Chandelier Chain Cover Tutorial

May 27, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Decorating, Dining room, DIY

Making a Chain Cover Without Sewing

I knew that I wanted to make a chain cover for my new chandelier makeover, but I didn’t know how to do it. One of my problems is that I don’t have a sewing machine anymore.

chandelierSo… what did I do?  Of course…. I went to the internet to look.  My search came up with “In My Own Style” blog. She had an entire tutorial step by step.

I first wrote down the supplies I was going to need and headed to the store.

I found the fabric I wanted (be careful if it frays easily. Mine really did and I did a lot of clipping of little threads)

What you will need:

1) Fabric – Measure the length of the cord to cover and double it.  (I needed 16″ total in length)  It needs to be 7″ wide.
2) Sticky sided velcro (make sure long enough to go the length of your cord)
3) Fabric glue
4) Needle & thread to match fabric (don’t worry, not much sewing)

Here is how I worked – I took my laptop upstairs to my room and followed what to do …step by step.


1) Heat up your iron
2) Iron your fabric
3) Turn the fabric in 1/4″ on all side. Press as you go.

iron fabric


Get your fabric glue (or you can use iron on fabric adhesive)  This was the only brand that Joann Fabric’s has.

unique stitch4) Then apply a thin coat in between the 1/4″ folded edge. Press lightly and let it dry for a few minutes.

fabric glue

Once it has dried…thread your needle (and use a needle threader if you are as blind as I’ve become for close up work)


5) Make a single stitch the length of the fabric – down each side. This will be going over the 1/4 ” fold. Only use a single thread (don’t double your thread). Knot the starting side.

I kept my stitches about this same size. If you look back behind the needle you can see a couple of the stitches. This worked fine. It is ok to go smaller, but remember you are going to be using this thread to do your gathering. If you want your gathering a little smaller looking, then it might not be a bad idea to make your stitches smaller.

Knot the end side also.

6) Mark the length that you need your chain cover to be.  I laid the tape measure out on my table so I had a guide. I don’t have a fabric board that has nice measurements already on it. (Wish I did for something like this)

chandelier chain cover

7) Take the thread and on one end gently pull it (gathering fabric as you do).  I did a little on one side, then went to the other side. I didn’t want to have one side all gathered up and have them be really uneven.

8) Pull equally on both sides until the fabric measures the length you need.

I held mine up to make sure it looks like it will fit.

chandelier chain cover

I did not get a picture of applying the velcro. I needed all my hands.

Get your Velcro ready to be used.


9) Apply the sticky Velcro carefully along the edges of the fabric right over top the gathers.  I’m going to use one of Diane’s photos from In My Own Style. It helped me to understand that the velcro really would stick to the gathered edges.

In my own styel

Pay attention to what side you are sticking the Velcro to. One has to go on the finished side and one has to go on the unfinished side.  I just rolled the fabric so that it would be right side out and pretended to wrap it around my chain. You can easily tell which side to stick the velcro on when you do this.

10) Clip any loose threads or frays you might still have. Attach the chain cover to the chandelier and position it to best cover the entire chain.

chandelier chain cover

I love how this turned out!

chandelier chain cover

I didn’t have to worry about waiting to get my chandelier back up on the ceiling (once it’s makeover was complete) because I didn’t have my chain cover finished.  Dave hung it back up and I finally got a chance to get to the chain cover yesterday.

It’s especially good if you aren’t making over your entire chandelier, you might just want to make the chain cover.

No sewing machine.. so easy. Just follow the steps. Thanks so much Diane for showing me how to do this!!  I was thinking I was going to have to pay someone to make this for me. Ugh… that would have been dumb.





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Chandelier Makeover

May 26, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Dining room, DIY

DIY Brass Chandelier Remodel

Deciding to makeover my chandelier was made much easier when I started seeing several bloggers that had made theirs over. I really hadn’t thought about doing anything with it until I saw what I could do with it!

brass chandelierLovely isn’t it? We used a twist tie to hold it up high enough. lol

brass chandelier

I’ll take you through the steps that I used to finish it. Dave first took it down from the ceiling for me. I left the white plastic tubes on.


I primed it using Valspar white prime.

chandelierI found that it was hard to get all the edges and of course it has to lean on some part of it, then that paint gets messed up. So I hung it up from the garage door opener.

priming chandelier

I used Dover White Kryon spray paint. I found it at JoAnn’s and Michael’s stores.

Next step was to get the medallion.  I thought they were plaster. I was shocked to learn they are plastic and very light weight. I primed it and also painted it with the Dover White spray paint.


I headed to Hobby Lobby and found the crystal beads. I have never done any beading, but I did get one of those bead trays. It really did make it easier.This is what I used for the long string of beads.


I got the crystal beads so they would sparkle more.

crystal beadsI had Dave drill holes into the edge of the trays.

beading the chandelierHere is the other trays (I have no idea what the real name is for this part of the chandelier.You can see how I used one of the small beads at the top. I used fishing line (I know there is some kind of bead wire, but I didn’t have it and actually the fishing line worked great) and would go through the bead several times to hold it in place.


Does this look familiar? You can see it if you go to my “Guessing Game” post.


I wanted to make a chain cover, but wasn’t sure how. So… I googled it. I found a tutorial on how to make on. (I’m going to show you how I made the chain cover in a post tomorrow.

But here is how it looks

chandelier chain coverSo are you ready to see the finished chandelier?


LOL…. I’m getting closer!  But wait!  Let’s see another picture of the “Before” chandelier first.


And now…..  AFTER!

chandelier makeoverLet’s see some more pictures

chandelier makeover

I know the bulbs look purple don’t they?  They are actually a clear bulb. I was trying to find a clear light color so that the room took more of the periwinkle paint color rather than making it look too purple.

chandelier makeoverHere is the bottom beading that I did.

beadingHere it is lit up.


I am really pleased with how it came out.

chandelier makeover


chandelier makeover

What do you think?

Don’t forget to link up your DIY or organizing posts to my Organizing Mission Link Party. It will be open until Saturday night.

I’m linking this post up to these lovely blog parties!

Beyond the Picket Fence – Under $100 Linky Party
Delightful Order – Delightfully Inspiring
Cherished Bliss – Craft and Tell
The Shabby Chic Cottage – Transformation Thursday
Organize & Decorate Everything – Home Decor & Organizing Link Party
Blue Cricket Design – Show and Tell Linking Fun
A Bowl Full of Lemons – One Project at a Time





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Outdoor Lights – DIY Makeover

May 19, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Crafts & Craft Rooms, Decorating, DIY

Low Cost Makeover

Our outdoor house lights were in need of a replacement or makeover real bad. They looked terrible. The brass on the light fixtures was all wearing off.  I actually thought one of the lights had caught on fire at some point because it was so black looking.

Enter the terrible house lights.  Two of the four. These two were by the garage, and there are two more by the front door.

outdoor lightsWe went to Home Depot to look for new lights. Hubby picked out some gosh awful ugly ones that were only $30 for two. (No wonder they were so cheap, no one liked them).  Of course the ones I liked were all over $50 a piece. We certainly weren’t in the mood to spend over $200 on the outdoor lights.

outdoor lights

So I thought, if I am redoing other items in the house with spray paint, why can’t I redo these lights too? So Dave took them all down for me and I disassemble them.

outdoor lights

I first used primer and primed everything.

valspar primerI gave them 2 coats each.

spray primer

Dave wanted me to get the spray paint that gave the stone appearance.  Why not?

valspar stone spray paintIt was so strange going on. I felt like I was spraying a thick sand on the lights.  This was the first coat.

stone spray paintI painted all the little screws that would show and the backs etc.

