Category Archives: Diy

Setting A Few Home Goals

home goals J and I have been in our rental home for about 7 months now.  We signed a pretty long lease, so we still have one year and two months left here.  We aren’t crazy about where we live.  The neighborhood is great and it’s close to highways, but it’s just not the ideal home.  Our yard isn’t fenced in and with 2 dogs it isn’t very fun letting them out.  The walls are stark white and haven’t been painted in a while by the looks of it.  Plus there are like a million stairs, but that’s actually a good thing for us.

I am no longer going to focus on the not-so-great parts of where we live.  I’m setting some goals to work towards the next few months so our final year feels more like home.

Here go – the expectations.

1) design a gallery wall about the couch
2) hang fabric on the wall behind the TV and create a letter “R” gallery wall
3) stain the coffee table and side table
4) paint the DVD stand
5) create a calming desk space
6) rearrange furniture in the guest room
7) slipcovers for the couch and futon

Simple DIY projects. I’m pretty excited and have been planning what I want it to look like.  Now just to pick one project and do it.

I’m thinking the one that will make the most difference…. I’m going to pick out some fabric and hang it on the wall behind the TV.  Let’s do this thing!

The Perfect Gallery Wall

tips for creating a gallery wall

I love a good gallery wall, they are eclectic and a good way to express my personality. Which obviously consists of a whole lot of mis-match items that when combined create something beautiful.

Now that we are FINALLY in our new place and most of the boxes are unpacked, it was time to hang some pictures.  I promised J that I would keep his beloved fish that was caught by grandpa and passed down the family.  I needed items that can balance out the fish and make it look like it belongs on the wall.  Not like I just stuck it in the corner, behind a door to say that I was good partner because it was on a wall.

create a gallery wall Here are some tips for creating a gallery wall that is perfect:

1) find pictures that are unlike each other – either having different frame types, coloring, or are pictures of landscape, sculptures, and people.
2) lay your arrangement on the floor.  Play with it and make sure you love it.  It took me awhile to get it just right.  A lot of frames came in and out of this arrangement.
gallery wall tips3) get someone’s opinion.  I asked J what he thought before  putting one nail into the wall.  Not that he actually cared what it looks like, but it was nice to have that affirmation.
4) start nailing it! We measured out the wall space to find the middle, then measured out the arrangement to find the midpoint.  Match those two up and start hanging.
5) stand in awe of your awesome gallery wall.

creating a gallery wall

Cheers!

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Homemade Oatmeal Bath for dogs

homemade oatmeal bath

A homemade oatmeal bath for dogs can soothe itchy, dry skin from allergies.

homemade oatmeal bath

My poor pup, Maggie has been suffering from itchy skin for way too long.  I even resorted to covering her skin with an old Halloween t-shirt so that she couldn’t scratch.  How embarrassing for her!  I could just imagine her at the dog park with another dog giving her a funny look like, “girl, don’t you know it ain’t halloween?” and then Maggie sheepishly going, “ya, my mom hates me for some reason.”   Then all the other dogs would gather around her laughing.. I’m picturing Rudolph not being picked for any reindeer games here.  Ya, I don’t know why I’m on a holiday theme today.

Anyway… That wasn’t going to happen.  No dog was going to make fun of my Maggie!

I did research and found a homemade oatmeal bath that I could use the oats I bought for the Healthy Breakfast Bar Recipe.  So to me that was win-win.  I didn’t have to go buy anything.

homemade oatmeal bath

All you need is 1 cup of oats (quick or regular) blended in a food processor or blender.  Mix the oat powder in a luke warm bath.

homemade oatmeal bath

I took a plastic cup and poured the mixture over Maggie for about 10-12 minutes.

That’s it.  No rinsing.  A simple homemade oatmeal bath.

I noticed an immediate difference; however, she was amazed by her smell for awhile.  Maybe it was too close to food… I don’t know.  Overall it worked and that’s all that matters.

Oh and just a fair warning this homemade oatmeal bath is a pain to clean up out of the tub if you don’t process the oats to a fine enough powder.  Don’t say I didn’t warn ya!

Need another use for the large oatmeal that you bought?  I adapted a great, super easy recipe for an oatmeal breakfast bar.

Cheers!

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DIY Repellent Spray for Flies

How would you like a DIY repellent spray for your outdoor space?

J and I are determined to use our backyard to the fullest this summer.  We love that it is fenced in, the patio is covered, and we especially love our new patio set.  That’s the icing on the cake!

Last week I talked about repelling flies in our backyard here. J and I have worked on another home DIY treatment to rid our backyard of flies.  A repellent spray for our patio furniture was what we were looking for.

Ingredients:

1) Pine-sol
2) Water
3) White Vinegar

In a spray bottle you want to mix 1 part Vinegar with 2 parts Pine-sol and 2 parts Water.  Spray this mixture onto the patio furniture.  I could instantly see how this spray was working.  And I liked it!

DIY Repellent Spray for Flies

DIY Repellent Spray for Flies

Then I got a little carried away … I started spraying the siding of our house.  It worked!  One downfall of using this spray is the smell.  It can be a bit overwhelming.  Mainly smells like pine-sol, but that’s not a smell that I want lingering around for a long time.

