farmhouse style

As Seen in Issue 11 of the Magnolia Journal

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Issue No. 11 of the Magnolia Journal surrounds the idea of Freedom and inspires you to celebrate freedom in a number of ways. Maybe you celebrate freedom by choosing a path for you instead of what was expected, maybe it’s letting go of comforts to allow room for growth, maybe it’s packing out your kids into the car and living life on the road, or maybe it’s simply running through the grass barefoot on a summer day with literally nothing else to do. There’s even a summer bucket list that will inspire you to make this the best summer ever and live like you’re a kid again. If this sounds like your jam or you just want some of the grilled flatbread recipes (because they look freaking delicious and easy to make), go get it. If you just want to find a few Joanna Gaines approved items you can buy online, well then, I can help you with that. Just keep scrolling.


Backpack by Walker Family Goods

There’s an entire article about the Walker Family in this issue. They sound kind of amazing and I want to be them for like a week (likely I’d change my mind after 1 day in the car with my kids). Plus I’m just loving the vintage vibe of this bag.

Chemical Free Sunscreen

Look, I use the bad stuff on my kids too because it works. I’m trying to do better though and this one caught my eye.




Coconut Milk Roll On Perfume

There’s a seaweed + sea salt one I really want to try. I haven’t used perfume in years, but this makes me want to try.


But seriously, this issue has me saying all the yeses and I’m really anxious to try the spinach + artichoke flatbread and the tomato + basil flatbread. There’s even a recipe for chimichurri with avocado that sounds amazing too and since our outdoor kitchen is finally up and running, you can bet we might just be trying that one very soon with whatever steak I can get Tyler to cook. I don’t grill so if you know what an appropriate cut of mean for a chimichurri is, feel free to share.

So yeah, if you’re asking my opinion, I’d totally recommend issue no. 11 of the Magnolia Journal.

-Monica

21 Farmhouse Finds at Big Lots

Post contains affiliate links.

I’m pretty sure the last time I was in a Big Lots was approximately 9 ish years ago when we lived about a quarter of a mile from one in San Antonio. The last few days I’ve been seeing them pop up in my Instagram and Facebook feeds with sponsored ads and I’ve got to say, I’m seeing some cute things that I would have never expected from a Big Lots. I’m shocked really and just looked up where my nearest Big Lots is because I think a visit is in order this week.

I’m also the queen of a good deal. I almost never buy anything that isn’t discounted or at least that I know isn’t a good value for the money. There are days that I wish I wasn’t that person, but I am which means I spend a lot of time making sure I’ve found the best deal possible on just about everything. The dog chewed up my son’s shoes the other day and I still haven’t found him a new pair, because I just feel like I could do better than any deals I’ve found online or in store so far. It’s a problem I think.

So yeah, if you’re looking for that Farmhouse look in your home, but on a budget, I may have just found a solution for you with these items from Big Lots. There’s more than this online too, but here are just a few of my favorites with that Fixer Upper vibe.

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Standing House Shelf with Woven Back

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Gold Metal Tabletop Clock

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Gold Metal & Glass 3-Section Test Tube Bud Vase

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Metal House Tealight Candle Holder

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You Are My Home Wood Panel Framed Plaque

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Gray Odessa Throw Pillow (17X17)

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Ether Miranda Diamond Lumbar Pillow (13X18)

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Adelyn Ether Throw Pillow (17X17)

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Bria Gray Stripe Throw Pillow (13X18)

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Small Grid Wire & Wooden Basket with Canvas Liner

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Round Hanging Wall Mirror with Rope (19”)

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“Home Is” Home Icon Framed Wall Plaque

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“Let’s Stay Home” Rustic Plaque

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Hanging Circle Shelf

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Smoky Finish Embossed Glass Bottle with Beads

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Living Colors Woodchip Tabletop Basket

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Cream Ribbed Ceramic Vase

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“Love” Metal & Wood Tabletop Decor

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Crinkle 3-Piece Quilt Set

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Plaid Microfiber 4-Piece Sheet Set

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Silver Galvenized Lantern

So are you as impressed as I am? Seriously, I’ve never seen anything this cute in Big Lots, but I’m happy to see them stepping up their game and providing attractive Farmhouse decor at affordable prices.

-Monica

5 Wall Signs For The Laundry Room

Our laundry room is a mess. We plan to put cabinets in there soonish to help with all of that, but we’re moving through projects at a snail’s pace lately and so it sits neglected and completely disorganized. I accidentally came across the long print from this group of wall signs last week and was like “oh that would be perfect in that one spot when it’s all done”, but then sometimes I feel silly for wanting to decorate the laundry room at all. Let’s face it, anything to make being in there even slightly more enjoyable is a win. I’m not laundry’s biggest fan. I’m more of a #4 from the group of wall signs below (which I’m probably also buying). So if you also have a boring laundry room in need of a facelift, check out these adorable laundry room wall signs below.

