livingfamilytravelmediahome decor

Inside Her Brain


We have a new piece of art for our home! Actually, it's not really new. It's been waiting for framing for almost four years now. Since it is so large, the estimate we received to frame it ranged from $800 to $900. So Hubby recently got inspired to try some framing on his own. The matting can be purchased at a local art store (approximately $10-20 for one large coloured sheet), and the glass is ordered custom to fit the wood frame. All up, … [Read more...]

I Won $1,000 at a Cardel Homes Event! (#CardelCaresOtt)


Uh huh, you read that right! I won $1,000! Pretty awesome, right? Oh, it gets better ... Okay, let me back up. A week or so ago, I was invited to a luncheon that was taking place at the Cardel Homes model homes in Blackstone (Kanata South area of Ottawa). The objective of the event was to gather the local media and blogging community as well as charitable organizations, and share how Cardel Homes actively contributes to the communities … [Read more...]

This Package Made Me Cry.


I was working late, so I put a call into home to see how everyone was doing. My daughter's first words were: "A huge package arrived!" (My son's next words were: "Is it for me?") I asked Stella to check the label and see who had sent it. When she told me it was from Posterjack, I too felt excited and couldn't wait to get home! Remember this family photo that I loved so much, taken by local photographer Sarah McCormack? I had told her that I … [Read more...]

Tree Stump Furniture: I’m Obsessed!

Reclaimed wood side table

I'm not sure why, but I have developed a massive crush with tree stump furniture. By "furniture," I mean side tables or stools. I love the natural textures and the casual look of them. Plus, they are versatile and can be easily moved around to different rooms. I've been collecting images in a Pinterest board and here are some of my favourites: … [Read more...]

Target Stores Open in Ottawa: What’s All the Buzz About?


I was long overdue to finally have a coffee with The Maven of Mayhem. We decided today was the day. And I decided, "Hey, maybe we could check out the new Target store opening up in our neighbourhood while we're at it?" … [Read more...]

20 Dollars of Cheer


It's March 22nd. The snow is heavier than ever. It's getting me down. We Canadians get really quite desperate for Spring and I think I've hit that desperate phase. So I treated myself to 20 dollars worth of flowers from my local grocery store. They have a variety of blooms that go for 3 for $20. I picked some yellow tulips, pink tulips, and some pretty white flowers that I don't know the name of. I spread the flowers out so that I could … [Read more...]

Table Lamps for the Bedside Tables – Take 2

two lamp options

Okay, so my niggling feeling that the lamps, no matter how much I liked them, were not "right" for the space was confirmed LOUDLY by all of you yesterday! haha ... I love getting your opinions -- you guys rock! One thing was communicated clearly -- I need bigger lamps! In particular, Giulia recommended the sizing to be as follows: "If going for a shade you need something bigger, the top of the lampshade should hit where the the top of your … [Read more...]

Table Lamps for the Bedside Tables

Industrial style bedside table lamp

Like most folks, our home decor projects are moving right along at a snail's pace. But I do have (perhaps) one small piece of progress: Table Lamps for the Bedside Tables. If you didn't catch the original post, Hubby crafted bedside tables for us that are a combination of sleek and rustic. The room has nothing else in it yet except for the master bed, which is constructed entirely from the dark wenge wood you can see above, and a … [Read more...]

Christmas Cheer: Better Late than Never!

Red roses with silver

Our family was visited by not only Santa, but the stomach flu over the past few days. As a result, our Christmas dinner was delayed from December 25th to today. 10 adults and 4 kids will be arriving in a couple of hours! It will be so nice to have everyone here. We have the new dining room table set up pretty for all the adults, and a separate "kids table" for the four cousins (I always loved being at a kids table when I was a kid, didn't … [Read more...]

Christmas Cheer: How to Make Your Home Smell Like Christmas Without Using Chemicals

Natural Christmas Smells, Package

My neighbour just popped over with a little gift (have I mentioned before how much I love my neighbourhood? Oh, I do!) for me. She follows this blog and knows that I've been trying to eliminate the number of toxins that my family is exposed to, and brought me over a sweet little package for making my home smell all lovely and Christmas-y -- naturally, without chemicals. She said it is her new "go-to" hostess gift ... but also perfect for … [Read more...]

The Dining Table is Finished! The Dining Table is Finished!

Dining table showing the base

Back in April, I had told you about Hubby's plans to build a dining table. We wanted something BIG ... big enough to host our whole family easily at any time. And he has a strong affection for modern, crisp clean lines. It was a labour of love my friends, but it is now complete and I am thrilled! It is over 9 feet in length, so we'll be able to have 10-12 people around it for sure. After the jump, you can check out some more photos. … [Read more...]

