Tag Archives: military wife

Christmas Ornaments



Here are some of my fork and spoon ornaments. As you might know I am a youth leader at my church. I am currently on a bus full of youth and sponsors heading on a mission trip to Kentucky. I figured on the way I would work on some more ornaments and windchimes.



We have just crossed into Kentucky and about an hour from our destination. We will stay at another Disciples of Christ Christian Church. We will be working in a homeless shelter cleaning and serving food. We will visit Cane Ridge to learn more about our Disciples of Christ heritage. We will do various other work projects and fun activities. I had to leave my husband and daughter at home and already miss them!


Chick-fil-a drama…


Everyone is talking about Chick-fil-a so here is my opinion and frankly it doesn’t matter to me if you agree….

I love Chick-fil-a’s food. It’s delicious, but a little pricey. I will continue to eat there even if I don’t share the same exact beliefs or opinions with Mr. Cathy! But I will NOT wait in some long ridiculous line today. I WILL continue to love my gay friends and those straight ones that live together out of wed-lock. Because as a (Disciples of Christ) Christian woman I will try my best to accept everyone as they are. It doesn’t affect me or my family if someone is gay…who cares?!…get over it! Times are different today than in biblical days so long ago. So I will love my “neighbor” as myself and I will eat at Chick-fil-a another day when I have more money or a coupon.

Monday’s Military…Mom/Grandmom?

Monday’s Military…Mom/Grandmom?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Okay, I know that Monday’s have been set aside for Crafty Military Wives…however, today I didn’t have anyone lined up for it.  So, I am going to tell you all about an amazing Military Mom, my mother-in-law, Linda Murray.  As you know my husband is in the Army National Guard.  I can’t tell you how very scared, worried, proud, and most of all mad at the recruiter Linda was when she found out Brad was joining the National Guard.

She was a very dedicated mom!  She and I drove all the way from NC to Ft. Sill OK to see Brad graduate from Basic Training.  We consoled each other as Brad was away in various locations for training, Officer school, etc.  Yes, she made me crazy sometimes but that is what mother-in-laws do sometimes.  I loved her just the same though.

She sent a package (at least one) every week to Brad when he was deployed to Iraq.  Brad often had so much stuff he shared most of it with his soldiers.  She and I would talk endlessly about what we were going to see him next.

I should probably tell you that I was pregnant and ready to burst when Brad was due to deploy.  Linda always call, texted, emailed, instant messaged me to check on me and make sure I was eating healthy.  Well, luckily Brad was able to be there when I gave birth to our beautiful and amazing daughter.  Guess who else was there at that hospital too? You guessed it our moms (and a few other very special people).

Well, Brad had to leave on deployment two weeks after our daughter was born.  Though he didn’t leave the country for another two months.  He was able to come home and be with us at our Church when our daughter was dedicated.

Linda was a very proud Grandmom too.  She always had photos of her grandchildren and stories to share with whomever would listen.  Whether it was someone in the store (She was an avid coupon-er!!)  or someone at church.  I often find myself wanted to call her and tell her something that my daughter says and does.

While my husband was deployed Linda’s cancer came back. This time melanoma cancer.  She had already gone through what the doctor’s said was breast cancer, then lung cancer.  She was a fighter!!  She didn’t let anything (especially cancer) stop her.  She kept busy coupon-ing, shopping, teaching, but most importantly playing with grandchildren and send packages to her deployed son.

Linda Murray inspired me more than most people!  She was a dedicated mom, mother-in-law, wife, grandmom, teacher, giver to the community, etc.

We lost her to cancer on July 5, 2010.  We still love her and miss her very much!!!  Our daughter claims to talk to her sometimes, as she looks up toward Heaven.

The picture of the wind chime that I use as my logo picture on my blog, Facebook, and Pinterest is of the windchime I made in remembrance of Linda.

Photos courteous of Sassyfras Studios. (An amazing sassy sister photo taking duo.)

Featured shop!


Today I was honored to log in to my facebook page and find that my shop, Twice As Loved, is the featured shop at Etsy Military Wives page.    Etsy Military Wives is a group through Etsy made up of military wives, obviously.  There are so many talented wives in this group.  To find some great products made made and sold by these women please go to www.etsy.com and use the keywords Etsy Military Wives.  So many wonderful items will pop up.  Please go and check them out and support our military families!

Don’t forget to check back tomorrow as I feature another crafty military wife.


