Sunday, August 29, 2010

'Tis the Night Before School

And all through our nest,
The children are dreaming about doing their best.

The lunches are packed with good food to nourish,
So my little scholars are ready to flourish.

The shoes are all ready to slip on to feet,
When they walk out the door and stroll down the street.
Ready to lead and to be a good friend,
There's opportunity for success around every bend.

The backpacks are full with tools of the trade,
As they begin their journey and embark on their crusade.

The clothing is ironed and ready to wear,
For they cannot go to school completely bare!

The time has come to send them back to the grind,
To learn, to lead, to love, to be kind.

Good luck my little scholars, go forth and learn!
Appreciate each opportunity that's around every turn.

Mom xoxo

Welcome Fall

Fall is by far my favourite season...the crisp air, the colours, the return of routine...and of course, Halloween! I am so excited to be joining the Fall Festival over at This Blessed excited to share and celebrate all that is fall!
Let's begin with the front door...shall we?
The door that at times seems to be 'revolving'; the door that welcomes our visitors and welcomes us home at the end of a busy day.

To give a little context to this project, you must know that last week I was drawn to anything 'rosette'...rosette headbands; rosette hairpins; rosettes on lamps, on lapels, on shoes...rosettes on bedding. Then I got to thinking (I know, a dangerous thing:)...what says cozy fall days like handmade rosettes in rustic colours on a weathered wreath?
I dare say...nothing:)

After many hours (and my husband can vouch for that!) in blogland searching out tutorials...I stumbled upon Coco Loves Vintage...who lead me to the best darn tutorials a rosette-lovin' gal could ask for.
Check them out at Charm Bracelet Diva.

A visit to Goodwill was in order! I picked up these fabrics for a whopping $2 and set to work...
I heated up the ol' hot glue gun, scrounged up some felt remnants (for the backing) and set to work. A few minutes later...

...a little fall-inspired beauty to welcome us home at the end of our day!

Things in our home are never really complete...I'm always changing something! This wreath will be no different...I already feel the need to craft some rosettes in different hues to make them POP!
That sounds like a project for a cool fall afternoon!

I'm also linking to Toot Your Horn Tuesday at A Silly Little Sparrow.
And...Saturday Nite Special at Funky Junk Interiors;
...Making the World Cuter Mondays;
...Made By You Mondays at Skip to My Lou;
And finally...Just Something I Whipped Up at the Girl Creative;
Tweaking Your Home for Fall @ Pure Style Home.

Friday, August 27, 2010

A Little Renovation and a Lot of Organization

In our wee little home ~ just over 1000 square feet to share among the five of us ~ space is at a premium! We've worked and reworked many a nook and cranny into a useful matter the size. We can now say the same for our front closet...our take on a mudroom.

Meet our old, pathetic, drab closet...

It's scary to think that that's the yellow I chose when we first moved in...YIKES!!

Sadly, the door met its end during a sock hockey game gone wrong! It was New Year's Eve 2010 and the cousins and the kiddies were battling for bragging rights! One thing led to another and the door was kicked right off the wall!
Queue door removal...more than a year ago! We've looked at the open closet (which was full of the regular front closet stuff) for far too long.

So began the transformation.

We removed the shelf and rod to make room for more useful storage solutions.

We covered the walls with bead board and installed a shelf near the top, and two on the bottom. I caulked and painted...and painted some more!

We added moldings around the door to make it blend with the other doors in the hallway.

And voila...our take on a mud-room...that works for us!
I apologize for the pictures, the closet is in the hallway and I couldn't get 'in front' of it for the perfect shot!
I purchased the hooks at Dollarama for $1.25 each!
The baskets are from Micheal's...I used a 40% off coupon so they came out to about $10 each...not bad.

I prettied-up a not-so-pretty boot tray with some dollar store stones.
The closet-redo is complete just in time for back to school!


I'm linking this post to...
Saturday Nite Special over at Funky Junk Interiors.
Weekend Wrap-Up Party at Tatertots and Jello;
Creative Organizing Ideas @ The Inspired Room.

Monday, August 23, 2010

M is for Monogram

Since we've returned from holidays this little home of ours has been a construction zone...we squeezed a summer's worth of projects in to one and a half weeks! I am just now digging myself out from beneath the mess!

With the trim in the back entrance complete; a new 'mudroom' - stay tuned for the before and after - and a freshly painted front door checked off our list...I had a little time of my own. I set to work making monogrammed prints for each of my children.

Inspiration struck on a recent treasure-hunting expedition to Goodwill...where I spotted this...ummm...little beauty???

