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Thursday, June 28, 2012

How to Make Your Bathroom Feel Like a Spa

Yesterday I enjoyed a lovely treatment at Absolute Wellness and Spa in Williston, VT. It was extremely relaxing and I left feeling calm yet refreshed.

As inspired by my spa visit, here are a few ways to recreate a spa atmosphere in your bathroom at home... on a budget of course!

Soothing Sounds
Relaxing music or the sound of the ocean is the quickest and cheapest way to transform your space into your  own personal spa.

On the cheap: Search for some spa sounds on YouTube and put it on repeat. (How to put a YouTube video on repeat: Type "repeat" into a YouTube URL before the ".com" so http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2aW0a0qpDHY becomes http://www.youtuberepeat.com/watch?v=http://www.youtuberepeat.com/watch?v= 2aW0a0qpDHY)

Lighting and Candles
Dim the florescents, light some candles and close your eyes.

On the cheap: Buy a pack of tea lights for a few bucks and toss them into mason jars for an easy shabby chic look. If you're feeling really crafty, wrap the jar in lace or spray paint it before you drop the candle in.

Scents and Smells

Bring that comforting spa smell into your home.

On the cheap: Burn some scented candles in the bathroom, my favorites are lavender and vanilla, or make your own scent diffuser.

Extra Goodies: 
Sea salts, a neck pillow, tub bubbles, body lotion and fluffy towels to dry you off after your soothing soak!

Head over to Katie's Nesting Spot to check out today's Crafty Soiree... I'm featured!!

Have a Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

July Photo Challenge at VPT

I know you have all heard of photo a day challenges, they are so much fun! Join me this month in the Vermont Public Television July Photo Challenge!

I am so jazzed on this. Follow me @TheresaMcCabe on Twitter and @TheresaMcCabe on Instagram, I always follow back :)

And follow along with the photo challenge on Vermont Public Television's Photo Challenge Pinterest Board.

Vermont Public Television TV PBS Logo Icon

Vermont Public Television Logo Icon

Have a happy Hump Day!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Facebook Friday!

I made a Facebook Page for QuarDecor yesterday! If you like awesome furniture fix-ups and thrifty DIY projects, then you should LIKE QuarDecor on Faceook.

I really love this furniture fix up I came across yesterday... Melody from Connecticut snagged this old dresser from a "lady whose business it is to sell furniture she acquires via Craigslist...." Oh I love it. It's so inspiring to hear that other people doing this with success.

I love to find junky pieces of furniture, busted up frames or old nick-nacks, and turn them into something wonderful. The act of refreshing and revamping is so rewarding. I work hard, I try new things, and I learn so much along the way. One day I will have my own thrifty home decor resale shop where I can sell my treasures.

Head over to My Passion for Decor to see the full details on this awesome dresser revamp. But not before you LIKE QuarDecor on Facebook, or follow me with Google Friend Connect! Or Follow me on on Pinterest. Or Follow me Twitter!

Happy Friday!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

File Cabinet Revamp: Snazzy Sister State Storage

I went and did it AGAIN! Remember my awesome yellow and green file cabinet revamp last month? Well I got such an overwhelming response that I knew I just had to do it again. So the other day I picked up 2 free file cabinets from Democracy for America, they are moving to a new office in Burlington, VT so they were getting rid of some old office supplies.

I took out the drawers and spray painted the cabinets a light blue. Then I removed the hardware from the drawers and carefully cut up 2 maps of the sister states: Vermont and New Hampshire! Then I decoupaged the maps onto the drawers and put them back into the painted cabinet shells. Voila! Your fancy sister state file cabinets are complete!

Fancy File Cabinet Decoupage Map

Fancy File Cabinet Decoupage Map

Fancy File Cabinet Decoupage Map

File Cabinet: Free
Maps: Free
Spray Paint: $3.98
Mod Podge: $7.49

Project Cost Total: $11.47

Fancy File Cabinet Decoupage Map

If you like this project then pin it to your easy DIY board right now! ----> 

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Sunday, June 17, 2012

A Happy Father's Day Life Lesson

Warning: This blog post is about to get personal... proceed with caution.

I have two Dads. My parents had Katie, Rachel and ME before they got divorced. Mom married John and had Lillian and Johnny. Tom-Dad married Mary and had Trisha and Brendan. Here is the diagram of our immediate family tree that I have drawn SO many times for my friends, but never quite like this! :)
Miller McCabe Family Tree

I grew up in Rye, NY with the McCabe nucleus, while the Miller nucleus lives out on the West Coast.
Miller McCabe
When I was younger I used to get so excited to visit Tom-Dad out on the West Coast. Oh, yeah, Dad, you should probably know that Katie, Rachel and I usually refer to you as Tom-Dad. It probably sounds weird, but we always have since before I can remember. Even Lillian and Johnny call you Tom-Dad!

