Thursday, May 3, 2012

DIY Dining Chair Makeover

Matching hasn't always been a priority of mine. I don't have a matching set of dishes or towels. Instead I've chosen each dish and each towel individually (you can see some of my dishes in the picture). I just pick things I like. And it just kind of goes together. So I decided that I didn't want my dining chairs to match either. I went to thrift stores and picked out 6 dining chairs that had been lost from their mates and just needed a little love. I gave them all a good sanding, a coat of fresh white paint, and new seat covers. And voila! My one-of-a-kind dining chairs. (I ordered the table online and it said it would fit 6 chairs. I guess I should have looked at the dimensions because this is not a 6 seater. But it will work for now.)



Monday, April 23, 2012

Adopt Me!! - Stella, our foster kitty

Zach and I caught a case of kitten-fever. Instead of adopting a kitten, we decided to sign up with our local animal shelter (Austin Animal Center) to foster pets in need. Stella is our 1st foster kitty. She's about 6 years old and very sweet. She lovesss to be pet. If you stop petting her she'll nudge you with her head to remind you how much she likes it. She's a little shy and has yet to venture very far from our guest bedroom even though we leave the door open for her. When she came to the shelter her fur was very matted and parts of her fur had to be cut out. She has a big spot on her neck where fur matts were removed (but it's growing back!).

If you're interested in adopting, you can view her on the Austin Animal Center's webpage at .

Friday, April 13, 2012


'I just can't figure it out.'' was my grandmother's response to me teaching her to use the new DVD player that we bought her to replace her old VHS player. It really wasn't hardly any different than the VHS except that the DVD had the menu that allowed you to choose a chapter, bloopers, extras, etc. This was about 5 years ago and I was 20 at the time. I remember thinking to myself ''When I get older I'm going to make myself learn the new technology.'' My grandmother (who is now 85) may have a slight aversion to new technology, but I think she tried to make herself do it anyway; she has since learned the DVD player, uses emails and even has a Facebook page (which she doesn't use, but hey, she signed up).

I never imagined this would be an issue with me since I've grown up with technology, but for the past couple of years I've had problems jumping on the digital book train. I'm not much of a collector, but I guess you could say that I collect books. Half Price Books is a line item in my budget. I had refused to go digital until recently when my husband bought me a Kindle Fire. It took some getting used to, but now I love it. I can read at night without having to turn on a light and wake up my husband. And I can download books immediately and even rent free digital books from the library. My Kindle is small enough that I'm able to carry around dozens of books in my purse with no problem. I imagine that soon, if it isn't already happening, students will have digital text books. That'll be a load off their backs, literally. I'm glad I've made the jump. 

But there's still something about holding a paper book in your hands...

Monday, November 28, 2011

DIY Fabric Fabric Flower Tutorial

Things you’ll need:
Hot glue gun (and glue)
Chalk (or marker)

I made my patterns using regular paper and just freehanded a 5 petal flower about 2 inches across. You’ll also need a small circle pattern.
Using your pattern and chalk trace 7 flowers onto your fabric and 1 circle. Then cut out your pieces. If you used a marker instead of chalk be careful to cut inside your lines so your final flower won’t have marks on it. If you used chalk this isn’t a problem as the chalk will wipe off.

Take one of your fabric flower pieces and fold it in half.

Then fold it in half again, so it is quartered.

Use the scissors to cut the tip off of your quartered flower.

Put some hot glue along the edge of your cut.

Glue the flower to the circle piece of fabric. Repeat above steps for 4 flower pieces and glue the pieces in a square shape on your circle piece of fabric.

Use the remaining 3 flower pieces (quartered, cut, and glued) to fill in the middle of your flower. Now you’re done!

I used fabric glue to put this flower onto a tote bag I made. You could add these to headbands, clothing, bags, hair clips, or whatever your creative mind dreams up. You could also hot glue the completed flower to a pin if you wanted it to be removable. Happy crafting!! (I apologize for the sub-par pictures. They were taken in bad lighting with my phone.)

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

DIY Newspaper Nails

I just finished doing my nails, and I have to say I'm impressed with the results. It was actually pretty easy. Start by painting your nails any light colors; I used a pale pink. Let it dry completely (must be fully dry or else the paint will smear). Cut small pieces of newspaper (I didn't have any change to buy a newspaper and the only free one was El Mundo, so mine is in Spanish. No, I don't speak Spanish. Haha). Dip the small pieces of newspaper into rubbing alcohol. Then place the paper onto your nail and press and hold for 30 seconds. The harder you press, the darker the words will be. Then gently pull off the paper. Finish by adding a clear top coat. Viola, unique nails.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

How to Use a Semicolon: The Most Feared Punctuation on Earth

I was updating my resume today and realized that my knowledge on semicolons was fading. I googled the proper use of semicolons and found a really funny and informative website ( I thought I'd share so we could all learn a little more about this misunderstood form of punctuation.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Starting Over

Our lovely little puppy had a field day while we were sleeping last night. I woke up this morning to find the power sander in the middle of the living room, a variety of items (toilet paper package, laundry basket, socks, and paper) drug over to her pillow and chewed on, and my husband's paycheck that was sitting on the couch is gone (I'm convinced that she ate it.) Also, my laptop power cord suffered some battle wounds. They look pretty minor, but it will no longer charge my laptop. 

I got on eBay and found a power cord for sale and the seller shipped it to me a few hours later. But that means that my laptop will be out of commission for at least a couple days. As a wedding gift, my parents gave Zach and I a MacBook Pro laptop. My Mom, a Windows user, bought it with the intention of learning the system, but not all good plans pan out. I've had the computer for a couple of months and have found myself avoiding it.

Faced with the options of no computer vs learning a Mac, I've decided on the latter. I'm 25, I grew up using computers, and I'm the person in my family that everyone goes to when they have computer problems. Wow do I feel stupid. I really took my thorough knowledge of Windows for granted. I've had to google numerous stupid things such as ''how to delete a folder'' and ''how to copy a file.'' But I'm now committed to the switch. Also, I refuse to be like one of those elderly people who avoid new technology like it's the plague.

I love my iPhone and I've heard that Macs are great, and MacBook Pro is supposed to be the best. I have high hopes.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Phil In The Circle

Phil Hanson is an artist that I recently discovered on YouTube. He makes unconventional art and posts videos of the making of his creations. I'll post a couple of the videos. The first one is a replica of the Mona Lisa using the grease from fast food as a medium. The second of painting of Lance Armstrong that was made using a tricycle. And the 3rd is from a collection he calls ''Goodbye Art.'' The art is made in a non-traditional medium and then destroyed, leaving only the video as evidence of the art creation. Really cool and amazingly unique. You can check out more at

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Infinite Knowledge at Our Fingertips

With the recent passing of Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, I started thinking about the impact that technology gurus have had on my life. I couldn’t imagine my life without the internet, or my iPhone for that matter. It has become such a vital role in our everyday lives; allowing us to do things we never could have done before. And it’s all become available instantly and in remote places through the use of cell phones.

I have immediate access to my bank account balances and information. If I hear a song I like playing over the speakers while I’m shopping I can use an app to find the name of the song and bookmark it. I can download that individual song on Napster instead of having to drive to the record store to purchase the full album. My phone beeps as soon as I receive an email and I can read immediately, which eliminates delayed response time. If I’m at work and can’t remember the dosage range for a certain drug, I can use the nursing drug handbook app on my phone to look it up immediately. I can use the GPS on my phone to guide me to unfamiliar places and if I miss my highway exit I can just re-map it from my current location (rather than having to turn around and try to get back on my original route). Access to current traffic congestion is available on my phone, which allows me to avoid traffic jams and saves me loads of time.
Even more complex tasks that otherwise would not have been feasible have become accessible to the everyday person. For example, the screen on my iPhone cracked. All I had to do was go to YouTube and I found step-by-step video instructions on how to change the screen myself. That saved me from paying upwards of $100 to have someone else fix it. Another example – the window motor on my husband’s car went out. He got online and used his credit card to find a replacement motor that was shipped to our house. Then on a forum for 350-Z enthusiasts he was able to find step-by-step instructions with pictures that allowed him to change out the motor himself. Easy. Done in 45 minutes and saved $300.
I often wonder how people went about their daily lives before this upsurge in technology. My husband said when he was a younger he saw a picture of the band Red Hot Chili Peppers. Their drummer could be Will Ferrell’s twin. He went on believing that Will Ferrell had not only acting, but musical talents for 4 months until someone told him otherwise. Had the internet been as readily available then as it is now, one quick Google search would have told him otherwise. And could you imagine writing a research paper? I couldn’t even tell you how many research papers I had to write in school and every single one of them was written using information from research databases online. My mother had to drive to the actual library, talk to librarians to find out where to look, scour the shelves for specific books, and then flip through pages to find whatever information she was looking for. So much work for so little return. What took her an hour I can now do in 10 minutes.
I guess people survived before current technology, but now that I know how awesome it is I certainly couldn’t imagine having it taken away. And here you are (possibly half way around the world from me) reading this post…all because of technology. I’d just like to say Thank You to all those people out there that have made this technology filled life of mine possible.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


Leather upholstery in cars: the upgrade. I never quite understood that. Sure, it cleans up easy should you spill something on it. But I can't really think of any other upsides to leather that you don't get with cloth. 

Now let's think about the cons of leather. When your car has been baking in the sun on a hot summer's day, leather turns to lava and burns any skin that comes into contact with it. During the winter, leather's cold chill always seems to find a way to seep through multiple layers of clothing. When your skin has been in direct contact with leather for any significant period of time, you start to sweat. And it costs significantly more. 

Upgrade? No thank you. I'll just continue to carry around a bottle of Tuff Stuff upholstery cleaner and forgo the lava seating.