Catching up

I have been MIA for way too long. Here is a bit of what has been going on. 

1. We went to the Garth concert and got moved up to 2nd row. Coolest experience ever!
 2. Garth even photo bombed Brad when I took his picture!
 3. The whole yard has been landscaped. We planted camelia hedges, boxwood hedges, maple trees, crepe myrtle trees, cedar trees, and a few more hydrangeas. I can't wait until they all start to fill in!
 4. I now get to bring the boys to school since my new job starts later. We are all loving spending more time together. This job was such a blessing!
 5. The North Georgia State Fair came in September and we managed to go twice this year. 
Keating was finally big enough to ride some of the fun rides although the lack of restraint on those swings had me nearly having a heart attack while we were riding! I was paranoid he was just going to slip right out. 

 6. Fall is my very favorite time of year. Everything is so beautiful, even the weeds in the pasture next to our house. Last week I went foraging for flowers and didn't realize until they were in my house that I had a vase full of ragweed. Thankfully no one in our house has ragweed allergies! 


4 On Friday

This week has been a whirlwind. I started my new job on Monday and I LOVE IT! There is so much to learn, but so far everything has been amazing!

1. With my new big girl job, I needed a new big girl agenda/ calendar. I am usually a cheap calendar girl, but when I saw this one from Kate Spade, I had to have it. I hope that I like it!
2. Fall is coming and I have been loving the cooler temperatures! I had been browsing coats over the past few weeks because it has been a few years since I purchased a new one. I thought I might go the Olivia Pope route and get something classic and neutral, but then I saw this coat in my inbox this morning from ASOS. I have been looking for the perfect animal print coat for years. I became a huge fan after I saw an old photo of my Great Grandmother in one from the 50's/ 60's. I think an animal print coat is so classic and fun.
3. Until recently, I had never worn Almay makeup. I came across this color combo below and gave it a try. I am now a huge fan! These shadows don't crease and the colors blend so well. I will be buying more!

4. Tonight we are heading to the Garth Brooks concert. I can't tell you how excited I am about this! Garth Brooks was the first concert I ever went to in the 1st grade and that is the last time that he came to Atlanta. I have been hearing great reviews and hope he plays a lot of his old songs! You also can't go wrong with Trisha Yearwood!


5 on Friday

It has been awhile since I have participated in the 5 on Friday, so I thought this would be a good week to jump back in!

1. Tempting Target! Has anyone checked out the cute fall things at target lately? If you are on a budget, then I advise you to just stay away! These two sweaters will be making their way home with me eventually. 
2. Last weekend began the most glorious time of year, college football. I love watching the games, but the food is one of the best parts. Last week I made one of my favorites Paul Deen's Hot Pimento Cheese Dip and it was a crowd pleaser. Try it, you wont be disappointed!
3. I know I mentioned a while back that I began selling Rodan + Fields after I fell in love with the products. I seriously can't get over how great they are! My skin is looking better than ever and I have seen so many great before and afters. I think everyone should try it! Check it out! NO MORE CROWS FEET! This is only after using for 3 weeks in this photo!
4. I am in the process of finishing our laundry room which will also function as my craft/ sewing room. I saved this image a while back and cannot get it out of my head! 
 5. I am contemplating the idea of doing the Whole30. Has anyone else done this? If so, how hard was it? The thought of giving up wine and cheese makes me sad already. I think this may be something I would need to try after football season... and Thanksgiving... and Christmas... okay maybe I'll think about it in January.


It has been awhile

I am starting to adjust to the fact that I have become a once a month blogger. A lot has been going on lately and as usual, the old blog took the back seat. In the last month the kids started school, I accepted a new job, and we got in a pretty bad car accident. To say that life has been hectic is an understatement. I guess I will start from the beginning. 

