A Thoughtful Place: March 2011


Friday Eye Candy: “Bloom”

Happy Friday! Okay. . . let’s discuss the title of this post!

So I created my Friday Eye Candy and told my hubby that I needed a cute title for images about blue rooms. Without delay he immediately says, “bloom"?” To which I say, “Huh?” He then proceeds to explain that  blue + room = bloom. I laughed so hard that I had to use it. So thanks to the hubs for the post title today!

I am not sure what it is, but I am crazily drawn to blue these days. Every shade of it! Maybe it’s my sensing that warm summer days with blue ocean water are just around the corner. Or maybe it’s the fact that I keep stumbling upon images like these that make me swoon.  Either way, there is something very calming and serene about the use of blue. 

traditional home












{images via Elle Décor}

How could I end this installment of Friday Eye Candy on any other photo? This is just adorable. 

So do you have a “bloom?” Are you as inspired by blue as I am?

Hope you all have a wonderful and somewhat restful weekend!!!

h a p p y    a p r i l


Reader Feature: Subway Sign

I absolutely love when a reader emails me and says that one of my projects inspired them to create their own. It’s really the reason why I sit down at the laptop each day to post and share. So when Jen from One Creative Momma emailed me about wanting to make her own subway sign, I was over the moon. And there is nothing better than getting the follow up email about the project being done. It wasn’t a smooth road for Jen so I must apologize for any frustration I caused!!! But in the end, her final product turned out much better than mine! Success for sure.

a thoughtful place version


Jen’s Version of the Subway Sign

It’s absolutely beautiful. I love the aged look it has. I think might have to revisit my own sign. Go check out how Jen accomplished this over at One Creative Mama! 


If you have tackled something that you have seen on a thoughtful place,  I would love to see it! You can email me a photo or link at athoughtfulplaceblog@gmail.com


Spring Cleaning Part 1: Toy Cabinet

There has been a general trend in blog land towards Spring cleaning. I have finally hopped on board. No major projects, but little clean-up endeavors here and there. So the first thing I tackled was our downstairs toy cabinet. As our children are now almost three and five, we no longer need to have toys all over the downstairs. It’s a nice trend and the toys they do have, fit nicely in a built in cabinet.  These days, puzzles, art, and books seem to occupy most of their time. These are much easier to get a handle on as well.


My hope is to show you a newly organized space and  offer a couple of tips as well. The not so fun part is showing you the before picture. Ughhhh. I sort of cringe when I look at it, but we all LOVE a good before and after, right!

T h e   B e f o r e


{By the way . . . Elefun is amazingly fun for little ones. Great for playdates when you have a mix of age groups}

So it was pretty bad. It had looked good at one time, but it slowly became this mess. Forget trying to ask the kids to put their toys away. How could they find room. I did make the number one mistake . . . .I allowed my children to help. At first it was okay. My daughter organized the puzzles and my son took charge of the trash. And then suddenly, without any warning, they were madly in love with every old toy that hadn’t seen in months. So much for purging!

T h e   A f t e r


Ahh!!! Much better. I feel like I can breathe again when I open this. The whole cabinet only took 30 minutes from start to finish. As always, it’s easy to do . . . but so easy to put off!

t i p   n u m b e r    o n e


My first tip is the fabric bin from Martha Stewart. I picked mine up at Home Depot and they were on sale for $5. They are not only cute, but a great size for the cabinet. We keep our puzzles in plastic bags and this bin is easy for the kids to grab and put on the family room floor. We do a puzzle train almost every night where we all grab a different puzzle and work on them next to one another. Not sure why the term “puzzle train” took off, but they love it.


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Clear plastic bins! I can’t say enough about using clear ones. The kids know what they have and are more apt to pull it out and play with it if it’s not hidden. {yes . . . I am contradicting myself with the cute blue polka dot bins . . but those host the items they use every single day.} I picked mine up from Costco, but you can find them anywhere.



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Way back in the day when I first started reading blogs, I came across this idea. I think someone used it as an adorable way to display a recipe in the kitchen. If you are out there, please let me know so I can give you credit!!!! So this was not my brain child, but I adapted it for my kiddos. I picked up cookie sheets from The Dollar Tree and used mod podge to attach the scrapbook paper. The kids use them all the time. They play with their magnet letters or take them in the car to use as a flat surface for drawing. I highly recommend them.


So that is it! Spring Cleaning Installation number one! Just a little bit that makes a big difference.


Have you been bit by the Spring cleaning bug yet? What’s your latest project?

And I just found out that I spelled “legos” incorrectly! Off to fix it on my plastic bin! I love that my readers are looking out for me!!!!


Easter Ideas Part 1

Between finishing up the mudroom and taking it easy this past weekend, I am a little slow on the Easter décor. So I thought I would show you some inspiration from the beautiful Easter my sister hosted last year.

I am very much drawn to using natural elements when decorating for holidays, so her use of wheat grass and brown eggs had me swooning. Maybe you can take away an idea or two as well.


