RECENT POSTS

Advent Calendar

This Christmas season I wanted to start an Advent tradition for our boys. Our oldest son is now four and loves reading books about the Christmas story. We enjoyed welcoming each day in December by opening a small drawer anticipating a new part of the story of Jesus' birth. Gabe would come running in to our room each morning announcing what number we needed to open today! Below are some photos and descriptions of what we did. 

advent calendar

The wooden tree and box with drawers I bought on sale at Michael's Craft Store. I stained the drawers and painted the rest of the box white, chimneys painted a brick pattern. I glued a few white snowflakes on as well. Preston bent nails and glued them in small holes to hold each one of our advent ornaments.

Advent calendar ornaments

Each advent ornament was made using small wooden circles from a pack from Michael's as well. Looped ribbon super glued to the back. I stained the wooden circles brown and attached a button figure or cloth, hay or piece of jewelry that I could find as a symbol for each verse I was using that day. Note: If you are wanting to make on for your family -  there are Natiivty scene and wise men Christmas buttons at craft stores now that should be on sale and ready for next year's calendar!

advent tree

Below are the list of symbols and verses with corresponding days of December. Each ornament was in the drawer number and then we would hang them on the tree where their number was written very small under the nail.

I used these --->buttons from Hobby Lobby/Michael's 

1. Angel Gabriel

Luke 1:26-28, 31

“In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, ‘Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you… You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus.’”

 

2. Mary

Matthew 1:18

“This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit.”

 

3. Joseph

Matthew 1:20

“…an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, ‘Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.’”

 

4. Cross

Salvation through Jesus’ sacrifice

Matthew 1:21

“‘Mary will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.’”

 

5. String

Jesus bridged the gap between Heaven (God) and earth (humanity)

Isaiah 7:14

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.” (Immanuel - God witih us)

 

6. Star of David

Line of David/Jesus’ genealogy

Luke 2:4

“So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to house and line of David.”

 

7. Donkey

Journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem

Luke 2:5
“Joseph went to Bethlehem to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.”

 

8. Lion

Lion represents house of Judah

Micah 5:2

“‘But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,

though you are small among the clans of Judah,

out of you will come for me

one who will be ruler over Israel,

whose origins are from of old,

from ancient times.’”

 

9. Baby Jesus

Luke 2:6-7

“While they were in Bethlehem, the time came for the baby to be born, and Mary gave birth to her firstborn, a son…”

 

10. Piece of soft cloth - Swaddling blanket

Luke 2:7

“…Mary wrapped Jesus in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.”

 

11. Peace Sign - Jesus is Prince of Peace

Isaiah 9:6

“For to us a child is born,

to us a son is given,

and the government will be on his shoulders.

And he will be called

Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,

Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

 

12. Sheep

Luke 2:8-11

“And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.’”

 

13. Pieces of hay

Manger

Luke 2:12

“‘This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.’”

 

14. Many gold “halos”

Multitude of angels

Luke 2:13-14

“Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest; and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.’”

 

15. Bells

Spreading the word and carrying the message to others

Luke 2:15-18

“When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, ‘Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.’ So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.”

 

16. Dirt or rocks

Kneeling on the ground – our right response to Jesus as God

Psalm 95:6

“Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker; for he is our God and we are the people of his pasture, the flock under his care.”

 

17. Heart

The emotions of Mary as Jesus’ earthly mother

Luke 2:19-20, 33-35

“But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.”

… “The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about [Jesus]. Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: ‘This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.’”

 

18. The name Jesus

The name Jesus is the Greek form of Joshua, which means “the Lord saves”

Luke 2:21

“On the eighth day, when it was time to circumcise him, he was named Jesus, the name the angel had given him before he had been conceived.”

 

19. Two doves

Sacrifice of doves by Joseph and Mary, Holy Spirit like a dove at his baptism later in life

Luke 2:22-24, 3:21-22

“When the time of their purification according to the Law of Moses had been completed, Joseph and Mary took [Jesus] to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, ‘Every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the Lord’), and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord: ‘a pair of doves or two young pigeons.’”

