Monday, January 31, 2011

Wall Mount Flower Boxes

I am working on our Master Bedroom right now and wanted to come up with something fun and unique for the walls.  I came up with these wall mount flower boxes.  They are super cute and add just a touch of femininity without adding pink (which my hubby appreciates)!  

I found these great apple green hydrangeas at Michael's Dollar Days for $3 each (usually $5.99).

The galvanized metal bins are also from Michael's.  They are $5.99 each but I had a 40% off coupon!  woo hoo!  Love that!  I started out searching for a metal "something" that would hang on the wall but soon figured out I'd have to make my own.  I decided hot gluing a tooth hanger was the easiest method.  These metal bins can be used for so many different things, so I didn't want to do anything too permanent.  Not the prettiest method, but it worked!  Here's what it looks like:

I trimmed my flowers down (I did leave a little to bend on the end for more stability).  You can also use a little bit of styrofoam to help hold them in place.

They needed a little something extra, so I added some stick on numbers to the front.

I thought about stenciling the numbers, but decided I would rather leave it flexible so I can change them seasonally if I want.  I just used some stick on letters that I had.  They were red, so I painted them with some acrylic paint and stuck them on! 

The whole project cost me less than $30 and they are just so cute!!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

2011 the year to Take Risks...God's way.

I received this letter in the mail from Joyce Meyer Ministries and thought I would share:

Dear Treasured Friend,

Most people don't like to take risks. 

And it's easy to understand why.

There's seemingly too much at stake...too many things that could go wrong.

And as life moves along, the temptation to play it safe and settle for less grows stronger and stronger.

But risk is normally necessary for change.

When I say risk, I don't mean being irresponsbile, an adrenaline junkie or a thrill-seeker.  What I am saying is that God has great things in store for you, and for you to experience these things, you can't always play it safe and never get out of your comfort zone.

Sometimes, a leap of faith is absolutely necessary.  Sometimes, you have to be willing to take a RISK!

You see, if approached the right way, risk can be a very powerful tool.  In your Christian life, I can guarantee you that at some point, God will call you to step out and take a risk.

Today, I want to help prepare you to make 2011 the year when you take the greatest godlky risks of your life.

And not just for risk's sake --it's so you can experience more of the great things God's prepared for you.  Simply put, somtimes you have to walk through a door before you know what's on the other side!

So, are you ready to be a risk taker?

If so, you need to be ready to deal with risk's greatest obstacle...

The number one tool the devil uses to keep you where you are is fear.  He wants you to be afraid... afraid of making a mistake, afraid of looking silly, afraid of being judged, afraid of failing, afraid of being laughed at, afraid of not doing what God has called you to do.

Living in fear only accomplishes on thing -- it totally stops your progress!

There's a great example of individuals who conquered their fear and took a risk in 2 Kings 7.  Four men with leprosy sat outside the gates of the city of Samaria, which was in the middle of a famine and was surrounded on all sides by the Aramean army.

These lepers could have sat there afraid, complaining about their situation.  But instead, 2 Kinds 7:3,4 (NASB) says, ... [The men] said to one another, "Why do we sit here until we die? If we...enter the city... we will die there; and if we sit here, we die also. Now therefore come, and let us go over to the camp of the Arameans.  If they spare us, we will live; and if they kill us, we will but die."

Realizing their situation could not change unless they took a risk, these lepers walked straight into the enemy's camp, only to find that no one was there because God had confused the enemy and caused them to flee!  These men found themselves standing in the deserted camp of the enemy with plenty of food and provision all around them.

These lepers set aside their fear, took a risk... and God took care of them.  They set an example for you and me to follow.

When was the last time your obedience to God felt like a risk?  When was the last time you took a leap of faith?  Why just sit here?

I"m not necessarily asking you to dream up some incredible, unique, new ministry or world-changing idea.

Let's start simple.  The lepers didn't have to do anything unbelievable.  They just had to put one foot in front of the other and start walking, but they had to choose to get our of their comfort zone.

Each day you can take steps by asking God what you can do for Him.  This isn't complicated and you don't have to start a ministry to do it! Simply begin each day by intentionally asking the Lord: "God, what do You want to do through me today?" And here's the key... expect Him to answer you!

Once God has spoken to you, don't expect that goal to happen all by itself, and don't put it off because of fear.  That's our natural tendency.  We want to wait until the moment's just right or until  we feel completely comfortable.

There may be something risky God's already asked you to do that you've been putting off. It may be clear to you even as you're reading this letter.  If so, don't wait any longer.  You don't have to live in fear.  This new way of life can begin right now, and it will grow little by little.

When you feel fear, you can do it afraid because when God asks you to do something, He will give you the opportunity and ability to do it -- and He will more than take care off you when you do.

