Monday, September 03, 2018

New and Improved Website

Please visit our new and improved website!

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Update: Life, Surgery, Cancer

It's been a really long time since I posted. It was never my intention to take such a long time off from my blog, but here we are in October and I haven't posted since the end of April.

Those of you that are friends or family are probably aware of what all has gone on in the past few months, but I wanted to give an update and catch everyone up to speed.

This past year has been one for the books. It seems like it has been one thing after the other. The only thing that has kept me from losing my head or crawling into a hole to hide has been the Lord. He has sustained me and my family in ways that I can't explain. There has been peace in times I never thought I'd have it, and comfort that only comes from Him.

So just to recap; Last August 31st, my grandfather passed away from a massive stroke. A little over three months later my other grandfather passed away. Then my grandmother passed away in April of this year. So, in a little over seven months, I lost three of my four grandparents.

After my grandmother passed away in April, once things settled down a little, it was the end of the school year. Things were really busy, and frankly, I just didn't feel like posting anything or being creative. That's when I decided to take the summer off from blogging, fully intending to start back after school started back.

That brings me to my surgery. I had a major surgery (more about that later) on August 15th.  While they were in there, they found a hiatal hernia and repaired it as well. So instead of having maybe a couple of weeks of down time, I ended up having to take it easy for around five weeks. I was in a lot of pain and didn't have a lot of energy. Finally, around four weeks out my pain went away and I started getting my energy back. I'm seven weeks out now and feel great. Recovery took longer than I expected, but I'm doing great now.

Some of you may remember me posting about my mom's cancer a few months ago. She has a rare form of lymphoma called Follicular Mycosis Fungoides, which is a cancer of the hair follicles. She's had it for four years or so maybe. Around a month ago, she called and told me and my brother that she needed to talk to us. She drove down and we met at my house. She told us that she had had a PET scan and that it showed cancer in many parts of her body. It's in her lungs, liver, chest, spine, spleen, leg, arm, bones, jaw, and cheek. She also has bone lesions on her back, ribs, and hip.

I was not expecting to hear this news. She had managed her cancer for a while, but now it seems it's just taking over. We meet with her oncologist tomorrow to find out if all of those spots are metastisization of her current cancer, or if it's a secondary lymphoma in addition to what she already has. We'll also know more about treatment options depending on the results, although, my mom doesn't want to do chemo.

I'd really appreciate prayers for her and for our family as we continue to walk through this. I'll update as soon as I know something.

Thanks in advance for your prayers and support!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Southern Holiday Life Magazine: Spring 2016

Hello! Guess what time it is? It's SHL time! The new edition of Southern Holiday Life is available to view online. Once again, I got to contribute to this issue and I couldn't be more pleased with how this issue turned out! 

This Spring/Summer issue has lots of awesome articles! There are crafts, parties, recipes, and tons of great wedding and shower ideas! You won't want to miss this!

I had two articles this time; a floral monogram and a spring front porch. Here are a couple of sneak peeks!

Floral Monogram Craft

Spring Front Porch

Ready to read these articles and more? You can read Southern Holiday Life in its entirety HERE. Go check it out and tell me what you think! 

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

An Organized Potting Bench

About four years ago, my husband built a potting bench for me using some free pallets we had. I used that bench off and on, but never on a consistent basis. Last summer, I stained it with some gel stain that I had left over from another project, vowing that I'd finally put this bench to good use. But, it still sat mostly unused.

Fast forward to a couple weeks ago. I had been working in my yards, potting my planters with spring and summer blooms and I really needed a place to work that was organized and would make things easier (and confine the mess to one area). You may remember my potting bench inspiration I shared not long ago. I used those images to inspire me to pull together my own little organized potting area, and all on a budget. (Because I'd rather spend my money on pretty flowers!)

The large items I used, I already had on hand; the potting bench and the chain link gate. I knew I could use the gate to hang tools or other items from, and it had been sitting unused since we first bought our home and took down the chain link fence in the yard. 

I pulled all my pots and tools from all of their random stashes and brought them all together in one place. 

 I hung some fresh herbs by tying garden twine around metal pots (from Ikea). This is easy to change out if needed and easy to get to for cooking use.

My hubby attached metal plant hooks to both sides on the bench for me. I can hang actual hanging plants if I want, or in this case, an empty basket housing unused pots and on the other side, my watering can.

A bucket holds garden tools with plenty of room for more items if needed.

The lower shelf holds unused pots and buckets, and a few birdhouses for good measure. 

Shopping List:
*Galvanized metal chalkboard, Target Dollar Spot
*Metal planters, Ikea
*Metal "Garden" bucket, Target Dollar Spot
*Metal watering can, Lowe's
*Plant hangers, Lowe's
*Slate plant markers, Target Dollar Spot
*Metal bucket with scoop, TJ Maxx
*Mini clay pots, Dollar Tree
*Rosemary Wreath Topiary, Sam's Club

I'm so glad I finally got this done. It's a pretty and functional space I can use throughout the growing season and it cost very little to put together. Now, to go enjoy this beautiful weather and sunshine! 

Linking up to:
The Creative Corner at Curly Crafty Mom

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Am I Doing This Right?

Last night, my husband and I were watching an episode of Counting On on TLC (the Dugger girls' show). One scene showed Jessa, her husband Ben, and their little baby boy, Spurgeon. He was being changed and he started cooing and smiling at his Mama.

"Do you ever miss that?" I asked Jared.

"Yes." he replied. And he meant it.

I immediately started tearing up and getting emotional thinking about my two daughters. They are no longer little babies that we can hold and feed. We have long been out of diapers and haven't been subjected to a Doodlebops episode in years. (The Doodlebops were Katlyn's favorite when she was a toddler. She called them the Bop-bops.)

