Villa del Palmar at the Islands of Loreto

by Dinah Wulf

Villa del Palmar at the Islands of Loreto

Disclosure: Thank you to Villa del Palmar at The Islands of Loreto for sponsoring this trip and post. All opinions are 100% my own.

Where do I begin? I attempted to summarize four fun-filled days and three nights about my trip to Villa del Palmar at the Islands of Loreto in one blog post.  It didn’t quite work out. So I ended up writing several including 1) our boat tour, 2) diving for clams, 3) our morning hike, 4) my tips for paddle boarding, and even 5) how I learned how to make a beautiful sun-shaped garnish on the beach while sipping on some fresh cucumber lime margaritas. Oh! I even shared 6) How I wrapped my souvenirs in toilet paper rolls!

There is still so much more to share, so I summed it up as best as I could in a three minute video. In it, you will see photos of our entire trip including my gorgeous suite, all the adventures I mentioned above, and all the gourmet food we ate.



Villa del Palmar Loreto Mexico

Baja’s First Million Star Resort

Villa del Palmar at The Islands of Loreto is a self-contained destination resort on the Sea of Cortez, off the eastern coast of the Baja peninsula overlooking Danzante Island (one of five in the region). It features 181 new, spacious, beautifully appointed Deluxe Ocean View, one, two and three bedroom Suites with balcony or terrace, stunning ocean views, mountain views, outstanding restaurants, an attentive English-speaking staff, five swimming pools, a 39,000 square feet Spa, two tennis courts, beautiful beaches and a mild and warm climate year-round.  The New York Times lists Loreto in its Top Ten Places to go in 2011. The travel article featuring The Islands of Loreto, Baja California South, Mexico ranked first among readers.

Guests can enjoy scuba and snorkeling tours in the protected Marine Park within the five prominent Loreto Islands, horseback riding, swimming, world-class fishing (catch a Dorado and bring it home to have a Villa del Palmar at The Islands of Loreto chef prepare it for you), paddle boarding, kayaking, whale watching and mountain biking.  With complimentary shuttle service, guests can explore the historic town at the Islands of Loreto and visit the 1697 mission that made the town famous.  The area is also known for its wildlife, including the 900 species of fish off the coast and in an area that has been declared a World Heritage Site. Hotel perks include a spa and fitness center, massages, salsa dance lessons and movie nights for children. 

More about my adventures in Loreto, Mexico:

A Note to My Husband on His Birthday

by Dinah Wulf

A Note to My Husband on His Birthday

Oh! Where do I begin?  I suppose I wanted to post this on the blog because, my husband is the reason why I am able to do what I do. He is so supportive of my creative journey. He welcomes conversations about my DIY inspirations and aspirations and even comes up with so many new ideas to help me move forward and upward. He never complains about the conferences I want to attend, the messy craft room, or the many paint cans in the garage.  In fact, he embraces it and encourages it.

Our daughter and I love his jokes, candid nature, and dance moves.  In fact, we look forward to our dance parties on Saturday night for our party of three (our secret is out). We love walking him to the door every morning and greeting him at the door every evening.

Today is about my husband; the man that provides for our family in so many ways, not only financially but emotionally and with an extremely passionate heart. He is a great father and a loving husband.  He is an inspiring boss and a dedicated friend. He challenges Mia and me and makes us better in so many ways.

We love you! Happy Birthday!

Here’s a little message from our daughter:

What message would you like to tell Daddy on his birthday?

“I want to get roller skates and ice skates for Daddy and maybe some flowers from outside.  I want to make a super hero picture of daddy because he helps me open things like my Play doh.” – Mia, age 3

My Best Friend’s Birthday

by Dinah Wulf

Today is one of my best friend’s birthday. Jenny and I met each other almost twenty years ago when we were 19 years old. I was standing outside of my apartment in college and she walked up to me and introduced herself. It was that moment in time that forever changed my life. There are actually five of us, but if it wasn’t for Jenny walking up to me at that moment, who knows where we’d be today.

The girls

Over the past several years, we’ve lived… I mean LIVED a full life together. We survived our twenties which was a CRAZY time. Let’s just say THANK GOODNESS there was no social media back then. Can you say, “evidence”? We’ve survived love, heartache, and everything in between. Among the five of us we’ve been engaged, married, divorced, and married again. Today, the five of us have a dozen kids.

One of the reasons I wanted to write this is because Jenny has recently jumped on the craft and DIY blogging journey with me. She started her blog, Simply Creative Ways last September and has done a fantastic job. With four young kids and a husband, she manages to pull off some great ideas. She shares her craft tutorials, holiday ideas, party ideas, organization tips, and more. She even has her oldest daughter, Tiffany who is only six years old; write her very own crafty posts which are absolutely ADORABLE!

She’s an inspiration to me and I would love it if you stopped by…

Simply Creative Ways

…and show Jenny some support on her birthday! Leave a comment and tell her Dinah from DIY Inspired sent you! Thank you!!!

DIY Inspired: A Year in Review 2013

by Dinah Wulf

DIY Inspired: A Year in Review

Whoa I’ve been super busy this last year and that video is just a short two minute clip of what I’ve done. This year in review is a little late, but I think it took me a few weeks to let the last 12 months sink in. That said, I think this post is more for me than you… ha!

What I mean by that is that sometimes, well a lot of the times, I think I forget about the blogging part of blogging. I get so caught up in sharing new tutorials and projects that I forget about the writing and reflection part. At this time of year, 1) I ALWAYS can’t believe it’s a new year, and 2) reflect back at what I have accomplished the last year. This year in review for me isn’t particularly a round-up of projects (I’ve already done that HERE), rather a recollection of the things I have learned while blogging and writing and creating.

I think I’ve changed my “about” page and my “featured” page fifty times this last year. Every time I do that, it’s a really exciting feeling because it feels like an addition to my virtual resume. Blogging and writing and creating have officially become my profession. It’s so strange.  I feel so many things… lucky, happy, stressed, excited, encouraged, validated, and scared.

In general, in the past 12 months I’ve grown a TON in many ways including discipline, balance, organization, time management, professionalism, communication, and creativity.

But what is the most important thing I learned about Blogging this past year?

I learned that relationships and community are SO important. I knew that they always were, but this year I’ve REALLY learned the importance of being friends with other Bloggers, and sharing. My “Bloggy friends” are so important to me. It feels good to e-talk to others. It feels good to talk to others who know what you are going through. It feels GREAT to vent to people who know what the hell you’re talking about!

People, especially my friends and family, ask me all the time how to get started.  I am always open to sharing and there is a sense of honor that they respect my opinion and want my help. Here is basically what I tell them:

  • Blogging is AWESOME BUT…
  • Blogging is hard.
  • It’s A LOT of work.
  • It’s a full time job.
  • It’s not a hobby.
  • It takes time.
  • You can’t do it alone.
  • Good luck.

Just kidding on that last one! I actually enjoy helping others.  I mean, who wouldn’t want to do what they love for a living?

I digress. I think I just went off on a tangent…

This last year, I’ve also taken on a new journey with Inheriting Our Planet.  In the beginning I was excited.  It was a place for me to share the crafts that I did with my daughter that I didn’t publish on DIY Inspired.  What was I thinking? I admit that it was SO stressful after a while.  Was I out of my mind to start a second blog??? Now, however, the excitement is back and who knows, maybe my little one will take it over one day and it’ll be her blog.

Anyway, it’s been a fantastic year all in all.  I wouldn’t change any of it and I can’t wait to see what the next year brings.

In case you missed my round-up of the Best of DIY Inspired 2013, here it is!

Best of diyinspired 2013 Collage

Bloggy Boot Camp Dallas 2013

by Dinah Wulf

I mentioned earlier this month that I was so excited about attending Bloggy Boot Camp Dallas this year. My friend Tara from A Spectacled Owl and I made flight and hotel arrangements to attend months ago. It seemed like it couldn’t come fast enough and now I can’t believe it’s already over.

Here is a selfie Tara and I took while waiting to board our plane at LAX.

