diy: privacy window

Remember the 90’s cloud-like, floral, drapes? Well our house was covered in them when we first moved in. The previous owner went the extra mile with the master bedroom and bathroom by painting the trim and heat vents (?) RED to match the drapes and floral border. Classy.

The first thing I did in the house was take down all of those drapes and donate them to Goodwill. I’m not sure if anyone would want to buy them but I tried to do a good thing!

We live on a corner so without curtains in the house and specifically the master bathroom, every neighbor could have their chance at a good show. My husband said that the shutters left by the previous owners (that just sat precariously on the window sill) covered enough but I begged to differ. For a week or so before I came up when the following classy drapes alternative I even showered with the light off out of paranoia. HA.


For now I’ll tolerate the green tiling and floral wallpaper border but I wanted to fix the privacy issue and tackle that red paint.


I just want to start off the process by saying that you need to do your research beforehand! In my steps I had a series of small issues like accidentally painting the glass with the white window paint (which led me to redo the frosted glass spray), applying the paint too thin, applying the paint too thick, and trouble removing the painters tape. I would have saved myself a good amount of time if I had prepped better. I won’t make that mistake again!

First off, I prepped by sanding any rough areas and washing down the window with some soap and water. You don’t want any dust or dirt to stop your paint from adhering well.

Then I taped the window to prep it for the spray paint. I should have spray painted after the window paint was completely dry but I’ll explain my process so you don’t make the same mistakes. 🙂

the window taped and sides protected with paper

It’s pretty rough and not healthy to spray paint inside so make sure you’ve got as many windows open as possible. I only did one pane at a time to let the dust settle.

after frosting

Next up I taped off the window edges and primed the surface with two coats. (I didn’t figure out how to get good coloring in my photos until the end of my process so the color is pretty off!)


I primed the window with painters tape so I got a small amount on my freshly frosted glass. Come on Adrienne! Then to try to salvage my poor painting job I added Frog Tape to the windows to protect them from the two white top coats.
This helped a ton!

top coats

If I had properly tapped everything in the beginning then I would have been able to use my larger brush to paint. Since I didn’t do that, I used a small one inch brush to get into the small areas.

After two weekends and three days of work (which is a ridiculous amount of time) my privacy window was finally finished!



You can see there’s a little red paint left but I think it turned out pretty well! I know the frosted glass works because I made my husband test it out at night while I stood outside like a creeper and watched him to see if I could make anything out. HA.

Let’s recap because I’m sure you’re really confused on what steps to take when:

  1. tape off the glass and around the window with Frog Tape
  2. sand any rough areas with a fine sandpaper
  3. wash off the window with a little sponge, soap, and water
  4. paint the window with two coats of primer
  5. paint the window with two coats of top coat
  6. right after the top coat is done, remove the painters tape
  7. wait about a day to let the paint completely dry and then tape off the window
  8. spray paint the glass with the frosted spray – use as directed
  9. remove the rest of the tape and you’re done!

This isn’t the ‘greenest’ project I’ve done but I’m glad I was able to reuse one material. That’s something right? I’ll also be able to use the rest of the materials when I finish painting all that red trim in the rest of the bathroom and bedroom.

PLEASE promise me you’ll never paint trim a crazy color. Stick with white or even off-white if you want to go super crazy!

olivia – week 6

Since I’m currently watching paint dry for tomorrow’s post I thought I’d update you on Olivia since it’s been awhile!

You know someone is officially part of your family when you have 5 nicknames for them -> Liv, Wiv, Livia, Wivia, & o-liv-i-AAA (sang to the tune of ‘Activia!‘). Yeah that last one…my sister’s odd. 🙂

Yesterday we went to the dog park. I don’t know if it was the smaller amount of dogs in the park due to our earlier than normal arrival but it was a turning point for Olivia. She PLAYED in PUBLIC. If you’ve read my earlier updates about her, (found here and here) you know she’s a timid lady so for her to have the confidence to play is super exciting.

they're playing not fighting, I promise!

She mostly stuck to running with Roary but she did have some bouts of playfulness towards other dogs.

