How to Make a Bike Flower Planter

Way back in the day, Mike and I used to ride bikes. Like, before we had to hook up trailers and baby seats and extra snacks and sips of water and favorite stuffed animals and all that. I had this cute little yellow road bike that Mike picked up somewhere, and we would just flirt around campus together. So cute.

That hunk of metal has been sitting in our garage for six years just rusting to bits now. And no, that is not a metaphor for our marriage. That is doing just wonderfully, thankyouverymuch.

I’ve been bugging Mike to help me turn it into a bike planter for years, and this year he finally conceded that no one was going to buy it, and I should just have at it.

Wire cutters, please.

Learn how to make a DIY bike flower planter on a Saturday. This project was so easy, and the payout was huge! I actually have people stopping by my house to take photographs of the bicycle.

It was so easy. The hardest part was just getting started. Once I was in it, I was IN it, baby. This was fun!

Want to make your own? Here is how I did it:

How to Make a Bike Flower Planter

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Find an old bike that you like. This is a road bike, but you could use any kind you like as long as you dig the silhouette of it. Pay attention to handlebar shape, men’s vs. women’s styles, and other details you prefer.

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Clean up that hunk of metal.

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Get some sharp wire cutters and start clipping off everything that hangs. The breaks are really going to be the main job.

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I also took off any tape or materials that wouldn’t look great covered in spray paint.

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Then, I thought I could just cut off the rubber tires, but it turns out, on my bike, the tires had a metal rim inside the rubber. Instead, I just had Mike remove the entire wheel on both back and front, then removed the rubber afterwards.

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Use plastic grocery bags and painters tape to cover any parts of the bike you do not want to paint.

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I chose silver because I wanted the bike to have a cohesive and more neutral look. I love the idea of white, but white bikes are commonly used to pay respect to bikers who lost their lives on the road. I didn’t want that confusion. Another thing to consider: do you want just the frame to be painted while leaving the hardware silver? Do you want to paint everything to make it look like more of an art piece? Do you want to leave it as is for a “found” look? And, whatever paint you do decide on, make sure it is good for outdoor use. (And, obviously, at this point, we have reattached the wheels.)

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Grab at least two baskets and line them with plastic bags. I poked holes all over the bags to create drainage. Then, fill the bag lined baskets with potting soil and the plants of your choice. I prefer plants that tend to creep and crawl and hang and get really big and out of control. It makes the whole thing look so lush!

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Attach your baskets with zip ties. I added my baskets to the front and back, but I have also seen them added to the handlebars, crossbar, and wheels. Whatever look you prefer!

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Baskets attached. Scored these at a garage sale.

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To secure your bike, place it in its final location and use the kickstand to hold it up. You may need to place a flat rock under the kickstand to keep the bike from leaning too far to the side.

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We used some U shaped metal anchors to secure the front and back tires into the grass. This bike isn’t going to withstand a tornado, but a heavy rain or a bumbling toddler shouldn’t bother it too much.

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My raised beds are doing SO WELL this year. I mean, more than we could ever eat. The neighbors are sick of our salads. This pic is from right when the little seeds were starting to sprout. Aw.

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I liked the addition of the herb pot next to it just to give a little balance.

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El fin.

 

So there you have it: How to Make a Bike Flower Planter. It took us a couple of afternoons between disassembling, painting and drying, reassembling and placing it…and photographing the whole process…ahem. Without little kids underfoot and an entire day at your disposal, you could easily do this on a Saturday.

Let me know below if you have any questions. xx

Should Catholic Makers Share Their Business Secrets?

You put hours of work and research into your crafts, and then someone emails you with, “Could you share how you make your product?” What is the Catholic answer to this situation? It might be a little different than your instinct.

Like most things in life, I don’t think there is a prescriptive “Catholic” answer to situations like this. Womp womp. So, I decided to ask my husband, and he came up with some bangers.

You put hours of work and research into your crafts, and then someone emails you with, “Could you share how you make your product?” What is the Catholic answer to this situation? It might be a little different than your instinct. | diy | diy crafts | life hacks | etsy tips

photo credit | dollar photo club | nikolaydonetsk

So, Mike’s company makes parts for planes that are often used in combat. It is a top secret 007 facility, so they don’t share industry secrets because it is a matter of national security (much fancy). The processes of his company also create jobs for thousands of people, so sharing those things would eliminate the livelihood of tons of people.

Those reasons seem pretty obvious. If it is a matter of security or livelihood for your family or business, then, no, it might actually be wrong to share your secrets.

What about something with lower stakes like personal recipes? If a friend asked you for your recipe at a potluck, 99% of time you would share it. But maybe you don’t want to share your secret sauce because it is special to you – it makes you stand out. And that’s ok to keep it to yourself.

Is what you’re doing something very special to you that makes you unique? In this case, you can choose whether or not to share, and either way is equally fine.

