40 Things I have learned in 40 years

I just turned 40.

Not everyone gets to see their 40th birthday. I am thankful I got to spend it with my husband, daughters and my parents.

My peeps made me feel very special for my 40th birthday. My oldest daughter made me a gift basket with all of my fav things: soft socks, sweater with a matching shirt, Burt’s Bees, my fav brand of chocolate and my fav drink. My husband made my favorite meal and searched hell and high water to find me the Tres Leches cake that I wanted. He also bought me a purse that I have wanted for years. My youngest two littles made little birthday decorations and handmade cards. My mom and dad bought me the matching wallet to go with my purse that my hubs bought for my birthday. I received many birthday texts and emails, wishing me a happy birthday from other family and friends.

As a person who is normally planning birthday parties, it felt pretty good to be the object of so much love and thoughtfulness.

40 Things I have learned in my 40 years of life:

1) Your relationship with Jesus is the most imporant. Cultivate it. Don’t let days go by without making time for Him.

2) God’s timing is not always our timing. Also, God’s plans aren’t always our plans either.

3) Do not let the sun go down on your anger. If you need to work out something with someone, TALK. TO. THEM. Have you prayed more about the problem, more than you have talked about the problem with others? 

4) Be willing to be vulnerable.

5) Life isn’t fair but God is good. 

6) Learn something new as often as you can.

7) It does not matter what other people think. 

8) Give grace and second chances.

9) Always be on time. 

10) Write it down and make reminders on your phone, so you don’t forget the important stuff!

11) Dogs and kids are good for your soul.

12) Take pictures and videos. 

13) Change can be hard, try to embrace it.

14) Everybody has a story and a struggle. 

15) Having children has taught me how to appreciate my parents.

16) Speaking of parents, I believe that most parents do the best they can do, yet sometimes make mistakes.

17) Kids don’t come with rule books. 

18) When renovating your home, add extra money to your budget. Unexpected things always come up.

19) Practice grattitude, no matter where you are in your life.

20) Put down your phone. Take a social media break.

21) Talk to children like they matter!

22) Your body will feel so much better if you exercise during the week. 

23) Speaking of your body, what you eat is important. Organic veggies, fruits and grass fed meats. I always have people tell me that I never look my age. It’s because of what I put inside my body. Think about it: If you drink cokes all during the week, along with a fast food or unhealthy diet, think about how your skin will look. Think of food as nourishment that is healing our bodies. 

24) Drink water everyday.

25) Live as chemial free as possible. Think about everything you use in your home from cleaning products to food to shampoo. Research the name of each chemical listed under the ingredients from one bottle in your home. Look up what those particular chemicals can do to your body.

26) Travel as often as you can! We enjoy giving our children travel experience, not buying stuff that they won’t play with or use in 6 months.

27) Donate, sell or give away items you are no longer using. 

28) Help people as often as you can. From donating your time to a food pantry to buying the person’s groceries at the check out line whose card was declined. Just help others, as often as you can.

29) Meal plan. I have meal planned since day one of our marriage. It saves so much time and money!

30) Take time to do something you’ve always wanted to do. Run a 5k, get a massage, treat yourself to a coffee. Just do something for you.

31) Do not be in debt. Pay off your home. Pay off that car payment. Do not carry credit card debt.

32) Buy out of season for clothing. You can save so much money! I have bought jackets, shoes and clothing for our family when we need items, out of season and save up to 90%.

33) Don’t buy bottled water. Buy a water filtration system for about $300. You will save money and it’s healthier drinking water. Plus, no littering our planet with plastics and your not exposed to the plastic by drinking the water from a plastic bottle.

34) Learn how to fix things yourself. From that leaky toilet to a screen door that won’t shut. You can save so much money by doing things yourself.

35) Have at least 6 months of savings for emergency only.

36) Grow a garden. Try to be as sustainable as possible. Herbs, veggies, fruit trees and shrubs. 

37) Have a budget and stick to it.

38) Practice boundries when needed.

39) Own your own story. It can be hard, but it is better than running from it, your whole life!

40) Have courage. Even when it is hard.

THE BILTMORE AT CHRISTMAS

THE BILTMORE AT CHRISTMAS

We all dream of that perfect holiday season. The one filled with family togetherness, Christmas trees with lights, homemade hot cocoa and Christmas movies. Often times, the reality of the Christmas holidays can bring on endless busyness. I believe that in order to fully appreciate the holidays, taking a family Christmas vacation can really help set our sights, in perspective of a truly beautiful family holiday. This helps us to step away from the day-to-day and set it in another light.

