Ninja Birthday Party

Last summer we had our first birthday party in the house, and the birthday boy wanted a ninja party.

My kids had fun making the candy sushi and Oreo ninja faces to ring the cake top.  I’ve learned to pick-and-choose what I want to spend time doing for party prep and what I want to delegate out for ease.  Unwrapping packaged Rice Krispy bars and ordering a red and white  grocery store cake to decorate myself saved me some time but still looked super cute.

The tablecloth is just unhemmed yardage from Joann’s on our blue makeshift table.  (We’ve since upgraded to a beautiful custom marble piece!)

The calligraphy marks are cut black poster board–with the middle character meaning “ninja.”

We invited the boys to come and attend ninja training.  I made free invitations on Paperless Post by uploading a photo of our son.

The boys arrived in their ninja suits and we took their photo in front of the Japanese-inspired chalk art.  I didn’t want to take those happy lanterns down after the party…especially since our house is still so sparse from moving in.  I found those on Oriental Trading Company and hung them up with fishing line.

www.tphblog.comIf there is an opportunity to play dress up, I will.

www.tphblog.comMy husband played ninja teacher and instructed the boys at the beginning of the party that they would have to pass three tests of agility, precision, and strength to become a ninja.

The agility test in the treehouse was a hit as was the bean bag toss off the back deck…the zipline challenge was a bad, bad idea on our part, but no one was hurt!  Oh, man.
www.tphblog.comwww.tphblog.comWe also had a star piñata because who doesn’t like to beat the crap out of something with a stick?

At the end of the training challenges, the new newly-minted ninjas ceremonially received their ninja swords, which also doubled as part of their party favors.

The kiddos also left with a little box of Japanese candies.www.tphblog.comLooking forward to more parties here in the new house!

Blogging Like It’s Nineteen-Ninety-Two-Thousand-Six

I’ve been blogging since 2006, which would lead some to assume that I’ve learned many a technical thing in the span of almost nine years (wow).  But, nope, I haven’t.  Or made money.  Or something, right, to keep going?

www.tphblog.comThe Playroom

It seems like it’s time for a State of the Blog Address.  After much thought on what to do with with it while it sputters here in the dark ages, I’ve decided…

…to keep blogging like it’s 2006, for better or worse.  That means pure joy, no pressure, fun, on whim.  That also means that while I do care about how it looks here and it does pain me that it needs a visual overhaul, I’m going to be fine with it until I have time to polish things up around here, remember, no technical skills.  But right now I want to work on our home, prepare for homeschool (again) next year, and just write for the fun of it without the downer of maintenance (for this season, you get it, I know).

More than working on my house this last year (which was mucho), I’ve worked on myself even more.  And, many things were revealed, straightened away, fortified, or booted out.  I finally realized that the elusive balance we crave can only exist when we don’t try to do it all.  Because you can’t and I can’t.  This is hard for someone like me who wants to do it all and has a million and one ideas to test out.  I’m embracing good enough when good enough is acceptable, which, really, is almost always.  The stubborn perfectionist in me just cringed.

Blogging was just something I couldn’t cut from my life.  I do it for the fellowship with all you other creatives and the warm-fuzzy that comes from occasionally inspiring someone else with something I do here on The Painted House.  I just had to realize the blog balance comes from keeping things low-key here…uh, like it’s been.  I’d like a little background music for this:  seasons change, and this blog may someday.  Or it might always be 2006 around here.  Because I do have a million and one ideas.  Mind. Never. Rests.

www.tphblog.comWe are adding trim to the doors of this cabinet, painting it, and moving it to the dining room…using what we have!

I know it’s all, tell us something we don’t know, but I just wanted to say it all out loud, ya know?  That this a-little-here, a-little-there is intentional.  I’m still around here.  Just on a little slower time.

www.tphblog.comThe upstairs sleeping alcove…awkward space turned cool with mattresses from the loft…painting pizzazz in progress.

Thank you for sticking around here with me.  I am looking into obtaining some technical skills this spring that the kids and I can work on next school year.  I’ll share that post soon–SO EXCITED!  Hopefully learnin’ stuff will have a positive effect on ye olde blog.  And, things are getting done around here…guest light arrives next week!  And I promise to show good enough pics along the way.  Here’s to you, and to me, for knowing where we’re at and embracing the steps along the way.

And, you know you can find me in between posts on Instagram, that adorable, precious, time-suck app.

Around the House | New Kitchen Table & More!

Well, hey, happy new year!  Okay, are we all done talking about this?
www.tphblog.comWe had a wonderful, cozy Christmas.  But, I tell you what, I am charged and ready to go for 2015.  It is time to get cracking on some delayed decorating around here.  I’m trying to get as much done before school ends…because of this (99% sure it’s happening)!  So, let the zhushing games begin!

It took a year for me to decide what to do, but it was worth it:  the new kitchen table!

IMG_8251 www.tphblog.comYeah, hot and sexy…you know, as all family dinner tables should be.  This fabulousness is a variation of Grey Furniture’s Line Table.  Sarah at Grey rounded the ends for a sleek silhouette.


I picked up these arm chairs from Antiques & Beyond–love the 80s vibe going down on these babies.  Pickled (I said it) wood, contemporary styling on a classic shape, they are perfect for the look I’m after.  I’ll send them to the upholsterer once I figure out drapery fabric for the big window.  The label on the bottom says Century Chair delivered to Bloomingdale’s New York, New York, 1987.  I love that.


As for the side chairs, these are on order–a nice echo of the arm chairs.  The finish is polished aluminum, but I will have them powder coated in a color pop–to be decided.

