Overdone Party Themes For 2013

Birthday party themes range from the cute and adorable to down-right weird. Each kid is unique, wants to stand out, and have a super fun birthday party.

Birthday party

If you’re looking for another list of themes for your kids birthday party, this is not that list.

Instead, you should avoid the following themes because they’re so popular. Chances are several kids in your area will have one of these for their party this year.

I’ll admit that several of these are cool, but if you want to throw a unique party you want to steer clear of:

Girl Themes

  1. Disney Princesses 
  2. Dora The Explorer
  3. Justin Bieber (Tween)
  4. Hannah Montana
  5. Tinker Bell
  6. Minnie Mouse

Boy Themes

  1. The Avengers 
  2. Angry Birds
  3. Cars
  4. Thomas the Train
  5. SpongeBob SquarePants
  6. Mickey Mouse Clubhouse

Think ‘Outside The Party Box’

Themes are supposed to be fun and that’s accomplished best when it’s not the same as every other kid on the block.

Take a little time and come up with a unique idea that fits your awesome kid.

You could even make the decorations with your kids to make sure it’s one of a kind.

Is there a theme you think should have been on this list? Are you now rethinking your party theme idea? Tell me about it.

Five Great Projects: Re-purposing Pallets Into Furniture

I have seen a multitude of pictures of furniture items that were made out of recycled materials. My favorite new addition to this recycling trend is turning old or new pallets into usable furniture.

I Love Making Great Stuff Out Of Free Or Cheap Materials.

So I went on the hunt for some examples of this creative craze. I found page after page on Pinterest of pictures but I had to search through to find people who had actually made this stuff. I was super excited when I found five great blog posts.

Bookshelves Anyone

The ladies over at Six Sisters’ Stuff found a neat alternative to standard bookshelves.

These stand out and could be catered to any book lovers’ needs.

Put at any height for the kids to reach, so you don’t have to worry about a big shelf getting pulled over.

pallet shelf

Versatile Dresser

This is a not so normal dresser made out of pallets and some brackets. It was made by Kim over at To Much Time On My Hands.

I love this because it is  thinking out of the box, from the materials to the outcome of it all.

scrnshtdresser

Anybody Sleepy?

The next pallet creation is this thrifty day bed made by Ashley Ann over at Ashley Ann Photography. Who would have thought, sleeping on pallets?

She did, and did an amazing job at it.

pallet day bed

Comfy Couch

This next piece looks extra soft and relaxing. Alena over at Fish Smith 3 has this couch in her outdoor seating area. They not only used pallets for it, but also a twin mattress to save on cushion costs.

pallet couch

Outdoor Chairs On The Cheap

Lastly is a set of those Adirondack chairs I see for sale everywhere. The guy with instructables did an amazing job breaking down this task and making it super easy to follow. This is our plan for outdoor seating ASAP!

Adirondack pallet chair

I hope you received tons of inspiration and got the steps ready to make some of your own furniture out of pallets. I wanted include one last tidbit on the pallet furniture as I found this list of unique things to do with them.

My hubby has already made me a shelf out of pallets and we’ve got big plans for more. Not only do we get cheap or free building materials, we’re keeping all that wood out of the landfills.

Do you know of a pallet furniture piece that should have been featured here?

Trash To Treasure Tuesday: Window Mistreatment

I’m full of posts today – right?

So my upstairs hallway is large – big enough that it’s my office and the cat’s room (meaning they have their condo and litter box there). It’s a dark hallway with only one window which is right at the top of the stairs.

Anyway, I’ve had this old boring curtain hanging there. I’ve wanted to have something pretty hanging up, but never found the right curtain. One day while putting away linens, I found an old table cloth that hasn’t been used in forever. I love the color and print, so I’ve kept it.

LIGHT BULB! Take a hint from The Nester and make a window mistreatment!

I created a pocket for the rod using fabric tape – yep tape! Then simply grabbed some ribbon I had to tie it up. Isn’t it purty?

