Sunday, March 31, 2013


One of the neighborhoods in town has a pasture of cows that we’ve always been drawn too. Saturday afternoon we were driving through the neighborhood because we love looking at the new construction homes. Yes, we have our own across town but we still love to watch them go up. Free entertainment right?

Anywho, we probably spent a half hour just standing there watching and talking to the cows. It was a beautiful day. The blue skies, black and white cows, and bright green grass were picture perfect. I wish I’d had my big camera but I still got some fun shots.

The cows were just gorgeous. We wanted them all!

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One of them had a heart on its forehead.


Monday, March 25, 2013

“You’re Going to Paint Weird Stuff on All of Our Walls!”

How you doin’?

That’s right, I’m talking to you, you sexy stenciled wall!



Frames still aren’t filled…


You guys, I stenciled my first wall. It was adventurous, tedious, hard to convince the hubby, and laborious.



Our bedroom was in need of some pizzazz. There was nothing wrong with it, but nothing exciting about it either. This room was very low on my favorite room scale, and now it ranks at the top!

Going shopping for fun wall decorations was just not in the budget so I needed something free that preferably packed a big punch!

This is how things happen ‘round here…

Friday night was a fun night out at our first FSU Baseball game of the season. Our friends invited us to their Suite so we gladly joined them and enjoyed watching our Noles kick some GT booty!

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Good times with wonderful people!

I tell you that only because it was a normal night and I had zero thoughts of stenciling on the brain...

Then, Saturday morning we woke up, I’m lying in bed, the clouds are rolling in as well as thunder, and the weather predicts nastiness all weekend.

This is when the ‘ol wheel starts turning.

And all the sudden it goes PING! Must stencil wall. Must stencil wall immediately.

Starts googling stenciled walls. Starts googling free stencils. Starts thinking this is going to happen. Starts thinking of the best approach to convince David.

Me: Hey Bookie…umm…umm…you see that wall over there? Doesn’t it need something? To make it pretttty?

David: No, that wall is just fine as is. Look at how nice it is!

That wall is boring! And I can’t just go buy all new stuff so I was thiiiiinking…thatitwouldlookreallycoolifIstenciledit! (Said in the Bob-had-a-baby-it’s-a-boy-commercial, you know to save minutes on the phone)…it’d be 100% free because I have everything!!


(Shows him stenciled wall above from Jones Design Company)

NOOOO Tamara, that looks like wallpaper, I don’t like it! No, the answer is no, absolutely not, NO.

Wahhhhhh! Ppppllleaseeee let me! Why do you care?! Let me do it if it makes me happy!

You got your black striped wall! And I didn’t want that! You’re going to do weird stuff to every single wall in this house!

Pouty face.

Well, I’m doing it. I should just beg for forgiveness instead of ask for permission!

Tamara, if you paint that wall you’re in big trouble.

But it’s going to look so pretty when it’s done!!

No, this is my house too and I don’t like it.

Well while you think about changing your mind I’m going to cut my stencil!

1 hour later…I show the puppy dogs my stencil and tell them it’s going to look so pretty!

David: What is that?

Me: My stencil! Isn’t it neat?

I don’t know why you wasted your time making that cause you’re not touching that wall.

Me using my whiney voice: Daaaaavvviiiiiddddd pllllleeeaassseeeee………..

Defeated David: Fine, do what you want. Now stop bothering me! HaHa

SUCCESS. I won, but this one was the toughest I’ve had to work yet for hubby approval! Sheesh!

You’d think I’m asking to put white planked walls around the fireplace or something! It’s on my wishlist ;-)

So, long drawn out morning later, I’m in business!

I followed Emily’s tutorial. Her room rocks! She also has the template available for free download on her site.

I gathered my supplies, all already on hand. Paint wise I used not even half of a quart.

White paint, craft brush, pencil, stencil and don’t forget, you’ll need a large supply of patience! Mine almost ran out but I had some on reserve.

Sidenote: I keep calling this a stencil, but since I didn’t actually stencil a cutout, I don’t know if this is considered one? Regardless, I was tracing and using a template so that’s what I’m calling it. Sorry if that’s not the technical term.

To make the stencil/template/whatever it’s called, I printed out her template, cut it out with an xacto knife, then cut it out of foam board to make it sturdy. You can use cardboard too.

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After posting the following picture to Instagram/Facebook, I was committed. No turning back now!


Then, I got to tracing. I started at the top left corner and went down vertically. Repeat 800 million times.


Remi: “There she goes again..what’s she changing in my room now…”


My lens has a mark on it that I can’t seem to get off…

Emily has a great tutorial for the tracing/filling in part.

It was easy, although oh-so-tedious. I tried to level the stencil the first couple times and then that got annoying so I eye balled the rest of it.

I fudged a lot of places. In fact it looked awful in several spots where things didn’t line up nicely. However, when I went back with paint I was able to make things right. It’s not perfect by any means, but luckily from far away it looks great.

The pencil part took me the whole day, and I got started painting around 7 or so Saturday evening. I think. I’d lost track at that point.


I started painting behind where the bed would be hiding it so I could perfect my technique. I started with a paintbrush that was a little too wispy. I did all behind the bed with it and stopped painting around 1 am to hit the sack.

The next morning I told David that my free project was going to turn into a $3 project because I needed to purchase a round tipped paint brush. I went to Wal Mart and Target and found the perfect one in the kid’s art supply section at Target.

