Megan O'Dea Jenkins

Wishing you smiles and laughter every day.

Holiday Wreath How-To December 8, 2013

We’ll get to the wreath in a second, first I want to show you how I turned the Thanksgiving tray into a Christmas tray!

Frame to tray Christmas

I already had most of this in my house including the paper. The candlestick holders and bowl were beautiful wedding gifts!  And the shiny holiday bulbs. . . well, I bought them for the wreath and luckily had a few left over.

Holiday tray from frame

Simple but cute, right?  Okay, now on to the fun stuff!

Sparkly wreath upgrade

Store-bought wreaths are so expensive! And I never find one where I love every single thing about it so it never feels like it’s worth the cost.  That’s why this year, I wanted to make my own wreath, and it had to be colorful and it had to be sparkly!!

Holiday wreath upgrade

I found this fantastic mess of sparkles and texture at Garden Ridge for $19.99.  What a crazy store!

Holiday Wreath Upgrade

Garden Ridge also had bulbs in all sorts of sizes, colors and textures. I chose orange, turquoise, red and green all sparkly, shiny and a little matte too. Total cost for bulbs was $10.00.

holiday wreath upgrade

First I simply placed the bulbs on the wreath to make sure my vision would work.

holiday wreath upgrade

It seemed  a little plain and needed something to tie it all together so I grabbed this ornament off the tree (thanks Mom)!  Just what it needed!

holiday wreath upgrade

Then I started with the hot glue! I think I used 3 sticks of glue!

holiday wreath upgrade

Can you see all the glue on that bulb? I didn’t even burn myself!

Holiday wreath upgrade

Oh so pretty. I used red tulle to hang the ornament in the middle.

Holiday wreath upgrade

I love how it turned out and that I was able to incorporate the colors orange and turquoise in my Christmas decor!

Holiday wreath upgrade

I tried to clean up all the glitter but I think I will be finding it for years to come.  Good thing I believe the world needs more glitter!




Repurposed Frame & Screen October 6, 2013

Filed under: decorating,Holidays,Inspiration,Omaha — meganodea @ 9:09 pm
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My creative juices are overflowing, finally!! I started and finished two projects today AND I’m blogging about them both!

Ornate gold frame

I bought this frame as a set. You may remember this sign I made for my then boyfriend and now husband!! woohoo!!


Yes, I’ve had this in my closet for over three years and it even moved to our new house with me. I knew I’d find a brilliant project to use it for!


I took the back off and pulled out the print, it’s mounted on a board so I just set them aside. . . you’ll see why in a bit.


I sanded the frame very lightly to give the paint something to stick to.


Then I started painting.


I love these Valspar samples and lately I’ve been obsessed with the color Tropical Oasis. So obsessed that when I showed my Hubs the two projects I was working on today he called me Marie. (Those of you Breaking Bad fans know how much Marie loved her purple. . . well I love turquoise!)


I’m also obsessed with the Valspar Antiquing Glaze!  It’s like adding a fun scarf to your outfit, it just ties it all together and finishes the outfit perfectly!


Remember the print and board I set aside? Yep, I wrapped it with some fun paper.


Then inserted the piece of glass I had cut at the local hardware store.  . . can you see it?


I couldn’t even wait for the glaze to dry, I had to finish it tonight because I knew it was going to be so cute!


TADAAA!!!   All of these items I had around the house.  The glass cylinder on the left is just filled with green lentils and wrapped with jute. So simple but super cute!


The frame-turned-tray turned out just how I wanted! For Christmas I will switch out the paper and the decor. . . I’m going for a turquoise, green and red theme this year, can not wait until Christmas!


I also painted up this little screen since I wanted to paint it. . . . you guessed it. . . .turquoise, Valspar Tropical Oasis to be exact!

There is a screen there, can you see it?



I’ve had this screen about three years as well so it was a bit dirty, gave it a good wipe down with a damp cloth.


Then got to painting!  It only took a couple of coats.


Eventually I’ll hang a holiday themed wreath on this screen but for now it added another layer to our mantle.  I’ve been Pinning mantles like crazy on Pinterest! Come follow me!


