Friday, November 9, 2018

Garage Floor Transformation

Hey friends!  I am branching out from my usual posts to bring you something super exciting! 


Today we are going to discuss garage floors. 🤣 Yep, that's right.  Not something I had originally planned on blogging about, but I posted a few stories on Instagram about how we were having ours redone and you guys were extremely interested in it...so I thought I would just put it all in a blog post so you could reference back.

This post is not sponsored.  

Our garage is not just a garage.  It also doubles as my husband's man cave.  He loves cars, and always has, so he likes to hang out in the garage and tinker with/clean them in his spare time.  We had this same type of epoxy garage floor at our last house, and it was so nice!  Not only did it make the space look more like a finished room, but it is nice when things spill because they are easily wiped up.  Nothing can stain them!  


When we moved, this house had a similar flooring in the garage, but it was flaking off in several spots.  We called the company who installed it, and he reluctantly came out to fix them, but they just continued to flake up.  


It was just an inferior product and because we had the good stuff at our old house, it was obvious this floor was not only sub-par because of the materials, but also because of the way it was installed.  This isn't the best picture, but it shows how there was a brown paint or coating of some sort with just a few flecks scattered like confetti.  And whatever was used to seal it, did not last very long.   


We also had a few cracks in our concrete that needed to be repaired, so we decided to call our friend, John with Amazing Garage Floors, to take care of all our garage floor needs!  

He sanded down our old flooring, repaired all of the cracks, including a large chunk of concrete that was broken on the edge of the garage, and then installed new flooring.  And it looks amazing!  


We chose grey, black, and white flecks to match our color scheme, but they have over 200 color combinations!  


See how the floor is solid flecks now? You can't even see the base coat!  So, if this is something you have been contemplating, I highly recommend John!  He has several franchises nationwide, too, so even if you're not in the Kansas City area, he may have a dealer near you!


It's even Moose approved!  He sat in the trailer all day while they worked!  

Because before and after pics are so fun, let's take one last look at the before and after.  This was the best before pic I could find (since I wasn't anticipating writing an entire post about this floor)!



Looks so much better, and more importantly, the quality is top notch!




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Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Halloween 2018

It seems like Halloween was months ago.  And now, a mere six days later, it's getting dark at 5:00 and snow is in the forecast.  Boo.  This Halloween, and actually the entire month of October, was absolutely perfect!  I have thoroughly enjoyed the leaves changing color SO much this year.  I guess it's me getting older, slowing down a bit to actually appreciate the little things.  But, I do think it was just an amazing year for fall foliage!  And the weather was crisp and cool, just what a Halloween night should be!


Halloween for the Frenches this year involved a SWAT team!  Chase has been very engrossed in everything police/army/SWAT related for a while now, so he came up with the initial idea.  Y'all know I love a good family theme, so luckily Beckham went along with it.  Although, when asked by a few different people what he was going to be, he would often say something completely different...spider, ninja, tiger...just to name a few.  But, in the end, he was a SWAT.  

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Friday, November 2, 2018

One Dress, Six Ways

Hello there!  I can't believe it's already November!  Where in the heck did October go?  I will say, even though it seemed to fly by, we definitely tried to make the most of it because we were blessed with some amazing weather!  Maybe that's why it went by so quickly...because we were busy little bees!

And November always brings a huge candy hangover at my house.  I think all schools should make Nov 1 a teacher work day.  I mean, you know the teachers dread having to deal with the kiddos who stayed up too late and ate too much sugar!  Let's start a petition, shall we?

If you missed my Old Navy try on post earlier this week, definitely go check that out!  There are some cute things, at great prices, some of which I am also featuring in this post.


I love a versatile piece...one that can be worn multiple ways, across different seasons!  When I first saw this plaid dress, I thought it was cute, but then as I was trying it on, I just kept experimenting with different ways to wear it and there are so many!  These are the top 6, although, I am sure the possibilities are endless.
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Monday, October 29, 2018

Old Navy Try On

I hope you all had an awesome weekend!  The weather in Kansas City was absolutely amazing, so we tried our best to take advantage of it and crammed in lots of fall fun!  My kiddos were out of school Friday too, so we had an extra long weekend of fun!  Is it just me, or are the leaves more beautiful than ever this year?  Maybe it's just me being more appreciative in my old age, but I just can't get enough of the fall colors!

