Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Teacher Appreciation Week - Day 2

Today we have Day 2 of Teacher Appreciation Week.
Candles are always a nice gift. I found this bright sunny
one at Home Goods. With summer comes bugs, so a 
citronella candle is a nice way to help keep them away
from your favorite teacher!


The fun little wooden "create your own sunshine" 
sign, I found at Michael's. I may or may not have 
hovered over the sweet lady stocking the shelves
when I saw exactly what she was unpacking!

My stamp collection is vast, so for this week, I've 
pulled everything from my shelves that has anything
to do with Thanks or Teachers. The mini card has
been stamped with two different stamps and 
my kids wrote a little note to their teacher inside.


If you missed Day 1, you can view it here...don't
forget to link up your Teacher Appreciation Gift
Ideas at the bottom of the post!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Teacher Appreciation Week - Day 1


If you follow me on Instagram & Twitter, then a little birdie
told you that I'd be doing a week of Teacher 
Appreciation Gift ideas starting today...I made the banner
above for my kids school. They are doing a Pirate Theme 
this week but I had already purchased my kids gifts before
I knew that...oops!

Today we have Day 1:


I love putting together themed gifts so always keep my 
eyes peeled for fun containers, or ideas. 

Since summer is right around the corner, what better
way to celebrate your favorite teacher than with a bit
of summer cheer?! 

I picked up the watering can from the Target $1-3 section
at the front of the store...the shredded paper I already had
on hand. A few packets of flower seeds (also from Target)
and I kept my eyes peeled for other items to fit into the 
watering can whenever I ran errands. A pair of gardening 
gloves from a grocery store, as well as a bottle of sunscreen.
The shovel I found at Tuesday Morning, they always have
fun items there...

I stamped the You're Amazing stamp onto white cardstock, 
cut it out and layered it onto a strip of designer paper. A
bit of washi tape adds a fun touch and won't leave sticky
residue on the can once it gets put to use.


Come back tomorrow to see another fun teacher
gift idea, and link up your teacher gift ideas below.


Saturday, May 2, 2015

DIY Wood Wall


When my parents were here, my very handy hubby and 
woodworking Daddy slapped together this wood plank wall
in our Master Bathroom.


Regular wood fence boards were picked up from Home Depot.
 The tops were cut off and the new router was put to work 
making rounded edges on each board. 
Next the staining...
I picked out two different stains but once they were
applied, they sort of looked the same, oops!


Just one coat of stain was applied to each board 
and then a bit of drying time...and banging up each
board just a bit with a hammer.

The guys hard at work

My hubby drew lines on the wall to mark out the studs.
He nailed the boards into place with the nail gun,
my Dad cut them all to our requested sizes and I was 
their runner up and down the stairs (my workout for
the day, whew!) 

We love it and I can't bear to hang anything on it yet
but we are dreaming of something 'Tahoe' style.
I have the paint picked out for the rest of the walls,
just waiting for the perfect day to paint!




Sunday, April 26, 2015

Publisher Plus Software Review


There's only one word to describe my reaction when I first opened Publisher Plus for Mac, MINDBLOWN!
With so many choices and simple changes for layouts, fonts and colors...the possibilities are endless. 
From Seasonal Sale Flyers for your Clothing Boutique, Church Bulletins, Neighborhood BBQ Posters, Fitness Magazines, Restaurant Menus, Holiday Party Invites, Baby Announcements, Graduation Invitations, Wedding CD Covers, Sports Awards, Business Cards, Designer Resumes for your College Graduate, Cover Letters that will set you apart from the rest...and so much more!

Endless possibilities and ease of use are two high priorities for this busy Mom. Take for instance
the following "Lost Dog" Poster. The top (blue) one is the Publisher Plus Layout and after just 5 minutes, the one below (green) is mine. Color changes, Font changes, taking the bottom section from 2 columns down to one, a few more edits and you have a beautiful eye catching poster, ready for printing.

Publisher Plus Layout
My Layout after 5 minutes

Yearly Birthday Parties are always fun to plan. If you don't have
time to hand make invitations this year or don't want to pay the hefty
price to have someone else do it for you. You can easily create your own
using this software.

 front

back

Add your own photos, colors and flair with ease...

Looking to upgrade your old business cards?
You can design your own to fit any genre. I love
having 'Mommy cards' on hand so I can easily pass
out my cell number to a new friend.

front

back

Bottom line, if you are looking for a creative and easy
program (that even your Mother can use) to wow your audience,
this one's for you!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Financial compensation was not received for this post. 
A sample product was gifted from Pearl Mountain Technology. 
Opinions expressed here are my own.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Window Privacy


If you are tired of feeling like the the world can peer into your home
at night or the mailman dropping off packages during the day. 
The neighborhood kids popping over to play with your littles, 
or just want to walk around in your bathrobe all day without 
feeling like a turd, then this privacy window film is for you!


