Tuesday, July 29, 2014


So I realize I have been living in this house for over 2 months and haven't posted a single finished room.  I still have things I want to make for every room, but a couple of them are mostly finished....for now.  This is my family room and I'm very happy with the way it turned out.
It started out looking like this.....
Since it was the room we planned on doing the least renovating in, it very quickly turned into the "catch-all" room and everything got thrown in there and it looked like this for months.....
However, if you'll remember, about a week after buying this house last November, I found this sofa and fell in love with it.  I told myself for years, that someday I would have a white sofa and someday was now.
I took that picture in the store and went back the next week and bought it.  It sat in my garage with a blanket over it for 6 months.  Sometimes I just went out there and uncovered it and stared at it.  I planned this whole room around that sofa and while I was painting gallons of primer and paint in that room, I daydreamed about how I wanted it to look.  I wanted a Danish Modern look, but you can see that didn't exactly happen.  My plan changed when sometime back in late March, we took an overnight trip to Grove, Oklahoma and I stumbled on a pair of orange shutters.  I agonized over what color to paint them because I thought the orange was a bit garish.  When my friend Judy came to visit in April, she convinced me to leave them orange and hang them on the ends of the two windows.  Suddenly, orange and white became the colors of my new family room.
That little television is situated perfectly across from my kitchen pass through and I can watch it from the kitchen.  Those windows are so small and so low, I decided not to put any coverings on them.  The room was an add-on at some point and it's kind of funky with it's slanted ceiling and little windows.  We did put replacement windows in, and sadly, replacement windows are even smaller.  The little cabinet on the far left is serving as Sam's bar until I can make something more awesome.
You may recognize the chippy, old armoire in the corner in this picture...
That armoire has a ton of storage in it and is now full of games.  We're big gamers here.  You may remember this armoire from when my friend Karen from Somewhat Quirky Designs came to visit me last year.  I swear I posted about it, but I can't find it. Nor can I find any other picture of it than this before and after.  Karen did a fabulous job painting it with milk paint and I think of her every time I walk into the family room.  Karen also did a wonderful post about painting it and you can check it out HERE.  Thank you Karen!  (Who knew back last June that it would end up being a game cabinet in a family room in a house I had never seen before?!)
We also have a little game table in the family room, thanks to a shipping error by Wayfair.  (I ordered a dining table and they sent me this little table by mistake and told me to just keep it.)
See that little bird mobile above the game table?  Judy made those birds out of fabric and we made them into a mobile when she visited last spring.  They add a splash of bright color and whimsy in an otherwise dull corner.  Thank you Judy!
I think one of the things I enjoy most about this room is the dart board.  We haven't had a dart board since we lived in Montana and I've missed it.  
Our favorite dart games are "301-Double-in, Double-out" and "Minnesota Cricket".  Come on over, I'll teach you how.
A word about the floor in this room....
This is the only floor we did not replace in the entire house.  Partly because it didn't look horrible and partly because I knew that some darts would be sticking in that floor occasionally.  It's single-roll vinyl in a faux wood plank-ish look.  Single roll vinyl means it's just one piece laid out on top of the sub-floor (in this case, concrete).  I don't love it.  Because it's not really fastened down by anything other than the trim, my vacuum cleaner wants to suck it up and it's a pain in the butt.
Those two pictures to the right of the dart board were made for me by Judy.  I love them!  They tie right in with the orange and silver happening in the room.  I'll do a post on those kind of pictures when I get around to it.  They were fun and quick!
I have another room to share with you later this week as well as an awesome recipe.  I think I mentioned that I took on a part-time job again and of course, the work around here never ends.  Right now we are tearing up the back yard and getting ready to put in a patio.  That project keeps changing quicker than a cat can wink an eye.  First it was going to be a hugely intimidating paver patio.  Then we decided on making half of it a covered deck and half of it a patio.  Today we are getting some bids on putting a roof and making it a covered concrete patio, because I like the idea of maybe screening it all in at a later date.  We are still planning on putting in a paver patio just off of it, but maybe a much less intimidating one.  Right now, we're cutting trees and pulling stumps.  AND...because we are terrified that there may come a day when we don't have a project on the horizon...we started tearing up the landscaping in the front...
It's probably going to sit like this until at least next weekend.  Yeah...our neighbors probably hate us.  We have so many projects going on at once and neither the front nor the back look very pretty right now.  It will get worse before it gets better! LOL!
Oh...and one more thing...I was driving down the street in my neighborhood the other day and this was out in someones driveway.  I stopped and asked if it was for sale.  Why yes it was...for $10.  Seriously.  Mel, from Mellywood's Mansion sent me her Thrifting Fairy and next thing I knew, this was in my garage.  Thanks Mel!
I have no idea what it was, but it's a solid piece and it's on wheels.  It needs a roof, but I'm thinking this looks like either a fun bar for the new patio or something awesome for the Golden Child.  It's sitting in my garage, waiting for inspiration to strike.  I'm open to suggestions, in the meantime, it's holding a couple of flower pots and a watering can and waiting for me to make it all "cuted up" as my sister Amber would say.  (One of my other sisters calls me a "craft whore" so really...it could go either way!)
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Thursday, July 17, 2014