Ask Him to help you.  He will show you what you can do every single day.  I'm not talking about preaching sermons -- I'm talking about loving people, listening to them, keeping a godly attitude, being a joy to be around.  All of these can be risky because they expose us to the possibility of rejection, resistance or loss.  

As you're thinking about embracing risks to obey God, you might feel fear trying to stop you.  I understand -- I know what it feels like.  But don't let it stop you.  Do it anyway!  Fear doesn't have to go away in order for you to overcome it.  When the devil tells you it's okay to just stay in your comfort zone, tell him no way.

If Christians play it safe, nothing's ever going to change!
Don't play it safe. Don't be afraid of change. Don't settle for living in your comfort zones. Be adventurous and do some things you've never done before. Make a decision to boldly go for the things God's called you to do!

Believe me when I say that God honors people who take risks for Him.  I know this is true because I live it every day.  Ministry itself is a risk.  But every time we've stepped out in faith, God has faithfully provided whatever we needed to do what He's called us to do.  We started small, and now, because of people like you who give with a generous heart, we're able to reach people around the world.  

Giving can be risky -- but when we are determined to give all that God puts on our heart to give, we can change the world, one person, one family, one nation at a time....

...We're Risk takers in Christ,

Signed Dave and Joyce

P.S. Not only do I beleive 2011 is going to be our ministry's greatest year ever, I believe God wants it to be the greatest year of your life. But neither of us will experience this unless we're willing to trust God and take risks....

I know that was really long (excuse any typos from me retyping it), but I hope it spoke to you the way it spoke to me!!  I just wanted to say Amen after the last part about it being the greatest year ever!  I am expecting great things this year!!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Faux Board and Batten

Alright, I am jumping on the Board and Batten train and I LOVE it!  This little project is now known to my hubby as "Wayne".  When I first described this to my husband I used the term wainscoting.  He'd never heard of any of it, and decided Wayne was just easier.

So, here's how "Wayne" came together:
Sherwin Williams Paint - Satin - Color: French Roast - (we had some left over)
Behr Premium Paint and Primer in One - Semi-Gloss - Color: to match molding (P&P in one = pure awesomeness!)
7 - 8' 1x4s cut to 54"
2 - 8' 1x4s cut to 7'
1 - 16' molding peice cut to 14'
1 tube Liquid Nails
1 tube white caulk (make sure it's paintable)
Elmer's wood filler
Finishing nails (we used 2" nails)
Blue painters tape

When picking out your wood look for smooth pieces.  Also, if possible, make sure the board looks straight.  One of our boards was pretty warped and didn't set completely flush with the wall.  We My hubby used quite a few nails on that one to get it to lay right.

What started this whole project:

Notice the big empty space?? Yes, our wedding picture used to be hanging there.  We heard a loud bang one day and could not for the life us figure out where it came from.  About a week later we noticed the missing picture! lol  That really wasn't what started it, but was just sort of a kick in the rear to get going.

You know those projects that are looking so great and then you keep going and wish you would have just stopped while you were ahead???? These walls were one of those projects.  For some reason they just didn't turn out quite how I envisioned them in my head.

Three years later I decided it was time for a change!

We started out my marking down the wall where the two paint colors would come together.  I chose 5' tall.  This is no magic number it's just what I thought looked best in relation to the bed etc.  We painted chocolate on the top (because I love it) and white on the bottom.  (Tip: I am very glad we painted the bottom BEFORE we got the wood up.  Rolling was much easier this way)

We used one of the vertical 54" boards for placement, and attached the 2 - 7' horizontal boards the length of the room. (We had to use 2 boards together since we have a 14' room.  Tip: we used wood filler where the boards came together to give it a smooth finish.)

We spaced our vertical pieces approximately 17.75" apart. (be sure you check out where your outlets are)  Put a generous amount of liquid nails on the back of each piece and finish up with the nail gun.  We probably used 6-8 nails in each piece.  And yes I did use the nail gun!! (after my hubby assured me there was no way it would backfire ha!). It is loud though!

We put up the rest of the boards. Precise measurements are SO important here or the pieces won't come together right leaving you with gaps OR you will have to trim the boards. (I speak from experience)

We used the wood filler to cover the nail holes, and also fill in where the pieces of wood came together.

Last, attach your molding piece, which will serve as your shelf.  (I chose this mainly because it came in 16' pieces, so we wouldn't have to join anything together in the middle). 

We caulked every open edge so you would not be able to see any gaps between the wood and the wall.  Some places took more than others - we used enough to fill the space completely.

We used a few coats of paint since we were going over such a dark color.  We definitely needed a gallon.  If we were going over a white wall we could have gotten by with a quart easily.  

Now the fun part...

It really transformed the whole room and brings in so much more light! 

Check out additional tutorials here and here.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Knife Block Facelift

Thank you HOH for this awesome project!!!  Love it!!

