Category Archives: DIY

An unexamined life…

You may have deduced, from lack of posting, that I’ve kinda sorta lost control of my time again. Working two contract jobs, plus having kids and pets and husband and my own businesses is hard. At the beginning of the year, I created a planner for myself that I thought would help me keep everything organized. It did, until it didn’t.

The original planner is here. I really liked having the week-at-a-glance and each day having it’s own page, plus having a place to track what I was reading, and my art projects.

But when I took on the other jobs, I had a different to-do list for each of them, and doing my daily check-in was cumbersome as I tried to keep everything separate. I went from loving my reflection time to actively avoiding it.

This week a dear friend stayed with us for a few days, and her planner was very similar to the Passion Planner. The thing I didn’t like about it is that the to-do lists are for the whole week, rather than broken down by day. I want to make a dedicated effort to put goals to each day. But seeing hers, I saw how it could work, so I decided to revamp mine.

You can download the new version here.
Week LeftWeek Right








Basically, I took everything I liked from my planner and combined it with Mendy and Passion Planner’s. It feels less overwhelming already, I’ll let you know next week if it works for me.

Feel free to grab it and try it out yourself, tell me what you think. What parts of planners do you love, what do you always want changed?

Cooking w/ Kids

My kids love muffins. And donuts. I mean, who wouldn’t. Carbs and sugar, sugar and carbs…yum! I’ve been long substituting whole wheat flour for white, apple sauce for oil/butter. But the sugar solution has been elusive. I’ve used honey, but that’s still sugar. Today, though, inspired by the methods Katie uses in her recipes, I made fat free, sugar free, whole wheat banana bread muffins. Instead of the 1 1/2 cups of sugar (seriously!) that the recipe called for, I used 4 ground up dates and a squirt (probably about 15 drops) of liquid stevia. It worked. The muffins are wonderful, and I had a lot of fun making them with the kids.

Magnetic Paint?

Click photo to be taken to original

I’ve just learned that Magnetic Paint exists. Anyone ever used it? I guess it’s technically primer, so a lot of people paint over it with Chalkboard Paint. I love this idea for my kitchen. I want to do magnetic spice tins, I was going to just get a sheet of metal to hang them on, but this would work better. And I could make a weekly meal calendar, shopping list, etc., if the whole wall was a chalk board.

So??? Help me out! I guess it takes several coats, so it’s not super duper easy, but according to some reviews, it’s worth it. Yes? No?

This week on etsy: organization

Who wouldn’t want a bookcase like this:

Funky Entertainment Center from KidsCreationBeds

We’ve been spending a fair amount of time cleaning and organizing lately. I’ve made three trips to The Container Store without making a purchase. While I am a sucker for bins and drawers and anything to make things appear cleaner than they are, their stuff feels almost clinical to me. I want color and feeling!

Etsy is full of amazing organizational ideas. Check out some of my favorites in this week’s treasury. I’m especially excited about the meal planner hooks. That is absolutely genius.

This week on etsy: Steampunk

Do you know what “steampunk” is? I didn’t. According to Wikipedia:

Steampunk is a sub-genre of science fictionfantasyalternate history, and speculative fictionthat came into prominence during the 1980s and early 1990s.[1] Steampunk involves a setting where steam power is still widely used—usually Victorian era Britain or “Wild West“-era United States—that incorporates elements of either science fiction or fantasy. Works of steampunk often feature anachronistictechnology, or futuristic innovations as Victorians might have envisionedthem, based on a Victorian perspective on fashionculturearchitectural style, and art. This technology includes such fictional machines as those found in the works of H. G. Wells and Jules Verne, or the contemporary authors Philip PullmanScott Westerfeld and China Mieville.

I love the clockwork and gears that dominate the steampunk style. Etsy has an amazing steampunk community and this week, I’m highlighting some of my favorites.  Check it out! 


Pintersting this week

If you haven’t joined Pinterest yet, do it now. And just know that you are going to lose a good hour or two (or five) on the site each day.

While purusing the other night, I started seeing all of these images that seemed to go well with Home, the book I’m currently working on. So I grabbed them and started a new board. I realized that I can use Pinterest to create vision boards. (Yes, maybe I’m a little slow sometimes. Don’t judge.)

Here’s the thing: I love the idea of vision boards, but hate making them. The magazines I have on hand are either ones I don’t want to tear up or, if I want to tear them up, it’s because there is nothing left in them I want. Plus, vision boards are all about pictures. I get most of my pictures online. And I hate the mess of cutting, tearing, gluing, etc. This is perfect for me! So I started grabbing pictures for my book. I’ve only done Ashley, but I’d like to do one for each of the main characters and one for the book as a whole.

Then, this morning, I was looking at my Google Reader and my mentor talked about this very thing. And she quite literally wrote the book on vision boarding your novel.

This got me thinking…could I maybe possibly make a vision board for me too? Gasp! I might actually enjoy this.

*The link back for the photo doesn’t work. If it’s yours, please email me at amandamichellemoon dot com and I’d be happy to give you credit and a back link!


Creatively Fit

Happy almost New Year!  I’m really excited about 2012- there are so many awesome changes happening in my life, and they mostly stem from this one huge change that I made.  I’m creating full time.

One of the things that helped propel me to make this leap and begin a profession that I should have had all along was my work with Whitney Ferre and Creatively Fit.  Creatively Fit is built on the premise that our creative muscles need and deserved to be exercised as much as our analytic ones: our right and left brains should balance each other.  Our society is so rigidly focused on bottom line and efficiencies we are loosing the ability to be creative.  It makes sense when you think about it.  And when you start to practice exercising your right brain and creativity….wow.  You will be amazed.

Whitney is kicking off 2012 with The Sprit Project.  I highly recommend you check it out. We’ve already been “talking” in the Facebook group and the people that are involved are incredible.  Don’t be fooled either- this isn’t just for painters or “Artists.”  It’s for everyone.  

A Creative Thanksgiving

I woke up this morning, made some stuffing and a turkey.  Then it cooked for three and a half hours.

Thanksgiving Turkey 2011

While it was cooking I got so caught up in the Macy’s Parade and working on wire wrapping that I forgot all about the potatoes, rolls and green beans.  Chris took the kids to the playground while I threw them all together.  While they were cooking, I made this:

The poem is from an amazing prayer book Morning and Evening by Johann Habermann that you can get for free here or here.

We ate a wonderful meal that I thought about taking pictures of only after it was gone.  Everyone laid down for a nap, and I worked on finishing the necklaces I started in the morning.  After a quick trip to Michael’s for an amazing easel, we all ate chex mix and popcorn while watching Charlie Brown’s Thanksgiving.

After everyone went to bed, I decided to work on a few more necklaces.  Here’s everything I made today:

Necklaces I made on Thanksgiving Day

They will be in my Etsy shop soon, and available on Cyber Monday!

(I also started a painting tonight, but all I did was paint a canvas black, so I don’t have a picture of that.  I’ll post it when it’s done.  I do love my new easel!)