Saturday, July 28, 2012

Saturday Afternoon ~ Junking

This post is going to be VERY random.
I can not sleep because I am completely obsessed passionate about all the ideas
that are going through my head for our new house.

We are really making progress on our renovation.
I need to keep posting more updates so please stay tuned.
To be totally honest....sometimes I focus to much on the end result.
The Design Plan....of course.
(Yes, I get too involved in the way its going to look in the end.)

My husband does all the dirty work....poor guy.
He reminds me daily that it is not time to choose the finishes yet.
We have a bit more work to do....
To help clear my head I thought I would share my Saturday afternoon with you.

This afternoon somewhere between being the cleaning lady,
the errand runner & the wife of a renovator I was able to squeeze in just a bit of "me time".
On my way to the grocery store I stopped by one of my favorite sale barns.
The Coal Valley Sale Barn
(Okay, so it may not have been a direct route....I may have had to go into another state:)
Don't judge....we live on the Iowa/Illinois border, so going into another state wasn't that crazy!

{For my Friend Cathy}
Cathy ~ If you are reading this post I'm sorry I didn't call when I was in your neighborhood today!
She will not be pleased that I didn't call her to meet me at the sale barn.
Promise ~ I really was hurrying through.

I was actually just checking to see if there were any great deals on distressed furniture pieces.
I like to stop by my favorite booths every few weeks to check out the new finds.
It has been far too long since my last trip to the sale barn.
I didn't really see what I was looking for, but of course I found some great rustic unique pieces.

How fabulous is this rustic old fishing net?
I LOVE it!
Our new home is in LeClaire, a historic little rivertown.
This could be really great hanging from the tall ceilings for a nod to the rivertown charm.

But....then again I don't know that I want the feel to be that rustic.
I want it to be relaxed modern cottage with a little classic element to.

We'll have to wait & see.
There are a few pieces that caught my eye today.
I have to think about it a little more.

Does anyone else do that?
Sometimes I have to go home & think through my design decisions.
I really want to make the right choices for our new home.
I don't want to buy on impulse.
Or settle just because it was in budget.
I want to work really hard to achieve the right look while staying in budget.

Sorry for this completely random post!
Thanks for being my sounding board.

Happy Weekend!


Friday, July 27, 2012

Our Renovation ~ Excavating

The renovation pushes on...
Back in May the Excavation Crew took over.
Luckily for us, we happen to know them pretty well.
Travis' Uncle owns an excavation company & they were our obvious choice.
Travis' Uncle, his Dad & his cousin were at our house bright & early on a Friday in May.
I even took off work a bit early that day just to watch.
It was really pretty exiciting.
I have NEVER seen so much dirt.
For those of you who may not know, we are renovating a home originally built in the 1880's.
In our hometown of historic LeClaire, Iowa we are building our dream.
Don't worry....
We have a vision.
We removed the old additions that were structurally not sound & now we are on to the dirt work.
This is on the back of the house.
We have to remove the ground in order to pour the foundation footings
for the new addition that is going on the back of the hosue and crawl space below.
As you can see we have some foundation issues that need to be addressed to.

A view from the back yard.
We have a little shady nook behind our garage that is the perfect perch to watch the progress.

Travis & his Dad
I just love this photo:)
It's really very special watching a father & son get to work side by side on a project like this.
They are good ol farm boys who are made for this kind of thing.
It's extra special because my father in-law is part of the excavating crew & Travis is our builder.

There are days in renovation that remind you exactly why you choose to do this in the first place.
This was definitely one of those days.

End of Excavating Day 1
Remember my favorite little perch.... it's slowly disappearing.

Day 2

Okay, so I have to admit I was in pure shock!
What had happened to my quiant & charming yard that drew me to this house originally???
It's gone!
Excavating turned out to be a little more than I bargained for.
I guess I just wasn't exactly prepared for how different the yard would be.
But, I can not help but be overwhelmed by the progress that has been made here in two days.
We will put our yard back together....eventually....

End of Excavating Day 2

Well, my shady nook has become a dirt pile.
Stay tuned...for the Foundation.


Simple Summer Centerpiece ~ Hydrangeas

Simple Summer Centerpiece
I put together this centerpiece a few weeks ago at my Mom's for a small get together.
I think blue Hydrangea's are the perfect nod to the relaxing days of Summer.
Read more about our backyard party here.
I used grocery store flowers.
The beautiful bouquet of Nikko Blue Hydrangeas was only $21.

Having guests over this weekend?
Why not add a small special touch to your dining table or entryway.

Have a great day!


Saturday, July 21, 2012

Tour a Chic California Beach House ~ Modern Cottage Inspiration

The perfect beach getaway.
I had to share this tour.
It is stunning!

This home had so many of the details & styles I absolutely adore.
I only hope our new home will have half of the style that this home has.

What a quaint cottage kitchen.

This living space is fantastic.

The bathroom....

It doesn't stop outdoors...

Isn't this home absolutely perfect???
I can hardly stand it...
I LOVE it!

Pin Away...

All Images fromt this post via House Beautiful.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Outdoor Entertaining ~ Backyard Party

As I shared earlier this month I have been helping my Mom plan a small party for her bunco group.
For any of you who don't know, party planning is one of the small details we take great pride in.
We certainly do know how to throw a good time, while making your guests feel welcome & invited.
I think we enjoy planning the party almost as much as
 seeing it through to the final goodbye of the last guest.

This party turned out to be a great success!
The ladies enjoyed a great evening of fun, food & cocktails.

When we originally started to plan the party I thought it would be a great idea to have it outdoors.
This would accomodate the group of 12-14 women more comfortably than being indoors.
Little did we know that Iowa would have one of the hottest Summer's on record,
nor did we know that we were in for a heat wave for the entire two weeks prior to the party.
Thank goodness we had a reprieve on the evening of the ninth & the weather cooperated.

We rented this long table & chairs for the main table.
Originally the plan was the table would be in the yard underneath the big Maple tree.
Well, there goes that darn Mother Nature again.
An hour before the party she changed our plans.
We had a huge down pour that lasted about 30 minutes.
So, we scrambled bringing the decor & bar indoors & out of the rain.
Thank goodness we saved the table cloths!

Then what do you know, 15 minutes before the party sunshine & clear blue skys again!
Back outside we went quickly before anyone was the wiser.
Outdoor Bar Area

Galvanized buckets served as chillers.
Filled with ice wine & bottled beer our guests could help themselves.
Don't be afraid to use your glass stemware outdoors.
It's a nice elegant touch added to a casual outdoor setting.
Perfect for outdoor evening entertaining.

We set up a couple different seating zones for guests to mingle throughout the yard.
Below is a bench near the pond.

Our menu was fairly light & refreshing.
Broccoli Salad, Greek Pasta Salad, Bruschetta, Fresh Strawberries,
& for dessert your choice of decadent carrot cake or a slice of sweet lemon cake.
The cake's came from a local bakery all the other food we made the afternoon of the party.
I actually decided to help out with preparing the food, refreshments, serving & clean up.
It made it much easier for my Mom to host & enjoy her guests for the evening.

Broccoli Salad with an Italian Vinaigrette

I absolutely loved helping my Mom plan this party.
It was so much fun.
Hmmm I could even see myself as a bit of a party planner.

Do you like to host parties?
What about planning?  I would love to hear your stories.


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