BBC Dallas Tara

I must say, this conference exceeded my expectations. Tiffany Romero and Fancesca Banducci from the SITS Girls are the two amazing women responsible for putting the conference together. The sponsors, food, accommodations at the Double Tree Hilton, and the speakers were fantastic.  Some of the sponsors we got to meet were Mirassou Winery, Invisalign, and LG. There was also a fantastic line up of speakers. Two speakers who really resonated with me were Danielle Smith from Extraordinary Mom and Lisa Leonard from Lisa Leonard Designs.

I took good notes!

BBC Dallas

And thank goodness for Sugar Wish… I may have possibly OD’d on Red Hots. By the way, you HAVE to check them out.  It’s an adorable way to send an e-card and candy to a loved one.  So cute!

Sugar Wish

This is one of my friends Jamie from Hands On As We Grow. We had met a year ago and BBC brought us together!


This is a photo of some bloggers that I have been dying to meet in person from a group I am proud to be a part of.  From top to bottom, left to right we are: Megan Sheakoski, Amy Locurto, Randi Dukes, Holly Homer, Carolyn Elbert, Kelly Dixon, Me, and Jamie Reimer.  Finally meeting this group of talented bloggers in person and REALLY getting to know Tara were probably the highlights of my trip.

Bloggy Boot Camp Tribe Awesome

Learned and talking about blogging, SEO, social media, photography, and “juggling” it all among like-minded and well-respected women in the industry at a conference like Bloggy Bootcamp, I must say, is definitely one of the many rewards  and highlights of blogging.  

Dear Mia

by Dinah Wulf

Happy Birthday Mia

Dear Mia,

I can’t believe you are three years old today. I have no idea where the past three years have gone.  You start pre-school in just two short months.  Before you know it, I’ll be sending you off to college. 

There are a few things I want you to remember about this past year.  Actually, I want to remember too!

  • You talk more than any other three year old I know, and your daily vocabulary contains words like “delicious”, “probably”,“cylinder”, and “disgusting”.
  • Your favorite treats are “wiggly worms” (gummy worms).  You get to pick two each time.  One regular and one sour.
  • You sing songs when you are tired.
  • You sing songs when you are in time out and it drives daddy and me nuts.
  • We go to the library almost every week to get 3-5 books to read before bed.
  • You like to race dad on your tricycle down the driveway and make him put his helmet on too.
  • You already like to dress yourself and ALWAYS pick out a skirt or dress and sometimes you’ll beg me to wear your patent leather dress shoes to the grocery store.
  • You take a purse and sunglasses everywhere we go.
  • When you get hurt, you hold in your tears.
  • Your favorite game is “I’m the Mommy and you’re the baby.”
  • Your memory is amazing!

With the help of Facebook, I had to go back and look at the timeline because I know I had posted some funny Facebook statuses I have written about you from the last year.  I just cut and pasted.  Here are some of them that I’ll never forget, starting with the most recent.

June 28, 2013: Ooooooh! So THAT’S what they mean by “terrible twos” or is it “only child syndrome”? Whatever it is I’m busting out some beers tonight…

April 10, 2013: Parenting tip #32: When your toddler lays down to get her diaper changed and she warns, “mommy, it’s a big one,” it’s time to crack down on potty training.

March 31, 2013: Mike and I have different parenting styles:

  • Mia: “Mommy, I pooped on Daddy’s Ipad.”
  • Me: “Oh No! You have to tell Mommy if you have to go to the bathroom.”
  • Mike: “How would you like it if I pooped on YOUR Ipad? I’m pooping on Dora! I’m pooping on Dora!”

March 19, 2013: Mia (2 YO) just asked me to please hold her pinwheel while she drives to our tax appointment.

February 8, 2013: Parenting tip #25: Do not leave the cream cheese tub unattended, otherwise your toddler will think it’s a good idea to eat it with her toes… yes… her toes… ew.

January 3, 2013: Parenting Tip #63: Be specific when talking to your toddler. For example, when warning “Be careful with your juice” you should really say, “Don’t put Strawberry Shortcake and Blueberry Muffin in your juice, or stick your entire hand in it, or pour it all over the couch and sip it out of the crevices.” You’re welcome.

