Thursday

Need a Fun Fall Kid Craft? Fall Decor - Shaved Crayon Stained Glass

This is a great fall kid craft that I have done many times with my kids or in their classrooms.  The colors can be so vibrant and fall like and is a great way to decorate come fall or any season!  It does need adult supervision though.    






DIRECTIONS

First off, lay out a sheet of wax paper on the table.



Have fun by using a pencil sharpener (can purchase a set of these at the dollar store) and begin shaving your favorite colors onto the paper.



Once you have thinly spread out the shavings lay another piece of wax paper over the top.

Have your iron setting on low and carefully iron right over the top of the wax paper (this would be for an older sibling or an adult to do)  Some of the crayon wax may squeeze out of the wax paper so putting a towel under the project is a good idea.



Now you have your beautiful "stain glass" and now you just need to print  out your favorite shape, (just Google "leaf shape image" or whatever you are interested in) put it under the wax paper and use a black sharpie to draw the shape.



Carefully cut out your shape and enjoy!!



You can tape these to your window or insert a hole punch and hang them!  A bunch of leaves would be a beautiful classroom decoration.




Some other seasonal ideas would be using green crayon shavings with red dots for Christmas trees or what about white and blue for a snowman!  This can be a craft for ALL seasons, it's just my mind is focused on beautifully changing leaves right now - :-)

Be sure and check out this fun ACORN treat post I did from last fall.  You can put it in cute packaging and give it to a teacher or as a fun fall treat in your children's lunch!

blog acorns1

What is your favorite fall kid craft?  If they are simple, tell us in the comments!  Be sure to tell us if you have any other advice or tips for a craft like this. :-)

Tuesday

My Friends Shabby Chic Pergola and Woodsy Walkway

Anyone need help with making their yard look beautiful?  I know I do!  My friend Valerie sent me pictures of her backyard and told me the story behind it all.

Have you ever heard of an Akebia Vine or Lime Scotch Moss?  You'll want to know about them after you see these pictures!!  

Valerie's Backyard


Can you believe that VINE!!!   Valerie told me it is the called an Akebia vine.  It has a cream color in the spring that is very fragrant.  The rest of the year, the vine is just green.  

If I remember right, that vine is only 5 years old.  I NEED that now!!!  I guess it's a very vigorous grower, so vigorous that in some sounthern (hot) states it's considered a "weed" but for us colder climate states it's a great choice.  For those who are wondering, we are a zone 5 and get LOTS of snow in the winter.


I love the white furniture with red accents and the white candle chandelier.






I have seen lamp posts like the one below at Costco for under 200.00.  The just plug into an outlet and away you go!  I love the ambiance it adds.



Next is her beautiful walkway.  She used lime scotch moss between the flagstone.  She mentioned that a lot of times landscape companies will have SCRAP flagstone that they will just give you....ya, for FREE!  Be sure and ask your local company for some scraps before you decide to spend a lot of money buying it.  (Don't you just love good hints like that, in a way, this is what blogging is all about - right?)



You have to see the before picture.....makes you really appreciate the after!



The Scotch Moss is really starting to fill in.  I love how it makes the pathway feel so woodsy.



You have to love using those paper lanterns outside!  It brings so much character to an area.



What do you guys think???  Did you get inspired for your own backyard?  

Do you have a favorite plant you can tell us about?

 I am ready to start planting today! 


Sunday

My Blog Needs More Comments {smiley face}

I love comments.  

I love feeling like I am talking to real people.




But sometime during my beginning years of blogging, I ended up selecting in my comment settings that you had to have a Google account in order to leave a comment.

Why would I do that???

Because I'm not tough skinned.

A few times I would receive comments that were from people just trying to be MEAN!!  It was horrible and to be honest, I let those few bad comments ruin it for me.   I remember one comment on a post when I was so excited about building our house.  I had put up pictures of our house plans and the commenter went OFF about how ugly my house plans were and said they hope I didn't actually PAY to have the plans drawn up because it looked so generic and had no style.

Believe it or not, I have had a few comments of that sort and I just was fed up and said, FORGET
THIS, I am going to go to my settings and make it so that only people with a Google account can leave a comment.  With a click of a button, I made it so no one could leave me those "anonymous" comments.  (With a Google account you have a name attached to your comment, those mean people ALWAYS left the comment anonymously)

but then......

the crickets began chirping......

chirp.....chirp...... chirp 

In the wilderness it's a good noise.

