Simple Sugar Scrub

First off, there isn’t a lot of remodeling, renovating, or construction related projects going down on Lynnwood these days. After the big side room redo, we definitely needed a break, as did our piggy bank. But there is lots of LIVING happening on Lynnwood! So the post, at least for a little while, will be more about the living that is going on.

Back to sugar. Who doesn’t love sugar? Uh…….me??? I don’t really have a big sweet tooth (more of a salt kinda girl), but I did finally find a use for the sugar in my pantry and a cheap solution to my annoying dry skin.

Every year for Christmas I buy my Mom a nice sugar scrub and every winter when I’m complaining about my dry, itchy skin she raves about how  she couldn’t live without her scrub and how I should really buy some for myself. Except for I’m not willing to splurge $15.00 dollars on myself (yes, I know I’m cheap. Alex has worn off on me.). Instead, I hopped over  to  Martha’s page and found a simple recipe for sugar scrub . There are literally hundreds of variations on the web for this recipe and I substitute the carrier oil for baby oil that had aloe (extra important for dry skin) mixed in.

Even though, I’m not a cooking expert this was fool-proof. Total cost: maybe $8.00 (give or take a few cents). I’ve been able to make several batches from my initial supplies, which is nice because I can be as liberal as I want with the amount I use. I’ve also given a few canisters ($2.00 at Wally World) away as winter pick-me-ups. A quick tip, if you apply before you get in the shower I find it really increases the softness of your skin  AND be careful in the tub with the oil. Happy Scrubbing!

P.S.  Alex was willing to try on his new daisy dukes for me (insert tiger purr), but the pictures were a little to rated for the blog. ; )



Filed under DIY

Recycled Khakis and Pillow Cases

My husband was sweet enough to let me use a family gift-card to buy this:


MY FIRST SEWING MACHINE!!! The gift card was actually from my grandfather which makes this a little extra special since his mom (my great-grandmother), Mrs. Jerene Linville was an expert seamstress.

I actually have a little  experience sewing from when I was a little girl. I was an active participant in 4-H and my first and favorite projects were sewing projects. My neighbor/future teacher/future co-worker/ second mom – Kay, was my sewing instructor and together we created Holstein cow shorts, a navy blue pants suit with a stripped jacket, and a red A-line dress. I even cashed a couple checks on my threads by winning “Grand-Champion” at the county fair and placing once at the state fair. But like most things, sewing was pushed aside for my love of soccer.

Fast forward 13 years and I’ve retired from the pitch and I’m back at the sewing machine. I’ve actually completed a few projects since purchasing my new Brother, but my shoulder bag/purse, made out of Alex’s old Khakis and a pillow case, turned out the best.  I didn’t use a pattern or any specific directions, but if you are interested there are 100’s of blogs who have directions that can help you.

My incredible husband has a very bad habit of putting pens in his pockets. Not that bad of a habit, except they usually bust and ruin his pants. Thank-goodness I’ve unveiled my crafty side, ruined pants make  free material!

I started off by cutting one leg as close to the crotch as I could.

I made the widest portion of the pants the bottom of the bag. Not much sewing on this part, just a straight stitch across the bottom and an angled stitch on the corners to round her off.

Have an old pillow case around? Yes? Me too. Which made a perfect liner for my bag.

I used the bottom half of the right pant leg to cut a small square that I then sewed to the liner to make a pocket for my must haves, like my  Chap( I hate digging in my purse for it, mostly because I wrecked once while doing so – eeekkk!) . I also attached the liner to the bag.

Next, I chopped off the left leg to make a strap (I forgot to take pictures of the strap process, but I ended up sewing two doubled lengths together to get my length – I wanted the bag to be long) and then attached each strap end to the inside side of the bag.

Start to finish I probably spent about an hour on this project, but the best part is it was 100% FREE!!! (I already had the thread too!)

And Alex has a new pair of shorts to wear this summer when he’s mowing the grass. ; )


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Filed under Alex and Sara, DIY

Get Your Craft On, Everybody Get Your Craft On, What!

I’m probably one of the last people you would expect to be a big hip-hop fan, but I’m a super fan of tight beats and good lyrics. In, fact the Big Tymer’s classic – “Get Your Roll On” has inspired me in my crafting adventures (NOTE: I was going to insert the video here so you could experience Mannie Fresh and Baby, but clean versions apparently don’t exist.).

Anywho, I thought I’d share some of my projects I’ve been crafting up while jammin’ out.

Sweetgum-Fruit Wreath

I don’t know why, but I have always thought Martha Stewart was annoying. I mean, she is good at everything she does. She could take a fifty year old newspaper and turn it into the most glourious craft project ever. Despite my personal feelings for Martha I knew I wanted to try her Sweetgum-Fruit Wreath for our winter wreath. Almost every house on Lynnwood has a Sweetgum tree, so “gum balls” are in no shortage. It ended up being super simple and her tutorial was very helpful.

Her tutorial suggested using floral wire to insert the sweetgums, but I used toothpicks on my styrofoam base and they worked perfect. I dabbed a little bit of hot glue inside each sweetgum just for reenforcement.

I also attached my ribbion differerntly. I used hot glue and a thumb tack and it has held up great.

The total cost was less than $15.00 (I got a little crazy with the spray paint). Not only was this project simple and cheap, but it looks beautiful on our front door!


Filed under Design, DIY, Home & Garden

Move Over 1997 it’s 2011 (almost:))!!


We’re super excited to get our brand new couch today!! This will only be the third piece of furniture we have bought for our house, everything else has been hand-me-downs. Which is great, but it’s time to leave the 1997 couch behind. We asked our families to give us only money this year so we could outfit our new room to fit our style. Luckily, we are blessed to have an awesome family who made it possible to give the ole’ blue and green plaid couch the boot (R.I.P Plaid Monster – all I’m going to say is it’s a good thing you can’t tell stories.)

