What Rose Knows http://whatroseknows.com Thu, 08 Mar 2012 19:24:14 +0000 en http://whatroseknows.com/8-30-2016/How-to-Hang-Deck-Lights-With-Poles-/

This post is sponsored by Enbrighten Café String Lights by Jasco. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

How to Hang Deck Lights on Poles #EnbrightenLife

As promised on Instagram, I'm finally getting around to sharing with you all how we hung our deck lights on our newly built deck space. I love the look of cafe lights strung outdoors (and indoors too!) and I have a feeling we are going to be using our deck space right up till winter. Sitting outside during the fall is more enjoyable anyways since you don't have to deal with mosquitos and other flying pests. Now if only burning leaves wasn't hazardous to your health and didn't contribute to pollution. I guess I'll just have to stick with my 100% beeswax or soy naturally scented candles instead. If anyone knows of a beeswax or soy naturally scented candle that smells like burning leaves, let me know! 

How to Hang Deck Lights with Poles #enbrightenlife
Before we get to how to hang deck lights on poles, let's talk cafe lights.

We started out this summer with a set of cafe lights from Costco and although they claim to be weatherproof, they didn't hold up to our windy weather here in Rochester, MN. We'll be taking advantage of Costco's return policy and are now using these Enbrighten Café String Lights by Jasco. These lights have some features that I've never seen before..

How to Hang Deck Lights with Poles #enbrightenlife First off, check out those bulbs. Totally unique looking yet impact resistant. These acrylic bulbs won't break if dropped, stepped on, or during windy weather when one of the bulbs might hit a pole. The bulbs are also LED which reduce energy usage by 95%. Now I won't feel overly guilty about leaving them on when we are not out on the deck. Since these are actually a commercial grade product with a lifetime LED guarantee, you can feel confident leaving them up all year long. 

Now here are two features that I find very appealing. First, you can connect multiple strings! Hello! How awesome is that! It makes SO much sense to be able to do that since everyone's need is different. The heavy-duty, grounded cord plugs into any standard outlet and you can link multiple cafe lights up to 350 ft! 

How to Hang Deck Lights with Poles #enbrightenlife
The second feature that I find super handy is the flexible mounting options. You can hang these cafe lights right to the wall if you want! And since they are LED, you don't have to worry about the heat from the bulbs. 

Now that we've talked about how much I love these Enbrighten Café String Lights by Jasco, let's move on to how to hang deck lights with poles....

How to Hang Deck Lights with Poles #enbrightenlife For the pipe posts we (when I say "we", I really mean my husband did all the work while I stood by observing) used pieces of 1” galvanized steel piping and cut them down to 7’-10” in length.  He then put a thread on one end and left the other end plain (that's the end that sits on the deck).  On the threaded end he put a 1” galvanized cap and then drilled a 3/8” hole about 1” down. 

Then my husband took a fine grit sand paper and an oscillating sander and went over the whole length of the pipe to give it a more polished look.  After that he installed a 5/16”x3” J-Bolt through the hole.  Once the (4) pipes were assembled he used 1” 2-hole straps to attach them to the railing posts. 

How to Hang Deck Lights with Poles #enbrightenlife He ran heavy duty metal cabling in a square around all of the J-hooks attached to the poles so the lights could be strung right to the cable and not just hang from the poles. 

How to Hang Deck Lights with Poles #enbrightenlife
He used wire crimping sleeves to make the loop for the J-bolt. 

How to Hang Deck Lights with Poles #enbrightenlife

If you shop for these items at the hardware store, the crimping sleeves should be right next to the wire. 

We decided on on X pattern for the cable wire that would connect the poles so we could string the lights across the center of the deck. 

I also like the idea of being able to hang paper lanterns or banners from the wire on holidays or for parties! 

We attached the lights to the wire using zip ties. If we do decide to take the lights down this winter, cutting the zip ties will be easy (and it's cheap). But chances are we will leave the lights up year round. 

How to Hang Deck Lights with Poles #enbrightenlife
Because the outlet on our deck is behind our deck furniture, having this GE myTouchSmart plug-in timer is a must! It was such a pain to turn the old lights on and off. With our new timer, we can set custom times, use the preset options, or the custom countdown feature! There is even a 12-hour setting that will turn the lights on at 6pm and off at 6am. 

Enbrighten Cafe Lights

Be sure to enter above to win a $250 Amazon gift card! 

How to Hang Deck Lights On Poles #EnbrightenLife

Tue, 30 Aug 2016 09:02:56 +0000 How to Hang Deck Lights With Poles http://whatroseknows.com/8-30-2016/How-to-Hang-Deck-Lights-With-Poles-/

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBias

DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBias

I think glass stove tops get a bad rap. I know many, many people who swear by their gas cooktop and would never even consider an electric stove but we had a gas range in our last house for 10 years and I personally didn't find anything special about it. I did however hate cleaning the grates. It's just so involved and you have to take so much apart. Ok, ok, I know there are just two steps to taking apart a gas cooktop, but still.

When we built our new house here in Minnesota, we had the option of "upgrading" to a gas stove, but for a non-cookist (yes, totally made-up word) like me, I didn't think having a gas range was worth the extra cost. Plus, the thought of cleaning those grates again just made me ughhhh. 

The biggest complaint with glass cooktops is boil overs. But ya know what? We had our fair share of boil overs with our gas range so it's not like they don't happen on gas cooktops. 

DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBias
So if you have a glass cooktop, this probably looks very familiar. If you have the right tools though, it's actually a breeze to clean up. I swear.

The little bottle of cleaner that comes with your electric range is not part of the right tools. In my opinion it's useless and just makes a big smeary mess.

There is a cleaning paste made by a direct sales company that works awesome. However, it's so stinkin' expensive. Since the ingredients were easy to find and I'm all about DIY cleaners, I recreated the cleaning paste for a fraction of the cost. 

DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBiasWhat you need: 

Pure Castile Soap
Coconut Oil 
Calcium Carbonate (or marble flour if you can find it)
Scotch-Brite® Non-Scratch Scrub Sponge (the blue one)
AND the Scotch-Brite® Heavy Duty Scrub Sponge (the green one - I'll explain what for later on)

If you are not familiar with these products here are a few tips on where to find them: Pure Castile Soap will be located in the beauty section (make-up, body soap, etc) of your natural foods store or here online. Coconut oil can be found pretty much everywhere but if you are more of an online shopper, here is a good selection. Calcium carbonate (powdered) can be found at your local natural food store as well. 

Mix together 1/2 cup of the calcium carbonate, 1 teaspoon of the coconut oil, and 1/2 teaspoon of the Castile soap. The mixture will be dry, lumpy, and not even. That's ok, it's just a cleaning paste. If you want a more even texture, you might have to use your hands to crumble the lumps. Once this all mixed, dribble another 1/2 teaspoon of the Castile soap and mix together. Store in a jar.

DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBiasI purchase my Scotch-Brite™ sponges at Target because they have a great selection and it's pretty often that they are on the Cartwheel app. Target also makes it pretty convenient top shop for Scotch-Brite™ sponges by having them in both the kitchen section on the grocery side and also in the sponge aisle on the home side. 

Scotch-Brite™ is my all-time favorite sponge brand because they have the right tools for every surface. It's really, really important that you use the correct sponge to clean your glass top stove because if you don't, you will probably end up scratching the glass.

 The Scotch-Brite® Heavy Duty Scrub Sponge is used for so many surfaces in your kitchen (pots, pans, sinks), garage (tools, tires), and even the outdoors (grill racks, lawn furniture, outdoor toys). The Scotch-Brite® Non-Scratch Scrub Sponge is perfect to clean non-stick cookware, glass top stoves, counter tops, shower tile, and of course dishes. I also like to use the Scotch-Brite® Non-Scratch Soap Dispensing Dishwand for my non-stick cookware, counter top corners, and cook top. 

DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBiasTo clean your glass top stove, scoop a little out of the jar and sprinkle all over. If you have a boil over mess, add extra to that area. Wet your blue Scotch-Brite® Non-Scratch Scrub Sponge and use the scrub side to remove the mess. You'll be surprised how well the combination of the cleaning paste and scrub sponge work together! 

DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBiasUse the spongey part of the scrub sponge to wipe everything up. If you have a really tough mess, or an older boil over, you might have to apply more cleaning paste and scrub again. 
DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBias
The result will be a sparkly glass top stove again! 

DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBiasEven if we don't have an accidental boil over on our glass top stove, I have noticed that if we put our pots and pans in the dishwasher, the dishwasher leaves a residue on the bottom of the pots and pans that will then transfer onto the glass top with heat. I'd love to say that we always hand wash our pots and pans, but I'd be lying. 

DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBiasUsing the green Scotch-Brite® Heavy Duty Scrub Sponge, I do always scrub the bottom of our pots and pans because this avoids the transfer of the gray residue to the glass top stove. 

DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste #ScotchBriteSponges #CollectiveBiasThe green Scotch-Brite® Heavy Duty Scrub Sponge works so good you hardly even have to use dish soap. If you have a hard time remembering which sponge is heavy duty and which sponge is non-stick, just remember that "green" is your GO-to for tough messes. DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste
Another tool that I recently picked up during my shopping trip to Target was the Scotch-Brite® Non-Scratch Soap Dispensing Dishwand. This tool will come in handy for my non-stick cookware - and also for cleaning the back of my IKEA Domsjo sink! 

DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste
Whether you love or hate your glass top stove, I promise this cleaning paste and Scotch-Brite™ sponges will make clean-up a breeze! 

Want more cleaning inspiration? Check out other bloggers cleaning tips here!


Mon, 22 Aug 2016 05:53:00 +0000 DIY Glass Stove Top Cleaning Paste http://whatroseknows.com/8-22-2016/DIY-Glass-Stove-Top-Cleaning-Paste-/

DIY queen size wood headboard for under $35It's a good thing my husband was on board with my desire for the majority of the furniture in our home to be upcycled or created by us because when we decided to move our full size guest room mattress into our son's bedroom and replace the guest room mattress with a queen size mattress, he was able to quickly build a simple headboard for under $35.

We've happily had more guests here in Minnesota than we thought we would so upsizing the mattress was a comfort we wanted to provide. I didn't want this to be a huge expense though so I was all for the simplicity of this headboard when I was told it would cost under $35. 

Here is how this very affordable queen size headboard was constructed in just a few short hours (it was maybe even less time!):

Materials used:

(1) 4x4x8'
(5) 1x8x8'
(1) 1x6x8'
Nails (on hand)
Minwax Interior Wood Stain in Ebony (on hand)
Minxwax Polycrylic (on hand)

The 4x4's that we used were Douglas fir because that is what Menards had in stock. The 1x8's and 1x6 were standard quality pine.  The standard quality pine boards are cheaper and tend to have more knots and other imperfections which gives it more character.

