When I am buried under never ending piles of laundry or sweeping crumbs off the floor for the 15th time in a day it can be easy to forget how being a mom is one of the greatest adventures of my life. I have hard, yuck days at home with the kids just like everyone else. I have days when I am counting the hours until bedtime and days I would rather cry than intervene in one more sword fight. Those are days and moments I try to get through and move on. Sometimes I snatch a photo to remind myelf of those days, but usually I don’t. The mind is a battlefield and I don’t want to waste time and energy dwelling on the yuck in life….so you don’t see much of that on this blog.

Thankfully, the yuck is far outweighed by the simple goodness of being a mom. Not much compares. I love that I get a front row seat to watch as 4 babies grow into the people that God created them to be. It is amazing when you really think about it. Talk about creativity at the ultimate level. My favorite times are usually found in the mundane. The thing about the mundane is if you are too busy with everything else in life you miss out on it.

For me being too busy for the mundane can mean missing out on the pride my son has for his ability to contort his body. Simple. Memorable.

Or how decked out in her girly Baby Gap dress my daughter can hold her own in a wrestling match with her big brother.

It is mundane – 4 legs on a trampoline….but it is a reflection of God’s creativity in my life…a tough little girl majorly loved by 3 big brothers.

When I am too busy I can easily notice the fighting among my kids…and not notice developing friendships.

Missing out on the mundane can mean overlooking how rough it is for a boy to actually lose his tooth at school….and I mean LOSE as in it is somewhere on the playground as a result of wrestling too hard with his dad & friends during recess. (on a side note can I say I have never been so happy one of my kids lost something!)

The mundane, day-to-day life….just killing time in the backyard. There is a song out now with the lyrics, “she grew up good, she grew up slow.” I want my kids to grow up good and grow up slow (yes it is a country song…of course!). Life is too fast paced, I want childhood to be slow. I want to celebrate the mundane and recognize that most of life is made up in the mundane.

I love being a mom. I love watching my kids interact and forge deep bonds with eachother. Sometimes those bonds are forged doing things together that I may or may not like…if it isn’t a moral issue then at times I look away. Some of my greatest memories from childhood had major flesh wounds and broken bones as a result, but the risk and pride of accomplishment was worth every doctor visit. (my parents may disagree with that). Adventure in the mundane.

I want to soak in the mundane because I am not guaranteed tomorrow with any of them. They are not guaranteed tomorrow with me.

I want to be in the little moments with my kids maybe even more than I want to be in the big moments.

When I slow down and walk along side them in the mundane I recognize things I might not otherwise. Things like how my 2 year old puts stickers on his legs upside down to the world, but right side up from his perspective.Β  Celebrating the day to day can often seem upside down for our culture, but it seems right side up to me.

back to top share on facebook tweet this post pin site image email a friend
  • Jo - Thanks for saying that. Its the hardes but the best job in the whole wide world and I wouldn’t do anything else!

  • andy - love this post
    i needed to hear this early this morning as i am starting a new day and hopeing that it is better than yesterday and if not then i will take it in stride and go :)

  • Alba - how easy is to forget being a mum under piles of laundry? or cleaning bathrooms? thanks for remind me I am still a mum. thanks for the blog, for your everyday posts,…

  • Beth - i had an evening like this with my 4 littles yesterday. bliss.

  • Misty - THANK YOU!

    Thought I would share a quote that inspires and challenges me:

    β€œHow we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour, and that one, is what we are doing. A schedule defends from chaos and whim. It is the net for catching days.”

    – Annie Dillard in The Writing Life

    Here is to “catching the days” of our children’s lives instead of letting them pass by in a sea of monotony and busyness…..

  • Jaime Vines - beautiful post and a nice reminder just to slow down and enjoy the mundane.

  • Terri Lynne Barrington - Thank you Mrs. Ashley Ann. It’s nice to step back from the hustle and bustle and read such a touching and personal post. Makes me take a deep breath, and call my kids for no reason other than to simply say “I love you by the way.” You are an incredible mother and an inspiting web friend.

