It’s no surprise that these are the times for social media influencers to thrive. It’s 2019 and the internet is the place to be if you want exposure. Everyone and their mom has some form of social media, including Instagram. Speaking of Instagram, there’s a trend that I’ve been wanting to addressRead More
So not too long ago I shared our DIY modern firewood storage wall rack! We absolutely loved it UNTIL we started Christmas shopping and decided to make a practical change. Although we will miss this temporary DIY project, we love the changes we made in our dining room even more.
We just couldn’t justify the waste of space on that wall, when it had greater potential. If you’re new around here, we live in an older home, 1963 to be exact, and we have absolutely zero storage whatsoever. No hallway closets, no walk in bathrooms, nothing. In fact our children (or guest bathroom as it’s been referred to as) is bigger than our ‘master’ bathroom. So we must create all of the storage that we currently have.
I gave a little hint on this instagram post a few days ago.
So moving along. If you haven’t read our Journey to minimalism, I highly recommend you check it out to fully understand this slight last minute design change. I could probably update that post, but you’ll understand more in a second.
Also, because I love the process of before, during, progress, and after photos let’s go through a visual of what this space has looked like. Progression is such an amazing part of design. It’s ever evolving, and I’m excited to FINALLY say that four years later (almost 5!) we have discovered our style for this home of ours. It feels so good to have the visions we we’re searching for to finally come to life. Your home does not happen overnight.
First up…what our dining room looked like when we moved in vs now. And why we made this switch.
So our home is pretty empty. All of our children’s items/toys are outdoor related so they’re stored in the garage. HOWEVER, one thing we buy in excess are family games. These are any types on board games, and they range in age group because of the ages of our children. We previously had our games stored in this DIY credenza, but even with a lock, the toddlers found a way in there.
We wanted to eliminate the games getting messed up, or chewed up by our puppy so we made the executive decision for this new dining room cabinet to be our new game storage. That way we can keep the games with smaller pieces (like battleship for example) up and out of reach of little fingers. The credenza will be used for blanket storage for the couch from now on.
We opted to put the firewood storage on the top of the cabinet to also keep it out of the way (aka toddlers). I opted to paint it, and used this color, which I absolutely love. The ceiling/fireplace need to be cosmetically touched up, but the biggest burden right now aesthetically is still our floors. Our orange floors.
If you’ve sanded your floors by renting materials, I would love your to hear about your experience. Should we attempt to DIY them…or hire it out. That is the question. Until then here’s a few more angles.
Thank you for stopping by and reading today! I also moved the frame from above our credenza and put it to the right of the fireplace. Excited to show you the artwork I’m working on for it.
So I never thought I would be doing a guest bathroom update this soon, HOWEVER, I wanted to touch base on a few things I’ve learned since not only ‘completing it’, but having it shared on different websites.
If you’re reading this and you’re a blogger, then you already know the thrill of having something you created shared with the world. It’s such an honor and the recognition is equally as gratifying after all the hard work. This bathroom, like the other rooms in our home, was a labor of love. Completely taking it down to the bare bones and starting fresh.
With the excitement of our guest bathroom being shared, I was naive to think that not everyone would agree with our design choices. I think this naive thinking was for sure from the adrenaline high of finishing a project. HOWEVER, I wanted to share what I took away from the comment section of our shared bathroom, and how I used what I originally viewed as ‘criticism’ as helpful design advice that I’m ultimately thankful for. At first I let the comments get to me…then a few weeks went by and the light bulb turned on.
Keeping an open mind for sure worked in my favor here, even if it wasn’t an immediate epiphany.
To show you an example of what I’m talking about, here’s a photo from our final guest bathroom reveal when it was shared, and a current photo. Then I’ll dive into the changes we made and why.
So there isn’t a terribly drastic difference here, however the changes I made were based on not just the comment section alone, but also by some personal research I did on my own. One of the commentators brought attention to the height of my framed photograph. Mainly pointed out how high it was in comparison to the chair rail. At first I was immediately defensive, because I believed it made the room look ‘larger’. If you’re a designer I know you’re eye rolling hard right here. There were multiple comments referencing 7 inches.
Upon doing my own research the average seemed to be roughly 8-10 inches above ‘furniture’ (we'll use the chair rail as our ‘furniture’ in this particular design situation). By hanging at this height you allow the art/photograph to be ‘visually connected’ as opposed to just ‘floating’ too high.
So the first design change I made in our guest bathroom was lowering the framed photograph. I believe this completely changed the look of the bathroom, for the better. I also decided to switch out our photograph for a more impersonal photograph. Someone touched base on it being weird to have a family photo in your bathroom, which I still don’t really agree with, but love this switch.
The next thing I changed was the awkward mirror in our guest bathroom. There wasn’t necessarily too much criticism revolved around the mirror per-say, however I just couldn’t love it after each week passed. The black mirror and the towel hanger just stuck out like a sore thumb.
I decided to switch it out for a large frame less round mirror. Not only did this design switch eliminate the drastic color contrast of the black, but it is HUGE and reflects everything, making the space even brighter. I am loving it.
I’m now currently on the hunt for a muted green faux cactus to fill this beautiful pot we have hanging in the corner. Here are a few of my favorites.
Thanks for stopping by and reading today. I hope this post shows you, that not everything, even if you deem it as ‘criticism’ has to be harmful. The negative can easily be turned into a positive if you allow it to. Don’t let your ego get the best of you and be open to others opinions, you never know if could help you in the end like it did for me and our guest bathroom!
No judging eyes allowed, but this is a behind the scenes of what our Tupperware “organization” looked like. Every time we would put the dishes away, we risked our lives as tupperware would literally fall out like an avalanche and smack us in the face. I know this photo is making my mom cringe right now, because her tupperware cabinet is something else. I mean absolutely immaculate. Last night I had had enough and decided it was time to switch up our tupperware situation in exchange for some sanity. However, mess aside, I cannot, absolutely cannot rave about this tupperware more.
It comes in a set of 18, which is SO.MUCH.STORAGE.
The silicone seals have NEVER leaked and are air tight.
Dishwasher, Microwave, Refrigerator safe
Limited, lifetime warranty shall you need it
They also have THIS option as well.
Moving on. So when we designed our kitchen we did three huge drawers on the very end of the kitchen, closer to the dining room, and the rest of the bottoms are deep cabinets. We’re kind of regretting doing so many cabinets vs drawers, because the drawers are so practical in regards to being stack able. The deep cabinets are as luxurious as you can get, so no complaints, but we may swap out one double cabinet for drawers later down the road.
Until now I’ve wanted to keep tupperware as far out of reach as possible because, toddler fingers, however it dawned on me that the drawer would not only be easier as far as storage went, but more practical, as in it won’t fall on our face.