December 24, 2012: I love how I get potty training, counting, and reading duty and Mike gets to teach her how to lick French onion dip off the counter…

November 20, 2012: Parenting tip #62: If you’re wondering why your house smells like Italian food and you aren’t cooking, your toddler is probably upstairs emptying a Costco sized Parmesan cheese container all over her room.

Happy Birthday, Baby Girl! I can’t wait to see what the next year brings.  I love you more than you will ever know.



Introducing My Skinny Cow WoCavé

by Dinah Wulf

I am absolutely ecstatic to be sponsored by Skinny Cow brand and a part of the WoCavé Campaign this summer!  What is a WoCavé  you ask? WoCavé {wo-cah-vay} is short for “Woman Cave”. It can be any place that you are in your truest self, where you are both fabulous and flawed, but ALWAYS celebrated!  It’s a place where you can indulge in sweets, do whatever you love, and kick up your heels with your friends. For me, my WoCavé is none other than… my craft room! 

Until the end of August, you will see me here on DIY Inspired completing three exciting creative DIY missions from Skinny Cow. More on that in a second…first, let me introduce you to MY WoCavé!

My craft room is my sanctuary. Period. <Insert music from the heavens here>

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It’s a place where I am inspired and where I write this blog.  It’s a place filled with “stuff” I have upcycled, including these stools and these drawers.

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It’s a place where I am most organized and everything has its place.

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It’s a place where I am surrounded by things that I can’t live without, like craft paint and spray paint.

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It’s a place where my daughter is just as inspired and likes to create too!

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Now that you have had a sneak peek into MY WoCavé, let me share a tad about my first mission from Skinny Cow!

Hint #1: The inspiration is inside this box.

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Hint #2: It involves crafting with my best friend in my WoCavé!

Hint #3: It involves Skinny Cow ice cream candy bars! 

More exciting news…

Every girl needs a WoCavé and Skinny Cow wants to know how you’d style your personal WoCavé. Now until July 15th, just visit Skinny Cow’s page to build your WoCavé, making sure to include one featured item in your set.  One grand prize winner will receive a $7,500 gift card, a Skinny pink mini fridge, a micro-suede “ottowoman”, a hammered metal candy bowl, a memory board, a WoCavé wall decal and five coupons for Skinny Cow treats!  What????? Yes! And five runners-up will win a Skinny Cow prize package that includes all the above except the gift card.  You have one week left to enter!

I can’t wait to show you my first Skinny Cow WoCavé mission and introduce my second mission!

This post was sponsored by Skinny Cow brand. I received monetary compensation and product for this post.  All opinions are 100% my own.


Elevate Blog Conference 2013

by Dinah Wulf

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Recently I the honor of attending the Elevate Blog Conference 2013 hosted by Summer from Made by Munchies Mama, Jen from Delightful Deets, and Nichole from Yeung Mother Hubbard



It was held at the beautiful Newport Dunes in sunny Newport Beach California.  The cool yet sunny weather was perfect that day.  The girls were so detailed in their planning for this fabulous event.  As we checked in and got our name tags, whimsical pinwheels lined the walkway.

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Around the corner there were refreshments and a snack bar that was filled all day.  The tables were graced with creative centerpieces and place settings, personalized for every attendee.

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The hosts took advantage of the gorgeous scenery and created a photo area filled with fun props and a lovely homemade Elevate banner.

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Inside, there was a table filled with swag from all the amazing sponsors.

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There was also dessert table decorated with colorful paper medallions and filled with yummy goodness. See that “EAT” sign in the back??  I won it!! Woo hoo!

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The speakers were so inspiring.  It was great personally meeting all these fabulous women!

Ashley from Little Miss Momma

Kimmie from Sugar and Dots

Sarah from Little Penelope Lane

Erin from Living In Yellow



We also had Nat and her husband from Take the Cannoli representing a great cause, Soul Hope.  Sole Hope is a group of passionate, committed people who are putting closed toed shoes on African children, one pair at a time.  We even got to help make shoes and got together for a shoe cutting event.

We also had time to craft, of course!  This is a photo of me, Tara from A Spectacled Owl, and Joni from Pop Art Minis.



