Some Gardening

April 28, 2009 at 7:52 am (Projects, Tid Bits) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Last night I picked up a few inexpensive black, square pots for a few flowers for our porch.  I think they (although small) brightened up the front porch and made it at least look like someone lives there!  We also hung a strawberry plant in the corner, where it can get a lot of sun.  (Again, sorry for the dark, rainy pictures!)

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It’s at least a start.  So, while I was out there I started pulling a few “weeds” from the rocks around the porch.  By the way, I am puzzled as to why the last owner planted three big, beautiful, green plants on one side of the steps, but none on the other.  So, if you are wondering, don’t ask me!  So, as I was pulling this “weed” from between all of the rocks (it looked like misplaced grass) I noticed it was growing from bulbs!  Grass doesn’t grow from bulbs, does it?  We are curious as to what it is, and maybe whether or not we should be pulling it!?  Here is a picture of what I pulled up, so if you have any info I’m all ears!

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Let me know what you think!  And, just for run, here is a picture of the pretty yellow flowers growing in the back yard!

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More Curtains!

April 7, 2009 at 7:35 am (Home Changes and Additions) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Last night we finished hanging curtains in the living room.  I am so excited to not have these flowery old lady curtains any more:

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blog-pics-3-0081I really wish I would have remembered to take specific before shots of these.  They even had poufy, paper-stuffed valences! 

I’m not too sure about the new curtains we chose, so I need your opinions and suggestions.  They are, no doubt, better than the before, but not exactly what we had in mind.  We wanted to stay inexpensive for right now, so we got these at WalMart (no Ikea near us!).  We originally picked a charcoal color, but when we got home we realized that the packages we grabbed were all black!  They do need some steaming, but here they are:

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I think it is a huge improvement, but it still feels a little off.  Tony likes the blinds on one window (this is the previous family’s doing- not mine!) but, I think the small window should have sheers as well so the two match.  What do you think? 

Either way, these are much more our taste, style, and colors, and best of all- no foofy grandma curtains! 🙂

Oh, and I realize that we really need a rod that is meant to be showing, but we aren’t going to spend the money on a custom length one right now.  So, the white bar has to stay and we just have to deal with it for a little while!

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The Start Of A New Project

February 17, 2009 at 9:34 am (Projects) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

The other day I wrote about how we wanted to make a mini bar area in our home.  I showed pictures of other people’s re-purposed bar areas that we loved.  But, after much discussion we decided we liked the look of a closed cabinet for this kind of thing a little better.  With all of my inspiration in hand, I set out to plan my own mini bar project.  Yes, we found the perfect (we hope!) cabinet for the job!  A Craigslist post led us to the Maple TV Cabinet.

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I see much potential in the armoire!  (We don’t actually pick it up until Thursday.) I plan on first painting it a high gloss black.  The back inside of the cabinet with be lined with mirror and wine and stemware racks will be hung from the inside.  The inside has one shelf, but we are guessing we will make a few new shelves from glass.  I am going for a bit of Hollywood regency here.  Overall, we think this beauty should have plenty of space for our entertainment needs!

We do have one small question, however.  I think there needs to be a flat space large enough to mix the actual drinks incorporated into the cabinet somehow.  I was wondering if the drawer could be used for that.  It might be a bit too low to be comfortable, though.  I was also wondering about making a sort of pull-out shelf inside the cabinet.  Is this even possible?  When I see the cabinet in person I will know if more space is necessary.  Until then, does anyone have any ideas or suggestions?

We are very excited to get the project rolling, so stay tuned for updates!

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Scrap-booking Question

January 29, 2009 at 10:32 am (Scrap-booking) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

I have been scrap-booking since I was in high school. I love taking photos and loving preserving memories, so this is quickly became one of my favorite hobbies. Due to being extremely busy I quit scrap-booking for a few years almost completely. The other day I found some very adorable paper and was so inspired I have started scrap-booking again full force. (The paper was from Micheal’s, which I recommend!).

I have come across a small problem, however, that I am hoping you out there in the blog world can help me with. My supplies are currently stored in about 4 different boxes. I rummage through the boxes when I am in search of inspiration or the perfect color of paper. The are constantly getting messy and unmanageable. The boxes are not uniform, either, which makes them hard to store. I am such a neat freak that this is really bothering me. I have seen carrying cases for sale that are meant for scrap-booking, but they are ridiculously overpriced!

My dilemma: I am insearch of an affordable, possibly DIY solution to the scrapbooking mess!

