Living Room Reveal

The living room is FINALLY done! It has taken MONTHS. We were waiting for couches to be upholstered and for Christmas to be over so I could take pictures. The day has finally come to share this beautiful space and I am proud of it. 

Do not be fooled. It NEVER looks like this. Normally there are toys all over the place and Landon's bouncer and play mat. Fortunately the kids played outside this morning and I was able to snap some pictures without little hands or feet in them.

When planning out our home we went with a farmhouse look. After decorating the living room it became more of a chic/glamorous farmhouse and I absolutely love it!

All links will be included at the bottom of the post. Here's what it looked like before.

And after.

couch, chair, pillows (Tybalt Mica fabric)// Weirs
wing back chair// Target
rug// RugsUSA
home picture // Small Wood Home
lamps// Target (similar)
ottoman// Wayfair
wooden box// Hobby Lobby
aqua wall decor// Hobby Lobby
wooden tray// c/o Wayfair
lantern//  c/o Wayfair
entertainment center// c/o Wayfair (similar)
glass table vase// c/o Wayfair
candlesticks and candles// c/o Wayfair
flowers and ratan vase// Hobby Lobby
topiaries// c/o Wayfair
decorative books// Hobby Lobby

Thank you to Wayfair and Small Wood Home for their collaboration on our living room.

Eyebrow Microblading 101

I’ve been interested in microblading my eyebrows for a while now and know a handful of people (including a fellow blogger friend- Amber Massey) have had it done – and I’ve loved seeing their results! Aside from my love for the overall look that microblading your eyebrows provides, I loved how permanent makeup can help save time in one’s morning routine. Especially for those who prefer to color in their eyebrows regularly or are having a hard time with their shape like me! I wasn't able to have it done while pregnant so I was so excited to finally get it done after having Landon.

The below photo is my eyebrows before microblading, and after the first treatment:

Before full face (filled in with make-up):

After first session:
After touch-up session:


Picking a technician:
My advice is to ask around! Your best bet is finding someone that a friend used that can give a real review on their services. Once you've found someone, ask them about their training. Do they have a license, where did they receive it. Amanda at Harper Blvd Spa did mine and she is amazing! She has even started holding classes to teach others her microblading technique!

How much does it cost?
The price can range, however don't try to find the cheapest person out there. You get what you pay for and you want someone who knows what they are doing! This is permeant make-up and you want it to look good! If you are in the DFW area, Amanda charges $600 BUT if you mention my name, she will give you 20% off coming out to $480.

How do I make an appointment?
If you’re looking to book with Amanda, she is currently taking appointments at her salon, Harper Blvd Spa. Click here to book or call her at 972-383-9772.

So what does it mean to microblade one’s eyebrows you ask?
Microblading is a semi-permanent tattooing technique that creates hairlike strokes to fill in sparse or thin eyebrows. It also helps create a shape for those who lack shape and want to fill out even more thick eyebrows (like mine). The technician will use a small tool to make small cuts and then apply a layer of pigment (which is really like dye) over the brows which will set into the strokes that were etched into your brows/skin.

What does semi-permanent mean? 
Semi-permanent means that the ink will fade within a 1-2 year time frame depending on your lifestyle and how well you care for your brows and face. It does not last forever and to keep the desired results for a longer period of time you will need to get them touched up yearly.

Is it painful?
In my experience, it was a bit painful, but only on the first pass. Amanda did apply a topical lidocaine to my eyebrow area before making any cuts, but it wasn't until after the first pass when she put on another layer of lidocaine did it numb it enough that it didn't hurt anymore. Pain tolerance varies from person to person. Once I was num though it wasn't too bad. It kind of felt like tugging and scratching. There is one part of the procedure called shading. That kind of hurt, but bearable. I've been through child birth and nothing compares to that pain ;)

What is the procedure like?
When you get to your appointment you’ll talk about what your desires are for your brows. I took along a few examples of what I liked so Amanda could see what I liked. In the end, your technician should be trained to know what sort of overall shape you should have and what fits your face. You can help dictate thickness and the fullness of the brow, but the shape is best left to your technician. A good technician will talk you through what they think. I will say the first time she recommended the shape and size and I said I thought it was too much. But in the end she was right. When I came in for my touch up I had her do what she wanted to do the first time and it looked amazing. The technician will then choose a pigment color and by matching to your complexion and current eyebrow hair color. Then they will have you lay down so they can map your eyebrows before starting to make the cuts!

What is eyebrow mapping?
Eyebrow mapping is the outlining of where your brows SHOULD be and help identify their overall shape. When people see the mapping, they get nervous because they think that the outline of the map around the eyebrows is how big the eyebrows will be – but it's not – your technician will only work within the space they have outlined during the mapping. I didn't get to grab a picture of the mapping during my session, but here's an example I found on google :)

What are passes?
A single pass is this process on BOTH eyebrows: Cuts on each eyebrow – application of a layer of pigment – wipe off pigment – apply lidocaine to each eyebrow – and repeat. I'm pretty sure Amanda did 2 passes and then the shading technique to fill in the sparse places.

What did you have to do to prepare for the procedure?
I actually came in with a full face and Amanda just cleaned the makeup off my eyebrows before starting.

