Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Tragedy of a Dry Erase Calendar

Happy Leap Day!
It seems as though many places were having some good deals and promotions in honor of Leap Day.  I took advantage of Shutterfly's promotion - 101 free prints.  Also, I took advantage of a Groupon for Shutterfly - $10 for an 8x8 photobook, which saved me $20!

So, onto my post for the day.  Remember the dry erase board I made here?

Tonight, while making mac-n-cheese from scratch (my sister, Lindsay's, recipe - so yummy!), I had a fight with a bag of pasta shells.  And the pasta shells won.  My dry erase calendar and elbow lost.

Poor, poor thing - it didn't even last 2 weeks.  I'm going to see if I can get replacement glass for cheap at Home Depot.  If not, I'll just wait until I can make the 2 hour round-trip back to Ikea to replace it.  Another trip to Ikea?  Oh darn.  How will I ever survive it? my list already going.  :)

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Monday, February 27, 2012

Adventures in Gardening Part 3

I have posted before that I don't have much of a green thumb.  So, I'm always excited when I see my plants and flowers growing like crazy.  We've been having a really mild winter (except for today!).  The weather has been really nice and I think my plants are being fooled into blooming a bit early.  I did a little bit of yard work and took some pictures yesterday.

I have a pretty Salvia bush - the purple flowers are amazing.  It typically blooms in the fall.

You can see how full the bush is.  Well, it's been all dead and dried up for about a month.  I finally took the time yesterday to prune it back and this is what it looks like now. 
It looks waaaaay better than before I trimmed all the dead stuff off.  It was a hot mess, I tell ya!  I was just surprised out how much has grown in already!  I even saw a few purple flowers growing in already.

Last year, I planted hydrangeas.  See those pretty pink ones below?  I had dug up an ugly bottle brush tree and replaced it with the hydrangeas.  
I was very lazy and took forever to prune it after the flowers died.   Plus, I don't think I pruned it correctly.  I thought I killed it.  And then a few months ago, it looked like this.
Not too bad!  See those fresh green leaves that came in?  (just pretend you don't see those brown ones, umkay?)  But, do you see what I mean when I say I don't think I pruned them correctly?  I think I cut them too low.  Hmmmm...
This is what it looks like as of yesterday.
Poor thing.  It's really trying!  I don't think its going to make it though.  We'll see.

Last year, I also discovered I had green onions growing.  And in a very inconvenient spot - right next the concrete walkway.  Makes them very hard to get them out of the ground.  Last year I pulled them all and poured weed killer because I didn't want them growing in that area.  Well, afterwards, I found them growing in a different spot which was also next to the concrete walkway.  Yesterday, I found them making a reappearance.  I'm going to let them grow a bit more and pull them.  Onions anyone?

Now, these...I just love.  Calla lilies.
I had this house for almost two years before they started growing in!  I didn't even know they were there.  The above picture is what they looked like early last year.
And here is what they look like as of yesterday.

It's like a jungle!  They have grown like crazy.  I need to get under there and prune back the dead leaves, but when I looked yesterday, there wasn't much.  I was so happy to see some new flowers growing in.  Love these guys! (in the top picture, you can barely even see the hydrangeas on the upper right.  It's just a tiny blip in the picture. Oh, poor thing!).

As you can see in the above three pictures, it was sunny out yesterday while I was doing my yard work.  Because of the wind, there weren't any clouds - just blue skies.  But here is what we got tonight.

That's my front & back yards.  Mind you, I live in Southern California.  I get snow maybe a few times a year because my town is at a bit of a higher elevation.  But, it was pretty warm this past weekend.  We've been having crazy weather lately - one minute it's cold and the next it's hot.  Rain was in the forecast for today and this is what we got.  So cool!

I hope everyone had a great weekend and had fun watching the Oscars.  Have a good week!

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Sunday, February 26, 2012

Bird's Nest

I just wanted to share a quick little something today.  I found this in my front yard last weekend.

