Sunday, September 29, 2013

Repurpose Old Crib Spring

What do you do when you have an old drop down side crib, that cannot be handed down to anyone, or resold, as they're illegal?

Do what I did, Repurpose it!

Today's post is, what I did with the spring at the bottom of the crib! Not the prettiest thing around, but with a clean and fresh coat of paint, you have something new and useful.

First I cleaned the springed frame, then using Rust-Oleum Universal Hammered in Black, from Walmart, I spray painted it, giving it a total of two coats, leaving it dry in between coats!

And that was it. SUPER EASY, unlike the other three projects, I made with the remaining crib pieces.

Click on the links, to see how:


Saturday, September 28, 2013

Your Missed Mam - Happy Birthday

I miss my mother everyday, she was an exceptional person one who had many trials in life, but with grace, strength and faith in her Savior, Jesus Christ, she lived life to the full.

Today would have been her birthday. Happy Birthday mam, I love you and miss you dearly.

Mam & Dad
  My daughter Jodi & My Mam

Friday, September 27, 2013

My Writing - The Bluebell Hotel

I'm not a professional writer, I'm a budding writer and I'd love to hear back from you, my readers on what you thought of this piece of writing. Try and ignore silly flaws in grammar, I'm still unclogging the cobwebs from my 'mommy brain'. Lol.