269E25DC-43CB-491B-AB95-E611A221459D

 

Christmas at the Biltmore

The weekend after my fourthieth birthday, we packed the car and had our eyes set for the stunning Asheville, North Carolina, the backdrop of George Vanderbilt’s famous estate.

FC2A858B-6D59-46E0-806D-90466A993F27

This is the Biltmore’s 125 year of welcoming guests into the estate. The Biltmore begins decorating in November with more than 60 Christmas trees, 13,000 ornaments, thousands of lights, beautiful poinsettias and ribbons all adorn the majestic estate.

FEACC401-D5BA-4702-BDBE-8F051F9A07CE

On the front lawn of the Biltmore House, a breathtaking, 55-foot-tall Norway spruce with 45,000 plus lights and is lit for the candlelight evenings.

3893F37D-DFFD-4EE1-B9C9-78A6650B8D02

In the Banquet Hall of the Biltmore House, a 35-foot Fraser fir Christmas tree is brought in by 50 helpers! It is even replaced mid holiday season to ensure a fresh tree. The replacement tree arrives to the house by 4 AM and decorated by the time the first guests arrive by 9 AM. The tree is decorated with 500 ornament, 500 lights and 500 packages, as George Vanderbilt decorated the tree.

FE3E6E81-18B3-418D-BAF0-B96E005B18E2

History of Christmas at the Biltmore

George Vanderbilt and his wife, Edith along with their daughter, Cornelia, spent many Christmases together in the Biltmore House, creating many traditions that continue today. George Vanderbilt’s descendant s, the Cecil family, now the estate’s owners and caretakers, host the annual employee holiday party, just like the Vanderbilt’s did. The Vanderbilt’s also made sure that each employee’s child had a Christmas gift and the Cecil family continues this tradition today. Records even show that Edith Vanderbilt kept notes on what gift each child received every year to avoid repeating gift in the years to follow. The lists still exist, as well as receipts from FAO Schwartz detailing some of the toys and games she purchased. 

6F54AC3D-0129-4145-9563-43178212710F

The Biltmore at Christmas

Throughout the house and other buildings on the estate, you will find 55 plus decorated Christmas trees, each created by Biltmore designers, all with different themes each year.

B749425A-3506-4E83-80AD-E90B753F25AB

Every detail of the estate is covered in Christmas cheer and almost every room in the home has it’s own Christmas tree.

97D097F3-CB33-4B09-9EBC-6637B9F4E262

Not only is the home absolutely stunning with Christmas decor, the exquisite details of the estate will wow just about anyone!

7CDAE7F1-2594-4015-854E-48E8FEDD4464

From the medieval tapestries, some dating back to the 1500’s, the detailed wood prints, exquisite paintings, 70-foot ceilings to the 10,000 rare volume priceless library!

9A63881B-AA5B-4943-A607-AD990251ED78

Estate Shops: Carriage House Shop

After touring the Biltmore House, we walked over to the Carriage House to find our keepsake ornament of the trip. We found many beautiful ornaments such as handpainted glass, wood and porcelain.  We also picked up a book about the Biltmore and I have enjoyed reading the history of the Vanderbilts.

80A31292-D3F2-4F52-BF4A-8BDDF33FB707

Estate Shops: Toymaker’s

My youngest daughter was jumping at the chance to head to the Toymaker’s toy shop! She chose a stuffed Cedric dog, which was the family dog of the Vanderbilts! I also picked up a couple pencils and a pen as souvineers.

DE744476-B72F-465C-83DB-15B77079FB86

Estate Shops: Confectionery

Why not induldge yourself with an array of treats at the Confectionery candy shop!

730CD5D9-7A8B-434B-924F-A9941EE86EB2

Our family chose several chocolate treats and they were worth waiting in line! From cookies to truffles, our family enjoyed grabbing a few of these before heading home!

989195D8-C079-4B04-BEBF-FBF2A9A1A369

 

TIPS FOR VISITING THE BILTMORE

I did not wear tennis shoes but I would definitely recommend it! Purchase your tickets before you go! Purchase an audio for your visit. Allow time to get park and ride the bus to the estate.

48CB8605-6CD7-41BA-8543-D1ED2A100387

FINAL THOUGHTS

The Biltmore is a stunning place! We loved Asheville and will definitely be back! We may even make it a yearly tradition!  

