A Little Family With Big News

This past weekend was a big weekend for our little family! As you can see, Hera was very excited.

big news

We had been keeping this secret for almost two months! Welcome to our family, Baby Bronn!

baby bronn 1

Hera now has a baby brother; A little black German Shepherd just like her!

baby bronn 2

I recently picked up this letter board from T.J. Maxx and thought it would be a cute way to introduce our little guy to everyone. I like the versatility of the letter board as it can be changed daily, monthly, or seasonally depending on your mood!

Get yours here —> Felt Letter Board 


Bronn has already made himself right at home.  His current favorite things are: napping, eating, chewing on everything, and following his big sister around.

baby bronn 3

I saw these little collar accessories online and new we needed to get them for this handsome dude. Look at that little bow tie! We found this bow tie and tie pack at Petco.


He is already so smart and adventurous. He learned how to use the doggy door in one day! Now we really cant take our eyes off of him.

baby bronn 4

These two pups are already getting along and it’s only day three. I think Hera is starting to like her new little “shadow”.

hera and bronn

Follow them on instagram for cute pictures and puppy updates: Bronn & Hera



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Instagram Inspiration: The Front Door Project

Recently, I stumbled upon Instagram account The Front Door Project and was instantly hooked. I am absolutely amazed with the homes that are featured in the photos. I cannot believe people actually live in these houses! They are so lucky!

front door 1

I am excited to say that I was able to get in touch with Deb, the founder and creator of The Front Door Project, and ask her a few questions. Check out our interview below:

I see that you started this project in 2014; Tell me more about how you thought of this idea and why you started.

While taking daily walks around her neighborhood she began photographing the front doors of historic homes. After sharing a few of her photos on social media, it became clear that her friends and followers enjoyed the content she was creating.  Currently, Deb has almost 50 thousand followers on her Instagram account!  Deb Cohen started The Front Door Project in 2014 to “motivate herself to get outside, exercise and pay more attention to her surroundings.” She began photographing homes with a primary focus on the front door. According to her blog, social media provided the means to share photographs and soon led to exploring other local towns in her free time. Deb Cohen lives in the historic town of West Hartford, Connecticut.  In 2015 she became the vice chairman for the West Hartford Historical Commission; she works with other board members to preserve the city’s protected historical structures.

front door 2

Do you have an historic town that you love to visit for The Front Door Project? What are your favorite things about that town?

There are so many wonderful historic places to visit, it’s hard to narrow it down! I think my favorite New England place would be Martha’s Vineyard, which is actually made up of a number of towns, all with great history. Edgartown and Oak Bluffs are my personal favorites. Edgartown has a long whaling history, and its narrow streets are lined with old sea captain’s homes. Oak Bluffs is an explosion of color, with Carpenter Gothic Victorian cottages and homes lining Ocean Park and the streets of the Martha’s Vineyard Campground Meeting Association. In addition to fabulous historic architecture, the island has amazing restaurants, shopping, and the most gorgeous beaches. We have made many summer memories there over the last thirteen years. Fun fact: Jaws was filmed there as well, and it’s fun to pick out scenes that we recognize from the movie.

Outside of New England, my favorite spots to visit for historic architecture (thus far!) are Charleston and New Orleans. Each city has a distinctive look and feel that make them almost instantly recognizable from pictures alone, and each place has so much to offer in terms of cuisine, music, and of course historic sites.


front door 3
Charleston, SC

Have you been able to see inside of any of these amazing homes? If so, which ones?

I rarely get to see inside of private homes, although that is something I would like to do in the future. There are a number of historic homes open to the public as museums, and I happen to work at The Mark Twain House & Museum in Hartford, CT, which has the most stunning architecture both inside and out! It is absolutely worth a visit if you are in the region, or if you are a lifelong lover of Mark Twain’s books.

Mark Twain House

If you could have any style home, which would it be and why?

Another tough one! I admire so many architectural styles. I think it’s easier to say what I would not live in. I wouldn’t live in new construction, or any type of contemporary home. Just not my thing! Our country is blessed with so many gorgeous homes from the past, and I would love to see them maintained and preserved for future generations. I love Colonials, Victorians, Craftsmen, Tudors – you name it!

What’s next for you and The Front Door Project?

I am excited about the book project I am working on with Union Park Press, a publisher in the Boston area. It will feature homes from all six New England states, from all four seasons. I have spent the last year traveling the region and shooting photos, and I am doing the final edits now for submission to the publisher. The book should be available by September or October, right before the holidays, so stay tuned! Once I get the book completed, I would like to get back to my blog – I miss writing!

Y’all, her book will be out around my birthday! (*Cough Cough*, Boy Jamie)


Below is a peek at some of my favorite snapshots highlighted on her Instagram account.

front door 4
Portsmouth, NH


front door 5
Amherst, NH


front door 6
Amherst, NH
front door 7
West Hartford, CT


front door 8
Old Wethersfield, CT


front door 9
Suffield, CT


front door 10
Litchfield, CT


front door 11
Woods Hole, MA


front door 12
Concord, MA

I am so grateful to Deb for taking the time to answer my questions. Scrolling through her photos makes me remember all of the reasons why I loved living in the North East. If you haven’t already, go check out The Front Door Project on Instagram!





Dog Mom and Dog Dad coffee mug

10 Best Valentine’s Day Gifts for Dog Lovers

Dogs really are a man’s/woman’s best friend. If you are struggling to find a creative gift for a loved one this Valentine’s day or any holiday really, take a look at some of the 10 best gifts for dog lovers! Surprise your favorite dog mom or dad with one of these adorable ideas chosen specifically for dog lovers.

MY Dog is My Valentine

My Dog is my Valentine T-Shirt $24

When you have a dog, you always have a valentine, and a pretty great one at that! Your pup is always happy to see you, is overly loyal, and gives tons of kisses. Did you know that spending time with your pup increases levels of the hormone oxytocin, often referred to as the “love hormone”? I know a few of my friends that would definitely wear this shirt to our Galentine’s day party.


Custom dog shaped cookie cutter

Custom Cookie Cutter $15.95+

I have already attempted baking pupcakes (dog friendly cupcakes) for Hera’s birthday and they were a huge hit! By a huge hit I mean that Hera and her little buddy Lacie devoured them in seconds; typical for my crazy pup. Now it looks like I’ll have to try making my own dog treats with these super cute dog shaped cookie cutters.

Here are some pictures from Hera’s second birthday!



Dog Mom and Dog Dad coffee mug

Dog Dad/Mom Mug $6.00+

Do you know what makes me happy? My dog. Do you know what also makes me happy? A fresh cup of coffee in the morning. These dog mom/dad coffee mugs are ideal for snuggling up with a cup of tea and your pup on a cold night or sipping on hot coffee on a relaxing weekend morning…until the pupper makes you take them for a walk.

Friendship collar, matching dog collar and bracelet

The Friendship Collar Collection $35.00+

Speaking of taking the dog on a walk, look at this matching collar/bracelet duo! I only highlighted these two options but Friendship Collar.com has many more. Why didn’t I think of this?!


Striped Dog Teepee

Striped Dog Teepee $85

Sometimes, dogs need a break from their “ruff” life. This teepee is the perfect hideaway for your pet for when he/she wants some alone time. This teepee is extremely versatile and can complement any room, from classic to modern.


Odin Treat Puzzle Toy $23**
Odin Treat Puzzle Toy by Up Dog Toys

Do you ever wonder if your dog has enough mental stimulation in their day? I do! Hera is a black German Shepherd, whose breed is known for their high level of energy and intelligence. This “toy” doubles as a treat dispenser and puzzle for your pup. This will keep your pet physically and mentally busy working for that reward while allowing you some time to yourself!


Custom eco-friendly dog tote with portrait

Custom Tote Bag

This may not be budget friendly but it is completely unique and adorable! This eco-friendly oversized tote, made from 100% cotton, is exactly what you and your pet need to for their favorite treats and toys. It is also a great way to keep their belongings organized for a day at the beach, a sleepover at the pet sitters, or a trip with the family!



Donut Squeaker Toy

ZippyPaws Donutz Variety Pack of 3 **

I love donuts almost as much as I love Hera! My favorite is Strawberry Frosted…and that’s why I was drawn to these squeaker toys. These toys are a fun, vibrant addition to your pup’s toy collection. If your dog is anything like mine, I’m sure he/she has a pretty hefty collection. Our pup is lovingly spoiled by both Jamies and both dog-grandmas!


