front entry progress

I feel like I am always “updating” the house, making changes, spray painting something and looking for new projects.

After seeing this before and after picture of our front entry, I realized how much fun it is to see the changes to the house and how much my design taste has changed/evolved over the years.

Here is a good before shot of the house about a a year and half ago.

Just looking at this picture brings back memories of the San Diego house… this was furinture from the Kashmere house, the ‘beige’ home!

Let’s focus on the little black bench. That baby has earned her keep through and through! We purchased the bench from Ikea in 2003 for our first house. WOW, an Ikea bench that cost under $60 and it’s over 9 years old. Can we say AWESOME?!

A lot has changed since this picture (floors, room design, wall color, etc). And the little black bench also got a well overdo makeover.

I took a can of yellow spray paint (purchased at the trustee Home Depot) and I went wild! I did however get so excited that I forgot a very important step… SANDING! I should have lightly sanded the bench but I didn’t. Oh well. It still turned out fabulous and I TOTALLY LOVE IT!

I am so in love with my “new/old” yellow bench. It’s amazing what a can of spray paint can do!

And that canvas print… more on that later. Those are some ‘self’ portraits I did for our holiday cards last year. However, the color from the canvas and the yellow bench… it’s really working for me!

Here’s a little side-by-side action to really soak in the HUGE difference that a new picture and a can of spray paint can make:

lantern update

Holy Smokes! I never updated on the candle-lantern-to-pendant-light project that I started HERE. No worries, I am going to catch up on that right this second!

If you’ll remember, I scored this amazing candle lantern at Tuesday Morning (it was on clearance too).

I love the Pottery Barn and Ballard Design styles with the lantern pendants. I mean these lamps are super DROOL worthy. In my original post (here) I showed you some of my pendant lamp loves. I was especially drawn to the colorful yellow pendant (and I think I still may give this bad boy a splash of paint too).


Source: The Urban Electric Co.

Can you see what I see? I SWEAR this is my lantern! OH MY! The similarities are just so SIMILAR! Can you tell how excited I am?  I love the Urban Electric Co. and all their delightful, designer lights, what an amazing selection too.

Let’s get a side by side shall we?

I mean really, how much closer could it get to the real thing? Needless to say, I am beside myself with excitement and I have a few MORE ideas to perfect my fabulous lantern but for now, it’s hanging up and it looks awesome!

So… first things first. the lantern that I purchased was deeply discounted but not without reason (and to my good fortune). One of the glass sides was missing. For me, no problem… for the store = clearance item. I found the lantern on the top shelf, up there with other rejected items, looking all lonely. I spotted it instantly and snagged it to see why it was on the “get out of the store” shelf. It was missing glass, THAT’S IT?!! Yeah! Score!

I could see that the space for the glass was about 8×10 in size so I figured I could put in some glass from an unused picture frame at home or better yet (as my husband brought to my attention) I could buy a pre-cut piece at Home Depot for under $3! Awesome!

That was easy!

I also purchased a few other items to make this bad boy into a hanging pendant lamp.

I was able to purchase everything locally and put my lamp up in no time at all!

There was already a hole in the top of the lantern (so convenient), so using the Pendant Kit was a breeze. Slipped the cord of the pendant kit right through the hole in the top of the lantern and had the handy hubby wire it in to the existing spot where our old pendant was hanging. Added the cool vintage style bulb and KA-BAM! All done!

Here she is in all her glory: {sigh} I totally love it! Please excuse the disaster area in the foreground (I am normal and I don’t keep a super shiny, clean house all the time: wink, wink). Notice the lovely holes in our ceiling? Yeah, total eye sores. We are debating on a plank style ceiling so the holes will remain until we decide what to do (design wise) with the lighting in the entire area. It’s all over the board right now but as I always so “our home is a work in progress”.

Make it a great day & thanks for stopping by!



Dog room


This isn’t the best picture to actually “take it all in”. And what I really mean is this room was hideous! I think this room may have been the reason people weren’t interested in buying our home… well lucky us then, because I knew I could transform it.

See that vinyl flooring. It’s a beauty. Well the photo makes it look better than it is. Let’s just say that when the neighbors dog comes over he can’t help but lift his leg an pee on this floor! Disgusting, right? It smells as bad as it looks.

