October 19, 2016

Home Tour with Joybird Furniture!

Just wanted to let you guys know about a fun home tour that Todd and I did with Joybird furniture a few weeks ago that’s up on their site now! We have two of their sofas that we just love (the Braxton and the Hopson) so we were happy to share how we feature them in our home. I’m rather used to being in photos but video is a whole different ballgame for me so when they said they wanted to film the tour I was just hoping I could make it through without looking too much like a moron. Thankfully it actually came out really cute and I love the final clips. It was also fun to get to do something with Todd since we usually are working on separate projects most of the time, but he makes everything more enjoyable if you ask me….Check out the video if you get a chance, I think it will be a really fun one to look back on someday for sure!signature2 copy

October 18, 2016

Adjusting After Tour (a.k.a. I Can’t Live With or Without You)

So, you’ve been waiting either days, weeks, or months for your partner in crime to finally come back from road life and spend a bit of time at home. You’ve dreamt of romantic picnics by a lake, riding horses through fields in slow motion, and sounds of “I love you more” and “no, I love you more” ringing through the halls….but…that’s not always quite what happens, is it? I think with most touring families there’s some sort of mathematical equation that says the longer he’s been away, the longer it takes to get your “couple’s rhythm” back after the tour is over. I mean, practically speaking, you’ve been basically living a single person’s life that whole time (meals for one, laundry for one, doing whatever you want to do whenever you want to do it) so it can be quite an adjustment to suddenly have to think of another person being in the house again. Oh, you didn’t want to spend the whole Saturday at flea markets and the mall? What’s this about a new pinball arcade that just opened up downtown?? Competing interests aside, just the act of doing daily tasks can become a war zone now that you have a buddy who you would like to help with the chores while they’re around. Not that being on the road isn’t a lot of work on that end buuuuuut when they haven’t taken out a trash or cleaned a toilet in 3 months, well, it can be easy to forget that someone’s been doing all of that back home (and a million more things) during that time and some chore relief would be well appreciated.

Anyways, this summer we spent most of Todd’s 3 month tour apart so when he did come home I found myself surprised that we were spending so much time fighting over the dishes and much less time frolicking through fields. I mean, I’d been waiting for FOR-EV-ER for him to finally get back and now this is what we are spending our limited time on?? We were both just plain annoying each other over really stupid issues. I was feeling a bit low about it until Todd reminded me that it was really ok, we were just readjusting to being together again. And you know what? He was right. Everything was ok. We were ok. I just got my gears a bit stuck in “single mode” and, due to the longer time apart, it was taking a little longer than usual to spring back into “couple’s mode” again. It only took another week after that realization for things to start to feel like they were back in the groove again, but here are a few thoughts that usually make the adjustment back to a full house a bit smoother:

-Keep your cool: When you feel your anger boiling over because you’ve asked for the trash to be taken out 3 times now but he can’t seem to tear himself away from a video game—take a breath and slow down. Having a calm yet grown-up discussion about the division of chores in the house (or whatever the issue is) will always go better when it’s not a screaming match.
-Remember how you communicate best: Having known Todd for 14 years now, I basically know exactly what I can say that will end a fight or fuel it further. Remember how you communicate best with your other half and choose to diffuse an argument rather than stubbornly let it build bigger and bigger.
-Try not to let “you didn’t finish the dishes” mean “I hate that you’re never home”: Listen, in this line of work, we all have days where we get upset because we are away from the one we love the most. Try not to let those feelings turn into a fight about something totally unrelated when that loved one is home. The dishes argument will never get resolved if it’s not actually about the dishes to begin with. Communicate about what you are actually feeling and try not to say one thing when you really want to say something else.
-Give Yourself A Grace Period: Depending on how long the break is between the end of this tour and the start of the next, you may not have a lot of time to wait out rough parts in an adjustment period. However, if you do have the luxury of some time together, don’t be too worried if you aren’t perfectly in sync on day one. If you both are working hard to treat your other half with patience, kindness, and just plain gratitude to be together, then the bumps should eventually subside as you find your rhythm and routine again.
-When Time Is Short, Switch To Vacation Mode: For short visits home between shows, it can be better to treat those few days like a vacation rather than try to get back to real life. Catching up is the main priority on those short trips so discuss any big things that really can’t wait but try to focus more on reconnecting than cleaning the gutters.

Overall, I know it can be hard to readjust and share your schedule again, but remember—this is also the person you’ve been missing and dreaming of while they’ve been away so don’t let petty arguments and annoying habits ruin the time you do have. Go on those picnics! Ride those horses! You both love the other person more! Remember all the reasons you love each other to begin with and let the dishes rot if you have to, I promise they aren’t the most important thing you have in front of you…

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October 5, 2016
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Litter Box Cover DIY!

Ok, so you guys already know that I love all things “crazy cat lady” but I especially love a good cat DIY that makes the less attractive parts of pet ownership more attractive. Since we don’t have a laundry room type space at this house I’ve been wanting to make a cute litter box cover for almost a year now and I finally got around to making one and sharing it over on A Beautiful Mess this week—I love it so much!! Being forced to have a litter box out in the open has always been my worst nightmare scenario when it comes to the kitties, but this solution has already made it way more tolerable on the old eyeballs.
Thankfully the cats seem happy with it too so that’s a big relief, PHEW!  If you need a solution for the litter box aesthetics in your home, this might be the fix for you!signature2 copy

September 3, 2016

Dream Kitchen Come True! (Part 1)

So, I have had this dream of a beautiful quartz countertop in my kitchen for years now. Our last house had a tan formica situation happening that I had saved up to replace a couple of times but something always came up and we would divert the money to another cause before it could happen. It’s probably for the best anyways since we would have apparently moved to Nashville pretty quick after it would have been installed and wouldn’t have gotten to enjoy it much before moving.

Anyways, our Nashville kitchen had a better option as far as quality goes (black granite rather than formica) but the black felt so heavy in the space and sucked up a lot of the light that the one small window brings in (you can see the “before the before” photos here). What you see above is actually the “midway” point that we’ve been living in for the past year. I replaced the original black narrow peninsula countertop with a white tiled DIY option to brighten up the space a bit, and while that helped a lot, it was still a placeholder solution since we had other issues to fix as well. One of the issues with the above setup is that we had a severe pantry shortage in this kitchen (as in there wasn’t really one to begin with) so we wanted to add much larger “L” shaped cabinets to replace the 12″ deep peninsula where all our food was stacked 4 rows high. It was the “shove the food in there and close the door quick situation” if you know what I mean. Since I couldn’t find a custom person to replicate the existing 60’s cabinet door situation on the other side of the kitchen, I decided to go with a flat front door on the new cabinets to compliment rather that copy the original design. Even though I knew I would have a few week gap of cabinets with no counter, I was still over the moon when the cabinets were installed. Space for all my food!! Slide out drawers! Lazy Susan, I missed you, you big sloth! I also chose a pull-out double trash so we could do trash in the front bin and recycling in the back bin. I’ve been piling up the recycling on the floor until the pile got too big so that second bin is a pretty big deal to me! We left the cabinet top open for a week until we finally used large pieces of cardboard as a makeshift counter (although I did miss that easy access to snacks, you could just reach right in the top! #SNACCESS). We also had the existing backsplash tile that I painted removed so we could replace the backsplash and add a garbage disposal at the same time we replaced the countertop. I have to say that I didn’t grow up with a disposal in the sink, but once you get used to it, it’s hard to go back to not having one! As you can see in the last picture, the tile and counters are removed and ready to be replaced with a gorgeous marble-veined quartz that I’ll show you soon!! SO EXCITED!!!signature2 copy

August 26, 2016
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Win a Trip to Nashville with Grogan’s Gala Giveaway!

 photo IMG_6349_zpsqlaervtt.jpgI can totally confess to being one of those girls that would occasionally walk into diamond stores and ask to try on their biggest diamond rings just to see how they looked on my finger (extra points for pink or yellow diamonds). Since I don’t mind being surrounded by a little extra bling, I was happy to partner with Grogan Jewelers by Lon to give you guys a behind the scene look at the photoshoot for Nashville Lifestyles magazine’s “25 Most Beautiful People” issue on Instagram Stories last week. As you can see below there were whole tables of beautiful jewelry available for the honorees to wear at the shoot and while I can’t tell you who the featured Nashvillians are, you may get to discover the secret in person by winning an all expenses paid trip to Nashville to attend the big reveal party yourself! Not only will the winner get a shopping trip and a makeover, but they will also get to wear some beautiful Grogan’s jewelry to the event as well. I don’t know about you, but all I can picture is the scene from “How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days” where Kate Hudson is wearing that giant canary diamond necklace named “Isadora”…count me in! All you have to do is submit a photo of yourself from a time when you felt #goals and submit it at the contest entry below! If it was me, I would use the above pic of our big date night in Paris last year. How could I not feel good in an all-feather miniskirt?

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 photo 0I0B0779_zps9e5dmmjy.jpgApparently I’m wearing almost 1 million $$ in jewels in the photo above—so beautiful!! To cover yourself in some of these fabulous gems, even if just for a night, enter below! Good luck!!

#GrogansGirl Nashville VIP Fashion Gala Giveaway