Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Top 5 Posts of 2015

I cannot believe we are at the end of another year already!! 
2015 is going to come and go and a new year will be upon us! How did that happen so quickly??

I say this every year, but it seems feels like every year goes by quicker than the one before. I mean really, it seems like I blinked and we hit December...and now it will be January 2016?! Wow!

I wanted to do a review of the top most viewed posts of 2015. This is a bit weird for me because I have never done this before...but I have seen other bloggers do this this week and wanted to give it a try. It's neat to look back and see some of the things we accomplished and did together as a family this year.

So here it goes...

#1 Buffet Table/Sideboard

This one comes as no surprise to was my most viewed post of the year with 629 views! I didn't even realize how many people have read this particular post until I was gathering my list and jotting down the top viewed blog post of the year. This one wins by far! To read the post about it, go here.

#2. Family Room- Before and Afters
This one was fun to look back on because the room looks different now then it did when this post was first published! Oddly enough, this post was also written almost one year ago (at the end of January 2015).

#3 DIY Granite Countertops- Just Paint It!!

And more than 6 months later...they are still holding strong!!

#4- Girls Room- Painted in Pink
This was a fun post to look back on because you can see the difference in how the room looked when we bought the house and how it looks now. We have also recently changed out the bright blue fan for a classic white one AND added a faux fireplace to the one wall where the shelf use to hang. 
This post almost tied with #3 with roughly 140 page views. 

#5- Master Bathroom Painted Vanity
We all love a good before and after, right? This one was pretty dramatic. Amazing what a little paint can do.

And there you have it- the top 5 most read posts of the year! Pretty neat to look back on and see what we were able to accomplish in a year with the new house. Looking forward to another year with more projects along the way!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Details of the Dollhouse

I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas!
We definitely did! We enjoyed spending time together reflecting on the year and talking to our girls about the true meaning of why we celebrate Christmas. Our oldest is very curious about a lot of things and loves to ask questions especially about what Christmas we love telling her about God's love and Jesus. It's fun to watch her light up with happiness knowing that He loves her so. 
We also have family visiting which means my next post won't be for another few days.

I wanted to share a few details about the doll house today.
Speaking of the doll house, our girls loved it! I made sure to not just take pictures of the doll house, but I also managed to take a short video of them opening the gift. They were so excited about it and days later, they still play with it! Hooray!

So the house dimensions were pretty basic...I had my hubby cut the wood for me but I pretty much took it from there. ;)
The house is about 2 feet wide and about 30 inches high which is perfect for the age range of our girls.

The first two floors house the family room and the kitchen. I also added a picket fence to the base to give it that real house feel. It turned out pretty well...although I did have to staple the fence pieces to the base because glue just wasn't cuttin' it. Even the strong stuff! 

The second floor has 2 bedrooms and a bathroom while the third floor has a master bedroom and playroom.
Even though these rooms each have a theme, none of the furniture is permanent so our girls have free-reign to move things around if they so choose. And they have chosen to do that every time they play...nothing like finding the play toilet in one of the bedrooms and the dining table in the family room. :)

The fireplace and kitchen were drawn and colored in. I almost purchased a fireplace for the family room along with some other pieces....almost. Doll house furniture and accessories can get pretty expensive (as you can imagine) and when you add everything up, there was no way I was going to buy all that. ;)

And speaking of the kitchen, here is Miss Olivia and her cat in the doll house kitchen:
The dining table was purchased at the Dollar Tree, for, you guessed it, $1!! Now that is a deal.

Next up is Olivia's room where we have purple floral wallpaper, some stickers, a bed, dresser, and a sweet dangling light fixture. 

The dresser and bed were also Dollar Tree purchases and were spray painted with some leftover paint.

The bathroom (only one in the house) is between the 2 bedrooms on the second floor.
For the toilet, happens to be one of our girl's favorite things to play with for some reason, I glued a floss container and shampoo cap together and wrapped it in twine...because, who doesn't love a twine wrapped toilet?! Adding the twine was really the only way I could get the two to stay together. 
For the sink, I glued some washers to the top of a toothpaste carrier and screwed in a small eye hook to act as the faucet. These were things we already had in the house so it cost nothing to make! Sometimes you got to get creative!

On to "the boy's room". In this room, we have a bed, desk, chair, and a fun patterned wallpaper. Ian, the pig, totally loves hanging out in his room with his cool red robot. ;)

The top floor is another bedroom for Olivia's parents. It's pretty simple with a bed, tall dresser, and a couple of pictures.

The other room on the top floor is the playroom...I added this fun pinwheel paper to the back and some other things to the room the girls already had like the red wagon and the pink trunk.

