Teen Boy’s Bedroom Makeover: $100 Room Challenge The Reveal

 

100-Room-Challenge-Graphic

Welcome to  Week Five (the reveal!!) of the $100 Room Challenge hosted by Erin of Lemons, Lavender and Laundry!  If you are not familiar with the challenge you can read about it here. For this month I am making over my teenage son’s bedroom. It’s in need of some major help, mostly of the cleaning variety! The before pictures can be seen in Week One , the closet makeover can be found in Week Two , the new paint was debuted in Week Three and the organized desk was revealed in Week Four.

Let’s remember what the room looked like before. Filthy, disorganized and general chaos. I really don’t know how he managed living in that mess. It stressed me out just looking at it!

$100 room challenge makeover teen boy bedroom jersey girl in the south before

And now here is the after!!! I am happy to say that I checked off every goal! Here is a reminder of what I had hoped to accomplish from week one.

  1. Replace the bedding. His old set has seen better days.
  2. Display shelving for all of his creations.
  3. New art work
  4. Lighten the walls with a fresh coat of paint. I do love the paint color but the dark color is too much for this room.
  5. New storage options for both the closet and bedroom itself.
  6. A functional organized desk area that is conducive to completing homework.

100 room challenge teen boy bedroom jersey girl in the south

Ahhh!!! It’s clean, bright and organized! I am no longer having anxiety when I have to go in! My son is much happier now too!

100 room challenge teen boy bedroom jersey girl in the south

The new wall color made a huge difference in how the room feels. While it’s never going to be filled with natural light due to having only one window it is much better with the new wall colors.

100 room challenge teen boy bedroom jersey girl in the south

I shopped the house and found some new decor that was a bit masculine for his bedroom. While he still has Legos displayed it feels more grown up now.

I was also able to knock off the last item of my initial goal list this week: storage. This bookcase was found at Goodwill for $20.25. From donating frequently I was able to buy it for $16.20 using my 20% discount card. Every time you donate you receive a stamp on your card. Once it’s full they allow you to use it towards 20% off of a $20 or more purchase.  Luckily I found out that tip from a fellow blogger and it has saved me quite a bit of money.

100 room challenge teen boy bedroom jersey girl in the south

All of his “creations” can be displayed properly now instead of taking over his desk and anywhere else he could squeeze them in. I also purchased another storage piece for the room, these awesome old lockers. They were purchased from the store where I have my vendor booth for $25. I knew it put me over budget buying them but for the coolness factor it was totally worth it. He keeps his massive book collection inside.  His friend had him over to his house one afternoon and they painted this piece of art together. Perfect for my budget!!!

100 room challenge teen boy bedroom jersey girl in the south

Let’s talk budget.

Budget $100

Money Spent

Closet Lights $23.99

Paint and Supplies $32

Bedding set $13.49

Lamp $5.99

Desk Organizer $1

Lockers $25

Bookshelf $16.20

Money spent: $117.67

Sale of Lamps +$15

Money spent total $102.67

Overspent by $2.67

I think it was worth going over budget for this room! What do you think? This challenge has been so much fun and I can’t wait until the next one!

Teen Boy's Bedroom Makeover

Please visit my fellow bloggers that are participating in the $100 Room Challenge!

 

 


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Teen Boy’s Bedroom Makeover: $100 Room Challenge Week Four

100-Room-Challenge-Graphic

Welcome to week four of the $100 Room Challenge hosted by Erin of Lemons, Lavender and Laundry! Next week is reveal week! Woohoo! If you are not familiar with the challenge you can read about it here. For this month I am making over my teenage son’s bedroom. It’s in need of some major help, mostly of the cleaning variety! The before pictures can be seen in Week One , the closet makeover can be found in Week Two and the new paint was debuted in Week Three.

This week we worked on item #6 on my list, a functional desk area. Having a quiet and organized place to study is very important! Before I started the makeover the desk the desk was not being used at all. Instead it was covered in Lego builds and trash. Not exactly conducive to studying… Here is a horrifying before photo.

