Monday, September 30, 2013

Poster Giclee Print on canvas - 8 x 10 inches / 20 x 25 CM - Julian Alden Weir - Still LIfe with Brass Pot

  • Poster Giclee Print on canvas - Julian Alden We...
  • Museum grade - Highest quality giclee prints on cotton canvas with blank margin
  • 425gsm canvas made from 100% pure cotton - Authentic canvas weave
  • Worlwide shipping by DHL in protective tube - 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
  • Size: 8 x 10 inches / 20 x 25 CM - WAHOOART-8DP8SL-Poster-8x10

List Price:
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Product Description
8 x 10 inches / 20 x 25 CM Museum quality giclee art print poster -- Julian Alden Weir : Still LIfe with Brass Pot -- 100% high quality cotton canvas (425gsm) -- Worlwide shipping by DHL -- This print comes with a 100% Money-Back Guarantee. If you are not completely satisfied, simply return it to WahooArt for a full refund. No questions asked --

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Haven (no place like it!)

Hello all! Hope you’re having a beautiful day so far!

My fellow team members and I are getting SO excited for the upcoming Haven Conference this summer:

Haven Conference banner

Last year was our first year for this DIY/design conference and it was a huge success – we are pumped for another year! This year Haven will be held at the beautiful Buckhead Grand Hyatt in Atlanta, Georgia from Thursday, August 1 to Saturday, August 3.

Just in case you don’t know the Haven team, here we are:

Haven conference team

It includes myself, Beth from Home Stories A to Z, Chris from Just a Girl, Rhoda from Southern Hospitality and Traci from Beneath My Heart. Oh, and we can’t forget rock star Kristin who is a BIG part of making the details of the location and logistics happen.

First and foremost, we need to give a BIG shout out to our awesome sponsors – The Home Depot, Frogtape, Rustoleum and GMC just to name a few:

Home DepotFrog Tape 



We’re busy finalizing the sessions for the conference and we have an incredible group of designers, bloggers and business people who will be sharing their knowledge with attendees. Go here to see who will be joining us (we are still adding them so check back often!).

The conference is sold out but we will be offering five ticket giveaways on our blogs over the next few weeks:

May 13th:  Just a Girl
May 20th:  Home Stories A to Z
May 27th:  Beneath My Heart
June 3rd:  Southern Hospitality
June 10th:  Thrifty Decor Chick

If you’d like to join us and don’t have a ticket keep an eye out for each of those! And if you aren’t already following us on Facebook here than please do so – many have to sell their tickets as we get closer to the conference and will announce it there. (Just a reminder to ticket holders – there will be no transfers honored after July 1st!)

If you already have your ticket you should have received an invite to the Haven Mavens Facebook (private) page – if you didn’t email one of us {thriftydecorchick (at) gmail (dot) com} to let us know so we can get you added on. It’s a great place to chat and “meet” each other before the conference! We’ve also created a Haven Conference Instagram account – you can follow it at “havenconf”. Haven Instagram 1

We’ve also started up a linky party over at the Haven Conference site (for attendees) – if you are joining us please link up your blog and visit those who will be attending as well!

And of course, feel free to add the Haven Maven button to your blog to let everyone know you’ll be there!Haven-maven buttonAre you attending the conference this year? It’s only three months away – I can hardly believe it! Can’t wait to see you there!

Cuckoo for my clock

Hello there! I hope you’ll indulge me today while I show you something new to our home. It probably isn’t too exciting to most, but it is a piece that makes me so happy I can’t even explain it. :)

It’s actually a kind of weird how it came about. Without going into too much detail, let’s just say I have very little from my childhood. I have no toys, no Christmas ornaments – only pictures (that I treasure) and a small box of papers/trinkets from my entire childhood. All of it was lost along the way, (I touched on why a bit here), so everything that I do have means the world to me.

For some reason, a couple months ago, I started thinking about one item from when I was a kid in particular. It was a small cuckoo clock my parents got when I was very young – I don’t think there was a time when I didn’t remember it in our homes.

I have no idea why all the sudden I couldn’t stop thinking about this clock. I hadn’t though of it in about 20 years – it was the oddest thing. I had this deep ache for it though – it was just something that reminded my of my childhood. It was quirky and fun and symbolized good memories for me.

I thought about it for weeks and then dropped it. Until one day a couple weeks before Christmas when my Dad came by for a bit. We were sitting at the kitchen table and he starts telling me how he had a clock that he was going to have refurbished. My ears perked up and I asked him which one, and what do you know…he had that cuckoo clock I had been thinking about for weeks!! I thought it was long gone since the last time I’d seen it was in my Mom’s storage. All of that was lost a long time ago.

