Friday, April 26, 2013

Mantel Makeover

I don't mess with my mantel much.

I put a farmhouse print on the mantel 6 years ago, and I haven't taken it down since.

Oh sure, I added some pumpkins in the Fall (sometimes)...

and put up garland and stockings for Christmas...

but that was pretty much the extent of my mantel decorating.

(I think everyone who attended a Southern Living party circa 2005 has those olive jars.)

But, change is in the air, and I decided it was time to freshen up the mantel for Spring.

Of course, the makeover began with a mirror I purchased at Home Goods. Mirrors and HG are my crack.

Everything else I already had around the house. I cut some branches from the backyard.

Now my mantel is freshened up and ready for the next six years :)

Are you a mantel decorator? Do you change with the seasons, or are you one of those who decorates for every holiday from Valentine's Day to National Fruit Cake Day (that's on December 27th if you didn't know)?

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Home Goods Rugs

It's no secret that I love shopping at Home Goods. It's like going on a little treasure hunt.

I dug up a chevron rug this week.

It adds a nice finishing touch to the guest bathroom.

These 100% cotton rugs come in lots of fun colors and patterns. This size was $14.99. They do need a rug pad underneath if you're using them on a hard surface. I don't want my guests to slip and hurt themselves... or sue me :)

I actually picked up two rugs to try out in the space. This was the other one...

I love the pattern, but I think it looks too busy with my tile floor.

I think I'll stick with the chevron.

I picked up a couple of other accessories that I'll share with you soon. Yes. One (or two) of them might be a mirror. You can read about my mirror addiction HERE.

Gotta run. Still trying to get the planked wall painted in the kids' bathroom. I'm halfway there...

Have a thoroughly enjoyable Thursday :)

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Paneled Walls in Progress

A big thunderstorm is rolling in, so I'll keep this short and simple.

Just wanted to let you know that we decided to move forward with paneled walls in the kids' bathroom.

The guys were here installing it yesterday. They used Evertrue planks from Lowe's. We needed something real thin, because the baseboards are tile. We didn't want the planks to be jutting out beyond the baseboards.

 They've still got a couple more planks and some trim pieces to install.

Then I get the fun job of priming and painting.

I picked out some cute hooks and accessories, so I'm anxious to get the walls done. Hoping I'll find some time to work on it this weekend.

Okay... going to get off the computer before the lightning strikes. We've been having some crazy storms lately, and apparently Lucky doesn't like it much. He's found a safe place under a shelf in the family room closet.

Hmmm... I might need to turn this closet into a little bedroom for him.

Have a great afternoon!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Something Old, Something New... and Something Blue

Sometimes the very thing you're looking for is right under your nose. Take this ladder, for example.

I've had it leaning against my family room wall, draped with quilts, for ages. But, it looked like this...

It was a little bit country (like Marie Osmond) and too dark for my newly-painted and lightened up family room. So, it was banished to the basement where all of my jewel-toned and dated furnishings have gone to live out their retirement.

Well, recently I've felt as if the wall in my family room needed something to jazz it up. It's a narrow wall between the window and an opening to the sunroom.  Hmmm... what would work in that spot? Duh! How about the ladder that used to be there. But this time I'd ditch the quilts and give the ladder a new look.

So I broke out a can of chalk paint in "louis blue," and painted it.

It's rather electric blue when it's first painted, but with some clear and dark wax, the color is toned down.

Voila! My wall is no longer empty, my ladder gets to come out of retirement, and the project didn't cost me a dime as I had all the materials on hand.

What treasures are hiding in your basement, attic or closet? The perfect piece may be living right under your nose. Or, at least, under your roof :)

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

God Bless America

I just can't write about decorating today. Frankly, it just seems trivial in light of what took place yesterday in Boston. Any time there is an act of terrorism, I am shocked, saddened and angry.

My heart and prayers go out to all those who were injured or killed, to their families, to the first responders, to the witnesses, to all those who jumped in to help, to the doctors and nurses, to the runners who worked so hard for this day, only to have it taken away from them in the most horrific way.

