If you follow our Instagram stories, you’ve probably seen the news that we welcomed a new member of the Petersik family recently. But I wanted to take a moment to properly introduce her here on the blog. So… say hello to Penny! After Burger, our chihuahua of 15 years, passed away in October, we were wrecked. It was a huge loss for our family, and in the initial days after Burger’s passing we donated a ton of things he left behind (our vet was able to pass along his treats, food, crate, and heart medication to other dogs in need of those items). Of course we saved a few keepsakes like his collar and blanket,
So much has happened since we last picked up the podcast mic, so we have a jam-packed show to catch you up on all the things. We’re talking house updates, embarrassing stories, renovation plans, and we even worked in some bad metaphorical diagrams (because describing graphs and charts you can’t see always goes over well in an audio format). We’re also diving into how house projects have slowed down around here, the remaining projects on our list, and how our attitude towards having less on our to-do list has changed pretty dramatically over the years. Plus an impromptu musical exercise that captured our family’s contentment for living in a smaller home, and why Sherry can
Our kids are very much into the traditional Jack-O-Lantern-style pumpkin carving, often trying to make a scarier, grosser, or goofier face than last Halloween. They’re plenty capable of carving on their own these days, so it has been fun to let them take full control of their creations, but we still remember a time when toddler-friendly (even baby-friendly!) pumpkin “carving” was the name of the game over here. So we wanted to highlight six unconventional pumpkin decorating ideas for kids (all of which are so simple and fun) that we’ve used in the past. Including a “romantic” one we made pre-kids (yes, I’ll pause while you ponder what exactly can be romantic about a pumpkin…).
Anyone who lives in a small-ish space knows that thoughtful storage can upgrade so many aspects of your life at home when it’s done right (and it can be a daily frustration when it’s not done well or at all). No matter how big your rooms are or how many you have, you just want to be able to access things easily & keep them in a smart spot – and downsizing from our 3150 square foot house to this 1400 square foot home last year definitely challenged us to be even more mindful about how we incorporate the most useful storage systems into our home. Suddenly we were living in 6 rooms (down from
“We just couldn’t figure out why you weren’t tearing out the kitchen.” That’s what one of our contractor’s guys said to us right as we moved in last year. I understood his confusion. We were redoing floors, moving doors, vaulting ceilings, etc – but we left the small old kitchen relatively untouched – complete with mauve laminate countertops. You can see what I mean in this post. But to know us is to know that we strongly prefer to live with an expensive-to-renovate room like a kitchen first, just so we don’t rush into spending major money on big permanent changes that we might later regret or wish that we thought through a little longer.
It’s been a full year in the making, but OUR POOL IS DONE*! Here’s where I imagine someone saying “and the crowd goes wiiiiild” (and the crowd, in this case, is the five members of our household – including Burger shaking a tiny pom-pom). Today we’ve got one HUGE post full of info about the entire process, the budget, and, of course, the finished result. We’re also answering some of the most common questions we got throughout this project. *Well, mostly done. More on that later Neither of us have ever lived in a house with a pool or even in an area of the country where residential pools are very common. So this was
BRB, just changing the name of this blog to “Solving Problems With Plants.” And I know we promised a huge pool post, but the pool is still very much in progress. Hopefully it’ll be done next month and we can write one big breakdown with approximately 473 photos. But back to how plants can not only hide ugly stuff, they can also offer some pretty great privacy, as we’re about to demonstrate below. One of the things that contributes to our house being extra walkable to shops, parks, the beach, and restaurants is that it’s less like a sprawling suburban neighborhood due to the lots being a good deal smaller (you can read more about
When we shared pictures of our front porch last fall, we said that our decorating strategy out here was basically “plants and more plants.” It helps visually connect the porch to all of the greenery surrounding our house and – as we’ll show you today – it’s also helping us hide some less-than-pretty parts of this outdoor area. Let’s call them wall warts. Three large rectangular wall warts. But more on that in a second. First let’s travel back in time to what this all looked like last February when we put an offer in on this house (that’s our realtor in the photo below) As you can see, we’ve already come quite a long
Last week we shared how we built the DIY outdoor hanging daybed that we installed on our front porch. And as promised, I’m back to share how we hung it since, if you’re like me, hanging things that are meant to support the full weight of a human body (or two!) can make you a little nervous. It was actually extremely easy to do. So easy that we did it more than once (ha!) so that it resulted in the smoothest and most non-tipsy sway possible (our first hanging attempt made it tip forward and backwards a bit, which wasn’t ideal). Thankfully the second attempt worked like a charm. Plus it meant we could document
Back in October we mentioned our plans to add a hanging daybed to the covered portion of our front porch and our entire family couldn’t be more excited that it’s finally done. Hanging daybeds like this are super popular in our area, and we’ve always had a soft spot for them. Is there anything better than reading/napping outside on a lazy Saturday afternoon? One of the Airbnbs that we stayed at in Costa Rica last January had one that pretty much cemented our feeling that they’re just about the perfect outdoor lounge spot. Sherry and our daughter spent hours there, each leaning up against a side arm with their legs extended towards each other, reading
We mentioned in this year’s holiday decorating post that we wanted to get some sort of fireplace mantel built this month and, well, Santa delivered! ::pats self on back:: Yes, setting a goal to have a place for hanging our kids’ stockings is a little random, but we were happy to have the motivation to check this project off our list sooner rather than later. If you recall, our fireplace looked like this when we moved in: Here’s a wider shot of that area right after we got here, just for kicks. Ah, those packing blankets as curtains are #MEMORIES. So yeah… it feels good to be here: Sherry did some work to freshen it
Believe it or not, we’ve lived in our new house for over six months now. Half a year! So we thought this would be a good time to check in on some of the goals we had for moving and downsizing to see what has met and exceeded our expectations – along with detailing some of the biggest challenges we’ve encountered along the way. This is going to be long & detailed, because it feels like there’s a lot of ground to cover, and while this rundown will be pretty specific to our situation, I think it’ll still give you a good window into the realities of downsizing that you might also encounter if you