Have Hair, Must Accessorize.

My girl was born with hair. I mean, a lot of it. No lie, the first thing I heard a nurse say when Isla was born was “whoa, look at all that hair!” In fact, a nurse who came in to hook me up to some monitor while I was in labour told me she was going to have a lot of hair (but that’s a story for another day).

I’m not planning to cut it for a long time, but Sweetpea’s bangs get in her eyes, so I will do what I can to manage that. Most of the time, this involves pushing her bangs to the side dozens of times a day, but more and more I’m putting her in these little crochet hairbands, and while there’s no clip in this photo, pretty clips attach right to the hairband to mix and match for any number of outfits.

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Cute, Right?

So, I’ve been dreaming up a project to hold all of Sweet Pea’s pretty accessories. Pinterest directed me to dozens of pictures of ribbon-based clip holders, and while there are plenty of places to buy them, none were exactly what I was looking for. A cheap die-cut frame and some clearance ribbon from Michaels, and we were ready to go.

First, two coats of shockingly vivid spray paint.

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Next, cut and laid plenty of ribbons across in a visually pleasing pattern, and secured them with hot glue. I added a strip of ribbon across the back because it looks tidy, even though nobody will be looking at the back. I’m just that way. Excuse the one ribbon with poor manners, please.

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I realized that the best place to put this when complete was going to be the door to Sweetpea’s room. So, when I went out for more glue gun sticks, I also picked up some small wood painted letters. Out of interest, why does everybody need L so badly? I could only get it in black (which luckily, worked out just fine).

The Mr. helped me out by securing the finished project to the wall… I’ll show you in a moment. I was pretty pleased with how cute it was overall, but you know what’s not cute? These screws.

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They are, however, easy to cover up.

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While tidying up today, I spotted this little dragon which arrived in Sweetpea’s Christmas stocking. He’s adorable, exactly the right colour, and happy to hang out and hold stretch hairbands! Perfect.

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Here is the finish project in full.

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And finally, doing it’s job.

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I wish the lighting was better for these sorts of photos. I am absolutely in love with it turned out. Sweetpea is appropriately indifferent, of course, and I’m sure by the time she’s old enough to notice, it will just be part of the woodwork. But, these little projects make me happy, and for now, the pretty bows are really all about me anyway. 😉

Bonus photo. We’re in the planning stages of a Disney vacation, and Sweetpea will be ready! Disney bows arrived fromMiss Maddi’s Cutie Creations just this afternoon. I might be a tad excited.

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The Nursery Revealed

Well hi… it’s been a while! We’ve been busy, and this is mostly a photographic post to show you what’s been done.

It may be silly that I was feeling so driven to get the nursery finished before the baby arrives. She’s likely going to sleep in our room for quite some time, but if nothing else, I needed space to put her STUFF, and I wasn’t happy to just cram it into an already crowded room. So, we cleaned it out, tore out carpet, removed an old wardrobe, painted, re-carpeted, bought furniture… and how about I just let you see it for yourself? As usual, you can click on any photo to see a larger version.

The view from the door toward the opposite corner, featuring the IKEA sun light. This is one of those things that fit with the vision but didn’t “click” until everything else got into the room – and now I love it. I also love the new IKEA wardrobe, made much prettier with decals. The curtains were mine when I was a little girl – excuse the slightly odd placement, but they’re held back over the rod for now. My mom is making new tiebacks, and she also made a matching valance for the small window:

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Wardrobe, you say? Girl’s got one:

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Straight ahead from the door, toward the crib. Bee mobile, muslin sheets (where do I get muslin for a queen-sized bed?), and three beautiful art panels:

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They say “sweet dreams…” and “I wish the moon could talk.” The canvas on the adjacent wall says “I wish for a bedtime story.”