Do you see the big marshmallow sofa here?www.tphblog.comIt is a new addition in the family room, a room that is also in the process of getting some love.  Soon:  paint on the walls, hang a painting over that skinny window (to hide TV glare), pillows, drapery, rug, odds & ends–but all this depends on that blasted drapery fabric in the adjoining kitchen.  I’ll be so happy when I figure that one out!

And, then, the chandelier for the guest room arrived!  But!  Once it was here, I decided it really needed to live in my daughter’s closet.  It should be up soon, hanging beautifully between the carved doors–seriously, she has the coolest room.  In the meantime the girl chose pink for her closet walls.  I’m liking it.  I really hope I stumble upon a sculptural white lacquer dresser soon.www.tphblog.comAnyways, I have tweaked things in the guest room and feel like another fixture is needed–it is ordered and should be here in a few weeks.  So, yeah, longest 6-week challenge ever!

And, furniture is moving around the house.  I’m trying to use what I have.  Trying!  Even though I am stretching for something so different in this house than the last one.  The yellow dresser from the loft made it to the upper floor landing.www.tphblog.comFlanking the dresser, Paul McCobb chairs, that I defiled with steel balls where the wood originally was, will be painted black and receive new upholstery.  Please tell me you see the clown face in the above photo.

We moved the Mengel Module piece to the side entry.  I do think I like it there.  I safely tucked the original knobs away and tried these carved stone ones from Anthropologie.  I LOVE that tablecloth and have it hanging temporarily until I can decide if I want to frame it for this spot (I do).  www.tphblog.comI don’t usually dispense decorating advice, but a few things struck me with this post–things of which I am proud of doing.

Take it Slow | I explored a lot of options on the kitchen table throughout the year, but I didn’t rush or settle.  We had people over to eat many times on our wobbly, scuffed temporary table, and I was okay with it knowing I was being patient for the right fit.  I’m embracing this slow decorating as my ally to get things right, and this mentality feeds my patience.

Let it Go | Perfectionism.  I’m showing you spaces FAR from complete or perfect.  I’m showing you my process, whether right or wrong.  So proud am I to be at this point.

Make Peace | Does it unnerve me to see in these photos wood floors that didn’t turn out to my specifications?  Oh, yes.  And all the other details in the remodel that didn’t finish right.  This is where I give myself grace for the impossibility of managing it all perfectly in a hurried, inhospitable environment with difficult people.  And, I have to forgive.

Stay the Course | I’ve wanted to bail many times on this design challenge I’ve given myself.  There is all the second guessing, only to come back to the original heart plan.  When I’m scared, I think I should do what is easy–but that doesn’t make my pulse race with joy.  I’m trying to stay true to myself and our family, because that is where we’ll really feel at home.

Okay, guys, until next time (catch me on Instagram)!  XOXO

An Unofficial Guest Room Reveal-ish

Hey, there, you know I have felt horrible about not sharing the semi-finished guest room with you after you kindly rode the waves of the One Room Challenge with me (as a link-up participant).  So I don’t have the finished pillows or chandelier yet, but I wanted to finally give a little peek around.  The photos aren’t great, but I had a little pocket of time today and I seized it.  I’ll take more time when the final details are in.www.tphblog.comOh my goodness, it is December 19, and I bought those mums a week before Thanksgiving.  The lamps are from Screen Door Antiques that I found when dear Fieldstone Hill Dar and family came to visit me and mine at the cottage.  She can tell you how long I waffled over those lamps…still waffling over keeping them here in the guest room.www.tphblog.comSuper bad photo below, but I want to show you how the cornice boards evened out the uneven height of the window.  I do love how a very homely craft like quilting looks quite modern when framed as a segment.  I’m thinking of you awesome ladies in Gee’s Bend.

www.tphblog.comI did finish the art in time for our Thanksgiving guests.  It was a new idea I had for my ribbon infatuation–so I kinda consider it a rough sketch or prototype.  I like how it turned out on the plywood and look forward to making more and improving the idea.

www.tphblog.comThe rug was in our kitchen (click to see more bad, yellow photos of our kitchen) in the last house, our rancher (click to see TPH’s most visited post and an amazing before and after).

www.tphblog.comThis photo gives you a closer look of the concrete floor finish–so much better than what we were dealing with before.

www.tphblog.comHopefully I’ll have lighting up in the new year.  Then we’ll have a big reveal with a marching band and sky writing.  It’ll be grand.

Until then, I’ll be Christmassing with the family, many who are really sick.  Oh, man, last night my husband and I cleaned up the most epic vomit explosion of our parenting careers.  Let’s just say that I am so happy that we tiled the walls around the boys’ toilet here in the new house.  Gross, why did I tell you that?  Hurry!  Look at this and forget what I just wrote:IMG_7832Marlowe never wastes an opportunity to be irresistible.  I think I know why he likes curling up under the Baby J b-day party tree…

Fun and color, I can’t quit you.

Have a lovely, healthy weekend, friends!

A Little Christmas

Remember that Christmas when we didn’t have enough furniture to fill our house so we compensated with an enormous tree?  And, remember that tree was so big that we didn’t have enough ornaments to fill it so we compensated with paper plates and party hats on a whim?
www.tphblog.comRemember that Christmas when we used leftover Ninja party lanterns to fill in the new-house void and distract from disparate pieces of furniture?

Remember when that Christmas is this Christmas?www.tphblog.comI hope this Christmas is a season of joy and peace for you no matter what stage of the game you are in with your house.

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