Saturday, 24 August 2013

Coming Soon :: Curbside Makeovers

These babies are currently getting a makeover in the garage as we speak....

The sweet little hall table on the left (yes, for the entrance room of a house that we still don't have...) was just sitting on her lonesome on the side of the road. The file trays are technically not curbside but from the church fete, if I hadn't bought them they would have gone to the curb.


Friday, 23 August 2013

F I V E on Friday

Hey! Happy Friday! For us this means daddy comes home early (6pm as opposed to after 7pm) and we do baked fish and sweet potato fries for dinner. Simple things you know!

It also means a link up with Darci from The Good Life blog and filling you in on my Five on Friday.
So here goes!

::ONE:: Be Brave print from Charmandgumption on Etsy

I am loving this for Little Man's room. Out of everything I want him to grow up brave. Brave to face the challenges that are laid ahead for him. Brave to face listen to his heart and his message to make the right decisions for him. Brave to cope with sadness, to relish happiness and to love deeply. Be brave my Little Man.

::TWO:: Painting...

I am getting my groove on with painting some rescued pieces of furniture and I am really loving it! Stealing that time away to crank some music (pandora normall on the Train station! Love that band!) and prep, prime and paint. Yep loving it!

::THREE:: $6 tank tops from Big W!

Big W is a discount department store here in Australia and they have an in-house brand called Emerson. I am really loving their cheap as, $6 tank tops! They're 100% cotton, easy fit, have a false pocket complete with small button and are a really good length. I can't find them online at the moment but I will do some outfit shots later. These will EASILY become my summer staple this year, I can tell. I picked up white, black, grey, white with thin black stripe, navy, navy with white polkadot (I got two I like them so much) and yellow! I know it sounds like quite a few but I have had tanks in the past that I regret not taking more of... I am thinking of grabbing a few of the white ones and doing some embellishment and diy dye jobs on. We shall see!


We found a gorgeous house this past week that I just LOVE (and Little Man loves it too!). I took a walk through with my parents during the week and will take Hubby through tomorrow. They have called a 'dutch auction' for next thursday. This essentially means that you have to have your one and final offer on the table of the Real Estate agent by 5pm that day. Meaning the winning owner will know at 5.10pm if they've got the house. I am trying extremely hard not to fall in love and get emotionally involved in the house but it is hard. We have been hit so many times in this house hunt with pure disappointment. Please cross your fingers and keep us in your thoughts and prayers that this is the home for us and our nest to grow our family.


Style by Emily Henderson - loving this blog and have been stalking it all week! Especially the work she did with Country Living Magazine (US) for the House of the Year particularly this drool-worthy living room! LOVE!

That's my Five on Friday. 

Head over to The Good Life Blog for more and the link party! 

What are your Five on Friday?


Little Man :: 17 Months

Oh my goodness! Time is just flying by me. I cannot believe that my Little Man is 17 months old! Almost one and a half. I just love being his mama and I think I appreciate our time together so much more now that I am at work. Our Wednesday, Thursday and Friday are loads of fun, action packed and crazy busy, but I also make a conscious effort to have down time, play at the park and just hang out with my little dude.

He is making changes everyday and learning new words all the time. He has just started stringing three words together and can say 'More please mummy' and 'help me please' which is so good.

Words:: mummy, daddy, baby, home, car, Dec, Steph, Buddah, Gaz, Nan, Pop, Granma, Granpa, Linda, Izzy, Bob, please, ta, ball, truck, digger, pram, trolley, truck.... I could go on but there are just so many now! He understands pretty much everything he is asked too, but doesn't always go along with what we are asking (like all toddlers). We have certainly seen some "acts of difiance" but no real tantrums (yet!).

Food :: everyting! Espeically what Mummy is eating (or other people, even randoms in the street....)

Loves :: diggers, trucks, cranes, kicking the ball around the park/garden, climbing on EVERYTHING! Walking independently and not wanting to hold hands.

So Little Man, you are growing so super fast and developing more everyday. You have a very happy, cheeky and independent personality and we love you for every part of it. Your cuddles are super sweet and sometimes you just want to have mummy and daddy and you cling on like a little bear. I keep telling people how much I am loving this stage, but honestly I have loved every stage. You are the apple of our eyes, and you are so so loved!

In other baby news...

This is my ridiculously gorgeous, super cute and divine baby niece! She is just perfect and arrived on Wednesday night. She and her mama are both doing really well and our whole family is so in love.


Little Man (left) @20 hours old and his sweet little cousin @16 hours old! 

