Sisters with Flair

Sunday, February 28, 2010

dinner tradition

If you know me, you know how much I love family traditions. I'm always looking for ways to take the mundane tasks and make them more fun. I started this dinner tradition last year and my girls LOVE it. I keep a notebook and a pretty candle near the dinner table. I also keep my YOU ARE SPECIAL TODAY plate in with my regular dishes so we use it more than just b-days. Each time someone has a good day (such as: got to be the line helper at school, got 100% on a test, no cavities at the dentist, it's their half b-day, scored a goal,etc.) we write a note & the date in the book and light the candle for them at the dinner table. It's a great little family journal of memories too! The best part is it's inexpensive and little prep time needed to make your family feel more loved!

Friday, February 26, 2010

What's Old is New Again

About 6 months ago I came across a set of old kitchen cabinets at an estate sale and knew I had to have them. Cabinet doors work great for different projects, the different layers and additional molding add a lot of detail that really make it come to life and add visual interest. Last night I attended a baby shower and rushed to get this finished in time, but the results were worth it. The baby’s room colors are black, white, and blue, a few of my favorite colors.

To begin, I had so sand, fill, and sand the cabinets some more. Lots of elbow grease, these had definitely seen better days. The outside of the cabinet was painted a beautiful light robins egg blue color (about 4 coats). Since this will be going in a baby’s room, I didn’t antique and stain the paint, I just added a matte sealer to protect the finish. The finish will take at least 24 hours to dry so don’t try to rush it or you’ll have a mess on your hands. The inside was then painted with about four coats of chalkboard paint. This will take four days to cure until it can actually be used. The last step was adding the decorative metal piece for the final finishing touch.

So the next time you see a discarded cabinet headed for the trash heap, grab it, it could turn into your next new project!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Ready to Pop!

I know, I know. I've missed my Monday blogging, total slacker. Well, maybe I wouldn't call myself that- Dad and I have been very busy with lots of this...

Oh yeah, I'm totally sore. I'll show you the results (hopefully!) next week. I'm totally going against my mom's recommendation to NOT put this picture in. I feel like it makes me seem like a "real" person out in this big bloggy world. But maybe I'll regret this picture after my total exhaustion from working so hard fades away, hmmm.

Alright, so we had the baby shower last week and I thought it was a major success. Of course though, being a new blogger, totally forgot to get pictures during the party, but just imagine that it was beautiful. We decided to go with a "Ready to Pop" theme and drank soda pop, ate jalapeno poppers, peanut butter popcorn, popcorn balls, lollipops, pop rocks, ring pops, Oreo pops (it was all very poppy!) along with fruit, fried cheese balls, and a teeny little vegetable tray. Gotta get our 5 a day! We also had balloons everywhere for extra Pop! Sorry for the lack of pictures, rookie mistake.

So, here are the invitations, I found them on etsy here. I thought they were cute and easy. (This isn't the actual invitation, just the example from etsy) Instead of saying OH BOY! at the top, I had it say READY TO POP! and also, we didn't meet at "The Hunt Club." I don't even know who Stella Gray is anyway.... moving on, I thought the invitation was cute, and, most important to me, it matched the colors.
Here are the Oreo Pops I made. Sounds simple, right. Stick a lollipop stick on an Oreo and dip in almond bark. Easy as pie- or not! Maybe it would've been easy if every Oreo didn't have a major fracture. Not fun, but in the end they look good and we all know that looks are all that really matter. I think they tasted pretty good too. Here's a hint- use double stuffed Oreos, and maybe Popsicle sticks instead.
Again, here's the diaper cake I showed you- I got lazy and just added a little toy on top. Makes it a little bit cuter, I think.

A party is not complete in my eyes without the Martha Stewart tissue balls, found here. I recently taught a bunch of women how to make them, I think they are so fun and make everything really festive. I also thought this white one turned out especially perfect, perfectly round and beautiful. I've still got these hanging in our living room, I think I might keep them up for a while. Mr. Z thinks that they're balloons. They cost about a buck each to make- about the same price as a balloon, but these last longer. Totally tricky to hang though, so I used, guess.... staples. I totally have staples stuck into my ceiling. I tried thumbtacks, but the ceiling was too hard and I just ended up bending a bunch of tacks (and hurting my thumb). Also I used clear thread, but you could also use fishing line to create that "hanging in mid-air"appearance.

So that's all my party pics- I'll remember to take more next party I throw!

