TTUT-I Need Decorating Advice

Lilith: You should be decorating professionally.
Norm: Doing you folks a favor is one thing. Anymore of this interior decorating junk could really eat into my reputation as a lazy, beer-guzzling lump of mashed potatoes.
Frasier: But Norm, you have a gift.
Norm: A gift? Try a curse, pal. I spent my whole damn life trying to cover up the fact that I have a great sense of color and I always know where to put the ottoman. -Cheers

with Impulsive Addict and Seriously Shawn

Alright readers, I need some help. We have this beautiful great room that is a living room/dining room combo with big vaulted ceilings. The problem is I’m left with this big expanse of wall that desperately needs decorating.

I was thinking of painting a triptych (3 canvases for one painting) and centering that in the middle of the wall, and  getting rid of the photograph on the left.



I would LOVE your suggestions on what I can do for this wall;  I just need a little inspiration. I wish I could afford to go out and buy some amazing piece of artwork, but for now I’m going to need to go the DIY route. Point me to links, photos, ideas, you name it, I’m interested. Help me figure out how to make this room work!



Pin-Win: Hide Your Router With Old Books

Hodgins: So, for kicks you read —
Cam: Feminist trash. You know — woman finds her power, leaves her oppressive husband, discovers freedom and fulfillment with an artist who knows how to cry and make love like an animal.
Hodgins: So, sex books.
Cam: Pretty much, yeah.-Bones

Since we got our built ins, I’ve been completely satisfied with how they look, but for one thing: the electronics shelf. I couldn’t stand the how awful the router and modem looked. I won’t even get into the cable box, because I know that would be a royal pain to hide, and I do like checking the clock. So I went on a mission to figure out how to hide the cords, router and modem instead.

I found this great idea on Pinterest, from Apartment Therapy. She used an old book and just cut the pages out and plopped the router inside the cover instead. I decided that’s what I would do too.

Cutting books up makes me cringe, no matter how cheap. So I was careful to keep the pages intact, so I could use the paper jackets to cover them and still have the books to read, just in case. I also only had to cut two books to make this project work. The rest I either already had, or I found on sale at the used book store. Can you tell which books are hollow and which aren’t? You can if you look from the side, but straight on they look intact to me!

So here is the mess that the electronics shelf was in before:

hide your router with old books

Look at that hot mess. There’s just crap everywhere.

And this is what it looks like now:

old books to hide electronics

I think I could probably put a few more books on the shelf and hide the antenna of the router a little more, and maybe add one more book to the far right to hide the plugs. I could also find a book that’s the same size as the Playstation 3, and one for the wii and cover those up. Still, it looks so much better than before.

old books to hide router and other electronics

So what do you think? Have you had a pin-win lately?

2012 To Do List: The Results are In

At the beginning of the year I came up with my 2012 To Do List. Let’s check in and see how I did. It was full of lofty goals, but I think I made a fairly good dent in it. Of course our loss created a lot of changes, but with the addition of our rainbow, some of those Roo goals still have a positive spin. I’m also happy to report that some of the goals motivated us to do other things around the house not even on the list. I’m amazed at how much we got done in just one year!

2012 To-Do List

1. Replace the lighting in all 3 bathrooms.

2. Replace the hallway light fixtures.

3. Install a ceiling fan in the master bedroom.

4. Replace the dining room and front entry light fixtures.

5. Install a custom closet organizer.

6. Buy Monkey a new kennel.

7. Paint mural for the nursery

8. Come up with Halloween costumes

9. Do at least 1 or 2 Halloween Crafts

10. Increase online earnings to pay for all the stuff we need to buy this year

11. Start a savings fund for our future baby

12. Sell the Subaru

13. Save up a big down payment for a truck

14. Buy a truck (Jeep!)

15. Pay off Jeep

16. Start landscaping the backyard

17. Start landscaping the front yard

18. Get Nursery ready by September (Obviously this one no longer counts, but I did do a great deal of it this year. It’s going to be ready by June!)

19. Make decorations for Sassy’s bridal shower

18. Host Sassy’s bridal shower

20. Build up savings

21. Buy padded flooring for office/gym

22. Buy area rug for family room

23. Buy area rug for great room

23. Get certified in infant CPR

24. walk at least 5 times per week

25. Buy VHS to DVD converter

26. Convert old home movies to DVD as a present to our parents (epic fail! Hopefully next year)

27. Have wedding dress cleaned

28. Carve Pumpkins with Match

29. Write up our wills

30. Meet at least one bloggy friend this year

31. Go camping at least once this year

32. Buy a side table or buffet table for the dining room (saving up for this still)

33. Learn to light a fire in our firepit (I haven’t officially done this, but gun to my head I’m sure I could figure it out!)

