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DIY Fireplace

DIY Projects

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For as long as I can remember I have thought about how cool it would be to have a fireplace in my bedroom, but for whatever reason the thought of building one never crossed my mind. Even as a little girl my grandmother had a fireplace in her bedroom and I loved sitting in front of it after taking a bath!

I think the biggest hurdle for me was thinking it had to be a gas fireplace in order to look real and put out heat, but that’s not the case! Electric fireplaces have come a long way. They look real, have a beautiful sleek design, and are amazing at heating up a room! This meant I could easily DIY a fireplace in my bedroom, and I have to say this is at the top of my list of favorite DIY projects! I decided to go with Dimplex 25″ Multi-Fire XD™ Firebox w/ Acrylic Ember Media Bed

One of the reasons this firebox was at the top of my list is it’s plug and play. You literally just plug it into an outlet and you’re good to go! It also only pushes heat out in the front so you don’t need to worry about the wall behind getting hot! 

 

For this project I decided to build a floor to ceiling shiplapped fireplace for a big impact! The first step was to build the frame. My husband and I built a simple box frame out of 2×4’s and wood screws. We made sure to include a vertical 2×4 in the center to mount the TV to. We also added a small shelf inside the frame to hold the TV cable box.

 

After the frame was finished it was time to cover everything with shiplap. In our experience the pre-made MDF shiplap boards are the easiest to use and have the cleanest look, so that’s what we used! We simply cut the shiplap boards to size and secured them to the frame with 2″ brad nails. We finished off the corners with some simple corner trim for a nice clean look.

 

When it came time to paint, I knew I wanted to go bold and have a color that really popped against my white walls. I picked my favorite Tricorn Black by Sherwin-Williams. It was the perfect choice and gave me the sleek modern look I was hoping for!

After building this fireplace and realizing how much I use it I wish I would have tacked this project sooner!

                 -Grey Birch Designs-

Cookware/Bakeware Early Access Sale

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My favorite cookware brand just launched a line of bakeware and are running an early access sale available only through this link! 

This is the only cookware we use in our home and have for years! Its non-toxic cookware/bakeware with a modern design in a great selection of popular colors! Right now you can save up to 20% off your purchase here. This is the ONLY sale Caraway will be running this year, these sets make great gifts too!

 

Save up to 20% on Caraway cookware and bakeware here, no code needed the discount automatically applies through my link!

Cookware/Bakeware

 

-Grey Birch Designs-

Zulily Gift Guide

Uncategorized

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One of my favorite placed to find great deals on gifts for the Holidays or anytime of year is Zulily. Right now with my code: hellonov21 you can get FREE shipping on any order over $45. Code expires on 11/7 at midnight PST 

I have put together a gift guild round up on my favorite Zulily finds for woman below. These are all a fantastic value made even better with the FREE SHIPPING code!

 

 

 

Adidas Shoes

Plaid Quilted Jacket

MUK LUK Boot

Hurley Mixed Media Jacket

Flowerbomb Parfum

Stripe Sweater

Sunglasses

Plaid Zip-Up Jacket

Earrings

Halloween Mudroom Decor

Seasonal Decor

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Halloween is a big deal at our house. I tend to go big with the decor because my kids get so excited!! I have wanted to decorate a mudroom for my kids for years, the problem is until about 6 months ago we didn’t have a mudroom. Our home’s floorpan didn’t have come with one so in February of this year we decided to convert our hall closet into a much needed mudroom! You can checkout that project here! Now because of this I finally get to create the spooky mudroom I have been wanting to do for years!

The first thing I did was look for some witches capes and hats, I wanted these to hang on the hooks of the lockers in the mudroom. I found the perfect ones at Walmart that were super affordable, but to dress them up just a bit I had a sparkly tulle and black lace cut to size from the fabric department at Walmart.

 

I also wanted to add some spooky decor to the top of the lockers so I grabbed a faux skull and these adorable baskets. These are great because they match my Halloween decor but the are also practical storage I will continue to use all year long! Finally I add some bats to the wall and a seasonal sign. I also made some DIY witches brooms that were so easy and fun to make! Check out how I made them here!

The best part of this whole mudroom Halloween makeover was my kids had no idea I was doing this while they were at school and when they came home they were so surprised! My littlest one had the biggest smile on his face when he went to put his backpack away. You can watch my video here to see how I put this whole space together!

 

I had a blast decorating this space and my kids loved it too. Halloween time is such a fun time of year and we celebrate it all month long around here!!

 

-Grey Birch Designs-

Fall Outdoor Dining + Chili Recipe

Collaborations

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Growing up in sunny southern California where every day is 75 degrees was something I definitely took for granted. These days I love being outside in our backyard, watching our kids play, and having dinner outside on the patio. Now that we live in Utah we can’t do this year round, only a handful of months a year. This year I decided to try something that would make it possible to enjoy dining outside a bit longer, even through the cooler months of Fall!

 

 

We built our outdoor dining area a couple years ago – I can’t believe how far the backyard has come! We had the cement pad poured and built a covered gazebo with a dining set underneath. I decorated the space with outdoor string lights, hanging basket lights, a cute rug, and some real and faux plants. The one thing I didn’t until this year was an outdoor heater.

