Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Barn wood Inspiration...or Mom, This is Your Fault!

So, is this post about barnwood or am I upset with my mom?
Never fear........i'm not fighting with mamabear.
But........my new obsession is a tiny bit her fault.
And my dad's.
Yep.......that wonderful man!
You see, I really like the direction my house/decor is going.
Whites, creams, rustic woods and signs, metallic, burlap, western.
Hahahaha........yes, it's ALL going on in here:)
I think I'm rebelling against living in Florida and the HOT weather we get
9 months out of the year. 


Anyway, I realized what is missing in my house.
A barnwood accent wall!
And that is exactly what my mom has in her family room.
(Her colors are darker and warmer than mine though)
For me, in my very light house, that wall would be awesome!  
The contrast is really popular and very fresh, too.
Now if only I could get wooden beams for the ceiling.
Oh wait.......she has those too.
From old railroad ties!

I mean, just look at some of these rooms.
Accent walls, tables stairs, beams, shelves, beds........
you name it, it's happening right now!
But I have no way to do this, so I use accent pieces.
Better than nothing............
unless my mom lets me do a makeover in her room.
it wouldn't take much..........it could be AWESOME!
Okay, I'll stop.

But before I do,
look at some of these wall hangings made from barnwood.
LOVE them!
United states barnwood cut out source: All things thrifty
"purpose" sign, upper left corner: lissalaneous thoughts
XOXOXO
Suzanne

Friday, October 24, 2014

5 Tips for a Perfectly Made Bed!

I love the way hotel beds are made.
Sometimes they may not be the color or style I love,
but the overall effect is so neat and crisp.
So when I stumbled across these tips from ABC.COM,
I combined them with a few I knew from my nursing days
and had to pass them on.
Here are the five steps for turning your ho-hum bed into one worthy of a five-star hotel........
1.   Keep it White. Or, as white as you can.  
Every bedding store sells beautiful, colorful bedding. 
And while that's fine, if you truly want your bed to resemble that of a hotel, you need to keep it white. Think about it:  Every fancy hotel you've been to has more likely
 than not had all, or mostly, white bedding. The good news is that by using white bedding,
 you may not need to buy anything new, 
at least when it comes to pillowcases and sheets. You may have them around the house. 
 Just get them out of storage and wash/bleach for a crisp whiteness. 
 Hotels typically use a sheet – not a blanket or duvet – as the top layer of bedding. 
But, if you want to add a pop of color or a personal touch, add a coverlet to the bottom of the bed or a few colorful pillows.

2.  Layer it Like a "Bed Sandwich".
 First comes the bottom, fitted sheet.
 Next, the top sheet. If you'll be using another top sheet as the top layer, leave some extra at the top of this sheet to fold over the layer that comes in between. That's the down or down alternative comforter. This is worth buying if you don't have one; it gives your bed a fluffy quality.  You can use a duvet cover or another top sheet as the top layer.
Bonus: If you already have a featherbed, add it as the bottom layer. If not, consider buying one, they come in a range of prices.  
(This also comes minus the feathers if you prefer.....I do.)
So far we have a featherbed, a fitted sheet, a top sheet, a down comforter, a second top sheet and a coverlet at the bottom for that pop of color.

3.  Pillow Protectors!   Inexpensive and durable, pillow protectors should go on every one of yours. They not only extend the life of your pillow by protecting it from the oils on our heads that can stain over time, but they give pillows a smooth look under your pillowcases.
You may need a few more pillows for your bed makeover......ones that will hold their shape more than anything.  Pillows you put your head on should lay flat, and all decorative pillows should "stand up," according to one expert.  You may end up with about 8 pillows by the time you are done but that is a personal choice.

4.  Tuck, Tuck, Tuck!!!  Take a look at the bed the next time you check into a hotel. Not only are the corners of the bed garments tucked in, but so is everything else, right down to the edges of the pillow cases. No loose ends translates to a tailored, polished look so common at luxury hotels. (P.S. In nursing school we learned to "miter" the corners. It gives a super neat appearance.)

5. Iron your sheets.  
Okay...this is NOT my idea.  Yuck.  Ironing.   
 They say you only need to iron the top layer of bedding.
Hotel maids in 5 star resorts iron it on the bed instead of struggling with a big top sheet or duvet on an ironing board, and that definitely makes it easier. 
Use starch to make the bed look crisp.

