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Showing posts from April, 2011

Out with the old...

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and in with the new. I put all the Easter decorations away today. Then came the dilemma of what to do with the mantel. I think it needs something but the TV above provides a true challenge. So I went shopping at home to see what I could come up with. After a few tries I came up with this.

(Let me apologize up front for the photo quality. I clearly did not miss my calling as a photographer!) The Easter bunny brought me these little numbered pots. I got a 1, 2 & 3. I put a bug in my hubby's ear a few weeks ago when we were shopping. Number one looks nice next to my DIY Mercury Glass.




Number 3 looks nice on top of some books. I love using books in decorating. They add height & color. I like to look at books at other peoples' homes - you can tell alot about someone by the books in their homes ( I think you can tell alot about people by looking at what they have in their shopping carts, too!)



I snagged my big wrought iron container from under a side table in the living room f…

At the Beach...

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It seems that every spring Pottery Barn has some sort of sea/water theme with lots of fun, beachy decor and decorating ideas. It's truly my favorite time of the year. Lots of ideas for summer-izing your home - many are things we can re-create because, let's face it, sometimes PB can be a little pricey. I got my latest PB catalog today full of coral, shells, and blue, lots of blue.

My dad was in the Navy so we moved around alot and spent most of our time on the coast (obvious, probably). We lived on the water at times but always near it. I thought that was how everyone lived - swimming in the river or ocean regularly. I think this is the reason I love the water. And I love decorating like I live on the water. Maybe somewhere like this: Or this:

Or this:




Even if you live in one of those places (lucky you!) you have to be careful of making your beachy decor look too cutesy, theme-y or, well, tacky. It's a fine line. Even at somewhere like Pottery Barn you can end up making a mi…

Decorative Storage....

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We have our fair share of framed prints and pictures but not so much space to display everything all at once without making our house look like a store. For a while the 'extras' were just leaning up in the corner of our office waiting for a new home. So I thought, wouldn't it be nice if I could display them without actually hanging them on a wall. Then somewhere, and I don't remember where, I saw that someone had put their framed prints in a basket in their living room. Kind of a decorative storage type of thing.

I can do that! So here's how I did it. I bought this basket from Michaels (with my 40% off coupon!) because I liked the size. The color wasn't quite what I needed. Black was more like it. Nothing a can of spray paint can't fix, right? I spray painted the basket black and then added a little tag I made with my Cricut. It looks nice on the hearth plus I remember what I have when I am redecorating since I see the basket everyday. It's also neat if …

Easter Table...

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I wanted to set a special table for Easter with a fresh, spring-y look. For something really fresh I needed to shop. But I didn't want to spend very much money.

A little background: I needed (wanted?) some new place mats. Something spring like. I had $19 in Kmart rewards dollars so I figured that was a good place to start. Surely I could get everything I needed for about $20, right? Wrong. The selection was s.l.i.m. There was a nice pale blue place mat I liked but there were only 3, I needed 5. And it was $5! Tucked down in the corner for $4 were these black & white toileplace mats. Cute, but black for Easter? Hmmm. After standing there for about 10 minutes debating and helping out an older lady who, like me, was disappointed in the poor selection but also didn't want to drive all the way out to Wal-mart, I decided to get the black toileplace mats and see what I could do with them. I also picked up 4 white napkins since I knew I could use them to make the table work. Using …

You say you want a Revolution....

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I hope everyone has been watching season 2 of Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution. It is eye opening to say the least.

Here he is filling a school bus with the amount of sugar kids consume each year - just in chocolate milk. If that doesn't do it watch last week's episode on what gets done to the 'extra' meat from your average cow.


This year's show has been focusing on school lunches, namely in the Los Angeles Unified School District. He has been banned from these schools by the school board. But he knows (as we all do) that these school lunches are not the quality food that we should be feeding our children. LAUSD isn't probably that different from the food in your kids' schools.

What's a mom to do? First of all, try to go to lunch with your kids and see what is being served for lunch. Even if you send lunch with your kids it's still worth looking at. Kids trade food at lunch. Some kids only get a hot meal at school. These are the kids that really co…

The Doors...

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When we moved into our house all the interior doors were dark wood. Not my cup of tea and I always wanted to have white doors and white trim. Knowing it would either be expensive to hire someone to do it or super time consuming for me, I put it on the back burner. I got a quote from a door company $175 per door installed. Using hubby as the door guy? $59 per door installed. Well, eleven years later we have white doors and trim. Here's a before - it's actually a 'still' because it's the one door we didn't change - the closet door in the office - it's an odd, special order size and we just haven't gotten to it. But it's a good thing since it means I have a 'before' for this post! I despised these handles on these doors too and was on a mission to find something I liked that wasn't too expensive.






Last summer we bought one door at Lowes and the hubby installed it - one door to make sure we liked it and that he was up to the task of installat…

Cake Boss, Part 2

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As with most plans here at September Acres, they change a bit. I had planned to spend the weekend making test cakes for LM's first communion. On Saturday morning I realized I needed to run to Michaels to get a couple of cake decorating supplies. I planned to go while the hubby and LM were at hockey but the banana muffins I was making were not finished in time for me to sneak out before they got home. So, my quiet little trip by myself turned into a 3 hour tour with the family. We ended up going to Big 5, Home Depot, Michaels and Walmart. Fun times. So I ended up not baking cake until today. I have a few weeks until communion so it's okay. LM requested a marble cake so I did that today. Full disclosure - I used a mix and it turned out pretty darn good.
We spent some time talking to the Wilton specialist at Michaels about fondant. I just love the look but I wasn't sure if that's the way I wanted to go or not. After talking to her I don't think it is. We have a tub …

White Sheets...

