Friday, August 14, 2015

5 Years Blogging Giveaway

How did this happen?  Five years of blogging may not seem like a big deal but in my book it definitely deserves a celebration.  I have all of you readers to thank for clicking and reading and sharing your comments over the years so today it's a big giveaway for one lucky reader!

Want to see where it all started, enjoy some cringe worthy photos and hear 5 secrets about me?

Let's start - first photo ever posted:

A pile of boxes (you all know those as flat packed Ikea boxes) and maybe one of the smallest photos on my blog ever.  That was the kitchen renovation at our previous home I wanted to share with my family and friends and the catalyst for my blogging career.

Another lovely kitchen progress picture with all the lights on and could it be any smaller?

#1: The first 3 years of blogging I took all my photos using an iphone!

My first build: counter stools

Can you feel the pride beaming through this awful picture?  Everyone has to start somewhere right.
(If you're curious that final kitchen renovation post is here.)

#2: I used a handsaw to make all my cuts on my first 4 projects.

I even blogged about upgrading from the handsaw to a circular saw too.   Again cringe worthy because I should've bought a miter saw, not a circular saw but little did I know.


#3: I used super cheap plywood on my first big build.  

And that was okay (honestly I didn't know any better then) but use the best materials you can afford.  Purebond is my go to plywood.

Fast forward 4 years later and I'm building much better and smarter:

The sliding barn door console took first place in the Creating with The Stars contest!

Let's go back down memory lane, who remembers the bike makeover?

Yikes!  I don't know what's worse, the bright teal on a boys dirt bike or the photo itself.

#4: I had my flash ON for the first 6 months.
(Blogging rule #1, turn off your flash.)

Another post I'd like to forget:

Gingerbread ornaments headed straight to Gourmet magazine.  Who am I kidding?  I used to share some of the most mundane projects, thankfully not any more.

So I'm a DIY blogger who focuses on building, painting and sewing.  But like all bloggers you need good photos to really sell your projects and that brings up the topic of styling.

Or lack thereof.

Case in point:

Please don't leave me now.  Are you rolling in laughter at my winter mantel circa 2011 because I am.
At least the flash is off but so is the focus and everything else!

Now I know styling is not my strong suit but I have gotten a little better over the years.  My approach now: less is more as evidence in this deck the halls post from November 2014:

#5: I prefer to DIY than buy.
Always, even if it means more time and energy, because I can make it exactly the way I want it.

You can't buy this bed anywhere.  It's the style, shape and size I want plus the added functionality of the space below makes this a prime example of why I do it myself.

So cheers to 5 years of blogging and many more!  I'm still a work in progress and have tons to learn and promise to keep sharing my projects here with you.

To celebrate this milestone I'm offering a big giveaway package worth over $350.  One lucky reader will win the following items:

Thank you to all the generous sponsors who have supplied such wonderful tools and products.

Giveaway rules: must be 18 years old or older and reside in the US.

Disclaimer: I have not been compensated  by any company in any form to run this giveaway.


  1. I think your beginning blog posts are sweet. Like you said--you gotta start somewhere.

  2. Starting is half way to finishing! Love your blog.

  3. Congrats on your blogaversary. Cool prizes, but since I don't do Instagram i can't enter. It was neat to see your beginnings and how far you've come.

  4. I love your blog and share your love of sewing, painting, and the smell of wood! As we speak, my 21-year old daughter and 24- year old son are building the grill cart from your plans - the big one with the built-in cooler that you posted just before Father's Day :) My husband and I have taught them from a very young age the skill of building and doing things for themselves. We also used your wooden star plans to make about 13 stars for gifts for family and friends for Christmas. Thank you for sharing, and I wish you another 5 years of successful blogging and beyond!

  5. you are so inspiring! i'm so happy i found you last year--congrats on your blogiversary!

  6. Happy Blogiversary! I truly feel the same way you did around year 2.5 - hope is that I evolve in the same awesome fashion that you did!

  7. Happy 5 YEAR Blogiversary!!! 5 years is a REALLY big deal!! I first started following you when I saw your aawesome zipper pouch sewing tutorials... But, now I have gotten into building and power tools also (but, I still NEED everything in this prize package though, LOL!!!) so I am loving all of your building projects as well - so thank you SO MUCH for publishing this blog. It is fun looking back to your earlier posts, thanks for sharing - You have come a long way!!! CONGRATULATIONS!

  8. Happy Blogiversary! I would be beyond thrilled to win this prize package. Thank you so much for the opportunity. :)

  9. Congrats on the anniversary! I like the DIY barn door console.

  10. You've come a long way, baby! Kudos to you for showing us your history in photos and sharing your progress. (I didn't cringe as much as you did.) Any woman who can master a circular saw has my vote! Power to you and congratulations on the blog-aversary!

  11. Love the blog!,
    Well done, we've all gotta start somewhere
    to get somewhere.
    Is it to late to enter the 5 year giveaway?,
    and how can I enter?
    📐 😊🔨