Two bonuses came from this:

1. As seen in the picture on the right, the curtain doesn’t block the cat’s view (that darn cat is always getting in my pictures).

2. It lets in lots of light. So now Hubby can see just how shabby the hallway is. He said to me the other day “I think we should paint the hallway (and stairway) in the spring. It’s looking outdated up there”. HURRAY!

Lesson Learned: think outside the box when trying to dress your windows. Don’t be afraid of trying a  mistreatment!

I’m linking to Reinvented’s Trash To Treasure Tuesday – great links there for decorating ideas.

Free Webinar: Is It Still Christmas?

funny pictures of cats with captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures

It’s mid-January. Is it still Christmas at your house? Are the kids asking if Santa is coming again? Or maybe you want to avoid decorating your tree with Valentine’s Day decorations…

I’m holding a Free Emergency Webinar this Wednesday at 8pm (EST). I’m Calling It Put Christmas Away – Finally!

If you’ve procrastinated long enough and want some motivation, encouragement and tips on cleaning-up and organizing your Christmas decor, I invite you to participate!

Plus I’ll share with you my Storage Inventory Worksheet - straight from my own household binder.

To join me, simply subscribe to my list below and the webinar login details will be sent to you. (Note: If you are already on my list, there is no need to sign-up below – you’ll automatically get the login info!)

First Name:
Email Address:

I hope to see you there!

My No-Sew Slip Cover

UPDATE: I responded in my comments area some questions about this slip cover. Be sure to scroll all the way down! I’m also linking to DIY Day at A Soft Place To Land – this is one of the sites that I visit regularly for inspiration!

This is my first DIY decorating post. I’m always loved decorating. I was even a Home Interiors Decorating Consultant (RIP HIG). And I’m a huge fan of the junk-style/flea-market/trash-to-treasure/shabby-to-chic look.

I’ve been a long time stalker reader of several decorating blogs including Thrifty Decor Chic, Our Suburban Cottage, The Shappy Nest, and many many many more.I think I have over 20 in my reader. And I’m super excited to be participating for the first time in Metamorphosis Monday hosted by Between Naps On The Porch. (Yes, I know it’s Sunday, but the Mr Linky is up and I want to get on the top of the list!)

Because of being home full time these past two years, I’ve gotten bored with some things around the house. So I’ve made the time to take care of some DIY decorating projects. Plus, I’ve made a list of things to do in the future. And this is one of my favorites!!

No-Sew Sofa Clip Cover

Here’s the “BEFORE” of my 8-year-old couch. It has good solid bones, but the fabric has seen better days. Cats, Dogs, Kids, Sunday Football – it’s all left it’s mark on the cushions.

So I went to Home Depot and purchased 2 canvas drop cloths. I don’t remember the dimensions, but one was the largest available and the second was big enough to cover the cushions. They are medium-weight canvas and are machine washable.

First, I washed the drop cloths. Note: the larger one is like 11×14 and took 2-and-a-half hours to dry. I’m taking it to the laundry mat next time!

I used the larger drop cloth to cover the back, sides and front of the couch. Lots of tucking involved and just a few large safety pins to keep it in place.

Then I used the smaller one to cover the seat cushions. Actually, they’re wrapped in it.

Here’s the after:

I used large safety pins to gather the canvas at the arms.

And because of the new cover, I was finally motivated to make pillow covers using the extra fabric I’ve been holding onto for years (the drapes were from JCPenney when they had a 50% off custom order sale – back in 2003!). I also cover two smaller pillows with a yard of remnant I picked up at WalMart for $3.

I LOVE THE COUCH! It’s so casual and comfy looking. I’ve always wanted the slip-covered look. And don’t you think the kitty makes it more inviting?

PS: Dont forget to check out Metamorphosis Monday hosted by Between Naps On The Porch. You must head over there and check out all the creative ladies that participate for awesome ideas and tutorials.