That sign right there was painted by Susie Harris,

one of my most favorite bloggers.  I love her work.


I’m loving today’s projects! My old house had every wall painted a color!  Now, all my walls are “Latte” so I’m using color in other ways. It’s definitely been a challenge, but I’m slowly figuring out.  Next challenge is what to do with those windows!

If you have any ideas, let me know!













Have You Been to Hitchcock? May 1, 2012

Filed under: Nature,Omaha,Photography — meganodea @ 8:12 pm
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If you haven’t been to Hitchcock Nature Center for a hike I highly recommend it!  This place  is a little piece of heaven only 30 minutes northeast of Omaha. Located in the Loess Hills, Hitchcock Nature Center offers over 10 miles of rugged trails (well, as rugged as you can get in NE/IA!) – you’ll definitely want some pretty good hiking shoes or water proof shoes out here. Here’s some snapshots from a recent hike at Hitchcock.

Can you see the mustache?

I absolutely love the green foliage against the wintery brown brush! (is that so nerdy of me or what?)

There was little snails everywhere!

This is from the top of the ridge line looking West to farmland and I-29 way back there.

It was kind of overcast the day we were out there so I tried some different editing options in Lightroom 4 to blue up the sky.  Turned out pretty good. . . at least I think so!

Party pic!

Okay, can you see the little flash of red smack dab in the middle of this shot? It’s a woodpecker, I promise!

I think this is from the look out tower looking West over Hitchcock Nature Center.

There’s Brian at the top of the 45′ lookout tower. It was pretty, can’t wait to go on a sunny day!

I hope you are enjoying posts from our hiking adventures, I promise I’ll have a post on an creative project coming up soon!




Nature at OPPD Arboretum March 29, 2012

Filed under: Inspiration,Nature,Omaha,Photography — meganodea @ 9:06 pm
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It’s a lot more fun to take nature photos with a fancy new camera so Brian and I are taking to the trails this summer.  We’re going to try to do a hike a week and so far have explored some places we haven’t ever been to in our hOmaha!  Here’s a few snapshots from our nature walk at the Omaha Public Power District Arboretum.

I liked this little greet pine tree amongst the brown/grey surroundings.  I may have punched up the color a bit, playing with the editing features in Lightroom 4.

And another beautiful green pine tree amongst the brown/grey surroundings.

I love the yellow-ochre colored rocks and ground cover against the cobalt blue-ish sky. This photo was taken by Brian and edited by me!

We also went over to check out the Grotto in Elmwood Park and I had to share the camera with Brian again. It’s so hard sharing the camera, I mean who likes to share a shiny new toy?  But he loves it and loves taking photos so I guess I’ll be nice and keep sharing!

A little reflection for you.

I’m excited to spend the summer exploring nature, might have to bring my sketchbook along.

What are you exploring this summer?




Customer Experience At It’s Finest – The Grey Plume February 15, 2012

Filed under: Omaha — meganodea @ 9:19 pm
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Brian took me to the Grey Plume for dinner on Valentine’s Day (yes, I am very very lucky). This was my second trip to this fine establishment, it’s always such an escape, it makes me feel like I’m at a fancy dinner while on vacation! I appreciate the attention to detail at the Grey Plume, from the table settings to the charcuterie plates made by a local artist to the design of their plating, every little detail is important to them.



But as we enjoyed the evening what I noticed the most was the customer service. From being able to make our reservation through Open Table, to kind, warm greeting as we entered the restaurant and a smile at each time a server came to our table, it was impeccable. But the thing that stood out the most was that everyone that worked there was so proud of the restaurant, of the food, of the chef’s, and they shared that with you. They were sincere in expressing their excitement over the wine selections the sommelier had for the night and delighted to compliment the dessert chef on his creative flower themed dessert.  Our server started the dinner and ended the dinner thanking us for spending Valentine’s Day at the Grey Plume.



The enthusiasm and pride was infectious and much appreciated. We made the right choice for dinner. I left our server a note of thanks for being so enthusiastic and wonderful, she deserved it as well as everyone at the Grey Plume. Keep it up, we need more experiences like this in Omaha!





