstick Box - I adore this DIY yardstick box project and love how versatile it is! Use it in a craft room, home school room or make a teacher's day by gifting it at the end of the school year!

2.) DIY Burlap Ribbon Fall Wreath - I have made quite a few wreaths in the last two years. I've loved them all, but this one has got to be my favorite. It stayed on my door from September 1st - December 1st and even then I hated to see it go! 

1.) DIY Upholstered Wingback Chair - This chair... it is everything! I'm proud of myself for sticking it out and getting it done no matter how hard it was and regardless of the time it took to complete. It deserves every bit of the #1 spot for the year!

Now, what was YOUR favorite Lovely Little Life project of 2013? I would love to hear which one would earn your vote! Chow for now!


iPhone Recap : November 2013

Sunday, December 8, 2013

I'm only about a week behind on writing this post, but better late than never! So without further ado... here's a little bit of what my life was like during the month of November.

We had a beautiful, but short lived Fall this year. That's pretty much the norm in the Midwest, so I did my best to enjoy every last sunny day we had this year before the cold set in for good.

The start of the holidays is definitely the best part of November for me. Holidays = Family. That is all I need to say!

And what would the cold weather months be without the occasional coffee-gram?! Mmm... so much yumminess in one little cup!

Thanks, November! You were lovely!


DIY Magazine Holder

Monday, December 2, 2013

Today I am so excited and honored to be guest blogging over at Living Well Spending Less for their Handmade Holidays series! L.W.S.L. is currently featuring a different blogger every Monday who will be sharing a simple and frugal handmade gift idea. This week it's me! I'm still pinching myself that I was asked to participate! 

The gift idea I'm sharing is how to make this easy DIY Magazine Holder. It's a knock off of one I saw on Etsy a couple years ago that was selling for $40... mine cost under $10! Make sure you head over to Living Well Spending Less to get the tutorial and to find many more amazing handmade gift ideas!


Handmade Gift Idea : DIY Gold Dipped Mason Jar

Monday, November 18, 2013

The Christmas season is *almost* here! YAY!!! I love this holiday! It sounds cliche, but my favorite part of Christmas is giving gifts to the people I love. I always put a lot of thought into what I give, and try to choose gifts that are meaningful and/or useful. In my opinion, nothing makes a gift more special than when it is handmade! There are never enough ideas when it comes to handmade gifts so this Christmas season I have decided to do a few posts on that subject.

The first handmade gift idea I want to share is this DIY Gold Dipped Mason Jar. Both mason jars and gold are majorly trending right now (which I LOVE!). The best part about this gift is that it can be repurposed all throughout the year to match any season depending on how it is filled! I pretty much adore how it turned out and it was literally the easiest craft I have ever done.

Step 1 : Apply painter's tape to the top half of a mason jar and then spray paint the bottom half. Let it sit until the paint is dry (about an hour to be safe).

Step 2: Remove the painters tape, fill up the jar with potpourri, and tie a festive ribbon around the top. If you don't want to use potpourri you could fill it with peppermint sticks, pinecones, cookie mix, etc...

What do you think?! Is there anyone in your life that would be thrilled to receive this handmade gift?


7 Ways to Make Lemonade out of the Lemon of Infertility

Wednesday, November 13, 2013


>>> If you are new to Lovely Little Life and haven't read my story you may want to start HERE and HERE to get a little background on me and my journey before reading this post. <<<

To all my readers, 

The same is true of this post as is always when I talk about infertility. I have chosen to share this part of my life not to complain or gain pity, but rather as an attempt to be an encouragement to others who may be going through something similar or for that matter anyone going through trials. My ultimate goal is just to give the glory to God, and try let him use me during this time of testing. Thank you so much for visiting! I sincerely pray this blog is a blessing to everyone who reads it!


Since writing THIS post back in July of this year entitled "9 Things Infertile Women Want Women With Children To Know" I have received hundreds of comments and emails from women affected by infertility from around the world. It greatly saddens me that there are so many women that know the pain that infertility brings, but I'm thankful that God has given me to opportunity to be a blessing to others during this trial. Which brings me to today’s post...

Making lemonade. This topic has been on my heart a lot recently. Infertility is a lemon. I big fat bitter one. It is so hard to imagine that anything good could come from such a painful time in our lives, but I sincerely believe that the good is there. We just have to look for it. Let me share a few of the ways I think we can make lemonade out of the lemon of infertility. 

Wait... before I start I just want to say that this post is meant for myself just as much if not more than it is meant for whomever reads it. I absolutely do NOT have it all figured out and I am by no means trying to "preach" my message. Just like you, it is a daily struggle for me to focus on the positive side of infertility. However, one thing that I've learned during this trial is that unless I zone in on the positives and focus on the blessings that God has given me versus the very few things that He hasn't then I am miserable. The only way I have personally been able find peace is to trust that He has a reason for all of this and to believe that I will be stronger for it. I love you ladies and just want to be an encouragement. I hope you know that. So here we go...

1.) Get better not bitter.

Bitterness is probably the thing I have struggled with the most when it comes to infertility. It is so easy to let those thoughts creep into my mind... you know what I'm talking about. "Why is God doing this to me? Why would God give that lady a child when she doesn't even want it or isn't going to be a good mom? It's not fair that so-and-so gets pregnant without even trying and we have had to spend thousands of dollars and still have nothing to show for it." The more I let these thoughts run rampant the more angry and bitter I feel. Towards God, towards other women, towards people that don't understand what I'm going through, etc.

We have to make the choice to stop these thoughts and to focus our energy elsewhere. Instead we have to trust that God knew we could handle this and that He has a plan to make us better through this trial. He is trying to teach us, but if we are too busy being bitter He can't. Ladies, I am totally talking to myself on this one. I know this is HARD... but with God all things are possible. We can do it. Get better not bitter. You'll be thankful you did.

2.)  Use infertility to strengthen your marriage.

Anyone who has gone through infertility knows that it can take a major toll on a marriage. It is a frustrating, heartbreaking, and emotional trial that can tear apart a relationship if you let it. Or it can make your bond even stronger. So strong that you can face anything together. How amazing would it be to walk out of the other side of this trial and still be holding hands? How good would it feel to know you're relationship is forever stronger because you stuck beside each other during the darkest times? I'd say that lemonade would taste pretty darn good.

3.) Be a blessing to tired mamas.

There aren't many things that make me happier than cuddly babies, adorable toddlers, and energetic kids! One of my friends recently suggested to me that I should use that love of children to be a help to mamas who may need a kid free moment every once in a while. I'm not sure how I didn't think of it myself, but I'm really happy she wasn't afraid to suggest it! I think it is a fabulous idea and it's a win/win for everyone. I get my baby fix and the mamas get some much needed "me" time! I realize that not all of you are in a place emotionally that you can do this, but if you are then I say go for it! My husband and I have decided to do this as a couple... our first "gig" is this weekend. We couldn't be more excited and the parents couldn't be more pumped about the free babysitting! :)

4.) All those things you won't be able to do once you have kids... do them NOW!

This one sounds like a no-brainer, but I constantly have to remind myself of it. I tend to focus so much on the next phase in life that I forget to enjoy the part where it's just the two of us. Even as I type this I'm feeling like I should stop writing this post and go plan that trip to Vegas we always talk about. YOLO, right?! :) Just make it your goal to be able to look back in 20 years and think "Wow, that was a really hard time, but we had a lot of fun and made some great memories while it was just the two of us!".

5.) Learn to be patient and content.

Patience and contentment are two things I never had before infertility! I am so thankful that I'm finally learning these qualities. They go hand in hand with that perfect peace and true happiness that is mentioned in Isaiah 26:3. Patience and contentment will help you be a better wife, a better friend, and someday a better mama. Learning these lessons might taste like a bitter lemon now, but I promise they'll produce a lifetime of the sweetest lemonade you've ever had!

