7/24/17

creating a shared office space for mama + her girls

i've shared a little bit about this new space on instagram that we created in partnership with Big Lots. i think this collaboration was the push that i needed to make good use out of the nook space in mine + aaron's bedroom. the room overall feels much like a loft space featuring what most lofts do, a little nook for whatever one may dream it to be. over the years it has housed a dresser, a cozy chair for late night feedings, a beautiful fort space, and various baskets of books and toys that i kept near for the girls whenever we found ourselves lounging around in mom and dad's bedroom. while all uses were great and served their purpose when needed, it was time to change things up again and try to create space that could carry us a further distance.


kaia has been asking for a desk in her room since kindergarten but unfortunately there just isn't the space for it without making things feel cluttered. in addition, i too have been wanting a space to work but one that didn't require working in the family room or at the dining room table. while there is nothing wrong with either of those spaces, i wanted a space that offered peace and quiet and privacy when needed while at the same time gave my girl something she's been wanting too. 

we now have a functional office space that houses both mine and the girl's things to do what we need to do. we added the built in shelves and cabinet door to give the space more function and coziness. the cabinet door is actually the access to our attic but there is enough room to store my camera and camera lenses in there, which i love. it's a perfect spot to hide from curious hands and i love that it's not sitting out for all to see. 

outside from a few vintage pieces, we were able to snag most of what you see from Big Lots when they had their friend's and family sale. this space is so budget friendly and honestly didn't take much work or effort other than the built-in because "hello, old house with crooked walls!" 

some of the accessories you see are actually from Big Lot's "back to campus" collection, which kaia took a strong liking too. i love the "love u babe" sign which is also a light. it's a neat way to leave notes or messages to/for each other as well as serve a good learning tool for the girls. i opted for fake succulents because let's be honest, real ones wouldn't survive with my younger two around and went for canisters/jars found in their kitchen section to hold things like pencils, paperclips, letters for the letter board, etc.


i am giddy over this new space and find myself coming here after bedtime just to sit and dream. i was telling a sweet friend of mine that i met through instagram that it only took us 9.5 years to find this space's function. she reminded me that "sometimes it takes that long, but that's okay!" 

. . . . . . . . . . . .  i am happy to report, it was worth the wait.






* thank you Big Lots for the help in designing this space as well as sponsoring this post. all opinions are my own as well as the overall design of this space. thank you reader for the help in supporting brands that help support this space. 

6/4/17

a spring promise

it seems in Minnesota we wait and wait for spring to show up and when it finally does, it rolls right into summer. after all these years being a Minnesota native, you would think i'd be used to this phenomenon. simply not the case, however. i love this season for all that it is, even if it's short lived from where we live. so before it passes us right by, a few things i love about spring.

I love spring for it's cool brisk mornings in light layers and cozy knits. i love it for it's warm sunshine and dappled light.

i love it for the glorious gift of blooming trees and the wonder that it brings. i love spring for the beautiful smell of it's wind and the linger it leaves behind in our windblown hair.


i love spring for it's promise of growth and change. 



i love spring for it's gift of longer days and playful smiles and new adventures. 

* photography by Kadi Tiedi Photography + stroller by Silver Cross US

5/15/17

a beautiful DIY all natural air freshener for your home

 
i love a good natural way to freshen up our home while giving our guests a warm welcome with beautiful + calming scents as they come through our front door. i've found dried florals blended with essential oils makes a lovely diffuser + air freshener while also adding a touch of pretty to your space.


- how to make a natural air freshener for your home - 

simply gather dried phalaris grass  + sweet annie  + celosia cockscomb flowers. these types of flowers and grasses tend to soak up the oils best, which make their use and aroma last for a long time. depending on where you live you may find them foraging or you can simply ask your local florist if they carry them. farmer's markets are good places to find these too or you can also order them online. i've been lucky enough to find mine at our local farmer's market. 

once you have gathered your goods you're all ready to create your bouquet. make however you want or like, just make sure to leave some stem for hanging. you can use floral wire to tie the stems together as well as to hang your bouquet. 

after your bouquet is made it's ready for those yummy oils. we use young living essential oils you can find here or order here but you're certainly welcome to use whatever you have on hand. simply add a few drops to your dried florals and it's all set and ready to be hung and welcome you home. 



5/8/17

where we gather // a family's room

what once was a dreary family room filled with bulky furniture and an entertainment center much too big, is now a bright much more functional space for us to gather in. our family room is the ultimate cozy hub in our home. it's where we gather most evenings to wind down after a long day of play or where we cuddle up when we're not feeling well or for rainy day movie marathons or where we tend to scatter our toys and crafts about. we spend a lot of time here and because of that i wanted to make it into something better than it was.


a while back i had an idea to give this space a better feel and look from the dark not so functional space it once was. i wanted the space to feel bright. clean. bigger. and more functional than what it had going on. once i had Aaron on board, we drafted up the plans and worked with my step-dad to help us carry it out. it took us a little over three weeks from start to completion.


the built in saves space but offers us all the storage we need for movies, books, blankets to cozy up with, or the like.  


