Thursday, December 20, 2012

Around the House

My goodness, time is flying! Christmas is only a few days away and it seems like we just finished up with Thanksgiving! 

Today is Aubrey's last day of school until after the New Year and I had to remind her of this a few times this morning in order to get her out of bed. She was however soooo excited to take her Christmas present for her teacher to school. I am so mad at myself that I forgot to get a picture of her this morning. 

I will often find Emma sitting in her chair in her room looking at a book. It's the cutest thing. 

I just love this book stage. I remember Aubrey and Brandon at around this same age, they would love just sitting and looking at a book or bringing it to someone to read to them. They each had their own favorite which I still have and plan to put into their baby box. 

This is Emma's. It's called 'Carl's Afternoon in the Park' and it's seriously the most adorable little picture book. It's all about a dog who takes care of a baby and a puppy and all the cute little things they do together.

During some of these warmer days, we love getting outside. 

Brandon's favorite game right now is playing 'swords' with plastic bats. He really wants to be a Ninja Turtle.

The trampoline gets used almost every single day. I think it's the best investment (besides our house) that we have made all year.

After the town Christmas Parade we walked to the church to see the sweet nativity.

 Operation Toy Cleanout is in full swing. I have probably been able to remove around 6-7 garbage bags full of old toys/clothes and random other items in preparation for the Christmas toy wave. It feels so good to get rid of things that have just been sitting.

Aubrey does school, even when she is not at school.

These won't last long!! 

We made these last night. So easy and sooo good!!! 

Aubrey is very excited to be the assistant gift wrapper this year. Last night she helped me wrap a present for Daddy from Mommy. I expressed the importance of keeping this gift a secret and making sure Daddy did not find out what it was. Of course as soon as Daddy came home the first thing she made sure to tell him was that she knew what his present is. 

Hubby is a master gift finder-outer, he's extremely good at guessing what is he is getting or what is in a wrapped box. 

So once again, Aubrey and I had the keeping it a secret talk. After the kids were asleep Hubby made sure to tell me that I made a mistake telling her and he was going to find out. 

Aubrey, I'm counting on you!!! Don't spill!!

Hubby's last day is tomorrow and then he is off until after Christmas. I can't wait to have my entire family home. The Christmas excitement is settling in!! 

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Living Room Reveal: Do It Yourself Wainscoting

It's finally done!!!!!!

Well, almost. I know I've been going on and on about this living room project we have been up to but we are finally done for the most part. 

When we first moved in this is what the living room looked like:

Basically the same as the day it had been built. Well, we came in guns blazin' and decided to paint a shade of blue that we had picked out at Lowe's  It was brighter than we expected and took quite a bit of getting used to. We started to really like it and now I think it was the perfect pick. 

Here is what it looked like for a couple of months.

I'm so happy we picked it. I think it's beautiful!!

So, on to the project. Before buying the house I had been dreaming of all the awesome things I wanted to do and was so excited to decorate. I knew I wanted to do wainscoting, I loooove wainscoting. I think it gives a lot of character and it's just really beautiful. 

I did a lot of research until I was ready to take the challenge and just do it. A couple of months(yes I said months, not the fastest project I've ever done!) ago we bought our materials and got to work. 

Although wainscoting looks amazing and awfully difficult, it's actually pretty easy and anyone can do it! The first thing I did was hang the chair rail. 

I bought one of these cool things:

In my opinion it's okay for smaller projects but with all the upgrading we are planning to do we will definitely be upgrading to a compound miter saw after Christmas.

The hardest part of hanging the chair rail was the inside corner cuts. It was really difficult to do with this little hand saw but we made it work.

Don't worry, no baby toes were harmed during the making of this project!

My helpers:

Not only did I do my living room wall but I also did this wall that you see when you walk up the stairs. 
My fridge sits on the other side. 

So once I had all the chair rails hung, it was on to the boxes. The boxes were super easy, although the cuts did get a little tedious. Here's what everything looked like before I primed and painted.

AND the final product!!!!!

I LOVE it!!! I love how warm and inviting it makes the room and really adds so much character. 

I still need to do about 1 more coat of paint and do some touch up but I'm calling this project complete! 

:: Happy dance::

The only bad thing that happened is I tipped over my can of primer onto my carpet. YIKES! We are going to clean the carpet after the last coat of paint, so hopefully this comes out. Please please!!

So now that this is finally done, I'm very excited to move on to finishing the rest of the living room. Hubby and I have decided to take one room at at time. As much as I'd love to go and paint my kitchen, the living room needs to be finished first! Next up curtains, new ceiling fan, hang the T.V. and family pictures, maybe a rug, pillows for the couch... the list goes on and on :)

Sunday, December 2, 2012

How to Make a Half Decent Christmas Wreath in 5 Minutes or Less

Happy Sunday everyone! 

One day last week when Aubrey was at school and Emma was napping, I had the sudden need to make a wreath for the front door. 

I didn't want to spend any money or leave the house, so I scraped up some supplies to see what I could put together. 

I started with an old beat up pool noodle. Taping the ends together I formed something that kinda looks like a circle. Good enough anyway!

I had two spools of left over ribbon. The problem was, they were not the same and there was not enough on one spool to completely cover the noodle.

Solution? Use both! Yeah, that's just how we roll over here!!

Have you been to the Dollar Tree lately? They have so much awesome Christmas stuff! I bought this cute bow, which came in a pack of two. I think it's adorable! 

So I taped it on my wreath and VOILA!

Is it perfect?? HECK NO! But, I still like it and it didn't really cost me anything and I didn't even have to leave my house to make it. 

Not too bad on the front door.

It actually looks pretty good from the road, I'm happy with it. 

I also made this smaller one to go over my kitchen window. All I used was a small wreath from, of course the dollar tree. And these adorable glittered reindeer, also from the dollar tree.

We are in the Christmas spirit over here at the Testa house, I hope you are too! This evening we are off to enjoy the town Christmas Parade. Have a great day!
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