 

20. Light/Lantern

Revelation of Jesus as Christ the Savior to Simeon and to all people

Luke 2:25-32

“Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:

‘Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,

you now dismiss your servant in peace.

For my eyes have seen your salvation,

which you have prepared in sight of all people,

a light for revelation to the Gentiles

and for glory to your people Israel.’”

 

21. First Magi

Matthew 2:1

“After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem.”

 

22. Second Magi

Jesus is King of Kings

Matthew 2:1-2

“… Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, ‘Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him.’”

 

23. Star

Star that the Magi followed

Matthew 2:9-10

“After [the Magi] had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen in the east went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed.”

 

24. Third Magi

Gifts from the Magi to Jesus

Matthew 2:11

“On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh.”

20171222-untitled-551.jpg
20171222-untitled-531.jpg
20171222-untitled-522.jpg
20171222-untitled-525.jpg
20171222-untitled-562.jpg
advent tree
20171222-untitled-538.jpg

Fixer Upper | Dollhouse Edition


NANA'S DOLLHOUSE FOR AUDREY

Spindle Life Blog | Fixer Upper Mini Remodel | October 2017


FIXER UPPER FINAL EDITS.jpg

My mother-in-love (Beth) and husband's grandmother (Nana) found a cute little dollhouse at a thrift shop for a steal! $21.97 to be exact! I saw the dollhouse sitting in Beth's garage for awhile when we would come to visit. They had purchased it with little miss Audrey in mind (my only niece, Beth's only granddaughter) and had plans to fix it up for her.  I've always secretly wanted a dollhouse, being a boy mom I saw this as my one and only opportunity to design and decorate one myself. I asked if I could take it off their hands for a remodel for precious Audrey, to return it when it is ready. They said YES! Our inspiration was, of course, Chip and Jo and their Fixer Upper style. ( I hope if you two ever see this you are not too offended, we tried our best!)

Audrey, we can't wait for you to imagine and play in this dollhouse, we hope YOU love it!

FIXER UPPER DOLLHOUSE INSPIRATION

B E F O R E - we have a lot of remodeling to do. I think most of these walls need to go and we should paint a lot of things WHITE.

FIXER UPPER DOLLHOUSE BEFORE

KITCHEN+DINING

Objective: Open up the room to the rest of the home, update the kitchen with new appliances and make it a more functional space for Audrey's dolls to create gourmet meals and yummy southern food.

FIXER UPPER DOLLHOUSE KITCHEN

Scroll through the photos below to see the kitchen remodel! This part was fun, we opened up the space by removing the wall separating the kitchen and the living area, adding cedar beams, and painting the kitchen a lighter color. Preston made a farmhouse table for our dollhouse family. We added hints of copper lighting and other copper details around the room. The greenery adds a refreshing touch to the kitchen. Custom chalk board for the dollhouse family to write notes or the week's menu. Cabinets custom designed and crafted by Preston, added a fresh coat of pain and sealant to make the counters shine. Knobs made from beads. Moss balls are a must-have for any Texas dining room table.


GIRL'S ROOM

Objective: Create space with soft pinks and coral hues, a perfect space for a doll to play and dream

FIXER UPPER DOLLHOUSE BEDROOM

The floral accents ansd soft coral hues give this room a fun and peaceful feel. Refurbished furniture and lamp made from a bead, ribbon, and toothpick.

Scroll through the photos above to see the before and after remodel of the little girl's room. We removed the 70's style floral wallpaper revealing walls ready to be painted a soft pink. Paper floral accents add a soft touch and the furniture was painted white to freshen up the space. New white trim was placed around the windows. 


BATH

Objective: Open up the closed in space so dollhouse bathroom can be easier to play in. Liven up the space with bright colors and white SHIPLAP.

