A weekly series featuring inspiring homes from around
the blogging community. I ask each blogger the same question-
“What does creating a lovely home mean to you?”
Here’s what Sara shared-
Hi. I’m Sara. I’m a child of the Most High, a wife to my best friend, Sean, a mother to three awesome children, Stella (9), Jonah (7), Ava (4) and I’m someone who likes to take a pretty photo here and there Sara Parsons Photography. I’m new to this lovely little blog. I actually *met Heather on instagram of all places. When she asked me to be a part of this series I was a little bit nervous, honored, completely humbled, and excited all at the same time.
Creating a lovely home to me means making a space where my friends and family can come and feel comfortable and happy and safe. I want my home to be the place where my children always, always, always want to come to. Almost 6 years ago we were blessed to build a house and ever since then we have been working on turning our house into a home. I love pretty and my husband loves functional. So I’m calling our home – Pretty Functional. I guess on that note, we should get started.
I do believe the kitchen is my most favorite room in the house. It’s where you’ll always find us. It’s the one room in the house where I was allowed to splurge a little when we were building. I knew, without a doubt, I wanted a big apron front sink, a white subway tile backsplash, and Rejuvenation’s school house lights for above the island. Those were the 3 things I worked around when creating my kitchen space.
We recently bought these bar stools. My dream stools are the Tolix metal stools, but since I haven’t been able to find the tree that grows money, I searched for a look alike and found these from overstock.com. I got 4 for less than the price of one of my dream stools. I’m happy about that. I’m thinking about taking a few cans of pink spray paint to them, though. That’s what I do; I buy something and then put my own spin on it. I rarely buy something and leave it as is. It’s a problem really.
I love flowers, I love Katie Daisy’s artwork, I love Anthropologie and I love my cute kitchen curtains that my sister in law recently made for me out of tea towels and the ruffles out of some Heather Ross fabric. In my kitchen I also have a little nook that works as my workspace. I used to work in the office, but I moved out to the kitchen and I love it so much more. I like to be where the family is.
The kitchen, dining and living room are all one big room with a loop for the kids to run themselves wild.Here’s the dining area.
You want to know who built that beautiful table? My husband, that’s who. He’s a handy guy. You’ll come to realize that when you see all the other lovelies he’s built for me. And just so you know, that I know, our floors are what we like to call rustic. We actually used the trees from our property that we had cut down, for our floors. I think it was 10 trees total that we had milled to finish the downstairs with wood floors. Anyway, they’ve got lots of character… and lots of gaps that I get to vacuum lots of crumbs out of, but I love them.
This past November, our family had the amazing privilege of having Joy, of Wild Flowers Photography, take our family portraits!! To say I love the photos is a complete understatement, but I do, I love them and you’ll be seeing lots of them throughout the house. Our family is a waffle-eating family. Every Saturday morning you’ll find us sitting around our table eating homemade waffles. I think as soon as Ava could talk, she’d say to her dad, whether on the phone or whispered in his ear, “dad, let’s make waffles” and so the tradition of waffles has stuck and I’m not complaining.This photo is so perfect for my home.
Here’s another item built by my handy husband; the top part of the hutch. Originally, I just had the bottom, buffet table. It was black and it had been screaming at me for years to paint it white and to add a top hutch part. Well a couple months ago it happened!! I found a picture of what I liked in a magazine and had torn it out years ago (pre-pinterest), so when it came time for Sean to build it, I handed him the picture. He did an awesome job and I can’t believe the difference it makes in my kitchen! I love it.
Next, let’s go through this door here to the laundry room.
This is the view when you turn to the left. I’ll be the first to say it doesn’t always look like this. Sometimes the laundry piles up. If you follow me on instagram, you’ve probably seen a picture or two… or three, of the dreaded pile.
