FREEography: Willow House $25 Giveaway!

Welcome to my Willow House blog party!  We are kicking off your Christmas shopping with a great GIVEAWAY and lots of specials from Colleen Sauter, Design Consultant for Willow House (formerly Southern Living at Home)!  

There are so many great deals to be had and a GIVEAWAY for HOUSEography readers!  Keep reading...

Here's the deal available to all subscribers on Colleen's website - spend $39.96, you will get any item $40 or less for 50% off!  This includes outlet and special items which are updated every Monday on Colleen's website.  There are some amazing deals on there (some more than 70% off).  You can order direct from Colleen's website or you can contact her for an order form.  When you check out, be sure to put my name (Melissa MacGregor) as the hostess!  Happy Shopping!!

Personally (if you are looking to get me a gift... just sayin'), I am coveting this wire tiered basket -
It seems there are countless possibilities for using this in so many different ways.  And, I love that you can just use pieces of it for smaller displays. 

In case you are wondering, Colleen is a very old friend of mine (30 years and counting!) who now lives with her family in the Atlanta burbs.  You may remember our visit to her gorgeous red accented house last summer!  Well, Colleen decided to turn her Willow House obsession into a business (despite already working a full-time job and raising 2 kids - no idea how she does this!). 

Colleen and her cutie family!
NOW for the BEST part!!  Colleen is offering one lucky HOUSEography subscriber $25 towards a Willow House purchase on her website.  With all of the deals and sales going on, you can really do some damage to your Christmas shopping list with this little bit of help from Colleen! 

Here's how to enter (ONE ENTRY PER PERSON!):

  1. Become a follower!  You must be a follower to win. You can follow HOUSEography on Facebook, Twitter, Blogger, Google Friend Connect (link on the lower right side of the page), or another reader. 
  2. Submit a comment on this post and let me know what you plan to get with your gift certificate and how you follow HOUSEography.
  3. Enter by Sunday, December 5th at 11:59 p.m. ET!  Be sure to sign in to leave a comment or include your email address with your comment so I can contact you.  One entry per email address.  US residents only.

More info on contacting Colleen!  (Email me if you need her cell number to ask questions or place an order by phone)

Willow House
Colleen Sauter
Design ConsultantEmail:   yankee1171@yahoo.com
Website:   luv2party.willowhouse.com


Willow House Giveaway STARTS MONDAY!

In case you are home reading blogs and not out snapping up awesome bargains for Black Friday, I wanted to give you a quick heads up that we are planning a great blog party and giveaway with my long time friend Colleen Sauter, Willow House Design Consultant, starting on Monday! Colleen will be offering one lucky HOUSEography reader $25 towards a Willow House purchase on her website!

Colleen (an avid shopper like me!) is getting into the Black Friday action with 20% off everything including sale items!!  Wow! You must email her (yankee1171@yahoo.com) your order to receive the discount. Website orders DO NOT get the deal.  Also, be sure to list me (Melissa MacGregor) as your hostess when you order with her!

That means that you can get any of these for about $10 or less each!  Hello Christmas gifts!

And check out these amazing deals!!!

And there is still plenty of time to order for Christmas delivery!  Woohoo!!  Happy Shopping!

Willow House
Colleen Sauter
Design ConsultantEmail:   yankee1171@yahoo.com
Website:   luv2party.willowhouse.com


Happy Thanksgiving!

From our house to yours, Happy Thanksgiving!

Travel safely!


Thanksgiving Mantel Decor

Here's a quick post about my Thanksgiving mantel decor.  Better late than never!  I've actually had it up for a while but blogging has been a bit delayed due to our little vacation in Mexico.  But, now I am back and gearing up for a long holiday weekend with loads of family in town.  In fact, hubby's whole family is coming in from New England and we are beyond excited to fill our house to its limits with family for the holiday.

Here is my current family room Thanksgiving mantel which I think is fine but definitely not my best work yet.  I feel like it's too cluttered and not cohesive in color.  I love the individual pieces though - all of which I have had for years. 

 This is my favorite Thanksgiving decoration.  It's actually a candle holder but I rarely burn anything inside. 
 These little pilgrims have a certain kitsch quality but they still work. 
This little was a HomeGoods $3.99 find.  I thought he was cute but this probably won't be his final home in my future Thanksgiving decor.
Are you doing any last minute decorating before family and friends arrive for the weekend?  Are you hosting or traveling? 

Have a great weekend!

Tablecloth Trauma!

Just 24 hours before our weekend guests arrive, I realized that we have a serious tablecloth situation.  When I purged a large portion of my tablecloth collection in preparation for the yard sale last spring, I dumped several large tablecloths which had seen better days.  Now it seems I was left with only 1 120" tablecloth and it was a polyester one that I just don't love but definitely is good enough for everyday purposes.  Not good enough for a huge family Thanksgiving dinner however. 

Fortunately I did have this awesome table runner which I love.  I have had it on my plain table for the last month and it's great.  Of course it's from HomeGoods and it has great embroidered details.  Will work fine for our pre-Thanksgiving Italian dinner tonight.

