Christmas Home Tour {part 1}


Today I’d like to share a few rooms of my house, all decorated for the holidays.  I got an early start this year. I dragged the bins out of our attic before Thanksgiving, so things have been decorated for a while now.  But I neglected to take pictures until this week.  Of course, I also waited until it was dark and rainy, thus making for poor lighting.  But thank goodness for a tripod!

If you were walking into my home, I would like to think I’d offer you a cup of coffee. Or something to warm you up. But we’re not coffee drinkers.  So you don’t want me making you a cup o’ joe!  But I’d probably offer you a diet coke or some water – with the option of ice or no ice {I always choose ice. It make a drink more fun.}

OK. On to the tour.

 First stop is the living room….P4870940

This bench isn’t typically behind the couch.  It’s originally from the entry, but last winter when we painted, I moved it over to the window in this room.  And now that we have a Christmas tree in that window, the poor bench has moved yet again.

The chalkboard above the fireplace is a recent addition to this room.  I was inspired by House Seven.  She has a similar one in her dining room that I fell in love with. So I buzzed over to Lowes and had them cut me a piece of plywood. I painted it, added some stained trim and the project was complete!


I ordered a really long strand of these micro lights on Amazon.  They were inexpensive {$15 for 33 feet}, and they are DIMMABLE!  So instead of being a bright light that hurts your eyes, I can dial it down to 10% and it gives off a nice glow.


And here is the tree.  We are at the stage of life when our tree has no theme.  The main idea with our tree is ‘anything goes’.  I add lights and red wooden berries. And the rest is a hodge podge of random ornaments.  One of which is an old Safeway receipt that Jack looped a piece of ribbon through.  It was the sweetest little ornament made by a toddler. So it still hangs on our tree all these years later.

I haven’t typically blogged much about the living room, because I didn’t love the room.  I was tired of the yellows walls and dark furniture. But we had our main floor painted this past winter.  And a few months ago, I had Dan help me switch the couches between the playroom and the living room. And I’m starting to love this room again! It’s so much brighter. And much more neutral, giving me more flexibility with my decorating.


The couch is from the Pottery Barn and it has been well loved.  The cushions have been jumped on. Slept on. Moved around. Thrown around. And they show the wear and tear.  But it’s a really comfortable couch, and I find that we sit in this room a lot more now.  And last week, we added this rug from Rugs USA.  It’s a nice added layer of texture to the space.

I typically display Christmas cards on a little metal wall hanging.  But this year, I added some twine to an old door that I have leaning against the wall instead.


Greens, ribbon and pinecones were added to the top of the door.  And when a card arrives in the mail,  we just attach it with a clothespin!


This year we took down our play set since the kids had {mostly} outgrown it.  But we kept the cute house part of it because it had too much character to get rid of. And if no one wants to play in it, we can use it for storage.  My mom had the idea to add a wreath to the door,  which I love!  I can look right out my kitchen window and see this!

The lights were leftover from summer.  So all we needed was the wreath, ribbon and rubber boots!



Thanks for reading!  Please come back tomorrow for a few more pictures of our home!


Christmas House Tour – Part 1

Happy Holidays, everyone!

Today I thought I’d show a few pictures of Christmas around my house.  I kept it simple this year.  And both Dan and I agree that it’s our favorite decor year yet!  Here are a few images around my house…..enjoy!

Since I have so many pictures, I’ve divided it into two parts. Today, let’s take a peek at part 1!

Simple tree wrapped in burlap

I wrapped a lot of little trees in burlap this year…


And some may argue that black ribbon is a bit unconventional, but I like it!

I just received this darling antler pillow from Kendra with So Vintage Chic. She runs a great store on Etsy.   I love her linen pillows.

antler pillow and blanket

antler pillow cable knit pillow

 We’re in the process of getting bids on having the main floor painted and mantel redone. But for now, we still have a yellow room….So I made the most of it with my mantel decorations.

merry and bright chalkboard mantel

What’s that? More burlap wrapped trees!?

I tore the covers off some books to give some texture and height to my candles.

candles and pinecones on torn books

And I layered my chalkboard on top of my old ceiling tin.  This was partially out of laziness, but I like how it looks!

MANTLE merry and bright chalkboard

Our front entry has a big vacant spot above our front door.  I recently purchased a deer head from Kirklands.  I’ve heard some funny comments about it, but I like him!  I added a wreath and ribbon for Christmas, which gives him a bit of color.

deer with antlers and wreath and bow


I have a lot more pictures to show you, so come back tomorrow to look at more of my Christmas decor (part 2)!



linking up to:

steward of design

Happy Fall! {and a peek at my fall decor}

Well, helloooo!  Did you miss me!?  I didn’t mean to take a sabbatical from my blog, but I guess summer got the best of me!

Fall is a favorite season for me – well, who am I kidding. I love all of the seasons.  But fall is a definite favorite.  Even though we’re still having warm weather here in the northwest, I dug out my fall decor.    So below, I’m sharing a few snapshots of some fall vignettes around my house!

First, the mantel.   I used some orange flowers and placed them in mismatched glass jars, then drew a simple pumpkin on the chalkboard.

Fall mantel - pumpkin chalkboard with gold frame

Fall mantel - orange flowers in vase

And in the entry, I did something similar since I had an extra bunch of flowers.


And in the kitchen, a lantern and fern combination.


This last one is my favorite fall vignette.  I love the neutral palette.  I picked the tray up a few weeks ago and really like the soft color against the dark finish on our table.


Now if only it would start feeling like fall!  I’m over this 70 and 80 degree weather (sorry, everyone!) But I’m a northwest girl at heart and am ready for some cooler temps.


My Mantel : Christmas 2013

When I decorate each year, I try not to look back at pictures of previous years. I like that it looks different each year.  This year, my mantel is simple.

And here it is…

christmas mantel 2013  at home in the northwest

The chunky gold frame came from a friend at a garage sale.  I added a piece of wood and turned it into a chalkboard.

Then I added the wreath and lit greens.

at home in the northwest mantel 2013  chalkboard frame with wreath


I didn’t even hang up our Christmas stockings! {Don’t tell the kids…I don’t think they’ve noticed yet that they aren’t up.}  I will bring them out, of course, for Santa’s arrival on the 24th.

So that’s it!  What about you!? What does your mantel look like this year?


linking up to:

ten june

Target Joy Sign Hack

Yes, this is a Christmas post.  And today, party pooper me took down all of my fall decor.  Maybe I should blame Target….

Like many of you, I recently received the Target ad showing the cute marquee ‘Joy’ sign.


via target

While we were out of town, the mail really stacked up. So when I saw the ad in my mail, I immediately got competitive. {For those of you who don’t know me well, I get competitive about the small things.  Not over a football or pickle ball game.  But over a parking spot. Or a place in line at the grocery store. Or a ‘must have’ darling tin marquee sign from Target.}  Anyway, I looked online…not available.   I looked at the two Targets here in town… was out of stock, the other was rather vague with their stock status.  So the kids and I buzzed out to Target last night, in the dark, to search for the sign.

And lucky me.  I got one!

But I confess when I opened up the box, it was kind of simple looking. And of course there was the cord.   I assumed it would stand on its own, but you have to hang them.  So I got to thinking….how could I make this work!

Off to the bin of scrap wood I went.  I found some red spray paint too.

And after a bit of working, I got just what I was looking for!

TARGET JOY HACK  at home in the northwest

Something more substantial. Something to prop up or hang on my porch, or over the mantel.

Something really fun! I love it!

If you’d like to do the same thing, here are the steps that I took:


Grab some wood from the scrap bin, or buy some from Lowes or Home Depot {they can even cut it for you!}

Decide how wide you would like your sign.  Line up the wood {I used paneling leftover from my bookshelf project}.  Then secure two pieces to the back, as shown here.

Target joy sign hack  how to build a sign  at home in the northwest


Spray paint the wood.


When it was {almost} dry {I was too antsy to wait til it was completely dry}, I sanded the edges a bit and added some wood stain over the entire piece. It gave the sign a bit of depth and interest. Then spray some nails since they will show when the sign is hung.

spray painted nails  target joy sign hack  at home in the northwest


Lastly, hang the letters and  you are done!

TARGET JOY HACK  at home in the northwest

Target Joy Sing Hack Closeup  at home in the northwest

I’m so excited to hang it up, though I will wait!  My fall decor may be in the attic, but I won’t dig out Christmas just yet {though believe me, I’m tempted!}

Thanks for reading and let me know if you make one of your own!! I’d love to see a picture.


linking up to:

coastal charm, cozy little house, my uncommon slice of suburbia, inside blucrew life, nap time creations, new nostalgia, home stories a to z, not just a housewife, cedar hill ranch, savvy southern style, life with the crust cut off, made to be a momma, Katherines Corner, no minimalist here, embracing change, liz marie blog, love grows wild

Family Room Before and After

Do you remember the hutch transformation that I shared with you back in May?  Today I’m going to show you the rest of the room!

My client moved into the house last fall and she needed help pulling the room together.

This is what it looked like when the house was purchased…

brick fireplace before

Before moving in, the room was painted a light gray color and the brick around the fireplace was painted white.


family room before 1

The furniture was already a good neutral color, so after they got settled in the house, I got to work!

The red hutch above was painted white and moved across the room.  And a few accessories were purchased to help style the shelves.


Curtains were hung and an end table, lamp and vase with flowers were added to the room…




after 6

Doesn’t it look great!?

Summer has gotten the best of me and my blogging has suffered!  Thanks for being patient as I am slow to produce new blog posts. I have lots of post ideas in my head….it’s just finding the time to get them written!!


Painted Fireplace Before and After

Several months ago, a friend and client of mine moved into a new house.  The fireplace needed a little facelift.

brick fireplace before

Before moving in, the walls were painted a light gray and the brick around the fireplace was painted white.

Here is the fireplace today!


Quite a jaw dropping difference!

Once again, the magic of paint amazes me!

Over the next week, I’ll be revealing a few other projects from this room as well.  So make sure you come back to check it out!


linking up to:


create with joy, i should be mopping the floor, home stories a to z, romance on a dime

Christmas Entry 2012

I always enjoy decorating the shelf in our entry. It’s much deeper than our mantel which gives me a lot more options when decorating!

Lately, I’ve left my old weathered window frame up there to hang wreaths from.  I change out the bow, depending on the season. Or the wreath if I have a season appropriate one.

Here is the view as you enter my house…

I didn’t realize that Elfy snuck into the picture below.  That sneaky little guy!

After decorating for Christmas this year, I realized I have an issue with lanterns…apparently I love them!  I counted 8 lanterns as I decorated. EIGHT! Doesn’t that seem a bit like overkill?! Maybe I need a lantern intervention. Even though it seemed like a lot, I did put all of them to use throughout my house and front porch….

The lanterns in my entry are filled with pine cones. The red bow at the top adds some needed color.

The cubbies are simple.  Very similar to my mantel….fresh greens from my yard with fake berries. And a candle for a little evening glow.

And on the bench sit a small collection of Christmas pillows. One of my favorites is the belted red santa pillow

I love how my entry ‘mantel’ turned out!  Very fresh and fun. Here’s one last look…


linking up to:

uncommon designs,  ten june, the lettered cottage, on sutton place, embracing change, its overflowing, home stories a to z, savvy southern style, a thoughtful place

Christmas Mantel 2012

We’re all decorated for Christmas in the Gilday household.  So today I’ll share my mantel with you. Over the next week or so, I’ll share the rest of our house.

It’s a fairly simple mantel this Christmas.

Remember the trees that I got on clearance last Christmas?  They made appearance on my mantel this year.  I love the height that they add.

And some fresh greens from my yard with pinecones and fake red berries are all laid at the base of the burlap wrapped trees….

Here are our hand knit stockings hanging from Pottery Barn stocking holders….

The stockings are stuffed with newspaper to give them some shape {which really threw my kids for a loop. They were sure that Santa paid us an early visit this year! Sorry to disappoint!} I also added some fresh greens sticking out of the top of the stockings…

I use a lot of fresh greens in my decorating. Click here for a more ideas about using fresh greens in your holiday decorating.

I’m happy with how my mantel turned out! I have more exciting holiday decor to show you later this week! So please come back!


linking up to:

the lettered cottage, ten june, uncommon designs, embracing change, its overflowing, home stories a to z, savvy southern style

Fall Shelves and Mantel

Last spring, my good friend Heidi asked me to update her mantel to reflect a lighter, spring feel.  This month, she asked me to help her transition it over to fall.  Heidi liked the look and feel of the existing shelves but wanted to warm it up for autumn.

Here is what the left side of the shelves looked like last spring…

And here it is all decorated for fall…

And now the right side of the shelves….

And here it is all ready for fall…

I know it’s difficult to see the details and changes in the pictures above. So let’s take a closer look at what it looked like last spring…

…and now the quick, simple update for spring….

{jars – Target for $5.99 and pine cones – Michaels for $3.99 a bag}

Next I simply swapped out flowers in a vase…

{orange flowers – Pier 1 for $8 a stem}

And swapping out a vase with rocks and an orchid for a wire pumpkin and candle…

Very little changed with this decor update.  The overall placement of the items stayed the same.  We simply switched out a few spring items for fall items,  added some pumpkins and gourds, and an entirely new look was achieved.

Have you made any updates to your shelves or mantels this fall?


linking up to:

fox hollow cottage, the  inspired room, home stories a to z

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