Monday, August 29, 2011

I Would Like To Introduce You To Henry Strong

On August 25th we welcomed our son Henry Bihl Strong to the world. We have not stopped smiling since. The whole experience has been breathtaking and more than words could ever express.
Henry is Patrick's middle name and was his Grandfather's name. Bihl is my Mom's maiden name.
We have spent every day since just staring at this face...and thanking God for such a blessing.
Thank you all for all the e-mails, calls and comments. You don't know how much they have meant to me. I am so lucky to have such amazing and wonderful people in my life.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I'll Be Right Back....

I'll be right back...after we welcome a very special new member to our family.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Nursery: Ceiling and Light

After a long search for wallpaper for the nursery walls, then wallpaper for the ceiling we decided to paint the ceiling. I went through several designs (these were just the beginning).....
I could have (and might have, ahem) gone a little crazy with the design but since Patrick volunteered to take on the challenge we decided to keep it somewhat "simple"- straight lines.
I knew I wanted to do tone on tone and gray, but after that I was relatively open to the exact shade. We had trim paint left over so I decided to use that as the darker color. I also liked that is was a gloss finish, something unexpected since the lighter color was an eggshell finish
I know the light fixture above was a favorite of many of you but don't worry, it went to a good home- our guest bedroom (which reallllly needed it). For the nursery light I knew what I wanted from the moment I saw it a year and half ago at Market.
I instantly loved the whimsical feel of the recycled styrofoam fixture but I knew it would have to be the right room. When we found out we were pregnant I knew just where it would find a home.
I know it is a little out there, a sentiment many, including the electrician, have conveyed to me but I could not love it more. It is unique and adds a playfulness the room needed.
Here is a picture of the full ceiling and light.
No, it is not your eyes playing tricks on you, it does look like the lines to the right are slightly uneven. I can assure you, after hours of taping, leveling and measuring the lines are perfect. It turns out that sometimes you don't know you have a huge dip in your ceiling until you decide to draw attention to it. C'est la vie.
So while I do still dream of wallpapered ceiling I could not be happier with the way things are looking overhead.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Side Table Needed- Bring In The Stump

There are still some items missing from the nursery, one of them being a side table for next to the rocker. Bring in this beauty...
A few months ago a wonderful client called to tell me that there were stumps on her street and volunteered to grab some for me. Of course I said yes and she has been holding on to these for months for me.
Last week I picked them up and this brings us to the part of the story that really Patrick should narrate. I had warned him of my next plan for the nursery- a stump side table- but what he was thinking when he opened my car and found the trunks I am sure would be a great comic relief.
Apparently there is a lot that goes into getting a stump from its natural state to a state suitable for home use, especially when the space it will be used in belongs to a baby. I will let you know what I find out and how this progresses. Needless to say this will be one of those things that will completed post baby arrival. I can't wait to for the finished product though, the lines in this one I hope will be fabulous!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Love The One You're With- Veranda Interiors

Today I am thrilled to welcome Melissa from Veranda Interiors as my guest blogger. I can't remember exactly when we became blog friends, but everyone should be lucky enough to have a friend like Melissa.
Her interiors are gorgeous, following her own home's progression is envy inducing and I have even made a special trip to H&M thanks to her post; but her kindness and support outweighs all of that. I feel very lucky to have met her in the crazy blog world!

I am SO thrilled to help out our expectant mother, workaholic, incredibly nice, favorite blogger Marianne by participating in this great series. When she first asked me to do this post we were hunkered down in our crappy rental while our new home was under construction, I sent a note back telling her that I could only do a 'hate the one your with' post. I really wanted to share images of our new home with you but we moved in and a week later we were off to our cabin at Tablerock Lake for the here I am, featuring the cabin since it is a place that we completely overhauled and we are now able to create so many wonderful memories here.
To ensure that the growth of the boys is documented as well as the fun that we have while here I set up this wall across from the front door so it is the first thing you are greeted with. I picked up the adorable growth chart off Etsy and have put some of our favorite images around it. They can change out from year to year...or I may just cram the frames closer together and add more.
The kitchen is the heart of the home and even here it is the same case. We are constantly seated at the island, creating yummy cookies with the boys, and cooking up a storm for my family when they come for the weekend, all 22 of them! The kitchen has come a long way, here is an image of what we were working with when we took possession of the home.



The family room on the main level of the home gets a lot of use from guest and our little guys. All I have to say is thank goodness the cream sofas are slip-covered, ha! My favorite item in this space is the antique teak bench from Bali that we use as a coffee table. The patina is wonderful and it just gets better with use.



The dining area of the home is right next to the great room so it had to all flow together. Once everything was drenched in white I started the hunt for decorative items. While I am still in search for many more things the space is working for me...for now.



Since we are never here during the winter months I needed to fill the fireplace box with something. The pillar candles were perfect since it is a darker space of the home and the ambiance it gives off is perfect. Tucked away in one corner of the room is Nemo, our glass fish from Roost, he is our cork collector at the cabin and the only fish I can seem to keep alive.