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This video made by Lora from Lora Knight Photography says it all!



I had a great time and can’t wait for next year!

Mom 2.0 Summit 2013

by Dinah Wulf

mom summit view 3

Sometimes as a Mom Blogger, you feel alone.  Friends and family who are not Bloggers really have no idea how much work is entailed with running a business like this from home, while running your household as well.  This is why, when you ask another Mommy Blogger, rather Influencer or Publisher, they’ll admit that a blog conference is equivalent to a “weekend vacation getaway”.  I was given the honor of being sponsored by Clever Girls Collective to attend Mom 2.0 Summit 2013 at the Ritz Carlton in Laguna Niguel, California. “Holy crap” was the first thing that came to mind.  I couldn’t believe that I was chosen.  This was a HUGE honor for me, one that was worthy of going on my resume. So, I wanted to share my experience.

I have attended many trade shows and conferences across the nation in my last career however this would be my first large blog conference. I didn’t know exactly what to expect, but in my gut it would be greatness…and it was.

mom summit lisa ling

The opening guest and key note speaker was Lisa Ling.  This was exciting for me because I have followed her career since she was on The View because she is a smart, young, beautiful, and successful Asian-American woman on TV.  There weren’t a ton of Asian-American women role models at the time when I was a vulnerable high school and college student so this was a real treat.

mom summit view

Surrounded by blue skies, crashing waves, and local surfers, the atmosphere was exhilarating.  This “conference” was more than just that… it was an experience.  I was able to speak with large brands like Honda, Whirlpool, Lowes, Treetop, and many others.   Did I mention you could get your hair and nails done by stylists from Dove and get your makeup done by Starbucks ReFreshers.  The food provided by the Ritz Carlton was fabulous as well.

mom summit dove booth

Even though I was there alone, everyone was so nice an open to talking to me.  I met so many interesting and talented women.  I ran into a blogger friend, Kara Noel from Elies Lids, whom I had met one time before and we spent a lot of the time together.  It was fantastic getting to know her better and I look forward to our new found bloggy friendship. Here are the two of us messing around and in action.

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There were so many amazing and inspiring speakers. Nia Vardalos from My Big Fat Greek Wedding spoke about her preparation or lack there-of for becoming a mom through adoption.  Her personal story was both heartwarming and hilarious! Others that stood out for me were Katherine Wintsch on her presentation and poem about why moms refuse to be honest with marketers and Rachel Faucett from Handmade Charlotte where she turned 10 pounds of beeswax into her own crafty empire.  The panels were great as well.  I was able to hear some producers of the Today’s show give tips and tricks for video strategies.

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I will never forget this Mom 2.0 Summit 2013.  My only regret? I should have taken more pictures! Gah! A huge THANK YOU to Clever Girls Collective for making this happen for me!

Follow Me!

by Dinah Wulf

Follow Me

My name is Dinah and I’m addicted to Social Media.  It’s a necessary evil and I have a love hate relationship with it.  With the tremendous growth of DIY Inspired over the last year, I thought I’d put together a list of how to follow me and what you can expect by doing so.  There are so many social media platforms out there, and I use them all for different purposes.


Follow me on Facebook.

Facebook was my first love and it is relationship I cater to at least four times a day.  You will find inspiring photos and for DIY projects, crafts, home décor, and entertaining.  Typically there is a focus on repurposing or upcycling.  The photo albums are organized by subject like, Home Organization Inspiration, Clever Craft Ideas, and Upcycled and Repurposed Furniture.  You can always check the albums in case you missed something.


Follow me on Twitter.

I have to admit that I used to hate Twitter.  I didn’t understand it; but now that I decided to take the plunge and immerse myself into it, I have to say I tweet at least four or five times a day.  It may take me a day to respond, but I will!  You will typically find links for contests and giveaways, or tweets about the causes I believe in.


Follow me on Pinterest.

My boards on Pinterest are more organized than my closet.  You will find all kinds of photo inspiration, all of which inspired me first.  If I don’t like it, I don’t pin it.  You can peruse through boards like, Repurposed Bathroom Ideas, Recycled Craft Tutorials, Wedding & bridal Shower Inspiration, or Activities for Kids.


