Thoughts on Blogging & Life

I’m coming up on 3 years of blogging at the end of this month and I’ve never really shared my plans and thoughts on the blog so I thought I’d take a minute today to do so.

My goals for the blog are small, in fact, I can sum them up in one bullet point:

  • To inspire any woman (or man) that thinks they can’t do something to do it anyway– whether it be to stencil a wall or climb a mountain

When I bought my house I had no idea how to do anything. None. But I read and read and read and read, and now I genuinely feel like with the right tools I am capable of doing anything I want. It’s an amazing feeling of pride and independence and I strongly suggest you find something about yourself that makes you feel the same way.

This blog is small, with 6-7,000 visitors per month, but I hope if you’re reading that you enjoy it and that you’ll engage more because I think we can and should all empower and support one another. Once I realized I didn’t want to be a huge blog superstar I began to settle into what I’m doing and what my presence is and I’m enjoying it a lot more, 1-2 posts a week is manageable and enough to keep my creativity drive engaged.

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My list of personal goals, in relation to the blog, are a bit larger:

  • There are several furniture builds I have floating around in my head and hopefully in the next few months they’ll be executed and shared
  • I wish to share more about eating and the life I want to live… I’m thrilled by growing even just a tiny bit of my own food, and beginning a compost pile. Next summer I hope to add a rain bin. When we move in a few years I want chickens. I love going to the farmer’s market and eating what’s in season.
  • I’d love to start redoing furniture for others, so if you know me in real life or you live anywhere around Central Mass send me an email if you want some help painting or staining or redoing anything. Or if you pulled something off the side of the road because it was awesome and now you don’t know what to do with it, email me about that too.

 

Is there anything you feel like Sandpaper and Glue is missing? Or anything else you’d like to know about me? Leave it in the comments, send me an email, or ask me on Facebook!

Serving Tray Upcycle

This post is part of The Silhouette Challenge, which is a group of blog friends with a hefty addiction to crafting. Make sure you scroll all the way to the bottom of this post to find links to thirty other awesome projects!

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Ever since I bought a house my parents and grandparents have gotten in the habit of giving me boxes of junk every time I see them, and because I’m such a hoarder only about half of it makes it into the donation pile.

In the most recent box, was this rooster serving tray which was in good structural condition but completely not my style and a little banged up:

serving tray before

I gave it a few thin coats of Zinsser 1-2-3 spray primer, then a few very thin coats of Rustoleum’s Lagoon spray in satin:

middle- overspray Rustoleum Lagoon

 

Once all the paint was dry, and cured for a few days, I taped off the sides and painted the bottom (which was tile) with leftover white paint + primer from when I painted my bathroom tile. It took about 4 coats because I did it so carefully and because the Lagoon color kept seeping through.

blue and white serving tray

But then I thought it could use a little something-something more so I got out my Silhouette Cameo and played around with fonts until I found some that worked really well together for my quote:

upcycled tray with Seinfeld quote

Seinfeld anyone?

 

I printed the quote with Oracle vinyl and used transfer paper to get it on straight and level, then I painted 2 coats of polycrylic on top to seal it in (make sure it’s polycrylic and not polyAcrylic so it doesn’t yellow over time!)

upcycled serving tray with Seinfeld quote

If you’re  a Silhouette user and would like a copy of the file, email me at sandpaperandglue (at) gmail (dot) com. I’m happy to share if it’s for personal use!

What do you think? I think it’s such a fun addition to my bar and a great little inside joke.

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Want to Check Out More Silhouette Projects?

My Silhouette Challenge friends and I are all sharing projects on our blogs today, so check out the projects below for a wealth of Silhouette inspiration!

A Gift for the Bride-to-Be Silhouette Challenge: My Favorite Things My Favorite Things Keepsake Box Printable Tattoos for Crafters & DIYers Super Hero Backpacks Geometric Two Tone Shirt Refashion Instagram Paper Album Reasons I Love Daddy Ctrl Alt Del Pillows Outside Decor: DIY Pallet Board Sign Yo-Ho It's a Pirate Party How To Use Silhouette Sketch Pens Combining My Favorite Things, Baking and Crafting - July Silhouette Challenge Pride & Prejudice Subway Style Art Favorite Silhouette Challenge Just umm, Let it Go Temporary My Little Pony Tattoos Mike Holmes Baby Onesie Monogram It: A Memo Board Makeover Super Room Redo The Best Summer Ever Freebie and Tutorial Summertime Toes Crafty Girls Hair Accessories Holder Watercolor Wall Art Ice Cream Cone T-Shirt Sun Fun Shirt Family Wall Art: Scrabble Edition Serving Tray Upcycle Making Custom Rhinestone Designs Etched Glass Coasters Church Nursery Wall Quote

