The Sound of Music

Taste, touch, sight, smell and sound. If all the senses were on the line and I had to pick just one to keep, I’d keep the ability to hear sound. The race between keeping sight and sound is a tight one but sound has the edge because of it’s ability to make even the mundane special – chores, mornings, the drive to work. I’ve forgotten the details of things I’ve seen but I can remember most sounds – most songs – I’ve heard. Sounds instantly connect me to places, events, people. Sounds make my memories even more vivid.

The sound of music? The sound above all sounds (saved Adam’s voice in the middle of a stressful day and Ivy’s first cry).

Certain songs are like a time capsule for me. The entire Dirty Dancing soundtrack takes me back to choreographing notdirty dances to “This Overload” in my bedroom as a seven year old. The “Fly” album by the Dixie Chicks snaps me back to driving my teal Mazda Protege’ back and forth to school my sophomore year of high school. “Disappear” by The Gabe Dixon Band brings tears to my eyes almost every time because it reminds me of the day Adam left for Afghanistan.

Mine is not a unique condition and that is why the sound of music is the best sound and the sound that unites the universe (whoa. deep.).

When Ivy was in the womb and reached the week where sound became a thing for her, we put headphones on my belly and were super selective about what we piped through them. I played Sara Bareilles for her first because Sara is my favorite. Stevie Wonder sang “Signed, Sealed, Delivered” to her next. All throughout my pregnancy, I lead worship at our church. I loved the idea that she could hear all of that – that she would know my voice and her dad’s voice.

When we wake her up in the morning, we open the curtains in her room and turn on music for her. It might be too early to tell but, as of right now, she is a morning person (like her dad) and I really want to encourage that by making the morning sort of a celebration. She smiles when she makes eye contact with us first thing  and I want to be able to remember the feeling we get when she does that. We’re building a soundtrack for this part of her life and this part of our lives.

So far we’ve incorporated:

Queen, Stephen Kellogg and the Sixers, Sara Bareilles, Stevie Wonder, Elton John, Allen Stone, Jamie Cullum, most every Motown song ever recorded, Journey, and more.

We are going to take her to some of the Alive After Five concert series this summer (we bought her a pair of these – don’t worry). We are also hoping to drag her along to Alabama Shakes in August as well.

We will obviously encourage her to find whatever* music speaks to her but can’t help but be excited about imparting at least a little bit of what makes her parents tick when it comes to music.


– Layne


*By “whatever,” we should clarify that, if “whatever” includes anything by Luke Bryan or Florida Georgia Line, we’ll take away her listening device.


Our family of two humans, two Australian Shepherds and two very hairy cats grew by another (tiny) human at the end of February.

Our tiny human’s name is Ivy.


Since her arrival, my best explanation about the change that occurred in our home was a shift in priorities.

 Zip it, veteran moms and dads – this is our story and I realize the previous statement should go without saying. I have more to say and that should make saying the first obvious thing ok.

First of all – sleep is like currency. For the first few weeks, our sleep accounts were overdrawn in a huge way. Anyone you talk to prior to having the baby jokes about the fact that you won’t get any sleep ever again. The first question anyone asks a new parent is, “Are you getting any sleep?” It’s a safe assumption that the answer to that particular question is always “no.” Some people will respond with a tired, “a little,” but they really mean, “No. None. Zero sleep.” The sleep you are getting is nothing like the sleep you were getting prior to worrying about whether or not the tiny human you worked so hard to bring into the world is still breathing. So finding time to nap is like making a big fat withdrawal from an ATM and rolling around in your freshly acquired piles of dirty, smelly, wonderful money.

Second, finding out what normal feels like after bringing a baby home becomes very, very important. While walking around in what some parents have described as a fog, we wondered how quickly we would be able to adjust to our new dictator and all of her demands. Veteran parents assured us that we would start to feel normal again. Veteran moms talked to me about how my body would start to look normal(ish) again. We would leave the house again without the anxiety that can only be compared to the type of anxiety Matthew McConaughey felt before getting launched into space for an undetermined amount of time. “Do we have enough diapers? What about the bottle? Diaper cream? Extra outfits? Swaddle blankets? Socks? Not those socks – the other socks? Should I bring the pump…? An extension cord? Maybe we should just stay here?” We found out that each week gets more and more “normal.” Granted – it’s a completely new and different normal, but it feels right.

