Sometimes I Wonder…

Hi friends! We have been home owners now for almost four years. I remember when we bought our home, I proclaimed it would be a two year project. Boy was I wrong. Granted, the $40,000 paintjob + wood repair was very unexpected, as was the broken hot water heater, plumbing repair, and a slew of other natural and unnatural disasters. You would think after four years of being home owners and DIY home owners at that, that we may have learned a thing or two. Sometimes I wonder, how good have we gotten at this homeowner thing. When Home Advisor asked us to find out our grade on their home maintenance report card (a quick 10 questions online quiz), we were game to find out.

Here is how we answered the questions…




How do you think we did? If you want to take the quiz for yourself (no cheating!), it takes about 120 seconds over here. Let us know what score you got. We will give you a clue as to our grade – they called us teacher’s pet, but I think we could have done better! After seeing some shocking facts, we immediately wanted to know the cost, and have added some of the maintenance to our list to help future Joey and Lana save a little cash. We’ll be back with the results!

6 Tips to Keep the Kiddie Closet Organized

This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group™ and Home Depot & Rubbermaid, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #AllAccessOrganizers

We were just on vacation and flew with Atlas for the first time and we are happy to report that all was successful so thank you for all your helpful advice on FaceBook and Twitter. We were only gone for a week, but believe it or not, Atlas grew out of multiple items of clothing in that short time. It seems I’m cleaning out his drawers and closets on a weekly basis because my monster child is growing twice as fast as any other baby his age it seems. He just turned 6 months and we are already on to 18 month clothing. I needed a better solution for organizing his clothes, so I was very excited when Home Depot and Rubbermaid asked us to try out their new “All Access Organizers”. Basically I was stacking boxes on top of each other and dividing the old clothes into donate, giveaway, and keep piles. The boxes only open on top and I kept forgetting what was inside. This took a lot of time.



In just a couple hours I created a whole new system that takes up a lot less space and saves me those precious minutes each week. Welcome the genius, open in front, see-through in front, stackable solution. I was able to do such a thorough job that the two bins i thought I would need for clothing turned into one bin for Christmas gifts and one bin for future clothing.


Though these bins open on top I chose to easily stack them on top of each other and use the see-through window in a way that I can view all the clothing at one in one bin. In the other bin, I put smaller toys and treats towards the front opening so I could snag something special fro Atlas before Christmas because I tend to want to treat him more often than not. Basically if you have an hour or two – do it. Gram some good organizers and make a simple system – and you will save so much time and your future self will be happy!



Here are some tips to organize your growing child’s closet.

  1.  Get some baby/kid hangers and divide into like groups (we divided onesies, pants, t-shirts/sweaters, and PJs
  2. Buy All Access bins and stack below clothing and keep plenty of onesies, pant’s and pajamas on hand for those times they seems to grow overnight.
  3. Many people have been successful using dividers with sizing on them, we may give that a shot soon.
  4. Laying out all their shoes on a self instead of the floor is an easy and quick way to keep them organized and clean.
  5. Make sure to have good lighting in your kid’s closet so you can keep it clean easier. If it’s not hard wired, “touch lights” are easy to find and won’t break the bank.
  6. Keeping a mini iron an ironing board will encourage you to iron out any wrinkly pieces of clothing.

Rubbermaid FB Page       Home Depot FB Page



Ugly potter gone tape!

I love a simple trick that is quick and cheap. How’s this for a temporary (or semi-perminate) solution to those icky pots plants come in? It’s so stinkin’ easy you are going to flip. Grab some fancy duck tape (it comes in a million colors now), and simply wrap your plant container up until you are ready to repot. I tent to kill my little green friends, so I thought up this idea so I wouldn’t cringe at the idea of them in their black plastic gross pot. It’s simple potted plant + duck tape equals a happy rental unit for my new fiddle leaf I scored for $13 at Ikea. If you take that + the $5 for the duck tape, you may call this a pretty sweet score.

fiddle leaf fig ikea, tapped potter


gold duck tape

Top 4 Apps for Instagram + Other Fun Stuff

Happy Monday! We hope you had a fantastic weekend! I seem to have come down with the flu and Joey has been super dad to Atlas as I try and recover from the insanity of being sick. It stinks to feel like crap-o when the weather is so nice too! Despite being under the weather, we still headed to Peddler’s Village for the annual Strawberry Festival and it was a lot of fun! We took a lot of photos and that inspired todays post. We are kind of addicted to Phoster, Afterlight, PicFX and Pic Collage right now, so let’s talk our top photo apps!

Before we get into the details of  photo apps, we wanted to share a place we rely on and may be addicted to. Being full fledged insta-addicts (be our friends!) we have a fondness of making those pictures take physical form so we can see them beyond a chin-down posture while phone viewing and up on our walls and tables. We made a few posts, here and here about what we do with our pics you can check out if you missed. This place we are excited we found is a place that prints 5X5 square prints (!!) and feeds right from instagram! Picplum has made it WAY WAY WAY too easy to go a little nuts with photos. They haven’t paid us or given us samples (nor has anyone in this post), we just like them a lot and it’s a really easy way to share pictures with family and get  those square prints.

We even have a list of people saved in our account so we can send them over pictures of Atlas. I am actually surprised how many people call asking for pictures!

Now, some fun stuff we use on our phones! I recently started getting a little more confident with playing around with photo apps and am so excited there are people out there that have made great apps for people like me who have such a hard time with photoshop. Joey seems to just intuitively know what to do, where I am always like “doh!”.

