book report time

playroom progress

We have a fun play room. This room really works hard & gets well used therefore the door ‘usually’ remains closed (if ya’ know what I mean, {wink, wink}).  When we moved in it was a blank canvas, complete with nasty carpet (the stains were free with purchase), sponge painted walls, a wallpaper boarder, and a shakey-breaky-fan, holla! Endless possibilities!

Here she is in all her “before” glory, cira 2010:

Soon after we moved in we installed our beautiful wood floors, which took us just about 6 months to install (and believe it or not, we aren’t even flooring amateurs… but living in a home and redoing the entire ground surface is quit painstakingly difficult, messy and back breaking… hence the 6 month process). So first it was the floors. Then I decided to try my hand at making the awfully-ugly fan somewhat cute. I liked how YHL did this to their fan in their first house. So I tried that idea and added a fabric cover for a pop of color. It turned out cute and cost me $0 (I had left over fabric and an old but stained lamp shade, perfecto!). That polka dot shade cover lead me to my paint colors for the room: green and blue (I color matched a few of the dots in the fabric). Polka dot fan and striped room with red accents.

So here we are after three years. This room has had a lot of use and very little decorating attention. This past weekend I decided to give the space a little love/spruce up. After cleaning it up, tossing and giving a lot away, I had a good foundation. I brought the rug up from the living room (see a picture of it with the new sofa in this post here) as I love this rug but really hated the way it looked with the new sofa. I am liking it in here for now plus it’s very soft which perfect for playing on (not sure how the boys will fare with the floral theme, but for now, no complaints).  A while back like a year ago, over a loud discussion and pulling our hair out, trying to keep the toy clutter organized, we built 3 of these toy storage bins and shelves, then we painted them white, and never looked back…best storage eva! ALthough it’s usually cluttered looking, it’s fairly organized, for reals!

The hazy yellow photos are my bad. I only had time to photograph at night…

working a 10-11 hour day job doesn’t leave me much time for snapping great photo’s of my spaces during the day.

Those bins on each side of the storage unit are “organized legos”. And that big red canvas bucket in the center is also legos (that haven’t been tediously separated into the organized bins…; color organizing the legos was a looooooooooooooooong project that I don’t feel like finishing any time soon. I’d say 75% of the legos are color coordinated and neatly put into those side bins while the other 25% are still in the big red bin, awaiting their departure.

The boys actually seem to like the color coordinated lego system. So even though it was a pain-in-the-rear, I suppose it was worth it (and they helped me seperate them too, so they had some pride in getting stuff organized too).

And I tried my best to organize the closet (thankfully the doors shut on that closet so it will always look neat!

And some labels too…whoo-whee, big time!

And a nice area to lay around and read/relax…

That red chair is an oldie from PBKids and has seen better days. But I love the red accents in this room so I’ll keep it until we have a better option. The pillows are from the boys old nautical room theme, also red so a perfect fit in the color scheme, win/win!

Here is another repurposed item that we have had for a long time (7 years or so). This table and chair set (originally 4 chairs) was separated all over the house. The table was covered in commercial carpet and used for the Rokenbok set that I loved but the boys rarely used. The chairs were outside for a while, then in dads office and now they are back with the table as a set. The table and chairs all need to be refinished, the chair paint is peeling and the table surface is cracking. For now it serves a purpose as a good work area and it looks cute in the pictures. Sooner than later I will need to spruce it up.

And that’s the playroom in a nut shell…for now!

Eventually we’d like to add a TV (for Wii games and the occasional movie) and maybe a loveseat or some oversized bean bags… we shall wait and see.

One last look:

parrot costume – no sew!!

Lets make a parrot costume! As in a NO-SEW parrot costume that’s totally easy and SUPER cute!

I’ve broken this down into three parts; part one is the body, part two is the feet and part three will be the hat for the beak and eyes!

Here is our final product. It turned out super cute and believe me when I say it was far from perfect… but the imperfection is what made it so adorable and my son loved it! So have fun with this one, it’s worth it!

First you’ll need some basic supplies. I used some things I already had and I purchased a few things.


Step #1.  Seriously, I am so simple that I had my 5 year old son put the long sleeve shirt on, then I cut a few holes in his shirt accordingly and as I dreamed up. Pretty much the elbows and one hole in the back of the shirt and used pipe cleaner to tie it onto the shirt. I figured pipe cleaner was soft and better than using wire, cuter than string, plus I have a ton of pipe cleaner so it was a perfect fit for this costume.

