Home is Where the Heart Is…

They say “Home is Where the Heart Is” and I couldn’t agree more, and that’s why I’m so embarrassed to admit that it took me over 3 years to hang more than just mirrors on the walls in our living room/dining room. Pretty sad huh?! Well call it motivation to prepare for our little miss’ birthday party but I finally finished decorating the walls in our living room. Hooray!! (Insert small applause!)

I guess the problem lies in the fact that because I love design, decorating, home décor, etc….I have a tendency to want to change our decorations frequently. So I was having a hard time ‘committing’ to a design style. Once I finished the DIY projects I completed for our living room and it has now had about two months to marinate, I’m beginning to rethink how I want to redecorate our living room. I know, I know…don’t worry I won’t do it just yet. I’ll do my best to wait until we move into another house (hopefully sometime in the next year or two!). Getting back to my DIY projects…

Gallary Wall

I have been looking on Pinterest for ideas on how I want to create some DIY projects for our living room, and found a lot of ideas on how to make a gallery wall. Sorry in advance for my obsession with Pinterest! I have been collecting pieces that I have wanted to use from a variety of places. I had two pictures that I already knew I wanted to use, a letter initial I picked up at Hobby Lobby, a mirror from Target, a print that I ordered online and the DIY project that I made for the hubby’s first Father’s Day! Through trial and error and a vary patient hubby that is in charge of hanging stuff in our house (I always hang things crooked!), we got the combo we liked. I love it!

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Now that we finally got something on the huge wall in our living room, it was time to finally complete the two canvases on either side of our front window. I have to shamefully admit that I have left these canvases hanging on the wall as blank reminders of my inability to commit to a design style for about five months or so…sad, yes I know. I decided to paint them an abstract pattern design to go with my eclectic global style.

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They didn’t take as long as I anticipated, for the chevron-like pattern I kind of ‘winged it’ and didn’t like how it initially turned out so I played with adding some chalk to it and liked the results much better!

Bird Painting

For the leaf-like pattern I cut out a stencil out of cardstock paper and traced the stencil over and over again with a pencil. I then painted each outline with the same grey paint I used for the other one. I enjoyed the results with adding the chalk to the other so much that I decided to add chalk to this canvas as well. I love this one better! I think the chalk adds some dimension to the patterns, what do you think?

Leaf Painting

Now that I had (finally!) completed hanging stuff on the walls in our living room, the stark white doors in our kitchen that house our washer and dryer (I’m pretty sure our 90’s era house was designed by a man….washer/dryer in the kitchen, really??!) just looked too plain. So I decided to add a couple of more canvases, why not!

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The one of the left I usually like to do a design for the season, it’s so fun…I love it! I had this one up by its lonesome for a while, but it looked unbalanced. So I added the other two. The top one is corkboard glued to a canvas that proved to be a handy home for the 6+ wedding invitiations we had to keep track of in May. (See my post: “Tis the Season for…Love” for more info!). The bottom one has an original bird created by yours truly and I usually use it to keep track of random groceries that I had a hard time remembering when I would make my grocery list. Pretty clever, yes I know!~ Just as a side note, the large canvas on the left I used chalkboard spray paint to cover the canvas and the bottom right one I just used black acrylic paint…they are literally the same! They have the same effect and the chalk cleans off of the same as well. So, my advice is to save your money and just use acrylic spray paint/paint when covering a canvas you plan to use as a chalkboard!

Hope you have as much fun creating DIY projects as I do and that this has inspired you to create some of your own!

 

Cheers!

Mel

Oh My…It’s a Minnie Mouse 1st Birthday Party!

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After months of thought and planning, our little miss celebrated her first birthday with a vintage Minnie Mouse party! I decided to save some money and make almost everything we had at her party by hand…decorations, cake, food, desert bar, etc! By doing this I came to a harsh realization…I am not Martha! Granted she has a whole team of people who plan and execute the beautiful parties that she “effortless” creates. The same parties that make a first time mommy think that she can also “effortlessly” create by hand. I personally blame Martha and Pinterest for creating unrealistic expectations on how easy making everything by hand can be. At least I like to tell myself this when I am still up at 2 am making party decorations by hand! Nevertheless, I think I created a beautiful 1st birthday party that even Walt Disney would be proud of! (Again, something I have to tell myself!).

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The day of the party got off to a rocky start due to the unpredictable weather in this area in June! We had rain, thunder, lightening, and hail…oh my! Luckily, the weather cleared out and it turned out to be a hot and very humid morning. Fortunately, by the time the party started we didn’t have any more rain and the sun made its appearance, so I can’t complain too much. We had a great turnout, we had our wonderful friends come out and show their love and support for our little (not so little anymore, sad!) girl and most of our amazing family came as well!

We had a buffet bar set up so people could enjoy the yummy food as they pleased and a drink station with lavender lemonade and raspberry lemonade. A little tip, I put lavender sprigs and raspberries in the ice cubes so they wouldn’t clog the spout on the beverage servers and you would still get the flavor and pretty aesthetics… it worked great! Decorating the food table proved to be kinda tricky, but I improvised and made napkin bows to decorate the table. I think it worked pretty well!

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I also made a dessert table with treat bags, so people could take home the yummy treats with them. It had Mickey Mouse animal crackers (Thank you Costco!), frosted circus animal crackers, strawberry milkshake whoppers with gumballs, and cake pops. Everyone seemed to enjoy the dessert table and the delightful treats! Just a little tip, if you are planning to make cake pops for your next party…plan for them to eat up about 3 hours or so and buy extra candy melts. I had to learn the hard way, its a pretty labor intensive process but they turned out adorable…so they were worth the headache!

