Computer Area Decor

I posted my computer area makeover a few weeks ago for a Battling Chaos post and I’m finally getting around to posting some of the decorations I did. I cleaned up all of the binders, papers, file folders that had NOTHING in them, and trashed some of my old computer games. I love the new look and can’t wait to transform the the rest of my living room.

IMG_20150508_172605

BEFORE

IMG_20150525_151618

AFTER

I did a few minor upgrades which I’ll cover in a couple Wednesday Project posts.

  1. Beauty and the Beast picture
  2. Small Perfect sign
  3. Desk recolor
  4. Shelf recolor
  5. Cork board decoration
  6. Blue box for outgoing mail and things to file

 

Beauty and the Beast Picture

image

This was a fun project. My all time favorite Disney princess movie is Beauty and the Beast. Since the living room is where I keep the majority of my books, I thought it would be appropriate. I wanted something simple to do but still creative. I found a frame from TJ Maxx on clearance for $5 and painted it gold. It had a few scratches but I planned on painting it, so who cares? The little plate below was silver but to stick with the theme, I decided to paint it gold.

image

While that dried I came up with an idea for the picture. Originally I was going to paint Beauty and the Beasts silhouettes on a dark blue background. I didn’t want paint anymore so I printed off random pages of the story from different sources online. Some of the pages are in French and some in English but all tell the tale of Beauty and the Beast. Next I took those pages and aged them in the oven with coffee and coffee grounds. I found a blog post on how to age paper over at Confessions of a Plate Addict. I followed her instruction except I did not use foil under my paper and I added coffee grounds to make some age spots stick out.

After the pages were aged I used mod podge to glue the pages together. Working from the back to the front like you would normally glue paper. I left the top clean and clear of mod podge so I could add the silhouette. I ended up drawing the silhouette on with charcoal. Then I used a spray to set the charcoal so it doesn’t flake off. Put it all together and I now have this super cute Beauty and the Beast picture!

Small I’m not Perfect sign

image

image

image

I got this sign from a friend for Christmas and I love it. Originally it was a light blue and I wanted it to be just a little darker. I didn’t want to paint it so I went to Lowe’s and found Cabot interior wood stain in the blue I was looking for. I sanded the edges of the sign and lightly sanded the front. I added about 3 coats of the stain and then 1 coat of Minwax Polycrylic Protective Finish. It turned out pretty good and while the front is a little difficult to read, it’s still readable. All in all a good first time experience with staining wood!

Tiffany – The Tangled Taurus

Come here often? ;)

My lack of posts would indicate that I do not, for a fact, come here often. Yes I know this is a cheesy pick up line but it’s been a while since I posted an update. Things have not been hectic or anything but I’ve had a decreased will to post or pretty much do anything productive. I like to blame it on the heat we are having. The heat always sucks all the energy I have and converts it into pure hatred for the sun. I hate sweating, the restless nights, and did I mention the sweating? I was sick last week and almost went to work just for the AC.

So updates…

I hit a snag in my minimalist purge project, battling chaos. My desk is looking great and still nice and clean. I started working on the area right of my desk, my fireplace and my TV/TV Stand. I cleaned, purged and then started decorating. Decorating has been my downfall. I have a hard time leaving space empty and void of anything. My mantle is pretty boring and I decided to try my hand at painting a picture for it and they turned out HORRIBLE and ugly! Since then I’ve had no motivation to continue, all because a little disappointment. I don’t have any plans tonight so I figured I would clean up what I do have in place and just leave the decorating until later. Then maybe once I have the whole downstairs nice and clear, I can work on decorating.

With the heat and feeling crappy, reading again has not been happening. I have so much to catch up on it’s not funny. I really need to hammer out a reading schedule and actually follow it. I even have books I need to read before my next book club that I have been waiting to read and I just have no desire. My life is being controlled by my lack of desire to do anything that involves my brain!

