As I am beginning to think about watching Christmas movies, drinking Peppermint tea, wrapping presents, baking chocolate goodies and those beautiful twinkling lights, I’ve realized I never posted photos of the Fall decorations in our home. Let’s change that!


 My toilet paper pumpkin from Noah, spider web basket and mini pumpkins.
More fall goodies including my homemade pipe cleaner spider.
I can’t remember where/when I got these leaves but they are my favorite fall decorations!
My new fall decoration. This one totally fell into my cart when I was at a Michael’s. All I needed to do was throw in a candle!
Fall could be found throughout our apartment, including the bathroom.
And lastly, a bit of fall in our bedroom.
What is fall without pumpkin carving?
The Saturday before Halloween we headed to Kalamazoo to carve pumpkins with Justin and Tia.
Justin had a bit more fun than the rest of us!
His pumpkin was done first so photographer Justin got behind the camera.
Our beautiful pumpkins!

Ben’s pirate
Justin’s woman
Tia’s Western Michigan University pumpkin
My cat

(the carving knife broke during the smile.. haha)
Our pumpkins chilling at home!


Part 2

Last week I wrote about the closet cleaning/purging that occurred a few weeks ago. Two weeks ago Ben and I made a trip to IKEA. We have a running list of items we want from IKEA and Ben made the decision to start updating our bedroom. I was always in the mindset of… it is the room people don’t see so we don’t need to do anything to it.. WRONG! It is probably the most important room in our home. It is where you relax in the evening, the last thing you see and the first thing you see in the morning. The bedroom should be a place of relaxation and order. A while back we decided we will eventually turn our bedroom into a sea of greys, purples and white.. but here is the beginning stages of our bedroom redo.

We bought two new night stands for our bedroom. They sat in our office for a good portion of a week until I put them together one night when Ben was working. I rearranged the room, cleaned it and put it all back together before Ben got home!

Just a reminder of what our bedroom looked like..


Putting together Ben’s surprise! 

I first pulled everything out of the cabinets. There was a lot! Everything found a home except for a pile of Ben’s things and our extra comforter. 

We crammed a lot in those cabinets! 

Everything in Ben’s drawer. 

My drawer. 

My side is nearing completion! 

Love Love Love! 
Eventually we are getting matching lamps with purple lamp shades for our night stands. 

My tiny little drawer. Fits everything I needed! 

Half way! 

A sneak peak under our bed. Two long totes (filled with guest pillows) and Gregory resides here as well. I think Justin is going to be Gregory’s new owner. 

Sneak peak at another bedroom project. Notice anything funny? Any guesses as to what we are doing with our head board? 

Here is a BIG hint! 
Ben’s latest woodworking project. 

I got distracted… 

Hours later and here is where I am at with the room.
(pictures taken the next day)

Still trying to find a home for the comforter and cabinet. 
Small changes but that is more than we have done in this room so we are happy! 
It is the start to something great! 

(sorry for the delay in part 2.. school is starting tomorrow and life got crazy!)

Bedroom Redo!

We have been slowly working on different areas of our home and updating our furniture/decor. Our living room has made the most progress with almost all new furniture that has been bought in the last 13 months. Some furniture was painted when we moved in to fit better so overall our living room looks finished {of course it is not!} Our dining room has also seen a lot of change with Ben’s homemade table and mirror. Our kitchen has had a different type of makeover as we continue to go through drawers and cabinets getting rid of things and reorganizing. Our bedroom is virtually untouched, except for buying a bed when we moved in, a lampshade and little rug.

I started dusting one day and then this happened….

We have two long totes under our bed. One has two guest pillows. The other has my off season clothes. Clothes should be in the closet and I was bound and determined to make them fit. Out came everything from under the bed and most things in the closet. 

I went through all my clothes again and got rid of enough to put all our clothes neatly into the closet. There is actually growing room! There was a time when I almost bought more hangers and now we have more hangers than we know what to do with! 

I refolded a lot of my clothes {Ben did his a few months back and they looked so much better than mine!} and put the remaining clothes back neatly in their place. I also pulled out everything on the floor to sweep and mop. 

The final product! Everything fits in our closet! Yeah! 

Part 2… tomorrow…. 

To Prove My House Isn’t Always Clean….

I talk a lot about organization, a lot. I am passionate about this topic. I truly feel that an organized and clutter free home is a stress-free home. Ben feels the same. We both try hard to keep up on housework but there are some weeks that we are SO BUSY we can’t do it! Sadly almost all of this mess is mine… thankfully by the end of a Saturday this was all cleaned up! This was one of the first weeks of the summer program and I was definitely in over my head! 

Without further ado … my messy house..

My office space.. papers everywhere! Organized, yes, but looks so messy! 

The Dining Room became a dumping ground for Science materials, clothes and files. (Look I didn’t even push in my chair!)

You can tell Ben wasn’t as busy, the dishes were done! (That is usually his duty). I literally threw clothes everywhere. I put on some music and finally cleaned up after a long week! 

I brought so much junk from work home to go through, organize and bring back to school. It was crazy! And again… more clothes!! 

Sadly.. our house usually looks like this {well not this bad…} by Thursday afternoon but by Saturday afternoon it is back to normal! What can I say.. we are busy people! It’s understandable.. except for the clothes all over. There is no excuse for that… I was apparently feeling quite lazy! 🙂

OH: Week Sixteen

Organize Your Home: Week 16
Create a House Cleaning Schedule & Organize Cleaning Supplies

When I told Ben about the challenge for this week he said, “You don’t need to do this one.” I agreed. Making a cleaning schedule sounds wonderful and totally up my alley (being a lover of To-Do lists and all..) but with our our crazy schedules it would be too difficult to keep-up. We do a decent job right now and if the time comes when I want to start a cleaning schedule I have this post to look back to! 🙂

Step 1: Consider What Chores and Cleaning Tasks Need To Be Performed Daily and Weekly In Your Home.
Step 2: Create Two House Cleaning Schedules: A Daily and a Weekly Schedule
Step 3: Get In The Habit Of Working Your House Cleaning Schedule Daily and Weekly
Step 4: Organize Cleaning Supplies In Your Home

To get a free ebook that provides checklists for your daily, weekly, kitchen, bathroom and bedroom cleaning schedules (and more!) please click here. Then click “free ebook” tab to claim your copy of this book. 

I did complete Step 4 of this challenge and here are the steps I completed.
1. Clear out cabinet under the sink.
2. Clean the cabinet and wipe down the pipes. 
3. Go through everything, donate unused items, and wipe down what is left. 
4. Hang cheap curtain rod under sink.
5. Put everything back – organized! 



I also have cleaning supplies under the bathroom sink but that is already organized. Under that sink is a 7th generation toilet bowl cleaner, sponge and spray bottle with a bleach/water combination (for the pesky mold that I can’t get rid of in the shower). 

Apartment Tour (FINALLY!)

So it has been almost 9 months to the date that we moved in.. I feel that we are finally calling our apartment home! 
I haven’t unpacked a box in months but I feel like we have finally settled in enough to put up pictures! So here goes!
Click here to see the before. And here to see what the apartment looked like after a day of unpacking. It is funny to see the difference from those first pictures to now! If you want to compare our current place to our last place click here
Here we go – our place is no where near finished but this is a great start! 

Living Room
View from the door. 

Closer view of the left of the couch. 

Closer view of the other side of the couch. 

Our front window (and one of Ben’s projects)

The door to the left leads to the stairwell the one on the right leads to..

Our storage room 

Moving from the living room into the dining room. 
This room has lots of fun items on the wall, most were gifts.

We have some big plans for this room! 

I love the flowers! We are moving to the season where flowers are constantly on our table!

Turning around to view the kitchen. 
We still love our little window that connects the two rooms. 

We never get sick of all this counter space and cabinets!

Our guests love our letter magnets! (especially our littlest guests)

I love all our big windows! 

Displaying some new additions – drying rack and hanging rack above the sink from IKEA and a mixer from Ben’s birthday.

One last glance of our kitchen including our trash, recycling and potato bucket.

Taking a step out of the kitchen back into the dining room and taking a sharp turn. 
Hallway leading to the rest of the apartment. 

Ben put our wedding initials above our towels.

Riley hangs out in our bathroom. 

Now back into the hallway and taking a left into our bedroom. 
To the right is the office. 

Our bedroom  – we eventually want to redo this whole room! Someday.. 

Wedding memorabilia fills this room! 
Our tiny little dresser (belonged to Ben’s father as a child)

Heading out!

Now the office – the last room!
Where I spend most of my day – working at my desk (Ben made it!)

To the left! 

Bookshelf and more wedding goodies. 
(All the binders on the bottom is for work.. and more on the desk!)

A closer look at the top of the bookshelf. 

My desk! 

Thanks for “visiting” our humble home! 

Pallets, Pallets, Pallets!

Ben has been really itching to start woodworking again. It was a hobby he really enjoyed in High School and recently has been wanting to take up once more. A big motivator for this is our apartment. We moved in to our apartment in July and finally after almost a year have really settled in and feel like this is our HOME! But there are some empty spaces that could use some furniture, updates to furniture that can be done and creating more functional pieces in our home. 

We love to reuse, reduce and recycle in our home so we took that idea into designing new furniture for our place. In comes the idea of using pallets. Ben’s idea at first and after sketching out some plans he got to work. 

Project #1
Pallet Headboard

Step 1: Get Pallets
Step 2: Take wood off pallet.
Step 3: Cut wood into usable pieces. 

Step 4: Assemble pieces on a piece of plywood. 
Step 5: Cut of the random protruding edges.
Step 6: Sand down everything! 

Step 7: Stain the wood.
Step 8: Enjoy

The problem was the stain wasn’t the color we were hoping for so instead Ben sold it for a good chunk of change of Craigslist! 

Project #2
Pallet Mirror
Step 1: Buy an IKEA mirror
Step 2: Find some old pallets and take off the wood.
Step 3: Cut wood to size.
Step 4: Use wood glue to glue the wood to the mirror and place clamps in various locations around the mirror over night. This will ensure the boards glue nicely to the mirror.
Step 5 (optional): For extra support screw the boards in. *Recommended!*
Step 6: Hang your mirror!

Our dining room – in progress! 

Project #3
Pallet Coffee table

Step 1: Find a cool pallet in good shape.
Ie: no missing boards, boards close together, no stains, or water damage.
Step 2: Using a board from another pallet that matches close in color, make legs!
Step 3: Enjoy! 

This is another “to sell” item! 
This table is too big for our living room and does not go well with our current furnishings but Ben had fun building it! I will be sad when he sells it.