7 Day Blog Challenge! Day 7: Embellish

Yes, I am 1 day late with this post, but it has been a slightly crazy weekend so please forgive me.  We have made it to the end of the 7 day challenge!  Today’s suggestion is one that I found via one of my previously-spotlighted blogs, One Pretty Thing, and is a really great jumping off point for all you crafty types.  Or even just those who want to be crafty, but need some serious direction and inspiration to start a project.  Submitted for your approval: Embellish.


This blog is run by Kirsten, who writes about crafts, recipes, and most popularly, printables!  These are graphic works of art that she makes and posts on her blog, then you can just print them with a good quality color printer and use them in your decorating and craft projects.  She makes beautiful and FUN drink/cupcake flags, banners, labels, etc, many of which she shares with her readers completely for free!  Just print them and use them!

One of my favorite posts that I came across was this one, where she gives a recipe for blueberry blackberry lime jam, and then provides printable jar labels.  Cute!

This makes me think of my mother-in-law, who lives in rural Tennessee and frequently makes homemade blackberry jam.  Hmmmm…I may have to show her this site.

Anyways, I hope everyone enjoyed the 7 Day Blog Challenge.  Hopefully a few of you have new blogs to follow now.  I know I certainly do!

7 Day Blog Challenge! Day 6: Dear Photograph

Woo hoo!  Almost all the way through my 7 Day Blog Challenge!  Today’s blog is a fun little timewaster.

Dear Photograph is a newish blog on Tumblr.  Premise is fairly self-explanatory if you just click the link and check it out.  Take an old picture, hold it up so that it matches the exact context of the same location in present day, and take a picture.  The result is super cool.  Check these out!

Fun stuff, huh?  Tadd and I keep trying to think of pictures we can do this with.  I will be at my parents’ house on Sunday for Father’s Day, where I lived from age 9 until I was an adult…Might try my hand at making a few submissions of my own.

Anyways, SOOOOOOOOOOOO glad it’s finally the weekend!  This has been the work week from hell and I almost thought it would never end.  We are taking it easy tonight, so if I don’t fall asleep early (which might be likely…*yawn*), I might make a post to show you some of my favorite rooms and spots in our house.  Stay tuned!

7 Day Blog Challenge! Day 5: One Pretty Thing

I was lucky enough to actually have the time today to stumble upon a really neat blog during my lunch break at work.  This is a very different blog, because it’s really a constant collaboration of other blogs and websites all across the internet.  I feel like it’s a perfect fit for the spirit of this challenge, because just looking at all the neat stuff posted on this blog could single-handedly introduce you to many, many other new blogs and sites!

The blog I am spotlighting today is called One Pretty Thing, and it is run by Rachel.

It is a daily collection of various crafts, recipes, and other fun, creative ideas from various websites and blogs.  Each weekday, there are several posts with various (themed and non-themed) collections.  On the weekends, readers’ DIY projects are featured.  Scrolling through the past couple of days, you can find food posts, jewelry making posts, 4th of July posts, etc.  Each post contains photos and links to at least a dozen different project ideas.  It’s a great place to go for inspiration!  Also found some great potential fodder for my Pinterest pinboards!

7 Day Blog Challenge! Day 4: About Foursquare

Ok, so I admit that I am cheating a little bit today.  I had a very rough day at work, then had to pick Keith up from today’s job hunt location, then came home, made dinner (and brownies), and then my current favorite show was on (So You Think You Can Dance…Anyone else watching?), and now we are watching the Stanley Cup Finals and rooting for the Bruins!  I am very very tired and have very little time to be researching new blogs today.

But, I will feature a blog that I already follow and enjoy.  About Foursquare!

Yes, I am a bit of a Foursquare junkie.  I have been a member for about a year and a half now.  I am proud owner of 35 badges and love getting more.  Might be lame to some, but there is something about collecting them that is so satisfying.  It’s like unlocking a special achievement in a video game.  I am also big on coupons and love the special deals I can get on Foursquare.  My favorite deal right now is that everytime you check into a Smokey Bones restaurant, you get a free order of their kettle chip appetizer.  Yum!  And you can’t beat free.  So it appeals to me on multiple levels.

Just as an aside, I think Foursquare gets a bit of a bad rap from people who really don’t know what it is.  Some think it is dangerous because they think you are constantly broadcasting your location to strangers.  The location info is only available to those who YOU choose to show via your friends list.  I am always aware of everyone I friend on Foursquare, and do not accept friend requests from those I do not know in real life.  Of course you should exercise reasonable caution no matter where you are, but in about 18 months of use, I have never felt unsafe using this app.

I think I owe the fact that I have so many badges to About Foursquare.  This blog is always up on whatever is new in the world of Foursquare, including letting you know when new badges pop up along with hints on how to obtain them.  About Foursquare is NOT officially affiliated with Foursquare, but it’s the next best thing.  Whenever Foursquare develops a new partnership or a new type of deal is released, this is the first place I go to get the details.

So if you do like Foursquare, give About Foursquare a try to enhance your experience.

Sorry this was a half-hearted attempt at my challenge, but it really was all I could do after this crazy day.  Hopefully tomorrow is a bit more peaceful and I can spend more time relaxing and surfing all the excellent blogs out there!

Oh, and GO BRUINS!!!

