DIY

Weekend Wrap Up: Lots of Sanding and A Little Bit of Crawfish

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This weekend was a weekend of I’m not really sure where the time went or what all got done. I guess technically we did lose an hour, but even still…

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I’d hoped to finish up some projects this weekend that just weren’t moving along as expected. Lots of lots of sanding went down and I think the sanding part might finally be done. And let’s be real, kids need things so it’s not like these things ever get my full attention for too long. Here’s a visual of what we’re working on. I’m sanding and staining multiple projects at a time because they’ll all get stained the same color and it seems like the easiest way to control having them all look the same. Sometimes I just eyeball the stain mixture and don’t actually measure so… yeah. The picture ledge will get painted the same white as the shiplap, but the rest of these are getting stained.

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I feel like the frames for the mirrors are going to take our bathrooms to a whole new level and I’m really excited about it. Our master bathroom especially is in major need of a transformation and paint and framing the mirrors seem like the biggest bang for our buck. We’ve also got some inexpensive light fixtures from Lowe’s that will be mounted into the header portion of the frame. The top of the frame is a 1x10 and the rest of the frame is going to be made out of 1x4s.

I painted a couple of accent walls black (one in our bathroom and one in the office). I don’t regret it, but admittedly I do regret the sheen. Before we can finish and install the floating shelves, I have to head back to Home Depot for more paint. I went with an eggshell by mistake thinking that was what we used for our outdoor kitchen, but the outdoor kitchen is a satin. I think I may purchase a matte this go around. I did try to sand down the sheen because I saw something on the internet that said I could, but our texture is too heavy for this idea to work so back to painting I go.

Saturday evening we attended a random crawfish boil at our home builder’s house. Two years later he and Tyler still keep in touch even though we were a tough customer. The picture below is all the kids (except Corbin) and their big hearts letting the last two crawfish go. Saida is there on the left cautiously watching the release go down. She was curious, but not interested in getting anywhere near those pinchers.

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Pinterest Fail: Detangling Barbie Hair

Bottom line, those moms who’ve tried this successfully must be full of magic or BS.

So if you have a daughter or daughters, chances are you've looked detangling barbie hair up on Pinterest before.  These things get totally out of control and our barbie loving selves from another era really want to make this barbie hair look amazing again.  

Saida asked if we could fix Rapunzel's hair today and I was like sure thing.  We can make a blog post about it.  Of course when this was going through my head I was thinking we'd have super amazing results and every girl mom out there would be visiting this post because hair is important and barbie deserves good hair too.  

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So anyway, here's how this really went down.

First of all I only looked through half the pinterst post initially so I was only prepared for the first half of the process.  

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Also Rapunzel has a mark on her head that I was super sure a magic eraser would take off.  Those things really are magic so I didn't thing for a second it wouldn't work.  Guess what.  I didn't work.

We dipped Rapunzel's hair in a mixture of half fabric softener and half water as suggested and make the hair was good an saturated.  From there we brushed her hair to get all the "tangles" out. and I brushed and I brushed and I brushed and I brushed and I brushed..... for like 20 minutes y'all.  Maybe longer actually.  So at this point I'm like this is a total pinterst fail, but I'm just going to keep going because I've been brushing barbie hair for 20 minutes and I'll be damned if I'm throwing in the towel at this point.  

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What if by some miracle this actually does end up working?  I'm not sure it matters because even though I'm committed at this point, I'm definitely not recommending this method to any other mom unless of course they've hurt one of my children at some point in life.

So this is where I thought we'd be done and then just let her hair dry and voila.  Nope.  Second half of the process required rinsing hair in a water/vinegar mixture to get the extra fabric softener out then combing the hair again using some sort of leave in conditioner.  Natural we chose our Monat Junior Detangler.  

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It's looking better, but I wouldn't say it's looking good.  Bottom line, those moms who've tried this successfully must be full of magic or BS.  On the up side, Rapunzel smells amazing now.  

