Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Part 5: Scripture Card Mini Clipboards

God's Words to Read:

I meditate on your precepts
   and consider your ways.
I delight in your decrees;
   I will not neglect your word.

~Psalm 119:15-16

In my third post last year of a series I started writing called "Spend More Time with God", I shared about how I write Bible verses I want to memorize on index cards and tape them up in certain well-frequented areas in my house where I can see them often to aid in memorization.  Although having white index cards taped up all over your home can be helpful to your Scripture memorization efforts, unfortunately, they're not very pretty.  I knew there had to be a more attractive, decor-friendly way to display my Scripture cards, but I just had no idea or inspiration of how to go about this.  So for years I've had white cards taped up by my kitchen and bathroom sinks.  Boring.  Kind of messy-looking.  Not a good thing for this clean freak momma.

So while I was in deep thought and prayer about writing this series on what I do for my personal devotions and spiritual growth, I experienced a moment of sheer creativity (which rarely happens to me since I'm not very artistic, so once I got over the shock I went with it!).  Here was my creative inspiration:  what about using mod-podged mini clipboards to display the verse cards?  Eureka!

Of course I immediately got busy shopping for supplies. I found 2 plain hardboard mini clipboards at Menards - each for just over $1 (I'm telling you, you save big money there).  Add in a bottle of Mod Podge, a few sheets of pretty scrapbook paper, some coordinating ribbon, a sea shell (Say what? You'll see...), a small 3M Command wall hook, and a small suction cup hook.  And now I have 2 very cute Scripture card clipboards that match my bathroom and kitchen decor!

What follows is how I made my very own mod podge clipboards.  I found instructions online for mod-podging clipboards at two different sites (Small Family Big World and Echos of Laughter ), but incorporated the instructions from both and made some adjustments to create my own.

You will need:

- mini clipboard
- scrapbook paper
- Mod Podge
- paint brush or sponge
- scissors
- X-Acto knife or box cutter
- pencil
- newspaper or other table cover
- 3M Command wall hook or suction cup hook (for hanging on mirror or window)
- embellishments (optional)
- glue/hot glue

Step 1:
On the back side of the scrapbook paper, trace around the clipboard.

Step 2:
Cut diagonal slits from each corner of paper all the way to each corner of traced section.

Yes, if you couldn't tell by now, I'm left-handed.  Please refrain from all left-hander jokes at this time, thank you.  I've heard them all by now anyway.  You try to sit in a school desk that has the attached writing table only on the right side.  Or have random people comment on your left-handedness nearly every time you write in public.  Like, wow, it's really that noteworthy.  Oops, sorry, a little sensitive about it.  But you know you noticed it and would have commented on it had we been together in person while I was cutting.  That is, unless you too are left-handed and then it just looks normal.

When you're done cutting the corner slits, your paper should look like this.
Step 3:
Lay back side of paper over the top of clipboard and using X-Acto knife or box cutter, cut around the clip part of board.  Also cut off the very top middle part of paper above clip part.

Please notice I put the box cutter on the right side for this photo to be fair and give visual aid to all you right-handers out there.

Now the back side of your paper should look like this.

And this photo shows what the cut-out part of the front side should look like, so that it will snugly fit around the clip.
Step 4:
Okay, now you're ready to mod podge.  Yay! Open a window, though.  It has a strong smell and I'm not so sure how good it is for the old brain cells.

First, coat the top of the clipboard with a layer of mod podge.  Remember to protect your table surface.  Mod Podge is really hard to wash off (learned that from experience, folks)!

Step 5:
Then quickly paint a coat of mod podge on the back of the scrapbook paper and gently press on the top of clipboard, carefully pulling the sides of paper around to the back of clipboard.  Press paper down on all sides of clipboard, gently smoothing out wrinkles.

Step 6:
Next, gently paint on 1-2 coats of mod podge over the scrapbook paper on the top, sides, and back of the clip board.  If doing 2 coats, let dry for about 15 minutes between coats.

This yellow clipboard is for my kitchen.  Pretty!  I love tone-on-tone patterns.

Step 7:
Embellish!  I glued on some coordinating ribbon.  Make sure to wrap it around the sides of the clipboard, gluing all the way around to the back.

I also tied a little ribbon to the clip.  Adds a little extra flair, don't you think?

I wanted to fit 2 verse cards on this clipboard, so I found these amazing sticky note holders at the local teacher's supply store.  They have an adhesive side on the back that sticks to just about any surface and is completely removable and re-adjustable.  And they are designed to hold up a piece of paper as thin as notebook or printer paper, or as thick as cardstock.  Love!  What will they think of next?

Step 8:
Hang it up where you'll see it often!  I hung up my kitchen clipboard with a 3M Command hook next to the sink, where I can easily read it while doing one of my most dreaded and never-ever-ending chores:  dish washing.

Yellow and green are such happy colors.  Perfect for the kitchen where I spend countless minutes each day (and not always happily enjoying what I'm doing in there!).

Now for my beach-themed master bathroom clipboard, I used 2 pieces of scrapbook paper - one is ocean waves (or lake waves!  I'm a big Lake Michigan lover!) and the other is a sandy beach.  I mod-podged the waves paper over the clipboard first.  Then cut a bottom section out of the sandy beach paper.

I mod-podged the beach paper over the bottom of the clipboard until it looked like...

THIS!  Cute, or what?

Then I glued on a sea shell my mom brought me back from a recent trip to Myrtle Beach.

Now, simply add a Scripture card...

Hang it up on the bathroom mirror with a suction cup hook and viola!  You are ready to memorize and meditate on a favorite verse while you floss your teeth!  But watch out for flying floss shrapnel.  You don't want to get your pretty Scripture card clipboard dirty.

I guess I'm not as artistically-challenged as I had previously thought.  Wonders never cease.

So, what do you think?  Are you going to make a Scripture card mini clipboard like mine or do you have any other creative display ideas to share?  I'd love to hear about it!  Please share in the Comments section below!

In Christ,


Tuesday, July 2, 2013

My Bible Basket

God's Words:

I meditate on your precepts and consider your ways.  I delight in your decrees, I will not neglect your word...I will obey your word.  Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law.
~Psalm 119:15, 16, 17b, and 18

I try to have "quiet time" with God most days of the week.  This is when I read a little from His Word, spend some time in prayer and quiet reflection on what I've just read.  And maybe pray about the other prayer requests that are on my heart.  Some days it might only be 5 minutes; others a half hour or longer, but those are the rare days. And regretfully, of course there are the days when I don't make time for devotions.  Those are the days that tend to end up not being so good and I look back and think, well duh!

Since I am a stay-at-home, homeschool mom of three rather loud and exceptionally busy children, you are probably guessing that there isn't much "quiet time" available at our house.  Well, my friend, you are correct!  I usually find myself having to steal away somewhere that happens to be peaceful for the moment (sometimes this requires shutting/locking the door to keep the kids and my tag-along dog out).  It's all very random, time-wise and location-wise.  I never really know where I'll be for my next quiet time.  But you know me, I just live for spontaneity!  Not.

That's why I put together my "Bible Basket" so when I finally find a few minutes of peace, I can very easily and quickly grab everything I need for my devotional time and go get to it before the peacefulness is invaded once again!  Isn't it cute?  And notice the handle, so it's very mobile and, well...handy!

In my Bible Basket I keep my really, super-old, falling-apart NIV Student Bible that I've had since I was a senior in high school (please don't even try to estimate how many years ago that was, ok? I'm getting to be age-sensitive as of late).  But I love my personal Bible and just can't bear to part with it.  It has every precious highlight, note, and mark that I've made over the years since my young adult days.  Sure, you'll find that some pages appear to be completely highlighted, but each verse means something special to me!

Also in my Bible Basket are my Scripture Card File, Bible Study & Prayer Journal, and a pencil pouch with extra highlighters, pens, and pencils (ok, am I the only person that seriously loves the term "pencil pouch"?  It must stem from my adoration of school supplies).

I store my Bible Basket in my bedroom, so one day last year I decided I should decorate it to match the decor in there.  Hence the blue and green color scheme.  I found the ribbons at Hobby Lobby. LOVE that store.  Someone please help me not go there so often.  My son hates being "dragged through that place".  Hahaha.  Get ready, buddy.  Your future wife is going to love going there, too. It's a girl thang!

Some mornings I wake up before everyone else in the family and spend that precious time of tranquility communicating with my Heavenly Father.  I grab a cup of Joe and get comfy on the sofa.  I just have to make mention here that I am not a morning person, so this is very out of the ordinary at this point in my life.  Someday I might turn into an early bird, like my mom did after my siblings and I all moved out. Hmmm, we must have really tired her out every day! Now she gets an amazing amount of things done each day; especially her extensive personal Bible study.  I need to start getting up earlier...

Most of the time I enjoy doing devotions in the peacefulness of my cozy bedroom.  Either before we start our schoolwork or activities for the day or once we're finally done with the busyness of the morning. Then the kids are off doing whatever they do when mom's not making them do schoolwork or chores. Sure, they might be making noise and quarreling amongst themselves, but that's when I make use of the door, and possibly its locking mechanism.  They know that if they knock and I say I'm doing my quiet time, that it's wise to back off and hush up for a few minutes.  Happy mom, happy life, people.  They really respect my need and desire for alone time with God. It warms my heart that they truly understand this.

But other times, I like to read my Bible while I enjoy a quick bite of breakfast or lunch. Nothing better than feeding your body and soul at the same time! And that's what I call multi-tasking.  What we moms do best!

On days when I have some writing to do or online devotions to read and need my Bible handy, it's so nice to be able to quickly grab my basket and have it nearby my desk.

While looking through the photos of "Where is Suzy's Bible Basket Now?", did you also happen to notice the other item that is always present?  Did you find it?  I admit to maybe having read too many search-and-find books like Where's Waldo? with my kids over the years...  Hint:  I love coffee!

Anyway, I just thought I'd share how I do my quiet time and keep my devotional stuff all together, in case you also struggle with managing to steal away for your alone time with God.  What do you do for your quiet time?

In Christ,