Beach Paradise

Beach Paradise Blog

Beach signs

Welcome!!!  The forecast in Crown Point is snow and a low of 28. Not exactly ideal. Why not steal away to paradise?? Okay, sign me up. I love the tropics. I swear I am part mermaid. My nickname as a child was fish… No, I am not kidding.

But, living in Indiana well, no ocean near by causes a problem for this saltwater lover. But that doesn’t stop my creative mind bringing the tropics to my dwelling OR heart.  Now I can’t really plant palm trees in the front yard, but adding shutters, window boxes and lots of green foliage would definitely be a good place to start.

Beach homes
Let’s bring in some color!! Teal, coral, blue and orange. How do we add these pops of color to our home?

Outside, you can add some multi-colored seating, cushions and most definitely a hammock. Here are some tips for arranging an amazing outdoor patio/paradise according to Meg Braff of Coastal Living April 2016.

Patio layout

  1. Use a darker color on the bottom cushion for hiding dirt and stains. Pop lighter colors and print with throw pillows which are easily removed when storms come up. Try to repeat these colors through out your outdoor oasis.
  2. Add a few deep seated chairs for comfort and a cozy place to read the Just Carina Blog (shameless plug) or have a glass of wine with friends. I recommend a tasty Sangria.
  3. Don’t forget to add table tops for a place to put down your beverage, wireless speaker or your electronic device. Switch it up between wood, plastic or metal tables.
  4.  To make things even for cozier, throw in an outdoor rug that matches your color costal theme.

*I would add to this more plants like ferns or even better a planter full of mosquito repellent plants. Having some outdoor shells with citronella candela would be perfect!

Moving inside your humble abode, try adding a few costal signs around your home. For example, a welcome sign, or a coffee sign, maybe a bathroom sign and of course the “It’s Five O’clock Somewhere” sign, all made with distressed wood and costal colors.

Beach Signs 2

Next, whether it’s inside or out of your Paradise Cove, adding sea creatures will not only reminds you of warmer days, but give the feel of the warm sand and water between your toes.
Star Fish

A little warning, only a few sea friends allowed! You don’t want to be out numbered if King Triton comes to the door or the appearance of a crazy cat lady turned Little Mermaid. Keep that secret cave in the movie!


Another texture to add would definitely be rattan or wicker. Nothing says beach like an awesome chaise lounge!!

This could be used outside during tanning months, then brought in for indoor tanning (when the sun is too far south to keep temps above the 70’s).

So I leave you for now with this image. I can’t wait to go walking on the beach, in the sand during a beautiful sunset.

Beach stroll

Just Carina

Spring is Here!!!

Soooo super excited!  It is getting warmer here in Indiana and it’s just about time for me to go outside and get my hands dirty!  We bought a new house that needs a TON of TLC, so I have lots to do.

My thumb is turning green as I type!  Here is what I planted SO FAR.  Can wait for warmer weather so I can build my window boxes and shutters.


As you can see I planted some Cilantro, Oregano, Garlic Chives (amazing, my fav), Thyme Green Onion.


My little parsley plant is taking off.  I am thinking of making a little indoor herb garden out of mason jars and a pallet.  Since I started cooking a lot more, having fresh herbs on hand will be a major plus!


Never tried broccoli so hopefully this will be a successful crop.  lol…  as you may have noticed, I also started morning glory, poppy and cosmos.


A few more seedlings.  I had pepper and garlic chives in my garden in Colorado.  I LOVED IT!  I would just pick my lunch.  Yum!!



Just Carina




Awesome Dresser Makeover

My lovely daughter wanted a beach theme for you home.  So, I put my thinking hat on and spent a few hours in hobby lobby.  I noted that this dresser had a ton of pulls and handles on it.  I would prefer to keep this under budget because that is why we are actually re-doing furniture, correct??

So, I purchased the cute draw pulls at the top and chalk painted them white.  Then I purchased cheaper metal handles and wrapped them in rope.  Next I purchased nautical rope from Michaels and made my own handles!  Here I am testing it out to see if it would even work…

Notice I wrapped tape around the end of the rope so that I can thread it easier.  VERY EASY!

I then filled the holes on my old dresser with caulking and sanded it down.

Chalk painted with Old White Anne Sloan paint and Provence.  After two coats of paint, I buffed on clear wax.  Anchored to the wall and here it is!!


Turned out perfect!!  Let me know what you think….


Just Carina

Kitchen Table

Hi peeps!!  I am super excited about this one.  I found an old oak table (with a leaf) at a re-sale store here in Crown Point for $10!  SCORE (cue the music).

