Front entry with stairs

Or foyer, for you fancy types.

I love a great entry to a house.  I like to think it sets the stage for the rest of your home.  If the first thing a guest sees upon walking into your home is something like this.
Well, you can pretty much guess what the rest of the home is going to look like.

I like family and guest peeps to feel comfortable in my home as soon as they walk in the door.  In all honesty this is not the front entry used for most guest.  But me and my girls go in and out of this door all day so I like it to be pretty for us as well.
Take a peek
(Love the big ol' tv trying to get in the pic. He's sneaky like that)  
I like to have a fresh bouquet here when I can.

Keeping your stairs free of clutter is just common sense people.  Not only does is raise the trip factor for you and your family, it may lead to a chronic illness called clutteritis and you don't want that.  Trust me.

I hope this inspires you to meander over to your front door, take a look around and see if it's as inviting as you thought.
My rules of thumb, are to keep it simple and homey.   Not as in "whad up my homey?"  But comfortable.
Got it?  Good.

Paint or not to paint?

That is the question. 

Okay all of you furniture painters/lovers out there, I need some input as to your feelings on painting this beautiful vanity.

Let me give you some background~

I got this piece at a steal, and it was so lovely I decided not to paint it.  I brought it with me to The Little Red Barn Sale, and there was no interest.  So I hauled it back to my house, with hopes of selling it on CL.  However, it's been almost 4 weeks and nothing.  Not even a little nibble.  I'm having a serious battle within my soul as to whether or not I should paint it.  I have a pretty good feeling that if I were to paint it, I would sell it much quicker.

Your thoughts?....
I picture myself as an old woman peering through my bifocals, looking back at this blog, and thinking "I can't believe I painted that. 

Or I could be an old woman, with perfect eyesight and thinking "now, why didn't I paint that?"
 I also imagine some sort of head device that we will be wearing 24-7 that allows us to surf the net while driving, cooking dinner, and showering.

Sweetest parts of my day

 A little girl who lays down on the grass and looks up at the sky.
I wonder what she thinks about.  The oil crisis, who to vote for president?  Ahh.... the innocence.

 A sweet little neck, plus a baby who has learned how to take her diaper off.

Baby back rolls...need I say more.

Kale Salad

To those of you who have tried kale and like it.  This recipe is for you.  Kale is one of the healthiest plants to eat.  Although steaming it for about 5 minutes produces the most beneficial way to eat it, I like it raw.  I created this salad the other night when there was no dinner planned.  Sometimes that's how I get my best dinners.
Step 1: Wash and dry your kale.  Chop into small pieces.  I also mixed it with some romaine.  Made about 4-5 cups.
Step 2: In a bowl mix together 2 tsp Dijon mustard, 2 tbsp shredded fresh Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper, and a dash of vinegar.  Mix well, and set aside.
Step 3: Fry 2 eggs per serving.  (Leaving the yolks a little runny allows it to mix with the dressing, yum).
Step 4: Mix the greens with dressing and top with eggs.
I also served it with a side of mashed avocado.
Try it for meatless Monday! .....Is egg considered meat?

Cottage Dresser

I forgot to share this dresser I did for a client last month.  He wanted it to match another dresser bought to go in their guest cottage by the lake.  This was the first custom job I did where I had to match another piece of furniture.  I don't have a picture of the drawer he brought me so I could match the color, but let me just say it was pretty darn close.

I also forgot a before....but it was almost exactly like this one

Mother's day was fantastic.  My gift from my husband was a promise to be the "mom" role for the day.  He took care of everything from feedings to diaper changes.  With the exception of the nursing :)
He did a great job.

A lunch/shopping date made my day complete.  Oh, and a Zensation salad from Zaxby's for dinner, have you tried those?! 

Laundry Nook Facelift

I'm so mad, I just accidentally deleted my before picture of the laundry room!  So now I will have to describe it to you.  Just imagine, brown bi fold doors, and a bunch of random stuff littering the shelves.  Oh yeah, and plain white walls. 
I had a hard time trying to find laundry nook ideas around the web.  There isn't much one can do with such an eye sore.  Let me remind you that this is in our kitchen, yes our kitchen.  I'm glad it's not in the basement, but I would much rather it have it's very own closet somewhere other than the kitchen. 

 After using what I had around the house to spruce it up, here is a peek
 into where I spend quite a bit of my adult life.

 Anyone have a cute idea to hiding the plug and faucet box thingy?
I thought about hanging a clothes line across it with some cute fabric on clothespins.
I replaced the folding doors with some curtains, and the floors are the next to go.
I hope this helps someone else who searches for "How to dress up an awkward laundry nook".

Faux Oxidation

For this dresser I wanted to paint the hardware a turquoise color.  But in the end, by mistake, I created a faux oxidized look. 
 If you don't know what I'm talking about her are a couple of real objects that have the real oxidation thing going on.

 First, I painted my hard ware with oil rubbed bronze, and let them dry. 
Then I barely dipped my brush into my paint, Woodlawn Valley Haze by Valspar, and mixed it with some water on a plate.

  I lightly brushed it onto the hardware.  It fell into all the little crevices and I realized it looked like old iron that had slowly oxidized over time.

  Hooray for mistakes!

By the way, this is the last week for the Decorators Show House!   If you live in the Atlanta area, I highly recommend you go and check it out.  Here is my blog post about it.

Success at the Sale!

To those of you wondering how my first Art Sale went, it went great!  
 We loaded up the trailer Friday night and brought over all of the items I had worked so hard on the past few months.  I had been anxiously awaiting the moment where I got to stage all my items in my little designated space.  I could hardly sleep the night before, it was like Christmas morning.

This was my setup

The set of chairs sold before we even officially opened.  And the gray dresser sold later in the afternoon.  One of the other vendors had her eye on my lamps, and snatched them up before a customer did.

There was a wide variety of art.  We all had our own unique style and it meshed well together.

 My 2 buffets I brought sold before noon.

The check out 
The weather was warm and sunny, and the historic trees that hung overhead provided just the right amount of shade to keep us cool.

I'm very proud of myself and these other spectacular women that participated in the sale.  We all put our hearts into the art, and displayed it out there for others to see and hopefully buy.  It makes me feel genuinely elated to know that a piece that I so passionately created will now reside and be loved in someones home.

 To all my friends and family who came out to support me.  I  can't thank you enough.

... Until next fall, when we get to do it all over again.