Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Painted Wood Floor Makeover!

In 1913, cheese cost 17 cents a pound, a Hershey Bar would set you back 3 cents, McDonald's did not exist, the zipper was invented, and my house was built.
When we purchased our home in 2005, it had new carpet in the dinning room.  It served us well until babies 1...2.... and 3 came along, then we knew we NEEDED a change.

Hidden under the Koolaid sodden carpet, was a hard wood floor nearly a century old.
 The wood floor was stained two feet around the perimeter of the room, the center of the floor had never been stained.  Originally the center of the floor probably had a carpet.  Where the floor was stained the it well preserved, and the wood was light. However, in the center the wood was dark, because it had not been preserved.

We knew we wanted to do something different, the adjacent family room we refinished the floor, and we wanted to make the dinning room look a little different.  We decided to add a stencil!  After much consideration we decided to create a large diamond pattern on the floor.  I practiced first with newspapers.

 Items Used (all of these items can be found at the Hardware store!)
      Large Drum Belt Sander Rental 
      Sandpaper for the Belt Sander 
      Sandpaper for our palm sander
      Fine grit hand sandpaper
      Painters tape
      High quality paint brushes
      Plastic doorway coverings
      Oil based paint (We used a granit brown color)
      Polyurethane


a. The first step was to move Carpet, carpet tack, and carpet Staples. 

b. Next we Sand, Sand, Sand, and sand some more!  We used both a belt sander (rented), and a palm Sander.  My husband was best at the big belt sander, I used the palm sander to sand around the perimeter of the room.  

After sanding we complete we sealed the floor by putting two coats of polyurethane on the entire floor.  Then we were ready for tape.

(Pythagorean Theorem)

c. Painting the diamonds on the floor was quite the process involving a lot of math, you can tell your teenager, yes you might use the Pythagorean theorem someday! You need to get a general idea of the diamond size you would like, but remember you need the length of the diamond from point to point or the hypotenuse (that is when the The Pythagorean Theorem comes in handy).  My husband and I drew it out on a paper, then used a chalk line to create the pattern on the floor.  The chalk lines gave me a guide to tape the floor.
 When taping your floors a putty knife is very helpful to cut your tape cleanly.  I was on my hands and knees taping the floors for THREE hours.  The diamond pattern disguises the dark light contrast around the perimeter of the room (see tape picture 'c' above).  I put tape on the diamonds I was NOT going to paint, so I didn't paint them on accident:)
d.  Now that all of the prep is done, take a deep breath and start painting!  It is important that you use oil based paint, so it does not gum up, or come off easily.  This was my first project using oil based paint, and I am here to tell you that it is a lot like painting tar!  I only used one coat of oil based paint, that is all it needed.  After letting the oil based paint settle for over 24 hours, I applied two more coats of polyurethane on top of the diamonds.  In between each coat of polyurethane, I sanded just a little with high grit sand paper.  Tip, when painting polyurethane make sure you buy a HIGH quality paint brush, that way the bristles will not end up on your floor.


I love how the diamond pattern defines the dining room space from the adjoining family room.  Not to mention it helps create the funky vintage soda fountain look I am going for!

This project was a lot of work, but I LOVE how it turned out!  This floor has personality, lots of character, and it is easy to clean!
  The cost of the floor was $321.73, or $1.43 per square foot.

 One more time... Before...


And After!  Oh the stories this old wood floor could tell!
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Monday, February 27, 2012

Showing YOU off!

Before I show you off, I wanted to show something off I received in the mail!
Ladybird Ln
Do you remember Last month when I had my NOVICA giveaway? They were gracious enough to give me a $50 gift certificate, and my order from them has arrived!  Every item purchased at Novica is hand wrapped in wrap according to the country.
My package came from Peru! The gift wrap makes it extra special!

 Isn't my Nativity Scene incredible? The workman ship is really unbelievable.... I have it up even though Christmas is still a few months away:)  I have worked with several companies here on Ladybird Ln, and NOVICA has absolutely been my favorite, they go the extra mile.  If you are looking for a unique gift that will be treasured please check NOVICA out! 

P.S. totally not getting paid to say this, I just wanted to share:)  Enough about me, lets get on with the features!

It is that hard time of year, I like to call in these parts MUD!  Everything has a brownish tinge, and I need some sunshine!
Isn't this Sunshine care package so much fun from The Brown Eyes Have it!  I love the bright yellow, sure to brighten up the end of Winter blues!
I have always really loved quiet books, and have kind of admired them... from a far, because I know the work that goes into them!  Isn't this farm page from Adventures of Our Family darling?  My only question is where is the turkey? Lol.
It is that time of year again... Dr. Suess's birthday! Isn't this Cat Hat from the Tattered Tag fun? We had Mom's and Muffins at our school this morning were we read books with our kids, and ate ridiculously fattening (But very Yummy) Muffins!
Speaking of muffins, look at these delicious Muffins from Talking Dollar and Scents!

