St. Patrick’s Day with a Toddler

Today is St. Patrick’s Day. Mommy loves theme days. A lot. It means cute clothes, fun food ideas, and possibly crafts.

This is what I’d envisioned for our St. Patrick’s Day:

St. Patrick's Day crafts, food, and fashion

Thanks a lot, Pinterest, for filling my head with THESE gorgeous ideas. via: Stretching a Buck Blog, LushHome, whatdoiwear, momtastic, and Etsy

Roll eyes, snort, guffaw…that didn’t happen.

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Makeover Monday: Cheap & Easy Jewelry Organization

Necklaces:

Because our home has been utter chaos over the last week, I felt the need to assert some control over what I could. Ignited by that -AND- the need to do some spring cleaning, I tackled the rats’ nest that was my jewelry drawer. I didn’t want to spend any money, and use whatever I could find lying around, so I came up with this:

DIY necklace storage

A wire hanger + binder clips = necklace storage

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Resolve a Conflict in 3 Easy Sentences

The last few days have been really tough for me. Hubby overseas, my back went out, and the basement flooded with sewage.

Yeah, gross.

puppiez

Navigating that stress has been a challenge, since my best stress relief is exercise, which I CANNOT DO right now. SO. I may have lost my cool a little. Especially when the idiot insurance adjuster misread my contract and had me convinced for a few hours that the damage would not be covered. (Turns out, it was. Idiot.) Which brought me back to a trick I learned in high school.

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Makeover Monday: Shade Upgrade

I’ve mentioned before that we moved into a 107 year old house last summer, right? Well, the family who lived there before did a renovation in the late 1990′s…and that’s where the house has stayed since. I’m hesitant to embark on any major updates since we’re planning to do some renovations and upgrades soon and I don’t want to make anything that will end up being ripped out in a couple of months, but there are a few things on the list that can become a project. Mostly because they irritate the hell out of me, but partly because they might end up being part of the new design. The biggest constraint is to keep the budget small…as in, miniscule. So this week’s project was a small one, but kind of fun because I got to whip out my paints and experiment….

Upgrade the Shade

Our kitchen is pretty dark and has one small window facing North. The roller shade on it fits well and does the job to give us privacy from the next door neighbors but it was NASTY. Decades of dirty dish water spray and kitchen gunk discolored it. Plus, it was  a country-cottage style that I’m not terribly fond of. So, I decided to touch it up.

Roller shade DIY: before

Years of grime and exposure yellowed the bottom half. There’s no explanation for the design, though.

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Guest Post: Please Your Inner Child with Bedroom Decor

Hey gang! I’m super-excited to have my first guest post on home decor! Kathy Joe is a blogger from the UK, and she reached out to me a couple of weeks ago about writing for my blog. She’s a funny gal with some great ideas, so please, enjoy her post!

Guest post by Kathy Joe

A big hello to everyone! People call me Kathy Joe and they also call me as a decor fanatic. The reason is that I have come a long way with my passion to jazz up everything! I am extremely cheerful to be a guest here. Jennifer is a wonderful being for letting me do this. Please come visit me here.

Does your inner child cry out for a funky, welcoming and, let us be brutally honest here, childish bedroom? Do you reluctantly turn away from the soft furnishings and furniture in the children’s section, looking desultorily through the adult offerings with a glum resignation? If this sounds like you it is time to give your bedroom a guerrilla make-over dipping deep into your past likes and fancies! It is possible to make your bedroom look as though it has been created for a younger version of you without guests assuming they have stumbled into a real child’s room – which can be very awkward on a first proper date…

Polka Dots

Get dotty with your curtains! Polka dots are both cheerful and colourful, providing a subtle nod to childhood without being over the top, over-childish or sickeningly twee. Polka dot curtains can be made to measure for your bedroom, which means that you can choose exactly the right colour combinations to suit the rest of your décor.

Polka-dot curtains

Invest in a brightly coloured and gently clattering beaded curtain. Beaded curtains are usually used in place of a door, but they work well near the windows too. Having streams of beads flowing from the pelmet not only looks wonderful and sounds great (do make sure that you choose solid plastic beads as hollow or metal ones will make a dreadful noise with every passing breeze!) but will recall the many happy hours spent running your fingers through boxes of beads and buttons – oh, you know you did it, we all did!

