Sunday, July 29, 2012

Let's Get Some Artwork Up!

I have a closet full off stuff that is just waiting to be used somewhere in the house, I just have to decide where to put it first. One item that has been eating at me is a rather large piece of artwork that had a perfect spot in our last house, but is struggling in this house.

The painting is very subtle and can be a great compliment to many rooms but the frame is less than desirable. That's probably why I was able to get this on clearance for $25 years ago. Time to get out the spray paint again. And what do ya know, I already had a can of espresso colored spray paint from when I painted that clock last year.

It was no question that we had to put this in our bedroom. I love hanging photos but I also felt that one nice piece of artwork would bring everything together. Plus, there are tiny hints of red in the painting so that is what really sold me.

Now I'm really motivated and noticed a few other picture frames that I bought at Ikea a few months ago. The intention was to put a photo collage on a shelf we received as a hand me down from Ryan's parents.  This was my plan.

That meant I needed to take another trip to Ikea to purchase all matching ones. If you've ever bought frames at Ikea you know that the mat sizes are less than user friendly. No one develops photos at that size so if took some time to find a website that would develop then atleast somewhat close to what I needed. I checked out Walmart, Ritz, and Shutterfly with no luck. Snapfish came up in my search and had what I needed. Yay!

I got it pretty close to the picture if you ask me! I'm still playing around with them alittle but all and all I'm very happy. Plus, the photo quality from Snapfish was amazing. Definitely using them again.

Photos really make a house feel more like a home. I can't believe we went so long without these.

Two more projects checked off the unfinished list!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Fancy Full Length Mirror

I've never thought of myself as someone who doesn't finish projects they start. Now looking around my house I am starting to notice a ton of little things that I started and without finishing on moved onto something else. So disappointed in myself! Since my next big thing that I want to start is my bathroom I've promised myself that I will finish all the things I started first. Today is the full length mirror project that I started last fall. My parents game me this mirror that they didn't have a use for anymore.

If there's one thing I hate its oak. It is just so 1991. No thanks. It is a nice mirror though so I figured some spray paint would pretty it up fast.

So just alittle bit of prepping and I spray painted the crap out of it.

Pretty easy project. I had Ryan screw it up on the wall in our bedroom and it was good to go. Or so I thought. After the screws went in and made some unsightly holes I had to patch those up. Plus, the white spray paint I used made it more gray looking rather than the nice creamy white I have on all the trim and doors in the house. Weird, time to get out Behr Creamy White again. I swear I lost count on the gallons that we've bought since we moved in.

Using a tiny brush I was able to get all the details painted nice and pretty. An hour later we've got a finished project!

I know it probably doesn't look like much of a difference but it really did alot.

Cheers to another project finished!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Organized Closets = Organized Life

A few months back I offered to help my friend organize her cabinets and closets. Her and her husband we beginning to entertain the idea of selling their house and I always feel like the more organized a home looks, the more it feels like there is alot of storage. So the first thing was to see what we were getting ourselves into.

I promise I didn't scream. I was more excited then anything. All we had to do was start grabbing things out of the closet so we could actually get the door open. And I mean it. If you're really going to organize take EVERYTHING out. Decided then what you want to keep, donate, or just throw away. Second, decide if the item should even be in that closet. Bath toys should be in the bathroom, books should be on the book shelf, etc.

I was finally able to get in alittle further to make an attempt on a better before picture. Once we sorted through every tiny thing we put what belonged back in the closet on the shelves.

Pretty crazy huh? She already had the cute little baskets so there was no money spent during this organizing project.

I did suggest a few things like extra clothes hangers and a hamper to help keep it neat and clean though. After this was done I came over a second weekend and we did the same with a kitchen cabinet.

Notice that none of these items look like kitchen tools, dishes, or food. Ok, so if you have alot of cabinets it's ok to use one for household items but just looking at this is giving me an anxiety attack. I would never be able to find anything in here. So we did the same thing we did with the closet. Take everything out and put things where they belong.

Looks to me like alot of stuff didn't belong. What a difference! So now when folks come over to look at there house to buy and open up the closets and cabinets they will feel like there is more than enough room for all of their stuff. Yay!

Now all of these pretty closets made me take a second look at my closets. They weren't too messy but I realized the shelves were less than user friendly.

If you notice the shelves are a nasty particle board and they are too shallow. Our towels are literally falling off. And see how the brackets are actually longer than the shelves. These are not right! The same thing was going on in the linen closet.

This was driving me absolutely bonkers so I made Ryan take his truck to Menards to get me some shelving (they were too long to fit in my SUV.) A few cuts here and another few cuts there and done.

What a difference! I don't even know what to put on the top shelf now that I have so much room.

I purchased some baskets at Ikea for $12 a piece to keep some of our wash cloths and all of my extra hair and makeup tools.

