Category Archives: Uncategorized

HAPPY 19TH BIRTHDAY PHOEBE HOLIDAY!

 

Happy 19th Birthday to the one and only Phoebe Holiday.

The girl of my dreams .

The girl I want to be when I grow up.

I love you MORE.

Period.

Guys, time flies. Do not waste a minute. Life is precious! and so is my Girl!!!

xo

Leslie

MY ZEBRA OBSESSION!

I AM OBSESSED WITH ZEBRAS!!!!

get ready to see some ZEBRA paintings!

WILLOW the Zebra – for sale on Leslidevito.com

DID YOU KNOW – That there are 3 species of ZEBRAS?

african wildlife foundation

THE STRIPES – I just learned that contrary to what I had always believed – the Zebra stripes are NOT for camouflage  – nope, instead they are ALTERNATE colors to keep them cool!!! A zebra’s stripy coat is thought to disperse more than 70 per cent of incoming heat, preventing the animal from overheating in the African sun. AND the further SOUTH  a Zebra lives in the AFRICAN plains, the farther apart their stripes are!!!! COOL!!! LITERALLY!

WILDLIFE FOUNDATION

ZEBRA DECOR IS “on trend” but I think it kind of always is….at least for me!

ZEBRAS BY SCALAMANDRE – FABRIC AND WALLPAPER COME SIN MANY WONDERFUL COLORS

JONATHAN ADLER SHARES MY LOVE FOR ZEBRAS

MY FAVORITE PILLOW SOURCE – THE PILLOW COLLECTION HAS SO MANY AWESOME ZEBRA PILLOWS!!!!

 AS With ALL my “LOVES”, when it comes to decor and accessories –  I must contain myself!! There is a fine line between too much ZEBRA and just the right amount to add some character and whimsy to a room. I would not want to be known as “that lady with  ‘Zebra House'”!!!!

one last FUN FACT ABOUT ZEBRAS THAT MAKES ME LOVE THEM EVEN MORE!

ZEBRAS are very social. They travel in groups

ZEBRAS TRAVEL IN GROUPS FOR THEIR WHOLE LIVES – AWF

THEY FORM relationships, They travel in large groups called herds for social reasons and for safety – predators have a hard time figuring out what is what among all those stripes!!! They have a little sense of humor I think! And apparently, they will defend a threatened member of heir herd against a predator and can do some pretty fierce damage with their KICKS!!!

DO NOT make a ZEBRA mad!

**************************************

Have a Great weekend !

Phoebe has a Birthday and I will be heading down to her college spend it with her….

….can you say HAPPY!!!!

ME AND MY GIRL

Leslie

ONE ROOM CHALLENGE WEEK 4 – NOTE TO SELF – IF YOU SEE IT – BUY IT!

ONE ROOM CHALLENGE WEEK 4 UPDATE

Lets take stock of WHAT IS DONE –

IF YOU WOULD LIKE A RE-CAP, VISIT WEEK 1, 2,

  1.  FURNITURE –

(2 SOFAS,  3 CHAIRS,  1- CONSOLE,  1- SOFA TABLE,  1 COFFEE TABLE,  3 END TABLES   AND 2 OTTOMANS)  – ARE PURCHASED AND/OR ORDERED – check

  1. THE RUG IS IN – check

    DASH AND ALBERT CATS PAW RUG

  2. EXISTING SECTIONAL IS OUT – check  – I WAS WORRIED THAT IT WOULD BE A MONSTROUS THING TO DEAL WITH BUT with THE FLIP OF A LEVER – THEY  ESSENTIALLY BECAME INDIVIDUAL CHAIRS! AND THE MOVING GUYS CARRIED THEM OUT ONE BY ONE! THE ROOM INSTANTLY BECAME HUGE!!!

4. ART IS ORDERED  – CHECK

I AM DOING A LARGE “STATEMENT” PIECE AND THESE WERE INSPIRATION!

5. I FOUND A COFFEE TABLE!!!! CHECK DOUBLE CHECK!

I AM  a tad superstitious and am going to hold off showing you any the Art and furniture and save them for the BIG REVEAL on MAY 11  – BUT I have to show you the coffee table I found!

I wanted something ROUND like this…but NOT this…

ROUND COFFEE TABLE

because the home is so new , the coffee table is an excellent opportunity to bring some character and age and I was looking for a kind of rustic-ish one but NOT painted but then I kind of wanted some color –  like maybe a round coffee table made out of reclaimed wood…

..and GUESS WHAT –

I FOUND A ROUND COFFEE TABLE MADE OUT OF RECLAIMED WOOD!!!!

