Are You Overwhelmed By Life?

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I don’t know about you, but life seems to become more difficult to navigate just when I think that I should have it all together!

Finishing school, getting married, having kids, buying a house – those are all things I planned on and expected to have in my life…deaths in the family, losing half of our income & our home, dealing with health issues on an ongoing basis, struggling with depression, doubting God – those were all unplanned and unexpected events in my life.

I arrived at a point where I had never been before: distrusting God’s hand in my life.

Wondering, “Am I being punished for choices I have made or have I just been too naive to realize that this is real life?”

I’ve always been one to try to see the positive in everything.  “God’s in control…He’s got a plan…He won’t give you any more than you can handle.”  I believed those things to be true but had never been truly tested to the point that I might question them…Wow, was I in for a rude awakening.  I thought my faith was rock-solid and then I began to see where my foundation was cracking under the pressure of it all.

I thought that I was doing so good, clinging to God through all of the tough times, going to church and women’s bible studies, spending time in prayer.  Where did the disconnect happen?  I’m still working on figuring it out…although it’s tough to sit and sift through those rough days of disappointment and sadness.  Could it be that I had this notion that if I made good choices, trusted God with my life and family and did my best to honor Him that I would have a smooth life?  Not that it would always be easy, but surely nothing more than I could handle?

For a time I think I subconsciously decided that I was better off taking my life into my own hands since God didn’t seem to care anymore.  At least that’s how I felt.  Have you ever felt like you stopped hearing from God?  I did.  It was like he was letting me figure it all out on my own.  Like He had walked away for a while…

At that time I stopped doing all those things that I had done for years: reading my Bible, listening to Christian music, journaling…it was just too hard to believe and trust in what I was reading and listening to.  They were just words.  It kills me to say that, but that’s how I felt.  I had allowed a wall to go up, which at the time I thought was to protect my heart from any more hurt…it turns out that wall kept my heart from connecting to God’s heart and from receiving true peace and joy from Him.

I’m still in the process of allowing God complete control over my life. It’s not easy to break down that wall of disappointment , anger and fear and to rebuild my trust in God as my ultimate provider and source of strength, peace and joy.  But I am so thankful for his unwavering love for me.  He relentlessly pursues me and beckons me  back into a trusting relationship with Him.

This morning I read a devotional by Lysa TerKeurst  entitled: “Will You Share Your Story?”  The verse she shared was from Genesis 50:20: “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.”

Lysa talks about the fact that life is impossible to do on our own strength.

“God met every one of my arguments with scriptures about relying not on my own strength, but on His….”

“He untangled my need for approval with the challenge to live for an audience of One.  He helped me to see where the voices of doubt were coming from and challenged me to consider the source.  And, quite simply, He loved me over and over again.”

I LOVE that last line…

I know now that God was there during all of my difficulties, fear and anger. He heard my cries for help.  I don’t understand why He allowed it all but I can see some of the bigger picture now…and I will choose each day to listen for His voice.

Is your Desk a Mess?

I’m digging into the archives again to bring you a post about my messy desk!

This is a great before & after…enjoy!


Today I decided to attack the paper monster that has been haunting me for the past few months!

The first photo is of my desk, which I started to organize (meaning I piled things on top & below because they belonged here!) when I worked on my Master Bedroom over the weekend…

Ughh!!  I really don’t enjoy sharing “before” photos!  But I suppose they do make the “afters” look that much better!!

So, I started by taking everything off of and out from under the desk & file cabinet.

I laid them on my bed so that I could start the sorting process…

I then decided to move my hubby’s charging station over to his nightstand to free up more room on top of my desk…

Next I emptied out my desk drawer into a bin…OMG!! How did all of that junk fit into one shallow drawer?!!!

As I started the sorting process, I decided which items I needed to keep on my desktop…

Ahhh, looking so much better!

Then I realized that I had forgotten about the monitor that I wanted to start using

as the screen is much larger than my laptop screen…

and hopefully with it being raised higher than my laptop, I will get fewer neck & head aches!

I just removed a few accessories and the monitor fit fine…and I still have plenty of desktop space…

Now onto the desk drawer…

And in the photo below you can see where my lovely daughter scratched her name into the desktop!

I made the mistake of letting her use this desk in her bedroom when she was younger – ugh!

I decided to put small bins into the drawer to keep me from using it to stash papers & other junk!

Hopefully I’ll be more apt to keep it clean & organized with it set up this way…

So all in all I am very pleased with my desk clean up!

Next I need to clean out my filing cabinet – purging last year’s  bills & filing the stack I have from this year…

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How I Organize My Crafting Space!

Hello!  I decided to pull a past post out of the archives (2010) to share with you this week!

Since I’ve been sharing a lot about how I organize my crafting supplies, I thought it was a good time to share how I organize my crafting spaces!


Since moving into our home in April (and losing my guest room/craft area!)

I now have my crafting armoire in my Master Bedroom.

