Monday, September 28, 2015

Ten Reasons Why Fall is My Favorite Season

This time of year is my absolute favorite! Something about it almost makes things feel magical and I look forward to it every year. Here are my top ten reasons why fall is the best!

1. Cooler Temperatures. 
I took this photo on November first last year in Gatlinburg, TN. It was one of my favorite shots I got while we were there.
After the oppressive southern heat and humidity, the cooler temperatures are a welcome respite. I love the mild temps during the day and the cooler nights. It just makes me want to snuggle into a blanket and drink a hot cup of coffee with Pumpkins Spice creamer, of course. 
2. Pumpkin Spice everything.

When I saw this e-card, I chuckled out loud for a couple of minutes before I could move on. It was just so fitting. But really, I love Pumpkin Spice latte's from Starbucks and usually keep some creamer at home during the season. It does seem like everything has pumpkin spice flavors this time of year. I've seen marshmallows and breakfast foods and, yes, even chips. Has the food industry taken the pumpkin spice craze a bit too far? Absolutely! But, I'll happily take it as a sign that my beloved fall is here and just go with it.

3. Leaves and Pumpkins.
Gatlinburg 2014
I absolutely love seeing the leaves change and going to pick out pumpkins. It's a fun thing for our family to enjoy this time of year. 

4. Fall flavors and scents.

Leaves is my favorite scent from Bath and Body Works. Great smelling candle!

I tried Pumpkin Apple this year and it smells divine. A new B&BW favorite.
Don't you agree that the scents of fall are just heavenly? Apples, pumpkin spice, warm cinnamon sugar, and apple cider are all some of my most favorite scents. They're so comforting.

5. Decorating for fall.

Behind Christmas, fall is so fun to decorate for, inside and outside! I love displaying lots of mums and pumpkins outside and making things cozy and warm inside. Oh, and I love fall and Thanksgiving tablescapes. They are so fun to come up with.

6. Football.

While the act of watching football isn't always my favorite thing to do, love all of the things that go along with football season; tailgaiting parties (with all of the party food that goes along with it), friendly rivalries, and, of course, hanging out with friends and family to watch the games. Roll Tide!

7. Gatherings.
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Doesn't it seem like gatherings with friends and family happen more often in the fall? Football viewings, bonfires, cookouts, holiday parties. I just love it!

8. Bonfires and hayrides.

Bonfires and hayrides are so intrinsically fall that I couldn't leave them off of the list. Who cares if you get home smelling like smoke or a stable? There's just something about gathering around an open flame with friends, roasting marshmallows for some yummy s'mores.  Or riding under the stars in a trailer full of hay. So much fun!

9. Fall fashion.

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Aaagghhh! I LOVE fall fashion. Plaids and buffalo check, scarves, cardigans or tunics, boots, and lots of layers! 
10. Friends and Family.

Like I said earlier, gathering with friends and family during this time of year just tops off this season being my favorite. 

I'm so excited that fall is here! (Can't you tell?) What is your favorite season or time of year? Do you love fall as much as I do?

Thursday, September 24, 2015

From Green to Grown-Up Gray

Over the last couple of weeks, I slaved away at painting over the horrid green that had long since given me mental design blinders in the main living areas of our home. When I first painted the green three and a half years ago, I felt it was cheerful and fresh. I wasn't (and still am not) afraid of color and I embraced it. However, I never could get the room to be quite "right". It just never felt cohesive or anything like what I had envisioned for it. And the room ALWAYS photographed a lot greener and neon than it really was. After much lamenting about the HUGE job it would be to paint that large of a space, I just bit the bullet and did it. (And thanks to my friend Ashton for helping me out one day!) It didn't hurt that I was to host a baby shower for one of my best friends this past weekend, so having a deadline put me into high gear to get it all done.

Let me tell you, it was soooo worth it! Once I got it finished, I could almost physically feel a weight lifted off my shoulders. It's like the green pressed down on me and kept me from being able to really progress as far as decorating goes. I was completely and totally stuck, to tell you the truth. The gray has lightened up the space and given me a fresh perspective on what all is possible in the space. I LOOOOOVE it!

I went with Gray Owl by Benjamin Moore. It was the one that didn't read too purple or too blue. It seemed to be just the right shade of neutral for our space. Picking out a paint color was hard, but once I saw the different shades in various areas of our home at different times of day, the choice was easy.