Her kitchen island had this beautiful basket filled with blown out eggs. She used brown eggs and then dyed the other eggs a very soft cream and a pale pale blue. I think the natural look of them is gorgeous. She filled the hurricanes with moss, a small nest and a few small blue eggs.




Her beautiful table was a mix of plaid and polka dot plates. She white washed teracota pots and planted wheat grass. If you are hosting Easter, it only takes about 10 days for the seeds to sprout so there is plenty of time.


And being the very thoughtful aunt, she filled my son’s pot with lollipops as the poor little thing is allergic to chocolate! Poor guy. The rest of the pots were filled with chocolate bunnies peeking out.


I will be back with some Easter goodies I am working on {slowly but surely!}. Thanks to my talented and beautiful sister for providing this great inspiration.


Mini Mudroom Reveal

I put the finishing touches on our mini mudroom! It has had quite the little journey. It started out as a mess of a coat closet. One of those where you toss things in, and they never come out! We tapped into some unused space under the staircase and created Christmas décor storage. Then the space became a “Clubhouse.” It still wasn’t functioning as well as we needed more of a command central for the kids when coming in and out of the house. I am so excited with how we revamped it as it’s working great! Here is what it looks like now. Oh, and prepare yourself for a plethora of photos. I couldn’t stop snapping.



There is something so gratifying about organizing a space and actually having it function just as you had hoped. The bench I scored for $75 and you can read about how I transformed it here. You can go here and here for the blue and white fabric. The closest match to my floral fabric can be found here.


When we first made over the space, there was more pink it it. I reprinted the “You Are My Sunshine” print in a blue that goes with the rest of the space.


Nothing like good ole’ Target for a $4 clock. Works great here as we are headed out the door and my daughter is suddenly fascinated with learning to tell time.


This has to be one of my favorite finds lately. I picked it up at The Container Store for $10. It snaps together easily and can hang from the sticky hooks so there is no damage to the walls. I am now using these for the children’s artwork and important papers. I bought file folders to put in each space. I don’t know about you, but the artwork seems to be coming out of the woodwork. So now when they finish their masterpieces for the day, we stick them in here. That way we don’t accidentally toss something special and we can look through them later to see which ones we will hang up and which ones can go in the circular file {aka . . . trash}.



The hanging system is clear so I just printed out their initials and filled the background with blue before printing. Cut them out and used tape to secure them to the files.



I fell in love with these hooks a few months back. I bought them and didn’t know where they would go. Well what do you know! They are perfect for in here for the children’s sweaters and tote bags. I picked them up at one of my all time favorite paper stores. You can now find Confetti Ink and their amazing paper goods online here. 


Ahhhh!!! You see that!! Even my two year old is digging the new hooks and actually using them.


Because it is a coat closet, our mini mudroom is obviously quite small.  Therefore it is also really tough to photograph. There is plenty of room for the kiddos to plop down and get there shoes on and be ready for the day. There is enough head room that my husband and I can also sit comfortably on the bench.


The ABC print is from Couture Prints and is matted with burlap.


The shoe bins are from The Dollar Tree and have been working out great. At first my youngest would just throw his shoes on the ground after taking them off. He is now putting them in his bucket. Success!!!! One last thing for mommy to pick up! The kids like to play “school” in here with the chalkboard and the magnetic board. We have had some mean games of hangman recently!!!

Here is a little look back at  the many lives of our coat closet. You can read all about it here.


There is a tutorial for the magnetic board and painting the stripes here.

So we still have the storage pockets on the door and they have changed my life. I LOVE them. More about those here.

I relocated the items that were in the white storage unit to other places and better utilized the awkward sloping ceiling with the storage bench. Nothing like redoing a space just two months after completing. But I must say it was well worth it.


Done at last! Functioning well at last! Not sure a coat closet has ever had so many reincarnations!


Thanks for sticking with me on the long process!

Sharing this project with:

Just A Girl

The Shabby Nest


Chic on a Shoestring Budget

Elements Interiors

DIY by Design

Green Door Designs

Today’s Creative Blog

Under the Table and Dreaming

Centsational Girl

Mad In Crafts

Polly Want a Crafter

The DIY Showoff Party Parade

The DIY Show Off


Friday Eye Candy: Clean and White

There must be something about spring time and white for me. I love the clean fresh look of white. Especially, when you infuse a jolt of color here and there. A while back Gwyneth Paltrow’s house was featured in House & Garden. There are some yummy examples of  white working well.

Living room.


Apple\'s bedroom.

{images via House & Garden and Hooked On Houses}

I just love the dark stenciled wall walls in the bathroom with the white furniture and accessories.


And here is another example of using white well in a room. Megan from Honey We’re Home chose a beautiful yellow for the walls, but went with white furniture and rug to keep it all fresh. Beautiful room.


What about you? Do you like to freshen things up with white in your house for spring?  I think I might be adding some more white in our master bedroom. Hmmmm. 

h a p p y   w e e k e n d !


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