Monday, August 30, 2010

Can I Get It All Done?

Okay, so it's late and I've worked a very long day but I couldn't go to bed before I passed on the greatness that I stumbled upon on Martha Stewart's website.

It may be the television producer/wedding planner in me but I'm a sucker for for checklists. Yes, I'm that girl! That's how I get everything done in my life! It gives me some kind of sick satisfaction to cross off tasks. And I'll even share a little secret with you... if I've completed a task that didn't make it on the to-do list, I'll add it to the list after the fact just so I can check it off (shhhh!)

I even got teased a few years ago when I was planning Christmas dinner because I typed up a to- do list/schedule in pretty Christmas colors (But nobody was complaining when we ate on time because of my trusty little list.

(Yes, I did take a picture of my list!)

So why not go to the mother of all party planners, Martha Stewart, for some fabulous checklist tips?

Martha posted this on her facebook page and website a few days ago. Planning a baby shower? What about a bridal shower? Maybe you are getting a head start on your holiday plans? Well, Martha has it all. She even has a checklist to help you prep for overnight guests.

Check it out...or off (pun intended!)-- you won't be disappointed if you enjoy lists as much as I do.

Happy planning!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Bathroom Baskets: Make Your Wedding Guests Feel at Home

The hubby and I recently traveled to Lake George, NY, to coordinate a fabulous wedding at The Inn at Erlowest. I'll be sharing the full 411 on that wedding next week, but for now, I wanted to show you the adorable bathroom baskets and poems I whipped up to make our guests feel a little more at home.

It was an outdoor wedding so when our guests got a little hot and sticky, they were thrilled to find the baskets that the bride and I put together. The baskets came from
Lowe's for around 8 bucks each. And we loaded them up with dental floss, lotion, soap, body spray, band-aids, bug spray, spray deodorant, mints... and much, much more.

I snagged a few frames that were on clearance from Target and printed the poem with the bride and groom's monogram. The frames actually had a few scratches on them that were pretty noticeable because the layer beneath the navy blue paint was white... but I really was trying to save the bride as much
moolah as possible, so I bought them anyway. Then, once I got them home, I just rubbed a little bit of blue eyeliner over the scratches and they were as good as new!

And just in case you were wondering, here are the words to the poem.

So happy you are here to share in our special day!
But should something happen to go astray,
Please help yourself to the contents within…
Hair spray, hand lotion, gum and even aspirin…
Use only what you need and leave the rest,
It may be useful to another guest.
So repair the damage that may have been done…
Then hurry back and join the fun!
Compliments of the Newlyweds
-Brigid and Steve

It's the small things that can make your party guests feel so very special. You may be thinking this post isn't for you because there isn't a wedding in your near future... but not so fast! This poem can go for any party. Those holiday
soirees are right around the corner, so file this away under "I need to remember this." A little goes a long way to make your visitors feel extra special.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

A Luggage Laden Living Room

As I've mentioned before, we bought ENORMOUS furniture when we first moved. I don't know what I was thinking. Furniture always seems to look so much smaller when it's in the store.

Downsizing the furniture to fit the our space was my number one motivation for our living room re-do. I wanted it to go from cramped to cozy. I also wanted to bring in different textures and I thought vintage luggage would do the trick.

I scored an old trunk at a local antique store. The trunk now has a happy new home as my coffee table in front of the sofa. It needed a little help in the height area so I just bought some table legs at Lowes; painted them; drilled some holes in the bottom and shoved those legs in and secured it with a little bit of glue. It went from an old trunk to an awesome table in just minutes!

And I didn't stop there when it came to using luggage in the living room. I picked up two more suitcases; one brown and one black. Now that the brown hard covered suitcase is nestled nicely atop the the black suitcase, it makes a wonderful side table between my two slip covered chairs. So there you go... my luggage laden living room.

We're getting closer to the full reveal of the living room. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Meet Our Fur Babies...

So far you have met me and you've met my hubby-- virtually, of course but that only makes up half of the Boyd clan. We don't have children, but we have two pets that we adore.

Mittens is our 8 year old feline. She's a 20 pounder... and no matter how much we try to put her on a diet, she is destined to be large and in charge.

Does this picture make me look fat??
(Okay, so she's not really as big as that picture makes her look. Some creative camera angles makes images appear larger than they really are.)

Speaking of being in charge, she definitely is just that-- in charge. Even though she would be in the heavy-weight class of her kind, she is the smaller of our two pets but she puts her "paw" down, making sure our pup knows she's the boss.

Our pup is Brinkley, the Goldendoodle... and he's my baby! And yes, for those of you that recognize that name-- he was named after the golden retriever in "You've Got Mail." He joined our family at just 11 weeks old. He came home to stay on February 15th (Happy Valentine's Day to me!) He certainly has won my heart. At the moment, he is about 60 lbs but once full grown, he'll reach the 90 lb mark.

These two keep us on our toes. They both have done their fair share of damage to newly finished projects.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Fancy That Fireplace

When we moved into our house almost six years ago, our little cape was anything but cozy. One of the things that added to the "anything but" feeling in the home was the fireplace. It had dark brick and an even darker and OLD faux stone hearth. U-G-L-Y!

For the first five years of our time here I contemplated painting the brick... but my husband wasn't a fan of the idea. After being in the real estate world, he worried that when it came time to sell, buyers wouldn't be happy that they couldn't reverse my lighter and brighter painted brick.

I guess you could say that after five years of staring at the dark brick I came to despise it... so when my husband out bringing home the bacon, I made a quick trip to the store to pick up some paint. I painted the brick four different colors before settling on the bright and crisp snowflake white that currently covers the fireplace. I have to say I'm quite pleased with it.

Doesn't it seem that one project always leads to another? Well, this quick fix fireplace makeover sure did. Now that the white paint had brought new life to our living room, it also made the old faux stone on the hearth look twice as dingy... so off to Lowe's I went to check out the clearance stone. Keep in mind I had NEVER tiled before and I certainly didn't have the tools to cut tile so I had to get creative. With more help from my friends "trial and error" (and a panicked call to a friend for some advice on grouting) I made it through and got the tiles down. It's definitely not perfect-- the border around the tiles is a bit amateur and the tiles aren't exactly straight... but as we've heard in the DIY blog world before, "it doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful."

P.S. Our sunroom (which is also my office) has that same red faux mosaic brick. I'm thinking about painting the floor but I'm not sure that's the best way to go. I know it needs to be covered. What do you think about floor paint?

Link from here to Funky Junk Interior's SNS #49 for more featured fireplaces.

Monday, August 16, 2010

I "Shutter" To Think...

Okay, so I don't really shudder to think but I couldn't resist the corny pun. We’ve started a complete overhaul on much of house. The living room is getting a total makeover… we are talking, a TOTAL new look. Once I decided that we’d be continuing the beach cottage look in much of the house, I just knew that I wanted to find the perfect shutters to use in our living room. After my friend Ashley of It Rocks To Be A Knox, showed me many of the antique stores in our area, I just knew she and I would find my shutters on one of our antique shopping sprees. When I came across these bad boys at a store called “Country Boy Antiques”, I just knew they had to be mine. These shutters made my heart flutter! But it was no easy find. This was a down and D-I-R-T-Y story. What many would consider junk was piled high. We are talking floor to ceiling and back to front. Ashley and decided this was not a store to wear open toed shoes in just in case roaches and rats decided to pay us a visit (not kidding!) The owner goes around to different homes and saves old doors, hardware, fireplaces (and of course shutters!) before homes are demolished. Once I saw them, I just knew they’d make the perfect statement in my living room. So after we finished painting the living room Benjamin Moore’s “Cream Fleece” in an eggshell finish, we slapped these 7 ft tall shutters on our wall. I think these may end up being my favorite part of the room. As I look at them, I like to imagine the house that these may have come from. And who lived in the house? How many families got to enjoy these shutters before the shutters landed a spot in my newly decorated living room? And while I’ll never get an answer, it’s fun to let my imagination run wild.

P.S. maybe a small part of me did shudder to think about all the little creepy crawly things that could have taken up residence in my new-to-me old shutters… so just to be sure my house didn’t become an insect motel, my shutters spent a couple of weeks and a few rain showers outside before they were allowed inside my house.

P.S.S. Stayed tuned to see the newly decorated living room that these shutters are in.

Welcome to The Cozy Cape

We are just a guy and a girl that are walking through life together, hand-in-hand. I’m a TV producer by day; a wedding planner by night; and a DIY deal-seeker when the weekend rolls around. I’m always up to something and I rarely sit still. Two years ago, my husband quit his full time job as a real estate agent to follow his long time dream of becoming Brandon Boyd, MD. That’s right! A DOCTOR! It’s been an interesting ride—the good, the bad and the ugly. The MCATS are behind him (as of a week ago) but test scores, school applications and med school interviews await him in the near future before his medical school career begins in the fall of 2011… but for now we are nestled nicley into our cute little Cape.
Five years ago, we stumbled upon our little 3 bedroom, 1 ½ (and I use half lightly!) bathroom Cape Cod. It had only been 8 months since we had moved into the house we were living in and it had only been one month since we finished a massive renovation… but our little Cape was calling our name. Brandon actually discovered our High Street House when he went on an appointment to sell the house; but instead, at the end of the appointment I received a phone call.
“Hi Hon!”
“Hi, how's the house”
"Well, they don’t want to list BUT I really think you should come look at the house.”

“For what?? We JUST moved 8 months ago... and I definitely don’t want to live in Portsmouth."
I didn't want to live in Portsmouth because in order to get... well, ANYWHERE from Portsmouth, you have to travel through a tunnel. And tunnel=traffic; And traffic=stress; and stress= an unhappy Heather. But an hour later, I stepped over the threshold of the house we would soon make our home…. for the second time that year. The 1951 Cape Cop held so much potential and it was calling my name. Plus, as soon my eyes spotted the hardy plaster walls (which have morphed into a love/hate thing every time I hang a picture) and freshly refinished hardwood floors, I knew we’d soon be signing on the dotted line. I have a thing for hardwood floors. Somehow, the hardwood floors acted as blinders to the teeny tiny closets, the one full bath, the UGLY paint job and the many DIY projects that the previous owners had attempted with very poor results. None of it mattered. 30 days later, those hardwood floors… the bad paint job… the bigger mortgage… and all the other little quirks all belonged to us.
At that point I really didn't have a defined decorating style. I bought furniture without measuring (which you’ll soon see we purchased MASSIVE furniture); I picked paint colors that soon hated; and I just didn’t have a style that defined me… and us.
Fast forward to December 2009: I had the honor and joy of meeting Kevin and Layla Palmer of The Lettered Cottage. Layla designed an amazing beach cottage master bedroom for us. I knew that shabby chic, beach cottage look always made me smile… but it wasn’t until Layla asked me to send her some inspiration pics, that I realized that d├ęcor had to make its way into other parts of our home. Once our master bedroom was done with the Lettered Cottage touch (okay, MAJOR elbow grease!), I knew the entire house had to follow suit in the very near future. And that brings us to now. We are currently converting much of the house into our new found shabby chic beach cottage style… so grab a paint brush and join the fun.