So I removed all our the tupperware from the upper cabinets and transferred it to the drawers, and now I wish I would’ve done this years ago. Here are a few before photos of our kitchen drawers from bottom to top.
The drawers themselves weren’t super un organized or overly filled, but we could definitely consolidate a few things to make room for the tupperware drawer. Here’s a before and after of the upper cabinet.
I plan on getting a few more solid white dishes for this cabinet, but overall it’s more than enough. Don’t want to be extra.
Here are some after shots of the new drawer organization.
Like I said above, I wish I would’ve made this minor change years ago. It’s simple, organized, and won’t land on my face when I’m trying to put dishes away. Here’s a fun drawer .gif for your enjoyment.
So basically I’m here to tell you, that even if you have toddlers in your home, and this option could potentially be a huge mess…it’s worth it for simplifying the entire process of keeping your kitchen clean and organized. Now I can simply drop the tupperware in the correct stacked pile and be done. No more tupperware avalanches to my face.
I hope this post inspired you to tackle a drawer/cabinet in your own home. It doesn’t necessarily have to be tupperware related. It can be a junk drawer where all the random items go to die. It can be a towel closet, anything. Thanks so much for stopping by and reading! I would love for you to connect with us on our Instagram post! Do you have a tupperware drawer? Show them to us by sending us a DM! We’re going to be sharing a few in our stories!
If you’re friends with me on my personal Facebook page, you might have noticed my wall/feed/photo albums have become non-existent. The same goes for anyone who used to follow me on my personal Instagram account. I promise I’m not banishing you from my life, although I did delete everything. You haven’t been blocked from seeing my posts, I’m simply getting a head start on my 2019 goals. This particular goal isn’t one to be joked about, or to quit mid January with a casual, “I’ll try again next year!”. Stick with me, because it’s going to be a jumbled post.
This goal is going to be a life changer, because if change doesn’t happen now, no improvement will be made. It will be completely detrimental to not only mine and Scot’s life, but most importantly our children’s lives.
Like I stated above, this is going to be a long jumbled post, but before I dive in, I want to preface this post with the fact that this is my PERSONAL goal. This post isn’t to create an internal guilt for readers, so I hope it doesn’t come across that way. This post isn’t a form of judgement on your life, or how you choose to live your life, we all have enough shit to deal with in this modern day and age.
I hope you see the intentional drive behind my words, to MAYBE apply them to your life, and reverse the spell we’ve all been put under since social media has exploded in front of our eyes.
I was sitting down last night and this morning just jotting down as many thoughts as possible on the back of my cardboard Ikea membership card packaging. I am as type B as they come, so I’m not a natural list maker, however these thoughts just flooded out of me onto paper effortlessly. Short thoughts, one word thoughts, personal thoughts, questions, points, exhaustion. Exhaustion, pure exhaustion is a great way to sum up the feelings that have just been building and building, this past year in particular. Exhausted with the cliche’, yet chillingly accurate feelings that come with anything linked to social media.
Exhausted trying to balance multiple accounts on multiple social media platforms. Completely burnt out.
Isn’t it insane to think about how much social media is intertwined into our daily lives, and for insomniacs like me, early mornings. Why have we found such a strong friendship/bond with social media, aka our phones? For instance, if you’re a parent (and remember to refer back to my preface about not letting this post or my words allow any form of guilt to creep in), when is the last time you did the following without your phone within reach?
Watched a movie or game/snuggled on the couch
Laying in bed with your kids at night
Riding in the car
Laying in bed with your spouse at the end of the day
That list could potentially be a mile long, however those bullets are enough to make me get a lump in my throat, because #guilt, #guilt, #guilt #GUILTY. Think about it. Rewind back to your own childhood for a second.Now tell me how many times you witnessed your parents sitting in a dark room with a lit up face, completely engulfed in a plastic piece of technology relentlessly scrolling. For hours. Or at one of your sporting events, sitting in the stands looking down at their phone instead of cheering you on? I can’t recall a single time, because they weren’t relevant. Sure ‘phones’ were on the market, and we had land lines, but we didn’t have a world full of iphones, ipads, and CONSTANT stimulation.
If you know me, then you know our children grow up outdoors. We feel very strongly about not letting our children be exposed to anymore technology than they’re already exposed to at school. (Refer back to preface before reading this next sentence, because I know every family is different, and this post is not meant to induce guilt or negative feelings). We don’t believe children need access to phones, or apps, or games in general. This is especially true for one of our children that has a harder time with separating real life and shutting off technology. Technology addiction is a real, and powerful thing. If you have a child that has experienced anger, rage, or sadness due to technology separation then you already understand me. However…
Why as parents are we setting such crucial lifestyles for our children, but not directly applying them to our own lives?
Why do we tell our children they can’t have phones because of the negative toll they take on our minds and emotions, yet as spouses we are laying next to each other in the same bed at night, facing opposite directions, scrolling, scrolling, and scrolling into we drift off to sleep. When and why did the things being displayed on a phone screen take precedence over conversations.
Speaking of conversations, can we touch base on the isolation that comes along with social media for a minute? I cannot remember the last time I had a meaningful face to face conversation with someone. Not to be confused if I see you on a daily basis and exchange a few words, I’m referring to sitting down at dinner together, or a cup of coffee, talking about life and goals for example. I can’t remember the last ‘true’ friend I’ve communicated outside of my iphone. In fact, I can’t even remember the last time I talked to someone, besides my own mother or husband outside of texting. How sad and lonely do those words feel to you, because they feel so down to me.
I used to blame motherhood for how introverted I have become over the last 9 years, but is blaming introverted behavior the real issue here? I don’t think so. I think we have become so comfortable in our ‘online friendships’ that we are
disconnected, yet connected.
I mean Facebook even tells us when it’s our “friends” birthdays. They have single handedly removed the middle man of snail mail, or even a calendar date and replaced it with a friendly reminder. Speaking of dictating our lives, our iphones even tell us how much time we’ve spent on our phone/apps in hopes we will track our time and use it more efficiently. Let that sink it. We can’t even have a Facebook business page, WITHOUT having a personal Facebook page. Therefore you’re ‘trapped’ into believing you cannot get rid of your apps.
Speaking of personal facebook pages. I briefly mentioned above that all of my data, photos, and posts have been deleted off both my personal facebook page, as well as my personal instagram. Do not panic, I have not deleted you, I have not blocked you from my posts, I’m simply simplifying my life to gain the freedom that my brain and emotions deserve and are craving. However, why in doing so did I feel so much anxiety and sadness.
