home.

home.

for the last year, this is the thing I have longed for most.

on March 9th, 2016, devastating flood waters swept across our town and left many without their homes, businesses, and churches. I was eight months pregnant with our first baby when water began seeping into our home underneath the baseboards. within thirty minutes, there was a foot of water in our home. we stood there hopelessly as we watched the life we had built in our tiny white house nearly fall apart. I have never felt such despair. it was a moment I will never forget.

we left our home that day with only what we could carry. from the street, I wept as I watched our house fill with water, covering all of our belongings + our most treasured possessions. that day, we said goodbye forever to our tiny white house. this was the home I found driving around one day, signed the lease the next day, and sat empty for five months until our wedding. this was the home my husband carried me across the threshold the night of our wedding. this was the home we learned so much about love and loss and marriage and forgiveness and life. this is the home we planned to bring our baby home to the very next month. but in a moment, everything changed.

the weeks that followed were a blur, marked with tears, disbelief, fear, exhaustion. we moved in with my parents indefinitely. I was so grateful they took us in, but still heartbroken about the loss of our home. people told me how nice it would be to have all the help once the baby arrived, but truthfully, I wasn’t exactly thrilled about stepping into parenthood with an audience. I remember crying most of the month of March and a lot of the month of April. in addition to the flood uprooting us and the pregnancy hormones and preparing for a baby and all

the changes that would take place upon the baby’s arrival, the job I had loved and held for five years was changing. for the first time in four summers, I wouldn’t spend my days with the children I nannied. and in the fall, Andy would begin kindergarten so they wouldn’t need me at all. it was just a lot at once. I know I was an absolute pleasure to be around during those weeks.

"it's just stuff." I heard this more than once. and it's true, it is just stuff. it's only temporary. in the grand scheme of things, it doesn't matter. but let me tell you this: I love my stuff. probably a little too much. days after the flood, I was going through what had been salvaged and I came across a damp index card. it read: "if you're identified by what you have, who are you when you lose it all?" my Sunday school teachers in middle school had asked that question and I held onto it all these years. I wept as I read it, never having understood the gravity of it and that I would be in a place where I'd have to ask myself this.

some mentioned that the flood was a "blessing," or would turn out to be. this was laughable to me in those first few days, even months. however, I was overwhelmed by how we were blessed through this trial. men in boats and trucks helped my family and others to salvage what we could. people helped with the flood relief. people gave to us. I saw with my own eyes the church being the church. I saw people we knew + loved and some who barely knew us before the flood love us in a way that only the Father can. 

and because of the flood, I was given one of the sweetest seasons in time with my family. I learned so much about home this year, and how it doesn't matter so much where you are, but who you're with. and people were right--all that help with the baby was nice.

the next month, we welcomed our son into the world. the days following that were filled with joy, tears, and hope. in a time of darkness, the Lord so sweetly showed me how much He loves me, through His constant + timely provision and in the way He trades beauty for our ashes. every time I held our baby or saw him smile, I felt as if the Lord was saying to me, "I know a lot has happened, but here's this really great thing I made just for you." His goodness is overwhelming.

life got a lot sweeter after the baby arrived. we adjusted to a new normal. we began saving as much as we could in hopes of buying a home. and then we waited. and waited. and waited. we waited for a credit score. we waited for a house. but not just any house. the right house. our house. we found a few we liked. I could have seen us living in any of them. they all had potential and would have been fun to fix up and call home, but the timing just wasn’t right.

in October, seven months after the flood, we found it. I had driven past it hundreds of times and always thought it was beautiful. in fact, the afternoon we went to look at it with our incredible realtor, I passed by it earlier that day not knowing it was for sale and thought, “wow. now that’s my dream house.” I never imagined it would be mine. two months later, we signed the papers. and now it’s ours.

I have seen firsthand how the Lord provides. I’ve seen this throughout my entire life, from childhood to adulthood. He was always faithful to provide great friends in all the places we lived growing up and He has been our joy + provision in the unknown. I know He will provide, though I struggle at times with unbelief. but one of my favorite parts of this story is not just what He provided, but how He provided. not just a house, but a home. a home that was better than I ever could have dreamed of. a home that was immeasurably more

we've spent the last three months renovating this home. it has been an adventure, to say the least. I'm sure my husband would say that's putting it nicely. it wasn't a major fixer upper, it just needed a little love... and some fresh paint, new flooring, bathroom updates, de-popcorned ceilings, a revamped staircase, and all new light fixtures + hardware throughout. but that's it really.

it was certainly a challenge. that needs to be said. but it was fun, too. of course, fixing up a house has always been a dream of mine. so while it's not for everyone, this kind of thing is right up my alley.

we are so grateful and humbled and I can't wait to share more about this adventure and our renovation story on the blog!

"now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! amen."

Ephesians 3:20-21

"and He determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though He is not far from any one of us."

Acts 17:26-27

"for every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God."

Hebrews 3:4

baked parmesan sweet potatoes.

for the first time in the history of the tiny white house, I have a recipe I'd like to share with you! it's one of my all-time favorites. it's easy. it's delicious. and it's healthy, if you're into that sorta thing.




I discovered it on Pinterest. like so many others, I am constantly pinning recipes that I'd like to try. what kinds of recipes? all kinds of recipes! I have a board for every food group, just about. I once mentioned on Twitter that the neat thing about my Pinterest boards is the versatility... one minute I'm pinning sweet potato recipes, the next hushpuppies. it's just the truth.

speaking of yams, that's just what I'm sharing with you today. I pinned this recipe awhile ago but just got around to preparing it for the first time this summer. you see, I didn't know I liked sweet potatoes until this year. but don't worry, I'm making up for lost time, and it's all because of these baked parmesan sweet potatoes by Kristyn of Lil' Luna!

they're sweet, savory, and a huge hit in my kitchen. to see the full recipe, click here.


one summer night, my cousins were in town visiting, and our plans for dinner included cooking every vegetable in the garden + house. we all pitched in, preparing different dishes. my contribution? these delicious sweet potatoes. the entire meal was scrumptious. the only thing better than the presentation was the taste!


two things my mother always says: 
  1. make good choices. 
  2. make colorful choices. 
I think this counts as both. if this isn't a picture of a southern summer supper, I don't know what is!

one day a few weeks ago, lunchtime rolled around and nothing in the house sounded good, except this recipe. I was home with the baby, so I knew if I went to the trouble of making this, I would be the only one to enjoy it. normally, I wouldn't have bothered with it. but once I got to thinking about those sweet potatoes, I couldn't stop. I had all the ingredients on hand, so I was out of excuses. once the baby went down for his nap, I set to work in the kitchen.


preparing this meal gave me a chance to be still and reflect. and later, when I sat at the table to scarf it down enjoy it, I had the realization that sometimes it's nice to slow down and create something, even if you will be the only one to take delight in it. it's good for the soul.

