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let’s chat

    When I read a blog for an extended period of time, I start to feel like I know the writer.

    Oh, doesn’t Ashley Ann just come up with the best projects?

    That, Meg. She always makes me smile.

    I was reading Angie the other day :

    I don’t want to be presumptuous in thinking you feel that way about me, but I kind of hope so. When I’m writing on here, I’m usually writing as if to a friend, so I’d like to think that if we met in real life, we would hit it off beautifully.

    So today, let’s pretend we are out to coffee {or sitting around a pool sipping lemonade} just chatting.

    These are a few of the things I might talk about:

    * I have a small infatuation with fonts lately. It could become a problem. I bought two new ones that I love {this one and this one}.  I also recently downloaded about a million free ones from here and here.

    * Even though I know the bachelor/bachelorette is the most smutty thing to watch, I’m always enamored. I’m not in love with this season, but I watch it anyway.  I usually fold laundry at the same time to make it feel like its not a total waste of time.

    * The kids and I spent two weekends ago with my uncle, aunt, cousins, boyfriend and fiancé and it was so great. They live on Bainbridge Island and this is the view from their back deck:


    kind of amazing, right?

    While we were there, we spent an afternoon at an elementary school gym where my uncle is famous. He even has his own poster:

    mr jones

    He is the p.e. teacher and all the kids l.o.v.e. him : especially mine.

    at the gym

    I had forgotten how fun elementary school p.e. is with all the equipment and games. I even pulled out a jump rope and successfully did a few double-unders. Exhilarating, I tell you.

    * The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale starts Friday.  Are you going? Each year we would get our new school shoes at the sale and maybe a few items for back to school. I am so not in the fall shopping mood {we’re hardly even into summer!} so I don’t think you’ll find me there this time around.  You can view the catalog here.

    * I am reading Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle to the boys. I am not sure how I missed it as a kid, but it is my first time and it is such a cute story.  My kids could use a few of Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle’s cures.

    * Have you read any novels lately that are worth reading? I’m looking for a good one. Any suggestions would be appreciated.  My most recent faves have been Water for Elephants, The Help and Peace Like A River.

    * No. 1 painted a picture the other day:

    angry bird

    can you guess what game he likes playing?

    * We have a new baby boy in our lives : my sweet little nephew Hudson. Can’t wait to meet him.

    * I saw this recipe for soft pretzels on this blog and we tried them today. YUM. If you are a pretzel kind of girl, you should make them.

    * I don’t have an iphone. I know, gasp.  Truth be told, I am about the worst phone answerer in the world and so a fancy phone seems mildly unnecessary. But the more I think about it, the more I think it would be oh so handy.  Email on the run, entertain kiddos in a pinch, and this post may have tipped me over the edge with the realization that I would have a pretty good camera with me most of the time and I wouldn’t have to lug around my big one. Are you an iphone fan? Any thoughts?

    Am I boring you yet? Don’t worry, if we were chatting in real life I would let you talk too.

    One more thing :

    I have the itch for a new project. A master bath makeover? Something clever to cover the walls in the mudroom? Sprucing up the boy’s room? Paint the floors in the kitchen? Do you ever get the way : just itching to do something creative with your house?  I’ve got the bug. Good thing we have a busy next couple of weeks or else this house would be turned upside down. I’ll let you know where this energy gets focused and what room gets the makeover.

    Thanks a bunch for hanging out with me! It was fun :

    97 thoughts on “let’s chat”

    1. I just found your blog this Fall and I love it. I already feel like you are one of my friends. Maybe one day if I get to Seattle (and I hope so) we could have a cup of coffee and just chat. In the meantime I look forward to reading your blog. Thanks!

    2. I love this post! It’s really funny how you feel like you really know someone when you read their blog. I’m guess the Bainbridge picture wasn’t taken recently. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen blue skies like that in the PNW.

      So, if we were sipping hot cocoa (which is more appropriate than lemonade on a day like today) I’d tell you about my blogs. My newest blog is I thought you might like it, since you started talking about Mrs. Piggle Wiggle. I’d also invite you to my home blog. Hope you’ll stop by!


    3. We just got home from the beach and the two books I read while we were there were Peace Like a River and The Help! Loved them both! It looks like I’ll have to give Water for Elephants a try. Have you read A Gospel Primer by Milton Vincent? I recently finished it and loved it- so encouraging!

    4. Thanks for chatting :) I am wondering about your camera since you mentioned in commenting that if you had an iphone you wouldn’t always have to lug your big camera around. That is my dilema with a bigger camera, do you mind lugging it around so you can take pictures? I have had a Cannon point and shoot, and it was great, but no longer working properly. Several of my siblings recently upgraded to an entry level fancier camera, whichI think, take much better pictures and I am tempted to do the same. My husband was questioning whether I’d always want to lug it around? So since you have one, what are your thoughts? Do you find you don’t want to bring it cause it’s cumbersome, thus missing picture opportunities? Or is it not that big of a deal, and the better picture quality etc. are worth it. You obviously take a lot of pictures, more than I probably would, as mine would just be to capture life, not for a blog or anything.

    5. Read the Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins, The Help, and The Outlanders by Diana Galbaldon (there’s a lot of them). Or better yet, get the audio books so you can multitask.

