Dude, we’re building a house.

Eventually, there will be a house there.

Eventually, there will be a house there.


Well, hello there. Long time no see. We’re now proud Massachusetts residents and holders of full time jobs. Love stimulating that economy, baby. Since moving last summer, we’ve inhabited a small apartment and harbored BIG dreams. We want to build a house. Yeah. I can’t believe it either. But, it’s just SO. COOL.

I started to get the itch to start blogging again mostly for diary purposes. I had absolutely no idea how truly clueless I am when it came to figuring out how to make a house happen and figured I should document the process so I can look back and laugh (just kidding, kinda). Also, I want to share with my family (especially gramps [Hi, gramps!]) down in Florida what goes on with regards to this huge life project. They are invaluable resources in terms of opinions, but sometimes it’s hard to explain every situation in sufficient detail to 4 different people. Enter the interweb, gotta love it!

So a little background. Mike’s parents own a large piece of land (11.37 acres) here in Massachusetts, and about a year and a half ago they started to look into selling it. That’s when Mike and I had a serious convo about where we saw ourselves in the future and decided this land was it. It’s got a stream running through it and a bubbling spring. AND, it’s on the end of a quiet cul-de-sac, which means almost no people. Seclusion is a priority for us (I mean, we’re not hermits, but we don’t want to hear cars on the street or see people out our window, well, ever, but only occasionally will do.) We decided that we want to make it our homestead for now and always (barring any unforeseen circumstances, obviously. We’re not that oblivious). This was when we were still living in Pennsylvania and the plan has been growing since then.

First we had to figure out if we could move our lives 5 states away, and once we realized this was a possibility, we had to talk to the in-laws to see if they were willing to work with us. Like I said, this was a year and a half ago and neither of us had any firm evidence we could actually make this happen. Being the amazing people they are, they agreed to wait until we were ready. Fast forward a year, and we were inching closer. The blog will pick up at that point, when we figured out what to ask at the bank, how the sequence of events should NOT go, and much more, including our ongoing doubts of whether this is actually even feasible. But, I want to document it for old time’s sake (Diary style. This will in no way be a guide, but rather an account of our story.) And for the family’s input. And, for fun! So, here we go. Dude, we’re building a house.

Spring is the Season of Change, Right?

Well, hello there! Long time no type; since January 7th to be exact. Over 2 months! Well, I can’t say I have a totally great reason for the blogging lapse, but I can say that today I can finally talk about the reason why I’ve been so reclusive. (No, Mom, I’m not pregnant :) )

Drumroll please…we are moving back to Massachusetts!!! This has been in the works for a. long. time. We’ve been scheming this move at least for the last 2 years, but way back when it was definitely more of a goal than a plan. And, now, it’s all happening. I’ve been so secretive mostly because Mike had to work things out with his job, but now it’s all out in the open and we are ECSTATIC. And I can finally breathe. Seriously, I can’t even tell you how many  times I almost blew up our spot. Ugh, I am the worst liar.

So, a few details- as you may or may not know, I’m graduating in May and am actively seeking a job in Massachusetts. The good thing about graduating now is that whether I’m looking for a job in PA or MA, my odds are about the same. As for Mike, there will be some extra hard work needed on his part, but he is going to be able to stay at the company he loves and feels so deeply committed to. Win-win!  We are moving back to Mass mostly because we love it there. We both feel that unmistakeable, but impossible-to-articulate tie to New England that is only conjured when you think of home. It’s as simple as that. Of course, the friends and family are a pretty darn huge benefit, as well ;). After all, we are at the age of thinking about kids and our future in that context, and it’s become apparent that for both of us to feel comfortable moving to that next step we need a support system nearby. And, I must fully disclose here, that the idea of being home permanently is so insanely appealing, I can’t even tell you.

I guess the blog absence is due mostly to the dishonesty I would have to write with if I kept it up. Like I said, we’ve been thinking of this move for years, but it became real near the end of last year when we decided I would look for jobs exclusively up north rather than here in PA. As a result, we’ve not only been saving money as much as possible to help with the move, but every project I’ve wanted to tackle is clouded with the question of, “Will this go with the feel of our next place?” As a result, I’ve been at a virtual standstill DIY-wise. I’ll be the first one to tell you that it doesn’t feel good, and it’s been a struggle to see things I want to do but then talk myself out of them.

