Category Archives: our home

no sew faux roman shade

I just realized that I have 4+ house projects going on at the same time. We’re doing the deck, I’m planting our garden out back, refreshing our porch, and making a shade for our kitchen. No biggie.

Making this shade took me about 25 minutes and $30 (for the rod and fabric). It isn’t perfect, but at that price point, I’m okay with that. I could definitely see myself swapping the fabric out if I find something that strikes my fancy.

I polled some folks on Instagram for their favorite fabrics – these were my top three:


Overwhelmingly, everyone really liked the first one. I did too, but I thought it might be better on a pillow or on something that wasn’t folded. I chose the third fabric, which still has a pattern but in a much larger scale. In hindsight, I really like it – but I could do something solid with a border in the future to keep it a bit simpler. This is the fabric closer up:


What I do really like is the weight of the fabric – it’s a thick cotton, which made it really easy to work with and starch for this purpose.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • A hot glue gun
  • An iron
  • Spray starch
  • Fabric
  • Curtain rod

Here’s what I did:

  1. I washed and dried the fabric, then starched with the spray starch and a super-hot iron.
  2. I created a “hem” for all of the edges with the iron, basically just pinning where I wanted the hem to be and ironing over it. SUPER high-tech over here.
  3. When that was done, I glued it with little beads of glue to create clean hems. My fabric was just wide enough for my window, but if yours isn’t, you’ll want to cut it to fit before you make your hem.
  4. Then I made a little pocket for the rod, about 6 inches (to keep it generous) and glued that.
  5. Once  that dried (2 min), I measured how much of my window I wanted to cover  up – I chose 13 inches since I didn’t want to lose a ton of natural light in my kitchen. Then I folded it up the way that I wanted it to look when dry, making sure it was no more than 13 inches long.
  6. I glued along the edge of each fabric fold. At first, I thought I could only do the edges and center, but it drooped when I raised it. If you choose a fabric that is thick, you’ll have no issue with that much glue – this is why I don’t think doing a thin fabric would really work here.
  7. Let it all dry for about five minutes, then loop in your rod and hang her up!

Next time, I’ll measure a bit more thoroughly and pin everything – that would have given me a super-exact look. I’m not really a stickler for that kind of thing and I’m still really happy with the way it turned out!

Here is the finished product:

IMG_0649I actually think it’s a little easier to see at night – excuse our mess! I glued everything while Chris was making turkey burgers last night. IMG_0634I can’t wait to see where I can wield my hot glue gun next. Happy Friday! xo


moravian star pendants.

I have a real thing for star pendants, as evidenced here.

I’m trying to figure out a light fixture for our dining room – it’s tricky, since we sometimes move the table when we have larger parties. Here’s our dining room now, just as a reminder:

You can see how we hung the fixture a little higher when we moved the table to the window. After a year in the space, I feel confident that I’m ready to invest in a light fixture even if we don’t have the table in the center of the room for 2 days out of 365.

I’ve been thinking a lot about a Moravian star pendant  – wouldn’t that be so dreamy? I was inspired by this photo in Brooklyn Decker’s dining room:


Here are a few that I’ve seen floating over dining tables:


I’m looking for one that’s more silver than bronze, and that seems to be a TALL order. The price is great for this one, but do I need something larger than 15″ wide? That seems TINY.

pendantWhat do you think? Would you ever do a untraditional chandelier in your dining room? Would love to hear your thoughts! xo


My grandmother came to stay with us for the past few days, so that has been AMAZING! I thought I would share a few pictures from the last week or so and our visit! Just a heads up: I realize there are roughly 500 pictures of Grace. Sorry ’bout that in advance.

