Saturday, November 27, 2010

New use for an empty can

OK, so I've decided to get crafty with you all. Please bare with me as I try and explain this craft idea.

I'm always looking for creative ways to wrap gifts. I get so tired of gift bags and boxes, so when I saw this idea on, I decided I'd give it try.

Here is what you will need to get started

An empty soup can with a "pull tab" top. ...

(I used a large pinto bean can) Now this is REALLY IMPORTANT***Make sure you open the "wrong" end of the can. Don't open the can from the top, you will want to open the can at the bottom. This project will only work if you have a can opener that leaves a lip on the can. I used my Pampered Chef can opener.

Next, you will want to pick out your decorative paper and cut it to fit around the can. Then use your favorite adhesive to secure the paper to the can.

Then you will want to cut a circle of coordinating paper to fit on the top of the can. I cut a slit in the paper to fit around the pull tab part of the can

Slip the paper up under the tab and secure with same adhesive.

Once you have the top done, then you can decorate the rest of the can however you would like.

Its time to put whatever you want to wrap inside.

I give my kids a Christmas ornament each year,

I thought it would be fun for them to have to "open" the can in order to get the gift inside. This will be the perfect size to wrap it in.

Once you have finished decorating the can, you will need to glue the bottom back onto the can. You will need to use a liquid glue like this one.

It doesn't have to be this brand, but needs to be a clear, strong glue. After it has dried, your ready to go! Hope you have fun making one of these and remember to just have fun with it.

Happy crafting


Thursday, November 25, 2010

Doing it all and then some

Where oh where have I been? Going slightly bonkers that's where. I've been crying in my cherrios and toaster waffles, but I'm back....

I may regret this post later, but what do I have to lose?

I’ve been thinking lately about us gals, and how we seem to constantly be faced with the duty? responsibility? charge? opportunity? of doing it all.

I’m not complaining here, and I only tell you this because I think many of you can relate, but from my own experience and from chatting with friends, it seems like we ladies are responsible for quite a bit: Working outside the home; Working inside the home; Paying bills; Creating budgets; Meal planning (which must be healthy, kid friendly, and budget friendly, right?); Grocery shopping (ugh); Cooking (double ugh); Cleaning/Organizing the house (triple ugh, ugh, ugh); Cleaning vomit (kid…dog…whatever…it falls on us); Home repairs?; Cleaning the car; Looking pretty (within said budget); Being phenomenal wives, friends, mothers, daughters; And, of course, having a beautifully decorated home that’s blog worthy/guest worthy at any moment.

And does anyone else out there feel an enormous amount of guilt if they don’t accomplish all of these things to perfection? And does anyone else feel insanely overwhelmed and like they’re falling short all the time?

I feel strongly that I need to start talking about a few other things: The struggles and obligations we face as women (no offense to men and their own struggles); Healthy living,Fashion, and DECORATING!!!…which will of course continue my heavy emphasis on creating a beautiful home on a budget. And do-it-yourself-because-you-are-WOMAN! projects.

I have to write from my heart. I have to write from my experiences and passion…and hope that those things help, inspire and resonate with some of you out there.

Wow...I'm tired and overwhelmed again, better go sit down with some Oprah and bonbons

With love,


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Why I do this crazy stuff

I just recently had a yard sale and was so excited to feature some of my Urban Barnyard pieces that I just finished. I set up a section of the sale for the "Boutique". I wanted a section that I could feature some of my pieces, but I needed to get more than yard sale prices for them. So, I figured if I called it a "Boutique" then people wouldn't freak out when they saw that a dresser wasn't marked $5. I had some of my friends put stuff in the yard sale too and it was so much fun! We laughed and ate ridiculous amounts of junk food (with the exception of the veggie tray...that's a whole different story) What a great way to get rid of our junk and make some extra money too!

Why do I do this crazy stuff? I'm not sure if you asked me this question a few days ago, I would have an answer for you, but today I realized I do it because it makes me smile! I love finding old pieces and giving them a new chance at life. Take this old desk for example...
I found it at Good will for $19.99 and I was immediately drawn to the fact that it was a roll top desk, and that it was smaller than the monsters you usually see. I had to have it! After several hours of sanding, painting, sealing and adding some really pretty glass knobs here she is all finished! Isn't it beautiful?

On that same trip to Goodwill, I also found this old birdcage.

It was a little bit more expensive...$29.99, but once again I had to have it. I have seen birdcages like this retail in the $300-$400 range. Do I need a huge birdcage? NO, not really. I don't even like birds, but I love birdcages. This one was in pretty rough shape, so I cleaned it, painted it (several colors) and finally settled on this crazy, wild Aqua color! I LOVE IT!!!
I had so many people at the sale ask me how much it was, and I kept going up in price because I didn't really want to sell it! So now, it is sitting in my living room where it really doesn't match ANYTHING in my house, but I've decided that doesn't really matter. Who wouldn't want a HUGE aqua birdcage RIGHT???