Circle me on Google+.

Probably my most recent obsession, Google+ for me is about an online community of like-minded people.  If you’re a fellow Blogger or entrepreneur, I’d likely connect with you here. If you leave a comment, I will ALWAYS comment back!


Subscribe to me on YouTube.

I have been trying to do more video tutorials and man, it’s tough!  Watch me (and feel free to laugh) as I try to figure it all out.


Follow me on Instagram.

If you want to see the projects I’m working on before they are published or you want to see the new shoes I just bought, follow me on Instagram.


Connect with me on LinkedIn.

Like for many others, LinkedIn is my virtual resume.  You can find out what I did before DIY Inspired and see some of my accomplishments.

That’s about it!  I hope this helps and I’d be honored if you followed me!

Mr. Eco the Environmental Rap Superhero

by Dinah Wulf

Mr. Eco the Environmental Rap Superhero

I love rap and I love Mr. Eco!  In honor of the fast approaching Earth Day on April 22nd, I wanted to introduce Mr. Eco the Environmental Rap Superhero!  The environmental rap superhero Mr. Eco who has performed for over 16,000 elementary school students released his new song and music video “Recycle Robot” on YouTube. Brett Edwards, who performs as Mr. Eco, delivers environmental messages in a way that is fun and engaging to kids everywhere.

Edwards says about recycling, “When we don’t recycle it starts a downward spiral, it’s about time that this goes viral.” His goal is to empower kids to become ‘EcoHeroes’ by living sustainably and following the messages in his songs.

Check out his YouTube video.

About Mr. Eco

Brett Edwards (aka Mr. Eco) performed free assemblies for more than 16,000 elementary school students in the San Luis Obispo area in 2012 and will perform for 10,000 students in San Diego, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo and Fresno in Spring 2013. Mr. Eco is releasing his new album, “Hybrid Hip-Hop” in Whole Foods nationwide this summer and “Recycle Robot” is the first single off the album. Inspired by his love for wildlife, Edwards has made it his mission to impact our youth and create a culture of environmental activism by using catchy lyrics and a superhero persona to deliver his message in a fun and engaging way for kids. When Edwards isn’t saving the world as Mr. Eco, he attends school at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. He will be pursuing Mr. Eco full time with his team following their graduation in June. Through performances, music videos, green campaigns and songs, Mr. Eco will continue to spread his messages across all platforms and encourage others to join the environmental movement.

Retail Shopping DIY Inspiration

by Dinah Wulf

The other day I went shopping for inspiration.  I shop for inspiration because I’m too cheap to buy anything and always think in my head… hey… I can make that myself.  It’s a sickness.  Don’t judge me.  I love to go to mid-ranged and high end stores and boutiques to see what’s new and trending.  Anyway I found some fun pieces at TPT Home so I wanted to share my retail shopping DIY inspiration with you.

I love these glass vessels.  I’ve seen some DIY versions floating around online.  I definitely am going to try this with some thrift store finds.  The cheaper the better… so stay tuned!

Rope covered vase

This dresser was the first thing I saw when I walked into one of the stores.  I LOVE the industrial feel to it…the metal, the appearance of salvaged wood, and the lettering.

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Here is another similar piece that caught my eye.

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I always see vintage ladders at flea markets and they always seem a little too high priced.  But I love this idea of using two of them and add shelving using salvaged wood.  I wouldn’t even mind this piece in my family room.

Repurposed ladders

I saw this repurposed hanging shelf and thought it was so neat.  It seems like you can make it out of any old railings or posts from a porch or crib.

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Here is the other side of it.

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I’ve seen a lot of subway art and I really like the look of it.  This one really stood out to me.

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Last but not least.  I love this idea to hold jewelry.

Repurposed jewelry holder

I hope these pieces inspired you as much as they inspired me!


Astrobrights Donation Giveaway

by Dinah Wulf

Astrobrights Paper donated $30,000 total value in school supplies to an elementary school in the tiny town of Iola, TX. Astrobrights ran a Facebook campaign a few months back and Iola Elementary was chosen out of the thousands of schools entered in the ‘Give a Brighter Year’ sweepstakes.

