Thursday, August 28, 2014

Nature Builds at Missouri Botanical Garden

A week before school started, I wanted to get in some last minute summer activities that I had originally planned. At the Missouri Botanical Gardens, they are currently displaying an exhibit called Nature Builds. Nature Builds displays larger than life sculptures of flowers and animals that are made from Lego bricks in the Climatron. Above you'll see a photo of Nathan and Autumn outside of the Climatron.


We are getting ready to go in!

preying-mantess butterfly

Here is a preying mantis and a butterfly on a pink flower. Each lego sculpture had a little card by it that would tell you a little about it and how many legos NYC artist Sean Kenney used to build it.


The giant monarch butterfly on milkweed was my absolute favorite sculpture!

woodpecker Bird-feeder

A wood pecker and a bird feeder with a few squirrels watching the birds.


Me and my beautiful daughter in her pink kimono dress I bought her when we were in Chinatown in NYC. :) Nathan took this photo and got just our faces, lol!


We also saw a lizard eating in the Climatron. The sunlight was pouring in, so I didn't get the best photo of the little guy.

Nat-creeper Aut-making-a-tent

After seeing all of the sculptures in the Climatron, there was a really neat craft area for the kids. They had a lot of tables set up with Legos for the kids to play and build with. They also had about 3-5 craft tables set up that Autumn dug into right away! Here is Nathan with his Creeper (Minecraft) and Autumn with a teepee she is building out of scraps of cardboard, string, sticks and tape!

Nat-kite Aut-holding-kite

Both kids made a kite at the craft table, Autumn's had a really, really long string on it!

This is my favorite photo of the entire day. Both kids are smiling and what a fantastic view at the botanical gardens!

After the exhibit, I decided to take the kids over to the maze in the garden. I can remember walking running through this maze when I was a child. Here is Nathan and Autumn in the middle of the maze.

Such a pretty view if you look up!

Here is a photo of the maze, the kids are in the middle.

Nat-at-top Aut-sticking-tongue-out
There is a little tower you can climb up and then you can see everyone in the maze. Here is Nathan at the top in the photo on the left and Autumn at the top in the photo on the right. You can barely see that Autumn is sticking her tongue out at me. That girl!

After the maze, we decided to head home to the gift shop, because we were getting hot. I saw this cute little succulent arrangement on our way out... I have a love for succulents! In the gift shop, Autumn got a bag of rocks and Nathan got an air plant, which should be interesting. Then we headed to Sonic for a cherry limeade for me and slushies for the kids, because we were parched!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

What Wives Wear Link Up #17 - Sequin Tank with Maxi

Welcome to the
What Wives Wear Link Up!
Week 17
Welcome to another week of What Wives Wear! Today I am sharing a monochromatic sequin number with you. Since summer is wrapping up, it has been harder for me to shop from my closet to find fun outfits to share here every week... SO, while doing laundry last week I found this sequin tank top that I hadn't worn ALL summer. It usually fits a little snug, but since I have been doing my half marathon training (and upper body workouts, too!), I fit in it a lot better around the belly area!!  Yay for sticking to my workouts and for eating healthier the last few weeks.


I wore this outfit to a Saturday church service, since it is more on the casual side... a lot of people wear jeans for the Saturday service! And then I wore it out for a dinner date with Brian, since we had a free coupon for a birthday meal for me on The Hill at an Italian restaurant I love! It is amazing how fancy this generic grey tank top looks with the sequins added to it in clear and black stripes. 


With the sequins, I had to think a little about what necklace to select for this outfit. I decided to go with more bling and sparkle and wore the necklace you see above... which, I cannot seem to remember where I purchased it from... there is a similar necklace on BaubleBar HERE, but it isn't exactly the same.


I was surprised when I put this outfit together, because I realized how little silver jewelry I have! I am all about gold jewelry (except for my wedding ring!) now. The silver sand dollar bracelet is from the Animal Kingdom Lodge gift shop... I always love to buy jewelry for myself as a souvenir on a trip! The other silver bracelet is old and the owl ring is from a store on Main Street in St. Charles.


As you can see in this side view photo, the sequins are only in the front, not the back of the tank.


I was going to wear sandals with this outfit, but these silver flats went SO well with the rest of the outfit... so, here they are!


Here is a break down of what I am wearing:
Striped Sequin Tank Top - Old Navy
Grey Maxi Skirt - Old Navy
Silver Flats - Old Navy (Can you see a trend? An ON outfit!)
Necklace - Similar
Bracelets & Ring - Old

God Life Happy Wife

Hosted By:
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What Wives Wear Link Up is a place for wives/moms 
to express their own personal style. 
Link up your favorite outfit post of the week. 
Get inspired while inspiring others!

We will meet and link up every Thursday

Each week the hosts will choose the Top Two looks 

to be featured for the next weeks link up.
Join us each week and we may just pick you!

This week Jennie is keeping it simple with 

a black & white striped top and black textured pants.

This is a classic look but she gives us a touch of fun

with her french bulldog flats.

This week Carrie was sharing her shorts & tees looks.

This particular look had to be part of this weeks Top Two.

Carrie is giving us cute & casual with a tee 

that has such an important meaning. 

Not only does it have great colors and design, but 

the tee represents an organization that 
supports a special little boy with an illness. 

The tee is matched up with khaki shorts and tan sandals.

Carrie makes her look a little fancy with gold dangling earrings.