Why would I feel sad about deleting all of my personal data? Is it because I’m a photographer and I’ve lost a hard drive with all my children’s photos before? Is it because it’s relatable to a final farewell? Disconnecting myself even more, and having to put in the extra effort that used to be so effortless with relationship building? For example making friends with everyone you meet on a playground as a child. Starting from square one and forcing yourself outside of your comfort zone. Was it the people pleaser in me to link living a happier life without sharing all the things we’re up to, and the accomplishments we’re achieving to guilt. For example…what is the purpose behind sharing something to social media? Do you sometimes feel as though
“If I don’t share it, why document it?”
I can tell you one thing, all of my friends weren’t looking at my personal VHS tapes of my childhood growing up. I’m going to apply that to present. The now. I don’t need, and also no longer want random people seeing my children grow up.
Today I wanted to step out and share these raw feelings with you, because I truly believe it’s a relevant conversation that flares up every once in awhile on social media, however I never actually see the action behind the ‘quitting social media’ shares. Which is fine, because I get it. It’s a tough step. However, it’s a step that we all deserve to take.
If you’ve made it this far, I love you. I do, because that was a lot. I hope this post sparked some feelings you might have been going back and forth on. Whether that’s past or present. Would love to know what you think in the comments below. I am leaving my blog instagram account open, so would love to connect with you over there, too. If you’re local, a mother, and feeling the same way, I would love to chat in person!
“Do one thing everyday that scares you.” Eleanor Roosevelt.
Happy Friday, friends! I hope you all had a fantastic and productive week. Does anyone else get to the end of the week and have sore arms? Maybe it’s because several of my projects I have going on right now require my arms above my head. It could also be the fact that I need to work out more. It’s most definitely the latter. Regardless DIY is not for the weak, so I’ll just be over here removing crown molding and building muscle.
Today I wanted to share something so fun that we added to the dining room space, and that’s our DIY modern firewood wall storage rack. It was inspired by all my pins on our modern fireplaces board. If you haven’t seen the pins on there, you gotta check it out HERE. I’m obsessed with clean lines and organic feel. This DIY modern firewood wall storage rack was right up my alley.
We didn’t intentionally plan to have this DIY up so fast, but it happened by chance when we were finishing up our fireplace project. I showed Scot my pins on our board and we happened to have some scrap wood leftover in the garage from a few closet shelves we built the boys. We measured the space and literally just made some cuts and screwed onto the wall. My favorite part about this project, is you can literally make it whatever you want.
Here are a few photos in all it’s glory. I planned on doing an in depth tutorial, but like I said, we made cuts and measurements that fit this little spot on our wall, so yours will vary! We used these pieces from Home Depot.
It didn’t originally have the boards going across the front, but I wanted some added support for wood weight. I’m still 50/50 on it so I’m going to let Scot check it out when he gets home. What do you think? I also love that we left it unstained or painted. The plan is to sand down our floors, so this will go with the cleaner/lighter look.
Quick dining room recap while I’m here. I removed the last piece of crown molding on the right side of the room above the load bearing wall we removed. Next I just have to sand down a little mud I put over a few spots and then paint over it. There are a few areas on the ceiling that need patched, but I need to make a run to the store for a few more things.
Thanks so much for stopping by and reading today! I hope this DIY modern firewood storage inspired you to pick up those dusty pieces of scrap wood and create something beautiful!
Pin this image to save for later.
Happy Thursday, friends! We’re almost to Friday and I am feeling so accomplished this week. I think we finally came up with a solid fireplace plan (slightly altered from our original plan), and I can’t wait to share that, but I’m going to wait until the fireplace maintenance comes out to give us the thumbs up. I mentioned on our Instagram that we recently received a quote for a wood burning fireplace insert and it was over $7k. We can’t really justify putting that much money into our fireplace, so we’re confident plan B will suffice.
Aside from that, we’re going to do all the Christmas things this weekend to bring some cheer indoors. I’ve come across so many amazing accounts on Instagram lately and I am loving this community. I also shared with a new friend that we have big goals for 2019 in regards to our website and social media. We want to focus on conversations and interactions vs follower count. Building solid friendships is so fulfilling in this niche, and I’m looking forward to all the new faces we’ll encounter!
However I digress. Let’s get into the exciting news about our dining room progression. I can’t believe I’m even about to say this, BUT, I’m painting a room in our house A COLOR. It has pigment, and isn’t what Scot refers to as ‘insane asylum’. Ha! And guys, can I just be honest for a second, I was totally preparing myself to hate it, but I LOVE IT.
I feel like such an idiot for waiting this long, but I had an epiphany for our exact dining room look, and I’m DETERMINED to make it come to life before Christmas so we can get the full effect.
Today I wanted to share a hack we were able to pull off by recycling what we already had. Here’s a photo of the door that led to our back porch. I rarely post photos of it because it’s so farmhouse it kills me.
This is after I installed the new ‘modern’ mdf trim and didn’t tape so some of it ended up on the door. I have been staring at this door for weeks. Doing non stop research on how I could literally dissect the door to get rid of the ‘x’ and install a solid piece in the center. I’m so glad I didn’t execute that plan because when Scot got home last night the light bulb went off. I told him my dilemma, and naturally he comes up with an instant fix. I LOVE our laundry room door. (All the doors you see in our house currently are the original doors for the exception of our front door). They’re solid wood doors and they’re reliable. Can’t find them this nice nowadays.
So basically we just switched the farmhouse ‘x’ door with the modern door in our laundry room (so that we wouldn’t see the ‘x’ one for now, until we replace it). It was 25 degrees last night, so we got a nice little breeze while taking these heavy bad boys down, but I’m SO freaking stoked for the outcome.
Here’s another photos of the ‘x’ door.
Do you see what I see? It was starchy, unwelcoming, cool, and as far away from that ‘home’ feeling you get when you go to your moms house. We searched and searched for warm dining room tones and had an idea in mind. Scot ran into Home Depot last night and grabbed three samples and 10 color swatches. We painted all three on the wall next to the cabinets, fireplace, and kitchen to assess the situation.
Guys. We found it. We found the COLOR for this space and it’s perfect. Want to see it?
Just for reference here’s a side by side.
(Photo on the left is SOOC with all of our lights on last night around 11:30 pm, the photo on the right is this morning with no lights on!)
Is that not an INSANE difference? This side by side just goes to show that paint colors CAN completely change the feel of a room. Keep in mind the door and walls just have one light coat of paint on here because it was a sample can. The top of the wall isn’t painted because I need to sand where I added mud where our traditional crown molding used to rest.
I still plan on replacing our smaller antlers with a more modern alternative, along with filling up our DIY wood rack. My jaw is still on the ground how much BETTER the walls look painted, especially next to the kitchen back splash. The hardest part about an open floor plan is the flow. Our kitchen cabinets are a slight off white, so we have to accommodate for the lighting. Here’s a shot next to the back splash.
