Jars as light fixtures?

Yesterday my girl Emma posted about using jars as updated light fixtures and had trouble finding a jar that would work, so I told her I’d test out a few from my hoard to see if I could make anything work.

I have an intense glass jar hoard: sauce jars, jam jars, peanut butter jars, salsa jars…. you name it, I’ve got it. And ultimately I found that the jar from the weird peanut butter my fiance likes (Natural Teddie Peanut Buter) was the one that had the largest mouth, and therefore the one that not only fit in my fixture but also fit over my regular sized light bulb.

Before I share with you pictures I’m going to ask that you kindly refrain from judging the following areas of my bathroom:

  • The weird spot by the mirror where the previous owners stopped tiling, which is perfectly located in a spot far enough out that one couldn’t just buy a larger mirror to cover the area
  • The tile itself, it’s disgusting
  • The fact that I totally didn’t even close my shower curtain all the way when I took these pictures
  • Anything else awful about my bathroom I’m forgetting to mention

Please and thank you.

And now, a whole mess of pictures:

One the left you can see the original old lady fixture, and on the right you can see the peanut butter jar, and in the mirror reflection you can see my gross yellow glowing vent.

Here she is at a level view. If we stick with this, we’d get a prettier looking bulb.

And from the side- you can see here I’ve got the type of fixtures that requires you tighten 3 screws to hold the cover in place, as opposed to one where you would thread it in (like tightening the cover of a jar).

One more that shows you the current one vs. this one

So here’s the deal, if you turn on that light it is like THE POWER OF THE SUN in there. So we’d have to go with a lower wattage if we stuck with this. And then we were thinking maybe we’d just paint the top half too… but I feel like it’s so close to the bulb that might be a bad idea? Thoughts on this?

Another concern: I immediately felt like this looked ridiculous because it sticks straight out from the wall, as opposed to if we had a fixture where it would sort of hang over (like the one in Emma’s post), but Matt seemed to really like it. What do you think?

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A preview of things to come

I’ve been seriously under the weather this week so I don’t have any new projects to share, but I thought I’d share a little inspiration with you.

As you may know I’m slowly working to link my sun room in with the rest of our house. Currently it’s green, and actually it’s a really nice shade of green that I like a lot. However, there is literally nothing else green in our entire house. So it’s gotta goooo. Luckily, I just won a $50 gift certificate to Home Depot from Better After so I can get painting sooner then expected!

As you may also know if you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, I recently bought myself a little something something. And it’s going to make it a heck of a lot easier to complete what I’ve got in mind.

Here’s what I found via Pinterest and Google (click on each picture to go to the source):

 

 

 

STRIPES!!!

The Office

I don’t post about the office too often because it’s Matt’s space, and I try really hard to respect that and not decorate in there. It’s difficult. Super difficult. None the less he has let me do a few things:

  • Pick the paint color (he’s color blind, so that’s always a given)
  • Add a bulletin board and some wall storage
  • Rearrange the furniture (at least 3 times…)

I have a really hard time getting this room to look good in photographs, even in the after pictures it still looks super cluttered. But in perspective, this room was actually the master bedroom for the previous owners because it is the largest. Also, I don’t show the whole room in the pictures because the back wall is where the litter boxes are so you know, you don’t really need to see that.

Anywho, after I went a bit hog wild on chair hoarding I reorganized this room to accomodate the slipper chair that was originally meant for the sunroom.

Here’s how it was before:

Super cluttered everywhere.

 

& lopsided.

 

I got rid of that black bookcase because it was old and cheap and falling apart anyway. Then I moved the wooden bookcase (on the right side of the first picture) to the other side of the room, which made room for the slipper chair. Then this past weekend I picked up an end table at the Habitat Restore for $12 (which I may or may not redo, we’re feeling it out first). And voila…. it’s not my dream room, but Matt sure likes it:

The desk is still far too unorganized for my liking- but it’s not my liking that matters here. I think this new set up gives the room a little more space to breathe.

 

This new little corner gives me somewhere to sit with my laptop while Matt’s on his desktop, and it softens the room up a bit as well. Those shelves on the wall are from a consignment shop, maybe $14 total, and spray painted with leftover spray I had in the basement. Unfortunately the cat post needs to be there or that chair will be destroyed, so I at least got a sisal one instead of a carpet wrapped one. 

