Chelsey Andrews

DIY-ify: Under Cabinet Rice and Pasta Storage

Written on March 20, 2014 at 3:00 am , by

The husband and I have plans for our tiny kitchen, and it will take quite a bit of time to finish. For now we are going to do a little here, and a little there. Right now we are working on storage the storage situation since our 94-year-old home is lacking in closets and cupboard space. Our challenge: find storage on a small budget. I’ve seen this jar storage wandering Pinterest A LOT, in fact I used it for my calendar work station DIY. After looking through our overstuffed cupboard and knocking over the jar of rice, I decided it’s time for a change. I’ve installed a Pasta and Rice Jar Storage under one of our open cabinets. This project took 1 hour and cost under $10. My kind of kitchen organizer update.


- glass jars (with lids)

- screws with washers

- nail

- hammer

- drill



- Use the nail to poke a hole through the center of the jar lid.

- Measure and use a pencil to mark where you’d like the jars to hang. Drill in the screws through the holes you poked through the lids into the bottom of your cupboard.

- Fill your jars and screw onto the lids. Done!

I’m so happy with how this turned out. I definitely think I’ll be changing the jars to quart jars. We need just a bit more room for the pasta, etc. Ok, happy Thursday!

- Chelsey, The Paper Mama

Melissa Bahen

Building a Dream House: Trussed Up

Written on March 19, 2014 at 8:38 am , by

Hi! I’m Melissa. I write about food, family, and farm life at Lulu the Baker. My family and I are about to fulfill one of those good, old-fashioned life-long dreams: we’re building our Dream House.

I mentioned in my last post that I am quite astonished every month when I sit down to write this column and realize all of the progress that’s been made on the Dream House since I last wrote. I don’t think words can accurately convey that feeling! Even though I know I’m going to experience it every time I write another Dream House post, I’m practically speechless when it happens. The first thing I do when I get ready to write another post is go through the photos on my phone and scroll back until I find the last picture I used in my previous post. That’s really the only way I can keep track of time in these photos, the only way I know where we left off last month and where to begin this month. And while I’m scrolling and passing pictures, I just keeping thinking, “No way! The garage and porch hadn’t been poured yet?? None of the interior walls were even up??” And that makes me so excited to see what great things will happen after today! When it’s time for me to write my Dream House post for April, what milestones will we have passed between now and then, I wonder.

One of the first things to happen this month was pouring two more major concrete pads–the garage floor and the porch. My husband tells me that the company doing our concrete (not the concrete in the walls, but the concrete you see and walk on) has a reputation in the area for being the best in the biz. The other workmen say the concrete guys are artists, and ooh and aah over their expert expansion joints and exquisite exposed aggregate.

About that same time, the framers started working on the interior walls of the main floor. Our contractor is really good about telling us when fun things are happening, things that involves huge trucks and really heavy machinery. He gave us a heads-up the day the massive support beams in the ceiling were being placed, and even though it was a little drizzly, we had fun watching the crane lift and place those massive pieces of wood and steel. Right after they placed all of the big beams, they installed all of the decking for the top floor. The framers also pretty much built the whole garage in one day! It was as though one minute there was no garage, and then all of a sudden it appeared out of thin air. Our workmen are magicians!

And then everything got really exciting and started moving like greased lightning! Two of the three sets of stairs were put in–the set going down to the basement and the set going up to the second floor from the entry way–which means no more climbing on ladders, hallelujah! All of the interior and exterior walls on the top floor were framed, which means we can see how big the rooms are and what the layout is like up there. It also means we can see what our view will be from the upstairs windows, something we’ve only been able to guess about for the past 7 years. And it’s stunning!

The trusses for the garage were not only delivered, but also installed, which means that our house is actually starting to look like a house instead of a big, strange series of boxes. Some dear friends visited us over the weekend, and we all went out to the Dream House for a picnic and a tour. The sun was shining and the air was warm. We ate and talked and played, climbed dirt piles, threw frisbees, and started not only imagining what life will be like out there in the fresh, country air, but enjoying it. It’s so close, I can feel it!

Milestones for the upcoming month include installation of the trusses on the rest of the house, building out dormers, decks, and patios, and installing the roof. The actual, factual roof! I’m so excited for our project to start looking like the home we’ve dreamed of, and I think the installation of the roof will be a huge part of that. And we, the family, have an important to-do list for the next few weeks as well. We have to choose roofing shingles and exterior stone (which will probably also go on the fireplace), and figure out what paint colors to use on walls, ceilings, cabinetry, and trim. And we need to once and for all decide what material to put on those kitchen counters! It’s crunch time, so we can’t put off the decision any longer!

Nicole Balch

Get the Look: Front Porch

Written on March 18, 2014 at 9:50 pm , by

TREND: Modern updates for the front porch.

Does spring feel like it’s on its way to you yet? As March prepares to go out like a lamb, our thoughts often turn to sprucing up the outsides of our homes. Most houses, even the very traditional, look fantastic with a mix of modern and classic design updates like those on the front porch above. It’s an easy style to work with, and you can get a similar look with the items below. There are even two chairs to choose from: one that’s true to the inspiration image, and another to bring in even more modern style!

  1. Fisherman’s Indoor/Outdoor Pendant, Pottery Barn
  2. Threshold Lugano Potting Urn, Target
  3. Neutra House Numbers, Design Within Reach
  4. Braxton Outdoor Sconce, Restoration Hardware
  5. Sedona Chair with Cushion, Frontgate
  6. Penelope Lounge Chair, Room & Board
  7. Barcelona Floral Indoor/Outdoor Pillow, Pottery Barn


– Nicole Balch, Making it Lovely

Michael Wurm, Jr.

From My Home to Yours: Livable Color

Written on March 17, 2014 at 9:30 am , by

I love color. When it comes to making styling choices, I have always been drawn to bright, bold, and energetic colors. It just so happens that the April issue of BHG is all about color. I could hardly wait to get my hands on the issue and soak up all of the inspiration. Needless to say, it didn’t disappoint. I know that I’m ready to make a few color swaps in my own space.

One thing I’ve learned over the years is the difference between the bright, bold colors that attract me and color that I can actually live with. Because I work from home and spend a lot of time in my space, I tend to get bored easily with some of my bolder color choices. And since I can’t completely redecorate a room every year, I’ve learned a few tricks. First, I stick with a more neutral color palette for my walls. This allows me to readily swap out accessories, throw pillows, lamps, etc. anytime a space is feeling ho-hum or I want to change something up for the season. Second, when I’m investing in larger pieces like a dining room table or a sofa, I again try to go with a more neutral palette: grays, tans, whites, or wood tones.

Now, I know this may sound boring or the opposite of colorful, but if you take a look at a few of the rooms in my own home, you’ll see that my spaces are bursting with bold, yet beautifully livable color. Whether it’s a green cabinet, a teal lamp, or yellow pillows, these colors come to life against a neutral backdrop. I’m able to use the colors that I love without having them take over the whole room, causing me to quickly tire of them.

And although each room or space has its own unique palette, my style is pretty consistant throughout my home, This allows me to move pieces around when a certain area starts to feel stale or tired. To me, that is truly the definition of livable color. Anytime I’m out shopping for a new bold piece I try to think of two or three locations where it could work in my home. If it doesn’t look quite right in the place where I first envisioned using it, I have other options. As long as I love the piece and its color, I’m bound to find a spot for it in my house.

I thought it would be fun to pull together some neutral pieces and some colorful accessories to show you how you might quickly change up the color palette in your own home.

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 10 // 11 // 12 // 13

This is just an example to get you started and inspired. Since, color is such a personal thing, you ultimately need to decide which colors will make you the happiest in your home.

What new, yet livable colors are you loving for 2014?

Michael Wurm, Jr. – Inspired by Charm

BHG Guest Blogger

Spring Family Room Ideas

Written on March 14, 2014 at 9:00 am , by



Hi everyone! I am Jessica and our blog is called Four Generations One Roof. We are a crew of four generations all living together under one roof, and I happen to be the ring leader. Our blog is where we share our insane living arrangement (going on six years now living together), DIY home projects, renovations, tutorials, room makeovers and whatever else goes on in our home. There are nine of us total — and yes, it’s crazy that we all live under one roof — and so far, we have all survived! Ha.  I was thrilled when Better Homes and Gardens invited me to share our family room with you as well as fabulous ideas on how you can bring the much-anticipated SPRING into your own family room.





spring family room ideas

This year for spring, I decided to use coral and navy throw pillows along with a coordinated throw blanket to add pops of fun bright color to the room.

spring family room ideas

Pillows are the easiest and most economical way to add color to a room. Many times I will purchase fabric I love and cover old pillows. Don’t worry if you can’t sew; purchase some stitch witchery and iron the fabric together. You will be amazed at how you can change the look with some fun fabric and old pillow inserts. Below, I took an old piece of fabric and covered a canvas dump truck wall hanging that was my son’s when he was a toddler. Paired with a couple of candle stick holders, faux coral and a cute sign, you now have a springy themed vignette for little money.

spring family room ideas

It’s super easy to transform a room from season to season using just a few items.

 Pink flowers + pillows 

I love how they coordinated the pink colorful flowers with the pink throw pillow in both the above and below photo.


blue pattern pillows

What strikes me about this room is the tall greenery in the corner. Anytime you add fresh greens or flowers to a room, it instantly feels springy and fresh.

pink + blue 

 green + orange  

This room is one of my favorites. Chocolate brown and pink add such a huge impact to a room. This color scheme makes the room feel alive, happy and just what is needed after a long winter! You don’t need to have colorful and patterned furniture to achieve this look. You can purchase fabric and recover pillows, create fabric-covered wall art, or recover books and boxes for shelving displays.

Here is another example of layering framed artwork to create a spring-themed vignette. The mantel is simple yet adds a contrast in color as well as ties in the orange color from the throw pillows and blanket.

layered mantel spring family room ideas


There are so many ways to add a spring element to your family room, these are just a few of the easiest and most economical. Of course, you can break out the paint brushes and get busy adding a fresh new paint color to your room. I’m all about that, but for now our family room is sporting some fun new throw pillows, DIY wall art and a colorful throw blanket. Thank you so much, Better Homes Gardens, for inviting me to spend time with your readers. It was fun!

Jen Jones

Organize With This: Black & White Storage!

Written on March 13, 2014 at 6:16 pm , by

There are endless reasons why black and white creates a winning combination.  Together they become a classic yet bold medley that continuously thrives within the home decor and fashion worlds.


{image sources: kitchen, bathroom, dress, hallway}


When it comes to selecting products for organizing, you can’t go wrong with this dynamic duo.  The classic combination will ensure the storage you are investing in remains timeless for years.  The best part is that black and white pairs beautifully with an endless variety of colors and patterns, so although your tastes may change, your storage doesn’t have to.

{ one / two / three / four / five / six / seven / eight / nine / ten / eleven / twelve }