Life Lately

We've been slowly but steadily working to turn this house into something that feels like our home. I haven't had a lot of time to update you on the progress, but here are a few little peeks in the meantime! Above is a picture I snapped before a little dinner party we hosted with a few friends. I had some fun making a Fall tablescape with a few bunches of grocery store flowers, mason jars, and pretty ceramic pumpkins that were sent over by Grandin Road (I absolutely love their seasonal decorations! They always have the coolest stuff!) And I'm just looooving these gorgeous curtains that I got from Minted. I have been looking for curtains for the dining room forever, but I haven't found any that have made me want to pull the trigger. Then I saw these, and I just knew.

Lucy's room has been slowly getting a major transformation too! We  switched her over to the toddler bed and Violet to a twin when we switched houses. We painted the room (it was formerly like an army green), found a dresser on Craigslist, put her restickable dots from her nursery at the old house, on the wall, and purchased a rug. Next on the to do list is hanging her pom pom curtains from RH Baby & Child - they are blackout curtains and I'm sooo excited for that!!! (I'm hoping blackout drapes = sleeping in???)

Our living room has been coming along. We painted, installed hardwood floors, hung a gallery wall, and just bought a new couch! Hopefully I can snap a few better photos of that for you soon too. Lucy approves:

Sorry that's all I have for you so far, but between working full time, fixing up a house, and taking care of two beautiful babes, time to take photos is few and far between. And then there are times when I could be taking photos but I'd really rather be just staring at this gorgeous face:

(Can you blame me?!) Hope you're all have a lovely Fall! xo, Lauren

P.S. Grandin Road has a super cool pop up shop at Macy's in NYC. If you can't make it there they have a 360 tour that you can check out here. 

Playhouse Update


The exterior of the playhouse is moving right along! The cedar shingles and windows have been installed, and Kev's dad created some really amazing detail pieces for the peaks:

Next up: trim, window hinges, doors, and more paint. I feel like I need to get a paint sprayer for the inside though - it's going to be intense. All. That. Wood.

The funniest part of this is that girls are so over the whole finishing phase of the playhouse - they're already playing in it! I can't wait to fancy up the inside for them a bit though. We're loving the privacy it is already giving us, and we can't wait to plant our little vegetable garden behind it next year. Yay for fun new backyard getaways! xo, Lauren

A Playhouse Update

The playhouse is moving right along, thanks to the hard work of Kev and his dad. I can't even express my admiration for how they have worked from morning til evening day after day in the hot grueling sun. The middle of July is probably not the best time of year to be roofing. But they pushed on, and it is really starting to take shape. I'll tell you what, these are two very lucky little girls. When I asked Kevin to build a playhouse for them I imagined something much smaller and simpler. But he was smart and thought long-term. Not only will this have longevity for the girls as they grow, but when they officially grow "out" of using this space, we'll be using it as our garden shed (unless of course I take it over as my she-shed? Just kidding honey!) We'll be planting our vegetable garden at the back of the shed next summer, and I can't wait to be able to walk out the door and pick the produce that I need from our back yard. I really miss having a constant steady supply of juicy tomatoes at my fingertips.

At some points during the day Kev could barely even touch the roofing materials, it was so hot. They eventually got smart and worked on it in the evenings, but then after a while his dad would end up having to point a flashlight at the roof so Kevin could see!

We also got *almost* a coat of paint on the outside, and WHAT a difference. We're putting cedar shingles on sides of the peaks (they just came in today - hurray!), and I think we're going to leave those natural. The windows are going on, which I painstakingly painted. Normally I say you can never have too many windows, but not when you have to paint them all!

Still to come, the front will be getting a pergola, which I think we're going to leave natural, and there will be a Dutch door on the front, barn door on the back, and window boxes will all add pops of color. And then! And then. I get to decorate. I am SO excited. I've been collecting odds and ends from Craigslist and consignment shops with the girls and we have found some really fun stuff. Stay tuned, I think we're in the home stretch! xo, Lauren

Half Bath Update

We finally got around to adding a fresh coat of paint to the half bath, and what a difference already! When we moved in it looked like this:

Faux gold ceiling and sponge painted beige walls. It was really busy and dark. I added some art to try to spruce things up a bit, but who was I kidding?! Here are a couple of close-ups to give you a better idea of what we're dealing with:

A couple of coats of wall and ceiling paint later and...