I recently ordered a few things from Old Navy, so I wanted to share my try on's with you!  Also, be sure to check back later this week because I am sharing how to style a particular Old Navy dress six different ways!  Gotta love a versatile piece!  

For sizing reference, I am 5'6", wear a S/M in tops and usually a 6/8 in pants.  I will link everything from this try on at the end of the post for ya!

Old Navy Try On / Fall Closet Staples  / Midwestern Mama

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Friday, October 26, 2018

Halloween Home Tour

We love Halloween!  Every year I think to myself, I am just going to get a *few* Halloween decorations out and focus more on fall decor....but then we start going through the boxes and the boys get so excited to see things they remembered from last year.  It's hard to refrain ourselves once we get going!

So, here we are...in full Halloween swing!  And being less than a week away, I wanted to finally get this post out before it's too late!

Halloween Decorations to make your home festive with a little bit of spook!  Midwestern Mama
It was so fun having a blank canvas with this faux shiplap wall this year!  If you want to see how I created this wall, you can read all about it here!

Halloween Decorations to make your home festive with a little bit of spook!  Midwestern Mama
This fireplace area is oddly hard to decorate!  The stone makes a lot of decor items blend in and they get lost.  I was able to incorporate things from our regular everyday decor into the Halloween mix, ie the ghouls hanging from the candlesticks and the skeleton coming out of the lantern.  

Halloween Decorations to make your home festive with a little bit of spook!  Midwestern Mama
In the past I usually just add a few Halloween decor items to our existing bookcase decor (like I mentioned doing on the mantel), but this year, I decided to try something new and I took down almost everything from the bookcase and filled it with Halloween goodies!  I love how it turned out and it's been fun to change things up!  When it's time to take it all down I will probably regret this decision, but it's fun for now!  

Halloween Decorations to make your home festive with a little bit of spook!  Midwestern Mama
Both of my sofa tables are challenging to decorate because you can see them from both the front and the back, depending on where you are standing in the room.  That makes it difficult to have frames, or things with an obvious back.  I have tried to incorporate mostly things that will look cute from both the front and the back!  The wooden signs are printed on both sides, which is perfect for what I need!

Halloween Decorations to make your home festive with a little bit of spook!  Midwestern Mama

Halloween Decorations to make your home festive with a little bit of spook!  Midwestern Mama
Both of these pumpkins were crafts from previous years.  The black one just has googley eyes glued all over it and for the orange one, I drilled holes all over, then pushed orange string lights through the holes, It looks really cool at night!  

Halloween Decorations to make your home festive with a little bit of spook!  Midwestern Mama
This guy is technically supposed to go in the ground outside, but I stashed him in here and he seems pretty comfortable!  It's one of those kits that looks like the skeleton is coming out of the grass, so there's no body, but with the creepy cloth, you'd never know it!

Halloween Decorations to make your home festive with a little bit of spook!  Midwestern Mama
We took things outside to the front porch, with a more fall themed decor, but a few pops of Halloween!  This will make things easier to transition to Thanksgiving after Halloween is over.  I'll have enough to put away inside, so I kept it pretty neutral outside!

Halloween Decorations to make your home festive with a little bit of spook!  Midwestern Mama
The black and white accents are really pretty neutral, but I love how they tie in with the witch's legs for a more Halloween feel!  

Halloween Decorations to make your home festive with a little bit of spook!  Midwestern Mama
And of course its fun to play around with Mr. Skeleton, although I can't leave him outside or my dogs will eat him!  

Halloween Decorations to make your home festive with a little bit of spook!  Midwestern Mama

Thanks for joining me on this Halloween home tour!  Have a great weekend!

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Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole

Hey friends!  Most of y'all know I'm smack in the middle of my 2nd Whole 30, so it may seem a little odd that I'm sharing a recipe for a meal I can't even eat right now.  But I have had this recipe in my drafts for a while, so I wanted to go ahead and share it with you! 

