Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Wintery + Woodsy Front Porch

During this hectic season, we barely have time to keep up with our own thoughts, let alone read, so I thought I’d just to do a quick hello and glimpse onto our frosty front porch.

plumberry pie wreath as centerpiece

{wreath on the confetti dot table, dressed with dollar store snowflakes}

plumberry pie front porch pot filled with birch logs, grapevine ball, cedar roping and silver ornaments

Last year, I was inspired by my friend’s pots filled with birch logs and tucked it away in my memory bank for this year.  These pots seriously make me giddy.  I’m in love.

plumberry pie winter front porch pot

plumberry pie baby it's cold outside chalkboard

Oh, Dollar Tree, oh, Dollar Tree, how I love thee Dollar Tree.  Don’t you though?  Those pretty snowflakes adorning the chalkboard are Dollar Tree finds.

plumberry pie winter chalkboard

Cold outside, it is!  So I’m heading back in where it’s warm!

plumberry pie - embellish a wreath with words

Wishing you all the JOY of the season and throughout the year!

- Kim -

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Advent Wreath + The Gift of Thanks

One of the neatest things about blogging is when someone sends a thank you note for something I shared.  It warms my heart and blows me away every time.  Thanks from a complete stranger, it is indescribable.  And how small the world becomes to connect with people all over the map. 

So the other day, I received this note from Kelly.  It made my day!

Kim --
Found your Nov 2011 Advent Wreath on Pinterest and it inspired me to create one of my own. 

Thanks for the inspiration,


Kelly's Advent wreath

{Kelly’s Advent Wreath}

Well, Kelly, thank you for making my day!  Your interpretation of the Advent wreath is beautiful!  (You can see my version of the Advent wreath here.)

So that has me thinking… the power of thanks and gratitude…WOW!  It was such a simple gesture that made such a huge impact on my day.  What an easy gift to give to those around you.

Who will you give this gift to today?

Monday, December 2, 2013

A Thanksgiving Table Fit for Any Gathering

Well, hello there!  Long time, no blog.  My world has been turned upside down, but I hope to pop in here a bit more just like the old days.  I have so much to tell you, but for now, let’s just start with our Thanksgiving table.  This was a “use what you have on hand at the moment” kind of table.

Starting with a cream table cloth that we’ve had since we got married, layered with gold wrapping paper and a navy chevron wrapping paper on top of it.  I absolutely love using wrapping paper for table settings.  It’s cheap and opens a world of endless options and if it gets spilt on, no worries.

plumberry pie blog casual table

For our centerpiece, I used fruit and nuts that were already in the house.

plumberry pie blog casual thanksgiving table

Didn’t bother with the china and used my everyday white.  I love white dishes.  They work for everything and make food look fabulous!  I used tags and my handy dandy washi tape for place setting tags.  Just tied them around the flatware with jute and used a gold Sharpie to write “thankful for you” to each person.

plumberry pie blog  washi tape place setting tags

plumberry pie blog  thankful for you

My love for trays continues.  They truly upgrade the look of a few bottles of wine on a counter to a little bar area.

plumberry pie blog use a tray to make any spot a bar

And here’s a full view to give you a peek at the almost finished family room.  You can see the gallery wall and the shelves are back in place.

plumberry pie blog thanksgiving table family room

Well, that’s it for now.  We had a busy Thanksgiving weekend, including a mad scientist birthday for my son.  Hope to share some details with you sometime soon!  And there may just be a series called Never Before Seen Rooms.  Stay tuned…

Monday, November 18, 2013


Well, I feel a bit rude leaving you hanging there from my last post with an almost done room and then radio silence.  First, thank you, thank you, thank you for all the sweet comments.  Oh my goodness, they truly warmed my heart and felt like a big hug.  I appreciate all the supportive and kind words more than you know.

