New Light to Brighten the Night

Still adjusting to life with two over here guys 😉 Sweet little H has been so good but you can tell having a sister is just like – ok. I think at this point he might trade her in for a bag of chips (not the spicy kind though – he always tells us he doesn’t like the spicy kind ie doritos after my Dad got them lolol). Well anyway, we’re getting there. One toddler throw down at a time 😉

Emerson has had a rockin light in her room now for a quick second – I truly think it’s one of my all time favorite light fixtures we’ve installed – we DIY’ed it and I love how it turned out.

DIY Light Fixture

Well H’s light fixture was just the same as his sister’s (pre swap out) and I’ve been dying to get rid of the builder grade but not crazy about the idea of forking over $100+ bucks to make it happen. Which is where the ReStore came to my rescue y’all.

See this light? We scored it for ten dollaaassss.

Drum Pendant Light

It’s a pretty darn good size and I knew we could use it to replace a defunct entry light, or H’s light and we opted to put it in the little boy’s room and he loves it! He helped Jay install it and I think he takes an extra pride of ownership knowing that he helped make it happen.

Here is a glimpse of the room with his old light:

Constellation-Themed-Boys-Room

And after the new one was installed!

It fills in the space nicely and for $10, I’m pleased as punch with it.

We also took some lamps from another spot in the house to pop onto Henry’s bookshelf and he loves using them as his “reading lights” (and actually gets a bit peeved with us when we turn them off each night – that and the hall light – but that’s a different story)

Now I still need to find something to fill in those little cubby spaces above the baskets on this bookshelf – any ideas?

Bath Business

So I’m not sure what it *is* about me, but whenever the time for baby is nigh, I’m all – let’s gut a room, Jay! 😀 Scrubbing floors for nesting, not around here! 😉

We wanted to update a bathroom that we use for guests in our casa and renovate it a bit so that it’s more comfortable for them up there in our bonus room. I’ve started an inspiration board, below, to give you an idea of how I’m hoping to configure the space.

While we’re at it (and the room is gutted) I also wanted to update our kitchenette in this room to give it a similar farmhouse / industrial style to what we’ll be doing in the bathroom. Here are some of the initial ideas I had for the space, for reference. To save a ton of dough in the short run, I think we will re-use some damaged cabinets (they had a paint defect) by repainting them, and DIY a counter top. It’s just a guest space, so as long as the install options are durable (and cute!) I’ll be happy with them until we feel like spending more dolla billz down the road. 🙂

Here are some of my favorites – we’ll be doing a shiplap backsplash because I’m all about inexpensive, chic finishes! 🙂

Shiplap-backsplash-kitchen

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I’ll keep you updated – we start gutting the room this Thursday and I’m hoping to have a good head start on it before the babe gets here. She’s currently breech at 35 + weeks so I might have a bit more time to bake her w/ a c-section getting scheduled for week 39. In the mean time, if you need me, I’ll be walking my tail off and laying on ironing boards trying to get this kid to turn 😉

 

Nursery Artwork

You guys – it’s the final countdown now until we’re a family of 4. I’m right at 35 weeks now and I had H at 37 weeks, so I’m hoping this little lady follows suit and we get to meet her in the next few weeks. But alas, these matters are not up to me and so we wait. 🙂

This pregnancy is really a bit hard to capture for me, but undoubtedly, it’s been atypical and full of more uncertainty than this type-a, planner personality is really all that comfortable with. I know no matter what that everything will always be fine because above all else our family has each other, so even if this sweet girl is born with health impacts, we will deal with it with open hearts and open minds and do our best, and really as parents, that’s all we ever can do. If you all don’t mind taking one second to send good vibes out into the universe though, we always appreciate another soul out there rooting for our girl to have a CMV free diagnosis at birth.

Our daughter’s name is Emerson Jeanne, Emerson because we just liked it and Jeanne, because my Aunt Jeanne is arguably one of the most righteous babes to walk this earth. She is smart and witty and kind and giving and just symbolizes the best of humanity to me and I hope more than anything that my Emerson grows up in her image. I’ve found as I’ve been designing Emerson’s room that I actually dig Ralph Waldo Emerson a bit more than I knew, so the first thing you see when you walk into her space is a quote by the wise sage. It reads: “Be Silly, Be Honest, Be Kind”.

I love how the trim Jay added to the space frames out this art perfectly in the room!

