Monday, March 03, 2014

It's a Goodwill Miracle!

I started writing this LAST Monday, but then I got distracted and, um... well, I kind of forgot about it.  Whoops.

You all know how much I love me some Goodwill shopping.  I find cool stuff, I'm participating in a form of reusing/recycling, and I save money.  It's like a treasure hunt.  I never know what I'm going to find!

Well, last Saturday I came across an Emile Henry Butter Pot.  Initially I picked it up because it was a beautiful shade of green.  I thought it was just a lidded ceramic bowl.  Closer inspection yielded the brand stamp on the bottom, the butter "bell" inside, and a finish free from chips and cracks.  

Also, it was marked $2.99 AND it was 50% off Saturday.

Should have been a no-brainer, right?  

WRONG.  I.  Put.  It.  Back.

Dumb dumb dumb dumb dumb!

I know it was a mere $1.50.  I know it was Emile Henry, which if you know, tends to be pretty pricey. I know it was one of my absolute favorite colors, a bright apple green. But, here's what I was thinking:  

"Do I really want to leave a dairy product out on the counter?"

I know it's perfectly safe.  I know this is what people used to do in the olden days. I know that the butter bell/pot type holder works even better than just keeping it in a plain butter dish.  However, believe it or not, I'm VERY picky about what I buy at the Goodwill.  I won't buy something just because it's cool, or cheap, or a name brand.  I put a lot of thought into most things.  I want to be sure it's something I am going to use and love.  I don't like a lot of random clutter and I don't like to waste money.  Sure, it's just a few dollars here and there, but it adds up over time.

So I left it.

Well, of course I thought about that stupid thing ALL DAY on Sunday.  Finally that night I decided I'd go back the next day and see if it was still there.  I mean, I know the Rule of Goodwill - If you want it, BUY IT, because odds are it will be gone tomorrow!

So I went back.  I crossed my fingers and prayed it would still be on that shelf.  I walked in, went straight to where I had seen it before, and -

NOTHING.  IT WAS NOT THERE.

I was so disappointed!  I told myself I knew the odds were that it would be gone, but still, it was a bummer.  I figured that while I was there I may as well see if there was anything else I wanted, so I turned to the other shelf behind me and - 
  

THE GOODWILL MIRACLE!!!

Someone had moved it to a different shelf!  I was so excited, I grabbed that thing, hugged it to my chest, and made a beeline for the registers (after making sure there was no Pyrex on the shelves.  I'm not crazy!).  I got home and triumphantly showed it to my husband, holding it up like a trophy.  Do you know what he said?

"Oh, I was wondering why you didn't just get that in the first place.  I like soft butter on my bread."

SMH.  He could have spoken up!

And yes, I realize I am super excited about a butter dish.  I am officially old.

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Friday, February 07, 2014

Valentine's Day Decor 2014

I'm working on getting out of my rut, and the first part of that is to get back into homemaking.

That's right - homemaking.  As a stay at home mom, I consider that to be my job.  I figure, if my home is not looking nice and isn't a place that my family and I want to be, well then, I'm not doing a good job.  Dusty shelves with crap that hasn't found a home yet isn't welcoming to anyone, am I right?  So, I got to work decorating for Valentine's Day.


Most of this stuff was stuff I already had in my house.  The feather wreath has made a few appearances before, as have the Fenton cake stand and the glass cloche.  The beaded heart in the middle of the wreath I found in the Target Dollar Spot a few years ago.  The mercury glass candle stick, the red mosaic candle holder, the silver stand it is on, the mini apothecary jar, the teapot, the red vintage books, and the silver framed mirror are all from Goodwill.  The faux succulent in the teapot is from Hobby Lobby.  I can't keep succulents alive to save my life, but luckily the faux ones are pretty convincing.  HA!


The faux boxwood topiary ball is from Joann.  I had to hunt all over to find one the size I wanted!  I made the sign.  It says "Crazy about You" in French.  I just painted a scrap of pine board I found in the garage with acrylic paint, printed out my sentiment in the right size on plain printer paper, laid it on top of my board, and traced it.  Since pine is super soft, the pencil left an indentation on the wood that I just ended up tracing with platinum Stickles.  The hardest part of this project was waiting for the glitter to dry!


Under the cloche I have another small apothecary jar filled with glitter hearts from the dollar store and a red tassel I made a while back.  There is a small milk glass vase holding faux roses, baby's breath, and tiny glitter hearts, also from the dollar store.  I made the "two hearts" thing a couple of years ago.


I strung a couple of buntings from years past over the big mirror and changed out the runner under the lamps for a white lace one layered with a little red one that has a pattern of white hearts.  Pretty basic.

This is why I love saving all the little things I make and gather from thrift shopping.  I only spent $10 out of pocket this year on my mantel decor!  I bought a foil garland heart for the front door for a buck at Walgreens and a little decorative stem thing for the faux fern by my front door for another $1.50.  Not too shabby.  :)

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

The Gumball Machine

A few weeks back I helped my friend Suzy with a booth at a flea market in Cave Creek.  We loaded up a U-Haul with a bunch of stuff that she wanted out of her house and garage.  I managed to score this for myself:


That sucker is SOLID metal!  I've always wanted one, and based on what I've seen on Instagram, they're kind of trendy right now painted in fun colors.  It was dirty from being in the garage so long, so I had to clean it first.

Then I realized the insides were kinda rusty, so I took it apart to clean those.


HOLY CRAP.  This was a serious project, with lots of teeny parts.  It took me about a week of working on it here and there to get it done.  I had parts laid out on the bar of my kitchen so I wouldn't forget how they went back together.  There was rusty dust all over my bathroom from where I was sanding and cleaning the pieces.  I took photos on my phone to keep me on track and even still some parts took a few tries to reassemble so that they would still work!

