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April 2, 2014
Kitchen Tour + Waxed Soapstone Countertops

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It’s fun for me to look back at our previous houses and see how we lived and the style of our decor.
I’m going to start to document our current house by room as I get them mostly decorated and moved in.
The most finished room in our new house is the kitchen, so I’ll start there.
I’ll put a source list at the bottom of this post in case you have any questions. I like when other people share their sources.
I’ll also ask Michael to help me add a house tour link somewhere in the right side navigation. hint hint

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Last night I waxed our soapstone countertops for the first time.
I left them un-oiled or waxed for two months to see if we liked the natural light gray chalky look.
I loved the color of them un-waxed but they showed too many oil and water spots. It looked dirty even when it was clean.

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I decided to wax instead of use mineral oil after I read this blog post from Joan (For the Love of a House blog)
about her soapstone experience. Here’s the paragraph that sold me on wax:

“Did you know mineral oil is a liquid by-product of the distillation of petroleum to produce gasoline and other petroleum-based products from crude oil (per Wikipedia)??  It sounded so healthy and natural before you knew that, right?!  When I read that mineral oil is a “non-drying oil”, meaning that it does not evaporate, but instead it disappears from the surface of the stone by being picked up and transferred around the house I was a bit creeped out.”

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I took this photo after half of our kitchen island had been waxed. See the water spots and rings near the sink?

I only have to apply the wax twice and then once a year after that.
I decided to use the soapstone wax that Joan recommended. It’s Real Milk Paint Co.’s Soapstone Sealer and Wood Wax.
Soapstone sealer is made from all natural products and is not a petroleum product like mineral oil.
It is made from food grade Walnut Oil and T 1 Carnauba Wax Flakes.
There are no solvents added which means no VOCs or added fragrances.
I just rubbed it on with a cloth, let it sit for 15-30 minutes, then wiped it off.

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 We love our deep black granite single basin sink! It rarely looks dirty and splotchy like our stainless steel sink did in our rental house.
The dark gray color blends well with our soapstone. I’m also happy with our faucet selection.
It has one handle to control hot and cold water and a separate hand sprayer on the right of the faucet.
We also have a button in the soapstone for our garbage disposal.

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The middle drawer to the left of the sink holds our mixing bowls, measuring cups, salad spinner, and strainers.

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The top drawer to the left of the sink holds our silverware and Graham’s adorable gingham utensils.

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Our gas stove was a risky purchase but it has turned out to work great! We found it in the clearance section at Sears.
The stove had been returned unused. It made us nervous that we didn’t know if it had a problem but the price was too good to pass up.

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We designed our kitchen so it wouldn’t have any corner cabinets.
I have really short arms and hate to look for lost items in the back corners of cabinets.
We added drawers in most of our lower cabinets. The drawers are so much easier to use than cabinets with doors.
If I was to build our kitchen again, I would put drawers in all of our lower cabinet areas
(except under the sink where the cabinet maker wouldn’t allow it).

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The top drawer next the the stove holds more utensils.

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The middle drawer next to the stove holds our pots.

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The lower drawer next to stove holds our frying pans.

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I love our Juliska Jardin du Monde dinnerware in the whitewash finish. I have a weakness for dishes.

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Two Easter bunnies and a Juliska pitcher. I think this pitcher was my first Juliska purchase in 2010.

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I’m happy we added this X pattern to the ends of the island. Graham likes to drive his matchbox cars down the “ramps”.

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This flip down faux drawer in front of the sink hides our sponge and drain stopper.

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Our microwave is hidden behind these cabinet doors. It’s nice having it out of view.
We also have a toaster in the cabinet above the microwave. You can see its electrical cord above the microwave.

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We selected our refrigerator because it was lacking a huge ice maker in the refrigerator area.
We don’t use much ice and would rather have the space for food storage.

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We designed the back side of our kitchen to act as a long buffet area for serving during parties.
I love to see lamps in kitchens so I’m glad we have an area for two on the buffet. Lamps give the room a more casual living vibe.
I’m happy we opted to forgo the upper cabinets over the buffet.

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More Juliska. The small white Juliska bowl holds apple sauce caps that Graham uses to sort his colors.
The small wooden cup holds toothpicks.
I found this huge boxwood topiary at the grand opening of HomeGoods in Bentonville.

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Another Juliska canister and my vine Easter ducks.

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This might be my favorite junk drawer in the buffet side of the kitchen. It holds our batteries in a divided bamboo drawer organizer.

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This drawer in the buffet area holds our plastic dishes that we use when eating outside on the deck.
They’re from Liberty of London for Target several years ago.

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This lower drawer in the buffet area holds our bakers.

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One of my favorite things about our kitchen is the view overlooking the treetops in our backyard.

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Our white dogwood trees are beginning to bloom this week.

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I enjoy the down-light these lanterns provide over our kitchen island in the evenings.
I often use them late at night when I’m up working on Timeless Paper and don’t want all of the bright recessed lights turned on.

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Here’s a bird’s eye view of our soapstone countertops after I waxed them for the first time.

Sources:

wall paint: ash by restoration hardware (subtle velvet finish)
baseboard paint: ash by restoration hardware (low gloss finish)
cabinet paint: westhighland white by sherwin williams (eggshell)
interior door paint: wrought iron by benjamin moore
cabinet knobs & pulls: dakota square collection from restoration hardware (soft iron finish)
island lights: stockholm pendants from restoration hardware (weathered zinc finish) (similar)
backsplash: white subway tile with a band of carrara marble
our dinnerware: juliska jardins du monde (whitewash)
countertops: soapstone
soapstone wax: real milk paint soapstone sealer
wood floors: white oak greystone
sink: black granite
sink faucet: delta victorian
large boxwood topiary: homegoods
wooden lamps: homegoods
two tiered fruit basket: homegoods (with a juliska oval bowl)
refrigerator: LG
stove: kenmore elite
dishwasher: bosch
bar stools with linen seat cushions: restoration hardware (counter height)
glass canisters for sugar, flour, & brown sugar: crate&barrel (similar)
pots and pans: anolon
wooden bunnies: homegoods
round wooden cutting board: john boos
utensils in crocks by the stove: anolon
white crocks by the stove: le creuset
clock by the stove: pottery barn
knife block: anolon
white square salt & pepper shakers: crate&barrel outlet
thermostat: nest
flatware: emerge by crate&barrel
graham’s gingham utensils: pbkids
white ceramic casserole bakers: crate&barrel (similar)
floral plastic dishes: liberty of london for target
bamboo drawer organizers: homegoods
green and white strainers: homegoods (similar)
measuring cups: oxo
white mixing bowls: oxo
salad spinner: oxo
most of our utensils in drawers: anolon
white butter dish: crate&barrel outlet

emily

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March 31, 2014
Our Weekend

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Saturday we planted flowers around our yard.
We created a focal point in our walkway with this cream planter filled with Creeping Jenny and Ostrich Ferns.
The creeping jenny will eventually spill over the edges of the pot and the ferns will grow up to 8 feet tall.
I plan to add a few white impatiens around the ferns later this spring.

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Graham has started to show affection for his dogs and loves to give them hugs and kisses.

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Sunday we took a day trip over to Eureka Springs for lunch at Nibbles Eatery. It was nice to get away for a day.

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Sitting in the basin park in Eureka Springs.

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March 27, 2014
Our Easter Decor

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It’s beginning to look like Easter around house. Last Easter our decor was packed in moving boxes so it’s been since Easter 2012 that I’ve seen all of our eggs and bunnies. It feels so nice to be home. Our buffet area in the kitchen is decorated with egg trees from Target, yellow bunnies from the Target $1 spot, and woven vine ducks with sweet gingham ribbons from PBKids. I’m a sucker for gingham.

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There is a cute white bunny and green moss balls sitting on our living room end table.

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 Two seashell eggs hide our apple tv cords on the tv console.

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This huge leaf basket is filled with over-sized green eggs on our coffee table. The photo really doesn’t show its scale.

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 There is a bronze bunny hanging out by the powder room sink.

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 And two wooden bunnies sit near the refrigerator in the kitchen.

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These white woven eggs were an addition to my Easter decor this year. I found them at HomeGoods. Can you tell I like natural texture?

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And in Graham news…
He has been praying over his meals. It’s so cute. He says “dank doo Jeshus” (thank you, Jesus) and “aaahhmeh” (amen).

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He’s getting better at using a spoon.

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We made a difficult decision to take Graham out of Mother’s Day Out last week due to his sickness. He’s been sick almost every week since we started MDO and we just can’t take it anymore. I mean major sicknesses. I hate for him to go any longer being so sick. We know he really misses his teachers and friends and we know he was learning so much. We’ll probably send him back a few days a week when he’s older and out of the drooling stage. Hopefully older kids won’t spread so many germs. So now we get two extra days together. As you can see from his face, we’ve been painting and he’s been using my desk as a tunnel.

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He loves to sit in my office and sing along to Pandora kid stations. He’s getting really good at his ABC’s.
This week we’ve already been 4 days straight without a runny nose. That’s a record for this year.
We’re ready for spring! And Easter!

emily

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March 21, 2014
Spring Sale!

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Butterfly Escort Cards

Happy Spring Sale! I’ve just marked all of our escort cards in our Timeless Paper Etsy shop down from $1.50 to $1.00 each.

Etsy shop section: escort cards

Butterfly Collection on Etsy

emily

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Afternoons with Graham

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Please excuse my blog absence this week. The three of us have been in bed with a stomach virus. Not much else to report. We’re finally feeling better so Graham and I have been spending the afternoons playing on the back porch with our dogs, Finn and Willow. Here’s a little glimpse of our backyard activities:

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        lounging

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sippy cup day dreaming

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gnawing on sticks

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playing Dinosaur Train (Graham calls it “choo choo”)

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practicing his baseball throwing skills

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In gardening news, we planted Sky Pencil Hollies in our two zinc planters by the front door. They will grow to about 6-8 feet tall.
I plan to fill in around them with seasonal color this spring when the threat of frost is past.

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Willow has a new white fluffy friend named Frisco. (Our charming neighbor dog.)

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Telling secrets.

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  Graham loves using his watercolor paints, markers, and crayons to create masterpieces at the dining table.

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I may be most thankful for the playroom in our new house.
It’s nice to have a majority of the toys in one place (and out of the living room).
Graham keeps his toys organized. He likes things to be a certain way.
I have no idea where he inherited that gene. ha!

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emily

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