Overall, the decorating was kept simple with few permanent pieces in the doll house because I knew the girls would be moving things around at their own leisure. 
So that's the tour of the house! Thank you to those of you who have followed along. :) I really do appreciate all of my readers!!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Our Little Tree

In addition to our bigger Christmas tree,  we also added a much smaller version to our family room by the fireplace. I don't know what it is this year about small trees, but I have been reading a lot of blogs that are sporting them around their home. Maybe it's the simplicity of having one or just a decorating phase some people are going through?

We have had this little tree for about 3 or 4 years now and usually it sits outside on our front porch this time of year. But since we didn't put the bigger Christmas tree in our family room this year, I thought that putting our smaller tree by the fireplace would work out much better. And it has...we love it there...especially the girls. 

The tree is sitting in a plastic plant container we had in the garage and I just used some old fabric to wrap around it.

I would love to get a real Christmas tree in our family room one of these years, but we didn't do it this year. I'm sure it is a pain in the rear to care for and clean up, but we are willing to give it a try. Hopefully, next year we will have one! I bet the smell is amazing!

Our decorating has been pretty simple this year and I actually really love it that way. Plus, we know that it isn't all about the decorating of course, but celebrating the birth of Jesus this season. 

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Living Room- Green Walls


It is one of my favorite colors. 

Oddly enough, I have never had a green room in our home (if you don't count the one time I painted the girls bathroom green and then quickly repainted it a different color because it didn't look right).
I don't know why, but for me, green is a tough color to pick out. There are so many shades of green and it can be hard to narrow it down to just one right color.

 Our daughter admiring the tree :)
To come up with the color for this room, I knew we needed something that would work with the wood trim because we didn't want to paint over it. I also wanted a color that would work with the rest of our downstairs which is mostly light gray.

I started by buying two samples of Benjamin Moore colors (mixed at Lowe's) to test on the walls. One was Gray Mirage (a really beautiful color!) and the other was Vale Mist. I didn't like Vale Mist right off the bat and Gray Mirage was the color I loved at first swipe. 
But, I wasn't 100% sold on buying a new gallon of I looked through my stash of leftover paint/samples and mixed 5 different colors together in a left over gallon I had and came up with the color you see pictured here. 
No joke, the color is actually really, really close to Gray Mirage (the one I loved but didn't want to buy a gallon of). I couldn't believe it! I even asked my husband to look at the two colors up on the wall next to each other and see if he could spot the difference between the two. He couldn't even tell there was a difference! :)
It was then that I decided to just go for it and use that color for this space.

Now our living room walls are this nice shade of green. It almost has a greige undertone to it and in some lights looks like a greige but in direct sunlight it is pretty obvious that it has a green base.

The photo above is blurry but you can see how the green pairs well with the hallway color (which is BM's Gray Owl). 

I'm pretty smitten with the new color and am very happy it turned out like I pictured. 

And sorry for the quality of some of the photos...I took these pictures while holding our youngest which was quite the balancing act!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

It's December!!!

It's December! Can you believe it?! 
The days and months are sure flying by to me and I am really trying to take it all in one day at a time and enjoy every second of it. 

With Christmas not too far away, we started decorating around the house. We added a few touches here and there....the plan was to keep things simple but still Christmassy (if that's even a word).  :)

I added a garland to our stairs with some stockings and ornaments to adorn it. We put up our tree and went with silver and gold as the theme this year. I can't wait for our girls to see their presents under the tree. Now that they are a bit older (but still very young) they will remember this Christmas more than the last, and that is extra special to me. 

We have also been reading from Scripture every night and plan to keep that up on a regular basis, not just for the holidays. They get excited about it now because after we are done reading about Jesus, they get a little treat at the end. I think most importantly, we want them to know that God loves them NO MATTER WHAT. We want our kids to know that God has loved them ever since the beginning and will always.

You may or may not have noticed a new wall color in the living room. (see picture above).
I haven't painted the whole room yet...but the plan is to go with a beautiful color by Benjamin Moore called Gray Mirage. It is lovely!! Right when I put the sample up, I knew it was the one. We plan on keeping the wood trim the same and not painting over it, so I wanted something that not only went with the rest of the house, but something that would compliment the wood tones we have in there. It is also one of Candace Olsen's favorite color, so that was a plus! It is a nice rich gray with strong green undertones that compliment the wood trim we have. I'm looking forward to that room being finished soon.

Here are some examples of how Gray Mirage looks in other rooms if you are curious:




It's a muddy color with great undertones...hard to go wrong with it I think. And it looks great with wood trim as you can see. 

