BE one of the thousand.

Exciting things are happening friends! Remember my prayer that God would completely BLOW MY MIND in how he would provide for us? Well, he has NOT been slow in answering that request! He has been so extremely faithful to provide exactly what we needed exactly when we needed it and some even before and we can’t wait to see how he will provide for us as we move forward. So what’s so exciting (aside from God’s awesome provision) you ask? This PUZZLE!

asay adoption puzzle-5It is a ONE THOUSAND piece puzzle, of which we are ‘selling’ the pieces for $10/each to raise funds for our adoption journey. I am so looking forward to having you guys write your names (or I’ll write it for you) :) on the back of your very own piece as you become a piece of our puzzle! Some have already been added – see below!

asay adoption puzzle-1

I found this fundraising idea on another adoption blog I was perusing the other day and thought it would be a fantastic way to let even more people (1000 to be exact) be a part of bringing home our sweets. Ten dollars is like…2 mochas. Or ONE trip to the pool for me and the kids! (we’ll probably play in the backyard with the hose from now on).

asay adoption puzzle-2

So stop what you’re doing, CLICK HERE, give ten little dollars, and BE one of the thousand! Make sure you include your name (or the name you’d like to have written on your puzzle piece) and don’t forget your kids! They will want to have their name on their very own puzzle piece, most likely, just sayin’.

asay adoption puzzle-61This is what the finished puzzle will be. I designed it and ordered it through this sweet etsy shop. But we can’t put it together until each and every piece has been purchased and has a name on the back! Help us put our puzzle together, purchase a piece – or 3, and watch as God provides through all of you! Get excited – big things are happening through all of you!

adoption puzzle

You can also purchase puzzles pieces from me or our family members in Des Moines, Omaha, and Kearney, NE areas in person as well – just stop by or send a message and we will connect.

Another way to be one of the thousand is to send a check to:

Cornerstone Church
56829 US Highway 30
Ames, IA 50010

Make sure you write ‘Asay Adoption: puzzle’ in the memo line!


heart stamped valentines!

LL and I seem to share a love of crafting, so to enjoy a morning together during W’s nap and bless some certain family members with a fun handmade valentine, LL put daddy’s old undershirt her paint shirt on and went to town making heart stamped cards!

I had made this heart stamp from a used toilet paper roll last month and have been very much looking forward to watching LL use it.

LL_22mo Valentine making 2013-2While I was getting the paint ready, LL became a bit anxious and slurring her words said something that probably meant, ‘paint now? please paint now mommy? pleeeease?!’ im ready

So we began as soon as I had the paint ready and showed her how to use her new stamp.

startAnd then I got smart and put some newspaper down. It was (usually always is) a good idea because after a couple of minutes she decided that other things were fun to stamp also.

got smartThen I gave her this love birdie stamp to try. She got super excited and may have gone overboard with the birds.

LL_22mo Valentine making 2013-9That’s okay. We like birdies.

LL_22mo Valentine making 2013-10It wouldn’t be an LL craft experience without acknowledging (and maybe whining a little) about having dirty hands. She’s so proper. (It’s good to know the context behind the photo below. Without it, this could look not so pretty!)LL_22mo Valentine making 2013-11Needless to say, we both seemed to have had lots of happy feelings while using our handmade heart stamp and even had a pretty decent yield! (I may have ‘helped’ toward the end when attention spans began to wane…)

LL_22mo Valentine making 2013-12Here’s to a joyful Thursday February 14 everyone! Heart stamped cards are headed your way grandpas and grandmas!

happy vday







This past Saturday we celebrated Linley’s first year of life with family here at the Asayplacey, and this is how it went down:

The entry welcome banner: The entry welcome mini bannerThis is the wall of photo streamers we made to celebrate in-utero through 11 months – ‘Celebrating Linley Louise’ (two nails, twine, linen, tape, photos, card stock, markers, hole punches, needle and thread). It’s difficult to see, but the birdie in the top left was a part of her shower decor before she was born, and the little red sparkly hand print on the left about 5 photos down was made for her when she was just one month old: LL’s ‘ONE’ cake:

