Sunday, December 2, 2012

First Christmas Ornament

I've been to a ton of craft fairs this year looking for the perfect 1st Christmas ornament for Dax, unfortunately it seems the art of crafting is something we only "Pin" not actually do. There were several places where they would write on a mass produced ornament but I was looking for something truly special. After alot of hours on the internet looking for the perfect ornament I realized I wanted a combination of several ideas I had seen and no one was really making them. (The reality is I'm a little picky.) So I decided to take matters into my own hands.

The ornament had to meet the following critera...

1. Must be plastic

I have a small child about to crawl that thinks a christmas tree is the coolest thing since sliced bread.

2. Must be easy to customize.

I didn't want to have to buy special pens or other things to make this work.

3. Must be plastic....seriously

I have three dogs who think we put up our tree just so they can take ornaments off at night to play with.

4. Must be something I could have customized similarly year after year.

I wanted something that I could make duplicates of year after year with new things in them. Like a collection. (Told you I was picky...)

I really liked this ornament on Etsy but really couldn't justify the cost if my dogs or child decided to ruin it. I was glass too so it was sure to get broken at some point over the years... Also what if I couldn't get this again the next year from the same person or in the same size...

Not willing to compromise I started looking on the internet and found something I thought would fit my bill.
I found this site with plastic fill-able ornaments. They came in alot of different shapes and sizes but I decided on the 3 1/4" star. I ordered a dozen so I could make them for years to come.

The come in half and simply pop together making it easy to add items to the interior. You could put anything in here as long as it fits!

I then went to my computer and created the scrolls for the interior. I picked my font and color and printed them on my home printer. I used Dax's birth stats, the first Christmas date, his personality traits, our wishes for him and what we love about him.  I cut them into thin strips and rolled them around a pencil. I pulled the center of the scroll out from the bottom, this makes the little spirals inside.

I added a little bit of fine white glitter on the inside and then added just a tiny bit of hot glue around the seal where you put the ornament together to keep it from breaking apart unexpectedly. I used some of the left over ribbon from our wedding for the bow and hot glued it on.Finally I used a little more ribbon for the loop and simply tied it in a knot.

This is how it came out. Pretty cute I think and I can keep doing it for years! I really wish I could fill my tree with them right now but its nice to know I have something of a tradition started for our family Christmas  Every year when we put up our tree Dax and I will create one of these together.  Filling them with joy, wishes, and things that represent him.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Traveling Dog Food Bowl

I've been wanting to blog about this for a while not only because its from a great client of mine but because it really works and has probably saved our poor dog Lucy from starving to death while she is at work with Justin! Over the years we have tried a lot of different traveling dog food bowls. Most of them are made to fold up and be packed away which poses two problems. One, Justin packs them away and forgets to get them out and has to carry a bag of dog food or a jug of water with him to fill them up and two since they are made of the very same material most of Lucy's dog toys are made out of once they are empty she sees them as a pretty fun chew toy...Not so good. 

Last year out of the blue I was contacted by John McMurphy of K-9 Enterprises. He wanted his website redone for his Traveling Canteen, a virtually leak proof, spill proof, indestructible, traveling, take anywhere dog & pet water and food bowl. As we spoke on the phone I was all about rebuilding the website but had to laugh to myself about the above described bowl. I had read so many similar descriptions about traveling dog food bowls only to find they were directly to the contrary. I explored the existing site and for the first time I thought he just might be right...

The Traveling Canteen is a portable all-in-one dog food and water bowl. Not only can you bring enough food and water for a get-away, but your pet can eat and drink from it as well. The dog food bowl holds .5 gallon of food with a screw-in sealed lid, which means that dirt and dust won't blow into your dogs food.
The water portion holds up to 2.5 gallons of water with it's own screw-in leak proof lid. Open the water side and leave the lid on the food if it's not time for your dog to eat yet. Openings are 7" wide to accomodate even the largest of breeds which was great for our Great Dane Boe! The unique design allows the water to also flow around the food bowl, keeping it cool and fresh. 

