Archive for November 2012

Cranky Pants

Saturday, November 17, 2012

I'm telling you right now that this post is going to have too much information. Like that it's that time of month. And it is making me Crabby with a capitol C. For one thing, I'm too old for this crap. And for another, everything smells bad to me. No, I don't know why. And I wish I hadn't said "crap," but I really can't think of a nicer more lady like word for it.

You should just leave, it's only going to get worse.

Earlier this week Marc won the mulch lottery when he spotted a tree trimming company working in one of our neighbors yards. They had chipped the wood and had a whole truck full of mulch that he sweet talked them into dropping off by our trampoline.

Marc's winning score!
Then it rained most of the week.

Then this morning it was still raining but Marc insisted that he and Jonathan move mulch down into what can only very loosely be termed "garden beds" by our driveway. 

And it's just annoying me. Because the mulch is not nice like mulch you buy, it has tons of evergreen needles in it. And also, I think Riley pooped in those beds because as Marc was raking mulch around it Seriously (with a capitol s) smelled like pooh. Which, gross.

But Marc just kept shoveling up wheel barrels full of faux mulch and then raking it around in the the rain...with the pooh smell. And I KNOW it's ridiculous for me to be upset about this, but I am anyway. 

Frankly, I feel irritated by just about everything right now. 

Wallpapered Stair Risers

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Post edit...if you are here looking for a how to on wallpapering stair risers, I finally did mine and you can read how here! It turned out be-you-ti-full :-)

For my next trick, I mean project, I'm hoping to really update our entryway. I've been messing with it forever, but now that we've bought the Ranch I'm willing to put in some real elbow grease (money, as always, is questionable).

The space is pretty small, but since it's the first thing you see when you come into our home I'm hoping to give it a little more pizzazz.   

Here's how the stairs look now.

One of the things I'd love to try is painting the risers, or maybe using wallpaper on them.
I started out looking at chevron patterns, like this:
And then I saw this:
It turns out this is actually wallpaper. Beautiful, no? I plan to paint the walls a moody grey which makes me like this picture, also done with wallpaper:
But I want walls that are a darker grey, and a pattern that is a softer yellow. What do you think of these two wallpapers that I found on the Home Depot website?

I kind of love them both, but the floral costs $45 a roll and the geometric print is $86 so there's that. I think the geometric is more on trend with decorating right now, but the floral might fit in well with our this old house vibe?

Anyone done any wallpaper projects, by the way? Paint and me are best friends, but the only thing I've done with wallpaper is take it down. I actually have no idea how hard this plan might be.

Not Too Old for Children's Books

Monday, November 12, 2012

On Thursday my book group is meeting and I'm super excited because we are discussing children's books. Instead of reading one book though, we each get to share a passage from a favorite children's book and then our fearless leader, Miriam, will put together a list of all of them for us to add to our reading list.

Good Grief, how to pick just one?!

I've written before about my love of the not-for-adults and here. I think that my parents raised me first and books raised me a close second. I wanted to be brave and good like Sarah Crewe, and I desperately wanted to be worthy to visit Narnia. And the magic that saved Mary Lennox in The Secret Garden, man alive, I believe in that kind of magic!

The Secret Garden
So tell me, what are some of your favorites? The children's classics? Fantasy? Newer titles like The Hunger Games? ALL OF THE ABOVE!

This is the time to leave a comment people! It can be your good deed for the day. Share your wealth of experience so we can all get cracking on your recommendation. 

Mmmmm-mmmm, I love recommendations.

Chalk Board Art Goodness

Thursday, November 8, 2012

I've been wanting to write a quote on my chalkboard door, something better than dinner menus, for awhile.

When I heard President Uchtdorf's talk from the LDS General Conference he said something that really grooved with me and I knew it was going up on the chalkboard. Here is the link if you'd like to read the whole talk.

But first, I had to figure out how I was going to write it so that it looked like something akin to chalk art and not my usual I'm-a-lefty-chicken-scratch. I started thinking about the scrapbooks I used to make back in the day; I was serious about my graphic lettering back then!

