Friday, September 18, 2015

Candy Corn Jars

Let's just preface this as I was hesitant to post this but everything we do is a learning process so I am going for it. I would describe this as a partial Pinterest fail, but I think it takes practice and technique.

I saw these adorable Sabrina Soto candy corn jars on Pinterest and decided it looked easy enough. I also saw where people were using a glue gun and writing on mason jars and then covering in paint. So chic, right?

I tried is all I can say. I must have the crappiest handwriting and the crappiest glue gun and combining them, well.... It must take lots of practice is all I am saying. But again I tried :-)

I used a spaghetti sauce jar in fear I would flub this up and waste a mason jar.

Lesson 1 - not only do you have to remove the label, also be sure to scrub the ink stamped time stamp off the jar (Windex pulls it off with a little help of your fingernail). I didn't and when the paint hit the time stamp blue ink ran down my jar. I was wiping it off with my fingers. This also lead to me over spraying and the paint dripped.

Lesson 2 - After you glue gun write your words, good luck painting over it! Again it gets into the spaces and loops, pools and then drips. Also with the 3 colors, it is hard when taping off around the lettering so I didn't get a good seal and it dripped into the finished color! Ugh, re-painting to do. And no I was not too close I was a good 12-18 inches from that jar!

Lesson 3 - Pull your tape off ASAP! I let it dry because I needed a second coat, and it pulled off the dried upper paint color I already finished. So I had to back track and re-do the white!

Lesson 4 - Probably better to use a plain jar or a mason or ball jar and not try to do the glue gun writing on these multi color jars that requires taped sections. If you feel confident go for it, but I am not sure I am the woman for that job!

Lesson 5 - Have a practice jar, if you mess it up you learn from the first jar. This is what I am showing you today.

My little jar despite all its challenges from a distance is very cute! Up close its a hot mess but still you can see what I was trying to do. I decided to use a thin black ribbon at the color separation lines to cover up some imperfections (haha, the whole jar is an imperfection) but it did help distract from many of the flubs on my jar. I do like the contrast the black ribbon adds. I didn't have the heart to pitch this jar, I think I may use it outside this year and put some flowers or twigs in it.

My kids and I are still working on other jars that are coming along much better now that we know what to do and what not to do.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Sister's Kitchen remodel with new pictures

Not much to say but I promised better and more pictures of my sister's kitchen. She will want to kill me because she didn't know I took these but oh well...

I did get pictures of the entire room.

Here is a sneak peek of the bathroom changes she is making:

Friday, September 4, 2015

Sister's Kitchen Remodel Progress - Continued

My sister Michelle has been renovating her 1960's era house for the past couple years since she bought it. She has a full time job and 2 kids, one is a college Freshman at Ohio State University and the other is a 5th grader. So she is pretty busy. In addition to this she is trying to update her house.

She bought the house from the family of the original owner, and looking through the house they stopped making updates at some point in the late 1970's - mid 1980's. She has a lot of work to do to get the house updated and looking the way she envisions it in the future.

Part of reno is having money so she has gotten a second job in order to save money toward her renovations, so change is happening but slowly. I last showed you pictures a month ago of her kitchen progress to date, she had just installed new counters, dishwasher, sink and a new light fixture. She is still working on her cabinets and walls. Her floor is less than a year old and her refrigerator is newer as well.

Just a quick update! She finally got a new stove and replaced the old green one. The black is a huge improvement! And she has started hanging her glass tile sheets.

These pics were taken with her phone so they are not the greatest, but I hope to visit soon and will get better pictures!

Plus she just had Bath Fitters re-do her main bathroom tub, so I cannot wait to see that in person and take a few pics to share here.

I like posting these progresses to remind me that slow progress isn't a bad thing. She is working to save the money to pay for these renovations out of pocket - in cash and that is really an accomplishment to be proud of. Can't wait to show you more!

Have a Happy Labor Day Holiday!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Pottery Barn Glassware

Photo Credit: Pottery Barn
Hi friends. I have been looking for new glassware and want something sturdy, simple and classic. The reason I want simple and classic is because if a piece chips or breaks I will be able to easily replace the broken glass.

Photo Credit: Pottery Barn
I looked at many stores (except Crate & Barrel - darn it!) but Pottery Barn had a very simple pattern that I really like. As for price I could get a cheaper set at Target, Walmart, etc... but I like how heavy these are and that I can buy them by the piece.

