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Wednesday, 3 September 2014

The Rustic Porch

Hi everyone! It has been busy, busy, busy around here! We have so many projects and events on the go, but just not enough time to blog about them! I promise I’ll soon have some excellent DIY posts for you on a picture frame, and a bench, along with the kids birthday party I’ll be hosting this Saturday, but for now you’ll have to bide your time by gazing at another amazing store I toured on my road through to Calgary!

This store, called The Rustic Porch, is a little ways outside of Cranbrook, BC on the outskirts of a tiny town called Jaffray. You can see this incredible store as you’re driving along Highway 3; in fact I first saw this store when we were on a road trip to Medicine Hat this summer for a wedding but we never had time to stop! It looked so impressive though that I vowed to stop there on my Calgary trip and boy am I glad I did!

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Isn’t that the most incredible home you have ever seen? If I understood correctly the ladies son built it and has his own business building log houses. I’m completely obsessed with the humongous log archway; how they ever found/made that log arch is beyond me!

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I was curious what delights awaited me inside this store if the outside was so entrancing, and they surely did not disappoint! The incredible architecture and log details were just as amazing inside, and the decor and items for sale were all positively swoon worthy.

Upon walking inside you are greeted with a sizeable main floor, with all sorts of bookshelves, hutches, and even tables loaded with decor for your pleasurable viewing.

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The mish-mash of items hanging from that table beats out any old light fixture, it’s so unexpected, yet so rustic and delightful.

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And don’t you just love those lanterns clustered in the middle of this table?

One of my favourite spectacles in this house, however, was definitely the staircase, with each step hewn out of a log. Upstairs there were various articles of clothing and kids toys for sale!

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The top floor was separated into two spaces – the sales area and, I’m guessing, an office. Each on a different side of the house divided by a nifty “bridge”. This allowed the timber ceiling to really be showcased when looking up from down below.

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Speaking of looking down below, check out the view from the top floor. Isn’t that door divine?

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Now I’ll share a few of my favourite items I stumbled across in the store in no particular order.

One of the first items I viewed that I adored, this enchanting picture frame cluster.

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Is that not positively feminine and chic? I could totally picture it in a little girls nursery, complete with endearing maternity pictures and little baby footprints; you could even put some birth mementos like your child’s birth bracelet in the cubbies, or simply a little stack of wooden building blocks.

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On the subject of picture frames isn’t this one fascinating? I’ve seen lots of ladder DIY’s but none that involved picture frames hanging between each of the slats! I love the colours of the frames as well! Each different, yet so cohesive!

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I’m on a huge clock kick right now, as we are desiring one for our kitchen, and there were tons of clock eye candy to be had here!

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Now on a different note, if you love log cabins yourself but aren’t able to live in one, how about a log cabin doll house? I’m not sure whether this was meant to be a doll house, or just a shelf of sorts, but for whichever purpose I found it absolutely stunning! I would love to get one for my daughter to play with and furnish.

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And speaking of furnishings, have you ever seen anything like this set? Chairs and tables made out of logs and antlers! While decorated quite rustically here I’m sure it could also look very chic in a modern home as well with the right pillows or throws.

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Here’s a close up of the table! I just love the antlers around the base!

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Their was even a similar rocking chair, and I love how some of the bark detailing has been left on this one to add some contrast.

While I never actually purchased anything in this store I will definitely be keeping it in mind when I am in the market for some rustic home decor! If you really loved what you saw, feel free to check out their Facebook page for more details, located here!

What was your favourite part that I happened to share today? I’d love to hear in the comments below!

Also I would like to note quickly that there will be no post next week, and regular posting will resume Sept 16th. I am taking a short break to enjoy the children’s birthdays, and to catch up on some of the DIY posts that I have been hoarding due to lack of time! I look forward to chatting with all of you then!

**This post was in no way endorsed, or sponsored by, The Rustic Porch. I just fell in love with their store and the items they had to offer and wanted to share it with all of you!**

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Real Deals on Home Decor Store Visit

Hi everyone! Last week I had an amazing, child-free, road trip to Calgary! So what does that mean? Stopping at all the stores you can’t (or prefer not too lol) stop at when you do have children! Today I will be sharing with you some of the awesome displays and items I witnessed at Real Deals on Home Decor in Cranbrook, BC! I never actually purchased anything, but let me tell you this store was quite the feast for the eyes, and definitely had quite a few items I would have loved to purchase if I wasn’t watching my funds so tightly at the moment!

I would also like to note that this post is in no way endorsed by Real Deals on Home Decor, I simply loved their displays and items, and wanted to share them with all of you! If you are, however, in the area I definitely recommend checking them out!

As soon as you walk into this store it’s just eye candy central; huge mish-mash displays just bursting with fascinating items, yet so cohesively put together! Whomever owns this store seriously needs to offer lessons on putting together displays/mantels/etc.

