Painted white GRATITUDE pumpkins

As Thanksgiving is closely approaching, and the spirit of Christmas has already hit me (falling snow and pandora's Christmas station have helped with that:) ), I have been feeling especially grateful and thankful these past few weeks for the MANY blessings I have in my life. When I first started this 'pumpkin craft', it was just a simple attempt to cutesy up two boring, clearenced out pumpkins. After 2 weeks of being stuck in a creative funk I came out the other side with a project that holds SO much meaning to me. Love that!

Buuuuut, lets not get ahead of ourselves! We should start at the beginning...with these two orange pumpkins I picked up for .50 each at Walmart last year after Thanksgiving.

Although I'm ALL about the traditional colors for Thanksgiving/Fall, this year I'm really loving the simplicity and elegance of white pumpkins and have been wanting to add some to my decorations but didn't want to have to pay the $15+ dollars the stores were asking for them so I knew right away that I wanted to paint them white.

I gave them 2 generous coats of Rustoleum's Heirloom white.

I was hesitant to spray paint them for fear of getting drip streaks down them, so I was pleasantly SURPRISED when there were NO drips-yay for no re-painting!

They sat like that out on my counter for over a week because I couldn't decide what I wanted to do with them. I debated on leaving them as is, just simple, white and subtle but that just didn't feel right! I was just stuck.
I looked online for some white pumpkin decorating ideas and nothing really fit what I was looking for so they just sat. Pretty and undisturbed. And then while walking around Michelas I saw some rhinestone bling and my creative mind started to thunk and my crafty heart started to beat. Disturbia was coming these punkins way. First I added some white rhinestone stickers on top around the stem. (They come as one large sticker-from Micheals-so I just cut the one up to make enough to go around the top)

I loved my pretty cinderella pumpkins (at this point they reminded me of cinderella's carriage :) ), but it still didn't feel 100% finished. I love decorating with words/quotes/sayings that mean something to me and can remind myself and my family of what's truly important, so I decided to add some simple words to them.
I searched online for a short, simple quote that would involve the word gratitude, for the season. I used my cricut to cut the quote out of brown vinyl and just stuck it right onto the pumpkin. (if you don't have a cutting machine you could use scrapbook stickers!!)

As soon as I read this quote I immediately started to tear up. (This quote has been all over blogland since it was featured on TT&J but I'm pretty proud to say I found it -NOT on pinterest :)-AND printed it before it was popular!...I'm proud of this because I'm always behind on the trends!!!)

Turns what we have

The past 3 years for our family have been challenging, trying, exhausting and FULL of happiness and blessings. My husband is in his final year of school (can I get a halleluiah?!) so between school, work, having and raising 2 kids, moving from apartment to apartment, fulfilling church responsibilities, and just LIFE ups and downs, we have had some financial strains, housing strains, and BIG emotional strains :), but we always come out of our struggles
BETTER for having gone through them.
We have always had a roof over our heads (sometimes a moldy, falling through roof, but always a roof :) ), food on the table, clothes on our backs, one car that gets us everywhere we need to go, and LOTS of laughs, hugs, and arms to bear one another up. And it was always enough.

Mr. Sweet Love's been a student for longer than 3 years, but it's the past 3 that have been especially hard. Gratitude and counting our blessings is what has pulled us through. Every. Single. Time.

At the end of the day, as we kneel down and pray as a family together we always, always have a list of things we can thank our Father in Heaven for. That Gratitude turns what we have into enough. And we have been truly happy.

I think I was touched so much when I first read it because it was like these 7 words summed up everything I've been feeling, thinking, and trying to explain for SO many years. Every fall as I pull out these pumpkins, no matter how monetarily rich or poor we are that year, I will KNOW it's enough and even more importantly, I will remember this time period in our lives and how blessed we were.

Even if you have to start by giving thanks out of obligation, or force yourself to make a list and be happy for what you works! It really does make you genuinely happy!!!

Thanks for bearing with me through that looooong post and sharing a little bit of my personal life with me today! I'll be back tomorrow to share my newest felt wreath! ;)
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