My Productive Weekend

I had a crazy productive and busy weekend! Friday my mother-in-law came by to take Lilly for the night. Before leaving my husband showed up with leftover cake and about 50 helium filled balloons from work. They were celebrating the release of a new software (he’s a software developer) and the cake was big enough to feed his entire office of 100+ people with about 1/3 leftover. Here you can see Lilly showing off her blackened tongue from the icing. (His company colors are black and red.)


Then we went out to dinner with friends and to see a movie. On Saturday I decided it was time to do some brightening up in the living room. So, I took down the black mirrors on my living room wall to paint them red along with my fireplace vases and also to paint my black picture frames on my mantel silver. Then, I had to make two more trips to buy more paint because I seriously underestimated how much I would need. In between finishing that up Lilly came home and we took her to a birthday party at the park. Then we had a ton of friends over for paella and fun with helium. We ended up entertaining ourselves with helium induced high voices for a while so that was fun.

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Here’s a quick video showing Derek, my husband, and his high voice. 🙂


DIY Art Gallery for Kids


This is an easy and inexpensive way to display not only your child’s art but also important papers relevant to your family members like schedules and messages.

You will need:

– some sort of string/rope

– clothespins

– poster frame (any other large frame)

– hot glue gun

First, you need to remove the plastic or glass front and the back of the frame leaving you with only the frame itself. The frame I used was a $25 frame from walmart. They had cheaper, thinner frames but I wanted it to make more of a statement.

Then you can paint the frame if you want. I chose to paint my black frame a bright, cherry red to go with some other red things in my living area.

After painting the frame cut the string/rope to lengths that will extend across the width of the frame.

Then, using your hot glue gun, glue strips of string/rope across the width of the frame at varying intervals. I didn’t even measure. I just eyeballed it and it worked great.

You are now done! All you have to do is hang it on the wall and clip your clothes pins on!

I hope you like it! It makes it really easy to display things as soon as they come in the door instead of having to go through the pile of school papers from the week.

DIY Garage Cubby Unit


My parents came to visit this weekend and I enlisted my Stepdad to help me with a little project. I have been wanting to build a storage locker system for our shoes, bags and coats for a while. The system I had was not working and always looked junky. I found a project plan for lockers at that I used as my starting plan and just modified. It turned out great and will be super functional. It takes up less space than the 2 chairs and shoe rack system that I had before, looks more organized and is beautiful!



Now, to make it was really easy. Did you know that Home Depot will cut your wood for you for FREE! Well, they will! So, we went with our plan and measurements and as long as your not doing a ton of crazy sized cuts they will help you out. So, we got two big sheets of MDF and had them cut them to our measurements which ended up being one cut to each board to make them 72 inches tall. Then another to cut the 72′ into 16′ wide strips (that left a little bit of leftover wood) and then cut the extra from cutting the big board into 72′ into 3 16×16 inch squares. For all of the wood, hooks that I used for the wall later, brackets for mounting it to the wall, screws and paint I paid under $140 total. So, it was a pretty inexpensive project. It also only took about 2.5 hours to build.


When we got home we measure and screwed all of the pieces together to form a cubby hole top and bench cubby bottom. Then we painted it and mounted it to the wall using L brackets and dry wall screws. After attaching it to the wall we screwed some 3 prong hooks that I bought to the wall at the center of each cubby system as well as one on each side. I even added a cork board to the side that faces our door into the house so we can pin up things that are important or leave notes to remind us not to forget things. I bought the turquoise containers at Big Lots for $7 each for the bottom containers and $5 each for the top and I think they add a nice extra pop of color. I will probably customize it more with names and stuff later.I am super happy with the project and I hope it gives you inspiration!




DIY Bubble Chandelier – A Modification

I attempted to create an awesome bubble chandelier on a budget a few months ago. I wasn’t all that thrilled with the result and decided to modify it. This modification took about 3 seconds and drastically changed the look of the chandelier. It now looks like something you would spend big bucks on at a swanky store but it only cost me about $30 to make. To see how I created the bubble part you can look at my previous post. That was where all the work was. It was frustrating and took a good amount of time. But, part of the frustration was figuring out how to put it together. It involved a lot of trial and error. But, you won’t have to do that since I have done it for you. But, this is what it looked like before the shade was added.

Not as cool is it?

Now, to modify it all I did was lay the bubble part inside the shade from the top. So, the lampshade ring with all the glass ornaments tied/glued to it is simply sitting on top of the frame inside the lampshade! It’s not attached at all! But, it is very secure and cannot go anywhere. Then I simply tied thread to the the three bars coming up from the inner frame of the lampshade and hung them on the hooks that I already had in the ceiling from hanging just the bubbles. It was really easy and dramatically changed the overall look. I’m pretty excited.



10 Minute + $3 Bookcase Revamp


This project was inspired by all of the bookcase revamps you see on Pinterest and other home decor sites. However, I don’t want to spend a million hours precision cutting paper to fit my bookcase and I also don’t want to permanently change my bookcase with paint. So, I came up with this idea. I figured if I didn’t work then I had only wasted $3 on a roll of wrapping paper.

Well, it was not a failure! It worked perfectly. So, here’s what I did.

1. Remove all of the books as well as the shelves.


2. Tape the starting point of the roll to the center of the bookcase and let the remaining paper roll to the bottom of the bookcase. The roll of paper did not fit perfectly so I just centered it on the bookcase. This left a small space on each side that was not covered in paper. But, since I kept it even it looks intentional and works well. (I taped it by rolling the tape and placing it behind the paper so you couldn’t see the actual tape.)

3. Continue to tape at various points down the paper then cut the paper at the bottom so that it ends with the bottom shelf.

4. Replace the shelves and books and you’re done!

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I really wanted to bring a pop of color to these bookcases and this did just that. It didn’t take me long at all and I can easily change it when the mood strikes.

DIY Custom Art Prints for Cheap

I keep seeing all of these wonderfully inspirational quotes on Pinterest and saving them to a folder but I decided that I would like to put some of them up in my home so they can inspire me every time I walk by them. So, I started thinking about how I would go about doing this. My solution is pretty simple and anyone with powerpoint can do it.

Before reading my directions, make note that I am using Windows 7. Things may be different in older and newer versions.

Find a quote that you like. Then open up a new microsoft powerpoint presentation. Once in powerpoint go to the “design” tab and then click on “page setup” (it can be found in the upper left hand corner of the screen). Now a box should open that allows you to set your preferences for the orientation and size of the page you are working on. I selected portrait for all of mine but if you plan on going with a wider poster that hangs horizontal then you want to choose that option. Then, change the size to at least 20×30. It depends on what size you want to print out. If you are printing a larger poster then make your dimensions larger.

After modifying the design of my slide I simply began to add individual text boxes for each word or every few words in the quote that I liked. As I typed and created text boxes I played with different fonts for certain words as well as different sizes and colors. There is no limit to what you can create as long as you use your imagination and it doesn’t take very long at all! I decided to make a cute poster for my closet that is a Kate Spade quote. I also made a poster using a Roald Dahl quote that I love and I plan on making a small 4×6 photo print of that for a frame on my night stand. Then I took a page out of Pinterest and used the song lyrics to our wedding song to make two large poster prints to hang in our bedroom in place of some crappy circle paint art that I made and have since grown tired of. All in all I spent $5 on the 11×14, .14 cents on the 4×6 and $11 on the 20×30 prints. (I had a coupon for 40% off all photo stuff at Walgreens!) I’ll let you know how they turn out but I’m pretty excited to see the results.

I’ve included the files that I created and you’re more than welcome to use them if you like! Enjoy!

Custom Coffee Mugs

I decided to do this quick and easy project inspired by pinterest. It was super quick and I think the results are great!

You will need:
– 2 mugs (I bought mine at the dollar store)
– sharpie

The only limitation to this project is your imagination. I mimicked something I had seen but you could literally do anything. All you do is preheat your oven to 350 degrees, write on your mug with a sharpie and bake for 30 minutes. It was quick and, if you mess up you can always wipe it away (before baking it of course!) After you are happy with your sharpie marks you just bake it and it is now permanent!

I made these for my sister-in-law who got married recently but you could do so many things and you know…there are many colors of sharpies out there!

DIY Art – A Christmas Gift

My sister-in-law posted a picture of string art similar to this one with the comment that she would like one for our state, Arkansas. So, I thought I would surprise her for Christmas.