  • Christine - well said….great post :)

  • Yanet - I love this post. I did a similar post once that I bookmarked and go back to on my yuck days. It’s probably one of my favorites.

    Btw, love the two teethers on Firecracker!

  • laura - beautiful post. thanks for the reminder…

  • Making Stuff for Beauty’s Sake | Gina G. Smith - […] a family. You are shaping lives, even in the midst of what is often seemingly mundane. (Check out Ashley’s gorgeous post about this very […]

  • gina - Beautiful. I’m linking today.

  • Jess - Wow. Beautifully written. Thank you for that reminder!

  • anne c - thank you..this made me cry…it is exactly how I feel but I am just not as good as you on expressing my feelings. you always spark something in me. enjoy THIS day, for it is a blessing from God!

  • A. Jarrett - Thank you, thank you, thank you for this post!

    Just what I needed to be reminded of today.

    *Love* your space here!

  • Robyn Lee - What an awesome post! When I have kids, I hope I’m a cool mom like you. :) And I hope I don’t forget to remember the everyday things.

  • Shannon - Lovely!

  • Kerri - Like American Honey…
    Oh so sweet.

  • Bailey Hanrhan - After recently suffering the loss of a young life in my family, it is so important to remember what you said. Nothing is guarenteed and each day needs to be appreciated. I want to hold on to that thought forever because even though it was so hard to say goodbye, it was an amazing eye-opener for my family and I. We need to stop getting lost in our everyday lives and be aware of life’s simple pleasures. We need to value eachother and tell people how we feel regularly : )

  • Jaymee - Thank you.. I needed that!!

  • Stephanie - First, I just want to say I love your blog. It’s inspirational and helps remind me to adore the beautiful little things in life. Your children and adorable. When I read your posts, it’s like i’m reading about my boys. Thanks for such a refreshing blog to read!

  • Sarah - Well said and something I needed right now!

  • colleen - amen sistah! Just had the thought, wonder if Jesus ever thought life was mundane… I think He must have had the ability to see all of life as infused with deliberate, creative, God imprinted purpose. Certainly, that view would keep us from being bored! Today I am asking Him to open my eyes to see my life, my kids and my husband just that way. I think it will be a fun day.

  • jo - thank you. this was a beautiful way to start the day.

  • Jenna - Excellent, excellent post! Thank you for the poignant reminder to ENJOY the little moments with my sweet (crazy, rambunctious) children everyday.

  • ashlee - beautifully written and so so true. this post is perfect for me today. thank you:)

  • Lindsay - Wow…I love this post! I don’t have kids yet, but your post really applies to everyone…kids or not. I’ve been feeling lately like I’m wasting away my life because I go to work, go home, sit on my butt and watch tv, go to bed and start all over the next day. I need to appreciate LIFE! Thank you for this reminder. Sad I needed to be reminded! And your kids are ABSOLUTELY to die for cute. Holy cow.

  • Becca - LOVE this post!!!!!

  • Kimberlee J. - I have heard that Lady A. song many times and have never gleaned the lesson of those few words before. Thank you for this post…it went well with my Starbucks this morning.

  • Lori K - Well, I am crying big tears. Between moving boxes, laundry, fixing supper and my day to day busy errands…I truly believe we are kindred spirits. Just last night, instead of packing more…I held baby girl and brother and just sang silly songs to them. I thought, packing smacking…i’m doing this. Maybe, it’s because I had gone through baby girls’ old clothes from when she was born and they were itty bitty. They grow up so fast and I get to watch and revel in the glory of it all. If my life is mundane…then I must like it. I love my life. Thanks God for the daily mundane of it all. Thank you that I am a mother…

  • Jen - Thanks so much for the reminder! We all could use it once in a while…

  • Jane - I couldn’t agree more. The mundane stuff is what forms the best memories.

  • Nicole - it’s so hard for me to slow down, i always have to make a pointed effort. best post ever. thank you!