Cleanliness is less and less of a priority. I don’t necessarily mean personal hygiene (though those standards have dropped considerably) as much as I mean having a tidy house. First of all, with a new baby comes visitors – a lot of (awesome) visitors. Prior to Ivy’s arrival, having visitors meant a flurry of cleaning activity; this is no longer the case. What you see is what you get. We are buried under piles of Tupperware from all the great meals our friends and family brought us! There are stacks of tissue paper, gift bags, brand new outfits and toys from aunts, uncles, grandparents, cousins, and friends. But then! Then there is the real mess – the laundry (clean and dirty) is everywhere and might never find a home. Our dishes are continually in use – never finding their way back to the cupboard. The dogs have managed to sneak off with a couple of Ivy’s soiled diapers and we’ve found them under couches, under the dining table and in the middle of the piles of aforementioned laundry. Sigh. But here’s the thing – Adam and I are both working full-time. Waking hours are precious. When we’re home and awake, we are connecting with one another or with Ivy; there isn’t much time left over for the level of tidy that happened before her. What you see is what you get at our house…and you’re going to see (and smell) a lot. Fortunately, you’ll also (hopefully) see a husband and wife that still know and enjoy each other and a happy (albeit sticky) baby.

I suppose the last priority shift I’ll share today is a deep understanding that people are important. I know, again with the painfully obvious statements, but let me explain why I’m/we’re just now understanding the weight of that statement: everyone is someone’s baby. The emotional, physical and financial investment we’ve made in our kid already has left us raw and vulnerable. We love this kid and she makes us so proud – she doesn’t even talk yet. We are one set of parents out the billions of parents in this world! Everyone is someone’s kid. What’s that you say? You’ve already figured this out? Good! You are a much less self-consumed human than I. For me, to sprout this new-found concern for other people, it took becoming the mother of brand new person. People are important and Ivy taught me that.

– Layne


Wired, Painted, Purchased and Updated

This weekend there was crafting and more crafting! There was thrifting and antiquing and there was…well room primping?

First of all, this Himmeli wreath tutorial from Mandi at Vintage Revivals got things started. Saturday crafternoon with the ladies (Adam did not participate) was relaxing and this was the result:

It’s certainly not perfect and could use another coat of gold spray paint but for a $2.79 pack of cocktail straws and a $2.19 spool of wire – it’s not so bad. Adam suggested using paper straws next go around…maybe some metal tubing. There are all kinds of possibilities with this tutorial and Mandi made it very easy to understand.

Next up? The boring shades on the dining room chandelier. The dull tan shades got a shot of gold spray paint:

Then masked:

photo 4

Then whitewashed:

The reveal:

The finished product:

Again – not perfect but a fun, clean, free update.

Next up – the purchases from the weekend. Boise houses another treasure chest for just about any antique taste, Antique World. This is where the party at. The only thing we came away with this time was the blue glass bud vase below. Why just the vase? Because the selection at Antique World is so vast that sometimes – you just have to walk away. The vintage, greek key tea cups I found at St. Vincent De Paul Thrift Store off of Broadway. The grand total for all three items? $12.00.

Last, but not least – here’s where the living room is at after this weekend. The Green Machine is in place and looks beautiful in his (it’s a boy!) new home.

The throw pillows are handmade. The rug was $27.99 at Ross. It’s not a permanent solution but will serve a purpose for the time being.

Lastly – there was a quote from this BEAUTIFUL house tour on Apartment Therapy that spoke to the impatience we feel when it comes to putting our stamp on our home:

“Take a lot of time to let your space develop. Be patient. Our house changes all the time. I am constantly storing art and textiles and rotating other pieces in. Also, be okay with things not being perfect or just as your want them – your home should evolve as you do.”

Let’s evolve together, little home.