Our House

Are you thinking of renovating your home?  Are you wondering what life will be like through a major disturbance like home renovation?  Then continue reading on as I share my 5 go- to- tips to surviving and thriving during home renovation.

We are in week 7 of bathroom renovation.  How have we survived almost an entire summer with out having a full bathroom you may wonder?  Read on to learn more.  I know this may not even be THAT long compared to some who have spent several months renovating.  But when your home isn’t functioning as your sanctuary, a week can feel like a month.  Any amount of time that your house doesn’t feel like your own personal space, is too long and can throw off your whole life.   It can cause feelings of stress, anxiety and complete loss of control.   I know this because I’ve experienced all these emotions in some way.

Let me start by saying we’ve been extremely fortunate to spend majority of our home renovation at my parents house in Cape Cod.  Now, this took some planning ahead and foresight on my part.  I knew, with young kids, to spend 4-8 weeks with out a shower/tub would be an insane move in the winter.  When the kids are in school and we are stuck indoors all the time would be an extra challenge.  Plus, traveling to shower at relatives or a friends house in the freezing cold would have been torture.

Summer has been the perfect time for us as a family to do a bathroom remodel and addition.  However that was achieved with a little planning ahead.  I started meeting with contractors in the fall, several months before I had any intention of starting our bathroom renovations.  Don’t expect to  book a contractor a few weeks or even a month out, sometimes you need to get the ball rolling really far ahead of schedule, to secure the time frame that is most ideal for you or your family to go through a home renovation.

So let’s dive in to some of the ways we made the best of our shower-less summer.  Ways we coped when things got tricky and just some things we learned along the way that you may find helpful if you ever go with out a bathroom.

Coordinate with Friends & Relatives

That’s what friends are for…. right? To help you, even when you are shower-less.  Especially when you are shower-less I mean who wants stinky friends?  It’s so helpful to have family and/or friends that live close by to let you use their shower when you are going through renovations.  I remember one day after soccer camp another mother was doing pick up and bringing the kids back to her house and that’s where we were all do to pick up.  I didn’t want to sound strange but I was desperate and I knew it would make life so much easier if Griffin just took a shower at their house. I sent out the random text explain the situation and of course they were so nice they let him take a quick shower.  Luckily he is 8 and completely able to shower independently.  You’ll find yourself in these situations and you literally just have to laugh and make the best of it.

Gym Membership

You may already have a membership to a gym, and if your going with out a shower during a renovation you’ll definitely want to take advantage of their amenities.  Ben took advantage of our gym membership and would often times work out, then shower at the gym before starting his work day.  This was so helpful on days that going to a relatives house or being in Cape Cod with us wasn’t possible.  It would be SO worth it to join a gym if you are doing a bathroom renovation just for the shower convenience!

To-Go Travel Sets

Living with out a full bathroom for almost two months means living on the go a lot.  We kept all our toiletries and weekend bags by the back door, always.  There was no reason to have any of it upstairs (we were bathroom less up there).  We kept all of our stuff right by the door so we could go into the first floor bathroom to brush our teeth and wash up at night.  If we were going to a friend or relatives house we had a towel by the hook on the way out the door or in our weekend bag.  We kept our favorite toiletries ready for traveling to and from Cape Cod, on a family trip or to the gym, & so on.  The trick was having it all organized together in a way that made life a little more manageable on the go.

These are some of my favorite weekend bags and toiletry cases.  I think it would have been great to have one specifically for the kids as their stuff got lost at different houses a lot.

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Create Order 

Are you renovating a kitchen? Then maybe it’s time to freshen up your bedroom or organize the laundry room.  Maybe tidy up your bathroom. Create order in the other areas of the home so they function well and put you at ease. This will help you focus on something else.  For example if you are renovating a kitchen, and don’t have storage or counters, set up a place in the dining room that holds all your paper plates, cutlery and napkins.  Put together a little binder of all your favorite take out places.  Organize and clean the areas of the home you still have control over.  Honestly, one day I was so overwhelmed with the state of my house that I focused on cleaning up my kitchen and then lit a bunch of candles on the first floor. After that I was completely relaxed and honestly forget that my upstairs was a horrid construction zone.

Take Time to Relax

Now is the time to take care of yourself and ease your stress.   Book yourself that hair blow out ( I did this multiple times and it saved me). Showering so many places was giving my hair a beating.  I would skip days of washing my hair of course but treating myself to a blow out just gave me a little confidence and made me feel good. Try a new facial or grab a manicure (not all in the same day, well not that there’s anything wrong with that!). Spread out the treatments so you have a little way to unwind on the days that are just very overwhelming.  Home renovation can be very overwhelming at times.

Do little things that will calm you down plus get you out of the chaos happening at your house.  We faced a really big decision in the midst of our renovation that forced us to consider potentially spending another 5k and adding another two weeks to our renovation.  It was a small blemish in the ceiling that caused an imperfection and we didn’t know if we should live with it or fix it.  It was all cosmetic.  We went back and forth for almost two days – there was no clear right or wrong.  It drove me crazy.  Finally we made our decision and I booked a relaxation acupuncture treatment (one of my new favorite forms of relaxing and health and wellness for myself.)  I felt SO SO much better after I left my treatment.  Then we completely moved on.

REMEMBER,

Somethings don’t always go as planned in home renovation, but the good news is it will come to an end.  I always love the saying “this too shall pass’. It will come to an end and before you know it, it will all be a memory.  Take a deep, deep breath and trust that it’s all going to come together and your home will be even more amazing because of it.

I really hope that you find this helpful if you’re thinking of renovating or are in the midst of it.  You can and will get through it!  Make the best of it, treat yourself at times and you will be rewarded with a beautiful home! Have you ever gone through a home reno? Any more tips to add? Thanks for stopping by!

