Another Year Of Our Thanks Jar


For the fourth year in a row we’ve filled up our little thrift store jar that we etched with the word “Thanks” back in 2010 (you can read how we made it here). So before everyone dives headfirst into the gravy bowl (what? that’s not a thing?) we thought we’d stick with the annual tradition of sharing a few glimpses of some things that ended up on the list this year. Spoiler alert: one of them’s you guys. So let’s just pause for a moment so I can tell you how good your hair looks and how nice you smell and how flattering that shirt is and most of all, how grateful we are that

Wendy’s Dilemma: Ideas Anyone?


We’re not sure how many of you are knee deep in a turkey somewhere (wait, that sounds terrible) but there’s nothing we like more than a group brainstorming session, so if you’re around, Wendy would love your suggestions. She has an exterior issue and she’s ready to dive right in (you know what that means… after pics! Hopefully really soon!) so here’s her letter: I’ve been a YHL reader since house #1 and I’m so excited that you’ve started this group advice feature!  I have a problem I hope you and your readers can help with. We’ve lived in our home for about four years, and the front needs a major paint job. It’s a

Painting The Ceiling A Little Darker (And Glossier)


We’re doing Children’s Hospital stuff today, but a bunch of you noticed a foyer ceiling update in the background of yesterday’s post, so we owe you those details. We actually knocked it out before the big kitchen paint-fest, but that post cut the line because it was too exciting to save for later and we have the patience of toddlers (not to be confused with having the body of a baby). We usually hate painting ceilings (big rooms = sore backs) but the foyer’s a relatively small swatch of space, so I ended up just rolling the whole thing while Sherry knocked out some simple cutting in around the edges. Two coats later, we were

Fab Freebie: Farm Fresh


On this Thanksgiving week, Antique Farm House is offering up some fun and festive goods. This sale site that was started by two sisters specializes in (you guessed it) farmhouse style decor and vintage reproductions. And you can grab them for up to 80% off retail prices during their sale events. Every day they announce new deals that epitomize the shabby chic and industrial vibe – from furniture and accessories to storage and tableware. And considering the prices, the $500 gift card that someone’s winning this week could go a long way… Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter (it might take a second to load, but it should eventually pop up below this

Painting Dark Trim & Paneling In The Kitchen


Y’all ready for this? Yes that was a Jock Jams reference. And yes, I can still get down to that. Not sure about the video though… Remember when the kitchen looked like this back when we first laid eyes on our house? Whelp, now it looks like this… It’s crazy how different certain angles look in person. It’s like walking into the room and wondering who added five extra lights. It’s just so much brighter. Yes, we dove headfirst into priming and painting the kitchen baseboards, crown molding, and window trim (52. freaking. panes.) and ended up just going all out and tackling the paneling and the doors to the pantry and the garage while

A Little Holiday Excitement


Heads up: this post might be a bit of a smorgasbord. I think it’s because life has been feeling kinda smorgasbordy lately (in a good way) and sometimes it’s hard to organize life into tidy, tightly-themed blog posts when it’s really all over the place behind the scenes… I say it’s “in a good way” because we feel like we’re really starting to gain momentum around a goal that we mentioned in this post of taking on more “off-campus” projects. In other words, projects that aren’t centered solely around improving our own spaces and, in more than one case, are for a good cause. The Homearama Showhouse that we’re doing for Habitat For Humanity, being

Weekly Crafty: Making A Playful Kid Clock


This week I was actually inspired by a request from Clara, which came by way of John’s mom. She was laughing as she told me that she overheard Clara telling her cousin that she didn’t have a clock in her room. Random, right? So I thought: I’ve never made a clock… but I bet I can make her something fun – maybe even something that she can interact with somehow. They sell those clock kits, so it can’t be too hard, right? So here’s where I ended up… And here it is living it up on the wall in Clara’s room. I originally thought it could be fun to use a birdhouse and add the

Who’s More Sick Of Removing Wallpaper Than I Am?


