Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Spring Preview

So our weather here today 61 and sunny. I would love days like today everyday, for the rest of the year. But it was certainly a nice preview of what spring will soon be like. This unseasonably warm winter has gotten us in the mood to get excited for spring, and summer. So we ordered some seeds and plants! We have big plans for the backyard, as well as the side yard where we recently built a retaining wall. Here is some inspiration and also some of the stuff we can't wait to get planted and growing!

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 Love the fence and the gate! So organized.

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 Such a great way to utilize apple crates and baskets!

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 Window boxes and color. Such curb appeal!

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I'd love to do a path like this from our driveway to the back of the house. 

Herb garden! We have several herbs picked out that I can't wait to use for cooking. We had a small basil and parsley plant on the kitchen windowsill at my old apartment. Love that we have a yard and deck for this now.

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 My parents always had fresh fruit and veggies on the kitchen counter. I can't wait to do the same, with our own, home-grown stuff!

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I'm most excited for this thing! Called a PeeGee Hydrangea tree. Perfect blooms for bouquets in the house!

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 How cute is this package? Love that we'll have our own tomatoes!

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The shed in the backyard is going to be the perfect backdrop for these, which I'll be able to see from our kitchen window. Which is really going to brighten up dish washing for me.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Coffee, coffe, coffee!

I was never really a huge coffee drinker until college. Mostly thanks to my mom making a cup every morning (with milk and chocolate syrup) and seeing the Gilmore Girls live by it for years. I realized it actually tasted delicious, whether it was an iced cup from the amazing coffee shops in the New Mexico heat, or a nice hot latte from Sheetz in PA winters, and kept me awake and functional! I especially loved it when I was working two jobs at a real estate and construction company and at a preschool with my own preschool class. You almost had to have some form of caffeine-ation just to be able to keep up with those kiddos. Nowadays, I need it to keep up with my new grown up responsibilities; working, cleaning, cooking, while still being able to have enough energy left over to enjoy life.
Any kind, any time- although these days I've switched up my iced frap to a warmer version of 3/4 cup coffee, 1/4 cup creamer or milk, and a tablespoon or so of caramel syrup. Mmm. Perfect way to kick of a cold winter day.
Just thought I would share my love for the stuff!

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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Chalkboard Paint

Even though I love my wine cork board, I love a good chalkboard too. They're so simple but leave so much room for statements to be made. And not just with the words written on them. I've collected some inspiration and plan on painting something with this diy chalkboard paint. This recipe allows you to make colors other than black, although I think I might stick with the classic. I can't wait to try some of these projects!

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I don't know that I would do a whole wall, but I love the room for things other than grocery lists.

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This is so cute- love the polka dot boards too! Great pantry-and way to plan menus.

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 How. Neat. Is this?! Perfect place for a calender, grocery and to-do lists. Or just pretty flowers.

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This would be so easy to make, and great for a laundry room. Such storage and functionality!

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 I love the endless possibilities of artwork chalkboards create. A different quote, decoration, picture, etc for every day, season and mood. (Love Juila Child too.)

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 Great for Thanksgiving, or every day.

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Love the brick back splash and open shelving. Goes right with the simplicity of the blackboard.

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So cute and functional even on a smaller scale.

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 Handwriting could use some work, but this would be perfect for an herb garden!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Baskets

I've always been one for dual purposes, especially when it comes to decorating the home. If it looks pretty, great. But does it serve a purpose? If not, it's probably not in my house. Which brings me to one of my favorite things to use everywhere- baskets. The intricate weaving is impressive and perfect for holding anything and everything. Y'all have seen my use of baskets in my house, and I plan on adding more.
Here are some inspirations!

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Curtain hooks on towel rods. Genius.

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 DIY Sofa table with baskets as drawers. Add felt to the bottom for easy sliding.

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 Organize handy kitchen items.

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 For blankets in the living room, guest room, bedroom... anywhere!

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 Love the "blankets" tag.

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 For firewood, even if it's more decorative.

