Target Threshold Easy Organic Throws

I came across these lovely throws on and loved the pattern play, but I was even more impressed that some even came in Queen and King sizes! I love blankets on white beds, and these would be perfect for that, since they are lightweight and have just enough color and just enough texture.

 Prices vary, but nothing over $49

Off Topic: The battle of Psoriasis

Allow me to venture into a personal health post. I do these every once in a while, well, because I can. 
I've been working up the nerve to write a post about this very private battle, that many many of us don't talk about often. It's psoriasis. The ugly, auto immune disease that leaves small flaky circles on your body.

Over the span of 8 years, I'd get a couple of spots here and there. Mostly on my scalp and occasionally on my arms and legs. Nothing really to fret about, and usually sunshine would really help. They were hardly noticeable.

In October, I had an extreme flare up. I panicked. I've always been fortunate enough to have pretty nice skin, so this was a total bash to me. It started out with many spots but when I'd scratch them, they'd become one big monster, a cluster of psoriasis  . Not the little manageable spots.

All brought on by stress. But the stress wasnt going anywhere, so I went into holy crap I need to stop this now, mode. Which, stressed me out even more. The spots I was used to were always small ( pencil eraser tip small ) flakey, and didnt have much color. THIS was a whole new ballgame. I felt like I had burns all over my body, they itched, burned and were red.

I was humiliated. It took a toll on my confidence and for the first time ever, I was insecure of my skin.

I tried:

Epsom Salt Soaks 
All suggested Oils
Dr. Teals Aloe/Lavendar Oil ( helped relieve itch and pain, big time. 3x a day I applied )
Neem Extract ( only helped bring color down )
ItWorks lotion
2 of the strongest steriods on the market 
Coal Tars
Light Therapy 3x a week for 3 months ( did decrease the spread, but didnt take away spots )
Methotrexate ( I do NOT recommend this. I had to do it for insurance purposes to get on my current regimen, it's a wicked drug. )

None of these methods came close to aiding my problem.

It was time to consider shots. However, these shots were to the tune of $12,000 PER SHOT. Bring on more stress, panic and loss of hope. My insurance said no way.
My dermatologist fought on my behalf, and the insurance( Regence ) agreed to a deal, where I'd have to "fail" a treatment ( methotrexate ) in order to move to injectables. She also fought  to get every possible discount and after going through the motions with insurance, I paid a whopping $24 for the YEAR. 
I cried. The ugly cry.

This miracle drug, is called Stelara. You guys. I could be the poster child for this drug. I am beyond thrilled with how this treated me. After ONE shot, I was 100% cured within 2 weeks. I had psoriasis on 90% of my body before Stelara, and put up with it for 6 miserable months. Not wearing anything short sleeved, lots of concealing makeup to cover my face, and really no skin showing anywhere.
I wanted to tell the world about my experience because all the information I had ever looked up were old forums and just old school information.

So here, my friends, is the before and after. I'm telling you, Poster Child.

Left is a few months ago, Right is today.

Pretty crazy ugly right? Now you understand my ugly cry, and then my clicking of the heels when stelara actually worked.
You can see I AM scarred from the spots, and from all the steroid creams that took the pigment out of my skin, but they've faded drastically with time in the sun.

I get a shot 3 times a year, I can do it at home now, and have absolutely no side effects.

I know this is a weird post, to be talking about a drug, but I'm hoping that I'll encourage the hopeless.
If your insurance denies you the first time, try try again. Its WORTH fighting for.

I dont have any scars on my face, praise Jesus.

Its such an embarrassing battle, that I'm so thrilled that I've conquered with this miracle drug.
There is still no cure for psoriasis, and without these shots I would continue to have flare ups.
Feel free to email me and chat about it!

Update on my Hydrangea Experiment!

Two things to follow up on:

1. HERE I talked about getting your hydrangea to bloom, by using coffee grounds. I'm happy to report that 2 out of 3 of them are bursting with glorious blooms. It really does work! The problem with the one, was it only put out 2 blooms, but, its also a species I'm not fond of (Lacecap) so I'm not crying over it.

