Design

Dylan’s Tween Bedroom

June 28, 2016

As I’m packing up all the rooms, I’m really thankful that I have pictures of every room in our house. It’s a fun benefit of blogging. My kids will always be able to look back at their childhood bedrooms.

rug and pillows

Dylan, my middle child, has been the most sentimental about leaving this house.  We moved into this house when I was pregnant with him. He a very smart, independent kid, who can spend hours and hours happily playing lego or drawing by himself. He loves his bedroom. Months and months ago I shared the plan to update his room to make it a little less little boyish and transition to a more teenager-like space.

tween boy room

I teamed up with my favorite kid company, The Land of Nod, to give his room a modern, clean, more grown up look. I chose bedding, a rug and a few storage pieces in neutral tones. While the room doesn’t have a whole bunch of color, there is not shortage of fun patterns to create interest and texture.

We started by giving the room a fresh coat of white paint. I’m still a fan of white paint. It the easiest way to make a space for bigger and brighter.

The furniture was rearranged a bit to change up the space. While I would have loved to get rid of the Lego table (formerly a train table), but he still loves to keep all his creations on it. So, we tucked it in a corner. I had plans to add a couple wall planters to the wall over the lego table, but when we found out that we might be moving, I decided to wait. But, the room could use a nice does of green with some plants.

tween boy roomtween boy room Shelf // Duvet // Pillow Sham // Throw Pillow // Planet Banner //Bookshelf

Storage Bin // Lamp //Rugtweeen boy room tween boy room tween boy roomtween boy room tween boy room

Thank you to The Land of Nod for providing products for this space. 

DIY

DIY Ironing Board Cover Pattern

June 22, 2016

When I started planning our Laundry Room renovation, I planned on getting new ironing board cover to go with the updated space. But, it turns out, cute ironing board covers are hard to come by. If you are ok with florals and generic, neutral colors choices then you can definitely buy one. But, I wanted something modern and fresh, so I decided I had to make one.

Sewing is probably my first crafting love, and I just don’t get out my sewing machine often enough. This is a really easy sewing project, and even if you haven’t used a sewing machine much at all before, this is a project you definitely can tackle.  In about an hour, you’ll have a fun new cover sewn for your ironing board.

Make this DIY ironing board cover in about an hour. Pattern and full how-to instructions provided for any size/shape ironing board.

You can find the full how-to here, on ehow.

Custom Ironing Board CoverFree ironing board cover pattern with easy to follow step-by-step instructions.

Style

Leather Backpack Purses

June 21, 2016

I’ve always been a fan of a cross body purse. I love having my hands free, maybe it’s a mom thing. I feel like I’m always have to hold a kid hand and carry lots of things. But, recently I’ve been eyeing backpack purses for even more hands-free freedom. Here’s a few great options in a lot of price points (from $30 to $200).

leather backpack purse

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8

And while I was in Canada last week, it was a birthday! My mom surprised me with a beautiful leather backpack purse from Roots (she didn’t even know I’d been looking at them). Plus, I’ve always wanted a Roots purse. I’m pretty sure every good Canadian should own something from Roots. This fun bag, can worn three ways – as a backpack, a cross body purse, or just as a regular should purse.

What do you think? Does practicality win over style for you too? Do these feel too 90s to you?  I do have to admit that I rocked a backpack purse in my youth.

DIY

DIY Outdoor Buffet

June 16, 2016

We’ve been eating most of our meals outdoors. I decided we needed a place to store all our outdoor dishes and also give us one more surface to serve from, so I made an outdoor buffet cabinet. This was a really fun DIY. I took a couple inexpensive metal cabinets from IKEA, made a custom tiled tray top for it and ta-da, we have a new Outdoor Buffet!

You can see all the step-by-step instructions for this fun project over on ehow today. If you haven’t tried tiling before, I highly recommend it. I had so much fun making this tray top, I’m ready to tile something else, SOON!