      As I type this on my iPhone I have mixed emotions. I can text, email, surf the net, take pictures and email them to my mom instantly…. But as a “phone” it lacks a lot. Poor coverage, dropped calls, hard to dial when driving and so on. Is that off set by having access to gas or map quest instantly…. Not sure. And it’s priced at double a regular phone monthly cost as well. Try to borrow one first and see what you think…I probably would not get one again, but it does sone really neat stuff.

    6. i just asked friends on facebook for a good book recommend, one that was repeated was the forgotten garden so i just started it. some of my favorites are the glass castle, these is my words, and still alice (so good!!)
      my whole family were getting iphones so although i am not a phone person at all ( i get everyone’s handme downs and don’t mind) i didn’t want to be left out. i LOVE IT! it is so nice to have for so many things. i will admit i have been a little obsessive with it, surfing facebook and pinterest while riding in the car, as the passenger of course!

    7. The Help is great! You might enjoy, The Glass Castle. Very dysfunctional family with an interesting perspective from a daughter’s point of view.

      Seriously, you must feel stalked sometimes putting yourself out there, but for people like me who do so enjoy our cups of coffee while entering a design blog, or family blog, or faith-filled blog, or artsy or whatever…and you kind of combine them all, it is a treat. So once again, I was raised near Spokane with many family still on the coast. My grandmother and one aunt used to live on Bainbridge…oh the memories of that gorgeous place. Now the aunt lives across the Narrows Bridge…that rather interesting tower house beside the bridge…yup. I’m certain that broke a few architectural rules for the area, but they didn’t build it.

      Anyhoo, thanks for letting us peak into your life, and thanks for making ours brighter! -And thanks for my dose of the gorgeous Northwest as I’m no longer in that area.

    8. Love it! Thanks for chatting with me. I’m a social dork and it’s fun to have time with you by the pool without having to worry about what we’d talk about! LOL I love your blog and get all excited when I see a new post. Love your style, writing voice, heart for God. Everything!

    9. I always love catching up with an old friend, and blogging does feel like that. I’m excited to see what updates/renovations you make! I’ll be doing a lot of those too soon enough! We finally have a house here in Washington. :)

    10. I have an iphone and we have a love -hate relationship. I love all of the apps: ones for keeping appointments, ones for entertaining a 3 year old in public, and even the ones that help me make sure the picture I hung in the hallway is level! (YES, it really works!) But I don’t like how needy it is. It is constantly reminding me of something or notifying me of everything else. You can turn them all off, but then what is the point of having it. Anyway- just sharing my thoughts on the matter.
      I wanted to say thank you for your blog! I like you a lot! ;) I am a new follower and so far so GREAT! I like how you share all of your tutorials and you have a great sense of style.
      PS- Great CHAT! Have a great rest of the week!

    11. Dear Emily,
      I am also a new friend and visitor to your lovely blog. You write beautifully, in a conversational way, that draws many people to you, I’m sure. I’ve been a design blogger for about a year and I’ve grown to love it as well. What started out as almost a chore, has become a part of my life that serves as a great outlet and lets friends, old and new, understand my personal style, values and aspirations.

      I’m happy that you have the wonderful freedom, as a designer, to be there for your boys when they need you. It’s incredibly important, especially as a single mother, as I was for years.

      Now, with freedom in mind, did you know you can write an entire blog post, add photos, save a draft, preview your work, all on an iPhone? You can of course reply to lengthy comments like this, take pictures, video and just about everything else you can imagine, except make pretzels! Run, don’t walk, to your nearest dealer!

      I haven’t read any books recently worth mentioning…besides “the Help” and “water for Elephants”. I used to love reading my two kids Amelia Bedelia books. if you haven’t read any of them yet, they’re great!

      Well, that’s all for now. I don’t want to wear out my welcome!
      Until next time,
      The Treasured Home