I am so glad I slowed down that day, because I learned this simple but important lesson. I also realized this might be a recipe, and lesson, worth sharing.


I hope you enjoy it as much as I have! thanks to Kristyn for sharing!





a {mini} fall tour.

decorating for holidays, and decorating just because, looks a little different than it used to, as we have been living with family since the flooding of our home. I really and truly have loved almost every minute of it, but it has certainly been challenging, at times, for all my "roommates."





one of the wonderful things about being back at home is that my sweet mother has given me complete "creative control." in other words, I am free to style, decorate, rearrange, etc. the way I would in my own home. this woman is so gracious to do this because, you know, it's not even my house! but to be completely candid, I think she has probably enjoyed it a little, because who doesn't want a live-in decorator?

that said, it is interesting to decorate a different house in these new seasons. I never dreamed that last fall and Christmas would be my last time to decorate for the holidays at the tiny white house. however, at my parents', I have a great canvas to work with. for instance, they have a mantle! I know, I know--what a luxury, right? but this is something we didn't have in our first home, so it's fun to create something centered around this.



but enough with all the words! without further ado, I'd like to share the 2016 {mini} fall tour with you!





when I began to envision my fall decor, I knew I wanted to incorporate this oversized frame. I actually acquired this sometime earlier in the year. one afternoon, I was driving the little girl I nanny to her voice lesson. the church where her lessons took place was located near Good Will; so some days, if time allowed, we would stop by to see if they had any treasures for us. but, that's actually not where this came from. it was on the way to Good Will that I spotted a dumpster behind a store and what looked like a dresser sitting near it. so we took a detour and that's where I happened upon this piece! the dresser was beyond repair, but this frame was on the ground behind it. it used to frame a mirror, but I suppose the dresser + mirror fell and cracked so the store threw it out. obviously, they didn't realize they could paint it, staple some toile fabric in it, and place it on their mantle for fall decor, but that's neither here nor there.



in the spring, we hung a boxwood wreath in the frame. but when our baby arrived, that wreath moved to the nursery. so the frame sat empty for some months, and then September rolled around. I got the idea to frame some fabric and then remembered I had a couple yards of toile fabric I'd bought from Hobby Lobby to recover some pillows. it had been sitting under our bed, folded up, in the very plastic bag it left the store in last fall, waiting for its time to shine. with some assistance from my mother, we stretched + stapled this fabric in the frame. it's a little simple, maybe even understated; but, to me, it definitely shines. this is one of my favorite projects to date. and the best part is it cost less than $10 to make!



as I've mentioned before, silver is one of my favorite things to feature in my decor. this antique silver ice bucket was a gift from my husband last Christmas. clearly, he knows the way to my heart. in the spring + summer, it was filled with hydrangeas. for the fall season, it holds stems of cotton.


the ice bucket sits upon my great grandfather's Bible. my mother has several Bibles that have been in our family for generations, and I'm jealous and I want them. isn't that ironic? to covet someone else's vintage Bible. she says I can't have them [yet, anyway]; but since we're roommates, I am free to use them in my our decor.



of course, pumpkins are a staple when it comes to fall decor, and there's just something about white ones. the oversized blue pitcher is a favorite of mine and adds a little color to this mostly neutral scene.


a wire basket filled with cozy blankets is a simple, yet decorative way to create storage and warmth--quite literally.



in the 2015 {mini} fall tour, I mention that simply placing pumpkins thoughout your home adds a little touch of fall without much effort. this lovely vignette is on the shelves of the hutch in the kitchen. you already know I love blue + white dishes and greenery, throw in a pumpkin and I'm sold.  and would you look at that? another old Bible I covet.





as pleased as I was with the way the mantle turned out, I couldn't help but feel as if the fall decor wasn't complete. so, I decided to set the little drop-leaf table in the kitchen. I used my favorite blue + white dishes, fresh apples + berries, and a few nuts I found in the backyard. 






I was excited to use these chargers I scored at Home Goods when we were visiting family in Texas last Christmas. I found them hidden under some bowls on a bottom shelf and just had to have them. I did feel a little bad, though, because I'm pretty sure someone hid them there with the intention of coming back for them. but you know, finders keepers, or whatever.

the mismatched flatware is part of my collection that I've gathered along the way, from antique stores to garage sales and junk shops. the antique linen napkins were another Christmas gift from my husband. cloth napkins are another one of my favorite things to collect.









it's not much; but it's warm and inviting, and that's enough for me.

thanks for looking! what do you think? how do you decorate for fall?






life begins all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.
-F. Scott Fitzgerald



I'm so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.
-Anne of Green Gables



gracie | senior session

there are so many things I love about creating and working with my hands. photography is one of those things. I must admit, though, I am a rookie. and I am okay with this. and while I'm being completely candid, I prefer to photograph still life. I enjoy capturing photos of my family and friends and pets and the children I nanny; but I prefer to shoot things that are still, that I don't have to coach, that I can arrange just so and step back and not worry about them moving. I have much respect for photographers that photograph actual human beings. I think it's honorable and challenging, and I am so glad there are people who choose this aspect of photography. I just can't handle that pressure. that, and I don't feel as if it is my calling.

but sometimes, there are exceptions to this "rule" of mine. usually these exceptions are family members or people I've birthed. sometimes it's close friends or even acquaintances.

one of my favorite exceptions to the rule and human beings in general is my younger sister. she is incredible. she's an artist. she can sing. she's athletic. she is kind and tender-hearted. she can dance. she's hilarious. she is genuine. she is brilliant. she's weird. she is beautiful. she's brave. she's so many things. so many good things. 

Gracie graduated from high school in May and I had the honor of taking her senior portraits. we had so much fun capturing these photos. some were taken in my parents' yard, some on the football field of her high school. a few were taken in front of a blue brick wall that caught her eye. some were taken in our favorite antique + thrift store, some in her favorite diner + place to get ice cream. the best part about our "shoot" is how much fun we had doing it. the other best part is that this is so her. if you know my sister, you know this is right up her alley.

but enough with the commentary, meet Gracie, my sweet baby sister who is full of life and just so much fun.















diy crib mobile.

