What I’ve accomplished on my 2013 list … (since Feb.)

OK, well haven’t I been a slacker. I haven’t done an update on the list since. … well, the only post I did was what I did in January. So let’s get to updating the list from everything since January. Some have been going great, others, well, there’s always next year, right?

If you missed it, here is the original list.

Update from February to July of …



10. Visit my friends who moved away. 

• Went to Augusta (in January)
• Went to Baton Rouge (in February… Mardi Gras!)


11. Take a trip with the girls.
Can you say Cancun?

25. Go swimming.
Two birds with one Cancun stone.

27. Visit Minnesota.
Completed last week!

32. Sell old couches.

38. Try Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Oh, I tried it. I don’t know if I just missed the window on when I would like it or something. I didn’t even finish the first episode.

40. Get a passport.
Got this done in February right before the Mexico trip.

41. Wash my car.
By hand … BOOM!


43. Go to Mardi Gras in New Orleans.



13. Blog at least once a month. (um, yeah, sorry about that)


4. Read 50 books.

At this point in time, I stand at 44 books, so I think this one will happen. The last time I was this close to my book goal though, I moved it up 10 books, and then didn’t make it. So this year, I’m just going to relish the extra ones and not try to over extend myself.

I was going to type them all out, and then decided, wouldn’t you rather see the covers (from latest to earliest)? Yes, yes?


Aviary Photo_130211488329810369Aviary Photo_130211488960245853

9. Play through our board game collection. Every game at least once.
We’ve been kind of slacking on this one. We did pretty well in the spring, but the summer is a different story. Plus, I bought a couple more games (I have a disease) …

26. Go Frisbee golfing at least once a month.
This one is still going strong.

35. Go fishing at least four times.
I’ve only been twice so far. Once in Minnesota and once in Alabama.

44. (The Secret One) which is actually “Get good grades.”
So far so good on this one. All A’s so far.

And there you have it. A super-belated post about the list. And what did I learn today? That I still have a lot to do …


August 16, 2013 at 1:01 pm 3 comments

Making a wine-cork trivet

2013-04-14 13.33.25

I’ve always noticed trivet kits on Amazon and thought, “How adorable!” But the prices are a little scary, especially when you really only get a wooden box. So when I saw that there was a sale on one, I jumped on it.


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Using a kit is cheating, but I’m OK with that. The one I used it pictured above. Yes, if I was more adventurous, I would be all over that, but I don’t even have a saw to cut wood. So, there you go.

First step: If you are thinking about making a trivet, collect wine corks. If you have WAY MORE than you think you need, keep going. You’ll probably need more than that. Thankfully, my friends and I were at a restaurant that sells a lot of wine and my friend Maya asked them if we could have some of the corks. They totally came through and gave me an entire take-out box full. If it weren’t for them, I would probably still be trying to collect enough.


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Second step: PLAN. Plan, plan, and then plan some more. Lay everything out and figure out what you are going to do. I could not get the design that was featured on the box to work for me at all, so just keep trying until you find something you like.


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Third step: Cut the corks, as needed, to fill gaps. You’ll need ends, and slices of some for the vertical corks (if you decide to do a design similar to mine). This step was messier than expected.


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Fourth step: Pull the corks back out from the frame. Start gluing it row by row. Some people use Elmer’s glue, and a little packet was included (a WAY TOO small packet), but I thought it would be too messy and you’d have to wait until it dried. I’m not very patient, so I used super glue. It worked great. And after a couple months, it’s still holding strong.

Fifth step: Let it set, and you are done! Go cook something hot and try it out!

August 2, 2013 at 10:46 am 1 comment

How to make adorable hanging kitchen towels

These are two finished towels from my first batch.

These are two finished towels from my first batch.

