Happy Friday, friends! How has it already been one month since my last Noteworthy post? Time is flying, but also seems to be standing still during this quarantine. Weird times! Emmett and I have been spending many hours outside putting together our outdoor spaces (like our balcony pictured above), keeping up with regular landscaping, exterior home maintenance, and making little updates here & there. Basically, we’re taking every opportunity to spend time outside of our home, without leaving our home. It’s amazing what fresh air and sunshine can do for your attitude. We’re lucky to have had excellent weather lately. Anyway- click through for inspiring links, renovation updates, future plans, favorite products, and more!
First up… renovation updates. I’ve had lots of questions from readers wondering what we’re up to and what we’ll be tackling next. To be honest, we’ve been crossing those pesky little items off the to-do list. You know… the ones we’ve been putting off: caulking, touch up paint, swapping a few fixtures, keeping up with regular maintenance, and most recently- leveling our backyard and installing sod, which was no easy feat. The sod is in and seems to be doing great, so we’re crossing the backyard drainage issue off the list. So what’s next?
- We need to rent or build scaffolding to swap our entryway chandelier in the coming weeks. I’m very excited for that!
- We’re planning to finally finish a guest bedroom we’ve been putting off (which includes new doors, millwork, wallpaper, lighting, paint, and furniture… the whole shebang, excluding carpet). We’re hoping to wrap that up this summer.
- We’re also trying to figure out just how many exterior projects we want to tackle this year (perhaps exterior paint, a garage trellis, additional landscaping, extending our fence to gain more yard & greenspace for the dogs, the list goes on…)
- We have plenty of little tasks left on the list to keep us busy, too… painting, filling nail holes, cleaning, and just keeping up with the house in general.
- As for the “big project”… we haven’t decided what that will be quite yet. The guest bedroom should be a fairly large project, so that will be the next finished room reveal!
My friend Cathy shared her best tips for styling open shelves in the kitchen. We share the same mindset and perspective when it comes to kitchen styling, so this post was spot on for me! We only have the two floating shelves above our coffee bar in our kitchen, but they work hard for us (and look gorgeous, if I do say so myself). It’s a functional vignette that makes me smile…
This house in Puglia is what my cottage dreams are made of! Does anyone else have the itch to travel now more than ever? Emmett and I were supposed to be in Alaska fishing this week. Italy was also on our list this year, but I’m doubtful that will happen. Our Hawaii anniversary trip is still on the books this fall, but we’re not getting our hopes up. Back in January we decided 2020 would be “our year of travel”. HAHA! Until we can jet away, I’m viewing alllll the home tours online, located in the places I want to visit.
Emmett’s dad is actually supposed to come visit at the end of the month, but it’s up in the air as of now- given the current pandemic. He and his high school buddy are planning to ride their motorcycles across the country and will finish here in Utah and stay with us for a week. Can you tell where Emmett gets his sense of adventure from? It was his idea to do a three week camping trip across the country when we were in college. We spent almost three weeks on the road, camping together and visited nearly all of the National Parks.
Ready for some real talk? Emmett & I have been brainstorming our next business “project” or renovation. We imagine we’ll be in this house for quite awhile (which we’re really happy about… after all- it’s a LOT of house to renovate), but we have started saving for a side project. Do we renovate another house to use as a vacation home / Airbnb? If so, where would that be located? We even took a virtual tour of a super cool house boat in Washington we seriously considered a couple weeks ago. It was beautiful and vintage, but would’ve been a total money pit… and at this stage, we’re just dreaming and brainstorming. Just curious- what would you be interested to see from us next? I’m partial to a beach cottage, but a mountain cabin makes sense given our location and would be the obvious choice. Maybe something of a smaller scale could be cool? A camper renovation we could adventure in? A boat? Sometimes I wish we had water nearby. Who knows! I’m ready to stretch my creative muscle and do something weird & different in the future. Brainstorming has me excited, but that’s all it is for now- a conversation. Emmett likes to change his mind a thousand times and analyze, whereas I just follow my heart and make a fast spontaneous decision.
