What’s Your Word? My 2020 Non-Resolution…

Well here I am and another year has passed.  I have no idea how it’s possible for time to march on at the speed of light, but it certainly does.  As with every year, I like to reflect and look back on what my year, and the year of my family looks like.  I want to see what we can do to live our best lives.  That’s the goal here, right?

I just finished out the holiday season with loads of family in town.  We ate, drank, laughed until our cheeks hurt, and had a wonderful time being together.  It really was the most wonderful of holiday seasons.   Now the decorations are being packed away and it’s time to clean, organize, and refresh, which I love.

But with the family here, and all of the entertaining, comes NO sleep.  I’m an insomniac by nature, and when I’m feeling overwhelmed, it hits ten-fold.  I’m tired, like down to my bones tired. So as I lay there the other night wide awake again, I reflected.  Here’s what I came up with.

Since 2013, I have been choosing a word to focus on throughout the year.  I think about all of the ways that I can improve myself, and the ways I can be a better wife, mom, sister, friend, and the list goes on.  As I lay there, I thought about a blog I wrote quite a while back, called “Dear Younger Me!”  And I got to wondering what my twenty something year-old self might think of my almost forty-eight year old self.  I thought about the way that I cook, and entertain as much as I possibly can.  I thought about the way I love people so much through my food.  I thought about how my life long love for design and decorating has transferred into a job change, where I am happier than I have been in such a long time. I thought about setting a beautiful table, and wishing my mom were here to see it, and if she would be proud of me. But most of all, I thought about the fact that I am absolutely certain that that 20 year-old would be thoroughly impressed.

I don’t say that to boast, I say that because I am my own worst enemy, I think many of us are.  I am so hard on myself, and I forget to give myself grace, which I desperately need.   But I lie there in bed feeling so completely excited and happy at how beautiful the house looked, how wonderful the food was, and how utterly blessed I was, and am, to have such an incredible family to love and to cherish that tears ran down my cheeks.  I could not be more pleased with where I am in my life, and all that I have accomplished. I don’t think I ever could have imagined that this is where my life would be all those years ago. I’m one lucky girl!! Now does this mean I don’t have a way to go? No!  Does this mean that I am no longer hard on myself? No! Does this mean I won’t have to talk myself off a ledge multiple times this year?  Umm, most certainly not.  It just means that life is too short to be so hard on myself.  I have to remember that if I could go back in time and look into my future, that young woman would be pleased with what she sees, I just know she would.  So go there!  Really look at yourself!  I think you will feel the same.  But if for some reason you don’t, then think about the way you can get to that place of happiness and love of yourself.

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A little older and a little wiser!

Last year my word was forgiveness.  I needed to forgive others, and I needed to forgive myself.  Here is last year’s blog  if you missed it, but this year after pondering, thinking, praying, and wondering what word would speak to me, grace is what came into my head and would not leave.  I must give myself grace.  I must find grace.  Grace to fail, grace to achieve, grace to feel, really feel, the things that I need to.  Grace as a Christian is “the free and unmerited favor of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings.” Another way to look at it is as simple as courteous goodwill.  So that is what I am going to focus on in this new year.  I hope to allow grace into my life, and trust that I am also worthy of grace.  After all, I believe that we are ALL worthy of grace.

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Cheers! Now get out there and sparkle!!

Happy New Year!  I hope that you find a word that speaks to you and can help you live your best life.  Thanks for following along with me on all of my adventures this year. I cannot tell you how much I love and appreciate you.  Now go kick 2020’s ass!! I mean it! I’m talking to you.  Get out there and kill this year in the best way possible.  We are not promised tomorrow, so don’t wait.  It may be too late.

Cheers, so much love, and lots of grace in this new year!

xoxo, Deb

A Christmas Table of Green and Gold

Christmas is just a blink away and that means that it is time to get my table in order.  Making Christmas Eve dinner, and creating an elegant space in which we get to eat this amazing dinner, is by far my favorite event of the year.  I LOVE Christmas!! Let me repeat that!  I LOVE Christmas, and creating traditions with my own family is something I take great pride in.  There is such a feeling of magic at this time of year. I light the candles, we sit down to dinner, and my heart explodes with happiness, and love!

