Monday, March 7, 2011

Back with blog love for A Thoughtful Place!

So, this is my first full year teaching in my current school, and I love it. I love my kiddos, I love my subject (math rocks!), and I love my colleagues. However, the school is a 35 minute drive from home (without traffic), and I don't know what it is about the 35ish mile distance from me, but I feel like it must be a different country with *drumroll* different germs?? I have been sick SO OFTEN this year! And while I've yet to miss any days from sickness (cue the triumphant music), on Thursday I thought I was going to die. I didn't take my temp in the morning b/c... well, I didn't want to know. I managed to make it through the day (I honestly remember very little), and after arriving home, I took my temp to see it was 102 (and it continued climbing for a few hours)!! I knew I needed some rest and some Tylenol, and on Friday, I missed my first day. I felt INCREDIBLY guilty the entire day (my school does not hire substitutes as we are a small network of charter schools with an equally small budget), knowing my colleagues were having to cover for me. I tried to remind myself that I regularly volunteer to cover for others, but I don't know, I love to guilt myself, what can I say??

This is also the second year I've been sick in the days leading up to Eric's birthday (BAD timing), so I feel double awful. Thursday was also the first weekday since December that I haven't posted a blog entry (TRIPLE sadness!). And since Eric was too smart and took the car to work (he normally rides his bike and he KNEW I'd sneak back to work to put in at least an afternoon's worth of teaching), I was forced to stay home and do what was good for me... rest.

And what was I going to do with all that time??? CLEAN was my first thought... but Eric would kill me if he knew I didn't rest. Grocery SHOP was my second thought... but Eric has the car. WORK on my quarter grades (fast approaching!) on which I did spend a significant amount of time. And lastly, peruse GORGEOUS BLOGS for inspiration! Which was what occupied most of my morning (with intermittent sleeping and temperature monitoring in between). While oogling some of my favorite blogs, I came across a new one that I am TOTALLY in love with!

Meet Courtney's blog, A Thoughtful Place. I spent most of Friday morning blog stalking her (i.e. reading every post she's done since she began her blog last September), and I am SO stealing many of her ideas for our home!! She seems to have a total handle on the whole "mommy thing" which makes my head swim just thinking about it! And she features pictures of design transformations in her home in almost every post (a personal and yet unfulfilled goal of mine!). She is brilliant, and has such a sense of "real life" in her posting. She knows most everyone can't afford to spend $3000 on a closet overhaul, so she puts her genius to work and redesigns her closet for less than $300!! I admit, I'm crushing on her genius, and her dedication to beautifying her family's space.

Visit her blog here. Do it now, you won't be sorry!

See one of my favorite posts here.

And here are just a few of the amazing pics of HER HOME she's featured on her blog (these aren't me, people, they're all Courtney!!).

These are the stripes she painted on her bedroom wall, using the same paint color in a different finish. Subtle, and perfect for a bedroom. Read about it here.

This was her set-up for her mantle during holiday time. I wish beyond wishing I had a fireplace and a chic mantle to go with it! Read about this and some more of her holiday decorations here.

She MADE this chevron table runner from a paint drop-cloth and metallic spray paint. I WILL be making this SOON, and in many colors (OMG, navy, here I come!!). Read the uber-easy tutorial here.

She had her kitchen remodeled and used the beveled-edge subway tile that I am absolutely head-over-heels IN LOVE with. I'm also beyond jealous of that pass through window she has just to the left of her sink. Read about the kitchen transformation here.

She also completed this inspiring DIY striped drape project that I must copy, if I can figure out how to make it work for my GIANT window without finding an over-sized, and inevitably $$$ fabric (my window is almost 90" long... perhaps 2 panels of stripes on each side? Would it be stripe overload?). Read her tutorial here.

I am completely inspired by how many projects she is able to complete and how gorgeous they all turn out! I think I've been hesitant to post my own before and after pics because of the age of our home, and it's difficulties (we bought for the neighborhood, and the house just happened to be here). I can't make my house look nearly as chic as others homes without MAJOR remodeling (read: knocking down walls, and ripping off siding, etc.). Is this how everyone feels, I wonder?? That being said, I've already completed 1 giant remodel and 2 mini-remodels around out home since we've been here. So I promise, as soon as my kitchen, family and living rooms are clean, I'll post the before and after pics of all three rooms. They've undergone quite the transformation since this was a house where 6 college boys lived!

Thanks for the inspiration, Courtney! It's time to start cleaning so I can post the pictures... Happy Monday, everyone!

P. S. Did a little re-design on the blog this weekend (just like my home, I can't leave it alone!).  Hope you like it!


  1. April! I am so honored. You are much too kind. Thanks for making my morning. And I love the new re-design on the blog. Happy Monday!

  2. Great choice in highlighting Courtney...she's a true gem!

  3. Courtney is great :) and yes I think we all feel a little house envy - no matter how nice and wonderful or put together your house might be, someone always has something cute you want or something cool you wish you did! I say post away, I am sure we will be just as inspired by your house and your updates! :)