Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Reviving a favorite!

I am alway drawn to signage. I don't know what the deal is, but I just love it! Do you ever watch "American Pickers?" Each and every time they come across a vintage sign, I positively drool. Someday, I would love to have a great room wall covered in old signs.

Someday I would love to have the piles of money that are necessary to purchase a wall-full of old signs. ;P

I bought this particular sign probably seven or eight years ago at a barn sale for $1. At my last house, it sat outside on my back patio, right across the top of my potting bench. It sat there for 3 years, rain or shine, snow-covered and heat-scorched. I love what it did to the wood, but the lettering pretty much peeled right off.

I decided to hang it inside here at the new house, above the kitchen cabinets. Unfortunately, it was almost impossible to read anymore! So I repainted the lettering...hopefully it doesn't detract from the authenticity of the sign!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Giving my Little Darlin' a big girl room!

In our last house, our daughter's room was literally 8 X 9. And that included the closet, which was jutted out into the room, as opposed to being set in the wall. She had no space, bless her heart! Her room was painted yellow, with bamboo flooring that was kind of yellow-ish in hue, and decorated with gerbera daisies (LOVE a gerbera daisy...anytime, anyplace).

But going to a new place means a fresh start. I decided on a color scheme of baby blue with hot pink and yellow accents. Apparently this offended some people...I was asked why I didn't let her pick out her own colors for her room. One person even went so far as to ask me if I believe I have better taste than her.

Ummmmmm......yes, I do. She's 3. The other day she put on pink flowered pants with a red shirt (part of me was proud because she chose to wear a St. Louis Cardinals shirt....but still, not with pink flowered pants).


First, I took a mirror that I bought at a yard sale for $1 (it had previously been gold, and I painted it white) and repainted it in Krylon's "Watermelon." Then I printed off a series of silhouettes from the Graphics Fairy's blog on scrapbook paper, and "matted" them on coordinating scrapbook paper. I took the white Ikea frames that had been in her room before and covered them in German glass glitter so they would sparkle.

Voila, new room!!!

(And by the way.....she loves it!!!!)

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Burritos from the "leftovers"

Once again, a large part of why I'm posting is so that I don't forget this recipe!
If I don't write things down, I will surely forget. I didn't used to be this way....I traded in my brain in exchange for some precious kiddos.

Shredded Beef Burritos

Leftover pot roast, marinated in fajita seasoning and shredded
Leftover white rice (from having Sweet and Sour Chicken)
Black Bean and Corn Salsa
Cheddar Jack cheese

Wrap in a tortilla and lightly brown all around.

The hubs drizzled queso over his....I put sour cream on mine. Ooooh, guacamole would've been sooooo good with this!

This was SO INCREDIBLY TASTY and made me feel pretty good as a domestic engineer....nothing went to waste this week!

Friday, December 17, 2010

A Rosemary Wreath and a Comfort Food Recipe

Yesterday, Centsational Girl posted instructions on how to make a Rosemary Wreath. I had decided to take it easy that day and not really work on very many projects so that I could ease my stress level. But then, she posted those instructions....and it turns out that I have a rosemary TREE growing in my front yard.....and one thing led to another, and......

It only took about 20 minutes. So that's ok, right?

I have been doing my best to try to keep some sense of normalcy for the kiddos thoughout this move. We took a week off of school so that we could get moved in, but then this past Monday, it was back to work again! We found a church that offers AWANA so that the two oldest could attend just like they normally would. We're trying to get in the swing of things.

But the truth of it is, we're strangers here. We don't know anybody, we (ok, so I'm only referring to myself here) don't know where anything is (and to be honest, people here are CRAZY DRIVERS...this is not an exaggeration...even they acknowledge that they are horrible!!!), and it's difficult to find a solid routine. I'm not sure exactly how we will fill our days once the job of unpacking and settling in is over.

So one of the things that I've tried to be consistent about is our mealtime. At home, I always cooked from scratch, and that means pretty much everything; last winter I learned how to make Amish White Bread, and we had it several times a week (the recipe is on Allrecipes if you're interested...it's not hard, I promise!). And the kiddos love these meatballs, so I'm giving you the recipe today. It's not anything terribly special, but it always goes over well in our house.

Mandy's Meatballs

1 lb. ground beef
1/2 cup (or whatever you think looks good) bread crumbs
1 egg
Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, and garlic to taste

I put all of these into my KitchenAid mixer and then just let it whirl for a while. I find this makes the meat (and so the meatballs) very tender. I think a "real" Italian meatball has a variety of meats, but I don't really have the money to do that, so I just fake the flavors as much as possible! ;) Then I use a Pampered Chef scooper and and scoop the meatballs into a cast-iron skillet; this makes all the meatballs the same size and I don't have to touch the raw meat with my hands. I let them brown a bit and then cover them with sauce to finish cooking.