I’m excited to pick up a full gallon today and some sand paper to put the final touches on these walls.
The only things left we need to finish this room are the following:
Sand the hardwood floors down to the original + clear coat them.
Replace our dining room table + chairs.
Paint inside of fireplace and touch up a few of the concrete patches on the fireplace surface.
Art + photographs on the walls.
Install new dining room table light
You can see the orange tones of our current floors, and they’re just not working. We contemplated tackling this DIY ourselves, but after doing some research, we think this might be a great project to outsource in regards to the quick drying poly they would be able to use that wouldn’t cause us to be out of our home for 48 hours.
Thank you so much for stopping by today! If you’re struggling with paint colors in a spot in your home, I hope this post inspired you to step outside of your comfort zone to pick up some new color swatches. My tip for paint colors is to grab as many samples as you can and judge them after they’re on your walls.
When we got home last night and held up the color swatches they not only looked different than they did at Home Depot, but they also looked different holding them vertical to the wall, and horizontal to the wall depending on lighting. It wasn’t until we actually got the colors painted on the wall when we knew which color would work best for this space.
If you could, we would love for you to pin the image below to share our warm tone dining room progress! We’re looking forward to sharing each stage in the next coming days/weeks!
We love supporting makers, creators, stay at home parents all over. The true hustle goes on behind the scenes, and a majority of the time what you see on a feed is the pretty side of being an entrepreneur. Behind the scenes are the messes, the sleep deprived shop owner, and the countless hours it takes to perfect their craft.
I love browsing Etsy. It’s such an inspiring site to see people being their own boss and killin’ it at life (even if they don’t necessarily feel that way sometimes)! Today we wanted to share some of our favorite scandi inspired Etsy shops that you should be following. It’s the best feeling in the world to connect with people, and to know your shop is being seen, so I would love for you guys to go give them a follow on their Instagrams and leave some encouraging words!
Enjoy these shops…
I was browsing Etsy to collect my favorite shops and was instantly in love with her aesthetic. This Nordic Christmas tree garland is so incredibly beautiful. I also had the best conversation with her over on Instagram, and she is a fellow heart mama and I am so glad I connected with you Lauren!
FOLLOW HER ON INSTAGRAM HERE: @toneandstate
FOLLOW HER ETSY SHOP HERE: @toneandstate
If there’s one thing I can appreciate living a minimal lifestyle, it’s PRETTY organization. These multi functional peg boards would be the perfect touch to a child’s room or a garage door entry to hold your keys and coat. Plus, Alex + Noel are based out of my birth state, so they gotta be rad souls!
FOLLOW THEM ON INSTAGRAM HERE: @pickapeg
FOLLOW THEIR ETSY SHOP HERE: @pickapeg
You cannot, I repeat you cannot beat custom art in your home. Support all the local artists you know, of all mediums, across the board. SUPPORT ARTISTS. I can’t press that enough. This piece above is so peaceful, calming, and could effortlessly fit into any space in your home. You have to check out the rest of their portfolio.
FOLLOW THEM ON INSTAGRAM HERE: @tincupdesign
FOLLOW THEIR ETSY SHOP HERE: @tincupdesign
I have a special connection with all things pottery. I met Scot in high school pottery class over 13 years ago, so when I stumbled across Liz’s shop The Lulu Bird, I was instantly in love. I love the muted tones of her pieces! Plus, she has Christmas items listed in her shop, so perfect opportunity to show support and order some new family heirlooms.
FOLLOW HER ON INSTAGRAM HERE: @lizaldag
FOLLOW HER ETSY SHOP HERE: @lizaldag
If you’ve never watched a macrame video, you’re missing out. This is such a beautiful craft, and I give props to anyone that creates these beautiful pieces. I love every single listing in Alyssa’s Etsy shop. Among her amazing pieces are also some Christmas options, so again shop small and make a maker’s day!
FOLLOW HER ON INSTAGRAM HERE: @thymeandtwineagain
FOLLOW HER ETSY SHOP HERE: @thymeandtwineagain
Are you guys as impressed as I am? I know you’ll love all of those highlighted Etsy shops as much as I do! I also hope their craft has inspired you to order something from their shops for Christmas. If you want to see more spotlight posts on artists/makers/creators that I come across please let me know in the comments below!
SHARE THE LOVE + PIN THESE!
Our photo ledges are hands down one of our biggest DIY visits on This Minimal House, and for good reason. It incorporates all the photos your little heart desires. Whether those are personal family photographs, your dogs, artwork, whatever it may be, these DIY photo ledges are a huge hit. You’re guaranteed to make a boring spot in your home come alive with this simple and inexpensive project.
If you want to check out our first photo ledge post you can do so by clicking the button below.
Today I wanted to share a quick photo ledge update in regards to material upgrade. The original project used furring wood that was sanded down to give it a smooth surface. While this was an inexpensive way to complete this project, it didn’t necessarily give us the ‘finished’ look we desired.
While we’ve been busy wrapping up our farmhouse to modern fireplace, we also began replacing all of our old traditional trim work for a more modern trim work. We are doing this by using MDF.
I had a few scraps of MDF left over, so I measured and cut two strips to replace the existing furring strips. This not only blended in with our MDF casings for the hallway, but also with the new MDF baseboards. Another huge advantage to using a nicer material for your finished look, is the fact that we’ll be able to paint the MDF and have a uniform look, as opposed to a painted pine look, which doesn’t look as great.
Tis the season to decorate all the things for Christmas. Well not necessarily in our house, because #minimalists, however we do believe in a great beautiful tree to display. It’s hard to come across great modern, minimal trees. One thing that differs from our older home and newer builder grade homes is ceiling height. We are working with lower ceilings, so a modern tree that isn’t as full as a store or fresh tree is the perfect solution. Think thin.
My dream for our children was to cut down a fresh tree every year, which by the way we’ve only done twice now, and both we’re a fail because I’m deathly allergic to pine…of all things. So basically that meant I was absolutely miserable for the entire month until that thing bit the dust and was dragged to our woods!
Today I wanted to do a round up of five modern faux Christmas trees that cost less than $100. These five Christmas trees are great for not only your main living areas, but also great options, due to size, for a bedroom or bathroom. Some would be great for a main tree option, others great for a ‘decoration’.
Let’s dive in. These are my top 5 favorite modern Christmas trees that won’t break the bank! Click the photos below for the link!
But wait, there’s more! Want some fun minimal inspired Christmas decor to go along with these 5 modern Christmas trees for less than $100? Get the full look with these fun finishing touches!