Jordan

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Hey Friends!  We are about halfway through our summer bathroom renovation, which is good timing because we are about half way through summer.  My goal was to have everything back to normal (ish) by the time   school starts in September.  If you didn’t see on Instagram in early July we gutted our one and only full bathroom and are converting our old master closet into a master bathroom!  So far it’s been going smoothly.  We have an amazing contractor that is kicking butt and moving the project along!  We have GC’ed our own projects before, like when we did a basement over at our first home but now with two kids and busy work schedules we knew we needed someone that could handle all the permits and all the sub contractors.  Plus, all the unforseen issues that can come up when renovating an older home.

This week the walls are going up and the plaster is being done.  So far all the permits have passed and the rooms are really starting to take shape.  As we move closer to the plaster phase and the tile phase I know the choosing paint color phase is also getting closer.  I’m gitty with excitement to finally have updated bathrooms AND our own master bath!  Sharing a bathroom with two growing kids was getting a bit challenging (to say the least).

UPDATES:

Kids Bathroom Tile:

All the tile for the bathroom projects are from Merola Tile which can be found at Home Depot and I’ll link them below for you so you have the names for them.  The kids bathroom will feature this cool navy blue start pattern on the floor, an organic looking subway tile and then a hex pattern inside the niche wall.  I’m going to bring in other touches of blue with accessories, some flat black in the vanity light and wall hooks as well as chrome finishes.   

Master Bathroom Tile:

The tile for the master bath is a bit more sophisticated and timeless.  My goal and vision for our bathroom was to create a luxurious feel in a small  bathroom.  To accomplish this I choose statement fixtures in champagne bronze (which I’ll link again at the bottom of the post) and then I will mix in some polished nickle in the vanity light and faucet.  Both of those finishes have warm tones so they will mix together very nicely!  The tile is neutral and I plan to keep the color scheme neutral as well to let the tile be the focal point.   I chose this beautiful design for the floor and the scallop for the shower walls with a soft gray grout to keep the design subtle.   A simple white penny for the floor with dark gray grout colors to carry in that contrast from the field tile. 

Bathroom Wood Accent Inspiration:

How’s that for some moulding inspo? As you can see from the in progress photos we decided to do a half-wall in our master to give a little separation from the toilet area and shower. We would love to do some type of wood moulding detail. Definitely, in the kids bathroom we are doing a simple board and batten with hooks for towels, painted in Decorator’s white and then a pop of bold color above that.

The reason I’m not doing a color on the board and batten is because I want the kids toilet to blend in with white wood work as it’s the first thing you see when you walk up our stairs. It’s an unfortunate placement for sure, but it’s not something we could afford to change.

Paint Colors:

Keep in mind that the paint colors will only be on a the above sections of the wall due to the use of some type moulding (board and batten, etc.) inspired by the above pictures.

I’m so excited about the potential color I chose for the kids bath! I love that it’s called “Comet” and we have a star floor. Promise it’s not an outer space theme! 😉 It’s just a coincidence as I was looking for a bold color with blue/gray almost slate, it also will have a little purple undertone in certain light but since it’s in a kids boy/girl bathroom I think it is perfect. Comet will only be on two small wall sections, it will bring a nice balance to all the white tile, toilet and vanity in the room.

For our bathroom I choose a gray/beige color called Collingwood. I wanted something a bit traditional and neutral but that wasn’t too warm, too cool, too light or too dark. This will make all the white tile and white vanity pop. All the trim and if we do some type of moulding will be in Decorator’s White. Now I just need to decide to add a moulding detail to our toilet nook area or just paint it all Collingwood and move on?

That’s all the updates I have for you now. Thank you for stopping by! I can’t wait to share the final reveal with you all.

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Jordan

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Since returning from Haven Conference 2019 I’ve been soaking in all the knowledge and just goodness from my weekend with some of the nicest and most creative women I’ve ever met.  If you’re not sure, Haven conference is a conference for Home Decor Bloggers and DIY’ers that takes place in Atlanta.  I started blogging about two years ago however I’ve been a home decor blog reader for over a decade.  When I was an Art Teacher in between classes or when I had time, I’d read blogs like Young House Love, Bower Power and Making it Lovely, amongst others of course too (these are some of the OG’s of home blogging).  They gave me ideas and inspiration for home decor projects, as we were just getting ready to buy our first home.

I really can’t believe that now I’m on the other side, as a blogger!  I have my home decorating business that I’ve mainly built on Instagram.  However, I wanted to connect to a platform I have ownership of, because if Instagram ever tanked you guys know where to find me.  This year when they released tickets to Haven I knew I had to go! I’ve been working so hard and wanted to take another step towards investing in myself and learning the ropes of blogging.  Haven is where you do that.  Today I wanted to share 5 highlights of my Haven Experience.  If you are thinking about blogging and not sure where to start this is the place to go and learn.   Here are my highlights of the trip!

The Accommodations

Staying at a luxury Air B & B was for sure a highlight, yes being at the hotel would have been convenient, but for a girl that loves gorgeous design- staying at this beautiful Air B & B was such a treat.  Typically, attendees stay at the hotel where the conference is being held.  However, myself and a few other girls; Andrea from 31 Girl at Home, Merichelle from We’re the Joneses Brendt from She Gave it a Go, Kelly from The Tattered Pew and Jennie from The Little Bird , had the opportunity to stay here!  We were hosted by owner Pam Sesssions and were less than a 10 minute drive to the conference.  THIS is the listing to the Air B & B we stayed in if you want to see more photos.  Each room was jaw dropping-ly beautiful.  Plus these ladies were some of the sweetest people I’ve ever met!  If you have a moment go check out all of their beautiful blogs.

The Classes

The workshops/classes range from  photography, to upholstery classes, SEO, Making a Blog, Instagram Growth, Working with Brands and SO much more.  Experts in the field lead the classes and offer a wealth of information and personal experience.  I did a little of everything and I have to say, one of my favorites was learning how to work with local news stations to increase your brand presence on TV.  As well as creating a cool display board with simple easy to use materials such as plywood, muslin, a staple gun and ribbon. 