I'm Addicted

They say the first step is to admit your addiction right? Unfortunately I still don’t think that will help me recover. A good friend got me started when, as part of my birthday present; she included a dozen of these sweet, chewy, pieces of heaven. I’d like to think I have some self control, but let’s face it; I can’t when it comes to this molasses cookie recipe.

David has encouraged my addiction by making triple batches and then rolling the cookie dough into balls and dipping them in sugar before slipping them in the freezer for a warm sweet treat in just 13 minutes anytime of the day. Whew, I got that off my chest. It feels good to share my addiction with someone else. Now The Pioneer Woman has made that possible. If you haven’t had a chance to check out her blog then you’re in for another treat. Stock full of recipes, photos, and stories, this is a one of a kind site.

The Cookie Link complete with a printable recipe card.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Turquoise, my new bff

I love the color turquoise and couldn't wait to paint this cabinet in our guest bathroom. I wanted it to feel more like furniture than the cheap builder cabinets. There are lots of different ways to go about repainting a cabinet but here are the steps I used. I've found that skipping steps= nightmare later on, so this task took 4 days total to do. I hated dealing with OIL based paint but I wanted to ensure it didn't rub or scratch off, especially in a humid area like the bathroom. So put on your shlumpy clothes, break out your favorite man-cheatin' country songs and get ready to love your ugghhuly cabinets into fabulousness! All for under $50.
Step 1: Remove all drawer and cabinet fronts and wash with soapy water
Step 2: Degloss the laquered cabinets. We used a product called liquid deglosser by Crown. We just rubbed it on and it dried almost instantly. FYI: Stinky stuff!
Step 3: Primed with OIL based paint, tinted dark gray. You have to buy oil based paints at specialty stores like Sherwin Williams. We only had to do one coat! Let dry overnight.
Step 4: Paint with turquoise OIL based paint. We had to thin with some MEK or paint thinner. Stir alot! We tried brushing it on with a paint brush but found it to be really sticky & goupy. So we ended up spraying the drawer fronts and cabinet doors with an HVLP paint sprayer. We brushed on the paint on the cabinet sides. We had to let this dry for 6 hours and repeat 3 times. Total pain! We painted the back side of the doors too, hence this took 4 days!
Step 5: Gel stain magic! I used Minwax Gel Stain Mahogany 605 . Make sure its GEL stain if you are doing this over OIL based paints. I used gloves and a rag and rubbed it on and rubbed off the excess.
Step 6: Wait 24 hours for the gel stain to cure before applying Minwax Fast Drying Polyurethane. This will protect the finish from rubbing or scratching off.
Step 7: Break out the Ben & Jerrys, pull up a chair and sit and watch your new turquoise baby. Take pictures of her, carry her in your wallet, show her off to all your friends because you will love her as much as your newborn baby!

I'm linking to this fabulous site:

Sunday, February 21, 2010

photoshop phun!

I am no pro at photoshopping, but I love anything that has to do with photos and shopping. So why not combine the two funnest things in life? I have been taking online tutorials for awhile now and still have tons to learn but thought I'd share some sites that have really helped me get started. I bought some indie actions that I use alot and you can find them here. I also love this free site called coffee shop. I use her golden vintage action the most. But the newest site that I've found that I'm so super excited about is Jessica Sprague. I knew a little about photoshop CS4 but she made it come to life! I just took her photo editing online class for $30 and it was SO WORTH IT! It was easy to follow videos and light reading. Every time I tried to read a photoshop book I'd fall asleep so this was perfect for me. Only took me about 10 min a class and there's 12 classes. Then I'd play for an hour. So fun. I think photoshop makes ordinary pictures look extraordinary. Now, if I could figure out how to take off 20 lbs on all my own pictures I'd be flawnting my own picture all over the house! For the sanity of my family, maybe its best that I don't learn that one!

Thursday, February 18, 2010


Alrighty, tonight's the big night of the baby shower and we are in full crazy mode right now! Add to that Mamma and Daddy Flair coming a few hours after the party ends and you've got one stressed out lady! Yikes, I love a good party, but the day of makes me want to pull my hair out! I feel like banners really make a room feel festive and am so happy Sassy Annie showed me how to make this celebrate banner. Best part is, you can use it for all sorts of occasions; birthdays, baby showers, graduations, happy days, whatever. LOVE that!
To make it you'll need:
9 pieces of cardstock, solid color
9 pieces of scrapbook paper, coordinated (If I do this again, I would use more mellow paper, so the letters stick out a bit better)
Vinyl letters to spell celebrate (or you could use cardstock and cut out your own letters with a cricut)
Hole punch
glue stick
To make:
1. Cut all of the paper into the pendant triangle shape. You'll want to cut the cardstock as large as possible and cut the scrapbook paper a bit smaller so the cardstock will be a border.
2. Glue the scrapbook paper onto the cardstock.
3. Decide the order you'd like your pendants.
4. Place your vinyl on the pendants.
5. Punch holes in the top corners of each of the pendants.
6. Slide ribbon through the holes and tie them all together.
7. Hang up.
8. Grab your husband to have him admire your work!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Mirror Mirror On the Wall

mirror blog, originally uploaded by Nestlings.

