Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Month in Review and No-Spend July

Anyone else wondering where HALF the year went?? Can you believe it’s almost July? That’s nuts! I mean, I’ll be thinking about fall in just two weeks months! ;)

Since the end of the month is here, yet again I’m recapping the last 30 days of projects just in case you missed one of them! I’m adding a little somethin’ from now on too – if I haven’t answered a question you have about one of the June projects, please leave me the question in the comments and I’ll be sure to answer you there.

I started off the month by sharing what our Nutter, Nut Butt, Crazy Dog – our cute little Peanut, has been up to:

chihuahua rat terrier

He looks so innocent.

Thanks SO much for all of the advice about our sweet, crazy dog. :) Many suggested crate training and we’ve been doing that since day one. I’m afraid we  have a non-trainable dog, at least when it comes to his business. If you know what I’m sayin.

Is there such a thing as a dog that can’t be potty trained? If so, we sure have one. ;)

I don’t know if I mentioned this, but Peanut can go ALL night, like 11 hours straight, without having to go. So that is AWESOME. I have a feeling the “light bulb” just hasn’t gone off in his head yet about the rest of the day. I’m hoping anyway!

Some of you had some great ideas so we’re persevering!

At the June Before and After Party, I shared how I started out the guest room redo – with bedding as my inspiration:

grey green bedding

LOVE it! Thank you to reader Emily for sharing the name of the bedding on Facebook – the brand is Hillcrest and the print is called Santorini. I found a comforter set for sale on Ebay here if you are interested!

Next up, a simple door painting project turned into my biggest DIY disaster ever. It involved broken glass. LOTS OF BROKEN GLASS:

black french door

I love how it turned out…I mean LUUURVE. it. So it was worth the hole in the house. I think.

I shared the ways I deal with the bad feelings blogging brings on and how I keep blogging FUN in the next post:

This post resonated with so many of you and I’m so glad!

We searched and searched for new outdoor furniture and finally found a fantastic deal at Sears:

sears outdoor set

So far we are loving it! It’s so nice to have a table set out there again. And the weather has been awesome this summer (so far), so we’re actually using it!

I made some progress on the never ending project that is my office:

board and batten

The board and batten is caulked and puttied and ready for paint! (Whoo.) I showed you the how-to on prepping the molding here!

Next I shared my piling problem:


I’m a piler. And a bagger. And I loved hearing from all of you who are too!! I loved reading those comments, they had me rolling! We are NOT alone people! ;)

I’ve made some changes to our master bedroom since last fall and shared the progress here:

four poster bed

It’s our comfy sanctuary and I love how it’s coming together!

I shared Kristi of Addicted 2 Decorating in this month’s Show Her Off post. This recent project of hers is one of my favorites:

upholstered wall

Wow, I just love it!

If you haven’t been to Garden Ridge, you’re missing out!:

garden ridge pillows

I shared some of the goodies from my last trip here. Some of you mentioned your local GR isn’t as good lately, and I’ve noticed some changes in ours too. Thankfully they still have a great selection. (I’m a sucker for their outdoor stuff!)

And finally, I showed you how I’m teaching myself to sew (again). It’s been a couple of years since I’ve touched a sewing machine and if feels good to be creating with it again:

striped ikea fabric pillow

My sewing skills are as basic as it gets and I’m still figuring it out – I KNOW you can too! :)

That’s the month of June all wrapped up in one post for y’all! I’m kind of excited about next month’s projects because I’ve created a little challenge for myself.

I’m determined to not spend a DIME on any DIY or decor projects for the whole month of July. Over the past few months I’ve realized how long my to-do list has gotten, and I’m determined to catch up.

So I’m challenging myself to get them done without spending any money. These won’t be free projects mind you, because there are some I have the supplies for and I just haven’t gotten to completing them. (I’ll probably have a few True Value posts thrown in there too.) But I think it will be fun to try to get creative and try to make things work with what I have on hand.

