our desert oasis

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We’ve had a flurry of activity these past weeks and are just now, maybe, finding our sea legs at last.  And so, I’m beyond excited to finally share one of the latest home projects going on around here.  Drum roll, please….we now have a real living room!  When we moved in last Spring, the living room and dining areas were awkwardly divided by a wall which made both rooms feel like  bowling alleys.  They were also devoid of a lot of natural light.  As I’ve already shared, we recently painted the dining area a French Vanilla which was incredibly transforming.  Paint is miraculous indeed!  It also helped to cut down a wildly overgrown Spruce tree that was right against the house and blocking natural light from two windows (and the insurance company asked us to remove it anyways).

The living room has been a dumping zone ever since we moved in and since its the only room on the main level that can be used for sitting and relaxing, it was really important to me that we complete it sooner rather than later.  This is the room where Ben plays the piano, the boys practice their string instruments, and where we cuddle at night for family read alouds.  Plus, when we have company over its the obvious place to sit down and talk if friends haven’t already gathered in the adjacent dining area.

We began by painting the room in the same French Vanilla as we painted the dining area.  (Its really Behr’s Polished Pearl, but we’ve described it to the Sprouts as French Vanilla since food names make more sense to kiddos!)  And, with the exception of the window panels, there is nothing brand new in this room.  The baby grand is a family heirloom.  It was Ben’s grandmother’s and we received it as a beyond-amazing-wedding-gift.  The palm print is one I’ve had since my design firm days and I continue to love it.  Its obviously the driving force behind the  “desert oasis” concept used for the room (and “desert oasis” works since, well, we live in the high desert!).  The glass table is also something we bought years ago.  The curtain rods came with the house and although I’d prefer a visually “heavy” rod, we are on a budget and so they are certainly good enough for now.  The sofa, red orange chairs, and mini stacking bookshelf are new- to-us, but were delightful frugal finds from local furniture consignment stores.  I’m still giddy over the furniture, really.  The chairs are vintage Danish modern and the sofa was custom made for a woman in Telluride.  Since most people around here prefer more traditional or rustic furniture, we got these items for a steal!  Swoon.  And all of the pieces are incredibly well constructed and comfortable!

I’m also excited about the window panels!  They’re from Target (the Threshold Farrah Lattice Window panels) and are my cheap alternative to the over $300 panels I’d found at Ballard Design and Smith & Noble.  The Target ones met our budget and, besides, who in their right mind would want expensive window panels with a bunch of kiddos running around?  Sometime in the future, we’ll also add overhead lighting (and get rid of the currently very necessary lamp next to the piano).  And, there are unphotographed corners that still need some TLC.  All in all, though, the room has already become what I’d anticipated:  a wonderful retreat for family snuggles and reading as well as a place to make music together!

Before we moved into the house, the living room was a blank palette.
Before we moved into the house, the living room was a blank palette.
The boys were delighted to help with the demolition of  "the wall".
The boys were delighted to help with the demolition of “the wall“.
Opening up the wall between the two rooms made a huge difference.
Opening up the wall between the two rooms made a huge difference.

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I learned to quilt when we lived in Montana.  This is my first project, a mod lap quilt!
I learned to quilt when we lived in Montana. This is my first project, a mod lap quilt!

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