Recently, I was bored.  This led to be deciding to paint my nightstands.  Originally, they were a light wood from Target, just under $20 a piece.  They no longer have the exact color, because I purchased them in 2001.

Thirteen years, and numerous moves, the shelves are still holding up just fine.  I was just sick of the color.  So HJ and I pulled a gray paint can from the basement, and spent a weekend updating the nightstands.

PicMonkey Collage

That was going to be it for the bedroom update, so I have no before pictures of the whole room (what a bad blogger I am).  The next week, a family friend offered to give me their queen size sleigh bed.  I did not have anything other then a frame/mattress/boxspring, so I took them up on the “free” offer without knowing what it really looked like.  I figured if I didn’t like it, I would refinish it.

So glad I did, it is beautiful.

Also, I was at Target last week, and cartwell had an app for 50% bedding, combined with a few other discounts, I scored this comforter for $20.  If you have been to my house, you know the dog has a tendency to tear holes in blankets and bedding, so spending money on expensive bedding is not worth it.

If you’re keeping track, that makes both beds in our house FREE.

* The shelf in my room was scored in my parent’s basement, I believe it was my grandma’s*

I was able to give my bedroom a whole new look for $20!  I love getting a great new look that doesn’t put a dent in my bank account.


Can you tell I was not quite sure how to title this post?  That is because last Monday night was one of those ridiculously crazy nights.  My child didn’t even stop JUMPING on the bed until 11pm.  He was nuts.  Here is how it all went down…

On Monday nights, my mom (Nana) usually comes to our house to watch HJ while I go to a work out class.  Last Monday, I was thinking of all the things on my to-do list and did NOT want to go.  But I did.  I got ready, drove to class started walking in the building, and was stopped by the instructor informing me class was cancelled.  I may have “WOOHOO’ed”, she may have given me a strange glance.

I skipped back to my car making a mental list of everything I needed at Target (wipes, diapers, crayons, etc.).  I called Nana to tell her my change of plans.  She answered saying, “Um, I did something.”

Now what the hell does that mean?

“I told HJ if he gets rid of his binkys, he can get a fish.”

We have tried every tactic in the book to get rid of the b’s (yes, they were called b’s at our house).  Nothing worked.  I cut of the tip, he found more.  We gave it to a new baby, he had stashed others under his bed.  We went to the circus and got an elephant, he flipped sh*t.

Recently, I had come to terms with the fact that he might have a b at his high school graduation.  I was cool with that.

But apparently, he was all about this fish.  So I ran home and we searched high and low for every binky in the house and put them in a bag.  They got in the car to HJ chattering away about getting a fish named shark and it was going to be HUGE!  Nana and HJ then brought the 5 b’s down the road to Wal-Mart.  I stayed home and took the dog on a jog (ok, a walk, don’t judge).

Then my little monkey pulled in the driveway with the biggest grin on his face.

Apparently he handed his bag of binkys over to the Wal-Mart lady without hesitating.  The lady hesitated though.  She asked Nana if she would like them back.  Nana followed my instructions of “NO, GET RID OF THEM!”

HJ was so excited!  He was bouncing up and down holding the fish (poor lil fish).  We brought him inside to get him all set up.

We officially named him Binky the Shark.  That way when HJ said “Where’s my b?” I could say “Oh, your fish?” (it has worked!)

The fish bowl also has a light, so we decided to put it on his nightstand to help keep the monsters away.

HJ thanked Nana for his new fish and sat on his bed watching Binky the Shark for a long time.  I curled up next to him to tell him how proud of him I was and how he is becoming such a big boy.

And then the fire alarms started BLARING.

In our house, the fire alarms are all connected.  If one goes off, they all go off.  There is also a lady’s voice yelling “FIRE! FIRE! FIRE!”

HJ starts jumping on the bed screaming, the dog is running around barking and I am trying to figure out what the hell is going on.

I run around the house looking for smoke, not seeing or smelling anything, but the alarms WON’T STOP.  I decide its best to get everyone out of the house just in case…and because I want HJ to know if he hears that, to get outside.

But then, I can’t find HJ.  Or the dog.  They got scared and both hid.

I finally tracked them down at totally opposite sides of the house.  At this time, I determined we need to work on emergency evacuation plans.  If this had been an actual fire, we would have been doomed.  It took us almost 10 minutes to get outside.

