Hey all you cool people!

Well, the ‘manor’ may need to be called a ‘resort’ come June.  McCall Resort–doesn’t roll off the tongue easily, but whatever.

We just signed on the dotted line for a pool to be put into our backyard.

Mr Creativity has been working like a dog super creative this year.  He works very hard and we are all so proud of him (love you babe)!

I have done my part as well.  Remembering to use the red card EVERY SINGLE TIME I go to Target is no small feat.  I have even tried to use it other places as well.

fyi: Chipolte doesn’t take the Target Red Card. :(

If you follow me on Pinterest, you probably had a clue about this with the addition of the ‘Pool Drool’ Board.  Here are some of my inspiration pics that I’ll leave with you today

 McCall Manor inspiration poolSource

McCall Manor inspiration poolSource

McCall Manor Inspiration PoolSource

Can you tell that I want a rectangle pool?  The pool designers all had a hard time not giving me a crazy free-form (lagoon) pool.  Bless their hearts, there’s not too much designing when it comes to a rectangle.

I’m headed to the tile place today to pick out our colors–Hopefully we don’t end up with something like Clark Griswold dreamed about on Christmas Eve…

What do you think about these pool pics?  Are you a rectangle pool person or a more free-form pool person?





Guess what????

You CAN teach an old dog new tricks!  Well, Emily at Jones Design Company can anyway…

I recently signed up for Emily’s graphic design class and have been enjoying learning a new way to be creative.

She has made some tutorial videos that even my 41 year old brain can understand…sigh.

simplified graphic design

If you would like to join me in learning a few new tricks, click on the graphic above or THIS LINK.

Registration opens today.  Last time she opened registration, the class was full in about 24 hours…so don’t hem and haw around if you are interested!!




I hope you all had the best Easter and that you got to visit with family, friends and fellow Christians.  We at McCall Manor got to do just that.

Plus, we got to eat like kings.

Each Easter we try to get a family picture before we go to services for the morning.

And each Easter we fail miserably at this and have to come home all scruffy and disheveled to try and get the perfect snapshot of our little family.

This is worse than chinese water torture not fun…to put it mildly. 

Here are some pics of the progression towards the ‘perfect pic’.  Enjoy our pain…please.

outtake 1

outtake 2

outtake 3

outtake 4

outtake 5


easter 1

easter 2  2014

I truly hope that your day was filled with joy and abundant reminders of how much God loves you.  If you don’t know how much you are loved by our Savior, please let me know and I will share with you the amazing details.

I’ll leave you with THIS LINK that Mr. Creativity sent my way today (I was sitting across the living room from him and he emailed it to me… we were worn out from the above photo shoot I tell ya)  It is powerful and will hopefully make you run to the scriptures to read the book of John for yourself.  :)

He is RISEN!




I do my best shopping while I’m jogging through my neighborhood apparently…

This beauty was sitting in the gutter…like roadkill.

MM coffee table makeover

All I can say is “thank goodness for crazy people that throw out perfectly good Pottery Barn furniture”.  Yep, you read that right…Pottery Barn…for free.

This is actually from the PB Kids line and it is a farmhouse dining table.  Which made it the perfect size for a coffee table, but it was a tad too tall.

After Mr. Creativity and his friend (we will call him “Skyscraper”) got out the power tools and chopped off the legs at that bottom nub, it was perfect!

So, I painted the legs with ASCP french linen and the top with CeCe Caldwell’s Vermont Slate.

MM coffee table makeover

The table was a little borning, so I added a fretwork design to the top of it.

MM coffee table makeover

Here’s how:

After taping off the long straight lines and painting them with ASCP Arles, I let them dry and added the same grey from the legs on top of that.

Then I marked the fretwork design with a ruler and a pencil (I kind of dug my pencil into the wood to create a groove)

MM coffee table makeover

I was then able to paint the yellow layer and grey layer free handed.

MM coffee table makeover

MM coffee table makeover

After that, I just sanded away some of the grey to expose the yellow.  I figured that the kids/dog would scratch it up anyway, might as well make it look like I meant for it to look that way. :)

MM coffee table makeover

I then gave it an all over waxing.