She thought it was the sweetest thing when we lit the candle and everyone began singing to her:I made her mini cupcakes of the same cake with a different frosting. I made whipped cream and attempted to dye it with blube juice (juice from heated frozen blueberries). It was working, but it was last minute and I didn’t make enough juice so it was more of a light purply grey. She didn’t know what she was supposed to do at first…So she said, ‘please?!’ and exploredI wasn’t prepared with a bib, so we took the cardigan off because with nearly each bite she kept signing, ‘please’, smearing cake and cream all over her chest.

*side note: thank you Lindsey Nims of Babble4Baby for making us her sweet bow! She has far more than what is currently listed on the website and makes everything custom!
Then we cleaned up sweet messy hands, everyone else had cake, and LL played with tissue paper and cards (i.e. opened birthday gifts)reading her cards:I loved her expression when holding up her new swim halter: Whenever I would take a drink from my water bottle, LL would go crazy, so for her day, she received her very own Camelbak bottle:Another please?yeah! she got the paper off:Score!

And what’s opening gifts if you can’t get some help from a couple of cousins:

And then we partied and charlared until the storm (tornados and strong winds came that night!) was closing in and family had to head home.

LL having fun playing with Great Gram Joyce’s purse (she likes mastering zippers):This is how you clap your hands, Grandpa:Miss Cori piling all available animals on LL’s lap:Hey Uncle Z:This was so sweet. I looked over, and LL was sitting on cousin Mag’s lap hangin out: Buddies
mmm fruit and cheese – thanks Grandma A and Great Gram Elaine Everyone seemed to really enjoy the balloons: Including us after everyone left!We’ll end with the best and most recent family photo we have to date (pay no mind to the finger prints). Thanks everyone for helping to celebrate LL’s birthday with us! She DEFINITELY had a great time with a full house. 

Christmas Crafting

Happy Christmas everyone! It’s crazy to have Christmas day here and gone already and twenty-twelve is just days away! But thank God for giving us all a reason to celebrate, give gifts, and enjoy family!

Both of my sisters-in-law and I decided to exchange homemade items, which I really enjoyed making!

I first made hand soap using THIS recipe that I found on Pinterest. It was super super easy and inexpensive to make.

My friend and neighbor, Sarah, helped.

We started by grating a bar of choice soap; I chose a green tea lemon scented soap that I found at World Market.




We then placed the slivers of soap in a pot of 1 gallon (or 4 quarts) of water and 2 tbls pure glycerin to dissolve.


After the soap was completely dissolved I just waited a number of hours for it to thicken. When I went back to it, this is what I found:


Kinda goopy – so I added some water and used a hand mixer to whip it up a bit (thanks Sarah! Maybe someday I’ll invest in a hand mixer – until then, it’s my workout.) It was then ready to be put into containers. (the full recipe and instructions for this project can be found HERE.)

I procrastinated for quite some time to find a dispenser I wanted to use. Hobby Lobby had empty clear plastic bottles with pump attached, but they were about $2.50/ea. and even with a 40% off coupon, I wanted to use something more substantial; glass preferably. So I decided to use mason jars, which I found at our local Hy-Vee. (thankfully a ‘Ball’ plant is in Ames so canning jars are readily available!)

Now the trick was finding individually sold pumps! Nearly every website I found required a minimum of 100 pumps be purchased. The recipe makes a lot of soap, but not quite that much. I finally found a website called where i was able to order the number of pumps needed and they were here just in time for assembly!

The next trick was figuring out how to put a pump sized hole in the top if the jar. Some things are better delegated to other people who have skills that you do not YET have. In this case (and in most cases), Tad. :) He knew just what to do and had all the lids drilled in no time.

