Monday, September 21, 2020

One Year

Guys. It's been ONE year that we've been in our house!!! Can you believe it?! 



One year ago yesterday we started moving in but we actually reached the one year mark of owning our home on September 12th. Let's recap some of the changes that have happened in the last year of home ownership, shall we?

I shared the news that we had officially bought our house and I shared when we moved

Our first project (before even moving in) was painting all of the kitchen cabinets.






I made extensive to-do lists for our house interior and the exterior.




We installed new blinds- finally some privacy!

I organized some kitchen drawers (check back on Wednesday to see inside all our kitchen drawers and cupboards!)




Once that was completed I created some new front gardens. I managed to keep everything alive that I planted! I have been loving having gardens this summer and can't wait to add on next year!

Can you believe we completed all that stuff in our first year here? Tim is currently working on a project right now and I will drop a little teaser picture right here....


Any guesses what we are up to?

Cheers to another year of projects in our first home!






Monday, September 14, 2020

Outdoor Fall Decorating/ Life Lately

To every person who reached out to me through comments/emails/texts after my post last Friday, thank you. It means the world to me that you are here and while my world and story aren't always picture perfect  I am so thankful to have each and every one of you here for it.

On a lighter note today I'm sharing what we've been up to lately...which honestly isn't much! Are you still laying low where you are? In some ways it seems like things are a little more back to normal because I feel more comfortable going into stores, school has started in person/hybrid here, and it just feels like life is a little more normal. However, on the other end of the spectrum everyone is still in a mask all the time, I still work from home nearly all the time, and we don't have a lot of plans besides being around the house! I love being at home so I truly don't mind that part of it, but it leaves me with not too much besides house updates!

This past Saturday my papa and his girlfriend Vivian stopped by to visit us (well mostly Sophie) and it was so nice to have some visitors! Sophie was fairly well behaved and loved being fed a million treats and gaining a new toy. While they were visiting they mentioned stopping at a farm and once they left Tim and I decided to head to a local farm to pick up some outdoor fall decor. We love going to Shickasheen Farm and if you are in the South County area they are a great side of the road farm stand with awesome prices! Our friend Emma and her husband run it along with their family and we loved getting the chance to chat with Emma a bit and pick up a pumpkin and a couple of mums for our front steps. Emma mentioned that they were going to have some more pumpkins soon, so I will definitely be back for some more decor soon!

I love having a bit of fall sprinkled on my front steps. I also recently replaced my front door mat and bought a new buffalo check mat for underneath as well. Both were purchased on Amazon and I love them! Quick question for you, how often do you replace outdoor mats? I am finding that mine wear out super quick, but they are exposed to the elements (no overhang) so I suppose it makes sense. I just assumed they lasted a bit longer, but maybe I just paid no attention when I was younger and living at home!



Oh, football is back! Thanks Soph for the reminder! 

We have been busy drafting fantasy football teams and watching the first week of games. I was quite pleased that the Patriots won on Sunday afternoon and even more pleased when Tampa Bay had a terrible game. Brady and Gronk weren't looking great and I selfishly enjoyed watching those traitors suffer. If you've been around for awhile, you know I have always loved Gronk so I feel a bit betrayed by him. Brady I think all of New England is angry with but I don't know what he expected to happen.

It's nice to have football back on for another bit of normalcy since Tim and I spend most of our Sunday with football on the tv!


We are still going on a lot of walks around here! Tim said to me the other day that no other dog in the neighborhood seems to be getting two walks a day...but this girl does! I have been doing a healthy living program lately and I will talk about it soon, but it is definitely encouraging me to get out and be active every day! 

So that's what's been up around here lately. Let me know what you've been up to!

 

Friday, September 11, 2020

Infertility

 Todays post is a super personal one. One that I never intended to write. One that I don't know if I will even post. 

I've been here before, but every time it happens I feel an ache. This time it hurt more.

We have been trying to get pregnant since last June. It has been 14 months or so. When I went to my annual gyno appointment this spring I mentioned that and she asked what I wanted to do and I told her I wanted to wait until the end of the summer and see what happened. She told me to give her a call if I needed her. Well now my self-imposed deadline has come and I suppose the testing begins. 

I feel like a real life Monica Gellar. I love to clean and organize and I struggle with infertility.

Now, I know some people try to get pregnant for years and might look at my 14 month struggle and think I'm overreacting. I know people who don't struggle with getting pregnant don't understand what this feels like. I know that even my husband doesn't understand how much it pains me every month when I feel like my body has failed me again.

I wonder what I'm doing wrong. I've been taking the vitamins, I'm eating healthy, I'm exercising, I take ovulation tests...why can't my body get pregnant?

