Thursday, December 1, 2011

I am so excited to share this wonderful website with everyone :) My good friend (and amazingly talented artist) has just launched her own website.  Here is a little preview:
"Flamboyant Flamingos," 2011, acrylic on canvas

Allison's recently launched website :)
She is currently based in Florida (we miss her up here in the mitten though!) and has been creating up an art storm down yander.  She self-describes her work as having a "quirky whimsical feeling" and I couldn't agree more.  I hope you enjoy exploring her artworks and feel free to contact her about pieces for sale or just to send a compliment her way!

Follow the link here to swing over and see this extroverted artista's new page.

Thanks for dropping by!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Real Simple Recipe

Ok so my mom made this TO DIE FOR cranberry hazelnut bread the other week and I just made two batches - they are currently cooling on the racks (L is trying to snitch...tisk tisk!)  I used this recipe from Real Simple magazine and you can follow to the link here or you can stay on S'mores and check out all the deets.

 I doubled up on this (you might want to as is that addicting)
Fresh out of the oven!
**I added some honey to the list as well (about a tablespoon for a double batch)

  1. Heat oven to 350° F.  Toast the hazelnuts for 10 to 12 minutes.
  2. Butter your bread loaf pan. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugars, baking powder, and salt. 
  3. In another bowl, whisk together the butter, milk, eggs, orange zest, and vanilla; add to the flour mixture and mix until just combined (do not overmix). Fold in the hazelnuts and cranberries.
  4. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 55 to 65 minutes (tent with foil if the top browns too quickly). ***My bread was done around 47 minutes***
  5. Cool in the pan for 30 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. 
deliciousness on a plate ;)

 The night ended a little something like this...
Couch date while I blog ;)

Christmas decorations are up and fresh baked notch night :)

Baking is my crutch to procrastination....a final paper has my name on it, but the house needed some holiday cheer.  Time to sign off and get writing.


Saturday, November 12, 2011

House number three

So closing on house number three went down last Friday and it is already almost finished!  It is the cutest one bedroom home that L has decided to fix up - I've only been involved via the phone for paint color and ok-ing the flooring ;) A potential buyer is already in the works as well, which is great for a quick turnaround.

Here is a peak at the house when it was purchased:
Isn't she cute?

The living room - fresh paint, new blinds, new lights and new carpet

The bedroom with a nice size closet - fresh coat of paint, new carpet and new closet doors

The kitchen - fresh coat of paint, new flooring, stackable washer and dryer will be added as well as a fridge! Can't wait to see how it turns out :)

The layout of the house and potential furniture placement ideas.

Just keepin' everyone updated! Check back for the updated photos and enjoy this lovely Saturday afternoon :)

Saturday, November 5, 2011

She's finished!

So it has been a minute and the house is finally completed! Another one was picked up just yesterday (photos coming soon!) which will have a quick turnaround and (fingers crossed!) staging! I am dying to be able to stage a house...if you couldn't tell already :)

Here are some photos of the house:
Home! First attempt at was surprisingly fun!
One of the bedrooms with fresh paint, new ceiling fan and refinished hardwood

Fresh paint in the bathroom and a fresh coat of enamel paint to spruce up the tile and tub!

Brand new bathroom off the master suite

Still my favorite part of the house <3....the basement puts up a fair fight though!

Completely refinished with new carpet and extra square footage - wishing this was ours!

Brand new appliances, counter top was updated, new flooring and fresh paint!

Another view

Lots of living room space with tons of natural light - fresh paint and new carpeting!

Beautiful fire place

Upcoming projects: tie dye and curtains (for my awesome nephew!), attempting to reupholster an awesome wing back chair that I picked up from craigslist for 20 bucks (!) and trying out Etsy for some of my sign language art - can't wait to see how it goes!

Hope this finds everyone doing well and enjoying these beautiful fall days we're having (time for raking leaves, anyone?)

Sneak peak at the first item going up for sale on Etsy: Shop S'mores
the beginning... :)

Check back soon!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

sign language

The current house that we live in has very little images/paintings on our walls...sometimes it feels more like a rental, but that has finally changed.  I've made some great buys at Michael's and Hobby Lobby here in town, but I'm still searching for the right combo before I hang everything up on the wall.

I also picked up a 7 pack of 12x12 canvases while shopping the other day and made use of two of 'em tonight.  L's sister got married in April (it was one of the most beautiful weddings I've ever been to--it was even blogged about, here) and the photographer (little bit 'o sunshine) snapped a shot of me fixing L's handkerchief...I eventually framed it and the photo has been sitting around the house for several months (typical!)

