Decluttering, Favorite Spaces/Places, My Clutter Journal/Journey, Organizing

My New Dining Room!


So, it started like this…

Yeah, it's quite the mess! I use this room a lot for looking through stuff and deciding what to do with it. Remember the big paper purge?

Anyway, so Stefanie and I are starting at our doors and working our way around our houses, starting at the front door, possibly skipping our kitchens until everything else is decluttered (we haven't actually decided yet), and creating a place for everything. It's major purge time. I'm hoping to get rid of TONS of stuff and have a garage sale.

I usually don't wait for a garage sale.

Soooooo…this room is going to once again be messy with all the stuff I'm holding aside for the sale. But, at least I know that it'll all be gone and back to serenity by the end of Summer. If I don't have a garage sale by then, I'm donating everything I've bagged and tagged!

Back to the nice, new dining room.

Cleared the space to the right of the door.

And put the palm there. On the other side of the window, I put my antique serving cart. I've been saving it to use for a long time.

And Josh made me this clothes pin board. That took care of some things that I loved but they were adding to the clutter in my home. The chunky frame-LOVE-but didn't have a place for, the scraps of material from our breakfast room chair re-covering, the antique clothes pins that we had been hanging onto, and all those Christmas family photos I never know what to do with.



Then, I cleared out the hutch of all the excess glassware. It was a mess! I found out Stefanie has a real eye for detailed arrangement! And she told me she is clueless when it comes to decorating–NOT. These shelves were re-arranged with her ideas and it ended up looking beautiful!

It was her idea to have all the milk glass on one shelf and to arrange the pitchers as collections with their matching glasses. Why didn't I think of that?

I'm not quite sure I want to keep the picture in there, now that I see it in the picture. It just doesn't go with the glass collection. What do y'all think?


In the opposite corner, to the right of the hutch, I found the perfect place for my little school desk and the old painting of Pasadena, Texas. I've heard the matching one is in the Pasadena museum. I don't know if that's true but I love it all the same. Mrs. Myrtle painted a tremendous amount and I own several in her collection that were left with the old house. I feel so blessed that they let me keep the ones family didn't select when they sold the house. I've based a lot of my decorating around them because I love them so much!

This particular one was left in the garage and I cleaned some coffee splatters off of it. Someday it will have a frame like the others. But for now, at least it has a nice place to live.


And the sewing table had to be moved to make room for THIS…

I'm SSOOOOOOO excited to finally have a piano! It was Josh's Mamaw's old piano. EEEEeeeeeeek!

So, I put the sewing table in the dining room, and I think it fits nicely.


That little gold-leaf tree was my grandma's. It was the one thing I asked for when she died. It brings back so many memories of her. I used to think it was the most beautiful decoration and would touch the leaves while I talked with Grandma. I need a picture of her and Papa there. That would be nice.

And for the curious, the big antique suitcase holds Bubzy's wood train and tracks that he plays with nearly every day.

What do you think?



At Home

New Living Room Rug

I'm so excited about our new loving room rug!! We found it on Amazon for $250!! We absolutely love it in here now that the kids feel comfortable on the floor. The other rug wasn't meant for the living room but I had it here for now because that was better than nothing…at least for our feet and bottoms.


Here's how it looks now.

And this is what it looked like when we moved in with the smaller rug.

Living Room before rug2


When we put it on the floor the kids had a hay day! It's so soft and plush already and Josh also bought a padding to line it with for extra comfort.

our new rugI went to my favorite blog on decorating how-to's, Kylie M. Interiors, before deciding which one I wanted. She has the best ideas and she's so funny! If you're planning to buy a rug in the near future, you should totally check out her advice.


But…I didn't get after pics right away and this is what happened.

So I took some time yesterday to spiff if up and vacuum so that I could take after pictures.

Here's what my living room looks like kid free in those rare moments, like Ladies Night Outs, when only adults are lounging in here.

But that's not how we live because we have four children of our own and two more who love to come play with them. That's our life and we wouldn't have it any other way. So with 6 kids around us most days, it takes about 5 minutes for the stuff to trail back in.





And the big boys haven't even touched it yet!

I really feel blessed…and a bit tired. But isn't this what living's all about? I believe so!



At Home, Organizing

My Tiny Toddler Retreat Tour

I just adore how Bubzy’s little bedroom turned out!  Would you like a little picture tour?

Bubzy would love to show you. He was so excited to show Grandma Davis when she came to visit this weekend. He had loads of fun with Grandma and we can’t wait for her to come again and stay longer.


This is what Bubzy’s room looks like from our bed. Sometimes Bubzy and I play peek-e-boo and say “hi” back and forth. This room (made to be the lady’s master closet) is about 10 feet away, straight across. It’s a little over 6×9 ft, has a vent and bright fluorescent lighting. Bubzy knows how to open the door by himself and he can reach the light switch when he stands on the corner of the bed.

