March 20, 2019

Setting a Beautiful Springtime Table

Happy Spring y'all! I don't know about you, but I'm loving life against the backdrop of blooms and green. In honor of the season, I'm bringing some spring inside with a few ideas for setting a beautiful springtime table.

Don't feel like you have to go out and spend a lot of money. These ideas are simple to execute and affordable for any budget!

First, think about your background. Got a gorgeous table? Maybe leave it uncovered for some natural beauty this spring. Want to add a pop of color? Go bold with a brightly colored tablecloth. I like royal blue because it looks great against the colors of the season.

Then, add texture. Think table runners, placemats and chargers. These can help you add visual interest and create a more interesting look and feel.

Consider the dishes you want to use. I tend to stick with all white since they can be mixed and matched with anything....but if you love color, go all out! And don't feel like you have to be all matchy matchy. Combine patterns and colors to create a more exciting tablescape.

Accessories are when the real fun begins...I have some adorable little bird nests that I like to use. These were thrifted a few years ago and cost just a couple of bucks. I also like to incorporate elements like bunnies, ceramic flowers and small containers.

Don't forget to add natural elements! Pebbles, rocks, twigs or things you've collected can be really cute. And don't hesitate to snip a few branches from blooming shrubs or plants in your yard.

All of this can be combined in a lovely, affordable and simple-to-create spring tablescape!

March 6, 2019

Fun & Simple DIY Flower Arrangements for Spring

Spring is just around the corner and these last few weeks of winter can really start to wear me down. I'm bringing some springtime cheer to my home with a few fun and simple DIY flower arrangements to help welcome in the season.

I can't promise these will help spring come any quicker, but they will at least brighten up your home while you're waiting for those last days of winter to pass.

When I buy flowers, I usually just head to my local grocery store. You might think you have to go to a fancy florist, but with a little creativity you can turn simple grocery store flowers into some really beautiful arrangements, and you don't have to spend a ton of cash.

One way I like to create arrangements is with groupings of flowers or single stems in glass vases. You can use identical flowers (same type and color) or you can use all the same type (roses, daisies, etc) or just a variety of blossoms in the same color.

Get creative with your containers....don't feel like you have to opt for a plain old vase. If you collect something, put that to use. Pitchers, teapots or pottery all make great and lovely containers for a spring floral arrangement. I love using my collection of Ironstone pottery for this very purpose.

Need some container inspiration? Hit up your local thrift store. I scour the shelves for containers with a unique texture of shape. Don't love the color? Give it a new vibe with a fresh coat of spray paint.

And don't forget to think about your color palette when creating DIY floral arrangements. When Pantone released its 2019 color of the year as Living Coral, I was pretty excited. Coral has always been a favorite of mine. In fact, I used this shade for my wedding flowers a few years ago.

When in doubt, just grab flowers in a shade you love and they will be sure to cheer you up no matter the season!

March 2, 2019

Popcorn Ceilings

When I was little, I had a purple bedroom at the top of a big set of wooden stairs, on the second story of our house. I used to lay awake in my twin bed, under my Cabbage Patch Kids comforter, and count the ceiling tiles as I tried to fall asleep.

I'd count the columns across the top and then count the rows from top to bottom. Then I'd count the number of tiles in each and multiply them together to get a total number of tiles. Then I'd count each and every tile to check myself and make sure they were all still there.

It was an old house, with lots of little eccentricities, like a closet that connected two rooms through what I believed to be a secret passage.

However that was not the house I consider to be my childhood home.

My childhood home was a house where I lived for the longest with my family, five-ish years, before graduating and heading off to my so-called grown-up life. There were no ceiling tiles to count because that house has popcorn ceilings.

Every time I hear the term it make me think of something delicious. Apparently these are also sometimes called cottage cheese ceilings, and even though I like cottage cheese, this makes my stomach turn.

I'd lay in my bed and try to find some sort of pattern to make sense of the splats and spatters. When there was none, I counted other things instead. The number of days until my next birthday. How many pounds I thought I needed to lose in order to fit into a certain size of pants. How much time had passed since I'd last seen or heard from my biological dad.

Even now that I live in a home with smooth ceilings, I still count these things (16, 27, and case you were wondering).

We've had a lot of rain lately. I was sitting in my living room and happened to glance upward and saw a brown line on the ceiling that hadn't been there before. Water, as it always does, found a way in.

This is both disturbing (anybody got a good roofer?) and comforting at the same time. Comforting because it reminds me that things will find a way.

I've been a mess this week. I've been someone who in the past I would have judged...harshly. I just couldn't seem to hold it all together. And I'm terrible at asking for help. I want to do it all, on my own. And I want to reserve the right to feel self-righteous if I'm able to and mad as hell if I can't.

I can't be the only one like this. Surely there's more of us who struggle with this distinct flavor of malfunction. I know, I know....blame our childhoods, blah blah. And maybe I do feel an urge to blame on occasion.

But that doesn't really accomplish anything.

I don't have any wisdom here. Yet. I just know I woke up alive today and that's more than some can say.

Author Matt Haig says, "Be a mess. It's fine. The universe is a mess. Galaxies are drifting all over the place. To be tidy is to be out of tune with the cosmos."

And along those same lines, my own dear husband who mainly posts screenshots from 80s horror movies, shared this on Facebook:

“Consider again that dot [Earth]. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there - on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.” -- Carl Sagan

I'm clinging to my mote, praying for a sunbeam. I hope you can do the same. And if you happen to be staring up at the chaos of a popcorn ceiling, maybe you can find some beauty there too.