Our $57 Board & Batten Tutorial (It’s Surprisingly Easy!)


Yesterday you saw how our board & batten project came out for the Pinterest Challenge, so today we’re back with the full tutorial shebang. And hold onto your safety goggles, it’s 2,000 words long. But don’t let all the words fool you, we’d say that this was one of the biggest bang-for-you-buck / most fool-proof ways to make an easy upgrade that we’ve encountered in a while. Wow, just realized I’m five sentences into this and I’ve already said “bang” twice. Not sure if that’s a good sign or what… We had long known that adding some sort of molding feature to our hallway was in our future… and now we’re just kicking ourselves for waiting

Reader Redesign: Yellow, Not So Mellow


You know Sherry and I strive to develop the skill of brevity, so receiving Avis’ submission was a reminder that it can be done. While her email gave us the main parts of her story, her pictures did all of the talking (somewhat literally). You’ll see what I mean below: Sherry and John, HI!  I’m Avis. I started reading your blog this year and fell in love! Although we have no Clara (who is the cutest accessory EVER!) we do have a few Burgers running around the office. Aside from designing stationary I occasionally do DIY re-modeling in my Decatur, Ga condo. I was inspired by you to do a dining room re-do that I

Winter Pinterest Challenge: Board & Batten, Baby!


It’s Wednesday the 27th… so it’s time to share this season’s (completely unofficial) Pinterest Challenge project (not sponsored by Pinterest or anyone else, just dreamed up by Katie to make us stop pinning and start doing). Huzzah! And this season’s challenge was the biggest one we’ve tackled by far. We tried our hand at adding some character with some easy board & batten in our formerly bare hallway. Which now, a week later, is looking like this. Woot! Is it weird that I’ve been sitting on the floor just staring at it? A few folks who had already installed board & batten or wainscoting commented last week to say that pictures don’t do it justice

Listy McListerson: Updated


Warning: this is longer than the Oscars, so feel free to fast forward to the good parts. 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. And it’s high time that we actually updated it considering it has been ten months since we last shared it! Yowsa. In an attempt to keep our eyes from crossing when we read it, we separated what we’ve done in each room

Fab Freebie: City Love


***This giveaway is now closed – see who won below!*** This week’s TWO lucky winners are… Maria G (who loves Kansas City despite being under 12-15″ of snow at the moment) and Fiona (who loves her hometown of Washington DC so much she even loves the traffic). Congrats you two! Today marks the seven year anniversary of our move to Richmond, VA. Woo hoo! It’s crazy to think that it has been that long, and to celebrate this week’s giveaway is from a city-minded artist: Kimberly of Albie Designs. We’ve had her charming illustration of New York City hanging in our hallway o’ frames for as long as there has been a frame collection there

Finishing Touches In The Playroom


Mwah, hah, hah. Picture me laughing like a cartoon villain while rubbing my hands together maniacally. That’s sort of how I feel when I get to the “finishing touches” part of a room. Home stretch bay-bay! Remember how the middle makes no sense? Well, this weekend I think we rounded a corner thanks to a few small tie-things-together updates (you know, between all the board & batten we’re furiously installing/caulking/painting for Wednesday’s big reveal). So let’s take a look-see, shall we? As you can see, we finally got a new sheet set for the daybed (just a basic navy blue 100% cotton set from Target for a twin bed) to replace the worn and faded

Squeezing In Some Craftiness


Since we always share our road trip adventures with the Bowers (like this one, this one, and this one), here’s a long overdue recap of our most recent visit – which included lots of kid fun, a fair amount of antiquing & crafting, and even a little luxurious mom outing for good measure (along with a really cute gift idea). Let’s jump right in, shall we? Oh but for those looking for pictures of us doing sexy exciting things like cutting wood and using a nail-gun, that’s going on as you read this. The soundtrack of the day is bam-bam-bam! Yes, we’ve begun our big board & batten project and can’t wait to share our

A Small Kids Closet That Doubles As A Play Space


The closet in the spare room used to be packed with things like luggage, wrapping paper, gift bags, and a bunch of other clutter that had to be dealt with in order to free up space for actual playing and Clara-storage (since this is now the playroom/big girl room instead of a room full o’ junk). So we took everything out (except for the photo albums & yearbooks up top) and it magically disappeared. Just kidding, it ended up in the guest room closet. Which actually seems ok since we’re on year three of living here (CRAZY!) and we haven’t noticed any guests using the guest closet at all, so it made sense for us

The Big Apple to The Big Peach


This may sound hard to believe – but this is our very last book tour recap post. Yup, all of our scheduled tour stops have officially wrapped up so we’ve just got these last three cities to share our adventures from: New York, Charlotte, and Atlanta. If you want to see our previous recaps, they’re all linked up on this page. And like all the other recaps, this guy is just as long. But I personally think our insane conversation with Mark McGrath (!!!) makes this whole post worth reading. New York City was actually supposed to be sort of our big kick off event back in November. But then Sandy happened and the date

Knock Knock… Who’s There?…


But wait, this is probably our favorite video we’ve ever made, so we’ll let that do the talking. Just allow Clara & Will to explain how you can play along, and please enjoy the outtakes up front, which are my absolute favorite part… Yup, as that sweet as pie video explains, it’s high time for the winter Pinterest Challenge (not sponsored by Pinterest or anyone else, just dreamed up by Katie Bower to make us stop pinning and start doing). I’m still laughing at how quickly I gave up hope on the kids in that video by the way. Way to keep it real $herdog. But you gotta love when two toddlers prove ya wrong… Anyway,

Framing Kid Clothing And Adding A Few Fun Wall Hooks


This adorable handmade poncho was actually brought back from Peru by my amazing sister-in-law a few years ago (thanks Ali!), and I was literally counting down the days until Clara was big enough to wear it. She has gotten a ton of use out of it over the last few years and it even made it onto the cover of a local mag (it was perfect for the holiday colors they were going for). But alas, Clara’s a growing bean, so it’s a little on the small size these days. Which would ordinarily make me want to cry, but I’ve been planning Phase 2 (aka: Operation Keep This Poncho Forever) for a while. $herdog had

Fab Freebie: Get It Done


***This giveaway is no longer accepting entries – see who won below!*** Random.org has done it’s random duty and selected our #ReadyDoneClean winner as… Stephanie B (who hates the clean up part of painting – especially “getting the paint of my hands!”) Congrats! If you despise the prep or clean-up parts of a painting project, this week’s giveaway is right up your alley. Procter & Gamble and The Home Depot are teaming up to help you “Get it ready. Get it done. Get it clean.” Because in addition to the $200 Home Depot gift card this week’s winner will score, they’re also throwing in a Swiffer Sweeper and a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser #ReadyDoneClean Prize

Hanging Decorative Birdcages In A Kids Room


Put a birdcage on it. That’s right, why stop at putting a bird on something when you can put an entire birdcage on it? Follow up question: why stop at one when you can go with three? Sidenote: we’ve gotten a few questions about the brown sheet on the daybed, so the deal with that is that we still haven’t picked up sheets for the bed, but they’ll most likely be navy and most definitely won’t be that crazy old tan sheet that has been on this daybed for around six years! Haha. So just try to ignore that for now if you can. But back to the birdcages. I’ve been itching to hang these

January Superlatives: From Big Girl Room to Big A$$ Coat


We can’t believe we’re halfway through February already (January was kind of a blur). So in an attempt to take a minute and appreciate the things that we checked off the ol’ list (which keeps our momentum up and combats any “we didn’t get anything done” nagginess that sneaks up when the to-do list is still super long), here’s our yearbook-superlative-style January round-up. And if you want to look even further back, we’ve got each month of the last two years summarized right here in 24 posts instead of 840. But let’s start with something not-yet-blogged about (and an off the wall theory about bacon and mustaches)… Most Likely To Sport A Mustache: Anyone in

How To Make A Fast & Easy Floating Frame


Let’s make a floater, shall we? Somewhere Katie B is chuckling, because I just used the term “floater” (the video at the bottom of this post might explain that weird maybe-you-had-to-be-there-joke). Anyway, the point is that I did a little frame-hack that’s super easy, free if you have a few basic items on hand, and only a few bucks even if you don’t. So for anyone out there who likes the look of a floating glass frame but doesn’t want to pay around twenty bucks for one, you can probably use an old frame that you already have to whip one up. This frame started out like any other normal backed-in-that-wood/cardboard-type-stuff that most frames are

Some Sweet Valentine’s Day Goody Bags For School


This post will cover two important issues: How we whipped up 16 Valentine’s Day goody bags for Clara’s classmates for 43 cents each (literally in the final hour, thanks to an 8pm run to Target last night) How hilarious Hey Girl memes are (and a fun way to show your man you love him, or just freak him out – could go either way) First we’ll dive into the Valentine’s Day goodies that we whipped up (with some Clara-help of course) for her classmates. The first thing we did was troll the aisles of Target (we hit up The Dollar Spot, and Valentine’s Candy section, and the kid’s party aisle, just to check out everything

