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Wayfair Homemakers

Photo Transfer Journals: Endless Summer Projects

This post is sponsored by Bing.

It's always awesome to end with a grand finale, right? Well, Miss Amy of This Heart of Mine has pulled it out for us! Today brings us to the close of our Endless Summer Projects series.

I'm a journal hoarder...err, I mean, I appreciate a beautiful journal or sketchbook. Amy has this great process for showing us how to transfer your photographs to journal covers. The final result is spectacular! What a great gift these would make.

These makers are so good at what they do, and I've been truly blessed to work alongside them yet again. Oh, and we have a few more projects up our sleeves... with sparkle and disco balls and all that jazz. It's not the end of this collaboration by a long stretch!

To catch all of the Endless Summer Projects, catch up with the series here:

What was your favorite project of the summer?

xoxo, MJ

PS. For all of you headed back to school today, like we are, best of luck for an amazing year!




Struggle with the Juggle

Happy back to school week, friends? Last week was the week of projects, and this week the rubber hits the road as my older two start back. Summer is frenetic with camps and playdates, and I have to admit that I'm yearning for a bit of routine and flow. It's a different balancing act.

As a work from the office and work from home mom (too many hyphens to make it worth the effort), I struggle to make time for everything and everyone. I should have perfected the juggle now that I'm nine years into it, and in some ways, I have. I've learned to go easier on myself, and I've learned how much I have to learn...and how much my children teach me. But I also have moments every single day where I wonder how I will get it all done...and with what kind of quality. I love it, and I struggle with it.

I'm over at Sara Moore's charmed blog today talking with her as part of an ongoing series that I love:

She interviews maker mommas from all over and inquires about all the things you'd really want to know.

I hoodwinked her into sharing a little bit with Pars Caeli readers on this series. Here is Sara and her gorgeous family:

Why did you start this series?

We had recently moved to a small town in Oklahoma away from my family, friends, nanny, and my other momma friends that would keep me sane while I was "juggling" motherhood and my small business. I found myself in a fairly desperate place of needing encouragement and advice on how the heck I was going to make it through every day without any of those people. I know a lot of "mompreneurs" and thought they could help not only me, but others as well. Motherhood (or parenting in general) can be very isolating these days. We have everything we need at our fingertips to have and do it all yet what we really need is each other to lean on for support. It takes a village, right?

What you have learned from the many posts?

I've learned that I'm not alone in my struggle. I've learned that balance is defined by you, not society or someone else. And I've learned countless (and genius!) perspectives on being a working momma. I'm so very thankful to all of my guests and readers who have contributed so much of their heart to this series!

Head on over and check out what I have to say about mommy guilt and what I want my children to learn from me (gulp!)

Also, check out these two that I enjoyed: Amy's interview and Erin's interview.

Here's to a kickin' week, my friends.

xoxo, MJ


Cricut Design Space Star and Fan Girl Fridays

Two fun, fun, fun announcements to share with you today, friends! First off, I'm one of the lucky bloggers chosen to compete in the Cricut Design Space Star competition!!! Secondly, Fridays just got a whole lot cooler with a fresh new collaboration with my best buds: Ellen of Minnow & Co., Emily Jeffords, and Paige of Approaching Joy Creative. Welcome to Fan Girl Fridays.

The lovely people of Cricut reached out to me a few weeks ago and wanted to know if I'd like to join in the Cricut Design Space Star challenge. I'd receive a Cricut Explore machine and have a team of fellow bloggers to work alongside. A free design tool and collaboration??? I was all over that.

So, I'll be asking for your help with some clicks and votes for me and Lucky #13 team. Our first category is fashion and gear, and I'm kind of over the moon excited to show off some new projects that you can create, too! Check in next week to see what came from our theme involving... G O L D.

In the Also Awesome category, I'll be posting every Friday now! Catch projects and posts Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, & Friday (gulp!). It's been a while since I've gone four days, but there are no other people in the world I'd rather spend my blog time with than Ellen, Emily, and Paige.

Beginning as a texting convo, we were all sharing our favorite bloggers and makers and artists - the sites that got us into blogging and the projects that moved us to begin. There are some really amazing artists out there, friends, and we are going to be doing a whole lot of appreciating around here. The four of us will be posting Fan Girl on Fridays (with links to one another) to show our love for the people that inspire, that have inspired us for so long. It's time they know they have a Fan Girl or two on their hands! Join in and share your favorites.

This was a tough week in the news, but a beautiful week personally. My hubs has made our anniversary (12 years) into a wonderfully thoughtful week of celebration, and I have some REALLY exciting developments for Pars Caeli that I cannot wait to share with you!!

Until next week, have a bright weekend, friends. And know that I appreciate you.

xoxo, MJ


Lunchbox Whiteboard: Back to School

Celebrating back to school around here means that we're getting a whole host of lunch box notes ready to go. These little love notes have become a treasured part of my communication with the kids while they're away at school. We retell jokes on roadtrips, and my oldest is challenging herself to come up with original jokes all the time.

When they heard that I was going to be doing a back to school project, they asked for a little something special for their lunches. Hence the birth of the lunchbox whiteboard.

This project is a breeze to make (you can even have your kids make it themselves), and it will bring smiles for a long time to come!

Grab an inexpensive, small frame (we bought ours at CVS, and it's 3"x3"). Painting is not necessary, but we wanted chalk paint on the frame so that it could be decorated for special occasions like holidays and birthdays.

Trim a piece of notebook paper to fit in the frame. Assemble.

Write your note, create your joke, or draw your doodle with a dry erase marker.

Top the note with a piece of transparency trimmed to the size of the frame. This helps to keep the note from wiping off while it's in the lunchbag. It also allows your child the opportunity to write a note back to you. My children have already discussed a rating system for my jokes. :)

I recommend keeping the frame in the front pocket of a lunchbag if possible just to keep the food and drinks away from the frame. If that's not an option, consider wiping down your frame and pen as you pack the lunch.

If you're looking for joke ideas, follow me @parscaeli on Twitter or Instagram or Facebook to see a daily joke. We'll begin a fresh school year of giggles next week. And you can always search the archives by following #pc_lunchboxnotes (over 100 in there to get you going).


I have one more awesome surprise today. We're making chic mouse pads as a part of this series. Head over to Frock Files to see the incredible work of Joy. So good. The watercolor effect and the perfect typography.

Thanks to all who helped out with this awesome week of projects. It's been a blast to see how everyone gets ready to school in their own very cool way.

Are you ready to head back?



Apple Pie Doughnuts and a Printable School Poster

I love so many aspects of collaboration...and right near the top is APPLE PIE DOUGHNUTS! Yes, my friends, today I get to share with you the recipe for apple pie doughnuts, thanks to our Back to School series. The incredible Lyndsay of Coco Cake Land has a charming apple printable and the most incredible recipe for a back to school treat today.

But not only that, Sara of Confetti Sunshine, has a great Back to School sign - gigantic in size - for you to use in your back to school photos! It's free, and you have got to see how adorable her daughter looks in her return photos.

We have another two projects for you tomorrow! I'm joining up with one of my favorites, Joy, to show you two DIYs to complete your week.