Monday, January 30, 2012

Feature Post – A Life Designed

Do you ever come across a project you just HAVE to share to others??? Nancy from A Life Designed recently started following my blog and after spending some time on her site I fell in love with her “Project Nursery” she did for her sister. 

FIRST this toy chest makeover is too cute for words!

Next, this cabinet makeover is a perfect upcycle from old laminate cabinets she “found” in her sisters garage.
And finally the entire reveal of the Nursery makeover.  She had a TINY budget to work with and just did an absolutely amazing job on this room.  IT’S SO DARN CUTE with so many cute details.
Her amazing projects are not just limited to this uber cute nursery so be sure to give Nancy some love at A Life Designed and be sure I sent you!

(Remember if you want to Pin any of these images it's best to click through to her blog and Pin directly from her, as she deserves the traffic!)


Sunday, January 29, 2012

Our loved Sailor returns!

If you’re a regular reader of PB&Jstories you know that my husband returned home last Friday from his 8 month deployment.  It was an emotional day filled with happiness, excitement, nerves and anticipation all rolled into one. 

I hired a professional photographer to be there to take pictures during his homecoming because I was so excited to see how our three year old Jackson was going to react seeing his very much missed daddy.  We only have a handful of pictures as a family, so this was one moment in our lives I wanted to capture.

His ship was pulling into the pier at about 9:15am, and I was so sad to wake up and see that it was dark, gloomy and rainy out.   I had high hopes the rain would end quick enough before their ship was pulling up but we had no such luck. 

We braved the wind, cold and rain for about an hour before all the sailors were able to walk off the ship.  It’s a long waiting game, but being surrounded by all the families of the sailors is such an amazing experience.  His ship has 250 sailors on board and they’re all being welcomed home by family and friends.  There was even about 5 sailors that were coming home to their daughter or son whom they’ve never met before. 

Here’s a handful of pictures from the day I wanted to share with everyone.

{Keeping an eye out for the first sight of their ship}

{This one makes me giggle, but as you can tell it was windyyyy}

[First sight of the ship in full view!}

{Playing in the puddles}

{The little tug boats meeting the ship to bring them into the pier!}

{Where J started getting crabby}
Unfortunately about half hour before they walked off the ship, it started down pouring so everyone ran for cover.  They had a tent which only fit so many people, and then a tunnel in between the two piers which everyone tried cramming into.  J was so cold, wet and miserable he spent the next half hour crying his eyes out and wanting to go home. 

BUT then finally the waiting was worth it as our first sign of Billy! 





{Cold, soaking wet, but totally and completely happy to be going home as a family}

A HUGE shout out to Sean Holder for taking our pictures during such a treasured moment and baring the HORRIBLE weather conditions with me!  If you’re in the local Virginia  Beach area, I highly suggest contacting Sean Holder Photography for any photo sessions plus he even teaches classes for photography, called Virginia Photo Safari.

Another big shout out to all our family and friends that supported us during the deployment.  The love and support we received from everyone helped make the time apart a little easier.  Everyone has been so happy for us that he is home safe and sound and warms our hearts knowing that we have been in the thoughts and hearts of so many wonderful people.

Thank You.


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Willamela Story – how we became to be

A True Love Story Never Ends

My husband is returning from an 8 month long deployment in just a couple days, and I am jumping out of my skin excited to have my best friend back home with us. 

I realized that since I started blogging about 8 months ago, my blog has been a majority of DIY tutorials and home d├ęcor inspired posts.  I have done a few posts about visitors, family, trips and what I called “Jackson’s Corner” where I shared about the joys of being a mom and what J has been up too.  However, I’ve never told “my” story, and I haven’t written about my husband a lot as he has been gone since I created PB&Jstories.  With his return just hours away I wanted to get personal with you all, let you in a bit and let you get to know the Pamela & Billy of PB&Jstories. 

Where it began
I met Billy the summer after my Freshman year of college when I moved back from Iowa to Minnesota.  My group of best girl friends had known him for years and years, and somehow our paths had never crossed until that summer.  I had been “warned” about Billy before I met him, “you will have a Billy phase” “you’re guaranteed to have at least a crush on him”. He was easy to love and be comfortable with, but this I all didn’t know yet.  We first met at a friend’s bonfire one summer night and it was just a small group of us hanging out.  If I remember correctly, I was coming by after a double shift at work and wasn’t up for a night of being out so I knew I was just stopping by. 
So we met. 
We chatted and laughed.
And I thought to myself I see what they meant.
I called it an early night and as I was leaving Billy screamed out to me “I LOVE YOU” … that’s his claim to fame to this date, stating that some part knew of him we’d end up together.


