crafty

I fully admit to being Pinterest addicted. I am either on the app on my phone or on the website at home but for as much as I’m on it, I’m also getting project ideas and then getting them done. I love crafting, as evidenced by the Etsy shop, and having a place to get all new inspiration is awesome for me.

Take for example these bracelets from Delighted Momma.

I am not sure when I saw them on Pinterest (or even where, sometimes I tend to fall down a rabbit hole) but I know it was within the last day or two and yet here I am today turning some ridiculously cheap bangles into something cute.

I didn’t have hemp cord lying around but I usually have embroidery thread so I used that instead.

The first one I did similar to hers with just wrapping the thread around the bangle

And then I drew upon my past of making friendship bracelets and hemp necklaces and switched it up a bit

The yellow and orange one is made in the hemp necklace method and midway through I flipped the primary color.

The red one is called a “Chinese Ladder” technique from making friendship bracelets and it’s still in process so you can get another glimpse of the MEGA cheapie bracelet that is going on underneath there. I still have two more bracelets left to cover and decide what I want to do with them but they turned out so cute!

for the love of the pool

When you talk to anyone that has ever had a pool or known anyone who has had a pool, the first thing you hear about it how AWFUL the maintenance is. So awful, in fact, a large majority of them would never own a pool again because it’s that much of a pain in the ass.

Now, our pool is a fairly good size and it’s directly beneath about like 5 trees, two of which are Crepe Myrtles with their ridiculous feathery flowers. Which means the amount of crap that ends up in the pool is not small and that it pretty much has to be skimmed every day. I don’t mind that AT ALL. I do all the skimming while in the pool, so I keep cool the whole time and I get a little bit of exercise plodding all over the place cleaning it up. We have a fancy sand filter which runs on a timer so I just check to make sure it comes on when it’s supposed to and that nothing is trapped in the skimmer, no big deal. The skimmer holds the chlorine tablets so the chemical bit is largely handled by the filter. All of these things are seriously not bothersome to me in the least.

I have been trying to swim laps every day (doesn’t always happen) as my form of exercise since it’s the only exercise that doesn’t make me want to immediately croak right now, so all of those above things are going to be handled when I’m out there anyway.

Again, NO BIG.

Unfortunately, there is A BIG and it’s the back-flushing of the sand filter. We had to do it this weekend and OMFG, that sucked so severely. First, the back-flush hose is only 50 ft long. We followed our installation instructions exactly and put the freaking filter on the far side of the pool, which means that the 50 ft of hose is only just barely enough to reach to the main drain, IF it goes up and over the top of the damn pool. Second, the hose is made from some flexible material and is FLOPPY. Third, it takes a shit pot of water to properly flush out the filter. Combine those three things and you get me desperately fighting against a too-short, floppy hose, while it sprays chlorinated water in my face (and everywhere else) as I am trying to get it aimed where it needs to be AND HOLD IT THERE. Meanwhile, our already low pool is getting lower by the second and oh hey, did it occur to no one that ADDING WATER might be a good freaking idea? I can tell you it didn’t. At the time that the water level got below the skimmer, I was the one watching the filter and Wills was manning the hose (snerk) so I turned it off as fast as I could but it wasn’t fast enough to prevent water from getting into the first chamber of the filter pump, which meant that Wills had to go Google how to resolve that issue while I held the hose in the air and sweat through my clothes; which I continued to do while he came back out and resolved the issue, until it was time to fight the hose again (snerk) and continue with the process. IT TAKES FOREVER to get all the sand clear from this little observation window thing that you have to watch the whole time, so we opted to get as much out as possible and MOVE THE FUCK ON ALREADY, instead of getting it totally cleared.

After that? Rinse cycle! Thankfully the rinse cycle is only a minute long and then you get to re-attach everything, figure out how to get all the residual water OUT of the HUGE FLOPPY HOSE and turn the filter on again to ensure everything works.

