Grocery Store Floral Arrangement

I had a holiday dinner party a couple weeks ago, and grabbed some roses from my nearest Trader Joes, as well as some extra filler flowers from my local grocery store to put together my own centerpiece arrangement. I’ve never tried this before, so for my first attempt I was really pleased with the results!

Flowers

The colors in this arrangement are perfect for Valentine’s day, too – so if you’re already in planning mode for a special dinner date, this would be a great addition to your table!

Thanks to Pinterest, I’ve learned a couple great tricks that helped turn my grocery store stems into a beautiful arrangement.

Flowers1

I used a simple, short & square glass vase for this one – but next time I will definitely be branching out with my vessel choices. The first step is to tape off (simple scotch or masking tape will do) your vase into partitions. You can tape it into either four or six sections – I went with four.

Flowers2

Start with your hanging greens/filler stems, and balance out each of your four quadrants. I used a mix of greens – like ferns, some form of evergreen, and some other green stuff that I don’t know the name of. I also used some gold-painted leaves for some added glam.

Flowers3

Next, I added the white mums, again filling each quadrant so they were equally balanced. The roses went in last – plus a few glittery decorative pieces that were in the filler bunch from the grocery store.

Flowers5

I was pretty proud of my first attempt at arranging flowers like a grown-up, considering my typical practice is to do a quick diagonal cut on the stems and plop them in a vase. Flowers make me smile, no matter how you plop-em, BUT I totally love this!

Flowers6

Where do you buy your flowers? Are you lucky enough to have a market or local florist where you can pick up pretty blooms – or are you a grocery store flower girl like me?

Advertisements

Resolutions and The Happy Jar

Here we are, four days into 2014! As I mentioned in my last post, a wrap of of projects & posts in 2013, last year was full of ups and downs for me. I am feeling very revitalized and positive here at the start of a new year, and I have come up with some resolutions that are do-able and important to me (so I rubber stamped them into my journal, because that’s obviously the cutest way to document your resolutions!)

photo

My plan to ‘simplify’ applies to multiple facets of my life. I’d like to simplify my online life – organizing my email, media and blog files, and to simplify & steam line my goals for the home by following the January Cure at Apartment Therapy. This means focusing on reducing clutter, reevaluating storage solutions, addressing repair issues and generally trying to make choices that make our home upkeep, decorating and cleaning a simpler process. For a small home, we certainly accumulate massive amounts of things. I’ve been doing a lot of cleaning and organizing already, and am anxious to donate several bags of clothes, shoes, and purses – along with some other home items – to our local goodwill.

Which brings me to resolution #2 – to buy less, but create more. I’ve been expanding my skill sets and learning to tackle bigger projects that I may have balked at years ago. Building a headboard for less than $30, as opposed to buying one for $100 or more, is something I am quite proud of. I hope to tackle larger projects down the road in an effort to not only save money, but to create more pieces in our home that I can take pride in.

Goal #3 is simple – I just want need to read more. I wonder if any of you bloggers out there, who also happen to have full time jobs unrelated to their blog, find themselves in the same boat as me. The small amount of free time that I have outside of working an average of 10 hour days and many weekend is quickly dedicated to my home and craft projects and blogging. Time I may once have spent reading – something I love – has disappeared. I need to find a way to balance everything that is important to me, and find that personal time.

Finally, I am determined to focus on being more present this year. 2013 is full of months that I spent either dwelling on bad things in the past or wishing time would hurry up and get me to that next season, holiday, or event that I was looking forward to. When I look back on my year, I have a hard time remembering the wonderful little happy moments that I know I enjoyed with my husband, friends and family. This year I will try to be better about living in the moment and appreciating the good things right in front of me. And thus – The Happy Jar was born!

HappyJar5

My husband and I have made a pact to appreciate moments while *in* the moment. The Happy Jar, however,  is a place where we will jot down special happenings and memories – so that we have a record of the important things. If I’m feeling down, I can turn to the Happy Jar to remind myself of our many blessings.

HappyJar2

We’ve already got a little something in there – thanks to our first snow day yesterday! Hubby & I are both in education, so the winter storm that hit the east coast brought us our first relaxing snow day of the year.

