Tuesday, September 30, 2014

{four}

My sweet boy is four years old today! The years fly by quicker and quicker every year. I started the tradition 4 years ago of writing my boy a letter/blog post on his birthday so I must carry on....I hope someday he will read all his letters and know how special and loved he is and will always be.


Sweet boy, words can't describe the amount of JOY you bring to our lives. The past 4 years have just flown by you've gone from a chubby baby into a little boy overnight. As much as we miss that little baby boy, we just love and adore the little person you are today. These days you have an opinion about just about everything. You love doing things "all by yourself"....yet you still ask for help from time to time. You are independent, smart, giggle-y, tender-hearted, yet rough and tumble. You make everyone feel like they are the most loved person in the world...."the best". You never meet a stranger. I hope this personality trait stays with you forever. You have a gift of making everyone feel like your best friend even if you've never met them before. You love BIG. 

Your favorite activities are riding your bike and scooter around the driveway (I always have to draw you a race track with sidewalk chalk), playing with your cars and batman figures, stroller rides (walks), reading books, going to the park and having a picnic, cutting out shapes with scissors, playing nerf guns, digging in the dirt with your tonka trucks, "just looking" in the toy aisles, wrestling with daddy, and watching your favorite cartoons when you first wake up in the morning. You are pretty predicable. Your favorite foods are jelly sandwiches, spaghetti, pizza, applesauce, and your favorite sweet treats are oreos, donuts, and gummy bears. Oh and I can't forget your beloved sippy cups- you still LOVE apple juice. 


Our favorite things you say are:
 "I don't know any sing (thing)."
 "I got-for (forgot) them" 
"I love you Momma Dadda, I love you all"
"for ages...." (a long time ago...)
"today is a perfect day for..... (fill in the blank) usually it's going to the park, putt-putt golfing, going for a walk."
"wish I could have a (fill in with nearly any animal)....guinea pig, fish, dog, cat,"

You often refer to people in third person: "Her likes going to the zoo" 

You and daddy have dozens of funny/quirky little sayings: "peace out girl scout" (when you are are doing boy things), "show chow" (shower), "corn diggers" (corn dogs), "nugga-nugga" (when you rub noses like Daniel tiger)

You lead prayer at night time and you've gotten really good at doing the sign of the cross by yourself. 

You are dreamer- you are always wishing for SOMETHING. And you love to talk....you are rarely, if ever quiet. Same goes for moving....you are never still. You love running, jumping, dancing, wrestling. You love making others laugh by doing funny faces or doing a silly dance. On the other  hand, you still love "snuggle-buggin" (snuggling) with momma or dadda and you will climb up on my lap nearly any chance you get.You give lots of hugs and kisses to us. You still carry around your snuggie (blankie) and teddy (bear). 

You take occasional naps, we usually go for late afternoon walks which make you very sleepy. Mommy can barely carry you inside because you are sooo big and heavy these days. You weigh about 40 lbs. You don't like bugs, going to bed at night, or saying goodbye to anyone. 



Most importantly, you are the most special being daddy and I have ever known. We still find ourselves (I'm sure we will do this for the rest of our lives...) asking how we got so lucky to be your parents! You are our greatest gift. Your light shines bright for everyone who knows you. It's such a joy watching you grow up. I know you are going to make such a great big brother next year, you are going to be my little helper. I pray you always know how much you are loved by the Lord. Love you more than words can describe. 

forever and always,
momma

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

{chairish basement bar & man cave design board}





I was recently invited to collaborate with Chairish.com to design a home bar based off a set of barstools they offer online. I selected the Zuo Era Twin Peaks Bar Stools which are only $525 for a set of 4. They have a cool, industrial look to them which I instantly loved. I mixed the industrial stools with framed vintage map prints, warm brass & bronze lighting, rich leather club chairs, and autumn inspired accent colors to create a stylish basement "man cave" and home bar design perfectly cozy for curling up and watching your favorite football team play on the big screen this fall. 






Friday, September 19, 2014

{little boy bedroom}

Happy Friday!

I hope y'all are enjoying your day! Just dropping in to share photos of my son's "little boy" bedroom. I'm not quite ready to call it a "big boy" bedroom because he is only 3 years old *almost* 4 and I really wanted his bedroom to reflect this fun stage of his life. 

I didn't spend hours on his design board like I do my normal design clients...but rather just kind of collected together my ideas for his room on paper. His room definitely has more of an eclectic feel than what I normally use in my own home, but I think it works perfect for him. Nothing in his room is too precious to touch....actually the most expensive thing in his whole room is the mattress he sleeps on if that tells you anything about the budget for his room. I stuck with lots of antique/distressed furniture and used his toys as his "accessories". We still have a few more projects planned for his room....new carpeting, woven blinds, bed skirt, a total closet makeover....but I figured I'd better share what photos I do have with y'all right now before I get busy with baby #2's nursery design plans. 



His design board was translated pretty loosely, as I changed a few elements as I went along with the design. The gray wash stand I found at an estate sale- its perfectly imperfect. As is the green stand I found for the other end his bed- chippy paint is perfect for little people. The more they bang it up...the better it looks! The lamps were Target clearance last year, you can't see it very well in the photo but the inside of the shades are lined in red check plaid. I love little surprise details. The red wagon and toy tractor came from C's great grandparents. 






His bed is one of my favorite design elements. It was a craigslist score I found last fall. I considered painting it...but I'm so glad I left it as is. I ended up finding the two chippy painted stands to use as his bed side tables and I think if I had painted the bed it would have been too many painted pieces, the wood stain adds some warmth to the room which is really nice. 


His bedding is a collection of pieces I rounded up over time. It's my favorite way to put together a one-of-a-kind look. The buffalo check is Ikea, Polka Dot Chenille Quilt is Country Door, the Dinosaur sheets are from Target, Orange pillows came from HomeGoods, and the other two pillows I sewed up with leftover fabric. 






His bookshelf was a cheap garage sale find. It holds just a *portion* of his books and some of his favorite toys. I made his canvas growth chart back when we lived in Texas (I'm pretty sure I blogged about it way back when...) I can't believe how much my little guy has grown since then! He absolutely loves to puff out his chest and stand by his growth chart to see if he has grown any since the last time we measured him...


Mr. Cattlebuyer and I painted the piggy bank when I was pregnant 4 years ago. The colors went with his nursery design...but it's such a special piece I can't bare to put it away. We plan on going to the same ceramic painting place to make the new baby a piggy bank very soon! 



The dresser is actually from his nusery design I did nearly 4 years ago. I think we will probably change it out eventually...or give it to the new baby but for now it works. The Johnny Cash record albums came from an antique store....I thought they were quite fitting. The big John Deere tractor was passed on from his great grandpa Jim. He was an avid toy tractor collector and when he passed away we picked out a few special pieces to give to our little guy.




The drapes were very budget friendly :) I made them with drop cloth material and some ticking stripe fabric I found at Hancock Fabrics. They were surprisingly easy to make and I think they make the room feel so much bigger! We also painted his walls, trim and ceiling last spring. The walls are Benjamin Moore, Gray Owl, which is a nice blue/gray color. 



I will post the before pictures next week so you can get an idea for how the room has been transformed! 

Hope y'all have a great weekend!



Friday, September 12, 2014

{project updates}

Happy Friday! 

I don't know about your part of the country, but in the Midwest it sure feels like FALL this week! The rain showers and cooler temps have been wonderful for staying inside, working, and gettin' stuff crossed off the ol' to-do list! Thank goodness, whatever energy I lacked in the 1st trimester I am definitely making up for in the 2nd. I have design boards galore as well as wrapping up some projects around my own house. I'm also working on a special design collaboration with Chairish. Chairish is the world's first online consignment marketplace for design-obsessed people to buy and sell their home furnishings. It's such a neat concept...you should definitely check out their website. I'll have more information in the next few weeks. 

Sharing a few new and old projects today. I recently completed my first commercial design project. I worked with a local couple in designing and updating their chiropractic clinic reception room and front desk area. This was such a fun project and really pushed me design-wise to get outside of my little residential design box. I'm looking forward to taking on more commercial design projects! 



I don't usually share "before" pictures but I think I should start doing it more often so y'all can get a feel for what the space is like in real life. Hoping to share with you some awesome "after" photo's once my clients have everything installed! 

Before Pictures:





This was just a quick elevation style mock-up of the plan for the new children's play area. We are cleaning up the floor space and adding more wall based activities. If at any time my clients need a little better "visual" I am always quick to create a photoshop mock up. Magnetic board on the left, new book racks on the right. 






I also never share the hand drawn floor plans I create for each and every e-design project I take on. These are a little time consuming, but (like the photoshop mock -ups) are such a great tool to convey my design plans with my clients. 




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The next project is one that has taken place at my house. The "little boy" bedroom design plans for my son's room. I'm so close to being finished with this project- just need to add a few finishing touches and I'm going to call it done (not that a designer ever calls a personal project "done"....we are always tweaking things!)! This room really took on an eclectic feel with old antiques, some new pieces, and lots of fun patterns! I really tried to stay away from building a "themed" boy bedroom. I get bored with rooms that scream a specific "theme". I much prefer rooms that reflect their inhabitant, in this case a little boy-- so lots of dinosaurs, tractors, children's books!




