Laundry, laundry everywhere.

It’s been a long time coming but I finally have pictures of my laundry room.  One of my initial post on my Facebook group highlighted a few special touches that I just can’t live without and how this small room to which I spend so much time in was so boring.

The plain white walls one window and no personality all began it’s journey in the middle of a snow storm.  There were never big plans to re-do this space as it was not high on the priority list but thanks to a good husband and a crazy color choice for paint we began.

In the middle of the snow storm with a best friend we witnessed the falling of 3 over head cabinets from the wall.  Comical to say the least.  Imagine 4 kids 2 guys out shoveling snow during a blizzard and me and a girlfriend holding up cabinets half connected to the wall.  Poor installation was ultimately the reason for their demise.  This than opened a conversation and a week of Pintrest dreaming of re-doing the space.  Now don’t confuse me with having a great budget and access to a total re-do, but rather create a better layout and some paint colors.

Some items that I already had and knew I wanted to keep included my lost sock board.  Which is available to purchase thru my Etsy store. This re-purposed board holds the single socks that are looking for their “solemates”.

Lost Sock Board

A cleaning how to list which I reference while trying to act like a detective and figure out what is it and how to remove stains from kids clothes.  This list is cut from magazines, online searches and my own mother’s suggestions.

And some sorting for bleach, hand washing and storage so I didn’t have to see bottles and supplies.  This room provides the most amount of light to our second floor so the door is almost always open.  I needed this space to look bright, tidy and function all the time.

So we began…  The joy of prep work and set up

I picked a crazy color, I know but the orange was such a contrast from the rest of our house which is coastal with blues, yellow, greens and whites.  This room could fill my need of vibrant color.  I was only doing an accent wall and it wasn’t the living room so my husband agreed.  Now for a mariner all he could say it that it was international orange. I think life raft or home depot orange is accurate for us lay people.  In any form it is bright, keeps the light reflecting into the hall bright and can show off my crazier side.  Behr Premium Plus – Flame 210B-7.

wall orange I wanted to add some baskets for sorting that were wall mounted.  My floor space was limited so anything I could hang up was key.  Found these baskets at Home Depot made some tags and they work perfect.  The basket is removable so I can dump the load in as they are full and really weren’t too expensive.  I knew I wanted to add to this space some of my kids artwork.  Figured if I’m spending so much time here the artwork with the crazy colors would fit right in and make me smile.  My daughter painted this hot pink mermaid and it’s by far one of my favorites.

Drum roll please.  The after photos…    Now I’m very thankful for a second floor laundry room; a true room not a closet and not in the basement.  I’ve hauled my share of baskets from basements to laundry mats and all the way back to mom’s house.  Use the space you have and make it work for you.  Possibilities are truly endless.

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Princess Party Time

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So I just couldn’t do an Elsa party… I just couldn’t.  My daughter wanted one and I couldn’t swallow hosting or attending another Queen Elsa party.  I was able to talk her into Frozen but with a twist.  I was able to get her to name her favorite colors, she said  “pink and gold”.  With a little twisting we arrived at a Frozen Lemonade Stand.

I can’t begin party planning for anything without this amazing find thanks to my friends at Childhood 101.  This KIDS PARTY PLANNER is my first printout, I use to do it on scrap paper, but why do that, when Christie has laid it out so much nicer.party image

Now that’s she’s older an evite will do.  Nothing over the top just used pink and yellow to tell friends to come and play.

I hunted around the house for any pink, yellow and some “Elsa” blue items that we already had.  (It really helps that my company colors are blue and yellow)  Came up with some lanterns, parasols, tissue puffs, and a few great free print outs from Melissa at DesignEatRepeat.

The hard part was building an actual lemonade stand.  We spent an afternoon with the internet and picked out a bunch she liked.  I wanted something that would have more than one purpose.  It is made to be a general stand so it can go in the playroom to be a store counter, grocery store, or anything they can imagine.  It is also small enough that it fits in the truck so when they are older they can actually use it as a lemonade stand curb side. The stand is now available for rent, check out details by clicking here.