So problem One solved the food and the water stay in the dog food bowl so Justin doesn't have to carry bag of dog food or jugs of water but would this really stand up to problem two?

Lucy is notorious for chewing up ANYTHING!! We can't keep enough chew toys on hand for her. John assured me this particular dog food bowl could be run over by a truck and not break... Yea right I thought so I asked him to put it to the test for the website. So we shot the following video...

I thought for sure thought the lids would be shot once we finished but lo and behold they screwed right back on! I bought one that day. Justin carries it in his truck and fills it up once a week for Lucy. She has tried to chew the handle to no avail and this thing has taken a serious beating going to work on construction sites. We also take it camping with us! 

You can read more about it and buy one online at! Trust me you'll never have to buy one again! The best part is they are Made in the USA and I am all about supporting small businesses!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Clorox Wipes Container holds Toilet Paper!

The dreaded day has finally come....its my first camping trip with a baby and I have to say I am completely terrified! So many things to figure out and since we haven't been since last summer I knew our camping tote was going to be a mess to say the least. I knew I was going to have to par down to accommodate all the new baby gear we would need to make it four days. We have one 45 Gal. tote that we haul the majority of our stuff in with smaller shoe boxes inside to keep things organized. The very first Shoe box I opened was a mess with toilet paper. Half used rolls, rolls covered in sand and dirt, and squished rolls. There had to be a better and smaller way to store these... The hunt was on!

Remember this guy from my last post that I actually gave up on. It looked strangely tempting. Would a roll of  t.p. fit in here? Well obviously or I wouldn't be writing this post right! So I pulled it out and took all the plastic bags and got a couple of the squished t.p. rolls out. At first I wanted to cut a long slit in the side to pull the t.p. through but quickly found while two rolls fit, it was so tight they would never actually roll. Then I remembered this post I saw about making your own baby wipes! I could take the cardboard out of the center and have it come through the top!

I started by removing the parts of the wipe container that were made to hold the wipes so you could get one at a time. It left me with what you can see at the left. I just used a pair of kitchen shears to do this. The plastic was fairly flexible so it was easy to trim out the parts.

Then I grabbed one of the squished rolls of toilet paper and worked the cardboard roll out of the center. This took me more time than expected and I found that the roll being squished actually helped matters! The tissue was also stuck to the cardboard roll so it came out like butter!. A tip here is to go slow and be gentle.

I gently squished the roll into the wipes container and repeated the process for the other roll. I do have to say I'm not sure this would work with the extra large rolls of toilet paper because they are so much bigger. We use the cheap stuff because it biodegrades quicker. I just put on the lid after this and admired my handy dandy work. Now the t.p. was squish protected, water resistant, and I wouldn't have half used rolls taking up all sorts of space! Our t.p.stash went from taking up a double shoe box to this small container!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Lazy Susan and Wipe Box Get New Life!

So life is getting a little hectic lately and I really haven't been able to accomplish any of the big Pinterest projects I would have liked to but I was able to get two little things done this week! 

Lazy Susan in the Refrigerator

I saw this post about something you had to buy but the reality is its just a lazy susan and I just happened to have one my sister gave me that I had yet to figure out a use for. The truth is every time I could have used it I forgot cause it was stuck in the back of a that would work great!!! My husband and I are condiment addicts. From the standard ketchup and mustard to the crazies hot sauces we've pretty much got everything so my condiments always overflow from here....

So in goes the lazy susan and corrals the rest of the stray condiments! Yea! I really liked that the lazy susan is clear so it doesn't take up much visual space and with no lip my hubby is more likely to put it back on there!