Full Disclosure: Post contains affiliate links.

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  1. The Laundry Guide from Kirklands. Once we have our cabinets done, I should have the perfect spot for this one. It’s like it was made for our space.

  2. 24/7 Laundry from Hobby Lobby

  3. Wash and Dry from World Market

  4. Alexa, Do the Laundry from Amazon. This one is just the print with no frame but super affordable so it’s easy to add one to fit whatever your style is.

  5. Laundry Co. from Kirklands

So yeah, go forth, spruce it up, and make doing laundry at least a little more pretty since it ain’t ever going to be fun.

-Monica

Weekend Wrap Up: Lots of Sanding and A Little Bit of Crawfish

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This weekend was a weekend of I’m not really sure where the time went or what all got done. I guess technically we did lose an hour, but even still…

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I’d hoped to finish up some projects this weekend that just weren’t moving along as expected. Lots of lots of sanding went down and I think the sanding part might finally be done. And let’s be real, kids need things so it’s not like these things ever get my full attention for too long. Here’s a visual of what we’re working on. I’m sanding and staining multiple projects at a time because they’ll all get stained the same color and it seems like the easiest way to control having them all look the same. Sometimes I just eyeball the stain mixture and don’t actually measure so… yeah. The picture ledge will get painted the same white as the shiplap, but the rest of these are getting stained.

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I feel like the frames for the mirrors are going to take our bathrooms to a whole new level and I’m really excited about it. Our master bathroom especially is in major need of a transformation and paint and framing the mirrors seem like the biggest bang for our buck. We’ve also got some inexpensive light fixtures from Lowe’s that will be mounted into the header portion of the frame. The top of the frame is a 1x10 and the rest of the frame is going to be made out of 1x4s.

I painted a couple of accent walls black (one in our bathroom and one in the office). I don’t regret it, but admittedly I do regret the sheen. Before we can finish and install the floating shelves, I have to head back to Home Depot for more paint. I went with an eggshell by mistake thinking that was what we used for our outdoor kitchen, but the outdoor kitchen is a satin. I think I may purchase a matte this go around. I did try to sand down the sheen because I saw something on the internet that said I could, but our texture is too heavy for this idea to work so back to painting I go.

Saturday evening we attended a random crawfish boil at our home builder’s house. Two years later he and Tyler still keep in touch even though we were a tough customer. The picture below is all the kids (except Corbin) and their big hearts letting the last two crawfish go. Saida is there on the left cautiously watching the release go down. She was curious, but not interested in getting anywhere near those pinchers.

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My Current Top 10 Home Decor Items on Amazon

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Did you know I have an Amazon Storefront full of my favorite things? It’s true. I’m kind of Amazon Prime obsessed so I sometimes find it therapeutic to shop and add things to my lists (especially when I love something but I’m not ready to buy it or I don’t really need it, but it’s great). It’s funny because most probably don’t think of Amazon when it comes to home decor that actually doesn’t suck, but turns out they have so much amazing stuff. You could literally dress your whole house up with stuff, cute stuff, just from Amazon. Really it’s dangerous.

So anyway, because it doesn’t do anyone any good to keep it to myself….

My Top 10 Favorite Home Decor Items on Amazon Currently in no particular order… (yes I have a black and white obsession)

Also just so we all know, these are just 10 that I was feeling inspired by today. Obviously there is just a ton of awesomeness out there.

  1. I’ve never been to Hawaii, but I dream of going some day. It’s definitely on my list even though I know it’s something that’s now happening anytime soon. In the meantime I’d like to dream about it with this cute Aloha framed print. We’re getting ready to build a ledge shelf in the hallway across from my office and I can see this there on that shelf with other things.

2. I’ve been looking for a rug for my kitchen. I haven’t found the exact perfect thing, but this rug has me wishing I had a spot for it.

3. Lately after checking out the Nesting with Grace blog and Instagram account, I’ve been wanting to add some of these cute wall sconces to my home and of course with my matte black obsession I’ve been eyeing this one in particular. Maybe I’ll actually add a couple to my cart one day soon.

4. Is it weird that I want my laundry to be in something visually pleasing? This is where I’m going with things lately. I’m craving cute for all the boring stuff around my home. This basket has me wondering if laudry might be more fun, if it were pretty. I also kind of have a basket problem.

5. Um the price on these…. pillows and pillow covers can be expensive and these are super affordable and really just super trendy and cute. Loving these covers for sure.

