Tuesday, January 25, 2011

It's coming together

I am rearranging and redecorating my dining room to lose the color and play the classic whites and silvers off of the deep blue walls.

So goodbye plate and mirror wall:

And hello bright neutrals.

(PS- made those two balls with a golf ball, a racquet ball, twine and some hot glue. Just wrap, wrap and wrap some more.)

That window treatment is our Christmas white table cloth. I'm picking up another one for the other side.

Picked up most of these silver and candle accents at Michael's at their "After Christmas" sale for 80% off.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Coffee Filters...what?

I just finished my first Coffee Filter Wreath. Yes, you heard that right, coffee filter wreath.

I have seen a few on various blogs so I decided to give it a go. What do you think? I LOVE LOVE LOVE it. I am considering trying another, but maybe dying the edges of my filters first?

Here's the run down. Cost: apx $8. I paid $5 for the foam wreath after using a 50% off coupon at Michael's. I paid $2.60 for a pack of 200 filters. And I used a bunch of glue we'll call that $0.40. The ribbon came with some throw I bought ages back. Total time, about 2 hours.

How to:

I folded a pile of filters at a time into quarters. This was NOT precise, just fold and fold (as you can see in the middle of the wreath.)

Then I started gluing them around the edge with a generous dab of hot glue.

I did this until I reached the inside edge.

Next I took my quartered filters and put the flat edge along the back edge of the inside ring and outside ring.

Easy, therapeutic, cheap project.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Decoupage Candles

Remember these red candles that used to hang on either side of my mantle?

Since we are doing away with red, at first I thought I would have to buy some new pillar candles. But let's just be honest, who wants to spend money if you don't have to?

So I decided to try my hand at decoupage. If it was a disaster...I still had to buy candles. So no loss.

I used a very old french-english dictionary I had and tore out a few pages. Grabbed my Mod Podge that I purchased for a project in my daughter's nursery, a trusty foam brush and started at the top.

As you can see they have been relocated to my dining room.

I will show you my DIY project for what is nested between them on Monday. Then you'll get the full finished product, I am very pleased (though still counting my pennies for that vintage map!)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

New Year Redecorating

I have been moving things around like a crazy woman...didn't I promise I would? Good news is, so far I haven't purchased a thing.

I wanted to give you a peek at my new mantle arrangement.
A few things motivated this:

1- I was looking at it before the re-arrange and remarked to my husband that it was the one part of the room I was happy with. The look on his face suggested he didn't agree. He told me he liked cooler colors better than the reds.

2- I started looking at pictures in blogland and my idea book. I generally lean toward the cooler colors and a more eclectic style.

3- I decided I am really tired of balanced symmetry. I prefer layering and a variety of heights and textures. I seem to always try to balance things and group in 3's because they are hard fast rules I can follow. It takes a little more trust of my instincts to move things around until they "feel" right.

What do you think? I kept the pieces I loved like the elephant an the globe. I especially like that nothing is attached to the wall which gives me a lot more freedom to rearrange for seasons and as the mood strikes me.

Maybe later this week I'll show you what I DIYed with those candles that used to hang on either side.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Lyrical Genius

I thought I'd share my lyrical genius with you this morning. By that of course, I mean, my blatant copyright infringement as I take a song and change the words. Though this would be a seemingly Christmas tune, I assure you can use it year round. A nice way to break the tension when your 1 year old is whining or temper tantrumming. Without further ado...

(To the tune of I want a Hippopotamus for Christmas)

I don't want a grumpperpotomus for Christmas
Only a happypotomus will do
No whiney-ineys or ugly fussy-usseses
All I want are the happypotomusseses
The Grumperpottomusses just won't do

Saturday, January 15, 2011

One of those mornings

You know the ones. Where you get up at 6 for a little peace and quiet alone time, and as soon as you open your Bible the baby starts crying. Then when you finally give up and get her up she is so grumpy she wakes up the preschooler, who is also grumpy for waking up so early. I think it goes without saying that your grumperpotomus is coming out as well.

I finally gave it up and made muffins to prevent breakdown at about 7:15...with earphones and music so I could pretend I was alone. ear was phoned that is, can't exactly leave a 1 and 2 year old beyond your hearing.

So here is to embracing a morning unlike what you'd hoped, snuggling on the couch, eating muffins and counting down to very early morning nap time.

And here's a little secret, while the kiddos sleep and darling husband works down in the basement I will be rearranging furniture and wall hangings like a mad woman. These are the kinds of things my man thinks me crazy for, so I have to do it when he's not looking which is tough since he works from home. Maybe some pictures to follow.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Goals: Open up and take it easy

So we end the week of goals with this one, the hardest and easiest. It comes to this, loosen up lady! That is self-directed of course. It's time to make a fool.

Well, I hope not a fool exactly, but I'm counting on it and deciding it's ok if that is the result.

We have lived here 6 months and I have tried meagerly to meet my neighbors. You know the ways, a wave, Christmas cookies, etc.

But now I'm bringing out the big guns. You may laugh at my master plan, please do, I'm learning to laugh at myself. Do I strike you as more Mr. Rogers or Big Bird - female versions of course...