Olivia is still eating well but as I mentioned before, Roary is having trouble staying out of her bowl. A couple times now I’ve even caught Roary growling at whoever is too close to her own bowl. ME included! I laid the smackdown when I caught her in the act – by making her submit and lay down on her side until she relaxed. I won’t tolerate a food aggressive dog in my house! Roary’s issue isn’t helping Olivia so let’s hope I can get her under control. They don’t have any problems drinking from the water bowl at the same time though! Hmm.

Walking is going so much better. I purchased two new leads (found here) for the girls that keep the loop at the top of their necks so they are easier to control. Instead of stopping when Olivia starts to pull, I now tap her on the side of her torso with my foot (as always, Cesar Millan style). Because she’s so skiddish, she stops pulling right away and falls back in line with Roary. This is a great example of my dogs’ difference in personalities. I could probably kick Roary across the street and she’d still be staring at an elusive squirrel but with Olivia it’s just a tap. For Roary I use the tug to the side approach which (usually) snaps her out of her pulling trance. Oh and Olivia still freezes when big trucks go by which I admit IS a bit scary when they’re flying down the road. She’s also not barking at other walkers anymore. She might let out a little growl but once they get close to us she’s fine.

potty training
She did have an accident yesterday but we tested the girls by leaving them with free range of the entire house for two hours while we were gone. In the past couple weeks we went from keeping them in their crate to letting them roam the kitchen/den area. We’ve only tested the kitchen/den area a couple times so expanding their freedom to the entire house was probably premature. It’ll take a couple tries before Olivia realizes she just has to hold it until we get back!

roary & playing
As I mentioned earlier, this is going great! Course now they’re so comfortable playing that they like to jump on my bed at 6:30 in the morning and wrestle. As you can see from this picture, it’d be pretty intense for the early morning!

at the park

the husband
His patience is waning but Olivia is still making good progress with him. The other day I heard a girly yelp from the other side of the room. I looked over and saw that Olivia had  jumped up and put her paws on my husband’s stomach. (She often does that when she’s excited). The girly cry had come from the excited grown man with the giant smile on his face. I have to tell you that this man does not show much emotion so it was a hilarious sight to see!

She also willingly sits near him these days. In comparison to when we first got her – she would run out of a room if he were in it. Breakthrough indeed!

his girls

We are so glad that she’s a part of our family. She’s learning commands, showing emotion, and getting more comfortable each day. It’s so fun to watch her progression.

At first we thought she might be too mellow for crazy, cooky, Roary.

hello there

But we’re finding out that she has a very entertaining personality as well!

relax, take a load off

I might have to do a post consisting of just awkward Olivia poses and faces. She has a TON and it’s hilarious. 🙂

Now that she’s settled in, we’ve been discussing our next foster. We’re thinking we’re going to stick to just one for now and see how it goes. Next Saturday we’ll be volunteering at BARK again so we hope to make a decision then.

Stay tuned!

5 ways to keep DIY projects ‘green’

My husband and I have only lived in our house since December. It’s a cute Dutch Colonial Split-level from 1970. There are no modern updates besides our fridge that we replaced as well as our oven which I talked about in the oven incident. Needless to say, we have a lot of updating to do!

the house before we moved in - can you even see it with all that greenery?!

I want to keep stuff as earth friendly as I can. There will be times when I buy new things but I’m going to try my best to keep most of it ‘green’. With that said, I thought I’d put together a little list of ways I hope to go about doing that!

5 way to keep my DIY projects Green:

  1. Buy used furniture and decor items – We’ve already found this amazing store called Class & Trash here in Richmond where we’ve bought a couple pieces of furniture and some lamps. There are a lot of other stores in the area that we have yet to check out. It’s really fun to dig around in antique stores! American Pickers anyone? We LOVE that show in this house.
  2. When building a new piece, used reclaimed supplies – My husband and I have a Lowe’s credit card but I recently found out that Habitat for Humanity’s Restore Richmond has a ton of wood and nails that are dirt cheap. Our house has very little storage so I’m thinking my husband will be making a couple shelving units.
  3. Refinish furniture that we have already have – About two years ago I went on a new furniture shopping spree. Everything is a similar style and therefore pretty boring. What the heck what I thinking? I’m planning on refinishing a couple pieces to give them new life and bring more character to the space.
  4. Use supplies I have around the house – This will be a little tough in the beginning because we’ve only done a handful of projects BUT I was successful with this for my first DIY project that I’ll be posting next week.
  5. Deal with what I’ve got – Sometimes you THINK the grass is always greener on the other side – a new stylin’ couch, table, art, etc. but sometimes you just need to look at what you have in a different light. (Wow that line could be applied to everything in life!) If I’m sick of a certain room maybe I just need to rearrange it or switch out the decor! I’ll only need a little time and creativity.

