Thursday, December 30, 2010

Overload

Once upon a time there was a girl. Girl decided she'd like to redo her house. There were obstacles besides the usual one--budget. The holidays were approaching, but more importantly, a daughter was coming! To add to the insanity, she started a blog to document the process.

Guess what? Everything has come to a head. All at once! Rooms are in disarray, unable to be finished due to holiday obligations (parties, gift buying, parties, gift wrapping, parties, putting up decorations, parties, taking down decorations, PARTIES).

We received word our daughter is ready to travel (more gift buying, airline tickets, finding a place to stay, figuring out sight seeing stops, finishing her room -- done!, buying clothes -- couldn't do much of this earlier, not knowing what size she'd be or exactly how old she'd be when she arrived, buying food and diapers).

And then to top it all off, the blog experienced technical difficulties.

I don't know how much time I'll have to blog in the next few days. But I'm here! I'm hurrying and scurrying around dealing with the craziness and best possible scenario. A busy house, happy children, a new baby coming, and lots of great projects I'm really excited about.

Truly happy holidays!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Quick Lamp Makeover

Spray paint really is the bomb, isn't it?

I have these two lamps. They were Mr. RBR's before we were married. I think a family hand me down. I made them over years ago, chucking the dated pleated shades in favor of some champagne silk looking ones. And to deal with their brass finish, I spray painted them... flat black?!

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What the heck was I thinking? I went through a black phase about 7 years ago. I painted just about every piece of furniture black. I can't explain it really. I guess I thought it was cool. I have nothing against black itself. I still like it. But sometimes, man, it's just TOO MUCH.

This time I decided they needed something... fresher. Valspar Mediterranean spray paint to the rescue. And this time in gloss, thankyouverymuch.

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After 3 quick coats the lamps have a new life. They great in our bedroom.

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This nightstand is actually the nightstand that goes with my daughter's (I will have a daughter in 9 days!!) bedroom set seen here.

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The silver pull is from the vanity in her room! ha! Using what you have... it's free!

In case you think every thing in the RBR house is beautiful, there's a reason I haven't shown you our entire bedroom.

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Sheesh. Can you believe I made that valance and thought it looked good? Looks like dirty hankerchiefs hanging from a rod. And I haven't even showed you the mirrored closet doors yet.

Our bedroom is on the list for a mini makeover. Nothing major. New curtains, some rearranging. But that will have to be another day. Let's just focus on the lamps for now, ok?

Lamps before.

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And after.

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Thanks for visiting!

Linking to some of these great parties.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Easy Peasy Scarves

I have no clue why, but the boys LOVE to play with my scarves. SCARVES! They use them to dress up, but they also become snakes, tow straps, and all sorts of weird boy things.

Most of the time I don't care if they play with my scarves, but sometimes they get a little dirty being drug all over the floor (yeah, yeah. I should clean more often). After I spotted this tutorial on Hi Sugarplum, I thought it'd be perfect if they had their own scarves.

I let the boys pick out their own fleece patterns, and bought just 9 inches (one quarter yard) of each of four patterns. I think the the total was about $6.50.

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They LOVE their new scarves. Since we've made them they've taken them with them everywhere--even to bed at night (not around their necks, of course. They won't strangle themselves in the night).

One tip about the scarves. The fleece I bought was on 60 inch (5 ft) bolts, so obviously it makes a 60 inch scarf. I think it's a little short for an adult--although perfect for kids. I measured a nearly identical fleece scarf I have from Old Navy, and it's actually 6 ft long. I'd consider buying 2 yards (6ft) of fleece and cutting them the opposite way if you are going to make scarves for adults. Of course that means you'll have 6 scarves of the same pattern, which if you're making them for gifts is not necessarily a bad thing.

Did all that make sense? I'll illustrate.






















Happy scarf-making!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Shut the Front Door!

I am completely in shock! The boys room is currently being featured on ohdeedoh.


Can you believe it? I am thrilled!

I've made a couple of changes from the original post already. In fact despite a couple of little projects I'd like to do, I'm officially declaring the room "done".

Let's take a tour.

The boys love cars and trucks, so of course the starting point was a large monster truck mural.

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It's based on the Tonka truck illustrations. It actually was a birthday card to Zack for his 4th birthday from my brother. When I saw it's simple shapes, I was pretty sure I could duplicate it. And that the the boys would LOVE IT.

Most of the changes I've made since the original post are on the mural wall.

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I added the boys' names, which I had planned to do all along. I also added a couple kid-sized folding chairs (antique store find), hung on the wall with hooks. It makes a darling kid-sized reading nook, don't you think?

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And the folding chairs can be put away for more playing room.

Here are their beds, a $50 craigslist find.

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Topped with sheets from Tarjay and navy and red comforters from Penney's.

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The wooden dump truck (antique store find) is still there. To preserve the crackle-y paint, I sprayed it with matte sealer.

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The train (second hand store find) got the same treatment.

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Above the train, in the window nook area, I added a couple sprayed clipboards in place of frames.




































Find the original clipboard post (and how-to) here.

Just for fun, I did find a "before" picture. This is a picture of the nursery completed, but before we had children. I took the picture for our homestudy to adopt Zack.

