Category Archives: Dog

PomPom Curtains for a Nursery


February of last year, I started to style a little girl’s nursery, and in October of the same year, that little girl stole my heart. G1 and I were so excited to be adding a G3 to our clan and wanted to give her a bright energy filled room to encourage her creativity! We chose a yellow IKEA rug as our base. It has just the amount of movement and color that we needed. Everything else sort of revolved around that rug.

We had quite a few IKEA Vivian curtains on hand. These are a go-to curtain and work wonderfully in any room. I love to use what I have so we mounted the curtains and loved (like always) the light filtering through. Even as a novice parent, I knew I would have to eventually line them with blackout fabric, but more on that another time. Let’s just enjoy the light.

White IKEA Curtains

White IKEA CurtainsArcher even approves. I am always a little concerned when he smiles with his teeth showing- who taught him that?

Always a helpy-helperton!

Always a helpy-helperton!


I used one of my favorite sources, ETSY, to find some pom-pom trim. I was so happy with MODERN CLOTH’S Etsy shop and it turned out she’s located here in Washington, too. BONUS! She was great to work with, even digging in her own personal stash and making a custom order from the supplier. She has a great selection of fabric and notions. Long story short, I ended up with 25 yards of baby pom-poms in tangerine. They were perfect!

Easy peasy to apply. Line the trim on the side of your curtain and sew on top.

Orange Pom-Pom Trim Curtain


Orange Pom-Pom Trim Curtain

Orange Pom-Pom Trim CurtainThanks for looking!


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Combing Jars

I wanted to share a quick update of how we store our dog food. How exciting!


Our dog is fed twice a day, so we were looking for a convenient location for his food. We quickly discovered that we didn’t have room for the bag of kibble (Taste of the Wild) and the box of dehydrated dog food (from The Honest Kitchen) on the counter and I definitely dislike reaching my hand to the bottom of the bag of food . So, we decided to put the food in jars and place it in an easily accessible location: the counter.


I’m not entirely sure why I did this in the first place, as I do not like counter clutter, but it was incredibly easy to feed the dog this way. After realizing I would rather have a clean counter, I made room for the jars on the built-in shelf in our kitchen, conveniently under the rest of the jars! We had already placed a jar of treats there and figured adding two additional food jars made sense.



I gathered two more similar jars and filled one with dry kibble and the other with dehydrated dog food and placed them in their new home next to the treats.20140205-182806.jpg

There you have it, a quick clean up of counter clutter and an all-in-one dog feeding station. 20140205-182833.jpg

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Chalkboard Plaque {Don’t believe me, ask the dishes!}

Plaque Turtorial

I’m pretty sure you can buy these sorts of plaques at any craft store or if you aren’t as crafty but you are a bit thrifty, I found mine at Goodwillys.

I was immediately drawn to it because it looked a lot like a disney character. Do you see it, too? Without hesitation, I bought the plaque and then quickly put it in my craft box until I was ready for it. I ended up ‘being ready’ for it 8 months later. It just so happened that I needed a chalk board. I put 2 and 2 together and decided to craft myself a chalkboard plaque.

I finished the project within 2 hours including drying time between layers of chalk paint. Here’s how I did it.

Using a Clorox bleach wipe, I wiped the entire plaque to reveal its glory.

Plaque Before

The sun was out in Seattle, so Archer and I took advantage of this by completing our entire project outside in the yard.

Plaque Archer

Are you awarding me with that? It’s not gold.

Using my orbital sander, I began sanding the top of the plaque to remove the veneer. I didn’t sand the edge of the plaque as I thought it gave it a Made Men look. They wouldn’t use chalk, I know, but they would like that I was using something that designates achievement.

Plaque Sanding

I was able to completely remove the veneer by sanding. After doing so, I used another Clorox wipe and washed off all of the sanding debris.

Plaque Sanding Finished

Are you beginning to see which Disney character this looks like? Hint: “This is yet another example of the late neoclassic Baroque period. And, as I always say, “If it’s not Baroque, don’t fix it!”

I used painters tape to tape around the top surface. This was a bit tricky, as the face, er, the plaque surface had angled edges. It took a lot of tape maneuvering and tearing.

Plaque Taped for Painting

Using an old bottle of chalkboard spray paint, I did as I’ve been told to do by every can of spray paint, ever.

Light, even strokes and let it dry in between coats.

Chalkboard Spraypaint

After the first coat:
Plaque Chalkdboard Paint Layers

And after the 5th coat I peeled away the painters tape to reveal my perfect chalkboard plaque.

Plaque Finshed

I hung it in the kitchen where we tend to do most of our documenting: shopping lists, to-do lists, recipes, menus, etc.