Working off the understated floral / botanical theme in her nursery, I also purchased this cute crib sheet. At $26 it was one of the “splurges” for our space, as everything else was reused from Henry’s room or bought off craigslist for the most part.

Here is another vantage of it – I really love this crib sheet and I’m glad I gave myself permission to get this extravagant purchase 😀 I was going to go for another floral one I found that was $12, which seemed more palatable, but y’all yolo.

In this photo you can also see the artwork we purchase for the room off etsy, and then printed for ONE DOLLAR at staples. A dollar, you guys.

I love how it looks in the natural wood frame and have the other matching art from the set flanking the left side of our windows, up above the glider.

We also added in some linen window shades that are room darkening from JCP (where I tend to get all my window treatments because they’re reasonably chic and super cheap).

These ones are not cordless which is a bit of a pain, but they were the linen fabric I wanted so I decided to just suck it up. Once she’s born and sleeping in this room on the daily, they’ll most likely remain shut to create as dark and womb-like a space possible any way 😉

Here is another shot with my all time favorite light hack sneaking in for another feature. 😀

So that’s a wrap guys! Now just waiting on our little girl to fill the space. I hope to have a closet update for you all down the road because I *really* want to put wallpaper in that joint to pretty it up. The perfect backdrop for all her cute dresses! 😀

Little Big Boy

There really is nothing more life altering than popping out a child you guys. Just how much they completely redefine the things you care about (and worry about) and take up 110% of your heart. I’m in awe of our little man and I’m so excited to see how he’s going to navigate being a big brother – my theory is he will view the baby as an enhanced version of his kitty – who he loves to snuggle with, and play with and take care of, and yell at. It will be so fun to see him interact with her – I’m sure they’ll be plenty of inner struggle with the kid getting de-throned and all, but hey, life goes on 😉

So as we’ve been gearing up to provide a new space for our new baby, I got to thinking more and more about how I wanted to make an equally nice space for H. Notably, we had to transition him from his crib to a big boy bed, since his sister would get that resting locale once she’s out of the uterus.

Dark Blue Baby Room

Here is a photo above of how Henry’s nursery looked, with the crib and glider tucked into each corner.

And here is a similar angle with his new twin bed, along with his tepee (which he refers to as his “house”)

So one thing I LOVE about his new room is this super cute and super functional sideboard I got on craigslist. It provides ample storage in the room and gives us plenty of locations to store his toys while leaving them easily accessible for Henry to grab himself.

I’m trying to decide what to do with those little cubbys, up above the baskets, for now they’ll just stay empty.


I also got this bed on craigslist and it’s perfectly worn in and really just gorgeous.

One thing I *don’t* love about toddler rooms is that the bed is like nearly impossible to make nicely w/ no wrinkles and that drives me a bit bonkers lol. Between the guard rail for sleeping and the fact that the bed is tight up against the wall to prevent him from slipping into the crack on the side of the bed, the comforter never is smooth and always has so inconsistency to it. Which frankly is a pretty good analogy for life with a toddler 😉

On the other side of his room is his closet and another bookcase, where we store all the night time reading selections 🙂

I’d love this room to be wood (keep telling the hubby I want to replace the carpet w/ wood and he sorta laughs at me each time – which I’m interpreting as him being so full of joy about this prospect that it just make him laugh but this may be misguided) 😉


Babies on the Brain

Sometimes I think I forget how impactful actually creating a mood board for a space (and executing on it) can really be. I haven’t done that in any of our spaces in this house, in earnest, and it was incredibly fun to do this in our new nursery design and actually see the entire room come into shape.

Charcoal Nursery

Here is the mood board we started with:

Botanical Nursery Design

I’m actually kinda holding myself back from doing this in every. other. room in the house right now (hehe) but over time, I think this will be the approach I more or less take as we tackle the spaces in our casa.

It was super fun to take the same approach with a recent client, who also didn’t want an overly themed space, and wanted to put together a nursery that would grow with her little one over time.


Rustic but chic, right? 🙂 One of my favorite finds lately has been digital artwork on etsy that actually makes it super affordable to do large scale artwork in a space. Adding frames can make it a bit more costly, but when I’m doing huge prints like that on a wall, I usually want a minimalist frame that’s less chunky/expensive anyway. Another really easy option is to print it off as a canvas – which allows you to get a very big piece of art for around $50 – not bad!

