Month: August 2015

Master Bedroom Makeover- Part 2 (The DIY Headboard)

So much has happened this week in our Master Bedroom Makeover!  I was able to finish the second piece of furniture- one bedroom dresser.  I used the same approach as I did with the nightstand I finished last week (more about that here). Once I finished the dresser, I wanted to take a break from painting furniture, even though I still have one more dresser to go.  I opted to change it up and work on a couple different projects for the room over the weekend.  The biggest project was to complete our headboard.  I had read and read and read tutorials and reviews of how to make one of these suckers.  I was so excited, but also a bit scared to tackle this one.  But, I was getting a little tired of looking at this “headboard”, and when Addy asked me if we were going to leave the tape up forever, I thought it was time to get it done.

5 Second “Should I Sand This??” Test

Laminate, veneer, hardwood…when is it really CRUCIAL to sand a piece before you paint it?  I’m not going to lie, when I first embarked on this journey of repurposing and breathing new life into old pieces I avoided sanding AT. ALL.COSTS.  Looking back, there are several times when I should have sanded the piece, and I didn’t.  Honestly, I think the idea of sanding scared me a little.  I have no idea why.  It’s not hard, and really now that I’ve tried it, it’s really not as bad as everyone makes it out to be.  And with certain surfaces, I believe it makes all the difference. So today, I thought I would share what I’ve learned so far about when it’s absolutely necessary to sand…AND…I’ll share my top secret method to deciding if something needs to be sanded!  The best part?  Not only is it foolproof…but it also takes about 5 seconds!

Master Bedroom Makeover- Part 1

When we moved into our new house, the downstairs needed the most work.  We painted all the walls, painted all the trim white, I painted the kitchen cabinets and make curtains…basically spent most of my time and energy on the first floor.  The upstairs of the house had decent (neutral) paint, the trim was already white, and overall it didn’t need much immediate attention.  But lately, I’ve been itching for a change.  I’ve been swooning over lots of peaceful retreat-looking master bedrooms..and thinking maybe it was time to tackle our master for my next project.  I can already picture myself burrowed into a cave of white comforter and silky sheets, dozing on a Saturday morning.  Until…wait.  Oh yeah.  My kids wake up at 7:00 am on the weekends. Regardless, I’ve embarked down the path to a “prettier” master bedroom.  Just don’t tell Brandon I’m aiming for pretty…he might not like that. I had an open Saturday this past weekend and a new can of Zinsser primer…so I got right to work.  (When I sent the …

Motivation Wall in the High School Classroom

Heading into this school year, I needed to give myself a bit of a pep talk.  We’d had an amazing summer, done lots of fun things, and darn it I just wasn’t ready to give all that up.  I knew my classroom needed something new, awesome, and inspiring.  I had a feeling that my students might also benefit from this daily reminder. I ripped down a couple of old posters and planned out how I could make this happen (because of course it was the day before school started…I was having too much fun enjoying summer before that!)  I knew I needed something lightweight, as I didn’t want to have to drill into the concrete block walls in my classroom.  I sent my sweetie of a husband (really, he did this the night before school…what a guy) to Home Depot to scope out their selection of foam board.  What he eventually found was basically 1 inch insulation board, had it cut into two 2×8 pieces, and we were in business.

Power Breakfast Bowl

In May, I completed my first WHOLE30.  The best way I know how to explain that 30 day journey was that it was the easiest hard thing I’ve ever done.  For those who aren’t familiar, it’s a super strict Paleo type of eating- no grains, sugar, legumes, dairy, or alcohol for 30 days.  Basically, you eat lean proteins (meat and eggs), fruits, veggies, and healthy fats.  I learned a TON, saw lots of positive change in a very short time, and could not recommend this enough for anyone who just doesn’t feel healthy and wants a way to get back on track.  (And really, losing weight was a bonus here, but the energy and just overall good feeling I had while completing my Whole30 was just mind blowing.)  If you want to learn more, I would suggest reading It Starts with Food by Dallas and Melissa Hartwig.  AWESOME, EYE-OPENING read.  Or, leave a comment and we can chat more about my experiences in the program (which is free, by the way!) Anyway, I’m not eating …

