Southern Sunday Y'all

BryGuy wanted one thing for Father's Day and that was homemade coconut cake. Seeing as though it was his first Father's Day, I thought granting his dessert wishes would be a nice thing to do. And since the weather forecast looked pretty good, he decided to smoke some ribs and some pork butt. While the meats were cooking, I whipped up some coleslaw, and Bry mixed up some tasty bourbon cocktails... and my friends, Southern Sunday was born. Check out more photos from our Father's Day below. Also, if you're interested in making the most refreshing bourbon cocktail in your own home, here's the recipe for a Whisky Smash.


Bathroom makeover

So this is our downstairs bathroom. I love having a bathroom on the first floor because we spend so much time in the living room and kitchen, it's nice not to have to run upstairs every time you have to pee. Except, here's the thing, I hate that bathroom. I dislike using it so much that I actually choose to go up and down the stairs to the second floor bathroom instead of using the one that was just a room away. 

I always told Bry that this bathroom was a down-the-road project for me, but when I found myself not even wanting to step into it, I knew it was time for a change. I went to the hardware store, looked at paint chips for about two seconds, picked one that looked okay and went home and started painting. A fresh coat of paint was all it took to give this room some new life. Check out the before and after photos below. 


Family photo shoot

Meet my happy baby. She has quite the personality these days. You'll most likely find her growling when she's hungry, babbling or squealing when she's all excited about nothing, or trying to lick everything she can get her chubby little hands on. We put Lulu in her Sunday best and took her to the backyard for a quick photo shoot this past weekend. Of course, halfway through the photo shoot she decided that was the perfect time to spit up all over her top, pants, and mommy's pants as well, but we went with it and still were able to get some good family pics! Check out more photos below: 


Finding the right real estate agent

When BryGuy and I started to get more serious about our house search -- besides just looking at million dollar homes on Zillow and drooling -- we knew we needed guidance. We had never done this before, we were as they say, "Property Virgins" (Sidenote: Can I just say that I love that show and pretty much all shows on HGTV...except Love it or List it and Flip or Flop, they are the worst.) Despite my wealth of knowledge learned from HGTV I actually had zero idea on how to go about the whole thing. Do you just start looking at houses first? Do you meet with your bank? Do you get a real estate agent? All of those questions were so overwhelming to me that I would freeze up and be like, "it's too complicated, we can do it." 

And along came Ana, who not only happens to be one of my very dearest friends, but is also a licensed real estate agent. I started to pick her brain with questions about the process. In all honesty, Bry and I weren't sure about whether or not we wanted our close friend to be our real estate agent. What if we weren't happy with the search process and didn't know how to tell her? What if something went wrong down the road and we felt uncomfortable, would it create tension in the friendship? 

After thinking about it long and hard, we decided that it was better to have a trusted friend on our side than a complete stranger, and it was one of the best decisions we've ever made. Not only did our agent/friend find us the home of our dreams in record time but she provided sound advice, kept us on budget, and made a complicated and overwhelming process feel straightforward and easy. 
Although I'm no expert at buying a home, I can tell you what worked for us and I think that if you're not lucky enough to have a close friend that can be your agent, that you should shop around for someone that's going to be the right fit for you. After all, this is one of the most important decisions and biggest purchases you will make in your life! 

In my opinion, these are the qualities that are most important when looking for a real estate agent:


Southern porch inspiration

Image from: Architectural Digest

I'm living in the wrong place. Please take me away to Charleston and sit me on a front porch that looks just like this and I'll be happy forever. I don't know what it is about a front porch, but I just love them. In my childhood home, it was a tradition on the weekends during the summer to have breakfast and coffee on the porch. Now that we have purchased a home of our very own that just happens to have a front porch, I'm dying to make it charming and cozy so that we can continue the weekend morning porch tradition. As I've turned to Pinterest for some porchspiration I keep being drawn to Southern inspired ones with dark wicker and bright upholstery. I'll need to paint the columns of my current porch white, pick up some wicker seating, spruce up the cement with an area rug and add a ceiling fan. Basically to get the true Southern porch feel, you need your outdoors to look like as styled and beautiful as your indoors. Check out more porch inspiration photos below. What do you think of this style porch in Philadelphia? Am I going to be the odd man on the block?


10 Tips for Flying With an Infant

We did it. We took our three-month-old baby on a plane and survived. I was all stressed out the week leading up to this flight only because I didn't know what to expect, I didn't know what we'd need, and I didn't know if the TSA folks were going to give us a hard time. But all of that worry was pointless because our trip was one of the most uneventful flying experience of my life and everyone was incredibly kind and helpful (except one impatient fellow passenger in the security line.) But, I learned a few things along the way and figured I should share the wisdom:


Chicken and Garlic Gravy

This chicken was the moistest, most delicious chicken I've had in a long time. Now some folks might be turned off by the amount of garlic cloves the recipe calls for, don't be. Whatever you do, don't skimp on the garlic -- it's not overbearing, it's actually perfect! This recipe is sure to become a regular staple in our household. Next time, I'm going to adjust it slightly by adding in a boatload of mushrooms and some thinly sliced onions as well. Also, you must serve this with potatoes (mashed or roasted), rice isn't going to do this justice. Get the recipe below. 


We bought a house!

Hello there friends! It's been a while. Let me give you a little rundown of what's been hap'nin' since we last chatted. Well, my maternity leave whizzed by and before I knew it, I was bringing my chubby little baby to daycare and rejoining the herds of folks commuting into the city for work. At first, it was so so so so sad (like, all the tears kind of sad), but now it's becoming the norm and every day is a little easier. But let me tell you, my gym time has taken a serious hit because when you come home from a long work day to your smiling happy baby, you really don't want to spend any more time away from her than is absolutely necessary. 

Oh also, we bought a zoo house! (Quick side note - have you seen that move We Bought a Zoo? It's quite precious and every time I start to say that we bought a house...I first think about saying we bought a zoo, which would be much cooler, but unfortunately, isn't applicable.) ANYWAY, I digress. Yes, we bought a house. The most perfect house with a nice front porch, gorgeous wood work, an updated kitchen (my happy place), and a cute little backyard. Here she is, Casa de Williams:
It's a twin home, meaning it's attached to one other property, so we own the left side. Well let's be honest, right now we own like the front door and the bank owns the rest, but in 30 years, this puppy will be ours! The neighborhood is so cute and perfect, we're walking distance to restaurants and shops, close to a couple of parks, but we still have a little yard and some more privacy than our existing spot.

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