  • Lisa Johnson - I love everything about this post

  • Kirsten - love. this. post. Thanks for sharing.

  • Bron @ Baby Space - THAT is the BEST quote of the day – maybe of the YEAR. Maybe of my LIFE. Seriously – I love it. And your pics are gorgeous as always :)

  • emily - this is beautiful.
    and inspiring.
    thank you.
    seriously. thank you.

  • rachel denbow - Sometimes I feel like I need permission to slow down and embrace this more fully than I do. It’s like a call to the best version of something.

  • giozi - You right. I feel the same. This days was feeling a little bad.
    See your pictures today it was a gift to me. You make me smile, as always. Thankkkkkkkkkkkkkks.

  • Sarah W. - Another wonderful post, and an excellent reminder to take it all in, ever bit of it.
    Love the quote &
    I love country music.

  • Lanny Stanard - Have I ever told you… You have the cutest kids ever :)

  • Elle - If you don’t participate in The Pioneer Woman’s photo contests you TOTALLY should! You take some of the greatest pictures. I’ve got to get in on a Snap Shots class sometime.

  • Karla (LaPine) Swalve - This is why I love this blog-I’m so glad I was introduced to it. You are just REAL in a way that is refreshing. You do so many things well, I think you are supermom :) but its encouraging to think that you have the mundane just like everyone else-you’ve just chosen to be joyful even in the yuck and that makes all the difference :) I needed to be introduced to this blog at this time in my life-3 months until our first baby and I’m learning so much from you!

  • CharlaL - Love this….Thank you!

  • amber - I love this.

  • Jenna - Beautifully said.

  • tash - Yes if you just stop for a moment and step back and watch them play you see some wonderful things are being achieved and it ain’t such a boring day. Thanks for always being inspirational- Tash

  • shawna - thank you. thank you. thank you. I am about to take the same leap you did, and stop booking sessions/fill my blog with creativity & just shots of my babe. you are very inspirational. a reminder that it is ok. nothing is more important than the babes.

  • Jill R - Love. Add this to my list of favorite posts.

  • Fiona - Beautiful– actually brought a tear to my eye.

  • jenny - great post and much needed reminder! thank you! :)

  • Laura - Love this post! A great little reality check.

  • Heather - it’s my happy place, too. so much real goodness comes out in the mundane and normal parts of life. i feel like it’s a gift to see that and wish others could to.

  • Brittaney - Oh my, how this post makes me want to be a mommy!

  • SeaminglySarah - Amen! Thank you for the reminder.

  • Mallory - I loved this post, Ashley! I’m not a mom yet, but I will definintely remember this once I do have kids. I think so many people try to “grow up” their kids so fast nowadays, and it really is a shame. Childhood is such a gift.

  • cally - oh thankyou.

  • Kacy - Thank you for this post, and for the one a while back about why you’re not going back into business any time soon. Both are great for me to read, a mom of 3 with a photography business that has been on “extended” maternity leave for about 18 months.

  • Stoich91 - oh me gorsh! First blog post I’ve read in a long time that almost brought me to tears. For serious. How do you even take these fantastic pictures and keep their clothes so clean (and for serious, how are they always dressed so freakn’ cute?!) and why is their hair always perfect and by the way: How are they all so totally adorable, all the time, even when they’re not smiling? How do you break up fights and then turn around to snap quality pix? Also, questions like:

    What kind of angle do you have to be at to tote a $1000+ SLR on a trampoline with a young child upsidedown to capture that angle of a photo shot? Eh? Any pointers? jk

    I love, love love it!


  • Mary - Best post you’ve ever done!!! Thank you. I’m envious that my job took me away from many of those mundane moments and days.

  • Katie Daniel - I love your blog and your pictures are amazing! I am hosting a photo contest on my blog, http://www.ps-travelblog.com, and you should definitely enter!

  • lifeologia - Beauty in the mundane – Awesome.
    It helps if you’re a great photographer to capture these little moments.

