Guest Room to Music Studio Update

Our basement is currently a mess. We are updating the bathroom, so there is wood everywhere, and we are planning a yard sale, so there is junk treasure everywhere, and we are changing the purpose of the guest room, so there is furniture everywhere. Congratulations, you’re about to get a preview of our mess.

I’ve mentioned it before, but Jeremy & I are musical people. I was a commercial voice major and he was an audio engineering major in college. As a result, I can sing and he can record it. It’s a great little system. But, we haven’t had a good space for that in quite a while. It’s a lot easier to get stuff done if there is a place to go rather than trying to set up a makeshift studio on the kitchen table when it’s time to record something.

Long term, we are going to finish out our garage and make it into our Master bedroom, move the guests upstairs, and have the studio in the current guest room.

For now, we are just going to convert the “guest room” into a studio space, move the guest bed upstairs to the room where I keep my clothes (temporarily), and keep saving our pennies for the garage conversion.

Here is what the spare basement room looked like in our house listing…
House Tour - All Precious & Pleasant

And what it looked like as a guest room after we painted it “Natural Linen” by Benjamin Moore and added some curtains and colorful bedding.
House Tour - All Precious & Pleasant

And now we’ve gone full circle. Back to white on three walls (White Dove by Benjamin Moore) with an accent wall in a blue-teal-green-gray color (Knoxville Gray by Benjamin Moore). The guest bed is staying in this room until after Easter when we have family coming in town, and then we will continue with the changes.
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I purchased this rug from West Elm…
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And if you follow me on Instagram, you’ve seen this piano that we are in the process of converting into Jeremy’s desk…
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And with the red accents that will come in through his instruments and some pops of color, and hopefully the purchase of a love seat or settee, I think it will come together quite nicely. Here is a mood board I created.
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I’m excited to give that bed a new place and make this room into something functional where we can easily go to demo songs and be creative!

 

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Boring to Beautiful. Little changes for when you don’t know how to start.

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I showed you all my master bedroom reveal a couple of weeks ago, so I figured I would take a day to talk about some things I learned while updating the space. This wasn’t a major overhaul with any architectural or structural changes to the room. This was just a matter of updating. Something anyone can do with any room to take it from A to B.
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Lots of things matter. Color scheme, accessories, paint color, etc. But here are a few places to start when you don’t know where to start.

How can you take your room from boring to refined? Here are a few little tips.

1. Hang those curtains high and wide. 

This makes me feel like I should be at a line dance, and instead of “swing your partner side to side,” I click my boots and say “hang your curtains high and wide.” I’m from Texas. Maybe that’s why.

But have you seen this diagram? 
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Curtains make a big difference. In our room, I chose some simple white curtains from Home Goods for around $12 a panel. It’s more difficult to find curtains at longer lengths (I think these are 95″ panels), but Home Goods usually has some good neutral options. Then, I replaced the generic mini blinds with bamboo blinds from Home Depot. I had no idea what a big difference it would make (and I didn’t get a good “before” photo of the windows), but wow! Floor to ceiling curtains and anything but mini blinds automatically make the room feel grander and more put together.

2. The Two Little Shelves 
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Bring life to walls with shelving instead of traditional art. It is a great way to draw attention, showcase curios, and combine art with functionality. The best part is that you can generally shop your house. I didn’t buy anything new to fill these shelves!
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Some of my favorite items from the shelving:
1. Piano art. Many of my favorite local coffee shops in Nashville showcase local artists, and I spotted this gorgeous piece several years ago when Jeremy & I were still dating. I called the artist on display and ordered a custom mounting of the photograph as a birthday gift for my (then) boyfriend. It’s really special!
2. Painted empty frame. Thrift store frame. Removed the glass. Spray painted gold. That’s all.
3. Gold and blue canvas. I found this canvas in a stash of old art supplies and pulled out some spare paint I had on hand. I did this in about 10 minutes while talking on the phone. That’s how easy it was. You could do it too.
4. Hydrangeas. These are dried hydrangeas that I clipped from our backyard last summer. I love how hydrangeas dry! They have brought me joy for months and months, and I have moved them around from room to room.
5. Peony art. This is the front of our RSVP card from our wedding. The peony was the theme flower for our wedding, and my sweet best friend hand watercolored that flower as part of our stationery. I treasure it, and I love the pop of color it adds to the shelves.
6. Iron bird. Flea market find.
7. Books. One of my favorite decorating tips. Use old books in your color scheme. I have them all over the house. 

