DIY's & Tutorials, Home

So I know it’s a far cry from the extremely personal posts that we have shared with you in the past several weeks, but this week we want to share one of our favorite home decor ideas with you.

I’d like to think that I have great taste, & that I’m known to come up with a great idea every once in a while. But my husband, Weston, is the true master mind, & executor of all the great designs that fill our home. He is just great at turning nothing into something. He has that “special touch” where he can make something ordinary look extraordinary just by arranging, or re-arranging it. He also has that vision- to see that something can be truly great, even if it’s not great in its current state. I will have to admit that quite often he tells me about an idea that he has, & I’m like “Um…okay?” (I myself do not possess that “vision” or “special touch”.). But when he’s done, it’s always like the most awesome thing I have ever seen, but never could have imagined. This was one of those ideas. When Weston first told me that he wanted to use old clip boards as picture frames (he is a big fan of upcycling), I was like “Ew!”. But of course it turned out to be a beautifully unique idea, & I was wrong…again!

I love old photos, like antique photos. There is something that old style photography & equipment captured that just can’t be reproduced by an iPhone camera. An essence, that not only can’t be reproduced, but probably doesn’t even exist in this day & age.

So, I semi-recently began collecting antique photos. I have found them at antique stores & malls, thrift stores, yard sales, etc.. But I needed a cool way to use these photos. I ended up sticking them in a box & forgetting about them for a few months. That’s when Weston mentioned the clipboard idea, that I wasn’t too fond of, good thing he didn’t listen to me. There is truly beauty to be found in the simplicity of this design.

All you need to put together some of these for yourselves is:

  • A few antique photos &/or books (small books, not real thick ones).
  • Some old clipboards, we got ours from thrift stores & family members, you could use new ones but I think an old beat up one has a much better look for this project.
  • A bundle of eucalyptus. We usually get ours from Trader Joe’s, but since we now live an hour from our closest Trader Joe’s , we opt for local florists. If you are local to our area we recommend Evans Flowers if you are near Anniston, Al., The Bell Ringer if you are near Heflin, & Pell City Flower & Gift Shop if you are near Pell City.
  • Lastly, you will need several sheets of printer scrapbooking paper. We always get ours from Hobby Lobby, they have a great selection.

Making them is a fairly easy process. I don’t have step-by-step instructions for you to follow, but I’m sure you get the general idea from the photos. Have fun with it, get creative and make them your own! If you made some, we would love to see them! Upload your photos to Instagram and tag us @thegraysscale.

All our love,

The Grays.

*This Post is not sponsored by or affiliated with: Hobby Lobby, Evans Flowers, The Bell Ringer Florist, or Pell City Flower & Gift Shop.

Turn, Turn, Turn

Our family


If you are now, or ever have been in the past, an “oldies” music fan, then you probably already know where this is going…The song Turn! Turn! Turn! was made a hit in 1965 by an American folk rock group called The Byrds. It’s a song that I have heard played many times on the radio in my mom’s car growing up. As a kid, it was just another catchy sixties tune that I was used to hearing, but now it has much more meaning.

There is a lot of truth in the lyrics of that song. I swear, each time a chapter in our lives comes a close or we experience a big change in life, the dj that lives in my mind insists of making this song a part of my mental soundtrack! All jokes aside, it has been a great reminder of hope when things may not be going our way. I am sure of the fact that the biggest reason that this song resonates with & uplifts me so much is that the man that wrote the lyrics, Pete Seeger, took them straight from the first eight verses of the third chapter of Ecclesiastes. I absolutely love when I find out that a truth that I learned as a child was born from the Word of God, even though I may not have realized it at the time.

For those of you that may have no idea what I’m talking about- maybe you have never heard the song or read the verses. Either way, me writing all this is pointless if you do not know what I am talking about. So, while I would love for you to find a bible (or a bible app) and read the entire chapter of Ecclesiastes, for now, here are the lyrics to Turn! Turn! Turn!

To everything (turn, turn, turn)

There is a season (turn, turn, turn)

And a time to every purpose, under heaven

A time to be born, a time to die

A time to plant, a time to reap

A time to kill, a time to heal

A time to laugh, a time to weep

To everything (turn, turn, turn)

There is a season (turn, turn, turn)

 And a time to every purpose, under heaven

A time to build up, a time to break down

A time to dance, a time to mourn

A time to cast away stones, a time to gather stones together

To everything (turn, turn, turn)

There is a season (turn, turn, turn)

And a time to every purpose, under heaven

A time of love, a time of hate

A time of  peace, a time of war

A time you may embrace, a time to refrain from embracing

To everything (turn,turn, turn)

There is a season (turn, turn, turn)

And a time for every purpose, under heaven

A time to gain, a time to lose

A time to rend, a time to sew

A time for love, a time for hate

A time for peace, I swear it’s not too late.

Those of you that have been following along on our journey know where we started- with an idea & a passion to “live the dream, every single day”. We started with risking a big move from Florida to Alabama (not that it was a big move geographically, but we were risking a lot mentally & emotionally to come back to a place that we thought we had left behind.)  & big ambitions to make a living as quail farmers. To take back the time that we had been forced to give away to consumerism & the idea of what the “American Dream” has become, & give that time to our family. While the core values of our dream & ideas remain, our journey has changed course. The idea of us being some kind of farmers didn’t quite pan out like we had planned, but we are okay with that. Actually, I’m smiling as I am typing this because the idea that we were ever going to be satisfied with that choice is comical- not to put down farmers or farming, I think it is a wonderful necessity of life and I am grateful to them. But, this change in course is a very welcomed change and I personally feel relieved. Even if everything would have worked out “perfectly”, I don’t think it would have been what we wanted. Right now, we don’t really know what time or season it is for us. We are not lost, we are just simply waiting. And we are not down & out. We are rising. We are hopeful & even excited at the anticipation of what the next season in life brings. And we are still “living the dream, every single day”, because that never had anything to do with a profession or geographical location. It’s more of an idea. An idea that love & time spent with the ones you love are life’s treasures to be pursued. An idea that everyday can be the dream, if  you let it- enjoy God’s blessings big & small, & to love what you already have.

I felt the need to share this with you all, because when we started this journey I made a promise to all those chose to peek in on it. A promise to “deliver an interesting story”, and I have failed you miserably. This past year has definitely had some rough patches in it! There are so many things that I thought that we were going to be able to do & share with you that just didn’t happen. Partially because we didn’t get to do all the “things” & partially because I let negativity steal my ability to share with you, and for that I am sorry. I won’t make you any more promises, but I can tell you that I know that the plan that God has for us is far greater than what we could have ever tried to plan on our own. I hope to share with you what’s coming next. Want to see?

With our love,

The Grays

P.S. We thought this would be a great time to share all of the incredible images of our family that were captured by Natalie Wippler, we hope you enjoy them. She is truly talented and our family always considers it an honor to be photographed by her.

Please take a minute and check out her instagram or visit her site