Tag Archives: house

Julie’s 1st Trip to IKEA

This weekend was pretty big for me; for the first time ever, I went to IKEA. I’ll give you a minute to take that end. IKEA. Before Sunday, the closest I’d been to the iconic store was the song by Jonathan Coulton. I was excited but a little apprehensive, since I’ve had people tell me before how overwhelming the store can be and also how you can get lost if you’re not careful. However, my adventure was being coordinated by two IKEA veterans, and they were bound and determined that I was going to get the most out of my inaugural trip.

That’s right; we IKEA selfied, and you know what? We weren’t the only ones.  If you’ve never been before, IKEA is broken down into 3 main sections: The Staging Area, The Marketplace & The Warehouse. There is also a cafe AND a cafeteria (where they serve their famous meatballs), but they were packed with people and therefore off the agenda for this particular trip. We started in the staging area with notepads and tiny golf pencils in hand to make our lists of what we wanted to pick up from the marketplace and warehouse afterwards. That quickly turned into us taking pictures of the tags/items with our phones, but hey, we got it done. 
Three show rooms in, my head was already spinning from so many great things for really great prices! I wanted all of it, and I was quickly beginning to realize that I was going to have to be strategic about my purchases or I’d spend way more than I had budgeted. 
Mostly I was looking for storage containers and quirky kitchen items, but honestly, I saw some larger pieces that I’d like to incorporate into our home. I am already planning a return trip with the husband since I like to let him weigh in on things like that. I was also absolutely sure he’d love the “exploding” lamp below. Not really my thing, but he had fun looking at the pictures none the less. 
I did have one minor issue on this trip. The wood based bell jars below were the one thing I HAD to have, and although they were in several of the staged spaces, I couldn’t find them in the marketplace. Finally, I tracked down an employee, and he told me that they hadn’t had a chance to restock them. Which I get, but when I asked if I could purchase one of the staged sets (since I’d seen about a dozen), he informed me that I just have to come back or use the website. A minor annoyance and, I think, a dumb policy, but I’ll get my hands on them eventually. 
LOVED these floating tea balls, so much so that I purchased two sets so I could share with my tea loving friends.   Someday, I will own this tub, it was huge and I will soak in it every single night when the stars aline to make it mine. 

So much fun, and I left with so many ideas. Andy and I are going to try to head back in the next few weeks to implement some of the short term fixes I found for our home and to make a longer list of items that we want to start purchasing and integrating as our financial situation permits. Also, so I can check out the cafeteria 😉

Sleeping in Trees

Well, tree houses to be more specific. Right after college, my aunt let me move into her second home, a small house, on stilts, in the middle of the woods. The driveway was impassable when it rained and I had to face my intense fear of spiders daily, but it was one of the best places I’ve ever lived. There were many a Friday where I would turn off my phone, grab take out on the way home and spend the whole weekend basking in the blissful solitude.  Octavian and Stanley loved it too, they would spend all day curled up on the bed in loft, or stretched out on the screened in back porch. When I saw this post featuring this gorgeous tree house retreat, it brought back all those wonderful memories.

treehouse front porch with slide Treehouse photo by Samantha Erin Photography Treehouse photo by Samantha Erin Photography treehouse mascot treehouse front entrance Hammock chair on front porch Treehouse photo by Samantha Erin Photography Treehouse photo by Samantha Erin Photography Treehouse photo by Samantha Erin Photography

Did you see the giant red slide?! One of the coolest things about this particular tree house is that owner Lynne Knolton used reclaimed and upcycled items to build it.

Images from here.

Beautiful Barn

I love this renovated old barn. The stone work, the exposed beams and all of the wonderful light? Heaven. I also really like that the decor, while lovely, is mostly functional. Houses are meant to be lived in, and while I understand the desire to have the perfect showcase home, I’d much rather be able to flop onto the couch without having to worry about ruining something. I really like the coffee table in the living room, I could see Andy and I taking turns sitting on it while the other one pushed the table around the room, I can even hear Andy making the “vroom-vroom” noises. A little immature, but so much fun!

Barn 9 barnhouse2 barnhouse3 barnhouse9 barnhouse4 barnhouse5 barnhouse8 barnhouse7



Images from Honestly…WFT and Elmueble



My house is a mess. For a few weeks it seemed like Andy and I had gotten the cleaning routine down pat, but one lazy weekend and two days into a crazy work week and we’re back to rifling through the “clean” laundry basket for something to wear to work. I know houses don’t magically clean themselves, but my roommate in college was a stress cleaner and I got really spoiled. Obviously, I still had to keep my room cleaned and help out with the dishes, but the floor was always vacuumed and cabinets were always orderly. In all honesty I used to tease her something fierce about all the compulsive cleaning, but I have my own deep dark cleaning compulsion, the bathroom. I hate messy  bathrooms. I even remember scrubbing the the bathroom floor at 3am in my party clothes because we’d had people over and I couldn’t sleep until the bathroom was clean again. Don’t even get me started on public restrooms! Now that that is out of my system, back to the messy house. I’ve been trying to find some organizational tips to help me get our house under control (you know procrastinating instead of actually cleaning). These are a couple of my favorites.

1. Store Sheets in Matching Pillowcase

Home 1

To keep  matching bed linens together, fold the top sheet, bottom sheet and tuck them into the matching pillowcase. This also makes for easier storing and stacking in your linen closet.

2. Spices at your Fingertips

Home 2

This is a trick I picked up a few years back, put your most commonly used spices in magnetic spice tins and keep them on the side of your refrigerator. It frees up cabinet space and you’ll never have to frantically dig through your pantry while cooking dinner again. I use these.

3. Aesthetic Jewelry Storage

Home 3

Glue glass bottles to the bottom of a decorative crate and then mount it on the wall. It’ll be a lovely showcase for bracelets and a convenient way to keep track of them.

4. Taking Storage to New Heights

Home 4

Mount a shelf above your bathroom or closet doors to provide extra storage for rarely used items. Don’t forget to keep a step stool or taller friend handy.

To see more great organizing and storage options click here.

Images from here.

Home again, home again…

Andy and I are officially back in Tallahassee. We ended up having one of those crazy world wind trips that are over before you know it, but still leave you feeling like you’ve been away from home for weeks instead of days. We drove to Ashville on Friday night after work, and spent most of Saturday with my brother. We spent the morning driving and hiking to couple of the more popular waterfalls in the area, and then had a late lunch at the Early Girl Eatery and did some shopping downtown.

Murphy Weekend 5 Murphy Weekend 10 Murphy Weekend 6

There was only a .06 mile hike, via a well maintained and well marked trail, to the falls, so my brother and I didn’t bother to change out of our flip flops. That and our t-shirts earned us a few strange looks from the real hikers that were bundled up against the freezing 65 degree weather, and carrying enough gear to last them a week in the wilderness. Clearly we don’t take our outdoors adventures seriously.Murphy Weekend 9 Murphy Weekend 8 Murphy Weekend 4 Murphy Weekend 7 Murphy Weekend 2 Murphy Weekend 1 Murphy Weekend 3

Unfortunately, I didn’t any other pictures for the rest of the trip, but it was all pretty uninteresting. Multiple trips to Home Depot and Walmart to get painting/cleaning supplies and then lots of painting and wallpaper scrapping. I am looking forward to some serious sleeping in this weekend.