Thursday, January 31, 2013

Random Act of Kindness #64

Oh my word! Oh my word! Oh my word!...Are these not the most adorable things ever?! Guess what their mission in life is? To be a service dog. Isn't that the best? They're not only adorable but one day, when they grow up they're going to work hard and help children with disabilities.

 
4 Paws for Ability

Service dogs are trained to help numerous different disabilities. Did you know they can even aid people with autism, seizures and diabetes?

Patriot Paws Service Dogs

Dogs trained with Patriot Paws are partnered with disabled veterans. They help do more than you realize. Just look at what they're capable of:

  • Get help in emergencies
  • Recognize and avert PTSD episodes
  • Pick up and retrieve items
  • Open and close doors
  • Pull wheelchairs
  • Provide bracing to stand, walk, and sit down
  • Help with chores, such as laundry
  • Take off shoes and socks

These incredible facts lead me to today's RAK challenge...


 
I hope you'll take the time to click on the links and read about these amazing programs. Both 4 Paws for Ability and Patriot Paws could use your help. 


I have a friend whose nephew is autistic and will be getting his service dog soon. I was astounded when I learned of the cost involved in training these heros. Do you know how much it costs to train a dog and its owner? Anywhere from $10,000 to $17,000. Holy smokes!

Monetary donations are not the only way you can help! Puppies can be donated to the programs. You can foster a dog in training. You can donate supplies. You can become a sponsor. You can encourage your company to become a corporate sponsor. So many ways, friends!

You know the drill...go out and be kind!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Split art

I have the art itch. You know, the throw back to your kindergarten days of "I need to play with paint and brushes," feeling? This is what's on my mind...split art.





In my mind's eye this piece of art has a little something to do with the upcoming lovely holiday, a bit of abstractness and a tad of white space. Can you see it? I'm off to paint...let's hope it's worthy to share in a future post. Finger's crossed!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Secret weapon to curbing sweets

Raise your hand if you've ever felt like my friend, Mr. Pug...
Okay, if your hand is not high up in the air then I'm calling your bluff. We've all felt this way, and each time I let myself indulge to this point, I find myself wondering, "Why, oh why?!"

Sweets are totally my downfall. Recently, I've found myself "needing" something sweet after every meal and it's really starting to bug me.

So, I've decided to finally do something about this "need" and show this "need" who's boss. Want to know my secret? It's amazing and it's free...water. Yep, you read that right, h2o.

While perusing the pages of pinterest I read a tip that recommended drinking a full glass of water before every meal. I thought, "Well, that doesn't seem too hard!" And,  honestly, I needed to increase my water intake anyway, so I decided to give it a try. 

I'm happy to report it's been over a week and I've successfully visited the bathroom every 10 minutes followed my water rule. It does the trick! I immediately feel more full before sitting down to eat, therefore, don't "need" something extra after the meal.

It's win/win. I've increased something my body needed and decreased something my body didn't need.

Want to know my other secret?  The Tervis Tumbler.


I have a few of the 24 oz. cups and use these wide straws. 

Monster straws help you suck down your water faster so you can get on to the good stuff...food!

Any of you tried the water trick?

Monday, January 28, 2013

Carts and Trays under $100

Hello, friends. I hope your weekend was wonderful and you're settling in quickly to the start of this week. Did you find time to shop? This must be the week to launch spring lines in stores because last week the shelves were bare! But...that means good sales, right?

Let's look at a few little steals and deals I stumbled upon...

3. World Market, $103.99 (ok, it's a tad over $100)

Trays and carts are the perfect little accessory to use to add interest to your space. 
Sometimes trays seem small standing alone, but you can solve this problem by simply placing it in front of a mirror.

Don't get stuck thinking a bar cart can only be used in your dining room. This is a great solution for bathrooms with pedestal sinks.

Bar cart turned nightstand. Love it!

We all have a corner in our house that seems like it needs something but you're just not sure what. Well, try a tray. It might just be what that space has been waiting for!

Don't forget to shop Goodwill and garage sales for this little treasures. They're a dime a dozen and worth every penny.


Friday, January 25, 2013

Paint Selection made easy...My new best friend!

Ahh man, I missed the weekly Random Act of Kindness post! I hope that didn't give you an excuse to not spread a little kindness yesterday. I'm sure it didn't...you guys don't need me to hold your hand, you're totally kind even without my ideas!

Yesterday I was busy working on a kitchen design from a recent consultation and ran across the most amazing tool. It's so good that I absolutely have to share.

I spent lots of time flipping through paint colors, creating the perfect palette, then stumbled upon the Cambria site. Did you know they have a Paint Match Tool? This thing is my new best friend, I tell ya!

Here's how it works...
Rummage through the beautiful quartz selections and click on the box of the one you like. As soon as you click it, suddenly 4 paint colors appear that coordinate perfectly. Could it get any easier? Are they trying to put me out of a job? Maybe, but it also cuts down on my legwork so I'll forgive them this time.  ;)

Here's a visual...


Even if you're not using quartz, I'm sure you could find a similar sample that imitates your granite and still come away with a few suggestions. I love it because it pulled up several Benjamin Moore colors that are new to me. I was excited to file them away in my "pretty colors" idea box for a future date.

So, go play with Cambria's Paint Match Tool and see how much time you can waste, how you'll get sucked right in, I mean, what a great resource it is!

Be happy this weekend, friends.

(This totally sounds like a sponsored post, but it's not!)

