Small Shelf Refinish Project

Super easy project for anyone with a screwdriver and some paint!

I bought this little shelf at a flea market for a few dollars. I have found them elsewhere, like a local Goodwill, so just go bargain hunting! You will find one eventually.

This project was very easy.  I made this as a gift for my mother for her birthday.

  • Carefully remove all ‘stair’ posts, unscrew any hardware, etc
  • Add a saw tooth hanger on the back (if necessary- mine already had one), add fresh knobs (mine  knobs are from Hobby Lobby).  If you use their 40% off coupons it offsets the $5 per knob cost.
  • We did have to saw off the metal part of the knobs, as they were too long. A hacksaw and elbow grease will do the trick.
  • Sand off any existing lacquer.
  • Paint white and then distress by using medium grit sandpaper.



Fill old mugs or cups with dirt and succulents and put on the shelf!

This is a great way to re-purpose old chipped mugs. Even better if they have sentimental value! I cannot take credit for this idea, my mother came up with it!

A Harry Potter Halloween!

We had a fun  Halloween Design on a dime post last year and of course we had to top it this year with a mega themed Harry Potter extravaganza at my house!

I woke up a few Saturday mornings ago to decorate our home, yelling “Halloween 2016 Extravaganza is finally here!”  I’m serious, ask my husband. I used jazz hands.  I worked on the décor for the past few months when time allowed.  Overall I spent about $60-70 total.


Ask me how?

I bought the wood for the main sign in the Menards scrap wood section for about $.60 each. The post was free and the wood ball on top was $3 at a flea market.  Eyelet screws- $2 a pack at the flea market.  The large piece of wood for the orange Wizard sign was a dumpster dive.  I know, I have a problem.  It was by a neighbors trash actually. Just SITTING there, waiting for me.

I used pie pumpkins $2 each for the ‘Believe in Magic’ and Harry Potter pumpkins. The tombstones and cat I sawed from scrap bin plywood- $7 total.  The most expensive items were the purple lights and the spiders at $5 each.  My in laws graciously delivered the hay bale to me!


The Dollar Tree rounded out the display with $1 bird skeletons, creepy flowers,  witches hats, spiderwebs, and the hanging skeletons (Dementors).

I also spent a few dollars here and there picking up picture frames for the ‘Wanted’ signs on the front porch.

All other materials I scrounged up from around my home or they were remnants from previous years!

Yes, we already owned a wooden owl…

The owl was painted white to resemble Hedwig, Harry’s owl. My son helped me paint it, I like to involve my kids when I can in projects. He was also outside helping us decorate.

The Harry Potter Pumpkin was a Pinterest based idea.  I used an old t-shirt cut up and painted to make his scarf. A few spiders here and there completed the decor on the hay bale.


Hogwarts Signs

I wanted the white sign to represent diversity, so I painted an all inclusive monster listing at the bottom. All Are Welcome! Dragons, Elves, Dwarfs, Muggles, Trolls , and Goblins!


The orange sign was originally going to be about ‘spells and potions.’ This sign actually spawned the entire Harry theme idea.  Black silhouette details  were free-hand painted at the top and wood accents at the bottom…

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Putting a spotlight on the display makes it visible at night…img_9193

Harry Potter ‘Locales’ sign

I am super proud of this one, the interchangeable signs makes this a piece I can use for years to come for various seasons.  I can change out the hanging wood signs.  In an effort to reuse, I’ll be painting Christmas words on the back of these.  The entire sign was made super cheap with materials from scrap bins and flea markets!

Adding details like the ball on top, the hardware, and orange lantern give it great detail!
















Hanging Hats

Dollar Tree hats were simply strung up with twine…


Death Eater Graveyard

Of course the Villains need to be gone and in the ground!

The tombstone were super easy and made of discount plywood cut with a jigsaw. I painted them grey and then splattered with black paint.

The graveyard is accented by black and purple flowers in vases and skulls. I added spiderwebs on the tree behind it. Actually, my father worked on that part!


Enough plywood was leftover to make a spooky cat.  Very easy to cut with a jigsaw…my daughter loves it!




  1. Old pictures frames painted to look weathered
  2. Print black and white copies of the Wanted posters from the movie
  3. Stain with coffee grounds. Simply rub wet (cooled) coffee grounds gently onto the paper to stain
  4. Crinkle paper into a ball, smooth back out and gently blow dry on warm setting
  5. Add to frames

Hogwarts Express Sign

You can buy wood rounds like this for under $6. Stain the wood and paint is all you really need to do. It was going to be on a tree, but then, of course, it needs to be on a brick wall like in Harry Potter!

Magic Wands

Again, super easy and your kids can help!