Notice this picture?  It was one of the ones in the guessing game post.

outdoor lights

outdoor light framesThe pieces of glass were so dirty.

outdoor lightsEach light had five panels of glass.  I used ammonia and water to clean them.

outdoor lights
I sprayed on two coats.

outdoor lightsPutting these suckers back together was not real easy.  I’m sure there was probably an easier way, but I didn’t know of it. I used two of the triplets to hold and the third to grab the pieces.

outdoor lights

Each one was a little easier than the first though.

I then used a Stone Sealer spray that was recommended.

valspar stone clear sealerHere is the finished products.

outdoor lightI think it came out great.  I never minded the shape of the light, just the worn off brass finish.

outdoor lightsNow to get them hung back up.

outdoor lightsI was a little concerned because up close it didn’t really seem to match that great. But from a distance it blends in just fine.

I was really happy how they turned out.  Instead of spending $75 on lights that I thought were really ugly, or spending well over $200 on lights that I liked – we spend about $24  (the primer, paint and sealer were all around $8 each)

Don’t forget to link up to my Organizing Mission Link Party this week if you have any organizing, cleaning or DIY posts!






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Guessing Game

May 17, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Decorating, DIY

Guess What Each Uncompleted Project Is.

I have not been able to complete all of the projects I started this weekend.  Mostly because of the weather change.  Rain and cold are the forcast all week.  Not great for painting when the temps are in the low 50’s and humid.

I, or I should say we; because the whole family helped – did get a lot accomplished this last weekend.

I’m going to give you a few picture hints.  Let’s see if you have an idea of what project they are from.

#1 Project

I have my part of this project finished, but I need my husband to help with the last little bit.



#2 Project

This is only about 1/2 way completed



#3 Project

Hmmmm…. what could these be for?



#4 Project

This needs some finish work. It is about 80% completed



Project #5

This project is about 98% complete.  Any ideas what these are?


So how do you handle things when timing doesn’t work out?  Are you calm and collected and think…no big deal.  Or are you anxious and frustrated?

I have to admit that usually I tend to get anxious and frustrated. It depends on what the situation is, and what the project is.

But I like schedules, I like to be on time, I like to do what I say I’m going to do.  I don’t like it when things slip. But I’m far from perfect and I do let things slip and slide at times.  I am occasionally late for things (especially if I am not sure about the directions! lol) but I hate it.

I will get these projects completed as soon as I’m able.  I’m anxious for them to be completed and for you all to see them.

I want to hear your guesses!!



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Organizing Girls Headbands

Organizing Headbands


Hello, I’m Becky from Organizing Made Fun!  Sandy has a lot going on this month and so I’m helping her out!  She and I both LOVE organizing.  One question I get a lot is how to organize headbands!  They are quite tricky!

becky from organizing made fun

I found an easy way to organize headbands. So, my sweet daughter and I decided to give it a try.

This project was fun AND easy!

She did most of the work.
We took an empty oatmeal container, 2 pieces of pretty 12 x 12 scrapbook paper, and some mod podge! That’s it!
She took some painter’s tape to hold it, then…
I helped a little by cutting the excess for her.
She squeezed out her Mod Podge…
Rubbed it all over the paper…
Here is her finished project
(she added some stickers to the top of the canister)
Her messy drawer full of hair stuff went from this…
Seriously, she fit all her hair
goodies in and around that thing!
Lots of goodies!

You should try this!  If you have lots of little girls, this is the way to give them each their own way to organize their hair stuff (or for yourself).  It’s cheap and easy!!

Thank you Becky!!  Everyone be sure to go visit her blog! I love it, she has some great ideas and does a wonderful job!







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Shed Storage

Tool & Loft Storage

Being able to clear out our garage has been wonderful!!  It enables me to be able to make a mud room (coming in the future) and to not have to worry about the bikes scratching our cars coming in and out.  Having Storage outside the garage in our new shed has meant many changes.   It also enabled Dave to go buy a motorcycle, because now there is room in the garage (ok, so not all the reasons are so great! lol)

Tool Zone

I gave a specific area (back left) to Dave’s tools and equipment. We used the pegboard and I also gave him a space on the bottom shelf that he has some workspace.

tool work shelf

There is a surge protector plug behind the white drawers so when he is working he can bring out the extension cord and plug in his radio and drills, or other equipment.

I labeled the drawers for his equipment.


The shelves above have storage items in them that I labeled.

shed storage

Pegboard for equipment.  The wheel barrow isn’t hung on the proper kind of hook. I was experimenting. We did have the two black hangers full of chairs where the wb is hung.  But I didn’t like them there and found another solution for the chairs. I am going to take those two hangers down and figure out a better way to hang the wheel barrow

shed storage

You will see some more pictures from this area in my video below, but I wanted to get to the loft.


There are three loft areas in the shed.  I haven’t organized them yet and yes that bothers me!  Right now things are just kind of thrown up there.  But I’ll show you just so you can see.  But… there is one thing I did do to organize in the loft, that you’ll see in a minute.

Loft above the kid and fishing zones- This has a heavy hitch hauler that we use only on full family vacation trips. I have to figure out a better solution for that.  The bin has some golf shoes that Dave rarely wears but wants to keep and paint ball equipment of the teens.

shed loft

The side loft is kind of a make shift loft right now. Dave really was just storing lumber and board there while he was building the other two lofts, but it is convenient. The umbrella is up there now because it was left open in a storm and broke one of the hinges. Dave thinks he can repair it. (We’ll see what happens with that)

shed loft

This is the only part of the shed lofts that I am excited about. I had another one of those wire shelves (like I used for the temp bike rack).  We brought it out and it works great for storing the card table chairs and a few extra lawn chairs.

chair storage

Beside that we just have the kiddie pool that we use for the dogs in the summer and my son put the extra roll of garden fence up there, plus the two card tables. Those still have to be stored better.

shed storage

A closer look at my chair storage solution

chair storage
See the whole shed all at once in my video.

Be sure to check out my other Shed posts that I did this week

Sheds and Garages – Organizing Mission Monday Link Party – Link up your posts!

Shed Plans – Making the Shed Usable with Shelves

Organizational System – Inside the Shed (Kid & Fishing Zones)

Garden Shed Plans

I have linked this post to these wonderful bloggers

Tip Junkie

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Shed plans

May 4, 2011 by  
Filed under Basement or Garage, Blog, DIY, How To Organize

For The Shed

Break your shed organization system into zones.  You will probably have different zones than I do. You have to look at the bulk of what you are storing, and decide from that.   I have four main zones.

1) Kids
2) Fishing
3) Tools
4) Garden
5) Loft Storage

The Kids Zone

Come on in my shed!  I’ll take you on the first phase tour!

shed organization

Notice something on those doors?  I thought that space was too good to pass up.  This was the solution I came up with for the kids balls and ball gloves.

