Personalized Door Mat in 10 Minutes! {DIY Playbook}

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Hey there!  I am back from the Haven Conference and a quick trip to visit Cy’s family in Georgia!  I am still trying to recover and make my way through 6 foot high piles of laundry!  Oh my!  I dislike very greatly doing laundry. 

I will be checking in with you soon with an update about our sweet host daughter, but for now, my buddies, Bridget and Casey from The DIY Playbook, are sharing a quick tutorial with us today!


I haven’t met these ladies in real life, but if they are anything like they are on their blog or in their emails, they are my kind of people!  They are super sweet and super talented!

Click HERE or on the picture below to see how to make one of these cute personalized door mats for yourself!



Have a blessed day!




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Summer Decorating for Less! {320 Sycamore}

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Today’s guest post is by one of the sweetest ladies in blogland!  For reelz!
She is as beautiful on the inside as the outside.  I met her in real life when I first started blogging, and I have always had the utmost respect for her.  She is full of grace and beauty
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I am so honored to have her guest post for me today.  Thank you, Melissa!


It all started with this:
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This truck was parked across the street and I loved colors all together here. And my wheels started turning.


I pulled out this chair that was supposed to be downstairs with the playroom table:

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Then a little of this: june 2010 096

She’s sitting by my front door. I couldn’t leave well enough along, sooo  july 2010 003 1

I pulled out a chunkalicious frame that used to be in my daughters’ room and stuck a flag inside. (if you ever see chunky frames at yard sales or thrift stores, BUY them!)

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Much better. See how the chair is trying to cover up the outlet? Love her even more.july 2010 006 1

I’m trying to cover up my garden hose with these ones…just pretend it isn’t there, k?

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These luscious, REAL topiaries were at Walmart.
Couldn’t put it in my cart fast enough. It used to be tiny and has just taken off.

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Here’s for the red, white, and blue!

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First Day of School Chalkboard Templates {All Things G&D}

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My blog buddy, Dusty, is here today!  I love this girl’s heart and energy!  She has always been so sweet to me, and I am honored to have her hear today!  Thank you, Dusty!!!


Hi everyone! I’m Dusty Rogers from All Things G&D and I am overjoyed to be guest posting for Traci while she and her family enjoy precious time with their sweet little girl. Thank you so much for joining me today!

I have an adorable little girl of my own named Kate, and soon she will be starting kindergarten. With this major milestone on the horizon I’ve got my sights set on “Back to School” and how to mark this special occasion with First Day of School chalkboard sign templates!

Back to School Chalkboard Signs from All Things G&D

My daughter Kate last year on her first day of 4K.

I created my first “Back to School” chalkboard sign last year when Kate started 4K, and – in the interest of having a similar chalkboard sign for every first day of school from now until her senior year – I created similar templates for every grade.

(I got an A+ in planning ahead.)

Click on the link above or the photo below to get your “first day of school” picture-loving self all of the free chalkboard template downloads you need!

Back to School Chalkboard Signs from All Things G&D

Not sure how to use your free template? I’ve got a class on that as well!  (And unlike Statistics 101, this really is easier than you’d think!)  Simply click, watch, and wow ’em.

Pretty simple, huh?

Before I go, I’ve got to send a great big thank you to Traci for sharing all of you with me today!  If you’d like to check out my little patch of internet, please feel free to join me at All Things G&D where I’m all about balancing high maintenance tendencies with a desire to keep things simple.  Thank you!

Dusty Rogers | All Things G&D

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Pantry Organization Inspiration! {Organizing Made Fun}

Hey friends!  I hope you had a great weekend!  
It has been stormy in these parts and will continue to be today.  No going to the pool for us! :)
We had a great weekend in Nashville this past weekend, and some really exciting stuff is going on in our family, but unfortunately I am not allowed to share anything about it online.  :(   But as soon as I can, I promise I will! :)
summer spectacular
Today we have another wonderful guest post from a sweet friend of mine, Becky, from  Organizing Made Fun!  I met Becky many years ago when I first started blogging.  She is my “west coast friend.”  :)  I don’t get to see her as often as I would like, but every now and then we will end up at a conference together.  She has a wonderful organizing blog (who doesn’t need to be more organized?!,)  and she is sharing her organized pantry with us today!  Yay!!


I am so excited for Traci’s new little one joining them this summer! I’m also excited to share my favorite thing with you – organizing! I’m Becky from Organizing Made Fun and I’m going to share my organized pantry and a few tricks I did in it!
Inside the small walk-in kitchen pantry ::

We live in a 1947 home with all kinds of great character – and even though our kitchen isn’t so great, our walk-in pantry helps ease the pain of not having a fancy kitchen! 

Instead of repainting the shelving that was in the pantry, I used white contact paper. I knew if I painted it, with the amount of moving in and out of the containers, it would be only a matter of time and the paint would be messy looking anyway. So, the contact paper works beautifully!