This was an event of Chris’ on the water a few weeks ago. I have been stopping by on the weekends to take pictures when I can, and I’m always just bursting with pride when I see him in action. That line! #proudwifeIMG_0640 Dancin in the streets before work. IMG_0707
WIPED. OUT.IMG_0854 Gorgeous sunset on the water.IMG_0858 Wallpaper scheming for our downstairs bath…IMG_0863 Oh this is what our backyard looks like? It is currently covered in four thousand leaves. IMG_0878Checkin out the front yard while Grace tells Christopher to KEEP AWAY. IMG_1071 The leaves! The leaves in this town! I love em!IMG_1206 Goosie takes me to the best places on our walks.IMG_1369IMG_1212 When people are hugging, Goose needs to be involved. NEEDS HUGS AT ALL TIMES. IMG_1332 Grace’s preferred method of sleeping.IMG_1335 Love this photo.IMG_1354IMG_1388 Grandma and I were playing with table settings for Thanksgiving…IMG_1389 Christopher’s office is really coming along! Got four of the wonderful articles written about his business up on the wall, and the couch is finally in its rightful place…IMG_1392 The other wall in the room. From top to bottom: A photo of CJ and the truck on the day he bought it, a signed seat from the Sun Life Stadium in Miami signed by Dan Marino (my engagement gift to CJ) and a certificate from our school in Miami, who very generously planted trees in his mom’s name. IMG_1393

THERE ARE SO MANY LEAVES I WILL NEVER RAKE THEM ALL.IMG_1395  After our six mile walk today! She is so pooped.IMG_1398   Hope you had a great weekend! xo

six months in the house!

It has been six months in this dreamy dreamy dreamy house! I still can’t believe our luck and love waking up here every single day. Working on this house and living in it this summer and fall has been the best medicine for us. It feels like we are finally in our groove and really just enjoying life as our little family of four. The dogs don’t seem so overwhelming, both of us feel great about work, and finally the dust has settled. Here is the house on the day we closed back in April, if you would like to see!

So, why don’t you come in for a little tour?! I cleaned things up a little this morning to take these pictures, so nothing is perfect or styled in a fancy way…but grace, not perfection, right?IMG_0045Our first stop is the beloved porch. Chris works out here late most nights invoicing – so romantic!IMG_0026IMG_1189The living room hasn’t changed too much since we moved in, save for this rug that I adore that is going back this week. It has NOT worn well and we are a family of destructors, so it has to go back. IMG_1205  IMG_1187  Also Grace made her own doggie door, which is not okay.IMG_1186  IMG_1179IMG_1177IMG_1200Oh the stripes on the wall. How I adore them. We have a small crack in one of the walls, so we may need to paint/wallpaper them up…really not looking forward to that.IMG_1199The dining room. We spend a lot of time in here, strangely? I’m writing this post from here now, and we usually have our coffee in here. Which is so weird. This is the room I thought we would use the least, but we absolutely spend more time in here than the living room (which is the opposite of all of our other homes). Still on the hunt for a few more Restoration Hardware chairs!IMG_1196IMG_1191This needs a fresh coat of paint and something on the wall, but I can’t make up my mind. Since the house only has about three nails in any wall anywhere, I’m hesitant…IMG_1192Favorite room.IMG_1174  IMG_1173    The LEAVES!   IMG_1176   IMG_1175

A few of upstairs, since that is the least done but still deserves some updated shots:
IMG_1165IMG_1168IMG_1171IMG_1158And our wallpaper free bathroom!!IMG_0052Gosh this has been so much fun. Next up is Chris’ office, which now has a couch in it (!) and will have a gallery wall done this weekend. And maybe sometime in the spring, I’ll tackle our room…which is a HOT. MESS.

This is just my favorite place in the whole world.


Happy Friday! xo

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our first week in our house.

Otherwise known as, “I Hope You Like Seeing Photos Of Empty Rooms and Puppies”

In what may have been one of the BANANAS SANDWICH times of my life, we moved into the house on Wednesday of last week. It’s been emotional and hard in all of the ways this step should be hard, and coupled with the fact that Christopher has needed to spend the past two weeks in Miami – well, it’s been a little nutty. Bananas sandwich, if you will.

Thank goodness for amazing friends and family who live nearby. And semi-nearby. Semi-nearby enough for them to halt their lives multiple times so I wouldn’t have to deal with Optimum Cable alone. I haven’t really eaten dinner by myself since he’s left, which is unbelievable since I am really the farthest from anyone I know. It doesn’t not feel like I live alone in a random town in New England, but I think we are on the way for it feeling more like my random home in New England.

CJ left on a Monday when we were living in one city, and came back on a Thursday when we were living in another. It was not avoidable, it was completely necessary, and I would make the same decision, if there was even a decision to  be made. I have really, really, really good friends – including one friend who literally FORCED HERSELF UPON ME for the duration of the week, so that I didn’t have to deal with the cleaning of behind the washer/dryer and walk throughs and mover negotiation alone. I could have absolutely done it by myself, but thankfully I didn’t have to. That was really nice.
IMG_0111 IMG_0112IMG_0144 So we made it, all safe and sound, the three of us Dall’aus and our chaperones, to our new city in our new house.IMG_0148I love it in ways I never expected to love it. I keep saying over and over, this is so good for my soul. IMG_0113 IMG_0114 Obviously it is so good for Grace’s soul too.

The part she loves that she never expected to love are the twigs – she loves the twigs. She brings them onto her carpet on the porch and just relaxes with them. She’s doing it right now as I type this.
IMG_0115 The night before CJ left we all piled into the empty house for the first time, ordered pizza and had a picnic in our living room. It was delicious. IMG_0133IMG_0121In the car over to the house with my family. IMG_0096Gosh little big house I love you so!IMG_0130As we knew it would, G’s personality has really mellowed out since we moved. She is still Grace “Monster Truck Rally” Dall’au, with a side of pleasant calm for a half hour every other day. I’ll take it!IMG_0116 IMG_0103 IMG_0104
And my little guy? Well he’s just the bravest homeowner that you ever did see. Grace will sit at the top of the stairs and cry when I go into the basement, but Harley has become full-on Man Of The House and comes with me into the basement, into the attic, everywhere. No fear for this little guy.

And now he has his favorite perch ever, where he can watch the world go by.IMG_0106Since Christopher left, Grace has liked to be carried around like a large toddler. She is scared by all of the noises and smells of the “country”. Basically she’s the biggest baby and Harley is the puppy equivalent of Bruce Wayne.

There was a horrible instance of the box spring not fitting up our 1940 New England staircase so we had to put the mattress on the floor. And then there was another horrible instance of Grace’s crate being too small all of a sudden and Kait was sleeping in that room and it all snowballed and then Grace “slept” in bed with Kait and now she mourns her departure every day. IMG_0108 My first big girl commute 24 minutes north.IMG_0117Getting used to the suburbia of it all!
IMG_0152IMG_0275My compatriots sitting in the living room one night. Don’t be fooled – both of them are chewing on something they aren’t supposed to be. I think you can see the slight hint of a TWIG coming out of Monster Truck’s mouth.
IMG_0381Sigh. Spring in this delicious house. IMG_0389IMG_0390IMG_0395Our first week in the suburbs were a huge success. I am immensely proud of myself and our little family. And so, so grateful that we have the kind of friends and family who can rally around us in times like these. I feel rallied around. I sure do.IMG_0151It wasn’t easy, but it was worth it.


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This is our house on the day we closed.

Here it is, folks! Our house on the day we closed!

This is the first floor bathroom, in all of its wallpapered glory. And me in the mirror : )
IMG_0090 This is CJ’s office  – there are three windows in here, which feels DECADENT and FANCY.IMG_0089 This is our kitchen! The washer and dryer actually have cabinet doors that hide ’em. We are most likely going to move those downstairs to get more cabinet space, but that may be a long way off. IMG_0088 This is the reason I bought this freaking house, the breakfast nook. I just adore it and plan on spending most days here.IMG_0092 This is the living room, with a door out to the screened-in porch. IMG_0086 This is the dining room, in all of her bright yellow glory!IMG_0085 Stairs down. But we are goin on up! Maybe can you tell they also painted stripes on their stairs and that there is cable-knit carpet down the stairs? I MEAN COME ON. Also I strangely love our doorknob but that is just the homeowner dork in me.IMG_0084 This is the guest bedroom – it’s a sweet blue color that I am for sure keeping! Guests, a heads-up.IMG_0083 This is the window seat. Also we bought this house for the window seats.IMG_0082 More bathroom wallpaper. Why? There are so many rights, I will allow this one wrong.IMG_0080 Our bedroom! More window seats! Or as I like to call it, the Grace seat. Someday she will be calm enough to lay there. I promise.IMG_0079 And well that’s my left finger. And there you have the screened-in porch! It is ORIGINAL TO THE HOUSE which makes me SO FREAKING HAPPY. I love it and also plan on splitting my time between this porch and the breakfast nook. I am very busy.IMG_0076 Just some flowers in our yard. OUR YARD. 
IMG_0073IMG_0091We did it! We did it! And I am just so over the moon, top of my head to my tippy toes HAPPY.

Our home!!!!

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