Hurray! Light, airy perfection. Eventually this little space will get a new vanity/sink, and probably a new mirror and light fixture. For now, it's like a million times better, don't you think? xo, Lauren

P.S. The paint color is Behr Silver Drop, the same color we used in the kitchen at our first house.

Violet & Lucy's Playhouse: Week 1

This is a project we've been wanting to start for the girls for a long time, but we knew that we weren't going to be at our first house forever, so we waited. We were super excited when we finally found our forever home that we could make this a reality for the girls. Since we're thinking long-term, we decided to make a playhouse that had a future function when the girls have outgrown it. Kevin really misses his little vegetable garden from the old house (and I miss walking out the door when I need some fresh tomatoes!), so we decided to make the playhouse adult sized so that someday it can become a garden shed. We'll be planting a vegetable garden on the back side of the play house - it's a spot that gets a lot of sunshine and we thought it would be a great natural way to create some division to the yard for our little patch of veggies. Kevin and his dad have been working on it from morning til dinner for a week now and it's really starting to take shape!

The plan is to paint it white, with a wooden pergola off of the front, and some fun accent colors. The front door will *hopefully* be a Dutch door, and the back door will be a sliding barn door. We're also going to plant lots of pretty bushy flower and things around it. The girls are so excited to walk out the door every day and see it transform.

I'm crazy excited to decorate the inside. I'm kind of a freak like that. In this section we're going to paint, and probably add their play kitchen and some fun accessories:

On the opposite side, we're planning to build a lofted area with a ladder or some ship stairs and some sort of lounge area. The girls have requested beds. We've thrown around a bunch of ideas from suspended rope beds, a hammock, bunk beds, or even moving the toddler bed out here:

I seriously can't believe how hard Kev and his dad have been working on this thing, and I am so impressed with what they've done so far. Hopefully someday the girls will really be able to appreciate the hours and hours of hard work were put into creating this for them. We're three really lucky girls.

I'm planning on sharing some inspiration photos for the space tomorrow! xx, Lauren

Our Summer Bucket List: On the Farm


We're really lucky that my parents spend a lot of time with our girls. They get them almost every week for an overnight stay, and they do all kinds of fun things with them. Parks, playgrounds, pool time, tractor rides - you name it. They've also been helping the girls check things off of their summer bucket list. One thing the girls really wanted to do was "feed the ducks," so my parents took them to a farm down the road from their house where there are always a ton of ducks and geese. The farmer is fine with them feeding the animals and poking around, so they actually visit there pretty frequently.

Normally I'm not along to see their farm visits, but I hear about them a lot. Kevin and I usually use Nonny and Poppy time to have date nights and get things done around the house. This time though, I was excited to get some pictures! My dad is really into photography (I'm forever stealing his camera!), and I was really excited when he sent me a bunch of photos from their day. Thanks, Daddy!

That guy's expression totally cracks me up. And can you tell that long stars and stripes number is Violet's favorite dress?! She always wants to wear it to the most impractical places :) Total girly girl, through and through.

Speaking of the summer bucket list, I'm super excited to say that the play house build is in full swing! I can't wait to share some progress photos with you all soon. Hope you're all enjoying some simple summer fun! xo, Lauren

Ideas for Lucy's Room


Before we moved, I had started to update Lucy's nursery to a big girl room. Her new room is massively bigger than her old little slanted space, so I want to take what I started at the old house and basically add to it. The bed, rainbow stacking toy, fawn night light, cloud mobile, wall dot decals, and baby animal artwork, and pillows were all in her former bedroom. It looked like this:

For the new room, we need new curtains (the ceilings are a lot taller on our second floor than at our former house), a new rug (bigger floor space!), a bigger dresser, and a few more accessories. We can thankfully fit the beautiful glider that we got from RH Baby & Child up our new stairs (the old ones were such a problem!), so that will be in the space as well. She's still (and will always be!) my baby, and she still loves to rock with her mama for a while before going to sleep :)

Here are a few things I would love to have for her space:

Pom Pom Curtains
Striped Rug
Cloud Pillow
"Love" wooden sign
Happy Place wall art
Vintage Dresser
Bunny Knobs
Farmhouse Light

Right now I'm trying to find the perfect warm white for her walls and scouring Craigslist for a pretty (and hopefully inexpensive!) vintage dresser. Wish me luck! xo, Lauren

A Simple Summer Bucket List

I've been meaning to share our summer bucket list with you all, but I guess we're having too much fun checking things off for blogging! The girls and I worked on it together, and we wanted to keep it simple. You know, the good parts of summer:

We've already checked a bunch of things off of the list (not to say that we won't do some of them again!) Someone got the girls one of those crazy water balloon things that you see on TV where you can fill up like 50 water balloons in a few seconds, and the two of them went at it! At first it started off really tame. They kind of faced off duel style and took turns. One would turn around, the other would walk up and slam a water balloon into their back. After like five minutes of this I eventually suggested running around while throwing the balloons (they aren't very experienced in the world of water balloon fights apparently!) and they went crazy. Water balloon fight...check. Now we have to buy more of these amazing water balloons because it's all they every want to do.

Catching fireflies is always a little challenging, because they usually are in bed before it gets dark enough for the fireflies to come out. I'm all for bending the rules and schedules in the summer time, but they just get plain tired by like 7:30/8:00 at night. We got lucky the other night though because we stayed up specifically for the fireworks, and the park that we were in was absolutely covered in them. You could literally put your hands into the grass and scoop one right up - they were everywhere. It was pretty amazing. Not to mention the perfect sunset.

We got really lucky with the fireworks too. We ended up going on the 3rd of July - not quite as legit, but that's when our little part of town has their at the local park. The big display downtown was on the fourth, but we always like this one better. It's nice to pull up, lay out a blanket on the grass, and hang out instead of filing into a big crowded stadium. This year we were so thankful that we went this route because it was seriously the perfect night (see sunset shots above!) Fireflies, great temperature, beautiful sunset, perfect weather. The actually fourth of July ended up being a big bummer - really rainy and kind cold. I didn't get any pictures of the actual fireworks because Lucy got kind of manic (late bedtime, argh!) and was basically doing flips on me during the display, but I did get the cutest ever pic of the girls snuggling with their dad:

 I'll be sharing more bucket-list fun as we check things off the list! I'd love to hear what's on your summer bucket list! xo, Lauren

An Update on the Dining Room

Just going to leave this before and after here for your Friday morning viewing pleasure...

Our dining room when we moved in:

Our dining room today:

Amazing what a little paint and chandelier shade removal can do to lighten up a space! In other news, we finally got something hung on our dining room walls! I took some of the dyed fabric from my Shibori workshop and popped it into some frames. It definitely adds a little color and personality. We still want to get a wooden trestle table, some new chairs, and DIY some board and batten and maybe some light gray paint on the walls above to warm up the space, but this is a start! Happy Friday y'all!  xoxo, Lauren

An Update on Violet's Room

Please forgive the grainy photo! It was a quick snap with my iPhone. The last time we talked about Violet's room we were trying to figure out the best way to get her a cozy "nook" similar to the alcove in her bedroom at our former home. The winner turned out to be using curtains to sort of canopy her bed. Next we had to figure out if the layout of Violet's room would allow us to actually do this. The other day we tested out a few furniture arrangements to see what would work best.

After we had all of the major furniture pieces in place, I took a pair of curtains and hung them from the ceiling using some string and tape (classy looking, I know!), to see if we liked the look. Violet was a little upset at first about the idea of her furniture being shifted around (change is hard, even if it's wanted change!), but when she saw this she gasped and said, "It looks so pretty in here, Mommy!" I knew we had a winner. I'm planning for longer drapes, a framed out top, and four panels rather than two. Here area  few of my inspiration images:

I really love the look of the built-in bookcase in the above photo, but unfortunately there is a vent that prevents a bookcase from happening without a lot of extra work (Kev has enough on his plate as it is!), so I don't think that will work in Violet's room. I'm trying to keep this as low-maintenance as possible because I know he already has so much planned for this summer.

