Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thanksgiving Weekend

I have been so thankful to have a family to celebrate all of life's experiences with. This year was special because my mom and I were
able to go visit my brother and his family in Texas. I had a lot of fun chatting and cooking with my sister-in-law, catching up with my brother, laughing with my nephew and acting like an utter goofball for my great-nephew. While we were visiting we made it a goal to tackle my nephew's bedroom. It needed to be painted and decorated. As usual we had some hiccups and weren't able to get it all done, but I did manage to snap a picture of one of the projects my creative sister-in-law came up with. She decided to use one of the drums from a set that my nephew never uses and make a side table. To amp up the interest we printed off several pictures of things that my nephew is interested
in and decoupage them on top of the drum. All it needs now is a nice piece of plexiglass to go over it. My brother is going to have a machine shop cut and shape the plexiglass to fit snuggly inside of the rim to create a nice waterproof table top.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Computer Died

I am not going to be able to post much on my blog for a bit. My computer chose an inopportune time to completely crash! I will try to post from time to time via my iPad.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Halloween Success!

Halloween this year was the best one we have had in awhile despite the fact that my hubby has been dealing with some health issues.  I was pleased with how the decorations turned out and the kids loved the house!

We had tons of kids stop by with costumes ranging from zombies to Pippi Longstocking.  Our pups even got into the Halloween spirit this year probably to make up for the fact that we don't yet have children compounded with the fact that our Corgi, Sadie actually likes to get dressed up.

Sadie was a cheerleader this year and she would not look up at the camera. Bernie my pumpkin is a lot older and was more compliant in the picture taking process (treats helped a lot too!) I hope everyone else had a fun Halloween too! Now I am starting to get my Fall decorations out in preparation for Thanksgiving.  I can't believe that Christmas is only 7 weeks away! YIKES!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Scary Faces....

I have not fallen off the blogging wagon again, I have been scraping down my front porch for the past few days.  I finally got all of the loose and peeling paint up and should be set to get it all painted tomorrow just before it rains later this week.  In anticipation of getting the porch all painted, I managed to make time late last week to carve out some faux pumpkins.
I am loving my scary faced pumpkins.  They are sitting on my fireplace mantle just waiting to be placed out on the newly painted porch steps.  Planning on getting the porch all decorated and taking pictures of our puppies all dressed up in their Halloween costumes.  Starting to think we really need kids, especially after watching my hubby get the dogs all dressed up tonight and prance them around the block tonight.
What spooktacular creations have you been concocting lately? I would love to hear about them!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Chi Town Getaway...

There is nothing more refreshing and more exhausting than getting away for a few days.  Late last week I got to tag along with my hubby on his trip to Chicago.  We stayed at the Palmer House Hilton and when you walk into the Hotel you are greeted by what is known as the Peacock Doors seen here:
Then you walk up a set of stairs into the lobby and look up to see an amazing mural.  Here is part of the mural I snapped with my Ipad camera.
There is so much to do in Chicago but we I knew we were just going to be there for one night so I decided to just stick to hitting the shops near the hotel.  A view from our room highlighted one of my trips.
A huge Blick Art Supplies store directly across the street from our hotel! SCOOOOORRRRE! Fortunately we only had one small suitcase to keep me in check because after I recovered from the sensory overload, there was so much I could have purchased. After traveling from store to store, and eating all the calories that we could have possibly burned by all of the walking, we crashed in our room.  In keeping with the era of the hotel, it was decorated with French Provincial furniture.  My favorite piece in the room was a gold gilded mirror:
I also enjoyed the architecturally detailed view directly outside of our window.
The pictures don't really do it any justice but I thought it wasn't bad considering I took it with my Ipad.  We ended our trip by visiting Intelligentsia Coffee on Saturday morning.  It was amazing how fast it went from this
To this
It was truly the best coffee I have had and a perfect way to end our quick little getaway!  While I was off gallivanting around Blicks Art Supply, my hubby was going before his PhD board at DePaul for the final time.  He is finishing up his final class and then he will have earned 2 PhD's. I am proud of my overachieving hubby and will be glad when he is finished with school.
It is also my hubby's birthday today so I better get going to help him celebrate some more today!
Happy Adventures!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

My Little Pumpkins...

Someday I hope to be referring to my children when I use this title, but for now my latest decorating endeavors will have to do.  My staircase is still a work in progress.  I have plans for a garland to hang along the banisters.  What I have accomplished is drilling patterns into my little faux pumpkins to place on top of each stair post.

I plan on keeping my little pumpkins out through Thanksgiving so I decided to go with less traditional Halloween designs on some.  I did manage to sneak in a pumpkin with little witches hats.  I can't wait to do some scary pumpkins to place out on our front porch with our glowing eyeball wreath! (evil cackle inserted here).  I absolutely love Halloween and have enjoyed watching as our neighborhood is slowly transforming into a ghoulish delight!  
Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Lamp Makeover

There have been many times when trips into my mother-in-law's basement (I fondly refer to as the family thrift shop) have saved us from having to unnecessarily spend money.  There is a little bit of everything down in the basement and I am grateful for the chance to go pilfering through all of the goodies to see what I can use in our home.  We were in desperate need of a lamp to go on our little entryway table so I ventured down in the basement once again to see what I could find.  I came up with this little outdated but still very functional lamp.
In addition to being very dated, the lampshade that was on the lamp was too big for the base.  During our shopping trip to Target yesterday I found a very cute and affordable burlap covered shade for about $14.
I then dug out my supply of silver liquid leaf and began transforming the base of the lamp.
When it was all painted and the new lampshade added this was what I got!
Here it is all nice and dry and where it belongs!
Of course I used a clear coat spray to ensure my lovely transformation will last for many years to come, or at least until I decide to do something different with it again!  Now, I am off to start tackling some of the indoor Halloween decorating projects.  Hope everyone is enjoying the last day of the weekend as much as I am!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Spooktacular Wreath

Somehow despite doing all of our weekly shopping running around, I managed to get one thing toward our Halloween decorating accomplished today.  That's right, I got my Halloween wreath made, I got my Halloween wreath made (Me doing a happy dance and a little song).