I knew instantly that the frame was perfect for Ava's room ~ the little girl dancing in the mactac meadow...not so much! I began by removing everything from the frame and made my own backing from a cereal box.

I purchased these initials at Micheal's for 75 cents...the black didn't jive with Ava's room so I traced it onto some cream-coloured paper and cut it out.

I covered the cereal box (from above) with some scrap-booking paper. Put it all together...and...
I added the flower from a hat that Little Miss Ava refuses to wear!

For Elle...

For Kieran...

For under $10, I created monogrammed prints to match their personalities!

I'm linking to these parties...
Letting the Creative Tuesday Juices Flow at These Creative Juices.
Toot Your Horn Tuesday at A Silly Little Sparrow.
Get Your Craft on Tuesday at Today's Creative Blog.
Transformation Thursday at The Shabby Chic Cottage.
New Friend Friday over at The Girl Creative.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Holiday with Matthew Mead

A while back I ordered Matthew Mead's new Holiday Book-a-zine online...because it's only available online and I wanted to make sure I received my copy!

Today I skipped on over to his website and was wowed by the little sneak peek. I love what they wrote in the introduction..."For many great gifts, peeking often spoils the surprise.But we are of a different mind: we believe that lifting the veil on something truly beautiful simply makes you want it more."

I like their thinking!

Head on over and check it out...NieNie's family is in the that girl!


Thursday, August 19, 2010

Back to School Means So Many Things!

In our house back to school means...well...back to school for everyone! My husband and I are both teachers and we have three school aged children...grade 5, grade 3 and Kindergarten ~ someone, please tell me where the time has gone!

This summer has been FANTASTIC! We spent three weeks camping with the family and made memories a-plenty! My husband and I traveled to Philadelphia ~ where I attended The Leader in Me conference - fabulous! Then we hopped aboard the Amtrak destined for the Big Apple...also fabulous!
Memories from Seattle ~ 2010

And now, our carefree life of no-schedules and sleeping in is drawing to a close as the beginning of a new school year is on the horizon. If I can be honest for a minute...I think I am the only person in the house who is excited about that prospect!

The back-to-school clothing and supplies were purchased months ag0 (I'm not kidding!) Way back in June we stumbled upon a HUGE sale at Ambercrombie Kids and outfitted the kiddies and we've since picked up odds 'n sods along the way. I took the easy road this year and ordered school supplies through the school...they'll arrive on day one ready to go! With those jobs out of the way I can focus on getting my house back in space at a time ~ which is no small task!

Today I set out to make over my very own little nook in our master bedroom. To give some context...we live in an older bungalow that from the outside is quite unremarkable...but we have spent the last 10 years making the inside our home. Our master bedroom has no walk-in closet, no ensuite...and until today also no character!
The sad state of affairs before I began...notice the white frames just begging to be finished!

The transformation really began last week as I perused the pages of a Pottery Barn magazine. For some time I have been searching for a way to display and organize my seems I have a bit of a fetish!
Pottery Barn Jewelry Organizer
The I-want-immediate-satisfaction part of me said just order them! Then my conscience (husband) spoke to me! With reality riding on my shoulder, I set off with a goal...recreate PB beauty on a budget! First stop...Next to New where I purchased 3 wooden frames for $4 total...a far cry from the $70+ for the PB originals. I sprayed the frames white ~ I would have preferred my favourite Rustoleum Heirloom White, but there was none to be had so I settled for plain ole white.
I gathered my tools ~ tin snips (that apparently have weathered one too many rain storms - just look at that rust!), chicken wire (recently salvaged from a garden area in our yard) and a stapler (yes, an office stapler)! The only other one we had is too heavy-duty for this little make over!
I turned the frame over and used the handy-dandy office staple to staple the chicken-wire to the frame...being sure to pull it taught along the way.
Once assembled, I achieved the weathered-look by lightly sanding the ridges of the frame.
And...that's it!!
This project really was that easy! I'm glad that I had my conscience (husband) at the onset to talk some sense in to me! Oh, and I'm glad my friend and sister-in-law gave me the's perfect for the space! Thanks Steph!

Drum roll please...

All I need is the perfect little bench...nothing a visit to a few thrift stores won't remedy ~ I see another project in my future!

I'm linking this post to these fun parties...
Toot Your Horn Tuesdays @ Silly Little Sparrow.
Creative Share @ The Trendy Treehouse.
Strut Your Stuff @ Somewhat Simple.
Transformation Thursdays @ The Shabby Chic Cottage.
Show off Your Stuff Party @ Fireflies and Jellybeans.

Creative Organization @ The Inspired Room.