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Incredible isn’t it? And those were just a few of the displays in the store!! Now for a breakdown of some of my favourite items…let’s start with art shall we?

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This piece immediately stood out to myself; I would absolutely love to hang this in my daughter’s room as a constant reminder to her of those values.

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I have always dreamt of a home office/craft room with gorgeous light pink walls, and these two female paintings would definitely take center stage. I love the wispy lines, the romanticism of it, it’s just so dreamy and feminine to me!

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I love this world painting! It’s really neat being on weathered wood, and the texture of it is incredible! It also had metal studs in various parts of the map and around the frame which added a neat element to it. I would love this in Zenith’s room, but even in a living room could be spectacular!

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While on the subject of maps check out this nifty trunk? This could make a wonderful conversation piece of a coffee table! It could be really nice with a lucite tray on top so you could see through it and still appreciate the artwork of it; although a wooden one would be just as nice if lucite isn’t your thing. It could also work at the foot of a bed, or in a corner of a room for some eye-catching extra storage!

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There was a whole wall of nifty clocks at this store, but this one in the back really stood out to me as it’s in the shape of a skeleton key! Definitely not something you see every day! I wish I had pulled it out before I took the picture so you guys could have gotten a better look!

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There were some neat smaller items too, like this nifty numbered unit. Could work great as a catch all at the front door, or to store supplies in an office, or what about for a kids room to hold small toys like lego men?

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Speaking of “catch all’s” they had an incredible wall of hooks, and hangers, and storage units. I loved this one for the fact that it’s a mix of everything with hooks on the bottom for keys, some little cubbies, plus a space to hold mail!

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Here was another piece I would have loved…that metal mail sorter. We have a wooden version hanging up that I would trade in a heartbeat for this industrial styled one! I also love the towel holder with basket underneath! Would be so cute in a bathroom!

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Last glimpse of this wall I swear! I loved that 3 bin mail box below! I absolutely love the industrial styling again, and it too could work really well in our front entrance to hold random things.

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The store also sold random knick knacks and vases….my favourite was actually just a simple blue & white chevron vase. This vase was a decent size, and would have looked lovely on a shelf or table in our living room as we are wanting to incorporate a few small hits of navy blue in with our orange & grey.

So what were some of your favourite store items that I previewed? Do you have any store recommendations that are on a must see list? It would be so awesome to one day go on a “home-decor” road trip, and just hit up some really neat decor shops tucked away in the corners of the globe!

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Getting Your Child to the Dentist…

The dentist….if you have children you too probably dread the thought of it! Anna is naturally such a shy girl, and I, personally, have always struggled as a result getting my daughter to go to the dentist. Then again, she’s just not very agreeable when it comes to being put on the spot for strangers, even getting her to agree to a hair cut took forever and the hairdresser is one of my friends!

I never put much thought into the dentist since she’s so young, and I didn’t deem it a very big deal. However, lately, Anna has been having trouble with some of her teeth and we have been needing to go a lot more often, and I really wanted to make it as easy as possible on her. After much consideration I came up with what seemed a great solution – the tooth fairy.

Tips for Visiting the Dentist @ Pink Hammers & Sippy Cups

Ever since Anna first learned about the tooth fairy she’s been asking when she’s going to come visit, and was even disappointed some mornings when “the tooth fairy hasn’t come yet!”. As a result, I decided to skip waiting for her to lose her first tooth and incorporate the tooth fairy for the dentist as well!

I started out by going to the dollar store and secretly purchasing a fairy wand. I then told Anna that when she went to the dentist, if she opened her mouth, the tooth fairy would be watching and would bring her a present that night for being so good to the dentist.

When the day arrived for our appointment I secretly brought the fairy wand with me, of which I was grateful, because when the assistant called for us to go to the room Anna dug in her heels and absolutely refused to budge, already on the verge of a meltdown! I then whipped out the fairy wand, stated the tooth fairy gave it to me to give her courage, and managed to convince her to come with me to see the dentist.

Sadly, no matter what I told her about the tooth fairy after that, she still refused to open her mouth, but at least I got her in the room which is a start. Hopefully next time we can get her to open up her mouth! If she does I plan on writing her a little note from the tooth fairy, and rolling it up with a quarter, which I’ll leave on her pillow when she’s asleep that night!

Have any of you had success with getting your young, particularly timid, children to the dentist? If not then hopefully my tactic will work for you! Let me know if you give it a try!

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Fabulous New Throw Pillows

Welcome back everyone! Apologies for being MIA last week however we had a bit of a family emergency Tuesday/Wednesday and I just didn’t get the time to finish up this post and get it up in time! Luckily all is well now though so onwards we continue!

