Category Archives: White Cottage Farmhouse

As The Dust Settles

I’ve said it a million times on here before, but I will say it again. Ever since November started life has been insane. It was my first time ever owning a shop during the holidays [WOW!] that was intense [& amazing]. So the entire Christmas season was incredibly busy, & then as soon as it ended there we were moving our store to the bigger location & getting it ready to open.  It’s just been nuts, but even in the busiest time of my life I still want to share clips of our life with you guys. BUT I would be lying if I didn’t say that I am thrilled to slow down soon as we get settled in the new shop, to get back to work on our farmhouse, do more projects, & spend more time at White Cottage Farm. In case you missed it, this is what I have been sharing lately behind the scenes on Instagram

At the store…


& on the farm…


Isn’t that blanket adorable? A sweet reader gave that to our pups with a painting of them on it [She doesn’t have social media but if you want custom pet portrait blankets you can email her at JenniferLGress@yahoo.com] I want to say thank you to you guys for being there through every season that we are in. As this busy season of having no time at home ends, I’m excited to start some big projects at the farmhouse & share more with you guys. Of course owning a shop is always going to keep me busy, but as my word of the year is “balance”, I am finding how to really just do that. I hope you guys had a great week & enjoy this weekend! It’s Jose’s 30th birthday on Sunday so I’m excited to spend a few days with him celebrating another year of his life. Thanks for following me behind the scenes on Instagram, Facebook, & of course here on the blog. xx

 

Kitchen Makeover – Bye Bye Island!

If you guys follow me on Instagram you know that this past week among the chaos of opening up our new store last week that Jose and I decided to start demolition on our kitchen & so we ripped out our kitchen island. It ended up being a little harder than I imagined… it was a very well built island! Something that I thought would take 20 minutes took a few hours, but we made it into something fun. We actually thought we would be farther on our kitchen demo by now, but I honestly couldn’t get  vision for the space. I was very confused on what we should do in our kitchen, but one day I woke up and knew exactly what to do. Then the holidays hit & then we were moving stores… it was a mess. So everything else in my life got put on hold including fun house projects. BUT because I couldn’t resist starting the demo, on our only day off last week we decided to rip out the kitchen island. Here is how it looked before with the island still in tact…

& how it looks today…

So much fun to see the little progress we have made. It already feels so much more open now! We honestly just started by taking all the cabinet doors off the island and removed all the drawers. after that we started tackling the trim off the bottom and it kind o just started falling apart at all the seams as we went. Jose and I both commented on how fun it is to demo something because it’s kind of like a puzzle as you go. We used a lot of pry bars, sledge hammers, multi tools, hammers, & screwdrivers. It took a couple of hours & it was right out the door into a trash bin we had ordered prior to the demo to get rid of the mess right away. & that was that, the island is no more!! We still need to take that bulk head piece out of the ceiling, but that’s for another day this week. I’m a person who wants everything done right away, but I’m learning to be patient & that it’s just impossible so beginning this big kitchen remodel just felt really good. What do you guys think so far of our demo.. long way to go huh? The next project?

-ripping out flooring
-new window
-tearing out all upper cabinets
-painting lower cabinets
-painting the ceiling
-new countertops
-new hood range
-putting a new island in
-changing out appliances
-adding a wall treatment
-adding shelving
-putting a new wall in on the opposite side of the room
-putting new flooring throughout the kitchen & connected sunroom
-painting, painting, & more painting
-adding new & more lighting
….. & the list will go on I’m sure.

Thank you for being on this journey with us as we fix up our 1800’s farmhouse!! Be sure to follow me on Facebook & Instagram for more behind the scenes. xx

 

Rustic Winter Mantel

This time after Christmas has been so strange for me this year. It’s always kind of a strange time because I’m coming off the holiday high & settling back to “normal life” which is never really normal for me. Last year at this time I was opening up a store for the first time ever & this year at the exact same time we are moving our store to a bigger location. It really never ends. We have had no rest or relaxation at home so our winter decor wasn’t really a thing I spent a lot of time on. This year I simply took the Christmas stuff down & left up some winter greens & natural elements & that was what I called my winter decor like here on our dining room mantel…

Our mantel is simply just an antique find laying against the wall. I stacked two antique trunks in it & on the trunks I placed an antique typewriter, an antique scale with a vintage sign I found & a tablecloth from Magnolia, & I also have a top of an antique scale filled with pinecones. On the mantel I placed a garland that I believe I picked up from Michaels last year & some pinecones. Over the mantel I have some art from House Of Belonging with a wintery wreath that I found at HomeGoods. I think my favorite par too this winter vignette is the “For Rent” sign that I picked up on a recent picking trip with my friend Abby aka 1/3rd of The Found Cottage trio. We had such a great day that day visiting some of our favorite places & this sign stuck out to me for some reason. I wonder where it’s from, what it was used on, when was it used, so many questions! Such a simple little space, but yet it has tons of cozy wintery texture.

