Big Girl Room Design

How my first baby is ready for a big girl room is beyond me! Time is a thief but as much as I’d like to keep her little forever, I think she is ready for this step.  She is creating her own opinions and growing up to be such a strong, loving, yet stubborn girl.  Daily I find myself treading between “cultivate her leadership skills” and “this girl is going to drive me to the crazy house” – but that is whole other blog post!

(A photo collage is necessary, obviously because this milestone calls for some serious reminiscing!)

For now, let’s stick to the easy stuff! Designing a space is so much fun! We are keeping the overall feel of her room the same – neutrals with pink accents and lots of unicorns – just updating! We got a rocking unicorn from Pottery Barn as well as a couple matching stuffed animals from her baby shower and she has grown to LOVE her “uni’s”.

We love the Jenny Lind crib that both of the girls have and I was so excited to see that there was a matching twin bed. I wasn’t so excited about the price though! After a little searching, I found a Jenny Lind option from Walmart. How exciting, right?! And a much better price point.

big girl room design

After the bed, I was searching for bedding and ultimately Target was the place! The Pillowfort collection was perfect for style and price and even outside of the Pillowfort collection, the comforter was very reasonable! I know the pillows and comforter will end up on the floor or touched with sticky hands and I couldn’t bring myself to make the investment from Pottery Barn or Land of Nod, unfortunately! The best part is that they have had a unicorn head to mount to the wall that I’ve had my eye on for months! This flower is the perfect shade of pink and I just know Aubrey will be obsessed with the ballerina doll! The crown pillow is the perfect princess accent and I cannot wait to create a little reading/hang out nook with the canopy! The ruffly comforter is the perfect girly touch along with the metallic heart sheets that match the canopy!

We’ve had some wall decor waiting to hang since we’ve remodeled, so I cannot wait to get it all situated! I’ll definitely share the ‘after’ pictures once we’ve got it set up!

That was the easy part – now I just have to figure out how to make the transition to a bed from her crib! Any tips?

Happy humpday! May the rest of your week be a good one!

xoxo

Whitney

 

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Life’s Essentials: Keeping a Routine

As a SAHM, its up to me to structure my day. As much as I love a list and filling my calender, I have to work really hard to not get in a rut. I find that I can let hours pass in the morning playing with the girls, attempting to do laundry or cleaning up the kitchen from the night before. By the time I’ve gotten us together enough to get out of the house, its time for lunch and naps! (for reals my life revolves around nap schedules right now!)

Now that our fall schedule is back in place, I’m trying to get myself into a routine to help our mornings run smoother and to help me feel successful at the end of the day! Whether you’re a CEO of a household or a CEO of a company – everyone wants to feel satisfied with their day, right?  Although the girls are just toddlers, we do have at least one out of the house class or activity everyday so that really helps motivate me to stick with some ground rules! These are some things that I know help our family be more calm and ready for the day and just help keep us all happy and organized!

Disclaimer: this is truly like one big pep talk to myself. By no means do I have it all figured out and this is just a way for me to organize my ideas for myself and feel accountable!

Preparation | “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Benjamin Franklin hit the nail on the head with that one. It is so simple, but it is the hardest thing for me to do. Procrastination has been the name of my game for years! Why would I pack our drinks/snacks/lunches the night before when I can do it in the morning when I’m rushing around with two kids at my feet?! Because. I want to feel ready for the day, and not frazzled first thing in the morning.

One load a day | Laundry is a task that I really don’t mind doing, but it can definitely turn into a lofty chore if it let it! Our hamper, the girls’ hampers, sheets, towels…I know everyone has to wash their clothes but why does it feel like we have enough laundry to cover the entire neighborhood for the week?! I’ve found that spending an entire day in the laundry room isn’t fun for me or the kids. So putting in a load in the morning that I can switch over at some point in the day and be done with by nap time is an easy way to eliminate the dread of tackling Mt. Everest once or twice a week!

Set an alarm |  Sleep is a hot commodity around here.  With a 2.5 and a 1 year old in the house, I feel like I’ve been in a constant state of “mombie” for the past few years. We have finally gotten into a good bedtime routine with the girls so that we get an hour or two to ourselves before we go to bed, but I’m still waking up once or twice at night with the little sis.  Even so, having 30-60 minutes to myself before the crazies wake up is a great way to start the day! Hot coffee, I can get ready if I want, empty the dishwasher in peace, or just relax on my phone or computer to blog. Do I still snooze?  Yes. But ultimately I try to remember how good I feel once I’ve had some time to myself first thing.

