our process for picking white paint

picking-white-paint

Our house is a disaster. And I couldn’t be more excited about it.

We’ve been waiting years to do a few big projects to our house and finally took the plunge. The floors were ripped up last week, the walls needed a fresh coat of paint and the new floors will be installed this week. In the meantime, we’re living in a construction zone with all of our furniture moved out and no stove to cook on (which just means eating out or at friends’ houses and I’m not complaining about that!).

I posted about our flooring options and it was helpful to run through all of the choices and hear what you had to say. We made our final selection, placed the order and have let them acclimate in the house for the past few weeks (sneak peeks coming!).  Well, once we pulled up all the carpet and existing hardwoods downstairs in preparation for the floor install, we decided it was the right time to paint the walls. Normally I’m the painter. I really don’t mind it and do a decent job. But the places that needed new paint the most – the stairway, ceilings, hallways and tall walls in the living room – were not areas I was excited about working on. Besides the difficulty factor, it would also take us weeks, and we just don’t have time with kids and soccer and work and the holidays coming up.

So we hired painters. I’ll tell you what, I may never go back to painting myself again. They do such amazing work and they are quick. Yay for nice people who paint houses for a living!

The only problem is that it costs money. And when you’re paying a bunch of money to have nearly every wall in your house painted, you really, really want to make sure you pick the right color. There are a million bigger issues out there than choosing paint colors, I am well aware. I felt ridiculous going back and forth, painting swatches, staring at five whites that looked exactly the same and yet I also didn’t want to waste money on a color that we didn’t love.

white-paint-sample-pots

We knew we wanted white. I’ve been craving clean, fresh, light, bright. One peek at my living area pinterest board and you’ll instantly see what my eye is drawn to. We moved into our home 8 years ago and the walls and ceilings were all the same khaki-ish color. It’s a fine color, but started feeling dark – especially during our dreary Pacific Northwest winters when the sun doesn’t show up much. So white was the obvious choice. Continue Reading →

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art from art (woodland animals + templates)

art-from-art

Today I’m joining in on a fun ‘think outside of the box’ challenge so if you’re here from Perfectly Imperfect, welcome!

My blog friends Jamin and Ashley published three awesome books filled with removable 8×10 art prints. The idea is brilliant and makes switching out art affordable and so, so easy.  The art work is all great, but no one can hang all of it in their homes, so they challenged a group of bloggers to come up with other creative uses for the artwork – the only request was that we could not place them in a frame (which I sort of cheated on …).

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I was inspired to use the pretty paintings to create these cutie royal woodland animals. I call it making art from art.

woodland-artwork

They were so simple to make (and I even have templates for you so you can make them too!). Continue Reading →

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thanksgiving table

thanksgiving-table-inspiration

Thanksgiving has always been one of my favorite holidays. I know I say that about every major celebration, but truly, Thanksgiving ranks high (like right at the top with christmas and easter). We have the best memories of Thanksgiving from when we were kids – big family gatherings, weekends at my great Aunt & Uncle’s house in their small town, cutting down our christmas tree – and it’s continued to be a time of year that feels festive and filled with tradition even now.

thanksgiving-table-setting

I love watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade with the kids, then the dog show after (weird, I know. But I tend to be a bit like my mom and she always kept the dog show on so naturally, I do the same), then football for days. Our house fits the most people in it, so we often host here which we love. We do some of the cooking, and the rest of the family each bring a favorite dish (sweet potato puree, sauteed green beans with shallots and bacon, sweet potato cranberry crescent rolls – yum). Continue Reading →

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start today: a thankful tree with printable tags

For the past three years our family has done a thankful tree and it has become my kids’ favorite tradition for this time of year.

make-a-thankful-tree

Our entry table was the spot for our tree last year, and this year it sits on the bar cart in our dining room (photos coming tomorrow!)

A full explanation is on this original thankful tree post, but the idea is simply to grab a few branches, pop them in a pretty urn and put out tags to write on and then hang from the tree. As the boys went out the door to school this morning, each stopped to think of something they are thankful for and put it on a tag. It was so sweet to watch them do it on their own and take a few seconds to reflect before they went on with their day. You can dedicate a time each day to do this as a family, or just let them go at it – which is probably our approach this year – every time they pass the tree, they are welcome to use another tag.

thankful-tags-in-silver-bowl

thankful-tags-hanging-from-branches

There are thankful tags from that first thankful tree post which you are welcome to use, or choose your favorite from these designs.

free-thankful-tags

free-thankful-tag-dowloads

Just dowload the pdf, print on your favorite paper (see my favorite sources here) and cut around the edges. Punch a hole in the top if you’ll be hanging from branches, or just use as little cards to keep in a pretty bowl, or on your thanksgiving table or as lunchbox notes.

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october recap

october-highlights

Instagram continues to be my favorite social media outlet of choice. It’s such an easy and visually pleasing way to share day-to-day activities, tell you what’s happening on the blog and to connect with ladies from all over the world. I have much to improve in my photography skills, but it sure is fun to try different angles, look for pretty lighting or interesting compositions (zooming in close to the wheelbarrows, for example). I learned a ton in Ashley’s iphone photography class (definitely worth it! Or try her dslr for fancier photography skills) and continue to play around using my iphone to take pretty pictures.

Here are a few of the highlights from this past month.

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