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Just buy a new barbie y'all.  

P.S. The Monat Junior Line is a much bigger hit on my kids hair than their barbies.

 

Fixer Upper Style For My Windows on the Cheap

Ask me who I'd like to be right now and my asnwer is probably Joanna Gaines minus a few kids because let's be real, two is enough for me.  

An episode of Fixer Upper from season 2 is my inspiration for our latest home improvement project.  I always wanted to do this in our old house, but life never really allowed or rather, we didn't make time.  

See that wood header piece above the window?  I wanted something like that on our otherwise boring windows.

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We don't have curtains for a couple of reasons.  1. Tyler hates them and 2. his allergies are terrible.  Curtains are just one more thing that collect dust and as cute as they are, we've just opted not to do them mostly (I actually have a pair in the dining room and Saida's room).  But this means my windows were so not cool and so boring and weren't really contributing anything to our home in terms of style or character.  Not to mention our home is a brand new home void of much in the way of character to begin with.  So I decided to do this simpliest version of this idea that I could think of.  

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So this was literally as simple as buying wood, cutting it to size, staining it, and screwing it to the wall.  There really isn't anything special about the wood we bought.  I didn't even poly it.  I was really just thinking how do I do this as cheap as possible with as little work as possible and still get something I think looks really cool.  

Next on the list for this room is a rug and maybe a large house plant. 

Side note:  Why are rugs so expensive?  Where do I find an affordable one that doesn't suck? And how do I know how big of one to buy?  I suck at rugs.

OKAY LET'S BREAK DOWN HOW TO DO THIS

STEP ONE: Measure your windows.

In my personal opinion you have two options here.  One is to have a piece of wood for each window and the other is to do like I did here and have a piece of wood for each set of windows.  I measured window sill edge to window sill edge because I wanted a little bit of overhang and that just made sense to me as a simple way to decide on a measurement.

Once I had all my measurements, I took into account how long the boards are at Lowe's and started figuring out how many window treatments I could get per board.

STEP TWO: Family Trip to Lowe's 

Get however many boards you've determined you need.  I'm pretty sure ours are 1x8s, but really you can just get whatever fits the look you're going for.

Wood Stain.  I used a combo of Minwax Weathered Oak and Early American.  1 part Weathered Oak and 3 parts Early American.  I also found a sponge next to the stain that I used to apply the stain once mixed.

Screws - We used black sheetrock screws just because I like to accent with black and it goes with what's happening in our home.  Make sure you buy something that isn't too long, but is going to go through whatever board you choose and still be able to secure to the wall. 

Drop Cloths - Depending on where you plan to do the staining of the wood, I'd definitely invest in a drop cloth or something to protect the floor of wherever the staining is happening.

Sand paper - we used a pretty fine sand paper

STEP THREE: Cut and sand the wood

The cutting part was Tyler's job.  I gave him measurements and told him which pieces were supposed to come out of each board and he went for it.

The sanding is really just so the wood will take the stain and you can remove any sharp edges.  I sanded off all sharp edges of my boards because that's the look I wanted.  I took a wet cloth to my boards afterwards just to remove some of the dust.  Sanding as many boards as I had took forever so I stopped for the day and came back to stain another day.

STEP FOUR: Stain the wood

Again I mixed one part Weathered Oak to three parts Early American and then generously applied the stain with a sponge to one board at a time going with the grain of the wood.  I let it sit for about 7 minutes and wiped it away with the grain of the wood.  I love how the knots in the wood absorbed more stain and really gave the wood some character.

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STEP FIVE: Find a really cute young thing to do the install for you.

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Just kidding.  But for real though, this could take a couple people depending on how much space you're covering.  We got ours lined up the way we wanted them, made sure they were level, and that we were screwing into a stud.  We also mounted ours down just enough to cover the mechanical part of the blinds.

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And that was it.  Now we have Fixer Upper worthy windows instead of ugly builder windows for way less than traditional window treatments would have ever cost.

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