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Crib, with a little IKEA holder for stuffies:

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A closer look at the forward-facing bookshelves, which we made out of IKEA spice racks. Books for babies are important to us, here, and I love that we’ve got a good collection going. At this rate, she’ll be able to take 100 kids books to Kindergarten for 100 Day, just like I did when I was 5… true story! This might be my favourite part of the whole room. That’s a cute classic set of Winnie the Pooh prints in between the shelves:

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Another great Pinterest idea – magazine rack to hold blankets that should be displayed:

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Under that small window we’ve put up a picture that was cross stitched by my grandmother. Pinkie and Blue Boy are a bit of a family thing. I’m not sure why, but I like it. This teddy bear version just had to be put up in the nursery:

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More bee decor above the change-table/dresser. Decal says “I wish I could touch the clouds with my toes…”

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You want closeups of those pictures? I know you do! They’re Anne of Green Gables prints which I picked up in PEI. I hadn’t found a spot for them in the house yet, but I absolutely adore them here. I think this kid has no choice but to like books.

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Cora thanks you for looking… I think she’s pleased, too!

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Well Hello There

It’s been a while, I know. I’ll just be honest – the first half and a bit of pregnancy was rough. I’m finally feeling like I’m coming back to life, and I thought I’d celebrate that with a quick post.

A lot of people have seen this on Facebook already, but I really should post there less and here more, and besides – I thought my grandma would want to see, too.

We welcomed the end of the 24/7 nausea and the beginning of spring with a bit of paint in what will be this baby girl’s (yes, that’s right, girl!) room. It took us more than a couple days to clear out what had become our storage/junk room, but the painting is going splendidly. I decided on white walls and a light green trim rather than the more-usual other way around, and I’m so glad I did. The Mr. is doing the painting, of course, but when he’d taken down the tape from this little window and I finally walked in to take a look, well… it took my breath away (and no, it wasn’t the fumes). How pretty is THIS?

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Somebody who saw this photo asked me if that was the REAL view. Yes, it really is. Our cherry tree is in full bloom, and is right outside this window. Pretty neat.

And this is the pretty light fixture we installed, and the reason these walls couldn’t stay yellow. It makes a pretty impressive picture all together, but more complete pictures will have to come later – we have a lot more work to do!

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Paint-Chip Calendar

I believe that my husband and I have recently found a calendar system that actually works for us. The Mr. likes a big huge dry-erase calendar on the wall. I like it too, but it has the great disadvantage of showing only one month at a time, which doesn’t allow you to schedule very far ahead. Enter my “control journal” notebook – a FlyLady concept that I’ll explain in more detail another day. But for now, it helpfully holds a small paper calendar for future months.

Like I say, it works for us and you all know that finding something that works in your house is most of the battle. But I was incredibly bored of the ugly whiteboard hanging in our hall. Inspired by Pinterest leading me to beautiful dry-erase calendars such as these pretty projects, I decided to tackle one of my own. I couldn’t decide on just one colour, so my SpiritPlay-teacher love-for-rainbows made an appearance. 7 colours, 7 days, everyone! Don’t let anybody fool you into a 6 colour rainbow…

This project was a bit time consuming but otherwise pretty easy. I gathered up my paint chips (Behr, who can resist polar bears marching along the top of each week?), selected a few pieces of poster board, and bought a cheap frame designed to hold a poster. I was originally going to do a white background, but I think the colours really pop better on black. The poster board we bought was, annoyingly, too small for this poster frame, so strips of purple (left) and blue (right) make nice areas for extra notes.

Once the colours have been cut and laid out, it’s really just a matter of gluing everything down. This did not go perfectly. I messed up a little bit with some measuring, so by the time you get to the last few days of the month everything is looking a little cozy. It doesn’t bother me enough to redo it… yet.

The poster frame is topped with thin flexible plastic, not glass. A fine-tip dry erase marker works just fine on this. Actually, I’m finding it erases even better than it did on the whiteboard – no stubborn streaks left behind.