    12. Oh sweet Emily,
      What a perfect day for a chat. It has been storming all afternoon. May 10th I fell off of a ladder and broke my back. Put on bedrest after I attended my daughter’s destination wedding at the lake and I am still here after 2 months. Having read your blog for awhile, you and all the blogs I read have become sorta my social outlet these days. Being on pain medication and laying flat makes most projects difficult. Reading some, but find that I often doze off!
      I need to thank you for the free fonts you share from time to time. I love your favorite font list.
      I have watched the bachelorette this season for the reason above. Lots of TV and Netflix for me. Human nature never ceases to amaze me. Bentley really did not speak well for the male race. I certainly know how blessed I am to have a wonderful caring husband for 30 years! He has been such support thru these trying months. Always helpful and never complains about things I need him to do for me. It has been such a testimony to my adult children (girls, 29 and twins girls 24) of what I feel a good marriage involves; not perfect of course, but good with God at the center. The accident has brought us closer together (I thought we already were).
      I am a lake girl! Loved that you visited an island. We have had a lake house since my oldest was 3. In my girls early years we would move to the lake for the whole summer. They even went to summer camp from there. It was so wholesome for them and allowed my priorities to always be correct. It is amazing the conversation you can have floating. We played lots of board games and the girls with their cousins or other guests did a whole lot of pretend play outside. The sky from the dock at night is magnificent. This city girl never knew how many stars I was missing for the lights of the city. We would often lay on our backs and watch for shooting stars and saw at least one most every night. The kids would catch fireflies in jars with air holes and that would be their night light. After all were asleep I would release them. Each day during the heat of the day we would have rest period. You did not have to sleep but you must be quiet and stay on your bed. This was a much needed break for me and when I usually did pleasure reading as I had to get on my bed also. All my girls would read or play with some type of figurine or maybe draw. To this day each of them like to read and I felt it good for me to model pleasure reading to them. At the lake it is wonderful the activites you can come up with when you use your mind to pretend and are able to block out much of the world’s noise that translated into business for us.
      Next to us at the lake is an old white clapboard church which has not been used since the 1920’s. It is still maintained by a family who has many of their family members in the small cemetary there. My girls preached many a sermons and conducted weddings umpteen times in that little chapel on the lake. In fact, one of the twin’s (who married this May) husband proposed to her in the chapel. We were his legs to fill the chapel with candles and flowers; just magical!
      Emily, you and I have exchanged email once before but I need you to know that your love of God shines thru. Not to long after my accident I was reading your blog and you shared a U tube video of the Seed Family worship singing Psalms 55:22. It was just what I needed to hear. I was weary and needed to be reminded that He would sustain me! Having purchased those last fall for me and my daughter that has 1 year old twins (she was raised on Psalty the singing songbook)I somehow forgot that I need those words as much as my precious grandsons do! Of note, you did a Christmas card of them for me. They are Jack Henry and Harrison and were sitting in a galvanized tub. Anyway, I am rambling but just wanted you to know that I admire you. I wish I was as crafty as you and I love the balance you so tenderly and fervently try to keep with God, your family and your design business/blog.
      Hum, I have gone on way to long! I was just about to launch into pro and cons of iphone and how no shopping for me since we just paid for a wedding in May, but I think enough!
      Thank you again for your blog. It is a blessing to me.
      I would like to leave with a verse my daughter Grace, who is in vet school several hours away, sent to me in a card today. it is Isaiah 43:18-19. It says-
      18 “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.
      19 See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
      I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.

      She then so sweetly said; “See Mom ,He is making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland! I know this time is hard and you feel lost/confused as to the course to take.” She went on to say, “Rest assured that even in the deepes,t darkest, most painful days He is with you making a new way.” Such a precious child of mine!
      Stand fast with your children, train them up and you will reap the fruit as I did today.

    13. Oh, Emily you have to get an iphone. I just love mine!! It keeps you updated even when you are not home. I also like the Bachelor/ Bachelorette. Another favorite of mine is Bethenny Ever After. Can’t wait to watch the new episodes in the fall. I loved reading The Help. I am also loving a recipe book by Gwyneth Paltrow called my father’s daughter . Yummy recipes!! I love her blog called Goop. Thanks for intro me to Mrs. Piggle Wiggle. Also, thanks for your wonderful blog. You inspire me daily!!!

    14. Hi Emily! I almost do feel like I know ya! Had to comment about the iPhone, love, love, love mine – don’t know what I’d do without it, keeps my calendar, contacts, email, fav blogs, Facebook, games for the kids [including math flash cards which I consider summer school!]…..If you want a picture into my life, just look at my iPhone, it’s all there – the good, the bad and the ugly!

      Heading up to Seattle this weekend – where should I shop?????? Good vintage/home dec shops…would love to know your favs!

    15. Absolutely true – I was planning on my next post being about blogs I am really enjoying right now, the ones that give a slice of life as well as the decorating side of things – My top three were You, Meg and Ashley. Do you know Becky over at Farmgirl Paints, another favorite? I am not familiar with Angie, but I look forward to meeting her as well! Thanks for such a great place to visit and have a virtual cup of coffee!

      As far as the iphone, so did not think that I needed it and my husband pushed me towards it. Love IT!!! Don’t know how I did it without it, the camera is so great on the go, Love Instagram, and a great use of time when you are waiting for things. Highly recommend it even if you still don’t answer calls!

      Have a great night,

    16. Your blog is definitely one of my top 5 favorites, if not my number 1…really! So, I love the conversational and laid back feel. You make projects seem more approachable and I really hear your heart in your posts and I love that!
      The most embarrassing thing about referencing blog authors is when I’m talking to my husband who has no clue who ‘Emily’ (or any other blogger for that matter) is and there I am rambling on and on about something you said or a project you did. So funny!

    17. Emily, I felt like I just had the best morning with a friend. Please continue using this type of blog, it truly touches my heart. Have you read “Winter Garden” by Kristin Hannah? It is one I would suggest you try, it was hard for me to start and then I didn’t want it to end. She writes so well.

    18. I loved this post! I think I’ll do one like it soon. Ok…

      You *need* an iPhone. I am completely addicted to mine. The ability to check email, blogs, etc. on the go is so helpful. Especially in those moments when you’re stuck in the pediatrician’s office for half an hour waiting in that tiny room, or when little ones want to play outside and you just want to check your email without dragging your laptop to the porch. It’s great for on-the-go entertainment for kids. I carry mine in my pocket sometimes from room to room when I’m cleaning, playing Pandora radio.

      Then, there’s the camera. Seriously. I’m super picky about photos, and the new iPhone takes great shots {for a phone}. Plus, you can edit and upload them directly on the phone. It makes sharing a lot easier and less time consuming. Plus you get that many more great pictures and videos of your family!

      Love the fonts you picked out – as usual. :)

      My mom used to read Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle to us as kids. Thanks for reminding me of it! I need to pick up that series for my little one when she’s a little older!

