The New Routine

Well….these days we are up to 2 dogs and 3 cats. One dog is only temporary- he was picked up by animal control and had an outdated microchip that led back to Lucky Lab Rescue & Adoption, so he’s crashing here until we can find his owners (or get him a new home, since there’s no sign of them yet).

The zoo consists of:

  • Dutch: our one year old dog
  • Pippet: our temporary foster dog, who’s at least  a year but could be older then that
  • Zsa Zsa: my 5 year old cat
  • Luigi: my 4 year old cat
  • Henry: Matt’s 6 year old cat

Left to right: Zsa Zsa, Luigi, Henry

 

It’s a bit much, but we’re figuring it out and trying our best to keep our house clean and not smelling like a dirt pit. I thought I’d share how we handle it all, since we’ve fostered dogs short term before we’ve got kind of a groove for when it happens.

5:00am – Matt gets up to get ready for student teaching and he gets me up (begrudgingly). I immediately take the dogs out and sit outside with them for about 15-20 minutes so they can do their business and run off their energy. We’re very lucky that both dogs are pretty low energy and that they get along fine, we’re also very lucky to have a good sized fenced in yard.

until 6:00am – I clean as much as I can around the house while Matt gets ready for school and the animals do their thing. This morning that meant doing dishes, washing down surfaces (kitchen counter, kitchen table, end tables, coffee table, bar), and sweeping all of downstairs.

6:00am-until I leave for work – If we didn’t have 2 dogs, 6am would be my regular wake up time to get ready for work so I do my hair, make up, eat breakfast, iron my clothes, and make lunch. If the dogs start rough housing they go back in the yard where there’s more space for it, they also go in the yard while the cats eat breakfast because they’re scavengers. When it’s time for work Pippet goes in the crate (until we know that we can trust him in the house), Dutch gets sequestered to the first floor, and the cats generally stick to the office and the guest room to snooze the day away.

Late afternoon/early evening- When Matt gets home in between student teaching and his job he lets the dogs out to do their business and run off energy, we usually cross paths. Once he’s gone, if he’s working that night, I sit outside with the dogs for a bit longer  then in we go to do a load of laundry (if needed) and make dinner. If Matt’s not home for dinner I eat like crap, if he is we have a sit down meal. Dog dinner time is WONDERFULLY easy because they don’t try to steal from each other and they gobble it up in under 5 minutes.

Early evening/night- If Matt doesn’t have work that night we watch a movie, if he does I try to get a project or more cleaning done around the house or in the yard

9:30pm- We start settling in and getting cozy for bed, usually we watch a quick show on Netflix (right now it’s the latest episode of Supernatural). I fight to stay awake until at least 10:15.

Before bed- Let the dogs out one more time while we feed the cats again.

10:30- I’m out cold!

Pippet (which I think will stick until he finds a home)…. aka Brownie aka Nicolas Dog Cage aka Sir Michael The Great. I change his name frequently as a tactic to not get attached.

 

So there you go, a day in the Sandpaper & Glue house! Whew!

99 cent graphics

Good afternoon all!

I am feeling SUPER under the weather so this week will be slow on the home front, but I thought I’d share a little Etsy shop I stumbled upon. Popalicious advertises on the sidebar of The Shabby Creek Cottage and I fell in love when I clicked over.

The shop sells dozens of 99 cent graphics, which are all emailed to you so you can print them and use them as you choose. There’s also a bunch of specials, I did the buy 3 get 1 free.

I’m starting think about wedding colors and designs and things are erring towards the vintage side so I scooped up the following 3 images (which I will receive in the color you see here and in black and white):

The shop will switch out the monogrammed P for any letter you want, I chose M.

 

They are sent without the watermark and without the number in the bottom corner, and honestly even if I change my mind on what things are going to look like for the wedding I only spent $2.97 so it’s not a big deal- I’d rather have it now then completely forget about it in a year when I actually need them.

I figure these images may come in handy when I design our wedding invitations, or maybe when I design my centerpieces. And if not, well they’d look cute in frames or in our scrapbook any way!

 

It’s Curtains for You

In my One Year Later post, I left you with a bedroom that looked like this:

It was ok, just sort of average and doing it’s thing without commanding any extra attention.

A few days ago I hand stamped our tv stand and I was particularly careful to crop the pictures because I also (as you may have guessed) got new curtains! I had about a million sets of Big Lots curtains, acquired over years of apartment living, and now we are officially a fancy curtain only household. And by fancy I mean either my  Nonna sewed them or I spent more then $10 per panel on them.

