Friday, December 20, 2013

for you last minute gift wrappers | FREE PRINTABLE

Download the free printable here and print on 8.5" x 11" white cardstock! Enjoy my friends!
This art is for personal use only. If you want to get one for a friend, that's cool, just please don't distribute my art without checking with me first. This art cannot be sold or altered without permission from the artist. xo, courtney

Thursday, December 19, 2013

my 6 FAVORITE winter drinks from Pinterest!

a / A mulled apple pear cider that warms you from the inside out. This recipe can be found on Honeysuckle Life and she suggests that you add a bit of rum or bourbon to really warm you up. I second that suggestion.

b / Anything that runs down the side of the mug and still looks delicious is a winner in my book. Seriously, that photo is like food porn. Sorry, had to go there. Find the delicious recipe at Back to Her Roots and you'll want to make this salted caramel mocha every day of your life.

c / Nothing sounds more like Christmas than a Gingerbread Hot Chocolate. Honestly, I can't really understand the translated version of the recipe on Cioccolato Gatto (original is in Polish I believe) but I figured it out ok. It's yummy and ginger-y and perfect for an afternoon snack after playing in the snow.

d / Four words for you Godiva. White. Chocolate. Liqueur. Yup. The easy-peasy yet delightful recipe can be found on Will Cook for Smiles. Share this with your favorite girlfriend on New Years Eve.

e / I'm one of those people that eats ice cream all year round, especially a great milkshake. Sometimes when I'm cozy in my house wrapping presents and rockin Mariah Carey's Christmas album, I like to make myself a milkshake. Frozen hot chocolate is perfect for winter. Get the recipe on Chef This Up.

f / The Organic Momma shared a cider recipe several years ago that I still use in the fall and winter. My skin seems to go a bit cray at the turn of the season, so I like to make this drink to help clear it up. Legitimately, I don't know if it actually helps but it is delicious.

What are your favorite winter drinks?

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

House Tour | Den

The den is the room we worked on the most - and it's still not completely finished. Our first "big" project on the house will be replacing the floor in this room. But this is the room that made us fall for this house head over heals. Just look at that ceiling!

I wanted to lighten the room up a lot, so we painted the wood paneling white. Each little groove was painted with a brush and the planks were rolled over three times to completely cover. The white walls really makes the ceiling stand out. It's the focal point of the room.

I added a crafting table in the corner as well as an old sorting box to hold our mail. Patterned curtains gives the room a playful vibe. The fireplace was stunning as is, so it just got dressed up for the holidays. Remember Erik, our shelf door? He's feeling at home in the den as well.

Eventually I would love to get a cozy loveseat to sit in front of the fireplace, but for now I'm happy with these lounge chairs. The open legs help the room feel large.

Lounge chairs - Ikea, here
Desk - Ikea, here
Desk chair - Ikea, here
Mail box - salvaged
Curtains - Ikea, here
Coffee table - salvaged
Bookcase - salvaged
Joy sign - Target, here

With the fireplace and the joy sign, this is my favorite room to decorate for Christmas. What room in your home is your favorite to decorate?

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

House Tour | Living Room

The room has great bones and architecture, so I didn't want to do much to mess that up. I painted the dark brown wall to match the rest of the walls then got to decorating.

Coffee table - salvaged and painted
End table - salvaged
Ruffle curtains - Here
Lamps - TJ Maxx
Entertainment center and sofa table - Ikea, here
Ladder - salvaged
Moss letters - I make and sell, here

You remember my hutch, right? I've blogged about him here and here. He's loving his new home in the living room, holding my Ball jar collection and a few wedding mementos. 

A collage wall of prints is in the works but until I figure out exactly how I want them laid out on the wall, I'm using pieces of washi tape to hold them up. Our coffee table didn't photograph quite how I had hoped, but the top is a piece of glass that I sprayed with looking glass paint and made look like mercury glass. (The tutorial can be found here.)

Arm chair - Ikea, here
Rug - Ikea, here
Lamp - Ikea, here 
Gold leaf platter - Target, here
Gray curtains - Ikea, here

As you can tell, our home is made up of salvaged pieces, Target, and Ikea. Where do you buy most of your furnishings?

Friday, December 13, 2013

House Tour | Bathroom remodel

Moving right along on our house tour, the next room up is the bathroom. Or one of them at least. Each bathroom received the same treatment, so there's really no point in sharing them both. We didn't do a ton in these bathrooms but I'm really pleased with the way they turned out. 

Both bathrooms were painted a bright, lime green which really wasn't our taste. It affected the lighting in the room and really made them seem small... which they are but I knew I could make them feel larger.