  1. Scrounge up knobby looking sticks at your local park
  2. Paint a dark base color, like black or dark grey
  3. Add glimmer or sparkle paint accents
  4. Decorate a mason jar and label ‘Wands’ or ‘Magic Wands’

Add additional Halloween Signs and Lighting

We added two spotlights. One on the hay bale display and one on the graveyard display. Two sets of purple string lights in the tree. My indoor windows are also lit up with orange and purple strings lights.

I bought a battery operated strobe light at a Dollar Tree I’ll put behind the tombstones on Halloween night.  A battery operated LED red light will be dropped into the witches cauldron also.

I also made a few other simple Halloween signs and of course you need a scarecrow!

Cement Pumpkins

A how to make cement pumpkin tutorial from last year is linked here. I love these because they will last forever! All you need is cement (mortar mix is what I use)-$3 for a 10 lb bag and glass vases or rubber balls.


Spooky Details

The wood piece in the background is from salvaged from two chairs I picked up from the side of the road.  Spooky cloth, a cauldron, and a broom completes this area.

The fence was $5 at a garage sale, I simply painted it grey. We added some large spiders on the front porch hanging from spooky cloth!







My son requested a Batman lantern. A friend gave me this lantern, she got it from  a Goodwill I believe.

A lantern has 4 sides, so you can easily customize each side! I added this Harry Potter quote (I made a faux pas with the text verbiage- see if you can figure it out).

“Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.”


‘Believe in Magic’ Pumpkins

Pumpkins painted white with glitter paint accents added.  Squirt a big blob of paint around the stem, then ‘drag’ a paint brush down for a ‘dripping’ effect.


I used a Sharpie oil based paint marker for the words and a spray of outdoor sealant.


Indoor Décor: 

The ‘Wicked Witch Lives Here’ and ‘Enter if You Dare’ sign tutorial is found here on Genbumom.  The Trick or Treat blocks were made from leftover scrap wood. Never throw out your scraps- make a scrap bin.  Reduce and reuse folks!

This piece is for sale on Genbumom Creations…

A few other Genbumom Creations signs made for others and a few I fell in love with and kept for myself!

And of course, the cutest little monsters ever…

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I hope you enjoyed our little Halloween display. It’s fun, kid friendly, and you can do this on a budget with a lot of scrap wood, paint, and some creativity!





Marigold Mason Jars 

A fun (and simple) fall craft! Stuff marigold tops in a mason jar. Instant fall decor perfect for a mantle, table centerpiece, or outdoors!

I like to paint my Mason Jar lids but you can leave them as-is also. Scout out discount stores for used mason jars (reduce and reuse). They are often cheaper that way! I purchased mine at Goodwill for .69 each. Deal!


Add a burlap flower or ribbon… tie a small wood letter to the jar with twine to customize and give as gifts. Add a mini pumpkin, acorns, or pine cones to the bottom of the jar.


The possibilities are endless!  My kids picked our last few ‘green’ tomatoes and put in this bucket. This prop was used as part of a fall photo shoot with my kids and my nephew.
I also caught this cute little caterpillar on camera!

Genbumom Creations update:

I am still on a hiatus due to surgery but was able to add the final touches to this custom order I started back in early October.

Latest custom order made for a family via Genbumom Creations. This was a fun sign project for a child and his baby sibling to be.

Text details. The wording is a play on their last name “King.”  So cute!

I am excited to get back to work Mid- November but for now I’ll blog a little, rest a lot, and catch up on my Netflix shows.

Spooky Halloween Sign Tutorial

Why pay upwards of $15 for Halloween Décor when you can make it yourself for $6 or less?

I made mine for the cost of the craft wood (only $2 each). I already had the other items in my home. If you are crafty you probably have Mod Podge, Sharpie markers, and craft paint!



  • Craft or scrap wood
  • Horror book (think Stephen King)
  • Black Acrylic Paint
  • White Marker or White Acrylic Paint
  • Black Paint Marker or Sharpie marker (I use Sharpie Oil Based Paint Markers- they are $6 but one marker lasts forever)
  • Mod Podge Glue
  • Paint Brush
  • Coffee grounds (used and still wet)

Step 1:

Paint your craft wood black. Once dried, add some white streaks to distress along the border with your white marker or white paint. Less is best.

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Step 2:

Cut up your horror book pages, find passages with creepy words or scene descriptions.  Cut them with a curvy edge.  I cut several about 2 x 2 inches and a few smaller 1 x 1 and 1/4 x 2  inch passages.  (Do not just cut one page, or you will see too much white space on the page.) You want all of the text to run together and cover the  wood piece.

Rub your wet coffee grounds gently on your paper to give it a brown, vintage feel.  Brush off gently and pat dry flat with a paper towel. You can start step 3 even if the paper is still damp…

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Step 3:

Start gluing! Cover your wood with craft glue or Mod Podge and start layering your words. Leave the edges exposed. This does not have to be perfect! Just don’t leave any huge gaps.