Could NOT believe it.

I had no idea he had “saved” it at one point years ago, and he had had it for about ten years – but it didn’t work and it was broken and dirty.

Seriously, freaky. I pretty much begged him for it, and I think he was surprised at how badly I wanted it. I just couldn’t believe that the one thing I had been reminiscing about for weeks was actually still around.

So for part of my Christmas Dad had it refurbished. He brought it down last week and I tell you what…I was just plain giddy:

switzerland cuckoo clock

I seriously could have cried. We hung it up and messed with it a bit (everything has to be just so for this to work properly).

I love all the detail in the wood (but not too much – it’s actually simple compared to some) and it was JUST as I remembered it. The roman numeral face:

cuckoo clock

And that little door for the bird to come out of course. :)

I anxiously waited for us to get it just right, and then Dad turned the hands of the clock to set it and that bird came out and did his “cuckoo”:

cuckoo clock

It filled me with JOY.

You know how when there’s a song from a certain time in your life, and you hear it years later and you almost feel like your in a time tunnel and you can close your eyes and there you are again?

Well, when I heard that cuckoo it took me back to a very happy time in my life and it was emotional, I have to admit. I spent that whole afternoon and evening hanging around the clock, waiting for that little bird to pop out. When it did I was JUST STUPID with happiness. I would do a little dance and would yell out to my son and husband, “DID YOU HEAR IT?? ISN’T THAT AWESOME???”

Of course they did…I just had to make sure.

Now when the Bub hears it and I’m not there, he makes sure to tell me how many times I missed the cuckoo. I love that he’s already in love with it and it will become a memory from his childhood as well.

lucerne cuckoo clock

Dad told me that my grandparents actually bought this overseas for him and Mom, so I talked to my grandma to find out more. She said they got it in 1977 (I was two), in Lucerne Switzerland. They bought one for each of their four kids, and as far as she knows, this is the only one left. Can you believe they traveled home with four of these in their suitcases?

My grandparents traveled often and to some truly amazing places, so I love that this symbolizes their adventures too. I’ve done a little bit of research on it and I believe it’s a Bucherer cuckoo clock. Like I said, it was a mess, so things like the chain and some of the woodwork were replaced and are no longer original. 

But it works and I feel like a kid when I get pull down those chains with the heavy pinecones on them every day, just like I remember my parents doing 30-(something) years ago.

It hangs on a skinny wall between our black doors in the basement – we have it down there so it doesn’t wake us up all night, and I just because I think it fits in perfectly:

black interior doors

I can’t tell you how thrilled I am to have this in my home – I’m so excited about it. I guess you could say I’m “cuckoo” for it. Ahhh yes…I went there. Did you have any doubt? ;)

Do you have lots of things from your childhood? Is there one item in particular that you miss and wish you had? Do you have a cuckoo clock that makes you dance around when you hear it every hour? :)

Zentrum Studios Tiffany Style Bookmark for Desk Set-Grapevine-Old Penny

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List Price:
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Product Description
For that special book or friend. It's also a very appropriate gift for a teacher, graduate, or hostess. It will be cherished for a lifetime........ Reminiscent of antique Tiffany Studios style filigree, Zentrum Studios has combined turn of the century filigree design with 21st century metal finishing techniques...........ZENTRUM STUDIOS is producing a line of complimentary, contemporary, accessories to match old Tiffany Studios desk sets. They are unique in themselves and are not copies of anything Tiffany ever made. As with the antiques, the patinas will vary.

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Sunday, September 29, 2013

(No dig) water hose organization

Hello there! It’s back to school time around here…I can hardly believe it. The weird thing is, now hubby is home with me during the day while the Bub goes off to school. I LOVE it. So far. ;) Seriously, it is so amazing that he will be home most days to help get him off to school and off the bus…it is truly a blessing and I’m so looking forward to this fall.

Today I’m sharing a super easy project that I didn’t think was going to be quite so easy – don’t you love when it works out like that? It’s my first project on the True Value Blog Squad this year and I’m so pleased with how it turned out. This isn’t a pretty project necessarily, but it’s an organized one…and that makes my heart sing, truly.

We have two water spigots on our house – one on each side. We added one in the building process and I’m so glad we did. But one is in a weird spot near our air conditioner on the side of the house – actually right behind the air conditioner which is just seriously brilliant planning. (That’s sarcasm.)

