Author: Carolyn (Page 2 of 3)

1990’s Colonial

That’s a thing, right?

In trying to find the “style” of our home, I took a look around our neighborhood.  It’s a pretty established neighborhood with hills, large(ish) lots, big trees, and a park.  It fit all of our check boxes (with the exception of the one big grocery store in town that I hate) and it’s close to work, schools, and restaurants.  The homes in our neighborhood were built between the 1960’s to the 1990’s, depending on the location.  Ours is in the newer section and was built in 1993, and is considered a “large, expanded colonial.”

I thought maybe if I researched colonial homes, it may give me a bit more inspiration of what our style for this house was going to be.  It doesn’t really make sense to have a house on the beach that’s decorated in mid-century modern style, or a cabin in the mountains that’s decorated with coastal decor, right?

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Scandinavian? What?

What is my home style? This is a question I’ve been thinking about a lot lately, as I’m brainstorming more design ideas for our current home.  We plan to be in the house for a long time, and I’d love for it to be timeless.  I want something that is going to last through the ages without having to do a major design overhaul in 10-15 years when times and tastes have changed.

I’ve always loved coastal decor, since I spent a good part of my childhood at my parents’ beach house in southern Delaware.  When David and I moved to Maryland, we were just down the street from the Susquehanna River and the Chesapeake Bay.

When we moved to South Carolina, we weren’t too far from the beach where we lived in Charleston.  It just made sense… being near the water, and I loved coastal decor.  Done!

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Nursery Crafting

In our posts about Connor’s nursery, here and here, we glossed over a few projects that we worked on for the decor, so we figured we’d go back and talk about them, assuming you’re interested 😉

I grew up as a total cheapo.  My family made fun of me for everywhere we went I always claimed that I “forgot my wallet.”  I’m sure this has some crumb of truth in it, but I won’t give them that satisfaction to fully admit to it right now haha.  Now that we bring in steady paychecks and can live comfortably, and aren’t struggling, broke college kids, we’ve definitely loosened up on our spending habits.  At heart though, I’m still a cheapo.  I had a lot of ideas for the nursery, that big box stores don’t typically sell.  They’re more the types of decor that you find on Etsy.  As much as I appreciate supporting someone to do that type of work, some of the prices are crazy.  So I researched and pretty much decided that I would do them all myself.

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Yea, but is it “sitting on the floor” bad?

That’s what David said to me as I finished cutting in the paint around the window in the first floor bathroom over Christmas break and told him “well that’s not what I was expecting.”

A few years ago when we lived in our SC house, I picked out this beautiful navy blue for the fireplace wall and a wall in our dining room.

I wanted a color that would complement it pretty well, so I chose a pretty grey that looked great next to that navy blue on the paint cards.  I should have realized my mistake there, but I didn’t.  I went ahead and bought that 5 gallon pail of that grey paint, because that was going on the rest of the walls in that main room.  That was a BIG room.

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Bringing the Outside In – Connor’s Nursery Part II

Read Part I of this post in case you missed it!

With all of the ideas together on my idea board, we got to work.  First off, we got started on the planked/shiplap wall because we knew it would probably make a big mess in the room.  I think we’ll probably write a whole post on this wall, so for now, we won’t get into any details.

I sent this picture to my in laws to show them the nursery progress we were making, and they told us we should just keep the wood grain.  I think its a generational thing?  Older generations want to keep the grain to show the quality, whereas we just want to paint everything.  I had that conversation with my mom once.  I’m just generally not a big fan of wood grain unless its on the floors or furniture. What do you think?

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Bringing the Outside In – Connor’s Nursery Part I

I was so excited to do a nursery.  I mean, check out our [facebook] birth announcement:

Geez, I kind of miss my long hair. 🙂  Anyways, when we found out we were having a baby I started planning right away.  I loved the outdoor/adventure theme because it could easily be for a boy or a girl and I always knew that no matter what gender our baby was that the room was going to incorporate navy blue in it… my favorite color. I always had a blue room growing up, usually navy, sometimes a sky blue on both the walls and ceiling complete with huge white clouds (sorry Dad!). Although, I guess I did go through that Little Mermaid phase at one point…

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Merry Christmas & Happy New Year from our home to yours!