This side of the room is still kind of a blank slate. I recently painted the room a new wall color, Benjamin Moore’s, Moonshine. I really like it. I’m trying to think of a good solution for this wall that will help with all the folded clothes and socks so the kids can grab their stacks and be on their way. I’m thinking shelves with bins. I’ve added it to the husbands list.
Here’s the view when you turn to the right. Our mudroom. This room used to drive me crazy. There was always shoes everywhere, coats everywhere, backpacks everywhere, you name it, it was everywhere. But not anymore thanks to my rad husband and Pinterest for the lovely idea. Yep, another thing my husband built. And if you’re wondering if he’s a carpenter, he isn’t. He’s actually a lineman, but his many years of woodshop as a young boy have certainly paid off! I can’t tell you how happy this new mudroom makes me. To be able to walk in the door and not trip over stuff makes me want to shout for joy. It truly works like a well oiled machine. It’s functional and pretty.
The letter hooks are from Anthropologie and the other hooks are from Ruche. I love hooks. They hang things and it’s a beautiful thing.
I recently made the curtains in this room out of an old quilt top. Now I can pull them across the window, you know, in case I don’t want people looking in the door to see my neatly-folded-laundry or something.
We had a lot of scrap wood laying outside and I knew exactly what I wanted to do with some of it; shoe boxes! Sean put together these boxes in a day. What is up shoe storage?! Can I get a hallelujah!?! I had some old frames from ikea and I ordered some wood numbers and we added them to the front of the boxes for a little extra detail. I could not be more happy with these old, beat up, wood shoe boxes.
Across from the “lockers” we have more hooks. These hooks are all from Anthropologie and we stuck them on some more scrap wood we had. The coats are happy. This is their happy place.
I’m so thankful for my laundry/mudroom. Now let’s head back through the kitchen and start at the entryway again.
Let’s follow Ava and work our way to the living room.
The living room is more of a sitting room. It’s not huge, but it’s a cozy space and we all fit, so that’s all I care about.
My sister was given a bunch of old wooden crates. They sat in her garage for a long time and then one day she asked if I would like them and I said a big fat YES! I used them as toy storage up in the family room until now. Sean put two together and created a new TV stand. Then I bought a curtain panel from Urban Outfitters and I sewed it into two small curtain panels to hide ugly junk. I think it turned out pretty good.
Probably my most favorite image from our Wildflowers photo shoot. Laying on old quilts, all squished together, left over tattoos on my kids hands and arms, Stella’s hand behind Jonah’s head… perfection.
Here’s my collage wall. This wall has been bare for a loooooong time. The only thing I had on there was the silhouettes I made of my kids. It feels good to have things finally hanging. Across from this wall is another bare wall. I have my instagram prints printed and ready to be hung but I didn’t finish in time for the tour. Maybe if you come back you’ll be able see it.
OK, we’re back in the entryway. Now let’s head to the right and make our way to the powder room.
From here we can go to the right again to get to the master bedroom, straight to get to the office, which is officially called the danger zone. It needs a makeover badly. It’s my next project. Or we can take a left and go in to a cute little spot where one can freshen up; the powder room.
I like this little bathroom. I had big dreams of having a claw foot tub, but those darn plans and that darn thing called a budget, wouldn’t allow for it.
I got the cute little cabinet a couple years ago at one of the Funky Junk sales, aka Junk Salvation or Funky Junk Sisters. It’s held in Puyallup, WA, among other places, and I was able to make it down with some friends. It was super fun and I could have bought a lot of pretty things. I won the sweet little crown on top through a blog giveaway from the talented photographer, Krysta Manthe. I got all sorts of goodies from that giveaway, the crown is just one of the fun things.
Next up is the master bedroom. This room has recently gone under some changes, including new paint and new curtains.
This is the view when you first walk in the room.
I love doilies and pretty knobs…if you haven’t noticed already.