To make the string art you need:
– one board (I bought mine at Wal-Mart in the craft section unpainted for about $4.)
– paint color of your choice
– nails (I went with an oxidized looking nail. I thought they looked more retro and interesting than silver ones.)
– string (I used all purpose white thread. It’s a little thicker than regular thread. I also just used red thread for the heart.)
– a printed out image of your state or whatever you would like to make string art with

First, I painted my board. I chose lime green because my sister is kind of fun and I think it will match her home. Then I laid my map print out on the board and taped it down. Then I began to place my nails around the edge of the state lines. I then made a heart around the city that she lives in.

When I placed the nails for the heart I found that the board bent because there was nothing to stabilize it while hammering so I found a piece of styrofoam and placed it under the area I was nailing to make it easier.

Once I had placed the nails it was time to string it! I tied the beginning of my string to the first nail at the top left corner and then began to wind back and forth between the nails forming the heart and the nails forming the state shape. I had to use each nail making up the heart multiple times. I didn’t really count or anything I just did it until it looked like I should move on to the next nail. When I finished I tied the end of the string to the final nail which ended up being the same as my starting nail.

After doing the white part I decided that I would fill in the heart with red thread to emphasize that it was a heart. I followed the same method as I did with the white except that I stayed within the boundaries of the heart shape.

There you have it! A heartfelt piece of art that will hopefully make a great gift. My only problem with this project was that the nails I bought were a little difficult to use. Aesthetically they were very pleasing but they were not uniform and some were rather dull ended. This made it much more difficult to nail them to the board than if I had chosen uniform, sharp nails. But, It all worked out. Oh, as a note I actually did put some hot glue on the nail tips on the underside of the board to make sure they stayed in place while I was stringing them. I did this because my nails were not cooperating and kept popping out. I would imagine that if you used more uniform nails that weren’t so wide then you wouldn’t need to do this.

Soap Bubble Chandelier

I’m sure you’ve seen the glass ornament chandeliers on pinterest. I know I have. That is where this idea got it’s inspiration. However, mine has a few alterations to the one’s you might have seen and also a different look. While buying deco mesh for my Christmas decorating this year I saw clear glass ornaments that were on sale and remembered this project so I bought them. However, I knew I would be hanging mine over my bathtub so I bought ornaments with a slight iridescent quality. They look like soap bubbles. I decided that I would use the base ring of a lampshade for my frame and lucked out at Goodwill when I found a pale blue shade with crystals hanging from it’s base for only $2. After the ornaments and lamp shade you will just need clear thread/fishing line, 4 wooden skewers, a hot glue gun and 3 small ceiling hooks.

Once I had my supplies in order I cut the base of the lamp shade off. Then I cut the skewers to fit inside the lamp shade dividing it into eight sections and secured them with hot glue.

Then I used some cereal storage containers and clothes pins to keep the base stead while I attached the ornaments. I just eyeballed it and hung them at different levels using the fishing line and tying it into knots around the ornament hook and the skewers.

When it was done I screwed the three hooks into the appropriate locations around the light in my bathroom and then used some thread to make loops for hooking the the lamp shade to the hooks. I could have used the fishing line but I didn’t want the knots to slip (which sometimes happens with the clear stuff. The pictures don’t really do it justice but it looks really pretty. My daughter actually said “Look! Bubbles!” when she was in the bath and noticed it.

Quick, Easy & Awesome Pillow Tutorial

A while back I saw a post where you take a place mat and turn it into a pillow. After seeing that post I excitedly went in search of suitable pillow place mats but could not find any that I liked and that met the requirements. But, while at Target the other day I found these flocked faux bois place mats that I felt would definitely work and met the project requirements of being two pieces of fabric sewn together and not just one piece with no seams and at only $3.99 I figured it was worth a shot. I also grabbed two bags of poly fill for stuffing for $2.99 each. So the pillows ended up costing a little less than $7 because I didn’t use all of the stuffing.

So, how do you do it? You take your place mat and rip open one of the seams from one of the short sides. You don’t have to rip the whole seam. Then you stuff it with your poly fill. And then you sew the seam shut again. I just hand stitched it. This project literally took me less than 30 minutes and I love the pillows! I am actually going to go back and get a couple more place mats in a different pattern that will look great with these. It’s actually really sad how excited $7 but look like $40 pillows make me.