2. Changing the PH of your soil, in most cases, can change your hydrangea color. ( like I said before though, white hydrangeas usually do not change color, and consider yourself lucky if you have a white mophead hydrangea )
2 years ago I dumped wood ash over 2 of my hydrangeas. They were the classic blue that is very common, but I was looking to see if I could get a change out of them. So THAT next spring, it changed to purple and then burgundy in the fall. I was in love. Then THIS year, they are PINK. I am completely thrown. I plan on trying to neutralize the soil this winter to get back to purple, OR I'll dump MORE ash on it, to see if it'll give me dark dark pink. Reguardless, it's a fun experiment.

Here are a few unedited pics I took today of all the different colors and species I have in my yard today. 

My Mopheads:

( This first one was bright blue 2 years ago )

One of my Lacecaps:

Marshalls Mega Clearance Lanterns

I. Just. Can't. Stop. Buying lanterns, that is. But I refuse to pay over $20 for one, because, I hoard them and it'd get expensive if I allowed myself to buy any one I'd lay my eyes on. I had been looking for ones for my porch but wanted them big, so I was stoked to find these 2  bad boys on clearance. Mega clearance. The original prices were $110 // then Marshalls marked at $59 // and I paid $12. TWELVE a piece. I was thrilled.

Here it is at Wysada..( $245 originally? ya right. )

And I gotta say, I love LED candles with Timers on them. They turn on at twilight!

Target Summer Clearance. Run!

I got the thrill of going to Target tonight, without my kids. *singing the Hallelujah Chorus*
I took my sweet time. I went down every. stinking. aisle. Ok, except the kids clothes because I'm forcing myself to stop spending on kids clothes this month. I digress. 

My Target is famous for mispricing things to my benefit. The sign will say 30% but the items will be 50-70% off. So people may glance down the aisle and see 30, and keep on walkin, but I know better, and you should too! Stop and look at the magical red clearance sticker, dont depend on the signs.

At my Targets, they are clearancing their nautical line, so all the roped lanterns, faux sea life, nautical mirrors and baskets are 70% off. ( everything is still full price online ) Here's the proof

The white is fun, but you could also just spraypaint them whatever color. Gold? ( that big one is only $11)

I had my eye on this giant tray for awhile, but wasnt about to pay $34.99. It was marked down to $10, so I grabbed it. I thought I could hang it on the wall somewhere if I got sick of it on the table.

And here it is in play

Not too shabby eh? Better than paying $69 for the Pottery Barn Beachcomber basket!

Other clearance included ALL of the Threshold Outdoor Furniture, Outdoor upholstery and Planters.

E-Design Openings and a perk for booking!

I have a few spots open for July E-Design! Are you ready to refresh that bedroom of yours? How about that naked hallway? Or do you have a room that needs a new furniture arrangement? I'd love to help you feel good about your home. Click on design services on the above tabs and take the quiz! It's easy and painless. Take advantage of this offer!

ps. Thanks for the emails // Facebook love for my last post! I enjoyed reading your support and laughs

I feel I need to apologize // Lets get real.

I did a post like this a couple of years ago, and cannot find it!
Lets get real here folks. I'm a mom of 2 little ones, with a lot goin on usually, and my house, is far from tidy 7 days a week. Far. From. It. Us bloggers are guilty of staging the room, making sure the lighting is fair, the floors are vaccuumed/dusted, sometimes fresh flowers are even in a shot and everything is in it's place.

I want to apologize for misleading you. My home is not pristine on a daily basis. Oh no.

So welcome to my reality. Left is what I've blogged...Right is, well, real life.

This one is my favorite. ( left is an old pic ) but literally, MOST of the time, my clean laundry has piled up. On top of the dryer is usually randoms. Toys. Sunscreen. A random chicken feed!

Scarf on the lamp. Rug pushed aside, slippers out, cords not taped properly ( gasp! )And I make my bed, at best, twice a week. True story.

I'm a mom. I'm busy. I don't have the ability to join people in "one room challenges" because I dont have endless funds to drop on any one room at any moment. And quite frankly if I did, I'd be going on vacations a lot more.
To my credit, my house is clean. It's not tidy 100% of the the time, but it's clean. 

