My Snowball Tree Love Story

vintage vignette

It's that time of year again when my snowball tree is laden with blooms and reminding me of this sweet story from a couple of years ago.  ---------------- He came over and stood next to me as I looked out the back window. "What are you looking at Mama?" he asked. (He's almost 11 but he still calls me mama and I LOVE it!) "I'm watching Daddy get some clippings from the snowball tree for me to bring into the house", I replied. "Why does he have the ladder and those long clippers?" … [Read more...]

The Peace-Filled Home Part 4

the peace filled home series from

I've often wished that it didn't take experiencing the hard things in life for me to grow as a person. I mean, wouldn't it be so much nicer if depth could be added to our souls while we lie on the beach sipping margaritas? But the only divine revelation I'm likely to have in that scenario is that I need to take a nap. The reality for most of us is that it's only when we walk through really challenging seasons that we come to a greater understanding of who we are....the good, the bad and the … [Read more...]

Aged Galvanized Metal Tray

Galvanized tray decor for spring

The title of this blog post should really read, "The aged galvanized metal tray that really didn't want to age." And maybe it's the fact that I turned 40 this year that made me feel a lot of sympathy towards this tray and its unwillingness to let me give it a faux aged look even while I was cursing it under my breath. … [Read more...]

Creating Success at Home Giveaway

Creating Success at Home 2D book cover

In theory, being a homemaker or working from home sound like a piece of cake. Because, well, if you want you can just eat a piece of cake whenever it strikes your fancy. But, like so many other things in life, reality is often very different than the fantasy. I think that there are more of us who struggle with how to be managers of our home than we care to admit. Which is why I was so thrilled when I found out that my wonderful friend Sharon, author of the blog Mrs. Hines' Class was writing a … [Read more...]

Broken Fountain Turned Tiered Planter

tiered outdoor fountain turned garden planter

Happy Saturday friends! I'm so excited to bring this old post back to life and show you how I turned a broken fountain into a fantastic tiered planter. You know those pictures that look one way when you are standing further back but as you get closer you see that the image is really completely different? Like where you think you're looking at a painting of a beautiful lake but when you get closer you realize that it's a giant elephant....or something like that. ;-) You know what I'm … [Read more...]

The Peace-Filled Home Part 3

beauty of a home quote

(If you are just now joining us for The Peace-Filled Home series be sure to read part one and part two) I believe that a peace-filled home begins with a peace-filled heart. This is the foundation, the solid rock, which you can rely on to help you experience peace even in the midst of the craziness. Having a home built on peace is what sustains us in the busy schedules, the unpredictable events and the roller coaster that is life. A peace-filled home is a gift that you give to all of those … [Read more...]

The Peace Filled Home Series

the peace filled home series from

Have you ever started something with the best of intentions only to have the craziness of life keep you from finishing it? I like to think of myself as someone who will always see a thing through to the end but I realized recently that sometimes I start out with a lot of gusto only to come up short. Case in point...last year I launched a new series here At the Picket Fence called 'The Peace-Filled Home' and managed to give you only two installments before we found ourselves up to our eyeballs … [Read more...]

Vintage Style Canvas Map

Old World Style Map

I've been on the lookout for a vintage map for awhile now. And I realized something very important about myself as I haunted consignment stores and online sources. When it comes to bigger purchases, I suffer from 'must-be-able-to-return-it-if-it-doesn't-work-itis'. The struggle is real people.   … [Read more...]

A Stroll Through the Garden


Good morning, from! The birds are singing lovely tunes, the ice has melted away, and I see my green tulip tips breaking through the cold, cracked soil. My funny cat, Sylvia, is having a blast in the windows running back and forth like a lunatic watching her friend Charlie, the chipmunk, and...I am so ready to clean the "road salt" from the interior of my car. Thank goodness, SPRING HAS FINALLY SPRUNG. … [Read more...]

When You Don’t Feel Easter-y

blueberry muffins in a spring vignette

I was determined this week that I would write words to you which are very spiritual and very uplifting and very Easter-y. I would tell you about what Holy Week means to me and how I've spent it in God's word and doing all kind of resurrection crafts with my children and then they listened to me with unwavering attention as I read the story from scripture. But, as I sit here staring at a blank page in front of me, I'm struck by the fact that it hasn't really felt like that holy of a week … [Read more...]

French Country Wall Clock

French country style wall clock in living room

My husband and I were talking the other day about this magical thing that transpires when we get one-on-one time with our kids. And these days with our almost teenager, its almost as if he becomes a different person. Gone is the attitude and the eye rolling and the one word (usually sarcastic) answers and in their place is laughter and fun and great conversation. … [Read more...]

Spring is a Tween


As I type these words, I'm keenly aware of the fact that if I were to look out of the windows on one side of my house I would see blue skies, puffy clouds and sunshine. But, I'm just as aware of the fact that if I were to look out of the windows on the opposite side of my house I would see a sky that was so dark it's almost black, and ominous clouds full of rain. … [Read more...]

Dreaming in Season

Dream come true quote by Vanessa Hunt

The zoo field trip. It's the highlight of 2nd grade and even though I've chaperoned it once before with my son, it all felt new again thanks to the giddy excitement of my daughter. With a car full of bubbly, chatty 7 year old girls, we made the one hour trip from school parking lot to zoo parking lot and quickly joined the rest of the class. We were divided into smaller groups and sent off to explore with plans to meet up again at a designated time.   … [Read more...]

Easter Mantel

Easter mantel with chalkboard art and shutters

If you've spent any time over here you know that I love words. I've tried to do one of those blog posts where it's just pictures but it ends up being about the same as when I'm having a conversation with someone and there are big, long pauses. I can't do it. I simply MUST fill in the gaps! It's a sickness, I tell ya. … [Read more...]

The Father Daughter Ball

father daughter ball invite

"Being a daddy's girl is like having permanent armor for the rest of your life." ~ Marinela Reka She spotted her name on the envelope in the mailbox and couldn't wait to rip it open. We stood at the kitchen island watching her closely and I think she sensed that this was no ordinary card. … [Read more...]

Bamboo Roman Shades in the Family Room

Using curtain panels with woven shades

Growing up, I thought my sister had to be one of the coolest people in the world. Frankly, I still think that. When I was in middle school and she was in high school, I desperately wanted to emulate her style and I loved nothing more than to see her get all dressed up for a dance or a date. This was partly because she knew how to rock the big hair and lace, finger-less gloves like nobody's business but mostly it was because when she would head out for the evening, she allowed me to spend time in … [Read more...]


cherry blossoms 2

The day started out like any other. Up early, guzzling coffee, packing lunches, driving kid number one to school, coming back home, guzzling more coffee, driving kid number two to school then back home again to clean up the house, reply to emails, schedule appointments and return phone calls. By late morning I realized that we needed a few things from the store so I headed out to run my errands before returning home again.   … [Read more...]

Decorating with Thrift Store Silver


Hi guys! It's me again, Julie, from by to say hello and to share some easy and affordable decorating tips with you today! We have 2 sweet daughters who are now in their teen years and one of the ways I love to connect with them, is by going to the thrift store. This would also be something fun grandparents could do with grandchildren, too. … [Read more...]