Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Ribbon Ceiling Medallion Tutorial



My daughter's room has been an ongoing project and I knew I wanted a little something special to put in there with a message from me to bring her heart joy. I truly believe little messages and sayings throughout the home really set the tone of the home. 

I bought a chandelier a while ago and kept seeing adorable ceiling medallions but they were over the top expensive, and I knew I could make one myself and personalize it with a message that I wanted to say to her. 

I love Ribbon, I think it adds so much fun and dimension to different projects. 

Here's what you need to make your own Ribbon Ceiling Medallion: 


Supplies:

16" ceiling medallion (this size is perfect for a smaller fixture) 
Gold Paint
Foam Paintbrush
Hot Glue Gun & Hot Gluesticks
Needle & Thread
Scissors
Washable Marker

Paint the medallion. With the metallic paint I chose, it took several coats of paint but the end result is so perfect it was worth the time. Let your paint sit between coats. I admit, I had to whip out the blow dryer towards the end because I was so excited to get the rest of my project going! 


While the paint is drying on your medallion, gather the supplies for your ribbon flowers. This is where I used the Pearlies, Pearl Flowers and Spooled Ruffle Ribbon. 

These ribbon flowers were so easy to make! I cut about 24 inches of ribbon and then simply gather stitched right above the bottom ruffle. You can see what that looks like in the picture below. As you stitch, the ribbon will gather itself and start to spiral which is perfect for the flower shape. I fastened the ribbon in a few places with a small amount of hot glue to make sure it kept its shape. 



Once I had the flower base, I glued the Pearl Flower directly to the middle of it. I think this flower would be DARLING as a bow for a little girls' hair. So I made a few more just for my daughter. If you'd like to turn it into a bow you could either glue or hand sew it to an alligator clip and voila! You have a classy bow for a little girl, or even for you! 


Once the medallion is completely dry, layout your design. I set my flowers on first and added a couple of petite lace leaves to two of my ribbon flowers. Grab your Dainty Lace and start spelling out your word. I wanted mine to say "Sweet Dreams" but you could personalize it with a name or special saying. I fastened the letters with hot glue as I went. 


To add more dimension use another type of lace or ribbon for the second word, or even each letter. I used the lavender petite lace. Since I was using cursive with it, I used a washable marker to give myself a guide. You could start out with the washable marker as a guide from the beginning, though I'd recommend using a lighter color marker.  


Often times you learn as you go so I learned some lessons for you! The petite lace was a little too thick to pull off cursive but I loved the trim around the edges, so I just used that. This lace has some stretch to it which is perfect for the curves in my letters. 


This step is where you get up close and personal with your glue gun. If you don't have a high tolerance for the glue, I'd recommend using the tip of a chopstick to avoid burns. Trace the lines you wrote with your glue then fasten the ribbon to it. 


Once you've finished all of your ribbon writing, attach your Ribbon Flowers and that's it! You've got yourself a Ribbon Ceiling Medallion! 


All that is left is for you to install your medallion, I think it is the perfect addition to any little girls' room and it has a sweet message from you. There's something special about crafts from the heart and this is one of them!

You guys, this is one of my favorite projects! I love snuggling with her after bedtime stories and looking up at her pretty chandelier complete with a love note from Mamma.

Another cute saying I thought of would be "To the moon", short for "I love you to the moon and back."
Or even simply, "I love you."
What would you write to share joy if you made one?

If you'd like to see Part I of her room makeover, click here

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Friday, April 21, 2017

My Purpose. My Why.

As most of you know, I'm at SNAP Conference this year. 
To be honest, I felt kind of silly coming at first. I mean, my last blog post was back in December and I'd been hit or miss before that. 
I wasn't sure why I decided to go. Mainly it was for girl time with Lindsay
But there was something deeper. 
A pull. 
I felt like SNAP would help me figure my whole blog out. 
I knew it was definitely time to "rebrand" as they say. 
To redefine what my blog was about because truthfully, I have been redefined. 
But into what?! 
So with a prayer in my heart that God would help me find my focus and use me as an instrument in His hands. I came. 