I hope you guys liked this little look at our rustic winter mantel. Winter decor is really just that simple. Taking the Christmas decor out & leaving the winter greens in. It doesn’t have to be anything more than that & that kind of makes this transition period very easy when it comes to decor. Now for the craziness of opening a new store, not sleeping, & trying to keep life in order, I have no fix for that. But the good news? The store opens in 3 days! & than I can rest right? I’m so ready! I can’t wait for the grand re-opening. You can read more and see more of what we have been up to on our event page for Saturday [HERE] & read more about it on the blog [HERE]. Thank you to all of you who have sent us prayers & well wishes! & thank you for stopping by the blog today, I hope you are leaving inspired. xx

 

See more of our winter farmhouse…

See our rustic winter entryway [HERE]

See our rustic winter white cabinet [HERE]

Farmhouse Winter White Cabinet

Hi guys! thanks for dropping by the blog today. I wanted to show you guys a bit of our winter dining room & show you one of my favorite finds of all time. I know I say that a lot, but I am in love with this new addition to White Cottage Farm. If you haven’t noticed yet, I am addicted to white chippy primitives. It’s a thing I have an obsession with especially since moving to our 1800’s farmhouse that has more room for them. Anything from chippy white cupboards to architectural salvage. I of course don’t pick them all up that I find, but I can’t pass up some of them that I find like this punched tin cabinet that I came across a few weeks ago that came to our farmhouse this past weekend finally…

White chippy farmhouse cupboard - Farmhouse winter decor in a farmhouse dining room on LizMarieBlog.Com

White chippy farmhouse cupboard - Farmhouse winter decor in a farmhouse dining room on LizMarieBlog.Com

White chippy farmhouse cupboard - Farmhouse winter decor in a farmhouse dining room on LizMarieBlog.Com

Isn’t she lovely? She’s all I have ever dreamed of. A white primitive cupboard with tons of detail and texture. So perfect especially decorated simply for winter. After Heritage Trunk co. was kind enough to drop it off at our farm we moved I knew it had to go in our dining room somewhere. Jose and I moved it in & I immediately started decorating it because that’s what every sane person does at 9 o’clock at night after pulling 12 hour shifts at the shop right? I put a simple winter garland draped on top of the cabinet along with my favorite little wood stool. Hanging on the wall behind the cabinet is one of my favorite white chippy architectural finds. Next to the cabinet is an antique dough bowl & an antique white stool with some of my antique seltzer bottle collection. Just a pretty little  corner in our dining room. Since we have started the slow process of our kitchen remodel this cupboard will be filled with dishes & come in handy!

White chippy farmhouse cupboard - Farmhouse winter decor in a farmhouse dining room on LizMarieBlog.Com

White chippy farmhouse cupboard - Farmhouse winter decor in a farmhouse dining room on LizMarieBlog.Com

White chippy farmhouse cupboard - Farmhouse winter decor in a farmhouse dining room on LizMarieBlog.ComWhite chippy farmhouse cupboard - Farmhouse winter decor in a farmhouse dining room on LizMarieBlog.Com

I wanted to introduce you guys to this new little cabinet of ours & show you how I styled it for winter since I haven’t really done a full “winter home tour” this year since we are living in a fixer upper with lots of unfinished spaces. What do you think of our new farmhouse winter white cabinet? Are you as obsessed with primitive cabinets as I am? Let me know in the comments below, find me on Facebook, & chat with me on Instagram. THANK YOU so much for stopping by my blog today & for sharing with your friends & family.. it means the world to me! xx

I Got The Cover Of A Magazine!

This weekend as I came home late at night after a long & exhausting day at the store I tripped over a small package on my back stoop that I hadn’t seen as I was stumbling in the dark. Or maybe it was because my body was giving out at me after lifting heavy furniture for 12 hours & prepping for the grand re-opening this coming week. Either way I was excited to rip it open & see what was inside. As I opened it I saw two magazines & I couldn’t remember ordering anything, but kept investigating. It was “Gift Shop Magazine” & I immediately recognized the photo on the front cover….

Of course I recognized it from Magnolia Market & my visit there this past fall, but it was also a photo that I took.. yes, on the cover of a magazine! I was thrilled. There were also a few of my photos throughout the magazine as well. I had been in magazines before, but this is my first cover, & also a different situation where it was my photography & not my design work. Just a very cool new experience for me all together. It was also the perfect moment. Being a shop owner is hard. It’s so amazing, but it’s also a lot of work. I love it so much & I never want to hang it up, but there are seasons where your back feels like it’s going to break & your brain feels fried like these past two weeks as we closed the doors on our old shop & have been moving to our new location for our grand re-opening this coming Saturday [you can read more about it HERE]. The magazine was like a pat on the back, like a “Hey you are doing ok.” It was a true gift in that moment that I’m doing what I love & to keep on going.

That trip to Magnolia itself was a true gift. I went with Magnolia Home Paint by Kilz & it was a dream come true to not only visit Magnolia Market, but also to work with such a great team while I was there. A LOT happened during my visit & you can read more about that [HERE]. I spent a lot of time soaking in the sights, meeting amazing people, & capturing photos of angles that I loved. It’s such an honor to have those photos in print now to keep forever. I am just a girl who is passionate about design & decor & is so thankful for opportunities like this more than I could ever say. This feature was special in a new was as well because I’ve been in lots of home decor magazines, but to be in “Gift Shop” magazine as a store owner was pretty fun as well, now I think they need to come & photograph our new store don’t you think? A huge thank you to Gift Shop magazine for featuring my photos & making my whole weekend & a HUGE thank you to you guys because you encourage me daily to keep doing & sharing what I love. Thank you! & thank you for stopping by the blog today & everyday to see what I’m up to. Be sure to follow me on Facebook & Instagram for more behind the scenes. xx

Read more about my Magnolia trip [HERE]

