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Children's Bathroom Reveal with Devine Color by Valspar at Target

Children's Bathroom Reveal with Devine Color by Valspar at Target



This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Devine Color. All opinions are 100% mine.



Anyone ready for another renovation reveal? 

Slowly but surely, this little house is coming together, room by room, and while I wish I could hurry things along, life with a newborn is keeping our pace slow and steady. Before we launch into the second round of major renovations (so long garage, hello master suite!), we decided to tackle the smallest project on our to do list: the children's/hall bath.

This space turned out to be much more of a challenge than I ever imagined it could be. Because of the layout of our house, this bathroom serves as the current children's bath, guest bath and the hall bath. I won't lie, having our guests use our pre-schooler's bathroom is not exactly ideal, so I made it my mission to create a bathroom that was able to welcome guests while also meeting the needs of my three year old son. 

Sadly, the bathroom has no source of natural light and is too small for multiple light fixtures, so it was incredibly dark and dingy, making it look more dated than it actually was. 

To keep things interesting, we also decided that the layout of this house and our budget did not allow for any major upgrades to the space - no new flooring, vanity, lighting, toilet or tub. We did have to replace the plastic shower surround because it was separated from the tub, leaving some of the dry wall exposed and vulnerable to rot and mold. 

So, with a very small budget in mind, I set out to:

brighten the space
maximize storage in any way possible
make the space appear larger
ensure guests were comfortable 
create a gender neutral kid's bath

Oh, and did I mention that the bathroom is tiny?

Like, teeny tiny.
5 1/2 feet long by 6 feet wide, tiny. 

In case you need a visual, one can sit on the toilet and touch the sink, door, tub and three of the four walls without stretching. It's honestly the smallest bathroom that I've ever seen a full sized tub squeezed into but that tub is the only one in the house currently, so we are grateful for it.
Here's what the space looked like on inspection day:


Notice the pedestal sink with no storage underneath, the dark brown walls and the small size...



And here's what it looks like now: 



I honestly love how bright and fresh the space looks - I really didn't know how much I could accomplish without completely ripping out the bulk of the bathroom and starting over, but I think we really met the challenges of this little space head on! 

So, here's what we did:

To make the space feel as large as possible, we ditched the dark brown color on the walls and went with fresh paint in a gorgeous shade of bright white, Devine Lightening, on the bead board and a soft shade of aqua, Devine Horizon, on the walls. Both colors are from the Devine Color + Target collection, which is exclusively available at Target (you can find it near the lightbulbs!). The paint is insanely easy to work with, applies and covers so well and comes in a huge variety of shades. Since we were working with two types of surfaces (dry wall and bead board), we really put our cans to the test, but I am in love with the results. 




In an attempt to maximize storage in any way that we could, we added two towel bars that hold all of our guest towels.I think Justin kinda thought I was nuts to fill that wall with towel bars but once they were in, he agreed that we needed the hanging space. I also snagged a bright yellow back of door hook for all of our currently-in-use bath towels (we prefer our bath towels to be animal themed around here!) from the dorm section of Target. I didn't want to put any permanent hooks in the door but the added hidden storage space behind the door has proven to be oh so needed. 


We kept the storage cabinet over the toilet and, while we replaced the hardware, we also kept the glass shelf over the sink. Thankfully, the mirror that was already in place is also a medicine cabinet, so that became home to all of the supplies we need on a regular basis and allows us to keep the shelf clear of tiny toddler toothbrushes in case we have a guest drop in. 

As I mentioned, we hadn't intended to replace any part of the shower/tub with the exception of the shower head but, unfortunately, the shower surround began to separate from the tub, creating a gap that allowed water to reach the dry wall behind the shower. Not good. 

Luckily, we found a gorgeous, inexpensive tile option that has the look of marble and added a high end feel to what was previously a dingy tub area. 


I was able to take advantage of the need for new tile and create an oversized shower niche for storage. Since the tiny bathroom is majorly lacking storage, I wanted a spot where I could stash as many bath products as possible and my contractor created the nook of my dreams. 


To make the space look more current, we replaced all of the hardware with brushed nickel fixtures that were in stock at our local hardware store. This was another element of the design that came about thanks to the need for new tile and I was happy to replace the old, handheld shower head and mismatched hardware for something more our style. 