So basically, this room has taught me a few things:

  • Not every room in my house can look picturesque, because not every room in this house is mine.
  • I love all 4 of our pets and I need to stop trying to hide their furniture- we have 3 scratching posts, 3 litter boxes, 4 bowls of water, and bones up the wazoo. And that’s just what’s happening.
  • Matt won’t let me style his shelves no matter how much I beg.

 

So there you go- what do you think of the end table? Would you redo it? Does this room look at least a little better now?

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And don’t forget, you’ve got all week to link up with the DIY Action Squad! Whether your project is from the Young House Love book or just inspired by the blog, link away! :) We can’t wait to see what you’ve done!

 

 

DIY Action Squad LINK PART-AY!

What comes before part b? PART-A!

We are not affiliated with Young House Love, but we did get their seal of approval for our little idea.

Halfway through November Kenz, Tracie, Emma, and I challenged ourselves and you to grab the Young House Love book and create something awesome. Below is the step by step for the project I chose- don’t forget to link up your own at the bottom. Then, hop on over to each of the other DIY Action Squad’s blogs and link up there too!

I went with idea #214- Paint Almost Any Piece of Furniture. If you’re a regular around here you know furniture painting is my thing (my accent table, bureau, and chair are just a few of my favs).  So when I saw these two beauties for *free* on the side of the road I knew I had to make them mine:

A nearby high school was getting rid of a lot of old furniture, including these two captain’s chairs. They had pen and marker stains, chips, dents, and bruises… swoon.

I hand painted 2 coats of primer on each chair (and they probably could have used a 3rd too) with leftover primer from when we first moved in.

Once the primer was dry I sprayed them with Rustoleum spray paint in pure white with a satin finish- I had it leftover from when I redid another chair.

I gave the spray paint two-three days to cure up before taping off the rungs because I was nervous it would peel. Taping off the rungs was by far the most time consuming part of this project- about 45 minutes per chair. Once it was taped I added two coats of Behr Wheat Bread paint (which is the same color as my living room, so that was leftover as well). I added it with a regular paint brush, then once I removed the tape I went in with an art brush for touch ups.

After painting the rungs I gave it another 2 days to cure up before adding two coats of polycrylic to each chair (which was the only things I purchased for this project). Then I let THAT cure up for another few days before using the chairs. I was super nervous about knicks and scratches and peels which is why I overdid it on the drying time for each step.

What a difference a few coats of paint and some patience makes!

Ta da!

And just one more snap of the chairs in the room:

So there you go- an under $20 makeover that makes a huge impact! I encourage you when you’re painting to not just go with the obvious, add a little tweak to it (in my case, different colored rungs). I also encourage you to embrace the funk of DIY work- the chairs still have dents and bruises but that’s what gives them character and personality. I didn’t sand them perfectly smooth or stress that one has a front bar and the other doesn’t…I let them be in fit in with everything else in my home that’s been upcycled.

AND NOW THE PART YOU’VE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR- add your links below (and add them to KenzTracie, and Emma‘s pages too)! I can’t wait to see what you’ve done (don’t forget- if you’re viewing this post in a reader you’ll have to click over).

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I’ve linked this post up with the THRIFT IT party & Young House Love!

High 5 for Friday

Happy Friday everyone! I hope you have the day off of work and that you get to enjoy a lovely 4 day weekend. My Black Friday plans include hitting up the local Habitat for Humanity Restore to support some local business- I try not to shop at chains today. That’s just my personal thing though- so if you did I hope you’re home and snuggled up and comfy by now! I’m resting my fingers up for Cyber Monday instead… which is not nearly as sexy as it sounds. Unless online sales and free shipping are what get you going. :)

Here’s my top 5 for the week, linked up with From My Grey Desk:

1. My DIY Action Squad project is done!! How’s yours coming along? I hope you link up with us all on Monday, we’d love to see what projects you’ve been doing. Read more about our challenge here!

2. I hosted Thanksgiving yesterday and it went very well- it was so nice to have my family at my house enjoying each other, all my hand me down kitchenware, and delicious food.

Basically the only thing we are all interested in when we get together now is this little man, my nephew and godson. What did we DO before he arrived?

3. I got assigned a night class at the community college I work at! I’ve been trying for three semester to get one (extra $$, good resume builder) and I CAN’T WAIT for it to start! I really do love where I work so the more I can do with them the better.