1. Just a Girl and Her Blog // 2. The Frill of Life // 3. A Time For Seasons // 4. The Thinking Closet // 5. Ginger Snap Crafts // 6. Grey Luster Girl // 7. Simply Kelly Designs // 8. Home At Eight // 9. Please Excuse My Craftermath… // 10. My Paper Craze // 11. Mama Sonshine // 12. Practically Functional // 13. Adventures in All Things Food // 14. Two Purple Couches // 15. Dragonfly & Lily Pads // 16. Sowdering About // 17. Cutesy Crafts // 18. My Mom Made That // 19. Pitter and Glink // 20. Pineapples And Pinecones // 21. Dream a Little Bigger // 22. McCall Manor // 23. TitiCrafty // 24. unOriginal Mom // 25. Persia Lou // 26. Lil Mrs Tori // 27. Home. Made. Interest. // 28. Sandpaper and Glue // 29. Silhouette School // 30. Creative Ramblings // 31. My Favorite Finds

Silhouette School: Guest Post

Hello! Today I’m guest posting over at Silhouette School all about how I added a vinyl quote to the wood slice in my guest room. Hop on over to check it out!

how to add vinyl to a wood slice

If you’re here from Silhouette School, thanks for clicking over! You may want to check out some of my most popular posts:

repurposed windows

built in desk

 

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new homeowner tips, 31 days, neutral home colors

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Stay in touch in between posts:

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GIVEAWAY: Painted Fox (Home Decor Awesomeness)

***This giveaway is now closed– Kelly, congrats on your win!!***

A few weeks ago Painted Fox started following me on Twitter and I ended up spending a good long time gazing longingly at all the amazing stuff in their store, so I put on my big girl pants and sent them an email asking if they’d like to collaborate. And they said YES! :)

The girls behind the store, Christine and Jen, are lovely and so so friendly- I’m thrilled to be able to offer one of YOU  a $50 gift certificate to their store.

giveaway painted fox treasures freeFrom their website:

Painted Fox is an online retailer, specializing in fabulous farmhouse décor! Our eclectic collection of vintage styled treasures has been hand picked for all of the spaces where you live your lovely life…and is sure to add a touch of farmhouse swag to your homestead!    At Painted Fox, it is our mission to offer you an unbeatable selection of home treasures at incredible prices.  

 

They sent me a few cute products to review, but their inventory changes constantly as they hunt down bargains and treasures to share so be sure to visit their site and take a look!

elephant ring holder painted fox

This little elephant now sits above my kitchen sink to hold my rings while I do the dishes, and when he’s not holding rings he still looks neat perking up the window sill.

 

small dish with heart logo

This past weekend my girlfriends and I went to Newport, RI and stayed in a little condo above a beauty shop. The shop was kind enough to leave us each little bags of samples, so now this dish holds them all on my sink. And when the samples are used up, it can switch gears and hold my jewelry and glasses while I shower.

 

small blue painted plate

This plate is absolutely perfect adding a splash of color to our bar while holding wine charms and a bottle opener.

 

And now on to the good part- THE GIVEAWAY! Literally all you need to do is leave a comment below (about anything! tell me how you’d use these accessories, find something on their site you love and share what it is, or just say hi!).  

Make sure to enter your email address so I can get in touch with you, and you’re entered. Winner will be notified Monday July 7th. 

giveaway

Homemade Lavender Lotion

Gift certificates are my favorite, easy, go-to presents for people… but I hate to just hand a card to someone without giving them something to open so I try to add a little trinket to go along with it.

For my sister-in-laws birthday a few weeks ago I went with a little jar of home made lotion, and it was so so easy. If you’ve been following along for a little bit, you know I partnered up with Stephenson Personal Care to develop DIY soap recipes- they recently asked if I wanted to give lotion making a try and I was allllll over it.

Here’s what you’ll need:

home made lotion ingredient recipe

As far as the jar goes, I used a glass jar leftover from some roasted red peppers and just painted the lid with craft paint. I think a salsa jar would work well too– anything with a wide enough opening that you could reach your hand in. It’d work with a pump too, the lotion isn’t super thick.

You can really use any scent you want, and make it any color you want. I went with lavender because I recently gave her some DIY lavender soap so I thought they’d pair well together. Then I followed the instructions on my food coloring box to color the lotion- but don’t worry, it doesn’t make your skin lavender too. :)

 

how to make home made lotion

Once it’s in the jar and colored I add just a small amount of aloe vera gel to give it a little more conditioning (especially in the summer time!) and enough lavender drops that it was even throughout but not overwhelming. You can stir with a spoon or whatever you have on hand.

easy DIY lotion

I used my Silhouette Cameo to cut out a monogram for the lid and a label for the jar, and it looks so so cute. I can’t wait to make a batch for myself!!

home made DIY lotion recipe

So what do you think? What scent would you make it? I was thinking I might try lemon, but something about yellow lotion is a little… unappealing… so maybe I’ll color it blue ;)

 

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Disclosure: I received the Stephenson’s Personal Care lotion base for free but paid for the other ingredients and created the recipe myself. And as always, this is something I’d love doing, and recommend to you, with or without the partnership.