Simple Guide to Making Curtains with Grommets

Grommets give curtains such a custom, expensive feel.  I decided to make my own curtains for the new house mostly because the fabric options were endless, but also because I had lots of custom sized windows to deal with.  For whatever reason, grommets SCARED me.  I felt like they looked so complicated, and well…custom.  Luckily, I had my very brave sister Sabrina along for the ride on this project, and she convinced me that we should give them a try! I fell in love with and purchased this dreamy fabric from JoAnn’s many months before I actually started on these curtains.  Finally, I set aside a day for curtain sewing day.  In all, I had 8 (yes, count them EIGHT) panels to make for our living room/kitchen area.  This included small panels over our kitchen sink, four panels for our bay window in the kitchen, and two panels for our sliding glass door in the living room.  We used clips to hang the sets in the kitchen, but opted for grommets in the living room. …

Banana Mudslides

Bananas are pure magic as a food.  Did you know that you can put frozen bananas in a food processor or blender and make ice cream?  My kids like to call it “Banana Swirl”, thanks to Daniel Tiger.  But really, the consistency is amazing, and throw in some add ins or flavor (cocoa powder, peanut butter, etc) and you have a real treat. Today, I’m going to share an adult beverage that takes these magical bananas to a whole new level.  I LOVE fruity, sweet, trillion calorie adult beverages.  What I don’t love are those trillion calories…so I was beyond thrilled when this experiment worked! One of my all time favorites are mudslides…from TGI Fridays, or made at home (thanks a lot for introducing me to these little devils, Christy!!!) True mudslides are made with vanilla ice cream…and don’t get me wrong, I love a little ice cream in my life.  But, one night I decided to change things up a bit.  I got out my secret stash of frozen bananas (when bananas in our …

Corn Salad Recipe

Since this recipe is one that my friends and family tend to ask for, I thought I would put it out there for anyone to enjoy.  “Corn Salad” is just the (lame, boring, obvious…) name I’ve come to call this dish, that was first shared with my by my good friend, Jill. This just screams summertime cook out, and I’m known to bring it to most any event in the summer months.  Without fail, people ask “What is this stuff”, I try my best to explain, the bowl very quickly empties, and people begin asking for the recipe.  Really. The best part is that it’s super quick and easy to whip this Corn Salad up.  Here are the ingredients: First, drain the corn and put in the bowl.  Then, chop the onion and red pepper and add to the corn.  You are almost done…can you believe that? Next, you will add the cheese and mayo, and then stir well.  It looks a bit weird, but trust me on this. That’s all there is to it. …

Pillow Making 101 (Including my secret tip!!)

Let’s talk about pillows- decorative pillows.  Anyone besides me think they are RIDICULOUSLY expensive?!?  And they just have a way of sucking you in with their beautiful prints and colors.  You know what I’m talking about…Target, Home Goods… I have good news…making pillows is SUPER easy.   Like, I got a sewing machine for Christmas about 5 years ago and finally used it for the second time (true story) easy.  And guess what else?  Making pillows doesn’t cost much money, so when you get tired of that print that was so beautiful last season, you can make a new set! I’m going to let you in on a little secret about this cute little anchor pillow…it was a placemat.  Yup.  I saw these cloth anchor placemats at TJ Maxx and immediately pictured them as throw pillows.  The pack of 4 placemats was $10, so I bought it and went searching for the perfect fabric.  I found a yard of denim fabric on clearance at Michaels for two bucks, and that was more than enough to …

End Table Update Take 2

Okay, so remember the end table debate- gray vs. stripes? (If not, read about it here.)  I have to say, in the end, the stripes won out.  In my heart, I loved the stripes from day one.  That lovely gray striped table is settling in well in it’s new home in our living room, so I figured it was time to tackle its sister end table. I wanted this table to coordinate with the coral and gray table I recently finished (here)…in plans that they will end up in our front room (which doesn’t really have a set purpose, hence the generic name.  Someday we will determine what we want to do with the room). Originally, I planned to do chunky, horizontal stripes on this tabletop.  But, once I finished the gray base (Sherwin Williams Fawn Beige) and contrasting coral (Behr Peach Mimosa) top, I knew I had the look I wanted. I’d love to hear your thoughts.  What do you think of this finished piece?  Should I stripe this one up as well?!