Hey, sweet friend! Plop on down on our porch for a visit and help yourself to some lemonade.
Can I tell you something? And you pinky promise not to tell anyone else? My house is never this tidy in the summertime. Just so you don’t think we have it totally together around here or anything.
Normally, while my daughter Olivia is out of preschool for the summer, my husband Robert and I along with both sets of grandparents are soaking up the sun every chance we get- swimming and having road trips and running around making memories.
But since we’re opening up our home for the Simply Summer Tour with Country Living Magazine, Birch Lane, Nina Hendrick, and 29 incredibly talented bloggers today, I figured I’d hide the wet swimsuits and dirty flip flops for a minute.
I had a lot of fun playing around with some color this summer with blues and yellows that always make everything come to life in our very neutral home. Those two colors always say “summer” to me.
I gave our porch a little refresh with these navy print outdoor pillows and gray striped throw from Birch Lane (who generously gave me a gift card for this tour), so sitting out here with Robert and Olivia on stormy summer evenings to watch the rain fall has become one of my new favorite things to do.
Even though I have the blackest thumb on the planet, I couldn’t resist picking up these sunny flowers the other day. They make our porch smile.
Since we live in a “cookie cutter” subdivision with a strict HOA, I can’t make very many changes to the exterior of our house. But Robert and I made these DIY wooden shutters that at least give our front door some “oomph”.
Our foyer doesn’t change much day to day, but it pretty much always has a summer quality to it with these DIY botanical print frames I made (you can download a set for yourself by signing up for my design e-course too).
Pretty much everything in our foyer has been thrifted and madeover. I found these chemist bottles for just 25 cents the other day that are now the cutest vases.
Our foyer table was a Craigslist find too that was a simple flip just by using some paint and a few planks nailed on top. It’s made a great spot for tossing our keys when we walk through the door and storing items in the drawers that are easy to grab on our way out.
We turned our hallway into a makeshift mudroom where we can toss jackets and shoes too. (Can you tell we just toss things around here? If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. And do your best to corral the mess.)
I found this bench on Craigslist for $35 a year ago and it is my favorite! We installed DIY board and batten to brighten up our dark hallway and I made this Irish blessing sign a few months ago to greet friends and family as they walk in.
I picked up this lemon wreath a few weeks ago that has made this spot extra sunny and cheerful
And I made this botanical print pillow cover this spring that is still right at home in here.
Our kitchen has just seen a massive transformation in the past few weeks and we are very close to having it 100% finished! This space finally feels like it belongs with the rest of our house now since it used to be so dark and cave-like before.
During the hot, humid months (which let’s be honest is most of the year here in the Carolinas) I drink lemon water like it’s my job, so I keep a constant lemon stockpile. Since planting our backyard garden a few months ago, we have loved cooking with herbs and making mint mojitos this month too.
Our kitchen table is right between our kitchen, our back patio, and our living room, so it sees a lot of action in the summertime. We eat all of our meals here and sprawl out with craft projects and coloring and Play-Doh when it’s unbearably hot out.
And every now and then, we set it all pretty to have family and friends over for a cookout. My husband would grill out every day if he didn’t actually have to go in to work at the office.
Fun Fact: (Maybe you should ignore this one if you’re slightly OCD) Only two clocks on our wall actually tell the correct time. Usually because the only time I think about changing the batteries is when I’m taking pictures of them. Oops.
One of my favorite architectural DIYs we’ve done is our wood beam doorway that we installed last summer for $80. It opens right up into our living room and makes a massive statement in here. I still can’t believe how easy it was to do.
But the DIY that started it all in our house was really our oversized faux fireplace. It never really gets cold enough for a real fire around here anyway and definitely not in the summer.
That ceiling fan though… it gets a workout. Don’t ever tell a Southern girl she can’t have her ceiling fan. Wink wink.
Our living room is home to a lot of thrifty finds, like that card catalog coffee table that keeps all of our DVDs super organized for our summer movie nights.
And our mantel mirror that I found for $10 and gave a distressed makeover.
And our media cabinet we found on Craigslist and gave a Restoration Hardware inspired flip.
I actually have plans to change this space a bit in the near future for a little refresh, but it’s amazing what some fresh grocery store flowers can do for a room all by themselves.
In the past few months, our master bedroom has seen lots of changes too since it was hardly more than a white box not too long ago. And yeah… I went all flower-happy in here too with a few clippings from our hydrangea bushes. I really can’t help myself.
About once a week, Robert gets a hankering for bacon and fries up a batch, then brings me a little surprise plate of it in bed. (Then Olivia usually steals half of it.) Bacon is basically the social equivalent of flowers, am I right? It’s currency in our house.
I wouldn’t trade our lazy summer mornings together for anything. I love how the sunshine streams through the windows to wake us up every day.
On mild summer evenings, we’re known to invite over our nearby family for impromptu cookouts on our back patio that we gave a makeover this spring.
Growing up, my dad was a grill master and he’s passed on the love of the grill to Robert. Together, they could give Bobby Flay a run for the money. Being the barbeque judge is hard work, but somebody’s gotta do it. (Ha!)
Olivia’s favorite thing out here though is devouring s’mores and playing on her playground. She runs barefoot through the backyard every chance she gets.
Not much has really changed out here since the last time I shared it, except maybe I’ve killed another plant or two. Shhh… I’ll never tell.
Thank you so much for stopping by to visit our little wannabe suburban farmhouse!
I owe a huge thanks to Nina Hendrick, Country Living Magazine, and Birch Lane as well for hosting this beautiful tour! You can follow all of the tour happenings on Instagram with the hashtag #SimplySummerTour.
And you can catch up on all of the other summer tours in the lineup here: