Country style, country love, country life. Sharing my inspired, vintage, rustic DIY designs and decor on my blog.


Well, the New Year’s Cash Giveaway is history! I am not sure who won yet, that will be posted shortly, but congrats!! Even though I wasn’t eligible to win the cash, since I was one of the sponsors, I feel like I did win, because I made a whole lot of new Facebook friends : ) I, myself, hardly ever enter any contests because, frankly, I never win anything. (Well, maybe because I never enter anything…) BUT, last week I happened to see a posting to win an iPhone docking station from Docksmith

Docksmith Logo

on Facebook,  and imagine that-I won!!! This company, based in Brunswick, Maine, takes all-natural pieces of driftwood and rootwood and transforms them into functional docking stations for your electronic devices-brilliant! (Ironically, I had actually blogged about this very company last year

Docksmith @ Fair

when I encountered their booth at the Castleberry Fair) Actually, these are pieces of organic art that you can display anywhere, but it just so happens that you can recharge your battery as well. If we are going to live with hard-edged technology all around us, we may as well make it softer and prettier, right? This is the one I received.

Docksmith iPhone 5 Docking Station

Brilliant packaging, BTW. I love it when companies actually say THANK YOU. (OK, I know, I didn’t actually purchase this, but it was nice anyway : )

Docksmith Packaging

This is a striking piece of soft gray driftwood that has been left in its natural state but with the middle drilled out and a docking station affixed inside. Now, instead of leaving my phone hanging around and searching for it whenever it rings, beeps or buzzes, it sits upright in its docking station in the kitchen, soaking up battery juice and in plain sight. They make endless combinations of pieces to fit your smartphones and smartpads. So, I got to thinking that I could actually design an entire room around this one accessory! With the style options, I could do a nautical theme-can you imagine this piece with room enough for two…

Docksmith Double Smartphones #170

perched on this desk?

Coastal Home via Zeroenergy
Zeroenergy Design via

Or a rustic but light log cabin with this one

Snap It Photography
Snap It Photography via

with this birch log beauty?

Docksmith iPhone Birch Log #162How about a warm, cozy fireside space

SFB Girl via

with a darker, more organic piece that would sit perched on the table or mantel?

Docksmith #123 iPad Mini or Galaxy Pad

Or a water-view retreat

DKOR Interiors Via

(where you can tweet) on this double-docking driftwood stationDocksmith Double Driftwood

The design is naturally flawless. The design possibilities are endless. Thanks to Docksmith for offering this giveaway! I guess the moral of this story is, if you don’t enter, you can’t win. Hope you all have a winning day today…Susan

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This is a quick aside from my typical DIY blogging kind of posts. Today I receive a Facebook notification that my son had posted this video on my news feed along with the comment“oh, man this. I LOVE YOU MOM”  Just watch this Sochi 2014 video from Proctor & Gamble. If you have ever been a mom, or hope to be one, or had an awesome one who picked you up, wiped you off, cleaned you up, cheered you on, iced you down, hugged you in victory, held you & kissed your tears away in defeat, then this is meant for you.

Sochi 2014 Proctor & Gamble



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Time Out!


Coach and I took time out of our busy holiday schedule to attend another Crown Auction on Sunday. After the auction, where we scored 3 awesome pieces of vintage furniture, including this little beauty,

French Provincial Side Table

I remarked to Coach how happy I am to see all of the old, worn, broken, dusty, tired items being purchased for re-use and re-purposing. Perhaps even 10 years ago, you would have seen many of the furniture items that were sold on Sunday in someone’s trash pile-unloved and unwanted. But, with the resurgence of DIY and so many new painting and finishing techniques on the blogs and Pinterest, everything old is new again! Case in point: Coach found this little child’s TIME OUT chair that was ready for the trash heap at a local yard sale.

Time Out Chair Before

It was weathered, gray and faded, and looked like it had been set outside in a time out corner years ago.But, with a thorough cleaning, some fresh paint, some crackle glaze and a pretty new cushion, this time out chair is now a comfortable fireside chair for reading or even playing some video games.

Time Out Chair with Bear PM

Here is the how-I-did-it:

1.Cleaned the chair and sanded lightly just to even the surface and get rid of the raised TIME OUT lettering.

2. Added a base coat of Glidden Gripper Glidden Gripperprimer to seal it.

3. Used Martha Stewart crackle medium all over the piece.

Martha Stewart Crackle Effect

Just brush over the base coat wherever you want the top coat to crackle to give an aged appearance and expose the base coat. The heavier coat of the glaze you paint on, the deeper and larger the cracks will appear. For the complete DIY info on that process, click here:

4. Added the top coat, in this case a Behr Paint pot in pale aqua blue I had picked up at Home Depot for a previous project. Those little pots of paint go a long way!

Time Out Chair Base CoatWhen you first brush it on over the base coat and glaze, it just looks like a painted piece. But slowly, the cracks begin to emerge.

Time Out Chair Crackle FinishYou can see that I left the seat unpainted, as I am adding a seat cushion to it. But notice the uneven paint, the cracks and crackles. This is the weathered effect I was going for.

Time Out Chair Crackled Finish

5. Instead of re-creating this as a TIME OUT chair, I wanted to create a welcoming spot for a small child. So I fashioned a little cushion using some foam core board that was cut to the size of the seat of the chair, some poly batting and a piece of black and white toile I had on hand.

Time Out Chair with cushion6. Since I wanted the toile to appear a faded blue, I decided to dye it with some diluted paint, the same color as the chair. (You know how you splatter latex paint on your nice new jeans and then you can’t get it off, ever? Same thing applies here.) I just added some paint to a bowl of warm water and stirred til mixed.

