Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Recovering a Lamp Shade

Fair Warning: Not all lamp shades are created the same. Take some time to study your lampshade's assembly and figure out how to disassemble it.

That being said - this was sooo much easier than I thought it would be.

First, peel off the edging and set it to the side. Then carefully peel the fabric off the plastic shade base.

Lay the old shade fabric on top of the new fabric. Move it around until you have the pattern you want. Trace and cut it out, leaving yourself around 1/4" around the edges (you'll trim it later).

Spray some adhesive on the back of the new shade fabric and secure to the plastic shade base. Be careful to line it up right, it can be a little tricky.

Now heat up the glue gun (or get out the fabric glue). While that heats, trim the excess (if any) from around the top and bottom of the shade. Turn the edge of the vertical seam under a little bit and secure with glue.

Now get out the edge trim that you set aside. If you are using new trim, use the old trim as a cutting guide. I reused the same trim, though I considered using a coordinating bias tape. Glue the trim along the top and bottom edges, folding under the ends.
Let it cool/dry, and put your spiffy "new" shade to use!

Cost: $5 for the original shade, $2 in fabric

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Projects for Max's Room

before/during
Up until recently, Max's room suffered a case of the blah's was very neutral. Light yellow walls, white trim, white or light furniture - a blank palette. I've had the vision of what I wanted his room to look like since he was born, but it's taken a while to collect/make all of the pieces.

Like the fish lamp - love the lamp, hate the shade. I thought's I'd love the shade, but not so much. So I recovered it! (tutorial tomorrow) I got some great shelves, but they needed sprucing - enter spray paint! The curtain material is fantastic, but needed to coordinate with the pops of blue - why not some ribbon!

You have probably figured it out, but I'll be showing you the little details of his room and how I spruced it up (on the cheap) to take it from a blank palette to a vibrant room for a little boy.

after!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Cookie Presentation

Sometimes it's all about presentation. I needed to jam arrange two dozen cookies in a tart pan to bring in to work for a birthday. After stacking in various ways (round cookies are not efficient stackers) I decided to go on edge.
The added bonus is the cup of milk that fit nicely in the center.

See the recipe here!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Temporarily Busy...

It's crazy busy the next couple of weeks - so fair warning my posts might be sporadic. I'll get back on top of things soon!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

My father got crocs so he could be just like Max.


(I swear I didn't stage this, Max set his crocs right next to Papa's)

Monday, August 13, 2012

House on the Hill (more pool hole)

Our house sits on the top of a hill. Or, rather, at the top of a valley/ravine. Good for spying on zombies/incoming attackers and avoiding floods, bad for swing sets.

However, you may have heard me talk about the pool hole. Just a little bit. I've hated that pool hole for a good, long time when I had a major light bulb moment - turn it into a play yard! It's already level, has a good, packed sand base, and is 25' in diameter, perfect!

To give you an idea of how it fits in the back yard, here's a fun diagram:


I have plans, more on those later...

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Diet Update

20 pounds and almost two pant sizes down and (slowly) dropping! Woot!

I celebrated with a new pair of pants and a few shirts (all steeply on sale, of course).

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Filing SCORE!

One of the best thrift store finds I've ever had, and I got it for a quarter:

image source
(no, that's not mine, that's the company's pretty photo)

There are so many articles and tips out there on how to organize paper and keep it off the dining table. For a lot of people, their paper piles up as mail. Me, I open the mail just fine and recycle most of it - but the paperwork that I need to file (bills, etc) gets put in a pile on top of the printer which sits on top of a little desktop shelving unit.
my fancy filing tote

The printer that we haven't used in five years.

Ugh.

After thinking long and hard about it, I realized that I will only put paper in folders if the folders are easy to see and access. The dusty tote at the bottom of the closet prior filing system was obviously not working, as evidenced by my complete lack of filing (for three years).

Enter: that desktop organizer. I just knew it would revolutionize my papery life, and for .25 cents it was meant to be.

Of course that desktop organizer has been sitting on the living room floor for about two weeks while I shamelessly avoided the ridiculous mess did more important things, but last night I sucked it up and completely cleared the printer area. The printer and a few other things went into the yard sale box, the shelf got set to the side for another use, and I set up the organizer. The hanging files that we use the most often immediately went in, and I'll add others as needed.

The bottom tray now holds that pile of to-do filing (which I was barely able to shove in there) and the top tray holds some scratch paper, five rolls of tape (no, I don't know why we have so many), and our double deck of playing cards.

This, I can handle.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Destructo-Gardening - the Pool Hole Part 1

I'd mentioned a while back that I'd hired a landscaper to come and do some demo in the yard to remove the pool hole, a flower bed, and pull some fence posts. Well, that was mid-April and it's still not done but I haven't figured out how to gracefully exit the agreement since it's a family friend... So, I'm doing a lot of the work myself.

Sometimes you must destruct to build anew. Bwahaha!

Mission: Pool Hole

Once upon a time, there was an above ground pool. Grandchildren splashed and played. Then new homeowners came along and didn't clean the pool for a while. Ew. Enter myself and hubby and a house contract that includes the removal of the yucky pool. Leaving us with a sloped yard with a 25' round, level dent filled with packed sand. I had visions of a knot garden, lots of herbs, etc.

Fast forward three years, pregnancy, child, and lots of weeds.

Well, my work was cut out for me. I don't normally like to use weed killer, but sometimes it's the best option. I sprayed the whole area, let it sit for a week and a half, then on a hot Saturday during nap time I went to work.

That's a pretty intense before, huh? I considered bothering my aunt to borrow her heavy duty brush whacker, but I needed to sweat, and pulling up from the roots is better than leaving potentially viable roots in the ground. I don't know if you can tell, but most of those weeds are as tall as I am if not taller (5'1"). Lots of cattails and goldenrod. And some sort of nasty fluffy looking grass that cut the poop out of my arms.

Fast forward an hour and lots of pulling, and we have this:
That's all of the weeds, pulled up and waiting for the wheelbarrow, yay!

Another hour of raking and dumping brush (and a tree that got cut down and tossed in there) out back, followed by a pass with the lawnmower set on low... and it's a big, sandy, stubbly circle, 25' across.

Woo-hoo! Ready for phase two (aka a layer of compost and topsoil, currently being negotiated on with the farm down the street). Phase three is being designed... and will involve a garden and a swing set!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Garden Envy - Montreal Botanical Garden

There are definitely gardens that you should be envious of - and the Montreal Botanical Garden is one of them. Hubby took me on a date there earlier in the month (a date that involves travel is one serious date).

We were there for four hours and 12 minutes and didn't see all of it - we bypassed the arboretum and the lilacs (which had gone by of course) and only glanced at the roses. I could spend days there... I was so overloaded with inspiration that we'd been driving for at least an hour on the way home before I could start gushing.

Here's some eye candy for you!


yours truly, feeling at home (I miss Poway)





shade plants + hubby = twice the eye candy