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Who doesn't love the feel of the crisp white sheets you find in fancy (and not so fancy) hotels. It's easier than ever to re-create that feel at home. On any kind of budget. Retailers everywhere are selling 'hotel' linens. Everyone from Wal-mart to Pottery Barn - and beyond. We actually got our white sheets at the same place we got our mattress and head board. And they were a fabulous price (I can't remember exactly but I think right about $100 for a king) for 600 thread count 100% cotton sheets. White bedding doesn't have to be plain. It can be ruffled or ruched or monogrammed. It can be crocheted. It can be lace. It can be jersey or flannel. It can be fun. But it will always be comfy and inviting and clean.
Pottery Barn has a great feature in their bedding section called the all-white bed. It offers great inspiration for making your own bed all white - or even partially white.


White sheets go with everything. If you want a colored comforter, your white sheet…

Cake Boss...

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Well, not exactly. But I can bake and I can decorate a cake and I like it. LM's first communion is coming up and we are having a reception after mass at our house. We did talk about ordering cupcakes from my friend's new cupcake shop. After a few episodes of cake boss LM has decided she'd rather have a cake. Something like this: Sure, if you don't want to go to college! I was thinking something less ornate, like this:
Something I can make with no problem. I told LM that this weekend we will have a cake tasting. We'll make a couple of cake flavors and see what she likes, decorate a couple 'mini' cakes and she can make her decision. I am thinking of making a red velvet (of course) and a marble cake and she can pick what she likes best.

It should be a sweet weekend...

BYOB...

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Bring your own bucket that is! We were at Micheals (I know, we spend way too much time there) yesterday after we went see 'Hop' - a cute movie, by the way. We took LM's friend, S, with us. We noticed Micheals was offering a FREE craft - right up my alley. The girls wanted to do this craft as soon as they saw the buckets. They provided the bucket and tons of foam stickers. If you missed the craft day the buckets are available for $1 each. Not too bad! When we were decorating the buckets I said 'you should leave these buckets out for the Easter bunny to fill when he comes, that way you will get more candy & treats since his egg won't be weighed down with baskets.' They loved this idea. So did the other moms and kids that were there. Every year I try to come up with some brilliant container to use as a basket. And the last thing we need is another basket (and the expense associated with it) so I had already come up with a 'use what we have' idea and wa…

House Tour...

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I love a good home tour. Andy @ Poppies at Play is having her 2nd Annual Parade of Homes Tour. You won't be disappointed if you go! Before you head over there I'd love to have you tour September Acres... Welcome! I love my front doors. When we bought this house I was so excited to have double doors. I always wanted a home with double doors. The original doors were very dark and had a 6 inch opening in each door that served as a 'peep hole'. It was kind of creepy really; haunted castle creepy. I wanted doors that would let in more light so I picked these.
Our 'mud room' - kind of - we have no mud here and it's not really a room but it's our jacket, handbag, backpack, shoe drop area right by the front door and leads into the kitchen & dining area.
The dining area. I love our table - it is compact but we can seat 8. Very nice to be able to do in this small space.
Hallway with my favorite barn star.
The kitchen.
Living room. We recently got this cou…

To Paint or not to Paint...

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that is a silly question. Of course I plan on painting. So we added the back splash which has really brightened the kitchen. There is still a bit of the wall that is dark brown (Chocolate Curl by Olympic). It looks okay but I am thinking something lighter but not sure if I want to go with a pale blue like this (China Blue by Benjamin Moore) or a creamy white like Sailcloth (Valspar)
or something else. I have the China Blue in my dining area which is open to the kitchen. It actually is a bit lighter than shown here. Believe it or not we have no where in town to get Benjamin Moore paint. A crime, isn't it? We had two places but one closed and the other stopped carrying it. There is a great guy at Lowe's who can color match it so I'm not too worried.
So let me know your thoughts. Take a look at the kitchen with the back splash - you'll also see the paint that is there now - the brown. The area that I want to paint is around the windows (that part touches the white cabinets)…

Spring Cleaning Update...

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This spring cleaning thing is moving along. Maybe a bit slowly but moving along anyway. You can tell by the ever growing trash bags in the garage. They should be dropped of at the Goodwill this week. There's also a bag of books and puzzles and games to take over to LM's old preschool. Moving right along. Simple Mom has had 'hot spots' the past few weeks:


My closet - CHECK
Paper clutter - NO check, yet.
Kid's clothes/toys - HALF a check - still working on this. It's one of those things that keeps growing - I go through clothes and realize that her dresser/night stand needs to still be painted after we redecorated her room. An old art cart in the playroom needs to be changed out with a new one that still has all four wheels.
Pantry - CHECK
Whatever you want - you pick the area. How great is that? I vote for junk drawers! Yes, we have more than one.
Confession #1: my pantry is done because I did this a few weeks ago. Probably about a week before the Project:Simplify pr…