better than your dream House.

better than your dream House.

It is no secret that lately I've become a bit obsessed with making saint peg dolls for my girls. It won't be long until the fine folks at Michael's (because Hobby Lobby is a 35 minute drive away!) becomes like an episode of Cheers because they'll all know my name. A kind soul in Boise last year gifted us with a set of 30 or so saints. The girls loved playing with them and they traveled the country this summer with us. Since arriving in Washington I've started to make more and more saints and they needed a place to go other than the box they were given to us in. Two trips to Michael's (with coupons!) yielded the a wooden box and a castle. Both of the finished products were ideas that came from Pinterest (here for the box and here for the castle). So here's what I came up with:

the gates of Heaven, a.k.a. the trees in the Garden of Eden

And then came the favorite! First off, I had a 50% off coupon, so at the store the castle only cost me $12.50! What a steal! I decided it was a gigantic project so I'd just paint the outside and call it good. Besides, the one that I saw on Pinterest was painted as a one solid color inside and out type church. And who would want to paint around those obnoxious staircases on the inside? Not me. So I painted the outside a dark red with white trim because it reminds me of the basilica on my college campus, Belmont Abbey College. I decided to name the church "All Saints" since I'm painting all of these saints to go inside of it. I added a few details to the outside and was pleased.

So I called it good and let the varnish dry overnight, hiding it from our girls as it dried. But then I dreamt about it and came up with all of these ideas about what the inside of my dream church would look like. I could design different little side I kept dreaming. But those staircases, those staircases would be hard to navigate. Enter helpful husband and his tools. He used his magic and skills and removed the staircases without breaking the whole church and then I went to work. I used a solid light brown to paint the walls of each room and then I went crazy.

full view of the interior, complete with Mary chapel, St. Joseph chapel, tabernacle (with lighted red candle!), adoration chapel, main altar with crucifix, plus two small rooms with candles to light in prayer. When the church is closed, Mary and Joseph are across from each other, the tabernacle and the monstrance are in the same room, as are the candle tables. The tops of the church are the four pillars of the Church: One, Holy, Catholic, Apostolic. The red beams say "The Lamb's Supper" which takes place at each Mass. And, yes, I even sized the altars/chapels so they would be an appropriate, reasonable height for the peg dolls. Can't have the priests saying Mass at an altar the height of their noses, now can we?

tabernacle has the Alpha and the Omega because I'm all about those Catholic symbols! It is hard to tell, but Mary even has a serpent under her feet that she's crushing :)

main altar, including altar candles and a crucifix behind the altar

This is better than any Barbie dream house I ever had as a kid. I love painting new saints and being able to tell our kids stories about the saints. Our girls get to learn about real life miracles, pretend to say Mass, and know that all saints go to Heaven, which is their goal, too. Quite frankly, I'm not sure who is enjoying this more: me or my kids!
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