A beautiful mess // house updates

Oh hey little, old blog of mine. Remember me? Apologies for the neglect.

Isn’t it funny how things change in life? I have always been somewhat of a planner. I like things orderly and I really like when things go according to my plan. Having children has forced me to lighten up a bit though. Now, having 4 kids, I have learned it’s a whole lot easier to laugh when things don’t go according to your plan instead of getting all worked up about it. There are still (many) times when I feel challenged to let things go, it is a nature that doesn’t just come naturally to me, I work really hard to be easy-going. Sometimes I find myself trying to calm myself down, and talk myself through a situation. God totally throws some hard balls my way and likes to remind me that His plans for my family are far better than any of my own plans.IMG_1572

{one of our updates was to paint all the oak built-ins in our living room navy and update the hardware}

The “plan” for this blog after Lucy was born was to never miss a beat, and just keep on posting somewhat regularly. I had seen so many women that I admire on the blogosphere do it before. So I prepped by finishing up posts ahead of time, and making lots of lists.  But as it turns out in life, and specifically in life with 4 little children, you can kiss any kind of “plan” goodbye. It seemed like one thing went wrong after another after we moved that prevented me from blogging. Not to mention just being at home with the 3 boys and an infant who nurses like it’s her last meal on earth every 2 hours. The days seemed to vanish away before they even started. Always so much to do, so many things to cross off our never-ending lists. For whatever reason the jump from 3 to 4 kids was SO HARD. And y’all moms that told me anything after 3 was no big deal are CRAZY. I was not prepared for this. I feel like I sort of… sometimes had it together when it was just the three boys, but now, HA, now I am the mom that forgets everything–including picking up other people’s kids from school (am I right Nicole! :/ ) 

IMG_1561

{my plate wall in progress in our kitchen}

Just a few things were keeping me busy in the past few months….

After Lucy was born we were showing our house, selling our house, packing up our house, moving into our new house. When we went through the house it seemed that all the paint colors were neutral, we had a few things in mind that we wanted to update but not much right away. Wrong-o! After moving in, of course that was not the case. All the walls seemed to be different shades of yellow or tan that just made everything look dirty. Every room needs at minimal, a few coats of paint.  Every light fixture replaced. Every outlet plate changed from yellow to white. All these little things really are little things, but when you have a family to take care of, they become big things that take up so much of your time. So little by little we are trying to make this home our own, without sacrificing our family time.  So far we have redone the entire kitchen, living room, 1 bathroom, dining room and Lucy’s bedroom. Luckily, we have  an incredible painter who has been helping us and she has been so flexible with our craziness at home.

IMG_1562

{this is the chandler of my dreams and I can’t believe it’s hanging in our kitchen. Ralph really enjoys replacing light fixtures…he will tell you he doesn’t, but he really does. }

Oh! Did I mention after we moved in we had NO internet for 4 months? Because that was a really fun time. I know it sounds a little snoody, and I do realize we are blessed to have been used to that luxury, but it was really hard.  First of all Ralph works from home and needs high speed internet. Also we don’t have cable, so Netflix is my lifeline with the kids somedays. There was no “hey kids, go watch TV for a 2 minutes so I can pee alone!” or, “How about you guys go turn on Curious George so I can brush my teeth today.” Our new house didn’t have any internet (besides Dish which was out of the question because it’s too slow to run Netflix and Ralph’s meetings), so we payed Charter to dig lines to our house. After that 4 month fiasco, I was so excited to get back to blogging. I was so ready and had so many ideas stored up that I just couldn’t wait to crack open my laptop and let the creativity flow. Plus I needed an outlet of my own. Something that didn’t involve, nursing, or diapers, or homework, or anything child related.  I opened up my laptop and started finishing up Lucy’s birth story. About 2 minutes in, I spilt my entire glass of water on my Macbook. I lost not only my new-er laptop, but everything…including Lucille’s birth story and lot’s of pictures that I hadn’t printed yet. I was heart broken and so bitter about it all. IMG_1568

{a little fall decorating–side note I have no idea how to decorate a mantel because I have never had one. Now I have 2 and I’m so clueless!}