A: Nobody B: You guys, since this is my fourth time waging war on it C: I’m Ron Burgundy? D: All of the above The answer, my friends, has to be D. Ah, how naive and thrilled I was when this whole wallpaper expedition began. Remember these famous last words? “I was actually really excited to tackle the half bathroom’s wallpaper removal project” Well, that tiny half bathroom was just the tip of the wallpaper iceberg, and then we moved onto stripping it in the foyer (which was doubled up in a few places) and the kitchen (my biggest room yet) and there were still two more rooms full o’ wallpaper just taunting me with

Listy McListerface: Updated


So sorry to everyone who requested an update on this sooner! We first shared our new house to-do list back in May and later updated it at the end of July, so this check-in is well overdue. But one fun thing about going longer than you meant to before updating a list is getting to cross things off like crazy. Picture me grinning maniacally for a far too extended period like the people in this video who think they’re getting their photos taken while the camera’s really on video mode. These posts came about when people asked us how we organize all the stuff that we have on our to-do list and we explained that we

Fab Freebie: It’s A Little Bit Bunny


Virginia-raised Bunny Williams has made quite a name for herself in the interior designer world thanks to years of designing some pretty amazing rooms (which you can see in magazines, her books, and even on her Facebook page). So when she offered an upscale mirror from her line of furniture and decor items at Bunny Williams Home to one of you guys, we said “done deal.” So this week someone’s gonna win one of these three statement mirrors: the textured Ruffled Mirror, the sleek Garbo Mirror, or the curvacious My Pretty Mirror – which range from $900 to over $1600 in value! Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter (it might take a second to

Call It Vanity, Call It Shelf-ishness


It has been nearly a month since we talked about stenciling the floor in our sink nook (we’re all over the place lately – Clara’s room, outdoor tiling, installing our stair runner, landscaping adventures, starting in on the kitchen, etc) but that doesn’t mean we were done in there. We had a few more bullets to check off: sealing those stenciled floors loading in the closet after the floors dried (hopefully with more function/storage instead of the stuff we thoughtlessly shoved in there when we moved) updating the vanity with more function as well as a fresh finish (up close it was in pretty rough shape, and we thought we could gain more function from

Lookin’ At Lights


Our exterior light situation is a little ho-hum, as evidenced by this tiny fixture outside the back door on our garage (don’t mind the grimy green brick that’s screaming out for some scrubbing). And yes, I realize the door itself is looking a little rough. It originally sported a rusty, loudly-banging storm door (not just a medium bang, this was SCARE-YOUR-NEIGHBORS LOUD) that we removed. So we’re getting ready to repair some of the trim and prime/paint it white to match the door in the sunroom veranda that we already updated. But let’s turn our attention back to the light. It was too small and very weather-worn, so we decided it was time to make

Weekly Crafty: Painting A Homemade House Portrait


This week’s craft project has me skeered, I’m not going to lie. For the past month and a half I’ve had fun doing a simple and quick crafty thing each week, like making a fall wreath, stenciling a pillow, painting baskets, decorating pumpkins & gourds, making vacation keepsake globes, and taking ceramic paint for a spin on a bowl full of colorful cacti. Each of those projects took under an hour, and they were pretty easy and straightforward (paint this, wrap this around that, caulk this) – so I don’t know what got into me this week and whispered “how about painting a little portrait of your first house?” It easily took me five times

Landscaping In Fast Motion


Update: Things are really picking up with the Habitat For Humanity showhouse (ahh! the foundation is being laid and framing starts next week!) so there will be some Wednesdays without an afternoon post. Thanks for understanding! Fall is the best. It’s my favorite (well, that and smiling). I love it because the weather rocks my socks and most years we’re treated to several weeks of beautiful fall colors. Yet somehow we always find ourselves rushing to accomplish something each autumn. One year it was trying to sell our first house before the leaves fell (along with our curb appeal). Last year it was cramming things in before setting off on our book tour. And this

Meghan’s Dilemma: Ideas Anyone?


You guys. You’re varsity. Once again, I was blown away by the 500+ awesome and fun ideas that you shared – along with some pretty amazing photoshop skillz – for Jamie’s design roadblock last week. There’s nothing like a group brainstorming session, and Jamie’s so excited about all of the options she has to explore (and has promised us after pics when she’s done). So let’s dive right into Meghan’s dilemma, because I can’t wait to hear your take. Say hello to my little friend! Yes, I have a giant Scar Face bathtub. My husband and I bought our 1987 home a little over a year ago. We have been up to our eyeballs in

Fab Freebie: Bling Bling!