The Brands

Some of the leading companies in the home category attend and sponsor Haven Conference.  Everything from cleaning, to carpentry, to sinks, to paint and cement!  Brands that attend go all out with their booth setups.  I was so impressed with the level of creativity and eye catching-ness.  I mean it is a conference for creatives after all.  The Home Depot is the big sponsor of the whole event and shared their new line of home decor products from bedding to towels, which they were personalizing on the spot!  Also, companies like Hoover, Rust-O-luem, Hunter Fan Co., Wagner and so many more were all in attendance to meet with us.  It was so great to chat with reps from these companies and get inspired by their products for my own home projects and idea, essentially you pitch yourself to them for collaborations. 

The Inspiration

Being at an event full of creative individuals is nothing short of inspiring and motivating.  It reminded me back to my art school days where everyone has a talent, and everyone is trying to hone in on that talent to share it with the world.  At Haven Conference it’s the gift of home decorating, building, photography, design and more… talent is overflowing and it would be easy to feel competitive but it’s not it is a community and everyone is there to help each other improve. 

The Connection

I saved the best for last because connecting with others is something that can’t be topped.  I’ve spent years building my Instagram account, not to intentionally become an “influencer” (I hate that word) but to share my love of decorating/crafting and to give people ideas on how to make their house a home and to make connections while I was home with two little babies.  I have made so many friends these last couple of years on Instagram with people from all around the country, sharing this same passion.  To meet these online friends in person and grow that connection… was the best feeling!  To know I have a network of friends “colleagues” I can go to when I need advice or help is priceless.

 

Tips:

  • Pack a tote bag for carrying around all day and an extra duffle bag to bring home lots of swag
  • Prepare to be on the GO a lot wear Comfy shoes
  • Some dressy outfits for night and business casual for the day
  • Notebook and Folder for all the brand hand outs
  • Battery Pack charger for your phone
  • Business cards and business card holder

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The dog days of summer are officially here in Boston with temperatures in the 100’s this past weekend.   Like many we are trying to beat the heat and stay cool.  Hey, I’d take heat any day over snow and cold- so bring it!  I like to keep my decor really simple this time of year and now that the 4th of July decor has been packed up I wanted to switch up some of our farmer’s porch decor to make it feel really summer-y and fresh with out going crazy or spending a lot.  Today I’m sharing my Summer Porch Refresh!  

Before I jump into summery photos of our farmer’s porch I want to share something pretty awesome that finally happened a couple weeks ago which inspired this summer refresh.  We were long over due to have all the exterior trim of our home repainted, it was chipping for years and we knew it was time, well it finally happened!!! Ok maybe this isn’t that exciting, but it get’s better!  I’m not ready to show it off just yet because now our window shutters look pretty dang… BAD.  Figure’s right?  One thing always leads to the next.  Hopefully in the fall we will update them. They’re a redish-brown color and super faded, some even broken.

Anyways, back to the more awesome part.  I knew the painter’s would be here working on all the trim around the house, even our farmer’s porch.  I have been wanting to freshen up our farmer’s porch FLOOR paint and CEILING paint for awhile but haven’t been able to find the time or energy in this heat.   SOOO the company that was doing our trim ended up painting it for us!  *TIP if you’ve hired a subcontractor for a home project (painter, plumber, electrician etc… ) it’s worth it to ask for other smaller add on’s, chances are since they are there they’ll do it for you and give you a better deal than having to come back later for that other smaller task.  So it wasn’t much more for them to do those two areas since they were literally already working on all the trim around it.  YAY!

THE BEFORE:

Here is our front porch at Halloween last Fall, notice the floor and ceiling?

You can see that it was a worn out brown paint with out much of a sheen to it. The ceiling wasn’t awful but it was just white and would attract a ton of bugs nesting in the corners (I guess it would have fit in at Halloween time! ;))

PORCH FLOOR PAINT COLOR:

Windy City by Benjamin Moore

I like it because it’s a darker gray (in person) but not overly dark and there are some warmer undertones with out it looking too brown.  It’s a very dynamic color.  We used Benjamin Moore’s exterior paint in a semi gloss and I love that it has a little sheen to it.

PORCH CEILING PAINT COLOR:

Palace Pearl By Benjamin Moore

I like it because it’s a subtle soft powdery blue that won’t fight too much with the St. Lucia Teal on the exterior doors.  We did this in an eggshell since we didn’t want it overly glossy on the ceiling.

So why blue on the ceiling?  Blue on porch ceilings originally started in the South to ward off evil spirits and then over time was also used to confuse bugs from nesting on your porch ceiling as they think it’s the sky.  I’m not sure if this is actually true, but it looks really pretty!  I’m going to see if it works at all because we always have yucky bugs in all the corners out here in the summer.  So far it’s been a couple weeks and zero bugs! This article from Apartment Therapy also does a great job going more in depth about the historical context of the blue porch ceiling origins.

FRONT PORCH DECORATING TIPS:

1. Pick a color scheme. 

I have my signature blues going on but the accent color this time of year that I gravitate towards is yellow- it’s cheery and think of how refreshing lemons and anything citrusy is this time of year.

2 GREENERY/FLOWERS

Find some plants that like to be potted in slightly shady areas that can also withstand heat. So far my ferns have been thriving. Honestly, I’m not the best with keeping potted plants alive! So far ferns for the win! Our hydrangea plants in the front yard are having the best year ever! So I trimmed some and put them in a vase with cold water and ice cubes to perk them up in the heat.

3. LANTERNS

I’m always a fan of adding lanterns outside. Plus I love that they can bring in your color scheme and add ambiance in the evening.

4. PATTERN RUG & PILLOWS

Always add a fun pattern or two to you outdoor area either in a rug or pillows. I love this ikat pattern rug I got from Target last year and this pin stripe pillow from T.J. Maxx. You can either mix different colors or keep the same theme going on. For me blues are my favorite especially in the summer.

