She Said–Moments in Decorating

My house is cluttered.  It wasn’t always this way, but 1,000 square feet with four kids, one business, one school, one blog, and one family have left it that way.  My walls are covered in maps of the world, maps of ancient lands, the alphabet in cursive, the alphabet in print, kids art work, the planets, 5 guitars (three hanging + 2 laying around), a clay diagram of epidermises and dermises, more kid artwork, etc. . .  From the ceiling hang a mobile of the planets, a 3D wooden puzzle of a butterfly, a 3D wooden puzzle of an ant, two sequined and pom-pommed flowers, and one T-shirt hanging off our fan–I just noticed it.


I long for order and space and breathing room and peaceful moments.

My day will come, and then I will miss the ruckus and the kids.  But right now, I LOVE seeing and enjoying other people’s home decorating.  I love many styles.  I love seeing how people’s personalities are reflected in their homes.

While attending a trade show in Dallas this summer, I had the privilege of staying in such a home.  I had the place mostly to myself as my cousin, Thomas, and his wife Erin, both were out-of-town for business/pleasure trips.  Now Erin is a graphic artist, and I loved all the little “moments” that were in her house.  By “moments” I mean this. . .

. . .a place where your eye pauses and rests on beauty and composition.

Little moments of color.

Little moments of peace.

Little moments of harmony.

Little moments of humor.

Little moments of balance.

Fun little whimsical moments.

So what makes these little places “moments” instead of clutter?

Let’s looks at them and analyze them.

COLOR:  GOD created color.  Isn’t it beautiful!  And aren’t you glad we have choices in color?  Here the colors aren’t al “matchy-matchy”, but all in a family.

BLANACE:  Balance basically means both side “weigh” about the same to our eye.  Our eyes automatically weigh things.  And if our brain tells us that they are balance, then we relax.  Balance doesn’t have to mean carbon copies of each other, but the over all effect.

SPACE:  First off, please ignore my unmade bed and mess.  That has nothing to do with this post.  But look at the art above the bed.  Our eyes take in both the used space, and the unused space.  These  works of art are small, therefore, Erin used several.  And also since they are small, she didn’t “float” them up three feet above the headboard.  They would have looked lost.

PATTERNS:  What fun.  I love patterns.  You can keep them simple or you can combine  100 different patterns and still have your eyes say “peaceful”.  It is true.  Think of the illustrator Mary Englebreit.

Or the designers of Maisonnette clothing.

Some folks just have a magical touch with patterns.  The rest of us should probably not mix too many.

ACCENTS:  Any and every and all blogs on decorating always include this sentence (or a variation on this sentence) in the comments section.  “I love how there is a pop of color.”   It doesn’t have to be the color orange.  It can even be navy blue in a predominately white room.

THEME:  Erin has a theme going in her house.  It is birds.  They alight everywhere without seeming like a cluttered flock.

This “moment” is cute because there is a Black Cat Clock looking over these two birds deliciously swinging her tail.

Her plates carry out the “Bird” theme.

And although from different vendors, they all go together.

But her collection isn’t exclusive.  It includes the whimsical as well.

WHIMSICAL:  Just those fun things that you like just because they are adorable.

Like these salt-n-pepper shakers.  Aren’t they fun?  And although I don’t consider myself a feminist, I still had to check. . .

Did the male or female have more holes in their head?  Whew!  They were equal.  I could continue to love them both.

THE PERSONAL:  I seeing the personal touch in homes.  Here is a record that has a musical group called “The Buchanan Brothers”

But let me just stop talking and show you some more “moments.”

Instead of the usual soap dispenser–a glamorous bottle.

Remember, she lives in Texas.  Home of the Long Horns.

I thought about Photoshop-ing my arm to be nice and skinny or at least to add a muscle bulge, but I just left it as it actually is.

Garlic in a Mexican cup.

Their home was very welcoming.  Here are some photos not zoomed in so close.

Their entrance.

Lots of natural light, and no fussy window treatments.

Ignore that big mess on the counter, that is my doing.  I was making a gourmet meal of. . .

. . .Wal-Mart chicken strips, fries, avocado.  But please notice the smoothie.  This glass of whole fruits and vitamins and calcium MORE than counter acted the effects of my plate.

Now I included this photo because my nails are painted.  I paint my nails for weddings and now for trade shows.  Nail polish lasts a whole 1.3 days on my nails.  Dishes, kids, and real life just don’t allow me to keep my nails polished for more than 1.3 days.

Well that’s all for now folks. (Ignore my mess.)

Thanks for listening to my ramblings.



I read this cookbook while at Thomas and Erin’s.  My take away was two-fold. 1) There is a lot of Mexican food that isn’t fattening.  2) The author (Rick Bayless) made a point about the fact that all cultures have feasts.  Feasts are a part of eating–special occasions.   Feasts are a part of fellowship.  Healthy people feast.
Mexican Everyday (Recipes Featured on Season 4 of the PBS-TV series “Mexico One Plate at a Time”)

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34 Responses to She Said–Moments in Decorating

  1. brooke says:

    So fun to see all of Erin’s moments. I wish that creating balance came naturally to me. Tadd and our kids watch Rick Bayless on Saturday nights on his cooking show. It’s their Saturday evening “thing” : ) Sometime I’ll have to check out his cook book. Your nails look very pretty.


