Thursday, January 31, 2013

The "Downside" of Having a Decor Blog!

I'm obsessed with decorating
And people tell me I'm good at it.
Naturally I should write a blog, right?
And I should have a FB page to go with it!
And I should check out everyone else's home decor FB pages right?
Wow! A lot of them are so incredibly talented!
Ooohh and a lot of them have online shoppes... heard that. That "dun dun dunnnn".
The sound of impending economic upheaval.
My wallet cringing.
But I have to support other fellow bloggers and small business owners I tell myself.
I have to get some extra goodies so I can take pics, for the blog~it's mostly for the blog.
My readers want to see new things, new ideas...
Yea, I have convinced myself.
So with credit card in hand I delve into the online boutiques and become entangled in a passionate affair with Etsy.
It's ok I tell myself. Someday I'll be featured in Country Living and I won't feel guilty about my purchases...Who am I kidding?~ I know I'd be buying the same amount of stuff even if I didn't have a blog.

But maybe Country Living better call soon...just to make me feel better ;-)

 See that tiny pink blurb on the wreath on the left? That's the meagre beginning to my Valentine mantle. One tiny pink heart that I forgot to remove for the pic :)

"Nest" and bird pillows from gracioushome


 And these are the scratches in my paint that I uncovered when I moved the mirror further down the wall. It just looks soooo much better there, I tell my hubby. And the search for the perfect paint to match begins. All in the name of progress!

My "Paris" table runner from yes it needs ironed, shhh.

Pillow from

<3 melissa
So excited to be sharing this at Treasure Hunt Thursday #93 & Highlights

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The School of Life

~ My sweet little 11 year old mini man makes my heart swell.
He's the only one of my three school age boys that loves it. He cried so hard on the last day that I thought he would hyperventilate. "I don't want to go to Florida mom, why can't they have Summer school?" "I'm going to miss my teachers." Drip, drip~the sound of my heart melting.

~ This year he decided to take an extracurricular French class. The first day he was so excited, mostly for the fact that they ate "lots of French snacks".  But today he came home and asked if they award scholarships in French. I assured him they do, to which he replied; "Well that's what I'm gonna do mom, get a scholarship in French!"

~ "Would that make you proud of me?"


Once upon a time I was told I would probably never have children.  It's days like today that all the struggle, tears, pleading and even despair seem so insignificant, such a tiny blip of a memory. Now I can see God smiling back then, knowing that one day my own little boy would declare he wants to try to secure a scholarship in French and if that would make me proud of him. Today God reassured me that my struggle wasn't in vain, that He heard my cries and He knew one day that all the pain would be lost in a sea of curly blonde hair and in innocent, smiling brown eyes.

Je t'aime Noah, Je t'aime.


Friday, January 25, 2013

My Valentine

I was fortunate enough to meet my soulmate at age 8, he was 14. He was my brother's best friend and called my parents "mom" and "dad" long before they were his inlaws.

I watched him graduate high school, Army boot camp and Washington & Jefferson College long before we dated. I remember  at age 12 or 13, laying on my bedroom floor with my best friend Maralee, declaring that I would marry him.

I stood on the beach, at nearly 17, and asked God aloud to make him mine. It worked and we began dating shortly thereafter. He took me to my Senior prom and attended my high school graduation. And one October night in 1990, he knelt down in a park at Pitt University and asked me to marry him.

He graduated dental school and was pulled to active duty unexpectedly. At 18 I married him and off we moved to Fort Bragg NC and began our married journey together.

We have enjoyed 21 years and  4 beautiful  boys.  We have endured my suffering from manic depression for nearly all of our marriage and 2 bouts of severe PPD that required weeks of hospitalization. He has spent countless sleepless nights comforting me. He watched me nearly die giving birth to our last baby when my blood pressure soared from pre~eclampsia, then crashed to 43/20. He's written me poetry, remodeled my 180 year old dream house, worked tirelessly building 2 dental practices and has been the best father to our sons.

In all, he has been my Prince Charming and fulfilled the vows he made to me faithfully and with an ever joyful and optimistic attitude.

Some people overlook Valentine's Day as a silly Hallmark driven holiday full of pressure to buy unnecessary gifts and sappy cards. I see it as a day to remember and give thanks for the love of my life and the romance I asked God for on that beach nearly 23 years ago.

Happy Valentine's Day <3

                   ~Via Pinterest

Happily sharing this at   Feathered Nest Friday

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Puppy Dog Tales

Oh Lucy, my sweet, sweet Lucy... Where shall I begin?

Let's see, she is, at eleven or so weeks, growing beautifully, healthy and very happy. She adores her fellow four~leggers and all of our boys. She's a snuggly little bundle of love. Really, she is. And I am glad she is ours. Really.

At the same turn, I may have been temporarily insane when I brought a puppy home to four boys, two dogs, one cat and a couple of fish. I mean, I have a teenager and a two year old~what was I thinking? 

This morning I arose to find my favorite Nate Berkus pillow destroyed...

She is slowly nibbling away at my hall carpet...

And yesterday she pulled a pair of my panties out of the laundry and dropped them at my mother in law's feet. I was mortified.

And just when I've had enough, she looks at me with that face. Ya know "that" face. Head cocked to the side, eyes all glassy and as innocent as a newborn's. I melt. I squeeze her and smooch her and tell her "I didn't really like that pillow anyway."