So for the month of July the posts probably won’t be as in depth – some of them may be brief, how-to kind of posts. But I also hope to post a little more than usual too. We’ll see how that goes. It is summer and I tend to turn into a sloth during the warmer months. ;)

I think it’s going to be fun – but I think I may go through HomeGoods withdrawal people. Nah, really -- I’m not there that much. I just tell you every time I have been there so it seems like I am. Or something like that.  ;)

If you have any questions specific to the June projects, leave them in the comments!


  1. Well when you put it like that, half a year is gone, you just make me feel that much older!:)Your pup is still adorable as ever! I'm glad your door ended up working out. That was a scary post to read!

  2. You have had a busy month! And as always I have loved it all!

    I am really loving watching your house evolve again. I feel like I watched it get to its first life and now I am watching it be reborn.

    LOVE IT!

  3. And I am in TOTAL denial about the whole July thing!

  4. Yes, there is such thing as a dog who can't be trained, because we have one! LOL I honestly think small dogs are harder to potty train.

  5. Several of my recent projects have been made with stuff I already own. I have a whole craft room full of stuff, for sure! I'm not sure that I won't spend any money in July as we are having our house painted, but surely I can do a lot more projects with what I already have!

  6. Cesar Milan says, "I train dogs and rehabilitate people." He likely would agree that you are tolerating Peanut's "going" and that you should assume your role as pack leader.

    I recommend "Smarter Than You Think." Great advice in there!

  7. When I was eight my dad got me the cutest, itty bitty black poodle the world has ever seen. I named her Happy and that little cutie saw me through thick and thin for many, many years. Unfortunately (for my mom) it took over 2 years to house break her. This was before the crate method was popular and I seriously doubt even that would have worked. So yes, there ARE dogs that are difficult to potty train. Hope you find a solution soon. Good luck! :)

    p.s. I don't post often but I just gotta' tell ya' I love your blog.

  8. Hang in there with Peanut. Most puppies don't understand the potty training till 5 months. Some are great earlier but I've found little boy puppies think its fun to you have to wait out their peeing for fun. Everything I've read says their bladders really aren't capable of being counted on till 5 months.

    Now that Violet was super easy to housetrain. Harvey and Newman totally loved to pee as little boys and were more difficult and then there is Sally...she is IMPOSSIBLE! I still can't trust her and she is 5! I think because I didn't have her when she was little. I got her at about a year and a half and she came with all kinds of bad habits.

    But I have full confidence that your Peanut will catch on.

  9. You are one busy blogger! It's such a great idea to look back and recap your month. You know, little dogs are sometimes harder to "potty train." It was definitely the case with our first Pom, Emma.

    Are you going to host the Before & After party on the 4th, or will it be another time?

  10. Peanut is part chihuahua, right? I can't remember...... anyway, chihuahua's (and lots of small dogs) are notoriously difficult to potty train, like super hard. : ) My sister's puppy didn't really get it until he was about 18 months. Just be consistent, and keep doing what you are doing, and he'll eventually get it! He is such a cutie!

  11. I want to see the new couch!!!

  12. I'm going a whole year with out buying anything new and you can go a whole month with out buying anything! It will go buy faster than you think and you'll surprise yourself with how creative you get! good luck and enjoy it!

  13. I've been fostering a former puppy mill puppy who is determined to mark EVERYTHING! We have tried just about everything to stop him, but now he wears "belly bands" when he's running around the house unsupervised. You can google it or email me if you want to know how to make your own. Not the ideal solution, but belly bands let me have a pee-free house.

  14. Hi there!
    I love the idea of a "no-spend" month! (and I think my husband and bank account would love it as well:)

    Isn't it amazing how much it can cost to do "money-saving" diy projects around the house!

    I just might take up the challenge with you! Thanks for the inspiration!

    -Adriane @

  15. We have an untrainable dog, too! Crate training didn't work for us at all since he also has a taste for poop (so gross!). So going where he was laying was never a problem for him.

    My potty-training advice is this: take him out every 2 hours, no matter what (if he can make it through the night, exclude the night). Keep him outside until he goes and then celebrate like crazy. Tons of praise, and some treats. Make sure you feed on a schedule and not just leave food in the bowl all day. It will help give him a schedule for #2 which helps you know when he's going to need to go.