    I am also thinking of a quote…by John Lennon

    “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”

  • Candace - Thanks! My three year old princess is becoming my 14 year old rebel. I needed this today to appreciate her in all her glory. =)

  • Lori - thank you for this post – love it. and your pictures – i love how you capture the everyday life so well!

  • Jill - LOVED this post Ashley! Thanks for reminding me that I need to slow down and enjoy my kids!

  • Rachael Schepemaker - your family is goreous! Can you tell me what type of lens you are using to capture these beautiful shots?

  • Kristin Eldridge - Thanks for the encouragment!

  • Mariah - Love this, Ashley. Mommyness. Bliss. Sometimes. Thanks for the reminder to find the beauty in the not-so-blissful- sometimes. Nice to know I’m not alone in the world!

  • Leanne - I Love that!! great post!

  • Tessa - Amen! I yearned so badly for the mundane when I was separated from my husband for almost 4 years. He was struggling with a lot of stuff, and a day doesn’t go by that I don’t stop and appreciate God giving him back to me. During that time, I yearned to fold his laundry! So, when I am folding laundry, I am reminded to appreciate all that I have been given. I am so thankful for my incredible SIMPLE life and the perspective that God has given me through my trials.

  • Kellie Ann - I am so touched (to tears) by the sincerity of your post. I can’t wait to be a mom! Thank you for sharing your family with us.

  • Brianne Pitts - Thank you for a great reminder. I have two little bitties and sometimes I get wrapped up in the big stuff and don’t enjoy the little things. They really do matter.

  • Colleen - Great post! You’ve made me smile. :)

  • Kingsley Moore - I have NEVER commented on a blog before. I was moved(almost to tears) with your honest and touching thoughts. I had to say “Thank you,” for sharing, for inspiring me with many a photo, word, & project. God Bless.

  • Kim@Living with Little People - When I feel myself getting frustrated with all the little delays a toddler brings I often think of you and your posts. They help me be a better, more patient Mum. Thank you.

  • Caroline - thank you for this reminder!! motherhood is such a blessing!

  • Ryan - I really loved this post, Ashley! This is why I fell in love with your blog and why I come back daily. :)

  • June P - its hard to find something interesting about the everyday, but everyting to be thankful for. i struggle to see the bright side of laundry and cleaning up and having to raise my voice for my kids to hear, but i know too that when i don’t have to do these anymore, it means my kids have grown up. “grow good, and grow slow”. yes, that’s the way. the laundry will be there tomorrow.

  • Jen - Oh Ashley. (I hope it’s OK we’re on a first name basis.) The whole world (or at least all of Oklahoma) knows you are a gifted photographer. But I want you to know you are just as talented with words.

    And we are all so blessed that you choose to share both those gifts (and many many more) with the world through this blog, as a means of glorifying our God.

    Thanks for reminding us to enjoy the simple things. And to thank God for them, as well.

  • lisa - LOVE LOVE LOVE this post!! Could not agree more I love watching my children grow and spending time with them when they are so young, I wouldn’t trade it for anything!

  • Kristi - That is so true abou the you are not guaranteed tomorrow with any of them! tim came home tonight and told me that one of his employees while we lived in Memphis was on a tractor and his one year old little boy was behind the tractor (and he obviously didn’t know it) and just ran right over him. He passed away either last night or this morning! So, hug and kiss your babies every day and be thankful God chose you to be a Mom! If you do read this, please pray for this family! The hurt this Dad/family is going through just isn’t imaginable! Thanks guys!

  • Jill - What you have put into words is so true. What a great post. This is my first visit to your blog and it certainly was inspirational. I’m often reminded that as a mother the days are long, but the years are short.
    We all need to step back and enjoy the mundane a bit more.
    Thank you for the reminder.

  • jessica - Awesomeness – I love this perspective. Made me think of this amazing viewpoint: http://www.incourage.me/2010/05/the-treasure-of-thrown-away-food.html

  • kelly - Wow. Beautiful everything. So glad I found your site! And thanks for the much needed perspective.