DIY Outdoor Buffet IKEA hackDIY outdoor buffetDIY outdoor buffetdiy outdoor buffetAnd I can’t tell you how many times I’ve made these yummy Grapefruit Jalapeno Lime Mocktail Margaritas.  It’s my new, go-to Summer drink! DIY outdoor buffet

DIY

Wicker Chair Makeover

June 15, 2016

I love finding a good deal on furniture, that’s why I thrift and garage sale. But, this might be my best deal to date!  You guys, I found this chair on the side of the road.  Can’t get much better then FREE!

Black Wicker Chair Makeover

It definitely needed a little love, but with a fresh coat of paint and a new cushion and sheepskin back, it’s looks pretty great.  And it’s the comfiest chair – it rocks and swivels.  You can check out the full makeover and how-to over on ehow today.

Have you ever found furniture on the curb?  What’s the best thing you’ve ever picked up?

Wicker Chair Makeover Black Wicker Chair Makeover and Sheep Skin Back

etc.

Keep Your Kiddos Busy with Summer Explorers

June 9, 2016

summer explorers

Summer is here and mom’s and dad’s everywhere are excited that they don’t have to pack lunches and drive kids to school. BUT…….. how do we keep them busy all Summer long and avoid cartoons, devices and video games. We really try to limit screen time, but it takes some creativity to keep kids busy. One thing I’ll be doing with Olivia this Summer is the Summer Explorers series.  My talented blog friend and also real life friend, MJ of Pars Caeli, has created 8 weeks of hands on learning and exploring activities for parents and kiddos aged 3-12. You can purchase just a week of activities or a whole Summer of fun.

Each week explores a different theme. With printables, experiments, activities, crafts and even book and movie suggestions to go with the theme, you a sure to keep those little minds active and entertained.  The first week is now available, and it’s only $8!!!! The theme is On the Hunt. This full week of activities include decoding, hunting, and uncovering hidden messages. Olivia and I looked at morse code (one of this first week’s activities) together and after a little explanation, she was kept busy creating a morse code necklace that spelled out her name.

summer explorersSummerExplorers_onthehuntsummer explorers summer explorers summer explorersBe sure to check out all 8 weeks of this fun program.  And enter for a chance to win a whole Summer Explorers package over on instagram.summer explorers

DIY

Bold + Bright Summer Floral Arrangement

June 6, 2016

Summer and flowers are meant to go together. If you are hosting a party or just want to add a little color to your dining room table, you don’t have to pay big bucks to have a florist arrange flowers for you. You can do this!!!! With some great foliage and flowers and the right tools, you can create a gorgeous arrangement.

black and white vase arrangement_fiskars 6_fiskars 7

I teamed up with my favorite local florist, Amanda of House of Flowers, to teach me some tips and tricks for creating a beautiful summer arrangement.  We used Fiskars Micro Tip Floral Snip and Floral Pruner to make easy work of cutting through thick woody stems and flowers.  Amanda said these cut like butter!

black and white vase floral arrangementI could watch this little GIF all day. There is something so satisfying to watch this all come together in just seconds. Summer Flower Arrangement

We started with a big, wide mouthed vase.  The graphic black and white (from West Elm), was a nice contrast to the wild, unruly arrangement.  Amanda started with a base of leafy stems from a mulberry bush that she foraged from her yard.  These thicker, woodier branches act as an anchor to hold all the other stems in place. Then there is no need to use a floral frog or oasis. These first branches also create the basic shape of the arrangement.

_flower 5

Next she added in lots of greens and whites in varying textures and sizes, many of which grow in folks yards here in California. Green viburnum, pieris japonica, white astilbe (my favorite thing about this arrangement), star of Bethlehem, and hellebores where all used. This filled in the arrangement.

_flower 12

Then she added in the more expensive flowers like the anemones.

_flower 14

And finally, to give the arrangement that wow factor, pops of hot pink ranunculus and spots of black scabiosa were added as a finishing touch.

_flower 19

I can’t wait to play with flowers again soon.

