Tuesday, September 7, 2010

My New Bed

I found the most incredible website a few weeks ago.  I definitely want to pass this along, so be sure to check it out.  Make sure you have plenty of time, because you are going to want to spend some time perusing it.  It's ana-white.com.  I can't remember where I was or how I happened on it, but it really got me inspired.  My husband and I were looking for furniture for our bedroom for the past few years.  About 6 weeks ago, we were out looking again, and still didn't see anything the we could (a) agree on and (b) that we were willing to shell out the money on.  This website had a bed that caught my eye.  My hubby liked it too, which was even more amazing.  :)

So, we decided to build it.  We loaded up the kids in the minivan and made an evening of it.  We went out to dinner and then went to Home Depot for lumber.  Of course, they didn't have all the things we needed, so dh ran to Lowe's the next morning and picked up the rest of the stuff.  He loved that it gave him the excuse to buy that air compressor that he has been dying for an excuse to get.  Apparently, it's was a win-win all around.  lol

Before Pic- Dh with a stack of wood and his new air compressor.

A clue!  A Clue!  Walter added his own mark to the headboard after digging in the flowerbed.

Footboard ready to be primed and painted.

Headboard and footboard primed, painted, and ready to go!

Assembling the side rails and slats.  We didn't like our bed frame that we had so we did this part.  Inspired us to make shelves for our garage since they were the perfect size.  But that's another project.  lol


And here is the final result.  We made a few mistakes along the way, so it's not quite exactly to the specs on the plans for the Farmhouse bed, but we were able to figure it out, and we love it.  The mattress is 32 inches from the floor, so it's much higher up than I anticipated, but we love it.  The room is eventually going to be painted a blue color when I can decide on just the right one.

The best part of this project was the price tag.  This bed is based off of one from Pottery Barn that is over $1300.  For the price of all the wood (solid wood, no particle board or mdf whatsoever), screws, brads, primer, paint, wood filler and glue, and sandpaper, it was just shy of $200.  We did spend more, because we had to buy the air compressor and brad gun ($200).  This is a tool that we have been wanting for a long time since we plan on adding trim around the house, and various other projects, so it was a well place investment.  We already had a cordless drill, miter saw, circular saw, carpenter's square ($10), and paint brushes, etc.  I imagine that you could build it with a hammer and finishing nails instead of the brads, but it would definitely take longer, and you take the chance of splitting the wood.

Next up are some nightstands that we are going to be designing our own version from a very expensive one that we like online, but aren't willing to spend $800 a piece on.  They will go very well with our bed. I'm so excited.  They won't be exact, but it will be similar.  The sides of the nightstand really reflect back to the headboard and footboard details of the bed.

Then it's our son's bed.  It's been so much fun.  It's so much fun to be able to build things from scratch and know that it's exactly what you want.  It's also so much better quality than some of the cheap stuff that is sold that falls apart so quickly.  Or bed weighs a TON!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Simple Woman's Daybook

Outside my window... the sun is starting to go down.  I'm looking at the overgrown weed patch that was once a garden, but did not do well with all the heat this summer.  Dh has been so busy with school that he hasn't had the time to hack it down yet.

I am thinking... that all I see right now are the frames while wearing my new glasses.  These are going to take some getting used to.  lol  They are black and on the inside they are white with black polka dots.  I love polka dots, but am thinking that these might be too much of a distraction.  

I am thankful for... my wonderful husband that offered to run out and get some dinner when he saw that I was a bit stressed today, and what I had planned just was not working out well.  I love that man!  

From the learning rooms... we are continuing on.   Dd has been doing school for the past month.  I am so happy that she is loving her new math curriculum and she is making such progress already.  Her mental math has improved remarkably and if she continues at this rate, she'll be done with this before Christmas and will be on the next grade level in January.  We LOVE Teaching Textbooks.   Wish I would have bought them last year.

From the kitchen... we were working on puff pastry pizza, but when the pastry defrosted it managed to stick to itself like glue.  Dh went and picked us up some Chinese.  So, we had Chinese and pizza, and have plenty of leftovers for tomorrow night as well.  

I am wearing... blue shorts and a red tank top.  It is sooooo hot here.  We have been slammed with 100+ weather for the past 3 weeks.  I've been doing a lot of house work, so we don't want to be wearing the nice clothes while scrubbing the bathroom floor.  lol  Really wish I could find some nice house dresses though.

I am creating... some homemade cloth bread bags, place mats, and napkins.  I bake a lot of bread for my dh to take with him to work, and I'm trying to create some more reusable options.  While I'm not entirely on the whole green bandwagon, I do like to re-purpose what I can or find ways to not spend additional money on items.

