Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Rosemary Beach... Here We Come

Tomorrow we take off for spring break!

Rosemary Beach or bust...

Source: via Karen on Interest

I'm slathered up in my self-tanner and dreaming about what awaits us. Most of our time will be spent here...

But, we might take a break from that and take a dip here...

Source: Uploaded by user via Lauren on Interest

I'm looking forward to checking out the gorgeous architecture.

We plan to take many bike rides.

And what bike ride would be complete without a little reward at the end...

Source: via Julie on Interest

Of course, I'm hoping to sneak out for a little shopping by myself. This place is on the top of my list...

I am a huge fan of Tracery Interiors, and I am not above stalking them while I'm in town.

This is our first time to this part of Florida. Have you been to Rosemary Beach? Any recommendations on things we should see or do??

Mostly I'm just looking forward to spending time with my family and making happy memories. Of course, things don't always work out as planned. You can read about last year's spring break trip here

Wish us luck!!

Monday, March 26, 2012

A New Dining Table

I went bathing suit shopping this morning, so understandably, I am not in the best mood right now.

I'm going to keep this post short and sweet, as I've determined that I should no longer spend any length of time sitting on my rear end.

So here's the latest on the home decorating front: I bought a new dining room table...

It is a Drexel Heritage table. It is larger and darker than my old table, and seats 4 additional people. But, most importantly, it was an unbelievable deal.  Like, no way could anyone possibly buy a dining table for this price, kind of a deal.  I scored it at a local shop, but I've seen the same table selling for more than double on ebay.

The table weighs a TON, and unfortunately, we put the legs on the wrong way. I don't think my husband was too thrilled when I pointed that out to him.

I don't know if this table would have been my first choice if it had been regular price, but the deal I got made it the best table ever.

And, it was much less painful to shop for than bathing suits :)

Sharing at Tuesday's Treasures

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Some Exciting Stuff

I have some really exciting things to share with you today. Try to contain yourselves.

First of all, I have a HUGE announcement to make. Are you ready? Here it is...

Drumroll, please...........

For the first time in 11 years, we are officially 
a diaper-free household!!!! 

Pretty thrilling, isn't it? Do you think I could pass the Diaper Genie off as a garden stool?

Yeah. Probably not.

In other exciting news, the living room pillow I was waiting for is here!

The lumbar pillow is done in the Magnolia Gootar fabric. The welting is done in the same fabric as the two geometric pillows.

I feel like the room is finally coming together. 

Hope you are having an exciting day!!

Sharing at Tuesday's Treasures

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Controlling the Chaos: Keeping Kids Rooms Clean

Happy Spring!! We are having the strangest March EVER, and I am loving it! Temps in the 80s, flowers in full bloom, flip flops and shorts, dinner on the grill... what's not to love?

It's a good thing I started my spring cleaning early, as it's very difficult to stay indoors on these beautiful sunny days! I did manage to spend some time deep-cleaning our master bathroom this weekend.

Ahhh... that's better! I swore when we remodeled this room that I would keep it looking perfect, but let's just say I sometimes fall short of that goal :)

Would you believe that the room that has stayed the tidiest belongs to my oldest sons?

I blogged about cleaning and organizing their room HERE back in January, and it has stayed that way ever since! Some of you have e-mailed me asking how that is possible. Well, I'll admit that it involves a bit of bribery incentive.

I created a task chart.

It includes tasks that I expect them to complete daily: make beds, put clothes away, wipe down sink area.
There are also weekly jobs of dusting and vacuuming, washing sheets and putting laundry away.

The kids receive an allowance at the end of each week. If there are any infractions (I love using that word!), money is deducted from the allowance. Infractions cost fifty cents and include leaving anything out in the room (on floor or dressers) or not completing a daily task. Weekly tasks must be completed on the weekend. Fifty cents is deducted for each day past the weekend that a task is not completed.

This "system" has been a lifesaver!! The kids' room is clean (without my help!), and the boys are learning responsibility and taking pride in their work. It's a win/win! Of course, there are other chores around the house that they do without getting paid. That's just part of being a team player.

Anywho... if you're struggling with messy kids' rooms, this system might just work for you, too!

Now, perhaps I should give myself an infraction when I don't keep our bathroom looking like this...

It sure makes me happy when it's sparkling clean.

Two rooms clean and organized. Many more to go.

Are you a neat freak? Or are you committing some infractions??  :)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

HomeGoods and Bads

You know what is so cool about HomeGoods?

Finding awesome pillows at a great price... like these black and white beauties my mom brought home.

You know what's not cool about HomeGoods? Finding these...

Pillows in the Magnolia Gootar fabric. This is the fabric I stalked for months, paid a pretty penny for, and just sent to the workroom for unique, one-of-a-kind, custom pillows.

Oh, the shock and horror I experienced when I saw these pillows on the HG shelf for a fraction of what I paid! Guess my pillows are no longer custom or unique :(

Here is the ottoman I had just gotten reupholstered in the same fabric.

Still waiting for my "custom" pillow :)

Well, I snatched up the only pair of Magnolia Gootar pillows at my local HG store. (Hope they don't get any more in.) What can I say? They were a bargain. And I think they'll look nice on my future wingback dining chairs.

The insanity continued when my mom and I were perusing the clearance shelves. My mother spotted a bowl exactly like the one on her kitchen table.

The problem: My mom bought her bowl in Turkey for over $100...

And, there it was on the HomeGoods clearance shelf for $29.99.

So, before you pick up any pottery on your next trip to Italy or Spain, you might want to check out your local HomeGoods first.

I found this little Italian dish for a steal :)

(The opinions expressed in this post are my own. HomeGoods did not pay me. But, I wish they had.) 

Monday, March 12, 2012

I've Gone Wild in the Living Room

There's another animal in the house...

Animal print, that is. I found this zebra print lumbar pillow on Etsy.

I really like animal prints in small doses, and this pillow gives the living room some much needed textural interest.

What about you? Are you wild about animal prints in home design? Or do you prefer they stay outside?

Friday, March 9, 2012

Sweet Spaces: Incredible Bathroom Renovation

Check out this gorgeous bathroom...


Would you believe it started out looking like this? .....


This is the original bathroom in Cindy's 1930s home. She lived with it for 16 years before taking on the remodel.


I'd say it was worth the wait. Wouldn't you?

The original footprint was not ideal, so Cindy stole some space from bedroom closets to get the desired amount of room.



Cindy had a difficult time choosing finishes, as she likes many different styles.


She ultimately chose to go with Daltile Navelli Carrera Star 12 x 12 tiles on the bathroom floor and shower walls, a marble mosaic for the shower floor, and this unique bubble accent tile.



I love how Cindy positioned the tub in front of the shower. Such a wise use of space, and makes a great design statement.


The ceiling is painted Sherwin Williams' Black Magic. The crown molding is dropped about a foot from the 9' ceilings with rope lighting behind it. How cool is that?


The custom vanity has a soapstone countertop.



I thought this bathroom had such a unique and interesting mix of materials that gave it a definite "wow factor."  Hope you enjoyed it, too :)

Thank you, Cindy, for letting me show off your beautiful bathroom!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

My Living Room (Have I Lost You Yet?)

If my blog were a TV show, it would be Lost. Remember how Lost would take you in one direction, get you involved in the lives of certain characters and then go off the air for 6 months or shift focus to completely different events? Eventually, the audience would forget what the heck was even happening with half the characters or situations.

Well, that's kind of how my blog is. I show you a room, give you the background, share my plans for changing it, maybe tweak a few things, keep you on the edge of your seat for the reveal of my fabulous design (work with me on that one, people. I'm making an analogy), and then leave you hanging while I go strip wallpaper in another room. By the time I come back to the original room, you probably can't remember a thing about it.

Do you even remember my living room?

This is how it was looking on the last "episode."

One of the issues I've had with this room is trying to balance the large piano with the smaller scale upholstered pieces. A couple of readers suggested I move the cabinet that was behind the piano.  So, I did...

Thank you, brilliant readers! I love the cabinets flanking the entrance to the foyer. And, I decided I loved the Anthro plate I bought last week, and went back for a few more and a couple of teacups and saucers.

And, speaking of love ...

I almost hugged the UPS driver when he delivered my pink velvet ottoman. This was a COM order from Ballard Designs, and I have been waiting so very patiently for it to show up on my doorstep :)

When I moved the cabinet, I decided to turn the piano so the keys were facing into the room. I hesitated to do that for a long time, because the sound quality is better if the piano's soundboard is open to the room. However, none of us is a concert pianist, so what the heck.

I think it looks much better this way.

Still got a long way to go, but I'm pleased with how the room is taking shape. Pillows are being made and my round ottoman is being recovered. I think I'm on ottoman overload! Hoping to have some more updates soon.

In the meantime, I hope that you are like the Lost audience... hanging in there despite the frustration, figuring that soon everything will make sense and there will be resolution.

Linking to:

Simply Klassic Sundays Link Party
Tuesday's Treasures
Wow Us Wednesdays
Whimsy Wednesdays

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

I've Been Tagged

You may have noticed that there's a game of tag taking place in blogland. Well, today I'm "It."

I was tagged by Shasta from In The Old Road.

In The Old Road

If you haven't had the pleasure of meeting Shasta yet, please head over and visit her. She has a wonderful blog about home design and crafting. She is also an angel on earth, providing around-the-clock care to her 9 year old son who has a rare genetic disorder. Much of her blogging is done at his bedside in the middle of the night so she can attend to him when he suffers seizures.  You can read her story here.

The rules of the game go like this: a blogger "tags" another blogger and gives them 11 questions to answer in a post, then that blogger "tags" another 11 bloggers and comes up with 11 questions for them to answer and so on.

Here are my answers to the 11 questions Shasta asked me...

1. What was the first blog that you followed?  Brooke Giannetti's Velvet & Linen. I stumbled upon it when I was searching for inspiration for our bathroom remodel, and I was immediately hooked on it. Still am!

2. Do you still have any Christmas decorations out? Um, I'm embarrassed to admit this, but yes. My husband leaves the lights in our backyard trees so that he doesn't have to restring them year after year. It used to drive me crazy, but I've let it go. You really can't see them unless you are under the tree studying it, but I still feel a little redneck.

3.  Who is your celebrity crush? Hmmm... can't really say that I have one, but Josh Lucas ain't too shabby.

4. Do you have children? (If yes, list age and sex)  I have 4 boys, ages 11, 9, 6 and 3.

5. Milk chocolate or dark chocolate? I know dark chocolate is better for me, but I still prefer the taste of milk chocolate.

6. What is your favorite TV show?"Modern Family" and "Dexter" have been my favorites for awhile, but I'm also really into "Smash" now too.

7. Do you have a nickname? If so, what is it? I've been "Ca" to my family my whole life (pretty creative, huh?).  And, my sister's family calls me "Sas." My nephew started calling me that when he was a toddler and it stuck. He's 15 now, and I'm still "Aunt Sas."

8. What would you do if, all of a sudden, you had a full day of "me" time?  (no children, no husband, just you.) I'd probably stay in my pjs for way too long drinking too much coffee and reading my favorite blogs. I'd eventually get motivated to go play some tennis. Afterwards, I'd treat myself to a little mani/pedi and massage. I'd have a nice lunch out and go shopping and antiquing. I'd meet some girlfriends for dinner and drinks. Then I'd come home, get back in my jammies, curl up with a good book and a bag of Twizzlers. Is it possible to do all that in one day?
9.  Have you ever gone "unplugged" for over 24 hours? (No electronic devices, i.e. cell phones, computer, etc.) Absolutely. Although I love the convenience of cell phones and laptops, I miss the days when being on vacation meant you'd be unreachable for a week.

10.  Would you ever dine alone in a crowded restaurant? There was a time when I would have been self-conscious to do that. Now I'd consider it a luxury :)

11.  What are you wearing? White shirt, black sweater, jeans, and black wellies.

The 11 bloggers I'm tagging are:

Alison at The Polohouse
Linda at A Toile Tale
Glenda at The Paper Mulberry
Joan at For the Love of a House
Maury at Life On Mars
Susie at Susie Harris
Kerry at House TalkN
Jenny at Simcoe Street
Mary Alice at Chateau Chic
Teresa at Our Southern Country Home and Farm
Amber at Simple Dwellings

Here are my questions for them:

1. If you could leave for vacation tomorrow, where would you go?
2. Would you rather have a full-time chef or a full-time housekeeper? 
3. What is the worst job you ever had?
4. What would your dream job be?
5. What is the best book you've read lately?
6.  City or country?
7. Would you rather live in a brand new house or an old one?
8. How would you describe your design style? Modern, traditional, eclectic?
9. Early bird or night owl?
10. Lake house, mountain cabin or beach cottage?
11. What is your favorite pastime?

Thanks to everyone who weighed in on my computer decision! I really appreciate your input!! I'm happily typing on my new MacBook Pro and loving it. 

Still hoping they can recover all my old pictures and files. I have some things I'm looking forward to blogging about once I get my hands on that stuff. Have a good one :)

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Technical Difficulties

Guess what happened to me last week?

Mmmm hmmm.... Computer Crash!!!

I have never had this happen before, and it has completely freaked me out. My laptop is in the shop, the hard drive is shot, and I'm praying that they'll be able to recover my files... and more importantly, my pictures!

I'm in the market for a new computer, and I'd love to get your input. I'm considering this...

13-inch MacBook Pro

The 13" Macbook Pro. Anyone have one of these? I'd love to get your feedback. Please let me know what computer you have and what you like/dislike about it. Thanks!!!

Unfortunately, I'll be out of blogging commission until my technical issues are resolved. Hoping to be up and running later this week.

Have a great day :)