Our Christmas Eve tradition started with my mother’s family, then it was passed to my mother, and now to me.  I cherish that I get to host this wonderful evening, even though both of these amazing women are no longer with me.

I dream about Christmas tables all year long, yes I’m a weirdo!  I think about beautiful dishes, what colors I want to use, and what my overall theme will be.  As with any table that I create, it is usually inspired by one great décor piece, or a china pattern, and from there, my wheels start to turn.

If you have been following me for a while, you know that I’m a sucker for a beautiful dish, and this year I aquired a large set of dishes when family friends sold their home.  They are all white and gold, but the ones that helped to inspire my table this year have gold stars.  Most years I have used lots of traditional green and red, which I adore, but I wanted to change it up, and keep things a bit more neutral with lots of greenery.

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Such a wonderful and festive set of dishes that I get to share!

Another wonderful piece that inspired me was a darling grey and white buffalo check table runner from my favorite local boutique. My sister was in town over Thanksgiving and she wanted to pop in.  I saw it, and new it was the perfect anchor for my table. It was the last one, and it was on sale, so I guess it was meant to be.  Well, at least that’s what I’m telling myself.

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The perfect buffalo check table runner to anchor my Christmas design!


Now to the good stuff. It was fairly simple to create this centerpiece, and it was all done with faux greenery so I don’t have to worry about it drying out and leaving needles everywhere.  First I put down my buffalo check runner.  Next, I had two different strands of garland that I wove together.  The first is a seeded eucalyptus garland, and the second is a more traditional pine needle garland.  You can use any kind you have on hand, or you like, and you simply intertwine them. These two garlands were more than enough to create fullness for my centerpiece.  I did want a little more length and texture, so I then tucked in a few longer icy covered pine stems at each end.  The centerpiece was finished off with white antlers, extra pinecones, and some bright orange dried persimmons.  Decorating with dried fruit has literally been done for centuries. It is something that I think gives my table a rustic, and vintage feeling. I have never used orange on my Christmas table, but it paired perfectly with the gold and green.

For the place settings, as I mentioned above, my inspiration was my new white plates with gold stars.  I used two different salad plates, some with stars, and some without. To make the place settings extra festive they have a beautiful topper. I rarely use napkin rings for napkins, and to create a bit of whimsy on each plate, I added some wonderful greenery stems, then put a bit of pine into my gold antler napkin rings to top the greenery. I love the pop of green and gold on the white plates. And see those sweet stemless champagne flutes? They were a present to myself because I am a sparkles, as in champagne sparkles, kind of girl.

I am completely smitten.

Here are a bundle of pictures to show you how this was created and as always, shoot me any questions so I can help you create this table design. I have sources, if available,  listed below!  Thanks for stopping by and have a beautiful holiday celebrating with all those you love.  Remeber to be present in the moment.  Time goes so quickly, so don’t let a second pass without you holding those you cherish close.

Cheers, Merry Christmas, and thank you for following along with me!

xoxo Deb

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My Neutral Thanksgiving Table Design

The holidays are upon us and that means entertaining and lots of company.  For me, there is nothing that brings me more pleasure.  I love to welcome family and friends into our home, and I want my home to look picture perfect.  Creating a beautiful environment in which to entertain is so much fun, but it also means planning ahead so I can be present in each moment, alleviate stress, and keep from losing my mind! (Although I make no promises!)

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Winston says “Come on in, he’s happy you’re here!”

This year when I began thinking about what I wanted to create, I was feeling lots of neutral vibes!  Last year my Thanksgiving table was filled with bold yellow sunflowers, feathers, and greens, and although I loved it, this year I decided to change gears.  But first and foremost, I didn’t want to spend a lot of money, so I went shopping in my own home.  Click here to see last year’s post!

I grabbed chippy wooden pillars, neutral leaf stems, antlers, lots of white pumpkins, silver and white candlesticks, two navy and white vases, and a burlap runner.   I also chose to use red and white woodland napkins, white plates, my brown woven placemats, gold and silver flatware, and my crystal stemware. I use many of these items over and over in my table designs, and all of this I have on hand.

To make my table really special I did want to find a few new items. The first item I purchased was a unique wooden lantern from my favorite local boutique, The Gingham Buffalo.  Then shortly thereafter while perusing one of my favorite Instagram pages, Purple Rose Home, I saw the most amazing rustic maple leaves.  I was sold! As with any design, I usually have one or two items that inspire me, and that was definitely the case with these pieces.  From there, I put together my plan.

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This beautiful and unique lantern can be used for every season!
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The rustic leaf, that inspired the look!

I began by simply laying down my thin burlap runner.  I like using burlap as a base because it’s a bit rustic, and neutral in color.  It goes with anything, and can be dressed up, or used casually.

Next, I placed my new wooden lantern in the center.  I knew that I was going to use my favorite white velvet pumpkins here, but then I had an idea.  I was fortunate enough to get some beautiful silver heirloom pieces recently that belonged to my husband’s grandmother, and I decided to incorporate one of her pieces into the centerpiece.  Adding some personal and special family items to your table, really helps solidify the reason for the season. I filled the silver bowl with the velvet pumpkins, added antlers, and the centerpiece was complete.

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I used the silver bowl as the base to hold my velvet pumpkins.

Now on to the rest.  I added all of my candlesticks and wooden pillars, placed pumpkins on the pillars at varying heights, and then added my leaves and some fresh flowers in the vases.  The entire centerpiece took me about twenty minutes to put together, and I couldn’t be happier with the outcome.  Here’s a view before I added the place settings.

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The centerpiece before the table was set.

I don’t want to bore you with a tutorial of every single step, but here are lots of photos so that you can see every detail.  I hope this helps to inspire your Thanksgiving table, and I’ll be back soon to share my “how to survive” guide you if you are hosting this year.

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The natural placemats are a great backdrop for the place setting.
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Starting to add the setting.

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The places are set!

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A view from above!
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Candlelight sets the mood.


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A close up of the antique mantle.
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We are ready for our Thanksgiving guests!

Please shoot any questions you have to me.  Some products are linked, and others are items I’ve had for years, so direct links are not available, but I’m happy to guide you in the right direction.

Cheers and Happy Tablescaping!! xoxo Deb

The One Room Challenge™ Fall 2019 Glamorous Bedroom Reveal



Well here we are kids.  After six weeks of living in chaos, having a seriously displaced seventeen-year-old daughter, and a lot of blood, sweat, and tears we have made it to the end of the One Room Challenge.  I’m not gonna lie, I’m thrilled to be here.  I began this process with one very specific, and lofty goal, and that was to create a design that was filled with drama and luxury, incorporate my daughters love of dance and art, fill the space with warmth and softness, but also make it glamorous, hence the “Gotta Have Glam” title.  I believe that we hit every single mark, and the outcome is truly special.

Here are the links to my previous blogs in case you missed anything :

Week 1: The Plan/  Week 2: The Choices/  Week 3: Paint and Floors

 Week 4: The Wallpaper Dilemma/ Week 5: It’s Coming Together

I want to take you back to where we began.  She had a great space, but it hadn’t been updated since we moved into our home six years ago.  The furniture that had been moved from our previous home was not suited for a teenager. It was time to give her a beautiful space, and also a create a room that can double as a guest room when she leaves for college.


The bed and main wall.
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Great windows
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The dated ceiling fan

The Inspiration

I knew that I wanted to do some sort of feature wall with wallpaper, and I also knew that I wanted to use a floral pattern. I had seen many different prints on design jobs for the design firm I work for, as well as countless images scouring the internet, but I hadn’t found THE one just yet. I knew that I loved several rose-covered papers, so that was in my head.  However, because this was my daughters room I certainly wanted to include something that she loved, so we began to look together.  When we came across the image of the chosen wallpaper, we both stopped in our tracks, and knew that this was the winner.  Our inspiration for the room was born!  Here is the image we saw.