6. And the basket problem continues. I’d like this one in particular for my daughter’s room. There’s just something about paint dipped baskets that I just love. How cute would this be with a spider plant?

7. And we’re not lamp people. We never have been really but for some reason I’m drawn to them. If I was going to buy one, I feel like this would be it.

8. Hello fun and cute tissue box cover. This is plastic and pretty light weight from what I can tell, but it reminds me of some of the cute house figurines I’ve seen as part of the Hearth and Hand (Magnolia) line at Target and the price is right.

9. I secretly want to have my husband run electrical in the breakfast room so we can hang this light fixture. Ooops. Secret is out. I haven’t actually worked up the nerve to ask him to do this yet, but maybe I will soon-ish.

10. I have a giant basket (surprise, surprise) full of blankets. Most of them were given to me and while I’m grateful, none of them really go with anything we have going on right now in our home. I have an urge to give them all away and start fresh.

-monica

Fixer Upper Style For My Windows on the Cheap

Ask me who I'd like to be right now and my asnwer is probably Joanna Gaines minus a few kids because let's be real, two is enough for me.  

An episode of Fixer Upper from season 2 is my inspiration for our latest home improvement project.  I always wanted to do this in our old house, but life never really allowed or rather, we didn't make time.  

See that wood header piece above the window?  I wanted something like that on our otherwise boring windows.

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We don't have curtains for a couple of reasons.  1. Tyler hates them and 2. his allergies are terrible.  Curtains are just one more thing that collect dust and as cute as they are, we've just opted not to do them mostly (I actually have a pair in the dining room and Saida's room).  But this means my windows were so not cool and so boring and weren't really contributing anything to our home in terms of style or character.  Not to mention our home is a brand new home void of much in the way of character to begin with.  So I decided to do this simpliest version of this idea that I could think of.  

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So this was literally as simple as buying wood, cutting it to size, staining it, and screwing it to the wall.  There really isn't anything special about the wood we bought.  I didn't even poly it.  I was really just thinking how do I do this as cheap as possible with as little work as possible and still get something I think looks really cool.  

Next on the list for this room is a rug and maybe a large house plant. 

Side note:  Why are rugs so expensive?  Where do I find an affordable one that doesn't suck? And how do I know how big of one to buy?  I suck at rugs.

OKAY LET'S BREAK DOWN HOW TO DO THIS

STEP ONE: Measure your windows.

In my personal opinion you have two options here.  One is to have a piece of wood for each window and the other is to do like I did here and have a piece of wood for each set of windows.  I measured window sill edge to window sill edge because I wanted a little bit of overhang and that just made sense to me as a simple way to decide on a measurement.

Once I had all my measurements, I took into account how long the boards are at Lowe's and started figuring out how many window treatments I could get per board.

STEP TWO: Family Trip to Lowe's 

Get however many boards you've determined you need.  I'm pretty sure ours are 1x8s, but really you can just get whatever fits the look you're going for.

Wood Stain.  I used a combo of Minwax Weathered Oak and Early American.  1 part Weathered Oak and 3 parts Early American.  I also found a sponge next to the stain that I used to apply the stain once mixed.

Screws - We used black sheetrock screws just because I like to accent with black and it goes with what's happening in our home.  Make sure you buy something that isn't too long, but is going to go through whatever board you choose and still be able to secure to the wall. 

Drop Cloths - Depending on where you plan to do the staining of the wood, I'd definitely invest in a drop cloth or something to protect the floor of wherever the staining is happening.

Sand paper - we used a pretty fine sand paper

STEP THREE: Cut and sand the wood

The cutting part was Tyler's job.  I gave him measurements and told him which pieces were supposed to come out of each board and he went for it.

The sanding is really just so the wood will take the stain and you can remove any sharp edges.  I sanded off all sharp edges of my boards because that's the look I wanted.  I took a wet cloth to my boards afterwards just to remove some of the dust.  Sanding as many boards as I had took forever so I stopped for the day and came back to stain another day.

STEP FOUR: Stain the wood

Again I mixed one part Weathered Oak to three parts Early American and then generously applied the stain with a sponge to one board at a time going with the grain of the wood.  I let it sit for about 7 minutes and wiped it away with the grain of the wood.  I love how the knots in the wood absorbed more stain and really gave the wood some character.

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STEP FIVE: Find a really cute young thing to do the install for you.

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Just kidding.  But for real though, this could take a couple people depending on how much space you're covering.  We got ours lined up the way we wanted them, made sure they were level, and that we were screwing into a stud.  We also mounted ours down just enough to cover the mechanical part of the blinds.

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And that was it.  Now we have Fixer Upper worthy windows instead of ugly builder windows for way less than traditional window treatments would have ever cost.

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