Our Family Unit
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  • September6th

    Homeschooled: How American Homeschoolers Measure Up
    Source: TopMastersInEducation.com

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  • August19th

    burlap roman shade-1

    I love the look of burlap, I hate the look of mini blinds.  Finally, I figured out how to solve both problems at once.

    burlap roman shade-2

    My mom helped me with a little DIY project that I had been procrastinating on when she visited in July.  A burlap roman shade to cover the mini blinds in our dining room.  I LOVE how it turned out, and since it was SO simple, I thought I’d share how to do it.

    If you rent your home, rather than own it; more than likely you are stuck with the standard mini blinds hung from every window in the house.  Now you could take them down and try to store them somewhere and rehang them when you leave, or you could try to talk to the landlord about installing something better, but you might want to try this option instead.  It keeps the mini blinds in tact, providing shade, privacy and a happy landlord…but it also makes the room feel much more homey and you can customize it to your decorating style.

    burlap roman shade-6

    I cut a piece of burlap to the size of my window, actually to the exact width and about 2″ longer, and ironed it flat.  See how to cut burlap in a straight line here.  Then I folded the top down approximately 2″ to give me a finished edge and used Wonder Under to hold the folded strip down.  I attached a strip of mounting tape to the back of that fold and then fastened the top of my curtain directly onto the mini blinds front facing panel.  This gave me a nice, straight, finished top.

    burlap roman shade-7

    Then we used a needle and thread to tie the burlap to the actual strings of the mini blind.  Once on each side and then again in the middle, making sure to carefully count how many slats were between each fold.  For my curtain, we tied it at the bottom and four additional times at equally spaced intervals.  We didn’t have to take the blinds down to do this, although I’m sure it looked a bit awkward as we tried to fit between the window and the shade looking for the needle in the burlap sack.

    burlap roman shade-3

    Doing it this way allows you to still use the mini blind just like before.  When it is down, it looks likes a curtain, but when the blind is pulled up, the burlap poofs out and folds like a Roman shade.  I especially like the look of the contrast between the curtain and the lace doily table runner.  (More on the jar of popsicle sticks later)

    This, {read with Rob Lowe’s voice} literally, could not be an easier curtain.  Tape, needle, thread, fabric – that’s it!


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  • August15th

    For those of you who follow me on Pinterest, you may have noticed my recent obsession with living rooms.  Specifically, living rooms with a Rustic Industrial touch.

    pipe bookshelf

    Side note: Can I just tell you how excited I was when I finally realized that was an actual style!  My dad’s been calling my taste “Industrial Trash Bin” for years, and come to find out, he wasn’t that far off the mark.  ;)

    Back to the living rooms…I really want to revamp ours.  We’ve lived here 5 years, and although I love the things I’ve managed to do (reupholstering the garage sale chair and the Craigslist chair, the slip-cover for the couch, the frame wall), it’s the stuff I haven’t done that’s driving me crazy.  So, I’m looking for inspiration… Requirements so far:

    • Cowhide rug – the rancher’s daughter in me NEEDS it

    • Industrial / Unique lighting

    Jeroen van der Spek (eclectic vintage industrial rustic kitchen}

    • Lots of crazy drawers – my all time favorite furniture from Germany is probably out of reach, but a girl can dream…

    My hope is that with a little paint, creativity and a trip to IKEA, I could do my own version.

    IKEA PS 2012 Chest with 5 drawers/1 door IKEA Made of solid wood, which is a durable and warm natural material.

    • Finally, antlers.  Kyle has a couple pair from his grandfather, and I am just ACHING to paint them!

    Thoughts?!   Send me your ideas…

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  • August2nd

    Lus 35th bday-6

    This July has been a  month of family, which has been such awesome!  Especially since it’s so rare to get family all the way out to Cali.  The month started with Grandma Carol and Mike visiting for the 4th and celebrating Woody’s birthday, then Mom came out when Kyle traveled to Canada, then ALL of my family came out for a week up in the Sierra Nevada mountains, and finally my sister and her new hubby came to stay!

    Lus 35th bday-1

    It was great getting to know Ric better.  Technically, I’d only met him twice before (once when he proposed to her at Christmas, and then again at the wedding) so it was nice to finally get some time to just hang out and go beyond the surface.

    Lus 35th bday-7

    Of course, it was amazing to hang out with my sister.  She and I are pretty opposite in most things and eleven years apart, but we still are very close.  There’s just nothing quite like a sister, ya know?  She’s just great…we made some totally cute headbands for her, me and Jessie (see her photo above) and she and Ric babysat the kids one day so Kyle and I could go perfume shopping and plus, she’s just great company!  Not only that, she went ALL OUT to celebrate my birthday!

    Lus 35th bday-5

    Lucky for me, she’s a chef.  So I got the royal treatment with food, but she also did a whole fiesta theme with decorations, a scavenger hunt and gave me a pedicure/coffee/shopping trip while she babysat AGAIN!

    Lus 35th bday-2

    Lus 35th bday-4

    Lus 35th bday-3

     Ric not only put up with it all, he willingly jumped in to make it a great day!  And it was – totally relaxing and absolutely fun!

    Lus 35th bday-8

     Thanks Sis – for a fabulous 35th birthday but also for being such an incredible friend.  I love you and I miss you already!

    Lus 35th bday-9

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