Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Zinnia Table Setting

I know that not everyone has access to fields of free cut flowers, so I consider myself quite fortunate. Often when I go to see my parents during the summer I leave with a passenger seat full of flowers. On my drive home I was trying to come up with ideas on how to use the flowers sitting next to me.

(Sorry again for the iPhone photos, I need to start keeping a camera in my pocket)

(The aforementioned passenger seat full of zinnias, dahlias and sunflowers)
(this guy was not shy)
I decided to use the zinnias in an outdoor table setting without spending much money. I bought two 50% off plates from Goodwill. I ended up spending $1 total on this mini project. I spray painted the plates to use as chargers.
The GW plates are even a good match for our regular Crate and Barrel plates.

Next I used painters tape and more green spray paint to turn a plain jar into a stripey vase.

I already owned everything else pictured in the table setting. I made the Bon Appetit cards using Picnik.

I have been using my new chargers with dinner. They even make hamburger helper look fancy!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

'Live the Life You've Imagined.' Part 4

We started the week off by camping with our good friends at Potato Creek State Park. I took the above photo on our bike ride, which Stef, the mountain biker, claimed was a leisurely pace and I was pedaling with all of my might.

1. Sleeping in tents was much more comfortable this year compared to our frigid experience last October. 2. Road trip through small town Indiana. 3. We are fancy campers. 4. Worster Lake. 5. I stopped at the cow factory, also known as Fair Oaks Farm, to pick up some milk and extra creamy ice cream. 6. This morning I strolled through downtown Lafayette, visiting the farmers market and a local gallery. 7. Black Eyed Susans from our bike ride. 8. Mom and I patronized the Tastee Top while I was in town, are you starting to notice an ice cream theme in my life? 9. These giant marshmallows were fun. 1 giant marshmallow = 5 regular marshmallows. 

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Fridge Scrabble

(my camera battery only lasted for two photos and then I had to resort to the iPhone)

I have had a busy week picking tiny wallpaper scraps off the kitchen walls. I signed up to be a Mary Kay consultant. (I have stated that the only way I will get a new car is if it's free...I can see myself in a pink Cadillac) The past two days I have been job shadowing at a hospital. All of these events were on my to do list, yet they would not make for very interesting blog material, so last night I put together some fun fridge magnets.

For six months I have been looking for Scrabble at garage sales and Goodwill to make Scrabble magnets. Apparently there is a Scrabble hoarder in my town. My garage sale picker, aka Mom, finally came through with a $2 vintage set.

I bought a $3 roll of adhesive backed magnets at Michaels. This project was super easy and fast. With the help of Mom, we backed all of the tiles in less than 30 minutes.

(the baby photo is a snap shot my mom had of me on the fridge)

Although I have always enjoyed a competitive game of scrabble, my mom's friend MB is the first person that I saw creatively using the tiles. Her creations gave me the idea for my magnets. Since then, I have seen the tiles all over. I may have to use the above photo as inspiration in the future.

Friday, August 19, 2011

'Live the Life You've Imagined.' Part 3

Highlights from this week include:

1. The overwhelmingly plaid wallpaper came down in the kitchen.

2. The clematis that I transplanted twice from my house in Indianapolis bloomed!

3. Josh bought me a shrub for our anniversary that attracts humming birds and butterflies. I also received a spa package and a gift certificate, so I can go pick out more plants. (He knows what I like :)

4. I took the plunge and bought a sewing machine with the gift card my coworkers gave me on my last day of work. Hopefully with my 7th grade home-ec lessons and YouTube, I will be able to figure out how to work this thing.

5. The apples on the tree in the backyard are getting ripe. I am going to attempt to make apple crisp while camping this weekend. (I ate one early this week to make sure my fellow campers do not get the dreaded 'cog-a-mag-as,' a nasty stomach ache that Grandma Kregel gets)

6. On Thursday I had an adventure in Indy. I lunched with Nicole, made a pit stop at Trader Joes, went to book club and got to check out my cousins' new super cute house.

7. This little feller greeted me while watering plants this afternoon.

8. Homemade pizza party, with fresh basil and tomatoes, on Tuesday with my sister.

9. We always teased my grandma for 'canning and freezing to get by'....look at me now. I froze some of Dad's delicious 277A sweet corn, the best sweet corn in the world!

Linked at: liferearranged, agoodlifeblog, lifemadelovely

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Kitchen Makeover

Phase one of the kitchen makeover will include painting the walls 'Thunder Storm' by Dutch Boy, painting the cabinets, adding new hardware, switching up the lighting, and adding some fun stuff on the walls.

We have lived in our house for over a year and dealt with our kitchen looking like the inside of a kilt. The reason why I have neglected tackling this project is that I am not a big fan of removing wallpaper. After bribing my sister to help with various household items and clothes, she agreed to help.

