Thursday, February 28, 2013

photo thank you cards {using picmonkey}

photo ty 2

I wanted to share a photo thank you card I made using picmonkey. This one happens to be a ‘thank you’ for Christmas gifts from friends and family that sent us Christmas gifts that we weren’t able to thank ‘in person’{aka skype} on Christmas. I chose the ‘boys in their Christmas morning jammies’ picture, but this idea can be used for really any occasion. Just use a picture from the holiday or event and use picmonkey editing to add text and some other embellishment such as photo corners, in this instance. I chose a font called ‘schoolbell’ because it looks more like juvenille handwriting. The font, ‘eraser dust’ was a close second.
I think you can have fun with this. Hope you give it a try. :)
I had planned on printing them out on paper like I did for a Christmas card in 2011, but my printer was making the sepia look funny this time, so I just affixed regular pictures to recycled brown kraft paper note cards.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

favorite salad~kale

Kale salad 3

Can you be addicted to a salad?
I have been eating copious amounts of this salad lately! I make it for dinner and eat the leftovers for lunch for several days. One day I had two huge bowls of it.  I have been serving it so much I think Jeff is starting to hate it…{he does that when he has to eat the same thing over and over, ha ha}. So, I guess I will just have to keep it for my lunches for awhile! The salad was still even pretty good when I used the tough, curly kale when the tuscan kale was sold out and I just was craving this salad. But going forward, I would stick with the tuscan kale {I get it at Trader Joe’s or loose at Whole Foods, but regular grocers may carry the non-curly variety, too}.

It’s a simple, quick salad: kale, cherry tomatoes, toasted bread {maybe that’s why I love it???}, shaved parmesan on top and a creamy lemon dressing. I saw this recipe in a fall/winter Williams Sonoma catalog and pinned it from their site. I have been making it ever since!

Here’s the {recipe}.

I hope you enjoy it too!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

re-imagined furniture {from 'not so pretty' to cute}

Luc Detail bookcase

I love to repurpose furniture, whether it’s new or old. {Frankly, I have an obsession for painting furniture, but this is a first with regards to cutting things apart and making it different} This open-backed bookcase or etegere as the french say {he is named after a French man afterall...} in Luc’s room is a complete repurpose or re-imagine if you will. It started out as a plastic-y brown “wood” L-shaped tv stand/shelves that Jeff’s parents had when he was growing up. He had it when I met him along with other hand-me-downs in his bachelor pad. It was one of the few things we have had all these years, since it served as storage shelving in our basement. Who can’t use more storage, right? I had planned on taking a ‘before’ picture before it was deconstructed, but one early Saturday morning in September Jeff was up sawing away and started to paint it before I even got downstairs for the day. I was able to snap a picture of one of the spindles so you can see what we started with.

Bookcase before
{ahhh, the power of paint}

This idea came to me one night when I was looking at a magazine and admiring a turned leg open-backed bookcase. I am always thinking about how to improve things and make them beautiful...then it dawned on me that we had this L-shaped piece downstairs that Jeff could saw off the ends of the bottom two shelves that extended to make the single tower and give us the same look in the nursery.

Luc Bookcase2a

So cute, right???
I think it might be my favorite thing in the nursery {besides the sweet occupant of this room, of course}. Most everything else is cream or neutrals so this really gives a punch of color while still keeping the room soothing and not jarring. And I can take no credit for the color idea {I probably would of painted it something neutral even though I did want some orange in the room}. When I told Jeff my idea for this and the room’s color scheme, it was his idea to paint it orange. I immediately liked that idea!

See that cute egg on the top? That’s a new piggy bank we got from Jeff’s mom with money she gave him for Christmas {it’s very appropriate since she is a saver}. It’s so stinkin cute…it’s a “Nest Egg” and has a little saying, “no matter how big or small my dreams, this Nest Egg will help save for them all”.
Luc Nest Bank

So, next time you are thinking you want or need something in your house, shop your own house first and see what you can’t re-imagine instead, you might surprise yourself. I would of never used the piece as it was but with some ingenuity…things can turn out so much better!