    19. *I totally feel like I’m friends with all the bloggers I visit regularly…including you! My husband laughs at me when I reference something I read on a blog as if it was from a person I really know. I also talk to the TV as if I can be heard. There’s a lot of “uh-huh” and “uh-uh”.
      *Have you read the Something Borrowed series of books? I’m on my third, the 2nd in the series because I went out of order ~ whoops! Anyway, they’re simple and easy reads. I absolutely loved The Help and cannot wait to see the movie…I only hope it’s a moving as the book was.
      *iPhone is GREAT! I just have the 3GS but I love it. I’m holding out for a replacement until the 5 is released. It’s hard though because the hubs has the 4 and it’s so much faster than mine with much better image quality. You should get one so you can join Instagram and post iphone photos and we can all follow you there too!!

      Love all your posts and thanks for being our “friend”!

    20. My husband turned me into an iphone user… I was more than hesitant! But I love it… I blog stalk, email, facebook, pinterest, text and everything on it!!! I am not a phone talker either, and I don’t really talk on it at all, ha!!! I have used it as my sole camera now for a while… I even have a free photo editing app on my phone that I love!!! The pictures are good, not as great or crisp as yours are but still good! Hope that helps!!!

      Always – Abbey

    21. I’m fairly new to your site, and I’m enjoying every post. I love to read and recently read two great books that you might enjoy. (As an aside, I live in the American South. In other words, I’m a Southerner, and I love Southern Lit. So take my recommendations with that in mind.) I read Pat Conroy’s My Reading Life while at the beach last month, and oh boy, it was great. Every chapter stands alone essentially, and each one covers a work of literature that has influenced him as a writer. Book lists interest me generally, but I also loved hearing him describe them and their influence on him as a writer.

      The other book I read was Silas House’s Clay’s Quilt, which I just finished a few nights ago. It’s a wonderful story of redemption, set in the Appalachian mountains of Kentucky. I read A Parchment of Leaves by him several years ago and loved it too.

      Thanks for sharing your life, creativity and love for your family with us. You’re a gem.


    22. Funny! I always talk about you with my husband or girlfriends as if we talk everyday. “Emily said . . .” or “Emily thinks . . .” I guess it’s not that far-fetched since we were friends in college. :) I, too, have been obsessed with fonts recently and can’t wait to get an Iphone. I do have a smartphone already, and it does make life so convenient. Although, I sometimes feel TOO dependent on my phone. We were in Canada last week and I didn’t know how to function without my email and internet accessible at all times. I’ve been wanting to read The Help, so you’ve convinced me to pick up a copy. I’m starting a master bath re-model. Fun but overwhelming . . . the growing price tag on the project is a little daunting too.
      Glad to hear your summer is going well! I love the photo documentation of it all. :)

    23. I LOVE fonts, too! Thanks for sharing some of your sources for free fonts!
      I LOVE my iphone…for all of the reasons you mentioned. I would suggest getting one.

      1. I also have a bunch of home projects on my mind. I was an interior designer before I decided to be a stay at home mommy and miss the creative process (I guess I still AM an interior designer, just not practicing). Good thing we have a house that needs a lot of work! Just need to find the time and energy to do it…I just posted about a couple of bedroom makeovers I have planned!

    24. I definitely feel like I am friends with bloggers I read regularly, especially those that share about their personal lives. I have a book recommendation for you: Heaven is for Real. I LOVED it. My husband hates reading, and he loved it too. (Plus he loved that it is only 160 pages.) I loved The Help, and I can’t wait for the movie! I read a lot of Francine Rivers, a Christian author you might like.

      PS. You should get an iPhone. I have 1500 photos on mine, and I’m addicted to Instagram and Hipstamatic!

    25. Love this post! My oldest is 7 and he’s favorite game is also angry birds. And we recently discovered Piggle Wiggle audio cds at the library (for long drive trips) and my kids love them!

    26. I am not one for a fancy phone. I always had my husbands old ones. He bought me the i phone and I have to say i am in love. I use the camera a lot.(especially now that I am doing twitter via instagram) and I love knowing I can get timely emails away from my desk.

    27. I read Peace Like a River and The Help and loved them both…. so I think you might also love Unbroken. AMAZING story. You won’t regret it. Bloodroot is also really good – similar to peace like a River. And in between books, I too am hooked on the bachelor. Poor Ashley. . . .

    28. I recently read a memoir, The Glass Castle by Jeannette Wells. It was fantastic and I could hardly put it down! Highly recommend it.
      Also, I have been knee deep in projects lately….painting pretty much any furniture I can get a hold of. Quick question (if you have time)….what color of white would you recommend using? I just bought the generic white off the shelf and it seems a little too bright for the shabby chic old look I’m going for. If you have any ideas, I would greatly appreciate them!

    29. i’m so addicted to downloading fonts too!! i haven’t used those sites yet though… sometimes my fonts show up under different names in microsoft word… have you had that problem?! it’s quite bizarre!
      P.S. you prob won’t regret getting an iphone! smart phones are awesome for uploading pictures and even blog posts on the go! i have a full time job (probation officer), a 1 hour commute each way, i do murals on the side, and i am working on furniture/painting projects at home… i would be lost without my blackberry! and i’m upgrading to a “smarter” phone {with angry birds} soon too!