I used these baskets that I found at The Container Store.  They are a heavy duty wire basket made for the Elfa closet system. I had my husband drill screws into the studs on the door.  Then I just hung the basket over the screws.  They have been staying on without any problems.

ball organizing

I have the ball gloves in the top basket and some of the balls in the bottom.

shed ball glove organizing

There is still work that has to be done on the shed. One of those things is to get hook and eyes on the doors to hold them open.  They stay open if there is no wind.  Today it was windy and getting ready to storm while I worked.  So I propped the doors open.

shed ball organizing

On this door we have the elbow and knee pads for skateboarding. (The kids hardly use them anymore. I did get rid of several sets, but did keep just a couple in case they decide to start using them)

shed ball storage

This bin has the baseballs and golf balls… along with whatever that orange ball is. I think it is for the Lacross stick actually.

shed ball organizing

When you come in the double doors of the shed, to the right you will find the “kid zone”. This is where most all their equipment will be stored.

kid equipment organizing

I did hang the step stool right inside the door on a hook. It has easy access, and since we do have lofts in the shed, we will need to use it on occasion to get things.

shed organizingI did purchase this tennis ball organizer from The Container Store. I really like it. The lacross stick is just hanging on a hook.

tennis ball organizer

Their scooters and po-go stick are hanging on a specialty pegboard hook that I already had.

pegboard organizing

The baseball bats also hung easily from a pegboard hook.

pegboard organizing

I hung their bike helmets low and simple for easy access.

shed pegboard organizing

So what else do we have in the garage that takes up space and scratches the cars coming in and out (when they aren’t careful).. that we REALLY wanted in the shed?

Yep…. Bikes!!

This part of my plan has not been completed.  Dave is going to build me a bike rack underneath the shelf.  I am hoping to be able to store all five bikes in it.  For now, I made this temporary bike rack using a 3 level wire shelf that I had.  It doesn’t work the greatest, but it does give the triplets a designated space for their bikes.

bike rack

There is still extra wood and pegboard that may yet be used, but for now I just slipped it out of the way behind the bike rack and under the shelf.

The other two bikes have pegs on the front tires that are going to come off.  I have my bike rack designed, I just need the man to make it for me. Sometimes things in my head aren’t realistic for what can actually be done.
bike rack

I just used green duct tape to label with.  It doesn’t look the greatest right now, and after we get the final bike rack completed (which I will show you when it is done) then I will be relabeling.


Now for the two teenagers bikes.  We already had these portable bike racks that I purchased a few years ago from The Container Store.

portable bike rack

So I slide the two bikes in sideways in the shed.  Is there the perfect amount of space in this 10×14 shed to have the bikes not block something? Nope…. but I did try to arrange them so that you could get to the areas that are most used.

bikes in portable bike racks

That about does it for the kids zone.  Let’s move on.

Fishing Zone

pegboard in shedThis area is still under construction.  My husband has decided he is in charge of this area.  I did the major organizing of the items.  He still has to go through all his tackle boxes and get rid of stuff.

tackle boxes

So you think I don’t have struggles with my better half decreasing his clutter?  lol  I said, “Dave, we have seven people in this family, there is NO reason that we need more than seven tackle boxes.”  Ok… that didn’t go over so well. He has all kinds of reasons why he needs more than seven tackle boxes. “A Man can’t have to much fishing equipment”, he said.

I of course disagree with that!!  I did however get him to get rid of five fishing poles.  He hasn’t had time to get to this yet (but I’ll tell him I’ll do it if he doesn’t! That will help)  I used this old brown shelf that we had in the garage for roller blades and it is now for his tackle boxes.

I took advantage of the pegboard for a few things.  The corner area is where he is going to build his fishing rack.

fishing equipment in the shed

He even left a hole in the corner of the loft floor so that his taller fishing rods can fit.


His newer fishing tackle box has these separate organizing sections.  I think he has a few too many for the bag and that is why these were loose.

pegboard organizing

I’ll also share the fishing rod racks once those are completed… (unless he doesn’t ever do them!!)

Don’t forget to link your organizing, cleaning or DIY posts to my Organizing Mission link party!

Be sure to check out my other Shed posts that I did this week

Sheds and Garages – Organizing Mission Monday Link Party – Link up your posts!

Shed Plans – Making the Shed Usable with Shelves

Garden Shed Plans

Garage Storage – Outside

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Paintstick Review

April 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Decorating, Dining room, DIY, Reviews & Giveaways

HomeRight EZ-Twist Paintstick

I was very excited to review this EZ-Twist Paintstick by Homeright.  I have several areas I am going to be painting in my house.  I was starting with my dining room.

dining room

I was being daring with colors. I remember a friend who had a room that was periwinkle and I loved it.  Trying to find the right color was the hard part. Bright enough, and that combination of blue and purple that isn’t too strong one way or the other. I ended up going with the color on the left.  The lighting really effects it.

paint samplesI watched the videos that I was sent of the paintstick being used and I was psyched! This looked awesome! It was so easy and fast!

When the box came from HomeRight I had a few other things to review also!  There was a Quick Painter and Quick Mask and a Paint Sprayer (which is not part of the package being given away today –  I will review later once we can try it)


The Quick mask is a combo tape and drop cloth for edging.

Quick mask

It is set up like a roll of packing tape with a sharp edge to cut.

Quick mask

This was nice. You can tape along the edge and then pull out the drop cloth. It isn’t a full room drop cloth.. just edging.  You just have to be careful that you don’t pull it on the sharp edge side.. (just sayin’.. not that I might have done it or anything, but if you were to do that I bet you would tear the drop cloth.  LOL)

Quick mask

I also used it on the edge of the windows.

quick mask

It worked well although I had to be careful around the corners. It didn’t always stick as well there and I had to fix it on most corners before I painted them.  But I don’t know that it was much different than most other tapes I’ve used in the corners.  I would use it again.  It was nice to have the drop cloth along the edges.

They also included the Quick Painter.  I have used a tool similar (the red handle one) and really liked it.  But this had a tube to load, so it seemed really convenient.  There was not a roller edge, so it didn’t work for the ceiling edges, but it was nice especially around the window edges.

quick painter

There was no problem loading it up.Just fill it up like a squirt gun.

quick edge

Once the paint was loaded it was very easy to manage.

quick painter

I did learn that you have to be careful when you push the little pump handle to get the paint flowing.  I first tried it when the brush was not on the wall and it came flying out.  Thank goodness for my Quick mask drop cloth! Really!!   The trigger seemed a little touchy.  Not hard enough and I had to paint over things a couple of times because I wasn’t getting enough paint. Just a little too hard and I had too much with several big drips down my drop cloth to prove it.

But when I had the right amount, it worked great.  I think it just takes a little getting used to the “feel” of the trigger for it to be a fantastic tool.

Now for the EZ-Twist Paintstick!  Please be sure to watch the whole thing through. I did have some trouble with it… but for my husband it worked with ease.

I also think a big factor may have been that the paint I used was very thick. I got the Behr ultra paint with primer all in one. I think next time I will use a thinner paint and I bet I would have better results.

behr ultra paintI want to point out that the splash guard around the roller is very nice. You don’t get the splatters that you get with a traditional roller. If you noticed, my husband walked in wearing his coat and didn’t take it off while he tried the paintstick. He didn’t have any paint on him.

The paint in the handle goes pretty far.  That was one of the things I wanted to see.  How far one “handles worth” goes. It holds 18 oz of paint and will paint a 8’x8′ wall according to HomeRight.  I do agree that it did seem to go a long way on the 2nd coat.

You don’t have any paint trays to worry about sitting around which is really nice.

I would advise you to follow the directions and white down the roller first and let it dry. There is a bit of lint on it if you don’t, but it is explained in the directions that wetting it down first and letting it dry will help solve this issue.

I can recommend this after watching my husband use it.  I think there is a bit of a learning curve, and I would advise you not to use a really thick paint with it.  I think that was the main problem for me.

You might want to go to the HomeRight FB page. There are many people who have taken their EZ-Twist paint challenge and did not have the difficulties I did. I just watched some more myself and keep wondering why I had such troubles.

