Open Letter to Extroverts

Open Letter to Extroverts

A letter to extroverts ....

Dear Extrovert,

I hope you don’t mind this food for thought from someone who is very, very different than you.  As an introvert, I do not enjoy being in crowds or walking up to strangers and talking.  But I am worth getting to know, which you will discover if you can just remember a few basic things.

1. I won’t interrupt you, so you will need to stop talking for a minute.  I know you’re interesting and I like hearing about you, but to get to know me you will need to take a breath and be quiet.  Just because I am not jumping in with stories about myself doesn’t mean I have nothing to say.

2. Just because I’m an introvert doesn’t mean I am shy.  Not all introverts are shy.  I like one on one conversations and I will talk and be outgoing.  I don’t mind being approached (although approaching people myself is nearly paralyzing) so feel free to come talk to me!  I don’t consider myself shy at all.

3. Just because I am not like you doesn’t make me wrong.  We are different, to be sure.  But God made me an introvert because it’s how I am supposed to be!  I like to be in smaller groups, I don’t enjoy being out among people for long periods of time and I would rather eat glass than go to a crowded theme park.  But I am actually content and I don’t need you to try to change me.

4. I am happy being alone.  If you see me all alone in the lunchroom, you don’t need to feel sorry for me!  I like being alone.  I don’t need you to rescue me from that.  If you want to come talk to me that’s great, but if you have other things to do that’s great too!  I am actually happy sitting there by myself.

5. We need each other!  I need for you to help me approach people and stay close when I’m in a crowd (I might even hold your hand!).  You need me to help you know when you’re being too pushy and to help you build a relationships with other introverts.

I have a dear, dear friend (Roxanne, the director of the Homeschool Moms’ Winter Summit) who is the extrovertest person I have ever known!  When we first met she got right in my face, all bouncy and excited to meet me and she had lots to say.  I actually took a big step back, held out my arm and said, “Whoa.  You need to stand back while we talk and tone it down a little.”  She didn’t know what to think of me!  I now know that it hurt her feelings a little and I am sorry for that (in my defense, she is VERY outgoing), but my protective instinct kicked in.  She now knows that was just me being Lisa and she loves me anyway (for which I am very grateful!).  We have discovered through building a friendship that we can have a deep appreciation for our differences.  We don’t try to change each other; we bring out the best in each other!

I love my extrovert friends, I wish sometimes it was easier for me to walk up and meet people.  But I know that the challenge is good for me and I do try to push myself out of my comfort zone.  Sometimes.

Let’s do this….you let me be myself and I let you be yourself and we can help each other in our weak areas?!

Sincerely,
Your Introvert Friend

Can Other People Correct Your Child?

Can Other People Correct Your Child?

Over the weekend my friend Connie asked on Facebook, “How do you feel about other people correcting your kids?”  I thought it was interesting, so I asked it on my page too.  It started me thinking, why do people get so upset about this?

Do you get upset when someone else corrects your child?

First I will say that I not only don’t mind, I appreciate it when other people correct my children.  It doesn’t happen very often because I am almost always right there and I am quick to correct my kids.  But they know that if someone else corrects them they are to show respect and heed the correction.  I also really appreciate if a friend tells me if she had to correct my kids (in case I didn’t hear) so I know how to deal with it later.

The most common response on FB was something like, “I don’t mind unless the other person is mean/grumpy/telling my kids not to do something I let them do.”  The problem with this thinking is it is arbitrary and impossible for other people to know.  Other responses were they get annoyed if someone does it while they are standing right there.  But there are times when this is acceptable.

This is about authority, not feelings.  There are clear times when someone else has authority to correct your child.  If you are in my home, I have authority over some areas, even if you are standing right there.  If your child is drinking his grape juice on my carpet, I have the right to tell him to stop and give him direction for where he can drink his juice.

I will generally tell children some of our house rules when they arrive so they know what is expected.  I understand that people have different sets of boundaries in their homes of course!  But I have actually had a woman tell me, after I just announced which rooms were off limits, “We let Johnny explore. I don’t want him to have boundaries.”  I asked her, “Are you planning to follow him around while he’s ‘exploring’?  If not, then he needs to stay where I told him.”  I have a right to make those kinds of rules in my home and to enforce them. (She later told me that she believes her children should never have to obey anyone but their parents and she has told her children that they don’t have to do what I say.  This woman has robbed her children of a God-given life lesson.  And you can imagine how unpleasant her children are to be around.)

