Wednesday, September 7, 2011

New Floors

About a month ago we (as in my husband!) completed a pretty major home improvement. One that we have been saying we were going to do pretty much from the first day we moved into our home (almost 6 years ago!!)

I was leaving for 2 weeks to visit my family, and this is what I left...

Well, I didn't leave that cute baby, but I did leave that pretty awesome guy, an empty front room, and some nasty carpet behind.

This is what I came home to...

LOVE IT!! For one thing I now have hard floor under my table. Whoever thought of putting carpet under a dining room table must have not had children!

I am also so grateful that I didn't have to live in a torn apart house for 2 weeks! The couch was in the kitchen for heaven sake! Can you imagine being in that everyday, with 3 kids! So major praise to my husband for working hard all day at work, then coming home and working hard late into the night at home. Yup, he's pretty awesome!

And to show off some of his skills, let me just show you the kinds of cuts he had to make around our fireplace...
Pretty impressive!

This really is just starting a chain reaction of more projects that I want to do. Like redecorate my dining room, paint my hutch and table, and get new couches in the family room, which means that we need to re-carpet the basement before we can move the old couches down there...which means we have to paint the ugly wood paneling walls down there first. All of which I am very excited to do...we'll see how long it takes us though! I mean the wood floor was 6 years in the making! But very worth it!

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Cedar chest redo

So, even though I haven't been posting them, I actually have been busy with several projects lately. Like painting my boys bedroom. No pics of that, because it isn't done yet. But the whole painting thing kind of snowballed and I started painting lots of other things. Like my cedar chest. I have been wanting to paint it for awhile, but have hesitated for sentimental reasons since it was my high school graduation gift from my parents.

Here is what it used to look like...
But my decorating style has changed since I was 18, and good thing too, otherwise my house would be decorated with posters of Leonardo DiCaprio and random quotes that I got from church. Anyway, I was over the big frilly heart. At first I was going to play it safe and just paint it black. Then at the last minute I decided to get a little brave...
LOVE IT! It's like I have a little sunshine in my room.
I'm still trying to decide if I should distress it or not. What do you think...distress or not distress?

PS Mom, I hope you aren't mad at me! :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

New room-with a little help from my friends

This past weekend, I finally got around to painting my bedroom. I've been wanting to do it for awhile now, so it feels so good to finally have it done! Here are some before and afters.

Here is a before before shot of my room over a year ago...

Then the awful flower bedspread (one of those what was I thinking? purchases) REALLY started to annoy me, so I flipped it over until I found a new one that I liked.

We also got a new bed, and got rid of the little shelves for nightstands and got bookshelves instead. (I love to read in bed at night, so bookshelves work the best for me!)
Here is the next before... :)

So, after returning to the store to re-tint my paint color after discovering the original color I chose was too light, and three coats later (which we were still able to knock off in a night thanks to some help from my friends. Thanks guys!!) I have a new light, bright, and airy bedroom!

I love it! It is a little crazy how happy this room makes me, but I seriously love it!

The curtains are made from sheets again.

The pillows are made from napkins.

The wall color is called Romantic Overcast, very appropriate for a bedroom, right!

I love this little gallery wall. All wedding and engagement pictures, with some little canvas squares covered with paper thrown in there.

I'm a little strict with my bedroom. I will let my kids crawl in bed with us occasionally, but they aren't allowed to play in there. They pretty much have every other room in the house, I need one just for me! :)

I still have some plans for some more art work and to paint some furniture, but I am so happy with my new room!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Disney Crafts

My sister was here visiting this past week. So we had some craft time. My family is full of Disney lovers, so naturally we decided on some Disney inspired crafts!

I already had this saying up in my house, and my sister wanted one too. She is a 2nd grade teacher. I think this is a very fitting quote for a teacher!

Love this one! For those of you that aren't Disney fanatics like we are, this is from the ride Slash Mountain. We wanted it to look woodsy like Brer Rabbit and the ride. :)

I also love this one. What a great welcome sign. This is from the opening speech Walt Disney made the day Disneyland opened.

It was so fun having a crafting buddy! And I think I got her hooked on a Silhouette. She started looking at them after playing around with mine. They are pretty awesome!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Monkey Bread

I mentioned that this weekend was General Conference for my Church. A tradition of many people is to have a big brunch before Conference starts. For our brunch I made monkey bread.It is a favorite of my kids. I don't make it very often, usually just on birthdays, Christmas, and conference.

It is so easy to make and so yummy. Here is my recipe.

**I don't really measure for anything, but it isn't really necessary for this recipe! :)

3 tubes of buttermilk biscuits
1/2 cup butter
about 2/3's cup sugar
2-3 tablespoons cinnamon

In a zip lock bag combine the sugar and cinnamon. Cut the biscuits into 4th's. Put the biscuit pieces into the bag a few at a time and shake to coat. Put the biscuits into a Bundt pan. In a small saucepan melt 1/2 cup butter and stir in the remaining cinnamon sugar mixture. Pour over biscuits. Bake at 350 for 22-25 minutes. When done, invert onto a plate. Enjoy!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Family Proclamation Sign

This weekend is a big weekend if you are a member of my church. It is General Conference where we listen to the leaders of the Church for lots of inspiration and guidance. It is wonderful!

Several years ago the leaders of my Church released this statement, called The Family: A Proclamation to the World. It basically states our beliefs about the family and the importance of the family to Heavenly Father's plan.

I wanted to have a way to display it in my home that would be more visible than just displaying a framed copy of the statement. So I chose some of my favorite phrases from the proclamation and cut out the words with vinyl using my Silhouette.

I love it. It's a great reminder of how important my job as a wife and mother is.

Friday, March 25, 2011

New Curtains

New curtains. That's what I've been working on, once I got my sewing machine running again. I really needed new curtains. The ones I had was just something I quickly put up after we moved into our house (five years ago) and didn't think much about them, (for 5 years!). Then I went to my friends house. She has a great blog, Kreyv. It makes me want to redecorate every room in my house, adding even more to my decorating ADD as well as giving me decorating multiple personalities. So many good ideas! Check it out, it's awesome. She had just made some curtains that I loved, or should I say craved! It was just a week ago that I saw them, and I've already made them, that's how much I craved them!

Here is what I did...I don't have many pictures because remember how I hate that! And they are all taken after I was done, because once I got started, I didn't want to stop to take pictures! I'm impatient like that. Anyway, I bought some twin flat sheets for 5 dollars at Walmart, 2 brown and 1 cream. I used the top of the sheet for the slot for the rod to go though. You know how there is that folded over part in sheets? I just cut a slit in the back section of the fold like this...

Then I cut them into 15 inch sections, that would make the length of my curtains 87 inches long, allowing for a 1/4 inch seam. I needed 6 sections for each curtain, so I cut the top off of the 2 brown sheets, then cut 4 additional brown sections. For the cream sections I started from the bottom and cut 6 sections from that one. The width of the curtain is just the width of the twin sheets. This is when I discovered that not all sheets are created equal. The cream sheets were about 1/2 inch smaller in width than the brown ones. So I just made sure that one of the sides all lined up, then once I had sewn the 6 sections together I went back on the mismatched side and hemmed the brown sections to make then match the cream.

Lined upside...

Hemmed side...

I used the bottom of the sheet for the bottom of one curtain, so that one didn't need to be hemmed. The other one got a 1/4 inch hem so that one is 1/4 inch shorter, but you can't tell once they are up, esp. since on is hidden behind an end table. At least I can't tell. Don't tell me if you can. :)

I love them! I love looking at something and thinking, "That looks really good!" Especially when I am the one that made them! Plus, they were pretty cheap, 15 bucks for 2 panels, plus I have enough fabric left to make some brown and blue curtains for my baby's nursery, plus I think I am going to make some throw pillows for my couch with them. All that for 15 bucks, not bad. Plus they look awesome.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

She's back!!

Well, I called my Mom to complain about my sewing machine breaking. She is the one that gave me the machine (when she got a new fancy one) She got the green machine from her mom, who got it from her sister. That girl has been around the block! I'm talking about my sewing machine, not my Mom. :) ANYWAY, my Mom had some tricks for me to try and they worked! I got the green machine working again, which means I will be able to get my project done much sooner! It would have been done today, but on top of all the technical difficulties I've had today (did I mention that I also dropped my cell phone in water?) my sweet baby decided not to take very long naps today. I think he knew I was trying to get something done. :) But I still managed to get half way done, so hopefully I can show what I've been working on soon!


I need a moment of silence. My sewing machine died. Right at nap time. Right when I was starting a new project. I am very sad about it. Look how cool and vintage-y she is...

I'll never find a sewing machine as cool as she was. But she led a good, long life...for a sewing machine.

Rest in peace green machine.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Dollar Tree Plates

I love my Silhouette. I've had it for over 2 years now, so I think I jumped on the Silhouette band wagon before everyone else. Cuz I'm cool like that. :) But it is completely awesome and I use it for probably 75% of all my projects. And the cool thing about Silhouette is that even though mine is 2 years old, I can still get the latest program, since it is available to download. The only function I don't have that the new ones do is the ability to save things onto an SD card, which isn't a big deal for me. But I love it. Seriously love it. Can you tell? :)

Anyway, here is one reason why I love it. I can take plates from the Dollar Tree, add some vinyl shapes cut from my Silhouette and make them look like this...

Way cute, way easy, and way cheap.

And don't birds just make you feel all Spring-like?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Baby Boy's's a little *wild*

I am finally done with my baby boy's (who is 5 1/2 months old) nursery. Well, done for me. I have decorating ADD, so things get changed a lot at my house. It is way easier to get the nursery done before the baby gets here though, that's for sure! But with adoption you don't get the usual 9 months of preparation time. We were first contacted by Andrew's amazing birth mother on Sept. 10th. We got a call on Sept. 23rd and found out her water had broken (6 weeks early) and then five days later, he first showed his cute face. So 18 days from first contact to birth. Doesn't leave much time for decorating! :)

So, slowly I have been adding to it and am ready to call it done (for awhile at least). It doesn't look like it's straight from a catalog or anything, but I love it.

This little shelf is very sentimental to me. The book is a beautiful book about adoption, the elephant was a gift from Andrew's birth mother, and the sign really just sums up what adoption is all about.

I made all my signs and blocks using my Silhouette. (LOVE!)

My favorite thing on this shelf is the picture of his little foot. So cute!

This is my favorite part of the room...

I love this book, the pictures are so cool! I've always wanted to use them to decorate a room with. I can see this growing into his toddler room with some silly pictures of all the cute things toddlers do...don't all two year old become wild things anyway? Might as well have a room to reflect that! :)

I want to do something different than just framing the pictures. I got a 12 inch wide pine board from Home Depot and had them cut it into 10 inch long boards. I originally was just going to paint the boards and mod podge the pictures on. But then I remember that I had a TON of burlap left over from when I was going to make burlap pillows. On a side note, I did make one burlap pillow but nixed the idea when I discovered that burlap left lots of little hairs on my couch and my kids complained it was too scratchy to lay on! :) So that's why I have so much burlap left. Anyway, I ended up wrapping the boards with burlap and stapling it to the back. Then I just stapled the picture right on top. I used picture hanging wire (from WalMart) on the back so I could hang them.

L.o.v.e it!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The BEST Sugar Cookies EVER, St. Patrick's Day style

Yesterday my family went to the St. Patrick's Day Parade in St. Louis. It is a HUGE deal here. When I was growing up, St. Patrick's Day wasn't a big deal. I mean it was a fun little holiday, you wear green, you pinch people, a sneaky leprechaun might visit your classroom, but that was about it.

We have had fun celebrating this holiday more since moving to St. Louis. We always have so much fun at the parade, my kids love all the free candy and green beads they get.

On Friday I made some on my Grandma's "famous" (at least in my family) sugar cookies, shaped like shamrocks to take to the parade. I was watching my friends' boys that day, so I gave them each a ball of dough and their own cookie cutters and let them go to town! Here is what their cookies looked like...

(one really likes dogs, one really likes cow boys, and one really likes football)

And here are my Shamrock cookies...

I think I will eat these ones and let the kids eat the other ones... :)

Anyway, here is the recipe for the sugar cookies. They are honestly the yummiest sugar cookie EVER! They are so soft and thick. In my opinion they are even better than those pink frosted Granny B's cookies. Make some. You'll be glad you did.

Best EVER Sugar Cookies
3/4 cup margarine
3/4 cup Butter Crisco
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 Tbsp. cream of tarter
2 1/4 tsp. vanilla
5 1/4 cups flour

Cream together margarine, shortening, sugar, and eggs. Add baking soda, cream of tarter, and vanilla. Gradually add in flour. Chill dough for one hour. Roll dough on a floured surface to 1/4 inch thick. Cut with cookie cutters, place on greased cookie sheet. Bake at 425 for 4-5 minutes. Makes about 4-5 dozen, depending on size of cookies. Cool and frost.

And in my opinion, the only kind of frosting to use on these is homemade powdered sugar frosting. (Store bought frosting makes me gag!)

I usually half this recipe and still have tons for frosting left. (To put on graham crackers...another favorite treat around here)

Powdered Sugar Frosting

3/4 cup margarine, softened.
9 cups powdered sugar (about 2 pounds)
1/4 cup milk
2 tsp. vanilla
food coloring
Beat butter until smooth. Gradually add 2 cups powdered sugar, beating well. Slowly beat in 1/4 cup milk and vanilla. Gradually beat in remaining powdered sugar, adding additional milk if needed to reach spreading consistency. Add desired food coloring.

These are so good that I make them for as many holiday's as I can...and usually give some away because they are so good, I could eat them all, which my hips would definitely NOT appreciate! :)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


So after many, many months, actually almost a year, I've decided to revive my craft blog. But here's the thing, there was a few things about blogging that I didn't like. Like the amount of time I was spending on it. Like writing tutorials. Like feeling like I had to take pictures of every. little. step. (hated that!) Like "linking up" to other blogs. Like the way I was comparing myself to other blogs and feeling badly if I didn't have as many followers or my blog wasn't as "cool." I didn't have the time, or the desire to make the time, to spend adding features to my blog or do all those other things that "real bloggers" do. So I just stopped. :)

That sounds like a lot of things that I don't like huh? But there are parts I liked too. :) Like having a way to show what I make to people who appreciate it more than my hubby,--not that he doesn't appreciate it, just not in the same way. :) Like reading the sweet comments from other people. Like the way my creativity is sparked by it.

Anyway, I've decided to start back up again. I am not going to do much of the things I didn't like and just focus on what I did like. So, if anyone out there besides my mom and sister still want to read this, awesome! If only my mom and sister want to read this, awesome still.

So you probably won't find many tutorials here, I'll still take pictures, but not of every little step, and I am not going to worry about whether or not I am as "cool" as the other bloggers are. I don't want this to feel like a job. I already have a job that I love. And that job got a little bigger a few months ago when we were so blessed to be able to adopt this beautiful baby boy...

Seriously, is he not the cutest thing EVER!! Don't you just want to kiss those cheeks! He has brought so much joy to our family and most of the time I would rather sit and cuddle him than sit behind a computer. :)

Speaking of babies, I have a baby related project to share with you today. I found this high chair at a garage sale for $20.

I really hate those huge plastic high chairs, they are such a pain to clean with all their nooks and crannies. So I loved the simplicity of this old fashioned high chair (and the price!) But I didn't love the crackle paint job and the stenciling.

So some sanding and 2 cans of spray paint later, and this is what it looks like now...