DIY queen size wood headboard for under $35He started off by taking the 4x4's and used a table saw to cut a 1½"x1½" notch in it down the length of the board.  Then he cut it into two equal pieces 4' long.  After that he trimmed the 1x8 boards down to the proper length for the width of the queen sized bed.  He cut (5) boards which was enough to fill the space from the top of the headboard to below the top of the mattress.

He then placed the 1x8 boards in the notches of the 4x4 so they had a nice recessed place to be fastened to.  After the boards were mounted to the 4x4's he used a scrap piece of wood on the backside of the 1x8's in the vertical position and nailed it to the 1x8's.  This was just to keep the boards from shifting or warping over time.  He also used a staple gun on the backside of the 1x8's to help hold them together at the joints.

Once that was done he took the 1x6 board and cut it to 2" wider than the overall width of the headboard and attached it to the top with the nail gun.

DIY queen size wood headboard for under $35After it was all assembled he gave it a once over with a heavy grit sand paper to knock down any rough edges that fabric could catch on and then gave it a coat of dark stain and then a few coats of Minwax Satin Polycrylic to seal it and make it smooth.

DIY queen size wood headboard for under $35He then mounted it to the bedframe with some screws and washers.  It could also be mounted directly to the wall with the bed frame just pushed up to it. Mounting it to the wall with the unattached bed frame would definitely make it easier to move the bed around to clean under it. ;) 

For details on how to make the wall art above the bed, go here.
(Sorry, the giveaway has ended)

DIY queen size wood headboard for under $35Because I have a lot of neutral colors going on in our guest bedroom, I felt the dark ebony stain would break things up a bit and also coordinate well with the curtains and flooring. Lately I've been painting everything white but for this headboard, I wanted a darker stain. Plus, we had the ebony stain leftover from my farmhouse style kitchen table & chairs makeover so that saved on cost as well. 

DIY queen size wood headboard for under $35

The 4x4's give the headboard a sturdy and substantial look without it being too heavy for the space. 

DIY queen size wood headboard for under $35


Gingham chair: IKEA (the only furniture piece in the room that we purchased new)
Lamp: Home Goods / TJ Maxx or here
Sign on nightstand: Gordman's or here
Glass tray: Home Goods / TJ Maxx
Area rug: Hobby Lobby or similar one here
Bedding: Kohl's
Curtains: Walmart

I wanted to make sure our guest room was an inviting space that felt more like a retreat. Whenever I walk in this room, it feels like one to me. :)
This room doubles as my office so I try and keep my desk as neat and tidy as possible. That can certainly be challenging at times so thank goodness our guests always give us advance notice. 

Thanks for stopping by! 


Welcome Home Wednesdays
 Merry Monday Link Party

Mon, 1 Aug 2016 17:31:03 +0000 DIY Wood Headboard (under $35) http://whatroseknows.com/8-1-2016/DIY-Wood-Headboard-under-35/

State Fair Foods You Can Make At HomeIt's been years since we've been to the state fair so this year we're hopefully going to get up to the Twin Cities for the Minnesota State Fair. Everyone just raves about the state fair here and now that we've been residents for over a year, I think we need to find out what all the excitement is about. I'm guessing it's all about the food though! 

Here are 10 State Fair foods you can make at home!

Please remember to pin from the original source!

Mexican Grilled Corn On The Cob

My kids have been asking begging for sweet corn these past few weeks so this is a recipe we'll be trying out soon! Get the full recipe here

State Fair Deep Fried Candy Bars

This recipe only uses three ingredients! Get the full recipe here

Wisconsin Cheese Curds

Being from Wisconsin, I think I've had quite a few of these at the Wisconsin State Fair over the years! Get the full recipe here

Blueberry Coffee Shake

Ok, so maybe you won't find this one at the state fair, but according to Nellie Bellie, this is a Minnesotan favorite. I'm just adding it into this post because it looks easy to make, and coffee. Get the full recipe here.

Baked Deep Fried Oreos

Here is another recipe that only requires a few ingredients. And they are baked so you don't have to feel nearly as guilty for indulging! ;) Get the full recipe here

County Fair Funnel Cakes

This is my most favorite thing to eat at the fair. No one needs to see me eating the entire thing by myself though so I'll just make it at home instead. Get the full recipe here

Quick and Easy State Fair Lemonade

This recipe gives you the perfect excuse to go shopping at Home Goods/TJ Maxx so you can pick up a cocktail shaker. Get the full recipe here

Copycat State Fair Cookies Recipe

If there is one Minnesota State Fair food I hear about constantly, it's Sweet Martha's Cookies! Haley over at Cheap Recipe Blog has the full recipe for you here.

On a side note, and completely opposite of all the foods in this post, check out all of her paleo recipes

Maple Chocolate Bacon Skewers

This recipe is easier than it looks! Get the full recipe here

Elephant Ears Recipe

I don't even know how long it's been since I've had an elephant ear and quite honestly I forgot about them! Now I can't stop thinking about them! Get the full recipe here

So tell me, what are your favorite state fair foods? 

State Fair Foods You Can Make at Home!


Wed, 20 Jul 2016 10:00:33 +0000 State Fair Foods You Can Make At Home http://whatroseknows.com/7-20-2016/State-Fair-Foods-You-Can-Make-At-Home/

Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post, however I did receive products for my review. All opinions are my own and not influenced in any way.

Tropical Moscato SmoothieNow that our new deck space is complete and the weather is nice, we've finally been able to spend some time out there. Holy heck does it get hot out there with the space being on the south side of the house - and I love it. I've already got a decent summer tan going on and every time I step out there, I feel like I'm on vacation. I have zero desire right now to "get away" and go on vacation. I want to vacation right here at home and spend time relaxing out on the deck, explore our new state of Minnesota, and hang out with our new friends. 

I've been seeing a ton of fun adult drinks on Pinterest lately and I wanted to try out something with fruit and wine. Although I prefer beer, when I do drink wine, I definitely fancy Moscato. 

Glass and disposable drinkware isn't going to cut it for entertaining out on our deck. Glass sweats and will heat up in the sun and disposable cups are not sturdy enough and could easily blow over. It gets pretty windy out on the deck since Rochester, MN is considered the 2nd windiest city in America according to Weather.com

Tropical Moscato SmoothieI recently received an awesome set of Tervis drinkware for summer (and year round!) entertaining! You guys - this is quality drinkware that is Made In America and comes with a Made For Life guarantee! I could tell a difference right away when I opened the box that these are going to last! Tervis products have double wall construction and keep cold drinks colder longer and hot drinks hot. 

The tumblers and wine glasses that I received are all dishwasher safe since they are ultrasonically sealed. The ice bucket features a permanent gasket seal and removable parts so that will need to be hand washed. 

Tervis products
Tervis offers a huge selection of products and most are customizable! I'm already eyeing up that water bottle that is front and center in the image above! Now thru 6/15/16, you will receive 15% off your order purchase when you go HERE and use promo code ROSE at checkout. Shipping is free on purchases of $49 or more. 

Tervis Custom DesignYou can really go all out when customizing and personalizing your Tervis products. Their easy to use website even allows you to add photos from Instagram and Facebook. Finally there is a quality option for personalized water bottles. We often see options for personalized travel coffee mugs so it's nice to have a product for those non-coffee drinkers in our life (can you believe people like that actually exist?!). 

Tropical Moscato SmoothieWhen I was deciding on what to call this drink, I had no idea what the difference between a slushie and a smoothie was so I turned to Google. Now I know; a smoothie is made with fruit and a slushie is made primarily with ice. 

(Easy) Tropical Moscato Smoothie Ingredients:

Moscato (your choice!)
Frozen mango chunks
Frozen pineapple chunks
Whipped coconut topping (optional)


Simply add Moscato and equal parts mango and pineapple to a blender and blend until smooth. You may have to add either more Moscato or the frozen fruit depending on what consistency you prefer. Top with the whipped coconut and enjoy! Easy peasy!  

Tropical Moscato Smoothie

Be sure to go HERE to check out the huge selection of Tervis drinkware products!

And don't forget to use promo code ROSE at checkout for 15% off your entire purchase.

Tropical Moscato SmoothieInstead of using a pitcher to serve your smoothie, you can use the Tervis ice bucket. Just add a ladle to serve. The ice bucket lid will keep those pesky bugs out that your guests will appreciate. And if the ingredients start to separate, you can use the ladle to mix it all together. 

Tropical Moscato SmoothieI hope you are all having a great start to your summer! My summer has already started out to be quite enjoyable and I just know it's going to last all season. :) I'm headed in to have knee surgery tomorrow so part of my summer will be spent recovering. It's a good thing we have our new deck with comfy furniture for me to lay on. And now I have this new Tervis drinkware to keep my water as cold as the ice packs that will be on my knee. Once I'm done with the pain meds though, I'll probably be putting something else besides water in them. ;) 



Wed, 8 Jun 2016 05:29:32 +0000 Tropical Moscato Smoothie + New Tervis Drinkware http://whatroseknows.com/6-8-2016/Tropical-Moscato-Smoothie-New-Tervis-Drinkware/

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetI'm super excited to share with you all our new deck space and how we furnished it (thus far) on a budget. Deck and patio furniture and decor can be so expensive and when you live in the upper midwest the time spent on your deck or patio can be iffy. We don't spend loads of money on anything (besides ground beef - I refuse to buy ground beef unless it's 100% grass-fed and finished), so like everything else I purchase, I shopped around. 

Retailers make it very easy to walk in a store or shop online and purchase entire outdoor seating sets with everything you need including coordinating pillows, outdoor rugs, drink glasses, end tables, decor and anything else you can think of to make your outdoor space welcoming. That can get so expensive - and I definitely don't shop like that. I prefer to shop the sales and trust myself when it comes to coordinating everything. And for this space, I decided to go in a completely opposite direction of the decor in our home and use bright modern colors. I also forbade myself from using anything rustic, aged, or vintage. 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetThe largest expensive for this space was of course the modular seating set. Modular seating can get really pricey depending on where you shop and if you want seating for a lot of people, it can get really, really expensive. I just about gave up on finding affordable modular seating until I found this ARHOLMA series at IKEA. This is true modular seating where you can change up the sections in countless ways since each piece is separate. I also like that the cushion covers are removable and machine washable like my IKEA EKTORP living room furniture. We were fortunate enough to be able to purchase this set when everything was 15% off making the cost right around $700. That price even included the seat cushions and back cushions that are sold separately giving you color options. After all was said and done, it was still the most affordable set of this size. And just like our EKTORP living room furniture, this modular outdoor seating is sooo comfortable. A few naps have already occurred on this set! 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetThe biggest difference (besides price) between this IKEA set and other sets you can find at other retailers is that each piece has to be assembled. For those of you that don't have any experience shopping at IKEA, they keep labor and shipping costs down with condensed packaging and products you assemble at home and they then pass those savings to the consumer by offering a lower price than most big box stores. 

