We’re Back – Random Stuff

Happy New Year friends! 

We hope you had a most Merry Christmas and a joyous New Year.

We can hardly believe it’s been almost two weeks since we blogged. That’s the longest we’ve ever taken off. After moving only 11 days before Christmas and then hosting family for several days (which was a blast!), we sure needed time just to snuggle up and watch movies.

Not to mention shop.

We’ve moved seven times before this (mostly when it was just Dean and I when I was in college), but it’s easy to forget how much stuff you need when you move into a new space.

Like a bathmat. And then another bath mat when the first bath mat is useless and your mother falls in the shower. Yeah. Good times. (So sorry, Mom!).

And a microwave. And then another microwave when the first one dies two weeks after you buy it. Yup. Totally true story.

I feel like all we’ve done since we moved here is shop.

Shop for a TV, a couch, Christmas presents, kitchen cabinets, dressers, shelves, stools, lighting. We rented a U-Haul cargo van one day. The couch was delivered before Christmas. The dishwasher was delivered today.

The neighbors must think we’re nuts!

Now Dean has a boat load of work to do – install a few kitchen cabinets, a dishwasher, lights, new countertops, the new over-the-range microwave.

Oh and he has to build us a dining room table. We’re eating from a folding plastic one. Stylin’.

But it hasn’t been all shopping. I’ve also done a lot of thinking over these two weeks.

I’ve thought about you, dear reader, and this blog a LOT.

I’ve thought about how much pressure I felt last year to do more, to tackle a project just so you’d have something to read about, to be everywhere online, for the blog to come first…and how guilty I felt when I missed something or couldn’t create something or was short with the kids because I just had to finish a post.

And I have to let that go.

We have three children, Dean and I. Children we homeschool, nonetheless. We have friends and wonderful small groups. Family and well, life.

And we have a new house.

A new house full of potential. But I’m impatient. I want it all finished now.

But that’s not realistic.

Life itself must come first.

The projects will get done – and believe me you’ll hear all about them! But they will get done around curling and AWANA and church and all the other wonderful things that make up real life.

Because if I’m not honest and realistic with you about where WE fit the projects in – how will I ever expect you to feel inspired enough to tackle your own house, in the midst of your own busy life?

Here’s to a full, but life-focused 2013!


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Time to Chat

  1. 1


    Wonderful post, Shannon. I took a little break over Christmas and feel so refreshed . I do agree that life comes first and then the blog. Love reading your blog!

  2. 3

    Amy @ Paint Wine Repeat says

    I took a break over December and took some time to reflect as well – Life does come first. Love reading your blog!

  3. 5


    Wonderfully honest post! Life definitely takes priority. I haven’t blogged in a few weeks, but I think I’m okay with that. I’ll get back at it soon.

  4. 7

    Juanita says

    Hi Shannon and Dean, I am not a “poster” of comments generally, but I do love reading your blog. Thank you for everything you share – you are inspiring and creative and I enjoy every post. And I am absolutely in agreement with you that LIFE should be the first priority for everyone. One day, those three children will be grown up and in their own homes (ack!). Go ahead and enjoy them and each other…I’ll be here whenever you have something new to share as will all of your readers! It would make me happy knowing that you are doing it on your schedule, which will hopefully make it more enjoyable for you too!! Happy New Year!

  5. 9

    Memaw0624 says

    I am probably one of your older reader, (mid 50’s)- hopefully for a good while yet. hahah. But for real, you are letting us into your life (sharing), not giving us your life. Keep this thought in mind when you get stressed. You must take care of your life or this site will not be here at all. I do look forward to your posts. I have even done a few of your projects. (I have only been on your mail list a short while) Your life is definitely interesting and your projects great. I promise if you don’t post every day or even every week, I will still be here. And I totally understand I have a husband, 2 grown children, 4 grandchildren, house, and a job. Notice where the job is in my list,. I am sure glad you enjoy your job too.

  6. 11

    Thistle says

    So glad you are back! Happy New Year to you! Can’t wait to see all your projects with your new house!


  7. 13

    Kelli says

    Shannon, you and Dean are so awesome! You are making the best choices for your family. Love that you included making time for AWANA in there. That is something that will be with your kids forever! I so look forward to reading your blog, and will happily wait with anticipation for each new post. You have inspired much creativity with myself and my husband, who is also named Dean 😉 but I’m so happy to hear that your most important project is the family God has given you. Thank you for putting these thoughts on your blog, and I wish you and your family a most spectacular new year!!!

    • 14

      aka design says

      Thank you So much, Kelli! Our kids have done Awana for years – they still love it. Dean and I actually use it as a date night too. Great program! All the best to you and your Dean!

  8. 15


    Congratulations on your new home, Shannon! I’m glad I popped over here today. I relate to this post a lot. In fact, just yesterday, I wrote a post about why managing a blog and raising a young family can leave you feeling bonkers! There are certainly days when I question why I do it, but then I get inspired and encouraged again by the fantastic community of home decor bloggers and enthusiasts out there! It’s a balancing act, for sure! Can’t wait to see what you do with your new abode! Happy 2013! ~ Kerri

    • 16

      aka design says

      Thank you, Kerri! I love being a home and DIY blogger…an I love my family. Just finding the balance! xo.

  9. 17


    Shannon – you should DEFINITELY put life first! I love reading your posts but at the end of the day I appreciate them regardless of how frequent they are.

    Looking forward to seeing the transformation of your new place!