Monthly Archives: March 2014

Absolutely free patio project!!

Hey friends! Today I’m so excited to share with you about my crazy love of free things. Things I find for my house that are free are just more fun! It makes projects absolutely worry free because I literally have nothing to lose.

Spring is definitely here early and I’m ready to get outside and enjoy this lovely weather. We have a teeny little covered porch that leads to the backyard and I haven’t done anything with it because it’s so small. But I finally just decided to go for it. Small isn’t bad but ugly is. And it was plain and ugly. So rather than sit around dreaming about my big beautiful porch that I’ll have one day, I decided to work with what I have. I’m so happy I did, too!
Since we just started a new financial class, we didn’t have a budget at ALL for new patio anything! So it was time to get innovative and start the search for free stuff! Here’s what I found.

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FREE rocking chair from a lady on craigslist!! Woohoo!

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FREE basket from the same Craigslist lady! (I absolutely love Craigslist!)

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This big board was here when we moved. YEP, you guessed it, FREE again!!

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These are some really weird plates my mom gave me. She knows I’m incapable of turning anything down if it’s free! They are plastic that can’t be microwaved and they are all different sizes. Since they were given to me I knew I had to find something to do with them.
Okay, so my collecting was done, my Pinterest board was full of ideas and it was time to execute!! My favorite part.
Here’s my inspiration for the rocking chair…

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And here’s what I wanted to do with the board.

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My plan is to sit in my rocking chair, sip iced tea while the boys draw on the chalkboard. Well I can dream, can’t I?
Anyway…The rocker was in real bad shape. But it was free so I just HAD to use it.
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It’s amazing what a long way a little paint will go! Here’s how it turned out.

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You can seriously hardly even notice all the cracks, scratches and dents.
So onto the next thing…I have a problem with obsessively needing to get a project DONE FAST!
The chalk board was pretty easy, fast and self explanatory.

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My new very old but still good basket was going to be the muddy shoe holder. That turned out to be the perfect use for the basket. Yay!

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Next, it was time for a little art for the walls! Ah! Those plates my mom gave me! (Lightbulb above head!) That’s what I’ll do with them! A little paint and chalk later, and I had this cute little outdoor wall collage of plates.

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Now it was really starting to come together and look cute!! Here’s our new little porch. And everything was 100%, absolutely, completely FREEEEEE!!!

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Our little artist already got to work on a masterpiece!!

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And now when I’m working away in the kitchen or dining room, this is what I see.

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Such a bright, colorful view! Now my dreams of having a cute, fun, useful patio came true. And all for free!!! Ah, now that’s a good day!!
Thanks for reading, everyone. Don’t forget to see the potential in the stuff people give you or you acquire for free somewhere! It just might turn into your favorite thing!

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Beachy Wood sign tutorial!

Hey everyone! It’s cold and rainy outside and I’m so bummed I can’t start my backyard revamp project yet. 🙁 So sad. BUT it means I can work on some indoor projects. Woot! I’m really trying to get all the rooms in our house decorated since we’ve lived here for almost 6 MONTHS! Whoa! Time flies!
So I worked a little on the boys nautical themed room this morning (post on that to come) and this afternoon I’ve been working on their beach themed bathroom. And I think it’s done! For now. Who knows what else I might see and have to add later. But for now, I’m happy with it. The last touch was a wooden sign that I made. Here’s how…
First, find a board. Make sure it’s somewhat smooth since you’ll have to trace and write on it. I got mine at the ReStore for $1.

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Next, paint it. Since my theme is beach, I wanted it to have a worn, drift-woody look. I also needed color though, since the walls are white. This is what I came up with. I just used Acrylic craft paint watered down.

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Then it was time to get the lettering that I was going to use. My quote is actually a Bible verse. Mightier than the waves of the sea is His love for you. Psalm 93:4. I thought this was good for a beach theme and a good reminder I can read to the boys while I brush their teeth or (eeek!!) potty train. So, I printed out the letters in the size and font I wanted, then cut them out and laid them how I wanted them on the sign.

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Then I scribbled on the back side of the words with pencil. You can be all fancy and professional and buy carbon paper, but I never do! I suppose it would be easier. But then I wouldn’t be able to let the 5 year old help me scribble. He’s always begging me to let him help with my projects and this was one where he actually could!

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Once you scribble, the back of your paper looks like this…yours might not include the crazy cute child!!

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Then I lay the paper down on the board and trace over the outline of the lettering with a ball point pen.

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It leaves a very faint stencil, but if you squint your eyes in the right light, it’s enough to see and trace over with markers.
I use either sharpie brush point, regular sharpies or my kids’ markers. Whichever either works the best or has the right color. The letters are too small to try to fill in with craft paint and a paint brush.

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Then you get this!

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I had an old can of shells (yes, from a junk sale), so I decided to hot glue some sand dollars on. You know, for the beach effect.

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All done! Took me about 2 hours, give or take ALOT of interruptions by annoying sweet children! I think it’s just what the beach bathroom needed to finish it off!

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Here are some of the other little beachy things in there.

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So that’s that! Another room done!

If you need some inexpensive, quick wall decor, or if you love old boards like me and have millions that need used, make your own cute wooden sign! And if you do, let me see how it turns out!

Thanks for reading and happy creating!