 

 

 

 

I hesitated in the past because all the heaters I have seen before were larger and took up too much space. Since this area is only 10ft x 10ft, space is a huge factor. That’s when I came across the Dimplex DIRP15A10GR. It’s an electric plug and go mountable heater! It’s the perfect solution for this area. We mounted it inside the roofline of our gazebo and it was super easy to do. We just plumed it in and we were ready to go! This particular model is also remote controlled, which was a huge selling point for me.

 

One of these units is enough to heat a 10ft x 10ft space so it worked out perfectly! This will now make it possible to enjoy our outdoor dining space through the Fall and I could’t be happier about it. I see lots of chili and cornbread, soups, and stews being enjoyed out here this year!

If your family is like ours chili is a staple when the weather cools down and there is only one recipe I have that everyone loves, even my picky eaters!

                       -Grey Birch Designs-

Chili Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Additional Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 1 pound ground turkey or beef
  • 1 onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 15-oz. cans diced or crushed tomatoes
  • 2 14-.5 oz. kidney cans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 15-oz. can beef broth
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Sour cream and shredded cheddar cheese for topping!

Instructions

    1. Heat 1-2 tablespoons olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Saute onion, garlic, and ground turkey until meat is cooked through.
    2. Add salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder, brown sugar, and unsweetened cocoa powder. Add the tomatoes, beans, and beef broth.
    3. Heat to boiling and then reduce to a simmer (uncovered), stirring occasionally, until thickened as desired (I like it about 30-40 minutes)
    4. Top with sour cream and shredded cheese, serve hot with fresh cornbread!

Notes

Recipe modified/inspired by Our Best Bites

Fall Dining Room Decor + Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

Seasonal Decor

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Fall is making its appearance around our home and I couldn’t be happier. This is my favorite time of year! I love the crisp cool air, the sweaters and boots, pumpkin spice everything, and of course the Fall decor!

 

I love the warm color palette Fall brings to my home – it instantly gives it such a cozy vibe! This year I’m drawn to deep burgundy, gold, cream, and rust colors for the season. My dining room was one of the first places I decided to decorate this year, and that meant a trip to Walmart. It’s one of my favorite places to find affordable decor and this season they didn’t disappoint

 

Walmart is where I found my all time favorite dish set. They are great year round, but with the gold rim on this set and color palette I’m going with this Fall, they are perfect. I wanted to do a mixed table setting so I paired them with the black Onyx Stoneware set with the same gold detail around the edge that I love so much! These two sets together are beautiful and can be dressed up or dressed down for casual dining!

 

                                  

Next, I put together the centerpiece. I found the perfect dried eucalyptus in the deep burgundy color I’m loving right now. I grabbed a few bunches to add to my vase for a warm, classic feel for my dining room centerpiece.

    

I didn’t need a lot to make this space feel like Fall and I didn’t need to spend much either thanks to the prices at Walmart! The only thing missing to get fully into the season is my favorite Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies! I have been making this same recipe every year since my kids were little. It’s going on 15 years now and we all look forward to it each year! Here’s my favorite Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe:

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 27 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1.5 cups chocolate chips

Instructions

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with a baking mat. Combine pumpkin, sugar, vegetable oil, vanilla and egg in a large bowl. Mix until smooth.

    Add flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, pumpkin spice and salt. Mix until all combined. Stir in chocolate chips, don't over mix.

    Use a cookie scoop or spoonfulsof the dough and place them about 2 inches apart. Bake for 10-13 minutes, or until a toothpick comes clean.

    Remove from oven and let cool on pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack.

Easy Summertime Treat – Homemade Ice Cream Sandwiches

Recipes

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What are your favorite things about summer? For our family it’s swimming, boating, riding bikes and of course eating lots of ice cream! I recently picked up this ice cream maker from Walmart and it has been the best purchase. With ice cream being my kids’ treat of choice it’s been getting a lot of use!

 

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Window Treatments – Why we went with Shutters

Collaborations

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One of the most important elements of interior design and many times overlooked is window treatments. They are not only necessary for privacy, but they can also make a major statement and bring your home’s design to the next level.

In my home I installed Polywood® Shutters from Sunburst Shutters on just about every window. I love the clean, modern lines that fit my style perfectly.This type of window treatment brings a classic elegance to each room that will never go out of style.

The Polywood® Shutters are the perfect choice because they are 100% custom made to fit each window. They are also made in the USA and specifically engineered with a durable recyclable solid wood substitute; so they won’t chip, crack, warp, or split.

The installation was easy and painless. Sunburst Shutters sent out someone to take all the measurements and place the order. Then when my custom shutters were ready they delivered and installed them. One feature that sets Polywood® Shutters apart from other plantation shutters is they are extruded with an exclusively patented weather stripping, which adds another layer of window insulation. We all know that windows are a primary source of heat gain/loss inside a home, but these shutters have weather-stripping along each side to provide optimal window insulation, blocking more temperature and light than any other shutter.

This was a big selling point for me because my daughter’s and twin son’s rooms at the front of our home are greatly affected by the heat of the summer sun and the cold of the winter

 

We have now gone through our first winter with these new shutters in our home. I can say from first hand experience that there was a noticeable temperature difference in my kids’ bedrooms. They are a world of difference from the basic blinds we used to have!

 

 

There are a ton of window treatment options out there and I’m super happy with my decision.

These new shutter are the perfect fit for my home and my design style. Plus they are a true classic that never goes out of style!! Now I’m on to the next design project!

-Grey Birch Designs-

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