If you want to hear God laugh, tell Him your plans....

I had plans, blogpost ideas, and photos waiting to be edited to share with y'all. I was going to share a fall home tour, since its been a year since I did that last one! But those plans all came crashing down Friday morning. My sweet Grandmother passed away on Friday morning. 

Thankfully, I was able to see her Thursday evening. She had a double infection and had been in the hospital, but she had been doing better and had been moved to a rehab facility on Thursday afternoon to start getting her strength back to head home. I went to visit her Thursday, she was herself! She was laughing and talking about the things we used to do together. 

As I left to head home Thursday night, Already There by Casting Crowns came on. As I stopped singing and truly listened to the chorus, God spoke to me in that moment and told me that was the last time I would see her. I didn't expect to get the call Friday morning that she had passed away, but The Lord granted me a peace that passed all understanding as my dad told me the news.

To You my future is a memory
Cause You're already there
You're already there
Standing at the end of my life
Waiting on the other side
And You're already there
You're already there

As I sat outside on the porch reading my Bible, I remembered the book of God's Promises that my parents had been gifted when they were first married. I opened it and began reading and pouring my heart out to the Lord. I am going to miss my grandmother more than words could ever express, but I rejoice in knowing that I will see her again one day. 

Call the relative on your list, hug your best friend, tell your parents you love them because you never know when your time will be over with them.

Goals for Fall 2015

Well, it is official, today is the first day of Fall 2015! I am so glad that fall is finally here. I loathe heat, and yes I know I really live in the wrong state for that!

I compiled a list of items that I wanted to accomplish this fall. Some of these are the typical everyone is doing fall items, but I am really looking forward to tackling the outdoor table project! 

After tearing down our old fence, I saw potential in the wood and I couldn't just toss it or burn it all. We bought a glass top table at the end of summer 2013, but I have always wanted a large wooden outdoor table (think Joanna Gaines farm table style). Since we have 80% of what we would need to build it laying in the yard I thought why not reuse it and add character and a good story to our home~

We go to a local corn maze each year and we thought that they had closed, but we are thrilled that they are going to be open again this year!

This photo completely embodies fall in Coastal Florida! Palm tress and pumpkins. 

For all the details on this trip to the Amazing Grace crop maze you can head here.

Have y'all made any goals for this fall, or goals for the end of 2105? I would love to hear about them!

Front Porch Update

It has been almost 4 years since we bought Our Magnolia Home and for 4 years I have been trying to find just the right balance for our front porch. Its and odd shape and the ceiling is very tall. I finally came around to the idea of trying out some topiaries. So, I went to Lowe's and picked out the best ones I could find.

Welcome to our front porch!

I am simply in love with how these turned out, and I love the burlap bow for fall!

I also love how they look from inside the house too. It adds a little bit of a greenery to the inside.

Of course, I also had to have a fern! These are one of my favorites. I guess I am partial to them from living in The South, but no porch is complete without a fern. I don't know why, but to me they are so inviting. I love being out on our back porch rocking next the fern.

Creating wreaths for the holidays is my favorite season for wreaths, but one thing that never changes is my itch to add a monogram to everyone of them. Wooden monograms are perfect and versatile. I have 2 of them in different sizes and I cannot tell you how many times that they have been repainted.

I highly recommend ordering yourself one! There are so many options to choose from on Etsy.

I've often dreamed of a different house, one with a wrap around porch and white siding with navy shutters. I've wished to leave this home and write it off as a starter home. But, this home is much more than a starter home and it is much to pretty to leave.

After 4 years, I am starting to love every square foot of our home and of our property. I find myself putting more effort into areas that I hadn't cared about before. Our front porch has been the start of that for the outside of our home! I actually enjoy doing some yard work, and look forward to the end result.

PS- I am still enjoying my pumpkin cake! I have even had it for breakfast a few times.

Stumbling Block

Have you ever found yourself comparing yourself to someone else? You envy their house or their style or even their whole life! But then you take a step back and realize that they are in a completely different place in life than you are. Have you ever experienced the moment when inspiration turns to imitation? I have. I can answer yes to all of the above. 

I hate that our society deems it ok the envy and to covet what others have. Wether it be their body type, their home, their spouse, the fancy vacation they took or even their ability to have children. Why as women to we put ourselves through this? Why do we tear ourselves down to envy someone else? We are each unique and made for a specific purpose!

As a daughter of The King, I have a purpose and my place in life is exactly where He lead me. If I willed myself into having someone else's home or life then I would miss out on the moments that God has clearly laid out for me. I have been in that moment where I would trade anything for someone else's home, body type and to be honest I have envied those who are able to get pregnant! I have also had the moment of conviction. The conviction that God did not lead me to live a jealous life but instead to be thankful for all of the blessings He has already given me. 

I see the imperfections in my life. The ones that don't make it in pretty blog or IG photos. I know the mess that lies just beyond the camera lens. But y'all don't see that. I might be in the place of disdain toward something in my life, but one of you could be in the place of envy of that same thing! I want to assure you that my life isn't perfect, my home isn't perfect! Do you know what is perfect? Gods plan for my life and for your life. He allow us to envy and to covet so that we can come to the place of conviction. If we never envied, then we would never grow spiritually. 

In the moment when you feel jealously or envy creep up into your life, take some time to stop and tell The Lord what you are thankful for! Put down the phone and walk away from social media if it beings to bring up ungodly feelings. When you are consumed by thankfulness and a grateful heart for the things He has provided for you, then it is hard to be jealous of others earthy possessions. 

I want to be 100% clear on this next statement. I am not trying to preach and portray to you that I am perfect and never envy, because that would be a lie. I am struggling with these same feelings, and I want to share them with y'all as a means of accountability. I hope that these words will reach those of you out there that need to hear them. I am praying for you and I am praying that this blog will not be a stumbling block but instead a place of encouragement. 

Here are some verses about envy- write them down, keep them on your phone. Put them in a place that will keep you accountable and will keep your heart free from envy. 
Proverbs 14:30 A sound heart is the life of the flesh: but envy the rottenness of the bones.

James 3:14-16 But if you have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. This wisdom descends not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.

Song of Solomon 8:6 Set me as a seal on your heart, as a seal on your arm: for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which has a most vehement flame.

I want y'all to be able to come to this blog and be inspired, but no envious. I want y'all to feel encouraged and uplifted not torn down or inferior. If you have ever felt that in the words and photos of this blog then I am truly sorry. I want to change that!

Dining Room Update + A Little Fall

This post originally started out as a whole home fall house tour, but then I remembered that I never really showed y'all our formal living room to dining room conversion. KJR wasn't quite on board with the plan at first, but I moved the furniture around while he was at work. I think he's warming up to the idea of it now though.

So, I want to officially welcome y'all to my new dining room. Enjoy!

I love that the fireplace is now in the dining room, it has always been on my list for my dream home.

And, now for the more fall details.

In the dining room, I wanted to keep the everyday table decor more simple. Since we eat at that table almost daily, I didn't want to clutter it with excessive table decorations and place settings. Now I most certainly plan on setting a grand tablescape, but for the rest of the time I want it to be simple and inviting.

The burlap stacked pumpkins was a random find at CVS! Yes, CVS of all places. I never go into CVS, but I am really glad my mom talked me into going in that day.

Moving the dining room to the old living room meant that I now get to use the built ins to display china an cook books! I love that I can see my pretty cookbooks. 

The dining room is starting to look more and more like a dining room and less like a living room. I love the lamps I found to go on the side table, and with the addition of those I think the room is pretty much complete, for now.

This chair has has so many different homes since I found and recovered it, but I love that it has ended up back in the room where it first began. 

Our dachshund loves to sit here an look out the window. I even caught him in action while I was photographing the dining room.

The Bailee felt left out and needed to be in a picture too.

I hope that y'all enjoyed hanging out with me in our updated dining room! What do you think? If you want to see what this space looked like last fall, head here. Come back next week and I will share the rest of the fall decor in our home. Have a blessed weekend!

Glorifying God in the Everyday at Home

Do you read Jesus Calling? It is one of my everyday go-to's. I normally start my day by reading it at the dining room table or at my desk, but since the weather has been cooling down find myself taking my morning quiet time outside. Ever since I began doing this, the inspiration I have received has been amazing. One devotion that really spoke to me lately, was from Monday, September 14, 2015. 

After reading through the words in the devotional and the corresponding verses, I sat on my porch open to listen and hear what The Lord had for me that day. I am a housewife with a 9-5 WFH job, how do I make every moment in my day glorify God. What could I do that would glorify him? Then the truth hit me, like a ton of bricks.

I live in an area where there are very few homeless and most people around me are middle and upper class. In the midst of this world, it is so easy to forget how blessed I am to have a home. I take for granted my life as a wife and a homeowner with a stable job. I look at other people around me and those online that I follow and I think gee I want that or why can't my house be that big?