MINIMAL CHRISTMAS HOME DECOR EXTRAS
We’ve come a long way in the four years we’ve lived in our home. What once was an array of blue paneled walls and $3 blinds, has turned into a minimal space that we pour so much time, energy, and love into. You can’t tell from This Minimal House’s home, or even blog page, but we literally started from the bottom. Gutted rooms down to the studs, worked until 4 am for an ungodly amount of nights. Tarped, taped, scrubbed, scraped, stripped, sanded tirelessly until we made a monumental step forward.
A fun story, in case you’re a new reader here, when we purchased our home, Scot hadn’t even seen it yet! He was at work, and I was out and about looking at houses with our amazing realtor all morning. This house was the last stop of the morning, and five minutes after looking at it I called Scot at work and claimed, “THIS IS IT! THIS IS THE ONE! OUR HOME!”. Needless to say, he didn’t IMMEDIATELY see the same potential I saw, I’m pretty sure his body just started to ache thinking about what was about to begin on this DIY journey. Can you blame him though? That was 5 inch thick wood paneling after all.
So today I want to show you where it all began! The original rooms in our home prior to moving in, so you can grasp just how much progress we’ve made so far in our home. We are so thankful for everyone that takes the time to read our space, and we hope every post encourages you to step out of your comfort zone and tackle something, even the smallest of projects.
While this is a for profit blog, we do everything ourselves. Nothing has been given to us, and we use our hard earned money in every single space. We save where we need to, then get to work. We hope this is relatable to our audience. We strive to be real, honest, and authentic (if you haven’t checked out our almost DIY fireplace fail, then stop what you’re doing and check it out now). Some projects and spaces cost us a little more money, but we’re very conscious about what we put into our home because at the end of the day it’s not about the items you possess, it’s about family and being together. You can also read more about our passion of minimalism in our Journey to Minimalism post here.
Are your eyes ready for this? Enjoy! :)
If there ever was a project that I could take back and start all over on, it would hands down be our fireplace. MAN. What a pain in the ass this entire thing has been, not to mention a painful amount of money that has gone into the trial and error of do it yourself projects. When you have a certain vision for a space in your home, and you don’t receive immediate results it can be a huge bummer. HOWEVER, I believe that we are making waves, and this will all pan out perfectly…even if it almost gave us gray hair and tested our patience along the way.
To back things up a bit, here’s what we started with.
It’s hard to tell the true beauty and potential of that fireplace because of the glamorous blue stained paneling, but work with us here, don’t get distracted. ;) HA!
Our fireplace stayed like this for about two years until I decided to paint it white in an attempt to make it more aesthetically pleasing, like those cream colored pull down blinds. Needless to say the white painted brick fireplace just screamed everything that we’re not into, farmhouse, so it really messed with the surrounding decor as we were torn to work around the fireplace.
This year we said enough is enough. This space is our dining room, and as you can see we’re not working with much, so we needed to brainstorm. The most practical thing on our list? Remove the brick fireplace hearth of course. This might raise a white flag for some because even we didn’t know what we were getting into. Was there anything behind said brick hearth? If we ripped it out would our house crumble (kidding, kind of)? Would we be exposing some old house funk buried beneath the pretty aesthetic that would harm our insides?
Basically we dove in head first, because #YOLO. Here’s a photo of our brick hearth removal, and if you missed that post and want to check it out you can do that HERE.
As you can see we gained so much walking space. The plan was to create a flush with the hardwoods hearth. TODAY. Today we have gone through three different brands of materials, and tools. To be honest, I have been feeling incredibly down about the direction this project has taken, HOWEVER, I’m also an optimist and believe there is power in positive thoughts.
Want to see it in it’s current state? Imperfections and ALL? Ha! Here’s what we’re working with. Be kind.
I plan on replacing our current antlers with something a little more European down the road when we’re closer to a “finished” space. For now I hung it up to make me feel better about the entire project. As you can see from a distance the products we used were not only not matching/uniform in color, but they’re also ‘rough’ as we found out PRETTY fast that we’re not in fact professionals when it comes to this sort of thing. BUT that’s what makes you better at DIY projects, experience. We’ve gathered enough experience from this project to redo 15 more fireplaces. KIDDING, Scot. KIDDING.
Here’s a close up of the roughness I’m referring to.
SO there is a positive when it comes to the current status of the wall. It’s unique. The original vision was a tad closer to a concrete surround, but we wanted to save on cost and labor, hints that #diylife. Another positive is that it can be ‘fixed’ per-say. The game plan and next step in this DIY is to grind the wall down to create a smoother surface. Another area that didn’t work too well with gravity was the inside of the fireplace. Exhibit A.
Jesus. Shield your eyes. Insert the black out sunglasses they give you after having your eyes dilated. I’m pretty sure someone rocking those could’ve done a cleaner job. HOWEVER, I’m going to give us a break on this because having four children, our DIY’s take place in the wee hours of the morning after long days soooo giving us all the grace. This area will be fixed with the smoother, too so it won’t be this horrendous.
We also had a wood burning fireplace insert quoted and that came in just under $8k. Talk about a huge blow to our final vision, but we definitely cannot justify forking out that much money when we’re currently renovating our basement.
Here are a few more photos for your enjoyment.
The door to the left will also be getting replaced with not only a more modern door, but also a more energy efficient one because #oldhouse.
We threw the wood holder together a few weeks ago with a few scraps we had laying around. It, along with the antlers, also makes me love this project that has taken us down the black rabbit hole of DIY doom.
So that’s it! Our fireplace update, and what we plan to do next. Smoothing out the walls is coming up, and fingers crossed it produces a finish that makes all of this hard work pay off. Thanks for stopping by and reading, and welcoming our DIY ‘fail’ with open arms. We’re not all perfect, and we don’t claim to be professionals, but we sure as hell know what not to do next time. ;)
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I grew up walking into a toy store on Christmas morning. No seriously, everything we could ever want or imagine sat there in front of our eyes. I definitely never lacked a huge celebration at Christmas thanks to my parents! They went above and beyond, and made our childhood absolutely magical. While those memories are so amazing to look back on, I now understand as a parent, of four no less, not only how expensive Christmas, or any holiday for that matter can be, but how quickly the excitement wears off after all the money comes off…I mean wrapping paper. ;)
The first Christmas we had with our oldest was hands down the most modest Christmas we’ve ever celebrated as parents. Granted we weren’t making nearly as much as we are making now. Gone are the hamburger helper days, but here are the days where we put a stop to consumerism and entitled children. That last sentence seems so harsh, but when you see second graders walking around with Iphones…you’ll do anything in your power to run in the opposite direction.
