WHAT I WORE | Indian Summer

chambray duster and linen pants

Hello, Fall! Also, hello heat wave. All I wanted to do today was take the kids to the store and buy us all cute and cozy sweaters, then indulge them when they ask if they can drink hot chocolate. But it’s supposed to get up to 90 in Canton this weekend, and we’re headed to a tropical vacation! Ah, well. Fall will be waiting for us when we return. As will the cozy sweaters and hot drinks.

I popped in at the thrift store this summer to grab a couple of roomier dresses to get me through the renovation weight gain. (Ugh, I know I mentioned it before, but I have such a difficult time balancing anything in life when I’m in the middle of an all-consuming project like our house renovations!) Anyway, I’m not mad about it or anything, it’s just life. I figure I’ll get back to the grind of exercising when we finish the downstairs bathroom and entryway. In the meantime! (Ugh, tangent— sorry!) I wanted to grab a couple of inexpensive things to see me through. You can always count on the thrift store to have mini length chambray dresses— the kind your first grade teacher may have worn, or maybe your mom in the 90s. (Hi, mom!) I grabbed one of these dresses that fit me, and took it home to mix in with my wardrobe.

To modernize the feel, I left the lower buttons undone and pulled on a pair of breezy linen cropped pants and minimal suede sandals. Paired with a hairdo I donned immediately after showering this morning, and I’d say I’m vacation ready! Now, where’s my floppy hat?

chambray duster and linen pants

 

O U T F I T    D E T A I L S :

 

dress: thrifted / pants: Need Supply / shoes: Via Spiga

 

chambray duster and linen pants

chambray duster and linen pants

 

LIVING ROOM PROGRESS: Halfway There!

joybird yellow welles sectional

Our living room is soooo close to being completed, I can almost taste it! And it tastes like drywall dust and mortar. (It’ll taste much better once the dust has settled.) While there’s still work to be done in this room, I wanted to show you guys what it looks like so far. Because, so far so good, right?!

The style I’m gravitating towards in our new home is what I like to call Seventies Transitional. A bit of traditional mixed in with 70s modern, with a light and airy vibe. In general, I’m keeping spaces neutral and accenting with a pop of color where it counts. (Remember my pink sink? Still loving it!) My plan for the living room was to make a statement with a gorgeous yellow Joybird sectional. I’m in love with the style and tufting of this sofa, but we may actually spring for a larger complete corner sectional, thanks to Joybird’s excellent customer service. Stay tuned for more on that front! But you can bet we’ll be keeping it yellow.

Mandi Makes a New Home

Boral Cultured Stone fireplace

A friendly reminder of what this space used to be, courtesy of my cell phone when we first visited this home. Where there once was a drop off into this room, we built a step and changed the flooring to signify a change of levels, and also because I wanted an area with light floor, but maybe not the whole first floor of the house.

We installed Lumber Liquidators Island Pearl engineered bamboo flooring in here and the sunroom, and covered high traffic areas with traditional style area rugs (linked at end of post). It was super easy to lay, as the floor boards are all once length, and you can cut each row’s starting board to vary the differences. We purchased a nail gun specifically for the type of nails the flooring needed (which of course was different from the other two kids of nail guns we had!), which cost us around $100 at Lumber Liquidators— much cheaper than paying for installation. So worth it!

The flooring on the top of the step is also from Lumber Liquidators— Natural Maple engineered wood.

70s transitional style

(The blue tape you can see on the floor in some of my pictures is where we have to use a sawzall to cut out register openings.)

fireplace before

Boral Cultured Stone fireplace

The absolute most dramatic change we have done to this space is to the walls! Specifically, the fireplace wall. We painted all of the walls in this room Benjamin Moore’s Super White, and hired a mason friend to lay Boral Cultured Stone veneer over the old brick and atop the drywall to create a dramatic stone fireplace wall.

Boral Cultured Stone is a manufactured stone, which comes in a lot of different styles, and is lighter weight than natural stone, so you can lay it in spaces which might not be able to withstand the weight of real stone. Also, it’s much more affordable. We got our stone from Mason Steel in Walton Hills, Ohio, where they have a showroom so you can check out the material before purchasing. I chose the Old Country Fieldstone in Summit Peak color way to achieve a vintage 60s looking fieldstone wall.