Roll up dog mat and bowls

EasyPets Roll ‘N’ Go Double Bowl Set $14.99**

EasyPets Roll ‘N’ Go Fold Down Silicone Pet Bowls & Feeding Mat

This simple non slip feeding station provides ease and accessibility for pups on the go! It also helps protect against the mess that most pups leave behind. The mat contains a food and water bowl surrounded by a FDA approved silicone mat. Easy to transport and easy to store, the mat rolls away in seconds and conveniently pops back in to its carry case. This means wherever you go you have a suitable, clean, handy double bowl set for water and food.



Custom Dog Bone Necklace $28 +

Petite and pretty, this dog bone necklace is sure to show your love for your best friend. Each necklace is custom made. I don’t know about you guys, but I would love something thoughtful and meaningful like this!
I didn’t realize how many of the items I chose were from ETSY until I finished this post. Clearly, Etsy is one of my go-to sites for customized, personalized gifts. Also, when you purchase from Etsy, you help to support a small business or entrepreneur! And that has to make you feel good!
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Valentine’s Day Home Decor and Accessories

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner! If your home is feeling a little bare and blah after taking down the Christmas decorations, take advantage of this next holiday that is quickly approaching. Whether you want to go all out with reds, pinks, and hearts, or take the subtle approach, below is a list of home decor and entertainment accessories if you feel the need to decorate for Valentine’s Day.

Hobby Lobby

You're stuck with me cactus mug

You’re Stuck With Me Mug $4.79

This cactus “you’re stuck with me” mug is a great little gift for your significant other. Also, living in Texas, you can never go wrong with the cactus motif. This white dolomite mug boasts an over-sized bowl-shape with the cute phrase “You’re stuck with me” in skinny black text and three black cactus plants.

Love Wood Wall Decor

Love Floral Wood Wall Décor $ 4.79

There are so many beautiful details to help inspire you to decorate for Valentine’s Day. Add a pop of color to your walls or bookshelves with this wood wall decor! I love Hobby Lobby. They always have great sales throughout the year. If the item you need is not on sale, go on their website and download the 40% off one item coupon! <——–


Target Single Pink Heart Wall Art

Single Pink Heart by Shelley Lake Framed Poster 19″x 13″ – $28.79

Here I go talking about Target again. This framed “poster” is a great way to welcome the Valentine’s day spirit without going overboard. You can easily incorporate this piece into an already existing gallery wall or layer it on a bookshelf. Once the holiday is over, simply substitute it out and save it for next year or…leave it! It’s fun and trendy and who doesn’t love black, white, and gold. All components are made in the USA, and the artwork comes ready to hang.

Gray Stripe Oversize Faux Fur Heart Throw Pillow $16.99 &

Pink Oversize Faux Fur Heart Throw Pillow  $16.99

Add an extra sweet touch to your couch or bedding with these Oversize Faux-Fur Throw Pillows from Target. Blush is back! More importantly, blush and brass is back and even better when paired together! Check out these cozy, furry heart shaped pillows. Throw these onto your sofa or bed, along with an oversize knit blanket and you’ve got yourself a romantic yet casual space to relax.

Pier 1

Pier 1 Metallic Hearts Wall Art

Metallic Hearts Art $127.20

Tons of texture in this piece! This is one of the pricier options on my list but is well worth it. This piece is approximately 40”by 40” and would make a great statement on a bare wall.

Heart with Arrow Wood & Marble Serving Board $39.95

Also from Pier 1 is this versatile heart-shaped cutting board. Made from marble and acacia wood, accented with a golden “cupid’s” arrow, this is meant to be at the center of your Valentine’s or Galentine’s day party! Serve up some love people!


Heart Shaped Ramekins

Novelty Shaped Ramekin Set $19.95

These ramekins can be used in the traditional way: oven to table top, or can be used as a snack bowl. I’m thinking they can be utilized in a quirky way to serve nuts or candies. “I’m nuts about you!” or “How sweet it is to be loved by you!”. Boy Jamie tells me I’m a goofball daily; I’ve embraced it.