The Bluebell Hotel.
Edited June 2014

From the time, Dani had left her lavish four bedroom apartment in upstate New York, till she arrived at, The Bluebell Hotel, her journey had been quite the ordeal. From the crazy cab driver, who picked her up and drove her to the airport, then finding out from the departure monitors that her flight had been delayed 2 hours! And rather than sit in the overcrowded waiting areas, she'd decided to stroll around the duty free stores, and when she'd finally boarded the plane, she sat, sighed, a sigh of relief to find the seat next to hers was unoccupied. She closed her eyes, expecting to have a peaceful flight.
But her peace and quiet only lasted for ten minutes. When Dani had felt the seat next to her began to shake, then a thud and a stale, and overwhelming smell invaded her nostrils. An unpleasant smell of, strong body odor! She'd opened her eyes and came face to face with an oversized, unkempt bearded man. He smiled, nodded at Dani, she rolled her eyes, gave him a fake little smile, then turned her head away. Yet, to top it off, not only did the man smell, he snored for most of the flight, making it hard for Dani to relax for even a second.
The Taxi cab eventually rumbled to a stop outside the Bluebell Hotel, and a sneaky yawn crept its way out from Dani's mouth, she rubbed her dry eyes and peered out of the dusty window. Her first impression of the Hotel, was how much it looked exactly like it's pictures online.
The Bluebell stood three stories high, it was an old Colonial home, painted pale yellow, surrounded by old oak trees with their creaking branches swishing in the breeze. There were neatly trimmed pink myrtle bushes intermingled with the trees, rich green ivy crept up its walls clinging to the weathered window shutters, making it look as if the ivy was holding the aged shutters in place. In front of the hotel, covering the flower beds like a fluffy blue shag carpet, where the most beautiful clusters of bluebells, that Dani had ever seen.
She could see why they choose the name, 'Bluebell' for the hotel, such a pretty name for a picturesque country hotel. Her stomach did a little flip at the excitement of staying three blissful days and with one quick pull handle she opened the cab door, and stepped out onto the gravel driveway. Taking in a deep breath, then exhaling, allowing the sweet scent of bluebells to wash over her. It made a nice change from body odor and grime. In the distance, Dani could hear the faint sounds of waves crashing onto rocks, taking in another breath, the smell of sand and sea mingled together in the breeze, brushed over her face reminding her of a time in her life when everything was fun and simple, where she had no worries or deadlines to meet. Dani hoped that even though her schedule was full while she was here, she'd might be able to squeeze a little time to go enjoy the local beach. Looking at the beautiful surroundings, she took a minute, relaxed and allowed the warmth of rays from the setting sun, to warm her tired body.
Disturbing the blissful sound of nature, the cab driver called out, "Good luck." He set Dani's luggage on the gravel, held out his hand and said, "That will be $80."
Dani glanced over her shoulder at the cab driver, her eyes bore straight at him, her moment of peace disturbed again! She delved into her purse, handed him a wad of twenty dollar bills and asked, “What do you mean, Good Luck?”
Stepping into his drivers side of the taxi, he answered, “You'll see.” He slammed his door and drove off.
Dani shrugged off the unusual comment and turned her gaze, at the hotel and smiled. With her new Prada purse on her arm and pulling pristine Prada suitcase's behind her, she treads up the five well worn steps, to the main door. A beautiful custom made wood door, with stained glass windows above it detailing bluebells. Grabbing the door handle, Dani pressed down the black latch and opened the door, and walked into the entryway of the hotel. Sliding her sunglasses back onto her head and couldn't believe what she saw... The inside did not match the outside.
I've stepped back in time, she thought. It reminded her, of an old fashioned retirement home. The walls were a wash of flowery rose patterned wallpaper and in parts, it had even begun to peel off, revealing dark moldy water marks. Looking upward she saw an ugly, large, rusty globe light, that resembled a high school mirrored ball, minus the mirrors! In one of the corners close to the entrance, there was a stack of wood, ugly chipped floor tiles and a bunch of grubby, dirty tools propped up against the wall.
She looked over to the staircase, which in the online description said,'Grand', no longer looked grand, it didn't even splendid. Dani scrunched her eyes and she was able to see glimpses of dark oak peeking through the hideous faded rose colored carpet, which covered whole flight of stairs. It's banisters were painted a dull rose pink to match, "what a crying shame," Dani mumbled. She took in her surroundings, and her body ached in protest, a yawn crept upon her. She needed to sleep, so not wanting to deal with yet another long journey to find other suitable surroundings, she decided to stay and give the Bluebell Hotel, the benefit of the doubt.