Step #2.  Maybe have your child take the shirt off for this step… I had my son leave his shirt on and he started to get very restless, waiting on me. I applied fabric glue onto some of the feathers and then pressed them directly onto the shirt. It was really that easy, honest!

Step # 3. Repeat step #2 until you have a fair amount of feathers/boa lued onto your t-shirt. No need to glue all over the shirt, just a bit here and a bit there. Have fun.

You basically have one boa on the left side, tied at the elbow and another boa tied to the elbow on the right. Noah was pretty little here and we used ONE BOA on the arms and one boa wrapped around him and glued all over the shirt! I tied the the string at the end of boa and put it on his wrists, like a bracelet and it just hung off his wrists. See the first picture in this post. It gave a great “wing” effect when he held his arm out!


All I did for the feet was cut out a few of the fingers and left a few, I wanted them to be comfy yet a misfit sort-of cute. Totally accomplished! Best parrot feet EVER!

PART THREE – Beak, head feathers and eyes!

Here we are so far, without the head dress.  {silly, cute boy of mine}

Supplies I used for the hat (I had all these items on hand): adjustable baseball cap, more glue, felt and pom pom balls.

STEP #1. I cut out a few “fake” feathers out of felt. I did orange, yellow, green and black because that’s what I had. I drew directly onto the felt with a marker and cut them out , I love felt!!

STEP #2. I glued an entire piece of rectangular 8×11 felt onto the bill of the baseball cap (see the green outline) then I cut it out accordingly (see photo above, cut lines are pink). This was the easiest way I could think to make a beak. And it worked! So put glue on the top of the bill only, press your felt down, centered and hanging over the front, then cut it out around the head of the hat (be sure not to cut your hat) and cut a triangular shape on the front of the hat.

Step #3. Flip the hat over, tuck your sides under and glue them down.

*** Keep gluing until you have a beak shape. Trim if you need.

STEP #4. Randomly glue your felt cut-out feathers (from step #1) onto the front of the hat. No need to be perfect, and be sure to layer. I cut slits into the felt feathers to give some dimension. I also stuck a few feathers from the boa in with the felt feathers. Once I was done I trimmed up the front with a thin strip of the yellow to make it look clean and finished.

STEP #5. Add some eye balls! Two white pom pom balls and two smaller brown pom pom balls. Glued on and done! That was easy!

And the FINAL product (that took me less than 2 hours to make, for reals!

TRICK OR TREAT! Give this Parrot a worm to eat!!

Happy Almost Halloween!!

Karlstad update

Could it be true? YES!!! We are the proud owners of a Karlstad sofa, holla!!!! So exciting!

I talked about our idea to go ahead and purchase the Karlstad in this post here. Since then we have purchased, put together and dreamed up a new living room!

Here’s where we’re at so far:


And what a HUGE improvement the new sofa is!

Our living area is looooooooong and narrow. Our sofa we’d been using was uncomfortable, dated, brown, and too small. It also seemed too big for the space even though it was a normal size sofa. We decided to go with the Karlstad for many reasons but style was #1. With this sofa we could go larger without the bulk. The low profile of this sofa is perfect for our narrow space, giving the illusion that our room is taller than it really is. We also had a lot of layout options, from traditional L sectional sofa, to love seat and everything in between (like chaise loungers added to a love seat, such a great idea!).

Now that we have the sofa in place, a few things are looking a bit out of place. For example, the coffee table is too big and needs to go. The rug is beautiful but doesn’t look good with the color of the new sofa, need to do something there.

Here’s what I’ve come up with so far:

#1.  An Arc Lamp!! I dream of an arc lamp and have been for like ever! Ohhhhh, I just love this lamp. I want one that arches waaaaay over the sofa, giving the space some dimension and drama. This may be a big purchase and therefore something I may not have for a while, but that’s all right, I’ll wait (boo-boo).

#2.  Tree stump tables. We (the hubby and I) can totally make these. I am thinking three of them in the center of the Karlstad, instead of the current black coffee table. Three tree stumps at slightly different heights. Maybe even paint one (or all of them) gold! I love the tree stumps and our home backs the national forest, so finding a few tree stumps should be a fairly easy task!