And my last update before I go. In an attempt to organize my life I bought a Plum Paper Planner! I’m super excited to get this in and to start using it. I’ve tried to stay organized electronically using Google Drive, Google Keep, Google Calendar, Evernote, Todolist. HabitRPG and other random android apps. While I love Google Keep for random notes, book notes and grocery lists, it just doesn’t keep me organized. I still write myself notes, I still make lists and I still go through way to many scraps of paper. I know using a paper planner is time consuming but I’m at a place where I need to crack down and just do it.

Tiffany – The Tangled Taurus

Battling Chaos : Computer Area

For the last few weeks I’ve been busy working on my computer area. Like I said in my last Battling Chaos post about planning, I was going to clear out everything, pack it up or put it in a designated spot, clean the empty space and then divide all the items I pulled out into items I want to keep, sell/donate or trash. For such a small area I sure do have a lot of stuff.

My plan was to post before, during and after pictures to go along with each blog post but that did not pan out this time. I do have some pictures though!

Here is what I started with. My computer, tons of pens/pencils, computer cords, folders and files of paper that need to be filed and random stuff I have not used in a long time.

IMG_20150508_172605

My first step was to pull everything out and clean all the surfaces. I put everything in a pile to be separated later.

IMG_20150508_184022 IMG_20150508_184053 IMG_20150508_184041Once I had everything separated I started going through it all. The 2 white containers are still filled and on my to do list but I went through the 3 drawer container and tested each pen and marker. I ended up throwing out a lot that were dry. I also saved a whole bunch of pencils to give to my nephew and highlighters for my step sister. I also have a lot of folders I’m going to see if my step sister needs for school. I’d consider that donating.

I went through that big pile of stuff to figure out what I wanted to throw away and what I wanted to donate/sell. There were a few items of paper in there that I need to file away so that went into a different pile for now. One of the hardest things has been going though my computer games. I am keeping a few but it was incredible hard to put my old sims games in a box to throw away. Most of those games are not sell-able and it hurts to just throw them away. It’s like the memories that I associate with these items are going to go away, but I know they won’t. 

After I separated all my left over stuff, that left me with a box of items to sell/donate, items that need to be relocated to my craft room and filed away. Once I was done doing through all my stuff I started to fill my computer area with a few of the essentials I decided to keep. Unfortunately I was left with a very empty desk area and I did not like this look AT ALL. There is some part of me that likes empty space because it looks clean but with all the white I have in my living room, it just feels wrong.

I took a few days to figured out what I wanted to do and what direction I wanted to go in. My living room originally was supposed to be blue, green and white. Now that it’s been 4 years since I bought my townhouse, not much has been updated or added to. I still have mostly bare walls, a few green knick knacks here and there and my one big blue wall. I love my big blue wall so I needed something that would go with that. I mean that’s not hard. What doesn’t go with blue??

Hmm what to do?? Sooooo I might have been having a “I’m getting old, I probably shouldn’t do this” idea but I want to base all the rooms in my house subtly off Disney princesses.

I’m not really sure where this idea came from or how I can pull this off but I immediately got on pinterest and searched out something that would catch my eye. This is turning into a living room project and not just the computer are but I needed to have a plan in order to coordinate accordingly. I don’t have an idea how to make this idea work for other parts of my house but for my living room I’m inspired by Beauty and the Beast.

Why you might ask? I have TONS of books. Yes I will go through them and work my minimalism magic but I love books. I love to read and the living room is where most of them are stored, besides my bedroom. I also have some pretty neat looking old classics that I can use as decoration as well as reading them. My living room also includes my dining area and Beauty and the Beast gives me a lot of ways to spruce up my dining room. Like I said before, I want to keep it subtle. Subtle and simple are really not my strong suits. I tend to do more than I should because I want to it be amazing!

