Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Getting Mold Out of the Shower–Before & After

EDIT:  This post, which started out with about 6 comments from my followers when first posted back in 2012, has now gone viral on Pinterest - as of 2/24/16 it has received well over 5 million views! Insanity.  Clearly I am NOT alone in my quest to get rid of the moldy grout. :)  I simply shared my story of removing my nasty, embarrassing mold from my window-less bathroom.  I am not a contractor, a plumber, or any kind of house expert.  I'm just a stay-at-home-mom with a mold problem in her shower that wanted to get rid of it before her mother-in-law came to visit. :)  I used to respond to comments on this post, but there are simply too many for me to keep up with.  Using bleach is not for everyone, so I encourage you to make your own decision about whether this will work in your house - I simply shared what worked for me.  Thank you for stopping by and I hope you'll poke around This Blessed Life a little while you are here!  Have a great day. :)

{And as a VERY important disclaimer....if you have old caulking, like I did, REPLACE IT! We have since replaced ours since I wrote this post years ago.  Using the bleach is a temporary solution, but I highly recommend replacing it or hiring a professional so that you don't have water come through behind your shower wall!} 


I’m lowering my pride today and showing you something only because I think it will help others in my predicament. 

Okay, are you with me? :)

When we first moved into our new house last May, the shower was pristine.  The woman who lived here had 5 little boys, was pregnant with the 6th, homeschooled, and the house was always ridiculously clean and uncluttered.  I can’t decide if she was crazy or superwoman – or maybe a touch of both. :)

Anyway, over about 6 months, mold started to creep in on the grout along the shower.  It kept spreading and spreading, and there was really nothing I could do because my husband told me not to scrub too hard or else the grout would disappear and then we’ve have mold inside the walls and then we’d have real problems, not just cosmetic ones. 

Then one day while browsing Pinterest I came across a post that showed how to get rid of shower mold with just two simple items: bleach and cotton beauty coils, used for perms.  (I am SO sorry to the smart person behind this idea but I do not have the original link – I also apologize for how dark these photos are but our bathroom doesn’t have a window.)

So I went to Sally’s Beauty supply and picked up a package. I’m pretty sure it was only $1.99 – and I already had bleach, obviously, so this project only cost $2! Whoo hoo!

Here is the before shot (barf - remember, our bathroom has no window since it's in the interior of our house, so it's pretty dark in there and it's not like sunlight can beam into the shower all day long):

I cut a piece of the cotton coil, soaked it in bleach, and let it sit overnight on the mold.  (Tip: I put a disposable pie pan in the tub, poured the bleach in the pan, then soaked the cotton in there before transferring it to the mold – helps with the dripping!  Then I just used a q-tip to press it into the mold so I wouldn’t get bleach on my fingers):

Look at the difference just on that little bit!  Isn’t that incredible?!

And here’s a picture after I was finished - I ran the fan ALL NIGHT LONG to ventilate:

A-mazing!!  I did this almost two months ago, and the mold has not returned – but it’s so awesome to know that if it does, I know what to do now!

Hopefully this helps someone else out there who just can’t get rid of the mold in their own shower.  Don’t judge me too harshly – I promise I really do keep a clean house otherwise! Although seeing these pictures makes me realize that the walls of my shower could really use a good scrubbing.  This is the trouble with a bathroom that doesn’t have a window in it – you don’t see things very clearly.  Okay, I guess I know what my next project is! lol

Linking up to: Homemaker’s Challenge

Homemakers Challenge

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Target, Goodwill and Resale Finds

It has been a SUPER long time since I showed my thrifted finds on the blog!  Some of you may groan when people write posts like this, but I personally find it fascinating.  I loooove seeing what other people score at yard sales and thrift stores.  Don’t ask why; I just do. :)

Target has been having clearance off all of their Valentine’s décor.  I went one day and scored these magazine holders, some felt rick-rack, and the pink paper tray for 50 cents each (pink is my favorite color so I gotta incorporate it in small doses around the house when I can! lol). 

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{sorry, I know it’s blurry}


Then I went back just a few days later and everything was 70% off!  I snagged three more holders and the magnetic letters for Luke for just 30 cents each!  The red frame was on clearance for $1.49 and originally had a Valentine’s matte; I just pulled it out and now it’s goes great in Luke’s big boy room.  The Dove dark chocolates were on sale for $1.99….and you better believe that package got ripped open in the parking lot – they’re just lucky I didn’t open it in the store.  :) I also scored some big chocolate-caramel chocolate bars for my husband but those never made it into the picture. :)

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Our local Goodwill has 50% off on major holidays – I don’t know if President's Day qualifies as a major holiday, but they always have a sale and I’m not complaining!  I didn’t find much – but I’m happy with what I did find.  

A new fitted green crib sheet for Luke ($1), a blue frame for Luke’s room (50 cents) and a nice wooden one for the living room (50 cents):

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A small under-the-bed storage box (I’m always looking for more of these to store the clothes Luke grows out of!) for $2.50 and a little plastic organizer for 50 cents. 

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But my MOST favorite, happy-dance find was this vintage chalkboard for TWO DOLLARS!  I am so in love with this thing.  It has two hooks to hang in the back and a little rail at the bottom for chalk.  When the weather warms up just a little bit more, I’m going to paint the wood a bright, happy yellow.  Perfect for the playroom!  I was so excited. :)

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I’m also part of a local resale group on Facebook (I’ve mentioned it before here), and I found this adorable toddler sleigh bed for Luke!  She was originally asking $50 and I asked her if she would take $40 and she did.  I am so NOT a fan of the giant chunky racecar plastic beds for kids (nothing personal, just not my style).  This is going to be painted a happy bright red to pop against his light blue walls.  We haven’t even told him about it yet because right now he loves his crib and who are we to mess with a good thing? :)


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So that’s just a few of the things that I’ve found lately!  Hopefully I didn’t bore you to tears!  lol

Linking up to:


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Year of the Hot Mom {Week 6 Check-In}

Hello lovely readers!  Did you all have a great day yesterday?  Raise your hand if you are sick of seeing what people’s husbands bought them for Valentine’s Day on Facebook!  (Um, meeeeee! hahaha)  My husband did get me something very small and thoughtful but I am purposely NOT putting it on the blog.  You can breathe a sigh of relief!  haha

Anyway, I wanted to check back in with you all about my Year of the Hot Mom Challenge.  Yup, I’m still sticking with it! 

After 6 weeks, here are my stats:

I’ve only lost 4.6 pounds (*sniff*),


I’ve lost a total of 8 inches all over my body!  Whoo hoo!!!  (I took my first measurements on January 14th, which was about 2 weeks in, so technically I’ve probably lost more inches than that overall.)

Most significant was my (natural) waist – I’ve lost TWO inches!! Isn’t that crazy?! My stomach was a close 2nd (belly-button area) with a total of 1 and 3/4 inches lost. 

Least significant was my arms – a total of ZERO inches lost – not even a quarter of an inch.  Isn’t that crazy?!  And I have been lifting weights and everything!  (Does anyone know a great workout that is guaranteed to give good results on arms?  I was using 2 pound weights and then switched to 8-pounders when a friend let me borrow hers.  I do a variety of arm exercises but clearly they’re not cutting it!  If you have a link online or a video suggestion or really anything at all for arms, I would love the advice!)

Moving forward from here, I’m going to continue working out on my elliptical 6 days most weeks (occasionally it’s 5 depending on how busy I am at night).  I’m going to strive to really streamline my portions and my snacking to keep that weight loss moving forward!  Right now I am 1.4 pounds away from my goal of losing a pound per week.  I’m hoping over the next 6 weeks I can make up the difference!  That would require me to lose 7.4 pounds in 6 weeks.  Sounds like cake for most people, but not for my sloth-like metabolism body. 

But I have nothing to lose except weight, right?! lol 

Three final thoughts:

1.  I strongly recommend taking your measurements if you are going to begin a weight-loss journey.  I would be SO bummed out about a measly 4.6 pounds if it weren’t for the 8 inches I’ve lost in addition!  They’re less than $2 at Wal-Mart and SO worth the investment, in my opinion!


2.  It’s a crazy, weird, awesome feeling to read any magazine article about exercise and to count myself in with “those people” now.  I work out!  I’m an exerciser!  I get more than the recommended amount of exercise per week!  Whoo hoo!! It’s a crazy new world, baby! lol

3.  This is probably sick and twisted but I always think about weight loss in terms of butter! hahahaha So even though 4.6 pounds in 6 weeks isn’t that awesome, it’s still like losing almost EIGHTEEN STICKS OF BUTTER from my body.  LOL!


If you’ve been trying to work out or watch what you eat, let me just encourage you to KEEP GOING! You ARE worth it and you DO deserve to feel good about yourself!

(If anyone has any tips about how to help tone my arms, pretty please share in the comments!! :)

Monday, February 13, 2012

Miscellany Monday {15}– Our Weekend

As of Saturday, we are officially “ONE AND ONE” in our adoption process! What that means is that we have ONE parenting class and ONE home visit left until we are good to go! Whoo hooo!!! (We are still waiting on our fingerprints to come back from the state but those are estimated to be ready about March 7th.)