This has been a post long time in the making. 2 years ago, I came upon this post on Pinterest. (Here is the pdf of the directions and pattern.) I thought, “Oh, what a great idea.” And so I proceeded to make them for Christmas presents in 2011. And everyone rejoiced. My mom, proceeded to tell me that she needed more of them AND wouldn’t it be a great idea to do some for the different holidays? Well, yes, yes it would. But, I had just got done thinking to myself that I wasn’t going to make anymore of them (I think I just dreamed a little too big in my first batch). But, you know, she is my mother. So, for Christmas 2012, I decided that I was going to make another batch of them. This time I scaled back on how many people received them, BUT each person that did get them got a big selection of holiday ones, so I think it basically ended up being the same.

Here is my second batch towels.

Here is my second batch towels.

Things I learned while making the towels:
Go big on the buttons. I ended up picking out specialty buttons for the second batch and they basically ended up stealing the show. Splurge a little on the buttons and you won’t regret it.
• Same thing goes for towels.
If you use interfacing, thicker the better. I didn’t use the flannel as the pattern suggested, I actually used interfacing (mostly because I already had some that I could use). In my first batch, I just use the normal kind that I had. After a couple washings, it starts to look kind of saggy. So, as my grandma suggested, on the second batch, I used a thick interfacing. It worked SO MUCH BETTER. Listen to your grandma.
• Don’t skip the ironing. I hate ironing. I actually only have an iron in the house for crafts, and I still don’t want to use it. With this craft though, don’t skip it. It makes your life 100 percent easier.
Assembly line. I found the easiest way was to do each step for all the towels at once. Already have the iron out? Go ahead and iron on all the interfacing. Have out your button foot? Go ahead and make all the button holes.

And now, let’s get to actually making the towels … (note: all of these steps are from the first batch)

Washed Fabric

1. After you have gathered all of the fabric, thread, towels, etc. Wash everything.

2. Cut out the pattern pieces and put them to together (tape, glue, etc.)


3. Cut out the fabric. You will need two matching pieces per towel.


4. If using interfacing, go ahead and iron it on. Be sure to get into the top, pointed area. If using flannel, go ahead and cut out that as well.


4. Pin the pieces together with one side of fabric (right-side up) and the other fabric (right-side down).


5. Stitch around starting at the bottom (on either side), all the way up and back down to the other side. Leave the bottom open.


6. Turn it right-side out and then iron.


7. Sew up the sides again. So you have something else that looks like above.


8. Cut towel in half. (You only need a half for each one.) Then gather the raw edge of the dishtowel up so that it will fit in your opening nicely. Do this step by using needle and thread to gather.


9. Turn in a hem on the bottom. Insert the top of the towel (raw, gathered edge) into the open side of the handle — make sure it’s at least an inch. And then pin in place.


10. Sew at least two rows of stitches to hold in place.


11. Grab your button. Use it to mark on the handle that folds down where you would like your buttonhole to be. (I just placed the button down and marked a little above and a little below the actual button.) Here you can use your buttonhole foot or whatever fancy things you do to make holes. My machine decided to break and not to the button function anymore (about half way through the first batch). It would only go up one side but not the other (quite the pain)!


12. Fold down the top part of the handle and figure out where you would like the button to be. Mark it on the wide base. Sew on button.


13. And you are done!

Here are some highlights of the towels that I made:

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2012-12-12 03.48.05
2012-12-12 03.57.42
2012-12-12 03.51.28

2012-12-12 03.48.38

2012-12-12 03.50.15

2012-12-12 04.00.29

July 26, 2013 at 10:35 am 2 comments

Some nightstand window shopping

I am in the market for some new nightstands for our master bedroom. Right now, we are using my husband’s previous end tables for nightstands. Mine is OK, but his is smaller and he knocks stuff off stuff falls off all the time. It’s so bad it’s a running joke at this point. So I might not always be actively looking, but it’s in the back of my mind.

One thing I can’t wrap my head around, when dealing with nightstands, is how expensive they are. You want $300 for that, really?? I could get a whole dresser for that. It’s just like when the shorter bookcase is like $5 cheaper than the bigger one. It pains my soul. And the company knows it has you between a rock and a hard place because when you need a certain size, bigger isn’t always better.

