Happy Friday 8/3/18

Happy Friday! Well we made it to August and I am happy to be here. You too? This weekend marks the last of our Airbnb rentals at the Farmhouse and I’m not sure how I feel about that. There have been a lot of pluses and minuses associated with renting out our primary residence for so many stays this summer (big plus – we’re planning a trip to Europe this Fall!). I’ll wrap up our experiences in a post eventually, but first we’re getting the Ravenna House ready for sale. You can expect a couple of slow weeks on the Grit and Polish while Garrett and I wrap up some projects at that property and enjoy Seattle with the kiddos. Happy summer, friends!

Well it’s Friday again, so I’ve rounded up lots of great links from around the web. Grab a cup of coffee and jump in!

How to spend 72 hours (without kids ūüėČ in Portland.

Four tips for scouring the best secondhand finds. No wonder Sherry and John’s homes have the best antiques!

Motherhood in the age of fear. There is something so very wrong about this.

via // photo, renovation, and staging by Rich and Shannon King

Shannon and Rich’s home is on West Elm’s blog and goodness me, it’s stunning. If you haven’t been following their renovation journey on Instagram, you definitely should! Their entire home screams Anthropologie catalog and is one of my favorite old homes, ever. I especially love Shannon and Rich’s design mentality: “Our design process is very slow. We live with blank spaces alot, until we find the perfect piece.‚ÄĚ Ditto to that!

10 Natural swimming holes. Consider my bucket list updated.

This is the first time I’ve heard of a stock tank DIY, but I’m definitely on board.

Seven of my college teammates piled into the Farmhouse last weekend for our first girl’s weekend in 14 years. It was amazing and wonderful and everything I didn’t know I needed. And Melissa’s crepe recipe was a huge hit!

Have a great weekend.



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Happy Friday 7/27/18 (+ Daphne’s First Birthday!)

Happy Friday! And a very happy first birthday to our baby girl, Daphne Garrett. Can you believe she’s already ONE?! Queue the tears for this sentimental mama…

Our Farmhouse // Daphne’s Bedroom¬†// books // unicorn¬†// rug (on sale!)

It’s hard to imagine what our family was like before this¬†sweet and fierce girl arrived last July, two weeks after her due date. Daphne is curious and loving and strong and quite possibly the loudest of our loud crew (ha!). She holds her own against her big brothers yet has an easy smile and the sweetest, most infectious laugh. Best of all, Daphne loves her people¬†fiercely. She rewards her inner circle with hugs and kisses and squeals of delight and the feeling is very, VERY mutual. I wish we could pause right here and watch her waddle around the Farmhouse for eternity. Pure heaven.

(You can catch up on Daphne’s home birth here and her bedroom makeover here.)

That two tooth smile…swoon! Well it’s Friday again so I’ve found lots of great links for you. Grab a cup of coffee and dig in!

Loved this 2-day makeover webisode by Studio McGee. Are videos like this the new millennial version of HGTV?

I’ve been eyeing the new Dyson cordless vacuum. You too? Ashely recently picked one up and shared a review here.

It turns out that sleep is just as important as your mother told you it was. And maybe even more so. After 5 years of baby-induced sleep deprivation, this article hit home.


We celebrated Daphne’s birthday last night with a casual, family dinner and almond cake with raspberry filling from this cookbook¬†(don’t worry, the non-edible sweat pea flowers were removed before we dug in!).¬†In our bent towards minimalism, we got Daphne just one small gift,¬†her very own copy of Anne of Green Gables to read with her mama when she’s old enough (just as I did with my mama).

Try to pick a favorite of these whimsical kid bedrooms, I dare you!

Have a great weekend!



*disclosure: We use affiliate links.  If you make a purchase through one of the links, we may receive a small commission at no cost to you.  Affiliate links is one of the ways we keep this blog running, so thanks for supporting the Grit and Polish!