Love, Shae 

79596253-29D4-4E04-86D6-5BADAD84564F

Styling a Full Length Mirror with Greenery and Florals

It’s always fun when I challenge myself with Thrift Store Challenge. The rules are that I  have to find an item from a thrift store, garage sale, estate sale, flea market or heck, even from the side of the road and share how I styled it in our homes!

E9E07DB5-4739-436E-9480-1AEF301DC3D5

One of my favorite ways to fill a wall or add extra light to a space is through the use of mirrors as decoration! I love hunting for mirrors when I go browsing estate sales or on our local trade sites, but this time, I found a larger scale Kirklands mirror on Facebook Marketplace for $40. This mirror retails for $100 at Kirklands! Score!

I knew I wanted to place the mirror on my staircase landing, plus I decided to style my mirror with greenery and florals! I had the greenery on hand but purchase the Vintage Peonies from Amazon.



 For the greenery, I used Frosted Eucalyptus Garland  from Hobby Lobby.  They are only $10 when on sale for 50% off! I used two of these.

 I also used  Eucalyptus Leaf Garland from Hobby Lobby.  They are also only $10 each when they are on sale. I used two of each of these.  I took one of each of the Frosted Eucalyptus Garland and one of the Eucalyptus Leaf Garland and intertwined those, then placed over the top of my mirror. I tucked a few pieces of the Frosted Eucalyptus Garland behind my mirror to help secure it. Then I used one thin nail to hammer into the wall.  Next, I added the second set of combined Frosted Eucalyptus and the Eucalyptus Leaf Garland. I also tucked pieces of the Frosted Eucalyptus behind the mirror and I also sort of “hooked” on the second eucalyptus to the first eucalyptus pieces. You can also use mini command hooks to hook onto the mirror.


Next I grabbed my Vintage Peonies that I purchased from Amazon. I took apart all the Vintage Peonies and decided where I wanted to place them. I wanted to have several in the left hand corner as my focal point of the floral and greenery. I decided the best way to attach the flowers would be to add a tiny dab of hot glue to each flower and press in place until dry.


I have a video tutorial over on my IG.  Check it out to see how it all came together! I hope y’all have enjoyed this tutorial!

❤️-Shae

Easy DIY Valentine Pillow

Easy DIY Valentine Pillow

0E4E9784-010B-428F-9635-8AE481C48BFFToday is our monthly blog hop, challenging us to find an item from a thrift shop, estate sale, garage sale, rummage sale, yard sale, antique shop, Craigslist or FB Marketplace. Hosted by Tara from  Stilettos And Shiplap  and Emily from Le Cultivateur. Several months ago, I found 8 down pillow inserts on Facebook Marketplace for $10 and they all came from Pottery Barn! Retails for $18.00 each! Plus, they were machine wash and dry!

76909E49-8B81-4B4F-935F-B1332459F9DE

I think that pillows are the stuffed animals for adult women! HA!

2CE344A1-E504-4C1E-9473-157350398A51A couple of months ago, I decided to make new pillows for our sectional sofa. The pillows that came with the couch were just not really my style. I definitely needed something more neutral. I immediately knew that canvas painter’s drop cloths would be the fabric that would be super affordable and durable with a large family! I already had a drop cloth on hand from Lowes that was around $12 from that project, so I decided to use it for this project. When I made the new pillows for the couch, I knew I could always accent those pillows with a few seasonal pillows.

516D1508-0C39-414E-B8A2-4A8D2774DF49

I knew for my Valentine’s decor this year, that I wanted to make a few neutral decor pieces for my home. Painter’s canvas drop cloths is seriously my best friend. They are machine washable and dryer safe! I start off by washing my drop cloths to soften them up a bit. For the Valentine’s pillow, I just made a template for the xo and cut it out of paper. I then placed the paper template on top of the canvas drop cloth and traced around each letter with a pencil. Next step was to just cut out the x and the o.

330C9E7A-B95B-498C-8015-B3DC311FD107

For the pillow cover, I decided to do a invisible zipper but you could always do an envelope closure, as well. I basically used a pillow cover from the sofa pillows, as my pattern.

0958CB47-5626-4A1E-9C52-8CA286976AB2

My pillow inserts were 18 inch squares so I decided to make 20 inch square pillow covers. Cut two of the same size square’s for your pillow cover. I basically layed my “pattern” onto the drop cloth and cut twice.

B3204F84-7ADD-4BD0-85C0-7AAB5AB9D4CE

Pin the x and o onto one of your pillow covers.

