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Friday, November 13, 2009

Ahhh, Babies

A lot of my favorite DIY bloggers are pregnant. I find this amusing because it's such ancient history for me. My children, usually referred to as The Teen Minions or The Love Spawn, are pretty self-sufficient at this point. The oldest even recently told me he's an adult. Yeah right. As I hand him his allowance.

But since the Hubster and I have managed to get them to this point in one piece with no criminal record, I thought I'd share some parental pearls with whomever is bored enough to click and read this.

First, the Top Ten Things You Think You'll Never Do Once The Baby Arrives!

1. The first time your baby sleeps through the night, you WILL wake at some point and in a panic hold a mirror under that squishy little nose.

2. You WILL take the carrier into the bathroom with you for the first couple of days. God only knows what you think will happen to the baby if you leave him alone while you pee.

3. You WILL suddenly find your chic decor over run by bright plastic things that smile back and make noises.

4. You WILL have nothing decorative in your home lower than seven feet. There are two kinds of items in a home with children: things that belong to the baby, and things the baby can't get to.

5. You WILL marvel at the fact that you've been wearing the same pajamas for two weeks. 24 hours a day.

6. You WILL banish the word "spontaneous" from your vocabulary. Spontaneous will now require a ton of planning.

7. You WILL realize how good you look in a ponytail. And you will no longer wonder why so many moms have short hair.

8. You WILL pick someone else's nose.

9. You WILL end up with a diaper full of Cheez Whiz exploding all over your dress two minutes before you are planning to walk out the door no matter what kind of diapers you use or what the manufacturer promises.

10. You WILL be amazed at how in love you are with this tiny person who just took over your life. Because you may think you knew what love was, but this is the most profound, consuming, unbelievable stuff ever.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Center of Attention

Inspiration is a funny thing.

Since a lot of my Christmas decorations were slow roasted on an open flame, I'll be going minimalist this year, but as always, I want noteworthy, I want a theme, and I want....


The centerpiece that caught my eye in the homestore was tall, elegant, white, and could be wrangled into the decor of any season. It was also $80. That sooooo wasn't happening.

A little trot to the garden center of Home Depot yielded a tall slim clay pot and a clay bowl that fit together very nicely. I slathered on a generous bead of Gorilla Glue, positioned them together, and let it dry over night. Then it was out to my rickety project table for four coats of Rustoleum Gloss White. Once that dried, it looked nearly ceramic.

I took another package of white and silver frosted garland snagged at Big Lots last year for 90% off and just draped it along the rim of the large bowl. I found a hurricane in my decorating cabinet thant fit perfectly, added a tall white pillar candle, and then surrounded the hurricane with a bag of clear and white frosted marbles.

The Budget News:

Tall slim pot: $1.98

Large bowl: $4.98

Spray paint: $2.97

Glass marbles: $1.97

Garland: $0.40

Pillar candle: $4

Totally Cool Receipt: $16.30

That's a FAR cry from the $80 one I fell in love with, and that would have just been the bowl. We light candles for dinner every night, so this has had a test run, and the sparkle factor was perfect. Now for the rest of the holiday ambience...

Sunday, November 8, 2009

I Did Threaten...

When I did the green wreath, I did threaten to do a silver one for the holidays. I already had all of the stuff to do this one too!

A thick coat of silver later, I had the festive base of something that really didn't really need a lot of embellishment, so once it dried, I dug out a package or garland that I bought 90% off after Christmas last year and just twisted it into the grapevine. I added a wire loop to the back, and once Thanksgiving has passed, it will grace my front door.

Did I mention that a lot of my Christmas decorations were in THAT room?

The Budget News:

Wow. $0.40 worth of garland. SCORE!

Party Like a Rock Star

Remember I mentioned I had used hot pink ball fringe on my daughter's lampshades? I had noticed the fringe was a little loose the last time I mustered up enough courage to venture into her room, so while the glue gun was hot, I asked her to bring the shade down for some repairs.

Those little pink shades were so water damaged.

And let's be honest, the chipper candlestick lamps that were perfect when she was 5 were a little babyish a decade later.

Two stops: Walmart for more of those $3 clearance shades, gloss black spray paint, and some great shiny purple fringe by the yard.

During lunch, I ran over
to A.C. Moore for a card

of 3 dimensional chipboard stickers.

I know you see where this is going.

First, we hot glued the fringe to the outside of the shades, working 4 to 6 inches at a time. I started at the seam in the middle of the back of the shades and overlapped it just slightly at the ends.

Next, Savannah wrapped the lamp works in plastic cling wrap and taped the cords. We treated them to 3 light coats of black gloss spray paint, letting it dry between coats.

We thought about watching the paint dry, but Savannah prefers to watch grass grow, and....hey! Look! Shiny!

Anyway, while that dried, it was time to apply the stickers. These are sturdy and come ready to peel off and use. I let my daughter handle the artistic part. She pressed them into position, supporting the shade with her other hand from the back.

And there you have it: two lamps worthy of an angst-y teen girl!

The Budget News:

2 lamp shades on Walmart clearance: $6
2 yards of fringe at $2.83 per yard: $5.66
1 can of paint: $2.97
1 card of stickers: $5
Totally Cool Receipt: $19.63

The sheepish little smile on my secretly pleased daughter's face was worth it.