April 2013 archive

Favorite Pins of the Week…




 The DIY Village did this awesome jute wrapped drum shade.  And you know me… A total sucker for awesome lighting… This is no exception!



Good Ideas for You did a tutorial on how to age new galvanized metal using vinegar!  Who knew??



We’re painting our PINK house FINALLLLLLLLY this Spring!  Can I get a HURRAY?!?!  Anyway…. I’m kinda digging this color combo.  Whatcha think??



I’ve been working on yard work the last couple days… (My pregnant hips hate me!) And have a flower bed started in the corner by the street.  HOPEFULLY Handsome Man has time to truck the dirt in SOON!  Anyway… I’ll totally be utilizing this tip from The Homestead Survival to kill the grass!



This lovely eye-candy from On Sutton Place is totally making my heart go pitter-patter! Love.



Is this not the most adorable thing ever??!  Give kids their own flower bed that they are responsible for while you work in the yard. Awww!



Brilliant, no??  Tension rod for all the cleaners in spray bottles. All that usually unused space??  So smart!



I want to curl up here and stay forever.  You’ve simply got to check out the rest of this beach house. *Sigh*



I must try this recipe. It’s supposed to taste just like Panera’s mac and cheese.  And everyone knows Panera’s mac and cheese is heaven in a bowl. Like best mac and cheese ever made.  It’s true. Live Laugh Lynea has the recipe to awesomeness!


This? Makes me snicker.

The OTHER side!