I contemplated just throwing in the towel and shutting down my blog. When would I really ever have time anyways? How could I possibly just jump back in to blogging after skipping so many planned posts? Who would even want to read anything I wrote anymore because my life is such a mess? I can barley keep it together on a day to day basis with everyone’s school schedules and who needs to be here, when, where. I am no super mom. Moms aren’t going to be inspired by my mess. That night I was headed over to a girls movie night with some friends and we watched “Mom’s night out”. The movie incorporated our MOPS theme from last year in it which was, A beautiful mess. When I got home I couldn’t stop thinking about that message. I spent all night going through all my old posts, one by one. Starting from the beginning, where my pictures were terribly lit and I had no idea how to work my camera. I worked my way through recipes with typos, birthday posts, photograph improvements, and all the way to sweet Lucy’s birth announcement. My heart was so full of all the special moments I had shared and I simply couldn’t imagine never writing again. My life really is a huge mess and rarely do I have it all together. But it’s my mess. And it’s a beautiful mess. So here we go. Although I missed sharing a lot of big moments and tasty new recipes, I am jumping right back in (with a new Macbook in hand!) See ya when I see ya :)

IMG_1563

{this artwork hanger from IKEA is the best ever}

signature

Our space // bedroom

bedroomOur bedroom was the last room in the house that we decorated. Until about a year ago it was just a hodge podge of mismatched furniture and random décor. It never really bothered me too much though because I just love the coziness of our bedroom. Letting it go undecorated for a few years never really mattered to me. It is the perfect place to read a book in the afternoon when the kids nap, because of the great light, and the best space to pile in for family movies. It was time we gave the space a little loving though.  bedroom (8)bedroom (3) bedroom (7)The walls are a really subtle mint color, which I wanted to keep, and I knew I wanted to use navy for sure. The coral just kind of happened. The first thing I searched for was the perfect comforter. I found it at West Elm and it really is perfect; hand stamped, reversible, and light as a feather just the way we like our comforters. Unfortunately about a month ago, Liam painted his fingernails with red nail polish on our bed and dumped the rest of the bottle out on the comforter. If you look close you can see the spot. That was a rough day. I kept telling myself that it was only a “thing” and I shouldn’t be upset about it, plus I did leave the red nail polish laying out. But still! I searched for SO long for that darn bedding! We have tried everything and that stain isn’t coming out and of course they don’t make the bedding anymore. Anyway, a new comforter is on its way and Liam still walks the earth a free man. bedroom (2) bedroom (4) bedroom (5) bedroom (12)bedroom (17) bedroom (16) bedroom (15)bedroom (14)  add bedroom (1) add bedroom (2)

bedroom (11)

Most other things in our bedroom are thrifted, although there are a few new items. I am sure you will notice that seems to be a theme in my decorating style: mixing old with new. One of my hobbies is searching through thrift stores and in the past few years I have been slowly trying to incorporate all my treasures into our space. However, I am also really drawn to the bold patterns of modern designs which is where the “new” comes in. I couldn’t be happier with the way our bedroom turned out and it was way fun to collect all the pieces that brought it all together. My favorite vintage item in our room is the wooden Pepsi crate that I keep all my make-up organized in on my vanity. My dad actually found this one for me, he is where I get my love for treasure hunting from, and it’s in really great condition. I love the way this crate turns the feel of my feminine vanity, a little more rustic.

bedroom (10) bedroom (9)

Before I forget, Ralph really wants me to mention the perfectly hung t.v. in our bedroom. He also wants you to know that I thought hanging a t.v. this size in our tiny bedroom was a horrible idea, but in time I began to love where the t.v was and even the size. As you can see it’s on a slanted wall, so when you lay down to watch a movie the angle is perfect and you don’t strain your neck at all. Once again, Ralph knows best. Seriously. bedroom (1)

signature

Our space // Jack’s room

As our move approaches I am starting to photograph our current home, room by room, for sentimental reasons. We loved our cozy little home from the very first time we walked through the front door, so much so that we put an offer in the same day. As much as we loved it that day over 4 years ago, we adore it even more now that we have transformed each room to reflect our family. I want to capture every little detail for our photo albums and I thought it would be fun to share with you some of “our space” before we set off to our new home. So join me for a room by room tour of the Holzmann abode, we hope you like it as much as we do. This is our space.