What am I doing wrong?

Why can everyone else get pregnant so easily and so quickly? 

Why does everyone keep asking me when I'm going to have kids as if it's something that's easy for everyone to do?

Why does it bother me when I hear other people are pregnant? I swear every blogger/youtuber I follow has all been pregnant or had a baby during the last 14 months.

I know I'm not going to get answers to these questions. I even sent a message to a blogger that has talked about infertility extensively and the only thing she could tell me was that she would pray for me. 

I'm sorry this seems like just a whiney, sad post but I just need to send this into the universe and hope for a change in the future. 

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Fall Decorating!

Well it's officially September and you know what that means.... time for fall decorating!

This past Saturday was rainy and gross so it was the perfect day to haul my fall decor out of the basement and get it set up. I know it seems a little early but this year I was more than ready to change things up in our home since I am home pretty much 24/7 lately! Last fall was our first fall in our home and I didn't buy anything new decor-wise since I had to be so careful about what I had out with a new puppy. After I pulled out my one bin of decor I realized I had a ton of dish towels so I went through and decluttered what I didn't need anymore. Then I realized I don't really have that much decor. I know I don't have a huge space to decorate but I am going to try to start collecting some more decor. 

To see previous years fall decor:

I unfortunately didn't do a post last year on fall decor. I think things were so hectic with moving and getting Sophie!

Here's what my decor looks like so far this year...

 


On the bathroom shelf I placed this small Hocus Pocus pumpkin which I got at The Christmas Tree Shop years ago. I didn't want to do anything too crazy in the bathroom but putting one small little pumpkin brings a tiny bit of fall to this little room.



I know I didn't use this sign last year but I thought that placing it on the kitchen counter was just too perfect. Hopefully we can keep the kitchen counter clear so this is on display all fall. Does your kitchen counter become a collection area??


These towels look SUPER wrinkled but I had just pulled them from the dryer. These are my favorite fall dish towels and I believe they came from the Target dollar spot a few years ago. I only kept a few fall dish towels because my dish towel drawer is overflowing!


The leaves candle from Bath and Body works is my absolute favorite. It smells amazing and I need to place a Bath and Body Works order to restock! I only have one back up right now and that is not enough with how much I love this candle! 


This half wall between the kitchen and the living room is both fun and challenging to decorate. I love that I can do things like this with the leaf garland but I don't always know what to do with it the rest of the year. Do you have any challenging spots to decorate in your home? 



The table by our front door always is super simple because Sophie knocks into it sometimes. I am risking my Mickey Halloween pumpkin here, fingers crossed it makes it through! This little leaf tray is something I found a few years ago (I can't remember where...) but I love little trays and having them around my home!



I placed this glass pumpkin that my mom gave me for my birthday last year (I think from HomeGoods?), more leaf garland, and my little witch on the tv stand.  



Not fall decor related but I pulled this picture of Tim and I from our wedding out of the guest room and placed it out here. Since we got married in the fall I think it is definitely appropriate and I may keep it out here full time. I am still loving my fiddle leaf fig and despite getting a bit dusty it's still going strong!

I plan on decorating outside in a few weeks once the pumpkins become available. Do you have plans for outdoor fall decorating? I am definitely grabbing some mums, I'm thinking of white and a deep wine color. I will also be grabbing a ton of white pumpkins if I can find them and then maybe some mini orange pumpkins for the walkway. I will definitely share pictures once it's completed!

Let me know what you are doing for fall decor this year and what your favorite places to shop decor are!

Monday, August 31, 2020

Fire Pit Built By Tim!

 Tim finished a huge section of our fire pit recently! Before I show you what it looks like now, we have to flashback to what it looked like before...


This is the fire pit we inherited when we bought the house. Clearly a DIY half thought out fire pit. It worked but wasn't very pretty looking. Since we had extra pavers after the walkway project Tim got to work building a new fire pit where the old one was. 


We wanted the fire pit to be larger so we could easily fit a pallet on top if we wanted to. Also since they were bricks and not fire pit pavers, it was a bit harder to line them up. (I mean, I didn't do anything...it was ALL Tim...but I did practice lining them up before we actually started and it was difficult).

The pavers Tim used were these ones. They look great and we bought them when they were 25 cents a piece which was a great deal! Tim used Loctite to glue the pavers together. 