Williams Sonoma

White with Red Heart Platter

Valentines Day Platter $16.95

The sturdy stoneware provides simplistic presentation for all sorts of festive foods, from appetizers and tasty cheeses to cookies and dessert confections. The imperfect edges and a bright red heart give this platter the classic charm of handmade valentines.

Floral Ice Mold

Williams Sonoma Rosebud Silicone Ice Molds, Set of 2 $14.95

These floral ice molds provide a unique compliment to a well-crafted cocktail. The inventive silicone molds create ice cubes that melt slowly and evenly so drinks stay well chilled and beautifully balanced. Who doesn’t want an ice-flower in their Valentine’s day drink?! This is sure to be a hit at your Valentine’s or Galentine’s day celebration. And the best part is, these can be reused for bridal showers, baby showers, or birthdays! I think I need these.

White Marble heart cheese board and coasters

White Marble Heart Cheese Board $39.95 &

White Marble Heart Coasters, Set of 4 $24.95

The perfect platform for treats you love, this heart platter is crafted of white marble with hints of gray veining. The naturally cool marble helps keep cheese, fruits and other delectable delights at the ideal serving and eating temperature. The coasters are a perfect pairing to the Cheese Board. Each one-of-a-kind coaster varies slightly in tone and movement.

I think the best part about Valentine’s day is that decorating with hearts is socially acceptable! I know Valentine’s day may not be everyone’s favorite holiday, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use it as an excuse to add some color and new textures to your home. Spice up your space in the spirit of Valentine’s Day using inspiration from these decor and accessory suggestions.


**Check out these February themed planner stickers from Erin Condren —>


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DIY Pallet Side Table

Pallet projects have really taken off in the world of Pinterest. I don’t think I even knew what a pallet was before 2010. Now, it has become one of the cheapest and most popular resources for DIY home décor projects. A little creativity can turn a pallet into the perfect addition to any room in your house!

Before I show you one of my favorite creations, we need to talk about the most important material: the pallet! What is a pallet anyway?

Pallets are a platform that provide a base/foundation for materials to be easily stored and moved (usually by forklift). The wood pallet is the most popular type of pallet, followed by other materials, including plastic, wood composite and metal. You can usually find pallets behind grocery stores, home improvements stores, or any location that receives large shipments from a freight truck. If you can’t find any around town, you can always check out craigslist for free pallets.

I found these pallets left behind by construction workers in my mom’s neighborhood:

pallet stack
Stack of pallets found in my mom’s neighborhood. (Construction area)

**TIP** When searching through the pallet stack, look for the pallets with the most usable wood.

There were tons of variations within these pallets; Some were new, some weathered, some had yellow tones, others had gray or red tones. I knew I would be able to pick and choose the best pieces for my project.

Breaking the pallets apart takes a good amount of work and elbow grease. To make your life easier, use a jig saw or circular saw to cut the boards at the ends. Get yourself a Jig Saw like this —>

Pry the wood from the center support with a crow bar to salvage the entire length of the board. This should give you 8 to 14 boards per pallet. Remember to remove nails from slats. If you decide to leave the nails in for some added character, be sure to cut and file them down.

After seeing that stack of pallets in my mom’s neighborhood, I was feeling creative. I checked out my local thrift stores and consignment shops until I found this interesting little hexagonal side table. I could have kept it white, but I had left over chalk paint from one of the hundreds of teacher crafts I had been working on. (If I were to do this project again today, I would probably keep it white)

I was deciding whether to keep the table white or continue painting it this sunflower dandelion shade. At that time, I had also been working on a pallet headboard (more to come on that one). I started piecing together the top of the table with pallet scraps from my headboard. I love how each piece has a different texture and warmth to it: Gray tones, yellows, reds. I played around with the design and position of the pieces, and planned for filling in the blanks.

**Tip and Trick** Map out your pieces before securing them. I like to move my wood pieces around like a puzzle until I find the perfect combination and design.

Once I was finished mapping out the pieces, the table top ended up looking like this!

I also added pallet pieces to the sides of the table:

pallet table 5
Side view of the table.

This adorable side table is now living in my guest room!

The possibilities with pallet furniture are endless. It’s impressive how something so simple and common can be used to create something as beautiful as an original piece of furniture.


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