I painted and painted and painted. And went to bed with about a 5x3 foot area left. I wanted to finish that little area so bad but I was spent. At that point I’d spent the last several hours on the ladder and my legs were going numb and my arm hurt. Beauty (on the wall) is pain right? I definitely didn’t want to fall off the ladder unconscious. The ladder would totally have scuffed up my beautiful wall on it’s way down!


My helpers and marathon RH episodes on Bravo helped pass the time.


Hims so cute!



I finally finished tonight. I am IN LOVE.

I don’t plan on stenciling anything again. At least not at that scale. I have no idea how anyone could do this to a whole room and keep their sanity. Smile

Here’s one more looksy.



What do you think? Feeling adventurous to do painted wallpaper on something of your own?

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Ikea Did it Again

We recently were in Tampa for our good friends David and Chloe’s wedding. It was beautiful! While we were there, we of course had to make an Ikea stop since the only “close” ones are 4 hours South and 5 hours North of us.

First a few wedding pictures then I’ll share the goods!


The Johnstons!

Chloe looked seriously stunning!


Me, Katie, Rossi and Laura…groomsman wives
(& daughter)!


My handsome groomsman!

Okay, told you just a few. I brought my camera but never took it out…bad!

We had a wonderful time, I love weddings!!


Okay, back home…

Meet Lappie. Short for Lappljung Ruta, her swedish name.


I lurve her.

She’s exactly what our dining room needed.


Here she blows on Ikea’s website.

And here’s some not-so-prettily dressed up pieces we also got. I just took the pictures with my phone at 11:30 on a “school” night.

No matter how old I get, and how long I’ve been out of school, weekdays will always be “school nights” to me!


Ribba frames to make a gallery wall in our room! Needs to keep growing but I like it for now. One day I want to make a long cushy bench for the wall too.

Don’t mind the empty frames…

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Expedit in white. Can’t wait to get some baskets in that baby! And some decoration in that room…although I’ve been gently reminded that “it’s a man cave, it don’t need no decorations!”

Pff, not under my roof honey! Don’t worry, I’ll keep in manly-ish.


Vittsjo shelf unit which may not stay black (and empty) forever…


And this adorable little blue glass vase, the Olik that I should have gotten ten more of.

Why oh why is there not an Ikea nearby?!

Oh wait, I know, because I’d be there every day of my life!



Thursday, March 21, 2013

Moose is One!

We celebrate our dog’s birthdays ‘round these parts. Do you?


Happy 1st birthday sweet girl!

My friend Amanda who we got Moose from, threw a puppy party in honor of the poochies’ 1st birthday!

I couldn’t think of anything I’d love more for Moose than to get to see her Momma and brothers and sisters again! She hadn’t seen any of them since she was 8 weeks old.

Home girl threw up in my car on the way to the party. She’s never done that. Here’s how that went down.

Me, Kim and Moose. 20 minutes into the 45 minute drive:

Me: “It smells like potatoes! Do you smell potatoes?!”

Kim: “Yes, I do!”

Thinks nothing of it…

Moose: “Buuuuurp!”

We turn to the backseat and there’s at least 5 pounds of upchucked food on the backseat. Niiiice.

Then when we left she proceeded to throw up twice in the backseat again before we even made it out of the neighborhood.

She also had massive amounts of diarrhea (but not in the car thankfully). Poor girl. Lesson learned, no more raw hides ever again for our babies. So to start off she wasn’t feeling well going into the party.



When we got there my little Nervous Nancy was scared. She’s not used to being anywhere new and “scary” without her big brother Rem.


Auntie Kimbo was in town this past weekend so she got to go with me! Kimbo thank you for your help with Moosey!

You see Moose is very used to having boundaries, i.e. fenced in yards. Well, these guys had free reign at Amanda’s because her yard is only partially fenced. Moose started off leash-less but decided she wanted to stray from the group and head to the woods (tummy upset, remember?). It took Kim and I both to get her rounded up and from then on she was on the leash. I’m just too paranoid to let her roam and hope she comes back. The other dogs stuck around but she wasn’t too interested. She is the sweetest girl ever but Mommy and Daddy didn’t teach her very good manners about coming when she’s called so she kind of does what she wants.


There were 7 puppies total in the litter (all black), and 4 were able to attend the party. Also in attendance were Amanda’s other two dogs (besides Chase, the puppy she kept), Yoo Hoo (Moose’s mama) and Bailey (Moose’s sister from another mister). There was also another black lab there who came to play but wasn’t part of the litter.


Borrowed from Amanda’s Facebook; photo by Zaina Kinsey (Kinsey Photography) a year ago! Soo cute!


Mama Yoo Hoo is the chocolate one.

I loved watching them all together!


Bella (who looks identical to Moose) and Cody, littermates.


Bailey keeping cool and an eye on those crazy one year olds.



Amanda was so sweet to put this together! There’s me and Goosey on the wall.


May 2012, cue the collective “Awwww”! Look at hers cute wittle face!

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Sniff sniff, are you my mother?”

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Chase & Bailey


Proud and happy Mama Yoo Hoo!


Party animal, over and out!

Thanks again for having us Amanda!

Oh, and since Moose has second child syndrome and all, she doesn’t get that many spotlight posts like Rem did. So in honor of her birthday, here’s a few dozen of my favorite pictures of our sweet girl over the past year. Couldn’t imagine life without our dogs, they truly are family.




PicMonkey Collage


You can read about Remi’s first birthday here!


August, 2010. Love that boy!


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