Thursday, May 29, 2014

Grace at Home No. 107


Welcome to the Grace at Home party! I'm so glad you're here!  Grace at Home is a weekly time to stop and give thanks for the grace that God extends to us and to celebrate the ways we make our homes places of grace.

Here are a few of my favorites from last week's party.

Tammy from The Colored Door made a dessert stand from thrift store glasses and clear plates.  So clever!


Nici from Posed Perfection shared her recipe for Marinated Flank Steak, including instructions on just how to make the marinade work best and how to grill the steak!


Kendra from Joy in Our Home shared all the details of a camping-themed birthday party.  Lots of inspiration!



Jenise from Do-It-Yourself Fun Ideas created a planter from a thrift-store high-heeled shoe.  Now that's creative!


Lila from Mimi, Mommy, and Me shared a free printable of a lovely child's prayer.  Love this!


These are just a few of my favorites.  Thank you to everyone who joined last week's party!  I'm so grateful for each person who links up each week. If you've been featured, feel free to grab the "I was featured" button (the code is right over in my sidebar).  I'd be so proud if you displayed it!



 
Now for this week's party!  Grace at Home is a place for you to share anything related to making your home a place of grace. I invite you to link posts about
  • DIY projects
  • decorating
  • recipes
  • hospitality
  • homemaking tips
  • parenting
  • marriage
  • faith
  • self-care
  • soul care
Whatever you do to make your home a place of grace, I'd like to hear about it.  Here's what I ask of you.  Please include the permalink to your post, not your blog's home page.  Please let people know that you've linked up.  No more than three posts per person, please.  And visit at least one of the other party participants--that's what really makes it a party!



Monday, May 26, 2014

Lest we forget


What a privilege it is to live in the land of the free!



So many have paid the price of our freedom with their lives.  On this day, we remember and thank them.  And for those even now putting themselves in harm's way on our behalf, we pray:

Eternal Father, strong to save,
Whose arm hath bound the restless wave,
Who bidd'st the mighty ocean deep
Its own appointed limits keep:
O hear us when we cry to Thee
For those in peril on the sea.

O Christ, whose voice the waters heard
And hushed their raging at Thy word,
Who walkedst on the foaming deep,
And calm amid the storm didst sleep:
O hear us when we cry to Thee
For those in peril on the sea.

O Trinity of love and pow'r
Our brethren shield in danger's hour;
From rock and tempest, fire and foe,
Protect them, wheresoe'er they go:
Thus everymore shall rise to Thee
Glad hymns of praise from land and sea.

                                                --William Whiting

A blessed Memorial Day to you!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Grace at Home No. 106


Welcome to the 106th Grace at Home party!

The weeks are just flying by, aren't they? I can hardly believe that Memorial Day weekend is upon us.  I am grateful for this chance each week to stop and give thanks for the grace that God extends to us and to celebrate the ways we make our homes places of grace.

Here are a few highlights from last week's party:

This iris door basket created by Debi from Surroundings by Debi just took my breath away.  Isn't it beautiful?  She shows exactly how she made it.

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Maria Elena from Our Home away from Home updated her home library, and I think her space looks lovely!  I'd love to curl up in that wingback chair with a good book.



Barb at Second Chance to Dream rounded up 22 Caprese salad recipes.  This is one of my favorite summertime treats, so I'm glad to have lots of ways to prepare it!


Susan Gay from Quite Simply is a girl after my own heart--she loves the Waterlogue app as much as I do, and she's creating some beautiful artwork!  Just look at this lovely painting of Texas bluebonnets!  She shares some good tips for getting the most out of this fun app.

 

Susan from A Vintage Farmwife shared her struggle in dealing with the news of this world. Very thought-provoking!


As for me, I revealed the transformation of my kitchen island.  I'm so excited to be making progress in my kitchen!

These are just a few of my favorites.  Thank you to everyone who joined last week's party!  I'm so grateful for each person who links up each week. If you've been featured, feel free to grab the "I was featured" button (the code is right over in my sidebar).  I'd be so proud if you displayed it!


 

Now for this week's party!  Grace at Home is a place for you to share anything related to making your home a place of grace. I invite you to link posts about
  • DIY projects
  • decorating
  • recipes
  • hospitality
  • homemaking tips
  • parenting
  • marriage
  • faith
  • self-care
  • soul care
Whatever you do to make your home a place of grace, I'd like to hear about it.  Here's what I ask of you.  Please include the permalink to your post, not your blog's home page.  Please let people know that you've linked up.  No more than three posts per person, please.  And visit at least one of the other party participants--that's what really makes it a party!




Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Kitchen island makeover


This spring has been an adventuresome time for my kitchen.  Not so many culinary adventures, but decorative adventures for sure.  One by one, we're making changes to create a lighter, brighter space that has more of a farmhouse look.

Here's how the kitchen island area started:


And here it is today:



We started the process earlier this year by painting the island a delicious green, Oakmoss by Sherwin-Williams.  Then we added new knobs and drawer pulls, Gilmore from Restoration Hardware.

Now we've finally finished the island makeover.  This final part of the makeover included the easiest project and the most difficult.

We're blessed to have a counter-depth refrigerator in this kitchen, but having that kind of fridge comes with a price: much less space than a full-depth model.  For a long time I've thought that a beverage refrigerator would be a great addition to this kitchen, and I had the perfect spot for one at the end of the kitchen island.  The island had large cabinet at the end that I formerly used for storing miscellaneous items.  Let me tell you:  getting rid of miscellaneous items is good for the soul!


I knew that do this bit of cabinet surgery was not a DIY job--not for me, at least!  After I ordered the right size beverage refrigerator (I chose a U-Line), I called in the pros.  If you follow me on Instagram, you've already had a sneak peek of the process.


And here's the finished product:





For such a low-profile appliance, the beverage fridge holds a LOT:



This model includes dual temperature zones: the top racks are the right temperature for chilling bottles of wine and the bottom area is colder for other beverages.  The very bottom is a half shelf, and it seemed a good place for storing lemons and limes.

As difficult as adding the beverage fridge was, the other improvement was simplicity itself: adding new pendant lights.


I wanted a brighter, more old-fashioned, farmhouse look, so I started searching online--and to my utter delight, I found just what I wanted at Ballard Designs.  The best part?  These are simply adapters that screw into existing can light fixtures.  The only skill needed to install these is a little patience when it comes to getting the cords all the same length.

I like the way they look with Edison bulbs.  Tip: Amazon.com is a great source for vintage-style bulbs! (affiliate link)


Here's how they look all lit up:


So now I'm one giant step and one baby step closer to having the farmhouse kitchen I've been wanting!  I'm hoping to reveal the whole makeover in the next couple of weeks.  I'm really eager now to get this project finished!


Have you completed any projects in your home lately?  

I'm linking to these wonderful parties:

The Scoop at Stone Gable
Inspire Me Monday at Sand and Sisal
Inspire Me Tuesday at A Stroll Thru Life
One Project at a Time at A Bowl Full of Lemons
Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Grace at Home No. 105


Hello, friends!  Welcome to the Grace at Home party!  This is where we meet to give thanks for the grace that God extends to us and to celebrate the ways we make our homes places of grace and love.

Here are a few of my favorites from last week's party:

Laura from Decor to Adore transformed a dark hallway by creating a gallery wall with a nautical theme--and she did the whole thing for less than $11!

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Penny from Penny's Vintage Home creates the most beautiful, romantic art, and she came up with a way to store and organize her ribbon that actually looks like a work of art itself!



Laura from The Turquoise Home provides simple tips for staining an outdoor structure.  Perfect timing for spring!



Lots of people are freshening up their outdoor decor for spring, like Shenita from Embellishments by SLR:


And Jenny from Holidays at the Harris Home gives step-by-step instruction on making this lovely wreath:



Rachel from Online Sisterhood shared an easy recipe for making flour tortillas:



And the Lou Lou Girls showed us how to make Soft Pretzel Bites:

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Becky from Time Out really made me think with her post, "Who Took My Stapler?"



These are just a few of my favorites.  Thank you to everyone who joined last week's party!  I'm so grateful for each person who links up each week. If you've been featured, feel free to grab the "I was featured" button (the code is right over in my sidebar).  I'd be so proud if you displayed it!


 

Now for this week's party!  Grace at Home is a place for you to share anything related to making your home a place of grace. I invite you to link posts about
  • DIY projects
  • decorating
  • recipes
  • hospitality
  • homemaking tips
  • parenting
  • marriage
  • faith
  • self-care
  • soul care
Whatever you do to make your home a place of grace, I'd like to hear about it.  Here's what I ask of you.  Please include the permalink to your post, not your blog's home page.  Please let people know that you've linked up.  No more than three posts per person, please.  And visit at least one of the other party participants--that's what really makes it a party!




Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Best plants for a shady porch


One of our favorite rooms in this house isn't really IN this house at all.  It's the front porch, which we use as an outdoor living room.  Summers in North Carolina are hot, but we're blessed to have a porch that's tucked into a cool, shady spot.


There's just one problem with shade: how do you get plants to grow there?  Of all places, a front porch must have some greenery!

Every time I've asked this question at a garden center, I've gotten the same answer: impatiens.  Right, right.  We all know that impatiens will grow in the shade.  But is there anything else?  I'm glad you asked!

Here are some of my favorite plants for a shady porch.

Hosta.  Yes, I know, most people plant hosta in the ground, where it comes back year after year.  But a single hosta plant will grow quite well in a container, and this plant thrives in the shade.  Tuck a little moss around the base of the plant for a finished look.





Ivy.  Ivy loves the sun, but it will grow just fine in the shade.  I usually purchase the tiniest plants available and plant two or more of them in my planters.  I love the way the tendrils cascade over the sides.  Bonus: ivy can survive the winter, so you can have green all year round.


Here's another idea.  Remember, plants need light, but they can do well with artificial light as well as sunlight.   I have lamps on my front porch, and the ivy plant under the lamp does especially well.


Coleus.  Of all shade-loving plants, I think coleus is the best.  I just planted the coleus in these planters, and it's already lush and full.  Coleus is wonderful because it comes in many shades of green, pink, and purple--I like to mix varieties.  This plant is a shade-loving winner!  Do note that coleus does not like cold weather.  Don't plant it outside until the danger of freezing is past.  Coleus will last all through the summer and until the first freezing temperatures of the autumn.


Growing plants in containers is easy and rewarding.  Just remember to water as needed (more often in hot weather).  For added lushness, add some Miracle-Gro to the water every now and then.




If you need some beautiful pots for your porch, did you know you can created your own "aged" pots? Click here for an easy tutorial!

Did you know that you can easily give clay pots a beautiful, "aged" patina? Here's how to do it!

If you'd like to see more of my "outdoor living room," click here.

Do you have a covered porch?  What are your favorite plants?

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Soul care for Mother's Day


Words can't express how grateful I am for these guys who changed my name to "Mom":

 The years surely fly by!



Sometimes I need a reminder that I'm a child, able to depend on my heavenly Father for all that I need. This old hymn has been playing in my heart the past few days. Perhaps it'll bless you, too!


A blessed day to you!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Grace at Home No. 104


Welcome, friends!  It's time for this week's Grace at Home party!  I'm so glad you're here to celebrate all the ways we make our homes places of grace and beauty.

Here are a few of my favorites from last week's party.

Paula from Sweet Pea transformed a bench for her screened porch with a coat of paint in a bold color.  Isn't this beautiful?


Further testimony to the power of paint comes from this darling cart re-do from D.D.'s Cottage and Design.


If you like well-organized spaces, you must check out the sewing/craft room from Carol at An Oasis in the Desert.  I think she could do anything in this room!


Kendra from Joy in Our Home shared the recipe for this Cinnabon Cinnamon Roll Cake.  This looks delicious! Can't wait to try this recipe.

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And Lil from Just a Lovely Day shared a recipe for Amish White Bread.  I think my family would love this!



Last but not least, I loved "An Impending Storm" from Debby at My Favorite Things.  A beautiful reflection on God's faithfulness!



These are just a few of my favorites.  Thank you to everyone who joined last week's party!  I'm so grateful for each person who links up each week. If you've been featured, feel free to grab the "I was featured" button (the code is right over in my sidebar).  I'd be so proud if you displayed it!


 

Now for this week's party!  Grace at Home is a place for you to share anything related to making your home a place of grace. I invite you to link posts about
  • DIY projects
  • decorating
  • recipes
  • hospitality
  • homemaking tips
  • parenting
  • marriage
  • faith
  • self-care
  • soul care
Whatever you do to make your home a place of grace, I'd like to hear about it.  Here's what I ask of you.  Please include the permalink to your post, not your blog's home page.  Please let people know that you've linked up.  No more than three posts per person, please.  And visit at least one of the other party participants--that's what really makes it a party!