And the blog of the week this week is Lucky Linky #75!

My Judy the Foodie, made some Kale chips... Is it bad to admit I have never had Kale?  Well maybe she will convert me as blog of the week, congratulations!!

If you were featured feel free to grab a featured button on my right sidebar!


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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Weekend Show Off Party!

Woohoo, it is finally the week (okay, almost)

Ladybird Ln

I am almost done with 2 big graphic design projects I have been working on, so I am pretty excited.

I am also excited to introduce you to a blog, Tales of the T's, I just found this blog this week, they are newer blog, and they have some great tips and delicious recipes!

TALES OF THE T'S

Thank you so much Carlee for featuring Tales of the T's! We invite you to enjoy the tales of our life together as we document our adventures in the kitchen and around the house. We inspire to make it a fun, educational, and humorous, take on who we are and what we love to do as a couple! We have a passion for food, love hosting our friends and family as well as taking on house projects.

Some of our Favorite Recipes & Projects

As you can tell from our Parmesan & Parsley Crostini post, we love cheese. And this is one of our all-time favorite cheese lover dishes, Bacon and Cheese Hashbrown Casserole.


If you are looking for vegetables, we have plenty of healthy and flavorful vegetarian main dishes and sides, like our Roasted Beet with Wilted Greens Salad.


We do love our coffee, so one day decided to make it even more of a treat with a Peanut Butter & Chocolate Chip Biscotti.


In case you need a little more warmth than a cup of coffee, we found an easy and inexpensive way to the heat in and the cold out, by stopping drafty doors.



What a great feature, thank you so much, go visit the Tales of the T's, and be inspired!



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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Easy Red Velvet Cookies!

So it is no secret, I have been finding lots of inspiration on Pinterest lately (who hasn't?)!  I found these Red Velvet Cookies from Peace of Cake a while back, and decided to give them a try.  I can safely say after making two batches of these, that they are AMAZING, and EASY, and so so DELICIOUS!


Red Velvet Cookies! 

8oz. (1 brick) Cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 c. Butter, softened (1 stick)
1 egg
1 t. Vanilla
1 (18-ounce) box red velvet cake mix
Powdered sugar, for rolling/dusting


Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Cream the cream cheese and butter until smooth. I used my Kitchenaid.
3. Beat in egg, then the vanilla.
4. Beat in the cake mix.
5. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours to firm up.
6. Roll batter into tablespoon-sized balls and then roll them in powdered sugar.
7. Place on ungreased cookie sheet, 2 inches apart. Bake 10-12 minutes. The cookies will remain soft and "gooey." Cool completely and you  can sprinkle with more confectioners' sugar, if desired.

ENJOY!
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Weekend Show Off Features!

This weeks Party had me craving milk and cookies!
My buddy Adrienne, from Happy Hour Projects, made these fancy dipped oreo cookies!  I was amazed to see how simple and inexpensive it was!

Not to be outdone, the Purplest Pecalin made Oreo Truffles, they look fabulous, and it only takes 3 ingredients!


Finally Joliluja, shared some FANTASTIC looking Cookie Dough Fudge!  Did I mention I was on a diet?

And the blog of the week, chosen via Random.org is number 67!


Tales of the T's made this decadent Parmesan and Parsley Crustini, Congratulations!

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Friday, February 17, 2012

Weekend Show Off Party

Welcome to the Weekend!
Ladybird Ln
I am sorry about getting this up late. 

I have a sob story...  I have had so much trouble with my computer this week.  At times it will go so slow it will not even let me on to my email.  It is mainly google based sites I am having trouble with, it says that it temporarily disconnecting from the server... So I was thinking I needed to clear a cache, or disable a cookie... No luck there.  I could not even check my email most days this week.  The simple posts I wrote this week, should have taking me about 30 minutes, instead it took almost an hour per picture (arrgghh).  But then sometimes it works just fine, go figure.

Then (don't tell him this)  My husband had a brilliant idea, he thinks someone is stealing our internet from our wireless router.  It is not password protected because it is so old, I can not get it to accept a password without calling Linksys, and they tell me they will be happy to help if I fork over $40.  Really that is how much the router cost 4 years ago, I don't want to pay that.  So I might be investing in a new router.

Anyway, I do not have a blog of the week, mainly because I have not been able to get on my email. But I do have this little funny, I saw on facebook this morning!  This made my morning, maybe because it hit home!

I am so excited to see what you have been up to!



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Thursday, February 16, 2012

Valentine Swap with Happy Hour!