FIXER UPPER DOLLHOUSE BATHROOM

Scroll through the photos below to view bathroom details, cabinet made by my crafty man Preston. We removed the extra doorway so the bathroom would be larger. Details include; lights made from beads, coaster for a rug, towels out of ribbon, bottle topper for a towel holder, nails for faucet, and small wooden tree limb table with nails for legs. Don't forget the SHIPLAP on the walls! 


LIVING

Objective: Create an inviting space free of spiderwebs and paneling, where doll guests and family can retreat, relax, and read a good book of Audrey's choosing.

FIXER UPPER FINAL EDITS6.jpg

Scroll through below for the before and after photos of the living room reveal. We removed the out dated wooden paneling and replaced it with smooth painted walls and white trim. Preston and I wanted to open up the space between the living and dining areas (naturally) so we removed the wall next to the stairs to open up the area and replaced the support with cedar beams. We painted the stairs white to brighten up this space. Deep blue floral pillows were added for a touch of color to the sofa set AND don't forget the GIANT clock on the wall (because what is a fixer upper redo without a giant clock?). Cedar table handcrafted by my handy carpenter, Preston Spindle using a cedar wedge and nails for legs. 


MASTER SUITE

Objective: Create a relaxing environment for the dollhouse mom and dad to rest. If their children are anything like ours they need a quiet place to retreat. We added simple and stylish details to make this space comfortable and refreshing.

FIXER UPPER DOLLHOUSE BEDROOM

Bedside tables made from napkin holders, small watch facing as our alarm clock. New trim around floor, ceiling, and windows. 

Scroll through the photos above to see the before and after photos of Audrey's Fixer Upper Dollhouse Master Suite remodel. We removed the floral wallpaper and chose soft gray for the walls of the master suite accented with the white trim and floral bedding. 


DOLLHOUSE FIXER UPPER

We set aside and outdoor dining space for the dollhouse family to sit and enjoy their beautiful backyard or gather for an informal dining experience.


FIXER UPPER DOLLHOUSE BEFORE AND AFTER

Exterior updates with new colors, updated front door, and stone pathway.

Exterior updates with new colors, updated front door, and stone pathway.

FIXER UPPER DOLLHOUSE
FIXER UPPER DOLLHOUSE

Thanks to these sweet designers/builders who gave their opinion every step of the way...and even drove their monster trucks through the house to make sure it was "truck approved". The trucks approved and loved knocking all the cookware off of the counters.

How exciting to welcome a new dollhouse family to this 70's style Fixer Upper, we hope little miss Audrey and the other Spindle grands enjoy it for years to come! We hope you liked our crazy & rather weird dollhouse post and come back to visit again! Love, The Spindles

How exciting to welcome a new dollhouse family to this 70's style Fixer Upper, we hope little miss Audrey and the other Spindle grands enjoy it for years to come! We hope you liked our crazy & rather weird dollhouse post and come back to visit again! Love, The Spindles

Check out our Spindle Life Shop for more inspiration and fun gifts!

Spindle Life Etsy Shop

Butterfly Garden | Attracting Migrating Monarchs

This past Spring one of my goals for the summer and fall was to make my Central Texas garden friendly to all kinds of pollinators. My son's school has a Monarch Waystation. Each day I would pick him up from school and we would stop and watch the busy butterflies drinking nectar and the caterpillars munching on leaves. I researched the plants in their garden and added a few of my own.

The great news is - it worked! And it was EASY to add these plants to our garden! I will share a few of the plant species we used, and the benefits I have seen not just for our winged friends but for our home as well. This stuff makes me really excited. Plant/bug nerd over here... and I'm not ashamed!

