Monday, January 30, 2012

Off to a great start....

So yeah, it's the last week in January and I'm already behind. In my defense Andrew and I have both been sick this week and my week started with a urgent nanny search because my nanny quit with only one week's notice and I had to go into massive nanny network/interview/trial mode for the first half of the week. On the upside we found a great nanny who Andrew loves and who I think is going to be a great fit for our family. The downside... I'm WAY behind on Pinterest projects!!! So, this week I plan to do two projects to make up for last week, and right now I'll share a couple of other ideas I found on Pinterest that were implemented last year.

Daddy Backrub Roadmap Shirt

I found this idea before Christmas and knew it was a must make! My husband is always begging for backrubs and my son is into cars... seems simple enough. I got some fabric markers, a t-shirt and got to work. It was super easy and a fun gift to see opened on Christmas morning. Andrew had fun driving the cars around on daddy's back and daddy got a mini back massage.

Paint Tape Finger Painting

I stumbled upon this pin and got inspired to pull out the finger paints that Andrew got for his birthday. We had a painting playdate and used the painters tape to hold down the paper and then got creative. We taped the kids' initials and let them go to town with the paint. The initials turned out really well so next we taped out some Christmas trees and used the green and red paint to cover the page. They turned out really well... I'm thinking this idea works for pretty much any occasion. Tape a heart for Valentines Day etc.... A few tips. Let the paint dry completely before pulling the tape off and use paper meant for finger painting. Regular paper gets soggy and tears when the tape comes off. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Medicine Bottle Check List

Talk about the stars aligning! I came home from the doctor with a sick baby and his first ever prescription medication... logged onto pinterest and saw this idea. So easy and so smart. Use a sharpie to make a chart on the bottle and check off when he gets medication. No forgetting a dose, no double dosing. Simple, smart, done.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Awesome Kid Bookshelves!

I AM SO IN LOVE WITH THESE BOOKSHELVES!!! I've never been so excited about a project and so thrilled with the result! If you have kids, you must make these!!!

I found this great idea for easy kid bookshelves about 6 months ago and loved it so much that I instantly pinned it... then I looked around pinterest and found about 15 different versions of the same idea. I pinned some of those, then looked at them and marveled at how simple and awesome they were. I kept pinning, and looking, and pinning... I know, I'm so productive! When I decided on my New Year's resolution I knew that I wanted this to be one of the first ideas I did. Then when Andrew got a couple dozen more books for Christmas I knew I had no choice.

I love how they show the covers of the books so that a kid who's not reading yet can still easily find their favorites, and be intrigued by the cover of a new book. I also think they look good and will help add a lot of color to his walls as we transition from super calm sleepy baby room to toddler room where he can be active and spend time playing with toys, reading etc.

I went to Home Depot and decided to spend a little more to get the primed wood, especially since I knew I was painting the shelves white I figured it would be a good time saver and probably only cost a dollar or two more. I had the guy there cut all of the pieces to the exact length for me. Then I came home and used wood glue to put them all together. We had a carpenter at our house at the time working on our fireplace remodel (pics to come as soon as it's completed as Pinterest was my main sourse of inspiration!) and he had a nail gun. I kept thinking I should ask him if I could borrow his gun, and considered using it after he was gone etc... but I felt wrong just using it and he seemed so busy during the day that I hated to bug him... so I went to option #2 and bought my own nail gun!!! Technically I've had a nail gun for a couple of years, but no air compressor to use it with, so it was new in the box... went and bought a compressor and ka-blam! My shelves were solid as a rock in a matter of 10 glorious minutes! If you have never used a nail gun I highly recommend it. AWESOME!!! I'm looking around our house for anything that seems a little loose or that could use some trim... ka-blam! Problem solved. Naturally while using the nail gun I wore safetly goggles and my pink hard hat - mostly because they are awesome.

I had family over and wanted their thoughts on how high to hang the shelves etc.. and was holding them up on the wall when Andrew came over un-prompted and started trying to put his books on the shelves!!! SHUT UP! They aren't even up yet and he already likes them!?! Not sure which is more awesome, the kid or the shelves!

But I digress... once the shelves were constructed I spent about an hour doing some very light sanding along the cut edges, wood filling over the nail gun holes and painting the shelves. This was the longest part of the job, and could be done much faster if you spray painted the shelves. But I wanted to match the trim paint in our house and had that in a can, so I went with that. I also used a brush because I had one handy, but a small foam roller would have been a lot faster... the one I had was full of dried paint from my last project (oops)and it was too late to go to the store that night to get another. Not a major time suck, but if you're going to go get the boards anyway, get a foam roller and be done faster :)

I left the shelves to dry for a few days in the garage (then realized that I hadn't painted the edges enough so touched them up and left them for 24 more hours... you can skip this step by being a little more careful when you paint, or as mentioned before, using spray paint, a roller etc...). Anywho... just trying to be helpful and learn the lessons for you :)

Once the shelves were dry it was time to hang them. Because I wanted to hang so many in a fairly small space I felt that making sure I had the spacing right was important. I was probably a lot more detailed than necessary, but they went up quickly and I AM SO HAPPY WITH HOW THEY TURNED OUT, so maybe it was worth the extra steps. I took a sewing tape measure and taped it to the wall... then I used painters tape to mark where I wanted the shelves on both walls... I played with the spacing a bit and was able to move the tape around to figure it out etc... see pictures below to understand what I am talking about. Once I was happy with the placement of the shelves I kept the tape measure on the wall and used it as my vertical guide the whole time. Next I found the stud and ran a piece of painters tape along the stud so we wouldn't have to keep finding it over and over again as we hung shelves on top of each other. With a shelf and a level in my hands and the power drill and a screw in my hubby's hands we had all 9 shelves up in about 30 minutes. I didn't bother painting over the screws because the books cover them so eh.... if it bugs me I can always fix it later.