Wipe Box is Plastic Bag Storage

As a new mommy I have Wipes containers EVERYWHERE! I always feel bad about throwing them out but the reality is I only need one wipe container in the living room and one wipe container in the nursery. Of course turned to pinterest for an answer but didn't find anything that really fit my fancy...but I did see this post for my Clorox wipe bottle. I got everything ready and started rolling up the bags...but 20 mins later as I was still rolling bags I realized that this was probably a big fat waste of my time. Who was I kidding I would never ever do this again. As I got up from the living room floor I bumped the changing table and the answer literally hit me in the head! The empty wipes container! OF COURSE! I gathered up the empty one I had and simply stuffed all the bags into it. Now if only I could get back the 20 mins of my life I spent trying to roll up plastic bags just so... 
Its not all pretty yet but I'm sure I'll hit it with some plastic bond spray paint at some point. Maybe that will be my first update post! But for now it opened up the entire bottom self in my pantry...enough that I could now get my back up stock of formula and my new mixer courtesy of my Auntie Tina in there! YEA! 

YIKES...looking at this picture my cabinet could use a fresh coat of paint and maybe some pretty contact paper. And yes I couldn't just get rid of my Clorox wipes container... I just shoved the plastic bags in there like i did in the wipe container. Because the reality is time with my son is more important than rolling up plastic bags. 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Laundry Organization Rack

So yesterday I got to redo my laundry room so of course today when I wanted to use it I came into our master bedroom to find this.... UGH..

I really wanted to try this project and remembered my mom and dad had some of that shelving. We used it in our bedroom as kids because it allowed us to rearrange often without much hassle. But I sadly realized I couldn't do this either because my laundry basket collection looks like this... YIKES!!! At $7 a piece I couldn't afford to replace these either! 

Oh but saving grace! I did happen to have 6 empty totes hanging out in the basement! WOOHOO! These would work better anyway cause I only do laundry every two weeks so I have bigger loads! So I picked up the brackets from my mom's grabbed some clear note card protectors from Basically Business and gathered up the totes!

I started by making some cute little signs on my computer and putting them inside the note card protectors. 

Then I gathered supplies and started hanging brackets!

Use an automatic pencil to mark deep  set spaces!
Don't forget to use mollies! Don't want them to fall!

I hung my bins and added my little signs and finally had a pretty cute final project! Now if I can only get my husband to use it... Anyone have any tips for that???

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Laundry Organization In An Afternoon

BEFORE...gotta love wood paneling!
I got so lucky this week. I had a full day where not only did I not have to work , my little one was also hanging out with his Grandma April and Grandpa Ronnie! This could only mean one thing.... PINTEREST PROJECT! At first I was going to tackle the Capiz shell chandelier but after further contemplation I decided I had better do another 21 day challenge from A bowl full of lemons. I really want this house organized by the time Dax is walking. So I decided to tackle the laundry room challenge. I wanted to paint the area but with the little one around it had never seemed like a good idea even with low VOC paint so today was PERFECT. 

First I cleaned ou the space and got rid of all the stuff I wasn't using. Then I covered the washer and dryer (because reality is I'm not a professional painter...I'm a messy painter) and slapped up a coat of primer. While the primer dried I ran out to Dollar General and alco looking for cheap ways to hide the laundry if necessary and all the laundry supplies. When I got back I slapped on a good coat of paint!

After that I tackled the behind the washer and dryer shelf I found here. Two cheapo brackets and a piece of wood from the garage. Cut to length and install. Easy peasy. 

Then I got all crazy and creative... I found a unused picture frame in the basement and made a cute sign out of letters like I found on this post. 

Time to refill the space with all the things I don't think I can live without...ok and some pretty stuff you can see in the next picture.

When I was at dollar general I picked up a shower curtain set for like $8. Why not curtains and a curtain rod you ask?? I wanted to make sure I didn't cover up in any way the smoke detector! We have a fire place in that room and I didn't want to take any chances. I also got three baskets for $2.50 each on clearance.

TADA! I put our changes jars over the washer and added my reed diffuser and a cute candle holder I got from Party Lite! All done and pretty cute if I do say so myself! 

