Furniture Sets

Due to my increased amount of reading and redefining my own style in the last year or two, I've come to notice something quite common. 

Sets of furniture. Bedroom sets. Living room sets. Dining room sets. 

I know these are the easiest for decorating and often most affordable choices but they don't have much character. More importantly, no YOU! 

I once read a design rule that you shouldn't have three pieces of the same brown in any room (enter furniture sets). Pottery Barn, Crate and Barrel, and Value City Furniture are trying to sell furniture, not make a house a home. Next time you see a set of furniture, look for a corresponding piece that is not in the set (even if it's for pretend) to put a room together. Train your eye.

The bedrooms above incorporate different textures, colors, and types of woods.Think outside the box. 

Cookie cutter, steer clear.


Meal Train: Scheduling Meals

Meal Train. Have you heard of it? 

I hope I haven't been the only one in the dark. I just learned about the meal planning website as I was arranging meals to be taken to a friend who's giving birth any day now. It was simple to sign up. Enter your friends info. Have them edited the dates and types of food they want. You can then email to friends or post on Facebook. Wa-la!

Be a good friend and provide this service to your friends who are soon to be moms or those struggling with family illness. Thought it was too good not to share.

Check out Mealtrain here.


Entrepreneur at Heart

Remember when I shared with you that I would love to be a party planner? (Here's some crazy talk if you missed it.)  Personal, intimate, and fun parties that is. Here's my newest idea. Humor me please....

I would love to create reasonable party plans for people to buy online. I would provide a stylin' mood board of items that the buyer can go and purchase locally. It takes the planning out for the customer but provides a unique and special party. As in the vocabulary of my second grade students, the buyers would think, "easy peasy"!

A while ago I was inspired by these guys.

And with these party blogs that I wrote about here, boy oh boy, inspiration galore!

If anyone wants this service free of charge let me know. I need a portfolio right? ;)


Say Goodbye

I was ready to take down my Christmas card pictures but really didn't want to. My solution? Cut off the Christmas clutter. (I couldn't salvage all of them. Boo-hoo.) Now I have a bunch of good looking people on my refrigerator! 

A before shot would have been good. You get the point.

Here's some other Pinterest ideas (late in coming) to savor the Christmas cards a little while longer.
A few metal rings and a whole punch. Enjoy on the coffee table.

Practice names or use as a prayer journal for little ones..

That's all I got friends. Did you try something new this year with your Christmas cards?


What We Want

Yesterday I shared the baby steps we've taken in the last week in home buying. It's quite exciting that the time is actually here. Visions are becoming realities. Very cool if you ask me.

Every time we're with friends and family they always ask one question. "What are you looking for in a house?"

We haven't completely nailed down our priority list but this is what we're thinking as of now.
  • 3+ bedrooms
  • 2+ bath
  • mature trees
  • shorter commutes to work
  • spacious kitchen, not updated (I've seen too many poorly updated kitchens.)
  • no major remodeling...not in the cards this time 
  • garage...I'm over scraping my car. Plus I need one for my inherited refrigerator.
  • school district
Our price point puts us at two different styles of houses. In my school district, we could afford a ranch style home with lots of character and mature trees. Going north towards Carmel, we could buy a bigger, newer house and still have the trees. Hmmm... What will it be...

Things that we're not so cool with...
  • vinyl siding, builder-boring
  • weird layouts
Whoa... we are adults. 

Side note: I've enjoyed hearing advice and encouragement from my readers. Much appreciated! 


Home Buying Update

After the new year I shared our home buying goals for this year. It's the end of February and we're moving along. Slowly that is.

Our goals are changing. We've been crazy about paying off our student loans so that we could be debt free when we purchase a home. We've decided to not completely wipe it out due to wanting a bigger down payment/money to work with in making our future house a home. But don't think we've given up on paying off our debt. We made our final payment on my Anderson loans a couple of months ago. One down, one to go!
  • We just got pre-approved for a mortgage last week. HOLLAR! If you know me and this process, you know this is a really really big deal. The Mr. completed a form online. The bank called. We were pre-approved! Simple as that. If only the whole process will be this easy. Here's to wishful thinking.
  • The Mr. made my heart skip a beat when he sent an email to a recommended Realtor for us to chat. Score!
  • I've planted a seed in my dad's ear, custom kitchen........here's to double wishful thinking.
  • More importantly, we've been praying for what's next. Whatever that may be.
All in all, baby steps make me happy. Very happy.


February Recently Acquired Goodness

Do you remember when I thought about starting a series on the Goodness I find online? Well, I'm following through (surprise, I know). If not, you can check out January's post here.

Here's to February and all it's goodness...

Thinking of redoing a kitchen? Have you considered IKEA? Here's an intriguing post in favor of them.

These were yummy. Tasted more like a scone. Get the recipe here.

    Planning a nursery? Holy smokes, you gotta check this website out.

    I haven't tried any of these yet but if you're diy-ing anything these aps might help.

    And to sum up how I drive The Mr. nuts when sleeping...
    Anyone else crazy like me?

    Cheers to February's Goodness!


    Valentine's Day

    Today is not about romance for me. Today is about blessings. May it be the same to you, friend.


