Easter Cross for the Front Door

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It’s finally spring here in Mississippi, and we’ve gone straight from snow and ice to tulips and perfect temps. With Easter around the corner, our naked front doors desperately need a fresh look for spring. Oxford has zero craft stores (or a Target! I know, how do we survive?) to browse for ideas, so I’m constantly on the lookout for inexpensive online decor and supplies. In my recent search, I found that Trendy Tree sells these fabulous moss-covered grapevine crosses in addition to many other wreath bases for nearly every occasion! The prices can’t be beat.

These crosses would be beautiful dressed up with spring florals and ribbon, but I decided to create a simple Easter front door this year. I’m even tempted to hang one over my dining room mirror for Easter lunch.

All you need is the grapevine cross, florist’s wire, wire cutters, ribbon and fishing line for hanging.

The cross comes in two pieces.
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Easily secure the two pieces with florist’s wire. I wrapped it a few times diagonally, going both directions, as shown below. Snip the excess wire once the cross is secure.
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Using this bow tutorial from On Sutton Place, I tied a pretty bow with spring ribbon and hot glued it to the very top of the cross.
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Simple and exactly what I was looking for to welcome our guests over the next several weeks leading up to Easter.
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22 Wreath Ideas for Every Occasion

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Wreaths, wreaths, and more wreaths! If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you know my affection for seasonal goodies for the front door! Recently, I had the opportunity to collaborate with Hometalk to curate a collection of wreath ideas for every occasion! Folks have made wreaths out of just about everything, and I was amazed at the creativity and unique twists on traditional wreaths! The curated board includes the full list of wreaths and their individual supplies, tutorials, and additional photos!

While most of the wreaths I chose to showcase are occasion-specific, there are a few that certainly can be made and displayed year round!

If you are not familiar with Hometalk, it is a site dedicated to all things home decor and gardening.  You can easily browse through endless ideas and be inspired by some seriously talented folks!  Many of the Before/After photos will blow you away and inspire you to create! One of the best features of Hometalk is that you do not have to be a blogger to submit your own ideas and photos, so be sure to check it out!

Head on over to the Wreath Board to get some wreath ideas!
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Tay Morgan Easter Egg Giveaway

I love Easter.  Everything about it.  The colors, the food, the traditions, the promise of new life!

One of our family’s favorite Easter traditions is collecting Tay Morgan Designs personalized wooden eggs.  You may recognize her trademark design as these adorable keepsakes have quickly become a Mississippi Easter tradition.  Tay is giving away one of her eggs here at the blog this week!  The winner can choose between these two designs, and Tay will personalize the egg and ship it straight to your home!

1) Snuggle Bunny and Bee or 2) Hearts with Bible Verse
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A few of our favorites…

Ballerina
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Pine Cove Family Camp egg!

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Tay’s eggs are so fun display in a fishbowl in the middle of your kitchen table or coffee table.  Our kids love to peek through to find their special eggs every year.

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This year I changed it up a bit and put a few in this wooden box and love the sweetness it brings to my kitchen hutch!

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So…I’d love to give away one of Tay’s eggs to you!  Entering to win is super simple!

Just one requirement to enter and you will receive two entries for it…

“Like” Tay Morgan Designs and Amanda Jane Brown on Facebook and simply leave me a comment here at the blog saying you did (or already do!).

For an extra TWO entries, share this post on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and let me know you did.

Giveaway ends next Tuesday, April 8th, at noon.

Start your Tay Morgan Designs Easter egg tradition this Easter!  You can order your school logos, sports or other activities, favorite camp, or other design.  Visit Tay’s Facebook page to see her work!

Happy Easter!

Blessings, grace, and peace to you this Easter!
Easter Kids 2013Perhaps one of these days we’ll get an entire-family picture on Easter…or any other time.  It’s a once-in-a-blue-moon thing, so Happy Easter from my kiddos!

Love,
Amanda

Simple Easter Mantel

Simple Easter Mantel

In an effort to create a simple Easter mantel, I went shopping in my own closets.  My goal was to represent the true spirit of Easter.  New life.  New beginnings.