That's it!  
Now I won't be doing all this but you may be the one to try:)
Me.......I love a perfectly rumpled, slept in bed!

XOXO
Suzanne

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Style 101.......25 Top Tips!

So here I go again, passing on style tips that
I could use myself!  Oh well...let's figure this out together:)
TOPS
~Wear scoop or v-neck tops to frame the face and "open you up"; few of us look our best in crew neck.  
~Wear blouses with camisoles, and leave the first 2 to 3 buttons open to reveal a small triangle of skin.  Popping your collar a tiny bit (keyword: tiny) frames your face and elongates your neck
~If you want to wear a turtleneck and can pull it off, go for it.  But avoid mock turtlenecks…..they tend to shorten your neck
~If you are very petite, stay away from large cowl necks or too many ruffles that overwhelm you
~Length of tops is important.  Not too short (you need enough to "scrunch" around your hips, reinforcing a smaller waistline); not too long (you don't need to frame the bum)
~Avoid baby doll tops unless you are in fact a baby doll or you are pregnant
~Avoid pockets on your tops…….specifically pockets that are very small or very large

PANTS & SKIRTS
~To balance the hips, choose a boot cut pant, narrow through the hip and thigh, slightly flared from the knee down.  This cut reinforces an hourglass shape.  (However, if you want to downplay too much hourglass, do the opposite)
~Skinny pants create an inverted triangle.  Wear only if the area you want to emphasize is your best area.
* * * *Pants that are cuffed pull the eye down and shorten the legs. Pleated pants add bulk around your stomach
~Cargo pants add bulk to the worst possible spots - your hips and thighs.  Avoid these like the plague.   (Hey….I’d give anything to wear a cute pair but no supermodels here so we avoid them:)
~Capris shorten the legs and widen the ankles. Choose a length more akin to a peddle pusher that hits right at the ankle (think Audrey Hepburn)  
~Skirts look best at or just above the knee.  Choose a pencil if you are comfortable with your waistline.  A-line and gored skirts are great for pear and apple shapes
~Wear long skirts (as in below the calf) with boots and make sure they're cut on the bias so they don't look frumpy

SHOES
~Supposedly, shoes with pointy toes, cut-away arches and those cut low at the toe are the most.  flattering because they extend the long vertical line of your legs (I disagree…they look like wearable boats!)  
~Avoid chunky heels, t-straps and ankle straps as they visually cut off the leg. (Only if this is a concern)
~Throw away all your man clogs.  
~Choose well-made shoes in good materials - you are taking care of your feet, ankles, knees, hips and back if you do
~No matter the color of dress/skirt you are wearing, nude pumps are the most flattering and elongating.  Watch Miss America sometime.  

COLOR & PATTERN
~Pair black with other neutrals (as opposed to primary colors) - white, camel, grey, brown, etc. for a more sophisticated look.  Pair with bright primaries if you have the coloring.
~Pair primary colors (pink, blue, green, yellow, etc.) with white or off-white for a fresher look
~As for khaki pants and shorts - this is the color of school uniforms and camp counselors, and restaurant hosts.  If the shoe fits……. hehehe
~Pattern is tricky.  Look at the best dressed women - they most often dress in solids and add interest with their accessories.  I know trends sometimes show patterns but proceed with caution.  They are tricky…….
~Choose statement jewelry instead of a bunch of teensy pieces. 

* * * *Most of all, wear what you love in the color you love, regardless of the "latest" trends.  Trust your instincts.  You need to be comfortable, happy and functional.  These are just SUGGESTIONS...not law:)
XOXO
Suzanne

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Crazy for Cinnamon...Cinnamon Cookies, Cinnamon Drinks, Cinnamon Beauty........

