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awfully big adventure Posts

currently: september 2016

austin sunset
pretty early fall sunsets

Making: Does baking count as making? Cause I made these pistachio chocolate chip cookies for a tailgate and they are so friggin good. They are good enough that it is now my go-to chocolate chip cookie recipe, whether or not I include pistachios. This breaks a 29-year old record of using the recipe on the back of the Nestle chocolate chip bag, so it feels like a pretty big deal.
Cooking: Definitely made this taco soup when it was 95 degrees outside. Still delicious. And I made these chicken thighs with a shallot and red wine sauce on Monday night for the first time. Not mad about fall recipes one bit.
Drinking: Speaking of red wine.
Reading: Started and finished The Haunting of Hill House in about 48 hours. My mom and I read it at the same time, and we both loved it and agreed we’d definitely like to read more of Shirley Jackson. We’re only ~66 years behind on this.
Wanting: All the. Fall things. (Blink 182 is back, btw?) I caved and bought five tiny pumpkins and a pumpkin candle this week. Still holding out on wearing boots and sweaters.
Enjoying: Cool morning walks with Finn thanks to the cold front this week.
Listening: To the Almost Famous soundtrack and this song.
Needing: Two tickets to the TX/OU football game next weekend. Universe, hear my plea!!
SmellingThis is the pumpkin candle I bought, from my favorite local candle-makers. I also loveee this one, and this one is hilarious and actually smells delicious.
Wearing: This post is making me realizing I haven’t been shopping all month, which is normal for me this time of year when I’m exasperated by hot weather. I refuse to by anything for the upcoming season until I can actually wear it. Which is a long way of saying that I’m still wearing the leggings I mentioned last month.
Loving: Is love too strong of a word to use for Amazon Prime? I just feel like I keep discovering more benefits. We recently used Prime Now to deliver dinner from an Indian restaurant (mild tikka masala for me because I am a wimp) and it was soooo good.
Watching: I settled in to watch season 4 of Luther, which is typically four episodes. (Why are all the best BBC shows so short?) Yall should have seen my face when I realized the end of episode two was the end of the WHOLE SEASON. Two episodes. Rude. In lighter news, I watched This Is Us really primarily because Jess from Gilmore Girls is in it and was very pleasantly surprised by the whole thing. I totally didn’t see the twist at the end coming. Looking forward to more episodes. Also, I’m watching The Office as I write this and just got to the part where Michael declares bankruptcy by screaming “I DECLARE BANKRUPTCYYYY!!” lolz every time.
Bookmarking: I have to share that my bookmarking tool, Readability, is shutting down and I feel very sad about it. I guess I’ll just have to use regular old bookmarking from now on. Anyway: this article on crappy dinner parties makes so much sense. And please consider signing this petition to reverse the breed specific legislation that Montreal has enacted on pit bulls, which will result in euthanizing healthy, adoptable dogs. More info on my Instagram post here.
Feeling: Energized by good weather, which I’ll need because our month is pretty packed!

june's all day austin
dinner with girlfriends at June’s
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life’s a beach: lincoln’s nursery reveal

Last week, I shared the befores and a bit of the design process for Lincoln’s beachy nursery. This week, I’m so excited to show you the finished space! What makes this reveal even sweeter is that the nursery’s occupant, Lincoln, was born five weeks ago and I got to snap some pictures of him when he was just ten days old with his mama in the room.

He’s so tiny I could just DIE.

Lincoln's beachy nursery reveal

Ahhh. The perfect room to cuddle sweet little #babelincoln, change his impossibly tiny diapers, and store the insane amount of stuff that one little human needs. The rug was such a great find by Caroline. Things that were perfect about it: the price, the colors, the texture, the size. Things that weren’t perfect about it: nothing.

Lincoln's beachy nursery reveal

I know. I know. It’s a lot of cute things to take in at once. Take your time with it. The mobile. The octopus pillow. The side table. The pictures of baby Caroline and baby Ethan on the circular shelf. The curtains! So glad we went with the white curtains! As I mentioned, the room doesn’t get a ton of natural light, so these really brighten and soften the space.

Lincoln's beachy nursery reveal

Here’s another one just in case you didn’t fully absorb the cuteness up above. I mean. Could that mobile be any cuter? Also: wuddup super cute octopus pillow. You are also very cute. Times I used the word cute in this paragraph: five. Totally warranted.

Lincoln's beachy nursery reveal

Caroline made the wall hanging and I have to commend her- it looks AWESOME. The thick, rope-y cotton piping totally reads “beachy” to me without being too literal, and the copper accents coordinate with the copper side table. Plus, it’s just…cool. I want one for my room. Oh! bonus: if something insane happens and Austin, Texas gets an earthquake, it won’t hurt ze baby if it falls off the wall. We did want to be conscious of what we hung above the crib, which is what inspired something woven in the first place. Win/win!

Lincoln's beachy nursery reveal

Oh nothing, just a sweet, tiny gallery wall we squeezed into the glider corner. The pops of orange and yellow are great compliments to the wall color and other blue accents throughout the room. The petite glider is just the right size for the room, and it’s accented with a comfy throw for the parents during late night glider parties.

Lincoln's beachy nursery reveal

This side table was the perfect scale for the petite glider in this petite room. Plus, it’s copper, the shape is really cool, and it’s supes affordable from Target. (You may remember I used the same table on my patio.)

Lincoln's beachy nursery reveal

Love this precious handmade art that was given to Caroline and Ethan for their wedding and then found the perfect new home in the nursery. Topped with a sand dollar Caroline found at her grandmother’s beach house. ::dies:: Plus: dat curtain fringe detail.

Lincoln's beachy nursery reveal

The Pleasure Pier photo looks so great over their Ikea dresser-turned-changing table. This dresser used to be red! Ethan repainted it and spray painted the knobs in a brass finish and now it’s so perfect in this room. A sweet spot for Lincoln to pee on Mom and Dad. 🙂

Lincoln's beachy nursery reveal

We didn’t have room for a bookshelf, but were able to integrate some book storage with these picture ledges from Ikea. It doubles as a way to bring some color and fun to an otherwise unusable corner.

Lincoln's beachy nursery reveal

Oh ya know, just a mother casually holding her ten day old infant in his super cute, nautical but *naut* too literal nursery and looking gorgeous while doing so despite sleeping what most would call the minimum amount necessary to function. I am so in awe of my friends and so proud of them!!

lincoln's nursery reveal 19

GUYS. Guys. guys. GUYS!! LOOK AT HIM! Look at his little mouth/chin situation. Just look at it. Keep looking at it. Are your eyes leaking yet? Cool, me neither. Truly, though. He’s the best. If it’s not apparent yet, getting to work on making his room even half as cute as he is was so so fun and rewarding. If you have questions on sources, many of them were covered in this post, or feel free to leave a question in the comments! Or, it’d be helpful if you’d leave some synonyms for “cute” since I get the idea that I may need to have some different options available if I’m going to keep hanging out with cute, cute, cute Lincoln.


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life’s a beach: lincoln’s nursery, part 1

I’ve mentioned twice now that I recently got to help my good friends, Caroline and Ethan, with their nursery design for their first baby – Lincoln! It was so sweet and amazing of them to let me help, because when Caroline told me she was pregnant I’m pretty sure I 1) screamed, 2) cried happy tears, 3) asked 17,598 questions, and 4) started thinking about the nursery. This week, I’m sharing some befores and the design process, and next week I’ll share the reveal. I feel bad dragging it out, but this post was HUGE when I tried to roll it all into one. Onward to the befores!

nautical nursery before

nautical nursery before 3

nautical nursery before 2

So, there were some definite perks like the huge closet for all dat baby schtuff, the paint color was really nice in person, and the nice sized window. One consideration was the room’s size – it’s petite, but not at all unmanageable, especially for a nursery. And it was a bit dim as the window is a nice size but due to the roofline doesn’t let in a ton of natural light. But enough of that. Let’s move on to the fun part: the VIBE.

