Our Merry Christmas Entry Way!

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Hey friends!

Tomorrow is December 1st, and it’s time to get our decorating mojo on! :)

I have decided not to decorate a ton this year.  I usually put a little bit of Christmas decor in every room of the house, but this year, I am just doing our den and entry way.  We’ve never had an entry way to decorate in this home until this year when we built our new front porch.  So I was super excited about having a welcoming entry way with lots of Christmas spirit to welcome my guests. :)

Here it is….

Christmas entry way

I moved the bench from our kitchen into this space so our guests have a place to sit and take off their shoes, or just sit by the tree and drink hot chocolate. 

Because this space is a little long and narrow, I needed a rug to fill it.  I knew exactly which rug I wanted!  I have been in love with Dash & Albert rugs for a looooong time!  I wish I had one in every room!  

Stripes are my favorite, and I chose a neutral color so that I can use it throughout the whole year in this space and it will go with any decor. 

Isn’t it perfect?!!


Here is a description of the rug I chose:

Screen Shot 2015-11-30 at 9.58.43 AM

And their CYBER WEEKEND SALE has it at 25% off right now!

My boys favorite part of our entry way decor is my new Fresh America “Fur and Feather” advent calendar!  We have never had an advent calendar like this one, so they are super excited to see what surprise is in each pocket!


I’m in love with this little calendar!  It has a cute little animal on each pocket, and of course, you know that I love the red, white, tan, and black color combo….my favorite!  (It doesn’t come with the brown metal button at the top.  I had that left over from the boy’s bathroom mirrors and decided to use it here.)

Each little pocket is filled with a candy treat that is wrapped to keep it a surprise.  I can’t wait to see my boys faces as they open each one.  :)


When I found this Fur and Feather advent calendar, I also discovered the Fresh American Style blog, and it is wonderful! You can check it out HERE.

Do you use an advent calendar during the Christmas season?  I just love counting down the days til Christmas with an advent calendar!


I moved the white table from our den under the advent calendar and added some birch wood in a green metal basket beside it. 


The tree is from Hobby Lobby, and it looks so pretty a lit up at night!


Our entry way is all dressed up and ready for December!!!  Yay!!  


It’s such a happy little space. :) 

Christmas here we come!!

I hope you are beginning to enjoy this Christmas season and all of the wonderful traditions it holds!  Be sure to make some hot cocoa and stir it with a candy cane, make some buckeyes (our favorite Christmas tradition,) watch Polar Express, and snuggle in some cozy pajamas!  Isn’t this time of year the best?!

gift giving

*This post was sponsored by Dash and Albert and Fresh American.  I was given product to review and style, but the opinions were 100% mine!  

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BMH Blog Readers’ Christmas Home Tours!


Hey friends!

I am so excited to share this announcement with you!

I am hosting my first every Beneath My Heart Blog Readers’ Christmas Home Tours!


Reader's Christmas Home Tours



There are a lot of very talented bloggers in blogland that will be participating in Christmas home tours this year and sharing them with all of you.  However, there are MANY BLOG READERS who have equally beautiful homes all decked out for Christmas, and we never get to see them here online.

I want to change that!

I want to show off YOUR homes this Christmas season!

Would you help me out?


Here’s what I need you to do!

Take some pictures of your holiday home decor and send them [email protected] between now and December 11th.

Just a few of your favorite pictures will do!  Be sure to send me your first name and the state in which you live for me to include in the tour.  :)

Tips for taking good pictures:

1.  Don’t use your flash.  I know, it seems weird, but if you take your pictures during the day, you should be able to get enough light for your pictures to turn out good.  (I also can lighten them on my computer if they seem dark.) 

2.  Take some close up pictures of small vignettes as well as whole room shots.  We usually want to take only whole room shots of our Christmas decor, but it is nice to zoom in and focus on smaller areas of your decor as well.