I was so excited about it I almost forgot to take my before picture.  I wasn't about to put all the knives back in, but you get the idea.  Average... boring... knife block...

Fill in the logo with wood filler.  I actually did this step a few times until I couldn't feel any grooves with my finger.  Then sand off the excess so you have smooth finish.  This pic is before I sanded.

Then I painted with Rustoleum Heirloom White from Home Depot... so purdy!

I ordered my vinyl from the fabulous Shelley at Wonderfully Wordy.  She is awesome if you don't have a silhouette machine and need vinyl!  It was $3 including shipping.  I ordered it in my current fav - apple green!

Voila!  No more boring knife block!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Knock Off Pottery Barn Acanthus Pillar Holders

I am so excited about this project!  Mainly because it didn't cost me a thing! Woo hoo!

I was searching Pottery Barn the other day and came across these Acanthus Pillar Holders.  I just LOVED them and decided I needed some for my master bedroom!

I actually lucked out and had some wooden candlesticks around the house (left over from our wedding).  I purchased them at Garden Ridge a few years ago.  The tag on the bottom says $14.99, but I think they were on sale when I bought them.

I almost forgot to take a before pic, so here they are about to be spray painted!

I spray painted them with Rustoleum Heirloom White from Home Depot.

I waited about 15 minutes and took some 80 grit sandpaper to them!  The paint was dry to the touch, but I think it helped that it wasn't totally dry all the way through.

Love them!

Silhouette Machine Giveaways!!!

OOOOhhhhh I just LOVE giveaways!!!

House of Smiths, The Shabby Chic Cottage, Keeping it Simple, AND All Things Thrifty are all giving Silhouette Machine's away!

How fun!!

Friday, January 14, 2011

21 Day Organization Challenge with a bowl full of lemons! - Part 2

Day # 11
The Freezer

I"m a little behind!  I didn't quite get this done yesterday, so I'm making up today.

I really needed this one!!  I don't think I'd cleaned out my freezer since....  EVER!

What a mess....

So I pulled everything out...

I've heard vinegar is good to clean the fridge so you don't use chemicals, so that's what I used!

I sorted through the food, and threw some things out...

Ahhhh... clean freezer...

Sorted by date...

I guess I know what I'll be cooking next week! 

Tidbit: On tupperware for leftovers I use a dry erase marker to write the date I made it and use by date!  It stays on in the freezer but washes off when you want it to!

Day #12
The Spices  

This cabinet doesn't get used too often....

ahhhhhh.... so nice

Tidbit: Invest in these turntables from Bed Bath and Beyond.  They aren't too expensive if you use your 20% coupons.  They are SO worth it!

Do spices go bad???? Some of these were expired but they were full so I kept them anyway.

Day 13 & 15
The Medicine Cabinet

This is probably the WORST area in our home.  I have been putting this off... and putting this off...  We put these cabinets in about a year ago and they just became the tossing ground for... well... just about everything that didn't have a home!

I threw away about half the things in this cabinet.  I will admit (shamefully) - there were things in here that expired in 2007!  '07!!  Oh my goodness...

And then I replaced the empty space with some things that were under our sink.  I think I need more baskets! 

Day 14
Bathroom - Under the Sink

Our Master Bath has always been a huge issue in keeping organized. 

The drawers to the right have definitely helped.  But as you an see, they're a mess.  I forgot to take a before pic of the inside of the drawers. We'll just say they looked a lot like my junk drawer...

So my tibdit for today:  Think about what containers work for your routine and your space.   When I originally organized this space I did use containers and drawers, but I definitely didn't use the right kind!  On a typical day, this this is what my counter looks like...

I decided to get rid of the container I had, and replace it with 4 different containers, sorted by which products I use the most.  I put the items I use everyday in one basket so I can pull that one out and slip it back in when I'm done getting ready.  I put the items I only use periodically in the baskets at the back.

I also organized the drawers to the right and used additional containers in them.  I found all my containers at the 99 cent store, and they were all (guess what) 99 cents!  Haha

I also found a use for all those baby food containers I've been saving...


Day 16
Cleaning the Fridge

So glad I didn't go to the store yesterday! Here are the pics from today's challenge:

Too it ALL out!

Washed it all...


SO much better!  And in need of some groceries!

Tidbit of the day:  I've never done this before, but I am definitely doing it from now on.  I have everything grouped together in the side like Toni did (ex: ketchup, mayo, mustard... all together).  I had two of so many things in the fridge and I never noticed!  Especially pickles... probably left over from pregnancy cravings. haha

Day 17
Mobile Command Center

I can NOT believe how fast the past 17 days have gone!!  Only 4 more days!!  I can tell a HUGE difference in our house.  It's amazing how quickly I am able to find things and I now know exactly what we have in our house!