$100 room challenge makeover teen boy bedroom jersey girl in the south before

His desk was an afterthought and he never used it except to “clean up” by picking up stuff off of the floor to put on the desk. I don’t consider that cleaning… Plus the lamp was way too big and better suited for an end table instead of a desk. He had two of these lamps in his room so in order to purchase some new items I listed them on a Facebook Yard Sale Group selling them for $15. I am adding that sale to my budget.

And now for the finished result! The new lamp is from Target (from the inexpensive Room Essentials line) and is only $5.99. I was expecting to spend much more! The only other item that was purchased was the metal organizer from Dollar Tree. The desk was also relocated to a different corner of the room from where it has previously been.

$100 Room Challenge Teen Boy's bedroom makeover jersey girl in the south

Shopping the house really saved my budget this week! The letter board used to be in my vendor booth before I had a banner made. The letter J and Lego Architecture were buried among the previous disaster and the cork board was also reused from our old playroom. No, he has not seen the message on the letter board yet but I know he agrees. 😉 I’m sure he will have fun changing up the sayings.

$100 Room Challenge Teen Boy's bedroom makeover jersey girl in the south

Now he has no more excuses not to complete his homework with his new study space.

Let’s talk budget.

Budget $100

Money Spent

Closet Lights $23.99

Paint and Supplies $32

Bedding set $13.49

Lamp $5.99

Desk Organizer $1

Money spent: $76.47

Sale of Lamps +$15

Money Left to Spend $38.53

We still have a lot left to buy for storage and display shelves and not much money! Come back next week to see the full room reveal!

Please visit my fellow bloggers that are participating in the $100 Room Challenge!$100 Room Challenge Week Three Teen Boy's Bedroom Makeover jersey girl in the south


 

 

 

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Teen Boy’s Bedroom Makeover: $100 Room Challenge Week Three

100-Room-Challenge-Graphic

Welcome to week three of the $100 Room Challenge hosted by Erin of Lemons, Lavender and Laundry!  If you are not familiar with the challenge you can read about it here. For this month I am making over my teenage son’s bedroom. It’s in need of some major help, mostly of the cleaning variety! The before pictures can be seen in Week One and the closet makeover can be found in Week Two.

This week we decided to tackle painting! Although I am in love with the navy blue paint the bedroom originally had, Hale Navy by Benjamin Moore, it was just too dark for this space. Light and bright is what is needed! Here is a reminder of the before photo in all of its disgusting glory.

$100 room challenge makeover teen boy bedroom jersey girl in the south before

Three walls have been painted Revere Pewter by Benjamin Moore that I had color matched at Lowes. I do love Benjamin Moore’s line of paints and have used them many times but it is pricey. On a $100 budget it just wasn’t possible to use for this project. I was very impressed with the coverage of the Valspar Signature paint. Even though it took two coats of paint the navy was almost completely covered in one coat.

revere pewter benajmin moore

As I was rolling paint I realized there was no way that 1 gallon of paint was going to cover the entire room. Luckily I keep my leftover paint from other projects! I painted the wall behind my son’s bed with the leftover paint from the boy’s bathroom makeover. The color is Mark Twain Ombra Gray by Valspar and I think it compliments the Revere Pewter well.

100 room challenge teen boy bedroom jersey girl in the south

Even after a fresh coat of paint it’s still pretty disgusting in here but at least it’s brighter now! Instead of actually cleaning up like a normal person my son decided to push all of his furniture and junk into the center of the room when I told him to prep his room to be painted. I was not happy at all when I saw that but let it go since I had a warm day and needed to paint.

100 room challenge teen boy bedroom jersey girl in the south

He was told to clean up for the past day and half so that I could take my after pictures. Instead he has sat and reminisced over all of the junk he has found and discovered new things to tinker with. Watch for him on Hoarders in 2030. Being the mean mom that I am I took pictures anyway. Unfortunately it is snowing and so gray outside that the lighting proved challenging as well. Instead of using artificial light I wanted to show you how much brighter a room can be by just changing the wall color. It also looks so much bigger now even with the clutter and mess!

