Wednesday, May 30, 2012

New Home Inspiration {Homework/Craft/Play Zone}

For years I have wanted a play room. I had wished we had a place to put all of the kids toys other than their bedroom. Now I have the ability to do just that and they've outgrown the need. The need for a playroom has now transformed into the need for a homework/craft room.  Of course, Love will still need a place to just play.

So in the basement we will be using one end of the narrow main room as that such zone. We will be adding our Ikea bookcase, old kitchen table and hopefully a new desk table. Yea, I'm an Ikea addict.

EXPEDIT Shelving unit IKEA Finished on all sides. Can also be used as a room divider.LIATORP Dining table IKEA Extendable dining table with 1 extra leaf seats 4-6; makes it possible to adjust the table size according to need.VIKA AMON/VIKA ADILS Table IKEA

Here's an idea of how I intend to organize the space.

Colorful office decor

The kitchen table will go in the middle of the space for crafts and play.

Wall shelves

Desk table at the end of the room. This will also function as the buffet when we entertain.

Floating shelf and framed artwork

We will be using the bookcase on the side wall to house all the art supplies and such.

Entertainment center

I think this room is a great idea on how we can arrange the space but we'll be going a bit more eclectic/casual with the decorating.

Pinned Image

Collected chairs around the Ikea table, united by a single bright color.
(I'm currently eagerly awaiting to spray paint something!!)

Pinned Image

I love the funkiness of this space. How fun would a whole chalkboard wall be?

Oregano Walls

This image is way more practical. Wipe those computers and folders off the desks and put out some appitizers and you're ready for guests!

Obviously we will need to be in the space before we figure any of this out for sure. But my mind is reeling with ideas. Can't wait to see if any of them will actually work!

How do you entertain in your space? Do you intentionally space plan for hosting events? Or I'm the only weirdo?

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

New Home Inspirations {The Family Room}

My favorite feature of our new home....the basement! It's this room I'm looking forward to playing with the most. I have a feeling it's where the creativity will really flow. (Of course I don't have any Before pictures to share, as of now...we don't live there yet!:)

The basement will house the Family Room with a separate homework/craft/play zone for the kids. It also includes the Studio/Craft room, Laundry Room and Mama Bathroom. Off the back of the basement is the Patio.

The overall feel of the space I would like to create is FUN. Yep, that's the word for the basement Family Room. Here's a little idea of what I had in mind....

You really can't get much more fun than the Good Luck Charlie house. If you're not familiar with this adorable set check out the rundown at Hooked on Houses.

I also came across this mood board via Pinterest by Ashley at 7th House on the Left.

getthelook goodluckcharlie AROUND THE HOUSE: GOOD LUCK CHARLIE

She nailed it! Color... Lots of color. Interactive art wall, graphic patterns, whimsy, earthy touches. And more color.   

Pretty much all of our living room furniture will go down to the basement Family Room. While I have a dark gray sofa and black TV stand, I'm hoping some DIY and TLC will be able to transform my current pieces into something more vibrant and playful.

This will also be the space where we entertain the most. So neutral backdrops will still be a must. (After all, my girly girl will be having pretty pink parties down there.)

Are there any TV/Movie sets you'd love to recreate? 

Sunday, May 27, 2012


I mentioned that we have a three week gap in our home move. Thought I'd share some of the details... Luckily we are able to drift around a few states as friends and family take us in. The kids are especially excited about our three week adventure. I have to say I am too. After all that packing and cleaning I'm in some serious need of a mind break. Undivided attention for my kids. Unfortunatly Alan's job still demands his time so he's only getting a couple weeks of freedom. The rest will be in a cheap motel. And we're ok with that. Spending a few weeks misplaced is a small price to pay for having all our ducks line up in a neat little row. So as summer officially started for our county on Friday afternoon, my kids took off to the grandparents for the weekend while Alan and I house and dog sit for some friends. I will join my kids Monday. This will be our unofficial start to summer. We're making our "sand pail" list and counting the days of summer fun we get to share. Theme for the summer...FUN AND FRIENDSHIP. Cant wait to share our crazy journey with you.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

New home...New direction

It's about time I share some of our decorating ideas for the new home. As I mentioned here, we plan to go in a whole new direction for this home. Our last home was a builder home, I felt the gray and brownish colors were what suited it best. Not that I didn't try to go outrageous with the brights...
Our new home has character. It can handle something more fun. And that's what I intend. While I once wanted my home to feel warm and, I'm after cheerful and happy.