When it comes to renovations, styling the space is absolutely my favorite part because you (finally) get to see all of your hard work come together. After choosing the shades of Devine Paint and seeing them on the walls, I knew where the color scheme was going but wasn't sure how I was going to add any sort of decor to such a small space. On one of my weekly daily Target runs, I swung through the home section and found a pair of super plush towels with just the perfect stripe to bring out the wall color. After that, I was off and running - I chose a mix of what I consider kid friendly and more sophisticated decor with the combo of the adorable "wash your hands" soap dispenser (from the Target kid's bath section!) and the geo patterned shower curtain. 

Obviously, matching the colors of my Devine Paints and the accessories from Target was the easiest ever because Target gets me, simple as that. The woven tray is also a Target find and you may recognize it! She used to hold court as my coffee cup holder on my bed, but I think she looks perfect as the focal point on the only open wall space. 


And that's all she wrote for this little project! 

What do you think? Isn't it amazing what an impact fresh paint and new hardware can make? Next up, we tackle the biggest part of our renovation and we'll be living in the house while we do it....here's hoping we survive it! 

P.S. Don't forget to check out Devine Color on Instagram for more projects, design ideas and paint colors! 

All After shots by Christa Rene Photography 

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Stephanie [Olive and Tate]
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Six Weeks

Six Weeks



Our baby girl is already (over) six weeks old! I know this is eye roll inducing to say, but it really does feel like she's been apart of our family for much longer. We are just so lucky that she is healthy, growing and ours. Because my Mom Brain has reached epic levels of terribleness, I thought I should take advantage of having a blog and jot down a few things about the last six weeks of Georgia (and you know, dump one million iPhone snaps onto any poor, unsuspecting readers who still show up when I hit publish).


Our babe is still a petite lady, weighing in somewhere near 8 whole pounds. She was born at 6lbs 5oz and has steadily been gaining weight and hitting her growth curve, so while she seems so mini to us, our doctors assure us that she is just a delicate girl (she clearly did not get that from me). It boggles my mind that she still weighs less than Gray did when he was born - and that she wears newborn sized clothes! I honestly only had one or two newborn sleepers on hand because Gray never fit into them, so I assumed none of our babies would, so our sweet babe rocks the same few sleepers over and over again. Sorry about that, G! 



As usual, we've really worked up a roster of nicknames for our newest offspring and rarely call her by Georgia. She earned the nickname Squeaks in the hospital because her cries were so small and quiet compared to our three year old's shouts, Peanut because she's so tiny, Georgie and, most often, Georgie Bell. I have no idea where Georgie Bell came from but we all call her that (or Bell) so much that Gray recently told a stranger in the grocery store that his little sister's name was Georgie Bell. I'm not sure that I've mentioned that Georgia was my great-grandmother's name and we gave her my middle name as her own, and of course, because we're Southern, it's also a family/maiden name from my mother's side of the family. 



Our Bell has been cursed with acid reflux and absolutely has a tough go of it in the evenings. During the day, she is a "happy spitter" but in the evenings she really struggles. We hate, hate, hate watching her be in pain and, when combined with the Witching Hour, we can have a pretty rogue time from 5-8pm. I am open to any and all suggestions to help her - we are on medication from our pediatrician before feeds but we'll do whatever we can to ease her pain (and ours) during the evenings, so hit me with your best tips. 

(total fail at our one month photos) 

Currently, her eyes are a dark blue and I can't wait to see what color they become as she grows. Gray's eyes are blue just like Justin's so I hope she'll also have baby blues but who knows! Her hair is this insanely spiky, hedgehog looking craziness in a shade that I can only describe as spun gold. What this child will look like when she's older is currently a mystery to me but my current guess is she'll be a blue eyed brunette. 



In her first six weeks of life, Georgia has been on vacation, gone on girl's lunches, managed to wrap her brother around her little finger, learned to rock a car nap, is waking twice a night and sometimes only once to eat, is starting to coo and is spending more time awake during the day. She loves bath time, which comes as a relief at the end of the evening, and sleeps best in her DockATot. 