In the future we plan on purchasing a small propane fire pit so we'll move the stools that are currently being used as a coffee table to one of the ends of the sofa to make a chaise lounge. I'll only have to add the seat cushions! We know fire pits are deeply discounted at the end of the season so that is one item that we will wait on to purchase. 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetOn the coffee table I have LED lanterns that I purchased at Menards for under $5 each on sale. We recently ordered a huge Suncast vertical deck storage box for cushion storage so my plan is to move the lanterns to the top of the deck box since it is flat and bar height. The large tray was only $8 at Shopko during their recent friends and family sale. This tray will come in handy to place drinks on. 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetFairy gardens seem to be the trend right now, and as adorable as they are, I prefer gnomes. One of my favorite books as a kid was "Gnomes" by Wil Huygen (I still have this book too!) and I used to read this book over and over. So when I saw this adorable Tiny Forest Friends Gnome Garden Statue Collection from Design Toscano, I had to add it to our deck space because it added just the whimsy I was looking for! Right now you can get it for 20% off when you go here and use promo code CJMEMO16 thru 5/30. If you missed this date, don't worry, just visit the Design Toscano site and I'm sure there will be a new discount code for your purchase! 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetThis Tiny Forest Friends Gnome Garden is a lot larger than I thought it would be and my favorite part is that you can move each gnome wherever you want. I plan on leaving it right there on the coffee table for when my friends come over with their little ones so they can play with it. The base (log) measures 15½"dia. x3½"H and weighs 9 lbs so I'm not worried about it being bumped or falling off the coffee table.New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetI do plan on adding a few draping succulents because any plant that thrives on neglect, I can rock. ;) 

This Tiny Forest Friends Gnome Garden set is a Design Toscano exclusive so it's a great addition to your porch, deck, or garden space if you are looking for something unique. Design Toscano has a huge selection of garden statues too so be sure to peek around their site

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetThese next two months we're going to have 2 rather large parties between my daughter's high school graduation party and also my 40th birthday party that my husband is planning (no surprises for me - I don't like them!) so the more seating we can get on the deck, the better. Shopko had these Newport Sling Stack Chairs for $19.99 and I purchased them during the Shopko Friends & Family sale saving an additional 20% off. The coordinating metal stool was on sale for $29.99 also. 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetI picked up this ceramic bowl at a thrift store for only $4 and added the mini succulents for only $1.99 each at Menards. $16 for a succulent garden isn't too shabby!

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetAnother item that can get pretty pricey if you don't shop around is outdoor area rugs. Sure, you can pick up a basic plain black or green outdoor rug for around $20 but that's just not my style and I did want something with multiple colors and a pattern. Not only do outdoor area rugs look pretty when anchoring a seating area on a porch or deck, they make it more comfortable for bare feet when the hot sun is out. 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetI went with this Ikat Blue outdoor rug from Target and purchased it when it was on sale for $45. Of course I used my Target Red Card and saved an additional 5%. 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetI really lucked out when I found these Solarium outdoor pillow 2-packs at Costco for only $14.99. You can't get any cheaper than $7.50 for an outdoor pillow of this size (20"x20")! I wish I could guide you to these pillows on Costco.com but I had no luck finding them so the next best thing is sending you here

So this is what we have so far for our new deck space. Since these photos were taken, we've added deck lights, also from Costco, and tonight my husband is putting together the massive deck box that we will be using to store the cushions. We're most likely going to be moving things around in order to find the best spot for the grill and deck box. Currently the grill is against the house and has to be pulled away from the house when it's in use. 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetHere in Minnesota, code requires a handrail that your hand can fit around so instead of using a traditional handrail, we decided on 1" galvanized pipe and I love the way it turned out! The poles that are holding up the deck lights are also the 1" galvanized pipe and I'll be sure to post about how we did that soon! 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetHere is a picture of our almost finished deck! I say almost finished because my husband already has plans on adding a small pergola on the front and hanging our hammock from it. 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetThis deck was only in our budget because my husband built everything by himself with the exception of a friend digging the holes for the footings. We're guessing if we had someone come in and build it for us, it would have cost $8 - $10,000. What you see here ended up being a little less than $3,000 with all materials purchased from Menards and it took him right around a week to complete. 

We used AC2 CedarTone Premium Pressure Treated Decking from Menards because we're completely ok with maintaining the wood over the years. We used composite deck boards on our last deck in WI and those boards still needed maintenance after a few years like power washing. Plus, a deck this size made of composite boards would have been way out of our price range.

My husband used the KREG Deck Jig to install the deck boards to give a hidden fastener look (this works on both both solid wood and composite decking). 

He also used the KREG 2" deck screws to attach the boards and also the spindles since they have a smaller profile head than a standard screw and are roughly the same price. One container of deck screws contains 700 screws is enough to do a 12’x12’ deck, but because our deck was a little larger we ended up using 2-1/2 containers.

He also used the KREG K4 Pocket Hole System to attach the boards between the posts and the railings to hide any screw heads / holes from sight on the deck.  With using the Kreg pocket hole system and deck system you have to look really hard to find any screw heads / holes on the deck. 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A BudgetRemember the farmhouse table and benches that used to be in the kitchen? It's now in it's new home on the lower deck. :) 

Thanks for coming by and reading about our new deck space and decor on a budget! I hope I was able to guide you to some retailers that can help you make your deck and patio space look pretty without overspending! 

New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A Budget

Tue, 24 May 2016 13:44:25 +0000 New Deck Space | Deck Decor On A Budget http://whatroseknows.com/5-24-2016/New-Deck-Space-|-Deck-Decor-On-A-Budget/

Reclaimed Wood and Black Pipe TV StandAfter many, many, many months, I'm finally making good on the promise to post more pictures and details about our reclaimed wood & black pipe tv stand. Whenever I post a glimpse of our tv stand on social networking, I'm always asked questions about it. The reason why it's taken so long for me to finally do this might seem silly....

Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV Stand
Do you see those cords?! They are A MESS. 
I'm so embarrassed that they were like this for the past 9 months. And there was no way I could take pictures of the tv stand from different angles without the cords showing. Surely the cords would have been a distraction in the photos and would have taken away from the beauty of the tv stand. 


Between not being able to find a good spot for the tv antenna (we're cable free) and all of the cords just hanging there, something had to be done about that cord situation. Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV StandJust look at that cord disaster! Look at it! Last weekend I pulled the tv stand away from the wall to vacuum under it (Sam is shedding like crazy right now!) and the next thing I knew I was on my way to Menards to find a solution for my cord problem. 

Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV StandThe solution I came up with was to put thumb screws into the mounting bracket holes on the back of the tv so there was something to wrap the cords around. I also purchased Command mini adhesive hooks to mount the antenna to the back of the tv. Not the prettiest solution, but at least I no longer have cords hanging all over.  

Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV StandFor one of the cords that was just too short to wrap around the thumb screws, I wrapped it around pipe. Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV Stand

To hide the remaining cords I used some of my old books. Can you believe I paid $1 each (or less) for those old books at an antique store in St. Charles, MN?! Some of them date back to the 1800's and have writing in them from the original owners. So cool. 

Reclaimed Wood and Black Pipe TV Stand
Now I can share our reclaimed wood & pipe tv stand without embarrassment. :) 

Reclaimed Wood and Black Pipe TV Stand
I was afraid the wrapped cords around the thumb screws would be visible from the side of the tv, but the tv is so close to the wall that you'd have to put your head right next to the wall to see them.

Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV Stand
And seriously, if your head is up against the wall looking at the cord situation behind my tv, just...go home. 

Reclaimed Wood and Black Pipe TV StandSo now that I shared with you how I hid the cords behind our tv stand, I'll share the details of the tv stand itself. This tv stand happened to be another combined creation between myself and my husband. Just like all of the other projects we've created in our home, the idea for the tv stand was something I thought up in my head and shared with him as best I could either verbally or with an awful sketch. He is then able to create and build these ideas tweaking them along the way. 

Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV StandSome women get excited over purses or shoes. Maybe even diamond earrings or free babysitting. For me, it's antiquated items for our home and vacuum cleaners (gosh I love a good vacuum). The old growth reclaimed wood that we used for the tv stand was found at Used Anew, LLC in Sparta, WI. I think my husband and Larry, the owner of Used Anew, LLC turned almost every single one of the boards over for me to approve (or refuse). 

Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV StandUsed Anew, LLC is a reclaimed wood gold mine. In addition to reclaimed wood, you will find reclaimed doors, windows, corrugated tin, and more. My husband stumbled across Craigslist postings for Used Anew, LLC. and it's now our go-to stop for reclaimed wood. We used to get our reclaimed wood from my Amish friend Henry at his shop, H&L Rustic Reclaim, but not being able to go there on Sundays made it a bit difficult for us. With Used Anew, LLC., all we have to do is call Larry ahead of time, even if it's later in the day on Sunday, and he can usually make it work. 

TV stand details:

Reclaimed Wood and Black Pipe TV StandThe tv stand measures 57 1/2" in length, 20" wide, & 28" tall and the supplies used were:

(2) 1" black pipe 4'-2" in length (the length will vary depending on your needs)
(8) 1" threaded floor flanges
(6) 1" black threaded tees
(2) 1" black threaded unions
(4) 1"x1' nipples
(12) 1"x4" nipples
(2) 1" 2-hole strap (4 shown, only 2 used)

Not shown (used for middle shelf):

(2) 1" threaded caps
(2) 1" threaded elbows
(2) 1" threaded floor flanges
(2) 1"x5" nipples
(2) 1"x 11" nipples

You can find threaded pipe and fittings at your local hardware store (we like Menards here in the Midwest) or you can even order online from online retailers like Amazon.com.

Here are some tips from my husband for planning out the pipe frame of your piece:

- Pick a pipe diameter that compliments the overall size of the piece and the thickness of the wood you are going to use.  You don’t want to pick a 1/2” pipe to build a large piece of furniture since it will make it look like the piece isn’t balanced.

- With threaded pipe you need to keep working in a line so if you start at one point and need to tie back into that you will need a threaded union which allows you to tie two pieces together.

- For attaching the wood to the pipe you can buy threaded pipe flanges which give you a flat mounting surface and four holes to screw the pieces together.

- For the feet or base you can also use pipe flanges or get creative and use pipe couplings or use a threaded reducer (or increaser in this case) to give it another look.

- Depending upon the size of your piece you may need to cut pipe to length.  Most hardware stores carry pipe nipples in lengths from 1.5” to 12” long and then 10’ or 20’ pieces of pipe to cut to fit.  Some stores will cut the pipe and thread it for you, but if you can’t find a place to do this you can always use pipe nipples and threaded couplings to make longer pieces.

