Life Love Larson: November 2012


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Carpet Spot Remover

I want to blog about more products that I use in everyday life.  I love when other bloggers post about products, or clothes, or deals, or makeup, or anything else they love!  I love a good recommendation!
We have very light carpet upstairs in the bedrooms.  Not white, but more of a soft cream color.  I was worried about choosing such light carpet, but I love that it keeps the house light and fresh with our light walls.  I asked the project manager on our build what he recommends for carpet spot treatments (ask the experts a lot of questions-you will be amazed at what you can find out).  He recommended Spot Shot.  You can buy it at Walmart, Target, etc.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Funfetti Cake Batter Buddies

I made these fun treats for Kate’s preschool birthday celebration.  I used a recipe found at Six Sister’s Stuff.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Family Fun on Facebook

A big thank you to Family Fun Magazine (on Facebook) for featuring the Fabric Backpack Embellishment I made for Kate’s backpack earlier this year.

“Like” Family Fun on Facebook to get more great ideas!

If you missed it, you can check out the post and tutorial on the fabric backpack embellishment here!


The embellishment is still on Kate’s backpack and looks as good as the day I put it on!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Happy Birthday, Kate! ♥

My youngest turns four today and she thinks she is just so big!  Excuse me while I gush and wipe away a little tear.  :)  We have loved watching Kate grow into a sweet, sassy, mature little girl.  I like to say she is 4 going on 16!


We didn’t find out the gender with either of our kids until they were born.  We were sure Kate was going to be another boy as my pregnancies were so similar and I carried the same, etc.  When our doctor held up our baby and shouted “It’s a Girl!”, we were in absolute shock.  Good shock.  Wonderful shock.  So fun to have a little girl and so fun to see Steve squirm a little bit (he only has brothers)! 

She has Steve’s heart.  She loves to snack.  She is fun loving and quick witted like her daddy.  She is smart beyond her years.  She loves playing dress up and mothering her dolls.  She loves to help mom around the house.  She cares about what she wears and how her hair is done (gasp!).  She loves gymnastics and dance and can’t wait to be a cheerleader.  Things come quickly for her (good and bad!).  She has an unbelievable bond with her brother.  She keeps us on our toes.  She has a contagious belly laugh.  She is Kate Elizabeth (aka Bunny), age 4.

image via Pinterest

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Happy Weekend

We have a few several projects to get done this weekend around the Larson household.  The list includes:  hanging curtains in Drew’s room, recovering Drew’s upholstered headboard, getting the first coat of paint done in the guest bathroom (I went with Simply White), straightening out the garage, planning Kate’s birthday party details, getting a Thanksgiving menu in order, sifting through the Christmas decorations, and starting on a DIY tree skirt.  It sounds like the perfect weekend for this DIYer, and a not-so-perfect weekend for my handy hubby who will be enlisted to help!!

And we will definitely be squeezing in some outdoor time as we are soaking up every minute of these 60 degree temps… in November… in Kansas!!!

Don’t forget to enter the JavaHook Giveaway and take advantage of the free shipping code!  These would be such great gifts for coworkers, stocking stuffers, or for the someone who has everything.  I know you are reading, so please ENTER!!


Wishing you a happy and productive weekend!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Our Back Door is Black

The back door that leads to our covered patio is right off the kitchen eating area.  We have light paint, creamy white trim, and lots of windows at the back of our house.  I felt that space needed a little contrast, so I painted the interior (and exterior) door in semi gloss black.  The back door is mostly uncovered glass, so really just the trim of the door is black.  Even that small amount of black has totally changed the space! 

Monday, November 12, 2012

Thankful Tree

I knew I wanted to make a Thankful Tree when I kept seeing cute images of them on Pinterest.  The kids and I quickly pulled this together with branches (free), some scrapbook paper ($1), and some yarn (already had on hand).  Kind of a fun little reminder of all the things we have to be thankful for…and yes, toys reluctantly made the list…they insisted…

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Ten on Ten: November 2012

Take 10 pictures on the 10th of the month to capture life’s beauty in the day to day. Linking up at A Bit of Sunshine, the original inspiration!

ten on ten button

Steve is out of town this weekend, so the kids and I have just been hanging out.  We had a 70 degree day, so we made an early morning dog park visit with Samson.


