Back porch updates 

​ As you know, I’ve been working to update my back porch. Our back porch used to consist of just two rocking chairs, a side table and a large dining table that overwhelmed the space. 

I used some of my birthday gift cards to buy this:

The two rocking chairs we already had used to look like this:

The paint was chippy but the bones were still good. I thought they should match the new table and chairs. 

Enter: spray paint!

This stuff covers well and the finish looks amazing. Here are my chairs and tables in progress.

And now for the finished product.

This summer I am also going to stain the porch floor and rails and paint the French doors. I would get a rug, but between our animals and the red dirt mud, it’d be ruined in a day. 

What do you think about our porch decorating so far??

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate AddictThe Turquoise HomeA Place of My TasteThe Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My PinterventuresThe Lady Prefers to SaveThe Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish CottageBluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential MommyChristine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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Week in review Wednesday 

I hope you’re having a wonderful week. We are having a busy but great week. This past weekend, we went to the beach. 

The girls had a blast and absolutely loved it. Our hotel had a great kids area that our girls loved.

Our oldest just started second session swim lessons and is loving it. On Monday, she had a water filled day. She had her swim class, then we went to the splash pad.

Then we went to my parents’ house where we had a cookout and then Emorie played in the sprinkler.

Emorie also went to the doctor this week to have her sugar checked. She did great!

I hope you all have a great week!!

The easiest DIY EVER: DIY Room Refresher Spray

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This is the easiest DIY ever! I love having a house that smells freshly cleaned, even when it hasn’t been. I also love Febreeze, but I can easily use a bottle a week of the stuff. That would get expensive quickly.

I’ve found this “recipe” in various places in the Pinterest world and decided to try it. All you need is an empty spray bottle, some warm water and your favorite scent of Gain Fireworks or Downy Unstoppables.

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I personally prefer the Downy Unstoppables Fresh scent, which has the aqua lid. One of these bottles of scent boosters costs about $4, and you don’t need many of them to make the spray. I bet I have made almost 10 bottles of room refresher from one bottle of scent boosters. If a bottle of Febreeze costs $6 and I use one a week, well, that is $312 a year. That saves a lot of money, and I can spray it as much as I want to! That may sound silly, but that’s how much I love having a house that smells good.

I used an empty Method multipurpose cleaner bottle for mine. You want to use enough scent boosters to cover the bottom of the spray bottle. Then, fill the bottle with warm water and let it sit for about an hour. I love the pretty blue color of my room spray. Funnily enough, it matches the color of the Downy Unstoppables lid.

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What other uses have you found for Downy Unstoppables/Gain Fireworks?

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate Addict, The Turquoise Home, A Place of My Taste, The Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My Pinterventures, The Lady Prefers to Save, The Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish Cottage, Bluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential Mommy, Christine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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Mommy Mondays: five must haves for beach trips with babies

We just returned from the beach with my parents and our two sweet kiddos.
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We all had a blast and enjoyed every minute. We stayed in a resort that had several pools, but two of them were designated for just kids. We also went out on the beach one day.
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When you’re traveling to the beach with , there are a few things you definitely need to take along with you. These are my favorite “traveling to the beach with a baby” products, in no particular order.

First, whether you’re traveling with a baby or not, put some baby powder in your beach bag. It helps get the sand off of your feet.
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You’re definitely going to want to pack some sunscreen. Make sure it’s waterproof and that got reapply it often. Sunscreens do contain toxins, so be mindful of this when you’re using sunscreen. We like Aveeno baby.
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Swim diapers are also a must. There are some Babyganics swim diapers out now that change color when the babies have been exposed to too much UV light, but I haven’t tried these. We like Huggies Little Swimmers.
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We wouldn’t have gotten by without this Pack ‘N’ Play. We used it as a crib for our baby and we also sat her in the Pack ‘N’ Play to play so she could crawl around without getting in the hotel room. If you don’t have a Pack ‘N’ Play, get one. They’re multi- useful 😛
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This one is gratuitous, but necessary. This is a battery operated fan and spray bottle. It’s great for cooling it by the ocean or pool and YOU NEED IT!!
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You’ll also need some sort of sun shelter, be it am umbrella or this neat pop up tent from Kohl’s for $59. We have a cheaper version of this thing, which we love but it can be difficult to fold back up.
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This concludes my list of must haves when traveling with babies. I hope you enjoyed it!!