Some of my favorite picks are below! (I’m crushing hard on that big cow print as a canvas in our dining room – might have to get it)

Blue Abstract Prints $20 | Constellation Poster $5 | Tree Rings $7.65 | Giraffe Print $6.98 | Green Fern Prints $17.98 | Bicycle Wall Art $10.93


DIY Planter Box

If you didn’t catch my plans for farm living in the city, I’m trying our hand at gardening y’all. And I’m also in a crazy lady state of purging out stuff that is laying around (why – WHY do we accumulate so much stuff in life?). The combination of these two things led to an impromptu planter for our backyard which we’re currently using for the start of our winter garden.

Remember the project I mentioned that fizzled out that had already been started a few months back that left us with some scrap wood that had just been siting in our garage for a long time and was driving me batty – the one we used for our DIY desk top?

Well after we cut the custom dimensions for that top, we still had a small piece left over. I didn’t want to throw it away, but was leaning toward that since it was just sitting in our garage collecting dust (and driving me crazy).

Pine Wood planter, DIY planter, how to build a planter, urban gardening, square foot gardening, compact gardening #UrbanGarden


The more I looked at it though, to more I thought to myself, by george, that might actually work as the base of a planter for our square foot garden experiment.

So I asked Jay what he thought and bless that man’s big old heart, he whipped something together for me in an evening!

Building a planter box, DIY planter, Pine planter, DIY pine planter, cheap planter box. DIY cheap planter box

You can see here that the wood was a bit warped, and gappy before we screwed everything in together.

#UrbanGarden

So Jay just clamped up the sides while he worked and added in a few screws to each board (and glued it too, for extra holding power)

how to build a planter, DIY planter, Planter box, urban garden, square foot garden

Notice it’s getting darker in these shots? 😉

square foot gardening #SquareFootGarden

The next day we added some more vinegar and steel wool stain to darken it up a bit. Nice, right??

DIY planter, Planter Ideas, urban garden, square foot garden, DIY planter box, planter box, easy planter, pine planter

We planted the seeds and they’re already coming up – I think they love this cooler weather!

Square foot garden, urban garden, winter garden, NC gardening, gardening in the city, gardening on small lot


Remember – this is pine wood from Home Depot that was c-h-e-a-p so the entire top before was around $20-$30 – so getting TWO projects out of it is pretty rockin.

Baby Girl Nursery Reveal

I got lots of questions from y’all on the specifics of the wainscoting treatment in our little one’s room, so I wanted to follow up today with some “after” shots of the space, along with a cost breakdown of everything to date. Note, I still need to buy bedding for the crib (we will reuse Henry’s crib in her room), and a touch of artwork, but other than that, y’all we are d-o-n-e (with 9-ish weeks to go!)

So I eluded to it last week, but we decided to go dark in the nursery! We actually painted it the same color as the base on our desk (Ashwood Moss), so that saved us some $$ since we were able to use the same $30 gallon of color matched paint.

Once painted, the wainscoting went from this:

#InteriorDesign #DIY

To this! So classy and I seriously feel like this room is a library y’all.


The trim we purchased was outdoor, plastic stuff (we couldn’t find anything in wood with the dimensions/look we wanted) so it took a few coats of paint lightly applied to the trim to get everything the way it needed to look. It was tedious, but all in all, in a weekend between husband and myself, we had the room done.

The trim we got was closest to this one that I found online, although this is wood grain. Your total cost will depend on how much square footage you need to cover, and how many boxes you want to make, but our total out of pocket cost was just under $200 for this space, and we used about 200 linear feet for ours (which is a 10×11 room).

I decided to go with light wood accents in this space, to go with the botanical theme I have for the room and it looks finnnee next to those dark walls y’all. Here is a shot of the dresser I got on craigslist and a mirror we re-purposed from inside the house. We’ve had it forever, but I think I got it at Homegoods originally.

