Lollipop lollipop

Mr. Owl how many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie Pop?

Lollipop lollipop
Oh lolli lolli lolli
Lollipop lollipop

The world may never know.

Having a 4th of July BBQ and as I’ve made Lollipop trees before I never thought of doing one for 4th of July until I saw it on Pinterest and said to myself “Self…You have to do that too”. So, if you’ve never made a Lollipop tree, here is a simple DIY tutorial.

What You’ll Need

  • 2016-06-27 21.29.51.jpg6″ Styrofoam Ball
  • 2016-06-27 21.29.54Party City Plastic Bucket (Color of Choice) 
    • For this, depending on what your making your Lollipop tree for you can go with something a little nicer for example a flower pot or tin pail  or basket even. 
  • 2016-06-27 21.30.13Tootsie Pops
    • Since I was doing a specific color I purchased them at Wegmans instead of buying a box and not having enough of the right color. 

Step I:

Place your 6″ styrofoam ball into the plastic bucket. It should fit in perfectly so that half is inside the bucket and half is outside. 

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Step II:

Place your lollipops inside the foam; starting at the top and working your way in a circle to the bottom. Give them a little space in between one another but not too much.

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Step III:

Place out on a table for guests to enjoy. 

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DIY Fire Pit


When we moved into our new house we had a perfect spot for a bonfire. I had seen patio fire pits already put together in steel bowls that could be moved around the yard and I had seen a few fire pits that were available in kits that you could put together. All of the above were pretty expensive. I saw a video on Youtube of a DIY fire pit for just under $100.00 and that seemed pretty reasonable to me. 

This may look like a difficult project but it’s extremely easy. Once you have all the right materials, and about an hour of your time. You’ll soon have a fire pit where family and friends can gather round and enjoy a night toasting marshmallows and reminiscing about the good ol’ days. 

What Your Gonna Need:

  • 36 Concrete Retaining Wall Blocks
    • I got the blocks on sale at Lowes, 5 for $10.00. The sales person was extremely helpful. Not only did he help me find what I was looking for, he loaded up my cart, pushed it to the front (boy, did it look heavy) and then he loaded up my truck for me. I didn’t even catch his name, but I am grateful for his help. 
  • Weber Plated Steel Hinged Cooking Grate (21.5″)
    • I ended up purchasing this at Target. The original one I purchased at Lowes ended up being too small. So instead of going back, I went to Target instead and found the right size. 
  • 3 Bricks
    • I actually had the bricks at home already but they were available at Lowes as well. 
  • 3 Pieces of rebar (2 feet) 
    • Available at Lowes
  • 4 Hose Clamps
    • Available at Lowes
  • Pea Pebbles
    • Purchased at Home Depot. 

Step I:

  • Find the spot in your yard that you going to be building on. Make absolutely sure there is going to be the spot you want to build because once you have the bricks in place it’s going to be a pain to move.
    • We have a raised octagon concrete slab in our yard so this is where my fire pit will be. 

Step II:

  • Position your cooking grate in the middle of the concrete slab to use as a base for placing your blocks. 

Step III: (Helpful Hint: I would use gloves while working with the blocks, it helps tremendously. I initially started without gloves and then ended up putting them on)

  • Begin your first layer, you will position nine blocks around the grate, spacing them out evenly; and making sure that you have space for airflow as you layer the blocks. So after the first layer, start the second layer; again nine blocks. 2016-06-23 17.37.22
    Then the third layer, again nine blocks and finally the last layer, nine blocks. You should have four layers of blocks spaced evenly with airflow. 
    All 36 bricks should have been used. 

Step IV:

  • Remove the Weber grill grate from the middle of the pit and place the three bricks in the bottom of the pit in a triangular shape. (One on the top in a vertical position and two on the bottom in diagonal positions)

Step V:

  • Pour the bag of pea pebbles over the bricks; this is going to ensure that the concrete doesn’t literally explode from underneath. 

Step VI:

  • The rebar is going to be used to hold the Weber grill grate into place. You can use hose clamps to attach the rebar to the grate. 

Step VII:

  • Finally you’ll place the grill grate on top of the pea pebbles. (Not shown in the picture)

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Now that you’re finished~add your finishing touches, some comfortable Adirondack chairs, cozy blankets, good music, cold beer, funny stories, ooey-gooey chocolaty S’mores, family and friends, and a lot of bug spray. 