If we are at the park and I tell my kids where they can go, I don’t have a right to expect other kids to follow that.  It’s not my area of authority.   If we are in the grocery store and a child is running their cart into things, I have authority to tell them to stop.  It is against the general rules of the store.  In the movie theater, I have the right to ask the child behind me to stop kicking my seat.

I have been in other people’s homes where their children were jumping on furniture, hanging off balconies and doing things I would never allow my children to do.  But I don’t have any authority to correct them, especially if the parents are right there.  It definitely makes me uncomfortable, but I stay quiet.

But that is not necessarily discipline.  If it’s just something they really didn’t know and not a discipline issue, I like to speak directly to the child.  I feel like it shows them respect and helps me build a relationship with them.  I see telling them not to drink on the carpet as a teaching situation, not necessarily correcting.  It is best if possible, when dealing with a discipline issue, to speak to the mom instead of the child.  This is especially if you don’t have a good relationship with their family.

This gets tricky because, as we all know, moms get really defensive about this.  Look, I get it.  The times I have had someone tell me something about my child or harshly corrected them in front of me I got my back up for a second.  It’s a natural, fleshly reaction.  But I almost immediately make myself stop and realize that I need to practice self-control and maturity.  It’s not an insult or a criticism, and even if it is I can handle that and I want my children to know how to handle that.  Their lives will be much better for it.

I have 2 ideas on this….first, I want my kids to learn respect for others over protecting their own feelings.  If they are corrected and it hurts their feelings in some way, they will get over it.  If they can be respectful and generous to the grumpy person, they have the satisfaction of knowing they are developing a wisdom that is pleasing to God.  Second, you can tell someone that you prefer they not correct your child without turning it into an offense.  Why do we have to get so upset about it?!  It is an opportunity to grow and learn and become better at dealing with problems.

I have, if I have a relationship with them, spoken to a child about a character issue.  But I try to do it in kindness and love with the goal of helping, not criticizing.  It is not always received that way, but then it’s just another opportunity for me to learn to forgive.  We can’t seek a perfect, trouble-free life and ever really grow.

In closing, I want to add that it is never OK to physically discipline someone else’s child.  Again, it’s a simple matter of authority.  Even if someone told me I could do that, I wouldn’t.  There are plenty of ways to teach a child in your care without touching them.

I know this is long and if you are still reading, I really just want to say that my goal in sharing this is that we all become a little less sensitive about letting other people speak into our child’s life.  It is good for them to understand that other adults have wisdom and authority over them in some areas.  And if it’s a gray area then they should be kind and generous no matter what it makes them feel like.

Thanks for hanging in there with me for this LONG post.  :)

How to Always Find the Scissors

How to Always Find the Scissors

Do you spend too much time looking for a pair of scissors?!

If I told you to go get a pair of scissor right now, how long would it take you?  Or how much time do you think you spend going to the junk drawer for the scissors when you need them from another room then putting them back again, or worse….not being able to find them because you didn’t put them away?!

I have solved that problem in my house.  It was so simple that I can’t believe it took me so long to figure it out.  Now you, my brilliant friends, have probable already done this and will be feeling sorry for not telling me sooner.  It’s OK.  I won’t hold it against you.

I went to the store, bought a bunch of cheap scissors (even some of those kid scissors that are on sale right now will work!).  Then I came home and put them in every spot in the house where I might need scissors.  I no longer look for scissors or hurt my teeth trying to avoid going to get scissors or spend any time fussing at people for taking my scissors.  I am sure if I counted up the amount of time I have saved through the end of my life I would have enough to take a nice long vacation.

Here are the places we now keep a pair of scissors:

1. In a kitchen drawer

scissors03
2. In my makeup drawer
3. With my first aid supplies
4. In my sewing/ironing area

scissors02

5. In my purse
6. In the car
7. With my essential oils/mailing supplies

scissors01

8. By my computer
9. With my school tools
10. In my workshop/garage

Sometimes I keep them in a drawer, sometimes I can hang them (like in the workshop).  But they are right at arm’s length in every room.

The key to the success of this plan is to leave the scissors where they belong.  Just use them and put them right back.  No need to carry them off anywhere.  You could even use tape around the handles to label where they belong.