I really feel that my design tastes have matured a bit. I know myself and what I like a little better, and have a better sense of how to pull a room together. (I am by no means an expert. I still have LOTS of learning to do, but I feel like I have grown a lot.) Anywho, this feels like a much more grown-up space. It's almost like I have finally embraced that I am an adult. That concept is still really weird to me because it feels like I was 21 yesterday. But, nonetheless, I'm loving our new "grown-up" space. 

Just to give some perspective of the work we've done since moving into the home, I'm including some before, during, and now photos. I obviously have a pretty blank slate right now. My next step will be to add in some warm wood tones to warm up the space, lots of textures, and small pops of color. Here's the progress in our home:

Butler's Pantry:

Before: when we first moved in.

What it looked like the last three years. 

Now. This space is hard to photograph because there isn't any natural light right here. 



Now. I can't believe how much the gray paint lightens up the space!

Dining Room:

Looking into kitchen from dining room:



And this same area after I added the Chevron Wall.

Side Entry:


I'm still amazed at how different our spaces look now! I really, really, really love it! I can't wait to find some really pretty wood tones to add into the rooms and to see how seasonal decorating plays out with a neutral gray background. Stay tuned for my fall home tour! 

Linking up to:
Before and After Wednesday at The Dedicated House

Monday, September 21, 2015

Scott Antique Market and the Yellow Daisy Festival

Last weekend, my husband and I spent the weekend in Atlanta, along with some of our friends, to attend Scott Antique Market and the Yellow Daisy Festival at Stone Mountain Park. 

Scott Antique Market

Here are some pretties I spied at Scott's. There was so much to look at that I had a hard time focusing and getting decent pictures. Nevertheless, here they are.

I really, really loves these chairs. They were kind of gray washed or white washed with linen fabric and nailhead trim. So gorgeous. 

I was looking for a small table for our foyer and this one with X legs and an antique door for the top caught my eye. 

You really never know what you'll find this interesting sculpture of a hand. And by interesting, I mean strange. I also saw a silverware set held in a small cabinet for over $6000, and one guy was proudly selling segregation plaques. From a historical standpoint, they were interesting, but I couldn't for the life of me think why he thought selling those signs was a good idea. 

I thought this stand up mirror was gorgeous and my hubby thought it was a good idea to pose while I was trying to get a photo. He's so silly.

Framed antique tin ceiling tiles.

I loved these lamps made from old corbels. Such a cool and useful way to repurpose them.

Yellow Daisy Festival

We actually stayed at the Evergreen Marriott at Stone Mountain. I would highly recommend it! They had a couple of restaurants in the hotel, a beautiful pool area with at least four gas fire pits scattered around it, a full spa, and a shuttle service to take you anywhere in the park. We got to enjoy the laser show one night and then the festival the next day.

I did take quite a bit of photos while at the festival, but I didn't see until we got home that photos weren't allowed in order to protect the artisan's work. So, I'll just keep those to myself for that reason. I will, however, show you what I brought home. Although I found lots of pretty furniture, we just didn't have the room to haul it in our car. We had pre-measured our trunk with the seat folded down to see what exactly we could fit, but didn't find anything we like that would fit. Boo! But, I am happy with what I found. 

A family from Ohio had a booth of freshly dried flowers. I love the pussy willow and and the wheat. (I was already on the lookout for wheat for fall decorating, so I snatched them up.)

I got these specialty drink mixes and caramels at the festival. I love having yummy drinks on hand for parties, so I couldn't resist. (It didn't hurt that they had a huge tent set up with tasting stations of all the mixes.) I already used the Coconut Lavender Lemonade at a baby shower yesterday, and it was divine! And I'll use the Caramel Apple Cider at an upcoming fall gathering.

I found this metal yard orb at Scott's. It really is beautiful and I had fully intended to use it in my landscape, but now I'm not sure that I won't keep it inside. So pretty.

I am a huge sucker for letters and numbers! These old sign sign numbers are perfect for holiday decorating. I can't wait to use them at Christmas this year.

This is one of my favorite finds. It's a picture frame made from an antique ceiling tile. I love the rusty patina and the texture on it.

This frame is actually quite large, holding two 8x10 photos. It's made from reclaimed lumber.

This "boo" sign was just the right thing for Halloween. I really don't decorate for Halloween that much at all, but I couldn't pass this up. 

So that's it for our Scott's/Yellow Daisy haul, minus what we got for our girls. We had so much fun shopping and looking at all of the antiques and arts and crafts. Have you ever been to the festival or to Scott's? What's your favorite thing about it? Leave me a comment below!

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