Oh, and I also left you hanging on a Baltimore post I promised.  Geesh, that’s not very nice.  It’s like when you put your hand up for a high five and you’re left hanging waiting for a return high five.  Not cool. Smile

Anyhow, everyday life stuff continues to put up barricades to my progress over here and rather than stretch myself so thin that I snap, I have pretended it’s finished.  And really, it’s pretty much done (except for the baseboard and the trim and the this and the that, but really, it’s pretty much done – ha!).  I just haven’t been able to get the room picture ready to share.  I put up the gallery wall, but honestly, not feeling it.  Not sure if my pieces are too heavy visually or if it’s this one piece throwing everything off.  It’s feeling cluttered.

So just like the post title says, I just stopped in to say hello today.  Was missing blogging, but can’t put my focus on it at the moment. 

Have a wonderful week, my friends!!  Hope all is well.

- Kim

Friday, November 8, 2013

One Room Challenge Reveal {just a peek}

Yesterday I was hoping I would have a post up and the angels would be singing with beams of light shining down on the finished room, but life happens.  I had a man down sick last week and I caught a bug this week, so the last two weeks were a bust.  Instead of pulling an all-nighter to get it done, yesterday I chose to curl up under three blankets on the couch and head to bed early.

Admittedly, I was bummed this morning, but thanks to Lisa at Shine Your Light, I am here to celebrate what I’ve accomplished in 6 weeks.  Her encouraging words reminded me that I’m much further than I was 6 weeks ago and that’s something to celebrate too.  By the way, you must check out Lisa’s reveal…another black wall of awesomeness to fuel my obsession for dark walls

So let’s see what I was able to check off my list from my week one checklist.

Paint the walls Owl Gray.  Check

Hang bamboo blinds.  Check

plumberry pie bamboo shades layered curtains

Paint bookcases white with dark back.  Check

plumberry pie white bookcase with dark back

Gallery wall.  Umm, does one picture count?

plumberry pie gallery wall art

I’m so close to the finish line and will be back soon to show you the full reveal!  Thanks to Linda for hosting this because if it weren’t for you, I’d still be sitting here just thinking about all the stuff I want to do.  Thanks to Linda for encouraging us every week too and putting things in perspective for me yesterday. Smile  Make sure to check out the rest of the linking participants finished rooms at Linda's.  Oh, and while you’re there, check out Linda’s ORC family room makeover on her Wednesday post.  Magazine beautiful.  You are sure to be inspired.

To see the progression over the six weeks, check out these posts.

Week One

Week Two

Week Three 

Week Four

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Reveal Day for Official ORC Participants–Must See!

Today is reveal day for the 20 official One Room Challenge participants!  The ladies have outdone themselves and there’s something to inspire anyone’s style preference.  Believe me, you won’t be disappointed.  Make sure to grab a cup o’ something and enjoy some awesomeness.  Thanks again to Linda at Calling It Home for dreaming up this thing.  Hopefully I’ll be back tomorrow with my reveal as a linking participant.  At this moment, it looks like an all nighter.  Wish me luck!

Monday, November 4, 2013

One Room Challenge Week 5+: Not Much To Show For It

Aaack!  There’s been so much going on around here, but not in the family room.  You know, when it rains, it pours.  Yeah, like that.  Soooo, I kind of missed my five week update, but truly there wasn’t much to show for it anyhow.  My father-in-law hung my drapes higher and wider, I changed out my recessed lighting for LED kits and thanks to all of you and your feedback, finally decided to keep the new brass table.

I was so glad that the masses said to keep the brass table saving me from painting the old one.  Yippeeeeeeee!  I couldn’t even fathom painting another thing….especially since I haven’t finished the bookcases, the baseboards or trim on the walls.  Time is closing in on me.  Eek!  I’m losing confidence that I’ll actually pull this off by Thursday.  But either way, I’m much further than I was before, right?!

Thank you so much for the comments and support.  That has been the best thing about this entire process.  Today I hope to knock some things off my list.  And tomorrow, I hope to be back to share some Baltimore with you.  I went to Baltimore this weekend for a wedding and believe it’s one of America’s best kept secrets for a fun getaway.  Sorry for the non-update update and no pictures too – geesh.  Hope to have something to show for myself on Thursday. 