Today I’m going to share a few tips with you when it comes to celebrating a minimal Christmas when you have children. These tips will eliminate ALL of the stress and pressure you feel during the holiday season to buy the latest and greatest. They will help you ease into a minimal Christmas if you’re still struggling with how to approach it to begin with. If you haven’t started your Christmas shopping yet (high five to all the type b moms rocking it out there), then you’ll definitely want to utilize these tips!
TIP #1: SOMETHING THEY WANT
Having a minimal Christmas doesn’t equal deprivation. Kids are going to want things, but it’s important to really look at WHY they want something and how much that item/product will improve life/get used. Ask your children to pick one MAIN thing they want for Christmas. Next throw some follow up questions in there. Do you want this because a friend has it/mentioned it? Did you see this on TV? Will you take care of this item (because this will most likely be the most expensive thing on your Christmas shopping list)?
TIP #2: SOMETHING THEY NEED
This might seem like a boring tip, however it’s so nice to have something that you’re in need of. Do you children play sports? Could they benefit from a new pair of shoes/cleats? If your child has a hobby, could they use more materials like new paintbrushes or watercolors?
TIP #3: SOMETHING TO WEAR
We have dress code, so our ‘something to wear’ isn’t as exciting as it would be if you child didn’t have dress code at their school, however something to wear is a great way to knock out gifts across the board. I know personally, my children love great lounging comfy clothes! They love a good and sweat pant combo to wear around the house. Plus, socks. Do anyone else’s children sometimes run around outside in their socks ruining their soles? No just mine? ;)
TIP #4: SOMETHING TO READ
I love this one because our oldest are finally at an age where they’re finding book series that they’re really interested in. There are so many options for this minimal shopping tip. My children love getting mail, so you could look into a book/magazine subscription that they’re interested in! That will give them something to look forward to and excitement to finish their current read. You could also sign them up for library cards and take them on a date to the library a few times a week to replenish their stash.
TIP #5: SOMETHING TO DO
You’ve probably seen this tip all over, but it’s always always my favorite minimal Christmas shopping tip. Speaking from personal experience, having four children you really have to divide your time, making sure you spend one on one with each one. They deserve that time, and buying ‘something to do’ is a great way to make sure those dates happen. A few things you can do for this tip would be to buy a movie ticket gift card for a movie night, or a day date to a local museum or amusement park.
TIP #5: SOMETHING FOR “ME”
Incorporating personal keepsakes every year is a a great way to look back on all the memories. A great way to incorporate this tip could be in the form of a Christmas ornament that you can put on the tree every year, or a photo album of each years Christmas you could display on a table or shelf.
TIP #6: SOMETHING FOR FAMILY
This one, like the ‘something to do’ tip is top favorite for Scot and I. We have a DIY credenza hanging in our family room and it’s filled with family games. We are obsessed with playing family games instead of sitting around watching tv in the evenings. It’s a great way to connect with your children and talk about life, and their day. Undivided attention for everyone while spending time together.
SAVE THIS PIN FOR FUTURE REFERENCE. All six of these tips on how to have a successful minimal Christmas can be applied to all holidays, birthdays and celebrations!
Minimalism has really picked up speed in recent years, and I am so thrilled when anyone I know shoots me an email or message picking my brain about how they can take their life back and let it all go.
As appealing as it sounds, starting a minimalist lifestyle can cultivate several issues in regards to breaking the habits of your upbringing. You can relate it to people you may know that grew up with nothing as a child, and in adulthood they now have everything plus more as an act of overcompensating for what they ‘missed out on’. The materialistic items make up for the absent items they never had. This can also hinder relationships, such as a marriage, if you and your spouse are on different pages about this lifestyle change.
Luckily, we no longer have to partake in that lifestyle. I am here to encourage all of you reading this to look around your life, all aspects of it, and see how much stress and anxiety you can attribute to excess clutter and ‘things’.
Our journey to minimalism was hands down the greatest thing that we could have ever done for our family. Was everyone on board at the beginning? Absolutely not. Is everyone on board present day? Absolutely not. HOWEVER, this is our life to live, not theirs. At the end of the day you have to make a conscious decision on how you want to move forward with your own personal journey to minimalism. You have to put yourself, your mentality, your family, and your home first.
Today I wanted to touch base on a few struggles someone might encounter at the beginning of their journey to minimalism. As a minimalist, I hope you can avoid a majority, if not all, however like I stated above, everyone has their own opinions towards minimalism but it’s up to you how to handle those. Over consumption is a toxic way of living that hinders your ability to live a freeing lifestyle. It’s a huge weight sitting on your shoulders patiently waiting for you to give in and want and need all the things. You don’t. You don’t need all the things. Trust me on that.
Getting your spouse on board. When you and your partner aren’t seeing eye to eye on living a minimal lifestyle it can create a huge barrier between your emotions. As someone who has had this conversation before, I want you to know that I understand the strong force pushing you to let it all go. Make sure you approach the conversation in a way that allows your spouse to not so much feel ‘forced’ to participate in this new lifestyle, but rather list the positive changes that migrating towards a more minimal lifestyle can create for your lives. You don’t have to go all in full force, you can prioritize and start small. As long as you START, you’re already being successful.
Feeling regretful when getting rid of items that we’re gifted to you. This could potentially be a huge struggle emotionally, but I want you to remind yourself of one thing when beginning your minimal lifestyle. You can either continue living in the past and make no significant change, or you can progress and move forward and change the future. Getting rid of gifted items can no doubt be awkward, especially if said item is ‘missing’ if that individual happens to drop by your home. My number one question to myself (more so at the very beginning of my journey to minimalism) was how often are you using this item? Does this item bring any value to your life? If it serves no purpose, it’s not needed.
Maintaining a healthy ability of self control. Just because you’re starting a minimal lifestyle, doesn’t automatically mean you’ll never step foot in a store again. HOWEVER, what you have to be adamant about in regards to control, is asking yourself WHY you would need something, HOW it would help improve your life, WOULD you use it on a daily basis. It’s a learning curve, but you have to recognize that shopping in general cannot be your emotional stress release. Not only are you hindering your bank account, but you’re crowding your mind and home. Materialistic items have no value or worth in the grand scheme of things.
Parenthood. Enough said. Raising children in this day and age is a daunting task for parents. Your children are being bombarded by friends, ads, commercials, and the ‘social norm’ of doing what everyone else is doing. PARENTS. THIS IS A WAKE UP CALL. The less your children have, the HAPPIER they will be. I PROMISE. I hate to word it this way, because it can come off as ‘lazy’ to the majority, but LOWER YOUR CHILDREN’S EXPECTATIONS in life. Lower the bar. By caving into the ‘norm’, you’re consenting to a never ending contract to give your children whatever their little hearts desire. You’re not raising thankful, grateful or giving children, your raising self entitled, possessive, materialistic kids that don’t have enough appreciation for how those things got in their hands to begin with. My children have a container of 3000 legos in their room. They will play with them for HOURS. They use their imagination to create new things every.single.time. They’re not deprived, they’re not resentful for what they ‘don’t have’. They’re simply being kids, enjoying what is in front of them.
