Wow guys, it’s been a while. I’ve been meaning to post the after photos of our bedroom, but with my training for the Leadville 100 taking precedence, the blog had been put on the back burner way longer than I imagined. Now that my training is over for the year, it’s time for more blogging! If you remember this post about my inspiration and our before photos of our bedroom, I talked about how I had envisioned a very minimal bedroom for us… well it has been done for many months and I’m excited to finally share the after photos with ya’ll. I love how the acacia floors we put in are almost the exact match to the rest of the living room floors that were installed by the prior owners. I now feel like the main living space has a more cohesive look with the same flooring throughout and not chopped up by the dirty carpet. We finally bit the bullet and purchased a real bed frame after we moved in last year. Such an adult purchase, but one I hope will last years! I repurposed our old side tables and painted them black to match our other accents like our amazing ceiling fan and sconces. We had kept some left over wood from when Zach had built our dining room table and I felt like our bedroom needed that touch of rusticness to it, so I put together this simple DIY table that helps bring together our small mountain gallery wall. With the bed centered under the window, I always felt like the space on either side was super awkward when it was left bare, so I found these beautiful lanterns and bought some brass chain from Ace Hardware to hang them from the ceiling. One has a huge air plant in it from Ironwood, and the other has a white candle in it. Since the lanterns were a little pricey and I wanted to depart from my need to have symmetry in every room, I ended up doing another DIY inspired from this post on the right side of the bed. So easy and cheap! Of all the design elements in this room, I had the hardest time picking out a rug, which shouldn’t surprise me by now since almost every room that I’ve decorated in this house or in our Michigan home, finding the “right” rug always stumps me. I wanted to bring in more color, but didn’t want it overly loud, so I decided to go more the “traditional” route with this navy rug that coordinated with our our navy linen duvet. Overall, the design is relatively simple and clean, which creates a very stress free atmosphere. What do you guys think? This was one of the first rooms we had officially finished this year, so I’m stoked to share how the rest of our house is progressing as we’ve come a long way since February!
Despite all the hard, long hours that go into renovating a home, I truly love the process. From seeing the hidden potential, culling Pinterest for inspiration, to getting your hands dirty and body aching from a weekend of putting in new floors… I delight in seeing our hard work come to life. I’ve always viewed the bedroom as a place that would put me at ease at night, that didn’t contain the distractions the kitchen or living room might. A place that was beautiful, yet very simple and clean. The above images were my source for that look I wanted – an organic modern bedroom. The previous owners took great care of the house, but had filled it with too much “stuff.” I knew the bedroom would feel bigger and updated once we had less furniture and a fresh coat of white paint on the walls.
Our bedroom has good bones, but until you start diving into the projects, you never know what you get into. Within the first month, we ripped out the carpet, lament, old lighting, and started taking down some panelling. The goal was to put in acacia hardwood flooring so all the bedrooms would match the living room and hallways, while removing any panelling and poorly spackled walls. During this reno, we ran into a bit of a problem with the panelling on the south wall, which caused us to have to re-drywall the entire section… it wasn’t pretty under the panelling, but glad we were able to fix it, instead of just “living with it.” Below are just a few images of the bedroom “in progress.”
Once the drywall was up, walls painted (in my favorite Super White by Benjamin Moore), floors put in, and trim installed, we slowly started to figure out what the heck we were going to do with our awkward closets. Looking at closet systems, I just couldn’t justify the price and hassle to install them. After seeing several cool IKEA hacks for the Tarva dressers, we opted to go this route since we want to eventually put in french doors to hid our messy wardrobes.
With the Tarva dressers to work on, doors to install, and just a few more minor decorations to add, it’s almost complete. Stay tune for the after photos of the bedroom and more house progress posts soon!
