Monday, February 27, 2012

Joining the Chalkboard Craze

It seems like every blogger in town has done something with chalkboard paint.  I've seen chalkboard walls, chalkboard wine glasses, chalkboard appliances and pretty much anything and everything in between.  So as
you might have ascertained by the title there...I plan on joining them.  :-)

My little chalkboard project involves a cabinet door.  For some reason, the previous owner had several cabinet doors stored in the garage.  They look brand new and they don't match any of the sized cabinets I my best guess is that they were some sort of snafu when the cabinets were being installed.  Again, just guessing here but I like to think that Hubby and I are not the only ones to create snafus. ;-)
Spare Cabinet Door

Anyway, this cabinet door is a perfect size for making a chalkboard.

I bought the cheap-y paint from Home Depot and I think it cost around $5.  You can get some more expensive stuff that can be brushed on....and if I were doing a larger area (like a wall in a playroom) then I would consider it, but for this little project --cheap is good.

Anyway, I just taped off the edges and sprayed it on...that easy. I didn't really think that you needed to see pics of this...right?

To hold my chalk I bought this handle from Martha Stewart's collection at Home Depot.  It was $7 which I thought was ridiculous but it seemed like the best option for the aforementioned chalk holding.  :-)
Okay, so I guess I should of taken a pic of the underside of this thing (the part that will hold the chalk...duh).  Well I never professed to be a brainiac.  blah.

To hang this bad boy up, I removed some picture hangers from a mirror that I had on hand (you know how they always give you an option to hang a mirror horizontally or vertically)...well that saved me from buying any picture hangers...Woot!  I didn't take a pic of that either....but ya'll know what I am talkin about.

So here she is in all her glory:

Finished chalkboard2
I hung her right inside the entrance of my when we run out of something, we can quickly jot it down while it is fresh in our minds.  I am so excited to start using this thing!  My little pre-Alzheimer's brain just doesn't hold as much info as it used to and it never fails that I forget something at the store because I think I will remember whatever it is and of course I never do!  Whew!  How do you like that for a run-on sentence?

Anywhoo, if I didn't have this door on hand, I think I would have seriously considered doing the same thing to one of my existing cabinet doors (but on the inside of course).  Just puttin' that out there.
What about you?  Have you joined the chalkboard craze or would you like to?  Do tell.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Introducing My "Cubby"

My sister Allison recently coined the term "ninafied".  It is an adjective that means "to glam up" tehehehe--my interpretation of course!  Now I know that this term will never reach the proportions of "tebowing" or anything like that, but I really would like the Urban Dictionary people to take note.  ;-) little office (aka cubby) needs to be ninafied

Here are a few pictures of where all the magic of this blog (and the paying of bills...snooping on realtor sites... and facebooking, etc.) happen:


This pic just shows that I have a "notch" in my cubby that will be significantly different in the "after" shots.

My cubby used to be a kitchen pantry but the previous owners of this house changed it into a small, very small, tiny office.  When we first looked at the house, I told Hubby that the little office would have to be the first thing we change...I needed a pantry! you can see, it didn't get changed.  Since the Hubs works out of the house part of the time (and is the only one in this household who actually earns income) he has priority over the "real" office space.  This means that I would end up with my laptop sitting at the breakfast bar.  Its not that big of a deal but when I pay the bills or work on our budget or can get messy...and neither of us likes a mess. didn't take long before I decided that the tiny pantry office would be a good place for me to call my own.

Now if you have been following along with this blog, then you know that I recently decorated his office in a somewhat masculine decor (except for the sheers  LOL).  Well, my cubby is going to be the exact opposite....I plan on femm-ing it up! 

So stay tuned will probably take me at least a month to get this space ninafied but no worries, I will share the masterpiece when it is done!  Until then, I have a couple craft projects I will be working on and sharing.