 


recently on the blog, I shared a little about our baby's nursery. one of the things specially created for his room was the crib mobile. today, I want to share a tutorial with you on how to create this crib mobile.





materials needed:

-embroidery hoop
-fishing line
-x-acto knife + scissors
-tissue paper
-embroidery needle(s)
-sewing thread
-book of your choice
-paper + pencil
-drill with a 1/16th bit


first, I read through Robin Hood looking for the best parts. you know what I mean... the meaningful parts with good words and strong imagery. the parts with the most adventure and love and excitement. this step is important because our baby will be able to read from the time he exits the womb, so I want him to have the best parts of the story floating over his sweet, little head. okay, so no. this step was more for myself. I wanted favorite parts of the story like... when Robin Hood + Little John meet, when he's reintroduced to Maid Marian, when he shoots his last arrow... you get the idea. the good stuff.


in case you haven't noticed from reading my blog, or if you know me personally, I'm a word girl. my mother has always described me as wordy. if I ever tell you a story or something that happened in a book or show, be prepared to stay awhile. I really don't mean to be. but there's just so many good words out there and I like a lot of them and I use a lot of them to say the things I say.


so, I skimmed through Robin Hood and picked out my favorite parts and marked them. these would be our clouds. next, I took the x-acto knife and begin to cut these pages out.


my little sister helped me with this project and she's a real artist. we decided it would be best for aesthetics + symmetry + balance to have two small clouds and two large clouds. she sketched a stencil for our small cloud and I did one for the larger clouds. we did this with a pencil and notebook paper and sketched until we came up with a cloud shape we liked.

then, I took the clouds and placed them on the page, over the words I wanted to be seen. because I'm so wordy, this part was a little sad + hard because I couldn't fit the entire quotation as these are little bitty clouds. I would've loved to have had the full excerpts I had chosen, but that just wasn't doable. [one way to make this work would be to mat + frame the excerpts, rather than cutting them into the shape of a cloud. that's one of my favorite, super easy crafts that makes for beautiful, yet different framed art. I have a few of these type of framed pieces in my home, ranging from hymns to poetry to stories.]



I traced my little clouds over the book pages and then cut them out with scissors. one thing to keep in mind when tracing the clouds is this: after you trace your cloud, you'll need to flip your cloud stencil over to trace your next cloud, so that it will match up when it's stitched together. this is one of the easier parts of this project.


after the clouds are all cut out, it's time to sew! we took little pieces of tissue paper, crumpled them up, and flattened them back out. this is what we stuffed our little clouds with. I wanted them to have some volume and this was the best I could come up with for stuffing. next, get out your needle and thread and get ready for the fun part! and by fun, I mean most tedious, time-consuming part. once you thread your needle, start stitching your clouds together. I would sew the cloud about halfway around and then begin stuffing it with bits of tissue paper. this part really doesn't take too long, it just takes the most attention.


I took the inner hoop of the embroidery hoop [the one without the hardware], white-washed it, let it dry, and then drilled holes. actually, I let my husband do that step. I never want him to feel left out of my projects, so I try to always find something for him to do to be a part. that last line should actually read: I always need help with at least one part of my projects, so I beg him to help me.

he took his handy drill and used a 1/16th drill bit and drilled four holes, one across from the other, evenly around. then, I took two pieces of fishing line, probably about two feet in length and inserted them into the holes on the embroidery hoop. they crossed over each other and I gathered the four strands together and tied a knot. [this sounds confusing, but there are photos below that will make this step more clear] after this, I cut a shorter piece of fishing line, threaded that through the embroidery needle and into the top of the cloud, and tied a knot. I took this piece of fishing line sewn onto my cloud and threaded that through the hole on the embroidery hoop and tied a knot [several times so it wouldn't slip through]. I repeated this step until all four clouds were fastened to the hoop. I didn't measure the exact length of fishing line the clouds would hang from. I eyeballed it and purposely made them to hang at different lengths. I did intentionally hang the two larger clouds across from each other on the hoop and the smaller across from each other to create balance + symmetry.


my husband placed a screw hook in the ceiling, and after cutting one more piece of fishing line about two feet long, I looped it under the knot that held the four strands together. then we hung it from the ceiling.





















I wrote this post just weeks before our baby arrived. he's here now! even though he's not sleeping in his crib yet, he took a little nap in it one day and I couldn't resist snapping a photo of him under his sweet little mobile.




thanks for reading + hope you enjoyed!

the nursery.

on August 29th, 2015, my husband and I found out we were expecting our first baby. we were stunned and so unbelievably excited. it didn't seem real for the first few months [still doesn't sometimes], but eventually it began to sink in as we began to prepare for this sweet baby and all the changes that would take place.


one of the things I was most excited about was creating a nursery. I had a vision in mind of what I would like for a boy or a girl. it wasn't a one-size-fits-all, gender neutral nursery; but it would have been very similar, regardless of the gender. I wanted simple, classic, quiet.


the day before thanksgiving, we found out we were having a boy! I was ecstatic. I've always wanted an older brother, so I always dreamed of having a boy first. this was literally a dream come true.


as excited as I was about decorating a nursery, I didn't really get started on it until March. I'm sure this surprised some; it surprised me a little. but I didn't want to jump the gun; plus, we had lots of furniture and things to shift around to make room for baby.


the day before my first baby shower, I finished the nursery. mostly, anyhow. several of my precious friends came in town for the shower and that gave me the motivation I needed to really wrap things up in the baby's room. I'd been dreaming about what I wanted our nursery to look like for months, maybe even years, and slowly gathering + collecting these items the previous eight months.

so one Friday morning, my parents came over to help bring all my dreams to life. my dad hung the curtains my mom had sewn for the room, on the curtain rod he painted the perfect shade of gold that I had searched months for. a beautiful, antique garden gate hung on the wall over the buffet [now a changing table] and a boxwood wreath hung over that, like a bow on top of a gift. my artist little sister created priceless artwork that decorated the walls, sweet watercolor paintings of baby animals. the buffet and armoire I spent hours, even weeks, restoring and refinishing looked just like they belonged, just like I envisioned. the crib that my husband so lovingly assembled sat in front of the one window in the bedroom, framing it perfectly. the crib skirt our baby's great grandmother made rested around it, gently flowing onto the carpet.


it. was. perfect. it was my new favorite room in the house. I loved walking in there. I found any excuse I could to do it. it was everything I dreamed it would be and more. 

and then on March 9th, less than a week later, our home flooded. this crazy, unexpected rain rolled into town and flooded homes, streets, businesses, churches, everything. it was devastating. and the tiny white house was no more.


so, here we were, eight months pregnant and temporarily displaced. my gracious parents have taken us in for the time being. and we had got to set up a nursery. again. this time wasn't quite as fun or exciting. it was marked with tears and sadness and bitterness and even a little anger. it actually took me a little while to get around to doing anything because I had already done it all and set up this perfect [to me] nursery and then it was washed all away, along with the rest of our home.

but my family was so kind and gentle and patient and helped me to slowly pull myself together and recreate this nursery for our baby. and you know what? it's even better than I dreamed it'd be.

it is now complete, minus the little boy who will one day make his home here.












the beloved buffet-turned-changing-table that has been in the family for years did not make it through the flood. talk about heartbreaking. I cried many tears over this. then we decided to improvise with our potting bench, which used to serve as our entertainment center. this was the first piece of furniture I ever bought for our home. before we were married, I snagged it at a garage sale for forty bucks. it's one of my favorite pieces. I'm sad that the buffet couldn't weather the storm, but I love that this piece is getting use again for yet another unconventional purpose.









my sister + I created this little mobile to hang over the crib. I wanted something sweet and serene and, frankly, not stupid to use as our crib mobile. so I came up with this idea of little floating clouds made from book pages. I cut out some of my favorite excerpts from Robin Hood and used them for my clouds. you can find a diy crib mobile tutorial here.








thanks for taking a look! hope you enjoyed.