I like how the messy stuff is hidden on the left behind the curtain and the rest is in the little baskets! Another project bites the dust and all for around $20...

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Knife block when you don't have a Circut

I thought this was a great way to pass an hour or so while my little guy sleeps and I'm waiting on client feedback! I don't have the time to wait or a way to get a circut letter ... So here we go!

 I grabbed my supplies and sat down in front of the TV. I started by painting my base a grey that is similar to our couch.

I printed our last name letter on the computer, cut it out and colored the back side with white chalk. Then I taped it onto the front of the knife block.

Then I traced the letter and you get what you see at the right! Pretty neat! So I was off and painting by hand using a tiny little brush!

Here is the painting done!

The final product...

I have two knife blocks because we live in steak country and we do love a steak so I repeated the whole process for the other one. 

My new Knife Blocks!

I may decided to add a coat of acrylic high gloss poly but I kind of like how they look now!

Garden Baskets of Fun!

Can you tell I'm waiting on feedback from a client today??? I loved the idea of this post. What a creative alternative to those corner stuffed animal holders! So I hit the shed and grabbed two planters and went to work! Quick and easy! Loved how it went with my little guys western rustic room!

Under The Sink Revamp

So I've been doing "some" (because the reality is I can't get to one project a day, if I don't work I don't eat) of the 21day challenge from A bowl full of lemons and today it was under the kitchen sink day! I really liked this post I found on Pinterest about putting down sticky tiles and we just happened to have some left from another project we had done in an upstairs bedroom so I used that, and I loved this post using a tension rod to store spray bottles so I used a "version" of that. 

Step One: Clean out the cabinet!

I emptied out the cabinet and got rid of the stuff we wouldn't use and cleaned the bottom shelf really good. The trick to sticky tiles is to make sure the surface is really really clean! 

Step Two: Dry fit the tiles!

This is really important! You will probably need to cut the tiles to fit and you want your cuts to be as invisible as possible. 

As you can see I had about 1/2" over hang so I traced the line with a pencil so I'd know where to cut. This cut would become the back edge of my back tile to hide the cut. 

Step Three: Cut the tiles!

Simply use a utility knife to score the back edge of the tile then flip and fold to cut the decorative coating. 

Make your cuts around the pipes by marking out their general area with a pencil. I'd show you the step by step but your pipes won't be in the same place as mine so that would be a big fat waste of my time and yours! Just take your time and measure them out. 

Step Four: Peel and stick!

You get it right! Be careful to line your edges up because sticky tiles are REALLY STICKY! HEHE! You don't want to get one to far out of place cause getting them up may not be an option without some serious adhesive remover. 

TADA!!! The final result!

Not to shabby if I do say so myself!  Now on to the next part of the project the "tension" rod bottle hanger. 

I really liked the idea of a tension rod but when I got to thinking about it I realized the idea wouldn't quite work for me. My cabinet is pretty wide and we all know that tension rods aren't exactly known for their stability under weight. We all know that "HOLY CRAP" feeling when your shower one falls down and leaves you scared and naked in the corner of the shower! :) I liked the idea of a cheap curtain rod instead plus I could hang it in the dead space next to the garbage disposal. 

Step One: Find one of these!

For some reason I have a TON of these lying around and  extra hardware, enough to mount them on every window in a 20,000 square ft home! PERFECT.

Sadly it was to long for the spot I had envisioned so I just quick measured and took it apart and used a pair of tin snips to cut it to the length I needed. 

Step Two: Hang the rod!

Just like you would in a window. 

WooHoo! Now I could start filling my cabinet again! Now to all of you that may want to give me crap about all the "harsh cleaners" I have, you should know I've been finding Pinterest posts about making my own natural cleaners and have every intention of switching over. HOWEVER... we live on a budget and I am not going to waste the supplies I already have purchased. I proudly hung my spray bottles and tracked down some empty bins!

TADA!!! Pretty ain't it!