FTRB on HLN Project Home

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It’s time! My segment for HLN’s Project Home is live!

In a nutshell, we made over an entry/hall area and the centerpiece was this mirror which got a little DIY action.

It aired in two parts over the past two weeks but for you, my dear readers, here is the entire piece. (Keep in mind it’s my first tv appearance so there’s definitely room for improvement!)

What happened to my hair at the end??? I don’t remember a tornado blowing through the apartment! Anyway….. if you’re interested in more details about the DIY project itself, there is a slideshow here.

Happy Monday and happy fall, everyone! I just love this time of year! #pumpkinspicedeverything

(Video: Headline News)

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Lately (Things You May Not Have Known About Me + Some Randomness)

FROM THE RIGHT BANK | www.fromtherightbank.com(Our yurt camp on White Lake.)

Hi, friends, it’s been a while and that’s because the past few weeks have been a whirlwind. Here’s some of where I’ve been and what I’ve been doing.

First, I was on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure in Mongolia. (Did that throw you for a loop?) I’m nothing if not complex. Ha! I’m most definitely a city person and I admit I’m partial to the finer things in life but I’ve also always had an Indiana Jones/Marco Polo/adventurer side that likes to explore remote corners of the world every now and then. I think it’s partly genetics (my entire family seems to have this gene) and partly the books I read as a child, all about faraway places. Whatever the reason, my curiosity has taken me to the likes of Timbuktu, the Himalayas, the Okavango Delta, Angkor Wat……. and now, Mongolia.

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I got to live out my fantasies of living in a real yurt (their construction is genius!), seeing Karakorum (Genghis Khan’s capital), boating on Lake Khovsgol, seeing how real nomads live and riding camels in the Gobi Desert. We traveled over 1,000 miles in a Russian van on unpaved roads, flew in tiny planes and rode horses. We petted reindeer (so soft!), picnicked in a gorge, saw 80 million year-old dinosaur bones in the very spot where they were found(!), soaked in hot springs, tasted camel milk cheese and fermented mare’s milk, and climbed a 1,000 ft. sand dune. As you do. (That’s me lying at the top of the dunes, watching the sun come up over the Gobi. Unreal.)

FROM THE RIGHT BANK | www.fromtherightbank.com(Lake Khovsgol)

And everywhere we went, the Land of Blue Skies lived up to its name. I’ve never seen such wide open skies and so many stars at night. I think that’s what I’ll remember most. There are more photos on Instagram if you’re interested (@FromTheRightBank).

FROM THE RIGHT BANK | www.fromtherightbank.com(Rob Bell, Iyanla Vanzant and Elizabeth Gilbert with Oprah)

Then almost as soon as I got home it was the Live the Life You Want weekend with Oprah! (Did that throw you for another loop?) I don’t really talk about spirituality here but it’s an important part of my life and I credit Oprah with starting me on this path. I’m not running off to an ashram or anything but I’m striving to learn things like how to be more present, to live my purpose and to deal (graciously) with whatever life throws at me. You know, the usge. FROM THE RIGHT BANK | www.fromtherightbank.com  There was so much wisdom shared during the weekend and I’m only just starting to digest it all.

I also have a lot of new reading inspired by Oprah and my trip…..

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One of my dearest friends who is also really into this type of thing flew into town for the event and we had quite the few days leading up to the weekend. After schlepping around Mongolia in my trekking clothes and generally roughing it (it’s all relative), it was nice to get dressed, put on some makeup and paint the town.

I generally like to take out-of-town visitors to tried and true places and One Eared Stag is my favorite Atlanta restaurant…..

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Afternoon tea at the St. Regis usually doesn’t disappoint either…..

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And we took in some art at Whitespace Gallery. It’s my favorite gallery setting in the city, especially the garden…..

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I bet you’re thinking Now you sound more like yourself……  There was a lot more gallivanting but you get the idea.

So, it’s been a crazy, full and wonderful few weeks, to say the least. I’m exhausted but grateful and happy to be home so I can catch up and get myself together for the fall. It’s my favorite season of the year, hands down. Now if we can just get the weather to cooperate…..

(Photos: FROM THE RIGHT BANK)

*No part of this post is sponsored.*

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Making Happiness Happen + $100 HomeGoods Gift Card Giveaway

So last week, I told you about HomeGoods’ Happiness Happens campaign. Today I want to tell you a little about how I took part.

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When HomeGoods provided me with a gift card and challenged me to make happiness happen for someone in the community, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to team up with a local organization called Project Live Proud (PLP). I first learned about PLP when I met its founder Nyota Brooks a couple of years ago. It is an interior design charity in Atlanta that acquires furniture and household items and installs interiors for families overcoming poverty and/or homelessness. By providing design that transforms homes, PLP raises standards of living and helps to break the cycle of poverty.

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PLP just started working with a family headed by a single mom who had recently moved into a one-bedroom apartment with her two sons. Together we will be making over the home through this fall so I used the gift card to pick up some things to help us get started. Multi-functional pieces are important when you are working with small spaces and budgets so I was thrilled to find this ottoman that serves as storage, coffee table, bench or even a chair…..