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Dramatic Wallpaper (Image courtesy of etsy)

I mean, am I right?  It is just perfect in every way.  After choosing the feature wall everything else fell into place.  With the main wall being black, I knew that I needed to choose other elements that were light, and warm.  I needed to create a design with balance. The light linen walls, the bedding, the incredible chandelier, and the neutral rug did just that.  Here is what my final plan came to be; a dramatic and oversized chandelier, linen bedding with a ruffle detail, an area rug with a worn pattern, neutral main walls, new flooring that could withstand a lot of wear, a platform bed and low bedside tables, navy velvet drapes, brass curtain rods, brass lamps, and vintage accents.

One room challenge feature grid


Now to the best part, and what you’ve been waiting for.  Here is the finished bedroom design.  I was able to incorporate some antique pieces we already had, as well as her favorite artwork from the old room.  The result is everything we hoped for and more.

A perfect combination or drama and warmth
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The floral backdrop is feminine and lovely.
A Front View
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Throw pillows add wonderful texture to the space.

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Night time looks good on her!
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I think I may move in!
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Vintage vanity details.


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A repurposed dresser with high gloss pink and brass. How about that reflection?
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Her great-great grandmother’s chair and her favorite Degas reproduction.
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More details of the vanity.
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Brass accents, and low tables.
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One of her many pairs of pointe shoes.
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Another angle
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This chandelier is a show-stopper!

It’s hard not to share one hundred different photos, because I love them all so much. But most of all, I love this young woman who is the WHY behind the room.  I think it reflects all of the amazing talents and qualities that she has.  And now, she can move the heck back in, YIPPEE!!

See the source list for this entire project below!  I am so thankful to the One Room and Challenge (see the featured designers here!) and Better Homes and Gardens  the media sponsor for this amazing event!   Head on over to see all of the other guest participants here!

I am so grateful to all of you who followed me along on this journey, and provided so much encouragement. I am also beyond thankful for my husband Nate who was my general contractor for this project. I could not have done it without his help and willingness to demolish, lay flooring, roll paint, build, and hang everything with me.  Through this process I have grown as a designer, unleashed a boat load of creativity, and gained tremendous confidence in my abilities.  I can’t wait to see what’s in store for Spring.  Now I’m off to drink an entire bottle of Veuve Clicquot!  Cheers! 

xoxo Deb

The dresser, vanity, chair, all art work, white fur pillows, additional lighting, and any other item not in source list was previously purchased and no link is available. The black and pink paint colors were both custom paint from Behr.

One Room Challenge

Transitioning the Seasons: Tips and Tricks

Well November first hit, and in usual form Christmas threw up all over social media.  Now I say this is jest, because I for one am a Christmas junkie.  Nate and the kids like to have a little fun at my expense because I literally lose my mind.  If there is a hall to be decked or a tree to be trimmed, I’m in.  I start staring at dozens of pages on Instagram, and scouring Pinterest to get my plan together.  But how do I keep Thanksgiving at the forefront, but begin to transition into my most beloved time of year?  Believe it or not, with just a few simple changes, it works rather easily.

I host Thanksgiving most years, so as far as my dining table is concerned that stays mostly adorned with Fall until the weekend after, but then it’s game on.  But by adding just a few pieces of greenery, some wooden deer and trees to my mantle, a simple garland here and there, and some antlers, the house still has a mostly Fall feel, yet has peeks of the season to come.

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This is the current view of my Thanksgiving table. I will share more of how I created this look soon. The greenery on the antique mantle is a great transitional look.

I don’t want to forget Thanksgiving, but I also want to have time to enjoy the festive and beautiful decorations, so it’s really hard not to rush. And this year Thanksgiving is late, with the fourth Thursday falling on the 29th, so that’s a bit tricky.  This year will be a little bit different than in previous years because pops of Christmas will surely come out sooner than before.

Now to the plan.  Adding greenery is a great transitional tool.  By adding greenery, like seeded eucalyptus, or pine branches, it feels more like winter, but doesn’t scream Christmas.  It creates a feeling of warmth, but greenery is so versatile you can add literally anything to it, to change from one season to the next.  Mix fall leaves in and you can style your table for Thanksgiving.  Add some snowy branches and ornaments, and Christmas comes to life.   Greenery, both faux and real are a big hit. Check out how I used my greenery here.

