Sorry I missed a post or two guys, between Madeline’s birthday and the too many margaritas I had yesterday for Cinco de Mayo (ha – I wish)…no actually, I’ve had a lot of contractions these past few days, my midwife thinks little girl is going to show up soon so I am trying to rest up as much as I can before the birth – and so that means staying off the screen. Hope you’ll forgive me
We’ve had some really gorgeous weather here in the Bay area, and it make me want to go all out with all of outdoor space – not something I could do when we live in NYC! While the garden is already all planted and cared for by our landlord, we have a little terrace upstairs that I am trying to turn into a little oasis – and as I am working on that I thought I’d share a few tips with you too so you can pimp your outdoor space too!
1. Create nooks and corners to fit your lifestyle: Do you like to entertain? Or just lounge around? Or maybe both depending on your mood? Think about how you want to use your garden, how you want to live in it, and figure out how to divide your outdoor space so that it fits your needs (as in images 2,3,5). Creating these different will help give your garden structure. Also, if you have kids, figure out ways that you can create a space for them to hang out – hello dream tree house? (image 7)
2. Bring shade: When I was little, we had the biggest beech tree in our yard and it was by far our favorite spot to hag out – we had a picnic table and I have so many memories of my family and I hanging in the shade, eating and drinking like French people know how far from the heat:) Of course having a huge tree in your backyard isn’t always possible, but there are tons of way to can add shade: with an umbrella, a canopy, a pergola, etc (images 3,4)…not only will it offer you protecting from the sun, but it will also help you give your backyard more dimension. If you build something like a pergola, you’ll be able to grow plants, and hang lights and decorations from it for parties- so nice!
3. Hang up lights! DO IT! And I mean, don’t wait for the next party. Hanging light (like in image 1) is the easiest way to give your outdoor space a magical feel – and it doesn’t cost much either! When we lived in NYC, we had a tiny balcony, we could only fit two chairs and a side table on it, but I added some string lights and instantly we started hanging out there more – the light brought such a cosy feeling to the space.
4. Bring the indoors outdoors: Don’t be afraid to decorate outside the way you would inside. Use outdoor pillows and rugs. If you’re up for it and live in the right climate, you can even create a outdoor fireplace or an entire outdoor kitchen – so perfect to entertain friends!
5. More is more. Yes, when it comes to plants, more is more! One plant is good, ten are way better – you’ll create this great “hide-out in the forest” kinda feel. Mix up trees with different leaves and height, keeping care and the way they will grow into mind so it remains fairly easy for you to take care of.
6. Insta-garden. If you are renting your place, or if you want to bring green to a terrace, you won’t be able to plant a tree, but you use potted plants and trees to create an insta garden (image 5). Upstairs we have a little terrace, I bought a few plants at Ikea and our local nursery, and it’s crazy the difference these potted trees make in creating a cosy feel in that space (I’ll share some pictures soon!)
7. Use colors and patterns to set the mood. Think about what mood you want to set and choose the colors you bring outside accordingly. For example, if you want your outdoor space to feel calm and relaxing, you’ll want to stay with neutral colors and blue hues. On the other hand, if your space is used for entertaining and partying a lot, consider warmer/brighter colors….you already know which way I lean Be bold and add a dash of color here and a splash of color there to take your outdoor space from dull to dazzling (images 1 and 6)! Some ways to add color: pots, garden chairs, outdoor cushions and rugs, umbrellas,
8. Create pathways in your backyard. Backyard paths work well to divide the space in a yard to create different functional spaces. If you build a winding pathway and plant accordingly around it, you will with time grow a backyard with an very organic, natural feel. The curves pull the eyes to different areas of the lawn, making it seem shorter and more intimate - the kind of space that says “Come visit me, I’ve got so many treasures for you to discover!“. On the other hand, straight pathway designs create sharp angles and lines for a clean look while making the lawn seem longer.
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Today the loveliest of little girls turns 3. My littlel May flower, born in the first hours of May. Three years today that the bright Spring sun rose in the Danish sky as I was holding her tight and kissing her red hair for the first time. Three incredible years getting to know her better.
Some people don’t like to find out the sex of the baby before the baby’s born because they say, in these days of over information, it’s the only thing that’s left a surprise. But really, to me, knowing the sex of your baby is one of the only thing you can know before they come to this world. What they look like, their personality…it slowly unfolds in front of you as they get older. And it’s really one of the best thing about being a parent…watching them be their own little selves.
I love you so much, my little Madeline. Happy birthday my darling girl!
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Don’t get too excited, I am not quite ready to reveal baby’s nursery yet (soon though!), but today I did want to share a little something that I made for the nursery – these “read baby read” clear bookshelves in the reading corner. We’ve been trying to think about many ways we can include the girls and have them around the baby once she’s here, and reading books together is definitely high on our list. Our list: some shelves, a rocking chair and a little stool for the girls to grab book whenever they want.
As I mentioned before, the nursery is in our bedroom and it’s pretty tight- so I needed something that didn’t take took much space physically (or even visually). I found these clear acrylic book shelves on Pinterest and loved them right away, but turns out they were expensive and only available in Australia. Instead I found mine here for $8.75 each – what a steal! Add a little contact paper to personalize the whole thing and done -in a matter of minute you’ve got yourself rad shelves for less than $30!