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The design is so clever. The entire top lifts up or you can just lift half to form a chair back. I also love the pretty blue and tufting. We also got some beautiful new bedding which will be the jumping off point for the design of the boys’ bedroom. (Think teals and taupes.) I delivered these items to the lovely client earlier this week and she was so appreciative and excited about our plans. I’d say we successfully made Happiness Happen!

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I’ll be sure to keep you posted on the makeover and in the meantime, HomeGoods is giving one of you a $100 gift card to make happiness happen in your community. To enter, just leave a comment letting us know what you would do with the card if you won. I can’t wait to hear your ideas!

I’ll be traveling for the next couple of weeks so I’ll leave this giveaway open until August 31st. A winner will be drawn and announced here on September 1st.

***The giveaway is now closed and the winner is….. Kristen (Submitted on 2014/08/17 at 7:44 am). Please email me your mailing address using the contact form at the top of the blog. Thanks and congratulations!***

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Lately: Kitchen Updates, Living Room Tweaks & Some Wonderful Happenings

Hi there friends, can you believe it’s August already? It feels like summer just started but then I say that with every passing season. It’s surely a sign of old age….. Anyway, here’s what’s been happening on the FTRB homefront.

The long awaited kitchen island lights arrived and promptly got installed…..

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It was worth the wait. I feel like I’ve been documenting the whole saga minute by minute but I could not be happier about them. (By the way, do you see the teeny peek of the white cabinets? I’m happy about that too.)

The faucet also got installed…..

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Loving how it looks too. This happened a while back but I think I forgot to mention it here.

Still in the kitchen, I ran into Home Depot the other day just to pick up some spray paint and saw this beauty so naturally, it had to come home with me…..

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I thought my fiddle leaf trees were fine but when I saw this one, I realized they were not fine at all. In fact, they were quite sad. I’m sort of hoping this one will make them jealous and make them up their game but I’m doubtful.

There’s been some shuffling of furniture too. You know how you move one piece from one room to another and that sets off a whole chain reaction? I did some rearranging in the kitchen and family room and….. yadda yadda, the round coffee table has now landed in the living room.

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It works so much better from a practical point of view (plenty of room to spread out books and cocktails) and the shape makes it perfect for the leopard chairs to hug. It was a why-didn’t-I-do-this-years-ago moment.

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I’ve been having fun styling it this way and that…..

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So that’s some of what’s new around the homestead.

Before I leave you for today, I want to tell you about two things.

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As you know, I’m a Northerner currently transplanted in the South and I can tell you that one of the smartest things going on in the South right now is The Bitter Southerner. The world needs this publication; they are telling stories no one else is telling and just killing it, every week. They also happen to be a wonderful group of people and they are launching their inaugural membership drive today! So I hope you will head over, check them out, support them and help spread the word.

 

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Secondly, this Friday, August 8th is Happiness Happens Day from HomeGoods. HomeGoods will be giving away $10,000 in gift cards to participants who share a happy moment on Twitter or Instagram. Very cool, right?

All you have to do is share how you made happiness happen in someone’s life – no matter how big or small – by posting a photo on Instagram or Twitter using the hashtags #HappinessHappens and #HomeGoodsSweeps. Winners will be chosen randomly and awarded $100 gift cards throughout the day from 9AM to 5PM EST. Visit www.homegoods.com/hhsweeps for official rules.

So go on and make happiness happen for someone and come back next week and I’ll share with you how I did it. I’ll also have a $100 gift card to give away!

(Photos: FROM THE RIGHT BANK)

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An Explanation/Some Exciting News

FROM THE RIGHT BANK | www.fromtherightbank.com(Dining Room)

Hi, there, I feel like this post has been a long time coming.

You may have been wondering what the hell is going on around FTRB lately, why I haven’t shown you any of the projects I’ve been working on, if I fell off of the face of the earth, just got flaky or what. And I wouldn’t blame you. Without beating around the bush, here’s the deal. My house is being photographed by a magazine. I am over the moon about it but as I’m sure many of you know, this means not posting photos here (or anywhere) until it is published. I’ve been keeping quiet about it because I wanted to wait until I had some details to share. Those are still being worked out but as more time passed, I felt like I needed to tell you what was going on.

FROM THE RIGHT BANK | www.fromtherightbank.com(Family Room)

So I haven’t dropped the ball on the kitchen mini-makover, Project Hallway, the laundry room, etc. that I’ve talked about all year. In fact, all of those spaces are done and I’ve been dying to show you! I’ve also finished the family room and the master bedroom, I’ve redone the guest room and even started a few other projects. I know this is all really annoying to you as a blog reader because let’s face it, you come here for the finished spaces more than anything else, right? I enjoy those posts the most too. But this is where we are so we’ll all have to hang tight a little longer for the big reveals. In the meantime, I’ll continue to share plans for new projects as well as bits and pieces of what is happening. I’m also posting peeks like these on Instagram (@FromTheRightBank) as I continue to tweak things around the house.

I know. You’re probably still annoyed. But I hope a little less so now that you know why.

(Photos: FROM THE RIGHT BANK)

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