To Enter to Win one of TEN Ultimate Home Painting Kits!

These kits will include the EZ-Twist Paintstick, the Quick Painter and the Quick Mask like I showed you above.

Tell me: Why you need painting done around your house? **Be sure to come back here and leave me your answer in your comment. Your e-mail has to either in your comment or on your profile.


**Each of these HAS to have a separate comment to win. The winner is picked using It just goes the number of comments….not by what you say.

1) Post a picture of the room you would like to paint on my FB page saying “This it the room I want to paint with the EZ-Twist Paintstick.”  (5 chances to win, be sure to leave the link and make 5 separate comments below)

2) Subscribe to my Organize with Sandy blog This is for 1 chance to win!

3) Follow me on Twitter @OrganizerSandy (Leave me your twitter name) 1 chance

4) Stumble one of my posts for 5 extra chances to win. (tell me which post. Post 5 comment entries)

5) Tweet this out up to 3 times a day. You can use the tweet button at the top to make it easy.  ( Pls leave your url link) 1 chance for each tweet.

See lots of way to enter!!

This contest will run until 11:59pm est on Thursday , May 12, 2011 **THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED**

Any comment that comes in after the above time will be deleted. This is open to US mailing addresses only. One person per mailing address only. Winner will be chosen by

If you are chosen as one of the 10 winners, I will ask you if you would mind if the rep from HomeRight contacted you. They would love it if you wanted to post a video for their FB page on your experience. But this will not be a requirement and I would not release your information without your permission.

You will have 48 hours to reply to my e-mail if you are picked as the winner, or else I will go on to the next winning number.

I was given the above paint system to review. The pictures and videos and opinions are my own.

Also be sure to enter my other Painting supply giveaway going on until May 2, 2011

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Dining Room Paint

April 20, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Decorating, Dining room, DIY

The Periwinkle Adventure Begins

I am going to give you a sneak peak into the beginning of my dining room decorating.  I started off with the paint.

Here’s the deal.  I would have loved a dark taupe.  My husband does not want any shade of what he calls “masking tape”.  Our entire house is that blah light tan neutral color now. Thinking we were going to sell it, we didn’t want to venture into “colors”.

When I thought of a fun color, I remember back about 15 years ago to a friend who had a periwinkle kitchen. It was gorgeous!  I knew the problem would be getting the color right.

I don’t like blues, I love purple, but didn’t want it to be “purple” either.  I wanted periwinkle.

Here is what happened.  I painted it and was really upset… because this is what it looked like.

Purple! ugh! I kept thinking when I was painting it that it would darken up. It did a little.

Looks Purple

periwinkle dining room

My husband was saying, “Well hun, it is appropriate for Easter, should we decorate with chicks and bunnies?”  Of course he was teasing, but I wasn’t in the mood for teasing.

I went and got the paint color chart I used to see if Behr paint messed up when the color matched the Gliddon paint sample.

It is the 2nd one in from the left…. top.  It looks like it matches. But look.. this is the blue page of paints, not purple!

Periwinkle – No light


But then…..

I turned off the dining room light…. and it was periwinkle.  I couldn’t believe the difference just from the light!

Periwinkle – No Light

periwinkle dining room

Look again….  Light on.. (scroll back and forth between these two).  See the difference?

Light on – Purple

periwinkle dining room

So now I am happy. I know I just have to find the right light bulb to take away the “rose” color in the light so that it will take that purple look out.

Does anyone know what kind of light bulb I need to buy so that the light will be more natural and not bring in that rose color?

I am going to be bringing you a couple reviews and giveaways real soon on items I used to help paint this room… so be watching!!

Hint…. Green Toad Pivoting Paint Brush and the Home Right EZ Twist Paint Stick

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Planning Board

DIY Chalkboard & Dry Erase Scheduling Planning Board

planning board

Creating your own schedule board that is geared towards your children/ family doesn’t have to be hard. It can be a family communication board, weekly calendar, chore board for the kids, or combination board, or planning board like I created.

I made karate calendar / job board for the triplets.  Their karate schedule is different most every night. It also changes a couple times a year.

I started off with finding a frame. I had one that I really liked, was the right size, but the color wasn’t right. So… I spray painted it.


Step one  – Prime and paint the frame.

This is what I used for primer.  I also got the Krylon paint.


I used an Dover white gloss spray paint and it took several coats.

spray paint

Step 2: Gathered your other supplies

craft supplies

I had the frame, Chalkboard Contact Paper, 18″ x 6′ and the  Liquid Chalk – Works like a Marker Dries like Chalk – Set of 8 Earthy Colors ,a glue gun, an x-acto knife and cutting board and a ruler. I also purchased a long narrow magnetic dry erase board that fit half of the frame.

But I also needed a few other things.  I had purchased this Elmer’s Tri-Fold Foam Display board from Walmart for another organizing project I am planning in the future. I knew I wouldn’t use it all for that project, so this would work perfect. It is light weight and thick enough.

Elmers Tri-Fold Board

I also bought some small self laminating sheets.

photo laminating sheets

I had magnets that you can adhere your business card to.


Then I found those cute small clothes pins when I was in Walmart too. They were just too cute. I also bought 3 yards (I didn’t need all of that) of a thicker ribbon and some thinner robe like ribbon (for the name cards) along with white hooks.

Step 3: Measure the space that the Elmer’s foam board needs to be cut to fit.

First position the dry erase board where it will fit. Then measure to cut the foam board.
craftI used the X-acto knife to cut the foam display board. It made it easier than scissors to cut and you get a cleaner line.

Step 4: Cut the chalkboard contact paper to cover the Elmer’s foam board.

chalkboard contact paper

You don’t have to cover the back of the board too. Just bring around the edges and make sure you have a smooth surface on the front without wrinkles or air bubbles.

chalkboard contact paper

Wrap the edges under and then on the ends I did trim off some of the excess contact paper with the x-acto knife. I didn’t want to take off both layers, I just wanted to thin it down when I folded it over.

chalkboard contact paper

Step 5: Position the two boards into place.

I first cut a piece of ribbon that would cover up where the two surfaces meet and hot glued to the dry erase board.  I positioned it so that it was half off the dry erase board.

I put hot glue around the inside ridge edge of the frame where the boards would lay.

I then placed the dry erase board with ribbon attached into the frame (good side down).  I then put the chalkboard covered foam board into place. I first hot glued the edge of the chalkboard foam piece that would meet up against the dry erase board. Once they were in place I held it up without turning it over to make sure the ribbon was in place and then pushed on it to make sure it would adhere to the chalkboard piece.  This is what the back side now looks like.


I also gave a squirt of some hot glue in between the crack where the two pieces meet.

hot glue gun

Turn it over carefully once it has dried and this is what it looks like at this stage. From here you can customize it.  You may want to leave the top blank for hand written notes or magnets. (See the ribbon across the middle?

communication board

Step 6: Put the screws in place.

I just purchased the small hook screws. I didn’t need to pre-drill them, I just positioned them and screwed three of them in the bottom, one for each of the triplets.  Then two across the top for the ribbon to tie onto to hang it.


Step 7: Make the Name Cards

I got out some of my old business cards and used those.  I put two of them together for a little thicker base.  Then I covered those in the chalkboard contact paper.

business cards

Once I covered three of those I cut the thinner ribbon to the length I wanted. I did bring it down the side of the business card to fully measure.