We tend to party it up with a bevy or two by the camp fire or on the dock so we needed a space for a bar but we are a little cramped. To accommodate the storage we required I found a great antique armiour that I adore. It is tucked away nicely in a corner and serves a great purpose.
So this is where we have been hiding out this summer. Thank you so much for visiting and do come again, I promise to make you a wonderful meal we can share. Mel xo

Thank you Melissa, of course I love it. Now I can't wait to see the house progression in the coming months!!!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Quiet Time- The Beginning...And Everything That Comes With It

The picture above is the first thing I ever purchased for the nursery. It is a page from a Bible dating back to the 1600's that I tracked down after seeing the Bible originally a long time ago at Scott's. It is not just any page though, it is special to me.

I won't go into all the details but around 8 weeks pregnant I was anxious and worried. While we did not have to endure anything close to what many couples do to get pregnant, it didn't just magically come easy to us, it took time and a lot faith. Then we were pregnant and me being the worrier I am battled fears of losing the baby. So during one particular fit of worry, a crazy and simple thing happened and God sent me the following passage:

"Then God said, "Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all creatures that move along the ground."

So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

God blessed them and said to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number, fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground." Genesis 1:26-28

I was so comforted; God has given me such a sense of peace during this time.

But here we are in the final week, one the verge of a new beginning and I have to be honest. In between the excitement and joy over meeting our son; fear, worry and anxiety are creeping in. Over what exactly I don't know. I can't explain it but I am sure many of you out there understand. Maybe it is the waiting and the unknown? Maybe it is change that always scares me? Don't get me wrong, there is nothing I want more than to meet our son and become a Mom.

I don't think I have ever prayed as hard as I have throughout this pregnancy and the prayers here at the end are coming fast and furious. I know He is listening, I know that one or another-no matter what, everything will be okay, and I just have to be still in Him. Sometimes though that is much easier said than done.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Bathing Beauty

I saw this backsplash/wall while flipping through the latest Pottery Barn catalog and I loved it so my first thought was I need to use that for a client at some point (although I would use something different on the floor probably)...Then while cleaning up my pictures some I realized that I had been looking at tile like that for a client recently...and now I hope we use it even more.
Oh how I love working on bathrooms and kitchens, especially when beautiful tile is involved.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

You Can Find Me....

Guest blogging on Emily A. Clark today...
Thanks for having me Emily!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A New Ride

I know by now you are probably well aware of the upcoming Missoni for Target line. With over 400 pieces there is a lot to look through. I will say though, this bicycle from the look book has been on my mind.....
Probably need to decide on stroller wheels before looking for myself though....

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Nursery: 38 Weeks

Twas two weeks before my due date, when all through the house, every creature was stirring, especially my spouse*.
The curtains were hung in nursery with care, with hopes that Baby Strong would soon be there.
The nursery is really coming together, I can't wait to share it with you but there is still more to be done so for now I am going to wait before showing the whole room. Here are some peeks though...
Details on certain items coming this week and next...
*I have to say a special thank you to Patrick who has been working so hard every spare minute for weeks now. Painting, hanging, painting, building, painting, measuring, get the picture. Pre-baby he was always helpful around the house, he loves a good project, but he did not paint. Little did he know his journey to fatherhood would include roughly 72,000 hours holding a paint brush....

Monday, August 15, 2011

Love The One You're With- Chic Coles

Today's Love The One You're With comes from one creative family! I am happy to welcome the lovely ladies from

This Mother/Daughters team is so fun to follow along it is easy to forget you are not actually part of the family.....

We are thrilled to be here to today to share our "Love the one You're with" post! The first few images that came to mind were from a house we own in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. I lived in this house until I was five and ever since then, we have all gathered in this home to celebrate Christmas. The pictures below are summer pictures (hence the greenery outside) but none the less, it is the house that I really do love. The house is old...not like some old houses that were built in the early 1600's but it is still an antique house that has some history.

This room is my room (it used to be the master bedroom with the two beds pushed together) but has since become mine when we stay in the house. There are two windows on the adjacent wall and look out at the large porch and mountains. There is nothing better than waking up to that view. (for photography sake, we used my moms zebra pillows that have been repeated a few times...)

This is my bathroom. It still has the old style sink which makes it very difficult to wash your face when you have hot and cold water coming out of two separate faucets, but I like the charm it holds and i'm glad we kept the original.
The kitchen is one of my favorite places in the whole house. Aside from the many memories it evokes whenever I think about it (from playing restaurant out of that window to making apple sauce in the fall) it is the place where everyone gathers while making dinner and spending time together.
All in all, I think the reason I "Love the one I'm with" with this home, is because it holds some really great memories! Thats what having a home is all about right?

Thank you again Marianne, we wish you the best of luck with you new office, and your new baby!

Thank you Melissa and the rest of the gang, that was a great post. As I was reading it I couldn't help picture Christmas in that house- waking up to snow on the mountains and a warm kitchen filled with family, just perfect!