Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Tech savvy?

I am not exactly what you would call "tech savvy", however, this evening I felt pretty awesome! I couldn't, for the life of me, figure out why my facebook page (personal & business) didn't have a URL link that worked. Can you say frustrating!!

I did a little investigation work and figured it out :) That's right, I did it all by myself!! Woohoo!!

So, if you haven't already, head on over to facebook and "like" my business page. All the cool kids are doing it :)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Chalkboard anyone?

A few months ago, I ran across a really cute vanity set on Craigslist for my daughter. We brought it home and then realized it was going to be too large for her space. I contacted a lady, I had originally found through Craigslist and then starting following on Facebook, that is a true junker at heart. She too refinishes furniture and sells little what-not's and everything in between. She was interested in the vanity, so we finally got the chance to meet in person! She made the vanity set look amazing and I think she had it sold before she got it home :)

Long story short, she and I have been in contact ever since. She recently moved and had a dynamite sale! I got to shop a bit early and snagged some great finds! One of the pieces I bought was this:

I am a sucker for frames I tell ya!! I didn't know what exactly I was going to do with this, but I knew I loved it enough to bring it home.

Then one evening it just hit me.... Chalkboard!!!!! I thought it would make a great addition to my -------- {Oops.. almost let the cat out of the bag}. Well, I thought it would just be great!!

I dusted it off and took it apart. I rolled chalkboard paint onto the actual print and let it dry. I normally wouldn't have done this, however it was not a paper type print and the paint didn't lift the paper.

Then I primed it, using Kilz spray primer:

And painted it:
{I normally use Krylon paint, but I was at Lowe's and thought I would give the Valspar "new and improved" nozzle a try. Plus the hubs picked out this awesome color!}

The color is called "New Avocado" in a satin sheen.

Here are the after pics.... primed, painted, glazed & transformed!!

** If you would like to see some really great 'junk' and maybe even purchase a few new pieces, follow my 'new' friend Gypsy Green on Facebook!! Show some love and tell her "Carla @ A Little Love Affair" sent you :)

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Fun new finds!

While I can't yet disclose the 'Big News', I can show off a few pieces I have stumbled upon this past week!!

This dresser/buffet/whatever-you-want-it-to-be piece was sitting outside looking oh so lonely. I just happen to drive by and it caught my eye. I just had to go back and inquire!! To my surprise, she was up for the taking!!! I quickly paid for her {before the owner changed their mind} and brought her home :)

{before pic}

I just L.O.V.E. the french style!! I can NOT wait to refinish and reveal the results! (by the way, she is already SOLD!!! :)

Moving on to the next find of the week...

My awesome hubs and I were on our way to pick up a table, when his cousin sent a text to me with a pic of this:

{before pic}

She was at Goodwill and thought I might like it. Um, Helllllloooooo!!!! YES!!! We quickly met her there and snatched it right up!!! I know exactly what I want to do with her. She will be up for grabs in a week or so... stay tuned!!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Taking a leap of faith...

“When it comes to the future, there are three kinds of people: those who let it happen, those who make it happen, and those who wonder what happened.” - John M. Richardson, Jr.

I love this quote. It brings a lot of inspiration to me actually.

I have been going back and forth for the last year on the idea of either renting a booth space or opening my very own retail space and sharing my passion with the world (for a profit).

Let me start by saying that I'm very blessed to get to be a stay at home mom and wife. My hubs is a very hard worker and a wonderful provider! However, there are times that I get bored and wish I had my own thing going.. I need my identity back :) {and some extra money would be a bonus}

So.... I have decided to take the plunge and just do it!

I'm super excited, nervous and everything in between. I'm not sure how it will all work out, but I do know that I will never find out if I don't try :)

Drum Roll Please..............

Starting January 2012, 'A Little Love Affair', will be going retail :):):):)

So with all the new fun that's going to be happening around here, I thought it was only proper to have a new "logo" and order some business cards...


How cute are those! I mean, really, who doesn't like a little hot pink with a fancy-smancy chandelier!!

I will reveal location details soon, but until then, you can follow me on facebook and here on my blog. I will, of course, be talking about and posting pics of projects like crazy! After all, what's a retail space without merchandise?? 

Wish me luck :)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

With a chill in the air, Christmas is near.