Shop around for the fittings and compare prices for galvanized and black fittings.  They are going to get painted so no worries about the different finishes.  Galvanized is generally more expensive, but for some fittings you may luck out and find them cheaper in galvanized than in black. 

Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV StandFor assembling the pieces together use a pipe wrench and give the fittings a few turns tighter than hand tight. You can go hand tight, but the piece feels much more solid when the pipe is tightened into the fitting all the way.

Black pipe and fittings are usually oily so clean them with a degreaser prior to painting them.  A few coats of flat black spray paint is all they will need. 

Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV StandUse felt pads under the floor flanges so you can easily move the tv stand for cleaning (and because depending on the size of the top, the stand can be very heavy in the end). 

Reclaimed Wood and Black Pipe TV StandFor the bottom shelf, the piece of wood is just resting on the pipe. Since we don't have little kids running around on a regular basis, I wasn't too worried about the shelf falling down. If anyone is going to knock it down, it would probably be me when I'm cleaning it. 

And speaking of cleaning it, I find the best way to clean reclaimed wood is to use a vacuum nozzle with a dusting attachment. Before you bring reclaimed wood into the house though, I highly suggest you seal it with Minwax Polyacrylic.  

Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV StandOne thing you have to keep in mind when working with reclaimed wood is that you will find irregularities in the wood. This is what gives the wood it's character and charm. As you can see above, the thickness of the reclaimed beam that we used for the top of the tv stand was different from end to end - most likely due to aging. The beam was cut in half and then each piece was butt up against each other. We used a Kreg pocket hole jig to attach both pieces together. The difference in thickness is only noticeable on one end so that end faces the corner of the room. 

Reclaimed Wood and Pipe TV StandThat end also exposes bolt impressions and cut marks in the wood and character like this cannot be mimicked. 
Reclaimed Wood and Black Pipe TV Stand
Old growth lumber used to construct barns a century ago with its bolt holes, discolorations, and splits has been air dried for years and years and will give any piece of furniture a handsome and sturdy look. If you want to add rustic charm to your home, look for old growth reclaimed wood. 

Reclaimed Wood and Black Pipe TV Stand
Reclaimed wood adds instant warmth to any room and I'm so happy this beautiful wood ended up in our living room and not in a burn pile or landfill. 

I'll soon be sharing the details of our factory cart coffee table as well as the reclaimed wood & black pipe bookshelf that we also have in our living room. :) 

I was featured at Creativity Unleashed!

The Happy Scraps
21 Rosemary Lane

Tue, 3 May 2016 07:24:13 +0000 Reclaimed Wood & Black Pipe TV Stand http://whatroseknows.com/5-3-2016/Reclaimed-Wood-Black-Pipe-TV-Stand-/

Painted Dresser MakeoverIf you haven't noticed yet, I seem to have a slight obsession with white painted furniture. Between my painted farmhouse style kitchen table and chairs and my Menards chalk painted desk, plus all of the other painted white furniture in our home I have yet to share with you all, white seems to be my thing. It's classic, clean, and versatile. In some rooms in can look elegant and polished and in others it can look casual and even handcrafted. 

When we moved into our new house last summer, we sold, gave away, and donated more than half of our possessions. I can't imagine ever going back to having any kind of clutter in our home again. I got real serious about minimizing my wardrobe at that time too. Why I bothered to keep clothes that didn't fit or that I never wore was beyond me. I'm not big into fashion and I don't work a full-time job outside of the home, so there is no reason for me to have a large wardrobe. Having a smaller wardrobe made it easier to go looking for a dresser for our bedroom since I wasn't looking for that much storage space. We sold our bedroom furniture when we moved from Wisconsin, and I was determined to have mostly unique pieces of furniture in our new house, so I looked at rummages, on Craigslist, and frequented furniture consignment stores for the perfect (to me) dresser. 

Painted Dresser MakeoverAnd I did find the perfect dresser - at Karma Consigments in SW Rochester, Minnesota. The size was perfect, the mirror was perfect, the drawer slides were in excellent condition, and the curved top drawers gave it a somewhat vintage look. I paid $225 which seemed a bit steep, but I knew that I was pressing my luck if I were to walk away from it - especially since it was in great condition. 

Painted Dresser MakeoverThis dresser needed very minimal prep work since it was in such good condition. I only had to remove the mirror, swivel frame and drawer pulls and knobs. I wiped the entire piece down including inside and underneath to remove any dust that was hiding. 

Painted Dresser MakeoverI left the mirror for my husband to remove since he's much more careful with things like that. Chances are I would have broken the mirror when trying to remove it from the frame. 

Painted Dresser MakeoverInstead of replacing the knobs and drawer pulls, I spray painted them with a matte black spray paint. This was definitely the most cost effective way to update the hardware. 
Painted Dresser MakeoverI didn't want to take a chance with using just any chalk paint on this dresser so I went with a reliable brand - Annie Sloan (Pure White). I find Annie Sloan paint to be thinner than other brands which is nicer to work with because it doesn't clump. It goes on smooth and covers evenly. After 2 coats of paint, when it was completely dry, I used a fine grit sandpaper to lightly sand the edges for a minimally distressed look. 

Instead of using Minwax Polycrylic like I normally do on painted furniture, I used the Annie Sloan Clear Soft Wax. For a piece of furniture that will see more wear and tear (like a desk or nightstand), I would suggest using the Minwax Polycrylic. Annie Sloan Clear Soft Wax leaves a very soft sheen, and that is just the look I was going for. However, remember that wax is a short-term seal and does not protect furniture like the Minwax Polycrylic. 

Painted Dresser Makeover

Turned out pretty, huh? :)

It's definitely one of the projects I'm most proud of. 

Painted Dresser Makeover
I think I made the right decision keeping the old hardware and updating them with matte spray paint. 

Painted Dresser Makeover
I think my favorite thing about lightly distressed furniture is that if I do scratch or knick it in the future, chances are no one will notice. 

Painted Dresser Makeover


Painted Dresser MakeoverLet me take just a second to talk about this lamp. I found it at Salvation Army in NW Rochester for only $3.50 (I only remember this price because the sticker is still on the base of the lamp as you can see in the first image of this post - ha ha!) and it didn't have a shade. I wanted to find a shade to go with it originally but after it sat in our room for months and months with just a light bulb, I realized that all it needed was a new  vintage style Edison bulb. 

Painted Dresser MakeoverAnd just like the dresser, this lamp turned out to be perfect as well. :) 

Thanks for stopping by and reading all about my painted dresser makeover. If you're contemplating some furniture painting, I promise you that you will not mess it up and it's so much easier than it looks and sounds. For some people (like myself), it can be very relaxing and calming. Not to mention rewarding. :) 

Fri, 29 Apr 2016 10:01:32 +0000 Painted Dresser Makeover http://whatroseknows.com/4-29-2016/Painted-Dresser-Makeover/

Kirkland's Lamps

Usually when people think of updating a room or giving it a new look that doesn't cost a lot, they think of changing out throw pillows. While that is a great option, I think changing out the lamps in a room make a much bigger statement. Especially if you decide to go with something that is a different width, height, color, and finish. If you are like me and like to make changes to your home without spending a boatload of money, the following table lamps below from Kirkland's are great options for your home no matter what your decor style your is - especially since the lamp shades are included (those can get so costly!). Plus, when you join the Kirkland's K Club, you will earn 1 point for every $1 spent and receive a $10 reward for every 300 points earned. On top of all that, you can use their Spin to Win app (iTunes or Google Play) and use a new coupon every single day!

|Dynia Gold Crackle Mercury Glass Table Lamp| Who doesn't love mercury glass? Even though I went with a rustic look in our living room, I wanted to add a bit of sparkle and shine and the way I did that was with a mercury glass table lamp. The gourd style base of this Dynia lamp from Kirkland's is suitable for both living rooms and bedrooms. We don't often see gold mercury glass either so if you are looking to add a little pizazz to your space that's not over the top, this is a great choice. 

|Spa Blue Fluted Gourd Table Lamp| If you've been shopping for home decor recently, I'm sure you have seen the latest trend - beach and coastal decor. The foolproof way to achieve this look is by using soft blues, greens, and turquoise colors. This Spa Blue Fluted Gourd lamp is a great way to bring in the soft blue color that works so well with beach and coastal decor without your design theme being overkill. 

|Gold Palm Leaf Table Lamp| An unexpected design element that is commonly used in coastal and also beach decor is the use of metallics. Whether golden or silvery, they both look amazing with the light blues, greens, and turquoise colors. This Gold Palm Leaf lamp will definitely add a bit of glamour to your space! 

|Regal Gold Metal Table Lamp| For those of you who have fallen in love with brass, this Regal Gold Metal lamp is for you. The layered candlestick base gives it a traditional look and would look fantastic in a room painted with darker colors. The contrast would be stunning! 

|Zeller Mercury Glass Table Lamp| The geometric shape of this Zeller Mercury Glass lamp is so unique and the sheen of the ivory linen shade is just beautiful. This lamp is perfect for modern decor. 

|Sandy Blue Glass Table Lamp| This Sandy Blue Glass lamp is by far my favorite! I think the soft green/blue color is stunning and will soften the look of any room. I'm considering these for the nightstands in our room for sure! 

Kirkland's Table LampsI'd love to hear which lamp is your favorite! 


Mon, 25 Apr 2016 11:46:24 +0000 Brighten Your Space with New Table Lamps http://whatroseknows.com/4-25-2016/Brighten-Your-Space-with-New-Table-Lamps/

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsI'm super excited to share with all of you my latest project because it's been something I have been planning since last fall. As much as I loved the large farmhouse table that we scored for a super good deal at an Amish auction last summer, I have plans for it in another area of our house (you can see that table and the benches here). In the next few weeks we're going to be starting our deck and I'm eager for that to happen because it's going to be an extension of living space (for a month or so out of the year since we do live in Minnesota - har har har). Our new deck space will have an upper and lower deck and my plan right now is to use the old rectangular farmhouse table and benches on the lower part of the deck. With our daughter's high school graduation party coming up, having the farmhouse table and benches will be great for extra seating. And just a month after that I turn 40 so we might just need extra seating for another party. :) 

These past few months I have been keeping watch on Craigslist and Facebook for a used kitchen table and chairs. I knew I wanted a pedestal table and I knew I wanted 6 chairs. I occasionally found sets that I was interested in purchasing and ended up disappointed because they were either already sold, or the seller never responded to my email. After dealing with that for awhile, my husband suggested buying the table and chairs separate since I had planned on painting them anyways. Duh. Why didn't I think of that?! 

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsSo I ended up purchasing this pedestal table for only $75 and it was just what I was looking for. I'm sure this table looks very familiar to many of you since this shade of stain was all the rage in the 90's. Remember when everyone decorated with country blue and little wooden people and houses that were hand painted from the craft fairs? 