Yard sales can be a treasure trove if you know what to look for. Add a can of spray paint and that ridiculously cheap find can turn into a one of kind piece that really makes a statement.

Several months ago I found this adorable mirror at a yard sale for $3. While the cheap gold color just wouldn’t suit a 14 year olds room, I knew a can of watermelon pink in high gloss would fit her style. I began by taking the mirror apart, twelve screws in all to avoid having to tape every inch of the mirror. A quick coat of white primer was sprayed on the frame before I set it aside and moved onto another project (which I’m famous for!). Unfortunately it sat in my garage for several weeks until I found it yesterday. The weather has finally begun to warm up a bit and I noticed there wasn’t any wind blowing (perfect spray painting weather). Within 10 minutes the entire frame was coated to a nice high gloss and left to dry in the sun. I popped the mirror in this morning and Madeline will have a nice surprise when she gets home from school today.

Look for items that are in fairly good condition, slight blemishes are ok and usually not noticeable. For instance, there was a slight crack at the top of this mirror but it's nearly underneath the frame and hardly noticeable. The lines of something are really what I'm looking for. I didn't want a plain solid colored edge, I was looking for something that had texture to it. While this was actually made out of plastic it doesn't matter since I knew I was going to be spray painting it a fun color. This had been sitting next to an absolutely gorgeous white decorative wood frame with a price tag of $80 luckily I could see the potential and save myself over $70!

Total amount of time less than hour

Total cost, less than $6

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Photo Decor

So anyone who knows me knows how I'm obsessed with pictures. They just make me happy! I know this goes against decorating rules by displaying photos everywhere in my house, but I don't care. I've followed rules my whole life, I'm ready to break some (especially LAME ones!) I'm awful at accessorizing, I feel like every accessory has to have personal meaning or its just a whole lot of crap laying around. Hence, I decorate with photos. It gets kind of boring to have 50 frames hanging around the house, so I've got to get creative in how I display my favorite memories. Here are a few examples of my accessories. I think bedroom doors are unused realestate in most homes. I made a scrapbook page for each child and attached it to canvas using tacky tape and hung it on the outside of their bedroom doors using 3M reusable velcro. I also love huge pictures but they get kind of pricey so I enlarge a photo at costco (20x30 is only $8.99 people!) and then mounted it onto 3/4" plywood using spray mount adhesive. I fill, sand and paint the sides of the wood before applying the picture and always have a friend handy because you need extra hands on large pictures. It's my homemade canvas-looking piece of art for only $20 instead of $180!! My photo accessory I love the most though, has to be an old window I found at an antique store. I had my sister Renee make me a vinyl quote with my favorite song lyrics and I applied to the glass. Then, I blew up some favorite pics and attached with scotch tape. I like to change the pictures often so taping is the easiest solution. So go ahead, break some rules. Decorate for you, not for a magazine. You'll be happy you did! And send me some more ideas while you're at it. My walls will thank you!
I'm linking to this fabulous party:

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Amazing Race

Alright, I admit it... I am a reality tv junkie. I love Survivor, Amazing Race, American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance, Extreme Makeover Home Edition, and the Bachelor (sometimes, not this season). I was so excited for the Amazing Race season premiere last night that I thought I'd make us a special treat... Peanut Butter Popcorn! This stuff is seriously amazing-haha. AND it is so much easier to make than carmel corn.

Peanut Butter Popcorn

1 bag popped popcorn (I used kettle corn)

1/2 cup corn syrup

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup peanut butter

Just mix the sugar and corn syrup together and bring it to a boil. Let it boil about a minute until the sugar dissolves. Then stir in the vanilla and the peanut butter. Pour over the popped popcorn and mix it up. Be warned: this only makes enough for 2 at our house!

Happy Love(ly) Day!