We are so in love with our sweet girl and I kiss her face so much that she'll probably learn to roll her eyes before she learns to roll over. Such is life, Bell, such is life. 
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Stephanie [Olive and Tate]
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Three

Three



Oh, my sweet boy. 
How are you three years old already? 

I honestly can't wrap my brain around the fact that we've been parents for three whole years (and let's be honest, some days it feels like we've been parents for thirty years, but that's a post for another day). We are just so in awe of how Gray has grown into a little person who is funny, kind and number obsessed. 

For his third birthday, our Gray asked for a rainbow cake (thanks to his love of the Magic School Bus Rainbow episode) and to blow out candles. We had a super casual get together in our backyard with friends and family to celebrate and brought out all things "Gray" for the shindig: rainbow balloons, a gigantic T Rex balloon, all green everything (in the shade of grass, his fave), and his blow up pool. Although we had a massive thunderstorm right smack in the middle of things, we made the best of it by dragging the party goods into our currently-full-of-boxes garage and letting the boys play in the rain. The night ended with a water balloon fight between the dads guests and an exhausted birthday boy. 



We started the day with a pajama party and the balloons were absolutely his favorite part of the day. He kept saying "look at my birthday party!" and even thanked us for singing him Happy Birthday (insert crying emoji here). 




My parents were in town and I'm not sure who had more fun opening presents - the three year old or his grandfather! 





Pool hangs during the monsoon were a must, even if my yard was a mud puddle...


Two cakes for our big boy! The rainbow cake was from the Swiss Bakery in Greenville and the Oreo chocolate ice cream cake was a Coldstone masterpiece...and my request! 


Thank you to all of our friends and family who spent the evening with us celebrating our first born. Gray is, without a doubt, lucky to have you in his life.

Tate, we are so honored to be your parents. Mommy and Daddy are so proud of you and all that you are. We know year three will be the best one yet! 

And now, pardon me while I sneak off to cry my eyes out that my baby is practically an adult already. 

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Stephanie [Olive and Tate]
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Welcome, Baby Georgia

Welcome, Baby Georgia






Our sweet Georgia girl arrived a few weeks ago and we are head over heels in love with her. Her birth was a welcome surprise at just 37 weeks gestation and it was, thankfully, another quick and successful C Section delivery. Our tiny babe, named after my great-grandmother, came into this world at a rapid pace (Justin almost missed her birth) and screamed her way through her first thirty minutes or so of life, but she has proven to be the perfect fit for our family. Justin and I are so grateful to our family and friends who dropped everything to be with Gray at a moments notice - we couldn't have done it without you.

Instead of a classic Birth Story post, I put together a little video of photos from one of the most precious events of our lives: when Gray met Georgia. Truth be told, I spent my entire pregnancy dreaming of the moments captured in these shots. My sweet boy has been so excited to welcome his baby sister into the world and while we didn't know exactly how he would react when she officially arrived, we did know that it would be a moment we would never forget. I asked Courtney Malone of Courtney Malone Photography to be there when our children met for the first time so that I could be completely present (and not in mama-razzi mode) and I am eternally grateful that I did. Each second of that first meeting is more than I could have ever imagined - not a single photo that includes Gray is posed - he asked to hold her, see her "tiny little feet" and picked up the bottle to feed her - and Justin and I were just in awe of him. He is absolutely the world's best big brother. 

 I cry every single time that I look at these photos - the look of pride on my first born's face with our teeny tiny, only 18 hours old, baby girl in his arms is more than my post-baby mama heart can bear. We are so blessed to have been given these children and they are, without a doubt, our greatest joy. 

Make sure your volume is on....



Song credit: The Voice Complete Season 9, Jordan Smith, "Halo (The Voice Performance)"
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Stephanie [Olive and Tate]
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The Upstate Clutter Coach

The Upstate Clutter Coach



 So, recently my inbox and DM's have been flooded with same question: how did you pull off two moves (old house to apartment, apartment to new house) and a renovation while pregnant and staying home with a toddler. 

And honestly, the answer is somewhat simple: I've had to prioritize...and ask for help. 