We bought a new tree this year {for our new home} and I just love it! It's a 9' slim Norfolk pine. I thought it was only proper, with our move to "the country", to decorate a little more rustic this year. I had one thing in mind... Burlap!

I love anything and everything burlap!! It's really more of a sick obsession.. I may need therapy :)

Here are a few pics of our home shining bright for the holiday season...

 These are flowers from our wedding with a little silver glitter added and some ribbon from my bouquet :)

Merry Christmas from our house to yours...
linking: It's Overflowing, Thrifty Decor Chick

Pallet Project

If you're a crafter, a wanna be crafter or just a blog follower of crafts, I'm sure you have seen many pallet projects. I have pinned several on my Pinterest boards. Until now, I have yet to actually see one in person!!

My daughter {beautiful, SMART & talented} is in FCCLA in High School. She took part in a National Star Event Contest. The topic she choose was "Recycle & Redesign". The requirements were to take an everyday household or post consumer product and redesign it into something new. She also had to give a 10 minute speech in front of the judges panel. She choose to make a coffee table from recycled pallets!

She did 98% of the work by herself! There was a lot of lifting, pulling out nails, sanding, staining, drilling etc. involved, not to mention the preparation of her speech.

(these pictures were taken inside my garage and not on the correct setting, so please ignore the poor quality of the photos)

I think it turned out GREAT!!!

And I am PROUD to announce.... SHE WON 1ST PLACE IN HER DISTRICT!!!!!

Next to conquer will be Regionals in February :) I will keep you posted...

I'm Baaaaack!!!!

Woah!!!! Where have you been woman?! Well, long story short, our plans have not exactly gone as planned the past few months. I would need to write a ton of blog posts to get you caught up on all the deets, however, who really gives, right?! I will summarize the best I can...

The house we were building, our "dream" house, the one we devoted all our time, energy, money and every evening to for the past 9 months to, didn't happen!! There are many, many things I don't understand in this earthly world of ours, but this one really caught me off guard! God has a way of looking out for us, even though we sometimes question His timing, but He has never EVER steered us in the wrong direction.. Thanks Man!!

We were one week from closing, when the call came in... our final appraisal had came in short... $6,000 short!! Before I panicked, I looked over the appraisal report. The must have been a mistake on one of the comps. It was the model home that we copied ours after. We agreed to purchase our home for $1,000 less than the price of the model home, because it was on a larger lot. Per the report, it sold for $8,000 less than what we were told! There must have been some mistake in paperwork on the appraiser's end, right? Wrong! The mistake was on the builders end. When we confronted him about this and the fact that the appraisal came in short, he was not willing to work with us. It was either come up with the extra cash or walk away. Now let me just say that before all of this happened, we had the most pleasant building experience like ever! He answered calls/texts the same day, was always willing to make adjustments within hours and let us make add-ons where normally they weren't made. It was all going so smoothly.. or so we thought. I'm not saying he willing knew all along that he was over charging us on this home and was upset with us for not using him in house lending department from the start, but, well... um ya.

So, long story short, we got our earnest money back and walked away from the home we watched come together from the tree filled lot up to the finishing touches in the painted trim in the laundry room. No, I'm not bitter about it at all ;)

After a small panic attack, we called our realtor and got him on the ball!! Financing was not a problem on our end, so nothing had changed there. We just needed to find a house.. and in a hurry! We had already turned our lease in and our house was in boxes (remember, we were ONE week from moving!!).

We jumped in the car and went house hunting!! We ended up in a neighborhood we had looked at a year or so before hand. At the time, we didn't think it was affordable for us, but at this point, we thought anything is worth looking at!! We viewed two homes. The first one was beautiful, but just didn't WOW me. The second home just had it all!! From the minute we walked through the door, it just felt like home. It had everything we were building.. and MORE!! It had all the upgrades we were putting in our other house.. and MORE that we were either going to just wait on or do without because of budget. It was still a wooded lot (which is what we wanted). It still had granite in the kitchen (which is what I wanted {and have been waiting years for}). It had so many of the same features that we have always loved, it was scary! {example: the lighting fixtures on the front and back porch were the EXACT ones we custom ordered!}

At this point, we knew we would be putting in an offer on this home!! After a couple back and forth numbers, we signed a contract!! (all within 48 hours of THE dreaded phone call) We rented a very large storage unit for 30 days and moved our entire house into it and stayed with my husband parents for a couple of weeks. GOD BLESS THEM!!! I couldn't ask for better in-laws.. Really!!