C245791D-2C0C-42B4-9722-B0772838FBD6

Then sew the x and o onto the pillow cover. If your doing a zipper closure, with right sides together, sew in your invisible zipper.

ED4DE3AE-BAC4-44D3-95D9-76A1543DEA0E

Leave enough of your zipper unzipped to place your hand through to turn the pillow right side out, after you’ve sewn around all the edges. Next, sew all of your edges or seams. I left 1/4 allowance for seams.

DDD1E19B-DE3E-438D-8781-294442A8E02F

Next, turn your pillow, right side out, by placing your hand through the zipper. Place your pillow insert into your pillow cover and your done! Pretty simple!

A391E54B-84B9-48C8-B30E-0E842D4DB0BF

I hope you find our Thrift Store Hop inspirational! Please hop on over to the other ladies and see what they’ve found this month for our Thrift Store Challenge!

Love, Shae

4CA876C4-C842-47D8-853F-80351ED7D648

Thrifted Treasure ~ January

6434E336-B4C1-4496-8D2F-4DA5C8B301F0

https://throughavintagedoor.com/thrift-store-find-January/

D2080C5E-FBBC-46E3-9C65-484630C622A3

Antique Hutch Makeover – January Thrift Store Challenge

80D070CB-F7AE-49C3-954A-1AFE7C02FBD5

https://barnhousemess.wordpress.com/2020/01/19/thrift-store-challenge-vintage-chest

F91407EB-9729-4C6D-BB5A-13141F735510

https://wordpress.com/post/clochesandlavender.com/12411

E5AA02AC-7B83-44EF-B04A-1EED64B3553E

Thrift Store Challenge – January, Pub Table Makeover

75878B40-1AD3-413F-96F7-46FBFCA6C7B9

Vintage Desk Makeover – Painted Furniture

Inspiration for a Winter Home

Inspiration for a Winter Home

Today I was invited by my friend Terrie , for a January Challenge on giving our readers inspiration for warming up your home for winter. Challenge accepted! Styling my home for winter has definitely been a first for me, but I am enjoying how much warmer, my home feels!4C95C543-D3C9-41D4-94A7-B397BE404746.png

I started by adding several small flocked trees that I purchased from Target this year. I believe the smaller ones were only $3 and the larger ones were $5.  I love antique crocks and decided to add the flocked trees to my vintage crocks. Most of my crocks are from both of my grandmother’s homes. I also decided to keep out several different varieties of greenery, along with my candles. I added flocked greenery and lambs ear to my grapevine wreath that is hanging on my antique door. The door was  found on facebook marketplace for $5 and originally painted brown. I stripped all the paint with Citristrip and was left with an antique milk paint base. I originally had the door in our master bedroom in the corner, but with January here, I was ready to start rearranging!

E017BC8A-D7A7-4B3D-A761-6D3BB2CF74FA

For the mantel, I wanted to leave my mirror and a couple different types of garland, along with a couple flocked trees. The mirror was purchased for $1 at a rummage sale and you can see how I transformed it, Here . I made all of my pillows from canvas drop cloths. I plan to have a blog out on how to make them, this month. My vintage ski “wreath” is another afternoon diy! Fun and budget friendly! Our family pup wanted to get cozy for this picture!

22A7128D-5C1F-4251-A346-E81CFC0F0E52

Another view of our living room, if you just want to keep it simple, just add greenery, flocked trees and throw pillows. I often find myself craving simplicity this time of year as well.

CC16BC98-2C55-4988-92D6-8379609B9936.jpeg

Thank you for joining us for our January Challenge! I hope you take the time to visit the other ladies and see how they have made their home feel cozy for winter!

❤️-Shae

EDD6E56F-F4B2-4F27-800A-52145B52FDCD.jpeg

https://decorateandmorewithtip.com/?p=24989&preview=true

75477FF7-9D65-4307-A8E9-86E6B70D7AAF.png

https://olympicnest.com/blog/5-frugal-and-quick-winter-decor-ideas-cozy-diy-winter-decor
D373D391-633C-45CC-ACDF-E1558EEDE1C8

