Black Painted Fireplace

Brick Fireplace: To Paint or Not to Paint?

Image from Maiedae. Woaaahhhh buddy it’s so fun to be in a house where you can paint things and smash walls and rip out linoleum if you don’t like it!…

White Painted Fireplace

Image from Maiedae.

Woaaahhhh buddy it’s so fun to be in a house where you can paint things and smash walls and rip out linoleum if you don’t like it! Apartment after apartment had really gotten me into the mindset of not being able to change things up a whole lot, but this is an entirely new ball of wax, gang. It’s so fun to daydream about the changes that we want to make on the house, and start to switch things up little by little. Our newest debate: painting the brick fireplace.

I love fireplaces. Looooooove fireplaces. I used to beg my dad to stock our house with firewood and I was always the one who set the fires up and kept them going. It’s just so cozy and so… good. So I’m pretty pumped to be back in a house with a fireplace. The thing is, with the other updates we are making on the house, the fireplace is looking a little -ahem- rustic. Not that I don’t love rustic. But you know. Here’s a little behind-the-scenes fireplace snap from our house a couple of weeks ago:

brick fireplace

So how do you feel about slapping a beautiful coat of paint on an original brick fireplace? Brilliant? Blasphemy? I know there are definitely two camps here, and I’d love to get your thoughts. Do you have a fireplace that you’ve painted and loved (or hated)? Some of the inspiration I’m finding around the web is just beautiful, and I think it would make a world of difference in our space. And then, what do you paint it? White? Black? A color? Help me here, peeps! xoxo

Black Painted Fireplace

Image from The Brick House.

Comfy Heels for Fall

So remember when Kim Kardashian was pregnant and running around wearing super high heels and everyone was all upset about it? I’m starting to understand where she was coming from….

So remember when Kim Kardashian was pregnant and running around wearing super high heels and everyone was all upset about it? I’m starting to understand where she was coming from. I mean, swollen and achy feet or not, sometimes you just want to step it up a notch. Not to mention the fact that I’ve always felt like I look a little slimmer with a heel on (and if there was ever a time I wanted to look slimmer, it’s now). So Kim, I get ya.

I spotted these suede heeled booties the other day at Payless ShoeSource and at first I was like “yeah right my giant pregnant feet will not even want to hear that noise.” But then I put them on and it was like walking on pillows and now I never want to take them off. I’m pretty sure they’ll be a staple in my fall wardrobe, with everything from jeans to dresses.

See, I have problem feet to begin with. Anybody else out there rocking some plantar fasciitis? I developed it while dancing on tour a few years ago, it went unchecked, and it got so bad that I actually have bone spurs on both of my heels. Yeowch. So I have to be pretty careful about the shoes that I wear. But! These booties are in the Comfort Plus by Preditions line at Payless, and honestly, I could walk for hours in them. I’m always so absurdly grateful when I find a pair of comfortable shoes that don’t look like my grandma’s orthopedics. It’s the little things, ya know.

I’m particularly loving them with some cuffed jeans right now! A layering top and a little jacket and boom you’re ready to walk out the door. Easy, comfy, perfect for fall. What’s your fall shoe go-to? For more of my favorite comfy fall looks, check out my latest Pinterest board! xoxo

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Payless via Burst Media. The opinions and text are all mine.

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

Holiday Preview // DIY Plywood Christmas Tree

I know — you’re super confused because it’s not even Halloween yet! Believe me, I’m not trying to fast forward through fall. I just thought I’d put up a little…

I know — you’re super confused because it’s not even Halloween yet! Believe me, I’m not trying to fast forward through fall. I just thought I’d put up a little sneak peek of some Christmasy goodness that I worked on over the summer. Yeah, we get a jump on things around here sometimes. And truthfully, with a baby that’ll be about 4 weeks old at Christmas, I’ll be glad to have a head start!

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

I’ve spent so many Christmases in teeny tiny apartments, with hardly any room for a tree. Sometimes we shoved one in a corner, sometimes we just got a miniature tree and called it a day. But I wish I would have thought of this little space-saving holiday project years ago! We have a little more room in our home now, but I’m still planning on using this cool geometric tree in the kiddo’s room to decorate and spread some Christmas cheer!

