Friday, August 29, 2014

The Friday Four Roundup {7}

1. Just say no to the ice bucket challenge, Matt Damon explains why. Many countries are without fresh water and here we are dumping it on our head just to see if we can challange our friends to look stupid too. If you really want to make a difference, just donate the money.

2. Ten supposed trending fashions for fall . However I would just say no to blanket coats, cropped pants, and can we PLEASE not go back to overalls?

3. Cute ideas for what to do with all the shells you collected this summer. I especially love the unique necklace idea.

4. What are you doing for your labor day weekend? We are participating in a parade this evening. Lots of sales going on, go check them out!

Enjoy your extended weekend ~ Rebecca

Monday, August 25, 2014

August Teacher Appreciation {Back to School Survival Kit}

It's Back to School time, and that means back to my Teacher Appreciation projects.

I got all the supplies at Walmart, in their back to school section. These pencil cases were 47 cents! I also picked up push pins, rubber bands, paper clips, and of course, chocolate.

I found the back to school survival kit printable tag {here}.

On the back of the tags I typed this:
This survival kit contains:
rubber bands, pins and paper clips
to help you “keep it together.”
In case of emergency:
break open chocolate.

Welcome back!

F R O M  T H E  P T O

And this is how it turned out:

Welcome back to school! Have a great week.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

No More Missing Socks {DIY Laundry Room Counter}

Hi everyone! It's Karen again. Thanks for having me back to post a project I just finished. So for a long, long time, pretty much since the day after we moved into our house 8 years ago, I have dreamed of a countertop over my washer and dryer in my laundry room. A couple of years ago, I redid the countertops throughout the house and I had a bit of laminate left over. It has been sitting in my attic as I have contemplated how in the world I was to make this project a reality. It's a really complicated project because my dryer gets hot and I need something that can easily be removed by a lady of my size alone when her man is busy bringing home the bacon. 

I had a 6 inch gap behind the dryer and the wall. 

And about a 2 inch gap on the side

So one day while I am discussing this problem of how to get the countertop over the washer and dryer to my friend Carol she says, "Hey, what if you use those really heavy duty shelf brackets?" What?!! Awesome! I had been trying to figure out wood along the back and sides and a pole down the middle for support. I found some brackets at a garage sale and they worked perfect. Can't beat $2 for those. 

They are all screwed into studs and are super sturdy.

Then I found a door.  A hollow core door with oak veneers on the exterior for $3 at my favorite thrift store. It didn't have a door knob hole in it and it was light weight. I trimmed it down to size (actually my man used the circular saw that's not my cup of tea). I had to re-build the door a bit with the pieces that were no longer supporting the edge. I added the oak trim along the face of it because it matches all the custom cabinetry in my house. I notched out the area for the water lines and where the plugs need to drop down through the back.

I used my router (thanks Dad) to bevel the front at a 45 degree angle also to match my house. Do you like my saw horses? Who knew two tall garbage cans are the perfect working height?

I wish I would have taken more pictures of putting the laminate on but the day I did, I put the contact cement on the laminate and the wood and just as it was about ready to stick them together, it started to rain and I was in a hurry. So just put your laminate on your wood by working one side to the other as to avoid big air bubbles, use a J roller (buy a nice one, and you will smile that you did) and roll the entire surface out. After that, don't leave it in the sun when you go to the pool - learned that this time. And yes it rained and was hot enough to go to the pool all in one day. I re-rolled the edge that was in the sun and then beveled the front with my 45 degree bit on my router. 

I then used the straight bit (thanks Carol) around the other edges and into my notches. Work slow and steady. Take your time otherwise the laminate can chip if you work too fast.

Ta da! Here we are! I love my countertop and am so excited not to use my BBQ tongs to have to reach all those missing socks!

Friday, August 22, 2014

The Friday Four Roundup: Back to School Edition {6}

My girls and I spent the first part of the week day in and out cleaning and organizing their space to get ready for the school year. There is so much more to getting ready than just fulfilling the school supply lists and buying new clothes and shoes! I was determined to complete everything on my wish list without spending any money and we succeeded.

