Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Copy Craft

My friend Raegen introduced me to her Aunt's blog and I'm obsessed. This woman lives my dream life. She started by just making amazing handmade cards as a hobby and now her job is to blog about her craft projects. She truly gets paid to do what she loves. She even has a stamp collection made from her handwriting!

Here is the link to her blog if your interested in checking it out. Dawn McVey

I was scrolling through her blog when I found a fun craft project I wanted to make for all the women in my life for Christmas. Being that it was an accessory, it was right up my alley. I love anything you can use on multiple things! Here is her original post.

I don't have all the supplies she has in her arsenal (someday I hope I do!), so here is my adaptation of the pin.

Here are all the supplies I used. I don't have a die cut, so I used a stencil to trace the flower shape and individually cut it out. After looking at her original post again, I like the 3 layers and will have to see if I can find a stencil for that (or invest in a die cut).

I found lots of fun colors and prints in felt. I even found felt that had a texture to it.

I traced the stencil on the felt and cut out the individual flowers. I then took a coordinating button and hand sewed through the layers. After that, I cut out a rectangle of the felt that matched the bottom layer of the flower and used hot glue to attach a safety pin to the back. I covered the hot glue with the rectangle of felt.

Here are my creations:

I ended up using the pins to decorate the recipient's Christmas presents. (Please notice the crafty handmade pin placed next to the $0.10 stick on bows. Isn't that a coordinating classy look?)

Hopefully as my craft room is put together in the house (its supplies are currently residing in 3 other rooms), my craft projects will grow. I'm hoping to tackle some furniture refinishing, surface distressing, and a mason jar soap dispenser eventually. Maybe if I consider painting the guest room a craft, I'll be more excited to finish it too!

O Christmas Tree

I know that technically Christmas day is over, but I'd like to think the spirit of Christmas goes on a little longer. It has always been my family's tradition to keep the tree and decorations up until New Year's Day. I plan to keep the same schedule for my house.

Adam and I had planned to find a big permanent tree early in the season for our living room, but after hearing so many people tell us that they had found trees during the after Christmas sales we decided to get an affordable it-will-work-for-now tree and hunt for our dream tree after Christmas. I have always wanted 2 trees, one for my future sports room and sports theme ornaments and one for the living room for all our childhood ornaments. Luckily, this dream will get to come true thanks to the it-will-work-for-now tree and the full year I have to finish our sports room.

One of my favorite things to do every Christmas morning was to race down stairs and see what ornament Santa topped my presents with. My sisters and I normally woke up before my parents and we knew we couldn't open any presents or peek at our stockings until Mom and Dad got up, but we could see our ornaments. My family is filled with traditions and one of them is the theme of our ornaments. For the past 27 years, I always received bear ornaments. My mom always gets rocking horses, Christy always got musical instruments, until she switched her theme to glass ornaments, Monica always received angels, and Dad got whatever hobby he was into like photography, birds, bbq, and currently pigs (not really a hobby, but it is his current theme.) I followed Christy's footsteps and switched to stars this year. I started the same ornament tradition with Adam this year and got him a handyman reindeer.

Here are some pictures from Adam and my tree this year:

One of my oldest and favorite ornaments.
Looks like me right?
Some future sports tree ornaments

One of my favorite bear ornaments. Clara bear

Go Cats!

I haven't quite found the prefect tree topper yet.

The first of my star ornaments

Our tree in its entire glory.

Our new home ornament from Adam's parents
Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Current Project

Our first project is the guest room. When we moved in, we didn't put anything in the room except for an odor-eating candle. We suspect that the "gentleman" who occupied the room before sat and smoked 3 packs a day with the window and door sealed shut. I also kind of think he liked to hammer nails and anchor screws in the walls and ceilings just for fun.

Last night we braved the cold night to go buy 2 putty knifes and sandpaper, and make a side trip to Dick's for some Christmas shopping. (I think Adam was not interested in spackle-ing at all because he actually suggested the side shopping trip.) Once we got home, we attacked the walls. I can't say enough about the spackle that goes on pink and dries white... great home improvement invention! (I'm sure I'll discover more during our upcoming adventures.) Once we filled all the holes, the walls looked like they got a case of the chicken pox and were treated with a wholesale carton of calamine lotion.

Tonight I figured it would be a quick sand down and then we'd get to start priming... well we sanded at least. I hate the fact that the walls are textured (we discovered during our spackle-ing that there are a couple layers of a loud, sixtys-esque, floral patterned wallpaper under some plaster texture under a really bad, drippy paint job) but I like how it makes the sanding easy. No need to be perfect if there is suppose to be texture!

Three things we found tonight:
1. A giant hole in the wall near the floor behind the door. It seems like it opens into a duct and it is too big to be covered by a floorboard. Adam and I both swear that hole happend overnight. Neither one of us remember ever seeing it before.
2. We removed the vent cover to the wall vent and found there wasn't a duct behind it. You just see wood, no metal. Our heat is on (Yay new furnace!) but there really isn't any airflow coming from the vent.
3. A crack in the ceiling led to a large (to me) portion of the ceiling falling down. The hole revealed a really bad seam and taping job of the Sheetrock.

I'm not sure what to expect from the rest of the house when what was suppose to be a simple paint job has morphed into a chicken pox infected, swiss cheese hole-y, fake vented, first project attempt crapshoot! We'll see what tomorrow brings...

