Adventures in Decorating...

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"The painters are like magicians!" I concur, Big Brother!  They are indeed!  And these magicians transformed our house with a wave of their magic brushes.  The morning we closed on our new home, Bo and Ramon were already waiting on the front porch, ready to tackle this big job of painting... everything.

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It is always said that "the easiest way to makeover a room is with paint".  True. In theory.  Not so much when there is more pine in a home than there are walls.

Before

Baby Girl and I had a blast putting together our and color pallet.  I'm not so sure the painters were quite as thrilled when they saw my design board.

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The Brothers and I smoothed things over with weekly treats; Jimmy Johns, homemade cookies, and my Dad often stopped by with surprises for the contractors too!  They were, after all, magicians.   First, they began by sanding every inch of trim, door, cabinet, mule post, hand rail, you get the idea.  We pulled up the old 1986 carpet to help speed the process.  Then came primer, and then the paint.

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The Brothers and Baby Girl and I came to the house every day to marvel at the progress.  And little by little the pieces of cocoon fell away, and the transformation was revealed.

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And then... I became obsessed with painting anything I could get my hands on.  Brick, air vents, old vases, brass, even bar stools from Target weren't safe.  I was often seen aimlessly wandering the house with a can of Rustoleum Oil-Rubbed Bronze in my hand, hunting for my next victim.

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The kids had fun new activities, like... sanding and priming.

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A little leftover paint and some fun distressing transformed these $15 Target bar stools...

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Then I locked myself in the pantry to paint it.  Literally.  They were installing carpet and kept walking by with roll after roll of materials.  So, I spent my afternoon in a tiny little closet full of sticky August air and paint fumes.  Totally healthy, I'm sure.

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It was a whirlwind summer!  We would actually grow bored if we weren't expecting the carpenter, plumber, electrician, carpet guys, granite guys, painters, or anyone from Lowes.  It was quite the adventure.  Common things heard echoing through these halls... "How are we going to fit the oven in? We are going to have to cut that granite!"

"Why are you closing the garage door on the minivan?"

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"How many men does it take to move a concrete block onto a trailer?"

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"Ummmm, why doesn't the dryer even turn on?  It's brand new right?"

"You expect me to poop in this bathroom?  There isn't even a door!  What kind of house did you and Daddy buy?"

Never dull.  Always fun!  And, always an adventure in progress...

Trending Today...

Recovering from Spring Break... 20140418-073403.jpg

Super heroes watching Mickey Mouse...

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Thinking of excuses why I don't need to unpack #3 out of 4 suitcases.

Getting ready for Easter.  See an easy and FREE Easter decorating idea here!

Working hard in the office...

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Yes folks, this is my office.  It also used to be known as a family room.  Now it is a recreation of the beach, according to some toddlers.

What's trending in your nest today?

Decorating For St. Patrick's Day

Top 'O the Mornin!  St. Patrick's Day is highly celebrated and under-decorated.  Growing up in an Irish family, I have always loved March 17 for its tradition, fun, beer, and c'mon, everyone looks great in green! Here are some of my favorite simple decorating ideas for St. Paddy's Day...

Pin up St. Patrick's Day cards, pins, and  kids' artwork!

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A few assorted beer glasses with green water and a floating candle make an easy and inexpensive display..

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SPD2

SPD2

St. Patrick's Day in a ball jar!  Fill a jar with gold coins and cute green hats(available at Michaels)

SPD3

SPD3

SPD4

SPD4

Festive signs from the $1 section at Target on the front door...

SPD5

SPD5

No St. Paddy's Day is complete without some real beer...in a cupcake!  This recipe is delicious and leaves some leftover Guinness that just can't be wasted.  I found this on www.partypeopleblog.com last year and have promised my son that my fingers will not get caught in the mixer again this time.  That was before I drank the Guinness BTW.

Guinness Cupcakes with Bailey's Irish Icing

-For the Cupcakes-

1 bottle Guinness

1 cup(2 sticks) unsalted butter

3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

2/3 cup sour cream

Baking Temperature:  350 degrees

Baking Time:  17 minutes

Makes 24 Yummy Cupcakes

1.  In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt.  Set aside.

2.  Bring Guinness and butter to a simmer in a large saucepan over medium heat.

3.  Add cocoa powder and whisk until mixture is smooth.  Cool slightly

4.  Using electric mixer, beat eggs and sour cream in a large bowl.

5.  Add Guinness-chocolate mixture to egg mixture and beat until just combined.

6.  Add flour mixture and beat on slow speed.

7.  Fold batter until completely combined.

8.  Fill cupcake liners, 2/3 to 3/4 full.  Bake until toothpick comes out clean, about 17 minutes.  Cool completely on a rack before icing.

-For the Frosting-

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

3 to 4 cups confectioners sugar

3 tablespoons Bailey's Irish Cream

1 tablespoon milk

1.  Place the butter in a large bowl and beat until creamy.

2.  Gradually add the sugar, one cup at a time, beating well (about 2 minutes) after each cup until a good consistency is reached.

3.  Add Bailey's and milk until just combined.

Ice, decorate with sprinkles or a shamrock, and enjoy!!!!

Erin Go Braugh!!!

Decorating For St. Patrick's Day

Top 'O the Mornin!  St. Patrick's Day is highly celebrated and under-decorated.  Growing up in an Irish family, I have always loved March 17 for its tradition, fun, and c'mon, everyone looks great in green! Here are some of my favorite simple decorating ideas for St. Paddy's Day...

Pin up St. Patrick's Day cards, pins, and  kids' artwork!

20130314-130119.jpg

A few assorted beer glasses with green water and a floating candle make an easy and inexpensive display..

20130314-130301.jpgSPD2

St. Patrick's Day in a ball jar!  Fill a jar with gold coins and cute green hats(available at Michaels)

SPD3SPD4

Festive signs from the $1 section at Target on the front door...

SPD5

No St. Paddy's Day is complete without some real beer...in a cupcake!  This recipe is delicious and leaves some leftover Guinness that just can't be wasted.  I found this on www.partypeopleblog.com last year and have promised my son that my fingers will not get caught in the mixer again this time.  That was before I drank the Guinness BTW.

Guinness Cupcakes with Bailey's Irish Icing

-For the Cupcakes-

1 bottle Guinness

1 cup(2 sticks) unsalted butter

3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

2/3 cup sour cream

Baking Temperature:  350 degrees

Baking Time:  17 minutes

Makes 24 Yummy Cupcakes

1.  In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt.  Set aside.

2.  Bring Guinness and butter to a simmer in a large saucepan over medium heat.

3.  Add cocoa powder and whisk until mixture is smooth.  Cool slightly

4.  Using electric mixer, beat eggs and sour cream in a large bowl.

5.  Add Guinness-chocolate mixture to egg mixture and beat until just combined.

6.  Add flour mixture and beat on slow speed.

7.  Fold batter until completely combined.

8.  Fill cupcake liners, 2/3 to 3/4 full.  Bake until toothpick comes out clean, about 17 minutes.  Cool completely on a rack before icing.

-For the Frosting-

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

3 to 4 cups confectioners sugar

3 tablespoons Bailey's Irish Cream

1 tablespoon milk

1.  Place the butter in a large bowl and beat until creamy.

2.  Gradually add the sugar, one cup at a time, beating well (about 2 minutes) after each cup until a good consistency is reached.

3.  Add Bailey's and milk until just combined.

Ice, decorate with sprinkles or a shamrock, and enjoy!!!!

Erin Go Braugh!!!