We found very quickly after the kids were born that we needed to revamp our v-day celebrating to include them. Don't get me wrong, we still have a fun date, but do it on another day. The restaurants are crazy anyway. I was just looking through some pics of our previous v-days and laughing at the fun memories. Every year since the kids were little, we have a different family over for chocolate fondu and pizza. The kids love it and I get my chocolate and fruit fix! I found these pics of Taylor and her cousin Harrison on Valentines 3 years ago. She was very concerned about his dirty face, although she should've been more concerned with her own! The other picture is of the girls valentines they are giving to their classmates this year. What's your idea of a perfect valentine's day? I'd love to hear what you do with your kids!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Hey Hottie, Do You Like Nachos?

Since we all know children learn by example, I sometimes wonder just what my children think about love and marriage. I got a little insight a couple of days ago when I found a booklet that my seven year old created in 2nd grade last week. Although this was not intended as a project to include pictures, there were cartoon drawings on every page to illustrate his point.

The booklet was set up with one question and a space to answer on each page. His book goes like this:

Q: What do people do on a date?
A: I think what people would do is KISS!....p.s. it’s disgusting.

Cartoon: A person labeled “dad” and a person labeled “mom” kissing…a boy in the background is yelling “that’s disgusting.”

Q: How do you decide who to marry?
A: I think how I decide is to look at them and think that there is a hottie and then talk to them.

Cartoon: the first frame has two people, both saying “blah blah blah blah blah” and a boy standing off to the side saying “are you going to get married or something?” In the next frame the girl is walking away and the boy has a thought bubble that says “she’s a real hottie.”

Q: How do you make a marriage work?
A: I think you make them laugh or kiss them and give them a ring.

Cartoon: 1st frame has two people, one saying “blah blah blah” and the other person is saying “ha ha ha.” 2nd frame shows two people kissing. The third frame shows a boy giving a girl a huge ring.

Q: Is it better to be single or married?
A: I think I should get married.

Cartoon: 1st frame has a boy saying “do you like nachos? The second frame both people are saying “I do!”

So, to make marriage work we’ve apparently taught our seven year old it involves lines like “hey hottie, do you like nachos? I guess it could be worse. Now I’m feeling hungry, I think I’ll go make some nachos.

Happy Valentines Day!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Let them eat cake...maybe not

Yikes! Last minute I've decided that I'll host a baby shower for a good friend who's due with a baby boy at the end of the month. So what's the number one thing you need when you have a new baby? Diapers! I can't think of any cuter way to give a gift of diapers (and have a super cute centerpiece)! This is my third attempt at a diaper cake and this time it was tricky. The two other times I had these plastic chip and dip containers that were on clearance at Walmart. I just stuck a 2 liter thing of pop in the dip part and built the cake around that. I knew I should've loaded up on those containers because it was hard to decide what to use for a base because a piece of cardboard is too flimsy. Enter that pizza pan we got from our wedding that we never use. Perfect! I just stuck the 2 liters of pop on top and built around. I rolled up all the diapers into little bundles and tied them with those clear hairbands for little girls. To make the fabric layers functional, I made burp cloths out of a towel and the fabric. Then I tied it all with some rick rack. It still need a little something to finish it off, but I'll let you see that when I show you the entire shower!

Here is the first diaper cake I made!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Mustache on a Stick

Valentines is quickly approaching and in the past I’ve spent lots of time creating the kids Valentines to give out at school which usually involves taking pictures, photoshopping and putting together something like this photo card. Time does not seem to be on my side this year, and the little boys are not in love with the idea of being on the Valentine card so I was very excited when I found this idea from blonde-designs (this blog is full of seriously fun and simple ideas to make every occasion special). They were even kind enough to include a template so I could easily create it myself.

The best part was how easy it was to do. All 93 mustache and lips were cut and labels attached with the help of my husband and an episode of 24 and American Idol. I have a hard time sitting still to watch TV (especially during 24) so this was the perfect project. All of the kids loved the idea and are so excited for their parties on Friday.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Chalkboard Mat

This has been a lifesaver for me at the doctor's office, long car rides and occasionally even restaurants! My super cute SIL made one for each of my girls for Christmas. You can order chalkboard fabric online if your fabric store doesn't sell it. It has it's own carrying case and a little pillow for the eraser. How cute is that? My girls just love it and I love that we have two so they don't fight over it! Wouldn't this make a cute b-day present?