On a blog....not such a good thing. :-)



I thought it might be worth the trade that I no longer had to worry about the "TROLLS" out there but I miss the dialogue, and I'll be honest, I miss the encouragement.  I love hearing if my ideas inspired you to try something new or if you had another tip to leave about something I had just written about.

What can I say?  A one man show just isn't as much fun - right??  


 

I also really missed feeling like I had readers. :-)  I mean sure, I can SEE that I have over 1200 subscribers etc etc, but I didn't hear them!

So, I am announcing, I "freed" up the comment section again!  Now anyone can leave me a comment.  It's worth dealing with a few of the bad guys to hear from all my GOOD blogging friends!

I want you to know that I read every comment that comes in - actually the comment goes directly to my personal Selina inbox.  A lot of times I will reply to a comment from my email if the commenter has their account connected to an email.

PLEASE NOTE that if you have not set up your google account to an email, there is no way for me to respond to your comment directly!  I have to go back into my actual post and comment back just on the post which a lot of times, you may never see! (plus it takes a lot of time to go back into the post and write out my reply, it's so much easier to just click "reply" from my inbox!) I always feel bad when the person who comments is a "no-reply blogger" because it means I can't reply directly back to you )-: Oh and also, if you are reading comments and think, WOW, how rude she never answered that persons question, the reason would be that I DID answer the question just directly from my inbox to theirs.  :-)  (I'm covering every angle here aren't I!! ha!)

Be sure and check if you have your Google account set up to an email -  you can click this logo to see the simple steps on how to do that.


simply square button


ALSO I have made a secret incentive to leave me a comment - hee,hee.

There is no doubt that building backlinks (your blog's URL listed on other blogs) is the best way to improve your website's search engine optimization (SEO) and gain a higher ranking with top search engines.  It's actually a really big deal for growth!!  Some people pay money just to have their text link on the front page of someones blog.  I'd like to "give back" to you guys and let YOUR blog get more recognition so I added a "TOP COMMENTERS" widget to my sidebar.  I suppose it's my little way of saying thank you for your comments.  :-)


Now you can see my rockstar commenters on my sidebar, I totally appreciate you!
(very close in the running is Olga, Anne, Caren, Jessica, Ann and Lauren)

Of course, I truly appreciate ALL my readers, comments or not.


Here is my question for you guys......I know there are a lot of  you that don't comment because you think it's too confusing.  Hello mom and mother in law :-)  

What would help in explaining how to do it?  
(Great, I'm asking people who don't know HOW to comment, to leave me a comment.)

OK 

For those that do leave comments on blogs, what is your favorite way to do it?  Do you like the pop up box, or the embedded comment form where it goes directly at the bottom of the posts?

Do you guys HATE having the captions that you have to write in to get the comment published? (I believe doing that cuts way back on the spam)

Can you tell me if it is now simple to comment on my blog?  Seriously, even if you write "testing 1...2...3..."  I'll be happy you tried it out. 

Will you give it a shot mom?  :-)

Thanks my friends!

~ Selina




Thursday

Fall Foliage and Front Doors

I know I'm really having fun with this fall pumpkin decor stuff!

 
 
 
I also love how mature flowers bloom come fall.  Here are some fun before and after pictures :-)
 
Unfortunately, where I live, in another month or two the ground will be covered in SNOW!
 
My very first window box in JUNE:


 
and then September!
 
 

Love that (although you can't see the pretty box anymore!)
 
And the front door plants really took off!
 
JUNE:
 
 
SEPTEMBER!
 
 
 
I picked up that Fall Wreath last year at Hancock Fabrics for FOUR dollars!!!!  It was end of the season and 90% off.  Isn't it the best, end of the year clearances :-)

 

 
And here is some fun photos of the iron bowl filled with pumpkins and pinecones!  (I need two of those bowls so I can keep one on the table and one outside!!)
 

 
 
Oh the sad puppy, anytime I leave the front door he gives me this look.....even though I was coming right back in!

 
How did your garden grow?? (is that a nursery rhyme?)
 
 Was it a good year for your plants? 
 
I don't really have a green thumb so when I see RESULTS, I get excited :-)
 
My neighbor has a REALLY good green thumb.....you have to remember my Mother in Law is my neighbor :-) 
 
My Mother in Laws fountain and hanging flower basket.

 
Thanks to her, I had a good bloom furtilizer.  Tricks of the trades my friends, tricks of the trade.
 