4. Since we didn’t get to see Matt’s family on Thanksgiving we’re headed to there house for the day tomorrow. We haven’t seen them since early September so I’m excited to pack up some leftovers and hit the road.

5. On another blog related note, I’m one Facebook like away from 50! Won’t you hop over and be number 50 (or 51, 52, 53…)?

WHAT ARE YOUR TOP 5?

Thanksgiving Special

Happy Thanksgiving ya’all. Hope you’re stuffed full of deliciousness today :).

Instead of sharing with you all the things I’m thankful for, I thought I’d share a little video created circa 2006. Did you know I was a film major in college? Oh boy, was I. And so were all my friends. As part of that my friends entered a film festival where they drew a genre, character, and 2 lines of dialog out of a hat and then had like 5 days to write, cast, shoot, and edit the whole thing.

If you want to look for me, I played a pilgrim- there’s only one other girl in the whole thing and she plays a native american. My fiance (who was just a good friend at the time) is the bare chested native american chief. Be still my heart.

And so I present to you 6 minutes of pure Hollywood gold.

THANKSGIVING: A Lesson In History

Pinterest Food Challenge: Pumpkin Cupcakes AND Sour Cream Parmesan Chicken

I’ve got a two-fer for you guys this month, dinner and dessert! ow ow. And expect one more next week, and probably several in December… basically, ’tis the season to eat your face off. For today, I’ve got 5 ingredient pumpkin cupcakes (for a co-workers’ birthday) and then I made Sour Cream Parmesan Chicken for dinnah. And they are both delicious!

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!

Let’s start with dessert because we all know it’s the best part of every meal. I found this recipe for easy pumpkin cupcakes and all I did was swap out the frosting type. In case that’s ever a dead link, here’s the deal…

You will need:

  • 1 package of white cake mix (16.5 oz)
  • 1 (15oz) can of pumpkin
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin spice
  • frosting of your choice (I used whipped cream in a can to give it a pumpkin pie vibe)

Note: If your cake mix is less then 16.5 ounces, use a little less water.

Mix everything but your frosting in a bowl (no eggs or oil needed!!), fill cupcake cups 2/3 full, and bake at 350* for about 20 minutes. I did not realize that whipped cream in a can shrinks up if you don’t eat it within like 10 minutes, so if that’s the route you go just spray it on before serving.

Matt thought they needed to be a little sweeter, but I liked them as is. Hopefully everyone will eat them up at work today! I always get so nervous bringing food that’s not something I regularly make… kind of like as a kid on Halloween you’re worried you’ll be the only one who wears a costume to school.

Next up: Chicken!

A few months ago I re-pinned a recipe for delicious chicken, but the link was dead. Here’s a screen shot of the pin, which luckily had the recipe right on the label:

I followed that recipe almost exactly and it came out great, I sprayed some cooking spray on the bottom of the pan first and used seafood bread crumbs instead of Italian because I was all out of Italian. I ended up cooking it for about 30-35 minutes but that may just be because I’m deathly afraid of giving myself salmonella poisoning…

Also, I don’t know if you noticed but I made a handy dandy page up top to gather all the Pinterest Food Challenge posts together. Check it out and comment with links to your own delicious recipes!

Want to see what else I’m up to on Pinterest? All my boards are right here.

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Barstool Update

Back in May I painted and reupholstered my kitchen barstools, which you can read more about here. Basically, I traded a kitchen table I didn’t need for two barstools then painted them white and reupholstered them to match my DIY wall art. At the time I didn’t realize how much use they’d get, so I didn’t seal then. Bad move, we use these suckers daily.

While I was working on my DIY Action Squad project, I also took the time to spray paint the stools and get some polycrylic slapped on there. They were already white, but they were stained and nicked so just two light coats of Rustoleum white spray in a satin finish was all they needed (no primer):

To protect the reupholstering I just wrapped a plastic bag around the top and tapped it to the underneath while I sprayed.

 

I first went to Home Depot for polcrylic, but they only had polyurethane (which would have dried with a yellow tint and isn’t a good idea for paint anyway- it’s more for protecting wood stain). So then I went to Lowe’s and got this for $18:

So far I’ve used it for 4 projects and it’s not even half empty, so it was definitely money well spent.

