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It’s Mon-YAY! Did I Seriously Just Say That?

What’s New This Week

I’m taking a break from posting a menu plan for this week for a few reasons. September was a crazy month because we were gone from home so much. Between that and school, it seemed like all I wrote about was menus and recipes. So, I’m changing things up this week.

We returned from our 10-day Maui trip at almost midnight on Wednesday night. It felt like Heaven sleeping in our own bed!


The following morning, it was back to normal. We took care of our grandson, Dillon, that day, picked up our dogs from our daughter’s house, and I did school work. One thing that made the day so much easier was coming home to a clean house.

Sadly, I did not come back from Maui with a new purse. It wasn’t for lack of trying. I posted a picture of the limited edition Louis Vuitton Hawaii tote, which I thought was really cute.

When I went back to Louis Vuitton with my husband, I’d decided on the new Graceful or the Favorite. Unfortunately, they were sold out in both Maui stores and even online. I’m still looking though. I’ll keep you posted 🙂

Makenna Turns One!

On Sunday, we celebrated our granddaughter’s first birthday! Makenna turned one during our vacation. She and I are both October babies.

Dillon, Makenna, and Mason


It’s Truly Mon-YAY!

I am now a Monday lover! I never, ever thought I would love Mondays.

When I started my Bachelor’s degree program, my homework was due on Tuesdays, and then on Mondays.  That changed several weeks ago. Now, everything is due on Sunday nights, so Monday feels like my Saturday. That’s why I’ve been doing more posts on Mondays lately. It’s my first “free” day of the week.

This Week’s Goals

My main goal this week is to make my house look more fall-like. I love fall! Usually as soon as Labor Day hits, I am all over fall decorating. But, we were gone to San Francisco that weekend. Then we left for Michigan a few days later, and to Sacramento for a wedding a few days after we got back.  A week later we went on vacation until October 4th. September was a blur.

I am hesitant at setting any other goals, besides getting my homework done. I actually sat down with my planner last night and started to prepare for the week ahead. I’ve been using this planner:


But, I’d really like to have one that’s more like this:


Does anyone have any suggestions?

Have a truly blessed week. Time permitting, I will post later this week.

A New Dining Room Rug

I originally posted A New Dining Room Rug as a page instead of a post, so its being moved to the proper location.

A Little Background…

Nearly two years ago, we bought the home we are living in now. Buying this home was the beginning of a huge transformation in our lives, which I’ll talk about in a future post. A year ago, we remodeled the area that included the kitchen, dining room, and game room area. You can see it HERE and HERE. We used an interior designer, Tiffany, who helped us with design and decor and introduced us to the contractor who oversaw the job.

When the remodel project was complete, I wasn’t sure about a few items. One was whether we needed a rug under the dining table. My husband didn’t want one but I thought we needed one for aesthetic reasons. I remember that moving the chairs around on our old rug was a pain, so I shelved the idea for a while.

Time for photos!

The reason I’m telling you all this is that last week I ordered a sisal rug from Pottery Barn. It’s being delivered today. I am going to post before and after pics and see what you think of it. I think that the rug will be thin enough (it has a latex backing) to let our chairs slide easily and that the light tones will help break up the dark-on-dark tones we have going on between the table and floor.

Dining Room Without Rug

Dining Room Rug

Dining Room with Rug

Dining Room Rug

So what do you think?

Which looks better? With or without? If I keep it, should I scotchguard it? I don’t even know if you can scotchguard sisal?

Let me know in the comments below and follow my blog! As soon as I have enough followers, I am going to start having some great give-a-ways.

Our House – Before

When we relocated to our new city, we’d known for a few years that we would be moving here. My sister’ lives here and our daughters came here for college. We’d lived in a really small town before, so our girls loved how much a big city had to offer and they settled here after college.

My sister, Rachelle, was our realtor and we’d been very casually looking at homes during our visits for a few years. My husband and I started to get serious about looking in early 2015. Rachelle and I came together to look at this house first, and within 5 minutes, I knew my husband had to see it. He loved it as much as I and we put in an offer right away. The house became ours around Father’s Day that June. We didn’t settle in here full-time until November.

It’s Ours!! What Now?