Yes, there is a super strong family resemblance but she really looks like a little lady (as opposed to my big boy there on the left.. he sure had a heap of hair and still does!).

So so so beautiful! I am an auntie!


Saturday, 3 August 2013

Bargain hunting!

A few weeks ago our local cut price retailer, the Reject shop had these fab butlers table for $25! Of course I had to snag one. I've been wanting a butlers table for AGES but they're quite expensive for an item that, especially not currently having a house, I didn't necessarily need! When I found I could snag one for next to nix, I jumped at the chance. The tray is removable and everything!

I styled it up with my Mercury Mason Jar from Pottery Barn and Jute String Ball from Sirocco Homewares. Two decor items I absolutely adore. 
Oh, and the photo of my little man when he was 5 months old with Hubby. Little Man was such a little chubba!

I used it a few weeks ago for my Sister in Law's baby shower. We had the 'Wear Your Guess' tags set up on the table. There will be a full post about the baby shower ASAP! I'm just catching up with myself at the moment after starting back at work this term.

There were also these two sweet signs I nabbed for all of $2 and $5 each! 

After doing some not-so-fun running around errands (bank, doctor, returning stuff to target) I popped in again and snagged the white one of these fabulous ceramic garden stools. They didn't have the light turquoise ones when I was there but I would have grabbed one of them too. Considering the other ceramic stools I've seen around at upwards of $230 I am incredibly happy with these! I will have to either grab another white one or consider the teal... hmm...

(This is a screen shot from their catalogue as mine is already in storage! I can't wait to put it to use in our future home!)

Love these bargains! Have you seen any major bargains recently?
xx Tess

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Hear Ye! Hear Ye! A prince has been born!

It's a BOY! A little prince! 

How exciting for Catherine and Will for the safe arrival of their sweet little boy. Nothing is more special than the arrival of a wee little bundle of joy. 

Seeing the baby cradled in his mummy's arms on the steps of the hospital a short day after his arrival reminded me of the day we brought little man home. Seeing that shot and how carefully Catherine handed him over to Will, really brought home that they are just another new mummy and daddy who, just like the rest of us, have no idea what to do with that small person! Just imagine how much the three of them are going to learn over the next few months (weeks, years, lifetime!) and how their life will have to adjust. Clearly as part of the royal family they will have a slightly different access to help, specialists and pretty much anything that money can buy for their little guy. But just like the rest of us, they know that all he needs are safe arms and lots of love.

Due to the time difference (here in Sydney, Australia) we heard of the little guy's arrival at 5.30 am. For the whole day on Tuesday I was wondering how her first night as mum was going. How much sleep did she get? How was the feeding going? Did the little boy settle overnight for some rest. I bet she hardly slept, and I know she would have spent hours just gazing at that little man just as I did on that first night with my Little Man. 

My family are royalist from way back. My gorgeous Gran, who passed away late last year at the grand age of 103, LOVED everything to do with the Royal family. Everything that happened with the family and most conversations with her would include her opinion on the events or in the least the Queens latest outfit! When Hubby and I took our honeymoon to Europe we saw Buckingham Palace and toured the Mews and saw Kensington Palace. They are seriously gorgeous buildings and I found it so amazing that they are the home for the Royal Family. Now they are home for this sweet little boy. 

My hope is that the media leave them alone enough to learn how to become parents, enjoy their sweet boy's first days and settle into their new jobs. Pfft! Duke and Duchess no longer, mummy and daddy forever! The most important job of all.

Thanks to the fabulous Jodie Vickers Pinterest page for the photos! Fully sourced and referenced below. 

Sources left to right, top to bottom 12, 3 , 45

xx Tess

Friday, 12 July 2013

DIY: Thrift store frame to mini chalkboard

When I was planning a few things for my sister in law’s baby shower this weekend I decided I wanted to have a mini chalkboard for the ‘wear your guess’ table. I have a mini chalkboard but it is currently hanging from Little Man’s play tent and looks super cute there. 

The options were either go to Typo and buy a new one or make one. Since I already had chalkboard paint all I needed was something to make into a chalkboard. Thrift store frames are so perfect for so many DIY jobs and this was a good one!

I scored this frame for just $5 at my local St Vincent de Paul’s shop. The opening is an 8 x 10 inch photo, perfect for this project.

After a quick clean (and removal of the glass) I used my ‘chalk paint’ mix to cover the frame with two coats of Taubmans flat white (special chalk paint mix by me). For more info about chalk paint see my earlier post HERE.

The particle board backing is a perfect smooth surface to make a chalkboard out of. I took it out and gave it two good coats of black chalkboard paint and set it outside to dry.

