Ikea Hack - How to make a cookbook shelf

The cookbook shelf is one of my favourite elements of the kitchen. I really do think that it it is one of the main details that makes our ikea kitchen look custom. Up until now I haven't had an chance to describe how you can recreate this look - but thanks to some vacation time and Aubrey helping me with some "how to" details, I have put together this post just in time to end 2012. This post is long with diagrams ... I'm really hoping that it is clear and helps you design your own Ikea kitchen in the future. xo Lindsay
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5 4 3 2 one...to 2013

Lets keep those little fingers safe on the last day of 2012.  If you have wee ones like me put your sparklers in a glass bottle or vase before lighting.  They can watch the pretty sparkles without touching.

These star shaped sparkler holders from The Pretty Blog are lovely for big and small.

Have a lovely evening, stay safe, and may 2013 be peaceful and prosperous for us all.

Kitchen Progress: Phase 1

{tongue and groove beadboard installed}

{first coat of primer on}

Adam took some time off over the holidays, so we got started on Phase 1 of our kitchen makeover (naturally). We took a chisel and hammer to the rest of the dusty rose tile backsplash we inherited with the house and Adam installed tongue and groove beadbord planks, which he also ran up the backs of the upper cabinets. He also brought our kitchen outlets up to code by installing GFCIs. Then we caulked all the seams, sanded the cabinets and primed everything. Next up: we paint.

So far, I'm really happy with how it's turning out (sorry for the crappy iPhone photos - a lot of the work happens in the evening, after The Bean goes to bed). I wouldn't choose beadboard for my dream kitchen, but the look works with our existing cabinets and I can't believe how much it's already transformed the space (again, sorry for the crappy photos). We tried the open cabinets for awhile before committing to the beadboard and I don't think I could go back to doors now, at least not in our tiny kitchen.

My inspiration is a cross between this:


and this:


Although Adam and I still haven't agreed on a colour for the lower cabinets. Phase 2 will involve trimming out and painting the lower cabinets, doing something about the ugly countertop and replacing the faucet. There are a few big projects planned for Phase 3 (new exterior door, new flooring, a dishwasher!!!), but I'm trying not to think about that too much right now. Gotta finish Phase 1 first.

5 4 3 TWO 1...TO 2013

I love the idea of having a snapshot of each child each year, and what better time to start than New Years Eve.
Erin from Lansdowne Life came up with the great annual kids questionnaire, meant for birthdays, but easily tailored for New Years Eve.  Would be a fun thing to do to keep the kids busy, and lovely to do each year so that you can track how they change.

Questionnaire from Landsdowne Life, new years eve party diy via Project Junior.

Erin's questionnaire is an interactive pdf that allows you to enter the child's age and form, even gives you a few font options.  I will just be changing the final question to "where were you on New Years Eve"

Can't wait to see wha they all say.

5 4 three 2 1...to 2013

I will be drinking mostly water on New Years Eve as I will be doing the driving.  But in the seach for the perfect cocktail I just could not go past champagne.  Oh alright - you can drop a raspberry in it if you must.

Images: Raspberry and mint champagne cocktail via That Inspirational Girl, Gaetan Lee

As Lily Bollinger is reputed to have said..
"I only drink champagne when I'm happy, and when I'm sad. Sometimes I drink it when I'm alone. When I have company, I consider it obligatory. I trifle with it if I am not hungry and drink it when I am. Otherwise I never touch it - unless I'm thirsty."

Have fun and drink responsibly everybody.

5 FOUR 3 2 1...to 2013

Should old acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind...
We'll take a cup of kindness yet, for the sake of auld lang syne...
For old lang syne my dear, for auld lang syne...
We'll take a cup of kindness yet, for the sake of auld lang syne...

Images via A Field Journal & Simply Seductive

Ever wondered what it meant?  
Have question will google, drum roll... and the answer is "for the sake of old times"

Now you know!   Want more?
 - first printed in 1711 by James Watson
 - singing the song on Hogmanay and New Years Eve first started in Scotland
What is Hogmanay?  Scottish word for the last day of the year.