7 Day Blog Challenge! Day 3: A Hasty Life

I have made it to day 3 of the 7 Day Blog Challenge!  Today I have another personal blog for you.  I started clicking blog to blog in the hopes of finding something new and interesting to read.  In doing so, I stumbled across A Hasty Life. a blog about a lovely lady named Ashley in Missouri.

A Hasty Life

More specifically, I stumbled across this post about a friend of Ashley’s who lost everything in the recent devastating Joplin, MO tornado, which really struck a chord with me.  We get a lot of crazy storms here in Orlando.  As a matter of fact, a few months after we moved into this house, we had a really scary storm where there were break-in news casts reporting on a tornado spotted in VERY close proximity.  Then we briefly lost power.  We could hear the wind SCREAMING outside.  I had a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach and started seeing visions of the house being ripped up around us.  In my fear I saw visions of almost exactly what Ashley’s friend went through as recounted in the blog post.  We ended up weathering that storm just fine, but it’s a scary reminder that nature shouldn’t be messed with, and to not take the little things in life for granted.  Amazing but heartbreaking stuff.  I’m so glad to hear that at the end of the story the friend and her husband were not seriously injured, despite their great loss.

Another interesting item I found on Ashley’s blog is the Purple Dress Project.

The Purple Dress Project

This is a project Ashley founded to raise awareness about a disease she and many others suffer from, Crohn’s Disease.  In the month of April, she wore the same purple dress everyday to prove that Crohn’s Disease is nothing to be ashamed of.  According to the donation site for the project, to date she has raised $3,225.70 to help fund research to eradicate the disease, of which there is currently no cure.  I just thought this was such a creative and interesting way to bring attention to such a great cause.

If you wish to donate to The Purple Dress Project, click the button below:

I encourage you all to check out A Hasty Life!  Yet another great blog found thanks to the 7 Day Blog Challenge!

7 Day Blog Challenge! Day 2: 320 Sycamore

Ok!  It’s day 2 of my 7 Day Blog Challenge!

And today I would like to highlight a great new blog I discovered last night.  It’s no secret that I love home decor blogs.  Especially those that show simple, no fuss ways to decorate for less.  Yesterday I introduced IKEA Hackers, which showed interesting ways to modify Ikea home decor and furniture items.  Pretty neat stuff, but sort of a specific type content.  Today’s blog is someone’s personal blog that shows how one woman named Melissa decorates and runs her beautiful home as a stay-at-home mom of 5; 320 Sycamore.

320 Sycamore is a wonderful place to find not only great decor ideas, but also crafts, recipes, inspirational quotes, funny anecdotes, and much more.  What I like most about these types of blogs isn’t only the great tips and inspirations pics of beautiful homes, but also that you get to know the people behind them.  They are real and have a real heart.  This is certainly a great example of that type of blog.

I think some of my favorite posts at 320 Sycamore are the holiday decorating ones.  Check out these great inspirational pics from her lovely home (Click the picture to be taken to the corresponding blog post):

christmas tour of homes part 1

christmas tour of homes part 1



valentine vignette

valentine vignette

Oh my goodness…I love holidays!  So this stuff really speaks to me.  Love it all!  Really inspires me to put together a summer/patriotic vignette for my entry table.

Recently she has posted about making her own pendant lamp for over her kitchen sink.  She made this with canning lids and some simple electrical components!  Check it out!  And how awesome is the corner sink with the beautiful windows?

diy schoolhouse light pendant

diy schoolhouse light pendant

I really find these types of personal, everyday-people decor blogs incredibly inspiring.  Makes me look around my own home and try to find ways to beautify and put my personal stamp on things.  If any of this interests you like it does me, please give 320 Sycamore a try!

7 Day Blog Challenge! Day 1: IKEA Hackers

Well, we didn’t get as far as we had hoped on the powder room project, but the walls are pretty much done.  I had hoped to have the cabinets started, but not this weekend.  We might be able to finish next weekend, but I’m not totally sure because we have much more planned than we did this weekend.  So worst case, it will take us a couple of weeks, which is fine because I still have a few items I need to decide on.

Anyways, I randomly happened upon this post from a social media blog by a guy named Danny Brown.  Basically, he devised something called the 7 Day Blog Challenge.  The idea is to expand your own horizons while simultaneously expanding the horizons of others, both readers and other bloggers, by seeking out interesting new blogs, and sharing them with your various social networks, and in your own blog.  So I thought I would do my own little version of this over the next week…

Basically, each day over the next seven days, I am going to highlight a blog that I have found and enjoy.  At the end of the week, hopefully my readers will have several interesting new blogs to check out…and maybe some of the blogs that I highlight will have some new loyal followers.  I encourage all of my other bloggy friends to do the same (feel free to use the graphic above too).

First up, is a blog that Tadd actually brought to my attention.  IKEA Hackers!

IKEA HackersThis is a blog where they take common objects, furniture, decor items, etc purchased at IKEA and modify and customize them.  You can find some very clever project ideas here, both the simple, like this pendant lamp made out of a cheese grater

…and the more complex, like this kitchen island that sinks into the floor when not in use (how cool is that!?)…

I wouldn’t consider myself excessively handy, but I do like creative ways to decorate for less, so I find this blog fascinating.  I would love to try a few of the projects myself very soon.  For example, check out this decoupaged $20 LACK coffee table.  So pretty, no?

So if you have access to an IKEA store and like to creatively furnish your home inexpensively, give the IKEA Hackers blog a try!

There you have it…Day 1 of the challenge complete.  Hope some of you other bloggers join me in taking up the challenge!