Jeweled Flats

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This post has nothing to do with our house but rather it’s the tale of how one of my favorite necklaces found a new meaning in life.

I bought this necklace at Ann Taylor on major clearance shortly after Everly was born.  I loved it and was actually excited to wear it when I returned to work after maternity leave…sounds silly I know…but, hey, it’s the small things.

I wore the necklace once and then a jewel fell out.  Let me do the math for you…it’s been nearly THREE YEARS.  I lived in a place of denial regarding the necklace.  For a while I decided I would just repair it…after all I had been the buyer for an online bridal store in college and dealt with jewelry  like this daily (random, right?? I did their buying and their accounting).  So, I figured it wouldn’t be that hard to find the extra stone and paint it to match.   Riiiggggghhhhtttttt. I got right around to that as you can tell.

Then I went through a phase of thinking I could conceal it’s loss.

Y’all.  I would wear the necklace and then wear a shirt with a collar or a blazer and tell myself as long as it stayed hidden no one would notice.  As I’m typing this I’m laughing at myself because I don’t even think I actually paid $10 for the necklace.  For some reason, I’m just attached to it.

I’d like to be able to say this is the only time I’ve attached myself to a jeweled item.  I once had a pair of jeweled flats that I wore until they were FALLING APART. Things went way past unprofessional.  So I decided I would buy a new pair of plain flats, pry the jewels off the old flats and then glue them on the new shoes.

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That works beautifully for a while and then one day one side of the jewels fell off.  I obviously had a breakdown somewhere in my process of attaching those.  Anyways…

Yesterday in the closet I looked at my necklace and I looked at my shoes and all of a sudden I realized I could make myself a new pair of shoes.  I split everything apart using tin snips.

Maybe I’ve been watching too much Doc McStuffins or maybe all the broken toys in Toy Story finally got to me….but I decided to give these couple things one last go round before I finally have to part with them.

My favorite part ended up being the little embellishment I put on the backs of the shoes.

I feel pretty great about it 🙂  Have you ever done anything like this? Or do you have some broken or messed up things you refuse to part with because you “might” fix it one day?   Tell me I’m not alone here!

DIY Frosted Coffee

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Have you had the new-ish Chick-Fil-A frosted coffee? It was supposed to be limited time only but they announced last week it’s going to be a permanent addition to the menu. This is both a) the best news ever and b) enabling me. Enabling me to frequently consume a glorified milkshake while pretending it’s a cup of coffee and also to spend money at a fast food restaurant way more frequently than is fiscally responsible to do.

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So, upon their announcement I decided to try a DIY version at home. While it’s still really the same ingredients I can at least control the sugar and flavoring that is likely added to their version. Here is the nutrition facts per their website. 38 grams of sugar in a small is sorta killin’ my vibe.

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 So, I got a little pint of regular old vanilla ice cream. I used about 3 small scoops of this. A serving of this is 1/2 a cup which is almost exactly what I used. 160 calories and 18 grams of sugar. While we should just call this what it is, a dessert, at least it’s better right? Right.

I added the ice cream to 6oz of cold brew coffee I made a couple days ago and blended for like 3 total seconds using our bullet. Don’t overdue this or you’ll lose the milkshake consistency.

 I topped it off with a little whip cream…lets be honest…just to fill out the glass for the picture. It doesn’t need it but if whipped cream is your thing then go for it!

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 Consume in the sun to cool off with an economical and somewhat healthier version of your beloved frosted coffee!

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 Side note: we cold brew our coffee with the Primula glass system from Amazon and love it. You can cold brew with a filter and a mason jar really but this comes with a reusable filter and just having everything made to go together makes it easier. [[cold brewing just means you let coffee grounds soak in cold water for 24-48 hours–nothing special]]. Cold brew also has significantly less acid which is overall healthier for you and helps prevent the dreaded coffee breath.  What you make will also last for weeks in the fridge vs. that one hot cup you keep microwaving all day and pretending like it still tastes fine.

And I use half decaf grounds and half regular (or all decaf) while pregnant for a lower caffeine treat. My friend Kelly and I branded this decaf iced coffee “Ice Ice, Baby”. Logo and all, it’s probably something I should actually brand instead of putting on the internet for someone else to take to Shark Tank but hey, gotta pick what I spend my time doing wisely…like DIYing my favorite fast food beverages…

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Show and Tell: coworker edition

So I’m back to work this week which means I have few minutes to spare until I get into my new routine! However it’s pouring snow here tonight and knowing I have a day in my pajamas tomorrow means I can stay up a few minutes late and chat with my favorite internet people.

I want to share some really cool DIY projects tonight that are not our own. The husband of this DIY duo is a coworker of mine and he and his sweet wife have done some amazing upgrades to their home! Seriously, Ryan and Katy need their own blog!

The first is a garage door makeover. I absolutely love things like this because there are SO MANY plain white garage doors out there! Such a minimal investment can completely upgrade the look of the whole front of your home.

Here is the before:

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And here is the after!!

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Does it not look like the whole door was replaced for one with windows? That is trim and paint!!

Take a closer look.

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GENIUS. Here is the breakdown of the costs for this upgrade:
$18 for carriage door pieces from Home Depot
$40 for trim for the faux windows
$20 for glossy black paint
White paint (already had on hand)
Total: $78

Now, I’m not a garage door salesman but I know this is an upgrade that is totally worth it! What a difference that makes in the curb appeal. I looked around the internet for kits and all I was able to find was a pack of black window stickers for $100… which wouldn’t even be 3D like this is with the trim.

Another project this couple took on was a firepit. Ryan had been looking at the firepits sold at the big box home stores but felt they weren’t substantial enough for the price. Are you ready? This is cool.

Old washer drum found at a junk appliance store (The Olde Homestead if you’re from around here).

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Wire brush it off (cute dog optional)

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Add electrical coupling pipe for legs and paint with high heat paint:

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Enjoy!

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Total spent on this project:
Washer drum $26.50
Pipe for legs $7
Screws $3
High heat paint $4
Total $40.50

I hope you enjoyed reading about these projects! I love seeing the creative ideas our friends come up with!

things.things.things.

I have what I would consider major projects to be blogging about. However, I cannot seem to make myself sit down and commit to finishing painting said projects and until then they cannot be photographed. [[update: I have painted so we are so much closer]]

I miss my blog though so I thought I would just write up a short [[edit: this got long!!]] post about some things we love. I’ve formed a bad habit of internet window shopping during nighttime feedings….and then window shopping turned into real shopping 🙂

So sawdust is just a THING in our house so this year I put these drink toppers into Blake’s stocking. This way when he is in the basement he can cover his drinks up and not take a big gulp of saw dust. They run you about $8. Worth it.

drink savers

We also felt like a lot of times Everly would be hanging out in the living room and we would need to use the nail gun for a quick second. I kept having to carry her out of the room so we found some baby ear protection. I’m a little crazy about protecting hearing. Truly men (or women!) you should be wearing protection even when you mow your lawns. It will make a difference when you’re older!

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This pillow I think makes a wonderful gift for new parents! It’s $35 and is a special and fun way to document things. We have this in Everly’s room now and I think it’s just so cute.

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Gnocci. It’s still a starch but it’s wayyy easier than cooking pasta. It boils in about 3 minutes. We’ve started serving it mixed with a meat, veggies, and a pasta sauce. We love it and truly makes a quick meal. This also seems to keep as leftovers better than pasta for us. It’s perfect for that new mom brain that just explodes at the idea of cooking pasta. A lot can go wrong with pasta….you can spill the noodles everywhere trying to get them into the pot (one hand makes everything so much harder) and you can forget to set a timer all together…no timer needed here. They just float. And float quickly. Time is of the essence when a baby is in arm.

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Reusable K Cups –We love anything we can reuse …we also love buying the whole bean coffee and grinding our own the morning we are having it. We have had the same 4 cups for at least 3 years now and they are holding up just fine! We rinse them out after use and run them through the dishwasher maybe once a week.

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This isn’t really something you buy but is just something that made our lives easier. After Everly came things got a little blurry for a while and we were constantly RE-feeding the dogs because we thought they hadn’t been fed yet! Seriously….Finley has gained 10lbs…. one night Blake started inventing a little thing we could use to track when they had been fed. We fashioned this together using a magnetic picture frame from the fridge, a piece of paper, and just a basic magnet. We move the magnet each time we feed them so the other person knows the last time they were fed.

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Heated mouse pad. I don’t even feel like this needs an explanation it’s just one of those things you should immediately purchase if you work anywhere close to an office. It was like $6…probably because it’s shaped like a giant fish and a more professional one would cost more. But it’s just powered by the USB and I can tell you first hand it gets TOASTY!

mouse pad

Travel heated blanket : My mom received this as a gift for Christmas and I think it’s pretty genius!! This would make a great gift for a lot of people in my opinion. I feel like Blake and I always think the car is two different temperatures 🙂 no spouse ever has to freeze again.

heated blanket

Other things I have been up to include:

I’ve put a dresser in the dining room. I LOVE it! So. Much. Storage.

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I’ve been inspired by this post to do this type of thing in our dining room. It’s rather charming I think.