Materials

  • ¼” thick plywood or MDF, cut to four feet by three feet (they’ll cut it for you at your local hardware store!)
  • ScotchBlueTM Painter’s Tape Multi Surfaces
  • Paint primer
  • Two shades of paint
  • Scissors
  • Craft knife
  • Yard stick
  • Paint roller
  • Paint roller tray
  • Drop cloth

Make Time: 2 Hours Plus Drying Time

Start by taping out your tree shape on the board. Measure how tall and wide you’d like it, and smooth on the ScotchBlueTM Painter’s Tape to outline the shape. Smooth the edges of the tape to ensure that no paint seeps underneath.

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

Roll on a coat of primer, being careful to stay inside the lines! Allow the primer to dry until it’s no longer tacky to the touch.

Next, roll on a coat of your first paint color. Be sure the paint is even and covers all of the primer. Allow this coat to dry as well.

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

Tape out your geometric design on the tree. For the stripes, we cut strips of the ScotchBlueTM Painter’s Tape in half longways so that they’d be thinner. Arrange the stripes on the tree, being careful to keep a consistent distance between each stripe.

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

tree7

Once the tape is all laid out, smooth down the edges of each stripe. Add your final coat of paint in the second color.

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

While this coat is still wet, carefully remove your tape. This is my favorite part! It’s like taking a cake out of the oven — you finally get to see the results of your work. Peel away slowly, being careful not to pull away any paint with the tape. But I have to say — the EdgeLock feature makes for the cleanest, neatest edges of any painter’s tape I’ve ever used! It’s this stuff or nothin’, I tell ya.

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

Stand back and admire your super-cool, space-saving Christmas tree! I’m going to string some twinkle lights around ours and have a few gifts there to keep it cozy. It’s such a fun, unexpected, modern twist on a classic! And the best part — when you’re done celebrating, you can tuck it away in the back of your closet for next year. For more ScotchBlue projects, check them out on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. xoxo

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

DIY Painted Plywood Christmas Tree

I am proud to be a 3M-sponsored blogger, and as part of my responsibilities, I get to evaluate 3M products. Opinions are my own and additional products to be used in the project were selected by me. 

Baby Stuff

Baby Stuff // 6

**Hey! Have you entered the Blog Birthday Giveaway yet? If you haven’t, bop on over here and enter to win $500 worth of fabby prizes from some truly creative people….

**Hey! Have you entered the Blog Birthday Giveaway yet? If you haven’t, bop on over here and enter to win $500 worth of fabby prizes from some truly creative people. Yeah!**

Baby Stuff

Holy crap, 10 more weeks sounds like zero time and what are we going to do with a kid?! Every once in a while it hits me like that. The rest of the time I mostly feel like we’ll just figure it out like everyone else does. But yikes. Ten weeks is no time, you guys.

One thing I’ve been marveling at lately — nobody, not one single person, has come up to me in public and tried to touch my stomach. I’ve heard so many horror stories of pregnant women being mauled by strangers wanting to rub their bellies, I fully prepared myself for having to deal with it. But nobody! Should I be offended? Just kidding, I should probably be entirely relieved. I mean, people that I’m close to will reach out for a pat but 9 times out of 10 they ask first, which I think is pretty cool of them. But so far I must have a Strangers Don’t Touch Me sign on my forehead or something. I’m good with that.

Other than that, we just keep getting bigger and less comfortable. I’ve still got my wedding rings on but at the end of the day they’re a leeeeetle snug. Ditto on my shoes. And I can still bend over and touch the floor, even if it is out of sheer will. Here’s more! xoxo

WEEK 30.

EATING Cinnamon Life Cereal for breakfast every morning and it is so. delicious.

DRINKING ice water all day long because we have a fridge with an ice makerrrrr!

READING more BabyWise. I got all freaked out the other day that I don’t know how to care for our as-of-yet nonexistant child so I scared myself back into reading it again.

WANTING my mobility back. That kid in my stomach is straight up in the way.

SLEEPING hahahahaha. Right.

WEARING heels because in my mind they make me look less like an egg. (Have we discussed my theory that I look like an egg when I’m pregnant?)

FEELING baby hiccups, pretty frequently. It’s kind of adorable and and also so totally weird that there is something alive inside you that has the hiccups.

LOVING when the baby reacts to Ryan’s voice.

P.S. See more Baby Stuff right here!

Maternity Style (With a Little Bonus)

I’ve been on the lookout for preggo clothes that a) will take me from summer to fall and b) won’t break the bank. The other day I was wandering around…

I’ve been on the lookout for preggo clothes that a) will take me from summer to fall and b) won’t break the bank. The other day I was wandering around in Target and came across this little chambray cutie in the maternity section. Being the bargain hunter that I am, I pulled out my phone and opened Target’s Cartwheel app to scan the tag and see if it was on sale. And lo and behold all of the maternity stuff I wanted was an extra 20% off with the app. I win. I love winning.