Happy time saving!

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Embracing the Little Summer Dress

Embracing the Little Summer Dress

Since losing so much weight I have been able to pick up some new clothes recently.  It’s been such fun to fit into clothes in the regular sized stores.  I am embracing the little dresses that are everywhere.  They are cool and modest and so feminine.  I can spin and sing, “I feel pretty….” when I wear them.

But they are a little too short for me.  So I add a light skirt or long shorts to make them cover everything I want to cover, especially when sitting.  I don’t wanna be flashing anyone!

I got this striped number at Old Navy.  But since it’s sleeveless I added….wait for it….a 5/8 sleeve that I also found at Old Navy.  It’s my perfect sleeve.  I ordered 3 more from their website.  Then I added some long shorts that I found at Sam’s Club and finished it off with a touch of red with my Otz shoes.  They are this year’s favorites.

Loving these little summer dresses!

This is exactly the same outfit, but I changed the striped dress for a simple black dress and added an extra necklace.

Loving these little summer dresses!

I got this little top as a splurge when I was in San Francisco a few weeks ago.  It was at the anthropologie there and I decided it was better than any souvenir.  The t-shirt I got at Sam’s club and the denim shorts are from Forever 21.  My kids got me a pair of blue Otz for Mother’s Day.

Loving these little summer dresses!

This last look isn’t a little dress, but I wanted to show you that I added leggings and rolled them up to make a very thin, cool skirt work.  And this top is my favorite, favorite.  You might be wondering why since it looks so plain.

Loving these little summer dresses!

It’s the back…..oh heaven the back…..

Loving these little summer dresses!

And please forgive the weird little thing popping up in the bottom of the last 2 pictures.  My husband took them for me and apparently he was holding his sunglasses at the time.

Thanks for stopping by and be sure to check out my modesty gallery for more of what we wear!

An Easy to Build Outdoor Game

An Easy to Build Outdoor Game

For last weekend’s graduation party, we decided to build a new game.  We had all ages coming, so we needed something everyone could play.  I bought a sheet of plywood and some 2x4s and told my oldest son what I had in mind, but let him tweak it however he wanted. Here’s a picture tutorial for you…..

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Cut a sheet of plywood in half & draw three sizes of circles.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Just use whatever you have for the circles.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Drill a hole inside of each circle.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Just make sure it’s big enough to fit a jigsaw blade into.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Jigsaw out the circles.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Easy.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Make each half the same.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Get out the 2x4s.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Cut four the size of the plywood, about 4′.  Four at 3′, four at 4’4″ and the last two will be the finished width when you’ve attached them.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

You can change the sizes.  You just need four frames that are exactly the same.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Screw them together.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

1, 2, 3, 4.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Screw those to the plywood.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

It’s a great job for a son.  We attached one more 2×4 between the frames along the back for stability.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

One hour – done.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Two colors of paint is more fun than one.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

I used a daughter for this job.  We sanded the circle openings a little bit first.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

I didn’t take pics of us painting the X on the front, but it was just painter’s tape and a sponge roller.  Nothing hard. Then we sewed little bean bags with fabric scraps.  They should be loosely filled.  That’s a great job for an 11 year old.  You could use balls if you don’t sew.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

I made the numbers with plain paper and a die cut machine then just glued them on.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

Then play.

  An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

At any age.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

This was a hit for our party.   After a while the older boys played by hiding behind the boards like forts and pelting each other with the bean bags.  The younger kids ran around with the bean bags, there were lots of variations on the game.

An easy to build outdoor game that's great for all ages! -- The Pennington Point

It took a few hours and the total cost was $37 (but I already had paint and other supplies).

Have fun!

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Graduation – Check!

Graduation – Check!

A high level of activity over the weekend has put me into a state of joyful exhaustion.  We have been building toward this weekend for the past 18 years.  Graduating 2 of our daughters has been such an emotional ride.  Happiness at being finished with their schooling and such grief that it’s over.  No more days of mommy school outside on the patio, weaving weeds into wreaths for our hair while we learn.  Although I have to admit, we haven’t done that for years.

This makes 5 graduates under my belt with only 4 more to go.  It’s a weird feeling having graduated more than half of our children.  I should have some kind of sash with badges on it for each child.  I could wear it to homeschool conferences.  And Miss America pageants.