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsThe table top required the most amount of prep work since I wanted to stain the top. The rest of the table top and the pedestal were going to be painted so there was very little prep work involved. That table top was a bit of pain though. First we used a stain stripper and then an orbital sander. My friend Maggie and I took turns using the orbital sander and when our arms got tired, my husband took over and finished it all up. 

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsNow before you send me hate mail about painting these chairs, please understand that they did in fact need a bit of work and look much better in the picture than they did in person. Also, this just isn't my style. When I found these chairs on Craigslist, I had crossed my fingers that they were not already sold. Within an hour or so we were on our way to pick up 5 press back chairs. I know what you're thinking, only 5? Yes, the seller only had 5. Since I love the look of painted press back chairs, and the price was just oh-so-right ($120 for all 5 chairs), I decided on using the 5th chair in the guest room and purchasing 2 additional chairs for when we have guests. I don't feel the need to be matchy matchy (anymore) so I went with black metal cafe chairs which by the way were under $50 each shipped! 

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsOne of the reasons I was drawn to these chairs was the absence of chair back spindles. The thought of painting around those....yuck. The only thing we had to do was remove the hip rests and lightly sand the seats. My husband did also strengthen some of the legs with wood glue and tightened the screws that were loose. 

If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you may remember me posting a couple of the pictures I took while I was in the process of painting. I decided against using chalk paint for this project and instead used a high quality latex paint & primer in one from Menards. I went with a bone color but honestly I can't tell the difference between white and bone. On the chair seats and the table top we used Minwax Interior Wood Stain in Ebony

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsAfter the chair seats were dry, I hand sanded the seats with a fine grit sand paper to remove the sheen because I wanted the chair seats to look worn. In the photo above, the two chair on the left are sanded, the chair on the right is not. 

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsI am so, so, so happy with how it all turned out!

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsI did distress the chairs with a fine grit sandpaper in random areas to give them an aged look but before we sealed the chairs with Minwax Satin Polycrylic Protective Finishes, I brought them inside to the space so I could see in the daylight if any areas needed more paint or more distressing. 

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsNormally I don't like too much distressing on painted furniture, but on these chairs I did want to highlight the press back design by distressing a little extra in that area. 

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsI wanted the table top to be consistently one color throughout so I did not do any distressing. I also wanted the table top to be really dark so we did put several coats of stain on. Once the stain was dry, I lightly sanded the top to remove the sheen from the stain (it was just too glossy). 

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsI did notice that I have a few "oops" spots on the seats by the chair legs. I have a stain marker that I could use, otherwise I think I will use a Q-tip and apply the stain to cover the white spots. It's not too noticeable so I'm not worried about it. :) 

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsIf this is a look you would like to duplicate on furniture that could use some updating, here is a list of supplies that we used:

Orbit Sander

80-Grit Orbit Sander Sandpaper

Stain Stripper

Fine Grit Sandpaper

Minwax Interior Wood Stain in Ebony

High Quality Paint & Primer in One

Minwax Satin Polycrylic Protective Finishes

High Quality Paint Brushes

Disposable Gloves

Old t-shirts cut up in pieces used for staining

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairsA big thanks to my handsome handy husband and my friend Maggie for helping me with this project! Even my 17 year old daughter wanted to help with this project (until a friend called and they left to go shopping....)! This was Maggie's first experience with refinishing and painting furniture and I hope I didn't scare her off from tackling a project of her own. :) 

Farmhouse style painted kitchen table and chairs

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21 Rosemary Lane

Mon, 11 Apr 2016 15:14:07 +0000 Farmhouse Style Painted Kitchen Table and Chairs Makeover http://whatroseknows.com/4-11-2016/Farmhouse-Style-Painted-Kitchen-Table-and-Chairs-Makeover/

DIY Coconut Oil Skincare RecipesEver since my DIY in-shower exfoliating lotions bars turned out to be a success, I've be leaning toward making all of my skincare products at home. Not only is it cheaper, I feel more comfortable knowing what is going on my skin. Pick up a bottle of cleanser or lotion at the store and more often than not, you'll have no clue what most of the ingredients are. After all, your skin is your largest organ and is exposed to enough toxins just by going to the grocery store.

I've been removing my eye makeup and cleansing my skin with coconut oil for a month now and I'm sold. I keep a small bowl of organic virgin coconut oil in my bathroom and right before I wash  my face, I heat up the bowl in the microwave for 15-20 seconds until the coconut oil is melted. At first I was warming chunks of the coconut oil in my hand until it liquified but that was just taking too long for me. The coconut oil removes my eye makeup and foundation and also cleanses my face at the same time (it has antibacterial and anti-fungal properties as well as antioxidants to help with those fine lines and wrinkles). I use the Norwex antibacterial microfiber washcloth to rinse the coconut oil, eye makeup and foundation from my face, and then I smooth more coconut oil over my face again. I wait a few seconds and gently remove it with the Norwex washcloth making sure to not remove it completely since coconut oil is very moisturizing and by the time I grab the towel to pat my face dry, my skin has already absorbed it. 

I plan on incorporating coconut oil into more of my skin care products including my next batch of in-shower exfoliating lotion bars. But I don't want to stop at that so I've come up with a list of DIY coconut oil skincare & more recipe links. Some of the recipes I will probably never use (like the diaper rash cream since I am so done having kids), but it may be a recipe that one of you might want to try! 

Living Well Mom (Lotion Bars)  

Little House Living (Sea Salt Body Scrub)

Simply Shellie (Warm Vanilla Sugar Scrub)

ABC Creative Learning (Eczema Cream)

Living Well Mom (Peppermint Foot Cream)

Goddess In The House (Face Wash)

The Classy Chapter (Face Scrub)

Happiness Is Homemade (Rose Petal Sugar Scrub)

iHeart Naptime (Lemon Sugar Scrub)

Parenting Chaos (Diaper Rash Cream)

Super Mommy Club (Parrafin Wax Treatment)

Scratch Mommy (Foot Salve)

Beauty Bar Online (Moisturizing Lip Balm)

We Know Stuff (Red Wine Body Sugar Scrub)

More Than A Mom Of Three (Cinnamon Coffee Body Scrub)

Everyday Beautiful Blog (Baby Wipes)

The Prairie Homestead (Aloe Vera Face Cream)

Premeditated Leftovers (Peppermint Toothpaste)

Garden Therapy (Lemongrass and Ginger Sugar Scrub)

Hello Glow (Cranberry Lip Scrub)

The Happy Housewife (Peppermint Mocha Lip Scrub)

Mother’s Niche (Coconut Oil and Honey Face Mask)

The Coconut Mama (Calming Magnesium Body Butter)

The Garlic Diaries (Eucalyptus Shaving Cream)

Lulu’s (Coconut Rose Body Scrub)

Savy Naturalista (Vitamin E Infused Body Scrub)

Do you make your own skincare or know of a recipe that others may want to hear about? Leave a comment and tell us about it! 

Sun, 3 Apr 2016 20:18:07 +0000 26 DIY Coconut Oil Skincare & More Recipes http://whatroseknows.com/4-3-2016/26-DIY-Coconut-Oil-Skincare-More-Recipes/

17 Inspiring Sohlouette CraftsI'm excited to share with you all 17 gorgeous craft projects made with the Silhouette craft cutter! I don't personally own a Silhouette craft cutter but one of these days I'm going to take my crafting to the next level when I finally get one of these machines! I think I would end up making a fun new t-shirt for myself every week! 

After you check out the projects below, make sure you pay close attention to how YOU can enter to win your very own Silhouette Cameo!

Pocketful of Posies
Sultry and Saucy One of a Kind DIY DIP Cups

Hobnail House
Silhouette Craft Blog Hop: Cut Vinyl Art Upcycle

In The Loop
How to Create a Silhouette Using the Silhouette Cameo

Craving Some Creativity
Silhouette Project Challenge: Distressed Laundry Room Sign

DIY Passion
Cheeky DIY Tote Bags that will Make You Smile

Domestic Ability
Paper Boxwood Wreath

Our House Now A Home
A Silhouette Giveaway and Creating New Wall Art

My Life From Home
Silhouette Challenge: What's Cooking? Recipe Holder

Holy Craft
How to Use a Photograph to Make a Custom T-Shirt with Your Silhouette

Knock it Off Crafts
DIY Otomi Coasters using a Silhouette Machine and Silhouette Giveaway!

One Project Closer
DIY Princess Party Decorations

Dream Design DIY
Chalkboard Workout Calendar and Silhouette Giveaway

The Country Chic Cottage
Makeup Organizer

Refresh Living
Custom Word Throw Pillows with Vintage Fabric

The Deans List
Scalloped Milk Glass for Valentine's Day

Tried & True
"Life Is Good" Bicycle Lover's Tee

Tastefully Frugal
Valentine's Day/St. Patrick's Day Reversible Sign

Pretty cool projects up there huh? If you are not familiar with the Silhouette, the projects above will definitely give you a good idea of all the fun things it can do and what can be made. There are endless possibilities for your creative ideas!

Through February 11th, you can enter to win your very own Silhouette Cameo on Instagram (yes, an Instagram account is required to enter this contest). Not only will you be entering to win the very coveted Silhouette Cameo, you're also going to add some fantastic Instagram profiles to your feed! All you have to do is start here with my Instagram account. All of the details on how to enter are there. Don't worry, I know it seems a bit wordy, but it's actually quite simple. 


Fri, 5 Feb 2016 16:01:09 +0000 17 Inspiring Silhouette Crafts http://whatroseknows.com/2-5-2016/17-Inspiring-Silhouette-Crafts/


Copycat recipe for in-shower exfoliating lotion bar that will do wonders for dry winter skin! Winter in the Midwest can feel like forever. And it takes a toll on your skin. It's always the backs of my hands and from my knees down that get it the worst. I should probably wear gloves more often and stop going to the gym every day in my workout capris because exposed skin during the winter months is a big no-no. 

A few years ago my youngest sister-in-law introduced me to a store at the mall that specialized in natural body care products. I fell in love with these products, especially their in-shower exfoliating lotion bar, but holy heck that stuff gets expensive. This year, I decided to make my own. 

DIY in-shower exfoliating lotion bar recipe for winter skin! I could have used every single ingredient that is listed on the store's website for the product I was trying to duplicate but honestly, I'm just not that into essential oils. I kept things simple instead with:

You will also need soap molds like these

Why cocoa almonds? Why not! I had them in the house and figured they would add a little more exfoliation since they are drier than raw almonds. Plus, they smell heavenly! I picked up cocoa butter and Shea butter from People's Food Co-op here in Rochester in the bulk food section. 

Copycat recipe for in-shower exfoliating lotion bar that will do wonders for dry winter skin! Before I got started, I set up a makeshift double boiler with the sauce pan filled about halfway with water and placed a shallow glass bowl on top. I turned the stove on medium-low heat. 