Here is another angle, of the corner with our glider. Also repurposed from Henry’s room, and the frames have been up since we moved in. They were $12.99 each at Homegoods though! (I have one flanking either side of the window)

And another image of the glider nook, with different lighting. It really does read differently depending on the angle, but I’d say that it’s a charcoal with some greenish tints to it. That lamp base was a $4.99 thrift store find, and it has a target lampshade on it. Craigslist side table. 🙂

Charcoal Nursery

If I have my way and see some beauties pop up on craigslist, etc, I’d also *love* to add pinch pleat drapes to this room down the line, but absolutely refuse to spend hundreds of dollars on it, ya know? If I get ambitious before baby girl comes (or maybe after?) I also plan on wallpapering the closet! I mean, who doesn’t want a sweet looking wallpapered closet? I think it would be the perfect backdrop for a little lady and all their pretty clothes!

That light though y’all – it’s my fav 😀

DIY Light Fixture

So price breakdown so far:

  • $30 in paint (shared w/ desk project)
  • $197 in trim (splurge!)
  • $92 on light fixture (for the jute ball and the DIY light kit – hoping to sell extra spheres to bring this down)
  • $4.99 lamp base
  • $10 lamp shade
  • $125 antique dresser
  • Glider reused from Henry’s room
  • Crib reused from Henry’s room

Getting Ready for Baby

Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. #RegisteringForBaby #CollectiveBias

As always, all opinions are 100% mine (allll minnnee).

It’s hard to believe another Sell is going to be joining us in just a few weeks you guys! One of the biggest things when prepping for any baby – beyond having the room ready – is having all of the other essentials that you know you *need* and definitely won’t have time to grab after you give birth to said member of family. With your first baby, I feel like our registry is what kept everything organized for us and I really recommend registering if you’re a first time parent since it helps you to pre-think a lot of the things that you would just not even know to stock up on.

Target is basically where we do 99% of our baby shopping (mostly so I can do some Mom shopping, too – duhhh) 😉 and it’s probably the best place in my opinion to set up a registry.

Some of my favorite things about the Target registry is that it automatically pre-populates a few must have items right off the bat, which is super helpful to guide new moms with some of the basics (if you click on the image above, it will automatically direct you to these items on Target – even easier!) ;).

You also get a ton of coupons and samples when you go pick up your welcome kit and this stuff is great to have on hand once you need to make a quick run to the store. I’d just advise keeping them all in an envelope in a specific locale so you actually know where they are when you need the coupons down the road (for diaper rash cream, you name it). We didn’t do that with H and I’d often find the coupon after I’d already purchased the item, uggh.

I snagged these baby essentials (which happen to be a few of the items that Target will pre-populate for you) in the store, but you can also buy them online. I mostly just wanted an excuse to get my booty to Target since it’s more or less the best thing ever when you can swing it sans children and solo (no offense fellow housemates)…

#RegisteringForBaby

For those that know Target as, ahem, well, as I do – these items can all be found in the baby department, (1) aisle to the right of the diapers with the creams, etc. If you’re not hopelessly addicted to the red bullseye and have more self restraint than me, you can find these items in aisle N37.

#RegisteringForBaby

Here is a snapshot/screenshot of the Target registry. Another sweet perk is that you get 15% off any remaining items left on your registry after birth. A pretty standard addition with any store but definitely a reason to register!

#RegisteringForBaby

We have a Target card which has always made returns easy for us, but the returns process is no hassle and it for up to a YEAR! We tried to return a duplicate off of another registry when H was born and y’all, it was not fun. I felt like I was trying to negotiate a peace treaty or something. Sage advice, don’t tell a woman a few weeks post partum she can’t return something, hehe. Those hormones yo, it ain’t pretty.

Apparently there is now an app as well for your registry which makes it super easy to add stuff (a little too easy?) 😉 Maybe they had this when I was pregnant with Henry, but I certainly don’t remember it! The app has a portal where you can see who gifted you what, so you can easily track all the purchases which is a huge win. They also offer group gifting on their app if you have a bunch of BFF’s or Aunties that want to go in together and get you a big ticket item – genius! 🙂 You can easily register yourself by going online here.

For now, I’m busy organizing this nursery and getting things like a hospital bag packed (OMG!) – this baby is coming you guys! I say bring on the botanicals – this girl has lots of flowers in her wardrobe so far 😉

Botanical girl clothes

Also, if you haven’t noticed from some of the background photos, the nursery is coming along y’all! I’ll have a reveal on the room later this week – so you can see all the progress but here is a sneak peak! I’ll have a cost breakdown and sources up for the space very soon. 🙂

Charcoal Nursery

 

Lighting the Way

I feel like light fixtures, especially in the bedrooms in the houses we’ve lived in, have always been aspirational check boxes, vs. anything I actually ever get around to. It’s just one of those things that is a bit more out of sight, out of mind, which is a shame because they really can up the anty on a room and make it looks a lot more pulled together (like this guest room back in MI).