3. Lighting Matters. 

It is incredible what a $12 lamp shade did for our little room. Sometimes the light is one of the last things you think about when it’s bland or outdated, but it makes a huge statement when it is updated.
**This photo is pre-curtains and art on the walls, but it is a good showcase of the ceiling light.
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4. When in doubt, get a rug. 
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I lucked out with a gently used $320 Dash & Albert rug for $50 at a yard sale. Seriously, it was one of my favorite finds ever. I had no plans for a rug in our room, but once I placed it under the bed, I realized how much rugs matter. It grounds the room, brings everything together, and makes a subtle statement. That has been the case with every rug in our house. Hard to bite the bullet and spend the cash, but worth it. So worth it.

I also scored a West Elm rug for $50 a couple of weeks ago. Can’t wait to show you where that is going!

So, let’s recap. When you don’t know how to breathe life into a room, here are a few ideas.

1. Curtains. Hang ‘em high and wide. 
2. Wall shelving in lieu of just art 
3. Update your lighting. 
4. Get a rug. 

Done. And done.

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Springtime Dreamer

Doesn’t Spring give you hope? I’ve never been so excited about Spring as I am this year. With a yard of our own, I can watch Spring coming out of the ground and budding on plants daily. We have had several nights of Spring thunderstorms, and I absolutely love the pounding rain on the roof as I drift asleep and the waking up to see the ground even greener than it was before the rain.
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Spring fills my soul and drives me to action. As the world wakes up again, so does my gumption, and I have been in full-on hustle mode of late. Contrastingly, you all have been hearing crickets on the blog.

So this is just a little note to say that I am working. On my dreams, on my passions, on my job, on my house, on my marriage, on my relationship with God. I’ve been absorbing inspiring non-fiction, praying like crazy, writing lots of songs (I can’t wait to share soon), making to-do lists a mile long, and feeling so hopeful/anxious/burdened/excited/giddy about the future (poor Jeremy has to deal with THAT mess of emotions).

But, in this season of life, that means I am a little bit quieter on the world wide web. And I feel ok about that. So, this isn’t exactly an apology.

But, I LOVE BLOGGING. It is a necessary outlet for my soul. So, I’m still here, but I’m also everywhere else. So, this Spring, I will be probably blogging only when I have something to say. A project to share. An important thought. Maybe once a week instead of three times a week. Maybe four times one week and none the next. We will see.

I have 100 projects happening in my house right now, but none of them are ready to share with you yet. And I’m so busy putting up paneling and painting accent walls that I haven’t had time to write about it, but I just wanted to check in (because I went a whole week without a single post! Eee gads!)
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I love you all. And I love Spring. And I love seasons of learning and growth.

Don’t you?

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For The Road Wives (and their friends)

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As the summer sun set gracefully beyond the Texas sky, I held tightly to my brand new husband’s arm as we reveled in the memories of our honeymoon and set off into life together. We had just landed in my home town from the Riviera Maya the day before, and we packed up our new (used) SUV and carted all of our wedding gifts off to Tennessee to start life in our cookie cutter two bedroom apartment on the south side of town. The Mexican sun had left a glow on our faces that reflected the incommunicable joy inside our young hearts and the two bands of shiny bling on my left hand.

As I pictured life eternal with this man, I envisioned lazy Saturday mornings with breakfasts in bed, coming home to his hugs every night, date nights, sleepovers, and relishing in every significant life event hand in hand. I didn’t picture the days spent alone at home, the texts goodnight instead of toes touching under the covers, the innumerable Sundays attending church by myself, the mowing the lawn because he is gone every weekend, the struggle to find friends because it’s weird going on double dates alone but I’m also not single.

I don’t say these things to complain. In fact, my marriage is happier than I could have ever asked for. My wonderful husband is worth every single moment at home while he is traveling, and I wouldn’t trade this season. I say it because I know I’m not the only one who has been here. And, keep reading, because I say this so that friends of road wives know how to be friends of road wives. 

My husband has a job that takes him on the road nearly half of the year (in intervals of a few days at a time). When I married my hunky guy, I knew what was coming. I was prepared for him to travel, but that doesn’t mean it’s been easy all the time.