I get a ton of questions about millwork. I’ve posted about it on a couple occasions (here and here), but unfortunately there is not a one size fits all solution. It totally depends on the architecture of your home… and what works in mine, probably won’t fit yours. Four years ago I recommended a book on the blog, and it’s still one I reference all the time. One of my designer teachers recommended it to me years ago and I still rely on it. If you’re updating your home, do yourself a favor and spend $8 on the Get Your House Right book.
Next up- my recent purchases… we’ve honestly been in saving mode around here, but I do have some notable things to share:
- This ribbed glass hurricane + these pillar candles // I’ve been wanting one of these for our coffee table, but didn’t want to spend a ton of money. I’ve been on a big candle kick lately… I think it’s soothing for me during this weird time.
- These tan drops + this gradual tan lotion // I caved and bought the self tanning stuff because I’m looking rather pasty and these come highly recommended by my pal Jenny Komenda. The two of us have been chatting all things beauty lately and I’ve kind of given up during quarantine (truth), but am hoping a “natural glow” will make me feel better without fixing my hair or doing my makeup everyday (which basically equates to tinted moisturizer and brow gel, haha).
- Two more pairs of these leggings // Let’s be real- I’ve been living in leggings. It’s my new uniform while sheltering in place. I bought a pair of these last year at TJ Maxx, loved them *almost* as much as my Lulu’s, and for the $25 price tag- recently decided to buy two more pairs. They’re that good! Check out over 6k shining reviews on Amazon.
- These fancy cocktail cherries // I 100% blame this purchase on Will Brinson. Have you been following House of Brinson’s cocktail hour on IG everyday? They make my day and we’ve definitely been partaking in craft cocktails during quarantine… we even bought this cocktail & mini food smoker! Anyway, he recommended these cherries and they really are worth it. I feel like a legit bartender at a swanky, high-end restaurant. E & I will emerge from this as skilled bartenders, or at least we’re giving it our best shot. Ha!
- My beloved pizza peel // You probably spotted this in my rosemary flatbread recipe post. We’ve been doing “Pizza Fridays” and have been getting into pizza making lately, but I honestly love the way this looks hanging in our kitchen. I also love that I was able to support an artist / woodworker in Ohio who makes these.
I don’t really discuss finances and the challenges of owning a small business as much as I should here on the blog (it’s kind of boring to me & I’d rather talk design), but I HAVE to give my girl Kyla a big shoutout. A couple weeks ago she posted about how big companies ended up with the small business PPP loans. You might have already heard about this because the post immediately went viral, and she followed up with a thank you / beautiful tribute to small business owners. Anyway, in addition to health concerns during this pandemic, our economy is also suffering. I’ve been trying to do my part and highlight more small businesses that I love. I hope that shows! I just wanted to share her recent viral posts because I’m very proud of her for making noise on behalf of the little guys. If you’re a small business owner or supporter- this is really encouraging.
This article sharing 7 moving tips to help you navigate relocating during Covid-19 seemed fitting, because I know many of you are in the process of moving right now. After all- spring and summer are the seasons for that! My sister and her family are about to move into their new home, and I know many readers and friends are in the same boat. Hopefully you’ll find these tips helpful and assuring.
This is usually the time of year when Emmett & I take advantage of our beautiful state, pack up the dogs, and go camping with friends. We’re big on the outdoors and adventuring, but 95% of the counties here in Utah are still limiting camping to county residents only. If you’re also itching to get outside, camp, hike, and explore… check out this post: 13 national parks you can virtually hike to avoid cabin fever. Two of them are located here in Utah.
Are you tired of my rambling yet? I’m guessing yes. I hope you all have a lovely weekend filled with sunshine and fresh air. We’ll most likely tackle more projects, enjoy our patio, and spend time outside. Xo, Sarah