Not being able to let something go because of your emotional attachment to it. Separate the attachments you have to your ‘things’, and your entire life will change. Just because a memory is linked to an object, does not mean you have to take it to the grave with you. If it’s collecting dust on the back of the shelf, or in a cabinet, why are you holding onto it? Ask yourself WHY you need this. If you can come up with TWO solid reasons, keep it. However, I don’t think you’ll be able to come up with two good enough to not part ways.
Getting rid of items that you are fearful of not being able to replace if need be. This one is a no brainer for me. If you have not used the item/object on a daily basis let.it.go. Don’t keep things for a ‘what if’ situation. Don’t let consumerism convince you that you cannot and do not deserve a freeing lifestyle. This goes hand in hand with the above and getting rid of sentimental items. You might struggle at first with not having as much to choose from, but in the bigger picture, you’ll 100% appreciate the freedom you’re experiencing over the clutter.
All of the struggles listed above are completely normal to experience during your journey to minimalism. Addressing and facing those struggles is half the battle of starting this journey to minimalism on the right foot, SO KUDOS TO YOU. You get a virtual pat on the back for making it this far! Your stress, anxiety, and overall unhappiness has finally lost, is being addressed, and is no longer winning. You’ve finally reached the point in your life where you’re tired of facing clutter on a daily basis. Exhausted from cleaning up all the things you convinced yourself at one time that you need. You are no longer going to allow others to contribute to the over consumerism you once faced in your life. You’re taking control and that my friend is a huge accomplishment.
What you’re experiencing now will only transpire to those around you. You are allowing yourself to live a lifestyle that is unmatched by any item inside a store. The more your life changes, the more others will notice, the more others will want the details, the more you can spread the same freeing lifestyle you’re now living on a daily basis with them. Continue to set the example, set the bar, set the standard for your life.
Here is a short list of questions that can help you begin your minimal lifestyle. Purging can be the hardest hurdle to get over, as I briefly mentioned in our journey to minimalism post. When discarding items and facing the struggles of actually moving forward ask yourself the following:
Do you use this on a daily basis? If not a daily basis, a weekly basis?
Will this item replace something else eventually? If not why do you have it?
There are so many ways you can justify holding on to something. It’s a normal way to rationalize when you’re in the purging state of becoming a minimalist. However, realistic justifications are just another way to hold you in place, and never allow you to move forward and progress. Think of all the positive things that can come from minimalism. It personally helped us pay off our debt! NOW THAT speaks VOLUMES if you’re struggling with any form of debt, big or small.
What it comes down to is, it’s never ever too late to start new habits and break old ones. You have every right to live a lifestyle you feel like pursuing. If you’re reading this today and are stuck on the fence about becoming a minimalist drop me a DM on our Instagram, or leave a comment below! You can shoot us an email! There are so many ways to contact us, and we would love to help offer advice we have personally experienced in this lifestyle. Be mindful moving forward and your life will forever be changed. It’s all about your mentality.
Thank you so much for stopping by and reading the struggles of starting a minimal lifestyle, and how to push through them. You’re not alone in this journey! We would love you to share this post, and pin the photo below. Share it with friends or family that may not be fully listening to what you’re telling them.
If you visit your local stores often, you know that they got started on their Christmas displays before we even trick or treated for candy on Halloween. It doesn’t seem as crazy as you think when you think about how much consumerism plays into the preparation. Aisles upon aisles of the newest ornaments and design lines tempting you to purchase an abundance of Christmas decor you’ll have to store in a short month.
Today I wanted to touch base on how you can create a festive, decorated home, not only on a budget, but by using simple items in and around your home. The best part? If you plan accordingly, you won’t have to store a thing! Can we all give a collective amen for not having an insane amount of storage containers in our attic…basement, or hallway closet. Just say no.
Some of my favorite decor items are free, and they come from the greatest selection you could stumble upon. It’s not a local big box store, it’s nature. Walk around outside, if you don’t have an immense selection to choose from, venture to your local park. Want to see all the magical ways I decorate for the upcoming holidays, leaving all the stress behind me for another day. Below you’ll find my Top Five Favorite Minimal Christmas Decor ideas for FREE.
This is such a classic look and requires minimal effort, as well as minimal materials. Collect some pine clippings and insert them into a beautiful glass container. You can do this in containers you already have laying around your home, or it can be thrifted glass bottles. Remember to check out your local thrift stores, and utilize the half off deals.
This look would be an impeccable tablescape, with a few lined up down the table.
Continuing on with our pine tree clippings, tackle this thirty second minimal Christmas garland. I love this one from Almost Makes Perfect. You can check out her post here. This garland would be a great spot for a room that’s missing the Christmas touch. My favorite part about this minimal garland is that it’s a perfect way to incorporate your children into decorating, while enjoying some time together.
Do you have a gifted vase laying around the house? Awesome! Take a small clipping off of a pine tree and throw it in that bad boy. I am obsessing over these colors. You can recreate this look easily by spraying whatever container you have with matte black spray paint. One and done.
Speaking of pine trees, since we’re already utilizing the clippings, why not incorporate the pine cones while we’re at it. Simple string a few pine cones on some twine and elegantly lay it over a mantel. This would also be a great table centerpiece. Make sure you soak your pine cones to eliminate bugs (spiders), from making their way into your home.
Last but not least, twigs. Twigs, sticks, branches, whatever you can find around your home or local wooded area, can easily be turned into something beautiful. I love this diy twig wreath. You can view a video tutorial to create your own here. This would be perfect on an interior or exterior door!
We would love for you to Pin this image to Pinterest if you love and want to save this post for later. Share it with a friend who might be struggling with the overwhelming expectations of holiday decor. Keep it simple this more, and always remember to decorate with the intention of, ‘less is more’! Thanks so much for stopping by and reading. We’re looking forward to seeing your decor this year!
Now that our fireplace transformation is in it’s final stages of being complete, I’ve been diving into the dining room design. When it comes to tables, there are endless possibilities. Today, however, I’m going to be sharing a few of my favorite round dining room tables.
Living in a long rectangle ranch, we have a lot of long lines. Although I love the idea of a longer rectangle table because of guest accommodation, I think it would be a nice change to break up the lines with a round table. Here’s a look at my top round table favorites.