Its never to late to learn something new!

bits + pieces

With orders wrapped up, I closed down the shop at the end of last week and totally unplugged. No e-mails to my phone, no checking twitter, no reading blogs. I needed a little break from it all. Over the last week we've celebrated my Brother's birthday, my half birthday, Christmas Eve dinner, Christmas, and our Boxing Day dinner. I pretty much moved into my Mom's house. I'm taking the next week to continue this - just relaxing and trying to stay away from the office/computer and finish up on some craft projects. Here are some shots of the holidays in our house. Hope you all had a wonderful time with those you love. xo Linds

shots above/ my brother's birthday balloons / totally forgot to mail our christmas cards - it was one of those years / craft project in the works / note by my Mom on the dishwasher...she has the best outlook / my little guy / snow!

five 4 3 2 1...to 2013

With the old year almost over its time to start thinking about 2013.  Ashley at She Makes a Home really got me thinking about setting goals with soul.  
I really do believe in the power of crystalising exactly where you want to be in your mind.  The act of conscious intent is sometimes enough to set you on the path to achieving what you want.
Tassel garland wall by Confetti System via The Selby
This blog is an example of that.  I procrastinated for ages but once I made the mental commitment and set myself on the path the road unfolded before me.
Half a year later I am reinventing myself as a social media strategist, loving writing again for the first time in too long, and going to Alt Summit to find out even more about the blog world.

It is easy to get swept along by the hustle and bustle of life and not take the time to really think about goals.  I realised that what I wanted a decade ago is not what I want anymore.  It has taken me a while to accept that I can let go of old ambitions which are no longer relevant, that letting go is not a failure but rather clearing the path to take on new challenges.

2012 has been a huge year for us.  We have all had to adjust to being a family of four as Miss J grew from tiny bub to an active little person with a big personality and lots of energy.  We (as parents) have had to adjust to Miss E needing a little more independence.  It is hard to give them the space to grow even when they are ready for it.   And the Voice of Reason and I have been preoccupied with completing building our home, which took much more energy, time and money that we ever could have imagined.  I am looking forward to putting these challenges behind us and setting new goals for 2013.

I am still getting my new goals clear in my mind, there are a few days yet.  I know that I want to spend quality time with all my family, find time for myself for fitness and career, perhaps an adventure - I need to get them clearer. 
Hope you are setting yours too, think clearly from the head, feel your needs from your heart, don't be afraid to tell people what they are, and work hard towards making them come true.

Happy Everything!

Just wanted to quickly pop in to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! As you can see, Hannah enjoyed celebrating her first Christmas (the outfit was a gift from my dad and his wife) and somehow we managed to sleep ten people (including one baby and two kids) in our tiny house on Christmas Eve! Now the plan is to relax :)

Happy Christmas!

1,000 Likes and My Favorite Things Giveaway

So folks! The time has come to make the announcement for our giveaway over here at RHI! I am so excited to be able to share this opportunity with you and giveaway some of the things that make life just a little more fun for me!

So, are you ready?
Here goes:
ONE lucky follower will get to win a "box" full of goodies next week when this giveaway closes.
The box of goodies will include but will not be limited to:
Handmade Goods
Small Found Antique and Vintage Items and Ephemera
Life Beautiful Logo
FOLK Magazine  

What do you have to do to win? Well, I thought you'd never ask!
I am trying out something new this time around with the giveaway. Rafflecopter is a new and easy way to host giveaways on your blog. I've heard a lot about it and thought since I had a few different ways to enter, this would be the easiest way to streamline your entries.
It's really pretty easy.
While all the ways are not required, the more stipulations you follow, the more entries you receive.
At the close of the contest, one winner will be randomly drawn and take away the fabulous prizes!
Just in case you're like me and really don't want to read thru everything on the Rafflecopter Widget (Just keepin it real), I will break everything down here.
1. "LIKE" RHI on Facebook (Mandatory to qualify)
2. Tweet about us and this amazing giveaway to all of your friends, coworkers, family and strangers too!
3. Follow RHI on Twitter and TWEET about it if you can. Use hashtag #RHIGiveaway.
4. Follow RHI on Pinterest
5. Leave a comment here and tell me why you want to have this bundle of goodies! (Mandatory)

It probably wouldn't hurt to follow here on the blog too! Just sayin...
So, there you go! FIVE ways to win...two of which are mandatory. Sorry, I know that makes it sound so UNfun.
  • You may only enter each category ONCE but you can Tweet this as often as you'd like!
  • One email address/IP address per entry

Have questions? Please email me for answers!
Best of luck to you! Can't wait to announce the winner!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Don't you love...a little christmas spirit #4

I received this gorgeous card designed and drawn by my talented friend Philippa.  Philippa has been designing and printing her own Christmas card for many years, always with her fabulous sense of humour.  We always love getting them.  The good news is that next year she will finally be starting her own card making business (you will hear about it here), so next year you can get your own too!  Until then I have her pemission to share mine.