Also, sometimes I use store-bought bread crumbs and sometimes I take my leftover Amish White bread, crumble it up, add some herbs to the crumbles, and toast them in the oven. (This is what I did last night.) I hate letting good food go to waste!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Remember These?

Ugh!!! I tried linking this post up to The Graphics Fairy's Brag Monday, and managed to erase it! How frustrating!

These are the printed pillows that I mentioned in an earlier post, no longer just casings but stuffed and pillow-y.

The pillow with the sheet musice cover is printed from The Graphics Fairy's blog. The one that says "Zeno Chewing Gum" is a pencil-rubbed imprint of my Grandpa's antique stick gum machine, and the last one is simply printed using font from Microsoft Word.

They are printed on canvas drop cloth from Lowe's (somewhere aroun $5 for a single drop cloth, which provided enough material for all three pillows.

So sorry for any inconvenience I may have caused in erasing this post!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Cheap Art

I have seen wall hangings like this before, and for some reason I am so drawn to them. They are simple and graphic and I guess I just like it!

I simply purchased chipboard letters from Hobby Lobby (I think they were a little over $1 apiece) and spray painted them black. I also colored the nails that I used to hang the letters black so that they don't shine.

The end of that counter is kind of awkward, so that vignette is not going to stay the way it is. I still haven't unpacked a lot of things, and so I'm looking for certain items as of yet...I have some white pitchers/containers that I think would look lovely there. We will have to see, I suppose!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Before and After....Estate Sale Mirror

I bought this mirror at my Grandfather's estate auction (yes, if we wanted anything, we had to purchase it), and even though I love the shape of it, the color left something to be desired, I thought. Keep in mind that it's not a valuable antique (it's made of plastic), but it is special because of its origin.

So I found this stuff at Hobby Lobby.

It's just a rub-on wax silverleaf. And it was super-cheap...$3.99 I think!

It really was easy to apply...at first I tried using a receiving blanket that I'd cut up into rags, then realized that it was easier to use my finger. About the time that my finger started to get raw from rubbing the silverleafing into all those tiny grooves, I realized that I could mix it with a little paint thinner and apply it with a sponge brush. Bonus!

I'm so, so, so pleased with the way it turned out! I know that my camera is poo and my camera skills are pretty much poo, too, so you can't see how the gold still kind of shines through the silver, which makes it look even more vintage.
Need another view of the before and after?

And after:

Saturday, December 11, 2010

On a mission

Today I am on the hunt for a vintage buffet to use as a media cabinet underneath our new tv.

Our brother-in-law hung the tv on the wall last night (and it is fancy-shmantzy!!!!) but now I need something to hide all the electronics and cords.

Ugh. I HATE seeing cords.

The challenge is that is has to be super-budget-friendly. Another challenge is that I don't have a lot of time to find one, since there is a satellite box on the floor and I have a small one who absolutely loves to push buttons. All buttons. Especially mine. ;P

He's a menace. I love him, but that's just the truth.

Wish me luck! I'm off!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Wait is Finally Over!!

(If I knew how to do a cartwheel, I would be doing one right now!)

A couple of days ago, we got a call at 10 am telling us that we would be closing on our house at noon. Thank goodness I'd already showered. (When you're a mom of little ones, a shower -- and especially a morning shower -- is a hot commodity.)

Two of my brothers loaded up a moving truck with all of our stuff and drove from the Midwest to the South to bring it to us. They stayed with us for a couple of days and (bless their hearts!)
helped me get the living room and kitchen painted. I can't tell you how much that meant to me!! Oooh, but I do not like painting. Many hands make light work, though...is it weird that most cliches are so so true?

I can't wait to start posting pictures for all of you!

Today, a million boxes are calling my name. (Why do we have so much stuff????)

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Waiting Game

This has become the story of my life.

When we realized that moving cross-country might be an option for us (because of my husband's job), we decided to put our house up on the market and just see if it would sell.

It did. It sold in less than 6 weeks. In this market.

We were shocked.

We immediately began house-searching, and it has been absolutely killer. We lost out on two houses, only to have the home that we are currently purchasing become available in the 11th hour. My husband went and looked at it and made an offer on it on the same day that it became available....without me seeing it, since I was 600 miles away. (Obviously, I trust him!)

That's when our life motto became "Hurry up and wait."

We were supposed to close on our home two weeks ago. Every day we wait for the news that we need to go sign paperwork and get the keys to our home. Every day passes without the call.

There are no words for how frustrating this has become. For the last two months, we have been living with family. It is aggravating to live out of Rubbermaid tubs (all of my children and myself are sharing a single tub in order to save space), because I thought we were going to be in our home much sooner, and I didn't want to bring too many things with us and junk up someone else's space.

It seems whiny and self-serving to complain about these things when, even under these circumstances, we are better off than 98% of the rest of the world.

And yet, at the same time, we have to believe that things are going to come together at some point.

I am trying to remember to give thanks in all things.