Happy New Year!

One of my favorite things is New Years Resolutions. I love lists, and a list for the whole year always helps me commit. I usually see changes come from my New Years Resolutions lists. And I’m ready for some serious change! I’ve been thinking a lot the past month about what’s important for me to accomplish, and what I want to change about myself. I found a great article that included many of the ideas that have been circling around in my head. You can link to it here http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/marcia-sirota/new-years-resolutions_b_1166042.html. The whole list is great, but certain ones I want to stop..

Avoidance – Come take a little gander through my house. Unfinished projects everywhere. And while I have gotten much better at finishing what I start, I am not going to start anymore projects until all my unfinished, or broken projects are complete.

Having a Bad Attitude – It may just be that I’m three months pregnant, but I need to focus everyday on having a good attitude, and appreciating the moment.

Complaining – Kinda the same thing. But I’m healthy, I have a great family, my husband is a hottie, we have a home, a great neighborhood and family.. what do I really have to complain about?

Gossiping – I’ve already been trying to stop, but I have to admit.. The other night I really wanted to tell a friend something that had happened earlier that day. It was a story about an acquaintance, and it wouldn’t be a story I’d really want shared about me. It wasn’t horrible, it wasn’t untrue, but it wasn’t nice. That’s one of the first times I’ve really felt myself talking myself out of it questioning myself what good it would do. I really did feel proud to stop myself, and maybe a little more grown up.

Co-Dependency – I have been thinking a lot about if I could provide for three kids if something were ever to happen to Jesse. I don’t work, and I never finished college.. Time to step up and make sure I could take care of my family if needed. That’s my biggest goal this year. Plus.. I would love to be able to buy Jess surprises without him knowing I spent the money first.

Those are some of the ideas from the article.. Here are some of my personal thoughts..

Be a better mom – Have more fun with the things that already should be done.. Have my kids help cook.. Do more art projects with my kids.. take them new places.. take more pictures.. Be patient.. my kids are pretty sweet and they’re growing quick. Blog more about them.

Be a better cook – Jess has me beat on this one.. I know it’s in my genes (from Grandma Shirley.. not Donna), I just need to give it the effort.

Get better at the things I love – Photography, Writing, Painting, and singing. I want to improve all these things in the next year.

Get Organized – I’m going to start by throwing stuff out.

Budget – Waste less, Save more.

Jess & Me- Go out more.. but different restaurants and different things than movies. I love my date nights.

And of course, Blog more of what I’m up to. I’m really going to try.

Curious.. am I the only one who loves New Years Resolutions?

Happy Halloween!

Yikes that’s a bird-tastic crew. My little Bauer has never willingly dressed up for Halloween (he’s only three.. but still). In September, I started asking him about what he would like to be. I gave him all kinds of suggestions that I thought would appeal to him including cars, trains, spongebob, etc. He turned me down to all of them. Out of nowhere a few days later, he said to me “Mom. I know what I want to be. A big, red angry bird.” I laughed thinking how funny it was for him to come up with that. Somehow, one turned into four (plus two other misc costumes I had already made) and boom. Look at Aunt Sharon as mad a bird as could be.

Epic Love Poster

I am constantly inspired by Pinterest, and this latest project was taken from an awesome poster I re-pinned originally from a site called www.notonthehighstreet.com .. but I knew this was something I could easily make myself in photoshop.

This is how mine will look once printed..

Ah, we’re so in love.

It was really simple, I just put it together in photoshop and used margins.. using a text box per couple.

So I’ll post a new picture once it’s printed and in it’s oh so vintage frame. My bedroom is almost all the way put together!

DIY Fall Beaded Bracelet

I’ve been making a lot of jewelry lately. I mean, a LOT. My mom is kind of demanding and orders me around like Cinderella to put together her own custom accessories. She’s a bit of a diva. I’m hoping that maybe if I share how I make this dangle beaded bracelet she will read this tutorial and make one of her own. Who am I kidding.. But maybe this will be of interest to someone! If that’s you, read on.

This particular bracelet is much more autumn looking than the pictures leave you to believe. It’s got pretty golds and turquoises-not the mardi gras type feel you’re seeing here. If you jump to the bottom of my post, you’ll see the same style bracelet with different beads.

This is what you’ll need:

Tools: Needle Nose Pliers


Side Cutters

These are available at any craft store.

Supplies: You can find all of these at a craft store. I like Michael’s the most for Beads.

One Clasp- I prefer the lobster clasp shown because sometimes the cute toggles undo on your wrist.. you don’t want all this hard work to just fall off!

Chain- Enough to fit your wrist. I show to different kinds in my pic.. you want a medium size..

Head pins with Ball Ends-You will need 50 of these (more if you want a chunkier bracelet than shown) You can use plain head pins also, but I like the ball because it does a good job of not letting most beads fall off, and it also is a prettier finished look.

Assorted Beads- 80ish. I like to do some pins with two beads, you can do more or less. What beads should you choose? I’ll tell ya in a sec..

Silver spacers-Optional.. depending on the look you want. The silver spacers just add a little bit extra if you want a little more flash. You can also find the spacers, the pins, the chain and the clasp in gold if that’s what you want.

The first thing that I do is attach the clasp to the chain. Make sure to try it on before you start beading, the clasp can add a good amount of length, and you don’t want the bracelet falling off your wrist, but you don’t want it too tight. Here’s two different examples of chain.. they would both work find for this bracelet.

When making this style bracelet, I like to put all my beads on the pins before I start attaching them to the chain.

When choosing your beads:

It’s important to know what style of bracelet you want. If you want a more messy look like the one I’m demonstrating, find varying sizes and shapes. Also this style looks really good with varying finishes (shiny, matte, etc) I was going for a metallic look with this one, so I chose all glitzy.