5. MIX UP YOUR SEATING

For your seating try mixing materials. Buy something second hand and chalk paint then distress, or use a metal bench like mine mixed with a woven side chair. It adds interest to your seating area.  Outdoor seating doesn’t have to match perfectly as long as you have a cohesive color scheme. I linked some similar options below!

6. CITRUS ACCENTS

Nothing gives summer vibes like fresh fruits and citrus! I love this lemon wreath which I’ve had for a couple years now (linked similar at the bottom of the post) I also think oranges or even pineapples would be a beautiful accent! I love layering my seasonal signs or wreaths over our vintage window frame it just brings so much more depth than if this was just a wreath on its own.

Exterior Door Colors is St. Lucia Teal by Ben. Moore

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Thank you guys so much for stopping by on this summer day! I hope you are enjoying every moment of summer. What do you think of the colors I chose? I’m always so amazed with what a great coat of paint can do!

Jordan

*This post contains affiliate links which means I may make a small commission off an item you purchase from my blog. I only share products I love and it doesn’t cost you any more. It truly helps support my blog!

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Are you scratching your head thinking, what the heck is a boob light?!?  Many people have them in their home and don’t even realize it.  If you look directly up at one, you will understand exactly why they have that nickname 😉 .  I have a very strong dislike for them.  However, a lot of people don’t realize what they resemble and gravitate towards them because they are so inexpensive.

I’ve been on a mission these last few years on my Instagram- trying to rid your homes of the awful BOOB LIGHT phenomenon.   I will admit we had quite a few when we first moved into our current home and my plan overtime is to get rid of each and every one of them.  I’m happy to report we are now down to two!  Still it’s two too may if you ask me 😉   Today I want to share a variety of other more stylish options.

There are so many great flush mount choices out there.   Below I rounded up some of my favorites all of which are under $100.   If you’re more farmhouse or more traditional or modern… Whatever your particular style is there is something for everyone.  I found a little of everything and I hope it’s a helpful resource for you if you are also slowly trying to update your outdated lighting. Ok now tell me… how many do you have in your home? You must have at least one. 

MY FAVORITE FLUSH MOUNTS UNDER $100

I hope these ideas help you if you are in need of updating some questionable light fixtures in your home.   Thanks for stopping by!

Jordan

*post contains affiliate links which help support my blog but cost you nothing extra

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The weather is beautiful today, with a warm breeze blowing through the window as I write this.  Summer is finally here and is one of my favorite seasons.  I love making my home feel light and airy this time of year.  I like to go minimal with my decorating in the warmer moths to help create that light vibe.  I wanted to show you how I added some summer art to our gallery ledges, which you can find HERE.  I really enjoy switching things out for each season as you can see on this post and this post.  Choosing art doesn’t have to be exhausting mentally or financially it can be really easy and fun.  My two favorite places to shop for affordable art is HERE and HERE.

SUMMER ART LEDGES

Here they are all ready for summer.  I mixed in some of my photographs of the kids at the beach and then let the art and color just shine.  I still love the wood tone frames against the white matt’s.  I think it adds a little warmth and coziness.  I played around with the layout and composition but ultimately I think having three of each size frame works and then just playing with the arrangement.  I still might try to swap the frames and sizes so the same exact ones aren’t above and below but for now this is good!

The two stripe paintings are original paintings by local artist Carolyn Mackin. They are part of her series called “Cape Cod Stripes” of which I’m a huge fan of and I was so excited to get two 8×10’s in these blue color schemes.  The other two paintings I will link at the bottom of this post.  I LOVE how they add movement in the waves as well as the small pebbles or shell shapes that are just so organic and simple plus I love some of the green and pink shades it brings in.

Mixing media is a good idea in your art ledges, or gallery wall whatever you might have!  I think bringing in a couple different types of art adds a collected feel and makes it more visually interesting.  Here I have two original paintings of which you can see the texture of the brush strokes and then a photograph and a print of a painting.

As you can see I also mixed in some objects that I found at the Target Dollar spot, these woven fans break up the rectangular shapes and bring in another beach-y texture.  This adorable “beach’ paddle also adds another layer of interest on the shelves. The small Cape Cod canvas is made with real sand by my friend over at www.tahlulastreasures.com 

I hope you enjoyed seeing my ledges all styled for summer.

Thanks for stopping by!

Jordan

Shop My Favorite Affordable Summer Art:

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I can’t believe Memorial Day Weekend is here and we are just about to kick off summer. We are actually splitting up the weekend between Cape Cod and then back home for some little league baseball and a family BBQ.  I’m so happy that BBQ season is officially here.  We’ve worked so hard on our outdoor spaces that I’m so ready to finally enjoy them!  The last thing on my to do list this week was to get some Red, White and Blue, decor on our front door.  I want to enjoy it for awhile before we head back to C.C. for majority of the summer and a lot of my Patriotic decor is at our beach house so I was really just looking for things I already had around the house to bring a little Americana vibes to our front door with out going out and buying a bunch of new stuff.

Let’s start with the lanterns.  I’ve had THESE lanterns for several years now.  They’ve seen it all from rain and lots of snow.  They really were starting to look dirty and dingy.  I’ve tried to clean them before but there was fading and chipping.  So I decided to do my favorite most cost effective tricks- spray paint.  Whenever I want to breath new life into something, if I can spray paint it I will.  So for the lanterns I just grabbed some white spray paint and gave it a nice clean coat.  They look so much better.  I also have to admit to you that I don’t ever truly light up my lanterns.  They are there for look.  Since these are exposed to moisture the batteries always rust and get messy.  So I simply leave the lanterns with out batteries.  That may seem strange to you but just works for me.