Linking up to Rhoda's It's Fall Party!
 
 
 

 

Tuesday

Fall Table Decor - Thrft Store Style

You all know I have a love for thrift stores, it's the whole treasure hunting thing.



Well this particular day happened to be "stuff an entire bag of clothes for $4.00" day.  My thoughts were, "This could be FUN!"  I found a ton of great clothes for my 5, 9 and 11 year old.  I honestly can't imagine buying clothes full price for my kids. (They just grow out of them or ruin them within a month or two!)  If I don't buy their clothes at the thrift store, it's at Target for 70% off.  I promise, they have cute clothes and don't look like rag a muffins.  Promise.



Anyway, I ran across this Pottery Barn Burlap table decor thing while shopping at the thrift store.





I wondered if it could be labeled as a head covering just somehow and I could stick it in my clothing bag.  (Maybe???)


The sweet older lady at the cashier just looked at me and said, No, she didn't think I could call it a head covering.....BUT instead of ringing it up at $5.00 (which I wasn't going to pay, I mean HEY I just stuffed 50.00 worth of clothes in my bag for 4.00!) she rang it up for 2.00.  I love that particular cashier.  I'll always wait in her line even if it means double the time.

I picked up these pumpkin plates on an earlier date but they are so cute and fall like I had to show you again.  Added to that collection is now a .50 pear jar......can it get any cuter????  Each plate cost .75 cents. 



So here is what I did with my $2.00 thrift store find.  I bought a few squash at a little fruit stand.







A few weeks ago (as my weekly readers know!) I found this iron bowl at a garage sale for 6.00.  I had fun playing around with it on the table, but may move it outside on the steps too!


I LOVE the color orange! 


I just "dolled" up the bowl with the pumpkin and pinecones. 




OH and check out this BEAUTIFUL rustic box Katrina from Bunches and Bits made from leftover pieces of her fence!  I want an old fence to take apart!!!


Centerpiece

HAPPY FALL EVERYONE!!!!



What's your favorite way to decorate for fall???  Do you like the "harvest" part or the scary Halloween decor? :-)  Or both! 

Linking up to Thrifty Decor Chick

Sunday

Trouble Decorating your Basement? How to spice it up.

When it comes to decorating the basement, we seem to put all our leftovers there and it's hard to get excited about it.  I wanted to write a post that had some fun ideas on how to spice up your basement for not a lot of money, or even using those "old" leftovers!   Here is my basement and what I did with it.




I found these umbrellas in New Mexico for 13.00 a piece - I just loved them but never knew where to put them in my old house.  Now I have them tied up with fishing line as a focal point in my  basement!


BEFORE:


AFTER





BEFORE:


AFTER:





GAME SECTION BEFORE:



AFTER:



BEFORE:



AFTER:







A few ideas on how to SPICE up your downstairs:

1. Use that large empty wall space to do a fun photo gallery with all your family photos. I have the easiest tutorial on how to hang a photo gallery, be sure and check it out, it has saved me so much time and energy!





2. Paint ONE wall an accent color completely different from the rest, or do a fun stencil print like Rhoda's from  Southern Hospitality.  



The carved "Yankee Doodle" art piece was my husband's grandpas. He bought it in the 70's in San Francisco - it's quite a conversation starter!

Southern Hospitality's Stencil Accent Wall

stencil wall

3. I recommend buying at least one new accessory to bring "joy" into decorating your space filled with all your old stuff.


4. Use your new accessory or art piece as inspiration for your color scheme. Sew some simple pillows or grab a throw blanket that also accents that theme.  My entire red American Clay wall came from inspiration from the poppy art I bought on clearance from Bed Bath and Beyond.  I did a similar earthy red clay wall in a step by step tutorial if you are curious how to do your own.


5. Lastly, don't forget to add GREENERY!  It can turn any place into a homey living area.  You can also check out my top 10 design tips for home decor for more inspiration.

Need a really fun LARGE art piece for not a lot of money?  

See my DIY canvas map post 






Have fun with that room, experiment!  What's the worst that can happen, it's just your basement!  ha!


Linking up to YHL - using their tip #31, use something unexpected as your decor theme.


Also, linking up to Thrifty Decor Chicks BASEMENT PARTY!  You will get even more ideas for your basement by gleaming from the WEALTH of information the WWW has for you.  Have fun and don't forget to make your family dinner.  ;-)


 

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