Saturday, January 19, 2013

2013 Rest Not Resolve

Do you have goals for your home in 2013? Are they specific or general? Organization, remodeling, redecoration, landscaping? Sometimes it all feels so daunting. Sometimes I don't wanna set goals anymore. Sometimes I just wanna take a year off. Living in 180 year old house I honestly can't imagine an entire month without a project, much less a year!

I suppose maybe it would be better this year to forego goal~setting and just relax and enjoy my home. Whatever growth comes will come naturally. What a refreshing plan. To actually enjoy my home, no pressure, no list hanging over our heads. Time to put aside all the "if only this were done" or "if I could just afford to.." and actually give thanks, consciously, as a daily practice, for what I've already been given and accomplished.

I want to plant flowers for my and my family's enjoyment and to bring beauty into the world, not because I worry about what my neighbors think of my yard. It's time to just sit on the porch with a glass of lemonade and watch the boys play in the yard without thinking "I have to pull those shrubs out and plant a new boxwood hedge", or "if we planted more trees and put in a privacy fence we will feel better." Granted, we may feel better if we did that but not when we feel pressured to do it. Not to scratch one thing off the to do list only to add five more.

I will definitely continue to do projects, out of necessity and plain desire. But from now on, with more of a conscious effort to do the projects out of love for our home and family. To give thanks for what is already in front of me. To stop grasping and bloom where I am planted.


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

My Winter Mantle

After all the Christmas is put away I always love to bring in some decorations for Winter so everything doesn't look so bare.

I just purchased some lovely, vintage frames from a friend's antique shoppe and  some adorable silver deer from the after Christmas clearance at Crate and Barrel.

I added in some greens, pinecones and mercury glass votive holders.

Then I got the Ballard Design catalog and decided that it needed something more..

So I picked up some sweet burlap wreaths, also on after Christmas clearance!

I will be putting a chalkboard in one of the frames and I have an adorable "Love" banner that should be here in a few days.

I really like the way it turned out...

We originally had above the mantle painted the same as all the walls~ 

But I wanted it to be white so it appeared that the molding went all the way to the crown molding. 
I also thought it would allow my accessories to really stand out~

After it was painted white~
Note my newly purchased vintage apple ladder to the left of the mantle, I'm in love!

~Also note the big, blank square that was from my Christmas mantle. I took down the wreath and hung it on the wall. I purchased the cutest letter "O" and some burlap ribbon to hang on there :)

And it turned out like this~ 

Now back to my mantle...  I added some accessories~

And a few more~

And ~

Now back to my ladder! I picked it up at the same shoppe where I purchased the frames.  I plan on hanging linens from the rungs.
Here's a better pic, before it found it's home next to the mantle ~

What a fun way to start the New Year! More projects to come very soon. ~Melissa

Sunday, January 13, 2013

The Blessings of Family

Today was a day of celebration. My little great nephew, Maddox, was baptized.
Spending the day with my sisters and all their children and grandchildren was amazing. God has blessed us in so many ways.
We spent the afternoon feasting and catching up, taking pictures and sharing stories. It was a day we won't forget.

Tonight Tim and I meandered around JoAnne Fabrics searching for the perfect fabric for my laundry room inspiration board.
I had just about given up and was leaving the fabric section when Tim found just the right one. It's awesome when he does that. He has amazing taste and one thing I lack; patience...

I picked up some burlap ribbon for a wreath in the living room and a box to store the kids' video game controllers.  We checked out drop cloths at Home Depot to make our living room curtains but couldn't find white ones :(
Tim grabbed some chalk board paint and a roller; which thrilled me because it means he is making our pantry door. He said he can have it done in a matter of minutes...I love his enthusiasm.
Living in 180 year old house isn't easy. There are always projects to complete and repairs to be made. Something about this house just let's us know it needs to be cared for in a special way. Preserving history and all the years the previous families lived here needs to be honored and celebrated.
I can feel the love and bonds of family that still abides within these walls. We are blessed to be it's caretakers and it shows it's love to us in return.


Thursday, January 10, 2013

New Year, New Project

 Happy 2013 everyone! I don't know about you but I am ready for some major undertakings this year!

I have decided to start in my laundry room...

It's pretty bad...

It looks like this...

No I didn't move the dirty laundry out of the picture before I snapped, excuse that K?

I can say I have a lot to work with.

Good bones and lots of natural light and it's big~quite a bit bigger than this picture suggests.

Which is great, but means I have my work cut out.

I will keep you posted and pray the project will be finished in one~yes one~month...

I hope my husband reads this... :)

And I hope the room turns out like this...

Or even this...

I'd love one of these...

So I can actually look forward to this...

Because for now...

: ) ~Melissa

All images via Pinterest

Friday, January 4, 2013

My New Favorite Artist

At this beginning of a new year I began thinking about a calendar I bought before Christmas. Excitedly, I pulled it out and looked thru again with wonder. The artist is Wolf Kahn, a German born, American "color field" painter. His work is stunning yet soothing at the same time. I plan on framing the calendar pages to display in my laundry room. Pics to come when project is complete~it may be awhile ;) Here are a few pieces of Mr. Kahn's art that I would like to share with you. Enjoy~Melissa

Images via Pinterest