August Superlatives: Accidents & Fish Baskets


Happy Labor Day weekend everyone! That means that both summer and the month of August are coming to a close. Let’s all shed a communal tear. But before we mentally check out for the long weekend, it always helps us keep the ol’ momentum up by taking an appreciative look back on all of our happenings from last month (along with some bonus never-before-seen stuff). It definitely inspires us to keep plugging away, plus it makes browsing our archives a lot easier (you can read back through January of 2011 right here in just 19 posts instead of 665). Woot! And below you’ll also find a hint about Monday’s giveaway, so feel free to guess

Reader Redesign: Endless Summer


Maybe this is just me trying to hang on to every last vestige of summer. Maybe it’s me wanting a big sunroom makeover (we haven’t even touched ours since we moved in). Or maybe it’s just that Jenna Sue has a knack for awesome makeovers (you may remember her entryway transformation). Whatever the reason, feast your sunshine-loving eyes on this cheerful update. Here’s her letter: Hello once again! Our sunroom began with white walls, green trim, carpet and a sagging ceiling. We removed the ceiling, added insulation and fresh new humidity resistant drywall (which I painted a light blue and added recessed speakers and lights). And we replaced the carpet with gray ‘wood’ tile planks.

Spray Painting A Little Plastic Basketball Hoop


Hoop, there it is. File this under my weirdest “Dude, Get On That Already” challenge to date. Much like many of our other DGOTA adventures, this mini update involves something that sat around bugging me way too long + a trusty ol’ can of spray paint. But this time it’s not an animal. I know. Total shocker. John actually laughed at me for this little tweak (and I’m fully expecting you guys to as well), but they say it’s the little things that make ya happy… and seeing a bright red and blue plastic hoop against the back wall of our carport every. single. time. we pulled into the driveway (it was so bright you

Finally Finished: Our Deck Furniture In Action


Well, our goal was to get to enjoy our deck by Labor Day and we squeaked in with just a few days to spare. And in case you couldn’t tell, I’m jazz hands excited about it. Don’t ask me what this move is called. John just picked up the camera and aimed it at me and this happened. It’s a pose straight out of Kids Incorporated. We probably would have taken a rickety card table and some metal folding chairs, so we’re psyched to have found actual end-of-season discounted furniture to put out there for the long haul – but we definitely have more in mind for finishing things off (more on that in a

How Do You Decide What To Post About?


Q: How do you decide what to post about every day? I’m new to blogging and feeling a lot of pressure. I worry what I write will be boring. Do you ever worry about that? Do you have a checklist that you go through to see if something is good to write about? Do you ever worry that people won’t like what you share? Do you ever skip a post if you think it will be poorly received? Do you try to pace things out in a strategic way? – Nina M. A: Aw, I’m sorry that you feel any pressure at all, Nina. Figuring out what to post about sounds like it could be

Protecting Outdoor Furniture With Varnish And Teak Oil


T-minus twenty for hours until we have furniture on the deck!!! Woah nellie, I’m excited about it. Hence the use of three exclamation points and the term woah nellie. Heck, I’m about to break out some coordinated and not at all bizarre dance moves. Watch out now. We still have to choose what stain or sealer to use on the deck (some require a waiting period for pressure treated wood to dry out/acclimate while others can be used sooner) but we decided (read: I prodded John until he agreed) that putting some furniture on the deck in the meantime just means that we can start enjoying this baby. It’ll only take about twenty minutes to

Fab Freebie: Bliss Full


***This giveaway is now closed – see who won below!*** Thanks to, the person who’s about to experience $750 worth of bliss is… Eryka (who also finds bliss in clean sheets and sleeping in!). Congrats! Who doesn’t love a good house splurge? Especially when it’s blissfully free because you win it. This week’s prize comes from Bliss Home & Design, a high-end home furnishings boutique that curates luxurious furniture, accessories, bedding, and antiques that blend old-world craftsmanship and timeless style. Basically, tons of statement pieces that can take any corner of your room and immediately posh it up. And did I mention that they’re giving away a $750 store credit? Not a bad way

Adding Words To A Painting For A Meaningful Message


Remember when I shared our possessed painting that jumped off the wall cheap painting that we got for $20 at a yard sale… … and mentioned that we: mostly liked the size of it and the chunky frame (which actually came with a little dent in it – a total sign that this guy was a trouble-maker) weren’t in love with the art itself (it just felt sort of generic and hotel-ish in person) Yes? Me too. And then remember when a bunch of you (seriously, like at least a dozen of you guys) recommended that we do some sort of letter stenciling over it like this genius creation by Emily Von Henderson or this