I love the idea of using neutrals, my favorite is gray, as a backdrop and letting other colors pop.

I'm a mom with three kids...I need as much happy as I can get!

Here's an idea of what I had in mind...

Young House Love pretty much sums up my style direction in their new home. Although I'm still looking for my own "Sue" to help guide me.

Although this talented duo is much more skilled in the DIY department than either my husband or myself. If you visit this blog for any length of time you realize their home is both Happy and Inviting. Thanks for inspiring YHL!

Stay tuned...I'll be going in more detail of all my random house ideas during the next couple of weeks.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Done Deal

Today was they day, the day that we officially moved out of our home. I had big plans for today. Most of the plans involved the kids during their last day of school. But some of them were centered towards memory making.

I especially wanted to take a few last shots of Ada in her pink stripe room. Maybe something to frame. Ada felt differently. She decided she really didn’t feel like taking a picture this morning, rather, she decided to pout in the middle of floor. last pink picture. That's OK. I don't need a picture to make a memory. I have plenty.

Last day in our current home

The boys, on the other hand, were more than willing to share a special moment with me. Alex even wanted to kiss every corner of the house...and he did! Now that was the sentiment I was looking for.

Alex kissing every corner!

And Hubby later told me he had a hard time driving away. I sometimes don't give that man credit for affections. But every once in a while...he surprises me. Today was one of those days. Love him.

Playing with Ada and her buddy

I, myself, had a harder time today saying goodbye to our wonderful teachers than I did the home we created the last 5 years. And if you know know I am not the Mama who weeps at milestones such as these. Usually.  I welcome the first day of school and question my ability to handle the summers. Most summers. This summer will be different. This summer...we have plans!

But, for the next three weeks, we sit without a home to call ours...yet. We have one home being loved by renters and another home being loved by the previous owners. We also have some of the most wonderful homes I know welcoming our company in the meantime. We are truly blessed.

Having no place to go "home" to has a sense of freedom. No worries. What a way to start the summer!

Hakuna Matata my friends.

Monday, May 21, 2012

AdaLove's Baptism Luncheon

I mentioned Ada's Baptism Luncheon here and here and thought I would share a bit more of the details. 

This was honestly one of my favorite entertaining experiences. Not because I went all out, but because everything came together in the end. Anyone who has invited guests to their home, in any capacity, knows the stress that goes into making everything "perfect". Yet, Ada's baptism was honestly a stress free day. It all came together like I've never had a event do before. Amazing!

AdaLove Baptism
I tried not to put too much thought into the morning (maybe that accounts for the lack of stress!). The colors navy and yellow simply evolved as I started to coordinate outfits and in-season flowers.

Kids during Ada's Baptism Luncheon
This doily pennant was super simple to make. After stenciling letters with gold paint onto the doilies, I hung them with twine from the fireplace. Can't get much easier than that.
Doily Pennant
"God Bless AdaLove" was what the day was all about.
Baptism Luncheon Mantle
Another super simple pennant (yes, I have a thing for pennants). This time I just folded the doilies over the twine and added some double sided tape inside to help them stay. OK, maybe this was the easiest pennant!
Baptism Luncheon Buffet
And, just for fun, here's a shot of the special lady....busted for stealing something yummy. 
Sneaky Girl
And, as I mentioned before, we used our chalkboard as a guest book. Guests were asked to "Leave a Note of Love for AdaLove".
Guest Book Chalkboard

This day was about Ada and about Faith. 
It was a beautiful day we were able to share with family and friends. We are truly blessed!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Fun Photo Toppers

A few years ago I was in charge of the End of School party at my son's preschool. When you have a class with only 8 kids, you can do something a bit more detailed.
I was inspired by this etsy shop to create some photo cupcake toppers. I asked the kids to make funny faces for me as I took their photo at an earlier spring party. Not all obliged. A few, including my own, had to have their snapshot taken at the ball field. It didn't matter...they turned out adorable anyway.

Photo Cupcake Toppers

The photos were printed on printer paper, cut out with an exacto knife then hot glued onto lollipop sticks. Sounds simple right? Well, it really was. I totally recommend these toppers to let any group of kids feel super special.

Who wouldn't want to see themselves on top of their own cupcake?
How do you celebrate the End of School Party?

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Mermaid Party

Last year a friend of mine asked me to help with her daughters Mermaid themed birthday party at our local pool. Of course I was all in!

The invitations she purchased from this etsy shop were the party's inspiration.