   

I channeled my inner Pre-K want-to-be-teacher and we filled the lemonade stand with a full stock of pretend goodies, lemons, ice cubes, pitchers filled with duplos and foam to be lemonade, wooden spoons, and a cash register.  This became the entertainment for the afternoon with friends.

Centerpieces were easy and will find another life after this weekend.  I bought lemons and dumped them into clear vases.  This whole thing makes me giggle as all I can think of is Jennifer Aniston in the movie “The Breakup” when she wants to make a 12 lemon centerpieces and her dear boyfriend only buys 4.  Again my sister came thru for me and made some rocking flower arrangements too.

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What’s a party without cake?  This is where Elsa comes into play.  Because we can never have just one event there are a few variations of cake.  We hosted a small family party, the day of, and a friends party.

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Of course we served lemonade in both flavors.  We also hit our our local Del’s Lemonade for some frozen yumminess.  After the kid’s party ended we added some adult versions of Del’s for those that stayed for the afternoon.

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 Some of my favorite party details included.  Table settings and decorations.  At this point I’m past party favors that hit the trash once you get to the car.  These will hopefully be used, enjoyed and than no longer kicked around our friends home.

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Again another wonderful party, weather, friends and family.  I do love a good party but golly they can be a lot of work.  Until next year.

V A C A T I O N

Ohm… a well needed vacation, sun, sand, pool, surf and family time.  Spent a week in Ft. Myers with amazing accommodations.  I won’t lie it took me a week to pack and prep this family to make a week long trek to the sun, but so worth it.  Here is my cheat sheets.

A well laid out packing list.  I couldn’t survive without it.  I’ve used it and edited it year after year, trip after trip.  So i know it will come thru when I forget something obvious.  Packing List Grid

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Space saver packing bags are gods gift to families.  I only buy the clear ones and pack and label everything.  When were arrive we just lay them out and don’t bother unpacking them into drawers.  (Unless I’m setting up shop for a good long time)  Don’t get the vacuum ones as you can’t depend on access to one while away from home.IMG_4238

Kids beaded ID bracelets live in the bottom of my purse for field trips, family adventures and of course airplane rides.  These gems have no problem going thru metal detectors and have our phone numbers just in case.  We’ve taught our kids to find another parent and state their name and say “I’m lost can you please call my mom” lifting up their arm with the bracelet.  Note these don’t work so well at water parks but a ball point pen with some liquid bandaid over it do the trick for a day of fun. Click here to purchase your own custom bracelets.

On Wrist

Laundry, it will never end as a mom.  I use this laundry trick each time we travel.  I’ve shared this before on my facebook group .  Pack an old pillow case one that will stand out, so the housekeepers don’t scoop it up. (This was mine from when I was a kid at summer camp, such a classic). When you get to your hotel pin it up between some hangers and just fill away. When you come home it’s all in one place.  P.S. you can also toss the whole bag in a space saver bag for the trip home.

Dirty Laundry

Airplane munchies?  Thankfully when traveling with kids you usually get a side smile from the people at TSA when you roll thru with a bag that looks like your pantry and fridge on a hot date.  But just know that every bit they munch on, is less for you to carry and one melt down avoided.  I’ve seen this before and golly so smart.  I didn’t have to chase any Cheerios across the gate at the airport.

It was a wonderful trip.  Time away, in the sun with friends and family.  I couldn’t ask for anything more.  Spent time pool side and sitting at the beach.  Ate ice cream cones with the kids and walked around town to do some sightseeing.  Truly my kind of vacation.

Do you have any summer adventures coming up?  What will your tricks be?  Have you tried any of the above, if so which worked best?

Patriots Parade Day

I’m so excited that our hometown New England Patriots won the Superbowl.  An amazing game that brought cheers and tears to my house Sunday night.  Some of the kids were up late and their parents fully emerged in the game.  Today we celebrate their victory with the Boston Duck Boats!  I’ve had these little cloths in my basement stock, I’d expect that they won’t stick around for long as they are great for the gym, kitchen, and as baby burp cloths.  Whatever the use they will mop it up, order soon I don’t have that many.New_England_Patriots2 IMG_7976