MM coffee table makeover

MM coffee table makeover

What do you think?  Want to come jogging with me?



linking to:

* Savvy Southern Style  *  Homeroad  *  Live Laugh Rowe  *  The Shady Porch  I Gotta Create The Crafty Blog Stalker  *  The Project Stash  *  The Turquoise Home The Pin Junkie  *  Miss Mustard Seed  *  Jennifer Rizzo  *  Lovely Linky Ladies  *  Domestic Superhero  *  Gingerly Made  *  Flaunt it Friday City of Creative Dreams  *  Titi Crafty  *  It’s Overflowing  *  Say G’Day Under the Table and Dreaming Boogie Board Cottage  Do Tell Tuesday Tuesday To Do  *

Spring is here!!   I only know this because I went home to Tennessee last week and got to see daffodils, Japanese quince, and dogwoods blooming!

It was so refreshing to see these beautiful reminders that…well…winter didn’t kill everything.

Since here in Florida it already feels like summer I thought I would ‘make a little spring’ to have inside our house.

McCall Manor Spring Wreath

This is just made with card stock from JoAnn’s, a foam wreath form and tiny brads.  And of course there is hot glue involved.  Nothing says ‘craft project’ like hot glue…

On the Silhouette Online store I found a cut file for a ranunculus  flower.  I downloaded it and then played with the sizes.  There are 3 different sizes of flowers on this wreath.

A small circle was added to the center of each petal group so that the petals could attach to each other with a brad.

McCall Manor spring wreath

Once the petal groups were cut, I curled the individual petals with my finger.  Then they were layered and stuck together with the brad.

McCall Manor spring wreath

For this wreath, there are 13 flowers ranging in size and color.

McCall Manor spring wreath

I wrapped the wreath form with leftover green ribbon.

Two different sizes.

My Grandmother and Mother have a saying for when something isn’t quite perfect:  “It’ll never be noticed on a galloping horse.  And my dear, that’s the only kind of horse you ride.”

That might just be my mantra.

McCall Manor spring wreath

Once the flowers were placed ‘randomly’ around the wreath, I cut some leaves and stuck them on with hot glue.

McCall Manor Spring Wreath

So while it’s not a  bunch daffodils, I’ll take it.

After all, that galloping horse I’m riding wouldn’t let me slow down to smell the flowers anyway…




Want to Check Out More Silhouette Projects?

My Silhouette Challenge buddies and I are all sharing projects on our blogs today, so peruse the projects below for a wealth of Silhouette inspiration!

Spring Cleaning - Custom Canisters I Love Paris In the Springtime Etching for Sping - Mug Personalization for the April Silhouette Challenge WHEELY excited about spring No-Sew Fabric & Burlap Peter Cottontail Banner Narwhals, plus friends Gold Fern Easter Eggs Mr and Mrs Easter Egg Head Easter Bunny Plate Welcome Spring - A Sign From Tile Paper Flowers Wall Art DIY: Bunny-Stamped Goodie Bags for Easter Inspirational Window Now We Have Everything Nursery Art Spring' and Flowers Paper Banner Glitter Jars with a Happy, Hoppy Bunny Made with the Silhouette + Free Cut File! Mother's Day Wreath Decorate A Watering Can With Vinyl! April Showers Sketch Pen Printable Spring Wreath Burlap Garden Flag with Heat Transfer Vinyl Pretty Little Herb Pots Peter Cottontail Door Hanger Spring Has Sprung Spring Has Sprung - Subway Art Bloom And Grow Sunflower Bouquet for Teacher Appreciation Sharpie Easter Eggs Tear Open Easter Egg Cards Look what's Blooming! ~ Silhouette Challenge Everblooming Paper Bouquet Silhouette Challenge: Spring Polish Swap Card [B] is for Bloom: Scrap Lumber Flower Vases Tulip Time - Fridge Magnets Neon Paper Pinwheels {tutorial} A Happy Spring Card Sketching Just Got Easier! Spring Bunny Baskets Bird Nerd Easter Eggs Easter Peeps Treats with {FREE} Printables and Cut File Garden Bench Update

1. Dream a Little Bigger // 2. So Much Better With Age // 3. Adventures in All Things Food // 4. Creative Carnival // 5. The Kim Six Fix // 6. feto soap // 7. One Dog Woof // 8. The Experimental Home // 9. From Wine to Whine // 10. Architecture of a Mom // 11. Grey Luster Girl // 12. Minted Strawberry // 13. Designed Decor // 14. Tried & True // 15. Silhouette School // 16. Bringing Creativity 2 Life // 17. Weekend Craft // 18. Practically Functional // 19. Please Excuse My Craftermath… // 20. McCall Manor // 21. unOriginal Mom // 22. Creative Ramblings // 23. A Tossed Salad Life // 24. A Glimpse Into Barb’s Life // 25. Kate’s Paper Creations // 26. Simply Kelly Designs // 27. Cutesy Crafts // 28. Persia Lou // 29. Whats Next Ma // 30. Two Purple Couches // 31. The Frill of Life // 32. Nearly Handmade // 33. Get Silvered // 34. Ginger Snap Crafts // 35. Life After Laundry // 36. The Sensory Emporium // 37. Monograms & Cake // 38. The Thinking Closet // 39. My Paper Craze // 40. Chicken Scratch NY

