birthdays and diy hugs and kisses

Happy Birthday Mia!!

Today is the day, and you better believe we are celebrating big! When I asked her what she'd love to do, she said she'd be happy if I would come over and help her work on some slipcovers, go get a massage, and enjoy lunch at one of our favorite spots.  Didn't take long to agree to that kind of fun!  

I got another thrill when her adoring husband called and asked if I could stay for dinner because he is cooking up a feast to celebrate his beloved.  I had to let him in on the little detail that I had already been invited to spend the night......  Surprise!  When he told me what the menu was, I started salivating instantly.  Needless to say, I can't wait for tonight.

So, let me take a moment to let you know, in case you're new around here, just how amazing my best friend is.  I know you don't have ALL day to read this post, so this is the condensed version.  Mia is one-of-a-kind.  I think any one who knows her would have to agree.  Even though she is beautiful and oozing with talent, she is one of the most humble and down to earth people I know.  She is beyond hilarious, and has said some of the funniest things I've ever heard in my life.  In fact, whenever my mother-in-law is visiting and Mia stops by, she races to put her hearing aids in, so as to not miss a single word she says!   I have laughed myself right into the bathroom on thousands of occasions.  And been a little too late a few times, too.

She serves her friends, neighbors, church, and perfect strangers with a willing heart.  She is always taking a meal, hosting a party, setting up for a wedding, designing announcements, sewing a window treatment, or whipping treats up for the 20 teenagers who have unexpectedly dropped by.  And she always says the same thing, "It was so much fun!"

Mia has been by my side over the past twelve years, through the good, the bad, and the ugly, and there have been plenty of all three!  We have laughed until we've lost our voices, cried boatloads of tears together, traveled all over the countryside, been in business(es) together, and drug our families through all sorts of crazy shenanigans.  We have had more adventures (and misadventures) than a couple of girls should ever be lucky enough to experience together.  My life has been richly blessed to have found a friendship as effortless and lasting as this one.  I love her with all my heart.  Happy Birthday, to my dear Best Friend!

And.....there was another birthday girl this week.  My very own 18 year old daughter!  I just can't even begin to imagine where the years have gone.  We have been through some rough and uncertain times together, and she has always been right there, holding my hand and assuring me that things would work out.  She is strong and brave, courageous and kind.  Her character is unshakeable and I am so proud she's mine.  She has grown into a beautiful young woman, and I can see a very bright future spanning out before her.  She will do amazing things in her life because she knows who she is.  I love this girl.  I am so lucky to be her Mom.

All the love circulating around this week got me motivated to complete a quick project for my front door.  I would have hung it on the exterior of the door, but because of the numbers I installed, it just wasn't going to work.  See the door transformation {here}.

So I decided to do something a little bit different and love up the inside of the front door.  I bought the massive, paper mache letters from JoAnns (they were $10 each) and spray painted them gold one frigid night at midnight.  (did you know it's been in the low 20's at night around here?)  I think the nozzle might have slightly malfunctioned because of the cold weather since I've never had this happen before!

But no matter, I got the job done!  The next day, I taped off some stripes with masking tape and painted them light pink.

I used two coats of paint, then carefully peeled the tape off.  It didn't damage the gold spray paint at all.  I buried myself in my trim drawer, and came up with a few different layers I glued together with a low-temp glue gun.  I also used the glue gun to attach it to the back of the letters, and that was it.  I tied it up and called it Valentine's Day Hugs and Kisses!

Remember when the entry used to look like this?

We added a pattern to the top half of the windows with contact paper:

And cut a door down to add wood panels to the bottom half, both explained {here}.

Hopefully, I've inspired you in some small way today since that's always the goal!  Some projects are easy, some are a little more difficult, but mostly they just start with a little bit of inspiration and get carried through with a lot of determination.  And look at me..... I have a holiday project done a month in advance.  This is some sort of record!  Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm probably getting a massage right now.



  1. All the best to the birthday girls!! Wishing you a fabulous year ahead!
    ~ J in Mesa

  2. What a wonderful and heartfelt tribute to sisterhood. I love you both so much, I think my heart oozes creme fresh every time I set eyes on you! I can't wait to see what the year has in store for both of you... and I KNOW this evening is going to be wonderful and "so much fun"! XOXO

  3. Happy Birthday, Mia! Jim and I still talk about our trip to shop with you and Jilly. You both are amazing! Best wishes for the year to come. Mary

  4. Jilly & Mia is a perfect example of "the whole is greater than the sum of its parts". And I have been blessed by it for sure! Love you both. And tell darling Punky that she grew up way too fast - but oh so good, makes me excited for whats in store for my lovely ladies too.

  5. Here's wishing Mia and Jaci a very happy day filled with love and laughter and birthday wishes that come true! Mia, remembering your incredible(3_th, I'll keep the number to myself!) birthday celebration with guest George Dyer to serenade you, the special b-day girl! Hope this year brought as many unforgettable moments.

  6. Happy Birthday Mia! Jilly, your tribute to her made me cry!

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Mia & Jilly

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