When we bought this house, I saw the potential in this space right away! We have a really good size home–close to 3000sq ft–but it’s only 3 bedrooms. We had already picked out and bought our home before we found out we’d have a new baby. Our children usually stay in our room for years, but two babies at one time–four people–in the same bedroom was making my head spin. I still wanted Bubzy close, so the biggest closet, right in sight, seemed the perfect solution.

We tried it out as a playroom when we first moved in to see if he would take to it. Boy, he did! He would drag me in there with him, demand that his big brother get out of “my woom”, and would go in there all on his own for long periods of time. When it got quiet in the house, I’d find him back there playing with his Legos or farm set. He loved it!

I started considering when to move forward with putting his bed in there, and one day I got an unexpected answer. One night I put him in his bed (right by ours at the time), and he pulled his pillow and blankly in there and told us he was sleeping in his room.

It was time to move forward, so we pulled everything out (Bubzy was so upset), painted it and moved it all back in, this time with the bed.

Although I wanted to keep it functionally a closet, for his and the baby’s clothes (and so I can revert it back when he’s ready to move into Abram’s room), I didn’t want it to feel like one! Painting it a fun color was the main way I wanted to take away that closet feel.

Here’s some other ways I did this:

Painting in sky blue I thought would extend the walls visually by mimicking the sky.

Another visual trick was the mirror. I just loved that this one looked like a window, making the room seem normal. It reflects the already bright light, making it almost sunny. Bubzy loves looking at himself in the mirror, and when he does, the room seems twice as long.


I used this hanging shelf to store his and Timmy’s blankets and put a small side table in the corner for usable storage that didn’t take up much space. I left the side table empty so that he could decide what to put in there. The next day there were a few toy dinosaurs.



I chose bedding and a rug from IKEA in an outdoor theme. I just think anything that brings the outdoors in creates an expansive feel. It’s like his own little campsite!

I even put his favorite toys in our old picnic basket (back in that corner near the chair). Most of his toys were sent upstairs to our playroom so that it wouldn’t be too cluttered in here.




The rug adds so much to his room–I just love it! Not only does it add interest, but makes a great background for playing with toy animals and boats.



Bubzy loves picking out his own PJs, so I slid his make-shift drawer right under his bed.



It ended up being the perfect bedtime changing station, with everything I need to ready him for bed all in easy reach. I can sit on the floor, pull out what I need, change him on his bed (perfect height while I’m sitting), and get all ready for a story!


Then, Bubzy tosses his dirty clothes in his own easy to reach hamper.



He even has a place for his socks and shoes so he can easily reach them when we want to play outside.


Before Bubzy gets tucked in at night he likes to play quietly for a little while while I nurse the baby and relax with my iPad before he takes it over to watch Barney.




And, there’s even room for Sissy and Bubba to come in here with me and play for awhile.




And right before I tuck Bubzy in, he likes to pick out a book from his shelves.

And curl up in this chair with me for a few stories.


Isn’t it adorable?


And the best part is that Mama and Bubzy did it together!

He was so excited to show his Grandma, and she was proud of him, too.


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At Home

Breakfast Area Organization


Breakfast Counter 4

This is my breakfast counter and I’m in love with this space. It’s not always perfect, but it’s perfect for us.

Every single morning it gets lots of use. I start my coffee, toast a couple of pieces of raison bread for Bubzy and myself, add some cream cheese, and wha-la…breakfast. Bubzy loves his bananas and always has one of those, too, with juice please. Then, when the older kids wake up, they pour their cereal–one thing I haven’t moved to this space yet since the containers are too big–and might even fix themselves some Chai Tea (stored in one of those antique metal boxes). It also works as a lunch prep area if all we’re fixing is sandwiches, but we call it our Breakfast Counter. We have bowls, cups, paper plates, plastic ware, coffee pot and fixins, a toaster, bananas, and other breakfast needs all within easy reach. It’s great for a groggy morning when you really don’t want to go searching for stuff. And it’s located right by the fridge for easy access to the milk and juice.

Breakfast Counter 5


Breakfast Counter 2

These containers have become favorites in our family. The canisters hold various things at different times. If we have Pop Tarts (rarely) they would be stored in “sugar”, quick fix packets of oatmeal or grits are stored in “flour”, although I may start putting our raison bread in there since it’s a more frequently used item, and Chai Tea is always in the “tea”. The coffee one is empty for now. Any thoughts?

