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

Back door storage makeover

Our back door leads straight out onto our patio area and when we first moved into this house, in an effort to just get things hung on the walls, we put two hooks by the back door.  At the time they held dog leashes.  That didn’t make any sense because we walked the dogs out the front door, not on the patio.  Probably a year into living there, in a new effort to make each space make sense, we ditched the dog leashes and put our most used coats on the hooks by the back door.  We all know how it goes right? You hang a hook somewhere with the intention of having one jacket on it and the dang thing ends up being like a rabbit.  It breeds coats! Suddenly you have 5 coats hanging there you didn’t even know you had and the one you always want to wear is on the bottom of the stack.  EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. Am I right?

Another thing that always irked me about this is that said hooks were right above our trash can.  Something about our coats hanging over the trashcan had me constantly wondering if I smelled like garbage when I wore my coat.

Once we redid the patio and were spending more and more time out there the same questions constantly started to crop up.  “where is the sunscreen?” “where is the bug spray?” “have you seen the lighter?” “WHERE did we get all these bubbles and why are they constantly on the coffee bar????”   This prompted me to long for a shelf right at the back door to hold all of these everyday items.


FINALLY. A space that makes sense and is working for our family!  I found this old, pre loved, shelf and felt it fit the bill enough for what I was after.

before shelf

The only thing I didn’t love was the hokey look of the thing.  When I got it I didn’t have time to give it a makeover so I hung it up as is…a trial run for our needs I suppose.   I realized a couple of things in my test drive.  1) the pegs were too large for key rings 2) occasionally things would fall off the shelf 3) I was never going to get used to that watering can floral scene.

I went shopping in our basement for some supplies and found enough white paint, some gold spray paint, and a wooden dowel all on hand.   Hobby Lobby was running the 50% off hooks and knobs sale so I grabbed 4 of gold hooks to match my theme for less than $5 total.


I probably put about 4 coats of paint on the whole thing to get good coverage.  I think I put a couple coats on a day just as I walked by.  I removed the old pegs with some pliers (the struggle was REAL) and filled in the holes with spackling we had on hand…making sure to place my new hooks below so they would be in solid wood.  I sprayed the wooden dowel with my gold paint and lodged it into the shelf securing it with some glue.



I love the clean look of the finished product! Now each of our most commonly used patio items has a designated spot!

close up

with door

New roof line

If you’ve been around here for long you know we’ve been chasing a water leak for the better part of two years.  Two leaks actually (but the same kind), one in the kitchen and one in the guest room.  The one in the kitchen seemed to have tapered off but the one in the guest room only got worse.  As we’re turning the guest room into a room for one of our girls (and eventually both) we had to officially repair the ceiling and pray we had stopped the leak.  We gave plaster repair the old college try (Lord have mercy).  After one afternoon attempt we threw in the towel for a while which ended up being a blessing.  It allowed it to rain enough for us to see water damage happening to the brand new plaster.  Leak not fixed.  Such a bummer.  We called more people out to look things over and everyone had the same reaction….”we have no idea”.

Well, we had SOME idea.  We knew it had something to do with these two reverse dormers on the back of the house.


Each water damage spot was right below the reverse dormers.  We decided to have the roofing on those redone (we had repaired the window trim as much as we thought was physically possible so didn’t see how any water was seeping in around them).  Blake agreed to do the demo of the project for a little break on the cost of labor.

Upon ripping things apart he quickly realized all the rotten wood underneath the windows.

We had a carpenter friend make a late night house call (angels walk among us) and he told us what he would do if it was his house.  The plan was the same plan Blake and I had tossed around several times but tried not to commit to because it was the most extensive and expensive plan.  We needed to get rid of the reverse dormers and do one solid roof line across the back of the house.

new roof line

This would require taking out perfectly good windows and replacing them with windows that were a bit shorter…like the one on our bathroom (back middle of the house). We still have double full size windows on the sides of the rooms so I don’t feel like we are losing that valuable of window real estate.  This just means we can have more flexibility about furniture on that wall in those rooms!

This project now is going to include a little more demo, redoing siding, resetting windows, taking out and putting back in drywall on the inside, and roofing the newly framed out joists.  It’s just pretty much NOT what my very nesty self wants to be getting into at 33 weeks pregnant.  And I talk like I’M getting into it.  It’s really the husband who is taking the brunt of this redo… But hey, we had central air installed the week before Everly was born so I won’t act like it’s out of the norm for us:)

On the eve of project-stop-the-leaks-2016 here is where we are:


Can’t wait to share the rest of this process once we get it all put back together! For some peeks along the way be sure to follow us on instagram and facebook! Oh and I’ve dropped this tip before here but it’s worth mentioning again, if you’re local, Ken’s Inc. on Wade Hampton is a supply haven! We got the exact windows we were needing for about $100 less than what the big box store was going to charge us (a piece!!).


and then there were three.

