Around the world and back

Hey guys,

I wanted to share with you a neat little idea I had for an activity that I could do with my boys and then use it as wall art for our house. I am also confident that this activity would strike up a conversation with our guests when they visit our home.

One of the many things that my husband and I share is our love for traveling. When we first started dated, we seriously listed out all the countries we have visited to determine who has travelled more between the two. LOL (we were such kids then). We both have done our fair share of independent traveling but have also taken some amazing and unforgettable trips together such as Greece, Italy and Iceland. Traveling is something we are both passionate about and plan to continue doing with our children. Having said that, if you’re a parent, you’ll know that traveling with children definitely has its challenges, from flight durations to time change, nap/sleep schedule, routine…the list goes on. As a result, we have definitely limited our traveling over the past 5 years. Both my boys have been on numerous plane rides, but for the most part, we try to keep our destinations within 3 hours of flying (with a few exceptions). Some of the places they have been to are: Dominican Republic, Toronto, Bahamas, Lake Louise, Seattle, and California.

My oldest child is 5 now and the youngest is turning 3 in a few weeks. For the first time, both my husband and I feel like we are ready to take on bigger adventures with them. This summer our family will be visiting Lisbon and the Algarve in Portugal for 2 weeks. While I am super excited about this trip, I am definitely nervous about it and no doubt, the stress level will be at its peak closer to the date.

With this trip and future trips in mind, I wanted to come up with something I could do with my boys to document the magical memories I plan on creating with them (yes, being SUPER optimistic here). I purchased a scratch map of the world online. Check out this one similar to the one I purchased.  This one from Walmart and this one from Etsy both seem like great options as well.

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Every country we visit, the boys can scratch that country off on the map to show where we have visited collectively as a family. I got the map framed at Hobby Lobby and now it is currently hanging in my office/dining room. Right next to it, I hung a Metal mesh grid panel. After each trip, I would let the boys select a few photos from our trip that they could print using our polaroid printer.   They can then hang it on the grid using bullnose clips or mini clothes hangers. How cute is that? To add a little dimension and some fun to it, I wrapped a fairy string light that I picked up from Target around the metal panel. I want to make sure the photos are visible so lighting was necessary.

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I love that this is something we could do together as a family for many years to come. It provides an opportunity for us to bond and reflect on our experiences and most memorable moments from our trip. Another thing I absolutely love about this idea is that a map is a pretty generic/standard piece of art but this is so personal and really reflects who we are as a family. If you know me and my style, you’ll know that I am a fan of making your home reflect you, your lifestyle and this is just that!

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Now if you are looking to do something similar to this and not wanting to use a scratch map, you could also glue a map to a cork board sheet, get it framed (optional) and then pin the areas you have visited. I had a client  once who collected pins from every city/country he visited and used it to pin his map.

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Now all we need to do is start traveling and fill our wall with amazing memories! If you do end up doing something similar, I would love to see it, so please feel free to email me at xomyhome@gmail.com to share your creation and memories. Thanks for following along guys!

 

XO,

 

Kim

 

Styling one room for multiple purposes

Although I currently reside in Florida where there is no shortage of space and large homes, I spent most of my life in Toronto, where square footage comes at a premium price tag. Designing a home in the city is often not just for the esthetics but each square foot needs to be accounted for to maximize functionality.

An effective way to create a multi-purpose room is to combine a frequently used room with an infrequently used room. A perfect example of this is combining a guest bedroom with an office space. Since guest bedrooms are typically only occupied when you have overnight guests, it makes sense to convert it into an office space for daily use if space is limited.

In this 1700 square foot home, 2 office spaces were needed.  Immediately the guest bedroom was turned into an office for dad as he needed a bit more privacy. I then converted the dining room into a beautiful office space for mom who was fine with having her work space in the common area. The dining room only gets used when they have guests over so it was perfect to function an office space as well.

For this room, we got this large beautiful wood dining table with live edge, that will be used daily as a desk, where she has ample space to lay out her work, computer and whatever else she needed. For storage, we used 3 metal bookcases and placed them behind the dining table. These bookcases were the key to the design. Traditional wooden bookcases would have visually occupied more space in this room but these metal shelves keeps it looking open and spacious. Boxes with filing folders were used to store important documents and baskets for extra storage.

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The pendant light offers great lighting for work but also creates ambience for conversations over dinner and a glass of wine.

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Also, the paint used in this room is actually chalkboard paint so you can actually jot down notes and brainstorm directly on the wall when you’re working and it can be easily washed off when you are done.

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When this family expects to have guests, they bring out the dining chairs from their breakfast table, add a floral centerpiece, set the table and voila, a dining room it becomes.  By utilizing the chairs from their breakfast table, they don’t have extra chairs laying around where storage and space is already limited.

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As you can see, this room now becomes a beautiful dining room for entertaining guests and having great conversations.  You can quickly swap some of the items in the bookshelves to make it more entertaining friendly, such as candles, flowers, bottles of wine and coffee table books.

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Once dinner is done, you clear the table and once again it becomes a fabulous workspace.

I hope this has given you some tips and ideas on how to create your own multi-purpose room.

XO,

Kim

 

Target is my Jam

Initially, our move to the US was only supposed to be for a short period of time, and by short, I mean 12 to 18 months.  We’re now approaching 4 years and still no signs of going back to Toronto. When we moved here, we sold our house and stored all of our belongings in my parents’ basement, thinking we would be back for it shortly. We packed 5 suitcases and flew down to Florida and started our new life.

When we started furnishing our apartment, my assumption was that we would be leaving most, if not all of the stuff behind by selling them or donating to charities when we return to Toronto. That meant I had to spend a lot of time surfing the Internet to look for budget-friendly yet stylish decor pieces.

Target quickly became my go to place for pretty much EVERYTHING! That is why I chose it for my first Weekly Fab Find. 

Target currently has many beautiful and chic pieces that would elevate any home decor but for this post, I will focus mainly on the Living room. Here are some of my favorite items:

Velvet is definitely trending this year and this deep blue Cologne Tufted Trace Arm sofa is absolutely gorgeous and will add a pop of color and sophistication to your living room. I currently have this pink accent chair in our master bedroom.  If you are looking to add a touch of femininity to a space, this definitely would be the chair for you.

I love the look of this faux fur chair as an accent piece in a living room or as an office chair. If you like the mid-century look, this bench would definitely be a nice touch to your entryway.

I am all about the mid century look so these Amherst Mid Century Modern square table and two-tone coffee table caught my eye immediately.

I currently have a similar table to this metal and wood coffee table that I purchased from West Elm for over three times the price of this one. If you like the mix of wood and metal look, then this and the Berwyn Round Coffee Table would be a great option for you.

I also have a similar tulip Saarinen end table that I presently use as night table in my master bedroom. This Mid-Century 23″ Round bevel edge and Tulip Base End table from Target does not have the marble surface which I personally think is easier for maintenance and still looks very delicate and beautiful. If you do prefer a marble top, then this gold Marlton end table would be a nice option for you.

If you are looking for something a little more unique and less delicate, these two end tables are a few of my favorites: Hourglass Accent table and Highland Honeycomb Barrel end table.

Can I just say that I absolutely LOVE the tripod floor lamp look and this one from Target is definitely a show stopper.  I love both the clear and black base. If you prefer a wood base then check out this Oak Wood Tripod Floor Lamp.

Since Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, I thought these oversized heart shape pillows would be fun to add to any space.

Above are some great throw pillow options as well.

These house bud vases are probably one of my favorite purchases from Chip and Joanna Gaine’s Hearth and Hand Collection that now sits on a shelf in our living room with some eucalyptus in them.  They also come in white. These lanterns are also great additions for inside or outside of your home. I currently use mine for our outdoor table decor. I literally have 5 of these Cedar Magnolia candles scatted throughout the house. It makes your house smell absolutely amazing.  This set of circle accent mirrors are always a great touch to every room.

Shop these Target items:

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XO,

Kim

* If you enjoyed this post, please leave me a comment below. I would love to hear your thoughts and comments.

Thanksgiving Tablescape

Thanksgiving 2017

This past Thanksgiving was the first Thanksgiving we spent in Florida since our relocation from Toronto. Every year Thanksgiving falls around my birthday weekend and for as long as I could remember, we have always travelled to celebrate my birthday. However this past year, we decided to travel the day after Thanksgiving and spent it with our friends in Tampa (Friendsgiving).

To celebrate our first American Thanksgiving, I decorated my entire table using mainly Chip and Joanna Gaine’s Hearth and Hand collection from Target, everything from candle holder to napkins, to napkins rings, flatware and lanterns.

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Details on items used:

Hearth and Hand Collection

Glass and Metal Taper Candle Holder – Brass

Artificial Cypress/Pine/Sage Stem Bundle 

Black Taper Candle

Cedar Magnolia Candle – I am obsessed with the scent of this candle

Small Black House Lantern

X Pattern Napkins

Gather Napkin Ring

Black Flatware

Other

Gold Table Runner

Gold Square Charger Plate

Crystal Wine Glass – I grabbed these from Home Goods last year but these wine glasses are pretty similar.

Square dinner set

XO,

Kim