    If he does have accidents in the house, cleaning up properly is the best thing you can do to help him. Dogs have amazing noses and can smell that kind of stuff very easily, even when it's cleaned up. Make sure you're using a special cleaner for pet messes, like Nature's Miracle.

    Our other dog responded really well to the bell on the door, as well. She would never cry to go out, but she'd ring the bell after she started to associate the ringing with going outside. You could also try that.

    Good luck! I love your blog!

  16. I applaud your no spend in July pledge. It does feel good to catch up and use what you have so focus on that feeling. I plan on trying it sometime....later.

  17. I'm in the same spot. SO many projects I need to complete with supplies I've already purchased. Maybe I'll officially start my collage wall this weekend... We'll see I guess!

  18. Great month and great plan for July - I try to tell myself I have to finish projects I've bought stuff for and do dreary things like touch up the paint nicks in my house before I can buy something's a good thing:)

  19. Keep the faith when it comes to the little Nutter Butter. We adopted a puppy a little over a year ago, and we have the HARDEST time house training him (I heard its a terrible thing to do with small bread dogs) and right after he turned one it was like a light bulb went off in his head. He has now gone 4 weeks with only ONE accident (and it was totally My fault - I wasn't paying attention when he said he needed to go out) It was like a light bulb when off in his head and he just GOT it. Now we have to break him of the chewing and he will be the PERFECT dog.

  20. I'd love to know more about the bookcases you used as nightstands in your master bedroom. I've been considering doing the same thing!

  21. I'm the worst at lengthening my to-do list yet never completing a project. I wish there was a pill I could take to fix that. I would even be happy if it came in liquid form.

  22. And July will include a picture of the living room with the new couch right??? I check every day for that post about the new couch.

    and, my dog is 4 and is not potty trained either. I like to think that he's just not trainable rather than I'm not a good puppy mommy . . . you decide.

  23. I love the idea of a spend free fact I love it so much I did it a few months ago (in March). I had the best time and was the most creative I have been in a long time.
    Here is where my month started Full of Great Ideas spend free month

    Keep hope for the is frustrating but well worth the commitment.

    Good luck and can't wait to see what you come up with.
    Stephanie at Full of Great Ideas

  24. I'm crazy in love with your little doggie. That's a little face you could cover with kisses. I'm glad he has a loving, wonderful family to grow up in. I so enjoy your blog each day. Your decorating ideas and advice is always great and your writing is so funny. Thanks a bunch!!

  25. I can't believe it's going to be JULY!!!!! That is cray-zay! The Hob Lob has Christmas ornaments already! A spend free month sounds like a nice challenge - I'd have to take it a week at a time :) Maybe I'll give it a try in August since I'll be so busy getting the kids back into the school routine ;)

  26. I like the idea of a no spend July and I think I am with you! There are so many projects and purchases piled up that I need to get through them without continuing to buy more!

  27. I had a dog with the SAME problem. His turned out to be anxiety issues and crating him during the day was torment for him (I videotaped it to see how he handled it). In the end, he was on human prozac (yes, human form) that I paid 30.00 for a 90 day supply through the vet. And, we put him in a diaper. A female dog menstrating diaper worked. We found if his privates weren't exposed, he didn't want to pee in what he had to wear all day long. They also make belly bands for boy dogs.

  28. Your couch called. She wants everyone to see her!

  29. I love me doggah as much as you love yours. Unfortunately my little pooch-a-roo also likes to potty in the house (specifically on carpeted areas only). I recently decided to pre-mix up my steam cleaner solution in a waterbottle with a squeeze top. I put in in the cupboard, and when the doggah goes wee-wee, I squeeze solution on the spot and then throw rags on it,and do a twisty dance move and then I can steam clean at the end of the day, or when I have time during the day.

    p.s. Dying to see sofa...please, pretty please

  30. I just LOVE reading your blog. I live in Biloxi.... so I googled Garden Ridge.... not one even close to me! Poo..... well.... the hubster had to go work some sort of airforce plane "mishap" (I'm not allowed to know what all he does... but he said while he was working on this "mishap" it was just like CSI, minus the pretty women) at Maxwell AFB in Montgomery AL. Sooooo I went with him to Montgomery this past Monday. Tuesday was my birthday, so I dropped him off at the safety office and headed north to Birmingham where there is a Garden Ridge (about 70 miles). I arrived at GR at around 9:30 (it took me longer than expected because my navigation system wanted to take me down a road that no longer existed. .... so after driving through a residential neighborhood for about 20 minutes, I FINALLY found the place!

