abby’s woodland nursery

It’s official: my BFF is expecting a baby BOY in February and I. am. so. excited! Seriously, can’t wait to squeeze and kiss that little guy. In hopes of putting some productivity behind my excitement, I asked Abby if I could put together a little Inspiration Board for baby B’s nursery. *Please note: she had nothing to do with these choices, and she may think they’re totally crazy, so if you hate it, blame me. :)

Abby’s husband, Ben, is a hunter and fisher extraordinaire, so she’s thinking of going with a woodsy vibe for the little man, which I love. She already has bedding and a paint color (Sherwin Williams’ Rain, which I’m clearly a fan of) picked out, so I had fun digging up a few accessories.

1) I love the cute and colorful for kids, but still pretty and artistic vibe of these Charley Harper memory cards from Anthropologie, and I think they would be pretty adorable pinned to a bulletin board or framed.

2) Also from Anthropologie is this awesome mushroom pouf. Yes, it’s $168. No, I don’t actually expect her to buy it. But man, is it cute.

3) I love that I am so confident that this little guy will be pointed toward Scripture from the day he arrives. I think this is such a great verse for little boys, and I like how it would mesh with the rest of the room.

4) So, admittedly, this is a little boy, and I have a feeling he will not care at all about how his nursery is decorated, but he will appreciate some fun toys to play with. This would make both mommy and baby happy.

5) I love the rustic look of these rolling crates, and I’m sure portable storage will be nothing but helpful. As a bonus, crates like these are pretty easy to  find inexpensively at yard sales and flea markets.

6)  This “family rules” sign has been floating around Pinterest lately and, while I don’t think I would copy it word for word, I like the idea of a similar sign with a verse or favorite quote.

7) I’m generally not a huge fan of wall decals, but these remind me of this awesome nursery that was featured on ohdeedoh. A little less frilly, a little more graphic.

8) Since the bedding that Abby picked out features animals, I would probably recommend against going for any cartoony fabric elsewhere in the room. That being said, I think a couple of throw pillows would be great for softening up the room. I like the idea of using flannel shirts (possibly even dad’s old ones) to over pillows. As a bonus, the buttons make for a cute detail and super simple sewing!

*9) So I didn’t have time to round this last one up, but I think a red lantern-style light would be perfect for on top of a dresser.

Can’t wait to meet Baby B! February will be here before we know it!

i feel the earth. move. under my feet.

We sort of had an earthquake yesterday. Technically, it was more of the result of an earthquake that happened in Virginia, but it sure was enough to get everyone talking. When it happened, I was sitting at a computer sending out an e-mail to the 7th grade parents. my computer and desk started shaking, and I immediately started looking around for the kid who was spastically jiggling his leg. When I didn’t find one, I just assumed that the 6th graders were doing something crazy downstairs. Apparently a typical day at the office feels a whole lot like the world is shaking.

In related news, this has been floating around Pinterest, and it kinda cracks me up:

In the seemingly random spirit of earthquake-having, here are a few more random bits for you:

I am loving Target’s new line of back-to-school ads featuring teachers, the gym teacher in particular. I keep telling Zach that this is him:

I borrowed this from a friend (thanks, Robin!) over the summer and loved it. Such a substantial, meaningful book- I have since bought my own copy and plan on reading it approximately 20 more times. Can’t remind myself of the beauty of the Gospel enough. (That being said, please excuse the slightly cheeseball cover.)

Image via Amazon

I also read The Help this summer, and Zach recently took me to see the movie. While it wasn’t quite as fantastic as the book (does that ever happen?), I still really enjoyed it. I felt like the casting was spot-on. So many of the characters looked just the way I had pictured them. As a whole, definitely recommend it.

Image via

Alright, I’m off to finish the demolition of a bag of Trader Joe’s pita chips and hang out with my husband. Which leads me to one final bit of randomness- this cute quote that I found on Pinteret.

It makes me happy.


you lie like a rug

Ok, this post has nothing to do with lying. Just trying to keep the rug puns going.

Backing up a little bit: you might think it’s strange that we took a little shopping trip for house stuff when we’re hoping to move soon. Admittedly, I had the same thought…for a fleeting moment before I jumped out of bed in excitement. The moving process kept us from making larger purchases at Ikea and Mary Jo’s, but I was able to justify our Pottery Barn Outlet purchase for a few reasons:

1) We’ve actually already sold a few pieces of furniture on Craigslist in preparation for the move. We had decided earlier to keep a tally of all of the money we brought in through sales, and that money would go toward things we were hoping to get for the new house (a bigger rug was at the top of the list). As a bonus, since this one was cheaper than any of the other options we had been considering, we have more funds to devote to #2 on the list (a new mattress).

