Taming chaos

You might recall my pledge to makeover my husband’s desk. You know, the one I’ve been relegated to because, as my oldest says, “we like playing on your clean desk” – mm-hmm. So in my quest for a new desk, I started with an area that drove me batty every time I looked at it — the charging “center”.

Believe me, I was very kind in taking a grainy, far away picture, because you did NOT want to see this desk up close. Or the tangled mess that was the charging strip and the bazillion cords plugged into it. It’s the area to the left of the monitor where the Kindle and assorted black cords and items are sitting.

I chose a boot box we had laying around because it would be large enough for the bulky charging strip. I covered it in some delicious peacock paper from my home away from home, Paper Source, and then made two holes in it. The one in the back was large enough for the charging strip:

and the rectangular one in front was for the charging cords to plug into our various items.

I am so happy with the result. It’s not a space saver but a visual chaos tamer, and a much welcome one. The peacock paper brings together the colors I plan on using in this area, including shimmery gold:

First step taken — well, actually, the first step was cleaning the behemoth of a desk, so second step taken, yay me! I like how $4.95 (plus tax) for the paper was all I invested in this little change, and I already had the paper from a previous excursion to the store. I hope to make more progress this week and share the new desk area with y’all. Wish me luck!

* Today is my darling daddy’s birthday. I miss you so much, dad, I hope you are enjoying some good Peruvian coffee and freshly baked bread, and having a good conversation with friends, or maybe watching some Peruvian futbol. Love you lots.

Know when to hold ’em – and a blog hop!!!

and know when to fold ’em. And, people, I am so folding!

See this?

This is my office. Or rather, it will soon be known as The Area Formerly Known As My Office. TAFKAMO.

I love it, don’t get me wrong. I chose the sleek IKEA desk with red legs, I made those lovely bright file holders on top of the shelf. I made that little corner my own.

And for some reason, EVERYONE in the house wants to use MY computer. My boys (that’s my youngest there) love to play Minecraft on my computer. My boys’ friends come over and play Minecraft on MY computer. My husband uses my computer. Never mind he has his own desk and computer:

Although it’s now become The Electronic Dumping Ground. TEDG. I can’t say it.

My oldest has his own computer, my dad’s old laptop. Does he use it? No. Mama’s computer is so much better. It’s like food, they don’t ever want what’s on their plate but I sit down to eat and within 2 minutes one or two little monkeys will be sniffing around, asking for a bite.

So you know what? I’m Claudia, and I’m taking over πŸ˜€ my husband’s desk. I’m going to work with what is there. Which means, first, I will be taking everything off the surfaces, giving it a good cleaning, and then sorting through everything before I decide what gets put back, and where. I have plans for this little corner. My first project for 2013, I’m so psyched!!!

For now, though, I am co-hosting a blog hop with one of my favorite bloggy friends!

Please share the hop with your readers and let Katherine know if you would like to co-host with her.
Remember to leave her a comment if you are a new follower so she can follow you back:-)
Thursday favorite things is where you can link your favorite post or write a post about your favorite things You gain visibility for your blog and make bloggy friends too!
Here are the rules, yes there are rules. But just a few:

*** Follow Katherine’s Corner preferably through Email it’s on her sidebar (or facebook, google plus or twitter) And My Blog, Facebook, or Twitter too.
*** Visit as many blogs in the list as you can.
*** Share the button on your post.
*** No adult content blogs

Grab the hop button code from Katherine’s button page. It’s always nice to have the hop button on your post. It IS NOT mandatory; but a Link back to Katherine’s Corner is always appreciated.

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File it with flowers

I’m starting to get in the Back to School mindset, not to mention the Fall and Holidays (yay!) mindset, so I thought I would make sure all those random ideas I come across (hello Pinterest!) would have somewhere to go other than my brain. Because the filing system there sucks, I tell ya.

My boys and I made a quick trip to IKEA on Wednesday and we grabbed a set of 5 FLYT magazine holders. And meatballs. And cinnamon rolls. And then I nearly cried because they didn’t have my favorite sparkly pear drink, but then my friend J said we’d have some Wyder’s Pear Cider next time we hang out and that cheered me up.

It took me the same time to try and put one together as it took my husband to put the other four together. Did you notice I said “try”? Yeah, I ended up giving that one back to him and he put it together for me.

