...because home doesn't happen overnight.

engineer print trend 4

Framed engineer prints are everywhere. Have you seen them? I especially love the ones featured here, here and here. I had been looking for a large piece of artwork to hang in the boys’ room when it dawned on me that an engineer print might be the ticket.

I had taken a photo with my phone of Layne and Everett on our recent trip to Florida. They’re mid-air jumping into a pool and it just exudes BOY. I had the photo blown up into a 2′ x 3′ black and white engineer print at Staples. (I quickly ordered the print online.) One day and $3 later, I had the print in hand. Since the print was so inexpensive, I “splurged” on a wood poster frame.

The print isn’t the highest quality and the paper is thin but for $3 I wasn’t expecting perfection. Also, the image doesn’t fill out the entire 3′ length – it’s more like 32″. This probably has something to do with the fact that I took the photo using the VSCO app. I might DIY a mat but next time I want the image to fill the entire frame. The frame itself is nice for a poster frame. The wood gives it a more expensive look and the facing is acrylic (not glass) which is ideal for a kids’ room.

engineer print trend 3

Layne and Everett LOVE it and that’s all that matters anyway. The plan is to switch out the print for a current photo of the boys each year. I really like the idea of this being a feature that evolves as the boys grow. And at $3 per print, we can afford to change the imagery whenever boredom strikes.

Have you tried enlarging a candid photo into an engineer print yet? It’s so easy and inexpensive and instantly adds personality to any space.

images: Dana Miller for House*Tweaking

07.12.14 / Made Me Smile

nature walk

At the beginning of the summer, the kids and I made a pact to hit up as many parks as possible before school was back in session. We’ve hit up over a dozen so far and it has been so much fun! I’ve been giving the kids free rein on deciding where we end up with the only stipulation being no parking / admission fees. We’ve discovered creeks, bridges, stone stairways, swimming holes and the ideal picnic site. Sometimes I daydream of living somewhere more scenic, more exotic but our recent nature walks have brought on a new appreciation for this place we call home.

A few smile-worthy links from around the web…

*…and now I want to explore more of Weird Ohio.

*Hollywood takes on Cincinnati.

*Captain Pizza.

portable treehouse

*A portable, suspended treehouse.

*Ikea ranked “highest in customer satisfaction with kitchen cabinets” in J.D. Power study. (You can see how Ikea stands up to other brands here.)

*Love this look.

*Gray-green in the kitchen is hot right now.

Have a wonderful weekend! Maybe squeeze in a nature walk.

images: 1) Dana Miller for House*Tweaking 2) Tentsile

06.23.14 / DIY Bullseye Art

Things are moving right along in the boys’ bedroom.

Currently, this lil’ corner of their room is a new family favorite. Layne requested the reading chair. I added a vintage ottoman and dresser (off to the side) for added comfort and storage, respectively. With the major furniture pieces in place, I’ve turned my attention to accessories and art. Ever since Apartment Therapy featured this home tour, I’ve been itching to DIY some bullseye art and this corner seemed like the perfect place for it.

glidden DIY

With the help of Glidden® paint, I was able to pull it off. Here’s what I did:

bullseye DIY

1 – I used a square canvas (found in my attic) and two quarts of Glidden paint in blue-grey and fire engine red. First, I painted the entire canvas a warm white that I already had on had. This step is the secret to achieving nice smooth curves in the final product so don’t skip it! (You can easily touch up stray brushstrokes with the white paint later on.) I let the white paint dry completely.

2 – I found the center of the canvas then used a pencil to trace a large pot lid right in the center. This would later become the inner curve of the outermost bullseye ring. I determined how thick I wanted my outer ring then cut a length of string accordingly and tied one end to my pencil and the other end to the handle of the pot lid. Holding the lid in place, I carefully drew a larger circle around the pot lid. I had my outer bullseye ring.

3 – For the inner bullseye, I traced around a small glass container in the center of the canvas.

4 – My pencil lines were faint which made them easy to edit and also easy to paint over.

5 – Working from the center out, I painted the canvas using foam brushes and a steady hand. I gave the center bullseye and outer ring two coats of paint each. After the paint dried for 30-60 minutes, I went back with the white paint used in step #1 to touch up any brushstrokes that inevitably made their way out of the lines.

DIY bullseye art via House*Tweaking

I decided to frame the canvas with inexpensive wood trim. I left the wood unfinished for a casual look. I think the thin frame is the perfect touch!

DIY bullseye art via House*Tweaking

Glidden paint made it easy to finally turn my inspiration into reality. The boys LOVE the bullseye art! They keep telling me how cool it is. I think the bullseye is a great symbol to use in a boy’s room without feeling too theme-y. What do you think?

FYI – Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Glidden paint through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select. While I was compensated to write about Glidden paint, all opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog!

images: Dana Miller for House*Tweaking

Progress in the kid / guest bathroom is slow-going.

kid bath progress

Steve started tiling the back wall. It’s proved to be a challenge. The wall is wonky and there’s a window and Steve’s a perfectionist soooo…it’s taking a while but we’ll get there. The other walls shouldn’t be as tricky.

Since it looks like we’re going to be sharing one bathroom for a little longer, I decided to do something I’ve been meaning to for a while.

slow closing potty lid 1

I replaced the flimsy plastic toilet seat and lid in the master bathroom. It changed my life.

The toilet came with the house. We decided to keep it. (We actually wanted to keep the toilet in the kid / guest bath, too, but it was accidentally broken during a renovation mishap. Oops.) I’ll never forget the looks of passersby as I was cleaning the toilet in the front yard…with a garden hose…while eight months pregnant. THE HORROR.


I went to Home Depot and had way too much fun playing with all the toilet seats. It’s almost embarrassing how many special features there are. You know, considering some places in the world don’t even have proper sewage systems. But it didn’t stop me from wanting all. the. features. Built-in potty seat? Yes. Removable and easy-to-clean? Yessssss. Whisper-soft and slow-closing? GIVE IT TO ME.

I ended up with this tricked out seat + lid. Installation was super easy. Gross but super easy. Once I had removed the disgusting bolts holding the old seat in place I couldn’t get the new clean one installed fast enough. It took me all of 10 minutes. And that was with a toddler “helping” me. The new seat and lid are made of molded wood so it’s sturdier than the cheap plastic we had before. Our toilet is round and the new seat is about ½” too long but it doesn’t seem to affect its function.

slow-closing potty lid 2

There’s a built-in potty seat which Mabrey has already claimed. I really like this feature since we don’t have room for a separate training potty. The potty seat is removable so when we’re past the potty-training phase we can take it off. A magnet holds the smaller potty seat to the lid when non-toddler derrière use the toilet. The potty seat is plastic – not wood.

Another awesome feature is the soft-closing mechanism which keeps the lid and seat from slamming shut. Everett graciously demonstrates this toilet *magic* here. I love this feature. When the boys use the bathroom during the night or early in the morning while Steve and I are sleeping, I’m not jolted awake by the sound of the toilet seat slamming anymore. It’s the equivalent of hanging blackout shades in an infant’s room. Anything for five more minutes of sleep! Between our soft-closing kitchen cabinets & drawers, bathroom vanity and now toilet, I’m going to be slamming all the things at every house I visit.

potty lid unlock

In case I need to remove the seat + lid for cleaning purposes (from the looks of our old toilet seat bolts apparently I need to), the entire piece can be unlocked from the bolts and lifted off.

slow closing potty lid 3

In summary, maybe you can’t teach an old dog new tricks but you can teach an old toilet new tricks.

images: Dana Miller for House*Tweaking