2) Yes, it’s a rug. And there is a chance that our next house will have carpeting. But, the only color of carpeting that we would consider keeping would be cream or white, and since our couch is a natural/off-white color, we’ll want a rug to keep everything from blending into one cream-colored blob.

3) Even though the rug we ended up with is pretty big (11X14), the traditional style of our current house means our living room is about the same size or a little smaller than what we’ll probably end up with.

4) If for some reason we’re totally off base on one of the above thought processes, the rug we bought was such a great deal that I’m pretty confident (from months of Criagslist rug browsing) we can list it and get our money back.

The first rug that we pulled off the shelf was an 8X10 of the Adeline rug. While 8X10 was more of the size we were expecting to go for, and the price was decent (I think it was $250), I just couldn’t really get on board with the dark colors.

Though the size of the Kate rug was a bit bigger than I had planned on getting, the color scheme had me at hello.  Also, as a bonus, I love that the picture on PB’s website shows it in a room that it amazingly close in color scheme to ours.

And just because PB can give you a better close-up shot than I can, here’s the swatch:

Do you see that? It basically incorporates every color that is currently on the walls in the downstairs of our house. Crazy perfect. In my opinion, it’s even better than the options I had scoped out online, because I’m not boxed in to one color. (And, to be honest, most of the colors I would choose are in this rug.)

The other bonus is that the rug is actually made up of lots of little loops (as opposed to cut pile), similar to the Dash and Albert rug. The Dash and Albert website says that it’s this feature that makes the rug good for high-traffic spaces, so I’m hoping the same will be the case for our little beauty.

So, here she is in all her “I’m actually the right size for this space” glory:

We’re excited to have found a great, less expensive solution. We’re so happy with how the rug is working out, both for now, and for later!

we had the rug pulled out from under us

Alright, just keeping it real here: there’s a possibility that I may have had to Google that expression to make sure I got it right. I blame the fact that my brain is still adjusting to grown-up work days.

After our fun stops at Ikea and Mary Jo’s, we headed down to Gaffney, South Carolina, for a little outlet shopping. More specifically, for a little Pottery Barn Outlet shopping.

Alright, before we move any further, remember when I mentioned my slight annoyance with our highwater state of our living room rug? It definitely wasn’t any kind of emergency, but the insufficient size in comparison to the room bugged me on a regular basis. Of course, I didn’t want to break the bank for something that was definitely more personal preference than necessity, so I began browsing.

I started with Craigslist, but given that I was working with pretty specific parameters (8X10 or larger and a color scheme that would work with the room), I didn’t have much luck. (Thankfully, though, I was able to find a deal that helped contribute some funds.)

After my CL dead-end, I decided to do a little online browsing (aka filling up my Pinterest board with a zillion rugs). Here’s a sampling of what caught my eye:

In my earlier post, I mentioned pondering a black and white rug to add a more graphic element to the room. I really like the chevron on this one (from Rugs Direct) and the price isn’t too over-the-top.

Although I’m definitely a fan, I was a little unsure of how the stark white zig zags would jive with the more natural tones of our couch.

The quatrefoil pattern of this next one kind of sent me over the top. Love. it.

The tricky part is, while it apparently used to be sold as an area rug, I can only seem to find it in the 2’X3′ entry mat size.

Admittedly, this next one was my favorite. We all know that I love me some Dash and Albert, and the color and pattern of this one is just perfect. Plus, I love that it’s especially good for high-traffic areas, given that our living room is very…well, lived in.

Unfortunately, even though I figured out a way to drive it down with coupon codes, the $814 price tag was a little hard to stomach. I don’t want to spend so much on a rug that I’ll fret over every little dog hair or cracker that lands on it. (But I’ll be honest- I hoping to use the smaller, aka cheaper version, somewhere in our next house.)

So the online search was a little bit of a bust. Thankfully, our little escapade helped us out in a very big way. Pictures soon to come!


field trip

We have officially survived our first “week” of school (technically, the kids got here last Wednesday), and things have been great. The kids are sweet, and it’s nice to be back in a routine. However, I would be lying if I said that part of me doesn’t miss waking up when there is actually light outside and taking random field trips with my favorite person in the world.