Then he held the gift wrap while I took a photo because I had asked my oldest and he kept shaking it and after five pics, I relieved him of his wrap-holder duties and called my husband. Apparently we cannot manage the simplest tasks around here ;D

I mod-podged the wrap onto the files then added some labels with cardstock I had on hand. The white scalloped tag is not glued on in case I want to change it (me, change stuff around?) so I used spiral clips that we had leftover from making our wedding invitations NINE YEARS AGO. Mm-hmm.

I love how cheerful they are and how I can just rip a page out of a magazine and tuck it into the appropriate file so I can go through it later, instead of having loose papers all over the place. The binder thing does not work for me, other than for recipes, so I needed something I would actually use.

The other stuff on the shelf also makes me happy:

The candlestick that I got on clearance at World Market. The little book my husband made me for my first mother’s day. The yummy candle my dear friend K got me. Okay, so, weird OCD here, I like the lid on that candle. It has this vacuum-seal thing going on and I just love opening and closing it. No, really, I do feed my children and clean my house and water the acres (feet) of garden I have, I don’t just sit around opening and closing a candle while listening to Pandora and browsing Pinterest.

Eiffel Tower from World Market. It’s a doorstop but you know how many bruises I would have on my ankles if I used that heavy thing as a doorstop? Two adorable chess-piece candlesticks in one of my favorite colors, found in Target’s dollar section. These were $2.50 each, but hello, total score, right?

I am loving my happy little files and I hope you like them, too – have a great weekend!!

Office detail

Back when I won the contest at Leen the Graphics Queen‘s, I spent so much time figuring out what to get with my prize credit.

One of the items I chose was this set of decals – I used three of them on the wall to the right of my desk:

I placed them on cardstock and then slipped them into frames I had.

I love where they are, and the pop of graphic art they add to my office area.

There are two more images in the set, and I have plans for those, as well as the other items I got from my contest win. I’ll keep you updated!

The Simple Things

One of my favorite blogs is Simple as That – not only is Rebecca a super talented photographer and crafter, but her posts are usually full of peace and grace, even when moving from a tropical island to Canada in the winter!

Rebecca has this great series called The Simple Things – where you share something, be it a moment, a conversation, an image, anything that was simple in the large scheme of things but something that made you happy. Today I am joining The Simple Things:

Something simple that is making me happy this morning is my empty inbox!!!

First, because I bought it for $1 at the Target dollar bin area. In fact, I got 4, all they had left. I figure for $1 each, it was a super deal, and it is laminated so I can use one in my kitchen. They are not super sturdy, but I wouldn’t be carrying it full or drinks or anything, it is just a sweet little tray in a color I am loving, a cheerful pattern, and it works just fine where it is.

Second, I am thrilled to have emptied it this morning, I went through the mini-hill sitting inside and took care of everything. I tell you, that, and cleaning out my purse as such refreshers!

There you have it, my simple thing for this Sunday – I hope yours is a wonderful one and Yeah Niners!!! You should have heard my house in the last 90 seconds of that game. My oldest started cheering with me, at one point he said “the other team sucks!!! um, what’s their name?” He was just psyched to be cheering with mom he didn’t care who he was cheering against πŸ˜€

Stereo stand to craft tower

This old stereo stand had been languishing in the kids’ playroom — and my office — for several months:

I thought it had great potential for craft storage, and decided to give it a new look.

First came a coat of chocolate brown paint for the outside, a coat of Antique Gold for the shelves, and a Command hook for the side:

For the inside I chose my favorite peacock paper from Paper Source:

I gathered craft stuff that was scattered all over the house, and some random containers were given a new life. I didn’t want things matchy-matchy, and neither did I want to spend any money. Everything was done with items I already had.

Here you can see some of my paper crafting and sewing supplies:

Paper punches, threads and ribbons, and my blank card packs. I have so many, I really need to start using them!

On top, my pencils and markers, decorative scissors, various adhesives, and random bits and bobs, along with a tray I painted a while ago with my newest craft book:

Yes, it is The Martha’s Holiday Crafts book, and it is awesome. Some of the crafts are a little advanced to do with my boys, but I’m working on adapting a few.

So here it is, my sweet little craft station. I love that I transformed it without spending a cent and that it is now a useful piece instead of just storing old VHS movies and gathering dust.

I hope you enjoyed this makeover!

Featured At Serenity Now

It's OverflowingThursday Favorite ThingsWeekend Bloggy Reading The Shabby NestFurniture Feature FridaysPositively Splendid

My glam office shelf

I was at Michaels the other day and saw a few ornaments I had to have, in my favorite colors of 2011 – turquoise and olive green. I added some items I had at home to complete the look.