Anyways, to ten-year-old me, visiting my father meant spending lots of time with my awesome older sisters Katie and Rachel, and my younger siblings Trisha and Brendan, who I rarely got to see. It also meant airplane rides, swimming pools, game boys, mini-golf, ice cream, video games, car trips and a fun vacation on the West Coast. Even though I was pumped for vaca with my sibs, I used to cry myself to sleep in the weeks leading up to my trip, but I didn't understand why.

One night I remember (John) Dad came into my room (which I shared with Lillian and Johnny) and asked me why I was crying, so I tried to explain my confusing feelings. Through my sobs I explained I loved both my Dads so much, but I was afraid one would think I loved the other more. I told him I didn't know how to show Tom-Dad that I loved him in such a short amount of time. I explained I was happy to see my Dad, but I was sad that I would have to leave.

He may not remember this moment, but it will stick with me forever. My Dad, peering over the wooden bunk bed safety rails, put his hand on my face and told me that it was okay to feel confused, happy and sad all at the same time. He told me the best way to show my Dad I love him is to enjoy the time I spend with him, and try not to worry about how sad it will be when it's time to leave.

Now I am "grown up," I don't live with my parents or my siblings anymore, in fact I don't live near most of my family and friends, and I miss them all the time. (I seriously cannot explain how much I love and miss you all...) My Dad's comforting words helped me realize that we can't always spend our time with the people we want to spend our time with. We all have lives, responsiblities, goals, dreams and aspirations that will keep us apart from the people we love. Now every time I get to visit Dad, Tom-Dad, Mom, Mary, Katie, Rachel, Lillian, Johnny, Trisha, Brendan or anyone I love, I always remember what Dad explained that night...

The best way to show someone you love them is to enjoy the time you spend with them. 
I think it's important everyone remember this lesson on Father's Day... If you are getting the chance to spend time with your Dad this weekend, I am SO JEALOUS of you. But please try not worry about what happened in the past, or what might happen in the future. Just try to really enjoy the time you spend with the people you love. That is the best way to show them you love them ;)

Happy Father's Day Dads!!!! I love you and I miss you always.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Stay Smiling

Today is a writing post. I've been busy. Or maybe lazy. I don't know. My head has felt like it was going to explode for the past 4 days. Luckily today I woke up only with a dim buzzing pain in my temples. It's a nice break from the ear popping surge of pain that had been squeezing my eyes out of their sockets since Monday.

I blame it on allergies. Vermont is in full bloom. It's muggy and hot during the day, and cold and dewy overnight. We sleep with the window open, and the window fan blows pollen, dust, ragweed and then freezing midnight air directly into my face while I sleep...

Everyday when I get out of work around 4:30 pm it looks like it's going to thunderstorm. This has put a damper on my plans to fix up the furniture that is waiting so patiently on my side of the garage for my crafty hands to heal them. I'm almost done with the file cabinets, I just have to cover the drawers with white contact paper, then screw the hardware back into place.

I'm also almost finished with the dresser I am repainting white. I'm sure I'll be able to sell that for around $60. We also just finished painting the guest bedroom green... Pictures of all these projects to come next week I promise. I'll continue pumping a steady stream of allergy medicine into my bloodstream to hopefully fend off any more pained brain problems.

Think happy, be happy :)

Be so happy that when others look at you they become happy too

Wednesday, June 13, 2012


Today I posted this picture on the Vermont Public Television Facebook... feel free to share it if you agree.
C is for Coffee Cookie Monster Sesame Street
Happy Hump Day!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Vermont Backyard

June came so quickly I have barely had any time to stop and smell the roses, and daffodils, azaleas, lilacs, tulips and all the other lovely flowers that grow here in Vermont around this time.

Mike and I have worked really hard to prep the vegetable garden in the backyard this spring. This picture below is NOT my garden... I wish! It is the inspiration garden I've used as we've been working hard on ours. Truth be told, ours is even bigger than this one!

This is what the garden looked like when we started going at it... It's been covered with that black tarp for years, so there has been a lot of time for plants to grow through the plastic.

We ripped back the tarp and yanked out all the overgrowth, finding many critters hiding under the plastic. Watch out for the snakes!!

The soil underneath the tarp is rich and ripe for gardening. I hired a dude to come roto-till last week. Here is the garden, all fenced in with seeds ready to sprout!

