projects

The Perfect Anniversary Gift

Year one of marriage has been awesome for Ben and I, but as many of you newlyweds out there can attest to, we are not just rolling in tons of money. Don't get me wrong, we have what we need, and more than what we need most times, but our budget is very tight from time to time. So when it came time to give anniversary presents, I wanted to create something sentimental, but budget friendly.

I am a mushy, emotional kind of gal. I save every ticket stub, sentimental note, and most things that others would label as "trash". I love a gift that makes me remember a special moment, or time with the ones that I love. So I wanted my gift for Ben to capture some of my favorite memories from our journey together so far. So I whipped up this little print. It has maps of the city where we got engaged, married, and honeymooned. It is really simple, but so cute. 

I used Photoshop to do everything, and loved how the finished product turned out. I designed the print myself, and had it printed at a copy shop in town, for just $3! 

Then I went to Dirt Cheap (it is sort of like Goodwill but is a salvage store, so they have items from Targets that have been affected by storms...so on) and bought this large frame for $2.50!!!



I spray painted the frame, added a matte (only $4, and it is too small...oops!) and then added the print. There you go, super cute and personal anniversary present! This was so simple and really cost efficient, and it only cost me $9!! 

So if you are Photoshop savvy, take your stab at creating this print or something similar! Or if you are not, I will gladly create one for you. I have had several people ask me to design this print or something similar for them, and would love to create one for you! Just email me at rach.elizabeth.915@gmail.com to place your order. 

Also, I love this gift for a one year anniversary print! (not that it is bad for any other year) BUT, traditionally one year is the gift of paper, so this is perfect if you and your hubby choose to go the traditional route! 

What are you favorite gifts to give? Are you a sentimental gift giver like me? 

Another great anniversary gift is one of these custom cutting boards that my sweet husband makes! Ben is always brainstorming more projects for us to tackle, and this was one of those ideas I threw out there, and he started. Each of these cutting boards are wood burned by Ben, and he takes such time on each one. He puts a lot of love into these little guys, so the winner of this awesome giveaway will be one lucky person! Want to win a cutting board? Enter below!

personalized-cutting-board-giveaway

Enter to win below, as always all entries will be verified! Open to all US residents older than 18 years. Good luck! The giveaway will run until July 1st at 12 AM. Winner must claim their prize within 48 hours of being emailed.


Handmade Highlight - Half Pint Prints

We finally made it back to good ole Mississippi last night. It was sad to leave the beach after such an awesome and relaxing trip, but I was really thankful to be back home. Ben and I spent a good bit of time talking through goals, and my blog/design schedule over the weekend so I was really motivated last night to hit the ground running with these new goals. (I have some exciting posts in the works with more info on this, so stay tuned). 

As most of you who have been around my little blog for awhile know very well, I LOVE handmade. My love for handcrafted goods goes much deeper than just pretty colors, and trendy items. I love supporting women who love Jesus and desire to use their gifts to serve him and others with them. My heart behind this Handmade Highlight series is to introduce you to women who are doing just that. I hope to connect you with creative women and small business owners that are doing big things for the Kingdom of Jesus, and that are super talented as well. 

Today, I am so excited to introduce Amber of Half Pint Prints to you all. You may recognize Amber from last month's sponsorship post. She has been hanging around Oh, Simple Thoughts for a little while, and is such a joy to know. She is very talented in designing prints, invitations, and more!





Here are some questions that I asked Amber to help you get to know her a little better, and some pretty photos of her lovely products!!




What inspired you to pursue opening an Etsy Shop?
Back in 2007 I was just leaving my career as a graphic artist for a newspaper, to stay home with my brand new baby boy (who's not so new and not so little anymore). Here and there I would design things for family, friends and some previous customers I had from the newspaper. I loved being able to create again. After tons of encouragement from my man and a baby that finally began to sleep, I began this little shop. It's my little corner of the web where I can create, share my love for the Lord with others, and still share my day with my boys at home.



What has been the greatest joy for you in this business?
I love that I get to have some small part to helping people celebrate big moments in their lives. And that I get to do it all in the comfort of my own home with my boys running around at my feet. Motherhood had always been a dream of mine, but I needed some sort of creative outlet and my shop was the perfect fit for that. 


What are your favorite items to make?
Oooh...so I started out just designing invites, but as the years have gone on my favorite thing to design are art prints that you can post around your home that remind you just how great our God is....and just how much He loves you. I keep a running list on my desk of things that I've heard and have inspired me. It's my go to when I'm ready to sit down and create something new.


How do you stay inspired?
I think you can be inspired daily by people around you, reading books, listening to speakers, looking in your backyard. I'm all about taking it all in and creating reminders of those moments. Whether it's a great quote you've heard, a favorite verse or just recognizing the beauty in the simple things...I want to remember. 