100 room challenge teen boy bedroom jersey girl in the south

New bedding was purchased this fall in anticipation of the makeover on 70% off clearance from Target. Instead of putting on the old bedding until the reveal he opened the new package. At least there are actually sheets on the bed now so I can’t complain too much!

I’m happy to have marked two items off our checklist from week one. Paint and new bedding. Let’s take a look at the budget.

Budget $100

Money Spent

Closet Lights $23.99

Paint and Supplies $32

Bedding set $13.49

Money Left to Spend $30.52

We still have a lot left to conquer and not much money!

Please visit my fellow bloggers that are participating in the $100 Room Challenge!


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Teen Boy’s Bedroom Makeover: $100 Room Challenge Week Two

$100 room challenge

This post contains affiliate links for your convenience.

Welcome to week two of the $100 Room Challenge hosted by Erin of Lemons, Lavender and Laundry!  If you are not familiar with the challenge you can read about it here. For this month I am making over my teenage son’s bedroom. It’s in need of some major help, mostly of the cleaning variety! The before pictures can be seen in Week One.

So when we left off last week my son’s room was a total disaster. I’m ashamed to say it got worse before it got better. He was told to empty his closet and then I would come up and help. I was not prepared for this!!!

Jersey Girl in the South Teen Boy's Bedroom makeover

I told him get some garbage bags and start cleaning! Well 6 kitchen garbage bags full of trash later I could actually walk into the room again. In his hoard he found binders from 4th grade, old school projects, boxes from Legos, broken hangers and clothes that were two sizes too small that he swore he didn’t have when I was looking for them to hand down to his brother. It’s amazing what you can find when you actually clean!!

Anyway, the closet was emptied and swept. I was dying from the dust but determined to get this done in one day. The closet is long and it is hard to see anything in the back. We decided some good lighting would really help but there are no fixtures in there. Instead of hiring an electrician we had to get creative. Amazon had these wireless lights with a remote that runs on batteries. Perfect!

Jersey Girl in the South Teen Boy's Bedroom makeover

 

They are nice and bright LED lights. He will have a much easier time finding his clothing now. What a difference! The remote mounted with double sided adhesive so no drilling was a big plus too! It took us all of 30 seconds to install them.

Jersey Girl in the South Teen Boy's Bedroom makeover
After we sorted through what actually needs to go into the closet we loaded everything in. Do you see what I see? Empty space!!! He can actually walk into the closet and reach what is in the back! We did not spend any other money this week. The shoe bin was already in the closet. His suitcase and sleeping bag fit perfectly on the shelf too and he had extra room in the back to store some of his robotics sets.

$100 Room Challenge teen boy's bedroom makeover jersey girl in the south

Jersey Girl in the South Teen Boy's Bedroom makeover

Please don’t mind the trim that obviously needs another coat of paint. The trim in this room was previously the brown that is in the rest of my house and it takes 3 coats of white to cover it. I only managed to have enough paint left when I did the navy to do two coats. Eventually it will get done. Probably years from now when he leaves for college but I am ok with that!

I saved the best part for last. The door can actually close now without a fight! It’s a miracle!

Jersey Girl in the South Teen Boy's Bedroom makeover

 

So let’s do a budget recap:

Budget $100

Money Spent $23.99

Money Left to Spend $76.01

If you would like to purchase the lights they are available through my affiliate link. It does not cost you anything extra and it helps to support my blog. Thanks!

We are supposed to get some warmer weather later this week and I’m hoping to get some painting done! Check back next Wednesday for more progress pictures. Please visit the other $100 room challenge participants below!


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Boys Farmhouse Bedroom Makeover $100 Room Challenge Week 5

100march

This post contains affiliate links for your convenience.

It’s week 5 of the $100 Room Challenge, the big reveal!!! Are you ready to see my boy’s new bedroom makeover? If you are not familiar with the challenge it was created by Erin of Lemons, Lavender and Laundry  You have $100 budget and one month to make over a space in your home. At the end of this post please visit the other challengers to see their final reveals! It has been so much fun following along every week with the progress photos.