So, I guess that’s where I’ll leave you for now. We are making moves, and are truly embracing this Spring as a season of change. I definitely want to share/document this big transition in our lives on this here blog, so keep a look out for updates. I’m not yet sure of a posting schedule, but as our plan details are worked out, I’ll be sure to share.

Ooof, it feels good to finally be out in the open! What are you changing this Spring??

A Textured Home

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how to create a cohesive, welcoming, and ‘us’ home. Our ‘adult’ home, if you will. I guess because the prospect of actually owning a house is on the horizon, these kinds of things are starting to creep in my mind. In order to somewhat sate my desire to actually do, I created this simple mood board of the the most basic of materials I would ideally use as the base in my current dream home. I feel like they’re classic, warm, and lend themselves well to various pops of color that could be used to distinguish rooms.

Home Mood Board


What do you think? Calming and inviting, right? I do think my taste is starting to mature…

A Year of Blogging!

Holy cow, it’s been a year since I started this here blog! Can you believe it?? Obviously, I’ve had some ebbs and flows in terms of posting, but overall, I’m kinda impressed with myself that I’m still here and I still think about this corner of the internet daily. Chalk that up as a success!

Looking back, here are a few of my favorite posts from 2012:

1. Rope Shelves – So good looking and so functional. Love ‘em!
Rope Shelves

2. Scarf Rack – Reusing the ladder from our place card display at our wedding has worked out wonderfully.

Scarfs on Ladder

3. Shelves in the craft box – Just look at that after, how can you not love it??

craftbefore and after

4. Spice rack – Functional repurposing! Booya!

4. Fold-away Ironing Board – Use this every work day!

DIY Ironing Board 16

6. Fixed-up mirror – also used every single work day!

Mirror Re-Do  2

7. The desk I built – Functional and handmade, I’m still proud of it!

finished desk!


So, with that, thank you all from the bottom of my DIY heart for reading Folksy Home. It’s nice to know that my typed words aren’t just completely lost into the internet ether. I appreciate all of you and wish you nothing but the best in 2013. Happy New Year! xoxoxo

A Christmas Collection

I’m not a collector. But, of course, when it comes to Christmas, all bets are off. My coffee mug collection is one of my favorite things about the holiday season- I love that every morning my cup of joe has a tinge of Christmas cheer. So festive! I get to pick from this happy cupboard every morning.

target christmas mugs 1

And here they are all lined up:

christmas mugs

(Thank you, iPhone panorama function for that photo) All my mugs are from Target; they come out with different ones each year and they’re dated on the bottom, which I love. For about $5 a piece, and a lifetime of enjoyment, how can you beat it? Depending on the collection, I’ll buy one or more. The oldest one is from 2006 (the snowman fourth from the right) and here is the one from this year:

target santa mug

How cute is that hat?? Not exactly practical, so I only bought one this year, but still…it’s Santa…with a hat…in the shape of a mug. How can you not love it??

Do you have any holiday collections?

Christmas Gourds

Doesn’t it pain you to throw perfectly good gourds and pumpkins into the compost just because Thanksgiving has passed? Uh, I hate that! I had some good gourds (that’s what he said ;) ) laying around after the fall decorating season this year, and just couldn’t bear to chuck them yet. Thankfully, some paint came to the rescue and made them Christmas-season acceptable. I did two different sets. The first was the little bitty guys that were adorning the nooks and crannies.

Christmas Gourds 8

This is clearly not rocket science. A little acrylic paint, some brushes and a cup of warm tea and you’re in business. After one coat, they looked like this:

Christmas Gourds 6

About 4 more coats and a sprinkle of silver glitter and I had these:

Christmas Gourds 5

Christmas Gourds 7

Christmas Gourds 4

They totally season-ify my desk and are fun to look at while procrastinating :). The other set of painted gourds? Well, they didn’t come out exactly as planned. I started with these guys:

Christmas Gourds 2

Primed them…

Christmas Gourds 3

And sprayed each a different Christmas-season color I had laying around.

Christmas Gourds 1

The painting part worked, but when I stacked them back up into the pump-cairn, well…they kind of looked more Italian flag than fa la la la la.

