Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Christmas decorations!

Guys, I really love Christmas. I try not to decorate before Thanksgiving, because Christmas festivities have their time and place. And I can pretty easily manage to put off Christmas music until after December 1st. 

But, still. I love Christmas. 

Richard is such a gem, and not only puts up with the excessive Christmas decorations, he even helps put them up! 

And now that I'm ready to take them all down, I'll post pictures! 

Not pictured in this post (or anywhere since I didn't take any pictures) -- the candle lights in each of the front windows. I meant to get an exterior picture of the house since those lights just made it look so festive and inviting! Oh well, next year. 

Every year, we get a fresh tree. Nothing beats the smell of a fresh, pine Christmas tree. I have such fond childhood memories of picking out a tree with my family on the say after Thanksgiving each year. My sisters and I would race around trying to find the best one, and we would point any comical-looking ones along the way. And our favorite was always the comically large ones. "Dad, let's get this 22-foot tree!"

Of course, a close up of one of the Clemson ornaments. 

The last couple of years, I've added a second tree -- a little, artificial one just for my silver bells. My grandmother (Gumbie) bought each of us three girls a silver bell each Christmas for the first 21 years of our lives. We each had our own style of bell, and I ended up with a beautiful collection of silver sleigh bells. I love the legacy of the bells, and I really like having a separate, small tree instead of including them on the big tree. 

Silver bells!

My very first one -- 1987.

The view from the kitchen

... and our previously posted picture of the mantel -- baby stocking and all. :)

The dining room table with the decorative table-runner layout

These little guys were a lifesaver this year. You just plug these into the outlets, then plug the lights into these, and voila! They become remote-controlled lights! This made it so we could quickly turn on and off the lights on both trees and both garlands (kitchen and dining room). Love them! 

Monday, December 15, 2014

And then there were three...

Well, four if you count Lola. 

That's right! We're expecting!

I'm due June 29, and we couldn't be more excited. We've been praying for Baby S everyday, and we can't wait to meet our precious little one!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Finally Painting the Guest Room

I've maybe mentioned before that we try to have only one room at a time that has an assortment of squares of paint options on the walls. 

The guest room has been that room for a quite a while now. 

Because it's a west-facing room and it gets plenty of afternoon sunlight, I was thinking that we could go with a darker color in there. I liked the idea of a navy (Martha Stewart Plumage) or a darkish, true gray. We ruled out the navy and dark green options because we already have a dark teal room. The trouble was in finding the gray.

I scoured blogs and Pinterest to find rooms that looked like what I was looking for. Rooms like these: 

However, when I painted the swatches that matched the specific paint colors from the above pictures, I wasn't happy with any of them. 

We first painted just the three swatches on the bottom left (Martha Stewart Plumage, Benjamin Moore Newburg Green, and Behr Amazon Stone). This was really just to see if we wanted to go in a navy direction or a gray direction. We picked the gray route, and decided to find a more true gray since Amazon Stone leans towards the brown side a bit. (Fascinating, I know). 

So, since I know that picking paint colors from a paint swatch is tricky (and not a talent of mine), and I know that grays are particularly tricky, I hit up Pinterest again to see what colors worked for other people. We picked three grays and ruled one out immediately. So we added Benjamin Moore Thunder and Sherwin Williams Requisite Gray to the bottom row. 

so. many. squares.

Nope. Still not what I was looking for. I was ready to accept defeat and just pick one of the already painted options instead of trying to find another color. Enter Richard. (Actually, he was already in the picture since he painted the second round of options.) He offered to go to Home Depot and just. pick. a. gray. My eyes narrowed in obvious skepticism. I explained that picking paint colors from a paint swatch is tricky and that selecting grays are particularly tricky. 

He, of course, came back with three perfect gray options in varying shades. I picked the middle one, Glidden Seal Gray, and it is exactly what I was looking for! I mean, how great is this Richard guy?

All eight options (that made it onto the walls) plus a very spoiled puppy. 

Another section with only six of the options -- just to give a feel for how many squared were painted on the walls. 


He also painted the closet while he was at it. He used Benjamin Moore Stonington Gray which is our downstairs color that we already knew we loved. 

The lovely completed closet!