So I was at Hobby Lobby picking up supplies for another crafty project I’m working and I noticed when I was on my way to the checkout (I could wander around in there for hours looking at everything) a table that might work for a nightstand. So here are some of Hobby Lobby’s offerings that caught my eye. Ultimately, some of them turned out to be wrong after I looked more closely, some were vetoed by the husband and, in the case of one of them, deemed to be better fit for a kids’ room. So, without further ado, some nightstand window shopping …

Plate Nightstand

Super cute. There is actually an American flag painted on the top of this one. FAIL.

Black wood nightstand

Husband said, “No.” So, that’s that.

Pipe Nightstand

This was actually one of my favorites. Then I realized that it would look super cute in a kids room … yep. Not really what we are going for.

All the drawers nightstand

This was the husband’s favorite at first. I really liked it but the issue I had was I’m going to lose everything in all those little drawers. Plus, they were a little hard to pull out.

Basic colors nightstand

The colors of this one were MUCH better in person. While cute, didn’t really make me want to pull out my wallet.

And …. right now the leader of the pack…

123 Nightstand

This is the winner right now. The industrial look meets the wood look. I’m going back to measure this one.

I would like to get some nightstands that will go with a wood headboard. (I LOVE the reclaimed wood ones floating around everywhere.) So, even though I don’t have one now, (Master bed frame is actually black metal) I want something that will work with both.

I am going to go back and take a measuring tape with me. I’ll keep you posted if any big purchases are made!

April 2, 2013 at 2:21 pm 2 comments

What I accomplished in January

A January update to the …

4. Read 50 books.
In January:

  1. “Reached (Matched #3)” by Ally Condie
  2. “The Sword-Edged Blond (Eddie LaCrosse #1) by Alex Bledsoe
  3. “Where Things Come Back” by John Corey Whaley
  4. “Anna and the French” by Stephanie Perkins

9. Play through our board game collection. Every game at least once. (At this writing, collection totals 285 (without expansions).)
Played in January:
• The Village
• Carcassonne the City
• Magic: The Gathering

10. Visit my friends who moved away.
• Went to Augusta

13. Blog at least once a month.
• Kind of meta, but blogged the list itself on Jan. 25.

26. Go Frisbee golfing at least once a month.

  1. Went on Jan. 27

33. Get drunk.
• Apparently I wanted to get this one out of the way or something. I finished this one on Jan. 5. Of note: I had the worst hangover of my entire life on Jan. 6. I still haven’t been able to touch any wine.

I hope to get another post up before the end of the month, so check back next week!

February 21, 2013 at 2:18 pm 3 comments

My super ambitious (well, not that ambitious) list for 2013

Hello, all! I’ve missed you guys! When WordPress sent out their year-in-review email about this blog, it was a rude awakening. I know I don’t post that often, but it had the audacity to tell me that I only posted 3 times in 2012. How pathetic! This year, I am vowing to do better. So far I’m not off to a good start since my first post is going up on Jan. 25, but we all have to start somewhere, right? So, here I go…

Another blog I read, Pinstrosity, mentioned earlier this month about hating New Year resolutions (which I tend to agree with). Instead, she made a list of 101 things she wanted to do/accomplish in the new year. The list had to be specific, no “lose weight” or “be nicer,” it had to be measurable things. I know you can tell where I am going with this so I’ll just get to it …


50 (I’m not ambitious enough for 101) things I want to accomplish in 2013
(This list is in no particular order)