Linking to:

Nearly Handmade  *  Boogieboard Cottage  *  Cedar Hill Farmhouse  *  Under the Table and Dreaming  *  Titi Crafty  *  It’s Overflowing  *  Nancherrow  *  Lil Miss Tori  *  Savvy Southern Style Polka Dots on Parade  *  naptime is my time  *  Delineate Your Dwelling  *  I Gotta Create  *  The Crafty Blog Stalker  *  The Project Stash The Turquoise Home  *  The Pin Junkie  *  Jennifer Rizzo  *  The Pin It Party Lovely Linky Ladies  *  Domestic Superhero  *  Gingerly Made  *  Flaunt it Friday  *  City of Creative Dreams  *  Say G’Day  *  Tuesday To Do  *

Okay, so here is a little confession of mine….I don’t care about how my mailbox looks.

I know, I know.

Y’all are all gasping with an expression of shock and awe.  Simmer down.

Here is my poor pitiful mailbox before

…I really don’t see the big deal, it’s semi-black

…in most places

MM Mailbox 2MM mailbox 4MM mailbox 1ugly old mailbox













Now before you get all judgy on me, just realize that it WOULD STILL HOLD MAIL!  No, I could’t alert the mailman that there was mail to send out…but whatever.

The HOA in our neighborhood decided that everyone needed to work on their mailboxes and for some reason they thought I should be grouped in with everyone.  They sent out a pleasant letter that stated we had a choice (thank you oh so much…) of either repainting our mailboxes and replacing the numbers–which they didn’t tell us where to get said numbers, or replacing the entire mailbox.  Oh did I mention that would only be $450.  Nothankyouverymuch.

MM mailbox makeover

Lowe’s carries everything that I would need to take care of the painting job and the replacement flag.  And it was under $10!

I started by scraping off the chunks of flaking old paint with a razor blade.  Then I rubbed the whole thing down with steel wool.  Next I spray painted.

15 minutes of work.

MM mailbox 7

McCall Manor Mailbox Makeover

The flag was easy to install–word to the wise: don’t lose the screw that held on your old flag.

McCall Manor Mailbox Makeover

**I am hiding our street address number so that you won’t come snatch my beautiful mailbox**

The tricky part came with the numbers.  I found out that we could order the numbers from a company in town and it would cost me $25.  But I had some gold vinyl that came from a sign shop.  I don’t think that the vinyl that is sold in JoAnn’s or Michael’s would hold up to the high heat, but the commercial vinyl will.

But I still didn’t know the font name.  So I snapped a picture of the old numbers and sent them to our friend Matt.  He is an art director and I figured he would be able to distinguish it.

Turns out, there is an app for that!  It’s called ‘What the Font’, of course!

McCall Manor Mailbox Makeover

Once I knew the font name, I just cut the numbers with my silhouette machine and applied them to my (dry) mailbox.

I might just start a little side business and take care of the neighborhood.

What do you think?  Is your mailbox in need of a little spray-paint therapy?



Lyons Coffee Roasters

Yes, for those of you that know me, you know of my love affair with the roasted coffee bean.  I don’t know really when it started.

Late-night organic chemistry study sessions at Perkins in Jackson, TN?

Chatting with my friend Jan in Kentucky while the kids crawled all over our feet?

Who knows when it happened.  I really don’t care.  I. Just. LOVE. Coffee.

I love the sound that the coffee maker whispers when the last bit of the gorgeous liquid has travelled through the filter.  That sputtering sound that says “I’m all yours, pour me in the cup and let’s get this day started”.

Isn’t that what you hear?

I thought so–that’s why we are friends.

Lyons Coffee Roasters

Well, today I have one more feature for you.  We have covered the basis on handmade items that are fabric (Brenda and Peggy have some fun stuff don’t they???) but I wanted to give a shout-out to my favorite coffee roasters!