If you are new to my blog you can find the before photos and previous week’s progress in these links.

Week One Week Two Week Three Week Four

For this challenge I took on my boy’s shared bedroom. I had several goals I was hoping to accomplish during this makeover.

  1. Add seating
  2. Change out the bedding for something easier to manage. Bunk beds are hard for kids to make themselves!
  3. Update the artwork
  4. Book storage
  5. Add character with a wood feature wall

Most of them were able to be completed exactly as planned. Number 5 was the exception. Unfortunately I am terrible at measuring and did not have enough leftover wood to complete that project. Instead of a wood feature wall I decided to do a chalkboard for the boys! I had leftover paint from the chalkboard wall in my kitchen so it was no additional expense. My husband cut 4 boards into 3 foot long pieces. Then I used the rest of the leftover red chalk paint from the bookcase project to paint them. I took our sweet little ducklings outside for a little time in the sun while I was painting. They are so curious and watched everything that I was doing!

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Now that the frame boards are finished drying it’s time to move inside. First I got out the level and traced out the size I wanted the chalkboard to be. I decided 3×3 would be perfect for that spot. Next using a foam brush I painted the outline of the chalkboard. Once that was done I used a paint roller to complete the chalkboard. After everything was nice and dry My husband framed it out for me using the nail gun and painted boards.

chalk

We hung a sign that I had made a few months ago for my hallway but never put up. Timber Trace Farmstead is the name my son chose when registering our Silver Fox Rabbits with the ARBA. We are no longer breeding rabbits and the parents have been sold but the name remains for our little farm. The boys are so excited to have a chalkboard in their bedroom and it will get so much use.

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Now for the room reveal! The before picture is pretty bad. What a mess!

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And the after! Ahhh, much better. Let’s hope they can keep their bedroom this clean on a regular basis!

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A fun little gallery wall is so much cuter! Originally I planned to use the vintage locker basket in my oldest son’s bedroom. I want to do an industrial modern makeover for him but he prefers his bedroom the way it is now. The basket looks great in here turned on it’s side as a shelf instead. It holds the boy’s trophies and a set of antlers.

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Nice neat bedding! No more sloppy blankets!

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We also decided to rearrange the furniture to change things up a bit. The boys will not be so crowded when they are taking clothes out of their dresser.

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This week I managed to only work with what I already owned. As a result I did not end up spending anything! The final numbers:

Budget $100

Money spent:

Knob $2.39

Bedding ($ 40×2) $80

Artwork license plate $2.52

8×10 prints (2) $7.98

American Flag pillows ($2.49×2) $4.98

Total spent: $97.87

Under budget by: $2.13!!!!

JERSEYGIRLINTHESOUTH.COM


 

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Boys Farmhouse Bedroom Makeover $100 Room Challenge Week 4

100march

It’s week 4 of the $100 Room Challenge. If you are not familiar with the challenge it was started by Erin of Lemons, Lavender and Laundry. You have one month and $100 budget to transform a space in your home. My plans and progress so far can be found on these links.

Week One Week Two Week Three

The plan was to cross off #5 on my list by adding some character with a wood accent wall this week. We completed our master bedroom makeover a few months back. My husband used wood planks to cover our dated textured ceiling. He overbought and neglected to return several packages of wooden planks. Sadly this is typical for us. Instead of letting it just sit around and collect dust I decided it needed to be used. The boys love my bedroom and said they needed a “cool wall” of their own.

This how my ceiling turned out. More on that makeover can be found here.

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Unfortunately the wall treatment did not happen this week. Once we got out all of the extra wood we realized it wasn’t going to be enough for the wall treatment we had planned. My husband suggested a trip to Lowe’s to buy one more package of wood. The cost is $15 per package.  Since I had $7 left in my $100 budget I was ok with going over by $8. It was still going to be an expensive makeover. Well that didn’t quite pan out. Lowe’s no longer sells that wood! Now we have to come up with a new game plan.

