Home decor · refreshment at home

Home Office Renovation

While many people have recently begun working from home, my husband’s office has been in our home for most of his 40 years of ministry. When we moved into our house eight years ago, we were thrilled that the first room off of the front entry way was an office. God took care of every need!

When a pastor has to have lots of books at easy access, it can really crowd up a room, so I’ve fought with how to make those books accessible and also look lovely, rather than crowded.

My husband is in this space for many hours every single day and I wanted to freshen up this space for him so it would be inviting, bright, and also reflect the things he loves. So one day I just went for it and started piling up books on our dining room and shifting furniture around until I found the best possible arrangement. Keep reading and you can see the amazing results that some simple changes made!

The picture below is the only BEFORE picture I took before I got in there and started my redo. I just get so excited about projects that call for redecorating!! You can get the idea of the old set up, which was that the desk was in front of the window with hopes of looking out on our beautiful view. However, the computer really blocked the view and also kept the window light from coming in. The ceiling light was a builder grade fixture that gave very little brightness and zero beauty!


On the picture below, move the slider over so you can get a feel for the before and after.

The first thing I did was to add the jute rug. I love that it warmed up the space and also added a masculine feel. Then I moved the desk so that it faces the door. It gives it more a feeling of a true office, and I also love that I can see my husband’s face when I walk up the hallway and he’s sitting at his desk!
The print over his desk was found at Hobby Lobby (where else?!). It was part of their spring decor (?) line and I get it 66% off! The mountain scene was perfect!

His leather recliner has just the space needed if he wants to stretch out, or if someone else comes to his office and needs a place to sit and chat. I hung the curtains I already had up a little bit off the window frame to lengthen the window a bit. The view of the mountains and the countryside can now actually be seen from his window!

My husband is an avid hiker and runner, so I hung his medals on the display board beside the bookshelf. The P. Buckley Moss print of the Blue Ridge Parkway is the perfect print for my Scenic Highway husband!

The painting of the old church was done by a gifted artist in SC and gifted to us by his niece, a dear friend of mine! Again, a perfect piece for a pastor’s study. I had tucked this away, looking for the perfect place for it. I’m glad I didn’t just slap it up somewhere because I loved it so much, but waited for the best place where it would be seen. Patience pays off!

I couldn’t get a good shot of the ceiling light that we replaced, but I found a ceiling light at Lowe’s marked down to $20 and it’s so pretty. It adds about 10x’s the light the old one did! What a difference that made!

My husband is really enjoying his new office space and that makes me happy! One day while I was out, he sent me a text saying how much he loved his new space and thanked me for the work I’d put into it. That made it worth it all!

I truly believe the greatest difference in the office was the rearrangement of the furniture. I spent around $25 on the canvas behind the desk, and $180 on the rug. All the other decor was already in our home. Lots of leg and muscle work went into this room when I consider how many books I moved, but again, it was well worth it!

What room do you have that just isn’t drawing you in?

Why not try to refresh that space first with some muscle power of furniture rearrangement? Maybe, like my project, everything else will fall into place easily after you get the placement right!

Tell me what room you’re thinking about changing!

Home decor · refreshment at home

The Easiest Method for Helping Indoor Plants Survive

Real plants in your home can add so much. I’ve gotten to the place where I forage through my yard for the fresh greens to make pretty arrangements, but I’m also adding some live plants.

I went to Lowe’s recently to look at succulents, and while I was there, I found a beautiful little fern that had a little wick at the bottom of its pot. That wick is how the plant gets its water! You place the plant into a reservoir with water in it. As the wick sits in the water, the plant will draw up as much water as it needs! This eliminates the fear of over or under-watering!

This system is perfect for anyone who wants to make having live plants easier. It’s also perfect for caring for your plants while on vacation. You can purchase these plants all ready for you with the wick system in place (my little plant was $5). You can also purchase the wick and add it to all your house plants!

ORIMERC 30 feet 1/6 inch Self Watering Capillary Wick Cord Vacation Plant Sitter DIY Hydroponic Wicking Self-Watering Planter Pot Automatic Water
This is $3.99 on Amazon and has 30 feet of wick! That would take care of a LOT of plants!

I put the mirror behind the plant to double the visual impact of this fern on my bedside table.

Silk ferns and ivy will NEVER find their way back into my house after finding these beauties!

Refresh your greenery in your home with some real greenery…even if you don’t have a green thumb! The wick system takes all the guess work out of growing plants!

Have you ever heard of the Wick Plants? Does this make you think you could have a live plant in your home and not kill it?!