 I picked up a tube of 'window film' from Home Depot
and with a spray bottle of water and soap, it was very
easy to apply. I'd measure your window out first and then
cut to fit. You'll want to leave a little room on the edges, so
the air and water can be squeegeed out from underneath and 
give you a little room to move it around a bit if you are a 
perfectionist. I tried to pick out the less gaudy print without
it being too blah. The one I used is called Etched Lace.


If you have high windows that can't be covered with 
curtains or that let in a bunch of sun or heat, 
you can buy tinted film as well. The lack of 
curtains that are bound to get dusty and the clean lines 
of simplicity appealed to me with this privacy film. 
I need to run out and buy more for our sunroom!


The opinions in this post are all my own,
this is NOT a sponsored post.

Monday, April 13, 2015

DIY Custom Closet

No more cribs and a mobile toddler means one thing
in our house...no more organization in their room, gah!
Our youngest has recently transitioned to a toddler bed,
because of her mad monkey climbing skills. With that
comes baskets and clothing that was once neatly tucked
into shelves and folded ever so nicely, now thrown into
a tornado mess all over the floor. Soooo....the next option,
pile it up, as far away from those curious fingers as possible!
That worked BUT then we couldn't get to her clothing and she
began wearing the same outfits over and over again, so
the closet renovation began.

When we first moved in, all the closet sliding doors came
off in the kids rooms, because really, getting to only half
of your closet at a time is kind of a pain and little fingers
inevitably get pinched as they bang them closed. Not to
mention, taking off the doors adds more space to a room.
In a baby room, it's a great place to put the changing
table since it won't always be in their room and frees
up playable space on the floor too.


I removed all of the furniture, baskets, clothes, etc.
and then the hubs took down the wire shelf and filled
all of the holes, sanding them down when they were dry.
Then the fun part, adding a splash of light grey to tie
the closet together with the rest of the room.
I used Sleek Gray C15 from Lowes, Valspar Paint.
One coat did the trick and I even painted the ceiling
of the closet as well.


Our yorkie Satine, was my painting buddy and wanted
to be in a few of the photos to prove she was my
super assistant for the day.


We wanted the closet to grow with our daughter 
and building your own is a great way to customize 
exactly what you are trying to accomplish.


So my handy hubs went with a box/cube method and
used his new router for a much faster build. He also 
stained the shelves outside with a spray painter and after
they were installed, I went back over and touched up spot
as well as stained the trim/facing.


This photo shows you the sides of the main boxes.
To the left, you have long dress hanging and to the 
right two rods for coats and warmer gear.


The closet is complete and now neatly organized
again. Thanks to my handy hubby for another 
complete masterpiece!


Just a few more basket needed but otherwise
everything fits and there's room to grow!


Friday, April 10, 2015

Washi Tape Outlet Cover

So with my new desk top outlet plug, comes a shiny 
white boring outlet cover. What better way to fancy
it up in a craft room than with Washi Tape!
Bring out the options...



and with no sticky residue, I can change it up
anytime my crafty heart desires, in a washi flash!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

DIY Plug it in, Plug it in

Ready to shed a little light on the subject?
That's right. DIY. Light. Plugs. 
and the lack of cords, yipee!


Not going to lie, I was a tad bit nervous when my
handy hubs said he wanted to drill a hole and cut 
into my awesome 5X5 table top work space but
I'm in love with the finished results and love that I'm
no longer tripping over an extension cord.


Before:
Beautiful, White, HUGE and normally covered with
paper and other crafty bits as I'm working on Etsy shop 
orders or crafting something for our family home.



We sketched out where we wanted the box to go 
and he even let me try the jigsaw for the first time.
I'm all over that tool this summer...oh the possibilities!



 Next the box and electrical stuff, glad he's done 
his research because I have no clue when it comes
to wires and such. Hot glue on the other hand, 
I'm a pro at that!


and the finished results...what do you think?

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Goodbye


March was a quiet month for me...busy but quiet, on the blog. Our fur baby Kowe, who has been with us 11 years passed away just before my Birthday. She was the sweetest 4 lbs of fur ever and her big personality is greatly missed in our home. We first adopted, Satine, while we lived in Germany and when we found out we were pregnant with our firstborn, we brought Kowe into our family as a companion for Satine. Both of our girls have seen us through 4 pregnancies, 5 moves, have traveled to Prague, France, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, North Dakota, Texas, Rhode Island, Virginia, Arizona, Iowa and many states in between. 

Kowe was a spitfire till the very end...A month before, she was diagnosed with renal failure. She loved playing with her stuffed toys and if you squeaked one, Kowe would run from wherever she was napping, bark her wee little bark and tilt her head to the side eager to play. Satine always ran to the toys first (her legs are a little longer) but would always let Kowe 'win' and bring them back to us. Walking with two Yorkies can be a bit tangly, especially when strollers, or small children are involved. So now just walking Satine, seems impossibly easy and wrong.

The tears have been spaced out more and more as the days since Kowe's passing continue on. She was just 'one of the kids' that loved unconditionally, snuggled anywhere, loved to sleep in, shook like a leaf during thunder storms, wasn't a fan of fireworks, loved to sunbathe, thought she was much bigger than her tiny frame, would sit by the door so she wouldn't be forgotten on car trips, loved bike rides and green peppers. She adored the new baby bundles we would bring home from the hospital and would always try to steal their toys. If a stroller was going on a walk, Kowe would hop underneath and would much rather ride than stroll, which is probably where she got her little round belly. She loved tummy rubs, greenies, warm weather and wasn't a fan of snow or the bitter cold.

I've had people say...
"are you going to get another dog?" or "that's why I won't get a dog"
but even though, the pain right now is tough, I wouldn't have it any other way. Tears are flowing as I type and I'll always miss my girl but she's not replaceable. Dogs, like kids, have their own personalities...and Kowe definitely had her own!

It's odd not saying "the girls", "Kowe", "Kooooooooweeeeeeeeeee", "Kowe Bug" or "Kowe Ann" when she was in trouble. The day before she left us, we knew it was time...I gave her a bath gently in the sink and had to hold up by cupping her sweet belly, which wasn't as round anymore, in my hand. She couldn't keep her food down and just wanted to sleep. I went to the craft store and picked up some cloud plaster to capture her tiny paw print, snipped a small locket of her fur and snuggled her by the fire, snapping photos and talking to her. The next morning I took her into the vet and she couldn't stand unless I held my hands on her sides. She'd lost 2 lbs. and now water was no longer on the menu either. The vet agreed that it was time and said I could come back anytime that day. I left their office with our two littles and tears streaming down my face as I carried my sweet Kowe home.


Looking back, I'm so very glad we got to spend that day with her. The kids all took photos holding Kowe and I even got her little head to tilt one last time for a photo when I squeaked one of her toys but she quickly laid it back down again when she remembered she didn't feel well. Broke my heart. I took her to the vet alone and it took a call to my hubby and lots of tears before I could get out of the car. I knew in my head, everything I was doing would be the last...the end...of her chapter. The last snuggle, last kiss, last look from her little round eyes, last touch of her sweet black button nose, last lick from her tiny pink tongue with a chunk missing from it. She nuzzled her tiny head on my chest and not long after we walked through the doors, two tiny heart beats and she was gone.

I still look for her in her beds and expect her tiny self to come prancing around the corner, ready to play but then remember...and the pain comes back or the smiles as I remember one of her little quirks. I try to think of her running in green grassy fields with a toy in her mouth, because that's where she was always happiest.

She was a lover of humans, stole our hearts and will always be in mine.
Love you forever Kowe Bug.

 bed head

snuggly puppy

 Satine and Kowe
helping Mama unpack her craft room...again

 Satine and Kowe
on the farm in Iowa



Wednesday, February 25, 2015

DIY Wrapping Station


Who else is a total sucker for the $1 a roll wrapping 
paper at Target? I am! A place to store my rolls without
all the bent ends which was easily accessible was on my
to-do list and this wall needed a bit of color...

Found this open frame at an antique shop, although it's
not antique, it was perfect and snatched up for a great
price. A box of cup hooks, some mini metal rods
and a finished usable piece that isn't too shabby
to look at when coming down the stairs to the basement.

We already had the bar, hooks and buckets, so hung
a few for washi tape, stickers, etc. I moved the markers 
and scissors onto a high shelf in a closet, since we
still have littles and that would just be a catastrophe
waiting to happen!

A few jars for ribbon scraps and bakers twine. 
The green locker, which will be getting a paint face 
lift hopefully this summer, holds tissue paper, 
small boxes, bubble wrap and other packaging items.


The metal rods have a small hole in each end and are 
easily removable when you need to change out the
rolls of paper. A small piece of washi tape is also
a great way to keep the paper from unrolling.