Most of the projects I’ve seen have neatly trimmed squares, but I set this up so that the names of the colours show. Some, I chose specifically for us (“Glacier Bay! We’ve been there!”), and I couldn’t deny names like “Zephyr,” “Lazy Sunday” and “Bicycle Yellow” their chance to remain visible on our board.

Cheerfulness

How cute are these coffee-filter flowers? I had the kids in my church class make them some weeks ago, in preparation for our annual June flower service. Which was last week.

And in the time-honoured tradition of “Kate forgets to take things to church,” they didn’t make it. Not one kid asked, so I’m hoping they’d all forgotten.

But, I just couldn’t bear to throw them all away yet, and so they’ve made it to the farmhouse widows as a bit of cheerful and sunshiny decor for June. Which is so nice, since it was sunny today… but I hold out no hope of it staying that way!

Does anybody need a craft? I know there are some moms and dads who read this blog, and there couldn’t be an easier art activity for a rainy summer day. Here’s how:

1) Get out some coffee filters and have the kids colour them with washable markers. You can colour too, I won’t tell! I may have done a few of these myself… You don’t have to be tidy about it.
2) Cut them into a flower shape either before or after colouring.
3) Lay them on an old towel (or several) and spray with a water spritzer. This is the fun part! Watch the colours run and create a tie-dyed effect.
4) Let dry. They’ll flatten out, too, which is nice. Make stems or tape up – I like them where the sun can theoretically shine through.

You know… if we got some sunshine now and then. 😉

Some New Furniture

We’re moving things around in the farmhouse – part of this is because we haven’t put everything back to normal since Thanksgiving, but part of it is way more exciting than that.

We were given a beautiful antique sideboard for our kitchen.

AKA, “I have more room for my china/dishes obsession.”

I was worried it was going to look too dark in my kitchen, but I actually really love it against the yellow wall. I’m planning to brighten things up by painting the cupboards white soon, and am considering a new light fixture as well. Now that I’m happy with the bathroom (for now), it’s time to get the kitchen the way I want it.

The sideboard is holding some freshly-washed crystal wine glasses today, and I’m sure they gleam more brightly all of a sudden!

The hanging plates are new, too. The picture isn’t great, but I love that robin’s-egg blue. There will be more coming.

A “New” Bathroom

I am pleased by very simple things in my house. We’re lucky to be able to do pretty much whatever we want here. These small changes and touches really seem to make a place feel like “ours” in a way we’ve not been able to experience before.

We live in a small house, with a small bathroom. When we moved in the bathroom had, beside the sink, one of those towel rings. You know the kind… they’re designed to hold one towel and absolutely nothing else. Pretty if you have  a luxury of space, or maybe for a guest bathroom, but kind of impractical in the only bathroom with no counter space. So I picked out a little glass shelf with a towel bar, thinking I could at least store some things on top. As an aside, these shelves ranged from $80 – $120 at Home Depot. I bought mine at Walmart for $20. Love it or hate it, sometimes it’s the only way to go.

Simple, right?

Not really. You see – the bathroom as it had been was painted a sort of blush to match the tiles. When the Mr. took down the towel ring, we were left with a lavender square. “No problem! This will be my first patch up job,” I think to myself. I carefully filled the hole (and a few others, while I was at it), found the correct paint from the selection in the basement, and patched.

Only I was wrong about the “correct paint.” So suddenly I had a blush wall with brownish patches, and nowhere to hang a towel. Classy.

It was time to start again. Since there’s so much paint in the basement and I’m a bit cheap this way, I went “shopping” down there. I selected this beautiful cream colour that we used for the hallway and part of the living room. It looks quite yellow in my bathroom light, but I love it. Here it is, freshly painted by the Mr. with my pretty shelf newly installed.

I was so pleased that I treated myself to a new hand towel and a pretty candle. I found the starfish which had been waiting for it’s home. It was a gift from my flower girl on our wedding day. I’m loving this cream/yellow/turquoise/blush (on the shower tiles) combination in a small room.

Bathroom improvement round #2 still to come, but I’m really happy with it so far. What do you think?