I then wrote each of the kids names on the chalkboard covered name card in the chalkboard markers. Be sure to let them dry completely before you complete the next step.

chalkboard markers I then opened up one of the laminating cards and placed the name card upside down on. I placed the string down along the edge of it and then covered the laminating sheet. Be sure to tuck the other side of the string down.

name card

Step 8: Make the clothes pin magnets

I again took one of magnets for the  business cards.  I covered the sticky side with a piece of the chalkboard contact paper.  I then cut it into two strips length wise. I then used the hot glue gun and glued the clothes pin onto the chalkboard contact paper covered side.

clothes pin magnet

I made one for each day of the week.  I only used Monday – Saturday on my board though. The kids don’t have karate on Sundays, so I didn’t want to crowd them.

Step 9: Make the small cards with the time on them.

I then cut up some of my old business cards in half. Covered those with the chalkboard contact paper and wrote the times on those.


Step 10: Write the jobs on the chore board.

I put a number 1, 2 and 3 on there, because the triplets change seats at the dinner table.  They will have their seat assignment, and chore for a week at a time.

chore boardRemember if you mess up, you can use a wet cloth and erase .. and start over.

Step 11: Put it all together

The weekly karate schedule

clothes pin board


The top bow. It hides the hook that it is hanging from.


The weekly chore board and seat assignment for the triplets.

chore board

The final project

planning board

Isn’t it cute?  I am really excited about using it.  It is going to go against a periwinkle wall when my dining room is finished.


I Love Your Comments!

I’m linking this post up to these lovely blogs:

Cherished Bliss – Craft and Tell Tuesdays
Bella Before and After – Amaze me August
Tip Junkie – Handmade Projects
A Bowl Full of Lemons – One Project at  Time

This project has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for #collectivebias. The pictures, project and thoughts are my own.

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3M Command Hooks

April 8, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, DIY, How To Organize, Kitchen

More Uses in Your Pantry

Once I got the Command Hooks from 3M out and used them for storing under the sink items, I started thinking of other areas I could use them.

I don’t know about you, but I’m not so good with a drill.  I will just hammer in a nail anywhere. I’ll look for a stud… but if it isn’t where I want the item to go…. so be it. (no stud)

These little hooks give me some freedom (and no…this is not a review, I didn’t get these from 3M and no one is asking me to write this….)  to hang away!

Here is another view of my pantry… and I have added a couple of things.  See the wire rack with the vegetable sprays and salad dressings?

That is new…. I didn’t have a drill….. but I did have 3M Command Hooks. (I feel like they are a super hero or something!… there is an idea for you 3M…. the Command Hook super hero….comes to the rescue! – I want credit for that one!)
wire rack
The wire rack I got at Old Time Pottery. (Watch for a gift card give away coming from them soon too on my site!!  yippee!!)  It came as a set of 3 different little wire racks like this.
Here is how I hung it.
command hook

Then below I hung the grill tools on them too.
command hooks
command hooks

Previously I had the grill tools on thumbtacks and they would fall out frequently.

command hooks

It has been working great! Love it.

I also used one of them to hang my fly swatters. We live not real far from an egg farm and certain times of the year the flies can get really bad.  (They haven’t been as bad the last couple years as when I first moved here 5 years ago..oh my was that bad!)

fly swatter

This hangs right behind my trash can. So people always know where it is.

command hook I’d love for you to share any uses you can think of or have used some kind of hooks for. It doesn’t have to be the Command hooks… I just think hooks can be so useful!

I’d love for you to link it up to my Organizing Mission Monday Link Party
It will be open until April 9, 2011, but don’t worry, if you finish your kitchen, pantry or label projects after that… my link party is always open to any of your organizing projects!

Organizing Mission Monday

I Love Your Comments!

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Uses for Egg Cartons – To Help Organize

Organizing Doesn’t Have to Be Expensive!

There are common everyday items we use and throw away that we could recycle to help us organize. Last week I showed you how you can use empty toilet paper rolls and duct tape to make cool cord and cable organizers.

Egg cartons – There can be so many uses

egg cartons

Before I show you one use for this egg carton I do want to say that I am not in favor of saving every egg carton from now on because you MIGHT be able to use it.  What I would say to you is that if you can think of an area you can use one of the ideas that I give you, or the other readers give you… save as many as you need for that project and recycle the rest.

egg carton Simple enough

egg carton Are you thinking?

egg carton I have oodles of ways you can use this…. but I’m only going to show you one! I want to hear your methods… see your posts and learn some creativity from you!

You can use this egg carton as a desk drawer organizer.

egg carton

All the little separate compartments

egg carton

Think of all the little things we have in our desks

egg carton You can either cut off the lid and use just this portion of the egg carton, or you can leave the lid on and put it to use also.

egg carton You can benefit from the still divided, but bigger compartments too.

egg carton

There are a couple things when I look at these pictures.  All you crafters and DIY’ers…. you are all thinking… omg I need to spray paint that so that it looks better and you don’t see the writing or I can make that egg carton into wall art if I just do this….

I WANT TO HEAR YOUR IDEAS!!  Better yet… I want to see them.  I would love for you to go and get an egg carton and work your magic on it!  Show me your ideas.

You can either leave your link to your post… or to another blogger who you know has done some cool things with egg cartons in the comments OR you can link them to my link party here.

I love your comments!

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Help Me Decorate – The Dining Room

March 8, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Decorating, Dining room, DIY, Entry Ways & Mud Rooms

Organizing Is My Thing – Decorating Is Not. I’d Like Your Help


Since we have decided that we are going to stay in this house, I am now finally ready to decorate it.  I moved in here 6 years ago when Dave and I were dating.  After we got married he and his kids moved in and the plan was to sell this and move to a bigger house.

After trying to sell it two different times, we just decided to wait a bit to see what the economy was doing.  Houses still are not selling here and we found out what a similar priced house was appraised for. That was the decision maker. There is no reason to lose big money at this point. We don’t HAVE to move, we just WANTED to move.

So…. that being said, I am ready to make this house my own. I’m just not good at it.  We kept all the paint neutral thinking we were selling. I never got curtains, only blinds for the windows.

I want to take a different room and over the next several weeks have you guys help me! I want you to link any posts or sites of examples.  I’m not going to make it a link party, but you can link up in the comments.

Let’s start with my dining room.

dining room First.. let me start off with saying, this is our every day eating dining room. We don’t have a formal dining room.

dining room We don’t have enough matching chairs and have tried to look for matching ones, but couldn’t find them. We have to have at least 7 chairs for all of us to sit down.

The window.

dining room

This is the pie safe that my husband bought. He loves this. It holds all the plastic cups, plates and bowls for the kids. The top left drawer holds napkins and the right drawer has trivets.

dining room

This is the wall that I am thinking I am going to put some kind of bench on so that the kids can change their shoes when they come in. Then I want to put a wall organizer (mail slots, calendar, etc) for the kids.  I don’t have any other hall space to have something like this.  Yes the craft cart will be leaving the room.

dining room

The dining room is just to the left when you walk in the front door.  My launch pad is on the other side of the wall. I am planning on revamping that also.

dining room

I am really toying with the idea of splurging for the Pottery Barn Wall Organizing System.  Do you know of something similar that is less expensive, but looks as nice?

This is what I’d like to do:

1) Paint  – What color?  I’m ok with fun or bold.  (right now it is a tan color, these photos are a little dark and hard to tell what the color really looks like)
2) Put a bench in to sit down and take off shoes and have a “launching pad” for the kids above it.
3) Wall decor
4) Curtains, valance.. something fun and original?

My Tastes

1) Not vintage or old or antiques
2) I’m not into blue as a color scheme
3) I’m not into country
4) I like a little more modern, but not super modern.