Phoster is pretty simple to use. It’s sometimes difficult to to move the words around, but all in all it’s a pretty great app for $1.99.

phoster review, phoster, phoster example

Here are some examples of how we have used it to promote our instagram vintage sale (may 15th! 7pm! follow for deets!)

phoster example, phoster review, phoster

I dig it, and will use it until instagram becomes over-saturated with it. I also like to layer other apps with it, like in the second image.

Afterlight is $.99 and worth it just for the heart, circle, and letter cut out. I try not to over do it because you see it everywhere, but I do play with it personally, even if I don’t share it on instagram too much.

afterlight review, afterlight example, afterlight app

afterlight review, afterlight example

PicFX is $1.99 and may not be worth it if you aren’t into effects and textures. I am cheesy so I am obsessed with the galaxy effect and I dig the orbs as well (pic of Atlas above, and crab pic are two examples + a layer of phoster + a layer of  Afterlight on the Atlas pic).

picfx review, picfx example

Last, but not least is Pic Collage. It’s free, which is awesome and  has a bunch of features we skip over. Basically we like it for the “cut out” feature it has.

pic collage review, pic collage examples

You can cut out images and collage them instead of just placing photos in a pre-templated collage.

pic collage example, pic collage review

You can see the owl is “cut out”. You use your finger, or I suppose you can use a stylus if you have one.

So, those are our top picks for photo apps. Do you use any great ones you are willing to share? We are always excited to try a new one.

Don’t forget to be our instafriend! We certainly want to be yours! xxoo




Putting the Pressure On

If you had a chance to check out our post about pressure treated wood, and how to prep it for growing edibles and protect yourself while working with it – you know a lot more than we did when we looked into it! To really drive the safety aspect home, we made a little video to help answer the most common questions we have come across (and asked ourselves) and to share what safety tools we used in the process.


Content and/or other value provided by our partner, 3M DIY.

All safely materials were graciously supplied by 3M, and we are grateful they did because this project sure needed them! Though sponsored, all opinions are our own. 


Because I don’t know photoshop…

I decided to poke around the internet to find some tools to make my posts more interesting. I have always loved the way handwriting looks on photos, but feel silly using “handwritten” fonts that aren’t my own writing! I found a super easy program that is not only cheap, is super quick to use on both PC and Macs. It took about 10 minutes total from printing the sheet, to writing the fonts, scanning, and uploading! I will be the first to admit Joey and I are both not pro’s at photoshop. I just learned to make an animated .gif earlier this week and tested it out yesterday. Defiantly not a strong point of ours when it comes to blogging. We will spend 10 hours researching an oven, and skip the techy stuff!


I am so excited to see my silly handwriting as a font! I also subbed out some of the traditional QWERTY symbols for something more fun!

I don’t see myself or Joey using the font to actually write blog posts, but it is super fun to use oh photos, and I love the idea you can make whatever symbol you want for symbols you won’t really use! Also, you can do a cute signature!

*both products above from dwellstudio


5 Things I’ve Learned from Working With Emily Henderson, so far

Happy Monday! Did you get hit with the snow storm this weekend? It was a weird relief to finely get some seasonally appropriate action. It snowed here before Thanksgiving, then nothing! We didn’t mind it so much. So today I am doing a little post about what I have learned so far, from working with Miss Emily Henderson. Ya know, HGTV Design star Winner? Host of Secrets from a Stylist, your favorite HGTV show. Personally I think she’s the most relevant design on TV. She gets it. She knows how to make a room look like a million bucks, while looking lived in, while not breaking the bank. So what have I picked up in the 7 months I have been on board? 


1. Sometimes a turban and a Red Bull is all you need. This pic was taken after a Fashion Week Party. I learned something this past September while working with Emily. This girl wakes up early and stays up late in order to get things done, and she’s always doing it in style. I once heard “We as people are only good at either fashion or interiors, never both”. Emily is defiantly the exception to this rule. Cram as much as you can into a day, you’ll be surprised what you can get done. 

2. Options. When we get a new client, it’s all about sourcing options. I know it’s easy to think designers know exactly what the room will look like as soon as they set eyes on it. I kinda did, but in reality that doesn’t make any sense. I have learned that sourcing options is probably the most crucial thing you can do in the whole design process. You may know a perfect couch for the living room, but that couch can be 10K! Knowing how to source and having enough options something similar is way more important than I thought!

3. Ugly can be pretty. You know when you shop junk or vintage you pass by 99% of stuff and think “no way!”? Emily has defiantly taught me to look more deeply at objects. Shape, quality, scale. It can be transformed into something beautiful that works. Finding unique spots beyond the big box stores, and knowing how to find a gem has been so much fun!

4. You don’t have to be one thing. People often compartmentalize themselves into a specific style, and it’s OK to be attracted to two, three, or even four styles at the same time. We have a client that’s Lake House with Japanese flair, in an un kitchy way – and one would think that’s strange – but it’s looking insanely amazing. 


5. Mixing is vital. Yes, we buy stuff from West Elm, CB2, and Room and Board like the best of them, but the majoity of styling is done with way off the beaten track items. This is where Emily sets herself apart. She takes the extra step to find those unique items the clients totally connect with and is a master at grouping them.


Sometimes you don’t get it right on the first try. If you watched Design Star when Emily is on it, you remember this:

So don’t beat yourself up. Try, try again. It’s been a blast so far, and I am so excited to share finished projects. Emily and Orlando have been doing the majority of the designing (I don’t want any confusion!), but just being around them is so inspiring. 


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