About a month ago, our family was driving home from church and as we were turning onto our street, we were hit from behind out of nowhere. I have never been in anything other than a fender bender so I had no idea what had just happened. Our car ended up over 50 feet from where we were turning and we quickly jumped out to check on the boys who were both hysterical.We were quite literally hit by a truck. A young girl had been driving her dad's enormous 3500 diesel truck and plowed into the back of us full speed while TEXTING

We only had my Jeep for a month and despite how well it held up in the accident, it was totaled. We were all a bit sore, but Brad's back was still bothering him the next day. After a trip to the orthopedic, it was determined that he had a fracture in his spine. Thankfully it is not as bad as it could have been, but has kept him out of work for the past 3 weeks. He is stir crazy! He goes back today for a follow up and we are hoping they release him to go back. 

The following day Keating and Archer started pre-school. Both boys are LOVING school! Keating is doing really well in the pre-k environment and has really learned a lot so far. Archer is doing great being away from home and likes playing with his friends at school. 

We have been finishing up long overdue projects around the house. We had a patio poured in the back yard which left a lot of mud and made a lot of little boys quite happy. Our house has been quite the hit with our friends kids lately! 
We finally got around to hanging our shutters. This little detail has made such a difference! 

and I finally convinced Brad to hang my tobacco basket that he absolutely despises. I think it looks great! The things that man does for me... I am sure he cringes every time he looks at it!

Last weekend I got tired of our laundry room being so unfinished. I started cleaning out the junk and decided that the floors needed to be finished, immediately. The floors were plain concrete and I couldn't decide what I wanted to do with them. I didn't want to have to mess with an acid concrete stain, so I figured I would try wood stain and hope for the best. Worked. Like. A. Charm. I used Ebony Varathane stain and after two coats, the floors look awesome. The whole project cost around $7, can't beat that! So glad that I just went for it. Hopefully the rest will start coming along.

I also came across this old set of lockers at work that I am in the process of re-painting. I am pretty sure that they thought I was nuts for actually wanting them but after a good cleaning and many coats of red spray-paint they are looking awesome! The goal is that they will help hide the mass of toys in the play room. 

As for the job situation, I had not been out job hunting but I was approached by an old friend that had a great opportunity. At first I dismissed it, but the more I heard, the more I was interested. Better hours, shorter commute, better pay, more vacation, more holidays... it was a no brainer. So I will be starting my new position in a week. The hours will allow for me to bring the boys to school which I am really excited about! I felt like I was missing out on a lot of mom things with my current work schedule. Looking forward to this new adventure!


The Dining Room

I finally have a few decorated house photos to share! The dining room is the first area that I consider somewhat "complete" although we still need a few things. When we moved into our house the first time, I had the dining table running the opposite way. When all of the furniture was moved back in, the table ended up like this and I kind of love it. 
I am so proud of how my drapes turned out! They were SUCH a pain to make all of the pinch pleats! Want to know a secret... they aren't even hemmed yet, I have them pinned because the thought of working on them any more drives me nuts. Please remind me next time I get all ambitious to make drapes, to stop being cheap and just go ahead and pay to have them made! Don't mind the crooked curtain rod on the right, there is a loose screw making the rod sag. I didn't realize it until after I took photos.
 I am so glad we decided to add the planked walls, I think it adds so much character. The gold frames and water colors below were a recent goodwill find. Originally I was going to only use the frames and mattes, but I thought the artwork added a little color in our very neutral house.

The pine buffet in the background is going to be moved and I may add some sort of china hutch there. It is too tall for this space but it ended up here and hasn't found a new home in the house just yet. I am also on the lookout for a rug to go under the table. 
 Hopefully I can get the house clean enough to take a few more photos soon! 


The days are long but the years are short.

I read this quote recently and lately I have been finding it very true. Where is this summer going? Someone on facebook posted that it was only 150 days until Christmas. This year is half over and I can't wrap my mind around the fact that school is starting in less than 3 weeks. 
We have been having a lot of afternoon thunderstorms followed by beautiful rainbows. There is nothing more enjoyable to me than watching a thunderstorm from the porch with a glass of wine. When it has been sunny, we have spent time at the pool and finished up swimming lessons a few weeks ago. Keating took 3 lessons that seemed like some sort of torture treatment. He cried every lesson and even tried to escape the pool. By the third class he was swimming, but not liking it. It wasn't until this weekend that he became confident and is swimming like a fish. He is quite proud of himself! 