Jacks room tour (8)

Add Jacks roomFirst up—Jack’s bedroom–probably my favorite room in the house because of how much fun it was to put together. Jack and I spent months finding pieces for his room and the end result was greater than the original vision I had by far.

Jacks room tour (9)Jacks room tour (6)The décor style for each room always seems to start with one single piece for me. This piece for Jack’s room was the big pirate ship on his wall. We found the ship thrifting one day for 6$, and then from there, we developed the idea to do a voyage themed room. I am not one for “themed” rooms so I wanted the room to have a theme without really feeling like we just ordered an entire bedroom set from Pottery Barn. We pulled inspiration from tons of catalogs and colors from different pieces we found at thrift shops.

Jacks room tour (11)

When we were looking through a magazine to get wall color inspiration, Jack found a room with the navy striped walls that he really liked. From there everything just seemed to come together. Jack’s last room was a colorful Dr. Seuss room and so I wanted this room to be slightly more sophisticated, but also still very much a little boys room. Almost every piece in his room is thrifted from somewhere or another which is probably why it remains my favorite room in the house. I will always remember what fun we had picking each treasure out, one by one, and the exciting feeling of finding “perfect” pieces for the room. Jacks room tour (7) Jacks room tour (5)
Jacks room tour (3) Jacks room tour (1) Jacks room tour (2)Jacks room tour (12) NEW Jacks room tour (3) NEW Jacks room tour (1) NEW Jacks room tour (2)
Jacks room tour (21) Jacks room tour Jacks room tour (20) Jacks room tour (19) Jacks room tour (18) Jacks room tour (17) NEW Jacks room tourJacks room tour (16)

I was so sad to be done decorating this room that afterwards I immediately started re-docrating our master bedroom! I guess once you get the decorating itch you can’t be stopped.

Feel free to comment below with any questions about items in Jack’s room. Like I said, most of them were thrifted but there are a few items that were purchased new–I would be happy to point you in the right direction of an item. As always thanks for stopping by and stepping into our home –remember this is the first part of a series on The Holzmanns, so be sure to check back to see more of our home.

signature

Artifact Uprising

I have been toying with what to do with all my Instagram photos (I am a firm believer in printing your photos and not keeping them on the computer) because you can’t just print them like your other photos from your camera. Believe me. I tried and they all were cut off in random places and the clarity was off. So everyone has been buzzing about this new site called Artifact Uprising, where you can make books out of your Instagram photos. I finally checked it out and was super impressed with the finished product. The site was quite easy to navigate and upload all your pictures. There are a few different designs you can choose for each page and then just drag and drop your photos in! I love the simplicity of the books and the quality for the price is fantastic. I did a book for the entire year of 2012 and will hopefully make another one next year–please stay around Artifact Uprising, we love you! ps even though this may seem like a sponsored post, it’s not. I just like passing on things that I am passionate about and wanted to tell y’all about this great site! uprising (1)

uprising (3)

uprising (4)

uprising

signature

10 must-have kitchen gadgets

1. KitchenAid KSM75WH Classic Plus Tilt-Head 4-1/2-Quart Stand Mixer, White

It’s safe to say I couldn’t live without my KitchenAid mixer. I use it for EVERYTHING. It is just so much easier for me to throw anything that needs to be mixed into the KitchenAid rather than stir it by hand (the laziest.) Whether it be whipping up mashed potatoes, cookie/brownie/bar batter, pasta sauces, and most importantly, when making cakes, the KitchenAid is where it’s at. Totally worth the investment one hundred times over.

2.Presto 07046 Tilt ‘n Drain Big Griddle Cool-Touch Electric Griddle

We just recently bought this griddle and I can’t believe we waited this long. We are such a breakfast family- we literally make eggs for breakfast daily during the week, and bacon and pancakes on the weekends. So it just made sense that we start using a griddle. It cut our breakfast cook time in half after we started using the griddle. Whats great about this one is that all the bacon grease drains through the bottom and then you just pour it into a container afterwards. So much easier than trying to pour bacon grease from a frying pan. Another huge benefit is the surface area of the griddle. You can make about 8 eggs or 12 slices of bacon at one time!