Next, I love trees, snowy trees, cotton trees, wooden trees, sparkly trees, give me all the trees.  Adding simple trees to your mantle, shelf, table, or entryway starts to add a winter vibe.  The great thing is trees go perfectly with pumpkins, so there’s no problem using them for fall. Here are some ways that I use my trees.

Now how about antlers!  Do you love them as much as I do?  I have used them in my arrangements for years, but right now you can find them everywhere.  I use them with greenery, in table centerpieces, with pumpkins and leaves, and of course mixed in to all of my Christmas décor.  I have white ones, and I have many that look authentic.  They add a bit of whimsy, and fun, and are totally versatile.  Give them a try in your transitional décor.  I think you’ll be pleased with the look.  Here are a few ways I use them.

In the end, use what you have, shop your own home.  Add what you love.  Keep it simple. It’s true that less is more.  Remember what the reason for the season is.  Be thankful and don’t sweat the small stuff.  I know it will be beautiful.

I’ll be back with my Thanksgiving table tutorial, and my how to survive turkey day timeline if you’re hosting, so stay tuned.  This time of year is about those we love, spending time together, and making memories, so never lose sight of that.

See ya, soon.

xoxo Deb


One Room Challenge™ Fall 2019 Week 5: Blending Old and New


Well we have officially made it to week 5 of the One Room Challenge, can I get an AMEN!!?? First and foremost, if you missed any of my previous weeks, here they are! Week 1, Week 2Week 3Week 4  I am so grateful for this opportunity and to our media sponsor Better Homes and Gardens

I am feeling really good about where we are, but I am sure I will go into a full blown panic as the reveal gets closer and I realize all that I still need to accomplish. It will come together, I think!!


Because the bulk of the room is complete, this week I focused on organizing the bedding and décor that will be added for the final reveal.  One big change last week was that we had some wallpaper issues, and we were going to add crown.  But as with any project, you assess as you go, and we discovered that the crown would cover part of the wallpaper mural, so it was a big fat NO for me on the crown.  My hubs was actually sad, as he got a new saw that he wanted to play with, but that’s how it goes.  I have plenty of projects for the saw!  Luckily, I was able to mask the issue with black paint, and all is well.  I need to wait for the big reveal to show you the completed wall, but I can hardly stand it! It’s just so amazing! Here’s a sneak peek, without giving up the entire surprise.

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You only get a tiny peek! I want to save a little something for the final reveal!!

Now on to this week. The goal is to look at what I will placing in the space and how it will work together.  One of my favorite things to do is combine elements of old and new.  I am a serious old house and old “stuff” addict.  I love everything about old spaces and things.  I love high ceilings and heavy wood trim.  I love hardwood floors and one-hundred-year-old rosettes. I love seeing a piece and breathing new life into it.  I love thinking about something old and wondering what it would say if it could talk.  I love antiquing and finding treasures.  It’s seriously one of my favorite things ever. Although my house is not that old, I do my best to fill it with pieces that reflect both my love for old, but also my great appreciation for modern elements as well.

This room remodel needs to be a reflection of my daughter, and her style.  She is an artist, a dancer, and a free spirit, but she is also intellectual and seriously smart.  She is cold all the time, like her mama, so she needs cozy blankets, and soft throws.  She is a voracious reader, so we need task lightly, and she needs a space to get ready for all her upcoming commitments. I want it to feel like her, and reflect her.  It should be elegant, feminine, and timeless.  So how the heck do I achieve all of that? Well, very carefully.

Here she is (one photo has me, in case you have no idea who is behind these words!) See what I mean? She’s got serious style!!

The great thing is that she also loves pieces that have history and meaning as well.  I chose a modern bed, but we will also have her great-great-grandmother’s antique chair in the corner.  We will have modern side tables, and lamps, but they will cozy up to an antique dressing table.  You can mix both old and new, and create a room that is spectacular.  Don’t ever feel like you have to do one or the other.  Find a few things that tie the room together and you can’t go wrong.