You can see in the before photo that I divided the wall with painters tape just above the white tile backsplash. I really wanted a sophisticated black bathroom but because there was so much white in the room with the vanity, stool and wall tile, it seemed like a better idea to paint the walls white. To get the best of both worlds, I painted the top black and the bottom white. A piece of chair rail divides the two colors and keeps it really clean looking.

There's not much storage in the room itself, so I added a glass shelf to keep toiletries and washcloths for guests. A small bowl holds a few of my favorite Lush soaps.

It didn't photograph well in the room but we changed out the light fixture above the sink with this one from Lowes. It's more contemporary than the former one and goes better with the look of the room.

Shower curtain - Target, similar here
Shelf - Ikea, here
Bowl - World Market

I'm still looking for a decorative piece to hang above the shelf. Something gold would be gorgeous. We haven't settled on a floor yet but I'm thinking a dark gray tile like this one. What do you think?

Thursday, December 12, 2013

2014 Calendar!

Let's get ready for 2014, shall we? I'm feeling like 2014 should be a full year of celebration. So to give nod to the celebration, a calendar full of confetti.

Download your copy of the calendar here. Not in to printing it yourself? Pick it up from my shop, right here and I'll send you a copy!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

KJB turns 28!

Happy birthday to my husband! A few pictures of us from our very first date to our honeymoon... and apparently we don't get out much now because I couldn't find a recent photo of us. I better get on that. Anyway, we are going to have his favorite dinner tonight and a yummy chocolatey cake.

KJB, I hope your day is easy peasy and full of laughter. I love you times a million!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

House Tour | Dressing Room

GOOD MORNING FRIENDS! It's Tuesday, it's pretty outside and warm inside and I'm hyped up on coffee. So what better day to start sharing our house tour! I want to start with my FAVORITE room in the house, which is my dressing room. The closets in our house are pretty small so I decided to use one of our spare rooms to house my clothes, my vanity, and accessories.

The room was in decent shape but there were a few things I wanted to do. The wall I wanted my vanity on had green chalkboard paint and it wasn't really necessary to have a chalkboard in my dressing room. But if it becomes a child's room in the future, I may want the chalkboard wall back. So I just used a piece of paneling to cover it up.

I also knew I wanted to take down the window treatments. They were young looking and didn't let in any light. The room looked so much bigger by changing out the heavy curtains with sheers.

My scarves are the only thing left that I need to figure out how to store. You can see in the photo that I just have them in a clear bag right now but I want a better way to store them. I have too many a lot and I don't want to hang them because I think it will look bulky. Before we moved, I had them on a scarf hanger and I just really didn't like it. Share your ideas with me in the comments!

Vanity - salvaged
Mirror - salvaged
Chair - TJ Maxx
Vanity lamps - Ikea, here
Drawers - Ikea, here
Nail polish holder - rummage
Shelves - Target, here
Miniature rocking chair - made for me years ago
Rug - Ikea, here
Sheers - Ikea, here
Small necklace stand - Target, here

My sunglasses are hung on a tiered hanger like this one, and my large necklaces are on coat hooks like this one.

How do you store your accessories?

Friday, December 6, 2013


If an extraordinary dream has been placed on your heart, remember that God doesn't do that without reason. He will help you through all the things that is His will.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Gift Wrap Style | Pillow Boxes

 Today my dear friend Megan is sharing a fun way to wrap gifts with supplies you most likely already have in your house. I love this idea for those little trinket gifts that you don't want to get lost under the tree. For more from Megan, see this gift she wrapped for us last year

cost: $0

craft time: 5 minutes

supplies & process:
a // wrapping paper scraps, a cereal box, a pillow box template, tape, scissors, a pen or pencil, glue, and a marker

b // cut the template out of the paper. cut open your cereal box so that it lays flat.

c // pattern side up, trace the template onto the box then cut it out. mark the areas that you are going to need to fold the box.

d // use the scissors to score along the edges that will need folded. this will ensure that you get a clean edge. use a bit of glue to fold the box into the pillow shape. we tried this with the tape first but it did not want to hold. glue is the way to go.

e // once the glue is dry, fold in the bottom flaps.

f // use a bit of scrap wrapping paper to decorate the box. this is the perfect way to use up some of those oddly sized pieces of paper.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Gift Wrap Style | Leather & Lace