It might be easier to hop in the car and drive to the big box store but I believe it’d be so much more rewarding to creatively find a way to repurpose and reuse old items. Like a design challenge from HGTV!

little ladies

What’s wrong with the picture above? No, it’s not the mess on the bed with dogs, three different blankets, and pile of toys. 🙂 It’s also not that my buds look miserable and half asleep. Think RED (yuck) and stay tuned for my DIY project next week!

Enjoy the weekend!!

yummy: protein energy bars

I’m am totally on top of operation NO CANDY. The same day I announced that I was stopping candy, I made one of Angela’s recipes as an alternative. Go me!

Yesterday I made Last Minute Protein Energy Bars. I initially made them for my husband because he likes to scarf down two Nature Valley bars a day. I decided to make him a substitute since they aren’t very nutrient dense (compared to brands like Kashi or Cliff) and also that’s a ton of trash that we don’t need! <- a good example of my hippie itch.

This is another great, simple recipe. There’s no cooking required and they’re ready to eat in minutes!

the dry ingredients

The dry ingredients were easy to find but I substituted honey for the brown rice syrup & peanut butter for the sunflower butter. I found both of those ingredients on the supermarket shelves but they’re just too pricey for me.

honey - no high fructose corn syrup here!

Another substitute I used was chocolate protein powder instead of plain. It’s just what I had on hand. To offset the flavoring in the protein I used less of the melted chocolate on top. It worked just fine!

mmm chocolate

I’ve been told by my husband that these are the best bars I’ve made yet. I’m so glad they’re easy to make since I’ll now be making them every week!

chocolate drizzle

Oh and I also doubled the recipe to make the bars a little thicker. I used a 13×9 glass baking dish.

a sample for the cook!

Not only does my husband have his snack and I have my candy alternative but I also have a hearty dessert to eat after my training runs! Score! Lately I’ve felt like I haven’t gotten enough calories or protein due to all the extra calories burned so I’m hoping these bars will help.

I bet they won’t last till the end of the week!

operation NO CANDY

I love candy but it’s just no good.

my first weapon of choice

I’ve mentioned in earlier posts that I have a major sweet tooth – I made a joke about eating a whole box of Mike and Ikes! I think I did that because I know it’s bad and wanted to make light of the situation. Hmm, deep.

Growing up I took my prized dollars straight to the candy aisle. If there was candy in the house, I would find it and eat it until it was gone.

First off I have to defend my parents and say that we ate pretty healthy growing up – only having a cookie or two as our nightly dessert. And I’m proud to say we NEVER had soda unless you count a little ginger ale for an upset stomach. You’d think I wouldn’t want candy that badly because of our healthy eating, but I do. Odd.

Lately I’ve noticed that I buy candy even if I’m not craving it! I stand there in the aisle at the supermarket asking my husband to help me choose because I really don’t want any!! I know it makes me feel like crap after I eat it and I know it’s not healthy. Why the heck do I eat it?

Discuss amongst yourselves.

my second weapon of choice

Or not and I’ll figure it out for us. I just wanted to use that Coffee Talk line. 🙂

My answer is one word, habit. Habits are so engrained in our human brains. We are comfortable with routine even if it’s not healthy (or so it seems)!

Friday night after dinner, it’s treat time. Feeling suuuper tired, it’s treat time. Feeling like crap, it’s treat time. Candy is comfort to me.

It affects my sleep habits, my happiness, my training for the 10k, my health, and many more things I’m sure. Because it screws up so much of my life, I’ve decided that I’ve got to stop this bad habit right here, right now. I’ve attempted to stop before but I gave myself wiggle room to have smaller pieces of candy. Obviously that didn’t work. This time I’m going to stop cold turkey. NO CANDY.