After everything was cleaned, oiled, and reassembled, I painted the stand and machine itself.  I decided to go with a bright apple green for the machine, and so as to not overwhelm, painted the stand oil rubbed bronze.


I love how it came out!  It looks so happy now in my entry and the green is so much more me than the red ever could be.


We filled it with Skittles for the big game on Sunday.


Of course.  ;)

Monday, February 03, 2014

Super Bowl Sunday

A few weeks ago, my husband and the Bean got together to watch their team play the 49ers in the playoffs.


I'm going to let you guess for whom they were rooting.

Even though he's not really interested in watching the game itself, Bubba couldn't help but get in on the celebration when the Seahawks came out on top because it meant that:


Since we haven't really had a party in the entire three years we've lived in this house, we decided to invite our friends over for the game.  This meant I had to a) clean my dang house that I've been slacking off with cleaning for the past year.  I mean REALLY deep clean it!  and b) decorate.  Duh.

I didn't want to go too far overboard.  I finished my Valentine's Day "mantel" since that is over the tv and everyone would be staring at it for several hours.  Next I worked on adding a few Seahawks touches here and there.

First, I bought an inexpensive hand towel and embroidered the team's logo on it.


I hung that in the bathroom.  Note to self - do NOT use the "embroidery trick" on terry cloth.  That was a nightmare to remove!


Next, I gave the baby and myself new pedicures.  Priorities, people!


I found a super cute printable here and placed it in a frame from the Goodwill.


I came up with a menu.  I thought it would be fun to serve a few different kinds of soups with freshly baked bread for dinner along with the customary nibbles during the game.  My husband jumped on the idea, and thus, the Souper Bowl was born.  I made the labels in Photoshop and just printed them out on white card stock.  The silver holders I found at the restaurant supply store for a dollar each and stuck a small, flat magnet on the bottom so they'd stick to the back of the stove.


The chalkboard, which had been sporting a Christmas greeting for over a year, got a makeover.


I went shopping for party supplies.  The Seahawks plates were a surprise score at the Walmarts for two bucks.  The plastic spoons were from Party City, the and the bowl holding the napkins, the salt and pepper shakers, milk glass urns, and milk glass case were Goodwill finds from years back. The paper straws were from Hobby Lobby.  This was my first time using paper straws and NEVER AGAIN.  They're cute but get soggy and bendy pretty fast.  Lame.


I found the napkins and the plain white cups for the soup at my local restaurant supply store and embellished them with stickers I made using Photoshop, a 2 inch hole punch, and a Xyron machine.

Can I just tell you how happy I am that my husband's team has good colors?

We had our friends over and it was a blast!  Everyone ate until we were bursting and the kids all played together nicely in Bubba's bedroom.  My husband ate a handful of Skittles every time Seattle scored, and needless to say, he was all jacked up on sugar by the time I took this photo.


I'm so glad that we were able to enjoy the very first Super Bowl win for my husband and his team in a memorable manner with our friends at our home.

Go 'Hawks!!!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Seasons

I feel like living in Phoenix has really skewed my idea of what months happen in which seasons.  This is how I think of the year:

November:  Fall
December - January:  Winter (and I use the term super loosely) a.k.a. late fall
February - March:  Spring
April:  Late Spring/Early Summer, depending on the weather that year
May - October:  Summer

That's right; to me, summer lasts a full six months out of the year.  Some people may disagree, but I feel like when it gets over 95 degrees it is safe to say that Summer has arrived.

Have I ever mentioned how much I loathe summer?  You can't do anything.  It's too hot!  I'm hot all the time as it is, but once it gets over 90 I start to really suffer.  I feel like I can never cool down.  I don't want to leave the house because at least when you're inside the air conditioning makes it bearable.  You could walk around in your underwear all day and it still wouldn't be cool enough.

I feel like I suffer from reverse seasonal affective disorder, and my doctor seems to agree.  Last summer my anxiety/depression was so bad that I gained thirty five pounds over that horrible six month period.  How much did I gain over the holidays?  NONE.

That's not normal.

Once again I picked a word for One Little Word.  This year my word is

I have spent so much of the past year and a half thinking to myself, "Oh, I really should do ____!" only to stay sitting on the couch and not doing anything at all.  I let my blog go, I didn't keep up on my scrapbooking, I cooked minimally, I spot cleaned my house and only when absolutely necessary, and I stopped taking care of myself, really.  Bless my husband, he's been so good and so patient with all my slacking off.  He cooks and he cleans and he is super involved with being a parent.  I'm very lucky.

I do realize that it needs to stop though.  That's where my word comes in.  When I catch myself saying, Oh, I really should do ____!" I'm going to try to actually do that thing if I can.  So, if I'm sitting around doing nothing and I think, oh, I should go work on my Project Life a bit, instead of sitting there and playing another round of Candy Crush or checking Instagram again, I'm going to get up and do it.  Instead of thinking, oh, I should start dinner soon, I need to get up and start chopping stuff instead of procrastinating for so long we end up getting a pizza.

I've been putting this into effect too.  I've cleaned more this month than I did in the last three.  I hand embroidered six dishtowels for a friend's bridal shower gift instead of slacking off and buying something lame at the last minute.  When I had fifteen minutes to kill between a trip to Target and school pickup, I stopped at home to grab some stuff out of the garage to take to Goodwill instead of just spending that time hanging out in the school parking lot and playing on my phone.

I really want to be more productive this year, and in order to do that I need to break some of the bad habits I've developed.  Hopefully I can get into some sort of routine before the weather gets too hot and that will combat the issues I have during that time of year.  Of course, it's like 80 degrees here already, so I'm racing against the clock.

Man, I hate summer.

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