I was also able to finish another french style dresser that I have had in my garage for 6 months.
I love the way this blue color looks,(oops paint $5 a can from Home Depot) I kept the original hardware on it, it really added to the vintage look I was going for.

I was able to sell all these pieces (not the birdcage) and several other pieces that day. And although I was running around like a crazy lady trying to get all these pieces finished before the sale, it was totally worth it when I saw the look on people's faces when they got to take them home.

I'm taking a break now...well until I get up enough energy to finish the numerous pieces still in my garage, but I never stop looking for those perfect pieces that need me to rescue them and give them a new chance at life. Thanks for stopping by.


Saturday, September 11, 2010

Jackson's Radio Flyer Birthday

It's not everyday that your LAST baby turns one. Did you notice how I put the emphasis on LAST??? Yep, he is going to be our last baby and although that has a sad, final sound to it, it also makes me so happy because it gives a really good reason to make every birthday the best it can be. It is no secret that I love to plan, decorate and pretty much go over the top for all my kids birthdays. It makes Scott go bonkers, but in my mind this is how I justify is the one day a year that it is all about them. No one can take their special day away and if I can do a little something to make them feel extra special, well...them I'm gonna do it.

Case in point. I have been planning Jackson's 1st birthday since he was 6 mo old. I know, crazy many of you may think, but this is how my mind works. I have to come up with a theme in order to start looking for all of my treasures. And a little side note, if you plan ahead, it gives you lots and lots of time to hit all the thrift stores to find even more treasures for a better deal.

Jackson's 1st Birthday theme was Radio Flyer. I fell in love with this theme for several reasons. One, do you remember the Radio Flyer wagon I got at the church yard sale for $3, the one that I fixed up??

Well, I also found this most precious Radio Flyer pair of overalls at "Once upon a Child" in Gilbert for $6...had to have them, ooh I feel a theme coming on. Once I decided that I was going to go with a Radio Flyer theme, I put the word out and my friends and family started looking for things that were Radio Flyer. Amazing how much stuff is actually out there. OK, OK on with all the fun cute little details..

I started with his birthday pictures. I always include a picture in the invites that I send out. I make it so that whoever is receiving the invite can take the picture out and have it to keep. Jackson takes really great pictures, so this part was easy. I dressed him in his over-alls and we just went out into the back yard. I took his wagon with us and it served as the perfect prop.

This theme was perfect for a red & white checkered table cloth and sunflowers for the food table. I found this really cute little wooden wagon at the thrift store, so it became the perfect place to display the cookie favors for everyone to take home when they left. I also had collected several of these little wagons from the thrift stores. They made perfect centerpieces for all of the guest tables.

The rest of the party was pretty straight forward, I just let you glance at some of the pictures. The weather was great, the company was wonderful and we couldn't have asked for a better night to celebrate our "last" baby turning one. We are so very blessed to have such a loving family and great friends.

Sorry about the layout of all the pictures, I'm still trying to learn how this blog thing works.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Dont know what to call this thing....

Recently my step mom and I were walking through Goodwill trying to find a piece if furniture that she could use in her "new" craft room. We stumbled upon this piece.

She said, "Oh this would be perfect if only it was a little bit higher." I looked it over and was immediately taken by all of the drawers this thing had in it. What in the world was this thing? It was too short to be a was too long to be a night stand. It certainly wasn't a coffee table...."Hmmm, oh well" I said and walked away.

Later that night I was laying in bed and couldn't stop thinking about that piece of furniture. "What is it? That's it...I'm going in the morning and buying it. I don't care what it is, I want it." And that is exactly what I did. I had the guys load it up in my Suburban and off I went...home with my "unknown" treasure.

This thing sat in my garage for months and months. And finally this last weekend I decided it was time to tackle it.

After several coats of paint and sealer, It is finished. I swear I was going to be painting drawers forever. This thing has 13 different drawers and of course I didn't label them as I was taking them out, so it took me forever to get them all back in their proper spot. Or what I thought was their correct spot. It wasn't until drawer 12 that I discovered that someone else had labeled the bottom of each drawer. (Enter a HUGE sighhh here!!)So, I had to take them all out again and put them into their "real" correct spot. Aahh...they fit so well now!

Anyway, I fell in love with this piece the minute I finished it. I decided to paint it a "Barn Red" color...I have several accents of red in my family room, and this is just where I moved this "thing"

I would love to figure out what this thing is, so if anyone knows, please tell me. Thanks for stopping by,


P.s. Yes, Krista I know you wanted this...and I may be able to part with it after I have loved on it a few more weeks. I'll let you know. :-)

Monday, August 23, 2010

Racing to Goodwill

I have been working like a crazy woman trying to get some of my projects finished. I desperately need to make more space for new treasures just waiting out there for me to discover them.

