Friday Finds: Etsy Art

I don't know how many of you live under a rock and have never heard of Etsy, but I just can't get enough of the place! It's the best source for non-run-of-the-mill jewelry, home accessories, clothes and whatever else you can think of. Lately, I've been scouring the site for art to add to our little collection and recently came across some really cool stuff.

I saw this robot dude and instantly thought of Davin. I don't know why, buy all robots remind me of Davin. I think its because he picks up things so quickly and its so much fun to watch him learn and process new a little robot. And with Mommy & Daddy's love of music, we're hoping he picks that up too!

Rockin out, robot print

The next two came from the same Etsy shop and would really work well in our kitchen. This one in particularly had me laughing out loud, since we just finished a week long stretch of daily pork dinners.

Pork Butcher Diagram of a Pig -8x10 Print (featured in Charcoal) (Buy 3 and get One Free)

Spatula Whisk Spoon (Kitchen Utensil Art) 11x14 Print (Featured in Canary Yellow) Buy 3 Get One Free

This is my favorite find...and I think I just might shell out the cash for it. We'll see!!!

ARKANSAS Digital Illustration Print of Arkansas State with Cities Listed

So, those are my Friday Finds. Hope you guys enjoy your weekend!


UNCOMMON GROUND: Communication

We're blowin the dust off of U.G. and letting it out to play again. Sorry for it's absence, but you know how that goes. So Mr. Marcus and I have been attending a marriage class at our church every Wednesday for the past couple weeks. The info was getting sooo good, that I had to come back and share some of it with you guys.

The class has been on the subject of communication. We've discussed those things that can hinder it and those things that help us do it effectively. Mr. Marcus and I have been communication for over 5 years now, and have yet to become perfectionists at the art, so these particular discussions have become treasures to us and our relationship.

The first and most important point that was brought up was that couples should pray together...CONSTANTLY. When we were apart and living in two different cities, Mr. Marcus and I made it a point to pray together over the phone every night before we went to bed. But since getting married and living together, we've kinda slacked off. Whether it was us not going to bed together at the same time or sheer forgetfulness, we had really fallen of the consistency wagon. We had always known that prayer was a powerful tool to use for any and every situation. However, holding hands and praying together with your spouse/significant other produces a since of security and a bond that can not be easily broken. It not only acknowledges God and His tremendous power, it creates an invitation for Him to come in and be the center of your relationship. Remember the three-strand cord? (Ecclesiastes 4:12) Putting God in the center of your communication is a must and the first step to a healthy and lasting relationship.

Next point: Be sure your honey is listening before you start talking. Don't try to communicate if he/she is pre-occupied with something else. If you know you're man is playing his league playoff game on the Xbox, then that may not be the best time for you to talk about your over-due credit card bill. And guys, if you know that Real Housewives of Atlanta is your girl's favorite show, don't use that as the time to want to talk about her overdue credit card bill! With subjects of this importance, be sure to set aside a time when both parties are available and can be present in the conversation.

Now this one's a biggie: Use "I" statements, not "you" statements when talking out an issue and try to remove the phrases like "ALWAYS", "NEVER", and "I'm the ONLY one...", especially during heated discussions. These things can really drive the person that's on the receiving end right over the edge and make a bad situation worse.

Ok, this next point is one that I, myself, struggle with to this day (but I'm working on it!!!) DO NOT MIND-READ: ASSUMING YOU KNOW WHAT YOUR BOO IS THINKING OR IS ABOUT TO SAY. It's very difficult to argue with Mr. Marcus. It's very rare for the point that I would argue would actually win the fight. So with being "defeated" so many times, I thought I was recognizing a pattern. Then I would try to use that pattern to predict what he would say. This lead to horrible assumptions, breakdowns in communication because I would just stop talking when I realized I "lost", and me being mad before he would even say anything! So take it from me, folks. Don't make an a$$ out of yourself. Turn those assumptions into questions and ASK them. You'll be amazed at how clearly things can begin to appear.

I kind of touched on this a few lines up, but the next point is to AVOID the silent treatment. Effective communication can only happen if both of you are actually communicating. The silent treatment is nothing more than a cop-out. It's actually pretty selfish and kinda puts off the message that you don't care. You're withholding information from your significant other that could possibly lead to enlightening them or bettering the situation. Not to mention that it can create the atmosphere for retaliation. You're trying to give him the silent treatment and he gives it to you right back. Now, nobody's talking! And what does that get you? ......................exactly.