6.) Use this time to prepare for the future.

The plus side of seemingly being the last one to start a family? You have more time to plan, observe, and save! That baby WILL eventually be here (whether it be through conception or adoption), and when that day comes you'll probably wish you had more time to prepare! Take advantage of this season of life to gain wisdom, set financial goals, and prepare for that day when God says "It's a go!".

7.) Be an inspiration to others.

When you go through a trial you will fall into one of two categories... discouraging and sad or brave and inspiring. I know we all want to be the latter, and with God's help and a whole lotta effort we can do it! You don't have to let this thing called infertility define who you are. Be better than that. That doesn't mean you can't be real with people when you're hurting or that you can't have a bad day. It doesn't mean you're super woman 100% of the time... it just means you do your best, you keep your head held high, and you don't give up. Be someone that motivates people to be thankful for what they have, because you're thankful with much less. Be THAT person. Don't settle for having to suck on a bitter lemon. Go to the grocery store, buy some sugar, and make lemonade!


Quick and Simple DIY Placemats

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Over the weekend my Mr. took a trip to the lake with his dad... I missed him like you wouldn't believe, BUT I was able to catch up on some crafting in his absence which was kind of great. I even got to play around with my new sewing machine! As I've mentioned in previous posts, I'm still super new at learning to sew so when I attempt something new I make sure to stay very basic. I figured that placemats would be pretty easy to make since they just consist of straight lines and after looking at THIS tutorial by Wait Till Your Father Gets Home I decided to give it a go. Thank goodness I did, because I love the end result and they were even simpler to make than I realized! So here's what you do... 

Step 1 - Pre-wash and press your fabric.

Step 2 - Measure and cut your placemats. I wanted my placemats to be 13" x 18" so I cut them into 14" x 19" pieces to allow for a 1/2" hem on all four sides.
Step 3 - Press and pin a 1/2" hem on each side of your placemats.

Step 4 - Hem the placemats... and you're done! Easy peasy and just in time for Thanksgiving!


iPhone Recap : October 2013

Sunday, November 3, 2013

It is already November?!?! I can hardly believe it. This year has flown by.. especially the month of October. Speaking of October, how about a little recap?

I got to see my brother in October which was definitely the highlight of the month! It was a quick trip, but we took advantage of every minute and made lots of memories.

Fall is now in full swing... pretty leaves, apples, and pumpkins are just a few of the reasons I love this time of year! It's defnitely one of my favorite seasons to document on Instagram because there are so many vibrant and beautiful colors everywhere! I'll be sad to see it go. 

Yes, this a totally random picture of a blueberry muffin, but if you could taste it you would know it's not just any old muffin. These things were melt-in-your-mouth bites of goodness! Get the recipe HERE. It's a must try!

And that's all I've got for today. I wasn't very good at documenting my life this month yet again. I must work on that, mustn't I? Until next time!


Things I'm Loving Thursday : DIY Halloween Treat Bags

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

My husband and I love Halloween... we seriously adore seeing all kiddos in their different costumes, giving them a big handful of yummies, and watching their faces light up every time we do! No, we aren't creeps! That's just how it is when you haven't been able to have your own kids... you get all excited to be around other people's. LOL!

Wow, I really can't believe Halloween is just one week away though! But hey, don't sweat. You still have time to come up with an awesome treat bag idea! In fact, let me help you out with that. Here are a few of my favorite DIY Halloween treat bag ideas this year that are sure to impress the littles. Now I just have to decide which one of these we are going to do!

DIY Printable Treat Bag Toppers
DIY Journaling Card Treat Bags
DIY Printable Treat Bag Tags
DIY Printable Ribbon Treat Bags
DIY Gold Letter Treat Bags
DIY Ghost Treat Bags
DIY Candy Corn Treat Bags
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