Holy behind on blogging.

Our sweet Everly Blake arrived December 2nd. Her delivery was smooth and easy (post epidural) and a blessing for our family. We live about 40 minutes from our hospital and I went into labor right during morning rush hour. There was a brief moment of time where I thought if we got stopped at another redlight I would get out of the car and kill the next person who decided to block the intersection. Obviously I’m typing here and I’m not in jail so we finally made it!


Everly has truly been the best gift we could ever ask for. She’s two weeks old today and time is flying just like I thought it would. Blake and I are working hard to soak in all the details and treasure all the moments while we can. I was gifted a legitimate camera for my birthday and so I took some pictures of her nursery for the camera’s maiden voyage! This post will just be tons of pictures because typing with one hand takes FOR-EV-ER.

Here is the view when you walk in










Her crib is borrowed and the Picasso lithograph was gifted to us by my parents. I’ve always loved the Alexander Calder mobiles so I wanted something similar for Everly instead of the stuffed animal mobiles from the baby stores. We found hers at Wonderland Studios for just $25 and I think it goes perfectly with the artwork. I hope she learns to love the arts!


We shared before the changing table and it has been amazing. We have changed every single diaper here with the exception of one I had to change in the backseat of the car. I got peed on. Welcome to motherhood.



The table has been so convienient and we love having everything in one spot. A couple things to note: we secured the lamp to that shelf so clumsy hands don’t knock it off onto baby. We also have the switch on a remote (however it stays on 24/7) but that way we aren’t having our hands bump it around trying to turn it off or on. The little mirror we hung is pretty perfect. I’m not sure if she can see that far yet but she does like to look over there during changes.


the raskog cart from IKEA has also been great!


I love this picture because it shows that in all of this new we have tried to maintain some old with that doorknob!


We shared how we outfitted the closet space in this post but i wanted to show an update. I bought her a little laundry basket and when we got it home i realized it didnt fit in the closet like I thought it would. I took the doors off the bottom cabinet to make it work.



My aunt handmade this quilt we have hung on the wall!


Everly’s aunt made her the blanket you see in the bottom right corner of that picture. Also shown here in one of her newborn pictures taken by my Dad.


If we keep rotating around the room we get to her hutch (full picture here) which is full of her special things.






Speaking of special things, we have also kept all of her cards. Some we filled the frame shown below with and others are in her very first gift bag (thanks Katrina!)




Here is a wide angle shot of this side of the room. It looks SO busy in this picture but I don’t think it looks that crazy in person…


I love the view out her window! It seems to go forever and the right time of day you can see the mountains in the distance. She can also keep an eye on her puppy dogs in the backyard 🙂


I also wanted to share one more of her newborn pictures. In one of my favorite gifts Santa gave me!


We still look around the room almost daily and say to eachother “remember what this used to be?” and we feel so very proud. From the worst room in the house to the most special it’s amazing what can happen in two short years (and a few months worth of Blake’s hard work)!

photo 2

clean wide angle 4


One of the MAJOR things that happened upstairs which isn’t shown in blog worthy pictures is the fact that the week before Everly was born we had central air installed in the upstairs. It’s now the same temperature in each room, all the time. We can’t explain what a huge, HUGE difference that has made for us…and for Everly! 🙂

Just Say No

I spent a large amount of time as a kid attending D.A.R.E. presentations. Just “say no” they would tell us.


Over the past 26 (almost 27) years I have drawn my own conclusions on what to say no to. Much like this collective chart I have 6 things I generally need to say no to.


1. Watching infomercials
2. Visiting animal shelters “just to look”
3. Running
4. Scary movies
5. Picking out clothes the night before
6. Day by day CHALLENGES.

I think we’ve learned, together, these are not for me. I will list below the remaining 15 favorite things about our house and then we will move on to bigger and better things…like how I have made the upstairs hallway look like a place people might actually want to visit!

1. The street—I love our street name. West Arlington Avenue. It makes me feel like I could be a cast member on Scandal.
2. The view out the back window—when the leaves fall I can see the mountains.
3. How the vent in the bathroom is perfectly positioned so that it makes my side of the rug warm
4. The entry alcove and window
5. Having laundry in the kitchen—I thought I would hate this but I actually love it. I see it and therefore I do it….sometimes.
6. Pantry doors—ever since I painted these puppies black in this post I love them
7. the holly tree outside—at Christmas I can keep fresh decorations for free!
8. the Christmas trees in the drive—There are two Christmas trees growing between our house and our neighbors house…I want to put lights on them this year!
9. Lighting—there seem to be light sockets where I want them to be in this house. The other day I looked up and there was a light in a closet I had never realized before.
10. Never thought I would say this….and may retract it when we have kids…but the closed concept. I feel cozy when I can sort of close myself off into a room.
11. closet built ins—sooo nice to have open shelving. I already don’t like to fold but this is one less step than folding AND opening the drawer/stuffing in.
12. arches—I think it gives the house character
13. Halloween on our street—300+ kiddos looking to us for candy! We’re excited that Halloween can be a fun experience for our own kids some day
14. Grass in the front yard—true green is totally rocking out and our grass is actually starting to look like we aren’t embarrassed anymore
15. Window in the door in the kitchen –It’s the kind that have the blinds built in between the glass and you can open, close, raise or lower them… yes, dog proof and lets in so much light when I want it to.