So do you have a space that you've ninafied, or bethafied, or (insert your name)afied lately?  Do share!
I will be linking up with:  Fingerprints on the Fridge

PS:  Dang!  Spell check is having a field day with this post!  :-)

Monday, February 20, 2012

What the Heck is Going On?

I have decided to institute a new feature on this blog.  About once a month, I will be ranting.  I know no one likes a complainer, but sometimes things just need to be aired out.  I promise, I will keep my rants to something housing related and in most cases they will be less than serious in nature.   

However, today's rant is a serious one...because I am REALLY ticked off over this:

Really?? Get PAID to do a short sale?  WTH?????  Who exactly is sponsoring this?  I went to the website and it alludes to the fact that the banks may pay you to get out of your house...even if your payments are not in arrears.  Again, WTH???

Oh and apparently the same company will fix your credit, too.  I guess 20k is not enough to lure people in:  Come to us and we will pay you to lower the values of every other house in your neighborhood AND fix your credit too.  Wow...Un-Freaking-Believable.   This better not be a secret government program...I will really lose it then :-).

Okay, let me be clear here....if you have had to do a short sale or lost your home to foreclosure because of some type of hardship (loss of job, nasty divorce, medical issues, etc) than I feel for you, I really do.  And I certainly hope that your situation gets better soon, but for people to start getting paid up to 20 thousand dollars to abandon their homes with or without a legitimate reason: well that is just wrong! 

The housing market is still in decline (especially here in Florida) and the number of abandoned homes in my neighborhood is shocking, the last thing we need to do is reward people to walk away.   I am willing to bet that at least 50% of the people in my neighborhood have mortgages that are underwater but yet they continue to pay faithfully each month knowing that some day it will get better.  If they all decided to take the money and run, what would happen then? 

This housing crisis will never end with programs like this going on...I don't even know if this is a legitimate program, but the one thing I know for sure is it needs to be investigated.  This little blog is not much, but I am trying to do my part to get the word out.  Someone out there is getting scammed. I the only one that is ticked off by this?  Am I overreacting?  Please share your thoughts.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

El Cheapo Cabinet Organization Part Deux

How did that title grab you?  English, Spanish, French all in one concise phrase...I want everyone to feel welcome here :-)

Anyway, my last post on organization showed you how to use cheap curtain rods to secure some of your cabinet "stuff" --in my case:  pot and pan lids, as well as some cookie sheets.  Today's version is more about the upper cabinets...or cupboards as my mom calls them. Photobucket
As you can see in my picture here....this cabinet stores a lot of miscellaneous items--including my measuring cups.  I actually have three sets of plastic measuring cups in there: two white sets and a pink set.  The white sets have been taken off of their ring and guess what?  Both sets have missing pieces, namely the 1 cup measuring cup!  Seriously, where does this stuff disappear to?  Because of the mysterious missing pieces, I have kept the pink set in tact (on a ring)...which is sort of a pain when I try to use it....thus bringing me to the organizational tool of the day:

Cup holders!!
. Cupholders

Before I move on, I would like to say that I think it is a bit ridiculous when you go to the store and can only find white, gold or red cup holders on the shelf.  No silver, bronze, or black.  Really, Lowes?  Get with the program: no one uses gold any more.  Please have your corporate buyers refer to this post.  Geez!

Because of the lack of appropriate finish, I was forced to paint the little buggers, good thing I had some brown paint on hand.....I know no one will really ever see them but I am a weirdo like that. 

Anyway...I am going to jump to the finished product:

Sweet eh?  No more searching for the right size.  Also, I will know immediately if a cup goes missing...especially handy if my bachelor children have been visiting lately.  :-)

To attach the cup holders to the door panel I used paint sticks that were cut to size and stained.  I then used two sided velcro because 1) I had it on hand and 2) somehow in my warped, little mind I thought it would mean that I wouldn't have to put permanent holes in my cabinets.  Nope.  To secure the cup holders they had to be screwed into the cabinet....I almost had a major snafu, so be careful if you try this yourself....the inside panel of the door is fairly thin (at least at my house it is).