    30. Hi Emily, thanks for chatting–one of my favorite things to do over coffee! I may or may not say things like, “well, Emily has these great paint colors in her house” or, “yah, I got that idea from Emily” as if we were BFF’s. My husband goes, “who is Emily again? Am I supposed to know her?” Thank you for your posts.
      I have to, have to recommend two books to you by Marissa de Los Santos. They are both SO GREAT. I could not put them down and the best part is the second one picks up where the first one leaves off. Love Walked In is the first and Belong to Me is the second. The titles make them sound a bit cheesy, but they are absolutely wonderful. They are funny, smartly written, sad, romantic, and most of all remind you of how important friendships are between women. Oh, absolutely great summer reads!

    31. Yes! I do feel like I know you and would love to have you stop by for coffee… in fact, if you are ever in the DC area… :)
      I just finished reading The Help and about 20 pages from wrapping up Water For Elephants. I’ll check out Peace Like a River next on your recommendation!
      May I suggest Beneath a Marble Sky for you? It’s beautiful! Also Jodi Picoult’s House Rules.
      Thanks for your generous spirit!

    32. I love that you write as if we’re all friends in real life :) I think that is what defines some of my favorite blogs – they are authentic, casual, and I don’t feel like I have to compare myself or live up to a standard that they’re setting. And it’s even better if I think I would actually break out of my introvert shell & approach the writer at a blog conference because I just “feel” like they would be nice to me!

      – LOVE Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle! That brought back fun memories :)
      – Confession: Equally obsessed with fonts. I get a “font of the day” email. Not kidding.
      – Can’t handle the drama on this season of the Bachelorette, but I can’t turn it off!
      – I also do not own an iPhone, but would in fact purchase one simply for the fact that I could use Instagram. Amen. App jealousy.

    33. Oh i forgot, I just read The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks, you must check it out! I also got a good laugh out of Tina Fey’s Bossypants, I’m a big 30 Rock fan!


    34. I feel the same way about bloggers I read!

      One thing I do to make myself feel better about watching The Bachelor/ette is making fun of it with friends and reading Knox McCoy’s hilarious recaps. The rumors I’ve heard about who they’ll cast next makes me think I won’t be watching much longer.

      I’m always good for book recommendations! Kate Morton’s The Distant Hours is phenomenal and richly written. Interesting YA lit: Matched (Condie) and Across the Universe (Revis). An interesting chef memoir: Blood, Bones, and Butter (Hamilton).

    35. Oh boy Emily, i would love to chat! After you mentioned The Help, I picked it up. Was dreading it because it had so many pages and I didn’t think I could dedicate the time to it. I read it in two days. No cooking, no cleaning was going to be done in my house until I finished it! I’m so glad I did, thanks for recommending it. My local friends that have read it plan to go out for drinks and then see the movie when it launches. (Maybe a matinee since school will already be in session for us!)

      I checked out Meg’s blog . . . she inspires me to blog, just because! I’m not particularly crafty, but I do have tons of pins on Pinterest that I would love to do someday. I’ve been thinking about blogging but wonder why I feel the need to publish my life on the web. After all, I’m not selling anything and don’t have any projects to share. From reading a few posts, it looks like Meg blogs, just because. I have a terrible memory, I don’t scrapbook, so I am worried that the every day pleasures of life will slip by. I guess that is reason alone to blog. What do you think?

      I do love my iphone. Because I don’t have a good memory, I take pictures of everything. My kids, beautiful sunsets, receipts, things I want to remember. It really is a family pleasure to go through and look at the photos and videos that I’ve taken.

      I am a font nut too! I get several newsletters from the font websites, I’m such a geek!

      I really do enjoy your posts. You are someone I would love to hang out with. You remind me of one of my friends, and I passed along your site to her. You are so gracious, kind and I love your style! Our of all of the blogger emails that I get, your and the House of Smiths are those that I read first!

      Take care, let’s chat again soon!

      Lesley in Georgia

    36. Emily,
      SO glad you feel like we’re friends because I do too and that makes it much less awkward :) I always refer to you to my husband and he so politely reminds me that we’ve never in fact met and are not “real” friends. Sometimes guys just don’t understand!
      A novel recommendation for you…have you read Sarah’s Key? It is fabulous, but I will warn you that since you have children it could be quite emotional to read. I still think it’s worth it, the story is so captivating.
      As for the Bachelor…I’m ashamed to admit that I too have been hooked. I don’t like to talk about it but I’m glad that you don’t judge me :) There’s just something about it that sucks you in!
      Thanks for sharing your life with us! My project today is wrapping a monogram letter in jute twine and then embellishing with rolled fabric flowers. I’m so excited….we have so many weddings coming up this fall and it will make a perfect gift!

    37. So then it doesn’t bug you when I refer to you as “my friend Emily” when I’m telling others about how awesome you are? Wink Wink. I am the only adult in my family (10 adults) who doesn’t have an iPhone. I long for one. I pine for one. Alas, it is not to be. But if you need any more evidence of the photographic possibilities of the iPhone, check out my photographer brother’s website of AMAZING pics all taken with his iPhone and a few photo editing apps. Pretty mind blowing for a phone.

