Painting the front door frame


A couple of posts back, I mentioned that we’re getting a storm door. It’s an arch-top door, and will likely be a trickier-than-normal installation, so we’re leaving it to the professionals.

But before it’s installed, I needed to repaint the door frame. I am a little sad to lose the yellow, but only about an inch of it would peek out beyond the frame of the storm door. And that would probably look pretty stupid.


I chose a pretty aged bronze for the door, and found a very close match in Valspar’s Fired Earth. It really does look metallic in a semi-gloss finish, but without that glittery sheen that they put in spray paint.


I kind of love the new sophisticated look the house is sporting. And at less than an hour per coat, this is a small project with a big impact.


See more curb appeal projects >>

FREE printables: Baby birth stats wall art

Free Printable Baby Birth Stats Wall Art

They are out of my Etsy shop and free for download! I’ve been prepping my shop for the upcoming holiday season, and these really didn’t seem to fit with my other items anymore. It doesn’t make sense for them just to go to waste, sitting inside my computer, so I’m giving them to you!

These are fully customizable prints that you can create yourself and print at home. All of the words and numbers can be personalized. If you don’t like the specific language I used, you can change it! The fonts and font sizes are locked in place; it’s impossible to mess this up.

If you’ve downloaded my kids birthday interview sheet or my handwriting worksheet, you are probably familiar with the format. You just type directly into the fillable PDF file and print.

They print in black ink on your choice of 8.5″ x 11″ paper. The printed area fits within an 8” x 10” mat or frame opening.

I have four different designs available. Click on a design below and save to your computer before customizing the print.
For personal use only, please.

Printable birth stats wall art Printable birth stats wall art
Printable birth stats wall art Printable birth stats wall art

If you like these printables, share this post with your friends!

Collected updates: Front door, organizing school papers, new artwork

Wood front door finish cracking

I often have little bits of things to say or small updates that don’t really warrant posts of their own, so I thought I’d start an every-once-in-a-while series just to talk about the small stuff.

Front door update

I’ve been meaning to do an update on our front door. I refinished the whole thing in the summer of 2011, and now it looks like this.

Wood front door finish cracking

Sad face. We have no roof on our porch, and the door gets full sun exposure all day, every day. Still, I’d hoped that all my hard work would last longer than a few years. I’m trying to pump myself up to at least sand it and re-seal it with some higher grade polyurethane, but maybe that will be a project for next spring.

In positive news, a storm door is on order and will be installed before the year is out. And that is the only thing giving me the courage to refinish again.

How to organize school papers

Organizing school papers

With Elise starting Kindergarten, the school papers have been piling up. I don’t save the fliers or school notes after I’ve read them/recorded dates off of them; most of them come via email anyway. But her drawings and schoolwork needed a place to live.

I found this accordion file I already had and just started filing away the papers. I’m starting a new section each month, but I didn’t even label the divisions. I’m sure at the end of the school year, many of these will get recycled, but right now, it’s hard to know what’s a keeper and what’s not, so we’ll just hold onto everything until then.

There are enough slots that I also added her school handbook and other such info for reference.

Salvaged wood assemblage art by Erin Heaton

New artwork

One final note, I started making some new art pieces from broken picture frames and other salvaged trims and scraps of wood. I am super excited about these. Making them is like putting together puzzles. I’m waiting to see if I am accepted to a craft show before listing them in my shop. Gotta keep my stock pile just in case.

I’m hoping I get accepted, and sorta hoping I don’t at the same time. Last year, I spent so much time prepping my show inventory that I burned myself out by Black Friday, and my Etsy shop just sort of sat there during the busiest shopping season. I feel like I have a better handle on things this year, but time will tell.

Fabric covered bulletin board

Fabric covered bulletin board

I promised Elise a bulletin board for her room more than a year ago. She always wants to hang things up, but we really don’t have a good place to display her artwork and such. When it came down to it, this project probably took me less than an hour to execute. Woo, go mom. Teaching the kids patience, for sure.

Basic boring cork board

The basic cork board came from Dan’s grandparents’ house, but it needed some dressing up.

Fabric to cover bulletin board

I dug through my fabric stash and found remnant that barely fit the dimensions I needed. It’s like it was meant to be. I painted the frame with some craft paint, then hot glued the (well-ironed) fabric to the face of the board around the perimeter. I can tell you, the old me would have never gotten paint on the cork as shown above, and would have made sure those fabric edges were a lot neater. But lately, I have thrown out the pursuit of perfection in the interest of saving time, and it’s a change for the better.

Fabric covered bulletin board with edges trimmed

I was going to use some ribbon or trim to hide the raw edges of the fabric, but my coffers came up short. Then I remembered I had some of these bamboo slats leftover from when I shortened window shades. They are thin enough to cut with scissors, so I trimmed them to size and hot glued them in place. And done.

Fabric on bulletin board

Everything for this makeover was free/reused/leftover, which gives this project bonus points. Always love to use stuff already in the house.

Bulletin board in kids room

See more of the girls’ room here >>

p.s. Thanks to all who’ve responded to my Reader Survey. It’s always nice to hear from readers and learn about what types of things you enjoy seeing here.
If you haven’t taken it yet, I want to hear from you! Go take the survey! >>

2014 Reader survey

2014 Lansdowne Life Reader Survey

Would you mind taking a brief survey for me? It should only take a few minutes, and it’s completely anonymous (if you want it to be).

It’s been more than a year since my last reader survey, and it’s your responses that help me decide what to post here. I don’t get a lot of feedback or comments day-to-day, so reader survey responses are really valuable to me.

Whether you’ve been reading Lansdowne Life for four days or four years, I’d love to hear from you!

Yes! Take me to the survey!