...because home doesn't happen overnight.
02.16.15 / Made Me Smile

layne birthdoy 10

We celebrated Layne’s birthday last week. He turned 10 and he’s the most intelligent, witty, handsome and sweet young foodie I know. If you ask him what his favorite thing to do is he always answers “read or eat.” In fact, he’s mastered doing both simultaneously. He doesn’t like being in the spotlight so pictures of him are few and far between, but I was able to snap one of him just before he blew out the candle on his cake tiramisu. (Like I said, foodie.) He has the dreamiest blue eyes and wears an entire shoe size larger than me. Hug your babies, folks.

Back when we adopted Cheetah, the vet guessed she had been born in January or February of last year. As soon as Layne heard, he offered to share his birthday with her. So we celebrated Cheetah’s first birthday last week, too. I need to write an update on life with Cheetah but she’s pretty much the best fluffy thing ever.

Some links I came across whilst pretending my ten-year-old is still a baby…

*I love a good renovation. Even more so when it involves a metal roof, unique interior finishes and right-sized living in weird Austin.

*A happy lil’ hallway.

*A cheeky midcentury house tour featuring real life kids…and a lizard! (Read the full story here.)

building walnut farm

*I just discovered Building Walnut Farm’s instagram feed and I’m hooked. It’s raw and natural and beautiful.

*Interior design cliff notes.

*And since it was Valentine’s Day on Saturday and we’re celebrating all things love…

On the first day of third grade, I had a cast on my arm. The girl assigned to sit next to me asked to sign it. Best friends forever, Sara she wrote. And when you’re eight years old, that’s enough to seal the deal. We were best friends and inseparable for several years right up until our early high school years. Life happened and we grew apart but we always remained friends. This weekend Sara gave birth. As a surrogate. For the second time. I’m so proud of her.

I hope you felt the love this weekend!

images: 1) Dana Miller for House*Tweaking 2) Building Walnut Farm



Wow – your friend Sara has really done something amazing. What a wonderful woman.

And happy birthday to Layne!


As usual, fantastic links. BUT THAT HOUSE!!! My husband and I are planning to relocate to Austin, in the soon future and once jobs can be secured, but I just sent him that house and said we must move NOW! Ugh… I wish our timeline was sooner!


That Austin house is pretty close to perfect (but I’d like it up here in Detroit – not a fan of the heat).

That’s a very sweet picture!


i love that you are stalking real estate in my beloved austin AND in the weirdest part of town no less. i used to rent a house a few blocks from that listing. i’m now in a more affordable part of east austin a couple of miles north…how times (and real estate prices!) have changed in the formerly ghetto now bohemian east side!


Happy B’day to your 10 year old! Mine’s turning 10 soon and feels like time is running against me. It’s strange, but I would have described my little one in the same way – bookworm, foodie and passionate about everything – sports, math, physics, art, cooking, climbing, animals, birds, it’s endless. And he loves Tiramisu too! Anyways, happy happy birthday to Layne, I know what it feels like. :)



Happy Birthday to Layne and Cheetah. Love the way you captured the cat under Layne’s chin. A perfect image of your camera shy son!


This really is an awesome picture. I can see the boy you are describing. Happy birthday!
Sara’s story is so inspiring.


What a beautiful, charming boy. Such a great photo!


Sara is absolutely amazing. Seems as though she was born to impact lives. Such an inspiring story. Also that house is pretty awesome and the other Sarah’s hallway is fab too.


The Austin house is awesome. It’s not as weird of a city as you might think though. I still think the PNW takes top billing. Lived in both!