Monday Funday, my backyard~All Summer Long!





For the Love of Wine

For the Love of Wine Corks

For all you wine lovers out there before you toss your wine corks away try a simple DIY project.

DIY Wine Cork Vase

I’ve been working in the restaurant business for years and never once thought of collecting corks for DIY projects. I only started collecting them about a month ago and already have about 500. The first project I decided to do was a wine cork vase which I saw on Pinterest; which is about half finished. 

What You’ll Need~

  • 2016-06-19 18.35.22A large cylinder vase (Purchased at Target)
  • 2016-05-04 15.04.592016-04-29 17.20.32Wine Corks (A few hundred)
  • LED Twig branches (Which I don’t have yet)

So once you have the vase and the corks all you got to do is fill it up and add the LED twig branches. Easy Peasy 

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Handy House Hold Hacks

Handy House Hold Hacks

Moving into a new house I wanted to make sure that this house stayed neat, organized, and comfortable to be in as opposed to my previous home which was way too cluttered. Going on Pinterest I found tons of simple household hacks that would give me the organization I was looking for. 


  • First things first, there is nothing uglier in a kitchen then plastic bottles with dish soap or hand soap covered in goop and bubbles after so much use. 
    • Simple Hack: Trade them out for Olive Oil bottles

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  • Use damage free Command hanging hooks for extra storage.
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Wine Tasting & Cork Collecting (For future project)


  • Speaking of Olive Oil bottles they are perfect for mouth wash as well. 
  • Mason Jar Soap Dispenser
  • Rubbermaid Cultery Tray for toothbrushes and toothpastes, place in a cabinet out of sight.

Always check out your local Goodwill stores you never know what you will find. For example, I found a blue lobster trap wooden box with a starfish embellishment which was absolutely perfect for what I was looking for and matched the color and theme for my new house. I saw these on Etsy for $50.00~$100.00. I found mine at the Goodwill for 99 cents. Awesome deal!



  • If you have the space use glass jar for soap storage.
  • Use decor to coordinate with the theme of your bathroom.

Laundry Room~

  • Use metal pail for loose change
  • Glass cylinder vase for dryer sheets
  • Clear plastic candy jar for detergent pods





DIY Wooden Crate Bookshelf

DIY Wooden Crate Bookshelf

Initially I bought two wood crates from Target as props for my sister’s baby shower. After the shower was over I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with the crates especially since they said “Welcome baby girl” on them. Then I saw an idea for a book shelf made out of the same crates on Pinterest and it was a no brainer that I was going to do this project. 

What You’ll Need:

  • Two Wood Crates
  • Plaid Apple Barrel White Acrylic Paint
  • Thick Paint Brush
  • Plaid Apple Barrel Acapulco Acrylic Paint
  • Thin Paint Brush
  • Double Heart Chalkboard Stencil 

For the baby shower, I initially painted the crates white; then used the double heart stencil for the sides of the crate. Of course, if your doing just the book shelf you don’t have to add the decal.  

Step I: 

  • Buy the crates, they are available at any arts and crafts store, as well as Target & Walmart. They can be expensive, I bought mine for $13.00 a piece. 


  • Next, paint the crates. I used the Apple Barrel White Acrylic Paint, though now that I’m familiar with spray paint I would definitely suggest using the spray paint instead. It’s not as time consuming and would make less of a mess. I had a lot of paint drips on my floor. 
  • Let your paint dry and add extra coats if needed. 


Step II: 

  • I used a thin paint brush and a chalk board double heart stencil as well as Apple Barrel Acapulco Acrylic Paint to make the double hearts on the side of the crates (Again, I did this part for the baby shower, it’s not necessary for your book shelf; but you could use another stencil to add to the side of the crates to coordinate with the theme in your room). 
  • Let your paint decal dry. 

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Step III:

  • Once all the paint is dry, stack the two crates on top of one another. I would suggest that if you’re going to do more than two crates then you should secure the crates together so they don’t topple over.  What’s great about this project is you can make it as large or as small as you want. Two crates, four crates, eight crates; a whole wall full of crates (Vertical or horizontal), depending on how much storage space you need. 

