Sunday, May 22, 2011

Fresh Sheets...

ok, who loves making beds? 

i kind of do.  and i kind of don't.

i'll be really honest.  when i make a bed, i almost always pretend that i'm making it for my guests who are coming to stay at my bed and breakfast.  i've been making beds for my imaginary guests for about 20 years now.  and if i'm not making the beds for them, i pretend i'm making all the beds in the model home i've just designed.
i'm 44.
i'm weird.
i know. 

i actually don't mind making beds, but what i don't like is getting the sheets out of the linen closet.  just the thought of that makes me want to sleep in my less-than-fresh bed one more night.

 i don't know about yours, but my linen closet rarely stays organized. 
 i do straighten it out (a lot), but it never seems to stay that way. 
 until now.

i took most of my tote bags (i have a thing for tote bags and have way too many of them) and actually put them to good use --
they now hold our many sets of sheets.
i didn't go so far as to label them, although that thought did cross my mind.  :)

so now when i want to change the sheets on our bed, i just grab the cute green and brown damask vinyl tote bag (a pier one find at $2) that holds our set of cream flannel sheets.  no more looking for thee matching pillow case among 17 other pillowcases strewn all over the shelf.

speaking of pillowcases, did you notice we have lots of pillows on our bed?   well, you may be a tad jealous when i tell you that my husband loves them!  he actually wants more on our bed.  like 10 more.  the guy has a thing for pillows.  whenever we check into a hotel, the first thing he does is order more pillows.   all for him.

we have 12 on our bed now.  8 are visible and 4 are hiding.
i'm shocked there's enough room for us to sleep!

me?  i just need one.  one king size feather pillow wrapped beneath a flannel pillowcase.  even in the summer.

ok, so that's just a little tip from my linen closet to yours.  
now the thought of changing sheets is kind of fun, huh?
just grab a tote bag and go.

...go pretend that your imaginary guests from england are arriving soon and 
staying at your b&b for the weekend.  maybe even leave them a little square of chocolate on their pillows.
i know.  
  i'm weird.

but while i have you in my clean bedroom (which it never is), i'll show you around a bit.

sorry.  the lighting is bad with the shutters closed.  the panels are from jc penney.  the wicker chairs are from pier one.  and the table between them is a roadside find.  i grabbed it two seconds before my girlfriend did!

my parents and i used to make and sell these trays.
and i have no idea who that young couple is in that silver frame!

i bought this old dresser from bungalow in agoura.
i love its large glass knobs.

i bought this old dresser at a garage sale on the way
home from a baseball tournament.  i asked a dad i had just met if 
he would drive it home for me in the back of his truck.  he said yes!
(thanks, greg!)

my husband has always bought me hatboxes over the years.
i recently saw a blog (can't remember which one) where she planted summer flowers in her hatboxes.  sooo cute!

this is my goodwill corner.  the oil painting was $3.  the basket on the shelf with the embroidered m was $2 (yes, it holds a fake ivy because a real ivy would get no sunlight at all).  and the large laundry basket in the foreground was $3.
(i'll tell you more about the sweet hand-painted plate on my next post).

i am blessed (as the sign reads) to have a warm bed to crawl into every night.
and am blessed to know the lord jesus as my savior.

now i lay me down to sleep.  i pray the lord my soul to keep.
if i should die before i wake, i pray the lord my soul to take.

when i think of my mom, i think of this prayer.
i think my grandma taught it to her.
i think i need to teach it to my daughter.

right after i change her sheets...

Monday, May 16, 2011

A New Dining Room for $16!

yes, you read that right!  $16!
(truth be told, it was a little more because I hired someone to paint it for me), but with a little "garanimal" shopping, "new" curtain panels and a can of paint, i love our new room.
remember those $8 curtain panels i bought last week?  well, they cost me a tad more than $8 because i decided to hang them in our dining room -- which then needed to be re-painted to go with the new $8 curtains (remember i told you it was a pretty shade of dark green?).  so those $8 curtains snowballed into re-doing our dining room.  and our den.  that certainly wasn’t my intention, but boy, do i love the results!  and the price!

come take a peek...

it’s now painted the same color as the rest of our house -- tickled crow by dunn edwards (i think it's retired now, but you can still ask for it).  
although i loved it before, i love it more now.  i just needed it to be lighter.  and brighter.  this lighter shade makes the dining room feel soooo much bigger.  much more peaceful.  i’m really loving my sage green with lots of whites and creams together -- and with just a touch of black.  i’m having a cream and black ticking slipcover made to cover the wood bench.  i can’t wait to show it to you when it’s finished.  i think it will be my favorite thing in the room.  me and fabric.  love it.

