mama’s new friend

i am slightly obsessed with new furniture.

which is why i am slightly obsessed with new furniture for cheap.

which is why i am slightly obsessed with ikea.

allow me to introduce you to my newest furniture friend…

the hemnes bookcase from ikea.

isn’t she pretty?

i love it!

i must admit when i assembled her in the living room late one night, i was a little intimidated & afraid she wouldn’t fit.

but she did! i couldn’t be happier & ava bean loves it too!

now, we have all sorts of space for her special things…

all of her babies & their “things” fit happily in the canvas totes on the bottom…

her stuffed animals that are sadly never played with, but mommy can’t let them go, b/c they are special, are hiding happily in these brown baskets i scored on clearance for like $4 each at lowes of all places way back in the day…they’re pink on the inside…pink!

her carefully painted ceramic tribute to her lovie, “claire,” rests safely on her most special books…her very first big girl bible, the miraculous journey of edward tulane & charlotte’s web (some of mommy’s favorites)

remember that, aunt julie? she had such a fun time!

i still have to put a few special pictures in her frames (also from ikea) & add the rest of her big girl chapter books to the top shelf, but other than that, it’s complete!

go ahead, get yourself one too – they’re on sale!

7 to 7

7 am…

quiet house.
everything in its place.
dusted shelves.
no fingerprints or crumbs.
clean tables, floors, & countertops.
clean everything.
not a scrap of food nor toy in sight.
freshly showered – wet pony tail, dry clothes.
7 pm…

it’s a mom’s life, & i love it.

congratulations on making it through monday, friends.


making our home our sanctuary

Protect Your Children in the Storms

Reverence for God gives a man deep strength; his children have a place of refuge and security. -Proverbs 14:26

Life is full of storms that batter us, bruise us, and beat us up. Life is very tough, and we all need a place of safety, security, peace, and protection. God has planned that our homes be that place.

There are all kinds of storms that come into our lives, but here are three every one of us will experience:

Change. From day to day, relationships change, jobs change, our health changes, where we live changes. Studies tell us that too much of any change — positive or negative — is stressful. So we need a place of security and support, where we know everything is going to be the same.

Failure. Nobody wins all the time. Sometimes you get passed by for the promotion, you don’t make the team, or you fail the test. And it hurts. But failure is more bearable if you’re coming home to hugs, if you know that when you get home, you’re going to be encouraged.

Rejection. Everyone knows what it’s like to feel criticized, pushed away, or not allowed to be part of the “in” crowd. A lot of that starts on the playground, where kids can be mean, laughing at the flaws of others and making fun of those who seem different. Coming home to acceptance and love helps children through the storms.

How do you build a home that can be a shelter in a storm?

Hear. Listen to the people in your family. Don’t be too quick to come up with a solution before they even get the words out of their mouths. Sometimes they just need to vent or tell you how they feel.

Hug. Express affection. Do the things that say “I love you.”

Hope. Build up the people in your family with affirmation. Make sure you’re giving good input to balance all the negative they hear outside your home.

Help. Make sure that you do whatever it takes to get help when your family is going through a tough time. Unhealthy families ignore their problems or they say, “We can make it without help. We don’t need anyone else’s input. We’re not talking to anybody about this. We can handle it” — or worse, they say, “What problem?” Healthy families are willing to look at themselves realistically and say, “We’re having a tough time right now, and we need some help.”

You may not be able to protect your children from the storms of life, but you can help protect them in the storms of life by making your home a place of security and support.

~Paul Phillips’ “Daily Blessing” for today, May 3rd

welcome home…

things have felt a little heavy lately, so i thought i’d perk it up a bit & show you some of my favorite “homey” things…

so…welcome to our little home…

for starters, you’ll see that i am a “maxxinista.” yes, ma’am.
i would choose to meander aimlessly through tj maxx any day.
you don’t even have to go in there with something specific in mind, b/c it’s like a little treasure trove.
that’s the blessing & the curse, b/c you can also walk out of there with a gazillion things you probably didn’t really need…

any who…i stumbled upon these panels shortly after moving into our home.
there just happened to be two left & i fell in love with them…
they have served as the springboard for the rest of our living room decor.

pitchers. white pitchers. i adore unique, white pitchers. the flower one was yet another tj’s find.
it’s adorable & so dainty. i’ve yet to ever see another piece like it.
the taller pitcher was my birthday gift this year from my girls.
mr. wonderful took them to the local pottery joint & decorated it with their precious little feet, hand & finger prints.
adore. adore. adore.

this next one is of a little project of mine – i used to sell uppercase living vinyl decals & yep, they could go on lampshades!
this one is in avey’s room.
it went perfectly with her decor & it gave me an opportunity to try something i had never done before.

knobs. i am obsessed with knobs. especially ones i can score at anthro on clearance – yippee!
i found these three before i had even gotten pregnant & stashed them away for use in a girlie nursery or bathroom. so glad i did, b/c i think all three together came to less than $8 – often the price of just one.

if you’ve never attempted this before, it’s a very simple project. just measure & mark your spots (use a level), drill a hole a little smaller than the diameter of the screw, insert a plastic expansion anchor (of the right size), & simply screw the knob into the anchor.
easy stuff & check out how cute!

this was the very first outfit i bought when we found out we were having a baby & a framed four-leaf clover from my mom…we find four-leaf clovers like craaazy in this family, yet we’re probably the two unluckiest people you’ll ever meet. 😉

more incredible anthro knobs – also from the clearance bin – it’s like hitting the lottery for this mama.

a few more things from the girls’ rooms that i am especially fond of…

ava’s curtains. the cheapest curtains EVER. ikea, baby. (ikea’s “wilma” curtains) they are super sheer & soft.
perfect for a baby’s sanctuary.

she & the cat constantly played around in them & i was afraid they’d come crashing down, so i tied them in these loose knots & they’ve stayed that way ever since.

another favorite piece & project – an antique mirror & angel plaques that i painted silver for isla’s room…

ah yes – another glorious tj find…two wall plate racks.
they completely screamed pottery barn to me.
i bought them both for about $15 each & they serve as towel racks in each of the bathrooms.

ok – i probably should have just called this “the tj maxx post,” b/c i apparently found a lot of my favorite things there!
it’s true…recently, i had been holding out, looking for the perfect lamp for our bedroom & discovered it last week.
i haven’t taken a pic of it yet though.

our living room end tables are these great nesting tables i happened upon there as well & got all three for under $80.
you just can’t beat their unique finds & great prices…
keep in mind, these purchases have been over the course of four years…

this mirror was only $20 – love it!

last, but certainly not least, the item i have had the longest (of these) & probably my husband’s favorite – ferns from the spot on the park trail where he proposed that overcast, rainy afternoon of october 22nd, 2006…

some scrapbook paper, a beautiful frame, ink, stamps, & some very special foliage…

“dream. love. believe.”

so that’s a little taste of our world…

from what spots in your home do you draw inspiration???

do you think i could be compensated for all of the plugs in this post??? 😉