Thursday, April 22, 2010

Little Projects

We live in tornado country. And it's tornado season. But the last week has been so beautiful and sunny and warm that it's easy to forget how quickly a storm could come up and change all that! In the meanwhile, I'm trying to enjoy the sun and warmth and time outside with the boys. Aren't they cute?

Here's J2, 11 months old. Adorable!

J was posing and the sun was in his face, but he's still a little cutie-pants! He'll be 3 in a couple of weeks. GASP!!! How did that happen?

Of course being outside means that I can do a couple projects. I had a very blue trash can that needed to go in our anything-BUT-blue bedroom.

Hello trashcan, meet spraypaint!

It's amazing what spraypaint can do!

I thought it needed a little more bling though, so I added our initial.


I cook a lot. (I should be thinking of what's for dinner... What IS for dinner?!) Awhile ago I got this perfectly good recipe holder. I'm not sure I'd buy it again--I'd probably find some way to hang recipes from my cupboard with a clothespin or something like that, but since I have it, I might as well make it match! Here's the before:

I unscrewed the hinges to take out the plexiglass, then roughed it up with sandpaper.

Then I used basic white paint and gave in 2 or 3 coats... Can't remember!

I let it dry overnight, then sanded the edges, wiped it with a microfiber cloth and put it back together.

I love it!

Now I've been leaving it out on my counter! Guess I need to sign off and go find a recipe to put in my handy-dandy matching recipe-holder!


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Painted Picture Frame

We have had such beautiful weather lately that we've been outside enjoying it instead of doing projects inside! But there's always nap time. (I LOVE nap time!) Both of my boys are good nappers, so here's a recap of what Mommy got to do!

I sweetly asked my husband if I could have a frame on one of his pictures from B.E. (Before Ellie). G was quite apprehensive, especially since I told him I wanted to paint it! He left it at, "Do what you want," which I took for a green light. Here's the before frame (minus the duck picture that was in it. It was a nice picture of a duck, if you're into that kind of thing. I did have another frame the same size in black metal, so I put the good ol' duck in that and it has a more modern vibe now. No ducks were harmed in the making of this project! I love you, sweetheart!).

I used basic white paint for kitchens and baths that you buy off the shelf at Walmart without even tinting, and a sponge brush--love those things!!!

I was happy with the results after 3 coats, so when I was sure it was dry I used sandpaper to give the frame some lovin'. I'm lovin' how it looks!

With the white frame and a white background in the picture I wasn't lovin' the mat I was planning to use. I didn't think the 'floating' look would go with the country feel of the frame, so I just painted the mat! I used the same green as is found in other places in my kitchen, so the frame really feels like it belongs in that room. I left the paint quite stroaky (I KNOW that's a word!). I think it looks like linen, but maybe I'm too kind to myself.

Whatever the case, I'm thrilled with my new picture that perfectly matches my kitchen. And who wouldn't when it shows off those two little cuties?!

So there you have it! I think even G is convinced!

Thanks for looking!


*I'm linking up to House of Grace's Twice Owned Party

Friday, April 16, 2010

Cool Old Barn

Thanks for stopping by! I'm so thrilled to have followers, so with this, my 3rd post ever, I vow to be here more often. So encouraging that other people like what I make and want to know more! I've gotten lots of comments about our barn, so I thought today I'd tell you more about it.

When I was in college I took a solo roadtrip and fell in love with barns. I took plenty of pictures of barns along my way and thought it would be cool to make my own coffee table book about barns. I love the history that barns suggest, the honest hard work, that barns are usually in the country where family values and quiet living takes place. I didn't realize that there are hundreds of barn coffee table books out there already, and I certainly never thought I'd live somewhere with a barn!

Fast forward a few years (10, actually, but I can't believe that much time has passed since college and I'm not really ready to admit that it has... Ooops!), thru starting my career, living on my own in a big city, moving across country, marrying the man of my dreams and being blessed with two perfect little boys, and here we are, proud owners of a barn. Wanna see?

I know! It's way too cool. And too old to ever be functional again, but still. I can totally see why J (almost 3) loves it. Every time we go outside, he heads to the barn.

I love the architecture, age, and history here. Even though I don't know what the history is! And I love this door!

Here is one of the treasures I unearthed this week. I haven't done much with it, but here is how I found it!

But our cool barn has issues. The former owners were packrats. Don't EVEN get me started on how horrible the house was before we moved in, nor the HOURS we put in cleaning it up enough to live here. That's a whole nother post! Or 5...

I guess the silver lining with the pack rat past of our barn is that's why we have treasures! Like this wood. Oh the ideas!!! What do you think I should do with this?

Can't wait to hear your ideas! Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Trash to Treasure

When the weather got warm enough a few weeks ago, my almost 3-year-old and I started exploring our barn. We inherited this barn when we bought the property. It's cool and old and I like how it looks, but it doesn't have a bright future. The foundation is cracked and not worth it to us to fix up.

So after spending WAY too much time browsing DIY blogs (so inspirational!) I looked at the junk in the barn with completely new eyes.

Suddenly I saw the dirty old window frame...

And the large metal bucket (now repurposed)...

And the coolest old watering can! (It used to look a lot like the metal bucket.)

Sorry, no before pics--I just wasn't that cool! I spray-painted it white, but it was too white and clean. (I did wash it out first--it was found in a barn and still faintly smells of barn, even tho I used bleach!) I'm new to this and live an hour from the nearest Lowe's (seriously!), so I had to use what was on-hand. I used a paper towel to rub on brown paint, let it sit for about 5 minutes, then washed it off in the sink. Not very scientific, but I love the result!

I also found this very cool, weathered, beaten, used board, complete with stains and nails!

I love it! I used a wee little handsaw (need to work on my power tool inventory and skill set!) to trim down one end that wasn't even, then used a small (cheap!) sponge brush to write the words with white kitchen paint. I free-handed it and I think the random results are pretty cool. I thought, once again, that it was too white, so I lightly sanded over the words to make them a little blurry and smudgy--I'm sure that's a word--then outlined one side of the letters with black sharpie. My MIL wants me to do one for her!

There are more 'treasures' out there in that cool old barn, I'm sure. I'm waiting for another field trip with my favorite little guy to get my creativity flowing!


Monday, April 5, 2010


I can't believe I have my very own blog! This is going to be so much fun. There's so much I need to learn and so much I want to post, but only so much time in my day! Bear with me, world. And watch out--here I come!


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