Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Most Popular DIY Posts of 2014

Wow, a new year is upon us already! 

Sometimes it feels like I've been posting and blog mingling for years, but I can't believe I started just over a year ago.  Thanks to all of my readers and friends during 2014, I've obtained goals and planned new ones. 

It's been fun and sometimes challenging, transforming furniture pieces and repurposing items into new life. It's been so exciting to be able to create and share that I can't imagine doing anything else.  When readers appreciate my posts and share thoughts and ideas with me, the entire process is quite rewarding! It seems as though our DIY community has become one big family. I can't wait to see what we do together in the next year! 

Before we enter 2015, here are the top ten viewed posts over this year: 

 Number 10 (tie): Upcycled Footstool 
A cute little footstool that became upcycled with paint and recycled belts. Super easy and fun project!

Number 10 (tie): 
 70's Coffee Table went Southwest
I loved turning this topless coffee table into a southwestern piece with pallet wood. The turquoise color and wood distressing went well together.

Number 9: 
Thrift Store and Road Rescue Outdoor Furniture Redos
Some road rescue and thrift store finds became new makeovers for our patio and decks.

Number 8: Cut the Cord Part 2, Solar Lighting 
Several regular indoor and outdoor light fixtures became solarized by cutting cords and using some waterproofing with a little creativity.

Number 7: Coffee Table Repurposed into Kitchen Island 
Our former coffee table became repurposed when I built a base for it and turned it into a kitchen island. 

Number 6: Updated Brass Chandelier 

A thrift store score! An outdated brass lamp got a makeover to use in our "antiquish" dining room. 

Number 5: Topless End Tables Redo

A pair of thrift shop end tables were a bargain because they were missing glass tops. Using craft paper, I made faux leather tops to add them to our livingroom. 

Number 4: Trash to Treasure Spa Tub Redo 

This Craigslist find was a freebie. I used bondo to repair the leak problem and gave it a paint job while hubby added the new tub siding. 

Number 3: Junkyard Step Chair Redo 

Looking for a fender for my truck, hubby brought me this vintage step chair from a junkyard. After I finished sanding and painting it, I added a thrift shop faux leather skirt and some belts to get this new industrial look for only... $11.00 ! 

Number 2: Thrift Store Toy Horse Upcycled into a Garden Sculpture

A mangled hair and mane plastic toy horse was a blast to make into an outdoor garden sculpture. As it appears to be cast iron, but underneath the paint job,  it is a toy with plaster of paris and exterior caulking.

And the number one viewed is:  
Repurposed Treadle Sewing Machine Base. 

A badly damaged sewing machine became utilized by using the base for an upcycled table. (The other parts went to a recent treadle machine repair.) 

My own favorite of the year: 

Roadside rescue table. I loved how it turned out and of course, the color. 

Being amazed at everyone's interest and delighted with all of the kind comments, I'm so grateful and looking forward to sharing 2015 with you.

Thank you for a wonderful 2014! 

Happy New Year! 

Christmas 2014: The After Christmas Tour

The after Christmas Tour... really it is!  

To me it's still Thanksgiving and Christmas until New Year's day. It just seems to be the most special time of year when we are most thankful.

If I could, I'd decorate for Christmas during Thanksgiving week. I'd add new little handmade touches every chance I could right up until New Year's day. Loving the feel of all three holidays wrapped up into a long joyful season and allowing the house to show it. I used to. Until this year.

Things were a bit too busy since September. I went from many projects and events right up to surgery yesterday that was postponed since Christmas Eve. (a blessing, I was able to make my son's Holiday Chorus Concert) So I did what I could... the week of Christmas. My latest decorating yet.  And, I only put out a few areas. With that, I didn't have time for a Christmas tour until now. Better late than never! Brace yourself for this year's reality show.

In the living room; the tree. Not what it usually is. We went with red bulbs and gold stars this year. The rest of the good stuff stayed packed. My son and I decided to go simple... and really really fast! I had projects and shopping to do and he had his friends' and his dad's fun stuff to do. (Boys!)

So, the windows got candles and lights.

Moving to the next room, you must stop and see Britta's tree. It's her second one in two months. We have to construct an indoor playland and a tree is best.  She shreds them. I'm thinking of putting her to work on my bark removal projects.

(She says, "Hello", as my son walks by and fluffs her feathers.)

But at least it's decorated with her toys! (The newspaper mess on the floor is what she played with ten minutes ago.)

We did get festive and used gift wrap for under her play area.

Moving on...

This guy always stands guard at the corner of the fireplace each year.  I love woodland Santas. Especially if they are two feet tall and size appropriate for my dachshund. He is my animal Santa. Bet he is the one who puts treats in our pets' stockings.

"Did he bring me this new squeaky toy, Mom?" 

And now we have empty stockings. (It's after Christmas, remember) The things that were on the mantel before decorating are shoved into the fireplace. Ha! And no dusting. I'll be un-decorating soon, so why bother with proper packing and unpacking. The mantel is kind of thrown together. No rhyme or reason, just favorite stuff.

Stuff like this plastic dollar store deer stocking holder. It looks pretty with the lights behind it.  And it looks like it is adoring the resin tree it's staring at.

Then there is my favorite elf. My youngest son bought it for me a few years ago. I love the mini hammer in the apron. This little guy just makes me smile. I think we have so much in common, so he is my buddy. 

Ah, and here we all have a Polar Express mug and a "Believe" bell. Just a reminder to each of us.