  • Stephanie - Love this. Thank you for sharing!

  • Nicole - I love this post. Beautifully said!

  • Katie - This was such an awesome post.

    My boys do the same thing with their stickers.

    p.s. Have you seen this magazine? (ad-free, awesome design, celebrates the “mundane” moments that make life beautiful.)


  • Rachel - what a beautiful and happy post!! being a stay-at-home mom of three, these words will definitly creep in my head and give me a new perspective on those “moments”. thanks!

  • Abby - thank you ….. our mundane is pretty wonderful as well :) Your photos are stunning as always :)

  • Maike - absolutely true!

  • Mara - Wonderful post. Great reminder about what is important – the extraordinary of an ordinary day :)

  • Kristen - Beautiful post.

  • Kate @ Songs Kate Sang - Oh Ashley, I love it. You are so right. We just need some rest and encouragement to keep going.

    I am praying for you today. Praying for a little rest and a sweet soul to encourage you.

  • Stephanie - Thank you…much needed in this mondane day.

  • EmRuss - Love this post. I’ve been blogstalking you for a while because I love your pictures, love your crafty cute stuff, and love the stuff you post. This post was great and I decided I finally needed to comment!! Thanks for a great reminder!!

  • Jessica P - Your photography really captures the beauty of everyday life perfectly. You are so talented.

  • Joy - Ashley
    Thanks so much for this post! I am in CA visiting my family and have been frustrated at all, all of the stuff they are getting into that is not age appropriate of course to be getting into. This was encouraging to relax and enjoy my 1 and 2 year old where they are even at grammas knickknacky filled house :)
    thanks! joy

  • Tami - What a beautiful post. Thanks for the reminder to enjoy each moment. The photography you took is amazing.

  • Philly - Beautiful. I’m only 22, and when I do become a mother, I want to love them and enjoy them just the way you do. Thank you for the inspiration.

  • Chrissy - thanks for the reminder! so true… love it!

  • tamara - Thank you for this.
    So simple and perfect

  • Patricia Teo - I love love love LOVE this post!

  • Sherly - What a beautiful, beautiful post!!! Thank u so much for the encouragement.. =) Mommyhood rocks!

  • pamela - this is so beautiful. it makes me a little sad though, because i feel so often i am missing those ‘mundane’ things and wish so badly that i could be home with my little girl witnessing them. when i get off work i can’t wait to see her and try to soak it all in while i can! thankfully, i’m a teacher, so i get to spend summers off with her. if i didn’t have that i don’t know what i’d do!

    you are a great mom!

  • Interior Dream » Blog Archive » In The Mundane - […] This post made me mindful of looking for those special mundane moments. Like how Chloe instinctually stiffened her body like a seasoned circus performer when her dad thrust her into the air… […]

  • Alicia Meyers - This was a truly lovely post! I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and reflecting on the thoughts you shared. Thanks!

  • Interior Dream » Blog Archive » GREAT READS: A Year-End Blog Tour Part IV - […] “Being a mom in the mundane” because though I love to dabble in so many different things most of my days are seemingly mundane, but I find that those are the moments I would never want to miss.http://ashleyannphotography.com/blog/2010/09/09/on-being-mom-in-the-mundane/ ***** Find more Great Reads on Part I, Part II and Part III […]

  • Paige - Thanks so much for your candidness. I have recently been getting very wrapped up in other’s blogs where everything in life seems like a party planner did it all. I find myself trying to live up to that and fail fail fail. Attempting to get simple and try figuring out what our family’s identity is, not trying to fit into another’s mold. I love the day to day in your blog and the simple things your kids find amazing. Not everything can be planned and perfect all the time. A lesson I am learning. Your blog is a refreshing reminder that love and time outweigh perfectly detailed plans anytime!

