Sunday, March 16, 2014

Happy St. Patricks Day! & Irish Ancestry

Happy St. Patrick's Day! To be honest, I have never really celebrated St. Patty's Day much. Sure, I may have worn something green to avoid getting pinched, but that was it. I'm not sure why, maybe it was because I didn't think I was Irish, maybe I wasn't in the mood to wear green, maybe it was because I was just ready to move on to Easter and spring, who knows....but I can now say I have a new view of this day! A day to celebrate being Irish! 

           One of my hobbies is genealogy. I love digging into family history, it is like an addicting treasure hunt where you find something new each time you dig. Digging to your roots, the people, places, and history that got you here today. At times it feels as if history comes alive when you make new connections and discoveries. I thought I knew my family history pretty well, until I asked for an DNA test for Christmas. I was so excited to do this! Even though I knew the names and dates of my ancestors, being an American, it was hard to know where all my ancestors who came to this country over 200 years ago, exactly came from. 

I sent in my saliva sample, and waited for what seemed like an eternity! It was 8 weeks, but it felt like a year, I was so excited to see scientific proof of my ancestry. I was curious if there would be any surprises, something unexpected.........

The Whiteley Family- 1916
(My great, great grandfather Fred High, holding my great grandfather Tim High)
(My great, great grandparents William Marion and Mary Carr Whiteley)

Then, the email came! I held my breath and clicked the link, and there it was, Irish! I am almost half Irish! (And to my daughter's delight, some french thrown in the western European part.) I was very surprised, I had discovered two Irish links in my research, but never thought I had that much Irish. I am thrilled to have discovered my celtic roots, and I am proud to now say that I am Irish.

Needless to say, I have some making up to do in the Irish celebration department! I decided to add some touches for St. Patrick's Day in honor of my discovery this year. It was challenging to find pieces that weren't plastic and green.

I then found something I loved from Dear Lillie  Jennifer Holmes from Dear Lillie makes beautiful chalkboard prints. I ordered this Irish Eyes are Smiling print from her store. If you haven't ever seen her blog or store before, you must. Everything she does is simply stunning!

 I have decided to give myself some time to find some meaningful Irish pieces to add for my decor in the future. Part of the fun is in the hunt, right?

I added some Irish clovers my mother gave me to my new little cafe corner, I have a post coming about my new table soon. It's a fun story. :)

Irish breakfast tea, anyone?

      I hope to travel to the Emerald Isle one day. What a beautiful place to visit!

Speaking of traveling, my sister and I had an amazing time in San Francisco with Benefit Cosmetics a few weeks ago!! A post coming on that soon also!

The Lobby of Benefit Cosmetics, can you say WOW? I was so awestruck with this room.

And we got a good start on the kid's bathroom, here is a sneak peek! We still have flooring, a mirror, and vanity to do.

I hope you have a Happy St. Patrick's Day! Do you have any plans or traditions for this day? I would love to hear about them if you do!

Be Blessed,

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Monday, January 20, 2014

Looking Back & Looking Forward -A New Year!

Happy New Year! I know it is Jan. 20, but I thought I would still share my New Years thoughts and a look back at 2013. 2013 was a good year for us, we had many blessings and I am excited for what 2014 will bring!
I took this picture of my children, Patriot and Samantha, for our Christmas cards, and it made me realize just how much they have grown this past year!

Last spring we had their portraits taken with a friend of mine who is a photographer,  Courtney Dickerson  she does beautiful work and is a great lady! If you live in the St. Louis area, be sure to check her out.

Seeing those pictures makes me look forward to warm spring!

I was able to accomplish some of my goals in 2013. One was finishing our dining room makeover. Although the flooring and table top will be changing this coming year. I am excited for that.

We also did a low budget makeover of the laundry room when we replaced our old washing machine.

In the summer, we added a new furry family member. Mr daughter still adores her little Prince. She is a great mommy.