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And of course, to hold flowers, permanently or on their way to the vase.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

She's country.

We are torn between nostalgia for the familiar and an urge for the foreign and strange. As often as not, we are homesick most for the places we have never known. - Carson McCullers

Believe it or not (and sometimes I can't believe it myself) I have recently become infatuated with moving to a farm or larger piece of land with a crazy old house to work on. I'm not sure where it came from; could be because we went to a neighboring town's Walmart and it was one of the few left that didn't have a super food center, but still had more than enough and the people were so nice and it was the only time I haven't wanted to kill someone while shopping there. It reminded us of what life could should be like. Could be that we're getting a hunting dog and would like to start breeding a few years from now and certainly couldn't do it successfully at the house we're in now. Could be that we're watching the Outdoor Channel all the time (I even watch it by myself). Could be that we're getting older and wiser and less tolerant of stupid people and just want to get out to the country (I completely understand why my dad always said all he needed was a couple hundred acres). Could be that both of our parents are that way and it's finally kicking in. Or it could just be a phase and next week, I'll want to live in a big city again. I do not know.
All I know is that lately I want nothing more than to raise chickens and have fresh eggs, grow a huge garden, sunflowers, roses and hydrangeas everywhere for our own food and fresh cut flowers all over the house, raise puppies, have a sheep, and maybe some elk (boyfriends request). I want to sit out on a front porch with the boyfriend at the end of the day and watch the sun go down. I want to leave our windows open, letting the fresh air and sunshine in, all the time. I want to garden and cook and get back to the simple life. That's all. 
Of course, none of this is going to happen, anytime soon anyways. But a girl can dream. And that's about all I do lately. Even though we're in a beautiful house and it keeps getting better with all the work we're doing, I'm just about ready for our next project and phase of our life. Who knows where and when. But we're already dreaming up big plans. It's so nice to have options, and things to look forward to. Not that we don't enjoy the life we live now; it's also wonderful and we're so blessed. And we still have big plans for the house we're currently in. But the boyfriend and I are always thinking ahead and planning for what's next for us.
I have about a billion pictures of this new life. Sometimes I think it would be easier just to make a Tumblr and spare y'all the dialogue. But I've come so far with this blog so I'll stick with it for now.
Here are some pictures of a barn I'd love to be on the property. It's one of many things on my checklist. Oy.

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Monday, January 23, 2012

Closets

So we finished the master bedroom last week! It's painted, the trim is done, the closet is in, doors are on, now all it needs are some shelves and rods and we'll be ready to finally put all of our clothes away! I've been looking at a hundred and one ways to build a closet and have had a few ideas. Although these are unrealistic, I had these pictures on hand for a while, for some dream-closet inspiration.

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Mmm, ya I'd like flowers in my closet!
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This is probably more or less what we'll go for. The boyfriend can build it around the closet so it's almost like a walk-in. Niiice. I can't wait!

Here's the progress we've made so far! (Sorry the format's a mess. I'm still learning...)
Master Bedroom Closet
The paint we chose for this room really warms it up- it's called Iced Chocolate. And it sure beats that awful peach color! Whose hubby lets them pick pink for the bedroom?!





















Middle Room Closet                 

I know this isn't of the closet but I had to share what we've done with the "Middle Room" (not really sure what else to call it, besides a loft...) This wall used to be a full wall which made it impossible to get anything upstairs (we had to cut our box spring in half and reassemble it once it was in the master bedroom). Now, the boys were able to drywall, lumber, etc up the stairs without any trouble. This will make it so much easier to furnish the remaining rooms. We plan to put a sofa in here, with bookshelves and probably a tv, for a sort of sitting room.
We're painting this room next! You can see our testing on the far left wall. It's called "Coastal Villa"- the boyfriend skillfully picked it out. Love it!



Office/Guest Bedroom Closet
We haven't decided what color we're painting this room yet.

But the boys sure have done an amazing job and you can't beat free labor, or the satisfaction of knowing you've done it yourself.

There's still a lot of work to do but we enjoy doing it and are loving the results!