Happy Monday!

- Kim

Friday, October 25, 2013

Five Ways to Make your House your Home

There are some things I’ve learned along the way of trying to create a space that fits our family.  Often times, I think we fall into the trap of “what it’s suppose to be” or “what others will think”.  Here are a few things to keep in mind on your journey to creating a home just right for you and your family.

  1. Break some rules.  Really I think this is the biggest thing to remember.  Just because it’s suppose to be a formal dining room and living room, doesn’t mean it has to be one.  If your family doesn’t do formal, then turn it into a space that is more usable for your family.  We decided, rather than create a space that looks pretty, but gets no use, we turned our formal dining room and living room into the least formal rooms of all – the playroom / craft room / homework room.  It serves our family better this way.  And an added bonus is that the table we set up in the craft room/homework room can double as an extra dining table for parties and holidays.  Also, think outside the box of what an item is typically used for.  A shower curtain can be so much more than a shower curtain.  It can be new drapes or fabric for a new pillow or hidden toy storage.hidden toy storage - plumberry pie
  2. Take a risk.  Don’t be afraid to just try something.  Sometimes it won’t work out, but many times you’ll find it was worth the risk.  There were definitely a bunch of doubters when I said I wanted to pull out the carpet and paint the subfloor.  Now that I’ve finally done it, I am so happy I did.  And the doubters became believers.  And of course, I’m not talking about taking risks with high ticket items when the potential loss is not worth the risk.
    peek in playroom oct 2013 plumberry pie

    Plumberry Pie Teal Painted Subfloor{The Happy Hallway}

  3. Embrace what YOU love, not what you think others would like.  Who lives in your home?  You.  Make it for you, not visitors.  If shag carpet and avocado green get you giddy, then do it.  Forget about what others think.  Your home should be your haven and feel like a big hug.
  4. Don’t just make it pretty, make it functional.  And make it functional for your everyday life, not for that once a year party.  You can always adjust for guests when they come, borrow chairs and tables, etc.  If you only entertain once a year, is it worth having accommodations for 25 when you have a family of five?
  5. Shop your home first.  Just by rearranging and borrowing from other rooms, I’ve been able to change things up in my home.  Often times we get settled in and forget about certain items.  They regain a new life and can change a room’s vibe just by moving it somewhere else.  These lamps once lived in our playroom, but completely gave new life to this table in our foyer.IMG_0598

I’m definitely no expert, but these are just some things I’ve learned along the way.  Hope they help you as you make your space your own!

Enjoy your weekend! 

- Kim

Thursday, October 24, 2013

One Room Challenge Week 4: Bookcases + End Table

Hello there!  Thanks for stopping in today!  So glad you’re here!  If you’ve missed the first three weeks, you can find them below.

Week One                         Week Two                          Week Three

Okay, so this week I decided to tackle the bookcases.  It was just what I needed to keep me going.  Seeing them transform and seeing how they transformed the space has given me back some mojo.  These guys are making me happy!

bookcases in process

Just look at the difference painting the bookcases makes on the room.  Before….

brown table

…after-ish (in progress).  Sooo much better!  Of course my second grader doesn’t agree, but that is to be expected.  And my 7th grader gasped and had to make sure that I wasn’t actually leaving the bookcases right in front of the fireplace.  In good, old-fashioned, middle school tone of voice, “you’re not leaving them here, are you, mom?!!”

pops of accessories against dark backin on bookcase

On Monday, I mentioned that I was having trouble deciding on what to do with this end table.  With some validation from my friend Jennifer at Dimples & Tangles, I finally decided on painting it in the family of blue/teal/turquoise as my definite game plan.  And then…I stumbled upon this brass table at Home Goods the very same day (and that awesome fuzzy blanket). 

brass table

Also found this other heavenly, soft, blanket bliss!

gray fuzzy blanket

Okay, back to the table situation.  I like how the table picks up on the brass details on the console table.

brass detail on table linking to brass table

It is still very tone on tone, borderline blending into the brown couch, but I think the metallic quality and it’s interesting pattern and shape make it work. 

corner view of couches with table

room view with brass table

Or am I just trying to convince myself it works because I really DON’T want to paint another thing?  I would love your thoughts…paint existing table or go with the new one?  Whatcha think?