As much as we loved our new house, especially our neighborhood and landscaping/outdoors, there were some things we didn’t like.The red paint against the cherry cabinets in the kitchen did not appeal to me. Several of the rooms had walls painted bright colors and I’m more of a neutrals colored person. We decided to do the kitchen modifications first – replacing the appliances, counter tops, enlarging the island, and repainting. We got a referral for a great interior designer, Tiffany, and decided to have her help us tackle the kitchen, dining room, and family room design.

Initially, our ideas were fairly simple, but as we got into actually planning it, the project grew (of course). We found a contractor to oversee the remodel and got started. These photos are of the kitchen, dining room, and family room when the house was listed for sale:

Kitchen, before


Island, before
Kitchen, before
Let’s Do This!

Eight months after we bought the house, the remodeling began. Here is the early demo (sorry for the poor lighting):



I really, really wanted a gas range top and I am so thankful they were able to run a gas line into the kitchen! You can see it in the pic below:

Well, that’s all for now. Look for more of the remodel and the “after” reveal later this week! What do you think so far?

Leave me comments below!


Manic Monday

Hi there! I haven’t posted a blog for several days though I did post directly to the Travel, Family Fun, and Beautycounter tabs. Check them out! I posted some darling photos of our play day with our two grandsons, Mason and Dillon, under Family Fun.

I had a really busy week! Earlier this year, I fell in love with Beautycounter products. Their natural scents, the way they make my skin look and feel, and how good I feel about using more natural products. In fact, since then I’ve compiled nearly the whole product line to use. I decided I wanted to share the mission of providing people with safer products, so I became a consultant. Have you heard of Beautycounter? If you’d like to learn about safer products for you and your family, visit my personal webpage HERE. We even have a line of products for babies and children!

Last night, I made my special homemade pizza. It came out soooo good. I love the recipe that I use for my pizza crust. If you follow the directions, it is virtually foolproof.  I am going to share it and a photo of my pizza on my Food & Wine link. I haven’t shared much about cooking yet, even though it’s one of my passions in life. My goal is to post a new photo and recipe each week. There, I’ve said it – so now I have to follow through…

So, Mother’s Day is right around the corner. Do you have family traditions for Mother’s Day? Post below and let me know what they are. Last year, my daughters and I went to Santana Row in San Jose for the day. We had fun shopping, having lunch, and spending time together. We decided to do that again this year, except we’re staying at Hotel Valencia there overnight. It will be a total girls trip, with us three mommies and my seven-month old granddaughter, Makenna.

Check out the tabs on the top to see what I posted last week. I will be working on uploading some before and after pics of our house this week. It’s coming up on two years since we bought out current home, though we moved in full-time a little over a year ago.

See you back soon!

My Learning Curve

Hello again! Just a quick post. Whew, these blogs sure have a learning curve. Yesterday I posted about my new dining room rug (which you can see here) but I posted it to a page instead of making it an actual post.

I have to say that overall, though, this has gone much easier than I expected. I’m experimenting with the topics menu (where is says What’s New, Home, Style, etc) so that may change. Of course, I am quickly realizing that some of the topics I want to talk about don’t have a designated spot. Like books, for instance. I looooove books and reading. As the blog grows, I would like to add a book club.

I hope you are having a wonderful day! The sun is out here and I am off to the gym. Until later…

Hello There and Welcome!

Welcome to The Feathered Nester

Hello there! I’m Renae…a wife, mother, grandmother, college student, and sister. I’ve been an empty nester for over 10 years now.  To say it was hard adapting would have been a major understatement. I’d spent most of my adult like as a mom, always on the go, doing for others, and putting myself last. Now that our girls are grown, married, and mothering their own children, we have the time and means to really enjoy life and put ourselves first.

More About Me

I enjoy cooking a delicious meal  while sipping a glass of wine and visiting warm, tropical islands. I’m not really into fashion, but I have a weakness for Louis Vuitton handbags. When I want to relax, I reach for my Kindle. I’ve almost completed my BA in Early Childhood Development. Did I say I love children? Well, I do. I have three darling test subjects who are perfect for my school assignments. My grandkids: Mason is 2 1/2, Dillon is 2, and Makenna is 7 months.

Hummm…Let’s see…

I really enjoy people. Getting to know them, sharing ideas, getting feedback, and learning from one another. My blog will focus on things I am passionate about: food & wine, travel, family, home, and style! So, take a look around (the menu bar of my topics is above) and let me know what you think.

Tell me a little about yourself below. Follow my blog, just enter your email address to the right.