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I was trying to brainstorm ideas for the wall treatment so I told my husband we will complete it tomorrow. Then life happened. We had two kids come down with strep this week and I also have a bad cold. My plans got postponed to this upcoming weekend therefore no “in progress” pictures this week.

Since I still had $7 left and money burns a hole in my pocket I decided to buy these flag pillow covers on Amazon.

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There were two more items I found to add to the room that were free! I won the wooden buck head in an Instagram giveaway from Jars of Clay Co. Katie has so many cute farmhouse decor items in her shop. Take a peek! The antlers were another freebie from Cottage By The Bay Finds. I had purchased a vintage locker basket to use in my upcoming older son’s bedroom makeover. When I told her of my plans she sent me the antlers as a fun bonus. Wasn’t that sweet of her? They match the younger boy’s bedroom theme more so I am using them in here.

Here are my totals for the makeover so far!

Budget $100

Money spent so far:

Knob $2.39

Bedding ($40×2) $80

Artwork license plate $2.52

8×10 prints (2) $7.98

Pillow covers (2)  $4.98

Total spent: $97.87

Budget left to spend: $2.13

Boy's farmhouse bedroom makeover

Boy’s farmhouse bedroom makeover

Stay tuned for the final reveal next week!!! Visit my fellow bloggers in the challenge to see what creative ideas they had this week!

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Boys Farmhouse Bedroom Makeover $100 Room Challenge Week 3

100march

It’s week 3 of the $100 room challenge already. March is flying by! This week I was able to cross off goals 1 through 3 of my farmhouse style bedroom makeover. Yes I know it’s not in order since I completed goal 4 last week but that’s how we roll around here. If you are not familiar with the $100 Room Challenge before, it was created by Erin of Lemons, Lavender and Laundry. You choose a room to makeover in one month on a $100 budget. My progress and before pictures can be found here Week One Week Two

Now for this week’s details:

  1. Add seating. We had this fun blue camouflage/video game inspired print beanbag chair hanging around in my older son’s room and it sometimes lives in the playroom. The colors matched the boy’s bedroom and the price was right (free from shopping the house) so it was a perfect fit.

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2. New bedding. Where has Zipit bedding been all of my parenting life? It is so much easier for the kids to make their own beds now. Making their bed used to be so difficult and it always looked sloppy even when I helped. Now all they have to do is zip it up like a sleeping bag. So awesome!! Even better is that I found them on Wayfair on sale for $40. The retail price is $60! They can be found here. As of this posting the price went up $4 but it’s still an awesome deal!

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3. Update the artwork. This American flag framed art used to hang in my family room. Recently I replaced it with a mirror and planned to use it as a Fourth of July decoration instead. I think it goes along with the farmhouse theme so I let the boys have it. My youngest spotted this rather tacky John Deere license plate in Tractor Supply for $2.52 in the clearance aisle. Being the country boy that he is he HAD to have it so it went into the cart. After all it is their bedroom and I want them to love it.

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Originally these frames contained pictures from a country themed calendar. They were nice but kind of blah. I wanted something more colorful for the boy’s bedroom.

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Recently I took my youngest down to an antique tractor museum about an hour away from us. He was in love! I got some great shots and thought they would be really cute in their bedroom. They would also remind us of the fun outing we had. Reusing the IKEA frames is also saving me some money!

tractors

Budget $100

Money spent so far:

Knob $2.39

Bedding ($40×2) $80

Artwork license plate $2.52

8×10 prints at Walgreens (2) $7.98

Budget left to spend: $7.11

Boy's Farmhouse Bedroom makeover week 3

Boy’s Farmhouse Bedroom makeover week 3

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Boys Farmhouse Bedroom Makeover: $100 Room Challenge Week 2

 

It’s week 2 of the $100 room challenge by Lemons, Lavender and Laundry. Last week I introduced you to my boy’s bedroom. This week I am having fun with a little chalk paint. I have some big makeover plans for a more functional bedroom. The post can be found here.

