Friday, May 25, 2012

Built-in Desk

Our kids got their own computer a while back, but being the paranoid cautious mama, I wanted the computer in a central area of our house.  Just so that they knew at any moment I could check in and see what they were doing.
 So in the living room it landed, but the table took up a large chunk of living space - we worked around it for a over a year and it was fine.
However, now that we finally got around to our original plan of building a desk attachment to our book shelf, I wonder why it took us so long.  I feel like so many of the projects in this house fall under that category - 'should have done this a long time ago.'
It was a pretty basic project as well.  We cut the board to a 'desk' size then hauled it in the house.  I drew a curve to make it look less like a board and more like it belonged.  After that was cut out, I sanded, stained, and varnished the whole bit.
To anchor the desk to the shelving unit, we bolted it into place.  Now as long as the boys around here do not decide to use it as a diving board on the couch it should be able to serve our needs for a while.
These pictures make it look like this desk has lots of empty space around it, but in reality I tok these pictures when all the furniture was piled into the kitchen because we ad our carpet cleaned (another one of those, why didn't we do this a LONG time ago things).  Now I can happily lay on the living room floor without thinking about the creepy crawly things lurking in the carpeting.

Have a lovely day!

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Thursday, May 17, 2012

Sun hats for my sunshines

Last weekend my boys all left me home with only the girls, so what did we do (besides go out for dinner and shop)...
We made sun hats!  I had pinned a sun hat tutorial from Riley Blake Designs a while back.  
 The pattern called for 5/8" seam allowance - so I made the first one that way and found that it was a bit too small for the 5 year old princess - so that one was for the little gem instead.
 For the larger hat I used the SAME pattern but only used 1/4" seam allowance and it seems to work for her!
 The pattern also called for two 'straps' that would tie under the chin to keep it in place - I decided that I wanted to just be able to plop the hats on their heads, so no ties.  Who knows I may regret that choice and make new ones later this (windy) summer!
 Now, I just need to find a cute pattern for a little boys hat, as we'll need at least 2 of those for the summer.  {Sometimes girl's things are so much easier to find patterns for}
Here is to hoping that we have a lovely, sunshiney summer!
This picture was taken in the bright sunshine and it makes me smile!
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Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mothers' Day!

A happy day to all the other mothers out there!  Kind of nice to have a day set aside for the people in our life to think about mom - not that I am neglected, but at times I think that I am just a means to an end.  Maid to wash and clean-up, taxi driver to events, nurse to mend the bumps, cook to make their meals, etc.  So I appreciate when they take the time to remember that there is an actual person behind the role of mother - even if it is kind of a Halmark Holiday.

I have gardeners in my life - and although I did not acquire a green thumb, my mother is the 3rd generation with that attribute!  Some how it missed me, but my sister was blessed with one (4th generation) - oh well, I have many other interests.  To celebrate mother's day this year, I made my mom and grandma these sweet gardening (or cleaning) aprons.  I actually gave them to them a couple of weeks ago when I saw them, it is way more fun to watch someone open a gift that you made, don't you think?

My other grandma is a baker, so she got a kitchen apron (but silly me I forgot to take pictures of it)!  I think I got those gene's - when the house is crazy, upside down messy and I do not know where to start, I wander into the kitchen.  First, I bake some bread, make a batch of cookies, start supper - then I wonder what I should clean!
Most of all today I feel lucky that I could give gifts to both of my grandmas.  I love that my kids will have memories of my grandparents (all 4 are still kicking!), as these people are a huge part of who I am.  I just wish that we did not live so far away, perhaps we cherish the moments even more because we are separated by miles.
Have a lovely Mothers' Day!

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Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Separation of Germs

In the past week or so, real life has completely monopolized my time.  I did realize that this mom canNOT handle a full time job.  I usually avoid personal life on here, but I will just let you in on a bit of my craziness.  In the past week, I have scheduled games for our entire local Little League - 350+ players on 36ish teams in 9 divisions as well as the combined games with the other near by league!  It's been real.  Now they all have a seasons, and I have to get them umps - on going battle.
Oh and I made 70 dozen buns for my cousins wedding!  {Most were in my freezer as I've known for a while how many I needed, but I did save a batch for last week - great planning procrastinating by me}  It was a fun way to be a part of the day, but keep out of the way at the same time.

I have problems in my house, but chief among them is this unsightly drawer...
 ... it gave me twitches EVERY night.  Just the thought of the germs/crusties/stickiness in this drawer was enough to make me pin this (eons ago):

Source: etsy.com via Amy on Pinterest

Well, I finally got around to starting my own version while the kids were on spring break.  They each painted their own rectangle {it was a small and easy enough project for them to handle, plus what kid does not love to slop with paint?}

Then they all picked a font for their letter (first one in their name). At first I was being a bit influential, and then I realized that I did not care AT ALL what kind of letter they picked.
Once we has the letters all drawn in and painted I put eye screws on the back to hang them up, however I drug my feet on actually hanging them up because I could just see my dear kids hanging from/pulling on the hooks and drywall does not hold all that well.  So the next thing I would have was hooks ripped off the wall and gross holes to repair.
So as patient as my best guy is he helped me with a solution: 1/4" think strip of aluminum he had in a 'stock' pile at work (sometimes I love living with someone who has access to this kind of stock).
He then showed me how to drill and make thread for screws in the metal to attach the wood pieces.  I love using power tools and learning new things all in the same day!
{I still have 2 more to make for the littles, but as with the additional scooter, I am waiting for some wood to show up!}
That picture above my project was painted by my grandpa; it was his take on a picture I has taken on our adventure in Norway!
Now we'll discuss photos.  I have a low end 'fancy' camera - the Cannon Rebel dSLR, and I like it, however I do not think that I have reached its potential in photo abilities.  I also have Photoshop elements on my computer, which I use mostly to lighten and fix color casts on my pictures.  Below is the same picture as the first one in this post, I think I did something with this one as well, but I cannot remember for sure what it was.
The first picture is using the PWs vintage action.  I just like how with that action you can read the saying better than in any of the other photos.  I did not save it as a very big photo, so you may not actually be able to read it, however it says: What matters is the person you are when no one is looking.  Maybe if they read it enough times it will sink in; perhaps be that little voice in their head someday that keeps them on the right path!
Have a lovely day.

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