Hi Friends! Just when I thought the crisp cool days had settled in, the heat is back out in full force. I took advantage of it today, though, and took the kids to a friend's pool that is still open. I know there will be plenty of cool weather ahead, so I want to enjoy the heat while we can.
Today I want to share a room that I don't often share. It may not be the most exciting room in the house, but It does serve many purposes.
When you walk in the back door of our house, which is the door we walk through every day, this is the room you walk into. It houses the washer and dryer, a laundry sorter and this storage piece, where we keep shoes, shopping bags and our milk jars. Directly off of this room is also the guest bathroom. This space was, apparently, an addition to the house at some point, because the basement doesn't extend below it.
When we moved into our house eight years ago, this room was covered with some ugly wood paneling. I wasn't sure how hard it would be to take down, and we already had so many other projects in queue, so I decided to just cover it in white paint. I actually love the texture that the paneling adds.
I know I have mentioned this in previous posts, but my favorite way to decorate is to collect pieces over time. There is no instant way to create a space I love. Yes, I could go to home goods and pottery barn and buy everything in a day to decorate my home, but then it wouldn't have a story to tell. It would be too boring and too perfect. Almost every piece in our home was either handmade or found at a thrift shop, antique store, garage sale or dumpster. It ends up taking me forever to get rooms together, but it is such a thrill when I find that perfect item.
The shoe sorter was built by a friend. I found the wooden crates, sun hat, antique garden sheers, crock, wash board, linen pillowcase, shovel and wire crate at various shops. My husband found the chalkboard in a roadside pile and the farmhouse sign was made by a little shop on etsy.
I love to add natural elements to my home, like this basil and mint from my garden and the freshly picked pears. I think it gives my home that cozy farmhouse feel that I am going for.
My husband found the antique grain sack, that sits on top of my laundry sorter, at an antique shop and gave it to me for Christmas. I found the lavender wreath at Target. It has lasted several years and is still going strong.
One day I hope to add some open shelving above the washer and dryer, instead of cabinets. I also hope to swap out the flooring for something a little tougher, like ceramic tile.
All in all, I absolutely love this room. The three windows allow the natural light to constantly flood the room, and the location of the washer and bathroom is key. Whenever my kids come in from rolling around in the mud and splashing in puddles, I throw their clothes straight into the washer and stick them in the shower, all without them ever making their way into the main part of our home. I love containing the mess to this little area of our home. If we ever move, I feel like some kind of mud room will be a non-negotiable.
I hope you enjoyed this little peek into a room in our home that is almost all function. Thank you for reading along!
Read on friends:
Hearty, roasted vegetable, soups aren't typical spring fare around these parts, where days can reach 80 plus degrees.
But, normal or not, I was craving something creamy, bone broth-y and roasted-y. (Sorry I am kind of off my adjective game today.)
If I would have to sum up the last few days in a word it would be worry.
I never really planned to make a big official announcement, but I wanted to let you all know I am 11 weeks pregnant with baby number five.
Although I am most definitely super happy to be called to mother another child, there were a few things about this stage of life that I seemed to have forgotten.
I love being pregnant.
It is so amazing to feel those first tiny flutters, and to find the fast and consistent heart tones with the fetoscope. I look forward to those first few contractions that mean baby is finally coming.
It really is such a special time in life to be thankful for.
The people who lived in this old bungalow before my family certainly gave us some paint colors and design choices I wasn't super thrilled with, but they did give me a gift I am thankful for every single year around this time.
They have to be the most fragrant and beautiful flower in all of creation.
And because their delicate petals and top heavy blooms don't last long, their beauty must be fully documented, to carry us all through until the few days they can be enjoyed next year.
I love coffee in all forms, but that perfect iced latte is the stuff that makes me want to shell out five bucks at the coffee shop.
But, with all that added sugar, and a questionable milk source, I don't think it's a good habit to get into.