We got each other’s numbers from our friends and started talking the next couple of nights, but it was all innocent.  I would stop over at his house after work for short visits and we’d talk online too.  My ladies were right about him.  He was fun, laid back, comfortable and easy to be around.  We quickly became close friends and spent almost every weekend together.  Our little group of 6 friends were pretty inseparable for that summer and months afterwards.

Distance makes the heart grow fonder
Then unexpectedly Billy told me he was moving back to Arizona for a while.  We still weren’t officially dating at that time, or even really considered an “item”.  But I knew I thought of him as more than just a best friend, he was someone I truly cared about.  But, life was life and we said our “see ya laters” and he went back to Arizona and I was still up in Minnesota.  We kept in contact on a daily basis, but dated other people and that was that for about several months. 

After keeping in close contact with that distance my “Billy phase”continued to grow in my heart.  I knew he was someone special, but things were simple with us and I knew I couldn’t push anything because at that time, bottom line was we were best friends and I was happy to have him in my life as that.  Then the wonderful day came and he moved back to Minnesota.

We went from hanging out every weekend, to spending every day together.  I was in college at the University of Minnesota, and he would spend days at a time at our apartment.  Know those times you look back on your life and feel you were carefree and barely had any responsibilities?  Those were my days.  Besides going to class, I spent almost every moment with Billy.  He’d go to the library while I studied with me, he helped me work on my videography projects, and he was there ready to make us dinner or go do whatever we wanted at any given time.  Before we knew it Billy had unofficially moved in with us, and yet – we still weren’t officially a couple.


We truly did spend two years being best friends and learning every little detail about one another first.  We spent almost every moment with one another, we would fight, we would go out and have fun, we would just sit around watching TV, we just did as best friends did. 

I was ready to be more than just best friends for quite some time before we took that leap.  I was waiting on Billy, for him to say he was ready to not just be best friends, but to officially be dating.  He however, took his time before he was ready.

Looking back on it, boy that one is lucky I kept waiting Winking smile

Making the leap
Everyone knew by this point that “Billy & Pam” wasn’t just a phase.  We had something special, every one could see it, we both knew it too, I think we just were a bit nervous to make that leap from best friends to a serious relationship. 

Then a special weekend came.
I went down to Iowa State for my best friend’s birthday celebration and an OAR concert that was playing on Campus.  Her and I have been huge fans of OAR for quite some time and were super excited to be going.  After the super amazing concert, we headed back to her apartment when she declared that she was going to go back and wait by their tour buses to meet them.  As best friend’s do I said “oh hells yeah” and we ran back to wait to see if we could even catch a glimpse of the band.  Lucky for us we were the only two girls waiting there and luck on our side when the band came through we actually got to talking with them for a bit!  Typical “we love you guys, amazing concert oh my god can we get your pictures!?” They kindly humored us and posed for pictures and then continued to chat with us and offered to give us front row tickets and back stage passes for the next nights concert back up in Minneapolis.  We eagerly accepted and started making our plans to make the drive back up to Minneapolis the next morning for their concert.

So the very next night I’m bouncing off the walls excited getting ready for the concert again and to hang out with OAR after the concert back stage.  Billy was at my apartment while I was getting ready and said he’d just stay there so I could come back after the show and we could hang out too.
Fast forward a few hours and I come back after an amazing concert and all on cloud 9 from my “night of celebrities” and returned home to hang out with my best friend Billy.
About as soon as I walked in the door he sat me down and said he had something to ask me.
After a very sweet question I squealed of happiness as Billy and I were officially official.

He said that night his reason being was he knew I was going to always do great things in life and meet amazing people and do incredible things and he wanted to be sure he was apart of it each and every step of the way.  Essentially he was nervous he’d lose me to some big hot shot celebrity, ya know, because I’m cool like that.

7 (2)

The rest is history up until our next exciting several months of engagement and baby J but that’s for another time and another post. Smile

Billy and Pam

Now that you know a little more about the infamous “Willamela” team
William + Pamela = Willamela {perfection right?!}

I hope you all will be right along the side of me as I get to finally welcome home my best friend that’s been gone for the last 8 months!!!!

I will be doing another post including our next “back story” of all the juicy details or our engagement, wedding & first baby.

Have you done a personal post that lets your readers in and get to know you on a personal level?? I’d love it if you’d leave a comment and share so we can all get to know one another a little better!


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

My Hide-Away Printer Project


You’ve already seen my filing trunk that I revealed last week which helped with papers and organizing for my desk area.  Now I am excited to reveal my hide-away printer!

My husband and I hang almost all our clothes so we weren’t making the most of our Hemnes Ikea dresser and I did not want a big printer out in the open in my “office area” since it’s right in our Master Bedroom.  So I did a complete make-shift DIY project and turned one of the drawers into a fold down hide-away printer area.  Then I used the drawer above it to store all my extra office goods like paper, scissors, pens, paper clips etc…

I don’t have the best tutorial and how to pictures for this project because it was COMLETELY make-shift as I went.  I literally went to Lowe’s and bought like 20 different items I thought may be able to help me make it work, came home dumped them all out and started at it.