"even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young--a place near your altar, O Lord Almighty."
Psalm 84:3

the buffet makeover.

let me start by saying I am very pleased with the outcome of this project, but I need to be honest and tell you that removing veneer is not for the faint of heart. I had zero experience, as this was my first time to do so. and for whatever reason, I thought it would be a single, thin layer of veneer and that would be all. this was not the case. there was the top layer of veneer, another layer of thin cheap wood [I'm no wood expert, but I'd venture to say it was particle board or low grade plywood], bits of glue, and then I got to the real wood.







I also made a few mistakes. as I was pulling veneer off of the sides of the buffet, I felt some thin wood so I yanked at it, thinking it was a layer of the cheap wood over the real wood. this was also not the case. that was the actual side of the cabinet and I tore it off. luckily, my handy husband helped me out and we got some plywood, cut it to size, and secured it into place. this was probably a happy accident because this piece has seen a lot of life and needed a few nips and tucks.


before I began this project, I did a little research on Pinterest to learn how to remove veneer. my original plan was to strip the veneer and paint this piece white. you know, my go-to. but I plan to use it in our baby's nursery and there will already be a lot of white in there, so I decided to try my hand at antiquing wax and give it a stained look. I've never done this before either, so this project was an all around experiment. fortunately, it turned out well.


the materials I used in this project are listed below:
-gloves [this is probably common sense and a given when it comes to any type of woodworking project. I am an amateur, though, so it never even crossed my mind until I had sufficiently cut and bandaged multiple fingers.] 
-joint knife
-damp towel
-clothes iron
-orbital sander
-antiquing wax


some pieces were already chipping and curling up. those were easy to peel off or pop off using the joint knife. and then there were other pieces...



for really stubborn sections of veneer, I found that laying a damp towel down and ironing over hard-to-remove pieces helped to reactivate the glue and, in turn, loosen up the veneer. then I used the joint knife to scrape and lift away the damp wood. our little iron has never seen so much action.



another thing I was excited to try in this project was this antiquing wax. it's by Miss Mustard Seed, who is one of my favorite designers. I love her work, and now I know I love her wax. maybe I'll try her milk paint next!


this project took longer than I anticipated. it probably could have been completed in a weekend or two, if I had worked nonstop. I, however, took my sweet time and many, many breaks. so it took me about six-ish weeks. not my best record, but it's done now and I'm happy with it.

ready to see the finished product? here it is!




I chose to keep the original hardware. I love the aged look of it. besides a few new screws, the handles + hinges are original to the piece.



here's a close-up of the top after much sanding and applying the antiquing wax. I don't usually love stained things, but I love this finish. my husband's grandfather, who helped replace the sides, asked me if I planned on filling in the gaps + worm holes. he couldn't believe it when I told him I planned to keep it just the way it was. I think every scratch, dent, and worm hole adds a little character. 


the missing drawers that used to be in the center of the buffet were broken and misplaced before I got my hands on this piece. I hate that, but I plan to have some wood cut and placed in the middle to make shelves and I'll find some baskets to fill them and create more storage.

this lovely piece of furniture once was a buffet in my husband's great, great grandmother's home, then lived hidden away in an old barn for years + years, and now is going to serve as a changing table + additional storage in our first baby's nursery.

maybe once I finish up the nursery and style this piece, I'll get around to sharing it with you. but don't hold your breath... it could be another six weeks or so.






a little valentine's party.

if you know me personally or have read previous posts, you may know I am a nanny. it's a sweet, exhausting blast, all at the same time. this summer will make five years on the job.

we really like to celebrate and put on shows. in the summer, we host the super summer show. it's a variety show with everything from singing + dancing to shooting hoops. around Christmas, we have a Christmas program--complete with a live nativity. birthdays are a big deal, too. I fill the car up with balloons and a birthday banner and we listen to fun music while we drive around. the kids are always excited to be picked up from school on their birthday and go for a ride in the party wagon.

valentine's day is no different. I fall somewhere in the middle of the spectrum, between those who absolutely loathe valentine's day and those who love it so much they wish it was every day. I think we should love each other and show it every day, but it is fun to give cards and I'd be lying if I said I didn't like receiving flowers. when my husband + I observe valentine's day, we usually just eat dinner together. sometimes it's in a restaurant [rarely], sometimes it's grilling steaks at home [once], and sometimes it's sitting on the couch eating crawfish with no pants on. that's actually my favorite way to celebrate.


I like to celebrate it with my babies, too, and throw a little party. they each get a mailbox, compliments of the Target dollar section. these are filled with valentines from their parents, siblings, pets, and even my family. we eat cake and dance and sometimes do a craft. it's pretty fun, if I do say so myself. this year's party was a little different. we partied in shifts because one of my kids was sick and had a doctor's appointment during the appointed party time. I wish we could've all been together, but it was a sweet time just the same.



I made punch [ginger ale + white grape juice]. apparently, this has a kick to it so it's best for those with a mature palate. the kids were impressed with the bubbles; but after one sip, all three informed me it was "too spicy."
















a few years ago, I saw something on Pinterest about how to bake mini cakes. this year, I finally got around to trying it! all you need is an empty tin can. after removing the paper wrapper and top + bottom of the can, wrap foil around one end. spray the inside of the can with nonstick spray, fill it halfway with cake batter, and bake on 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes. and voilà! mini cakes.