Making her way over to the only beautiful piece in the foyer, Dani pay much attention to to the flooring, when she tripped on a patch of upturned carpet and wobbled. Her arms spread wide, trying to steady herself, her purse flew off her arm and shot across the foyer, and for a split second, Dani's stomach did a flip at the thought of falling onto the dirty, ugly carpet and ruining her expensive clothes. But luckily, she didn't. Quickly recovering, she huffed and mumbled, “Argh...No, I'm going stay. Surely it can't be that bad, can it?” With a quick glance she was glad no-one had seen her very non lady like trip, she gingerly walked across the hallway and picked purse up off the carpet, as if nothing had happened. When she walked back towards the reception desk, she was amazed how exquisite its wood was. It was the deepest wood stain she'd ever come across and what amazed her the most, were its intricate carvings of bluebells, vines and butterflies. This must have taken hours to get details such as these, she thought as her fingertips gently brushed over them.
When she looked up, she saw sitting on the reception counter was a torn piece of cardboard, with the words scribbled across it Back in five minutes. Dani stood there, eyebrows raised, eyes wide, what terrible service, she thought. Ten minutes later, Dani's feet throbbed, glancing around, she saw a pink and blue plaid chair by the large bay window. Deciding she'd rather sit than stand for one second more, she headed over and sat down. A large puff of dust flew up around her making her profusely cough.
Dipping her hand into her purse, Dani pulled out a water bottle, unscrewed the lid and took a long swig, allowing the cool water to soothe her dry, dusty throat. And set the bottle on the rickety coffee table next to the chair. Checking her watch again, Dani shook her head in disbelief, five minutes had turned into thirty! Her fingertips drummed on the arm of the chair, as she wondered if anyone would show up. Just as Dani was about to dial for a cab, a well, tanned guy leisurely walked into the foyer, chugging a bottle of water. Dani noticed his clothes were stained with mud and oil. I hope he's not staying here, she thought as she watched him make his way over to the reception desk. But to her amazement he didn't wait in front of the desk, he stood behind it! Dani stood and marched over to give the guy, a piece of her mind.
It's about ti...”
Not waiting for Dani to finish her sentence, Ty nodded his head and said, “Hello Ma'am, welcome to the Bluebell Hotel.”
Hand on her hip, the other hand shaking her cell phone at him, Dani answered, “Firstly, I don't appreciate being cut off mid sentence and second, I especially don't like to be kept waiting.”
Ty set his bottle down, “Sorry Ma’am, I didn't realize we had guests staying this weekend. I was out helping a...”
Her breathing quickened, her palms sweaty, “That is not my problem! Someone should of been here to greet me or any paying guest, come to that.”
Ty, wiped his hand on the edge of his shirt, leaving a damp mark to add to the oil stains already there. He tidied the papers that were strewn across the top, and looked squarely at Dani smiled and answered, “Yes, Ma'am. Sorry to have kept you waiting.”
She jammed her cell in her purse and said, “I have a room booked and I would like to check in please.”
Yes Ma'am, your name, please?”
Danielle Stoke.”
Ty picked up the guest book, turned to the next relevant page, "Well... I can't see anything to confirm your reservation, I..."
Dani leaned forward, "Look, Ty.. Is it? I made the reservation online, the payment already went through, check again."
Ty looked up, cleared his throat, "I understand your frustration, Ma'am, I'm sorry for the mix up. I think we must be having problems with the computer system again," he turned around, took a key off the keyboard, “I'll take your word, here is your key." Ty handed over the key, “Room 20, it's on the third floor, Ma'am.”
The key was an old-fashioned black key heavy and big and it reminded Dani of something from a movie set, “Thank you. What time is breakfast?”
Ty scratched his forehead, took another swig of water and answered, “Eight o'clock, Ma'am.”
My name is, Danielle, not Ma'am and I'd appreciate a courtesy wake up call at 7am.” She snapped back.
Ty smiled, “Sure, Ma'...” Ty corrected himself, "Miss. Stoke.”
Dani picked up her suitcases and headed over to the elevator, her feet throbbed in annoyance... Her new Prada shoes looked great, but now they only hindered her feet more. Just as she was about to press the button, Ty called out, “Sorry, Miss. Stoke, the elevator isn't working, you'll have to take the stairs.”
Huh? Really.” Dani muttered under her breath, “Typical.”
Wiping the newly formed droplets of sweat off his brow with his sleeve, Ty called out, “Do you want me to carry your bags upstairs for you?”