We had about 50 people here for a small ceremony and dinner, then ended the night with the worst fireworks display in history.  The founding fathers would have been ashamed of our shabby little show.  Even the sparklers were a dud.

We didn’t do a ton of preparation for this party.  The grass was mowed and the porch was swept, but no big decorations or fancy table settings.

The girls did set up a table with some of their memories and accomplishments.

homeschool graduation -- The Pennington Point

My little cuties…..

homeschool graduation -- The Pennington Point

After James and I said a few words the girls thanked Mom and Dad and all of the guests, then sang a song they wrote together.

  homeschool graduation -- The Pennington Point

We served up some delicious bar-b-que and sides.

homeschool graduation -- The Pennington Point

I ordered brisket, chicken, potato salad and beans from a local place and we added chips, green salad and both wheat bread and gluten-free bread.  We also had a trough full of cold drinks.

homeschool graduation -- The Pennington Point

The morning before the party we put ice cream into mason jars and put them in the freezer.  We filled little bowls with various candies and toppings so they would be ready to serve.  We made labels for everything and had it all ready to go.  When it was time to serve dessert we put the ice cream into tubs of ice, opened the toppings and it was ready!

homeschool graduation -- The Pennington Point

We had trail mix, gummy bears, dark chocolate m&ms, milk chocolate m&ms, peppermint patties, peanuts, sprinkles, chocolate sauce, caramel sauce and whipped cream.  Oh…..and cherries of course!

homeschool graduation -- The Pennington Point

As the sun went down and about 30 the people were still around, we pulled out the fireworks, also known as “an hour of lame”.  I thought I was ready with 2 new lighters and plenty of ammo.  My friend Sara also brought some fireworks to add to the what we bought.  But she and I have no idea what we’re doing when it comes to pyrotechnics and nothing we bought amounted to anything exciting.  Plus the lighters weren’t working right so it took about 5 minutes to light each one, creating a serious lull in the festivities.

I tried to keep the crowd from revolting by handing out snacks, but it didn’t work.  There was quite a bit of complaining, mostly from me and Sara.

Despite the lack of fireworks excitement it was a wonderful evening.  Great friends.  Great conversation.  Kids playing together.  Celebration.  What more could I ask for?

homeschool graduation -- The Pennington Point

Have a great week!

Gluten Free Pretzel Dogs

Gluten Free Pretzel Dogs

A few years ago I shared my friend Martha’s great recipe for pretzel dogs.  These have become a family favorite and we make them every year on July 4th.

Today I will be serving these delicious dogs, but with a twist.  Get it?  Twist….pretzels….

Since I have several gluten-free kids now, I have converted the recipe to GF for a treat for them and the rest of the family still likes them.  I buy gluten-free flour at Costco and it is a little bit sweet, and not our favorite for everything.  But it is really good for these dogs.

Gluten-free pretzel dogs!

Gluten Free Pretzel Dogs
1 Tablespoon SAF Yeast (I love this yeast!)
1¼ cups warm water
½ cup brown sugar
3.5-4.5 cups GF flour flour
pinch of salt
3 teaspoons baking soda
1½ cups water
Butter for brushing, melted

1 pkg Oscar Meyer Selects Black Angus Hot Dogs (I learned that from Martha!)
parchment paper

I use a Bosch or KitchenAid to mix my dough.  Put the yeast into the warm water, add the sugar and mix for just a sec.  Then add the flour and salt.  Knead for 8 minutes then let rest for 20 minutes.  Then punch it down and divide it into 10 sections.  Roll each section into a “snake” and wrap it around the dogs.  Dip each wrapped dog into a mix of water and baking soda.  Bake on parchment paper for 400° for 12-15 minutes.

These stick to the parchment so pull them off as soon as you can touch them.  The longer they cool the harder they are to get off.  If you have a silicone mat they won’t stick to that as much.

You can replace the GF flour with all purpose flour of you don’t need gluten-free.

Now just sit and watch your family enjoy them!

 

A FUN Christian Workout Playlist!

A FUN Christian Workout Playlist!

I'm always looking for some new, fun music to workout to!  -- The Pennington Point

It’s about time for another workout playlist!  I don’t know about you, but I get tired of the same old songs every morning for an hour.  In other words, I am spoiled.  Can you imagine me complaining about that to the starving children of Africa?

Waaah-Waaah my ipod battery runs low so sometimes I can’t take pictures.

