Monday, November 30, 2015


Hi ya:).  My family and I just got back from our annual Thanksgiving vacation these past 10 days.  It was awesome - great weather, family time and food.  I tried to stay off of my computer and phone as much as possible, but am back at it this week.

I took 549 pictures with my iphone while there, and probably 99% of them are of the kids.  There is no way I could possibly pick out my favorites, so instead here is my favorite picture that is a non-kid pic; Mike fishing.  Love this one.

I am fully aware it is NOT summer here in the midwest, however, hopefully a lot of you are able to take warm weather vacations like we did this past week and half.  Here are a few of my top go to's from this past week.

Birding Bag - A large bag to carry all of your stuff, kids stuff, husbands stuff, and everything else.

Piggy Paint - Love this stuff, but don't expect it to stay on too long.

Sound machine - So much easier to put your little one to sleep when there are others staying with you.

Swim cover-up - Same one I used - in blue (on sale right now).

Moisturizer/Sunscreen - This stuff is amazing - you can wear it alone.

Rodney Strong - Because you will need this and it is delicious.

Waterproof bag - I used this everyday in my bag to put my cell phone, wallet, extra diapers, etc. in.

Hat - Wore this all day.

Shirt/cover-up - I wore this a lot as a cover-up on the days it was chilly, (i.e. in the upper 70's).

Monitor - Luckily our house was close enough to the pool, which allowed this monitor to work poolside. 

Keens - How cute are these?!  Functional as well - Gwen wore them a ton.

Beach towels - So cute and my kids love having their 'own' things.

Friday, November 20, 2015


Okay you guys - I found this amazingly delicious enchilada recipe.  It is so good - I could not wait to share it with you all.  I made it the other night when some friends of ours were coming over, and forgot to snap some real life photos of how it turned out.  However, my only comment is do not use the large tortillas as the recipe calls for.  The large ones were waay too big and would only let me fit 4 in each 9x13 pan; versus using one pan for all eight.  And each enchilada was pretty large.

You have to make the special enchilada sauce when making these, it is truly what makes the recipe; and is SO easy.  I honestly can not believe how delicious they turned out - I just mentioned them to my mother in law, and we are planning on making some this week while we are in Florida...super quick and easy to make for a large group.

Again, because I totally slacked on taking photos the night I made these - all photos are via Ali over at Gimme Some Oven.

Recipe link is here.  Enjoy!!


Monday, November 16, 2015


Our family is leaving for a beach vacation this week, and we started packing the kids today.  My mind started getting excited about the sunny skies, warm weather, relaxing days and all things beach.  While I would never think of decorating a room in my day to day home based on teals, blues, wicker, ropes, waves, etc. I do think it would be so much fun to decorate a lake/beach house when the time comes (keeping my fingers crossed it is sooner rather than later).  

I put together some inspiration photos I keep hanging onto for that 'one day' house.

image via
image via
image via
image via
image via
image via pinterest

image via
image via
image via
image via pinterest
image via

Thursday, November 12, 2015


Today was the day...  The reveal day for all 20 of the One Room Challenge participants.  If you all missed my first post a few days ago regarding the ORC, click here to go back and check it out.

Quick recap: One Room Challenge is a 6 week interior design challenge hosted by Linda at Calling it Home.  Linda selects 20 bloggers bi-annually to participate - and it is intense - like crazy awesome intense.

Here are a few of the highlights from the final reveal day - these bloggers all did such a great job.  I can't imagine the stress these lovely ladies have been under these past 6 weeks.

This living room reveal by Cassie at Hi Sugarplum! I think has to be one of my favorites.  Cassie stated she enlisted the help of the uber-talented, Kristin Jackson of The Hunted Interior (one of my favorite blogs to follow - by the way).   The second you see this space - it has Kristin written all over it - I love it!

Here is a shot of Arianna Belle's finished room.  If you click here, and see the before and after shots of her space side by side - it is a perfect example of taking a space and making slight changes that produce a large impact.  Another awesome room - love how that light fixture does double duty by bringing these two spaces together. 

Check out this awesome wallpaper in a bathroom project over at Design Darling

I love this bright and airy sitting room done by Sherry at Design Indulgence

I could never design a space like this, but wish I could.  The purple sectional is awesome with that detailed nailhead, and that large ottoman takes the cake.  This room was done by The English Room.  

A bright and neutral nursery done by Honey We're Home

Up next is Simplified Bee's foyer renovation.  I love the wallpaper and light fixture in this one.

LOVE these nightstands used by Style your Senses

There is my very quick and dirty recap of the ORC.  I included a link to the above bloggers, which at the end of every post they have each detailed a list of the participants so you can easily follow along. These posts give me the inspiration I need to wrap up this bedroom project and be able to share all of my after photos.


Wednesday, November 11, 2015


While searching for art for our new bedroom, I came across this print from Stephanie Vovas:

I mean...I want bad!  Would be perfect in our new space, and I just love this photograph.

While I was on her site, I came across so many more sexy, exotic and unique prints.  Stephanie has a unique style that you will notice as soon as you begin viewing her work.  Her photos have a cool, 70's, artistic vibe.  These are statement pieces, you should probably use, like a few of the more nude-esque ones.  I am not an art connoisseur by any means, but I can really appreciate her photos for what they are - making a beautiful, unique, in the moment statement.

Love this one -

and this one -

And this one - 

And this one -

Do you have a go-to artist?!


Tuesday, November 10, 2015


The other night, while I am making dinner Michael asks me, "Mommy can we make a dessert maybe one like that has apples in it".  My first reaction was, no way - lol.  I am lucky to be making dinner right now, let alone have time to "make" something for dessert...I mean don't you have piles of halloween candy in the cabinet you could grab?!  

After I spent the next 10 minutes day dreaming about an apple crisp with ice cream, I got online and found this recipe from The Kitchn.  So simple, quick and I had all of these ingredients at home - and I am sure everyone does - simple.  

They did take about an hour to put together and cook - but with this daylight savings time change, it seems like we now have all this time in the evenings.  So it actually gave us something to do until bath and bed time.  

Here is the finished product - they were SO good, and I did not feel that guilty about eating one - there really is not a lot to them.  

And yes...I love having a boy and a girl;).

My little baker wanted to lick the sugar out of the bowl.


Let me know if you guys try this - we will definitely be making again.

Monday, November 9, 2015


Are you all familiar with the One Room Challenge put on by Linda over at Calling it Home?  O M G!  It is insane you guys.  I believe it is bi-annually - Linda challenges 20 bloggers to showcase themselves re-doing over a space in just 6 short weeks.  The bloggers must post once a week on Wednesday regarding their progress, and then also post the links to the other 19 bloggers as well.  Which is so fun, because if you are obsessed like me, you can just read through all 20 bloggers post super quick (;)).  Linda has identified out a basic timeline of events for the 6 weeks, however, as you all can imagine - things get a little cray cray.  Here are all of the bloggers involved:

One day - you guys, hopefully Grey Loves Grey will be included in the above - and I will be able to join in on all of the craziness that ensues the ORC!

One of my favorite design bloggers, Christine Dovey has been working on an extensive new bedroom addition for her ORC.  She just reported this past week, that due to events out of her control, the room will not be able to be completed by next week.  I was pretty bummed about that...however, she is going to continue to blog about it until it is finished - can't wait to see how it turns out.  I love her work, she is so super talented.  Here is the link to her ORC last fall 2014 (reveal photos below) - I mean have you ever seen a light like that in a bathroom?!  I just love it.  Her work is always so original and inspirational.






Have any of you wanted to participate in a renovation like this?!  I can only image how stressful it would be coordinating contractors, electricians, etc. - but as always I go for the big reveals.


Friday, November 6, 2015


Curtain rods are such an important element in your room's overall design.  I love a good thick curtain rod, it can take less expensive drapery and make it look more elegant and classy.  These types of rods would be perfect to use when hanging - for example, the very affordable Ikea panels.  While some versions of Ikea's panels are 100% linen, using a thick lucite, brass or chrome rod will really elevate your window treatments.  Here are some inspiration photos that I love.

curtains via Pottery Barn (no longer have exact color available, but do have other options) - rods are unknown
image via
image via
image via pinterest

When shopping for a thicker curtain rod, I would recommend going with one that larger than 1" in diameter.  Here are a few options to get the look.

I just ordered these in the gold for our bedroom project (from West Elm).  At 1.3" they are a little shy of 1.5" - I'll keep you all posted when I receive and see them in person.  

Here is an AMAZING diy tutorial from the uber talented Grace, at A Storied Style.  I am tempted to return my West Elm gold rods, and get to working on some diy lucite ones!  Love these ones that Grace made.  

These rods are from ATGStores (which is a Lowe's Company).  

TGIF!  Hope you all have a great weekend!


Wednesday, November 4, 2015


As I have briefly mentioned, I am slowly and secretly;) working on re-doing our master bedroom with the talented and super sweet gals at Havenly.  One of the main things I wanted to change in our bedroom was to add furniture, other than our bed and nightstands.  I wanted a few items that I could use to place my clothes on in the mornings when getting dressed, or maybe set a bag on after I went shopping.  Sounds slightly trivial, but currently everything gets dumped on either the floor, or on the bed - both of which get frustrating because our bedroom is always a crazy chaotic mess.

Therefore, one of the items I knew I wanted to incorporate in the design was a bench at the end of the bed - or two X benches.  I would have loved to be able to find a settee somewhere, but they were a little out of the budget on this project (I am still on the hunt for one I can up-cycle).  I love this look when you do not have a full bed frame you are working with (i.e. we just have a headboard, no footboard, etc).  It also helps add to the overall style of the room. 

Here are some of my favorite end of bed benches.  PS. the two from Target (first two linked below) are currently 10% off with the code, "NOVEMBER10", and Ballard is also having a 20% off everything sale until Monday 11.9. 

Do you all have benches at the end of your beds?!  Have they helped keep your bedroom more organized?  Less chaotic with clothes everywhere on the floor, bed, etc?  At least this way - they will be piled on my pretty little bench, lol:).



design + development by kelly christine studio