Within moments I knew. It was a pull that I knew was inspired. 
A role I am meant to fulfill. 
And this card is what started it all...


I bet you're waiting for me to get to the point right? 
Well I'm getting there! 
See these kids? I almost lost them. 
They are my everything. 


Cancer tried to take that from me. 
But through cancer I realized a key lesson. 
Find JOY in the Journey. 

Now here's what I'm getting at you guys! 
Here's my WHY, my Purpose:
No matter where you are in life, no matter who you are, no matter what sorrows you are facing or even if you're just trying to make the best out of what you've got. I am going to make a promise to you and that is to help you find JOY in YOUR journey. 

Whether it is through family recipes from my Ohana to share with yours to warm your Ohana's bellies, or fun kid's activities to make the most of your time together to build memories your little ones will treasure.

My goal is to help you find that Joy. 
The purpose of "What Does The Cox Say?" is to help you find that Joy, fight for it, or simply keep it alive. 


Why? Because I came close to losing that JOY and it is something to be treasured and fought for. It's something we're going to do together.

You deserve it. We deserve it.
As overly cheesy as it seems, THAT is my purpose. 

My name IS Jessica Joy after all.
May God bless you my friends, and stick around because the JOY is going to be brought.

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Thursday, December 15, 2016

It's time...

Since I can feel my fingers again. I decided it was time.
Time to post again.
Time to hopefully find the right words to post how I'm feeling.

I saw Dr. Shami yesterday. You know, the man who saved my life. It was an incredible visit. Though the wait is sometimes a couple of hours. He is so worth it. 

I talked to them (Shami's team) a little about how I am feeling lately and I received so much insight. Things started to make sense as to why I'm feeling the way I'm feeling lately. 

Rewinding to a week or so ago...
The enormity of what I went through hit me. Like a Mack Truck.
As we were driving down Main Street. My oldest excitedly exclaimed after seeing the decorative Christmas characters on the light posts, "Mom! It's Santa!" I quickly glanced in my rearview mirror in time to see the excitement of Christmas all over his sweet face and it hit me. 
I could have missed this.
I could have missed this sweet moment.
I could have missed all of this.
I could have died this year, but I didn't. 
I'm alive. I am still alive. 
I'm alive to experience the magic of Christmas with my babies. 

I'm alive to enjoy our family traditions with them instead of watching from above like John is. I know he is with us, but we can't see him or talk to him so it is so very different.

With that enormity settling in, it has me reflecting on my own mortality. 
And feeling like I am falling so very short. But it also has me trying harder to be the best Mom I can be for my babies. Sometimes I totally miss the mark, but sometimes I nail it. And I know that it's completely normal to have those good and bad days. In the end, my little ones know I love them with my whole heart. And I'm so grateful for their love for me. 

Reflecting on my own mortality has also had me reflecting on John and how much I miss him. I feel like I'm grieving like he passed away yesterday. 

Fast forward to my Dr's visit. As I was talking to Dr. Shami he and I talked a little bit about that grief. When I was diagnosed with Leukemia 3 weeks to the day after John passed away. The three weeks leading up to that diagnosis were a blessing because even though I was growing increasingly ill, I was kept busy with my babies and it helped distract me from the hurt. 

Then, on May 27th the brick wall hit and brought my world to a halt (again) and my mind and body went into survival mode. And I took that grief and put it in a pretty little compartmentalized box at the side of my mind and left it while I fought for my life. 

And now...now I am in remission. Now I have survived. And now my mind has decided to open up that box to help me work through this enormous loss I feel. And now it really hurts. 

I miss the special bond I had with my brother. Though I didn't see him every day, I always knew everything was even steven. I always knew how much he loved me. 

And it hurts that he isn't here. And even when you'd tell him you loved him, later in life it became a ditto or a grunt, you still knew he loved you back. I miss hearing his voice. His laugh. Even his sneeze and his yawns.

