Monthly Archives: July 2015

Custom wooden valance

This is how the window in the guest room looked when we started…


I didn’t mind the white sheers because they let in a lot of light.  I like how this room sort of feels like a tree house when you look out the window.  It’s why I love taking naps in there!

Here’s another shot:


I’ve had those sheers for a million years and the rod came with the house.  I did spray paint it silver to match the room better but I never painted the hardware that attached to the wall.  LOL  If you look closely you can still see the black pieces.

I wanted something really simple in this room because like I said, I love the light.  I decided to go with a wooden valance.


And look!  A sneak at the room.  It’s *almost* done.


It was an easy, inexpensive project and I like how it turned out.  Simple and a little rustic – perfect for the look I’m going for in the room.


Here’s how we did it…


1 & 2. went to home depot and bought a 1x12x8 (I think that’s the right order…).  It’s 8 feet long and 12″ wide.  We already had some scrap 2x4s in the garage.  I cut those to match the width of the long board.

3. I also bought these metal fence things at home depot:


They were around 50 cents so I spent $2.  I wanted gate hardware to put on the sides of the valance but each of those was 5 bucks!  for the small ones!  It would have been $20…  Here is what I originally wanted…


4. I painted the little silver metal things black with leftover spray paint in our garage.

Steps 5 – 8:  I used the same paint as the desk (Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint in trophy) then added a coat of antique wax.

Next up was installation.  Matt had to help with that.


First we used screws to attach the 2 2×4 pieces to a stud in the wall – I only painted the edges because they would be under the main board.  Then we screwed the long board on top.  Then he attached the metal accent pieces (they actually serve no purpose, I just like the way a little hardware looks…).


Also, Matt drilled pilot holes for everything and used deck screws.  I guess that’s the best way, I don’t know much about all that.  And plus also again, I took a selfie during all that cause I had just gotten my hair cut. lol!


That’s it!

Here’s a pic with some light…


The room is pretty much done…


All we need is our bubba!  Which by the way – we are headed to his graduation in south Louisiana next week.  We are making a mini vacation of it and staying in new Orleans for a few days.  I’ve been many times and enjoy the culture and food.  Matt has never been.  Well… we just finished watching season one of True Detective. Season 1 takes place in south Louisiana…ugh.  The show (while phenomenal) is so depressing and dark, really dark.  I need to read something fun and bright about new Orleans before we visit because right now I’m thinking the whole area is nothing but a voodoo haven of debauchery and evil people. geez.


Desk refresh

Moving along to the next project in the guest room/Gage’s room.  I mentioned before that we purchased this desk a million years ago (just kidding, Gage was a little tho so it feels like a long time ago but like yesterday in some ways too…).  Gage had it until he was a teen and then Cady inherited it.  She had a lime green room back then and wanted a Tiffany blue desk so we painted it for her.  When she got her new bedroom suit last year I had originally planned on giving the desk to Milo – kinda fun that all kids would use it.  We ended up doing a built-in desk/shelf combo in his room but I couldn’t part with this little desk, so much like the armoire, it went to the guest room.  It worked well though  because Matt would work in there from time to time.  The guest room is so was a good set up when he needed it for phone interviews, etc.


It was a bit girly, but who cares, right?  heehee

I figure that Gage will need a desk when he’s here since he’s in GRAD school.  He does have a desk at his apartment now but all his furniture is going into storage.  It will just be easier to leave everything packed up for when he’s ready to get his own place again.  AND – we don’t exactly have room for a bunch of extra furniture.  I think the only thing he IS bringing is his rice cooker. ha! We need it to make our favorite fried rice!  And maybe his TV, but that’s about it beyond clothes.

First step was to strip off the old paint…then sand…then paint it trophy gray…then wax the finish.


So much better!


Comparison. It’s a tight space to try and get a decent pic.


A couple of shots of the finish – I was going for an old worn look.



The only thing I had to purchase was the paint and that desk lamp from ikea – 19.99.  The chair we’ve had and even the knobs are leftover from another project.  Yes, we are always on a budget… lol


Next up I’ll tell y’all about the custom valance Matt built…And I’m going to work on the headboard this weekend.  We made another trip to ikea this week because we had to buy an art frame and we also picked up a Hemnes 3 drawer dresser to go in the spot the armoire used to be.  $129!  Great price.  As soon as it’s in the room and all put together I’ll get some pics of it added as well.


Almost done!

Anniversary Picnic

Matt and I celebrated our anniversary last weekend.  We are always up for heading downtown for an event or play so when I got an invite to the Nasher ’til Midnight outdoor picnic and movie, I knew we should go.  And of course, Matt agreed!  We have always loved going for picnics at Shakespeare in the Park so I was hoping this event would be similar.  It was even better!  So fun!  I should mention… It was a romantic evening out…


But Cady has been gone for most of the summer… and we kinda missed her and she was about to leave for church camp… so she came with us! ha!


I seriously LOL when I look at that pic.  She also had a blast, she said so multiple times and even snapchatted some pics to friends telling them how cool the whole place was.


We pre-ordered a picnic basket catered by Wolfgang Puck’s café.  It was yummy.  Fried chicken, garlic creamy mashed potatoes, a veggie tray, a side salad and rolls with honey butter and sticky buns for dessert.  On the veggie tray were some TINY pickles… lol – obvi I had to take a pic.


There were a couple bands that played for the first 2 hours we were there.  We ate and then walked around the grounds and even strolled thru the museum for a bit (the Nasher is a sculpture museum.)


and ate popsicles.  This is Cady's pic. :)  Love it!

and ate popsicles. This is Cady’s pic. 🙂 Love it!

Matt in the Phyllida Barlow "tryst" exhibit.  It's experiential art - you felt like you were in a funhouse with lots of mirrors but you weren't.  Creepy.

Matt in the Phyllida Barlow “tryst” exhibit. It’s experiential art – you felt like you were in a funhouse with lots of mirrors but you weren’t. Creepy.


Once the band finished up, the movie started.  “Big Eyes” was the perfect “art” movie to show at this event.


It was such a fun evening.  We will definitely do this again!

Our “new” bedroom armoire

I mentioned in the last post that we are in the process of switching some furniture around upstairs to get our guest bedroom ready to become Gage’s room.  The guest room and guest room closet is sort of a catch-all for furniture that didn’t have a spot in the rest of the house but we didn’t want it in the garage.  That’s why this giant TV cabinet was in there.  It’s a nice piece although ever since we moved to flat screen TV’s years ago it’s been repurposed for other things.  For a long time it was in Milo’s nursery in our old house for storage.


OMG I just dug thru my Instagram to find a few pics of the armoire when it was in Milo’s nursery (this was all I could find) and now I’m blubbering because my baby used to be so small!  Waaaaah!  Moving on…  We used it for diaper storage and Matt put additional shelves in it for his books, extra clothes, etc.  It worked well.  When we moved into this house he transitioned to more of a big boy room and the armoire was relegated to the guest room.


Honestly it was perfect in there.  I’ve used it for linens and other storage items.  But like I said, the room is very sweet and cute and not something Gage would choose for himself.  Plus he needs an actual set of chest of drawers so I decided to move this piece to our room.  Of course not before I ordered some of those nifty furniture movers last week.  Matt and I moved this beast up the stairs and across the second floor by OURSELVES.  We *almost* died.  So this time I ordered some of those furniture sliders and the move to our room was WAY easier.  Here it is in our room:


I guess Matt had already removed the top set of knobs.  I decided on Miss Mustard Seeds Milk paint in Artissimo.  It’s a dark navy – even darker if you use the antique wax (which I did). Here are some examples of the color since the lighting in our bedroom isn’t great:


From here and here.

I spent part of Saturday morning working on it and then finished it up on Sunday afternoon.  I lightly sanded the piece then filled in the holes where the old knobs were.  Then two coats of artissimo and then antique wax.


The new pulls are from home depot.  I found some relatively cheap silver ones for a little over $2 and then spray painted them the same gold as the lamp. Gold bar pulls are EXPENSIVE I found several online that I loved and they were like $40 a piece! what?!  We used the same hinges, I just sanded them a bit to make them more shiny.



And if you are wondering how we have this much space to have an armoire and rocker at one end of our master bedroom, here’s a peek at the other side.


So we still have tons of room in there.  crazy.  Hopefully I can get a post up about the guest room progress soon. I’ve redone the desk that was in there – it started as Gage’s desk when he was a little boy, then Cady inherited it and we painted it tiffany blue.  When she got new furniture it ended up in the guest room and Matt used to use it when he worked from home.  Matt and I also built a custom wooden valance for the windows.  I bought a new quilt for the bed… We’ve hung new artwork… I think I just need to decide what I want to do with the headboard and side table that is in there.  More to come!

From Old to Gold!

Thought I’d share a quick lamp makeover I did this week.  We are in the process of making over our guest room – lots of projects.  Gage is moving back home for his first year of graduate school (we are soooooo excited to have our Bubba back! – even if only for a little while).  Since he will be here for a while we are making over our butter yellow floral guest room to something a little more fitting for a smarty pants little bit geeky grad student. ha!  Anyway, with this makeover, there has been some furniture movements – we are moving our old (big) armoire from the guest room to our master bedroom.  More on that later, but part of creating this new space in our master bedroom means we are losing a shelf that has a lamp on it.  And this particular corner of the room is rather dark so I’ve been jonesing for one of those trendy gold floor lamps.  Inspirations…  Starting from LEAST expensive to most…

I like this one but I want the neck to be completely straight - no bend.

1. I like this one but I want the neck to be completely straight – no bend.

I LOVE this one - Target, you kill me!

2. I LOVE this one – Target, you kill me!

I'd totally buy this one too (if we were rich...ha!).  I love metal shades!

3. I’d totally buy this one too (if we were rich…ha!). I love metal shades!

Another Target win!

4. Another Target win!

That little metal shade and fancy base make this one of my faves.

5. That little metal shade and fancy base make this one of my faves.

After lots of research, this one was one of my top picks!

6. After lots of research, this one was one of my top picks!

And just for reference - this is an actual vintage mid-century piece... Nice, but I'd never pay the nearly one THOUSAND dollar price!

7. And just for reference – this is an actual vintage mid-century piece… Nice, but I’d never pay the nearly one THOUSAND dollar price!

Obviously I can’t go out and spend $500 bucks on a lamp… For realz…  We have had this old floor lamp hanging around our house for years.  It was less than 10 bucks from Target – and I just checked, they still have them there!  For 8.99!  I think it may have been Matt’s before we were married… then it was in our old den for a while… then Milo’s nursery… and since we moved last year, it has been stuffed in the guest room closet with a ton of other storage items.


So I grabbed some gold spray paint from Home Depot ($7) and headed out back to spray it down.


I went ahead and painted the plastic shade as well to give the whole thing a metallic look – like #4 & #5 above.  I wasn’t sure if I’d like it but gave it a shot.  Here it is:


In the end I preferred it with a shade though.  Like my favorites, #2 & #6 above.  You could use any plain shade or grab one from ikea or target for 10-15 bucks.  We already have a few lying around here from various other lamps.


I love it!

I love it!


I’m purposely not sharing this section of our room yet.  And I’m sorry about the poorly lit iphone pics.  Once the armoire makeover is done and the we’re finished with this project I’ll post some better pics!

Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to spend 250-500 bucks on one of those fancy trendy gold floor lamps.  (Mine is the cheapie third one in the pic below).


But let’s be honest.  It’s uber trendy and will go out of style before we know it – there isn’t really a point.  I love how this inexpensive refurb turned out.  And once we get the rest of the space done, it’ll fit right in!


Summer 2015 Road Trip Part 2 – Visit to Missouri

When I left off on my last post, we had finished camping and were headed to see Matt’s mom.  We always have a great time hanging out and laughing with Ninna (what Milo calls her).  Mostly we hung around the house…

I spy a tantrum... and it's not Matt this time.

I spy a tantrum… and it’s not Matt this time.



But we did head out a few times to visit family and have some fun.

Matt and I went antiquing one day…

I so wanted to buy this...

I so wanted to buy this…

I sent this pic to Cady because she loves going thrifting/antiquing and I asked if she wanted me to pick this creepy little guy up for her…

she said "no" btw...

she said “no” btw…

Friday night we headed out to have dinner with some family (at Boomland – a fireworks superstore that has a cafe inside) and then a mini class reunion for Matt (30 years…he’s old).

Dinner with Fam!  Look at all that healthy food! :)

Dinner with Fam! Look at all that healthy food! 🙂

After dinner with the fam (and purchasing a sh*t load of fireworks), we scooted over to the local bowling alley to meet up with Matt’s high school buds.  We found out AFTER we arrived that it was no longer a bowling alley and only a bar.  #ParentingFail

Matt's mc'ing at the front.

Matt’s mc’ing at the front.

Class of '85 - woot woot!

Class of ’85 – woot woot!

Milo also got to spend some quality time playing pool with uncle Ted…


When we had our fill of Budweiser and second hand smoke, we headed back home.  It was fun to meet a bunch of Matt’s old friends and listen to stories.  I think they had a great time with karaoke and dancing as well.

Saturday was Fourth of July and it was a blast of course (pun intended… those Welter boys seriously know how to put on a fireworks show).

Living in Dallas, we rarely get to see family.  It’s nice for us to be able catch up with everyone and Milo gets LOTS of cousin time.

Chasing goats…


Feeding goats… (the goats were a hit)


Chasing fireworks… (The uncles always get a bunch of pre-fireworks that the kids get to participate in.  Generally parachute things that blow up and float down.)


Blowing bubbles…


Riding on…I don’t know what this is called… a country golf cart? ha!

hanging with Uncle John!

hanging with Uncle John!

And of course sparklers…


And an amazing fireworks show!

Fireworks at Uncle Murphy's

Fireworks at Uncle Murphy’s

Of course we had a fantastic time and were sad to leave, but we were also feeling pretty tired by the end of our week long adventure.

We hit 7 states over the span of a week…

Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Kentucky, Illinois, Arkansas and back home to Texas!

Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Kentucky, Illinois, Arkansas and back home to Texas!

It was a great trip – can’t wait to do it again next summer!


A camping trip in the Ozarks!


Hiking Goggins Mountain Trail

Last week Matt, Milo and myself headed out on a 7 state road trip – Gage and Cady were vacationing at a resort in the Dominican Republic so don’t feel bad that they missed out.  We’ve already decided we’ll be going back next year and they’ll for sure be in tow.  We knew by the end of the week we’d end up in Matt’s home state of Missouri for the 4th of July to visit family, but for the few days before we decided we’d do a little camping.  I’ve never camped in the Ozarks and Matt didn’t want to visit the Arkansas section (he has been there many times…) so after a bit of research I decided on the Mark Twain National Forest in the Missouri Ozarks.  We settled on Johnson’s Shut-in State Park and we were not disappointed.  Our cabin was fantastic.  We spent time rocking on the front porch, exploring the surrounding areas and grilling on the “patio”.

A porch perfect for playing cars and panting dogs.

A porch perfect for playing cars and panting dogs.


And also rocking and having coffee.


That view!




There was a small pond outside our cabin as well.  Milo and Syd and I walked around exploring it and there were even a few people fishing in it on the first day we arrived.  You can barely see the cabins nestled in the woods along the sides.


When we weren’t at the cabin we were out hiking!  Photos cannot capture the beauty of the area.


Shut-ins Trail

Shut-ins Trail


Can you spot the Milo?

Can you spot the Milo? (Horseshoe Trail)


Horseshoe Glade Trail

Goggins Mountain

Goggins Mountain Trail

We took a LOT of selfies...

We took a LOT of selfies…

And because we loved the actual “shut-ins” area, we went back there a couple times.




Matt was obsessed with the perfectly clear chilly water.  I think he’d live in it if he could.


All in all it was a beautiful place and perfect to spend a few days.  After leaving Mark Twain National Park we headed to SE Missouri to hang out with Matt’s family for a few days.  I’ll get a post up about that soon.