Supposedly we are going to have to do this again at the end of August. Sprog and Wills will be handling the next go round.

Oh and only somewhat related but our neighbors also have a backyard pool. For the majority of the time we have had ours, no one has been in theirs, I honestly thought that they had let it get algae or whatever. Anyway, Wills and I were finally enjoying a nice leisurely night swim the other night and had the radio on when the neighbor kids came out and started blasting the stupid local pop station. Seriously? If I come outside and someone else already has their music on? I am NOT GOING TO TURN MINE ON. Wills and I both are of the “you were here first, I’m not going to disturb you” mentality but it seems like no one else is, so rude! We totally left OUR pool because we were so annoyed by THEIR pool. UGH.

Projects and cookery

Over a week since I posted last? I would love to say it was because I was off on some fabulous vacation, or hell ANY vacation, but that isn’t the case. I’ve just been spending my days doing chores, babysitting the nephew
Nephew playing the Wii
making stuff for the shop

(but then not actually getting it really photographed and posted-feh)

making yummy foodstuffs
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and working on some small projects around the house
Our song, for the gallery wall

I’ve also been trying to swim daily. It seems like so much stuff but really I’ve been fighting head and allergy problems again so I feel like I could/should be doing so much more. Plus we had a huge problem last week with Sprog’s dentist and it really messed a lot of stuff up (still not resolved unfortunately) so I’ll need to get on that this coming week.

Tonight we are going to Pasadena for a niece’s b-day and I need to get her gift situation sorted. Her party is actually tomorrow but it’s being held at 3 pm OUTSIDE in TEXAS in JULY and there is no freaking way with all my head issues that is going to happen. I think I would probably just pass right the eff out from heat stroke. Plus we FINALLY have Sprog for our whopping two whole days this month and we want to get to spend time with him doing what he wants to do. Going tonight instead is hopefully a good compromise, I don’t want her to be disappointed.

I hope everyone is enjoying flip flop shopping! Have a great weekend.

I love spray paint

I bought a pair of lamps at TJ Maxx many, many moons ago and have never done anything with them other than plunk them down on a flat surface and turn them on (and off of course, must save energy!). One of the bases started to crack about a year or so ago, you have to love humidity and its effects on wood, so I just painted over the gap and turned that ugly bit to the wall and went on with my life.

When my husband and I re-organized the office so I would have a dedicated work space for the shop, I decided it was time to do something more with that particular lamp.

Lamp 1 of the pair, the one that is still this way.
(This isn’t the cracked lamp, but the other of the pair that is still original)

I knew I was going to paint it and during a shopping trip to Home Depot, I grabbed a deep turquoise/peacock blue spray paint. I repaired the crack with wood putty. I figured that would be about it for the lamp until I found a new shade on clearance at Target for $13.

Now the lamp looks like this

Lamp 2 of the pair after paint and new shade (light on)
Light on
Lamp two (light off)
Light off

Christina has the same shade and has had it on a red base and now on a yellow base. I love that it’s so versatile!

Oh and you may notice on the original lamp it has a different style of shade which is held on by a little ball at the top? All I did to convert the lamp is remove the ball, the shade and then the harp that was holding it up. It’s very simple, the harp just pops right out of the slots on either side of the socket.

The whole project cost under $20 for the shade and the spray paint, I already had the wood putty and sand paper.

hitting the bricks

One of the things about this house, that has always bothered me, is the fireplace. It’s off center (as is everything else) it has some messed up “detail” in the front that I’m sure was supposed to be hip in the 80’s but to me just looks like hillbilly teeth badly in need of braces and has a super odd mantle that seems to have been just slapped on there to compensate for possibly running out of brick. Plus, it was made of the exact same brick as the outside of the house so the word Mexico is randomly stamped in some of them AND it’s like they used all the ones that were just too effed up and damaged to have on the outside of the house on the inside.

Wall before
See? It’s ugly! It’s ORANGE and mottled white in places. It’s WAY TOO CLOSE to that oddly placed window, the mantle is just weird. UGH.

