The Budgetiest Bathroom

There are a couple of rooms in this casa over here that I haven’t visited via the blog in many moons.  One of those rooms is the master bathroom.  I’ve tweaked a few things here and there since the last you heard about it and I guess none of them seemed newsworthy (not like anything on this blog is though) until last week.  I added a few little somethings that made a world of a difference and it only cost me $16.  I’ll get to that in a minute.  First, let’s get up to speed by starting at the very beginning.

Here’s what the room looked like when we were touring as potential buyers:
Random 470Too much plain and too much brown, if you ask me.

DIY Plywood Countertop

The laundry room.  The phrase doesn’t exactly bring up feelings of love and longing, does it?  No, for most it hearkens feelings of being buried in mountains of cotton and polyester and lost in seas of unmatched socks.  Or maybe it’s the monotony of it all that comes up – wash this, fold it, put it away, and two days later, there it is again.  Times that by a hundred and repeat it by a thousand and four and you’ve piled a nice slice of semi-despair onto your plate.  And maybe you’re one of those people who doesn’t mind doing laundry (which also means you probably don’t have kids) so I guess maybe you can’t relate and that’s ok.  Personally, I’d rather do laundry than dishes so I guess I’ll keep my cup half full with that.  But, there’s hope.  We have recently discovered that a pretty laundry space makes doing laundry a little, a little less of a chore.  You don’t even have to spend a lot to spruce up your space.  Last weekend we crossed off something that’s been our our to-do list for years – crafting a new wood countertop to be placed over the washer and dryer.  We love how it turned out and we’ve been shaking our heads at how long we waited to do it because of how easy it was.  Of course I typed up all the details for ya in case you want to make one of your very own.

Before we pull up to the new top though, let’s do a little refresher.  Here’s the laundry corner of our laundry room, sans any sort of countertop:
IMG_2378

Friday Smorgasboard

It’s been awhile since I’ve just sat down without a tutorial mission to accomplish so let’s just go with the TGIF flow and shoot the breeze today, yes?  I mean, maybe we are basking in unfinished projects territory over here so the only finished thing I have for you are snippets?  Yep, yep, and yep. 

First and foremost, have you been following the miracle of little Joy?  Oh the glory of God!

We spent the week after Christmas trying to nurse the kids back to health from the land of RSV and ear infections…so fun.  ‘Tis the season, I guess.  Easy isn’t a word that comes to mind when I think back on that week but I can tell you that a few things that made it easier are a humidifier and our NoseFrida.  My best friend got the girls this humidifier last year and, oh my gosh, can you love something like that?  Apparently you can because I’ve fallen hard.  I’ve used my fair share of humidifiers and this is by far the easiest to operate.  By far people.  You fill it up (and drop in some essential oils if that’s your jam), set the lid on, and let it go.  When you’re done, you dump it, wipe it out, and you’re golden.  And bonus, it lights up with all these mesmerizing colors.  I highly recommend.  (On the other hand, we bought this humidifier a few years ago and, while it does what it’s supposed to do, clean up is a pain in the rear.  Thumbs down.)  And the NoseFrida…I’ve told you about this before and how great it is.  Looks gross.  Works amazingly.  It’s a must-have.

I know we are way past fall but I’ve had Lauren’s leaf art idea on my list of thing to share with you for months now.  Grab an old book, a read newspaper, or a magazine article and leaf it hanging.  ;)  Put it on your to-make list for next fall!

In the market for a rug?  I was checking out options on Amazon a few weeks ago and stumbled across these colorful beauties.  $130 for an 8 x 10?  Not too shabby!  (A few of the colors have an additional $20 shipping charge but still, that’s not bad!)  They’re pretty bold so they’d be the star in a room.  I’m eyeing the pink for the girls room.  Usually I’d be skeptical on the quality at that price but the ratings are great!