http://www.patinaandpaint.com/diy-challenge

2E891E5B-8404-411B-95C0-FFFB44530B1C

http://www.thetaborhood.com/blog/warm-your-home-up-this-winter

EE6117D7-4770-4BA8-97E0-441255CCC87F.png

https://cdscountryliving.com/5-ways-to-warm-cozy-up-your-home-for-winter/

A3A7D5E8-B394-4EF7-BE31-D8D4BB4548CB.png

https://clochesandlavender.com/

33D4AFFF-C027-4889-9C8B-4492721ABF8D.jpeg

https://www.blessingsbyme.com/?p=4678

411F2DA2-53F6-43E5-ABDF-EAC52156484D

https://shadyoakandsassafras.com/?p=915

BC22AFC9-EDD1-4929-9487-2AA90B9CD6D0.jpeg

https://jessicabsimmons.com/

E06CFB48-CFA9-417C-821B-934345A22A7E.jpeg

Painting Kitchen Cabinets

Painting Kitchen Cabinets

If you have noticed the cost of all new kitchen cabinets, renovating your kitchen can be one of the most expensive projects when renovating your home. When deciding to turn our kitchen into our dream, we knew we would be on a budget. I did not have a set budget in mind, but let’s just say my budget goes a little something like this…as cheap as possible. You can see the full kitchen renovation blog Here . I knew I wanted to keep the cabinets because they were made of real wood. I chose white kitchen cabinets with light distressing. I also wanted to paint the inside of my cabinets as well. When we moved into our home, 5 years ago, the cabinets were painted a latex white on the outside but not painted on the inside. Below is the before photo of our kitchen, the day we purchased our home!

9935CE6D-C66B-4EE8-ACC2-4EAFC7D6BA96

If you have followed along with me for awhile, you can see throughout my blog, my love for chalk paint. As durable and hardy that chalk paint is, I knew it would be a great choice for kitchen cabinets.

First things first, we removed all of our items from the inside of the cabinets.

9014877D-B5AF-482D-A42F-A0F8DD8119A7

Next, we began removing all hardware, doors and drawers.

247ABCF1-A66A-41E3-A80F-C8FC2B59230E

I gave all of the cabinets a good wipe down with soap and water. Next, I mixed up my homemade chalk paint recipe. I always use Sherwin Williams brand paint. You can find that recipe here .  I painted the inside of all the cabinets with one coat then lightly sanded and wiped with a damp cloth.

4EDE87E8-557B-46E6-9CE2-DEE7E52BD17E

I repeated these steps until I had three coats of paint on the inside of all the cabinets.

F849200E-9CDD-4F3B-B3A6-93BF709ABCA6

The next item of agenda was to paint the outside of all of the cabinets with two coats of paint, with light sanding in between and a wipe down with a dampened cloth.

I only needed two coats of paint on the outside of the cabinets because my cabinets were already painted white before I began painting.

2D2F7440-DB37-4D06-8C71-4EEA66E74E66

Next we painted the cabinet doors and drawers. We set up an assembly line in our garage. We used 2×4’s to lay the doors on to help make sure we didn’t get drips.

3F550F75-FDF6-407E-8AA3-B392089E2621

If you do come back and found that you’ve gotten a few drips, you can sand it down and paint over that spot. It’s not a big deal but does make a little more work for you. After the first side of the cabinet doors were painted with two coats of paint, light sanding in between and wiped down, I waited 24 hours before flipping over the the second side of the cabinet doors. The second side received the same treatment as the first side.

C4BF814C-7D05-4A12-A0D8-08D30F42777C

After finishing the cabinet doors, we moved on to the cabinet drawers. The inside of the drawers had never been painted, so they received three coats with light sanding in between and a good wipe down, after each coat. Next, we moved on to the outside of the cabinet drawers.

EA4A0D8C-1E85-45EF-882D-76F7BC1010FD

They received two coats of paint with light sanding and a wipe down in between coats.

At this point, I felt like I could finally begin to see the light 🙌🏼 It took us about two weeks for myself, the hubs and our two adult daughters,  to all work on the cabinets! Much longer than I anticipated!

974BD376-C2CB-400A-9614-7F94EA1F448B

Here came the fun part! I wanted to go ahead and place all of the cabinet doors and drawers back on, so I could precisely decide where I wanted to distress. I used my orbital sander to lightly sand on the inside of the cabinets. Then I used 120 grit to sand all the edges of the cabinet doors and drawers, where it would naturally wear. I don’t like super heavy distressing but I would say this is light to medium distressing.

Before (The day we purchased our home.)

9935CE6D-C66B-4EE8-ACC2-4EAFC7D6BA96

After (Current view with Christmas decor.)

E890B69C-D6F4-4853-BA5E-A3AC92ABE407

We are absolutely loving how our cabinets and entire kitchen has turned out!! We absolutely get so much JOY from our home DIY renovations. I hope you have enjoyed reading and we hope to inspire you!