Will you be my Valentine?  This year, I participated in Adrianne's of Happy Hour Projects Valentine Swap!  It was so much fun... especially since I was able to Swap with Adrianne!  Adrianne and I email each other regularly, so this was especially exciting!

I was so excited when I received this package in the mail!

Look at all my goodies!  She hand stamped me a necklace, made a darling card, and of course she sent some chocolate!   Here is a closer look of the necklace.
Photobucket

She had actually planned on making me something completely different, but had a little bit of a disaster.. It is really funny story you can read about it HERE, she did get a new washing machine out of the deal though;)

I think the necklace is pretty sweet, and this was a fun experience!  I am glad to count Adrienne among my friends, and blessings!  Thanks Adrienne

Curious to know what I exchanged with Adrienne?  Go on over and visit her and SEE!

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Little Black Book of RECIPES!

I think I have mentioned this before, but I love to read.  Lately one of my favorite series has been a Culinary Mystery Series by Josi S. Kilpack... Yes two of my favorite things a novel--- and FOOD in one book.  They are a series about this quirky middle aged women who finds herself in ridiculous situations, solving crimes, and baking up goodies... Anyway this really isn't an advertisement, I just think they are fun. 
But the one thing I love about Sadie Hoffmiller (i.e. the star of the series) is that she carries around a little black book of recipes.  And not just ordinary recipes can be put in this 'black book' only the best, tried and true recipes.

So naturally, I thought I needed a black book of recipes as well...

I used a black binder, scrapbook paper, DCWV La Creme pack to be exact to decorate the binder.   I used my two favorite fonts in this project, Jane Austen, and Rough Typewriter, both can be found on Dafont.com for free!

I protect each of my prized recipes with sheet protectors.  I made some simple printable tabls, and used clear packing tape to connect it to the page protectors.

I made dividers with Scrapbook paper, and put embellished them with a simple label I created in Photoshop. You can download my labels HERE, if you would like.  This project took a while to complete but it was not hard.

I compiled all of my favorite recipes from various sources, and now they have one happy home.. No more hunting down cook books to find my most favorite recipes.
Since not just any recipe can go in my Black Cook Book, I made some guidelines for recipe insertion:
  1. Must have tried the recipe at LEAST three times successfully.
  2. Must be a recipe you would be happy to give to guests!
  3. Should be a recipe that is someone's favorite!
  4. Whenever Possible include the source of your recipe.
There you have it pretty simple right?  What would you include in your little black book of Recipes?

 


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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Shrinky Dinks... Valentine fun!

My oldest daughter is a lot like her mom.  She likes to turn everything into a project!  This year the Princess Valentines were not going to cut it, she wanted to make them.  Luckily for me her favorite medium right now is Shrinky Dinks, which is great because I love them too!
We decided we would make key chains for her class.  I found some really cute conversation heart key chains from Oriental Trading, for really cheap... like 72 for $7.00 (SCORE)!  My daughter still had her heart stuck on Shrinky Dinks, so we added charms to the key chains for each of her class mates.


Items Needed
Shrinky Dink Paper (I found mine at Hobby Lobby)
Key Chain
Key Chain Clasps (circles to connect the charms to the key chain)
Permanent Markers

 Using a standard home printer you can print whatever designs you would like on your Shrinky Dinks paper... this has come along way since my Shrinky Dink days!  For the girls in Princess's class we make cupcake charms, for the boys we made Rock n' Roll guitars!  We also printed the names on her class list.
If you are not familiar with Shrinky Dinks, copy the image several times bigger then you want the end result to be.  It will shrink and become fairly thick.  For example for the names, I printed them at 56 pt font.. after they were shrunk they were more like a 14 pt. font.  So it shrinks quite a bit.
 Color your charms with PERMANENT marker (this is a little scary in our house).  After they are colored, cut the charms out, and with a regular hole punch, punch somewhere around the charm.  Don't go to far in, or they will be hard to get on the key chain.  You will be surprised at how sturdy they are once they are shrunk.  Now they are ready for the oven.
And this best part of Shrinky Dinks... watching them 'shrink' before your very eyes in the oven... I would have done a close up on this but man my oven is dirty!
When you pull them out of the oven you have a SMALL window of opportunity to flatten any pieces that might not have been flattened.
After they are cooled off, I usually spray them with some clear spray paint.  To help keep the color on better.
Now time to assemble the Key Chains. We attached the charms with these pesky miniature key ring things .  Can I just say my fingers are RAW! My sister thankfully helped me with this and her beautifully manicured finger nails are GONE...
But other than that they were a piece of cake!  What type of clasp do you jewlery makers use?




A perfect addition for any backpack!

Don't tell princess... but I like the boy version better!
She had so much fun giving these to each of her class!  What a cute first grader!

I like to LINK to these FABULOUS parties!  Join the fun!

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