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2018-01-18T17:53:16.728Z
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I don’t think I’m the only person out there who feels this way, so I might as well just say it … I hate doing laundry. I hate it so much that the only time laundry actually gets done in my house is usually when we are totally out of clean underwear and then the decision is forced upon me. That being said, I’m all for things that make the laundry process more efficient, so I love using wool dryer balls in the dryer to help speed up drying time and also soften the laundry (the wool fibers rub against the fibers in the other garments and help soften them)—all without any harsh chemicals that may be in dryer sheets or fabric softeners! The other awesome thing is that if you like to add a scent to your laundry, you can drop a few drops of essential oils on the balls before drying your clothes and they will smell amazing! Ready to make your own set? It’s super easy …Supplies:
wool roving yarn in several colors (make sure it doesn’t say “washable” wool yarn or it won’t work); one of those yarns is enough for...

Making fun things for Lola’s nursery is one of my joys in life. Kid stuff always feels like it can be more whimsical and fun and you can do just about whatever you want! We have some pastel rainbow toys in Lola’s room (and she has a rainbow in her painted wallpaper as well) and so I thought a ribbon rainbow wall hanging would be a good compliment to the other cute pieces she already has!Supplies:
-white felt balls, large and medium
-white foamcore board
-X-Acto knife and cutting mat
-hot glue gun
-ribbons in rainbow colors (I think grosgrain ribbon works the best for this)
glue on jewelry bails, jump rings, gold chain, and jewelry kit
First, arrange your felt balls in a freeform cloud shape on a white foamcore board (I left the bottom of my cloud more straight to hang the ribbons from). You may want to measure...

Last June, I moved into a basic suburban home straight out of your favorite ’80s teen movie in every way. Okay, so someone did us the favor of removing tired wallpaper and painting everything tan and brown. But we loved how much the peculiar floor plan exactly fit our particular needs, and I was really taken with this grand living room. It didn’t exactly look like a grand space when we moved in, but I saw its potential for the fireplace of my dreams, and was enamored with the tall ceilings complete with skylights and weird sofit-clad nooks on the walls. (You can see the plan of our first floor in this blog post.)

The living room has finally undergone its transformation, and I’m so excited to share the process with you! We now have a bright space with a beautiful stone fireplace that accentuates the high ceilings. Below the fireplace is a long hearth, worthy of any mid-century masterpiece, but still fitting in with our ’80s home. We aren’t shy about the fact that we watch TV, and I decided to show it in all its glory, since this is the family room in our home and hey, our family likes movie nights, and sometimes movie days!

Happy New Year, friends! We’re taking the day off from blogging, but you can still connect with us on social, plus we’re starting our Weekday Weekend challenge today, so check out our stories to follow along. Hope you had a great NYE and are starting off 2018 well. Wishing you lots of peace and love this year! xo. Team ABM

In case anyone is looking for a fun and healthy challenge to try for the new year, we invite you to join us for a four-week Weekday Weekend challenge starting January 1! As many of you know, this past fall we published our first cookbook, Weekday Weekend. It’s not only a cookbook, filled with colorful photos and recipes, it’s also a challenge to encourage you on your healthy eating journey. For me, that’s always been a struggle; I love to eat and I have a hard time following diets or fads. While Elsie and I were dreaming up what this project might be, it was really important to us that it reflect not only our love of food but our REAL way of trying to eat well to encourage lifelong health. And here’s the thing, it’s super easy! You simply follow five rules during the week (five days) and then on the weekend you can take a break and recharge for the coming week. That’s it! If you’ve never tried anything like this before, then this is the challenge for you—it’s not complicated, totally sustainable, and challenging while still being easy to finish. It’s our hope that after you take the challenge once, you add on more challenges to it later, or extend the challenge another week or two. Up to...

Happy (almost) New Year’s, friends! Maybe you’re hosting a get together this weekend or maybe you’re staying in and having a cocktail after your kiddos fall asleep? Whatever you may be up to, we thought it would be fun to put together a little round up of some of our favorite cocktails from the past few years. There’s something here for everyone, and just in case you aren’t drinking this holiday, don’t worry—we’ve got some great mocktail options here.


Nothing says holidays more than mulled wine—love this easy recipe.

Speaking of wine, if you’re looking for a few cute ways to serve wine, check out this NYE wine bar including a DIY for a frozen ice bucket.

Love a classic Old Fashioned, and this one gets a little update with the flavors of smoke and cinnamon.

photo by @keikolynn, edited with Hepburn in #AColorStoryStardust

We’re so excited to share our newest A Color Story filter pack created with Keiko Lynn! I’m sure many of you already know who she is (we’ve been fangirls for years and years), but if you don’t, you have to check out her blog and Instagram feed immediately! Aside from just being an amazingly supportive internet friend to us over the years, she’s a killer photographer and total babe. She has dreamed up some of the most unique filters for A Color Story yet. This pack perfectly captures her vintage vibe by bringing out deep reds while maintaining soft and warm tones, pulling back saturation as necessary.

photo by @keikolynn, edited with Jane in #AColorStoryStardust

photo by @keikolynn, edited with Diana in #AColorStoryStardust

This pack is perfect for...