and speaking of fabric, notice the new curtain panels?   i took down my dark green toile panels that matched the dark paint and replaced them with these.  again, much more simpler.  and these days, i like simpler.

can't remember where this cute tray came from.  but i love it.
the little compote is from tx maxx.

i made these baskets of veggies years ago.  when we first bought our house, i dreamed of a kitchen filled with vegetables.  back then, i didn't eat them.  but i liked looking at them.  :)

i love setting the dining room table.  just for fun.
the green quilted placemats are from target.  on sale for $2.47 each.
the wicker chargers were $3 for all six!  
the green/white dishes are from marshalls.  the first set i bought for the house.
the glass salad plates are from an antique store.  six for $10.
and the fake apples are from tj maxx.

this is one of my favorite spots in the room.
i found this old frame at an antique store and had the mirror cut to fit.
my sister bought me the old soda crate for my birthday and an old rusty milk carrier holds jam jars filled with sand, seashells and candles.

i originally bought this old banana crate for my son's schoolbooks.  he didnt' really want it.  darn! so i had wheels added to it and now tuck my green toile pillows under the table.  and to think these pillows were headed for my garage sale.  what an idiot!

i replaced my old multi-color hook rug with this indoor/outdoor rug.  in fact, i have these throughout our entire house.  i originally bought two 8x10s for our backyard patio.  until the first one i put back there attracted every bird in our neighborhood to come by and pick it a part to make their nests.  i could never bring myself to put the other one out there so it's been in my garage for about five years.  it finally found a home.

i also found this pine frame in the garage too.  i painted it black, added some burlap and pinned three of my old postcards to it.  cheap and sweet.

ok, and see this basket?  this -- this! -- is what really started my house transformation.  i'm not sure why.  but once i brought this into the house, every room began to change.  i found it at homegoods for $29.  i didn't need it, but i loved it.  i put it in my cart and two women asked me if there were others.  i keep it in the dining room and throw all of our wayward stuff in it and at the end of the day, bring it upstairs to unload.  

so that's our new dining room.  

and you know i don't do all this decorating alone...

newmis helps choose fabrics ... and 

and twigs selects the floor coverings.
(my other assistant creamy was on a lunch break and napping on the stairs).

and though i don't have a picture of him, my amazing painter/handyman gregg thompson did all the hard work.  i'd love to share him with you (email or leave me a comment if you want him to do magic in your home too!)  i'm a very happy girl when gregg's white van is parked outside my front door.  some girls want a private chef or personal trainer.  not me.  i want my own painter/handyman!  

and when i finish one more project in the den, i'll show you around in there too.
so what colors are you loving right now?  tell me.  show me.  i'd love to know!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Everything In Its Place...

so by now, you may know i love spots to put things.  all things.  clutter drives me insane.  can't function anywhere near it.  so i thought i'd share some of my storage ideas with you.  
some pretty obvious.  some, not so obvious.

ok, so where do all of your batteries, lightbulbs, candles, matches, receipts and paid bills go?  why in a dresser, of course!

i love this old dresser.  it holds sentimental memories for me.  but i really love it because it's a storage workhorse.  some people, because it's placed in a dining room, would store silverware, china or table linens in it.  not me.

the top three drawers store receipts, batteries and paid bills.  the middle row stores small accessories, lightbulbs and craft supplies.  and the bottom row stores more lightbulbs and candles.  i actually have one whole drawer empty.  i love opening up an empty drawer.  such a treat!  i know, i know -- the small things in life make me very happy.

also in my dining room stands this $20 hutch ($20!) i bought from a fabric store.  it was a strange shade of blue with hideous knobs on it.  i painted it white and made a burlap skirt to hide a few things.  

oh, things like a blender, juicer, crock pot. 
 the usual things i rarely pull out to make my family a nice meal. :)

please don't notice that the burlap is still pinned in place.  one of these days, i actually need to get around to sewing and hemming it.  or not.

last week i found myself eliminating lots of little stuff
from around our house.  starting with the kitchen.

behind these glass cabinets were lots of little stuff: teacups, sugar bowls, gravy boats, vases, you know the stuff.  i couldnt' look at it anymore, even though i loved it all.
so i kept all the things that i could fill with flowers and bring to a friend, but tucked them inside old picnic baskets and yummy old things so i wouldn't be overwhelmed by it all.

i bought these old picnic baskets for about $5 and recently found this great old bread box without a lid for a song.  i love its blue color and rusty edges.

i also found this great metal thing (don't even know what it is) and charming old tool caddy (both from a beautiful mess in agoura).  they're my perfect shade of green!

and these are just a few things that are stored inside each item -- awaiting flowers and a friend's front porch.

