Month: March 2015

5 Renovations That Offer the Biggest Return

March 30, 2015

A question I receive often is asking for ideas on how to improve their home’s value. Whether you are remodeling to bring your home up to date or plan on selling, here are a few interesting facts from an article I read and thought you might find useful:

1) A new front door. (Return on investment: 96.6%) Refresh your entryway and impress potential buyers with a new front door. If your current front door is in good condition, consider painting or staining to make it look as good as new.

blue front door

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2) A wooden deck addition. ( Return on on investment: 87.4%) Improve the indoor/outdoor versatility of your home by adding a wooden deck.

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3) An attic bedroom. (Return of investment: 84.3%) Bedrooms are a versatile addition to a home. They can serve as a bedroom, a guest room or a home office. An attic bedroom makes use of this often underutilized space and adds value to the home.

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I found so many photos of beautiful attic bedrooms! I did not know so many people creatively used the space- genius!

4) A new garage door. (Return of investment: 83.7%) If your garage doors are old or dated, replacing them will add value to your home. If they’re still in good shape, paint them to enhance the look of your home.

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5. A minor kitchen remodel. (Return on investment: 82.7%) The kitchen is one of the most popular renovations that homeowners tackle. A minor remodel can update the space and entice potential buyers.

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While you may not be able to do anything about your home’s location or age, there are things that you can do to improve its size and condition and add value!

Source U.S. News and World Report

Spring Tablescape

March 28, 2015

Yes, it is still cold and snowy here in the Northeast, on the 28th day of March. I was stuck inside all day again, so I decided to decorate for Spring inside my kitchen. Decorating the kitchen seems to always start with a vignette on the table: spring table7

I used everything I already had on hand, except for the tulips:

 

I love tulips! So Spring-like and happy. They come in so many beautiful colors. I could do a whole blog about gorgeous tulips!

I knew I wanted to use these small plates I picked up last Fall at an old Barn Sale.: spring table

It was a set of five. I would love to know the history behind them.

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Very simple and so fun to put together:

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Hooray! The warm weather is coming. Are you ready??

Mixing Silk Flowers With Greenery

March 25, 2015

cherry_thumb.jpg I called my florist yesterday to find out how much it would cost to order a few cherry blossom branches to make an arrangement. She told me that one branch, which comes 6 feet tall, will cost me around $20.00 for each branch. Crazy. Then she gave me a great idea: cherry4 To buy the silk cherry branches from Michael’s and mix in a few long lasting greenery branches to make it look even more authentic.     cherry3.jpg She sold me a few tree ferns and some other pretty greenery for only $2.00. Michael’s silk flowers were on sale for 40% off. I used five branches: cherry blossom You can use all kinds of flowers and be really creative! cherry2 Do you think you will give this a try?

Helpful Tip For Orchids

March 21, 2015

Did you know that when orchids stop blooming and enter a dormant state, many orchid owners make the mistake of thinking their orchid has died and throw the plant away? I admit that I am one that has been throwing them out for years thinking they were dead and done! orchid My plant smart sister–in-law taught me that unlike many common houseplants that remain green and healthy-looking year round, orchids are more like the perennial flowers and bulbs in your outdoor garden. Just like other flowering plants, orchids must rest and replenish their energy between bloom periods. Producing flowers consumes tremendous energy, depleting the resources the plant uses to produce healthy new growth. The large, showy flowers your orchid produces and maintains week after week when your orchid is in full bloom eventually drain the plant of energy. When this occurs, the flowers will fade and fall off the stem. So I took her advice and instead of throwing my plant out this time, I watered once a week as usual and let it go. And look what I found yesterday!: orchid bloom Can’t believe it. It has only been about 3 months and is already blooming again! So don’t be tossing your orchids out after blooming. It is not dead! Here is the proof they will bloom again: orchid2 So pretty and three other buds ready to open! I just love flowers, don’t you? Have a great weekend everyone!

Update For Spring Using Coral Accessories

March 19, 2015

Looking to freshen up your rooms this Spring? Still trending BIG this year is the color coral:

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Coral is a beautiful color to refresh and lighten up any room. A color combination I am in love with now is coral, navy blue and mineral blue:

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I also am loving coral and turquoise together:

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Unlike last Spring, coral colored accessories now are easy to find and at great prices. New towels for the bath:

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Pillows for the sofa and bed:

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coral pillow

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Or a throw for the living room or bedroom:

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Wouldn’t that blanket above look beautiful folded at the end of your bed?

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The picture above shows how well coral works with many other colors. Including browns:

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coral bed

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And grays:

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(Winter Day by Behr, Simply White by Benjamin Moore, Coral Gables by Benjamin Moore, Palladian Blue by Benjamin Moore).

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White & Coral!:

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And of course all shades of blue:

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Look how nice coral goes with green and blue:

coral blue and green

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Wouldn’t these chairs be fun and exciting in your kitchen or dining room:

coral chair

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Ballard Design even carries coral fabric at pretty good prices:

coral fabric

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Or how about a beautiful, new rug for your entry or living room:

coral rug

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What do you think of the color coral? Do you agree that it is a great color to help bring Spring indoors this year? We certainly are deserving of a happy, bright color to bring in the warmth!

Natural Beauty

March 17, 2015

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Last set of Costa Rica pictures I promise! I just wanted to share with you some of my photos of the scenery and natural beauty in the jungle. You will be glad I did they are so beautiful!

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Amazing, isn’t it? Here was a bamboo forest:

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It was enormous!

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pink

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The leaf cutter ants were the coolest things. Their whole life is spent carrying exact sized pieces of leaves back home to the nest:

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They were so amazing to watch.

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Local homes:

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This was a school that I would have loved to go inside and look around:

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green

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jungle

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mom and baby

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water

morning

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orange

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red flower

shore

 

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I wish I knew the names of all these beautiful flowers!

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The last night with a few of our new friends:

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I miss it. Thanks everyone for letting me share! I promise to get back to decorating tomorrow!