100march

 

I was able to cross off item #4 (book storage) this week. We had this bookcase in my older son’s closet that is from the same furniture set as the dresser. There are some scratches and dings which is not surprising since I purchased the furniture set in 2008 for my older and middle son when they briefly shared a bedroom at our last house. Sharing a room did not last long so I lost my crafting room to separate them. It was worth the sacrifice not to listen to the fighting! This is why the middle and youngest share now (we only have 3 bedrooms upstairs) instead of them despite the 5 year age difference.

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I had leftover chalk paint from my red dresser makeover that was completed a few months ago. The chalk paint I used is Americana Decor in Romance. Soft varnish was used as a protective coating. My blue dresser in the foyer was painted using the same steps. That post can be found here.

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The knob is the same one that was used on the dresser. Hobby Lobby has the best selection of knobs! I purchased it using a 40% off coupon bringing it down to $2.39.

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First I cleaned the bookcase well. Second I started painting with chalk paint. I love that there is no sanding or other prep work involved. Projects can be completed so much faster! I like to pour out some paint onto a paper plate or bowl instead of dipping in the jar.

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I quickly paint and then go back and drag the foam brush the full length of the surface in one smooth line. That will remove any brush strokes. Sometimes I like the look of brush strokes and will use a real paint brush. My preference is foam brushes. Foam leaves a nice finish and since they are so cheap I don’t feel guilty throwing them away. Perfect for lazy people like myself.

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Normally I would do two coats of chalk paint but since I wanted a little wood grain to show through like the dresser I only did one coat. This bookcase did not receive any distressing but a little sandpaper or a sanding block could be used to rough up the edges if that is the look you are going for. When I started painting it was nice and bright out but a rain storm rolled in and it got dark quickly! The overhead lights had to go on making it harder for me to see! I like to paint in natural light so I get a better end result.

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Once the paint was fully dry I went over it with a coat of Americana Decor Soft Varnish. The varnish protects the chalk paint from chipping off. This product is clear and does not change the color of the chalk paint. Other waxes can be used if you wanted an antiqued look.

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Budget $100

Money spent so far: Knob $2.39

Budget left to spend: $97.61

Stay tuned to see what I accomplish next week! The final results will be posted at the end of the month. This challenge has been so much fun!

Farmhouse style boys bedroom makeover

Farmhouse style boys bedroom makeover


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DIY Farmhouse Style Gallery Wall

Farmhouse Style Gallery Wall

Farmhouse Style Gallery Wall

I love the look of gallery walls and have had one in every home. I started out in our first home in NJ with our wedding pictures but now it’s all based on the kids (like every other aspect of our lives.)  Unfortunately I did not have a large spot to hang photos downstairs so I decided to use the upstairs hallway. We have a large wall at the top of our stairs next to the laundry room. I used a mix of heavy gold frames we had from our old house when I first hung everything up after we moved in last year. We had a french country look going on in our previous house and had these for many years. I quickly threw it together and it was a “good enough” project instead of something that I loved.

A few weeks ago I got bored of looking at the ornate frames. They did not match the farmhouse style we have in the rest of our home. Normally I would try to update them with chalk paint but instead I donated the frames and went shopping for new ones. Well, except for one unfortunate frame. That one made it into the trash instead…I tried to straighten the lopsided picture to take a good “before” picture and ended up knocking one off of the wall….Oops. The broken glass scraped up the picture so I was not very happy with my clumbsy myself. (Stuff like this tends to happen at least once a week. At least no one was injured this time.) One frame also had the boy’s picture sliding down on the inside. I left that one alone so as not to have another casualty.

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Here is the before shot. The big open space on the top left was our wedding toast picture.

before GW

 

I tend to like gallery walls that are not just pictures since I feel it makes the display more interesting.  The black key and the painting were the only items that we reused. Everything else was either borrowed from other rooms or purchased. I always like to shop the house first before spending any money. If you know me personally you know that I am constantly changing and rearranging things. My husband is not a huge fan of this habit since I often make him help.