I put on 2 coats of polycrylic and let it cure in the basement for a day and a half. Now they’re back in their regular spot in the kitchen, ready to rock and roll:

Oh la la

 

Have you ever had to go back and fix a project once it was done? Any polycrylic tips or tricks you’d care to share?

Oh, and don’t forget to like Sandpaper and Glue on Facebook- there’s all sorts of extras posted there daily.

Thanksgiving Recipes

Sure, there’s turkey at Thanksgiving, but we’re Italian up in here so there’s got to be a lot more than that too. This is the third year in a row I’ve hosted Thanksgiving, and it’ll be the third year in a row I’m making the 3 recipes you see below. Enjoy!!

Pumpkin Spice Carrots

  • baby carrots
  • pumpkin spice (or nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves)
  • sugar
  • apple juice

Pour carrots in a sauce pot on the stove, add enough apple just to cover the pottom of the pot (about half cup for a medium bag of carrots), add a teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice, then turn up the heat. As the juice begins to boil, sprinkle a bit of sugar on top. After the water is boiled lower the heat and simmer for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

 

Cheesy Potatoes

  • 32 oz. bag of frozen hash browns (diced or cubed, not shredded)
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 pint sour cream
  • 8 oz. grated cheddar cheese
  • two 3/4 sticks of margine
  • 2-3 cups crushed corn flakes

Spread the hash browns in a 9×13 dish. Mix one of your 3/4 sticks of margarine with cheese, soup, and sour cream then spread on top of the hash browns. Melt the other 3/4 stick of margarine and add it to the crushed corn flakes then spread that on top as well. Bake at 325* for 1 hour and 15 minutes.

 

No Boil Lasagna

  • 1 (9 ounce) box of Barilla no-boil lasagna noodles
  • 3 eggs
  • 32 ounces ricotta (I use low fat or skim)
  • 4-5 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 pound ground beef (or 1 bound sausage) browned
  • 2.5 jars red gravy (or sauce, for you non-Italians)
  • parsley

Preheat oven to 375*. Combine beaten eggs, ricotta cheese, parmesan and two cups of mozzarella. Separately, in a 13×9 pan spread 1 cup of sauce on the bottom. Layer 4 uncooked lasagna noodles (they will overlap), then 1/3 part of the mixture, half the browned meat, 1 cup mozzarella, and 1.5 cups spaghetti sauce. Repeat for 2 more layers (without the 1 cup mozzarella). For top layer, 4 uncooked lasagna noodles, then remainder of mixture, then 1 cup mozzarella. Bake covered with foil for 50-60 minutes, uncover for another 10 minutes, then ;et stand 15 minutes before serving

**This is the same recipe that’s printed on the Barilla box, except with one extra egg and double the ricotta.

 

And for the first time this year, I’ll also be trying this Better Than Pumpkin Pie Cake. mmmm.

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Also, don’t forget on Monday the 26th our Young House Love book link party starts up! Read more about it here!! :)

 

High 5 for Friday

Let’s just dive right in, because this week was pretty bomb dig (up until about 6:00pm last night…):

1. I joined forces with my blog friends to create the DIY Action Squad, and together we are challenging ourselves and our readers to create- just grab a copy of the Young House Love book and get to work! Read more here.

2. This week I only worked a glorious 3.5 days due to Veteran’s day and work being done at my house… which leads right into

3. We have finished the conversion from oil to gas heat! Cya never oil, you expensive son of a bitch. The conversion cost us $1200 (to have our chimney swept, lined, and repaired) and our utilities company covered the other $2000+ as part of an energy efficiency initiative. HOWEVER at 6pm last night our heat was shut off because the terrible, awful utilities company, Unitil, lost our paperwork and claimed I wasn’t renting a burner converter from them. Even though it was in my basement. With a property of Unitil sticker on it. Soooooo right now I’m sitting at my house waiting for someone to come turn it back on. I can’t even put into words the anger this has given me. I have been seething. This is not the first time Unitil has screwed me over.

4. Before all the nonsense went down, to celebrate our conversion from oil to gas, and to get out of the house while it warmed up (or so we thought) Matt & I went out to a new frozen yogurt place. It was ah-maz-ing. You make your own and pay by weight. I had cheesecake frozen yogurt with butterfingers, reeses, and peanut butter syrup. Om nom nom.

5. I have literally no obligations this weekend, and Matt is working, so I get to DIY and watch Netflix in my sweats all weekend long. Holler.