I just love my closets now! I don't get stressed out everytime I have to put away blankets. Plus I have more room for all of our stuff.

My super cute sewing box.

And what is this you ask? This stores all of the owners manuals for everything in our entire house. Plus, it's organized by room!

The last thing on the bottom of the closet is another one of my favorite. Ryan's Bin O'Camoe. Seriously, I have how he only wears his camoflage a few times of year and it was always taking up space in our closet. So I put it in here.

I get really excited whenever it comes to organizing. One of my favorite blogs is I Heart Organizing. You should check it out for some very clever tips. You might be inspired just like I was.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Our Blank Wall

As long as me and Ryan have lived together, about seven years, we have never had anything above our master bed. This really wasn't by choice, it was just my inability to choose something to put there. Whatever came my way was either too big, too small, too expensive, or too cheap looking. I swear I don't have commitment issues.

Even after moving into a different house you would think I could make up my mind. Well, we've been here for almost two years and I finally figured it out. For once I didn't come up with the idea from Pinterest, I thought of it all on my own. I LOVE oval frames so I knew I wanted to use those in one of the most important spots in the house. I found an amazing deal on on 8 x 10 matted frames, 2 for $20! Plus, if you get them shipped to the store you don't have to pay for shipping.

I was so excited to bring the home. I had already ordered my photos from Shutterfly and they were ready and waiting to be put into a frame. I chose some artistic photos taken at our wedding. It seemed quite fitting if you ask me.

When I opened the packages when I got home I just wasn't very excited anymore. The white mat just didn't seem to go with our bedrooms red and cherry wood theme. Mmmmm... That was a thinker.  Then I remembered the my favorite thing to do. Spray paint!

To be totally honest, I don't really care what brand of spray paint I use. I never have had any issues with any kind and Valspar was the cheapest at my hardware store. I chose the Royal Garnet color in Satin because that was the closest I could get to matching our comforter. Spray paint just doesn't have the variety as other paint for the home. We make due. I got to work.

Easy! It only took an hour to dry and then I put my frames together. I couldn't believe how fast I got these completed and up on the wall.

I'm kind of glad I waited to decide now just because we were able to make it special and really personal.

The other thing I like about it is it doesn't scream wedding. We can leave these up for years and not feel like we're sleeping under a wedding shrine.

I've got other artwork projects in the works, just waiting for UPS to deliver the goods. My patience is always being tested.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Sprucing Up Another Garage

I never thought I would be so excited about garages before but I've been having a ball with it this summer. First I focused on our main three car garage back in the spring so now I have been working on our garage in the back.

This garage comes in really handy for storing our boat and random pieces of furniture that I don't want to part with but don't quite know what to do with it yet. It also will be a great spot to store all of my gardening supplies for when we have our vegetable garden. Just to the left of the garage is the spot for the garden. It needs some work.

I decided that I wanted to the garage to stay with the same color scheme as the house and other garage but also keep some personality.  I came acrossed this photo of a black garage door and I was sold. Black it is!

The old light fixture was not doing it for me. Not only was it plain and boring, but it was also rusty and staining the white siding below (still working on scrubbing it off!) I had an extra exterior light fixture from the set I bought when we replaced the lights on the house so there was no question that this is where we would put it.

Then the subject of the service door came up. Do I leave it gray? Do I paint it black to match the garage door? Do I paint it burgundy to match the soffit and facet?

So I emailed a picture of the half finished project to a bunch of people at work and it was unanimous. Paint the door black to match! And that's just what I did.

So crisp and clean! The only thing left to really finish this project is to replace the concrete apron around the front. Sounds like the perfect job for Ryan. 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Whitefish Challenge

For our one year anniversary we went to Bayfield, WI. It was sort of a honeymoon too since we decided to remodel our kitchen instead of going on a honeymoon after our wedding. We stayed at The Harbor's Edge Motel right across the street from the Ferry.

We even spent a day over on Madeline Island. It was such a great time, we cannot wait to go back and make a camping trip out of it next time. Partly because we got to experience Tom's Burned Down Cafe. Words that describe this bar: junk, tarps, dogs, fires, hippies, etc.

Ryan was super excited to go there. He left me in the dust!

What? You've never seen an 80 year old woman getting her face painted at an outdoor bar?

We only stayed in Bayfield for a weekend but on our way out of town we stopped at a fish market and picked up some Whitefish. I'm not sure was I was really thinking. I don't know much about cooking fish but I guess practice makes perfect.

Lately I've been obsessed with a blog called Gina's Skinny Recipes and I came acrossed a recipe for flounder. I figured Whitefish would work just as well!

Ok, so mine doesn't look quite as nice but I don't care. It was the most amazing fish I've ever tasted!

I served it with homemade sweet potato fries and some aspargus spears. I was expecting to make a gourmet meal tonight but it was super easy. I can't wait to try out more of Gina's recipes.