Heart Rocks…….

Many years ago Handsome started giving me rocks that he would find in the shape of hearts.  Not ones that had been cut or shaped into a heart…but natural ones. My heart rock collection has grown ….. and continues!

It’s like a little Godwink when you look down and find a piece of nature that has been shaped into a heart.  {My pastor’s wife dropped by one day and left me a potato that was shaped like a heart. It was fun to find it in the mailbox, and then display it in the kitchen. It lasted several months! ha!}

heart rock collection

They have come from all over the nation….and some from other lands.

It’s like Valentine’s year-round! =)

Do you collect anything from nature?  Or is there one thing in particular that you have always collected, and probably always will?

There are some things that I collect for a season….and then move on; but heart rocks, vintage shave brushes, and ‘P’s’ are something that I always have and probably always will collect.

You can see my post about Collecting P here

and Collecting Vintage Shave Brushes here

Happy Beginning of Valentine Week!

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Valentine Mantel……..

We don’t decorate a whole lot for Valentine’s Day…but we do have a bit of fun in little places around our home.  I was in the mood to change the mantel a bit…and it was a tad too early to make it ‘springy’….so, I did a little impromptu Valentine Mantel.

valentine mantel

I gathered up all of the grainsack and red French ticking sachets that I could find around the house and put them in a little wire basket lined with linen. They are all filled with lavender and smell soooooo goooooddddd!

grainsack hearts

With three violinists in our home we have lots of violin sculptures….I thought they were perfect for the Valentine Mantel……..

cupid playing violin austin sculpture of violin and cello

Then I just filled in the rest of the space with all the white pitchers that I could find in the cabinets and on the shelves! I think I will fill them with roses for next week.

valentine mantel 2013

For the garland I used trim and ribbon in pinks, reds, and whites.

Valentine's Day MantelIt was fun to shop our cottage and pull this together. I love doing that. Didn’t spend a dime!

Do you do any Valentine decorating……or do you just sit back and enjoy the chocolate?

Hearts to you~

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Heart Rot

February…the month we think a lot about hearts.

Usually not too much about a condition called “Heart Rot”….

I shared this post last year…but it was a great reminder to me, so I thought I would share it again.

******

Several years ago when our middle daughter was 2 years-old

she was playing in a spot on the driveway …. under the largest,

prettiest oak tree in our yard.

I called her inside and a couple of minutes later Handsome came home

and parked in the spot that she had been playing.

Five minutes later we heard an awful sound….

like a huge explosion.

When we looked outside the large, beautiful oak tree had dropped one of its

largest branches onto Handsome’s car…..completely crushing it flat.

Just minutes earlier that would have been our little one.

We cleaned up the mess…it took days; and then had some

tree experts look at the tree.

On the outside the tree was absolutely beautiful…the picture of perfect health.

The loveliest in the yard….our favorite.

But inside it suffered from a condition called ‘heart rot’.

In other words…..the entire heart of the tree was completely rotten.

We had to take down this lovely creature. We were sad.

Here are some pictures I took during our autumn trip to Monticello in Virginia….

the home of Thomas Jefferson.

This is what heart rot looks like in a tree.

These lovely trees were gorgeous and appeared very prolific and healthy,

but when a storm came, they crumbled.

Heart Rot.

Trees are not the only living things that can get heart rot.

We can, too.

We can look and appear wonderful on the outside,

when on the inside {our heart} is rotting away.

When our hearts are left unchecked, untended….

or filled with what they were not intended to hold….

heart rot sets in.

Maybe it is past wounds that have been stuffed,

bitterness, unforgiveness, lies, answer envy…

{You know, when you feel like you are seeing everyone else’s prayers, dreams, etc. being answered and fulfilled and it seems yours are unheard and ignored….yep,

that’s answer envy…and it will easily lead to heart rot.}

A myriad of things can contribute to human heart rot.

In trees….there is no cure. The tree must be taken down. But, for us there is hope!

We can change course, perspective, choose to begin filling our hearts with truth,

and the rot can be turned into a thriving, lush heart again.

It takes work…but so worth it.

Several times in my life I’ve experienced heart rot try to set in.

It’s not pretty…and I don’t want it.

It will take diligence and intention to steer clear.

Have you checked yourself lately for heart rot?

This month of hearts is a great time to do it.

 Blessings~

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Some Heart Fun……

Can you believe that Valentine’s Day is two weeks from tomorrow!? Whoa!

I thought I would share some fun posts from long ago…all about the heart…and a fun tradition that we do a lot around here…Leave a Heart Trail……

You can read about leaving a Trail of Hearts Here:

heart trail

About the Guy That Stole My Heart Here:

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About the Girl Who Stole My Heart Here:

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About the Girl After My Own Heart Here:

who me

About Heart Rot Here:

large heart rot

About What Stains Your Heart Here:

heart stain on pavement

And an all-time favorite..you can read about the Many Nuances of “Bless Your Heart” Here:

bless your heart

Hope your heart is full today!

