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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Updates and Living Room Makeover Breakdown

Hey Everyone!

I hope your weeks are moving along well.  Things are going well here!  There's a lot to be excited about.  If you missed the exciting news yesterday, you can read all about it here.  Along with the news I shared yesterday, I have 3 other big pieces of info to share with you all:  

1.  I have my very first business sponsor!!  Can you believe that?  I surely can't!  We're still working out the details, but I can't wait to share more info about this business with you all.  I think you'll be pretty excited about it. Along with this, my friend, Meg, at henning love is sponsoring The Foreign Domestic all December.  You should pay her a visit to say hello!  Thanks, again, Meg!

2.  As a goal, I told my husband when I hit 50 followers that I would give my blog a facelift.  Well, yesterday I hit 50 followers (thank you all!) so I'll be updating the look of my blog!  We all know that the number of followers we have doesn't define us or our blogs, but it's encouraging to know people are excited about the things I'm excited to share!  Plus, this goal gave me some extra motivation to perform "digital surgery." Stay tuned on this one--I'm hoping to have it all complete by next week!

3.  I've been asked to guest blog for a few different blogs in the next couple of months.  I'm really looking forward to linking up with some other bloggers.  I'll share all the details of when and where the posts will be when the time comes.

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Switching gears for a bit.  Do you remember when I told you in the living room makeover reveal post that I would share the breakdown of what I did for the makeover?  If not, you can click here to read all about that! Exactly one week from the reveal, I'm sharing the breakdown of what I did.

Let's look at it by the numbers: 


1.  I wanted to rearrange some of the furniture to open it up more.  You can see from the before pictures, that the living room was a little closed off.  I wasn't a huge fan of moving the love seat in front of the window, but it worked so I did it.  I was so tempted to buy and install window treatments but I kept reminding myself that we'll only be here a few more months. 

2.  Remember the lamp upgrade?  Here's a link to that post if you missed it.  I think the colors work well with the rest of the room. 

3.  I found a sweet deal on colorful pillows to add more "pop" to the room.  I actually ended up pulling in pieces of art from other rooms that matched the pillows.

4.  You may also remember seeing little DVD cases in the before pictures.  Those little guys stack nicely so I made them one big shelf.  I have a decent entertainment center in storage so I didn't want to spend any extra money on getting new shelves when I didn't have to. We'll see that center again in the future.

5.  I brought in a bookshelf from our office and painted it a brighter yellow color.

6.  I got this fancy looking mirror for $10.  It's so fun, don't you think?

7.  Remember this awesome gift from my husband?  You can read all about it here.  I love the way this looks in the room.  The best part is, it looks even better in person--trust me!



1.  I made these unique pieces for the wall for $19.00.  You can read all about them and how I made them at the bottom of this post

2.  Again, I shifted some furniture and got two more accent pillows to brighten up the room.


3.  I painted a couple of wooden stools that were in the kitchen area before.  I decided to go with a pistachio color.  Here are a couple of before/after shots of the stools.  In the past, I probably wouldn't have chosen pistachio, but I figured if I didn't like it I could always paint over it!  Gotta love paint!




1.  You can also see where I moved these pieces from the TV wall to the side wall in the before/after pictures.  I've had that cool looking key for a couple of months now, but I wasn't sure what to do with it.  I kind of like it in it's new home.  Also, something about the key reminds me of that old movie Never Ending Story.  I love it.

2.  Remember my entryway makeover?  You can catch up on that here.  Well, I found what was missing.  Remember that mirror redo?  You can read all about that here.  I found a home for the mirror and now the entryway feels complete.  

**Non-Numbered Item**  I purchased the area rug at a very decent price ($69.00 with military discount) from the Home Depot.  If you're looking for a nice rug at a reasonable price, check out their selection

Here's the breakdown of expenses:  
Sun Mirror- $10.00
Area Rug- $69.00
Wall Art- $19.00 
Pillowsx4- $28.00 
 Extra Paint- $7.00

TOTAL:   $133

Again, my goal was $100 so I was over my budget by $33.  I don't think that was too bad.
I can't wait until I can get my hands on some of the furniture we have packed away in storage to help bring our living room together even more.  Until then, this will do!

Linking Up Here: 


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Received the Liebster Award and Won a Necklace!

 
Hey All!  Well, I finally sorted through all of my emails from before, during, and just after Thanksgiving.  Now that my husband's home, time seems to get away from me **That is not a complaint**.  When I looked through my emails, I had a huge smile on my face from all of the great comments you all left me on my posts.  I responded to all of them (except the noreply-comments..those are impossible)--thank you all!  I also had a huge smile on my face when I discovered I was given a blog award and won a giveaway!
 
What a fun surprise when I learned that The Scrappy Housewife awarded me with the Liebster Blog Award! The award is designed to promote up and coming bloggers with less than 200 followers. Thank you so much for thinking of me!

The rules of the award are that you copy/paste the award to your blog linking back to the one who gave it to you. Then you pick 5 blogs to pass it along to and leave a comment telling them so.

Here are my choices:

Kate@ Daffodils
Loretta@ At Home With Loretta
Shanna@ Swoon Style & Home
Denise@ Count It *All* Joy

All of these blogs are so different from one another but I love visiting them--I hope you do too!

Also, I won this amazing Shabby Apple necklace from a giveaway at The Little Giggler.  Cute, right??  I never win giveaways!!!  What a fun day!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Photo Challenge #3 and #4: Sunflare and Sunset

Sunflare-  This picture was taken on my husband's college roommate's front porch!  Beautiful view!

I hope you all had wonderful Thanksgiving Weekends!  Mine was so nice!  I was reunited with my husband and we traveled to Idaho to spend the weekend with some of his family.

During our visit, I had the chance to practice taking a ton of pictures.  I suppose the picture above could count as a sunflare and sunset, but I took the picture below later on that evening so I'll have this one count as the sunset. 
Sunset- taken from the same porch.


Here's one of me and my husband exploring Idaho!
  Have a great week!  Can't wait to catch up with you all!

Linking Up Here:


Friday, November 25, 2011

Be Safe

For all of you Black Friday Shoppers braving the stores today, be safe!! {Source}
 

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Source
I have so much to be thankful for this year; I'm praising God for all of my blessings.  

I hope you all have a wonderful time celebrating Thanksgiving!!



Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Living Room Makeover: Before and After Pictures

My Living Room Makeover Inspiration
Hey all!  I hope you're having a wonderful week so far.  Remember when I showed you all my inspiration pillows for the living room makeover?  Don't remember?  You can catch up here.  The pillows in the picture above served as my inspiration to upgrade our living room.  Well, now it's time for the big reveal of our living room makeover!!!

So, here are some before/after shots:

Before
After
Before
After

Before
Before
After
After

 Let's look at a before/after shot side-by-side. 
 
I had so much fun with this makeover!!  Can you tell?  I gave myself a couple of challenges for this makeover.  1)  I would complete the makeover in 1 week, 2) I wouldn't spend more than $100.  Well, I met the first challenge but, unfortunately, I didn't meet the second one--I went over my budget by $33.

I shared the lamp upgrade and the wall art project the other day, but I'll share all the details with you after Thanksgiving. Ooh, I can't wait to breakdown some of the other pieces I worked on for you all next week! Stay tuned!

What do you think??

Linking up Here: 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Guest Post: Kate from Daffodils

Hey Everyone!  Today is my very first blog swap with my friend Kate at Daffodils.  Kate and I have known each other for a few years now.  Interestingly, I grew up in the same town as Kate and her husband in Virginia (we never met) and went to the same college as her husband in New York.  Her husband was my brother-in-law's college roommate, teammate, and best man.  Although I've had the chance to hang out with Kate a few times over the years, I feel like I know her much better through her blog.  When you visit her blog, you'll see that it's bright, fun, and vibrant--just like her!  We both answered some questions; you can check out my answers on her blog here.  Welcome Kate, so glad you could join us!

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Hello Foreign Domestic Fans, thanks for having me today! My name is Kate and you can find me over at Daffodils blogging about my domestic life in Monterey, CA with my husband, Kevin, and two little boys, Cullen and Bennett.

Kirsten and I have known each other for a long time, but have really connected through blogging. I love reading about all of her creative projects and yummy meals, so I am so happy to be post swapping with her today and excited about meeting some of you lovely readers. Here we go:



Why did you start blogging?

My blog began as a home design blog, full of inspirations and projects related to furniture and decorating. But as time went on, it evolved into more of a lifestyle blog where I could share snippets of my life and things that inspire me. Since we are really far away from family (we are in California and our families are on the east coast), I feel like it is the perfect way to let our loved ones feel part of our every day life. Plus, it has become sort of an online journal for me and I love going back through my archives to see how we have changed and grown as a family.

What do you like most about blogging?

There are so many aspects of blogging that I love, it is really hard to single out one thing. My blog is such a creative outlet for me to write, create, take pictures and cook. It inspires me to find the good in everyday and to try new things. But I think best of all (and funny, if you go to Kirsten's answers on my page, you will find the same sentiment) I love the relationships. For the beginning of my blogging career, I didn't network much and only had a handful of readers, but in the last few months I starting following and commenting on more blogs and fostering real relationships with women I have never met. I think bloggers are the most positive and encouraging people out there and it has been so fun to get to know some many amazing people through their posts and comments. 


What do you like most about being a military family?


I love the adventure of it all. Kev and I have been together for six years and in that time he has been stationed in Savannah, Richmond, Kansas, Iraq (I stayed in DC), Winston-Salem and Monterey. In the past six years. Most people don't move that many times in their lifetime! But with each move, comes new opportunities, new friends and new experiences. And even though we have had a tough time adjusting to life in Monterey, it is such a special place. I can see the ocean out of every window in the front of our house, I mean, when will that happen ever again? 
What are your Thanksgiving plans? 


Sadly, we aren't close enough to be with family this year, but luckily, we have a lot of friends who can't either! We have 3 friends from our hometown in VA coming down from San Francisco and several invites around the neighborhood to stop by for a drink. We are going to explore Big Sur on Friday and then have friends over on Saturday to watch Auburn (hopefully) knock off Alabama!