Photo Credit: Pottery Barn
I am lucky to have a Pottery Barn Outlet store about 40 mins from my house so I decided to drive there to look around and hoped they would have my glasses and they did!!  I actually only bought 1 style which was the pints so I could live with them and to see if I really liked them. The style is plain and goes with anything and the weight is perfect. The style is the PB Classic Barware. And if you have seen it you know what I mean when I say it is plain, as in no texture or pattern on the glasses. I did want a patterned glass but the more I looked the more I wanted simple and something that can be paired with just about anything.

Photo Credit: Pottery Barn
This style of glassware has the pints, double old fashioned, and water goblets (which are my favorite), and other barware pieces like flutes, stemless flutes, wine and balloon wine, margarita and martini glasses. And the outlet the prices are $2.99 - $4.99 per piece. So overall I am pretty happy about that. Anyone who knows how I shop knows I put a limit on what I can spend per store so I will buy these in a couple trips to the outlet. Plus being a PB customer I earn points on my purchases so after spending $250 I get a $25 gift card.
Photo Credit: Pottery Barn
You can buy these in sets of 6, but I like to have dishes in sets of 4 so that is why buying by the piece is my preferred way to get the glassware. Can't have 8 place settings and only 6 glasses, that would make me insane! Also, if you buy online or through a normal Pottery Barn store you can get your glasses monogrammed. If you don't want the monogram and want a better price (at outlet pricing I get 2 free) the Outlet is the way to go!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Street Level Vegan Leather Tote Bag - Nordstrom's

I have not been doing much in terms of projects in the past week. I have been trying to recover financially as I have some bills I must get paid off first and I just wanted some time to rest and hang with my kids, you know just enjoy what I have accomplished.

My next project will be the master bathroom, similar to what I did in the kids bathroom. I want all my bathrooms to match in cabinet colors and style. I have been spending considerable time purging and donating and doing some deep cleaning in the bedrooms, particularly the kids bedrooms. I am also doing up keep to the cleaning, weeding, and small paint touch ups around the house. So I will get back on board with my next project soon.

As part of my chillin' I took Brooke to a local mall, Kenwood Town Center to walk around and window shop and to have a treat. Aaron was not interested in this at all!

We got to go to the Top Shop launch at Nordstrom, which had some really cute clothes and accessories, got to enjoy some refreshments and listen to the music the DJ was playing. However Nordstrom, if you are listening, discounts would have been nice for those of us who came and purchased at the Top Shop, hint hint, not all of us get free clothing/credits/pay from shameless rstyle shilling. The Top Shop launch was a very playful environment. While there I found the Street Level Vegan Leather tote bag that I have been eyeballing for all of 2015! They only had 1 left in the color I wanted so I decided after all these months to get it before its gone forever.

This is a big bag and reversible! I got the cognac and aqua combination. The cognac is a rich brown and the aqua is completely opposite and contrasting with the very light aqua tone. I prefer the aqua tone as it is very pretty and feminine and perfect for summer months, but the cognac will be gorgeous as autumn arrives and we switch to darker tones. Plus the contrast of inner and outer purse is striking.

I have been seeing Megan at Honey We're Home lugging this bag around in many of her clothing posts (making me jealous) and I was wanting it but at $48 I was hesitant to move forward with getting it. I know $48 isn't much but when you already have too many handbags its hard to justify $48 on a fake leather tote. Now that I have waited like 8 months and liked it in person and the color is being phased out for more autumn tones, I decided I was at the point of getting it.

Brooke loves it too, she carried it thru the mall and put all our little purchases in the bag as we went from place to place. It comes with a small inner pouch/wristlet that is aqua and Brooke was able to put her phone in the pouch for easy retrieval as she needed it.

You can buy it online or in person. I was glad I waited to see it in person though as I didn't think I liked it at first but as the minutes went by and I reversed it to aqua side out I liked it more and more. It comes in gorgeous colors (as in I could easily have more than 1 of these!) like cognac/black, cognac/burgundy, cognac/aqua, dark grey/light grey, navy/taupe, and pink/taupe.
Monday, August 24, 2015

Extra Bedroom Completed

My goal in this room was to remove the "kid" from it. This was used as a kids zone for the past 12 years so reclaiming it and making it more grown up has been on my list for about 2 years.