ON ONE OF MY FIRST SHOPPING trips out I found the COFFEE TABLE of my DREAMS….AND WHAT DO I DO? – I don’t buy it. BECAUSE I had just started I thought –  “Well, if this is one of the first ones I found then maybe there is one even better!” .

WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME!!!!!

 …..after looking at approximately 400 more until my eyes crossed I realized that i HAD SEEN THE perfect ONE and THEN went into panic mode – worried that I may have missed out on THE PERFECT ONE …AND  of course —-I KNEW they only had one in stock!

 I went back to the perfect coffee table store and looked and looked but, sadly…it was GONE…I was kicking my self and I almost cried so before I made a fool of myself I was heading out the door and the owner of the store said,

“Can I help you?”

and I said “Oh, no (sniff, sniff)  Well, I had my eye on a coffee table…but it looks like you sold it..”

and he said “Can you describe it?”

and I did and he said, pointing to the back of the store..”We just rearranged…Is that the one?”

AND IT WAS THE ONE!!!!!! AND I GOT IT and all is right with the world!!!!

I decided to take it to the house to make sure it looked right with he DASH AND ALBERT CATS PAW RUG and I have to say!

I LOVE IT.

and so do my little friends!!!!!! xoxo

so – that is the Short and sweet for today…this is the  point where there is a lot of finger crossing, schedule coordinating, praying for sunshine and hoping for perfect timing!!!

ALL the furniture is going to be delivered within one 4 day period…which means I will be at their home A LOT…

I Cant believe there are just two more weeks left in the ONE ROOM CHALLENGE …and really if you think about it – just ONE more week because the last week is the REVEAL!!!!!

Even harder to believe than that is that next week is MAY and two weeks from now all of my KIDS will be home for the summer!!!!

TATE PHOEBE AND COOPER – MY THREE AMIGOS

MY heart gets lighter by the minute!!!!!!

I AM COUNTING THE DAYS! UNTIL MAY 10

MAKE SURE TO CHECK OUT THE OTHER ONE ROOM CHALLENGE DESIGN PARTICIPANTS AND GUEST PARTICIPANTS! THERE ARE AMAZING TRANSFORMATIONS HAPPENING.

HERE ARE THEIR LINKS!!

  Centsational Girl | Chris Loves Julia | Christine Dovey | Dwell With Dignity | The English Room | Glitter Guide | House of Brinson | House Updated  | J+J Design Group | Lark & Linen | Abby Manchesky |Nesting Place | Old Brand New | Old Home Love | The Pink Pagoda | Rambling Renovators |Erica Reitman | Sketch 42 | Suburban B’s | Erin Williamson  Media Partner House Beautiful | TM by CIH

THANKS FOR CHECKING IN!

Leslie

A COW, A BEAR, A GIRAFFE AND AN ABSTRACT – NEW PAINTINGS!!!

I HAVE SOME NEW PAINTINGS TO SHARE WITH YOU!

VIOLET THE GIRAFFE – 20″ X 20″

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Leslie

SHAKING THE MONDAY BLUES – 10 WAYS I GET OUT OF A FUNK

It is rainy and gloomy here today . And I am in a bit of a funk .

Ever happen to you?

Nothing in particular …just feel BLAH.

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Leslie

ONE ROOM CHALLENGE GUEST PARTICIPANT – WEEK THREE – MY LAMP OBSESSION

w e l c o m e   t o

I have never taken a professional decorating course. But I have been “a student of decorating” since I was a very little girl. I would always wonder…”Why does this persons house look so much better than that persons’ house?” and I came to the conclusion  this will be in the book...entitled..”Useless and not so useless stuff that I have learned along the way…” .that There are, in my opinion , TWO make or break elements when it comes to decorating – ART and LIGHTING. And sometimes the LIGHTING is ON the ART…but These two things can transform and elevate a space…give it personality and bring YOU into the space if that makes sense…and  take it to the next level.

Think of any room that has turned your head, stopped you in your tracks, made you weak at the knees…and I bet that room had Great lighting and incredible ART.

 

I also have a wallpaper obsession, paint color obsession and can get giddy taking about sideboards…I have a lot of friends.