Cover top with glue to seal.  Allow to dry completely.

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Step 4:

Add your spooky words or cute Halloween sayings with a black marker or paint pen! Fonts I really like are Harrington and Algerian.


Add a silhouette of a raven, black cat, or bat.

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TIP!  Always sketch out words first in pencil and use a ruler to mark straight lines. The second sign I made I did not do this and you can see that the word DARE cuts off at the bottom. Crafting fail.

Enjoy your signs! Once you have the materials handy you can make these signs for just the cost of the craft wood (or use scrap wood you find laying around your garage or barn).

Happy Haunting!

Place on a mantle or bookshelf:


Genbumom Creations: {Custom Canvas and Wood Artwork}


I am excited to announce I am going to start creating & selling custom made Canvas and Wood Artwork in the Indianapolis area!

I’m all set up to take credit and debit card payments. Pretty fancy, eh?! I’m working with an amazing graphic designer at BellStar MarketingLLC to work on a pricing sheet and it will be ready next week!

I needed a page dedicated to pictures of my artwork and designs. I would sum it up as whimsical and colorful nursery and home décor canvas art and modern Shabby-Chic style wooden signs.

I’ll be taking custom orders on a 2-3 week turn around time (local orders only). Eventually, the goal is to start an Etzy shop for out of state orders!

I will keep you posted. Here is a preview for now…

Slideshow: Wood Art for Nursery, Home, Garden, and Gifts

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Slideshow: Canvas Art for Nursery, Home, and Garden


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Below are some of the décor options for the Wood signs.

Items such as burlap, lace, buttons, flowers, jewels, and die cut wood pieces. Decorative knobs and hangers are an additional charge.

I can also add custom painted artwork (dinosaurs, monsters, owl, birds, butterflies, ladybugs, snails, forest or jungle animals, trees, vines, leaves, stars, moon, arrows, trucks, superhero symbols)… and of course CUSTOM QUOTES!

Wood can be painted in array of customer colors, or an option of 3 stain colors. Stain can be plain or with a color ‘overlay.’ See below images.




Dark Walnut


Accents for that Shabby-Chic charm:

Thank you everyone for your continued support, creative input and feedback. I’m very excited to start this journey!

Facial Care with Essential Oils

img_5840You need to use oils in your facial skincare!

This is why…

They are so much  more healing and penetrating than lotions and can actually help reduce breakouts if you use the right type.

If you are a user of essential oils, you are about to get very familiar with my favorite carrier oil: Hemp Seed oil. For facial care it’s Hemp Seed oil or bust.  I won’t use anything else on my face!

It’s non-comedogenic factor of 0. Yes, 0!   It is considered a “dry oil” so it is not greasy.  It heals breakouts, has a greenish tint that masks ruddiness, and leave skin feeling smooth. It contains 80% essential fatty acids.

“Since hemp seed oil is nearly identical to our own lipids, it is capable of penetrating our cells and lubricating the surfaces between them. It is used to nourish not only dry skin but blotches and lesions as well.”

– Learn more here: Natural

I get compliments on my skin tone all the time. I look better rested, wrinkles are diminished, and my skin clarity has greatly improved.  I use it morning and night. It functions perfectly under makeup also.


Yes, this is my eye.  Looking pretty good in the mid 30’s department…thank you oils!


I used a name brand “commonly dermatologist- recommended” face lotion for a week during a temporary bout of, I don’t know, I guess laziness and  insanity?  I broke out, had clogged pores on my forehead, and my skin looked sallow. Yuck.

It’s worth a trip to the fridge to use my Hemp Seed Oil Face Serum!  (Yes, it does need refrigerated).

Featured in the images below are the 5 oils I always use in my face serum. Sometimes I add Carrot Seed oil (it has an SPF factor for skin protection).

If you are a novice to oils or feel you cannot spend so much money, I would recommend the following combos:

  • Lavender & Tea Tree: acne prone skin
  • Frankincense and Palmarosa: oily skin
  • Lavender and Palmarosa: oily skin that is sensitive
  • Lavender and Frankincense: dry and/or mature skin


Repairing Face Serum


  • 1 oz Hemp Seed Oil
  • 5 drops Lavender
  • 5 drops Frankincense
  • 5 drops Hyssop
  • 5 drops Palmarosa
  • 5 drops Tea Tree (if you have dry skin,  reduce to 3 drops and see how you react)

Frankincense and lavender are the main staple in my face serum; lavender is moisturizing and reduces inflammation and redness.

Frankincense is extremely healing and may reduce blemishes for many skin types. (It works for my combination skin: a dab of bentonite clay and frankincense, let sit,  rinse off after 10-15 minutes, then apply a dab or frankincense after is a great zit zapper!)