Happy Friday 7/20/18

Happy Friday! Goodness, it’s been a hot week here in Washington, and I love it so. We’ve been picking cherries by the bag full (I think we’ve¬†finally made a dent in our cherry supply), eating raspberries warm from the vine, and playing in the kiddie pool every chance we get. This photo pretty much sums up summer at the Farmhouse for me.

Our Farmhouse // Farmhouse Pottery berry bowl and crock

This week Garrett and I got to tour an old building in our small town. The two-story structure was originally built in the 1890’s as a mercantile with a boarding house upstairs. Over the years, the main floor has been re-imagined, but the upstairs is where the old-building gold is. The original boarding house is still there, mostly untouched, with a century of dust and lots of peeling wallpaper. Apparently the stairs to the boarding house were removed in 1905 to make way for a theater downstairs (we actually accessed the top floor via ladder), which means very few people have been up there. And it was amazing.¬†Many of the original doors and millwork are still there along with a massive skylight that runs the length of the building. The ceilings are a good 12′ and every door had a transom over top of it. The space is very rough after a century of neglect, but the whole experience – seeing this lost world and imagining it alive with people 120 years ago – was one of the coolest things I’ve done in a long time. I saved a few videos of our tour here if you’re interested.

Well it’s Friday again, and I’ve scoured the internet for lots of great links. Grab a cup of coffee and dig in.

The prettiest town in every state.

Success isn’t about money, it’s about peace. An interesting read on financial independence and what you really search for when you’re in control of all of your time.

A beautiful, vintage apartment decorated by an architectural student. Swoon!

The cutest nursery (and oh my, those cute legs!).

Garrett and I have been considering going solar at the Farmhouse because we use a lot of electricity here. I just stumbled upon this article from Mr. Money Mustache about his DIY solar installation and it has my wheels spinning so I thought I’d pass it along in case anyone else is curious about where to start.

Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale is on and so many of Dash and Albert’s rugs are on sale! Also, my sister picked up this rain coat¬†and it’s SO cute!

Have a great weekend!




Happy Friday 7/13/18

Happy Friday! We came down to Portland this week for a family wedding and snuck in a few extra days for some summer fun. We drove through the Columbia Gorge (Hood River, you are a new favorite!), spent a day at the beach, and walked 15 miles through Portland with a stroller full of kids. Voodoo Donuts, Powells Books, Deschutes Brewery, and the city splash pad were all on the agenda. It’s been a really good week!

We’re back at it again today, exploring Portland and hanging out with family. So I’ll get right down to it…I’ve rounded up lots of great links from around the web. Grab a cup of coffee and dig in.

This kitchen has so many good elements, but it’s the wood cabinets that stopped me in my tracks.

Rick Owen’s¬†minimalist home in Venice is interesting and beautiful, but it’s the fashion designer’s unique take on ‘home’ that held my attention: “I needed to create a space that was severe and avoided any kind of sentimentality or attachments, a blank slate to completely obliterate, to concentrate on listening to what I really want.” Thoughts?

We got a question about our Dexter fence this week so I thought I’d include a link to the space¬†here. Despite it’s small size, this private “yard” is one of my favorite outdoor spaces (in large part because it’s so low maintenance and so private!).

Almost everything in life worth accomplishing is difficult. That and more inspiration for living your best life.

It’s just as you thought: no one is using those formal living spaces anymore.

Instagram added a new “ask me a question” feature and we’ve been getting some fun questions – from how we met to how we got started on renovating/renting properties. I’m saving all of our responses here¬†in case you’re interested.

Brett and Kara’s HGTV show, Home to Last, premiere’s tomorrow (more details here)!

Have a great weekend!