I already had these red planters and I tend to bust them out every summer when I start adding some festive Patriotic decor.  I’ve had these for years, however it’s as simple as taking a large cheap plastic planter and spray painting it red and like that you have super inexpensive and easy patriotic decor.  I wish I could tell you the name of the plant I put in them.  I was in such a rush, I was looking for something full and with white petals and this was the best I could find at Lowes.   I also grabbed this large red flowered plant which I was so excited to bring in that natural red color.

If you ever see an old chair on the side of the road, or at a local thrift store, grab it!  I chalked paint this one red, after a few seasons outside its weathered to this rustic chippy garden stool.   My front steps need such a good cleaning.  I think we need to get the pressure washer out.  Always something else to do right guys?!  

TIP 1:  I love to add height on either side of the door it makes the entrance feel more grand. Chairs/ stools add height to plants.  Or grab a potted tree of some kind to flank either side of your door.

I purchased this adorable straw tote months ago with intent to use it or give it to Autumn to use, because I loved the classic colors and “hello”.  However I couldn’t find a wreath I was really into and I love trying out different things for my decor, reusing something for a different purpose is always my favorite thing to do.   I love how it looks with some simple faux hydrangea and two small flags on either side.  I used some bags to fill out the bottom and make it look really full.  I just added mine to a small nail we already had on the door so its centered.  I tried adding to a wreath hook but it looked to bulky.  Our door has seen a lot of abuse over the years with out a storm door that, it’s probably time to replace soon.  So a tiny nail hole doesn’t really bother me too much.

TIP 2:  Bring in colors of the season through plants, a wreath and maybe one touch of simple decor.  Don’t need to go over board.

I found this simple metal star  with the flag on it at the grocery store of all places and it was under $5 and I simply rested it to the side of the lantern to bring the colors down in that corner.  Hanging it on the door wouldn’t have made enough of an impact but just leaning it against a pot or lantern is a nice extra touch.

TIP 3- Change up your door mat to fit the season, layer a throw rug underneath to add interest.

Tip 4- Create depth in your front door design, by adding decor elements to the first steps and build them back towards the front of the door.

Tip 5-  Use a mixture of plants to add a variety textures and visual interest to your front entry.  

There you have it my Red, White and Blue Decor for the upcoming summer Holidays!  I didn’t have to buy too much and used a lot of things I already had on hand, I just grabbed some plants and spray paint!

I hope you have an amazing Memorial Day weekend.

Jordan

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*This post is in partnership with Christmas Tree Shops andThat! a brand I love.  As always all opinions are my own.

Hey Friends!! Today I’m so excited to partner with one of my favorite stores for finding great deals on seasonal decorating products Christmas Tree Shops andThat!. I’m also joining a fabulous group of home decor blogger to share our summer outdoor entertaining ideas with you. Now that outdoor Memorial Day is coming up and BBQ season is here I want to show you how I turned a potting bench into an outdoor bar, with the help of all the amazing and affordable summer items out now at Christmas Tree Shops andThat! Guy’s what is better than an ice cold beer or iced beverage on a warm summer day? A fun bar to set up all those refreshing drinks on! This cute little outdoor bar I’m about to show you, will completely improve your outdoor entertaining game.

The decor selection at Christmas Tree Shops andThat! never disappoints and this shopping trip was no different. I knew I wanted to stock my outdoor bar with accessories that are safe for outdoor use (non breakable) additionally that will make hosting outdoor parties easy & effortless. What I love about using a potting bench as a bar, is that it’s the perfect size and it has such a fun outdoor vibe, plus lots of storage. The potting bench I have came in a natural wood finish that I painted with an exterior white paint. However you could stain or event paint yours in a pop of color. This potting bench also comes with a cabinet and drawer, so it’s great for storing all of our new outdoor dishes, table linens and the cutlery caddy from Christmas Tree Shops andThat!. The best part is all of their summer melamine dishware is affordable and stylish! I was so excited to see a variety of prints, colors and styles, many of which match the colors of my outdoor color scheme; win, win! Plus, the prices can’t be beat.

My must have items for the perfect outdoor bar:

  • Tub for ice and can/bottled drinks
  • String lights
  • Drink dispenser
  • Cocktail shaker
  • Outdoor safe cups (tumbler, wine and margarita)
  • Cutlery caddy
  • Pitcher
  • Napkins, straws, paper cups
  • Small cutting board
  • Fun Dish Towels

Here is how I took my simple potting bench and with some fun colorful entertaining accessories, turned it into a bar.

How fun do all these colorful accessories look displayed on our new bar? Thanks to Christmas Tree Shops andThat! for having such great selections of outdoor dishware and bar accessories. I added in some pops of yellow to break up all of the blue tones I was using and I love the yellow in these fun pineapple tumblers. They are super tropical and cute!

I’ll be honest- I completely forgot to grab lemonade or fruit punch mix for the kids to put in the drink dispenser (somehow managed to remember the margarita mix though haha) So I improvised with this completely crazy and also slightly genius idea. I took all the different assortment of juices we had in our fridge, mixed them together and then added some seltzer. I basically created my own fruit punch with fizz, so that’s what it’s called Fruit Fizz. I was really looking for any excuse to get all these half empty bottles out of my fridge. Just promise not to tell the kids my secrets, ok? Shockingly, it wasn’t actually as bad as I thought it would be!

I’m using the pretty blue rimmed pitcher for keeping out ice water, to cut down on bottle water use. If some of the kids see right through my use -up -all- the- juice- in- the- fridge- concoction there is always ice cold water available 😉 Just be sure to keep a sharpie in the drawer, out of their reach, so you can write their names on them, then they can easily identify their own.

This little bar is such a fun addition to our patio. Before we used a random old cooler for all our beverages and all our mixed drinks inside the house on the counter. I love this hammered metal tub with blue which was a steal at Christmas Tree Shops andThat!, it brings such a fun pop to the bottom of the bar, and I like that it ties in the metal from the top of the bar. It’s so fun to have an area to make drinks outside and keep all the entertaining stuff organized. Now if we have an impromptu cookout with family or invite neighbors over for an evening cocktail, we have the perfect spot to entertain outside! Plus it’s all within arms reach- ready to go at a moments notice.

Now let me show you guys how the bar looks on our patio from further away. There it is tucked against the side of the house, it fits perfectly there and is central between our sitting area and dining area. I was so excited to also set up our outdoor dining table. I knew I wanted some pretty outdoor wine glasses. I grabbed these blue colored ones from Christmas Tree Shops andThat! and they look so festive with these fun pineapple straws in them. The teal lanterns I already owned but Christmas Tree Shops andThat! has a wide range of lanterns as well, which I think are so pretty as a table centerpiece, especially if entertaining in the evening.

Our table and chairs we already owned, however I needed some outdoor safe plates. I grabbed this set from Christmas Tree Shops andThat! I purposely mix-matched the designs so they had different combinations of patterns, which I think add’s so much interest to the table! I also layered underneath the plates these outdoor woven placemats in Navy also from Christmas Tree Shops andThat!.

Here is a close up of the adorable white metal cutlery caddy with rope handle also from Christmas Tree Shops and That!. I LOVE how the yellow pops off the blue and white! I plan to leave the Caddy in the bar cabinet so it’s so easy to grab forks/knifes/etc when guests come over. The best part of the potting bench turned bar is that cabinet and drawer. I can easily tuck the place mats, plates, and put all the straws, etc… in while we are not using them. It make’s entertaining so easy!


I just love how this all came together. I’m so excited to host our next outdoor party! What do you think of the potting bench turned into a bar? Are these items you could see yourself using at your next BBQ?

Thanks for stopping by and thanks to Christmas Tree Shops andThat! for another great seasonal shopping experience. I’m always so impressed with the stylish pieces I find at great prices. Be sure to head over to the other blogs linked at the bottom of this post! They all share so many amazing summer decor ideas!

Jordan

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Southern State of Mind    |   At Charlotte’s House   |  A Tufted Life   |   Jor Decor   |    Aratari at Home

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Friends we have two exciting home projects beginning this summer, starting early July! I have been waiting and dreaming for this and it’s finally happening!! We are planning to remodel our upstairs full bathroom (our one and only full bathroom) and add an additional master bathroom. EEEEK! If you could only see me right now, I’m literally typing this gitty with excitement. One full bathroom was fine while the kids were little and didn’t require much physical space, but as they continue to grow we are beginning to out grow our one tiny bathroom.

When we purchased our home 6 years ago we knew we eventually wanted to gut the upstairs bathroom but the timing was tough, I was pregnant with Autumn and Griffin was only 2. Plus, financially it was just too much to take on all at once. Not to mention it would have left us with out a shower or bathtub. So we decided to put the full renovation on hold and instead, we update a few cosmetic things like the pink bathtub which we had sprayed white, the pink toilet and the extremely dated vanity. I even tiled right over the pink floor tile. It actually didn’t look too bad once we did a coupe cosmetic updates, plus took off all those handle bars.

Here is what it looked like when we purchased the home in 2013:

THE BEFORE

Now several years later and two larger kids later, the time has come and we are ready to take on this home renovation. I mean… as ready as anyone can be to have their home a chaotic mess for awhile 😉 . The silver lining to waiting to renovate until after living in our home for awhile, which is that by doing some other upgrades, like making our bonus room off our master into a big office/closet it actually freed up our old master walk in closet. So now we have this under utilized space which just happens to be against the other full bathroom. Cue light bulb moment. This sparked the idea that while we renovate the one upstairs bathroom we should consider, to avoid having to go through renovation twice down the road, to have our master bathroom addition done all at once.

Now I want to share my design boards for our two bathroom renovations. Both bathrooms are about the same size which isn’t very big. I want them light and bright so they feel bigger. Our master bathroom will have a single shower but I want to do floor to ceiling tile and glass doors so it feels bigger and more open. I also want to add a barn door entrance to our bathroom to give it something special and to not cut into our master bedroom space. Since we will already have a door in the master bathroom which will connect to that office/closet. I think a barn door will add character and also just make it a lot more open too.

THE PLAN

For bathroom design I alway start with tile as inspiration and to lead the overall look and feel for the space. I’m so excited to be partnering with Merola Tile for both bathroom renovations. Merola Tile can be found at The Home Depot and they sell an amazing variety of tile options at very affordable options. All tile is linked by number so you can easily find the product I’m using. I chose floor tile for both bathrooms in interesting yet not overpowering patterns.

For the kids bathroom I wanted to bring in some fun and playful elemtents with the wall art and tile. I’m in love with this Stella Azul pattern, the stars are a bit unique yet timeless and will grow with the kids. I’m planning to keep the rest of the bathroom light and bright with white subway tiles and a white vanity. However, I’m playing with the idea of painting the vanity in a fun accent color. I love to add a couple wood tones to ground the design and for a touch of rustic and a natural element.

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THE BEFORE

This will be where the barn door opens to our master bathroom. The corner with that artwork will have a vanity and mirror with two sconces. If we can fit them. Otherwise I’ll do lighting above the mirror.
The old master closet we are joining with this other nook to create a full bathroom. This corner will be our tiled shower with glass doors.

The Plan

I’m so freakin’ excited about this design for our master bathroom. We aren’t working with a big space but that doesn’t mean it can’t feel luxurious! I’m mixing some metallic elements, a bit more sophisticated with the shapes going on. I absolutely love this scallop tile, I don’t want it to be too pronounced so I’ll probably keep grout lines somewhat light in color, as well as the white penny rounds on the shower floor. For the main bathroom floor Ben and I fell in love with this black/gray design which will add that masculine element mixed with some of these more feminine details. All of these tiles are Merola Tiles and I’ve linked them for you.

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I’m so happy with how this design is shaping up. I really wanted something sophisticated and timeless, but with some fun twists like the the scallop tile and mirror. I love how it feels neutral and serene.