I felt super proud of myself (and even impressed chef Anthony) when I figured out an easy way to toast buns for our grilled chicken and pineapple sandwiches this week.
IMG_2373IMG_2374See them atop the toaster, turn on the toaster, and let the heat do what it does.  Easy peasy.  #hotAcrossbuns
Last but not least, you’ve read our rave review about eMeals.  Anthony calls it life-changing and I have to agree.  To add to the life-changing status, possibly elevating it to mind-blown status – Walmart grocery pick-up.  I’ve used it twice now and I am hooked.  Basically I have someone else planning my meals for me (for which we pay $5 a month) and someone else doing my grocery shopping (for free).  Before Walmart grocery, I’d either have to spend the hour or so of coveted alone time I get during the week in the grocery store…not really the best use of alone-time I can think of and quite possibly, the worst.  It was either that or running through with the kids and the limo cart and you just never know what’ll happen then because lots of little kids + one mom + public places usually = chaos.  But now, I grab the grocery list eMeals sends, plug everything into Walmart grocery (we usually use six of the seven meals, swapping out one for a staple meal) plus stuff we need for breakfast, lunch, and snacks, and drive ten minutes to have all of it brought out to my car.  Fuss-free.  So, if you’re anything like me and loathe meal planning or hate spending me-time in a grocery store when a thrift store would be so much more gratifying, you should try both of these things.  You can try eMeals free for two weeks through our referral link here and check to see if Walmart grocery pick-up is an option in your area through our refferal link here.  You won’t regret it.  Pinky swear.  (Also, I could write for sentences and sentences but I should mention that we just went over our monthly budget from last year and we spent, on average, $450 a month in groceries last year.  Maybe that’s high to you and maybe that’s low but to us, that’s pretty dang good.  Every meal we make from eMeals costs us about $10, not per person, for the entire family.  AND, 75% of the time we have leftovers to convert to the next day’s lunch.  Ok, I’ll shut up now.)
Any fun weekend plans?  It’s going to be in the 70’s and sunny here so we are going to bask in that and dig into some projects.  Anthony has Monday off so right now I’m staring down a great weekend and I kinda love it!
Peace out! Hot smile

.           .           .
*There are affiliate links included in this post  I hope you don’t mind!  I don’t write sponsored posts or review products I’ve never bought first anymore in the name of total transparency, so including links to items I’ve purchased or am thinking about purchasing is the only way I generate a commission.  Thank you for your support!
*If you use our eMeals referral link, we’ll get a month free so thank you in advance if you do!  If you use our Walmart grocery pick-up referral link, we’ll get $10 off our next order and SO WILL YOU!  Happy notgrocery shopping!

That’s a Wrap

Today I just want you to tap into your memory store and think back to the year 2016…back to the post in which I introduced this new and improved dresser:
IMG_8464
You can get all the details on its new paint job if you click here but if you want to go inside, keep reading.  I decided that adding some glam in the form of a gold dip wasn’t enough so I took it one step further and lined all of the drawers with some gold dotted wrapping paper by Sugar Paper that I found at Target for $6.  (PS, I found it in the Christmas section but I’m hoping it wasn’t just part of a Christmas collection so that anyone who wants to follow suit can go grab some!)

IMG_8468
I’ll tell you all about it, the good and the bad, but first, let me tell you how hard Sugar Paper made this decision for me.  Their papers are gorgeous!   
  IMG_1894
I choose a gold dot because I thought it would appeal to more buyers since I was going to sell the dresser but, if it were my own dresser, I probably would’ve went with the black and gold feathers on the gray backgroud (which, btw, would look amazing in Grace’s dresser) and if I we were keeping the dresser for the girls, I would’ve went with the colorful striped paper on the right.  So fun you guys!  <3

But there will always be more dresser drawers to line I’m sure, so let’s move on to the how on the current ones.

Measuring

Before you line your drawers with whatever paper you’ve got, you’ll have to measure each drawer to figure out how much paper you’ll need.  Stating the obvious, I know.  You can grab the old ruler or tape measure and write down measurements or you can do it the easy way.  :)

The easy way consists of grabbing a few sheets of computer paper, scrap paper, and/or used coloring book paper and laying it all out inside the drawer so that it overlaps, thereby making a template.
IMG_1971
Making sure the paper is covering every square inch of the bottom of the drawer, tape it all together along the seams.IMG_1972
If you have any drawers that are the same size, just make sure the template you just made fits inside all of them.  (I made this template inside the top drawer and hooray, it fit inside the next two drawers down too!) IMG_1973 Chances are, it will fit just fine.  On the rare occasion that the drawers are a smidge different, just make another template.

So easy, right?

Next, place your template on the wrapping paper, trace, and cut it out.  (Note:  Turn your template upside down and trace it on the underside of the paper so that there are no pencil/marker marks on the top of the paper that might be seen.)
IMG_1974(It helps to place something semi-heavy on top of your template as you trace to keep it from shifting, hence the ink cartridge package.)

Template (if necessary for different-sized drawers), trace, cut and repeat until you have all of the pieces of paper needed.

Papering

As far as adhering the paper to your drawer, there are a few ways to do it.  For a more temporary lining, you can just use double-sided tape at six-or-so inch intervals around the perimeter of the drawer to stick it down.  Then simply pull it up when you want a change.  For a more durable lining, I used some satin modge podge I nabbed on clearance.  IMG_2030Nevermind the sponge brush though.  I took this picture before I started which was also before I realized how much I hate sponge brushes.  Just grab a small paintbrush instead.