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I found this sweet little paint can at the Lobby of Hobbies for something like $3. I’m not really a collector of small nicknaks but this reminded me of our pregnancy announcement so I wanted to add it to the nursery.

paint jar

Lets see… I’m not sure I ever shared this wasp/hornet (not sure which) nest I picked up at an antique store in the mountains. About everyone I know told me it was really creepy but I love it hanging in our office! I’m truly amazed because it really is a very natural work of art. Mom thinks I should gold leaf it. I might…

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I’m working on adding a tab to the top of our blog about blogs/websites which I love to frequent! I’ve found some great blogs perusing this feature on other blogs that I would love to share. Now that I have a camera I am also going to be slowly updating the house tour pictures with some current pictures. It’s easy to forget just how far some areas of the house have come!

Before I go, I’ll leave you with some more random information 🙂 Another new middle of the night pass time has been surfing Instagram for interior design /blogger/neat thing accounts. Here are some of my FAVORITES if you’re also into Instagram and use it for more than the occasional selfie 🙂 Maybe in addition to the aforementioned proposed blog updates I’ll figure out how to share my own instagram feed on here…

instagram 1

instagram 2

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As for our projects…here is a hint at the biggest one we’ve done in a while. This is BEFORE.

laundry before

See you soon!

Things that change your life

Hi Friends! It’s been a while. I have to report that not much in the way of projects has gone on around here.

We have had one very major life event though……

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We invested in a Roomba! Are you underwhelmed? Don’t be.

This sort of happened on a whim although I guess not really because we had been in discussions about hiring someone to help keep the house clean anyway.

Sometimes just the smallest amount of dust can overwhelm me. It’s not the dust I can see that does it… it’s knowing that the dust I do see is the tip of a big invisible iceberg and thinking about dusting the iceberg really just makes me want to run outside screaming. Our last place did not make me feel this way. I guess it was smaller but it was also complete. When everything was put away it was done and I felt very satisfied. Living in a fixer upper has definitely impacted the cleaning realm because there is no feeling of complete satisfaction. In fact, if you clean something that is “under construction” (the term I like to use for something that is not entirely the way I want it to be… aka 85% of the house) you are left feeling blah about it because then you get reminded about what you meant to be doing to that particular area and if you are just ADD enough you will start that and then forget to ever finish cleaning.

I realized how first world problems this post is seeming right now. Sometimes you just have to be dramatic.

So anyways, back to the purchase. My friend Kelly told me one day she was working from home while her dog played in the back yard and her Roomba vacuumed the house for her. WHATTTTT. I immediately had to get on board. I did a little research (10 minutes worth) and decided I wanted the model made for pet hair then I told Blake that the Easter Bunny was SO thoughtful because he was bringing me a Roomba.

easter bunny

If you read this blog long enough you’ll start to notice that I like to pin a lot of purchases on holiday characters. If I ever do have the unfortunate mishap of losing a tooth you better believe the tooth fairy is coming to town!

(Also, if you google Roomba and are astounded at the price of them I realize it may seem conflicting as I am otherwise a ridiculously frugal person but it should be noted there is a busy season policy. We do not have time to spend money January-April and therefore the Easter Bunny likes to be generous each Spring) ….also I thought about how many times I’ve said to myself “I would pay someone $50 to suck up all the dust and dog hair in this house” and it was more than 8 times (in the past week) so therefore my valuation of said Roomba was deemed reasonable and appropriate.

WE LOVE IT. I mean we LOVE it. I think it works remarkably well and even if I do nothing all day and the Roomba runs I feel a sense of accomplishment. I also like that it goes under the furniture unlike a vacuum. It also makes me feel good that if we have someone coming over last minute we can start it to run and do other tasks while it’s getting that part done. We had some people ask us how it did on carpet and we think it did well but we also weren’t using a Dyson or anything before. The Roomba is a huge improvement over what was happening before….which was nothing. It motivates you to keep clutter off the floor so that it can get around which means more shoes back in the closet and less of me keeping two pairs in every room of the house just in case I need to go somewhere. (Really it just motivates your husband to remind you to put your shoes back in that sweet shoe china cabinet he built for you)

I think I might be the only one who laughs at this type of thing but I just crack up every time I see a video about a cat riding a Roomba. Hilarious.

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This is the link to a funny one. I can see Lola sitting on the Roomba doing this to Finley while we are at work all day.

Anywayyyyssss, we are sort of getting back into the groove of things and I’ve been itching to make a giant to do list. I read Young House Love…if you don’t you should because they are cute. They keep a giant running to do list for each section of their house which they fondly call Listy McListerson (or some variation thereof). It has everything from tiny to dos to big renovations but it’s just a place they can go to check stuff off and remember their original goals. I hope to have that be my next post for here.