I'd also like to state, for the record, that these are their genuine faces and reactions upon opening and reading their valentines. they were so sweet and so grateful. it made my heart so happy.












this was our "craft," if it can even be called that. I cut a heart shape out of black poster board and they glued pompoms + scraps of wrapping paper, making their own giant valentines. it was very simple and I actually came up with the idea when I was about to throw away remnants of wrapping paper that were too little to actually wrap anything with, but too cute to be thrown away. it was fun and not too messy and they got to take a little something home to show their parents, along with their goody bags and sugar highs.






a silly string fight was not actually on the agenda. but the kids found two cans in the back room of our house, or my studio, as I call it. so we went outside and they went to war. I mean really, what's a valentine's party without a little silly string?






and there you have it. our little valentine's party.

and wherever you fall on the spectrum, whether you're a lover or a hater, happy valentine's day to you.







"and now these three remain: faith, hope and love. but the greatest of these is love."

1 Corinthians 13:13

a {mini} Christmas tour.


I can't believe Christmas is already here! every year I feel like it comes and goes so quickly. it makes me sad, too, because Christmastime is one of my favorite times and my favorite holiday, by far. with it comes the best traditions, best sights, best smells... it really is the most wonderful time of the year. so it's pretty much a given that it's my favorite season to decorate for. 

I love having a live tree inside the house--that's one of my favorite smells. and I love having greenery pretty much everywhere. I have greenery [mostly faux] displayed in my decor throughout the year, but I love having real, smelly greenery in the house during Christmas. this year when we went to get our tree, I asked the Christmas tree lady if I could keep the branches they cut off the bottom of the tree. she smiled real big and said, "honey, you can take all the branches you want" and pointed me to a massive pile of branches that had accumulated from all the trees being trimmed. I felt like I was in heaven. "grab a handful! as many as you can!" I shouted to my husband. he's such a trooper and took about three or four loads to his truck. now they fill pitchers, teapots, milk jugs, you name it all throughout our home. I'll be sad to see them go.

the good, prompt, professional bloggers share their Christmas home tours well before Christmas, perhaps so that you'll be able to glean some inspiration and recreate some of their ideas. but I am none of these things, so here are my ideas and inspiration,  just in time for Christmas. I hope you enjoy!

in the past year, I've discovered my love for silver, especially old, tarnished silver. my favorite pieces of silver I've collected so far are teapots, mint julep cups, and platters. I just love its classic, understated yet elegant look.




in my {mini} fall tour, I shared about how we use our piano as a mock mantle. so this is where most of our Christmas decor is placed. there are little touches of it all throughout the house, but this is the main event.



the thing you have to know about me is I'm the world's cheapest. I think I get this from my parents. this works well for me for a few reasons: 
  1. I don't have a huge budget, plus I don't want to spend much money
  2. I love the thrill of the hunt
most of the pieces I use to decorate come from secondhand stores, garage sales, dollar stores, or the trash. on the other hand, there are places that don't fall into the previous category but don't break the bank either and I have been known to get myself into spending trouble there. my favorites are TJ Maxx, HomeGoods, and Stein Mart.



see that cute, little enamel bucket full of berries? I found it one day while antiquing with friends. it was like seven bucks. I was SO excited about it. I didn't know what I was going to do with it at the time, but I knew I needed it and it would come in handy one day. a few weeks later, my uncle was in town visiting and had stopped by my house to drop off some furniture. "do you know what that is?" he asked. "umm... no. but it's cute, huh?" I replied. he smiled and then proceeded to inform me that it was a chamber pot. of course when he told me this, I had it sitting on my kitchen table. we laughed and laughed. I still think it's the cutest little chamber pot I've ever seen.


since we don't have a chimney to carefully hang our stockings by, we hang them on the potting bench that is our entertainment center. it's no fireplace, but it works.


in our kitchen, I set up a little hot chocolate bar that hasn't gotten much use except from myself.



and now for the biggest Christmas decoration of them all: the tree. this is our second year to put our tree in an oversized galvanized tub and I'm not tired of it yet. this is our third year to have lights only on our tree, as we own about seven ornaments. I keep meaning to start collecting those, but here we are. maybe I'll get around to it this year and by next, we'll have enough to decorate it! we'll see... because honestly, I love the simplicity of a tree and just lights.







I set my table, too, but it got about as much attention as the hot chocolate bar.


when I began to photograph my tablescape, I realized the majority of the items on my table came from the Dollar Tree. the gold chargers, the white dinner plates, the miniature holly wreaths, and the gold pears in the centerpiece were all purchased there. the placemats I found in the dollar section at Target--jackpot, I know. the green glasses, a garage sale. the antique toolbox, my husband's grandfather. and the cuties, Walmart's produce section.





I found this precious red + white garland at TJ Maxx one day and decided to hang it on my dining room window, along with two other garlands. the jingle bell garland I made with a little twine + dollar store jingle bells. I purchased the greenery garland a few years ago at Michael's.



and here's a few shots of our hazardous front porch, that started caving in two weeks ago.



and there you have it! this is what Christmas at the tiny white house looks like.

merry, merry Christmas to you + yours.









but the angel said to them, "do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people. today in the town of David, a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. this will be a sign to you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
Luke 2:10-12


"now thanks be to God for this indescribable gift, which is precious beyond words!"
2 Corinthians 9:15

a {mini} fall tour.

it's been a little while since I've shared a post, but since fall is coming to an end and winter [if it can even be called that in the south] is just around the corner, I thought I'd take you on a little fall tour of the tiny white house.


it's nothing too crazy or over the top, but I like to add a little touch of fall warmth to each room. and sometimes that just means throwing a pumpkin on a surface and calling it a day. 


first up: my fall tablescape.



I bought several fake pumpkins for 98¢ at Walmart and painted them shades of blue, cream, and khaki. I used them as my centerpiece and as a little happy for each place setting.

I also gathered chunky acorns to use on the mini cakestand centerpiece. I baked them on 350 degrees for about ten minutes, because I thought that might kill any bugs and funk growing in them. I'm not sure if it did, but I never saw any bugs or acorns rolling around on the table.






one of the not-so-good things about our little house is that we don't have a fireplace. I so hope in our next home we do. so since we have no mantle to decorate for holidays and no reason, I use the top of our piano as a mock mantle. here's what that ended up looking like:



one simple decor idea I came up with was to frame a packet of pumpkin seeds. I emptied out the packet, found a favorite chunky frame of mine, and used double sided tape to secure the seed packet in place. I think it turned out kind of cute. what do you think?






for the coffee table, I used a wooden dough bowl I found at a thrift store and filled it with cotton and a giant acorn I found at TJ Maxx. pretty simple, but adds a little taste of fall.


I also threw a couple pumpkins around the house, on shelves and counters. it adds a little bit of fall and takes almost no effort. 






like I said, nothing much, but it's funny how even little things add a little something extra. like so many other [white] girls, I love the fall. and not just because of pumpkin spice lattes--which I've never had, by the way. it's one of my favorite seasons... mainly because I am a heavy sweater so I sweat less in these months. but I also love the beauty of the changing leaves and scenery, how things seem to slow down, and all the time spent with family. football games are another plus, but that has less to do with the actual game [no offense, athletes] and more to do with the fine cuisine at the concession stand.