    38. Hi Emily! I have loved your blog for ages but I think this is the first comment I’ve left! You definitely inspire me and I love reading your posts! I recently finished the book Room by Emma Donahue. It’s kind of unusual and hard to get into, but ends up being pretty good. I was a 2nd grade teacher and we read Mrs. Piggle Wiggle every year in my class- the kids love her, but I’m like you and wished her ideas worked for them :)
      Have a great day!

    39. I so enjoy reading your blog! I’ve only recently started following it, but yup, once I follow someone long enough I feel like we’ve been friends forever. :) You definitely write a friendly blog, and I love it!
      And I absolutely love fonts, too, and have downloaded so many! So thanks for the links!! :) :)

    40. Hi Emily!
      I also feel like I know you and your family (and Holly Mathis) I envision us going to Round Top together (my fav as well). I recently pulled a clipping from a magazine, “what books are worth staying up late for” on that list The Help, Freedom, and The Road. So far, I have only gotten to the help which was incredible so I can’t personally say anything about the others! Real Simple has a book club : that I intend to check out to see what other good reads are out there!
      Thanks for the chat!

    41. haha. I totally feel as if I know you just from reading your blog! I say the same things! I read on Emily’s blog the other day..haha. Very cute post!

    42. When I read my favorite blogs, yours included, I always feel like I am catching up with friends. I love the mix of projects and family tidbits. Just like if we were neighbors I’d show you how I re-styled and updated my porch and what my grandkids are doing and you’d share what you’ve been crafting and funny things your kids said.
      Since I don’t have small children at home to keep me up to date on the latest fads I look at the painting and think it looks like a rooster. My first thought was cardinal but then I see the thing on top of the head and think ‘comb’ like a rooster has.
      I get sucked into every bachelor/ bachelorette season. You’re are not alone. The drama is ridiculous but after a busy day who doesn’t enjoy mindless entertainment?
      LOVE my i-phone. DO IT!

    43. Another Mrs Piggle Wiggle fan! I recently read my childhood copy with my oldest (8) and we checked a few more out of the library last week.
      One of my all time favorite books (I’ve read it multiple times) is The Giant’s House by Elizabeth McCracken.

    44. Water for Elephants and The Help are so great, aren’t they? It’s rare that books that good come along, I think. A few others I love are The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society – wierd title, but it is awesome. The characters are wonderful. Also Bel Canto by Ann Patchett. It’s a few years old now, but one of my all time favorites.

      I’m also finishing up the Hunger Games trilogy. It’s technically young adult, but they are fun and move quickly and great for summer.

      Let us know what you read next!

    45. You are on my top list of blogs right there with Meg and Ashley Ann :) I just got an iPhone for the first time a week ago, felt like the last one. It is really nice to have the internet on the go. But it is my goal to not let it take over my life–I don’t want to be the mom at the park that is missing out on their kids because there is so much to do on their phone. It is so easy to fall into that with so much access and so little time, but as I said it’s a goal. I book that I have recently finished and loved it a “teen” series called Hunger Games–really different from anything I would usually choose, but really good. I also loved The Help and Water for Elephants, but if you do check out Hunger Games and like it check out a similar excellent book called Divergent. Enjoy!!

    46. You know we are technically close enough to really have coffee. Too creepy? Sorry.

      Iphones are overrated. Get a Droid they can do everything that an iphone can, but cheaper. ;) (I am going to stand back and wait for the flaming to commence).

      I love B.I!! I live in Poulsbo. (See totally a coffee date in the making–you could schelp the kiddos on the ferry and we could have scones and ignore them tearing up my house).

      I just discovered you and I check your blog daily! I ordered the “I can not do it all” print and I am sorta addicted to fonts now. I can’t get them to install on my word program though.

        1. Thanks! I will try it again! I have a slight obsession with Harry Potter and I need to install a font to make my “Platform 9 3/4” sign. :) And don’t think I didn’t notice how you carefully avoided our coffee date topic. LOL

    47. I have an iphone and I love it, but I try to keep my kids from playing games on it. My husband gets so mad when he catches them playing “Angry Birds”. :) Also, I have a couple of book recommendations…”The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak,(my all time favorite book ever)and “Sweeping up Glass” by Carolyn D. Wall, I just finished that one yesterday and it was really good, too.

    48. I feel the same way about my favorite blogs, of which yours is one! I am so in love with your printables, am obsessed with fonts too, and have the same bachelorette guilty pleasure! We would be great friends, I’m sure :)

    49. Hey Emily, Yes – I too act like I personally know the authors of all of the blogs I read. It is a little stalker-ish though when you realize you “know” someone pretty well and they have no clue who you are! Ha ha!

      I LOVE the bird painting. I would totally hang that in my house. Mind if I print it off?

      I do love my iPhone. I didn’t think I needed it either. But then I got it just because it was a better deal than the regular phone and I have to say… I don’t know if I could live without it now. I actually have an Android, the Droid 2, and I use the navigation system, the internet, and the email apps ALL the time. The Android has fewer app options than the actual iPhones, but more of the Android apps are free, whereas you have to buy apps for the iPhone.

      Hey thanks for chatting Emily! Talk to ya soon! :)

    50. I’m glad to know you feel that way about blogs you visit ofter because I feel that way about you! I loved the chat. I just finished The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon and would highly recommend it. I just converted from an Android to an iPhone and i LOVE it. There is no beating the camera on that little guy. You should do it.
      BTW, I”ve looked at your backyard post at least 15 times today… that’s since 9am. A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.