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Food Art

I've shared with you before that I'm helping my father-in-law decorate his office building. He challenged me to come up with a way to bring a fresh and more contemporary feel to their space. He owns restaurants and they're wanting to change their image to reflect a healthy lifestyle.

It seemed logical to use images of fresh produce so I did a little digging. I came up with some great prints from Etsy shop owner, Tony Laidig.



 
Photos available at Light Dream Photography.

Instead of framing his beautiful works of art, I've decided to hang them in a less traditional way. Hence, bringing in the contemporary element. It'll look a bit like this...

Ikeas sells curtain wire that even comes with clips attached for a mere $12.99. Perfect! 

I'll be installing this soon. I'll try to grab a few shots to show you guys the finished product.

Don't you think these prints would be a great addition in a kitchen, too?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

You are a soul



Let's take a minute and think about this quote. What if we looked at people from this perspective? What if we saw them the way God sees them instead of the way the world sees them? Would there be less judging? Would you be more likely to lend a helping hand?

Our physical bodies put many limitations on us via mental limitations. Our brains are crazy awesome tools but sadly, often we let these tools work against us instead of for us.

I want to challenge you today, friends. Go through your day today and look at the souls of those around you. The coworker who drives you crazy on a daily basis, the kid who's been mean to your child, the homeless person standing on the corner. Look beyond the obvious and see them as an amazing individual that God created. Celebrate them the way God wants us to. Think you can do it? It won't be easy, but you can!

On a much lighter note, if you're curious how our DIY snow was yesterday..."It was awesome!" exclaimed Reed. Both kids invited friends over and made a complete mess out of our driveway but had a blast doing so!
My bribe helpful suggestion to get the kids to clean without complaining, worked like a charm!

Monday, January 21, 2013

When you live in Austin you have to DIY snow

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day. My kiddos are out of school and I think we're going to celebrate this wonderful holiday by cleaning the house. Poor Frieling kids! Why did they get stuck with such a boring mom? If they're lucky and clean without complaining, I may just slip in a little fun. Look at this funness I found on pinterest yesterday...
A smart mom would do this BEFORE cleaning the house, right? ha!

I'll let you know how it goes. 

Friday, January 18, 2013

I don't take baths...

but I might start if I had something like this to soak in. Okay, let's set the record straight. I don't take baths but I do shower often. Aren't you relieved to know that?

I've had freestanding tubs on my mind recently. I like to watch Sarah Richardson's design shows and I've noticed a trend in her bathroom remodels. She typically uses gorgeous tubs.

I've not had the pleasure of using one of these beauties in a remodel just yet but I decided to do the research so I'll be prepared when the time comes. 
Know what research showed me? There's a reason I haven't had the pleasure of using a freestanding tub just yet. Yeah, something to the tune of over a thousand dollars each reason! And that's on the low end of the spectrum. Doesn't quite fit into my budget-friendly decorating philosophy.

But they sure are pretty...
{via}
They also make a huge statement. Take a minute to check out those legs and appreciate the custom color.

Full length mirror next to the tub? Are you brave enough? It's a fantastic magazine picture, but is it realistic?

Same tub, different setting...

Freestanding tubs don't have to be fancy and ornate, you can also find sleek and modern options. Isn't this mix of rustic and modern great?

Okay, okay, so if I had a view like this I may be persuaded to splurge and stretch the pocketbook.
Ahhh, becoming one with nature!

What do you think? Are you a tub lover that sees the value in paying thousands for a soak? If it's your refuge, it's totally a place to splurge, right? If the bathroom's "just a place to get things done," what other area would you prefer to stretch your budget?

Enjoy the weekend, friends.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Random Act of Kindness #63

Warning, Warning...they're out in full force. I know because I have one! A Girl Scout, that is. It's that time of year, friends. You know, when you suddenly dread going to Walmart, the grocery store, your front door. Pretty much anywhere because you know you're going to get hit up to buy cookies!

Well, let's turn this potentially annoying (and calorie ladened) experience into a RAK! This way it all suddenly becomes more bearable.

Just to get your mouth watering...



The RAK?...



It's a win/win situation. You make a little girl happy, you save yourself the calories and you surprise someone with a box of cookies. 

Both my kids walked out the door for school this morning with a box of cookies and a RAK card. They were planning on having someone sneak the cookies into their teachers' boxes in the conference room so they wouldn't know who they came from. Not sure if they're stealth enough to pull this off but we'll see!

Need a RAK card? Click here to download and print your own. They're always great to have on hand.

Ok, friends...go out and be kind!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Art turned iPhone Cases

I'm in the market for a new phone case and I'm having a really hard time making up my mind. It seems like a simple decision but have you noticed how many choices are out there?! Millllllions.

During my extensive search I came across a really fun option...art work turned iPhone cases. Of course, I'm a bit partial to the abstract prints.


Simplicity at its best. Would it start looking dirty too quickly though? The case, that is, not the art!



Ahhh, bring the serenity of the sea to your everyday life. Not a bad thing!


Fun and funky with a colorful twist.


Perfect for the Neutral Nellies out there.


Hee hee, get it?...Long bike ride. It may be fun to bring a giggle to people as they catch a glimpse of your phone. Also, how cute would this print be in a nursery?


What is it with giraffes? Kind of love 'em. Fun and whimsical.



And, back to my standard...neutral and graphic. 

The fun doesn't stop here. Each of these prints is also available to be printed on pillows, hoodies, canvases and stationary. Check it out here.
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