Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Family 'Memo' Board

Now that Mark is home during the day, he's been doing the grocery shopping. Usually that means he calls me while I'm at work once he's already AT the grocery store and asks me what we need. I do most of the cooking and meal planning, so I generally know best what we need. However, I don't usually remember EVERYTHING we need when he calls and needs an answer ASAP. We always end up forgetting several items.

So he's been saying we need a whiteboard for a while. It would be a handy place to jot down those grocery items we need as we all become aware of them. I just didn't want a plain white 'eyesore' stuck on the fridge.

Now there are chalkboards ALL over blogland... I know. Trust me, I know. I've drooled over gorgeous chalk 'walls', jars or canisters with chalkboard 'labels', etc. But... we don't like chalkboards. We don't like the sound of chalk on the boards, we don't like the dust... it's out of the question.

I did see, though, where several bloggers have made dry-erase calendars using this same method and that's where the inspiration started. I don't need a calendar (we already have one hanging elsewhere in the kitchen we use for jotting down schedules and appointments). I DO get very tired of "What's for dinner?" as soon as I walk in the door from work, though... and Mark and I DO often miss each other (he's out the door to class as soon as I walk in from work) so I thought we could have a 'reminders' section as well.

Here's what I came up with:

I couldn't take a 'head on' picture as our window is opposite this door and there was too much glare and reflection.

I started out with a Goodwill find. It was $6.99 but I stopped by on "30% off any 1 non-clothing item" day so got it for even less. All I really cared about was the size, the glass, and a decent frame.

I didn't take a whole lot of 'in process' shots, but here's what I did.
  • Take apart picture - clean glass and give frame a nice fresh coat of gloss paint
  • Measure area and plan out grids
  • Print text 'reverse' on computer
  • Using a large ruler, draw out boxes on BACK of glass using permament marker *stray lines clean up easy - scrape with a toothpick*
  • Tape reverse text on FRONT of glass and trace on the back using permanent marker so it will show through the front oriented correctly
  • Draw lines to write on if desired
  • Cover cardboard sized to fit (I got lucky at there was a piece of foamcore board already behind the picture) with fabric or paper of your choice
  • Mount glass with permanent marker writing on the INSIDE, then covered board into frame

So this way the permanent marker text is on the inside and can not be erased (unless I ever want to redo it and then I can clean it off with glass cleaner). We can then use dry erase markers on the front to fill in everything as needed.

I don't have a lot of wall space in the kitchen, so I mounted it with Command picture hanging strips to my pantry door.

After a few hours, I realized there was NO WAY the dry erase markers were going to stay in the area of the board, so I covered a small box (leftover Conversation Hearts box from Valentine's)with coordinating fabric (ModPodge) and hot-glued it to the lower right of the board to hold the markers:

Haha - that picture is from last week... right before St. Patrick's Day. See Wednesday's dinner? Tried to be a little traditional and get the kids to try something new... we had corned beef with potatoes, carrots and cabbage, irish soda bread, and a grasshopper cake for dessert.

It's so not perfect... some of the text came out darker than other areas, the writing lines aren't all straight, but it will definitely work for now. This could easily be done using vinyl for the letters and lines, but I don't have a lovely Cricut and don't see one in my future. I had to use what I have available.

The best part? Waking up to this in the morning (I usually leave in the AM before they're awake, so Paige added this last night before she went to bed)

That was taken last night. The kids are 'on top' of updating the board and erase a dinner after we've eaten. So all we have now is tonight and the next few nights meals planned. Mark will go grocery shopping agian on Wednesday or Thursday and we'll plan out the next week then.

Thanks for looking! Hope this inspires someone to tweak an idea they've seen so it WORKS for them!

I've linked this to:

DIY Day @ A Soft Place to Land
Talented Tuesday @ My Frugal Family
Toot Your Horn Tuesday @ A Silly Little Sparrow
Get Your Craft On @ Today's Creative Blog
Feature Yourself Friday @ Fingerprints on the Fridge
I'm a Createive Cat @ Poppies at Play
Hodgepodge Friday @ It's a Hodgepodge Life
Spring has Sprung @ It's FUN to Craft
What I Made This Week @ Simply Designing
Craft Concontion @ That's So Cuegly