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Thursday, February 14, 2013

what I’ve been up to for valentine’s day

Hope you had a nice Valentine’s Day!

Geesh, you would think it’s the holidays, I’ve been so busy. There have been several things I have wanted to post about but literally have not had a minute to sit down and write anything!
In my defense, I did host our neighborhood playgroup last week and this week I have been busy with all the valentine’s projects and getting ready for a quick visit of some family.

Here's what I have been up to this week.

Pottery Barn Kids inspired valentine’s envelope

valentines envelope {I made the envelope, but let Reed decorate with the red sparkly hearts to personalize}

Reed’s valentine to his friends
{animal finger crayons inside}
valentines gift

School Party treats
{each person had their own individual cookie, they loved it!}
valentine's cookies

Our house is a revolving door because besides the house guests this weekend, my mom is coming for a visit next week. I hope to post when I have a chance in the upcoming weeks. :)

Monday, February 4, 2013

ideas for making valentine’s special

What are your plans for Valentine’s day? How do you make it special? Do you need some inspiration?

As the day approaches, I am trying to narrow down some ideas to make the day special. I also need some ideas for a couple valentine-party treats and valentines from Reed to his friends at school. Thank goodness I have been pinning ideas for weeks now.

Here’s some ideas that I am considering

heart milk cube
{heart in the milk}

heart pancakes

heart rice krispies
{because it just seems more special on a stick}

strawberry kabobs

heart marshmallows

conversation hearts  +
food safe pen{hoping to take idea of conversation hearts but use food-safe marker to write each child’s name}

write valentine        {valentine’s are tough when you have to give to fellow boy classmates…}

wine pops
{and for my valentine…wine pops, mmm}

you can get more inspiration on my valentine’s board {here}.

Friday, February 1, 2013

stenciled valentine’s banner tutorial

valentine's banner2a 
This little banner is so quick & easy to do {which almost never happens with my ‘projects’, ha ha} that I thought you might like to make one, too. Even with photographing, it took me about an hour & a half. It was a great naptime project! I like having a bit of whimsy around the house these days. :)

Here are the supplies I used to create this + clear fabric tac {I happened to have everything, which made it free and spur of the moment since the boys were sleeping at the same time}. If you don’t have a heart cookie cutter you could always just create a heart and then tracing that on a heavier cardstock to create a stencil.
banner suppliesI recently stocked up on the wide burlap “ribbon” from Michaels. It’s by the flower arranging/natural material section. {You know burlap is on high demand these days so you’ve got to pick it up when you can find it} This made the project super easy since I just measured the length of each “flag”.  You will also need something that you can stencil on to keep the paint off your table.

I first measured how long I needed my banner to be by holding the twine up to my mantel with some scoop to it. Mine is about 7 ft long with a little twine dangling on each end. I decided to make 7 flags along the twine.

Position your stencil on your flag that is pleasing to you. I made the bottom tip of the heart 1 inch from the bottom and took into account that I would be folding the top down over the twine. In case you have never stenciled, after you squirt some craft paint out, dip your foam pouncer brush in and then pounce the excess paint off the brush before you put it on what you are stenciling {especially when you are near the edges of the stencil }.
banner stencil

banner finished stencil

All 7 flags stenciled and drying . {drying on this open weave fabric took no time and with stenciling, you don’t use much paint so that makes it dry fast, too}.
banner layed out

I was able to clean up my mess while they dried and then turned them over face down to attach the twine. I centered my first flag on the twine and then spaced the remaining ones 3 1/2 inch apart. I added a bit of hot glue along the twine to attach to the burlap. I did find however using hot glue to fold over the top was not a good idea b/c it is soooo hot to work with trying to fold over such an open weave. I may have burned my fingers a few times before I went to plan b. LOL! So I used the hot glue to get the twine to attach quick, but came back with clear fabric tac to fold over the top.
banner attach twine

If you’ve ever worked with burlap, you know it’s not going to be all perfectly straight and there is going to be some fraying. And you don’t see too much of the back folded part once it’s hung anyway. :)
banner fold over

I am liking the bit of rustic & handmade quality to this project. I am slowly but surely appreciating things that don’t look perfect. ha ha
valentine's banner

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