Storybook Baby Shower

My cousin just had her little boy last week.  We threw her a Storybook themed shower a few weeks ago.  She has always been an avid reader so this theme was perfect.  We used children’s books, baby blocks, and primary colors heavily as the decor.

For our spread of food, I started with a blue chevron tablecloth and used cake plates, bowls and platters to get the food on different levels for better visual interest.  I found the inspiration for the food tent labels here – the ones she did not have pre-made, she shares how to make your own.  I made the hanging stars out of pages I cut from a copy of If You Give a Pig a Pancake using this tutorial.

Food Table CookiesIf You Give a Mouse a Cookie (Oreo Pudding Cookies)
Fruit PlateThe Very Hungry Caterpillar (Fruit Plate)
Ham SandwichesGreen Eggs and Ham (Ham and Swiss Sliders)
MuffinsIf You Give a Moose a Muffin (Krusteaz Pumpkin Spice Mix)
Pigs in a BlanketThe Three Little Pigs (Pigs in a Blanket)

Hanging Decor

For the drink table, I attached paper honeycomb balls to the wall.  This was much easier than trying to hang them from strings at the correct heights but still just as cute to me.  I set some children’s books on the bottom shelf of the sideboard.

Drink Table Punch

Fuzzy Yellow Ducklings (Lemonade Punch)

Story Books

My mom cut flowers from her yard for us to use at the party, and I filled a big bowl with wooden baby blocks for a table centerpiece.


Above the gift table I strung together circles I had cut from children’s books and colorful paper.  I made a couple of paper fan wheels from pages of a Mickey Mouse storybook as well.  I made the diaper cake by fanning the diapers in a circle rather than rolling and banding them (Tutorial HERE).  The center layer is board books I picked up at the Dollar Tree. The mini flashcards strung around the bottom layer are from this etsy seller.   I found the cute Hungry Caterpillar rattle at Tuesday Morning.

Gift TableDiaper Cake

This was a really fun shower to throw.  Thanks to my mom for providing our location and flowers and thanks to my other cousins for providing food and serveware!

The Pocket

My mom took me to a Wildlife Management area last week called The Pocket at Pigeon Mountain.  It has an incredible amount of native wildflowers.  The first half of the Pocket has a flat boardwalk weaving through the foliage.  There are flowers as far as the eye can see up the mountain side.  The second half of the Pocket is an easy hike up to a waterfall.

It is impossible to do justice to this beautiful scene by description or even by picture.  The layers and texture of the terrain can only be fully appreciated in person.  Never-the-less, I took some pictures and thought I would share.

The PocketFlowers as far as you can see up the mountainside.

Pocket Bent White TrilliumTrillium flexipedes
(hard to tell from the photo, but these were the size of large dinner plates)

Pocket Dutchmans BeechesMoss-covered rocks with Bishop’s Cap

There were so many beautiful rocks along the trail, that now I am longing for something similar in my own yard.

Pocket Jack in the PulpitJack-in-the-pulpit

Pocket Purple PhaceliaPurple Phacelia and Christmas ferns

Pocket SilverbellCarolina Silverbell

My mom put one of these just outside our fence so that it can dangle these beautiful dainty blooms over the back yard.

Pocket TiarellaTiarella

I have one of these, also called foam flower, in my yard now thanks to my mom.

Pocket Trailing TrilliumTrailing Trillium

Pocket Woodland StonecropWoodland Stonecrop

Pocket ColumbineEastern Columbine and Purple Phacelia

Pocket WaterfallThe waterfall at the end of the trail

Other wildflowers that were blooming while we were there, but that I did not get good pictures of were blue phlox, wood poppies, blue cohosh,White Baneberry (Doll’s Eyes), False Soloman’s Seal, and Virginia Bluebells.  I found this site helpful when looking up the Pocket and the flowers that are there.  The drive from our house is about two hours, but I’m already desiring to visit again soon.

What I’m Loving

There are a few years, and a laundry room renovation (creation actually), between now and when we plan renovate our bathroom.  Nevertheless, I’ve been playing around with rough layouts and collecting material inspirations.  I’m dreaming of a very traditional style, including white subway and hex tiles, white custom inset cabinetry, and polished nickel fixtures.  My collected inspiration is on this pinterest board.

What I'm Loving 5
1 | 2 | 3 | 4


I love these simple Bryant sconces.  I would have two flanking each sink area.  The vanity area in this bathroom renovation is my inspiration.  

I think this hidden outlet is a fantastic solution for keeping a hair dryer out of sight when it isn’t in use.  

One of our favorite purchases has been a heated towel warmer.  Right now we have one that stands on the floor just outside our bathroom, but I would love to use one of these wall-mounted versions when we do a full renovation.  

I love the Moen Waterhill collection, and have the hand towel ring in a couple of our bathrooms already.  I have this pivoting paper holder in the bathroom on the main level, and I love it – the style, the weight of it, and the ease of changing the roll of paper.  

Polished nickel has become my favorite finish for fixtures, whether plumbing, lighting, or hardware.  It is so classic and rich-looking – much more so than brushed nickel.  And it is warmer than a chrome finish.  I plan to use it wherever I can in future renovations and upgrades.

Red Office Accents

After compiling a small collage of red office accents that would look really cute on my desk at work, but some of which was pricier than I would ever spring for, I came across a great little knock-off version of the accordion file collator.  Target’s Room Essentials brand is carrying one very similar but in a dull gray color for only $10.99.

I think it is only half the size of the collator from Anthropologie that was my inspiration, but that doesn’t bother me.  I took it home and coated it with a few layers of red spray paint.  Now it is in my office at work with the other red accessories I’ve collected over time.

Collator before

Red Collator

red desk accessories

New Year’s Eve Party

We held our annual New Year’s Eve party last week and I was able to try out my decorations in our new house.  I also added a few new things this year.  The best new addition was a wreath for the front door.  I bought the silver ball and tinsel wreath after Christmas at Target, then added some NYE flair using a glue gun.  I had to remove a few of the silver ball ornaments from the wreath in order to fit the extra decorations in well.  I added two party horns covered with gold and silver glitter and a silver tiara.  The gold starburst was an ornament I picked up at World Market after Christmas.  I also added an extra strip of tinsel to the outer and inner edges of the wreath for a bit more substance.

New Year's Eve Wreath

In the foyer, I put a crystal clock and two champagne flutes under a glass cloche.  I changed the DIY tinsel-covered numbers to read 2015 on the wall behind the table.  Lastly, I wrapped some gold and silver garlands that I picked up from Walmart after Christmas around the stair banister.

New Year's Eve Foyer Decorations

In the living room, I set up the party hats and noisemakers for ringing in the new year at midnight.  I hung a silver mylar “chandelier” above the coffee table.


NYE Chandelier

On the coffee table, I put out little baggies of “Midnight Kisses.”  For dinner we had chili and chicken-corn chowder, cornbread, and buffalo chicken dip.  At midnight, we toasted with champagne with rock candy garnish.

Midnight Kisses

In the den, I added a party hat to the bulldog jar given to me by a good friend this year.  Even Buddy put up with us putting a little hat on him for long enough to snap a picture.

NYE Bulldog

NYE Buddy