Sometimes the info that you’re being asked for can easily be looked up; it might be public knowledge. While it may be annoying to have to answer these questions for someone when you took the time to figure it all out yourself, the charitable thing may be to share the information or point the person in the right direction to finding it.

Then again, the time that you put into research and development is part of the product cost. If the hours that you put into trial and error and picking and choosing is integral to the quality of your product, sharing might jeopardize that.

Think about the goal of your business. Is it to help humanity in some way? The CEO of Tesla, Elon Musk, put it this way: “If we’re all in a ship together, and the ship has some holes in it, and we’re sort of bailing water out of it, and we have a great design for a bucket, then even if we’re bailing out way better than everyone else, we should probably still share the bucket design.”

But maybe your goal is to make some extra money for your family. Is divulging information about your craft going to dilute the field and take away from your income? Or perhaps you just create for fun, and there is no consequence for giving up that knowledge.

In the end, whatever you decide, you do need to respond to inquiries in a Catholic way. It ends up being more about why you choose whether or not to share trade secrets and how you go about interacting with the person asking.

Has this ever happened to you? What was your response?

Check out my shop for your embroidery needs and anxiety remedies.

30 Days to Calm Book Tour

You don’t have to worry about if I’m coming to a city near you, because you can join this tour from your comfy couch in your active wear.

preorder

Each day, a new lady will be telling you her opiniones honestos about 30 Days to Calm. The schedule looks like this:

Monday: Jenny from Mama Needs Coffee
Tuesday: Mary from Passionate Perseverance
Wednesday: Rachel from Efficient Mama
Thursday: Dwija from House Unseen, Life Unscripted
Friday: Nell from Whole Parenting Family (+ giveaway!!!)

Check back each day for the link to the next locale. And, if you want to preorder a copy right now, head over to my Etsy shop to do just that. If you preorder, you can take advantage of the sale price. I’m a sucker for sales.

And, for el fin, a big thanks to the Holy Spirit for pulling all of this out of me. It wasn’t me. It wasn’t me. It wasn’t me.

Preorder your copy of 30 Days to Calm!

Preorder My Book

Yep. I said it.

preorder

My book is officially available for preorder. And, for right now, it is at a special reduced preorder price which you’re probably going to want to take advantage of before it goes back to el normal.

Well, what are you waiting for? Hop to it.

Wait.

One more thing: if you share this post or my book listing from Etsy encouraging people to purchase, I will give you a coupon code for $1 off the discounted price. Just email me the link to your post, and I will send you the secret code to use at checkout.

Ready? Set? Go.

 

I wrote a book.

Ok, it’s more of a journal, really. But if I titled this, “I wrote a journal,” you’d be like, “Oh, LiveJournal is still a thing?” and then you’d be all sorts of confused…as if you’re not already.

Moving on.

So, I wrote this journal called 30 Days to Calm: Create Your Own Anxiety Toolbox, and I hope to have it ready for purchase before Christmas.

30 Days to Calm: Create Your Own Anxiety Toolbox

What is it about?

Here’s a little excerpt from the journal:

This journal is designed for use over the course of one month. Take it more slowly if need be. Just don’t try to rush through it. Instead, each day read the tip or tool. Then use the space provided to answer the journal prompt. The prompts are designed to help you practice your new skills, reflect on your current beliefs, and ignite new ideas to help yourself.

Each tip builds upon the next, meaning it is designed to be carried forward and practiced the next day. I encourage you to try to think of each tool as a new habit. Then, incorporate the ones that work; forget the ones that don’t. Just be consistent in your practice of the ones you keep.

By the end of thirty days, you will have a whole new set of skills on hand during times of anxiety and stress. Save this book as a reminder of what you have learned along the way. Reference it when needed. It is your toolbox.

Who is it for?

This journal is for anyone who has chronic stress, suffers from generalized anxiety, has panic attacks, or has any combination of those maladies. While I wrote it from my perspective (a woman, a mother, a Catholic), I truly believe that the tips and prompts are valuable for people of all walks of life.

I say things like “walks of life” now.

Three Ways You Can Help

The next step is actually printing these babies o’ mine. And, that is where you can help:

  • I need prayers that this project will be successful and fruitful for all who are in contact with it
  • I’d love you to share this idea with your social media circles
  • Fund the Kickstarter campaign: any amount (even a dollar!) is so incredibly helpful!

As soon as I hit the $700 funding goal, I can start taking orders and getting this journal out to those who might need it.

Thank you to everyone who has already supported me in these ways. You’re not just helping me – you’re helping anyone that is dealing with anxiety and panic in their lives. Muah!

Back This Project on Kickstarter

How to Make a Spiritual Bouquet

I am always so excited when Kelly comes to visit; I feel like I have a rock star over. And, today she is playing teacher by showing us how to make a spiritual bouquet. I may need one or 77 of these to make it through this first trimester.

