Saturday, December 29, 2012

Gold Leaf

"That is the simplest, prettiest thing in the world", I just said out loud.  Perhaps a slight exaggeration, but this is a pretty clever idea.  And just about as easy as it gets.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Christmas Bouquet

My jaw just dropped when I saw this.  And someone mentioned making it out of those sentimental heirloom ornaments you might have inherited from your grandmother... brilliant!!  I LOVE it.  So gorgeous and so clever.

Twiggy Wreaths

These really reminded me of my sister in Winnipeg, but I thought I'd stick them on here for future reference.  Although the tradition and symbolism behind a regular wreath makes it timeless, this is a cool twist on an old classic.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

DIY baby swing

This is a seemingly very simple and very cute idea.  A swing that you can make yourself that goes a bit beyond a board and some rope.  I'd love one of these for the girls' room, although I won't claim that there's enough room...sigh.  But even just for the back deck, this would be awesome!  Once we get the sewing room set up, this might have to be one of the first things I tackle!  Sweet!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

BE who you want to be

WOW.  It only takes two minutes to significantly improve the outcomes of your life.  Watch this TED talk.  She explains how in her study, individuals were told to stand in a "high power" pose or a "low power" pose (picture Wonder Woman and someone texting), for two minutes and then go into a high-stress interview.  The people who took on the high power poses were preferred by the judges, by far.  The judges didn't know what was going on, they just evaluated the candidates for the job.  Watch the video if you want the details, but it has to do with hormone levels in your brain.  So, she says, next time you're going into a high-stress performance situation where you really want to be yourself and say what you want to say, hide in a closet and stand like a super hero for two minutes.  That's it!  Awesome!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Halloween Ideas for Two Kids

While the kidlets are still little, it is really fun to amplify their adorability with ridiculous halloween costumes that match.  This post has a bunch of super simple and really adorable ideas that are actually clever, not cheesy.  We've already got a pirate on our hands, and a baby parrot might be just what she needs to complete the disguise...

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Alphabet Shadow Box

My love for tiny things, displaying collections, letters/fonts and kid stuff all combined into one great little project.  Lots of work but super cute.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Make Your Own Fabric

I must definitely do this.  How cool would it be to put my girls' art work into a piece of clothing?  Or curtains?  Or...anything!  SO cool!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Closet Space Brilliance

This is a great way to add storage space to a tiny bedroom.  It's a long post, but scroll to the bottom to see the finished product.  You do have to give up your bedside tables, but I think it's worth it if you're short on closets.  Genius!

Polka Dot House

I just think this is an incredible piece of art.  We've had discussions with many people about the value of abstract art.  I don't mind it, although it seems to drive some people crazy as an insane waste of time and money.  How about this?  Watch the video too.  I just LOVE it.

Cell Phone Ideas

Here is a great list of things to do with your old phone.  The first couple are a little lame, but the last bunch are really cool!  Who would have thought?

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Spice Rack Book Shelves

This first picture shows a clever idea - book shelves made from Ikea spice racks.  I love how it shows the covers of the books - the best part!!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Loft Bunk

Just another shared room inspiration.  Love the creative bed rail and the simplicity of this design.

Super Fam

Just have to remember this photo when it comes time to take family pictures with my kids...So awesome!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Slot-together Crib

Before we had our first daughter there was talk of building a custom small crib to make more space in her tiny bedroom.  We didn't go through with it, but if we had, we should have done something like this.  Totally simple and brilliant.

Papercraft Alphabet

I love letters, and these are gorgeous.  And free!!  Sweet!

Junk to Funk

Although I really think that doing your entire house this way is a bit over-the-top, there are a lot of cool ideas in this house tour on Apartment Therapy.   The photos are numbered and the ones that stood out to me are the barn door window coverings (3), the Coke crate desk organizer (25), the Christmas light lantern (36), the mattress memo board (45) and the hanger curtain (54). Very creative, resourceful and stylish.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

"Eclectic Collector"

Reading through a few recent posts on Apartment Therapy, I began to wonder what my style is.  "Happy Modern", "Classic Glam", "New Traditional" - none of these seemed to really hit the spot for me.  But just as I was about to call it quits for the night, I came across this post.  It's a round-up of a bunch of different "Eclectic Collector" style kids' rooms.  As I clicked through (and had fun saying "Eclectic Collector" over and over) I realized that a bunch of the rooms are ones I've bookmarked before and that almost all of them are really appealing to me.  I love the variety of colours and textures, and eras.  I like the emphasis on display, not just practicality, and I like the playful feeling.  So I guess that's my style.  I was just thinking it would be great to have an empty shadow box up in my daughter's room just so that each little things she finds and thinks is worth keeping can have a space...  Yup, Eclectic Collector pretty much sums it up.

Monday, June 25, 2012

three in one

I must keep track of these inspiring people who manage to find ways to squeeze multiple kids into one bedroom.  This is a great example and this one too..  Being creative (especially with storage) is totally central to making these arrangements possible and I hope I can do that myself when the time comes...Soon!

Monday, June 11, 2012

have you seen this weed?

I just learned that this weed, called Plantain, is actually something helpful!  Our lawn, after our first attempt at reseeding, remains a lovely jungle of unwanted plants, many of which seem to be worth more than I thought! This interests me in particular for use on bug bites - I get them bad.  Interesting...

Friday, June 1, 2012

First Birthday Book

Here we go - SouleMama does it again.  She claims she put this together at the last minute, but really?!  Amazing.  I can totally see how a one-year-old would LOVE this.  And since it's just something small, you could easily put it together using scrap fabrics that you have lying around.  Being the sentimental mush-brain that I am (especially as a pregnant person) I sigh a gigantic sigh when I see this type of thing.  Definitely one to file away for, perhaps, the fifth child...

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Messy Party

Really, when you think about it, almost anything can be a theme for a party.  This one** is so fantastic - Messy!  The only requirement for the food, decorations and games is that they help you get messy!  How awesome!  So much more fun than worrying about fancy dresses and perfect cupcakes (although I'll probably do that a few more times in my life).

** Unfortunately it appears that is down for some reason.  Sorry that the links from her site no longer work!  In this link she features a party where the theme is messy.  They have flour wars, eat powdered donuts hanging from strings, make mud pies and do other hilariously messy activities.

Word Book

I love this idea** of making a book with words and pictures of specific things in your home that baby might want to know.  And this book would be useful for a long time, even once your child starts to learn letters and spelling.  I have also been thinking about making a face book (ha) for baby with pictures of all the people who love her.  She LOVES to see pictures of faces and familiar ones are just that much better.

**Unfortunately it seems that is down for some reason.  Sorry that the links from her website no longer work! In this link she had made a photo book (like something you'd make on shutterfly) using pictures she's taken of objects around the house (train, spoon, teddy bear...) and also of those words written out using those magnetic letters.  Super cute.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Wall Table

In our house there is no official "dining room" and we don't have an eat-in kitchen either.  So the table hovers somewhere at the edge of the living room.  It's fine for what we need, but can get a bit frustrating at times.  This is a great solution to that problem.  Although I don't think I'd spring for a $500 table ("on sale!"), I'm sure one could easily come up with something similar for a few less dollars.  Definitely cool.

rag curtain

I'm always hesitant to get rid of fabric because it seems that when the time comes, having just the perfect thing is such a lovely feeling and you don't want to risk regret.  This is a great way of making use of some of those little bits and pieces.  It takes almost no work and has a sweet effect, especially for a kids' room, I think.  And it would hold all the memories that are tied up in those fabrics too.  Cute.  Thanks, sis, for the link to this blog.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Four Girls, One Room

Okay folks.  Let's talk about plans.  Plan One: have lots of kids.  Plan Two: live in a small house.  It is probably safe to say that these two plans do not go well together.  I am, however, hopeful that we can accomplish both by having our kids share bedrooms.  While this is not an ideal when it comes to babies, in my mind, it is an ideal when it comes to kids.  As adults, we have chosen to share our house, forcing us to put others before ourselves.  We value this.  So why would I do anything different for my kids?  But the logistics of fitting multiple kids into one (not gigantic) room can be tricky.  This post is an amazing example of making it work in style.  WOW.

Moon Bed

I just LOVE this adorable little baby bed.  Oh to have time and space for such a whimsical luxury!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Communicating with Kids

As everyone knows, communication is the key to any good relationship.  I'd have to say I don't often think about, or hear about, practising good communication with your kids.  This idea is a thoughtful one which is so easy to execute and a good way to pass the time on a trip.  How sweet.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Lyric Garland

Although it would probably be a LOT of work (unless you have access to some sort of giant alphabet punch), I love this idea of writing out the words to a song on a garland.  It just puts a song in everyone's heads and brings a whole new meaning to "there's music in the air"...

