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Adventure Time

We’ve been doing some more running around the great state of Michigan so I though I would share those adventures before my phone gets too full of pictures. Click over to this weeks earlier post if you missed it to check out our previous adventures. 

First off we headed to the little town of Battle Creek to visit some family and of, course hunt down some Pokemon (it’s a healthy addiction right?)


They have a beautiful little river side park called friendship park, and of course another brewery. This one called Arcadia, they make an excellent cherry cider. 

We also hit up a few shops in southern Michigan including this wonderful little art gallery  and shop in Marshall called EastEnd Studio


And our all time favorite coffee shop


On Friday we had the privilege of attending a beautiful wedding at the Fredrick Meijer gardens in Grand Rapids.



 If you ever have a chance to visit here you must do so. 


We headed to the venu early so we could have the chance to look around the gardens. 


Not only is it an amazing botanical collection they also have one of  the most amazing and extensive modern sculptural collections in the United States. 



Primarily we wanted to check out the Japanese gardens. 


It’s the newest and biggest section and it is absolutely stunning. 


 I think I may finally have inspiration on how to landscape our back yard this fall.


 Though I don’t think I’m skilled enough for bonsai on this level… Or any level… The plastic level maybe. 


Today is a very welcomed rainy lazy day then tomorrow we head for the dunes at Lake Michigan. I’m looking forward to sharing that with you next week. 

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A house is not a home…

…without a wreath. I’ve made lots of wreaths. I think I’ve got at least two blog posts on wreaths. You can find them here and here.  I figure now that Mr. Smith and I are finally settled into our own home it’s time I made a wreath for us. 

  
I used a pretty basic wreath form. As you can see here I already wrapped  a branch with some black twine.

  
I then just wrapped a couple of sections with some burlap ribbon to serve as my base.

  
Then it was time to pick out flowers and bits and bobs.

  
I felt like this flower needed a little embellishment so I added some hands of a clock. 

  
In fact I added the gears in another section. It’s the clock that I turned into a lantern last year, which you can see here.

  
I also warped a few keys into the vines

  
And easy as pie we have our own wreath for our own house. Finally 

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Spring fever 

Also known as hay fever here I think, yellow snow has a different meaning in the south. As you can see in my header I even took the liberty of making a pollen angel. 

  

We did get real snow at one point this year a major anomaly for us. 

You saw in my post a couple weeks ago I’m so terrible at keeping house plants alive (not to mention keeping cats out of them) I just got all fake ones 

Outdoor plants are a different story. Especially here, they pretty much take care of themselves.

  

So with a few old pots and coal pails I gave my porch a facelift 

  

A couple of ferns a couple of Gerber daisies and two flats of flowers was all it took. 

  

Now if only the pollen would abate 

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Greenery

I found a present from one of my cats earlier this month. I’m not going to show it to you because it happened to be a pile of puke filled with leaves. Leaves from a flower arrangement  Mr. Smith got me. 

Needless to say I will not be getting any flowers anytime soon. Nor will I have any plants in the house. Which is a tragedy since I love plants, though a boon for the plants themselves since I tend to kill them (My black thumb skills even extend to cacti ) 

  
On the plus side they make some pretty amazing fake plants these days and you can find them pretty cheap this time of year. I recently got an orchid for our library

  
And one for the living room alcove, I’m debating painting the back wall of that alcove the same dark blue the dresser come entertainment center is soon to be. What do you think? 

  
I also found some succulent pieces. This one is perfect for a centerpiece in the dining room, not to tall to obstruct conversation and not to wide to obstruct eating. And if it does need to be moved for a large dinner it’s rather cute on the window sill as well

  

One of my friends used to work at a nursery and I managed to snag this awesome bulb (as in flower bulbs) crate from her.

  
 I gave it a nice wash of milk paint ( you can see another post on milk paint here)

  
I put a little four dollar strip of fake grass in the bottom and screwed it to the wall making sure to anchor it in the studs. 

  
Add to that my stained monogram from a while back and a succulent container and my office finally has some “artwork”. The Beemer approves 

  
I even snuck in some greenery on one of my office bookshelves (“gasp” a bookshelf with no books)

  
Not to mention the cutest desk lamp. And those blades of grass are pens 

 ” Hooray!” for a bunch of plants that the cats have no interest in and that I can’t kill!  It’s a win-win-win

Oh and I’ve also managed to sneak some greens into my diet. It’s a good thing too, all this new found energy has got me on a roll. 