I love the size of this round table. I’m also obsessed with the finish of the table, but would be concerned about how it would handle our orange poly floors. A rug underneath would break up the two stains, and this finish would look absolutely breathtaking next to our modern fireplace.
The base of this round dining room table is giving me all the feels. It works perfectly with these chairs, allowing them to be pushed in and not looking cluttered. I would be concerned about how close a taller individual could get to the table, though.
Now THIS round table is what I’m talking about. I am obsessed with how wide this base is, along with allowing plenty of leg room underneath the table. This kind of round table could hands down easily seat all six of us without feeling crowded.
This oval dining room table top is so incredibly beautiful, seats six, and I am loving how big and spacious the chairs feel matched with it. This would be a great way to pull in our kitchen counters, as well as sit nicely next to modern fireplace.
What would you do? Would you throw a round/oval table in a long rectangular room to break up the lines, or would you stick to a longer rectangular table? Would love for you to chime in! What do you have in your own home? Drop a comment below!
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**First I want to preface this post with YES the update photos I posted in this post have been altered to better fit our finalized after vision. Sanding down our hardwood floors to remove the orange polly is at the top of our list. This edit helps us visual the two next to one another. Do not fear, they’re still the same ole’ horrendous orange color like the pre-brick hearth removal below.
Wow! October was insane. It might have seemed like we fell off the face of the planet, but really we we’re just working like crazy behind the scenes and had to put a few posts on the back burner.
Today, however, we’re here to share a fireplace update. If you recall, we started this fireplace transformation because the painted brick fireplace was completely clashing with the modern vision we had for it, and the rest of the house. The first step we took was removing the fireplace’s brick hearth. You can see behind the scenes, photos, and an awesome time lapse video of that process on this post.
Here’s the fireplace before we began working on it.
It looked completely different once the brick hearth was removed, as you can see below.
We’re not going to share the products we’re using for this transformation just yet. The project isn’t quite finished, so we want to make sure we’re covering all bases so you can avoid some of the issues/kinks we’ve had to work out during this process. I will say though, it’s going to be such a magical final reveal! The plan is to complete the final coat tonight before starting on the storage extension.
Here is what our fireplace currently looks like.
As you can see, the hearth has been poured, and roughly 1.5 layers have been completed on the face of the fireplace. You’ll notice the right side is a tad darker than the left side, that’s a kink we’re working on for you when we do the final reveal. This project has for sure been a learning curve.
I cannot even believe how much it adds to this space. Not only did it free up an insane amount of room getting rid of that brick hearth, but it also fits perfectly with our vision for the final look of our dining room.
Here is a close up of the fireplace texture. We are still undecided on the final finish, so we’ll keep you posted, however, I am l-o-v-i-n-g it!
That’s it for now when it comes to the farmhouse to modern fireplace makeover! However, so many changes have taken place around here since the beginning of October! We broke it down into a bullet list for ease:
We added a ‘Join the lifestyle’ newsletter to every page on This Minimal House. Insert your email to receive blog post/diy projects and all the things. No spam, just staying in the know.
We added a Brands/Readers/Let’s work together page. This is where you’ll be able to contact us if you’re a small business/brand that is looking for product reviews/collabs! We’re looking forward to hearing from you!
You can now send us products for review to be featured on This Minimal House. Our address is P.O BOX 118 Suwanee, Ga 30024!
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It's been awhile since I've shared a before and after of our kitchen! A lot of blood, sweat, tears, and long long nights went into this kitchen. Before we get started let me preface this post by saying our original kitchen when we moved in had to go. We definitely believe in saving money and recycling, unfortunately that wasn't the case with our old kitchen.
For starters, it was blue wood stained paneling from floor to ceiling. Aside from that it was dated and most importantly roach infested. The lights throughout the kitchen had no grounding, and posed a HUGE fire hazard, which we wanted to immediately eliminate! We didn't want to mess around with 1963 wiring. Lastly, it was so dark, and the photographer in me wanted to give our kitchen the natural light it deserved. In case you're new to this space, here's a before and after photo of our current kitchen.
The old layout of our kitchen wasn't practical for our family. We needed more space and the
"U" shape it had before was hindering to the general flow of the space. By placing all appliances and cabinets on one long wall allowed for not only more walking room, but also made the kitchen look so much larger! We left the existing windows, but built a header to equal them out.
For the full kitchen gut and all the before photos, click here.
Life with four children, and two dogs no less, can be messy and dirty. Keeping your home clean with the everyday chaos of life can seem impossible and daunting. I used to absolutely dread doing the dishes because they would pile up, then they would sit there neglected, and by the time they got done it took two separate loads on top of hand washing. That is a great way to set yourself up for failure, and that's exactly what I was doing. I wasn't implementing the hacks I'm going to share with you on this post today, and spoiler alert cleaning my kitchen is hands down my FAVORITE thing to do now.
In order to make these fool proof cleaning hacks work, you're going to have to be completely dedicated on a daily basis to ensure that you don't get behind in your cleaning game. Some would argue that these hacks are a form of OCD, I am claiming they're a quicker way to sanity. Any mom would agree that having a clean home creates an environment that is not only less stressful for your own mind, but your children's minds as well. Want to know how I keep my house immaculate with four children and two dogs? Here are my fool proof cleaning hacks.
One thing that has altered our lives is our morning routine. I do the same exact routine every single morning before we leave for school, as well as during the summer months. This has been LIFE CHANGING to say the least. Before 8 a.m my entire house is in order and ready to go. Doing this allows me to set the precedence for the rest of the day. Want to know what's included in my morning routine? Stay with me to find out.
First thing in the morning I make my children breakfast. That allows for my morning routine to be calm, productive and quiet (HA, who am I kidding, life with children is anything but quiet). Once they're good to go and taken care of I empty the clean dishwasher from the previous night. Then I load it with the few items that didn't fit from the night before, along with the breakfast dishes we use. That takes care of the dishwasher/dishes aspect. Done and done.
Next I wipe down all the counters. Wiping them down usually means discarding all accumulated crumbs from the day before, which then lands on the floor. That brings me to my next step in the cleaning hack routine. I do a quick sweep of the floor, including around the table where breakfast made it both in the mouths, and on the floor. Those simple steps above took care of my entire kitchen cleaning regiment. It literally takes me 5 minutes top every single morning. *To be completely transparent, I do have to mention that since rescuing our puppy, I collectively sweep about 5x throughout the day to manage hair.
When the kitchen can officially be checked off the list, I move onto the laundry. I won't get into the mathematical specifics of how many articles of clothing I wash for a family of six, but I will tell you it's alot. I will also say that I am NEVER behind on laundry after implementing these cleaning hacks. It is one of the simplest hacks. Seriously. Want to know the simplicity of it all?