One hot trend this past fall was combining the edginess of leather with the feminine feel of lace. I wanted to replicate that on my Christmas packages this year using things I already had around the house. Obviously I don't think you should wrap your gifts with real leather or even faux leather, but it was fun to try to make plain-ol tissue paper look like leather.
cost: I had all these items in my craft box but I can't imagine that it would cost any more than a roll of wrapping paper.

craft time: about 5 minutes plus wrapping time

supplies & process:
a // You'll need tissue paper - I recommend brown, tan, or black since those are the most common leather colors, FREEZER PAPER (not wax paper like I originally tried, mega oops on my part!), an iron, mod podge if you want to make it look shiny, a piece of lace

b // Wad your tissue paper up tight. Then carefully flatten it back out.

c // Place it on top of a piece of freezer paper, which should be shiny side up.

d // With your iron on high, run it over the tissue paper. Be careful not to go over an exposed edges of freezer paper. The iron will bond the two pieces together but leave a few nice wrinkles that looks like leather.

e // If you want your leather shiny, coat the paper with ModPodge. This will also give more weight to your paper. Once it's dry, wrap your gift. - When I do the rest of my gifts, I will probably skip this step. Too much shine can make it look like a trash bag :)

f // Trim down the lace into a long strip and tie it on the gift however you like.

I used wood gift tags with metallic paint pens. If you have a wood burner, give it a try on the gift tag for an extra special look. I going to try to find one on a Black Friday sale today.

What's your gift wrap style?

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Support Small Businesses! | a few favorites

it's Hump Day! but it's Friday for many of us. so that makes it Frump Day! or Himp Day! Whichever you prefer. Today I wanted to share a few of my favorite small businesses so after you wake up from your food coma, you have a few great shops to start your holiday shopping - or finish your holiday shopping depending on how organized you are.

this list may not get everyone on your shopping list but it's a great starting point...

a // Eva Marie Typograpy - These coasters are just one of my favorites from her shop. She does lovely art for cards, prints and coasters.

b // Oh Sweet Joy - Ohh, how I love her headbands! She recently added a holiday collection and wire headbands!

c // Aleks Handmade - For the little ones in your life, stock up on these softies and other goodies. The price tags can't be beat and the style is ADORABLE.

d // Amanda Lynne Designs - Clutches and wristlets for your girlie heart. Her bags have fun prints and are perfect for organizing in your purse or to carry on a quick trip to the grocery store.

e // Naptime Diaries - Scripture and hymns written on the walls of your house. If that doesn't sound perfect, I don't know what is. There's something here to touch everyone's' hearts, lift them up, and share joy.

f // Amy Cornwell - Her jewelry is STUNNING, y'all. A princess ring is on my wishlist. I have one of her Reese necklaces that she graciously gave to everyone at the Influence Founding Members dinner and I wear it basically everyday.

g // NS Pottery - Whether you're looking for coffee mugs or statement necklaces, this girl has it. And her color range is perfection. I'm a big fan of the latte mug and stamped spoon combo; it's perfect for the coffee/tea/hot chocolate fanatic in your life.

h // FlutterbyHannah - Sorry, guys. I know I've raved about Hannah's work before but I just can't help myself. Her work is amazing, her little ones are ADORABLE, and I get to call her a friend. Pick up something for the whole family from this lovely lady.

i // After Hours Agenda - Got a guy into graphic tees? I love their designs, especially the Alter Ego tee and the Glenn Coco tee.

j // Month of Mae - Whether for a big guy or a little guy, they have some great patterns and solids in necktie and bow-tie form. This gingham one is a favorite of mine.

k // One Simple Red Stitch - This girl knows how to use patterns! I love the combinations she has on her crayon rolls, pennant banners, and onesies. The kiddos will love them too!

l // Undulating Contours - For the guy who has it all, give him a place to store it all. If he's anything like KJB, he likes to use his nightstand as a catch all. Maybe one of their organizers will give him a place for everything.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Gift Wrap Style | Guest Post by Elise from Sunday Charm Blog

Today my friend Elise from Sunday Charm Blog is taking over. I asked her to share her gift wrap style and I must say, I'm smacking myself in the head for not thinking of this idea myself. It's so personal and fun, just like Elise. Come back the next few weeks to see more gift wrap style.

- $2 per 18 x 24 engineer print at Staples
- $1 per 3 gift boxes at Dollar Tree 
- $3 for yarn at JoAnn Fabrics

craft time: 5 minutes, or however long it takes for you to wrap a gift

- engineer print
- gift box
- yarn or twine
- tape
- scissors

Are you familiar with engineer prints? They are poster-size, black & white pictures printed on paper (not photo paper) with a matte finish at Staples. The 18 x 24 size is less than $2 per print! Staples has larger sizes available (if you are wrapping larger items). For these gifts, I printed two photos: a wedding photo for my husband's gift and a cityscape photo (via Unsplash) for my mom's gift. 