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Happy Friday 7/6/18

Happy Friday! How was your holiday week? Ours was really fun! In fact, our week was so fun that I woke up this morning and realized I never put together today’s post. Ha! Better late then never, I suppose ūüėČ

One big thing we’re working on right now is preparing for the sale of our Ravenna House. That’s right, after 4 1/2 years and a substantial renovation (shown above), we’ll be parting with this old beauty. Honestly, we never thought we’d sell any of our Seattle properties (yes, quite naively), but¬†here’s the deal: taxes and time. Our capital gains exclusion runs out soon and the tax-free equity from Ravenna could be better put into something closer to home. Plus, we’ve been busier than we’d like as of late and we’re hoping that selling a rental will free up time for things we’re more passionate about. Like our kids. And outdoor adventures. And cool, old properties that get our heartbeats going.

But maybe more important than any of that, we just want to keep growing. If that makes sense. Growth is something we didn’t really value when we¬†retired from the traditional workforce¬†two years ago, but it’s definitely something we’ve learned we need. What is it they say,” if you’re not growing, you’re dying,” or something like that.¬†Anyway, we’ll be putting Ravenna on the market next month.

Well it’s Friday again, so I scrounged up lots of great links from the week.¬†Grab a cup of coffee and dig in.

We were interviewed by Rachel of the Minimalist Mom and the article came out this week. It’s aptly titled “Stumbling into Financial Independence through Real Estate Investment and House Hacking.”

Coffee is good for us. Thank goodness!

An interesting read on Mr. Money Mustache’s tiny house. There’s so much to talk about here: our obsession with larger and larger homes, quantity vs. quality, the keys to a happier community, cottage-style communal living, plus the inexpensive construction of a tiny home.

I missed this tour when it originally published, but oh man this loft!

The secret to perfect popcorn is already in your cupboard. We’ve tried the vegan “cheesy” flavor and the carmel corn and I’m pretty sure popcorn is the best snack ever.

The most popular toy at the Farmhouse is this swing. We’ve had it for almost 2 years now and it was worth every penny!

Have a great weekend!



*disclosure: We use affiliate links.  If you make a purchase through one of the links, we may receive a small commission at no cost to you.  Affiliate links is one of the ways we keep this blog running, so thanks for supporting the Grit and Polish!


Happy Friday 6/29/18

Happy Friday! What a lovely, slow week it’s been. We got back from camping on Sunday to a clean home and all the summer feels. After some much needed baths and laundry (camping with young kids is messy business ;), we filled our time with jam making and getting outside. A good week!

Our Farmhouse kitchen / marble slab, crock Farmhouse Pottery (c/o)

I’ve been thinking a lot about our kitchen lately (you can see more of it in this IG post). The space is okay as is. Truly it is. And I’m heading deep into #firstworldproblems here when I say, we’d love to change around the layout and bring a more historic look to the space. I’ve dreamt about the changes ever since we moved in. A more functional flow. Solid surface countertops. A better connection to the outdoors. And a 6-burner range. It would be lovely. But Garrett and I have come to realize that a renovation just doesn’t make sense at this point. A previous owner already renovated the space 10-ish years ago and put quite a bit of money into it. Us redoing it again, would be like paying twice for the kitchen and wasting perfectly good materials. And of course, there’s that under-valued element of time to consider, and a renovation would certainly take a lot of our’s. So we’ve decided to…do nothing. And we’re happy with that. Sometimes¬†okay is good enough. Ya know? Especially with fresh flowers on the counter.

Well it’s Friday again, so I found lots of great links from around the web.¬†Grab a cup of coffee and dig in!

The Home Love Network and the Bucket List Family are joining forces. Oh my, I’m Excited!

Via A Beautiful Mess // Photo: Mandi Johnson, edited with A Color Story Desktop

Loved this inexpensive makeover/IKEA hack. Also has me wondering if there are inexpensive, big-box style bookcases made without particle board, because this project has my name written all over it.

This guest bedroom is so fun. Who wouldn’t want to stay for a weekend…or a month?!

Lessons from someone who hasn’t bought a thing in 6 months¬†(except necessities).

Life on a boat looks pretty beautiful. This is a fun roundup of houseboats – it’s so cool to see how creatively other people live.