So I got them out to review and took some photos so you could see just HOW serious:

I know! How did I have time for that kind of family recording? Poor Ellie, she has no scrapbook goodness, all her photo memories are digital. Let's stick in a picture of her to make up for it.

Poor, cute, underrepresented fourth child.

Where was I? Oh yah, cool lettering. So I decided to put my old scrapping skills to work and here is what I came up with.
It says, "One sees clearly only with the heart. Anything essential is invisible to the eyes." Here is a close up.
Even after a bunch of erasing I'm still not entirely happy with the way this turned out, but it still makes me smile every time I walk by.

A few tips from my experience? Sure. First, draw a border; it frames things nicely. Second, dip your chalk in water as you're working, it dries a brighter white than if you didn't. And third, you can center each line by counting how many letters and spaces there are in the line and then dividing by two and putting the letter in the middle, well, in the middle.

For example, the line "is invisible to" has 13 letters and 2 spaces for a total of 15. So the 7th or 8th letter will be roughly the center of the line. Begin by writing the "s" in the middle of your line, and then work out from both side. Did that make sense? I'm not sure I'm explaining clearly but I'm going to assume you are a smart person who is good at understanding.

And I know you are :0) 

Jonathan Goes Gangnam

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Jonathan turned 14 at the end of last month. Le sigh. My sweet angel boy has gone from this

Christmas 2003
To this
He is still a sweetheart, but he's taller than me and that really bugs.

So...VIDEO! Perhaps only family will enjoy this, but here are Jonathan and his buddies dancing gangnam style at his birthday party (cheetos, mountain dew, halo, tag outside in the dark).
Happy Birthday son. I sure love you! 

p.s. a boy teenage birthday sure is different from a girl teenage birthday part.

Creating a Gallery Wall

Monday, November 5, 2012

You've been wondering about my family room right? Remember when I carefully diagrammed my plans here? And how I fixed my bookshelves here?

Well, here's the gallery wall finally finished. 

I had planned to put it between the two windows, but later I realized that one of my favorite features in a gallery wall is when the pictures go from the ceiling all the way to the floor, and that the couch was in the way of that between the windows.

I had six new white frames that I bought at Ikea a few month ago, and then I painted six more frames that have been around for years. I used the leftover ASCP from the piano paint project. Then I added in some pale pink frames that I've had since Maddie and Katie were little girls.
Instead of following any of the effort intense tutorials from the internet for hanging a gallery wall I just played with my frames on the floor under the wall where I wanted to hang them. When they looked how I liked I pulled in my step stool and started nailing. 

There actually are some benefits to being so far from a perfectionist. 
 Ewwww, you can see my kitchen floor there. See why I'm so desperate to pull it up? Anyhow, this was just my first configuration. I did loosely measure (with a piece of string) how high my wall is and then marked it on my floor with a sock.

After all my frames were hung I started looking for things to put in them. I used several black and white drawings from The Graphics Fairy. In fact, I used so many of her images that I think a happy linky button is in order:
The Graphics Fairy
Hers is a truly lovely blog.

Here is a close up of the a beehive graphic that I chose because we recently set up two beehives up on our hill.
I also pilfered a few photos from a book I have on Degas. Pretty ballerinas.

It took me a couple of days to fill all the frames (actually one is still empty) and I imagine I'll change things out fairly often. My last step was to use earthquake putty to secure the backs of the frames to the wall so they would stay straight. I figured straightening 21 cattywampus frames each day might put me over the edge.

So here is the room from a little further back.
 Remember the before?
And speaking of progress here is the evolution of Marc's Oakland Temple painting:
That was a few weeks ago. Here it is now:
And it still isn't done! Marc is such a Renaissance man. 

Okay, so back to me...the final things I hoped to do in the family room are 1. make curtains 2. make throw pillow covers and 3. make a slipcover for the ottoman. Since Christmas is two months away I think my funding for fabric will be diverted to holiday revelry, but I'm still super happy with what I've accomplished!

I'd love to see links to your room makeovers in the comments.


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