It’s an odd little spot that also houses the gas meter and other ugly stuff and years ago I installed pavers back there to clean it up a little bit. I didn’t put any weed blocker down though, so we’ve got lots of weeds that come up through them and a lovely tree that started growing right by our foundation. It was impossible to kill but we finally did it…but little sprouts come up every year so we have to keep on top of those. Who knew how invisible trees are??

Anyway…that corner is always a hot mess. We have used a hose holder thingamajob that you roll up and it’s a total pain in the butt. And somewhere along the way another huge lawn hose got added in (ask hubby, no idea), so we had, like 150 feet of hose there:

organizing hoses outside

I think the deal was that one wasn’t long enough, so we needed two, but two won’t fit on the hose reeler-inner-thing. And, can I just say, that black hose ALWAYS looked like a snake to me? Not cool.

Seriously, I can barely look at it in that picture. Ick.

So…I had an idea to tidy up that corner, and it first came in the form of a little spot at my True Value that I stop at every. time. I visit:

iron plant hooks

They have a huge selection of iron plant hooks and holders, and I always admire them but don’t really need another hanging plant, so I keep on walking. Well, this idea allowed me to pick one up on our trip there a few weeks ago – but more on that in a bit.

First of all, I needed a four by four post. I had one already, but ended up cutting it too short, so picked up one of those at TV too.

At first I was planning on digging a hole about a foot deep and using quick drying cement to secure it. Then I was told I really needed to go about THREE feet deep, and use one of those hole digger things. I was like, whoa. Not what I had in mind. And the more I started thinking of it, the more I realized I wasn’t sure I wanted to have this thing permanently in that spot.

So when I saw this option, I knew it was the solution:

no dig post holder

So it’s a post holder and normally you’d use it on a deck or other wood surface because you can drill down into the holes to secure it. But it’s super heavy steel so I figured it would be heavy enough to hold it upright all by itself.

And I was right:

DIY hose holder no dig

I cut the post at about 40 inches with the saw and then put it inside. Those bolts on the sides tighten up and make it super secure – it’s not going anywhere.

You can see that I just pulled out one of the pavers and it fit right in there…like it was meant to be!

Next up was the hose holder part. That’s where the iron plant hook comes in:

DIY hose holder hook

I just installed it upside down so there was plenty of room for the hose to lay in there. It’s perfect!

OK, let’s talk about that hose, shall we? You’ve seen these on TV right? Well, I’ve wanted one forEVER now, and last month while at the Mall of America, we came upon the As Seen on TV store…also known as the Greatest Store Ever.

We found one there and decided to try it out before we got another one, and I have to tell you, they ROCK. Because it rocked so much, I picked up one more at True Value:

as seen on TV pocket hoseas seen on TV pocket hose 

I think each one grows to about 50 feet long, but they stay scrunched up when not in use. I’ve used it a ton and so far it’s held up great. I LOVE them. We now have two connected on that side of the house, so it reaches around all the way to the front or all the way to the back of the patio easily.

I highly recommend them! The bonus is that they are super light and don’t take up much space. And they don’t look like a snake. Triple bonus.

Because I can’t leave well enough alone, and because I love adding a little bit of pretty when I can, I also picked up one of these planters at True Value for the top of the post:

DIY hose holder

I can’t remember what that plant is, but I had it in two planters on the patio and one just completely died for no reason (well…it could be the whole I didn’t water it enough reason, whatever). So I transplanted the others into this planter -- they were needing some sun and water but they’ve already perked up since these pics. It’s a beautiful, full plant when it’s happy.

All in all it took me maybe 20 minutes from start to finish – the not digging and no cement certainly helped!:

DIY hose organization

I’m planning on doing this to the other side of our house too, since we have the same mess over there most of the time.

Now if you are using a regular hose (that’s a little heavier) you may need to secure the post into the ground better…but I’m actually thinking it would be OK as is. You could also put some stakes through the holes into the ground to help.

Like I said, it’s not a beautiful after…but it’s much cleaner and organized:

DIY no dig hose holder

OK, that’s beautiful to me. ;)

We can now walk right over to the spigot to turn on the water for the first time in years. It’s the little things. I love it! Of course the little planter on top is optional, but I think it’s cute. I also found it’s useful for holding extra sprayers too, so that’s an option.

How to do you keep your water hoses under control? Does your husband collect them like mine? :) Next up I need to redo that whole paver area, but for now I’m just enjoying the clean space!


I was one of the bloggers selected by True Value to work on the DIY Squad. I have been compensated for my time commitment to the program as well as writing about my experience. I have also been compensated for the materials needed for my DIY project. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments. For more DIY inspiration, take a look at True Value’s Pinterest boards!

