what I do

what I do

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Ikea temptations

I took my mom to Ikea today (our third trip in the last week or so) to finalize a couple of cabinets we are using to create some extra storage and a worktop where we are removing her existing washer and dryer. 

I go to Ikea a lot by myself and I know all the shortcuts to bypass having to go through all the different departments and I tend to walk fast and get out as fast as possible. My mom likes to walk slow and look at everything. Which I realized today is not such a bad thing.

While we were walking by one of their bedroom displays I noticed a couple of pillows that I had never noticed before but when I went to find them they were not for sale. It turns out they were just selling the fabric. 

Have you looked at their fabrics? Honestly, I have always just walked past. 

The fabric has a nice weight to it and for the price I couldn't resist. 

Algort | $6.99 / yard

Tradklover | $7.99 / yard

I can see this as curtains in a child's room. 

I also saw some pretty cute rugs ... 

Unfortunately I had to resist those.

But on the way to check-out I grabbed a couple of dish towels ($2.99 for 2). 

Monday, July 29, 2013

Would you put a washer and dryer in your walk-in closet?

Yeah, it's one of those Mondays. I'm starting a small remodeling project at my mom's house today and my mind is completely filled up with that. We are moving her washer and dryer (a new stackable unit) into her kitchen and turning the hallway area where her existing washer and dryer is into a storage | work table. Have you ever thought of putting a washer and dryer in your walk in closet? I hadn't. But I came across these yesterday and the idea is interesting:

Yeah...no.  I can't wrap my head around this idea. Can you?
Happy Monday! 

Sunday, July 28, 2013

This mystery

Have you seen Brene´ Brown's Ted talk on The Power of Vulnerability? If you are not one of the over 10 million viewers, you can see it here. It is powerful and profound and very much worth listening to. But she also has a six minute video where she speaks about her faith journey. And for me, her words in this short video express much of how I feel (but so much better than I ever could).

In Thoughts in Solitude, Part 2, Chapter II, fifteen lines have become known as The Merton Prayer. I love the vulnerability and honesty in these words ...

The Merton Prayer

"Faith minus vulnerability and mystery is extremism. Don't call it faith if there's no vulnerability or uncertainty. If you've got all the answers, then don't call what you do faith."
- Brene´ Brown

There was a time when I thought that faith in God was simple. And easy. And I used to "know" so much. But then I got challenged by many things. Some of the things I experienced myself, but most of what challenged me was what I watched others experience. Pain. Death. Suffering. Unspeakable suffering. And it changed the way I thought about a lot of things. Especially God. I realized that I really didn't know as much as I thought I did. And it turned out that it is not a bad place to be. So now I cling to a different kind of faith; one of uncertainty and wonder. And hope (and oh so many questions I want to ask one day). 

For now, this is enough:

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Inspire someone

I had a little time this morning to catch up around my own house (laundry!), read a few blogs and get inspired with a few of the many great images and ideas that circulate ... 

Like this gorgeous Upper West Side Waterfront Apartment in Manhattan designed by Chango & Co.

Chango & Co | Photography: Jacob Snavely

Sometimes it can be intimidating overwhelming with all the creativity and talent that is out there but mostly it is great to see such talent and pure inspiration.

I found this free iPhone background today here. Thank you Rachel!

 It took me about two minutes to put it on my phone.  (It took me about twenty to get a kind-of-decent photo of it!). She also has a great Etsy Shop you might want to check out.

Okay ... I'm off to inspire and be inspired! Have a great day everyone!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Black is the new white

Amy D. Morris Interiors via

If you have read my blog for any length of time, you know that I love white. But I am also loving black and white. My walls in my kitchen have gone from a dark gray to a dark charcoal and honestly, I would love them even darker. (I can hear my husband groaning even at the thought of another paint change!!).

[Kitchen Walls | Kendall Charcoal HC-166 Benjamin Moore]

[fabric ready to go to the workroom]

 My office would be the perfect place to go pure black on the walls ... they used to be the darkest walls in our house, but now they look pale in comparison to the new darker walls.

A while back I painted our guest room walls "black" but they came out lighter than I had hoped they would be. Do you recognize the chest that is now in my kitchen?

 I had to laugh when I saw this ... I thought about my house - every room does have a touch of black. Maybe I count as the antique!!!

Tommy Smythe Design | Photo: Michael Graydon

I did a little research on what the best black paint was. It seems there are about as many black choices as there are whites. So I'm curious ... have you painted your walls black? Would you? Do you have a favorite black paint?

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Think happy thoughts

I am slightly obsessed with quotes and affirmations. I like to hang them all over my office to put good things in my head.  

They are good reminders, they encourage me and they help me to stay focused on what is true and lovely. 

"Most of all, let LOVE guide your life." Colossians 3:14

A few months ago I picked up a new one. (I posted about it here). Yesterday I had one of those coveted, lazy don't-get-out-of-your-pajamas-days and finally got around to hanging it. I put it right in front of my desk so it will be front and center while I am working. 

Non. Je ne regrette rien. It means "I have no regrets" (I purchased it here). It was inspired by the Edith Piaf song and is a simple statement that means life is to be lived without regrets and in full.
I love that.

And while I was in my office playing around and hanging the new print, I cleaned up my the magnetic strip that holds some of my other quotes ...

And printed out some new ones!

I think that positive words are one way to get rid of the ugly stuff that circulates in our heads. Usually that stuff is just made up of old thoughts and patterns that we don't want to let go of (or don't know how) and that aren't even true but affect the way we view and respond to different events in our life. 

In order to move forward and grow, we need to replace those old thoughts with new ones that are true and good. Repeating the new thoughts, whether they are positive affirmations or just reminders of what is true, is one way to get rid of that ugly stuff. 

You can find more inspirational quotes on my Pinterest page here.