Paint this one…

brown table

…or keep this one?

room view with brass table

In the next couple weeks, I need to get the bamboo blinds up/find ones I like, install the gallery wall and finish unfinished projects like painting trim work.  And this lamp is getting a little facelift.  It may get an upgrade from its gold duct tape hat to a nice black one.  We’ll see.

lamp before

There are a couple items that probably won’t fall within the 6 week challenge - the rug situation and slipcovering the chair.  I want to get things done, but don’t want to settle on something I’m not sure on just to get it done either.

Make sure to stop by Linda’s to see the 20 bloggers doing the Official ORC and the participants (like me) playing along in the Link Up ORC.

Thanks again for stopping by.  See you next week for the another update!

Have a great weekend!

- Kim

Monday, October 21, 2013

Thinking Out Loud: Random Happy + Your Help

Do you have those random moments when something as simple as a bowl of tomatoes can make you happy inside?  Every time I walk by this bowl full of green tomatoes, I get that random happy feeling.  Don’t know what it is…the shade of green, the fact it came from our garden.  Just random happy.

green tomatoes

And my daughter keeps poking happy moments in there for me by revisiting things I loved when I was a girl.  I’m not even sure how my daughter heard of Annie, but ever since, she’s been bugging me to watch it.  A few years ago, I bought the movie for $5 at Target knowing I’d want to watch it with my daughter one day.  Well, that one day was this Saturday.  My husband was on a Cub Scout campout with my youngest and my oldest was intently focused on the Notre Dame game, so Little E and I took that golden moment to watch it.  I forgot how much I loved every.single.song.  Those songs just make you happy.  We couldn’t help but tap our feet around, stand up and dance a little.  Good stuff! 


What’s not making me happy is that round, brown table.  I can’t for the life of me figure out what color to paint it.  I was going to strip it down to its bare wood, but don’t have the patience in me to strip the fluted legs and curves.  I’m lazy like that.  I need new eyes and ideas from you.  I’ve been staring at it too long.  Some options…white, but the console right next to it is white and the two bookcases will be white (bookcases will be in the corners flanking the fireplace).  A tuquoise-ish color or good old black….maybe coral.  Or something totally different?  What do you think? 

brown table

Also, still undecided on the rug. Is it too much to have black and white striped with the pattern on the windows and pillows? (those curtains will be longer by the way).  Been thinking about a blue rug instead, but hate to tie myself to a color that can’t easily be changed for little money.  All right friends, I’m open to your awesome ideas!  Throw them at me.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Flashback Friday: Fall + Halloween Ideas

Hey there!  Happy Friday!  On top of the One Room Challenge, life in general has been super busy lately, so I thought I’d do a little flashback today.  I haven’t gotten my Halloween groove on this year yet, but I have a ton to share from last year.

First, let’s start with a quick flashback of fall this year.  They are more subtle and nature inspired.

The Mantel

feathers for fall mantel


The Console Table Vignette

feathers in a cloche - plumberry pie


The Front Porch

{plumberry pie} fall porch table


Looking for Halloween ideas, here’s a good start.

Halloween Around the House

halloween collage


fox 2 set eye ball cookies and bones

Have a great weekend!


Thursday, October 17, 2013

One Room Challenge Week 3: Painting Paneling + a Gold Garden Stool

I told myself that if I got nothing else done in these six weeks except paint the walls, then it was a success.  Our walls have been wearing several different paint colors at the same time for longer than I can even remember.  So this week, painting the walls got scheduled into my calendar as a must do.  And I was dreading it.  Painting is not my favorite, yet painting is one of the biggest bang for your buck things you can do.  So alas, it is a necessary evil.