PS You may see more posts from me about customer experience, some good, some bad, but always constructive!


Perfectable Spectacle February 13, 2012

What a title, huh?  My sister, who is so creative herself, messaged me on Facebook a week or so ago and said she’s looking for a print of glasses but couldn’t find one. Of course I said, I can make you one! Easiest project ever and it turned out just perfect. Here’s a little step by step.

I told her to send me a few photos off the inter webs of styles that she likes.  This one happened to come from Warby Parker, which my sister just purchased from, are you familiar with them? Warby Parker sells vintage inspired glasses, very good prices, and for every pair purchased, they donate a pair of glasses to one of their non-profit partners.   The other cool thing is they send you glasses to try on at home in a fancy box, then you send them all back and let them know which one you chose! Very good experience.

Anyway, I took the image into Photoshop, simplified it, sized it to final painting size  and printed it out.

I had a 9×12 canvas board in my closet so I measured it off to 8×10 as that’s the size of frame my sister had.

Got out my tub of paints even though I only needed black and white!

I wanted the white background to be warm so I mixed in a little yellow and brown paint.

You can see the difference here between the original gesso canvas board and the warmer white that I painted.

I centered the print out on the canvas and taped it down.

Next step was tracing the image using graphite paper.

Graphite paper worked pretty good!

Because the painting was so small and I had to be precise, the paint needed to be really easy to work with so I mixed it with matte medium. It just makes the paint a little thinner and not as sticky so therefore easier to work with in small spaces.

And there you go!

Not exactly precise but looks pretty good.

Kate loved it!  Easiest project ever for me!

It looks good above her desk. See that chalkboard? That was an old cabinet door, and a Christmas present from me last year!  (can you tell I upgraded my camera? Now i just need to be better about lighting, I should have turned off that desk lamp!)

Her apartment is super cute, she’s a really good decorator.  See that “Work hard and Be Nice” sign? She found that at one of our favorite stores, Voila!

This is a painting in her apartment that only took me 3 years to complete :). Well, I started it about 3 years ago as it was going to be a birthday present for her, then I got tired of it when I was 75% of the way through and it just sat on my easel in my art room for 3 years before I finally picked up my paintbrushes again and finished it up!  Merry Christmas to Kate this year!

I’m lucky to have Kate as my sister because she loves decorating with my artwork!  This is one of my favorite paintings from my art school days at Iowa State.  We had to take  a painting we like, this is a Georgia O’Keefe and paint it in a different style than the original artist. I can’t for the life of me remember what style I was trying to attempt!  But I think it turned out super cool.

Back to the glasses, what do you think? I love them and so does Kate which is all that matters!




Mirror, Oh Funky Mirror, On The Wall January 10, 2012

Filed under: decorating,Handmade Artists,Omaha,Wall Art — meganodea @ 8:19 pm
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As you know, I’m OBSESSED with funky shaped frames and that also includes mirrors.  Here’s a couple I found on the cheap, I mean really cheap, like both for less than $10.00!  Throw a little spray paint on them and their transformed!

I dug deep, to the bottom of the pile of mirrors and mirrors to find this gold gem!

There was something about her that was reminiscent of Beauty & The Beast, which just happens to be my favorite Disney movie!

But that textured oval thing is so strange isn’t it? I wonder what the person who designed this mirror meant for it to be?

Nothing a little sparkly brooch and some silver spray paint couldn’t fix though.

I added a bright pink ribbon, this one just happens to be from the LOFT bags. . . I always save those ribbons from LOFT shopping bags because they are the most gorgeous colors, I have a big old jar full!

Didn’t she turn out so beautiful? I think it’s a mirror you would totally see in Beauty and The Beast, or Snow White or one of those Disney princess movies!

I also found this beast!

It’s a little too gothic looking for my taste but I knew some bright spray paint could fix that!

I went bright cobalt blue!

And flipped it upside down. I think that softened it up a bit.

GORGEOUS!  Well, maybe not gorgeous, but fun, right?

Don’t be afraid to buy something a little ugly and throw a fun color of spray paint on it.  You’ll probably create a masterpiece and love it!