What is it like immediately afterward?
My eyebrows were sore. If I scrunched my nose I could feel how sore my eyebrows really were. When I did the after care washing I had to be very gentle with them for a few days.

What can one expect afterward?
It’s true that there’s an “ugly” period following the procedure. They are very thick and very dark! This picture was the day after my touch-up session. Very dark!
Amanda provided an after care instruction sheet and also the emotions I'd feel as they healed. It was pretty spot on! It typically sets in around days 2-5. Everyone heals different and responds differently, but for me I didn't feel that days 2-5 were that bad. Some individuals might experience redness and slight swelling due to sensitivity. There is definitely scabbing. I didn't experience it that much after the first treatment, but I was very viligant with applying aquaphor for the first few days so there wouldn't be that much scabbing. During the scabbing part (days 2-5) you’ll feel like your brows are darker than normal and pretty dramatic. I found if I did the rest of my make up it didn't look as bad. I knew they would fade as they healed, which they definitely did! Follow the advice of your technician and you'll have some amazing results!

How long does it take?
The procedure itself takes about 2 hours (give or take) it depends on what you need to have done and how many questions you have for the technician prior to the process. After the initial procedure – you'll wait a month then you’ll go back in for a touch-up which is crucial to the final look.

In the end I am very happy with my results! Amanda is so much fun to hang out with as she does my sessions and we always have fun!

Before Picture (no make up) vs after first treatment):

 After first session:

 After second touch up session (and an eyelash fill):

Want to win a microblading session with Amanda? Make sure you head over to my Instagram to get entered!

Christmas Decorating

It's finally Christmas and I am so excited about this year because I feel like Raegan is finally old enough to enjoy the decorating part of the holidays and I was totally right! I brought out the boxes and let her go to town decorating the tree. I love that we are getting to make new traditions for our family as the kids get older and understand more.

And the first tradition that I wanted to continue was decorating the tree together. When I was little we helped my mom decorate the tree and when we were older we would reminisce over all the ornaments we had made over the years. I loved when Kyle and I got married and had our own home and our tree, my mom gave us a box of ornaments from her tree to put on ours. I can't wait to pass down ornaments to all my my kids some day.

This plate and cup from Wayfair can't wait to be filled for Santa! I explained to Raegan what they were for and she's ready to do it tonight. I tried to explain we have to wait another month ;)

Hudson's still a little young to understand and when I asked if he wanted to help he said no, but as soon as he saw sister having fun he decided to give it a chance.
 He ended up putting a few on the tree and also taking a few off.
 I love how all the ornaments ended up on the bottom of the tree. Just reminds me how little my babies still are.
Another tradition I'm excited about is our Advent Calendar. I bought this adorable bag set from Wayfair that goes from 1-24. In each bag I plan to write out a part of the Christmas story and have 2 pieces of candy for Raegan and Hudson. We will open a new bag every morning and learn more about how Jesus was born. Gosh I cannot wait!

EDITED: I found these adorable pages on Pinterest that have you read 1 verse a day about the Christmas story until Christmas Day! I plan to use the more simple one when they are younger and the longer verses when they are older.

The rest of the house is decked out with fun festive pillows and I can't wait to teach our children about the real reason for the season. Even though presets are so fun, I want my children to learn that Jesus was born to save us and gave His life for us. I can't wait to see their faith grow over the years through the traditions we have began with them.

Want to win $100 to spend at Wayfair to start making traditions with your own family? Go to the Wayfair upside down Christmas tree page, pick your favorite tree and comment here with the link! Also make sure you leave your email so I can contact you if you win! I will pick a winner on December 5. Good luck!

ALSO I will chose a SECOND winner to win their own Advent Calendar bags. So make sure you enter!

Mud Room Reveal

I am so excited to partner with Wayfair and reveal our mudroom make over! Whenever we renovated our house I knew I wanted an area to put the kids shoes and hang up their backpacks and diaper bag. I had them cut out a hole in the wall next to our closet under the stairs to allow me to put a bench. 

Now this area is small and honestly can be super messy and it's really just a place to throw your things when you walk in the door. Certain parts of our homes may serve a primarily utilitarian purpose, but that does not mean that they can't also be beautiful.
I found this bench on craigslist when we moved into our first house in 2011. It's originally from World Market and we got it for a steal! It was in storage when I had them cut the spot out for it. I guessed on measurements and I was so happy when we put the bench in and it fit perfectly! Even if it hadn't, I had another bench picked out from Wayfair that would fit ;)
Once we moved into this house I purchased baskets from Target to go under the bench to house shoes, toys, and bags. I love having the shoes downstairs. The kids always know where their shoes are and where to put them when we come inside.

They also know exactly where to hang their backpacks after school. I love this rustic coat rack from Wayfair. It's small enough to not overwhelm the space, but also has enough hooks for lots of bags.

 I also fell in love with our Elle Decor rug from Home Dynamix.   The material is almost like rubber so if it does get dirty and let's be honest, it's going to, it's easy to just wipe right off. It gives off a beautiful, vintage vibe, but still does it's job of keeping our mud room area nice and clean.
Throw some decorative pillows on the bench and you have a beautiful mud room that you won't mind looking at every time you come home.
Be on the look out for our living room reveal. I've been working on it and I cannot wait to share it with you! Our house is slowly coming together and I love thinking about all the years of memories we will make here.
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