To help retrain my brain and break the habit I’ve found other options for the different scenarios. I’m going to eat something healthier (like fruit or a healthy dessert by Angela) if I want candy, take a nap if I’m super tired, or get moving if I’m in a slump. I think that having these alternatives at the ready will really help me overcome the problem.

Now hopefully after my husband reads this post, he’ll join in. Right bud? Often if one of us caves the other will too, so it’d be good if we do this together. (This isn’t a plea, I know he’ll want to join in!)

I’m going food shopping this afternoon to pick up my alternatives so we can start the new habits ASAP.

If I win this battle it’s going to be so freeing! I’ll feel better overall, spend less time on the couch, and more time with my family. <- Moving towards a more fulfilling life.

Do you have any tips to help me break my candy habit? I’d love to hear any thoughts!

yummy: mexican lasagna

Every Friday night my husband and I have a discussion over where we’re going out to eat. My suggestion is almost always mexican. I love mexican food. I repeat. I LOVE mexican food. So when I saw this recipe from Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point, I knew I had to make it. Four ingredients to make a dish that resembles the disgustingly delicious mexican pizza at Taco Bell? Heck yeah! Now I can avoid Taco Hell Bell and eat a much healthier version at home.

You know the recipe is great if you interrupt your family in mid-conversation multiple times by yelling “Scrumptious!!” and then smiling like a weirdo.

The recipe can be found here. Now I did change it up a little bit – I added in crazy habanero cheddar just because it was on sale and then I also used diced tomatoes as the garnish instead of salsa because I forgot to buy more. I always seem to forget just ONE item on my list. Does that happen to you??

I went photo crazy with this recipe just to let you know. Shooting with the manual setting is so much fun!

the materials


layered up


um excuse me, can I have some cheese?


the results!


my second helping

Random but relevant:
Do you see the smiley face in the photo above? Okay well my Dad, sister, and I love finding faces in odd places because of this commercial. I even hinted at this odd obsession in a caption from the oven post.  Did you see the face in the oven?

To continue our habit, I’ve decided that with every food post I’m going to have one photo with a ‘face’ in it. It’s fun!! Just go with it.

So this recipe, you need to make it soon! You won’t regret it and especially not the extra cheese that you’re going to add. 🙂

moments, mornings, and mondays

Try going from a job where you sit for 8 hours all day to a job where you stand for 10. Holy moly. I’m LOVING my new job so far but I can’t wait until I build new stamina! My feet, back, and hips are dying over here.

I’m pooped but I must want to write.


When we’re attempting to live a more fulfilling and positive life (as I am on the quest to do) it often seems overwhelming  – eat healthy, exercise, get enough sleep and so on. I’ve found that it’s really the tiny moments and decisions that add up over time and help me achieve my goal of creating healthy habits.

With every moment I have the chance to choose between something positive or negative. These moments in life begin during my morning routine.

I wanted to start my Monday and week off right since it was my first week at my new job, so as soon as I woke up I sat on the floor beside my bed and meditated for 5 minutes. I think I focused on the words ‘confident’ and ‘calm’ to get me through the day. This tiny choice helped me keep my head clear and positive.

I also flossed and made the bed. These two things are just chores but also positive choices!

monday - like a boss!

I feel so much better if my morning starts off on the right foot. Case in point – Monday I did all three of those things and today I did not. Today I struggled to even get out of bed and I wasn’t as cheerful. If I had done what I was supposed to do I know I wouldn’t have hit the snooze, forcing myself to rush around, skipping a good breakfast habit, my ‘green’ smoothie (with fruit, protein, milk, and spinach).

tuesday - don't bother me

This leads to my realization that if I have a good morning then I’ll most likely have a healthy and happy day.

And then if I start my Mondays off right I’ll probably have a great week! Of course that isn’t always the case but there’s no need to beat yourself up about it. There’s always that next moment where you have the possibility of making a positive choice!

Every little bit counts!

Want to start a your day off right? Here’s how to mediate! You’ll feel like a goofball at first but it’s wonderful once you stop laughing at yourself.


BTW, I’ve finally figured out my blogging schedule! Once my training is done next week, my cooking recipes, DIY projects, and everything else will become routine. I’m looking to blog at least Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. 🙂