Here are just a couple of my unruly boxes of scrapbooking materials.  I love the pink box, as it is an oversized gift box from Victoria's Secret, but the heavy materials are starting to demolish the box!

Here are just a couple of my unruly boxes of scrap-booking materials. I love the pink box, as it is an over-sized gift box from Victoria's Secret, but the heavy materials are starting to demolish the box!

Here is just a glimpse of the plethora of supplies needed for scrapbooking.  Scissors, stickers, markers, pens, accessories, paper...

Here is just a glimpse of the plethora of supplies needed for scrap-booking. Scissors, stickers, markers, pens, accessories, paper...

I was thinking that sticker sheets and paper might be categorized and sorted in some sort of accordion type portfolio folder (Wal-Mart even carries on in a black and white damask pattern!). But, the 12′ x12′ sheets of paper might not fit in one of those. What do you think? Suggestions?

Here is a glimpse of the pages I have completed recently. Any page ideas? If you would like help with your scrapbook just drop me a line about that as well! 🙂

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P.S. It really is too bad that photos don’t do the details of these pages justice, as some of this paper is really gorgeous up close!

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Need Your Expertise

January 27, 2009 at 9:39 am (Home Changes and Additions) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

On Sunday Tony and I visited my grandparents.  My grandma gave me some dishes and also two antique picture frames.  She didn’t know much about them, except that they are old.  I’ll say!  The back of one picture has some writing on it that says 1898!  I know the frames are cross corner with leaves, and that they used to be quite popular.  Do you have any more information on these frames or the pictures inside?

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This is the writing on the back of one picture.  We can't make out all of the words, but we can read 1898!

This is the writing on the back of one picture. We can't make out all of the words, but we can read 1898!

I would love to know more about these, so if you know anything, let me hear it!

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On An Organizing Spree

January 8, 2009 at 9:42 am (Home Changes and Additions) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

After being so impressed with my organizational skills with the jewelry in the medicine cabinet, I decided not to stop there. I moved onto the closet next. Mostly we were already pretty organized in there, but rearranging a few things helped free up some space. I also hung a hook on one of the walls inside the closet to hang a few extra long necklaces from my costume jewelry collection. Things seem so handy and visible now. Here’s a peak inside the space of our home that everyone is afraid to share:

This is a view of the closet as a whole.  The shelving was already installed when we moved in, so we are using it as-is.  It is helpful, but we do not have "sides,"  just "areas."  A little confusing at first, but now it works.

This is a view of the closet as a whole. The shelving was already installed when we moved in, so we are using it as-is. It is helpful, but we do not have "sides," just "areas." A little confusing at first, but now it works.

We hang belts, scarves, and ties on the low bar, along with a few of my shorter shirts.  My giant shoe rack fits in the corner.

We hang belts, scarves, and ties on the low bar, along with a few of my shorter shirts. My giant shoe rack fits in the corner.

This is the hook of necklaces that I hung along a side wall of the closet.  This is so helpful!

This is the hook of necklaces that I hung along a side wall of the closet. This is so helpful!

Here is a close-up of the hook I used.  It is actually a hook that fits over a door, so one end is flat, which I use to hold multiple necklaces.  The other end is curved, but I twisted it with pliers to hang agianst a wall.  So simple I even did it myself.

Here is a close-up of the hook I used. It is actually a hook that fits over a door, so one end is flat, which I use to hold multiple necklaces. The other end is curved, but I twisted it with pliers to hang agianst a wall. So simple I even did it myself.

I know I’m no expert, but here are some of my organizing tips (for any area, but especially the closet):
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1. Downsize. Make three piles of your belongings. One- things that no longer fit or you no longer want, which will go to good will or the garbage. Two- things that you want to save, but not use currently, such as items you want to keep for your children someday, or mementos. These should get stored away in boxes, maybe in a storage area if space provides. Three- things that you use often and want to continue to use. These will get put away neatly.
2. Hang like items together. I put winter, or long sleeved items together, pants together, t-shirts together, etc.
3. Use space wisely. I like to fold items like sweaters and jeans, so I find a place (like rolling tubs under the bed) for these items. We also added a unit of metal wire shelving to the closet for t-shirts and the like.
4. Use leftover space for the “extras.” When in a new (or newly cleaned out) space, I put away the most important things first. This way you know how much extra space you are going to have. I hang belts, scarves, and ties after the rest, finding a place in each unique space that will make them handy.
5. Try it out. Use your new set-up for a few days. Make any changes after you have tried the system out for a while. If there is something that you use often and doesn’t seem handy enough, then you know what you need to arrange.
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I hope these help you a little bit in your organizing adventures. I, personally, am a very organized neat freak (its ok, I know it), so if you have an organizing dilemma, ask away!