The DIY Chalkboard that I use for nearly every holiday with a paraphrased version of Revelation 21:5 was the inspiration and starting point for the mantel.   Continuing with simple, I kept everything brown and white like the chalkboard.   Two flowering stems from Michael’s are tucked into a white pitcher that was a wedding gift.

Simple Easter Mantel 2

For interest, I drew the paraphrased verse onto the chalkboard using two fonts, Footlight MT Light and Blackjack Regular, available in Word.

Simple Easter Mantel 1

Sometimes the simplest looks are the best, and I love how this turned out.

What do you have in your closets or attic already that you can pull together for a simple Easter setting?  I bet more than you think!

Simple Easter Mantel 3

If you don’t have a chalkboard, be sure to hop over to the DIY Chalkboard Tutorial to see how simple it is to make your own.  Again, I used an old frame I already had, and for just a few dollars, created this versatile board that can be used for any holiday or decorating all year long!

Simple Easter Mantel  As we approach Easter, I pray you know the simple, yet profound truth of Jesus’s death and resurrection and its transforming power in our lives.

Thankful that He makes all things new

Linking to:

High Heels and Grills, Mom on Timeout, I Gotta Create, 52 Mantels, Design, Dining, and Diapers, Tatertots and Jello, Six Sisters Stuff, Mop It Up Monday, Home Stories A2Z, Project Inspire(d) Linky Party, One Artsy Mama, Feathered Nest Friday, Catch as Catch Can

Easter Meal Traditions-Petit Jean Ham Giveaway

Petit Jean Meats Smoked Ham

Can you believe Easter is in less than three weeks?  It has totally snuck up on me this year.  Easter is, by far, my favorite holiday.  No fuss, no frills.  It’s usually pretty outside, spring is in full force, and the hope of new life revives my usually-weary winter soul.

I adore the Easter tradition of delicious food we enjoy every year!  My grandmother set the most beautiful Easter table and prepared a meal each year that rivaled Martha Stewart.  Now that I’m the “mama,” and folks come to my table for Easter, I draw from her legacy and traditions to create our menu each year.  Decades later, ham is still the star of the show, and I wouldn’t serve any but a Petit Jean Meats ham!!  We discovered Petit Jean Meats, an Arkansas-based, family-owned company, after we relocated to Arkansas years ago.

While our menu does change slightly from year-to-year, here are a few favorites that make regular appearances!

Deviled Eggs.  Everyone I know has “their” way of preparing Deviled Eggs, but I love this traditional, simple, Southern version.  You can tweak the flavors to your liking.  People love Deviled Eggs, and our mothers and grandmothers made them far more often than we do today.  Your family and friends will kiss you for making these:)

Traditional Deviled Eggs

Another favorite for Easter…or any holiday, really…is Green Bean Bundles!

Bacon-Wrapped Green Beans

These green beans look fancy but are a cinch to make…they just need a few extra minutes of your time.  With a brown sugar/butter glaze, these green beans won’t be around long.

And Sour Cream Bisquick Biscuits.  These are super easy with just a few ingredients and take just minutes to make.  {These are terrific for any weeknight meal or special occasion!}

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So here’s the best part for you today…I am giving away a 1/2 Smoked Spiral Sliced Ham ($60 value) to one of you this week!  Just follow the simple instructions below to enter to win!  The ham will be shipped directly to your front door and you can freeze until ready to eat.  Promises that it will be the best ham you’ve ever eaten:)

Petit Jean Meats Smoked Ham

To enter the giveaway:

Mandatory:

1.  Leave a comment telling us about a favorite Easter menu item. (Be sure to leave your name if you don’t have a blog).

2.  Enter your email HERE to receive occasional emails from Petit Jean Meats.

Optional additional entries:

1. Share this giveaway on Facebook or Twitter.

2.  Follow Amanda Jane Brown on Facebook, Twitter, or Subscribe by Email and let me know you did (or do)!

Giveaway ends next Thursday, March 21, at noon.

Disclaimer:  I received a Petit Jean Meats 1/2 Spiral Smoked Ham and another to give away.  As a member of Petit Jean’s Blue Diamond Club, I get to sample their delicious products and share them with you!  Subscribe to Amanda Jane Brown in the right sidebar so you won’t miss a future giveaway!

Easter Egg Door Hanger

Easter Door Hanger Main

Easter has snuck up on me this year, not to mention our personal lives have been quite full and not without stress lately.  I’ve had these sweet not-so-little little eggs finished for a few weeks, but the Shamrocks needed some time on the door, life happened, and now the eggs are finally making their debut!

 Let’s just say that my hubby and baby girl were heard uttering words like Pterodactyl and “whoa, Mommy!”  before the final version hit the doors.  Dinosaur eggs are definitely not the look I was going for.  But I really like how they (eventually) turned out.

I started with a piece of 20″x30″ faux “linen” foam board from Hobby Lobby.  You can see in the photo below the detail of the design.  Looks like linen, but is smooth like regular foam board.

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Forgive me, I do not have photos of the tracing and cutting out of the egg, because the original measurements I had drawn out to show you delivered the eggs that resembled those of the pterodactyl, so basically, using the electric knife (like the one you use to carve the turkey), I kept shaving off an inch or so all the way around the egg until it reached a visually-acceptable and non-threatening size.  No really, the first versions were like the attack of the giant eggs.

Then, using this same chevron template that I used on the Chevron Valentine’s Hearts, I traced out the chevron pattern onto the foam board.

Easter Egg Door Hanger

Then, I painted 2 connected sections of the chevron pattern at a time in order to achieve larger stripes.  To paint thinner stripes, simply paint every other one.

To create a hanger, I poked a hole in the top of the egg and threaded a piece of jute through and tied it off to create a hanger.

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I added a burlap bow and hot-glued a simple raffia bow to the front.  You can either hot glue the entire bow to the top of the egg, or like I did, tie the jute hanger around the bow to secure.

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Completed, trimmed-down Chevron Eggs!

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Easter Egg Door Hanger

Supplies Needed:

Foam board (20″x30″)

Electric knife or Exacto knife

pencil

Chevron Template

Craft paint (Americana Whispering Turquoise shown)

Paintbrush or foam brush

Awl or Phillips head screwdriver (to make hole for hanging)

Jute/Burlap ribbon/Raffia for creating hanger

Linking to:

I Gotta Create, Weekend Bloggy Reading, Home Stories A2Z, High Heels and Grills, Mom on Timeout, I Gotta Create, 52 Mantels, Design, Dining and Diapers, One Artsy Mama, Tatertots and Jello, Six Sisters Stuff, Mop It Up Monday, A Blossoming Life, Project Inspire(d) Linky Party

Tay Morgan Designs Easter Egg Giveaway!

Snuggle Bunnies Tay Morgan Designs

March is finally here, which usually means warmer weather has arrived, but it is still bitterly cold here in Arkansas!  Despite snow flurries in this week’s forecast, I am kicking off spring with a giveaway from Tay Morgan Designs!

Tay Morgan is from my hometown of Jackson, Mississippi, and paints precious keepsake wooden Easter eggs.  As you can see below, each egg is completely customizable with a name, school, special occasions, hobbies, and more!

Tay Morgan Easter Eggs

One of my personal favorites below…”Snuggle Bunnies!”

Snuggle Bunnies Tay Morgan Designs

Names and Bible Verses

Tay Eggs Bible Verse

Sorority eggs!

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Here are a few of our personal eggs from over the years…

Tay Morgan Eggs Kids…and our Easter egg display with several of Tay’s wooden eggs tucked in!

Tay Morgan Eggs Bowl

The giveaway is for one wooden egg with your choice of design and personalization!  Click HERE to see all the egg designs in Tay’s online shop.

To enter the giveaway:

1.  Required-Leave a comment stating which design you would choose!  If you do not have a blog, be SURE to leave your name and email address so I can contact you!  (You can let me know of additional entries in this comment, as well!)

2.  Optional additional entryLike Tay Morgan Designs on Facebook

3.  Optional additional entry-Follow Amanda Jane Brown in some way…Facebook, Twitter, Email Subscription, or Pinterest!

4.  Optional additional entry-Share this giveaway on Facebook or Twitter!

 Giveaway ends next Friday, March 8 at noon.  Thank you for entering!