Saturday, July 30, 2011

choosing paint

As for the colors, I debated and debated for weeks. Aqua walls and neutral decor? Gray walls and colorful decor?

Gray? Aqua? Gray...aqua??

"Sea Salt" gave us both.

When I settled on "Sea Salt," I knew it had blue/green undertones but looking at the paint chip, and the samples I painted on the walls, we really thought it would be gray.

(the one to the right of the stove)

Boy, were we surprised when it started going up on the walls. My husband and I looked at each other all day, saying, "It's blue."

The family room wall, just to give you an idea of the color. Love it.

Paint Matters

We moved.

Our new place is AMAZING. I feel like I'm living in someone else's beach house for the weekend (and enjoying every minute of it) but Monday, I'm gonna have to go back home. It's a little surreal.

In a new place, you get a lesson on accentuating the positive. This place has 10 ft. ceilings, a reeeaaalllly wide front hallway, fabulous 18" tile floors, lovely kitchen counters (granite and Caesar stone!) and big, light-filled rooms. I told you--lots of positives! And the previous owners painted it...Dog Puke Yellow. It was a dirty, mustard-y, lifeless, brownish yellow. No redeeming qualities and didn't do this beautiful house any favors.

So! My first order of business: PAINT.

Thankfully, my dad is a long-time professional painter and my husband has a lot of practice painting interiors. I did not hesitate to put them to work. I just could not abide the yellow. And our time-frame allowed us to paint for two days before the actual moving process started. Painting an empty house is the way to go.

And now for some before and afters!

I will be tweaking this house for...well, probably for as long as we live here! So this is just the 1st of MANY "afters!"

{paint color details appear at the end of this post}

The dining area, BEFORE. I knew I wanted to give this space a little "wow" because it gets nice light and frames the backyard view. Our rental had no back yard so you know I'm appreciating this one!

AFTER. My only accent wall, painted in "Aqueduct," with our dining room table and chairs. I envision bamboo shades for these windows. Someday I may paint the table and chairs black.

A different look. These were the cookies waiting for Andrew when he arrived home from school after his first day of kindergarten!

My baby started school! Sniff, sniff. As cute as he is, all I'm looking at are the wall colors behind him!

Kitchen BEFORE. To me, the paint color just makes the cabinets and counters disappear.

(almost) AFTER kitchen. Our new color makes the taaaallll cabinets stand out and compliments the Caesar stone counters. It wasn't trimmed out yet, nor was the ceiling done. I'll add that "after" ASAP!

Pantry was just dingy! BEFORE...

...and AFTER. Just gave it a cleaning and two coats of "Swiss Coffee" white. The paint was trimmed out around the outside at this point, too, which really helps.

Looking from front door, BEFORE. This was from the MLS listing.

...AFTER. I envisioned our turquoise sideboard here, I think it will stay. Just needs some artwork above and accessorizing.

The hall looking toward the front door, BEFORE.

The hall, AFTER.

I adore the bright, light, airy feel! Plus it's still very neutral, so we can add more fun colors to the mix. I'm very excited about personalizing our space! Stay tuned!

INTERESTED IN THE PAINT COLORS? "Sea Salt" walls (eggshell), "Crystal Clear" ceiling (flat) and "Swiss Coffee" trim (satin). All Sherwin Williams.

The three paint colors together.

And in natural light.

More to come!!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Moving On

My dear friend Chrissy keeps asking me, "Can you believe it!?? Can you believe what God did??? Can you believe you're finally moving?!!?"

The short answer? NO.

My dad is helping us paint the interior of our new house and he put a sign advertising his business in our front yard then he and my mom secretly attached two balloons to it. One balloon says "Welcome Home!" and the other one has the verse "Nothing is Impossible With God."

That pretty much sums it up.

Obstacle after obstacle has been overcome to bring us into our new Pleasant Place. We will be moving in this weekend (not to mention preparing for Andrew to start kindergarten on Monday!) so I'll save the whole story for next week.

Moving in July in Phoenix during a heatwave. God sure has a sense of humor. Maybe He likes to see us sweat.

*photo from

Monday, July 18, 2011

Beat the Heatwave Summer Strawberry Facial

Got some strawberries "on their way out?"

Put them to good use! Overly-ripe, mushy (but not rotten) strawberries work best.

This is one of my favorite facials--it leaves your skin tingly and refreshed. Fabulous after a long day in the heat! You could even make it in the morning then store it in the fridge to apply later in the day. Aaaahhhh. Perfect to pamper yourself or for a girls' night in.

You will need 4 very ripe strawberries and 2 drops of peppermint essential oil.

The fruit enzymes will slough way dead skin while the essential oil will refresh and perk up your complexion. The peppermint oil is so invigorating!

Instructions: mash the strawberries and press through a mesh strainer or squeeze through cheesecloth or (clean) panty hose. Catch the juice in a small bowl. You could even use the leftover pulp in a smoothie while you're at it! Then add the essential oil to the juice and blend. Apply to face and neck with a saturated cotton square and massage into skin for about 1 minute (avoiding the eyes!). Rinse with cool water. Enjoy!

Friday, July 8, 2011

I Heart Turquoise

I've been wearing turquoise for most of my life. Clothes, shoes, jewelry, I've always loved it. I think it's because it's beachy (I grew up in Florida), clean and vibrant. It makes me feel relaxed and energized at the same time. It's fun that it can go with green, orange, red, pink and a variety of other colors.