Dani just stared at him in disbelief. There was no way she would let him, a dirty, scruffy too-bit goodness knows who, carry her two thousand dollar Prada luggage set, not with his grubby hands, "No thank you."
If you say so.” Ty shook his head, thinking to himself, what a stuck up, little miss know it all. He grabbed his bottle of water and made his way over to the main door, picked up the tools off the floor and headed out the door.
Dani walked over to the staircase and everywhere her eyes roamed, she saw more flowers! Underfoot was the ugly, dull, worn carpet, more walls that held pictures of roses set in ugly brownish black frames, and either side of the bottom of the stairs, sat freshly potted African violets, at least something looks cheerful and welcoming, she mused. Looking up at the main staircase, she sighed at the unwelcome circumstances, and determinedly began the hike upstairs to the third floor.
Beads of sweat trickled down her brow and her breathing rapid, she stepped up on the last step and sighed. Her feet ached even more and she was sure that they would continue to give her grief even after she would take her shoes off. She set her luggage down for a minute, and mentally taking note to never pack so much clothes next time. With a much needed deep breath in, Dani picked up her luggage and strolled down the hallway. The one thing that kept her from yelling out in frustration and tiredness, was the thought of collapsing on a welcoming bed, then enjoying a very relaxing warm bath... With bubbles.
"Finally." Dani muttered as she found her door, placing the key into the lock, she turned the key and pushed down on the door handle... Nothing! “What the heck! Come on you stupid door... Open!” Dani yelled. She tried one more time, she turned the key, jiggled the handle, but it still wouldn't open. Taking the key out, she looked at the tiny tag, “That dumb guy told me the wrong door number.” Dani glanced around to see where room 23 was. It was at the very end of the hallway!
Dani limped towards number 23, her feet, a dark pink swollen mess! Lifting the key up to the lock, she turned it, pushed down on the handle and the door slowly creaked open, “Oh, thank the heavens.” Walking into the bedroom, Dani let out an exasperated sigh, “More flowered walls!” She headed further inside the room, and was welcomed by a stark white unfinished room, the wallpaper was the same as downstairs, ugly and peeling. Dead bugs were dotted all over the threadbare carpet, hanging above the bed, were fake yellow and pink ugly flowers, with layers of dust. Next to the bed sat a shabby brown bedside table with a 1920's telephone sitting on top of it and if that wasn't bad enough... The bed had no bedding, but an abundance of different colored stains!
THIS IS NOT ACCEPTABLE!” Dani stormed over to the on-suite bathroom to check that out. Opening the door there were more stark blank white walls, an old club foot bath, that had seen better days, a toilet that no longer owned its seat and lid, with thick layers of disgusting black gunk around the toilet bowl!
Dani cringed.
She dared herself, to turn the faucet on... Carefully leaning over the edge of the bath, she twisted the cold water knob.... At first no water came, then came some loud clanking noises, and out chugged icky brown sludge!
Eww, so disgusting. This will not do at all!” Dani turned off the faucet and made her way to the bedside table, stared at the dusty black candlestick rotary phone, then picked up the receiver and dialed zero. “Hello,” no response. “Hello, is anyone there?” Finally... She heard breathing and then a gargled cough, on the other end, “Hi. This is, Danielle Stoke from room 23, the state of this room is deplorable. How can you expect me to stay here in this mess.”
A woman's voice, old and creaky answered, “Sorry, who is this?”
Danielle Stoke. I just checked in, I'm in room 23 and I would like a full refund.”
Oh, Really?”
Dani drummed her fingers on the base of the phone, her heart began to race, all she wanted was to take a bath, then sleep. Was that too much to ask! Now, she was being held up by a woman whom she'd never met or spoke to before, “If you don't mind, I would like to speak with, Ty. He checked me in, less than twenty minutes ago.”
Oh, I see. I'm sorry about this Mrs. Stoke...
Dani replied sharply, “Miss, not Mrs.”
Letting out a rattled cough, Betsy replied, “Miss. Stoke, I'm Betsy,” she coughed. “I'm sorry but, Ty shouldn't have checked you into that room.”
Looking at the board and picked up the right key, “I apologize, it looks like Ty gave you the wrong room key by mistake, room 23 you're in, is in need of some repair and I forgot to tell him, we had any guests this weekend.”
Oh... You don't say.” Dani huffed.
Room 20 is ready, for you. I'll bring the key up.”
I should think so... Oh, and for future reference, maybe you should make sure the right person is at the reception desk from now on.”
Betsy cleared her throat and replied, “Maybe you're right, Miss. Stoke.”