But here's the rub: I'm not a natural at asking for help. In fact, I hate asking for help. I like to do things myself and on my own timeline - and while that has definitely served me in the past, I had to admit that there was no way I was going to be able to pull all of this off solo this go 'round. So, I set small goals for the move-in portion of our new house: in the first weekend I wanted to have my son's bedroom completely set up and our temporary master bedroom and bathroom livable. And I wanted our kitchen completely unpacked and organized within one week of moving in. I managed to get the bedrooms in working condition but I couldn't look at all of those kitchen boxes without feeling overwhelmed and physically exhausted (and afraid of pre-term labor!).

Thankfully, I managed to put my help-asking issues aside and called Lauren, the Upstate Clutter Coach, to rescue me. And rescue me, she did.

 Here's a little peek at what Lauren walked in to, exactly seven days after the movers dropped off our stuff:

 



And here's what my kitchen looked like by the time she left, after eight solid hours of organizing, unpacking and creating a functioning layout for all of my kitchen items:




Before I started researching who could bail me out of my moving/kitchen/nine months pregnant situation, I really thought of professional organizers as the brave souls who tackle hoarding projects. I wasn't even sure if Lauren would have an interest in a project like mine, but it turns out that not only does her team specialize in packing and unpacking from moves but she can also help you de-clutter for home staging, create storage solutions and an organization system to help you get through a move without wanting to pull your hair out.



  When Lauren walked in my door, she took one look at my crazy child running around in his underpants, my giant belly and our disaster of a house and told me to sit, that she would handle it. I can't think of anything else I wanted to hear more in that moment than those words. The photo above is the perfect representation of Lauren - she is bubbly, happy and playful even after hours (and hours) of unpacking entire boxes of pot holders, wedding gifts and Clemson themed paraphernalia. She organized, we purged and she laid out our kitchen in a way that is functional and met my family's specific needs (a bottle drawer for baby, a snack drawer for toddler, a candy cabinet for husband). Most importantly, she never judged, even when she discovered that I had four different packs of cumin and couldn't name a single recipe that called for cumin.




While we worked, I got to pick her brain about her business and honestly found her Girl/Mom Boss story so interesting - I mean, she started her business in the craziest way (she literally said the words: "like good friends do, I threw all of my cleaning supplies, kids and snacks into the van....") - so I forced her into doing a little Q&A for Olive and Tate! Check out our conversation below and try to pretend like you don't notice how nosy I was being....


 Take us back to the beginning, what led you to start Upstate Clutter Coach?    
                        
Upstate Clutter Coach completely took me by surprise. At the time, I was a stay-at-home mom of an infant and a toddler enjoying random play dates and endless amounts of tidying. One day, a fellow mom in the trenches called to say that she couldn’t make it out because she needed to stay home and clean her out-of-control house. Like good friends do, I threw all my cleaning supplies, kids, and snacks into the van. I was going to help her get her home back in shape while the kids watched endless amounts of TV. What could go wrong? 
As we cleaned, we were constantly interrupted, but not by the five kiddos. We were interrupted by the fact that the “stuff” around her home had no place to go. Cleaning wasn’t the problem --- clutter was. So instead of using our rags, we walked to different areas of the home evaluating the current storage systems. There was so many things that I wanted her to do differently, but my genius friend (who has two masters degrees) looked at me like I might be from Mars. 

Then, something strange happened. In the two weeks that followed, my friend decided to give my suggestions a try. Not only did they work, but they also relived anxiety and mental stress. Thinking became easier. Cleaning was a breeze. And then she said the fateful words that would launch Upstate Clutter Coach, “You could probably make money doing this!”




 What do you wish people knew about working with a professional organizer?

Working with a professional organizer is like working with a personal trainer for your space. We evaluate, plan, and then break a sweat to help your space reach its goals. Professional organizers know that the reasons for clutter are many and that every client’s situation is different. We aren’t here to judge our clients --- we’re here to support and empower them, whatever it takes. Some days the sessions go quickly and you feel like a champ. Other days are harder, because we’re working with items that have deep emotional ties. As your coach, it’s our job to help you make the hard decisions, to discover why systems aren’t working, and to provide the encouragement and direction you need to get the job done once and for all. 
 Do you have a "classic client"? Who reaches out to you most often?

