Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Baby "Green" Steps

Lately I have been taking baby steps in living a little "greener". Family and friends know that I will make the 2 hour trip to Ikea just to replenish my paper napkin supply. They are thick and have pretty designs on them. (call it my guilty pleasure) A couple of months ago I saw in a magazine how an event organizer buys Ikea dish towels and uses them for napkins at the event's she organizes. (light bulb goes off) So the last time I went to Ikea I picked up 20 of these dish towels and some solid colored one's as well.

I keep some on the counter.

I keep my reserves in a basket located in my pantry and keep an empty basket for dirty "napkins". 
I thought the transition would be more difficult but the whole family took to the change very well. 

The next "green step" was to eliminate air fresheners with VOCs. For years we have used plug in air fresheners. After doing some reading on VOCs and the effect they can have on your health I threw out all plug ins and began looking for alternatives. Other than opening windows and letting the fresh air in I found that beeswax candles with cotton wicks are a good alternative. 

I found these candles at Target all for under $4. They also sell a vanilla , pineapple and Macintosh apple scent. They smell lovely and I feel MUCH better about the air my family is breathing in our home. 

They may be little steps but it feels good.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Infant to Toddler Room Redo - Wall Art

When my husband and I married I should have presented him with a bouquet of paint chips. Foreshadowing the life he would now have ahead. I LOVE changing the colors of my rooms. We moved into our home two years ago and every room had the same color it was originally painted...until now:) My children are growing up with the assumption that their room can have a makeover every two years. I know...my fault entirely! My Isabelle's room went from purple and pink to "more grown up colors" blue and yellow, Anna wanted a yellow room and I wanted to change Camden's to the blue Anna already had. So Anna and Camden switched rooms and I got to work on some new wall art to go in the new room. I wanted to stick with a light blue/red/brown color scheme. 

I love Dr. Seuss books and especially their illustrations. I purchased some unfinished wood frames from Michaels and painted with chalkboard paint. I was originally going to put pictures of Camden in the frames and write cute things on the frame. After reading The Lorax to the kids lately I changed my mind to the Dr. Seuss idea. I searched the web for Seuss illustrations and added Seuss quotes that I like and printed them on card stock paper. When I tire of this idea I can change the pictures out for something else.

Since I create most of the wall art that goes in my kids rooms I have a lot of canvases. When we change a theme or color I recycle the canvases if I can for the next project. That is what I did for this project. I covered some canvases I already had with burlap. (I will warn you that working with burlap is not the best for allergy sufferers!) 

I found a plaid fabric that incorporated the color scheme I wanted for the room and used felt for the surf board, windows, and tires. I am happy with the finished product with the exception of one thing. The uneven corners of the canvas caused by the bulkiness of the burlap. I guess I can call it "rustic" art! 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Infant to Toddler Room Redo - Storage Bins

Like many people I have become addicted to Pinterest. My husbands says that I browse it more than he does ESPN which isn't far from the truth. I saw the above image of superhero storage bins and thought to myself "I have loads of storage bins I've purchased at Target...I can do that!"

These ADORABLE critter storage bins, made by 3 Sprouts, served as further inspiration for my storage bin makeovers.

This is the end result. I printed images of the cute 3 Sprout designs onto regular computer paper, cut them out then used as a template on fleece bought at Michaels. Some hot glue later and a clingy toddler whining in my ear and ta-da!