This has been very hard for me and another reason why I wanted to move towards minimalism. It’s been difficult clearing out all the items on my computer desk, separating my goods into piles to throw away, donate or sell and keeping my redecorating simple. I mean the ideas I had…I had to battle myself and step back. I like what I did and in another post I’ll go over what and how I did it. I present my finished computer area! Now to keep it nice and clean. 🙂


IMG_20150525_151618 IMG_20150523_220523 IMG_20150525_151627

 

Tiffany – The Tangled Taurus

Empty Space

I’ve been a little preoccupied lately and forgot to do a blog post. I even forgot to send a mother’s day card. I did call her, I’m not a bad daughter! I made up for it though. I sent a mother’s and father’s day card with an AMC theater gift card for a movie date night. I think that will do. 🙂

So what’s keeping me busy? Honestly it’s cleaning but I set myself up for some trouble. I need to read like 5 books in the next 2 weeks and have been attempting to minimalize my home. I also just celebrated my 30th birthday, that has been weighing on me and I’m going on a mini vacation at the end of the month. Just a lot happening for me this month and while I know I need to start cleaning up my life sooner rather than later, it’s just kind of catching up to me.

On Saturday my friend and I did dinner and a movie. We do this every year for my birthday and with all the amazing movies that come out in May, seeing a good one is easy. Now I’m a planner, not sure if you have picked up on that while reading this blog but I am. I decided on a time and place to meet my friend. I was running late so she ran in to buy the movie tickets before we went to IKEA. I KNOW when I checked online the movie was playing at the theater but turns out, it was not. Apparently the theater didn’t get the movie and had lots of people trying to see the movie there. The nice attendant told my friend that the movie was playing down the street but it’s earlier than we wanted. We run over to the other theater and buy our tickets and end up skipping IKEA. Totally bummed out because I love IKEA. So my friend and I walk into the theater and this is what we see, not a single person there.

IMG_20150516_143454We went to see Pitch Perfect 2 on a Saturday on its opening weekend. This is an older theater but the new theater was not even playing the movie, what is going on! Well as soon as we sat down, the theater started filling up. My theory, everyone went to the new theater first, because online it said they had it and when it was not showing they were told to go down the street to this one! Fantastic movie by the way, not as great as the first but still fantastic.

I hope to have an updated blog post for my Battling Chaos series soon but it’s taking some time and I’ve run into some problems. Here is the before picture, see what I have to work with!

IMG_20150508_172605

Tiffany – The Tangled Taurus

Battling Chaos v.5 : Hammer out the details

Planning Planning Planning!

Now that I have the reasons for my change I need to create an action plan.  

This week should be used to plan how I’m going to accomplish what I wrote down as my wants and needs.

I have a lot to do and a lot to accomplish if I want to start putting a dent in those need and want lists. I’m going to hit my home in sections see how this works. The list is not set and I may add items to it. (see list below) Once I start getting my home in order I’ll start adding in other aspects of my life I’d like to simplify.

For each area of my home, I’m going to clear out everything, pack it up or put it in a designated spot, clean the empty space and then divide all the items I pulled out into items I want to keep, sell/donate or trash. My plan is to post before, during and after pictures to go along with each blog post.

Home

  1. Computer Area
  2. Fireplace & Tv area
  3. Under the stair storage
  4. Entry way and Coat Closet
  5. Rest of living room
  6. Dining Room & long bookcase behind it
  7. Kitchen, fridge and pantry
  8. Downstairs bathroom
  9. Linen Closet
  10. Laundry Room
  11. Master Bathroom
  12. Master Bedroom
  13. Master Closet
  14. 2nd Bedroom
  15. Car

Life

  1. Create a budget and stick to it
  2. Work towards becoming debt free
  3. Cook more food at home
  4. Exercise more
  5. Make time for reading
  6. Make time for crafts – Knitting, card making, painting

Battling Chaos v.4 : List time!

Why, Wants and Needs

Time to write it all down. I want big whys and wants as well as the small things that I often gloss over. This shouldn’t take long but I decided to take a few minutes and write down my list. I let it sit for a few days and went back over my list to see if I needed to make adjustments.  

WHY: Write down why I’m making this change. Why do I want to live with less? Knowing my whys can be a huge motivator when things get rough.

You might not think knowing and writing down your whys are a big deal but they are the reasons you want to change and can be huge motivational tools.

  • I don’t like my messy house
  • I’m tired of the clutter in my home
  • I’m tired of buying items to reflect myself in a certain light to others instead of things I’m passionate about
  • To create a structured and relaxing home

WANT : What do I want to accomplish? What do I want to get out of minimalism?