Copyright 2013 Freckles. All Rights Reserved.


Follow Up - Cough Remedy

As I promised, albeit a little late, here is my follow up on me using the homemade cough remedy.

From using it the very first time, It helped.... Yes I know, it sounds cliche but it did work.
I kept  using the cough mixture 3 times a day, for the next two days and my  opinion, 

It Works!! Yep it works. The hoarseness went away, the annoying tickling you sometimes get with a sore throat also went away :) and I didn't even have to use any OTC medicines or Tylenol.

So if you're like me and prefer the Natural way of healing then check my original Cough Remedy Post HERE

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Justin Timberlake & Jimmy Fallon Skit

I came across this link - It's a skit with Jimmy Fallon & Justin Timberlake, from Late Night With Jimmy Fallon.

Great Skit!

Justin Timberlake Shows Us How Dumb We Sound When We Use Hashtags


My Darling Granddaughters

How adorable are my two granddaughters..
Hannah..with the gorgeous shocking red hair, she will be 1 in November and then Paisley who is coming up to 3 mths who has the cutest expressions xx
Just adorable x

Today's walk.

So this past week, I have been trying to be better at getting more exercise, so I have been taking the girls for long walks along the woodland/lake trails.

And every time we are out we always see an abundance of gray squirrels!  Much to the girls' delight.  Today we were really close to one and Carys held out her hands to try and get it.. But much to her frustration being in the stroller we just took a picture instead.

Along our walk we saw quite a few speed boats and fishing boats and a lone rower on Lake Mendota, Seren who had a caring personality called out, "be careful."

When we reached Raymers Cove, Seren & Carys were a lot more adventurous today and yes...... Wanted to get their feet wet.. Although in Carys situation as she bent down to pick up rocks to throw in, her whole back of her skirt and diaper got soaking wet! the walk back she sat in the stroller, bare bottomed and wrapped in a blanket lol lol

All in all a wonderful walk.

The rower looks as if he is wearing nothing! - But he was wearing beige shorts

My Cute Daughters x

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Refurbished Antique Window Shutters

 The week we moved to Madison, WI, I passed by an antique shop, called Janets Antiques, on my way to Target and I promised myself to stop by one day, which I did, four weeks later.

What a beautiful store and I found the sweetest small Antique Window Shutters, for the bargain price of $30 ! Now I did like the original color, but the shutters were in need of major cleaning and sanding, and some of the slats would not budge.

So I set wo work on cleaning and painstakingly scraping off old paint, once I did that I let the shutters completely dry out. While they dried in the sun, I mixed my paints to get a lovely sage green. You can see I used a vanilla, green and blue, mixing in equal parts with a little water to thin it out as I didn't want a thick coverage, more of a light wash color.

First I watered down my vanilla and painted the shutters in that and let it dry. Next I used the green paint mix and I gave the shutters two coats of paint, letting them dry between coats.

You can see the finished color in this picture, I even painted over the hinges and hook.

Here comes the fun part, making it look old and weathered. Again my trusted steel wool and light grade sanding paper. The shutter on the left, is after I sanded, the one on the right was next. It's not a huge difference, but enough to see the color underneath peeking through.

All that there was left to do was hang a D-Ring hook on the back and give it a coat of Minwax Paste Finishing Wax.

Their new home, my kitchen.


Monday, September 23, 2013

Hugh Jackman in the Movie 'Prisoners'

I posted about this movie a little while back saying I wanted to see it, So Jason and I went to see 'Prisoners' over the weekend.





Well what can I say about it, other than, TENSE THRILLER!! Even though it was a movie of a slower pace, not like Jackman's, Wolverine. Hugh Jackman made his character, very believable, playing the distraught father, in search of his missing child, making us as the viewer all the more drawn into his actions, that had huge consequences. Jake Gyllenhaal's acting was on point, even down to the twitching eyes, he played the role of the detective in charge of finding the missing girls.

All the other supporting cast, played convincing roles too, making it quite an intense movie. It does have swearing and violence, why it's R rated.

As a mother and parent, this movie hits home!!! What would it be like to go through something as devastating as having your child kidnapped. I don't ever want to find out, and for those in life who has something like that has happened to them, my heart goes out to you.

Here is the promo trailer :


Sunday, September 22, 2013

Downton Abbey

So If I was still living in Wales- Great Britian, I would be getting ready, with a bowl of ice cream or Cadburys dairy Milk Chocolate bar & all curled up on the sofa.. Ready to watch.... Downton Abbey!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

But Ugh not fair, here in the USA we  have to wait until January 5th 2014 to watch it on PBS Masterpiece Theatre. I'm so jealous lol.... So all you Brits, no spoilers please !! Lol

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Pallet Shelves

So, I have been wanting to try my crafty hand at making reclaimed Pallets Shelves, for quite sometime. Before we moved, I  had started the project, and now I have finally finished them. I love how they have turned out!

To start I found some old dirt encrusted pallets at a local builders site, I stopped & asked if I could have one - yes came the reply.. So off I went and carried the very heavy, loaded with dried on dirt pallet into my car...and let me say this...NOT 1 guy offered to help, they just watched me move it by myself!! For shame.. Lol.