One of the projects that I just finished is a "french" inspired dresser. I have seen tons of these type of dressers all over the place lately. Magazines, blog land, TV, I had to HAVE one (and two others) when I found them at Goodwill's 1/2 day.

I am terribly embarrassed to admit that I actually raced to Goodwill to get in line before 9:00am. You'd be surprised how CRAZY that place gets on 1/2 off day. I even took my son with me so that he could run into the store and lay claim to the dressers before anyone else could (literally..lay on them if needed)

I know, I know it's sad...but a girls got to do, what a girls got to do!! But I was glad to see some friends of mine doing the same thing. Luckily we were not going for the same thing or else there could have been blood shed. She had her husband with her to do the "dirty work" for her....

We both got what we went there for and left with all of our hair and nails intact!

OK, back to the dressers...I bought three of them that day. But, so far I have only finished one. I started out by wiping down and sanding it. Then I looked through my stash of "Oops" paint. If you are not familiar with "Oops" paint, it is paint that has either been mixed wrong or returned and they mark it down. I ALWAYS check the Oops paint section of any store, before I pick out "real" paint. It is super duper cheap. $5.00 for a gallon and usually $10 for a 5 gallon bucket. I have painted almost my entire house with Oops paint. Maybe that is a good idea for a future post. Hmmm...I'll have to remember that one. Anyway, I picked out this great blue color and got to work on painting....

After the paint was dry, I glazed it. I love this technique! Then got out the sander...well you know the rest.

Here it is all finished. It is missing one drawer hardware and I need to go to the salvage yard and pick one up, I'll add that to my To-Do list...I have moved it into the house for right now, and it may stay or it may go onto Craig's List or maybe I'll sell it at my Garage/Boutique Sale who knows, but for right now I am enjoying seeing it in my entry way!

Thanks for stopping by,


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

When trash really is just TRASH

In this current economy, too often we are seeing families having to leave their homes. This recently happened to a family who lived around the corner from me. Due to some unfortunate circumstances, they had to move out almost as quickly as they moved in.

I had noticed that they had left a ton of stuff on the driveway. I asked my other neighbor if she knew why they had left so much stuff and she said that they pretty much left in the middle of the night and that what was left was pretty much up for the taking.....WHAT??

Of course I was trying not to show my excitement. I knew that this was a really sad thing for that family, but for me...someone who loves other people's trash, this was awesome...

I waited for Scott to get home from work and once we had eaten dinner and gotten the kids off to bed, we drove around the corner and "scoped" out the place. I suddenly felt like I should be dressed in all black and have a ski mask on. Anyway, once we looked at what we could see from the truck, we decided that it would be easier to go back home and walk back with the dolly.

Oh my, I was like a kid in a candy, clothes, furniture, car seats, strollers, exercise equipment, dishes, etc...all just left in the driveway. It took us several trips, but we finally got it all home. Lots and lots of least that's what I thought.

In the picture you can see a train table, Treadmill, a couple of benches, a white rocker and several other small little items. OK, so what's the problem your asking?

Let me just tell you first that Scott and I hauled that Treadmill all the way around the corner and it was NOT light. We plugged it in....yep, you guessed it...IT DIDN'T WORK! OK, strike one...

The cute train table I cleaned and hauled into Jackson's room....yep, strike two. It was missing several pieces of track and was way to big for his room! Bummer

The white rocker, well it is still in my backyard on the patio, but when I sat down on it, I immediately got my rear end pinched! There is a huge crack all the way down the seat. Nothing that a cushion cant fix but....this would have been useful info when I was carrying it all over the neighborhood.

Come on...I am starting to realize WHY all this stuff was left on the driveway. It wasn't all in vein though! I did score on a few of the pieces. Remember the benches?

I brought two benches home. One is this smaller one and the other is a bit larger. I had big plans for these beauties. Today, I'm showing the smaller of the two.

First, I washed it (it was pretty nasty) then I sanded it down and used wood filler to fill in some of the gaps and holes. Then I sprayed all the cracks and detail pieces with black semi-gloss spray paint. Then I went over the whole thing again with a gloss paint (I used a paint brush and roller) Once that had dried, I distressed the edges and sealed it with a water based clear sealer. I think it made that nasty, faded, yucky bench look really nice and very "upscale"

So you see....not all trash is going to make a good treasure, some of it actually is TRASH, but if your willing to haul it around your neighborhood. You may find some treasures even among the trash. Thanks for stopping by,