We hope you all had a wonderful holiday!  We had some good quality family time over the past few days and spent today relaxing and enjoying some quiet time at home.

Christmas with a little one gives it a whole new meaning, and this was our favorite Christmas ever. Even though Connor didn’t really understand what was going on, it was awesome to see his eyes light up with the wrapping paper everywhere and the joy of discovering a new toy!

Keeping this one short and sweet, I’ll leave off with some pictures…

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Happy New Year!!!

Love, Carolyn (Mama Bear), David (Papa Bear), Connor (Lil’ Bear), Riley, and Bailey

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Our Bi-level Problem

You may have noticed on our house needs/wants list that we specifically spelled out that we did not want a bi-level nor split-level. I grew up in a beautiful bi-level. My parents got the house built and we moved in when I was 8 years old.  I remember my parents telling us about it before we moved in, saying that the kitchen was going to be upstairs, and we were so confused.  What if we’re downstairs watching TV and need a glass of water?  We have to go ALL THE WAY upstairs to get it?? Yes.  Yes you do.  It’s not a big deal. And it wasn’t.  It didn’t really phase me after that.

I guess should define “bi-level” for those who are not familiar.  A bi-level home is a home that you usually enter the front door and have the option to immediately walk upstairs or downstairs.  The kitchen and main living areas are usually upstairs, and a family room is usually downstairs. Related, a split-level is similar, but has multiple levels and half floors throughout the house.

So when David and I were house shopping for our first house in Maryland, we toured a ton of houses, but eventually settled on a really cute bi-level in an awesome neighborhood.  It wasn’t weird to me that the kitchen was upstairs because that’s what I had grown up with.  Granted, the kitchen was small, but it was so open and incorporated with both the dining room and living room, that you didn’t really notice.

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This old house


Ok, its not really that old.  It was built in 1993.  Almost as old as me. It’s not the prettiest house around.  It doesn’t scream quality and character.  But we’re excited to put our mark on it and make it our own.

Last post we talked about our forever home wish list and what we got with this home.  Here is the list again (the underlined items are what we got):

Must Haves (at least):
4 bedrooms
2.5 baths
2000 sq ft
2 car garage
0.5 acres
Master Suite w/ Large Walk in Closet & Large Bathroom (Dual vanity or enough space to add dual vanity)
– Large Kitchen or the ability to make it into a large kitchen
– Open floor plan or the ability to make it an open floor plan
Workshop space (can be in basement or even detached building)

Would Like:
– 3 car garage
– 1-2 acres
Separate Laundry Room w/ room for utility sink
Garage to not face the street
– Gas stove
– Screened in porch or sunroom

Definitely Not:
– Split Level
– Bi Level
– On a busy street

Two of the biggest concerns with this house are going to eventually be our biggest projects.  Those are from the must haves list, where we currently don’t have a large kitchen or open floor plan, but we do have the ability to make it happen.  But, it’s going to be more costly than we initially imagined.

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Foreeeevver home. I want to be foreeeevver home.

You’ll probably hear us say this a lot when referring to our current Delaware home. It’s our forever home.  After relocating for our jobs 3 times, it was time to settle down in one spot and start our family.

Back when we had our first house in Maryland, I had always had a vision that when we finally settled down long term we would be building our dream home.  Like, the type that you ride around town/the country side, find a beautiful piece of land, locate an architect and builder, come up with blue prints, and have this house personalized and built to every single desire and preference.  Something like this:

Image courtesy of

Sounds amazing right?  Also sounds friggin expensive.  My naive first time home buyer self didn’t understand the dollar signs that went along with my ideas.

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