The donation ceremony took place at halftime of Iola High School’s Friday night football game on November 2. The Iola Bulldogs went on to win 50-34 in a classic Texas shootout, while Iola Elementary School went on to win something bright of its own. The $30,000 donation took shape in over $10,000 in Astrobrights school supplies and the remaining difference of $19,926 presented to school administrators and students in a colorful, oversized check.

In current economic situations, school districts are quick to cut spending educational supplies for students, placing pressure on parents to increase spending on essential learning materials. Astrobrights Paper alleviated that pressure for a town currently struck by difficult economic conditions and experiencing significant cutbacks in educational spending.

Astrobrights Papers recently hosted the “Give A Brighter Year” sweepstakes asking students, families and teachers across North America to submit a K-8 school for a chance to win the donation of radiant paper products. By entering their favorite school, Astrobrights fans received a chance to win a $500 Gift Card for themselves and also choose the winning elementary school to receive the donation.

The donation revealed more than Astrobrights’ true colors. Lorraine Denman, the fan who submitted Iola Elementary to win the sweepstakes, donated her $500 personal prize to the students. She hosted an arts and crafts contest in each homeroom, where children were asked to show how they can help others in society, with the winning students taking home a piece of the $500 total prize.

Astrobrights Papers offers a wide assortment of high-quality, affordable paper products that come in 23 vibrant colors, so your bright ideas always get noticed. All bright-colored papers are FSC® Certified and meet the mark of responsible forestry. Astrobrights Papers is available for sale at a variety of leading office and retail outlets nationwide.

With the holidays quickly approaching and in the spirit of the Iola donation, Astrobrights wants to offer a mini donation to my readers, so they can do something meaningful for a local school, family or organization in need. One lucky winner will receive a colorful shipment of Astrobrights products ($100 value) – a true way to brighten someone’s day. Enter a giveaway for the chance to receive this opportunity from Astrobrights!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Big Ass Book of Bling

by Dinah Wulf

Last week I had the honor of attending Mark Montano’s The Big Ass Book of Bling launch party at the Craft and Folk Art Museum in Los Angeles.  I really didn’t know what to expect, but I DID know that I wanted to go and support Mark, whom I recently befriended at the Socal Social I attended last month.  I was so lucky to receive an autographed copy and had been perusing its pages every day since.  With project after fabulous project, I HAD to go to the event to check it out.

I invited a couple of my besties to join in the fun (after all, I heard there was an open bar).  We walked through the front door of the museum shop filled with one of a kind jewelry, housewares, clothing, and more all by local artists.  We were immediately greeted by some friendly faces behind a desk to get our hand stamp (a Hello Kitty one, BTW) and checked off the guest list.  We also picked up our free ring pop… yes, ring pop… bling is a must at this party!  Many of Mark’s projects were displayed in glass cases to our right and they looked even more amazing in person.  At the entrance to the party outside there was a sponsor wall, perfect for photo ops that made you feel like you were a part of the red carpet.

We walked inside (well, technically outside) and Mark was in the middle of a thank you speech. He also announced the entertainment for the evening, a folk artist named Nikko (I hope I spelled her name right!).   She was amazing with just her and her guitar, and had the most beautiful soothing voice.  Excitement was in the air as we were surrounded by an eclectic mix of people socializing and drinking, making their very own bling at the craft table, enjoying their newly purchased books, or taking pictures with people dressed in elaborate costumes and makeup.  There were even a few camera men there filming.  The bar was stocked with wine and a large selection of infused gin and vodka including every flavor from honey to blueberry.

I was lucky enough to chat with Mark a few times and he even introduced me on camera to thousands of fans on a channel that was streaming live.  I bought another book for one of my best friends that couldn’t make it and had Mark autograph it for her.  I had an amazing night overall.  These pictures don’t even do it justice.

To top it all off we left with a bag of swag filled of crafty goodness!  I am so happy for Mark and even happier that I could be there to participate in all the success of The Big Book of Bling!





