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Tuesday, February 21, 2012


I moved into my condo July 1st this summer and up until this weekend, hadn't painted a thing. I know myself pretty well, and I was afraid that the second I got a wall painted I'd hate the color and want to change it. 

Last week Drew casually suggested that he might have time to paint the bathroom over the long weekend. So on Friday we went to Menards and picked out a Tiffany blue paint for the walls in the bathroom, and a teal color for an accent wall behind the sink. I tried to help Drew for a few minutes, but it quickly became apparent that Drew was better off painting by himself. (Let's be honest, if I were painting, paint would end up all over the ceiling, floors and furniture). So I did the only natural thing a girl could do in this situation, I opened a Mike's Hard Lemonade, plopped down on top of the plastic in the tub and supervised.

Well, the bathroom looked so fabulous I suddenly couldn't believe we had waited so long to paint. Poor Drew probably wished he had never brought up painting because then I was on his case until we, or rather he, finished painting the whole place. Being the wonderfully patient man that he is, he went to Menards again yesterday and we picked out a grayish-blue for the bedroom walls and a red accent wall. It looks AMAZING! I love it! Bonnie says colors release endorphins... so all the more reason to get paint crazy!

We still aren't sure about the great room, but I'm leaning towards beige/cream walls with a green wall along the kitchen wall. I'm open to ideas! McCayla thinks I should move the red and black decorations into the bedroom, and stick to a natural/green toned theme for the great room.

Pictures to come... but because blogs without pics are boring... Here is a craft my mom and I made for hostess gifts over the holidays. These two bottles are both thanksgiving themed, but it is really easy to make them for any occasion. The key is to buy scraps of cloth and ribbons in the clearance section at the craft store. It is okay to splurge on the burlap and some raffia (which isn't pictured here, but should be!) It is a great way to snaz up your hostess gift!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


Recently, I had a girls night with some of my favorite gals. Because Pinterest has suddently made crafting cool again, we decided to try some projects. We made these mittens out of old sweaters from the thrift store and scraps of left over fleece from the craft store and old fleece jackets. When my mitten making skills improve a bit, I'm going to repurpose some old family heirloom sweaters into mittens for my aunts! This is a great way to pass the time while watching tv... although the first pair takes about ten hours. After spending about six hours on my first mitten I held it up to Bryana in triumph, only to discover I had knitted the bottom shut! I ended up redoing the first pair entirely. The only rule is: you have to give away the mittens you make! 

I'm lucky enough to have a really cool aunt and uncle, the type of aunt and uncle everyone wishes they had but only a few are lucky enough to actually have them. Mary is a nurse, a masseuse, a horsewoman and a very organic, natural, peaceful lady. She has two Norwegian Fjord Horses that she drives with a cart, and she knows everything there is to know about being a healthy, stylish, and resourceful woman. She uses essential oils, turns antique jewelry into really unique statement pieces, dries her own herbs and flowers, cans veggies from her garden, makes a mean pie and is overall a really neat woman. Her husband Bob is an expert brewer and a master candle maker.  He can put your wedding invitation, dried flowers from a special bouquet, stones, antlers, bullet shells, driftwood, just about anything into a really beautiful candle. 
Check out his site:

Anyhow, these two have taught me just a little bit about candle making and I'm giving it my best shot. The first several tries were... epic failures. I wish I had taken some pictures of the first candles. Bryana asked me to help her make some stone candles for her wedding, so I've been trying to improve. We tried our hand over girls night weekend and had some promising results! 

Here is the candle before we melted the wax off the rocks. 

Neither Bry or I had ever used a blow torch, so it was a little scary...

Voila! The final products! The writing on the square candle is from an engagement card . We made the tea lites in a muffin pan! Trust me, these candles are hideous compared to Bob's... but it was a blast and at least now I have some confidence that we'll be able to make candles for Bry's wedding! 

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Memories of Valentine's Past

In elementary school, I spent weeks, if not months planning out my valentine's box. One year I made a paper-mache basketball and another year I made a spaceship. I also spent weeks, if not months, dreading the many hours it would take me to fill out each individual valentine with the name of my classmate and "from Amanda". Those were the days. I still hold it against the candy companies that they made me categorize my friendships into normal size valentines, and the larger valentines for your "extra-special" friends. I agonized over who to give the larger valentines to. Sometimes they would make things even more complicated by adding a third valentine, for your extra-extra-special valentines.

In high school, the danceline ran a fundraiser on Valentine's Day. For $2 you could have a carnation delivered to anyone in the school. Yellow for friendship, pink for a crush and red for love. The number and colors of carnations you did, or didn't, receive basically ranked your 'coolness' in front of your classmates. It was very stressful, waiting in your seat praying that at least one carnation would be for you... thanks to my mom there was always at least one carnation for me! 

In college, Keeley and I enjoyed complaining around Valentine's Day quite a bit. (To be fair, one of our favorite pastimes as friends is complaining.)  One time, Keeley and I were sulking around in the dark blaring our "break-up" playlist on itunes. I remember going into Kelsey and Sarah's room, where the lights were on, they were both dressed up and the shelves were lined with bouquets. In reality, I think there were probably four bouquets- one from home and one from a boy for each girl- but in my mind there were at least 8 bouquets in that room. 

Now I'm with my permanent Valentine, and I don't want to spoil the surprise but let's just say I got him something that has to do with trampolines... lots and lots of trampolines... Last year I got him a vacuum cleaner so I figured I had to get him  something cool to make up for it. 

Anyway, if you are reading this, you are probably one of my good pals... because let's face it only the people I force to read this blog actually do read, if I were giving you a Valentine, I'd definitely be giving you one of the big Valentines out of the package... 

xoxo, Amanda