Our first big day of Monarch migrators arrived October 13, 2017. This monarch is enjoying a tropical milkweed plant - ASCLEPIAS CURASSAVICA (other names include scarlet milkweed, Mexican milkweed, bloodflower, and silkweed)

Our first big day of Monarch migrators arrived October 13, 2017. This monarch is enjoying a tropical milkweed plant - ASCLEPIAS CURASSAVICA (other names include scarlet milkweed, Mexican milkweed, bloodflower, and silkweed)

Tropical Milkweed and Monarch butterfly

Tropical Milkweed and Monarch butterfly

This past Spring I purchased a Tropical Milkweed from Home Depot (I think they had called it Butterfly Plant or something like that). I planted it in a sunny spot and the stems grew tall and lanky reaching toward the sun. The monarchs, wasps, bees, & hummingbirds love it's bright red and yellow flowers. It has been recommended that if you grow it in zones 7-10 that you should cut back your Tropical milkweed after Monarch migration is over.  The bloom time is longer than Monarch migration and may encourage Monarchs to stay even when it is too cool for them. More research is needed! These plants are hosts to Monarch larvae as well. You can bring this plant inside over winter in a planter. Let me tell you our migrating friends love this plant!

Monarch and Mexican Sunflower blooms

Monarch and Mexican Sunflower blooms

Mexican Sunflower - (Tithonia Torch) - talk about a BUTTERFLY MAGNET. Mexican Sunflowers are amazing. I bought a packet of seeds from Lowe's this Spring on a whim, thought it may be fun to grow a different type of sunflower in our garden. These plants are extremely easy to grow from seeds. My sons helped me plant the seeds directly in to our garden in March. I had saved a few seeds and planted a those again in May. They grow quickly and turn in to giant bush-like butterfly trees! We have found that hummingbirds, swallowtail butterflies, and Monarchs love them. We have three Mexican Sunflowers still going strong in our backyard, one of them is at least ten feet tall towering over our backyard fence like a beacon to butterflies and hummingbirds! These plants flower more if you deadhead them every 2-3 days...our ten foot tree is a little too tall for me. I have our plants staked so they do not topple over on a windy/rainy day. They are heavy plants with all their flowers and stems so staking is necessary to prevent them from falling. Our ten foot sunflower tree is attached to our fence using wire hangers, works great!

Mexican Sunflower up close and personal - Torch variety attracts pollinators the best. My sons smell their blooms and end up with yellow pollen noses. 

Mexican Sunflower up close and personal - Torch variety attracts pollinators the best. My sons smell their blooms and end up with yellow pollen noses. 

Mexican Sunflower Torch Variety

Swallowtail caterpillar Host plants/Food - we found swallowtail caterpillars on our dill, parsley, and carrots.

Monarch caterpillars need to consume milkweed.

Spindle garden - a wild mix of Mexican Sunflowers, zinnia, asparagus, cardinal climber, morning glory, basil, bell peppers, red salvia, dill, black-eyed susans, and who knows what else! 

Spindle garden - a wild mix of Mexican Sunflowers, zinnia, asparagus, cardinal climber, morning glory, basil, bell peppers, red salvia, dill, black-eyed susans, and who knows what else! 

Butterflies were also attracted to Indian Blanket, Horsemint, Texas Lantana, and Turk's Cap that we had growing in various places in our backyard and front yard.

Gregg's Mist Flower

Gregg's Mist Flower

Gregg's Mist Flower is another great option for butterfly gardens, I purchased one from a nursery in Denison, Texas. It is a perennial plant that works as a great garden filler, the stems are long and the flowers are not too showy. They spread through underground rhizomes so dig deep when spreading them to other gardens or giving them to friends!

Zinnia - different varieties

Zinnia - different varieties

The differnet types of swallowtail & frittillary butterflies really liked the Zinnia flowers-- ** NOT TO MENTION all of these flowers make beautiful arrangements for your home in a vase on your dining room table! **

The differnet types of swallowtail & frittillary butterflies really liked the Zinnia flowers-- ** NOT TO MENTION all of these flowers make beautiful arrangements for your home in a vase on your dining room table! **

Monarch Watch website lists these plants/seeds (listed below) as their recommended seeds and plants for a Monarch Migrating Station.  I hope to grow more of these varieties and find out what works best for our gardens!