You know me.  I love a good free roadside find!!
My Bathroom vanity?  Discarded on someone’s lawn and free!
The architectural piece that used to be an outdated clock?  In a pile of junk on someone’s curb. Free!
This dresser I keep in the livingroom? Neighbor’s curb.  Free!
So yeah… I love me some free curbside finds.
Here’s the thing… RARELY do I fnd myself on the other end.  If I want it gone, it’s either something I’m going to sell on craigslist or it’s so bad that I throw t away.
But when I bought these dressers, the chest of drawers came with an enormous mirror and whole back shelf thing to it.  It just wasn’t going to work anywhere here… and I didn’t think it was probably something that was worth the time selling on craigslist… And it was kinda big to throw away very easily…   So Handsome Man said, “Let’s put a FREE sign on it by the street!”  I laughed, agreed, and made the sign.
Yes, I know… I’ll probably regret it leaving next week when I find some awesome Pinterest project that uses big bulky dresser mirrors!!
Anyway… First… The neighbor kids got home from school and started on their almost daily bike rides…  I was working on the computer so I didn’t look, but  could hear them… It went something like…
Cute Kid 1: “OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!   LOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!   I WANT THAT!!!!”
Cute Kid 2: “Why do you want THAT??!?!”
Cute Kid 1: “I just want it!  It’s FREEEEEEEEE!!!!!”
Cute Kid 2: “Where would you put it?”
Cute Kid 1: “I dunno.  In my room maybe??  Here!  Help me carry it!
*A fair amount of grunting and groaning ensued*
Cute Kid 2: “It’s too heavy.”
Cute Kid 1: “Go put your bike down!”
*More grunting and groaning*
Cute Kid 1: “I guess it’s too heavy.  Let’s go get our bikes again.”
*Happy squeels for the next hour as they ride their bikes up and down the street… Apparently forgetting all about their unclaimed “treasure.”*
Over 3 hours later, I notice it’s still there.  Bummer… Apparently neighbor kids are going to be the only ones interested.  As I work scrubbing down my newly purchased dressers, I hear a car door slam outside… Then another door.  “Hmmm… That’s odd.  It sounds like they parked out beside the house where we usually park.  I pulled my ever more pregnant self up to look out the window just in time to see a young couple scurrying towards that roadside jewel.  They hurridly picked it up and hauled it back to their car.  This is where their problems began.
You see, their car?  It was a very small car.  They popped the trunk and attempted to push it in at a diagonal.  “Not that way guys!” I mentally encouraged them. The rotated it as if I had telepathically helped them.  But alas… It still didn’t fit. SO close!
I was cheering them on from my view from inside!  They rotated it again another half turn… But no luck.  They tried tipping it upwards and leaning it against the upright trunk lid. “Ooooooh no!!! That seems iffy!!!”  Lady must have thought so too because as they slowly let go it suddenly fell and she caught it just in time.  “Whew! Close one!”
At this point, they were still laughing.  I was glad of that! 🙂  As they stood there surveying the situation, Guy had an idea!  The back seat he motioned.  Lady looked skeptical.  Really skeptical, actually.  😉  She carried one end while he carried the other nonetheless to the back seat of the car.
  I was stll rooting for them from inside… Admittedly, while I laughed hysterically.  This kind of thing happens to ME!!!  It was hilarous watching someone ELSE do it!
With a failed attempt in the back seat, they carry it to the trunk again.  They talk a bit then Lady gets on her phone.  I’m guessing calling someone with a truck?  She talks for a minute… Then gets a little louder in appearant fustraition… Then louder… Then finally hung up the phone in disgust.  I’m gonna guess that whoever she called did not want to come out at 7:00 pm to pick up a free dresser mirror.  They try it in the trunk again.  This way… That way… Stll no luck.
Guy tips it up again, tells Lady to hold it, and scurries headlong into the back seat.  “Whaaaaaat?  This is a new one!  I haven’t seen this one before!!!” I thought as I began laughing again.  I only laughed harder when I saw his head peeking out of the trunk.  He had crawled in the back, put the appearant hatchback seat down and crawled into the trunk and was attempting to hold it.  It seemed like he kept insisting she let go and drive while he held it.  Unfortunately, every time Lady began to let go, it swaaaaaaayed dangerously.  He tried to talk her into it again…  Sh shook her head NO!  He talked again!  She shook her head NOOOO!  He talked again… And I couldn’t hear them from inside but appearantly she told him in no. uncertain. terms. that she was NOT going to do that.
Sloooooowly he climbed back out of the back seat and they lifted it out of the trunk and onto the ground.  At this point I totally thought they were going to give up.   Much to my surprse, Lady gets on the phone again.  She must have told whoever it was to get over here.  And appearantly iit worked because not 5 minutes later, up drives a guy in a black suburban.  They carried it to the back, shoved it in, and literally ran back to their car and the 3 of them drove away quite happy wth their treasure.  Except for the man in the black suburban.  He didn’t really seem that pleased.  Haha!
It was totally awesome!!!  So much free entertainment, I felt like I needed to pay THEM just for the show!
Try it!  Put something on the curb wth a free sign!  It’s awesome entertainment!!!
And to Guy & Lady who found their treasure and were determined enough to spend 30 minutes getting it home no matter what it took…  Good for you!!!  You obviously have WAY more determinaton than I would have!!! It was an AWESOME 30 minutes!!!   🙂

Got these ‘lil babies yesterday!

Bought these guys plus the matching chest of drawers yesterday on a facebook group version of craigslist!  CANNOT wait to get started on them!!!!   And showing off the AFTER look!!!  Whoop whoop!!!





I’m already busy scrubbing and de-glossing…. (Mostly because I want them OUT of my living room and where they BELONG!! lol!!)  Pictures to follow!

Side Table Makeover!


Side Table Re-Do by DIYinRealLife.com

We’ve all seen these tables…  The ones that scream 80’s?  The ones that look like they’re going to take more than a simple coat of paint?

This is a SUPER easy fix that is almost as quick and almost as cheap to do as a simple coat of paint!


Our friends had these tables and Handsome Man and I did a few projects at a their house over a weekend…. SO fun!!!


Check out the Before’s!

Side Table Makeover by DIYinRealLife.com

We had 2 side tables and a matching coffee table to start with…

Side Table Makeover by DIYinRealLife.com

We simply cut 2×6’s for the entire tops and screwed them in from underneath… Suuuuper Easy!