Before I got a wild hair (thanks to Pinterest-I swear, it’s both a time suck and a total motivator) it looked like this

At first I decided to try white washing. I figured half of the bricks already had a bunch of white crap on them anyway, maybe it would look not so bad and save me a bit of work. That turned out like this

Which didn’t feel quite right to me and the husband admitted he thought looked pink. Once he said the words, I had flash backs of living in Az with all the pink washed furniture in the southwest style and OMG NO.

So another few hours of hand-cramping painting with two different sized brushes and now it looks like this

I still need to do something about that mantle, most likely adding some trim pieces to make it look less like some slabs of plywood, but at least the orange is gone and I hope it looks somewhat better.

And even though that “detail” looks even MORE like teeth now that it’s white, it’s like muppet teeth, like Dr. Teeth, right? RIGHT? Please FTLOG tell me it’s not still screaming hillbilly teeth.

ah, penny, brown penny, brown penny

I collect souvenir smashed pennies, whenever I can find a machine, as my take home souvenir of our travels. I rarely buy any t-shirts or anything else for that matter, save for the occasional post card, but smashed pennies have always been a love of mine, I guess it harkens back to when I was young and went to Disneyland for the first time.

Anyway, the other day I got a wild hair that I needed to do something with them ASAP, that keeping in the little witch bowl I had been storing them in was no longer acceptable and that is how this addition to our gallery wall came to be. It’s also how I discovered that I’ve lost our Grand Canyon pennies which really bothers me and also proves my point about the storage solution being less than ideal. *sigh*

I started with an old frame that had been chucked out to the garage until I could figure out what I wanted to put into it. Conveniently, it was already divided like this, so I just needed to select the 9 pennies I would want to use.
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From there, I grabbed a T-shirt out of the “work shirts” drawer (work shirts here being house chores and projects, of which we have FAR TOO MANY) cut it to the size of the cardboard insert in the frame, attached it with spray adhesive and duct tape on the back side to allow for cleanly folded edges.

For each penny, I made a half-inch date/location strip consisting of scrapbook border paper cut on the edges with scrapbooking scissors and ultra fine tipped sharpie.
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I can’t even tell you how excited I am that Command Strips come in black now. Since I use black frames in my gallery wall, it’s always bugged me that some of them are held up with white strips. Will be changing those over in the future.
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They are insanely easy to use and since I already have stuff on my wall, it prevents things falling on me when I try to hammer up something new.
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Here is the wall as it stands today with the new projects (this one, the silhouette of Sprog, a hammer spray painted butterfly and a cute witch themed plaque from my sister which I added the other day)
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I love it!

*title from a Yeats poem that I saw in the movie Must Love Dogs

weekend DIY-ing results in a 90 year old body

So we ripped out our living room and dining room carpet (it’s one huge open space) this weekend. I say we, but because of my allergies, I mean the boys.


Not surprising, it was super gross under there…like enough sand and dirt to make entire sand castles out of, gross under there. The pad was totally degrading in many spots and just…eww. I am pretty certain that a cat shit on the concrete and the workers laid the paid right over it. GOOD TIMES.

Once that was done, I did all the scraping (HOLY CRAP BALLS THAT WAS A LOT OF NASTY GLUE) and the remaining of the cleaning with the handy dandy shop vac. We also got a new table saw and misc tools that we needed to get started. We also discovered a huge hump in the floor that required another supply run and putting down a skim coat on the concrete (it didn’t go well) Needless to say, we didn’t get very far on day one.

I MUCH prefer laying ceramic tile to this bs. Seriously. It’s a lot more measuring and tedious details and frankly, it annoys the piss out of me, but we have about 800 sq we are laying so obvs I just need to get the hell over it and put on my big girl pants.

Day Two we got a fairly early start but not as early as we wanted because of dealing with getting the table saw put together and more measuring.