    I walked in and spent the next 3 1/2 hours just wandering up and down EVERY aisle. Yes.... I'm a geek! I drive a new Taurus (it's red and just the prettiest car EVER), which has an amazing trunk, but I knew we would have to make it home with our luggage too.... so I had to practice some restraint. I fell in love with several pieces that I would love to get AFTER we get our deck built.... but for now I managed to get LOADS of stuff for less than $200. It was the perfect way for a decorating geek like me to spend my birthday! I was able to get everything in the car and we still had room for our luggage, but it's a good thing it was just the two of us traveling. So.... thanks.... for the birthday fun!!!!

    Oh.... speaking of Birthday.... the hubster got me the most beautiful Janome sewing machine. I haven't sewn in years, but I've been wanting to make some curtains and that sort of thing! I couldn't help but think of you when I opened my present. You know... it's funny.... you have no idea who I am, but for some strange reason.... I feel like I know you.... I was all excited that we would be working on projects "together." Seriously.... I'm not a stalker.... well, not in the traditional sense... just in the blog world!

    Thanks again for the birthday fun!


  31. I went on a spending freeze in May and it was really good for me! However, I feel like I made up for it with my June spending. Perhaps I should join you and just start a routine of spend one month, not spend the next to even things out throughout the year!

  32. Ok, here is a tip that is a bit (ok, a lot) tedious. Our silkie terrier was IMPOSSIBLE to potty train...and he'll still go if I lock him in the kitchen (he's like WHOA! headstrong!!!) but it worked on the real potty training issue. Put the handle of his leash through his collar. Then clip the clip part of the leash to you (your buckle loop works well), then the pup will go EVERYWHERE YOU GO for about a week or 2. You'll begin to notice his peepee signs. My dog gets this wide eyed look..."Hey MOM! I gotta go pee RIGHT NOW!" You'll stop him before he acts and correct the behavior BEFORE he pees on the floor. It's much easier to correct that than it is to correct it after the fact. PLUS, as an added bonus, he can't chew his momma's shoes, or his bub's toys. Worked really well for us even it was a ROYAL pain! Of course, my dog has a major personality flaw...when he's not in the same room as us, he gets MAD and will pee on purpose. Lovely. Drives me bonkers but what's a girl to do? I mean this little guy LOVES my daughter to pieces...otherwise, he'd be gone!

    Love the new sectional! And love the idea of not spending money in July...I have LOTS of projects I need to work on so that's *mostly* the plan here too. Although, I am wondering about those floral pillows and where they came from? I'm looking for some like that or like the ones at Ikea without the drive to Ikea. :D I just recently got an amazing hand-me-down leather sofa in dark brown but only have UGLY colonial Williamsburg blue wingback chairs to go with it. AND, since the hubs is in the navy and we've recently had some amazing pictures done in RED, WHITE and BLUE, I want to incorporate those colors without going all Americana 1990's in the living room. Added to that is the fact that we have some *retired* naval charts (like as in real ones from a ship the hubs retired) that I want to frame...I think a floral would be a nice touch...with just a bit of red, white and blue.

  33. I love that DIY thingy! And those folwers are beautiful. I thought they were artificial at first. I really am in awe of your talent and look forward to your project posting.

  34. Ok, about Peanut. He is soooo cute. And on the potty training it took us a year to train Molly, we rescued her and she was probably already a year old and the same goes for Jake. It took a while on him also because he knew nothing about potty training. So hang in there!!


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If you have a specific question I will do my best to answer you back here! Be sure to check out the FAQs tab at the top of the site and my Projects page for paint colors and DIY projects as well.

THANKS so much for reading!