What’s Going On?

Oh hey!

Awkward Hello

I have been MIA for a while. I definitely have had a lot going on, it was not for lack of content. Just lack of time to write. I know, my forever excuse.

Let’s see….what to update?

I finally put my medal racks up in my apartment.

Medal Racks

Only took me 9 months….

I love my new medal/bib rack from York Sign Shop on Etsy. It makes me realize how many more states I need to run in!

Speaking of running.

Running

The weather has been nice enough to start running outside again!

Crazy Weather

But then 2 days later it will snow, soย ya there is that.

My pyrex obsession has gotten so out of hand I needed a new place to put it all.

Pyrex

Luckily IKEA has some nice shelves, and Cheryl enjoys putting IKEA stuff together.

When Cheryl was down a few weeks ago I made her do the Snapchat face swap thing that everyone is doing…

Twin Face Swap

Twin face swap!

Never Looked Better

I recently went to Washington DC.

Washington DC

Hi Mr. President! More on that another day.

Obama Hello

My diet has been ok.ย I have been experimenting with calorie counts and new recipes. You can’t go wrong with zoodles.

Zoodles

Then today was the first day of spring and it snowed.

Spring Ritas

But Rita’s was free so everything evened itself out!

So that was a quick overview of random life lately. Chat soon? Let’s hope.

15 DIY Projects in 2015

I love being crafty. There I said it. One of my favorite ways to de-stress is to do a DIY project. That being said, I am also a procrastinator.

I keep getting all these great ideas for things I want to DIY, but my follow-through is terrible. I mean it took me over a year to refurb the Singer Sewing Table, and I technically am not even finished with it yet.

So I have decided to give myself an actual list this year of my top 15 DIY projects I want to finish this year. Wish me luck!

15 DIY Projects for 2015

1. Cork Board Fun
I bought a square cork board a few months ago to put all my Disney pins on. Right now it is hanging up plain as can be. I already bought paint and a fun chevron pattern to spruce it up. Now I just need to actually do it!

01 Cork Board

2. Dresser Revamp
In our back room we have an old dresser. It was in my room when I was younger, but when we moved we stored it in the back. Now it just collects junk and the bottom two drawers are broken. I want to fix it up by removing the top drawer completely, putting in a bottom and using wicker baskets there. The bottom two drawers I want to fix and then I want to paint the whole thing. Once I am done with that I will add new hardwareย and maybe even give it a distressed look!

02 Dresser

3. Basement Ikea Dresser Facelift
For some reason whenever someone asks if I want furniture, I always say yes. In our basement we have a few old dressers, but one in particular I got from a friend from Ikea. It’s an old Malm dresser, but the top are two side by side smaller drawers. I want to paint the whole thing and add some hardware to spruce it up.

03 Ikea Dresser

4. Bookcase Love
My dad built my mom a bookcase back when they first got married. It used to be in the basement of our old house, but somehow it wound up in our garage for a long time and now it looks beat up. I want to give it some TLC. I haven’t decided if I want to paint it or just sand and restain it. I definitely want to add a pattern decal or wallpaper to the backing and put some small legs on it so it doesn’t rest on the floor.

04 Bookcase

5. Chest of Drawers
Also hanging out in our basement is an old chest of drawers. It is also just collecting junk so I want to help make it useful. I want to start by removing the top two drawers. Not sure yet if I want to make that whole area a hollow space, or just make them open shelves. Next I want to paint the whole thing and add new hardware.

05 Drawers

6. Old Tires Utilized
For some reason when my dad got new tires (back in the day) he kept the old ones. They have been collecting leaves behind our shed for years now and no one will take them (trust me I have looked). I have decided since we can’t get rid of them (legally) then we should do something with them. I found a great tutorial to turn them into foot rests! You just need some rope/twine, wood and legs. These might be great in the backyard or living room. I can even try and turn them into planters if that fails.

06 Tire Footrest

7. Pallet Coat Rack
Two years ago when my friend moved she was going to get rid of a pallet. Since I take stuff I don’t need I told her I would take it, and it has been sitting in my house since. I also got some old doorknobs from my cousin. They are hand painted and were too pretty to throw out. My plan is to use wood from the pallet and the knobs to make a coat rack.

07 Pallet Coat Rack

8. Beer Crate Table
I got my Miller High Life beer crate off Etsy last year. My original plan was to put it on the Singer base, but both were just too cool to put together. It’s in my room holding movies and random stuff. Now I want to find legs and make this beer crate a table. Maybe I can even figure out a way to make it a cooler in the summer!

08 Beer Crate Table

9. Tools Organization
My dad was the guy who always had the right tool you needed. When we were younger for Christmas we always bought him the latest tool gadget. Well we now have more tools than Home Depot. The problem is they are EVERYWHERE! I need to first get all of them together and organize everything. Then I need to build some sort of pegboard organizer so we know where everything is. Maybe even something that has drawers for all the screws, nails, nuts and bolts.

09 Tools

10. Bedroom Curtains
My room is odd. I have two windows, but both need short curtains. It is not easy to find short curtains so for the past few years I just double over the long curtains. I want to make my own blackout curtains to the height I need.

10 Curtains

11. Chalkboard Race Bib and Medal Holder
My race medals have gotten out of hand. Right now I have two medal racks and both of them are full. A few years ago I made myself a bib holder. I saw a cool one on Etsy that is a bib holder and a medal holder. The back is chalkboard so every PR you can write down!

11 Race Bib Medal Holder

12. Jewelry Holder
I don’t have a lot of jewelry, but I have enough. I bought a dinky spinning 3 sided holder a few years ago, but it takes up space on my dresser. I was trying to figure out what to do with the drawers from my Singer table and then I saw this tutorial and decided it would be a great way to use the drawers!

12 Jewelry Display

13. Bottle Opener
I am a big beer fan. One thing I have always wanted to make, but never could figure out how, is a bottle opener. This Miller Lite one is so cool I have to attempt to make it myself!

13 Bottle Opener

14. Mason Jar Vase
Now that I have my Singer table, I need to decorate it. I found a cool chevron rusted metal basket to put mail in, but I need something for flowers. I think mason jar vases are so cute so I want to make a few and get some fake flowers to spruce up the table.

14 Mason Jar Vase

15. Ladder Shelf
This will be my most intense DIY project. We have an old wire shelf in my bathroom downstairs. I would love to build something like this to replace it!

15 Ladder Shelf

Let’s not forget my window frame chalkboard for the kitchen and finishing up (to my standards) the Singer table. Those two I didn’t include because they are partly done.

Think I can do all of these DIY projects this year?

Backyard Oasis

So I am pretty sure I have mentioned this on more than one occasion, but my mom loves to sit outside. She has always loved sitting in the backyard in the summer and grilling. We have always had a table and chairs and an umbrella in the back. Recently my mom decided she wanted to be more comfortable out there. We have been doing a lot of house projects so we figured we could just add it to the list.

Originally we were thinking of adding a deck onto the back of the house. We have a small sun room so we figured we could build off from that. Well that is EXPENSIVE. So we thought why not just get a bunch of stones and do the same thing like a deck but made of stone. It was cheeper than a deck, but still very expensive. Also when we were looking at the bricks they were all very rough and not something you would want to walk around on all the time.

Finally my mom said she just wants a place to sit and not worry if it starts to rain. She suggested a gazebo so I looked up reviews for gazebos online. Most were not positive. They fell apart, ripped, flew away! Finally I found on at Lowe’s that had amazing reviews. We went there Mother’s Day weekend to check it out and fell in love with the size and features. Since they didn’t have any in stock at our local store we drove to another store and bought it. The box was too big for my car so we had it delivered. With scheduling conflicts it took about two weeks, but we finally got it.

Cheryl and I have half day Fridays so we decided to surprise our mom and put it up for her for the weekend. We had a lot of pieces to start out.

Cheryl and I pride ourselves on being pretty handy. We got to work organizing the pieces and reading the instructions. We started putting the sides and top pieces together and realized we would need a ladder and someone else to help. I assumed you put the top together then put it on the legs and lifted the legs up. You really had to build it standing and being short was not helping. Luckily my mom came home to help out a little.

We spent a lot of time standing on the ladder to put pieces together. Oh short people problems. Finally we had the frame done and had to work on the cover. That was a slight issue since it went OVER the gazebo. I did some finagling while standing on the very top of the ladder steps, but I was able to drape it down so it could get attached.

Then we had to hook all the side panels on. We liked this gazebo because it had a bug net but also a privacy screen on all four sides. Now if we don’t want to deal with bugs (or the annoying neighbors) we have options for how to close up the sides.

So now we had ourselves a very awesome gazebo. We also got an outdoor rug to put the table on. We had the gazebo up a week or two and decided that we just needed more. My mom liked to relax, but it’s hard to lounge sitting at a table. We went back to Home Depot to look at other outdoor seats when we came across some awesome tiles.

They were more expensive than stone tiles would have been, but they are made of recycled tires so they are soft and light. We decided to just go for it and got enough to cover under the gazebo. This is where the challenge started.

When we got home we tried to see if we could just lay the tiles down on the grass, but it was too plush and moved all over. We realized we were going to need to get rid of the grass under the gazebo. We started Saturday afternoon by using a knife and spades to cut the grass and then dig it out. It was a lot of work. We were barely getting anywhere. We decided to stop for the night when our family came over. We looked online into ways to remove grass, but the machines were either too heavy for us to get home or your grass had to be dead. So many issues.

Sunday morning I decided to head back to Home Depot and get a shovel. I decided that we needed to make the outside edge of the gazebo straight but anything inside we could just hack away at the grass and a shovel would be faster.

So we started digging, and digging, and digging. It was a good 4-5 hours of digging and a lot of grass to remove, but we finally got it all up.

Laying the tiles down was a lot easier. We figured out the first row and only had to cut off a little of the last tile to fit into our frame of cut out grass. The tiles are held together by clips underneath them. We spread sand down on the ground to stop more grass from growing up into the tiles. We put them down down by row. We made sure to even out the ground (as much as we could) so they were all flat and even.

And now we have a backyard oasis! We moved the table sideways and brought out two IKEA Poang chairs we had in the house that we don’t really use. Now we have a place to relax and read (or nap) and also a place to sit down and eat. My mom LOVES it out there. She has fallen asleep a few times and on the weekends when it is nice she barely comes inside at all.

We just bought some battery powered string lights for inside (since we don’t have outdoor power) and we are going to make a mason jar “chandelier” for them to hang into. I love our new backyard!