This is as far as we got before having to break for my nephew’s bowling birthday party. As soon as that was done, we had to rush back home and get right back to work.

By the end of the evening (we aren’t assholes running saws all hours of the night) we had gotten almost to the halfway point of the living room and are now on the part where it runs all the way across into a 32 ft span. WOOHOO.

From here we will continue on through into our bedroom and down the hallway AND THEN WE WILL BE DONE.

In the meantime, I am living like this

in my bedroom. That is my ENORMOUS sectional sofa a lamp, the rug and our tv all crammed at the foot of our bed. 30 some odd boxes of floor are stacked against my pantry in my kitchen along with two armchairs, barstools, a trunk, two tray tables, the gate for the dogs and I’m sure a bunch of other junk I don’t know about, the entertainment center is blocking more than half of the hallway, our coffee table is on the front porch, the dining room table is moving back and forth from the back porch depending on the threat of rain and our bar is in the office blocking my desk. GOOD TIMES.

I am also so sore that I am shuffling around like a 90 year old woman and couldn’t sleep this morning because my body was throbbing.

i get bored looking at the same old walls

In another of my recent “wild-hair” moments, we made a little change in the living room.

The focal wall used to look like this
Living room accent wall view

and now it looks like this

(apologies on the lazy pic from my iPhone, it’s just too damn convenient!) We moved the tv back to the media console and removed my Ginger Mint Julep photo from the hall wall in the dining room to the mantle. I also set up a small tray table behind the accent chair by the window with a lamp and a vase of fresh flowers.

Small change, but one I am happy with. I’ll be even happier when the floor lamp off to the right is gone, it doesn’t work and right now it’s just collecting dust. The intention is to add two more lamps in this room (it’s REALLY dark) and I already have found one, I just need the second.

I also really am tired of living with SO MUCH BROWN. I have some ideas for tweaks in that vein soon…but we’ll see what wins in priority.

wanting wednesdays

House project ed.

So we bought floors today. We also bought a new dishwasher. I AM SHITTING BRICKS OVER HERE. I get anxious at major purchases. Like weirdly stressy. Buying a car? I might need a freaking paper bag and will certainly chew a hole on the inside of my cheek.

I guess the issues I was having with the floors is that my taste and the taste of what might be good for resell value, probably won’t match up very well. I love dark floors. DARK floors. I also love exotic woods or bamboo and well, that’s pricey and our house, isn’t. It’s a starter house and we’re already looking at over-upgrading just by re-doing the shit I can’t live with (the bathrooms, the floors HELLO ALLERGENS, the tiling of the kitchen etc) and with our lovely economy we are already upside down in this piece so…

It’s sucky is what I’m saying. Plus we have dogs. Big 75lb + dogs with nails and we have a teenaged boy that likes to do tricks on his old skateboard decks inside my house…so shit needs to hold up, you know?

And our dishwasher (less than 4 ish years old) kicked the bucket recently and we eat at home often to save money and I have two bottomless pits of manliness eating in this house so WAY TOO MANY FREAKING DISHES.

So yeah, we just pulled the trigger on a fairly major dollar amount. My stomach is pretty shredded already from the meds…this isn’t helping matters.

Dishwasher:

Floor:

$40 and a couple of hours of frustration

This weekend we got to work on a couple of projects around the house (we also went to a b-day dinner of our friend Johnny and decided to have a fondue/game night but that isn’t the point of this post) one of the major frustrations of my kitchen is that the light comes from the overhead florescent fixture in the center of the kitchen, which means that my body blocks the light and that there are a lot of dark corners.

Sunday while wandering around Home Depot, trying to select flooring and a new dishwasher (STILL HAND-WASHING DISHES, STILL WITH THE STABBY HATE) we bought an under-mount lighting kit for our cabinets and Willy installed it later that evening.

I could not be more STOKED about this thing. We splurged an extra $10 and bought the kit with an extra light and dimmer set-up


With the overhead light off


With the overhead light on

More projects to come!