Kitchen Makeover

Kitchen Makeover, Part 1: Paint, Paint, Baby!

Here’s a serious question….am I the only one who researches paint colors as if it’s a life altering decision?  Google searches.  Pinterest boards.  Paint chips.  Paint samples!  I realize I can change a paint color whenever I want, it’s not permanent.  But man…is it stressful!  Anyone…anyone at all? No?  Just me.  OK….

In any case!  I finally picked a paint color for the walls of the kitchen and I’m super excited about it.  After many a pins and ideas, I decided on Covington Blue by Benjamin Moore.  A few things drew me into the color.  First, the rest of my house is a light gray, so I wanted a color that would play well with the gray and not be too jarring or off putting.  Second, it felt like a grown-up version of a mermaid tail…so that’s always a win!  Third, I don’t have a TON of wall space vs. cabinets, so I wanted a color that would pop against the white cabinets and give it that farmhouse kitchen feel.

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Benjamin Moore, Covington Blue HC-138
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My inspiration!

After one coat of ceiling white, I knew this was going to be a major change.  I didn’t realize how gross the ceiling and walls were until a fresh coat of paint went on them.

Here’s an after photo with just the ceiling paint done.  To give you an idea, the ceiling and walls were the same color.  *insert grossed out scream here*

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I few naptimes later, the 2nd coat of the ceiling was done and both coats on the wall!

I’m kinda in love with the color!  It’s such a welcomed changed from the off-white/yellowy color we had before.  You might notice the backsplash isn’t painted.  That’s so I can lay down the stick tile down without having to wait the 3 week curing period the packaging suggests.  YAY stick tile!  That’s about 3 more steps away…so more on that later!

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The biggest DIY yet!!!

Ok! So this isn't a craft project, but it is a huge DIY! Our kitchen is small but mighty and now that I'm home with the girls it sees a lot more love. Unfortunately, it's just bleh and completely uninspiring. When we moved in, it was actually the least offensive room in the house. It was painted a neutral color unlike the rest of the house that was mustard yellow from floor to ceiling (literally, the ceiling, walls, and trim were all yellow).

Originally, we decided we didn't want to put any real money into it since we want to do a full renovation and completely redo the kitchen. So why put in money after money? Well, we still plan on doing that, but it's probably a few years away and I don't want to be in this kitchen the way it is for a few more years….I'll just get sad.

So! I decided….it's time for a DIY facelift! Literally everything in the kitchen is getting touched: walls, cabinets, countertops, backsplash, and floor. And the best part…all for under $500. To me, that was worth the money.

Over the next few weeks I'll document each step as we get it done. I'm working top to bottom, so the first step: PAINT!

To give you a quick glimpse into what I'm working with, here's a couple of before shots of the kitchen.

As you can see, or maybe you can't, but the mismatched linoleum tiles are peeling up, the cabinet doors all hang lopsided, and the toe kick under the sink is just nonexistent.

It's time to roll up my sleeves and make some changes up in here!

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My Ghosties

Hello again!

It’s been a while since I wrote anything, which isn’t to say I haven’t thought about writing.  In fact, I’ve thought about writing a post almost everyday.  So what kept me from sitting down and pecking one out?  Well, I guess it’s idea of “for who?”  It brings up the question: when do you share a blog?

My husband is a blogger and the second I told him I was going to start my own he told me he’d share it with everyone as soon as I was ready. But, when am I ready?  Do you share your blog right away and hope you keep up with it?  Do you do what I’m doing and gain a backlog of posts so there’s something to actually share?  Is it something in the middle?  This has been my struggle.  Without a following – who are you writing for?  I’ve lovingly starting referring to the invisible following as my ghosties.

So with that all said, I’m going to start a Pinterest board just for this blog and share some ideas there.  I’m hoping to get out a birthday party review post soon.  They’ll be a ton of photos from Nola’s big day and I’ll gradually get up links for some tutorials!