Inside the small walk-in kitchen pantry ::

Used wallpaper to decorated the wall and help things pop ::

You might also notice that I “wall papered” the inside of my pantry. It’s wall paper I bought on Ebay, but it’s not actually stuck on with glue. I just simply used double sided tape to adhere it. I know myself, I’ll be ready for a change in a few years so this was a great solution!

Organizing food in clear containers makes it easier to see when you are low on something ::

Most of the containers I got at Ikea. I bought the chalkboard labels online at either Zulily or Groopdealz when they are on sale. I love them because it’s easy to change what it says on the label when I use a container for a different food.

Bottles with stoppers on them container all the different vinegars ::

I put my vinegars in bottles with stoppers {also picked up at Ikea}. They look great in there and I love how they all match. I can easily see how much is left in each container at a glance. You’ll notice that I use lots of clear jars. I love being able to see how much is left in each container quickly and easily to help me with meal planning and shopping lists.

Use the back of the door for more food storage ::

I use the back of the door to hold even more food. I use chalkboard label clips to label what is on each shelf. I used cardboard from boxes and spray painted it white to use as a shelf liner since the food would easily fall through the wire shelves. It works great!

Use chalkboard labels and mark the time each pasta needs to cook ::





Since I have taken the pastas out of the original packaging, I mark on each container how long the pasta needs to cook. If I need more detailed instructions, I simply snip off the instructions and tape to the underside of the snap on lid.

Use a tray, have all baking items on it to take in and out of the pantry ::

I have my “baking center” inside the pantry in a tray. It’s easy to take the whole tray out and bring to the counter whenever I bake. These are tupperware containers I’ve had for almost as long as I’ve been married. You can see one lid is a different color since they replaced the original with blue since the green has been discontinued. 

Keep kids chore charts inside the pantry ::

I have my kids’ chore charts inside the pantry. They have daily tasks and lists of what needs to get done before they go to school.

Small walk-in pantry ::

So, there you have it. I hope you’ve got a few more ideas about how to get your pantry organized – or at least a few places inside of it. If you’d like more organizing and DIY inspiration, come and take at look at Organizing Made Fun!


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Celebrating the 4th! {In My Own Style}

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Hey friends!  

Well , we got our sweet little girl on Sunday, and let’s just say that we are all totally smitten with her, especially Cy.  :)  She already has him wrapped around her finger!

I can’t show you her face online, but I can show you side and back views of her, so I will be sharing pictures with you in each post. My favorite picture is when we stopped at McDonald’s on the way home yesterday, and the boys were trying to teach her to say words like “straw” and “ketchup.”    They adore her, and she fits right in with them.  She is all girl, but is a little bit of a tomboy too!  

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Be sure to follow me on instagram for more updates. :)


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I am so excited to have Diane from In My Own Style her today!  I met her several years ago on a trip with The Home Depot.  She has such a sweet and humble spirit even though she is loaded with a TON of talent!  I love her projects, her style, and her made photography skills.  If you do not follow her blog, you should.  :)  You will love it!


Thank you, Diane, for sharing your Fourth of July celebration ideas with us!



A big Hello to all!

When Traci asked me if I would like to share a project for her Summer Spectacular I couldn’t decide on just one. With the 4th of July this Saturday…YES!!!…. It is THIS Saturday. The calendar turns to July this week.

If your family is anything like mine, we always have a party at our house on the 4th.

Here are four easy ways I add the spirt of red, white, and blue to the festivities.



1. Instead of flowers in the door basket to greet our guests, I place 3 small American flags in the basket.

2. When it is time to eat, I tie plastic utensils to paper plates to make it easier for guests to fill their plates along the buffet line. One less thing to hold. Tutorial here.

3. One Dollar Store item is always fun, but putting two together with a little DIY’ing makes for one perfectly festive cake stand.

4. It is always hot on the 4th, so I serve up something red, cool, and refreshing to add to the celebration. Red, white, or blue striped straws are one easy way to make any beverage say…

Happy Fourth of July!

I hope yours is filled with lots of good food, family, friends and fun.

XO Diane

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Spray Dyed T-shirts Tutorial!! {Pretty Handy Girl}

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summer spectacular

We are back for another SUMMER SPECTACULAR  guest post!  Today I am featuring my sweet blog friend, Brittany from Pretty Handy Girl!  I love Brit!  We met through blogging about 5 years ago, and she is a rockstar in my eyes.  What I love about her the most is her huge, generous, loving heart!  She would do anything for anyone.  I am so blessed to have her as a friend!

Today she is sharing a project that would be great to do with the kiddos this summer!

                             Welcome, Brittany!!



