A hard frost made me bring these plants inside. They’re all cold tolerant, but I didn’t want to risk losing them when it is so simple to bring in potted flowers.  

So, after two nights indoors, I woke to this sweet-smelling sight this Palm Sunday morning.  I suppose our 70-degree apartment tricked the bulbs.

 They really brighten up the balcony now that they’re outside.  

 Sweet Lucy even likes to smell them (though I watch carefully as they are toxic to dogs). We enjoyed some relaxation on the porch today as we bathed in the buttery light of the golden hour, listened to cheery wind chimes,  and braced ourselves against cold winds.  

 I also forgot to share that a seagrass rug arrived, and I inadvertently ruined the binding by dragging this huge thing by myself. The damage is hidden underneath the ottoman. Lesson learned: wait to ask a kind neighbor for a hand when needed.

 I do enjoy the texture it adds to the space. And I love the cottage-like quality it possesses. Yes, there are plants and flowers everywhere.    

 The biggest news around here, though, is that one of my dear friends and co-workers received a precious baby girl this week. She surprised her parents and came quite early! She is beautiful as can be, and will be so dearly loved her whole life. 

Bye, T.V. and a Few Little Things

I have been working on making this little apartment feel like a home for nearly 3 and a half years now. Things have slowly transformed to my “style,” and I think I’m finally read to call it done. No, I will never stop rearranging because it’s simply too fun, but I don’t see any reason to try and furnish this temporary living space further and risk it not fitting in out next home. That kind of excites me! Looking forward to a season of just being content with and thankful for the things we have.

In the first months here, I made the mistake of buying things because they were OK, cheap, and filled the space. I ultimately wasted money that way, so my advice to anyone furnishing his or her first place is to wait patiently for things you just LOVE and that are meaningful, and to let it grow from there organically over time. I think there is such a different feeling in a home put together in one fell swoop than in one collected over time. It may not look like a picture from a magazine or be right on trend (ours sure doesn’t), but it will feel like home, and I believe that is infinitely better.We bought this side table at World Market for next to nothing. The original wooden tabletop was cracking,  so the manager gave us a deep discount for buying the floor model. We enjoyed it for a year, but the crack grew and grew. Rather than repairing it with clamps and wood glue (I never really liked the color anyway) or buying a new side table, I found this metal crown tray at Magnolia Market, ordered it, and hoped the measurements given were accurate. I really like this as a tabletop. I was thrilled when it arrived last week and fit like a glove. It’s just quirky enough for me.  

 I also put away the T.V. altogether. I am around chatter all day, so I cherish peace and quiet at home. It will return this September, but I look forward to a quiet Spring and Summer.   I found these coffee bags on a recent trip to Southern Accents Architectural Antiques in Alabama and framed them. I cut them up and framed them (I have a project planned for the bird prints that were in them). I can’t really think of more fitting “art” for two avid coffee drinkers.Edit      My bulbs on the balcony are beginning to bloom.     Spring sunlight stretching into the evening has been heavenly.  I placed a little cloche with a fern and tiny nest on my grandmother’s china to quietly celebrate the season.   Including this because I never want to forget having a dog who insists on being under a blanket. I filled out dough bowl with a few dried hydrangea stems. I would love to know how to do this myself. I have  tried without success.

 This is my favorite find. A vintage mailbox hangs below a special note from my husband. It’s filled with letters written when we were far apart.  My heart could burst. 

P.S. Southern Architectural Accents Antiques rocks. This is it:  

           

Springing Forward Inside

I’ve been adding touches of spring indoors today after a few intensive days of washing slipcovers and linens. Everything smells like Mrs. Meyer’s lemon verbena detergent and it’s like heaven.

I have been aided by a new vacuum, sewing machine, and small cordless vacuum this week, and I know that doesn’t sound exciting at all, but to me it’s a thrill!

My work has been interrupted by a very needy beagle several times, but I don’t mind a bit.

I added a bench to one side of our table, because to me, a bench feels like a casual place to have a seat and relax. I hope everyone who enters feel welcome and at home.  I added my blue bird pillows and love the serene pop of color they add.I really do prefer to decorate seasonally by just changing out natural elements rather than adding lots of decor.  The demijohn of pussywillow branches was replaced with a vase of humble grocery store tulips (which I adore).IMG_9194

It’s starting to feel ready around here. Ready for the warmth to come.

Are you ready for spring to arrive as well?

P.S. Tonight is the night. I am FINALLY sewing my buffalo check drapes… They’ve been frayed material trailing on the floor for far too long! 💕

Prepping the Porch

Our view is a parking lot, so it takes a little extra love to make it a pretty place to sit. But that effort is worth it, because being outside in warm weather is just the best.

I refinished our brown, wicker-style chairs in gray. Up close, quite a bit of brown and white show through the gray which is just what I hoped to achieve. The different tones make it look more natural. 

I grabbed the plush, blue cushions from Target (they’re way more comfy than our thin green ones), and sewed some gray-and-cream envelope pillow covers from duck cloth. I tried to stretch that fabric pretty far, so maybe the two sides don’t quite meet. 🙂

Still, I had a blast using the new sewing machine Mr. S encouraged me to buy. I feel truly spoiled! 



I planted some cold-tolerant pansies to usher in the somewhat warmer weather. Tennessee is too unpredictable to believe we won’t ge a few more hard freezes.

A pair of our planters nestle on the railings, but I always secure them with extra wires to prevent a fall.



I found this little galvanized tray on sale at Hobby Lobby, and hope it will be useful for hosting several sweet girlfriends this spring and summer. 



Also, my favorite color is blue, and while I use it sparingly indoors, I feel free to splash it all over the place outside. 

C’mon over! 💕

Problems to Praise

Tonight, I have to fufill Etsy orders, clean the house, input grades, pay rent, run by the grocery store,  pick up the dog, and buy supplies. 

Thank you, Lord, for a growing business, for the FREE pleausure of a clean home, for the little hands that wrote those papers, for the warm home, for readily-available food, for a pup companion, and for Hobby Lobby just 10 minutes from home. 

May You continue to teach me to turn around my thinking, lay down my perspective, and lift up praise!