Fall 2017 Insta House Tour

Life is hard, just when I get motivated to be back on the blog scene, my Mac Mini won’t turn on.

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Luckily, nothing was lost and it was still under warranty! With the computer snafu I haven’t been able to publish some long planned blogs (all my photos being on the Mac); however, i’ve been doing the Fall dance of joy on Instagram. I love this season! I know most people look to Spring as the time of renewal, but it’s Fall for me. The crisp cool air is so fresh after a long summer’s humid heat. To me the chill is so refreshing and brings all the cozy things I love: sweaters, smores, fireplaces, hot cider, boots, the smell of spice, football season, need I go on?

Once Labor Day hits, i’m all too happy to pull out the warm colors of the impending season (plus a long weekend is a great time for such a project). I’ve started cleaning out a lot of my Halloween specific decor in favor of just “Fall” so I can leave it up until Thanksgiving. That required some shopping for pumpkins and fall sprays/stems (Thanks to Kirklands, Michaels, and Hobby Lobby all being in a 2 mile radius).

Enjoy the Insta tour, Happy Fall. #getyoursweateron

Target $1 bin purchase shot, can you spy those pumpkins in the other pics?

#falljoy #fallmeetssummer #seashell #farmhousestyle #decorhashtagfeed

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#farmhousestyle #falldecor #farmhousedecor #decorhashtagfeed #lovefall

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#falldecor #farmhousestyle #decorhashtagfeed #myfallsecorstyle #needpicsforframes

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Fall House Tour

My favorite season eek!  Not going to lie, my house has been decorated for Fall since Labor Day Weekend.  Here’s a quick tour, I promise to work on my photo skills as I aspire to have the beauty shots most blogs have…..eventually…those darn kids are just so demanding 🙂

Enjoy the season!

#lovefall #keepitsimpledecor

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#lovefall

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Fall decor on the blog soon. Link in profile.

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Tada! #finishedproduct #hobbylobby #diy #lovefall #tuesdaytraychic

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Fall Centerpiece

Fall is coming! My favorite time of year; crisp air, cinnamon spice, comfy sweaters, crunchy leaves, love it all!

Here’s a little DIY centerpiece to get you ready for the season. Fall house tour next week.

 

Fall decor on the blog soon. Link in profile.

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Tada! #finishedproduct #hobbylobby #diy #lovefall #tuesdaytraychic

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Halloween Hoopla Part 2 Trick or Treat and Second Birthday Party Time!

Halloween Hoopla Part 2 includes Anya’s pre-trick or treat birthday party with our neighbors, trick or treating, and yet another birthday party with our family and close friends (who are really our family).

Having two parties required some planning. Something that helped was planning similar menus and making food that yields a lot of servings so I could split between the two. Not to mention two extra helpful hands from my mom 🙂 Check out the parties, the menus, and the results below.

Party 1 – Boo Anya’s Two Pre-Trick or Treat Party

The Menu:

  • Hallow”weenie” Bar – Hot dogs with topping options
    • Plain Jane Hot Dog: Ketchup, Mustard, Onion, Relish
    • Reuben Dog: Sauerkraut, Swiss Cheese, Thousand Island (cole slaw can be added too)
    • Chilli Dog: Chili, Onion, Cheddar Cheese
    • Slaw Dog: Chili, Cole Slaw, Mozzarella
  • Slow Cooker Mac n Cheese
  • Taco Dip
    • 2 blocks of cream cheese mixed with 1 jar of picante sauce, pour in casserole dish, top with shredded lettuce, then shredded Mexican cheese, then chop and sprinkle tomato on top, serves well with scoop tortilla chips (I skip the lettuce)
  • Veggies and Dip
  • Pickles
  • Ranch Pretzels
  • Clementines with Halloween Faces drawn on them, missed a pic of these
  • Fall Salad
  • Desserts
  • Drinks
    • Variety of soda, juice pouches, beer, water

Activities:

  • Decorate your Halloween Egg Hunt bag
    • Brown bags and stickers from Oriental Trading
    • Crayola washable pip-squeak markers worked out great
  • Halloween Egg Hunt
    • A Pinspiration, Halloween decorated/themed plastic eggs for a Halloween Egg Hunt, great way for kids to get their candy.
    • Eggs purchased from Oriental Trading, plain eggs decorated by myself with a Sharpie

Favors:

  • Glow sticks for happy haunting when trick or treating that night.

The Results:

Decorate Halloween Bag Station

Decorate your bag station, covered our cedar chest with a festive table-cloth, was the perfect height for little ones to get crafty, favors (glow sticks) to the side. Decorated with ghost string of lights.

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Halloween Egg Hunt

Halloween Egg Hunt. Eggs from Oriental Trading. Skelton egg came with face on it, Alien egg glows in the dark, faces drawn on other plastic eggs with a Sharpie

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Trick or Treating and Halloween Costume

I was a bad parent and didn’t get a great photo of Anya in her costume on Halloween, but I did capture this at her daycare Halloween Parade. Can you guess who she was?

Boo Monsters Inc. Halloween 2015

Boo from Monsters Inc. Easy costume. Shirt from Old Navy to match the color of Boo’s shirt, Pants we already had from H&M, Purchased the ball hair ties on Amazon, and the Sully Back Pack was a birthday gift purchased on Amazon.

Trick or Treating Halloween night with some neighborhood friends, was too dark for photos, but we caught Boo Eskimo kissing a dinosaur 🙂

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Anya’s Second Birthday Party

The weekend culminated with Anya’s final birthday celebration.

The Menu:

  • Hallo”weenie” Bar
  • Tortellini Soup
  • Pepperoni Casserole
  • Taco Dip
  • Veggies and Dip
  • Artichoke Dip
  • Homemade Hot Bologna
  • Pickles
  • Ranch Pretzels
  • Salad
  • Fruit Salad
  • Clementines with Halloween Faces
  • Desserts
  • Drinks
    • Variety of soda, juice pouches, beer, water

Activities:

  • No planned activities, knowing that these party goers are frequent playmates they stayed entertained outside in the nice weather.

Favors:

  • Halloween cups filled with Halloween straws, erasers, stickers, candy, bracelets, vampire teeth, etc. IMG_6049

The Results:

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Fanning the smoke :)

Fanning the smoke 🙂

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Halloween Hoopla Part 1 – Homemade Adult Halloween Costume

I love Halloween, always have and always will. I love Fall and everything it has to bring, including the introduction to the holiday season. Love this time of year! It is quite a hoopla though. Not only does the season bring lots of fun Fall activities, but also Little Control Freak’s Birthday Party.

Lots of planning taking place for the upcoming weekend where we are not only having a 2nd birthday party for our closest family and friends, but also a pre-trick or treat b-day party with our neighbors. I know, two parties, what was I thinking to take on such a task and of course it all has to be done right! Stay tuned for that.

Part 1 of Halloween Hoopla takes us to the first adult Halloween party hubs and I have been to, in well, forever. Check out our homemade Halloween costumes and yes this is an official announcement!

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Bun in the oven, and indeed there is one due to arrive May 2016. I knew that I’d be called out for not having a drink at the Halloween party so I decided to play that in our favor. I spotted the bun in the oven idea on none other than Pinterest. Luckily we had a few sturdy boxes in the basement, so one evening when I mustered up enough energy from my morning sickness haze, I started to foil it.

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Foil wasn’t necessarily the smoothest material, but it gave the oven a stainless steel look.

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Added two labels for Bake Till and the time (being the predicted due date), 4 wooden dials for the oven knobs, and voila!

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Photo taken after wearing it all night, so a bit scratched up.

Photo taken after wearing it all night, so a bit scratched up.

In all I purchased:

  • 2 rolls of foil – approximately $4 (Didn’t even use one full roll, but clearly the leftovers will not be wasted)
  • 1 bakers hat from Amazon – approximately $8 (went with black so it wouldn’t get so dirty as it can now be used for Little Control Freak’s play time)
  • 4 wooden dials from Michaels – 29 cents each (thanks to my mom for picking these up and painting them)
  • Everything else was something from our house. Cheap yet effective costume!

Little Control Freak wanted to know why her kitchen hamburger bun was being borrowed 🙂

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Happy Haunting!

Fall Fun – 2015

Fall is one of my favorite seasons, I love the cool crisp air, the colors, and all the seasonal scents of cinnamon and pumpkin. It’s also a great time to get outdoors with friends and family. Check out some of the fun Fall activities we already participated in this season.

Apple Picking

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Local Fall Festival

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Smores with Friends

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College Football (someone liked the band the most)

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Fall 2015 House Tour

Time seemed so limited this year, but still managed to decorate the house nicely 🙂  Tis my favorite season. Enjoy!

Front Porch
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Dining Room/Foyer
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Kitchen/Florida Room
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Basket garland made from odds & ends of outside garland that fell apart last year. Glad I didn’t toss it!

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Living Room
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Fall 2015 Living Room TV Stand

Fall 2015 Living Room TV Stand Close Up

Fall 2015 Coffee Table

Powder Room

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Fall House Tour

I love fall!  Cool crisp air, football, marching band, orchards, pumpkin & spice, apple cider donuts, sweater weather, boots, Halloween!  Okay so I could go on forever.

I love the warm colors of the season and how it makes my home feel even more cozy, that’s why I dig out my decorations early to mid-September every year to maximize the season before we move into Christmas mode. I had so many ideas this year, but not much time and money, but hey that’s okay. Once Anya is a bit older we can craft and decorate together vs. me racing against the nap-time clock.  Enjoy!