Under the Sea Party Invitation, Birthday, Baby Shower, Bridal Shower, Any Occasion

The idea was beautiful, the catch was...Our Aquatic Center could care less about how cute you want your party to be. So, not only was there a limited budget, we only had about 20 minutes to set up before the party began. Challenge accepted...

Here is what we came up with...

3M Command Wall Hooks ended up being my best friend on this project. I was able to hang up two hooks, which held up a table cloth as the backdrop. I found some faux plants I thought looked the most like seaweed, cut off the stems and hung from the fishing line. The bubbles were created by cutting circles out of glossy velum paper and sewn together on my sewing machine. they were then hung from the room's drop ceiling. Sea life was hand drawn onto poster board, cut out and glittered in silver.

Mermaid theme party

An old frame was painted the perfect shade of aqua to coordinate with the invitations. While I had hoped to hang the frame, it appeared to be too heavy to hang from the drop ceiling, so it was propped up against the wall instead. Still beautiful. I then used the invitation again as inspiration to print and cut out the birthday girl's name, taped it to the fish net and called the backdrop finished.

My friend was in charge of the food part of the party. She ordered the cake special from Wal-Mart (I know! who knew?), topped it with chocolate shells she also ordered off etsy. (So sorry I don't know which shop)

An old treasure box I had laying around was used to hold the chocolate shell and coin favors.

And of course there was blue punch!

The centerpieces were a special project I loved working on!  I took some unfinished wood bird feeders from Michael's, painted them a sand color and tried to let the mermaids' castles come to life.

Sand was stolen used from the local park, painted onto the sides and sprinkled around the base. I tried to achieve the underwater look by gluing moss and dried baby's breath around each castle. I have no idea what the baby's breath represents in the sea world but it worked for me.

The tables were covered in blue table cloths and topped with the perfect shade of blue netting material I found at Hobby Lobby. I'm not sure what that netting is usually used for but it shimmered and, although you can't tell in the photo, it looked like waves on the tables.

The Happy Birthday Banner was my last thought...oops. I had run out of money but was able to pull out some ribbon I already had and use clothes pins to hang printed letters. The space was very tight; the banner was just enough to add something special to this side of the room. 

 Since we were extremely limited on time at the Aquatic Center and I still needed to make sure everything would work as planned...I set up the scene in my living room first. Again, the 3M wall hooks helped me out.

That was such a fun birthday to help with! Thanks to my gal pal for the opportunity!

So what do you think? Does it look like our inspiration invitation? 

Monday, May 14, 2012

Once Upon a Time...

The boys lived in a Castle.

When they were little (you know, compared to now) all I wanted was for them to be knightly. I wanted them to be chivalrous, to treat every lady as a princess. I wanted my boys to be some one's Knight in Shinning Armor. My desires for them are still evolving although I will always hope they are some one's Prince Charming...any who...

When we first bought our home I tried to create their own Kingdom. It was actually a lot of fun, and thanks to a line at IKEA, I was pretty successful.

Their Mommom made them King capes for Christmas.
I started out by painting Castle walls.  I taped off the bricks with painters tape and took some gray glaze and just rubbed it on with a rag. The texture if the walls was extremely helpful in creating that brick look. Lastly, I took a small paint brush and painted some shadows, using the window as my light source. A little time consuming but super easy.

IKEA dragon, lantern and toy box
 All of the accessories and furniture in the room came from IKEA.

The knightly dress up area
Every Knight needs some treasure. The toy chest was perfect for housing our dress up clothes. It's sad to me the boys don't dress up anymore.

IKEA bed
This IKEA bed was perfect for our needs. (doesn't look like they sell it anymore) The boys were still small and I was worried about Andy being on the top bunk. Since this bed was so much lower to the ground, I felt it was safer.

Look how little....
What the Castle room typically looked like
It wasn't long before they out grew the castle theme room. And that will probably be the last theme room we ever create.

So there you have it.. Our once upon a time Kingdom.

Do you have a theme room? Do your kids still love it?

Still Looking Back

Well, I had hoped to share all my brilliant* ideas on my new blog...uh...small problem...

We're moving.

All brilliant idea materials have been packed away. And it will be a month before we're are able to produce anything the mind thinks up. So...

We'll be taking a look backwards for the next month. And I'm OK with that. I want to remember all the good, bad and ugly of this life I've lived the past 5 years. Hope you'll join me as I take a stroll down memory lane.

*brilliant = what I actually got off my keester to create.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

AdaLove....The photographer

Scanning through some photos I came upon these....


Too sweet not to share!