Modern Front Porch Updates

I have a lot, and I mean a lot of projects that I want to tackle on our exterior. At almost 30 weeks pregnant, I am running out of steam, especially for big jobs like staining our two story wrap around deck. This summer is all about the little things. I started with our front porch. There are still things I want to do here, don’t look too close at the stairs. But I removed the dated corbels, added some modern elements and pops of black to update this grey, 80’s porch. There will always be more to do, but loving the direction things are headed.

Modern Front Porch Decor


Front Porch Before
Modern Front Porch Decor
Modern Front Porch Decor

Baby #2 Nursery Plans

I am super excited to share my plans progress and plans for the baby nursery. It took me some time to find the starting point for this room, but it is moving in the right direction.

One of the things that is staying as we transform this room from the playroom to the nursery is a daybed I made. I cannot believe I never shared this amazing DIY with you. It is based on this tutorial by A House In The Hills. I made this day bed to be both a cozy hang out spot and a guest bed. After I finished I bought a cheap-o mattress from Ikea, as I didn’t know how much use the bed would get, so I didn’t want to invest. Autonomous invited me to try out their mattress and I knew just the spot that needed an upgrade. And upgrade it is! This mattress is about four times the thickness of the Ikea mattress we had! The quality is a dream! I am picturing myself napping here with a baby in my arms in a few short months. One of my favorite details is the anti-slip pad on the bottom. It is a great feature for a house with a four year old and a slick wood platform bed.

Autonomous Mattress
Autonomous Mattress
Autonomous Mattress

The room is starting to come together, and here is what I’m working toward. You may remember some of the inspiration photos I shared a few weeks back.

Here is my design plan for the room. I am planning on making a few special details that aren’t pictured here, but this is the vibe, neutral and relaxed with lots of sunny touches.

Nursery Plans


Happiness Project Month 6

I love this monthly check in with my Happiness Project. While I haven’t been documenting in public and private on the daily. This blog post I’ve been doing each month prompts me to set my goals for the month and reminds me to keep the focus at the front of my mind.

In May my focus was on attitude. While I was very far from perfect, I feel like I made improvements and saw positive changes within myself. I did not start each day with a 10 minute meditation like I strived to, but I did check in with myself often to check my attitude. I did not do one act of kindness every day, but I did do acts of kindness regularly. I felt a shift, however slight, in my negative thoughts toward scarcity of time. Here were the goals I made and how I measured up.


  • start each morning with a 10 minute meditation, focusing on my outlook and attitude for the day
  • take mental note of negativity and complaining
  • resist raising my voice to my family
  • do an act of kindness each day
  • let it go. Whatever it is, let it go.
  • Do all things with love

my bridesmaids and I, photo  Lizzie Photo

my bridesmaids and I, photo Lizzie Photo

In June I will be focusing on friendship. I feel lucky and grateful for all the wonderful friends I have in my life. But it’s not without work. I have never taken my friendships for granted and always put in the effort to keep in touch. When I was younger I took it very personally when a friend canceled or didn’t make it to a party. I’ve always felt that you get to choose where and how you spend your time, and if someone doesn’t put in the effort it means they don’t value the relationship. I struggle with those feelings to this day. But it’s only gotten much, much harder to make that time as we’ve gotten older. It really takes time and commitment to keep relationships alive. I am grateful for the technologies that make it so much easier to keep friendships going throughout the years and across the world, despite our busy, full lives. This month I am committing to fostering those relationships that are so dear to me, I am planning on focusing on friendships, new and old.

What are your favorite ways to honor your friendships?


  • Call or text one friend each day
  • send something in the mail to a friend each week
  • reach out to make a new friend
  • schedule a date to meet a friend I haven't seen in a while
  • do one thing to cultivate a young friendship

June Mood Board

June is here, the flowers are blooming and the summer event calendar is filling up over here!

This month the fam is taking a little babymoon to Charleston! It’s been a while since our last vacation, like well over a year, so we are excited to get away, even if it’s just for a few days. None of us have ever traveled to South Carolina, so we have a new state to cross off our list. We don’t have much planned, just to walk around, explore the city, hit the beach and enjoy our time as a family of three.

Once we get back, I hit the ground running on wedding and party season! I’m hosting a dinner party, building an installation, prepping for two photoshoots and a wedding, all in the back half of June! It’s going to be a wild few weeks, but I figure I may as well pack it in while I can before I’m too tired to keep going/have a newborn to tend to.

This month’s mood board is all about the art of entertaining. A simple stand out color can make maximum impact. Table settings don’t have to be elaborate to wow and flickering candles can go a long way.