Lyons Coffee Roasters

Kenny and Scarlett Lyons started Lyons Coffee Roasters in Florence, AL last year and they can’t keep it on the shelves!  This coffee is divine.  They only choose organic and fair-trade beans, so you can feel good about what you are enjoying!  Win-win!

Lyons Coffee Roasters

I asked Kenny if they would want to be featured here on MM.  He said he was worried that they wouldn’t be able to handle the volume of orders that might come in (bless his heart, that made my day…) but that they are in the process of building a commercial roastery that will be equipped to handle large scale orders.

Don’t you just love hearing that a small business is growing so rapidly??

Lyons Coffee Roasters

Until then, you can stop by Jack-O-Lantern Farms in Muscle Shoals, AL (yes–like the movie) and pick some up.

Lyons Coffee Roasters

Unless they’ve sold out…that tends to happen.

When they open the commercial site, we will celebrate with a giveaway

and some discounts


wait for it…


Until then, I’ll be rationing what I purchased from them.  I might share.  But you have to ask really nicely!

MM Lyons coffee

How do you take your coffee??

I take mine promptly at 7am and at 4pm.  Hehe–see what I did there?




Continuing with the introductions for the week, we have Needle’s Eye!  An embroidery/applique shop that will blow your mind.  Peggy can do just about anything with her machines.  I love seeing all of her new creations (we live next door to each other and I get to see lots of fun items come and go).  Peggy monogrammed the wedding handkerchief that Shea and I made from an old wedding dress.

MM wedding hanky 8

But from the pictures that you’ll see, she does far more than just your average monogram.  Her machines could probably monogram a mack truck if needed (every southern business woman just had a light bulb pop up on top of her perfectly coiffed head…you heard it here first)

Below I have a few pictures of fun projects that she has done over the past year.  Start thinking of the fun things you ‘need’ her to work on for you…she is offering a sweet deal!


needles eye santa hat

Needle's Eye Elsa

Needle's Eye Turkey

Needle's Eye Jacket

Needle's Eye shorts


Needle's Eye Converse

Needle's Eye Boot


Needle's Eye Tote

Needle's Eye Purse

Needle's Eye Luggage

As you can see, really about the only thing she hasn’t appliqued or monogrammed is a mack truck…  YOU CAN DO IT PEGGY!

So, now that you have all of your plain t-shirts, plain luggage, plain purses and plain wedding hankies in mind…you know you do…contact Peggy and see what fun you two can create together!

Go to her facebook business page and private message her.  Don’t forget to mention you learned about her here on McCall Manor and receive a 20% discount on your first order!!!  Prices start at $10, so you can do something right now for $8.  Can’t beat that price with a stick!

What will be your first item–shirt?  shoes?  boots?



So, I thought I would try something a little different this week.  Instead of showing you stuff that I made, I thought that I would show you some awesome items that other people have made.  AND the best part is that these things are for sale!  I love a fun handmade item that I don’t have to spend time working on and figuring out.

Let me introduce Mimi (again–you can read about her in my storitorial).  Brenda, to those of you that haven’t spent the night at her house or her ‘cramper’.  She cooks, sews, tells funny jokes, teaches pilates and has the most fabulous house you have ever laid your peeps on.

She sent me this bag:

Shea Bag for Holly

And I fell in love with it!  So I asked her if she would mind sharing her talents with you all.  Before I tell you all about the bags/products, how about I SHOW them to you.  Brenda was kind enough to snap a few pictures of different bags, bibs and pillows she has made and can make for you.

Shea bag for A

Shea bag zebra

(here is the inside of this particular bag–isn’t it just adorable???)

Shea bag inside detail

Shea bag for K

(inside of this bag, love the details!)

Shea bag inside

That was the “Shea” bag and the inside is as beautifully made as the outside.  She is selling them for $45!!  I don’t think I could even get out of the fabric store for much less than that!

Here are a some cutie pie bibs that she made, she sells them 3 for $30…these would make a wonderful baby shower gift for those of us that have big kids (waaaahhhh!)

Bibs by Brenda

Just look at these pillows that she made and personalized.  The first pillow, her husband thought it would be cool to leave the base stitching as-is.  I think it gives it a more modern look, what do you think??

S Pillow

pillow back

Don’t you love that fabric on the back?

This pillow shows the monogram completely stitched out.  It has more of a classic look and the back is a sold black fabric.