This week I am going to focus on the LIGHTING and LAMPS and NEXT week we are going to talk about one of my favorite things in the world – ART.

ROBERT ABBEY DOUBLE GOURD LAMPS IN PINK

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Leslie

GUESS WHAT IS THE MOST POPULAR COLOR…?

 CAN YOU guess what the most popular color is?

Now, I come by this “statistic” not scientifically –  but by combing my STATS page …and THIS COLOR is googled and looked at more on PINTEREST than any other color…

IS IT GRAY?

Benjamin Moore GRAYS = MORE HERE HERE HERE AND HERE 

NOPE?

IS IT WHITE?

BENJMAIN MOORE WHITES more whites HERE, HERE, HERE AND HERE HERE

CLOSE..YOU DO LOVE WHITE, BUT THIS IS NOT THE MOST SEARCHED….

IS IT BLUE…?

BENJAMIN MOORE BLUES = MORE BLUES HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE AND HERE HERE

YOU DO LOVE BLUE BUT THERE IS ONE COLOR YOU GOOGLE MORE…!

YOUR FAVORITE COLOR…the one you wonder about and google and scour Pinterest for is:

YELLOW!!!

9 of the 10 most popular Benjamin Moore Yellows: Concord Ivory, desert Tan, Hemplewhite Ivory, Mannequin Cream, Montgomery White, Philadelphia White, Rich Cream, Weston Flax, Windham Cream.

BENJAMIN MOORE – ANTIQUE LACE, CORINTHIAN WHITE, CREAMY WHITE, HONEY HARBOR, MAN ON THE MOON, MILKYWAY, PALACE WHITE, SUGAR COOKIE AND WINDHAM CREAM SEE MORE HERE  HERE AND HERE

YELLOW is a color that , when does right, transforms a space and brings such a happy warm feeling to a room…but when done wrong…can really be a bummer!

Lets look at yellow done RIGHT!!!

YELLOW AND BLUE

BETTER HOMES AND GARDENS

WINDHAM CREAM —-ONE OF MY FAVOITE YELLOWS – NOT CALLED YELLOW!!!!

YELLOW AND BLACK

Hawthorne Yellow Front door from Pinterest

HOMEDIT

PALE YELLOW BATHROOM

FROSTED LEMON A SORT OF FAIRY TALE

REHABITAT INTERIORS

MIX AND CHIC

Elle Decor October 2014 PHOTO Simon Upton

HAPPY BRIGHT YELLOW LIVING ROOM OF KIM BACHMAN ON ONE KINGS LANE

THOMAS JEFFERSON’S MONTICELLO – THE DINING ROOMS WALL WERE REPAINTED “CHROME YELLOW” IN 2010.

PROJECT NURSERY

HEMPLEWHITE IVORY

I LOVE yellow. When we first moved here, every major space in this house was painted a Laura Ashley Color called “COWSLIP”…and I thought I would never ever change it.

LIVING ROOM – LAURA ASHLEY COWSLIP

MASTER BEDROOM – 2004 – PAINTED LAURA ASHLEY – COWSLIP

But, of course, I did. And then I changed that color..and changed that color and now I may change that color BACK TO YELLOW!!! We shall see!

Do you have a favorite yellow? One that is your tried and true? Do you find yellow easy or tough to work with?

Thanks for reading…Tune in Thursday of my One Room Challenge week 3 update! Things are rolling along and I can’t wait to share it with you!

XO

Leslie

MAXIMIZE THOSE FIRST 45 SECONDS!!! MAKING YOUR HOME AS ATTRACTIVE AS POSSIBLE TO BUYERS!

I have heard it said that it take 45 seconds for a prospective buyer to either FALL in LOVE or FALL IN HATE with a house…and after that – it is difficult to change their minds either way – no matter what they see.

NOW THAT OUR HOUSE HAS BEEN ON THE MARKET FOR A YEAR…I have had ample time to reflect and weigh the varying reasons why prospective buyers get turned off by a house. Some things are what they are – like Location and Age and little can be done to change those things. But there are things that can be addressed and  it ASTOUNDS ME how often I will look at a house and some of these things have not been tended too. It really makes me wonder what kind of advice realtors are giving home sellers, if any..

