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Saturday, October 27, 2012

My Newest Hobby:
I've been having lots of fun making a total mess of my kitchen in order to send my girls to school with extra adorable lunches. You can get lots of great supplies for really cheap at this great store called Daiso.
Above is my bento version of potato salad. 
You can get lots of other great ideas from Google or Pinterest and there is sure to be a few more here every now and then.

Monday, October 8, 2012

 DIY Chalk Boards

For this project you'll need your board (I found mine super cheap at Goodwill but I hear they are also affordable at Hobby Lobby), a sponge paintbrush, a sponge paint roller, paint - acrylic and wall paint both work, non-sanded tile grout.

Mix 2 oz. or 1/4 cup paint with 1 1/2 tsp non-sanded grout. Stir it up until it's almost smooth (it will remain a little gritty). It will stink a little, kinda like a perm so do it outside if you can or in a well ventilated areal.

Glob it on your board - or just paint it. Pouring it this way is just a little faster, but potentially more messy too.

Smooth your paint out evenly, but leave it a little thick on the board.

Gently roll the sponge roller over the board in one direction until the paint is smooth. 
(Learn from my fail: If your board has edges like these paint them first)

Optional step: I painted a boarder on top that included my kids names and made them unique from the others.

Last staple a ribbon to the back. A staple gun would be your best option, but if you don't have one (like I don't) a regular stapler will do the trick. Just be sure to hold it steady and use lots of pressure straight down.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Four Day Project

Last week my oldest daughter was away on a school trip. I thought this would be the prefect time to surprise her and take on a project I'd been dreaming about for months: Making a reading nook for her and her two siblings.
We have this neat little area under our stairs with two doors. Up until now this has been my craft closet. Sadly, this was just not working...

By the time all my storage bins were in there I couldn't really get to anything. I tried reorganizing several times, but always it would return to this very sad state within a few months. Like I said, not working

So first thing I had to do was empty this mess out, reorganize it, and put it NEATLY in its new home. So this is pretty much how I spent the entire morning of the first day. {Sigh of relief that's over}

So here it is empty. Still pretty sad...

We wanted to keep the white parts white for the most part so I scrubbed them with my magical dawn+vinegar solution. Then we taped  off the edges and puttied and primed.

Day two I took a little break and went shopping with my sister. I bought an awesome pillow for the project, and made two others. I also purchased my paint - "Banana Peel" 

I love our "Banana Peel" choice. The bright color helps the small space to feel a bit bigger. The bookshelves are some we had standing around collecting dust, and the things on them were purchased at the Dollar Tree (keeping things affordable).
I painted the tins with spray paint I had on hand and painted the labels on with left over paint from the chalk board project.

I hung the chalkboards and used a dab of poster putty to secure them to the walls so they can be drawn on.

I still need to add a lamp (using battery press lights for now) and I need get the door knob back on that door. But it's good enough for the kids to enjoy for now. 

My daughter was thrilled with her surprise when she got home and now the girls are fighting over who should sleep under the stairs next. They've moved in a healthy dose of books already too.

So much better than the embarrassing "Monica's Secret Closet" it was!