But most of the things we dread doing are the things that give us the most satisfaction in the end.  So glad to check it off the list.  And just a quick tip for you if ever have to paint paneling.  I found out right away that it was very helpful to use my paintbrush to get in the grooves first, then go back and roll the wall.

painting paneling - plumberry pie

I also painted the garden stool from my back deck.  I’m trying to use as much as I have on hand to keep this makeover budget friendly.  It got the golden touch.  First go around, I used a matte gold finish and it had a greenish tint to it and blended too much with the furniture.

garden stool beforegarden stool after take one

So I painted a gloss gold finish and it worked out much better.

golden garden stool plumberry pie

I’m having rug commitment issues.  I tried a layered rug look using the rug I had from our first house.  In my mind, the rug looked like the overdyed rugs you’re seeing all over the place these days.  I think my memory was playing wishful thinking tricks on me though.  The rug is much more maroon/burgundy than I remember.  My wishful thinking had it as a lighter red that was faded.  Boo!  So much for saving a buck on that one.

layered rug with old rug on sisal

I’m also toying with the idea of black and white stripes, so I threw a black and white beach towel on there to get a feel for it.  Layered.

striped towel layered on rug

And on its own.  I’m liking it.

striped towel

IKEA’s Stockholm rug is in the running.

STOCKHOLM Rug, flatwoven IKEA The durable, soil-resistant wool surface makes this rug perfect in your living room or under your dining table.

I also like this one from Rugs USA, but thinking stripes will stand the test of time and mix better with the curtains and pillows. 

Rugs USA Homespun Trellis HK85 Blue Rug

Or this one from Urban Outfitters.

Magical Thinking Chevron Rug

This week coming up, I need to finish painting the baseboards and bookcases white.  Also hoping to get the window treatments up and take care of some lighting issues. 

Thanks for stopping in today and to any new visitors, welcome, so glad you’re here!!  If you missed the first two weeks, you can see them at the links below.

Week One:  Inspiration Pics

Week Two:  Console Table Makeover

And of course, check out what everyone else is up to this week for their ORC over at Linda’s {Calling It Home}.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

One Room Challenge Week 2: Painting, Purging, Prepping

Hello again!  Thanks for checking in!  Before I could get going on this room, I used it as an opportunity to purge.  First, I needed to clear out the playroom stuff and put it back in the playroom now that the floors are done. 

Once I cleared some stuff away, I started prepping and planning for the gallery wall.  That is the thing that’s got me the most stressed I think.  Arranging and rearranging to create the right flow and mix of sizes and colors.  Some pieces need to be framed, so there is still much to do in figuring out that wall.

gallery wall prep - plumberry pie

I also started researching bamboo shade options.  I grabbed these from Lowes.  They’re the direction I want to take, but I wish the coloring was a bit warmer.  It’s a tad too yellow.  This picture is actually reading better than real life, so maybe it will be okay.  I’m painting this door black and moldings white.  That may help too.  Another possible option might be to do a light stain wash over it, but I’d rather not.  So I’m keeping my eyes open.

bamboo shade from Lowes - plumberry pie

And this is sort of cheating.  When I was painting a table for the playroom, I painted this console table for the family room weeks before the ORC.  It used to look like this.


There are brass campaign style corners that I still need to clean up and pop back on.  I love the impact it makes in the room already.

table makeover and fall decor - plumberry pie

I was so excited about the change, I styled it up with fall accents from my friend mother nature.  She always has the best stuff!

fall vignette with natural elements - plumberry pie

feathers in a cloche - plumberry pie

natural fall vignette - plumberry pie

That’s about it for now.  Hoping to get more painting done this week…walls and/or bookcases and maybe a garden stool.

To see the spaces that inspired the changes in this room, check out Week One of the ORC here.

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