I found some great new frames with more of a farmhouse look along with some new signs. The blessed sign was purchased as a digital download off of Etsy from Sweet Meadow Market. It can be found here. https://www.etsy.com/shop/sweetmeadowmarket. The family sign, “quotes” sign, letter S, number 5, black key , Enjoy Today sign, and wooden picture frames are all from Hobby Lobby. The blue chippy frames are from Michael’s and the clothespin frames are from Kirkland.

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It’s a fun way to display your favorite photos. To create your own gallery wall you can follow these easy steps:

  • Find frames that coordinate with each other. It is not  necessary to be matchy/matchy. They can all be the same frame if you like but I prefer more of an eclectic look.
  • Use paper (old wrapping paper, tissue paper, whatever you have laying around is fine) to recreate the size of your wall space
  • Arrange your frames and other objects on the floor on top of your paper to find your desirable pattern for the wall
  • Trace the frames and mark exactly where the hangers and hooks are located on your paper with a pencil
  • Using painter’s tape hang your paper on the wall.
  • Use nails and picture hangers in the marked spot where each one goes
  • Pull the paper off and hang your art
  • Stand back and admire your work

I will be honest and tell you that all of the frames sat on the floor leaning against the wall for almost a month. I just couldn’t make up my mind how I wanted to arrange everything. It’s not a good idea to make a ton of holes in the wall and not love something so it’s best to wait if you are not sure. Not that I would know that from past experience or anything…

An easy way to create your own is by using a pattern. Pinterest is full of ideas! I have several pinned on my Farmhouse Style Family Room board. https://www.pinterest.com/jerseygirlinthe/farmhouse-style-family-room/

 

This is the before and after. Much better!

gw

 

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How we get ready to head back to school and our daily routine!

Back to school routine and checklist

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The bus driving away on the middle one’s first day of Kindergarten a few years ago! So many tears!

 

It’s almost time for school to start!!! Two weeks from tomorrow is our first day, not that I’m counting down or anything. 😉 The big one is going into 6th grade, the middle one into 3rd grade and the little one will be in his first year of preschool. I would be lying if I said I was not ecstatic to finally have some alone time three mornings a week. Three boys can be exhausting!  Target here I come!!! All kidding aside I will miss them but I am excited they will meet new friends and enjoy a new year of school.

We start preparing for back to school in late July/early August. I made a to do list (type A people love their lists!) so I do not miss anything.

  • Try on clothing and shoes to see what still fits. Anything stained or in poor condition gets thrown away. Clothes that are too small get packed up for hand me downs. We generally start off the school year with brand new sneakers as my kids tend to trash theirs over the summer.   I also make a list (shocker I know) of what quantities and colors of new clothes we need to purchase. This is the perfect time for spring/summer clothing shopping as most stores have it on clearance. I normally wait until later to buy heavier clothing as it’s warm down here through October unless I see a great deal. Most stores have back to school sales. I also shop for winter clearance in the spring and buy a size or two up from their current size.
  • Print out the school calendar and mark down important dates. I am old school and still use a paper calendar in addition to my cellphone calendar. The boys like being able to see what we have coming up too so this works for us. I also inform my husband of what days I need him to be home from school early for things like teacher conferences, back to school night, etc.
  • Set up a drop zone for backpacks and school papers. If you are lucky enough to have a mudroom that’s the perfect spot or you can set up a space near your entryway. For organizing papers I have the Thirty One Hang Up Home organizer (that is no longer sold) hanging inside of our pantry door. You may be able to find one on Ebay or second hand. Each child has a pocket for their important papers and the fourth pocket is for family papers. Another idea is to create your own command center. I have several pinned on my Organize Your Space Pinterest board.
  • Go through the school supplies that got returned at the end of last year. See what can be salvaged and toss the rest. I realize some people do this at the end of the school year but I am so over school at that point and put it off. I also check backpacks and lunch boxes to make sure they are in good enough condition to use again the following year. If not, new ones go on the school shopping list.
  • Start checking the sales flyers for school supply deals. In VA we get an extensive list of supplies that need to be brought into meet the teacher day. Pencils, crayons, glue, notebooks, scissors, markers, etc. I tend to shop at Office Max for their spend $5 get xyz for 1 cent or 25 cent deals. We have one close by and I stop in there before my weekly Target trip in the summer to get my goodies. At the end of August whatever has not been found at a bargain price is purchased at Target. (5% Redcard discount!)
  • Schedule back to school hair cuts early! If you don’t you will be waiting in life forever at the salon with a walk in appointment. I made that mistake once. Never again!
  • If your kids are not on a sleep routine that resembles the school schedule start transitioning them back a few days/weeks early. I only increase bedtime by 30 minutes in the summer so this one is pretty easy for us. They only stay up late if we have friends over or we are out somewhere special. If my kids do not get enough sleep they are nasty and it’s not fun for anyone (especially me…)
  • If your child brings a bag lunch to school this is a great time to look for new recipes and lunch container ideas. My kids get bored eating the same thing every day. Pinterest is the perfect place for this! I have a kids and family board with plenty of ideas.  Unfortunately school bought lunch is not an option for us as we are a food allergy family. My kid’s allergies are not top 8 and can often be hidden in food. It’s safer and easier for everyone this way. Bento boxes are perfect for children who like a large variety at lunch time. My favorites are divided all in one containers as linked below and Rubbermaid Lunch Blox containers. Our schools also have the children bring a snack and a bottle of water. My kids tend to bring a main meal (sandwich, leftovers, salad, etc), a piece of fruit, a cheese stick or Babybel, yogurt tube, a cracker/carby type of snack and veggies with or without dip. We keep everything organized in bins in the “snack cabinet” or drawers in the fridge so we just need to grab something as we assemble lunches in the morning. To save time this can be done the night before. My kids swear their sandwiches don’t taste the same if I make them at night.