Unsure of what to do, I left HJ and the dog with the neighbor and walked back in the house.  Because that’s what you should do in case of a fire, right?

Then I called 911.  I told them there was no smoke, but they wanted to send a truck out just in case.

Not only did they send out 1 fire truck, they sent out 3.  Plus 2 cop cars.  Sirens blaring.

You want to know how to make sure your child is not tired right before bedtime?  Call in fire trucks.

He was doing somersaults and jumping jacks and running laps and pretending to fall down and yelling at trucks and firefighters.

And I am hoping my house isn’t too messy as 3 hot firefighters start walking through my house.  The rest of the firefighters decided to stand outside and laugh at my crazy son and panicked dog.  Neighbors were running over.  And texting.  And calling.

After about 30 minutes, they determined it was an electrical issue.  And would probably happen again.

By this town, every kid in the neighborhood was in our yard and they all wanted to see Binky the Shark…so everyone came inside.

Finally, about 9:30, everyone was gone.  I was trying to get HJ to calm down, but we were both pretty wired.

At 11, I finally got him to lay down in bed.  I figured he must be exhausted.  He did not mention the binky at all.  And was excited about his fish tank as a nightlight.  I kissed him goodnight and shut his door.

Then I heard “MOM!”

I peeked my head back in.



We strategically placed a stuffed animal so that Binky the Shark could no longer “stare” at HJ, and he finally crashed.

Also, he had buyer’s remorse.





I looove reading younghouselove and you all know my super love for pinterest.  So last week, when YHL blogged about a pinterest challenge, I knew I wanted in.

I have been eyeing these striped curtains for a while, and it seemed so easy!  I picked up some cheap white panels at Target and got ready to paint.  I taped off the stripes onto the curtains (I decided to go wider then the original curtains) and started painting with some already owed gray paint.  The original source mentioned that it would take a few coats of paint for the light to not shine through the stripes…and it did!  After it was done, I realized how stiff the curtains were.  Luckily, the original source had also mentioned that problem and said to throw it in the dryer to soften it up…which I did…and the curtains did not soften up much.  They looked silly.  Bad.  This led to an unhappy SingleMama…UNTIL inspiration struck.  I quickly ran to Hobby Lobby (well as quickly as one can run anywhere with a toddler in tow) and picked up some Heat Seam (since I can’t sew a lick) and some dark gray fabric.  I cut the fabric to match the size of the stripes I wanted (plus an inch on each side for my ironed on hem) and ironed it onto the newly purchased white panels.  and….

LOVE.  I love it.  Seriously.  Beautiful.  The fabric lays so much nicer than the painted curtains.  So while I basically threw $20 down the drain (not to mention a toddler nap time) I love the final results.  Anyone else do the pinterest challenge?

Sorry for my vent on Monday.  But I admit, it DID make me feel a tad better.  I was on such a roll, I forgot to include my 30 to 30 list…whoops!


Remember on my 30 to 30 list when I showed the “happy” fabric I received in the mail (I ordered it from  Well guess what?  I made curtains!  No-sew, happy curtains at that.

I decided my patio doors needed something light and fun, so I decided to veto the blinds.  And when you are the only one in the house who can veto things, it usually goes your way 🙂

I went to Target and purchased 2 white curtain panels for $10/piece.  Then I measured my happy fabric to match the width of the curtain (plus an additional inch on each side), and measured it to the height I wanted (it was just over 1/3 of the curtains height).  That’s when things got serious.  And no-sew heat hem became my friend (purchased at Wal-Mart for around $3).  I ironed the sides of the happy fabric down so it looked like it had been sewed.  Then, I laid it on the curtain and attached it with another strip of the no-sew hem.  And VIOLA!  Curtains!

I used little clippy things (yep, that is the technical term) to hang them…but forgot about that when I measured where to hang the curtain rod.

So they are a little long.  I might just remove the clippy things and actually put them on the rod.

And a close up:

I love how bright and cheery they make the kitchen feel!  I am not sure how long the no-sew hem will last (I hope it is a permanent thing!).  Also, I completely over ordered the fabric.  Not being that crafty of a person, I wasn’t sure how many yards to order, and I ordered about 5 times more than I needed…meaning you will see a few more projects out of the happy fabric!

The total project came out cheaper than what I would have spent on the curtains I found on etsy, which is the only place I could find chevron curtains.  I also decided not to do the whole curtain in the chevron fabric (I thought it might look a bit too wild for me).