1. order engineer prints at your local Staples
2. use the poster-size prints like normal wrapping paper, and wrap your gifts
3. wrap/tie yarn or twine around the packages

The great thing about using photos as wrapping paper: no gift tags necessary and no forgetting who the gift is for!

Thanks for letting me take over your space for the day, Courtney! Happy holidays everyone :) 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

G R A T I T U D E | free printables for Thanksgiving!

With Thanksgiving just next week, I wanted to show gratitude to my friends online (yes, you!) by offering a few printable quotes. By the way, if I could just interrupt for a moment, how in the world is Thanksgiving already next week? Where did this past year go? Better question, how are you feeling about your goals you had set for this year? ... yeah, that's a rough one. Instead, let's be grateful for the amazing blessings God has given us this year.

Download here.

Download here.

Download here.

All three printables are sized at 8x10. Enjoy!

Monday, November 11, 2013

weekly truth

luke 1:45

+ + +

Can I start out my weekend recap by complaining a bit? I don't mean to be whiny but sometimes I'm like.... "whhhhhyyyyyyyyyyy?"

First complaint: our bed broke. Again. This is what happens when you buy cheap furniture. I don't know how many times we've replaced the slats and the running boards but I'm over it. OVER IT. Go away dumb bed frame.

Second complaint: Our couch has a pullout bed so we decided to sleep on that since the bed is broken. Wouldn't you just know that it would break too? --- let me interrupt myself before you guys go thinking we are being to rough on these beds. We are tired and old. We were NAPPING. Sunday after church, napping on the couch and two seconds later we are folded up like a taco. I didn't know I could still touch my nose to my knees but apparently I can, so that's good to know. The metal leg that supports the middle of the bed decided it was done holding us up, so it stopped.

Yes, that's two beds in two days.

Third complaint: we slept on an air mattress last night which is cold and squeaky. Naturally today I have a stiff neck and back.

That's all the complaints I have. So let me share a bit of the good stuff...

Our basketball clinic brought in 34 kids on saturday and we saw a good number of them show up to church Sunday morning. GOD IS GOOD, y'all.

We had a great Veteran's Day service last night. I hope all of you will take a moment today to thank someone for their service. we have the freedom to worship an amazing God, because some brave people have fought, and continue to fight for us. Be gracious to them today and everyday. Shake their hand, buy them a meal, do something to show your gratitude. They are the ones that give us our freedom.

Happy Monday friends.

Friday, November 8, 2013

where I've been + a video of a REAL GHOST





It's been quiet around the blog this week. I can even hear the crickets chirping.

Let's catch up a bit today, shall we? First, I need you to watch this video.... It's not too scary, don't worry

Seriously, I couldn't stop laughing. I found this right before bed on Monday night and I got caught in one of those can't-stop-can't-breathe-body-shaking-abs-hurting-tears-rollin kind of laughs and KJB thought I'd gone off the deep end. Really, it's not that funny but it tickled my funny bone for a good 30 minutes that night.

Next, I never shared my Halloween costume, so let's take a minute to do that...

If ya wanna be my lover, ya gotta get with my friends. Just sayin.

So, that was fun.

The biggest reason for hibernation on the blog this week (ok, it's been like three days but that feels SO long) is because somehow we ran straight into busy season. As if we weren't busy enough, the move & packing & cleaning changed our bit of rest time into "maniac Courtney time" which isn't too fun for either of us. It is winding down though, all of the rooms are painted and there's only 45 boxes left to unpack and an entire kitchen to stain... clearly, we are getting there.

Also, as you may have read in this post, I've been praying a lot about this young adult group. Sunday school starts December 1st and we have 18 people ready to go, which is 15 more people than I'm comfortable with but I guess that's how the Lord works, huh?

We are hosting a basketball clinic at church tomorrow and it sneaked up on us too. Is sneaked a word? Because it's putting a squiggle red line below snuck, which I totally thought was a word. I digress. We have volunteers, we have snacks, we have basketballs and hoops. Now, we are just praying that some kids show up. Pre-registration was not required so now I'm paranoid. Go away evil thoughts.

And lastly, my breakfast from last Saturday. 

Yes, that's a doughnut with pumpkin icing, cream, and a carmel covered pretzel. Yes, it was delicious. 

Happy Friday to you all, hope your weekend is spectacular :)