We opted for a sectional for a couple of reasons – 1.) It fits the space better than a couch/love seat combo and 2.) it will provide for lots of extra seating for entertaining (which hopefully will be happening very soon).


Merry Christmas to us!!

Alex and I are both excited to kick back and relax tonight on the sectional, but I’m really excited to start planning out a mood board with rugs, tables, lamps, art, storage, etc… ooohhhhh so pumped! 🙂 🙂 🙂


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Filed under Design, The House

This One Goes Out to Mitch

Wow! It has been almost 6 months since we last updated. My apologies.  I started grad school about 6 months ago (shoot me) and combined with teaching and day to day life time was limited for hobbies. We really appreciate all the request for updates from our followers; especially Mitch – Alex’s stepdad, my amazing father-in-law. So this one goes out to you Mitchell T.

Even though I’ve been bogged down with school (teaching) and school (being a student) things have been poppin’ on Lynnwood. The biggest news is we finally finished “the side room”  a.k.a our family room! Really it was all Mitch, Alex, and Diana down the homestretch. I went on away with a few teachers to the beach on my fall break only to return to a completed living space! It was an awesome surprise and all my honey’s idea!

Rather than go into the  details of the finishing touches, I thought I’d post the progress pictures; from the beginning to the end.


Side Room - Before




Mitch putting up the 2x4's

Mitch attaching 2x4's to drop the ceiling.


“Domestic Diva” tool belt.
Progress as of 3/12/10


Mud Time!


Drywall up and one sanding done.


Start of fireplace redesign.


Priming and Painting

Floor going down.
Fireplace progress.
Very nice!

So after a year and half we finally completed Our favorite room in the house. We’ve moved all of our old furniture in the room for now, although we’ll be purchasing a new couch for Christmas. We rarely leave the space. It’s just so cozy and so ours! Of course these pictures can’t tell half of the good memories (and a few nightmares)  that were made during this process. BIG, HUGE, GIGANTIC, HUMONGOUS thanks to Mitch and Diana, who without none of this would be possible. Extended thanks to Uncle Sam and the first time homeowners tax credit,  My Mom (Julie), David, Big Matt, Sarah, and of course Bella Corey Wells (supervisor).


Filed under DIY, Home Improvement, Remodel, The House

Bargain Find

In every House Beautiful, Traditional Home, or interior design blog I read these appear:

Pottery Barn $159.00

Ceramic garden stools. They can be used (as I demonstrated for Alex) in the garden, as extra seating inside or outside, or even a small table.The possibilities are endless, but at $159.00 this was not a possibility for mi casa. But guess what I found at Big Lots:

Big Lots $20.00

Yep $20.00! Ceramic AND better details. This baby is currently serving as a foot stool in my office and is perfect when I’m spending time working on my online class. Bargain find of the summer……so far.


Filed under Home & Garden, Inspiration, Uncategorized

The Great Floor Debate

If you follow trends in interior design, or just observe what buyers are looking for in the housing market, you probably know that hardwood flooring is the most desirable type of flooring around. When Alex and I began our house search we were hoping to find something with hardwood or at the very least at least hardwood in a portion of the house. We lucked out though when we found our house on Lynnwood. The entire house (with the exception of the addition) had hardwood flooring. The only room that hard carpet was the “side room”. The carpet was in awful shape, so we knew right away flooring would be an investment.

Of course, hardwood flooring comes with a price tag and in most cases a hefty price tag. I wanted hardwood. Alex wanted something economical. Thankfully, we live in the 21st century and laminate is here to make us both happy! We shopped around at Lowe’s and Home depot and they did have some good deals, but Alex still wasn’t willing to “splurge”. He got on Lumber Liquidators website and found out that there is in fact a store in Lexington and they had some crazy deals!!

Not only did they have great prices but they had a very wide variety to choose from. Everything from laminate to bamboo flooring (one day my friend, one  day.). In the end we settled on a very light laminate from Utopia.

Is it the highest quality? Probably not, but it did come with a 10 year warranty. Is it exactly what we’ve always dreamed of having in our home? No, we actually are more cherry or mahogany people. But did it fit into our budget and look great. YES and YES! Including the padding (which helps control moisture) and 330 sq. feet of laminate, we spent a whopping $300.oo for our new floor! Alex was beyond thrilled with the savings and I was happy as a lark because I got what I wanted. 😉

They offered professional insulation, which I would recommend if you haven’t laid laminate before or don’t have an amazing father-in-law to do it. Thankfully, I have the latter. Of course as my grandfather would say “you get what you pay for.” And we paid $300 for new flooring, meaning it wasn’t going to be a walk in the park to lay. The first four rows posed a problem. Because this room used to be a carport the floor is not exactly level, making it very difficult to get each piece in correctly. We also found on the Google people who had used Utopia also had problems getting the floor started, but after the first few rows things went very smoothly. It took Mitch and Alex about 6 hours to get the first four rows laid . Alex made me stay at my parents house because he thought I would flip out, so I don’t know a ton of details about the problems that occurred. After a good night’s rest, the next day was much more successful.

Because the fireplace sits at an angle Alex had to cut several of the pieces in order for them to fit just right.

It took us three days to purchase and lay the floor. I can’t tell you how amazing it is to walk to the shower on something else besides worn 1960’s linoleum. Not mention, along with the paint color (details to follow), the room is much lighter.


Filed under Home & Garden, Home Improvement, Remodel, The House, Uncategorized