Tutorials & DIY

Vintage Fruit Crate “Cart”

One of my favorite “time wasters” is perusing Instagram and lusting over gorgeous photos of farmhouse decor in inspiring homes… think Joanna Gaines and her ilk. I get so many ideas and so much inspiration for our own home, but the thing I always wonder is, where is all these people’s STUFF?? Because if your family is like mine, there are shoes and socks tossed on the floor inside the front door, piles of mail on the entry table/ counter and a cabinet full of DVDs in family room, none of which are cute OR inspiring. We are a REAL family and we have STUFF, which doesn’t keep me from TRYING to have a cute or inspiring home.  I am just trying to find places that might look cuter to keep our stuff.

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Not too long ago I spotted a post by one of my fav Instagrammers, Donna of FunkyJunkInteriors, who had repurposed some old wooden crates into a neat little “cart” of sorts to serve as a side table in her living room. I immediately thought of the PILE of vintage fruit crates I insisted we move (twice) because “they are cool and I can do something with them,” AND the unsightly pile of cookbooks I inherited from my Mother, that has been sort of haphazardly sitting in a weird space in our family room until I could figure out what to do with them. LIGHT BULB MOMENT!! I could make my own cart to store the cookbooks, it would be functional and cute and fit with our farmhouse decor! I ran the idea by my hubby who was immediately on board, (I think he envisioned a few of those crates leaving his work space) and we headed to the hardware store for supplies.

I scrubbed the crates with mild soapy water and the jet attachment of our hose and left them to dry in the sun. One dry I gave them a coat of poly sealer to bring out the pretty wood and make them easily wipeable. Once they dried it was as easy as screwing the crates one on top of the other and attaching casters to the bottom. I chose rubber all direction casters so it would roll easily and not scratch up our wood floor any worse than it already is. We chose to add a piece of barn wood (cut to seize) to the bottom to reinforce the bottom and really give the caster screws something to hold onto.

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And voila!! A cute little cart ready to hold cookbooks!!

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This is only a FRACTION of the cookbooks I inherited.. there are larger ones on a bookcase and I forced myself to really PURGE to what I thought we would use. I love how it turned out and how handy it is. I think I will make another one for the art studio. Where would you use this?

CrateCart
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Parenting

Why I support my daughter walking out of school…

On Wednesday, March 14 there is scheduled to be a national school walk outnot only in remembrance of the 17 shooting victims from Parkland, FL, but also as a call to action for Congress to pass tighter gun control laws.

We have discussed this issue with our teenage daughter many times over the past couple of weeks. Discussions have ranged from anxiety-fueled to calm. How do you convince your kid that they will be SAFE at school when you can’t be 100% sure? All we can do as parents is outline that the school has acknowledged the possibility of violence, and has prepared with drills and has a police officer on campus. How do you make your child feel secure and in control when they clearly are NOT??

I feel the walk out will give these kids, most of whom are too young to vote, A VOICE. This will be an opportunity to unite with other like-minded kids, raise their voices against gun violence, and demand better control from Congress. In this nationwide “protest”, these kids (and parents, teachers and administrators) will hopefully demonstrate their demand for SAFE EDUCATIONAL SPACES. This is the perfect way for students to show that.

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In addition to raising their voices, my hope for students, is that in coming together for these 17 minutes, it will be a powerful way to FEEL and express their emotions of fear, sadness, anger, strength, and to realize that they ARE NOT ALONE.

  • I just received an email from our principal stating that they are aware that many students on our high school campus plan to participate in this Nationwide School Walkout, and while they promote academic pursuits, they also recognize the need for student-led civic engagement and social emotional needs. My understanding is that students will be supported in a brief walk out as long as it remains peaceful and on campus. Yes!

For more info on the Nationwide School Walkout:

http://abcnews.go.com/US/national-school-walkout-march-14/story?id=53531886

https://www.cnn.com/2018/03/11/us/national-school-walkout-march-14/index.html

 

Parenting

We’re all in this together

This may not be a very PC post but my mama bear heart is bursting at the seams with too many emotions.

Yesterday a 12 year old boy in a neighboring city took a knife to school and stabbed another 12 year old boy. A few days ago my friend’s daughter’s school was placed in lock down when the office received a threat. Only days before that, another friend’s daughter was in her high school which was locked down for 2.5 hours because of threats found scrawled on a note. Things like this are happening DAILY across the nation. Kids are picking up weapons and taking them to school.. something is WRONG here and its not JUST lack of gun control.

I don’t want to get into the topic of gun control.. I am not anti-gun, but I am not anti-gun control either. Its a tough issue, but I think this issue with school shootings, violence and bullying boils down to something else…

WHAT happened to PARENTING??

IMG_0167Times have changed a lot from when I was in high school. I believe that parenting is harder now that ever because social media and digital devices allow our kids to be in touch with the world, the community and each other 24/7. If we as parents aren’t sticking our noses into their business, we aren’t doing our jobs. You can’t escape any newspaper or news site without SOME headline about school violence lately and so often the parents had NO CLUE about what was going on. Kids do NOT have any right to privacy, I’m sorry.. but they don’t. Maybe they can EARN a certain amount of privacy but as a parent we HAVE to know what is going on with them and their friends.

I’m sure many disagree with this. Heck, I KNOW many of my daughter’s “friends” parents don’t agree or don’t care, because I really don’t think their kids would act the way they do if the parents had a CLUE as to what their kids posted online. Our daughter knows that as long as we pay for the cell phone, we can access it ANY TIME. Likewise her computer, tablet, bedroom, etc. Have I gone into her room and nosed around, hell yes! Do I read texts and look at her Instagram feed? You betcha!  WHY? Because I want to know what is going on in her life…

Does she resent this? Maybe a little. But here’s the thing..  because she knows I might look at any time (and have) she TALKS to us. Maybe too much. LOL.. I laugh because I don’t really need to hear every little bit of gossip and drama going on between “A & B”, but she doesn’t hide stuff. Her friends still think I’m a cool Mom and they all talk in front of me.. even about the embarrassing stuff, the sad stuff and the scary stuff.

So, I think this is the starting point. We (society) need to stop worrying about being our kids friends and PARENT them. We need to not be concerned if our kid is mad at our decision or hate our rules, but be concerned with teaching our kids to be KIND, compassionate people. To be self confident and helpful and GOOD citizens. We need to teach boys that girls are equals and we need to teach girls that they deserve to be treated as such. We need to empower our kids to succeed and help them if they are reaching out for help, and we need to not be afraid to ask for and offer HELP when we see a child is struggling. And if someone is showing any kind of warning signals.. for god’s sake.. SAY SOMETHING!! Don’t wait.. we’re all in this together!

Brush & Barnwood

happenings…

I’ve been a little quiet over here. I have SO MUCH going inside my head but some hasn’t really seemed like the right stuff to blog about. That may change, but right now, lots of emotional, unresolved feelings swirling around. There is a post draft that poured out with a ton of tears but I need to feel a little stronger to go back to that one.
Behind the scenes stuff IS happening..

I’ve been painting up a storm and working through that pile of great reclaimed wood scraps I got from a friend. It was a nice, not too windy day the other day so I took advantage of the sun to get outside and seal and add hangers to a bunch ff painted pieces. As you can see, my supervisor was sleeping on the job.

In addition, I tackled a couple of BIG To Do items from my list that I just haven’t had time to do. My main VA client is away on a trip, leaving me some “me” time so I FINALLY ordered a stamp and BUSINESS cards! I feel so legit, and they shipped today! Yay! You’ll have to get one to see the back.. ha ha!!

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OK, short and sweet, but back to work!! I need to photograph some signs!!