#3.  Laptop side table. These nifty little creates are so great on so many levels! They are simple, clean lined furniture with a modern flare (yippee), they serve multiple purposes: side table, center table, foot rest, work station, etc. Versatile is the best word to describe these tables. And this one is on sale here at CostPlus for $69. A total must have. Plus, it will fit under the sofa and move wherever needed!

#4.  My treasured Kilim rug that I purchased a few months ago (see more on that purchase here). It’s been sitting in our master bedroom but deserves the spotlight of the living room. I am madly in love with this rug. It makes me smile, I really just can’t say enough about this fabulous rug and I think it will look perfect in the living room with the new sofa!

#5.  I’d like to build a floating drawer shelf under the TV. Something modern, super simple and streamline. A floating shelf with drawer to hold the wireless keyboard and mouse and the TV remote.

I love the new sofa and am looking forward to pulling this room together – just need a little patience, time, money, and skills…. Super exciting!


I read something SUPER exciting!!!

It has something to do with this amazing magazine of the past:

Ahhh, yes… that magazine that the design world has mourned loosing since 2009, Domino!

And there is also this beautiful book they published (it’s awesome):

Okay, so back to “what I read” / the BIG news… Domino magazine is going to RE-LAUNCH!!! HOLLA!!! Isn’t this fantastic news?  There are some differences this time however, the magazine will be quarterly, available at newstands and not via subscription (boo-whoo, could that really be true?) and there will be e-commerce (that’s pretty exciting!).

Read the entire article RIGHT HERE. EEEK! So exciting!

And visit the website HERE.

Have a Dominific Terrific Day!


boys owl bedding

A little update to the boys bedroom (see more about their awesome hanging beds and new bedroom here and here), a refresh on the bedding! FUN!

On a quick trip to IKEA (unfortunately is was a speed-shopping-kinda-day, and since IKEA is a 2 hour drive (one way) for me, I really try to go when I have time to appreciate it and waste a lot of time. However, my most recent trip wasn’t as planned and I was rushed (maybe a good thing… I spent less money!).

While there I picked up some bedding for the boys room. I was totally smitten with this owl-spider web-moon-dark coverlet.

This is my first bedding purchase from Ikea. I’ve been tempted many times, but usually I resist, however this time I was really loving this bedding. Not sure why I liked it so much, it’s sort of different, but the dark navy sky, with stars and owls… so cute (bedding is a dark navy color, picture makes it look like a bright blue). I do have to say, after washing and putting on the boys beds, it is NOT soft nor is it “nice against the skin” as stated in the add. I guess if you’re comparing it to sand paper, then yes, it is soft.

Once the bedding was on (and I also purchased the thin comforter, twin size, from IKEA to go with the coverlets) it looked better than expected! I totally LOVE this bedding! I love that it’s original, it is fun, and it’s not bulky or overwhelming, which is perfect for the hanging beds. Total WIN!

And since I’m sharing the new bedding, I thought I’d snap a few pictures of the boys enjoying their dual purpose beds (aka reading nooks). So far, so good. The hanging beds have been a huge hit with the boys and with their friends. Everyone who sees the boys room loves it and can’t say enough about how cool it looks.

Here are some sweet photo’s of the boys enjoying their reading time before bed (and snug in their new, cute owl bedding)…

And one last shot of the room at dark, with two sweet boys reading in their own, special spots. Sweet Dreams!

yellow lanterns

Holy Smokes!! I completed my yellow lantern idea (that I talked about here) and I am  super excited to show you all the results (hint: I’m very pleased with the outcome!!)

I purchased two more of our mini bathroom lights (see that post here) and got buseee!

I’ll let the photos do most of the talking… here we go!!

Step #1. PAINT! Always my favorite (spray painting that is). I didn’t use a primer, just two coast of glossy bright yellow spray paint. Super easy. I set the lamps directly  on a table and painted all but the underside (as that was already covered/setting on the table). My inspiration piece  (see the post here) was white on the underside of the shade, but I was game for leaving the galvanized area exposed for the underside.

Step #2. Break out with my trusty old Sharpie marker and add the black, detail to the rim of the lanterns, like my inspiration piece. This was easiest with a fatter tip. I started with a regular size sharpie and later changed to a wider tip.