_fiskars 1_flower 28

This post is sponsored by Fiskars, thank you for supporting the companies that help make this blog possible. 

etc.

The Week’s End – Happy National Donut Day!

June 3, 2016

Well, we made it to another Friday. This one felt like it would never come. Today is the LAST DAY OF SCHOOL! End of the school year is so crazy. So many events to attend and everyone is just plain pooped. But, we are on the home stretch.

We are still super busy with selling and buying houses, well just selling one and buying one. It’s amazing how much paper work and stress is involved in the process. I’m sure happy this is only the second time we’ve bought a house ever.  Today we get to go over the home inspection of the house we are buying. I’m hopeful that there won’t be anything big to fix and I’m just excited to be in the house again. I drive by it multiple times per day, but it really is on my way to anywhere. My kids call me a creeper, because I slow way down so that I can get a good look at the place each time we pass. We are so excited!!!!

Now to celebrate this Friday, be sure to include a donut or a dozen in your day. It’s National Donut Day and I’ve found some fun donut recipes for you. If today wasn’t so crazy, I’d be making donuts for sure (probably these Chocolate Chipotle Cake Donuts). It’s a messy, but totally satisfying job. And also a guaranteed way to make friends.

Baked Matcha Green Tea DoughnutsMatcha Glazedblood-orange-donuts-4-2Blood Orange glazed_doughnuts_2Pretty PastelsRaspberry Ripple Doughnuts - Golden brown, sugar dusted and served slightly warm - filled with raspberry jam and sweetened cream. Irresistible!Raspberry RippleStriped-Donuts4-600x900Striped DonutsOreoDonuts-3-683x1024Oreo DonutsVanilla-Bean-Donuts-with-Blueberry-Glaze-15-600x902Blueberry GlazedKey Lime DonutKey Lime

Design

Green Sofas

June 1, 2016

Do you want to come do a little window shopping with me? I’m falling asleep every night dreaming about all the fun things I can do in our new home (fingers crossed). It’s a lot bigger then our little bungalow and actually has space for two living/seating areas. Soooooo, another sofa might be in my future. Our grey sofa is still pure perfect and I feel like it is neutral and timeless. But, with a second sofa, I’m temped to go a little trendy and add a whole bunch of color. How much fun would it be to own a green sofa?

You know, red heads have to be near green, we shine in the presence of green. I really think a green sofa could make my house and myself look pretty great. Tee Hee.

Here’s a few good examples of green sofas done right. This first one, by CB2 is probably my favorite. I love it’s tight, boxy shape and how can I resist shiny brass legs? Plus is a nice subtle green that feels more earthy and less ‘out of the crayon box’.

green sofa 1sourcegreen sofa 2sourcegreen sofa 3sourcegreen sofa 4sourcegreen sofa 5source

green sofa 6source

If you were to add a colored sofa to your home, what color would it be?  Navy, yellow, pink? Or do you play it safe with neutrals? Which is very smart, but maybe not as FUN!!!!!

And there’s still the option of a gorgeous camel colored leather sofa. Yes, very much a neutral, but such a sophisticated one.

DIY

Mini Grad Bouquets

May 31, 2016

DIY mini grad bouquets with printable "congrats" paper wrap

We are smack in the middle of Grad season. I love the idea of gifting fresh flowers to graduates, it feels special.  But, it can really get pricey.  So, I’ve made some adorable mini grad bouquets with printable “congrats” paper wraps.  I spent very little on these flowers and actually most of them were from my yard.  And I’m pretty sure any grad would be happy to receive these after receiving their diploma.

mini grad bouquet mini grad bouquets

You can download the free printable paper wraps in black and white. Simply cut out the two squares of paper and glue or tape them back to back.  Then tie up a mini bouquet of a few flowers and wrap them in the “congrats” paper.

grad bouquets DIY mini grad bouquets with printable paper wrap _grad bouquet 6

I hope you had a great long weekend.  I spent mine making and working on a whole bunch of projects. I’m really excited to share a whole bunch of fun new DIYs for you. So stay tuned.