Monday, August 6

3 Tips for a Great Kids Birthday

I love birthdays. Always have, always will. It's a good thing since we're getting to have a quite a few birthdays around here. In fact we just finished prepping for another one, so I thought this would be the perfect time to share how we do birthdays at More Like Home!


Over the last few years I've found there are really three keys to  making an amazing birthday that we all enjoy but all of it really boils down to this - it's completely un-pinterest-worthy. Because we don't do the pinterest big three: 1. elaborate decorations 2. themed party favors 3. a big party *gasp*  But we do our very best to make it a super special day for the birthday boy. And we do have lots of fun, lots of memories, and very few regrets. So here are the More Like Home top three birthday planning tips:

Monday, July 30

Sweet & Simple Play Kitchen Plans

Kids love toys. And moms love beautiful toys. So this post is for all the parents out there just as much as it's for the kids! Today we're sharing plans for this sweet and simple little play kitchen. 


Any parent knows how easily toys can overrun a home. Part of that comes from the number of toys (which is why we do a toy purge several times a year to help keep the clutter down), but sometimes we overlook how much the style of toys impacts our home. We know toys will be left out during the day. No doubt about that. But when those toys are easy on the eyes, they feel more like part of the decor and less like a mess. In fact, some toys are so pretty we leave them out full time! We have a set of wooden dump trucks from a yard sale that live on the window seat in our living room. They get played with every.single.day. because they are right there in front of the boys, and I don't mind seeing them out one bit!


But let's be real, not all of our toys are so simplistic and beautiful. Not by a long shot. We have a whole herd of beloved PJ mask toys that get just as much play time as this kitchen. But we've found any step we can take in that direction (especially with larger pieces like a kitchen) helps make our house feel more calm and put-together. Even with a play kitchen in the dining room.

Wednesday, July 11

DIY Mantle Revamp (how to wrap an outdated mantle with new wood)

Part 1 of my nesting-driven fireplace makeover was adding a shiplap accent around the top, but it still looked a little sad with a glossy black painted mantle. Not my jam, and not working with our farmhouse vibe. So part 2 of the process was returning the mantle to a beautiful wood finish!

You can find all the "before" photos and the rest of our nesting plans here


I would have loved to restore it back to the original wood, but that just didn't turn out to be a feasible option for us. There was nick in the corner of the mantle where we could see at least four layers of paint - black, green, brown, and beige - and we still couldn't see the wood!


Whether we sanded it or stripped it, we would be looking at a huge mess. So we decided to start with a clean slate and wrap the entire mantle with new wood. It worked out great!


I love how it plays with the new shiplap for a more casual farmhouse vibe. And you can do it, too! This is also a great option if you want to cover a concrete or brick mantle to add a little contrast to you fireplace. Want to give it a try?


Tuesday, June 19

DIY Shiplap Fireplace

Sometimes I just need a little kick in the pants to get a project done. Or a little bun in the oven. I've wanted to update our fireplace ever since we moved in (two years ago) but it wasn't until this spring when I was in full pregnancy nesting mode that I finally decided "I AM DOING THIS. RIGHT NOW." Naturally the "I" translated to "husband" because we were in the late-pregnancy stage of nesting. And he isn't one to let his round wife balance on a chair with a nail gun. He's a keeper.

And so, with a little help, we managed to check it off my nesting to-do list just in time before our newest guy was born. (you can see my entire living room nesting to-do list here, and how we wrapped the mantle here) One of my favorite details is the faux shiplap we installed above the fireplace.


I love the texture and charm it adds to the living room. I've always dreamed of a casual, cozy space for our family to gather, and I feel like this was a step in the right direction.


Here's a little "before" action. Just drywall painted the same gray as our walls.


Now it's even lighter, brighter, and totally beautiful. And I really need a full-fireplace photo. Not gonna lie, I probably shot close up because the floor was a hot mess. But I don't really remember. Because newborns don't sleep. It's all a blur.



The best part is the whole project only cost about $15 for wood! We also had to buy nails for our nail gun (I lost that price in the newborn-blur). But we saved a few dollars on paint by using the leftover from our cabinets... which doesn't quite match exactly, but that's a problem for another pregnancy.
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