Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Falling (Back) in Love with Legos and a Lego Storage Round-Up!

No doubt about it, my most popular post of all time is my Lego Storage and Play Table, an Ikea hack I did more than three years ago:

I think this project has struck a chord with people because it encourages creativity in children but protects mom's sanity.  My table is easy to build, adjustable in height, and provides ample storage.  However, it has been three years so Legos have now taken over the train table, among other surfaces! And as a result I was starting to fall out of love--just a little bit!--with Legos.

However, I was reminded of the benefits of Legos the other day through the website Brick Dave, a blog dedicated completely to Lego.

It's so true: playing with Legos has created so many opportunities for creativity, persistence and patience for my boys.  What I find especially interesting is how their personalities shine through in the ways they play: Biggest Boy methodically follows all instructions, enjoying the process of building; Littlest prefers to get wacky and build his own amazing creations.  Either way, I love to see them playing with Legos.

So I've rounded up a few storage options for Legos (as well as renewed energy for tackling the mess once again)!  We love our Lego Head Storage (affiliate link), but I really need options for storing those partly-built and oddly-shaped creations.

How cute are these DIY buckets from Chubby Bunny?  I love these because they would fit partially assembled sets along with their accompanying loose pieces:

I'd love to be handy enough to build these under-bed storage trays from the happy housie:

Another great solution for sets that might be partly disassembled (you know, because someone's football or entire body landed on them)...huge fabric bins!  This tutorial by The Scrap Shoppe has me convinced I can make some:


Of course the sky's the limit when it comes to how to organize Legos!  You can see more ideas on my Lego Pinterest Board.

Or share with us here...what methods have worked for you?  Do tell!

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Monday, January 16, 2017

Get Inspired for Winter Decorating (with sources to help!)

This post contains affiliate links but all opinions are always 100% mine!

January is maybe my favorite month for decorating my home.  I just adore taking down the Christmas decorations and paring down to a simpler, cleaner look.  Plus I love decorating with cozy in mind, and by the growing popularity of hygge here in the States, so do most of us!
So I thought today I would share why I love winter decorating and how I accomplish it easily.  (Well, fairly easily once all those Christmas boxes are stashed away).

1. Clean + Simple
This is major.  After the influx of stuff that Christmas invariably causes, I really need at least some of the spaces in my home to be clutter-free.  For me, that usually starts with the kitchen because it is where I spend a lot of time.

Ooh!  Update alert!  Right before Christmas we installed the CB2 Firefly Pendant Light above the island...more on this soon!

For now, partly-built Lego sets litter the dining room table, but (deep breath) that's okay because in the kitchen I am trying to be intentional about picking up the piles and keeping the table and counters clear.  That said, I have also brought flowers back to my kitchen table, but only in white and green.


Simple, wintry, pretty.

2. Falling Slowly
As I mentioned, I love getting those Christmas boxes back in the attic.  However, over the years I have also introduced more Christmas decor that can also be used all winter long.  My mantel is the best example of this--the only change I made is removing Rudy's red nose!

I still have my starry string lights burning each evening and it feels perfectly appropriate on dark and cold January nights.

I also have left evergreen accents up on the coffee-table tray and in the powder room, where they accompany my seasonless cotton stems and can just be removed come spring.

3. Two Words: Candles and Fur (or, Faux Fur)
For me, candles are essential for preventing a serious case of Seasonal Affective Disorder.  We burn fires occasionally but candles every day.  Notice that little jar candle from Grove in the powder room?

I'm in love with it; the Fir, Cedar + Spice scent is heavenly and it's perfectly sized for a small room.

I also keep candles burning on the coffee table and accent table in the living room.  The coffee table tray is exactly as it has been since December 1st (see above: Falling Slowly).

Finally, layers of textiles including throw blankets.  I'm telling you, my faux fur throw blanket is my best friend in winter.  Perfect for draping over a couch or cozy sectional like these from Arhaus (I'm in love with the leather one!  What do y'all think of it for my living room?)

Note the velour blanket protecting my couch cushions, because:


I told Hubs the other day that the only sad thing about my fur blanket is that I can't take it everywhere. Every winter activity, from movie night to reading a book, is better with a faux fur throw.  I got mine years ago but you can find a similar one here or here.  In fact, I'm currently coveting this one from Arhaus like crazy:

And faux fur is great on pillows too!  Believe it or not, I got that little white one at the Target dollar spot in December, but there are tons of different styles available out there.  I'm again loving the luxurious ones at Arhaus (on sale right now, too!) or for the budget-minded you can go here.

That's it: three simple steps to cozy, wintry decorating.  What are your best tips for winter decorating? I'd love to hear them!
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