Front Porch/Yard

This is still a project in works as I have not yet purchased chrysanthemums or flipped our garden from summer to fall (weather is still a bit warm).  But I have added a few items to get started. Our mailbox gets dressed through the holidays with seasonally appropriate garland.

Fall Mailbox

Blackboards are all the rage, and I have been using one on my porch, drawing a different message for each season and/or holiday.  Tip, use liquid chalk markers.  These markers make your message more vibrant and noticeable from a distance, not to mention it is much easier to draw detailed and precise messages with them vs. regular chalk. Pinterest is a great place for inspiration if you are stumped, that’s where I got the idea for the gem below. Not great at drawing?  Get Stencils! (ignore the hose in the picture forgot to remove that, oops!).  I’ve been using my fake pumpkin from the Christmas Tree Shops for about 5 years now.  Why fake and not real?  I pay the price once and can use year after year, unlike real pumpkins that you need to buy every year.  Sure I still love to get real pumpkins, but for years I can’t afford it or don’t have time for it, i’m guaranteed to have at least one on my porch that won’t wilt or be damaged on mischief night.

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Dining Room

Notice the chalk art project I tried from My Sister’s Suitcase Blog, best idea ever!  I will be making one for each season to live on that wall!

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Cake stands aren’t just for cakes! This vintage white milk glass cake stand has been in my family for years.  It’s perfect for my dining room centerpiece elevating some spooktacular decor.  A few loose leaves from garland takes up the empty space and adds a touch of fall.

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My vintage bird-cage no longer houses summer bird eggs, but rather my Lori Mitchell Mummy, placed right in the bird’s nest of course. His pea pod counterpart is close by.

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Foyer

Some simple garland added to my gallery wall gives my foyer a Fall feel.  Tip, garland can be long and/or bulky and not the right fit for your space, cut it.  Nothing says it has to stay all together.  Best part, you can spread the wealth around the house instead of investing it all in one space.

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I replaced one of the frames with my Lori Mitchell witch, added Fall flair.P1130886

A new addition to the foyer, a larger cedar chest.  Another family piece, the small chest that was once in the foyer has moved to our living room to house all of Anya’s toys. This new cedar chest stores bulky winter coats that we tend to wear only when we are out in the snow, extra blankets, and other junk. Yes I said junk, I love everything to have a home, but some things just don’t fit elsewhere, it’s like Monica’s mystery closet on Friends (episode 14 on Season 8 of Friends).  Most of the junk consists of our laptop bags, diaper bag, things that need to be returned to friends or family, or items from current ongoing craft projects.  And yes it all fits!  The chest is a bit worn, but I love the lived in antique look.

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Living Room

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Another Lori Mitchell trick or treater.

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My fireplace wreath always dons a starfish and sand dollar, some of our self discovered sea treasures. I’ll add a touch of any season or holiday with some garland.

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The foyer chest turned toy chest.  It also doubles as extra seating during parties.  Note the blanket on Roxy’s bed, some of the Fall preview days left her chilled.

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Garland added to our cabinet beneath the TV.  Houses all our DVDs and yes some VHS tapes.

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Florida Room

Jelly cabinet update.  I’ve been trying to accent my kitchen area with some blue and green, so I decided I’d add some color to the back of my jelly cabinet.  This was so easy!  I bought some fun scrapbook paper, measured the cabinet space, and cut/taped together the paper as necessary.

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A few pieces of tape later and I have added more color to the corner of our sun-room off our kitchen.

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Although I love the intricate centerpieces that extend the entire center length of a table, it’s not the most practical in my house.  I can’t imagine removing each piece when I needed the full table!  This vintage toolbox is easy to remove from the table when needed, just pick up and move and pick up and place back when finished.

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I love Bath & Body Works Fall candles!  I love their candles in general.  Among my favorites are: Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin, Sweater Weather, Flannel, Tailgate, Fireside Marshmallow and Mahogany Teakwood. BBW’s candles are one of the few candle brands I know to truly fill your house with the fragrance.  Plus they look great and burn nicely!

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Happy Fall!

$5 Chalk Art

My head has been spinning today with creative ideas for the house, Control Freak problems…

I was scanning Pinterest for inspiration on a DIY ornate framed chalkboard and gallery wall and came across this gem.  My Sister’s Suitcase Blog, which has a ton of great ideas, that shared a really cheap project for holiday decor, something for every season really.  $5 Chalk Art files that can be downloaded from The Caravan Shoppe (and in turn printed at your local office supply store).  The best part, My Sister’s Suitcase outlines a DIY project for hanging these gems in a nice shabby chic style, which I adore!  I’m definitely trying this!  I’ve had an empty space on my dining room wall that I haven’t quite found the right piece for, and this is perfect.  Can’t wait to try it for Halloween.

On a side note, seemingly all the decor I really love in my house has been found when I wasn’t looking for it.  On the flip side when I am looking for something specific I can never find it!  Funny how that works:)  Perhaps I should stop looking and the items will find me.