July can’t come soon enough. I just want to get this project going ASAP. This will make such a huge difference for our family and everyday life at home, plus increase the value of our home! Win, win. Our kids are growing by the day and once we approach those dreaded teenage years I know we will not regret having our own bathroom. I’m sure if any of you have teenagers you are vigorously nodding your head while reading this. What do you guys think of my tile choices? I’m excited to try something different and stick with some classics that I love to use to like the subway and penny rounds.

I’ll keep you posted as we get closer and as the project begins! Here are some more bathroom products I’m loving!

Bathroom Mirrors:

Bathroom Vanities and Lighting:

Bathroom Decor:

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed my bathroom inspiration for our upcoming projects!

Jordan

*This post contains affiliate links which means I may receive a commission if you follow a link and purchase something that I have recommended. These are all products I have bought or similar to what I have. Clicking any links will not cost you any extra money but it does help me keep this site up and running smoothly.

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(Photo via Serena and Lily)

Happy April Everyone!  I’m SOOOO excited that April is finally here and the weather is starting to turn in our favor.   The best part of warm weather is simply that we get to spend time outside and when we aren’t working on the yard or playing with our kids we love to lounge and entertain on our patio a.k.a our outdoor living-room.  I think of our patio as an extension of our interior space.   On today’s post I want to share how I create that atmosphere.   So if you’re looking to achieve an extension of your interior space, outside, keep on reading!  If you have a deck, porch or patio I’m also going to suggest some of my favorite outdoor products to help you create your own outdoor oasis.  Today I’m going to focus on zones and outdoor rugs.

(Jordecor E-Design)

What is a zone?  A zone is a designated area that will serve a purpose in your space.  For example, where is the dining area going to be vs. seating area and/or grill set up?  If you have a smaller size outdoor space you may need to think about what will be most functional for you.  Perhaps the size of your outdoor space can’t accommodate two zones.  So do you prefer to dine outside or do you prefer to lounge with a book and a cup of coffee?  Once you decide what you will utilize most for your outdoor space to function as, you can start deciding on zones, measuring and picking out your pieces.  We are lucky to have a large patio, sometimes it almost feels too big.  It needs several zones to make it feel finished.  With out the multiple zones of furniture it would look very bare and empty.

Once you have a zone or multiple zones, you want to define that zone by adding an outdoor rug.  Make sure the rug you choose says outdoor.  I LOVE using rugs outside.  A rug makes a foundation for your space, even if you have beautiful decking or pavers or brick… adding that first layer on the ground is creating the zone and also adding visual interest plus coziness.  I would definitely suggest at least one outdoor rug to soften the hard surface and bring that interior feel outside.

Caring for Your Outdoor Rug

Outdoor rugs are made to get wet, and deal with the elements so they are durable.  However will they last for years and years?  Maybe a few if you take care of them.  Yes, I leave our outdoor rugs out in the rain.  However, I make sure to keep them in a sunny area on our patio.  This helps them dry out which prevents mold/mildew.  I find the sun even helps with cleaning them.  Occasionally, I take the rugs to the driveway and spray them with our power-washer and add some safe gentle cleaner (linked below), if we entertain and have a lot of stains we will spot clean and/or take the pressure washer to it with some soap.  Where we live the winters are very harsh so rolling it up and putting it in your garage or basement through the winter is key to the longevity of your outdoor rugs.

(photo via Serena and Lily)

 

What Style to Pick?

jordecor-portfolio2(from our beach house three summers ago)

You may want to stick with a color scheme or go neutral. It depends on your style.  If you prefer more coastal beach vibes, colorful, classic or southwestern, there is something for everyone.  Below find my favorites and in a low-mid price range.

My Outdoor Rug Picks

 

OUR CURRENT PATIO

There you have it, the first step in getting your outdoor space ready and refreshed for spring!  Zones and rugs.  Next I will share my favorite furniture, pillows and decor!

Thanks for stopping by,

Jordan

 

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*This post is in partnership with ChristmasTreeShopsandThat! a brand I love, as always all opinions are my own.

 

With Easter just around the corner, cute little bunnies are starting to make their way out, don’t worry JUST the decorative ones.  We are still only a ONE pet family ;).  I love this time of year so much as we eagerly await some warmer weather, days spent outside playing with the kids, breathing fresh air and working in the gardens.   I’m so happy to be teaming up with ChristmasTreeShopsandThat!, as well as talented group of bloggers to share lots of decorating ideas for Spring.  I can’t wait to see how each blogger adds the wonderful array of products from ChristmasTreeShopsandThat!to their homes.  If your here from the lovely Nikki from A Tufted Life, isn’t her home so beautiful? I just love her style!

You guys know I love decorating for every season and holiday, it’s how I express myself plus create a feeling of excitement and love in our home.  I was so happy to make a trip to ChristmasTreeShopsandThat! to get ideas for my Easter tablescape.  I use these shopping trips to inspire me and get my creative juices flowing for each decorative project.  They have so many cute wreaths, signs and tabletop items! Visiting this store is always a treasure hunt to see what you can find.  For me it’s about curating a look that’s my own style, choosing things that will work together and fit with the style of my home.

Now to the fun part, what did I pick up?  I had great luck (as I always do!). I found the cutest bunny dinner plates, a bunny pillow, napkin rings, wood candle holders, plus so much more that I can’t wait to share!  My inspiration led me to create a wood and pastel theme table- I want it to feel a little rustic yet also fresh for spring!   First, I’m going to share an easy DIY tablescape idea with you that I made with this metal planter and bunny votives both from ChristmasTreeShopsandThat! I’ll try to LINK the items I can find online however a lot of items you’ll need to go in store to find.  However they do have a lot of great spring products online, too!