Read more about this lamp [HERE]

Liz Marie Blog Best Of 2016

On this first week of the new year I wanted to reflect on my favorite project of this year. Sounded like fun until I realized it was impossible to do with the INSANE year that we had. It started out with us opening a store in January. The store has kept me busy 24 hours a day all year & it’s success is all a gift from God that I will never ever take for granted. I’m so thankful. After that we decided buy an 1800’s farmhouse & an 8 acre farm. We moved from our home that we had just moved into a year prior & what a whirlwind it was! We started a million house projects [ & finished none of them] & have a million more house projects to do on our fixer-upper farmhouse. That being said, it wasn’t hard for me to pick a project because I had so many awesome ones, it was because I didn’t have many epic before & afters, but simply just a lot of little progress in our home that you can see [HERE]. BUT I still wanted to pick one that I loved & that kind of completed at least one wall in one little space in our home…

The entryway of our home is really the only space that got a makeover this past fall & it felt so good among the whole house being under construction to have a little finished wall. I mean, of course minus the floors. The floors in the above photo were unfinished. Here is how they are looking now & how it’s styled for winter like I blogged [HERE] yesterday…

The floors have been painted in the front living room now & things are looking different around here! I can’t wait to show you this whole space when the floors are finished. Anyways, so 2016 was really exciting here on the blog with us finishing up our last fixer upper home & moving onto the farmhouse & I hope that 2017 is even more exciting. One BIG thing I want to tackle is our kitchen/sunroom area with a complete overhaul. This was our kitchen makeover from our last house that we finished in 2016…

It was such a tiny little kitchen & I loved it! You can see more [HERE] You can see more of our last house [HERE] & what we did to it. Our kitchen now is much larger & is going to involve a TON more demo & work. But that makes me so excited! I can’t wait to get started. Here is what it’s looking like now…

This is just one of the angles of the space & as you can see I haven’t had my touch on the space yet.. demo starts this weekend & expect to see full updates very soon here on the blog & on Instagram & Facebook. You can see more of the kitchen & what our plans are [HERE]. THANK YOU for being a huge part of the blog in 2016 and for following along on our farmhouse, store, & fertility journey. Every visit to the blog means so much to me.. I could never even tell you or explain to you how happy it makes me. I am so excited for what 2017 is going to bring here on the blog & I’m so excited to have you along with me. Do you have any big projects planned for 2017? Let me know in the comments below, find me on Facebook, & chat with me on Instagram. Also, visit some of my other blogger friends & see what their top project for 2016 was and what their plans for 2017 are…

Ella Claire | City Farmhouse | French Country Cottage | Miss Mustard Seed

My Sweet Savannah | Craftberry Bush | Rooms for Rent | Shades of Blue Interiors

Jennifer Rizzo | Kindred Vintage | Liz Marie Blog

 

 

Cozy Farmhouse Winter Entryway

You guys!! We are still not done painting the front living room floors.. I mean, we are almost there, but not quite. Hopefully by next week I will have a big update for you on that. On the other side of the room is our front entryway by the staircase & I did a little winter decorating in that space after I took down all the Christmas decor & I wanted to share it with you today in all it’s simplicity…


Sorry about the photos being a little dark, but it’s been so gloomy here on the farm & I can’t seem to catch any sun rays coming in the house lately so this is what I could get. The first thing you can see is the progress of our painted floors in this room.. I’m loving them so much so far especially in this area when I start bringing decor & furniture back in the space. The rest of the room is an absolute disaster, but more on that later.


This space is super simple with all it’s moody winter light & black accents among all the white. I filled the black tray under the church pew with live winter greens that are also hanging on the stair railing. On the church pew I placed a farm pillow from The Found Cottage along with a “staple goods” pillow from H&M. The plaid throw is from Home Goods & that black lamp is a find from Target. You can go [HERE] to see the rest of the sources for the space.

Such a fun space, I can’t wait to work more on this room this weekend & make more progress so that this isn’t the only pretty angle of the space. But for now the store has been taking up a lot of time so there hasn’t been much progress made on the house the past few weeks. You can read more about the store & our move [HERE]. I hope you guys liked seeing our winter entryway & thank you SO MUCH for stopping by the blog today. Let me know what you think of the space in the comments below, find me on Facebook, & chat with me on Instagram. xx

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*Some links in this post may be affiliate links, but as always all opinions are my very own genuine thoughts.