So, I stopped off at TJ Maxx on my way home from work today. 

Laaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!  [that's me singing]

Of course, a quick run through the table linens aisle yielded nada and I almost headed out to try something else until I stumbled on this big beauty (70" x 126"!) on the clearance rack.  And...$10!  It needed a good ironing but it will do the trick.  I'll post a picture of the final table this weekend so be sure to check back!


Oh, oh, down in Mexico!

As you may have gathered from my haphazard posting over the last two weeks, we took a little post election vacation.  Hubby works in election politics so September and October are a tad bit crazy in our house.  This is our first major election cycle with 2 kids and hopefully it was as bad as they come with the kids both being so young.  2 years from now, I think/hope things will be different.  So, we planned a little trip away... Riviera Maya! 


We stayed at the Iberostar Paraiso Maya near Playa Del Carmen.  I highly recommend all-inclusives with kids - no need to worry about spending $15 each for a hot dog when the kids eat only 2 bites each!  This was our first all-inclusive experience and we would definitely do it again - like a cruise with a beach and no sea sickness! 

Even the few cloudy days were great!

 And the hotel was gorgeous, but still kid-friendly!

 We just couldn't get enough of this...
 or this...
or this...
And the margaritas were pretty good too!


An Apple a Day

When my mom emptied my grandmother's apartment after she died last summer, she found a painting that I did in high school when I went through an oil painting phase.  She brought it down to me but I wasn't sure what I would do with it.

When I was leaving the house the other day, I noticed this empty area near our side door and stairs to the basement.

 Seems like the perfect place for a little painting done by me.

And here's a close-up in case you are interested in critiquing.

 I really wish I had time to do some artwork again.


When you get lemons...A Junk Drawer Overhaul!

A bit of a mishap in our house last week.  Jim was adjusting the pot-filler over our stove after the back splash was installed, and may have pulled the pot-filler a little further off than he should have.  WATER!  Water, water, everywhere!  Gushing out of the pipe on the wall above the stove.  Woops!  Unfortunately, I ran downstairs, instead of Jim, but I didn't realize the water shut-off was in a different place from where it was before our addition.

So, we had a lot of water on the floor, in the cabinets, in the drawers, in the stove... everywhere!  Fortunately we were able to clean it up really quickly so there was no damage.  The stove dried out and it works fine too.

But, some of the drawers got wet including our incredibly messy drunk drawer.  I put everything on the counter and ended up with this.


I had been thinking about organizing this drawer for a while - particularly since we keep some spare keys in here that we never know what they go to.  I headed for the Container Store (one of my favorite places) to find some drawer organizers.  Since it's the junk drawer, I didn't want to break the bank.  Fortunately I knew they carried the inexpensive wire drawer organizers that I used in my silverware drawer and in the dresser in our family room.

After I cleaned out the junk and the impossible to salvage stuff.

Now I have this -

[Sigh of relief] 

Yes, I know where the water shut-off is now.   

Linking to Thrifty Decor Chick. Thanks for the mention, Mrs. Limestone!
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Dining Room Budget Decor

Like I said last week, I come from a long line of shoppers.  My mom scored some gorgeous decorative plates at her local Salvation Army store.  She paid $3.99 each but the original boutique store price tag on the back of each says $36!  Go Mom!  Fortunately for me, my mom couldn't find a good place for them in her house, so she brought them for me.

I used them to give my buffet area a little more interest.

Here it is before - 

And here it is now -

I think it adds just enough interest around the mirror and it was just lucky that the plates were black and gold like the mirror.  Like it was meant to be!

I'm still working on one other corner of the dining room but I think it's really getting there now.  I have some ideas for bigger plans for in there but I am still thinking them through.


Remodelaholic Featured!

Welcome Remodelaholic fans!  Hope you enjoy HOUSEography and stay awhile. 

For everyone else, our mantel project is featured on Remodelaholic today!  Thanks Cassity for the feature!

Backsplash Finale!

I never thought I would be so excited about a kitchen backsplash.  If I had known it was going to make me this happy, I would not have waited 15 months to get it installed!

Here's the last of the before pictures -

And after -
 What do you think?  No matter what you think...  I love it!  It totally changes the look of the kitchen.


About that Backsplash...

Remember when I told you about backsplash shopping?  (if not, click here to read about that)  So, that was almost 6 months ago.  Well, now here we are doing it!  Well, not us - we hired someone.  Very unlike us but I really wanted it done before our big Thanksgiving and the holidays in general.  So, we hired it out. 

Here are the before pictures.

 Now here are the guys working on installing the tile.

And here's the tile finished before the grout. I love the early morning light in my kitchen.


 And here's the finished product with Delorian Gray grout (although it's not totally dry in these pictures so it appears very dark).  Tomorrow I'll show you the full before and after with all of our stuff back in the kitchen.

Check back later today to find out the winner of last week's CSN Stores giveaway!