At the house we lived in for seven years, however, my color scheme was taupe, paprika and sage green (as you can see here).

No turquoise. My earth tones needed some sky!

Then my husband was working for a Chinese imports store and brought THIS turquoise sideboard home. HELLO!!

(see my old "paprika" wall??)

"But that doesn't go with anything!" I despaired. I thought he was nuts-o but it quickly grew on me. Now it's one of my favorite pieces of furniture EVER. Eventually I started adding more turquoise to our decor.

Like this Southern Living At HOME (now Willow House, which I am currently a rep for) painting that I got on clearance. I adore the colors.

Here they are together in our former dining area.

I like the turquoise piece better in the rental with the "fresh guacamole" paint! That's more of the direction we'll be going in our next place. I love the turquoise pitcher, too, of course.

I also spray painted my patio set turquoise. It really jazzed it up!

AND did a DIY artwork trio in shades of turquoise to brighten up our living space.

You can find the artwork tutorial HERE.

I FINALLY got my true turquoise fix when I went CRAZY and painted my former craft room Glidden's "True Turquoise."

With Glidden's "Orange Slice?" Divine! And inspiring for a creative space!

I am DEFINITELY looking forward to showcasing my love of turquoise as we decorate our next house--which we will be closing on two weeks from today! Wahoo!!

Looking for a MAJOR turquoise fix and oodles of gorgeous design inspiration?? Head on over to House of Turquoise. Talk about eye candy!! I've spent hours on this site. You'll be addicted, too!

QUESTION: What color do you looooove?? How does it make you feel?

Sunday, July 3, 2011

I'm a Fertility Nut + giveaway

Celebrating the FREEDOM to be myself and pursue my passion. Published today on my God Knits blog.

I'm getting used to the Fertility Nut title. It's a little strange, being "known" for something. I've recently come to a point where there's no turning back. And now, I don't want to. I want to embrace it.

Friends often introduce me by saying, "This is my friend, Tabitha. She's a fertility nut." Women typically respond in one of two ways: they stare blankly, nod their heads politely and try to change the subject...OR, they blush a little, edge over to within whispering distance and begin a question with, "OK, I just have to ask you..."

Hardly a week goes by that I don't receive an e-mail, Facebook message or text that starts with, "Sorry this is TMI, but..."

I get so excited when messages start out that way. Really.

I can be innocently eating cake at a family birthday party, pushing my son on a swing at the park or rolling the dice at Bunco and I find myself learning details about a woman's sex life, menstrual cycle or cervical fluid, answering questions about birth control, breastfeeding or ovulation and hearing stories about someone who is pregnant, had a miscarriage or just had a baby.

And I enjoy hearing stories and fielding questions.

"Should we be having sex every day I'm fertile or every-other-day?"

"How long did you nurse your boys?"

"What was your first postpartum period like?"

"What're you supposed to do about a clogged milk duct?"

"How far along were you when you miscarried?"

"How long do sperm survive?"

"Did you ever use an ovulation predictor kit?"

"How long does it take to get back to normal after I stop taking the Pill?"

You get the idea. There is no such thing as TMI anymore. I'm like a doctor: I've heard it all.


Every new question or situation is a challenge and gets my heart pounding. It's a thrill to teach women about their bodies, read up on the latest fertility research, give out "how to get pregnant" tips, share my miscarriage or pregnancy stories, decode fertility charts and advise people on breastfeeding issues.

It's just as much fun as crafting (which is what I USE to be known for)...except it's better, because it really truly helps people and has the potential to change lives forever.

When someone approaches me with, "We're going to start trying to get pregnant and I wanted to ask you..." I actually get chills.

I told ya, it's nutty.

This IS my passion and I want to grow into the Fertility Nut title. It's a bit surreal, being branded and being the "go-to" ANYthing. It's a lot of pressure! And it's personal--for them AND for me.

As a niche, or a "thing" in life, it's kind of...weird. Fertility involves bodily functions, intimacy between couples, birth, hormones and all sorts of private information. There are still people who think these matters should be kept hush-hush.

But I have walked side by side with several women courageously trying to get pregnant after a miscarriage. I have had the priviledge of being asked to pray for a baby even before it was conceived. I have witnessed births. I have heard the stories of abortion, sexual abuse and struggles with PCOS and the way God has used those situations to bring about redemption.

This stuff matters. It needs to be talked about and addressed. Women need the support, encouragement and camaraderie that comes from sharing our stories and our experiences.

Women need ME and what I have to offer. God has allowed me to walk this journey and it is time for me to honor that by taking God Knits to the next level. That is all at once humbling, thrilling and terrifying.

This is important. This is who I am. This is part of the Pleasant Place God has placed me in (Psalm 16:6).

I'm Tabitha and I'm a Fertility Nut.

You better get use to it.


{Read my Becoming a Fertility Nut story HERE}.

If you want to maximize your fertility or need one-on-one fertility coaching, e-mail me at tabandrew(at) for more information.

GIVEAWAY!!!! I will give away one copy of my favorite fertility-related book, "Taking Charge of Your Fertility" by Toni Weschler {on Amazon}.

TO ENTER, simply leave a comment to this post answering the question "Which area of fertility interests you most: pregnancy, the Fertility Awareness Method, birth control, breastfeeding, miscarriage, nutrition...{or one I didn't name}?"