As hard as those years were for me, they were very precious and I'll never get them back. Time has flown by. This summer, my girls will be eight and ten and I can't help but wonder:

Am I doing this right?

Even though those first years were very tiring and I felt like I was drowning sometimes, it seems that the parenting part was a lot more simple. Now that I have two mini humans with thoughts and feelings and ideas and heart issues, I can't help but wonder if I'm directing their hearts in the right way. Am I doing more than giving them just yes's and no's?  Am I teaching our beliefs and values more than I'm demanding that they do their chores? Am I laughing with and enjoying them more than I'm fussing at them to clean their room and pick up after themselves? 

Some days I don't know. Some days I feel like I'm failing them. Some days are overwhelmingly more wrought with tears and frustration than sprinkled with laughter and smiles.

I'm figuring this out as I go and I pray that God would help me to teach them right from wrong and why those things are right and wrong (the heart issue) , to seek Him in all things, to be a good friend, to be unselfish and caring, to be loving.

It is overwhelming if I rely on my own strength. It's terrifying! But neither I nor you have to parent in our own strength.

Lord, help me to parent in a way that reflects Your heart for us.Show me how to navigate my girls' hearts as they grow and mature. 
Please help me to rely on Your grace and strength when I feel overwhelmed.
Please give Jared and I wisdom as we raise the precious gifts. Amen. 

Monday, April 11, 2016

Why I Blog


When I first started Cultivate Create, I had grand dreams of daily inspirational posts and lots of DIY how-to's. I planned to document taking our fixer upper from dated and drab to done and daring. While I have documented that, the fixing up process now comes in spurts rather than a steady stream. But, over the course of the last two and a half years, I've discovered my love for crafts, pretty tablescapes and parties. Because of my blog, I started being a contributor for Southern Holiday Life magazine and hope to expand that to freelance writing for other publications. I've learned a lot about photography and am still improving in that area. But, one of my favorite things is connecting with you! I love to get feedback from readers and  questions that hopefully I can help answer. I'm not an expert and didn't go to school for design, however, I love design and DIY and have become a student of it. I've immersed myself in that world, and while I'm still learning myself, I love to pass along what I have learned to you guys.

My Favorite Things About Blogging
*Sharing tutorials for DIY and craft projects.
*Learning more about home design and DIY.
*Writing! (I've loved writing since I was a little girl!)
*It motivates me to accomplish things around my home. 
*Sharing resources for shopping for your home.
*Developing Cultivate Create into a source of income for my family.
*Sharing ideas and motivation for making your house a home. 
*Sharing ideas about how to decorate on a budget. 
*It enables me to have a "portfolio" of my work and writing.
*Offering free printables and other ways to decorate for "free."
*Documenting our home and family life. 
*Using it as a creative outlet.
*Encouraging others.
*Sharing party ideas and DIY party decor tutorials.
*Sharing gardening and landscaping tips.
*Connecting with others. (people who are also passionate about crafting and DIY projects, other writers and bloggers, other moms and families, anyone at all!)

I've been thinking a lot about Cultivate Create's purpose and trajectory lately, hoping to soon migrate over to a self-hosted site with a new and improved design as soon as my web designer has an availability. I've also been brainstorming for future posts as well as preparing to share some projects I've been working on around our home. So, my question for you guys is:

What kinds of posts would you like to see in the future?
 More DIY projects? Tutorials? Kid crafts? Family friendly activities? You tell me!

I've asked this question before on my Facebook page and took note from there, but I wanted to again here. Please leave a comment below or you can comment on the link to this post on my FB page or send me a pm or email ( would greatly appreciate the feedback as I work to improve Cultivate Create. 

A challenge for fellow bloggers:
Want to reflect and remind yourself why you started blogging? Write your own "Why I Blog" post and share with hashtag #whyiblog. Be sure to let me know! 

Before I leave you today, I wanted to quickly share with you just a few of my favorite posts so far from this blog. Check them out. I hope you enjoy! Be sure to join this site or follow by email to never miss a post. (Both on the right sidebar.)

How to Stain Vinyl Shutters


DIY Fringe Party Backdrop

Dough Bowl Succulent Planter

Waverly Chalk Painted Dresser

Spring Monogram Letter

Thursday, April 07, 2016

10 Functional and Fabulous Potting Benches

The past couple of days, I've been working on my flower beds and planters for spring. There's so much that has to be done; weeding, pruning, mulching, edging. And the list goes on. My favorite part, however, is going to the plant nursery and choosing new flowers for my pots and landscape. I had so much fun picking out some new varieties this week! I can't wait to see how they do throughout the spring and summer growing seasons. 

A few years ago, my husband built me a potting bench and I've never used it consistently. This year, though, I wanted to change that. You see, flowers make me happy. And doing anything related to my flowers makes me happy. Give me the dirt and sunshine and I'm in Heaven! So, I decided to gather some inspiration in order to create my own little potting bench haven.  I hope this gives you some inspiration,too!

1. Trellis Backed
|| Via ||

2. Repurposed Fence

3. Green with plant envy
|| Via ||
4. European Goodness
|| Via ||
5. Simple with Sink
|| Via ||
6. Repurposed Nesting Boxes
|| Via ||
7. Pretty Palettes 
|| Via ||
8. Wood and Metal
|| Via ||
9. Shabby Chic
|| Via ||
10. Terra Cotta Heaven
|| Via ||
Which one is your favorite? I love something about each one!

Follow this blog with bloglovin

Follow on Bloglovin


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...