Disclaimer: I know some people have it much worse than I do. Maybe your spouse is in the military, and you don’t see him/her for months on end. My heart goes out to you, and I know I will probably never experience that kind of separation. Perhaps you still haven’t found your future guy or girl, and you’re thinking, “Why is she complaining? At least she has someone!” Well…you’re right. And he rocks, and I hope you will find your forever someone someday soon! And I hope he stays in town, but if not, this is for the future you.

We live in a town where traveling spouses are quite common because half of the music industry sets off on tour buses every weekend. We, as a city, send a handful of our best and brightest musicians off around the country to grace all of you.

Many of my friends have husbands who travel or husbands who used to travel before they settled down and started making babies. I have found solidarity in those friends, but I also realize that sometimes being married with a traveling spouse can make you feel isolated. As I mentioned previously, it’s a weird fit because when your hubby or wifey is on the road, you are neither single with roommates nor thrilled to do couple things with other couples, so it can be easy to just sit at home alone. I thought a blog post might lift your spirits today as it lifts mine in writing.

You see, the life you live right now isn’t all bad. God has given you a partner to do forever with, and you are one lucky duck. There are some really awesome things about this stage of life, and I want to share what I have learned. Also, I am a wife so I will probably use pronouns accordingly. Feel free to substitute “wife” everywhere I say “husband” if you find the roles reversed.
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Reasons To Be Grateful When Your Spouse Travels

1. You both get things to look forward to

I love having things to get excited about. I make plans just so I can look forward to them, so every time that Jeremy leaves, it is just one more time that I get to look forward to his return.

Also, it’s pretty fun being the thing waiting for him at the end of a long business trip. It’s a joy to plan out fancy meals, surprise him by doing something for him (like raking leaves. So glamorous), and make our home a place to which he wants to come home.

2. Date nights are more special

Every night we spend apart makes the nights together that much more special and intentional. Hanging out on the couch becomes such a joy. A night out together is cause for rejoicing. Also, because I accomplish so much on the days when he is away, I feel the freedom to give him my full attention when he is home.

3. You have built-in alone time and time with the Lord

I think I am an introvert in an extrovert shell. I am very chatty, wordy, and social. You may have met me and thought, “Oh. I bet she is an extrovert!” But I need alone time to thrive. I find energy in time spent by myself. In fact, this morning I woke up late and didn’t get my usual hour and a half alone to start my day, and I have been off all day. Seriously. Talk about wrong side of the bed. When Jeremy is gone, I get evenings to myself and lots of time to work things out with Jesus. I get to wake up early and go on a hike if I want or read a book if I want or watch Pride & Prejudice or Anne of Green Gables without hearing complaints from my action-movie-preferring other half.

Because of that time, I am fueled up for uninterrupted and devoted time with my Jeremy. And we both have benefited from the time apart to grow our own personal passions and relationships with God in this early season of our marriage. Now, I pray this won’t be forever and look forward to a different season when every day is together, and in that season, I will find my alone time elsewhere, but I appreciate the little blessing now.

4. You can find a new hobby!

If I didn’t have things I loved, I would probably go crazy. I have found things that give me joy like home decor, wedding coordinating, and my favorite…songwriting. These are all hobbies & dreams that I have a lot more time to pursue when Jeremy is away. In fact, I have had friends ask, “how do you have time to constantly do house projects and write a blog and keep up with other things?”

Answer: my hubby travels.

5. You can learn skills like using an electric drill

It is easy to want to wait for Jeremy’s assistance to do things like use the drill, mow the yard, or unclog the drain, but sometimes…I just can’t. So I am now a master driller, mower, fixer girl. Well…sort of. I’m still scared of drywall anchors.

6. You can be an encourager. 

Road life is draining. Often times, Jeremy comes home for just 48 hours, and all he wants to do is sit, but did I mention he is also working toward a seminary degree? So he works hard on the road, and then comes home to work hard again, answer emails, and tend to his emotional wife who has missed him.

And I get to be his encourager. I get to pray for him, to love on him, to take care of him, to help him, and to send him messages that remind him I am proud of him, and that I think he is the best husband ever and that he is doing such good work in his career.

I don’t always do a good job, but it is a privilege to be his cheerleader.

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Yes, there are blessings, but it is also really hard sometimes. 

Sometimes I cry and cuddle my kittens, and they cuddle back but they don’t know what to say to make me feel better (“meow” just doesn’t cut it). Sometimes I get mad because I am sick of being alone so much. Sometimes I take it out on Jeremy because I don’t know what else to do. Sometimes I sit alone at home way too often because it’s easier than finding someone to hang out with.