What is one thing the Lord is teaching you right now?
Haha....this one's easy! It's been on going for a while now. I AM NOT IN CONTROL. I'm a bit of a control freak at times and He's really showing me that I don't need to make lists of what I am going to do or schedule my entire day. All I do is create disappointment for myself when my plans don't go how I want ( and let's be honest they don't most of the time when children are involved). I went through 4 years of infertility trying to control every aspect of everything. It was emotional and it was hard. Then when I was at my lowest I finally let it go...and let God do his work on me and my heart. He ultimately was going to control whether we had a small family or large one a successful business or a unsuccessful one. All to say...I now know just how much He loves me and that His ultimate plan for me, at least now, is to show me that He's got this. And that I just need to glorify Him in all He's done and is still doing for me. 


What is one piece of advice you would give to small business owners?
Just be you. There are people out there trying to do everything (I was one of them for a while), but if you're you, you will find that perfect group of customers for your shop and they will keep returning. If I could add a second piece of advice, I would say talk to other shop owners. There are so many out there who are willing to share advice and help you get your shop on your feet.

Thanks so much Amber for sharing your heart today, and your awesome talent. I have several of Amber's prints in our home, and the are gorgeous. You much head over and check out her Etsy shop, like now! :) And stick around this month to see more from Amber, and maybe even a giveaway of one of her products later this month! (wink, wink)


A Harvest of Blessing
Check out my sweet sponsor this month, Madison of The Wetherills Say I Do"

musings in the form of old fashioned letters.


Dear Benjamin Caleb (my hubby), yesterday was rough. I was emotionally in a funk, and sick on top of that. You brought me to tears when you told me you were taking me on a nice date for us to have alone time together. Thank you. Dinner was wonderful, and our Office session after provided lots of laughter. You get me, and I cannot put into words how grateful I am for that. Thanks for always tickling my back at night and participating in pillow talk when I am not sleepy (and you are usually wiped out). You are the coffee to my morning (and only you and I truly know how special that is).

Dear Mom and Mike, not totally sure if ya'll will even see this, but HAPPY 5 YEAR ANNIVERSARY! I hope ya'll are having a blast in Charleston and enjoying some time away together. I love you both so much and am so thankful for the time the Lord has given you together. How has it been 5 years since this day? Love you both so much! I still cry from laughing so hard when I watch this video...cannot believe ya'll pulled this off...Have a wonderful day! (Why were all my siblings and I laughing...check out this video to find out why...it was a complete surprise to us as you can see)


Dear Stitchfix, my second fix with you is in the mail and on the way to our house. And I am pumped!!! I have gotten so many referral credits (you guys rock) that I will be able to keep more pieces in my fix this time. Thanks for continuing to give my wardrobe and style a breath of fresh air and helping me step out of my box a little. (want to know more? Check out my first fix here. Also, I loved Jessi's post on Stitchfix this morning. Check it out over at Naptime Diaries)

Dear Kat, Thank you so much for letting me design your blog. It was so much fun to try my hand at computer design and I think you have awakened a new passion inside me. I am seriously considering beginning to take a small number of blog design projects on. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to bless you by doing something I love and for helping me put my computer coding classes to use. You rock, can't wait for you to really jump in and start blogging. It is a whole new world and so rewarding, and I know you have so much inspiration and joy to spread to so many through your thoughts. Love you sweet friend. 

Dear sunshine, you have brought me walks to the bagel shop, walks to fun breakfast dates, and walks around downtown with some of my favorite college gals, basically you have brought a lot of walking. But with all the walking you have brought a slower pace around these parts, and a joy to everyone you warm up. Thanks for shining bright this morning. 

Dear One Little Word, I have just encountered you through some new blogs I have been following. I love what you represent, and the focus that you can offer me to focus on one area of growth rather than being overwhelmed with a million different areas. So I have decided my OLW is RELAX. I often cannot just go with the flow, I find myself enslaved to my schedule and planner. Yet, I see that the Lord is good, he promises to provide me with exactly what I need for today. So today I am praying to relax and rest in the Father's provision. May that be enough, and if change comes or a curve ball is thrown my way, may I gracefully turn to the Father for strength to relax in him and not panic at the change. (Link up with us over at Bailey Jean's blog )

 One Little Word Blog Hop
Dear weekend projects, we are coming for you. Our church retreat has been postponed which means a whole weekend to work on all our projects. To the end tables, you have proved to be a time consuming task, 5 tables from pallet wood was not as easy as we thought, but I am so thankful for how beautiful you will be once we finish you and stain you. To the crochet pillow, I will have you finished this weekend and I am so excited to get to combine crochet and sewing into one project. 


XOXO,

Rachel