i'm still playing around with things but for the most part it's complete and ready to be lived in. i think my favorite thing about this room though is the poster size photos of the girls. i loved putting them together and coming up with the images to frame. it was super easy to do too, which is always a bonus! 

a source list for all the things :
- chocolat leather sofa from article 
- rug from rugsUSA
- throw pillows a blend of pottery barn here + here and ikea 
- lamp is target 
- poster size picture frames frame bridge // i use them for anything that needs to be framed. seriously, they are amazing! 
- little clock is from target
- gray pot for plant anthropologie 


* beautiful photography by Melissa Oholendt for when our home was featured on The Glitter Guide. You can see more images of our home on The Glitter Guide, here 


5/2/17

keeping your business + self organized





it's been nearly a year since the soft launch of my bloom business. in june of twenty sixteen i took a leap of faith to start my dream business. i have been dreaming of bloom for a long time. what once was this idea spinning around in my head for years, i finally took the rumbling storm head on. i put aside perfectionism, invested in some fabric, and told myself 'you're never going to know, unless you try' over and over again. my quest became 'think less + just do'. stop talking. start making. in just a few short weeks my mother and i sewed 150+ sets of pillow cases and sold out faster than we ever imagined. i had no idea what i was doing, really. and i had absolutely no idea where all this would lead. but what i did know is that i wanted to share my designs and creations with all of you, and i'm glad that i have.

since this time last year, i've learned and gained a better understanding of how to run a small shop online. while i'm certainly no expert, and have a ways to go, the one thing i do know for sure is keeping myself and my business organized, regardless big or small.

after months of trying to manage things simply by memory or sending out ridiculous, and quite possibly embarrassing invoices, i subscribed to a program specifically for those that are self-employed to help me out. the QuickBooks Self-Employed + Turbo Tax Self-Employed program has literally put my old system to shame. by not only providing efficiency, this program breaks things down categorically and the best part is, it's simple. the thing i have found most helpful is the use of their app to track my mileage. i was terrible at remembering to write my miles down. now with the help of their program, my phone simply tracks how far i've traveled and the reason of my travel. easy, right? you can also manually add miles or forgotten trips too, which is nice. i've learned that every mile counts towards those end of the year savings, so this is such an important thing to remember for any business owner.

the other thing i love about the program is how easy it is for me to track my expenses. there is no need to fret over making sure all my receipts are accounted for at the end of the year. this program has made the process so much easier for me and decreased some anxiety too. i simply add my expenses and it tracks is all for me. i also like having that visual of seeing my expenses in one place. it helps not only keep me accountable and in check, but it helps when it comes to prioritizing as well.

i can honestly say i'm managing my business much better now having this program in place. i was lost before, but i've found a much better way.

with all this said, i am more than happy to answer any questions that you may have about bloom, my process or even how i started. again, i'm no expert and have a lot to learn yet, but i would be more than happy to share what i do know.



* this post is brought to you by a partnership between living life's moments and QuickBooks + Turbo Tax Self-Employed business program. all opinions are my own. thank you for supporting posts like this that help support and build content for this space. the photography is my own with the help of my three year old daughter. she took the images of me. 

4/24/17

a whimsical fort for little ones


over the weekend we took down the crib. after seven years of having one stand in our home, being a home for sleep for all three of our babies, was slowly taken down piece by piece and packed away in our attic. the crib stood in this little nook in my and aaron's bedroom for a little over a year. where we used to greet our smily babe each morning, has now been replaced with a whimsical peaceful fort for all three of my girls to share and enjoy.

drenched in ambiance lighting, clothed in cozy blankets, draped with my grandmother's old lace and croqueted table cloths and stacked high with plush pillows, this is a new magical spot in our home. i mentioned to the girls that this would be temporary as mama had plans to make this a "working space" for herself… little did i know how much i, too, would fall hard in love with this whimsy little nook. it just may stay up for awhile.


how to create a whimsical peaceful tent/fort for little ones 

this could easily be done in anyone's place of living. it took me about all about a half hour to put together.

what you need: 
lace or croquet table cloths. lace tend to be better because they don't weigh as much as the croquet cloths do. you can also use light weighted sheets for this.
- a string of white ambiance lights
- stapler or small nails. i used a stapler because they leave behind tiny holes compared to nails.
- painters tape or any kind of safe tape to put on walls
* i crafted a banner with scraps of fabric a while back for a photo shoot and hung it on the wall to add a little more whimsy. you can certainly craft one up but it's certainly not necessary.

once you have your supplies gathered and the corner or nook you have picked out to build your tent/fort, simply start draping those beautiful lace cloths. you really can't do wrong with this. i hung the lights first by using tape and a few staples. just be sure to be very careful when using staples with your string of lights. we don't want anyone to get hurt or your string of lights to get wrecked in the process. once your lights are hung the way you want them, start hanging your lace table cloths or fabric or sheets until it looks the way you like.

final steps: 
- add pillows and cozy blankets and a basket of good books to read with your little ones
- climb in, get cozy, relax and enjoy!