OK, I’m better now.  Perspective check.

Anyway, I do like me some new tunes so here are some upbeat fun ones to add to your workout list.  All of these make me wanna groove to the music.

Here you go!1. Count Your Rainbows by 1 Girl Nation (sometimes I just love a girl song)
2. Every Good Thing by The Afters (it makes you feel good)
3. Focus by Holly Starr (this slows down a little, but it’s a great message)
4. Gold by Owl City (my kids love Owl City, so I have to include it!)
5. Listen by Josh Wilson (this will preach)
6. Outta My Mind by Anthem Lights (it’s a little electric, but fun for working out)
7. The Story of Your Life by Matthew West (he always has a life message)
8. That’s How You Change the World by Newsboys (I heart Newsboys)
9. Walk on the Water by Britt Nicole (she has the sweetest sound)
10. What If We Were Real by Mandisa (My current favorite song)
11. Words by Hawk Nelson (I like to run to this one)
12. You Lead by Jamie Grace (This is a cute song…it leads me to worship)

Be sure to check out my January, February and April playlists too!

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7 Questions Answered About My Weight Loss Journey

7 Questions Answered About My Weight Loss Journey

Yesterday on Facebook I posted a before/after pic of myself since I started my weight loss journey.  I didn’t expect the outpouring of support and especially the 200+ emails and messages I got asking for more info on how I did it.

80+ pounds of weight off!  Come see how she did it!

I so wish I could reply to them all, but there’s isn’t enough time for me to do that, which makes me so sad!  You all are so special!  I am gonna try here to reply to the basic questions and fill you in as best I can.  I am sure I will miss something and I hope you will leave a comment if you have more questions and I will try to answer those as best I can.

This blogger answers some great questions about how she lost her weight!  #weightloss #diet #essentialoils

1. How did you lose the weight?
I did it the old-fashioned way….diet and exercise.
a. I have written several posts about what I am eating, but in a nutshell I am using a book called Dr. Gundry’s Diet Evolution.  My doctor recommended it to me and I am following it almost exactly.
b. A few weeks after I started the diet I started to exercise.  Before this, I never did any kind of exercise.  I would have told you, “I am not that kind of person.”  But it turns out that it was in me all along….or maybe God just put it there, but I do enjoy it now.  Weird, huh?

2. What are you eating?
The book describes it a lot better than I can, but I basically eat vegetables and protein.  No sugars (including artificial sweeteners, honey, etc.), no dairy (except yogurt), no carbs (pasta, bread, potatoes, rice, etc.).  It feels really strict at first, but once I got used to it I find it very enjoyable.  I do a lot of traveling and I have been able to keep it up even on the road.  Here’s a post with 7 lunch ideas!

3. What kind of exercise are you doing?
I started by just walking on my road.  Then I decided to challenge myself a little more.   I jogged, just a little at first, then longer and longer until now I run for about half of the 5 miles I go every morning.  I like it, but I needed to work on shaping my body more, so I added a workout called TTapp and I now do that about 3x a week.  And recently I started adding a few weights and other toning exercises (Who AM I?!).

4. How long did it take and how did you not lose motivation?
It took me about 6 months to lose the first 70# and 5 months to lose the last 13# and I still want to lose another 20#.  I am assuming that will take me another year, which is fine.  I feel good and am in no huge hurry.  I credit three things to my being able to stick with it.  The first is accountability….this was huge!  I told everybody I was doing it and I post every morning on Facebook and Instagram.  If I don’t post my exercise picture I will get at least 20 messages from people asking where I am.  It’s a strong motivation.  Second, getting the first few weeks under my belt started the ball rolling and I allowed myself to buy a couple of new outfits.  I love fashion so knowing I would reward myself with a few new things all along the way was a big motivation.  It’s a whole new experience to enjoy trying on clothes and that inspires me to keep going.  And last is prayer.  I am determined to turn to God first before I let myself blow it and He gives me strength every time to stay the course.

5. Can you tell me more about the supplements you are using?
I have talked a LOT about Lift Caps.  There’s a whole, long story as to how God led me to these supplements but I can’t write it all here.  I started taking them the same day that I started my diet journey, so I consider them to be a big part of my success.  They helped me get past the fatigue and moodiness that I was struggling with.  The people at the company have been a huge support and since then I have started taking some of their other products.  I use their multi-vitamin, Life Shield and I take their Vitamin C.  They are great about answering all of your questions a lot better than I can.

