Happy Birthday, Dad!

Today is my dad's birthday!
Dad --
I'm so appreciative and thankful for your leadership and for the excellent example of generosity you display to everyone around you. You're truly one-of-a-kind and I'm blessed to have you as my daddy. I hope on this day you feel special and loved! Happy Birthday, Dad!

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Turning a rental property into a home: living room drapes

Design dilemma: See these blinds? Behind them is a sliding glass door that leads to.....NOWHERE! It's the strangest thing!

It corresponds with the black railing you can see above the garage. The vertical blinds definitely leave something to be desired, but must stay per our rental agreement.
I've never sewn window treatments, but after a quick chat with my talented Aunt Dana regarding drapes, I decided to go for it. To start, I purchased a window panel from Pier 1 that was on clearance. I cut it in half, then sewed the halves together end-to-end for one long panel. I cut off the tabs that were on the curtain and made them into loops on the top of the panel.
The panel had a lining that had to be removed since I cut it in half.
I pinned...and pinned...and pinned the edges and the tabs where they needed to go. I also pinned some cute decorative trim to finish the valence out -- but was 14" short. Nice. Measure twice and cut once. Should have listened to that piece of advice.

Luckily, Hobby Lobby had the same trim (originally purchased at Hancocks), so I was able to finish sewing on the trim. I found these at hobby lobby. I seriously have NO IDEA what they really are, but I found them in the door knob aisle. The square plate screws into the wall, and the decorative part screws on and off of the spindle. They were perfect for this project.
Sean measured for me and installed the bases on the wall, halfways between the top of the door and the ceiling. I had 6 hooks, so they ended up being about 15.5" apart. I then slipped each of the tabs onto the spindle and screwed on the decorative part of the hardware. There was about 24" in between each tab to allow for the draping of fabric between the hooks. The first tabs on each side were 12" from the end.
I think I really like it! I question whether or not I got the proportions right, but it works for now and definitely warms up the area. I'll get some pictures of the whole room once it's clean, lol.

New series: Turning a rental property into a home

Renting is still the right option for us. Although I hate the idea of spending hundreds of dollars a month and not building any equity, we're neither financially nor life season stable enough to buy a house. Alas, at least the next two years of our life will be in a rental home.
Renting provides unique challenges for decorating. Often painting is not an option, there's always a looming reminder of it's transitory nature, and budget constraints are ever present. Each of these challenges combined is leading to my new blog series: Turning a rental property into a home. I'll share with you come of my sewing and craft projects for the home, as well as other inspirational ideas for inexpensive and creative ways to make your house feel more like a home. Join me on my journey through thrift shops, Pier 1 sales, and the aisles of Hobby Lobby as I help build our new home on the cheap. For the readers of this blog who prefer clothing crafts, I'm sure some of those will be peppered in as well. :)

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Aruba is beautiful!

It's official. I've fallen off the blog bandwagon. In the past month I've graduated, moved to a new state, started a new job, and traveled out of the country. I seriously feel so blessed, but there has been little to no time for blogging. I promise to hop back on the wagon ASAP.

We just got back last night from Aruba --- SO much fun! Sean and I enjoyed being together, just the two of us for this vacation. The awesome scenery didn't hurt, either. Here are some pictures from our trip:
Eagle Beach -- right in front of our hotel.
We rented a landrover for the day and Sean took us offroading on the north shore of the island.
Dinner at Pinchos -- a restaraunt out on the pier.
We spent a lot of time at the beach. Isn't Sean cute?! :)
Remember that cute turquoise one piece swimsuit I blogged about earlier? I forgot it! Figures...
We caught some pretty amazing sunsets!
And some pretty amazing speedos as well...lol
These are just a few of the hundred we took. If you're my Facebook friend you can see all of them there.
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Zipper crazy

I think the zipper trend is either a love it or hate it one. I personally happen to love it -- in moderation, of course. Below are a few examples of the exposed zipper trend and a quick project I did.


To get my zipper fix in a quick and inexpensive way, I bought a tank from Wal Mart for $5 {it's in fact the miley cyrus brand, lol}, cut up the middle then sewed a chunky black zipper in.

I hate the top with these leggings {just look at my apprehensive fake smile!} , but we've packed most of my clothes and my options were limited.

I got these super cute sandals at Macys on sale.

Some inexpensive ways to participate in what I'm sure will be a fast-fading trend. :)

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We made it to Arkansas! This was my view for our 6 hour drive:
{excellent gas mileage behind the big truck, though}
The heroes of the move were:
My husband, the truck driver
Magic erasers --- HOW DO THEY WORK??!!
Unfortunately, we still have rooms that look like this.
We LOVE what we've seen of Fayetteville so far! Things seem pretty relaxed and the city has a good community 'vibe' to it. Other bonuses: 2 Hobby Lobby's, HUGE Goodwill stores and a Hancock fabric store.

  More pics of our new home to come. After rooms stop looking like the above picture. :)
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