Caroline grew up going to the beach in Galveston, and she and Ethan were married there (in a crazy awesome wedding, might I add.) So of course they love the beach and soft, beachy tones. We decided to try a “beachy and boyish, but not beating you over the head with either” kind of direction. We were thinking soft neutral blues, greys, and creams with some pops of happy color and some natural wood finishes.

We also put some wants/needs together. A rug to help ground the space and cover up the carpet which wasn’t Caroline’s favorite went in the needs column, as did some curtains to soften the space and help block some light when the tiniest Lincoln in all the lands is napping. A side table for the glider and secondary lighting was also needed. The rest- art, pillows, blankets, tchotchkes, etc – went in the wants column.

I sent Caro three mood boards and included the three pieces of furniture she had already purchased (crib, dresser, and glider) to help visualize how the whole room would come together.


Baby Cope Nursery 2

In Option 1 I went for a reeeally pulled back, super calming/neutral space. There is hardly any color, and the color that is present is a pretty and calming robin’s egg blue. The dark rag rug with variation in color and texture was gorgeous and functional as it’d easily hide messes that I’ve heard children can make from time to time. The side table’s interesting shape and copper finish make a statement without being too overwhelming. The curtains are breezy and light to help brighten the dim space, and they have the cutest tiny fringe detailing down the side. The art and accessories are all metallic/natural so they coordinate and don’t compete.


Baby Cope Nursery 4

Option 2 went the opposite direction with ALL OF THE COLOR! A minty rug and accents of bright yellow, orange, and navy are all colors pulled from the photo, which is a great shot of the Pleasure Pier in Galveston. This option included dark/light blocking curtains as I know that’s a concern for lots of parents when they are getting their tiny people to sleep.


Baby Cope Nursery 1

Option 3 was kind of a meet in the middle between the super neutral option 1 and the colorful option 2. The rug is primarily neutral with a pop of nice, saturated blue. The accent colors are more subdued, but still originate in the large photo of the Pleasure Pier for the wall. This option includes the breezy curtains from option 1. The side table is a similar shape to the copper option, but in a cool robin’s egg blue and a shiny ceramic finish.

Caroline loved the Pleasure Pier photo, the breezy curtains, the copper side table, the robin’s egg blue lamp, and the circular shelf for tiny baby shoes and other tiny adorable things. She liked the idea of a rag rug with some navy in it, and ended up finding the perfect one on her own. Once we had those things nailed down, I created a final mood board and added some other elements that had been purchased, like the sweet whale mobile and the cool copper wall hanging DIY that we found on A Beautiful Mess.


Baby Cope Nursery Revised

I loveee how it all came together! The rag rug Caroline found is perfect – the color is great, and the rope-y texture fits that “naturally nautical” thing we were trying to accomplish. Basically, it’s beachy without being like “I LIVE IN A PINEAPPLE UNDER THE SEA!” The little nods like the octopus pillow, mobile, and Pleasure Pier photograph help Lincoln know that he will someday have many beach-side adventures. You’re probably like “That’s ridiculous, he’s a baby, he can’t possibly pick up on those things,” and to that I say that I’ve met him and he’s incredibly intelligent. He communicated with me through a series of squints and grunts that he totally gets the beachy thing.


Baby Cope Nursery Revised (1)

  1. Galveston Pleasure Pier photo (so affordable!!)
  2. Brass circle shelf
  3. Hello Sunshine print
  4. Whale mobile
  5. Fringe curtains
  6. Glider
  7. Column lamp
  8. Side table (on clearance!)
  9. Dresser/changing table (discontinued)
  10. Striped vase (sold out)
  11. Dotted vase (sold out)
  12. Rattan basket (sold out, similar)
  13. Octopus pillow (on sale!)
  14. Striped crib sheet
  15. Crib
  16. Rag rug
  17. Woven wall hanging

I can’t say enough how fun it was to get to work on this, and how rewarding it’s been to see the room come to life now that it is inhabited by teeny, tiny, sweet Lincoln! Last week I swung by to take some reveal photos of the nursery, Lincoln, and Caroline, and I cannot WAIT to share them. The reveal is coming next week, but there’s a sneak peek below cause I just can’t help myself.

lincoln's nursery reveal 7