3.  Try not to send me pictures that are too small to see.  :)  Usually pictures at least 700 pixels wide or more will work fine.   I would rather them be too big than too small because I can always resize them smaller on my blog if I need to.

thank you



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It Matters {Part One}


In one week, we will be celebrating Thanksgiving.  

Thanksgiving was one of my mom’s favorite holidays.  I remember her fussing every year about how people were starting to skip over Thanksgiving and go straight to Christmas.  She felt it was very special to take time to be thankful and sharing that thankfulness with others.  

I miss my mom.  I found an video of her on my old computer yesterday, and oh the sound of her voice!….

My mom taught me SO MUCH, and she guided me to be the person I am today.  I am so thankful for her!

Today, I wanted to repost a very special post to me in honor of my mom and her beautiful life.  


{This post was originally shared on January 6, 2010.}

I am writing this post today because my mom told me to.
No, I did not hear her voice in a dream or a vision.
She told me herself a couple of weeks before she passed away.
She told me to write a post called, “It Matters.”
Let me explain…
When we found out Mom had cancer, something amazing happened. I witnessed something I had never seen quite so clearly before. I saw the Love of God in action through others!
For the seven short weeks she lived after her diagnosis, I saw other people reach out to her and our family in more ways than I could have ever thought possible.
Mom was showered with cards, phone calls, visits, meals, and countless prayers.
And here is what I learned…IT MATTERS!

Mom was going through the most trying time of her life, and so were we. Our hearts were breaking, our lives were turned upside down. Yet in the mist of the rubble, we were daily being “built up” by the love of others.

So many of our family members and friends brought us meals… almost every night. When we had been at the doctor all day long with mom and came home to find a warm meal on the table made by loving hands, I realized…IT MATTERS.

Mom received a ton of cards in the mail. Sometimes 30 or more a day! Mom would read each and every one of those letters. Some made her smile, some brought her to tears, but ALL of them gave her encouragement, and I realized….IT MATTERS.

There were many other ways Mom was blessed by others during her illness…
Gift cards to restaurants
Food for her pantry
Money to help with medical bills
Stamps to help with her letter writing (Mom loved to write others even when she was sick.)
Books to read
Tapes to listen to
Phone calls
and the list goes on and on….
And as I sat and watched others pour out their love to my mom, I realized…IT MATTERS.
One night Mom was laying on her bed, and I was in the chair next to her, and we were talking about all the blessings we had received from others. I was in awe of what a difference it made in our ability to make it through each day. The prayers and actions of other believers actually made us stronger. And it made us thankful. I told Mom that I couldn’t believe how much it really mattered. That’s when she told me I should write a post about it. She told me to encourage others to take time to do the “little” things in life that make a big difference for Christ.
I have grown up in church and have had many opportunities to minister to others who were going through difficulties. Sometimes I took advantage of those opportunities, sometimes I didn’t. When Mom got sick, I found myself on the receiving end of those ministries. I had so many of my friends and family members bring meals to my home, send me cards to let me know they were praying for me, and even babysit my kids so I could spend as much time with Mom as possible. What a blessing! And I realized more than ever…IT MATTERS.
It changed me. Since Mom has passed away, I have been faced with opportunities to reach out to others in need. I look at those opportunities differently now. For now I know what a difference they can make in someone’s life, including mine.
If you are presented with an opportunity to reach out to someone in need this week or in the future, I want to encourage you to do so. Send a card, take a meal, or make a phone call; whatever it may be….
And may God bless you for blessing others,


(I will share PART II of this post tomorrow.)


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Overcome Evil with Good


Sweet friends,

I know that your heart is heavy like mine by what happened in Paris this weekend.  It is hard to watch the news without feeling overwhelmed with fear and worry.  

We worry if something like that is about to happen again here at home.

We worry about the future and safety of our children.

We worry about how this evil will ever end?

I’m right there with you, friends. 

Yesterday morning, before the boys woke up, I sat on my couch with my mom’s bible and read scripture.  When my heart is full of unrest, His word brings me peace.  I am reminded that He is STILL God even when things like Paris happen.  I am reminded that there is way more to this life than just living it.  It is about Him.  