Much better. And then I added the vinyl, because everything looks better with vinyl! ;)

I've actually had this since kid #2 was a baby, but never got around to painting it then. That's part of the reason why I am so thrilled with it. I've waited 4 years for this baby to get here. I am so glad he is here and I can do baby related projects now!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Faux Cupboard Picture "frames"

When I saw these cupboard picture frames on the Creative Crate a few weeks ago, they instantly were added to my ever growing list of projects to do. Unfortunately, I had no idea where to get cupboard doors in my area. So that meant that I either needed to come up with another way of doing it, or resort to taking the doors off my cupboards, because this was one of those projects that I just HAD to do! Well, I need my cupboard doors, plus they weren't really the right side, so this is what I came up with.

I think they look like pretty convincing cupboard doors, don't you? Here is how I did it.

I got 8x10 frames from Michael's that have a really chunky frame. They are $4.99, but I used a 50% off coupon. If I had a router (someday I will!) I would have probably just cut some wood to the size I wanted then routed the edges. But this works too.

I also got some $3 frames from Walmart. I painted the edges of both frames black to that when I lightly sanded the edges the black would show through.

The next part I don't have pictures of, but the frames from Michael's had MDF boards behind the glass that I drilled holes in for the ribbon. Then I removed the glass, painted everything white and sanded the edges. When it was completely dry, I added the ribbons. Then I took the MDV board and put it in the Walmart frames, and glued the Walmart frames onto the Michael's frames using E6000. For the clips, I had some already, but they were all pastel colors, so I spray pained them with Oil Rubbed Bronze paint.

And there you have it! I love them!

I obviously need more pictures for them still, but even empty they look cute.

And I need a project for the 8 pieces of glass I have leftover from them. Any ideas?

Linked to:

The Girl Creative

Thank you!

Thanks to Maryanne over at Scrappy Gifts for featuring my A Very Cute Boy layout!

And stay tuned later today for some faux cupboard frames that I came up with, inspired by these at The Creative Crate.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Creating Keepsakes Convention

So I am FINALLY finding time to blog about an actual craft, instead of just excuses of why I haven't been able to blog!

I mentioned awhile ago that I went to a Creating Keepsakes Convention with my mother-in-law a week or two ago. It was so fun! The classes were great and gave me tons of new ideas for my scrapbooks and motivation to get caught up on them! I came home with tons of layouts that just need pictures added to them. It was kind of weird for me to make a layout with a specific picture in mind, but most of the layouts I did would work for pictures I have waiting to be scrapbooked. They also move SUPER fast in each class, since they are trying to pack so much in that most of the layouts I had to finish at home. So here are a few that I have gotten done.

I love the colors of this layout and I learned a cool ripping technique. Here is a close up of it...

Notice how the edges are ripped. To do this you need a piece of double-sided patterned paper and then cut it down to a 10x10 square. Then just randomly rip pieces off the edges, rough the torn areas up with your finger nail and roll the rips down. Then take the 2 inch scraps from when you cut your original patterned paper down to 10 inches and cut little strips just big enough to adhere to the back of the paper, so the opposite pattern is showing in the front, behind the rip. I hope that makes sense! I couldn't take pictures since we did this in class and were moving at a break-neck pace! I think it looks so cool though! I also love the pocket we made. For that one, all you do is cut a rectangle out of patterned paper, rip a v shape into it, punch holes along each side of the rip and then sew it back up with a ribbon.

I also took a class on using over sized mats that was cool. It is an easy way to bring your page together. I like the ribbon embellishment on this one. All you do it fold 3 inch pieces of ribbon and adhere it to a circle.

Here is another layout using 2 over sized mats.

This class was one of my favorites. It was called misting and masking. And as you guess from the title we used masks on paper, them sprayed them with mist inks, removed the masks and got this...

This is another layout that I did in the same class as the ripping layout...

I love the group of pockets that you can see on the far right of the layout. I will show how I did that for another project I will be posting soon.

But I will show you how I made this little heart.

First take two strips of paper like this...

Adhere them together at the bottom. Then cut off the excess edges to make your point at the bottom, like this...

Then use a corner rounder at the top to finish your heart.

And you're done! I added a few fake stitches with a pen over the line where the papers overlap and inked the edges.

I still have about 20 more layouts to get done from the convention. Maybe that will get me caught up...

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