On that note, let’s do a little reminiscing, shall we?

Earlier this summer, Zach woke me up one morning and said, “Today we’re going to Ikea. And the Pottery Barn Outlet, and to that fabric place.”

I think I’ve mentioned that he is amazing.

So, we grabbed a couple of snacks and headed out on our mini road trip (these three places, while within about 45 minutes of each other, are around 3 hours from our house).

Our first stop was Ikea, which I managed to get through rather quickly, since I had been keeping a mental Ikea wish list since…the last time we went.

I picked up a few of these:

And stocked up on these:

I think I’ve mentioned these before, but I’m a big fan of these dish towels. We really try to use as few paper towels and napkins as possible, so these come in handy a lot. Plus, they’re relatively inexpensive, so there’s no getting upset if one gets a nasty stain.

Our next stop was the legendary Mary Jo’s cloth store in Gastonia, visited by such celebrities as John and Sheri of the amazing Young House Love. While I actually left the store empty-handed (since we’re not exactly sure where we’ll be living in the next few months), there were definitely several bolts I had my eye on.

This dandelion print was not only happy looking, but it (or its powder blue twin) also would fit in rather nicely with the rest of our house.

It’s actually a Thom Filicia fabric, sold for $44.99 a yard here. The Mary Jo’s price was $24.99 a yard- hooray!

I was also a big fan of this next print, which I’m pretty sure is a dead ringer for Pottery Barn’s Simone fabric ($30/yard).

I love it for a dining room- especially one that it open to the rest of the house. It’s such a great way to tie together colors from several different rooms. The price difference wasn’t quite as drastic, but the Mary Jo’s price was $17.98- not too shabby.

I really like the texture (and the colors- no big surprise) of this next fabric. Can’t remember if it was thick enough for upholstery use, but how cute would a chair be covered in this?

One tip: even though we didn’t buy anything on this particular visit, I was careful to take pictures of the label of fabrics I was interested in so I could remember them later and do a little price comparison.

This dog print is absolutely fabulous. Mark my words: Zoe will have a bed made out of this cuteness.

Our final stop was the Pottery Barn outlet where, expecting to bring back a frame or two, we actually returned home with something rather…gargantuan. I’ll be back soon to wrap up this little excursion recap!

bow holder tutorial

Well, hello August.

Is it just me, or did this summer fly by faster than any summer before in the history of time? We started teacher workdays this week, and kids will be joining us on Wednesday. Where did June and July go?

Since I’ve bombarded you with trip recaps recently, today I thought I would share an easy how-to for an organization challenge a friend and I recently tackled.

She has two very sweet, very girly girls, and with girly girls come adorable, girly hairbows. Lots of them. While keeping them in a bathroom drawer was working, she was looking for a way to display them that would be both stylish and functional. Most of what she found looked like this:

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not knocking the tutu. I think we all know that I love a good tutu. But, since we both lean toward more of a kid-friendly, but grown-up aesthetic, the ballerina motif didn’t really mesh with the vision. After we gave it some thought, I suggested a modification on my beloved chalkboard frame revamp. Here’s what we came up with:

I found this frame at a yard sale for $1 (such a great place to find frames and other things that just need a little spraypaint love), and, while I wasn’t a fan of the glued-on ocean print, I was a fan of the fun detail on the frame itself.

While I didn’t really mind the color of the frame, it didn’t exactly say “little girl”. Thankfully, a couple of coats of high-gloss Rustoleum later, that problem was solved.

(One note: I’ve found that with the frames I’ve done, the white paint can highlight hairline cracks that were masked with the darker paint. There’s always the option of filling them, but we didn’t mind them since they meshed with the vintage look of the frame.

I saved the cardboard piece that the picture was glued to to use as the backing of the bow holder. To give it a little extra fluff and cushion, I first stapled on a layer of batting.

Next, I stapled on the fabric. I happened to have this left over from a planned chair reupholstery in the former craft room, and we were so excited to discover that it fit right in with the rest of the style of the house!

After the fabric, I secured three grosgrain ribbons to attach the bows to. I lined up the first one with the center of the board, then found the center of each of the side sections to find the spots for the other two ribbons.

The final result is a place where two stylish little ladies can have easy access to their favorite hairclips and bows.