    First Blogoversary!

    Woot! Woot!

    I made it a year! I've now been a blogger for a year and can embrace it. I'm quite proud of myself!

    When I first set out to start the adventure of Home Awaits it seemed more idea driven. The follow through seemed nearly impossible if you know me at all. With that being said, today is a day for me to celebrate.

    As I reflect, I think about how little I knew about blogging way back when. Did I know that each post would take more than an hour? No. Did I know that pictures editing/uploading/sourcing weren't quick and easy? No. Did I think anyone besides my mom would read it? No. These surprises/realizations have made the adventure worth it. 

    Blogging is more about writing than I first thought. Not only is it weird to me that my own thoughts and opinions are public but that people read them and respond/question about them. At first, when people mentioned Home Awaits, it seemed almost embarrassing to me but now I am grateful and appreciate the readership. Read my first ever post here.

    Why I love blogging...
    Blogging is an outlet. It's a way for me to think out loud when thinking about "home". (Don't worry, I don't think "home" 24/7.) I have learned to love the discipline of writing to a certain audience, discovering my voice. The greatest compliment was when someone said to me, "I can just hear you saying that". That's my goal. I love blogging because I get to encourage and inspire others to "do" (my favorite and overused verb).

    Looking ahead...
    I don't think I would have written for a year, but I have. Now it's time to look ahead. Here are some of my blogging goals. Maybe I'll make it to my 2nd Blogoversary. Just maybe. :)
    • Taking better pictures.The Mr. reminded me in bed last night that I need to take a class. I told him HE should and then he can teach me. He IS the better teacher.
    • Commenting on other blogs. It's hard for me but I should get over it. I know it would help my blog too.
    • Ongoing writing development. I look forward to being a better writer. It's in the process.
    • Inspire and equip others to try something new or think differently about the space they call home.
    I've had my lulls but I still find this community to be one of my favorite hobbies. With 129 posts, hours and hours of typing, time spent reading other blogs, I've learned what it means to be a blogger.  I've struggled at times with the focus being too materialistic but to be honest, I've embraced it as my art. My creative side. Something that I enjoy.

    I would love to hear from YOU (yes YOU, the person I went to high school with, the person who saw a link on a friend's Facebook page, the person I've never met) to share questions or home related scenarios for me to ponder and write about. I want to build this community. Not just to build it but to connect and inspire others. Please...comment below. Don't be embarrassed. You will make my day.


    Another Quick and Easy

    Earlier this week I posted about some quick dinners. See here. After eating at some friends last night, I realized I forgot to mention this yummy dinner.

    • 4 chicken breasts
    • 1 Jar of Herdez Salsa Verde
    • Crock Pot
    Cook all day. Shred and enjoy on nachos or tacos. Boy, is it good!


    Why Costco...

    Why Costco?

    WE LOVE COSTCO! We're crazy for our Costco and there is only two of us. 
    Top reasons why we love Costco:

    • cheaper gas
    • cell phone deals
    • car tires at a way better price
    • family lunch/dinner for under $4.
    • samples, samples, samples
    • great meat (we freeze a lot of it)
    • Claussen pickles
    • newly discovered Chobanni yogurt. (With 14 g. of protein, I eat it everyday for lunch.)
    • fresh fruit!
    • cheapest Feta
    • good wine at a good price
    • 2nd grade school resources
    • magazines at a discount
    • occasional clothing purchases
    • beautiful bouquets of flowers
    • Kirkland brand wipes
    • bulk espresso coffee
    • walking distance from our church (Usually a Sunday afternoon outing.)

    Kirkland (Costco's brand) rocks! I haven't been a member of Sam's Club but I don't think I would ever cross over. Costco is too good to me! Even though the membership is $50, it's worth it even though it's just the two of us.

    What's your take? Costco vs. Sam's Club?


    Two for the Price of One But Free

    Don't you love being the birthday girl or boy for that matter? 

    My quarter century birthday left me with a few fun surprises. One of those being a chunk of money from my parents. I knew immediately that I was going to buy table lamps with the birthday cash. Yeah, I'm old and boring. Today I'm bragging about my favorite new purchases. No more fighting over the bedside lighting for reading or having to keep my lamp on for The Mr. when he comes to bed late. 

    They're lovely. Mercury glass and all. Forty dollars at HomeGoods, can't beat it! Every time I walk into our bedroom I say,  "ahhhh". Lamps make me happy. There, I said it.


    A Staple These Days

    Monday nights usually mean The Mr. and I are working late. That also means dinner is a complete pain. Lately, we've been quite content with these staples....

    Flatbread Pizzas
                  • Flatbread
                  • Olive Oil
                  • Roma tomatoes
                  • Basil
                  • Feta/Parmesan

    Bake 15-20 min. Broil for a few minutes. Yum!

    Crock Pot BBQ Pulled Pork
    A pork roast with a can of root beer mix quite well throughout the day. Drain and add BBQ sauce when done. Thanks to Meijer/Kroger/Costco, pretzel buns take them to the next level.

    Egg Sandwich
      Don't let me fool you, we have egg sandwiches at least once a week. (Homemade that is.) 

      What are your staples for a quick and easy dinner?