Feng Shui In The Kitchen

The kitchen is the most important area of your home. It is responsible for nourishing your entire family and keeping everyone happy and healthy. In feng shui, the kitchen is a symbol of wealth and abundance also.

The optimal place for your kitchen is the center of your home. If the kitchen is located near the front or back door, the positive energy can escape.

Food gives us all of our energy and enables us to remain healthy. To keep this food energy positive and healing, the food has to be cooked in an organized kitchen that maintains a good balance of Chi. By having a well balanced and energized kitchen, the cook becomes more energized and the entire family benefits.

The best tips for the kitchen are pretty basic and should go hand in hand with the rest of your home very easily. Lighting is an important part of feng shui and in the kitchen, there should be an abundance of natural light if available and if not, full spectrum lighting is recommended. The air should flow nicely and the kitchen should give off a very welcoming energy.

A great way to add positive energy to your kitchen is by using plants and flowers. When placed on your kitchen table, they are not only beautiful to look at but increase the positive energy level greatly. You should use plants and flowers that are yellowish in color because in feng shui, yellow is a great digestive aid.

Like the rest of the house, clutter should be kept as minimal as possible. Since this is the very heart of the home, keep it as happy and warm as possible.

Fun Ways to Display your Favorite Photos

Photos of family, friends and favorite places add a touch of personality, style, flair, and jazz to any room.  Sometimes however it’s difficult to think of inventive and creative ways to display your treasured pictures.
First you need to take a good look at the photos you want to display.  One of your favorite photos might be a large group picture, but it may not actually display well when hanging on a wall.  Save that one for the scrapbook and look for pictures that have vibrant images that convey a message or a thought.
Older photographs can be brought to live with the advances in photographic reproduction technology.  If you have a favorite old photo that’s fading, or has been damaged or crinkled through the years, take it to a photo shop to have it restored and reprinted.  You might even be able to do this yourself at home with photo imaging software.  You might want to consider added a special effect, enlarging or cropping the photo differently to add a new perspective to a familiar photo.
Mixing frames of different styles and sizes can be fun, but takes some planning and forethought.  Lay the framed photos on a tabletop or the floor and rearrange until you find a workable arrangement, then employ a friend or family member’s help when measuring and preparing to mount on the wall.  Have your level ready to be sure that a picture that looks straight actually is straight.
Photos don’t have to be limited to the walls.  Tabletops, desktops, bookshelves, and your family entertainment wall unit are all great places to add a picture frame. Even a dressing screen can make a clever and unique backdrop.
You can even decoupage photos onto a table lamp base or mirror frame for an added jazzy effect.  And by using fabric transfer sheets, you can even transfer a favorite photo onto a pillowcase or wall hanging. Photo collages of friends or family members make great placemats.  Simple arrange and laminate.  This is also a great way to hang a collage on the wall or corkboard above your desk or in your office.  Individual laminated photos can be affixed to magnets to put on the refrigerator and other metal surfaces in your home.

How can I use baskets in my bathroom?

I like baskets in my bathroom; since baskets will adjoin shades to anything you have in the room. Baskets also allow you to coordinate with other bathroom accessories, such as shower curtains, throw rugs, sink skirts, etc. On the market, you can find many baskets to choose from. Baskets come in all kinds of shades, contours, and dimensions. Ultimately, you can create your own baskets. Creating your own is fun, since you put heart into your own creation, which brings grand rewards for years to come.

How are baskets created?
Some baskets are made of common newspapers. In addition, you can create baskets from organic grasses from the sea. One can even create baskets from wheat, straw, or uncovered timber, etc. People make baskets from old rags lying around the house also. I have seen some baskets made out of shoeboxes. You can make baskets out of anything you want to, providing you know what type of bathroom accessories you desire to put in your home.

How can I use my basket?
You can use your baskets for many different things, such as storage. I use the baskets to store various items, including correspondence, invoices, etc in the kitchen, yet in the bathroom I store bathe items, such as skin goods, liniments, etc. You can also store hand towels, cosmetics, shaving blends etc in the baskets. I like baskets because they are pretty, and it offers you a great storage facility for many items.