    51. Mrs. Piggle Wiggle is an all time fave of mine AND my kids. I loved it as a kid and now they too L.O.V.E.!!

      I just finished reading ‘The Last Sin Eater’ by Francine Rivers – GOOD read {an older one I think but, new to me} and so interesting.

      I am not much of a phone girl either – who needs to answer the phone while grocery shopping, etc. with three kids?? I like to BE WITH my kids when I am with my kids – know what I mean??

    52. Haha, I totally feel like I “know” bloggers. Every time I mention what so-and-so did for such-and-such, my husband has to try really hard not to roll his eyes. Oh, and I have an iPhone and I totally recommend it. I’m still a student and don’t have kids, but the most important thing for me is the calendar. My job at the university involves a lot of meetings during my regularly scheduled hours and often during other hours. Keeping all my appointments, classes, jobs etc. is a pain in the butt to keep straight. I had Outlook(Entourage) at work with my schedule, but now that I have the iPhone I can sync them together and update from the phone or the computer. I’m sure that with your kids it would be super handy for keeping everyone’s schedules straight. I also really like keeping my grocery lists, homework assignments, ideas, etc. in the “notes” part- that way my million post-its don’t get lost. I could go on and on, but you get the idea :) I think it’s one of those things that if you actually use it, it’s worth it. But if you really don’t utilize it then it’s not worth the money :)

    53. Emily, I think it’s posts like this that make it so fun to keep coming back. Definitely fun to “chat” with someone you don’t know but feel like you do. Oh, and anything by Jane Austen is always a good read/re-read. Timeless and funny!

    54. I’m a new visitor to your blog and loved learning more about you. Also, I adored Mrs. Piggle Wiggle when I was younger, and Peace Like a River is an excellent book. I’ve just started The Fountainhead…it seemed like a cultural requirement, and I’m enjoying it so far!

    55. OOoh, yes, yes, and resounding yes. Figuring out which room to get to next in our rental home. Not sure how long we’ll be here, but I am still decorating away. Just because it’s a rental doesn’t mean it can’t be pretty. :)

      I have noticed I really run the gamut on my DVR from smutty to wonderful on my DVR. I have loads of Three’s Company reruns on there – the most hilarious show ever made. I have the wonderful Duggars who inspire me. And then….Mob Wives. Total trash tv, but it’s like a train wreck and I just can’t look away. Or apparently stop DVR’ing it, either.

    56. my guilty pleasure is watching bachelorette/bachelor too… my boyfriend (long distance) and I chat or skype and watch it together and analyze everything. We also ask each other what we would do if we were on there. We also have decided that we should do som e “bachelor” dates…. you know, crazy extravagent.

      I read The Help and loved it. I stayed up till 2am to finish it because I HAD to know what happened.

      Lately I’ve been on a cleaning and organizing spree… I rent a small basement apartment and I’m bursting at the seams with too much stuff… it’s making me want to get my own place soon. Then I can tackle all those home decorating projects I dream of!

      1. How fun would some of those dates be?!! Except having wedding photos done. That was lame. But a cool adverntury type of date would be amazing.

    57. The last part is so funny because I feel like that exactly right now! My youngest is teething and has been clingy lately, so I have been soothing him by walking around the house and making mental lists of all the updates and projects I want to accomplish! So glad to hear I’m not the only one who gets the itch!

    58. Love my iphone4. Couldn’t live without it! Great books: Same Kind of Different As Me, The Art of Racing in The Rain. The Help, Please Look After Mom. All excellent summer reads! You have a beautiful family. I can’t wait to see what room you will makeover next. You are a classy gal with excellent taste!

    59. I feel like we are friends or would be if I ever met you. I grew up in Washington and not far from Bainbridge Island. I read Mrs. Piggle Wiggle as a kid. Currently haven’t had time to read so no book suggestions. Thanks for talking to us. I don’t have any new nephews but am going to have a new niece here in a couple of days. We are really excited. Have a great day.

    60. i thought the iphone was all hype. but it has changed my life. you will have a salvation experience if you get one. no…well kind of.

      and also that poster. uhhhmazing. made me laugh.

    61. We LOVE Mrs. Piggle Wiggle!!!!!! Go to and they have 13 episodes of a show called Mrs. Piggle Wiggle. I once attempted homeschooling my four boys and used Sonlight curriculum. If you go to their site, they have WONDERFUL books listed that are grade appropriate. Another favorite book you must read to them is “The Year of Miss Agnes.” Oh and your boys would love “Homer Price.” Anyway, LOVE your blog! Thanks for letting me in to see a little glimpse of your life! ~Emily

    62. I love your blog too and strangely feel like I know you! I have a droid and it works great in a pinch, I too didn’t think it was necessary but it is nice to have. We are constantly working on projects and once they are “complete” I start to itch for another. No novels here, I’ve been checking out mass amounts of home decor books from the Library. I do have “The Help” and “Jesus Speaks” on my list so I best get going. Thanks for sharing and LOVE your home.