The walls were covered in a mural. No, not the cute, artistic kind. The type of mural where you look, guess and assume what it was. To give some credit, I do have to say that I favored the murals (yes there are 3 rooms with murals and one is very large), more than the two tone sponge painting that was in nearly every other room of the house (gag!).

Hoewever, someone spent a bit of time muraling (is that a word?) and sponging our home so my apologies to whomever that was, I’m sure it was a lot of hard work, time and effort so I can’t fault anyone for that… it just wasn’t our taste.

So here are some “progress” pictures of the DOG room (I have future plans for this space but future means at least a year or two).

This is the “Dog Room” because our dogs spend more time in here than we do. They have a big, comfy bed that they snuggle on and their food is in here too.

Isn’t it great what a little paint can do?

This paint is also in my guest bedroom, it’s Peacock Blue from Home Depot. I freaking LOVE IT!! It’s bold, fun and bright… totally my thing! And accented with orange and yellow, it really adds drama. I am loving this room!

To really add some POP (with my favorite color) I spray painted the matting of three white Ikea frames (that I already had = score). I just used gloss orange spray paint, sprayed the mats in my garage (2 coats), then I added some scratch scrapbooking paper, put everything back into the Ikea frames and WHOA, awesome!! The white frame, orange matt, scrapbook paper and blue wall are a beautiful combination.

That cork board above the bench was originally black. It was from Ballard Design. I’ve had it for about 8 years and I love it. I wanted something to help take up the large, dead space in this vaulted room. The white was really working for me so I decided to spray the black frame white. Amazing transformation. I felt like I had a brand new bulletin board and all it took was a little bit of white spray paint!!! Easy-peasy!

The floor is ANOTHER PROJECT IN ITSELF! But, for now, it’s really working. It’s a quaint, fun little space.

Of course, I can’t forget to mention that sweet little $10 chandelier!!

YES, $10!!!

I bought an ugly (I mean ugly) chandelier at Goodwill, sprayed it with that same orange paint from the matting in the frames, and WOW!! It’s my favorite light fixture in our ENTIRE house!

I added those little crystals from an old (now broken) lamp I had (glad I kept them, love the way a few crystals can change the entire look… and now they are looking great on this SWEEET chandelier!

Until later…


Mother’s Day Gift

Another Pinterst Inspired Project.

You can see my pin for the original project here.

And here is what I made!!


Clay pots, 3 sizes (you could use plastic containers too)

Vinyl numbers (I used my Silhouette Cameo to make these)

Spray paint (2 or three colors, your choice. I needed 2 cans of the red and 1 can of yellow)

1 can LeakSeal (see image below)

Bricks (I used 5 total)

Soil & plants :)


Lightly clean off the clay pots first.

Then, in a designated area, get started painting (whoop! whoop!)

I did this a little backwards but you may want to seal your pots (optional). If you do decide to seal them, do it before spray pairing them. I didn’t do it first and had to do paint touch up!

I added house numbers to my pots (this is completely optional). I used my cameo machine to do the numbers. And I decided to add the word “Welcome” to the center pot too. It ended up being a crooked “welcome”  but I still like the way it turned out.


That was pretty much the most time consuming part of this project! Honest, this project was a snap and SO fun to make.

Now I added the bricks & soil to the bottom pot.

This is what will hold your pots up high and create the stacking effect. So cool & so easy!

Almost finished!

I added petunias and daisies for flowers, I liked the purple ones the best. Great pop for against the red and yellow pots!

I made two sets for my mom for Mother’s day. One for each side of her driveway.

She loved the look and how they added color to her entrance. What do you think?


Mother’s Day Garden

How lucky can one woman be?!!

I was surprised with a starter garden from my boys and my mom! They also made me some beautiful jewelry.

Waking up to a fresh, yummy breakfast, spending quality time with my family and planting a garden = amazing day!

Look at all these great plants for my NEW garden!! I hope I can keep these babies alive!

Here they are, so proud to bring me the bed for the new seeds that they started at Nana’s.

I am loving my new garden space.

We are planning to add some simple fencing around it to keep out critters (like our dogs and chickens especially).

This is the starter kit that we put up this weekend. I sure hope my veggies look as good as the ones in this picture! Hot Dang!

I am so lucky!

Thank you for an amazing, memorable Mother’s Day! I love you all!