Plus, I love the idea of playing around with the ingredients and making some exciting combinations that you won't see at Starbucks.
Lately, as I have been marveling over all the culinary uses of essential oils, a thought popped in my head.
I want to reintroduce you to my sister Laura from Wholesome Homestead Blog.
She shared with us a few weeks ago a tutorial for how to make All Natural Organic Cocoa Lip Balm.
Today she is back with another DIY recipe that you can use to keep your clothes clean without all the junk.
You all know how I feel about simple farmhouse style.
Even though I live in town, I imagine myself sitting on my big wraparound porch, drinking a tall glass of homemade kombucha and watching my goats and chickens frolic about in deep prairie grasses and wild flowers.
I know I'm not alone.
I crave the simple life.
We just love using essential oils in our home.
We have taken advantage of their powerful properties, for helping with restful sleep, boosting immunity, soothing an upset tummy, opening up congested airways, and so much more.
Since essential oils are 50- 70 times more powerful than herbs, they are often too potent to place directly on the skin, especially that of a child.
That is why it is so great to already have them diluted and ready to roll on.
I guess I am a maker in every sense of the word.
Even when I know I can get something relatively inexpensively at the store, I still find so much satisfaction in learning how to make it myself at home.
Being a maker allows me to add my own creative spin on everything and enjoy the process of seeing pieces and ingredients become finished things.
I have to admit, it is easier for me to adapt to a healthier diet than it is for me to address the toxins lurking in our home.
I have read that the mattresses we sleep on are toxic, our cellphones emit harmful EMF's and new furniture off-gases toxins for years after purchasing it.
It can honestly all get so overwhelming.
It's 9 P.M. The kids are all in bed and you want a treat.
You want something healthy, but you don't want to spend an hour and half making it. You also don't want to be up until midnight cleaning a sink full of dishes.
If this scenario sounds familiar, then this recipe, my friend, is for you.
As long as you keep a few bags of coconut flakes stocked in your pantry, and your cast iron skillet out on the stove, then you are a mere 10 minutes away from crispy, coconut-y, sweet goodness.
We just recently finished our farmhouse bathroom remodel, but the plans have been in my little head for a few years now.
Ever since I started dreaming about swapping out our blue tile for white and removing our old vinyl shower insert, I knew I wanted a clawfoot tub.
I browsed the web to price new ones, but it only took a few minutes to cponvince me we wpould be going the fixer-upper antique route.
Learn how to make a simple four ingredient all purpose cleaner with essential oils. Regular cleaners are full of toxins and chemicals that are harmful to the body.
I am so excited to finally be sharing pictures from our full bathroom remodel.
We started working on this back in January, when we literally ripped everything out down to the studs.
We had to rework the plumbing to allow for a better layout.
Just a little recap of the bathroom before.
I am such a simple girl.
I literally do not own a single necklace or pair of earrings.
My shoe collection consists of a pair of wedges and a pair of flats.
This entire winter I wore the same three button ups, three sweaters and three pairs of jeans. My husband and I have always called this "my uniform."
I have gone through seasons of my life where I have tried to be a little more fancy, and get some high heals, red lipstick and gold dangle earrings.
Today I want to introduce you to my sister Laura from Wholesome Homestead Blog.
She blogs all about staying healthy, by avoiding toxins in your home, and eating nutrient dense, traditional food.
She is also a gut health expert.
Make sure to head over to her blog, and get on her newsletter, so you never miss one of her amazing posts, like how and why to make bone broth, natural remedies for ear infections and DIY toothpaste.
You know, I was thinking about just how excited I am that spring is here.
When I was a little kid I hardly noticed the changing of the seasons.
I didn't dread winter, and all its hassle of having to bundle up in warm socks and a coat, every time I wanted to step outside.
Probiotics have been all the buzz for several years now.
Ten years ago you may have only heard the term "gut health" thrown around by in-the-know west coast Yoga types, but nowadays you're likely to hear it coming out of your grandma's mouth.