  

Seriously I’m addicted to this stuff. It’s like thin mints in liquid form when you mix it with soy milk, one 8oz cup a day and I legitimately feel more energized. I have never taken “supliments” or vitamins and I avoid caffeine like the plague because I’m a naturally anxious person and it just seems to make my anxiety worse.  But after I had the chance to try this for three days I could feel the difference in my energy levels despite it being caffeine free. I had improved digestion and didn’t crave sweets since this gave me a daily chocolate fix. I was sold and ran out and got a full size. Ok I’m done trying to sell you on this I’m not normally one to do that, I just really like it and thought I would share. 

I’ve got a quick paint update for later this month as well as finishing up my entertainment center and what should be a very interesting frame arrangement for our oh-so-empty hall way. I’ll catch you later. 

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Clothes Pin-terest 

As you saw in my last blog I’ve been scouring Pinterest for DIY Christmas ornament ideas so Mr. Smith and I can have some memories for our first Christmas as husband and wife (maybe even in our first house if everything goes to plan) 

I came across a few involving clothes pins the other day that looked pretty easy so I thought I would give them a go.

  
Start by taking apart some (by some I mean 8) wooden clothes pins.

    
Then glue the flat sides together like so

  
I followed that up by staining them  along with a lot of other Christmas ornament supplies by using diluted paint. That’s completely optional though

  
This is also completely optional. I wrapped the edges of the pins with washi tape. 

  
Next lay out your pins in a star/snowflake pattern. It’s easiest to first do four at 90* angles from each other and four in between those

  
  
Then find a bauble to glue to the middle on each side.

   
I chose to use a small fabric flower topped by a wooden snowflake

   
Just string some twine or ribbon through one of the small holes in the pins or glue one on and you’re all set

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Coloring The Town

I missed a post last week. Been working on some personal things. Also been working out some stress.

I’m a bit late to the boat but I just discovered coloring books for adults. They looked super pretty, this one in particular 

  
I thought if nothing else it would be cheap artwork to fill gaps in a gallery wall. 

Turns out it’s pretty relaxing too. 

My first try was with markers, not too great but still relaxing.

  
Then I moved on to colored pencils, nothing fancy just crayolas. 

  
But much better results and still just as relaxing.

  
Turns out coloring inside the lines can still be relatively creative 

  

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Zombie Clowns

Mr. Smith and I have been on a little mini hiatus for the last few days. I had hoped to get a post up before leaving for said break from the real world but I wasn’t really sure what to write about. 

  
At first I was reluctant to pick up blogging and my hobbies again. To be fair I was reluctant to do anything. I couldn’t even eat. Now I’m finding I relish the little things; in particular the hobbies that bring me and especially others joy. So of course I’ll be doing a blog about how my hobbies are helping me through everything. I guess every blog I do is about a hobby or project, I just have a new love for them. 

  
But of course now I have a mini vacation to blog about . For Mr. Smith’s birthday  we spent some time with his aunt and her family down in Florida. As I’ve said my family has been amazingly helpful with getting through this so I’m incredibly grateful Mr. Smith has some family relatively close by.

  
They live in an area that I’m quite familiar with because my grandparents used to live there. We had the opportunity to go to Legoland one day… 

This is going to sound like an

  
Type of thing, but I actually went to Legoland before it was Legoland. On a side note I had been to Legoland once it was Legoland as well, I was just excited to see how Mr. Smith would like it since this was his first trip. 

  
Legoland is built around a place called Cyprus Gardens which I had been to several times in my youth and your admission to the park includes admission to the old gardens. Don’t get me wrong Legoland is cool, (more about it later) but if you don’t bother going to Cyprus Gardens while you’re there you are missing out. 

  
Mr. Smith didn’t really bother taking any pictures in Legoland but his eyes lit up and the camera snapped away when we got to the gardens as you can probably tell by all of these pictures.  If you’ve never seen a Banyan tree it is an amazing sight to behold.  Of course he had to have a creepy tree in this post. 

  
Legoland itself was toy heaven, secretly (or perhaps not so secretly) neither of us have matured in the last 20 years so we are still stuck in the 8-14 age bracket that Legos cater to… our vacation budget was spent accordingly. And that’s pretty much all we did was shop. The weather was terrible thanks to this time of year so a good amount of the rides were closed anyway. I’m extremely happy I wore my bathing suit under my clothes because I never dried out.

  
(Han definitely shot first) 
Our haul from Legoland however was epic…. Oh I mean Awesome!

  
I’m personally of the master builder disposition whereas Mr. Smith tends to follow directions. He has plans involving Kra-Gl but I’ve got a piece of resistance around here to stop him.