What I can and can’t do.

1) Table stays
2) China Cabinet & pie safe stay
3) pictures can come down
4) Craft cart is going to go
5) I have to keep things as economical as I can.  I don’t have a lot of money to spend for all I want to do in my house.

You can leave links with your comments and ideas, or ideas from web sites or other blogs for me to see –  here on this post (it is ok to leave a link in my comments)  – or if you’d like to link up your own sites ideas for me on my link party, feel free to do that too.

But you can also leave any organizing or cleaning blog post link up to my link party.

Organizing Mission Monday

I LOVE your comments!!

Thanks for your help!!

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Reorganizing My Office “After”

February 1, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Decorating, DIY, How To Organize, Offices

The Next Step – Putting My Office Back Together Again

Yesterday I showed you my office that was too crowded and messy.  I didn’t use it because I like to sit with my feet up when I am on the computer most of the day. I wanted to figure out a solution.

I had my boys move my big furniture. Got rid of the 2nd desk, a book shelf and a file cabinet. Then…. I went shopping!

I drove the 2 hours down to the Ikea store in Cincinnati Ohio. Wow…. that store is overwhelming. I got my Expedit 5×5 wall unit and a couple other items and was a happy camper. I was even happier because it was marked down to $179.00 instead of $199.00 because it was the only color left.

Now to have my son put it together.  You need a big space to do it as it has to lay down to put together.

Ikea expedit shelfIt took him about an hour to put it all together.  That thing is heavy! It came in 3 big boxes and total of the 3 boxes was 214#.

Ikea expedit shelfI was so glad he helped me.  But we would have to wait for Dave to get home to put it in the office.  Dave drove to our farm and picked up my chair for my office.  It was all coming together.

Ikea Expedit shelfOk.. we have it in. My chair is in place.  I know… this looks very odd right now.  And actually it will not be your typical office when it is finished either.

Next up is to make the 3 plastic drawer bins I got at the Ikea Store to go in my shelf unit. they cost $9.99 each.

ikea instructionsIf you have never purchased anything at Ikea before, just realize that the instructions are by picture only. There are no words.  Personally I felt like it was a bit of a puzzle to figure out. You have to look for little markings they have on the pieces to be sure which side to put where.

Ikea drawerIt all just snaps together. Nothing really hard about it, but the first one took a little longer to figure it out.

They fit just perfect in the shelf.

Ikea expedit drawerI already had all the green and pink cubbys.  That green one didn’t stay there. I did a lot of playing around with where I wanted things.

Still looks very strange doesn’t it?  See the pink strips on the wall behind my chair.  We took those off the wall and moved them. They are magnetic strips. (luv them) I know my chair does not match my hot pink/lime green color scheme.. at all. But I had the chair, it fit and I’m using it. (couldn’t afford to go buy a new one… and even to recover it was going to be really expensive) So… I can’t have everything perfect you know.

I put one of the cubby units that I had on the back of my desk… over against the far wall in between the desk and the wall. It seemed kind of strange. The wall is angled there and the desk was not able to go flush against it. There was this space there that was driving me crazy.. because it seemed unusable.  I decided to try this… and it is working out great.  I had 2 cubby units. One was 3 cubby’s high and the other was 4 high. The one with 3 cubby’s is on the bottom and just comes a little bit above the desk. Then I stacked the other one on top of that.

cubby units

So this is how it turned out. The cubbys below the desk still work for items that we don’t need very often. Yes… you have to lean under the desk to get them, but the space is being used  – and they are items that we don’t need often.

cubbysThe other cubby unit I used on top of the file cabinet on the other wall. It will holds all of the pouchees and card cubby’s that I sell.


I got this ottoman to put underneath the window.  I have one of these in my family room and really like it. I got it at Target for $79.00.  Oh bum! I just looked online to get you the link for this ottoman from Target… and it is on sale for $59!


I wanted this for a couple of reasons. I wanted something that would fit underneath the window sill. Something that would provide some seating if I needed it and the main reason I wanted it…. was to house my new electric throw that my husband bought me for Christmas.  I also have 2 other blankets in there.  We have 2 dogs…. and 5 kids at home.  Do you think that my throws are ever without dog hair because kids get them out and lay on the floor in front of the TV?  Nope… but now, I have my own blankets in my own office…. hee hee

electricSee?  I didn’t fold it up, I just tossed it in and took the picture.  (I usually keep it plugged in and then I can just grab it and pull it over to my chair – like I am right now as I write this with my blanket on!)

Now for the finished look.  Keep in mind… this is not your conventional office!  This is modified for me so that I can keep my feet up while I work.  I love it! This is a look from the door way.

Here is a little closer view. I had the painting of the egg shells that my sister did for me years ago. I decided to hang it. It actually has the pastel lime green, pink and almost a burgundy color in it.  lol  Trying to bring my strange colors together.

So… I will sit in the chair and I have everything there I need to run my office.  I’ll go into detail in another blog.

Here is a view from the other angle.

You must remember.  I am very practical.  Would I ever put this set up in a clients house?  No, not unless they asked for it.  But I would try to accommodate their needs.

What I’d like to do.. is to put up some shelves above the desk.  And shelves to the left of the desk instead of the cubby units.  But, I spent my budget and already had the cubby’s.

I am not making my office to be a showcase room.  I am making it to be “my office” and what I want it to be.  If I had a place to put the kids computer, I would actually have that out of here too.  But when I am working, the kids usually are not in here.

Your Mission if you chose to take it is: Put your office back together! lol

If you aren’t able to completely reorganize your office or our office desk area, what is your vision for your perfect office?

Organizing Mission Monday

Link up Your Office Mission Post

You can find the linky by clicking on the button above. Feel free to keep linking up your different office projects that you accomplish during this Office Mission. I am ok with also linking up organizing projects that aren’t office related. This link will be up until Feb. 24 so you will have time to add your office projects in

I would love it if you could vote for my blog! You can vote up to once per day. Just click the button. Thank you!

* The Ikea and Target links are not affiliate links… I just wanted to let you know where I got them.

I’m linking up this post to:


Sumo Sweet Stuff


handmade projects

Creations by Kara

Organize and Decorate Everything


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Reorganizing My Office “Before”

January 31, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Decorating, DIY, How To Organize, Offices

The Before Shots

I may be an organizer, but I’m a very busy organizer, and things can get out of hand in my home too. So don’t feel like everyone else has perfect places. I’m going to show you I am human and very much like you when it comes to things getting out of hand.

I have a very small office and share the space with my husbands desk and the kids computer.  We have 2 huge desks, 3 file cabinets, 1 large bookshelf and lots of cubbys.

messy office Here is my mess of a desk. As you can see I don’t use it very often.  I normally always set out in the living room so I can keep my feet up. If I have them down too long I have problems with my feet swelling ( getting old and being too heavy). I come in here mainly to do bills and send out my pouchee and Card Cubby orders.  I have an extra computer screen because I found out when I got my Mac Book Pro that I could hook up another screen and use duel screens. But, I’m not in here enough to use it and hadn’t purchased the cable.

This picture is directly behind my desk, so I can turn my chair around and get to the 2nd set of file cabinets. These are my main files. But as you can see, my papers have taken over and are way overdue for filing.