The Standard Monarch Waystation Seed Kit, for gardens east of the Rocky Mountains, contains the following species:

MILKWEED
Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa) 
Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) 
Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) 

GENERAL NECTAR PLANTS
Indian Blanket (Gaillardia pulchella)
Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)
Joe Pye Weed (Eupatorium purpureum)
Scarlet Sage (Salvia coccinea)
Tithonia Torch, Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia)
Zinnia, Dahlia Mix (Zinnia elegans) 

The Western Monarch Waystation Seed Kit, for gardens west of the Rocky Mountains, contains the following species:

MILKWEED
Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa) 
Narrowleaf Milkweed (Asclepias fascicularis) 
Showy Milkweed (Asclepias speciosa) 
Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) 

GENERAL NECTAR PLANTS
Blue Sage (Salvia farinacea) 
Chia (Salvia columbariae)
Scarlet Sage (Salvia coccinea)
Tithonia Torch, Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia) 
Zinnia, Dahlia Mix (Zinnia elegans)

------------Thanks for reading! You may enjoy our post on our small Central Texas Garden

Paintings and Sketchbooks from Summer

Summer has been lots of fun for the Spindle family. Even with two wild boys and another on the way I found some time to steal away and paint. The fresh cut flowers from our gardens always help liven up my art space. This is the first summer I have planted zinnia seeds, they are so easy to grow and offer such a great pop of color! I hope to grow them every year. 

20170811-untitled-94.jpg

Painted Stones - Room on the Broom

We love reading the story Room on the Broom. We love it so much I painted the characters on stones for our kiddos. I hope you enjoy them!

20170917-untitled-317.jpg

Working on the rocks, using little tiny brushes!

I may have a few painted rock sets available on my Etsy site, check it out!

Spindle Life Etsy Shop

20170917-untitled-280.jpg
20170917-untitled-296.jpg

Dog, from Room on the Broom

20170917-untitled-284.jpg

The witch! She is so cute with her crazy hair and wart on her nose. Always makes me smile!

These rocks are adorable as display on a shelf or in a garden. I paint them with acrylic paint. I have found Martha Stewart's craft paint to layer on the rocks the best and with the most coverage. I will sometimes add details with a fine point sharpie marker. The rocks are sealed with Americana Acrylic paint sealer to help prevent wear and tear over time. 

I hope enjoyed my creations and it inspires you to craft with your little one as well!

Thank you, Lauren Spindle

Painted Stones - The Perfect Sandbox Toy

       Being a boy mom is so much fun, why else would I have a reason to paint tiny vehicles on rocks? Our boys and I have been painting the alphabet letters and pictures on rocks to learn the ABC's. I was encouraged by friends to paint cars on rocks for sandbox/outside toys so I have made a few of these sets available on Etsy if you would like to check them out! We love playing with them in the sandbox, and also they are just adorable hanging out in our garden to enjoy. What is more fun than playing with rocks? Maybe rocks with cars on them :)

Check to see if I have an available set here : Spindle Life Etsy Shop

 

fire truck
20170916-untitled-52.jpg

Stones are painted with Acrylic paint and small details are added in with Sharpie markers. I seal the stones with Americana Acrylic Paint sealer to prevent some wear and tear. 

A City Transportation Set: Fire truck, school bus, police car, and  Stop Sign. 

A City Transportation Set: Fire truck, school bus, police car, and  Stop Sign. 

There is a  painted dot on the back of each rock - to learn colors & easily find rocks that are turned over

There is a  painted dot on the back of each rock - to learn colors & easily find rocks that are turned over

20170916-untitled-26.jpg
Construction Site Set - Dump Truck, Cement Mixer, Excavator, Backhoe, Construction Sign

Construction Site Set - Dump Truck, Cement Mixer, Excavator, Backhoe, Construction Sign

20170916-untitled-65.jpg
20170916-untitled-223.jpg

Each stone is sealed to be weatherproof and fit for the outdoors. However, no sealer will permanently protect the painted stones left outside. I recommend spraying your outside painted rocks with a Krylon acrylic sealer if the design begins to fade with lots of love, or if you notice any sign of wear and tear. 

