Creating an Outdoor Theater

Outdoor Theater

A guest post from my friend Wanda –

We had a family reunion at my cousin’s house. For the evening entertainment, she had an outdoor theater for the kids (also well enjoyed by the adults). Soon thereafter my brother, Jim, took this idea and then created his own outdoor theater and, as always, he took it to a whole new level.


Jim has a patio area with a large fire pit, so you can continue to enjoy the outdoor theater on cool summer nights and also in late spring and early fall. You get yourself setup in a nice chair, maybe even with a light blanket, a good drink and some popcorn and you are set!

Find Your Decorating Inspiration

decorating inspiration

A guest post from my friend Wanda

How do you find your decorating inspiration?  I like such a variety of decor that sometimes it is hard to lock myself into one style. Because of this, whenever I do a decorating project or small renovation, it causes me much anxiety because I want it to be “right” for who I am. What I mean by this is sometimes you are attracted to something, but yet you know it isn’t “you.” Like that funky shirt you bought that in the end wasn’t your style, but you saw someone else wearing it and it looked good on them but not so much on you. It is the “dream” of what you would like to be, but it really isn’t “you.”

Okay, if you don’t know what I’m talking about then good for you. This means you are solid in who you are and have always had a steady sense of style. For me, instead of dreaming up my own decor, I really find what I am attracted to outside of my home. What I have discovered is I like nature-type things, because I am ALWAYS attracted to sticks, stones and overall what is known as “earthy.” Although, I like the sophisticated look of white and clean, I find that, by and by, I like my earth tones as that is what I am always taking pictures of outside of my home!

Glass Jars, Gotta Love Them!

Glass Jars

A guest post from my friend Wanda

Looking for a quick and easy way to decorate? Look to glass jars to fill your need. What makes them fun is that you can change them with the seasons or to add holiday flair. I also like to fill them with other items such as candy, although if you have younger kids like me, you do tend to find candy wrappers around the house and it can be irritating.

If you watch for sales, most often you can get a glass jar for around $25 or less. I usually purchase my glass jars at Hobby Lobby as they routinely run sales for 50% off and you can get them fairly inexpensively.

Decorating with Sticks – Decorating Ideas

Decorating with sticks

When looking for decorating ideas, I like to use items from nature with sticks being at the top on the list. Yes, I like decorating with sticks!  I have used them quite a bit in my own home decorating. It must be in my blood as my father likes to do woodworking as a hobby and he has made items for my house such a coat rack and a bench. I certainly am no woodworker, but I do enjoy the finished products.

Belle’s New Room

Danielle's Room Before

Belle’s New Room Before

My son Michael moved out of the house back in September.  Belle had been waiting for that day for a long time.  With his departure she got to move into his long awaited room 🙂

Before she could move in though, we had a lot to do.  The carpet was original to when we built the house (20 years) and was blue.  The blue was nice for a little boy, but after 20 years of A LOT of wear and tear it was definitely time to replace it.

My goal for the room was:

  1. Tear up and replace the carpet
  2. Paint the walls
  3. Give the room a thorough cleaning (woodwork, vents, etc)
  4. Decorate the room according to Belle’s wishes

Unfortunately the before picture really doesn’t show all the decorations that were up.  Michael’s room was always WAY to messy to take any pictures of it.  As you can tell however, it had an Americana theme going.

Since we were also turning Belle’s old room into an office I decided to make it easy on us and choose the same paint color and carpet for both rooms.  We decided to go with a Valspar color called Arid Plains in both rooms.  Belle and I both agreed that we liked the color.

I like to keep the carpets neutral ( I learned that lesson after we put in the blue carpet in Michael’s room and white in my bedroom)  so I settled for a light beige in both rooms.  By shopping around I was able to get an awesome deal and could afford to do both rooms at once.  To keep costs down I had planned to only re-carpet Michael’s room, leaving the office with the original carpet.

Belle didn’t need any new furniture, however she did need new bedding.  After a lot of shopping and some stressful moments, we found a bedding set she liked at Macy’s.  Unfortunately the bedspread didn’t have a matching bedskirt or window treatments to go along with it.  As you’ll notice in the after picture, both of those are still missing.  We did hit a good Martha Stewart sale at Macy’s so I got quite a deal on the sheet set.

The only thing left to do is finish up the walls.  Belle wanted to keep her room very simple so we’re just going to go with some collage frames and hang a bunch of pictures of her and her friends on the wall.  No complaining from this momma 🙂

Danielle's Room Before

Belle’s Room Before


Belle's New Room After - We still need some pictures on the walls!

Belle’s New Room After – We still need some pictures on the walls!


Belle's New Room - Before_WWIN

Desk & Vanity - After_WWIN

Belle's Original Room - Quite the change!

Belle’s Original Room – Quite the change!


As you can see, the room isn’t quite done but pretty close.  She’s very happy to have a lot more space and I’m happy that so far it hasn’t gotten messy enough that I can’t leave the door open!





Front Porch Decoration – Summer

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I love decorating my front porch for the different seasons.  For some reason fall has always been my easiest season to decorate.  Last year I decided I needed to up the game for summer and Christmas.

I believe that the front of your house really sets the tone for your home.  Unfortunely last year I realized that my home was really setting the wrong tone.  Somehow I had blinders over my eyes as to how sad my summer display was really getting.

  1. First step was to clean the front porch off.  I swept the porch well and washed down the house.
  2. The next step was fixing up the glider you see.  Here is the post I wrote about Salvaging the Porch Glider.  Since all the hard work was done last fall I needed to do this spring was to do a quick touch up of the stain.
  3. To give the porch the homey look I wanted I decided to add some artwork.  I picked this up at Target and hung it with a Command Hook.


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         4.  You can’t have a homey look without a new door mat from JoAnn Fabrics

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5.  Or pillows from Target

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6.  Last came the flowers.  Every year I filled the flower pot with flowers but it still felt like the porch was naked.  This year I decided to use my Christmas present to a local garden shop to by myself a hibiscus.  The fullness really added the “pop” I was looking for.

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In the flower pot I planted a spike, red geraniums, pansies and vinca vine.  By mid summer this will fill in nicely and be very full.

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Sometimes I don’t always achieve the look I want the first time.  When I was looking for pillows and artwork I started at JoAnn Fabrics because I had a coupon.  I found some pillows and artwork that I liked but was different from my usual decorating style.  I thought I’d “step outside the box” but didn’t quite achieve the look I was hoping for.


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I returned the pillow and artwork and bought the other stuff.  I’m quite happy with the results!

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Do you decorate your porch for the seasons?

2013 Decorating/Organizing Goals

Ever since I started my organizational journey a couple of years ago, I like to start the year with a concrete list of projects I’d like to tackle in the coming year.  The list usually comprises a variety of organizing and decorating projects.  You know, the things you keep putting off due to lack of time and money.

Most of our decor has been updated but there are a few maintenance issues that we need to do that I’ll be adding to the list.  I shared in an earlier post how I fared with my 2012 goals, there were some items that I didn’t get accomplished that I’m planning on putting on the list for 2013 also.

12 Decorating Projects for 2012 – Year End Wrap Up

At the beginning of 2012 I decided on 12 decorating/organizing projects I wanted to accomplish this year.  I like to make lists because it gives me focus, a road map for what I want to accomplish.  The areas were chosen based on how badly they irritated me, feasibility of accomplishing and how much I wanted to get them done.

Well, it’s the moment of truth when I hold myself up to my goals to find out how well I did.  Let’s see how I did.

Front Porch Decorating – Final Results

I’ve shared with you some of the specifics of my porch decorations, I thought it was time to share with you the other aspects of the decorations and show you the final results.

Determining exactly what I wanted took a little bit of time but once I had everything worked out it really didn’t take long to put together.  When taking everything down after the holidays I store them all together in a tote marked “Front Porch”, this allows me to easily put everything up the following year.