    63. Emily! This is how I totally feel about you and your blog and then sometimes I have to remember that you have NO earthly idea WHO I could possibly be, and then I get a tad sad, and then totally happy again, because you are a sister-in-Christ and I think we might just possibly have the best craft section in Heaven possible! Corny, I know! There are several reasons that I love you as a blog friend… 1)I’m secretly jealous that you go to Mars Hill and live in Seattle…while I would never live there, because I love SC sunshine WAY too much, my SIL just moved from Seattle, Redmond actually, as a Worship leader for a church, and I loved visiting and I can vicariously visit there through you 2)you have 6 kids and I have one, but you make having 6 look amazingly easy 3)the obvious…you love design and we share that and while I don’t think I am anywhere near as good at it, I still love it and love trying to do new things/sew stuff/update my own blog. 4)Your blog inspired me to actually post more frequently on my own. I’m new at it, but it’s a great outlet for fun, even when you don’t feel like anyone on the planet cares if you made something! 5)I think it is awesome that you love the bachelor/bachelorette and I do the same at trying to fold laundry while it is on to justify my time spent savoring the nutty craziness. I actually dreamed that I wrote Emily a letter telling her that I would be her true friend and not tell the tabloids anything if she confided it me…then I pointed her to Jesus and she felt better. LOL! Well, I enjoyed our coffee! Let’s chat again later!

    64. Don’t get an iphone! Get android! Not sure what plan you’re on (we have sprint) but the Evo 4G( is really good as is the Nexxus S ( A new version of the Evo came out – Evo 3D but I think most people still like the original – who needs 3D options on a phone???

      I love reading your blog. I read Water for Elephants recently. Several friends and family have been recommending 1000 Gifts by Ann Voscamp, have you read that? I also started reading the Hunger games series, which are amazing so far!

    65. iPhones are oh so handy! I use mine so much for so many different things. The different apps are so nice for helping stay organized. I love the camera feature and the different editing apps. I also greatly appreciate the fact that I have my music right there and when I hear a song I like on the radio, I have the option to purchase it then and there instead of trying to remember it when I get home! Music is HUGE in our household! I’ve talked to a lot of people about the pros and cons of iPhones vs droids etc…and my biggest reason I tell them for loving my iPhone is that it always works. I’ve never found something I wanted it to do that it couldn’t(but then….I’m not that tech savvy…).My sister is ALWAYS letting my nephew watch sesame street or bob the builder when we are out shopping and he loves it…definitely great for kiddo entertainment! :) The other great thing is that Apple stands behind their products well. Sorry to rave on about the phone! :) Thanks for working so hard to put together a great blog!

    66. Would love to hear what book you read next. I just finished Like Water for Elephants and now I have my hubby reading it. I too am always on the lookout for good books. Thanks for chatting, loved it.

    67. I’ve been on a big reading kick this summer. When my 8 month old twins go down for a nap, I am allowed 30 minutes to relax before doing projects around the house and I’m always reaching for a book lately! Right now, I’m reading Joy for Beginners by Erica Bauermeister. I am REALLY enjoying it right now! I would recommend it! I also just finished The Birth House by Ami McKay which was very good as well as Bastard Out of Carolina by Dorothy Allison. BOC is very sad and dark, though–definitely not a light summery read–but it is amazing.
      I am crazy jealous about your trip to the water!! I grew up in Alabama with beach trips at least once a summer, but through the course of life, I’ve only been once in the past 3 years. It hurts my heart and I am just desperate for a breath of salty air!!

    68. Loved it. I do have an iphone…and it’s great. Not a miracle worker, but still awesome. My favorite feature is instagram. I take pics of my kids and post them so my parents can see. Because I live overseas, I can’t text them, but let’s be honest, providing pictures of the kids within minutes of taking them is WAY better than a text! And how about you channel some of that energy in helping me make over a room in my house?? How bout it? :P

    69. I just found your blog via the Rambling Renovators, so I can honestly say I don’t feel like I know you yet, but I look forward to it :) If you liked The Help, you might also like The Book of Negroes (U.S. Title: Someone Knows My Name). I read it last year and it was my favorite of the year!

    70. Good morning, Emily. I TOTALLY feel that way when I read your blog. I sometimes feel a little silly when I write a long comment on blogs because I feel like I’m talking to someone who may or may not even read the comment (because all of you bloggers are so busy and get so many comments) and doesn’t even know me. But you are so talented and sweet, so it is easy to write as if I “know” you. Thanks for inviting us in for a chat. That was fun to read as I sit here with my coffee.:) You have a “friend” all the way over in Vermont!

    71. I loved the book Looking for Salvation at the Diary Queen. I have an i-phone. I was hesitant to get one, but I love it now. It is great for photos and even taking videos of the kids on the run. Can’t wait to see what room you makeover! :)

    72. That was a lovely little chat. I was answering all your questions (in my head). I have a sweet new nephew, Hudson, also. You should do this more often!

    73. Emily, I have an iphone and I love it! Although I must warn you–it, like the computer, can take you away from actual human interaction. My sister-in-law and I have been known to sit in the same room and play scrabble with each other…on our phones. But it is good for some quick entertainment for the kiddos–a game while we wait in line at the zoo, a Justin Beiber video to keep him awake in the car. Yes, my three-year-old is obsessed with Justin Beiber. As far as books go, I read The Help last summer in two days–couldn’t put it down. And I am trying to find time to read The Book Thief. I teach high school English and another teacher highly recommended it. Also , The Kite Runner. Thanks for chatting! Your blog is truly inspiring! My house is now covered with crafting supplies to try all the tutorials! Have a great day!

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