Step 1- Will you be my neighbor? Inviting the next-doors folks for dinner, before March.

Step 2- Garage sale outreach. I need to have one anyhow, so I'm inviting the whole hood. More traffic for everyone and it gives me a lame way to go door to door and meet people face to face.

Step 3- I'm totally starting a book club, and I'm inviting my whole neighborhood by flyer. That's right, by flyer! And if no one responds, and people drive past and point, I am going to be okay with me.

Link your goals, we'd love to see your blog too!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Goals: Home

First, I have to say we are still in the midst of some renovations. This is a bit aggravating but more manageable now that I have some clear lists for what to do next.

However, I am tired of just fixing stuff, I am ready to be inspired. Do you know what I mean? I want to have rooms I just love. This house has lots of blank walls and unfilled spaces and I don't have the desire (or budget for that matter) to just go shopping and fill it up.

PS- This means lots of fun decorating posts this year. They are my favorite. Your's too?

So two goals:

1- I am giving myself a modest cash budget every month. I am ready to get back to garage sales, thrift stores and whatever else I find to look for treasures that I will love. The Nester has inspired me. Take a look at what she has done!

2- My master bedroom. There are rooms that would make a bigger impact, (the kitchen comes to mind, can we say $ $ $?) but I am tired of having a room I am ho-hum about. Your master bedroom should be your refuge.

Maybe I'm just excited about the prospect of soon having the construction zone out of our room when the bathroom is done and the office furniture moved into the basement.

We got a good deal on our bedroom furniture and have always leaned towards the shaker style, but we don't love it in our master. We need more flare. So there. Hoping to find some great pieces to paint, and put together a board to inspire me!

These are pretty, but haven't found the inspiration yet. All photos from galleries.

Big Huge Maps

Overall, I have been very happy with our dining room re-do. It feels so nice to walk in the door and see a "completed" room. However, this wall just irks me with its sad framed print. It is just too small and frankly, not very interesting.

My husband and I found these wandering through Restoration Hardware and swooned! Until we saw the $1,200 price tag. But wouldn't a cool, large scale, vintage map be a wonderful centerpiece? I think I'd buy a light like this to put over it, I have seen them very reasonable at Ikea.

Here's the great news. We scoured the internet and found these for around $250. Plus they are of the world and North America which we prefer. Now to scrape my pennies together.

PS- I hit some serious post-Christmas deals to get my silver dining accessories. I'll post on that next week.

Here is to your thrifty finds!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Goals: Getting in order

I feel like I haven't 'had it together' since at least Thanksgiving, maybe our move this past summer. It just felt time to get back to basics.

I'm not talking revolutionary here people.

I realized this week that I can get a world or work done in the course of one 25 minute episode of Curious George. Start the morning and end the night with a good routine and everything else falls into place.

After dinner I have my husband snuggle the kiddos on the couch and watch an episode. I can get the dishwasher loaded, pots cleaned dried and put away, floor swept, counters and sink shiny and even set the coffee up to auto-brew in the morning.

Mmmmm, no better way to wake up than to hot, fresh coffee. How could this NOT improve my outlook the next day? Hot coffee and a shiny kitchen.

Okay, so maybe I'm not waking up to this kitchen, but still...shiny is better than dirty even if it's not marvelous marble.

In the morning I set the kids up in chairs to watch another episode while they eat breakfast and get the dishwasher emptied, laundry started and throw on my clothes if I haven't already. Then we are ready to go, go, go.

I'm also trying to get back to making to-do lists and totally reveling in the gratification of crossing off items that have been to-done!

And lastly, a little plug for Check it out if you need some help. I have started reading the emails again and I find her a huge help.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

New Year Goals

I am not one for Resolutions but...there is something about putting away all the Christmas decor that makes you star thinking about making things fresh and new. So I have set some goals.

1- Getting back in order

2- Home decorating goals

3- Take myself less seriously and opening up

details to follow...

Happy New Year!

Yes, yes, I know it is not the first of the year. But it is 1-11-11, which feels like the first of something, right?

I am not a new year's resolution type girl, but I have been thinking long and hard about some goals I would like to achieve this year. I thought I would share them with you this week.

First on the list was...REVAMP THE BLOG. Better, no? I'd love some feedback.

Monday, January 10, 2011


The blog needs some SERIOUS re-design. Not to mention posts. But not today. Because today I am sitting idly at my window gazing at the snow. 6-8 inches I might add, and that in GA!

What I love about a thick blanket of snow.

1- Everything glows just a little bit blue.
2- In GA there are no snow plows. No snow shovels for that matter. So when it snows, noone goes anywhere. Schools close, stores close, roads close. We just sit in the undisturbed quiet. No slushy black stuff, no work. Just soft white snow.
3- The sweet southern blue birds that land on our play set and puff themselves up to feel warm.
4- I feel absolutely no guilt for spending my day sitting, looking and drinking hot coffee.

I know I'm probably getting set up for many winters of disappointment, but this Florida raised girl is loving her first winter in Georgia, the white Christmas and January snows.