It had fallen out of one of the trees in my front yard - I'm thinking that the strong winds we get out here finally blew it down.  I cleaned it up since it had some bird doo on it - yuck!  This is the second year in a row that birds decided to nest at my house.  Apparently, animals and other wild creatures love to come visit me (I'll have to do a post on that one of these days). 

I decided to display it in a little cloche that I got at Ross awhile back.  What a great way to bring nature inside.

Hope you all have been enjoying your weekend!  Happy Sunday!

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Saturday, February 25, 2012

Let's Stay Connected

I should have posted this awhile ago, but some of you may have already heard that Google Friend Connect will be no longer be available for non-Blogger hosted blogs as of 03/01/12.
So, unless you are on Blogger, you will no longer be able to get updates from my blog through GFC.  I have seen that a lot of bloggers have added Linky Followers, but I haven't had a chance to look into it yet.

For now, please stay connected one of the following ways:

Since I heard about GFC going away, I have been using Google Reader (the top orange button) and I really like it a lot.  All of the blogs I follow are all in one place and it shows all of the newest posts by each.  There are different types of Readers, so feel free to follow me in your reader and you will get all of my current updates.

You can also receive updates via email or follow me on Pinterest.  Pinterest won't have my updated blog posts, but you can click over to my blog from my account - it's the little button with the world on it.  I do have a Twitter account, but I've only just started tweeting my blog posts.  Once I use it more for my blog, I will add a button to link to my Twitter account also.

For those that are regular readers, I just want to say a HUGE thank you!  It is very, very much appreciated.  I have found that the blogging community is a really wonderful place and I've met sooooo many wonderful ladies this way. 

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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Spray Paint - Sneak Peak

I know that aqua is a really big color right now in the decor world, but I've been loving it for the last couple of years.   It's actually been nice to have many more choices of aqua-colored decor these days!

Anyhoo, I went to Home Depot last weekend and bought these.
Yeah.  Have I got plans for these babies.  Stay tuned...

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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

File Cabinet (Re)Organization

I'm still on a bit of a re-organizing kick over here and this past weekend, I updated my file cabinet.  About a year ago, I purged the cabinet because it was starting to get kind of full in there.  About a month ago, I had bought some supplies for when I was ready to re-organize.  Below is a picture of some of the supplies I used:  file folders, file jackets (to hold the bulky stuff), tab labels, stapler, colored sharpies (to match the files of course!), paperclips, and tabs for the hanging files.  The only new supplies I bought were the file folders, file jackets, and tab labels (all from Walmart) - everything else I had.  I also re-used some of the file folders that I already had that were still in decent shape.

The way I had things filed previously were in pretty good order, but there were some things that weren't, so there were certain things I always had trouble filing away.

My file cabinet has 2 drawers - it's just a cheapo, heavy-duty plastic one, but I've had it for years and it's held up so well and seems to work for me.  It's located in my craft room in a previously unused corner - it's actually the perfect spot for it.  I decided that the bottom drawer would be for important papers (since it's the heavier drawer) and the top would be for other, misc items.

Here is how the 2 drawers looked before I re-organized.

Not too bad - most everything has a place, but you may be able to tell that some files have labels, some don't, some are typed, some are handwritten, some are scratched out.  Not too pretty.

I started by going through all of the files and grouping them into categories:  home, utilities, $$$, travel, crafts, and old archive information.  I used the plastic tabs for the hanging files to separate them.  Then, under each category, I made file folders for the different items and made sure to give each item their own folder (previously, I had some items sharing a folder which didn't work out too well).  There weren't enough of the different color file folders per category, so I just used up the colors as I went.  There was no rhyme or reason to how I used the colors.  I just made sure to group the same colors together - this gave the drawers a more uniform look.  When I made the tab labels for the file folders, I matched the pen color with the file folder color.  Nothing too fancy, but it looks nicer having them match.

And while I was at it, I purged some more paperwork.
That's a pretty good amount of papers that I got rid of.  I also got rid of some of the large envelopes that I was keeping stuff in - that made a big difference on how the files looked also (they fit into the hanging folders and file folders much better).