Magnolia Lamp

I hope I’m not the only one who does this because now that I’m typing it I feel a little bit selfish, but here it goes… During this fertility journey of ours I have learned that in the low points or the hard times that giving myself a gift makes it a little easier. I think they call that retail therapy. Well, as I blogged about [here] & [here], Christmas after miscarriages & while struggling with infertility can be pretty tough. The reminder of loss is all around. One thing that comes up is not being able to buy gifts for our seven littles that are in heaven. So, it always helps to buy myself something special around the holidays as a reminder of hope & of those babies of ours that we lost. Also, because let’s face it.. when I’m sad I like buying pretty things. It’s just what I do. Of course I don’t use this method alone to deal with our huge loss, but spoiling myself, Jose, & my family around the holidays is one of my favorite things to do. So, this year a while before Christmas I purchased something that I had my eyes on when I visited Waco this past summer…
The magnolia lamp from Magnolia Market. It’s described as Joanna’s favorite lamp & I’m quite fond of it as well. After living in North Carolina for 9 years, magnolia trees were always my favorite. In our downtown rental we had a large magnolia tree hanging above our courtyard & I was obsessive with picking up the fallen leaves & using them in our decor. I wish more than anything I could plant Magnolia trees on our farm here in Michigan.. Maybe it’s possible? Something kind of special actually happened by this lamp on my visit to Magnolia Market. You see I was by myself a lot at the market during the silobration this summer. I had a lot of alone time & found myself wandering around a lot taking it all in. As I was shopping by the lamps I met the sweetest couple who came to Magnolia market that day & we got to talking. I want to say we started talking about something else, but the conversation moved onto this lamp and how much we loved it. I wasn’t able to buy the lamp then because it wasn’t going to fit in my suitcase, but I convinced her to buy it since they were driving & I wanted at least one of us to get it that day. I was so fun meeting such nice people doing something so simple as shopping. I swear I met the nicest people while at Magnolia & this lamp is kind of a sweet reminder of that trip as well.

I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of this lamp when I got it. It was packaged perfectly & came surprisingly fast to my doorstep. I was shocked that the lampshade was actually a thick sturdy metal [it probably said that in the description, but I was too lazy to read it] & the lamp base was also thick quality metal as well. Everything on it was super sturdy including the finial at the top of the lamp which is a large magnolia blossom. I wouldn’t change a thing.. super happy with my new whimsical lamp!

This magnolia lamp, or Joanna’s favorite lamp as they call it, fits perfectly in our cozy little sunroom & adds the perfect little glow to the space that it needed. On this rainy day when I snapped the photos it made me especially happy. I love lamps on in the house on rainy afternoons. It’s a simple joy that makes me so thankful for a warm cozy home. Have you ever checked out this lamp? Do you own it? I would love to hear from you! Let me know in the comments below, find me on Facebook, & chat with me on Instagram. xx

 

Handmade Chunky Knit Wool Blanket

One thing that winter has taught me in an old farmhouse is that…it gets cold! We are learning ways to keep it warm and cozy, but it’s not like living in a brand new built home that’s for sure. I’ve learned to dress warm & that slippers are my best friend. I’ve also taken a special liking to blankets. Not any old wimpy blanket, but thick cozy ones preferably made of wool. Most recently I purchased a blanket from a sweet company I’ve been following for a long time now. I feel like I need to add a little disclaimer here. This blanket is a splurge. I’m usually a thrifty girl, I mean I have the blanket sitting on a vintage $10 chair from GoodWill & right behind the chair I hung cheap drop cloth curtains. Most of the furniture in our home is found items, most of the furniture in our sunroom here is hand-me-downs from my gram, & every once in a while I like to spend money on myself to spoil myself. This Christmas was hard for me, you can read more about that [here], & I wanted to gift myself something cozy. You know I always share my thrifty decor with you & DIY projects so thank you so much letting me share this with you as well. Every winter I feel like I need one of these big guys, but this year I finally gifted myself one & I’m so thankful I did! The company I’m talking about is Modern Wool…

Winter decor - chunky wool knitted blankets

Seriously, it’s the most gorgeous [& cozy] blanket I have ever seen. I can’t believe we own one now! I bought the large throw on their site [here] I’ve been sitting under it every day in our sunroom & I’ve had a hard time sharing it because it’s become my favorite cozy thing. Bella & Bear have also taken a liking to our new wool blanket & it just goes to prove how spoiled those little fur babies are.

Winter decor - chunky wool knitted blanketsWinter decor - chunky wool knitted blankets
Winter decor - chunky wool knitted blankets

These blankets are a splurge for me for sure, but there were a few points that had me sold. First of all it’s a small family business & every item is handmade with lots of love. They are made with the softest sheep wool with no synthetic fibers which is what I think sets these blankets apart from others that I have seen. Modern Wool also gave me a discount code & I’m able to share that with you guys as well. Use code LIZ for 20% your orders. How nice of them to offer that? They also have more products than just the wool blankets such as pillows, outerwear, & more.

Winter decor - chunky wool knitted blankets
I hope you guys enjoyed seeing one of my recent big purchases & also how I will be staying warm this winter in our farmhouse. You will probably be seeing this blanket pop up in a lot of my photos I share. Do you have a blanket from Modern Wool? Is it not your favorite thing ever?! Thank you guys SO MUCH for stopping by the blog today & for sharing it with you friends & family. Be sure to find me on Facebook & Instagram for more behind the scenes. xx

 

Some more winter decor inspiration…

For amazing winter decor inspiration [CLICK HERE]

Merry Christmas From White Cottage Farm

I can’t believe it’s here. Our first Christmas at White Cottage Farm!! I wanted to pop on here on Christmas Eve & wish you all a very Merry Christmas & to thank you for a few things. I’m not sure if you guys know this, but every time you stop here on the blog, every time you leave a comment, every time you share my blog with friends or family it brings me so much joy. As I reflect on this holiday season I see that you guys & the blog were a huge part of it & a great gift to me every single day. I have a HUGE passion for design & blogging so I am forever grateful that you make it so enjoyable to share my heart. Thank you for letting me share what I love here & for caring about our little family & farm. Christmas has been really special here on the farm this year & it gives me all the fuzzies thinking about what will come in the new year here in our home & our farm. Some new animals? Some new projects? My brain won’t stop, but I will take a break to enjoy the holiday the next few days… maybe…

I know I blogged a few days ago about being childless at Christmas [here] & I’m so thankful for all the kind words on that post. Not only are you guys amazing about our home decor & home renovations, but you guys are always so helpful along our fertility journey as well. Thank you for letting me open up here & being a form of therapy for our great loss. I hope in some small way I can help you if you are suffering with loss or hardships in your life. Thank you!

