The Happiest Barn


Our barn was SO very happy this weekend! We finally hosted an event–my sister & singer songwriter Christa Wells had an all day writer’s circle gathering along with 42 lovely women. Here are a few of them.






emily's instagram




Our next event is Hope*ologie Live on November 15th, tickets are sold out.

We’ll continue to add more gatherings, I’m putting together a crafty day and as soon as I have that planned I’ll let you know!



31 days!

Can you believe that Wednesday is October 1st?!

That means it’s time for the 6th annual 31 Days Writing Challenge and it’s not too late to join in. This year 31 Days has its own website. Be sure to sign up here (look for a special email from us tomorrow evening or Wednesday morning with last-minute details). We also have a facebook group if you want to hang out and ask questions or get feedback on your buttons.

Want to join in but you aren’t sure what you’ll write about or how you’ll write for 31 days straight? This year Kate (the new host of Five Minute Fridays) has organized 31 Days worth of writing prompts, the challenge is to join in 31 days, but then using the writing prompts, write for just 5 minutes every day. Find out more here.

Because Words Matter


The very first thing I hung on the barn walls was the word REST.

After a year of planning, scheming, hoping dreaming–we needed the visual reminder to rest.

Sometimes we focus so much on getting to a certain place, we forget to stop and enjoy it when it finally comes.

Or maybe that’s’ just me?

So now my barn is bossing me around and I’m trying to listen.

white sofa

So even though “slow” is my word of the year.

“Rest” is my mantra. My battle cry. My plea.

I want to hang those letters around my neck so I don’t forget them.

words matter

Maybe you need to listen to a word too?


Or maybe there’s a name, phrase, verse, quote, or special day you want to be reminded of, or you want to encourage someone with.


Now you can create your own set of letterpress words for your home or for a gift out of all sorts of pretty wooden letterpress block letters.

There’s a completely easy and fun interactive letterpress site where you can play all day and create all sorts of fun things.

This summer I got to see the behind the scenes-sneak peek of this website while hanging out with the sponsors of this post –the (in)courage team and we were all blown away at how user-friendly and fun (addictive) this new site is, you will love it.


You can type in the word or phrase you want to create into the “filter by word” section on the bottom left and then grab the style of letter you want. Once you get your word or phrase the way you like it, you can order it for your home, but also you can pin it, email it, tweet it, and put it on Facebook. And of course, the letterpress will tally up the cost of your blocks so you can see your  running total.

Here are a few things I created on the fun letterpress website…

i never get my name on anything

Weird named people unite, we can finally have our names on something! This almost makes up for all of those personalized bike license plates, pencils and mugs I couldn’t find when I was eight years old. Take that Amy and Jennifer!

awaken hope

There’s a phrase I’ve thought about putting in the barn. So I just used the Letterpress Blocks site to write the words, then took a screen shot, pulled it into my Keynote program (I’m a dork and use Keynote on my mac computer to make everything but pic monkey or Photoshop would work better) I removed the background and sized it correctly to overlay on one of the barn walls so I could see how it would look. How fun is that?!

words matter

These words make great wedding gifts, baby gifts, first home gifts, inside joke gifts for your BFF, business name and more.


If you make something you want to show off, be sure to hit the “share” button and tweet it, add @thenester if you want me to see it.


Katie wrote more about the letterpress blocks (in)courage — you can see the backs of the blocks and the different ways to display them, the sizes and more.

The whole time I was working on this post I had this song in my head. It’s such a reminder of the power of words and why I love this new line of blocks–they are beautiful, meaningful, fun to create and #wordsmatter …

It’s Fall Time, The Barn is Ready, And I Want You to Come Here!

free fall decor easy

Tomorrow is the first day of Autumn! I’m joining in with Lindsay from White Buffalo Styling Co. for her fall tour. Lindsay’s home ALWAYS inspires me, and I had the joy of meeting her last year. Be sure to check out her fall photos! Today, instead of sharing our home, I want to share our […]

Pin It

[Continue reading...]

The Office Gets a Tiny Kitchen


office kitchen by thenester featuring shelves furniture There’s a tiny little wall in my 400 square foot office/craft room/guest house/attached-to-the-barn-room. Here’s where the office started, here’s where it went for awhile, here’s what it looked like two weeks ago. As we were working on the barn, we realized it would be so great to have […]

[Continue reading...]

31 Days 2014

31 days

  This will be my sixth year of daring myself to write for 31 days on one topic during the month of October and it’s the fourth year I’m inviting you to do it with me. Thousands of crazy people have joined in the fun. Maybe this is your year? The 31 Day challenge has […]

[Continue reading...]

Barn Update :: Let There Be Paint


Chad and I are pouring all of our energy into this barn, we eat, sleep and drink it. Every thing is barn barn barn. Finally, the walls are up and painted! I wrote a barn update 18 days ago, but so much has changed, and this is the fun part! You have to see it….

[Continue reading...]

If You’re In the Midst of a Mess, Join the Club


Thursday I shared the mess that is currently my office. And you all reacted the same way I hope to react when someone shares their mess with me–you accepted me anyway. Maybe you even liked me a little more BECAUSE I shared the mess. Thank you. Revealing ourselves to trustworthy people always connects. That’s what […]

[Continue reading...]

Weekend Links to Inspire & Encourage

stuff manager

Living Room Before & After // The Natos (just wait till you see the before! such a difference) I made this cookie in a cast iron skillet this week, everyone died over how good it was. Instead of making caramel sauce I used this, and it cooked perfectly when I put in the oven for […]

[Continue reading...]

What Progress Really Looks Like


I’m putting this picture of two of our kittens in this post, in case you need to quickly scroll up and look at something cute after seeing all this mess… Once again, my office is the hardest working room. Can you imagine trying to store this mess inside our house? I’m so happy to have […]

[Continue reading...]

Why it’s Worth it to Take One Microscopic Step Forward

starting is progress

My office has been so neglected while we put all of our energy into the barn project. But every time I looked at it, it made me sad. I needed a little win. I threw dinner in the oven and ran out to my thrifted office door armed with a quart of pretty pink paint […]

Related Posts with ThumbnailsPin It

[Continue reading...]