I am going... nowhere.  We are in for the evening.  We just returned from Walmart where dh, dd, and I picked up our new glasses.  Ds was along for the ride.  :)

I am reading... several books.  I am continuing reading The Spark, a great book based on sparkpeople.com.  I have lost over 10 pounds since starting.  Diary of a Wimpy Kid with dd (one of the first books she's really wanted to read for recreation), and a few others that I'm just not able to come up with at the moment.  Lots of homeschool curriculum that I am mapping out for planning the year.

I am hoping... that this weekend dh and I will be working on my new bed.  We found a great website that has plans for beds and lots of other furniture and they are all easy to build.  Dh says he is going to make me a farmhouse bed.  I am so excited.

I am hearing... the washer and dryer running.  Ds is talking to our dog, and dd is laughing while watching iCarly.  Dh is playing his video game online with his dad.  A nice way to wrap up the evening.

Around the house... I see lots of jobs that I want to get done that just haven't been getting done.  It's been a little crazy around here, and the house is showing it.  I'm getting vamped for a fall cleaning.  Can't wait.

One of my favorite things... is hearing my kids laugh.  It's the best sound in the world.  

A few plans for the rest of the week:  Homeschooling, fixing the garbage disposal, and more decluttering.  It doesn't sound glamorous, but I love it!

Here is picture for thought I am sharing...
Jacob the Shark
Jacob has a huge interest in sharks right now.  This is his shark face.  :)  
I just love it!


Friday, July 9, 2010

Vacation? What Vacation?

It's been a busy week around here.  A few months ago we were planning on going on a family vacation after July 4th, but dh resumed his coursework for his bachelors degree.  So, our plans changed and we decided to have a staycation.  Dh does all his schooling on the computer through the internet, but he has to have a reliable connection, etc, so we didn't want to take any chances by venturing from home. 

What started with plans to do a few day trips during his time off, quickly became getting jobs done around the house that have been put off for soooo long.  While it might not sound nearly as fun or glamourous as the cruise we took back in December, or our trip to New Mexico to visit friends last summer, we are pleased by what has been accomplished. 

The weekend through Monday involved dh writing 4 papers and taking a final exam.  Needless to say, we didn't do much, but we went out to dinner locally, and had fun as a family watching a few movies.  It's been so hot here and the humidity has made things just miserable to really go out and do things.  On Saturday afternoon, I went to the movies and saw Eclipse.  Can't tell you how excited I was about that.  It was soooo fun.  Can't wait to see it again.  (The books are still much better though.)

Finally, on Tuesday, dh had some things he had to do for work, so he went his way, and I took the kiddos into Dallas and went shopping for my nephew's birthday.  It was fun to get out of the house, and into some civilization.  I love where we live, but it can be frustrating when you want to go somewhere other than Walmart.  Found a couple of great toys for him, and dd bought herself a new video game for her nintendo ds.  She loves using her allowance for new games.

Wednesday, we tackled a project that we have been wanting to do for I can't even say how long.  Dh and I spent the afternoon in the garage.  We have a generous 2 car garage and we couldn't fit any cars in it.  When we moved into our house, we went from 2200 sq ft to 1550.  Obviously, we couldn't fit all of our stuff in the house, so boxes were stacked in the garage.  So, between that and the fact that anytime we want to get something more often than not, we order it online, we had stacks and stacks of cardboard.  It was insane.  The garage is dh's domain.  We went through everything.  We now have things together and sorted so we can have a garage sale in a couple of weeks, and have managed to get my mini-van in the garage along with dh's motorcycle.  Hopefully after the garage sale, we'll have room for dh's car as well.  

I wish I took pics, but I didn't.  Dh and I spent about an hour burning huge piles of cardboard in the firepit.  There was just too much to get the garbage man to take, and they weren't in any condition for people to reuse, and they don't have a recycling center here.  So, we had a bonfire.  Ha!  Yes, the backyard does have a large area that looks like a meteor hit, but it's so nice to have that done.

Oh, and dh also finished grouting my new backsplash.  It looks beautiful and he did a wonderful job.  We have our nephew's birthday party tomorrow afternoon, and dh goes back to work on Monday.  We'll have finished a lot around here, but  now we might need a vacation from our vacation.  :)

Monday, June 28, 2010

What Can You Get Done in 15 Minutes?

I can't believe it's already been a month since I blogged.  June has flown by.  My son and daughter were visiting their grandparents for 2 weeks.  Well, my son lasted 4 days, but that was pretty good for his first time gone from home.  He is only 3.  My daughter came home on Saturday.  It's so nice having the whole family back home.  It's just too quiet around here without them, even with a 5 month old chocolate lab.  Ha!

I have also aged a year.  :)  I turned 31 back on Thursday.  My wonderful husband is installing the backsplash in the kitchen that I have been wanting since we moved into this house about 18 months ago.  He's almost done.  He has one more section to finish grouting, and then I can move in and clean up the rest of the mess and reassemble my kitchen.  It's halfway back together.

It's been soooo hot that you just don't feel like getting much done.  I love to cook and bake, but we're doing a lot of crock pot meals and grilling outside to keep the heat out of the house.  I'm even behind on laundry since having the dryer going all day will just heat up the house even more.  I would love to hang a line outside, but of course, you can't have a permanent one in our neighborhood, and my portable one is just a bit too rickety for the time being.  Plus, I can just imagine home many times I will have to pick the clothes off the ground after Walter (lab) goes and attacks the clothes flapping in the non-existent breeze.  :)

I was sitting here after lunch, and was reading over my emails.  I was looking over a flylady email and it reminded me to set my timer for 15 minutes and get busy.  What?  I can't just sit here???  That kitchen isn't going to clean up itself?  Surely it's going to take me forever to make it semi-presentable.   Oh, alright, let's set the timer and give it a go.  I do a lot of the flylady stuff, but never mess with a timer.  Take a look, and see if it was worth it yourself.  You might feel the inspiration to set your oven/microwave timer like I did too. 


(Pay no attention to the spackle and tools on the counter.  Have to leave those for dh)

                                         (I forgot to take an after of the table, but it's clean too)



(Thanks for the gorgeous backsplash honey!  Love it!)

(Normally the kitchen utensils and salt and pepper caddy should be on the right side)

(Had time to brew a pot of iced tea)

(More grouting materials in the right sink, but the left one is clean)

So, there you have it.  Do you have 15 minutes?  In mine, I unloaded and reloaded the dishwasher, cleaned the counters, picked up loose things that needed to be removed from the kitchen, cleared the kitchen table, made some iced tea, wiped down the stove and microwave, and took out the trash.  Now can someone come do my laundry???  :P

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Still Going Strong!

I was talking to an acquaintance and she was telling me how much she is dreading the summer coming.  Her kiddo will be home from school for almost 3 months.  What????  I could hardly believe my ears.  I don't remember my mom ever thinking that and there were 4 of us.  Yes, we attended public school, but summer meant being able to go on family vacation and spending time together.  Worst part of it was she was dead serious.  Yes, I have met several moms over the past couple of years that consider their child(ren) to be an accessory when it suits them and an inconvenience pretty much the rest of the time.  No wonder her kiddo likes visiting us.  I have a feeling we'll have another "child" this summer.  :) No complaints here, the more the merrier.

We homeschool here.  My 10 year old daughter, while knowing that it is summer, continues to do school.  Not every day.  Maybe 2 or 3 times a week.  She'll also be having some time off to go on vacation with her grandparents, and she'll be spending some long weekends with them.  They love having the company, and she enjoys the opportunity of being spoiled.  (Who wouldn't?  lol)

Why do we homeschool year round?  It enables us to take breaks while others are in school.  We are able to take advantage of off-season specials when we go on trips.  We are not bound by the traditional calender.  We love it.  It also makes it possible for us to take breaks when dh is off on a holiday weekend, etc.  We love taking longer weekends when we can. 

Another biggie is we live in Texas.  We will quickly be approaching triple digits in the next month or so.  It is just too hot to run around like a banshee outside.  Kids aren't really out playing all day long.  More so in the morning and in the evening.  So if we aren't out and about, or playing with the neighbor kids, we pretty much stick to our usual schedule. 

Our plans for this summer aren't very ambitious.  We are going to keep up on reading and practicing our math.  It really does make a huge difference and we don't have to spend the first month or so reviewing what we forget over the summer.  Dh is also in school, so we can't venture too far from home.  We'll spend time playing in the pool we plan on getting for the backyard.  We'll do some crafts, and my daughter is just dying to start cooking and adding to her responsibilities around the home.  This will be the perfect time to start that with her. 

What are you looking forward to doing this summer?  It will be here before you know it!  :)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


Welcome to my blog.  I'm very new to this blogging thing, so if you stumble on this, I ask you for your grace as I figure out exactly how to work this thing.  I have such ideas, and am excited to have an outlet.  I just hope and pray that I can help and encourage fellow wives and mothers in a way that others have been so willing to help me in the past and present.  :)

First, I want to say that while I am directing this blog towards wives and/or stay at home moms, that I believe that we all can use some help in finding ways to make our homes more productive and homey.  I would like to share information that I have found out in the past 12 years that looking back, if I had know even a quarter of it, I know not only would I have benefited from it, but so would my family.