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate Addict, The Turquoise Home, A Place of My Taste, The Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My Pinterventures, The Lady Prefers to Save, The Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish Cottage, Bluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential Mommy, Christine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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Weekend Reading

Apologies once more for the light posting schedule. I am on vacation this week and will resume regular schedule on Monday.

Right now I’m enjoying this gorgeous view:

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But when I’m not checking out the view or playing with my kids, here’s what I’m reading.

Thrifty Décor Chick: How to Get Rid of Unwanted Junk Mail in Three Easy Steps

Cute and Cheap July 4th Decorations

Southern Living: Homemade Ice Cream Recipes

BHG: Easy DIY projects: serving trays

Hope everyone has a blessed weekend!!

Week in Review Wednesday

Apologies for not posting yesterday. You see, I had something more important to do. Hang out with this girl.

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We started our day with breakfast at our favorite coffee shop. Then, we went to the doctor’s office for her kindergarten check up. After that, we went to Chick-fil-A and then to the splash pad at our local YMCA.

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We then went to the mall and did a little shopping. This is what happened on the way home.

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We had a great day and we made a lot of memories. Thanks for reading!

Mommy Mondays: Arranging your child’s clothing to encourage dressing themselves

My daughter just turned five this past weekend. She loves clothes and is independent in a lot of ways, but in other ways, she still needs lots of help.

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My daughter’s bedroom closet, while large, only boasted one high shelf and one closet rod. Last summer my dad and I made a vertical closet shelf and installed it in the middle, as well as adding more rods along the bottom. You can read about that here. 

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I decided to create a system in which she can reach everything she needs on a regular basis. Her winter hats, colored tights and coat hangers are all stored on the top shelf, since she doesn’t need them often. Her gymnastics clothes, swimsuits for swim class, underclothes, jammies, tops, bottoms and shoes, though? Right in her wingspan 🙂

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The boxes are actually diaper boxes that I covered in fabric. I made the labels with MS Word.

Her undies, jammies, swimsuits, hair accessories, shirts and shorts are stored in this dresser.

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Each drawer has a different function. Here is what her pajama drawer looks like. Her undies drawer is the most organized, but I’m not going to show my daughter’s undies on the Internet.

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We use drawer organizing baskets in the other drawers, but the tops and shorts don’t fit in them. I do try to keep them in neat folded stacks, but as I’m sure you can understand, my kiddo does actually get clothing out of these drawers, so they often look like this:

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Yikes. That’s one thing I’ve just had to let go of, but I do encourage her to help me re-fold and neaten up the drawers every week.

Having your child choose their own clothing and have access to all of it is a great help to them. Don’t forget, though- they do still need guidance in making presentable outfits. Check out my child in this colorful get-up:

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Thanks for reading, and we’ll see you tomorrow for a back porch retreat 🙂

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate Addict, The Turquoise Home, A Place of My Taste, The Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My Pinterventures, The Lady Prefers to Save, The Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish Cottage, Bluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential Mommy, Christine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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A birthday, a milestone, and a meltdown

Today, my sweet firstborn turns five. FIVE. No longer a toddler or preschooler. Indeed, she’ll be going to school in two months. She is so excited and I am so sad. *tear*

Five years ago, this little miracle came into the world three weeks early.

She was tough and spirited from the beginning, but sweet and loving, too. Those character traits have remained with her.

Looking at all these sweet pictures, I can’t imagine how five years might have passed so quickly.

*sniffle*

*boo hoo*

*cry*

*snort*

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Happy birthday, Sunshine. Mama and Daddy are so proud of you and we can’t wait to see what God has planned for your life. We love you to the moon and back!