  • 31 days of finding meaning in the mundane {day 21} more meaningful links | More Than Mundane - […] Ashley Ann at Under the Sycamore on being mom in the mundane: “I want to celebrate the mundane and recognize that most of life is made up in the […]

The night before I went I actually had dreams about what might be in store for me. My sweet friend (who will remain nameless for her own protection from locals that will want to hound her to take them along sometime) invited me to meet her friend Skeeter and rummage through his wonderful goodness. It was all I hoped for. Be still my heart….the sight of all this junk makes it skip a beat.

This is what I returned home with. I used great restraint limiting myself to this….and that fact that there really isn’t much room in my house for more stuff helped.

The drawer filing cabinet begged me to take it home, clean it and fill it with crafty stuff. Not only did I score a cool cabinet, but inside was old newspaper ads and craft supplies from the previous owner…a flower shop. How about $599.95 for a microwave?

I’ve finished cleaning it…with steel wool. Next up is some light sanding and then some glossy white paint.

I also got a lab beaker set. 50+ year old medical tape is nearly impossible to remove.

While I work on giving junk new life would someone like to come teach my just-turned-1-year-old daughter how NOT to climb on everything?

In other news, I did a little diy tutorial for kids over at 1825 today…an alternative to giving out candy in October. You can check it out here.

back to top share on facebook tweet this post pin site image email a friend
  • Shannon - What great finds! I can’t wait to see the finished product. I am so proud that you buy something and immediately start working on it, my to-do things always live in my garage for a few months until I work up the courage to dig in!

  • Danielle - I have to say, I am extremely jealous of your beaker set. I envy and covet and every other bad sin those so much! Gorgeous! :)

  • Debbie - Have you seen the TV Show, on the History Channel, called American Pickers? These two guys from the midwest travel the country side picking thru rummage. My dream job, one man’s trash is antoher man’s treasure! Check it out, you’d love the show!

  • Christy - Awesome finds! Can’t wait to see the cabinet makeover.
    That place reminds me of an episode of American Pickers

  • karen davis - Loving all of your great finds, especially the lab beaker set!

  • Jamie - I love “junk!” Can’t wait to see the after cabinet. I agree with those above, very American Pickers!

  • Deborah - What great finds! I’d love to see the finished product of your filing cabinet. What an incredible piece to have for your crafty stuff. Oh…to be that organized. So happy for you and your “junk” / awesome treasures. :)

  • Emily - I couldn’t be any more jealous! “Junk” is the best! Making “junk” beautiful is even better!

  • Nicole - Do you pay for things at rummage sales??? I’ve always wanted to go to the one by my house but don’t quite understand how it works!

    And do you stain your swingset??? We have the same one and it is SO faded! Seeing how pretty yours looks makes me want to get out there and fix our back up!

    Love your blog!

  • Lori K - Wow. I love the beaker set with the flowers…so pretty!!!! And you know I love the cabinet…you have to know that! smile. can’t wait to see the finished product. I’m sure it’s gorgeous.

  • Trinity - You crack me up Ashley! Seriously, when I look at the junk you find….looks like junk until I see your finished projects. I’m amazed every time! It just amazes me that you (1) see junk and get a vision, and then (2) carry out that vision and (3) carry it out so quickly! Way to go! I’m really glad that junk makes you happy.

  • jenny - You have the most awesome places to find treasures! I wish we had more places like that where I live. I love finding others people’s junk and giving it new life!
    Great finds- especially the awesome filing cabinet!

  • Shannon @ What's Up Whimsy - That filing cabinet is amazing!!! I want one just like it!!

  • ASH - jealous of your finds! the lab beaker set in its new form is wonderful! :) I can’t wait to see what you did to the filing cabinet.

  • ashlee - everything you found is seriously fantastic…what a score:)

  • Jill E - ah so fun! old junk is so fun and exciting. firecracker is to cute. love her little gray jumper perfect for climbing on everything.

  • Kelly - Before I even read a single word that first picture had my heart pitter pattering. What fun! Good finds too!

  • Jeannette - I’m always jealous how you can turn junk in to amazing stuff and do it so quickly! I’m at least buying junk now, but the transformation into something amazing takes a lot more time for me!!