Also… You’ll notice it looks very warm and green outside?  Yeah…. We did this last summer… Just getting around to posting about it now!  It’s not nearly that warm out right now.  I’m pretty sure our month of April is bi-polar!!!

Side Table Makeover by DIYinRealLife.com

A coat of primer and 2 topcoats of white latex paint later, this is what they looked like.  Better, right???

Side Table Makeover by DIYinRealLife.com

After that, I distressed them a bit and then glazed them with my favorite glaze from Home Depot.

Side Table Makeover by DIYinRealLife.com

We also painted and glazed the shelves in the living room while we were at it…

Side Table Makeover by DIYinRealLife.com

Looking spiffy, eh??!

Side Table Makeover by DIYinRealLife.com

Side Table Makeover by DIYinRealLife.com

Side Table Makeover by DIYinRealLife.com

Perhaps a little less 80’s now?

How’s THAT for an easy fix?

All it cost were the 2×6’s and some paint we had on hand anyway!  🙂

Favorite Pins of the Week….

It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these…. So Let’s kick off my return to blogging after nearly a week of dropping off the face of the blogging earth with an edition of “Favorite Pins of the Week!” 🙂





The Sunset Lane did a major overhaul on their bathroom!  Love the end result, but what really made me stop and say “wow” was the batten walls!  The different heights?  I don’t think I’ve seen that before and I love it!



Life Thru a Linds did a tutorial on their media center overhaul!  I love!  The idea of using shelves…  Chain shelves no less…  Mmmm!  Love!



Since I have a thing for bowls or vases of orbs, this one totally tickles my fancy!  I especially like the twine wrapped ones!  Six Sisters Stuff did a tutorial…  Next week project??!



Just luuuuuving this quote.  🙂



Not sure what I adore more…. The use of a sofa table?  The happy color of aforementioned sofa table? The lamps? The shelf underneath all organized with wire baskets?  Whatever the case… Sarah M. Dorsey Designs NAILED it and be. still. my. heart.  🙂



Ummm….. Can anyone say BRILLIANT??



Totally looks better than pictures hanging w/ magnets – use dollar store frames, paint them and put magnets on the back.  Nice!!!  Tutorial by A Diamond in the Stuff.



Offbeat Home and Life posted 7 tips for growing mad basil…  There is something you must know about me.


I want to grow lots of it this year.  This post should totally help!  Mmmm!!!



Mmmmm!!!!  Speaking of YUM!  Totally wanna try this summer!!!  Recipe by Photo has this incredibly tasty looking desert! Grilled Nectarine Bowls!  Never would have thought to grill this!!!  But. YUM!



And this?  Well this just makes me laugh!  A lot.  🙂

An explanation of the radio silence!

Handsome Man and I are heavily involved with the planning of a kids conference every year.  Nebraska has an annual homeschool conference and curriculum fair for parents to attend that the can listen to various speakers, look at children’s curriculums, and just be encouraged!  While they attend the conference, we take care of 250-325 kids for 2 whole days.  It’s AWESOME!!! Totally my highlight of every year!

This year was called “VALOR.” The drama was a fictional story based in the 1940’s during WW2.



The costumes, the theme, the music…. It was just SO. MUCH. FUN!

Can’t wait to show more as others share about the weekend!


Posting should resume as normal tomorrow! 🙂

I am SO looking forward to being back!


Update:  The Wissmann Family posted various pictures of the drama AND just general-NCHEA-fun-happenings for VALOR – Kid’s Conference 2013!  🙂


Summer Salsa Deliciousness!

….Or would that be Spring Salsa?


Summer Salsa Recipe - by DIYinRealLife.com


Whatever the case, on a whim…. Handsome Man and I thought it felt like a fresh-made salsa day!