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  • Establish your morning and evening routine. Ours has changed many times over the years depending on grade and the schools they attended. We used to do homework immediately after school but changed that as the kids got older. They wanted some down time after school so we adjusted it. Currently this is a typical school day for us. Times change depending on weather and before/after school activities.

Before school:

6am or earlier-The big one wakes up, gets in the shower and gets dressed.

6:20am-I wake up and make sure the big one is awake and showering. Hit snooze. At 6:30 I force myself to get up and head downstairs to make lunches and breakfast. Big one has breakfast. Two younger ones wake up sometime between 6-7am, come in my bedroom, fall back to sleep or watch tv and stay out of big one’s way. He is like his mother and not a happy morning person.

6:45am-The older kids go out to feed the rabbits.

7:00am-The big one heads to the bus. The two younger ones and I sit down to eat breakfast.

7:20am-The two younger ones get dressed and brush teeth. The little one is not always compliant and likes to stay in pj’s if we are staying home.

7:30-8:30am-Electronics time for the middle one. The boys get 1 hour per day on school days and he chooses to use his in the morning. The little one uses the iPad so I can take a shower and get ready for the day.

8:30am-The middle one gets on the bus and I start the rest of my day.

After school:

3:30pm-The big one gets off of the bus and eats a snack.

3:45pm-The big one has his 1 hour of electronics time. He likes to do it at this time to decompress and have a break after a long day at school. I start cooking dinner/prepping food depending on what we are eating.

4:45pm-The middle one gets off of the bus. The older two go out to clean rabbit cages and take care of chickens. They play outside weather permitting.

5:30pm-Dinner time.

6pm-Homework time. Backpacks get emptied. Any papers to be signed and reviewed are given to me. Homework is to be completed. Lunch box gets emptied and put away for next day.

After homework is completed they can do whatever they want as long as it’s not electronics unless they have not used their time for the day.

7:15pm-Two younger boys shower and get ready for bed. Clothes are set out for the next day. (I do this myself to make sure they match and are weather appropriate. They come up with some “interesting” combos. No one believes me that navy and black do not go together). Then we watch a tv show.

8pm-Bedtime. The big one will read for an hour before he falls asleep. The two younger ones are usually exhausted and crash.

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What is your school routine? Do you have any helpful hints that I may have left out?









 

 

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