Tag Archives: life

Armoire Makeover for Sewing & Fabric Organization

17 Feb

My super-Craigslist-finder sister found these awesome (and kinda ugly) armoires for $40.  In Hawai’i, we don’t have very many options when it comes to furniture.  Pressed board furniture does not do well here.  Solid wood furniture is preferred, but it costs a FORTUNE!  It’s often cheaper to buy quality furniture on the mainland and ship it here via ship cargo.  The best furniture finds are usually at Costco.  But, you’re limited to the type and it’s only seasonal.

Anyway, this piece is solid wood.  It’s very sturdy and all the drawers glide easily.  PLUS, it has the adjustable shelf clip thingys (I’m sure there’s a name for this) already installed.  Often times armoires aren’t outfitted for shelves on top.  And…with the push of a lever, the drawers all lock.  Perfect for little two year old hands and seven year old fabric lovers…who sometimes forget to ask before cutting up fabric.I broke up the hubby’s work day and told him that he needed to leave and pick it up within an hour and a half…nowhere near his office.  He was less than pleased (to put it nicely :)).  I was very happy!!!  He couldn’t park in his office building because it wouldn’t fit in the parking garage, so he parked at his mom’s apartment building and walked back to work.  All this in his “office attire.”  Thank you!In the beginning, I went after it with OIL BASED paint.  YIKES!!!!  Who knew it was so awful to work with?  I hated it.  I couldn’t stand the lines.  Now I know why everything grand-dad painted had those paint lines through them.  He was a painter.  I always thought he just used really good thick paint that left lines because it was so “quality” thick.  On top of that, I wasn’t even sure it would dry this month!  So, although I was very grateful for my dad’s free paint….I ended up stripping it all off the next day.  You can see here that I also attached paintable wallpaper to the doors and created a border with wood strips.  The wood strips were leftover toe kick boards from my kitchen remodel.  I just cut them on my table saw.This is how she looked inside before.And these are her insides after.  I used wrapping paper and Mod Podge.  I know it’s kinda wrinkly…but I wasn’t too worried about it because once everything’s in, it won’t show.  I had the same attitude with painting MANY coats on the shelves.  I just needed it to be “generally” white.

I drilled new holes on the drawers so that I could add knobs.  The knobs were brushed nickel, so I had to paint them.  I also removed the hinges to spray them black.Now, it’s not organized yet.  I just wanted to see if I could fit everything that I was hoping to inside.  I’m so excited!  Everything fits!  Anyone free to help me organize all my fabric into something that’s functional and pretty to look at????  All my favorite fabrics are in the drawers.  Did you notice that “keyboard drawer” and how it fits all of my sewing machine “stuff” perfectly?  I should probably screw a board on to the back of it so things won’t go falling off.In a nutshell, here’s how it went down.This was so fun.  I LOVE IT so much!!!  Now, to clean the house that was very neglected during this project. *sigh*


A Sea Glass Wedding On The Ocean

8 Feb

Gosh it’s taken me a long time to find the time to get to this post.   And, to save time, this is mainly just going to be a post of pictures.  There are soooo many.  Please pardon the lack of order.  WordPress is not the most user-friendly for inserting a lot of pictures, so it was taking too long to organize it.  I really had to cut out a lot of good ones.  I wish I could post pictures of everyone.  I didn’t get any great ones of just my brother and his wife.  There was an “official” photographer, so she took care of that.This is my oldest brother with my youngest brother.  Both of their wives are natives of the Philippines.It was a LOVELY event.  It was so elegant and so beautiful.  We love love love our new sister-in-law!  We are so happy for my brother.  They make a beautiful couple.As for my kids and their wedding attire, I really wanted them to “coordinate.”  The only way to do that I realized was to sew the clothes myself, so I sewed my daughters’ dresses.  I was pretty excited about my older daughter’s dress because I “designed” that one in my head, then on paper and it came out as I imagined.  My little one’s dress started off as a peasant dress, but it wasn’t happening…so I did a bunch of stuff to make it look the way it did and I was really happy with how it turned out.Everyone had a great time planning and putting things together.  With my sister-in-law (who did the jewelry) as the coordinator, we were quite the wedding force.  Everything was beautiful.  All of the vases were re-used from past weddings in our family.  The decor was so incredibly budget friendly.  The reception was held at my brother’s home turned vacation rental.  The setting was perfect.For the food, we all took care of a dish or two.  Everyone kind of does at least one dish really well…so we stuck with that.  The food was so amazing.  Here’s my dad at the stove.The company was fabulous.  It was a small-ish reception in that it was just the family.  So, including my grandma (who is 90 years old and has more energy than me!), that makes 38 of us.  My sister and her husband who currently (not permanently 😉 ) live in California, came so it was really nice having our whole family together in the temple.The bride’s sister flew in from the mainland and she has a cousin that lives here who was able to attend.  My daughter and my niece are excited about their new aunty!That’s my Crafty SIL/Jewelry Store/Wedding Coordinator on the left…and one of my ultra fabulous baby-sitter nieces on the right.  As you can see, height does not run in our family.