So, here are my tips on how to be friends with a road wife.

1. Don’t tell her how sorry you feel for her. 

“I don’t know how you do it.”
“I could never do that. My husband and I don’t ever spend time apart.”
“I feel so bad for you.”

I understand your sentiment, and I’m jealous that you never spend time apart from your spouse, but this is not helpful.

2. Do invite her to do things. 

I have always been the initiator friend–the girl who thinks of the ideas and plans and sends out the invites, and it does make it easier for me when it comes to filling time when Jeremy is away, but I so appreciate invitations to do things…even if I can’t.

So keep asking your road wife friend to go places…or just go over one night and hang out on her couch. It makes a huge difference. 

3. Do ask how she is doing.

And genuinely care. It’s just nice for someone to ask.

4. Do invite them to do things together. 

Jeremy is gone quite a bit, but not all the time, and when he is home, we crave intentional community with other married (and not married) folks. So invite your friends to hang out together, and if one is gone, they can say so, but they will love that you thought of them.

That’s all I got. This was a very long post, but thanks for sticking around. And thank you to all of my friends who are so fabulous and make me feel loved even when Jeremy is away. You rock my socks off.

And to all you road wives, solidarity, sisters. Keep your chin up, pray for your husband, and think positive. You are strong and awesome and God has cool things in store for your marriage. I can feel it.

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P.S. Thanks for reading. If you like this post, you may also like…

Why My Imperfect Marriage Is Better Than a Fairytale Ending
or
A Work In Progress

 

Posted in Our Life | 3 Comments

Master Bedroom Reveal

If you’ve been keeping up with the blog of late, you’ve seen several updates to our master bedroom. I made a few more changes, and I think I can officially call this a “reveal” as all the boxes have been checked and I am calling it done…for now. You never know when the mood for change will strike once again!
Today, I’m going to let the pictures do all the talking. Later, I can share more details about how each part came together.

Master Bedroom Reveal - All Precious & Pleasant Blog
Master Bedroom Reveal - All Precious & Pleasant Blog
Master Bedroom Reveal - All Precious & Pleasant Blog
Master Bedroom Reveal - All Precious & Pleasant Blog
Master Bedroom Reveal - All Precious & Pleasant BlogSources:
Wall Color: Stonington Gray by Benjamin Moore
Ceiling Color: White Dove by Benjamin Moore
Ceiling Light Shade: Home Goods (See DIY)
Rug: Dash & Albert  (Found at a yard sale)
Starburst Mirror: DIY
Bed & Dresser: Hand me downs
Bedspread & Navy Shams: Anthropologie Rosette Quilt  (Color no longer available)
Euro Shams: West Elm Organic Sparrow Song
Rectangular Throw Pillow: Home Goods
Throw Blanket: Pottery Barn 
Curtains: Home Goods
Bamboo Blinds: Home Depot (Providence)
Bench: Free & DIY Reupholstered
Nightstands: Thrift Store/DIY
Lamps: Home Goods

Just for a little reminder about the progress of the room…
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DIY Starburst Mirror

Starburst Mirror DIY
Making progress on our bedroom. Let’s see where we stand:

- New bed pillows
- Paint ceiling white
- New light
- Paint nightstands
- Art behind the bed
- Cover bench
- Mount wall shelves
- Curtains
- Bamboo Blinds
- Accessorize!

Today: art behind the bed.

Starburst mirrors are trendy. I have been eyeing them online for a while now, but I don’t understand why they are so expensive!
Starburst Mirror DIY

So, I set out to make my own, and I ran across this tutorial from Tucker Up! I pretty much followed her tutorial, so be sure to skip over there for more details, but the one thing she didn’t cover was how to hang it on the wall, so I added that to my little instructions.

What you will need:
A 10″ round mirror (from Michael’s or Hobby Lobby) – $3.00
Gold spray paint – $3.00
2 100 packs of skewers – $2.00 ($0.98 a piece)
10″ plywood circle (from Michael’s or Hobby Lobby) – $1.00
Hot glue
Wood glue

Total cost: $9.00
DIY Starburst Mirror for $10 or less!

Use this template and glue it to the back of the mirror with whatever glue you have on hand (I used basic craft glue).

Then measure an inch and a half down each skewer (from the pointy end) and mark it with a sharpie.
DIY Starburst Mirror for $10 or less!
Line the sharpie line up with the rim of the mirror and glue down with hot glue along each spoke of the wheel.
DIY Starburst Mirror for $10 or less!