The colors in the photo above are so pretty, and so Violet. She's a purple and pink fan forever. In fact, she wants to keep the current purple wall color of her room, so we're probably just going to paint the trim and maybe the ceiling. I also love all of the pattern and the fact that the curtains are lined with a contrasting color/design.

Love this space too! So fun with the punchy colors and kid art. I definitely want to include some of Violet's artwork in the space (you can see one of her many rainbow paintings in the photo up above). What I'm trying to decide currently is what color fabric/curtains I want to use. Should I stick with white with a fun tassel or pom pom trim? Or maybe go with a more bold color? What do you think?xo, Lauren

Images 1 . 2 . 3. 4

Image 1 Credit: A Lovely Lark
Image 2 Credit: Trevor Tondro
Image 3 Credit: Melanie Acevedo
Image 4 Credit: Lily Z Interior Design
*I hope all of these are correct - I pinned them long ago and some of them are no longer visible on these sites.

Little Summer Style Favorites


Here are a few things that the girls are wearing now that the weather is (finally!) warm...

Floral Surf/Water Shoes - are these not the cutest water shoes you have ever laid eyes on?!
Sunglasses - love these - comfy, cheap, go with everything.
Kitty Cat Sandals - Violet loves kitty cat shoes. She has probably had some form of cat shoes since she was two years old. Luckily I keep finding them so she keeps wearing them.
Flamingo Headband - flamingo. headband. Need I say more?
Tutu Dress - we have this in multiple colors! It is seriously so adorable and we got them on sale at 40% off so it was a fab deal
Flower Hairties - we got these a year or two ago and the girls literally argue daily over who gets to wear them!
Striped Rainbow Maxi Dress - Violet loves rainbows and maxi dresses, so this was a no-brainer.
Ruffle Swimsuit - the toughest thing about this suit is deciding which color to buy! So flippin' cute.
Natives Perforated Slip-on Shoes - the girls wear these constantly in the warm months. They are great because they can get wet, they're super comfy and act like sneakers for playing at the park, but they don't get smelly if the girls wear them sans socks.
Rosette Swimsuit - Violet always requests flowers on her swimsuit, plus as a bonus this one comes in her favorite color
Rainbow Striped Skater Dress - the girls seriously live in skater dresses over the summer. Our favorites are from H&M and American Apparel.
Flower Power Headband - this was a birthday gift and Violet loves, loves, loves it.
First Gloss Hunter Rain Boots - so they can jump in muddy puddles "just like Peppa"

Things I Like

I have a new "Things I like" section that I added (you can access it anytime via the "THINGS I LIKE" link at the top of the blog). A few other bloggers that I follow have this feature and I love it. You can click on any of the photos and it will take you to the product. There are affiliate links included.

1/2 Kitchen Reno: Inspiration

So we're currently in the midst of a half kitchen renovation. One side of the kitchen has an island complete with barstools graciously left behind by the previous owner and a baby poo brown crackly accent wall. I'm kicking myself that I don't have a better straight-on photo of this wall in all its glory, but it is what it is. Regret is for the weak, right?

We aren't ready time or budget-wise to do a full kitchen reno, but we've decided that we just can't live with this look a minute longer. Here's the plan that we came up with on a budget:

1. SHIPLAP. I miss our wood plank backsplash wall from the kitchen of our previous house, so we decided that this would be the perfect place to add a splash of shiplap. The wall is recessed on both sides, so we won't have to come up with any awkward solution for the ends or anything.

2. Redo the island. We want to cut down the island to one height (right now it's part counter-level and part bar-level), replace the countertop with some sort of reclaimed wood/butcher block, and paint it. I'm leaning toward black at the moment. We have a LOT of white going on in the house so far and I love the drama of a little splash of black here and there.

3. New stools and dramatic lighting. I'm not sure what style of seating we're going to go with for sure, but I'm definitely leaning toward something with a back for comfort purposes. I really like the metal cafe/Tolix look, or some sort of bentwood stools. Lighting-wise I'm also torn. I love more traditional fixture like this and this, but also could see myself going more modern like this or this. Or maybe something in between? Decisions!!! Which way would you go?

Image sources: 1 . 2 . 3


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