I had fun adding the”Read Baby Read” message, but you could do anything really, like write a sweet message with your baby’s name -we might do that later -, or even do a little pattern with contact paper – how cute would dots or tiny hearts look? I used black contact paper as it offered the best contrast with the books, but you could do it in any color really. The best thing is that you can change it up any time you feel like it – the contact paper will come right off without leaving any mark on your shelves! Read on to learn how to set these up.
PS: by the way, the pretty crochet bunting you see here was sent to me by my sweet sweet reader/blogger Victoria from A Moka a Day and I love it so much. Isn’t it adorable?!
What you need
- Clear acrylic shelves - $8.75 each!
- Contact paper (dark/chalk is best for contrast, but you could do any color you wish!)
- Transfer paper
- Printer to print Feather phone wallpaper.jpg
What you do
1. Print out
the read baby read print
2. On your transfer paper, trace the outline of the letters. PS: You only need to trace READ once, you should be able to use the transfer paper twice.
3. Turn the transfer paper over (outline you just traced facing down so the word is spelled out right to left) and color over with your pencil to transfer the outlines onto the back of the contact paper. If the outlines is too faint when done, go over it with your pencil so you can see where to cut
4. With scissors or sharp knife, cut out the letters carefully.
5. Peel and stick on the shelves. Et voila, you’re done! Easy, right?!
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Raise your hand if you’ve ever had prints that you needed to hang up on your walls, but they just ended up collecting dust in a closet because the thought (and cost!) of getting them custom framed gave you chills?
I was about to really give up on that dream gallery wall I wanted in our living room, when Framed and Matted offered I try out their new custom framing services – I thought….well, what the heck do I have to loose? So I got on their website, plugged in my art size, picked my frame/mat and BAM – it literally took three minutes later to get my order in…I was blown away. So. Simple. And the even better news? Their pretty frames are super affordable – between $75-$250 for the largest sizes. And they offer free shipping on all orders. I ordered all my frames in white + “white ice” mat (I’m a white freak, what do you want!) but they have tons mat and frame color options.
The quality is so gorgeous – want proof? About 1/2 hour after I received my frame I was on their website ordering for the rest of my wall gallery frames…and a week later for my nursery frames! So addictive, I am trying really hard to fight the urge to replace all the ill-fitting IKEA frames I have for my other prints. In any case, my gallery wall is up and I am so happy at how the frames make my prints look like a million bucks!
And guess what, you lucky readers you, Framed and Matted is giving you the chance to make your own walls look like a million bucks! They are giving away a$150 gift certificate to their shop so you can buy the frame(s) you need. Enter in the Rafflecopter widget below!
This giveaway is US residents only (sorry international friends!) and will be open until 05/06/14 at 11:59pm PST. The winner will be contacted via email within 48 hours after the end of the giveaway – so make sure to leave a valid email address when you enter! Good luck, friends
Prints featured in the wall gallery: ballon picture by me, Pineapple printby Ez Puweda, original painting by Betsy Walton, Lama collage print by John Murphy, Pink shoes and pine cone picture by me, Graphic 201 print by Mareike Böhmer Graphics, Foral doodle by Jo Chambers. Other prints: Ice cream photograph by Max Wanger. Painted Pebbles 1 print by Garima Dhawan.
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While the girls continue their never-ending obsession with anything from the Frozen movie (you guys, since they have blond hair and red hair, they pretend all day long that they ARE the real Elsa and Anna – the real deal Nordic sisters I tell you!), I have my own little frozen obsession going on lately since I got this bad boy for my birthday: FROZEN TREATS! Ice cream, sorbets, sherbets, popsicles….you name it. I’ve been looking for interesting recipes to try – and all of these got me intrigued! I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love me some good ol’ strawberry ice cream, but if you’re going to make your own ice cream, wouldn’t you want to try something that you just can’t find at the store?! I think the first one on my list is going to be that yummi watermelon sorbet - perfect for the warmer weather coming up! So come on and sing with me “Let it go, let it goooo. Don’t count the calories anymooooore!”
Do you guys have any fun recipe to share? Send them my way, I’d love to add them to my list!
Above images: 1. Cantaloup melon ice cream |2. Roasted rhubarb sherbet. |3. Watermelon sorbet |4. Blueberry maple cheesecake ice cream. |5. Plum sorbet with rosemary shortbread cookies.|6. Lemon verbena buttermilk ice cream.
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With hubby’s family and friends staying at our house and a gazillion projects to finish and my crazy nesting urges, to say that this week has been hectic would be an understatement. But it’s time. It’s time to take the time. Time to slow down. Time to enjoy these little girls before their sister arrives and all of a sudden they are no longer so little. Time to give my body a rest and put my feet up. Next week I will be 37 weeks and this baby could come any time. Between now and then I need to stop the frenzy and remember to take time to smell the roses and hug big balloons
Happy Friday, friends!
Pictures from a quick family escape to Napa last weekend. All pictures by This Little Street.