Some Ways We Save Money (And Have Fun) With Kid Clothes


One of the most common questions on instagram/Facebook/Twitter when we share a photo isn’t “what paint color is that?” or “who makes that lamp?” – it’s “where did you get that shirt/dress/skirt?” – and they’re not talking about me (or John)… they’re talking about Clara. Yes, there have been a bunch of requests for a post about how we score deals/save money in the kid clothing department along with where we get her clothes. So whoop, here it is. And thanks to all of those aforementioned instagram photos that we’ve shared, we have a whole bunch of shots to use throughout this rundown. Admittedly it’s kinda weird to analyze your kid’s clothing in so much

Moroccan Me Crazy


This morning we shared pics from our recent thrifting trip and I promised you more details about a certain table that we adopted (along with my cleaning/restoring ritual for old musty wood) so here’s the rundown. We really liked this cool Moroccan accent table that we found at the first place we went (Love of Jesus Thrift here in Richmond). Especially since it reminded us of a few designer ones like this that are selling for $260+. So at $25 for a solid wood table with awesome lines, we took it home. Boy was in rough shape, so I: gave him a wipe down with a damp cloth with a tiny amount of Mrs Meyers

A Day Of Thrifting


Occasion: The thrifting bug struck on a lazy Saturday morning Location: All over Richmond to six of my favorite thrift stores with the hubby and toddler in tow (Burger very smartly stayed home to nap) You know we love a good thrift-fest (like these thrifty adventures of yore), so let’s go secondhand window shopping, shall we? First we went to Love of Jesus (on Midlothian for any locals who are wondering), which is an awesome place for larger furnishings. Of course like most thrift stores it’s hit or miss, but when you hit, it’s a good time. We actually got a lot of pieces that we transformed for our book here (like a $15 desk

How To Build A Deck: It’s DONE!!!


The deck is officially done. Sound the celebratory cowbells! I actually finished it on Friday and we’ve spent the last few days crossing all appendages and waiting for an inspection (I couldn’t bear to share my triumph until I was actually sure it was a to-code triumph). The inspection finally happened yesterday afternoon, and – ta-da! – we passed. Relief flooded over me like all the sweat that I put into building this thing (lesson learned: build decks in the spring or fall). Here she is in all of her wood-riddled, approved-by-the-county glory: It’s definitely an upgrade from the tiny rotting balcony that we started with: We thought it’d be great to have it done

Budget Blooms: Tulips, Take Three


Things I’m great at: making up words to songs when I don’t know them, eating Oreos, dancing like Elaine from Seinfeld. Things I’m bad at: loading the dishwasher, remembering to get haircuts more than once every few years, and apparently doing monthly budget bloom posts. I used to do them once a month for over a year, but then I fell off, struggled to get back on it six months ago with one measly post in February, and just never got it together in any sort of regular pattern. So here’s a random Budget Blooms post after over half a year of absence in that department. Won’t you forgive me? In return I played around

Multiplying Egg Chairs…


I’m back as promised with: an egg chair update (since I just tossed pillows on it but promised to share the rest of the details once we figured out a real seat and all that jazz) three new egg chairs that we recently brought home I guess we should skip right ahead to those huh? Don’t worry, our living room doesn’t look like an egg chair family reunion. They’re of the dollhouse variety (you can read more on Clara’s DIY dollhouse here): When a super sweet reader (thanks Nicole!) told me CB2 had them on clearance for 50 cents each (wahooo!) I couldn’t resist. They’re actually Christmas ornaments (hence the super sale price so far

Fab Freebie: Get Your Fixture Fix


***This giveaway is no longer accepting entries – see who won below!*** And the random person getting their fixture fix this week is… Anne L (who simply described the problem in her bathroom as: “Pink carpet in bathroom?! Nasty!”) Congrats Anne! Got a bathroom that could use a new faucet? Or new showerhead? Or new just about every fixture? Well then you’re in luck. The generous folks at Moen are dishing out an ENTIRE suite of bathroom fixtures in your choice of three of their most popular collections: the modern 90 Degree, the sexy Voss or the classic Boardwalk. You’ll get: Two bathroom faucets A rainshower showerhead and matching tub spout One 18-inch towel bar

How To Turn A Basket Into A Pendant Light


Shablam. This is the story of making an old basket into a pendant light using just this $10 thrift store basket that we found along with two other simple supplies. So allow me to further illuminate the basket to light conversion process. Har-har. The first step was heading over to a local lighting outlet (The Decorating Outlet) to check out any existing pendant lights that they were selling cheaply (that way we could convert one into a pendant for our big basket shade). While we were there we saw this awesomesauce basket pendant that was selling for $322 (originally $460). Wowsers. Feeling inspired, we poked around for any affordable pendant light that we thought would