This is to the right of my desk. Printer and large file cabinet. I have extra paper sitting on top of that. Then you can see the corner of my husbands desk.

messy officeThis is his space and I don’t bother it. Although he wasn’t using it much either.. the kids use the computer. But the flag poles and whatever else that other stick is there (lol) and the boxes on top of the 2nd file cabinet are his. I try to give him his space. But now we have made him his own office and work area in the basement and it is time for this to go.
messy office

Now on the other wall when you walk into the office is the big book shelf. It has a combination of his stuff, my stuff, the kids stuff on it. You can see how congested it has become.

book shelfThis is that same corner when you walk in, I set up cubbys so that I had more space to put my product samples etc for reviews.

You can see how crowded it all is.

And then another view from the doorway of what the file cabinet and my paper system looks like behind my desk.

Pretty bad huh?  Sharing a small office space is not easy.  And when I worked in here, the system worked for me with being able to access what I needed to from my chair.  But…. it was driving me crazy.

I really had it … I wanted to figure something out. I would try to work in the living room and with the TV going if the kids and hubby were home in the evening etc.. it was just not easy for me. I would put on headphones with music. I have to have quiet….to really concentrate.

I sat down on the 31st and decided I was going to rearrange the office.

Step 1: Get out graph paper and measure your space. Measure what will stay in.
Step 2: Plan what you want your space to look like. Do you need to purchase anything?
Step 3: Move everything out. Decide where to put the big items that aren’t staying.
(example, trash, donate, another room.
Step 4: Clean the space (paint if you are going to before you clean.. lol – No painting for me)
Step 5: Sort all the little stuff. Clean as you go
Step 6: Decide what items are needed, now that you know what is left to put back in
Step 7: Move your big furniture back in, or move to where it needs to go in the room.
Step 7: Purchase your items
Step 8: Complete moving in the smaller items that have been sorted.
Step 9: Customize it so it works for you. This may take a few weeks of changing it up.
Step 10: Sit back and smile because it feels SO much better when it is finished!

The Clearing out

I decided I was doing this on the 31st of December and started that day! I was trying to figure out a better solution for my living room, but did a 180 and decided to redo the office. My two oldest boys were home from boot camp and were leaving on the 2nd. Dave had a sore arm and wouldn’t be able to move much. So… I decided I need to do it now while I had help, otherwise it wouldn’t happen. Let me tell you…. they weren’t so thrilled that I was interrupting the Rose Bowl. lol

First step was to decide what to do with my husbands desk. It was going to go in the basement to provide him with extra desk space in his new office.  But…. it wouldn’t fit down the basement steps. They tried to take it apart and it just wasn’t going to happen.  We had no where to store it… so …yes.. out to the curb! I told you I was determined.  We knew someone would pick it up before the trash men got it.

deskFirst to clear off everything off my this massive heavy wood desk. Then I cleaned it all up.

Cleared off the bookshelves.empty bookshelf

Next step was to move the bookshelf. It went down to the basement for my husband to use.  Then we got the vacuum out and vacuumed the empty space .. and cleaned up the walls behind and baseboards.

We took the black 3 drawer file cabinet down to the basement also. That cleared out the spot for my 4 drawer file cabinet.

Of course vacuuming and cleaning had to be done. Only one flaw in my plan, I was going to be covering up the vent. oops

Because it was my space, I didn’t mind. I knew I could use a blanket to stay warm if I needed it.  I was too determined to make my idea work. Something as minor as a vent wasn’t going to deter me! lol  (now if it were a clients home, I would have figured out another solution, but I was ok with it in my home)

Next thing was to clear off the file cabinet that was behind my chair and take out the drawers. This furniture is SO heavy! So glad my boys were there to help move things.

File drawers

Now of course you realize that I am making a huge mess in my dining room. Piling everything up that I will need to go through. I told my husband for at least 2 days I was taking it over. So we adjusted. I could get a lot of stuff out right away, but I was going to go through everything before it went back in.

This was just the beginning and the area around the table had all kinds of stuff too. Unfortunately when you clear out a space, you have to deal with more mess before it gets better.

File cabinet in place. I made sure to plug in the lamp before we moved it back to the wall and put the drawers in it. It is too heavy to even budge when the drawers are in.

The desk was moved on the wall where the bookshelf used to be.  My big 4 drawer file cabinet in the corner stayed put.

Next step.. Trip to Ikea for the wall unit I have been wanting forever!! (I really wanted white, but they were out of stock, so I got the walnut to match my furniture.
Step 2 – Dave was to bring back a recliner that I used to have in my living room from our farm.

I know.. you are thinking.. a recliner in your office?  Yes…. I told you I have the problem with having to keep my feet up, I solved that problem!

Stay tuned!!

Your Mission if you chose to take it is: Reorganize Your Office

Organizing Mission Monday

Link up Your Office Mission Post

You can find the linky by clicking on the button above.  Feel free to keep linking up your different office projects that you accomplish during this Office Mission. I am ok with also linking up organizing projects that aren’t office related. This link will be up until Feb. 24 so you will have time to add your office projects in

I would love it if you could vote for my blog! You can vote up to once per day. Just click the button. Thank you!

I linked this post up to:

Keeping It Simple

Sumo Sweet Stuff


handmade projects

Organize and Decorate Everything

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Gift Wrapping Station

Have Your Supplies In One Location

ribbonsWhen it comes to time to wrap a gift.. do you have to go in 10 different places in the house to get the supplies you need… if you can even find them all.  Organizing your gift wrapping supplies does not have to be hard at all – or expensive.

There are a zillion different ways you could do it and about as many organizing solutions. I’m going to show you what I do.

gift wrapping stationNothing fancy or Martha Stewart worthy here.  I have an unfinished basement and I keep this nestled in between some shelves. I have a wrapping paper holder and then I have 2 small craft carts stacked on top of each other.

gift wrapI prefer to buy my wrapping paper in the rolls instead of the sheets.  I guess I have never liked the creases in the folded paper. (Actually I have never really about it before I wrote this post.. lol)

gift wrapI also like to get the wider (or in this picture  – taller) wrapping paper to wrap bigger boxes without having to piece-meal them together. The plastic storage container that I probably got from either Target or Walmart has a white tall lid. It would work for the shorter rolls, but not the bigger ones. After keeping it around for awhile, and realizing I was never going to use it.. I pitched it awhile back.

gift wrap cartThe plastic cart is a 3 drawer (2 shallow and 1 deeper drawers) and 1 open space cart. I have the wheels off these and stacked 2 on top of each other when we had to reorganize our basement to move Dave’s Man Cave down.

gift wrap ribbonI just have the ribbon on top of the cart. I am not a big ribbon user (hangs head in shame…no big fancy packages here) so have just 3 rolls on top is not a problem while wrapping for Christmas. I’ll put them in one of the lower storage areas after Christmas.  These green clips are actually designed for wrapping paper rolls, but they are for a bigger roll of paper than I have right now. They are holding that loose end of ribbon from dangling.

gift tagsIn the top drawer I have gift tags and greeting cards.  Keeping all the cards and labels in one place makes it real easy.

gift wrap tissue paperTissue paper is in the bigger drawer. Right now it looks neat, but you know when you get a gift bag with all that tissue paper in it? It is all crumpley and can tend to take up a lot of space, so I use the deeper drawer.

gift wrap suppliesMaking sure you have the correct supplies handy all the time is important.  When we are wrapping a boat load of gifts like at Christmas it’s easy to do. But, get an extra set of supplies to keep in your gift wrap cart all the time. It makes it so easy if you have to wrap a quick gift to have everything you need, right at your fingertips.

gift bagsGift bags can be a pain to organize.  I use the lower open part of the cart for gift bags.  With this unit you could possibly fashion a hook of some sort on the waffle grid like side of this craft cart.

bowsSince I have 2 carts together, I used the bigger drawer on the 2nd cart and keep my bows there. When they are this full they can tend to pop out when you open the drawer, but for the most part it isn’t a problem.  We just refilled this in anticipation of all the wrapping.

