OMG shoe storage.

We’ve all seen it. The front door shoe pile. You come home from work or play and immediately take off your shoes, right? Everyday you add another pair of shoes to the mix, or maybe family or friends stop by and before you know it, your entryway looks like this:

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In our home, we have two locations to collect shoes. The front door is where many of our friends and family leave their shoes and the back door is where we store our shoes. To tame our shoe pile problems, we brought in two different storage solutions.

The Ikea bench near our back door is our traditional shoe storage solution. These benches are common in mud rooms and entryways. Just search Pinterest for “shoe bench” and you will find many ideas for your own shoe bench solution. The best part about a shoe bench is that you can sit down to take off or put on your shoes as well as store shoes, all in one place.

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If you are interested in a more creative idea for shoe storage, why not try a bookshelf that shows off your shoes as well as your friends’ shoes? In our foyer, we took a more creative and decorative approach to storing shoes. We wanted a way to display shoes that is fun and looks like it belongs in the foyer. Enter our Ikea Lack bookshelf:

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And when we do not have shoes filling every shelf, our bookshelf serves as a fun way to display my favorite heels. A beautiful pair of shoes = art.

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Do you have a fun or creative way to store your shoes? Tell us about it!

Have a great week!



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The New Guy

Meet Bentley, the newest addition to our family. He is a spunky gray tiger cat who loves to play and have fun.

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Bentley has kept us on our toes since the day we brought him home. He’s already made a few changes to our decor. He was a little curious one night and knocked over a milk jug vase we had hanging out in our foyer. Thankfully, Bentley was okay, the milk jug… not so much.

Lesson learned. After the milk jug, we picked up and put away any remaining breakables that Bentley might be able to reach or knock over.

We forgot what it was like to have a kitten in the house! He can be quite sneaky sometimes.

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So what does Zoey think of our new family member? You might say Bentley is still growing on her.

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Although Bentley hasn’t warmed Zoey’s heart (yet), he has brought us much joy. He is very loving and when you pick him up he purrs, and purrs. He also loves to snuggle and give nose bumps. I think he is going to grow up to be a lap kitty, but first he has to grow out of his playing phase. Bentley is like the Energizer bunny, going and going and going. He only stops to take a quick break and then he is back on the move again.

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Keep an eye out for Bentley in future photos.

Picking the Perfect Palette: The Loft

Fall is on its way and soon we will be diving in to our indoor home improvement projects. When it comes to painting our house, we always wait until the weather is cool enough to open the windows and pull in some fresh air. Fall is usually a great time because the air is not too moist and sticky. In the meantime, we are deciding on the color that we will paint our half wall in the loft and hallway. I chose a palette of yellow, blue and blue/green paint chips for our alma mater color scheme and taped them to the wall using painter’s tape. Now we can see our choices on the wall while we make our decision.fbfs_colorchoices (6)With this palette, I chose complimentary colors to our existing room colors. We have several different shades of blue in our room which is why I chose the blue and blue/green chips for our palette. I chose the gold and yellow chips to complement our maize yellow pillows. I like the idea of the golds being closer to the shade of the pillows because we do not have several different shades of gold existing in the room.

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The color that we choose for the loft will carry around the half wall and down the catwalk hallway. With that being said, we need to choose a color that compliments both the loft and the hallway. I think I’m leaning toward the golds,  but I can’t make up my mind. I also really like the blues. Decisions, decisions.

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On another note, you might’ve noticed that we have new curtains in our loft. I liked the previous curtains, but they were slightly to short. Some folks like their curtains to be just above the ground but I prefer the curtains to touch the ground. Finding out the curtains I bought were too short was definitely a lesson learned. Always measure before you buy! fbfs_colorchoices (4) copy

When I went back to West Elm, where I bought our gray curtains, I found the same pattern in dark blue. I like the dark blue even better than the light gray and this time I made sure to buy a longer length. fbfs_colorchoices (2) That’s it for now. I’ll keep you posted on our paint chip selection process!

Fantastic Foyer

Hello everyone! We hope you had a great Fourth of July! We had a great time celebrating with family this holiday.

So, you might be asking, what have we been up to lately? Well… a lot, actually. Keep your eye out for new posts coming soon.

Up first is our recent foyer updates. A few months ago, we started designing a larger layout for our existing foyer photo collage. We finally finished the collage and also added some artwork and and a mirror to our foyer. Since we brought in our (very heavy) 22ft ladder for the collage, we decided to go ahead and hang our artwork and mirror before we put the ladder away again.

You might remember the paper templates I created to map out where we would hang out new additions to our photo collage. Not only did they help us to visually see how we planned to hang the photos, they also served as a way to tell where to place the nail on the wall. Once we hammered the nail hole using the paper template, we removed the paper, put the nail(s) back in the wall and then placed all the photos.