Do you ever get stuck in a dinnertime rut?  I definitely do.  I feel like we make the same things over and over because they are easy and I don't have to think about them.  But, I get bored, so I am always searching Pinterest for new, yummy, easy ideas that everyone in my family will actually eat.  All four of us like this meal, and that's a rarity in my household, so this meal is definitely a winner!  Winner, winner, chicken dinner! 😂 hahahaha!  Easily amused.  😏

This chicken cordon bleu casserole is one of those recipes that checks all the boxes!  I can prep this meal at any point during the day, and keep it in the fridge until it's time to throw it in the oven.  I usually make things even easier on myself and get a precooked rotisserie chicken.  Another shortcut you could take would be to use canned chicken...you know the kind that comes in a tuna fish style can?  Or if you are having chicken earlier in the week, just cook a couple of extra pieces and you'll have them all ready to go for this meal!



Ingredients:
4-5 cups cooked chicken, cubed or shredded (I use a pre-cooked rotisserie chicken)
1/2 pound deli ham, cut into squares
5-6 slices Swiss cheese

Sauce Ingredients:
2 Tbs butter
2 Tbs flour
1.5 cups milk
1 Tbs lemon juice
1 Tbs dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

Topping Ingredients (optional):
2 Tbs butter
1 cup panko bread crumbs (or crushed crackers)

Directions:
Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat.  Add flour and whisk until the mixture bubbles.  Cook for 1 minute, then add the milk, 1/2 cup at at time, whisking continuously to avoid lumps.  When all of the milk is added, reduce heat slightly and let the sauce bubble for a few minutes to thicken.

While the sauce is thickening, grease a casserole dish and layer the shredded chicken, ham, then Swiss cheese.  Cover with the mustard sauce.  Melt 2 Tbs butter and mix with the panko crumbs,  then spread evenly over the top of the casserole.  Bake at 350 for 25-30 min until bubbly.   Let stand 5-10 min before serving.

Let me know if you make it and what your family thinks! 






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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Layering Rugs

I have been loving the layered rug trend for a while now.  I started layering rugs inside, in my living room and my son's room, but I've also taken my love of layering outside!  I really like the added interest and texture two rugs gives.  It also allows you to occupy more space in an area if your current rug looks small in comparison to the space it is in.  


In Beckham's room I have a cream shag rug layered with a thin lattice rug over the top.

Navy Rug / White Shag Rug / Bedding / Brass Lamp

The navy rug was his original nursery rug from our old house, where it laid on lighter carpet and really looked amazing!  When we moved into this house, the dark rug just got lost against the dark wood floors.  I still liked the rug, so I didn't really want to shop for a new one.  I found this cream shag rug on major sale so I decided to layer it under the navy one to provide some contrast.  Now, the navy rug looks great again, and as an added bonus, he has a soft place to play!

Our living room rug is a square shape, which I wanted because we have a sectional that is the same width and length.  However, I felt like the rug was just a tad too small for the space and made the area seem smaller than it was.  I layered a jute 9x12 rug underneath, and even though it wasn't square, I just shoved part of it underneath the couch until it looked square.


Having a few inches sticking out beyond the existing rug has made this space feel bigger and more grounded...less like it's just floating out there in the middle of the living room.  Now, our coffee table on the other hand, definitely feels like it's floating out there in the middle of nowhere. 😂  It's too small for this space, and one day we will get a new one, but I haven't found one I love...so for now, this one serves it's purpose! 


And as I mentioned, I have taken my layering obsession outside!  Here are two layered rug looks we had on our patio this summer, and now also into fall!  Using black and white as a backdrop allows me to change the seasons without having to change the rug.  I could use either one of these for a Christmas porch too!


Most doormats are a standard size, and they look rather small against a large front door.  Adding a slightly larger mat underneath makes the space seem larger and more inviting.  

Here are a few other rugs that would be fun for layering 
Buffalo check is always a win
Pretty fall leaves
A pop of color
A cowhide rug is great to layer with!

So, what's your opinion?  Do you like the layered rug trend?


Some of the links in this post are affiliate links.  Thank you for shopping through my links and supporting my blog!
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Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Surprisingly Great Finds from Walmart

I ran to Walmart recently to grab some items for my son's school, and as I was rushing past the aisles, in hopes of getting the heck out of there ASAP, a cute ruffle sleeve sweater caught my eye.  I had my kids with me, so I wasn't about to stop and shop, but I felt the fabric, and was pleasantly surprised. They didn't have my size in store, so I made note of the brand and looked online later that day.  I was SHOCKED at the number of REALLY cute things they had!  And the prices were insane!  So, I placed an order to try them out.


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Thursday, October 4, 2018

A Thank You / Why I Do What I Do


I wanted to take a minute to THANK YOU for joining me in my tiny little corner of the web. I come here every day hoping to inspire others to be their best selves. I enjoy sharing things I love with people I love (that’s you😘), in hopes of making your day a little brighter.  Sometimes that's a craft I have enjoyed making, sometimes it's a mom hack that has made my life easier.  But mostly it's style inspiration because that's what I enjoy the most!  


The truth is, I’ve always liked fashion. Even in high school, when I would sometimes raid my brother's closet, I found it fun to express myself with clothing, shoes, accessories, hair, and makeup. However, after I had babies I felt lost. There were times that I didn’t even know who I was looking at in the mirror.  I felt like I had lost my sense of identity and I was simply a mom and nothing else.  I specifically remember going to a jewelry party and telling the host that while I loved several of the pieces on display, I didn’t feel like I should buy anything because I just stay at home with my son and I didn’t have anywhere to wear it. How sad!  Not that I should feel pressured to buy anything, but sad that I didn’t feel worthy enough of this jewelry.  

I often felt guilty for taking time to pamper myself (and I’m still working on this), and I would often wear frumpy clothes because they were just going to get spit up on anyway.  And let's face it...sometimes sleep was just more important than waking up early and getting ready for the day.  

But I started to realize that when I took some time to do something for myself, I was much happier, and therefore a better wife and mom.  It could be something as simple as putting on makeup, or wearing a cute shirt instead of that same old tee I wore the past 3 days in a row, or actually curling my hair instead of throwing it into a bun.  


So back to the point...I started this account because I wanted to build a community of people who support each other.  People who root for each other and also pick each other up.  I wanted to share fun ideas for all kinds of things I am passionate about...fashion, DIY, motherhood, photography, cooking, and the list goes on. 

It may seem silly to think that clothes and makeup can change your attitude, but it’s true. At least for me.  So I want you to know that it’s not vein to want to look nice.  It’s not self centered to love yourself.  It’s not egotistical to think you look cute in your favorite striped sweater.  You do you! 


Thank you for supporting me while I do me!  I am not a professional.  Most days I have no idea what I'm doing.  But, I am just doing life the best way I know how and I thank you for following along!  I am not perfect, I am inconsistent, I lose my temper, I cheat on diets.  I try to be as real as possible on here because I never want to give anyone the idea that I have it together all the time.  I definitely do not.  Sometimes social media can portray a seemingly "perfect" life because a lot of the pictures I post are pretty little squares.  I like the pretty squares. I think they provide inspiration for whatever you are passionate about...fashion, home decor, cooking, etc.  But, behind the squares, just know that we all have our own struggles, our own insecurities, our own real life.  

Thank you for all of the support you have given me, and I hope that somewhere along the way, you have gained something from me too!  

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Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Fall Bucket List

It's finally fall, y'all!  It seems like we have waited and WAITED for it to come this year!  And, now that the weather has cooled off and the calendar says it's officially FALL, it's time to get our fall activities in order.  

My kiddos love hitting up multiple local pumpkin patches, but in addition to that, there is a whole slew of things we enjoy this time of year.  I thought I'd share some of our fall bucket list ideas, and I'm hoping you will do the same!

On our list so far this year:

Drink apple cider
Weston Orchard and Vineyard
Decorate for Halloween
Play with kittens at Pumpkin's Etc.

Fall Bucket List!  Don't miss out on making memories this fall!  Check out our family's fall bucket list for lots of family fun inspiration!   /   Midwestern Mama

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Wednesday, September 26, 2018

All Things Target: Part 2

And, we're back!  Are you ready for part 2 of the Target finds?  Tell me, did you like Part 1?  Was there anything that just screamed "add to cart"?

If you missed Part 1, you can check it out HERE.
And don't forget about the shoe post too!

Let's get down to business.


