Posts of Christmas Past

Beings it has been a decade since I posted on the regular, I thought I'd share some of my favorite past Christmas projects! I know it's a *smidge* too early.  I'm not big on skipping holidays (especially ones as delicious as Thanksgiving) but I've been gathering some holiday ideas and thought you all might be too!

Here are some of my favorites:

How to Make a Christmas Wreath Trio

How to Make a Gnome (Or if you're not feeling crafty, buy one here!)


I don't want you crafting while hangry so here are some delicious baked goods to whip up. And wine is never a bad idea. (Especially during the holidays! #amiright)

Andes Mint Cookies


Simple Holiday Sangria


What holiday crafts are you tackling? 

unique Christmas decor and the treats

Tips for Buying a Sofa Online (Article Sven Sofa Review)

Ordering anything online is always a gamble. But furniture? What kind of crazy person orders a couch they've never sat on?

This crazy person.

I posted last week about our new Sven couches from Article. Today I'm going to share with you my full review of the process along with tips to help you with your next online furniture purchase.

(This post is not sponsored. I wasn't even considering blogging again at the time of purchase (January 2017)!

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The actual ordering process was as easy as ordering toilet paper from Amazon. Add two sofas to cart. Check out. Boom. Confirmation e-mail sent. 

Things we considered before purchasing were a little more time consuming than a toilet paper purchase. Here's some factors to consider:

Reviews: Although the price was right on these stylish sofas, what is the quality actually like? Are they less expensive for a reason? Yes, I understand that they cut out the middle man but is that actually just a cover up? I Googled "Sven sofa reviews" and that search is lacking. I turned to the lovely Instagram.  I browsed Article's tagged photos and also searched #ourarticle. I found some Instagrammers (preferably ones that paid for them with their own dollars) that already owned the sofas to answer my quality questions. All had raving reviews.

Size: Will two giant couches fit in our living room? Should we go with the love seat size? To answer this, we mapped out the living room with painter's tape. The tape made it easy to see the footprint of the sofas. We also considered the height beings our floor plan is very open. We compared the listed height to the height of our previous sofas.  (Each sofa fits 3 people comfortably!)

Fabric: We live in our living room. This isn't just a pretty place to look at. We drive toy cars here. The dog sleeps here. We eat ice cream while watching Netflix here. These couches will be loved. The Article website states dry clean only. Will that work for us? Fabric choice was my largest gamble in this whole decision. (More below in Maintenance!)


Our estimated shipping date was 3-4 weeks. Ours took closer to 8 weeks. Article had a two week delay out of their warehouse. They e-mailed me about the delay and also provided a credit for future purchases. A week after the expected two week delay, I still hadn't heard anything. I contacted Article and they quickly discovered the sofas were sitting in the local contracted delivery company's warehouse. The contracted company had failed to contact us. Article handled the whole issue quickly and the couches were delivered a few days after that. The delay wasn't an issue for us. My brother was taking our old couches and he didn't need them for another month.  I was honestly impressed at Article's customer service during the process. I assumed they would make me call the local company but they handled everything and were very apologetic. I would keep the possibility for delays in mind if you're needing your furniture right away. (Honestly this is something you'll more than likely have to deal with when ordering any furniture that doesn't come from the show room floor. I think every piece of furniture I've ever ordered had a delay in arrival. Maybe I just have bad shipping luck?)


Our sofas were delivered in two giant boxes. (I wish I had a photo!) The sofas were well protected. The only assembly required was to screw in the feet. Extremely easy.  (It took us longer to unwrap them.)

Article has a 30 day return policy.  You have to keep the original packaging/boxes for returns. This could be a problem if you don't have a place to store two giant boxes. I'm talking take up part of the garage giant. It was a happy day when we took all of the packaging to the recycling center! We were instantly in love but definteily wanted to make sure they passed the 30 day test.


The category we were most concerned about!

We stinking love these couches. They are so comfortable. I feel like they mold to us but not in a saggy gross way. More in a loving hug way.  They're super soft. Nate and I were both honestly surprised with the quality.  

The frame is sturdy. The tufted seat bench is squishy but yet firm enough that it should age well. The back cushions fluff easily.  The bolster pillows work well enough for us that we don't feel the need to have extra throw pillows (which always end up thrown on the floor...because toddler).


The cleaning aspect was actually my biggest hold up with regards to buying these sofas. We live with a toddler and dog. The Article website/customer service could only recommend dry cleaning because that's all they have tested. 

I would say they are  high maintenance but in a way that forces me to clean them on a regular basis.  I find that they need to be vacuumed once a week (which I should have probably been doing in the past anyways). We generally have Clark eat in the kitchen (even snacks) so I wasn't super concerned about food but we have had a few drink spills.  I also hadn't considered toddler snot in the equation. (Why are toddlers so adorably gross?)  After some Googling of maintenance of velvet upholstery, I found recommendations to use just the bubbles of dish soap to gently clean soiled areas and this has worked like a charm.  It's actually kind of like magic!

Would I purchase from Article again? ABSOLUTELY!  We actually purchased two chairs for the living room shortly after. More on those soon!

I hope this review helps some of you! Let me know if you have questions!

Living Room Updates

What do normal people with a toddler and dog do when it comes to furniture buying?  Oh, they don't buy new furniture?  Weird.  But what if they fall in love with beautiful blue velvet couches and their husband answers "Whatever, sure" when they ask if getting new furniture is in the budget. With that kind of answer, you totally buy all of the couches before said husband realizes what he's done.

