Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Project 365 - Week 17

Project 365 - One photo a day for a year. Kind of like a photographic journal of my entire year!

Day 113 - My five complimentary books have arrived! I'm a contributing designer in this edition of "Craft it NOW."

Day 114 - OK, this is a silly picture right? It's the first time we've ever used the self cleaning function on our oven. Amazing how it takes a task that could take physical hours, and turns it into a couple of pushes of a couple of buttons. It sparkles!

Day 115 - Our new furnace and air conditioner was just installed. I couldn't believe how quiet this air conditioner is. My neighbor is going to love me now because their master bedroom is on this side of the house. Our last one was so loud!

Day 116 - Homemade pizzas! We had so much sauce leftover that I froze the leftover so we can have individual pizzas anytime we want. I recently wrote an article on freezing food. In case you missed it, you can find it here.

Day 117 - Not feeling well today. Spent most of the day in bed. Punkie seems to know when I'm not feeling well because she refuses to leave my side.

Day 118 - Aren't these little measuring cups the cutest? They were a gift and they look so cute sitting on my kitchen counter.

Day 119 - Time with baby Paige today! She is so precious that I can't stand it! Oh yes I can, I'll deal with all the sweetness and preciousness.

For more of my Project 365 - Click HERE

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Project 365 - Week 16

Project 365 - One photo a day for a year. It's a photographic journal of my entire year!

Day 106 - Was out shooting photos to use for layering for backgrounds. This one was like hitting the jackpot! You should see the cool effect when I slip it behind a solid color, then put the transparency of that solid color at 80% to 90%. Great effect!

Day 107 - Doing some cutting for my most recent project. My lap desk that Brian made me sure did come in handy so I could watch a movie at the same time.

Day 108 - The beginnings of my Frog & Butterfly mug rug pattern. It was so much fun to work with these fun colors.

Day 109 - I wish this sewing machine had digital read-outs like my other one does. It's easier to jot down a number than to remember where to place the little slides when you find the combination for the perfect stitch size on your decorative stitching.

Day 110 - Easter with the family! We wanted greenery in the background so thank God we had this tree in our yard!

Day 111 - Poor Bubba choked on a dog treat and ended up at the vet. The doctor I work for was out of town so we took him somewhere else.

Day 112 -Took this picture of my neighbor's flowers while we were on our walk yesterday. I don't ever remember them before. She must have just planted them.

For more of my Project 365 - Click HERE

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Project 365 - Week 15

Project 365 - One photo a day for a year. Kind of like a photographic journal of my entire year!

Day 99 - Look at those beautiful blue skies! The temps have been warmer too, and soon there will be leaves on the trees.

Day 100 - Baby Paige day! Grandpa Brian is being funny again. Our little peanut gets cuter every time I see her.

Day 101 -Working on some Halloween in the studio today!

Day 102 - Brian replacing the bricks that he had to remove for the new gas and electric meters to be installed. It look so nice again!

Day 103 - Life is peeking through! So pretty and green.

Day 104 - We woke up to snow! This is after a couple of days in the 70's. Gotta love Chicago weather.

Day 105 - There is the pool, waiting for summer.

For more of my Project 365 - Click HERE

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Travel Tip - Peace of Mind While Traveling

I know for a fact that a lot of my readers have pets. And by visiting their blogs, I can tell that they really, really, love them! So if I ask any of you what you stress out over the most when away from home, I'll bet you all say that you worry about your pets. Obviously you can't leave your dogs home alone for more than several hours, but cats are pretty independent and can take care of themselves for a couple days before someone needs check them, freshen their food and water, and clean the litter box.

We like to take a lot of weekend trips as well as longer ones. I'm very lucky because I have wonderful neighbors to keep an eye on the house, and a good friend who lives close by and comes in to check on Punkie. Even with that, I'm still a nervous wreck.

I spent about $80 (each) and bought surveillance cameras for the rooms that she likes to hang out in. I'm able to view a live feed any time I wanted from my cellphone or a computer. They can even take snapshots every so many minutes (you set it up) and it can go to your email. I set one up just for this purpose so it doesn't clutter my main accounts.

I feel like I am able to enjoy my trips so much more because I could check on her anytime I wanted. Plus, I could monitor to make sure she was eating and drinking. 

If you do get one, I'd suggest one that has night vision and that will connect to your wireless router. No computer needs to be hooked to it, and since it works with your wireless router, you can put it in any room in the house. Mine had a really long electrical cord so I could put it nice and high to see the whole room. Another nice thing about the one that I bought is that it reset itself if we had a power outage.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Project 365 - Week 14

Project 365 - One photo a day for a year. Kind of like a photographic journal of my entire year!

Day 92 - A visit to the accountant for my first ever filing of quarterly taxes. This is a "yay" and a "not a yay."

Day 93 - Punkie helping out in the studio again. Everything I create must have the Punkie stamp of approval.

Day 94 - The decoupage tutorial for the blog. After all that, I ended up moving this one to the office and bringing the bigger one into the studio.

Day 95 - Our once a month dinner date with sis and her husband. This time we enjoyed our Frozen Long Island Iced Teas. Yummy!

Day 96 - It took me two days to reorganize all my files. I went through each one, and I filled up a garbage bag with non personal stuff and three baskets from the shredder.

Day 97 - I picked up a few beach rocks on our most recent excursion to the Lake. They are all washed and ready to be painted. Do you think I have enough?

Day 98 - Punkie loves her new spot by the window!

For more of my Project 365 - Click HERE

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Tutorial - Mod Podge File Cabinet (Mistakes & All)

I bought these filing drawers on sale for 40% off at Michaels. They are just what I need to keep my files in perfect order, but they were so boring! I've always wanted to try my hand at decoupage, so now is as good of a time as any. I even made a couple mistakes which I am more than willing to share with you in case you are (or plan to be) a decoupage first timer as well. I don't want you to waste time on the mistakes I made, or skip the steps I should not have skipped. Now that I've given this a try, I am definitely going to do it again! OK, here goes...