Solid S pillow

You can contact her as bgsstewart1@aol.com to start planning your custom bag, bib or pillow.  She has lots of fabric options for you to choose from.  And from now until the end of April, you can get 10% off your first order when you mention McCall Manor to her!!!

What do you think?  I am so excited that you can get to know Mimi.  She’s a hoot!



Linking to:

The Blackberry Vine  *  Polka Dots on Parade  *  The NY Melrose Family Ginger Snap Crafts Lovely Linky Ladies  *  A Little Bird Told Me  *

Hello All!

I have such a treat for you all today.  My mom is guest posting!

She is such a talented lady and I am in awe of everything she can do.  She paints, sings, plays the piano and organ (a few times she played them both at the same time…sadly, I did NOT get that gene), she has authored a book, shes a teacher, shes a public speaker…the list could go on and on.

I think she is ‘practically perfect in every way’.

She recently tackled a new project and I asked if she want to share her process with you all.  So without further ado….

This chest of drawers, purchased in a second-hand furniture store some 30 years
ago, stood in a boy’s bedroom several years before being demoted to serve in
the garage (the chest, not the boy) as a catch-all for lawn supplies, tools and
miscellaneous items.

Someday, I vowed, I would get it repaired and refinished.

2014 Dresser front before

It had good bones and was made of solid oak.

2014 Dresser top before

Someday finally came.

My friend, George, made the necessary repairs on the chest and I began planning
for its cosmetic makeover.

I love the effect of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, but unfortunately, the nearest
stockist was more than a hundred miles away. I had seen several
recipes for homemade chalk paint on Pinterest and decided to give one a try.

The recipe I chose used only the addition of Plaster of Paris and water to my
choice of paint. This has the advantage over ASCP because of the limitless range
of paint colors from which to choose, as well as ingredients being available in
the nearest local paint store. And since Plaster of Paris is very inexpensive, the
homemade version is much more affordable. (Sorry, Annie)

The recipe calls for 5 tablespoons of Plaster of Paris mixed with 2 tablespoons of
water added to 2 cups of paint. I had enough white paint left over from another
project for the job. Mine was semi-gloss latex, but flat or eggshell will work just as

I found the Plaster of Paris at our local lumber company, costing about $3.00 for a
4.4-pound carton. So after using 5 tablespoons of it, one could use the extra 4.39
pounds to patch walls or make a fresco on the ceiling, a ´la Michelangelo.

This mixture was to be strained to make certain it was free of any lumps. I
mentioned to the clerk that I would need to find a cheap strainer, and lo and
behold, they sell disposable paint strainers. Who knew! So I bought a package of

2014 dresser plaster of paris

I used an empty milk jug, cut down, leaving a handy handle, for mixing and
holding the paint. Starting with the Plaster of Paris, I gradually added the water
to mix a paste in much the same way I would mix flour and liquid to make gravy.

Then I added the paint and mixed well.

2014 dresser, mlk jug

Chalk paint eliminates the need for sanding and priming, but since I was painting
very old furniture where stain has a tendency to seep through, I chose to prime it
with Kilz 2, which I had left over from another project. (You’ll notice I don’t throw
away leftover paint at least until it has solidified in the can.)

2014 Dresser with Kilz

Turns out it was a good thing I primed it, as it took three coats of Kilz to kill
the stain. After that dried, one coat of homemade chalk paint was sufficient to
topcoat it.

Pinterest also influenced my decorating choice. I saw several gold-dipped
pieces, where the lower few inches of table legs were painted gold.

And, since I love the popular bird silhouette motif, I opted to paint a design similar

to one found on this blog:

Yes, I copied it, but imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, or so they say.
I ordered Rustoleum Painter’s Touch gold metallic paint from Home Depot. This is
oil-based and must be cleaned up with mineral spirits.

2014 dresser, gold paint

I painted the legs and the trim between the drawers.

2014 Dresser gold trim

For the design, I used blue paint I had (ahem) left over from painting the bedroom
walls a few years ago and then added my own touch of gold to the design.

2014 dresser detail, after

Now this chest of drawers is all dressed up and ready for a new life out of the
garage and back inside the house. (And I have enough leftover gold paint to gild
that fresco on the ceiling.)

Gold-dipped dresser with homemade chalk paint

See what I mean about my mom?  Isn’t she awesome!



Linking to:

Miss Mustard Seed  *  Southern Savvy Style  *  Ginger Snap Crafts  *  Lovely Linky Ladies  *  A Little Bird Told Me  *  Homeroad  *