The Boys’ Room


I never got to show you guys the kid’s finished rooms!

If you remember from previous pictures, originally we had this room set up with one bed….then when we got the call that we were going to have a sibling set that consisted of a girl and two boys, we did some quick changes in the matter of days. We moved these beds in, which a friend from church gave us for free, and I painted and distressed tons more frames so the boys’ wall could be filled with fun things. It was really special to look around and see their room filled with things I created, refinished, painted.


We love all three of our kids so much. It is a hard road. A lonely road. But it is OUR road, and in God’s grace, we continue to put one foot in front of the other, and look excitedly to when the adoptions can be finalized.

Creating Beauty in the Kitchen and Crafting Beauty


Wow, it has been so long since I have written that I didn’t even remember my password anymore! ๐Ÿ™‚

Yes, I am okay….my absence first started because I had a concussion that lasted over three months. And throughout that time we were busy getting our house ready for our home study inspection in order to get our foster license, as many of you already knew.

August 31st changed our life forever….that was the day our three precious kiddos came to live with us. Yes, we went from 0 kids to 3 kids in a day! ๐Ÿ™‚ We continue to adjust as a family, and look forward to the day we can officially adopt them…usually a 6 month waiting period, so we are about halfway through.

Life is very different now. I don’t have much free time. ๐Ÿ˜‰ My priorities have changed. Cooking is different with kiddos in the house. I haven’t gotten to do a DIY project in months. Though I do still have many DIY ideas up my sleeve! ๐Ÿ˜‰

doug and Ic

And I know this may freak some of you out, but yes, I cut 16 inches off of my hair! ๐Ÿ™‚ I became a mom. I chopped my hair off. ๐Ÿ™‚

Miss you all!



DIY Playroom Sign

I continue to love making our home a special place for our future kiddos! (You can read about our foster adoption journey on THIS PAGE.)

Pinterest, oh how I love thee! ๐Ÿ™‚ Seriously, my friends were on Pinterest at least a year before me….

I tried signing up once,

took one look at it,

didn’t get what everyone liked about it,

and then never went back.

That is, until I realized how GREAT Pinterest really is! ๐Ÿ™‚

I came across the idea on Pinterest of making a playroom sign….it was a painted one, and I decided to switch the words up a bit and make it with a frame, 7 pieces of rope that I staple gunned to the back of the frame, mini-clothespins, and card stock. (Similar to how I made this ARTWORK DISPLAY.)

Our upstairs playroom area is red, purple, white, and black, so I used all different types of fun fonts in those colors to tie it in nicely with the room. I really, really love it!

Here is what it says:

Welcome to our playroom where we giggle, use kind words, play nice, tell the truth, laugh, use our imagination, include everyone, make memories, make messes, clean up after ourselves, try new things, help others, read books, say please, thank you, and I am sorry, act silly, share, watch movies, and have fun.

Heading over to Fiesta Friday with my fun new DIY creation!

What do you think? Have you made something like this?ย 


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Stuffed Sweet Potato

Sometimes the best tasting things are those you create when you have yet to go grocery shopping for the week and only have random ingredients to choose from. ๐Ÿ™‚

Yellow Sweet Potato + black beans + Cilantro + creamy avocado sauce = Surprisingly Delicious

Not only delicious and easy to make, but lots of nutrients and good-for you-stuff wrapped up into one meal!

Thought I would bring some to the party. What party? Well, Fiesta Friday of course! Its been a few weeks, but I am excited to be back with my fellow party-goers….can’t wait to see what you all have brought!ย 


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Art Display

Ah, it feels nice to be sitting here, looking at my computer screen, writing to you.

For the majority of the past 2 1/2 weeks, I haven’t really gotten to look at a computer screen….or a telephone screen…..or my kindle screen……or a t.v. screen. Why?

Well, that is what happens when you slip down the stairs and get a concussion. Yes, I am totally okay….just had to deal with major head pain, nausea, light sensitivity, sore eyes, and tired limbs for most of that time. I am feeling much better, which is why I am even able to be on here, and the majority of my symptoms are gone.

I don’t know how athletes deal with getting concussions all the time….I never, ever want one again. You should see me walking down the stairs. I am oober careful, making sure to hold onto the rail the whole way. ๐Ÿ™‚ I know this makes my hubby, friends, and other family members happy to hear. Every time someone has come over they have said, “Are you sure you want to walk upstairs?” ๐Ÿ™‚

Okay, now that I have gotten my MIA status out of the way ;-), I am super excited to show you something I have been working on for our future kiddos!

I wanted a place in the house where they could put up their artwork…where they could walk by and see it and know we care and enjoy seeing their creations. This is what I came up with in our hallway:

Notice the Pablo Picasso quote in between the two frames. I came across it and just knew I had to incorporate it into the design! There are a lot of different vinyl stencils with this quote, but this was my most favorite because of its artistic flair.