I then measured out 3 - 4 oz of cocoa butter and Shea butter using my Polder kitchen scale. I don't think it's quite necessary to use exactly the same amount of butters when making this lotion bar. 

Copycat recipe for in-shower exfoliating lotion bar that will do wonders for dry winter skin! I placed the butters in my makeshift double boiler and they slowly started to melt. I wouldn't worry about mixing the butters while they are melting because they do a pretty good job of melting evenly on their own. 

Copycat recipe for in-shower exfoliating lotion bar that will do wonders for dry winter skin!While the butters were melting on the stovetop, I ground the rice and coco almonds in my NutriBullet. I decided to make this batch with rougher exfoliants by having bigger pieces of rice and almonds. You have to remember that these are the pieces that will fall off in your shower or sink so be prepared to wash them down the drain. For my next batch I will grind everything into small pieces since by then my skin will not need as much exfoliation. 

Copycat recipe for in-shower exfoliating lotion bar that will do wonders for dry winter skin! When the butters are melted, carefully pour them into a smaller container like a glass measuring cup. This will make it easier to pour the mixture into the molds. Add the dry ingredients to the melted butters and mix. At first, the heavier dry ingredients like the almonds will fall to the bottom and the rice will float to the top. The mixture is NOT ready until everything is even. If after you stir everything and there is a layer of butters at the top, the mixture is not ready. You can speed up the process by cooling the mixture in the fridge and stirring it every 5 minutes or so. Be careful not to let it set completely though. However, if this happens, you can easily soften or melt it again in the microwave. 
Copycat recipe for in-shower exfoliating lotion bar that will do wonders for dry winter skin! When the mixture has cooled enough and everything is even, pour it into your choice of molds. I used basic soap molds and a silicone tray mold to make smaller pieces for the kitchen sink. 

Copycat recipe for in-shower exfoliating lotion bar that will do wonders for dry winter skin! Place your molds in the freezer to speed up the hardening process and they should be ready in about 10 minutes. They will easily pop out of the molds when they look shiny!

Copycat recipe for in-shower exfoliating lotion bar that will do wonders for dry winter skin! Now that I know how easy and affordable these are to make, I will never have to feel guilty about spending money at that mall store again! 

Copycat recipe for in-shower exfoliating lotion bar that will do wonders for dry winter skin! One recipe made 3 bars or 1 bar and a tray of 9 mini cubes for me.

I keep the mini cubes by my kitchen sink since when I'm in the kitchen I'm constantly washing my hands. My knuckles and cuticles dry out terribly in the winter and these lotion bars are exactly what they need! 

Wed, 27 Jan 2016 05:58:28 +0000 Copycat LUSH In-Shower Exfoliating Lotion Bars http://whatroseknows.com/1-27-2016/DIY-InShower-Exfoliating-Lotion-Bar-/

DIY Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack I don't mean to brag (too much) but I gotta tell you all that living just over an hour away from IKEA rocks. Before our move to Minnesota last spring, an IKEA trip would have been planned months in advance and would have most likely been an overnight trip. Now, it's nothing for us to decide a day or two in advance that a trip to IKEA in the Cities will happen. And even though we've been there a dozen times in the past year, I still get overwhelmed every time I'm there because the minute I walk in the doors my mind is flooded with ideas. 

So when I was invited by Hickory Hardware and PPG Voice of Color to participate in the IKEA Rast Hack Challenge I accepted immediately because although it's the middle of winter, and we're freezing our butts off here in Minnesota, I knew my handsome handy husband and I could handle it - especially since we sprung for a garage heater when we built our new house. 

After bouncing some ideas back and forth with my handsome handy husband, we decided to turn the IKEA Rast dresser into a vintage apothecary cabinet on casters. 

DIY Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack

I was provided with the RAST 3 drawer dresser and my choice of hardware from Hickory Hardware and PPG Voice of Color. We chose the Windover Antique Caster Assembly and 3 In. Oxford Antique Windover Antique Cup Cabinet Pull. After all of that arrived, the only thing I had to do was visit my local PPG store. Lucky for me, a brand new PPG paint store is opening here in Rochester. The owner Scott was kind enough to invite us into his new store, Prairie Vista Paints located at 1720 2nd Street SW before it officially opens later this week. After we talked a little about the look we wanted to achieve with the RAST dresser, he suggested a few products and we decided on PPG Paints Break-Through! (more on that below). 

DIY Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack The first thing we did was assemble the dresser leaving off the drawer fronts to the drawers because in order to give the dresser an apothecary cabinet look, the drawer fronts needed a slight modification. My handsome handy husband clamped a piece of wood to 1/3 of the drawer width to the fence of the saw blade to give a consistent cut.  Then he set the depth of the blade so that it would only cut about halfway through the wood. This way he was able to get a consistent cut depth and distance on each of the three drawer faces. To give more of a gap between the faux drawer fronts, he moved the piece of wood he had clamped to the fence down an additional blade width and passed the blade through again. This gave about a ¼” overall space between the faux drawer fronts. This could also be accomplished with a table saw or router as well. 

DIY Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack Since the bottom of the dresser is open, he added scrap wood (1x3) so there would be a place to attach the casters. He then added short pieces of a 1-1/8” hardwood dowels to attach the casters to the scrap wood. 

DIY Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack The above image is an upside down view of the dresser with scrap wood and hardwood dowel pieces attached. 

DIY Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack Scott from Prairie Vista Paints highly recommended PPG Paints Break-Through! paint that ended up being fantastic to work with! This product adheres to just about anything including galvanized steel, masonry, laminate, concrete, plastics, and interior wood. The dry time was even quicker than chalk paint and clean up was simple with just soap and water. I didn't have to seal it afterwards either which is nice because it's one less step to deal with. 

DIY Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack To give the faux drawer fronts depth, we taped off the lines and used the black PPG Break-Through! paint. After the black paint was dry, I filled the holes on the drawer fronts where the original hardware would have been placed. After the wood filler was dry and the excess sanded off, I then painted the entire dresser with the brown PPG Break-Through! paint. 

DIY Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack Before the brown color was completely dry, I went over the entire thing again with the black. I made sure to have very little black paint on my brush and just lightly brushed over the brown. On the image above, the drawer front on the left is just the brown paint, and the other two have the black layer.

After everything was dry, the drawer pulls were attached.

DIY Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack We also added a piece of butcher block to the top of the dresser to give it a more substantial and finished look. I added a few extra coats of the black paint to the butcher block top so it didn't blend in completely with the rest of the dresser. 

DIY Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack The result is a vintage look apothecary cabinet that fits perfectly in the space and was completed in just a few hours!

DIY Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack Some time later this week, you will all be able to vote on your favorite IKEA Rast Hack on the Hickory Hardware Facebook page. When the voting is up, I will be sure to come back and update this post with the link!


Mon, 11 Jan 2016 13:28:39 +0000 Apothecary Cabinet Ikea Rast Hack http://whatroseknows.com/1-11-2016/Apothecary-Cabinet-Ikea-Rast-Hack-/

Menards Chalk Paint Dutch Boy Dimensions Chalky Finish Paint desk makeoverWhen I discovered that Menards carried chalk paint I had to try it out - especially since the price was only $19.97 for a quart. Don't expect this paint to be front and center in the paint department though, you'll have to walk way in back to the end of one of the paint aisles to find Dutch Boy Dimensions Chalky Finish paint. Just like the other chalk paint brands, you can choose from a great selection of colors (42 of them actually). 

Menards Chalk Paint Dutch Boy Dimensions Chalky Finish Paint desk makeoverI wanted to give this sturdy yet very dated desk that I got for a steal an updated look for our guest room/office. After checking out the paint chip sheet for the Dutch Boy Dimensions Chalky Finish paint, I decided to go with a light gray color. I followed directions and tested an area to make sure the paint did not bead. If the paint beads, you have to lightly sand the surface so the paint will adhere better. 

Menards Chalk Paint Dutch Boy Dimensions Chalky Finish Paint desk makeoverAfter the paint dried (about an hour later), my desk was purple. This was not the color I picked out at Menards. There was no way I was going to put a purple desk in our guest room/office so it was back to Menards for me for another quart of paint. This time I decided to go with white. My advice to anyone that plans on using Menards chalk paint is to take that paint chip sheet outside to look at the colors in natural light. I'm not sure if it was the lighting at Menards (it can be pretty dark back in the paint department) or if whoever mixed the paint for me possibly made a mistake, but the paint chip did not match the paint on my desk. 

Menards Chalk Paint Dutch Boy Dimensions Chalky Finish Paint desk makeoverIt was mid-July when I painted the desk and mid-July in the midwest means humidity. We ended up bringing the desk inside so it would dry faster with the A/C. I used the entire quart of white paint to cover the purple. I did not expect to use that much paint on a surface that already had paint applied to it. 

Menards Chalk Paint Dutch Boy Dimensions Chalky Finish Paint desk makeoverI sealed the desk after the paint was dry with Minwax Polycrylic Polyurethane. I prefer this to wax because it protects better than wax and does not have to be reapplied like wax. 

Menards Chalk Paint Dutch Boy Dimensions Chalky Finish Paint desk makeoverAll in all I think Dutch Boy Dimensions Chalky Finish paint from Menards is a decent product for the price. I do feel as though I used more paint than I should have so maybe the cost savings wasn't really there for such a large project and I would have been better off with Annie Sloan or Cece Caldwell's paint. 

Mon, 4 Jan 2016 14:18:10 +0000 Desk Makeover with Menards Chalk Paint; Dutch Boy Dimensions Chalky Finish Review http://whatroseknows.com/1-4-2016/Desk-Makeover-with-Menards-Chalk-Paint-Dutch-Boy-Dimensions-Chalky-Finish-Review/

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.
#LoveAmericanHome #CollectiveBias

An Un-Christmassy Christmas gift basket! #LoveAmericanHome #Cbias #ad Ok guys, Christmas is exactly one week away. Do you have all of your gifts purchased and wrapped? Are you struggling to find an affordable and thoughtful gift for that family member, friend, or co-worker? Before you run to the store and purchase that Christmas-themed gift basket filled with overpriced chocolate and Christmassy things that will be stored away within days all in a basket that the receiver will probably never use again, I have a solution for you. 

I am not a fan of Christmas-themed gift baskets at all. If the items cannot be worn, used, displayed, or enjoyed for the entire year, I do not gift it. The only exception to this is edibles. I think most people un-Christmas their homes and want to jump right back into routine and normal life shortly after the holidays - especially since the holidays start earlier and earlier every year. 