HappyJar

Emma braved the cold & snow in her little vest. She lasted about 5 minutes before coming to stand by the door – it was freezing!

photo(1)(1)

I know we will enjoy filling up our Happy Jar this year – and our plan is to sit and read through all the memories next New Year’s Eve!

HappyJar4

I hope your 2014 is off to a great start, and that you have a wonderful weekend! This post is scheduled to hit the air waves while I will be halfway to Pittsburgh on a quick little weekend flight to visit my BFF. I’m super excited to spend a few hours back in one of my favorite cities with my best bud Eric. I will be sure to enjoy every moment- IN the moment!!

Till next post!
– xo Laura

2013 At a Glance

I’m not going to lie to you, friends – 2013 has not been my favorite of years. From a personal standpointl, it has been a year of trials, new challenges, and loss. At the same time, 2013 held some wonderful, happy and memorable moments that I will cherish. Sometimes it seems as though the good may not always balance out the bad – yet on this, the eve of a *new* year, I am content to accept 2013 for the roller coaster year that it was, and thank my lucky stars for all of the wonderful parts, and for my husband, my family, my friends and my four-legged-bestie – who are always there through thick and thin. AND, lucky girl that I am, I also get to look back and thank all of YOU wonderful readers, who make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside with every comment, like & follow. I love writing, creating and thinking about Some Kind of Lovely Ride, and I love that you take the time out of YOUR day to check in with me for projects, stories & tidbits of life. YOU ARE AWESOME! Some Kind of Lovely Ride is the most amazing and therapeutic outlet for me, and I look forward to seeing what 2014 will bring for my little blog. (I’ve been carving out this little niche on the internets for nearly two years – can you believe it!)

So, I invite you to take a moment to look back with me on some of my favorite SKLR moments from 2013! If you want the quick version, you can see my little year-in-review video on my Instagram this morning!

2013 in Review

In January, a few months after we tied the knot, hubs & I were excited to have our DIY wedding featured on WeddingLovely along with hundreds of other gorgeous real weddings!

WatermarkWeddingFeature

We kept the love alive for Valentine’s Day with some homemade, heart shaped sugar cookies & milk.

vdaycookies9(1)

As the winter dragged on, I tackled a simple upholstery project and gave an old chair a pretty update!

afterfix(1)

This sweet little ring dish was such an easy project, I made a whole bunch and even gave one away!

ringdish1

With the promise of Spring came the start of my obsession with yellow and springtime – and a couple simple DIY artwork ideas for the home, like my State Love paper art & Gnome Sweet Gnome stenciled canvas.

artworkshelf

One of the most meaningful creative projects I did this year was adding a photo to a pair of lockets from Heartworks by Lori so my mother and I could carry a special memory of my Mommom close to our hearts.

lockets1(1)

Spring cleaning mode kicked in, and I created a cozy little reading nook and added some artwork & storage to my workspace area. I feel an entirely new overhaul of this space coming this year…!

readingnook

I spent the summer cultivating my green thumb with my little container garden of tomatoes, basil & snap peas. I can’t wait to give this another go in 2014!

fullylabledcontainers21

Probably the highlight of the year for me was planning & hosting a travel-themed bridal shower for my new sister-in-law Priscila, completely with DIY invitations, international foods & globes-hanging-from-trees! (Go check it out here, here & here!)

invite11(1)

Over the summer, we had our kitchen renovated and I got my open shelving! Hooray! It has been the most amazing difference in space & cheeriness!

kitchenbeforeafter1

I took some time to reflect and give thanks in November, and made the easiest chalkboard ever.

dsc_0177

We also added a new stained wood headboard in the bedroom, which I love to pieces.

Headboard2

And then the Christmas decorating began! You can see my decorated home, and links to some more projects in my holiday home tour posts here (kitchen), here (living room) and here (dining & bedroom).

ConsoleCollage

I was obsessed with burlap, and made burlap ornaments, a ribbon & burlap tree wall hanging, and my favorite Christmas project this year – the handmade burlap stockings I made with my mother.

stockings3

Overall, it was a pretty great year for projects and home updates! I’ve loved sharing them with you, and I sure hope you stick around with me in 2014. It’s sure to be a GREAT year – I’m convinced it’s going to be the best yet!

