Arts and Crafts and Fartsy Stuff

Our Stay, Play and Eat Weekend at Morey's Piers

#moreyspierscollageMy family and I were very honored to have been invited, as special guests of  Morey's Piers, to spend the weekend in Wildwood, NJ and meet the famous Morey brothers, in person.  

Okay, so I was THRILLED!!!  

I got to revisit some of my favorite childhood memories of summertime(s) past:  when my twin brother and I would spend our days playing on the beach, as my parents sunned themselves while listening to my dad's favorite doo-wop radio station (WCBS FM 101.1), and then follow the parade of flip flops, begging our parents for "Please, just one more quarter?!?" to play any one of the dozens of carnival games (it was a long time ago, shuddup!) along the 2 miles of boardwalk, at night.

Okay, great, but what really made this family getaway even MORE fabulous:

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© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

Holidazed by the Chalkboard Project: I blame Pinterest AND @TheNextMartha

In this house (full as it is)  DIY projects are gauged by three very important factors:

1.  My husband's analytical mind:  I'd mention something about this or that getting done and then he would agree with me, using graphs and/or spread sheets and then submitting a final paper in nothing less than 1,000 words.

2.  My patience level:  I have none.  That is to say, with stuff that doesn't work right, after the 17th time and my aversion to reading directions doesn't help any...either.

3.  Calculating the time it takes to get the job done:  before my husband gets home.

Needless to say, we're a little behind on our DIY projects (not for the lack of wanting, either)  and, trust me when I tell you, ability has absolutely NOTHING to do with our ever-growing to do list...either.

Last year...I re-did our bathroom...during Thanksgiving week.

Okay, I just thought of a 4th import DIY factor:  if it is a holiday week, or not.

This week, I walked by the garage door and noticed the wallpaper was ripped (DAMMIT!) and who wallpapers a garage door, anyways?!?

[raises hand]

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© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

Life Balance, Take 17

Holly's "Young Girl" at Art Show

Yesterday, we attended an art show, held at a local bank, supporting art in schools, featuring two of Holly's pieces. 

You can't really tell from my cell phone, however the majority of this pen and ink drawing is stippled, with tiny little dots. 

I remember, because I can still hear the, ", dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot..." of her tapping the pen well into the night.

Holly's "Life Balance" at Art Show

The same with this one,", dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot..." which explains the permanent dent in the poor girl's right index finger.

This piece, however, is still her favorite, she says, because it's the first, of many she's created (dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot, dot) taking inspiration from her own life, rather than that of another artist.

It's her vision...of herself...and, well, my inner-17-year-old totally relates to the juggling act going on in her head.

I mean, I am her mother.

As her mother?

To be honest, it made me a little sad to think, man, that still seems like A LOT of pressure, doesn't it?

Even more sadly, I started to over-analyze stuff, in my own head, like:

  • Why is she putting bills above love?
  • She's only 17.
  • Perhaps she meant budget?
  • Great, now she won't want kids.
  • Can I blame her?
  • No, I'm her mother.
  • Should a 17 year old be thinking of this sort of stuff?
  • I never did.
  • Did I?
  • Apparently not, see first bullet.
  • Why aren't there any more foot holds?

I did ask her about the bills thing, considering that she may (or, may not) have read my last post.

That's when....

Warning: you're about to enter a proud mom-type blogging moment and, if this sort of stuff makes you itch, I don't blame you.  However, considering that I am her mother, stuff like this just seems all the more amazing, you know, so indulge me this one time, okay?

....she quickly pointed out that the closest thing to her heart is family.

"Read from the bottom up, not the top."

TAKEAWAY:  Seems we're ALL well passed refrigerator art and graduating into deeper, smarter waters, now.

[second glance]

GAH...quick, someone throw me a dingy, PLEASE!

© 2003 - 2011 This Full House

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.



If you were to ask me to sum up this entire winter, using just one color, I would paint you a less than prettiful picture and describe the feeling as being similar to the consistency of pea soup.


Seems like we've had a sick kid in the house, every weekend, since Christmas break and maybe because, you know...we have...had a sick the house...since Christmas break.

This week, it was my youngest's turn (she's 9) which, considering she is the youngest (i.e. been there, done that, easily entertained) a case of strep throat doesn't sound like such a big deal, really.

Unless, she is the kid who NEVER gets sick.

Aaaand, then, she'll spike fevers (always at night) and nearly drown in her own mucus (ditto) thick enough to plaster the walls, twice, to the extent where I am actually afraid of leaving her alone, or even bother with getting dressed.

"I'm bored!"

"Why don't you paint something?"

"But, I can't find a paint brush."

Then, finally, a glimpse of normality and, well, although our lives are not always perfect (okay, more like never) and I won't be voted the bestest, most craftiest mom, anytime soon (if, ever) I can at least try and focus on the beauty of simple, little things, again, or today, anyways.

Like, being thankful that I did NOT throw away that old glass vase...afterall.

Or, this one.  Even if we still can't find a dagnab paint brush, to save my gosh-darned life...dagnabit!

Gee, I wonder what Martha Stewart would do?

© 2003 - 2011 This Full House

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

#Reverb10: Make

Reverb 10 is an online initiative created by Gwen Bell to reflect on 2010, consider, you know, what's next and, through daily writing prompts, help folks (like me) share their story. 

Since I am ALL about sharing (shuddup Garth, not your real name!) and my friend Shannon is doing it (although, the non-conformist in me can't promise to, you know, write daily) I've decided to give it a whirl.

Today's prompt:  Make -- what was the last thing you made? What materials did you use? Is there something you want to make, but you need to clear some time for it?

