Monday, March 29, 2010

On the road

I love seeing new places. I like going back to slightly-familiar places too. Mr. C's job doesn't call for much traveling...he gets to come home every night, and I am so blessed that when he does travel, I get to go with him.
This week is such a time. There's a two day conference in Santa Clara (which is a 5 hour drive from our home) that he's attending, and I'm his traveling pal this time.
As I type this, he's sitting in the Santa Clara Convention Center, learning new (and I'm sure intriguing) things about memory design...and I'm ensconced in a cushy leather chair at a little Starbucks a few minute's drive away.
This little trip away from our comfy home got me thinking; what is it I just can't (or wouldn't want to) leave the house without when traveling? and here's what I came up with

My (surprisingly short) can't-travel-without-it list:

Some form of entertainment. Fortunately, my phone can double as this, and I'm never without my phone.

Baby wipes. Oh my. These are so incredibly handy. They really aren't just for kiddos. Forgot your face wash? no worries, baby wipes are sensitive enough to use on your face. Stepped in a nasty mud puddle and dirtied your only pair of shoes? no problem, you can clean 'em up in a jiffy. Spilled coffee on your car upholstery? don't break a sweat, you have baby wipes.
Ahhh, baby wipes. They have saved my hide more than once. I've taken to just leaving a small container in my car at all times.

Water. 9.99 times out of 10, I'm glad I remembered to bring some.

A toothbrush and toothpaste. Even when you don't think you're going to be gone overnight. These might come in handy instead.

Some sort of painkiller.... Aspirin, Ibuprofen, know what I mean.

So what about you? do you have any tips for making short trips easier? I'd love to hear them.

Monday, March 22, 2010

A quick change

Canadian House & Home, photo nabbed from Poppytalk

Do you want to freshen your decor for Spring? Want to make something cute in 5 minutes? here's what you'll need:

Acrylic paint -any color you like! I chose white.
Glass bottles, jars, or vases (clean, dry, labels removed).

Any glass, but especially jars and bottles with interesting shapes, will look great with this technique.

Okay now, take your paint, dribble a bit inside your jar/bottle/vase. Turn and tilt the glass carefully to cause the paint to coat the inside.

Continue to turn and tilt until paint isn't spreading, then add more and continue the turning and twirling until the entire inside surface is covered with a smooth coat of paint. Just don't touch the paint! it'll ruin the super-smooth effect. I made the mistake of being impatient, and it took a lot more time to fix the mess I made than it would have to just wait for the paint to spread.

If you have bald patches, dribble a small amount of paint on the area (or at least nearby) to coat it. Let the paint dry thoroughly before using.

And there you have it! a brand-new, sleek and shiny, personalized vase! and this took me less than 10 minutes to do both of these.

Here's a bunch of beverage bottles made interesting with bright, punchy hues:

Article from Real Living, photo nabbed from Poppytalk

Thursday, March 18, 2010

A mini kitchen

As a little girl I adored playing "kitchen" and with my siblings. We had a Fisher-Price plastic play kitchen, complete with fake food, small dishes, and a little fridge and oven. I never tired of "making" dinner for my little brothers and sisters. Even now, miniature dishes and cute play food make me smile and wish I had a little girl to lavish tiny kitchen accouterments on.
So, although Mr. C and I have not yet had children, we decided to build a little kitchen -just for the fun of it.
The entire project cost $25, and came together very quickly.

I already owned:
a stainless steel bowl with a 1/4" rim
a miniature pots and pans set, dishes, etc.

Here's what we needed to purchase:

From Ikea:
LACK side table ($4 from the "As-is" section)
6 GROGGY stainless steel coasters ($5.99)
2 SNODD knobs ($3.99)
2 BYGEL rails ($1.99 each)
GRUNDTAL S-hooks ($2.99)
BYGEL wire basket ($1.99)

From the local hardware store:
Various screws (~$2.00)
3M adhesive strips ($1.99)

Okay, now for the fun part -how we hacked various Ikea items to make a play kitchen!
First, I had my handy Mr. C cut a hole in the table (with his ever-so-useful Dremel tool) where I wanted to use my stainless steel bowl for a "sink".
We attached the BYGEL rails to either side to hold the S-hooks and basket (for dish storage, of course!).
Using 3M adhesive strips, we adhered the metal coasters to the top of the side table for a "stove" and attached the knobs (screwed through the table) next to the stove-top. Mr. C figured out how to make the knobs turn-able, how fun is that?!
And because I had an extra LACK side table available, I cozied it up next to my new kitchen to use as a table.I'm hoping to find a small faucet with knobs that I can install by the sink, but until then, we'll just use our imaginations.

The only problem is now I'd rather make pretend dinners than real ones!

Time to Par-tay!

Mr. C is turning 30 very soon, and to celebrate, we're going to do what he loves best: have a bunch of people over to party with! and, because the both of us are young at heart, we're planning a good-old-fashioned-carnival themed party.

Here's some of my inspiration:

And here's my plan in pictures:

What's YOUR favorite part of a carnival or county fair? I'd love to know how I can better capture the magic and fun of a carnival, so do tell!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Sharin' the love

I have a great company to share with you...
This is the most exciting company I've discovered in a very long while -a woman's clothing company that values modesty as much as it does fashion.
Here's a sampling of their offerings:

And can you believe this swimsuit?! I am so excited to see a truly modest piece of swimwear!

The company's founder, Christa Taylor, has a neat blog about modest and feminine dressing, beauty, etc. In her own words "I’m a Christian who just happens to be working in fashion"

So go check it out and see if anything catches your fancy!

P.S. I don't get any sort of kickback for mentioning this company, I just think they're great and hoped you would too.