Plaque Finished Close - up

Have you guessed which Disney character I am referring to, yet?

If you are like me and immediately saw Cogsworth from The Beauty and The Beast, then you, too, are amazing!

Naturally, G1 and I took turns drawing on our best Cogsworth face. I went first….

Plaque Candice

Cogsworth according to G2
“[singing] Well, perhaps there’s something there that wasn’t there before.”

And G2 took it to the next level. He can do no wrong to Cogsworth.

Plaque Patrick

Cogsworth according to G1:
“Well, there’s the usual things: flowers… chocolates… promises you don’t intend to keep… “

We love having Gaston in our kitchen, servicing us like the true Beauty and the Beast that we are.


…A tale as old as time….

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Organizing A Dump Zone After Moving

MovingInDumpZoneThe boxes that once held our home have been slashed and broken down to flat, lifeless, 2D objects yet the items they once held are still making a big impact in our life. Our goal was to unload all the boxes – no problem (except the two boxes that still sit in the office; those are a problem). All the  boxes are empty and the bonus? everything is piling up in the kitchen on a shelf that came with the house. I’m pretty sure that all of it is piled up here because it’s on it’s way downstairs, but someone didn’t have the enthusiasm to actually take it downstairs.

For some reason, and I blame it on living in tiny apartments until now, we will avoid any task that involves up going upstairs or downstairs. The laundry is downstairs and our bedroom is upstairs. We may have bought a few more laundry baskets to try and do laundry less and our room may be the only place in the house where we haven’t done any actual moving-in.

I recently read The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin  where she made a ‘rule’ to do anything that doesn’t take more than a minute to do. For us, that means taking the laundry downstairs, putting our shoes in the closet, hanging our jackets instead of throwing them over the couch, and filling up the Brita pitcher with water before we put it back in the fridge. All these little things, when left undone, can create a bit of chaos so we started using the one minute roll as well. Everywhere except the shelf in the kitchen! Time for a new goal : Organize the kitchen dump zone, where everything that doesn’t have a designated home (or belongs in the basement) lands.

MessyClutterBothThe shelf in the kitchen came from the basement and belongs to the home’s owner and since we were desperate for counter space we brought it up to tie us over.  It had collected the fruit bowl, dinner plates that don’t fit in the cupboard, a box of lightbulbs, a tool box and drill, and a lovely hydrangea that is waiting to be planted.

First thing I did was take the dreaded descent into the basement. I gathered all the tools and lightbulbs and general ‘garage stuff’and took it downstairs where it belongs. I then vowed to implement the ‘one minute rule’ to make sure that this tool pile-up didn’t happen again.

And just like that, I had my shelf back.

ShelfStage1It was a breath of fresh air. And then it was a very long exhale as I realized that the shelf seemed unwarranted, and that I needed to make it useful. I had been wanting to move the coffee machine and accessories off of our counter to make more space, so I decided to make a coffee station on the shelf.


Now we’re talking. I liked that I was able to bring all of the coffee supplies together and free up some space on the kitchen counters. Was I in love with it? No, but it was much better than where it started  so I decided to move onto the built-in hutch.


At least the hutch wasn’t full of tools. There were a few things that gathered that didn’t belong: two spice racks from Ikea, vases, a flashlight, and doggy-doo-doo bags. So as I did with the shelf, I took everything away that didn’t belong.


The plates that used to be on the shelf fit nicely on the hutch but looked a little out of place, so I added the rest of our collection. I added the vintage radio for a splash of color and my ‘deer’ friend for a bit of decor. The jar on the bottom is the most important as it is home to a variety of dog treats and we all know that a happy dog is a happy home.

HutchDetailI bought the cracker jars at Wal-mart and found the labels at World Market. The style of labels on the right were pre-printed  and the jar on the left is a chalkboard label. Did I mention that World Market is quickly becoming my favorite store?




I was happy with my progress thus far. I had a nice organized hutch and a coffee station shelf. Buuuuuuuuuut, I didn’t really love the shelf.

So, I brought in it’s replacement:

HutchandShelfFinalThe Ikea shoe cabinet. This cabinet is amazing! The drawers pull towards you and you can slide in your shoes. We haven’t really found a great place for it in our house where we can actually use it as a shoe cabinet, so I was happy to bring it in and replace the shelf. It seemed to fit perfectly; both the white color and the size.


My sister-in-law came over and came up with the brilliant idea to put wine bottles in the cabinets.


Now that I was content with that corner of the kitchen, I only had one corner left: the butcher block.


I quickly tidied up the butcher block corner of the kitchen by hanging the knife magnet and adding a picture.


The cook books found a home on the bottom shelf of the kitchen cart.



And Archer found a home right in front of my camera.



The entire dump-zone organization wasn’t as awful as I imagined it to be. It really consisted of taking everything that didn’t belong in the kitchen away and then re-situating what did belong until I liked what I saw.


There is a list accumulating with projects that I want to complete in the kitchen including paint and add curtains.

I’ll keep you posted on any other updates!

Waiting to Move

Last Friday we found out we were approved for our favorite apartment! We have been so happy and excited, imagining life in a bigger place and in a new neighborhood! The apartment is officially ours beginning March 1st, but we won’t move until we get back from Hawaii (eek!) the second week in March. We are expecting a mad-crazy-intense move all in one weekend – can’t wait.

Since we found out, we have been discussing our decorating and arrangement options as well as how excited our dog is going to be with a yard.  We will have a room dedicated to an office. Currently our kitchen/living room/entry-way also share a room with our office. We have been dealing with the combo for nearly 4 years, so I’m a little over-whelmed with all the possibilities!

Our new home will also have an extra bedroom! This is an entirely new idea to us. We have always (and we aren’t proud of this) had our guests sleep on the couch or on an inflatable mattress. What makes it worse is that we are living it up in a queen size bed while they do so. We can’t wait to have a guest room!

We started painting the interior of our shelf-turned-hutch a brilliant white. To demonstrate how great it is working in a small apartment I have included a picture of how we make it work. I line the counters with plastic and then use that area to paint. If you have the will, there is a way.


Our work-bench

But, hey, it works and we have a basement and a yard to look forward to in the next month!

While I had the white paint out, I decided to give a deer antler a coast of paint.

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Shine bright like a white paint.

I was given the antlers from a friend in Montana who found them on his ranch. And when I say he found them, I mean they were still attached to the skull and they were still wearing a bit of fur. This meant that I had to take on the task of de-robing the deer as well as detaching the antlers. I’ll have to get back to that story another time.

The antlers turned out quite nice. I had previously bleached them to try and get them white but wasn’t able to get them the shade of white I desired. The paint did a great job of masking the antler’s flaws and cheering it up.

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White paint + Antler = BFF

I ended up painting a piece of particle board white that I had also acquired in Montana.When I made my JOY sign, my FIL gave me an additional piece of board as I intended to make my own JOY sign. Since that never came into fruition, I have been holding onto it waiting for a great project. I thought I would paint it white to give it a nice base and also because once I get the paint out, I go a little over-board. I won’t include it in this post, but I might have also painted the legs on a bench. ho-hum.

In another demonstration of how great it is to work in a small apartment, I have placed the particle board on top of my work-bench (er, dog crate) to paint it. I don’t mind as much as G1 does. I know it’s only temporary and that after I’m done I can clean up my supplies and put everything away, but its a little stressful for someone who isn’t partaking in the paint-madness.

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Particle board gone white.

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So fresh and so white.

I then taped off the inside of the hutch so the back panel would remain untouched and began painting the interior – you guessed it – white !

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White interior of hutch.

After the painting was done, we let everything dry and got ready for the Superbowl!

With the excitement of our new home, we have had quite a busy week. Of course the Superbowl came and went. We enjoyed that by wearing any form of jersey we had available. Mine was a hand-me-down from my dearest friend. She acquired the BL jersey while working at a restaurant. I was rooting for the Ravens and G1 was rooting for the Niners.

Go Ravens!

Go Ravens!

Thank goodness the Ravens won, despite the Niner’s attempt at shutting off the lights, because we placed a friendly bet on the game. If the Niner’s won, G1 would have had me be in charge of cleaning out the kennel (a job that has thus far been reserved for him) for a month. If the Ravens won, I would have had G2 be the person who gets out of bed at night to do the silly things we forget.

For example: G2- Did you turn off the heater?  G2 – Shoooooot. I forgot.    G2 – No dibs.    G1: But you’re closer.    G2: Ravens.   G1: (shuffles out of bed and turns off the heater in silence while cursing the Niners)

Thank you Ravens!

We gave our puppy Archer all the attention he had been waiting for all week. He is incredibly happy when he knows we are staying home for a couple days over the weekend and we shower him with love, and full body hugs.

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Is it Monday yet?

We were also able to register one of our cars in WA. We are hoping this will lead to an immediate decline in the number of road-rage response incidents we experience as a direct result of our MT license plates. I am being completely honest when I tell you that I witnessed a guy give me the bird in his rear-view mirror as well as pound his fist repeatedly at me after I merged in front of him on an off-ramp. pft.

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If you can’t beat them, join them.

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