Everything is AWESOME!

Everything-is-Awesome!If you and your family went to see The LEGO Movie then you probably walked out of the theatre exclaiming “Everything is AWESOME!” just like we did! Even now, weeks later, you can periodically hear one of us shouting from another part of the house, “Everything is AWESOME!” particularly when things ARE NOT awesome.

Our love for this new saying prompted me to create this printable. You can download it for your office, kid’s rooms, wherever you may need a little more AWESOME!

Download your AWESOME pdf here!


Fall Pumpkin Topiary

Let me just come right out and say, I’m not ready for Fall. Typically I save my Fall decorations until October when the weather really starts to change in Virginia. But, I keep seeing Fall decor all over the web, and it is unusually cool here in Virginia. So, here’s an easy to make, reusable Fall project that you can knock out in a few hours.

Easy to make, reusable Fall pumpkin topiary.

Easy to make, reusable Fall pumpkin topiary.


This project makes two topiaries. For this project you will need:

  • 6 foam pumpkins (I call them Funkins!) in three sizes per topiary (small, medium, and large)
  • 2 wooden dowels – dowels should measure long enough to stick into your pot and through all three funkins, you may need to cut them down to size
  • 2 pots – I like the look of urns, these were cheap plastic ones from Tuesday Morning
  • 2 lengths of grapevine garland
  • Ribbon or bow for the tops
  • Rocks for the bottom of your pots if they are lightweight
  • Oasis foam or something similar to stick your dowel in your pot with
  • Glue gun and glue
  • Long hat pins

My foam pumpkins came with holes already cut in the bottoms. If your funkins did not, use a knife to cut holes into the bottoms of the funkins so they stack on top of one another fairly well and sit straight. You may need to shave the foam down a bit for a nice fit. It doesn’t have to be tight, but you don’t want it to look like there is space between the funkins.

Trim funkins

After all your funkins are trimmed, dry fit them on the dowel. Dry fit the dowel in your pot. Mark the dowel if it needs to be trimmed and cut it down as necessary.

Once you are happy with the way the funkins will fit into the pot, it’s time to assemble the topiary for real. If your pot, like mine, doesn’t have drainage, you might want to use a drill to cut a small drain hole in the bottom. If the pot is lightweight, you may want to fill the bottom with rocks to help stabilize it.

Cut the oasis cubes as needed to fill your pot. Place the oasis in the bottom of the pot. It should fit snugly. You can also secure the cubes with hot glue.

Fill your pot with oasis.

Use hot glue on the end of the dowel that will be in the top of the fukin stack. Squeeze a generous glob of glue onto the dowel and quickly stuff it into the top funkin. Hold it there until the glue has adhered to the funkin.

Add a glob of glue

Hold it in the top funkin until the glue sets

Slide the rest of the funkins onto the dowel and insert the dowel into the oasis.

Stack your funk ins

You can start to see that you have lots of options for decorating your funkins. You could use a white funkin with a spooky silhouette or your initial on it. You could spell out B-O-O if you want a Halloween topiary. You could also stuff in some sheet moss or fall leaves between the pot and bottom funkin.  I wanted my topiary to last from September to November, so I chose to wrap it with grapevine and a bow.

Grapevine comes in rolls at your local craft store. I needed one roll per topiary, but you might want yours more loosely wrapped and can get by with less. Buy two, you can always return one!

Wrap the grapevine around your topiary until it looks right. You may need to secure your grapevine in the back with some long straight pins if it doesn’t seem secure. You can push pins straight into the funkin.

Grapevine comes in rolls

Add the grapevine

I added bows at the top with long tails that draped down over the topiary. You may choose to use bows or something else!

Completed pumpkin topiaries

You can see how I added some corn stalks and mums in the background on my front steps. As the season changes from Fall to Halloween to Thanksgiving, you can change the decor behind it to compliment your topiaries. And, best of all, since you use funkins, there’s no waste or rotting pumpkins to deal with! Just store your topiary til next year and use the pots for more seasonal decor. Since mine are plastic, they can stay out almost all winter with no worry of them getting damaged.

Fall front porch

Here’s another shot showing things moved around a bit. I added a seasonal wreath to the door, changed out and moved the flag, added a cool, blue pumpkin, and the mums finally started to bloom. Having the trees conveniently change color and scatter their leaves in the yard helps too!

Here are links to some other great fall pumpkin topiaries. Hope you’ll make one of your own and share it!

Fall topiary with monogram

How to make a fall topiary from Denise in Bloom

Pumpkin topiaries by Southern Charm

Gratitude Garland

Thanks for joining me on the new blog! I feel like Thanksgiving gets the short end of the holiday stick, but in our house gratitude is important. November is the perfect month to practice being grateful and this easy craft will help you and the kids understand what that means. It only takes a few minutes of prep for you to make an adorable garland which the kids can assemble on Thanksgiving Eve!

Find a printable leaf pattern like this one online. Or, you may already have one in a coloring book at home. I traced some large leaf cookie cutters we had onto a sheet of white paper. You can also just snag some real leaves from the yard and trace those. The shapes should be simple to trace and easy to cut out because you’ll need lots!

Once you have your shapes traced on a paper, figure out about how many leaves you’ll need, one per family member per day. Maybe a few extras for guests or mistakes. Now run your fall colored paper through the printer to copy the leaves onto colored paper. If you’re tracing and using construction paper, you can just trace each leaf onto the paper. Bigger kids can help! Now cut out the leaves. We placed them in a basket next to the dinner table.

Each night while we ate dinner and talked about our day, we would tell one thing we were thankful for and write that on the leaf. Completed leaves went back into the basket.

On Thanksgiving Eve (as we call it!) we cut brown pipe cleaners in half. Glue these on the backs of the leafs, leaving about half of the pipe cleaner hanging off the leaf. This will be the part you use to attach the leaf to the garland.

Leave the leaves out to dry! Cut a length of twine, jute, raffia, whatever, to the length of the garland. If you have lots of leaves, you’ll need more string! If you want the garland to look full, shorten the length of the string.

Using the pipe cleaner “tail” affix the leaves to the string by curling the pipe cleaner around the string. Make it snug. Hang in the dining room or wherever your Thanksgiving festivities occur!

You could easily add to this each year. It’s fun to look back and see what your family was thankful for the previous year!

On another note, if you followed me from my previous blog, thanks! Please be patient as I get it up and looking pretty! I’m hoping to add a greater variety of content, but the cooking and humor will still abound! I’m hoping I’ll also be able to be a bit more transparent and add some “life” to the blog as well. Hopefully you’ll enjoy those posts, too! live•rinse•repeat is kind of how I find myself these days. I am fortunate to be saved by Jesus and feel like I get another chance everyday to wash off the mistakes of yesterday and begin again fresh. We all make mistakes, we can all recover from them. I’m willing to share mine with you. I hope you’ll feel welcome to comment, and, just maybe, share some of your do-overs!

I’m grateful to have you as a reader! What are you grateful for?

Happy November!

Follow me on Twitter too! I’m linking up to the36thavenuehappyhourprojects and notjustahousewife.

%d bloggers like this: