Thursday, August 23, 2012

Dry Erase Calendar: Take 3

Yep - I decided to give my DIY dry erase calendar yet another revamp.  

 Calendar Take 1 was the first attempt.

Not too shabby.  I only had it for a week or two before tragedy struck.
It was for the better, though, because the first blank calendar page I used was vertical and the boxes were too small - there wasn't enough room to write anything in it.

I was able to finally make another,  Calendar Take 2, using a different blank calendar page.
This time it was horizontal, which meant the boxes were a bit bigger, but the days of the week went from Monday to Sunday instead of Sunday to Saturday.  At first I thought it was no biggie, but it ended up driving me crazy.  It completely threw me off!  I kept writing things in the wrong boxes/dates and almost had a couple of mishaps because of it.

The other day, I came across this post by SAS interiors.  I'm not quite sure how I found it (either via Pinterest or a link party), but thought this would work great for my dry erase calendar instead of what I had been using.  The boxes are still not quite big enough, but useable, and the days of the week went from Sunday to Saturday - perfect!  And it even had a separate "notes" printable, which was great because I noticed that since the boxes were sometimes too small, I would write to the side of the calendar.

So, I printed both the calendar and "notes" printable, gathered up some cute scrapbook paper, and grabbed some washi tape and my calendar quickly got a makeover.  This is what I came up with...

I love the little owls and how the washi tape acts as a simple, but decorative border.  It also incorporates aqua & teal, which are two colors that have shown up in just about every single room in my house.  And, it's much cuter than the last two I made, which were just plain and simple.  I think this will be the last revamp of this dry erase calendar for awhile since it seems like this will work much better for me.  And if I ever want to change out the owls and put something else in, it will take only a few minutes to do.  Gotta love those quick, yet effective projects!

Linked to:

House on the Way's Twirl & Take a Bow link party

The DIY Dreamers From Dream to Reality link party

The NY Melrose Family's Whimsy Wednesdays link party

Live Laugh Rowe's Live Laugh Linky link party

House of Hepworths Hookin Up With HOH link party

The 36th Avenue's link party

Thanks for stopping by!
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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Printables: Labels

This heat is really driving me nuts.  I can't get anything done.  I have lots of projects I want to do and just have no motivation because of the heat.  I actually started two projects awhile back, but haven't finished yet.  One of the projects is finally painting my french doors & new front door (they both came already primed white).  I am stalled right now because I need to figure out a couple of things before I can really get going at it.  I'll keep my thinking cap on, though.

The other project involves organizing all of my leftover paint.  I got stalled on this one too because I needed to go buy some cardstock, which I finally did this past weekend.  So, I finished making my labels for the paint cans and while I was at it, I made some labels for some plastic storage bins.

Centsational Girl wrote a great post on how she organized her paint.  I love those little paint cans she used to store them in and the labels are cute!  She got the labels from Brooklyn Limestone's post about how she organized her paint, so I promptly downloaded the labels and saved them for when I was ready to organize my paint.  The labels are saved as a .PDF file, so I was able to type in the brand, color name, date purchased, and rooms that I used the paint in all on these little cute labels - all the info I need in one place.

This next set of labels I got from the Better Homes & Garden website and I've used them for different projects (including in the garage and in the craft room).   They come in different sizes, shapes, and colors so they work for any type of needs.  These labels are going on plastic bins that will be stored in the guest room closet (oh boy - reorganizing the guest room closet is a whole other project itself!).

So, even though I didn't do any major projects, at least I got a few things done this weekend while trying to stay cool.  

Thanks for stopping by!
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Friday, August 17, 2012

Adventures in Gardening: Part 5

Succulents are supposed to be easy to take care of, right?  Somehow, I'm not good with plants and flowers.  Seems like the only ones that do well at my home are the ones that were already here.  I figured that succulents would be the best plants for me - plus I really like how they look.  I had planned in my head, that when I eventually revamp my backyard, I'll mostly have succulents or tropical type flowers back there.

Sometimes if I'm at Home Depot or Ikea, I'll pick up a succulent for the house.  As seen in this post, I managed to kill off a trio of succulents.  Oops - forgot - make that 4 of 'em.  Heh.  Last year when I was at Ikea, I found a really nice jade plant that I liked, so decided to try it.  Unfortunately, I don't have a "before" picture, but it was very nice and full and I loved the shade of green it was.  And it looked really good in the white Ikea plant pot that I had.

After almost a year, it decides to start dying on me.  Not sure why, but it just happened all of a sudden.  It even still had some baby leaves growing in.  But, this is what it looks like now.

So, so sad.  It's possible that I over-watered it, however I don't think I ever really gave it too much water - maybe it was just too much for this plant, though.  :(   I'm determined to make these succulents last!  I really want them in my landscaping in the backyard, but if I keep killing them, there's no point.  But, seriously - these are supposed to be the hardest plants to kill, yet I keep killing them.  Plant killer.  Ugh!

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

More Summer Fun: Ziplines!

I know a lot of you have kids that have already started back to school or will start this week, but for me, summer is still in gear.  The weather has been almost too unbearable (100+ for the last week or two) to be hanging out outside.  This past weekend was pretty bad because we had thunderstorms and a bit of rain, so it also brought the humidity.  Humidity = m.i.s.e.r.y!  But, I did do something pretty fun and was able to get out of this gross weather.

Hang loose!
I went ziplining with some friends in Big Bear and it was super fun!  I had never been ziplining before and will admit that I was a bit nervous.   I've always wanted to try it, but thought I would chicken out once I would have to step off the platform.  I was surprised that it didn't take much for me to just step off and let myself fly and after the first few ziplines, I got the hang of it.  From what we were told, this was "real" ziplining, in which we would be controlling our movements and braking with our own hands.  I am going to share a few more pictures and I know I might look like I'm not having fun, but I was just trying to concentrate on keeping myself straight so I wouldn't spin and also was paying attention for the hand signals of when to brake, etc from our guides (a couple of times I had a pretty fast landing!).   But, it was a lot of fun and I would do it again.
This picture shows me braking.  You put one of your hands on the cable behind you and grab on.  This causes the friction that slows you down.

Here's a birdseye view from one of the platforms
 On the way up the mountain, we got lots of rain - HUGE rain drops and were worried about the zipline tour being cancelled.  But when we got to the office, they said that the ziplines are at a higher elevation and had been sunny at the site all day.  But the rain and the higher elevation meant we were having much cooler weather than we had been used to down the hill, which was a nice relief.  And sure enough, at the ziplines, the weather was sunny with few scattered clouds and was really nice.  Perfect ziplining weather!  If you live in the area (I live in Southern California and the zipline tour is in Big Bear Lake) and are interested in this particular zipline tour, here is their website: Action Zipline Tours.  It's open year round.  At their office, they even had pictures of people ziplining after it had snowed.  I think it would be fun to go during the winter and do it with the snow in the background - the tour guides said that people even throw snowballs at the person who is zipping down the line!  How fun! 

I hope everyone has had a great summer or is still enjoying their summer and if not - go have some fun!

Thanks for stopping by!
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Monday, August 13, 2012

New Entry Door

One of the projects I was most excited about this year was having a new front door installed.  When my friend and her family came to stay with me for a week, her handy hubby was kind enough to install the new door for me.  How awesome is that?!?!  So, why was it so exciting for me? 

1)  The old door's paint was chipping and this exposed the metal door.  Because of the metal's exposure to the elements, it rusted in some spots.
2)  The old door was very dated.
3)  The seal at bottom of the door would often slide out.
4)  The door was also put on a tiny bit crooked so there was a little crack at the bottom corner that you could see light coming through.
5)  Because the door was put on crooked, it was a tad difficult to close and lock the door from the inside.  You had to do a "hip bump" move while locking it at the same time.
6)  The deadbolt didn't quite fit right - I couldn't unlock it with the key.

Pretty much since the very moment I bought the house, I decided to buy a new door.  I wasn't sure when this would happen, but I seized the opportunity of my friends' visit and decided to get it done now!  I wanted to order the new door online because it would be easiest to have it delivered to my home.  As much as I would have loved to have a door like this...
Via Home Depot
 ...I couldn't justify spending that much money on a door.  Plus, it doesn't really match the look of my home (although I wish my home's exterior would match this look!).  I also decided that I would like to have a door with windows so it would bring more light inside that part of the house,  but  I didn't want for it to be easy for people to see inside the windows.  So, I decided on this simple door...
Via Home Depot
...nothing too fancy, would match any type of exterior, and is a decent price.  The windows are high enough that you can't see what's going on inside the house from the street view, but I will still need to cover them some how because anyone can still peek through when at the door (I'm thinking of putting some kind of frosted window film on them as opposed to using curtains). I ordered the door just in the nick of time.  It got here just days before my friends showed up.  Whew!  I was really stressin' for a second, so I would suggest that if you have a deadline of when you need to order a door, order it at least a month ahead of time if not sooner!

Here are some shots of the original door.  You can see how the lighting is bad in the first picture - there is no source of natural light on this side, so it's always a bit darker.  You can also see in the second picture all the spots where the paint was coming off.  Ugh - and that ugly trim!

Here are some close-ups.  You can see the rust in the top picture.  Poor, poor, sad little door.

So, it was time to put in the new door.  Off came the trim.  I decided to also have the trim completely replaced because a friend's dog clawed & chewed up the bottom piece of it.  :(

And well, there always has to be some kind of issue with a home project, right?  Even though my new door was of "standard" size, it was still a bit too tall for my old door's frame.  Because my friends were from Utah and had to bring some tools with them, they didn't have the proper tool to make the frame bigger (since this issue was unexpected) and I didn't have it either, so off to Home Depot my friend's handy hubby went to go get it (sorry!).  Once he did that, he was able to install the new door with no problem.  And not to worry - a bit of foamy stuff filled in all the gaps.  Whew!

Here's the new trim I picked for the door.  My french doors that lead to the back yard already had a nice trim around them, so I tried to pick trim for the front door that was very close to it.  It's close enough that you can't really tell the difference.

And here is the new door installed and trimmed out!

I just need to figure out how I'm going to cover those windows for privacy and need to paint it.  For now, I'm just going to paint the inside part of the door a bright white and I'm not going to paint the outside part of the door until I have the exterior of the house painted (which won't be happening anytime soon - the house has hunter green trim, light brown trim, and the main part of the house is a tan color.  It needs a major update, but I need to get some other projects done first). But, I'm just in love with my new door!  It has resolved all the issues I had with the old door.

Thanks for looking!  I hope everyone has a great week and stay cool!
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Thrifty Decor Chick's September Before and After Party

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Scotts Snap Spreader

About two months or so ago, I had the great luck to win a Scotts Snap Spreader from a giveaway by Beckie at Infarrantly Creative.  If you've never heard of it, check it out here on their website.   I usually don't enter giveaways unless it's a product that I really need and I sure needed something like this.  I had actually thought about buying a spreader because my yard was in dire need, but thought I'd try the giveaway first.  What luck!

When I first looked at my house before buying it, the yard was pretty brown and you could tell that there were specific spots in the yard that looked like they were problem spots.  The yard was seeded before I got the keys and it came back pretty nicely, but you could still tell where the problem spots were if the grass didn't get watered enough.  Anyways, long story short, there were issues with the timer and valves and my water didn't get watered for a few weeks before it was fixed.  It was looking pretty bad.  Here's a picture of the front yard...

And back yard...

My poor lawns.  I adjusted the timer and the valve was fixed, so I decided to put my brand new Scotts Snap Spreader to use.  It came with a bag of fertilizer, so that's what I used.  One bag was just enough for both my front and back yards (I probably could have used a bit more, but it worked out fine).   It was super easy to use too!  All you do is "snap" the bag in, lock it in place, and just start pushing the spreader where you want to use it and the stuff just comes right out!  There's no mess!  And if you don't need to use the whole bag, you just take it out of the spreader and the bag self seals.  Pretty awesome.  My new spreader even has it's own place on the garage wall.  :)

After just a couple of weeks, my yards were looking better.
 BEFORE (back yard)


BEFORE (front yard)

I know it's really hard to tell from the pictures above, but I can see the difference in person.  Most of the backyard was brown and now there's a lot more green.  And I can see within the brown patches that some of the green grass came back.  From what I understand, a good time to seed your lawn is in the early fall, so I'll be seeding these dead spots in another month to try to bring them back and my new Scotts Snap Spreader will make this job waaaay easier for me.
***Note:  This post was not sponsored by Scotts Snap Spreader.  This is just my own personal review of the product.

Thanks for stopping by!
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Monday, August 6, 2012

Guest Room Makeover

I hadn't really planned to revamp my guest room - only make slight changes for my guests' visit - but with the mold I found in the carpet and having to empty out the entire room,  I figured that I may as well make the changes that I had in my little head while I was at it (I really, really wanted to scrape the popcorn off the ceiling since the room had been emptied out, but there wasn't enough time).  This is what my house looked like after I emptied out the guest room.
Dining room & living room
Craft room
Master bedroom
Pretty much the whole house had stuff everywhere.  It was driving me crazy.   After the carpet was taken out and I had cleaned the cement floors really well, I was able to start moving stuff back in. 

Because of the issue with the flooring, I decided to leave it "as-is".  I still need to have the floor checked out, so I needed a temporary solution to the floor that wasn't too costly (plus, although I want to redo the flooring in the entire house, I'm not quite ready to do that).  I wanted to have an area rug in there so it would make the cement floor a bit more comfortable for my guests, but I know they can be a bit expensive.  I decided to take a trip to Ikea to see if they had anything reasonable.  I found these 5 x 7 rugs for only $19.99 each, so I snagged 2 of them!  I laid them both down on the floor and adjusted them until I got them exactly where I wanted them. 

And here is the room all put together.

The closet got a makeover about 1 1/2 years ago.  The closet doors weren't put in correctly - the actual opening of the closet was not perfectly symmetrical, so the doors needed to be adjusted, but never were.  Fortunately, my friend's hubby fixed them for me while they were visiting and it closes just fine now!  Yay!

In the picture below, you can see that I flipped the Ikea Expedit shelf on it's side so it sits horizonally.  This is the spot where my Pier 1 armoire used to be (as seen in the 2nd picture which was taken in a different room).  It blocked much of the natural light coming from that window on the left.  It's so much better this way now.  And if I end up getting a TV for this room, it can go right on top of this shelf and be at eye level from the bed.

Here is another Ikea rug I bought.  I accidentally mis-read the dimensions of the rug and it's about an inch or two too short for the Ikea shelf.  But, it doesn't look so bad and it's just temporary - I needed something to protect the bottom of the shelf unit from the cement.  Once I get new flooring, I can always take this rug out and use it somewhere else if I want.

And because everyone loves before and after pictures...









I still have adjustments to make in this room.  I'd like to get 1 or 2 side tables for the bed, put a picture above the Ikea shelf (however, I may get a flat screen TV to put on top of the shelf instead), and most likely change the other pictures hanging on the wall, reorganize everything inside the closet, add some trim around the closet, and of course new flooring will need to be put in.  But, it's much better than how it was before.   I'm very, very happy with how it turned out considering it was all pulled together very quickly and without much planning.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great week!

Linked up to:

Tater Tots & Jello Weekend Wrap Up link party

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