  • ashley jensen - LOOOVE the beaker set! And big score on the stuff inside the drawers! I love it when that happens!

  • april's craft nest - oh wow! you found some great ‘er junk! for real! i am excited to see how the white filing cabinet turns out :) i bet wonderful!

  • Elizabeth - I’m drooling over that file cabinet. What fun!

  • lifeologia - Only you can turn junk into treasures πŸ˜‰ Well done again.
    Only if my husband was this easy going πŸ˜‰

    By the way, I would like to invite you to a SUMMERIZING event I’m hosting.
    Take a look, it would be great if you took part in it πŸ˜‰ I linked to your blog – you’ll like that ;D

  • rachelzana - You are so amazing! I can’t believe how you are able to make things beautiful! I love, love LOVE that lab beaker set with flowers in it! I’d NEVER think of it and even if I did, I’d never be able to pull it off!

  • Kate @ Songs Kate Sang - Oh my goodness! That junk is amazing! Go Ashley!

  • gina - score!! super job deuglifying everything… I love what you have done!!

  • Kelly W - Do you know what happened to Design Aglow? I tried to go to their website today to see where you got some of your layouts but the site is down. Do you have any other suggestions for photo blog layout designs?

  • Aunt Sandy - I love the cabinet…….I want it!!!! Great finds.

  • julianna richman - Oh that cabinet. I worked for a woman who had one like that but wood and I have been looking for something similar ever since…perfect size for holding crafting items…Also what a darling idea with play dough. I will be using that for sure! And if anyone posts a good idea about the climbing baby let me know. My little guy will have a broken bone by the time he is two. He climbs on everything!!!

  • Heather - be still my junking heart! that place looks like disneyland, atleast to me. :) love your finds and can’t wait to see pics of the soon to be even more fabulous cabinet.

  • tasha roe - i can only dream!! that place is heavenly.

  • amber - Do you watch American Pickers???

  • Mary - my jaw hit the floor. AH-MAZ-ING.. can I just you know, live with you?!!

  • Leanne - I LOVE what you did with the lab beaker set! so cute. My parents still have that same model Radarange Amana microwave! I will have to ask them how much they paid for theirs.

  • Jolie - so thrilled for your amazing scores! (trying really hard not to be uber jealous. Failing! lol)
    As for the climbing…i wish I had advice…my 2 haven’t stopped yet!

  • Shannon{photos by shannon} - I love it all! I just got one of those milk crates and LOVE that filing cabinet! I can’t wait to see the finished product!

  • Desiree - Wow! How do you see the potential like that?? I LOVE the beaker vases!!!!

  • carolina - Please tell me how you fix your drawer filing cabinet!!!!

    I inherited a very very similar one, but in grey from Steel Master New York.

    I love it and tried to paint it and it was kind of a disaster. I sanded it first, then used spray primer and spray glossy paint.
    The paint is very noticeable uneven after 4 cans of Spray Paint



  • Jill - The lab beaker set…amazing! I found one a while ago, but sold it…wish I hadn’t! :)

  • Caroline - That beaker set is crazy awesome!

    Really looking forward to seeing how the craft cabinet comes along!

  • Manon - oh i am so jealous. I can’t find a place like this near to me :(

  • Rebecca - Made the alternative to candy yesterday for a quick birthday present. Very easy and very fun. Great idea.

  • Becka @Studio222 - I need one of these places in Orlando! LOVE LOVE LOVE it. I can’t wait to see the file cabinet transformed because I really want one but I wouldn’t know how to give it a proper makeover. Will you show some of the process? Pretty please? :)

  • Kaylene - Yes!! I am not the only one with a climb all Girl. Window seals, her brothers stair to his bed, the trunk, the dishwasher,& everything. So glad to know it’s not just my gal.