Our lender was AMAZING and pushed the paperwork through lighting fast!! We closed within 3 weeks!! And the best part.... We locked our interest rate this time around into something even better than before (which was awesome) and even though we paid more for this home than the one we were building, our payments are LOWER!! High five to the big man upstairs!! TRUST is something I will always have from here on out :)

So, now that a few months of complete craziness has gone by, I will be blogging again!! Woohoo!!

When I look back on everything that has happened, there is no doubt in my mind, I know it was never in God's plan for us to ever live in that house. For whatever reason, it was His plan and His timing for us to experience the home building process (which was a blast, for the most part), the transition process and the adjusting process. Through all of this, we have never asked "Why us", but we have held our heads high and looked forward.

It was worth it.

Stayed tuned for a home tour....

Monday, December 12, 2011

Holy Lego! Wyatt's turning 7!!!

It's happening... my "baby" is turning 7!! He is lover of a lot of things and Lego's are near the top of his list, so naturally, I planned a Lego themed birthday party this year :)

His actual birthday is December 21st, so since it's so close to Christmas, he has never really had a great turnout. {poor kid only had 2 friends come last year} This year I was determined for him to have a good party!! So I decided to have it a week and a half early :) This plan = SUCCESS!!!

First I need to say how I'm a L.O.V.E.R. of Pinterest and I owe 100% credit to all of the amazing ideas and bloggers I found there!! You can follow my boards and see just how easy-peezy this party was to put together.

I won't go into super detail on how I made everything, you can get that from Pinterest. However, I will break it down for ya :)

I bought a pinnate flag from The Dollar Tree in primary colors and a ton of streamers and hung them on the drapes. (which I still need to blog about how and just exactly WHAT my drapes are made from!) I printed Lego men and cute them out and then used my tape runner to attach them to the flags.

I also draped the streamers in the kitchen above the party table, had balloons all over the floor and had the mailbox decorated so the house was party ready!

We played 3 games. I printed a list of the games so we could keep track of each players score. I gave prizes for 1st place and runner-up. 1st place prize consisted of a gumball machine filled with gumballs and a small Lego package. Runner-up prizes were just the small Lego packages alone.

Game #1: Lego Toss

This was a crowd favorite!! Super easy.. all you need is poster board in 4 colors. Cut into strips and taped together to make a ring. Each player gets 5 Lego's to "toss" and you add up their points. We had them stand behind a line so it wasn't too easy.

Game #2: Guess How Many Lego's Are In The Jar

There were some pretty funny guesses on this! Anywhere from 3 Lego's to over 1,000 Lego's :) The correct guess would have been 177 Lego's, but the 1st place winner guessed 170!! VERY close!!

Game #3: Pin The Face On The Minifigure

A small twist to the classic game "pin the tail on the donkey", this game was fun and so cute! Kudos's to my daughter for free handing the cutouts for the Lego figures body and arms! She is Excellent in art!! Thanks Abby!!
For this game, each child was blindfolded, spinned and headed in the right direction to place their minifig face on the body. I had precut head shapes and let each child make a face of their choice along with their name on the back. Then just used a little tape. Closest to correct placement wins!

Thanks again to Abby for saving the day and letting us use her scarf, since I forgot to pick up a blindfold!! The final result was a hoot!!
Congrats to Addison for coming in 1st place on this game!!

After games, we opened presents.. 

Lots and Lots of presents!!! Wyatt is so blessed to have such great friends!!

I saved the sugar for the end of the party (then sent them home to run off the extra energy they gained at the party) super awesome, I know!!

Here is a pic of the party table:

I think cupcakes are so much easier than cake for youngsters, not to mention I can make them and save on the cost of ordering a cute cake!!

For the cupcakes:

I started by buying a Lego brick silicone mold from Ebay. (I got it in a lot auction with a minifig mold which I made crayons for the goodie bags.) I bought the melt able colored chocolate tabs from Hobby Lobby and just melted them down into the mold and made the Lego yummies! I used the "FunFettie" cake mix and baked them in red, blue and yellow papers I also found at Hobby Lobby, which I used a 40% coupon on and scored them for less than $2!! A little white icing and a roll in some colored sprinkles.. top with a Lego brick chocolate and there you have it! So cute and YUM!

