May 16, 2016

DIY // Painting Cabinet Hardware + Restoring Cabinets

One simple, inexpensive way to update your kitchen or bathroom is to paint your hardware. The kitchen at our new house is 20 years old, so it had the original brass knobs in the kitchen and bathrooms. Which also meant brass hinges, brass screws, etc. It may have been great in the 80's and 90's, but I was ready for a change.

So, in-between soccer practices, planning a graduation party and babysitting an extra two kids during the week - I decided to update the hardware in our kitchen and bathrooms. (Yes, I'm officially crazy!) I found some new knobs that I loved at Home Depot, but I didn't want to spend $300 on hinges just for our kitchen alone. So, I decided to spray-paint them with Rustoleum oil rubbed bronze. Over 300 painted screws and hinges later, the kitchen and bathrooms are finally done - and I love how they all turned out!

(My sore arms and fingers will thank me later.)

Here's the before - right after we moved in:

And the afters:

Once I rehung the cabinet doors with the painted hinges and replaced all the knobs, I removed the old felt pads with Goo Gone and applied new ones. Then, I cleaned all the cabinets inside and out with Scott's Liquid Gold wood cleaner to restore the wood. Just cleaning the cabinets alone made a huge difference in each room as they were shiny and looked like new again!

So glad it.is.done. One less thing on my home project to-do list!

Rustoleum oil rubbed bronze spray paint | Home Depot
Liberty Mandara 1-1/4" Cocoa Bronze Cabinet Knob | Home Depot
Scott's Liquid Gold wood cleaner + preservative | Kroger
Goo Gone | Home Depot
Small round felt pads | Home Depot

May 12, 2016

Our Farmhouse-Style Dining Room

Back in early March, I decided to renovate our dining room. Since it only housed our dining table and benches (and chairs that kept falling apart), it really didn't take a lot to renovate it other than a couple good coats of paint and some new sturdy chairs. Well...and something to go on the walls.

The walls were a baby blue color before - not really the look I was going for:

The chandelier wasn't my style either. Thankfully, my friend Crystal was selling her old chandelier, so I bought it from her real cheap and spray-painted it with Rustoleum's oil rubbed bronze. (It was originally brass before she painted it white.)

It looked brand new when I was done!

Next up was the big job of painting. I chose my favorite Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter color (color-matched with Lowe's Valspar primer + paint) and got to town. Four hours + 2 coats later, it was done!

So, the room went from this:

To this:

To finally this:

I moved the two large benches along the back wall and hung those rustic chevron wood wall organizers with 4x6 matted photos in clips to create our family photo wall that I've always dreamed of. I hung them with 3M Command strips, and they all fit together perfectly! (Plus, I love that I can change them out anytime I want!)

I found 8 new black metal chairs, added a few pillows and decorative items, and it's a rustic dining room that we will love and treasure and use for many years to come. (The corner wall will one day hold a china cabinet full of china, glasses and extra silverware - perfect for entertaining family and friends.)

So blessed and grateful to have this finished space!

Paint color | Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter
Farmhouse table + benches | handmade
Black metal chairs |  6 chairs from walmart.com, 2 from overstock.com (exact same chair)
Table runner | World Market
Candlesticks | Michael's
Decorative planters | TJ Maxx
Chandelier | Gift from a friend
Rustoleum oil rubbed bronze spray paint | Home Depot
Throw pillows | Old Time Pottery
Chevron wood wall organizers | Hobby Lobby
Cianci Place personalized wood sign | Steponitart shop on Etsy
White Corelle plates | Walmart (hung with 3M Command strips)
Black number stickers | Hobby Lobby

May 11, 2016

An Extra Two

At the end of April, my neighbor and friend Christina (who runs her own in-home daycare) introduced me to a friend of hers who needed last-minute childcare for her two young kids, ages 3 and 4. Like calling-Monday-at-6pm-during-soccer-practice kind of last-minute before babysitting them the next morning at 6am. Yeah, it's been crazy and busy and fun, but most of all just busy as I have an extra two with us every Tuesday and Thursday through the month of May. And, occasionally, we have Christina's 4-year-old daughter Natalie with us too!

Connor's happy to have some extra playmates during the week, and they've all become little buddies. Plus, a little extra money isn't too bad either.

So, if you see a crazy mom running around Target or the mall with three little ducklings (or more) + two older kids after school having conversations like -

Let's make sure we're all sharing and taking turns.
Running and jumping off the couch onto your sister isn't a good idea.
No potty talk in public. And yes, that means no words like wieners or butts.
We don't drink liquid soap because it's bad for us.
No, we can't open the car doors while we're driving.
We don't throw food.
You'll have to hold it until our next stop!

Chances are it's me. And I'd love for you to stop and say hello.

Hopefully, I've remembered to brush my teeth. :)

May 4, 2016

Brooklyn's Go Fish Musical

The second grade class at the kids school performed their Go Fish musical on Monday night, and it was so fun to watch Brooklyn and her class perform as the "rainbow fish."

Check it out!

(Brooklyn's wearing a sun hat with sunglasses on the left side.)

My favorite song:

And the final number one more time...

Such a fun night with this cool chick.

(See that redhead in the back? Brooklyn heard he has a 2nd grade crush on her. And he's a huge Bama fan - ha!)

She loves her sweet teacher Mrs. M:

The art show was going on out in the school lobby. Brooklyn showed us her prized masterpiece in art class this year:

So proud of Brooklyn and all her hard work in second grade!

May 2, 2016

Soccer Season + Art

We started our spring with two boys in soccer this year, so the last few months have been nothing but busy. Jacob started his soccer season with practices and training for the school team back in February, and Connor started his season on the rec league in March. Jake usually had practices or games 3-4 times a week, while Connor had practice on Mondays from 5:00-6:00pm and games on Saturday mornings from 9:00-10:00am.

The hardest day during the spring months was Mondays because Jake either had practice until 4:30pm or a 4:30 game - which conflicted with Connor's practice in another town 40 minutes away. So, I had to get creative and lean on help from friends or Scot (depending if he was able to leave early from work). There were a lot of days that I was carpooling 2-3 smelly teenage boys from school to practice to away games with all their stuff in the back of my van at various times of the afternoon and night, so we learned real well what it was like to live life on the road. (Brooklyn and Connor were such troopers!)

But, all in all, it was all worth it. Every crazy day. Both boys had such a great time. Memories were made. Friendships and bonds were strengthened. Athletic skills were learned and sharpened.

The best part was watching a shy little Connor cry about sharing his ball at the first game and then seeing him run across the field at the end of the season, excited about playing the game and scoring several goals on his own...yep, it was totally worth it. They have done nothing but thrive + grow through soccer.

And this girl. Our creative, artsy one takes an art class on Saturday mornings, and she absolutely loves it! She's been busy making and creating all kinds of things.

These are a few of her favorites lately:

She is thriving + growing in her own artsy way too. We're thankful and blessed to see their passions and dreams being pursued and used by God. What a gift!
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