This astringent quality also reduces the appearance of wrinkles,… Anti-Aging: As a Cytophylactic, Frankincense Oil promotes regeneration of healthy cells and also keeps the existing cells and tissues healthy. [1]

Hyssop, or Hyssopus officinalis, has a slightly sweet scent and can promote creativity.  It is often used for skin issues and can treat bites, bruises, and swelling. It also contains antiseptic qualities.


photo courtesy of

Palmarosa, or Cymbopogon martini,  is also known as East Indian Geranium and has restorative and regenerative effects. It has a floral-like lemon smell. If you like the smell of Lemongrass, you may enjoy diffusing Palmarosa with a few drops of Lavender. [3]

The reason I bought Palmarosa was to use during the hot summer months, as it reduces excess sebum (oil) production.  You can create a refreshing toner with unscented witch hazel and a drop of Palmarosa, Lemon, and Lavender on an organic cotton round.

It helps stimulate cellular regeneration and to re-establish the physiological balance of the skin. It can help smooth out wrinkles. It also helps to rehydrate dry skin and hair by helping balance the production of sebum. [4]

Tea Tree, or melaleuca oil can treat many skin conditions: such as cuts/abrasions, gum and teeth issues and acne. “Numerous Aboriginal communities along the east coast of Australia have a long history of using tea tree as an antiseptic for skin conditions.” [5] 

I dot Tea Tree on my skin all the time. I also dilute it in water and combine it with peppermint for a refreshing mouth wash!


Eye Serum


  • 1 oz. Hemp Seed Oil
  • 10 drops RoseHip Oil (if desired- for mature skin)
  • 5 drops Frankincense
  • 3 drops Patchouli
  • 3 drops Elemi
  • 3 drops Cypress

See how you react with 3 drops and you can work your way up to 5 drops each essential oil. Of course, never apply directly in your eye or too close to it!

Patchouli oil is one of my favorite oils in regards to scent. I wear it several times a week mixed with orange and a drop of geranium as a perfume oil (my friend gave me this recipe).

The scent is very earthy and calms me down! I always carry it in a rollerball. I do avoid wearing it before work meetings as this fragrance is not for everyone.

It can help mature skin, especially in the under eye area, in regards to wrinkling or dryness.

“Patchouli oil has long been used in traditional Asian medicine, especially in Malaysia, China, and Japan. It is used to treat skin and hair problems, such as dermatitis, eczema, acne, dry chapped skin, dandruff, and oily scalp. It also has wound healing and scar reducing properties,8 as well as aphrodisiac effects.” [6]

Cypress, or Cupressus sempervirens:  I add it for it’s circulatory and vein strengthening effects. Cypress is often used in combination with other oils to help treat spider and varicose veins.  [7]

I also use this oil in a headache blend (peppermint, eucalyptus, and lavender) that I rub on my temples. Skip this oil if you tend to develop under-eye puffiness. Here is a recipe using Cypress for a toning eye makeup remover from Sustainable Baby Steps.

Elemi, or  Canarium luzonicum is known scent-wise to resemble Frankincense but with a hint of lemon. It may help reduce scarring and acne, so it’s a perfect skin care oil. It has many other wellness benefits, so read up more on Elemi oil!

“Part of the same family as Frankincense and Myrrh, Elemi has been used traditionally to support the appearance of the skin.” [8]

BONUS TIP:  I use lavender in any mix I make. It’s moisturizing and calming. It tones down woodier scented oils, like Vetiver or Cedarwood. It masks the balsamic smell from oils like Rosemary or Elemi.

It reduces swelling and itchiness from bug bits of all types: mosquitos, chiggers, mites, etc.


Disclaimer: These statements have not been approved by the FDA. They are not intended to diagnose, prevent, or cure any disease. Always exercise caution when using essential oils. Always consult with your primary care physician prior to use.  Some oils are safe during pregnancy and some are not, please consult your medical doctor or obstetrician prior to any use of essential oils. If you are on any medications, please inform your doctor.

  • Frankincense is not recommended for use during pregnancy. [1]
  • Patchouli may not be safe for use during pregnancy [6]
  • Do not use Hyssop oil if you have a history of seizures, epilepsy or high blood pressure. Not to be used on children under 5.  [2]


  1. Accessed August 2, 2016. Health Benefits of Frankincense.
  2. Accessed August 2, 2016.  Herbal Oil: Hyssop Oil: The Sacred Herb.
  3. Callahan, Jeff, December 2, 2012. Palmarosa Essential Oil.
  4. Accessed August 1, 2016.  Palmarosa Oil.
  5. October 2013. Tea Tree: Australia’s Oldest Medicine. University of Sydney.
  6. Accessed August 9, 2016. Patchouli: The Hippie Herbal Oil.
  7. Accessed August 9, 2016. Dr. Axe’s Essential Oil Guide.
  8. Young Living Essential Oil website: