Casual Friday | Feelings on Moving in, My First Furniture Purchase, Favorite Mom Jeans and more!

June 7, 2019

We believe we should all love where we live.

We’re a couple of homebodies, working to uncover the home our home wants to be. And we’re so happy to have you here. 




We're Chris + Julia

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We closed on our old house and moved into our new house this week and that came with a lot of emotions and trials and triumphs. “Bittersweet” is a phrase that is thrown around a lot, and I’ve even said it myself many times–but this week was the first week I can honestly say I experienced what that felt like. So extremely happy and overjoyed to be in our new home–one that we see ourselves raising our girls in. But also so overwhelmingly sad to be closing a chapter that meant so much to us and moving away from the familiar. Not to say I’m not completely grateful to be moving forward, or to have found this home–it’s just that I’m also filled with gratitude for our last one and I think all of this emotions are warranted.

Fortunately, our girls are adjusting extremely well (Willow is getting there) despite the chaos and move away from their routine this week. The first day we moved in, we took time to set up their bedrooms (they each have their own room now and although we were nervous Faye wouldn’t be up for it, she is in heaven in her “queen room.” I called it her very own princess room (hers is the one with the pitched ceiling and large arched window)–she corrected me that it was a queen room because we got her a queen-sized bed. Haha! I took her to Target (which is now a mere 5 minutes away, instead of 40–guys, this is life changing!) and let her get this pretty starry nightlight and every night she can barely wait to settle in for sleep because she wants to be next to her nightlight.

Greta has taken after me. She has spent every minute of her days organizing her room and closet and feels very grown up with her space. She’s planning  a reading nook and asked for a bookcase and chair. She spread a rug over her really busy carpet and lined the whole wall with pillows. It’s heart warming really. We’d love to give them both the rooms we envision in our heads immediately, but now that we’re here, we see how happy they are and we know it’s best to not interrupt their lives anymore. We’re holding off on any renovations upstairs now since they all seem to be thriving in their current conditions. We brought Polly’s entire room with us and that alone settled her into her normal routine and sleep schedule–thankfully!

Other notes from this week!

• I’ve been in decision paralysis when it comes to purchasing any furniture for our new home. I just haven’t been able to pull the trigger on much. But! I’m happy to report, I bought these bar stools for our kitchen island and they are fantastic. Very sturdy and I love the adjustable height and classic style.

Email like a boss. 

• Did you catch the reveal of Jenny’s Evergreen kitchen on Juniper Home? This photo stopped me in my tracks. I am taking notes of everything from the styling, fresh sconces, mixed hardware, the tiled window bench, layered brackets–ugh! It’s all so good!

This Etsy Shop melted me into a puddle.

• There’s lots of dialogue in this instagram post about defining architectural home styles–specifically ours. There was a lot of suggestions to hashtag our home #cljcottage and some didn’t agree with the definition. There was also some pushback on the idea that we would like to channel a Tudor style through the renovation. I love that our community is passionate about all things home. You’re in the right place. I also really believe in listening to your home when designing and decorating it. If your home is a 1920s colonial, mid-century modern furniture might feel out of place–but it’s not against the law. If your home was built in the 80s, 90s or 2000s (which is the vast majority) and the style isn’t clear or it has no style (our last house) and you aren’t sure of the direction but it feelllls _______. You get to decide! Lean into that feeling and go for it! Fall in love with your home. In my mind, I can already see peeks of our new home 10 years from now and it excites me soooo much. We can’t wait to put our own modern spin on the cottage/tudor style.

This bedroom by Jake Alexander Arnold is a mood! (Future bedroom vibes for sure!)

Fork calligraphy. Here for it.

• Lastly, ALLLLLL I WANT TO WEAR IS MOM JEANS these days. I rounded up all my favorites below, at a bunch of different price points.

1. $118 | 2. $59 | 3. $98 | 4. $49 | 5. $115 | 6. $158 | 7. $98 | 8. $38 | 9. $115 | 10. $37 | 11. $98 | 12. $79 | 13. $34 | 14. $49 | 15. $105

Can’t wait to chat about the first space we’re tackling and dive into our new home more next week!

What do you think?

  1. Ashley says:

    I was looking back through this post to see how you supported your girls through the move. We might have a big move coming up and are concerned how our 7 year old is going to handle it… moving away from friends, family, the familiar… Any pointers in the conversations leading up to the move? Books? I would love to hear more of any guidance and tools you were able to use to help your girls!

    • Julia says:

      We were concerned but they actually did amazing and love the new house and their new school. Kids are resilient especially before they hit upper grades.

  2. Regan says:

    Love the stools! We had similar ones from Target but had to sell them. Be prepared for curious little hands to grab the VERY greasy threads underneath! Haha.

  3. Liz says:

    In the first picture, have you figured out what the clunky stone half pillars are for? With those, the floor, the very decorative brick arch on one wall, it almost looks like it was a covered or screened porch that was enclosed.

    I’m glad that you took care of your daughters’ rooms to make them feel part of the home. I’m looking forward to the changes that you will make.

    • Julia says:

      It was/is definitely an enclosed porch now. I think they have taken steps to make it a permanent part of the house, but it’s still drafty and cold in there.

  4. Kat says:

    Willow ???????? I’m wondering how she’ll manage the big open yard? Will you build an enclosed area for her? I guess that’s called a fence. ???? I hope she settles soon. I just love that sweet girl. So happy that you the girls are doing well with this big change!

  5. Kate says:

    Being five minutes from a Target, especially when you have kids, is amazing. We did the move two years ago from nothing to town and I adore it. Parks, bike trails, shops, and being able to run to the store for just two things right before dinner are awesome.