So today's challenge was the paperwork.  I have been waiting for this challenge and let me tell you I needed it - badly!  Here's the before (please don't look too closely at the mess in the background!):

I found some really cute folders at Walmart.  They seemed expensive to me (around $5 for 6 of them), but I didn't need many of them, so I thought I would splurge!

I actually had this fantastic organizer that has made it through many moves - I think it may be from college???  I just knew I would need it one day!  It's faded, but it works perfectly.  Now I just need to think of something cute to do with it!

Tidbit of the Day:  This is a pretty useful one that I picked up from my mom.  As you will see I didn't make a folder for my coupons.  I actually keep them in a plastic envelope that is easy to take with me.  I don't have a picture because it is in my car right now!

Day 18

Thank goodness I just did this one about a month ago! Sorry no before and after pictures.   You've seen enough of my messy spaces to guesstimate!

We don't have too many keepsakes, since we've only been married a few years, and our little guy is still... well... little.  AND my parents thankfully haven't made me take anything out out of there attic yet.  Basically all we have are cards from our wedding, pictures etc.  I keep everything in my pie cabinet with other crafty things, sewing machine, and scrapbooking papers.

Honestly looking at this picture it still looks a little chaotic, but it is MUCH better than it was and with me being a day behind it will have to do for now! =)

I keep all of our cards in our card box from our wedding.  I'm still trying to come up with something fantastic to do with these, so if you have any ideas let me know!!

Tidbit of the Day:  This is actually more for me than anyone, BUT I've discovered that I have amazing intentions for scrapbooking.  I have a book for every year my hubby and I dated, a book for my little man, a book for our wedding.  However... NONE of them are finished!!  I'm hoping that one day I will get motivated and finish them all, but for now, I purchase the picture books from shutterfly.  I've realized that they're smaller, easier to make additional copies to share with family members, and so much fun to go back and look through!  And they don't take nearly as much time to create!! So I think for now I'm pretty hooked on the Shutterfly books.  They always have amazing deals and they just always turn out so good!!

Now I'm off to clean out the master closet - whew!

Day 19
Master Closet


The mess...

Let me give you a little background on our closet.... it's about 10 feet long and VERY narrow and FULL wall to wall.  Don't judge me - I worked retail for 7 years.  To say this is WAY past due is an understatement.  This is like many years past due.  Here is one of my goodwill piles.

I have a SUPER hard time giving away clothes (and shoes).  They hold sentimental value to me, sort of like they're a part of who I am, part of a chapter of my life.... I know SO cheezy!  So here's what I did to "let go".

I tried on EVERYTHING! Yes, EVERYTHING! With just recently having a baby I had absolutely no idea how anything fit.  I stood in front of the mirror and asked myself how I felt in that shirt, pant etc.  If it didn't make me feel great, wasn't comfortable, or was out of style it got tossed.

A very wise woman once told me - if you keep things that you're on the fence about you're not going to be able to find the clothes that make you feel fabulous!  (who doesn't want to feel fabulous???)

Okay so enough of my rambling.  This project is going to take probably the next week to finish.  I just wanted everyone to know I wasn't slacking!

This one will just have to be continued....

Day 20

The majority of my photos aren't printed out yet, so this project was pretty easy for me!  The photos I do have printed are organized and at the top of my closet in boxes.

The rest of our pictures are organized and on SmugMug.  I started using smugmug when my son was born.  It's not too expensive - I paid 1 full year up front.  I upload all of our pics there so it's easy to share them with family and friends.  I chose smugmug because there are so many options for privacy and it also allows people to download them and get them printed off themselves.

Day 21
My Pick!!

I finally finished the master closet!  Woo hoo!!  It was a HUGE task, but it is finally finished!!

My tips for the master closet:
  • Use the same style of hanger for each category of clothes
  • Hang up clothes with the hanger facing the same way. Always make a ? with the hanger - clothes face you and hanger is always the way a question mark would face.  That's a tip I picked up while working my many years in retail. 
  • Hang clothes according to style and color
  • Don't keep things you don't wear!
  • I personally give the dry cleaning hangers to goodwill.  They have a sharp point that can damage clothes.  I DO keep their pant hangers though and use those for all my pants. They are great pant hangers!
This idea came from my brilliant dad!  This is our laundry sorting system, and I LOVE it!  This is in our master closet - ceiling to floor laundry baskets!  Of course I had to add some cute tags - you can find the tutorial here for those.

It's a great way to keep your laundry baskets organized.  Here is a look at the hardware we used to put them up. 

I don't have step by step instructions because we did this so long ago, but e-mail me if you have questions!  it's a life saver!!

I can't believe the 21 days are over!!  What an accomplishment this has been!!  This week I am relaxing and enjoying my organized home!