And this rectangular basket perfectly pulls together those not-so-pretty things that we use so often they should be out in the open for us to access. I love that it’s rectangular to make it look squared away and tidy. I used antique mason jars from my grandmother to corral our plastic ware and permanent marker for putting our names on the plastic cups. That hasn’t quite become a habit yet. I put a smaller basket inside the bigger one to keep the paper plates backed up and tidy and the vase usually holds straws, but we’re out of them right now.

Breakfast Counter 1

I try my best when I’m organizing stuff to make things accessable and logical. Sometimes I have to think outside the box because not everything can be. Like the silverware drawer isn’t right by the dishwasher, but we can easily carry the whole group of washed ware to the spot at once, so it’s not that much more work. However, even though I keep most food items in the pantry, there are some exceptions when it comes to daily use stuff. Coffee, sugar, Agave, tea, and small breakfast items are all right here next to the coffee pot. I don’t have to walk across the kitchen for anything unless I chose to cook breakfast (1 morning out of 7, usually…so worth it). The kid’s plastic bowls and plates are down low because it’s much easier for them to bend down and much easier for the little’s to reach.

When I organize something, I think in task and imagine myself actually working through it. How many times do I have to leave the area? How can I reduce that? Just because someone says to put the silverware right by the dishwasher, doesn’t mean it’s the best way for your family. One person carries silver ware once a day across the kitchen. But 5 people stand in front of the breakfast counter and can reach bowl, spoon, milk, toaster, banana, cream cheese, tea or coffee, sugar to go in it, knife to spread with, coffee cup, cream out of the fridge, and on it goes, without ever walking away.

The only thing I still have to do is buy shorter cereal containers to fit in those cabinets. Ah well, there’s always something left unfinished around here. And don’t look in that fridge…it hasn’t been thoroughly cleaned out since before Thanksgiving.

So…do y’all have a breakfast niche? Or how do you organize your breakfast stuff? I would LOVE to hear any ideas or thoughts you have, and if you have pictures, give us a link in the comments so we can find them!

Breakfast Counter 3

Thanks, Tabitha

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At Home, Organizing

Master Closet Turned Toddler Playroom

You should see the closets in this house…Ahhhhhh!

I mean they are so dreamy! They’re huge with built in shelves and ventilation and bright fluorescent lights. Amazing!! When I saw the closets in this house, I thought two things; why in the world did they not post these pics of closet space on Realtor? and I am SO GLAD they didn’t put these amazing closet space pics on-line! I think this house would have sold like lightning if it would’ve been obvious. I know we snatched it right up! We’re bargain hunters and we didn’t even try that hard. (We at least got ’em down a little, but not like Dave Ramsey-would-be-proud kind of bargain.)

So, when I walked into the master bedroom after deciding this was for us, an idea started developing.

Look at the size of this closet: It’s about 9×7


Okay…I know, I know…I’ve seen bigger, too. But when you’re used to a closet this size:



(The left side was Josh’s and the right side with the little hanging shelves was mine. I mean, every piece of clothing I had that didn’t fit in a dresser was right there: all seasons, maternity, scarves…everything.) 

Why in the world would I need a closet as big as what I got?

So, Josh and I decided to share the men’s closet and use the big one for Bubzy’s own little play space/room. 

At first we tried putting Bubzy’s new little toddler bed in there and making it a tiny bedroom. I started putting the bed together…and Abby turned into Ms. Fix-it and took right over. She LOVED building her own little project and I think she did the whole thing almost by herself.


We put a little rug and bean bag chair in the corner and it turned out so cute! Problem was…Bubzy didn’t want to give up sleeping in Mom and Dad’s bed, and even 7 steps away was too far. He loved it during the day, though and started calling it “Mine”. He would go and sit on the bed, swing on the bar he could reach, and pull out toys to play with. We moved the bed right beside ours and we’re still in the transition faze of getting him out of our bed, but it’s at least possible now. We hope to move it back to this when he’s a year older and sleeping on his own regularly.  

So, it pretty much stayed this way, minus the bed, until a week into school. We couldn’t keep up with folding the laundry…so we washed, dried, and threw most of it in a basket. We kept stashing them behind the couch and folding little bits as we could. Well…I hosted a Ladies Night Out, and decided to throw all the clean clothes in Bubzy’s space. Then we got a huge bag of hand-me-downs for Bubzy that also got dropped in there. That was last Thursday. Then, on Sunday we decided to tear through it to find clean socks and an outfit that would fit Bubzy.  

It looked like this in no time flat! Ahhhhhhh!

 We weren’t going to leave it that way long…Bubzy kept going in there looking for his Legos and saying “Mine”. I hated to shoo him out of his own little space, but I mean…look at it! (At least they were all CLEAN clothes, right?)

This weekend, we decided to make a project out of it, organizing his new hand-me-downs, looking through the clothes he had out to see what needed to be put away, folding all those neglected clean clothes…wrinkled and all, and make it into Bubzy’s own little playroom. We had no idea it would turn into a half day project!


