August 20, 2014

DIY :: Fireplace Makeover

I feel like a broken record. I haven't said it on my blog, but my husband is tired of hearing me say it. I'm antsy. I'm ready for change. I can blame it on a number of reasons. My childhood was filled with nonstop change. New houses, new siblings, new friends. I lost count of the number of times we moved (in the same town) by the time I got to high school.

College was filled with crazy change. I moved to Nashville. Moved back to Missouri. Got married. Moved back to Nashville. 

Life since we moved here has been nothing if not exciting. We've moved three times. Our "church friends" became extended family members. We both landed our dream jobs (well, both of us landed my dream job). I traveled a ton. We had a BABY. I quit my job and have had two others since then.

And now. Well, life is pretty predictable. Most days feel like Groundhog's Day. I'm so thankful for this season. I really am. I know so many people are praying daily for life to settle down. For predictable days. I'm not ungrateful. I've just become so accustomed to change that now I seek it. I thrive in it. Change I choose, that is. Good change. 

If it were up to me I would sell our house tomorrow and buy some land. Crosbi would have a treehouse and a tire swing. We currently don't have a single tree. I would grow a garden and have big outdoor dinners for friends. We would play horse shoes and badminton. Maybe one day. I don't let go of dreams too easily, so I'm not writing it off.

But that day isn't today. Today I'm choosing to be content where God has me. To soak in the moments with my daughter at home instead of traveling the country. To not worry about crayon marks on the doors because we're not going anywhere. To embrace boring because my life could be filled with hard change and I would be begging for things to be predictable. I believe God is stirring something inside of me, but I also believe he's asking me to be patient. To be thankful. To know that this too shall pass and I'll miss this season. Every second of it. 

So for now I'm making small changes that make me smile. Like little updates to our home. To make this current space a place I love. I'm going to open our doors more and invite friends in. Good coffee and conversation is just as sweet in a small kitchen as it is in anywhere. 

That was a long way around to getting to our fireplace makeover!

To make our home a bit more cozy, we decided to update our fireplace and give it a stone finish. While actual rock can be expensive, we used AirStone from Lowe's. All in we spent $65. Such a great reminder that home updates don't have to be expensive to be impactful. We borrowed a tile saw from my dad which made the process even easier. The entire project took about half a day. I'm pretty thrilled with how it turned out.

Now to decide what to change next!


August 13, 2014

R&R in the Ozarks

We just returned home from visiting family in Missouri and it was hands down one of the best trips we have taken in a long time. It was the first trip in over a year that we weren't traveling due to a holiday or major event. We had no plans, no schedules, no agendas. The only thing on our to-do list was to relax and enjoy time with family. That's my kind of vacation.

Last Friday we spent all day at the lake. Todd was out on the boat fishing with my dad, while the girls floated on rafts in the water. I hadn't been swimming in a lake in at least five years, when we went with our friends to Center Hill Lake outside of Nashville. It was such a great day. The weather was mild for August and it was just a bit cloudy so that we weren't burning in the sun. One of those days where you literally kiss your cares goodbye. I need more of those.

The next day we shopped, ate lunch at a fun little coffee shop in our hometown, celebrated a cousin turning five, and ate the fish caught at the lake for dinner.

We spent the rest of the weekend on Todd's family's farm where we ate lots of fresh blueberries and veggies from the garden. We went on four-wheeler rides, country drives, and had a bonfire at the creek. We ate greasy pizza at the best dive restaurant you'll find (on another lake) and I even pulled out a book to read while Crosbi played with her grandparents. Seriously. I need more weekends like that. 

It's funny how you don't really appreciate where you're from until you move away. I'm so thankful to be from one of the most beautiful parts of the country. I feel even more blessed to share it with my little girl. She has the Ozarks in her DNA and I couldn't be more proud.

August 9, 2014

Thankful :: July 2014

Since I actually got my blogging act together last month, I don't have many photos that I haven't already posted. July gave us lots to be thankful for, but this post will be short and sweet as I'm currently in Missouri and sneaking on the computer while Crosbi naps.

In July we retreated to the Cabin, picked blueberries and visited St. Louis. But we also...

Played with bubbles on the front porch.

Watched a storm roll in at our CSA.

Pretended to be elephants at the craft store.

Met new "friends" and did a little back to preschool shopping.

August has felt so full already and we're not even half-way through. I'll post more about our time in Missouri, especially about our time at the lake which felt like medicine for this often anxious mama.


July 27, 2014

Life Lately | In Black and White

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that we have had a lot of people in our home this past week. We've hosted cousins, parents, and friends. I have to admit, Todd and I have been doing a lot of daydreaming and talking about moving. We've been in our home for seven years next month and we both have the itch to make memories somewhere new. We would love to have a little more land, possibly close to water. Like I said, we're dreaming. But, we feel like God still has plans for us in our current home and this week was such a great reminder that no matter the size or layout, community happens around the table. It happens when toddlers play together. It happens in your PJs on late nights with lots of ice cream. Who knows what the future has in store, but for now we're trying to be intentional where we are. To not miss what is happening right now by living in the future.

So we're striving to live in the moment. To relish the last of summer. Having a toddler really helps to put things in perspective. Crosbi only lives in the now. Time is relative and to her, things either happened last week or will happen on Thursday. I love that. I have so much to learn from her.


July 22, 2014

Weekend Getaway :: St. Louis

It has been a summer filled with mini-vacations and weekend trips and we're not slowing down yet. We have two more fun trips planned next month and then summer will be over. Crazy. If we blink we might miss it!

This past weekend we went to St. Louis. We typically stay in a hotel downtown to be near all the action, but this time we stayed with good friends and I'm so glad we did. It was really great to share meals and watch our kids play. Lucky for us those same friends will be staying with us next weekend which made saying goodbye much easier.

We hit the zoo, which for those not familiar with St. Louis, is free! This is wonderful, but not the best idea for a weekend visit. It was crazy busy. Crosbi and I ended up spending most of our time on the zoo train because it was tough to see the animals with so many people around. We'll definitely go back, but maybe on a week day.

Todd and I have been known to plan trips around the local food scene, and this trip wasn't an exception. We have a rule that we can't eat at any chain restaurants when we're away from home. We had incredible meals all over the city. Prime rib pizza at PW Pizza, old fashioned malts at Crown Candy Kitchen, and locally farmed meats and veggies at Rooster, voted "Best Breakfast In Missouri."

We watched the Cardinals play the Dodgers and Crosbi ate her weight in cotton candy and ice cream. I think it's safe to say fun was had by all.

Until next time, St. Louis!