I usually sit on the floor (I do have carpet on my unfinished basement floor) but you can put up a table for bigger wrapping jobs. But both of these units are very easy to transport. So for my Christmas wrapping I usually just carry them upstairs and use the dining room table.

If you have a cool – well.. it doesn’t have to be cool (mine isn’t cool , it is practical) gift wrapping station, please link it to my “Organizing Mission Monday” link party! I’d love to see it!

Link Parties I posted This To – Check Them Out!

Show and Tell Green


Wallet-Friendly Wednesday

3) Seven Thirty Three – Sugar and Spice

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Christmas Card Donation

Do You Save All Your Christmas Cards?

Christmas card

If the answer is yes…. may I ask why?

Because you thought you were supposed to?
Because you want to remember who sent you a card?
Because you enjoy going back and looking at them?

There are many reasons people save cards. But think to where you are storing them.
Do you have plenty of room for them?
How often do you actually go through and enjoy them?
Are they neatly organized by year so that you can find cards you are looking for?

My guess is that most of those answers are “No”.  More than likely they are scattered in a few different places, or thrown in a big box. They might even be musty smelling by now.  You haven’t gone through them in years…. I’m I close?

I would like you to consider some options.

1) Donate your cards – There are several places that take card donations.

St Jude Hospital accepts card fronts.
Cancer Research Foundation also accepts card fronts.
Your local nursing home might have craft programs
Your child’s art teacher or pre-school, church youth program, local recreation center or adult day care center. These are all places that use them for crafts.  They can recycle the fronts of the cards.  They might use them to make gift tags or other cards.

2) Recycle them instead of throwing them away

Be sure to put them in your recycle bin if you are going to throw them away. If you are in the mood that you just have to get them out of the house now, and you don’t have the time to take them to a nursing home etc, and don’t want to or have the funds to ship them to a donation center…. don’t beat yourself up. It’s ok. Just put them in the recycle bin. They will still go to good use.

3) Crafts

Please don’t keep them yourself for crafts unless you KNOW you will use them within the next couple of months.  We are all good at saying, “Some day I will get to this, so I want to be sure to save it now”.   Donate them instead.

4) Put only the special ones in a Card Memory Album

If there are some really special ones – maybe from your mother who has passed on, and she has written a personal note – then save it. But pick and choose the really meaningful ones. There are actually greeting card albums – called “Card Memories“. I did a review on one awhile back. Heather who created this album designed it so that the card slips in and is in an “open” position. So that you can read the insides.  I would suggest for those cards that you feel you have to keep – purchase something like this and place those special cards someplace that they seem special. Then you can enjoy them.

christmas cards

5) Take pictures of them

If you want to remember them and have some guilt pangs about donating them, then take some pictures of them. Put them in groups and you will have digital memories – more than likely you will see the digital pictures much more often than you looked in that box anyway.

6) If you keep the cards to remember who sent you cards the previous year

That is an easy one. Just either make your own list of who you sent them to and who sent them to you on your computer. Or they have little card address books that have places to mark that down in.

7) They have pictures on them or in them. I can’t throw it out.

Again, think about those pictures. If they are pictures of people that you really think you need, then keep only the pictures.  But if you are keeping those pictures – plan to get them into an album.  If you have good intentions, but you still have Christmas pictures of families from 1982 that you “plan” to get into albums… well, you get the idea.

Here is an idea – for those families that you get pictures from each year and you want to watch them “grow” up in the pictures?  Then put 2 or 3 of them together…in order of the years – snap a picture to keep digitally of them… and then discard the actual picture. You have it saved…it’s ok to throw out (recycle) a picture.

Getting rid of your clutter in those boxes of old cards is one way that you can help others.  Donate….

I linked this post to these Great Link Parties

1) Keeping it Simple
2) Making the World Cuter Mondays
3) House of Grace
4) The Gypsy Corner – Three or More Tuesday

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Visualize The Space To Organize

October 5, 2010 by  
Filed under Blog, DIY, How To Organize

Step 1 in Organizing a Room is to Visualize what you want the Room to Look Like When Finished

organizing: visualize the space
You can use visualizing a practice in many areas of your life. When it comes to organizing, it can really be a useful tool.  Having an end goal can make the process much easier and less stressful.

If you dive into a cluttered room without any kind of plan….it is hard to know what the outcome will be.  If you go in with a plan of how you want this space to look when you are completed, it makes the process easier.
How does it make it easier?  One big way is that when you are sorting through all the stuff in that room, when you come upon an item that you just don’t know what to do with… it can help if you have a plan. For instance – Let’s say you have this huge stuffed animal that your husband won for you at a fair 15 years ago. It is in the corner of the room, with clothes draped over the top. You haven’t even actually seen him for what seems like years – but when you finally uncover it…all those memories come flooding back.  How happy you were that he spent all that money trying to win that for you, walking through that amusement park with people looking at you asking how you won that huge animal.  Trying to figure out how to even fit it in your compact car…   But – will this huge stuffed animal fit in your new space?  That corner that it sits in is going to have a storage cubby unit that will house all your scrap booking paper.  This is where the rubber meets the road.    You realize that he won’t fit. Then of course you try to figure out if there is another place in the house for him.  If there is and you really have the space…then keep him.  But my suggestion would be to let someone else have some time to enjoy him too. Donate him – a nursery at church, preschool room etc…  But be sure to take some good pictures of him first.  Even take one of you and your now husband with him… then you will still have those memories.

When you have a plan in place – then it can make those hard decisions much easier. You go back to what you visualize and decide if that item fits into the plan you have for the space.  If not…. get it out of that room.

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Organizing with Pegboard Walls

Pegboard walls can be lots of fun in a Teenagers room

peg board wallsThere is plenty of space and opportunity to use his walls! No worries about nails! LOL!!

pegboard wallsHe can hang not only pictures, but also his clothes!

By his bed he has a CD holder for his CD’s and then he has his cords (you can see a couple of them on the right) hanging for headphones etc.

This has turned out to be a great basement bedroom for him. We spent probably about $500 total in supplies between the peg and wall board, electrical components to add more power and light for his room, paint, piece of carpet and closet supplies. Not bad for a makeover in an unfinished basement!

Actually it is really functional.  He thinks it is great!

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DIY Basement Bedroom

Taking an unfinished basement room and turning it into a organized teen bedroom.

basement room

We moved one of our teens down to the basement (his choice). The problem was that we have an unfinished basement. The budget was not there to actually finish it. So we improvized.
pegboard walls

We used a combination of pegboard and hardboard to finish the upper walls and cover up the insulation. Ok…the reason the paint looks purplish? Well…. my step son wanted blue walls and ceiling. My sister who is an artist told me it will look way too cold with blue. She said to make sure to I got red in the blue…added a little violet to the blue. Well….I am not great with colors and the swatch didn’t look purple next to all the other purples. It looked grayish blue. But…. it looks purple on the walls. The ceiling is a darker shade of it. But thank goodness my step son actually likes purple…so he is fine with it. {phew}
pegboard walls

You can see the solid hardboard on the far side of the picture. We used magnetic paint on that area. It didn’t work as well as I hoped it would. We were very careful to follow the directions on it…. only did the size we were supposed to – the only thing we didn’t do is buy special magnets. I still don’t know that it wouldn’t make the difference.

I’ll show you the rest of the room this week.

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