Ws Bath Collections Doppiolo Reversible 6X Double Extension Makeup Mirrors 7402Kk

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Doppiolo Makeup Mirrors by KohINoor in the WS Bath Collection have lave 9.1" diameter mirrors with pure silver backing for an undistorted view and thereby, perfect makeup application. The double extension arm brings the mirror out to a maximum 14.6" from the wall with your choice of 3x or 6x magnification power mirror lenses, each with a 1x (no) magnification on the obverse. A The mirror includes a balljoint swivel under the mirror frame itself, able to tilt and rotate in any direction. A In addition the doubleextension arm pivots left and right at the mounting plate and again at the elbow. A The possibilities are limitless. A It's easy to get perfect positioning easy on the eyes. A The structure is polished Chrome plated Brass with Chromed ABS around the mirror. A Spiffy.Made in Italy by KohINoor.

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Sharing A Story Of Faith

Family pictures after the loss of a child are painful.  There is always someone missing.  The header photo above is our first professional photo in years, and I wondered how to include our Joe.

The teddy bear was Joe's favorite stuffed animal, bought in Germany when I was pregnant with him.  We visited the Steiff factory and our oldest son, James, picked out a monkey for himself and the teddy for Joe. 

I also want to share a very special book with you.  It is written by Lisa Murphy, who travelled with our group when we adopted Lan Lan.  Her book, With An Open Heart, shares a story similar to that of Teresa; it is written about her sweet son Daniel, who passed away following heart surgery.

Lisa writes from the heart and shares Daniel's story with such grace and faith.  I put off reading it for a long while, simply because I knew it would bring so many reminders of our own loss.  I wish I had read it sooner.  I did cry.  A lot.  But I also felt so much joy in hearing Daniel's inspirational story.

You will laugh.  You will cry.  You will travel along with the Murphy's to China, three times.  You will get to know Daniel, an amazing little boy so full of life and love!  In the end, you will experience the family's courage and deep faith, and you will be inspired. 

The French Reflection Petite Vanity Elegance Glass Base 91/2 Reversible Makeup Mirror Nickel 3X Optical

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The mirror is 91/2" in diameter on a short frame, with a total height of just 123/4". It's reversible by flipping the mirror over in its yoke, from the magnified side to the opposite mirror on the back which is not magnified.Although nonlighted, the image quality of French Reflection mirrors is outstanding on its own merit, usually more than adequate in a reasonably welllit area. A To boot, there's a heavy, thick, and attractive glass baseThe mirror pivots up and down in its yoke and pivots left and right A Select finishes from Chrome, Nickel, Gold, or Titanium (Matt Nickel,). A 3x, 5x, and 7x Magnifications are available with regular silverbacked mirrors or with Optically Ground Glass silverbacked mirrors for the 3x and 7x magnifications. A See the tab below for a full explanation.Mirrors are shipped via 3rd day Air at no cost to you. A Returns carry 15 restocking fee.

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Sprite HO-WH High Output Shower Filter, White

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July in review and no-spend August

Hello everybody, happy Friday to you! I hope you’ve had a great week – I’m still at the Haven Conference and having a blast! Well…I hope I am anyway. I wrote this before I left. ;)

I’ll be back next week with some more DIY, but for now I’m reviewing the big posts from July and I have a fun little announcement at the end that I’m getting excited about. :)

First up last month I shared how I tackled my first true floating shelves:

DIY floating shelves

These are great storage for some of the Bub’s Lego sets – I love having them on display but these also get them out of the way.

Next I shared the details on the powder room redo:

ikea hemnes vanity

I covered the sources and details for everything in the room, so if you had questions on anything it should be answered there!

I did a little organizing (and prettifying) in the dining room – those skinny little cabinets hold a TON of stuff:

dining room organization built ins

I’m so glad I decided to incorporate that closed storage in the built ins!

I shared more about our latest RV trip and the little cabin in the woods that we stayed in:

cabin in woods

Many of you asked the name of the cabins/RV park and it’s called Neshonoc Lakeside in LaCrosse Wisconsin. :)

Next up I showed you a FUN new DIY product – painters tape that comes in shapes!:

chevron painters tape

This is the first chevron in our house and it may be the last. We’ll see – I’m still not hooked. I do like this little touch of it though. It’s staying for awhile at least!