  • susie whyte - you’re lucky i didn’t pass out….i stopped breathing when i saw the cabinet. as soon as i saw that cabinet(and began breathing again after making such a loud gasp that the kids stopped playing and asked what was wrong), i quickly saw myself pushing everyone to the side with hulk-like force, including my husband(by accident, of course), in attempts to beat everyone else to it. :)
    there WILL be a diy on painting that, btw. :) i have an old mini card catalog(only w 2 drawers) that i picked up from the salvation army in meg’s town for 75 cents. it needs paint, but i don’t know what to use so it won’t scrape off when i pull the drawers out. thanks in advance. haha.

  • Kelly - You made *excellent* choices! Kelly

  • Jen - Oh my goodness. Trying really hard not to turn green right now.

    Seriously though, congrats. Those are some pretty great finds you found! Thanks for inspiring a trip to the junkyard.

  • meg duerksen - awesome!
    i just painted a file cabinet this week!
    glossy red.
    for my boys.
    but yet…they don’t appreciate it like i wish they would.

  • miss r - I love the filing cabinet. Great find!

  • Michelle - I love it that you have dreams about stuff like this! I have dreams about garage sales before heading out the next morning! Glad to know there’s others like me, haha!

  • Kristen Duke Photography - very clever, using the beakers…

Pretty sure that is the first and last time I will do a giveaway and not use the random number generator! There were so many great comments and a surplus of ideas for me to try on our trip, it was too hard to just pick 5. You’ll be seeing pictures of some of your comments in action. Thank you. I hope you all enjoy the Match-a-Roo Zoo app!

I am on a search to find an individual, organization, group that creates something using craft paint that benefits others. For instance, there are tons of great ways to use fabric for others (pillowcase dresses for orphans, stuffed animals, etc.)….but paint….who uses paint to create something that benefits others? If you do or you know someone that does, please leave a comment on this post. I might just be able to connect you and your group to quite the supply of craft paint!

back to top share on facebook tweet this post pin site image email a friend
  • Kristin - Thanks so much for the free app! My daughter will love it.

  • Olivia Stewart - I am a first grade teacher at a Visual & Performing Arts School trying to inspire my students to create and explore through a variety of mediums. Unfortunately, due to lack of funding, I must come up with all of my own supplies which can get expensive. Thankfully this year I found watercolor paints on sale so I have those but I would love another kind of paint for the students to use. I don’t have my own kids but I have 21 during the school year! If you can’t find another organization to share these with I know that the students in my classroom and school would love to use them, and the teachers would appreciate the shared resources!

  • Leah - Totally awesome! We could use that paint! I help run a homework club on Wednesday nights in a bad neighborhood in Everett, Washington. The name of the ministry is Casino Road Ministries. We have homework clubs and bible clubs, but as I said I help run the homework club on Wed. It’s totally fee of charge for kids…they show up and we feed them dinner and help them with homework. However, before all that I do a craft with them. They LOVE to paint! And with up to 60 kids in a night we can go through some paint πŸ˜‰ I’ve attached links to my blog so you can see us in action!





  • Nicole Ballard - I am starting a ministry in a small, rural, poverty stricken town in Mississippi. I will be teaching art free of charge to the local elementary children, and I am just now beginning to set up my studio. I would love ANY donations or contacts to help get this ministry started.

    Thanks so much!
    God bless you and your beautiful family!

  • Amber - My husband is currently painting a giant mural on every wall of our church nursery, so that it will end up looking like the inside of Noah’s ark. Complete with some three dimensional elements. But hopefully you can get your paints to the teacher in the above comment. Thankfully quite a few of the ladies in our church have donated from their own craft paint supply.

  • Morgan - I work for “The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp”. A camp started by Paul Newman for children aged 7-15 who have chronic and terminal illnesses. The camp is in Ashford, CT and serves over 1000 kids every summer, as well as hundreds of families in the spring and fall for family weekends, and all year long our Hospital Outreach Specialists take camp into hospitals all over New England. From the Arts and Crafts building to Woodshop, into the 15 Cabins and in the Hospital paint is used and used good! http://www.holeinthewallgang.org

    Thank you! I always find much inspiration from your blog!

  • Kate - Mark Making- a nonprofit in Chattanooga, TN