Don’t rule out a piece of furniture that you think is too old, give it a new coat of paint or stain, (unless it’s antique wood, I will die if you paint original wood, literally die, refinish it in that case!) . But bring it back. Give it a new purpose and a new place. Find ways to mix in antique photos even if the side table is modern.  Use your grandmother’s chair, but add a stylish pillow! It can all work beautifully and succinctly.  Next week I will be sharing LOTS of photographs for the reveal, and I hope you love it as much as and Emma and I do!!

For now, here’s the cozy corner.  These are the linens and pillows that will find their new resting place this week. This is her favorite Degas reproduction that will be hung next to the antique chair.  It will all come together.

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Each item will be placed with purpose, as it was chosen with purpose! I can hardly wait to share the final reveal.  Stay tuned, it is going to be really spectacular, and so darn special.  Thanks so much for following along, and please head on over to see all of the featured designers, and guest participants at One Room Challenge their designs are so inspiring.

Cheers,  now let’s go head into week 6 with style!

xoxo Deb


One Room Challenge™ Fall 2019 Week 4 “Gotta Have Glam” Teen Bedroom Makeover

In case you missed Week 1,Week 2, or Week 3 here they are!!

Well, as promised in the challenge, this week has been the hardest.  The self-adhesive wallpaper, although beautiful, is much trickier than I ever thought that it would be. I needed more primer, and more hands on deck.  Although the panels appeared to match when we laid them out, when maneuvering them on the wall, they did not line up the way they should.  When life throws you lemons, apparently you cut the top off of the second panel and decide to fix it with crown molding, yep we’re now adding crown.  I think that the final result will be amazing. Hindsight’s twenty-twenty, but if I ever use this type of product again I will lay the panels out, and either tape them lightly across the top, then cut the excess top area off, or I will use a chalk line, and again trim them to match. If I had realized they were just the slightest bit off, it would have saved us so much time, and me countless four letter words. But nonetheless the paper mural is up and I must say, it is going to blow your ever-loving mind!

So on to the fun things.  The bedside tables arrived and are put together, the lamps are here, and are exactly what I had envisioned.  The bed has come and although we need to get it set up, we are not moving it in until the crown is completed first.  The best news of all is that my back-ordered bedding came!!   Praise baby Jesus, it is here.  I have a very specific design idea for this space and I am telling you that my vision is really coming together.

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The bedside tables and the lamps are just what I wanted! Of course I took a vase of flowers up! I needed to feel like progress was made.

Emma, my daughter, has also had a hand in choosing items in the design, and I’m so lucky that not only does she have impeccable taste and a great sense of style, she is also a talented painter.   Remember that wallpaper that was giving us a fit, well when it was slightly a bit off, she painted on the design so that you can’t see where it didn’t line up. Thank goodness for my artist.  Painting, other than one color on flat walls,  is NOT a skill that I possess.

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She is adding in painted touches to fix the imperfections.

This week was definitely about starting to see the results of all our work, and I must say, it’s really fun.  I told her the other day that I think this will be the prettiest room in our house.  I may need to sit in there all the time and work, instead of down in our living room.  Even yesterday, my hubby went on about the flooring and how we should replace it in other rooms.  Yay! He doesn’t want to kill me!! LOL!

The goals for this week, although not all completed, were close.  The end is in sight, and the project continues to move forward as we are checking things off of the list.  Here are a few more shots of our progress.  Not all of the pieces are placed properly, but at least you get an idea.

I am also thinking about accessories for the space, and I will be shopping for items within my own house.  I have plenty, and at this point we need to “stop the bleeding” as my husband would say.  The budget needs to stay on track. Shopping my home will be fun because it gives you a new way to look at old items.  I used to do this when the kids were little, hide toys for a bit, then switch them out.  It was like Christmas for them. I have lots of candlesticks, antlers, vases, pillows, and so many things that can go in the room. Shopping my own home will be fun, and cost effective.  Try it, you just might like it.

I hope that helps you get a feel for our week 4 progress.  To see the featured designers and all of the guest participants, head to the One Room Challenge. As I’ve said before, the talent is amazing!

Thank you also to Better Homes and Gardens for being an amazing media partner and allowing us to share our designs!

Catch you in week 5! xoxo Deb