Walk closely to Christ. Give Him your cares and have a lovely weekend.

Family life · refreshment at home · Refreshment in marriage · Rest · Sabbatical

Fun, Family and Finishing Strong

Who doesn’t love a week full of fun and family? That describes our last week of sabbatical so well, but it’s also a reminder of a truth I hope to pass on to you. Stay tuned.

You might think that 30 days of sabbatical would fly by, but the Lord answered my prayer and allowed it to go nice and slow. What a blessing that was! We enjoyed each day to the max and allowed ourselves time to rest, spend time together as a couple, and focus on what the Lord wanted to teach us as we got ready to head back into ministry.

When we got to the last week, we celebrated our 40th anniversary. My husband did a fantastic job planning our celebration and took me to Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse.
Oh. My. Goodness.
What a special time it was!

The food was amazing!

The setting was gorgeous!

We got to take our time and enjoy every bite and every minute. We were at the restaurant for about three hours! We cried as we shared memories from our 40 years of marriage during the meal. I told my husband they were going to think we hated our food because of our tears!! It was a truly magical day, full of love for each other, fun times and many blessings!

Ready for our dinner at Ruth’s Chris!

This last week allowed us to enjoy an early July 4th celebration with Paul and Whitney in their adorable small town. It was so patriotic and fun!! There was beautiful music, Uncle Sam on stilts, and parachutists jumping out of airplanes with flags making for a great event!

We went home early in the evening, then later drove to a parking lot nearby to enjoy their fireworks. It was perfect!

We also got to see Paul in his work setting, which was super fun.

The last church we visited was Paul and Whitney’s. What a blessing to worship together and hear the sound preaching of the Word! After the service we went to a lovely little restaurant, The Bleu Porch, in their town and enjoyed a fabulous brunch! My Stuffed French Toast with warm Blueberry Sauce was delicious, but having brunch together as a family was even sweeter!

We spent the last few days at some quiet spots – lakes and mountains vistas – where we could reflect about what the Lord had spoken into our hearts. We did much journaling so as not to forget our lessons and the changes we each needed to make.

This mountain view is more amazing than this picture shows!

Now here we are nearly a whole month later! I’m enjoying the new schedule the Lord guided me to practice. My days and weeks are full, but the Lord is so gracious to allow times of rest just when I need it most!

Even without a sabbatical, we can each find times to rest. Even when dinner is not Ruth’s Chris, but grilled hot dogs, we can find time to be together as a family! Simple events can bring the fun life needs when days are tough. Ladies, we’re often the one who needs to create the fun, so let’s get planning! We need one another!

I’d also encourage you to find regular times to unplug, be still, and listen to the Lord through His Word and in prayer. We are not meant to run on empty without time with the Lord and minimal time in His Word. We need Him!

What do you have planned to refresh your heart? How will you refresh your family?

Unplug and have some fun family time this weekend!

Cleaning · refreshment at home · summertime

Back Porch Refresh

Now that things are warming up, we are spending more time on our back porch once again. This is an outdoor room that we just love and use a LOT! But like every other room, it needed a spring cleaning! I was amazed at how much better everything looked after I scrubbed down every inch of this space. Not sure why I’d never considered the need for a deep spring cleaning out there! Oh, I always wiped down the tables and wash the linens, but it needed lots more!

The rug and the concrete nearly sparkle now, but they were caked with dried worms and debris!
  • First I pulled everything out of this space except for the swing.
  • Using the hose, I gave the concrete slab a cleaning, using the spray nozzle on high. I had to go over it several times to remove all the dried worms (!), and bird mess!
  • Using soapy water, I washed down all the chairs, the swing, the posts on the porch, and the siding on the house.
  • I sprayed both sides of the outdoor rug. It looks brand new (see picture below). These outdoor rugs are worth the price! They really take the weather and all the elements well! I got mine at Lowe’s.
  • The glass door was washed.
  • All the summer toys were inspected, and then either put back in place or were pitched to be replaced.
  • My swing cushion is on its way to the laundry mat this week.
  • I added annuals to my containers.

Everything looks and feels so clean and inviting! I only wish I had taken a before photo, but I hope that my “after” pictures will inspire you to scrub down your porches, too!

I am looking to replace the cushions on my furniture. We store them away during the winter, but they have a weird feeling that doesn’t wipe off. Do you have outdoor cushions that you love? I’d be so thankful for your suggestions!

Later this week my front porch will get the same treatment! Do you need to refresh your porches for summertime?