The last couple points I can combine into one: BE NICE! Compliment your significant other on a regular basis; say "I love you" and "I appreciate you" often. Saying and hearing these words are important and saying/hearing the reasons behind them can send one's spirits soaring. Ladies, this is especially for you. Men need those words of affirmation as much as we do. Be a cheerleader for your man. Man can not live on bread alone, but if you provide a little verbal support every now and then, he may be motivated enough to go out and find the 2-piece that goes with it!!! LOL I'm kidding, but seriously...actions don't always mean more than words. The words you speak have the awesome power to either build up or tear down. Choose your words wisely, because you can't take them back (Proverbs 18:21). And if you know you're getting ready to bring up a testy subject/situation, start out with something positive. Its likely that they'll be more open to discuss the matter if you do. And finally, FORGIVE ONE ANOTHER. Things might be said that will hurt, but remember your partner is not your enemy. Don't let unforgiveness grow into something that can't be controlled, and in turn, has control over your relationship.

They didn't lie when they said, "When you know better, you do better." And now that we know and we're doing, it's only right to pass these points along to others.  They've been eye-openers to me and Mr. Marcus and they're helping us with our daily communication. It's my hope and prayer that they are now able to help someone else.


Outfit of the Other Day ; )

Since I can't decide which day to do a weekly (or randomly) outfit of the day, I'll show you guys my outfit from a nice sunny day a while back. Again, I was inspired by my buddy, Kim K. Here she is strolling the streets of NYC.

Now, this isn't one of her greatest looks, but the concept was right on point. I'm loving looks with the color worn on the bottom. It just feels so much more modern. So here's how I turned my inspiration into a new look for me. (sorry for the cheesiness...this was an impromptu photo shoot...Mr. Marcus turned the camera on me while we were snapping pics of Davin).

Davin's not a fan of posing for pics...never camera ready.

But Mommy always is! LOL!


DIY: Spring Organizing

Sorry for the lack of posts last week guys, but I had to travel in to my office...aaaall the way back in Fort Smith. But, before I left, I had the chance to do a little spring organizing. Do you remember our third bedroom...or our junk room, as we like to call it? No? Well, here's a few reminders.

Clothes, shoes, craft projects, blankets, power tools, hair products...juuunk junk junk junk junk!!!! And trust me, these photos don't do this room justice. All of this crap meets you right at the door.

Sooo, I did something about it. I packed up all of our winter gear and extra blankets, donated a lot stuff I haven't, wouldn't, or can't wear, put away the power tools, threw away a lot of crap, mailed my sister some stuff and just pushed a lot of stuff to the back wall. So then it looked like this.

Most of this is the stuff that should, but can't go into the garage (due to my fear of bugs and the elements). I know it still looks like a lot of crap, but trust me, it's soooo much better. And although this side of the room was great, I still had all of my belts, scarves, purses and hats that I had no idea what to do with. There's absolutely no room in our bedroom and I didn't want to just throw them back in a rubber tote...I had to get a little creative.

I realized a long time ago that if I can't see my stuff, I won't wear it. So I knew I wanted to put as much stuff out and on display as possible. And since we didn't have any display shelves on hand, I knew I was going to have to make something. I knew I had a couple pieces of leftover from my bench project, so I figured that was good start. The rest of the supplies (hooks and string) came from our junk drawer in the kitchen.

So, long story, I took to pieces of 1x4, 6 hooks and a couple pieces of string and I got this...

I screwed hooks into the ceiling and both sides of the 1x4's and looped string through to hang them. Pretty simple and straight forward.

Once I got everything up, there was an empty space above the belts that needed to be filled. I, instantly, thought of the all of the handwritten notes that my mother used to write me (and everyone else : ). There is one that always puts a smile on my face. She wrote it to me during one of the best times we had ever had together during my visit home on Mother's Day weekend of 2010. I knew I had to frame it.

And just in case you're wondering, it reads:


Carmeon "Coco", my first born,
I am so proud of you. You are beautiful inside and out. I can see you being transformed right before my eyes as a woman, daughter, sister, mother and vessel. God is pleased and so am I. You must Stay Focused, Be Obedient and Trust God. Keep reading and seeking daily. You are richly blessed and anointed. Smile and tell Him Thank You! This was one of the best Mother's Day ever. (Thank you) The devil meant for bad - but God! The time we spent together was priceless. Seeing you with your son makes me so proud. He will grow up to be a very special, blessed and anointed man of God - no doubt. Keep up the good work. When he gets out of hand call security LOL or tell him rude LOL. Save travels back home.


P.S. Know that I love you dearly and I am always here for you and Davin.

And to get the "security" and "rude" back story, you've got to watch this video.


So that's my little spring organizing related DIY. And I love it!

So what are you guys up to? Any spring cleaning going on? Do you hang your scarves/belts in their own places or they stashed away in a drawer? Let me know?