Thursday, January 30, 2014

Tick Tock

Some of you noticed our new alarm clock in that last post. My kids are still pretty young, but I think they are old enough to get some responsibilities. Waking yourself in the morning is an easy but important skill. My oldest and I did some window shopping and ran across this cute sphere. In addition to being an alarm clock it also has a white noise feature which is great since our old machine stopped working.

From my daughters' view the best thing about it is how it lights up.

That's right a rainbow of colors that changes about every 10 seconds while it is on. It's actually very soothing and not at all disco like. It goes well with the girls initial rainbow request, and for the most part sits there in a neutral white state.

I also got around to hanging sweater hooks. They are just some curtain tie-backs left by a previous owner. They got a few light coats of pink spray paint, and mounted to the wall with wall anchors. Easy, Peasy, Lemon Squezey.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Dancing on the Ceiling

Grandma picked up some cute hanging shapes at Hobby Lobby. The strings they came with had stark white plastic rings on the end for hanging.

Similar to these

I didn't like the way they contrasted with the ceiling. I cut them off, then decided that they still hung too close to the ceiling. New hanging "wire" made from fishing line was a quick and easy solution.

Simple tacks held the strings in place without putting giant holes in my freshly patched and painted ceiling.

We picked up the lamp during a family trip to Gatlinburg, TN. It was a steal at just $19.88, and made it home 16 hours in the car safe!

The small music boxes were a Black Friday Doorbuster that found their way into the girls Christmas stockings.

We aren't quite finished yet, but it was come a long way!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

You've Got Mail

During a trip to the Children's Museum a long time ago I noticed how much the kids enjoyed delivering mail in the small town. I have since been on the look out for a great deal on mailboxes. This past week I finally found 4 mailboxes at just $.50 each!

I used a Sharpie to write addresses on the side and got busy installing them around the play area.

Used a (free after rebate) level to keep them straight.

Used a drill bit to make holes in the 2x4's that I mounted them in.

Then to make holes in the mailbox.

I made 1 hole attached it to the 2x4, then drilled the second hole to ensure that I didn't move it in between.
Since I couldn't fit a drill inside the mailbox and I didn't want a sharp point from a screw on the inside, I chose to use 1 3/4 inch machine screws and nuts to bolt them in place. (2x4's aren't actually 2 inches thick)

Used blank note cards and stickers to make mail. The kids have already been making their own mail, so that should be fun to see evolve as time goes on.

I even found some small boxes to wrap and address. I covered it all in clear packaging tape to help them live a bit longer. I also made sure the kids knew the boxes where empty.

Now the kids can deliver and receive mail by matching the letters and numbers.


Friday, January 17, 2014

Sticky Situation

No link to the decal in the back, they never really stuck, and
it was way smaller than depicted in the Amazon Listing
As I completed different rooms around the house. The girls became dissatisfied with the state of their own room. Considering I had originally gone really neutral when I was first pregnant, Me Vet and I agreed it was time to go girly.

The girls and I came up with a plan and got started. I found a awesome deal on Amazon for decals. They shipped from overseas so it took several weeks to get them. For me the wait was worth the savings. They arrived rolled tightly so I laid them flat and weighted them down for a few weeks while I prepped the room for them.

Once it was all ready I showed the girls and the 3 of us had fun hanging them. We modified them to fit around the window, and we didn't use the words. That's what I like about decals though, they are just stickers and you can do what you want with them.

The girls loved the final way it looked. They have even stopped asking about the rainbow. They just wanted color and girly and didn't know how to articulate that better than "rainbow".

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Free Paint Showdown

For Christmas my girls asked for their room to be painted as a giant rainbow. Uhh....

Here is an older Before photo
Let's just do this in stages and see how it ends up I recommend, and they miraculously agree. Great now I need a plan that will satisfy their need for bold crazy colors and my desire to not have to completely redo everything when My Vet decides it's time to pack up and get a different house. (This is the first home we've been in more than 4 years, so I have to admit I always have that possibility in the back of my mind, even though there are Zero, Zip, Nada, Nope, thoughts are plans in that direction.)

After blankly gazing at the room for several weeks and lots of thinking, I formed a basic plan.

Remove popcorn ceiling
Paint walls white
Paint ceiling blue
Hang wall decals
Row of hooks for jewelry
Single hook for each girls sweater
Alarm clock to start them thinking about waking up on their own
New lamp or something for the night stand
A colorful rug? (Replacing the carpet isn't in the budget)
Improve the window treatments (I'm thinking faux wood blinds)
Rainbow painted picture frames
Small ledge for favorite things

I started by ordering the decals. I found some nice big ones on Amazon that I ordered and then hid from the girls. I knew that as soon as they saw them, they would want need to hang them. It also gave me the push to get the walls prepped and painted.

Removing the popcorn was as messy as before. As you can tell by the title, I got some free paint to work with on this project. (The methods I used to acquire free paint could have been done by any of you, it was not compensation for my mention or review. The opinions are mine and only represent my own personal experience with the products.) As a pretty serious couponer, I was able to obtain several free gallons of Flat White Interior Latex Paint using Menard's Rebate Program for a previous project. Since I had plenty left I decided to use it again.

The first project I wasn't impressed with the coverage, but, I was covering serious primer over really porous material. So I didn't notice really. This time I was covering a light beige/cream and was really disappointed that it took 4 coats. It was really thin and dripped all over the place. I spent almost as much time wiping up drips as I did painting. The first few coats looked like I was doing a white wash effect. In my opinion this paint is not worth the price. (Yep it was free, but time has value too.) If you don't believe me and want to try it for yourself, you are welcome to have my left overs. (4+ gallons left, like I said free so I REALLY stocked up.)


Next up is Ace Hardware exclusive Clark+Kensington Paint+Primer in One. I've used this in the living room, bathroom, and in the closet/quiet area in the girls room. It is hands down my favorite paint. One coat coverage, easy to use, cleanup, and dries nice. They give away free quarts every once and a while. Seriously I love this paint. (I am not compensated for my infatuation. I do take advantage of any free paint they advertise though.)

The final free test paint comes from Marv's Tru Value Hardware. While I was in the middle of removing the popcorn ceiling I attended a ladies night at Marv's and won a door prize. Free paint (I went with Tru Value Color Collection "Spooning")! I've had great results with the local guys, so I admit my expectations were high. I chose a shade of deep turquoise/blue to simulate the sky. The ceilings are really low, so I'm hoping that opens it up. The paint was a definitely thicker than the white, but I was mildly bummed it took 2 coats. The color I chose required the Deep Tint Base, which is probably why it took 2 instead of 1. But, I've gotten spoiled now and have unrealistically high coverage expectations. 

Now that the paint is on I get to show the girls the decals!

I was so excited I forgot a between paint/decal photo.