I hope you're enjoying these last days of fall and I hope your thanksgiving is filled with lots of family and laughter, delicious food and a grateful heart. after all, we all have so much to be thankful for.





"it is not joy that makes us grateful; it is gratitude that makes us joyful."
David Steindl-Rast



"give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever!"
1 Chronicles 16:34


simple {diy} silhouettes.

I've always loved the look of silhouettes, so classic and timeless. a few years ago, the children I nanny and I made some of themselves as a Christmas gift to their parents. I loved how they turned out and I've wanted to make my own ever since. about two years later, I finally got around to it. for the first time in the history of the tiny white house blog, I documented step-by-step instructions of the process.



here's what you'll need:
-printed photos of your subject's profile 
-black acrylic paint [I prefer matte, but gloss can be used as well]
-paint brush
-scissors
-tape, paper, + frame(s) [if you plan on framing]


first, take some photos of the profile in which you plan on doing a silhouette. this step is fairly simple, but here are a few tips to attain the desired look. 
  • take the photos outside. [this is also my number one tip for taking any photo. this is why I'm always hauling furniture outside to photograph it.] I've found that the natural light will help create crisp, clean lines, which will make for an easy cut.
  • for girls, the hair needs to be fixed in a way that will, for lack of a better term, look good in a profile shot. if your hair is shorter [above your shoulders], wearing it down is an option. if it's longer, it works best to have it up. I did some with my hair half up, half down, and it worked, but not as well as having it up. so I played around with it and tried a few different things... high bun, low bun, pony.
  • if you want a larger silhouette, you should take the photo in portrait format. if you want smaller, try landscape. for the silhouettes I made of the children, I chose to do a larger version. I took a close up photo in portrait format and ordered an 8x10 print. this time, I did it in landscape format. I ordered a few prints of the same shot in two different sizes [4x6, 5x7] and just played around with it. eventually I'd like to do a larger version of our silhouettes.
as far as ordering prints goes, I order gloss prints [though I prefer matte otherwise] from CVS or Walgreens. keep in mind, the prints don't have to be anything fancy. you'll be painting over these.

now that that's taken care of, it's time to get to work! carefully cut around the subject's profile in the picture. this step can be a little tedious, as you have to be precise and cut just so, so that a nose isn't too sharp and the hair is just right.


next up: painting. two to three coats of black paint will do the trick. just remember to leave time to dry between each coat.



now it's time to frame them! or do whatever you want to with them. I had two gold oval frames that I'd found at Goodwill, that I thought would be just perfect for silhouettes. after thoroughly cleaning and completely shattering the glass in one of the frames, I used double sided tape to attach the silhouettes to paper and frame them.





what do you think? would you ever make these?


a simple tablescape.

for the Fourth of July, I threw a few red, white, and blue things on the table. we weren't hosting any parties or even home that day, but I wanted to do something. it wasn't anything fancy, but I liked it!





the next week, everything got pushed around and my patriotic tablescape disappeared. you see, sometimes [read: a lot of the time] our table acts as a catchall. after I cleared the thing off, I was ready for something different. a little more formal, yet very simple.

I had a picture in my mind of exactly what I wanted, so I set out to make it happen. we all know less is more and that phrase perfectly sums up what I had envisioned. here's the finished product:


I spread a strip of burlap across the table to use as my table runner. then I carefully placed some of my white dishes to make four place settings. after racking my brain for a centerpiece idea, I decided to use an old tool box that belonged to Drew's grandfather and fill it with white hydrangeas [my favorite]. I'm not sure if this is against "design rules," but you should know my flowers are fake. I adore fresh flowers just a much as the next girl, but I prefer to use fake when decorating because 1) they last longer and 2) they can be used over + over again in so many different ways.


after arranging the flowers just so, I went out to my front porch and snipped some pieces of boxwood. I rolled + fluffed a white cloth napkin through a silver napkin ring and tucked a boxwood snippet into the ring. I did this four times and set one at each place setting, then finished setting the table.



one of my favorite features of this tablescape is the silverware. instead of using our regular, matching silverware, I used antique [and some real!] silver I happened upon one day while antiquing with friends. the best part: it's mismatched! I didn't buy one complete set, but several different brands + designs of silverware. collecting antique silver is one of my new hobbies, as well as polishing silver. I know, kind of weird. but it's both relaxing and rewarding! you can see the results right before your eyes.



as for my drinkware, I decided to go for a simple + southern look. so naturally, mason jars were my glass of choice.

and there ya have it! my simple, almost effortless tablescape. what do you think?







the four year nanniversary.

long ago, before I began my career as a nanny, I did a stint in college. it was short-lived, and I thank God for that. unlike most, I didn't love college, and it didn't like me much either. after two universities, four semesters, six times changing my major, and zero motivation + direction, my college career ended. I'd be lying if I said I was upset about it. now or then. I've said it once and I'll say it again, school [specifically college] is not for everyone.

but the deal was, as my parents so gently reminded me: if I wasn't attending school, I had to work full time. this was completely fine with me because I'd been working [babysitting] since the age of 12 and had a steady job up until this point. so "work" was nothing new. in fact, by this point, I'd had eleven jobs in about a five year span. have you ever seen Gilmore Girls? think Kirk. my résumé is extensive, with work experience in fields including, but not limited to: salons, spas, sporting goods + retail, food + restaurant industry, and child care. I even worked at a fabric store for a day. literally one [1] day. when I realized there would be lots of measuring involved... well that's not really my thing, so that was the end of that. I like to think this work experience makes me well-rounded. but the story of my jobs is a story for another time.

in her Sunday school class, my mother had heard of a family in our church who was looking for someone to take care of their children. the hours were good, the pay was great, so I said, "SIGN ME UP!" I'm teasing--I had to go through a strenuous interview process, background check, physical fitness aptitude test, and extensive drug testing. kidding, again. I did meet with them and "interview" if you want to call it that. I liked them immediately. they were a sweet young couple with a little girl and a baby boy.


as I mentioned earlier, I'd been babysitting for years and I'd grown up with younger siblings around, so I felt as if I was readily equipped for such a job as this. in some ways, I was; but in others, I was not. I knew how to change diapers, I like to think I do a good job entertaining, I'm pretty responsible [not so much with academia, but definitely with humans]. I was set. I believe the thing I was most unprepared for is how deeply I'd fall in love with the family. I knew I would grow somewhat attached, but I could never have fathomed the depth.


two years into this gig, I was ready for another baby. I found another family in our church who'd just had a sweet baby girl earlier that year. I didn't know them well and I don't remember doing this, but one day at church I approached the mother and simply said, "I want to keep your baby while you're at work." for reasons unknown to me, she agreed and Charlie Claire has been a part of our group ever since.


in my small, twenty year old brain, I don't think I thought much about the future. I don't think I realized I would fall in love with this job and these people and that I might want to stick around for years and years. have you ever seen the Help? at the end of the movie, a man and his wife offer their housekeeper a job for the rest of her life, as long as she wants it. I've had that same conversation with mine. just call me Minnie. we often joke about me taking care of the children until they graduate high school.


when I first began nannying for them, Alayna was two and Andy was about nine months. when I began keeping Charlie Claire, she was about eight months. this fall, Alayna will turn seven and Andy will turn five. and on Charlie Claire's next birthday, she'll turn three. I cannot even believe that. they say time flies when you're having fun, so I must be having a ball.


I've loved this job from the very beginning. and now after four years, we've fallen into a wonderful routine. by the end of the week, I need the weekend. and by the end of the weekend, I'm telling my husband how much I miss my babies. it has, without a doubt, been the sweetest adventure. I've gotten to witness + be a part of first steps and first words, the transition from a crib to a big boy/girl bed, potty training, losing teeth, countless birthday parties, and so many other wonderful things. I've gotten to love on these babies and be a part of these families and it has blessed me in the richest of ways.

there are moments I feel as if I've caught a small glimpse of the kind of love a parent has for their child. moreover, I've gained a better understanding of our Father's love for usI know I won't be able to do this forever, and, as much as I plead with them, the children will grow up. but I'm so grateful for my time with them and all they've taught me and every minute spent together. it's been the best four years of my life. happy nanniversary to us, sweet babies! here's to four more.




the story behind the tiny white house.

ever since I was a little girl, I've loved everything about houses. I loved playing house, I loved arranging my room just so [still do--ask Drew], I loved drawing floor plans. you get the idea. long before the Pinterest era, my mother kept a notebook with pictures cut out from magazines filled with ideas she loved. from living rooms to bedrooms to Christmas decoration ideas, this binder held floor plans and was complete with subject dividers to organize all the dreams and ideas. I can't remember my exact age, maybe nine or ten, but I began to a keep a "housey notebook" of my own. I still keep one to this day.


I don't know what it is, but there is something about creating a home that I just can't get enough of. for some time, this bothered me. I felt, and still feel at times, that it's insignificant, and in the grand scheme of things, it doesn't matter much. but what I've come to learn is that God created me this way and placed this passion and knack for creating things deep in my heart. it's taken me years to realize, understand, and embrace this. because at the end of the day, do paint colors and throw pillows really matter? no. but I believe the Lord romances us by giving us little gifts in our hobbies + interests to use for Him, and even to bring us joy. in addition to my love for the home, I have a thing for white houses. my mom has always liked them too, so maybe it's genetic. whatever it is, I am drawn to them.


I've been married coming up on two years now and my husband and I live in a tiny white house. I happened upon it four months before our wedding and fell in love with it immediately. we've been here ever since. it's not perfect. the floors are slanted, it's only got one closet, there's no dishwasher [or rather, I am the dishwasher]... but it's home. it's got brick floors, thick trim, and lots of windows. it's cozy and comfortable, the place we embarked on the greatest adventure of all.


I know we won't be here forever. and I know that, unfortunately, there's no absolute certainty that we will always be living in a tiny white house. but I also know that the Lord always provides, and whether it's a shoebox apartment, a brick house, whatever... He will reveal what He has for us, where He wants us, and I'll have a ball making that 'home'.








"for every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God."
Hebrews 3:4

"and He determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that they would seek Him and perhaps reach out for Him and find Him, though He is not far from any one of us."
Acts 17:26-27

loss.

we're approaching the one year mark of my husband's precious mama's passing. she was truly a remarkable person with kind, blue eyes + the most gentle spirit. 

it has been the hardest year + experience I've ever been through. loss is the strangest thing... so final. and it happens whether you're ready for it or not. months after she was gone, I would be going about my day, doing my normal routine and it would hit me--oh yeah, she's gone. nighttime was the worst. every night before bed I would be reminded of something about her and tears would immediately follow.


eight months after her passing, Drew came home from work and he was visibly upset. he told me, "something happened at work and I thought mom would think it was funny. so I tried to call her. I couldn't find her in my contacts and I didn't know why and then I remembered." as soon as he told me, my eyes welled up with tears and I just sat there in silence weeping. eight months later and it's still. so. fresh.

along with the hurt, there is bitterness. this is not something I'm proud of, but I assume it is a natural part of the process. when others complain about their mothers in-law, I think, at least you have one. [disclaimer: I do have another mother in-law and for that, I am so grateful] once, I was meeting my sister for lunch with one of my friends. I can't remember what the scuffle was about, but my sister had done something that I did not like. "ugh I can't stand her," I confessed to my friend afterward. my friend, who had lost her only sister years earlier, replied, "at least you have a sister. be thankful for that." talk about feeling convicted. I'll never forget this lesson. and I now know that feeling so strongly. when I hear of others being diagnosed with, battling, or dying of cancer, I become enraged. it is so infuriating. in the same way, when I hear of others being healed, I become envious and question it. why them? why do they get to be healed? why didn't she? it's not that I don't want others to be healed, but I wanted that for her, too.

and there's anger. she should be here. she should get to see her little girl growing up. she should get to see her oldest daughter walk down the aisle one day. she should get to meet + hold her grand-babies. she should get to take care of her parents and husband. she should get to visit with her sister on the phone and exchange stories about their children. all these things we still need her here for--and she's not.

but somewhere, beneath the sadness, hurt, bitterness, and anger... there's hope. there's joy. there's thanksgiving. there's relief.

there's hope that we will see her again someday. there's joy that I got to love + be loved by her. there's thanksgiving. I am so grateful that I ever had the privilege of meeting her and becoming a part of her family. there's relief that she left us before her illness was too much... too much for her to even recognize us. more than that, there's relief that she is now whole.


things will never be the same without her. there will always be an ache in our hearts for her presence. but her spirit + memory live on forever. and one day, I'll get to tell my children about the amazing woman that was their grandmother. I can't wait for that.