Beaded curtain

Splurging in children’s curtains

Allow mythology a place in your décor scheme, either in the form of small ornaments or in the curtain fabric. While most girls outgrow their love of unrelenting pink by about the age of eight or nine, their love of unicorns and rainbows will last forever! (**Amen! ~Jen**) Splurge on some fabulous rainbow curtains to instantly boost and brighten the bedroom and your mood! For naive and chic children-themed curtains, my ultimate favorite place to grab them is Yorkshire Linen Co.

flutterby_pencil_pleat_curtains

Quirky Curtain Rings

If you are a bit shy of hanging bright and jaunty curtains, or feel that they are too ‘young’ for your bedroom, why not brighten up your regular ‘grown-up’ curtains with some quirky and appealing curtain rings? Buy a couple of packs (you will find them online or at most home décor outlets) and set to work adding a subtle but cheerful touch of youth to your bedroom curtains! For kinky and interesting curtain tie backs, I am a huge fan of Tie Back and Trim.

Letter It All Out

Go back to grade school with some vibrant alphabet curtains! With the immense range of fabrics available today you will be able to choose the fabric carefully to achieve a quirky look rather than a babyish theme. You can even buy plain curtains and letter them yourself, placing the letters in a way that is attractive and appealing to you.

https://d2d00szk9na1qq.cloudfront.net/Product/1e52d75a-0458-4cd0-92dd-792c81f52187/Images/Large_0278299.jpg

via Fabric.com

Funky Tie Backs

Again suitable for those who do not want to make too much of a child-like splash in the bedroom, tiebacks are discreet yet visible, allowing you to indulge in a trip down memory lane without being too obvious about it.

Fun Tie-Backs

Images via and via.

Think back to what made you feel happy and secure as a child, especially as regards to your bedroom and home. You are trying to capture the essence of childhood, secure, happy joie de vivre without retaining any of the immaturity of that time.

Thanks for the great ideas, Kathy Joe!

What youthful decor do you want to incorporate into your bedroom?

Makeover Monday: I Cabi-not Like This Cabinet

We bought our house last summer because it has some really lovely features. The hickory floors were clearly laid by hand with love. The cabinets are solid wood. The baseboards are gorgeous. And the family that rebuilt this home clearly loved it. I mean, they loved it A LOT. Like, a lot.

Our bathroom is a good example. 2 adults and 3 boys shared this room, and the vanity clearly received the tactile admiration of the whole family over and over and over again.

Bathroom vanity makeover

The badness is inspiring even worse puns.

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Oh Baby! It’s Tough Staying Organized with a Newborn

In the past couple of weeks, I’ve had several friends give birth to their second babe. In addition to making me nostalgic and teary-eyed, it reminded me how tough those early days can be. Back when kiddo was a newbie, I couldn’t remember anything. My brain was lumpy oatmeal. The feed-every-3-hours regime for the first few weeks was brutal, and that level of sleeplessness exceeded anything I’d ever experienced, even in during final exams in college! So once my head cleared, I realized things could be better if I got my sh*t together.

When we needed to leave the house for the inevitable doctor’s appointment, or grocery shopping, or eventually, just to to go out for a walk and get fresh air, I found myself writing the same list of supplies over and over again. And in my insomniacal haze, I often screwed up! And it was time-consuming to keep figuring it out! One time we were out with EIGHT onesies and NO diapers. I suppose we could have fashioned a 5-onesie-diaper in the case of a blowout, but that was not ideal.

The bag packing confusion was further compounded by my husband trying to “help” pack the bag, so we’d both end up shoving the same things in there, and neglecting the same things. Honestly, imperfect packing wasn’t the end of the world. Nobody died, nobody got hurt. Maybe someone would get a peep show if I forgot the nursing cover, or we’d have to rush home with a poop-covered onesie if there wasn’t a fresh one, but the perfectionists in us were ashamed when we didn’t have exactly what we needed when we left the house.

Diaper bag pack list

Eight onesies. No diapers. Big problem.

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