The reality is that all of our lives will end someday.  Sorry, not trying to be insensitive, but it is true.  None of us is promised tomorrow.  That does not bring me worry because I know that the end of this earthly life means that I will spend eternity in heaven with Jesus.  Because He is my Savior.  He is THE way, THE truth, and THE life, no one comes to the Father but through HIM.  (John 14:6)

Even though I understand what will happen at the end of my life, it is still hard sometimes to make sense of what happens in my life on earth.  We can make ourselves go crazy trying to make sense of it.  However, the infinite ways of God will never make sense to our finite minds while we are here on earth.

But His word gives us direction..

Romans 12:21 says, “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”   Another modern-day translation of that verse says, “Don’t let evil get the best of you; get the best of evil by doing good. (The Message)

By doing good.

When I read that, I thought, “What if everyone in the world did an act of goodness in response to the evil acts in Paris?”

The terrorists want to bring fear and evil into our hearts, but when we do good to others in our lives, we are doing the opposite of what they want to accomplish.  I love the thought of that. 

So today, and everyday, I am going to ask God to show me how to share His love with others, how can I serve them, how can I do good toward them?  It may be as simple as sending a card to someone who is going through a hard time.  It may be to take someone a meal, or maybe help someone less fortunate with Christmas or their electric bill.  Maybe it is simply attending church and worshipping with other believers.  So much good can come out of worshipping with others.  Spend time in God’s word.  Pray with your family.  Overcome evil with good.


Will you join me this week in doing acts of goodness and love to those around you?  We may not be able to directly help the hurting in Paris, but there are many hurting people all around us at school, at work, in our neighborhood.  Let’s overcome evil by doing good to them.  Let goodness win!

I am praying for the people of Paris, and for everyone reading this post today.  May your hearts be touched by the Love of God and may you feel and know the peace that only He can give. 

God bless you, friends!

Have a blessed day!

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Her Pink Door!


Hey friends!

I wanted to share the story behind our girl’s pink door in her room!

First off, her room and her closet has not had a door on it, like ever.  We took them off years ago because we used it as a playroom, and I didn’t like the boys closing the door to the playroom.

And we didn’t have doors in her room when she was here this past summer.  (The boys have never had doors on their rooms either until last week!)  We are the door-less family. ;)

I had wanted to find doors for her room before she was with us this summer, but I couldn’t find the right ones.  I wanted old, solid wood doors, specifically 5 panel doors.  I would visit the Habitat ReStore every week but couldn’t find them.  I would find one, but not two.  Or they were a few inches too narrow, or too tall, etc. 

However, I reeeeeally wanted her room to have doors before she was here for Christmas, so I kept on looking.  The weekend before last, I hit the jackpot!

I found two old, solid wood doors at the Habitat Restore for $55 a piece!  That was actually a little more than I wanted to pay, but I snatched them up because I didn’t know when I would find two matching doors again.  


They weren’t five paneled doors, but they were old, heavy, and had the original, cute little brass doorknobs.  SOLD!


I was by myself, so I loaded these heavy doors into the back of my suburban, breaking the reading glasses on top of my head while I was doing it!  It wasn’t a pretty site, but I got them in there!

When I got home, Cy unloaded them and placed them in her room.  He leaned one up against the door to her room, and placed the other one by her closet.  When I walked in the room, I looked at the door by the closet and said, “Is that pink?!!”

I couldn’t believe my eyes!  It was the perfect shade of pink for my little girl’s room!



In all of the time that I looked at these doors at the store, loaded them in the car, and unloaded them at home, I never noticed that one side of one door was PINK!  What are the chances?!




Cy had to change the direction of the lock for the pink side of the door to show.   All I did was clean both doors real good with Thieves cleaner and a magic eraser.  You can see that there are some holes at the middle top of the door that I will eventually try to find something to place over them.  I would fill them in with wood filler, but since I don’t have the original color of paint to paint over them, I think I will leave them alone.  