3.Hamilton Beach Digital Steamer

A steamer is a must have item. You can steam your veggies perfectly and safely every time with almost no effort on your part. I’m sure you know that by steaming your veggies in the microwave you are just killing all the nutrients in them and mutating the proteins of them. So although it is the easy way out, don’t use your microwave, ever! :( This steamer is a great way to start making the switch.What is great about this one is that it is a double decker steamer. You can fit so many veggies in there! Another fantastic use for this is hard boiled eggs. Ralph’s Grandpa Al taught me this trick a few years ago and they turn out perfect every time (steam for 16 minutes)! This steamer even has special little divits to hold eggs perfectly.

4.Cuisinart DLC-10S Pro Classic 7-Cup Food Processor, White

This is one of those make your life easier machines, again a plus for us lazy chefs. It does all the work for you when it comes to mincing herbs and garlic, shredding cheeses, slicing veggies, kneading dough, chopping and puréeing. And those are just the things that I use it for. There are numerous attachments that go along with it that can do much more beyond those things. This baby whips up a great batch of hummus!

5.West Bend 84915 5-Quart Oblong-Shaped Slow Cooker with Tote

Ralph got me this slow cooker for Christmas two years ago and I was hooked the first time I used it. I almost never use my crock pot anymore. The top pot is detachable which is super convenient. It also comes with a great carrying pouch which I thought I would never use but I have used it numerous times when we take a dish to pass somewhere. What I love most about it is that it doesn’t take up as much space on your counter as a crock pot, but it still has the volume you need.

6.Hamilton Beach 25450 Gourmet Panini Press

This baby comes in handy! Kids want grilled cheese for lunch, boom. 5 minutes, grilled cheese. We make hot sandwhiches in this ALL the time, especially in the winter with soup. This panini maker has made ruebens, hot beef sandwiches and french dip sandwiches to name a few, a breeze for our family! Love this!

7.West Bend 77203 Electric Can Opener, Metallic

Ok this electric can opener is the definition of laziness right? But I have had it for 4 years now and can’t imagine what life is like pulling out the manual can opener. I totally know how ridiculously lazy I am, don’t worry. But I use it so often and it sits right on the counter. With the press of a button you can have a can open in seconds. Whats awesome is that the top is magnetic so it not only opens the can, it hangs on to the lid so you can go on with your cooking and throw away the lid later.

8.Keurig B60 Special Edition Brewing System

We are huge coffee/tea drinkers so this is a staple in our kitchen. That being said we probably use it more than we should. What I love about the Keurig is that it makes a perfect “first pour of the coffee pot” cup of coffee every time. You know what I am saying right? The first pour of the pot is always the best. I also have come to love the fact that I only drink one cup of coffee …when I only make one cup of coffee. Usually when we would make a pot of coffee in the morning, we would drink the whole thing. We all know where that leads…Another thing I love is using my Keurig for guests. There is nothing easier/nicer than popping a k-cup in the machine and having a fresh cup of coffee for a guest when they are here.The Keurig is such a great investment and I LOVE it. The end.

9.Breville BTM800XL One-Touch Tea Maker

Ok. This one is spendy I admit it. But there are multiple uses for it, beyond a fabulous cup of tea. Ralph is really into loose leaf teas, so he will make a pot every afternoon or sometimes evenings. It has a variety of settings for the perfect cup of tea, whether it be green, black, oolong, herbal, white or custom. When the temperature is just right the basket of loose tea drops into the hot water and steeps for the correct amount of time, depending on the flavor. So it is the tea lovers dream. But I use this for baby bottles! It has a setting for just boiling hot water and you can set the exact degrees you want the water to be. So we figured out the perfect temperature for a bottle and after I was done breast feeding  we just would add the formula. It was super convenient.

10.Oster BVCB07-Z Counterforms 6-Cup Glass Jar 7-Speed Blender, Brushed Stainless/Black

This is a great standard blender, it gets the job done. I’m unaware of the need for a fancy blender. We mainly use ours for sauces, smoothies, ice cream shakes, baby food making, and purées when I don’t want to get the Cuisinart out. A blender is obviously a kitchen must have though!

What are your kitchen must-haves?

 

 

*this post is brought to you by Amazon but all opinons are my own.

signature