Trying to decide on the perfect white to paint our downstairs bath.


I took advantage of the nice day and cut back all my flowers for winter.


A little Jersey Mike’s for lunch never hurt anyone!


This isn’t my favorite place, but it is necessary! :)


A little indoor swimming for the kids…


Mommy, “Those clouds look like mountains!”


It was a fun mail day…I love mail…


One of the more glamorous highlights of my day…cleaning the oven door!


Made tomato bacon cups to take over to a neighbors house…they were a hit!


Hope your November has been great!  Happy Veteran’s Day!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Perfect White?

After living in our house for about 10 months, I have finally gotten the itch to repaint a space.  We were able to choose two paint colors before moving in, a main color and an accent color.  The downstairs bath, the dining room, the laundry room, and the master bedroom all have the accent color, a smokey blue/grey. 

While I love this color, I am really starting to dislike it in our downstairs bath.  This is a 3/4 bath, so it serves as a main floor bathroom as well as a space for our overnight guests to shower and get ready.  The blue/grey looks dark in this bathroom because it gets zero natural light.  I want crisp and clean and bright and modern, so I am going for white.  Yep, never thought I would ever paint a space white, but I’m doing it! 


White is white, right?  WRONG!  So many whites have yellow, pink, or grey undertones.  I am looking for a true white, but nothing too sterile.  My trim color is more of a creamier white, and I do not want the white paint to blend in with the trim.


The same whites pop up when you do your research and when I asked the guy at Sherwin Williams to tell me which whites were the most popular, he pretty much circled every single white in the book!  My two favorites are Cloud White and Simply White (BM).

Once I get the room painted, I am hoping I will like this furniture piece a little better.  This is so not me or my taste, but it came with the house and it is actually a nice piece of furniture.  It provides functional storage for when we have guests come to stay, which is often. 


The wood color is all wrong for me, it is way too ornate, and it has a black granite top, which shows every single water spot. However, I am not ready to replace it or paint it at this point, so I am hoping some fresh white paint on the walls will modernize it a bit. You can see I have already tried with the black/white rug! 

I am headed out today to pick up the two white paint samples shown above.  I will keep you posted on the progress as it happens!  Also hoping to add some fresh artwork, a new rug, and possibly removing the doors on this furniture piece and skirting it with fun fabric.  Wish me luck!

Friday, November 9, 2012


I wanted to add just a few homemade Thanksgiving touches to our home this year since we are hosting my husband’s family (and the house seems quite bare after taking down the Halloween decorations).

Using free printables found on Pinterest, and with things I already had laying around, this cute little bunting now adorns our mantle.





You can find the free printables here.  I printed the letters on white cardstock and bordered them with kraft paper.  The letters are held up with twine and clothespins.  I have a lot of black and white in my house, so these letters fit right in! 

My sister also made a bunting and sent me a picture (yes, we plan ahead and usually do the same things)!  I love the two layers and how they pop off of her dark fireplace.

photo (2)

I have one other little DIY craft to show you next week, and will also be doing a little giveaway!  Have a great weekend!

Linking up with:

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Twelve Months of Giving Back: October

Steve’s employer started a fund to help support employee recovery from Hurricane Sandy in the New York, Long Island, New Jersey, and Southern Connecticut areas.  We have donated money to help assist fellow employees in this area recover from the devastation. 

There are several ways to donate…

The kids also decided when they went to the dentist last month that they were going to donate some of their Halloween candy.  The dentist accepts candy donations and then they ship them overseas to the troops.  My kids thought this was a really cool idea and had no issues getting rid of about half of their candy!  Win/win if you ask me!