The journey towards “finding home” translates very differently for all folks. For me, I’ve come to the terms that home is sacred; I have to have a place of my own that equates stability, quietude, and overall relaxation. As we have slowly settled into our new place (only to rip it all up again a week later) I couldn’t help thinking that after three years in our last home in Michigan, I had never felt as comfortable as I did that first week in our Colorado home. Maybe it had something to do with the size (this new place is about half the square footage and much cozier), that the projects will not take us three years to accomplish, or the fact that I don’t have to try to bend this house to match my taste… looking past all that, I really think it’s about a new perspective. We are putting down these roots that we hope will last a long time, that this place will be here for us as basecamp while we spend time outside of it going on grand adventures.
Below are photos of our new place prior to closing with the previous owner’s belongings. It’s already been well over month, but it’s already been transformed quite a bit. Can’t wait to share more soon!
*Photos by Cherry Creek Properties LLC
Probably one of the top things that a lady in her late twenties never wants to think about or even consider having is a heart problem. For someone who is extremely active, eats a mostly plant based diet, and takes exceptional pride in my health in general, having to see a cardiologist was something that I thought I’d never have to do. About a month ago I started experiencing pretty intense heart palpitations. I’d try to go to sleep or be working and I’d feel a fluttery feeling slowly start to come on, followed by a heavy irregular heart beat. It freaked me out. After this continued for about two weeks, I realized it wasn’t just going to go away and needed to see a doctor stat. On my mother’s side mitral valve prolapse and Wolf-Parkinson-White conditions are prevalent, so I was extremely nervous that I was just now experiencing some symptoms of these, but in the back of my mind I kept telling myself, “Kate, you are way to freaking stressed, it has to be just that.” So after many vials of blood drawn, having an EKG & echocardiogram performed, and wearing a heart monitor for a few days, the doctors ruled out any problems associated with my blood tests and my heart… leaving, as I had guessed, a major stress and anxiety problem. I was floored to realize how much stress & anxiety had taken a toll physically on my body, that it had literally created irregular heart beats which had in turn stressed me out even more! Over the course of that week I thought about myself more, trying to figure out when and why I had become this stressed. I had seen fragments of stress/anxiety that usually resulted from my perfectionism earlier in my life, but nothing ever this severe. It didn’t take long for me to basically boil it down to coming out to Colorado, a place where we had dreams of “slowing down” and enjoying the mountains. For as much as we have taken advantage of those mountains, it all has seem to come at a compromise to what I had envisioned our life being like out here. I don’t want to say I’m thankful I’ve had these heart palpitations, because I’m not, but I am grateful for the lessons it so quickly shared with me. When compromising my life, my goals, and my dreams creates added stress – enough is enough. I’ve decided it’s time to reclaim my life. It’s time for me to be a little selfish, to put my foot down, and to say “NO.” It’s time for a lesson on self love and making time for myself. I’ve spent time thinking about what I need to de-stress and manage my anxiety, most of which means taking more “me time” seriously. Below is stress management tips and how I like to practice some self love.
1. Quiet Time: As an introvert, having that space or quiet time to myself is extremely important and it’s something I have neglected immensely. For me, it’s decompressing after work for a solo run, cooking by myself, reading before bed, crafting, or just walking our dog.
2. Spoil Yourself: Retail therapy is really a thing people. For me, I love window shopping, not necessarily spending lots of money. It seems to provide sources of inspiration, relaxation, and just a way to zone out for me. Treating yourself to a spa day (either professionally or just at home) is a easy way to refocus on yourself. The above DIY scrub is one of my many handmade body products I love using.
3. Meditate: Whether it’s thru yoga, praying, or breathing techniques, I always feel mentally rejuvenated after a mindful meditation session. My co-worker recently recommended the Headspace app, which walks you thru how to mediate anywhere, anytime.
4. Quality Sleep: I’m a huge proponent of sleep – quality sleep, and lots of it! I know without a doubt my career, health, and running would suffer immensely if I didn’t get at least 8 hours of sleep each night. Whenever I’ve been sick, stressed, or just overworked, getting a few 10 hour nights of sleep on the weekends does wonders for my body and soul.
