Photos, photos, photos

Ever think – what do I do with all these photos?  I do love me a good collage of great photos on a gallery wall – but there are only so many walls.  And you know you need to get them off the hard drive on your computer.

My go to solution – My Publisher.  See I have this goal to take great photos of each of my kiddos and make them a photo book each year so they can one day have for their own.

I just recently came home to my latest book for Liam and his 4 year photo book.

Liam's Photo Book from My Publisher

Liam’s Photo Book from My Publisher

Of course my rule of thumb is having to start with great photos to get a coffee table quality photo book.  In our case we have been blessed to have met Rusty Wright, owner of Waldron Photograph Co. , who has captured our family so beautifully over the past couple years.  More on this later because his photos deserve an entire post (or two) but once I have these lovely digital files I hop over to My Publisher and start creating.  Easy to use and only a simple download program to your computer.  You can even have My Publisher create a book for you by placing photos in order when you upload.  I choose to create the books myself and it is still very simple and easy to use.

My first photo book was made after our wedding when purchasing a large photo book wasn’t in our budget.

Photo book from My Publisher

Photo book from My Publisher

My advice – because of course there are many “add-ins” that you can choose to pay extra for – spend a little extra for the lay flat pages.  The super glossy finish is not worth it – but I also prefer more of a matte finish.  Go for the photo cover instead of the photo jacket.

Also – wait for coupons.  No joke, I get great coupons and discounts via email notifications almost weekly from My Publisher.  I can typically get a great photo book for under $50 with the photo cover and lay flat pages.  And if you are a new customer I have noticed a pop-up offer for new customers so check that out!

I typically like to sit my recent photo book out on the coffee table for a while to enjoy and then they go nicely in bookshelf.

Photo books in bookshelf

Photo books in bookshelf

Next dilemma – what to do with all the photos on my iPhone?!…has anyone out there tried Mosaic?  If so, let me know what you think!

Guest Post: Brianne’s Flea Market Finds

One of our friends, Brianne, also has an addiction to the West Bottoms Flea Market. So for today’s guest post, we asked her to share her favorite finds and how she’s used them in her home. As you can see, she’s so creative and has a knack for accessorizing. Jill and I are thrilled to be able to share her post with you because we know you’ll be inspired. Hope you enjoy today’s post, written by Brianne herself – thanks Brianne!

About two and a half years ago I was watching The Nate Berkus Show (RIP, unless you count the reruns on Oprah’s network, which I don’t.)  There was a lady on that was showing how she repurposed furniture and she mentioned having a store in Kansas City called Good JuJu.  She mentioned it being in the West Bottoms, which I only knew as the location of the haunted houses and a cool backdrop for urban style family photos.  A quick Google search showed me that her store was amongst others in the Bottoms, all of which were only open the first weekend of every month which was called Warehouse Weekend.  I hit the next sale to check it out for myself and have missed very few weekends over the years.
Just to show you all that the West Bottoms have to offer, I thought I’d share some of my favorite scores!  All store’s vendors replenish stock throughout the weekend.  Many of my earlier purchases came from Good JuJu.  I purchased this buffet from a vendor there.  She then painted it for me the color I needed.  I love the clean lines and all of the storage it provides.

Refinished Grey Hutch

Refinished Grey Hutch

This turquoise mirror is also one of my Good JuJu finds.

Little Girl's Room

Little Girl’s Room


I custom ordered this bookshelf from a store called Bottoms Up Antique Market.  Bottoms Up has over 60 vendors and four floors.  The vendor had one bookshelf on the floor but could also make them the dimensions you need and with the metal finish you’d like.

Metal Shelf Accessorized

Metal Shelf Accessorized

The tar-stained wood was from a chicken barn and was unfinished, but after living with it for a while I decided to stain it.  The darker look just felt more like me and now I love it even more!

Rustic Stain

Rustic Stain

This milk crate came from a shop called Nook and Cranny.  I love the milk company’s name on the front.  I cleaned it up and filled it with some of my husband’s favorite adult bottles since we don’t have space in our home for an actual bar.  Father’s Day gift success!

Milk Crate

Milk Crate


My most recent purchase was this amazing gold ornate mirror at this month’s sale.  I literally walked/ran to it when I saw it from the doorway of the second floor at Bella Patina because I was so worried that someone else was seeing it at the same time I was.  It was seriously large Marge and although I had no idea where I was going to put it, I knew I had to have it and would figure it out.

Antique Mirror

Antique Mirror

My favorite store by far for antique & vintage shopping in the West Bottoms is Restoration Emporium.  Much of my smaller decorative items have come from here.  From mason jar soap dispensers to décor for every season and holiday, it has everything and is always our first stop.  I came across these vintage bug prints and knew they’d be perfect for my son Rowan’s camp-themed room.  I purchased the wood-grained finish frames from Ikea and hung them above his art table. If you only have time to visit one store in the West Bottoms, Restoration Emporium is a can’t miss.

Little Boy's Room

Little Boy’s Room

Thanks for checking out some of my favorite flea market finds! Hope they’ve inspired you to do some exploring and rethinking for your own home!


Next project – Kid Bookshelves

Liam is about to turn four and this little man has quite the book collection.  The collection is part in thanks to my friends gifting a book in lieu of a card when I had Liam’s baby showers and he receives an abundance of books from his grandparents along with others.  Great problem to have – but finding a new way to store this growing collection of  books is the design dilemma.

Currently, we rotate the books out every couple weeks and store them in his side table / night stand.

Side Table - Stores books / Vintage airplane

Side Table – Stores books / Vintage airplane

If you want to check out Liam’s entire room you can here.

The side table is “fine” but I am wanting a better solution that hold more books and of course on a friendly budget.

I stumbled upon a wonderful blog called The Aestate the other day and loved the bookshelves she just used for her daughters room.

plastic shelf

shelf -2

photo via

Don’t you love them?  Sort of doctor’s office-esque but that is another reason why I like them.

Simple.  Clear.  Inexpensive.  PERFECT.

You can find these puppies here and range from $8.75 per shelf to $13.50 per shelf depending on size.

clear plastic acrylic bookselves 1

photo via

Add in some hardware costs – still a great solution to displaying books and making them easily accessible for little man to reach.  Hoping that he doesn’t think they are climbing mechanisms to scale the wall.

What do you think?!