Burlap Spring Banner

I am so ready for Spring,  it's still cold here, but I decided it's time to decorate anyway.  I made an easy Spring Banner out of scrapbook paper, which actually looks like burlap.  

Since real burlap frays so bad when it's cut (and I had this paper on hand),  I decided to try to make an easy imitation of those cute burlap banners that are all over now.  I printed the letters on cardstock, cut them out, and glued them on.  (You could simply print it directly onto the paper if you want to try to line it up.)  

Looks like burlap, right?

Happy Spring!

Pillow Talk

I'm sharing my "rule of thumb" that I always follow when putting patterns together. I prefer a neutral base (walls or furniture) that you can add color to. I change-up my throw pillows all the time, usually with the of seasons. This is my no-fail, inexpensive way to get a new look.

I can appreciate a sofa full of colorful printed pillows, but on a limited budget, the attempt can sometimes go wrong.  I believe, (just my opinion now) that if you're on a budget and really don't know where to start, you need to abide by these few rules:)

1. Use one print per "category."  

Let me explain. I like to organize fabrics into three categories and choose one from each to decorate with:

solid color texture

Here's an example:

My family room sofa is neutral. Poop brown really.  To add some flair, it has pillows in an Ikat print (floral category), Zebra Chenille (geometric), and solid Cable Knit (texture.)

Again, I followed my "rule" in the living room, where I have a Suzani Print (my floral), a chevron (geometric), and a fluffy thing (texture) layered over a neutral (Greek Key.)

2. Display only an odd number of pillows.
Three or Five, never two or four.  
Odd numbers are more appealing to the eye. I heard somewhere to use this rule on everything from landscaping to cake decorating, and in our case- children!
(3 shrubs, not 2, in the flower bed, five roses on the cake , not 4...get it?) Once you start to notice, it really does make a difference.

3. Above all, the pillows should be comfortable. 
People should actually want to sit with the pillow, not move it to be comfortable. 
Your kids, spouse, or (in our case) pets should be able to actually use the pillows. 

Try pillows made with down feathers if you haven't before, they make furniture more inviting, and softer. 


I won't waste money on super expensive pillows, only to turn around and cringe when everyone is throwing them around!  Let's face it, with five kids and this dog, they get used a lot. I've sewn many of them myself, so that I can change them up easily or say "oh well"  when the dog ruins them and the kids spill!  

 Sturdy fabric with well-sewn seems and down inserts keeps them comfy while taking a beating!

Thanks for looking!

Control Freak

Sometimes you just have to give in and realize, you have no control over anything.  I need to wear one of these bad boys... 

 I will be the first to admit, I pretty much run the household and coordinate everything that takes place here. I plan and execute, solo. All was well, until a kidney stone stopped me in my tracks. I was forced to give up everything for an entire 3 days.  Now, I have never, ever, been so incapacitated in my life.  (I was the lady who tried to leave the hospital 24 hours after delivering my kids.) 

 So this was not only physically painful, but mentally too...we were set to leave for Disney in 3 days. Oh and I hadn't packed one darn bag for anyone... nothing, because I always wait until the last minute.  Somehow, I threw it all together and somehow, we made it there, kidney stone included, but no pain (an answer to prayers). 

Disney itself could be a whole different post. Let's just say that I am not, by any means, a "Mickey-kind-of-Girl."  Whatever,... make your faces, talk about me, I'm not. Neither is the spouse. We only went for the kids. I hate crowds, lines, greasy food, and time schedules.  There's nothing relaxing about this trip. Add in a dash of kidney stones, and this is not looking good.

But I have learned some valuable lessons about letting stuff slide, giving up control, and being thankful for being healthy. I was O.K. when my "good camera" hit the pavement in Hollywood Studios: Day 2 (and is now a goner), or when my son "misplaced" his new ipod in the villa and it was mysteriously swallowed up and never found, or when I forgot the not-so-great (backup)camera at our  Princess Dinner, and who cares that it rained half of the trip.  I decided to forgo "perfect" for this vacation and focus on having fun and spending some much needed time with my husband and kids, all together. 

So, I may have envisioned our trip to appear a little like this... 

Google Image

when it looked more like this...

Crappy i phone pic
I'm alright with that, because we had a great time and we are healthy, how often that's taken for granted!


Happy New year!  
I'm still in the process of taking down the Christmas decorations, which is bittersweet, it went by too fast. I usually get inspired to move furniture, organize, repaint, or tear down walls this time of year.  (Wish I could)  

I decided to start small.  Call me selfish, needy, self-indulgent, even territorial.  I don't care.  I'm claiming a little space in this house as my own.  I won't say it's "off-limits" to kids, but it's limited, as in, they can hang up their backpacks in there.  I moved all of their video game crap to the "playroom"  that we've never used, in the basement.  I'm getting ready to finally set up that Command Center I promised myself I'd do.  I put together a mental image of what I want, within reason, of course.  This is one spot where I don't even need to consider what anyone else wants or likes.  None of that, "Well, it's too girly, there's too many boys in the house for that rug/paint/furniture, etc..."

So I've challenged myself to see if I can bring this together for really cheap. 

I'm using keeping the bamboo desk and she is getting a makeover in red, inspired by her cousin piece below...

So far, so good, I snagged this rug for 70% off at rugsusa.com 

I've always wanted a reason for an acrylic chair to exist in my life...

and here she is, found at Amazon, for just over $100. 
 (but for some reason I'm having this recurring vision of someone tilting back in it and the legs cracking off like a cheap outdoor stack-able...I'll let you know, it's still "in transit" so we'll see.)

I bought a couple of funky pillows, (I'll surprise you later) and I have a need  for these beauties in here too.  They are not in the budget, so I have to do these myself somehow.

crate and barrel
As for my paint color, I'm guessing gray but I also want to carry through the molding from the landing zone, on the lower portion of the walls.

Stick with me... this should be interesting!