Anyway, back to the I thought let's do something with initials.  I googled clip art for M & R for our last names and found an image of R in sign language - ding! I could draw out the initials in sign language on the canvases and incorporate the picture somehow - perfect!  Honestly, I think it took me longer to hang the pictures (I'm terrible at being precise...not my forte) than it did to draw and paint the images.

Materials used:
- black acrylic liquitex basics paint
- two 12x12 canvases
- pencil
- paint brush

Here is the final result:


Friday, September 2, 2011

current project :)

L closed on house number 2 yesterday...and we began working on it today.  I'm in love with this house.  She's beautiful and has tremendous potential.  She even has an all seasons porch! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!  Side note, anyone else watching Clueless on TV right now?  Totally enjoying this flash back.

Anywho!  Here is a look at all the before pictures of the pad:
lots of space in the kitchen - cabinets will be getting a paint facelift...I think I'm addicted to painting everything.

entry way with tile flooring

beautiful fireplace! I want this house!!

looking into the living room from the dining room off the kitchen
the porch! <3
Bedroom 1...beautiful hardwood floors that need a little bit 'o lovin

master bedroom

master bathroom
bedroom 2!

I think she'll turn out to be a beaut! Keep checking back to see the progress we've made around this lovely lady.  Hope everyone has a fantastic holiday weekend - stay safe!


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

inexpensive kitchen backsplash idea!

So, after fixing up a house on the side with L...aka detailed painting in the nooks and crannies of the house...I rarely want to do any work on our house. Ever.  I have one week of freedom (kind of) left before school starts and runs my life again.  Boy have I taken advantage of that!  Touch up paint throughout the house: check, fix holes in the wall: check, kitchen backsplash: check, clean: it messy already? major check.  oops!

Anyway, so our budget doesn't exactly have room for a pretty tiled backsplash...but we do have room for some craft paint and stencils!  Off to Michael's I went in search of some inspiration for crafting....and I walked out with some Martha Stewart stencils and Folk Art paint in Champagne, meowza!  I also remembered while purchasing my lovely champagne colored paint a post from Young House Love.  This post from YHL was of little miss Clara's closet involved a potato and paint - Sherry and John = creative!

On to the kitchen!

Unfortunately I don't have a before close up of the kitchen backsplash.  We used Benjamin Moore's Azores on the wall and Wedgewood Grey throughout the rest of the kitchen.

The secret weapon.
The final result - an iridescent sunburst stencil on the wall for a little extra something.  Love it!

You can see the stencil prints from certain can barely even see the stenciling on the left side of the wall, but they're there...I promise!
 The project was an hour labor of love...put on the Pandora and paint away! I did not measure the spacing between the stenciling, just eyeballed everything and used scotch tape to keep the stencil in position.

Now all we need is a dishwasher....hmmm! :)

Stencils and s'mores,

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


Earlier this year I went garage sale hunting with a good buddy and the two big finds of the day: girl scout cookies and a wooden crate for $1.50....who can beat cookies and a $1.50 find?
cookie monster!

The coveted wooden crate!
Time to do some work!  We were in need of a recycling bin for our cans that we take back to the store (hello there 10 cent refund - directly into the vacation jar! woot woot!)  I had been hunting for a crate for awhile...there were some awesome vintage finds (old crates for cherries, soda, etc) but they were 15 bucks a piece and I couldn't really see the point when I knew I wanted the bin to say recycle.  Alas, my crate and I were united.  I used stencil letters and chalk to outline where I wanted it to say recycle.  **In hindsight, I probably should've had the word recycle going on a diagonal rather than horizontal, but oh well!**
One letter left to go! (:

Fill in the chalk lettering with your choice of paint - I used Dazzling Metallics Elegant Finish in Crystal Green (green only seemed fitting for the project!) from Michael's.  This is a really quick project - perfect for a rainy afternoon :)
In all her glory...full to the brim.

You could certainly use this idea for more than recycling - you could have a towel crate, or even store toilet paper in your bathroom; if you have kids - each kid could decorate their own bin and keep the crate by the front door as the drop box for backpacks, shoes, hats, etc; or could store magazines and books in a crate, DVDs...anything you want really! Sky is the limit :) What would you use a wooden bin for?

Happy recycling :)