We have had the same sweater throw pillows on our couch ever since we moved in; I initially made them Christmas 2011 so it should be a crime that we were still using them longgg after winter was past, again, and again, and again. I had started out with great intentions to make new throw pillows for Summer and use my sweater ones for winter but that just never happened!

Lots of excuses piled up, we were renovating our living room so I wasn’t sure what I wanted the pillows to look like, then we finally decided but I had to find fabric, finally I had fabric but needed pillow forms, and then I ran out of excuses and simply needed time. (And now I needed extra time to write this post…sensing a common theme? I don’t get along well with throw pillows obviously!).

Without further ado I present our newest throw pillows which will probably be here to stay for a long while!

DIY Zipper Pillows @ Pink Hammers & Sippy Cups

DIY Zipper Pillows @ Pink Hammers & Sippy Cups

Making these pillows was actually quite a synch; probably easier than putting up with my procrastination! They even have, gasp, zippers!! I have seen lots of those envelope fold pillows around but I like the idea of a pillow looking good both ways as ours frequently get tossed around so zipper was our only option although, to be honest, I have never sewed a zipper before in my life! My last pillows may have even been attached at the bottom via safety pins….*looks away in embarrassment* and yes, we still used them for like 3 years lol.

This time around however Charles refused to let me get away with safety pins, and I knew I’d want them to be able to be washed, so I set out to Pinterest to learn how to sew pillows with zippers!

I happened to stumble this amazing tutorial via Grace Bonney at Design*Sponge! I’m going to spare myself from writing this tutorial, and instead you can find the whole step by step ordeal, complete with detailed pictures, here.

So instead of sharing a tutorial, I’m just going to share some of my thoughts and experiences along the way. First off, cutting fabric. Am I the only one who wishes to call out for fabric cutting SOS? Seriously! It’s the part I dread the most, I measure and re-measure but they always seem to be off and I can’t cut straight if my life depended on it! I even recruited my daughter’s place mat to help me out but it was still by no means easy! Maybe one day I need one of those sewers place mats with all the measurements right on it. Does anyone have experience with those??? Seriously, any tips are immensely appreciated for making my life easier in this department!

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Luckily, after all my hair pulling and measurement mistakes my pillows still look pretty darn uniform in real life, thank god.

Once I got my fabric cut I trucked along ironing, and sewing, to the best of my abilities. The tutorial honestly lays it all out pretty easily, and once you get in the groove it really doesn’t take that long either thankfully! My only second largest issue was the seam ripping…this happened with about 3 of my pillows…

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Obviously I didn’t do something right!! Luckily I was just able to hand sew that bit together and you hardly notice the mishap, and they have held together just fine since then. We will see what happens when we put them through the wash!

Also let me make note….do not buy zippers before you know the size of your pillows!!!

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Shoving an 18” pillow into a 10” hole is not a good idea hahaha! Thankfully I’m stubborn and stuffed it in but I don’t think these pillows will be getting washed as often as I had planned lol.

Either way, now that they are sewn, and stuffed, and seams repaired, I couldn’t be happier with my new pillows! Not to mention getting rid of my old ones! Maybe one day I’ll make new sweater pillows, maybe, but for now those old ones are going in the trash!

It is truly exciting to see our living room starting to take shape and conform to our vision…it’s only taking a few years to do so, but one day, one day, it will be complete. We have even ordered in some curtains from Sears (yes, I gave up sewing those haha). Although while we ordered 2 panels, only one came in and the other one is back ordered…so yes, we have one curtain panel hanging in our living room at the moment because we are that impatient. I’ll make you wait for pictures though ;) Oh who am I kidding, here’s a sneak peak! Hopefully the other curtain comes in soon!

DIY Zipper Pillows @ Pink Hammers & Sippy Cups

Please share in the comments below any tips you have for cutting fabric, or any amusing mishaps you have suffered while sewing! I’m sure I can’t be the only one!

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Before 30 Bucket List!

As I was sitting here today I was trying to come up with some inspiration as to what to write for a blog post…we are still waiting for our kitchen, and while over the next week I will be sewing some throw pillows, and Charles will be making a  large picture frame, I didn’t have any current posts to write about!

I was entertaining the idea of going back through old photos and seeing if there was anything I had not yet blogged about when I found myself chatting with my sister-in-law, Susi, about going shopping in Calgary and perusing some of the designer stores and “dreaming big” because I have this goal of getting a really nice, potentially designer, leather bag before I turn 30.

Boom! Inspiration! I have a short bucket list of things to do before I turn 30, and being that I will be 25 this year, I deemed it fitting to write it all down and share it with you, so here goes! In no particular order…

1) Complete a tough mudder! An 18-20km race riddled with both physically and mentally challenging obstacles? Not everyone’s cup of tea but I dream of the challenge! This year, in only 2 more short weeks, I am taking on my first 5k Spartan Race and while I may not have even completed it yet I already have the thirst for more!


Photo from and courtesy of www.toughmudder.com

2. Get Married – hah! Hopefully…every time I say I want to get married before 30 Charles just laughs at me and says “we’ll see”…he likes to keep me guessing, the jerk hahaha. This year our kitchen came first however and rightfully so ;)

3. Own a high quality, potentially designer, leather bag – Now that we have the two major ones out of the way how about some frivolity? There’s  just something about a “goes with everything”, timeless, leather bag that screams luxurious and grown up to me and I want to be a part of that club hahaha. I’m particularly loving Coach at the moment, however not those ones riddled with the logo, yikes (no offense to those who like them). I’m digging this one…the
Bleecker Sullivan Hobo in Pebbled Leather <3<3<3

Photo courtesy of Coach

4. Get drunk while camping – After one “grown up dream” how about a ridiculous childish one? Having grown up in the city we didn’t go camping much, and certainly not back in my wild teen days. I would love to one day go camping for the weekend, without children, and just drink, have a bonfire, and be slightly reckless ;)

5. Go on a girls vacation – I think it would be so much fun to get together with some of my best female friends and go on a vacation! Be it to somewhere beachy like Mexico or the Bahamas, or going to Las Vegas; some cocktails, shopping, and girl talk is definitely in store! It’s the things movies are made of right?

6. Have our house in decent shape – I dream of finally being able to have our attic done, our kitchen finished, and the kids bedrooms dry walled and painted. The bathroom, basement, and exterior can wait, but I do long for those listed. Then again, even just proper flooring would be nice compared to our plywood! Hahahaha.

7. Get my two other tattoos – At the moment I have two lilies on the inside of my left forearm, and a single snowflake on my right. I dream of expanding on that snowflake tattoo to make it as big as the one on my left. I also have some ridiculous Japanese writing on my left ankle that I want to cover up with a gorgeous owl tattoo!

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8. Be well on our way to retiring at 40! – This is a running “joke” with Charles and I and yet we also mean it with dead seriousness. We really do dream of “retiring” at 40; not necessarily doing nothing for the rest of our lives, but being in a position where we are financially set up and stable that we no longer have to “go to work”, do the 9-5, etc. Whether it be Charles having his own business with construction that he just has to occasionally supervise, or even if our spa business builds up it’s clientele and employees so we also just have to supervise that. Perhaps even some other unknown factor will come up, but we are putting it into the universe that it will happen! Just wait till you see everything I want to accomplish in my 40’s once that does happen lol!

Well….that’s honestly about it. While I may only have 8 things left I want to accomplish before I’m 30, I like to think a lot of them are quite grand achievements and, to be honest, I’m extremely proud of how much I have accomplished so far in only 25 years, but that’s another list to come, maybe around my birthday ;)

What is on your bucket list before 30? Or what did you accomplish if you are already 30+? Feel free to share in the comments below!

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

A Simple Party with some DIY fun!

Hi everyone! It was recently Charles’ mothers birthday so, since we now have a big BBQ, I decided we would change up tradition a bit and host the birthday bash at our place; after all, I love any excuse to decorate for a party!

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I didn’t want to go too over the top, and I only wanted to use items we had on hand, so it definitely took some creative thought to put together some simple, but beautiful decorations. My first source of inspiration actually came from a sheet of all places! I found this gorgeously patterned fitted sheet at a thrift store a few years back, however, it was a really odd size (not even wide enough for a crib sheet!) so I never knew what to do with it! Finally I decided it would be lovely to turn it into a table runner! Check out how, along with more party details, after the jump!

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

How We Planned Our Kitchen

Welcome back everyone! This week I would love to share with you the process that went into planning our kitchen renovation!

We have never renovated a kitchen before so we were more than a little lost when it came to where to start. We had a general idea as to the style we wanted (shaker fronts, dark wood, etc.) but….who do you go to? How do you plan your kitchen? What exact materials did we want? Never mind the biggest question…how much is it going to cost???

We were slowly looking into things, but never getting any definitive answers, until after our Christmas party when we decided we had to rip out our kitchen floors (you can read about that here). This made us realize that we really needed to buckle down and figure things out! To start things off we decided to go with what I think most everyone knows best…Ikea.

Ikea has a really neat kitchen planner which you can access here, that allows you to design your kitchen in 3D. It takes a little bit of work to figure out how the program works, but eventually we managed to somewhat recreate our kitchen and get a basic idea for what we were wanting, along with a starting price quote. My biggest tip with this program is work slowly, as it can be easy to click and move the wrong things, and SAVE OFTEN!

I first will start with showing you some old pictures of our current kitchen for comparison….sigh, I kind of miss our cracked, cold tile floors….I never thought I’d say that but anything beats our current rough, dirty, hardwood! We are so close to new ones though! Just have to wait a little longer….

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