These doors are probably 70-80 years old, so I will seal the paint with a satin poly in case it has lead in it. 

 The door to her room is an off white color, and I was going to paint it a fresh coat of white, but Cy likes the look of the original paint, so I am going to leave it alone for now.  You can see a little bit of that door in the bottom right of the picture below.


I think it is super cool that the pink door is almost the exact same color as the rug that I have on the right side of her bed.  It kind of balances it all out. 

So there you have it!  The story behind the pink door!  

It was just “meant to be” in my little girl’s room.  Now I am glad that I had the patience to wait so long to find exactly the right doors for her room.  “Good things come to those who wait!”

If you missed my other posts about her room, you can find them HERE and HERE.


Have a blessed day!

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What I Learned by Being Away From Home for a Month!


I’M HOME!!!!

Y’all, I left my beautiful state of Kentucky on September 21st, and I just got back this past Saturday night, October 17th!  That is just plain crazy!  There were times I didn’t think I was going to make it, but I survived.  Luckily, I got to see Cy and my boys a couple of days during the last week of my stay.  That was a life-saver!  We all flew home together on Saturday, and it feels sooooooooo good to be back home.

There are several things that I learned about being gone from home for a month, and I want to share them with you.



1.  If you leave Tilapia in the refrigerator for a month, it will stink up the whole house.A woman holding a fish at arms length whilst wearing pink rubber gloves and a clothes peg on her nose. Isolated on white background, focus on the fish.

When we arrived home Saturday, we opened the back door and was confronted with the smell of something rotting.  It was the worse smell ever!!!  Not a good feeling.   It took us a while to figure out where it was coming from, but the culprit was some Tilapia that I had bought before I left, and it was wrapped in brown paper sitting in the back of the fridge.  Cy didn’t know it was there and never disposed of it while I was gone.  We had to take everything out of the fridge and threw 95% of it away.  The smell was still in the fridge the next day, so we had to clean the whole thing with Thieves cleaner and some bleach water.  Finally, the smell started to disappear.  Y’all, stinky fish is NO JOKE.  If you ever go on an extended trip, make sure all fish is out of the fridge! 



2.  If I die, my husband and sons will drown in laundry.

th-6My sweet hubby did a great job of holding things together while I was gone for four weeks, but one thing that he wasn’t able to keep a handle on was the laundry.  When I got home, the entire kitchen table was covered in mounds of clothes.  I said, “Cy, did you not do laundry?!!”  He said, “Yes, those are all the clothes I washed!”   “Why are they on the kitchen table?”  He explained that he didn’t have time to fold them.  So I guess my boys were just getting their school clothes off the kitchen table each day instead of out of their closets!   There were piles of dirty clothes all over the house.  It looked like a college frat house instead of the home I left four weeks earlier.  And it made me understand even more why God created Eve.  :)




3.  I am even more in awe of the sacrifices our military makes for our freedom.



I was only gone one month, and it seemed like an eternity.  I stayed at a very nice hotel and had all my meals paid for, yet still f
elt like I was “suffering.”   I missed my home and my family like CRAZY!!  How do our military men and women do it?!!

They leave their families for time on end so that we can be free to be with ours everyday.  

I am so grateful and humbled.  May God bless our military.  






4.  There is no place like home!


I felt like I already knew this, but man, it was really reinforced in my life this past month.  There is nothing better than the safety and comfort of home.  Nothing.

Nothing better than your own bed.  Nothing better than snuggling with your kids on the couch.  Nothing better than a home cooked meal around the table.  Nothing better than being surrounded by those you love most.  Nothing.

I am so very thankful for my home.




I am trying to get back into the swings of things around here.  I will be doing laundry 24/7 to get caught back up.  :)  The scary thing is that I have never enjoyed doing laundry more than I do right now.  The mundane, every day type of things are so precious to me right now because I have missed being home and being a mom so much!  (I’m sure it will wear off pretty quickly, but hey, I will enjoy it while it lasts!)