Oh before you go! I had to change my Hello Kitty witch into a Hello Kitty Pilgrim!  Here she is! :)




Repurposed Inspiration from Antique Shopping

by Dinah Wulf

I can’t believe this is my 400th post!  Thought I’d celebrate by sharing a lovely event I went to.  Recently, I attended the Socal Social here in Orange County, a local get together for Bloggers.  I didn’t know what to expect, as this was the first blog conference I had ever attended.  All I have to say is, WOW! Well, OK that’s not exactly ALL I have to say.  It was fantastic and far exceeded my expectations.  From meeting the most inspiring women to finding repurposed inspiration from antique shopping all day, I had a blast.  There were lots of swag, giveaways, and even celebrity writer and television personality, Mark Montano. By the way, you have to check out his new book, The Big Ass Book of Bling!  Some of my favorite projects are jewelry made from bobby pins or safety pins.  It’s fabulous!

I spent most of the day with Loren from Pandora’s Craft Box and Jen from Something Turquois.  I was also able to chat with Barbara from Chase the Star, Tara from A Spectacled Owl, Erica from Gee Whiz Designs, among so many other amazing fellow bloggers.  Of course, our hosts were Vivienne from The V Spot and Bev from Flamingo Toes.

The event was held in the historic Orange circle if Orange, California also known as the Orange Circle Antique Mall.  Needless to say, I found some fabulous repurposed and upcycled antique finds that I wanted to share with you.

Baskets turned Wall Storage

Utensil Chandelier (Check out the spooky picture at the bottom…ew!)

Umbrella Pendant Lamp

Vintage Suitcase Vanity

Chair Swing Flower Pot

Mason Jar Glasses (love these!!)

OK, these bottles aren’t necessarily repurposed, but I thought they were pretty!

Last but definitely not least… MY FAVORITE… Bird Cage Chandelier

I can tell you how great it was to meet like-minded ambitious women that knew EXACTLY what I do day in and day out.  Thank you ladies!  I had the time of my life… until next year!


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A Submission Lost

by Dinah Wulf

Today’s post is a little different; no tutorial, no repurposing inspiration.  I just wanted to share something that I wrote in November 2011.  I had only been blogging for seven months and I was loving it.  I decided to submit a letter to be considered for the magazine, Artful Blogger.  Below is my letter.  It’s been 10 months and I haven’t gotten a response. Not even a “no thank you”.  It is now a submission lost…


I would be honored to be considered as a featured Blogger in Artful Blogger.

My blog has become like my child except it doesn’t cry or talk back and I am in complete control of it. I maintain and care for it each day. When I’m away I think about it constantly. I believe that since having it, it has made me a better person.  I am officially obsessed with it and unashamed.

April 23, 2011. That was when it all began just seven short months ago; my first blog post. What is vexing about the whole “obsession” thing is that I believe it started six months and twenty-nine days ago.  That first post was published and I was instantly hooked. I had no idea what to expect. I originally decided to blog for myself and myself only because I was a new stay at home mom and ex-workaholic that needed something to do. Writing about things I like or appreciate would keep me contented, and perhaps if anyone did stumble upon my website, just maybe I would give them a little inspiration too.

As I continued to write and research other blogs, I ended up inspiring myself rather than my initial intention of inspiring others. I could not believe how many talented and creative people there were that had my same interests.  The blogging community was just that… a community, that I was a part of now.  I’ll never forget the day I opened up my email and I had a friendly request from a reader in Holland to post a free printable that she thought suited my blog. Imagine that.  In the beginning I didn’t even think about the power of the World Wide Web, the power of literally reaching the world or at least anyone with a computer or access to one.

Although my blog is mainly DIY tutorials, I think it’s important to have those moments of reflection as well.  These posts are the ones that remind us of the beauty or people that surrounds us daily… the true inspiration. Blogging has certainly changed my perspective on life and my everyday surroundings.  I tend to stop and look a little more. I bring a camera everywhere I go for those “just in case” inspirational moments.

Through this journey I have met some people who have attempted to blog but ended up quitting.  I couldn’t imagine abandoning my “baby”. If I were to give advice to a new blogger, I’d tell them to write about what makes you happy.  Write about your passion and the readers will come.