 

HERE ARE 10 WAYS TO MAXIMIZE THOSE FIRST 45 SECONDS AND MAKE YOUR HOME AS ATTRACTIVE AS POSSIBLE TO PROSPECTIVE BUYERS

  1. YOUR PETS
BEAn- hard to believe but not everyone thinks he is a cute as i do!

I love animals but not everyone else does and some people have allergies and/or small children that get frightened by dogs. When possible it is always best to have pets, especially dogs, crated or better yet, not there. This is easier said than done…people work, realtors arrive early and sometimes it is impossible to corral all the dogs and get them tucked away. Generally speaking cats hide anyway…and if I tried to put one of our cats in a crate, he would make such a ruckus that the buyers would HATE THAT more…but I do try to move all the litter boxes out of site….Unless I am in a mood and don’t want my house to sell – then I leave then out and forget to scoop the poo.

2. SMELLY HOMES

Nobody wants to walk into a house that they are considering buying and have it welcome them with a stink handshake. Last nights dinner. The wet dog. A mildewed carpet. It is just a big fat negative first impression. Smells make the buyer wonder how much they DON’T see.

There are some great tactics for managing odors and the one that has changed my life is the DIFFUSER. there are hundreds on the market…but this everyone is my favorite – as well as being one of the lowest priced. My favorite essential oil combo is 1/2 Rosemary and 1/2 Mint. A diffuser is so much safer and I find them better smelling than candles…and I can safely leave them on when I leave the house!!!! I discovered them last fall and gave them to everyone for Christmas.

BONUS for College kids – Most dorms do not allow candles but will allow a diffuser and my kids love them!

EVERYONE DIFFUSER – THIS ONE IS SO EASY TO FILL AND WORKS LIKE A CHARM!!!

3. MESSY HOMES

MY MESS OF A DESK

After foul odors – there is no bigger turn-off to a prospective buyer than walking into a messy, sloppy house. Piles of clothes and dishes in the sink may not bother you…but they make it hard for the prospective buyer to see beyond and notice the GOOD things about your house. One thing that has helped me stay on top of the messes is that I have big baskets situated all over the house where I stash the blankets, hide the dog toys and put away the laundry. Maybe the messes won’t stop a sale but I think a tidy home shows better.

4. DIRTY HOMES

a CLEAN BATHROOM WILL SHOW BETTER EVERY TIME!

COMPLETE common sense, a clean house is going to show better. I keep wipes under each bathroom cabinet for quick wipe downs and always do a quick vacuüm and mop if necessary before a showing. Some days are much harder like, Mondays after the weekend when everyone is home LIVING and LOVING the place and so I have told my realtor no showings on Mondays – to give me a chance to catch up!!

5. SHABBY YARD

Palatial gardens are not necessary but a clean freshly mowed lawn and tidy landscaping, even if there is not much to landscape –  just shows better. Sometimes an open clear yard can even get a buyer excited about the possibilities at hand but  Lawns and shrubbery that look  raggy and untended like no one lives there – is a turn off…

Tim Barber Limited – I LOVE this – and I will take that dog with the house !

6. DARK HOMES

People love light. Sunshine streaming in a window. But some days are not as sunny as others and it helps to have lots of light – via table lamps, pendants and ceiling light fixtures to show off your space!  Keep extra bulbs on hand. Rooms just look better when they are well-lit!

  my OLD COUNTRY HOUSE LIVING ROOM

7. CRAZY BRIGHT WALL COLORS AND WILD WALLPAPER

I love wallpaper and I love color, but what I don’t want is to look at a house and think “ugh first thing we gotta do is get all that dreadful dated faded ugly wallpaper down!” Beautiful wallpaper is a bonus though.

Now, if I am looking at an old house that needs a complete update that is one thing, and the need for the update will likely be reflected in the pricing, but if I am looking at “move in ready” home –  it is more appealing if the colors flow and make sense and if there is wallpaper that it be current and enhances the look and feel of the house.

JULIA ROTHMAN DAYDREAM WALLPAPER IN BEACON HILL TOWNHOUSE – BOSTON MAGAZINE – This is one of my favorite wallpapers and I would jump at a chance to have  it in my walls!!!!oh wait ! I do!

8. JUST TOO MUCH STUFF

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing – MARIE KONDO

Whether you have read Marie Kondo’s book -“The Life changing magic of tidying up” or not…it is a widely known fact that the less STUFF you have cluttering up your house and distracting buyers – the BETTER. We actually rented a storage shed when we first put our house on the market – and the more I get rid of the happier I am! I continue to purge and get rid of things that are just taking up space and I love the freedom and lightness..and our house looks bigger and brighter!!!