I don't always keep my house clean, I don't always keep the weeds pulled and the yard looking good and The Lord has convicted me of that. To whom much is given, much is required. I have been blessed with much but have disregarded the second part of that verse. I instead want to be lazy, I want to sit at home after working at a desk for 8 hours and veg. 

But thats not what I was called to do. The Bible doesn't say that to me much is given but nothing is required. My excessive laziness is not OK. The Lord has laid upon my heart, that I need to begin to take better care of my home and the things I have been blessed with. I am embarrassed to think that I am ignoring my call. 

Earlier this year, I felt the Lord tell me plain as day that my calling is hospitality. I am still on the journey to find out what that will look like in my life, but I can't expect Him to trust me with big plans if He can't trust me to take care of my home?

These are some of my favorite verses about home. I hope this post or one of these verses inspires you. Maybe the Lord has been laying something about your home on your heart. I pray that my words can carry that message to your heart through Him!

By wisdom a house is built, And by understanding it is established; And by knowledge the rooms are filled With all precious and pleasant riches. Proverbs 24:3-4

Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: Except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain Psalm 127:1

Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God's work from beginning to end. Ecclesiastes 3:11

Thank you for bearing with me through this wordy post, but I felt called to share this with y'all. Even if it only speaks to one person, it was well worth it!

Simple Potato Soup for Fall

This is one of my favorite recipes to make, especially during the chilly months. It is super easy and doesn't require much effort! I hope y'all try it and love it as much as I do!

1 32oz. bag of frozen diced hash browns
1 32 oz box of chicken broth- I use low sodium
1 can of cream of chicken soup ,10 oz
1 pkg. cream cheese, 8 oz- I use the real stuff, not the fat free!
3 oz bacon bits 
2 cup shredded cheddar cheese + additional for garnish
salt and pepper to taste 

Put the hash browns in the crockpot.  Add in the chicken broth, cream of chicken soup and half of the bacon bits.  Add a pinch of salt and pepper.  
Cook on low for 7-8 hours or until potatoes are tender.  
An hour before serving, cut the cream cheese into small cubes. ( I found that if you add the cream cheese at room temp instead of cold that it mixes much better)  Place the cubes in the crock pot.  Mix a few times throughout the hour before serving.  
 Once the cream cheese is completely mixed in, it's ready to serve. Right before serving add in 2 cups of cheddar cheese and mix in to allow the soup to thicken
  Top with cheddar cheese and some additional bacon bits.

If you make it, I would love to hear what you think of it! PS- It always tastes better in a cute pumpkin bowl during fall!

Enjoy, y'all!

Southern Hospitality

Pineapples have been viewed as a symbol of hospitality since Christopher Columbus first encountered the pineapple in 1493 on the Leeward island of Guadeloupe, where the local people placed pineapples in their doorways as a sign of welcome.

Well, welcome to my home! There are plenty of pineapples here, and I am sharing a few of them with y'all today. Enjoy!

This past weekend my parents had an impromptu sleep over at our house, so the next morning my mom and I went out antique/thrift store shopping. By the end of the morning, we were tired and ready for a Dunkin Donuts sweet peach tea(THE BEST!),  but we stopped in one more shop and I found this pineapple plate rack for $20!

It is about 2 feet tall and it fits perfectly into the built ins in our dining room. Sadly, it only hold salad or dessert plates, but it is still pretty cute!

Also in the dining room, I have these pineapple taper holders from Williams Sonoma. They are no longer in stock, but there are multiple pairs for sale on eBay. When the sun starts to go down in the evenings these reflect the light all through out the room. 

PS- If you ever purchase candle holders similar to this from Williams Sonoma, make sure that you also purchase a box of tiny tapers to go with them. These are very skinny, and I haven't seen them anywhere else before. 

This is probably one of my all time favorite goodwill finds! I found this print in this frame for $3! We recently had a new goodwill open near us about a month ago, and in that month I have found 3 pineapple items. This picture, a pineapple rug and a pineapple cocktail napkin holder.

My other find from this past weekend, was this rug! I have been looking for a rug for our foyers and this one fits perfectly. I hope it welcomes many people into our home.

Now that I have this pineapple rug in the foyer, I think the next thing I need to get is this pineapple doorbell! I love that it says welcome at the bottom. How adorable is it!

Do you have any pineapples in your home? Have a wonderful Tuesday! Too bad this week isn't a short week like last week was!