Two weeks ago I met my old high school girl friends in Hilton Head Island. It was the first time that I had left the boys and went somewhere by myself since Keating was born. We drank wine, caught up, played funny games and were even enlightened on new fangled social media such as Snap Chat. (We also realized how old we are getting!) We really enjoyed our time away but by Sunday morning all of the moms were racing home to see our babies. 

Most of our work around the house has been at a standstill. Our carpenter shows up once a month to piddle around. We are still waiting on the outdoor fireplace to be finished but at least he came and finished our kitchen island that he first started in January! Instead of tackling big projects, I have been working on the decorating portion. I've been sewing up a storm making new pillows and trying to make everything seem a bit more finished, even though it has a long way to go! 

I have a bit of a thing for black and neutral patterns it appears! We also got a new sofa since our old one came back from smoke remediation smelling a bit like dry cleaning chemicals. We stuck the old ones in the office and the kids play room since those areas aren't used as much.
We also added two new chairs to the mix instead of having two sofas. I was hoping for grey velvet after seeing a pair on Scandal (which I am now obsessed with BTW!). I found these at World Market and the price was right when I got them for 15% off. We also replaced my favorite rug because the combination of smoke remediation and carpet cleaner ruined it. The old one is now in our bedroom with the bleached portion hiding under our bed and I found our new one at Homegoods. The chairs came with small pillows that I decided to make new covers for. Below were my fabric choices and I ended up purchasing both. It isn't every day that you find two fabrics that you love. 
I made the grey and gold pillows first but then got lazy on making more covers. I plan to save the animal print for fall/ winter. The animal fabric is all embroidered when you see it close up. Quite pretty, but I'm not sure about using it just yet since I just caught the dog chewing on a pillow. 
Hard to believe that this face could get into that much trouble!
I also added drapes to the bathroom. These were in Archer's old nursery but I had to add fabric to each panel to make them work. I had just enough scrap to make it work! I love it when that happens.
Not all of my projects lately have turned out so great though... case in point. Now trying to figure out what to do with that laundry room floor after spilling fabric dye all over it! Oops!
Back to Scandal, I just finished season 3 and cannot wait for season 4 to air. I am team Jake all the way! 


Picking a new rug

Sometime last summer when we first began building our house, I started picking out a rug for the living room. I am not sure why I felt the need to buy something so early, I guess I was excited to start decorating. I came across the rug below on Rugsusa.com and fell in love instantly. I waited until I found a big coupon to use and made the purchase. 

The day before our fire, I had moved the rug out of the living room and into an upstairs bedroom so that the wrinkles could fall out of it. I am grateful that I moved it because I am sure it probably would have caught fire pretty quickly when the flames poured out of the fireplace and onto the floor... Anyways, the rug was treated for smoke damage with the rest of our belongings and we brought it back into the living room. Unfortunately, whatever was used to treat the rug, also took off any bit of factory stain blocker. This thing is now a magnet for everything dirty that wouldn't otherwise show up. It has been in the house a month and already looks filthy. With two dirty little boys and a huge dog, this thing wont last another month if we keep it in our living room.  The plan is to move it to our master bedroom and our insurance has graciously agreed to replace it. Now the tricky part will be to find a rug as much as I love this one. 

Option #1 I found this rug on Target.com and is made of the same soft material yet has much darker colors. I think charcoal would be a safe bet.
Option #2 I love the vintage look of this rug, but reviewers commented that they grey was more of a light blue in person... Not sure how light blue would look in our house.
Option #3 This is somewhat of a neutral option, but I think a little to plain for my liking.

Option #4 I like the idea of having a natural fiber rug like jute, but I am afraid it will be too rough in a space like a living room. 
Which choice is your favorite? I am leaning towards #1!