5. Less Stimulus: This is probably the hardest for me, but I’m actively trying to step away from my computer and phone – to leave work at work, to stop wasting time browsing the internet, and not giving two shits about social media. Work is probably the most arduous, but if it comes between a promotion and my physical well being, the body is always going to come first. I think half of the battle is knowing and understanding that I’ll always tend to be an anxious person, and that I don’t handle stress the same way others do. This is the game of life, trying to figure out yourself and how to make it all “work.” So how do you handle stress? I’d love to hear other ways I can practice self love and stress management. DIY Body Scrub
– ½ cup coconut oil
– ½ cup turbinado sugar
-Zest of half an orange & half a lemon
-Touch of juice from zested orange
– 4 drops of eucalyptus essential oil
Whip coconut oil and sugar together in a mixer, until light a fluffy. Stir in zest and add essential oil. Keep in fridge to prevent from melting.
The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while DARING GREATLY. // Theodore Roosevelt
In some capacity in our lives, we all strive to dare greatly. To push past all odds, to defy those challenges that others said couldn’t be done, and to be willing to take chances you might not feel comfortable taking. As an overachiever and perfectionist, my constant internal battle goes something like this, “DO MORE. BE MORE. MORE. MORE. MORE!” But, is that really daring greatly? Is attempting to pile more on your plate and perfecting your life really what Theodore Roosevelt was talking about? No. Somewhere in the past two years I realized that my perfectionism had to stop. That in order to drive myself forward I’d need to make some changes. I’d have to become more vulnerable. I’d have to take some major leaps.
Problem is, I’ve never been a risk taker.
Yes, I’m adventurous. Yes, I’m willing to try new things. Fearless risk taker? No, that is not words I’d describe me. If the journey is within my comfort zone I’m all for it. The minute that uncertainty comes creeping in… I’m out. I struggled for years trying to figure out how to get past this. How does one change deep feelings of anxiety? How do you move forward into the unknown? For me, my husband was that bridge. When it came time to be daring, he basically pushed me over the edge. With time, my perception of the ambiguous faded; they became grand adventures.
So we decided the next adventure would be to migrate out west, to Colorado. Packing up my car with the final remnants of my life in Michigan, it dawned on me how calm I felt. I was moving clear across the country to a place where I knew no one! I didn’t have a job and had no clue what my life would look like once I arrived; so why didn’t this scare the shit out of me? It felt freeing and confusing at the same time. What had changed in me? Where was anxious Kate?
Several weeks into the move I started reading Brené Brown’s novel, Daring Greatly, when her words hit me full force. “I define vulnerability as uncertainty, risk and emotional exposure.” This was why I had felt that calm; I had pulled out the vulnerability card and was letting myself be exposed to a world that I had never known. Her words confirmed my perfectionist traits had hindered this process for most of my life. In a world of imperfect people and objects, I will never succeed if I try to make those things around me perfect. It’s not gonna happen. So I remind myself, “Imperfections are not inadequacies; they are reminders that we’re all in this together.”
Do I still struggle with trying to create a spotless world around me? Oh yes, and I probably always will. But in order to succeed, to pursue my dreams, and create a happy life, I will have to continue to relinquish that control, unearth my vulnerability, and know that “Hey, it’s okay if it’s not perfect. Move forward.”
Sometimes, a fresh start is all anyone needs. So onward, to daring greatly in Colorado.
1. Cut four equal lengths of 96 inches cotton rope (depending on the size of your planter, you might need to add length or just cut off the excess at the end) I used cotton rope from Hobby Lobby.
2. String the rope through a metal ring and make sure it is located in the center.
3. Tie a knot and make sure it is really tight (double knot if needed). You will now have eight pieces that are 48 inches long.
4. Measure 16 inches down from the ring and tie two pieces of rope together. Make sure these pieces are laying right next to each other. Repeat until you have four knots.
5. Measure 8 inches down from one of the knots taking one piece of string and connecting it to a another piece of string in the knot that lays next to it. You will eventually form a circle of knots after all eight pieces of string are knotted.
6. Measure another 8 inches down and gather all of the pieces together and form a knot.
7. Place the pot in the middle of the holder with the knot in the center of the plant pot base.
Have you ever made your own hanging plant holder? Suggestions on the best plants to put in one? I’m anxious to make another holder for our butler’s pantry soon!