❤️-Shae

 

Homemade Apple Pie

Homemade Apple Pie

Today is our blog hop for our monthly Clearance Challenge. The rules are it has to be more than 50% from a store of our choice & show how we can use the piece in our home. As I was browsing Home Goods for fall pillows a couple weeks ago, I like to start off in the clearance section because I am constantly looking for Rae Dunn pieces; when low and behold, I found a Rae Dunn pie dish!! I turned it over to see the cost and it was only $14.99! Score! It was 65% off!

6F12F5ED-CC53-487C-8A25-5CFB91095378

One of my favorite fall traditions to do with my daughters is to make homemade apple pie. This is something I started with my oldest when she was really small and as soon as the weather turns chilly, we look forward to pie making day!

98EA3AF2-2991-41F6-BF55-69FA9A9D1132

When I make apple pie, I like to use a couple different variety of apples. This year we used Gala & Granny Smith.

My oldest daughter and number 3 daughter peeled, sliced & cored the apples. They also mixed all of the filling as well! We have a handy apple peeler from The Pampered Chef that makes it super simple to get all your apples ready in basically one swipe!

5C46CBBE-E4AF-4DE5-B605-15D484B59EEB

My number 2 daughter and number 4 daughter helped me with mixing the pie crusts & rolling them out!

198BF208-8514-4F79-BC46-7E6A0403F53D

We made a total of 4 pies plus homemade apple cider to sip on while me baked our pies!

CA703B9B-5446-4C4F-8BC5-EADEFB944C30

Now to choose how to decorate the top! Most of the time we do the lattice technique but the past couple of years we have been using a Pie Crust Cutter Set from Williams Sonoma.

Apple Pie

7 medium apples (Granny Smith and Gala), peeled, cored & sliced, zest of one lemon, 2 tsp of cinnamon, 1/8 tsp ground cloves, 1/2 c sugar & 1/2 c brown sugar. In large bowl, toss apples with all ingredients and set aside.

Crust

I use William Sonoma’s Basic Pie Crust recipe. The only thing I do different is add 2 more tbsp. of sugar.

Add your crust to your pie pan and poke holes in the crust with a fork. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 min. Take out and add your pie filling along with how you chose to decorate your top of your pie.

9F7C67DE-B403-4B1E-8C3E-24B8E6B53EB6

I will bake an additional 10-15 min but as soon as the top begins to brown, I add a tent shaped piece of foil to the top of the pie so it doesn’t brown to quickly. Now, try to be patient as you smell this delicious aroma of apple pie, fill your home! It is so good y’all! Do you have any baking traditions in your family?

814A4B4A-E997-4BFC-B7D7-104ACE365B51

Don’t forget to check out my friends on our blog hop to see what they have found on clearance and styled to perfection in their homes!

Love~Shae

F2AF8839-AB1D-47A5-ABF9-91F4B92762E8

Top Shelf Clearance Challenge ~ October

BD24C3B3-B34F-42EB-8E7E-A31990AE9E48

https://stilettosandshiplap.com/clearance-challenge:-it’s-amore/3784/

8355D5F9-9EE9-4058-BF13-066DCDCDCFCA

https://barnhousemess.wordpress.com/2019/10/13/clearance-store-challenge

B43F213F-9C85-48E8-8C43-B47F8506F34E

Clearance Challenge – October 2019

1607C57B-674C-4559-95A9-54B59477E684

 

 

Halloween Themed Mantel – October Clearance Challenge

Thanksgiving Tablescape

Thanksgiving Tablescape

Today I am joined by several of my friends, that happen to be bloggers as well, to share our Thanksgiving Tablescape’s with y’all! I would also like to thank our host Terrie, from Decorate & More with Tip. Rules: To decorate our table for Thanksgiving and one item needed to be a DIY! As I always say, challenge accepted!

I have had this idea in my head to make my own charges from a tree log, except I had to find a log that would be large enough for chargers. This moment unexpectedly presented itself when we had a storm pass through in our neighborhood, back in August. We have a 75 plus year old willow oak tree in our front yard. The wind had whipped up quite intensely and I actually thought the tree was falling on top of our house, but two of the larger limbs broke off from the tree and fell to the ground.

5AFDAF7F-23AA-4391-8996-D9D58A07F1DC

After the storm was over, one of my first thoughts was that we could make several chargers from one of the limbs.