Case and point, the light we had in our nursery. lolz.

#DIY

I mean, it just doesn’t reach out and grab you, ya know? 😀 You can see on my mood board, that I had an organic/textury light picked out and I did a bit of a whomp whomp in my heads when I saw on Shades of Light that this bad boy was over $200. Which just felt like a lot, for a dangling basket, more or less.

You guys – sometimes the internet just really comes through for you. This time, it was amazon where I was able to find the *exact* same jute globe, for $80, but instead of 1 globe, I got THREE globes.

#DIY #DIYlightpendant

Now I have no idea how it happened, since these jute balls are now $160 for the set of (3), but I seriously got all (3) for $80! I purchased a DIY kit off amazon as well, and from there, we were ready to hang this light up!

Once they arrived, we decided to use the middle size pendant light for her room, which you can see below before it was up.

#DIY #DIYlightpendant


My goal is to try and sell the other two jute pendants on craigslist to try and recoup some of the cost (or come out ahead), but either way, at this point we’re paying half of what we would have new, so it’s still a win while we hold on to the two other sizes and wait for someone to buy them (or for another room we could use them in).

As soon as I had the room painted, I asked Jay if he’d help me get this in the next morning because I had been dying to see this up and y’all it did not disappoint.

So cute though, right? It looks virtually identical to the one I’d been drooling over and it was so much cheaper! Huzza!

You can see how the lightbulb is a bit off to the side, but it’s really not noticeable, and we could eventually get some type of bracket for the inside if it bugs me enough.

Here is another view from straight down below. I love how different this light fixture is, especially compared to the builder grade light we had up in there before. It adds some natural warmth to the space, which is what I was hoping to have with the darker walls.

Here is another shot of it peeking out, so you can see the juxtaposition against the dark nursery walls. Time to get a crib, some bedding, pop up some art – and this room is done! I’ll have a cost breakdown and more room photos up on the blog next week! 🙂

Now I’m conflicted on which light was a better steal, this one, or our $30 ceiling fan for the back patio. We’ll just call them both a win. 🙂

Dark Nursery Ideas


Trimming it Up

This little ladies room is shaping up nicely so far y’all. It took us a few weekends of dedicated time, but we have some sweet trim action going down in the little lassie’s nursery and I’m getting mighty excited to paint this joint now!

#Wainscoting #DIY #HomeDesign #InteriorDesign

So no, we won’t be leaving the trim white against the gray walls, instead we’re going to paint the whole thing – dark!

Like so!

#NurseryDesign #InteriorDesign

{photo cred, Domino Magazine}


I mean, you guys, are you dying? I’m dying. And I’m loving these dark, dark, moody colors that are in right now. Hey – we went dark on H’s room and I’m all about it, so why not 2/2, right?

Here is a darkish (sorry) shot of how the room looks right now from the doorway, so you can get an idea of how the trim is placed.

#InteriorDesign

I knew off the bat that I wanted everything to be as symmetrical as possible with this trim, which did require a fair bit of pre-measuring to 1) make sure we were optimizing each piece of trim (vs. having large sections of waste and 2) to make sure everything would be centered and equal once up on the walls.

#InteriorDesign, #DIY

We left a 5″ gap around the walls and in between each section – you can see here how that looks on the external corner, right before you get to the door to the hallway.

#InteriorDesign #DIY

Now ideally we would not have had to work around outlets with the trim and all of the outlet boxes would have fallen neatly into each one of these boxes we made, but we have a newer house and by george, they sure love their outlets in like 90’s houses and newer man. I’m like NO ONE has this many electronics they need to plug in – for realz.

Since we were not that lucky we just worked around them to the extent we were able.

#InteriorDesign #NurseryDesign

Overall, I’m super happy with how this turned out! For our install, in case anyone is wondering, we just used a nail gun to put each piece in place, and then came through with a very light layer of caulk to help keep each piece in place and not pop out.

#InteriorDesign #DIY

Jay’s finishing up the caulking this week and from there – get ready to see some paint going on y’all!! Can’t wait to have this room prepped and put together with furniture, etc!


#InteriorDesign #DIY