Reindeer ornament complete

My youngest daughter (she's 9) and I recycled some old stuff to make this cute reindeer ornament for a Clever Girls Collective craft project last month!

We did A LOT of crafts when my kids were younger -- give a kid a piece of paper, a crayon and a couple of glue sticks, well, you ARE the Queen (or King) of Distraction -- especially, around the holidays.

As for things I want to make?

Well, we don't seem to have time to craft together as we used to (could be a bad, or good thing, depending on how you look at it) however, you are NEVER too old for paper chains and snowflakes, right?

Then, there are those pesky little home repair projects.

[blows bangs out of eyes]

Got a few minutes?  There's a list.  Somewhere.  I just had it.  I swear.  

In all seriousness, Garth (not his real name) and I are hoping to make time to actually finish several projects we've few years ago, or twenty, like:

  • The kitchen:  there's the ceiling (i.e. actually put one up, or just paint the damned drywall, already) and the cabinets (oh, they're up, just old) these really DO need our immediate attention!
  • The bathroom:  whose idea was it to wallpaper it, anyway?  Oh wait, that would be me (shuddup Ty Pennington!)
  • Our bedroom:  see kitchen notes (minus cabinets.)
  • Girls' bedroom:  They're 17, 15 and almost 10, so the Barney colors have G2G (see bathroom notes!)
  • Dining room:  In a moment of, "Do'oh, I just can't take it anymore," my husband came home from work, one day, and found the fugly brown rug rolled up at the curb, years ago.  I was surprised to find a beautiful hardwood floor underneath that is now SCREAMING for a new coat of varnish (seriously, I hear it whimpering in my sleep!)
  • The livingroom:  is in between the dining room and kitchen and, well, it would also be EXTREMELY jealous if we didn't, you know, pay its walls at least some attention, too.
  • The boy's roomstill needs a door, DAMMIT!

Hence, the reindeer gift tag addressed to, "Daddy!"

[sound of crickets]

No, it's NOT a door!  Besides, Garth (not his real name) and I adopted the "no gifting each other" rule this year (stupid economy!) it is, however, a BIG bunch of good intentions all wrapped up with a pretty little bow and everything!

Shhhhh, don't tell him...okay?

My OTHER Reverb 10 stories.

© 2003 - 2010 This Full House Blog / TFH Gone Shopping

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

Sew, What's Love Frickin' Got to Do With It, Anyway?


My oldest daughter had this really great idea.  You see, she needed to come up with a sewing project for a benefit fashion show at the high school, "Barbie Through the Ages."

What -- I didn't pick the name -- but, it was going to count as a HUGE part of her final grade, so, you know, what was I supposed to do?

"What do you have to make?"

Because, I do NOT sew, or help "make" anything, if it means having to use something other than hot glue gun, let alone...mechanical...with running parts and a very sharp object, that puts holes in things, on purpose.

"I have to make a wedding dress."

Holy crap, that should be easy, right?

"Actually for the wedding party."

Oh, okay, still I'm guessing a "NO!" on the hot glue gun.

"How about if I sew a dress for Barbie's sister, Kelly?"

Um, okay.

"Yeah, and maybe even get my baby sister to model it, too, right?"


Like, most everything that comes (and goes) around in this house, it sounded good, at first...on paper...but, if I had a dollar for each time one of my kids came home with a school project, that I did NOT have to buy, sell, or help them with, the night before, while in a sugar-induced shock, then I'd be poor AND a diabetic, by now.

Oh, wait...

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© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

It's not clothes that make the man, it's totally about the tie Charlie Brown!


My husband Garth (not his real name) works at a bank.  I can't say which one.  Actually, I could.  If I wanted to.  But, I won't.

Because, I'm not very happy with them at the moment and may say something that I will regret, later.

But, I don't work for them; he does.

Right now,, wait...we need him to have this job, more than the satisfaction it would give me to tell them just what exactly I thought of their new and improved way of making sure that Garth (not his real name) spends more time on the road, away from us, selling stuff for them.


He comes home to me and there's very little else I can do.  But, be here.  Waiting.  Listening.  Hoping.  Looking for ways in which, wait...we can make it a little, you know, better.

Unfortunately, they don't leave me much to work with.

"How was your day?"

He'll loosen his tie, shrug his shoulders, ask about mine, instead and I can't help but hesitate, before answering, wondering if I should really tell him, while I try NOT to notice just how gray his hair has gone.

"I see you're wearing one of my favorite ties."

For the of years, every birthday and gift-giving holiday, the kids and I give Garth (not his real name) a new "fun" necktie.

"I felt a little Charlie Brownish, today"

Sympathetic to the fact that Garth (not his real name) HAS to get dressed and all the negative connotations that go along with having to spend the better part of everyday in "a suit."

"Wait until you see what the kids and I are cooking up for Christmas!"

Garth (not his real name) have already agreed that gifts are just for kids - stupid unattainable and totally unreasonable budget quotas, and all - I was trying to come up with something that would help remind him of, wait...who he's really, you know, working for.


Okay, I guess he's thinking of the one we got him last year, with The Grinch, that lights up and plays, "Have A Holly, Jolly Christmas."

"Just wait, you'll love it."

Do you want to know what it is?


Since, he's not allowed to hang pictures on his wall, or keep pictures of us family on his desk, either - nor, does he have the time to read my blog - I thought it would be safe to show you this cool tie I ordered and designed over at with the words "Got Revenue?"

I think it's fun AND totally business appropriate, especially for today's quintessential family guy - who just needs to be reminded, every now and again - GET A LIFE, CHARLIE BROWN!

What, ya' think it's a bit too LOUD?

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.