These things may just seem like a trendy fad, but there is actually some serious science backing up the hype.
For the very abridged version of the story:
There are good guys in your gut and there are bad guys. God put the bad guys in there, so they could break down your body at death (not the happiest topic, but it's true). They were meant to be there in small quantities and the good guys were supposed to proliferate and make a healthy body.
If you have hung around here with me for very long, you know I'm a health nut.
But I am not sure that I have shared with you my love for a healthy home, as of yet.
I like to make my own hand soap, tooth paste and cleaning products with essential oils.
Now, of course, my home is farm from perfect. You already know about my painting addiction and affinity for bleaching drop cloths. Eh. Balance, right? You simply can't control everything.
But one easy healthy switch to make is the sheets you sleep on every night.
Take a tour of our little farmhouse in the spring.
Learn how to slipcover a wingback chair with painter's drop cloth. I have included a video documenting the whole slipcovering process, lots of instructions and my tips for an excellent fit.
He is not here, for He has risen, as he has said. Matthew 28:6
The days are getting warmer and a little longer. Soon we will be planting greens and herbs in the garden and spending most of our day outside.
Spring is coming.
I look forward to springtime every year.
Classic black and brass accents are my go-to's for modern farmhouse style lighting. I have been eyeing a few of these fixtures from World Market for a long time.
When we first moved into our home almost nine years ago, every square inch of the hardwood was covered with blue carpet, laminate or tile, except for in the living room.
We removed the carpet in our master bedroom before we even moved in.
It was a few years before we rented a sander and tackled the upstairs bedrooms.
We refinished the entire top floor and even ripped the carpet off the stairs.
You know those ideas you get and you're not sure how they'll work out?
That's how I felt about my idea to turn a five gallon bucket into a canvas tote.
We just recently had some built ins put in upstairs in our old house, to block off a really dangerous ledge that goes out over the staircase. We designed it mostly for the purpose of keeping the kids safe, but I also thought I could use the shelves for storage and pretty things.
You don't have to hang around the Pinterest DIY scene for very long to find out that drop cloth is a star player in the upholstery, slipcover, curtain and pillow making game.
I have used a lot of drop cloth in our farmhouse and for good reason. It is durable, high quality and, best of all, super cheap.
I first made these pajamas for my girls a few summers ago, when I came across some really pretty vintage sheets that I needed to find a use for.
The faded florals were so pretty and airy, I thought they would be perfect for summer PJ sets.
Being a neutrals girl, I love any pattern that isn't too busy, like stripes, plaid or buffalo check.
This particular fabric by Premier Prints is one of my favorite. I love the larger scale buffalo check and the subtle gray color.
I made these pillow covers for our bedroom last Spring, but since moved them upstairs to the girls' room. I like to switch things up. Often.
Sewing simple square pillow shams is one the easiest sewing projects and perfect for beginners.
It should come as no surprise to you when I say I am thinking about redoing our boys' room. Actually, I have been thinking about it for quit some time. As a blogger, I do a whole lot of hanging around on Pinterest and Instagram. I get to thinking of so many new ideas, that I always want to switch things up.
I am not quite ready to jump into the project, as I have so many other ones going on right now, so I thought I would just make a design board instead!
I love this project for the ease and simplicity of it. You could easily whip out three of these babies in 30 minutes once you get the hang of it.
Now, before anyone gets too upset, I know this isn't actually macrame. This is just my super simple way to make a jute plant hanger that mimics the macrame style.
I love having plants around the house. They reduce carbon dioxide levels and other air pollutants, and they just look so beautiful and fresh.
I have a lot of people ask me how I can live with so much white in a house full of kids.
Well, the answer is, slipcovers.
Slipcovers can be removed and thrown in the wash. My kids get the furniture really really dirty.
Anything that is not removable might as well be disposable.
Case in point....the before picture of this bench.