Mod Podge (this is the brand I used)
Liquid varnish (optional, but it gives a more durable finish)
Foam brushes (size depending on the size of your project)
Toothpicks (to keep your holes, if any, gunk free)
Disposable containers for liquids (preferably with lids)

**I used a rolling pin for smoothing out my fabric on my drawer fronts. I would not recommend using a rolling pin on any product other than Mod Podge. Mod Podge is non-toxic and water soluble. Your rolling pin will be washed clean with soap and water, and you don't have to worry about toxins soaking into the pin.

**If you are covering something where the drawer will go inside the cabinet (actually similar to mine, although I didn't encounter a major problem) you might have better luck using scrabooking paper or wrapping paper and cut it to the exact measurements of the drawer front. With the layers of Mod Podge, Varnish, and fabrics, you could be adding too much bulk for the drawers to close properly. In hindsight, I should have used the paper, but since I used a very lightweight fabric, I didn't have a problem I couldn't fix later. Will explain this toward the end.

You can also use the "crazy quilt" look where you cover just the front of the drawer with odd shapes and decoupage them on randomly until the whole front is covered.

1.  Remove any hardware, handles, or knobs if you are able to. If you are unable to remove them, you will have to work around them, but in most cases you will be able to remove them. 

2.  Measure the area you are going to be covering.

Sher's Mistake #1 - I did not measure where my holes were for my handle. This made finding them a bit of a challenge when I wanted to put them back on. So if your hardware has four holes like mine, measure at least one of the holes.

3.  Rough up your surface slightly with some sandpaper. To be completely honest with you, I have no idea what kind or grade I used. I went to my husband's workshop and grabbed a sheet. I do suppose you wouldn't want anything too rough or too fine. Find a happy medium. Clean away any dust with a damp cloth, followed by a dry cloth.

4.  Cut your ironed fabric about one inch or two bigger all the way around your project. You will trim away any excess later.

Sher's Mistake #2 - At my first try, I cut my fabric the exact size of the drawer front. Do not do this with fabric! Since fabric has a bias, it tends to stretch and you will not get nice straight edges when it becomes wet. Bummer, because I loved my first fabric choice so much. Fortunately, since the Mod Podge was still wet, I was able to wash it off and start over.

5.  Pour some of your Mod Podge into a disposable container. Using your foam brush, apply a generous amount on your surface, including the sides (unless you are using paper, then don't do the sides). You need to work quickly because this stuff dries quickly. I used a toothpick to keep the holes (my screw holes for the drawer pull) from accumulating the Mod Podge.

Place your fabric on top of the prepared surface. While you are doing this, place the lid over your container so it doesn't dry up. Smooth out your fabric on the top, and the sides. I found that a rolling pin helped for this part. Let this dry completely (15 to 20 minutes) before the next application of Mod Podge.

6.  Now that your project is dry, you can trim away any excess fabric that is hanging over the edges. I also trimmed away the corners so that they would lay flat. You also want to make sure that the area where you folded the fabric around the edges, is glued down very well so you don't add bulk. Too much bulk will not allow you to open or close your drawer freely if your drawer is designed like mine. 

7.  Now you can add a layer of Mod Podge on the fabric top and sides. You might even have to slip a little more Mod Podge under the edges at the sides so the fabric sticks well. Make sure you don't have any blobs or excess Mod Podge along the sides of the drawer front. Allow to dry 15 to 20 minutes if you plan to add another coat. 

I let mine dry for a few hours because instead of adding another coat of Mod Podge. I wanted a more durable finish so I used a varnish sealer over the Mod Podge. I found that only one coat was needed for the varnish. Be sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions for the varnish you are using, if you choose to use varnish.

8.  I let my drawers dry overnight, then in the morning I reattached my drawer pulls.

Since my drawers slide into the outer cabinet, I did have to do some extra fabric trimming with an exacto knife. There was also a couple spots where I had to secure a little better with a little more Mod Podge (under the fabric edges) at the sides of the drawer front. It did take a little effort to make sure my drawer slides in and out easily. You may or may not have this issue, depending on your drawer front, or if it is even a drawer you are covering. Like I mentioned before, I probably should have used paper and only covered the front, but all in all, I'm still glad I did it! I love the look and it was well worth the effort.

Now, to tackle the re-organization of all my files!  

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Project 365 - Week 13

Project 365 - One photo a day for a year. Kind of like a photographic journal of my entire year!

Day 85 - My new cellphone case arrived today. I also bought myself a camera bag that fits a few extra things. I'm ready for hiking!

Day 86 - What's my favorite day of all? Baby Paige day! The days I see her are the best.

Day 87 - After our Friday night dinner at Noodles & Company we went to Michaels. I didn't buy a basket, but I'll show you what I bought after I assemble it. Hint: it's for storage.

Day 88 - It doesn't match my grey and tan bathroom, but it says "Spring" so it's staying!

Day 89 - Took a walk on the beach with Brian. The weather was beautiful. You can see there is still some ice left.

Day 90 - Saw this crocus on our morning walk today. That tells me spring is here. 

Day 91 - Spent some time with the little princess today. It appears as if Baby Paige is a Blackhawks fan!

UPDATE! Remember back in Week 3 I took a photo of my black squirrel? Well, he's still here but in the past few weeks I've noticed that he lost most of his tail. He either got it caught in something, or someone tried to get him. But it hasn't slowed the little guy down one bit! He still runs and plays like he did before. He just looks real funny!

For more of my Project 365 - Click HERE
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...