Unrelated to the garden work, the horses next door have been escaping their fence during the day lately, and yesterday they stopped by our yard to leave us a "present." Mike's dad said they were just trying to fertilize my garden but the fence was in the way! Haha ew.

But it's not all work and no play in our back yard, we are also busy having fun! Here's a shot of the firepit Mike built in the side yard ready to rock. I was about to enjoy some grilled corn.

And here I am about to tear it up on the 4-wheeler!

Okay that is all. I hope everyone has a  great Friday! I woke up super early this morning to take the paint tape down in the guest bedroom, and prep the walls for painting this evening after work. I want to help Mike out as much as I can before I ferry across Lake Champlain to Plattsburgh, NY tomorrow for an AAU basketball tournament... Before and after pictures to come!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Winter vs. Summer

Wow I am tiring myself getting up every morning to run a few miles to make sure I am ready to run in the Color Me Rad 5k in Boston in July with Janice :)

I also have three more AAU basketball tournaments coming up in the next three weekends, so I've tried to step up the intensity at practice, but with only 4 or 5 girls showing up to practice, my assistant coach Michelle and I have to play a lot more. Luckily I love basketball!

Meanwhile, I've been working on a plan to revamp 2 free file cabinets I picked up the other day, and I have a few furniture projects in the queue. Meanwhile, enjoy these cool photos I took of the Discovery Road sign and then jazzed up with Instagram.

Discovery Road Essex Vermont VT Winter

Discovery Road Essex Vermont VT Summer

Happy Thursday!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Amelia Earhart's House

Amelia Earhart's house is on the market! According to Wikipedia, Amelia and her husband George Putnam lived in my hometown, Rye, NY, until a fire broke out in November 1934, destroying many family treasures and Earhart's personal mementos. The fire prompted them to finally move out to the West Coast.

I don't particularly enjoy learning about history, unless it is somehow attached to a home. For instance, I found the history surrounding the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina fascinating.

The mysterious disappearance of Amelia Earhart was recently in the news: "The discovery of an old jar of anti-freckle cream on a Pacific island could be a key clue in the disappearance of aviator Amelia Earhart, who disliked her facial spots... Researchers for The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery found the jar, broken into five pieces, on a remote island in the Pacific republic of Kiribati, giving support to theories that the uninhabited island became Earhart's final resting place..."

Now here is the listing:

63 Franklin Ave, Rye, NY
Price: $2,495,000
Bedrooms: 7
Bathrooms: 4
Lot Size: 0.57 acres
Built in 1888

Strawberry Rhubarb Muffins

We have a huge rhubarb patch in our backyard that is growing out of control!

I took my scissors to it and cut out at least 20 large stalks of rhubarb, leaving probably 50 more in the patch. I chopped the stalks up and filled two large Ziploc bags with the diced rhubarb, more than enough for this muffin recipe.

On Thursday morning last week I woke up early to whip up some muffins.

These tasty treats ended up being a HUGE hit in the office! They looked good and they tasted even better. I probably could have made them totally dairy free by using the vegan butter I have, but I didn't want to risk it.  These came out so great! Scroll down for the super easy recipe.

Strawberry Rhubarb Muffins adapted from Gourmet Kosher Cooking

1 cup diced rhubarb
1 cup sliced strawberries
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2-1/4 cups flour
1 tablespoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 stick of butter
1 egg
1/2 cup maple syrup
2/3 cup vanilla soymilk

In a medium sized bowl, mix rhubarb and strawberries with brown sugar. Let sit 45 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 12 muffin cups with paper lines. Mix together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg and set aside. In a mixer, beat margarine and egg until smooth. Add in maple syrup and blend. Add flour mixture alternately with soy milk to make a smooth batter. Fold in the strawberry rhubarb mixture. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups, filling each 2/3 of the way full. Bake until lightly browned about 30 to 35 minutes.

Link Up Party:
Five Little Chefs

Friday, June 1, 2012

Freebie Revamp: Super 6-Drawer Dresser

I've gone and done it again :) Last weekend I finished fixing up a freebie dresser for our Master Bedroom. I snagged this beast from my old friend Craigslist.

I removed the hardware, filled the drawer pull holes with putty, sanded, primed and painted it white. Then I drilled holes for the brand new brushed nickel hardware, which I bought at Lowe's for about $3 a piece. I used the birthday gift card I got from my mom and dad, so it was free to me. Thanks!!

And there you have it, another QuarDecor original. I think I'm going to keep this one. It matches the night stands perfectly!

I'm holding onto the original hardware from the dresser. The knobs are unique, I'll definitely be able to find a use for them somewhere down the road. And did you notice my lovely DIY green paint chip art on the dresser?

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