Since 40 cup holders come in a pack, I also used them for what they are designed for...holding cups!  Check out my current "coffee" cabinet. 
You may notice that none of my cups match and 90% of them are Christmas themed....yep, that is how we roll in this house!

I think this will work out a little nicer, don't you think?
At least now they won't just roll out of the cabinet on their own when the door opens....I've lost many good mugs that way.

Anyway, this fun little project cost less than $4.  I got the inspiration from infarrantlycreative who did something similar (but a little nicer) to her own cabinets. 

Well...that's all I got for today people...rock on.  :-)

Monday, February 13, 2012

Happy Valentines Day!

Valentines Decoration
Yep...this is it for the Valentine's decorations this year...kind of weak, huh?

Let me be the first person to wish you a Happy Valentines Day!!  I know Valentines is not until tomorrow but:  "If you're not first, you're last."  tehehe    Does anyone know what movie that quote is from?  If you do, I bet you have boys in your household.

Anyway, Hubs and I don't make a big deal out of Valentines Day....honestly, it just boils down to this:  We would rather spend our money on something substantial...not on flowers or candy or $4 cards.  And as far as going out to dinner on V no...neither of us wants to fight the crowd.  Dang we've turned into a couple of old folks!  Don't get me wrong, we loved the hoopla surrounding Valentines Day when we were younger, but its just not our thang anymore.  So our typical celebration is to make a nice meal at home and conclude it with some type of decedent dessert (yum)!

We have been doing this for years (seriously: years)...that is why I thought it was quite amusing when Hubby and I had the following conversation last week:

Note:  We had just settled into bed to watch our typical Wednesday night ABC lineup: The Middle, Suburgatory, Modern Family and then Happy Endings....every single show on this night was related to Valentines Day. 

The first show comes on and Hubby says, "Did I miss Valentines Day?"  "No dear," was my reply.

Second show starts and Hubby says, "Is today Valentines Day?"  "No dear," I said again.

Third show: "Are you sure today is not Valentines Day?"  "Yes, I am sure," I responded.

By the fourth and last show, I get a: "Then why aren't you talking to me?" in a sad, little, pathetic voice.   "Hmmm...Maybe because I am watching my shows AND playing on the iPad at the same time.  Geez, Valentines is next week...relax".  Sometimes I am mean.  :-(

So Hubby, if you are reading this:  Happy Early Valentines Day!!!   Tonight, I promise to give you my full attention, talk nicely, and I wont bring the iPad to bed  ;-). 

For everyone else, I hope you have a wonderful, love-filled day. Does anyone have any exciting plans for the big V day?  Do share.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Cheapo Cabinet Organization

Hello friends!  As I mentioned in my last post, my kitchen cabinets are a mess.  If they were human, I would classify them as bipolar...clean one day and trashed the next--a never ending cycle.  So in an effort to keep them on the cleaner side for longer periods of time, I found an inexpensive organization solution.

Here is a looksie at the current condition of my cabinet innards:

Don't mind the metal tubing...this cabinet is directly under the cook top.


Not a pretty sight....

So the 97 cent solution to this problem is:

wait for it....

wait for it....

wait a little more...

Voila':  Cheap curtain I said, .97 each at Wally World.


I had some brown spray paint on hand, so I decided to glam them up a bit despite the snickers from the peanut gallery (aka Hubby). 


So here they are at work: 

cabinet organization

Cheap cabinet organization

Come on now...isn't this a great idea?  Kudos to the person who shared this on Pinterest.  Unfortunately, I saw it about a month ago and didn't actually "pin" I have no idea to whom I should give credit...but by all means, if you know the genius that was thinking out of the box, please share so that I can give credit where it is due.

And by the way...I know I mention Pinterest in practically every post...sorry, but I just can't help it....apparently I am afflicted with this condition:
ha ha...totally me.