Baskets can be used as compost bucket, or you can store your hair items in the baskets. Baskets give you the advantage of sitting them on shelves or the floor to fill up that vacant corner legroom. You can use the baskets to store your laundry. The storage bin will free up disorder around your bathroom.

How to decorate baskets:
You can use a wide array of items to decorate your baskets. When decorating your own basket try using items, such as ribbons, binds, clasps, etc. You can find old items around the house and come up with your own ideals. Perhaps some idle textile might make a great bend over for your basket. Toting up ribbons to your basket close to the pinnacle is a great idea. In addition, you can interlace ribbon onto your basket, which you cannot go wrong with creating your own exclusive approach.

One of my favorites is the ivy storage baskets. The ivy has a variety of shades that go with everything in your bathroom. In addition, ivy is easy to manage, which means you can create virtually anything you desire.

If you want to add style, try adding dried floral. The flowers will enhance the basket by adding texture, as well as color. At craft stores, you will find a wide array of floral, or you can dry your own.

Moss is good also. The moss works to fill in gaps around the edges and sides of your floral arrangement. Use the moss, adding it to the crown to alter effects. Creating baskets is fun, and you have the choice of designing wall hangers, ivy, floral, and so on.

How to choose your patterns?
It depends on your taste. If you are searching to accomplish uniqueness, then consider your ideas, tastes, desires and other patterns sold on the market. You have wide array of colorful items or plain textures to consider.

How would I make my own baskets?
When making your own basket you will need a few items to get in progress. First, you will need to consider what you intend to generate. Try making a draft before starting your basket project. As you draw up the floor plan, consider basket weaves, and other items you can use to design your product.

Interior Design On A Budget

Most of us today work hard for what we have and even
though it may not be the best decor, it is still ours.
What many don’t realize is that there are steps you
can take to redesign your interior on almost any
budget.

With a little hard work and a little know-how, you can
take what you have, add a little to it and make it
look like an interior designer came in and did a small
makeover.

You should always start by re-using existing items in
your home. This is where you will save a lot of money.

In fact, you wont spend any money at all. If you take
inventory of what you have and look at things in a
different light, you will see an all-new outlook on
your items.

Sometimes, things in our home become stagnant and we
are used to seeing them day in and day out.

Take those items and consider using them in a
different way. Try moving things around, give them a
good cleaning and find them a new home.

Paint can be your best friend when you are trying to
do interior design on a budget. Paint can totally
change the look of a room, and for only a few dollars
per room.

It just takes a little elbow grease and a little work
to make your old dingy room look new again. And white
is not the only color you can paint your walls.

Experiment with color. New paint cannot only change
the look of your room, but it can change the look of
the furniture you put in it, and the decor you add.

Lighting In The Bedroom

Lighting in the bedroom is extremely important when
you are decorating. Many people often forget about the
lighting and it really makes a big difference when you
are decorating your bedroom.

The first thing you must think about when you are
designing the lighting in your bedroom is layering.
You must layer the lighting.

When you layer the lighting in the bedroom it gives
you the opportunity to create the different moods you
are hoping for. You should always have lamps on
bedside tables and another light across the room
diagonal from the bed.

This allows the lighting to be balanced in the room.
You also might consider light sources on a dimmer
switch that allow you to select the balance of light
that is emitted into the room.

One thing you do not want to do in your bedroom is
have a ceiling fan with a light on it. If you must
have a ceiling fan in the room then it is fine.

You should not have a light drooping from a ceiling
fan because it looks tacky. Your bedroom needs to have
the sexy look and a light from a ceiling fan will ruin
the look.

It is also a good idea to use different bulbs for the
lighting in the room to give a different look. Using
recessed bulbs with floor and table lamps can give the
look of washing the room with a soft light.

However, you also are layering the room with different
lighting and it gives the look of pure elegance that
you need to accomplish a nicely decorated bedroom.

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