6. How did the essential oils help you?
Oh my goodness!  I don’t know if I would have been able to stick with it if I hadn’t had my essential oils.  They helped me when I would have cravings, when I needed an energy boost or if I was just feeling low.  I have learned so much about how the oils support the body that it has not only helped me to lose weight, but boosted my general drive for overall health and wellness.  I started drinking their NingXia Red a few months ago and that has been another huge help to my staying well and being able to keep up the lifestyle change.  My use of the oils has been woven into my journey and I am so grateful!

7. What did you do about hypothyroidism?
This, along with adrenal fatigue, is something that I have been dealing with for the past 5+ years.  It definitely plays a part in my struggles, but I think just changing my diet made it much more manageable.  I started researching how to use essential oils to improve my thyroid function which led me to use EndoFlex and Myrtle twice a day over my thyroid.  It has made a huge difference and my thyroid is testing in normal range now.  I will have it tested again in October and will let you know how that goes.

One thing that I want to add even though it wasn’t asked, is how much the diet and lifestyle change has affected my relationship with God.  The morning walk/jog has given me more time with Him each day and that has led to a deeper spiritual walk.  I have grown to trust Him more and that has added a peace to my life that is better than any weight loss or physical healing.  My friends, if I can impart that one message to you, that God is right there ready to fill all of your needs, it would be worth everything I have gone through.

I hope that helps to answer some of your questions!  Let’s keep the conversation going….what else can I share with you to help you on your own journey?  I want to be your cheerleader!

 

Summer Home Tour 2014

Summer Home Tour 2014

It’s time for the second annual Summer Home Tour hosted by the lovely Gina at The Shabby Creek Cottage (and one of my bestest friends).  If you’re here from Traci’s place….welcome!  I love her style!!!

I just fixed up my porch for the summer, which inspired me to fluff up the rest of the place.  I’ve been so excited for you to come for a visit.

A gorgeous patriotic front porch!

I painted a houndstooth rug to make guests feel welcome, and so we could easily wash the chicken messes off.  Chickens are soooo charming, until they poop on your porch.

A painted rug on the porch! Cool!

Come on through the screen door and sit a spell…..

A beautiful front porch for summer! -- The Pennington Point
With 9 kids, we need a lot of seating and there’s not much space.  It’s not easy to do in this little bitty house, but there’s always an extra seat for you!

A gorgeous summer home tour! -- The Pennington Point

I made the coffee table with a furniture dolly I found at a flea market, some galvanized pipes and the glass top from my old coffee table!  It’s happiness disguised as wood and metal.

A Coffee table made with an old furniture dolly and some galvanized pipes.

I think I’m in love.

A gorgeous summer home tour! -- The Pennington Point

It’s always nice to see things from another angle.

A gorgeous summer home tour! -- The Pennington Point

My painted piano is one of my favorite pieces in the house.

A gorgeous summer home tour! I love this painted piano -- The Pennington Point

This summer I went with an outdoor theme….birds and bugs and butterflies.  I was going for a look of “kids exploring the summer season”.

A gorgeous summer home tour! -- The Pennington Point

I carried that theme into my dining room/homeschool room, which is open to the living room through 2 wide doorways.

A gorgeous summer home tour! -- The Pennington Point

One of my girls found a speed limit sign at a resale shop and snatched it up for me.  She knows just what I like!

A gorgeous summer home tour! This speed limit sign on the mantle is great! -- The Pennington Point

A turn to the left and you see my chalkboard wall.  We change it out seasonally. (And in case you’re wondering….the table is a ping pong table with a vinyl tablecloth over it.)

A gorgeous summer home tour! Love this ping pong table as a dining room table.  -- The Pennington Point

I recently added the gorgeous shutters to the dining room from blinds.com and I love them with a passion.  We added trim to them, like we did in my bedroom.  Come back soon ‘cuz I’m gonna show you how we did it!

The long desk is where my kids use their computers (that’s what the little cabinet below holds) and do schoolwork.  It doubles as a buffet when we have parties or holiday meals.

A beautiful chalkboard wall in this summer home tour.

Oh!  And did you see the lights we made?!

Make lights from wire baskets

The chalkboard wall is full of painted jars and leaves and things the kids might bring in from their outside adventures.  I spray painted the mason jars….eeee!  Cute!