While Chris gave little man a bath I took the 8 bazillion books we have all over the house and started arranging them. THEY LOOK AWESOME!!! And, most importantly they were a big hit with the little man! After his bath I asked if he wanted to read a book and then showed him the shelves. He said "wow!" and then we spent about 20 minutes reading new books. He kept jumping off of my lap to check out a new one and would bring it over to me, then see another he was excited about and would take the books and put them back on the shelves (SERIOUSLY!) and bring me another one! It was a great moment :) I put the paper books up higher so he can't reach them yet, and all board books on the bottom shelves so he can explore those on his own as well. Such a great project, so easy and so rewarding! HOORAY FOR PINTEREST!!!! (and shout out to the Just A Girl blog where this awesome idea came from!)

Friday, January 6, 2012

Wait! Don't throw away your Christmas cards!

Christmas Card Book

I LOVE this idea! I always hate throwing away people's great Christmas Cards at the end of the season, but I've never known what to do with them. Problem solved! This year I used this idea I found on Pinterest and turned all of my favorite photo cards into a book. I put our family's Christmas card on the front and tied all of the cards together with ribbon (I didn't have the metal loops handy). It takes up almost no space in our Christmas decoration storage and next year we can look at what all of our friends and family were up to a year ago. I found some cards I had from last year and made another book, and then made a third book that I'd saved from many years past. It was so fun to see how we've all grown.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Pinterest, you are my New Year's Resolution!

I discovered the awesomeness that is Pinterest several months ago and spent hours upon hours exploring and pinning awesome idea after awesome idea. Then I realized I hadn't actually done anything other than created one heck of an impressive to-do list. So around Thanksgiving I decided that 2012 was going to be my year of doing, not just pinning and planning. I figured then a good resolution for me would be to do at least one idea I've pinned a week. Seems like a resolution I could actually keep up with and think of all of the stuff I'd get done! Christmas made it really easy to get started and I've already used many of the ideas I found. Here are some of my favorites. Off to a running start...

Vodka Gummy Bears

I did vodka soaked gummy bears and jack daniels soaked gummy coke bottles. YUM and YOWZA all at the same time. Not sure what went wrong, but instead of gummy bears/bottles at the end I had two mason jars that were solid gummy shots. No problem, we got some spoons and let our friends dig in. The shots were STRONG... two spoons later I was feeling it. Not sure if this is something I'd make on a regular basis (what with being out of college for a bit now) but it's definitely a fun experiment! Enjoy!

Rocky Road Crockpot Cake

I made this cake for my family in Colorado over Thanksgiving. It got rave reviews from those who were able to stay up late enough to try it. I didn't take altitude into my calculations and it was no where near ready when it was supposed to be, but I let it cook longer, and longer, and longer. It was great the next day too. I'd be tempted to try it again now that we're out of the mountains, but without 20 people to help me eat it I can't justify it. I recomend giving it a shot though... oh and I used almond slivers instead of walnuts. Highly recommend!

Glowstick Bowling

We had a neighborhood chili cook off and we needed some activities for the kids after dark. Glow in the dark bowling seemed like a great way to go. In reality the bottles didn't really knock over well like pins should and the kids were over it pretty quick... but a new, and better idea was born. Glow stick ring toss! Glow bracelets were tossed onto some glow sticks stuck in the ground sort of like horseshoes. It was a great twist on this pinterest idea. Hm... maybe I should have pinned it?

Fall Photos

I saw this adorable pic of a white dog in fall leaves... hey wait, I have an adorable white dog, and a backyard full of leaves. Done and done!

Elf on the Shelf (aka Twinkle)

After seeing a few million fun pictures of others' elves around their houses we put a call into Santa to get our own special friend! We had so much fun and turned to Pinterest regularly for inspiration!

Advent Activities

I loved this idea! Instead of candy or a present each day to count down to Christmas we had advent activities. (ie baking Christmas cookies, watching a Christmas movie, doing a random act of kindness for a stranger, donating a toy and singing Christmas songs at the top of our lungs!) I'm looking forward to making this a family tradition for many years.

Christmas Ball Wreath

I don't actually remember which pin inspired this, but I have been looking for the right wreath for our door forever and never found it. So, this year I made one and I love it! Lots of balls, hot glue, super glue and one steering wheel cover (hey it was the right size and for sale at the same store as the balls) and ta-da!

Felt Christmas Tree for the Kids

I saw this idea and had to make one for my little man. Felt sticks to itself, so he can decorate and undecorate his own tree over and over. Undecorating seemed to be his favorite this year :) To keep it looking nice no matter how it was decorated I hot glued the star and gifts into place. Super easy, and super fun!

Wine Cork Ornaments

Easy, cute and a great hostess gift with a bottle of wine for Christmas.

The Best Cookies Ever

These are my all time favorite Christmas cookies and I haven't had them in several years because I couldn't find the receipe.

Pinterest - The gift that keeps on giving!

Months ago I saw these earrings on pinterest and thought they were great. Simple, beautiful, sparkly - what more could one ask for? I showed my hubby and what a wonderful surprise for me when I opened a Christmas gift from him and there they were! I had completely forgotten about them or that I'd ever shown them to him. Merry Christmas!