Step IV:

  • Fill your book shelf. You don’t necessarily have to fill it with books. 
  • This is a perfect place to store all my Shutterfly albums as well as precious mementos. 

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Making your own book shelf is so much easier and way more awesome than buying one in the store. 

Imagine the possibilities you could do with this project. 



DIY Beach Decor Shell Letter

DIY Beach Decor Shell Letter

What You’ll Need~

  • Wood Letter
  • Blue Chalk Paint
  • Paint Brush
  • Sea Shells
  • Hot Glue Gun 

I’ve been seeing the shell letters all over Pinterest along the lines of coastal living and though I don’t live coastal in any remote sense I have started a coastal theme in my home. I decided to do one coastal letter; (B~for the initial in my name) but I knew before I even did this project that I didn’t want the letter over loaded with shells like most of the pictures I saw. 

If your making one, you can decorate it however you like. With jewelry, sea glass, sea shells, star fish, pearls, sand dollars etc.

The letters are cheap and you can get them anywhere.  I got mine from Target in the dollar section. I was looking for something that had a ribbon on it so that I could hang it from a hook. It was originally green. Not the right color but it had the ribbon that I was looking for to hang easily so I purchased it.

I’ve had the shells from a previous project, these were the ones left over. I believe I got them at Hobby Lobby for approximately $4.00. The other couple shells are from the beach in Florida. 

I used the blue chalk paint to repaint over the green and to paint some of the shells. Then waited for them to dry. 

I then used hot glue to attach the shells to the letter. Though I probably could have used shell glue if I had some; it might have worked better. 

This is a very simple DIY project and inexpensive. 

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My letter has a lot of open spaces so there is room for additions. I haven’t decided yet if I am going to attach some pearls or smaller shells into the open spaces.




Bringing an abandoned pool back to life.


Bringing an abandoned pool back to life…

Before we even moved into our new house I was excited because from the photos I could see there was a pool. My first hope was that they didn’t take the pool with them. When I found out that the pool was included with the house I was over the moon. I haven’t had a pool since I was a kid. 

When we moved into the house I ran straight for the pool and unfortunately I realized it was going to be a huge job to open up. The pool had been closed but after a long winter the cover had been dragged off it’s hinges into the pool and was holding on by a thread. There was so much water build up, algae and just a swampy feel. The water wasn’t even green it was nearly black. I couldn’t even see the bottom it was so murky.

We considered getting rid of the pool. =(


We called up someone we know who does pools and for $150 bucks he and his buddy took off the pool cover, wrapped it up nicely. And proceeded to take the proper steps to opening up the pool. I watched with excitement as the color of the water began to change.  

We’re not there yet, but we’re getting there. 

The pool needs to filter for a few days, get a good vacuum and then it will be ready for a swim. So excited! =)


Well, even though it was blue it quickly turned green again. And there was a lot of algae build up on the floor of the pool. I was literally vacuuming every single day trying to get the algae up; trying to get the water clear. We bought hth Super 4 in 1 shock treatment; and hth Super Clarifier and that seemed to clear it up; but the algae was still on the floor. I brushed it up several times which caused a lot of murkiness in the water. At one point it was so brown I swear Shrek wouldn’t have wanted to get into that water. 

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I got some advice from some friends on what I could do for my pool and the first suggestion was to take it to Pool and Patio to get the water tested. According to the pool store they told me my water was clear for swimming; there was a few things I could do to get it to absolute perfect levels if I was willing to spend the money. (I didn’t do that) Still, I assured them that there was no way my water was ready for swimming because it was so brown and murky. They told me to drop some chlorine tablets in there and it would clear up. My friend then told me to get a 5 gallon jug of chlorine also, and to dump that in there and it would clear up. So I put one tablet in the skimmer and one in the duck with floats around the pool; these are relatively large tablets. I then added the 5 gallon jug of chlorine; and I also purchased a yellow shock and clear (for the algae); brushed the pool down again and vacuumed it. I also added more shock and more clarifier…I wasn’t expecting much…I thought the pool was just a dud…Until the next morning when I woke up…

To this!

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I gave it one last brush and vacuum and were in good shape for a BBQ on the 4th of July…
And I’ve looked forward to saying this for months

The pool is open and ready for action!