Trying New Things: Day 31



Day 31: Gallery Wall

Better late than never, right?  This particular project took me a little longer than I anticipated.  I finished it a few days ago but it’s been so stormy here I wasn’t able to get any decent photos until today (and they’re still not that great).

I’ve got plans for several gallery walls, but wanted to start with the girls bedroom.  Since moving them into the same room I had to take most of the stuff I’d made for Susannah down so the walls were totally bare. I’ve been collecting frames for a while, so I started by giving them all a coat of spray paint.

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After everything was painted I taped a couple of pieces of wax paper together in the length/width of the wall I wanted to hang them on to make a template.

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Once I had my dimensions I rearranged everything to my satisfaction (thanks for the help, Ang!), used a Sharpie to mark the outlines of everything, and then marked exactly where I wanted the nails to go.

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This was by far the easiest method I’ve ever used to hang things on the wall.  The paper easily ripped away around the nails.

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I’m probably going to have to re-paint the purple walls at some point, but wasn’t up for that much work this month.  Shhh…don’t tell Jerm.

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I used a combination of free printables (I’ll have to search to find the original sources, but I’ll try to link them at the bottom soon),  a few store-bought pieces (the canvas in the middle is from Hobby Lobby and the one on the far right is from Walmart), and a lot of DIY stuff.

This canvas is Instagram photos of the girls.

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The little love canvas was a cheap 6×6 from the dollar spot.  Just added some chipboard letters and painted over the whole thing. photo 3 (7)

I glued on a laser cut frame to add some interest to this boring frame.  I love how it turned out. photo 4 (5)

Out of everything on the wall, I was most hesitant to add this.  I made it from magazine clippings (took forever to gather them), and I love it, but don’t know what I think about it with this grouping.  Ang said to keep it, so I did. photo 4 (6)



Why did all of these photos turn out so grainy?  I don’t know what I did. photo 3

And my favorite piece: this drawing of our family by Susannah.  I had her draw us on a piece of fabric, then stuck it in an embroidery hoop.  I adore it. (Idea credit is here.)

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Now I just need to work on a gallery wall for my bedroom and the living area. I can’t wait to get started…or maybe I can.  January sounds good.

New to my 31 Day Blogging Challenge?  You can catch up on all the posts here.



Trying New Things: Day 30


Day 30: Failure

Actually, failing isn’t a new thing for me.  I knew at the onset of this final week that I was going to have a hard time catching up, because everything left on my list was time-consuming or required me to go hunting for items (I wanted to put together an outfit based on something from my Pinterest boards) and with a sick kid, a bunch of church things happening, and school, most of it didn’t happen.

I have, however, been working on a big project that I am HOPING to finish up tomorrow so I won’t end the month on a total fail. Fingers crossed, but tomorrow’s going to be a busy day so it may not happen.  I was thinking that since there are several things on my list I didn’t get around to that maybe I’ll work in the things I missed as time allows.  Because seriously, I need to learn to use the serger that was given to me and every time I tried to pull it out this month I got overwhelmed with something else. And that’s just not cool.

So for today, a quick update on a few of the ongoing things I started earlier in the month. First up, the book I started way back on day two of this crazy challenge.  You may remember that I randomly chose A Game of Thrones since I’m pretty clueless when it comes to fantasy novels, but after a few people mentioned that I probably wouldn’t like it I switched over to Here, There Be Dragons. I’m about 7/8 of the way through, read entirely on my grandmas exercise bike last week.  It’s an easy read and interesting enough, but to be completely honest, I don’t have much motivation to finish it. Turns out that fantasy just isn’t my genre.

The cleaning schedule was going really well up until this week.  I’ve barely given it a thought since I’ve been home so I need to make an effort to get back to working on the scheduled daily tasks.

And the happy mail project went off without a hitch.  At least something did, right?

Send some positive thoughts my way that I’ll get my last project finished tomorrow!

New to my 31 Day Blogging Challenge?  You can catch up on all the posts here.



Trying New Things: Day 27


Day 27: Wearing Heels

I’ll keep it short and sweet today.  I’m 5’9″ so I’ve always shied away from shoes that make me a lot taller.  I used to wear heels for work, but they were always the big chunky ones (I still like that style a lot, although I don’t really have anywhere to wear stuff like that anymore). The goal was to find a REAL pair of heels and wear them, but seriously you guys, I searched all month and just couldn’t find anything that I liked/was willing to pay for.  I tried shoe stores, thrift stores, discount stores, big stores, little stores.  I finally picked up a pair at a thrift store that are okay.  I wouldn’t have bought them new and I’m not crazy about them, but at least I’m willing to wear them.  Sadly, since I just found them I probably won’t have a chance to wear them until some point in November (challenges are good and all, but I’m not going to wear heels to do housework just to say I did…sorry). So here’s a shot of the shoes and I WILL wear them soon.

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I’m not crazy about the straps, but I’ll more than likely wear them with jeans so they won’t show anyway.  I really wanted some glittery silver heels, but I’ll have to keep my eyes open for the perfect pair.

New to my 31 Day Blogging Challenge?  You can catch up on all the posts here.


Trying New Things: Day 26



Day 26: Wear a Scarf

I know, I know.  Wearing a scarf is a weird thing to pick.  So here’s the deal.  I see all these women wearing pretty scarves and I look at my Pinterest style board and pretty much every single outfit I like includes a scarf…but I’ve never worn one. For some reason they scare me.  I feel like an idiot when I try to put one on.  I don’t know why. (Seriously, ask Heather if you don’t believe me, cause I tried to wear one almost every day last week and chickened out every time.)

I viewed videos on how to wear scarves 2,999 different ways.  I looked at pictures.  I read tutorials.  Nothing helped. So today I forced myself to put one on and leave the house before I could change my mind.  I probably wore it wrong. But I wore it. It was hard for me.  But I did it.

(It’s also hard for me to post this picture because I’m sure you’re all going to ridicule me. Irrational, I know. Also, please ignore the hideous state of my mirror…)

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Phew.  Glad to have this one behind me.

New to my 31 Day Blogging Challenge?  You can catch up on all the posts here.


Trying New Things: Day 25


Day 25: Jewelry Organization

First things first, I know this is a day late, but between driving home from my grandmas house and the Casting Crowns concert, it just wasn’t happening yesterday.

Also, I need to post an update on yesterday’s spray tan experience, because after a few hours I noticed that my skin was considerably darker than it had been right after I left the tanning salon.  I guess I didn’t realize that the mists worked the same way as self-tanner, getting darker over time (although I probably should have…duh).  So it turns out that I wouldn’t need a level 2 after all.

Earlier this month when I tackled my makeup organization I mentioned that I also kept my jewelry in the over-the-door organizer that I’m trying to get rid of.  I researched a lot of different jewelry organizer ideas, and eventually settled on using shower hooks to organize my bracelets and necklaces. I’ve seen several freestanding jewelry organizers that I would love to use (Pier One has a few pretty ones), but since my counter space is extremely limited in my bathroom they weren’t really an option.

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It’s far from a perfect solution, and I will probably be changing it up at some point in the future, but it works for now.  I don’t at all like the hooks I have my bracelets on, but I already had them on hand so I’m using them until I can find something that will work better, and this system is infinitely better than the jumbled mess I’ve been dealing with for so long.  Baby steps.

What do you use to organize your jewelry? Do you have any tips or suggestions for me?  I’d love to hear your ideas!

New to my 31 Day Blogging Challenge?  You can catch up on all the posts here.



Trying New Things: Day 24


Day 24: Spray Tan

Back in my twenties I had an affinity for tanning beds.  I liked them for two reasons:  1)they gave my pasty Alaskan albino skin a more healthy hue, and 2) they warmed me up on many frozen days during the long Alaskan winters.

But now I’m older, wiser, and more scared of skin cancer, so I’ve resigned myself to having pasty white skin, even in Texas (because, helllo…it’s way too hot to go outside).

I’ve been intrigued by the spray tan thing for a while, and Jerm encouraged me to go for it this month, so today I tried it for the first time.

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I was kind of nervous that I was going to walk out looking like a Cheeto, so I took the girl at the counter’s advice and went for a level one.  I didn’t take a photo of the results, but the difference is minimal so i think if I ever try again I’ll go for the level two shade.  It was quick and painless, although admittedly frivolous.  It’s supposed to last 7-10 days and I recommend this method for my frozen Alaskan friends.  Yes, it costs more, and no, it doesn’t keep you warm, but it’s better than skin cancer, right?

Have you ever tried a spray tan?  Were you happy with the results?

New to my 31 Day Blogging Challenge?  You can catch up on all the posts here.



Trying New Things: Day 23


Day 23: Japanese food

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This wasn’t what I had on my to-try list today, but Uncle John took us out to a Japanese hibachi for dinner so I changed it last-minute. It worked out well for me, too, because I hadn’t yet conquered what was actually on my to-try list.

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I’ve never been to a Japanese restaurant or tried any variety of Japanese food (except for my attempt at sushi earlier this month), so I didn’t really know what to expect, but let me tell you – it was pretty stinkin amazing.  My favorite part was the grilled veggies and I even ate COOKED CARROTS and LIKED them! (Huge deal for me.)

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The hibachi master (okay, I have no idea what they’re really called) really seemed to enjoy his job and put on a nice show for us with his knife and spatula twirling and giant flames.  Even Mad and Susannah ate just about everything that was put in front of them. (Huge deal number two.)

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I even ate my entire meal with chopsticks so I could get the full experience, which is another first for me.  How did I get to be thirty-five without ever trying chopsticks before?

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Doesn’t that look delicious?  Have you ever tried Japanese food before?  What did you think?

New to my 31 Day Blogging Challenge?  You can catch up on all the posts here.