Do you guys know about Cartwheel? Ohhhh, it’s truly one of my favorite store apps. I feel like I need to spread the word about it. Just download and you can search items to see if your favorites have an extra little sale boost going on, with anywhere from 5%-30% off. And the Cartwheel price is on top of any sales that are already happening. Because I know that most of you darlings out there are like me and depend on Target like it’s air or water, I know you’ll always find something to save on. From yogurt to shampoo to shoes, you can always find something that you need and chances are lots of the stuff in your cart will be on the app as well.

For all of you fancy organized shoppers out there, check out your Cartwheel app before you head into the store and see if the items you need are there. If they are, just add them to your list and the savings will automatically tally for ya. I personally like to live on the edge and use the app to scan the barcodes of items I’m looking at to see if they’re on sale. If they are, add them as well. Then when you check out, you just have the cashier scan the code on your phone and BLAMO you save all the money at once. I saved about $16 on this here little outfit (plus a couple other pieces) and I was a happy camper. It’s so fun (kind of like a video game where the point is to save money) and so easy — my mom, who hates technology was like, “Soooo…. teach me how to do that.”

So long story short, I’m pretty sure you’ll be seeing me in this chambray shirt and legging combination pretty much until winter. Because basically all I want these days is to be comfortable and not look like I’m wearing a muumuu. Mission accomplished? We hope so.

For more Target goodness, check them out on Facebook, Twitter, and online. Thanks, Target! xoxo

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

Blog Birthday Giveaway

A Blog Birthday Giveaway!

UPDATE 9/30/14: A winner has been chosen and notified and the giveaway is now closed! So many thanks to all who entered and the shops who donated their time and…

Blog Birthday Giveaway

UPDATE 9/30/14: A winner has been chosen and notified and the giveaway is now closed! So many thanks to all who entered and the shops who donated their time and talent. Keep your eyes peeled for more giveaways during the holiday season!

Hey hey it’s our birthday! Sort of. It’s our blog birthday. Welllll, it’s our blog birth month. Lovely Indeed has officially been lovely-ing for four years, and I can hardly believe it. Time flies when you are buried in glitter and gold leaf all the time, right? Truly, though, I can’t believe it’s been four years, and I find myself grateful every day for the opportunity to come here and hang out with you all. And even more grateful that you come here and hang out with me.

So to celebrate, I rounded up a gang of some of the coolest creative brands around and each of them is providing something gorgeous for this righteous celebration of a giveaway! It’s a total package that’s worth $500, filled to the brim with fun pieces for you and your home. Read on to see what one of you lucky lovelies will win.

Blog Birthday Giveaway

Blog Birthday Giveaway

This geometric felt pillow from White Nest is so, so gorgeous — and even better in person.

Idieh Design‘s personalizable notebooks are perfect for planning and keeping your notes straight!

I can personally attest that this knotted headband from Wuthering Iris ups the cute factor of any outfit (and they make tiny sizes for little ones!).

When I saw this tote from August Ink, I knew one of you had to have it. Treat yo’ self!

Blog Birthday Giveaway

Centime has the most killer selection of personalizable jewelry, and they’re offering a $100 gift card so you can select whatever you like!

Blog Birthday Giveaway

I know you are all always on your hustle, and so does the gang at Between The Lines.

Blog Birthday GiveawayLove the bold stripe on these networking business cards from Jillianastasia! The winner will get a set personalized with their info.

Blog Birthday Giveaway

Start your day with some inspiration on your coffee cup! Between The Lines wants you to make it happen.

Loving Lindsey Crafter‘s color theory pompom bracelets  — the mix of colors and textures is so fun.

These gold moon phase cocktail glasses from Sarah Jane Design would look so perfect on your bar cart!

Vintage Marquee Lights‘ 12″ ampersand light is totally killer! Light it up and put it somewhere special.

So gang, that’s the booty that’s up for grabs! Each of these creatives has been so generous and so cool to work with — be sure to take some time to check out their sites and see what else they do. And in the meantime, I know you’re wondering how you can win this crazy prize package! Check out the Rafflecopter below for a whole bunch of ways to enter, and do ’em all if you like! The more you enter, the better your chances of winning. This giveaway is open to U.S. Residents only; giveaway will be open for one week and we’ll notify the winner personally.