Keep a clean sink | Do you know how long it takes to put one coffee cup, one plate, and a couple of utensils in the dishwasher? Like 45 seconds. Do you know how long it takes to put an entire day’s worth of dishes in the dishwasher plus clean up from dinner?! It feels like an hour! Throughout the day I find it really easy to just set things in the sink and move on to the next thing. But you know what the bummer is? My mom isn’t coming behind me to wash them all! I am the mom…what?! At the end of the day after dinner, its better for all of us and our bedtime routine if dinner clean up is just that and not from the entire day!

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It has a place | We have a few areas of the house that can easily be considered a drop zone. Did I grab the mail? Set it by the phone. Did I just come in from running errands? Drop everything on the island. Do I have clean laundry? Leave it on the laundry room counter. This may be my worst habit. The kitchen can tend to become the ‘catch all’ area and soon feels like a cluttered disaster that seems like I can’t keep clean. By having a place for everything, it eliminates the clutter. By taking just a few minutes to put things away in their proper place I don’t feel like I have to overhaul the entire house to get it clean. I was watching InstaStories and Kate from The Small Things Blog (k8_smallthings) mentioned that she keeps her house within 10 minutes of clean. So at any point – for example if some company were to say they’re coming – you could get your house picked up within 10 minutes. Such a good rule.

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(In a dream world my kitchen would look like this all the time. It was short lived!)

These are some things I strive for but still have to work on each day.  When I take the time to prepare for my day I feel like the days run smoother and I enjoy my time with the girls more. Do you have any go-to tips for feeling prepped and ready for your day? I’d love to know!

xoxo

Whitney

Head over to Confessions of Parenting to find all sorts of home and family posts that linked up for the first #WanderingWednesday!

Wandering Wednesday

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Office Closet with elfa

Something about an organized space is so calming. I truly think that when I’m in a clear space, I have a clear mind. Chaos and clutter makes my whole life feel crazy – and let me tell you – between being home with kids all day and always feeling like I’m rushing, the living room and kitchen clutter is enough around here! (You’ll get a glimpse of that crazy show any day you watch my stories on Instagram!) The office is somewhere that I can control without worrying that the kids will destroy it – for now. Slowly but surely the progress is happening and the latest is in the closet.

The most difficult area for me has been the shelves of gift wrap/craft supplies! From piles of unorganized bags and tissue paper to boxes of ribbon and bows, these shelves were a hot mess! And don’t get me started on cards! I will prepare early and buy cards for the occasions coming up in the next months and then loose them and have to buy them again – so frustrating! Let me show you the area I’m talking about.

 

This area would cause anyone to have a meltdown, right?! So I searched and searched for a solution.  Even with a walk in closet in this room, it wasn’t big enough for the crazy beautiful work stations or big drawers for gift wrap, tissue paper, and ribbon rods that I saw on Pinterest. BUT I did find the option for gift wrap storage within the elfa solutions line at The Container Store. I had the best time exploring this organizational heaven without kids one afternoon and came home with an over the door rack that really helped me display my supplies with easy accessibility so I can see what I have and be able to use it! I linked it here and its ON SALE now! In the store I mixed and matched a bit with the help of an organizing expert, which you can also do on the website!

I assembled it all myself while the girls were napping, super easy! I love that I’m utilizing a space that normally would be wasted! I did some purging of bags that looked used and ribbons that were basically empty but I kept anyway and was left with the items that I cannot wait to use! Ready for the after?!

Though I haven’t found the ‘perfect’ way to store tissue paper or the never ending supply of gift bags we’ve acquired, the elfa system from The Container store has seriously upped the gift wrap storage game! My bags, boxes and tissue are at least all separated and visible now that I purged some and my cards all have a home in that box so I can look for them BEFORE I go buy more at the store!

Loving this area of the office! Now on to the desk and paperwork situations!

xoxo

Whitney

Creating a Functional Office

In August of 2015 we moved out of our house for 8 months to do an extensive renovation. Since moving back in March 2016, we’ve slowly been finishing projects both big and small. One that seems simple but has been the most daunting is our office.

The office serves many purposes. A place my husband can work from home if need be, a crafting area, gift wrap storage, storage for photos and books, and the worst purpose: the catch all.  Not sure where to put it? The office. Not ready to hang it on the wall? Put it in the office. Want to hide it from the kids? Put it in the office. Although its a small room, it does have a good size walk in closet and an attached bathroom. Plenty of areas to stack stuff, close the door, and pretend it isn’t there. Well almost a year and a half of this has driven me to crazy town! It’s been my mission to get a handle on it all! Purge the things we don’t need and find a proper and functional place for the things we do! I cannot wait to do a more detailed post on the organization, but for now I’m dreaming of the end. Finally getting proper furniture (not the plastic fold up tables we are currently using), and being able to find the craft supplies or gift wrap I’m looking for before I give up and buy more!

