A Little Before and After With Extra Curb Appeal

A Little Before and After With Extra Curb Appeal


disclosure:  This post is sponsored by National Hardware.

Don’t you love a pitiful before?

Especially one that has its picture taken on a dreary day when the sky is cloudy and the walls need power washing and the steps are sad and the door needs a little freshening up.

This is my office.

The gatehouse.

It’s seen one too many winter days.Continue reading

The Sound Of Fountain Music

The Sound Of Fountain Music


This post is sponsored by Aquascape.

How to Add a Water Feature To Your Yard

I’ve always wanted to have a fountain at the house.

I love the sound of water and it’s such a great addition to a patio and looks super fancy….

…but mostly so I could work it in conversation.

Things like, “What did you do today? Me?  Oh, I spent the morning curled up with a good book by my fountain.”

Or “Sorry I’m late.  I just couldn’t tear myself away from my fountain yesterday.”

And my favorite, “Let’s go out to dinner.  I was going to cook, but I lost track of time listening to fountain.”

Before I tell you where I got the fountain and the five point zero minutes it took me to install it….

….I want you to hear what it sounds like.

Here are a few sounds from my back yard to yours.
Continue reading

How to Get Hydrangea To Bloom

How to Get Hydrangea To Bloom

hydrangea mantel

I recently read about the most adventurous man in the world.

He planned and hoped and dreamed for years to climb the highest peaks on each continent and sail the seven seas.  He traveled the globe and sailed around the world and faced hardships and challenges and snow and ice and raging waters, but eventually he climbed that last mountain and sailed that last sea.

It is an incredible accomplishment.

One requiring great fortitude and extreme endurance.

I know.

I think I understand.

Because that’s exactly how I felt this week….

….when my hydrangea finally bloomed.Continue reading

Fall Home Tour 2015

Fall Home Tour 2015

I am so excited and honored to be part of Finding Home Farm’s fall tour today.

If you are stopping by from Jones Design Company, welcome.  

So nice to meet you.

Enjoy the tour.

fall home tour thistlewood

Have you ever had a day where your  to-do list stretches around the block?

You try and get it all done.


You try and try and try and try, but for every item that you check off, you add two more.

And somewhere…..in the middle of all that trying…..

….you have a brilliant idea. 🙂Continue reading

Simple Landscape Lighting Ideas

Simple Landscape Lighting Ideas


This post was written in partnership with Trex outdoor lighting.

landscape lighting suggestions

Eight years ago when we jumped and moved across America to the country it was because we wanted to hear the crickets chirping and smell fresh cut hay and follow winding country paths home….

….and see the stars.

And stars are wonderful.

And amazing.

And fill the night sky with twinkling joy.

But just between us….when I walked outside to those chirping crickets and smelled the hay and walked those winding paths, those stars twinkled over a beautiful farmhouse was just a big blur in the twilight.

Until now.

Now it’s lit up to perfection and we can check landscape lighting off our bucket list.

So if outdoor lighting is on your bucket list….

….here’s a few simple landscape lighting tips from our house to yours.Continue reading

4 Ways to Refresh Your Porch for Summer

4 Ways to Refresh Your Porch for Summer


To quote the Bangles…..who at one time I thought were the experts on all things heart-related:


“Close your eyes, give me your hand.

Do you feel my heart beating?

Do you feel the same?

Or am I only dreaming?

Is this burning…..an eternal flame?”




Is it socially acceptable to have a crush on your back porch?Continue reading

The Great Outdoors Linky Party

The Great Outdoors Linky Party


Is it considered so 1980 to sing “Celebration” ….as in “Celebrate…good times….come on.”

Are Kool and the Gang so 3.2 decades ago?

Are we just so over it all?




Not here at Thistlewood.

Not here with farm and the gang.

Not when we are partying like it’s summer 2012.



So you’ve seen this project.Continue reading