Lastly, if you watch The Voice, Delvin Choice is from Greenville and goes to our church so if you want to be cool and vote for him that would be great! 🙂 It’s on tonight so click here if you want to!

Renewal

We have something so special and near and dear to our hearts to share today. This furniture makeover by our friend Lindsey has so much meaning. Lindsey lost her boyfriend, and our friend, Damon last September to suicide. A word that seems almost impossible to type. It’s been hard to fathom. Difficult to understand why a loving God would let that happen. Hard to watch someone experience the worst day of their life. The silver lining is that with each day that goes by we get to see life and spirit renewed. We have seen the definition of family as her parents and sister surrounded her with unwavering love. We have covered their family in prayer and have relentlessly asked God to please wrap his hands around them…The bible tells us God can hold all the oceans of the world in the creases of his hands so I know he has them cradled in there somewhere.

The first time I met Lindsey’s parents was at Damon’s funeral. They are the kind of parents a person would pray to belong to. The kind that when I met I let out a sigh of relief that Lindsey would be ok.

I’m not sure why but I constantly tell myself that working with your hands is healthy. It’s what we need to do. It was nearly the only suggestion I had for Lindsey during this time…for situations like this there just aren’t words 99.9% of the time. It’s a space where the friends feel helpless of not knowing what to do or say and the survivor is left helpless…like you’re on two sides of a cliff with no bridge in between. When you can’t talk, or think, or even feel like you can breathe my thinking was just that maybe if you just keep your hands going you could get to the next minute.

Lindsey was left with some pieces of Damon’s furniture and instead of replacing them she and her family renewed them. The furniture is unrecognizable and I will, without bias, say this is one of my favorite makeovers.

Here is the dresser and nightstand before:

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They added pieces of wood to cover the old pattern:

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And here is the after! I love the drawer pulls–it’s so modern.

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This makeover brought tears to my eyes. It’s such a symbol to me that you can’t go back in time. You can’t take things back. You can’t erase memories… but you can change the future. You can renew. You can give hope to lost things. Letting go of that furniture wasn’t going to erase the memory, or take away the pain. It’s a testimony to how Lindsey has chosen to live her life. Yes, I recognize that this is a part of my life but I’m going to own it and control it and breathe my life back into this situation. It may seem like a stretch to look at old furniture this way but we have to stretch. Stretching the mind and heart is what hope and faith are made of.

Lindsey has handled this storm with more grace and strength than I would have dreamed a person could have. From the beginning she has wanted to spread awareness in a hope that others could be spared from tragedy. No human can control anything other than themselves… that’s a tough pill to swallow when our lives are so intertwined with other people and things. Lindsey has been a constant reminder that you will not be able to change your circumstances but you can change yourself within them.

If you or anyone you know has ever felt like things have become too heavy and you don’t know where to turn please reach out to someone. If you feel like you can’t reach out to those you know then call one of the numbers listed on this site. If you are a survivor of suicide and think a support group would help you here is the link to find your local chapter. This site links to things you can do to support or reach out to others for connection!

Show and Tell

Tonight we are having show and tell. We want to do this from time to time and share some projects other people are doing!

My cousin Will and his cute/sweet/sohappytohaveherinthefam fiance Brittney are busy making the condo they will move into next July their home! She shared a before and after on her facebook tonight and I want to share it here!

They spotted this coffee table in a Goodwill and took it home for a little makeover.

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The coffee table itself isn’t that bad. It’s not for me but I could see it working in some houses. Glass top coffee tables are something I have beef with… why would you actually need to see what’s under there (?) because let me tell you it is going to be one of three things 1) dusty carpet 2) a dusty rug 3) or, if there is a shelf below, a collection of junk. Sure, this will start off all staged up with your pretty coffee table books but let’s be honest… In a month or two that’s going to turn into a recycling bin for ESPN mags and newspapers magnified by a thick layer of glass. Like i said..some houses…I know there are people out there with no dogs, kids, and the discipline to not actually sweep all the dust life gives us under there. kudos to you!

Brittney and Will just painted the table white (I personally love how you can see a little brown coming through on the wood work…it makes it look original). They modge podged fabric under the glass and voila!

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You now have a custom coffee table for a fraction of the price. This table has tons of surface area, it’s sturdy, and it has storage.

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Adding these baskets is genius. Everyone needs a basket for tv remotes, wii remotes, ipads, magazines, books, blankets, etc. I love a contained mess. LOVE IT.

This is such a good example of how far a little paint and fabric can go on a piece you may not love. It’s also a great example of how you can find some great things at secondhand stores. Some people would love that table as it was and it would be 5 times the cost in a furniture store!

Thanks Brittney and Will for sharing!