Built In Shoe Organization

My closet is in a constant state of disrepair, I have A LOT of clothes. And shoes. And purses. And honestly, if they don’t have an easily accessible place to go they’re going to end up either in the laundry basket forever or on the floor. I’m sorry, clothes. I can’t help it.

closet before

 

The plastic draws are a real hassle to tuck in all the way, and they leave my shoes in a jumble, and I can’t see them all. The wire shelves all the way to the right are awful because I have a lot of stilettos and they fall through, so I added a rag towel and now the cats push off the shoes to nap there. No good. So I decided to turn this little section of my closet into an organized shoe heaven.

Yesterday the ReStore had old wood shelves for $1 each, so I bought three (and only ended up needing 1.5!). I used my jigsaw to cut them down both length and width wise so they’d fit in the wasted space on the righthand side of my closet (a circular saw would have been better but I don’t have one). Then, I took the scrap wood from cutting down the newel posts on my salvaged endtables and used my miter saw to chop them into braces.

in process closet update

 

A laser level and some painters tape helped me figure out the spacing for my shelves, and the impact driver was awesome for pilot holes and screwing everything into the walls. I tested for studs but there were none, so I just used some long heavy duty screws…. these shelves aren’t holding more then 5 pounds of weight so I’m not too worried about it.

Since I had to cut the wood I bought width wise, I realized that in addition to shelves I would have enough wood to make some ledges for my heels as well.

built in shoe organization

 

The shelves have a brace on either side with the shelf on top and caulk along the back and they’re not going anywhere. The ledges each have 3 screws to hold them into the wall and they’re on there firmly as well. Then I’ve got one little green container for my Old Navy flip flops and one of the plastic draws to corral my flats and nicer sandals.

I could realllly used one more shelf so I don’t have to pile my wedges, but it would have taken away from clothes storage so that’s a no go.

easy DIY built in closet

 

One day I’ll clear out the whole closet and give it a fresh coat of paint, but that seems more like a dreary winter day project you know? This only took about 2 hours, I made all the cuts outside so I didn’t have to sweep up loads of sawdust and then organized it all right away.

I am IN LOVE with those shoe ledges, I’m so glad they worked out!

Now, in addition to painting, I need to continue working on replacing hangers (death to plastic hangers!) and pick up some cute cloth or woven baskets to replace the plastic ones on the floor… but those things will come in time. I have more important things to spend my money on right now.

State of Me

My friend Ashlie at Simple Mama in Massachusetts posted today in response to a journal prompt, and I really liked the idea (perhaps because I require all my students to respond to journal prompts throughout the semester? haha),  so I thought I’d respond too.

The prompt is from Danielle from Sometimes Sweet and says: 

This week, write a “State of Me” address. Write about how you’re really doing- what you’ve been thinking, what you’ve been up to. What have you accomplished lately? Where is there room for growth? Where are you right now in life and where are you headed? Current joys, currents sadness…write it all out. Discuss the current state of YOU. 

 

I have a LOT to say about this,  I’ve been really working on me a lot and now that summer’s here I’m working on me even more.

live create tell the story

 

I’ve been getting allergy shots since January. Sometimes I feel like nothing at all is changed, some days I feel ok. Some days I get wild reactions and feel like death. I’m sticking with it though, for at least a year, and then we’ll see. My allergies are so severe that it was never going to be a quick fix, as much as I wanted it to be. I just want to snuggle all the dogs and cats in the world and still be able to breathe. I’d also like to maybe be able to mow the lawn someday. Without an epi pen.

don't give up

I have made a huge and conscious effort to be more deliberate about what I put in my body. This is partly because of my allergies and partly because I’ve gained like 20 pounds in two years (UGH! WHY!). I have gotten reallllly into going to the local farms and eating what’s in season, as well as choosing organic foods at the market whenever possible (expect some recipe collaborations posts soon!). I also downloaded the MyFitnessPal app for my phone so I can force myself to look at what I am eating and how much I am sitting around. I’m not interested in a wild diet and fast radical signs of change, I’m looking for steady improvement that can become a lifestyle. It’s hard. I basically love eating and tend to disregard whether or not I’m actually hungry.

 

Life is, despite the previous 2 bullet points of frustration, really good right now. In fact, I would argue that this period in my life will end up being one of my favorites and best. I have been “finished” with my formal education for years and feel confident I’m on the right career path, I’m in a positive and healthy marriage with the best man I know, I have a house that I love, I have long term friends that are kind and generous, and I have figured out my hobbies. Woah. That’s a lot of good stuff. I am as at peace as I can be with the fact that within the next 5-10 years I’m going to lose loved ones, welcome new loved ones into the world, move to a new house in an undetermined location, and at several points have panic attacks about my finances. So I better soak up all this awesome while I can.

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And on a much simpler note, summer is bringing some real good times:

  • I’m headed to the Grossology exhibit at the Museum of Science this weekend
  • I’m headed to Newport, RI next weekend with some super fun girl friends
  • We have some really fun, relaxed weddings on the docket
  • We are pretty much always ready for a BBQ
  • We are taking my nephew for 2-3 days next month and I have SO MANY fun things planned

 

So now why don’t you join in… how are you doing? :)