I always feel weird after Christmas because we take down all our Christmas decor, BUT this year I’m a little excited because after Christmas we are going to dive right back in to home renovations & I’m pumped! I’m hoping a new kitchen is in our very near future. I want to enjoy the Christmas decor for a couple more days, but then give me a paint brush and a hammer because 2017 is going to bring some exciting changes to White Cottage Farm.

Before the new year starts I will be blogging some goals for our farm, home, personal, & our shop. I’m not usually one for big goals, but this year I’m really feeling some changes are needed. I don’t know if it’s the holiday season, but I have really high hopes for 2017 & I’m so excited that you guys will be here for all of it. I’m going to do my best to document ever single step along the way and share it here better than I have done in the past.

So, this post has been a lot of rambling from me over coffee as I sit here in the sunroom. I wanted to come on here & wish you a Merry Christmas, but I couldn’t do that without saying thank you. I pray you all have a very Merry Christmas, a happy holiday, & are able to reflect on the ups & downs of this past year & find joy no matter what. Thank you guys for stopping by my little blog & for making my holiday season amazing. MERRY CHRISTMAS! XX

 

Tour our farmhouse at Christmas:

Christmas tour at night [click here]

Holiday house walk tour [Click Here]

Christmas entryway [click here]

Childless At Christmas

I just sat down on the sofa after a long day at the shop. It is so fun to work at our shop during the holidays. I get to be a part of everyone’s holiday season by helping them pick out gifts, hearing about their traditions, & just being a part of everyone’s Christmas cheer. I love it! I also get to be a sounding board for people who are dreading the holiday. Those that have suffered great loss & are feeling the impact of it as we get closer because of the constant reminders of the missing person in their lives. I love everyone’s presence from the overjoyed to the saddened because I feel like when they leave they leave with a little more joy after getting to chat with someone & do some fun shopping. After being blessed by everyone at the shop today as I drove home I realized that Christmas is only 4 days away & while my heart is filled with joy I am suddenly reminded in the craziness of the holidays of the huge loss we have suffered as a couple & just how different Christmas looks with a baby who would be almost 4 years old in heaven & 6 more that have followed that sweet baby.. all in heaven & all missed greatly here on earth.

Though I would love to title this post “Christmas while waiting for a baby”, I simply can’t because quite frankly I feel like to title it that it would imply that Jose and I were trying to grow our family. It’s been a year and a half since our last loss & we have never even talked about or stepped foot in a fertility office since then. Life has been so beautiful with the two of us, we are enjoying the honey moon phase going in our 10th year marriage, God has truly blessed us  & we felt like a break was needed in our fertility journey. Remember when I told you guys that after each loss God makes something BIG happen in our life. Well, the store was born shortly after our 6th miscarriage & that has been a major life altering event. In the best way possible shortly after that God gave us our farm & our 1800’s fixer upper farmhouse. It’s been crazy here in the best way possibly & I’m so thankful. God always provides & always seems to bring us so much joy in every season of our lives. But Jose and I are labeled “childless” by earthly standards & that can feel strange, scary, & hopeless, when we have 7 babies in heaven that we wish so badly were here with us to celebrate this joyous season with.  I can’t speak for everyone who is childless at Christmas during infertility struggles, but I can speak for us & maybe some can relate to how it feels to be childless during the holidays…


Lonely. 

For me I have moments of loneliness. Not only because we wish so badly that our babies were here with us for all the festivities, but also that our peers and family would include us in during those festivities. During the holidays I feel like I’m on high alert for being sensitive & though they may not mean it, not being invited to the Christmas tree lighting or not being included in conversations simply because they are about kids can hurt deep. A simple comment can feel like a dagger when it’s pointing out the fact that you don’t have children during the holidays like “Oh, must be nice to be able to decorate your home for Christmas, can’t do that if you have kids.’ seems like a normal comment, but what someone is complaining about we are longing for. I’ve had many of these & I’m so thankful that I’m able to shake them off and forgive, but it does bring out the loneliness which seems deeper around the holidays.

Quiet. 

How can quiet be so loud? At a time where we should be at preschool Christmas concerts & have kids on sugar highs running around the house screaming for Santa clause, we are [enjoying] peaceful nights snuggled on the couch watching cheesy Christmas movies & going on special dates among the holiday busyness. I AM SO GRATEFUL FOR THIS TIME & I promise I’m not taking it for granted because Lord knows when we have children I will be savoring those moments even more, but it’s quiet & around the holidays that is a HUGE reminder of our loss. If you know me, I rarely ever slow down. I’m always busy with something whether it’s the store, fixing up our farmhouse, blogging, or just making something pretty, but when you slow down & the anxiety creeps in it can get very quiet.

 

Dread. 

This one is hard for me to type, because I hate that I feel this way, but sometimes I dread the holidays. I dread the thought that it will most likely be a reminder of the loss we have endured. I dread going to that holiday party where that one person says something that hurts. I dread being left out.I dread the thought that our babies are forgotten more and more every holiday season. I dread the thought of making others sad about our loss. I dread the tears that may or may not come. I dread the loneliness.I dread the quiet. The dread doesn’t come from being childless for me because there is too much joy in our lives to not trust in God’s plan for us, but the dread comes from the loss of our babies that should be here with us.

Hope.

What an odd one to feel when the other feelings are not as positive. But if you have been following along on our fertility journey for any amount of time, I hope there is one thing you have picked up on… I choose to see the hope, the joy, & the beauty in it all. Being childless at Christmas isn’t the worst when you know your babies are in Heaven living the most perfect life, when you believe and trust that it’s all in God’s hands, when you know your life is exactly how He wants it, when you realize that most people don’t know they are hurting your with their words & actions, when you have a loving and supportive family, & when you know that one day you will have a little here on earth & that you need to enjoy every moment of your life in this moment because you will miss it. & by you, I mean me. I mean everyone that is childless not by choice this holiday season. There is hope & the holidays can bring out that hopeful feeling when you are celebrating the true meaning of the season, when you realize how much there is to be thankful for, & when you look for it their is always joy.

On this fourth year our infertility journey and after so many losses it would be easy to be discouraged & to completely check out during the holidays, but I know this is God’s plan for us. I am so thankful that, though this is not the journey I ever thought we would be on, that I get to do it all with my best friend by my side. I sat down tonight not knowing what I was going to say on here, but I guess I know that you guys have been on this journey with us since day one & I know a lot of you in one way or another are in the same boat as we are. Maybe your struggle doesn’t look like ours, maybe it’s way different, but I never want you to feel like you are alone, especially during the holidays. I pray you feel more positivity and hope this season & that the other negative feelings fall away with the joy of the season. Thank you guys for always lifting our spirits & always making our journey a little easier. & as always, thank you for stopping by & supporting this little blog of mine. xx

Something I wrote last Christmas about infertility around the holidays

Read about Christmas after miscarriage [HERE]

photos by Tifani Lyn Photography.

 

Rustic Christmas Porch Steps

Back in November I started decorating our front porch stairs. I have never shared them with you in all of that time because I went out there one day to work on them & never worked on them again beyond that & in turn never finished them. I wasn’t feeling inspired at all. Which is strange because ever since we moved into this house 7 months ago I was so excited to decorate the stairs for the holiday season, but when it came down to it, I plopped some Christmas buckets on the steps, filled them with some finds, & called it good. Guess what happned then? We got a million feet of snow & it covered everything on the porch. It was quite comical, but I didn’t want to just not share with you guys how the steps looked this season even if in my eyes it wasn’t “done”. So I trekked out in the snow & 15 degree temps yesterday & snapped some photos with how it turned out…

I mean, we are covered in snow here in West Michigan so I’m sorry I didn’t take these photos sooner, but it’s fitting no? These buckets were a find last year [here], & I just lined them up on each side of the front steps. In the bottom bucket I put clippings from our trees in our yard. Berries and pine are always great Christmas decor & it was free! In the next bucket up I places some birch logs that my dad found for me, another free item. Thanks dad! In the next bucket up I placed two Christmas trees that were black Friday finds from Target that I got for $15.. are you kidding? The garland hanging is from Balsam Hill. The string lights are from Amazon [here] & the snow was free as well… thank you mother nature!

& here area  few photos that Tifani Lyn took of us on our front steps this past week…

ok, now that I’m sitting here looking at all of the photos of our front stoop I’m kind of loving all of the snow & don’t think it would look quite as special without it. Glad I waited until the snow storm of 2016 to hit. what do you think of our front porch steps? Let me know in the comments below, find me on Facebook, & chat with me on Instagram! Thank you SO MUCH for stopping by the blog today! xx

 

Check out our back stoop decked out for Christmas too…

Click [here] to see our back stoop decorated for Christmas.

 

 

White Cottage Farm – Christmas Night Tour

My favorite time of year to decorate our home is Christmas.. that is kind of a dumb thing to say on here because I feel like you guys already know that. There is something about the tree, garland, ornaments, & of course the lights, that gets me right away. Today I wanted to share with you the lights. I’m not a pro photographer by any means so it’s always hard for me to share with you what our house looks like in the daytime & even harder to share how magical it looks at night. BUT, today I am joining some of my favorite blog friends in showing our homes twinkling at night. If you are visiting from Liz from Love Grows Wild [she is one of my favorite Liz’s of all time] thank you so much for stopping by! Here is a few night shots of our farm that I have taken so far this Christmas season…

Since we just moved to the farm 7 months ago & the house is a complete construction site, we were able to [or we were just too lazy  to decorate our fixerupper] Either way we didn’t go all out & it ended up being one of my favorite years. The simple lights on the outside, the simple naked trees inside, & decorating a new place has been fun. It seems like nightly while I’m outside letting the dogs out to go potty, I find myself  taking photos of the porch lights with the snow. It’s become a nightly ritual & if you follow me on Instagram or Facebook you already know that. I’m thankful you guys haven’t got sick of me yet… or at least don’t tell me. Thank you!


The dining room is probably the only room in our ENTIRE house that is close to being “finished” in our fixer upper 1800’s farmhouse, so it was the only room that really got totally decked out for Christmas & it was also my favorite room this year. At night the chandeliers glow so warmly drawing you into the space. I love these chandeliers & part of me wonders if I chose them solely on the holiday season that was among us. BUT I would have to say, my favorite photo I took inside our home so far this holiday season at night is our entryway area…

This entryway of ours is [was] my favorite Christmas decor this year until we had to take it down this week to re-do those floors [check my instagram out to see our progress!] & I like it even more at night in the glow of the lamps. BUT I would have to say that our porch is my all time favorite this year during the holidays…

I hope you guys liked that little tour of parts of our farmhouse all shiny and bright at night. It’s kind of fun sharing the house at night since it’s always during the day that I document our home. Next on the tour is Laura from Turquoise Home [here] Head on over to see what her home looks like this holiday season at night! Thank you guys so much for stopping by the blog today & for following me over on Facebook & Instagram. Be sure to visit my other blog friends homes this season as well…

MONDAY

Christmas Nights Tour: Incredible! 35 beautiful homes all decorated for the holidays and lit up by candlelight and Christmas lights...

Maison de Pax | Finding Silver Pennies | So Much Better With Age | Decor Gold Designs
French Country Cottage | Ella Claire Inspired | Love Grows Wild

TUESDAY

Christmas Nights Tour: Incredible! 35 beautiful homes all decorated for the holidays and lit up by candlelight and Christmas lights...

Liz Marie Blog | The Turquoise Home | A Burst of Beautiful | Nina Hendrick Design Co.
Cherished Bliss | Shabbyfufu | Shades of Blue Interiors

WEDNESDAY

Christmas Nights Tour: Incredible! 35 beautiful homes all decorated for the holidays and lit up by candlelight and Christmas lights...

Making Home Base | Lindsay Hill Interiors | Zevy Joy | Fox Hollow Cottage
Blesser House | Designthusiasm | TIDBITS

THURSDAY

Christmas Nights Tour: Incredible! 35 beautiful homes all decorated for the holidays and lit up by candlelight and Christmas lights...

Place of My Taste | Life on Virginia Street | Sunny Side Up | House by Hoff
Stylehouse Interiors | At Home With the Barkers | Beneath My Heart

FRIDAY

Christmas Nights Tour: Incredible! 35 beautiful homes all decorated for the holidays and lit up by candlelight and Christmas lights...

Kelly Elko | The Happy Housie | Setting for Four | Rooms FOR Rent
Thistlewood Farms | Just a Girl and Her Blog | The Wood Grain Cottage

Christmas Nights Tour: Incredible! 35 beautiful homes all decorated for the holidays and lit up by candlelight and Christmas lights...

Simple Handmade Farmhouse Decor

I have a problem, or not so much of a problem. I LOVE shopping small & shopping handmade! If you let me loose on Etsy for an hour there is bound to be a problem. I was browsing through Instagram the other day & I came across the most beautiful simple farmhouse Christmas decor that I knew I had to have. I instantly went to the shop of the lovely instagrammer & did some shopping…

Rustic Farmhouse christmas decor - A great pin for farmhouse & cottage style home decor inspiration.
Rustic Farmhouse christmas decor - A great pin for farmhouse & cottage style home decor inspiration.
Rustic Farmhouse christmas decor - A great pin for farmhouse & cottage style home decor inspiration.
Rustic Farmhouse christmas decor - A great pin for farmhouse & cottage style home decor inspiration.
So, the shop is 1871 Farmhouse [here] & it’s a new favorite of mine. It was my first time purchasing anything from this lovely shop so I picked up those two farmhouse linen stocking & that lovely little Merry christmas pillow. I styled them on the mantel in our dining room & I am in love with this little corner now. Shipping was super quick & I had the items within a week even though they came from Canada. Her Christmas items seem to be out of the shop now, but she has other great things like this cow print [here], these linen towels [here], or this little grain sack pillow [here]. It’s all lovely.

Rustic Farmhouse christmas decor - A great pin for farmhouse & cottage style home decor inspiration.
Rustic Farmhouse christmas decor - A great pin for farmhouse & cottage style home decor inspiration.
Rustic Farmhouse christmas decor - A great pin for farmhouse & cottage style home decor inspiration.
Rustic Farmhouse christmas decor - A great pin for farmhouse & cottage style home decor inspiration.

Rustic Farmhouse christmas decor - A great pin for farmhouse & cottage style home decor inspiration.
Rustic Farmhouse christmas decor - A great pin for farmhouse & cottage style home decor inspiration.
Rustic Farmhouse christmas decor - A great pin for farmhouse & cottage style home decor inspiration.

Ok, I’m done sharing photos of them, but I am truly obsessed with my farmhouse Christmas decor & shopping small so this post is near and dear to my heart. I’ve never had the pleasure of meeting Christine from 1871 farmhouse, & I’m sure after this post I wrote about her she probably thinks I’m a stalker, but her shop is a little slice of heaven & there was something special about ordering handmade Christmas decor from Canada. Maybe because it’s closer to the North Pole? You know, where Santa lives. I think I’ve had too much sugar this Christmas season.. please excuse me. Do you shop small for Christmas decor & Christmas gifts? What are some of your favorite shops? List them below or chat with me on Instagram & Facebook about them.. I would love to find some new ones to shop at! xx

Some of the items I love from 1871 Farmhouse

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Tour our white cottage farm Christmas farmhouse [here]

*Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links, but as ALWAYS all opinions are my very own.

Front Living Room Makeover – The Floors

You guys! Ok, among the crazy busy christmas season at the store & life, Jose and I are trying to make some progress on the farmhouse. When I last did a house update a few weeks ago I said we were about to demo the kitchen [here], well there was a slight change of plans. When we demo the kitchen, that means we will also be demoing the sunroom [here] since it is a “part of the kitchen” technically & that means we will be losing the main living room space we are using at the moment & that sounds down right stressful. SO, the change is that we are going to make our front living room livable [meaning we are getting the floors fixed so we can walk on them] so that we will have a living room to hang out in while the sunroom and kitchen are being remodeled. That might raise the question of why we don’t use our back living room? Though it has a fireplace it is quite cold this time of year & well, frankly that room will be remodeled soon as well. Jose is trying to get me on this whole “one room at a time thing” or the whole “finish a room before you start another” what is that even? I agree with him though I am ready for this room to be done. Here is a little peak at what that looked like before sanding…

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Please excuse the terrible photos in this post, but I don’t think anything I could do could make it look better. The floor s required a lot of sanding and scraping to get them decent looking & ready for painting…

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

& now let’s take it way back to when we moved in…

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& after a lot of sanding and hard work…

Ok, it may not look like much, but trust me.. it’s so much smoother & most importantly ready for paint! It kind of feels like when you do major renovations you take 10 steps back to take one step forward. A little over half of the room has the original flooring from the 1800’s that was covered by subfloor and carpet. When the subfloor and carpet were ripped up we were left with lots of glue on the flooring & we discovered that the last 1/3rd of the room near the fireplace did not have original flooring, but only subfloor. That is when we decided that we were going to paint the flooring to make it all cohesive. BUT we were going to replace the subfloor near the fireplace with boards until we read something that Natalie from Hammade furniture wrote the other day. She wrote about how she hand scraped her subfloor to look like boards before she painted them. Ummm hello! So we thought we would give it a try & Jose hand scarped the subfloor in the living room to resemble boards & so far so good! We are anxious to see what it looks like when we put paint on it, but it will save us a ton of money if it works!

 

So now we need to decide on paint colors. The worst. Here are three colors we kind of played around with, but we weren’t in love. We thought we were wanting a greige or gray taupe, but after sampling them on the floor we are thinking lighter & less gray. Another lesson in “Always sample in the room you will be painting!” This room get’s very little light at the moment with only two small windows in the front, one lead glass window by the stairs, & a front door that let’s little light in [new door coming soon] so I want to keep this room light & bright. I’m thinking a warm creamy white on the floor, but I will be back with what we decide. I actually have butterflies about this because I have ALWAYS wanted a painted wood floor. It’s in my cottage & farmhouse dreams I never thought would come true. So, what do you guys think of our progress. I’m hoping to have the floors painted by the end of the week so stay tuned for updates! Oh, & cross your fingers the whole hand scraped plywood thing works out. I’m a little nervous! Thank you SO MUCH for stopping by the blog today & be sure to follow me over on Instagram & Facebook for behind the scenes. xx

 

See the shiplap progress we have made in this room…

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Click [here] to see the shiplap work we did on the walls.

Rustic Christmas Farmhouse Entryway

I woke up the other day & walked down the stairs to make coffee & noticed our entryway at the bottom of the stairs. I stared at it for a few minutes & realized it still had pumpkins in it from fall, but I hadn’t noticed because all around this one styled area is complete chaos of construction. After getting my cup of coffee I grabbed one simple little Christmas pillow & threw in on the church pew & took the pumpkins away & that was the extent of what I planned to do for christmas decor in the entryway. Well, after finishing my whole cup of coffee this happened…

DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.

DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.

DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.
Yah. I couldn’t stop. Call it caffeine or the fact that I really like to ignore the construction of our fixer upper, but I went a little Christmas crazy & I’m not mad about it. It started with me removing that simple Christmas pillow I had put there an hour before & replaced it with all my favorite christmas pillows like those plaid ones from Pottery Barn, the red ones from Target, & that car pillow [here] that I also picked up at Pottery Barn. I hung some garland from a local greenhouse on the stairs [very unprofessionally, but the messier the better right?] & I also laid some leftover garland on the church pew as well well. The pillows below the pew are Homegoods finds along with the tree on the shelf in the gallery wall. You can see details on the gallery wall [here] in my original post about this space.

DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.

DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.
DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.
DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.
It’s funny that I started out thinking I was only going to throw one pillow in this space for Christmas & that I wouldn’t like this space or share it here on the blog, & look where we ended up. It’s almost like Christmas exploded all over. I guess that’s my advice for today… There is always a point in every project that you think that it’s just a fail, but keep trying new things & usually it eventually turns out to be something you don’t hate. It happens to everyone.. every single time.

DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.
DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.
DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.
DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.

DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.

& a glimpse into this space at night….

DIY Rustic farmhouse christmas entryway - A must pin for farmhouse and cottage style Christmas decor.

So, there it is! Our Christmas entryway. I’m in love because it’s so cozy. The only thing that I purchases for this space this year was the garland. Everything else was already from my Christmas collection which was fun to dig in my old boxes to create this new Christmas spot in our farmhouse. I’m telling you… even though our house is under construction, I will find places to decorate for the holidays! Thank you guys so much for stopping by the blog today & be sure to find me on Facebook & Instagram for more behind the scenes. xx

 

Shop this post:

 

See more of our Christmas decor this year…

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Take our holiday housework [here]

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See how we made this spindle Christmas tree [here]