Vacation Over + Back to School = Back to work

Most vacations are great, and ours did not disappoint. A lot of quality time with family, playing in the sun, sand, and surf, dining on delicious food, biking around Hilton Head, and the list goes on. But returning from vacation can be a bit stressful especially when it backs up to shopping for school supplies, starting extracurricular activities, getting set up on a new computer rig, reorganizing my work area and another list goes on.

I think the biggest thing that set me back from what I love doing the past couple of weeks was having a great friend move to Texas for a job. I mean don’t get me wrong I am so happy for her! She is such a gifted, lovely, inspiring young lady. She is one of those people that you know is going to do something great with her life. Bronte, who I might add is less than half my age, helped me set up my blog, helped me with contributing and writing my fashion posts and Facebook posts, and cared for my children. I know she will continue to be a conspirator of ideas and always be there to help via text and email, but I will miss our long afternoon chats in person, face to face! I realized I don’t even have a picture to post of her. Bronte?

So I am back to work. I have an art show to prepare for, pictures to post and projects to complete. The blog must go on!

Our vacation was fabulous. This year there was a noticeable difference in how we spent our time and what we were able to do. In years past our son who is six was not independent enough to allow for certain activities. Even though we still have to be on guard in the ocean and pool, my children are both great swimmers for their age which lessen some of the worries. Duke and I were both able to swim, take pictures and exercise.

Being a visual person I have always noticed the wildlife on Hilton Head Island, but this was the first year we were able to photograph and learn about them. I am posting pictures of family first and tomorrow I will follow up with some interesting animal shots.



My Beauties. I am so thankful for their special bond.


There is a big ship out there, and my son is convinced it is crewed by pirates.


Zella and I are heading into the ocean. She had a fish nibble on her, and I am trying to convince her it’s no big deal. She is not buying my pep talk.


Typically the water is calm, but occasionally you will get some decent boogie board waves. I love this sporty Hurley swim shirt.



Underwater cameras are a lot of fun for kids and adults. My children can spend hours taking shots of each other in the pool. Email me if you have any questions on the best ones to purchase, The Duke is an expert.


Heading in for a swim. Our family is a big fan of swim shirts. They don’t move around; they protect you from the sun, and they are fun to wear. I often swim laps in a two piece workout suit, but I am a wimp when it comes to cold water, so I usually have a swim shirt on. This colorful one is from Trina Turk.


An early evening walk with Zella. We are having fun searching for baby Stingrays. More on that in my next post.


This isn’t the greatest picture of the Duke, and I but most of our photos are of our kids. We rarely take any of the two of us together. My ten-year-old daughter is pretty proud of this shot.  She took this picture during an after dinner walk on the beach.

Going through the pictures, my sweet husband took on vacation snapped me back into focus. No pun intended. Ha!

Tomorrow some fun animal shots and interesting wild life facts.With Thanks!

Customized Loft Beds

What a Project!

After finding the stairs to a loft bed at my local thrift store, we considered purchasing a pre-made bed. You can’t imagine how difficult it is for two designers to buy a kit especially after perusing Pinterest! Plus, somewhere along the way we decided we needed two lofts instead of just one.

Serendipity was at work when I found these stairs a few weeks after Zella read us her persuasive essay about needing a loft in her room. Some of you may recall these pictures from my Color Inspiration post.


Loft1HR         loft2HR        loft3HR


The Duke (a nickname for my husband -which if you would like to know why he is called this, comment below) came up with a few ideas then went to work measuring, planning, and purchasing.


wood1             wood2                   Corners


My husband cut all the wood per his design while I painted.


The wood had to be pre-drilled and partially assembled before we moved the pieces into Zella’s room.

 L-building2         loft5          L-building3

                                              Loft6                            loft4

My little man got in on the action.


The beds are going to be in an L-shape. It was so fun to see the first one put together!



Because we added a second bed, the stairs had to be modified. We also added some trim for a more finished look, and we were talked into some Beanie Boo shelves. Ugh!

                                         Beanie-Boo-shelves  loft10

One of my favorite parts of these beds are the railings. The Duke made them from Poplar and enhanced the grain with some aqua water-based stain.


The decorative balls on each post were also given a little color. The stain is subtle but adds to the color scheme of the room.

                                       Balls1 Balls2


The Duke spent several weekends planning and building these beautiful, customized loft beds for Zella’s room, earning Major Daddy Points!



With Thanks!