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It’s finished!


This was the first room in our house I’ve gotten to decorate as a blank slate and I love everything about it!

When we found out we were having a boy, we started looking for bedding,and the spaceship bedding was the only thing we could find that Hubby and I agreed on. After that, I made a plan with that as our starting point.

Much of that original plan stayed, with a few adjustments. We ended up using a full-sized dresser as a changing table, and that necessitated a switch in room placement with the crib. We also originally planed to purchase a bookshelf from IKEA for the room, but when we found both the dresser, mirror and a matching bookcase on sale as floor samples at a local furniture store, we couldn’t pass it up. As an added bonus, the bookcase we ended up with is solid wood and cost just about what it would have to purchase and  have the IKEA bookshelf shipped to us.

The curtains were tough to figure out though, and despite my best efforts, ended up being a bit of a splurge. I had originally looked for an inexpensive, solid navy black-out curtain, but the best I could find were ones from Pottery Barn kids, at $60 per panel, and I didn’t want to spend over $200 for curtains. I ended up purchasing the fabric and black-out lining and paying someone to sew them custom for me. So, even though they were a bit of a splurge, they were worth it to me because I have exactly what I wanted!

I thought we would luck out with a rug from Target, but the none of the rugs that worked in our room (and there were many that would have fit the color scheme) were the right size. I was afraid we were going to have to shell out over 300 bucks for a rug for the room (NOT GOOD), but thanks to overstock.com, we ended up with lots of choices in a Target-comparable price range. I took a leap of faith and went with a themed rug. Initially I didn’t want anything to overly theme-tastic, but I am so glad I went with this rug!

My goals for the room were to create something that would grow with our little guy, to be a place that’s fun, inspiring, doesn’t take itself too seriously, but is also practical. I think the rug really helps set the tone for fun, inspiring and not being too serious. It does, after all, still include Pluto. But, for me, the details make the room. I love the above photo of my dad as a little boy, and several other of the small touches around the room that make it cute and functional.

We are so fortunate that many of the items in the room, including the crib, were gifts. This really helped up keep costs down, and allowed us to splurge on a few items.

Crib: Graco Lauren Covertable Crib in Espresso, from Target

Dresser, Mirror and Bookcase: Floor Samples from local furniture store

Rocker: Belonged to Grandmother

Rug: Overstock.com

Curtains: Fabric from Joann’s, custom sewn

Lamp: Target

Bedding: Dwell Studio for Target

Orange Bins (one for toys and one for blankets): Target

Monster Nightlight: Target

Jungle Taggie Blanket: Made by friend

All Art: either made by myself, my father or family friend or printed from an online resource

Wooden Blocks: mine as a child

Pillow on Rocker: Target

Quilt on Rocker: Made for me prior to my birth

Pound-a-Peg: Melissa and Doug, purchased new at consignment sale

Mobile: Target

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I hope you all had a very Happy Memorial Day! Hubby and I didn’t do much of anything, since we had just gone camping and will be attending a cookout next weekend, but I did work on one of my ongoing projects!

Since we started whipping our family room into shape I’ve wanted to have a family photo wall. When I visited my parents in April, I finally snagged some of the photos I wanted to use. I still need some from Hubby’s family, and there is a precious photo of my grandmother and great-aunt (identical twins) having a tea party at about age two I am DYING to get a hold of. But here’s what I have so far:

DSC03921I’m not sure I’m sold on the layout, even leaving room for additional photos, and I may try something a little more linear. What I do love are the way the photos look matted and framed, especially the one of my grandmother on the bottom right.

What do you think? Would you go for a more linear layout, or stick to something more “random”?

top-ten-tuesdayI love Ballard Designs. Their furniture and accessories just fit my sense of style — classic lines, but not too busy, with a little touch of whimsy and eclecticism. Anytime Hubby and I look into buying a new piece of furniture, I check out Ballard first. Then, we go tooling around town to see if anything lives up to my Ballard expectations. Today, I present to you my top ten favorite Ballard products, some of which I already have in my home, some I’m still dreaming of. Let me just say that picking just ten products was HARD!

1. Tuscan Bookshelf — This was my very first Ballard purchase! I love the color of my Antique Cherry shelves, and the delivery service was FAB! The lovely gentlemen who delivered these put them exactly where I wanted them, and removed all the trash when he left. And, because I have the two flush bookcases, I can put them anywhere, pushed together to form a large bookcase, or separated as two smaller ones.

2. Richmond Pendant — I recently purchased this pendant for my dining room, and love the simplicity and classic design of this fixture. The smaller scale also works great in my smaller room. I was thrilled to learn when I opened my package that this pendant is from the Colonial Williamsburg Collection, which I also love! One product created by two great companies — you can’t go wrong with that!

3. I dream of someday owning a leather chair, and the Continental Leather Twin Sofa makes my heart beat just a little faster. I love the versatility of this chair; it seats two, which means it would be the perfect size for curling up with a great book, and it pulls open into a twin bed for extra guests.

4. Speaking of versatility, I adore the Eastman Secretary! Frankly, I love all secretarys, thanks to their versatility. They can be used in a office as a primary desk, in an entry way or living room for extra storage. I would love to have one in my bedroom for a place to keep my laptop for blogging, but to use the draws for extra clothing and linen storage.

5. I’ve been coveting these Topiary Plaques for over a year now. The white color of these would really balance out the darker brick that dominates our back deck. The silhouette of these are elegant with just a hint of whimsy, and I can’t say “no” to a plant I can’t kill!

6. Avondale Sideboard — I dream of having a nice sideboard in my dining room, and someday, when I have a slightly larger space, I could love to have this in my dining room. I adore the classic lines and styling, as well as the ample storage.

7. Since space really is at a premium in our house, I’d love to add a console table, like the Martin Console, to the entry way space in our living room. The wood tones of this piece would work well with our existing pieces, and the drawers and additional closed storage space would work perfectly for us!

8. Hubby and I disagree on this one, but I LOVE this Lab print! It reminds me of my precious Goober, but Hubby says the painting bears no resemblance to her. It may not be entering our house soon, but I do still love it!

9. I would love to have the Blue Flower pillow for our bedroom (the colors work perfectly), but its quite a bit out of our price range for a pillow for now.

10. These quilted 4-pocked quilted organizers would be great for a dedicated office in need of some extra storage. For us, it would be a great way to keep our magazines organized, and keep track of incoming and outgoing mail.

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Love lists? To join in the fun, check out Oh!Amanda!

Yesterday morning, I woke up, rolled over and said to Hubby, “Today is a great day! I’ve been waiting for this day for over two, whole years!”

I forced Hubby out of bed before eight o’clock. We showered, had breakfast and then began to prepare for the great day ahead of us. Bookcases moved to another room and replaced with an entertainment cabinet, floors were vacuumed and furniture was tentatively rearranged.

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Then, we got the call! Our brand new sofa would be arriving! I made Hubby sit with me and stare out the window so we could catch the truck the moment it arrived.

dsc03494Before I knew it, two wonderful men were unloading our sofa and placing it in our family room.

dsc03499Once we were happy with the placement, and the chaise and love-seat were locked together, we searched the house for the rest of the furniture we wanted in the room.

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dsc03507I am in love with my new sofa, and my new room! There are a few things I want to tweak, like getting some dark chocolate brown pillows as well as some brighter green pillows for the sofa, but I am so enjoying spending time here now! The room is warm, cozy, and just seems lend itself to family time. Finally, two years later, my dream has come true!

With the arrival of our new sofa eminent (two weeks away!!), Hubby and I have started thinking about our “new” family room. There are two big ticket items currently on our wish-list: a 32 inch LCD TV and a new TV cabinet. We have a media cabinet that one of Hubby’s friends was replacing a few years ago that Hubby inherited, and for now, it works just fine. It has some shelves for storage and display and two covered areas to hide our junk. But, if we purchase a larger TV, our current unit can’t accommodate it. Our TV right now is 25 inches, and a 27 inch cabinet JUST BARELY might fit in. Hubby and I have been looking at traditional style armoire to house our potential new TV, but then we stumbled on this beauty:

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Yes, those doors are hinged to open to 180 degrees and I am seriously in love. Hidden storage when you need it, display storage when you want it, hide the TV when you can’t stop watching and have to cut yourself off otherwise you’ll never go to work again. Gotta love it!

Just a 20-something girl living on the East Coast, trying to figure out life. I'm a wife and mom to two. I'm trying to rediscover my love for long walks, yoga and pilates. But not hiking. I still don't like hills. I was raised at the beach, but I don't like the beach. I like to look at it, but I don't like to swim in it, I'd prefer a pool, thanks. I'm just trying to become the best person I can be -- the woman God wants me to be. That's easier said than done!

E-mail Me!

Contact me at longbrakeliving@gmail.com - I'd love to hear from you!

Hubby is my all-time favorite guy. A perfect mix of serious, sarcastic, laid-back, handy and nerdy, he is the perfect complement to me. I love his strong work-ethic and the way he always loves and supports me through everything. Some of Hubby's favorite things include: hiking, Virginia Tech football, woodworking, and his family. When I married him in July 2007, I had no idea what an amazing journey we were headed on, and how I could come to love him so much more each day.

Our oldest, Colton, is three years old. He is equal parts sassy and hysterical. He loves all things train, car, bus, truck, and machine related. He has a penchant for made-up words and loves to be the clown of his pre-school class. Our younger son, Nathan, was born this May. He is pure joy and full of smiles! He is such a blessing and a perfect fit for our family.