Okay, we actually had a pretty lengthy discussion on whether or not buying new furniture with a toddler was a dumb decision and if it aligned with our current goal of paying off our mortgage in the next few years. I pulled up these lovely Sven sofas from Article and Nate was surprisingly totally on board.  I figured blue velvet and on-line ordering would rule him out. But he also liked the style, price point and the fact that we didn't have to step foot in a furniture store.  We're firm believers in creating a happy, stylish home that isn't dictated by a tiny person.  We decided to go for it.

I'll do a full review of ordering through Article next week. I mean, who buys a couch without sitting on it? The same crazy people buying new furniture with a toddler, I guess.  Spoiler: We're super happy with our purchase! (Let me know if you have specific questions you'd like answered in my next post!)

The couches are extremely comfortable and the upholstery is stunning. 

They spot clean easily (looking at you toddler snot) and the totally random bonus is that the Roomba can clean underneath them. Winning.

The couches have added just the right amount of quirk to our living room. (We've since added two Article chairs that I'll post about soon too. I started this post back in like March. #truestory)

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It's crazy to look back at our past living room decor.  It's fun to see how our space has evolved.  

I wonder how blue sofas are going to fair 10 years from now? Only time will tell but for now we love them! If nothing else, I'll think back fondly to the memories of our toddler wiping his nose on them while giggling and then kissing the dog.


Remember Me?

Hi. Remember me? It's been a long time!  

I dusted off my laptop. Literally. I then proceeded to drop it on the floor.  It now makes this nasty crunching sound when I try to open it. It's possibly a sign I shouldn't start blogging again but I've never been good about paying attention to those sorts of things. I had to reset my blog password and remember how to use my blog platform.  It took me like a month to write this post. But dude, I'm back. I think.

Decor and the Dog is probably going to look a little different.  It will probably be a little more lifestyle (Ugg. I know, right?) and probably only once a week.  Consider yourself warned.  I do, however, have 2 years worth of house updates to catch you up on. (Okay, really one year because we literally did nothing the first year of Clark's life.) I can, in no way, keep up with the big guys that do it for a living. (Honestly, I don't want to. I'm exhausted thinking about it. The staging. The money.)  Just know there will be less. If this isn't your thing, I TOTALLY GET IT! Keep pretending that I don't exist! Cool? Cool!

You're probably wondering what we've been up to? (The 3 of you still reading this! Hey, Mom!) 

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I'm still working as a pharmacist but I've gone down to three days per week. This gives me a wonderful work/mom life balance. I work for a great company that has been very supportive of this decision. I honestly haven't been doing a whole of crafting/diy-ing in the past 2 years. My focus has been on raising our kid. Turns out babies are needy. Who knew? As Clark is becoming more independent, I've been slowly tackling a few projects. Bringing back the blog is one of those projects. I need a place to dump the words.

Nate took a new job over a year ago. Can we get a high-five for no more crazy tax season hours?!?  He's been so happy with the change. He's been busy with some building projects and keeping the rest of us out of trouble.

Clark is now 2. *insert cheesy crap about kids growing up too quickly/time flying/yadda yadda*.  The kid has a giant personality. He's a chatterbox that's in love with his dog, cleaning, and bossing us around.

We can't forget the most important, Ike. Ike is still living the life. He's spoiled rotten. He's refusing to believe that he's 10.5 years old and he's as spunky as ever!  He's currently stuck in a cone of shame after a mass removal (Benign! THANK GOODNESS!). He's enjoying having a tiny human to feed him things he shouldn't be eating and to throw his ball 1000 times a day.

I look forward to sharing more ahead! If you have questions, post topics, etc. Send them my way!  Who's still reading this? Tell me more about you! 

Colors, Costumes and Cookies

Colors, Costumes and Cookies

Fall is just the worst, isn't it? I kid.

We've been enjoying the Fall colors and the Halloween celebrations! The lovely NewlyWoodwards hosted a family party on Saturday night. We tried to help out the ol' Chicago Cubs.  Clark went as Clark the Cub Bear, Nate was Harry Caray and I went as the cursed Billy Goat. Clark and Harry tried to make peace with the goat but it appears we need more than dorky costumes to reverse the curse! Maybe it would help if I put more than 10 minutes of effort into our costumes. I always have such good intentions and then time gets away from me. Why?

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Big Boy Birthday Party (First Birthday Party)

Big Boy Birthday Party (First Birthday Party)

I warned Nate going into this whole parenting thing that everything I mother turns out to be a little quirky

Exhibit A: Ike.

Exhibit B: Our baby's favorite "toy" is an old Bob's Big Boy Burger bank.  Out of all of the toys in his nursery, his favorite thing to look at/play with is Big Boy.  "Big Boy" was even one of his first set of words. He only said it in a whisper which made it even more hilarious.

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Boo! Halloween Mantel Decor

Boo! Halloween Mantel Decor


Boo! I'm backkkkk!  

Spooky, right?    

My buddy, Gretchen, suckered me back in with her Dec-O-Ween blog hop.  Some old and new blog buddies are sharing some awesome Halloween decor inspiration.  Halloween decor isn't usually my thing. I tend to favor Fall decor over skeletons and witches. I am, however, glad I had an extra push to bring a little spook into our home.

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How to Make a Christmas Wreath Trio

How to Make a Christmas Wreath Trio

Our front door is having an identity crisis.  There are pumpkins on the steps and this darling wreath trio on the front door.

It's just so pretty that I can't take it down!  Our front steps will just have to celebrate fall-mas for the next two weeks.

I made this wreath trio for Saturday's DIY Workshop at the Home Depot.  It felt so good to do something creative!  I'll be sharing my tips and tricks at the Bettendorf store.  Come join me to kick off the holiday decorating season!

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