1. An organized closet. Kids need to be able to see their clothes easily so they can put together their outfits every day and find things quickly. We are hoping to eliminate some of this stress by laying out our outfits the night before, but it starts here. We hang all shirts, skirts, dresses and coats/jackets. Pajamas, pants, tights, leggings, underwear, socks, hats, scarves and gloves go in the drawers. Shoes go on the closet floor (I have wire shoe racks coming in the mail from Home Depot, the only thing I bought and have been needing to get for a long time anyway). As a side note, toys go in bins, less frequently used and needing-supervision-toys go up, all other go under their bed. If it sounds like I cram alot into their closet and drawers, I don't. Kids don't need 50 of everything. Some of the best advice I ever got was from a friend who has 5 kids, 4 now teenagers, who told me a major way to simplify life, space, and laundry is to only have 8 shirts, and 4 pants per kid. We have a set for warm weather and cold weather and it has greatly reduced wasted time, money and effort caring for all that extra that we don't need. I only buy what I know they like and will wear. I had them go through everything- rack, drawers and bins- and get rid of anything they don't use or want, then put everything else away nice and organized. Another side note- on top of their dresser is the only space I had to give them a "shelf"- they each have a side and space to put their knick knacks and treasures and they appreciate having their "own space" to display and keep their special things.

2. Tidy homework station. Again, they each have their own space. Boards and clips I made to hang their art and whatnot and plastic drawers to keep their supplies.

3. A place for their backpacks. I'm pretty sure most moms dislike when everyone comes home and dumps their stuff everywhere and throw their backpacks on the floor. We had hooks in the hallway, but even with anchors, they were falling out and destroying the wall (I don't know WHAT they keep in their packs to make them so heavy!) So I took them down and patched the wall. I found some heavy duty over the door plastic hooks I had that weren't being used and the girls helped me decide where to put them. We decided to hang them over the foot of their beds because they are easy to reach and it holds them well.

4. Organized bathroom drawers. This might not be as big of a deal for boys, but for my girls, HAIR is probably the number one reason we are late to school! I asked my girls to empty the bathroom drawers and go through everything, getting rid of old or unused hair stuff. I let them organize it however they wanted with what we had. They decided they each wanted their own drawer and to divide everything up between the two of them. They also decided they would pick out their hair stuff and decide how they are going to wear it the night before along with their outfits in hopes of saving time in the morning and getting to school on time. I was so proud of them for coming up with this idea on their own and will definitely be encouraging them to follow through!

Bonus #5. Chore Charts Lastly, I printed up these free chore charts found {here}, to help keep us all on track!

Happy back to school season, everyone. Have a great weekend!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Quick Fix: Family Scrabble Letter Magnets {Organization Craft DIY}

In preparation for the kids going back to school, I decided I wanted to take advantage of the side of my fridge for a "command center." I love these magnetic clips, I've had a few that I bought since we got married and I decided I needed more of them so I could quickly hang up a bunch of school papers or whatnot at once, and that everyone in our family needs their own. (That's my idea of organization, ha!) I had a $5 off any purchase rewards thing from True Value so I went and bought 4 more magnets which ended up being free. I have a box of old scrabble tiles and plenty of hot glue, so I went to work!

I love 'em. And it cost me nothing. And now everyone has their own "spot" on the fridge. Triple win.

Happy Monday everyone! Our last week of Summer~

Thursday, August 14, 2014

The Friday Four Roundup {5}

1. We had a great time during our family reunion weekend. I had the chance to go on a hot date with my hubby (thanks, K) to a Brasilian restaurant called Tucano's. My favorite was the bacon wrapped filet minon, and THIS fancy drink, a Rio de Janerio which consists of cream and passion fruit. YUM! I'd never had one before.

2. I'm thinking about getting one of those 3M Command hooks for my front door wreath. The wreath hanger is scratching the paint. I went to their website and they have hooks meant for outdoor use that hold up to 5 pounds. Have you ever used one? I'm wondering how good they work. Anyway, if you are interested, they have a ton of coupons for their products you can print out {here}.

3. If you ever had leftover chocolate frosting you should put it on a graham cracker with some peanut butter. I did this the other day and my husband was like, what are you doing and why have I never seen this before? Cause it's super yum. Try it.