Fast Forward to Today

Here's a quick photo montage of 5 things that have happend in the past couple months while I've been on blog-hiatus...

1. We moved which means I finally got to unpack all of my amazing Fiestaware! This was the wash before first use... awesome!

2. A squirrel(s) devoured our housewarming jack-o-lantern.

3. Our first house project/chore... cleaning the overflowing gutters.

Abner helped pick up what came from the roof...

4. Our furnace was declared "condemned" and therefore commenced our first home purchase.

5. I made a yummy home cooked meal and we ate at the table for the first time. (Mushroom and Onion Chicken, Herb Roasted Yukon Gold potatoes, and carrots)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

So... Its been awhile.

I have a good excuse... We moved! To say that closing and actually getting moved into our house was a breeze, would be a complete lie. Let's just say we closed later than expected which in turn made a tight turn around to get out of our apartment and into our house before I left for a long work trip. Luckily, Adam and I have amazing parents, siblings, and friends that made the move actually happen!

(If you ever want to know my true feelings on Wells Fargo just ask. It may be almost 2 months since dealing with them, but I'm not sure I'm over it yet.)

Friday, October 1, 2010

Abner Dog

One year ago this week Adam and I found a picture on the Wayside Waifs website of a puppy named Roo.  Adam always says that I just turned and looked at him and said, "Rooooooooo!" He knew then that this puppy would be joining our little family.

I look back at pictures of when we got him and I can't believe how different he looks now. He still has his adorable under-bite and snaggletooth (those might be qualities only his parents would love), but he is rockin' his mullet a little more these days and he has put on a couple lbs since then. I'm not sure that his Halloween costume or Thanksgiving sweater are going to fit this year.

Halloween 2009 

Thanksgiving 2009

He may come running full speed into our room and jump directly on my head to wake me up with a cold sneeze in the face every single morning, but I can't imagine a better alarm clock. When I finally uncover my face from the comforter I use as a shield every morning, he is always there staring back at me from under his crazy eyebrow hairs with a look that just says, "Hi mom." with his tail wagging. 

Here is to one great year with Abner William Roo Brown Higgins (Abner for his old man face and Abner Doubleday, the inventor of baseball, William for Willie the Wildcat, Roo so he doesn't forget his roots, and Brown Higgins because we weren't married or engaged yet and I felt it was important to get my name in there too) and to many many more years (at least 20 if I have anything to do with it).

P.S. As I'm writing this, Abner is chewing on his own foot. You can't always get the full package of brains and looks.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


So even though we don't get to do any of the fun stuff first, a girl can dream way in advance right? This is the first time I have gotten to take complete control of decorating a whole house. I'm so use to living in an apartment where you can paint, if anything, just one wall and put holes in the walls only if you are willing to putty them before you leave. The thought of getting my hands on a whole house is a little overwhelming. I started googling other kitchens and living rooms to see if I could streamline my ideas or at least my likes. Here is what I've found so far that I like:

I love this look for our 2 freestanding walls in the kitchen. I can just picture a white farm table with yellow painted chairs.

And I've been dreaming about these yellow cabinet knobs ever since I first found this picture. I think they would be a great accent with the yellow chairs. I'm also obsessed with this celery/lime green color. When we registered for our wedding, I registered for a yellow and green kitchen that I felt existed in my future.

The living room I'm drawing a blank on. In the picture below I love the coffee table and the number 2 throw pillow, but I feel like the beige walls don't have enough "spice" for me. I do like the contrasting dark brown wall in the second picture below though. I'm worried about making our house a box of Skittles by painting every room a different color.

What I have discovered through all of this is that I am obsessed with Country Living magazine and can't wait to get my first month's subscription in the mail!

Check and check.

That title is both figurative and literal. We get to check off that we have had the inspection and started loan paper work, but we have also gotten to write two hefty checks.

We are thankful that the inspection didn't find any deal breakers, well for us at least (we still have to make it through a FHA appraisal). What we did discover through the inspection is that Adam and my list of priorities have changed from paint and matching appliances to insulation, sliding doors, windows, an electrical check, and a furnace cleaning.

So, if you come visit us the first year we are in our house... no judging on looks just appreciate how climate controlled you are. : )

Friday, September 24, 2010

Our Important Dates

March 13, 2008 - Our first date.
November 13, 2009 - The night we got engaged.
July 3, 2010 - Our wedding.
October 22, 2010 - The closing date on our first home.

We found a house. Not just any house but our first home. It is a short sale, which by the name you would think it would be fast and quick, however it is quite the opposite. Instead it is the most drawn out painful experience that plays with your emotions and patience. 

We would like to introduce our 4 bed/2 bath/ 2 car house we are trying to adopt...

After some ups and downs of bidding wars and waiting we finally found out yesterday that the bank accepted our offer (kind of... our offer plus $49). We are so ecstatic that this house we have been painting and renovating in our heads for the past couple weeks is one step closer to being ours. 

Along with an additional $49, the bank listed a closing date of "on or before Oct. 22". Eek! That is less than 29 days from the date we received the acceptance paperwork. We've been told it will be tight, but that we should be able to do it... if the house passes the FHA inspection. Good thing I finally found my favorite pumpkin ale to get me through the next week! Sweet liquid pumpkin pie to distract me. Do you think I can bring it with me when our inspector tells us everything that is wrong with our house?

Step one for a speedy close: Inspection - 12:45 Monday... check.