Knowing what you want helps you find and develop your passions in life.

  • I want to reduce chaos
  • I want to feel energized
  • I want to focus on my passions
  • I want to find my passions
  • I want to be happy
  • I want my home to stay clean
  • I want my home to be guest ready
  • I want to be proud of myself
  • I want to be healthier
  • I want to find love
  • I want to be stable
  • I want to find myself
  • I want to be financially ready for almost anything
  • I want to feel safer
  • I want to be debt free
  • I want to be more than just good at my passions
  • I want to find my focus
  • I want to be stress free
  • I want to be more social
  • I want to read more
  • I want to exercise more
  • I want to feel good
  • I want to start running 5ks again
  • I want to cook more
  • I want to budget my money better

NEED : What do I think I need from life? What do I think I need to be happy? I’m thinking I might be surprised by the end of this. My needs will either be completely wrong or true.

  • I need stability
  • I need to be happy
  • I need my car
  • I need my home
  • I need my dog
  • I need a creative outlet
  • I need to read
  • I need a way to unwind
  • I need financial freedom
  • I need friends
  • I need family
  • I need structure
  • I need spontaneity
  • I need to eat healthier
  • I need to take care of myself
  • I need to donate more
  • I need to listen more
  • I need to workout more
  • I need to be stronger
  • I need courage
  • I need to find a career
  • I need to focus
  • I need to develop my talents
  • I need to let go
  • I need to be more honest with myself
  • I need to travel more
  • I need to get out of my comfort zone
  • I need to live
  • I need to participate more
  • I need to stick to the financial budget I set

Now that I have my reasons figured out, now onto my next step! I’ll post my plan next.

Tiffany – The Tangled Taurus

Battling Chaos v.3 : My first steps to Minimalism

My Journey to Minimalism

You have to start somewhere right?

My home is a mess! When I get home all I want to do is sleep. On the weekends I don’t want to leave and I don’t want to do anything. This feeling and the way I’m living my life need to change. I need something drastic but gradual enough that I won’t overwhelm myself and give up so I’m turning to a simple way of living, Minimalism.

One of the most used phrases I’ve come across in the search for simplicity is “find a style of minimalism that works for you”. This is exactly what I plan on doing and anyone who is reading this, this is a work in progress. I’ve not completed this journey but instead you will get to come along for the ride! Sounds exciting right??

This week I’m going to start by writing down all my reasons for doing this, what I want from life and this change and what I think I need. I’ll post these in a few days.

Tiffany – The Tangled Taurus

Battling Chaos v.2 : Discovering Minimalism

I mentioned in a post the other day that my house is driving me crazy. I have too much stuff and surfaces seem to multiple the crap that goes on them. I’ve also stated about looking into battling this chaos by learning about minimalism. Some of the things I’ve learned from researching minimalism have sort of scared me. I mean I get anxious just thinking of going through my possessions but I like the minimalist idea.

What does minimalism mean?

A minimal policy, style, technique, action, etc. Buying less and doing more. Experience more of life to live a happy life. Understanding what you actually need and living a meaningful life with less stuff. In one word, simplifying.

What I thought minimalism meant.

Before I looked into minimalism, I assumed it was all about stark living, with little to no personality, cold and unwelcoming homes. A person who creates a clean space with little to no distraction or knickknacks and only uses neutral colors. While this may not be inaccurate, it is not necessarily the norm. People who are minimalist can range from extreme to moderate to light.

What will being a minimalist mean to me?

Right now, fear! Fear of the unknown, drastically changing my habits and doing something unknown and out of my comfort zone. Reading some of the minimalist websites seriously gave me anxiety. Sell my house and my car? You want me to pack up my whole house?? I HATE that part of moving. The reason The Minimalists give, I get and fully agree with but still causes me to have a small panic attack imagining myself doing that. Seriously though, pack up my whole house in 1 day? I have way too much stuff! Hence learning about minimalism, but that is beside the point. These are the extreme examples but can you see how that might cause some anxiety? Hopefully the fear will change quickly into something better but that may take some time. Change does not always come easy to me. On this journey I hope I find benefits such as spending less, being more productive, less clutter and chaos and being happier in my home.