I found the feather wreath at Joann's today for $14 regularly $40. The skulls are paper mache and I got them at Michaels for $3.  I painted the skulls using black acrylic craft paint with glitter sprinkled in.  Once the skulls dried, I coated with a glossy clear coat and used wire to affix them to the wreath.  The lights were picked put by my hubby at Target for $10.  It isn't the least expensive project I have made, but I still feel like it was worth it.
I have to sand my front porch down and do a quick new paint job before I can put up any of the other outdoor decorations.  It is supposed to rain tomorrow so I am going to shoot for getting the porch transformed on Monday.  Perhaps I will start my indoor Halloween projects tomorrow. . .
Have you started any of your Halloween decorating yet? I would love to hear about it!

Friday, October 7, 2011

My Memories Giveaway Winner!

I have to admit that this week has been very chaotic with all of the blogger technical difficulties.  Despite all of the mess and confusion, there were a few people who persevered and managed to get their names entered in the drawing for the amazing and fun My Memories Suite software. 

So, here goes...
The winner that was randomly drawn is ....
Susan : I like the "Boys" themed kit that they have and I thought the idea of the pets in the "family portrait" style was really cute...
Congratulations Susan!  I will email you the link to your prize within the next few days!
For those that did not win, but are still interested in owning the software, you can go to MyMemories.com and use the special coupon code STMMMS76968 at check out to get $10 off the purchase of the My Memories Suite digital software (the software comes with a $10 coupon for the My Memories store- for a total savings value of $20!)
Thanks to everyone who stuck with me through the technical difficulties!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

My Memories Features

Well this week of My Memories is nearing an end and I thought today would be a good time to list some of the special features of the software as shown on the My Memories website.  So here is the outline of things that can be done and the ways you can share your creations:

Make it Memorable

Add music or narration for a complete experience

Sit back and enjoy

Watch your memories on your Mac, PC, iPod or TV.

Bound to last

Print bound photobooks, cards, and calendars.

Virtually anywhere

Share to Facebook, Flickr, Twitter and more.

If you get to looking around and and decide you can't wait until the drawing, or your name did not get drawn there is still hope.  Just go to MyMemories.com and use the special coupon code STMMMS76968 at check out to get $10 off the purchase of the My Memories Suite digital software (the software comes with a $10 coupon for the My Memories store- for a total savings value of $20!)
Happy Creating!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Problems Corrected and More My Memories Ideas...

After spending the majority of the day yesterday trying to get the comment issue corrected, I was not able to post my most recent creations using the My Memories Suite  software.  I figured I would take advantage of the time to make some potential Christmas card ideas since Christmas is just around the corner!  I can't believe that I am actually saying Christmas is around the corner because it seems we just celebrated Christmas.  Time is just flying by...
Well, here is what I have so far:

Which one do you like best? 
Tomorrow I will outline the different ways you can use the software as highlighted on the My Memories website.  Don't forget that the GIVEAWAY DEADLINE for the My Memories Suite software has been extended to FRIDAY, OCTOBER7, 2011.  Please see previous post HERE for the ways to enter the drawing.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Houston, We Have a Problem...

Apparently, there are people that have gone in and left comments and for some reason they are not posting properly in addition to those that didn't understand how to post a comment.  I am going to have to get with Blogger to see what needs to happen to get the missing comment issue resolved.  In the meantime, I am going to extend the drawing deadline of the My Memories Suite Giveaway
to the end of the day on Friday October 7, 2011. Also, people can just email me their comments at kbenskin9@gmail.com to ensure that they get entered in the drawing.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Giveaway Deadline is Nearing...

In case anyone missed the details of the giveaway I am hosting, here it is again:

This is a GIVEAWAY!!!!One lucky person will come away with their own My Memories digital software! So, how do you enter?
There are a few ways!
1. Follow me and leave me a comment letting me know!
2. Go to the My Memories website and pick out your favorite kit. Then, leave me a comment letting me know which one you picked so I can check it out too!
3. "Like" My Memories on Facebook and then leave me a comment letting me know you did so. (By the way when you "like" their page they send you a coupon for a free kit!)
That is a total of THREE chances to win! 
I will randomly draw the winner at the end of the day on Wednesday, October 5, 2011.  
If you get to looking around and and decide you can't wait until the drawing, or your name did not get drawn there is still hope.  Just go to MyMemories.com and use the special coupon code STMMMS76968 at check out to get $10 off the purchase of the My Memories Suite digital software (the software comes with a $10 coupon for the My Memories store- for a total savings value of $20!)
I have been having so much fun with this software over the past few days.  Here is my latest creation with the software:


I printed these off onto light colored fabric iron on transfers.  Then, I ironed them onto some left over muslin that I had stashed in my fabric drawer.  I took the completed projects and placed them in embroidery hoops to hang on the wall in the stairwell.  Here is what it looks like with a few of them up on the wall:
Tomorrow I will continue to post ways you can create with this software.  I am a little obsessed with it and all I have created thus far is with either the free kits featured on the store website, or kits I got for free through the use of the $10.00 credit when the software was purchased and the $5.00 credit I got when I liked the My Memories Facebook page.
Good Luck and Happy Creating!