January 2014 archive

More Wall Fun

For your Friday fun, I thought I would show you a small wall change and a living room update.

I showed you last week my brass wall art (see here) in my living room.  I have also changed around my furniture since you last saw it.

I like to change the layout of my home.  For me, it’s a breath of fresh air.  It helps reset your mind and keeps things from becoming mundane.  The Mr. thinks it may be an illness. I say it is just the result of having a creative brain.

Here is what I’ve done.  I moved the couches around because I hauled in the coffee table from a neighboring room.  I also finally hung some pictures on the wall on each side of the hutch I have in the room.

Here is what it looked like before when it was empty.  Remember this was one of the only rooms in the house I did not paint?  I’m still deliberating on if I should paint it or not…

Living Room Before

Living Room Before

The previous furniture arrangement can be seen here.

And what it looks like now-

Living Room Update

Living Room Update

Now here it is what I put on the wall-

Mirror Wall Art

Mirror Wall Art

2014-01-31_09-23-30_344

This little number is also a recent addition to the room.  After the Christmas tree came down, I just didn’t have the heart to put it back in its place.  So here is where it ended up. I have big paint plans for this little gem but haven’t gotten it accomplished yet.  Don’t get too attached to that dark wood and brass maple pulls!

Sofa Table

Sofa Table

Happy Friday!

 

Colors for the Closet

I have been hoarding all of my Instyle color crash course feature articles to post in my closet for some time now.  But I just hadn’t gotten around to hanging anything to display them.

What was the color crash course?  You may remember my post on them here.  Basically Instyle would create outfits based around a specific hue and then also provide other color options to coordinate with that color.

And I love them.  They help so much when getting dressed in the morning!

I decided that I would move a bulletin board into the closet so I could pin all of these lovely pages right on my closet wall.  It’s old school Pinterest!

Here she is going up-

Bulletin Board Up

Bulletin Board Up

And fully loaded-

Colors Up And Ready

Colors Up And Ready

It’s hard to get a good side closet shot!  I grouped them by color.  So all the yellows are together, I just have to flip through the pin to find what shade I’m looking for, etc.

Here’s the best full on shot I could get in-

Close Up Shot

Close Up Shot

I could just write all these down, but visuals are much easier.

Oh to be so organized in the mornings!

Children’s Books

I have a little library for the kids in our home.  I can’t tell you how much those books mean to me.  I don’t know how I’ll ever be able to get rid of any of them.  We have everything from Baby Faces and Thomas the Train to Pinkalicious and I’ll Love You Forever.  Each one of them is treasured because of the memories I have reading them to the kids.

If you can’t tell, I’m a bit of a bookworm myself.  I heard once that the reading that you do as a child becomes a part of you like no other reading will.  And if that’s true, then I’m a part of Trixie Belden, Bobbsey Twins, Ramona Quimby, Nancy Drew, Little House on the Prairie, Anne of Green Gables and the Babysitters Club.  All of these books mean so much to me too. In fact, I still own many of the books I read as a child.  Some of the sets I’ve picked up along the way at auctions and library book sales, but I’m hoping my kids will read and enjoy many of these same books.

As any good book lover will tell you, book collections can get out of control really fast.  And my bookshelves are no exception!  I know all of you techies out there are yelling at the screen, get a Kindle!  Use your iPad!  But I just can’t go there.  Nor do I want my kids to miss out on what it means to fall asleep with a book in their hands or not to know the smell of a bookstore.  Books are just homey.

All of this is leading to organization, I promise!

I’ve been trying to organize my bookshelves lately, but it’s just one of those projects I keep putting off.  I have most of the kids’ books organized (or have tried- I’d rather have them reading them than have them perfect!) but I don’t have my own collections out and ready to read.

Here’s what my bookshelf looked like before-

Bookshelves Before

Bookshelves Before

Just a hodge-podge of stuff, really.

And here is what it looked like after I added in my favorite childhood books-

Bookshelves After

Bookshelves After

Yes!  That really is an old school TV!  They do still exist!

I know this isn’t earth-shattering but I’m so happy to have them out and accessible.  For another generation to love.

 

Just a Small Thing

In my process of trying to organize post-Christmas, the yearly task of writing in birthdays on the new calendar was as appealing as cleaning out the refrigerator.  You know you should do it but want to avoid it as long as possible.

While perusing Pinterest one day, I came across a fabulous idea to make a craft and put our family birthdays onto it so we can have them up and around no matter the year.  And as everyone in my family knows, I’m terrible at remembering birthdays.  I can barely remember the dates my own children were born, let alone anyone else’s.  So if I get around to sending a card or a gift in the same season as their official birthday, it’s a success.

I’m holding out all hope that this little craft may help me be a little more proactive in the birthday department….

I’m going to show you the final product and give you the instructions afterwards.  Because I had an epic fail trying to take pictures of the process.

Here she is-

Birthday Calendar

Birthday Calendar

I started with an empty picture frame (no glass, nothing!).  I strung some twine across it. I conveniently tied the twine where there were staples to hold in the picture, but some were missing and I had to tie those ends around the outside until I can add staples.  I purchased some plastic smaller sized clothespins from the Dollar Store which I intend to….spray paint! Or cover in twine.  Or fabric.  Something.  Because I just don’t appreciate them in all their plasticky primary colorness.  (Those are all real words.)

And then I went to work on creating the paper months.  First I found a printable to use for each month, printed it and cut those out with a pretty edge.  Then I found some bits of scrap paper to use on the edges for a border.  Then I tried to add a little shape to go with each month.  So far I have yet to figure out August….?

All that was left was to fill it in with birthdays (in pencil!) and to hang it up.  Here it is with some of my kids artwork-

Wall art

Wall art

In one glance, I can see who all has birthdays in what month.  Success!

 

Blizzard Relief

Yikes!  It is really blowing here.  With school called off again for tomorrow and visibility down to a few yards, not even a mile, I’ll have both the kiddos and the Mr. home tomorrow.  This throws off not only my plans for the week but also theirs.

Maybe it’s God’s plan.  Maybe he wants us to have some extra together time tomorrow. I don’t know.  What I do know is that many of us are really tired of January.

So here’s some ideas on keeping the kiddos entertained with the intent they won’t play video games ALL day long:

1)  Start the kids on their Valentine’s.  Every year it takes a painstakingly long time for them to write their names on all their classmates Valentine’s.  This should give them a good half hour project, depending on their ages.  This is, of course, after homework and Book-It reading.

2)  Back our cars out of the garage and let the kids ride their scooters and/or roller blades to burn off extra energy.  This is after they run laps in the house and start wresting each other.

3)  Bring out some toys from Christmas they’ve already forgotten.

4) Make the “world’s longest” race/train track (perhaps also in the garage).

5) Set up a grocery store on the steps with play food and some lists and a cash register with money.

6) Build a fort out of chairs and blankets to leave up all day.

7) Play spies by setting up Nerf gun targets in the empty garage and masking tape laser beam traps.

8) Create a scavenger hunt for them around the house using a movie or book they like as the theme.

9) Let them bake cookies.  And with the exception of putting hot pans in and out of the oven, let them do it all by themselves by reading the recipe.

10) Take a group nap.

And for myself?  Well, after I catch up on Downton Abbey, I’ll do chores, chores, chores. Because the laundry and dishes are never-ending tasks.  And then I’m going to do a little organizing. Which is what the theme of the week is here on Style from the Sticks.  And later, perhaps invite friends over for dinner and a card game.

That’s my plan.  In this blizzard, keep yourself safe and sane!

BSS- Post Workout Hair

The agenda today.  What to do with your hair after a workout?

I try to wash my hair every other day.  Sometimes I can make it three days but it isn’t pretty.  This cycle is considerably thrown off when you add in a couple of hard workouts.  Between the sweat and the dirt, it makes for some pretty bad hair days.

The solution?  Well, according to Fitness Magazine, spraying your hair with hair gel and blow drying the sweat out.  Has anyone tried this?  I gotta say, the thought of putting gel into my sweaty hair isn’t appealing.  I think I found something better.

It’s a special formula of dry shampoo.  You know I love Sauve’s version but mainly that’s due to the price, availability and because with my blonde hair, the white powder doesn’t show so badly. Read more on that here.  This dry shampoo doesn’t leave any of that whiteness and feels more like a very fine gel in the hair.

This is it-

Pantene Dry Shampoo Root Reboost

Pantene Dry Shampoo Root Reboost at Walgreens $7.99

To use, simply apply to your sweaty hair after it is somewhat dried.  (I mean, nothing is going to take out drips.)  And brush through!  I think this stuff works wonderfully and makes the thought of gel seem stiff and a little 80s.

Does it save your hair after a sweaty workout?  It gets my vote.

 

Brass Wall Grouping

Nothing earth shattering today.  I’ve slowly collected a mix of circular wall art in brassy colors.  And I’ve been wondering what to do with them.  I think I finally found the spot- on either side of my living room doorway.

Have you heard that brass is back in?  I’m not sure what to think about that yet.  I mean, ten years ago everyone was throwing it out the window.  And, it does remind me a little of my grandma’s house.  The reason these babies haven’t gotten a good dose of spray paint?  I’ve just been too lazy.  But I have to admit, I’m not hating it.  It will take me a little convincing to go back to the shiny bright brass.

Here’s what they look like-

Clock and Corkboard

Clock and Corkboard

Mirrors

Mirrors

Doorway

Doorway

 

 

I especially love how they carry the theme across the room’s opening.

Here’s an article from a blogger I love regarding brass-

http://thedecorologist.com/decorating-trends-back-in-brass

Are you on board with brass?  Or does the whole thing scare you?

Chalkboard Cabinet

I am forever writing lists of things i need to accomplish.  A list for the day, a list for items that need to be done whenever, lists for house projects.  Lots of lists.  And it gets really tiresome to find lists all over the house.

Due to the popularity of chalkboard paint and how much I love it, I had an idea of making a chalkboard wall.  Except that I really didn’t know where I wanted to put it.  I liked the thought of making the side of one of my cabinets all chalkboard because it seemed a great place to be able to write out all of my “to-dos” at least for the day.  But I really wasn’t too excited about painting the cabinet,

Instead, I found a piece of chalkboard vinyl on Amazon that came in almost the exact dimensions that I needed.  Obviously it was intended to be used horizontally, but I turned it and made it follow the entire cabinet length.

Here’s what it looks like-

Chalkboard Wall

Chalkboard Wall

it was fairly easy to apply and I hope that it lasts.  I’m very excited about having lists so visible and easy to update!

Basement Curtain Solution

It is back to reality now that it is midweek.

I’ve been busy at home since I pretty much couldn’t go anywhere else.  So for the last few days this week, I thought I’d share some of the creating I’ve done (this mind never sits still).

For today, it’s a little project I did in the basement.  I’ve had these curtains that I’ve been wanting to hang for a while now.  They aren’t actually for a window but because I have a big blank wall down there that I wanted to cover (and make look like there are more windows). But hanging curtain rods wasn’t something I was willing to do.  My solution?  Using old pinch-pleat curtain hooks to attach to both the curtain and the drop ceiling track.

Here’s what it looks like-

Basement curtain solution

Pinch-pleat hooks; Curtain hangers

And here is the final product-

Curtains Hung

Curtains Hung

So here is the before-

Empty Room

Empty Room

And here’s the after-

Curtains with Couch

Curtains with Couch

I have some work yet to do on these so that my kids leave them alone.  🙂  I need to figure a way to keep them attached to the hook.  Perhaps a small piece of cork…?  But for now, they are up!

 

 

 

Here’s the Deal

I know I disappeared on you.  I have only the following explanations.

#1 The Mr. came down with the flu.  As in influenza.  As in, went to the doctor, diagnosed, on Tamiflu.  The whole deal.  I’ve spent the weekend in a cloud of Lysol and my hands are forming layers of crusts due to hand sanitizer.  I hope he gets to feeling better soon.

#2 My Twitter account was hacked.  Totally not cool to be “following” a bunch of people I have never requested to follow.  Anywho, hopefully I’ll get it resolved.

#3  There was a day of beautifulness outside and now…it is snowing and travel isn’t advised.  Back to dreariness.  I’m in serious need of vitamin D.

None of the above were planned and my routine has been thrown.  I hope to return to normal ASAP.

Thank you for your patience!

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