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A Stumper

January 7, 2009 at 9:11 am (Projects) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

We have a question for any of you creative minds out there.  Our dog bowl and food situation is currently in need of fixing.  I am one of those hiders.  Everything should have a place and be kept out of site.  So, this is, of course, driving me nuts. 

Currently, there is a gap between our refrigerator and our stove.  The landlord would like to someday add another cupboard in between, which I can’t argue with because it would also give us more counter space (always good).  But, for the time being, we are using the gap as a space for a mat and the dog’s food and water bowls.  This I don’t mind too much;  the bowls are out of the way and accessible.  The real problem is what to do with the food bag.  We have a little drawer specifically for the dog, which holds his bones, treats, and brushes, etc.  We were buying small bags of food that would fit in the drawer, but they are a waste of money.  Now that we have upgraded to the large bag, we do not know where to keep it. 

Not so funny story:  I thought I would smartly store it behind the door to the basement steps.  Then last night it came crashing down, and what sounded like loud rain was the entire giant bag of dog food pouring down the stairs!

Here is the current situation:

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Does anyone out there have a better looking solution?  I can’t wait to get the ugliness hidden!  🙂

Romeo says hi and thanks for any help!

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Name That Chair

January 5, 2009 at 12:45 pm (Home Changes and Additions) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

I know I have posted pictures of this chair before, but I am still wondering. I saw this lonely little chair on the side of the road just waiting for the garbage man about a month ago (yes, the side of the road). I went straight home and begged Tony to go nab it for me. I mean the poor thing is adorable and in desperate need of saving. So, being the amazing and understanding guy Tony is, he drove his truck over to the house where I spied the chair and scooped it up.

When we got it home, we realized there wasn’t a thing wrong with it. It wasn’t broken, stained, or even scratched. It looked as though some one had owned it since it’s original day and finally used it in a garage or shop, as it was a bit dirty. They must have thought it wasn’t new enough looking to clean up. Well, I have news for these people. This chair is amazing. I scrubbed it with my handy dandy Magic Eraser (amazing also by the way!). And, the thing was soon good as new.

We now have the perfect addition to our pocket office. But, we were still wondering what kind of chair this is exactly. It is unmarked, but looks mid-cenury to me. I am no expert, but was guessing 50’s or 60’s. If any of you out there have seen another one of these, or have any info, please let us know!

Even if we never solve the mystery, we now have this truly cute chair all for our own!

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New Little Project

December 31, 2008 at 3:32 pm (Projects) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

 

I love finding odds and ends to fix up, remodel, or work on that I can then add to our home.  These little projetcs are fun for me and keep me busy.  This new task is a stool from my grandmother.  Its not new, not antique, not anything special really.  I almost truned it down.  But, she said that it opened up.  That caught my interest.  Then, she suggested that maybe I could keep some interesting photos in it.  BINGO!  I snatched it up in a hurry.  I love a bit of unexpected, and her idea of putting snapshots in the stool was perfect.  I plan to recover the top with some funky material.  I’m not sure if I will paint it yet.  Then I will add some old, random photos to the inside for company to explore.  Cute!  Any suggestions on print or paint?  Let me know what you think! 

 

So much potential...

So much potential...

 

Vintage photos tucked away in here would be perfect!

Vintage photos tucked away in here would be perfect!

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Here’s A Question…

December 10, 2008 at 7:11 pm (Our New House) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Here is the desk and the huge wall. The one picture is hung, but the other two are waiting to be framed.

Here is the desk and the huge wall. The one picture is hung, but the other two are waiting to be framed.

We are stumped.  We thought we had a brilliant idea for a cute and unique landing strip.  But, it doesn’t seem to be working.  When I was lilttle my grandpa had found my brother and I these little antique school desks.  Tony and I thought we could use my old desk as the landing strip.  The lid opens and it could hold all of our chnage, keys, mail, etc.  We put the desk on the empty wall near our back door.  But, suddenly the desk looked dwarfed.  I was hoping to find and old mail sorter or library card catalog to put there as well, but that is still a hunt.  We hung the vintage ad above the desk, which does add a pop of color.  I also have two other authentic vintage fruit labels to frame and hang there as well.  But, what about the desk?  Should we scrap the idea?  Or is it just missing something?  Hmm…

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