C9FCA79B-2B1B-4A14-AA84-800DF33E1317

The very next day, the first item on my husband’s agenda, without us even talking about it, was cutting eight chargers for our dining room table! My husband used his chainsaw to cut the chargers right off the fallen limb and voila, we had chargers!

0040CCF1-DAA1-4686-8A8A-37BAFDC40E3E

This is from the top of our front porch. The limbs completely knocked down the power lines in the road as well. We also had a small amount of damage.

5008DCCD-0763-4EE0-8694-6A29CCAB073D

I have been letting the wood dry out in my basement before sealing. Wood usually needs to dry out for 3-4 months. I am planning to seal each charger with a clear coat to protect the wood for years to come!

DCA61F3D-3528-4E2E-BA78-C19F54753D58

For the items on my Thanksgiving Tablescape, I began each place setting with the chargers that we made, along with a Pioneer Woman White Linen Salad Plate and a Pottery Barn Leaf Harvest Salad Plate. Pottery Barn is not carrying the Leaf Plates any longer, but I did find them here . I was able to find my Pottery Barn plates at a church rummage sale for $1.50 each and they were brand new! The crystal glasses were handed down to me from my Mother. I also used real cinderella pumpkins and faux pumpkins from Hobby Lobby and Trader Joe’s . The orange, yellow & green sprays are also from Hobby Lobby. I purchased four that I cut up and have used throughout my home for this year’s fall décor. I love the muted tones in the birch sprays! I also grabbed several brown acorn & berry picks from Hobby Lobby. I have used those all over my home as well in my fall décor. The brass candlesticks are from my fav local antique shop and local thrift store! I paid $2-$6 for each one. Farmhouse table, light fixture, wood cutting boards, curtains and Pumpkin Patch sign are all made by my husband and I.

1FB1307D-0FA8-4DED-B5E4-ECB92DC5563D

I hope y’all have enjoyed this easy diy and budget friendly Thanksgiving Tablescape! It does not need to cost an arm and a leg to decorate your home beautifully! Please stop by and visit each of my friend’s to see their Thanksgiving Tablescape!

Love~Shae

442D9847-FDCE-476C-865C-AD630C5ACD26

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to ent

Exploring Egmont Key in Florida: Wildlife and History

Exploring Egmont Key in Florida: Wildlife and History

In June of this year, we had the pleasure of visiting Egmont Key, located at the mouth of Tampa Bay, Florida. It lies southwest of Fort De Soto and can only be reached by boat or ferry. The Egmont Key Lighthouse and the ruins of Fort Dade, a Spanish-American War era fort, are also located on Egmont Key. Egmont Key extends along the Tampa Port Shipping Channel. The nearest city is St. Petersburg, Florida. We took the Tampa Bay Ferry from Fort De Soto to Egmont Key and on the way over to the island, I couldn’t help but notice the Caribbean-like blue green waters of Tampa Bay.

8E9F272B-B14A-43BB-A941-83188351526E

When we had almost arrived to the island, we had the pleasure of seeing three manatees!! This was the first time our family had ever been this up close to manatees before and I am almost at a loss of words by how amazing they were!

0BD6E4E7-B771-40FD-AA43-4F7A46E4F9B7

Two of the manatees were kissing and they were such gentle animals!

AF7C8FD8-FF1B-4C6F-8021-F80B04D565A1

Arriving on Egmont Key!

17F96678-3909-4CA4-91A9-3914D14DAFF3

Once we arrived on the island, we walked along the pathways lined with palm trees and flowers. The flowers and palm trees were so beautiful!

989F2DDA-2A35-4F22-8C26-CB0FDA58A061

One of the first sight’s to see is the lighthouse!

7B0F3A41-2233-46A9-98C1-5B5A10C3DF64

We continued walking along the pathway to the beach and decided to go exploring for sea shells! We walked along the beach and found all different types of sea shells.

B6813C2F-6D67-4394-80B5-40BD2853C17F

After shell searching, we worked up an appetite for lunch! We ate our lunch on the beach and decided to explore the forts on the island from the Spanish-American War.

9B8DB55C-7DF7-4595-9A6D-85AA99205B56

The picture below is Battery McIntosh, one of five gun batteries on Fort Dade.

1A961E08-2BAC-43FB-BAF2-38D8AFA18F43

Fort Dade was built on the island in 1898 during the Spanish-American War and remained active until 1923.