In the fall, we finally got rid of our icky carpet and installed new flooring. I will be making a post on this once all baseboards have finally been installed. For those who have asked, we chose Allen & Roth Handscraped Driftwood Oak laminate flooring from Lowes. I have to say I have been very happy with it so far. The different tones allows the flooring to go with any shade of wood furniture you may have in a room. It also hides dirt and dog hair very well, I have to look hard to see where I need to clean. I'm not going to complain about that though!

In the fall I also helped my sister throw a Lash Bash for Ipsy and Benefit Cosmetics and we ended up winning the grand prize! A trip to San Francisco to visit the Benefit Cosmetics home office, we go next month, still waiting for someone to pinch me.....

We didn't do much traveling in 2013, I look forward to some fun adventures in 2014.

Last week, after patiently hunting for the past couple years, I finally found the right bed at the most amazingly right price! I have had great success with craigslist and furniture. I plan on using this bed in our master bedroom makeover. It is pretty scratched up and will be receiving a Annie Sloan Chalk Paint makeover.

We are finally painting the kids bath and starting it's long overdue makeover this coming weekend. I can't wait to see it come together!

I have some personal goals for this year, one is to be more in the moment and enjoy the little things in life more.

To step outside of my comfort zone.

To worry less and trust God more.

To take better care of myself and make healthier choices.


To stay positive and expect great things!

I hope you have had a Happy New Year and are expecting great things also! I truly believe a positive spirit brings positive things! Happy New Year!


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Christmas Home Tour

Merry Christmas! Can you believe it is only 14 days until Christmas? That makes me excited,and a little sad, only because I love this time of year so much, I want it to last a little longer! It seemed to fly by this year, I am going to make the most of these next 14 days though, which includes baking, shopping, and two Christmas shows. I am excited to take my daughter to the Nutcracker this year! Anyway, on to our home tour, come on in! I did an all neutral Christmas last year, and while I LOVED it, my children did not. I was informed that it just isn't Christmas without red. So I promised to give them some pops of red this year, and I am really loving the festive red touches! That is the great thing about a neutral palette, it is easy to add different colors when you want. So welcome to our cheery red Christmas!

Meet Albus, I decided to make him the centerpiece of our mantle this year.

I had a hard time finding the right red satin ribbon this year, I thought I would share a place I discovered that has beautiful ribbon, and a very sweet lady named Carole that sells it, The Ribbon Store  If you are looking for beautiful ribbon, her ebay store is a great resource.

I decided to mix gold bottle brush and mercury trees to create a forest scene for the moss covered reindeer. The old frames created the perfect backdrop.

One of my projects was taking an old broken mirror that came with the old dresser I have in my living room, and turning into a chalkboard. This mirror had been sitting in my garage for the past couple of years. Can you believe that? I don't know what I was thinking! I love how it turned out as a chalkboard, and look forward to finding new uses for it after Christmas.

Just a note about this picture, I did not place our little 6 month old, papillion/chihuahua puppy, Prince on the bench to be included in this shot. I was taking pictures when I felt something staring and me, I looked down, and there he was, perfectly placed, just sitting there. He wanted to be in this picture. He is obviously very used to the camera. Ha! I clicked away while he just sat there. He is a great little guy. I still can't get over how he did that, he never sits on this bench.

I had big plans for this chalkboard, BIG, but my daughter Samantha had plans too, and you know what? I LOVE what she drew on this chalkboard. She did a beautiful job, a scene inside a Christmas cottage including a tufted sofa with snow falling outside the window. My kinda girl!

And here he is again, this dog knows what he is doing!

Just keeping it real. What our sofa normally looks like.

I think probably one of my most favorite things this year, is this pillow I purchased from The White Rabbit Store in St. Louis. The little bit of bling on the deer sparkles at night from the tree lights, it is so pretty! You can visit The White Rabbit HERE 

Thanks for stopping by my Christmas Tour! Merry Christmas!



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Liz Marie