I put¬†these veggie burgers on our summer grilling list. I’ve always been a beef burger kind of girl, but in recent years I find myself leaning to the veggie options.

Have a great weekend!



*disclosure: We use affiliate links.  If you make a purchase through one of the links, we may receive a small commission at no cost to you.  Affiliate links is one of the ways we keep this blog running, so thanks for supporting the Grit and Polish!


Happy Friday 6/22/18 + Our Video Equipment

Happy Friday!¬†Oh summer, how I love you! The temperatures finally rose here in central Washington, and I’m in my happy place. You too?

Who else caught Instagram’s new update, IGTV, this week? Basically it’s a channel for longer videos (ala YouTube) and we’ll be getting ours up and running soon. I’m pretty sure Instagram is trying to take over the world, but I do love the convenience of a single platform where we can share so much. I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned it here, but Garrett and I have been excited about creating video content ever since filming for our¬†HGTV pilot and Home Love Network episode. We’ve been working on it behind the scenes for awhile now and our first video makeover is coming out next week. Can’t wait to share it with you guys.

In the meantime, I’ve rounded up the video equipment we’re using (and read on for Friday links too).

Camera – Sony’s A7 III is the hot new thing in full-frame, digital camera and we jumped onboard. We bought it primarily for video, but it takes stills too. Why we like it: it’s full-frame, reasonably priced, and easy to use.¬†It’s been back ordered much of the time since it’s release (yup, it’s that good!), but worth the wait!

Lens – we opted for this f2.8 16-35mm lens because of versatility and price point. It’s awesome for interiors since you can capture so much of the room, especially on a full frame camera. If we continue to do video, we’ll probably add more lenses, but this is a great basic lens to start with for interiors.

Tripod – this is not the cheapest tripod on the market, but it’s sturdy, well-built, and produces the smoothest pans and tilts.

Lavalier Microphone – we bought these microphones after being introduced to them by Andy and Candis. We use them to capture dialog, which records straight onto our iPhones. Super convenient! Tape the microphone inside your shirt (we use athletic tape) and the other end winds underneath your clothes and into your phone.

Camera microphone – this microphone is mounted to our camera for capturing general room audio, construction sound, etc. The Sony already has a built-in microphone, but this is a big upgrade for sound quality. For interviews and general dialog, we use the lavalier mics.

SD Card – we keep a couple of these because video creates big files. Some of the advanced recording capabilities of the camera require a high-speed SD card, so this one fits the bill.

Backup drive – as I mentioned, video creates big files, so we moved all of the files onto this 8tb backup drive. Garrett edits the videos from there.

Editing software – Garrett uses Premiere Pro to edit videos. It’s a powerful program that has been relatively easy to get the hang of.

Phew! That’s the video equipment we’re using. It has definitely been an investment this year, but also a creative and fun new endeavor. I’m excited to show you guys more next week. In the meantime, it’s Friday again so I’ve rounded up lots of great links from around the web. Grab a cup of coffee and dig in!

A friend recently bought a Mosquito Spartan and I’m thinking about picking a few up for the Farmhouse. The reviews are mixed, but I’m curious if anyone has tried one…?

John Derian’s home via Cup of Jo // Photos¬†Alpha Smoot¬†// Styling¬†Kate Jordan

This home gives me ALL the feels. It’s a former sea captain’s home and aged to perfection!

How to make a 5-year plan. Do you guys do formal planning or goal setting?

I could relate to Melissa’s post this week on the idea of ‘hustling’. May we all find the right balance (Garrett and I are taking steps to achieve that right now!).

This is our kind of summer dinner! Steak salad with charred vegetables. And for dessert…no-churn ice cream!

Lastly, I wanted to share this post about kids being separated from their families at the border and how we can help. My heart is so heavy.