This is the step drill bit he used and the just right sized hole it created:


Because the pumps we purchased didn’t raise very high off the surface of the lid, we drilled the hole near the edge so fingers could actually fit under the pump. Tad thought we could have found a piece of acrylic to raise the pump slightly, but we were running out of time, and made do.

I originally made an attempt to Super Glue the pumps to the lids, but it very unfortunately did not work well at all! So I went with good ole mod podge. (Again, Tad with his good ideas said I should have used an epoxy, but again, I was out of time and the mod podge was doing the trick.)

This is the final product!


I enjoy crafting fun easy inexpensive gifts!

The second project was specifically for Tad’s sister. I was checking out her pinterest boards when I found this ‘letter wreath’ idea (originally from this Etsy seller) and made a go of it.

I purchased two compact cardboard letters from hobby lobby and glued them together before beginning to wrap the many (MANY) layers of twine. I stared by hot gluing pieces to the ends to avoid any extra complicated wrapping.


The angles and curve of the ‘G’ were the trickiest and required the occasional hot gluing to keep things in place, but over all it was a mindless task I enjoyed doing while listening, quietly (the OCS -office/craftroom/studio- is just across the hall from a napping babe!) to some holiday tunes.


Now it was time for some simple and sweet embellishments. I had a couple of extra felt flowers from the winter wreath I had made earlier in the month:

And I thought, why waste?! These are perfect! So I glued them down and pinned a ribbon on the back for hanging and the letter wreath was complete. Easy!


And lastly, I love a good theme when wrapping! I don’t have images from last Christmas, but all the packages were inspired by THIS. This year we went with simple black and white with a spritz of purple here and there. I had originally wanted to do everything stripes (my latest fetish), however, I ran into these two papers and called it done.


That’s all of the Asayplacey Christmas crafting for now. Photos of the celebration up next! … Well, maybe a post or two about how LL jumped from three to FIVE toofers over night!

bags + skirts

First off I’d like to take a look at our dining table and remember why we designated one of our four bedrooms to be an office-study-craftroom. Maybe someday we’ll have things situated enough to where I can sew and leave my mess there instead:

Above you’ll find everything from once beautiful flowers from Mr. Owen Scott, to deodorant and the ironing board (the one and only mini).

For a while I had been wanting to make ‘on-the-go’ changing bags to take with us in whichever purse I had that day as a way to avoid schlepping a diaper bag everywhere we went. So finally I made the necessary purchases and had a go at it. I purchased 3/8 yard of fabric per print and reaped 2 bags from each. With each bag I used about 2 1/4 ft of woven cord.

They are simple draw-string bags, which I didn’t use a pattern for, but they turned out fairly well and are the perfect size!

Contents here include:

  • Changing pad
  • Diaper
  • Wipes
  • Extra onsie
  • Cream

Since I was in love with the mustard print and was already on a roll, I decided to fully satisfy my sewing craving and make Linley a sweet little skirt. I didn’t have a pattern for this either (who am I kidding – I hardly ever use a pattern… or recipe!) but I thought, surely I can make this work. So I brainstormed various designs and the steps needed to complete the task. I measured based off of a skirt that Little Lady already had and concluded that I had juuust enough fabric to make it work. So I made the skirt, and it turned out great! — but unfortunately I concluded incorrectly with my measurements, and with the gathers, there was no way Linley Louise would ever be wearing this skirt. sigh.

This is the front. I was planning on putting about an inch hem with the fabric to the right, but decided to just turn it under and leave it as is.

and the back. I used the snaps from an old onsie and used them as closures. They were a great alternative to purchasing and applying new snaps!

Even though it was too small for our little lady, there was another little lady coming to our house the very next day for a photo shoot who I thought may be able to squeeze in. And that she did – juuuust squeezed in.

I plan on having a second, third, and fourth attempt at making little lady clothes, so no reason to be discouraged quite yet! Next time, though, we’ll leave EXTRA wiggle room for the growin’ girl!