Thank you again to you all for a fab four years! Happy entering! xoxo

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Fall Style

Is It Fall Yet?

I always jump the gun on fall. Especially the clothes. I love summer, but by the end of it I’m always ready to move on to the next season. I…

I always jump the gun on fall. Especially the clothes. I love summer, but by the end of it I’m always ready to move on to the next season. I remember one particular first day of school in 5th or 6th grade, I was so pumped to wear this new fall outfit. My mom helped me order it from the J.C. Penney catalog, and it was a purple print turtleneck with a purple knit cardigan that went over it. And I reallllly wanted to wear it, and I did, and I roasted all day long. But I loved that outfit.

I still do the same thing, and I pull my sweaters out way too early. But I don’t care. This year, I’m relying on maternity jeans and loose comfy sweaters with lots of accessories to trick everybody into thinking I don’t look like a house. I’ve been eyeing this yellow sweater (my tastes haven’t changed much since elementary school, apparently) for a few weeks and wouldn’t you know it, it’s out of stock now. Dangit! Should have jumped on that when I had the chance. But in the meantime, here are a few of my fall faves.

Fall Style

Sweater. Watch. Cat ring. Bag. Gold bangle. Burgundy polish. Grey polish. Sunnies. Clogs. Flats.

Ahhhh it’s all so good. Don’t you just love to switch gears in the fall? For some reason one of the things I most look forward to is leaving behind all the bright crazy nail polish colors and going for something either so dark it’s almost black, or a barely-there neutral. And that little cat ring would look pretty killer on some digits with a fresh manicure.

And okay, okay, I know the watch is a pipe dream (I usually only share things here that I would actually spend the money to buy), but it was too pretty to leave out. So while I won’t be owning it any time soon, I’m on the lookout for a similar mens-inspired leather watch to rock out this fall.

What’s your fave? Do you look forward to a little fall style refresh? Or do you hang onto summer for dear life? xoxo

P.S. Apparently I always do this.

House Moving

This Week // 33

And now, for your viewing pleasure, a never before seen photo of the total chaos that is our new house! That there room is allegedly the office. Or will be…

And now, for your viewing pleasure, a never before seen photo of the total chaos that is our new house!

House Moving

That there room is allegedly the office. Or will be someday soon, as soon as all of the office-type things are out of those boxes. I don’t care that it’s in a shambles. It’s ours and it’s a mess and I love it. We spent our first night in the house last night, so we are finally in the same place as all of our belongings and our very own bed, which is a feat in and of itself. There’s a mountain of work ahead of us, but I’m so excited to tackle it and get the place ready so we can settle in and wait for the little guy to get here. Follow along on Instagram for more house updates — the place has its own hashtag now, y’all. Check out #alovelyhomeindeed (and thanks to Kelly for the hashtag inspiration!).

This weekend my sweet sister is throwing me a baby shower, so I’ll be crossing my fingers that I still fit into the only appropriate dress I own for the occasion! Have you ever had a shower thrown for you? I always get so overwhelmed and shy — it just totally blows my mind that all of these people are willing to come together and help you set off on the next stage of life. It feels so overwhelmingly kind, ya know? And I feel so bashful about it all, I kind of get squirmy with all that attention and present opening and fussing. But it’s just so heartwarming and I’m so grateful for the people who are helping Baby Foy get a head start.

Whatever you’re up to this weekend, hope it’s a beautiful one! xoxo

This Week’s Faves

I want to make one of these for every room in the house.
If I didn’t already have the barcart of my dreams, I’d be all over this one.
Pretty sure if I got this I’d wear it on the daily this fall.
And these have no calories, right? So I can eat all of them?

More Lovely

You gotta make this for your kid… or yourself. College!
Can’t sleep. Bah.
Been thinking lots about the chemicals we have around the house, because of the little one!
Mr. Lovely’s world-famous Trader Joe’s pizza.
Get a jump on Halloween, ya weenies!

Married Life // Getting Ready for Baby

I mean, is there such a thing as being “ready” for a baby? I’m starting to think not. You can pick the name, put together the crib (or watch your…

readyforbaby

I mean, is there such a thing as being “ready” for a baby? I’m starting to think not. You can pick the name, put together the crib (or watch your husband put together the crib), and paint the walls, but I don’t feel like any of that means you’re ready. But still, we’re trying to “ready” ourselves as much as we possibly can.