4. I'm kind of sad Summer is coming to an end (10 days till school!) but also ready for fall. I made this summer banner out of cardstock and washi tape a few months ago but never shared it so thought I should before it gets packed up next month.

Have a wonderful weekend. I have my sister in law and 5 nieces and nephews coming to visit, woot! Love the summer cousin bonding time!

Monday, August 11, 2014

How To DIY a Boys' Tie Out of a Mans' Tie {Tutorial}

I wanted my husband and son to have matching ties for a family picture so I found these lovelies (handsomies?) on clearance at Target. I bought two man ties.
Here is a tutorial on how to make a boys' tie from a mans' tie.

This is what I started with:
 Also, you will need: needle, thread, measuring tape and/or ruler, fabric scissors, iron and board, and elastic the length of the neck.

1. Measure on your boy where the tie normally sits at the top of his collar to your desired length. For us, it is about to the top of where he wears his pants, 12-13". You do not need to add length for a hem but you might want to cut extra just in case, and check as you go. The second tie piece will be about 2" shorter. Cut straight across.

2. Undo the stitching up the back of the first tie piece.

And down the sides just to before it angles.

3. Cut each side 1" and cut the inner (white) fabric 1/2" on each side.

4. Fold edges over inner fabric and press with iron on low or silk setting. Fold over first side, then iron a small hem on the other side about 1/4" and then iron over that side.

If the side is too long (as mine was), determine where it needs to be (about the middle) and cut more as needed.

5. Hand stitch together, it doesn't have to be tight, just to keep it in place. You can do a few, or do it all the way up, as I did.

6. Somehow I lost the picture, but next you pinch the tie at the top middle, making a "dimple"and stitch it in place.

7. Cut another piece from your tie, this is going to be the "knot" piece, rip the seam, remove the interfacing, and iron it flat. This is about 4" x 3".

8. Re-use the interfacing and place it back in your fabric. I ironed the fabric over it leaving about 1/4" extra on each side between the white and the fold to get it the size I wanted for my knot.

9. Fold the fabric at an angle and press. You can determine where to start the fold at the bottom by holding the top of your tie here and folding over it. This is the back of the knot.

10. Unfold and at the top of the pressed fold line, fold down the edges and put a little stitch to hold it in place. This keeps the edges tucked so they aren't longer than the top when you fold it in. Do this on both sides.

11. Unfolding the bottom of the knot piece, stitch the bottom front knot piece to the front top tie piece, right sides together, just over where you stitched the dimple.
  12. Fold back the knot piece then stitch down the top and sides, being careful not to stitch through to the front of the tie.

13. Measure, cut and stitch your elastic to the back of the knot. I stitched it 1/2" from the top but I should have stitched it at the top. I figured out the length of my elastic by having my son put on his white collared shirt then putting the elastic around his neck where it would go under the collar. We have no trouble stretching the elastic over his head to his collar. If this doesn't work for you, you can cut the elastic in the back or make pieces from left over fabric and sew velcro to the backs.

14. I like to put a little stitch to keep the front and back tie pieces together so the back stays in place.

And then you're done!

He's SO exited to have a big boy tie that matches daddy's!

Linked to

Friday, August 8, 2014

The Friday Four Roundup {4}

1. We cheated and made our fall favorite, pumpkin bread. Yes, I know it is still a good month until Autumn begins. We made some "Pumpkin Pie" Croc pot oatmeal from a recipe I got off pinterest (that was disgusting by the way #pinterestFAIL) but it left us with a half can of pumpkin puree so what's a girl to do? My daughter had the cute idea of using their little metal loaf pan from their play set of dishes so they could have thier own little loaf. And we still had enough for two big loaves. YUM and I'm almost ready for fall :)

2. We are getting ready to go on a road trip. There are tons of great ideas on pinterest for helping everyone survive. I found some {here}.

3. The road trip is so we can go do a family reunion. Fun times! Here is a great article with some helpful ideas on building unity in family reunions {here}.

4. Take a look at this cuteness I created! (the tie, not the boy, although he's pretty dang cute too.) Tutorial to come...

Have a fabulous weekend! ~ Rebecca