So now that the worst of the bottom cabinets are straightened up are the cupboards.  In the meantime, talk to me people! Give me some ideas! :-)

Monday, February 6, 2012

Mini Kitchen Renovation Before and After

Hello my peeps! The last little puzzle piece (the island light) has been added and now the mini kitchen renovation is complete! I am going to get right down to business and show you some before and afters:

kitchen before

kitchen after

breakfast bar before

breakfast bar after

crown molding before

contrasting crown molding

                        Kitchen with contrasting molding


Did you guys notice my fabulous wine glass chandelier?
Decorative, fun and functional storage....HECK YEA!!
Love it!

In case you haven't been following along, let me review the changes (click to enlarge):
So there you have it folks. Woot! My next project is to try and organize my cabinets...they are a mess. If anyone has any great organizational tips...please share!!  I definitely will be perusing Pinterest for ideas as well ;-).

I am also gonna start trying my hand at linky parties...I know for sure I will be joining:  and so please check out these ladies sites...good stuff!

Ciao for now!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Kitchen Tile is Up!

Who knew it would be so difficult to pick out tile?  Unlike the issue with my wallpaper--where I had difficulty finding anything I like--there are so many good choices out there!

Hubby and I are particularly drawn to glass tiles; they seem to be all the rage these days.  It would honestly be easier and quicker for us to pick out the ones we didn't like verses the ones we do.  We also like all the natural stone finishes...they are classic and go with any decor.   I don't know if you have looked around your home improvement store lately but geez, I could go crazy in there! 

Even with all the great glass tile choices, we ultimately decided to go with natural stone:

Here is the problem with the glass tiles that I liked:  they were sort of dark.    As you probably know by now, I like dark finishes, therefore, this is not normally a problem-- but lets face it, EVERYTHING in my kitchen is dark:  I have dark cabinets, dark counter tops, dark flooring ... the last thing I need to be doing is installing a dark backsplash.  I don't want to have to turn the light on every time I enter the kitchen!  Because of this, the stone was a good fit for us.  It is a neutral and light while it doesn't stand up and say "hey look at me" it still adds some character and interest. 

It was fairly easy to put up and we didn't even need to rent a tile saw.  We just used a special bit on the dremel to cut anything that was needed.  The best part of this stone: NO GROUT NEEDED!   Um..YEA!!  It does need to be sealed though, but that should be fairly quick and simple.

So here is a quick peek at our accomplishments:

I don't know if you noticed, but we also changed the electrical outlets to black.  I know what you are thinking...the general rule is to try and disguise the outlets, not make them stand out.  I want you to know that I subscribe to that theory 95% of the time but this is one of those times that I don't.  The original white outlets looked terrible, and the almond/vanilla colored outlets that the big box stores carry were a no-go too.  So I went with black and yes, they stand out.  I like 'em. :-)

Back to the stone was so easy to install that we did this too:

We tiled the built-in entertainment center in the family room (which is adjacent to the kitchen).

I bet you didn't see that one coming!  Well I sure didn't, so I know you didn't!!! BAHAHAHA  When we started tiling the kitchen, I had no idea that we would even think about tiling this thing!   Since the tile went up fairly quickly, and we had some left over, we thought "what the heck?"  It was actually Hubby's idea.  Love it!

The entertainment center was painted a dark brown before (which we did about a month ago) and neither of us particularly liked it that this was really a no brainer.  Here are a few more pics of that room.

I just love these little fisheys and all their I had to share!

So there you have it...progress is happening.  The only thing left is to install a light over the island.  I ordered a light from Lowes over 10 days ago and it is still not here.  Blah...   But with any luck, I will have the full reveal for my next post. 

So while we are waiting, does anyone have any good ideas on how I can hide those wires that can be seen in the built in?  Now that we got it all gussied up with stone tiles, I need to see about getting rid of those obnoxious wires...maybe a false wall?  I don't know.   Suggestions please!

Until then...I will be linking up with:  Check that site out!