Stool Time

I have been looking for a little step stool/ottoman that I could use as a little low table next to an Ikea chaise lounge that I got for the office. You know, just a little spot wear I can rest a cup of tea while I read a book, or a landing area for my knitting ephemera. Well, I have been looking online and in stores for a while now with no such luck. So I decided, hey maybe I can figure out a way to make one!

I went to Joanne Fabrics and found a little unfinished step stool made out of pine. It seemed sturdy and was just the blank canvas I was looking for. I brought it home and painted it with some red acrylic paint I had around, then rubbed on some copper acrylic paint to give it a distressed feel and to soften the brightness of the red. I then took an old towel that I had cut up for rags and stapled it to the top to give it a little padding. Next I covered that with some remnant fabric that I had stashed and stapled it over the towel. . . and Voila! I am thrilled with how well this turned out. It was SUPER easy and was a simple, cheap (under $20!!) and eco-friendly solution. I could imagine making this again for a gift for a child or fellow vertically challenged adult.

Peonies

Just have to share about the peonies that I purchased yesterday at the farmers market. They are BEAUTIFUL. So luscious and full. I love them! They smell divine and are scenting the entire house. I can’t believe I got so many for only $15! Here are a couple more pictures of them for all to enjoy. I just wish that I could have smell-o vision on this for you.

Vanity Skirt

Today was a good day. I was able to finish sewing the skirt for the vanity that my mom gave me. It was made by her grandfather for her mother when she was young. I’ve made skirts for it before, but never with a machine. Usually just hand-stitching or rigging up something with fabric glue. I felt that they never really lived up to the original design and workmanship, so it has been naked for quite some time. I’ve had making one on my “101 things” list, in order to get myself motivated. Since I’ve figured out the sewing machine, aka Bro, I felt confident enough to give it another try. I went to Joann Fabrics to find the right material and decided to go with this white on white print. I like the whimsicality of the print, but felt that it was still subtle enough to be fairly neutral in case I move it to a different room or redecorate. I also decided to use some navy grosgrain ribbon on the upper edge to help finish it off and add a little color. I am super happy with how it turned out. (I personally think that the photo doesn’t do it justice!) Now I need to figure out what my next project will be. . .

Planters Complete

A few weekends back, Shawn and I built the planter boxes for the front porch. I put in a few plants when we got them finished, but they needed to be filled in a little more. So, this weekend we went back to Brennan’s and picked out some more plants to fill’em up. I decided to go with a purple, white, and yellow theme, since some of the plants in the yard have something similar going on. I think that they look good now, and will be fantastic once they have a chance to fill in a little.
We also got a little bench and a couple of chairs for the porch, so we have a place to sip some tea and admire the flowers. So, I think that the front porch is pretty much done. Now I need to move on to the back!

Busy Bee Weekend

This weekend was busy, busy, busy! The hubby and I tackled the project of building flower planters for the front porch. I have been searching for forever and a day for the perfect planters to put out front. I was pretty specific in what I wanted, long rectangular boxes that would stand between the columns of the front porch. I didn’t want them to be too high, but wanted them to fit the scale of the house. This proved to be impossible to find. The ones that I found were either too high, too small, too expensive, or too . . .ugly.

So, I decided to get a little DIY and construct exactly what I wanted. I measured out about what I wanted, drew up some simple plans, went over it with my contractor (Shawn) and got to work. And after a trip to Home Depot, two trips to Ace Hardware, and some manual labor from my hubby – I helped as much as I could – I had my planters! It only took a day to build and paint them, so on Sunday we went and bought some plants, soil, etc. and got them filled. I must say that they look great! Going to purchase a few more plants to fill them in some more, but otherwise a vast improvement to the barren porch. Now it looks like someone lives here! We even got two chairs and a small table to put out front, so we can sit out there and enjoy the fruits of our labor. Huzzah! 

**** I need to add a special thank you to my dear hubby, all of his hard work and patience with me as we completed this project does not go unappreciated. Yay for Team Colley!****

Vroom, Vroom, party starter!

Things have been crazy this week. After deciding this weekend that it was time for Smokey to be put out to pasture, things moved really quickly. We looked a quite a few cars and finally decided on a Honda CR-V. I wanted an SUV that would be able to handle these Wisconsin winters, yet nothing to larger and tank-like. It had to be fun to drive and have enough room for Walter and any future additions to Team Colley.

I was thinking about possibly going with a hybrid of some type, but the ones that are out there for SUVs are really expensive and I feel that the industry is still working out the kinks on them. So for right now, I am still a petrol girl. The nice thing at least is that I have great gas mileage and that Honda is really making strides as a “green” company. Plus, the car was manufactured in Ohio!

So anyways, after much negotiating, we pulled the trigger last night and signed the paperwork. She is sitting in the garage right now. I am going to go out there in a bit and reload all my CDs and misc. items back into it and basically spend some quality time with her. Most importantly, I need to come up with a good name! Shawn said the Blue Goose, but I am not really feeling it. Any suggestions?

It’s like an espresso ferrari!

Shawn and I exchanges gifts on Saturday morning before we drove down to my parents. He got me some really nice things, but I think one of the most surprising and exciting was an espresso machine!

Isn’t it beautiful? True Italian styling, down to the race car red finish! It makes a fabulous cup of espresso as well. Shawn included a ton of Ily for me, so I am ready to create some true caffinated bliss. I can’t wait to get back home to play “barista” with it. I don’t think I’ll ever have to go to Starbucks again!

Its like we’re at a hotel . . .

Hurray! Our new bed was delivered last night! So happy. We have been wanting to get a king-size bed forever. Our house in CMH was way to small for one, so now that we have the room, I was determined to get it. It is perfect, not too hard, not too soft, and miles of room! No more fighting for space or arms flaying into you in the middle of the night.

So we moved our old bed into the other guest bedroom. Now have two queen beds available for when people visit. So who’s coming out!?

My sigg

Hurray, I finally got my Sigg that I wanted so bad. Isn’t it the cutest? I love the grassy meadow print on it. Not to mention this thing is light a a feather and super durable. I have already dropped it a few times and not one scratch or dent! I also love the great little flip top/sports top thing. Never going to lose a cap again.

Now I can drink with a clear conscious about not contributing to the amount of plastic water bottles that are overflowing our landfills. And look so stylish while doing so!

Here Siggy

With all the hoopla in the news about the the amount of plastic water bottles that are overflowing our landfills, I have been wanting to switch to a refillable water bottle, like back in the good old college days. Unfortunately, those trusty Nalgene and other hard plastic bottles are made of polycarbonate (#7) which are now being shown to leach Bisphenol A, an estrogen-like chemical. Recent studies have linked BPA to breast cancer and early pruberty, as well as possible effects on infants. Canada is currently looking to ban all BPA products, and additional studies are being done here in the good ol’ USA. So what is a girl to do? Well, check out these super cool aluminum water bottles by Sigg. They have a BPA free liner, not to mention have super cool graphics and interchangeable lids. I am thinking of stocking up on a few real soon.