"yes, we are fully confident, and we would rather be away from these earthly bodies, for then we will be at home with the Lord."
2 Corinthians 5:8

"You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book."
Psalm 56:8



photography by Allison Daniell of Stellar Propeller Studio + Houston Bass of Honest Photography

bedside table transformation.


this little side table belongs to my husband. it was purchased for his first college apartment just a few years ago. it is one of the pieces of furniture he brought into the marriage. it's been sitting in the corner of the spare bedroom, or man cave as Drew so affectionately refers to it, neglected for the past year.


truth be told, I'd never really looked twice at the thing. it wasn't ugly so it passed my inspection. but last weekend, I looked at it with fresh eyes and saw the potential. it's tiny. it probably wouldn't be tall enough to actually be a bedside table for our bed, as ours is on risers. but it's the perfect height to be a sidetable by the couch. and I can just picture it as a bedside table in a little boy's room someday.


I'm a fan of chalkboard paint. who isn't these days? I've done a few projects with it... painting over framed thrift store artwork, boards, and even cardboard to make chalkboards. I had never considered painting furniture with it, though. but something got into me last weekend and I decided to give it a try.


once again, I have no documentation of the process. but once again, it was fairly simple. I used Rustoleum Chalkboard Paint. I removed the drawer pulls, did a light sanding, and applied 2-3 coats of paint. I let it dry overnight. and the next morning, I "seasoned" it with chalk. I lightly rubbed chalk over the entire surface and then used a felt cloth to wipe it down. I was so happy with how it looked!



I also wanted to update the hardware on it. I think this is the thing I was most excited about. since I'm into gold these days, I decided to head in that direction for the drawer pulls. I've always loved the look of card catalogs, and even though this is clearly not a card catalog, I wanted it to have that feel. so I looked online for some pulls similar to that and found some at Home Depot. the most difficult part of this project was waiting for the drawer pulls to be delivered. I checked the order tracking obsessively. multiple times a day, every day, for a week. it felt like Christmas the day they arrived!



it could be an unconventional canvas to be drawn on [so it'd be perfect in a kid's room!], but I'd prefer it to not be used as a chalkboard. I just liked the slate gray appearance the chalkboard paint gave it. I'm so happy with the finished product and I hope you love it, too!




chalkboard paint: Rustoleum Chalkboard Paint | drawer pulls: Home Depot [online]

will you set the table?

one of my favorite things to do is set the table. rarely do we sit at our table--this is something we're working on. nevertheless, I love creating tablescapes for different seasons, events, and sometimes, for no reason at all.


since we're newlyweds, we observe most holidays with our families in their homes. that said, we won't be hosting anyone for Easter lunch. but even so, I wanted to create a light, springy tablescape. I found some pretty cloth napkins at HomeGoods when I was visiting my sister [the go-getter] and I thought they'd be perfect for the occasion!


these days, I'm a little bit obsessed with gold and spray painting things gold. I'm sure this is a phase, but lately, I just can't stop. usually it's some of my dollar store finds... faux pears, phone cases, miniature animals [giraffes, elephants, lions, & alligators, to be exact]. but for my spring tablescape, I thought it would be fun to spray paint some [faux] eggs. because who doesn't like golden eggs? I purchased them from Walmart, but they also have them at Michael's. I spray painted six little eggs, but I ended up only using four because I only had four place settings of the dishes I wanted to use. after I painted them and they dried, I set my table. I liked it, but the eggs needed something. they didn't look right just rolling around on those pretty floral napkins.



 THRONES. that's what they needed. so I googled egg cups to see where I could find some. as I googled this, I assumed there was a more technical term than "egg cup," but that's what they're really called! so, there's that. I found some cute scalloped ones online at Pier 1 for just $1.50 a pop. so naturally, I made plans to stop by and pick them up first thing in the morning. [I hardly slept that night because I was that eggcited about the egg cups.] then I had an idea to stick some moss in the egg cups to make them look like nests [?] because I thought that would look springy... I guess? I don't know, but I like the way my eggs look on their nest thrones.


so there you have it. my Easter tablescape. it's nothing fancy, but I'm pleased with the way it turned out. I hope you leave inspired, whether it's to set your table [it's great therapy, I promise] or to spray paint something gold [also great therapy] or to enjoy the table someone else has set.


and remember the reason we're celebrating, He is risen!


"He isn't here! He is risen from the dead, just as He said would happen." 
--Matthew 28:6





dishes: TJ Maxx | napkins: Ralph Lauren via HomeGoods | scalloped egg cups: Pier 1 | flatware: Oneida Louisiana 

the goodwill chair makeover.

one of my very favorite stores is the Goodwill. I can always find a treasure there, whether it's a worn antique couch [one of my best finds to date] or a chipped cake stand. treasure hunting--it's one of my favorites hobbies.

my sister moved cities last year after graduating from receiving her Masters [she's a go-getter, clearly] and started her first big girl job as a special education teacher. she needed a chair for the desk in her bedroom, so I kept my eyes peeled. after a few months, I came across this beauty at our Goodwill for just $9.99!


I loved the French cane backing and that's pretty much what did it for me. it needed a little paint + good reupholstering, but that wouldn't take much. so I bought it, brought it home, and immediately let it sit in my garage for about nine months. as you can see, I could take a few lessons from my go-getter sister.


this past weekend, I figured it was a good time to sand it down and get to work. I don't have photos of the painting or reupholstery process because 1) I just didn't take any and 2) it's really a simple process. anyone can do it. and I just used regular ol' latex paint because I don't mind sanding, but I do mind spending money. so until my husband hits it big, chalk paint is not an option.


the "fabric" I used is just a canvas dropcloth you can find at Home Depot. we used these for our wedding reception as tablecloths and they've been used since as curtains, ottoman covers, and now this. I used a staple gun to recover the seat. since this was my first "reupholstery" project, my craft veteran mom helped because the corners are a little tricky.


I did a light sanding, used about three coats of paint, roughed it up to give it a worn-ish look and here's what it looked like when I finished. 

I'm really pleased with it. it's simple, but classic. and I wish it was mine.



but to sister's house it goes!

the beginning.

well, after a looot [like a few years worth] of thinking and talking and praying about it, I finally decided to start a blog. it seems like a simple thing to do; but for some reason, for me, it seems terrifying. [because sometimes I’m a perfectionist so I wanted to do it totally right.] besides the whole not having a clue where to begin—which is the main reason for my delay, I’ve been afraid to put my words + thoughts out there. but I decided to bite the bullet and do it. and I’m so glad I did!

like I said, I know little about the blogging world. but I suppose this blog falls into the category of lifestyle blogs. this will be a place for fun(ny) stories + everyday adventures, photography [I use that term very loosely as I dabble in it], diy ideas + how-to’s—whether it’s a fun activity for kids or a furniture redo/something around the house, and the occasional recipe.

I’m excited to share a part of my little world with, y’all. hope you enjoy!