Christmas Gourds 9

They’re not totally offensive, so they’re staying. Maybe next year I’ll do ‘em all up in the same color. As I say all too often, get ‘em next time!

Counting Down to Christmas: DIY Advent Calendar

I think it’s been established that I love the holidays.  (Seen my Instagram lately?) So, I guess it comes as no surprise that I like counting down to Christmas. My favorite way to do that? An advent calendar, of course. Last year I got tired of buying the flimsy cardboard ones, so I made my own. This was pre-blogging, so there aren’t many pics, but I’ll try my best to explain the embarrasingly simple process. I bet you could about figure it out by looking at it. Check it:

DIY Advent Calendar 3

Yep, just a 2×6, some spray painted clothespins, and labeled manila tags. I told you it was simple. After spraying the wood white, 24 of the pins red and 1 yellow (I took them apart before spraying because I wanted the spring part to stay metallic color), I hot glued on the clothespins. I eyed the spacing, and let the length of my scrap wood dictate how far apart they went.

DIY Advent Calendar 2

I painted on the header by following a print out I made and glued on some tiny pinecones I had. Then, I printed out the back page of the advent calendar  featured here (the printable doesn’t seem to be available anymore! bah! Any clip art, or even hand drawings would work, though.) and cut out the shapes. Those got glued to the back of manila tags I had left over from wedding crafts, and then each got numbered. The big day got a big tag for good measure.

DIY Advent  Calendar 1

The tags get hung up in random order so that every day Mike and I can play the advent game. We both stand with our backs to the calendar, count to three and turn around. The first one to find the tag with the date on it gets to peek at the little drawing first. We always make a big deal of how cool the one we got is, making the other person totally jealous, haha. It’s fun, I swear!

So, have you made an advent calendar?

Giving thanks today.

Hope your day is full of parades, dog shows, and most of all, smiles.

From Trash to Treasure: Mirror Edition

Hey guys! So, as you may know, I’m trying my hand at no-cost crafts/projects/everything in an effort to busy idle hands while we’re seriously saving for a house. One thing that helps me keep that little promise to myself? Side-of-the-road finds!

Now, I absolutely looooove checking out other people’s trash. Wait…that came out wrong. Hmm, put it this way: I’m not scared to take a second look at someone’s trash pile if it looks like there’s anything remotely salvageable. And just last week my dirty little habit paid off in the form of this pretty little mirror:

We have a ‘no shoe’ policy in our house, so I rarely get to take a look at my outfit with shoes on. So, when I saw this mirror, I envisioned hanging it in the mudroom so I’d  finally be able to see how ridiculous my socks with crocs looked before heading out to walk the dog. Yeah, that happens more often than I’d like to admit. The mirror was originally tacked on to a dresser, so I Mike hung it the same way we did here, and then it was up to me to clean ‘er up.

When I found it, it did have lots of sticker residue on both the wood and mirror, but a little rubbing with Dawn dish soap and warm water and it was all but gone. I’d have taken pics, but it was night and the lighting was baaaad. The next morning, when I could see better, I broke out the Murphy’s Oil Soap and wiped it down. Then, I used some Feed ‘N Wax. See, it was looking a little dull:

And then with the wax, it was looking fresher and fresher.

Woop, all done!

And now I’ve given myself another chance to actively ignore my less than stellar fashion choices. Sometimes you’ve gotta accept the things you cannot change.

Happy Monday!

Chalkboard Labels for my Spice Jars

Remember the spice rack I fashioned a looooong while back?

Made of blueberry crates. Well, not too long after, I purchased some spice jars so we’d have a uniform look. Well, the spice jars ended up not having a standard top size, so there weren’t any straining lids (the ones with the holes in them to sieve out the spice) available. Boo. I called to return them, but the guy said he’d give me a credit and to just keep ‘em. Don’t mind if I do. So, after having them sit in the mudroom for weeks, I had an epiphany one day when pouring myself a cocktail. What if the plastic inserts in the booze bottle fit in my spice jars?!?! And. They. Did. Cue the angels singing. So began my quest to raid every recycling bin on the block. I know, I’m that crazy lady going through your trash. But hey, check my spice bottles!

And those labels? Well, they’re just cut-to-size chalkboard paint contact paper and a little rounded edge punch for effect. Cute right?


And the best part, the labels are totally customizable in case of turnover. Score!