(kitchen before)

(kitchen before)

(Luckily my helpers are limber, there was a lot of required climbing on cabinets and the fridge)


Saturday, August 13, 2011

'Live the life you've imagined.' Part 2

Week one of being unemployed was outstanding!  I got to spend a lot of time with close family and friends and went on several adventures. I also had an interview to start volunteering at the hospital. As long as I pass my TB test today (cross your fingers) I am good to go. Next week should include a lot of projects. I am currently bribing my sister to help me tear down the red kilt-like wallpaper in our kitchen. (Hopefully a DVD player and some clothes will seal the deal)

From the top left:
1. I love weddings! We had a smashing time at our friends' wedding on our first anniversary. (I also enjoy fancy wedding cakes)

2. The day after our anniversary we had a celebratory cook out with family, complete with an additional sky lantern launch.

3. Despite my feeling that ’Friendship Bread' is a food safety disaster waiting to happen, it is delicious.

4. On Wednesday, Mom and I took a trip to Shipshewana, IN. It was fun being in Amish country and sifting through the junk at the flea market.

5. I got to see Grandma Kregel this week. She did not believe I quit my job. (Request to be her friend on Facebook to see all of her special antics: Annie Kregel)

6. On Monday, Mom and I made a pilgrimage to Ikea. I loved this fabric, but I'm not allowed to buy any more fabric until I learn how to sew.

7. 2011 is the year of the Zinnia, according to the National Garden Bureau. I quite enjoyed myself picking an armful of zinnias from my parents' field of flowers.

8. Hibachi grill for my sister-in-law's birthday

9. I found this urn at a garage sale for $4, flowers are compliments of my parents gardens.

linked: liferearranged, lifemadelovely

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Vacation Chotchkie

(Sister Bay, Wisconsin)

I am usually the cruise ship director on family vacations. I plan where we are going, orchestrate activities and I come up with a theme. This year we went to Galena, IL and Door County Wisconsin. We went with a circus theme. (I chose not to post photos of Dad as the bearded lady and Mom as a muscle man in case they ever decide to run for president) Overall, it was a relaxing, low key vacation with plenty of orange styrofoam circus peanuts.
From Top Left: 1. My sister and I went on a 12 mi bike ride through the hills of Galena to a winery 2. Lovely outhouse on Cana Island 3.Beach in Ephraim 4. Anderson Dock Marina, Ephraim 5. & 6. Fish Boil at the Old Post Office Restaurant in Ephraim 7. Sister Bay 8. Mom & Dad at sunset in Sister Bay 9. Cana Island

(Cana Island)
(Baileys Harbor)
(Spike Horn Bay)
The point of this post was not to trick you into looking at my family vacation photos, it was to share with you my hand crafted vacation memento. I have never been into embroidered light house sweatshirts or tourist trap fridge magnets, so I came up with my own special way to remember our trips. While there, I collect sand from the beach and a few little shells. I purchased the clear glass ornaments from Hobby Lobby, which they sell year round at my store.
I let the sand dry on a plate for a few days so that condensation did not build up inside the glass. Then I carefully removed the metal cap and made a simple funnel out of paper.
After pouring the sand into the glass, I used hot glue to secure the cap. I also used hot glue to to attach some jute string to the top.
Overall, I am much more pleased with this ornament than a set of Door County salt and pepper shakers. The plan is to eventually have a small Christmas tree covered with all of these vacation memories. So far I have Bermuda, South Beach, Hawaii, and Door County covered.

Friday, August 5, 2011

'Live the life you've imagined.' Part 1

August 6, 2011 marks a very important date in the Moon household; it is our one year anniversary. The past year has been absolutely amazing. Previous to marriage we did not live together, as a matter of fact, we didn't even live in the same city... Over the past twelve months, my husband has been working on teaching me how to relax and not worry so much. He also goes along with most of my crazy ideas and for these reasons, among many others; I love being married to him.
August 6, 2011 is also important because it is the first official day that I will be unemployed. I am walking away from a successful career in which I met many outstanding people over the past four years. This job no longer seemed like the right fit and I was constantly badgered by the feeling that I was wasting my time and talent. After much consideration and support from my husband, I have decided to walk away.

I am currently working on applying to grad school. I will not find out until the spring of 2012 if I am accepted into the program. In the mean time, I plan on doing everything I can to take advantage of this time and work on living the life I always imagined. I am going to volunteer, get a fun part time job, devote time to my hobbies, transform our kilt-like kitchen and other rooms in our house and cherish the extra time I get to spend with our family. 

I plan on chronicling these adventures in my blog to share with you. I will also be snapping photos with my phone of objects/experiences/etc. that simply make me happy. Once a week I will share with you my 'research' on living the life I always imagined.

From the top left:: 1. Flowers from my husband...just because 2. This week's CSA goodies. 3. Friendship bread starter from a coworker 4. I love getting good mail.. 5. $1 vintage garage sale dress 6. My closet space doubled since I eliminated my work clothes 7. I am addicted to McDonalds 49 cent cones. 8. Treasures from the flea market 9. A Brain...or cabbage that looks like a brain that eventually became coleslaw.

Linked at:liferearranged