But overall I love, love, love this repellent spray!  I’m thinking that I will keep a bottle mixed and ready to go.

What products do you use around your home to repel flies?

Cheers!

[hupso]

Planting Lavender and Mint

repel flies

Nothing better than adding a little bit of greenery around the back patio.  J and I took a trip to the local nursery and found some plants to add to our yard.

First, lavender, which is probably some of my favorite.  Then we added some mint.  After some research we found that mint was great to repel insects because of the odor it puts off.

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Of course these plants didn’t seem to be too time consuming for me.  Both needs to be watered every other day and the plants crave sunshine, which we have ample amounts of.

Here’s what you need:

1) planters – I used one for each plant, a 12″ for lavender and 8″ for the mint.  You want the mint to have more of a shallow pot because of their roots.
2) gravel
3) potting soil
4) gloves

The project took about 30 minutes to finish.

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First, fill the bottom portion of each pot with gravel. This addition will help with drainage.

plants

That’s it. Pretty simple and makes a great addition to any backyard. I can’t wait to keep adding plants and flowers to make our yard a little more homier.

Cheers!

How to Remove Pet Odor from Area Rugs

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Alright, I have two dogs and okay, my area rug in the family room started smelling a bit.

It happens when you have a puppy that is learning how to be house-broken.  Not to mention this said puppy is absolutely terrified of people and has a problem holding it in when she gets scared.  It’s hard to be upset about being scared, but I can be upset that my brand new, gorgeous rug was starting to smell.

Finally, after buying carpet cleaner after carpet cleaner I learned of this neat little trick that worked perfectly.  So, I thought that I would pass it on to you.

What you’ll need:

1) The rug you want to clean
2) An area outside to layout the rug in the sunlight
3) Spray bottle
4) White Vinegar
5) Water
6) Hose
rug
First, you want to soak your rug with the hose.  I like to use a good amount of water pressure to make sure to break up any dirt.
ingredients
Second, spray down the rug with your vinegar solution (1 part vinegar and 3 parts water)

Third, let dry in the sun.  I think the heat from the sun really helped get rid of the smell.

Voila!  Easy, simple and completely doable.  The rug is as good as knew and our house smells wonderful.

Cheers!

Wee Bit Excited

So, I might be just a little too giddy about my new adventure that I told you about the other day (here).  If you are in need of some new paper goods, then check out my shop over on Etsy.

I was so excited that I took a screenshot of my listing in the search results for my undated planner/organizer.

Screen shot 2013-05-23 at 12.58.21 PM

Thanks for all the support!

Cheers!

I said “Yes!”

keep-calm-we-got-engaged-1

It’s official, J and I are engaged!

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I still get a big, goofy smile on my face when I say that sentence. I have been in la-la land planning, dreaming the perfect wedding.

I hope to share ideas and DIY projects that we will be incorporating into our wedding.  So far, I’ve ordered a few items from Etsy.  A lovely save-the-date sign from ArmyMOMOfTwins for our engagement photo session and because her signs were just too hard to pass up I also ordered a Mr. and Mrs. sign for our reception chairs.  Check out the save-the-date sign here and the reception chair signs here.

I had a hard time deciding which projects that I wanted to make myself and which ones I would order from Etsy or have someone else do.  I finally reached a decision maker that was too hard to argue with… If it is going to cost more to get the materials needed to make it than it would to purchase (including shipping costs) than I would order it.  It was simple money-saving tactics that persuaded me.  I don’t need a bunch of paint, ribbon, and other items that I will not use for another project.

I hope to share my projects, ideas, and final outcomes throughout the planning process.  We have about 9 months till the wedding, so I have some work cut out for me.

Cheers,

Mere

photo credit

Check Marks for Fall

fall

Now that it is finally starting to feel like fall around the heartland I can create my fall to do list.  Here are a few of the things that I cannot wait to cross off with my favorite season of the year.

1) Ghost Tour of the historic Pythian Castle here in Springfield.

2) Carve a pumpkin.

3) Host a ‘family’ Thanksgiving dinner with J and the pup.  Since are families live 3 hours apart it will be hard to spend time together on the actual day, so we have hopes of celebrating together – just our little family.

4) Update my wardrobe with a few new chunky cardigans and eye catching scarves.

5) Spend some time reading something out of enjoyment and not necessity.  First up – Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.

6) Complete a few crafts that I have been putting off, including my new nail polish display rack.

7) Start researching a new home to rent this coming Spring.

8) Become a bit more organized with my budgeting.

9) Drive to my absolute favorite in the world Apple Butter Festival in Kimmswick, MO

10) Develop some new post ideas and tutorials.

Now that fall has officially arrived, what are your plans?

Breathe in, breathe out

Red & Peace

red & peace.

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studying for an E-Marketing test. I know all about this chapter on Social Media… some would like to call me “addicted to all forms of social media.”

PinterestTwitterTumblrFlickr – Bloglovin

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My Empire … My Rules by OPI

I have this tendency to do a DIY manicure at least once a week. Sometimes, though, if I have extra time or if I’m stressed (like I was this past week) I can fit in 2 manicures.  Then when the color dries on my nails and that topcoat goes on – all is right with the world.  Call me crazy, but it relieves the stress.  And since it only seems to relieve stress for just a minute I like to keep a bottle of polish near by.