    • whitsendmom says:

      I just talked to a mom who had a shellac, and she said that the shellac surrvives dish washing and kids and life for one week and one day. She also said, that the price for a shellac had come down to almost the same as a regular manicure. Now I usually do my own nails, but I might be able to delete $30 from the grocery bill if I knew that the polish would last a week.


  2. nicole i says:

    we dined with your hubby on saturday! such fun.


  3. natalie says:

    I enjoyed the tour of the Thomas and Erin household. I hope to get there in person someday (but it might need a little Wyatt-proofing!). : )


  4. Bel McCoy says:

    Always fun to see things from your perspective!!


  5. BEL MCCOY says:

    Do you really only have 1000 sq.ft.??? That’s only 400 more than I have just for me!! These are happy years, and you seem to be enjoying them!!! Blessings, Bel

    Date: Wed, 31 Oct 2012 02:36:32 +0000 To:


  6. Dad and Mom Whit says:

    I think we need to take a trip to Texas with a stopover at Erin and Thomas. Beautiful!! With seven kids running through the house (yes, it rains in Seattle), our domain probably wouldn’t have made the front page of “Better Homes and Gardens”, but we did enjoy seeing other homes which were well designed and cared for and yours is gorgeous, Erin.


  7. slwenz20 says:

    Erin definitely has the magic touch when it comes to decorating. Sadly, not a family trait. 🙂


  8. Kelly K says:

    Okay, that apartment is beautiful. Remember your newlywed apartment?? I remember mine. Not quite so many moments there, but lotsa love. The Spouse took me to one of Rick Bayless’ restaurants last time we were in Chicago (not the super-expensive one, but the mid-price). I still remember the tamale. I am with you on the feasting, praise the Lord.


  9. Lisa Buchanan says:

    YAY! So fun to see your home, Erin! Didn’t think I ever would. Love the whimsy! Great job capturing it, Rebecca!


    • whitsendmom says:

      I just love seeing other peole’s homes! It somehow fullfulls that artistic crave for beauty in my soul.


    • wenzer says:

      Lisa, isn’t it funny? Thank the Lord for the internet… I love the peeks into your life I get occasionally as well. And if you ever are down this a-way, me and my aeropress will be at the ready!


      • Lisa Buchanan says:

        Well, since you said aeropress . . . . 🙂 How I would love that! I think Andrea should buddy-pass a group of cousins down for a day. Wishful thinking! I would request the plate (Because I know there would be a smackeral of something with the coffee.) with the two turquoise and red birds on it. Although I would probably paw through them all first just to make sure that was the one. For now, I’ll just be happy I can picture you in your darling home. Hi to Thomas from us!


  10. JoAnn says:

    I always come home from Erin’s with a new idea – and I love to see how she changes things up for the different seasons. You made their place look great, Rebecca! It was almost as good as sitting down and having a live chat with her. Thanks!


    • whitsendmom says:

      Almost as good, but not quite. I am looking forward to seeing Erin and Thomas again this January, but since we are going with all the kiddos, I think we will stay at a hote.


      • JoAnn says:

        Rebecca I meant to include this in my original post but hit send before I’d finished! Erin really enjoyed your visit as Stacey and I can attest to firsthand! She met up with us in Minnesota while you were there and we enjoyed your visit vicariously for we heard a lot of “Rebecca says…”!! Thank you for the great encouragement you were to Erin!


  11. Joanna B says:

    I spent the night there just last night! 🙂 I love it there, too. I was very flattered to have a little of my handiwork included in this post. I come away from there with ideas, but seldom carry through with them. 😦 Thanks for the tour!


  12. wenzer says:

    ::blushes:: My goodness, Rebecca, as soon as I saw this post, all I could think was “I’m so glad I cleaned!” 🙂 I so enjoyed your visit–come again any time! And that goes for the rest of you, too!


  13. trixfred30 says:

    You really do not need to worry about the nail varnish! I like the way that house looks – It obviously hasn’t been tainted by children – no way would you get a spotless coffee table with polished object d’art – the kids would embelish it with paper, cd’s playstation games, pens, cables for their phones, pens, chocolate wrappers, juice stains…wait sorry that’s my coffee table..


    • whitsendmom says:

      SO TRUE! Those cute little white birds would probably look like nice little eggs that should be cracked by my kiddos. And. . .how is it that you can make your comments so funny? I can get in a train of thoughts on a post, but I always struggle with making my comments make sense, much less retain any humor! And I saw your kitchen re-do, and it looks amazing.


      • trixfred30 says:

        Writing with Wine (as with Cooking with Wine) is the secret. I also have a condition known as VG – Verbal Gerbils – it means I am able to write drivel all day and night!


      • whitsendmom says:

        Everyone, please check out his blog at Especially if you have had a long day and need a good laugh. Especially if you enjoy British humor. Especailly if you love to cook!!!


  14. whitsendmom says:

    btw. erin is a great graphic artist. She can do webpage banners, wedding invitaions, layout for magazines, business cards, and everything else. Catch her at wenzerworks Or see some of her work on Flicker.


  15. Angie W. says:

    Love getting to see your place, Erin! And thank you so much, Rebecca, for showing it to us. I, too, long for peace, order and all things decorating but my three little monkeys make that not so very practical. I will just enjoy it all vicariously for now.


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