I also store all of my extra craft supplies and my inventory of handmade &

store bought gifts in my Master closet so everything is centrally located.

My crafting armoire is on the wall next to our slider so I can see/hear the sights

and sounds of the pool & backyard while I’m creating :’)

Here’s a few photos:

My Craft Armoire!

More crowded than I’d like, but I’m happy that it all has a home!

Love my OTT-LITE!

The black tower on the right is actually a SIZZIX organizer that I use for my paper pads & paint chips.

Love this organizer-caddy thingy!

Bins of paper scraps that are leftover from other projects…

One of my ribbon organizers – I believe it’s called a “Ribbon Ring” but I can’t remember…

This beauty is great for taking supplies from place to place!

And here’s where I hide all of my totes and my Cricut – nicely hidden by my curtains :’)

Here’s a few of my “dream” crafting spaces:

Here is what to do:

If you want to link up a Crafting Spaces post, simply click on the title of your post at your own blog,

copy the link that is in the address bar, paste it in the link space below

(following the instructions as needed).

Then in the body of your post on your blog, link back to this party

so your friends and readers can find the party too!

When you’re all done linking up, click to visit as many links as you can!!

Have fun!

Thumbnails: This is a Blog Hop! 21 entries so far… you’re next!

Organized Crafts

My Crafting Space

Craft Room

Kid’s Craft Space

Chica’s craft room

Jo’s craft room

Curtains to Pillows

Craft Room Tour

Organizing toys

Maillardville Manor

Jenna Lou Designs

My Craft Dungeon

Creative Spaces

My Creative Space

My Creative Space

Craft Room revamped

Sarah’s Craft Room

unveiled last year

vintage inspired stu

My Scrappy Room

My Scrappy Room

My studio vignettes

Craftroom Workshop

Craftroom Workshop

This linky list is now closed.

What is a blog hop?
Get the code here…

Organized Craft Space: How I Store My Stamps

Today I want to share another way I organize my crafting supplies…

How I store my stamps…

How I Store My Stamps

I recently dumped out all my stamps onto my bed so that I could see exactly

what I had and to find a better way to organize them!


I found some clear plastic bins that I had around the house

and started sorting!


All of my alphabet stamps into one bin…




My Christmas stamps into another…


My small acrylic stamps store nicely in a 4 x 6 photo album


Which then goes into a bin that holds my larger acrylic stamps as well…



And the rest are sorted {loosely} by sentiment, birthday, animals…


And lastly, my ink pads…


Thanks for stopping by!

Home Stories A2Z

Organized Craft Space: How I Store My Paper


Hello!  A few years ago I shared with you

how I organize my crafting materials in my Craft Armoire.

Click here to see that post…



During the Holidays my craft armoire became a huge mess

so I spent a few days de-cluttering & re-organizing…






I have my 12 x 12 scrapbooking paper organized into several categories…




I have also added any sticker sheets or other large embellishments

that fit in these categories, to these boxes

to try & be more efficient & spend less time searching for things!

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I also have one box for Current projects

so that I can throw everything in there at the end of the day

and pick up where I left off when I have the time to go back to it




I believe this was used to hold Sizzix dies?

I got it for a steal at a yard sale & my 4 1/2″ x 6 1/2″ paper fit perfectly!




I still have a few problem areas…

My “scrap” bins are always overflowing because I don’t want to waste anything!

And my file drawer that holds my 8 x 10 paper is looking a little shabby too…


How do you organize your paper?

I would love to know!

Until next time,

Deb :)


P.S. I’m linking up to these Linky Parties!

Check them out!


Friday Flair Link Party



Create & Inspire Linky Party

Ladybird Ln,

Weekend Bloggy Reading

Do You Ever Feel Stuck?





Do you ever feel stuck?

 Like you just cant seem to get back to “normal”

no matter how hard you try?


I’ve been feeling stuck in a sickness rut for about two months now and I’m so over it!

My Dr. told me today that within a few days of taking my third round of meds

I should be feeling as good as new…Ummm, that’s what you said at my first visit!

Well, I can hardly blame her that my out-of-control asthma & bronchitis

led to pneumonia, which led to me feeling icky since Christmas

and that my lungs need one more round of steroids to completely clear up…

I’m crossing my fingers & earnestly praying that my Dr is right!!

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During this downtime, God has sent some much-needed encouragement via

some ladies whose blogs I read daily.

They each have different writing styles but God uses their words to touch me and

to encourage me to keep pressing on…


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The first blog is by Ann Voskamp ~ A Holy Experience

Ann is a homeschooling Mom who lives on a farm in Canada…

She has a best-selling book One Thousand Gifts


Yesterday Ann’s post was:

When You’re Ready for More than Hardly Surviving Your Life

The title got my attention right away!

I love how real and honest her writing is:

“Malakai wore his suede shoes through the snow this afternoon and they puddle this sad, soggy mess of ruin in the mudroom.