An Un-Christmassy Christmas gift basket! #LoveAmericanHome #Cbias #ad While doing some shopping at Walmart earlier this week, the huge selection of the new American Home™ by Yankee Candle® brand fragrances caught my eye. Yep, that's right! Yankee Candle® brand now has a line of fragrances! These can be found in the "home" section at Walmart in the candle aisle and you can also see them all on the Walmart assortment page. The price of the large 19-oz jar candle is only $14.93 making it a very affordable gift. The colors of these candles and the selection of fragrances inspired me to make one of my new Minnesota friends a gift basket. An un-Christmassy Christmas gift basket. :) 

An Un-Christmassy Christmas gift basket! #LoveAmericanHome #Cbias #ad I picked the American Home by Yankee Candle® brand Wine Country fragrance because it smelled heavenly and I know my friend enjoys a glass of wine occasionally after her four young children go to bed. Gosh, four kids. I salute you moms that have a brood of children - especially young ones. There is a 7 year age difference between my two kids so I never really experienced the chaos of multiple kids. 

I also picked up the American Home by Yankee Candle® brand Clear Mountain Lake fragrance beads because not only did that also smell wonderful, I know it's a color she really likes and incorporates into her decor. 

An Un-Christmassy Christmas gift basket! #LoveAmericanHome #Cbias #ad No gift basket is complete without some sort of indulgent snack. This was the only part of the un-Christmassy Christmas gift basket that was Christmas-themed. 

I chose a basket that could be used all year long, not just during the holidays. This is another issue I have with baskets and containers used for Christmas gift baskets - they are normally Christmas-themed which limit their use. 

I could have written something on the mini chalkboard on the front of the basket, but if you were to see my chalk handwriting, you would understand why I left it blank. Writing with a piece of chalk is not easy! 

An Un-Christmassy Christmas gift basket! #LoveAmericanHome #Cbias #ad With a little bit of basket filler, and a gift basket bag to keep everything secure, my un-Christmassy Christmas gift basket was complete with quality American Home by Yankee Candle® brand candles and fragrance beads plus an indulgent snack. 

An Un-Christmassy Christmas gift basket! #LoveAmericanHome #Cbias #ad

Ah yes, I did use a pre-made Christmas-themed bow to tie the bag together. The reason I chose this bow is because it's not made from the traditional looking Christmas ribbon and it can be reused on a wreath. :)

Candle safety tips:

  • Do not burn candles in a child's room.
  • Please make sure the candle wicks are cut to 1/8th of an inch to ensure the flame isn't too large.
  • Each time you burn your candle, allow the entire top layer to become a fragrant pool of liquid wax and you'll get the biggest, boldest scent possible.
  • Always burn your candle on a heat resistant surface, keep it out of drafts and NEVER leave it unattended while lit.
  • When only ½" of the wax remains, it's time to let your candle go.


An Un-Christmassy Christmas gift basket! #LoveAmericanHome #Cbias #ad

I hope my un-Christmassy Christmas gift basket idea has inspired you to create a personalized gift basket for someone on your list! If all of your gifts are bought, maybe it's time to treat yourself with your own American Home by Yankee Candle® brand from Walmart! 

Fri, 18 Dec 2015 07:43:29 +0000 An Un-Christmassy Christmas Gift Basket http://whatroseknows.com/12-18-2015/An-UnChristmassy-Christmas-Gift-Basket/

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #DoTheMicroTwist #CollectiveBias

How to Care for Luxury Vinyl Plank Flooring #DoTheMicroTwist [ad] #CbiasWalk into any flooring store these days and the one product the salesperson can't wait to tell you about is the new luxury vinyl plank or luxury vinyl tile flooring (also known as LVP and LVT). LVP and LVT flooring is a cost-effective plank or tile style resilient-vinyl flooring that can be installed anywhere since it is water-resistant and can withstand high traffic areas. It does not require an underlayment padding and the joints will not swell or buckle due to moisture. 

When shopping around for flooring for our new home we wanted to avoid traditional tile floors because they are so cold, carpeting because it attracts dirt, and we also did not want to spend the money on hardwood floors. We wanted to use the same flooring throughout because neither my husband or I like the choppy look of different flooring materials when you go from room to room. Because LVP and LVT is water-resistant, it was the best choice for our new home since it can be used in all rooms including bathrooms. 

How to care for Luxury Vinyl Plank and Tile Flooring

  • Always use non-staining felt pads under furniture feet.
  • Prevent stains by wiping spills immediately. 
  • Use doormats both outside and inside of entryways as well as carpet runners in high traffic areas. 
  • Sweep or vacuum on a regular basis to pick up debris that could scratch the flooring. Use a vacuum without a beater brush
  • Over time, extreme sunlight can cause the flooring to fade and discolor just like it can with most furniture and carpeting. Be sure to close curtains or blinds to protect the flooring and your other home furnishings where extreme sunlight could be a problem. 
  • Dry mop or dust mop floors on a regular basis to remove dust.
  • Wet mop floors occasionally with soft mop like the O-Cedar MicroTwist™ mop

Now that we have been in our new home for almost 6 months, through some trial and error, I finally have a good routine down for keeping our LVP floors clean. I've learned that the steam mop that worked great on the ceramic tile floors in our last house left our LVP streaked. Also, the more soap you use, the duller the floors will be when they dry so it's best to use just a drop. How to Care for Luxury Vinyl Plank Flooring #DoTheMicroTwist [ad] #CbiasI use two O-Cedar MicroTwist™ mops when cleaning my floors which can be purchased online at Amazon and are also available at other retailers. Low gloss floors will show streaks in certain lighting after they are dry so having two mops allows me to dry the floor immediately. 

How to Care for Luxury Vinyl Plank Flooring #DoTheMicroTwist [ad] #CbiasThe O-Cedar MicroTwist™ mop has a super absorbent microfiber head that does not leave the floor sopping wet and also covers 75% more area at a time with extra large 16-inch mop head. The absorbent microfiber head dries the floor in just a few passes back and forth with the dry mop. 

How to Care for Luxury Vinyl Plank Flooring #DoTheMicroTwist [ad] #CbiasThe O-Cedar MicroTwist™ mop also features a specifically-designed twist-off microfiber mop head for easy replacement - which should last around 6 months. The hooks at the top of the mop handle allow you to hang the mops and keep them off the floor when not being used. This can easily be done with a Command 3M hook. There are also tabs that lock the mop head in place for easy storage. 

How to Care for Luxury Vinyl Plank Flooring #DoTheMicroTwist [ad] #CbiasThe fullness of this mop assures me that every square inch of my LVP flooring will get clean with the wet mop and dried with the dry mop.

If you are considering LVP or LVT flooring for your next DIY project or new home build, remember the tips above to keep your investment looking great for years and years to come. 

Sun, 13 Dec 2015 13:05:53 +0000 How To Care For Luxury Vinyl Plank Flooring (LVP, LVT) http://whatroseknows.com/12-13-2015/How-To-Care-For-Luxury-Vinyl-Plank-Flooring-LVP-LVT/

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.

Super easy NO BAKE cookie exchange cookie made with Quaker Oats and M&M's Minis! #MemoriesInTheBaking #CollectiveBias #adThis weekend I'm hosting my first ever cookie exchange here in our new state of Minnesota. Out of the 17 neighbors in our subdivision that I invited, I only know one of them. Sounds a little crazy and terrifying, huh? Our neighborhood is pretty new. There are houses going up all the time and those houses are filling up fast. Most of our neighbors who are new to the subdivision probably know just as many people as I do. If it wasn't for our neighbor Marla, who went out of her way to introduce herself and her extended family right away, even before our basement was dug, I would have been feeling even more homesick for my friends than I already was. We left behind some pretty awesome neighbors when we moved out of Wisconsin, but thanks to Marla, we have new equally awesome neighbors that we became fast friends with. Her grandsons play with my son, her son and my husband have been working on home projects together, and her daughter-in-law Jammie is stuck with me. :) 

For years and years I knew all of the neighbors around me so living in this new subdivision where I know only one neighbor has been hard on me. Last month I attended my new friend Alison's party (who I met through selling some household items from our last house) and at this party her mother and I got to talking about my new neighborhood. I was telling her how I don't really know anyone around us except one of our neighbors and she suggested I have a holiday open house. I left the party considering this idea but I wasn't sure our house could hold all of the families since we did downsize. I could however, invite the ladies in the neighborhood for a cookie exchange!

Super easy NO BAKE cookie exchange cookie made with Quaker Oats and M&M's Minis! #MemoriesInTheBaking #CollectiveBias #adAnd that's exactly what I did. I made invites using PicMonkey by creating a "picture". I then got those pictures developed, hole punched one corner, and then tied a cookie cutter to the invite with some festive holiday ribbon. I even created a board on Pinterest and added the link on the invite for those that were looking for ideas.

Super easy NO BAKE cookie exchange cookie made with Quaker Oats and M&M's Minis! #MemoriesInTheBaking #CollectiveBias #ad

I was out shopping at Target for the Glad®  Holiday Edition containers for the cookies I am making for the exchange when I noticed a recipe on the back of the box for no-bake Quaker M&M's® Cookies. These cookies would be the perfect exchange cookie for my friend Jammie to bring to my cookie exchange. Being a busy mom of 4 with a full-time job, I knew asking her to bring several dozen cookies to my exchange was a lot to ask so I invited her over to make these no-bake Quaker M&M's® Cookies.

Super easy NO BAKE cookie exchange cookie made with Quaker Oats and M&M's Minis! #MemoriesInTheBaking #CollectiveBias #adMy 17 year old daughter thinks it's "cute" when I hang out with friends so she snapped a couple of pictures of us making the cookies for the cookie exchange this weekend. :) 

This recipe makes the perfect, easy no-bake cookie exchange cookie! You can make them ahead of time and store them in the XL Glad®  Holiday Edition containers! Plus right now, you can save on each product with Target Cartwheel

Quaker M&M’S® Cookies Recipe

Super easy NO BAKE cookie exchange cookie made with Quaker Oats and M&M's Minis! #MemoriesInTheBaking #CollectiveBias #ad


  • 1 cup Quaker® Oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter (I used crunchy)
  • 1 bag M&M’S® Holiday Baking Minis
  • Optional Mix-in: 1-2 pouches SNICKERS® Bites, 8oz
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Super easy NO BAKE cookie exchange cookie made with Quaker Oats and M&M's Minis! #MemoriesInTheBaking #CollectiveBias #ad


  1. Stir all ingredients together in a medium bowl until thoroughly mixed. Cover and let chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  2. Once chilled, roll into balls approximately 1" in diameter.
  3. Store in GLAD® containers, bags or wraps.


Super easy NO BAKE cookie exchange cookie made with Quaker Oats and M&M's Minis! #MemoriesInTheBaking #CollectiveBias #adYou can find the M&M’S® Holiday Baking Minis and the GLAD® containers, bags or wraps in the holiday section at Target and the Quaker® Oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked) in the cereal aisle. The recipe for these Quaker M&M’S® Cookies is right on the GLAD® and Quaker® Oats container too!

