Tag Archives: stay at home mom

Spring, Please Come Back

This past weekend pretty much embodied what a rollercoaster this spring has been. We spent Saturday outdoors, grilling steaks in the sun, finally remembering what it was like to not need a heavy coat, not even a jacket. And then just a day later, we sat inside a winery tasting room and watched as snowflakes fell. Ugggghhhhhhh.

You would think that with all the time we’ve spent indoors as of late, all the hours spent wondering how we should stay productive and NOT rot away in front of the television that I would have gotten a few more blogs posted. But this brutal winter has made it REALLY difficult for me to find motivation to do anything except gut it out. Instead of continuing to whine about how we still have scarves and furry hats out in at the END of March or that there is still a bag of salt sitting out of the front porch because they’re again calling for snow tomorrow, I’m trying to think about all of the things that I will look forward to when the sun returns.

  1. One less thing to say no to. I have a nineteen month old. She happens to love the following: pulling open every drawer, dumping out every bag she can get her hands on, pouring milk out of sippie cups, and just generally making messes. I really hate messes. I also really hate how often I find myself saying no to that curious little one. And almost every day this winter we’ve been going through this little dialogue. Mama? Outshide? Snow. She shuts down her own question before I can even answer. I mean really my one-year-old must think she’s being raised in Siberia. But someday soon I’ll be able to respond YES everyday to that sweet little request!
  1. Walks. I love being able to walk places. Especially with a baby, it’s a huge pain to load them up in the car and have a destination point in mind. I like to wander, get fresh air, exercise without thinking about it. Plus Henry is getting a little chunky, poor little guy has been so cooped up and sedentary.
  1. Seeing green. I lived in Utah for eight years. While the west has it’s own kind of beauty, my heart always longed for the rolling green hills of Virginia. I NEED GREEN, please. I’m sick of bare branches and a world covered in snow or mud.
  1. Seeing people. I literally haven’t seen most of my neighbors since November. I mean are we bears?!!
  1. Shower beer. Don’t judge and definitely don’t knock it till you’ve tried an icy cold beer in a steamy shower on a hot summer day. Literally. Nothing. Better. These days all I want is red wine, which basically just means I’m really cold. 
  1. Sandals. I never thought I would say it, but I’m SO sick of boots. My feet need to breath, my toes need to be seen again.  
  1. Tan line. I need one. That’s it.
  1. No longer resenting my dog for making me walk him first thing in the morning. I mean it’s not Henry’s fault. Really I should think less about how mad I am for having to bundle up and go outside and more about how much it would suck to have to poop in snow.
  1. Less bronzer. Can I please just have some sun-kissed cheeks? And really, at this point bronzer only works so well on skin this pale.  
  2. Goodbyes to layers. I’m all about effortless style. Now that I’m a mom, I don’t have the whole morning to accessorize. Instead of pulling my socks on BEFORE my jeans so they don’t get bunched up under my boots, figuring out what scarf to pair with my shirt and what purse will go with the scarf AND my coat, I’m dreaming of the day when I simply slip into sandals, pull on a sundress and GO. The only layering I want to have to think about is which dress to wear over my bikini.

Hopefully we won’t have to wait much longer for these small dreams to come to life. I mean spring HAS to come at some point, right? Are polar vortexes possible in April? Don’t answer that. Here are a couple (ONLY a couple) of rare moments we’ve been able to enjoy outside this spring.

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This Is What HGTV Does To Me

One of the challenges that comes when you move from a 1,200 square foot house to a 3,500 square foot house is furnishing all of those empty rooms. Our new house is one we can thankfully grow into, but we still want it to look furnished and loved before we expand our brood. We have been trying to take it slow, filling and decorating each room one by one. Four months of living here, and I have one room done. And even as I’m saying that, I immediately start questioning the “completed” dining room… wait, do I need curtains on the other window? Is that rug working? Should it be bigger? What about the candles… really they should be replaced with something more wintry looking come December, right? 

In order to protect the bank account, we’ve tried to go the DIY route when we can. Fortunately, living in Loudoun means we are surrounded by consignment shops and antique stores where I can hunt for good finds. Plus, I’m at stay at home mom… I watch way too much HGTV and I love a good project to tackle during nap time! We have also discovered that it’s really fun to do these projects together, which is sort of shocking considering any home improvement endeavors we’ve tackled as a team have pretty much been the opposite. But there’s a huge difference (to me) between hanging curtains and restoring old furniture. Much more relaxing and fun than drilling too many holes in the wall while your one year old tries to put bolts in her mouth. So, Josh will do any sanding or steps that require tools, and then I handle the painting. Having a garage now also really helps. I just plug in the baby monitor while Hadley is down and get as much done as I can. Here’s a little showcase of some of our efforts. 

BEFORE

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Here’s the before. We found this piece marked down at the Old Lucketts Store to $40. It was in really good shape, just needed a little sanding on the top and a good scrub. We did two coats of chalk paint and a coat of wax on top.

AFTER

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And now here she is in my sitting room. It’s one of my favorite pieces in our house and Josh is happy to have a place to put his decanter – which is needing a bourbon refill.

BEFORE

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Sorry, this before picture is really bad but I forgot to take one and this is the only picture I could find documenting what it used to look like. My sister Megan generously gave us her old sideboard. We sanded it down and did three coats of Benjamin Moore Summer Nights. We also spray painted the hardware oil rubbed bronze.

AFTER

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I love neutrals, so adding this bright pop of blue was really scary to me but I’m really happy with the results!

We are also currently spray painting our brass door knobs and hinges to oil rubbed bronze. We have most of the downstairs and about half of the upstairs complete. Turns out, we have a LOT of doors! But it really makes a huge difference. 

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                                      Just imagine all of the brass. Looks so much better.

Now I just need to be better at documenting my before and afters. Totally the best part of any DIY project and also why I was up too late last night to watch the reveal on Love it or List It. Hilary totally nails it every time. 

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