Father's Day Gift Ideas For Sentimental Dads

My husband, just like my dad was is a big softie. A wonderful, kind dad deserves a fitting, thoughtful gifts. But dads (men in general) can be so tricky to buy for. My dad used to request a new hoodie or baseball hat every Christmas. As a person who’s love language is gift giving, this didn’t sit well with me. I wanted to be creative. Twenty years later I am still the same. I love giving gifts, or more accurately, I love giving GOOD gifts, the kind you can’t find at the sporting goods store the day before Father’s Day.

Pinhole Press never fails me on occasions like this one. Ollie and I chose photos to put together the perfect “All About My Dad Book.” This special keepsake has 10 prompts for kiddos to write what is so special about their dad. Ollie and I had such a good time making this book and were so excited to give it to Kyle that we just couldn’t wait!

Keep scrolling to see my other creative ideas for sentimental dads.


Father's Day Gift Ideas
Gift Ideas for Sentimental Dads




search Etsy photo via  Unsplash

search Etsy photo via Unsplash


Beats and Bites Party

Earlier this month I teamed up with the insanely talented, funny and charming food blogger, Liz, from The Lemon Bowl. She started a party series called Beats and Bites, because, in addition to healthy food, her love for hip hop runs deep. Liz brought me on to style the event and after she sent me the 90’s inspired invitation I jumped at the opportunity! Here’s the mood board I pitched her.

Beats and Bites Party Mood Board

The party was sponsored by Liz’s partner, Bob’s Red Mill. She designed the delicious menu using their products. And because the beats comes first in the name of the party series, Liz brought on Adrian Butler, everyone’s favorite local DJ to spin the jams.

Bobs Red Mill Beats and Bites

I got the chance to create some really fun decor moments, including these geometric pinātas.

Bobs Red Mill Beats and Bites

I styled a Bob’s Red Mill popcorn bar, with all kinds of amazing toppings, custom plexi labels and tiny disco balls.

Bobs Red Mill Beats and Bites

How cute is Liz popping bottles in front of the color block backdrop I created.

Bobs Red Mill Beats and Bites
Bobs Red Mill Beats and Bites
Bobs Red Mill Beats and Bites
Bobs Red Mill Beats and Bites

Read Liz’s recap here and get the recipe for paleo baked chicken tenders with Sriraccha Ketchup.

Awesome Deck Update

I’ve been working my butt off getting the inside of the house up to snuff, I have not had much of a chance to tackle the outside. That and the weather here in Michigan was cold until mid April, then raining since then. My decking out the deck was set back a little. This past week I finally got around to assembling my new outdoor furniture. My one big outdoor furniture purchase this summer was an outdoor sofa. I love the one I found at World Market for a really great price. 20% right now for Rewards members. No seating area would be complete without a table top set your summer cocktail and prop your feet up. I partnered with Autonomous for this beautiful teak wood table. I loved the beautiful wood and the detail of the curved edges. Our deck stretches across the entire back of our house and this section is directly outside our master bedroom. Thanks to Autonomous, this is the perfect spot for a drink, or hanging out after dinner. This is also the place where I’m going to set up our outdoor movie night and I picture a lot of baby snuggles happening here this fall.

Next up, sprucing up the front porch!

Awesome Outdoor Deck Update
Awesome Outdoor Deck Update
Awesome Outdoor Deck Update

Wax Poetic - The Perfect Locally Made Wedding Favor

Last week I was invited to Wax Poetic, a local candle making shop with a few other wedding professionals to learn about their custom wedding favors and gifts. It was such a fun experience to choose my scents and make my candle, I can can’t wait to tell my clients about this amazing, Grand Rapids-made idea for personalized wedding favors.

A couple can come in for the candle making experience, choose their own scents, that have special meaning to them or their story. And then Wax Poetic will custom make candles for your guests starting at just a couple of bucks!

Outside of personalized favors and gifts, Wax Poetic is a great spot of a stop on a bachelorette party. They have a private room for rent, were you can bring alcohol and have a fun night making candles and a lovely souvenir to bring home.

Wax Poetic Personalized Candles

The space is so cute and well designed and conveniently located in East Town Grand Rapids near shops and restaurants.

Wax Poetic Personalized Candles

This is one of three walls of fragrances to choose from to make your candle.

Wax Poetic Personalized Candles

Then there is a lot of sniffing and a little mixing.

Wax Poetic Personalized Candles

I narrowed it down to a combo of basil, mahogany and rose petals. And because they ask you to come up with a creative name, we decided on “summer armchair” for my candle.

Wax Poetic Personalized Candles

Lindsay from Paper Hat weddings, Katie from Katie Makes and Kyleigh from By Kyleigh Rose made a great candle making crew.

Wax Poetic Personalized Candles

Here she is making my home smell lovely.

Wax Poetic Personalized Candles

Whether you are a bride or groom looking for a favor or not, I highly recomend the candle making experience at Wax Poetic.