There is always a space in my house that I want to bomb. I'm ever changing it seems :)

Pinterest has ruined it for us, in many ways. ( dont get me wrong, it's a great resource, and I use it ) It's got us aiming for perfection, and guess what? We will never get there. Even if you did, I promise, it will not fulfill you. You should know that by now. Someone is always going to have a brand new kitchen. Someone is always going to spend that $3,000 Restoration Hardware Chandelier. There are plenty of "one uppers" out there to make you feel lesser than you are.

I try to be as real as I can and will continue to strive to be relatable! So just remember when you see me ( or most bloggers ) posting a pristine picture, they had to work to get it to look magazine worthy, I guarantee it aint like that on the regular. If you find yourself struggling because you feel your house isnt magazine worthy or whatever, remember, I feel ya. And know I'm likely scrubbing my blankety blank microfiber sofas from a milk spill or mopping the mudroom floor because someone tracked in chicken shit.

Thank you to the sweet recent emails and feedback on my lil blog, I appreciate my readers and love hearing of your finds and just encouraging compliments!

Fun Fashion Knockoff! Michael Kors vs Target

I was overdue for a new pair of black wedges, and I had pinned these awesome Michael Kors, and thought who am I kidding? I'm too cheap to buy a pair of $99 wedges. Especially since they are really for the summer season. So I kinda just shrugged my shoulders and popped over to To my pleasant surprise, Merona had a version of MK's. I thought, why not blog about it. I love me some good fashion finds, and so do you.

They arrived today and I'm thrilled with the quality! I couldnt decide if I wanted the black or the nude, but ended up with this guy. Dont forget to use your Target Red Card for the free ship and extra 5%. As if I have to remind you.

Follow the arrow trend >>> Steph's Favorites

Move over anchors. Arrows are hot right now. Katniss lovers rejoice. I personally am loving this trend ( as I did with the anchors ) and love to see it in kids rooms and in accessories. I'm not about to paint a wall full of arrows or get a tattoo, but I'll enjoy it in small ways instead. It'll be out before we know it, so lets enjoy it while it's here! From tea towels, to drawer pulls, to marquee signs, Here are a few of my favorites.

Before/Progress of New Hallway

It's been a whirlwind 4 weeks, but I'm glad to get back to blogging. I've been swamped with sickness, daughter broke her arm, clients, neck issues, a death in the family  and other stuff that has been overwhelming!

Lets get back to it.

This Hallway has been a thorn in my side. I have done NOTHING to it in 5 years. FIVE. It's a( one of the) room in my house that kinda eats away at me in the back of my head. It had this really ugly builder grade tan paint that looked like old throw up. I had an cabinet ( on the left, it's hard to see ) as you walked through the doorway, and it was just fug and unused.

I wanted it to be treated like a room. It's a fairly busy hallway, I might as well enjoy it, right? A hall should be treated like a room. I had originally planned for a mighty photo gallery. But like always, as I let it marinate in my brain, I just couldnt pull the trigger. Its a good sized wall, it'd take a LOT of frames to look right, and I already have a photo gallery going up the stairs, nearby.

So I moved on.

I created a design board all around this wonderful Safavieh Table that I've used in a couple of my client's homes. I wanted it for my own. I had a Overstock coupon burning a hold in my inbox, and I sold an old piece of furniture so I paid very little for it. ( just over $100 ) I didnt really have a budget for this "room" so it had to be well under $200. It's just skinny enough not to be a clunky piece of furniture that's in the way. I already had the nautical rope mirror, the mirrored tray and lantern.

Here was my very simple, clean concept:

And here we are today: ( not quite finished )

Nice before eh? As if I needed to write "before" on the bottom of the pic.
Still some small details to be added! You cant quite see the difference in paint in the second photo, but once I'm completely done it'll be more detailed. It's a nice blue gray.

Bringing in that rug ( another Safavieh ) really made a difference.  The table is great, and actually makes the room feel bigger than it is. By the time I post my after I'll have another flower up. My lovely snowball tree really put out for me this year, unfortunately they dont last too long.

The light fixture has been annoying to find, I'm choosing to be stubborn and I do not want to spend more than $75. I'll likely turn to Ebay at this point and buy something used.

