Favourite Things

Our favourite show to watch together is The West Wing. We have all seven seasons on DVD and watch it once or twice a year. It is the perfect thing to watch on this cool, rainy night when we are recovering from summer colds.



DIY Old Window = Aged Map Artwork

I had so much fun doing my first window I decided to get the other one done while I was still in a crafty mood. (Also the missing piece came in the mail so I could finally work on it!) I love some of the map artwork I’ve seen on various blogs so I started looking at old maps online (very expensive) and then poster prints of old-looking maps (still more than I wanted to spend) and finally I settled on buying a modern map and aging it myself. The main reason most posters cost too much is the window size, it was hard to find something large enough to fit behind it – the map I did get was still a couple inches too small.

part 1

1. Gather your supplies (you can age paper using many methods – I have used tea, coffee and fire with varying results but soy sauce darkens it much faster, you just have to put up with the smell) I used soy sauce and a sponge brush to apply it. I ended up not using the tea bags this time.

2. Crumple, crush, destroy! I crumpled the map up into a big ball, I didn’t want just the folded lines left in the finished project.

part 2

3. Start staining your paper with the sauce. When I did this for Mrs. Gilchrist in grade 6 & 7 I would soak 8.5×11 paper on a cookie sheet but my map is larger than 2′ by 3′ so I settled with my ceramic stove top since it was smooth and had a ridge to hold in any excess liquid. I brushed it as evenly as possible but it actually looked great when it was uneven, more aged looking.

4. I then used my blow dryer to dry the map as much as possible, the soy sauce is very sticky! Drying with the hot setting helped a lot.

part 3

5. After it was as dry as I could get it I lined my ironing board with some wrapping paper and then covered the other side of the map with a second sheet and ironed it on a high setting. It helped smooth it out before attaching it to the window frame, careful of the soy sauce, it stuck to the wrapping paper a few times.

6. Since my map wasn’t quite the right size I lined the four edges with some plain craft paper and taped it all the way around. I also washed both sides of the window and then vacuumed as many of the loose paint chips off as I could.

part 4

7. I taped the map to the back of the window frame and then hubby put four saw tooth hangers across the top.

8. Finished! Quite happy with it. I chose London for my map because it is our dream to visit England one day.

Finished result big black

The final cost of this project was under $15! The only thing I had to buy was the map which cost a bit more because it was shipped from England. Have you done any home projects that were almost free?

DIY Old Window = Upcycled Chalkboard

The cottage always brings great memories to mind and a few years ago I grabbed a couple of the old porch windows for some projects. There they sat, in our basement, waiting for me to decide what to do with them. I finally have two ideas that I am really excited to try. The first one was to make the window into a chalkboard for our kitchen. In the photos here I have been using it as a menu board but I think I might do more of weekly schedule on it instead of just meals. 

I purchased a roll of chalkboard contact paper from Amazon. It is great because it is easy to remove so if I get tired of my chalkboard in a few years I can convert it back to a window fairly quickly. One of the window panes was broken so for the time being I have covered it in cardboard instead of replacing the glass. It will look nicer when I do replace the glass, the cardboard has fine lines in it that can be seen through the contact paper but I was trying to keep this as cheap as possible for the time being. 

I started by cleaning the glass on the side that  the paper would stick to. I used my Norwex cloths (if you don’t know what Norwex is click on the name and find out! They are amazing cleaning cloths and supplies that are chemical free. I used the enviro cloth and the polishing cloth.) I then had to vacuum the window edges again b/c so much old paint kept chipping off and I didn’t want it between the glass and the paper. 
Next I had to measure out the right amount of contact paper and stick it onto each pane. Easier said than done! It was hard to apply the paper straight. Good to also have wall paper applier or similar hard edge around to help with the air bubbles. I also had to measure and cut out the cardboard for the bottom broken pane. I’m happy with how it turned out, it is a huge window though. My hubby helped by putting some saw tooth picture hangers on the back and hung it for me as well. We laughed after it was hung because the window definitely warped over time, it looks kinda crooked on the wall! 

window chalkboard diy

Let Me Introduce…Myself

Hello, my name is Lindsey and I’m a failed blogger. I keep trying and I keep failing. So here goes the third try. I’m not sure why I think I will be more successful now that I have more children and busier days but I’m taking the chance anyways. So, you are welcome on this journey with me. I am interested in a lot of topics so this should be a pretty varied blog. I love to cook and bake, I have two kids, I am a photographer, a pastor’s wife and am starting down the do-it-yourself path so be prepared! 

Why “Abundantly Beyond”? Our favourite verse as a couple has always been Ephesians 3:21: “Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us.” We are so blessed beyond what we could ever ask for if we just trust Him to do what is best for us.