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Date Night Fun……

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Nineteen years ago today Handsome proposed……

seems like it wasn’t that long ago!

For you today….

50 Questions to Ask Your Spouse on Date Night

{that don’t really involve the kids or come up on  regular basis!}

May your heart be full today~

Love Notes on the Bathroom Mirror…..

It’s the little things we do each day that show our spouse and family

how much we love them…and how special they are.

I thought I would share something that we do year-round….

but would be great to start for Valentine’s Day.

Love Notes on the Bathroom Mirror

{or bedroom mirror, or any other mirror that is often used!}

The notes above are between me and my youngest daughter.

We make up silly poems, write affirmations back and forth,

“what I like about you” notes, and sometimes even apologize.

Sometimes we use lipstick, {you know the color you THOUGHT you would love, but didn’t……don’t mind messing those up}, and sometimes we use dry-erase markers.  We actually keep dry erase markers in the bathroom just for this use! ha! In the toothpaste drawer!

It’s fun to sneak into your child’s room after they have gone to bed and leave them a special note on their mirror to find when they wake up in the morning. What a great way to start the day….especially if maybe the day has something in it they are not looking forward to….a great way to encourage and tell them that they have what it takes…and no matter what you love them.

It’s lots of fun to leave fun love notes for your spouse to find either right before bed…or first thing in the morning to get their day of to a great start.

So, today {or tonight} I challenge you to find a mirror {or two!} and leave a special note….encouraging or spicy… for someone in your house to find.  🙂

You might just start a fun new tradition…..and you MIGHT just get a note back! You will definitely put sparkles in someone’s eyes and a warm fuzzy in their heart.

{Do you guys know about warm fuzzies? They are so 70’s…..ha! For another day…….}

Blessings~

PS  How many times did I use the word ‘fun’ in this post? I really like to have fun…..:)

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Trail of Hearts…..

Since it’s almost Valentines I thought I would share a fun

surprise that over the years we have done for each other.

It all started many years ago, BC {before children} when I did this for Handsome;

but over the years we have done it

 for the kids as well.

It’s easy. It’s fun. It can be free. 🙂

It makes the receiver feel SUPER special.

The TRAIL OF HEARTS.

{I think I needed some intro music. humph!}

This isn’t just for Valentines…have fun with it throughout the year!

To make your trail you will need to cut out hearts…in any kind of paper….to use for the trail.

We have used construction paper, aluminum foil, vintage paper, scrapbook paper, foam,

computer paper, etc….whatever you have around!

Start your trail from wherever you know the person will enter the house.

{Or, if you want them to wake up to it…start it at their bed.}

Make your trail leading to any fun place…or more than one place….

that will end in some kind of treat/fun/surprise, etc.

You can write things on your hearts…messages/arrows, etc.

Fun places that our trails have lead to???

A candlelit room with a bed covered in rose petals.

A special dinner.

A fun mini-party.

A basket of candy/treats.

A new violin.

A coupon book full of fun things!

A new outfit.

Something handmade just for them.

A special breakfast on test day.

Outside to a fun picnic and game.

And many more……

You can have so much fun this! Any time someone in our family sees a trail of hearts…..eyes sparkle and hearts are filled.  It’s a great way to bless your spouse, encourage your children….have fun with it!

 On non-Valentine days…think of where your spouse or child needs to be encouraged or affirmed, and make a trail of hearts to something special for them.

Trailin’ over here~

Sharing with: Skip to My LouSumo’s Sweet StuffTip Junkie,Today’s Creative BlogNot JUST a Housewife,  Blue Cricket DesignThe Shabby Creek CottageWhipperberryThe Idea Room,  Between Naps on the PorchFrench Country CottageThe Lettered CottageThrifty Decor ChickHouse of Hepworth’sFunky Junk InteriorsAt the Picket FenceMy Uncommon Slice of SuburbiaStuff and NonsenseCommon Ground,  DIY ShowoffHome Stories A to Z a.k.a. DesignSomeday CraftsOrganize and Decorate Everything,  2805Making the World CuterThe Girl CreativeCraftomaniacCarolyns HomeworkFingerprints on the FridgeTatertots & JelloBe Different Act NormalSerenity NowChatty ChicsNo Minimalist HereDIY By DesignSavvy Southern Style, Coastal CharmMy Romantic Home

Fun Valentine Ideas & Discoveries

I thought I’d share with you today some fun Valentine’s ideas

and inspiration that I’ve found lately.

{Click on the pictures to be taken to the source.}

I LOVE these printable stickers that you can

put on fruit and give as a fun, unique valentine!

This is a super fun printable…I might have to print this one out!

Love this idea of using paint chips for Valentine coupon books

or for fun bookmarks. I wonder if Lowe’s would notice if I took

oh, say, 40 or more red paint cards???

My kids used to do this each year….and would use them for their schoolwork, etc.

Some more fun printables……

My kind of Valentine table setting….love it!

Hope you have a super weekend~