Anyone else have fun projects they are working on?


30 to 30 update…Keep Smiling!

Day 1: Treated myself to Starbuck’s, and then treated the car behind me!

Day 2: Made dinner for a friend

Day 3: Started a book

Day 4: Attempted to make cookies, ate cookie dough.

Day 5: Night out

Day 6: Enjoyed the sun

Day 7: Cute fabric in the mail

Day 8: Bug catching

Day 9: Seed was finally laid in our yard (hopefully we have grass soon!)

Day 10: Yogurt!

Day 11: Friday night football

Day 12: Homecoming fun

Day 13: Pumpkin patch

Day 14: Nana came over to watch HJ so I could go to a work-out class

Day 15: Kindermusik! 

Day 16: Hair cut

Day 17: My friend Kristin brought her boys over for dinner.  We threw some pizza in the oven while the boys ran around.  We ate dinner (while the boys ran around) and caught up (while the boys ran around).

Day 18: My sister and her kids came to town!  HJ was soooo excited to see them.

Day 19: Family fun day!  We spent the day with my sister and her kids again as well as my parents.  I also scored big time at a garage sale on Toy Story toys

Day 20: My mom and I went to the craft show at UNI.  I got a few cute stocking stuffers!

Day 21: I found out I had helped a girl land a job, she was so happy!

Day 22: Went to dinner with a friend I had not talked to in a while, it was great to catch up.

I am slowly revealing the rooms of our new house, hoping it gives me time to make them a little more presentable :).  Last week, I showed off HJ’s room…one of the cozy-est spots in the house.

Today, the much less exciting BATHROOM!

HJ’s bathroom is also the main bathroom in the house, so while I wanted it to be fun for him, I didn’t want it to scream, “KID’S BATHROOM!!!”.  So I had to take it down a notch and go against my thoughts of the cutesy shower curtains I came across.  I also love the crisp and clean look of white bathrooms.  HJ and I both agreed to paint the bathroom a grey/blue and leave everything else white.

The bathroom is a bit snug, so it was hard to get “great” pictures (sorry!).

Wow, those lights look briiight.  This is when you first walk in the door (the car is HJ’s bubble bath).

The white shower curtain is from Target.

The kid theme we did go with?  Whales!  I love whales!  HJ’s little froggy step stool is what we use to brush his teeth and wash his hands.  He is always trying to heave it over to the sink (he is quite strong enough…yet).  See that little wall indent where the stool is?  I would love to get some white shelves there.  Someday.

Here is a close up of the cute wall art from LullabyArt.  Target also had some whale items available this summer and my mom found these cute hand towels


And there ya have it, the whale bathroom!  Probably the most boring room in the house…whoops.  Least it can only get better!

30 to 30 update…Keep Smiling!

Day 1: Treated myself to Starbuck’s, and then treated the car behind me!

Day 2: Made dinner for a friend

Day 3: Started a book

Day 4: Attempted to make cookies, ate cookie dough.

Day 5: Night out

Day 6: Enjoyed the sun

Day 7: Cute fabric in the mail

Day 8: Bug catching

Day 9: Seed was finally laid in our yard (hopefully we have grass soon!)

Day 10: Yogurt!

Day 11: Friday night football

Day 12: Homecoming fun

Day 13: Pumpkin patch

Day 14: Nana came over to watch HJ so I could go to a work-out class

Day 15: Kindermusik!  HJ is in a music class on Tuesday nights. It is a blast to watch him run around with the other kids.  I am amazed at all the instructions he can follow (he must listen to other people more so then mom!)

Day 16: I took a half day off work…because the most wonderful hair dresser I know travelled from Des Moines to give me a cut and color.  She hacked off around 6 inches in my kitchen.  I reacted with “ohmygodwhthaveyoudoneitissofrikkenshort!”.  But secretly, it looks a little sassy…I will post pics eventually!

Holy crap I can’t believe we are almost halfway done with my list…I AM NOT READY TO BE THIRTY!!