Of course I forgot to take a before photo, so I searched the web to see if i couldn’t find a similar one.  Here is what I came up with…

Oak Table

Not pretty I know.  The chairs were not included in my find, but that’s okay.  I had my hands full with the table and the leaf (which were very heavy).  I noticed that it was solid wood with the exception of the sides.  The finish was starting to peel off and bubble up.  I used my awesome Dewalt Obital Sander with a 60 grit sandpaper and completely sanded.  Normally, I don’t sand, but this baby needed a facelift!

I also purchased some wood appliqués  from Michaels for the sides, painted the bottom white using Anne Sloan Chalk Paint and the top a light grey again from Anne Sloan ( mixed white with some black Anne Sloan paint until I got the light grey color).

Kitchen Table After 1

I like the lighter grey paint and I sanded down the top, but I wasn’t in love.  I turned to my consultant, my daughter, for a second opinion.  She recommended a darker grey.  This time, I ditched Anne Sloan paint (honestly didn’t want to experiment with the more expensive paint).  Thanks for Pinterest and my “consultant” I located a way to make your own chalk paint using latex paint and Plaster of Paris.  I followed the directions and made a darker grey (I had a random sample of dark grey paint from a prior craft project).  pinloveAfter I mixed the paint I put another coat on and instantly noticed a few things.  First, it took a little longer to dry.  I let it completely dry over night.  Second, it was VERY durable!  The little bit of sanding I did on the top took some effort.  Maybe a little too much and will definitely be testing this out on other projects I have coming up.

But, here is my final product on it’s way to it’s new home.  I LOVE how it turned out!

Let me know if you have any questions and please, let me know what you think!!!  Have a great crafting day!

Just Carina

Christmas Bows how I ❤️ thee!!

Wow, can you believe Christmas is right around the corner?  How did that happen!!!  Well unlike other years in the past, I am almost done with ALL my Christmas shopping!  Yep!  Super proud of myself.  However, I can not say the same about my Christmas decorating.  It’s an on-going affair.

I did get my window boxes done, put some white lights on some shrubs, as well as our first real live Christmas tree fully decorated.  I have a few other projects that still need to be completed.  First, making Christmas bows (I switch them out almost every year).  Nope!  Not a piggy bank braker (I know mom that isn’t a word but it sounded cute).  So please put down the piggy bank back on the shelf and put the hammer away.

I simply shop for Christmas ribbon that is on sale (thanks for all the apps notifying me every time anything goes on sale in a 60 mile radius). Kidding of course, no not really.  I purchased that cheese Deluxe E-Z Bow Maker thing a few years ago and away I went!  Here is this years themed bows.

This one will be going on my mailbox next to the cute snowman I got for 50% off (again with the app from Michaels, or was it JoAnn??)

On to the next project!  Christmas tree burlap wrapped outdoor thing.  I will upload more photos when it stops raining.

Not ready for this!!


Okay so as I sit here in my warm bed waiting for more snow to come as forecasted (see if it happens), I just want to say…  I AM NOT READY for this mid west winter!!!  Whaaaa.  It gets so cold and it always seems like there is no fall or summer or spring.  Just winter.

Oh wait…

I could do that!  At least my beer isn’t getting warm.

Enjoy the season and have fun in the snow!


Little change

So, two of my boys moved to Colorado to go to school and my oldest daughter is barley at home also due to school and work (older kids known as the “bigs”).  As well as my youngest daughter and son are now in school all day (known as the “littles”), which leaves me with a lot more time in my day.

With that, I have decided with my spare time I will start recycling!!!  We always did a little recycling before, but we never split up the household daily trash.

Okay, so…  with that being said, I made one of my trash cans regular trash and the other one recycling.  How on Earth am I going to not only explain but teach my 5 yr old son what to recycle and which trash can to use?!?

Placing creative thinking cap on my cut wedge haircut head, I started brainstorming ideas.  I didn’t want to write on the trash cans with sharpie pen which would make me commit to a lifestyle change the “littles” might not be ready for.  Yet I wanted to do something that expressed my creativity.

Drum roll please…


Okay explanation:  About a year ago I purchased chalkboard paper (purchased at Michaels for $9.99)  It looks like a roll of wrapping paper.  I simply put down a large cereal bowl (had to clean some fruit loops out of the bowl first – story of my life), drew a circle around the bowl and cut it out, twice.  Stuck the circle with Elmers Adhesive Spray (this stuff is extremely sticky and is hard to get off other surfaces – learned that the hard way).  Wrote the labels and dots with a chalkboard pen (miracle invention right there folks).  I purchased the at Target for $5.99.

I know it’s not one of my hardest creations, but hey.  I didn’t find it on Pinterest, I came up with it all by my lonesome.  Besides, every little change makes a difference!


Well there it is folks!!