Tag Archive: personal

What I’ve been up to lately

Happy Saturday! I hope you have been doing well.


Some of you may have been wondering where I have been because it has been really quiet here on my blog the past few weeks. Actually, I have been taking a little bit of a break from blogging.

Life has been pretty hectic the last little while with getting my kids ready for school, my garden ready for the winter and spending time with my Mom who was at my house visiting. There just hasn’t been as much time as I would have liked to work on my projects.

This past week I was all gung-ho about getting back to work on my projects and then I ended up having a health set-back. It all started just over a week ago (last Friday) when I starting feeling unwell. The right side of my neck was really sore with shooting pains and my sense of taste was significantly altered. Everything I ate or drank either tasted really bitter or extremely salty. I was concerned, so I went to the doctor who told me I had just pulled a muscle in my neck. He sent me home with some anti-inflammatory medication for my neck and after two days I wasn’t seeing any improvement. Things seemed to be getting worse.

On Monday, I woke up with swollen eyes but didn’t think much of it because I was off to the hospital that day to give my Sister some support (she was there for her scheduled c-section). That day my Nephew, Matthew was born. I was so excited for my Sister, despite that I was still feeling under the weather.

By Tuesday, my eyes were getting more and more swollen and now they were very itchy. I thought I had Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye) but the drops I bought weren’t helping. Then Wednesday, when I woke up my face looked funny to me. I couldn’t close my right eye very easily and I thought it looked like the right side of my face was frozen and droopy. I was really worried that I might be having a stroke so off I went to the Emergency room.

When I finally got in to see the ER doctor and he went through all of his tests on me, he told me something that surprised me. He said that he didn’t think that I was having a stroke, but that I actually had developed a mild case of Bell’s Palsy. I went home freaked out a little because I had no idea what Bell’s Palsy was. I had never known anyone that had suffered from the condition. Apparently, it seems to be quite a common thing.

So what is Bell’s Palsy? It is a temporary paralysis of the facial muscles, usually on one side of the face that can last anywhere from 2 weeks to a number of years. Some people recover fully from it while others have lasting effects for years after the initial episode. It is not known for sure why Bell’s Palsy happens but most doctors believe that it is initially caused by a virus.

There is no way to prevent it and you can’t take a pill to make it go away. As a treatment, doctors usually prescribe a course of steroids to help reduce swelling and damage to the facial nerves. This does not guarantee recovery, but it has helped some people with Bell’s Palsy to recover quicker.

I seem to have a pretty mild case compared to others I have seen on the Internet who often have more facial involvement. My right side of my face is a little droopy. My right eye looks smaller than my left and it won’t close all the way unless I force it to. My smile is crooked, I can’t whistle anymore, and my eyebrows are at different levels when I raise them. If you didn’t know me, you might think that there is nothing wrong with my face until I smile or blink my eyes. Then you can tell something is not quite right.

Because my right eye doesn’t close fully it tends to dry out which can cause damage to my cornea; therefore, I need to put eye drops in my eye every hour and wear a patch to protect my eye at night. To speed up my recovery, I am also trying to take more time to rest and of course eat better. I also made an appointment to start acupuncture on my face next week. Ouch!

I know my blog is about decorating and not so much about my personal life but it is important to me to keep you in the loop so that you know that I am still here. I also want you to know that I am not writing this post so that you feel sorry for me. I don’t feel sorry for myself and I know that I will get over this one way or another. I am so thankful that I have been pretty healthy most of my life and I have only recently been diagnosed with Bell’s Palsy. It could have been much worse, like a stroke or another serious disease.  This is still not something that I am happy about but I am trying to be optimistic that I will fully recover in the next few weeks because my case is so mild. One day this will only be a distant memory for me.

While I rest, I may be a little slower posting projects on my blog. I just have so much on my plate right now with trying to get better, work full-time and also be there for my family. Blogging isn’t easy for me to keep up with right now.

I hope you understand and that you will keep coming back to see my newest projects because you like what I have to share. I am so thankful that you take the time to visit my blog, send me e-mails and leave me comments. You inspire me to keep going.

I am planning to be back to posting 1-3 times a week as soon I feel up to it and I promise to keep you updated on how my healing is going. In the meantime, I do have another tutorial coming up that I had almost finished before life got so hectic. I am just finishing off the final touches and I hope to share it with you soon.

Do you know anyone with Bell’s Palsy or have you had it yourself? Do you have any tips for me?


Enjoy the rest of your weekend,




Bridgetown, Barbados, 2010




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What I’ve been up to lately & a sneak peek

I’m back! Back to blogging that is…I missed you guys so much!

I decided to take a little break from blogging these past couple of weeks so I could work on decluttering my house as I mentioned previously HERE and to try to re-group mentally. My husband was also out of town so I was a single Mom for a good chunk of that time. It was interesting being on my own to say the least! Kudos to all of the single Mom’s out there for managing to keep on top of everything on your own!

So what else have I been up to for the past couple of weeks? Well, last weekend my kids and I decided to take a trip down south to Calgary to go to the Stampede. You can read about what the Stampede is all about here. The main reason we went there was to visit my husband who was working there. Also, this would be our first time attending this event and we were curious to see how the Stampede Midway compared to our local Midway in Edmonton.

The Midway at the Stampede is basically a gigantic carnival with rides, games, exhibits and loads of fattening foods. We were excited to attend because it’s not like we get to do this sort of thing every day as it only happens during the summer. That’s a good thing because you can spend over $200 in an hour with the cost of the entrance fee, the ride tickets, the games etc. Nevertheless, my kids and I found a few Stampede favorites which were the cinnamon mini donuts, the handglider ride, the horse exhibit and the water shooter game. So much fun!

I had planned to take my camera so I could take some photos to show you all but I forgot my camera back at the hotel which was a 45 minute drive away. Doh! Then I thought I could just use my cell phone to take some photos but its battery was almost dead! In the end I was only able to snap a couple of photos of these Tee-pee’s to share with you from the Native Indian exhibit.




Oh how I wished I was prepared and remembered to charge my electronics before we left the hotel! I can be so scatter-brained sometimes. Haha!




Anyway, I am now back into the swing of things blogging-wise (a word I just made up) and I have a couple of completed projects to show you and many more projects in various stages of completion.

Here is a sneak peek of a little project I worked on yesterday; this super easy DIY lace flower vase. Stay tuned for the tutorial coming up early this evening.



It feels great to be back! What have you all been up to? I would love to hear from you.


Until next time…






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Just back from a little road trip with some inspiration

Hello there! How was your weekend?

Mine? It was a lot of fun but I’m ready to call it a night.

This weekend we decided to take a little road trip to Calgary, Alberta (about 3 hours away from where we live) to attend the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo (my hubby and my two kids are huge Star Trek and superhero fans). Although, I am more into decorating and shopping than I’m into Superman, Green Lantern and the like, I decided to tag along for the ride anyway as I thought it would be a lot of fun for my kids (two smaller ones and one big one). I could also do what I love to do best; get some shopping in while we were there.

Unfortunately, the Comic Con Expo was over capacity so we were unable to attend the show, but we did get to do a bit of shopping and check out some of Calgary’s attractions, which was fun just the same.

I was so happy that we were able to get over to Calgary’s Chinook Mall today so I could stop by a couple of my favorite stores. The first store is Pottery Barn. We don’t have one of these stores where we live so I usually only get to visit once a year at most. I love to go through the store and snap photos of things that give me some inspiration so I can refer back to them later.

I took quite a few photos today and I thought I would share them with you as you might find them inspirational as well.




Pottery Barn this Spring is all about sea shells, sea fans, coral, sand…basically anything to do with the sea. In addition to the beach themed items there seemed to be a lot of glass and neutral colors such as white and cream.

This is one of my favorite decorating schemes. Because it is neutral, it is so easy to add some brightly colored items into the mix such as throw pillows or a decorative vase to kick things up a notch. Then when you decide that you want a change, it is so easy to take away the colorful items and go back to a neutral palette. I love the versatility of this arrangement.




These cute little bottles that I saw were really neat. They would be so easy to make, don’t you think? All you would need is some artificial plastic sedum plants and/or some plastic sea fans, some small little bottles and a glue gun, and in a couple of minutes you would have your very own little Pottery Barn inspired bottles. They would look wonderful massed together on a mantle, lined up on a windowsill or on a coffee table in a woven basket as they are displayed in the photo above.




This sea shell bowl arrangement would be really easy to reproduce at home as well. All that would be needed is a large glass bowl, some beach sand (or Epsom Salts if you don’t have sand), a few sea shells and/or some coral and a glass ball or finial. It would make a perfect centerpiece on a coffee table or placed on your patio table in the garden. What a wonderful way to bring a little bit of sand and sea into your home!






I really like how they have grouped coral and mercury glass/ galvanized metal together. It works so well together because the coral provides some texture and the mercury glass gives contrast to the creams and whites and also adds a bit of sparkle.




I also saw a lot of textured/woven shades and rugs. The glass lamp with sand and shells inside is a very cool idea. Again, we are back to the beach theme.




Doesn’t this sea inspired bed look super comfy? After shopping for a few hours I was ready to get up on in this bed if the sales associates would have let me. I can only dream…








I decided to snap a photo of this clock wall gallery layout for some future inspiration. I would love to try this in my office one day.

The wood stained clock on the far right would be very easy to make. You would only need a piece of plywood, some lattice strips, a spare clock, some wood stain, some silicon, a miter box and saw, a jig saw, and some other small tools to finish it off.

I would think that this project would only cost $10-20 at most and it could be made in a couple of hours.  You could cut the costs considerably if you found a clock at a thrift store or used one that you already owned and also used some scrap pieces of wood from around your house. I am all about using what you already have if you are able to. Re-use and recycle and at the same time get a lot of bang for your buck!

Another great thing about making your own framed clock is that you can make it any size that you want to fit on your mantle, in your hallway or anywhere else you would like to display it.




I thought these large jars were really cool too. I don’t know that I would actually use them to store cereal but I think that they would be great as a display piece on top of a pantry cupboard or on the kitchen counter.



As you can see my other favorite store is Anthropologie. We have one of these where I live but since I was out shopping anyway, I always can make time for some Anthropologie inspiration.




These little ceramic strawberry baskets have been at Anthropologie for a while. I still love them though and one of these days I am going to break down and buy myself one.




I thought this ringed bowl was neat. Maybe it is meant to be a punch bowl of sorts and the glasses are to be hung from the rings on the bottom or maybe it is just meant to be decorative. I will need to research this one some more to figure out what its intended use is.




I love the shabby weathered looking storage cabinet, below. If I could only afford to have it in my house, it would be there in a second. It would look perfect in my “future” bathroom someday storing white towels, soaps and lotions.



These chippy plant pots were beautiful as well. I love how they look all massed together.




Have you been to Pottery Barn or Anthropologie lately? What items that I have shown you are your favorites?  Do you enjoy decorating your home in beach themed items such as sea shells, coral, etc.?

Well I am off to LaLa land. Stay tuned for the reveal of my antique sewing cabinet. I am so excited to share it with you!


Until next time,






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A little bit about me

How is your day going?

I am doing well, thanks!

I have finally done it! I have finally taken some time to write a little about me and add it to my “About” page on my blog. It only took me 2.5 months to get to this point. Gee! I guess, it’s better late than never.

You see, I am actually quite shy in person and I am not a born writer so it takes me time to warm up to writing, especially when I have to talk about myself. 

So if you are new to my blog or have been here a few times already, you may be interested in learning a little about me and how the idea of starting my blog came about. 



A little about me…

First and foremost, I am a Mom to my two wonderful children and two step-children, and a wife to my husband of 13 years. My family keeps me really busy constantly making messes around the house, but I love them to pieces!

We live in Alberta, Canada. A place of bright blue clear skies and usually frigid cold winters, but also warm summers.

During the day, I work full-time as an office worker. At night and on the weekends I like to fuel my love for anything vintage, worn or ornate with shopping trips to my favourite thrift stores and local auction houses, by dreaming up a new craft projects, or by working on transforming old, worn pieces of furniture in my garage.

I discovered my love for painting furniture only a few years ago. I had picked up a beaten up, old cabinet at a local thrift store and brought it home in hopes of bringing some new life to it. I became excited at the idea that a piece of furniture that cost very little money to buy, or even something that I already owned, could be easily and inexpensively transformed to look like it was an expensive piece of furniture.

One day, while online searching for possible colors to paint my vintage cabinet, I came across a few wonderful Home Decorating blogs and then I was hooked! I couldn’t believe all of the beautiful projects that were being shown on these blogs and all over the Internet. Fast forward many months later, I decided to take the plunge and start my own blog and what better name to call my new blog home than “Hooked on Decorating”.

Although my life is very hectic and I don’t have much time to blog, I decided to start this blog anyway for a few main reasons. Firstly, this blog is a place where I can share my passion of transforming furniture and crafting with you in hopes that I can inspire you in some way to tackle some new projects while saving you money in the process. Hey, if I can do it, so can you!

Secondly, I am a born procrastinator and having this blog motivates me to complete my projects in a timely manner. I can’t share my projects with you if they are unfinished, right? If you could see my basement full of furniture and other bits and pieces that I have yet to transform, you would also think, this is a “good” thing!   

Lastly, I love to create new things for my home and as gifts for my family and friends. The ability to create is what helps to make me whole as a person. This blog gives me an outlet where I can express myself and meet new friends who also enjoy expressing their creativity.

Thanks for stopping by for a visit. I hope that I get a chance to get to know you better and also that you enjoy what I have to share here on my blog.


Ps. I have also updated my Project Gallery page. Please stop by and check it out! It is where you can find photos and links to all of my projects in one place.


Enjoy the rest of your day!


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