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Friday, August 31, 2012

Entryway Update and a few fun projects!

     I am so excited to get this project finished that the paints still wet but I'm showing you anyways! Let me preface this all by saying that we have a very small, poorly thought out entry way. There are 3 doors that open in that small square, and if someones coming in the front while dad's bringing in the burgers from the grill~~~~well, its not pretty! Storage is also an issue here.

     While I can't do much about the doors, I can add a smidge of storage. Another challenge with this area is the lack of privacy. Our front door has no curtain to cover the window at night. We don't live on a busy street but especially when Jeff is gone at night and I'm home with the kids I'd rather not get the creeps that someone could be watching me!

     Here's where we started:

Thursday, August 30, 2012

A few fall changes.....even though its not fall yet!

  OK, so I know its not fall yet.....but......I just couldn't help myself. Something about the kids getting ready to go back to school makes me ready to break out the fall decor.

     I started small, just the hutch and mantel for now. I've got major project plans for this weekend which I can't wait to show you! Not that the hutch switcharoo isn't exciting, I'm just loving a few other things more that I can't quite yet share. {How's that for a teaser!}

     Before I show you the pics, let me preface by saying that my sweet hubby has been waiting for years for me to somehow incorporate his deer rack into the scheme. He had it mounted on some tacky fake wood plaque with emerald green velvet covering the skull cap. Kind of yucky! So, lately I've been seeing lots of racks out there in blogland {of the animal kind! ;)} and knew there had to be a way to tastefully include this.

     In order to make it work I had to take it off the plaque, but had to use something to hide the skull, {again yuck}. The bird does the trick! Here's the final outcome!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Family Devotions

     If you've got a good thing going, this post isn't for you! This one if for well intentioned families like ours who intend to do family devotions daily but with the craziness of life, it rarely happens. Jeff and I are big time in this mode, as the summer winds down, of re-evaluating the lazy rut we've gotten ourselves into and cracking the whip as we prepare for the structure of the new fall schedule.

     I love a schedule! It helps to keep us all on track when 57 things must happen each day. More importantly I love the Word of God for this very reason. It helps to keep our lives anchored and on track in a world full of despair, selfishness, and neglect.

     We have been reminded again of how important God's word is in our daily lives, its "our daily bread", what we need for survival, and yet we give our children food, clothing and warm beds but often they go to bed at night without hearing about what they need most.

     My husband reads to the kids before bed each night and often incorporates passages of scripture. We wanted to add to this at supper. Before, we would try to read from the Bible but often it wasn't handy, someone had lessons or practice to get too or neighbor kids were at the door waiting to play. We needed something quick and too the point.

    Here's what we came up with:

Sunday, August 26, 2012

1 Year Old!

     Well my little old blog is one year old! My how time really flies when you're having fun! God has been so good to me and my family, we are so blessed! I love blogging because it pushes you to be more creative, think outside the box and with it I've gotten so much more done than I would have otherwise!

     Rather than waxing eloquent about this past year I thought I would show you some of my favorite projects from the year. I won't say too much about them but if you want to see more just check on the link.

Number #1 has to be our kitchen re-do:

For  #2  I picked this pillow I made for Christmas time based on a Pottery Barn pillow. It was one of my most popular projects last year based on traffic generated:

#3  is my favorite wreath of all time! I love this springy wreath {I've actually kept it up all summer too} because it is so bright and colorful and lots of fun.

My #4 pick is the boys bathroom. Let me tell you, boys need their own spaces!!! {or moms will go crazy!} This bathroom has a few fun touches that are totally boy but mom loves it as well.
{This next image is one of my most pinned on Pinterest~ hows that for a fun fact!}

I could go on and on but I will stop with #5. I chose this project because sometimes some of the simpler projects can mean the most in the end. I loved this piece of wood we found on the beach in Grand Haven and was excited to be able to turn it into something that was useful.

    Thank you so much for a wonderful first year of blogging! I couldn't have done it without you all pushing and encouraging me along the way!!!

I'm sharing this here:
Its Overflowing
i should be mopping the floor
Between naps on the porch
Tatertots and Jello
Too Much Time

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

A Hodgepodge!

     What is a hodgepodge you ask? Well, in our house hodgepodge is a lunch favorite. It usually means just a bunch of things thrown together like: crackers, cheese stick, fruit, pepperoni's or whatever I have lounging in the fridge that needs to be eaten.

     This post is not about eating however, but it is just a mishmash of things that I want to share!

     First off, this past weekend my husband and I went to NYC. He had to go for work and I tagged along~my first trip there ever! What a city! I've never walked so much in my life! There is so much to see and do there, and I was very impressed with all of the architecture. Here are a few examples. See if you recognize any of these places:

OK so this isn't technically architecture but I thought is was a cool pic anyways! ;)
     NYC was a great place to visit but I will take my quiet little cul-de-sac any day!

     I came home last night to the exciting news that Knock Off Decor was featuring my latest project! Wahoo!!! I am so thrilled and thankful. Head on over there and check it out!

     So now I'm in transition mode. After being away from my kiddos all weekend {not to mention one little one of mine who missed us so much he sobbed often throughout the weekend ~ sorry grandma! I guess that means we need to toughen him up by going away more often! ;)}, I wanted to spend the day doing something special with the kids so we went to the fair. I honestly thought 'after traipsing all over NYC, a little county fair should be no big deal'. You forget about how tiring travel can be and let me tell you I am beat! Definitely going to bed early tonight!!! 


      Aren't they cute! I've got to soak em up cuz school starts in two weeks! 

Friday, August 17, 2012

Defined Dining {aka dining room drama}

     One of my favorite sources of inspiration are catalogs, specifically Pottery Barn and Ballard Designs. As soon as they come in the mail I find a quiet corner and curl up with the catalog and savor each page. There are so many ideas you can glean {especially if you don't have the money to buy!}. I dog ear each copy and save them for future project ideas.
     I have been looking for ideas of what to do in my dining room to add some drama or definition behind my dining room table. I love the mirror and sconces but they just get lost in the sea of oatmeal behind them. All along my idea was to add some molding to create a box shape and then maybe paint inside the box. However, this cheapy builder grade house has no molding anywhere {ok except maybe the base boards if you count them} and I was worried that adding the molding might look out of place. That's where my thought process was when the most recent Ballard Design catalog came.

     As I was going through it, I came across this little nugget of inspiration:

     So purple's not my thing but the idea of painting a box with little cut out corners definitely is! Here's the before: (Sorry for the dark pic!)

My other issue with this wall is that it frames the staircases going up and down and on the other side of this is the hutch. We are in major need of some balance!

     I started by using a level and a pencil to create my box shape. Of course I filled in all the nasty nail holes and wiped down the wall.

     I started out by using a dinner plate to create my circle but they didn't look quite even, even though I marked on my plate where to line it up with my tape. I decided instead to measure 4 1/2" up and 6" over on each corner so that they were even but I still used my dinner plate to achieve the circular shape.

     It took two coats of paint and only about 45 minutes worth of work to accomplish this. I did have to free hand paint the circular cut out but it was easier than I expected it to be {meaning I made no major mistakes}.
Here's the final outcome! You will note the suns reflection and shadows {I'm not the most patient photographer~and I had to make the most of the 30 minute episode of Doc McStuffins to divert my kiddos! ;)}

     We have very high ceilings so adding shape helps to define the dining space {much like an area rug would~but not at my house cuz I have 4 kids!}. It also helps make the space feel a big cozier and provides the much needed balance to the hutch on the other side of the stairwells.

     {If you're really observant you will notice that my chandelier does not line up with the table. It used too and then we had the benches made so that we could push the table closer to the wall and create more space. We just haven't gotten to moving it yet~its on the list, I promise!}
     This would also be a great idea to create a headboard for a bed or fill in with chalkboard paint for a kids area or in the kitchen. So pour over those design catalogs and pay attention to all of the details, you never know what might inspire you!

I'm sharing this project here:

At the Picket Fence
French Country Cottage
Tatertots and Jello
The DIY Dreamer
Not Just a Housewife
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia
DIY by Design
Too Much Time
Its Overflowing
i should be mopping the floor
Between naps on the porch

Monday, August 13, 2012

A Beautiful Summer Wedding

     For the first time since September 11, 2001, I flew. Now I haven't been avoiding the whole flying thing, I've just been so busy having babies, and who wants to fly with a baby?! The perfect opportunity for my maiden voyage {since 9/11} was my beautiful cousins wedding out in Boston. It only took 15 minutes after my plane left for my husband to say to the kids, "Mom's never leaving us again!", which made the trip totally worth it! :)

     My cousin Naomi had so many cute details in her wedding that I wanted to share some of them with you.
First off, the flowers were gorgeous!

     Here's my mom and I just before the ceremony:

     Her programs were a thoughtful addition considering the heat/humidity/and lack of air conditioning. They were fans and let me tell you they were worth their weight in gold on that hot sticky day! {It was seriously the hottest wedding I've ever been too ~ and Naomi, you can take that any way you want! ;)}

Another cute detail were these vintage hankies that she had out in the lobby.

     Her "theme" if you will was birch. As in birch branches. They held special significance for her as her now hubby had carved their initials in birch at the location he proposed to her. This was incorporated throughout the country club where there reception took place. Here are a few examples:

     I am all about using texture in my decorating as a way of making your home feel homey and I love how the use of texture in something large scale like a wedding adding warmth as well. I'm even crazy about the contrast between the rustic birch and the elegant flowers. Oh so yummy!

    Here's the board that she made that had all of the place card's for the table seating:

     Now don't mind the reflection of my mother's dress in the picture frame, but isn't that a cute pic? Naomi also made all of her favors which was the most delicious caramel popcorn! I may or may not have grabbed a few extra! ;)

     Here they used larger birch branches in these arrangements that were also on the platform during the ceremony.

     It was a beautiful wedding for a beautiful couple.  I'm so wishing I was getting married again so I could use some of these ideas! {Just kidding honey!}

Congratulations Keith and Naomi! Love you!

I'm sharing this post here:

Between Naps on the Porch
Skip to my Lou
i should be mopping the floor
Not just a housewife
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia
Coastal Charm
DIY by Design
The Shabby Creek Cottage
At the Picket Fence
Tatertots and Jello
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