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate Addict, The Turquoise Home, A Place of My Taste, The Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My Pinterventures, The Lady Prefers to Save, The Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish Cottage, Bluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential Mommy, Christine Everyday,  Little Miss Dexterous, and French Country Cottage!

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Laundry room reveal

As any DIY blogger/wife can probably tell you, sometimes it’s easier to ask for forgiveness than permission. That’s sometimes true in my house as well. While my husband couldn’t deny that our laundry room was not functional, he didn’t see my vision.

Since the birth of our second daughter this past fall, the laundry around here has more than tripled. Which isn’t surprising. Our laundry closet is located in our hallway, on the otherside of our bedroom wall. Before my dad and I got ahold of it, it consisted of a really high (read:unreachable unless you’re Lebron James) shelf and one rod. It used to look like this:

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That’s pretty bad, huh? And the fact that I couldn’t reach the shelves meant everything was stacked on the washer and dryer…where it  kept falling off in the floor during the spin cycle. 🙁

Enter my dad. He built these awesome shelves, which I love. I can reach them and I have room for everything.

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I also bought these great metal baskets from our local Dollar General. I love them.

I painted the shelves white and added this “wallpaper.” It is really shelf liner with an adhesive back. It’s easy to change out if you get tired of it and mostly easy to put up.
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I have wallpapered shelves before but never actual walls. From this experience, I learned wallpaper is a pain to install and I never want to do it again. Well,maybe in about ten years. After I did the wallpaper accent wall, I felt like something seemed off.
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The walls needed painting. So off I went to our local big box and picked up some grey paint.

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Hmmm. That’s better. Don’t you think?

Then, after I painted everything, I reloaded the shelves. Here is the finished product. Not too shabby, huh?
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Way better than the before.

I do want to talk to you about the challenges and lessons that came about from this project. The first is that wallpaper is a PAIN. I loved how it looked once I was done but I wanted so badly to give up several times. If you look closely there are several spots where mine isn’t perfect. I did my best to match up the pattern, but I’ll be honest. In the areas where the pattern is less visible, it isn’t all perfectly matched. I have learned from this experience that I don’t like wallpapering. If you hear me ever mention wanting to do it again, feel free to slap me.

Also, I did not tape the trim or ceiling. This is the first time I have ever painted a room and not used tape. I didn’t do a perfect job. There are places on our trim and ceiling that I need to touch up. I have learned that it is best to trim out a wall with a brush with a short brush and angled bristles. You also need to take your time and not hurry. A good quality brush is also better.

Other challenges include moving heavy appliances by myself. Don’t do this. Wait till you have someone to help you. I moved mine may enough to work around them and then almost got stuck behind them. I almost called my daughters’ daycares and told them off I didn’t show up to pick them up, to call 911 and send some EMTs to get me unstuck 😉 In the end, my back is sore but nothing bad or embarrassing happened.

And as for the hubs: when he called around four and informed me he hasn’t heard from me all day, he asked what I was up to. I swear that guy has a radar. When I told him I’d been working in the laundry room, he asked what else I’d done. When he got home from work and saw the finished product, I was surprised to see he likes it, too. Maybe he should turn me loose on a few more projects. Just saying.

I am happy with how this “room” turned out! Stay tuned for more updates soon!

Linking to StonegableWorthing CourtCedar Hill FarmhouseConfessions of a Plate Addict, The Turquoise Home, A Place of My Taste, The Happy Housie, The Blissful Bee, My Pinterventures, The Lady Prefers to Save, The Kolb Corner, Craving Some Creativity,  Let’s Get Crafty, Diane and Dean DIY,  Starfish Cottage, Bluesky Kitchen,  Potentially Chic,  McCall Manor, and Odds and Evans,  The Quintessential Mommy, Christine Everyday,  Little Miss DexterousDécor To AdorePoofing the PillowsAt Home With JemmaWhite Spray Paint,  and French Country Cottage!

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