We also had crushed gravel left over from the walkway project so really the only cost was the glue to put this together. However we will be adding a steel bottom to the fire pit and adjusting this slightly because after finishing this Tim announced that pavers can explode due to heat. Scary stuff that we didn't realize before starting this project! We will get the steel insert and then surround the fire pit with white rocks. I really wanted to get Adirondack chairs ordered this year but I cannot find the cheap plastic $20 ones anywhere they are all sold out! So for now we will get the fire pit all set up and next spring I will order the Adirondack chairs.

Here is an inspiration picture for what I want it to look like next spring.


Obviously our fire pit won't have expensive Adirondack chairs and it will be brick based instead of huge rocks but I love the white rocks and white chairs. I may go with a different color though, I'm not sure yet!


I just love how it turned out! I'm lucky that Tim is so OCD and is very precise. He really takes pride in these projects and they end up looking so amazing! I know it's not his choice of weekend entertainment but I love when he works on projects around the house. 


So, still quite a bit to do, but this is shaping up to be a great backyard hangout area! I can't wait for some chilly fall nights by the fire pit! 

Do you have a fire pit? Have you ever built a DIY fire pit? I want to know what your backyard looks like, what features does it have?

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

New Solar Lights

 You guys, I finally ordered some solar lights to light up our front walkway! OneFrugalChick on Instagram posted a deal for Amazon for these solar lights and I was able to snag them for only $13 a 6-pack! I ended up needing 18 lights total so buying three packs worked out perfectly. Although I wish they were more of a white light instead of yellow I am thrilled with how they look for such a cheap price! I had been previously looking at Walmart for clearances out lights but they still weren't getting clearanced out. I was so happy to find these because I knew I wanted to get some in the garden before summer ends. 

The other night I noticed that the lights were starting to turn on one by one at twilight (ayo Twilight fans) so I headed outside to snap some pictures. You can see that some of the lights haven't turned on yet but I love the gentle glow they give off!


Also, the walkway is looking great! A round of applause for Tim on that one!


I think at this point I was just waiting for two or three lights to turn on. They are just enough to give off light if you are coming up our walkway. I'm picturing pumpkins lining the walkway this fall, leading kids up to the door for Halloween. If there is Halloween this year, who knows at this point!


One more light to go! If you head to my instagram (balancingonmytoes) in my home story I have a little video of walking down the walkway towards the house. You can hear the nighttime sounds that we get here in Rhode Island. I love the sound of summer nights here, it's so peaceful with all the wildlife sounds. I love where I live!


When all the lights were finally on I was so happy! It just looks so nice!


These lights are plastic, not glass. I know that may make them "cheaper" but I personally like that they can get bumped around and knocked over and aren't going to shatter. Mostly I prefer things that aren't too precious.  I worry less about Sophie running around like a bull in a china shop when things aren't breakable.


Look at that precious little face in the window! Also, this just reminds me of how far we've come. There were very few gardens, no walkway, no evergreens. We've come so far in such a short time!


Just ignore my heart eyes over here. I'm a little obsessed.


The design on these lights is so pretty too. Look at the glow it sends across the walkway. 

Okay, that's all for my new solar lights! What sort of outdoor lighting do you have at your house? I would love to add some solar lights in the backyard too, but we are still working on our plans for the backyard so we will see what we end up with back there. Tim recently finished part of a project he's been working on and it looks so good, I cannot wait to share it with you all.

Also, I am going to work on my plans for this front garden for next year....and what other plants and plans I have for the yard next spring. Oh, the projects just keep on coming to me!



Monday, August 24, 2020

Our Guest Bedroom

Getting real today!

Our guest bedroom is nothing special. The furniture in it is the furniture I grew up with in my bedroom. The mattress is on the floor and it's Tim's old mattress (although super comfortable!) 
I store my vacuum fleet (yes, I have more than one vacuum and I want more...) in this room. The decor is just kind of thrown in there. 

So yes, nothing special. But to be honest we haven't ever hosted anyone in this room. This is a three bedroom house and when we turned one room into an office, we set up the second bedroom as a guest room. Eventually if we have kids I imagine this becoming a nursery. But for now it's just an extra bedroom in case someone spends the night!



When you first walk in the door you see the dresser with the tv and DVD player on top and my vacuum fleet. Also a signed Gronk picture that is making me a little sad lately.


As you can see this was just a typical day where I didn't clean up for you for pictures. #keepingitreal 
Donations and items listed on poshmark were just sitting on the bed.  


I love this ladder bookshelf but there just wasn't room for it in our living room so I stuck it in here. Maybe if we renovate someday or if we move it will fit out in our living room again. Do you keep furniture even if it doesn't work for you currently?


A look back towards the door. So, as I said at the beginning...nothing exciting! But this room is basically filled with things that didn't work elsewhere in our home. 

Do you have a guest room in your house? How often does it get used?