Fall Home Tour

Fall is definitely upon us... the Midwest decided to cool down this week & you can't go one day without seeing someone post about a pumpkin spice latte on Instagram.

Along with all things pumpkin, cozy scarves, & boots; fall is also my favorite time of the year to decorate!

I could spend hours looking through home decor magazines & Pinterest.

It's fun to be inspired, but let's be real... 85% of us don't have homes that are picture perfect.
We have mismatched wood tones.  We have ugly heat registers.  We have carpeting that needs to be replaced...

So when Katie reached out to me with the idea of "The Everyday Home Tour" showcasing a "real person's" fall home decor, I loved her idea.

Here's the concept -- a practical Fall Home Tour with some everyday bloggers -- ones you can actually relate to.  So, we're sharing a few peeks into what a more typical home looks like, instead of all these fancy-schamncy homes you see in the magazines, blogland, & Pinterest.

I only have one storage bin of actual fall decor, so a majority of my fall decor is recycled items from around my house, just re-purposed for the season.

Let's start in our living room:

Since I don't have a fireplace, this side table acts as my mantel.  

The acorn banner is from Target's dollar spot & the old window is from a local antique shop.

Zac & I gathered acorns to fill mason jars from my grandma.  I scoured Goodwill for two books whose spines matched my color scheme & threw a framed wedding photo on top -- we got married in October... gee, maybe that's why I love fall so much? :) 

The pumpkin with lights is from Taylor Creek a few years ago, the chalkboard sign is from Hobby Lobby, & the crock (full of pinecones) is from my grandma.  Pinecones c/o the woods ;)  I jazzed them up with some spray adhesive & glitter.  The books & cross were items I already had from around the house.

The vase is from Big Lots ages ago, the canvas is a photo I took, and the LOVE blocks are photos from our wedding, from an Etsy shop called Waste Not Recycled Art.  The pumpkins I've had a very long time, and honestly can't remember where they're from.

This basket was from our wedding; it held our wedding programs at church.

I added some candy corn to a mason jar, threw a tea light in there, & tied a ribbon around the top.  Instant fall decoration to spice up our ladder.

On our TV stand, I added some leaf garland from Taylor Creek & arranged some pinecones. 

On our end table sits a cute pumpkin from Target's dollar spot -- love this little guy!

A few years ago, my mom, sister & I crafted these pumpkins out of dryer vents.  

I didn't do much in the kitchen, except add this wire pumpkin to our table.  I think this is from Kohl's.

In each bathroom, I added just a few fall inspired touches:

I framed a fall printable, found here.  And I made another little candy corn candle to sit on top of the toilet.

In our other bathroom, I added this ceramic leaf to hold my daily jewelry (bought at a rummage sale) & placed a metal pumpkin candle on the counter.

That rounds out my tour!  Simple, cheap, but kinda cute -- just the way I like it :)

Make sure to visit Katie's blog: Tomorrow with a Smile, for more fall decor inspiration!

If you've posted your fall decor, please link it in the comment section, or tag your photos on Instagram with #TheEverydayHomeTour  -- I'd love to check it out!

Happy decorating :)

The Super Blood Moon \ Total Lunar Eclipse.

I always have lofty goals of photographing the moon.

I think "Yep, the next full moon. You're going to photograph it."

The next full moon comes & goes, and I forget.

Then I read a new article about photographing the moon, and I tell myself "Ok, seriously.  The next time the moon looks cool, you have to photograph it."

It happened like twice.  And each time I managed to actually remember to photograph it, I wasn't pleased with the results.


Here's the thing about taking pictures of the moon; it's hard.   Well, it's not hard... you just need the right equipment... which I don't have.  And the right manual settings... which I suck at.

But, last Sunday morning, I heard all this hubbub about the "super blood moon"; the "total lunar eclipse"; the "this only happens a couple times a century" .... so, being the planner that I am, I told Siri to remind me 10 minutes before 9:00 pm to watch the sky.

At 8:50 pm, like clockwork, Siri sent me a reminder.  I got out my trusty tripod & set-up shop in the backyard.

Zac & I fidgeted around with my camera settings for a good 20 minutes.  We took about 40 frames, and I ended up with a few "decent" photos.

Without further ado -- here are my completely un-photoshopped, un-cropped images of the Super Moon Eclipse:

Blood moon

Blood moon
 Blood moon

Yeah.  Pretty anti-climatic.  BUT -- I did get to spend 45 minutes outside with my husband, watching the moon & stars on a beautiful Sunday evening.  That almost counts like a date, right? ;)

Travel: Chicago, Part 2

{Day 2 we did ALOT -- so I'm breaking this up into two posts}

We woke early, to rain, to start our second day in Chicago.
Rain on windowsRaindrops

We dined again at the hotel for (free) breakfast, and then took our time to walk the city to our first reservation – The Sky Deck @ the Willis Tower.

Chicago at street level

Chicago River

Chicago Tribune


And then the rain cleared for a bit -- yay!

Chicago buildings
Chicago buildings

American flags

Mom in Chicago

So, the Willis Tower is North America’s tallest building; its interior office spaces are home to popular companies, and it’s an iconic landmark in Chicago.  

Willis Tower

The experience from the Sky Ledge is both terrifying & exhilarating to say the least...

Sky Ledge at Willis Tower

Sky Ledge at Willis Tower

The Sky Deck is at the 103rd floor & offers views for miles on a clear day.  Within the Sky Deck sits a few Sky Ledges – which are solid glass boxes which protrude out from the building about 4 feet & individuals are able to literally walk on what seems like air – crazy!!

Views from the Willis Tower Sky Deck; Chicago

Views from the Willis Tower Sky Deck; Chicago

Views from the Willis Tower Sky Deck; Chicago

About 2 weeks prior to our trip we pre-purchased the Fast Track pass – we learned from our experience in NYC & the Empire State Building that is it SO WORTH the extra money not to have to wait in any lines... (when you only have a couple days in a city, it’s painful to have to wait in a 2-3 hour line).

Views from the Willis Tower Sky Deck; Chicago

Views from the Willis Tower Sky Deck; Chicago

Views from the Willis Tower Sky Deck; Chicago

More to come, stay tuned!

If you missed my recap of Day 1,  click here