Easy Easter Centerpiece DIY:

MATERIALS:

From ChristmasTreeShopsandThat!:

  • Metal planter from their Grainhouse line
  • 3 packages of egg fillers
  • 2 ceramic bunny votives

From a craft store:

  • Spanish moss
  • Glue (hot glue works fine)
  • Wood finials (in the wood section),
  • White spray paint
  • Floral foam
  • Painters tape to cover wooden handles

This centerpiece was so easy to make! I spray painted the long metal planter white.  Once it dried I hot glued the small wood finials on the bottom corners to give it height.  After that, I layered the floral foam, moss, eggs and some greenery.  Lastly, I layered in the adorable bunny votives on either side of the metal planter.

I already owned the pale blue runner, the wood chargers and the white napkins.

What’s nice about a dried arrangement for a centerpiece is that unlike fresh tulips or florals, which will only last a week or two, this will last the entire season.  I like that it is low in height so you can see and chat with your guests across the table.  I also love the texture of the spanish moss.   I honestly think this may be one of my favorite tablescapes, it’s not too fussy and really pretty/cozy looking.  I didn’t set the full table with glassware and utensils because I like how simple it looks and that I could leave it set up like this as Easter approaches.

I’m so happy I chose the wood and pastel tones.  I love how they work so beautiful together.  The wood really grounds all the colors and makes it feel so warm and inviting.  I think these mini bunny napkin ring holders might be my favorite item from the whole shopping trip.  How cute are they?!

I love how this pillow adds a cute pop of color in this corner! ChristmasTreeShopsandThat! had so many great spring pillow options and all priced very reasonably.

Spray painting the metal white, makes the pastels and moss/greenery stand out so much more. I love how cute the little wooden legs look too.

Well there it is, my Spring table with ChristmasTreeShopsandThat! What do you guys think of the wood and pastel combo?  It’s soft and subtle and I don’t mind leaving it up all the way through April!  I hope you give this simple centerpiece DIY a try this season.  It really was so fun to make. Thank you all for stopping by and supporting my blog.  If you have a chance please head over to these other lovely blogs to see their creative ideas as well.  Next up on the hop is my friend Lindsay from https://www.aratariathome.com

Love,

Jordan

Be sure to check out all of the other participants that are hosting the Spring Progressive Dinner Party below!

Southern State of Mind    |   At Charlotte’s House   |  A Tufted Life   |    Jor Decor   |    Aratari at Home

 

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I’m having so much fun styling my new art ledges since we installed them back in January.  I love swapping out art/prints from my frames each season.  Eventually I want to collect some art from local artists to display as well, there are just so many different ways to reflect your style and be creative with your wall decor.   Today I wanted to share with you how I’m styling my art ledges as we near spring, along with a couple simple spring printables I made.

HERE are my art ledges and I ordered them in the largest size in white.  I also ordered 6 frames in a wood finish (also linked HERE) I like the contrast of the wood against the white.  The larger frames all hold an 8×10 photo size which is great because I can easily print photos at home to pop inside.  I decided to keep the black and white photos of the kids and Ben and I in Paris because I love them so much.  I wanted do so something in the frames that would look clean and fresh.  I found these line drawings of floral stems from stock photos I have access too and added my own words to them in a font I liked.  I then printed them on a grayish-blue cardstock paper just to add a little something different than just white background.

TIP FOR STYLING ART LEDGES:

I like mixing in other elements to my art ledges depending on the season.  For early spring/spring I added this adorable metal watering can (it’s flat on the back side).  I added some little green blooms but really you could add any floral!  I also mixed in a boxwood wreath and some wooden bunnies with a diagonal stripe.  I recently found the bunnies at Homegoods/TJmaxx.   What I love about these *extra* elements is that they add so much interest to the ledges and break up all the squares/rectangles.  I always try to find a little bit of symmetry with layout, yet at the same time not make it too perfectly symmetrical.  Does that make sense? 😉

What do you think?  Do you like the simple spring touches to the art ledges?  It’s neutral but I love the simplicity of the greens and black/white mixed with the blues and the greens in the room.  Below are the printables that I created to share with you guys.  If you use them in your home please share and tag me!  I recommend using a cardstock paper in a soft pastel color or a gray like THIS:

Thank you for stopping by!

JORDAN

SPRING PRINTABLES:

Welcome Spring

BLOOM

Grow

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This year my daughter truly started to come out of her shell at school and build some friendships with girls in her class… it makes my heart so full to see her little budding personality and excitement for going to school.  I wanted to do something special for her and some of her new “Gals” so I decided to host a little Galentine’s Day Playdate.  If “Galentine” is a new term for you, it’s basically when you celebrate Valentine’s Day with your best gal pals!  I really do think it’s nice to take time to appreciate all the loving relationships in your life and that’s what makes February 14th a special day (not just for the candy and the roses although that’s always good too ;)).

For the girl’s Galentine’s Play Date I made the playroom festive with balloons a Valentine teepee and lots of music for dancing!

I also thought it would be fun to set up a cupcake decorating table and have a little craft at the end.

For the table set up I decided to use wrapping paper as a runner because the colors tied in so well together.  I love using wrapping paper as a runner because its inexpensive and there are SO many options.  Basically all of the party decor I already had on hand.  My Rae Dunn Ceramic bowls and vase which I collect (from T.J. Maxx and Marshalls), the pink chargers I grabbed at Michael’s last year for Easter and I was so excited when I realized they would be perfect for this holiday as well.  I grabbed the paper goods and wrapping paper as well as the heart garland from Target.

I baked some cupcakes (store bought, I mean who has time to do them from scratch?) with store bought vanilla icing (again who has time) For toppings I did crushed graham crackers, mini chocolate chips, strawberrys, conversation hearts and lots of sprinkles!


They loved decorating and most importantly eating their creations!  We did a quick little craft after creating Valentine’s Crowns

What a fun Gal’s Day celebration it was!! They laughed, giggled and ate a ton of junk food!   I hope my daughter grows up with loving friendships and remembers this special little playdate!

Have you ever celebrated Valentine’s Day with your Gals? What fun things do you like to do??

Thanks for stopping by!

Jordan

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