DIY Wainscoting

By 5:30 AM , , , , ,
You guys, my husband rocks. Today's DIY project to show you would not be complete without a shout out to my amazing husband. He somehow managed to tackle this project in the two days I was out of town for work last week all while watching our 19 month old son. I truly believe I married Superman. 

O.k. now that the bragging session is over on to the project. Here is what our dining room wall looked like when I left for my trip:

And here is what I came back home to (new paint AND new wainscoting):

To accomplish this project my husband purchased corner round from Home Depot and cut it to size to make the squares along the wall. He nailed the trim to the wall and then painted the entire wall white. He said it took several coats of white paint. 

I LOVE the finished result. 

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Toddler Fun in the ATL

By 1:54 PM , , , ,
If you are looking for a fun family activity and live in the Atlanta area I have a suggestion for you. We took our little guy (18 months) to Legoland for the first time a few weeks ago and had a blast! I was worried he might be to young but he absolutely loved it. And mommy and daddy had a good timed as well. ;) 

If I had to guess his favorite thing about LEGOLAND was the Lazor Blast Ride. We rode it three times and he cried when we said we needed to go see something else. However, he also really liked the 4D theater and playing with the more than 2 million blocks at the exhibit.  My husband and I both really enjoyed the MINI-LAND where their is a full replica of the city of Atlanta made out of Legos along with a replica Star Wars land...too cool! Because photos tell a thousand words below are some photos from the highlights of our fun day.

He weighs 10,500 Lego blocks. :)

Part of Star Wars Land

Watching the "choo choo" better known as Marta go around Atlanta

Playing in the blocks

Just doing some building

Racing the car he built with Daddy

4D theater fun with Mommy and Daddy; also his first "movie" ever

I would highly encourage everyone to go check out Legoland if you have a nephew or son ages 1.5-10! We had a blast! Don't forget you can download a coupon through my previous LEGOLAND post here.

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Spirit of Intentionality

By 11:56 PM , , , , ,
Intentionality. That is my word for 2016. 

I recently took a class that challenged me that "I don't have time" is not an excuse. You do have time. Time is a choice. What you choose to do with your time is up to you. Whether you choose to spend time to sleeping, working, playing, investing in yourself, or investing in others the face is you choose how, where, and when you spend your time. As simple as an idea as this may seem this completely resonated with me. 

Humor me for a moment. I want you to draw a line on a sheet of paper. Put an x on the right side of the line. Now write your birth date on the left side of the line. Now I want you to put another x on the line of where you think you are in terms of what percentage of your life you think you have used up. For example, if you are 30 you should probably shade out about 35-40%. Now shade out from your birth date to the x on the line. Everything that is shaded is your past. You can't change is what it is. However, everything to the right is your future (what you have left) and what you choose to do with it and how you choose to spend that time is up to you. As morbid as an exercise as this might seem it does give you an unique perspective. 

Don't misunderstand me. I am as busy and can just as suckered into this crazy life as anyone. I am a full-time working mom of a toddler. If that is not crazy enough I am also a wife, a Christian, an aunt, a friend, a cousin, a sister, a daughter, a lover of water and Netflix, the list goes on and on...

You guys let's get intentional with our time. Let's start learning how to say "no" to the o.k. and/or good things so we have the capacity to say "yes" to the great things. I highly recommend Lysa TerKeurst's book "The Best Yes," for more on this subject. 

Another thing I have been thinking about is how I want people to talk about me at my 80th birthday party. What things do I want my husband to say about me? What do I want my son to say? My family? My friends? My co-workers? The way I want to be remembered and the legacy I want to leave are the "best yes"  activities I want to be intentional about investing my time and energy in now.

Don't get me wrong. This is NOT easy for me. Saying no is hard. I, like many woman, am a people pleaser at heart and want nothing more to make everyone happy all the time. However, I am learning that I can't be everything to everyone. Research shows that you can only be good at 5-7 roles at a time. I can guarantee you I play more than 5-7 roles but I do find that when I don't focus in on just 5-7 I am not truly doing any well. (And no family does not count as one role. Being a wife is a different role than being a mother which is different than being a daughter which is different than being an aunt which is different than being a get the idea).

So what does being intentional with my time look like for me? Well, I took the time to actually write out what those 5-7 most important roles are in my life right now and I ranked them 1-7. To me if it does not fall in one of those numbers I think twice before committing much or any time to it. I have also put together very specific goals and action steps for each of these roles. If, for example, one of my goals for being a wife is to be my husband's biggest supporter what tangible action steps can I take this week, this month, and then this year to support that goal?

I have examined how I am using my time and carved out extra time for some of the things that really matter to me. For example for me my quiet time is very important. I used to do my quiet time every morning before I got out of bed. Then came the little guy and that started to become less realistic. Thanks to the "First 5 App (also highly recommend this)" I still got a short study in (usually sometime while blowing drying my hair every morning) but I was not truly getting real "quiet time" with the Lord. So now every evening before I sit down to watch any TV or crawl into bed I dedicate 15 minutes on the clock for my own quiet time.

Another tangible thing I am doing each day to keep myself accountable is I am writing down at the end of each day one thing that I accomplished that day towards my goals. This simple exercise as been life altering for me. I was shocked to see how many days went by before I started getting intentional with my time that I was busy the entire day but didn't truly accomplish anything of real significance to what matters to me. 