What is your favorite Thanksgiving dish?


O man, this is a tough one. Who doesn't love Thanksgiving food? My grandma always makes the best turkey and my Oma (my other grandma) makes the best gravy, so I am hoping since I have some of their genes, I can whip up a pretty stellar meal. I also love anything with sweet potatoes. Yum.


What are some current or future projects you are working on?


Like Kirsten, my home is temporary and I am on a tight budget, so I am constantly 're-designing' things we already have and trying to make them work in our new house to make it feel like a home. You can always find me painting furniture, making curtains from dropcloths, switching rugs from room to room and scouring thrift stores for hidden treasures. Other than that, my two favorite little projects are these guys, and they keep me pretty busy!
 I hope you will pop over to Daffodils and say hello, I love to meet new blogger friends and if you are a fan of Kirsten's, then I am sure I will be a fan of you! Thanks for having me Kirsten. Happy Thanksgiving!

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Thanks so much, Kate!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Table Tray Makeover Part 4, Lamp Upgrade, and Unique Wall Art for Under $20!

The 4th and Final Table Tray Makeover
Hi all!  I hope you all had good weekends!  I had a great weekend and I have so much to share with you today.  I stayed very busy this weekend painting and working on other projects to get the living room ready for the big reveal on Wednesday.  I can't wait to share it with you all; it's all coming together quite nicely!

As you can see from the picture above, I finished the fourth and final table tray makeover!  Yesterday I told all my Facebook fans that I'd share the last table tray makeover with you today--I am just so excited with how they all turned out.  "Too Good To Be True" is the song my husband and I danced to at our wedding for our first dance.  If you missed the previous makeovers, you can click here, here & here to catch up.  

A reminder of what the table looked like before:  

And here's another look at it now: 


Here's a look at the complete set on the rack.
The Set is Now Complete!

Another project I worked on this weekend was a lamp upgrade.  My husband has owned this lamp for a couple of years.  I wanted to give it a little bit of an upgrade so it would fit in with the new living room decor.

Here's the lamp before: 

And here's the lamp now: 

I decided to paint it gold and red to brighten it up some and make it a little "warmer."  I contemplated doing something with the lamp shade, but I held off on that--at least for now.  I'm not completely sure what I'd do and how I'd go about doing it just yet.  But if I ever change my mind, I'll be sure to share it with you all!

The final project was completely spontaneous and so much fun!  We now have unique wall art for under $20 and it took 4 easy steps!!  

I walked into Jo-Ann Fabrics looking for some fun fabric to use as a tablecloth for the living room.  While I was in there, I found this really, really cool fabric.  Check it out:  


Unfortunately, I didn't have any coupons with me, so the nice lady who cut the fabric gave me one to use.  I paid $13.00 for a few yards of the fabric.  When I got the fabric home, I just didn't like the way it looked hanging on the table, so the next day, I visited the Dollar Store to find something I could us to get this fabric up on the wall.  My first thought was to find couple of giant frames, but they didn't have any frames big enough so I kept looking.  Then I found some big poster board.  I was afraid one poster board wouldn't be enough to old the fabric, so I purchased 6 boards (totaling $6.00) with the intent of sticking two together to make a thicker board. Grand total for this project:  $19.00!!!

Step 1:  I combined two poster boards together with some packing tape (not too classy, but it worked)
Step 2:  I cut the fabric to fit around the board with some extra room on the sides so I could pull it behind
 Step 3:  I used my staple gun to get the fabric on the board and keep it in place

Here's what they looked like when I was finished stapling them. 





Step 4:  I hung them on the wall with some Command Sticky Tape

Whew!  That was a fun and busy weekend.  I'm curious, what do you think of these projects?  Anything you'd do differently?  What have you been up to? 


Linking up Here: 



Friday, November 18, 2011

Happy Friday! Tray Table Makeover Part 3 and Photo!

Source
Happy Friday, all!  I hope you're having a great day so far.  I saw the picture above while I was poking around Pinterest a while back and thought it was pretty funny!  I don't know about anyone else, but sometimes I'll go on WebMD to try to figure out different things that may be wrong--most of the time, I find that the ailment is magnified (a lot) after I've finished my 'research.'

Well, I finished another table tray/tray table and wanted to share what it looks like now.  If you missed my previous posts with the other tray table makeovers, you can check them out here.

Alright, here's a reminder of what it looked like before. 

And here's the new look for the 3rd tray:
3rd Table Tray Makeover

I kept it pretty simple with me and my husband's first initial.  I put all the letters in a metallic gold paint to add some pop and shine.  It may be hard to read at the bottom, but it says "Est. 22 Jan 2011" which is our anniversary.  Overall, I'm happy with the way it turned out!
 
The picture below is another picture form my trip to the Outer Banks last weekend.  I'm still doing my own photo challenge, but I also decided to participate in the photo challenge over at Fabulously Flawed.  This week's challenge was "Animal."  So here is my animal..well, actually there are two in this picture. 




I hope you all have wonderful weekends.  What will you be up to?  I'll be busy working on projects for the living room makeover..stay tuned!!


Linking Up Here: 
 
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