Library Full of Books

I have been yearning to have a library my entire life and when we bought our new house I knew that this Sitting Room off of our bedroom would do the trick.

Before Photo
Before Photo
Before Photo
My husband and I borrowed my In-laws mini-van over the weekend and headed to our "local" Ikea (actually 1 1/2 hours away) in search of Expedit storage systems.  After writing down all of the locations of the various units we wanted, we headed down to the warehouse and began loading up our cart full of very heavy boxes.  Then disaster struck.  Ikea was completely out of the 5x5 Expedit system in white.  I had my heart set on the white for our library and after a few tears (pregnancy hormones for sure) I decided that the birch option would work just fine.  I think that it was just a shock to my pregnant self that they didn't have what I wanted and I just needed to sit on the idea of something different and let it sink in for a few minutes before really making up my mind.  By thoughtful (and rational) husband even offered to drive up again to by the white unit when it is back in stock, but, tearful as I was, I realized that was a silly thing to make him do.  The birch unit went right on our cart and away we went.

Alphabetizing like crazy!

It's a tree house, not a fort!
We put the unit together the next day while our son napped and were pleased that it didn't really take that long.  Next came the fun part for me.  We pulled all of my many boxes of books out of storage and I began alphabetizing them.

Logan liked making a "tree house" out of the newly emptied boxes.  I have no idea why he insisted it was a tree house and not a fort.  Look below for the finished room...

I'm really happy with the final result.  I can already tell that I need to evaluate the size of my book collection as there is no room for growth at this point, but I'll worry about that later!  We stacked two units for a higher bookcase and anchored the unit to the wall for safety.  Logan has already added a few of his books to the library which I think is super adorable.


Easy Cork Board Initials

I saw an easy DIY guide on Design Sponge for making a map cork board.  I thought about makign a map board of Indiana for all of 5 seconds and then decided that there wasn't anything interesting about a rectangular cork board, so I opted to create my initials out of cork board that I happened to have from a while ago.

I did change up how I made these (versus Design Sponge's directions):
  1. Use Microsoft Word to create a large scaled outline of your initials and print on regular paper.
  2. Use double stick tape to temporarily adhere template to cork board.
  3. Cut along your template line with a precision blade like X-Acto to get a clean cut.
  4. Pull off the template and hang the cork board.( I used leftover double stick foam tape from old command strip hooks.)
This project took me all of about 10 minutes to complete.
    via Design Sponge

    You can see that my board isn't as creative as Design Sponge's, but I'm pleased with the result!


    Crib Sheets Galore!

    I must be in serious nesting mode, because over the course of the last few days I have managed to knock out another Pinterest DIY project by making, not one, but two crib sheets for the nursery.
    After browsing on the internet for months to find crib sheets that would complement the teal wall color in the nursery (you can see the sneak peek above).  I, finally, gave up and discovered this easy to follow tutorial on Pinterest.  Click on the image below to learn how to make your own crib sheets.

    via Pinterest/dana-made-it.com
     I purchased 2 different fabrics and elastic at Walmart for a total of $16.  That means my cost per sheet was only $8 which easily beats all but the most basic crib sheets out there.  I decided to choose colors that would compliment the teal walls and a pattern that would be a bit more fun and less cutesy than teddy bears and puppy dogs.  I did measure my mattress before cutting any fabric and discovered that I needed to add about an inch to the length of my sheets after looking at the tutorial.The first sheet took me 1 1/2 hours to create because I had a bit of a sewing machine issue (easily fixed once I knew what the heck was going on).  The second sheet took me only an hour to complete with the longest portion of the process being the threading of the elastic through the perimeter of the sheet. 

    The aqua sheet is completed and ready for washing next to my sewing machine.  You can see my, not so neat, work space above that is located in our large storage room over the garage.  It is in definite need of a makeover.  The walls have never even been painted!


    Library- Bit of a Makeover

    I like books, a lot.  I have boxes of books in our storage room waiting to find a home and I have the perfect spot, just no shelves to put them on.  We've been in our house for about 9 months now and those books have been very patient.  Their wait is about to end as we're planning a trip to Ikea this weekend to pick up some Expedit bookshelves (like the images below).

    via Pinterest

    via Pinterest
    The perfect spot is in our Sitting Room/ Library off of our Master bedroom, shown below.  I would love wall to wall with a built-in look, but door and window locations in the room make this impossible.  Vent locations in the floor mean that I need to keep my distance from books, as well.

    (The bookshelves will go where the couch is currently shown- with the crazy kid)
    We are going to buy the 5x5 unit and a 1x5 unit and stack them.  I want to go for a floor to ceiling look and I can't wait to organize my books on them.  Now I need to figure out how to organize...by genre, author, or color.  Hard decisions need to be made!


    Sources for Free Stuff and Deals

    This is a tiny bit out of character for my usual posts, but people keep asking me where I get some of my shopping deals and free stuff, so I thought I would share the wealth. These are all sites that I use on a regular basis.  I'll try to keep this updated, too; it will save me the trouble of emailing the list to people as it keeps getting longer and longer!