But in the midst of this heartache I have the unshakeable knowledge that though I can no longer see my big brother. He still lives. Though I can't hear him, I know he still laughs. And thanks to the atonement of our Savior Jesus Christ, I will see him again. Sunday will come. 


I am so grateful for the gift of that innocent babe who slept in a manger. That babe who would grow to be the Savior of the world. That babe who made it possible for me to be with John and other loved ones who have passed away. I am so grateful for Him and that this time of year we are able to celebrate His birth.

If you find yourself in the same position I'm in. May you feel His everlasting love testifying to you that He lives. May you feel your loved ones embraces through the veil that separates us. May you find peace in knowing that they live on and you will see them again. That promise is real and is made to all. Believers or not. And God keeps His promises. I know it. I'm alive because of it. 



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Thursday, July 7, 2016

I Am...

I am brave.
I am brave.
I am brave.

A common phrase I repeat to myself over and over lately. 

But also...
I am sad. 
I am grieving.
I am tired.
I am lonely. 
I am scared. 
And I am mad, really, really mad. 

I know how important it is to stay positive, otherwise things tend to spiral. But I was so grateful in the hospital to receive "permission" (I know it's not the right word because I don't need permission to feel how I feel but it fits best here) to be mad, to get angry. Cancer is a messed up thing. 

My amazing friend Lindsay brought me an awesome printable/quote that I'd post a picture of but I don't want anyone to steal her design, so I'll just share the quote. 

"When life gives you lemons, don't make lemonade! 
Make life take the lemons back. 
Get mad! 
I don't want your damn lemons
What am I supposed to do with these?
Demand to see life's manager. 
Make life rue the day it thought it could give Jessica lemons! 
Do you know who I am?
I am the woman who is going to burn your house down, 
with Lemons!"

I was set on being an example and inspiration to others who may go through this hell called Cancer by being positive. But that isn't real, and I am. Some parts of this aren't positive. Some parts really, really stink. But I am learning a lot about myself. 

I am learning that if I repeat my phrase of "I am brave". I become it.
If I tell myself how much it's going to hurt. It really does. 
I've always known that I am stubborn so that is nothing new. 
And I really, really, don't like being woken up every night around 4 a.m. for vitals and blood labs. 

But onto the positives because there are still many.

I am also learning that I have one heck of a support system. From friends and family visiting me in the hospital. To my amazing neighbor and friend who coordinated meals and many other things for me not to worry about anything at home. To those who have brought the meals, helped clean in preparation for me to come home, or simply sent words of comfort and support. I was so grateful to receive cards in the hospital. I wish I would have taken a picture of my set up the last day I was there. My Mom decorated with family pictures and artificial flowers since real ones weren't allowed. Then I hung or placed every card received on my shelves where I could see them. 

This was towards the beginning of my stay.
I had amazing friends from work bring me flowers that the students and my colleagues had colored as well as a huge poster of positive messages from them. 



My parents are the biggest support system of all. I can't get over their strength. That on the heels of their sons death they are able to turn around and deal with another child being diagnosed with cancer. One thing we all know is that I am gonna survive this. I am gonna kick cancer's butt. I will rise strong and get through this. 

I am also grateful to be back with my sweet family. I missed my kiddos dearly after being away from them for almost 40 days. In the hospital at night I would dream about them. I could hear their laughter and at times I could feel their hugs. I am also thankful for my sweet hubby for doing his best and taking care of my babies. 

I had another friend send me a card that she felt she should buy but wasn't sure who it was for. This was before I was even diagnosed. The card she sent was meant for me. It was a reminder to come unto my Savior. I know that without Him I wouldn't be able to get through this. I'm a firm believer that God does give us trails that we can't handle...alone. But if we turn to Him we will get through it. With God anything is possible. 

So that's where I'm at right now. 
I know I was working on the events leading up to my diagnosis and will continue that in my next post. I just needed to get how I'm feeling out there. I'm not sure why, maybe just to vent. Maybe just to be upfront. To express gratitude. I don't know. 

Thank you all for your support as I go through this. It means more than you know. 

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