Gone is the green sherbet colored walls and the little monkey prints and the toys. I re-used the existing twin sofa sleeper loveseat, the unfinished cabinet, and the wood laminate side table with a little DIY help and painted the walls a more soothing neutral color. Then I shopped my linen closets and found an old pair of sheers that have embellishment on the bottom instead of purchasing new curtains. After all I had set a budget to stay within.

After painting, moving furniture, and hanging curtains it became clear that the walls were looking pretty naked so I had to do something on the cheap to stay within my meager budget. Dollar Tree, Pinterest, and my color laser printer saved the day and I was able to create my pretty beach art wall for $6 plus an extra $12 in Command 3M picture hanging strips.

Before removing the kids bin and chair

After removing the kids bin. For now shoe rack will stay on wall but may eventually go into closet.

I painted my unfinished cabinet and my little wood laminate side table Behr Mourning Dove and sealed it with General Finishes Top Coat Poly Eurthane. Bought new handles for the cabinet sprayed gold with Rustoleum Metallic Gold.

Before: toy bins, boxes and old carpet
After: Cozy spot to watch TV or read

I still had 1 wall that was pretty cluttered. It held a kids toy bin, a chair, and plastic shoe racks. They had function but looked out of place in my new room. I was at $97 and my budget was $100.

I felt the room needed a dresser and I found the Ikea Tarva was on sale for $126 and I really need a dresser but I really wanted to stay within my $100 budget. I have a mirrored console table sitting unused in my basement and I decided to try it in the room as a dressing table. Looks great and I can use this as my new dressing table to hold my necklaces I wear most and my makeup bin and makeup mirror.

After: adding pictures, lamps, pillows, decor, and painting side table

At HomeGoods I found two adorable purple stools for $49 so I bought both to let my daughter choose one so I could take her desk chair (which is a childhood vanity chair). And while I was there I spotted a tall mirror that was $59 to be used as a leaner behind the door. So I went over budget by $109 plus tax!! But I think worth it.

Later I may choose to replace the mirrored console table with the Tarva 6 drawer dresser and nightstands but for now I think the room is functional and cozy. I also added an unused TV from the basement to my cabinet so the room can be used as a reading or TV room. I am finding that my kids now are in this room everyday.

 After a good cleaning of the carpet and sofa sleeper, I FINALLY am happy to say my room is finished! So the final tally on my fabulous new room is $212.
Friday, August 21, 2015

HomeGoods Finds - Leaner Mirror and Purple Stool

I am really dragging out my extra bedroom here, ha! HomeGoods is easily one of my favorite local chains. It is hit or miss though depending on what day of the week you go in. Last week I must have gone in on the right day.

Mirrors were overflowing as well as furniture that day. I wasn't looking for anything in particular but just looking in general. I stumbled across 2 gorgeous vanity stools one was more of a bright magenta-ish purple stool and the other was a more grapey purple color stool both were priced at $49. My guess was my daughter would like the grapey color stool but I stopped myself and left the store to get back to work. The next day I went back for the stool, and it was gone!!!
True Color - Bright magenta/purple

But I decided to look around and luckily found the stools, inventory had been moved around, whew! I sent pictures to my daughter and she liked the grapey color stool but I decided to buy both so she could see them in person. But some lady came over and started pawing all over the stool and was telling her daughter she was going to buy it. HELLO, Do you not see me standing here with my hand on the stool? Did that not imply I had already claimed the stool?
True Color- Light girly grapey purple
Well as soon as she turned away I grabbed both stools and walked over by mirrors and put them down long enough to grab a cart. When I came back with my cart and loaded the stools I looked up and the mirror caught my eye! Wide silver frame and totally gorgeous and it was only $59! SOLD
Stool that was a bit smelly and the one that got returned

Long dramatic story cut short, my daughter still chose the grapey colored stool so the brighter one went back, but it wasn't too upsetting it was a bit smelly!!! Not sure what was up with that stool.

I swapped her old chair for the new stool and put her chair in the extra bedroom along with the leaner mirror. This does put me over budget for the extra bedroom by a little over $100 but no complaints here. Love HomeGoods, love the stool, and love the mirror!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Crystal Deodorant and Secret Outlast Gel Deodorant

I am veering off the beaten path here today. I needed to buy deodorant one day and was specifically looking for something gel, because I was so tired of the invisible "won't leave white marks on your clothes" deodorant leaving white marks all over my shirts. It was so annoying.

I went to DrugMart and in the deodorant aisle I found Crystal deodorant. It is a stick that is a mineral salt deodorant. You have to wet it with water and then apply it. It supposedly lasts about a year and it is supposed to block or kill the bacteria on your skin that makes you stinky. It is also endorsed by the Cancer Society. This stick can be used anywhere on your body that isn't pleasant according to the label, so essentially you can slather this stick all over if you need to.

Being so intrigued I had to buy it and it was on sale so I paid about $5 for the stick. I also bought a gel deodorant Secret Outlast. You have to wet the crystal stick under your faucet and rub it on, I have to re-wet a couple times. I let it dry on my skin (when in a hurry the hair dryer is used to speed things along, lol) and then I apply the Secret outlast gel deodorant.

After using this a few days to a week I noticed that I was fresh as a daisy all day long and I was not sweating much if any at all, typically by end of day I would be at a point where I need a shower but now I will say it is like I just got out of the shower at day's end. The stuff is awesome!

I do use it alone (without the Secret Outlast) and still amazing! I am just brainwashed by the deodorant industry and think I need the "real" deodorant. But the Secret Outlast is good too, but that Crystal Deodorant is magical or something.

I now have my 12 year old daughter using the Crystal stick too. I can tell when she either has not used it or hasn't used it effectively (meaning not wetting the stick enough). The other day she was a bit ripe in the car and I asked her did she forget her deodorant today and she said no I have deodorant on and I then asked the crystal deodorant? and she said no only dove deodorant. The next day she did the crystal deodorant and Secret outlast and what a difference!

The thing to watch on this deodorant though is on the label it warns that you cannot leave the stick on a natural stone counter. I don't have stone counters but regardless I am keeping this in a plastic bin in my linen closet so I don't have salty drips on the counters.

It's worth a small investment of $5-6 to try out this awesome deodorant!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Dollar Tree Wall Art - Extra Bedroom

For my extra bedroom I decided the walls were looking barren and something had to go up.

I hate popping holes in the walls, but looking at the naked walls was not working for me. I wanted to keep the room simple and uncluttered.

This room is small like 10x10, and the sofa sleeper is loveseat sized so finding art that was appropriate in scale was important.

Needing to stay within my budget is critical too. My budget was eaten up in paint and cabinet hardware. I was lucky to have just enough spray paint for the hardware, poly eurthane, and furniture on hand so my $100 budget was do-able. But I still was left with $21 in my budget to get me some kind of art on the walls.

My first decision was either 3 11x14 pictures or 6 8x10 pictures to hang over the loveseat. But I know frames are not cheap and there was no way I was doing this for $21. I decided to pay a visit to Dollar Tree to see if they would have anything that might work and ...... they did!

I found these frames in 8x10 in a champagne color for $1 each! Yay! I was thinking worst case was I may need to spray paint them, but the color was good. Let's be real they are $1 frames so they are cheap plastic frames with a little piece of glass and cardboard backing, but they look really nice. I went with 6 because I like that the frames are stacked and makes it seem much bigger than the wall space really is.

I did pull the swing arm and all the little metal bits off the backing. I used Command 3M picture hanging strips to hang these little darlings. I paid about $12 for the strips.

Next was what to put in the frames. I like the beach and the colors, blues, tan, aqua, white. So I went onto my art board on Pinterest and pulled up the pictures I liked best. I captured them with Snag It and cropped the pictures. I printed at 5x7 with the picture centered on 8x11.5 inch paper.

The centered picture creates a white border and I thought I would buy mattes to go over my prints but it was not needed, the white border in the frames looks like matted prints. So even less money to spend.

I used a ruler and a level to get my pictures on the wall centered, level, and evenly spaced. The frames look really good and I love the little beach scenes that goes perfectly with my neutral walls and aqua touches.

TO DO List:
paint walls
paint baseboards
clean blind
move sofa 
paint cabinet
poly cabinet
paint cabinet hardware
paint side table
poly side table
pictures or mirror?