Want to know who built our bed? Yep, he did. He really did. My husband actually made it for a wedding gift to us. It was a surprise when we got back from our honeymoon t0 find it in our new place waiting for us. So sweet. I bought the fabric for the curtains from fabric.com and my wonderful mom made them for me. I know chevron stripes are super trendy and in a few years I’ll probably tire of them, but for the time being I love them. They are cheery and make me super happy. To some, you might find my room a little funny, I mean I have ruffles and lace and doilies and chevron stripes, but to me it works. I’m all about, if you love something, then you should go for it, even if it might be breaking some sort of design rule.
I found this sweet lamp on etsy, but it wasn’t quite tall enough. I had already bought the lamp shade and it needed a little more height so I found another lamp I could use for the parts. I had lots of lamp pieces but no finished product until my hot, handy husband put it together. Oh that husband of mine…he’s a keeper.
Alright, let’s head upstairs and finish off the tour with the kids’ rooms.
I’ve been wanting to paint numbers on my stairs for a long time. Then I got the idea to first paint some chalkboard paint and then the kids can choose to write numbers or letters…or faces.When you get to the top of the stairs it opens up into a big family room. The family room will not be on the tour because it’s scary and needs some work. It’s the catch-all room and has lots of left over furniture and toys. Along with the office, I hope to finish off the family room soon. For now, just envision a messy room with ugly furniture.
We’ll start with Stella’s room, which also serves as the guest room. So guests, I hope this space makes you very happy.
Stella’s dresser used to be Sean’s Nana’s dresser and it’s my favorite dresser in the house. We got it when we first were married and used it until Stella came around. When it became Stella’s, I painted it and added some cute, pink, glass pulls.
I’ve had the Ikea frame above her bed for over a year, but I finally just spray painted it and hung it.
I found an old window pane and I painted some chalkboard paint on it. I kinda like chalkboard paint.
Most of the bedding in Stella’s room is homemade. I actually made her bedskirt a few years ago. Stella’s been begging for a bright purple room, so who knows, I might be making new bedding in the future…whether it’s going to be bright purple, well that’s still to be decided.
And now to Jonah’s room.
I’ve recently painted the walls gray in here. We also just got the ikea shelf and bins for all his toys and he loved building it with extra glue with his Dad. That’s one of the best purchases. He had a toy storage unit before, but it didn’t compare to this one. The bins on this one are good and deep and hold all of his toys easily.
On our last visit to CA, we ate at In-N-Out 5 times. We like In-N-Out.
One of my most favorite things is when my kids draw pictures. Jonah drew these two pictures in class and they were frame worthy. The second one down is a picture of his dad climbing a power pole.
You should hear this Darth Vader clock’s alarm. Super creepy. We found this little jewel at Urban Outfitters. Jonah doesn’t use the alarm yet.
The square wall in his room is made up of 6 colors and I actually had to draw a map before I started painting. It was getting confusing. It’s been up almost 6 years and I still like it…or I’m too tired to change it.
And last, but certainly not least, let’s move on to Ava’s room. Warning, if you’re not a fan of the color pink, then you may just not like Ava’s room. It’s pink on pink.
When we first moved into the house, this was Stella’s room. She was all about princesses and the color pink. I saw a photo in a magazine of a pink striped wall and thought it would be perfect for Stella. It was, and still is perfect, now for her baby sister. I love pink.
My mom had saved several different dresses and outfits from when we were kids. Here is a little dress that I wore when I was a baby.
Some sweet embroidered fabric done by my mom. I think she made them for my oldest sister when she was little… somehow I got them
The photo of Ava was from last 4th of July in Seaside, Oregon. It’s one of my favorites of her, ever.
Another baby dress from when I was small and some pretty ruffly curtains made by my mom. They turned out so cute. My mom is a master sewer. They were a tedious job though and I now know why ruffled curtains cost the big bucks.
My baby, with her babies, in her room.
I think that’s it! I hope you all enjoyed seeing our home. It was a joy for me to share it with you. I’ll leave you with this photo of me, taken by my oldest.