Let Freedom Ring…with spoons

Let Freedom Ring…with spoons

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

For the first time ever we hosted an Independence Day Cookout at our house this week.  I had a wonderful time preparing for the special event. I asked all of our guests to dress in red, white, and blue.  Believe it or not, they all did!  (Of course, I had to persuade my husband to wear his Army National Guard shirt that has an American Flag on it.)  I decorated the patio area with red, white, and blue streamers.  I tied red, white, and blue ribbon around some small mason jars and placed tea light candles in them.  I bought some red and blue citronella candles to keep the mosquitoes away.  I placed some red and white striped (Christmas) candles in larger glass containers surrounded by red and white mints in the middle of the tables.  I even painted the shed behind my house a “barn” red to match!!  I figured it wouldn’t be quite right without a signature silverware windchime with red, white, and blue.  Here are pictures of the windchime.  I will be posting it to my Etsy shop webpage.  And just for those of you that read this blog.  Here is a 20% discount code for my Twice As Loved Etsy Shop. { INDEPENDENCE2012 }

Remember I can custom make a windchime for you.  Contact me at agraymurray@gmail.com.

Monday’s Crafty Military Wife: Lauren Kenefick (The Crochet Lady)

Monday’s Crafty Military Wife: Lauren Kenefick (The Crochet Lady)

Each Monday I will be featuring one crafty military wife.  Check out today’s.

What is your real name? Lauren Kenefick

What is the name of your shop/business/company? The Crochet Lady

With which branch of the military are you affiliated? US Army 82 CAB, Ft Bragg, NC

Where are you from or where are you stationed? We live in Carthage, about 35 miles from post out in the country….love it out here!

What type of crafts do you create?
I Crochet, just about anything, from baby hats, doilys, Convertible Mittens and Prayer Shawls…..What can I make for you!

Crocheted Primitive Heart Shaped Pink and White Crocheted Coasters Mug MatsConvertible Crocheted Mittens Purple WoolCrocheted Shawl, Triangle, Pink and Green Tweed VarigatedLittle Bitty Ditty Bag Drawstring Pouch Purse Crocheted Small Red with White and Blue Stripes

How did you get started in crafting? I learned to crochet from a book while I was in High School, but as a kid I was always crafting, creating or making something!

What do you do when you aren’t creating? I am a mother of 3 teenage / young adults, and I am going back to school full time at the local Community College this fall!

What is your work space like?
Most of the time I crochet in the living room in the corner in my chair, but my yarn is kept in bins and a wardrobe upstairs in my bedroom.

Who or what inspires you in either life or in your business? My children inspire me a lot! We are always exploring new ideas and avenues together. I encourage them to strive to be the best they can be, and they inspire to me to do also.

What are your personal and/or business goals? Personally this year coming up is going to be a challenging year. Three of us will be attending the Community College, my youngest will graduate from High School and my Husband of 21 years will be retiring from the Army. We have been through the thick and thin of deployments over the years. Business wise I would love to see my shop reach 200 sales before the end of the year and to have a profitable new year!

Crocheted Mary Jane Shoes Booties 3 - 6 Months Yellow with White DaisyCotton Hat, Girls, Sun Hat, White with Lavender Trim, CrochetedCrocheted, Raspberry Pink, Mary Jane Shoes Booties 3 - 6 Months  Bright Pink with White DaisyDiaper Cover, Purple Flower, Crocheted, Photo Prop

To purchase one of these beautiful items just click on the picture.

Lauren’s Etsy Shop: The Crochet Lady

Lauren’s Facebook Page: The Crochet Lady

Be sure to tell her that April Murray with Twice As Loved sent you!  Thanks fans for supporting us military families!  We appreciate you!

Upcycled Silverware Windchime Teal Blue Red Beads

Upcycled Silverware Windchime Teal Blue Red Beads

Making this upcycled gravy boat windchime at White Lake, NC made me think about all the “boat” rides I have gone on there or somewhere else.  Many days in my youth were spent on a boat in either Jordan Lake, NC or Badin Lake, NC.  Days were spent fishing, tubing, tanning, and relaxing.

Yes a gravy boat is quite different than a fishing or sports boat. But still the same the memories come back.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This windchime can be found and purchased at https://www.etsy.com/listing/102362816/silverware-windchime-upcycled-gravy-boat

This windchime was made with love by using upcycled silverware and gravy boat.
There are two forks and two knives attached by fishing line. The line is adorned with red and teal blue beads. The tines of the forks have been bent for additional attraction.

The flower molds on the handles of the knives make this a great piece of art to hang in a garden. This windchime could be hung up inside or outside.

This would make a great gift for any occasion.
-Mother’s Day
-Father’s Day
-Grandparents’ Day

If you like this item, please visit the rest of my shop. http://www.twiceasloved.etsy.com

Find out more about Twice As Loved Artist http://www.etsy.com/people/twiceasloved?ref=owner_profile_leftnav

For other handmade items on Etsy search: teamhandmade
For other military wife owned shops on Etsy search: Etsy Military Wives