*disclosure: We use affiliate links.  If you make a purchase through one of the links, we may receive a small commission at no cost to you.  Affiliate links is one of the ways we keep this blog running, so thanks for supporting the Grit and Polish!


Happy Friday 6/15/18 + Clutter-Free Fathers Day Gift Ideas

Happy Friday! And happy Father’s Day to all you indispensable men in the world! We get to celebrate both Garrett and our 5-year-old, Wilder, this weekend since the former is an amazing dad and the later had his birthday earlier this week. Woe is me, these kids are growing up entirely too fast (said every parent, ever ;).

via @themoderncaravan

Back to Father’s Day for a minute…we’ve shied away from gift-giving on small holidays, but we still like to make the day special for the dads in our life. I wanted to share a few simple ideas for inexpensive, clutter-free gifts that we love. We’ll definitely be doing a few (or all) of these this weekend!

A Story by the Kids – Wilder wrote a story for Garrett this year and it was just so sweet. Wilder dictated the story to me, I typed it up, printed it, and folded it like a book. It was an adventure story full of dinosaurs and Wilder was so excited to give it to Garrett that he couldn’t wait for Father’s Day. Ha! I’m pretty sure it was as fun for Wilder to create as it was for Garrett to receive!

Hike/Bike/Nature Walk – get outside for a hike with the kids! Getting into nature is my favorite way to relax and renew with Garrett and I love getting to enjoy it with the kids too.

Brewery Trip – You may have already noticed that we love to go to breweries. For a day like Father’s Day, I like to pack a little treat like fresh-baked cookies or some seasonal fruit and bring it to our local brewery (which allows outside food and kids). We get to enjoy a beer and community and the kids get to hang out with us. If you don’t have a local brewery, you could always pick up a 22oz-er of his favorite microbrew and enjoy it at home!

Family Pancakes – our family really does breakfast. Pancakes, waffles, crepes, and eggs are on a weekly rotation around here. But we’ll make Father’s Day breakfast extra special by making a compote or picking up some seasonal fruit.

Help Him Work for a Day – offer Dad an extra pair of hands around the house for the day. Together you can finally prune those shrubs or pressure wash the house. Bonus: you’ll get to spend hours together!

Go Camping – there’s nothing like a night in the woods to bring the family closer together! We have always been tent sleepers, but a vintage Airstream wouldn’t be a bad option, either ūüėČ

Make a Sweet Treat! – nothing says “we appreciate you” like a hot pan of brownies or a DIY version of Dad’s favorite candy (like these).

I’d love to hear if you have any other easy/inexpensive/clutter-free gift ideas for the holiday! In the meantime, it’s Friday again, so I rounded up lots of great links from the week. Grab a cup of coffee and dig in!

Molly Yeh has a show coming to the Food Network! I can’t wait to see more of Molly and loved reading about her experience filming a pilot (so different from our experience!).

Wilder is always asking to borrow Garrett’s leatherman so this birthday we got him one of his own! This kid’s version¬†comes without a knife blade (you can add it in later) so it’s safe for a 5-year-old. I’m kind of obsessed with how cool these are!

via @themoderncaravan // Airstream renovation by Kate Oliver + Ellen Prasse

I’ve been staking @themoderncaravan‘s Instagram feed for a few weeks now (the photos in this post are both theirs!). Kate and Ellen do an amazing job fixing up vintage Airstreams and their feed has become one of my favorites on IG. Crossing my fingers we’ll get to tackle our own Airstream renovation one day.

Messy people, minimalism is for you.

This 1928 Spanish-Colonial is gorgeous! I especially love the living room and outdoor space.

Going gray, gracefully. I’m trying to figure out how to do just that!

Have a great weekend!



