Category: lifestyle

the great white debate

For those of you that don’t know our current situation…we are in the process of moving to the Chicago area. We moved out of our house in Little Rock in November and since then have been staying in a condo until we found a place to move. Well…we have finally set a move date of March 1st (can I get an Amen?!)

This season of being without a house of our own (*read: homeless) has been really difficult for me. At first it was just all a part of the great adventure that is our life but after the novelty wore off cabin fever started to set in. This past year has really been about defining who I am and not being ashamed of ‘me’ so I really started to crave having a space of my own, something that looked like me. That’s why I’m super excited about the fact that our new landlord is allowing us to paint (and choose a new hardwood stain!) so we have the opportunity to really make this house ‘us’.

It didn’t take me long to decide that I wanted white walls. I had already filled my Pinterest boards with lots of inspiration so we have a clear vision, inspired by rooms like these:


When the landlord asked us to send over the paint chip I decided to go over to Benjamin Moore to find the ‘white’ that we wanted. I chose Benjamin Moore because I have heard them recommended countless times for interior flat paint and I didn’t want to mess this up. I typed in “white” and 151 different variations of white were displayed in front of me…uh, is this for real?!

As some of you know I am a hyper-researcher so then became my quest for the ‘perfect’ white for us! Yikes!

What I learned is that there are obviously countless shades of white but so many things can play a factor in how this actually looks on your walls! If there is a lot of greenery reflecting through your windows, how much natural light there is and even what direction your windows face! From my research it seemed that “warm whites” came most highly recommended so that your space doesn’t feel cold, it also helps off-set any green reflection you might be getting. Then there were “cool whites” which are cleaner and is good for offsetting the orange/pink cast that artificial light (if you are using a lot of this) gives off. And then there are pure whites…I’m thinking ‘pure white’ is more what we are going for because we want a really stark, modern feel.

Here were the most highly recommended whites I found:

Decorator White

benjamin moore decorator white paint chip









White Dove

Chantilly Lace
Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace Paint Chip

Simply White

Super White

As you can see it is obvious that each shade is different and I’m sure that each computer screen would display the shades differently, which is why it is so important to test out your paint before making your final decision…which is what I will be doing next week!

Here are some other posts that helped me along the way:

Houzz//How to Pick the Right White Paint
Remodelista//Architect’s White Paint Picks
Apartment Therapy//Best White Paints//Follow Up: Best White Paints
The Handmade Home//Doing White Right
Chez Larsson//About Paint

I discovered Houzz a few weeks ago and I highly recommended it. Yes, Pinterest is wonderful but what I love about Houzz is that you can find specific information on the pictures, you can search for rooms that use a specific paint color and even ask where items came from! If you are in the process of decorating it is a great resource!

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consignment tips and Rhea Lana haul

I headed down to the Rhea Lana sale this past weekend and I wanted to share my ‘haul’ with you!

I picked up a jacket and pair of shoes for both Darby and Gracen, 5 pairs of pants, 2 collared shirts, 1 tee, 2 toys for Deacon and a Leap Frog Word Builder…all for $73.50!!
englexas lifestyle blog consignment tips
I received lots of questions about consigning after this post so I thought I’d share some of my consignment success tips here.

englexas lifestyle blog Rhea Lana haul
Be organized:
When it comes to entering your items in online, the easiest way to do it is to put the clothes in size order smallest to biggest, then within the size order I like to do girls clothes then boys, and within that: pants, shirts, sweaters. I find this makes drop off so much easier! As I am entering the items into the computer I put them on a hanger (secured with a safety pin) and tag them. I highly recommend pre-printing your barcodes, or picking up the labels early so you can label them before you drop them off, this saves SO much time. Also, don’t bother even including items from the wrong season, they are really good at weeding these items out and it’s just a waste of time for you to try and include them in the batch wrong seasoned batch. Basically the spring sale is short sleeves, shorts, bathing suits and Fall is long-sleeved, pants and jackets…this is also the best time for costumes!

When you are checking in put your items on the rack while you are waiting for someone to help you. I usually use this time to put the labels on too.

Ask questions:
If some things are ‘denied’ ask why so that you know for next time and can remove any stains they see or just donate it.

Know your sizes:
Each brand carries different sizing, whether it be 3M, 6M, 9M or 3-6, 6-12 or even 6-9, 9-12. And it comes to no suprise to mamas that each brand is sized differently. My little one at 3 1/2 months is almost grown out of Old Navy 3-6 months, but still fits in Carters 3 months and Gap 3-6 months is still kinda big on him. My almost 5 year old is almost grown out of Target 4T jeans but Levi 4T’s are HUGE. So basically, know what size your kid is in all the different brands it would really suck to come home and your kid not fit the wonderful clothes you bought.

Make a list:
I am the kind of shopper that has a plan, and then when I am surrounded by adorable kids clothes I totally lose my mind and start excitedly filling my cart! Because of the way Rhea Lana is set up and in order to take advantage of the wonderful half price sale on the last few days I plan out my shopping, and keep a list with me. I separate my list into the things I want to get in the full price sale and what I can wait for half price days. For example this Fall my 2 and 4 year olds need jeans and shoes, from past experience I know that all the good jeans and shoes sell out quickly so I’m willing to pay full price. I’m also willing to pay full price for unisex clothes since I know that they can be passed down to each child. Another thing on my “pay full price” list is a Sophie Giraffe for my little man, I just can’t justify spending $25 on a baby teether that may or may not be as life-changing as everyone tells me it is so I’ll be looking for it in the sale! I save the things like play clothes and pajamas and other gender-specific items that I can’t pass up for my “half-price sale” list. I also find that there is always an insane abundance of toys and books and since toys and books get pretty torn up around here, I prefer to buy them as cheap as I can! I’ve never needed to purchase car-seats, strollers or bikes but I know that by the time the half-price sale rolls around, these things are mostly sold out.

This method has really worked for me and I’m lucky to never have spent more than I’ve made on a sale. Most of the time I even have money leftover!

The Rhea Lana sale is still open, here are the upcoming sale times:
Tuesday, September 18th – 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Wednesday, September 19th – 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Thursday, September 20th – 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM

and my personal favorite, the HALF PRICE sale :)
Friday, September 21st – 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Saturday, September 22nd – 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM

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