Do you have the kids home for summer? Looking for something to do with the children before you pull your hair out? Get them outside and hand them some spray bottles full of RIT dye! This is a fun activity that allows those crazy kids to make their own spray dyed t-shirts. All you need are some spray bottles filled with dye, painter’s tape and blank t-shirts. The results are beautiful and unique!

Hi! I’m Brittany, the DIY tutorial guru over at


I’m excited to share with you this fun summer project to create with the kids. They were easy and fun to make and certainly a project that you can customize to your style. Best of all, the kiddies get outside and do all the work!


  • Painter’s Tape
  • X-acto knife
  • Cutting mat (or plastic cutting board)
  • Print out templates
  • T-shirt
  • Paper grocery bag
  • Clothespins
  • Clothesline
  • Dropcloth
  • Spray bottles
  • RIT dyes
  • Hot water (not boiling)
  • 1 tsp. measuring spoon
  • Safety eye goggles
  • Rubber gloves
  • White vinegar


Lay out an 11″ strip of painter’s tape. Then slightly overlap (about 1/8″) another strip next to the first. Continue until you have approximately a letter-sized rectangle.

Cut free hand designs or print out this graphic to use as a template. I used one with stars (you can download my star template by clicking on this link).

Lay the graphic print on top of the tape mask rectangle. Tape the corners of the paper to hold it still during cutting. Use a very sharp x-acto knife to trace and cut through the graphic shapes. Remove any tape that you won’t be using in the mask.

Slide the shirt over a paper grocery bag. This will keep the dye from bleeding through if the back of the shirt gets saturated (notice I didn’t mention “if the front gets saturated.”) Let your child place the tape masks on their shirts. Or assist them if you want some measure of control over the final product.

Heat a pot of water until it is hot, but not boiling. Pour 1 tsp or more of dye and 1 cup of hot water into each spray bottle. Screw on the lid and swirl the dye to mix. You may need to experiment and add more dye depending on the color intensity you desire. (Remember the shirts will always look darker when wet.) Make sure your plastic spray bottles will withstand the heat before carrying them outside (that would be a huge mistake if they melted and leaked all over your expensive carpet! Then again, if you want a new carpet, go for it!)

Tie the clothesline between two supports and lay out a drop cloth underneath. Use clothespins to pin the paper bags to the line. If you pin the shirts, make sure to move the clothespins to spray underneath them. Outfit the kids with eye goggles, rubber gloves, and old clothes. Hand them the spray bottles and step back while they have fun!

That’s my resourceful 6 year old using two bottles at once.

They had so much fun that they even decorated the backs!

Let the shirts hang on the line until they are not dripping anymore. About 30 minutes.

After the dye has been on the shirts for at least 30 minutes, rinse them out. It’s a good idea to use water and vinegar mix to help set the dyes.

Wash the shirts separately and dry them in the dryer. When you take them out, watch the kids grab them and put them on faster than you can say “heat wave”.

Our shirts definitely turned out lighter than they looked while wet. The red looks a little fushia, but my boys think that real men wear pink and I tend to agree ;-).

I am in love with the results and might just have to make one for myself now.

The star shirts would make great 4th of July or Memorial Day outfits.

How fun to have a shirt with your monogram on it. Wearing it is bound to make your child feel like a superhero!

If you want to see my video for fixing some of the bleed, watch here:

Have a happy rest of your summer!

P.s. Have any questions about the tutorial? You might want to watch the video to see how we made our spray shirts. I need to warn you, my boys decided to get a tad crazy silly during the taping:

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Patriotic Centerpiece {Southern Hospitality!}


Hey friends!   I am so excited to have my sweet, dear friend, Rhoda here on my blog today!  Rhoda holds a special place in my heart because she was one of my mom’s favorite bloggers, and one of the first bloggers that my mom told me to follow over 6 years ago.  Little did Mom know that sweet Rhoda would become one of my closest blog friends and that we would one day plan a blog conference together!  She took me under her wing when I was a new blogger and really introduced me to this wonderful blog world.  Rhoda is like the “matriarch” of home bloggers because she was one of the pioneers in our niche.  I LOVE her!


Welcome, Rhoda!


Happy Summer!

I’m Rhoda with Southern Hospitality, and I’m so excited to be here at Traci’s blog sharing with all her readers. Hope you are all having a wonderful summer so far. I love summer, although the heat this year is already getting to me, but as long as there is a pool nearby, I can stand it.

Since our nation’s birthday is right around the corner, I thought I’d share a patriotic project with you today. This is a cute little project I did last summer for the 4th of July, a patriotic clay pot centerpiece using stripes and stars and of course, red, white and blue, the colors of our American flag.

I’d love to share with you how I did it and invite you back to my blog, Southern Hospitality, for all the details.


Plain clay pots can be painted and decorated for so many special occasions and they are inexpensive and easy to work with.


I started by spray painting all of them white.