As I shared before, we were unable to remove the platform underneath the old TV cabinet, so I decided to build it out to match up with the hearth, taking the hearth all the way across the room. We’re covering the plywood with Wonderboard, then smoothing it over with a few sim coats of Ardex Feather Finish in white. In the nook to the left of the fireplace, I’m building floating shelves and mounting a tv in the middle.

70s transitional style

Slowly but surely I’ve been moving plants over from my parents house, where they had been living with me during the first month we owned this home and the space was uninhabitable.

Boral Cultured Stone fireplace

Basically, all I have to finish in the room is the hearth and drywall beside the fireplace (which includes the shelving), and then it will be finished! So exciting! I seriously can’t wait to host my first movie night in here!

Boral Cultured Stone fireplace

So, that’s all for now, folks. Timelines are tricky, because everything takes longer than you expect, and somethings schedules get crazy with social events. I guess it would be easy for me to hide away in the house until projects are finished, but life is going on around me, and I don’t want to miss out on everything!

Next up I’ll share a progress update on the kitchen which is so, so, sooo close to being finished. Much excitement around here!

70s transitional style

MATERIAL SOURCES

KIDDO CRAFT | Tic Tac Toe Snack Board

kid craft ideas- snack game board

One of the hardest parts of moving, from the kiddos’ perspective, is that crafting has not been easy to come by! Most of our craft supplies are still packed up, and we’ve only just began to have a space suitable for sitting and crafting the day away. But I looked around and found some leftover materials from our kitchen renovation, and came up with a fun craft Lucy really enjoyed, especially since in the end it involved playing games while eating a favorite snack.

I partnered with Horizon Organic on this project to feature their honey graham snacks, but this project would also work great with Horizon cheese shapes and your kiddo’s favorite fruit. Follow Horizon on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest for more fun snack ideas!

kid craft ideas- snack game board

DIY snack game board

This project was free for me to make, because I already have the materials on hand. But if you don’t have scrap wood, chalk paint, and sandpaper laying around, they aren’t to expensive to pick up in stores.

MATERIALS

  • 5×5 piece of wood
  • sandpaper (We started with 80 grit and finished with 180)
  • white chalk paint, or white primer
  • artist’s paint brush
  • optional: wax or your sealer of choice— butcher block oil is a great food-safe option

DIY snack game board

Lucy has seen me working with power tools and building things for as long as she’s been alive. It’s a great passion of mine to empower her to be able to do and create anything she can imagine. But first, she needs to get to know the fundamentals of woodworking. I cut the wood before we got started, which left jagged edges that needed smoothed out. We talked about why we sand wood, and how to sand in the direction of the grain. Also, we talked about beginning with a lower grit (“more bumpy”) sandpaper to smooth out and rough edges and uneven places, then transitioning to a higher grit (“less bumpy”) sandpaper to smooth out the scratches and make it nice to touch.

It was really special to see her focus so much on getting out all of the scratches and corners! Look at that concentration.

kid craft ideas

After we wiped the saw dust off of our boards, we got out chalk paint to do our lines. We used chalk paint because it doesn’t require primer. But using primer would’ve worked too!

Painting lines was also a great preschool exercise for her. She did a pretty good job, I thought. But she did ask me, “Why is yours better than mine?” I told her I’ve had lots of practice. And then she told me she was going to practice a lot so she could be better than me. Ha! Sounds like a plan.

When I took this photo (above), Lucy asked me, “Do I look like an artist?”

kid craft ideas

Her first line was globbiest, but she quickly learned how to adjust to make finer, straighter lines. (I lightly drew the lines in pencil first, so she could trace them.)

kid craft ideas- snack game board

After the paint dried, we got out our Horizon Organic graham game pieces and began to play tic tac toe. I think I won five games in a row before she figured out she needed to focus more on blocking me than filling up the board with her chocolate game pieces.

kid craft ideas- snack game board

Lucy and I really had a nice time making these boards together! It was just enough of a process to be interesting to her, but not so long that it tested her patience too much for just a fun craft. I’m already thinking about other games we can make together! Bonus points if food is involved!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Horizon. The opinions and text are all mine.

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