From left to right: IKEA vase with Christmas greenery from Michaels clearance last year, Noel ornament and scroll ornament from current Michaels selection. I don’t remember where I got the snowman!!!
Target frame from 2009. Eiffel tower ornament from Pier One.
Cupcake pedestal, gift from my dear friend K, with garland we’ve had for years and glittery white candle. Little Christmas tree my husband put on my desk, it changes colors ;D Green lantern from IKEA.
Candlestick from Goodwill, spray-painted ORB with plan taper and the most fabulous peacock ornament, again, from Michaels. Their ornaments are 50% off so each of the three ornaments I got were $2.50 – $3.00 – score! LOVE print from Made by Girl.

So there you have my sparkly glam shelf – full of items that mean a lot to me (mini tree from my hubby, pic of my boys, gift from a dear friend) and items that make me smile, with the most beautiful sentiment of all, LOVE, as the background. Hope you enjoyed the peek into a corner of my world. Have a great weekend!

Organization: A year’s worth of homework

With two boys in school now, there are lots of homework and art project pages filling up the bin I set up in the office. Now that the new school year has started, it was time to decide what to do with last year’s stash. Once I saw this, my decision was made:

One evening a couple of weeks ago, I sat down and photographed everything I wanted kept for posterity. I did save a couple of projects from each of my boys, and the memory books their teachers had made of the whole school year. I know, I’m a sucker, and we’ll see how those fare in a few years, but for now I am keeping them.

I got a coupon for a free poster print at Walmart, and I found super cheapo poster frames for $6 each, so my project ended up costing around $12 total.

We are redoing this particular corner of the playroom/office, since my husband likes my computer better (better graphics card, yeah!) and now never sits at his desk, so this corner is going to be the media/recharging station/printer/etc. area, but for right now I really like my boys’ work up there.

My favorite paper goods store

Every couple of months I try to head up to Paper Source – I am lucky enough to have one 20 minutes away, and I just love their array of delicious papers for all sorts of paper crafts.

I’ve used their peacock paper on the back of my office tower, used it as artwork in my bathroom, and made tons of scrapbook pages and cards with it.

I recently got this notebook for my purse. We keep our calendar online but when we’re out and about and need to schedule something, this will certainly come in handy.

I love everything lavender and these will be great to freshen up with during the hot days of late summer.

I call my youngest my little monkey, and he needs a new backpack for kindergarten πŸ˜€

A new water bottle for my oldest to take to school?

I’ll keep you updated on what I end up getting!

My new little office

Ever since my youngest was born and his room went from office to nursery, my husband and I have had our office space in the playroom.

It gets messy. Dinosaurs go everywhere, and seem to have a fondness for being on my desk and under my chair, so that more than once I have nearly toppled backwards because one of the wheels got caught on an ankylosaurus. Furthermore, my desk was so massive that I couldn’t reach all the way to the back of the desk and things that got put there were, inevitably, forgotten.

Knowing well that “the bigger the purse, the more you stuff in it”, I decided to get a smaller desk. I ended up with an IKEA desk, and I LOVE it. It is small but with all the space i need, and it is a lot more manageable for my needs.

Since I had some extra space, I appropriated a white shelf tower from my youngest’s room. No more diapers and wipes for him, so it became mine, all mine!!! But I decided to pretty it up with some peacock paper I saw at my favorite paper store, Paper Source.As much as I would like my office to look like something out of Martha Stewart or Real Simple or something, it is simply not my style.

I love color. The more the better. Up on the shelf above my desk I have turquoise, green, hot pink, red, brown, etc. There is a mini album my husband made for me on my second Mother’s Day, it is from my oldest, telling me all the ways I have been a good mommy to him. I love it and read it all the time. My darling dad watches over me every day, I made a collage of pics of him and his sweet smiling face keeps me company.

I recently made a family binder with some tips from Simplify 101, and that rests on the right, underneath the paper station with current mail I need to address, etc. I also have a weakness for cute notebooks, so there are about 2 (or 7) back there.

On the tower itself, lovely IKEA baskets corral items, below is my spray paint shelf and finally a couple of paper boxes and a magazine file. The item on top is the egg crate from Anthropologie, it holds some of my everyday jewelry.

So that is my new office area, messy and colorful, like my life. I love it, aside from the fricking ankylosaurus that still plague me ;D

Weekend Bloggy Reading