Saturday, May 28, 2011

Time to Makeover...Time

I forgot to turn off Hubby's alarm clock this morning, so I was up and at 'em at 6:00 AM. Not a big deal, even though it's Saturday. I had a project on my mind and wanted to get started before the day made it too hot to spray paint.

That's right. No one followed the admonition of my mother to take the spray paint cans away from me. So I decided to makeover our huge wall clock that hangs in the future reading nook.

For those concerned, I did receive Hubby's permission before he left for his Scout camping trip last night. He said as long as I made marks for all the numbers (in addition to the wooden twelve, three, six, and nine that I had purchased at Michaels yesterday in anticipation of today's events), then I could spray to my hearts content.

Those are the magical words every wife longs to hear from her husband.

We bought this clock at Deseret Book just a few months after we were married. It was 80% off the original price, and I couldn't resist such a great deal. I admit it was mostly the sheer size of the clock that appealed to me...I wasn't too crazy about the writing or style. It had a cursive font saying, "Families are Forever." As much as I know that to be true, my house isn't exactly a cursive-type of place. And I didn't like the aged yellow background. In addition, I had seen the very same clock in several other homes that we visited. I like to be unique, not run-of-the-mill. Inevitably, a makeover on this clock was bound to happen eventually.

And then I discovered the awesomeness of spray paint. It was the perfect time to fix this guy. No pun intended.

The entire project took me less than an hour and a half. If you don't believe me, check the times on the clock!  Most of that was spent watching the paint dry. I can be so efficient when I'm awake this early on a weekend morning.

I lucked out by finding some white spray paint left over from when we moved in. I used my horse head green to add some color to the numbers. I then glued the numbers in place with Krazy Glue...those puppies could now survive a nuclear blast! I had to tweak the clock hands a little to allow them to easily glide over the much-taller wooden numbers now in place. Then I put the clock back together and hung it on the wall.

Which called for another photo shoot!

I really like it. I love how updated it feels. It changes the entire corner, which is exactly what I wanted. That clock has always felt out of place. It's nice to have it reflect our non-cursive lifestyle. And to be honest, it's a little confidence-booster to know that I can improve the appearance of things on the first try. Dang that dresser.

What do you think?

Friday, May 27, 2011

Things I Like - People Edition

We are so blessed to know some pretty groovy peeps. I think about how full our lives are because of those with whom we associate. Here are just a few examples:

1) My sister, T'liese. Just when I was about to toss in the towel on this entire dresser project yesterday, she gave me some sane advice. Put the brush down and take the weekend off. I realized how little fun I was having with this painting-the-Craigslist-dresser scheme of mine, simply because of all the mistakes and do-overs I've made along the way. The best part? She's going to come help me Monday while her husband watches their son, Evan. Now that's what I talk about practicing what you preach! You saved me lots of frustration, T'liese. Thank you!

2) New friends. We've been so blessed with incredible neighbors and acquaintances, especially here in our ward. But I think we recently hit the jackpot when we had Ted and Ann over for dinner. What an awesome couple! We chatted, ate dinner, chatted, ate dessert, and chatted over a five-hour period without even realizing how quickly time was flying by. It's going to be fun to have such neat friends who live so close. Hi, Ted and Ann! We can't wait to play again!

3) My Uncle Len. One month ago, this young (barely 60) guy fell and shattered his hip. In the process of fixing it, they discovered the cause as bone cancer that had spread to nodules in his lungs after his hip fell apart. He has already undergone countless surgeries to remove the giant tumor in his hip, and he is prepping for some intense chemo treatment for the nodules. Through all of this, he and his wife, Aunt LeeAnn, have been superstars. Though we are all praying for them, there is no such thing as too many prayers. Mention them when you say yours, will you?

4) My Hubby. He has been prepping for a Scout camping trip for a few weeks. They are leaving at 4:00 PM tonight to end up near Camp Verde. Then, early tomorrow morning, they are riding fifty miles on bicycles to complete their cycling merit badge! Though he's busy with work and home projects (I have no idea who's making him work on home projects), he's such a trooper and does it all happily. And who knows? He might even like camping with a bunch of kids!

5) My sister, Charloe. She's so thoughtful and is always thinking of others. When needs need to be met, she is first in line to take care of them. Even though she is expecting their third baby this fall (yippeeeee!), Charloe keeps busy taking care of everyone else, near or far. She was on top of the situation to help out some family members who didn't even have time to realize their needs. She filled them before it became a need. Charloe, you're a rock star. I admire and love you.

6) My brother, Jeff. Though deep in the throes of a job hunt that will take him and his family to the opposite side of the country, he has taken time to make sure everyone else is happy. He attended a funeral a few weeks ago of my Uncle Gary, and played a solid advisor to my parents during his stay. I know they appreciate him, and so do we. Way to represent, little bro! You're wonderful.

7) My Parents. I get to see them in just a few weeks, and I can hardly wait. One would be hard-pressed to find two more incredible individuals. They've handled recent developments with dignity and patience, which is probably more than I could handle. Stick with it, Mom and Merrill. It will all be over soon, and all will be well. Stay calm and carry on!

Who do you appreciate today?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Nobody Likes the Circus

I failed. It feels so weird to admit it. I should have known from my uneasy feelings this entire time. But I painted a dresser an atrocious yellow and didn't like it one bit.

I'm starting over today. I sanded everything down last night and stripped the intricate parts of the dresser to get rid of any sign of yellow. My retinas already feel better since they've stopped burning. This morning, I'm going to wash off all the pieces that had stripper on them, then proceed to spray gun on a primer coat. I'm now working with latex paint and had them mix a much better yellow. But you know what? I woke up this morning still not liking it (luckily it's still in the can this time and not all over my furniture). I'm going to take it back to Lowes today to see if we can put the Primary Colors to good use by adding some blue to make a green. I feel so insecure about this whole silly project now, but I just feel like even the new yellow isn't the way to go. I hope they're able to mix it into something I like, because it was more expensive than oil paints (which I will never use again, thank you very much).

It's been an emotional roller coaster. I was happy every step of the way until that yellow dried overnight. It just wasn't feeling the way I wanted, and the yellow looked like a kid's room. We tried to darken it for the second coat with some black paint to make it more mustardy and rich, but that didn't work, either. So...I'm starting over. Dread it all! I actually am dreading it all. I've spent a lot of time on it already, and I'm just ready to have it done. You know it's bad when I'm not enjoying the process of a project!

We borrowed an air compressor, and I bought a spray gun for $13. No, I've never worked with a spray gun in my life. Does that matter? Hopefully these next few layers will go a lot more smoothly. I've spent too much energy and effort in this piece to throw it away, but it is so tempting right now!

Headed out to prep for new paint. Hope I survive.

Monday, May 23, 2011

A Day At The Farm (Grill)

It's fun having a sister so close. When I'm home during the week, we'll usually find some store or restaurant that is begging for our patronage, just so we can have an excuse to get together. This past Friday, after I finished a coat of paint on the dresser, I showered (it was Friday, after all) and met T'liese and Evan at Joe's Farm Grill.

We've both been wanting to try this place, for many a reason.
1) It's owned and operated by the same people who run Joe's BBQ, which makes incredible food and never has a line out its door shorter than three-quarters of a mile.
2) Joe's Farm Grill was featured on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives with Guy Smiley Fieri.
3) The seating is just a ton of picnic benches outside, and we wanted to take advantage of the gorgeous weather before it disappears for five months.
4) We like food. But that should be obvious by now.

The decision was made to get two different dishes and split them to allow the opportunity to stuff our faces with maximum effect. T'liese got a cheeseburger and upped her side dish from french fries to onion rings. These rings were the main reason Guy came to the Farm Grill in the first place, and we had to be the ones to give our approval. They are incredible, by the way. I've never tasted such crispy, non-greasy onion rings. I highly recommend. I got a Texas Toast grilled cheese sandwich and upped my side dish to Baked Potato Fries. I really have nothing negative to say about french fries covered in melted cheese, bacon, sour cream, and chives. It was one for the diet records, that's for sure.

We found a table outside, which was nothing short of a miracle. The place was packed! We enjoyed watching Evan eat, watching other people eat, and trying to pinpoint when exactly mullets came back in style. We are hoping it was just a one-time fluke and not permanent. I don't think this nation can handle another bout with those business-up-front, party-in-the-back hair monstrosities ever again.

After we finished our delicious lunch, we headed to the San Tan Village. It's a giant outdoor mall with a great selection of stores. Of course, we stopped into one of our favorites...Ann Taylor LOFT. Someday, this is how I want to dress. I've been having so much fun getting our house up and running that I haven't bought many clothes lately. I wish I could justify spending $40 on a shirt, but that's always a tough one for me. T'liese found some great pieces on clearance and got some really cute things. It probably helps to be a size zero. I haven't been that small since kindergarten!

We then headed to the kids' playground to let Evan explore and play. I was dying of thirst and went to Dairy Queen to quench it. I had a fruit smoothie while T'liese and Evan enjoyed a brownie Blizzard. Soon it was time to get that little man down for a nap, so we made our way back to T'liese's house.

It was sure a nice afternoon, filled to the brim with good company, good food, and cute kids. I always love a day out with my sister.

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