Jennie@A Pocketful Of Polka Dots
Carrie@A Lovely Little Wardrobe

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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Oh Deer! String Art

I have been trying to finish this craft project for over a month! Sorry I haven't had many crafts lately, but July into August was so busy with vacations, the kids keeping me busy while they were off from school during the summer... and then school started. I am just now coming up for air! I have some really fun fall craft projects that I will be sharing starting in September. I really get excited about crafting, decorating and DIY projects once Fall starts! This project all came about when I saw this scrap piece of wood in the garage. I know that happens to a lot of other crafters, but seriously... I knew I was going to stain it and come up with a nice and dandy string art project with it!


I just recently bought a gold deer head from Hobby Lobby that the husband just hung this last weekend (eeeek!). I had a lot of ideas for string art besides doing a deer head, such as the state of Missouri with a heart over St. Louis or even the Eiffel tower... But, the shape of the wood was perfect for a deer head and a little phrase on the bottom... so, I went with the all too popular 'oh deer' phrase of course!! Gotta love it, right?!


The phrase 'oh deer' fit perfectly on the bottom... I will admit, I was a little worried to string letters, but it turned out just fine! I think it really makes the whole piece!


We had some stain in our garage from when Brian stained our mailbox and from when we were going to stain our wooden bench on our porch (but, never did). However, these stains weren't the color I envisioned for this project... SO, off to Lowes I went, which is almost up there with Target and Hobby Lobby when it comes to my favorite stores list! I went to the paint department and found a pint of transparent stain and selected a color from their chart. I wanted a dark wash, so I went with a darker stain. Seriously, this stain was the most expensive part of this project... $18 for a small can! BUT, I plan to use it again for something else... I hope. :) Then I bought two packages of nails at $1 each, which was really cheap! I purchased larger headed nails for the deer head and thinner headed nails for the 'oh deer' phrase.


First, wipe down the wood with some paper towels and water and let it dry. Then, I set two small baby bowls under the piece of wood, so that I could paint the sides of the wood easily. I only painted one coat of the stain on the wood, because I wanted to wood grain to show through. It was a transparent stain and I could have probably done another coat, but I really liked how it looked after one coat. Then I let it dry for the rest of the day.


I printed out an outline of the deer head on my inkjet printer and used paint safe tape to adhere it to the wood.


Then start hammering your nails along the edge of the outline. This is pretty tedious and my hand got tired a lot. Also, a lot of the nails were really close while I was doing the antlers and it got to be a little tricky. But, ohhh, the end result is SO worth it.


Do the same with the letters, print out a template and hammer the nails over the lines of the letters.


I was wondering how easy the paper would be to pull off over the nails, but it came off really easy. You will now see all of the nails on the wood and you'll notice how confusing the nails look around the antlers of the deer head! You will want to look at a photo of your outline while stringing, so you can remember what you need to string!


I should have taken a photo of this... but first you will tie a knot of the end of the string to one nail and then you'll wrap the string in and out of the nails around the entire outline of the deer head first. After you've outlined it TWICE and outlined any negative spaces (you'll need a small piece of string to do those areas), you can start stringing the entire piece. You will just go from one nail to the other and the string will eventually fill in all of the bare spots. I would wrap the string around the nail head one time before bringing the string across to the next nail. By wrapping it around the nail head, you secure it better then if you just wrap it along one side before going to the next nail.


For the letters, I would tie a knot on a nail and string around each letter for each word, cut and knot and then start over with the next word. I would outline the letters two times for thickness.

The string is not white, it is sort of a cream/light tan color. I thought this went really well with the color of the stained wood.

Here is a side view, you can see that I used a lot of nails for this project!

Now I am trying to decide what my next string art project will be... perhaps some small ornaments for my Halloween tree!

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Monday, August 25, 2014

Warby Parker's Beacon Collection


Today I wanted to share my thoughts about Warby Parker and their Beacon Collection. The Beacon collection is inspired by impromptu, can't-duplicate-them all-nighters, when having no plans brings endless possibilities. They designed their newest line of frames to make a similarly fine companion to late night dates, rooftop sunrise, and everything in between.

Another reason you should buy your next frame from Warby Parker, is because for every pair sold, they distribute a pair to someone in need through their non-profit partners.

Also, if you are looking for something a little different then the Beacon collection, Warby Parker also offers a Home Try-On program. My husband has used this program in the past and he had 5 days to look over 5 frames that he selected. The frames are shipped to you for free and then you can ship back just the ones you didn't decide to keep... or you can ship them all back for free! The Beacon Collection is a limited edition, so it is not included in the Home Try-On program.

My favorite lens from the collection is the the Nancy frame. I put together an outfit that would be perfect for this fall with the Nancy frame in lemon.

Nancy Frame in Lemon   Gap Cable Knit Sweater in Camel   H&M Slim Fit Pants in Burgundy   H&M White Jersey Tee   Michael Kors Billy Studded Fringe Bootie   Charming Charlie Aztec Earrings and Aztec Cuff Bracelet   Stella Dot Aztec Clutch   Stella Dot Rebel Pendant

This outfit shows an oversized cable knit sweater in a neutral color that you would wear over an untucked white jersey tee. The colored skinny jeans in burgundy give this outfit a pop of color. I am in love with fringe boots for the fall, so I had to include MK's natural colored fringe booties. I added some hints of aztec prints with the clutch and jewelry. When you add the Nancy frames in lemon to this outfit, you have a wonderful outfit with colors that match the fall palette.

Below you will see the sunglass frames to the Beacon Collection:

To find out more information about the Beacon collection, you can visit Warby Parker HERE.