Thursday, January 2, 2014

THIS is the year

Hey hey! I’m writing today from under six inches of snow – with absolutely FRIGID temps coming next week. We’re talking feels like negative 50 degrees in Indiana. What?? So serious question here – what do you do with a Chihuahua dog who hates the cold already in those kind of temps? I mean, that’s not safe for a person, let alone an animal. We’re trying to figure out what the heck we’ll do to take him out?

Anyway, other than the insanely cold temps, I actually quite LOVE this time of year. It’s one of my favorite times really – it’s a new year and everything feels fresh and new and full of possibility. And I fall in love with my house all over again right about now. I get giddy with all the plans in my head.

I can even stand the cooler temps for about another four weeks. I love being warm and cozy in our house…till about mid-February. Then I’m D.O.N.E.

It’s funny because we’ve been in this house almost ten years and I still have a list a mile long of things I’d like to do. A couple of them are dream projects that I would need help with, but most I can do on my own. And that’s why my head feels like it may explode in early January – my list is long. Let’s talk about future plans shall we?

THIS will be the year that I finish painting all the doors black in the house:

black interior doors

The basement doors are done (well, one more door to go to the storage room) and I LOVE THEM. It is a long process because I’ll have to prime every door, but the end result is worth it. (You can see my latest black door here.)

There are two rooms in our house that are a pain in my rear. I can’t figure out a good set up for either one – the loft/former playroom/craft room is one:

loft craft room

My plan for years now has been to build in storage and a window seat along that wall with the window. I keep saying “this is the year!” and it’s never the year…but maybe this one will be the year. We’ll see.

That room is HARD because it basically has one usable wall. The wall with the windows isn’t really functional, the other wall is a half wall and then it’s open on the other side. I want tons of craft storage but also want to make it a bit more of a lounge space again. We don’t really NEED another lounge space but we’d use it more if it was one. It drives me batty not to make good use of a space so I want to make this room more functional this year.

The other room that gives me fits is our living room. Again, with only one useable wall:

sisal rug

At least one of you noticed in the Christmas tree post that I took the drapes down. You’re good! I’m planning a big DIY project on those windows – I wanted to try and tackle it in the month of December and then got my brain function back and realized this year may be better. :)

A few months ago I made a decision about this space. I’ve hated the sofa for seven plus years and I decided I’m 38 years old dangit and if I hate it I’m not going to keep it. I find it hard to replace something that’s functional but not my favorite thing – I feel guilty, like I shouldn’t spend on something when we have something that technically works just fine, you know? But I think I’ve found a really inexpensive option for this room, I just need to go test it out first.

Of course I will continue my record of taking years to finish a space – this time in the mud room. It’s been half way done for two years now:

I shared the latest paint and floor updates to the room earlier this week. I was planning on taking a trip out to Lowe’s today to start the bench but it may not happen with the snow.

I’ve had BIG plans in mind for our kitchen for years now – and yes it involves painting the cabinets. I know there are so many that love wood cabinets and I do too – but ours have some major wear and tear and there’s nothing we can do to fix it, other than sanding them down and restaining. That’s not happening. So, I have little plans that turned into bigger plans and those bigger plans are what are holding be back from starting the whole thing:

chalkboard in kitchen

But I think I can move ahead with most of it so I’m determined to make that happen this year. I can see it all in my head – it’s been sitting in there for a while now. ;)

The master bedroom redo will continue this year and when I say continue I hope I mean finish:

DIY headboard

There’s only one wall painted (it’s been like that since the summer) and I need to get going on that. The bed will get new pillows (most likely a DIY if I can find the right fabric), the bed wall may get some kind of special treatment and sometime this year I’d like to get new floors in there. The carpet is DONE.

Another project I’ve almost started numerous times is painting the family room and kitchen:

blue gray rug

Our current wall color is Sisal from Ralph Lauren (one of the top questions I get her on the blog) and we’ve had it up since the day we closed on the house. I came over with the brand new keys and paint and worked for hours on it. :) I’ve been planning something a bit lighter, but then I see a dark, cozy color and fall in love with that again. So we’ll see.

I’m also contemplating a large built in unit where our entertainment “dresser” currently sits:

dresser as entertainment center

I’m pretty sure I think I’m five people instead of one, cause I don’t know how this girl (who works like molasses) will be able to accomplish all of this in a year, but it’s fun to daydream, right? I’m hoping to get most of it done!

AND I told my husband the other day that THIS is the year our closet will become a spotless, organized, magical place where stars burst out of your eyes when you walk in. If you could see it you’d know why he laughed and laughed and…laughed some more at me. But it will happen. You can’t see the before pictures though – not until I clean it and even then you’ll be mortified. And when I say that I’m so not being all, oh it’s kind of messy and I’m acting like it’s horrible. NO. It’s horrible. So, there’s that to look forward to. ;)

So do you love this time of year as much as I do? Do you have any fun plans for your home, or at least ones you daydream in your head? Any organization projects you want to tackle? Do tell!

I’ll be back next week and back to a regular posting schedule! Have a great weekend and stay safe if you are getting this weather too!

59 comments:

  1. Sounds like super fabulous plans for the whole house and I can't wait to see them all. I am planning and saving for some hardwood floors. That is going to be my biggie. Hugs, Marty

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  2. Crikey it is cold....your dog needs a really thick onesie.....I'm sure you will find one on ebay!!
    Happy New Year.

    http://vodkaandarose.blogspot.co.uk

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  3. You can buy those squares of sod grass and a tray to put them in... Then you can keep those in your laundry room/mud room =)

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  4. Hey, I wanted to let you know I absolutely love your gorgeous photos - and I also want to invite you to join Indy Social Media Moms! I am the founder, and we'd love to have you. You can learn more about us on our website at www.IndySocialMediaMoms.com.

    Happy New Year!

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  5. we let our pup out under the car port when the snow is this bad..... but I've also followed him out with an umbrella and a shovel before. lol.

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  6. Poor pups. I am no help as we have cats. Maybe put a little sweater on him that leaves certain areas exposed? Doggy leg warmers? That would be so cute!
    I am excited to see what you accomplish this year. I sure do wish I lived closer to you so when you decide to get rid of some items I could snatch them up.
    I too have a ton of plans for our home but we are working on becoming debt free. If everything goes as planned and murphy stays away, we should only have our mortgage left by August. Yay!! So most of my want tos will have to wait until then. Till then, I will live vicariously through you.

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    1. Good for you Vee...are you doing Dave Ramsey? My husband and I loved that class so much, we took it twice, and now are planning to teach it at our church, probably beginning in February!

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  7. I love that you have projects yet to do when you've been in your home for over ten years. Same here - about 11 years and although I've completed so much this year and blogged about it, I always have projects left to do. But like your previous commenter, it's no nice to lower my debt, too. Thus, the never-ending saga of do a project/pay-off bills. I'm trying to not incur new debt with new projects and that is the reason why we never finish a room! ha - our circle of life. Have a great 2014!

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  8. We have a Datsun mix that is about to have the same winter issues as your chihuahua. I have a little shovel that I use to clear him a space. With the temps dropping to the negatives this week I'll be sending him out with a coat and possibly paw boots. I don't like them, but I worry it may be too cold for his pads.

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    1. Yes we shovel too -- it does help! I'm just so concerned about the cold -- the boots may be a good idea, even though he'll hate them!! :)

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  9. My dachie hated cold too. I'd shovel a path to about 3 foot into the yard and she would run out and do her business. She learned to go FAST...none of the watching the grass grow business like in the summer. When she came in, she'd have a warm towel in her bed and a treat waiting.

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  10. I feel your pain with the cold. It was -16F this morning at 8am (I am in western WI). By Monday, the high is supposed to be -15F with 25 mph WNW winds. I don't know what to do with the dogs either. I have two. Their poor feet get so cold. My one pooch is 12 yrs old (small sheltie) and the other is an 8 yr old King Charles Cavalier Spaniel.

    You have big plans for your home!! Always good to have. It will be fun to see what you can accomplish. I have a HUGE long list. We have been in our house 9.5 yrs, almost. New carpet upstairs, redo our master bath, hardwood on the main level. Would love to finish the basement. Though realistically, I would be happy with finishing the laundry room, deck and my son's room. We also have to tear up the front part of the driveway by the garage. It is sinking. I think we are going to have a concrete apron poured. That is a must this spring. Hoping this tax season will be good to us. :)

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  11. I love your house and all your ideas!

    We just completed a bookcase to finish our half-wall. We put resin screens on the back side so nothing falls into the stair well but it still lets light in. It's totally made the area usable as my new workspace! I think it would be great in the loft!

    I can't wait to see all your transformations! Happy New Year!

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  12. You sound just like me. A million projects started but not finished. They're so close, but then I get bored or I can't find that thing that is needed to finish them. Looking forward to your finished projects. Note my optimistic tone;)

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  13. Can't wait to see what you dazzle us with this year, Sarah! I know you won't disappoint! Frigid here too, making it highly difficult to get motivated (especially since the kids are still on Christmas break!). Definitely itching to get my house back in order! The holidays have taken their toll!

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  14. Snow and cold here too!! Love all your ideas! We are planning on a kitchen make-over! :)

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  15. we had friends who had a chihuahua, lived in florida, moved back to iowa-their dog about went on strike. they trained him to go on puppy pads in the winter, in a mud room. it worked for them.

    i love your bedding!

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  16. You are ambitious that is for sure! We've been in our house for almost 22 years now and I am ready to make some changes as well. Now, if I could just win the lottery! LOL
    We get cold temps, but not like yours and it RARELY snows. But, our little Cairn has several jackets/sweaters/raincoats for when the weather is nasty. She really doesn't mind them. Boots in the snow are a must. He'll get used to them. It is hard though because they usually have to pick up a "scent" before they will go (hard to do in a foot of snow).

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  17. The most I like the idea of a photo five :)
    I like the old style even a little run down :)

    The chairs are really great

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  18. Chihuahuas can be litter box trained. Purina makes a special litter for dogs called Second Nature. Both of my chihuahuas are trained and it is wonderful in the winter months because they don't have to go outside. My second chihuahua is a male that I got at the age of 2. It took a little longer to train him, but well worth it!

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  19. I'm sure you already have a plan to get all of these great project complete, but perhaps you could incorporate some monthly resolutions.... (Have you ever read the Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin? You remind me of her in such a fun, upbeat way.)
    1 Month, tackle a major project. The next month, tackle the minor DIY that you do so well (or even the paper clutter that you have mentioned once... maybe twice) ;) Then the next month, another large project. And so on and so forth. Either way, I'm sure you'll do what works best and you'll do a great job!! Just wanted to provide some friendly feedback, thank you for all the great posts and good luck!!

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  20. Those are some cold temps! Stay safe! We have lots planned for our house this year; well, I do. The hubby just comes along for the ride :)
    Our living room only has 1 and a half usable walls and our family room only 1 usable wall (and it isn't even a full wall). It really makes decorating and arranging furniture a challenge.
    Excited to see some of the great things you do this year!

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  21. Goodness, you inspire me SO MUCH! One of my resolutions for this year is to really dig into some DIY projects at home, big and small (mostly small at first!)!

    Thanks for the fun and beautiful ideas!

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  22. It is Summer here in New Zealand, but I am so jealous, I have always, and I mean ALWAYS wanted this time of year to be winter!!! We are finally moving into our brand New home at the end of this month .. and Sarah you provide me with sooooooooo many ideas of what to do.... we haven't even moved yet and my husband is shaking his head at all my ideas.... and I can't WAIT :)

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  23. We have two pit bulls who HATE going out in the snow because they can't stand getting their paws wet. Our snow is coming tonight, it should be fun tomorrow. I just went through the same thing with my sofa and love seat in our living room. I donated them and got a new sofa that I love. It changes the whole look of our living room and I love it. I am 63 and just retired so I have a large list of things I want done. We will be starting our kitchen this month.

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  24. Yes, I love a new year full of lists, ideas, and fun! And your words about ditching your couch are making me feel so much better - I totally want to ditch a couch I hate that was expensive and in great condition, but I hate it! Off to shop...

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  25. We all have that list that we dread finishing even though we love to dream about what the end result will be! I really like the black doors and I think I might have to do it in our next home! We are looking to buy in March. I feel your pain with the snow...I am in northern Ohio. It sucks!

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  26. This post made my day. I have really been struggling with posting my home tour because I have so many half finished projects! You have inspired me to stop being so perfect because I know I will never achieve it and just post my half finished projects anyways. Thank you!!

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  27. I just moved into my first house in September and it's...good for now. It's basically a clean slate, and I have NO CLUE what to do with it. I did nothing today and sat on the couch and watched DIY YouTube videos, read a ton of thrifty, DIY blogs, etc. A few projects I have in mind are to redo the tile around our mantle (no clue how to do that, hello YouTube, again!) and we're currently sleeping on a mattress on the floor so I'm going to tackle a king size bed, or maybe just try to copy that headboard you made :) Thanks for the inspiration so close (I'm in Noblesville, just moved from Carmel -- one of your hubby's band students, too. Small world!)

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  28. I live in Wisconsin TDC, My terrier HATES it right now. -50 wind chill on tap for tomorrow. (No lie). I tried the 'Muttlucks' for him... he pranced around like a horse for 5 minutes and focused more on that than relieving himself... making him even colder. Here is what I KNOW works: Get a whole bunch a kick-butt doggy treats that you know he will like. As soon as he does what you want and he comes back in; REWARD HIM with the snack! He will catch on immediately. Positive reinforcement. Note: Be prepared to go out and rescue him. My little guy is out there for sometimes less than a minute and can't walk back up the sidewalk...I have to run out in my slippers to get the little lover. Stay warm! From one cooped up mama to another! ;-)

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  29. We have trouble with our little dogs in the snow also and have found puppy pads and newspaper in the garage to be the best answer. Tried making them go outside even in a shoveled space but they look so pathetic and don't do the job. Garage is the compromise - keeps mess and odor out of the house and 'accidents' away from my rugs. Oh and right back outside as soon as the worst of the frigid weather passes!

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  30. We have 3 chi's...2 teacups and one regular chihuahua...they love the snow! We let them out to play in the snow, with coats on, if it isn't too cold. Already a couple of times this winter it has been too cold for me to let them out, coat or not, so I had to resort to puppy pads. That one thing that looks like a grass patch is just messy and nasty, cause you got to hose it down. Not for me...pads are easier to pick up and toss. If I would have been smart enough, I say this every year, I would have brought in a real patch of grass. Next week should be a treat for us all here in Indy...*not looking forward to it at all!*

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  31. Oh my god I love snow but not THAT much. I can so relate to you. I have so many plans for my home too but they are still in my head...hope to make them come true this year. #fingerscrossed

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  32. Hi Sarah, Hope you get it sorted out about the dogs! I'm in the Atlanta area and it's not too cold for my pooches to go outside and get their business done. Nonetheless, this isn't my favorite time of year, actually, but I think it's great that you love it. I already feel like you will in February so I'm ready for winter to be over and it's just started, lol. Thanks for your inspirational blog!

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  33. My friend had a tiny babe that used a fake grass mat for daily needs. No clue how she trained her, but given the cold and depth of snow, it may be worth trying. Or a small cleared walkway close to the door where a spot of grass is. Another has one as a service dog, he gets so cold. She carries him in a sling pack against her chest in the winter. I feel bad for the big dogs, the little guys must really have it tough.

    In a different area, but it is cold too. I wish we had the snow, our temps really warm up with a good snow storm and snow doesn't usually last long even in feets. We desperately need snow for water resources.

    I did get everything needed to work on projects prior to winter setting in, plus more. The idea of painted kitchen cabinets crossed my mind a dozen times, but am not as young as once was and am afraid I either couldn't finish or would do a rotten job. They really aren't bad, just don't like them. Am half way there with a new counter and backsplash. Not into open shelving, but taken half of them away and using free standing furniture, so much more storage...painting furniture comes out fine.

    As with you, the entire house needs a new coat of paint. It isn't worn looking, I just know it is time and love the smell of a newly painted home. Am tired of beige and gray, heading to linen with white trim. And maybe I'll get brave with doors or a couple walls of color. I am changing out all the door hardware for black, my decor is rustic/minimal accents.

    Then comes a bunch of lists as you. I just need to get the big stuff done to see a different arena. Once started they don't take that long, but the couch and a blanket keeps calling me with the cold outdoors.

    Love the white chair in the living room. And I also love the little craft room, it has so much potential and appears to have good natural light. Will follow on as you create. Perhaps keep me in line for doing so.

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  34. I love your style! And I mean how you jump around the house from thing to thing! :) I do the same thing, but never quite get done enough with a project to photograph it and blog about it. Or sometimes I finish something, then I'm too lazy to blog about it, ha! I'll blame two little boys on that.
    Anyway, your blog is fantastic, and reading this post has really inspired me to get back in the saddle with my blog.
    Good luck this year! I know your projects will be great, and your writing will always be entertaining.

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  35. Ok, so I "occassionaly" (your sp) comment on blogs, but here goes: Do the entertainment center first and get those electronics off the dusty floor because dust is Terrible for those dvd players, set top boxes, etc. The dust floats into the heat vent holes and messes up the connections inside. Your floors aren't very dusty at all, but any floor has more dust than a shelf. Especially with animals in the house.

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  36. Love your house! My to do list starts with better set-up for home office and adding photos to living room wall.

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  37. Hahaha...that is really funny. I mean about the closets.

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  38. That's an impressive list...I'll be using my 2013 goals for 2014. If you're molasses, I'm tar.

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  39. Loving all your home updates! We are under 6 inches of snow too and expecting more tomorrow! EEK!

    Kayla
    www.lovelucygirl.com

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  40. That is some plan you have for the year! I'm inspired by how things look now. We are in a rental, so no paint or flooring changes for us. But I am thinking some kind of prettied up window treatments and brighter bedding might be a welcome change for the New Year.

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  41. You've inspired me to actually write down and photograph what I want to do this year! I've been working on painting all of my 60's trim and doors white. HUGE undertaking, but it's progressing!

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  42. We are having spring-like weather here in Arizona. Windows are open letting in the fresh air. I confess I wouldn't mind a little cold and snow just to make it feel like winter but overall, I do love it.

    Looking forward to seeing the changes you make in your home. Btw, how did you learn to do these things?

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  43. " I find it hard to replace something that’s functional but not my favorite thing – I feel guilty, like I shouldn’t spend on something when we have something that technically works just fine, you know? " YES ! THIS IS ME! I'm frugal so I really feel like i need a reason to buy something new when I have something already that is working even if I hate it. Ugh.

    Also, we have two small shih tzus and I've found they can''t do #1 and #2 in the same trip outside. I let them out to pee fast first. Then after a while when they've warmed up again, I let them out and hope they poo. One of them likes to eat it..so I sometimes have to go out with them, and I sort of stalk them with the scooper and than encourages them to go go go. Sometimes it doesn't work and we have to come back inside, warm up and try again. It's annoying, but they do get it done eventually. Hopefully your little dog is smarter than mine and will just go out, do the work and come back in :)

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  44. I love your house. I want this to be my year to finish all my unfinished project.

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  45. I'm *determined* to get crown molding in our living room area. I've wanted it since we moved in (7+ years ago) and last year for Christmas my inlaws did new base and crown molding in the dining room for me. This is something I think I'd like to do by myself. . .just to see how it goes. And you've inspired me so much with your library that I'd like to make a library wall in our living room too. . .again, something I've been mentioning since you did yours. . .so, well see :)
    Have a fabulous new year!!! Can't wait to see your 2014 progress!

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  46. Your place is absolutely stunning! Love the black doors in your basement. What a fantastic idea!

    Jackie
    jaclyncolville.com

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  47. Built-ins are a great idea in that space! We built some last year and love them!
    What are you planning for your LR windows? I design and fabricate window treatments, so I'm curious about everyone's ideas for that!

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  48. I came across your blog and love it. I am new to the blogging and design world. I am obsessed with decorating and so excited to see there are others like me! The black doors with white trim is a great idea. And I feel your pain about the playroom/craft room lay out. I have a study off of my living room that I have never felt like I got quite right with furniture layout or even function. I love your house and all you do! And I feel you on the cold front, I am in Wisconsin and am shocked by this cold. I also have a little dog who looked at me like I was crazy when I opened the door for him to go potty. Poor guy

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  49. I'm so with you about feeling guilty for wanting to replace something that is perfectly functional but is not something you love. As my tastes change, there are so many pieces I would like to switch out but while I'm taking a couple years off work to volunteer, the budget just isn't there!

    We actually built our current house because our last house was perfectly fine, but it just wasn't us, and it didn't really make sense to change things there.

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  50. I just found your blog and am really loving it! Your posts on crown molding are extremely informative and hilarious! I love your style as well! We are hopefully (fingers crossed!) closing on our first house January 31st and I'm drawing a lot of inspiration from your projects and decorating style! Thanks again, I look forward to reading more posts!

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  51. It makes me feel so much better knowing there are other people out there with big ideas for their homes, but not always enough time to get the projects done. I especially love your hope for a clean closet in 2014 - this is one of the biggest bug-bears in my house too! Your decorating style is a great inspiration, fantastic blog :)

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  52. Quick question! Is your front door the same graphite color as your interior doors?

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  53. I absolutely love your living room drapes. If you ever want to sell them, I would love to buy them.

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    1. Send me an email and I'll let you know if I decide to! :)

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