34. Make window seat for the nursery

35. Get at least 100 readers (129 and counting!! THANK YOU!!!)

36. Go on at least one trip with Match this Spring

37. Organize Garage

38. Finish pregnancy journal and have it printed or make a homemade book

39. Order mixbook from last year

40. Quit coffee (errr I quit and then started again, but I only drink half caf. So it sort of counts!)

41. Do something special for our 2 year anniversary P1060595

42. Survive labor and delivery

43. Lose 5 pounds

44. Build up the courage to start trying to conceive again

45. Make 2 to 3 handmade Christmas decorations before December

46. Make at least one homemade canvas print from one of my photos

47. Sew bucilla stocking for Roo48. Go back to the Christmas tree farm

49. Make Roo a Christmas Ornament (I now have 2, plus an angel that honor her!)

50. Make homemade gifts for Christmas

51. Spray paint kitchen hinges

52. Paint bathroom vanities

53. Paint doors


54. Paint baseboards


Whew!! We got a lot done on the house, and I’m happy to say I feel a sense of accomplishment at what we were able to get done. I’m still working on the list for 2013. I have a feeling I’ll get a lot done in the first half of the year, and then it’ll probably drop off for awhile while we settle into life with Piglet.

How did you do with your 2012 goals? Did you complete any big items on your to do list?

My Parents’ Visit aka Project Week

I’m gonna to have to reinvent you. Break you down completely, and build you up from scratch. -Jenna, 30 Rock

My parents just left this morning, and I’m happily re-cooperating from their 6 day visit. So much of the visit was wonderful, but 6 days is a long time to have house guests, and it is so nice having the place to myself again.

While they were here, they gave us a wonderful gift-built ins for the family room! They turned out better than I ever could have hoped. The room looks so cozy and put together now. Here’s a few shots of my worker bees getting everything built.

And here is a terribly fuzzy before shot. from Halloween, but it shows how we had it decorated prior to the built ins. See how cluttered it made the room, having Monkey’s crate in there? The dark bookcases made the room look so small as well. I could kick myself for not taking better before shots!


And here is the room now. I am so in love with how it turned out! I love having the tv off the floor stand display and mounted on the wall. I think it makes it almost look like it’s in it’s own frame. I can’t wait to fill the shelves with fun knit knacks too.

Aren’t they beautiful? My Pops did an amazing job. We are so grateful that all we paid was the cost of materials, and then we fed them for the week. 🙂 It was a steal!

Now we’re doubly motivated to paint our kitchen cabinets white to match. But I think those will have to wait til after Piglet is born.

The rest of the trip we managed to squeeze in some relaxation time by the firepit, and we enjoyed lunch downtown. My mama took me shopping, and she bought Piglet’s baby shower gift early-a pack ‘n play! It’s so cute, and it’ll be perfect for travel and for when Piglet is a newborn and sleeping in our room.

Even though my mom and I had a mini argument or two regarding Piglet and when she’s going to visit (more on that later) all in all it was a great week. I’m so grateful for my parents and all of their help. It was so nice having them in our home and being able to work on a project together.

Now I can’t wait to decorate for Christmas next month!!

My Pinterest Fail

[Rachel tries to install baby-proofing things in the apartment.]
Rachel: Are you saying that women can’t do it?
Joey: Women can do it; you can’t. -Friends

We finally had a cool day on Friday, and I was feeling a bit better from this nasty cold I picked up. I decided to take advantage of the weather and work on a DIY project.
I got these old pallets months ago, and they’ve just been gathering dust while I gather my motivation. I wanted to do this shelf project I found on Pinterest, that came from Little Lucy Lu.

Aren’t they cute? Yeah, I thought so too. I followed her instructions, and cut my pallet. That’s when I realized my pallet wasn’t as nice as hers. I probably should have used a Poly Pallet Cover, because it was all warped and cracked from being outside for months. Mine looked like this, and I was just over it.

So I scraped that project, and may attempt it in the future, with a better pallet.

Have you tried a Pinterest project and failed miserably? Or is that just me?