Monday, February 8, 2010

I'm no Bakerella

So my husband has a big Super Bowl party with all his buddies every year- he loves stinking up our house with the smell of 20 lbs. of ribs. Yuck. I'm not a big meat person. But he went to Dear John with me the night before, so I was still in a pretty good mood. Good enough to whip up these oreo footballs ala Bakerella. Hers looked amazing! Mine aren't so attractive, but they taste sooo good. She used chocolate almond bark to dip her footballs, the almond bark didn't work so well for me (let's face it, nothing really worked for me here) so I used chocolate chips and it tastes better than almond bark. I think I'll go eat the rest for breakfast!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

ribbon necklaces

So I was shopping at Nordstrom's when I saw these gorgeous flowers that were sewn onto a piece of felt and then attached to some ribbon. I assume it was a necklace but it could've been a hair accessory. Regardless, it was GORGE! My stinkin' cute friend Brittany makes these flowers (check her out here) and I just had to try it out for myself. So I sewed them on some felt, cutaway the excess felt and hot glued some ribbon on to tie in a small bow behind the neck. My girls of course loved the bling, so I thought I'd make a similar, Valentine inspired version with felt. This would also be super cute with felt flowers. I'm thinking of 20 different versions of this in my mind right now and hope my fingers can endure the hot glue burns! Flair is just Fab! I'm thinking of withdrawing my previous 3 items of flair max because a girl just can't have enough!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Be my Valentine?

Probably the thing I miss most about teaching 1st grade is all the fun holidays. Valentine's especially. So, who made up the rule that only elementary kids get to hand out valentines to everyone? Zeke told me (in gibberish) that he really wanted to send out valentines to the whole family this year, and what can I do but cooperate? Make you some wings? Ok, kid. You'd better appreciate this. :) Ok, maybe he wasn't so excited, but I thought he would make the perfect cupid. Thanks to my fancy sister, Andrea for the amazing photoshopping. It somehow makes this girly getup seem a bit more masculine. My husband insisted that we tell people to destroy this photo by the time he's 13. Wouldn't want this picture to come back to haunt him.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Looking Sharp

My third child loves to draw and is constantly looking for “his” pencil; my youngest child, on the other hand, is always stealing his brother’s pencil so I thought this would be an appropriate craft for both of them.

What was the best part about this project? I used recycled “safety” envelopes, you know, the kind that come every day in junk mail. The patterns are so soothing and pretty together and every day, one or two new patterns arrive for free!

The worst part about this project is it really takes more fine motor skills than a five year old can handle. Consider yourself warned…


Paper –nearly anything will work
Small/Medium Pain Brush
Modge Podge


  1. Gather supplies

  2. Cut strips of paper just over one inch in width and the length of your un-sharpened pencils. Mine were just under 7” (you don’t cover the metal or eraser part).

  3. Brush Modge Podge on the back side of a strip of paper (you’ll want to do one at a time).Make sure you don’t have glue on your fingers and lay the pencil on the edge of the paper and carefully roll the paper onto the pencil. Carefully make sure the paper is smooth around the pencil and lightly brush additional modge podge under the exposed paper edge if needed.

  4. Let dry; at least ½ an hour, the best is overnight

  5. Sharpen and get to work!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

What's Love got to do.....

What's love? It means something different for everyone. Unfortunately for my husband, Love is a TO DO list. In honor of this upcoming V-day I wanted to show you what love means to me. Love is when your wife (name left out intentionally) moans and complains about looking at 10 million toys on the ground and tells her husband she's going to throw everything away if she has to look at another toy!!!! Then, he (husband who is madly in love with smokin' hot wife) magically whips up an amazing cupboard to hide these multiplying barbies and matchbox cars. Here is the masterpiece that I get to look at every day. The knobs are my favorite, I found them in a flea market in Canton, Texas. I love the color too- It only took about $200 in stain, paint, primer and lacquer and around $350 wood. It took him 2 days to build it and 20 days to paint it, wish I was lyin! I tell you, painting is the pits! Everytime I look at this beauty I'm reminded that I am loved. I've got to figure out something equally as cool to give to him. Do you think he'd want a housekeeper and a new dishwasher? :) Happy V-day peeps!

Monday, February 1, 2010


So, you all remember my lima bean wreath? Apparently a black door, facing south, on a clear winter day makes for some extreme temperatures. Melted lima beans everywhere. Anyone have any ideas how to get hot glue off the front door? I wasn't about to let my hours of work go to waste, so I fixed the wreath and spray painted it aqua and hung it on my kitchen door. I've since been using that aqua spray paint everywhere. Any ideas on how to get aqua spray paint off the garage floor? Hmmm. Anyway, here's what I did for our front door for Valentines. I think it's pretty heat resistant. Just used an embroidery hoop and some pink tulle. Maybe I should make myself a pink tutu? Maybe I've been spray painting a little too much....