Big girl room reveal!

Here we are a week from the due date of our second baby and we’ve FINALLY moved our first into her new digs!  The following went down in this room: ceiling repair, lighting change, new paint.  Other than those things we were really just shuffling furniture around…it’s hard to believe the room all came together with only a handful of purchases!


Here we were testing paint colors and clearing the room out…pre ceiling fix, pre ceiling fan swap, mid curtain trial run!


Then we moved it all in!


We just shared about the china cabinet turned armoire in this post.  Beside it we have a laundry basket that actually holds stuffed animals and blankets (it makes for a quick clean up!).  The chair is from TJ Maxx years ago and the booksellers table is Ballard Designs which was previously in her nursery (we got it second hand and I tried to find a similar link but it’s sold!).  Curtains are pillowfort for Target. Rug is by At Home. Peg board letters are from Hobby Lobby…those are no longer sold and we got ours when they were something like 90% off!! These could (fairly easily) be made with a pegboard panel from Lowe’s (no more than $5), some paint, and a jig saw.


Toddler bed was second hand, nightstand is vintage Stanley furniture, mirror was a thrift store find, quilt rack was my grandmothers.  Chandelier was a thrift store find spray painted white.  Crib was actually mine from 1986.  It’s a drop rail crib which is not something that could even be sold these days but we feel fine about it! In fact, once Everly starts climbing out being able to lower the rail will make me feel safer.  Art is woodland doodles by me in some clearance Hobby Lobby frames (gotta love that 90% off aisle!).  Everything in the room is hung a little higher than usual just to keep it out of reach of tiny hands.  I’ve read once they move to a toddler bed you have to treat the whole room as if it’s the crib so they can’t get hurt if they decide to play in the middle of the night…


A burp cloth made by The Plum Poppy I just couldn’t stand to pack away yet!


Wreath was a thrift store find but it’s actually from Target. (Holy cow when I went to find that link I realized it was $20!! I paid $3) Bear artwork is also Pillowfort for Target.


So there you have it! One more room of the house checked off the list!  (And one leaky roof FINALLY stopped!)



Big girl room for a little girl

As we’ve discussed here before, we are moving Everly to a new room to make room for the new baby to be in the nursery we already have set up that is a few steps from our bedroom.  When I first started scheming for Everly’s “big girl” room I fell in love with some of the girly woodland decor and it just so happened Target put out a few designs in their Pillowfort collection we couldn’t say no to!  I created a mood board below of what we’re going to have going on in this room.  I linked a chandelier that sort of looks like ours but for that price tag…I could have bought 27 of mine (preloved brass chandelier left to die at habitat for humanity of course!)

mood board finalchandelier, pillow sham, curtains, area rug, bear pillow, lamp, crib, paint color

Here is what we started with:

before of Es room

This happened to be our master bedroom for the first year+ that we lived here before we relocated ourselves.  Then it became our guest room…then a ceiling leak started that ran wild for too long because we a) couldn’t find the source and b) closed the door and decided to give it to God for a while.   Well, we’re back in action! Over the past month we’ve managed to whip this room back into shape and of course I decided I needed to change the paint color in the final hour.  I used to think painting was fun….I used to paint ALL THE THINGS and last weekend I painted this room (and ceiling) and it was AWFUL. what was I ever thinking before? I decided it’s because I used to pair my painting with a nice glass of red wine and maybe because now I’ve been reduced to painting with water it’s no longer fun or inspiring? …the unfortunate thing is once you’ve started, you’ve got to be all in you know? I made it though and the reward is a much cleaner and brighter feeling room!  Another executive final hour decision I made was to take the ceiling fan out and trade it with the chandelier in our living room.  It felt like a practical decision that happened to jive with my design (it should be noted practicality and the things I request around here rarely collide).  I painted the chandelier a glossy white.  I really thought about going for a fun color and then realized when we go to sell our house I don’t want to be pulling the fixture back down to put yet another coat of paint on that appeals to the masses. #safe #vanilla



I’ll leave pictures off here until we’re done even though our “big girl” is settling in quite nicely and the room is already filled with her crib and a toddler bed her babies are tucked into and nap on multiple times a day…big sister is really getting the hang of things!   We still have lots of artwork to put on the walls and we still have to tackle THE BEAST that is this china cabinet being turned armoire!  YALL. Can we talk about painting this? Hold me.

before cabinet

Getting Creative to save Cents

When you have a structure that’s made of concrete and steel it can be tricky to figure out how to attach, well… really anything. We knew we wanted to do the string lights but it took some creativity to figure out how to attach 2 points of contact on the yard side of the patio without being a pro welder. And attach an additional 3 contact points on the house side without touching the house (don’t want the wind slamming glass bulbs into the house….and I guess…lightning rod?) or having the bulbs drag the shingles.

light plan

This whole thing actually started the same day our patio was poured. Blake and I were having ourselves a celebratory wine picnic on the patio that night and we noticed some random wires sticking out the side of the house (not your average house). I don’t know if it was the wine or what but we remembered there was also a switch inside the house we never figured out what went to. Without saying a word we looked at each other and parted ways….Blake to get the voltage meter and me to the switch. “On the count of 3!”   aaannnndddd…..we had electricity running to the patio this whole time and didn’t know. What a LUCKY surprise! Blake extended the wires up through some conduit and attached an outdoor outlet to the house to plug our lights into.  Anyways, back to the DIY how to.

We went on a couple (what we call) scouting missions to Lowes looking for materials and pricing the project out of hanging the lights. Our phones are so full of different hardware and their various prices we could almost run an independent Lowes website. If you’ve ever wondered what the photocloud of someone renovating a house looks like…it’s this:


Anyways, Blake devised the following plan:

We would attach 8ft. poles metal conduit poles to our existing rails using hose clamps. The hose clamps were rated for the specific weight and pull we thought we would have and we used 3 on each pole for extra security. For the middle portion of the house side we actually cabled them into the side of the house just using a really basic clip (again, high weight rated).   If I had it my way they would have hung below the window but we couldn’t let them drag the shingles.

On each pole Blake used a clip to attach the lights to another longer piece of metal we simply dropped down into the pole. We didn’t secure it at all but gravity and the pull to the sides keep it in place.

So the total cost of lighting this whole shebang was $180.94 which I consider a steal to have taken care of all the lighting for our patio.

The only thing we wish we had done was use a stronger metal pole. Ours have bent pretty seriously and it’s just because we used the cheapest materials (however, still rust proof). The stronger material we’ll probably upgrade to one day cost $14.50 each. The poles we have wouldn’t break they just let the lights swag a little….which, who doesn’t like a little swag on their patio??

Speaking of cheap materials (ya’ll, paving a patio and adding a hottub will leave you approximately 5 cents in the bank to finish said patio).   We HAD to add a gate for obvious reasons. We still don’t have a railing on the stairs but at least we have a gate, right? Right.


Blake attached a wooden frame to the existing steel railing like so:

He built the frame of the gate itself like any other gate kit would have you do. We wanted the gate to have the same modern feel as the whole structure so we decided to keep that flow. Blake drilled out placeholders for rods to be placed in.  We didn’t have it in the budget to buy stainless steel for this project and we also didn’t have time to wait. We actually used PVC pipe and sprayed it with metallic spray paint to mimic the silver of the other railing. Now, up close can you tell something is different? Yes. But from far away we have a darn good fake if I do say so myself. Especially when the sun hits it all (see photo above)…it’s pretty much all blinding anyway.


The latch system we purchased is one of those self-closing ones because with young kids you just can’t take the chance of someone forgetting to latch the gate back…so it’s spring loaded.

It’s our plan to stain that frame the same color we opt for on the wooden accent (trex board) we’ll be adding to the all the rest of the handrail. This should really help the whole thing look less like a prison and look a little softer/still modern.

Progress my friends, progress.

We still need to:

  • Add railing to the stairs
  • Fix the surface of the stairs
  • Add trex accent to the handrail of all railing
  • Figure out some privacy screens for the sides
  • Replace guest bedroom window with a French door for two points of access (and one closer to the bathroom)
  • Need to talk about some awnings
  • The whole underside of the structure needs to be sanded and painted (UGHHHH)

That list was daunting to even type. Might be a while before we are working on all this again! The inside of the house is calling 🙂

Smooth again.

We left off here in sort of a day dream state about the patio.  I wanted to catch you up to speed because things didn’t go as planned…

We rented a dumpster for a week back in July and tore up the top level of concrete by hand (literally using a hammer…the air chisel was too much power).

It was painful. SO HOT. and there were blisters everywhere.  I don’t know if Blake would agree but I did think it was slightly better than hanging drywall (aka the worlds largest marriage test.)

So, anyways, we finished this tedious chore in a weeks time and then called in a recommended concrete specialist (Evolution Concrete).  They basically told us it was completely unnecessary to do what we had just done because the best option was going to be to add 3 inches of concrete to what was there and just start fresh (as opposed to pouring just a new top layer).  We had no choice at that point but to be thankful for the forced workout and move ahead.


These guys were AWESOME! They came, they saw, they concreted…err conquered!  Even the method of how they kept the concrete from spilling over the edges was fascinating.

We opted for a polished, smooth finish and for about a week I thought I may rub my face on the concrete every morning to just celebrate what I wasn’t having to see out the kitchen window anymore!


It’s hard to see the original condition of the structure from move in day but I did a comparison…hey look, we replaced a wheel barrow that took 10 months to move with a baby!  And the tree has really grown! The branches were actually hanging over the patio pre concrete pour but we cut them back to keep the leaves out of the wet concrete.


We’re settling back into our patio a little at a time using the furniture we have but have some larger plans for phases 2, 3, 5, 43….  The hot tub was a reward to ourselves for accomplishing a financial goal (and made possible by the savings we had using the concrete company we did!).  I wasn’t into the idea at first but now I can totally understand why it’s a necessity for a house renovation (goodbye sore muscles!)


Never mind that area rug hanging over the balcony…it was a casualty of a leaky roof that I’m still in denial about.

I’ll have to post about the way we hung the lights….I swear I’m married to an engineer who lies like a dog to me about his day job 🙂

Main hallway update

One of the first big projects we did in the house was freshening up our long hallway on the main floor. The hallway runs through the center of the house and pretty much connects everything. When we moved in there was only one pendant light at the end of the hall and things were just too dark.

We hung pictures on the wall and by we I mean Blake. See how high they were hung? Because it was plaster I didn’t get a redo on that for months. Then we revamped the whole space but the last time we shared the walls were bare again.



Not anymore! We have about covered the walls!









We also painted the door to the basement black. I love black doors! They look so clean and regal to me.


As I mentioned in the office post we also replaced the office door with a French door. Now even if it’s open it feels light throughout the hallway.


This hallway has been on a serious journey and it’s so fun to look back and remember how it was when we first moved in!


The upstairs hallway makeover

So I’ve been trying to get this blog back up to par and I’ve realized I pretty much need to start over room by room and catch everyone up to speed.

Housekeeping items: I’ve added a blogs I love tab along the top if you’re interested in meeting some new people! I’ve added a link on the right where you can go to follow our Numbers and Nails pinterest board. I’ve also linked up our Instagram feed so you can follow along in real time.

I wanted to start my update of the house by sharing the upstairs hallway/railing progress. I’m mostly starting here because I could locate all the pictures easily 🙂

So here was the hallway when we bought the house:


It felt pretty haunted to me…

And this railing. While I can appreciate the old feel it was so, so dangerous!

before 2

For scale, Finley (70lbs) could have walked through it and it barely came up past Blake’s knee caps.


You might remember in this post we found this abandoned outdoor railing at an antique place down the road.


Now this stuff had probably sat outside for a year…and was ROTTING and we aren’t sure if snakes played on it. All we knew is that we wanted to make the upstairs safer and we didn’t have a ton of money to do it with so we took a chance on this stuff. I think we paid $25 (…maybe $35) for everything.

We reused the original 4×4 posts because they were sturdy and went through the floor. However, we had to make them taller. Here is how Blake managed to blend our posts together. We also cut off all the rotting pieces and managed to piece everything together to make 1 set of new-ish railing.





Here we are after a couple coats of primer. In this picture you can also see we hadn’t yet started the upstairs master renovation. You can see the old railing was left in place where the future bedroom wall would be going.


Here is that same view once the wall came out.


And for fun this is what me almost having a heart attack looks like. Blake was confident the 1 million nails we put into our new railing were enough to hold him up 🙂


Next we decided to paint the hallway a really light neutral color. It actually looks white now that it is all painted but here you can see the color against the actual white walls and it’s very different! We love how it turned out. It gave the space that clean feeling we had been searching for since we moved in.


We both felt that painting the top of the rail black would give it a more polished look. See how it looks compared to just white railing on the right? Bleh. Also, this is a serious testament to what caulk and white paint can hide.



We also added a black handrail going down the stairs …you know…to bring the house up to code… 🙂

before and after 2

Here is what our upstairs hallway is looking like these days!




Another big item we did up here was add the same track lighting we used in our long dark hallway makeover. Before there was just a bare bulb exposed in the middle of the room. We installed these on a dimmer switch and they can be turned off from the top and bottom of the stairs which is a huge convenience!

Before and afters for dramatic, blog worthy, pin worthy effect

before and after

I’m not finished up here. I want to do a painted floor out in this space. Like a painted on rug or some type of design. Search for those things and tell me you don’t start drooling…. For now, we are keeping the carpeted stairs but I told Blake my goal is to have them replaced with wooden treads by the end of the year.

For safety, we’re installing a gate at the top and have the half door at the bottom to keep little one from falling.

All in all we are really proud of what this space has become!

If this hallway wasn’t enough you can keep on reading here about the downstairs hallway!!

new year new lessons

Ahhh the new year. Last time we left off the tide was going out on our miscarriage and coming in on our new home office. That whole situation made me realize several things.

1) I know A LOT of people who have had a miscarriage….like I might know more people who have than haven’t. That’s a fact that only those who have lost a baby will understand doesn’t make it easier…but makes it….something…something different. You feel a bit welcomed to a sorority. It just makes you feel better…in a weird way. So, I just feel like you who read this are the sweetest people ever and thank you again. 🙂

2) My husband might actually be the nicest person ever….? Y’all. Y’ALL. I wouldn’t say I’m a crazy person. I’m pretty level emotionally and I don’t go on crazy shopping trips and leave the bank account dry. I do however, fixate. I nest. I maybe don’t think rationally 100% of the time. So when a few weeks ago I told my husband that I need to buy a gallon of black paint for our home office he DIDN’T EVEN FLINCH. Or blink…or do anything…and I know what you’re thinking… “oh honey he just wasn’t listening…” no, you guys, I said it again. Then I opened the paint and splashed it up on the ceiling and he just sat there watching me. You might be thinking….”that’s not that weird…so what your husband doesn’t care about décor…it might be weird if he did?” No, I have proof that my husband completely and totally understood my mind and my heart at the time and he was just letting me do my thing. What man is going to help you paint the ceiling of a room without moving a thing out of it??? Looking back at this photograph makes me feel crazy. It also makes me know he must have mustered a lot of self-control (or perhaps it was fear??) to just stay quiet and let me go because trust me….hahaha there’s no way he would let me do this any other time.

photo 4

I know my husband…and I know this made him feel crazy because he’s totally one of those “just so” types of people. I think he just knew I needed to do what I needed to do and I so appreciate it. He’s the best. And for the record….I’ve completely cleaned that room now ha!

3. When a doctor says “rest”….he actually means physically. I knew I had some time coming up off of work and I thought oh that’ll be perfect I can “rest”….during that time off I painted the whole room/ceiling …almost all by hand…not even a roller…yes I was after distraction. So I logged a lot of hours arched up on a ladder. When my back felt it may actually break into a million pieces I complained to my mother (of course what else is there to do…) She said “your body cannot tell the difference between work work and fun work”. This may seem dim but I have never thought of it that way. So for 2014…in addition to practicing patience I’m also going to practice the art of rest. In a business that 7 days a week during busy season you are expected to be working at least a little I’m going to try my hardest to get everything done by the 6th and rest (actually rest) on the 7th…as God intended for humans to do.

In addition to the above this year my resolutions include flossing, drinking water, and at least going to the gym we pay for at least once a week…it’s a long story how I got into that mess in the first place. Anyways,

We are still working on filling out the office space but here are a couple of teaser pictures.

photo 2


It’s so perfect to me. I just sit in there and stare at the ceiling.

office 2

In other news I turned 27 last month so naturally I was delivered cheesecake and coffee in bed (See #2 above)


And I saw Santa so that was pretty magical.

photo 5