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One of my favorite things to do when I visit a home design blog is to click on the Home Tour page and gaze at all the marvelous photos of other people’s homes.  You, too?  This is not a new obsession: Even pre-children, Fireman and I used to frequent local Parade of Home tours for the sheer joy and pleasure of walking through newly constructed, beautiful homes.  What I love most about Home Tours is that they reflect the styles, personalities, and stories of the families within.  Tours are a personal, private glimpse into other homeowners’ lives, and although we find much to admire in other homes, we often realize that in many ways, we all deal with the same dilemmas in our homes.  Things like mudroom chaos, inefficient closet organization, pantry storage issues, and paint color mishaps.  In the end, although a Tour can be gorgeous and photos stunning,…

One huge risk of re-purposing is that sometimes you come across deals that are best left behind. Or perhaps not, because MAYBE…with enough paint and some pretty fabric and enough time…. (and there, once again, you’re HOOKED on a deal that should be left behind because re-purposing is simply part of your DNA and you just can’t help yourself). Which is part of the story behind this couch Fireman and I brought home yesterday. I know, I know. Kinda gross, VERY weathered, and those cushions??  We were somewhat afraid to sit on them. But you see, there’s this local guy named Seth, and Seth has become a “picker” friend of sorts for me, and when Seth emailed and asked if I wanted this couch, I had a hard time saying no.  One, because I like Seth.  And two, in my re-purposing mind, I kept seeing pictures like these: Lovely, outdoor…

Okay, who needs a little home improvement project to stimulate your Tuesday?  I spent a few blissful hours DIYing around my home this weekend and the solitude ~ along with the accomplishment ~ was good for my soul.  In the not-so-recent past, I often tried to “squeeze” decorating or creative endeavors into my life….often feeling indulgent and even guilty for doing so… but over time I realized that creativity could no longer be an aside in my life.  Something within me, within my very design, longed to be expressed and released.  For me to suppress or dismiss that longing was to minimize its significance to my own well-being and purpose, and perhaps even to rob others of whatever small offering I had.  It truly was a turning point in my life. ( If this is a struggle you share as well, I highly recommend the book A Million Little Ways…

Now that the dust has settled and I’ve had a day to catch up on rest after my first in-home Vintage Market, I wanted to share a few details on how things went, what I learned, and what my plans are for next time.  And yes, there will most definitely be a NEXT time because I don’t know about you, but this Market was such a dream come true for me that I can’t imagine not doing it again.  I’m sitting here this morning savoring all the memories of meeting you, discussing everything from the painting of chandeliers to the versatility of paint drop-cloths, from whether or not to paint bookshelves/outdoor furniture/lamps to the 101 ways you can decorate with shutters in your home.  I am so touched and honored by all who came out on a gorgeous Saturday to say hi, supported this endeavor, and took a little piece of my…

Good Morning!  We are down to the final countdown of  my first ever in-home Vintage Market (4 more days!) and I am heading back out to the shop first thing this morning to dive in to more sanding, prepping, cutting, painting, distressing, and sealing the few lsat pieces of furniture, handpainted signs, and a few fun cutting boards.  Fireman and I had such a good time yesterday designing and cutting out several provincial-style cutting boards that will look great on a shelf in your dining room or leaning against the backsplash in your kitchen ~ adding that farmhouse/rustic charm we all love so much. Remember this space from last winter, the studio I was working on in the lower level of our home (just before Project Go-Back-To-Teaching commenced?) This week the studio is receiving a major overhaul and will serve as our in-home store on Saturday.  Here are a few…

If this is your first time visiting my blog, I am so honored you are here!  I hope in some small way you find encouragement, inspiration, and validation as a mommy, a wife, and a creative soul.  If there’s one thing I’ve learned about women in my decades of walking in the (sometimes) cute shoes of one, it’s that women long to know they’re not alone in their frustrations, their worries, their fears, their celebrations, and their milestones.  Let me assure you, dear reader: YOU ~ are not alone.  I am eager to share this blogging journey with you in authenticity, creativity, and homemaking. One of the things I love to do in our home is combine my faith and inspiration with decorating so that our walls and spaces truly reflect the virtues and personal character we value.  One way to do this is through painted wooden signs, an easy and inexpensive way to speak scripture, encouragement, and hope to all who…

Amaya’s room is finally finished enough to post a few pictures.  There is more I’d like to do in this space,  but with school in session and weeks flying by, I thought I would post what we’ve accomplished so far, with more updates later. Amaya really wanted hot pink bedding, but to keep the room from feeling too little girl sweet, I ordered a gray buffalo-check duvet cover and shams from Ikea.  I like how the gray check balances out the more feminine pink and faux fur in the room. We did a cheater’s Board and Batten treatment on her walls which means we did the battens directly over the textured sheetrock without adding the “board.”  This treatment adds such dimension and detail to a room!  (Although it can make it a bit trickier to hang artwork, mirrors, etc.)  The board and batten is painted Sherwin Williams Creamy, and the…

Some of you may not know I grew up running barefoot through cut corn rows, galloping my pony through shaded trails with only fragments of faded twine for reins, shampooing my hair in a crystal-clear lake on summer Saturdays, and playing tag on combines and seeders and John Deere tractors during which if you touched the ground at any time, you were IT. I think back on those days sometimes, recall the damp and dark of summer nights, the heart-pounding thrill of Kick-the-Can, the lonesome, eery cry of loons.  If I think hard, I can almost smell the lake again, touch the pebbled back of a toad in my hand, burrow my toes into the cooling sand of nightfall. This week, I attempted to bring some of that beloved country-girl back in the form of a darling little chicken house for our family’s first-ever laying hens.  (And yes, we even…

Every now and then I spot something absolutely adorable, and in my own Minterest way (Mind + Pinterest = Minterest :)) file it away until I have the time and/or the resources to make my own. Awhile back, Miss Mustard Seed posted this darling ticking slipcovered stool on her blog.  She walks readers through a detailed tutorial about how to sew your own, so I won’t go into those details here.  But as soon as I found a couple $5 stools knocking around town, I attempted my own darling slipcovers. I started with two basic stools like this one. I lightly sanded and painted the stools SW Creamy using my homemade chalk paint, then distressed them.  The blue ticking fabric came from Walmart at only $7 per yard, so of course I bought several yards because, well, who doesn’t need ticking fabric lying around for all sorts of fun…

Life is beautiful when it’s Monday morning, the sun is rising so that every tree you see is glowing pink, and your sister texts and asks if you’re up for a run.  How convenient that you already had your running clothes on so of course you say YES, and that is just the best way to start the week EVER. Today I’m going to show you the fruit of our weekend labor: the DIY Plank Top Work Table we made for the studio.  Already loving this table.  As matter of fact, it currently sports three drawers I’m painting and is proving quite the workhorse. Plus it’s quite handsome-) I painted this table white three years ago for our homeschool room.  (If I begin to recount all the work, play and creating that occurred on this table I may get emotional, so I’ll move on quickly.) I started the transformation…