I hope everyone has a great week and a fun time decorating for the season!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Meet Flowers


That is what my daughter's affectionately named the biggest stuffed animal in the house.
A big giraffe (who is apparently a girl) and stands at about 5 feet tall.

Ever since I first laid my eyes on one of these guys (after seeing them on a few blogs online), I decided right then and there that someday we would have one. Kind of random, I know, but also fun and a cute little accessory to any room! 

 Bathing suits in November?! 
Because why not?!

As soon as the box arrived, my girls squealed with delight. My oldest said, "Wow! That's a big box. It's almost as tall as our roof!" Not quite that tall sweet-heart, but it did come in a pretty tall box.

I had the girls guess what they thought was in the box when we brought it into the house. Both of them thought it was a toy train. I just love their imagination!
Nevertheless, once the giraffe was out of the box, they got so excited. We quickly put her up in the nursery where she will stay. 

This shows a close-up of the material she is made out of which happens to be super soft.

Ack! She is so cute and looks great in the nursery.

Someday I will get this room painted, but that's a blog post for another time.

And there's only 2 days until Thanksgiving! I hope everyone has a wonderful and safe one!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Color of the Year...

According to Sherwin Williams, their color of the year is.....


(wish I could get a better picture, but this was what I could find online)

I wasn't too surprised to hear that SW color of the year was white. Benjamin Moore came out with their color of the year not too long ago and it was "Simply White" so hearing that Sherwin Williams chose a shade in the same color family was to be expected.

Before SW came out with their color of the year, I painted some of the walls in our home in Alabaster, our trim, and the kitchen cabinets. So hearing that it was the color of the year was kind of exciting since we had already used it plenty in our home. 

If you are looking for a great white to use that is not too stark or too creamy, I would recommend this color! You might be thinking that white paint is white paint...BUT believe it or not, like many colors, there are many shades of white and they all have different undertones. Alabaster is one of those colors that I don't think you can go wrong with. While I would most likely never paint a large room or bedroom in this color, I did paint our bathrooms with this shade and it makes other colors around it pop. It would also look great on furniture too.

So what is your take on this color? Do you prefer rooms with more color as opposed to an off-white?

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

On My Mind

To continue a little bit of my last post, I have decided to keep the wood trim in the living room AND keep the front door painted in a pretty dark gray called Ashwood Moss. As of now, the two don't go that well together. However, before I even think about painting over the original wood trim in the living room, I want to try one last thing: painting the walls in that room. I definitely don't want to make a decision I regret (especially when it comes to painting over nice wood trim) so because I love both the trim and the door color, I'm going to keep both for now.
Also, thank you to those who commented and messaged me about the change. I appreciate all of your input and thought about each comment. So thank you!!

Before we moved into our home a year ago, the original owners painted the upper part of the walls a light cream color and the bottom was a medium-toned brown. While I have nothing against those colors, it doesn't mesh with the rest of our home, so we will be painting over them. Plus, the painters they hired actually missed a few spots that are very noticeable and we have had folks comment about it because it is kind of it is next on the list to take care of. 

I love Benjamin Moore's Horizon, Gray Wisp, and Sea Haze. Those are on the list as testers for the new wall color, but we might not get to painting that room until the new year (which will be here before we know it!)

In other news, we have a few packages coming in the mail soon. They are on their way and one of them is something I have been wanting to purchase for a long time.I know our kiddos will simply LOVE it.
Here is a "hint" as to what it might be! ;)

I'm hoping it arrives this week, and when it does I will be sure to blog about it!!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

When A Project Doesn't Go As Planned

Ever since we moved into our home last year, I wanted a dark gray door. In our last house, all of our doors were painted in a dark gray and I loved it. We got so many compliments on it because it looked good. So I thought I would continue that trend in our new house and start with painting our front door. However, after doing one coat of a pretty dark gray called Ashwood Moss, by Benjamin Moore, it wasn't love at first sight. In fact, I'm not sure I even like it. I thought this dark gray would go so well with some of the wood trim we have nearby...but it actually clashed a little bit and once the first coat was up it didn't look that good. Such a bummer!!

When I crop the picture so the wood trim in the living room can't be seen, the gray door looks great and stands a good way!

But when I took a picture of the gray colored door next to the surrounding wood trim it just didn't do it for me. Again, such a bummer because this gray is such a beautiful color. Good thing I only bought a sample!!!

Anyways, I'm left with either painting the trim in the living room white OR repainting the front door white. I would love to keep the door gray but have a hard time painting the trim in the living room white (which would probably have to happen in order for things to flow well from room to room)...OY! 
At least it is just paint.