I’ve been wanting new bedroom curtains for oh, about a year now but it’s really hard for me to spend money on something like that. Curtains are  expensive. My new curtains were $25 a panel, and we needed four. But it was oh so worth it for this basket woven goodness:

Texture! Sheen! Burlapy!

I am in love with how they look in the room, and when it comes down to it, it was worth spending the money to really love how it looks in a room I spend a lot of my time in. Also, I plan to have these curtains for years so $100 on something I’m going to enjoy everyday for many days seems pretty worth it.

Originally I super wanted gold curtains, I actually had my hand on gold zebra striped curtains and really had to talk myself out of them. At the end of the day I want the bedroom to be unique, but also serene. And gold zebra stripes don’t really say “serene.”

I went with a texture instead of a pattern because we’ve already got patterns with the chair and the comforter set and one more would have just been too much (even for me).

Also, I have a really hard time photographing my bedroom because the light is so orange-y in there and I just have a point and shoot camera, but trust that it looks lovely in there. Also, moving the lamp from next to the bed to behind the chair made an unusually large impact on the room. It’s much less cluttered and easier on the eye when you walk in and now it looks more like a little reading nook then a random chair in a corner.

They have grommets! Man I love grommets! The living room curtains and sun room sliding door curtains have grommets as well (metal circular hoops instead of a fabric pocket).

The curtains go all the way down to the floor, which wasn’t really necessary but it’s what I could find so I went with it. Also, I would normally recommend hanging curtains about 5 or 6 inches above the window to elongate the room, but our ceilings are really low and we’re not able to do that.

What a difference new curtains makes! I don’t hate this room nearly as much as I used to anymore, and Matt was on board with the change as well so that was encouraging. It’s just so much cozier and warmer in the room with heavy fabric, and the burlap look really ties in well with the navy dresser.

Happy Friday!! :)

Sponges: The Anti Stencil

Man, I love the look of stenciled walls. I long for a stenciled wall. Alas, I am absolutely not capable of stenciling. I’m not going to stop trying to, but I am going to recognize that the problem is me and not the paint, or the wall, or the stencil, or anything else I try to blame it on.

ANYWAY since I did not make it to the top 10 of the Vintage Revivals Epic Room Makeover (my entry is here) I’m taking it upon myself to make my bedroom epic. I already customized my bureau and I felt the need to customize my tv stand as well. I thought I’d try a stencil-like look without the chaos of a stencil.

Here she is before (& blurry, sorry):

Just a regular old Target tv stand we bought two years ago, I think it was around $60

Inspired by this post over at Vintage Revivals, I thought I’d try to use a sponge to fancy this stand up a bit. First I took a regular kitchen sponge, traced the circular bottom of a candle onto it with a Sharpie, then cut out my circle. I chose a candle only because when I walked around the house looking for things that were circles, the candle was the size I liked best. My method is highly technical.

Next, I took some leftover paint from our half bath and a painters tray and did a few test stamps on a piece of paper. It looked awesome. So I cleared out the shelves and put painters tape around my borders:

Boom!

This method is supposed to look imperfect, it’s how I got around the whole inability to stencil thing.  I went up and across stamping rows of circles with my sponge:

Sometimes I went top to bottom, sometimes I went across. Basically, the amount of paint on your sponge determines the look of the stamp and I wanted varied and random application.

I just dipped the sponge in the paint, wiped the excess off in the painters tray, and then stamped 4-5 times before reapplying new paint. Sometimes I pressed the sponge on hard with the palm of my hand, sometimes just around the edges- this method, and rotating the stamp as I went along, got me the look you see above.

The side wall circles don’t go all the way in against the back or the top, but for the back wall they do- I just cut the sponge in half to fill my gaps. It’s not perfect, but remember it’s not supposed to be.

Once I was done I decided it need just a little bit more somethin’ somethin’. I got some cream colored craft paint and an angled painters brush and filled in some of the spaces in between the circles:

I just did this at random, three on each side and four in the middle. It took two coats and less then fifteen minutes.

Overall the sponge stamping took just over an hour and the craft paint about fifteen minutes, which makes for a super easy facelift.

Ta da!

I think it looks awesome, the circle shape ties in with the pattern of both the bedspread and the chair in the room and the uneven stamping gives it this cool industrial vibe that I really dig.

Huzzah!

Overall I am really learning that just because I buy a piece of furniture one way doesn’t mean it has to stay that way. On big bang projects like this- projects that permanently change the look of something- I sit on it a bit and make sure it’s what I really want to do. But I don’t not alter something just because it’s fine the way it is- fine just doesn’t cut it for me.

On the other hand, Matt says it’s “kooky” and “interesting” which is code for he hates it. Sorry love!