after i took out all the little stuff and added the big stuff, something was missing.  so i got out my old box of postcards and tied one on to each of the old picnic baskets with twine.  first off, i love old postcards and secondly, they add a pop of color.

i keep them in their plastic sleeves to protect them and mounted them with double-sided tape onto a piece of cardboard.  
look at this one...

dated january 28, 1909!  notice the one cent stamp! and i love how it's addressed just to miss ida bone in iowa.  not even a street address!
how this postcard has survived more than 100 years is beyond me.  we can't even keep a photo in pristine shape for more than a week!

also in my kitchen is one of my favorite tables.  it reminds me of the table that stands in the lobby at the apple farm in san luis obispo.  their table looks just like mine, but they attached a skirt to the front of it to hide extra coffee mugs, napkins and plates.  you need to stay there -- they welcome you with hot apple cider and chocolate chip cookies after a long day of shopping in s.l.o.

so my daughter, who is a 24/7 crafter, loves to do her thing in our kitchen.  well, with that comes lots of googly eyes, felt, crayons, glue and paper.  where to store it all?  behind the skirt just like at the apple farm!

(notice the bulge towards the right?  
someone needs to do some spring cleaning don't you think?)

just a simple tension rod holds the skirt in place.
god bless tension rods!
notice it's actually sewn?  ta da!

and speaking of kids, my son is addicted to playstation.  what i'm not addicted to is the mess of wires that sits next to our television set.  so i found these two baskets with lids (love baskets with lids!) for $7 at a thrift store and now his playstation and wii stuff is hidden for all (i mean me) to see.

and my favorite piece in our family room is this old sideboard.  

not sure what other families would store in it, but we store our kids' socks in it!  yep, the top two drawers are filled with my kids' socks and the third drawer is filled with my daughter's hair accessories.  i'm guessing when we're trying to get out of the house in a hurry, having those items so close to the front door helps. the bottom cabinets are filled with lots of books.  

also by the front door is one of my favorite baskets.  not for what it looks like, but for what it stores and keeps out of sight.

my son's shoes!
he has a thing for shoes.  all colors.  orange.  lime green.  
none of them look (or smell!) that great, so in the box they go!

and last, but not least, our laundry room.

a very small room, but it has lots of storage.
this laundry room came with a large clothes rod.  but it was ugly to always see it and the clean clothes hanging on it.

so i made a curtain panel to hide it.  

and i share my laundry room with our three cats. 
and their cat food.  and their litter.
the huge litter bag from von's is on the floor behind the right side of the curtain panel and their cat food is stored in my old bread box.  all the extra cans are put into the top drawer of this little white table.

so, i think you can tell by this post that i like everything to have a place.  so i don't have to see it.
because when my house is in order, i feel calm.  and when i feel calm, with few distractions, i feel at peace to spend time in my home.  and be with God.  
with nothing distracting my heart from His.

i hope this gives you a few ideas to try in your own home.  
if it does, i'd love to hear (and see!) it.  
and remember, find baskets with lids!  

Friday, May 6, 2011

While I Was Just Looking...

ok, so i don't really need anything.  i just like looking in antique and thrift stores.  but while i was just looking this week, i found some really good stuff! 

come see what i found...

a beautiful platter with a pretty floral detail.
not exactly my shade of sage green, but i still love it.
and for $3.95, i really love it.

i found this wobbly pitcher for $1.  
i can see it filled with sand and an explosion of small flags
for the fourth of july.

i also found this 1970s brown
magazine stand.
i'm going to fix it up a bit and
place it in my dining room window filled 
with a large fern.  it was $8.

who needs an old rusty tackle box?
apparently i do.
i spied this from a distance (because it's 
my shade of green!) and i think i'll 
store my can't do cancer without god
necklace supplies in it for when i'm on the go.

didn't know until i got home that it was still filled with old fishing stuff.
and very, very old bait.  yeck!

found these two darling crystal lamps.
they're sooooo heavy!
$7.99 a piece!
i washed them as they were loaded with dust.
not sure where i'll put them, but i love, love them!
they take a night-light sized bulb.  so sweet!

i'm telling you, i hit the motherload today!

when i found these two curtain panels in perfect shape (and lined too!)
i wanted to scream with excitement.
they will be perfect in my dining room i thought.  i know they don't look like much here, but they're hanging in there right now, and they make me happy.  very happy.  and at $8 each,

and because my photo card is flashing "card full",
i'll have to show you next time my best find of the day.

  it's funny, when i'm on the hunt for something in particular,
 i usually can't find it.  
but when i run into a thrift store just for the heck of it, 
that's when i find gold.  

some would say junk.  i like to say gold.

happy gold digging!

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