If you want something a little more clean like the pearl bracelet at the bottom of the post, choose beads in uniform shape and similar size.

If you are feeling clueless on what colors to choose, take a piece of printed clothing that you love and draw from that.

I start by putting the largest group evenly first. Don’t get too worked up on spacing it exact. Just trust your eye, once more beads go on you won’t be able to tell they’re not perfect.. promise!

I chose this bead group next since it was so similar in color to the first group. And again, you just place and don’t sweat it.

If you don’t know how to attach a head pin, this link can help:

My advice is to always twist the pin. Some like to clip it and just bend a small part over, but when you twist it, your bead is not going to ever fall off unless it breaks. If you’ve never done this before, you will pick it up after a few tries.

Starting to get a little more full. Maybe you really like the look how it is now.. this bracelet has roughly 22 pins in it.

Adding another group..

Suddenly getting chunkier..

and boo yah..

you’re ready to be the belle of the ball.

Another example of the same bracelet, different beads:

The pearls in this make it a little more dainty and clean.

Thanks for visiting! Let me know if you have any questions!

Refinished Hutch Yo Diggity

I finally decided to work on this hutch, and I have to say.. it’s my favorite piece of re-done furniture.

I’m a huge fan of grey and gold combos right now, so I used some leftover muddy grey Behr Premium in perfect taupe. I have been spray painting furniture like crazy lately, and thought I would give my head a little break from inhaling it. Also, my pointer finger is a little bit tired. But the good news is my garage is slowly getting cleared out! The goal is to be able to actually park a car in there. I know, high expectations, but Jess and I are really driven… After I finished the grey, I antiqued it with black antiquing glaze from Lowe’s. But after the glaze, I decided to add a metallic gold glaze from Martha Stewart’s collection at Home Depot over the other layers. On the inside of the hutch, I sprayed it with gold metallic spray paint from Krylon. It just might be my favorite.

Come back to see how to make super easy ruffle pillows!

Cause my friends are smokin’

So I have some pretty decent looking friends. Like, they’re up there on a scale from one to ten. I love it when they ask me to take pictures of them because we always have so much fun. Recently, different projects have come up for them to need a few pics, and here’s a little taste!
Here’s my fav from Dana’s shoot..

Love the chairs! And if you knew Dana, this backdrop just works for her!

Another fav.. I like how the edit turned out for this guy..

Meet Jessica, one of my most favorite roommates of all time.. We had an adventure finding this spot, but once we found a way in we had our own enchanted fortress..

Here’s my fav of her for the day..

Love the light..

Thanks for being gorgeous! Love you gals.

Photobooth It Up!

So we pretty much have an awesome neighborhood. I do have to specify…Of the whole block, I live on the coolest street, but the surrounding area is cool as well. When Jess and I were looking to buy a house, this one was the only one where all the neighbors came out to talk to us as we were looking. They invited us to their block party right off the bat. Needless to say, it has been a tradition on our street over the years, and this year expanded to the rest of the actual “block”. We had neighbors who rented a water slide, a rock climbing wall, a magician, and had an awesome band play. I had to pitch in somehow.. I figured these little photo booths with props are all the rage, and who am I to turn down a trend?

I look at myself and I think.. I would’ve made a fugly man..

Rockin’ the paper beard!

Yeah, you read it right. Bomb.com

Love the extra hand.. Brian demanded too many props and then proceeded to demand an assistant..

Love it!

Don’t let the group scare you off! There are currently homes for sale.. Just sayin’..

If you are thinking about doing a photobooth, Do it!! It’s super easy! I just found a fun large piece of fabric to hang on a fence. The props are all cut out of paper, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t do it an hour before the party. Think of how cute they could be if you didn’t procrastinate! I just looked up ideas on pinterest and etsy. These were some of the ones I used as my inspiration:

A word of advice is to keep your sticks on the side. Some of them I taped right in the middle not thinking about the fact the stick would be placed in the middle of the person’s face. Probably most people would think about it, but not me. Check it out, you can learn from my dumb mistakes. I used barbecue skewers and cardstock and just cut freehand. The kids loved this, and it was a lot of fun. I will definitely be doing it again.

Do it at your next party! Tell me how it went!

to a sPaRkLy juLy: music mix

I always have to make my music mixes for different occasions.. and it doesn’t take much for something to be an “occasion” for me. I thought I’d share my July mix with ya.. and if ya like it, let me know and I’ll keep sharing different mixes. If you don’t like my sweet Indie/Pop/Oldies taste then I apologize.. but not really.

For me, a July mix should be summer nights and summer drives fun that you can see yourself listening to while you watch fireworks and eat salt water taffy..

Hope you enjoy!

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

Come back tomorrow to see my oh-so-cute 4th of July goody bags!

My Gorgeous Gals

Here’s a little preview of our trip to the local orchard. This local orchard just happened to be full of long, wet grass that rocked my allergen world.. like no allergen ever has. I had a Hitch moment when my face and eyes got super swollen and my legs welted and were covered in hives. I learned my lesson… getting older=worse allergies. Also.. if your face and legs are swelling, go home and get out of the way of anyone with a camera-yeah, I’m talking to you, Marielle!!

I have been called to the Young Women in my ward longer than I was in Young Women’s, myself.. and I love it. We thought it would be fun to get some cute pics of the girls before girls’ camp.

Love the apple trees..
Such a cute smile!
Times two!
Times three!
This one’s got the photoshoot down.. Seriously!
Love this one!
So photogenic!

“Ah, You girls just keep me young. I just love you so much.”
– Mean Girls quote… but you already knew that.