9. OLD CARPETING 

Carpet in general is a IFFY thing…IF it is good looking and IF it is fresh and new and of a current style – (like the carpet pictured above) that can be a PLUS – but IF is is old, dated, dirty, worn, stained  carpet that s JUST not good- EVER. If your floors need to be carpeted and your carpet has seen better days then it may be worth considering investing is some new neutral carpet to improve the overall look and improve the possibility of a sale. You can even put down paper runners if they need be to protected from the high traffic  or you can ask people to take off their shoes.

10. YOU

ME AND MY MILLENNIALS

Buyers need to feel like YOUR HOUSE  could be THEIR HOME. And you might be the nicest person in the world with the cutest kids…but that will not help buyers bond with your home. At the advice of our realtor we  thinned out the Family Photo gallery walls but I did not remove all evidence that a family lives here because that would just be silly. BUT YOU/I in person – definitely need to not be there…that just makes it hard for the buyer.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Selling your home is just a big fat pain. But it is a necessary pain if you need to move so it is wise to take steps to ease the process. Our home is doubt difficult because old homes are not what people want these days…but someone out there LOVES old houses like I do and hopefully will find their way here…and if not…we will get a few more years here…and there are a million worse things I can think of than a few more years in My Old Country House!!!!

If you have any other TIPS for improving those first 45 seconds please share them with us!

Thanks for reading!!!

XO

Leslie

DAY 65 – DOG-A-DAY – MEET OLLIE – THE “MAYOR OF ALL DOGS”

“OLLIE”

is a VERY

SPECIAL GUY.

When my husband saw me painting his portrait, he said ,

“WOW – he looks like..like, the MAYOR of ALL Dogs.”

OLLIE- THE MAYOR

OLLIE WITH HIS SIBLINGS AND COUSINS!!!

OLLIE WAS A RESCUE. His story is one with a happy ending but a rotten beginning. He was discovered along the roadside…an emaciated 30 pounds, clearly he had run away and showed evidence of abuse. There were marks from…what looked like to have been a chain around his neck.

OLLIE AT 30 LBS.

Fortunately the perfect family adopted OLLIE. They are a family Dog lovers and healers. And they Loved and nursed him back to health. And 80 pounds!

OLLIE is a sweet gentle dog but does not like men with beards. He is not aggressive but his Momma says she has no doubt he would give his life for his family if he had to.

Ollie’s Momma told me a chilling story that demonstrates how fiercely protective he is of his family.

One Saturday, their teenage daughter was home alone while the rest of the family was running various weekend errands. There was a knock on the door, and because the family had just left, the daughter thought that it was her sister coming back to get something she forgot , and opened the door right up. At the door was a scruffy , but friendly enough man … and in the driveway was a white van. The man said he had just done some odd jobs in the neighborhood and could not figure out how to leave the subdivision. The daughter gave him verbal directions and went to shut the door, the man began to reach in the door and said ” could she come outside and “show” him”. OUT OF NOWHERE OLLIE Burst onto the scene and straddled the door on his hind legs, growling and snarling and slobbering like the daughter had NEVER seen…The man jumped back and the daughter slammed the door. The police said that Ollie may have saved her life!!!

FOR SOME REASON, THIS PHOTO REMINDS ME OF THE STORY OF “FERDINAND THE BULL”…SUCH A SWEET GENTLE GIANT.

I love all dogs…and I have lived with dozens of dogs in my lifetime…enough to know that every once in a while, a dog comes along that seems to have been sent on a mission..a mission to teach us humans something. And I believe that sweet Mayor Ollie was sent to teach resilience and patience and unconditional love to all who are blessed to know him.

OLLIE AND HIS BFF’S

THANK YOU FOR SHARING OLLIE WITH ME!!!

Leslie

ONE ROOM CHALLENGE GUEST PARTICIPANT- WEEK TWO

TODAY, April 12,  is the Anniversary of when we moved into this house – 13 years ago…

with a 3, 5 and 7 year old!!! A lifetime ago…sigh….

The kids in the driveway 2004 – babies

Things are Rolling here. Busy busy am I!!!! When I write it all down it seems so easy and carefree…but hours and hours have gone into each decision….multiple trips to and fro ……weighing factors like safety and comfort and always keeping in mind that there will be little ones living in this room. I love it all!!!

The major pieces have been ordered and NOW HONIG IN all the fun details…

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