Have you ever stamp furniture or walls before? Any tips to help me learn how to stencil? I’d love to hear from you!

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Linking up with:

House of Hepworths

Someday Crafts

The Shabby Creek Cottage

504 Main

Hi Sugarplum!

Super Delicious Chicken Puffs

We all pin so many ideas and recipes, but let’s take some action people! At least once a month, cook or bake something that you pinned and link it in the comments!

Yesterday I went to a birthday party so I thought it would be the perfect time to fulfill my Pinterest food challenge for the month! This recipe was so crazy easy, but it was a little time consuming. You can find the original recipe here, I did stray from it a bit.

Sweet nectar of the Gods.

Recipe:

  • 5-6 ounces cream cheese
  • 3/4 cup shredded chicken
  • 1.5 tsp adobo seasoning
  • 2 cans refrigerated crescent rolls (8 per can)
  • 1 egg

First things first, spread out all your crescent rolls and cut each triangle into two, then you’ll end up with 32 puffs:

Your triangles will be one of two sizes, long and lean or tall and chunky. It doesn’t really matter what the triangle looks like because it’s going to be all wrapped up anyway.

Mix the cream cheese, chicken, and adobo in a bowl and add a dollop to each crescent roll then fold all three corners in and around it to create a ball. Each one looks different, basically I just arranged it so that none of the filling wasn’t visible.

I fit all 32 of them on one baking tray then brush the stirred egg on top so it would have a nice golden crust when finished. Bake at 375* for 12-14 minutes and Voila!

Serve them heated up. 32 of these fed a party of 9, and they went fast. Also, I called them Chicken Balls and not chicken puffs… somehow I didn’t think that was a very “pinnable” name though… gotta be careful the kind of crowd you attract ya know?

So tell me… what Pinterest recipes have you tried lately??

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Linking up with:

House of Hepworths

Someday Crafts

504 Main

High 5 For Friday & LAST DAY TO VOTE

Hello! My friends, today is the last day to vote for me in the Vintage Revivals Epic Room Giveaway contest- so #1 on my High 5 for Friday list is yet another solicitation for votes. Just click here, scroll on down to the entries, and vote on #36! Pretty please? With a cherry on top? Hopefully I’ll make it to the top 10!

Numero dos on my list is definitely that we are getting another foster dog from Lucky Lab Rescue tomorrow! His name is Huck and we’re just going to have him for one night while his forever family gets ready for him, but he is a stud and I can’t wait to meet him! 70 pounds of labrador love FTW!

And it should come as no surprise at all that my little burrito nephew makes this list two weeks in a row. I got to see him last Sunday and will be going see him again this Sunday. Me and this little guy go together like peanut butter and jelly! Bacon and eggs! Cats and hairballs! So basically I can’t wait to see him.

Four on this list is SO SUPER AWESOME I can barely contain myself. I won a raffle on All Things Thrifty and a Silhouette Cameo printer is headed my way soon! Holy crap, batman I am going to do some awesome things with this printer. Instead of ink, the printer actually has a blade inside it. It cuts things like vinyl, fabric, and card stock so you can craft your little heart out all over the place. I have plans to monogram my dresser, to add film strip to my stairs, to stencil a wall. So. Many. Plans. Hopefully it arrives soon!

And last but not least, I’m super excited to be road tripping with two lovely colleagues today to an off campus meeting. This means not only a Friday out of the office, but a Friday spent with excellent company. I’m actually on the road right now- cross your fingers we don’t hit too much traffic!

Happy Friday! What rocked for you this week?

Wainscot for the half bath!

Thanks to Matt’s lovely family we had enough money in gift certificates to enter THE FINAL PHASE (please, read that epically) of the half bath redo! Woot woo!

When I last left you, our bathroom was looking like this:

egads.

 

The room used to have painted contact paper on the lower half and when Matt tried to remove it the wall came off as well. No bueno. We decided to leave it as is and cover it with wainscot, so two days ago I purchased two of these bad boys:

The whole kit & kaboodle all in one!

 

For some reason wainscot was crazy hard to find in person, so we ordered it online (free shipping at least) and it’ll be here in a few days. I contacted our handy dandy friend (who helped with our kitchen sink and built in shelving) and he’s agreed to come on board once again.

Here’s my best guess at what’s still to do:

  •  remove current baseboard
  • install wainscot
  • possibly paint wainscot (I think it may just be primed)
  • paint vanity and mirror
  • decorate

Hope fully it’ll be done in a few weeks!

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And one last thing, would you pretty please vote for me to win an Epic Room Makeover? All you have to do is scroll down to the entries here and click the little star under entry #36- no log ins, no connecting to Facebook, just a teensy tiny little click! <3