Until then…see ya soon ghosties!

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Poppies..Popppppies

Spring has finally sprung here in NY!

The rain and grossness has cleared and the sun is shining. Forecast shows it’s going to rain again, but at least for today – the girls and I can enjoy the spring weather and get out of the house!

This year, I’m set on getting the front of my house under control.  Right now, it’s a mix of bushes and English Ivy.  Not hideous, but definitely not in bloom.  I just want it to look a bit more inviting and colorful.  Less bushes…more flowers!

Speaking of flowers, I’ve been working on the flowers for Nola’s birthday.  Being a Wizard of Oz birthday, naturally, I wanted a lot of poppies!  I didn’t want to pay a ton of money for fresh poppies the day of and I couldn’t find any artificial poppies that seemed cost-effective for just the day.  This lead to finding 2 amazing tutorials.  The first is on Lia Griffith using tissue paper and the second is a YouTube video from Tissue Paper Flowers Holly Craft.  Since I wanted to make a bunch of flowers, I modified both of their tutorials to use streamers instead of crepe paper and tissue paper.  So far, I’ve made 50 poppies and I haven’t even used half the roll of either color!

After making a bunch of poppies from both tutorials, I feel like the Holly Craft version are a bit easier/faster.  It eliminates the step of making a solid center and just goes to the fringe.  It also allows you to just wrap the petals on, instead of gluing each one.  I know I said I was going to give you as many tutorials as I could, but these 2 ladies did an amazing job to begin with!  So, if it’s not broke, don’t fix it!  Well, maybe tweak it a bit…

A few things I did differently/noticed:

  1. The biggest thing is I used streamers instead of tissue paper or crepe paper.  Like I mentioned above, for the amount that I needed to make, this was a more budget friendly way to go. Especially for a 3-year-old’s birthday party!
  2. While doing the Holly Craft version, I found it was a bit difficult to get the petals to stay in place as I was twisting.  I’m not sure if it was the glue I was using or if I was wrapping it to tightly/loosely.  In any case, it took me a bit to get the hang of it and even then I had to really hold the petals in place as I wrapped.
  3. For the Lia Griffith flowers, I felt like the petals weren’t super secure on their own. They didn’t create a “tail” like her tutorial showed to wrap the floral tape around (this might be because of the width of the streamers). I just used my trusty glue gun to glue around the bottoms and secure everything in place.
  4. Once again in the Lia Griffith flowers, I couldn’t find foam balls ANYWHERE!  I just took a square of tracing paper about 2x2in and rolled it into a ball.  This allowed me to skip the wrapping in green tissue paper and go right into the black.  It did it’s job and gave a bit less of an even texture and more of a flower center.

The orange poppy is the Holly Craft while the red is Lia Griffith. The differences are subtle, so choose whichever is easier for you!

The whole project cost less than $10 and I made about 50 or so flowers.  You won’t hear me complaining about that!

The finished centerpieces for the Wizard of Oz party.  Just some mason jars, ribbon, and paper shreds.

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Happy Easter!

Happy Easter all!  No crafts today, just relaxing with family and enjoying this incredible weather we’re having here in Rockland. 

Our tradition this year was pretty simple: dying eggs with Paz tablets and vinegar with an Easter egg hunt in the living room. I’m not sure if you guys have seen the shaving cream method going around, but it looks super cool and plays into the galaxy theme that’s been taking over. A few years ago it was the literal tie dying method. Who knows what next year will bring!

As for now, I hope your day is filled with family, food, egg hunts and pastel colors!

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April showers

I’m not sure where you are located, but here in NY – the weather has been teasing us!  Yesterday was almost 90 degrees and today is rainy and gross.  On days like today, I try to use the girls’ nap time to craft and get some things off the to-do list.  We might not be able to get outside, but at least I can say things got done!