And here’s how they turned out with stars and stripes forever! They make a great centerpiece for the 4th of July. That’s the day to show your colors! Stop on over to my blog, Southern Hospitality, for all the details on this project and find lots more inspiration!

Thanks Traci, for having me guest post for you today. Traci is a dear friend of mine and I adore her.

I wish all of you a wonderful summer with family and friends. Summer is the time of year to get outside and enjoy all that this time of year incorporates!


Have a blessed day!

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DIY Patriotic Decor {The Golden Sycamore}

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summer spectacularI am so excited about my next guest poster!  I have never met Allison in person, but I have loved her blog for a while now.  She has the best ideas and her pictures just make me smile! 

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Let’s give her a big Beneath My Heart “Welcome” and be sure to click on the links above the pictures

to visit her blog to see even MORE  inspiration!


Hey guys! I’m Allison from The Golden Sycamore! I’m so honored that Traci asked me to post on her blog today! I’m sure she’s enjoying every minute with her sweet family this summer!

Speaking of summer, I can’t believe it’s here already! I don’t know about you, but when the 4th of July comes around, I feel like we can officially start the summer off. I love spending the 4th with friends and family. Just relaxing, having fun, grilling hotdogs and s’mores (of course!), going to parades and fireworks, and celebrating our beautiful country’s freedom! I’m getting excited just thinking about it!

The 4th is one of my favorite holidays to decorate for, too. It just feels so easy and natural. I always love sharing my patriotic decor ideas this time of year! Here are some of my own personal favorites.

Patriotic Chalkboard Gallery Wall

Vintage chair makeover and patriotic decor -

Fourth of July gallery wall -



USA Vintage Decor

The Golden Sycamore: Vintage Patriotic Decor

The Golden Sycamore: Vintage Patriotic Decor



Home of the Brave Vignette

4th of July Decor - Home of the Brave chalkboard and lots of reds, whites, and blues

Independence Day decor - red, white, and blue patriotic decor

How do you celebrate the 4th? Do you have a big party or is your celebration more low key? I’d love to hear about your traditions in the comments below!

* * *

Want to keep up with what else I’m up to this summer? Be sure to find me on Facebook, Instagram, or on my bloghere!

Allison sig

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It’s a Summer Spectacular!! {The Lettered Cottage}

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Welcome to my Summer Spectacular series!!

summer spectacular

I have an amazing line up of some ROCKSTAR bloggers that will be sharing their favorite summer projects with us!

First up is my bestie, Layla, from The Lettered Cottage!

Layla and I met at a blog conference in 2010, just a few months after my mom passed away.  An instant friendship began, and I am so grateful to have her in my life!  Over the past five years, we have had a lot of fun hanging out in real life.  Our WHOLE family TREASURES Layla and Kevin (and soon to be “Sweet P makes Three!”  :)

Beneath My Lettered Cottage

Welcome, Layla!

Hello, fellow Beneath My “Hearters”! :-D

I’m so excited to be here today! I thought I’d share a simple DIY project that I had fun adding to one of our summer mantel displays a few years back.

Summer Mantel | The Lettered Cottage

It’s an easy-to-make sailboat, that will add so much coastal charm to any vignette!

DIY Wood Sailboat | The Lettered Cottage

All you’ll need is chunk of wood (one that’s pretty flat…especially on the bottom side), a twig (that’s at least as long as the chunk of wood), a piece of scrapbook paper, and two little triangles of fabric. (I cut mine from a of my old pairs of jeans). To create the base, I drilled a hole in the middle of the chunk of wood and filled it with hot glue. While the glue was still wet, I stuck the twig down in it and held it in place while I waited for it to dry. Last but not least, I cut out the paper sails and denim flags, and attached them all with hot glue. And that’s it! Easy, breezy!

Happy Crafting!

Layla Signature





Check out the rest of Layla’s AMAZING blog by clicking on the button below!

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How to Build a Window Box


I wanted to share another project we completed during the Lowe’s Home Makeover in Nashville last month!

How to Build a Window Box 1

I have always loved the look of window boxes!

So I was thrilled to hear that our homeowners in Nashville wanted window boxes on their windows too!  It gave Cy and I a chance to make some, and it gave us practice for the window boxes we will be making for our own home soon.  :)

They are so much easier to make than you would think.

Here are the supplies we used:

 1×8 poplar boards

1/4 x 2 inch poplar trim piece

18 gauge nailer with 1 1/4 inch nails

wood glue

compound miter saw (to cut wood pieces)

Black support brackets (we got ours at Lowe’s)


Important tips that are not included in the video:

1.  Be sure to drill holes in the bottom of the window box to allow for water drainage.

2.  Be sure to let the glue completely dry and set before adding the dirt and flowers.   

3.  You can use “liquid nails” and screws instead of nails to increase the durability of the window box.



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