Window Shopping: High Bridges & Green Fronts


We took a little day trip last weekend to a nearby town called Farmville. It’s about an hour away from Richmond and, as the name suggests, involves driving deep into rural Central Virginia. The reason for our adventure was actual to do a family bike ride on a new rails-to-trails park that opened up around Farmville called High Bridge Trail State Park. For those of you who catch our Instagram pics on Facebook or Twitter, you saw a picture of that very (very, very) high bridge already. But coercing Sherry into riding her bike over this steel and wood skyway was my main thrill of the day. And hers was something else entirely. She was

Summer Lovin’


**Psst- We know most Fridays we just post once, but every month on sponsor shout out day we double up. So we’ll be back in a few hours with a post that you can actually get a sneak preview of in two of the squares below (along with a hint about Monday’s giveaway). It’s time for our monthly showing of thanks to our sponsors (the folks who help make the other 30+ posts possible) and since summertime is soon coming to a close, we’re using this month’s roundup to squeeze a few more sunny drops out of the season. As usual, they’re not items we’ve been gifted (here’s our no-swag policy) but we did round

Reader Redesign: The White Stuff


Should all brick fireplaces be painted? No way. We always tell anyone who’s on the fence not to touch that brush. But if you’re 100% sure you prefer the look of painted brick, then it can be a great way to bring an airy and light vibe to a room (we sold our first house in two weeks with two painted brick fireplaces so it didn’t seem to be a resale deterrent at all). This makeover from Jamie and Ehren is all about crisping up a space – both with white fireplace paint and some darker blue paint worked in there for contrast on those awesome built-ins. Here’s their letter: Hey YoungHouseLovers! Your blog inspired

Replacing An Exterior Light With An Oversized Lantern


Let’s talk more about things that were too tiny. But instead of yesterday’s mini-mirror, this time we’re taking things outside. To the carport to be exact. See that tiny little lantern hanging from the ceiling? Yeah…. she’s not looking so hot. Rust? Check. Cracked glass? Check. Teeny tiny dollhouse-ish scale? Check. So we’ve been keeping an eye out for a larger light since we moved in back in late 2010. You name it, and we’ve looked there (at stores like Home Depot, online, on Craigslist, at local outlets and secondhand stores like The Habitat For Humanity ReStore, etc). Ideally we wanted a big chunky clean lined lantern in a rich dark oil-rubbed bronze finish and

Trading Our Too-Small Mirror Over The Mantel


We’re reaching the point in our house where we’re finally trying to slowly upgrade the “we’ll-just-put-this-here- for-now-since-we-just-moved-in” phenomenon that happens when you unpack and just toss things anywhere (yes, we are just getting to this phase after over a year and a half of living here, haha). So we finally decided to address this old mirror that used to hang in our first house’s den, which we then popped above our fireplace mantel with a tiny finishing nail the first week we moved in. Why do we need to address it? Because it gotz to go. Why does it gotz to go? Because it’s way too small! Comically small. Here’s an older shot of it

Listy McListerson: Updated


Warning: this post contains more words than a handful of housewives can sling around in one of those two hour reunion episodes. So feel free to skim it or read it in three sentence intervals over the next five years. These posts actually came about when people asked how we organize all the stuff we have on our to-do list. We explained that we basically just have one long run-on document, and when folks kept asking us to share it (and update it as we went along), it sounded like our idea of a good time. So it’s high time that we actually updated it (sorry to everyone who has been asking for this for

There’s A New Chair-riff In Town


Chairs are definitely one of those high/low things for us. In the low category we have our $30 thrift store egg chair… … our $32 stools from a school supply website… … and our $35 secondhand office chairs just to name a few. And then in the “high” category (although I guess that’s all relative since some folks might spend more) we’ve also invested in a few of the chairs. Like the $230 leather chair from Target that we have in our office (which used to live in the master bedroom of our first house)… … the $199 armchair in the corner of our bedroom from Joss & Main… … the two $118 Dolce lounge

Fab Freebie: Let’s Be Honest


*** This giveaway is closed – see who won below!*** The randomly-selected-and-very-lucky lady in this week’s giveaways is… BeccaK (who wishes “I could trust the lube & oil folks when I go for an oil change – is a radiator flush REALLY necessary?”) I’m with ya on that one Becca. Congrats! As much as we love a good looking home, we also like ours to be as good for the Bean and the Burger as possible. So this week we’re dishing out $500 worth of products from The Honest Company to keep your casa clean and green. You may know this family-friendly company thanks of their familiar-faced co-founder, the lovely Jessica Alba. And when you