Monthly Archive: January 2014

Jan 12

Shutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little Charm

So we love our house, but one of the main issues we have with it is that the outside looks a little dated.  Kelli and I have been on a mission since we’ve moved in to get the “curb appeal” to a better place.  The first thing that we did was replace the garage doors (still need to write this post.)
We’ve also done some landscaping, which was a lot more dangerous than we were expecting.  This leads to the shutter installation project.  We thought they would be a cheap and effective way to help add a little outside charm to this house that looked like it was slightly stuck in the 70’s.

Here’s a little before and after.


Shutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little CharmAfter

Shutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little CharmI (Eric) have fallen in love with Menards.  To me, it’s the perfect balance of price, quality, and selection.  And no, they [unfortunately] didn’t pay me to say that.  Maybe one day, sigh.  I believe it’s a midwest regional hardware store.  So you coastal people may not have the pleasure of doing your shopping there.

We put shutters on a total of three windows, meaning we had to get three sets of shutters.  We got them from Mendards for around $23 a piece.  We are very happy with the results of the shutter installation. Plus, we did it all for under $75 and about an hour installation time. Score!

Shutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little Charm


The tools I used to do the shutter installation were:

  • Drill
  • 1/4” drill bit
  • Multi-tool(pictured below)
  • Tape measure
  • rubber mallet

In the above picture, I went ahead and laid everything out so I knew what I was getting into.

Below, we have board and batten siding, so to make sure the shutter was flush with the window I had to use my multi-tool to cut about a 1 inch section to make this happen.


Shutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little CharmShutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little CharmShutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little CharmThe last step was to re-seal the seam that was left when I cut the piece of wood out.  I did this with a exterior caulk. Shutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little Charm

Now that the house was ready, I had to do a little prep work on the shutter, per the instructions that came with shutters.  I put a total of 4-1/4inch holes into each of the corners of each shutter.

After I got the holes in the shutter, I placed the shutter in it’s final resting place next to the window and drilled the same sized hole through the siding.  If you have brick or stone siding, this is where it could be a little tougher.  My assumption is that you would have to use a masonry bit rather than your typical wood bit.

Shutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little CharmThe last steps to the shutter installation is to hammer in the plastic spikes.  This is the easiest step of the entire process, as you have already completed all the prep work.

Shutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little Charm


Shutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little CharmAfter you know it, you’ve got shutters on your house!  Like I said earlier, the shutter installation only took about an hour.  I installed a total of 6 shutters throughout the whole project.

Shutter Installation: Adding an Extra Little CharmThis project was just another step on the way to a more charming exterior.  There are so many things we love about this house.  We can now add shutters to that same list!!  Next stop, I rip out and replace of the front porch and that sweet ramp to the bottom left of the picture.

Until next time. Build On!


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Jan 10

Fireside Five on Friday

Happy Friday, friends! How do weeks go by so fast? I just don’t understand. Regardless, I’m happy it’s almost the weekend! I’m working from home today and decided to keep Miss Charlotte home with me. She’s a great assistant 🙂 My new job (private practice) is pretty amazing in that I don’t have to actually be IN the office to be working, unless I’m seeing a client. There’s a lot of paperwork and report writing involved in therapy, so I can do that all from the comfort of my own home! It’s truly a blessing, and I’m grateful every day that I made this transition (and that my husband has been 100% supportive of it). Now, on to 5 things from this week…

As usual, I’m linking up with other Friday bloggers. Click the logo below to read other Friday posts!

Fireside Five on Friday

ONE– She is adorable! That’s all.
(Excuse the blurry iphone picture)Fireside Five on FridayTWO– Am I the only one with ALL of my Christmas things still up….AND unopened presents under the tree??? I just haven’t found it in me to be done with Christmas yet. It’ll probably happen this weekend, but until then I’m going to enjoy every bit of the decorations! Christmas comes and goes way too fast in my opinion.Fireside Five on Friday

THREE– I have finally started doing some DIY projects around the house. With the new baby, projects have kind of been on hold. I don’t know if it’s just me, but getting a routine down and feeling like I have some time for myself has taken a while (but I’m perfectly OK with that as a first time mama). It feels good to get back into the things I enjoy! This is just some simple burlap garland I made for the empty windowpane we just hung. Fireside Five on FridayFOUR– Just look at these boots! My Aunt Ann got these for Charlotte before she was born. She finally fits in them, therefore she may or may not be wearing them every day. Who doesn’t love a pair of furry leopard print boots? Do they make them in adult sizes?!? (Sidenote- there’s nothing cuter than a baby in jeggings. I’m just sayin’)Fireside Five on Friday Fireside Five on FridayFIVE– “Sleep Training” has officially begun in our house. At Charley’s 4 month appointment, our pediatrician recommended that we read Kim West’s book. He used this method with his 4 kids and was successful. We started that very night, and I have to say, it’s going well! She’s not sleeping through the night by any means…and we don’t expect that, but she is sleeping for longer periods of time and going longer between feedings than ever before. Charlotte truly was getting such little sleep at night because of her frequent wakings, that she was fussy and overtired all day long! I can already see a difference in her demeanor, which is the real reason we’re doing this! It doesn’t hurt that Mom and Dad are also getting more sleep 🙂 The more sleep at night has allowed her to take better naps during the day as well and she’s learning to self-soothe, which is a life skill she had to learn. SO, all in all, we’re happy with the results and would recommend this to any parent needing some help in the sleep department!Fireside Five on Friday Enjoy your weekend!

Jan 06

4 Months and Cuter Than Ever!

Baby Charlotte is growing like a weed! I can’t believe she’s already 4 months today. 4 Months and Cuter Than Ever! 4 Months and Cuter Than Ever!Her sleep is getting a bit better, which we are so grateful for….although she is nowhere close to sleeping through the night. Like I’ve said before, we’re just doing lots of extra bonding in the night 🙂 We’re going to try sleep training to see if that works! She is super animated during the day though, and is finding her voice! She makes all kinds of noises and is learning to entertain herself. She smiles like crazy and is even giggling! It is seriously the best. She has been rolling from front to back for a month or longer now, but she’s starting to roll from back to front. She gets about halfway there and stops. She’ll be there in no time! She’s also a drooling machine, but the pediatrician confirmed today that she’s not teething quite yet. Whew! I don’t think we’re quite ready for that stage. 4 Months and Cuter Than Ever!Weight- 13.4 lbs

Length- 24.61 in

4 Months and Cuter Than Ever!Charley girl, we love you SOOOOO much!

Jan 03

Fireside Five on Friday

Happy Friday, everyone! It’s been a while since I’ve done a Friday post. It feels good to be back. Now that the hustle bustle of Christmas is over, I have found a little free time to do projects like old times. So, here we go!


I’m linking up with some other bloggers- click on the logo below to see other 5 on Friday posts!


Fireside Five on Friday

ONE– 2013 has come and gone, and I have to just say….2013 will always hold the best memories of my whole life. It’s been quite a year! We rang in the new year with our friends Michelle and Thayne and their baby, Charlotte! She is 5 weeks younger than our Charlotte. We stood the girls up in front of each other and they just stared at one another. I think that’s baby code for “we are besties”. It was the perfect way to spend the holiday with a new baby! Fireside Five on Friday Fireside Five on FridayTWO– Just one big, happy family. While Charley had some Tummy Time on Dad, Barkley took a rest on his neck. That’s normal, right?Fireside Five on FridayTHREE– Eric and I painted this tree in our basement hallway. We love how it turned out. Eric had the idea- we will add frames on the branches with pictures of our family in them. We’re hoping to do a little tutorial on the blog to show how it came together. Fireside Five on FridayFOUR– We enjoyed a delicious lunch at Fogo De Chao on the plaza this week while Eric had the day off. If you haven’t ever been, you should definitely go. It’s a Brazilian Steakhouse, which means more delicious food than you can wrap your head (or stomach) around. My BFF Jena babysat Charlotte for us, which was AMAZING of her!Fireside Five on Friday FIVE– Unswaddled sleeping=miracle. Miss Charlotte doesn’t do a whole lot of sleeping, but when she does, she’s usually swaddled. Lately, I’ve been trying to wean her off the swaddle when she naps. Some days it’s successful, others not so much. Any tips from mamas on how to wean the babe off the swaddle?Fireside Five on FridayHope you all have a great weeekend!