So there is that! Now let’s remember the upstairs when we moved in. It was frightening. I remember hating the pictures of it online because it looked haunted to me. It wasn’t inviting, cozy, functional…really just the beginning of a horror movie.

before 3

It’s not AS bad here with the light on….

before 2

You might remember (I know it’s been a WHILE) but we tore out the railing here and started replacing it with this stuff we found outside of an old antique store.

Well, here is the upstairs NOW!


We are still working on the floor so that is to come but can we talk about how amazing it is to have railing that is actually up to code!?! We paid $35 for the new railing and had all the paint on hand. Funny story…we donated the old railing and walked into Habitat the other day to find it priced for a modest



photo 1

photo 2

Anyways, I’ve even decorated it with some garland and ribbon.


I love how clean the upstairs feels now. I like to stand in the corner of the bedroom and look into the bathroom we put in, into the hallway that’s now bright and warm, and into the diva closet. That’s my happy place. It’s where I go to forget that we have other major issues to deal with and that the room across the hall is actually still BRIGHT purple and teal….

It feels nice to be back in blogland. Work has been a little crazy, other things have been a little crazy but I started thinking the other day…I blog best when I’m busy. I started this blog right before busy season and then the most I ever updated was right in the thick of busy season….I think it’s my therapy to offset the other, more number oriented, side of my brain when I don’t have time to actually go do. When I do have time to go do the things I’m dreaming about I get really wrapped up in them and don’t take as much time to sit down and type my dreams out. I feel like we have so much to catch up on!…like how I was a peacock for halloween and it was the best, warmest idea I ever had.


This dark at 5:30 thing is really throwing me off! It’s 8pm and I feel like I am up past my bedtime…

screens & crown

Oh right, I forgot I write a blog on the side! Truth be told I’m just in a burn out phase of all things screen. Here is my day in screen world:

Wake up: stare at screen to turn off alarm…since the phone is in my hand I’ll scroll through some emails
Coffee: stare at ipad screen to do the morning devotional
Work: at least 8 hours staring at my computer screen
Home: catch up on all social media via iphone or ipad …more screens
Later: might catch an episode of something on the TV screen
Later Later: talk myself into blogging via screen (computer, ipad, iphone)


I’ll get over it but I know I need to make an honest effort to try and at least keep things current. I know personally the blogs I read I get all excited and sucked in and then if there isn’t something new there all the time I get sad about it. Like I miss these strangers I don’t even know. Haha. Oh blogland. You are so fun and so creepy at the same time.

So. Yesterday, we put up crown moulding in the hall bathroom. It was quite an experience situation.

See, if your mind doesn’t think in crown moulding language this will be a very difficult and maddening task. Generally, people who are decent with numbers cannot visualize space very well. Let me clarify: if you have to try more than two times to fit a pair of shoes correctly into a shoe box then you better buy twice as much crown as you need.


Kidding. a little. Not twice as much but you definitely need extra. Or a good plan. And about a thousand pieces of paper documenting each cut, in order, and then a picture diagram as well. oh and two highly trained and experienced supervisors.


Oh and then if just the spacial reasoning wasn’t enough don’t let me forget to reintroduce you to our old friend plaster. Here is what crown with a nail gun should look like. A quick nail in where the stud is (blue tape)


Here is what crown with plaster and a nail gun looks like:


it’s like “here is a healthy wall…here is a wall on drugs”. I shouldn’t blame plaster completely. I mean, Blake may or may not have asked me to turn the pressure on the gun up and I may or may not have thought I was maxed out when it wasn’t even half way up. ….there is inconclusive evidence on that mistake.

I do appreciate our plaster when it is coming a hurricane outside (nearly everyday) because even though all of our belongings get tossed around like toys I can’t even tell 🙂


I’ll show you guys some official before and after pictures of the final product tomorrow once we get it all finished (just need to spackle, caulk, paint). It looks soooooo much better!


ps: I’ll also share our cutting cheat sheet we finally found in the miter saw instruction manual…. who would have thought it could ever be beneficial to read an instruction manual?? 🙂