I know many of you are wondering why I was gone so long, and I really, really wish I could tell you, but I can’t.  :(

But believe you me, as soon as I am allowed, y’all will be the first to know!  (And you are going to die! ACK!)

Have a blessed day, friends!

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West Coast Update!


Hey friends!

I’m sending you a big hug and kisses from the sunny west coast!  


It’s been a crazy week.  

The day after I left (Tuesday,) Cy woke up with a swollen, sore, and inflamed elbow.   Wednesday it got worse, and that night, he had the chills and a fever.  I tried to tell him to go to the doctor, but he wanted to wait another day to see what happened.  

Adam called me Thursday night (from the bathroom) crying because he was worried about Cy.  Adam deals with anxiety issues anyway, so having his dad sick and unable to get out of bed and his mom across the country, was not a good combo.  He was very upset and couldn’t go to sleep.  We prayed together, and I reassured him that everything would be okay.  

The next day, Cy was even worse and his elbow was even more red and more swollen.  He went to the doctor on Friday morning, and they drain the fluid from his elbow and tested his blood.  Most likely, it is a bacterial infection in his blood, which  can be very dangerous, but we do not know for sure yet.   I was VERY concerned, especially because the doctor was very concerned.  He gave Cy is personal cell phone and asked him to call him any hour of the day or night to let him know if he was getting any worse.  If it did spread or his fever continued, he would need to be admitted to the hospital!

Luckily the pain medicine and antibiotics he was prescribed on Friday seem to be helping some. 

Cy’s dad drove 8 hours up from Georgia to be with Cy and the boys.  His mom had to stay in Georgia to care for her own mother who has been in poor health lately.  My sister brought them dinner Friday night, and our sweet friends, Kim and Joe provided food Saturday night.  Cy has been in a lot of pain and very fatigued. 

He goes back to the doctor tomorrow to get the results from the blood tests.  

I would appreciate your prayers for him and my boys.  It is not easy to be so far away from him during this time.  I have another three weeks in California before I get to go home. :(

It’s in times like these that I treasure the peace that only God can give.  





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My New Favorite Monogrammed Accessories!


Guys!  I think you are going to love what I am going to show you today!  It’s the kind of stuff that most every women gets excited about, even those die-hard, paint splattered, DIY’ers like me!



Ack!  I love it!   Purses, bags, jewelry, key chains, and on and on….

And then throw a monogram on it and GOOD GLORY!  It’s enough to make this ol’ southern gal pass out!  We love us some monograms here in the south!

My sweet, sweet friend, Leslie, has started selling these beautiful items from Initials, Inc., and I went to a party of hers a couple of months ago.  I ordered several things including the “toiletry organizer” and the “kiss lock clutch.”  I absolutely love them both and use them all the time. 

I told her I would host a party for her last month, and with everything I had going on, I didn’t plan well and wasn’t able to host it.


But then I got the idea to just host an online party and share it on my blog.  duh.  Why didn’t I think of that in the first place?!  

I try to be selective about what products to share on my blog, but these are so stinkin’ cute that I knew y’all would love them.  And this is the perfect time of year because they have all types of cute bags, backpacks, and totes just in time for the school year.  And what women doesn’t like to treat herself to a new purse every once and a while?

These products have been featured in all types of magazines, and I can see why!  They are adorable!!


The new fall line is out, and they have all types of new prints to choose from.  :)  Check out this beautiful monogrammed luggage they have! This would be great for young adults heading off to college.  I may get some for myself since I will be hopefully traveling a lot this year.  :)


All of these pictures are from their magazine.  I was afraid some of you wouldn’t click over to view their magazine, so I screenshot a bunch of the pictures to share with you here.  I knew you would die when you saw all of the cuteness for yourself! :)

I got the toiletry organizer that you see below.  I have loved taking it with me when I travel.  


This “One Trip Wonder” bag is one of their most popular.  It is huge and is perfect for overnight trips.  How cute is that Paisley pattern?