Ok, here’s where things got a little dicey for me.  I’m just telling you so you know what NOT to do. 

DON’T brush the modge podge onto the entire bottom of the drawer and then proceed to lay down your template. 
IMG_2031
It doesn’t matter how much painstaking effort you exert to lay out the paper so that there are no air bubbles and wrinkles, they will probably come.  Think they’ll disappear once everything dries?  Nope, think again.  And then hold back tears as you rip out and waste a beautiful piece of fairly expensive wrapping paper.
IMG_2032
So maybe that’s a little dramatic but I can assure you, the frustration was real.

Now, let’s skip over to the greener grass.  Here’s what you SHOULD DO.

Before you even think about laying the paper into the drawer, grab some clear acrylic or laquer spray and spray the back of each piece of paper.  This will form a nice barrier between the modge podge and paper; the modge podge won’t saturate the paper causing it to get all soggy and wrinkly.
IMG_2081(Random note:  I used this Krylon clear acrylic I had on hand and look how *not*clear it sprayed!  It’s a couple of years old so maybe it yellows over time when kept in the can but I guess I was just glad I wasn’t using it to spray something I wanted a clear coat on!  I didn’t have much left in this can so I also used some clear spray laquer and that was still clear despite being a couple of years old too.  Moral of the story, buy the laquer instead of the acrylic.)

I sprayed all of my pieces of paper one-by-one and then set them out flat to dry.  Once they were all dry, I went back to lining the drawers.

First, I laid the piece of paper in the bottom of the drawer so that it was exactly where it needed it to be.  Then, to hold it in place, I grabbed the kids’ pencil box (because it was the closest thing) and set it on one half of the paper to hold the whole piece in place.  IMG_2044
Next, I folded one half of the paper over so that I could brush modge podge onto one half of the drawer bottom.IMG_2045
And then I slowly folded/rolled the paper back down over the modge podge from the middle to the far edge.  It helped to grab a washcloth and rub it as I went.

See?  No wrinkles!
IMG_2046
Once that side was done, I moved the pencil box to the other side and repeated.
IMG_2047
I wish I hand one more hand to catch a video of how I did this but with the washcloth, I just rubbed up and down across the paper as I was laying it down.
IMG_2048
IMG_2049
I let all of the papered drawers dry overnight and the next day, I went in and brushed a thin layer of modge podge over the top of each piece.  I was a little nervous that this would take away the shine of the gold so I held my breath but phew!…once the modge podge dried, the paper looked just like it did pre-modge podge.

I LOVE the added beauty the lined drawers bring to the dresser!
IMG_8467TOOIt was definitely worth the extra steps to use this paper.  It’s the perfect compliment to the dresser’s paint job!  If you’re not in the mood to deal with paper to line drawers, check out this post on how to line drawers with fabric!

Also, you might remember that behind the doors on each side of the dresser, there are a couple of shelves that I set storage baskets on.
IMG_8469
I made paper templates and cut out wrapping paper to line the shelves with but then I decided against papering them.  I was too afraid that, when sliding in the baskets, the paper at the front edge of the shelf might catch on the basket being slid and rip. 

But then I had those rectangles of paper laying around.  I could’ve saved them to wrap small presents but instead I stuck one inside our to-do list frame
IMG_8480
…and the three others went into the three frames hanging in the living room, specifically because I thought they’d be pretty behind the wreaths I hung on each for Christmas.
IMG_8472
Which brings me to a tangent…Christmas decor.  The weeks leading up to Christmas were super busy here so not much seasonal decorating happened here.  :(

The plans I had to make Gianna a stocking never happened.
IMG_8475And thankfully she’s too young to care this year anyway. 

The rest of the decor was quick and simple.

I had a hankering to hang wreaths on the picture frames mentioned above so I grabbed some faux garland from the dollar store, unwrapped it to ruffle it up a little, and then wrapped it back up into a wreath shape.
IMG_2144
Then I grabbed some red glittery ribbon I also got at the dollar store and hung those wreaths. IMG_8474
I also used some of the leftover strips of paper to disguise this almost-empty candle as a vase:
IMG_8476
I’ve still got a small piece left and I’m thinking I might wrap a book with it.  It’s really hard to toss pretty pieces of leftover paper, ya know?  Haha! 

Anyway, that’s my drawer plus wrapping paper experience.  Have you ever lined anything with wrapping paper or any other paper?  If so, how’d you come out in the wrinkle department?  Maybe it was just me or maybe you had the same problem.  And maybe you’ve never lined any drawers but are now eyeing all the dresser in the house.  I know I am.  ;) 

Happy New Year folks!  I hope it’s been a good one so far!

*post includes affiliate links

.           .           .


IMG_8467