You can find more holiday recipes and ideas along with the great savings Quaker, Glad® and Mars have to offer at Target when you go HERE

Super easy NO BAKE cookie exchange cookie made with Quaker Oats and M&M's Minis! #MemoriesInTheBaking #CollectiveBias #adWish me luck this weekend as I host my first ever cookie exchange here in Minnesota! I hope this cookie exchange is the first of many to come. :) 

If you have hosted a cookie exchange before and have some tips for this newbie, please share! Next on my to-do list for this exchange is name tags since we're all going to be learning so many new names! 

Mon, 30 Nov 2015 13:20:55 +0000 Easy No-Bake Cookie Exchange Cookie Recipe http://whatroseknows.com/11-30-2015/Easy-NoBake-Cookie-Exchange-Cookie-Recipe-/


I'm sharing my holiday home tour with the Jennifer Rizzo annual Holiday House walk 2015 link party! You can see more holiday home tours by clicking the image above or going here!

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! Well hello there! Come on in! 

I'm excited to share with you my first ever full Christmas home tour! I did get a little bit of a jump start on my Christmas decorating last month in my living room that you can see here! Can you believe where all that gorgeous stuff was from?! You may notice during this tour that I use the same themes throughout - red, black, plaid, flocked, and simple. When decorating an open concept area, using the same theme will keep the flow of the room harmonious and consistent. 

If you are visiting from the very talented Karen's Up on The Hill - WELCOME! If you haven't toured her home yet, you'll want to stop on by because she has gorgeous style! Plus, at the bottom of this post you will find links to over 20 other blogs sharing their holiday home tours! Let's get started with mine.....

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! So here is a view of our open concept living room and kitchen when you first walk in the front door. We went with very neutral colors for this space and wanted it to be as bright and airy as possible. The wall color is Mindful Gray by Sherwin Williams. 

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! Walk a little bit further in and here is the view of our IKEA kitchen while standing in the living room. I don't like to go overboard on holiday decor. While I'm sure to some people this may seem like a ton of decor, to others this may seem like nothing at all. The amount of decor you use in your home should make you happy and comfortable. And of course that is different for all of us. I prefer simple holiday decorating and to me that is pops of red and black against a neutral room. A very bright room I might add. This room can be so bright that it's almost blinding! I recently ordered blinds and shades to help with that and I look forward to them being installed. 

{Merry Christmas pillow; Kirklands}

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! So what do you think of the pops or red? I'm loving how I can get away with using very little Christmas decor in my kitchen because the red stands out so much.

{Reindeer plaque above cabinet; Kirklands}

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid!  I wanted to avoid overloading the counters and island with decor because those are the surfaces that get used most often. 

{Reindeer sign; Kirklands} {Santa suit basket; Michaels} {Small sign; Michaels}

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! Do you see that "Warm & Cozy" mug? That mug gets used by me several times a day. Not to stay warm & cozy though. I use that mug to stay cool & hydrated by filling it with ice from our ice maker and then pouring the ice into my water bottle. :) 

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! I made sure the island centerpiece could easily be moved all at once since the island is constantly being used in our house. 

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! Since we eat at our island more than our table, I did go a little overboard on the table centerpiece. I created a little winter wonderland with the flocked trees and reindeer. The same flocked trees are above the kitchen cabinets, but I added red berries instead of pinecones.Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! If you turn around while you are in the kitchen, here is a view of the front entryway. And for those of you that went on my fall home tour, you may remember me mentioning how much I didn't like the table that was under the mirror. I'm sure you will all agree that this new table looks much better. :)

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! I reused very few holiday decor items from prior years from our old house since our new house is a different style. These Santa Claus and the tree have been part of my decor for a few years now and greet you in the front entry. 

{Santa Claus figures; Hobby Lobby} {Resin tree; Hobby Lobby}

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! Speaking of my front entry, say hi to Sam. Sam is patiently waiting by the front door to go outside even though we never, ever take him out that door. He's such a goof. 

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! That vintage steamer trunk that we normally use as an end table next to the couch fit perfectly on that wall. Even though it's there temporarily because the Christmas tree is in it's spot, I may end up keeping the steamer trunk there and finding something else to use as an end table.

{Mirror; World Market} {Black table under mirror; Gordmans}

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! Part of the reason I like it so much in this spot is because here I can enjoy it's beauty. When it's next to the couch, it's too hidden. 

{Winter Wonderland wall hanging; Kirklands}

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! I love the way our barn board & black pipe shelf is all decked out for Christmas. Those deer look so majestic on the top shelf. The flocked trees give the space height and the pops of red make it festive. 

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! The new deer statue makes a good place to display my Polar Express ornaments. I still need to pick up the 2015 Polar Express ornament and I'm not sure I will be able to display it on the antlers because this year's ornament looked much bigger! 

{Deer statue; Gordmans} {Flocked trees; Tuesday Morning}

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! I'm still on the lookout for the perfect bookends for my Abraham Lincoln books. Mini cast iron Civil War cannons would look perfect. 

{Joy & Noel LED sign; Kirklands} {Merry Christmas sign; Kirklands}

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! I need to share one more picture of our barn beam & black pipe shelf just because I love it so much. :) And for those of you that are curious about it, this was built by my handsome handy husband. One day I will get around to doing a post on how this was constructed. 

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! Say hi to Sam again. He was very interested in what I was doing. :) 

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! This may look a little familiar if you visited during my phase 1 Christmas tour but you will notice that the Christmas tree has more ornaments on it. I also found black and white snowflake coasters at the Dollar Spot at Target for the coffee table. Almost all of the Christmas decor in this photo is from Big Lots

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! And there is Sam again. :) Hopefully next time I photograph this room the shade will be installed and the room will not be so bright. That wall behind the couch is one big window and we have nothing but fields behind our house so there is no shade at all during the day. I'm not complaining about it too much though, too bright is better than too dark!

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! The window in the dining area of the kitchen also lets in a ton of sunlight all day long and that window will soon have a bamboo shade.

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! Even though I'm all about inexpensive throw pillows, I did splurge a bit on this Merry Christmas pillow from Pier 1 Imports. It was just my style and too pretty to pass up. 

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! Those reindeer from Big Lots are still some of my favorite Christmas decor for this year! 

Check out this Christmas home tour! I love the pops of red, black, and plaid! And of course, one more photo of patiently waiting Sam. :)

Thank you all so much for coming on my Christmas home tour! Be sure to visit the other blogs by clicking the links below! 

Monday, November 30th

Green With Decor

3 Little Greenwoods

Our House Now a Home

Lehman Lane

Designing Vibes

Tuesday, December 1st

Q-Schmitz Home Design

Our Crafty Mom

Domicile 37

Shabby Grace Blog

Dream Design DIY

Wednesday, December 2nd

My Life from Home

Up to Date Interiors

Elizabeth Joan Designs

Pretty Practical Home

Thursday, December 3rd

Casa Watkins

The Deans List Blog

Craving Some Creativity

Vintage Romance Style

Friday, December 4th

Flourish & Knot

Around the Watts House

Karen's Up on the Hill

What Rose Knows

Creatively Homespun

Fri, 27 Nov 2015 22:00:26 +0000 Christmas Home Tour 2015 http://whatroseknows.com/11-27-2015/Christmas-Home-Tour-2015-/

Beautiful Christmas front porch decor inspiration! Love the Christmas porch pots and natural evergreen rope garland! When we were in the process of building our new house this past spring, I was unsure how I would like the size of the front porch. Our last home in Wisconsin had a huge front porch - just over 200 sq ft. You can see what I'm talking about here. I was determined to pay just as much attention to the outside of our house as the inside here in Minnesota. I've always had no problem making our home's interior look pretty, but the outside....well, in Wisconsin it was our landscaper friends and next door neighbors who made it look good. 

Now that we are here, I realize it was the size of the front porch in Wisconsin why I never did much with the porch aside from these outdoor lighted holiday gift boxes that my handsome handy husband made. Our old porch was just too big. I thought our new porch would be too small, but now that I've decorated our new front porch for both fall and Christmas, I definitely prefer the smaller porch over the larger porch. 

Christmas porch pot planters can be very, very pricey. Our local grocery store here in Rochester had them for $80. Woah. Yes, they are gorgeous and had beautiful birch logs in them, but $80? No way! 

Beautiful Christmas front porch decor inspiration! Love the Christmas porch pots and natural evergreen rope garland! I found these equally festive porch pot planters at Menards for only $14.88. At that price, I could afford to get more than one. They had several different ones to choose from that were all decorated a bit different. I picked the ones with the red berries and pine cones because of the colors. 

Beautiful Christmas front porch decor inspiration! Love the Christmas porch pots and natural evergreen rope garland! I added little elves to each pot for a bit of whimsy. I had the Merry Christmas sign for a few years that I purchased at the dollar store so if it doesn't hold up outdoors, I won't feel too bad. The outdoor mat is from Michaels. 

Beautiful Christmas front porch decor inspiration! Love the Christmas porch pots and natural evergreen rope garland! In the garden center at Menards, they have fresh rope garland for around $12. This garland reminded me of how in the movie Little Women (1994), they used evergreen branches to decorate both the interior and exterior of their home for Christmas. I've always loved that look. I have never used fresh garland before and I thought it would look pretty against our white board and batten siding. After we hung the garland though, I was unhappy with the way the left side was hanging. The right side looked so much better! Once I realized that the rope garland is held together by floral wires and nylon string, I deconstructed part of the garland. This was easier than I thought it would be. 

Beautiful Christmas front porch decor inspiration! Love the Christmas porch pots and natural evergreen rope garland! I just picked a spot that would make the garland even on both sides, cut the nylon rope and unwound part of the floral wire. I then flipped the left side of the garland so it way lay like the right side and tightly wound the floral wire back to the right side. It looks so much better this way! 

Beautiful Christmas front porch decor inspiration! Love the Christmas porch pots and natural evergreen rope garland! The two lower porch pots have red flood lights to light the doorway at night. I tried twinkle lights in the pots but decided against it because it was just too much.Beautiful Christmas front porch decor inspiration! Love the Christmas porch pots and natural evergreen rope garland! The wreath was my yearly Boy Scout fundraising purchase. I've always purchased a wreath from a Boy Scout when we lived in Wisconsin so I was happy when one of them knocked on our door here in Minnesota. Unfortunately I left it in the plastic bag it was delivered in too long so it's a bit deformed looking. Oops. 

I'm really happy with the way this all turned out! I hope this post has been an inspiration to you and you are able to make your front porch festive for this holiday season too! 

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Wed, 25 Nov 2015 07:04:11 +0000 Christmas Front Porch Decorating with Porch Pots and Fresh Garland http://whatroseknows.com/11-25-2015/Christmas-Front-Porch-Decorating-with-Porch-Pots-and-Fresh-Garland/