Happy Veteran’s Day guys! First we want to say thank you to the men and women currently serving our country and to those who have bravely done so in the past (like my dad, my grandfather, and Sherry’s grandfather). We’re so grateful. And now, onto the giveaway… Who doesn’t need a little more gold in their life? This week someone’s getting $350 to spend at Hattan Home, which is well stocked with decor, accessories, and jewelry that can inject a little (or a lot) of sparkle into your home. But even if you’re not looking to live the lavish lifestyle of owning your very own golden piggy bank (Sherry’s dream of all dreams) there are

Stairs & Stripes (Installing A Stair Runner)


Last week we promised you the final update on our stair runner project, and here it is! And now for the nitty gritty of how we got here. Hint: we finished installing it less than 20 hours ago. Nothing like a nail biter… Wednesday, November 6th – LATE AFTERNOON: Time to paint those risers. We saved this step to the very end of the project, just to see make sure we didn’t rush into it and live to regret it. But once everything else was painted and the runner was here, we laid it out with the unpainted risers and were finally 100% sure we’d prefer them painted (like this inspiration image) so we finally

Pick This, Not That: Finding The Right Paint Colors


Two weeks ago when John shared this post about the times that we’ve made bad painting decision, we received a bunch of requests for a follow up post in the comments: Q: I guess I just have a hard time picking colors because I have a hard time telling which swatches have grey or brown undertones. Maybe you can show some swatches (of say the teal from the built ins). One that has a grey or brown undertone and one that is more saturated? It might be helpful to see them side by side! – Aubrey Q: Thank you for this! I actually think tip #3 (pick a muddier color) surprised me the most because

Weekly Crafty: Taking Ceramic Paint For A Spin


Sorry to anyone looking for Weekly Crafty posts on Tuesdays, it seems that they’ve shifted to Thursdays for the past two weeks! Since my hands are still recovering from staple pulling, more wallpaper peeling, and more painting (we’re doing our stair risers today so we can hopefully install the runner this weekend and have that post for you on Monday), I wanted to pick something fun & easy for this week’s crafty little endeavor. And here’s where I ended up: with a big ol’ hand-painted planter full of succulents and colorful cacti. You know I like sharing house plants that we’re adding/loving/killing every once in a while (like this and this), and this project all

Reader Redesign: What’s Black, White & Purple All Over?


Last fall we featured a redesign that Nancy did for her son Owen. Well, she’s back with another awesome room makeover… but this time it was for another family with a great story. Here’s her letter: Hi John and Sherry! A while back, I entered the contest Creating with the Stars hosted by East Coast Creative, and I was teamed up with Kari from U-Create. I had the wonderful opportunity to makeover a space for a couple who have been trying for over ten years to get pregnant. Accepting this may never become a reality, they are in a foster to adopt program and are adopting three siblings. KK is the youngest out of the three

Removing Old Stair Carpet (And 600 Staples)


We’ve never been more all over the place than we have been lately (Clara’s room, the master bath, the kitchen, the sunroom veranda) and we can’t believe it has been around a month and a half since we last mentioned our staircase. Several of you have been eager to hear about the new runner that we ordered, and we’ve been eager to tell you all about it (it was back-ordered and arrived a little behind schedule, but it’s finally here). But the last vestiges of the old carpet in this house were standing in our new runner’s way… When we finally removed the carpet from our master bath, the stairs became the sole remaining carpet

Jamie’s Dilemma: Ideas Anyone?


We’re finishing up some stair-runner prep today (painting walls and ceilings, and let’s just say the old runner isn’t leaving without a fight), so John will be back with the full rundown for you tomorrow. In the meantime, I couldn’t wait to share Jamie’s design roadblock and hear what you guys would do. We had so much fun sharing Shannon’s dilemma last week. I knew you’d have awesome ideas, but never could have guessed that 500+ comments (some with links to photoshopped ideas and more!) would come rolling in. And we’ve heard from Shannon, who can’t wait to get started and has promised to send us photos when she’s finished! So let’s dive right into

Fab Freebie: Lovely Lulu


Lulu & Georgia is an online decor boutique that recently marked their first anniversary – and to celebrate, someone’s getting $500 to spend on their stylish assortment of rugs, pillows, and other home decor. The site’s name is a feminine spin on the founder’s grandfathers (Lou and George) and that angle continues to products they carry, which cover the gamut from fresh and girly to rustic and industrial (there’s enough ceramic and gold to keep Sherry happy for a very long time – especially in their gifts section). Oh and they’re giving everyone 20% off now through November 7th with the code YOUNGHOUSELOVE20. Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter (it might take a

Removing Some Kitchen Cabinets & Rehanging One


Well, that can of worms is officially open. We’ve started making some changes in the kitchen. I realize this isn’t totally new news, since we removed the wallpaper in there a few weeks ago, but towards the end of last week we used that little jolt of momentum to start down the path of some more serious changes. We still want to live in this house for a nice long time (and save up some money) before we take on our full kitchen reno – we’re still changing our minds daily about what configurations and countertop materials we’d like for the long haul – but this is officially the beginning of a series of what