Let me tell you… This is the EASIEST salsa ever!  In fact… I’ve never gone by a recipe.  I just tend to get all the ingredients listed and throw random amounts in until it tastes good.  In an attempt to get an actual recipe for you to work with, I went to allrecipes.com and they have this awesome feature where you can just type in 5 or less ingredients and it will give you recipes with those ingredients. (Apparently it’s awesome for finding recipes for supper using ingredients you happen to have on hand)

I typed in:





And found the closest match to my own summer salsa.  It was a good base, but I changed the amounts on several ingredients to fit my own recipe better. (Less onion, more cilantro, etc…)


So without further ado…




Summer Salsa Recipe - by DIYinRealLife.com

In a mixing bowl, combine 4 large chopped tomatoes… (Sam likes them cubed, I like them chopped finer.  Since he was chopping the tomatoes, they’re cubed. 😉 It’s all how you like your salsa!

Summer Salsa Recipe - by DIYinRealLife.com

1/2 a diced onion, (This little fellow from Pampered Chef is one of my faaaavorite things!  It makes dicing things soooooo easy!)

Summer Salsa 4

1 cup cilantro, 3 cloves minced garlic, 2 Tbsp. lime juice, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. garlic salt.

I also suggest adding 1/2 of the jalapeño pepper, and tasting it. If you have a husband with a “wussy tongue,” you’ll need to stop with that. (Yes, I’m talkin’ to YOU, Sam!) If you prefer your salsa with more of a kick, add the remaining 1/2 jalapeño.  I use the whole jalapeño, seeds and all, except for the stem.  The seeds DO make it hotter though.  Fair warning.  😉


Summer Salsa Recipe - by DIYinRealLife.com

Stir all ingredients well.  Cover the salsa, and chill until ready to serve.  It really is better after it has sat for a while… The flavors mature or something.  All I know is it’s better! 🙂


Summer Salsa Recipe - by DIYinRealLife.comThis is what it looks like after it has sat for a bit….  Yum.

Summer Salsa Recipe - by DIYinRealLife.com

Just grab some chips, put your feet up and sit back…

And ENJOY your summery goodness in a bowl. 😉

You’ll thank me later.

(You’ll find the recipe below)

Summer Salsa Recipe - by DIYinRealLife.com

4 large tomatoes

1/2 onion, chopped

1 cup chopped fresh cilantro

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoon lime juice

1/2 tsp garlic salt

1/2 tsp salt

Jalapeño Pepper, minced, to taste


In a mixing bowl, combine chopped tomatoes, cilantro, diced onion, minced garlic, lime juice, and garlic salt to taste. Add 1/2 of the jalapeño pepper, and taste it. If you prefer your salsa with more of a kick, add the remaining 1/2 jalapeño.  

Mix, then cover the salsa, and let sit at least an hour or until ready to serve to let the flavors mature.  


How to make your iPhone icons cute!

Okay…..  So obviously I’m not done with my icons…


How to make your iPhone icons cuter!    DIYinRealLife.com

But I just HAD to share with you all ASAP!!!



Cause I’m kinda giddy over the adorableness…


I know.  I apparently need a life.  Of something.


But it’s SO STINKIN’ CUTE!!!!  lol!


All you need is to get the Cocoppa app and it’s super easy from there!


I also found more detailed instructions at Cindy Emerson Photography that has lots of details on how to customize using the Cocoppa app!


I’m off to go customize the rest of my icons!

Ahhhhhhh!!!!!!  SO much adorableness!!!!   🙂

15 Minute Art!

15 minute art - DIYinRealLife.com

So I did this last fall for the bathroom at Mom’s shop.  It really did literally take me 15 minutes. lol!

15 minute art - DIYinRealLife.com

It was a completely random combination of sponge painting… Spray Painting with a zebra print stencil… and even flecks of paint with an old toothbrush.

15 minute art - DIYinRealLife.com

The frame…. Who once was gold, got a coat of black spray paint.  I simply sprayed it on, then wiped it off with a rag.  Again…. No method to the madness!

So if I can do it? You can TOTALLY do it!

How fun to have original art in your home made by YOU!!!!

Try it!!!!   What’s the worst that can happen?!?!?!

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