20170916-untitled-224.jpg

Thank you for visiting our site! I hope you enjoyed these stones and it inspires you to create for your little one as well!

Lauren Spindle

Central Texas :: Small Gardens

         I have loved living in Central Texas. One of the great things about living here is being able to garden almost year-round. I wanted to create a post of the plants and flowers we have had success with here at our home in Temple, Texas. Our two young sons are very involved in our gardening. They help with picking out and planting the seeds, pulling weeds, and harvesting our fruits and veggies (and by harvest I mean they eat almost everything before we even have a chance to bring our hard work in the house). I don't care where they eat them as long as they are eating VEGETABLES! Our vegetable/sunflower garden receives morning sun and late afternoon shade, we have it in the lowest sunny spot in our yard. Our fenced-in garden is 8 x 12 feet and Preston built it in the very hot summer of 2013 right after we moved in to our home. We had great success with squash and zucchini that first year! We used the existing soil and added about 6 bags of garden soil at this time.

One of our favorite plants to grow are sunflowers! We have grown all types and my boys absolutely love them! We follow the directions on the seed packet and always plant the seeds in early March. There is nothing like seeing a giant flower towering over your head, we leave the dried up sunflower heads out by our bird feeders for the dove to feast on when they are spent.

We have two planters attached to the fence to grow our strawberries. I like having our strawberry plants off of the ground and hard for little boys to reach. This keeps the snails and rolly pollies out of them...as well as anxious fingers trying to pick the green berries too soon. We uncover the green berries and prop them up on top of the leaves, I think it makes them turn red faster but this is not a proven fact ;) Holes were drilled in the bottom of these planters so the water doesn't collect in the planters and drown the plants. I like hearing hummingbirds whizzing by while working in the garden, so we've had a feeder here two summers.

We have two planters attached to the fence to grow our strawberries. I like having our strawberry plants off of the ground and hard for little boys to reach. This keeps the snails and rolly pollies out of them...as well as anxious fingers trying to pick the green berries too soon. We uncover the green berries and prop them up on top of the leaves, I think it makes them turn red faster but this is not a proven fact ;) Holes were drilled in the bottom of these planters so the water doesn't collect in the planters and drown the plants. I like hearing hummingbirds whizzing by while working in the garden, so we've had a feeder here two summers.

Picking berries on a chilly May morning.

Picking berries on a chilly May morning.

We have sugar snap peas (we planted the seeds in late February/early March) growing up the side of our garden fence. Our Gordon setter likes to help herself to a little sugar snap snack. Sugar snap peas like to climb, make sure they have a trellis or fence to travel up. Garden basket to keep all the shovels and rakes for the little gardeners. This is our garden and youngest son this year, May 2017.

We have sugar snap peas (we planted the seeds in late February/early March) growing up the side of our garden fence. Our Gordon setter likes to help herself to a little sugar snap snack. Sugar snap peas like to climb, make sure they have a trellis or fence to travel up. Garden basket to keep all the shovels and rakes for the little gardeners. This is our garden and youngest son this year, May 2017.

This was our garden last April 2016, little boys grow faster than a garden. Youngest spindle boy chomping on asparagus.

This was our garden last April 2016, little boys grow faster than a garden. Youngest spindle boy chomping on asparagus.

Sugar snap peas. Crunchy and sweet! Little boys love em'!

Sugar snap peas. Crunchy and sweet! Little boys love em'!

Mama kitty, Tiger, surrounded by nasturtium, basil, cilantro, bell peppers, and a flower I planted last summer that is trying to take over. 

Mama kitty, Tiger, surrounded by nasturtium, basil, cilantro, bell peppers, and a flower I planted last summer that is trying to take over. 

  Italian oregano will quickly take over your garden if you let it! I've given parts of mine to all my gardening friends around town.