Cropping photos for web

**When uploading your pictures for web viewing… there are a few REALLY important things to do.

Info: this image is cropped to 8×12″ at 72 dpi

First and foremost, 72 dpi (low resolution). This is best resolution for  web viewing for a few reasons, mainly -quicker upload speed and smaller resolution = harder for someone to copy your work.

I also watermark my photo’s, or at least I try to remember to watermark my photos for my protection. More on watermarking later. And I will give you a step-by-step guide on how to make your own watermark from you logo! Cool!!

Cropping. In photoshop (my program of choice for photo editing).

Open your image, then go to header bar and select IMAGE > IMAGE SIZE

You will se a similar window to the one below:

This is how you can see what size your photo currently is (and if it’s already been cropped, it should read your chosen crop size and 72 pixels/inch (dpi) for web browsing.

Here is where I crop in Photoshop, using my toolbar:

I usually save my file with a new name, never the original files name. I like to keep all the original files in their original state. If I want to come back and change the photo or print it for a larger print, using a 72 dpi is not ideal and the photo will be pixilated when I try to blow it up. SO keeping the RAW of full size JPEG is best for me.

Once you select your cropping size and 72 dpi, drag your crop tool over the photo, selecting your desired section of the image. Then press enter and your image is cropped. IF you goof up or don’t like you selection, simply go to EDIT > UNDO and your last move will be undone & you can re-crop.

Then, SAVE AS!!

And, in case your curious, this picture was taken in the AV mode (aperture priority) and here is the photo info. It was taken outside,near dusk.


Spring time sign

I was inspired by a fellow blogger. Over at there are a ton of great ideas for almost anything you can think of. I am such fan of her site. Check it out for sure!

My “pin” on Pinterest was my initial starting point. Filed in my “To Try” area, check out the link on the Tatertots blog here. Here is my INSPIRATION pin: I LOVED THIS!! I thought it was such a great idea… super creative and so FUN! Plus, look at those amazing colors. This was right up my alley! Subway style art + bright colors + SPRING! Fabulous!! Yipee!

So, it’s just shy of Easter and I have decided that I too can make a cute sign like this. Here was my take on the project… These were in the scrap pile. I was disappointed that I didn’t have something longer, like the inperation piece. I really loved the looooong subway style sign effect that the inspiration piece had. However, I was motivated (in the moment) and I needed to move. If I took a chance and made the trip to the lumber yard I may have lost interest or dreamed up another project or… well you can imagine. I have a short attention span!

Therefore, I needed to find paint too, NO TRIPS TO THE HARDWARE STORE! Stay focused!!

SCORE! This light blue paint will be perfect for my base coast!

I love using left overs.

And I have a helper!

This was a great project to include my boys on.  Painting can be so fun!

I applied scrapbook letters to the base coat after it was dry (of course).

I used my pencil to mark the areas where I thought the lettering would look best. I also was trying to keep in mind that I wanted a cute flag-ish banner on my sign too. SO I was intentionally trying to leave space for the banner.

I found quite the assortment of acrylic paint in my craft box (note: I said craft BOX, not craft room… ).

Luckily I had some nice spring time colors that I thought would be perfect for this project.

After all my letters were applied and pressed down firmly, I squirted on the acrylic paint. As you can see from the picture above, I had no ryme or reason to the coloring, it eventually became all the colors lightly mixed together, and I LOVED IT!

I waited for about an hour. Acrylic paint dries pretty fast. I didn’t want the letters to be too hard to get off but the paint was really dry and only after one short hour i found many of the letters hard to get off. Exacto knife to the rescue! It worked like a charm.

I seem to have a lot of scrapbook paper. I find myself collecting paper! I always have good intentions of making a cute scrapbook or something fun like cards but then, inevitably, I get side tracked. SO, I have plenty of paper! The inspiration piece used fabric. I thought it would be easier, for me, to use thick scrapbooking paper.

Almost done and it is looking amazing! I have quite a few spools of ribbon in my “craft box”. The hard part here was ‘which one do I like best’?

I went with the plain, light blue in the top left. But I really liked them all so I think any thin ribbon would have worked.

I loosely lined everything up, then when I was happy with the way it looked I HOT GLUED.

AND HERE IT IS ON MY MANTEL, READY FOR SPRING!! I TOTALLY LOVE IT, even if it’s shorter than I wanted, I completely love the way it turned out! Ta-Da!!