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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,…

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…

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…