I will probably buy more file folders next time I go to Walmart just to give the top drawer a more unified look with the bottom drawer.  It's not perfect and not the prettiest, but it's much better than it used to be and I have a bit more room in there now.  Ahhh, another thing checked off of my long list!
Linked up to:
I Heart Organizing's Home Office Organization link party

Delightful Order's Paper Organization link party

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Monday, February 20, 2012

Dry Erase Calendar

Finally!  I have gotten a couple of projects done to share.  I had a really busy weekend.  And when I actually thought about it, my whole month has been super busy! 

Today, I'm sharing this cute dry erase calendar I made and it was super easy.  I originally saw the idea on a blog.  Unfortunately, I don't remember which one (it was before I discovered the magic of Pinterest), but I have since seen the general idea all over blogland and Pinterest.  I had no idea that dry erase marker wipes off of picture frame glass so easily!  Here is what I came up with.

Here are the items you will need:
* Picture frame of your choice
* Blank calendar page (if you are crafty, you can jazz up your own)
* Dry erase marker

I happened to have a few extra Ikea frames that I didn't use for my gallery wall and since I got my new refrigerator last month, I figured that my calendar needed to step up to the plate.  I generally use free wall calendars, so they are usually not the prettiest things.

1)  You'll first want to get a blank calendar page so you can fill out the dates and month name on your own.   I'm totally lame at making this kind of stuff on my own (I really need to figure out how to do that!), so I originally was going to print one off of my iCal and then white out all the dates and month name and then scan this as a new fresh copy , but I was lucky enough to download a free printable from a blog.  Unfortunately, I don't remember the name of the blog that had it.  :(  If anyone knows, please let me know so I can link to it. 

2)  I liked the matting in the frame, so I was going to just plop it behind the matting, but then it came out like this.

The matting really chopped it off at the top, bottom, and both sides.  So, I just put tape on the bottom of the paper and stuck it to the top of the matting.  (I'll still be able to reuse all of this if I ever decide to use the frame for something else).
Ahhh...this is much better.  As you can see, the printable has a "notes" section that I thought would come in handy.  I also like the color and design in the background.

3)  After I taped the calendar to the matting, I just put the frame all back together.  I also put together the photo hanger that came with the frame.

4)  I happened to have these great Command hooks (I just discovered this brand within the last 6 months and love that they come right off so easily!) and put one onto the fridge.  I knew that the Command hook would be perfect because I didn't want anything to permanently stick onto my brand-spankin-new fridge.

5)  Then, I just hung up the frame.

6)  And attached a dry erase marker with it's holder to the frame - I got them with another dry erase board I have. 

7)  And then filled it out.

I also kept the magnetic holder above it.  This is where I keep pens and notepads for whenever I need to make a list or write something down.   It can also keep dry erase markers when this one dries out.

I already found a couple of things that I would like to change.  The squares on the calendar are a bit too small - I'm thinking to somehow make a new one with bigger squares, but I really like the background color and design.  :(  Also, the dry erase marker was a cheapo one that came with another dry erase board that I have.  It doesn't write as finely as I'd like, making it kind of hard to read - especially since the boxes aren't so big, so I need to buy a new marker.  But other than that, I love the change.  And I love that I was able to get this completed using supplies I already owned. 

Thanks for looking!

Linked up to How To Nest For Less' Just a Party With My Peeps link party.
And to Homework's Inspiration Board Link Party.
And to The 36th Avenue's Show Me Extraordinary link party

And to Delightful Order's Thursday Link Party

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Sunday, February 19, 2012

Blog Networking

I hope everyone is having a great weekend.  I took Monday off since my nephew has the day off from school for the holiday.  We've already had a jam-packed weekend, but I have today "off" to get some things done and then tomorrow, we'll be off to the movies.

I've been getting some "non-blog" things done, so I don't have much to report here.  However, I did want to pass this on to anyone else who has a blog and wants to get it out there for all the world to see.  The 36th Avenue is having a Grow Your Blog link party for your blog.
It's not just a link party to a particular post on your blog - they want for you to link your homepage!  This is a great way for others to to hop onto to your blog to check it out and also a great way for you to find new great blogs, so I suggest you link up! 

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