There are lots of spiritual bouquet ideas out there, but this simple craft for kids (or adults!) is a physical gift you can give to someone in need. It combines the gift of prayer and an easy DIY craft. There is even a template provided!

© daffodilred / Dollar Photo Club

I’m happy to be here at Jenna’s today with a craft idea that is totally doable for little hands, yet enjoyable for older kids too. Learning how to make a spiritual bouquet card becomes a great little gift for name days, baptisms and a slew of other Holy Days that deserve recognition but not necessarily a gift.

Although less common than they once were, spiritual bouquets have traditionally been given to commemorate a special occasion. Have you ever sent a Mass card? It’s the same idea, except instead of a gift of a Mass, you’re giving the gift of a rosary, a novena, or for young children individual Hail Marys, Our Fathers and other simple prayers for a specific person or his or her intentions.

This simple flower bouquet is something kids can say “I made it myself!” and proudly give, rather than just signing their name to the Hallmark card Mom picked out. And most importantly, learning how to make a spiritual bouquet can help teach basic prayers and instill early on the importance of performing spiritual works of mercy. Plus it’s cute! Who wouldn’t love a fist of these shoved in their face?

There are lots of spiritual bouquet ideas out there, but this simple craft for kids (or adults!) is a physical gift you can give to someone in need. It combines the gift of prayer and an easy DIY craft. There is even a template provided!

Oh, apparently my own daughter. Please don’t let this deter you.

How to Make a Spiritual Bouquet

Supplies:
Construction paper
Flower Template from Lorine Mason Designs. Print at 200%
Scissors
Markers
Hole punch
Pipe Cleaners

If your children are young, you can pre-cut the flower shapes for them from colored construction paper, or let them color in petals and leaves cut from white paper. Another option is to take an existing drawing and cut the flower from it. (Seriously, you know you have more art than you know what to do with.)

There are lots of spiritual bouquet ideas out there, but this simple craft for kids (or adults!) is a physical gift you can give to someone in need. It combines the gift of prayer and an easy DIY craft. There is even a template provided!

There are lots of spiritual bouquet ideas out there, but this simple craft for kids (or adults!) is a physical gift you can give to someone in need. It combines the gift of prayer and an easy DIY craft. There is even a template provided!

Your prayers can be written on the petals of the flower, or on the leaf. Another idea is to give a bunch of small flowers with each color flower representing a specific prayers. (For example, ten blue flowers for the Hail Marys, one red Our Father and one yellow Glory Be for a decade of the rosary.)

There are lots of spiritual bouquet ideas out there, but this simple craft for kids (or adults!) is a physical gift you can give to someone in need. It combines the gift of prayer and an easy DIY craft. There is even a template provided!

For the stem, punch two holes into the center of the flower and weave a pipe cleaner through and fasten at the top, behind the flower. Cut two slits into the leaf and slide up from the bottom.

Viola! Easy peasey!

There are lots of spiritual bouquet ideas out there, but this simple craft for kids (or adults!) is a physical gift you can give to someone in need. It combines the gift of prayer and an easy DIY craft. There is even a template provided!

Older kids who want to ratchet up the wow factor, might prefer making more complex tissue paper flowers. Spoonful has a good basic tutorial. A small tag affixed to the flowers can list the prayers and, bonus! serve as a homeschool writing assignment (if you’re so inclined.)

There are lots of spiritual bouquet ideas out there, but this simple craft for kids (or adults!) is a physical gift you can give to someone in need. It combines the gift of prayer and an easy DIY craft. There is even a template provided!

Look at that. You learned how to make a spiritual bouquet. Finally a craft even young children can make on their own that makes a nice gift, without the use of ANY glitter. Bring on the next feast day or holiday! You’re welcome.

Kelly rode in on her valiant steed and saved this first trimester mom from posting something titled Watch Me Sleep: a vlog! I suppose maybe all y’all should thank her for teaching us how to make a spiritual bouquet because she rescued us all from that horrible fate. Thanks, Kelly friend! You are truly a wonderful mother that I look up to.

 

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Shop Call Her Happy on Etsy

Das right.

I opened up an Etsy shop featuring tiny little embroidery hoop necklaces. Right now, I am offering french dots, bees, dandelions, bows, monograms and lavender. Spring stuff.

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But, I am also looking into doing bigger pieces, and I am always willing to do a custom piece of any size for ya. Just let me know.

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some pieces I made for Kelly and Grace

Giveaway

In honor of the launch, I am running a giveaway on Instagram. Head over and enter to win a little cutie of your choice. Ends 3/19.

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More Embroidery Goodness

 

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway. Don’t. Forget.