Star Party

I LOVE throwing parties, and I LOVE the stars, so this kids' birthday party is right up my ally!  This mom goes all out, but even just a star theme would be great in my books!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Ice Eggs

Here is a great, creative, cheap activity to do with the kidlets in the heat of summer.  How cool!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Bee Hotel

Yesterday was so warm that my daughter ended up spending most of her day outside.  It was wonderful and she had so much fun discovering all kinds of "gugs" (bugs) and other living things.  Her fascination with even just a simple ant gives me the time to stay on top of the weeds in our little gardens.  Of course it's too early to really get anything put in to the garden, but I'm starting to think about it.  One idea I just discovered is building a little "bee hotel".  Interestingly, mason bees do not live in hives.  When they hatch, the males and females mate immediately, the males die and the females each set off to build their own nest and lay their eggs.  Also interesting is that these bees are excellent pollinators and they only sting if they are squished.  Sounds like a perfect garden pet, so why not build a home to attract it?  Perhaps we'll try to fit that into our list of spring projects.  It helps too that this little project is almost as much a piece of art as anything...

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Built In Space Saving Strategies

As we face the prospect of living in our two-bedroom apartment with a toddler and an infant, my brain loves to spin and spin with ideas of how we could make our tiny space work.  You already know that I love apartmenttherapy and their Small Cool Contest is on again, where they celebrate the art of living small.  That's where I found this great little set-up, (the website is French, but just look at the picture).  I don't think it'll work in our kids' room, but we may be resorting to some sort of similar bunk/loft idea eventually...

Monday, March 26, 2012

Crocheted Rug

I believe my mother has done this and I definitely plan to try it out some day.  I love old fabric and certainly an old sheet is one of the softest things there is.  Area rugs are stinkin' expensive so this would also cut costs.  Recycled, hand-made, cheap?  Sounds good.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Computer Re-boot

This is not my usual type of link, but I liked the reminder of this post, to use what you have instead of just tossing it and buying a new one.  Obviously this person has skill and know-how, but I still find it inspirational - lots of people with skill and know-how still just have a disposable mentality when it comes to technology.  Yay for recycling!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Bits and Pieces Activity Board

As my little girl gets older, and since she is still (for only a couple more months) an only child, I find that she relies heavily on good toys.  Right now she is immersed in the world of baby.  She dresses her baby, changes her baby, feeds her, plays with her, talks to's amazing.  Although she is in love with her baby, there are times when you can just see her little brain wandering around (inside her little trouble-making body) looking for something engaging to do.  We have one of those antique Fisher-Price Activity Center toys, and she'll occasionally give it a whirl, but I think this would make an excellent addition to our collection.  Any grandpas out there looking for something to do?  Take all of those little mechanical bits and pieces lying around your shop and make it into one of those!  Awesome!

Monday, January 30, 2012

When Kid Stuff Takes Over the World

This is a great post about different ways to store kids toys and prevent them from "exploding" all over your house every single day.  I particularly like the last picture, suggesting the use of outdoor hanging baskets as toy storage - it gets them up off the floor (floor space is precious in my house), and also keeps them visible so that they'll actually get played with.  Plus, I have a few of those kicking around my basement...

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Not Enjoying Every Moment...

I don't always read her blog, but whenever I do, I'm sure to laugh and sigh, thinking, so true.  A friend of mine pointed out this post to me, and it's a great one.  Another rule to cross off your 'how to be a perfect parent' list.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Dreaming of a Library

As we begin to think thoughts of a new house, now that ours is starting to feel a little tight, I think of SouleMama and dream.  In her huge, old farm house in Maine, she has a library.  As an adorer of books, this is a luxury I'm not sure I'll ever have, but one that I'll always imagine as a possibility for our next house.  Adding to those dreams is this post, where, in his completely different style (which I LOVE), SoulePapa writes about books.  It made me smile.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Skateboard Shelving

You don't often see clever ideas for decor in a boy's room, so this is a definite gem.  I love it!!  Add skateboards to your garage sale list...