I married my husband when I was just a few months over 18 years old.  He was the only man that I dated while in high school, and despite my parents desires for me to go to college, become a doctor, and who knows what else, I just knew that I had to marry this man.  :)  Of course, looking back, I understand what my parents wanted for me, especially taking in the fact that my daughter is now 10 years old, and how quickly I could be facing the same prospect with her.  I believed back then, much like every 18 year old just chomping at the bit to break away from home to become their own person, that I knew all I had to maintain a home with my husband.  I grew up in a family of 4 children, and I was the oldest.  Needless to say, I had a crash course in domestics from a very early age, and I was the resident unpaid babysitter.  Little did I know, when I got married that I was fleeing that environment, only to be thrust into the very thing I was fleeing.

My husband was in the navy.  We were married just over 6 months, when he was deployed for 6 months.  More than half of the marriages in the navy end in divorce.  I am pleased, that while we had several ups and downs, our marriage survived those 5 years with countless deployments.  We have now been married 12 and a half years.  We have endured the same problems that others have, but we have kept our focus on God, and He has seen us through.  We now have 2 children.  A 10 year old daughter, Kathryn, and a 3 year old son, Jacob.  They give us such joy, and we thank God for entrusting us with them.  We rejoice in knowing that they were created and given to us because we are the perfect parents for them.  Not perfect in that we do no wrong, but perfect in that we are the parents that are who they need to grow and become what God has called them to be.  How amazing is it to know that we are just a piece in a much bigger part of God's wonderful plan for us all.

My husband has always been supportive of me staying home and taking care of our house and children.  He grew up in a very dysfunctional family that struggled for as long as he can remember.  He remembers spending his childhood in daycare, his parents working multiple jobs, and much of his memories of his youth are not exactly happy.  He had seen terrible things that most would agree that no child should have to see.  So, it was really a struggle for him to have a desire to get married and have a family.  Obviously, God had other plans for him.  While it took us a few years, we both finally came to the same understanding of what God wants our family to look like.   He wanted me to work in the beginning, which was fine when he was out to sea, but when he was in port, he wanted me to be home for him.  Understandable, but it was a pain.  I preferred to stay home all the time, but I didn't want to do the housework.  I'm not sure if it was just me rebelling against it all since I had already spent half my life running a house.  Finally, God took hold after many many arguments, and hasn't let go.

I now willingly care for my home.  While I may not like every little job that I have to do (I still HATE laundry), I  do so with a happy heart because I know that I am caring for my family.  I love knowing that I am able to be home waiting for my husband to come home to a home cooked meal after a long day at work.  He enjoys his role as provider and while isn't always happy with his job, is thankful that he has it, and is able to care for his wife and children.  We are now content in our family.  We have put God as the head of this family and He has made our paths straight.

Are there days where I just don't want to do the housework?  Of course.  Are there days that I don't do things?  Of course.  We all need breaks.  My husband has off on the weekends, and I think it's okay for a wife to take a day off as well.  Weekends are my time with my entire family.  Not just me and the kiddos.  I may not do laundry on the weekend.  The dishes may not get done right away.  It's okay.

Now, I've been rambling, but I really wanted to share a bit of testimony of what the Lord has done with us.  I pray the same for my readers.  God is good, and He can do amazing things in your families too.  One of the ways I have found to really enjoy my "job" is to find things that interest me.  Too often, housewives are considered to be boring and worthless.  It is quite the opposite.  We wear many hats.  We are maids, cooks, plumbers, repairmen, secretaries, business managers, babysitter/daycare workers, teachers, nurses/doctors, and the list goes on and on.  As a housewife, we have more variety in our jobs than we could ever get working outside the home.  I love to find ways to do things cheaply at home.  While I'm not always successful, I have found several ways that work for me.  I plan to use this blog to share those ideas as well.  I hope my readers will also comment and share their ideas as well.

I want to eventually have a homeschooling section, cooking section, household ideas, etc.  Like I said in the beginning, please bear with me for a bit.  There's a learning curve on this and I'm doing this to challenge myself.  I haven't figured everything out yet.  So, in the meantime, I'm excited to be starting this new endeavor.  I hope you enjoy your visit.  I hope you will save me to your favorites and come back.  I'm really looking forward to this.  Thanks for reading.  :)