I loved this floral blouse so so much!  They only had an XS in store, and while it fit well enough for this try on, I really needed a small.  I ordered the correct size online because I love it so much!  And guess what...It was just marked as a clearance item for $13.98!  Don't let this one get away!  It's so stinking cute!  It's definitely on the sheer side, so I would wear a thin cami underneath.  The color is not coming through on the screen, but it's a light mint green with orange-ish/coral flowers.  So many fun possibilities with this for fall!


And, here is the blouse with a faux leather jacket.  The cognac color of this jacket was rich! I love the collar and the gold hardware.  I am wearing a medium and it fit great.  I still had plenty of room to fit a more bulky shirt underneath, if I wanted to.  If you don't plan to wear anything thick under this jacket, you could probably size down.  


Here's a closeup of the jacket detail.  It looks so much more expensive than it is!



I love a pop of color, and this green cardi is so fun!  They didn't have my size in store, so it looks a little frumpy, but that color is so vibrant!  I am wearing a large, but I think a medium would have fit better.  

The black and white long sleeve tee is a great basic.  The material was super soft, it was stretchy, and had a lot of length to it.  I'm wearing a meduim.  And, this is the same black cami from Part 1 of my Target try ons, which is another great basic layering piece.  If you don't have a black cami, this is a really great one for only $17.99.  These are also the same boyfriend-style jeans from Part 1.



How fun is this distressed denim vest?  This is one of the few things I picked up from the Wild Fable line.  I haven't had a lot of luck with items from that line because most of them are cropped or way to boxy for my style.  This vest does fall into the slightly boxy category, but I sized down and it looks really cute!  This is an XS, so if you are smaller than me, I would not recommend this vest for you.  

The grey stripe mock turtleneck is really soft and a great layering piece.  I am wearing a small.



This dark denim button up is great on it's own or layered under sweaters, cardigans, jackets, etc.  A great wardrobe staple if you don't already have one.  I like how the lighter part of the fabric shows when you roll up the sleeves.  I'm wearing a medium.  This cardigan is the same one I featured in Part 1, and also comes in brown, black and purple.

I'm disappointed that the color of these jeans isn't showing up accurately in the pictures!  They are a deep wine color, and they are so pretty!  I had to try on 1 size bigger than my normal size because that's all they had in store, but my true size would have been perfect.  They were mid-rise and had a good amount of stretch without feeling like they would bag out.    


The pictures aren't doing this sweater justice.  It is beautiful in person!  That back lace detail is absolutely gorgeous!  I am wearing a small, so it's definitely a little oversized.



A good anorak jacket is so great this time of year!  Lightweight, but still keeps you warm.  This one has a great length to it, and it was very flattering.  This is a small, and I had plenty of room for bulky sweaters underneath.  Also available in olive green, grey, and burgundy.



This pumpkin spice-loving cardigan caught my eye immediately!  I ordered (and returned) a similar one during the Nordstrom sale.  But for $22.99, this baby came home with me!  And, I couldn't be happier.  I tried on both the small and the medium, but ultimately went with the medium.  I like a little extra room in my cardigans for the cozy factor.  


These are the shoes I was wearing in all of the try on pictures.  Booties / Leopard flats. They both ran true to size and are extremely comfy.  They are also both great transitional shoes as we are breaking away from summer heat and heading into cooler temps.  


This pair of slouchy boots is an awesome dupe for the Sam Edelman ones which retail for $225.   Considering these are $39.99, it's a no brainer!  They fit true to size and were very comfortable!  The heel is not too high, and the calf width would fit most people.  These pics aren't doing them justice, so check them out online and you will fall in love!


And these camo cuties deserve a mention because they hopped in my cart as I was walking down the shoe aisle.  Oops!  Also true to size.  


Let's chat about belts.  They had so many great basic brown and black belts, but I loved these fun ones!   The leopard print one was calf hair, and I loved the vintage vibe of the gold metallic one


Here's the gold one on, so you can see the thickness of the band.  It's the perfect width if you ask me!

Whew!  That does it folks!  Are you still with me?  I wouldn't blame you if you jumped ship long ago.  But, there are SO many cute things, it was hard to pass them up and not share them with you!  I'd love to know if you snagged anything that I shared, so please tell me if you did!

And again, thank you so much for supporting me by shopping through my affiliate links!  You guys are the best!


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