Next month will be the last month in this series, as I started last December.  We will continue to keep donating every month, but I won’t be blogging about it.  I have to tell you it has kept me honest in getting things done.  Funny how a little blog holds me accountable for so many things!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

DIY Sunburst Mirror (made with wood shims)

I made and blogged about a DIY sunburst mirror when we lived in San Antonio (16 months ago).  At that time, I still had not hung the mirror.  I was going to hang it in our dining room that I was painting, but we got the call to move before I had the chance.  During the move, a few of the wood shims came apart and it didn’t look as fresh as when I first made it.
So……………………..I decided to take it all apart and redo it a few weeks ago.  Much like the first time around, construction of this mirror can be done during nap time (which for me has turned into “quiet time”)!
I did a few things differently this time around.  I staggered the shims more at the ends and I added a Danish Oil finish to the wood.  I did not add any more shims or a new mirror.  I simply reused the same materials and had to purchase the Danish Oil (around $8 from Lowe’s).
I hot glued the shims to the craft forms and to each other.  You can see the ends are a little more staggered than the first time around.  Once the shims were glued, I took it to the garage and added 3 coats of Danish Oil.  I wanted to keep the natural look of the wood, but I wanted it to look a little more finished and saturated.

FYI: I applied the Danish Oil with an old cloth.  Once the shims dried, I brought it back inside (this thing is huge, so be careful in transport) to add a hanging mechanism.  Steve drilled this into the larger of the two craft forms.

Once this was done, I just needed to reattach the mirror.  I was able to remove the mirror from the last time I made one, scraped the wood glue from the back, and reused it.  I used hot glue to attach the shims, but I used wood glue to attach the mirror to the shims.  Just eyeball the center, glue, and stick.  You will want to put some heavy items on the mirror and let dry overnight.
I wanted to hang this on the first floor of our house because it is just so striking, but I don’t have a lot of wall space (lots of windows and open concept).  When I painted the chalkboard wall, I took down the large cabinet door chalkboard, and that left open a space on a wall in our eating area (and I moved the $5 side table underneath it).
I just love how bold and big it is, and love how it brings a large natural element to the space.  We do not use the mirror to look at ourselves, purely decorative! 
Finally, after 16 months, we are enjoying the sunburst mirror! :)
Linking up with:
Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Quick Trip

My sister and I packed up all four kids (ages 5, 4, 3, 2) and headed on a little road trip to Chicago this past weekend.  Between soccer, preschool, dance, swim lessons, gymnastics, etc., it is hard to get away anymore.  We managed to squeeze in a few days in Chicago and it was such a fun time. We were packed in!


We ate too much…


My sister and I had a 4 hour shopping excursion at IKEA (while Gma & Gpa watched the kids).  When you don’t live near one, it’s fun to go stock up!  We pretty much ended up with all the same things, but we don’t live in the same state, so we think it’s okay!  :)


The kids always love to wait for Papa to get off the Metra.  Certain things you just don’t get in KS & IA!


Now, I will spend the rest of the day catching up on laundry, getting to-do’s organized, and tackling this pile…


Oh, and don’t forget to vote!  I remember four years ago Steve and I waited in line for 2.5 hours with a 14 month old (Drew), and I was 8 months pregnant with Kate (in SC).  Today, I managed to vote while the kids were in preschool and had no line (in KS).  Boy how things change in 4 years!

I was thinking that I have been a registered voter in IL, FL, NC, SC, TX (twice), and KS since I have been old enough to vote.  Makes me wonder where we will be in 2016!  Can’t wait to watch the coverage tonight!


Hope you are having a great week so far!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Halloween 2012

We had a successful night of trick-or-treating…














And then midnight came, and I had a child that was not only coughing, she was barking.  Needless to say, we did not get very much sleep…


Steroids and antibiotics should hopefully do the trick!  Hope your festivities were fun!  I have taken down all Halloween items………………………………..can you say over it?!  :)  The kids and I are heading out on a little road trip with my sister and her kids for a few days, so see you back here next week!

A big thank you to Lil’ Luna blog for featuring my Dining Room Progress, and as always, thanks for reading and commenting and following along!