Our classic client is the busy mom --- the stay-at-home-with-little-ones, work-in-the-professional-world, and serve-tirelessly-in-the-community kind of mommas. Because their top priorities are the people they love, the needs of the home simply take a back seat. We all want to have the Pinterest-worthy homes, but that’s not reality. Real is never-ending laundry, dishes piled high, and boxes never unpacked from the last move. Professional organizers come into these messy places and do the problem solving that our clients just don’t have the time to do. Our expertise provides solutions, hope, and peace. 

 What is your fave type of job to tackle?

My favorite job is the “too much stuff” room. You know, the kind where you have to hopscotch to get across the floor and is always sealed off from visitors. When I work with clients on these spaces, a lot of decisions are made. We have to go through each item and evaluate why it’s been hanging out so long without being used, where it should go if it still has some life left in it, and how we can change our buying and storing habits to avoid this situation in the future. This is where life-long lessons are learned. This is where the real empowerment occurs. It’s more exciting than setting up a kitchen or reorganizing a pantry. These rooms are the hard, embarrassing spaces in my clients’ lives. Freeing them from their clutter strong-hold is like giving them a new lease on life. It reminds them that they are brilliant and bold even when their circumstances try to tell them otherwise; that they CAN conquer anything that comes their way. And who doesn’t love working a job like that?!


  How do you balance running a business with motherhood?

When I started the business, I wanted something that would allow me to be a mom AND give back to my community. I schedule most of my organizing sessions while the girls are in school, so that I can be there for them as soon as their afternoon begins. Blogging, balancing the books, and learning about new strategies happens at night once they’ve gone to bed. I’m also not afraid to leverage my energy. As a mom, I’d love to be able to do it all, but I can’t. There is no shame in hiring a contractor to do what you COULD do if you had the time, energy, or desire to do it. I personally hate dusting so having a cleaning lady come once a month to pick up my slack is totally my jam. 

 If you could share just one, what would be your best organizing "life hack"?

Plan for a clutter-catch area. Life gets busy, especially if you have little ones running around sabotaging your every organizing move. Since it’s nearly impossible to stop a twelve-month-old tornado AND keep your house clutter-free, designate an area that you’ll use to corral all the random clutter in a pinch. My favorite motive for the clutter-catch is the unexpected in-law visit. To avoid any drama, you’ve got to get the place straightened up pronto. The clutter-catch can be an area of your pantry or laundry room that is ALWAYS empty for when the need arises to temporarily toss ALL THE THINGS out of sight. While it will be your most genius hack, you’ve got to remember to go back in there and return all the things to their proper homes once the unexpected visitors leave. 

 If I wanted to become a professional organizer, where would you suggest I start?

You’ll want to download my ebook Elements: What You Need To Launch Your Professional Organizing Business. It’s chock full of all the random things you’ll need to consider as an entrepreneur to DIY your company. Did I mention it’s the cost of us going out to coffee? 

You’ll also want to check out a training program that I personally had the pleasure of reviewing last year. ProfitableOrganizer. There are a lot of freebies that they’ll send you just for subscribing, but I’d recommend looking into their entire training program (affiliate link). When I DIYed my company, I invested countless hours on Google and YouTube trying to sift through what was and wasn’t important. Profitable Organizer does all that for you and chunks the information into bite-sized video tutorials. From learning how to organize to launching your own website, you’ll be glad you didn’t waste any unnecessary time getting your business off the ground.

 What is your best piece of advice for fellow girl bosses who want to launch their own business?

Fear not. Fear will paralyze you in the what-if weeds. Instead, surround yourself with like-minded individuals who will be able to support, correct, and encourage your business from concept to production. You’ll never get everything 100% right. You won’t. You’ll make mistakes, you’ll waste resources, you’ll even screw up with clients. But all this is normal. And all of it is part of what creates a successful brand and business. Cast fear aside and jump in with both feet!

 Many, many thanks to Lauren for working with me and giving me peace of mind that I knew where the bottles were in case I went into labor. I am forever grateful!

 You can follow Lauren and The Upstate Clutter Coach on Instagram, Facebook, her blog and website


All after photos by Christa Rene Photography 

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Stephanie [Olive and Tate]
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