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Who knew just a year and a half later we'd have TWO energetic, monster truck-loving boys?

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Monday, December 20, 2010

Teacher Gift

Since my oldest only just started preschool, this whole school thing is new to me. And at the last minute I panicked--I need to get a teacher gift. What to get, what to get.

I made them (the teacher and the assistant, both women) felt flowers. Felt flowers again! I can't help it I think they're so lovely. And so I made a third for myself.

I made them in cream. So beautiful for winter, don't you think?

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A new addition is a hair clip on the back. So you can pin it or clip it.

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Here are the pins and clips I used. I just hand sewed them on before gluing it together.

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Ahhh. Lovely.

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The original tutorial I used is found here.

Linking to some of these great parties.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

It's time!





















Got the call today that we can go to South Korea and get Delaney after the first of the year!

HOORAY!! Happy, HAPPY New Year!

Genius or New Low?

Anyone else giving their kids a Christmas gift they found on the curb?

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We had a family move out of the neighborhood last week. The kids were getting older and they left this on the curb. I let it sit a couple days, until I couldn't stand it any longer. I took it home. I have a little time yet to fix it up (yes, of course I'm going to fix it up before I give it to them).

So what do you think? Am I a thrifty genius, or have I hit a new low--literally giving my kids garbage for Christmas. Well it's not for you to decide, it's up to these guys.

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Uh oh. I might be in trouble. They look decidedly underwhelmed.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Genetic or Learned Disorder?

Mr. RBR jokingly (sort of) calls my mom and me Sanford and Son. You know, the sitcom about a junk dealer and his grown son?

My mom and I looooove junk--when I say junk I don't mean garbage. I mean cool old stuff. And we love decorating too. You could say... it's genetic. Mr. RBR would say it's a genetic disorder.

In fact my mom owns a store--actually two stores--with her sister. The stores are connected. One store is an antique mall. People rent out booths and sell their finds.

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The other store--it's ALL my mom and aunt's finds.

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There are stores that have fabulous vignettes, where they lay out for the customer exactly how an item can be used. My mom's store isn't like that. You have to DIG for your prize. ha! Don't believe me? Here's some pictures. It's literally stacked to the ceiling with fun, funky, cool, old... stuff.

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Good thing this store is in a different city than I live in. I'd be in real trouble if I were closer. The antique mall side has cool stuff too. These two vignettes reminded me of some bloggers I follow.

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Red, cozy, a little crafty... Thrifty Decor Chick!

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Soft blues, metallics, a bust... Centsational Girl!

What do you think, am I nuts? ha!

Anyway, I do wonder if my mom and my love of all things decor is genetic. Afterall we look alike, sound alike, we enjoy doing many of the same things. We even dressed alike on accident this Thanksgiving. Seriously. Almost identical. EMBARRASSING.

The reason I wonder about this is because of MY family. You see, not all of my children are genetically related to me. And this Christmas one of my sons started holiday decorating with an enthusiasm that really touched my heart.

He made this wreath with his own hands, and then tried it in several locations before finally settling on the back door.

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And then he came up with the idea all on his own to hang a single ornament on EVERY SINGLE DOORKNOB in the house.

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And then he primped the tree just so. Going back again and again until the ornaments were just where he wanted them. Can you see his little heart bursting with pride over what he created?

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Yeah. It's not Clayton, my biological son. It's Zack. Zack was adopted. And from somewhere (his biological parents? me?) my son is starting to find the inspiration to decorate. And he is loving it.

I am too.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Built-in Before and After

The built-in unit in the Toy Room was pretty beat up. It was long over due for a face lift.

Before.
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We need more storage too, so the plan was to expand it across the entire wall, like this.

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Unfortunately the plans to expand are going to be phase II. But we were able to spruce up the cabinet and install the flat screen. This is what it looks like now.

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These doors are a story in themselves. They were so neglected, I decided to strip them. I don't think I'll be doing that again any time soon. It was my first time stripping and will probably be my last. Mr RBR had to rescue me and give them a good sanding, because I was SO SICK of picking at them, trying to get all the dang paint off.

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I have to say, the doors do look fantastic. It was a lot of work, but the results are amazing.

Here is the built-in mid process. We had to rip the top off to get new drywall on the ceiling.

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We ended up taking out some shelves to make way for the flat screen. Mr. RBR also lined the back of the cabinet with beadboard, which I painted green. I couldn't resist trying out the vingettes, although it was a little (ok, a lot) premature.

You can also find a number of my projects here on the shelves!

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The Christmas prints are here. The Penny Jar is here and the rattan charger was a thrift find I found on this shopping trip. The large R (for Room by Room of course, wink wink) is cardboard. I found it at Joann's. I actually sprayed it with chalk board paint (because I just happened to have some on hand), so I'm thinking about drawing a fun design on it. Eh, why not? I can always change it!

The rest of the shelves hold DVDs and a couple of baskets (bought years ago at Target) to hold the miscellaneous junk that just seems to accumulate spontaneously.

Before I sign off, one more before and after.

Before.
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After.
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Linking to some of these parties.

Visit thecsiproject.com

This project was featured on House of Grace and Blue Cricket Design.
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