HJ, Ty dog and myself are getting settled in the new house.  The first room I wanted to make feel finished was HJ’s.  That way he would be settled, feel at home and hopefully sleep like a champ (right…).  So here is his room:

There is his big boy truck bedding.  The bedding is by JoJo designs, and I purchased it on Beyond Bedding after scouring the internet for the best price.  I actually found the bedrail at a 2nd hand store for $5 (I love bargains!).  See the cute green night stand?  That was actually my grandma’s (which was a dark wood), then my mom’s (still dark), then it was mine (white with blue stars) and then Nana painted it green for HJ.  She painted it to match his monkey crib bedding, so I was thrilled when it matched the truck bedding too!  His lamp is from JC Penney (also purchased for the monkey room).  It was never really used in his nursery though, because he would kick and pull at it.  Clearly he is becoming so mature!

Moving on…HJ’s curtain’s came with the bedding.  His baskets of books (which is never that organized) are from Land of Nod.  Ty refused to move from the window for the picture…

I love the cute sticker decals!  Nana bought those for HJ from Target.  He loves to run his toy trucks along the roadway (which I am sure is great on the walls).  They are just stickers and easily remove!

The next corner…HJ’s dresser (from JC Penney) and changing pad (which he never actually will lay on anymore).  This is also where we threw his baskets of toys!  And finally, his super cute truck canvas pictures!  I purchased these on etsy from LullabyArt.  I actually sent the artist the link with his bedding and she made the pictures based on that!  How amazing is she?!?  HJ loves pointing out the trucks to everyone who comes in his room.

I love how HJ’s room has turned out so far, and he is so excited to show new visitors his cool truck room.

30 to 30 update…Keep Smiling!

Day One: Treated myself to Starbuck’s, and then treated the car behind me!

Day Two: Made dinner for a friend

Day 3: Started a book.

It was bound to happen soon.  The public temper tantrum.  I can hardly blame the kid for a few reasons….we are in the process of moving so both of our lives are a bit hectic…and the store was taunting my child.

I know, I know what you’re thinking, “the store was taunting him, really?”.  But I should tell you, my son is obsessed with cars and trucks.  OBSESSED.  I mean, he brought his own toy truck into Target that day and showed it to everyone while saying “TUC!” (that is how he says truck).

I went to the back of the store to grab diapers.  HJ got very excited pointing to a sippy cup and shouting “CAR!!” (from the Pixar movie)

I told him, yes, good job, that is a car.  But then the next aisle had lots of cars (I am blaming Pixar for this).  HJ was getting restless and excited.  Then I go the bath aisle.  And did you know the Cars movie is selling EVERY TYPE OF PRODUCT IMAGINABLE?!?!   This is where chaos ensued.  HJ Threw himself out of the cart and started running around screaming CAR CAR CAR!!!  The next aisle had CAR pillows that he threw onto the floor while shouting at me.  While I picked those up and said something along the lines of  “No no my precious child”, I looked over just in time to see him pick up a CAR piggy bank and get ready to slam it down onto the ground.  By this time, he is screaming and I am frazzled.  I tell him we are leaving and begin to walk away.  I make it part way down the aisle when HJ yells, “NO!” and then grabs a hold of my knit skirt and runs away.  Pulling my skirt down.  At Target.  On a busy Sunday.  Exposing my underwear covered booty to the store.  A family walked by me looking horrifed…I am hoping it was because of my screaming child and not because I was standing there in my underwear…but I think it was the underwear.

Anyone else have embarrassing tantrum stories?  Please. please tell me I am not alone.

HJ and I were at Target, stocking up on all the essentials (ie, I was looking at clothing).  I had given HJ a snack trap full of puffs. 

I love snack traps, whoever invented them is a genius.  They are little containers with a lid that you can reach in and grab small snacks, but it won’t spill if someone throws or shakes them.

HJ gets excited just seeing the snack trap, because he knows it’s full of goodies!!

Anyway…at Target with the snack trap…

I notice it is running low on puffs, so I go to refill it.  That is when I notice something in the snack trap doesn’t look right.  It is not “puff” like at all.  I take off the lid and shriek (yes, out loud, at Target).  OMG.  HJ put dog food in his snack trap.  Eww.

HJ is thrilled with my reaction and starts cracking up, which makes me laugh.  So there we are, laughing in the middle of target, with a snack trap full of dog food…ok so it wasn’t full, there were only 3 pieces, but still.  I am not sure if any of the dog food was consumed or not, I keep telling myself it wasn’t.

After our Target run, we are at home.  HJ is holding a different snack trap and walks right over to the dog food bowl, where he proceeds to take the food out and put it in his snack trap yet again.  I think I will definitely be keeping a closer eye on him!