1. Take my husband to the High museum.
2. Have another game auction/sell unwanted games/cull collection.
3. See an opera.
4. Read 50 books (This is pretty standard. I’ve read a little over 50 the past couple years … ever since Project 15K.)
5. Go camping at least five times.
6. Get a massage.
7. Finish the Georgia State Park Geo-Challenge PassPort.
8. Finish portal cross stitch.
9. Play through our board game collection. Every game at least once.
10. Visit my friend who moved away.
11. Take a trip with the girls.
12. Watch all the movies and TV we own but have never seen.
13. Blog at least once a month.
14. Make a skirt.
15. Finish Spin’s secret present.
16. Put up a bathroom shelf that I haven’t finished because I don’t want to measure.
17. Take down ugly bathroom wallpaper.
18. Get chimney cleaned.
19. Get windows replaced, at least get quote to have them done.
20. Plant something or build a planter around the mailbox.
21. Get new fake flowers for outside hanging planters.
22. Get bench or rocking chairs for front porch.
23. Paint and finish frame for new prints.
24. Match all socks and toss ones without pairs.
25. Go swimming.
26. Go Frisbee golfing at least once a month.
27. Visit Minnesota.
28. Paint something.
29. Finish drawing for a friend.
30. Get a tattoo.
31. Clean garage.
32. Sell old couches.
33. Get drunk.
34. Try to keep bathroom clean.
35. Go fishing at least four times.
36. Write a short story.
37. Read three books that my husband wants me to read.
38. Try Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
39. Visit an East Coast beach not in Florida or Georgia.
40. Get a passport.
41. Wash my car.
42. Try to get the ivy in the backyard under control.
43. Go to Mardi Gras in New Orleans.
44. (Secret)
45. Make two new friends.
46. Reseal back deck.
47. Put on all stickers for car that I’ve amassed.
48. Go to the theater with the recliner chairs.
49. Add all movie tickets to ongoing poster.
50. Put/move all event tickets to new ticket book.

January 25, 2013 at 2:10 pm 3 comments

Taking art into my own hands

About a year ago, I redid my guest bathroom. I found the cutest shower curtain at Target with trees and woodland creatures. Adorable! It’s done in super cute ’60s colors.

So I paint the bathroom a dark yellow and buy a new rug, etc. I’m really excited for the change. (The last stuff in the bathroom had traveled with me from my parent’s house and I had been using it since middle school. It was in a stars-sun-moon theme.) Then I run into a snag. I can’t find any art to go with it. Any woodland creatures I find come in super bright pastels or dark den colors. By the way, do you know how hard it is to find nice looking squirrel art? No? Well, take my word for it.

Finally after about 6 months, I found these two owl pieces at Target. (They are about 8×8 squares.)

Perfect … for one wall. BUT, even with those, I still had a major gap above the toilet. Previously, a nice big wire stars and moon had hung there. So every time I went in there it was a huge void of nothingness. Plus, you can see it when you walk up the stairs. Plus, it helps draw attention away from Mr. Toilet. Triple whammy.

I was at Pier One (which I didn’t realize still existed nor was I really interested in it as a teenager) and saw some very cool owl art that I just had to have. From memory, I thought most of the colors were right …

Look at how majestic and adorable he is! The flowers are a prefect color, but you may have noticed the completely red background Mr. Owl is chilling on. Yeah, there is absolutely no red any way in that room. Not that I need everything to be matchy matchy, but it was kind of clashing with everything else. I thought it would be OK. I even left him in there for about 4 months now to see if it would grow on me. The answer? No, no it did not. I have been looking and still haven’t found anything. I did find someone on Etsy that had made art that goes with the exact curtain, but it was more for kids and they wanted way too much money for some easy Photoshoping.

On Sunday, I was cleaning out the guest room closet (which is my craft closet) and I found some blank canvas. So I decided enough was enough! I had previously made art to match our downstairs bathroom, so why not this one, too?

So I grabbed a pencil and sketched out my idea. And hung it up to make sure I liked it.

Satisfied, I went on to painting. Had a hard time deciding what the background color should be. It just looks white in the photos, but there’s a lot more texture to it. I started out with more of a dark tan, but hated it. So while white isn’t too exciting, I think it works. And mixing some of the colors was a bitch. I realized just how long I haven’t painted — some of my tubes were completely dried out. See what my end palette looked like below. (Don’t worry. It was not clean to start with. It actually hangs on my wall when not in use.) (And, yes, that photo was taken in the bathroom. I might have painted in there because I didn’t want to take the shower curtain off and on. Call me lazy, I saved two steps!)

And, drum roll, please ….. The end product!

I haven’t sealed it yet, so I still need to do that, but here is what it looks like up.

And so that’s it. Lesson learned: Can’t find the art you want? Make it yourself.

July 16, 2012 at 4:45 am 5 comments

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