• colonial farmhouse deck summer ready with back and white umbrella and blue chairs black white and blue deck decor
    decorating,  gardening and landscape

    Our Deck Is Ready For Summer

    It’s almost Memorial Day, the unofficial kick-off to summer in the U.S., and our deck is ready for summer fun! And by fun, I mean eating. I have my priorities. Most of our dinners in the summer are eaten on the deck. Then there are the Double Ds. Drinks and dessert. Those are best enjoyed on the deck in the summer too. We’ll often turn on the party lights and sit on the deck with a drink in hand as the sun goes down and the temperature becomes tolerable pleasant. New Jersey summers are not to be trifled with. They can be hot, humid, and let’s not forget about the…

  • collection of ceramic crocks use a ceramic crock as a plant holder 17 uses for ceramic crocks

    17 Ways To Use Ceramic Crocks

    It’s not like I’ve polled everyone I’ve ever met, but so far, I haven’t met anyone who doesn’t think ceramic crocks are cool for one reason or another. They might not be their style and they might not own any but most people seem to acknowledge ceramic crocks have their place. Today, ceramic crocks are mainly used for home decoration but 200 years ago ceramic crocks were vital to survival. Yes, survival. We take refrigeration for granted today. Sometimes my kids just loiter in front of the open refrigerator doors letting all the cool air out while pondering their snack options. *sigh* Without a doubt, the invention of home refrigeration…

  • kitchen annex with wallpaper farmhouse with wallpapered flex space

    Wallpapered Kitchen Alcove With Multiple Uses

    I am thrilled to reveal our newly wallpapered kitchen alcove on the blog today! I didn’t know what to call this room, so I’m using the term kitchen alcove because it sounded like something a home that is almost 250 years old would have. However, this not-quite-a-hallway, not-quite-a-room is the ultimate flex space that we use for a variety of purposes. Its functions as a microwave station, a food pantry, a butler’s pantry, shoe storage, a junk drawer, a pool towel holder, a sunscreen station, the place where the lightbulbs go, a hallway to the bathroom, and more. PHEW! That’s a lot of hats for 30 square feet of space…

  • wood chandelier with ceiling medallion in a colonial era home in praise of ceiling medallions

    In Praise Of: Ceiling Medallions

    It doesn’t matter how decrepit a home is, whenever I see ceiling medallions in a home I think, “Ooh, fancy!” Is that your impulse too? That impulse is spot on. Ceiling medallions peaked in popularity in the mid to late 1800s. (source) This was the Victorian era and folks living then liked to make a bold statement in their homes with everything from elaborate trim to fussy furnishings. There was nothing subtle about the Victorians. If you had a ceiling medallion in the 1800s this meant you likely had a hanging light fixture of some sort and these items were signs of wealth. There’s nothing like your neighbor’s wealth hanging…

  • modern country laundry room in a colonial farmhouse with wainscoting stained glass horse art basket wall and inset wall shelves
    decorating,  DIY

    A Modern Country Laundry Room For Our Colonial Farmhouse

    If a modern country laundry room can be a thing, that’s what we created for our Colonial Farmhouse. The transformation of this modern country laundry room only took us 3 months, 13 days, and, oh fine…a while. It took us a good long while to finish. Either this project was more tedious than we originally anticipated or we actually found a life and hobbies outside of working on this house. Yeah…you’re not going to believe we have actual hobbies, so this project was probably just tedious…as all good projects are. Almost four years ago our laundry room looked like this. Sexy, wasn’t it? That photo was taken on the day…

  • sunny handwoven basket wall art from pottery barn in praise of basket walls

    In Praise of Basket Walls

    Basket walls, meaning baskets as wall decor, have been on my mind lately. Does that mean I’m turning into a basket case? Nah. That’s something entirely different. But give me time and that may happen! I, like many people, have not met a basket I didn’t love. Do I need all the baskets I love? Need is a relative term, but probably not. Do more baskets really make me more organized? In my ideal world, yes. Could I justify having more baskets if I used them as wall decor? I can make a strong argument for that. Baskets, when grouped together as wall decor, can provide a tremendous amount of…

  • storage problem solved utility wall created for brooms and mops when no closet is available

    No Utility Closet? Make An Utility Wall Instead.

    If your house is like mine and has no utility closet or logical spot to put a broom and mop, do not fret. Just don’t sweep or mop. Kidding! Make a utility wall instead. Functionally, all you need is a little bit of wall space and some hooks and you can create a utility wall. Don’t have wall space? That makes it trickier, but you might have the side of a tall kitchen cabinet or even the side of your refrigerator to use as a “wall.” But won’t it look bad to hang your dirty laundry broom, mop, dustpan, etc. out where everyone can see them? Possibly. I’m not going…

  • recent hone photos that made me smile baby grand piano in 200 year old home with piano harp art and silhouette art

    Recent Home Photos That Made Me Smile

    Today, I thought I’d share some recent candid home photos that made me smile. I’m forever captivated by the light in our home. Often when I’m walking through the house the light catches my eye and a scene I’ve seen thousands of times suddenly looks different. Special. Noteworthy. I really wish my camera could capture the feeling those fleeting moments evoke for me. Perhaps it’s the warmth from the afternoon light or just how lucky I feel that we get to live here. But that might be putting a lot of pressure on a camera. This view from my kiddo’s room that I cleverly cropped so you can’t see the…

  • my latest thrift store finds thrifted needlepoint art
    decorating,  thrifting

    My Latest Thrift Store Finds: Part 5

    Welcome to another round of My Latest Thrift Store Finds! We’re on part 5 of this story. How many parts will there be? It is anyone’s guess. As long as there are thrifted treasures to be found and a few bucks in my pocket, I’m there. I was trying to think of everything in our house that has been thrifted and decided it would just be easier to list the things I’ve purchased new such as mattresses, pillows, bed frames, the couch, recliner chairs in our bedroom, and rugs. Oh, and 20 years ago I bought the piano new. If I take care of it, it should last another 80…

  • 3 creative uses for a wood sewing machine cover. How to repurpose a wood sewing machine cover for home decor.

    3 Creatives Uses For A Wood Sewing Machine Cover

    Way back in the day, sewing machines were fancy. I’m talking capital F fancy. Some sewing machines were housed in ornate pieces of furniture that were prominent fixtures in homes. Later, as sewing machines became more portable but were still made of metal, not plastic, they didn’t stop being stylish. Not at all. That’s where the wood sewing machine cover comes onto the scene. In 1884, the Singer Sewing Machine Company introduced a bentwood sewing machine cover. This was a big technological achievement. In essence, Singer and their competitor, Wheeler and Wilson, figured out how to make plywood. Then, after much trial and error, the Singer Sewing Machine Company discovered that…