Happy Christmas to all, may it be peaceful and full of joy.

Card design copyright of Philippa Farmer. 

Tradition. The Hudson's Bay Co. Christmas Windows

Aubrey, Oscar, my sister and I drove down to see The Hudson's Bay Christmas Windows this week. It was my sisters idea to go down - she e-mailed me a link to this article in the Toronto Star and I realized we just had to visit with Oscar. Although we used to do this as kids, it has been years since I had made a trek on a wintery night to see the windows. Big hugs to my sister for encouraging this tradition to continue for Oscar. xo

Ps., Oscar didn't really know what to make of the windows and stayed on Aubrey's shoulders for the visit.  It is definitely worth a visit - with or without kids. :)

Photo inspiration + links for your weekend

source: lonny.com

Have you checked out Lonny's photo archives yet? My apologies in advance for the hours you will waste there :)

Here are a few links to get you through till Christmas Eve:

-Need a last-minute gift idea? Check out NPR's Best Books of 2012 - there's a list for everyone on your list.
-Have you heard of Rdio? We've been using it for a few months and love it. Hello, Christmas albums.
-I want to see almost all of these movies.
-But sometimes 'worst of' lists are more fun.
-This is hilarious. Like laugh 'til you cry funny (I did).

Our holiday break officially starts today. I'm taking next week off from the Internet to enjoy the holidays with family and friends, but I'll be back in the New Year with some fun projects and house updates. Happy Holidays and best wishes for the New Year!


Holiday Linky Party: Kids and Christmas and The PERFECT Christmas Tree

Today's the final day of the  Home for the Holidays linky party! I hope you all have had a chance to either hop around to some of the other girls' blogs participating in the party or, even better, link up and share some of your projects and ideas!
At first, I really didn't know what I was going to share for this and, honestly, this season has been so full of things that we HAVE to do, we haven't made a TON of time to do things that we just LIKE to do so when we have a moment to squeeze in precious family time or traditions, we jump on it.
I feel like the Thanksgiving and Christmas Holidays are a great time, amongst others of course, to build new family traditions and take that extra time to spend with loved ones and other people in your life whom God has blessed you with.
We jumped on the opportunity this year to purchase our Christmas tree a bit earlier than we normally do and bought it only a couple of days after Thanksgiving.
Last year we trekked up to a tree farm and longed for the experience of cutting our own tree and all that comes along with the idea of that. It really wasn't a bad experience but kinda left us longing for more so we decided we'd still buy a live tree but, instead, we opted to shop a local market (grocer) instead of traveling to the tree farm.
We weren't disappointed. We got a live tree. We still put it on top of the car. The kids were still able to decorate{ish}. We were all happy in the end.
Especially this guy. This is Caleb, our eldest. This was his stance as he decided where to place the first ornament that he hung. As you can see, the ornaments are pretty spread out and random here. Which, well...I just couldn't let go untampered.
There's a bit of a story behind that.
Growing up, our trees were always perfect. Literally. Every ornament and light had strategic placement. Every piece of tinsel (which we actually didn't use often) hung PERFECTLY.
Fast forwarding 20 years later, I've carried many of those same Christmas tree "traditions" with me. When we first had kids it wasn't much of an issue. They were too young to have any desire to decorate the tree and that was fine with me. Eh, hm. Confession...
Of course, as they've grown older, they want to take part in the festivities. And why shouldn't they? Every child should have the memory of decorating their Christmas tree, right? Right?
So, this year, my hubby suggested letting them help. (Yes, that was a real conversation that we had that involved real emotion) We settled on letting them decorate the tree however they wanted and then later I would rearrange the tree to make it look the way I thought it should. That's a compromise, isn't it?
I know some of you out there are probably scoffing right now but this is real growth for me.
Some of you may wonder if our kids were hurt or scarred by my rearranging.
The answer is, not a bit...I totally involved them in that process too.
Let's just say I lent a gentle, guiding hand along the way.
See...they're still excited. Still happy to be helping. Still a sense of wonder and amazement.
This is what we ended up with after the kids helped.
I still can't figure out if he was looking at the tree in wonder or confusion. Ha!
What I took away from this:
I am learning how to slowly relinquish control in the area of decorating MY Christmas tree. Next year, they get their own to decorate however they please.
What our children took away from this experience:
Lots of laughs and fun as they "helped" hang their ornaments on the tree and a memory that will last a lifetime.
Wishing you a PERFECT Christmas! *wink*

Be sure to hope on over to This, That and Life's blog and link up your family traditions!

don't you love...a little christmas spirit #3

I am thrilled with the Christmas tree pinatas I made for our Christmas lunch table.  They turned out a little larger than I had imagined but they look fabulous as centrepieces.
I did a little mock up of our table to give you the picture.  

Miss E and Miss J don't know yet but I am going to stuff one pinata with chocolates and a few small toys.  Imagine their faces when I tell them there are hidden treats.

I made tasseled ornaments for the plates, for a little extra vavavoom. 
After lunch we will punch through the bottom for a final bit of festive fun.  

Its not to late for you to make one too.
One evening crafting as you watch Christmas movies should do it.  

- Make a cone out of cardboard
- Cut strips of fringe in the tissue paper colours that catch your fancy
- Glue the fringe layers, starting from the bottom and over lapping so that all layers are visible
- turn over and fill with treats
- glue layers of tissue paper over base to seal treats in

For inspiration visit this lovely tissue tassle diy at Linen Lace & Love.

I love the soft gold and pinks, seems I am still feeling in the pink.
Merry Christmas to one and all!

scenes from the house

The tree is decorated, cookies are made, and a few decorations made it out - like my beloved brass reindeer that I scored on Etsy a few years ago. Some ornaments didn't come out , I decided to scale it back a little bit this year.The theme in our house is always the same - we pull out the same decorations year after year and slowly build up on our collection. I stay away from colour trends, and stick with things that bring back memories. In other news, I'm still working. Shipping and packing orders - I really should have closed down the shop much earlier than I did. Making a note to do that next year. I'll be taking a few weeks off after Christmas to work on some new art for my publisher, paint, and launch the 2013 collection for the shop.

Ps., Oscar didn't love us decorating the tree at first. I don't think he understood the concept of hanging ornaments. He wanted to play with each one. One would go up, he'd get mad, pull it off and play with it. There was some creative distraction thanks to my Mom. Now he likes it decorated, although I still find him taking ornaments off to play with - I'm not too picky about that. It's kind of cute to see the nutcrackers talking to his trains on the floor. ;)

Home for the Holidays: Christmas Decor with Lindauer Designs

So, yesterday we took a day of silence as bloggers in honor of those who lost their lives in the tragedy that took place in Connecticut last week. My prayers and hope for healed hearts and minds go out to the families, friends and others effected by this.
Today, Laura over at Lindauer Designs is hosting Christmas Décor for our Home for the Holidays party. Are any of you familiar with her work? She's pretty amazing and she works with her husband to create custom designs for clients in the Houston area.
If you haven't visited her blog, today is the day. Stop by, show some love, leave a comment and don't forget to link up all of your holiday décor! I can't wait to see what you have to share.
I leave you with a bit of Christmas inspiration for your own home!
I just love the way Ally from Home by Ally used this classic swag on her staircase.
My mama's mini Christmas tour 2012.  http://homebyally.blogspot.com/2012/12/mamas-christmas-living-entry-tour-2012.html
And this wonderful package that's definitely worthy of being display. I love how the natural paper makes the sparkle and other elements pop. Great job Uncommon Designs!
How about some sparkle and a little JOY.....
And for all of you shabby, French cottage lovers out there...this one's for you.
Ph. via splendidsass.blogspot.it/2012/10/in-my-thoughts-and-jingle-jingle-design.html

Okay, now get out there and link up all of your goodness over at Laura's! She's waiting!


Lovin' this season,

Wordless Wednesday


diy clay tags

I was inspired to do some crafting when I saw a roundup of clay tags by Stefanie at Brooking Limestone.  These are super easy and just involves Sculpey + a stamp.  My favourite tag is the bark one - the original bark stamp is via Live. Laugh. Rowe.  I decided to make circle bark tags like she did, but also did a rectangular one (shown above)

I used a straw to punch holes in the top of each tag. Some clay pieces I left without holes and made them into seals, like the one in the last photo. Simply hot glue gun onto a parcel!

Anyhow, this project is kind of last minute fun for the holidays. Enjoy!

xo Linds

Where to buy:
Star TagStar stamp via Penny Paper Co. 
P seal - I used a toy wooden block as a stamp
S Tag - Custom Initial Stamp via Penny Paper Co.
Bark Tag - I made my own, but you can buy a similar one off Amazon 
Twine: Red + Pink Twine via Penny Paper Co. 

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