 

Italian oregano will quickly take over your garden if you let it! I've given parts of mine to all my gardening friends around town.

These two also like to help out in the garden.

These two also like to help out in the garden.

We plant poppy seeds every October, I have to look out for them first thing in late January/ February as the tiny plants start popping up in our garden! We have to remember not to cover them over completely with new garden soil. I have always had a handful of the seedings do well. Here they are in April with sunflower sprouts all around them, and some asparagus trying to grow in them.

We plant poppy seeds every October, I have to look out for them first thing in late January/ February as the tiny plants start popping up in our garden! We have to remember not to cover them over completely with new garden soil. I have always had a handful of the seedings do well. Here they are in April with sunflower sprouts all around them, and some asparagus trying to grow in them.

Our favorite gardening attire is pajamas. To the left we have an asparagus bed, I planted two year old asparagus roots (from Home Depot) in February 2014 and have had asparagus in the spring ever since! We let our asparagus turn in to trees late summer and build up energy for the next harvesting season.

Our favorite gardening attire is pajamas. To the left we have an asparagus bed, I planted two year old asparagus roots (from Home Depot) in February 2014 and have had asparagus in the spring ever since! We let our asparagus turn in to trees late summer and build up energy for the next harvesting season.

We have blackberry vines all along our backyard fence, one of our plants produces huge berries in late summer!

We have blackberry vines all along our backyard fence, one of our plants produces huge berries in late summer!

You can root the ends of the blackberry off shoots in to the ground, once roots form cut it from the vine and you will have a new blackberry to plant some where else in your yard! Or give to a friend.

You can root the ends of the blackberry off shoots in to the ground, once roots form cut it from the vine and you will have a new blackberry to plant some where else in your yard! Or give to a friend.

The previous owners of our home planted two peach trees and we are grateful! Summer 2015 we had an amazing peach harvest!

The previous owners of our home planted two peach trees and we are grateful! Summer 2015 we had an amazing peach harvest!

THIS delicious recipe made from our peaches & blueberries from HEB!

THIS delicious recipe made from our peaches & blueberries from HEB!

Nasturtium is easy to grow in pots and in the garden, their circular leaves and beautiful flowers are edible and so pretty to look at!

Nasturtium is easy to grow in pots and in the garden, their circular leaves and beautiful flowers are edible and so pretty to look at!

Little Tikes makeover : Fire Truck

      Preston and I found a Little Tikes car on the side of the road 2 years ago that had a "FREE" sign on it. I finally got around to making it in to something fun - just in time for Halloween! This little Paw Patrol Marshall puppy was pretty happy about the whole thing. I went through lots and lots of painters tape to make this ride. There is a red tupperware from the dollar store on the top for the light plus the metallic silver spray paint really made this well-loved and beat up coop shine. 

Fire truck
fire truck little tikes

This truck is sure to get many dings and scrapes but hey, that's a sign of a beloved boy's toy.  

If you liked this post you may want to check out our son's first room - and artwork made by me to go along with it. 

Gabe's Woodland Nursery

Woodland Artwork

Hot Air Balloon Series

Red Deer

    This is the first piece of artwork I've created since I had sweet baby Gabe. Motherhood has changed me and I am excited to see how I grow as an artist through this new journey. This painting is very special to me because I had my sweet little baby in his carrier, snuggled up against me through the whole painting process. It's definitely boy inspired, blues from the baby room, with dark browns and yellows.

    I painted this piece from a photo I took last december of a very old elk or red deer. I've always loved the photo and have wanted to paint him for some time now.  I am excited that this piece will be auctioned off for a good cause in March in Texarkana. I hope someone really enjoys having this piece in their home...I really wanted to keep it! 

old elk artwork

 Red Deer

20 x 24"

Mixed media on canvas

 

    I kept this painting simple with loose strokes and lines made with color pencils. Mixed media was collaged in the background but painted over. I thought the subject was beautiful and wanted to keep the focus completely on him, I thought he was a very elegant creature. 

the old elk 2

details...

the old elk 3



Peek Children Portrait

Peek Children Portrait

36 x 36"

Acrylic on Canvas

 

        I loved creating this piece for the Peek family. This painting shows their precious daughter holding a cookie away from the family dogs and her little brother. 