Of all the holiday decor, New Year’s Eve is one of my favorites for sure! All the gold, glitter, and metallics are totally up my alley and when you add in a few glasses of champagne as well, it’s the perfect evening for me! I love entertaining and one thing you can never have enough of around the house are pretty trays to set food and drinks on. I thought I’d make an easy-but-pretty serving tray to ring in the new year with and here’s how you can make one too!

Supplies:
white tray
gold foil liquid paint
-paintbrush
gold peel and stick vinyl
-painter’s tape
-clear gloss spray
10 point star template

Tape off the perimeter of your tray (the part that you don’t want to be painted) with painter’s tape.

Place your tray outside on...

I love blogging but I don’t really love being on the internet. Let me explain. Creating content, whether it’s recipes or craft tutorials or just photos from a trip I went on, and then sharing that content with others is WAY fun. This is what blogging is, sharing content online. However, in order to be able to do that well I have to own and operate a website. Which means I have to try and navigate the world of domains, hosting, what’s-a-server-again?, site speed, SEO, etc. This stuff can feel pretty overwhelming sometimes, maybe you feel the same? And although I am not an internet expert, I have been blogging for over ten years and I’ve learned a lot during that time. One area I feel I’ve learned a ton in this past year is hosting. Some of you may remember that we moved our website last March and during that transition we also had to change our hosting situation out of necessity. It wasn’t always smooth, and there’s still a lot about our current set up that I don’t feel 100% on. But, like I said, we learned a lot and I have a feeling a lot of you who are also bloggers and website owners deal with these issues too. So, I thought I’d share the best resources that we currently know of when...

I love a good curry. It might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of “comfort food,” but it’s high on my list. I absolutely love the flavors of Thai food and a good curry is just about one of my all-time favorite meals. It’s spicy, it’s creamy, and it’s so easy for it to be plant-based and full of whole grains too— which means it can be a pretty high-protein option for us (mostly) vegetarians. And although I think I started my love of curries with red curry and yellow curry, Massaman is a go-to for me at the moment.

 Massaman Curry, serves 2

1 package of tofu, baked
1 red bell pepper
1 zucchini
1/3 a large red onion
3 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon fresh ginger
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon + 1-2 teaspoons Massaman curry paste
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon brown sugar or maple syrup
1 can coconut milk
1/4 to 1/2 cup water
red pepper flakes, green onion, lime for garnish
1 cup cooked brown rice

First, bake the tofu. See here for my favorite method. You can...

This year is quickly coming to a close (what?!) and so we thought it would be fun to take a look back at some of YOUR favorite posts from the year. I’ve compiled this list from each month’s favorites based on page views as well as engagement (like pins, shares, and comments), and it was really fun for me to look back to not only see what you all loved, but also DANG, did a lot happen this year!

One pretty common thing I noticed is that you all LOVE room tours. And we had plenty of those this past year. Elsie gave a before and after tour of her Nashville kitchen.  We actually had a bunch of bathroom tours this year too … I guess we were in the mood to fix up our get-ready spaces. I shared a before and after tour of my master bathroom renovation. Elsie shared her home’s master bathroom, her Airbnb master bathroom,...

With 2018 just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about how you want to ring in the new year. For me, the desserts I’ll be making (and eating) for the occasion are typically the first thing I think about … which may or may not be a good thing. Don’t judge me! To celebrate this year, I thought that I’d make some disco ball cupcakes because what goes more perfectly with NYE than shiny, glittery disco balls?!

You might think these are cupcakes topped with fondant tiles at first glance, but NOPE, no fondant on here! Believe it or not, there isn’t anything on top of these aside from buttercream frosting and a little edible glitter. I’ve covered all the details below; follow along so that you too can start the new year off on the sweetest, sparkliest note. Disco Ball Cupcakes, makes 12 cupcakes

1 box chocolate cake mix
silver cupcake liners

For the buttercream frosting:
2 cups unsalted butter, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
black gel food coloring
edible...

We’re taking the day off to spend time with family, but we wanted to pop in and wish you all a very happy holiday! Wishing lots of peace and joy your way, and from the bottom of our hearts, thank you so much for reading our site this past year. It truly means the world to us! xo. Team ABM

It’s beginning to look a lot like cocktails (I mean Christmas) over here! Entertaining during the holidays can sometimes be stressful and overwhelming. That’s why it’s important to have some large format drink recipes up your sleeve. Enter my Spiced Cranberry Punch. I love using fresh cranberries in baking, cooking, and cocktails during the holiday season. Cranberries are tart, tangy, and have lots of complex flavors which make them perfect for mixing in your holiday drinks. Cranberry juice is usually sweetened or blended with other fruit juices to reduce its natural tartness and has more sugar than most soda does. I’m going to show you how easy it is to make fresh cranberry juice (without all that added sugar) at home to use in my festive Spiced Cranberry Punch recipe.