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Our social worker – who is awesome, by the way – said that he thinks we’ll be ready by mid-March. I’m saying April 1st so I don’t get my hopes up. (haha) We are SO ready to welcome another kiddo into our house!



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I painted my nails yesterday.  It’s seriously ridiculous how grown-up I feel with dark nails.  hahaha! {Color is “Mink Muffs”}.  Thanks to my friend Kathy for suggesting the color and my husband for buying it for me for Christmas.  :)


Do you see these two pictures?  What do they have in common? 

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Um…they should never be taken on February 13th!  Seriously…sugar ants in the bathroom (of all places!) and crocuses literally about 8 inches tall (I know, lovely landscaping – it will be improved this spring!)  It’s a crazy winter but I’m not complaining for one second. 


We went to Moe’s on Saturday night for dinner.   It was good but it was no Chipotle!  (I am a die-hard Chipotle lover.)  The food doesn’t taste as good and they move you along super fast and they have these glass barriers between you and the food when you order.  Except I literally had to stand on my tip-toes so they could hear me since the glass is so high and I’m pretty short.  I seriously felt like I was 8 years old.  However, they do serve grass-fed beef in their menu so to that I say, WELL DONE Moe’s!  Oh and a girl can’t complain about free chips and salsa.  :) Luke was so, so good for us which was such a blessing.  Toddler boys and restaurants don’t usually mix well.  Can I get an amen?!


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Crazy that Valentine’s Day is tomorrow!  (Wasn't it just Christmas Eve?!)  Chris and I aren’t doing anything special since my parents are already kind enough to watch Luke once a week for us while we go to our parenting class, and we don’t want to stretch them too thin.  However, my husband did say he is getting me something “small” so of course I am looking forward to seeing what Tuesday brings!

What about you?  Do you go all out on Valentine’s Day or is it pretty low-key at your house?  I know some people hate it and some people love it so I’m curious to know.  If it was solely up to me it would be overflowing with flowers and gifts and nights out but clearly I am only one half of this relationship! haha

Happy Monday! 


Linking up with:

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Valentine’s Décor Around Our House

Hey guys! Nope, I didn’t fall off the face of the earth!  Just a verrrrrry busy few weeks for us, that’s all.  So busy that we completely took the day off today, even from church.  And we are all still our pajamas!  Love it! 

I do try to decorate for every holiday, but for Valentine’s day I keep it pretty simple. When we have older kids that know what the day means, I will emphasize it more, but for now it’s pretty basic.  But I can’t let a holiday go by without some acknowledgment – it’s the teacher in me.  Especially if the holiday involves PINK! haha


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Here’s what you see when you first walk in our door.  The small watercolor print was a freebie sent by e-mail via Jones Design Company.  (You can sign up for her e-mails on her blog!  Love her!). 

The larger heart was done by Luke.  I love it!  Originally, I taped a heart over a piece of paper and was hoping that when I pulled the heart off, all you would see is a white outline of a heart (kinda like the smaller print).  Unfortunately, it didn’t really work out the way I wanted it to, so I just decided to stick with the smaller heart and frame it.  I think I actually like this way better!


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{Here’s my little boy painting.  Oooooh do I love him!}

In the bathroom I framed this adorable (free!) subway print, courtesy of Bonjour Blog via Pinterest.  How cute is that?! And I call Luke “love bug” all the time, so that’s a fun little touch. 

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In the kitchen I changed the chalkboard over from a Christmas verse to a “love”-based verse.  That chalkboard was a piece of the most hideous abstract art from Goodwill you’ve ever seen, but it’s super sturdy so I just rolled chalkboard paint on it this past summer and now it works perfectly. 

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On the stove I just have a heart-shaped plate from Goodwill with a Goodwill candle on top.  Super simple.

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In the living room I have a little wannabe-mantel going on (and it is IMPOSSIBLE to get good lighting since it’s right in front of the window – sorry!).  You can see my Valentine’s mantel from two years ago here. 

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I used a lot of the same elements from two years ago (remember I couldn’t decorate for Valentine’s day last year since we didn’t have our house yet!). 


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The thrifted Eiffel Tower was brought back out, along with the XOXO from TJMaxx (one of my favorite shopping finds EVER!).  I wrapped some pink tulle that I got at a yard sale forever ago around the letters, and took some of my bracelets that had pinkish hues and wrapped them around the votive candle. 


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You can see how I made the vintage-looking prints here. 


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The plate is also thrifted from Goodwill and the little birdie was only $2.99 at Target!  (Totally will be reusing it for springtime, too.) 


So there you go!  Pretty basic but still marks the holiday going by. 

My goal is to be back tomorrow – see you then!  Enjoy the rest of your Sunday!