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painting

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After typing this post title, I googled the definition of “hack” and found everything from “an untalented professional” to “a cough” to “an unlicensed taxicab driver.”  And of course the more obvious: “A rough cut or blow.”  Finally, after scrolling way, way down (that’s for you Shelli :)) I found what I was looking for: “To change colour by painting or to make it do something other than its intended purpose. Normally with home decorations to suit your decor. Or to make things more useful.” So that’s what this happy post is about.  I hacked some bookshelves.  If you’re new here, you may not know hacking furniture is a thing with me. This particular hack involved a pair of cheap bookshelves, gray paint, peel-n-stick wallpaper, 1/4″ plywood backing, and a few nails. And a Fireman because he’s brave, kinda cute, and very handy. Haven’t we all, at one point or…

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,…

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…

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…

One of the most daunting projects on my Sixteen Days of Getting my House in Order was painting the kitchen cabinets.  I finished this week-long project early to mid October, so we’ve been living with white cabinetry for six weeks now. My overall six-week-in evaluation?  I cannot believe the difference white cabinetry has made in this space. I thought I would share more details about my process in this post, and also give an update on how the paint is holding up in our busy family kitchen. First of all, there were a lot of beautiful things about the original kitchen, specifically the warm tones of the wood stain and the textured travertine backsplash. However, as we’ve worked to make this home more our style, the dark colors in the kitchen began to clash more and more with the brighter, whiter spaces we were developing in the remainder of the…

I hit the gym early this morning, immensely grateful I could do squats again with a strong knee. I’ve never had knee problems, but last week during my squat routine I felt something pull…or tweak…or (gasp) rip in there and I thought, “Oh no, what was THAT?” The next several days I really favored it and cringed when the pain would come back, worried I might have an injury. However, I truly believe in the power of prayer, and I’ve been praying lots of healing over my knee. Today it worked great, and I give Him the glory for that. I’ve been saying for, oh, 6 years now that I wanted to be a bread maker. The kind of bread maker who makes her family wholesome, nutrient-laden breads that nourish both the body and the soul. I’ve read books on it, taken a bread-making class, subscribed to a bread-making newsletter…yet…

On Saturday I planned ahead and “scheduled” a day of creativity.  Somehow, writing CREATE on my calendar granted me permission to do those things around my house that might otherwise be considered fluff. Let’s face it: A girl needs fluff on a regular basis. Among the little things I’ve been adding to my creative to-do list was to go back into the rooms I’d somewhat finished and add personalized details.  I read a quote in a design magazine the other day that said, “God is in the details.” I recognize that I often stop short in the accessorizing department (a fundamentally all-too-common error, one of my favorite designers Suzanne Kasler says).  It seems like by the time I’ve painted walls & furniture, selected fabrics, and arranged everything, I’m ready to move on.  It’s also because I still feel like such a baby in this area!  You’d laugh if you knew how long it took me…