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Last but not least, what 1st birthday wouldn’t be complete without a smash cake! For anyone who doesn’t have kids or aren’t around little ones, the smash cake is were the birthday girl/boy gets to make a total mess of themselves and eat lots of cake. It’s pretty cute! Our little miss has a dairy allergy, so I had to be really careful picking out a cake mix (I debated making a cake from scratch but knew it would take to much time), so she got treated to my favorite cake…Red Velvet! I decorated it all cute with pink frosting and cut out the cake decorations with an edible sheet. This was a pretty nifty find, apparently they make an edible decorating sheet so you can cut out the decoration of your choice (I found it at Walmart!)! I was pretty pleased with my creation and put it in the freezer so it wouldn’t melt before our little miss dug into it. Unfortunately I didn’t think it would freeze the cake to an almost solid when she was ready to dig into it. Oops…lesson learned!  It worked out better though, less mess for her to get into!

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All in all, I think it turned out to be an adorable birthday party that even Minnie herself would have wanted to attend!

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Cheers!

Mel

DIY Projects – Mother’s Day/Father’s Day

As I promised in my Mother’s Day post, I (with the help of my sister and cousin) had planned some fun DIY gifts for the special parents in our lives. For our Stepmom, we wanted to create something fun that she could put on display that was also a keepsake momento. Well we started brainstorming, and searching Pinterest for an idea and found a cute stepstool that someone had created with children’s footprints on it. So we took this idea and ‘ran with it’, and created a cute and fun “Nana’s Little Helper’s” stool. It turned out very cute and of course it just had to be coral, my Stepmom’s favorite color! (If it looks a little odd with just

Nana Stool

For my Mom, my sister and I wanted to make a DIY project as well! She always likes gifts we make better than ones we buy, must be a mom thing! So we decided to take a wooden plaque and put our handprints on it in the shape of a heart and our little one’s handprints over the top of ours. It turned out adorable!

Mom

For my Dad, we wanted to make something DIY as well but wanted to include a spiritual aspect as well. I found a saying on Pinterest (okay, I’m beginning to realize just how addicted I am to this site!) and we tweaked it a bit. Instead of putting ‘Daddy’ at the top and signing it ‘Love your little girl’ we put the kids handprints at the top next to their name, which I liked must better than the version I saw.

Dad

For my Stepdad ‘Papa’, I decided to make a stepping stone for him to include in his garden. He’s a big outdoor type and him and my mom have a gorgeous property that they have beautifully landscaped. I thought a stepping stone with the little miss’ handprints and footprints on it would be perfect!

For my very sweet Mother-in-Law, my husband had an awesome fire pit made for her outdoor oasis that they have created. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a chance to capture a picture so a description of it will have to do. It is a large metal circle, like the size of a tractor tire, with fire vents on the sides. It looks pretty awesome in person, sorry no picture to share!

Phew…that was a lot of DIY projects but with any DIY project, once you finish one you beginning planning your next!

Cheers!

Mel

A Memorable First -Father’s Day

With this being my hubby’s first Father’s Day, I wanted to make it memorable for him. I love to plan special days for the people I love and care about, so of course I wanted to make this first memory as special as possible! I thought about how I was going to plan this special day for weeks, and I kept going back and forth with different ideas. Ultimately, I decided to plan a picnic lunch in the park and a present to go along with my theme for the day. I found this cool cooler about a month earlier at Target and knew I had to get it for my hubby! He has always enjoyed spending time on the Yakima River fishing and relaxing with good company.

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The day couldn’t have been more perfect, the hubby spent the morning relaxing and sleeping in. We had to celebrate Father’s Day on Saturday because it was my hubby’s only day off and he was pretty wore out. While he spent the morning relaxing, I was busy putting together our lunch and getting everything together that we would need for the afternoon. Once I had everything staged and ready to present, I grabbed the hubby to present him with his gift. I really wish I would have taken a picture of the little staged presentation for him to share with you, but I got caught up in the moment and forgot! I took the cooler that we had our lunch ready to enjoy in it, a bag of more goodies nestled on top with the new cooler, and a fishing pool leaning up against it all. Of course, he loved it!

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I was so excited about giving my hubby the gift above, so excited in fact that I had to give it to him the night before our big Father’s Day celebration. I saw an idea on Pinterest awhile back, where someone had taken their pets’ paw-prints and framed them. I decided to do my own take on it and have our two ‘hugsters’ with our little miss’ handprint/paw-prints on one canvas. It turned out perfect! Being the gushy type, I almost cried when I gave it to him because I knew that it would mean so much to him. He loved it and was almost as excited about it as I was! Just not on the verge of tearing up like I was!

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Getting back to the picnic in the park, we had beautiful weather that day, it wasn’t to hot and it wasn’t to cold…it was just right! We had a nice lunch and warded off the pesky seagulls long enough to eat and enjoy our food. Then we let the little miss take a few steps, fall, we would pick her up, and the process would repeat again for a while. Oh the joys of helping your little one learn how to walk! We then packed up our lunch, blanket, and stroller so the vulchers..I mean seagulls…wouldn’t destroy our stuff while we walked the short distance down to the water. The hubby and little miss played in the water while I snapped some pictures, we enjoyed this special moment for a second and then headed out. After all, we had a surprise 30th birthday to get too! And we’re off again….never a dull moment!

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Cheers!

Mel