Time Out Chair paint and water mixture

7.Dropped in the fabric and allowed to soak for a couple of minutes to absorb the paint.

Time Out Chair fabric in paint bath

8. Rinsed it thoroughly until the water ran clear but there was just a hint of blue in the fabric. Wanted to make sure no-one ended up with a little blue butt! Then threw it in the dryer on high heat to set the color.

Time Out Chair rinsing fabric

9. I pressed it out and added some fusible interfacing just to stiffen it a bit to hold its shape.

Time Out Chair Fusible Interfacing

10. Attached the fabric to the foam core board and then attached that to the chair with some hot glue to keep it securely in place.

Time Out Chair Back

There you have it! A perfect little fireside seat for a special little someone. So, the next time you see an old piece of furniture that has seen better days, take a time out and think about the endless DIY possibilities!

Time Out Chair with Bear PM

And now it’s time to head out and hit the stores before we get buried in fresh snow! Hope you won’t have a lot of shoveling to do! Susan


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New Year Sign

Happy New Year everyone! To kick off 2014, I have teamed up with so many amazing blogging, Facebook and Etsy friends to sponsor a cash giveaway by Toadstool Pond and Junky, Funky, Rusty & Re-purposed by Sue! This is the link (and you can also find it on my Facebook page as well if you would like to share it-and please do!)

Just click on it, visit the sponsor pages and “like” them on Facebook, fill out your contact info, and done. That’s it! You won’t get any residual emails, we don’t use your info for any purpose other than to contact you if you win (Or should I say, WHEN you win : ) The contest runs from Jan 1, 2014 through Jan 7, 2014 . 4 prizes will be awarded including a $500 first place cash prize! Which means more $$$ to go buy new junky stuff to repurpose and re-love. So put on your lucky shoes, kick 2013 to the curb and start the new year off right! Good luck! Susan

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I could bore you all with my 2013 retrospective of my favorite or most popular blogs, but I will spare you the time on this New Year’s Eve, when I am certain you have better, more exciting things to do tonight. But, unlike some of you revelers, New Year’s celebrations have never been too successful in our lives, beginning with the very first one Coach and I celebrated together so many years ago. That Dec 31, way back before Dick Clark was the emcee to be in NYC,

Times Square New Year's Eve Flight Center

I attempted to make my very first pot roast (Coach’s favorite). It cooked for hours, and hours, and hours, until we finally decided to eat it before the ball dropped at midnight. That evening, we dined on what essentially was a browned rubber basketball.

Pot Roast Burned

But being young, and in love, Coach graciously choked it down and we popped the cork at midnight (a little champagne goes a long way…)

Champagne Popping

Over the years, we have attempted to celebrate in style, hosting dinner parties and game nights, even venturing into First Night in Boston. But almost always we ended up home before midnight, yawning and trying desperately to stay awake until Auld Langs Syne was played. So what’s cooking this year? Not much, I’m afraid. I am working until pretty late in the evening, meaning no prepping or party hosting for me. We will most likely grab a pizza or Chinese food when I get home and try to stay awake until midnight, quite happily saying goodbye to 2013 and welcoming in this brave new year with open arms. You see, 2013 has not been such a great year for our ourselves, our friends and our families. By my own declaration on last year’s blog post, 2013 was supposed to be The Year of Fun!

plane soaring

It read, and I quote:“If there is an opportunity to learn, create, travel, design, teach, cook, dine, soar, entertain or be entertained, count me in! Time for a fresh start and a new perspective, time for some fun!” We were going to laugh more, travel more, be a bit more daring, maybe even take the kayaks out for another spin.

Kayaking- The Launch

So, in reflection, on this last day of 2013, how did the year turn out in the end? Allow me to start by saying that there were some very bright moments in the past 365 days. Our family & friends have experienced so many high notes this year with new jobs, an eye-opening mission trip to a Dominican Republic orphanage through Mustard Seed Communities,

Mustard Seed Mission Trip Village

new business ventures (thank you Vintage Thymes Monthly Market),

Vintage Thymes Market Shop

new babies (sweet, adorable Elsie : )


moves to the West Coast,

PG Photos

an improbable World Series victory,

Victorious Victorino

and running faster then ever before to qualify for The Boston Marathon (not me, definitely not me!).

Boston MarathonAnd even in the aftermath of this year’s marathon bombings we found hope, when Boston came together as one city to capture a fugitive

Boston Strong Logo

and celebrate who we are as a community.

The Next 26.

There were joyous celebrations of young new lives together

Bridal Party Dockside

and new babies on the way (making their debut in 2014), which all helped to brighten our days. But with that joy came much sorrow that cast a pall over our everyday lives, including job losses, saying farewell to our beloved old girl, Daisy


and devastating illnesses in our inner circle of dear friends, who fight onward and bravely with amazing grace, demonstrating incredible strength of spirit every single day.


So, as the clock ticks on, I am most definitely not declaring another year of fun (certainly dropped the ball on that one). Instead, I am simply hoping that we are all blessed with a new beginning each day, and given an opportunity, we gladly extend a hand, grant a wish, give a hug and express our love and gratitude for the people in our lives.

Ball in Times Square

And, unlike Coach and me, who have totally dropped the ball on New Year’s celebrations, if you do venture out tonight, be careful, be safe and have a great beginning to 2014! Susan

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Inspired. Rustic. New Country Style.


Welcome To Country Design Home!

Inspired. Rustic. New Country the suburbs. Because you don't have to live on a farm to create a warm and inviting country-styled home. Follow my DIY junkin' journey as I give tips of the trades and inspired fresh country design ideas to create your own Country Design Home.

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