 

Call Her Happy Spring Stitch-a-Long Details {Succulent Embroidery Pattern}

It’s the first ever Call Her Happy Stitch-a-long! I’m hoping to cover all of your question bases here, but if I leave something out, let me know. It’s going to be super easy and laid back, just like me…minus the easy part.

Free succulents embroidery pattern for an easy summer DIY handstitching project. This succulent garden is the most relaxing project! |embroidery ideas | embroidery patterns | embroidery design | DIY crafts | succulents DIY

What is a Stitch-a-Long?

A group of people embroidering from the same pattern under a loose timeline in order to gawk at each other’s interpretations of the piece. It’s just for fun, so don’t be so uptight about it. Stop freaking out!

Learn how to embroider here.

How do I participate?

Super simple: I will provide a pattern that all participants will use. Download and transfer the pattern (the whole design, the parts you like or modify it and make it your own), then start stitching. Choose whatever colors, fabric and types of stitches you like. Make it as big or little as you want. Stitch it on something you will use or just do it on scrap fabric for fun.

And along the way, upload pictures of your progress to Instagram with #callherhappystitchalong. If you don’t have Instagram, post your pics on Facebook, Twitter or your blog. Make sure you share the link and/or use the hashtag so we can see your work.

We’ll run the stitch-a-long through the end of May, and then I will try to put up a post featuring some of your designs – maybe drive some traffic to your blog if you have one. If we like how this goes, I’ll set up another one for Summer. If we don’t, we can pretend this never happened.

The Succulent Embroidery Pattern

I drew up this succulent embroidery pattern a few weeks back for a tutorial I was doing. I just love this pattern so much, but I haven’t had a chance to stitch it up, so I’m going to do it with you.

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update: (coming soon) visit my Etsy shop to access this pattern!

If you finish this guy, and you want more, try out my Lenten Embroidery Prayer Pattern at CatholicMom.com. AND, if you made it this far down the post, here is a little insider info for you:

I just launched my Etsy shop.

I’ll write up a post on it, like, tomorrow, but if you want to peek around right now, feel freeeeeee.

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Adorbs (Are we still saying that?) Felt Bandaid Tutorial

I don’t want to point fingers or anything, but my hiatus this week was completely Sam’s fault. I guess I did want to point fingers. That felt good.

the culprit

the culprit

See, my computer quit charging last week, so I took it in and they said that the cable was fried. They said it looked like some liquid got in between the charger and the charging hole thingy. Suddenly, my mind flashed back to earlier that day when I caught Sam with the charging cable in his mouth having a little old Apple snack. I yanked it from him and plugged it right back in. Zap.

I’ll add that to the growing list of things I’ve pulled out of Sam’s mouth this week: chalk, dirt, a Hello Kitty hair clip, a piece of our keyboard, a hairball, a sticker and countless other things that I never fully retrieved.

But you didn’t come here for that. If you did, how about taking up a hobby…like embroidery.

Segue way.

So, yesterday morning, Ellen was playing doctor and asked for a bandaid. I figured Sam would just eat it, so I decided to make her one that she could reuse. And it’s adorable. After I gave it to her, she said, “Thanks, can you make me three more?”

Materials:
tan felt
red, white and tan embroidery floss
embroidery hoop and needles

bandaid

1. Hoop up your felt and draw out the shape of a bandaid. Mine was about 2.5 in.
2. Stitch a red heart in the middle. I used a backstitch and a satin stitch. I also used all 6 strands.
3. Use white french knots to add the dots on the sides on the heart. 6 strands again.
4. Unhoop the felt and fold in half. Cut out the bandaid but leave the bottom edge uncut. Then there is less to sew back up.
5. Fold the bandaid in half and use the tan thread (3 strands this time) to buttonhole stitch the bandaid together.

No, it doesn’t stick to anything, but isn’t that the beauty of it? I had the great pleasure of scraping a Sponge Bob sticker off of our wood trim this afternoon. Ellen hasn’t even seen the show before, but she loves the stickers because she loves “the big piece of cheese.”

And, for those of you keeping track, yes, I did say I would have stitch-a-long information up this past Monday, but didn’t you hear me when I said my computer broke?

Next week. Swears.

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Embroidery Along: Maybe I Will Count This

Maybe I will count this as today’s post. We will see. It all depends on if I can get my creative on and finish up a little diddy I have in the works for all y’all. Talk about planning ahead!

No, seriously. Talk about it. Apparently I need a lesson.

Anyway, the hope is that I can get a little embroidery along going for you. By now, you should have finished your Quilts of Valor piece if you were stitching with Cari (ahem, Cari, I’m looking at you). So, you probably need something else to stitch because you’re hooked, right? Wanna know what we’re gonna do – if you’re up for it?

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Then hang tight. Let me sharpen my pencils and do a little sketchy sketch for you, and I will get back with you soon. Get your needles ready, old ladies. And, let me know if you’re in.

xo

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