I served the premade ice cream cups, so we had to have spoons! I made the napkin rings from a Lego logo {say that 3 times fast!} I found on google. Added a strip of crepe paper and there ya have it!

For the drinks:

I am big on no sugar added "juice" so I always have a stocked pantry of REAL 100% juice Capri Sun. I found this great printable from Pinterest. It will take you to a wonderful blog!! They are actually for the juice boxes, but it worked just fine for the pouches too!! I then printed and cut out little Lego man heads and taped them onto the straws. You can find that printable here.

All of the kids, and even the adults, loved the party table!! I kept hearing "Did you know we can EAT these too!!" So much fun!

"Happy Birthday to YOU" was sang and everyone dug in to the goodies.... (by the way.. the "green Lego board" under the cake stand is actually popping shipping stuff painted green with spray paint! Another awesome tip from pinterest!!)

Goodie Bags:

These were so much fun to make! I bought them in a set from the wonderful HL (using a 40% coupon of course) and just used my circle cutter and scrapbook paper for the rounds. I attached them using 3-D dots so they stuck out a little. I didn't get a pic of the contents of the bags (I know, I know, SHAME on me!!) but they were filled with the following contents:

  • Printable Coloring Book
  • Lego Minifig Crayons made with the silicone mold I purchased on Ebay
  • Lego stickers
  • Silly straw
  • Lego brick candy from the candy store in the mall

All in all, it was a GREAT party!!

Happy Birthday Wyatt Ryan Maker!!!

We LOVE you so much!!!!!

*** I owe a HUGE thanks to my amazing hubby for all his help with the party!! He was game score keeper, picture taker, and clean up man for the day!! Thanks babe!!

linking to: Home Stories A2Z

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Proud to Announce...

Our new (to us) dining room table & chairs (and bar stools)!!!!! I'm not sure why, but I have been so afraid of the electric sander and staining bare wood!! Weird right?! Well, not anymore!!

I bought this lovely gem off Craigslist for only $75! It came with the table, a leaf, 4 matching chairs and 2 non-matching chairs.

It needed some love and a little cobweb removal. I loved the fact that the table top was round and the base was pedestal. I was also loving the little curves her feet had ;) I had BIG plans for this one!!

I stared by cleaning her and removing all the nasty away (and the gum that had been stuck underneath the table top.. Really??). Then I prepped my area and got started.

 Love my paint can's for propping things up like this!!


All primed and ready for paint!!!

I have been wanting some color for our new home, and what a better way to bring it in than in the kitchen!! So, after a loooooong thought process, I  went with this!! It's "Harbor Blue" by Rustoleum (spray paint in gloss of course).

I wanted to glaze it to tone done the BRIGHTness of the blue and so all the creases could soak it up and really POP out at ya!!

I LOVE glaze!! It's a super easy and fun way to transform anything (and everything!!).

Chair details after glazed and dry!! Look at that detail!!!!

I so wish I would have gotten a pic of the top during the sanding and staining process. I was so nervous about doing it (this was my first time to use an electric sander and stain!!) I totally forgot! However, let me start by saying I am no longer a scaredy cat and it was so so easy!! The dining room of this rental is just awful and so is the lighting, so these pics do no justice! (one day I will figure out how to use my camera the right way and all my pics will look fab!)

I love how everything turned out (shown here without the leaf. It is going to need some more work, but we probably will never use it anyhow, so I am waiting to do finish it this fall when it's not over 100*). The top is stained a dark walnut (hard to tell here :(

I also picked up a pair of bar stools from a friend that was moving out of state. We will need a set so I thought I could paint them to add even more color to the kitchen!

Once again, loving my old paint cans!!

I used Krylon's tented primer for these and I just love this rusty color! Wish they had a paint in this color!!

Krylon's Cherry Red Gloss is a very BRIGHT red, but when you add some glaze to it, it looks like this..

And once again, it is a little darker than in the picture. (darn flash!!) Oh, did I mention the bar stools swivel too!!! Yea!!

Now my kitchen will have some color, but it's starting to look like a red, white and blue theme, which I am not against, but not going for either, so I will be adding touches of other colors (yellow, a little orange and maybe something else) after we move!!

Stay tuned for a house tour....