I pray for my kids, who will never experience childhood the way I did .... carefree and innocent. Bad things don't happen in faraway lands. They happen in broad daylight on our land.

I pray for guidance to know how to react and how to make a difference so that terrorism does not become an acceptable norm in our country. I am not going to stand idly by and accept that this is just the way of the world now. I pray that God will stand with us and show us the way.

God bless America.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Beautiful Desert Home Tour

In my last post, I promised to share pictures of Courtney's Arizona home.

Today I'm delivering on my promise.

Hold for a moment please.

Okay, thanks. I just had to pat myself on the back. You see, sometimes I promise to post about something and then veer off in another direction. Apparently, my decorating ADD carries over into my blogging. But not today.

So.... come on in and take a tour of this beautiful desert home.

I love how the glass in the front door can swing open. Not sure if it's technically considered a dutch door, as the frame of the door doesn't separate. Either way, it's beautiful.

Love the wood beams and saltillo tile floors. I wish it was warm enough in the Midwest to have all tile floors.

The living room is my favorite spot. It perfectly reflects Courtney:  warm, welcoming, sweet, stylish and laid-back.

Check out how high the ceilings are...

The large den includes a sitting area...

and a home office.

Courtney always finds really cool furniture pieces. Isn't that primitive TV cabinet awesome? Love how she displayed her album collection on one of the shelves. Don't get rid of your old albums... they make great art! Back in the day, Courtney and I were college roommates and had album covers hanging on our dorm room wall.

Isn't her bed gorgeous with the carved birds?

Her daughter's room has a beautiful antique bed that belonged to Courtney's grandmother.

This is one of the bathrooms. I like how the toilet is hidden from view, and the cabinetry is real furniture. Check out the wood vanity top and the vessel sink. Very cool.

Okay. I know I said the living room was my favorite, but the boys' bedroom is a very close second. Love the beds made from pallets, and the bedding made from Belgian linen.

In Arizona, outdoor living is important (except maybe in the summer!).

A large covered patio houses an outdoor kitchen, dining area and sitting area.

And, a beautiful mountain view tops it off.

Now, if you've fallen in love with this house and you're planning a move to Arizona, you'll be happy to know the house is on the market.

Courtney's family is renting it until they move into their forever home. They haven't even been in the house for a year, and yet Courtney has managed to make it feel like home. I really admire her ability to do that. I could be in the house for 5 years, and still not have it decorated!

All of my pics were taken from the home's MLS listing. I didn't take any pictures of the house during our visit, as once our clan descended upon it with all our belongings, it wasn't exactly blog worthy :)

If you want to see more of Courtney's decorating style, you can check out her Washington state home that I featured HERE.

Have a fabulous Friday!!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013


We are back from Carefree, Arizona, where we were truly carefree for several days.


Our only concerns were whether we should go walking,



The Boulders



horseback riding,

or sightseeing.



We did a Pink Jeep tour in Sedona. It was one of the highlights of our trip. The views were amazing, and the boys loved off-roading and bouncing around in the back of the jeep.


It was rough. Let me tell you.

We stayed with our best friends, Courtney and Eric, and their 3 kids. So between us, we had 6 crazy boys, one beautiful young lady (God bless her),

and a french bulldog named Lulu Bunny.

We tried to convince them to let us bring Lulu home with us, but no go. Luckily, the other Bunny found us on Easter, so there was no shortage of sugar highs.

Alfresco egg-hunting and dining was a real treat, especially since there was still snow on the ground when we left home.

This is Courtney and Eric's beautiful home...

I'll share some interior photos in my next post.

It was a great trip. We had lots of laughs, made memories and drank some darn good margaritas. And, I'm not sure how, but we made it home safely. Even with these two as our pilots...

Has Spring finally sprung for you?  We were happy to come home to sunshine and warmer temps, so we could get some projects done like cleaning the garage. Guess we're not carefree anymore :)