Choosing The Right Lamp Shade Pendant


I kinda want to jump on The Voice bandwagon. Not in the sense that I want my shot at getting Adam Levine to turn his chair for me – at which point I would look him dead in the eye and say “keep your hands off my woman, Levine!” (it never hurts to lay clear boundaries with a guy like him). I want to jump on the bandwagon in the sense that The Choice (spinny chairs meets dating), The Taste (cooking) and The Face (modeling) have. Only my spin-off would be called The Shade and it would be a competition to find “the next great light for Clara’s big girl room.” And no one would

Buyer’s Remorse? Purchasing Paralysis?


Q: “How do you know when you’re investing in the right piece for a room? I’m paralyzed to pull the trigger and then later realize the table, curtains, or rug I’m currently eying aren’t ‘the answer’ for my room and then spend years regretting them.” – Melissa We get a lot of questions like this one. So after around six years spent decorating two houses on a pretty modest budget, with a nice heaping portion of mistakes and trial and error worked in there, here’s what we’ve learned. We definitely don’t get it right every time. Sometimes we’re too risky, and sometimes we’re too safe, and sometimes the proportion or the size of something is

Fab Freebie: Be Jeweled


***This giveaway has reached is now closed – see who won below!*** Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! And an especially happy one to our randomly selected, lucky winner who goes by the name of… Oona (who will likely celebrate tonight with dinner at “a lovely vegan restaurant”). Congrats Oona! We love celebrating Valentine’s Day with you guys by giving away some free jewelry, and this year Sherry’s especially stoked because the prize is coming from none other than Kendra Scott – one of her favorite places to request that I buy her earrings for various occasions (like the past two Christmases). Kendra Scott has definitely earned me a few husband points, so this (are you ready

Small Wall Ledges For Flash Cards, Postcards Or Books


Aw yeah, we’re living on the ledge. We’ve been waiting to hang our postcard shelves from our first house’s office for over two years and we finally found the right spot for them. Ba-dow: We detailed the whole how-we-made-them process here (you should click that just to see how tiny Clara was) so here’s how we adapted them for this space: we measured how wide the dresser that would sit under them was (we thought they’d look top-heavy and odd if they were a foot longer, which they were at first) we lopped off the extra length on a miter saw, so they were all 2″ narrower than the dresser that sits under them we

The Wild Wild West


Can you believe it’s been three weeks since our last tour update? But even though you haven’t heard much about it, we’ve been on the road (and in the air) quite a lot lately. It took us nearly to the end of our book tour, but we finally made it all the way to the other side of the United States. So let’s dive right in with our recap of our stops in all three west coast states. #warningitslong We started off in Tacoma, Washington at the Tacoma Home & Garden Show on Friday, January 25th. The people running the show did a great job getting the word out that we’d be there, even scoring

Trying Annie Sloan Chalk Paint And Soft Wax


Dudes and dudettes, I finally tried chalk paint. And yes, I just broke out dudettes. Gutsy move for 2013, eh? Anyway, many of you guys have asked if I’ve given Annie Sloane chalk paint a go, and now that I have, here are the details. First of all, here’s how we used it: John and I brainstormed a few possibilities for the table that we cut down and the two thrift store chairs that we found in West Virginia (they were $8 each) for a while. Here are a few alternatives that we tossed out there: red chairs with a white table red table with white chairs navy table with red chairs navy table with

Spreading The Love


Valentine’s Day is about a week away (wink wink, fellow husbands) so we’re using this month’s usual showing of appreciation for our sponsors (the people who make our other 30+ posts possible every month) as an excuse to celebrate love, romance, and those abundant Valentine-y colors of pink and red. As you know by now, we haven’t been given any of the items shown below (here’s our no-swag policy) and there are some good ol’ discounts at the end if you’re interested in showing your love while saving some loot. Oh and there’s a hint about Monday’s giveaway hidden in here too, so feel free to guess away… Bright quotes & illustrations from the cheeky

How To Hang A Frame Collage With A Sheet Of Paper


We finally got a frame grouping up on the wall in the playroom/future big-girl room. And as predicted it was definitely inspired by the bean. It’s full of things we think will be helpful and fun for her, and when it came to hanging it we tried a little alternative to our usual paper template method (which we outlined here when we hung our hallway frame wall). This time around we tried an old Candice Olson trick. Basically you use a giant roll of paper to make one big template (we used some protective paper from Home Depot leftover from our kitchen reno). Do you guys remember when she used to do this all the