Now these cast iron nutcracker stocking holders have been with me since my grown sons were little. They always sit on the Christmas mantel. Always. Except for one time when I filled one with too much and it fell on my foot.

A mantel size Santa with snowshoes is a must for this household. I adore the birdhouse he carries through our mini mantel woodland. I placed him next to another dollar store deer stocking holder that broke off. So he looks like he is snowshoeing through some snow. That was clever; at least I thought so. Maybe nobody noticed that last week.

So this is where you can see the fireplace is situated in our dining room. The dining room that I'm trying to make very antiquish looking. With Britta taking up a quarter of it. With my 10 old chairs and farm table.

It's decked out with grocery store plants and opened up napkin place mats. A first time for everything, I always say.  The lavender tree is surrounded by a poinsettia wreath. Not bad for a throw together, ey?  The picks in the tree are actually a fast cut with wire cutters from a bunch of fake berries in my stash. Again, not too shabby.

My decorating window trademark:  Hanging three red bulbs in every window is my thing each year. What you can't see is that they are shorter again this year (it happens every few years) because the golden decorative ropes are turning into stringy shreds at the top. I cut them and tied them onto a pushpin at the top of the window frame. At least they got hung up.

And of course each window sill gets a lit candle with red lights floating around it.

How about the kitchen? That will be fast. I promise.

A laser cut woodland scene in the window at my kitchen sink and a pretty gift package that my mom gave me. It makes me happy when I have to scrub pots and pans.  It reminds me of Bob Ross painting and telling me these are happy trees... Be happy you have pots and pans. And my mom in my head... "There are starving children in this world that would love those brussels sprouts!" 

My French kitchen hen gets decked out with greeting cards. 

A dollar store decoration I put together last year greets you at the put-your-keys-down-place near the front door.

The door bell. Can you believe it's been there since last year? It has. I forgot to pack it and left it there. Glad I did!  It lets me know when my youngest slips out without telling me all year long.

Let's go on outside now. 
The roses and berries door wreath. Yup, you're looking at it correctly. Still all squashed right out of the bag of outdoor decorations. I didn't have time to fluff it. And it's crooked. 

Wow, that wreath is WAY crooked. And some of the lights are out. Good thing I can check for clearance racks now.

At least I put up the evergreen garland and lights. But the usual landscaping lights didn't get up. I do that the weekend after Thanksgiving but we had a snowstorm, and another and another. When it warmed up just before Christmas, I was way too busy to do it.

But I did do this one in the rain the day before Christmas Eve. 

The holiday greeting sled got put out the early part of Christmas week! Winner, winner, chicken dinner! 

I did buy a motion detective cardinal and stuck it on a little evergreen hangy thing at the entrance light. Yay, me! Something new and creative this year!  It chirps every time you enter and leave without being annoying. And look at that, this is the first time I really looked at that light since summer with mosquitoes and moths around it. (I should clean it now.) 

Now that we are at the door, thank you for stopping by my hectic Christmas season that almost wasn't. It was just a fast approached holiday season this year and we were all too busy. Know in my heart, it was Thanksgiving, Christmas and, now, New Years that I'm very grateful for who and what I have. Whether I did or did not do my usual decorating, the spirit of Christmas lives in each of us in some way; hopefully everyday. Love, Peace and Goodwill onto others.

I wish everyone a very happy and prosperous New Year! 

PS: I promise to do much better next year by planning and working harder and faster. First resolution of many for 2015.


Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Retro Re-pin Party #23

Thank you all so much for linking up to our last party!
Hope you like the five links I have featured...  

A Glistening Moravian Star

by Stacey at 
The Farmhouse in the Field 

Free to Chic Dining Room Table

by Shanice at

DIY Wood Stars

by Shonee at 

Pineapple Upside Down Cake

by Nicole at
Family Table Treasures 

Housekeeping Binder 2015

by Betsy at

Be sure to grab your "Featured Pin" from Redo It Yourself Inspirations! Check the other hostesses to see if you were featured with them too! 

grab button for Redo It Yourself Inspirations
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  Thank you for sharing with us!

Now, Welcome to the Retro Re-pin Party #23!

This is the fun new party where you link up your Pinterest pins and have them re-pinned! Link up your old or new pins - we don't care we just love to pin!! Thank you for coming to re-pin with us!

Our updated button! If you want one, take a button. Stephanie made these for us and we would love to see them scattered around the web!

2 Crochet Hooks

Meet your Retro Repin hostesses! With such awesome hostesses on 8 blogs, that's 8 times the exposure for your pin!  If you love to pin and want to join us, leave a note or send an email, we would be glad to have you!

Time to meet your hostesses!! Please consider following each on at least one social media to keep up with our news!

Kristina and Millie @ 2 Crochet Hooks: Blog/Pinterest

Dee @ Meatloaf and Melodrama: Blog/Pinterest

Stephanie @ Sustaining the Powers: Blog/Pinterest

Felicia @ Nifty Thrifty Family: Blog/Pinterest

Leslie @ Crafty Side of Sarcasm: Blog/Pinterest

Julie V. @ Somebody's Dinner: Blog/Pinterest

Robin @ Redo It Yourself Inspirations: Blog/Pinterest

Deb @ Mommy Crusader & Her Knights & Ladies: Blog/Pinterest

We would love if you would follow our Retro Re-pin Board!

*~* Are you all ready to party?!? *~*

Note: By linking up to this party, you give the hostesses permission to share your posts via social media with links back to the original source. If you have entered an email address into the link up too, an email may be sent when the party goes live. Your email will not be used in any other way.