4916B2C2-028D-4738-ACB6-C28BF2064151

During this time, there was about 300 people living on the island with a small hospital, bakery, movie theater, bowling alley and tennis courts. While exploring the island, you will come across several of the remnants. The picture below is remnants of Fire Command Control Tower.

A5831B1D-A592-4875-9FED-D68F6B29959E

We stumbled upon several gopher tortoises!

5775BA5A-C45A-4591-A344-422A04D9F706

We even got to feed one! Be careful though, they think brightly colored nail polish is food!

8FCF5E33-F3E5-4B7F-BA08-EC8B29E2910D

Our family enjoyed seeing the lighthouse that was built in 1858, while being maintained by the Coast Guard for ships and boats.

F099EED4-D6EA-4E0C-8072-36F2767411A8

Picture below is of my husband and I!

F944EA9C-0D69-4A57-9889-721A374D89F2

When we got back to the other side of the island, we headed straight to the water to cool off! It is very hot and humid, so please make sure to bring lots of water!

B4F88190-6A8A-4A62-BE38-0C89875BD97D

On the ferry ride back to Fort De Soto, we saw dolphins!

FD63E82C-3792-4A54-BC46-7F11D6E9B7C0

The dolphins were stealing all the fisherman’s bait fish off of their poles!

7AA9EF7F-9D35-4DD7-916D-2C033075A731

Definitely a unique island to visit and explore!

Tips from our family:

*Pack food and plenty of water

*Bring sunscreen

*There are no restrooms on the island, so be prepared.

*Wear clothing and shoes that you don’t mind getting wet/sandy.

Absolutely a wonderful experience that we will treasure for a lifetime and it could possibly be one of my most favorite places to visit in the world!

Love~Shae

 

 

 

 

 

Some of Life’s Greatest Treasures

Some of Life’s Greatest Treasures

I think when a Grandparent gives you something they value, it is one of the most greatest treasures in life! The picture above is my husband’s Paw-Paw & Big Grandma. I believe they were dating in this pic, soon to be married! Aren’t they a stunning couple! I think back on the time that I knew Big Grandma (never met his Paw-Paw because he passed before we married) and I think she had a good life with lots of family surrounding her. That was one thing about her is that she loved her family and she loved helping anyone when they needed help!  Right around mine and my husband’s first anniversary, we had our first daughter and anytime Big Grandma came to visit, she would always bring diapers! She knew how expensive those things were and babies are expensive! It was like she just knew when we always needed something and that’s just how she was! I remember the first time she had a stroke and I really thought we would loose her. I was so scared that when I spoke with her on the phone, I started crying and told her how much I loved her. We had her for many more years before she passed. I will never forget telling her that we would be naming our 4th daughter after her….her eyes just sparkled and she said “Really?” I told her “Yes!” and boy was she proud! It wasn’t long after that, just two months, before she passed away. She never got to meet our little Jewell but I know she is looking down and smiling at our rainbow baby!

23FD3852-D021-48CE-963F-E45828783CB6

This antique milking stool was my husband’s Big Grandma’s.  He said she didn’t have many possessions as a child, but I wonder if this stool served as many purpose’s, in her childhood and as she grew up. I have explained in my last blog that we acquired a antique key from her home, when we were cleaning it out, as we were getting ready to renovate it. The stool was also an item that we picked out that day because Big Grandma wanted us to have it. Our oldest two daughter’s were small at the time so we decided the stool would make a great “time out” stool or we could use it to stand on, when we couldn’t reach things in the pantry! We’ve had it in our home for at least 15 years now and I love thinking back to that day, when we came home with all of our treasure’s from Big G’s house.

Here’s a little throw back pic of our two youngest daughter’s on their first trip to Disney World!

27F691F3-4672-47CF-B790-1404CE14FDF0

Please check out my blogging friends to see what they have found on their thrift store, estate sale, yard sale or family heirloom searches!

Love~Shae

2DBE7694-9826-4B57-835F-A9502E253447

https://decorateandmorewithtip.com/my-thrift-store-louver-door/

ECFA6F44-A918-47F6-947F-8ED25A1D9BCB

Thrifted Treasure ~ July

6F085B2F-DC0D-4551-8C14-8FC252FB30CE

https://throughavintagedoor.com/2019:07/10/July-thrift-store-find/

FEE4FFB5-C804-480F-AFB5-302F8629B5D5

https://decorateandmorewithtip.com/my-thrift-store-louver-door/

13E9C848-8796-4AA9-8F64-9202663619BF

Vintage Washboard – July Thrift Challenge