I guess in our heads, being ready means being educated but not crazed. Yeah, we’ve read a few books. And we’ve scheduled all of our classes so we know which end of the kid to stick the diaper on and which end to feed. And the nursery is on its way to not being a shambles. But other than that, I think we’re both mentally preparing ourselves for… um, anything. It seems like we’ve had an unspoken agreement all along that we, together, will be ready to tackle whatever changes the kiddo brings. Maybe he’ll be a great sleeper or maybe we will be up every night for the next six months. We’re ready. Maybe breastfeeding will be a breeze or maybe it’ll be a nightmare. We’re ready. Who knows? But I think the thing is, I’m feeling ready because Mr. Lovely and I are heading into parenthood with the same vibe. Basically, let’s do this — together.

I keep reading and hearing everywhere that the best thing you can do to raise a child is keep your marriage strong, secure, and on the top of your priority list. It really makes sense to me. We were the team before the kid and we’ll be the team after the kid. I think it can get to be a bit of a touchy subject, but I understand it when I hear husbands and wives say that they try to put their marriage first and their children an immediate second. Even in these pre-parenting days, I feel like it’s been so important to have the husb by my side, at doctor appointments, choosing baby stuff, making decisions. It’s a comfort and helps me feel like I have a teammate in all of it.

What’s your take? Do you think it’s out of line to prioritize a marriage over a child? Do you think they go hand in hand? Is it even possible to keep your marriage a priority in the midst of raising babies? xoxo

Moving Day Essentials

How to Move Like a Pro // Essentials

Between the two of us combined, Ryan and I have moved a total of 12 times since we graduated college. Some of them were just a few blocks away, like…

Moving Day Essentials

Between the two of us combined, Ryan and I have moved a total of 12 times since we graduated college. Some of them were just a few blocks away, like when we moved from 184th to 181st in NYC. And some of them were across state lines (or across the country… twice). Suffice it to say we have nailed down our moving system and refined it pretty well. For this last move, I gotta say I was pretty impressed with us — we had a list of essentials that we kept out until the very end, packed all in one box, and tossed in the back of the car. It was perfect. Even on our last day in the house, with all of our belongings packed and in a truck, we were comfy and had everything we need. When we arrived at our new spot, this box was the first to come with us to give us a head start in the new place. If you’ve got a move coming, here’s our list of essentials.

Personal Items. This one kind of covers anything you’d put in your suitcase — a few sets of clothes, your toiletries, any meds, and the like. Think of it like you’re packing a weekend bag.

Moving Day Essentials

Tech. This is always a major one for us because our jobs basically revolve around having access to the internet! We always hold on to our router for as long as possible, or in this latest case, borrow internet for a couple of days from a nice neighbor. Also be sure you have a charger for every device you have, and some music or movies loaded and handy.

Bedding. Make yourself comfy, y’all! We spent our last night on a big ol’ air mattress with our own sheets and pillows. It helps a bunch to get a good nights’ sleep. And then you have your sheets handy when you move into the new place.

Tissues. Crucial! Tissues can serve a million purposes in your final days when things are packed! They’re towels, napkins, toilet paper, and obviously useful when you shed a tear or two because you’re stressed out that not all of your stuff is going to make it to the new town. The Puffs SoftPack is perfect for moving because it’s a full-sized pack of tissues but the packaging is soft so you can shove it anywhere! Stuff it in a box, in your bag, in a suitcase, or in your glove box, and it’s all good. These are now my go-to tissues for travel. I’ve got packages stuffed everywhere (and they’re cute too).

Moving Day Essentials

Cleaner. We keep out one all-purpose bottle of cleaner to give the house one final wipe-down after all of the boxes are gone. The best kind is the spray-on/wipe-off, so you don’t have to rinse. Just spritz everything and use your Puffs tissues to wipe down so the house is fresh and clean. (Particularly good for apartments, when you’re trying to get a cleaning deposit back!)

Disposable Plates & Utensils. We had our kitchen packed up about three days before we moved, but didn’t want to eat out for every meal. So we set aside one frying pan and a bunch of disposable plates and ate homecooked meals all week. Easy peasy.

Snacks. Duh. This pregnant girl gets cranky if there’s not a sensible granola bar around for an afternoon snack.

What about you? Are you a moving pro? I gotta say, the storage room with all of our stuff in it stacked in boxes makes me super glad we have our essentials handy. I’d love to know how you tackle the final few days in an old place and the first few in a new place. What are your essentials? xoxo

This post was brought to you by the makers of Puffs® facial tissues. I received compensation to write this post through the Puffs® SoftPack™ program. All opinions expressed are my own.