  6. Greta says:

    I just said this on your insta post, but I’ll say it again here. If the Sussexes live in Frogmore Cottage, then your home can definitely be called a cottage.

    Also, did your parents move as well? Or are they still in your old neighborhood?

  7. Jen Mc says:

    I can understand the pushback on the term ‘cottage’, by definition it means ‘a small simple home’…and well, your new house isn’t quite anything like that! But I think I understand the feel you are going for, and I think you want the house to *read* as intimate and simple/casual as a cottage…am I right?

    • Elaine says:

      “Cottage” more traditionally meant “a house used for part of the year.” The Breakers, all 20k square feet of it, is, by definition a cottage. Same with the rest of Newport. Size, etc. have little to do with a dwelling being a cottage.

      Regardless, no words really have meaning anymore. Which is how we have urban farmhouses, industrial farmhouses, and estates where the houses can be touched reaching out the windows. Whoever gave developers free use of the English language did us a horrible wrong.

  8. Christine says:

    So excited to see the transformation of this house. Would love to hear more about your house hunting process. I mean, how did you know this was THE ONE and how many houses did you have to look at before finding this one? I think I will have a huge decision paralysis when it comes to simply finding our next home (let alone the furniture that will go inside it)…so curious to know how you knew it was this one?

  9. Kate says:

    Call the house and the style what you thinks suits it best, I applaud you for taking on the challenge of a larger home. I think it’s hard to make a large footprint feel cozy, cohesive and interesting but you have the chops to make it happen for sure! Looking forward to seeing all your choices!

  10. kari says:

    I must say how impressed I am with what you have accomplished in the last few weeks in the middle of a huge move with little children! Every time a new post on instagram or your blog comes out I think, how do they do it? And do they know we’d be ok if they just slept? or unpacked another box? or just sat on the couch and relaxed! You are amazing! Enjoy your new beautiful home and that gorgeous property!

  11. Emily says:

    Back to a moody bedroom? ????????
    You do moody like no one else and I love it

  12. Jen says:

    How have your girls adjusted to both of you working full time at home? Were they ever whiny and clingy? I started working from home part-time several months ago, and they seem to hate me being on my computer at all…on the couch, in the office, doors open, doors closed. I’m not one to get frustrated, I just wonder…is this good for them? I’ve encouraged them to play, read, spend time outside, etc. I’ve let them sit and snuggle me while I work. I try to make it positive, but we’ve made little progress over the last several months, and they still beg for my attention, shut my laptop or hit my keyboard whenever I’m working. I know you’ve mentioned working from home and wanting to be there for your kids and be a good mom (I think you are!), I’m just wondering how you’ve navigated giving both your work and kids attention?

    • Julia says:

      Something that has REALLY helped us is hiring a nanny (my mom) to come to our house from 8:30-3:30 every day. There are still moments of clinginess but mostly she keeps them busy and occupied and happy during those hours so we can bust out as much work as possible. Sometimes I have to continue working after she leaves but Chris takes over until dinner and then I am off all screens from dinner to bedtime. I also take care to be really present in the mornings before work. It’s a balancing act for sure, working in an office with the door closed helps set boundaries. And when it’s open, they can come give me hugs!

      • Jen says:

        Thank you, your advice is much, much appreciated! It’s nice to see another mom walking this road; I know we’ll figure out what works for us, too. And good luck to you in your new home! I admire your courage and ambition in all you do. P.S. I think you could totally remake the house into a Tudor. And if not cottage, how about chalet? Chateau? Villa? Manor? Whatever it is, it feels very old-world and romantic!

    • Claire says:

      I know you weren’t looking for an open thread on this, but my husband began working from home and our four year old struggled with this a lot (I just want to show him my picture! Can he sit next to me while I eat my lunch?). We finally figured out what worked best was for him to be off limits. He goes into the room and stays there, no roaming to the kitchen for water, etc. It was more confusing for her that sometimes it was okay and sometimes it wasn’t. I don’t know if it’s feasible for you, but might be worth a try!

      • Jen says:

        Claire, thank you so much! That’s so thoughtful of you. That’s the kicker, too! I’m trying to decide if I really do want to be “off limits.” I like working from home, and I like being available for my kids, too. I guess setting boundaries is the key!

    • Ashley says:

      I’m going to jump in on this as well and just say that you shouldn’t forget you are still WORKING. It is hard sometimes for people to realize that even working from home is still working. If you were out of the house, you’d find childcare so you should do the same while working from home. It helps the kids to understand the boundaries and what’s happening. It shifts their mindset to, “Mommy’s working” rather than, “She’s home and not paying attention to me.” Don’t feel guilty about having to bring someone in for the time you need to be doing work. Your time is valuable too and when you’ve put in your time on the work, you feel more free to dedicate the time OUTSIDE of work all to the kiddos. Mom-ing is hard! Warmest regards you’re able to find that balance and not feel guilty!

      • Jen says:

        Ashley, thank you so much! You’re right, “she’s not paying attention to me,” is exactly how they feel! I’m trying to figure out the best way to set boundaries with love. I had a helper who moved away; it might be time to get one again! Thank you for the heartfelt encouragement and advice! I really appreciate it.

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We believe we should all love where we live.

We’re a couple of homebodies, working to uncover the home our home wants to be. And we’re so happy to have you here. 

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We recently painted our study a dark, moody green color. This is after we first painted it a muddy green, then repainted it a blue-gray. I guess what they say is true; third time’s a charm! The journey was worth it, though, because I’m so in love with this glossy green in contrast with the […]

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