Hey there,
Nothing says Fall like Cinnamon.......and Apples.......and Pumpkins!
But for today it's all about Cinnamon.
Let's get to it........
Cinnamon Bun Pops!!!
Nothing too difficult here...just cook mini cinnamon rolls on a stick
 and have the frosting or glaze available to dip the pops in.
Delicious AND Cute!
 Don't feel like cooking?
How about a yummy Cinnamon......or "Cinnabon" Room Spray?
I don't know.......this would make me realllllly hungry:)
Okay, How about a Cinnamon Vanilla Shake?
Oh, I had a recipe to share but it was so complicated.......
all you need to do is mix milk, vanilla ice cream and cinnamon
 in a blender and VOILA!)
(Add Pumpkin for a Pumpkin Shake!
Hmmmmmm.........what next.
Well, Cinnamon Roll Caramel Popcorn, that's what!
CINNAMON ROLL CARAMEL CORN
INGREDIENTS
3/4 cup unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
8 cups popcorn
INSTRUCTIONS
Preheat oven to 250°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Stir in brown sugar, corn syrup, cinnamon and salt. Without stirring, bring to a boil for 4 minutes. Remove from heat and add vanilla and baking soda.
In a large bowl, combine popcorn and brown sugar mixture until evenly coated.
Spread popcorn onto prepared baking sheet in an even layer. Place into oven and bake for 45 minutes, stirring in 15 minute intervals. 
Let cool completely before serving.

Next up.......Cinnamon Roll Sugar Cookies
Click here for the link: Cinnamon Roll Sugar Cookie

More Yum.......Cinnamon Roll Cookie Bars!
Cinnamon Roll Cookie Bars
Ingredients:
Bars
1 (15.25 oz) box Vanilla Cake Mix
1 (4 serving) box Cook and Serve Vanilla Pudding
3/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 eggs
1 Tbsp water
2 Tbsp cinnamon
Frosting
1 (8 oz) block cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
5 cups powdered sugar
Cinnamon Sugar to garnish
3 Tbsp sugar + 1 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350°
Spray 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray, set aside.
In large bowl combine all ingredients for the bars. Stir until there are no lumps.
Spread into prepared baking dish and bake 20-25 minutes until edges are golden.
Let cool completely before frosting.
Frosting
In mixing bowl beat together cream cheese and butter until smooth. Slowly add the powdered sugar and continue beating for 1-2 minutes until smooth and creamy.
Spread on cooled bars.
If desired sprinkle cinnamon sugar on top for garnish
Cut into squares when ready to serve.

Well, if you like to eat it, why not wear it? lol

And here is a great link for some Vanilla Pumpkin Cinnamon Scrub:

These Cinnamon Roll Candles are truly IRRESISTIBLE
And you can find them at : The Irresistible Cookie Jar Candle Co.

And last but not least,
Cinnabon Candy Canes, just in time for the Holidays!!!
Well, there you have it!
Enough Cinnamon for you?
Hope y'all enjoyed this!
XOXOXO
Suzanne

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Older I Get, The Less "Gray Areas" There are For Me.....

Gray Area- 

definition; a situation in which the rules are not clearor in which you are 


not sure what is right or wrong.   Uncertainty and being uncertain; 

 uncertaintydoubtreservationquestion,reservedistrusta question mark

 over somethingscepticismdoubt yourself...

The other day, my husband said to me "Don't sugarcoat it.  Clearly there is no gray area 


with you.  It's black or white. "

Made me think.


....
We weren't even having a profound discussion or anything.

I believe I shared.....strongly.....my opinion of a sports broadcaster who had the

NERVE to criticize my favorite football team!

(The nerve, I say!!!)

He's right about one thing......I am loyal to a fault so if someone or something I love gets 

criticized.....it's VERY clear to me!

But what about the rest of life and it's issues?

I realize that my gray areas......those murky waters of indecision are getting less and less.

Oh.....I still can't make up my mind to save my LIFE about what to order for dinner,


Or what color throw pillow to buy, or what color to paint the bathroom.

But when it comes to ISSUES......political, parenting, education, FAITH.......


I pretty much know what I think/believe and that's that.

Black or White.

I will listen to other ideas and if there is a need I will try to see things 

in a different way.

But I can't make promises.  Does that sound terrible?

I believe what I believe and I am passionate about it.

I personally think that our society has been dumbed down and we have lost our voice because 

we are all so worried about being politically correct.

Who said we need to agree all the time?  We don't.

We can be kind......and compassionate....but be who you are and say what you feel.

  Kind of like my favorite football team.  To me, they are perfect.


So don't mess with me.....or them.

Roll Tide:)

What about you?  Black and White?  Or are you more in the Gray area?


XOXO

Suzanne

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