My {sort of} How To Turn a Drawer into a Hide-Away Printer

If you’re familiar with the Hemnes dresser from Ikea you know that the drawer fronts are attached with wooden dowels and two metal screws.  I removed all the pieces allowing the front panel piece to be free-standing.


Next, the particle board bottom is grooved into the front panel piece so in order for it to be able to fold down and back up the bottom board couldn’t go into that groove anymore so I just used an x-acto knife and cut it off.


Out of all the goods I bought these were the two that ended up being what I used.   I used three 2&half” utility hinges and a right hand and left hand support hinge.
DSC_3762b     DSC_3766b

I don’ t have any pictures of how I went about attaching this all together because it was one big hot mess. 
For each hinge (one on the far left, on the far right, and in the exact middle) I cut away a part of the bottom so the center of the hinge would sit in that area.  Then supporting the front panel laying flat open, I screwed the hinge into place into the bottom drawer piece and the front panel.  The bottom particle board is very thin so the screws of the hinge stick out through the bottom.  To be sure they didn’t rip back out I used a size 6 washer and bolt on the underside of the drawer to help secure the hinge into place. 


I wish I had a few more pictures and better descriptions of what I did but from this picture I hope you get the idea of how it’s composed together.
The last and final step drilling a small hole in the back of the drawer (through the bottom) to feed the power cable through to the printer.  Our printer is wireless which I would imagine is crucial in being able to do this for your own project.  The only cable leaving our printer is the power cable which made this a convenient project to do. 


As mentioned I use the drawer above the printer drawer to store the remainder of my office needs that would typically go into your desk drawer.  Now our Hemnes dresser is a fully functional piece of furniture in our bedroom as a half dresser – half office organizer!
DSC_4881bb DSC_4887c

Once again, here’s another big sneak peek at our Master Bedroom reveal, and between this and my filing trunk post you’ve now seen all four walls of our room.  I’m putting together a final master reveal and can’t wait to show off all the little details.  I am in LOVE with the big large frame that my best friend gave me that fit perfectly around our TV.

Using some books stacked on top of our DVR it helps blend in the DVR and DVD player as a collection.  The big yelllow vase was a make over I showed here, and I love love love my big beautiful “S”.


So what do you think!? Am I the only crazy enough one to go about such a “cosmetic” project for the sole purpose to hide a printer?  This one came so close to becoming a big epic #fail but in the end it worked and I’m so happy! 

Last final stage of my little office area will be hiding those cables!  I haven’t come up with any super great ideas yet so still working on that one. 

Linked up with these great parties and the others found here:
Weekend Wrap Up Party - Tatertots and Jello
Furniture Feature Friday - Miss Mustard SeedTip Me Tuesday - Tip Junkie
Tutes and Tips Tuesday - HomeStories A to Z
Get Your Craft on Tuesday - Today's Creative Blog


Monday, January 23, 2012

Another adventure! Joining the Daily Do It Yourself team!

Have you heard of Daily Do It Yourself yet?  It's a GREAT site that recently opened its doors that show cases projects that YOU create.  Be sure to check it out if you haven't yet, and even submit your favorite projects, or your own amazing work.


Well my exciting news today is now you can find me on Daily Do It Yourself as a contributor!  I'll be searching high and low in the bloggy world to find amazing projects that you've created, and showcasing them on the site.  I'm so excited to join the team with Jenna, from SAS Interiors, to bring you the best of the best in the bloggy world!


I'd love it if you'd take a moment to stop by DDIY and become a follower so you don't miss out any the wonderful showcases of amazing projects! 


Sunday, January 22, 2012

One woman’s trash is another persons gold

I have been so blessed and happy to have had such support from buyers so far for my PB&Jcreations business.  I have been a busy busy girl with it too! 
A lot of my pieces have been custom made pieces – which if you’re interested, don’t be afraid to ask!  I love creating these and knowing that someone has a piece of art in their home that is exactly what they wanted and unique for them. 
I made this sign for a close blogger friend and sadly after it was completed I noticed two big OOPS on it.  Two letters were painted crooked Sad smile SO! I was about to toss it out when I thought I’d give the opportunity to see if any of my PB&J readers would be interested in it?? Small glitch & all.

It measures 11.25”x18”3/4th” and the letters are painted in a bright white with a nice dark brown as the background.  The edges have been lightly distressed and has a sawtooth hanger on the back, ready to hang. 
I’m offering it for free to anyone that would be interested!  Only cost would be the $10 for shipping.


Crooked “I” and “H” Sad smileBUT! For FREE would you like it in your home?

First to leave a comment with their paypal email address will be the lucky recipient,
and I’ll send them an invoice for the shipping cost. 

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