Tag Archives: decor

Window Shades and Sleep Hygiene

With longer days and Daylight Savings Time comes more sunlight – and with it, the challenge of getting enough quality sleep for my child with an “early” bedtime.  One key factor is darkness.  I have used sleep masks with great success, but my family refuses to try it.

What to do?  Well, I wasn’t ready to try taping foil or newspaper over my windows as some people have (how unattractive would THAT be here in the ‘burbs?!) and I wanted to be able to open the blinds/windows occasionally, so I went to my local Home Depot in search of window treatment solutions.  I was on the hunt for some form of room-darkening shades that would not bankrupt me – or require replacing the 2″ blinds already in place.

et voila!

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Temporary pleated paper shades: hung with adhesive strip and held open with small clips

I found just what I needed – a temporary pleated shade that fit against the window behind the existing blinds.  And the price was right – less than $5 each.  We’re in business!

They have been in our windows for two nights and we all slept better immediately.  Our bedroom windows face East, but there is still significant outdoor ambient light that comes in through the blinds at night – even when cloudy or moonless.

My son was up early the very next morning – and I normally have to NAG him to get out of bed at the last possible minute!  I didn’t expect such dramatic results so soon.  I am amazed.

Why didn’t I try this sooner?!  (And why do I end up asking myself this question so often?  Oy.)
I am definitely hanging these shades in the baby’s West-facing window this Fall!

shades

Iceland in the Making

We’ve had two days of glorious winter weather with temps above freezing and beautiful sunshine.  It was more than welcome after more than a week of gloom and subzero cold.

Sledding at Staring Lake Hill

Sledding yesterday at Staring Lake Hill

But this is Minnesota…  [As in: “Don’t like the weather?  Wait five minutes and it’ll change.”]

Here’s what’s coming tonight:

… WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 6 PM CST SUNDAY…


* MAIN IMPACT: BLOWING SNOW WITH REDUCED VISIBILITIES IN OPEN AREAS MAKING TRAVEL DIFFICULT. OCCASIONAL WHITEOUT CONDITIONS ARE POSSIBLE.

* OTHER IMPACTS: WIND CHILL VALUES OF 20 TO 35 DEGREES BELOW ZERO WILL ALSO POSE A HAZARD.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

BLOWING SNOW WITH STRONG WINDS AND POOR VISIBILITIES ARE LIKELY. USE CAUTION WHEN TRAVELING… ESPECIALLY IN OPEN AREAS.

IF YOU VENTURE OUTDOORS… MAKE SURE YOU WEAR A HAT AND GLOVES.

… BLIZZARD CONDITIONS SPREADING SOUTHWARD ACROSS WEST CENTRAL MINNESOTA THIS EVENING ALONG WITH DANGEROUS WIND CHILLS OVERNIGHT…

A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IS IN EFFECT FOR CENTRAL AND EASTERN MINNESOTA WHERE NORTHWEST WINDS OF 25 TO 30 MPH… WITH GUSTS NEAR 40 MPH WILL CAUSE BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW. IN ADDITION… TEMPERATURES WILL FALL OVERNIGHT WITH WIND CHILLS 25 TO 35 BELOW ZERO BY SUNDAY MORNING.

THE COMBINATION OF THESE WEATHER ELEMENTS WILL MAKE TRAVEL EXTREMELY DANGEROUS FOR MOTORISTS… ESPECIALLY IF STRANDED.

But we’ve learned to make the best of it, so I’m taking advantage and making some ice lanterns and shooters for New Year’s Eve next week.

Hmm...this isn’t as easy as I thought it would be – Yikes!  Those balloons are slippery when wet and one popped off the faucet and sprayed ALL OVER the bathroom!  Gaah!  

After wrestling with these punching bags a bit more, I got them filled, clipped and out into the porch.  If that doesn’t do it, I’ll put them outside tomorrow.  With -20F windchill temps I feared they may freeze solid instead of only part-way by morning of I put them out tonight.  The idea is to create a hollow sphere that functions as a candle lamp outside.

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We plan to set them up out front and light them New Year’s Eve in remembrance of Hubby’s Grandma Toyne who passed away on New Year’s Eve a few years ago.  She was quite the character and we miss her lots.  [The ice shooters are just for fun!]

I wonder if they’ll turn out like these?

ice lantern kit

Not likely…

*UPDATE*

ice lanterns 2

It worked!

ice lanterns 3

Ready for Candles!

New Year’s Eve: candles lit for Grandma Toyne.
About 8pm, the candles extinguished themselves…or did they?

ice lanterns 01-31-2013

The candles extinguished themselves about 8pm, the approximate time Grandma passed away a few years ago.

Making Spirits Bright at the Arboretum

A few images from our MN Landscape Arboretum to give you
decorating ideas from Nature and get you in the Holiday Spirit!

We visited Thanksgiving weekend, before all the snow arrived.
Now the outdoor displays are buried under the white stuff.

Go figure…it’s MinneSNOWta!

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