Monday, October 31, 2011
Happy Monday everyone and Happy Halloween! I still need to pick up some candy today to be ready for all of the little visitors tonight.
I have nothing overly fabulous to share today, just a bit of organization that was very much needed. Although, it feels pretty fabulous to me! This was my problem area: (or at least one of them! Trying to tackle one little spot at a time.)
Emily's bow drawer. It drove me batty to know which one I wanted each morning and spend 5 minutes digging through the pile trying to find it. That 5 minutes is PRECIOUS before school in the morning routine! I'd been wanting to get the majority of them out of the drawer for a while and finally did something about it. This was a 10 minute project that has made all of the difference.
Nothing about this project is new or original, just helpful! I took 3 strips of ribbon, some metal rings left over from curtain ring clips, and 3 flowers. Using a dab of hot glue I folded over the end of the ribbon around a ring and secured it. After pulling the heads of the flowers off of the stem, I glued them to the ribbon, covering the ring so it wouldn't show. I also pulled off the center of the flower and replaced it with a little jewel.
One quick tip: I discovered after these were finished and hanging up that the ribbon wasn't thick (bulky) enough to hold the barrettes and keep them from sliding down. So, I just took another strip of the thinner black ribbon and hot glued it to the back of the one already on the ring (like a ribbon sandwich with hot glue down the middle) and it worked like a charm.
Voila! 3 nails in the wall and we are set up! The hair-fixing process has been so much smoother and quicker since we can readily see our choices, and they don't get all squished in the drawer.
And this is how her drawer looks now. Amazingly it's stayed like this for a few weeks since we cleaned out. A place for everything, and everything in it's place.
Besides getting ready for this evening's festivities, here's what's going on around here today:
And, I'm hoping to have a massive garage sale this weekend, so I'm pulling and pricing.
It's now or never...we need our garage back!
Sunday, October 30, 2011
"Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord."
-1 Corinthians 15:58
Friday, October 28, 2011
Last night was the annual Senior Adult Fall Banquet at our church and I was asked to come up with a way to decorate the stage. It's kind-of difficult to think of ideas for something like this - it's a big space, tall ceilings, low budget, etc. I hunted around on the web and Pinterest a little but didn't come up with anything too inspiring. Just not a lot out there for decorating at a church!
A few weeks ago I attended a local holiday craft-type sale. The sponsors did a good job of decorating the common areas, and one thing I noticed was that they hung big thick branches horizontally along a curtained wall and dangled ornaments from the sticks. That got me thinking about the sticks, and as that stewed in my brain for a few days I decided to do big clusters of sticks all around the stage and fill in around them. It was free, big and dramatic, and filled up the space well.
I cleared everything off of my front porch and added those things in, and a friend brought up a park bench to use as well. I went outside my back fence and gathered branches from what my husband had trimmed off of our trees sometime earlier in the summer. Free, free, free! The only cost for the stage set up was $6.00 for the tissue paper for the poms. Pretty good!
Here's the result...the pictures are never as good as real life. It's hard to take good pictures in a room with no windows and fluorescent lights!
I used some thick burlap-type fabric pieces that I had to wrap around all of the branch containers to unify them. Some of them are just trash cans and vases!
I followed this very simple tutorial for the poms. I love them. (The dark one is really chocolate brown. It looks plum-colored here!)
The table decorations were done by a friend who organized the event. They were beautiful. Table centerpieces can be difficult because I always want something big and showy, but one has to remember that everyone seated at the table should be able to see around it.
She used styrofoam pumpkins and covered them with faux mums. I've seen this done with a real pumpkin and fresh flowers, but this is a great alternative if you want to be able to reuse year after year.
Lanterns were purchased at Ikea and will be used for many church functions in the future. For the event the candles were lit and placed inside.
This arrangement was on the grand piano.
I've already been recruited to help with decorations at our Women's Retreat in January (Thanks D!). We're racking our brains for ideas now and I'll share pics after that event. If you have any ideas to share, I'd love to hear them! The theme is "Life's A Trip" and we'll be going with a "trip" theme...vintage suitcases, maps, etc. Suggestions?
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
If you have young boys, please tell me your house looks like this too:
(No, I haven't dusted that spot in a while.)
It used to drive me crazy, but now I try to let it be a gentle reminder that it won't be like this for long...and treasure each moment.
Monday, October 24, 2011
This is more of an "after" than a "before and after", since this was a project that I did before I started blogging and taking pictures of everything. I think you'll get the idea though.
When we moved in to our current 15 year old home 4 1/2 years ago, all of the fixtures were original. The previous owner who had built the house made some very good choices on many of the "bones" of the house, but it was definitely time for some updating. We did a lot of painting, tiling, wallpaper stripping, etc. very quickly after we moved in and all of the lighting needed updating. This is similar to what was in the bedrooms...I'm sure you recognize the shiny white and brass combo:
I had already repainted the children's bedrooms and went in search of new lighting. I really would have liked to ditch the fans in favor of something more decorative. But, we live in Oklahoma and we use our fans in the bedrooms every night, usually throughout most of the winter as well. So, practicality won out on this one. I went to a couple of local home improvement stores ready to purchase new fans and could not find anything that caught my eye. Everything was just boring, too "old" looking, or just unattractive.
The fans were still in good working order, so I decided to work with what I had. I had covered fan blades in my son's nursery in a former house, so that gave me inspiration to do something fun with those. In addition to improving the blades we stepped it up a bit and decided to re-vamp the entire fixture. We (meaning my husband) un-installed the fans and took off the blades. I took all of the brassy metal parts outside and sprayed them a metallic bronze, and took the bases that attach to the ceiling and painted them the color that I wanted to complement the room.
In Caleb's room I had originally wanted to paint a wall with rugby-type multi-colored stripes, but we were in a time crunch when painting and I knew that would take WAY too long. So, I transferred the plan to his fan and ended up with this:
MUCH BETTER than the original and much more personal than anything I could have found at the store. I taped off the blades and painted them with acrylic paint and then applied poly as a top coat. I also replaced the clear glass globes with some $2 opaque globes from Wal-Mart.
We did this about 4 years ago and it has held up really well!
Originally I painted Emily's fan light pink. The blades were pink with green polka dots. Couldn't find a picture of that, but I've just redone her fan to go along with her new room, so you just get to see that one. It's more fun anyway.
I was lazy this time and didn't even take it down to paint it. I taped newspaper straight to the ceiling, taped off all of the bronze metal parts that I wanted to keep, and removed the blades and globes. Then, I put tarps on everything underneath me and sprayed the turquoise on the base right where it was. I may or may not have had to touch up a few blue spots on the white ceiling afterwards.
For the blades on this one, I chose one of the fabrics that I used in her room and traced the outline of the blade on it. When cutting the shape out, I cut about 1/8 of an inch inside the line so the fabric would be slightly smaller than the wood. I was also careful to line up each blade on the same part of the pattern in the fabric so that they would all match.
Then, I applied the fabric with mod-podge (underneath the fabric) and also did a layer over the top of the fabric and around the edges of the blade to "seal" the fabric on. I did 3 or 4 coats of the mod-podge (following the directions as far as drying times in between coats, etc.) to make certain that the fabric was sealed well and wouldn't peel and start flapping off as the fan rotated.
I finished if off with a splash of color with the red prisms, which I dug out of my Christmas ornament stash (I think they were from Target in years past) and tied to the ball chain with cute ribbon.
I'm so glad I spent the time to re-do these rather than giving up a few hundred dollars to buy new ones. I love their colors and the personality they bring to the room. Now I don't mind having the fans in there at all! (Except when it's time to clean them!)