I have a long way to go to figuring out how this will work for me and I won’t do it all in one shot. I’m not that dramatic and need to be eased into drastic changes. I got a lot of great information from the resources I linked below and plan to create my own Journey to Minimalism. My next action plan, creating a rough draft Journey to Minimalism guide for myself. I’ll post my first step soon.

Resources:

Tiffany – The Tangled Taurus

A Mad House

My home is stressing me out big time. I’m completely disorganized, messy and I think this might have been a leading cause as to why I felt like crud last week. I walk into my home and my first thought is, oh I just want to sit down, I’m oh so tired. Moments before walking into my home, I WAS feeling pumped and ready to do something productive. What the heck brain???

I’m stuck in an endless cycle. I’m not trying to complain I’m just frustrated with myself. My shoes are scattered in the entry way, the floor needs to be swept and scrubbed. My entry way table has a massive invite, and it’s not picky, to all shapes and sizes of paper. Table : Hey you receipt, wanna join our party? Receipt: F yea, can I bring a few million of my friends and their friends?? Then the mail shows up with books and the whole thing is like a kegger from a teen/young adult movie. Then it migrates to my dinner table and grows!

My personalities are battling it out. My lazy side is winning while my control freak side is somehow whimpering in a corner. Pure frustration. I need to de-clutter, clean and keep up a steady routine in order to find SOME sort of balance. First I’m going to make a list! This list is everything that I need either clean and organize. Lots to do!

List for Downstairs

  • Kitchen : Dishes, counters, fridge, window covering, floors (sweep, scrub & vacuum), sink, oven, & cabinets.
  • Entry : Shoes, floors (sweep, scrub & find a rug), coat closet, & table.
  • Dining Room : Table and floor (vacuum).
  • Living Room : Bookcases (DVD, mini stand for remotes & 2 for books), sofa, chair, coffee table, TV stand, fire place & mantle, desk, wall shelf above desk, knitting area and floor (vacuum).
  • Bathroom : Toilet, sink, mirror, cabinet & floor (sweep, scrub & vacuum).

List for Upstairs

  • Master Bedroom : Laundry, bookcases, night stands, ottoman, bed & floor (vacuum).
  • Closet : Laundry baskets, clothes, storage & floor (vacuum).
  • Master Bathroom : Toilet, sink, mirror, cabinet, over toilet storage, shower & floor (sweep, scrub & vacuum).
  • Hallway : Linen closet, laundry closet, stairs & & floor (vacuum).
  • 2nd Bedroom : Crafts, bookcases, closet & floor (vacuum).

With this list I need to put some of the things I’ve learn from researching minimalist ideals from the books I talked about briefly in my battling chaos post. I’ll talk more about that in Battling Chaos v.2.

Tiffany – The Tangled Taurus

Battling Chaos v.1

Battling Chaos of the home!

For my first blog post, I talked about setting goals for 2015. I’m working on my reading and you’ve seen a few book reviews since then but very little on productivity, with the exception of prepping meals early so I don’t eat fast food. As for productivity, I’ve always had too much stuff for the space I live in. You might ask how this relates to productivity. Well, all this stuff gets scattered and left out and all together chaotic. I walk into my home and get stressed because of all the mess and clutter. I know that not being lazy and just cleaning up would help but I’m thinking I need to be a little more drastic with this first go around. And by drastic I’m thinking minimalist, which I know nothing about but I’m willing to give it a try.

Now I’m not one to dive right in without doing my research so I picked up The Joy of Less: A Minimalist Living Guide : How to Declutter, Organize, and Simplify your Life By Francine Jay & a CD of The Power of Less : the Fine Art of Limiting Yourself to the Essential — in Business and in Life By Leo Babauta from the library. I don’t generally read self help type books but I figured this one would be worth a read since I need to start somewhere and get in the right mind set. I’m thinking this blog post subject is going to be a 3 part, so look for more to come. Wish me luck!

Tiffany – The Tangled Taurus