Cowboy Troubadour :: Nursery

     Recently I was contacted by my friend Kim to create a piece of artwork for their baby boy's room. The nursery designed for him is absolutely adorable, all it needed was a portrait of the family dog to display!  I loved creating this piece for such a sweet family, and I know they are going to enjoy that baby boy when he gets here!

Also a BIG thank you goes out to my awesome mother for playing with baby Gabe so I could finish this in a timely manner!!

 

Here he is, Troubadour in all his glory:

Troubadour

24 x 36

Acrylic on Canvas

 

Artwork by Lauren Spindle on www.spindlelife.net

Marilyn Pop Art

It has been a long time since I have had the opportunity to paint some pop art pieces! In college I painted pop art to sell at Sweet Eugene's in College Station. When I went to dental school I used to paint pieces like this for Cafe Brazil in Deep Ellum. They were always so much fun to create.

This Marilyn Monroe pop art piece is for sale at Southern Bling Boutique in down town Denison, Texas. Prints will hopefully be available soon!

Marilyn

Ink & acrylic on canvas 20 x 30"

Dining Room Painting

Our dining room was in desperate need of a painting! I had found this interesting frame last year at a thrift store in Houston for $12! Preston and I decided a loosely painted landscape would be a good compliment to a kitchen that can be very busy at times. 

I created this 18 x 24 piece with acrylic paints on watercolor paper. 

Botanical Drawings :: Living Room

Preston and I finally decided on the style of artwork we wanted in our living room! After getting our sofas and coffee table in place, we decided on some simple botanical drawings to hang over the dark leather sofa. Our living room is getting pretty cozy, it will be a perfect place to watch movies and drink hot chocolate when the weather gets cooler! I also found a fiddle leaf ficus on sale at Home Depot that I just could not pass up, so it has joined the family.  

I created the botanical drawings with watercolor pencils and acrylic paint. They are 16 x 20 on watercolor paper.

 

Let's not forget Preston's awesome Elk Sketch hanging over the fireplace!! 

Poppies for Beth's Kitchen

My sweet mother-in-love needed some artwork for her beautiful kitchen that was remodeled last year! We found a painting in a store we liked so we used the same concept to create this piece to match her kitchen better!  I hope you enjoy your poppy painting Beth!

 

Below we have Beth with her painting. I also showed some beginning stages of the painting process and Nana Libby modeling with the piece! 

Turtle Sunrise :: Illustration

 I am so thankful for the opportunity presented to me earlier this year by my sweet and talented friend, Ann Higginbottom.  Ann had been dreaming about the creation of this book for years and I was so honored when she asked me illustrate Turtle Sunrise. Illustrating a book has been a dream of mine since I was a little girl! I love how God is constantly placing people like Ann in my life to help me glorify Him and take me on new adventures. I hope you enjoy Ann's story of three turtle brothers and their journey to the sea!

You can purchase Turtle Sunrise here!

Thank you for taking the time to view some of my work :)

North American Wildlife

 I was recently asked to create two paintings for a pediatric dentist's office in Texarkana, Texas. The theme was North American wildlife and I could not have been more excited to begin working on these paintings! When I was a little girl I was constantly drawing wild animals in my sketch books so getting to create them for children on such a large scale was really fun for me. Thank you Preston Spindle for taking these photos of me with my latest paintings and putting up with my big painting messes in our little home!

untitled-51.jpg

Acrylic on canvas

48" X 60"

untitled-68.jpg

Acrylic on canvas

48" X 60"

 

untitled-115.jpg
untitled-249.jpg
untitled-163.jpg

It was a little chilly outside during this photo shoot, so thankful to have a husband who entertains my interesting ideas :)