Happy New Year to you & yours! See you in the next one! ❤

Tissue Paper + Gold Barcart Banner

Hey friends! I hope you all had a wonderful, restful holiday. Ours was busy, filled with family & friends, and wonderful as always. Despite feeling a bit sad when the Christmas excitement comes to an end, I love the week between Christmas and New Years (which I am always so fortunate to have off with my husband, since we’re both in education). We are always so productive – in between visiting family and spending time with friends. It’s a great time to organize, clear the clutter, and refresh for a nice new start in the new year.

Cheers8

Do you have wild & exciting plans for NYE? Are you having a celebration of your own? Maybe you’ve got a barcart that needs some dressing up – in which case this little DIY is just for you!

CheersMaterials

My wonderful husband gave me a Silhouette Cameo for Christmas! I can’t even express how excited I am to figure out everything I can do with this baby. As a little “tester”, I used it to make these letters out of gold mirror cardstock. When it started ‘cutting’, I yelled for my husband to come and see how awesome it was! I know I’m super late to the Silhouette party, but boy am I happy to be here now!

Cheers1

Anyway, you can cut the letters any old way, if you don’t have a Silhouette. Then I folded a sheet of tissue paper in half and taped the letters onto the paper.

Cheers2

I then cut the garland into strips, and taped some pretty white & gold baker’s twine (from the dollar spot at target!) into the center of each strip.

Cheers3

Now my bar cart is all dressed up and ready to party!

Cheers4

I’m also obsessed with some of the other items on my cart right now (still lots of holiday stuff, I won’t take that down until after NYE) -like these awesome fox glasses from Paper Source (another Christmas gift from my amazing husband, though neither of us can tell you what they say).

FoxGlass

They match my fox-topped cocktail shaker bought on sale at Target last week.

FoxShaker

Our bar cart is stocked to the max with wine (holiday gifts from friends, coworkers, etc.) and two random bottles of tequila that we will probably never drink.

Cheers5

But who knows. Things might get crazy. Cheers! 🙂

DIY Holiday Card Display

It’s that time of year, when the mailbox is filled each day with beautiful holiday cards from people far more organized and productive than me! I love getting holiday cards from friends and family members, mostly featuring adorable babies these days. I always try to come up with a fun new way to display our cards, and this year I created this rustic, painted wood holder!

DIY Holiday Card Display

This was something I completely threw together out of stuff I had lying around. I had some leftover pieces of 1×3 pine from another (secret gift!) Christmas project, and so I just grabbed one and gave it a quick coat of white paint.

photo 15

Then I painted the tops of some clothespins a nice holiday red, glued them to the wood (four inches apart) and hot glued some mini bottle brush trees to them!

photo25

I didn’t want all of my friend’s babies showing up on Pinterest someday without their knowledge, so I snapped the pic above with some non-photo cards (like my favorite postcards from Rifle Paper Co. seen below!)

HolidayCardDisplay

In real life, however, you can picture this whole thing full of pretty families! A great reminder of all the wonderful people in our lives!

photo 23

What about you? How do you display your holiday cards? I’d love to hear about/see your ideas! And can you believe there are only 5 more days until Christmas! Oooh I am just getting so excited!!

Six Easy (and Practically Free) DIY Ideas for Holiday Artwork

6DIYHolidayArtworkIdeas

Hey guys! I had so much fun sharing my holiday decor in my Holiday Home Tour 2013 (which you can see here, here & here). Most of these ideas for easy (and super affordable) DIY holiday artwork were seen in the tour. I love simple little pieces that can be ‘subbed in’ for the non-seasonal art you may already have scattered throughout your home. Some of these pieces are just stuck on top of whatever print is typically displayed – which means you’ll save by not buying new frames, and you can pull out the holiday artwork and be back to ‘normal’ in a flash!

Here are six ways I updated my walls for the holidays this year. Since many of these pieces were created using supplies I already had on hand, my total ‘new’ costs for all of these pieces combined was probably somewhere around $10!

Burlap & Wood Reindeer Art

photo 1

To make this simple & rustic holiday art, I painted a wooden reindeer head cut out (found at Michael’s for under $2) with white craft paint (or whatever color you choose). Cover the glass with burlap (or whatever fabric you happen to have lying around), and glue the reindeer to the fabric. Stick it in your frame, and you’re done!

Stenciled Kraft Paper Art

XmasBedroomArt

Stencil a festive animal, word, or other design onto a piece of kraft paper. Frame it. Go get a pedicure with all the time you have leftover after this project. (Don’t have a stencil? Make one by printing out clip art in the design you want & cutting it out!) Chances are, you already have everything you need to do this… which makes it technically free! But if not, you can probably get everything you’d need for less than $5.

Framed Chalkboard + Wreath

HT6

If you don’t already have a framed chalkboard somewhere in your house, you can make one! I made mine without even opening a jar of paint – here’s how. Hang a wreath in front of your new chalkboard with some pretty ribbon, and add some inspirational text. But don’t thank me for this idea, I saw it here, here & here first. This one is ‘free’ to make too, if you already have a chalkboard, some ribbon, and a wreath!

 

Framed Holiday Card

ChristmasKitchen5(1)

This really can’t count as a “DIY” project as it pretty much only requires the ability to put something into a frame. But I am obsessed with these holiday postcards from Rifle Paper Company, and am using them this year to send quick well wishes to friends and family. I love them so much, that I framed one in my kitchen, and one in my bathroom! Use holiday cards from your stash, or a pretty one that you received this year, and enjoy another free new piece of holiday artwork!

DSC_1455

Merry & Bright Typography

I just played with some fonts on my computer and printed out this little fella onto some recycled cardstock and framed it. Boom! Easy artwork!

photo 4

Burlap & Ribbon Tree Wall Hanging

DSC_1429

I shared this little project last week and again – I made it completely out of supplies I already had on hand. (Ok, maybe I am a burlap/ribbon/glue gun hoarder… but maybe you are too!?) You can probably guess how I made it (think hot glue gun), but you can see the original post here!

DSC_1441

So, what do you think? Any ideas you would try in your home? What are some other quick & inexpensive ways to deck your walls for the holidays? I’d love to hear your ideas!

A Rustic Christmas in the City [Holiday Home Tour Part 3]

Welcome to the final installment of my photo tour of my little city home all decked out for Christmas. I started on Monday with my festive kitchen, and then I shared my ‘woodsy-glam’ living room, which, I’ve decided, basically feels like living in the woods – if everything was covered in silver and/or gold, glittery, rabies-free rodents hung from trees, and bar carts were aplenty. (Sounds like a pretty awesome camping trip, no?) Anyway, you can see the first two installments of this tour marathon here:

Kitchen

PicMonkey Collage(1)

Living Room

HomeTourCollage2

Our “dining room” is really just an extension of our open living space, that tries to act fancy with its pedestal table. Since we rarely eat at the table, the whole room is really just an excuse to display more pretty things.

HT4

HT13

HT6

HomeTourCollageBuffet

As you can see, I’ve continued the theme of mixing natural and rustic elements with pretty, shiny things. If I were a bird, I’d have a super chic twig nest.

Stockings1

My handmade burlap stockings are hung by the… uh.. console table with care from the tree branch my doting father cut for me. The table features some of my (growing) collection of trees. Emma’s “Christmas portrait” from two years ago makes a reappearance each year.

DSC_1308

HTConsoleCollage

HT8

ConsoleCollage

Some more burlap elements, some bottle brush trees in glass pedestal, and a pretty artificial poinsettia that won’t poison my dog.

PicMonkey Collage(5)(1)

And, to complete the tour, a look at my holiday touches in the bedroom:

XmasBed1 copy

I traded the burlap wreath that was hanging on my DIY Wooden Headboard for a more festive one with pretty red berries (again, fake, so they don’t kill my dog. If you’re a dog owner out there, I hope you’re all read up on the dangers of holiday foliage to pets!)

HolidayBedroomCollage

Well THANKS for joining me on this marathon! Now that the house is set, it’s time for me to get wrapping!

HolidayHomeTour2013Collage

Today’s post linked up at The Nesting Place’s 2013 Christmas Tour of Homes – head over to see more amazing decor & follow along on Instagram with hashtag #idhtbptbbchristmas (Translation: It doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful Christmas! So true!)