A gorgeous summer home tour!  Love this kids' summer decorating theme.... painted mason jars and outdoor touches
The other side of the room is where we do school lessons.

A gorgeous summer home tour! This is the homeschool room, very organized. -- The Pennington Point

I keep all of our school supplies in these baskets.  It’s great to have everything right there when we need it.

A gorgeous summer home tour! And organized homeschool space.  -- The Pennington Point

Back in the living room you may have noticed a ladder…..lots of people ask what’s up there.

A gorgeous summer home tour! -- The Pennington Point

It’s a loft where 2 of my boys sleep.  But even more importantly, it’s where we keep the Legos.  5 boys and many years worth of teeny, tiny, overpriced, messy….oops…..sorry….I’m getting off track.

There’s a bed on each end of the room with storage in between.  I actually got quite a bit of storage in there considering the room has serious limitations.

A boy's loft and Lego room.  Small space with big ideas!

The loft has only one real wall, so we built shelves to fit along the entire thing and boxes to fit on the shelves and voila!  Lego storage.

A boy's loft and Lego room.  Small space with big ideas!

The wood on the floor is the door…..so fun!  And there’s a little round window in the wall.  It’s a really cute room.

I used these fabulous metal cabinets from IKEA across the other side of the room so each boy has one for his personal stuff.  On each end we built a shelf that faces the bed so they have a place for their nighttime needs like clocks and books and pieces of trash.

A boy's loft and Lego room.  Small space with big ideas!

Then we built a shelf in the center to hold all of the manuals and instructions that my boys insist on keeping.  The whole thing makes one long surface on which the boys can create Lego masterpieces.

A boy's loft and Lego room.  Small space with big ideas!

Through the kitchen and out the door, you get to the luxurious poolside lounge.  Last year’s cushions didn’t survive the Texas weather, so I had to change it all up.  I have some plans to improve it even more, but this is what it looks like right now….come back in a couple of weeks for an update on the cushions and throw pillows!

A gorgeous summer home tour! This backyard deck decorated with junk is a favorite!  -- The Pennington Point

I found these turbines in my neighbor’s trash one morning when I was walking.  You can bet I grabbed them up and carried them home!

A gorgeous summer home tour! This backyard deck decorated with junk is a favorite!  -- The Pennington Point

It’s such a great place to hide from the kids….oh, um….I mean relax.

A gorgeous summer home tour! This backyard deck decorated with junk is a favorite!  -- The Pennington Point

On the opposite side of the yard is my husband’s office.  The kids and I surprised him in February with a front office makeover while he was out of town.

A gorgeous summer home tour! Outdoor office makeover. -- The Pennington Point

The last space I want to show you is my little office.  It used to be my son’s Lego room, but as you saw, we moved all of that to their loft bedroom.  Then it was a place where the kids could study, but they didn’t really use it much.  Now it’s my office.  Things change quickly around here.  Don’t blink or you’ll miss something.

The chest under my desk-table is filled with special things for the boys to play with when they are hanging out in there with me.

A gorgeous summer home tour! Love this small office space.  -- The Pennington Point

It’s where I sit and try to think of something eloquent to say.

A gorgeous summer home tour! -- The Pennington Point

Well that’s all folks!  Thanks for stopping by and be sure to head over to the rest of the homes and check out all of the gorgeousness!!!  You’ve got to go see Lindsay at The White Buffalo Styling Co….she’s awesome!

A gorgeous summer home tour! -- The Pennington Point

You can see last year’s tour featuring other rooms in my house HERE.

Monday, June 2nd

The Shabby Creek Cottage
The Nester
At The Picket Fence (Vanessa)
Thistlewood Farms
The Inspired Room

Tuesday, June 3rd

The Handmade Home
My Fabuless Life
Finding Home
In My Own Style
The Hunted Interior

Wednesday, June 4th

Inspired By Charm
Jennifer Rizzo
Madigan Made
Makely School for Girls
Funky Junk Interiors

Thursday, June 5th

Jones Design Company
Beneath My Heart
The Pennington Point
White Buffalo Styling Co.
Southern Hospitality

Friday, June 6th

At the Picket Fence (Heather)
Desert Domicile
Tatertots & Jello
Home Stories A to Z
Live Laugh Rowe