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Oh you guys I am so excited to share today’s DIY with you – giant animal wall stickers that I made with removable wallpaper for the girls bedroom! And the best thing, I am included free animal printable for you guys so you can just make these at home in just a few easy peasy steps – if you can trace and cut, you can easily do this! The girls went absolutely nuts when I put these up on their walls, and I loved them so much too that I had to put a couple flamingos in my own bedroom
You guys loved the pics of my wallpapered living room and entrance + tips I shared a couple weeks ago – that removable wallpaper is seriously DA bomb and I just had to use it upstairs too! A while back I saw these giant animal stickers, but they are only available in the Netherlands (and a bit expensive for my wallet) – and so there I went finding a way to make my own. And I am so happy that Spoonflower, the company that sells the removable wallpaper I used downstairs agreed to jump with me on this projects and send me a few 1/2 rolls of gorgeous wallpaper to try out my idea!
When I asked the girls what animals they wanted in their bedroom, the first thing they screamed was: “A UNICORN!!!!!”. Poor little girls, they still think that we’re going to see unicorns next time we go to the zoo. I keep telling them they don’t really exist, but it just goes out the other ear They also asked for a bambi and some flamingos….which I am really glad they did because I wanted some for myself So there, we ended up doing a tower of unicorn/bambi/flamingo on one wall, and I put another bambi and a mama rabbit with her babes in another wall
Now – I know these stickers are more geared towards little girls. Would you guys by chance be interested in another round of giant stickers, more “boy” friendly stickers? Thinking bears, lions, foxes, etc – although really I know my girls would be happy with all these animals…..anyway, let me know what animal you’d like in the comment section if I do a round 2 for you guys
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Usually I am all about homes that don’t have a lot of darker colors (if any), but I am loving the contrast of darker colors with pastels – the pastels help soften the industrial vibe of this home, and the dark helps break the sweetness of pastels. Not a combination I would have thought of, but a total win if you ask me! And that kitchen? My oh my! This home isn’t big at all, but you can tell that the owners made the most of the space they had in the choice of furniture and clever storage solutions – proof that small spaces can be just as bold and beautiful as big ones (just like this studio and that one that I featured earlier in the blog).
And with that, how about this beautiful Vanilla blackberry mascarpone cake for two by Sweetapolilta? I have a thing for anything blackberry – my mom has the biggest blackberry bush in her backyard where these big, juicy, sweet-but-not-too-sweet blackberries grow, and have have so many memories of, well, me stuffing my face with them until the juice dripped on my chin….so I’d say this cake is a must try! Plus, aren’t the colors of the frosting the prettiest? Must learn to frost like this!!! <—– wishful thinking. Find the recipe here!
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Can’t believe we’re almost there! my oh my, can this belly of mine get any bigger? It doesn’t feel like it – but I guess I am wrong since baby girl is supposed to be in there for another month! I am definitely in penguin mode now – waddling is in full motion;) Let’s be real here – and don’t let the above picture fool you- I am SO DONE physically. As much as I really enjoy being pregnant, at this point everything hurts and I can’t wait to feel comfortable in my own body again…feels like such a remote idea at this point! Just like with the girls, I keep having A LOT of contractions all the time and I keep wondering if that means she will come early like her sisters. it doesn’t matter, whenever she decides to show up, we’re 100% ready for her! I love to see the baby stuff that has popped up everywhere in our home – preparing for a new life, a new little person to join our family is one of the sweetest, most exciting thing. the nursery is almost done (can’t wait to share with you soon!). I am trying to wrap up my last big projects so that I can rest up in may before she arrives – which is SO hard because the urge to nap is getting bigger and bigger already!
Also, a link love with some of my favorite things this week! Happy Friday, and happy Easter, friends
♥♥ Easter bunny lollipops DIY.Because every treat tastes better dressed up as a lollipop. ♥♥
♥♥ Love more, worry Less ♥♥
♥♥ The most genius DIY kid toy: a plantable felt garden! ♥♥
♥♥ Crazy about photography? Win a Canon Rebel T3i on my friend Jessica’s blog here! ♥♥
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Last week I gave you guys a little preview of how I am planning on refreshing our upstairs bathroom, and today I wanted to share a little project that I made to organize our bedroom and add a little color We needed more storage space for little things items and thought I’d add this removable bathroom shelves, simply made with clear storage drawers, a painted wooden board and some nail polish. I absolutely LOVE how they turned out, and they are super affordable and easy to make! Probably one of my favorite projects I’ve ever made for this blog.
It’s been so nice to have the extra storage that I can easily move around or take down when we move out of our rental. I set up the finished shelf in the little window nook. Before them I didn’t really know how to best use that space, I tried to use wire baskets in the window to store things but it looked super cluttered and it wasn’t practical. I found these stackable clear show drawers, and they are actually perfect to store small to medium bathroom items.
I like that I can easily see what is where in each box, but didn’t want to clutter in them to show too much, so I decorate the front of each box with nail polish and put a small piece of contact paper to back it up – so cheap and easy, and a nice touch of personality! You’ve got so many possibilities with the nail polish, obviously I went a little fancy but you could simply do polka dots, tiny hearts, etc.