Three packages have been sitting in the mud room for two weeks waiting for just one person to finally make the 4 mile pilgrimage to the post office.

There were no clean underwear in the top drawer on Friday morning and tell me, what do you do there, just standing in your flimsy towel?

What saves you all the time from going a little bit insane?”


I giggle when I read her words, but I also want to nod my head & cry out -

“Yes!  I am not the only one who feels like I need to be put in the nut house

almost every day!”

You can read the entire blog post here to find out how we can

go from desperately seeking someone or something to save us from our messes…

to counting the gifts that God has given us & quenching the never-ending thirst…


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The second blog is by Emily Freeman ~ Chatting at the Sky

Her most recent post: Searching For What We Know For Sure: An Introduction 

was quite thought provoking for me…

She says: “I’m in a season now where I’m taking the things I thought I knew for sure and holding them up in my hands, walking around with them, asking questions of them and sometimes, setting them down on the table and asking God if I need to go ahead and leave them behind.”


Hmmm, I think that sound like a good thing to do, especially at the beginning of a new year, when you’re setting goals and contemplating the year(s) ahead…


Are you feeling “stuck”?

If so, I hope you’ll take some encouragement from the ladies above as I have…


Creating a Mini Album for my Etsy Shop

Hello There! I’ve spent this past week on the slow road to recovering from pneumonia so much of my time has been spent on my computer & iPhone, catching up on my favorite blogs and of course, Pinterest!


If you’ve been reading my blog for very long you will know that I have been wanting to re-vive my handmade business (card-making, scrapbooking, etc). I’ve spent quite a bit of time researching ways to streamline my efforts – from designing my creations to shopping or digging through my current supplies to actually making the project and then listing it on my Etsy shop and marketing it on FB, Twitter, etc.


All of this can be quite tiring and time consuming so I am currently doing careful research and prayerfully considering some business opportunities – more on this to come as things develop!


Here’s what I’ve been working on today – a sweet little mini album for a baby girl…

I started by deconstructing a blank album I picked up a few years ago…

Next, I picked out coordinating papers and trimmed them to fit the album.

Then, I inked the edges of the album pages & papers…and fast-forward to the finished product!


This was also my first attempt at blogging from the WordPress app on my iPhone instead of my computer!

December 2012 Wrap Up!


Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to you all!

I’m sure you & your family are just as exhausted as me & mine

from all of our holiday celebrations and fair share of illnesses!

I am on the {very, very} slow road to recovery from bronchitis & pneumonia…

I wouldn’t recommend it, but I am thankful that the worse of it didn’t hit until after Christmas!



I decided to do a December Wrap Up post to bring you up-to-date all at once!

I’m trying out a new way of editing photos that I’ve taken with my iPhone

so please feel free to let me know what you think :’)

After scouring the internet for the best iPhone apps & then test driving a few out,

here are the ones I used:

{thank you to Shelley from The House of Smiths for her great advice found here}

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1.  Pic Frame

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This app is very user-friendly & two of my favorite features are:

*The option to add text {labels} to my collages and

*The ability to save & export my creations to my phone & several sites such as Twitter, Flicker, Instagram,

as well as the ability to email them!

It’s definitely an app to check out as it’s only 99 cents…


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2. Instagram

Next, I uploaded my collages to Instagram, where I chose my favorite effect….again, easy~peasy!

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I present to you Deb’s Heart & Home December Wrap up!


My poor hubby spent the better part of two days cleaning out drains that were clogged by tree roots…

Check out his home-made root cutter with mega-long extension pole!


My parents made the long trek down from Lodi to spend a whole week with us!

They live on 5 acres, out in the country, thus the need for a sqiurrel trap!


We decided to bring our traditional drive-around-and-look-at-the-lights adventure up a notch

and wound up at the Riverside Festival of Lights ~ so beautiful!


On Christmas Eve we went to an afternoon Candlelight Service at my in-laws church

and then spent the evening at their beautiful home…

Christmas Day was spent in our home & my honey smoked a yummy ham!


We did a little after Christmas shopping with my folks & kids

and enjoyed some yummy appetizers at Yard House while sitting on the patio by the fire :’)


On our last family adventure the whole clan spent the afternoon in Old Town Temecula…

The weather was absolutely beautiful!  Crisp & cool…perfect window shopping weather!

Today has been cold & rainy so I’ve been snuggled up inside

enjoying the fire in the fireplace, as I edit pictures and finally update my blog!!

Goodnight for now,

Deb :’)

I’ve Been Busy Creating!

The past few weeks I’ve been busy scouring magazines & websites…

Trying to get my creative juices flowing!

Pinterest has been a great resource to help keep my ideas organized…

But I also find that I still need pen & paper…

Here’s a look at a few of the projects I’m working on…

I feel like I’ve had a lot of failed ideas along the way,

and it hasn’t been easy to see the ideas in my head

turn out like I thought they would…

But I think I’m on the right track!

Now if I just had some more time to play with all of this fun stuff!

Stay tuned…