In the heat of summer, an easy, hearty, no-cook salad is always appreciated.  That it's pretty too is just a bonus!
This is one of my favorite "cheater recipes" because you can use pre-cooked chicken (think rotisserie from the deli aisle), coleslaw mix from a bag and bottled peanut sauce.  All you have to do is chop a couple of green onions and a red bell pepper.  I like to make my own peanut sauce and I'll share my recipe at the end, but bottled peanut sauce is just as tasty and so easy.  
Thai Peanut Chicken Salad
Serves 6
3 C. cooked, chicken (shredded or cubed)
3/4 C. Thai Peanut Sauce (bottled or homemade)
1 pkg. (16 oz.) coleslaw mix
1 red bell pepper (chopped)
1/3 C. Toasted Sesame or Sesame Ginger salad dressing
3 green onions (sliced)
3/4 C. Chow Mein Noodles 
Pineapple or Mandarin Oranges optional, but ever so pretty.

Mix the chicken and Thai Peanut Sauce in a bowl.  Chop the green onion and red bell pepper.  In a large bowl, put the coleslaw mix, the red bell pepper and pineapple or mandarin oranges if using any. Stir in the salad dressing. Transfer it to an oblong serving dish or platter. (I used a glass 13X9 pan.  Presentation is everything, right?)
Spoon the chicken mixture over the the coleslaw mix and top with green onion and Chow Mein noodles. Serve and enjoy! Now how easy was that?
If you want to make your own peanut sauce, here is my recipe:
Thai Peanut Sauce
Makes about 3/4 Cup
6 Tbsp. peanut butter
4 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 1/2 Tbsp. lime juice
2 Tbsp. sesame oil (you can sub olive oil or canola oil)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp. crushed red chili flakes
6 Tbsp. water
Mix it all together until it's smooth.  (I use a wire whisk.) 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014


Although the renovation of our new house is finished, I'm still putting on some final decor touches, most of which I will be making myself because buying and renovating a house sucks up all of your money.  I will say that I love my new home and every room inspires me to create. (Duh...kind of the goal, after all of that hard work,right?  I mean if I'm not inspired by my surroundings, I feel dead in the water, creatively.)  Speaking of water, since my master bedroom has a beachy theme, I made this wreath to hang on the wall over my about-to-be-painted dresser.  
My friend Natalie at NorthShore Days, in New Zealand, has always made me just a leetle bit jealous with all of her beach inspired decor and fabulous jewelry.  (I probably have more of her jewelry, than I do store-bought.)   Also my friend Del at Del's Shells, who is fortunate enough to live and play on the shores in Florida, blows me away with her cool beachiness.  And of course Tuula, at The Thrifty Rebel, who is always making wonderful wreaths. Thank you for the inspiration ladies!
I found this weird, wispy wreath on the clearance shelf at the tea room in Robins Vintage Suitcase sometime after Valentine's Day.  (Such a fun place to go!) It had a horrible red and white over-sized ribbon on it and looked like it needed a makeover. I almost passed it by, but then I realized it had great bones with all of that textural, wispy, driftwood-ness, so I rescued it from it's sad, clearance shelf life and threw it in a box for 5 months.
I cruised pinterest for some cool beach themed wreaths and liked this one.
I would love to give credit to whoever made this, but sadly, the pin didn't take me to any link.  (Always a good idea to watermark your pictures, eh?) Anyway....thank you, whoever you are for your inspiration.
I gathered up some found, purchased and gifted sea treasures.
I decided that the wreath was a little bit too wispy, so I gave it a trim.
Then I just attached them to my weird, less-wispy wreath with my trusty but lethal hot glue gun.
I cannot lie, it was incredibly fun and relaxing to just dream about the ocean and puzzle all of these beautiful sea treasures, gems and baubles on that wreath.  Here's an extreme close-up.....
I toyed with the idea of a ribbon, but the wreath seemed so busy that I dropped that idea rather quickly.
The colors in the wreath went perfectly with my blue bedroom walls.  This is my first time painting blue walls and I love waking up to these colors every morning!
I have oh-so-many more projects to share with you from this room, many of them inspired by some of your wonderful blogs.  When my friend Judy was here from Arizona twice during this renovation, we had great fun making many projects that can be adapted to any decor, and I'll be posting them soon. 
(By the way, Judy, I know that "less is more", but I just couldn't help putting more and then more shells on this wreath! LOL!)

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