Next up I hope to use the wave version of the shape tape. ;)

I shared my plan for our mud room redo in this post, including some lovely inspiration pics:

white mud room wood floors


I was busy working on our master bedroom in July and I shared more about our new bed here and the how-to on the tufted headboard here:

DIY tufted headboard

I’ve made a few more changes in there since and I’m SO pleased with how the room is coming together! Our bed is still my favorite part. ;)

Last week I shared the ways I deal when cash is low. I’ve learned over the years it’s a horrible feeling and I’ve always had a few tried and true methods to keep my spirits up:

cleaning out the car I loved your thoughts too – there were some great ideas in the comments!

This week I shared how I’m not killing my hydrangeas anymore: how to grow hydrangeas

I’ve made a concentrated effort to learn more about them and it’s paid off!

So I’m excited about August! This month I’ve decided to do another “no spend” month. I first did this a couple summers ago and actually quite enjoyed it! I have so many projects that need to be finished up, so many spots that need decluttering, and I just enjoy trying to work with what we already have.

So this month I won’t spend any cash on DIY or decorating projects. I have one that we’ve scheduled that will probably happen, more on that later. But otherwise I hope to stick to only what we’ve got! I hope you’ll be inspired!

Take care all and have a great weekend! :)

*P.S. As soon as I get back from Haven we head out for the NKOTB concert.

AWW. yeah.

Can’t wait!!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

The Long Road to A Dream


A day filled with emotion.
When I walked into the ceremony I was all smiles. 

Until I looked up into the stands and saw my family.  And then I cried.  I cried because of all the sacrifices we had ALL made to make this day happen. 

I remembered the movie that set it all in motion—The Pursuit of Happyness—circa January 2007.  I was inspired to reach for my dream of finishing my bachelor’s, getting my MSW, and working in the field of child welfare and adoption. 

I signed up for classes at a local community college the very next week.  Public Speaking 220.  I still remember the main idea: tell them what you’re going to tell them, then tell them, then tell them what you just told them.  Never admit to being nervous and remember, people want to hear what you have to say!
It was an exciting time.  Just a few months before, our son Joe had been given a clean bill of health following his cancer treatment.  And after a long period of waiting, we were very close to being matched in our adoption process with Vu.

Then boom!  Joe had a recurrence of cancer.  Lots of questions about how, and whether, to proceed with both college and our adoption, but Joe encouraged us, and after a twisty road with God driving the boat, we excitedly added a new photo to the fridge: our new son Vu, waiting in Vietnam.
I finished Public Speaking with a final, emotional speech about international adoption, then signed up for biology, sure that Joe would beat cancer this time, just as easily as the last.  

I dropped out near the end of the term, wanting to spend precious time with Joe. 
And that summer, Joe died. 

The whole world stopped.  I knew I would never go back to college, never get my degree, never work in adoption.  None of that mattered.  My life would never go on.  I could never recover.  I only wanted to be with my family.  I only wanted to get our sweet Vu home and never do anything ever again!
And then Vu came home and retaught me about joy, hope, and resilience!  LIFE!  Even amidst the grief and loss.  LIFE!  My sweet boy, who had lost everything and everyone, yet woke up everyday with a smile on his face and JOY pulsing through his body! 

With the encouragement of family, friends, and fellow social workers, I applied to the University, transferred college credits from four previous colleges (some 25 years old!), and signed up for Sociology 337.  That was January, 2008, and the rest, as they say, is history.
I completed my Bachelor of Science, in Child & Family Studies, in 2010.

And now, my Master of Social Work, in 2013.  It's been a long seven years.

So many papers.  So many books.  So many group projects, and community service projects, and practicums, and internships, and speeches, and tests, and ever more papers and papers and papers. 
And when I walked into the graduation ceremony, I looked up and saw my kids and I remembered all their encouragement, and everything they had given to make this day happen—the times I couldn't be there to tuck them in, and the times I missed their games, and the times the older kids got the younger ones off to school in the morning.

And I looked at my husband and remembered all his encouragement, and the times he ran himself into the night, getting all the kids everywhere they needed to go, helping them with homework, making dinner.  And never complaining (and did I mention writing big checks to a certain university?).

And I looked at my mom and remembered all the years she encouraged me to complete my education, from the time I was just a little girl, when I watched her do the same.  How she drove 1 1/2 hours quite often to help me with childcare, especially when we had a newly adopted child.

And I was so, so sad my dad wasn't there, even tho he was with me in spirit. Just memories of his wisdom about how an education and hard work are keys to opportunity.  

It's never too late to reach for your dreams.

The hooding ceremony with my favorite professor

It's been a long road.  One full of sacrifice, grief, loss, joy and surprises. One that could only occur because of our awesome God, my family and friends--sisters, relatives, and BFFs who sometimes thought I had fallen off the face of the earth--yet continued to cheer me on.