Whilst it was drying I turned to Pinterest for some inspiration and tutorials of how to do the design bit. I found LOADS of gorgeous fonts but the one I ended up using was Simon Script (available for free at

I hand drew what I wanted on a piece of paper and then covered the entire back with chalk from a standard piece of pavement chalk.

I tacked it on to my mini chalkboard using Blu-tack and traced over my design using a pencil. It really worked!

Any imperfections were easily erased using a fine tip paintbrush and water. Perfect!

Here is my finished product. I will add a photo with it styled at the baby shower tomorrow. For now you just get the final product!

Everyone loves a before and after!

xx Tess

DIY: Cheveron Painted Basket

I picked up another of these really cheap, very versatile baskets with faux leather handles from Kmart for a whopping $10. Little Man's clothes hamper in his room has been one of these baskets since he was born, I also painted one for our 'drop zone' at our old house for our Ergo baby carrier to live in.

HSF confession: embarrassingly I have 99.9% of a post regarding that drop zone and a different painted basket finished, without one last picture of the completed drop zone. Since I know I now have said picture, I will aim to get that up ASAP!

Back to basket. I wanted to paint this one for my Sister in law who is about to have her first hub. So, so excited! I have spent the last few week planning her shower with her and creating LOADS of prints, invites, bunting, drink tags, thank you tags and EVERYTHING for the shower which is tomorrow. I have absolutely loved every minute of it and am now scheming how I can somehow make a meager living out of it.

The theme for the baby shower is pale lemon yellow chevron with white, elephant grey chevron with white and some sweet little elephants. The baby's room is planned to be along these colours too so I used white and grey and chevron as my guide.

Before we get started, taping off chevron is hard. Well I always find it hard anyway! Is there a secret to the whole thing? If so, fill me in. The whole thing may have been made harder as the basket is neither flat nor cylindrical...

I then taped off the chevron pattern i wanted, four times. No kidding, I did it, and re did it, and re did it and finally the last time the chevron managed to match up and work. Shesh! I almost threw in the towel (almost people, I battled on). 

Then I used some sample pot paint (white and Stormcloud Gray both from Taubmans) and ta da!

I am really really happy with it!

xx Tess

Saturday, 22 June 2013

Vacation time: Packing lists

We are heading off on a family holiday tomorrow! Whoooooo! Off to beautiful Port Douglas for 10 gorgeous days of beach, sun, warm weather and lots of good food. I am so excited to have a break from house hunting and spending time with my two favourite boys. It also is the end of my maternity leave as I am heading back to work in mid July.

Part of me is really looking forward to getting back to work, part of me is not. I love my days with the Little Man and we are so busy with the house hunt, play dates and fun activities it will be a big change. A good change. I need to keep telling myself that.

Back to the holiday prep.

It is no secret that I LOVE LISTS. I make them daily, twice daily, honestly too often. This I get from my mum. She is the ultimate list maker but she is also the most organized person I know. In the back of my beautiful Erin Condren planner I have a list: 'Things We Should Always Travel With' and I add to it all the time. From recommendations and from experience. The balloon is a big one in this family.

For holidays I make three lists, one for me, one for the Little Man and one for the plane/car/however we are travelling. Hubby gets to take care of his own packing. He is one of the those easily organised people, and he is a man so his outfits are a million times easier than mine!

Here are the lists I've just made for our trip >>

Off to pack I go!

xx Tess

Monday, 17 June 2013

Home Design Inspiration: Styled Built-in Shelving

I cannot tell you how much I love the look of built in shelving. Styled, neat, effective storage with a mantle for decorating as the season changes, this is my idea of living room perfection. There are literally thousands of shots of beautifully styled builts in on the blogosphere. Some gorgeous DIY built ins too which might be a good option for us as we are going to be on SUPER budget once we find our home.

Here are some of my favourite inspiration photos...

xx Tess

Friday, 14 June 2013

Celebrations inspirations: For the Bar Cart

Ever wondered what the perfect bar cart contents would be? Me too! So I did some research and came up with this simple list of nine lovely items...

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Celebrations inspirations: Bar Carts

Whilst I was away last weekend in Melbourne, my brother who is a graphic designer and I had a big discussion about bar carts. Yes, bar carts. Before I go any further, we are not big drinkers and I don't condone excessive drinking. We are in the grips of 'Gatsby-world' at the moment and during the roaring forties and onwards a bar cart in the living room, well stocked was a normal situation.

I have been pottering around for inspiration on Pinterest and found these gorgeous shots.

My inspiration, wait until you see what I've found....

xx Tess