I found these two frames, took some rope and painted it red, and then used a staple gun to attach the rope to the back. I love, love, love how it came out!

I can’t wait to someday see our kid’s artwork in these frames! ๐Ÿ™‚ โค

What do you normally do with your children’s artwork?ย 

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DIY Scrabble Wall

“Will it be easy? Nope. Worth it? Absolutely!”

I love this foster adoption quote. With Doug and I being so excited, I think sometimes people may wonder if we realize how hard it is going to be, because it really IS going to be hard. I don’t doubt that we are often going to be driven to our knees in prayer. I don’t doubt how much we will need the support of those around us. I don’t doubt that there will be nights we will cry ourselves to sleep. I don’t doubt that there will be sleepless nights where we are up with our kiddos who cannot sleep. But this quote says it all! Of course it is not going to be easy! But it is so completely and absolutely and totally worth it!!!

I am almost done with room #1 for the kids…just adding some finishing touches like the ones you see above. We wanted to make this area with the red rug a place where they can sit and play and create and dream and imagine, and I wanted to somehow put words on the wall that would encourage that. I had all different ideas, but this is what I finally came up with…a scrabble wall made by using white cardstock, which I designed into turquoise circles with a really fun font that looks like paint. Then I used some fun scissors I have to make the edges, and then used masking tape on the backs to stick them to the wall. I love, love, love how this came out!

So far I have 9 words up there (I reserve the right to add more if I think of any ๐Ÿ™‚ )…..Imagine, Create, Dream, Read, Sing, Explore, Play, Laugh, Build. We want our home (and their rooms) to be a safe place where they can be children….where they can have fun, be silly…….ah, that made me think of another one I want to add….Dance! ๐Ÿ™‚

I recently hosted a baby shower at our house and my friend Helen let me keep these awesome decorative hanging balls that she had bought. ย I was so excited because they match perfectly in this room! I thought it would be fun to hang them from the ceiling in the middle of the red rug. I love it!

Excited that we are in this next phase….our home study that begins this week. We have heard that it usually takes a total of three months.

We continue to pray for our children! Our hearts already love them! โค And we are so, so grateful for all of the support and encouragement so many of you have given us!


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More Distressed Furniture and a Foster Adoption Update

First, a quick foster adoption update: we were assigned our case worker this week! Many of you have been praying with us for that….thank you! We really like her, and had previously met her at our training time in February. We are grateful to be working with Antioch, a Christian foster-adoption agency. So, we begin our home study this upcoming week! This means I continue to get the house ready…

After painting and distressing all the furniture in room #1 for our future kiddos, which included 2 beds, 1 dresser, 2 bookcase type things, 1 nightstand, and lots of photo frames, there was no way I was going to do it for room #2. The good news for that room was that we owned furniture that would work and didn’t need to be painted, whereas we didn’t for the other kiddo room. The only problem was that we didn’t really have a nightstand….well, until my good friend Jamie and I found this one at a thrift store for $9.99, and that is when everything changed….

Of course I saw the potential in this beat up, not so pretty looking piece of furniture. You should have seen me….I pushed it around the big store until finally a person who worked there asked me if I wanted them to keep it at the front while I finished shopping. ๐Ÿ™‚

As soon as we had a sunny and warm enough day, I got out our sander, and began this new project.

I absolutely love, love, love the way this nightstand turned out! For more information on how to DIY distressed looking furniture, go to this blog post.

I didn’t think I could possibly love a room as much as the turquoise, red, grey, & white one I designed for kiddo room #1, which I still need to show you a final picture of. But I have to tell you, I am loving this bluish white, dark blue, and lime color combination! The color I used on this nightstand is the same color that my mom used on the non-accent walls in that room when we first moved in. This was my hubby’s home office, which my mom so kindly painted just for him. Mom, I am so grateful this room was already painted and that I didn’t have to do that! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Okay, so once I saw how awesome this turned out and how great it looked in the room….well, lets just say that I quickly made plans in my mind for the other furniture. ๐Ÿ™‚

So, yesterday I carried this bookcase to the garage, sanded, painted it, distressed it, sealed it, and carried it back up. Hubby had no idea I was doing this, so I was super excited to surprise him. The before…

The after…

Of course I had 5 different paint projects going on at once yesterday ๐Ÿ™‚ , and the fun lime green frame was one of them:

More to come from this room :-)….

My Fiesta Friday friends, I hope you enjoy looking at some more of my projects as you munch on all of that fabulous, creative food! Angie, I always look forward to this party….thanks for all the work you and the co-hosts put into this!ย 


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Fresh Basil, Garlic, & Tomato Mini Pizzas with Homemade Sauce

Sometimesย Often, lunch can be a difficult meal for me. When you are eating low-gycemic and using fresh ingredients, there are many typical lunch ideas that don’t fit the bill. Plus, who doesn’t get tired of eating the same thing for lunch each day?

So, recently I was looking for something different, delicious, and easy to make. This is what resulted. ๐Ÿ™‚ Loved the taste of the homemade sauce mixed with a little bit of cheese, fresh tomatoes, and fresh basil!

Simple recipe; lots of taste!

Hope my friends and fellow foodies at Fiesta Friday will enjoy this! As always, thank you Angie and co-hosts!

Fresh Basil, Garlic, & Tomato Mini Pizzas with Homemade Sauce

*Created by Lori atย Creating Beauty in the Kitchen


  • Flour tortillas (or a gluten free equivalent)
  • 2 cans tomato paste
  • Red cooking wine (optional….I like the rich taste it adds)
  • Crushed red pepper (if you want a kick to it)
  • Honey
  • Fresh garlic, minced
  • Fresh Basil
  • Mozzarella cheese
  • Tomatoes


  • Combine the tomato paste, honey, garlic, and cooking wine in a bowl. (I encourage you to experiment and see how much of the different ingredients suits you and your family.)
  • Layer the sauce onto the tortillas.
  • Cook in oven for about 10 minutes, putting the cheese on for the last minute or two, so it can melt.
  • When the cheese is melted and the tortillas have hardened, remove from oven and garnish with tomatoes and basil.


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DIY Distressed Photo Frames & Second Kiddo’s bedroom

You have seen a bit of the red, grey, turquoise, and white kiddo’s room….I thought it was time to give you a sneak peak at the second children’s bedroom. Though these might seem like boy colors….don’t worry….if God blesses us with a girl for this room then I will make sure to girly it up with special touches like hanging fun tissue paper pom poms from the ceiling. ๐Ÿ™‚ โค

This room has been my husband’s office and was painted especially for him by my mom (Thanks Mom!!) when we first bought our home. So, it has a dark blue accent wall you can see a little bit in this pic, and the rest of the walls are a white with a slight blue tinge to them. I took the above photo frames, which looked nothing like this when I began, and used the paint from the other walls, so that they match perfectly. Since the furniture in this room is wood colored instead of painted, I distressed these by only using the one paint color, instead of having a second one underneath it. For more details on how to distress, go HERE.

What do you think?! How do you like this second room so far?!ย 

Creating a Room for our Future Children

I can hardly believe I am saying this, but I have almost finished one of the rooms for the kids! Yes, there is another room I have been working on too. ๐Ÿ™‚ ย (For those of you who don’t know, we are going through the foster-adoption process, hoping to adopt a sibling group).

So, what all have I been doing in there?

  • I painted the entire room
  • I painted, distressed, and put together two twin beds
  • I sanded, painted and distressed a nightstand
  • I painted, distressed, and put together a dresser
  • I painted and distressed a shelf
  • I sanded, painted and distressed a bookcase/shelving unit
  • I sanded, painted, and distressed lots of frames to put on the wall and filled them with fun art

So, what is left for this room?

  • Painting and distressing one more dresser
  • Getting the mattresses and making the beds
  • Hanging the turquoise frames on the walls

Not bad, huh?

I really love the way a distressed finish looks on furniture! It is sort of ironic to start with a brand new unfinished piece of furniture with the goal of making it look old. ๐Ÿ™‚ Love the way both of these beds came out!

I’m also having fun with little details. Since the room is grey, red, white, and turquoise, I took this plain white shelf and used turquoise washi tape to add a little flare to it. This matches perfectly with the frames I painted and distressed that I am going to put on the wall.

So, let me show you a before picture of the room when we bought our house. What you won’t see in this picture is that one of the walls was purple and one had a tree with pink flowers painted on it.

We just couldn’t do it…..had to change the colors! ย And we love the colors we decided on! This is the first room I have ever painted all by myself. Love the red accent wall!

My mom has been hosting a virtual baby shower for us since there is so much we need in order to get ready for the home study (the next step), and many generous people (some of whom I have never met) have been blessing us and our future kiddos with all sorts of needed things: first aid kits, comforters, car seats, pillows, music, baskets, baby safety things, toys, books, movies, car organizers, stuffed animals, sheets, rugs, bath toys, etc. ย My heart is overflowing with gratefulness! You can see some of the stuff in the picture above.

I love this little corner with the red rug. I haven’t totally decided yet, but I think I am going to do some sort of decoration on the wall there that has words like: Create, Read, Explore, Have fun, etc. It is a cozy little area where they can sit and play, enjoy a good book, or create something fun.

And I just had to add this picture of some stuffed animals a friend got us…aren’t these little guys the cutest?! We are praying that things like this will be a blessing and a comfort to our future kiddos.

So I am bringing this room to this week’s Fiesta Friday….as always, a big thank you to Angie and the co-hosts! Hope you enjoyย looking atย the room make-over and all the DIY distressed furniture, while you are snacking on all that yummy food at the party! ๐Ÿ™‚ ย Looking forward to seeing what you all create…you are an inspiration and continue to expand my foodie horizons! ๐Ÿ™‚


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