Here are a few candids…All the little ones loved walking through these crystal strands.My kids love all their older cousins.We got the idea for these monogram letters from Pinterest.  My mom cut them out of pine wood and painted them.  They were a really nice touch.We brought the letters inside to hang on the wall once the dinner started.My sister did the same thing under these plates that she did at the shower.Here she is with my oldest niece.  Sometimes we suspect they were made from the same mold.I love this boy…and his smile.One of my super-dependable baby sitter nieces and my nephew…son of the groom.Strategizing the cake cutting.Daughter of the groom…she got him good!I love this shot my sister-in-law took.  The sky is a perfect backdrop.Look how much spunk my grandma has.  And that’s my “Martha Stewart Sister” who doubles as a pastry chef.  Very handy to have around.  I love that she lives about a minute away from my house.This is the sea-glass candy she made that I talked about at the end of this post.My daughter and my niece had fun with my camera for about 10 minutes….I have so many pictures of my sister here…she’s setting up something in almost every single one.Here’s my cute niece sneaking (getting caught) a plate of cake in a dark corner of the room.

And here’s my daughter…not so sneaky with her cake.  It kept her busy while we were cleaning up.Boys Club.And more candids. Everyone loved the edible pearls.As you can see, it was a lovely event that we were all thrilled to be a part of.  Congratulations to K & J and the beginning of their new life together.

The Jewelry Party Before the Wedding

27 Jan

Yesterday, a few days ago, I mentioned a fabulous event at the bottom of this post.  The event I was referring to is my brother’s wedding.  It was full of fabulousness and beauty.  Almost a week before the wedding and the same day we got to meet his lovely bride for the first time, we had a “Jewelry Night” with all her new SIL’s and the older nieces.  I guess it can sort of be counted as her bachelorette party.It was a time to break her in to us.  Her new overwhelming family.It was also a time to make some bling for the wedding.My super talented SIL (gray shirt) who makes and sells jewelry set everything up and taught us how to make a few pieces.Other than the fact that the poor bride-to-be (red shirt) had major jet lag (we think she’s a trooper for coming anyway), it was a lot of fun.I didn’t get pics of all the finished pieces, darn it!  But here’s one I took on my phone (I really dislike blogging with iPhone pics) that I sent in a text message.Maybe my SIL is reading this post and has some pics she’ll shoot over to me 😛

In my next post, I’ll tell you all about the shower.  Here’s a sneak peak:

Be An Example

23 Jan

Back in December, my son was making an ipu in his class. An ipu has a variety of uses in old Hawai’i, but for my son’s class, it will be used as a hawaiian instrument. After they cleaned their gourds on the beach with sand, they cut them open and cleaned them out.Then, they made cording to use as a strap (pretend not to notice the nails that need to be cut and cleaned).While my son’s class was working on this, I was moving from in and out of the classroom depending on the “station” that I needed to be at. My two youngest were moving with me. Without any instruction, my daughter sat down, grabbed a piece of my son’s cording and attempted to make her own.This was a powerful reminder for me about how we teach our children. It really doesn’t matter what we say. At the end of the day, how they really learn is by watching what we do.

And with that, check back tomorrow…I can’t wait to share a few posts relating to this fabulous event we had this past Friday!

Fully Potty Trained!!!

11 Jan

Yay!  Today was a celebration.My youngest went to bed with “big girl panties” and woke up dry!!!  I consider my kids fully potty trained when a) They can tell me when they have to go 2) we can go places without a diaper AND 3) sleep through the night without a diaper and wake up dry.

She graduated to an advanced degree in potty training as she also did TWO public restrooms in two days…yuck!!!  And here she is all cocky and proud of herself.It was fun looking through coupons tonight and seeing $1.00 off of Pampers and wanting to “clip it,” and then remembering that I didn’t have too!!!  Yay!!!

Hello GOALS 2012

2 Jan

Wow!  It’s been two months!!!The only reason that I have for not blogging is simply that I didn’t have time.  As much as I love blogging for me, it’s just not high on the priority list of things that I HAVE TO get done.  So, it took the back seat during all the Christmas programs and school activities, crafts that had to be made, gifts that needed to be sewn and parties that needed to be attended to.  I have so many things I want to blog about (coming in the next few posts), but for now, we’ll start off the year with goals.For Family Home Evening tonight, we set our goals for 2012.  If I’ve learned anything about goal setting, it’s that they are no good without a plan.  So, as we set our goals, we also made our plan (download at the bottom).  And new this year, I added a “check-in” date.  That’s a date that we put on the calendar to see how we’re doing.  If we’re doing great or we’ve mastered a goal, that would be a good time to set a new goal.  If our action plan isn’t working out, adjustments can be made at that time.  I think this new “check-in” date will be good for incentivizing us too.  The kids had a great time as we put each person’s date on the calendar.  They were different for different events.

Each person had a spiritual goal and two personal goals.  I have a few more than that floating around in my head, but for the family, this was a good amount.  For my spiritual goal, I will be following along with my Sunday School lessons and my Relief Society lessons on my own.  I teach nursery (18 months to 3 years) during these lessons, so I do not get to attend.  For my action plan, I will study one lesson book from Sunday to Tuesday and the other from Wednesday to Friday.My personal goal #1 is to flatten that belly!  For January, I’ll be doing CrossFit twice a week.  February will be three times a week and in March I’ll jump to five days a week.  March 31st is my check-in date.  The hubby is a certified CrossFit guy, so I highly doubt I’ll miss my mark on this one.  He’s kind of pushy encouraging when it comes to working out.

Personal goal #2 is to BE BETTER.  This includes being more organized, talking kinder, yelling less, etc.  I was inspired by this church message.  A lot of being better for me requires more sleep and more organization.  So, for 2012, it’s to bed by 12 (I know this is really late for some people, but it would be a dramatic improvement for me!) and shower by 10.  It seems like when I shower earlier, I go to bed earlier.  Then, I will operate with an organizational plan for the kids which includes some new responsibilities for them and less for me.  I will also operate with a monthly plan, broken down to a weekly and daily “to do” list.  I’ve done this before and it works beautifully.  I just need to stick to it this time.

The kids came up with some great stuff. (The yellow just hides his sister’s name 😉Some of it will really challenge them, but it’s totally do-able.  My five year old wants to be obedient!  I was so happy!!!  His action plan consists of picking up his dirty laundry, taking his dishes to the sink without being told, and always FLUSHING THE TOILET!!!  My daughter who will be baptized in April wants to read the Book of Mormon from cover to cover before her baptism.  She has a chart that she will follow to keep her on track.  My oldest boy wants to be the best basketball player he can be.  He and my husband came up with his action plan.  It makes little sense to me, but they seem to get it.  I love how enthusiastic everyone was.  Now we just need to stick to the plan.

So, there it is.  I blogged about it, so now it’s “in writing.”

You can download a goal setting forms below.

goal setting form as pdf 2012

goal setting form as excel spread sheet 2012

Painting Outside

3 Nov

My kids paint quite a bit.  We mostly do it inside.My sister has morning sickness…yuck!  So we went over to her house to keep her kids (and mine) busy for a little bit.We decided to paint outside.I realized that painting outside is so much better.  Not just for the clean up either.  I’m not watching to make sure they don’t get paint on everything.  They don’t have to be so careful.  Look how much more fun it is.And cleaning up is so easy.This was a fun day.  I think anything outside is more fun.