I love the industrial design look and we’ve incorporated a few elements throughout our home.  I really want to go for it in the office! I still want to warm it up with some baskets, greenery, and maybe a rug – but this is the look I’m going for!

 

office design - the Whitney Michaels blog
I’ve had this clock since before we started the renovation and I cannot wait to hang it! I love the more simple desk for me since I’ll just use it for crafts or gift wrapping (which are all stored in the closet) or when I want to bring my lap top in there! My husband would potentially need to put construction plans as well as his computer on his desk, so an L-shape was ideal! I love the mixture of wood and metal as well as the more natural elements like the basket and fiddle leaf! I thought that light was super fun for either one of our desks or on the shelf and I’ve been dying to find a spot for this masculine, cool looking diffuser! (you can read how we incorporate essential oils into our home here)
Do you like the industrial trend that’s happening right now? I’d love to hear any office storage hacks or organization tips you have!
Happy Hump Day!
xo
Whitney
p.s. my friend Sharon over at Mama Chit Chat and I are hosting a new LINK UP!! Join us on the first Thursday of every month with some fun color inspiration, we would love to have you!
Tomorrow is our first one…all things red inspiring you in August.

Essential Oils {in our home}

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I have been using essential oils in our day to day lives for almost a year now. I started by just learning about oils from a dear friend, using them occasionally and now I use oils all throughout my day! I’d love to share just how I use them for our home in this post!

Being a SAHM with two babies, it shouldn’t be a surprise when I say there is always…I repeat ALWAYS…a mess happening in our house! I’m always cleaning up something sticky – whether I am wiping children, toys, high chairs, or counter tops. For this, Thieves comes to my rescue! With Thieves Household Cleaner I’ve made multiple spray bottles. One for everyday cleaning {high chairs, quick floor spills, general counter top cleaning, etc.} and one for de-greasing {stuck on counter top messes, the inside of my microwave, stove top, etc.}. I reach for these bottles at least 10 times a day and love that I don’t have to worry about leaving behind harsh chemical residue on the girls’ highchairs or their toys! I added lemon essential oil to the heavy duty bottle and cannot get enough of the fresh scent of my clean kitchen!

Another item I couldn’t live without now is a diffuser in the kitchen! The kitchen really is the heart of our home and I feel like I spend at least 60% of my day in there! The first thing I do when I come out in the morning, after coffee of course, is start diffusing essential oils. If anyone in our family seems to be feeling a little run down or on the verge of catching a bug, Thieves + Orange is my go to! If I am up early and expecting some quiet time before the zoo wakes up, Stress Away is the way to go! For the week of Valentine’s Day, Jessica over at grapefruitandgold shared a recipe for “Candy Hearts” and I couldn’t get enough! After dinner while the dishes get done, I am obsessed with diffusing Purification + Lemon. I love that it cleans the kitchen air, not just perfuming over it! If I do this in the day time, particularly if I’ve made a hot lunch with a lingering scent I like adding Grapefruit to the mix too!

Needless to say, I’m a bit oil crazed over here when it comes to keeping up with our messy home! Follow along with my Essentials Instagram to learn more about incorporating oils in your house. If you are interested in being apart of my amazing team, follow the link on the Essential Oils page at the top of the blog, or email me at whitneymichaelsessentials@gmail.com .

Home Design: Master Bedroom

happy Friday! this week has just flown by {when do they not?} and I’m so excited for a weekend with the hubby home! although I’ve primarily documented my pregnancy and little one on this blog, I wanted to expand a bit into the realm of home renovation and decor over the next few months since we will be starting a complete renovation of our house! with a project this big, the design and decor aspects are both exciting and intimidating! since the project is still in planning mode {we are about 4-6 weeks out}, I’m excited to take you with me through the process of brainstorming, construction and final design! I’m sure a lot of the decor will be a slow process transitioning from our current furniture to new pieces once the house is finished, but a girl can dream! Am I right?!
first up, is our master bedroom. I really want to create a unified feeling throughout the whole house using mostly neutrals but I’ve also been obsessing over blues lately, especially navy so I want to incorporate that! I found this article on Pinterest about how to create a “whole home color palette” so I’ve been exploring that idea and using these inspiration boards that I’m creating as my plan! Stephanie, over on Olive & Tate just went through a huge home project {with a one year old and an amazing sense of humor} and I’ve been so excited for her “after” reveals and cannot wait for our own!
Master Bedroom
although I haven’t purchased any of this new furniture, I’ll link it all below just in case you love it as much as I do! clearly I’m obsessed with Pottery Barn, who isn’t?!
hope everyone enjoys FRIYAY and your weekend is full of sunshine and laughter!