Then use seven skewers in between each spoke and taper down toward the middle. I took it section by section and then put hot glue over the top in a line.

Make your way around the mirror, and then add some more hot glue to make sure everything sticks.
DIY Starburst Mirror

Then cover the mirror with newspaper and painter’s tape and spray paint front and back in gold.
DIY Starburst Mirror for $10 or less!

Finally, use a whole lot of wood glue to secure the plywood circle to the back of the mirror and use heavy books or some other weight to apply pressure and allow it to set for at least 30 minutes. I secured the edges with some hot glue as well.

Finally, glue on a picture hanger, and mount to the wall.
DIY Starburst Mirror for $10 or less!

And voila! I am stunned by the result! It looks so much more expensive than it is, and it was really a very simple project!
DIY Starburst Mirror for $10 or less!
DIY Starburst Mirror for $10 or less!

Side note: I repainted our nightstands from “antique white” to a pure white, and I am loving the small change! They looked pretty before, but it wasn’t working in the room.
DIY Starburst Mirror for $10 or less!

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This Little (Inexpensive) Light Of Mine…

You may have the same problem I have.

Boob lights.

You know the ones. These.
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That is the official DIY blogger term for these simple flushmount lights that are so popular with builders and budget renovations. I get it, they are cheap and they get the job done. But they are so not awesome. And I like awesome more than not awesome. And I light my light fixtures not to resemble awkward anatomy.

So I fixed the boob lights in our bedroom and hallway…for less than $15 a pop. There are two ways to do this, so let me share.
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I purchased two drum lamp shades at home goods on clearance for $12 a piece (originally $14 & $16, so even without the sale they won’t break the bank). One is a cool white and the other is called “gray” but it is really “greige.” It is important for converting a boob light to a flushmount drum light that the shade be a spider shade. That means it has the rods that criss cross across the top of the drum.
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Option 1: Just screw it.

For our bedroom, I decided a filter wasn’t really necessary, so I went the easy route. I removed the glass on the light, just like I would if I were going to change the light bulb.
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You should have a little nut that was threaded onto the metal pole, holding up the glass.
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All I did was screw the shade onto the pole with the nut (too many awkward words).

That is all there is to it. The threading on the metal went all the way up, so I just tightened it until the shade sat right below the light bulbs. If you look underneath, you can see the bulbs, but with the layout of this room specifically. it isn’t noticeable, and l like the grayish color inside the shade shining through.
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Total cost:
Shade: $12
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So many projects in the works for our bedroom!  Those Euro shams and gold link pillow are new. Stay tuned!

Option 2: Put a filter on it.

If you want a little bit more finished look, it’s easy peasy and doesn’t add much cost.

For the hallway, I purchased half a yard of white muslin fabric for less than $2 at Joann Fabrics, and a roll of piping (or ribbon that looks like piping.)

First, iron the fabric and cut it slightly larger than the circumference of the bottom of the shade.
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Then, use some Craft Glue and line the rim of the shade.

Then lay the fabric on top and pull tight. The fewer wrinkles the better. Let it set for a few minutes to let the glue dry.
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Next, pull down the edges and glue the piping/ribbon down for a finished look. I had to cut around the edges a little more so that the fabric could hide behind the ribbon.
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Tip: line up the start of the ribbon with the part of the shade that fold on top of each other.

Some shades already have piping when you purchase them, in which case you could easily just remove the existing piping and then reapply.

Finally, to get the shade onto the light fixture, you will need to attach the little nut that came from the fixture to the hole in the “spider” part of the shade with a sturdy glue that will bond metals (like heavy duty super glue).

I just flipped the shade upside down and glued them together (you want the nut to be below the shade so that the shade rests on top).
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Let it set for a few minutes, and then screw that shade onto the pole (you will probably have to twist several dozen times to get it up far enough.)

To change the bulbs, I plan on just lowering it a bit and changing them from above.
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Total cost: $15
Shade: $12
Fabric: $2
Ribbon: $3

For comparison, here is a ceiling light from Lowe’s next to my creation.
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Pretty simple, huh? I would love to be able to exchange every boob light for a beautiful, unique creation like the one in the office, but this simple fix is a major update on a dime, and I am happy with that!
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What do you think?

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Posted in Before and Afters, craft projects, Home Details, Projects | 2 Comments