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In order to hammer on the wall, we first removed all of the photos and left their nails in the wall. I took a picture (seen above) of all the photos so we would remember how they were arranged. While the frames were down, I swapped a few of the photos for new. After we finished hanging the frames we got out our trusty level.
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And here is our finished collage!

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Thanks to a friend who told me about the Kirkland’s Friends and Family sale a few months ago, we found a great inexpensive mirror to hang in our foyer and help distribute the light from the window. Here is the empty wall before the mirror:
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And after:

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From the upstairs guest bedroom there is a nice view of the stairs from our new mirror.

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In addition to the mirror, we also found an inexpensive painting to hang above my office door. I love the scene in the picture. It’s raining but the bright red umbrella looks so cheery. My mom also said that the couple in the photo remind her of BJ and me. 🙂 I would definitely wear that coat.
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Here are a few more photos of our updated foyer, including BJ’s Formula One vintage wooden photo. I posted a photo of it on our Instagram.
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How do you dress up a large wall? With photos, artwork, or both?

Pinterest Picks: Summer Table Settings

Summer is almost here and I’m so excited! The first official day of summer is still a few weeks away but I’m already thinking about BBQs, picnics and pool parties.

I’m looking forward to enjoying dinners out on our patio again. To spruce up our outdoor decor, I bought this yellow-green hurricane for our patio bistro set during the Crate and Barrel 20% off outdoor sale.

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Inside of the hurricane, we added an indoor/outdoor battery-operated led candle from Target.

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Our new hurricane inspired me to put together a fun summer table arrangement for our bistro set. To find some ideas I searched for “summer table setting” on Pinterest.

Here are a few of my favorite pins:

I love how the table setting below incorporates red, white and blue as well as a coastal theme with the seashells. The yellow flowers also give off a bright summery feel.

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This table setting incorporates a few of my favorite summer colors. I love the bright yellow and green dinnerware and patterned napkins.

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I love lanterns and this table setting reminded me of our wedding. For our wedding, we incorporated lanterns as our table arrangements. We still have the lanterns and use them in our home decor.

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This summer table setting is simple and classy. The clear milk jug vases and white flowers are an elegant touch. I could definitely see us incorporating a simple flower arrangement in our own summer table setting.

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This last table setting is a fun way to use fresh fruit in a centerpiece. You could even put a cute little sign in the fruit arrangement that says “please enjoy.”

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After I looked at all of the summer table settings on Pinterest, I put together this setting  for our bistro set. What do you think?


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Geraniums, Gerberas, Petunias and a Calla Lily, Oh My!

We hope you had a great Memorial Day weekend. BJ and I enjoyed a few days with my parents and even did a little mowing and gardening on Monday.

To catch you up on our outdoor projects, a few Sundays ago we had an incredibly productive day. We went to Lowes in the morning to pick up a few gardening supplies and flowers, and then we went home and started planting our vegetable garden and potting plants.

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The same Sunday that I planted our vegetable garden (an update on that soon), I also planted the flower pots on our front porch.

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BJ and I chose brightly colored gerberas daisies for our flower pots. Gerberas daisies are one of my favorite flowers! BJ and I love the bright colors, which is why we also chose them as our wedding flowers.

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Earlier this Spring, my mom brought us two old ceramic pots that she stained in ceramic class when I was a little girl. We’ve had these pots in our family for a long time and my grandmother also has a set.

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When my mom offered the ceramic pots to us, I immediately thought to use them to dress up our back patio, however, after I potted them, I liked them better for our front porch. I chose geraniums for the pots in red in white.

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The Monday night following our productive Sunday, I planted petunias in the flowers beds out front.

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We had such great luck with our petunias last year that I decided to plant even more this year. Yesterday, I planted pink petunias to go along with the purple and fuchsia candy-striped petunias I planted two weeks ago.

While I was planting yesterday, I also added this beautiful calla lily to our garden.

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I think our front two gardens might be complete for a few months. 🙂 Now we just have to maintain them throughout the summer.

Here’s a view of our two front gardens. We’re building some pretty nice curb appeal!
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Fireplace Spruce Up

Happy Saturday! I hope everyone is enjoying their weekend so far. We’ve been busy working on DIY projects and plans and I will have new posts to share with you soon.

Before we dive into our latest projects, I wanted to share some small decor upgrades we made to spruce up the look of our fireplace.

I found this large blue vase and sand blasted milk jug at Target during their Threshold sale a few weeks go. I’ve had my eye on the blue vase for a while and when it went on sale, (and I had a coupon) I couldn’t resist bringing it and the milk jug home.

After we added the vase and milk jug to the area in front of the fireplace, I decided to swap the flowers in the tall vases for white dahlias.

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The yellow bloom twigs in the large blue vase came from Michael’s.
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I like varying depths and dimensions that the vases add to the space. And Zoey’s blanket basket is still close by so she can sleep in one of her favorite spots.

More posts coming soon!