TIP: MAKE SURE YOUR PALLETS ARE HT, not the MB kind. HT is HEAT TREATED. You don't want MB- Chemical Treated ones !!! They should be stamped on the actual pallet. So check before taking.

Next came to clean the muck off, and get to work. I decided where I wanted to cut to make two shelves, then get out my jigsaw and made my cuts. Be careful , with any of the rusted nails. To pound them out with a hammer or pull using a set of pliers.

Then came the sanding took some time to get the pallets nice and smooth, but it's worth taking the time. 

I bought some Minwax Ebony wood stain, then gave the two newly cut shelves one coat each and left them to dry. You can see the difference! What a gorgeous color. 

Then using some paints I mixed to get the color I wanted, I painted just one pallet. And let it dry. 

Once dried I got my sander back out and sanded both pallets around the edges to give giving it the worn shabby look I wanted. The last thing I did was to hang 3 D-Rings on the pallets and hang them.

 I  absolutely love how they turned out. So keep your eyes open at builders sites for old pallets and get to chopping and painting, see what you can make!


Friday, September 20, 2013

Check out the Promo Video's - Vampire Diaries & The Originals


So can I say – I'm excited..

I'm Excited!!
 Woo-hoo check out the promo's for
Vampire Diaries & The Originals.
Both will air on Oct 3rd on CW.

Double Vampire shows, what a deadly night of watching with baited breath as we Watch Silas/Stefan evolves and weave his evil plan. See how Damon & Elena handle their relationship. Toss in College, dead Bonnie, Resurrected Jeremy, Caroline and the now human Katherine...only time will tell what will happen.

The Originals, well we have Klaus, Elijah, Rebekah, who return to New Orleans, to reclaim what was once theirs, from Marcel who now has Control over the humans and supernatural inhabitants. This I'm Excited to watch to see what story lines come about and maybe do Crossovers with The Vampire Diaries, just as the TV shows, Buffy & Angel did.

So for 13 days left, lets twiddle our fingers and thumbs, eat chocolate and wait with baited and maybe watch the promo's to get geared up :)


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Old vs New.

Before we moved I did  quite a bit of revamps using our old stuff. Now I am finally getting around to posting How. I started with our bedside lamps and our living room lamp.

This is what they look like now.
(Scroll down to see how I revamped them)

Living Room Lamp.

 Our Bedroom Table Side Lamps


 With the Living Room Shade was Simple: First I paid a visit to the Local DI store in Utah, purchased a $3, lamp shade ( I already had the base) Went looking for nice material, as well as the Modge Podge which I purchased from Hobby Lobby

 The next stage was to cut out the fabric to fit the shade, then taking the best glue ever lol.. Modge Podge, I simply glued it onto the shade, stretching as I went. I used clothes pegs to hold the ends in place (Opps again forgot to take pictures of that stage). Now as you can see it didn't go on as straight as I would have liked !! But on the finished piece you can see I made the flowers, using the same fabric to disguise my mistake... But I actually like how it's turned out.

To Make the flowers: Take a scrap of your left over material, thread and needle and you sew a 'gathering stitch' till you reach the end. Next you fold and twist the fabric and make a flower. I glued it on using, Modge Pogde and stuck long sewing pins to hold them in place while it dried.. And Viola !!


How they looked before minus the edging.

 So for this I ripped off the OLD shade material, till all you have left is the wire frame. I traced around side of the shade using paper to get a pattern, Then I followed around it adding and 1/2 overlap to have room to glue. I did the same for each side. Next I pinned each side together and did a dry fit to see how much I needed to adjust it. I quickly sewed it together then turned it the right way out. Once I fitted onto the wire shade frame I neatly fold the corners and then glued it using Modge Podge them down inside so it covered the frame. I did the same with the bottom and again using cheap and simple clothes pegs I pegged the edges while it dried. I used the same process to make the same for the turquoise lamp,

Finished Bedside Lamps

With the base of the turqiouse lamp, all I did was to spray paint it, let it dry, then using steel wool, rub the paint off in areas, giving it the distressed shabby chic look.


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