This week I moved away from birthday party crafting and worked on my deck!  The whole fall/winter season we were out there with no railings.  With Nola’s party less than a month away, it was time to get those bad boys back up!  After months of research, I found a pretty thorough video that showed me exactly how to get it done.  I know the typical or “correct” way is to sink posts, but I really didn’t want to go through all that.  I called over my mom fora helping hand and with a quick trip to Lowes the wood and screws were in my possession!  I’ve worked on it for the past few days, and remarkably – it’s looking pretty awesome.

This project has brought up one of my ultimate pet peeves.  I hate it when people feel the need to butt in on situations they are not a part of.  Perfect example was yesterday.  I’m outside drilling pilot holes, screwing these spindles into a perfectly framed deck (some epic work by the one and only Mama Dotts!); and my neighbor decided to pop over and tell me “you know, you’re going to have to sink corner posts.”  Now, this guy is super nice and I don’t have a problem with him. However, he always feels the need to tell us “how it’s done”.   How to clean our siding, why pay for professionals to paint the house – just do it this way, etc.. I proceeded to tell him that I know that’s the typical way, but I did some research and I don’t need posts and I’ve had a carpenter look over the plans, blah, blah, blah. He just gave me that *I think you’re wrong* look and said “good luck with that”.  I smiled and said thanks and that it couldn’t be worse than what it was. What I wanted to say was “sir – if my husband was out here and told you the same thing…would you have doubted him as much as you did me??  My gut says – NO!  If I mess this up, that’s on me! That’s my time and money.  I don’t need you to tell me how I have to do it.”  Gah!!!  It’s so infuriating!  Ok – end of rant…

We all have things that can make us go crazy – what are some of your pet peeves?  In the meantime, here are some deck in progress pics!

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Let the 3rd Birthday madness begin!

As you will all learn in our time together, I tend to go a little over the top when it comes to my girls’ birthdays.  To be fair, I’ve only had to deal with Nola’s, but I already have a theme in mind for Sophie’s (a post for another time).

Any way – this year our theme is The Wizard of Oz!  Nola loves that movie and we thought it would be a really fun theme to bring to our backyard. After searching for the perfect invitation inspiration, I realized I was going to have to create this from scratch.  Everything I found was either way too fancy (think wedding/engagement party), too kiddie (think cartoon characters), or based on the book version of the characters – which Nola would not recognize.  So, I set off to master an invite that was both accurate and not too intense for a 3 year old’s birthday party.

What I created was a combo of printed 5×7 cards and some Cricut magic.  Nola has a hardcover Wizard of Oz book with the perfect cover art for the invite.  After a little Googling, I was able to find a match without the 75th Anniversary sticker.  The next problem to tackle was making the yellow brick road look like it filled the entire invitation. Luckily, I’m a copy/paste master!  I wasn’t too concerned what the middle of the card looked like, since I knew it would be covered with the insert, so I copied the very bottom of the picture, cropped out the grass, and pasted it a few times over to create a curve in the road!  Without the insert, you can CLEARLY see my copy/paste job…but it’ll all be covered!

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Once I knew what the background was going to look like, I started to build the insert.  I used 3 bracket shapes in slightly different sizes to give it some depth.  The bottom layer is some Recollections glitter cardstock in Cherry.  I found the glitter didn’t rub off and create an unwanted glitter bomb in the envelope.  The middle layer is just a patterned filled shape that I print and cut and the top layer is just white cardstock.  Once everything was cut, I glued the white and blue layers together with regular glue and used heavy-duty glue dots to mount those to the glitter layer.  I used also used the dots to mount the whole thing to the background. I didn’t want it to move once it was mailed!  The finishing touch was a little Toto in the corner.
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I’m super happy with how they turned out!  They’re different from anything I found online AND they set the stage for the rest of the party!

Next on the hit parade…custom printed envelopes!  Let the Cricuting begin!

FONTS: LD Oz and Imprint MT Shadow (this came pre-installed on my computer, so check yours before downloading).