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Happy Friday 6/8/18

Happy Friday! Is your June off to a good start? We had a great trip to Orcas Island this week! It was a free-spirit, breeze-in-your-hair kind of vacation with some of our best friends. We explored the rocky, beautiful beaches, ate oysters we shucked ourselves, toured the beautiful Moran mansion, and played Pitch late into the night. It was one for the books! And about that mansion…

That is the Moran Mansion at Rosario on Orcas Island. And as beautiful as the home is, my favorite thing about our visit was learning about the people behind the home, seeing how they lived, and catching glimpses of the changes made to the home over the past 110+ years (why, why is that copper pipe running below the wood box-beamed ceiling?!). Can you believe that last photo is the master bathroom of this glorious home. Well one of two master bathrooms, because Mr. and Mrs. Moran had different master suites, of course. And there were no master closets – just¬† a series of drawers in each bedroom. The master beds were maybe a full size and the bedrooms were relatively tiny compared to the size of the home. I found that all so…refreshing! Oh and did I mention the flooring? White hexagon tile and hefty wood herringbone. Swoon!

Well it’s Friday again, so I rounded up¬†some of my favorite links from the week.

This podcast. It was a recommendation of Joy the Baker and super entertaining. We listened to it on our drive, right after our 4-year-old caught up on Wow in the World (highly recommend that one for kids, too!).

This rose-covered exterior stopped me in my tracks.

Why it’s important to work hard. I certainly relate to this, especially as Joshua Becker defines work (Becoming Minamilist). Related: Mr. Money Mustache thinks all retirements should include work (Bigger Pockets Money Podcast).

Yes please! I’ll definitely be trying these chocolate chip hazelnut cardamom cookies this summer (Dishing up the Dirt).

Have you heard of travel hacking? A few tips from this full-time traveler on flying for free (be my travel muse).

Apparently we’re not the only ones interested in Orcas Island…Oprah bought a home there last month.

What should the next HGTV show look like? Interesting thoughts on the impacts of all those expensive, instant, and sometimes unnecessary renovations (curbed).

Have a great weekend!



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Farmhouse Friday 6/1/18

Happy Friday! And welcome to June. Our small town has a historic house move going on this weekend, and I’m pretty excited about it! (If you’re local, you can read more about it here.) The old home is being moved to make way for apartments, I believe, and it’s new location will be right across the street from where I grew up. I love creative solutions to preservation like this one.

I have to say that one of my favorite things about moving home to Ellensburg has been all the events our small town puts on. There are farmer markets in the summer, beer festivals, parades, story times at the library, and all number of holiday going-ons. Recently Garrett and I took part in a different kind of event: Love and Logic parenting classes. I know, I know, parenting classes. Ugh. But these have been a game changer for us. The series of classes was put on for free at our local library and they are hands down the best thing to happen to our family since Daphne’s arrival. Our mornings, especially, run 100% smoother and our whole home is happier for it. Anyway, just thought I’d share in case any of you have wondered about them.

Our Bryant House renovation (now an Airbnb) // Master Bedroom

Well it’s Friday again, meaning I’ve rounded up lots of great links from the web. Grab a cup on coffee and dig in!

What to do with an ugly carport. Holy moly, Sarah this makeover is gooooood!

We’re taking the kids to Orcas Island this week for camping and fun. The boys have their own sleeping bags and I wanted to get Daphne this cutie, but Garrett convinced me to wait another year until she’ll actually be able to use it. Always the realist.¬†pssst:¬†If you have any kid-friendly restaurant and activity recommendations for Orcas Island please share them!¬†

Ten ways minimalism will improve your life.

Baked coconut donuts. These are definitely on my to-do list for National Doughnut Day, which just so happens to be today (so go treat yourself!).

Inspiration from Instagram: this vibrant wallpaper (and spindle bed), fun family living in an RV, a dreamy project, a cute henhouse, and this layered bedroom.

An outdoor space in the desert. This almost makes me want to live in the desert…almost ūüėČ

Have a great weekend!



*disclosure: We use affiliate links.  If you make a purchase through one of the links, we may receive a small commission at no cost to you.  Affiliate links is one of the ways we keep this blog running, so thanks for supporting the Grit and Polish!

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