Once I started to use the wider Sharpie I was able to get the detail on the rim without a hitch. It was a breeze! The “little messy” in the picture above, was when I was using the finer tip Sharpie.

WOW! What a difference, right? I am so thrilled with how these turned out! Now I wish I would have done these lamps for our entire house three years ago…but I had no idea they could be found so affordably online (and totally customized)! When we moved into our place we replaced all the exterior lights. The house was built in 1994 and all the lights were original. The lights were cheap brass and faded, not all of them were working, they all had different bulbs… the list goes on. Well, we had NINE exterior lights to replace, so we went with the cheapest black lights we could find (and those actually spruced the place up quite a bit). I found the lights for $18/ea and I was stoked! However, had I known about these bad boys for sale at $39/ea. I would have waited and replaced half and half rather than spending the $160 + for the black ones we purchased! Oh well, it’s all a learning curve.

Of course now I am excited to start replacing the other lanterns on the house… here are a few Photoshoped samples that I did on our house…


I think it’s safe to say that these outdoor lanterns are a HUGE hit at the Kruger household, and I am super excited to start adding these new lantern all over the exterior of the house! SO FUN!

P.S. Can you see the rim detail? It’s not bold but it’s there and I totally dig it! I love the little added “flair” to these awesome lights!

I’m more than pleased! What do you think?

Lego Creations

click on photo above to read more about my personal goal in the c+p project

There is something very sweet and so charming about kiddos and their Lego masterpieces. I am always fascinated with the cool creations that my boys come up with, on their own, when making legos without the kits… just going to town with what they have in their big-ass pile of lego-mess! I love what they dream up and I LOVE Legos!

Here is Mr. C, my eldest, with one of his recent creations… a super-dooper-awesome-extra-extra-long-super-hero-vehicle!

And here he is showing off his neat car, proud as can be! It’s great to be a kid and it’s even better to be a mom :)

Karlstad anyone?

Okay, okay… before I even start this post I have to fess up. I was really IN LOVE (you know, the teenage, 1 month romance that I thought would last forever, that type of love) with the Darrin sofa from this post here.

I still really like the sofa, I love the style, the color, etc… but when it came down to it, we have decided that we need something bigger, like a sectional. Okay, so not just a sectional but a low back, clean lined, AFFORDABLE sectional.

As you’ve probably already guessed, we have decided to go with the Karlstad. To be exact, we have measured out our space and the love seat with two chaises will be our pick.

source: IKEA

After following YHL for a few years and loving their style and most of their design choices, the hubs and I decided to go to IKEA and check out their sofa selection (YHL has a huge Karlstad sectional and they really like it). To our surprise, we loved the Karlstad. It has a 10 year warranty and it’s just around $1000 for a big sofa WITH the slip cover. And might I add that I love the idea of being able to change out the slip cover if we want to change up our look.

Some thing I didn’t like about the Karlstad were the pine legs and there are a lot of them! It was a little overwhelming. I’d like to add some sweet, contemporary legs to the sofa eventually. Something like these:


Or there are these metal legs that IKEA sells separately but made specifically for the Karlstad sofa, so these may be of interest too… just not sure yet. We shall wait and see how the couch looks in our living room and then go from there. Looks like we are 99% on board to purchase this sofa (holla!).

Here are some insperation pictures of Karlstad in other homes:


source: Apartment Therapy



source: door

source: emilymccall.jpg

Front Porch Lights

Since posting and talking about our summertime entry, I decided that we need some fun, new porch lights.

Here is our “summertime entry” which will soon need to be transformed into a fall/winter entry. But for now… I am holding on to summer as long as I can.

Currently we have basic porch light (as in, they were affordable and looked awesome compared to the rusting, fake brass lights that were on the house when we moved in). I really love the black light fixtures that we put on the house but they are getting boring and have always been so basic (but hey, at $18 each, it was a bargain and our house has 9 outdoor sconces, so we needed to keep it on the cheap).  We are ready to add some pizazz! POW! WHOA! to the front entry. And if it turns out great we can slowly replace all the other lights too.

I am really, REALLY loving these outdoor lanterns:

source: Barn Light Electric

I however cannot do lights for over $100 a pop.  Although the quality of these lanterns is top notch and the price is actually reasonable compared to what else I’ve seen, like here… I just can’t come up with good reason to spend ($200+) ca$h on two lanterns “just because I want a change” and I’ll probably change them again in a few years, hence… I need must keep it affordable!