Planning for a Big Boy’s Room

When we moved into this house, we'd promised Stella that we'd decorate her room right away. She was feeling upset about leaving our old home and neighbourhood and we thought that a special room of her own would help. We followed through on that promise and her room is pretty darn cute, if I say so myself. But for Max, a toddler with no real emotional ties to the old house, we simply plunked his existing furniture into the new bedroom. We … [Read more...]

A Curtain Rod

Curtain Rod from Lowes, Curtains from Tonic Living

Unlike every "reality" television show, I have concluded that unless you are extremely well-heeled, creating a home in a decor that you love takes a very long time. In our old home, I never bothered because we had always planned to reno the place and I didn't want to invest in something only to find it didn't work after the reno. But now, Hubby and I are in agreement that with this home, we will take the time to invest and surround ourselves with … [Read more...]

Vignette Attempts: Family Gathering

Happy Flowers vignette @coffeewihjulie

When we had a family gathering a little while back, I got inspired to try a couple of vignettes with some flowers that had been given to me. They didn't turn out terrific, but I really enjoy doing them. They are far more difficult to get "just right" than it would seem ... mostly they seem to come off over-done or amateurish. So far, I'm in the amateur category! This is the "Happy Flower" vignette in the front hall. I used a tarnished silver … [Read more...]

I have an Art Wall. Or is it a Gallery Wall? Whatever it’s Called, I Love It.

Gallery Wall @coffeewithJulie

So, I think it's about time I pull away from my melancholic haze and come back to some happy-happy-joy-joy. And one thing that is really making me happy these days is coming home to my art wall. An "art wall" or "gallery wall" is something I've been lusting after for ages (fellow lustees are welcome to drool at my Gallery Wall Pinterest board). Ignore the couch, coffee table, lamps, old trunk (yes, okay, that is everything in the room) ... … [Read more...]

Custom Drapery for the Living Room

Fabric Samples from Tonic Living

You know how when you watch Sarah Richardson (of Sarah 101 fame) she always manages to find some beautiful fabrics and have throw pillows and custom curtains made? Well, I always wonder: Is that actually a realistic option or is that just something designers can not only know how to do, but also, afford to do. In the end, I decided to find out for myself. I mean, why not, right? I'd already taken the leap into throw pillows, so I'm practically … [Read more...]

50 Shades of Black*

Shades of Black: Benjamin Moore

Alrighty, friends! Major progress on the painting front! We have guests arriving this evening and Hubby put a major push on to have all the painting done before they got here. So now, as I type this, everything is Cloud White except my office, which is out of view, and the kitchen, which I have almost convinced Hubby to paint white as well. I have no idea why I am so thrilled with the white. But I am and I'm not gonna fight that happy … [Read more...]

The Weekend White Wash


The weekend that was ... was all paint, all the time. We chose our new home specifically to avoid having to do any kind of renovations. We were tired of spending our time on them, and wanted to spend our free time on travelling. Or pretty much anything else really. Hubby loves to work with his hands, but the tedious work of painting and drywall -- not so much. But ... (you knew there was a "but" coming, right?) the peachy undertone of … [Read more...]

The Master Bed


Since we moved into our new home last summer, Hubby and I have been sleeping on a mattress on the floor. That's right, just like college kids. What happened was that when we moved in, my mother-in-law and step-father-in-law were visiting from Australia and we wanted to be sure they had a comfortable bed. So we moved our existing bed right into the guest room of our new home and it's been there ever since. That bed was actually created by hand … [Read more...]

Impractical Purchasing: The Bicycle Edition (Part 2 of 2)

"Julie's Bicycle," by Andrew King

Okay, so where were we? Ah, yes, I had rudely let the season three finale of Glee interrupt my story about my (lack of) bicycle. And since then I also let two children with fevers, a work project, and countless other errands get in the way too. Geez - where are my priorities?? Let's get back at this, shall we? I had walked away from the oh-so-cute retro bike with custom painting so that I could choose something more practical that fit … [Read more...]

Pillow Talk


source Okay, I want to talk pillows. (What, did you think I was talking about something else?? No, I really mean pillows! This is not a book review for Fifty Shades of Grey ... sorry to disappoint.) Like most things related to "home decor," I have never taken an interest until we moved into a new family home last June. Whereas before I was addicted to stalking the MLS Guide for my favourite neighbourhoods, now I am addicted to stalking home … [Read more...]