Josh was a huge help as he took load after load of clean clothes to the bed to fold…plus other stuff like, “Hey Babe, can you put this way up there for me?”!


That much! Oh, no, that was a whittled down pile. Thanks Hun! 

As the clean clothes disappeared from the floor and the fabulous new pile of Bubzy sized clothes were sorted, the floor started to look normal again. It just needed some toy sorting with help from Bubzy and a good vacuuming.



Now for the RESULTS:



He loves playing in his little room! It’s been a week since he’s been allowed to play IN here instead of just letting him pick a toy before heading back to the living room. I’m sure he’s glad to have it back.

This picture actually captured how bright it is in here! 

The camera usually yellows the appearance of the walls, but it’s not this dark at all. 

Now I don’t mind him playing in here again.  

So…what do y’all think, gals?? We LOVE it!! I can’t wait to paint it a fun color. -Tabitha


At Home

Welcome to Our New Home

I really love our new neighborhood. I’ve always dreamed of living in a place like this. Not that I wouldn’t mind a huge piece of land in the mountains or a deserted island–but this is the kind of dreamy that meets with our reality. Here it is!

I just LOVE all the trees in this neighborhood. I was a little worried about that when we decided to buy a whole lot newer house. This house was built in 2006. We’re on a corner lot, which was one of my biggest wish list items, along with it being on a culdesac, which it also is. Seriously gals, I really thought this would only remain a dream until the day we moved in. I’m in love!




Come on in and plop your shoes by the front door. This view was what drew us in in the first place. As soon as I saw the art niches all lined up neatly across from the stairs in a big ‘ol wide hall, I knew I had to look. Let me tell ya, though. I had no idea how incredibly roomy in felt! We walked in the first time and just gasped. It was like, ROOM. Lots and lots of airy space. I can breath in here.



 To the left of the front door is our office, which I’m going to turn into a library. Don’t know when exactly, but I’ve got about a bazillion books waiting to be unpacked in there.


Don’t you just love the neat curve at the bottom of the stairs? This house is a 1 1/2 story. All the bedrooms are down. The only rooms up are a big game room, which we’re turning into the kid’s playroom, a media room, and a small half bath. Perfect! All the mess stays upstairs. Told you it was dreamy.


Opposite the office, to the right of the front door, is our dining room. It’s got a nice view out to our front yard at the end of the culdesac.



Okay, so I’m a wee bit excited about my kitchen. Gas stove top–check. 42″ cherry cabinets–check. Island kitchen–check. Laundry room right off the kitchen–check. Built in kitchen desk–squeal!! Pantry–check. Can it get any better than this?


 Breakfast room right off the kitchen.


Ah! A perfect living room to relax in. Gotta love all that light coming in the windows.

 And a fireplace–another squeal!


There’s a little alcove that sits behind the living room and leads to the kid’s rooms and bathroom.


I really like the kid’s alcove. Gotta think of a cute way to decorate it. The bathroom’s in the middle, Abram’s room to the left, and Abby’s to the right, a little out of this picture.

And, this one’s just to show you how the main living area is laid out.



So, what do y’all think?? Isn’t it just perfect?


I can’t wait to blog my way through this house! It’s just so nice. I can’t wait to show you the kid’s rooms and playroom and the backyard. Oh, there’s so much to show…but it’ll just have to come in little spurts. We’re also gearing up for school right now, so time’s a little tight.


It’s great to be back!


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At Home

We’ve Moved IN!!!

Oh my, folks. This was the longest, hardest, weirdest move we have ever made!

But…we’re finally moved in. FINALLY.

We found the house of our dreams, but the sellers weren’t ready to move until the kids were out of school for the year. Since our house had already sold, we had to MOVE TWICE. Talk about the ultimate in difficult moves, moving twice in 6 weeks.

For the duration of the 6 weeks, we moved the bare essentials to my parents old house that they were trying to sell and staged it while we were there. We haven’t got the final word yet, but they had two interested parties and might have a sell–we hope.

After all of that, we decided to hire movers the second time around. Still not convinced that was the best thing we could’ve done. They moved all the furniture and packed boxes, but left a ton of bins and odds and ends behind. It still took us a day of moving after the movers were finished. Oh well. At least Josh didn’t have to break his back moving twice. The heavy stuff was done.

So, I know you’re really just waiting for the pictures, right?

Welcome to our new home!


Dreamy corner lot on a culdesac, with trees galore.


And a swing-set that stayed!


It’s so exciting when you see the moving truck pull in front of your new house!


Just put those there…and there, and there, and there, I guess.


Toys go upstairs, Daddy. Can I help?


Hmm…what goes in here?