Spiced Cranberry Juice

4 (12 oz.) bags frozen or fresh cranberries
8 cups of water
10 sprigs of fresh rosemary
1 orange
2 cinnamon sticks
2 star anise
1/2 tsp. whole cloves

To make the cranberry juice, combine the cranberries with...

Are any of you last minute gift makers? It’s OK if you’re raising your hand right now because we’ve put together a list of awesome DIY gift ideas that take 24 hours or less to complete (many of them a lot less). So if you’ve got a few folks left on your to-get-gifts-for list, here are a few ideas of things you could make them for the holidays this year.

Who doesn’t love a great at-home spa night? Just add some homemade bath salts to a warm bath then add a glass of wine or a good book (or both!). Give the gift of relaxation this season. (Too far? I kind of felt it, but I was sort of into it so I just typed it anyway. FORGIVE ME.)

Add a little sparkle to a winter hat with this Beaded Beanie DIY.

For those loved ones who seem to...

Anybody else a fan of “The Big Lebowski” movie? Thanks to Jeff Bridges, we’ve been drinking White Russian cocktails for years here in the Gummerman house (it’s a drink his character loves in the movie), so I’m pretty familiar with that flavor profile already. I thought it would be a fun holiday twist to add some peppermint goodness to the White Russian and make it the signature drink at our upcoming holiday hangout.

Peppermint White Russian, serves one

4 oz Kahlua
2 oz peppermint vodka
splash of half and half
peppermint sticks for garnish

Start by placing a few peppermint sticks into a plastic bag. Use a hammer (a pink one preferably!) to gently break up the sticks into little pieces.To make some peppermint ice cubes, fill an ice cube tray almost to the top with water and freeze (those big ice cube...

This one is for all you plant ladies out there. Go on, raise your hand with me. It’s OK if you are a plant lady who also tends to kill your indoor plants (shhhhh … me too). It’s the thought that counts this time of year, right?

In all seriousness, this super simple DIY ornament is even easier to care for than any indoor plant because, well, it’s fake. Ha! But it looks like you have a tiny little plant baby hanging from your tree and that’s pretty fun, if you ask me. These would make a fun little gift or a really easy craft night project. They require only a handful of supplies and 30 minutes or less to make!

You could easily customize these by painting the pots or adding other little embellishments. As you can see, I decided to add...

Christmas decorating is one of the happiest things that I can think of … all the sparkles and twinkling lights can’t help but lift my mood. Todd and I are both a few states away from our extended family, so I thought it would be a sweet idea to make a display of photos from Christmases past to remind us of all the happy memories this holiday brings. I partnered with Canon USA on this post, and all it took was a few calls to our moms to get all the cute memories I needed!Supplies:
-photo frames in different sizes
-photo paper
Canon PIXMA TS8120
X-Acto knife and cutting mat

Start by resizing and printing your photos the appropriate size for each frame that you want to use. I think it’s fun to have some black and white and some colored, but you could also make them all black and white if the colors didn’t all go well together. It’s great having a printer at home so I can try multiple layouts and photos to see what I like the best! The PIXMA TS8120 prints well on different types...

Hey! It’s Katie and I want to talk about garlands. Oh, how I love them! Are there any others out there like me? I honestly believe you can never have too many. Like, I don’t even have a mantle in our home right now, but I still string them everywherrrrrrre. You can probably tell by my enthusiasm on the subject that this is a post dedicated to the newest garland addition in my home. She is so darn whimsical and pretty. Let me introduce you to: SWAN GARLAND.
Supplies
white Sculpey clay
swan cookie cutter
-parchment paper
-rolling pin
-chopsticks and washi tape (optional but recommended)
-yarn/string and needle
-acrylic paint in white, black, and salmon
-toothpicks
-aluminum foil
-white feathers

Let’s begin! Tape the chopsticks to your parchment paper. My craft table is never clean, so I used a cutting board wrapped in the parchment paper to ensure I had a very smooth surface. Once your rolling area is prepped, grab that Sculpey clay and knead it until it’s soft. Roll the...

Every family has their holiday tradition food that they look forward to every year and I bet eggnog is one of those items for a lot of you. I definitely remember thinking that eggnog sounded like the grossest thing I could possibly imagine as a kid, but as it turns out, it’s pretty delicious! Basically, it’s drinkable boozy custard with all the best holiday spices. And since it’s rich and sweet (and you can buy pretty tasty versions already prepared!), it’s basically the perfect thing to turn into a jello shot! Here’s an easy way to make some for your holiday party! Eggnog Jello Shots, makes 9 shots

1 cup prepared eggnog
1 cup bourbon or rum
2 packets of unflavored gelatin
whipped cream
cinnamon or nutmeg
2 oz mini cups
mini spoons

Add your eggnog to a small pan and heat over medium heat until warm. Sprinkle in the gelatin packets slowly while whisking at the same time. Keep whisking periodically for a few minutes and...