    Money Back from Shopping:

    1. Ebates- By far the best and easiest way to earn money back when you are already planning on purchasing something online.  Go to their site first, search for your retailer and click on the "Shop Now" button.  It will automatically credit your account and pay you quarterly for the money you have earned.  This is a great site, because it has promotions frequently with increased cash back and lists a lot of relevant coupons for retailers on their site page.  The real bonus is that you get $5 for signing up here.*
    2. Slick Deals- Comprehensive site that lists all of the best shopping deals going on across the web.  Users rank the deals and Slick Deals lists the highest ranked deals on their home page.  You can, also, search for a store or particular item and it will list any deals that might be happening.  I check this website before I buy anything online as it points me to the best deals.  Check it out here.

    Free Stuff:
    1. Bzz Agent lets you take brief surveys to see if you qualify for their product campaigns and then invites you to participate.  They send you free full size products and coupons to pass around with the intention that you will talk to friends and family about the new product and spread the bzz.  There is an additional short survey at the end of each campaign.  I get a lot of free stuff by participating with Bzz Agent every year and  probably participate in about 12 campaigns a year by trying out food, toiletries, makeup, and cleaning supplies for free.  Sign up here.
    2. Vocal Point-  The site has free full size stuff to try on a regular basis and all they ask is that you review the item by giving them a little feedback while talking to your friends about the products.  It's quick and easy and they send you emails letting you know when they have a new product to try.  Their "try and tells" include anything shampoo, beverages, to new movies on tv.  Check out the site here.
    Swap Sites:

    1. thredUP- A swapping site for gently used kids clothes, books, and toys.  You post a box and if it's picked you send it out for free with ThredUPs postage.  If you find a box you like, you pick it and pay $5 (+ shipping) and it is sent right to your door.  I ordered a box and it came within the week packed full of name brand and gently used clothes for my son.  You get $5 for clicking the button below and joining.*
    Accept This Invitation

    Blogs Promoting Free Stuff & Discounts:
    I suggest subscribing to these blogs to never miss out on their deals.
    1. Freebies 4 Mom- She posts links to free stuff daily and, also, posts about discounts, giveaways, and sweepstakes.  Her blog is great and really compiles everything for you if you want to get lots of free stuff in the mail.  Check out her blog here.
    2. Baby Cheapskate- This is geared towards someone with kids and highlights deals on products, samples, and ways to save when raising children.  Great resource if you're looking to buy some big ticket items and want to find a deal.  Check out her blog here.  (PS: She let me guest post on her blog about my son, Logan's nursery a while back, see it here.)
    3. Money Saving Mom- An excellent source for coupons, discounts, frugal shopping tips, and free stuff.  Check out her blog here.
    4. Coupon Connections- Very comprehensive site listing coupons and deals for groceries and big box retailers.  Tips on how to use coupons to their full advantage and retailer policies are, also, included. Check out her blog here.
    1. Pinecone Research-  This survey site only opens up its panel to new people a few times a year.  If you are interested in joining, I would suggest looking at this website and seeing if you can join yet.  They pay $3 a survey and frequently send free products to try.  I just received a jumbo sized package of Pampers Diapers a month ago to test.
    2. Synovate-  Research site that sends you qualifying surveys and then products to try.  There are follow up surveys after you have used the products and then they pay you $3 to $200 a survey.  Some of the surveys can be lengthy, but I have been compensated $200 for an extensive survey before so that makes it worth it to me. Try it here.
    *I get compensated for referring people to denoted sites.


    Jump on the Trend

    Forward facing book shelves have been popping up everywhere as a great addition to kids rooms.  I like them because they make it easy to grab an eye-catching book and give you a break from tilting your head sideways to read the countless thin spines of kids' books.

    I thought I would join the trend and add a few to the new nursery. I used the following as inspiration.

    via ESD

    via ohdeedoh
     I like the idea of multiple rows, but I wanted to make sure anyone could reach them, so I'm limiting the shelves to 3 and keeping them down to kid height.  I found the perfect 4'-0" long white shelves here and they are sitting at my house itching to be installed. (One thing at a time, Robin!)  We opted to not make our own as I wanted something durable and I have enough projects to complete as it is.  Ennospace had the adjacent shelves in white and black and can be found here.

    Our crib was put together last night in the nursery, with my son's help, so things are really starting to happen!


    Pinterest- Chalkboard Globe Completed!

    On my previous post I talked about completing a project from Pinterest to meet the Young House Love Pinterest Challenge.  I met the challenge head on and completed the project on time (in spite of our house guests this weekend)!  I have to say that setting deadlines and making a public challenge is a great way to get things accomplished.

    You can see my inspiration in the previous post here.  I quite happy with how it turned out.  It was easy enough to do:

    1.  Removed globe and used spray paint cap to elevate it in a spray box.
    2.  Used chalkboard spray paint to apply thin coats of paint.
    3.  Used a silver spray paint to update the globe pedestal a bit.
    4.  Put it back together again.

    My husband was dubious about covering up the vital geographic information, but I reasoned that the names change on countries so quickly anyways that it would probably be out of date in a few years time.  We already owned all of the spray paint, so the only cost for this project was the $1 globe.

    Before Photo

    After Photo
    Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...