My idea is this… purchase two more of the same lights I used in our 1/4 bath makeover (see that here). The Portfolio brand, galvanized lamp at Lowes (is only $39!). It looks very similar in shape and I love it in our bathroom!

Here is the stock photo from Lowe’s:

Source: Lowes

Why not purchase two of these bad boys, paint them yellow and have the same look for less than a $100 for BOTH!?! Sounds like a plan to me!!

I think I may add a little detail to the sconce too. Similar to this one (note the black line around the edge of the lantern, I love that look, like porcelain):

                         source: Rejuvenation

I’ll keep you posted! Shoot, at my rate, I’ll probably get this done and then it’ll be time to decorate for fall and my yellow wall sconces will need to be dark brown or black again! LOL!

Make it a great day!


favorite things – kitchen

A while back I posted on some of my favorite things (see that post here). That post was more specific to things I like for me. I thought it was fun to share those things and I love reading other blogs that also share their favorite things. SO I figured I try another favorite things post but with a twist… the kitchen edition. Not too exciting, I know, but hey… still fun!

The little things (and usually the most essential):

1. Ikea carries these nifty and colorful scrub brushes. They are only $1.49, I mean seriously, how could you go wrong here? I stock up on these bad boys (and Ikea is a 2 hour drive, one way, for me so it’s months before I can get back to get more). I use these brushes to clean dishes (duh), and I have one in every bathroom, under the sink, for cleaning. I use one for cleaning the eggs too. I just love these dang things. Plastis at Ikea (not a promo here, just my opinion and no I wasn’t paid for this but I wish I was!)

2. Mini colander in fun colors. See my colander in this kitchen post here, it’s an aqua color. I keep it on my sink and it store our fresh eggs. We use our eggs within a week so it’s not necessary to refrigerate them, hence the cute little colander I picked up here. I love the color, I love that it’s metal (easy to clean) and I love that it’s small and fits perfectly on my sink.

3. Glass storage jars. I purchased my jars at Wal-Mart and I have loved them ever since. They look beautiful and add charm to the kitchen. Someday I think it would be stellar to have a pantry full of these, similar to this awesome one here (like an old general store). See my post here about my super awesome glass container.

The Middle Sizers:

4. Pendant Lamps are SOOO great for kitchens! I love pendant lamps. Sure, I really wanted something along the lines of this or this but lets be realistic, I want a lot of things so I need to keep a budget. The Ottava pendant lamp at Ikea totally fits the bill with it’s big design on a low budget, perfect! Eventually I think I may paint these brass but I’m not entirely sure just yet. However, because of the great price I won’t be afraid to try something new with this pendant. I love it.

5. Do I need to say more? Isn’t the Kitchenaid a staple in every kitchen? Well if it isn’t this mixer it is probably one similar. I’ve had my mixer since 2000 and it’s still going strong as day one. My parents bought a white Kitchenaid for my grandmother when I was a kid, 30 years later that thing is still taking a beatin’ and my gram uses it every day.

The BIG ticket Item/Splurge:

6. When we moved into our house it was stripped bare of all the appliances, so a fridge, dishwasher and range were must haves on our list. The hubby does all the cooking and was super stoked that we had natural gas in this home. So we decided that we’d buy a professional gas range. We went cheap on other things to justify our big purchase for the range. I bought the range hood ,and painted it Aqua, at Habitat for Humanity for $5.00! Total steal. See a post on that here. We bought a stainless dishwasher at Costco for under $600 (with a rebate), awesome! And we borrowed a fridge for our first two years, which I painted in chalkboard paint…(update: we have drawer refrigerators in our kitchen now, but please do notice that those DID NOT make my favorites list).  And because I like to think of myself as somewhat thrifty, I scowered craigslist and found a professional appliances resale store in Phoenix (a 2 hour drive away). They sell appliances that were floor models from showrooms all over the city and they sell damaged and refurbished appliances too. We paid… wait for it… $1780 for our DCS 30″ professional range. It was a floor model so we scored! It was 2 years old and had never been used {swoon}. We received a 1 year warranty with it too. Such a steal! See here for our stove on sale via the web…. Lets just say we were more than happy to save nearly $3,000!

What’s in your kitchen?