All in all that was one really long way to say time matters and this year my new year's goal or resolution if you have it is to be intentional about my time and what I choose to allow myself to get invested in because life is a gift and I want to use what time I am given on this planet to glorify God to the best of my ability.

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Bridal Party Survival Guide (5 Tips from a Bridesmaid Pro)

By 10:49 PM , , ,

I don't know about you guys but I am in that stage of life in which I feel like I am making a career out of being a bridesmaid. I am so excited that some of my best friends are tying the knot! 

Being asked to be a bridesmaid is such an honor and something I don't take lightly but it does require some hard work, time, and effort. I have put together a list of my top five tips to help you be "bridesmaid ready." 

1. Be there for the bride (emotionally). 

Whatever she needs be there for her not only physically but emotionally as well.  This is HER day. And hopefully (Lord willing) she only gets one. From the engagement party, to bridal showers, to wedding day make sure you are there for her for whatever she needs every step of the way.

2. Order your bridesmaid dress ASAP.

Seriously as soon as the bride gives you the dress go ahead and order. You will thank me later when you don't have to pay rush shipping charges and can ensure that you have plenty of time to make needed alternations. And while we are talking dresses even if you plan to begin a workout order your dress for the size that fits you NOW. Seriously please do this. I have seen one too many fellow bridesmaids order a smaller size with some spectacular plan to loose weight only to not fit in the dress come wedding time. 

3.  Begin your workout now. 

On the above note if you really want to get in shape for the wedding you need to begin your workout now. Not six weeks before the wedding. The sooner you start the better.

4. Get your manicure as close to the wedding date as possible. 

No one wants chipped nails the day of the wedding. Get your manicure the day or two before the wedding will ensure your nails are wedding ready. 

5. Begin whitening your teeth a month or two out from the big day. 

This last one can have a dramatic effect in pictures. Did you know that in as little as two weeks Crest 3D White Supreme Flexfit Strips can whiten teeth as well as a $500 laser treatment? Although if you want to be picture ready for showers and other events starting early is not going to hurt. This regiment is definitely worth the time and money ladies. As you know weddings are one of the most photographed day in a person’s life and smiles are center stage. Whether you’re the bride, the groom or in the wedding party, having a bright, white smile is a must-have! I used this on my teeth in preparation for a upcoming wedding and saw dramatic results in as little as two weeks. All it requires is one hour of wear per day and you will see dramatic results. Whitestrips use the same enamel-safe, teeth-whitening ingredients dentists use and provide a comfortable at home teeth whitening experience. At only $64.99 per kit I would say it was worth every penny of the difference I felt in my smile. 

At the expensive of potentially totally grossing you out I am going to share a personal before and after picture of the effects it had on my smile in just two weeks. Yes I like to drink a lot of hot tea and wine...

Pretty dramatic, huh? Told you it is worth the investment of money and time. 

What other bridal party tips do you have to share?

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

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First DIY of 2016

By 12:05 PM , , , , ,
I am SO excited to share with you all our first DIY project of 2016. This year has kicked off with a bang and been oh so busy so of course we decided it was a perfect time to kick off a DIY project AND re-paint the entire interior of our home, ha, seriously sometimes I wonder what we are thinking. None the less I am so happy with how this project turned out and it cost less than $60! 

Is anyone else a fan of Fixer Upper? We love this show. The designs, the dynamics of Chip and Joanna's marriage, what they stand for...the whole package! This show has made us a big fan of the farmhouse style and of course, ship-lap. So we decided to create our very own ship-lap wall. 

Getting started on the ship-lap wall with help from the little man.

We have this slanted wall in our hallway that we call our "pallet wall" since that is where we have hung our pallet shelf. We decided it would make the perfect statement wall and ship-lap would do just the trick so we headed to the store and purchased 24 1x6 tongue and groove boards. We then came home and removed the base board and crown molding and got to work. Relatively speaking it was a pretty easy project. 

The most difficult part of the project was reworking the base boards and crown molding to fit back into the slanted back wall once the tongue and groove was installed. Really all it required was hammering one board to another all the way up the wall. After we had the ship-lap installed we caulked between each board and around the baseboard and crown molding. Then we painted. It took one coat of primer and two coats of paint to cover the tongue and groove. Finally we re-hung the pallet wall and TA-DA.

Project ship-lap statement wall complete.

What do you think?

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TOP 15 IN 2015

By 2:46 PM ,
Happy New Year's Eve everyone!! 

And just like that, another year has gone by. One of the very best things about blogging is being able to look back and reflect on all that has happened in the past year and I have to say, 2015 was a pretty amazing year. Today I'm sharing my top 15 posts of 2015!

1. Fall Bucket List: Activities To Do in Georgia 

2. Strong & Kind

3. Touring D.C. with a Toddler

4. 10 Tips for Flying with a 1 Year Old

5. 5 Things You MUST do in Asheville

6.  Finding Little Ways to Celebrate Your Husband

7.  Curious George 1st Birthday Party & Making Your Home a Welcoming Place for Guests

8.  The BIG Announcement: My Pregnancy Story

9. Feeding Your Baby on the Go

10. Out with the Old and In with the New

11. Some Weeks Are Hard

12. Nursery Tour: My Favorite Room in our Home Decorated for Practically Free

13. Yard Sale Scores

14. I'm Dreaming of a Hot Vacation

15. Crock-a-Sheets

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