Happy Blogiversary

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Hello MLAaMW Readers! This month I am celebrating my very first blogiversary! It has truly been a whirlwind of a year, filled with twists, turns, and more changes than I could have ever imagined. Continue reading



Hello my dear readers,

The Linville headquarters will soon be changing locations! It’s hard to believe that it’s been almost 9 months since I said “I do” and stepped into this place we’ve come to call home.  It’s truly been a labor of love  turning our apartment into a place of sanctuary, and now it’s time to do that very same thing again! The hubs and I have been bustling through the to-do lists packing, purging, cleaning, and doing those last-minute paint touch-ups. The trip to Home Depot has really tempted me to paint the new place, or at least finish up those furniture re-models I’ve been putting off. That’s the beauty of starting anew. Everything is fresh and plain and just waiting for me to fill it with inspiration and fun. (Kind of reminds me of those “white box challenges” on Design Star) In true nesting fashion, I have been on the lookout for great new items to bring into our new home. I scored big-time at the amazing CB2, the chic and modern branch of Crate &Barrel. Usually I peruse the CB2 website, using the clean modern lines and bold color as inspiration for my decor, but I am way too thrifty to give in to its designer prices. Well this time I was in for a sweet surprise. I found these charming appetizer plates for $.95/pair! The Chinese take-out box print  immediately made me smile, remembering our wedding favors. My groom and I cleverly crafted our own wedding soundtrack based on a mix of our favorite tunes (which were featured in our wedding) and wrapped them in brightly colored tissue paper and wrapped them in Chinese take-out boxes. So from ring boxes, to Chinese boxes, to cardboard moving boxes, life keeps surprising me..but in the best of ways.

Tell me, how do you find inspiration for your home?


Since that lovely day in October, I have been nesting. Nesting, as Webster would so eloquently put it is, “to create and settle into a warm and secure refuge”. That is one of the beautiful things I have come to learn about marriage, my husband and I have created a place of rest and safety in one another and our home is a refuge from the chaos and confusion of this world. It’s an amazing thought that I can revel in. I don’t know if you have ever been fortunate enough to see a little bird building her nest, but the remarkable thing about it is that the nest is built one tiny wispy twig, blade of grass, or bit of straw at a time. She constructs the foundation from nearly nothing, souring the land around her for materials and very skillfully and patiently begins to build piece by piece her nest, her home and place of refuge. This is such an inspiring image to me, to see the diligence and resourcefulness that God our creator has given her to create such strength and beauty practically out of thin air. And to think that I am doing a similar job, wow! So often I undermine myself, thinking that because this season of life hasn’t led me to going on a mission to India, writing a novel, building a skyscraper, discovering a dinosaur fossil…that my role in life is not important. When in reality, I am building a nest of serenity for my marriage and a place of protection for my future children. Now there is something to think about.

Speaking of nest gathering, I went on a treasure hunt this weekend with my partners-in-crime Susan and Sam. With a crisp twenty from the ATM, we spent a sunny Saturday afternoon bargain hunting at a local neighborhood garage sale. This has become a sort of game for me. I will take only a small amount of cash and challenge myself to see how many fun and interesting things I can find at a local garage sale, thrift store, market, etc. If I find something I really like and I can use it in the apartment I will try to (very politely) haggle a good price for it. It’s quite fun.  Even if I come home empty-handed, I always meet fun new people and that is a reward in itself. We also stumbled upon a cute little bookshop that sells old library books that have gone out of circulation. There I snagged several paperbacks to add to my library for only seventy-five cents each! What a great day spent with my hubby and best friend.

Here are some of my lovely Saturday finds. Give me your feedback! What are some of your favorite inexpensive ways to build your nest?

Readers Digest from the 80's and 90's...free!

The Classics...75cents each

Tiny Bottles...7/ $1

Beautiful Yellow Blossoms...25 cents

Apothecary Jars (still in box)...3/ $8

Turning a New Page: How it all began

I guess you can say it all started when what I had known ended. Upon getting engaged, I made a pact with my (now) husband that I would resign from my hectic job and take the first year of our marriage to explore the brave new world of domesticity.  So resignation in hand, I said goodbye to my vocation of four years and armed to-the-teeth with cookbooks I set out on an extraordinary adventure. It’s been quite the adventure too. I’ve had the opportunity to take root in my strengths and learn from my mistakes. This is a compilation of my experiences as a housewife, my culinary feats and ever-growing search for great food, and pearls of wisdom that I’ve gathered along the way.

This is a gift to you, my fellow readers.