Beach House Added to “The List”

This past spring, and most of the summer, has been all about landscaping and unfinished house projects. After a year of non-stop renovating it’s no surprise I’m feeling a little burned out. I was perusing the Young House Love blog (its awesome, check it out) and came across their post DIYing vs. Living In Your Home & Enjoying It. It was a good reminder that renovations don’t happen overnight, and sometimes you need to step back and take a break. A vacation was in order! I headed to Ocean City, Maryland for a few days of relaxation.

Does anyone else have a “vacation list?” I’m not referring to places you want to visit, but AFTER you come back, you have a list of things you want pertaining to said vacation. Usually this list is filled with terrible ideas that are financially unattainable.

After college I went to France and came back obsessed with buying a vespa. Turns out vespas are expensive, plus I live in Baltimore City so it probably would have been stolen within a week.

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I spent two weeks in Italy and had to have an espresso machine. Why? Who knows?! At the time I didn’t even drink coffee that much.

Earlier this year I spent three days in Deep Creek, Maryland and a chic cabin was added to the list. I think a rustic weekend getaway is a necessity, don’t you?

BTW, please feel free to share your vacation list…hopefully its as absurd and ridiculous as mine!

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After a week in Ocean City I’m adding beach house to “the list.” The condo I was staying at was within walking distance to Fenwick, Delaware and I would walk around the neighborhood several times a day. I had convinced myself (but apparently not my scale) that walking was enough to work off the Ocean City essentials…Thrasher’s fries, Dumser’s Ice cream, and Fisher’s Popcorn. So I would walk and drool over the beachfront houses.

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My favorite houses though were the tiny run down bungalows that would pop up every couple of blocks. These were more in my price range (HAHAHA!) and I would mentally fix up each and every one.

Clearly, it would need a new roof. What if the exterior was painted a gorgeous navy with white trim! Window boxes! Of course, it would look dreadful without them.

LOL, if only it was that easy…and also my reality.

In addition to planning my future beachfront development business, I sat on the beach and read a few books, which I’m embarrassed to say has been rare since I got cable and internet. I especially enjoyed Mary Kay Andrews’ Fixer Upper, a book “about one woman’s quest to redo an old house..”

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I felt like I was reading about my own renovation, except this one was funny and stress free. The main character, Dempsey Jo Killebrew even inherited hundreds of National Geographic magazines. If you’re looking for an entertaining beach read and like DIY this book is for you. I liked it so much I also read a few of her other books featuring Weezie Foley and BeBe Loundermilk, a Savannah antique dealer and her best friend. These characters have a whole series and are entertaining reads. I tend to fall into a rut of chick lit and political thriller novels, so please share if you have any good book recommendations!

I’m back in town and vacation is officially over. I’m happy and relieved to report that landscaping is almost complete! Garden post coming soon!

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DIY Botanical Print Wall Decor

This spring I’m seeing a lot of botanical designs, mostly as vintage inspired wall art. I love this trend as it adds pops of color to any room. Plus, I’m a sucker for anything vintage.etsy gnosispicturearchive

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hgtv photo by rachel whyte

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I decided to use this as inspiration for my own decor. Digging through the boxes of books I acquired with the house I discovered the Golden Nature Guide to Familiar American Wildflowers, published in 1950. The illustrations were perfect to create my own botanical wall décor.

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My kitchen nook has a very large plain white wall, and for months I had been debating what to put there. The colors in the botanical prints would pop against the white walls, but it is also a nice transition from the kitchen nook to the garden.

First, I did a little research to make sure I wasn’t ripping apart a rare or valuable book. Next, using a craft knife I cut away the binding to loosen and pull out the pages. I decided to group the prints together by color, and picked out my favorite blue, pink, and yellow/orange prints. I put them in black float frames purchased at Michael’s.

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I went back and forth if I should keep the descriptions of the flowers at the bottom of the page, or cut them off and just display the flower print. I decided to keep the descriptions for now. I kind of like that you can tell that the prints came from a guide book.

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The great thing about this is that I have hundreds of flowers prints leftover and with these frames I can switch out the prints anytime I feel like a change.