If you have little ones, you will love the “Oh Baby Backpack” or “Stash and Dash” bag.  


Okay, check out the Cheetah print on the bags below.  They make me want to grit my teeth and say “oh my goodness!”


The great thing about these products is that you can pick any fabric you want, any type of monogram, and any type of font!  I love that it is so personalized!!!

I think these “Get a Grip” totes are perfect for DIY’ers!  They would be great to store crafting supplies, wrapping supplies, or even some tools!  

And these “Help on Wheels” organizers would be a great teacher gift!


I know that a lot of us are starting to organize our command centers, mud rooms, closets, etc to get ready for the new school year. Check out all of these items to help get you organized!


I’ve got my eye on the “Signature Mod Back Pack!”  Check out the four ways you can wear it on the right side of the picture!  So versatile!  And I love the back sacks for children that can be personalized with their names!


Here are some more great items for back to school (or preschool.)  


Now for those of you that need a new handbag for fall, you would love these satchels!  How cute are the monogramed tags?


And if you need a little big of a bigger purse, you may like these totes….



And if you are not a bag type of person, you may like some of their jewelry!


So what do you think?  Isn’t their stuff beautiful and adorable?!  I seriously love it, and they are not over the top expensive.  

Especially for the fact that you get to pick your fabric and get FREE personalization. 

So, if you want to check out even more of their products and order something from my online party, click on the button below. 

UntitledHappy Shopping!

If my name doesn’t appear somewhere on the page, just click on the “my events” link in the right hand corner, and then click on my party.  Thanks!

(Let me know if you have any questions at all by emailing me at [email protected])

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My “really” Dad


Our pastor shared this video in church this morning, and I had to share it with you in case you hadn’t see it yet.  It really hit home with me because in ONE WEEK, we will be hosting a father-less little girl in our home.  I can’t imagine what it would have been like for me to grow up without my father.  He was my rock and gave me such a great example of God’s love for me. 

But not everyone grows up with a good earthly father.  And yet, everyone of us have a chance to experience the amazing, constant, trustworthy, never-ending love of a Heavenly Father.  His love is beyond compare!  He is not a pretend dad, or a partial dad, but a “REALLY” dad.  And we are his “really” children. 

Just take it from these two!….

Happy Father’s Day!!



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Two FUN Announcements!

Leave a Comment

Hey, hey!

I hope you have had a good week!  We have had a hot and steamy one.  This weekend the tropical storm from Texas is finally making its way into the Bluegrass.  It’s going to be a very wet Saturday for us.   But that is okay because we have a ton of work to do in the house this weekend.  We need to finish the entryway and the boys’ bunk beds. 

Did you see the sneak peek of their bunk beds on Instagram? 

If not, click on the button below to check it out and follow me while you are there! :)





I have two fun announcements to share with you this weekend!


Starting next week, some of your favorite bloggers will be sharing their favorite summer posts here at Beneath My Heart!!  I am so excited to have all of these fabulous ladies hanging out with me this summer so that I can have a little more time to spend with our host daughter while she is here.  

Be sure to stop by and check out all of their projects!  And I will still be here updating you with pictures from our time spent with our host daughter!  AND I will be sharing our trip to Nashville for Jonathan’s (the voice) audition!  




This is an announcement I have been waiting to make for over a MONTH!  Young Living has just launched its BRAND NEW Premium Starter Kit, and you are going to LOVE it!  I got mine in the mail last week, and it is beautiful.  There are a couple of new oils that you will love, and lots of samples to share with others.  Plus you get the new dew drop diffuser!  It is by far the best deal if you are interested in the oils.

 Here is a fun one minute video about the kit:

If you would like more information on how to get your hands on one of these, you can read more HERE.  

Or if you ever want to chat on the phone about the oils, I can do that too.  ;)

Have a blessed weekend, Friends!  

And Happy Father’s Day to all of the wonderful Dads in the world!

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