That's all for now folks!

Hydrangea Not Budding? Here's my solution!

I'm a hydrangea hoarder. There, I said it. So when I bought a hydrangea from craigslist 2 years ago and it wasnt blooming, I was a sad panda. I fertilized it with fish fertilizer, I dug it up and moved it, Made sure it was facing East, I pruned it properly, Sang some Peter Cetera to her...NOTHING. Not a single bud.

So last week, I took some used coffee grounds and scattered it at the roots, I did quite a bit ( probably 4 cups worth )

And I kid you not, a week later, the entire plant was bursting with buds.
I nearly cried. Nearly.

I've always known that you can change the color of your hydrangeas ( most of the time ) by changing the PH of your soil ( I threw ash on mine last year and they went from purple to mauvey pink mix mid summer ) and knew that coffee grounds were good for them after they bloom, but never thought to do it before.

Steph's Mother's Day Gift Ideas

If you're looking for some last minute gift ideas, here are a few suggestions! Now, I didnt just randomly pick these items, they are things I either own, or have used in a client's home. My pistachio Kitchenaid mixer, was one of my favorite birthday gifts. Yes, it's a spendy suggestion, but worth it. The rest of the items are under $75.

 I'm obsessed with the new Versace Bright Crystal Absolut, it's my new go to. It's sexy and fruity and clean!
My favorite candle ever, is Volcano, by Capri Blue, it's most likely one of the scents you smell when you walk into Anthropologie. I also love giving and receiving ( giggle )...hanging flower baskets. Who doesnt love that?
The Revlon Colorburst sticks are serious business. Believe the hype ya'll. I have 3, and need more, there's a color for everyone and they are so easy to apply.
 I'd also like to pimp out Real Techniques Brushes from Ulta. Chances are, your mom ( or you ) need updated brushes. I'll admit, it had been years since I bought new ones, and these feel luxurious without paying out the rear. In fact, they are buy 1 get 1 50% off right now, and dont forget your $3.50 off $10 coupon online.

 A couple other home ideas for mom would be to gift her a jewelry box or shadow box to display her beauties. A great throw ( I love the one posted ) and a couple cloches to go on top of a dresser or entry table would be fun additions to her home. Fun soaps? A nude/tan bag? Go check them out!

Coffee Table Knockoff // Bed Bath and Beyond vs ZGallerie

My sister bought this ZGallerie table, years ago, and it was such a great purchase. I love this table. Even with a BBB coupon, ZGallerie still beats their price.

high low fiber coffee table

Steph's Top Favorites From Around The Yard!

The older I get, the more I love my yard and actually enjoy landscaping. I've become my mother. I have a variety of plants, trees and flowers around my yard that I adore, and thought I'd share my favorites. These are the guys I always fall back on and have yet to let me down.

Steph's Yard Faves

Other greats are, Autumn Sedum, Rosemary, Various Grasses and Wisteria ( which is a beast! )
What are your faves?

E-Design and Current Design Boards

I've been having fun meeting new people from all over the US of A. I love seeing all the different styles of homes you live in, what tastes you have and what your desires are for your homes! I love the challenge of getting into your brains and pulling out your visions and achieving them with you.

This client, from Pennsylvania, has an office that has been neglected. It's for her husband, so she wanted it to be masculine but "not too heavy with leathers and black."
She wanted a complete overhaul so none of her existing furniture stayed, per her request. She did have a fiddle leaf tree, which, she amazingly has kept alive for years. ( I cant keep one alive for a month )

My client, Maureen, just moved into a new home and needed to fill her guestroom. She has a large family that visits often, and lucky for her she has a beautiful large room with 2 large windows. She'll be able to fit these beautiful beds and gorgeous rug in there nicely. She has very traditional taste and wanted it to feel "clean and airy." Would you believe that wonderful dresser is at Target?

Sometimes people are just looking for new ideas for small spaces, such as entryways. This young bachelorette has a narrow entryway with no windows, but with some tall board and batten and a bold mirror and stand out runner, the space wont seem as small. I loved this one!

I'm currently accepting clients for May/June E-Design. Contact me for more info! I work with many different budgets, so don't you worry about that part!