Here is a little sneak peek of his room, whenever the sun decides to come out I will take some portfolio worthy photos. I have some really good before pictures of this space too...so you can see what a big transformation this room underwent!


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This was a new e-design question project that we had to change up the artwork for since the original artwork I sourced was discontinued (boo!). Every once in a while that happens when your dealing with e-design...but it seems like I always find something even better than before. I'm really loving this new abstract piece! 



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This was also an older design project I worked on last winter. My wonderful clients recently sent me some new portfolio pictures to share with y'all. I just adore how this design board translated into real life.




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I hope to have more project updates to share with you very soon! Meanwhile, I feel it's my civic duty (I have no idea why...I just love sharing good deals!) to share with y'all that zulily has a great sale going on again! Mason Cash is one of their featured shops. I love this England based kitchenware brand. Their pieces are as gorgeous as they are functional. I'd much rather buy a new set of lamps or a rug than kitchenware most days, but I have to say, this brand is an exception to my usual way of thinking! The zulily pricing is awesome, any of these would make amazing Christmas gifts for the baker in your family.

Gingerbread Man Baking Set
Stoneware Batter Bowl

4.25-Qt. Heritage Cane Mixing Bowl
0.75-Qt. Cane Round Baker



Here is an invite if you guys haven't signed up for zulily yet! 

Copy and Paste this link:

http://www.zulily.com/invite/moderngracedesigns


Enjoy your weekend friends!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

{summer 2014}


I hope you all enjoyed your long Labor Day weekend. I had a few minutes to drop in this afternoon so I thought I'd share some family photos from my instagram account. It seems to be the only way I document anything anymore. Anyways, we had such a fun summer this year! It wasn't filled with any major excursions but just lots of little happy memories. After the past few summers we've had (last year in particular...with our crazy house hunt!) it was really nice to have a stress-free summer to relax & enjoy. Mr. Cattlebuyer went on a weekend fishing trip, but other than that and few short weekend roadtrips we were home all summer.

We did lots of lounging especially May and June (1st trimester = no energy). Not that I really mind, I love when my little man will just sit and chat about important 3 year old things....batman, race cars, animals, popsicles, ect.

(As you can see, teddy (bear) and snuggie (blankie) are still a part of our daily lives. They are the last little bit of babyhood memorabilia he still hangs on too, so I am okay with him hanging on to them as long as he likes! :))




We took our little guy to his first move theater experience, Planes Fire & Rescue. It went well for the first hour- the last 1/2 hour he lost interest. Luckily our little small town theater wasn't busy so it was no big deal. 



Summer just isn't summer without a plastic baby pool. We spent quite a few afternoons in the back yard splashing around. I think we both actually preferred this pool to the water park (for the record I did not get in the pool....just my feet on the edge ;)) 


We celebrated the 4th of July with a neighborhood block party. It was fun meeting some of the neighbors we hadn't met yet and of course C loved playing with all the kiddos! 


We visited the local county fair. I think we picked the hottest day of the year to go....it was absolutely awful outside, but we tried to make the most of it by visiting the livestock, going on few rides and rewarding ourselves with large snowcones afterwards. 


We also spent a weekend at a local lake celebrating a friend's birthday. 


Our newest addition to the backyard is a tree swing. We talked about putting up a playset, but just never got around to it so I decided half-way through the summer to order a tree swing instead. Honestly, it's so much better than a normal tree or tire swing because adults can ride on this swing too! We put it one of our big oak trees and it's the perfect shady spot to swing and lounge. I found it on amazon for anyone interested in ordering one for themselves...it is awesome. Your kiddos will LOVE it. 


We also purchased our first new piece of baby gear. I found a 2013 baby jogger, city versa online for a steal so I scooped it up (they are changing the logo and the buckle for 2014 so they have the "old" models on major sale right now). We are HARD on strollers in our house (we go for 2 walks a day spring-fall) so I knew I needed something a little above your typical graco travel system stroller. This guy will be our new workhorse for next spring...can't wait to try it out with baby #2! 


In baby news- the bump is growing! I actually took this picture this morning...I swear it doubled over night. So thankful for a healthy pregnancy! 


We ended our summer with a family baptism. We became sponsors over the weekend for our new nephew, Wyatt, who was born in July. It's always an honor. Mr.Cattlebuyer and I snapped a selfie...haha, it took us a few times before we got one that worked :) 



That about wraps it up....so long summer 2014, you sure have been fun!



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