Autumn's in the Air...
Falling in love with Autumn...I can't help it; the crisp, cool temps in the morning. The leaves that turn a variety of colors, eventually whirling to the ground as they fall, only to be blown away by the gusty winds of the on coming winter!
Smell that Pumpkin Spice everything; & it's available anytime I want to sip, munch, or savor the flavor of the season. My happy place is walking through the misty tree lined streets, while slowly taking it all in; "arting" around the house on a rainy day; or lounging on the porch typing away watching a storm roll by getting inspired for my next project! It's all about being outside for me, enjoying the weather's sights, sounds, & smells.
...DECORATING FOR FALL WITH AUTUMN INSPIRATION...
Just about the time school starts, I just want to focus on the fall decorations & day dream about what kind of autumn scenes will be created on my porch this year! Some years are more crazy-busy than others (like anybody else), so my designs reflect the time, energy, & effort I have to dedicate to that project each year. If this is one of those crazy-busy years for you, try a quick project to spruce up the front door, instead of designing the whole porch... a wreath or sign with a fall motif is a focal point where a pop of color can make a big impact! Both projects take little time, energy, & the effort depending on how involved you want to be with the design. Even if you have no time for creating a project yourself, you can purchase a premade or personalized wreath/sign that produces the same WOW effect. Check out these designs & get inspired! Each piece is created utilizing a variety of media to satisfy a variety of styles.
This wreath by Southern Gal Motifs is one of my favorites because it uses a non-traditional, bright color scheme of orange & blue. The addition of burlap creates a more casual, & definitely southern, feel.
Hello Fall is a more traditional wreath made with grape vines, dried foliage, ribbon, & a wooden sign nestled in the vines.
I thought this Rake Head wreath was a great nontraditional wreath that anyone can make! No fancy needed...just a rake, some twine or vines, some leaves, & a bow. Done!
...FALL INTO BACK TO school ORGANIZING this AUTUMN...
After making sure the Wonderwall/Command Center is set up & functioning as desired, we consider the study sessions after school or the school @ home kiddos (any student that does work @ home, not only home school kids). Student Centers are just as important as the Wonderwall because having a space dedicated to learning that's organized, also saves time, energy, & effort!
Student Centers can be as small or large, simple or complex, as you want (as long as it meets your needs)! Choose a space that is comfortable & motivating, but not relaxing or distracting. Start by figuring out what environment works for your family... knowing your learning style can help, but it doesn't determine the best environment for learning...
For example, we set up several small student centers in our house to accommodate a variety of learning environments. The kids each have desks in their room, which serve as their main center that contains all of their books, supplies, computers, etc. We have a spot set up in the breakfast/kitchen area, near the wonderwall, that serves as a supervised work space in case they either need help staying on task or answering questions. It also serves as the messy project space, since it's close to the kitchen sink & perfect for clean-up! Another spot is @ the dining table for times when spreading out is necessary; it's also out of the way, but still accessible enough to be available for whatever! For tips on creating a student center click the link below...
September 2018 Newsletter.
...CREATING COLORFUL ART FOR AUTUMN...
Re-purpose some of those old picture frames setting in boxes or the closet, & give them a new life that helps you stay organized as well!
When we moved, I realized how many picture frames we've acquired from various people or places. I took all of the pictures out to store in a safe place until I decide what to do about them permanently. What we were left with was a variety of frames that differ in shape, size, color, & materials. Some frames had glass, & some had none. Instead of tossing them, I re-purposed them into dry erase boards & chalkboards... great for wonderwalls or student centers, even holiday decor! The frames with missing glass are now chalkboards. The frames with glass became dry erase boards.
Why buy new frames when you can re-purpose the ones you already own? There are many ways to re-purpose frames...Here's a few ideas:
*To unify the lot, spray paint them all the same color or a specific color scheme to match your decor. Here's an example of a blended Bermuda technique on the left, & a dry brush technique on the right.
*To create a chalkboard, either paint the cardboard backing of the frame with chalkboard paint or adhere chalkboard vinyl/contact paper to the cardboard backing. The same can be done to create a white board!
*To create a dry erase board, utilize the glass in the frame or add some color by slipping a favorite piece of paper behind the glass, & you get instant design coordination.
We have been digital for the past few years when it comes to the family calendar, notes, & reminders...Now that our kids are @ the age where they need access to the family calendar, we have their technology (phone, iPad, tv, etc.) attached to the digital family calendar as well; they can add their info easily & see what everyone has going on that day. When I began writing this month's blog, I started thinking about all of the wonderwalls & student centers I've help create over the years. Then it dawned on me...my family's not the norm, the "in general." Most people I know still live a tangible life of calendars, notes, & reminders.
No matter how you communicate, the point is, communicate effectively to make life a little less stressful. Being "in the know," keeps everyone flowing smoothly.
Digital works for our family; however, I'm not saying everyone should go digital because that doesn't happen over night. So, unless you're willing to train yourself & the rest of the household for a while, it might not be for you & your family. Don't forget that organization doesn't happen over night, it's a process & a life skill that takes commitment!
Until you do go digital, here are a few ideas showing how some of the re-purposed frames fit into the wonderwall & student center idea:
This student center contains the books, folders, musical instruments, & art supplies in woven baskets. The wire basket contains the headsets. Markers, paint, & other office supplies are contained in clear jars to show what's in them easily. Ceramic containers hold mail & writing supplies. Each image shows how you can add onto the wall as needed.
*Always keep books & supplies out of the reach of young children. Remind kiddos about house rules when it comes to books & supplies...Yes, you'll have to remind them many times!
If you're a digital family too, having a message board handy in a central location is a great way to communicate visually on the short term... or maybe you're a family that schools their kiddos @ home & need a whole wonderwall to keep everyone on track... or you're a family with younger kiddos that need to learn how to accomplish goals with a check list that he/she can check off themselves... or maybe you want to incorporate re-purposed frames in a creative space for interchangeable drawing/writing projects! The possibilities are endless, just keep in mind age appropriateness when it comes to handling frames with glass. Some frames have Plexiglas/acrylic as an alternative for smaller kiddos. Those materials can be purchased @ a craft, hobby, or hardware store if it needs to be replaced.
Art is an awesome thing when you have the right pieces. Aesthetic art is just to look at, but applied art is functional & good looking!
Being organized is a life skill that starts with knowing how to be organized & how to maintain that organization. It's your life, let's take it back!