Well, well, well. Look who is FINALLY getting around to the post she meant to get to last December. Ha! If you’re just tuning in, the blog title may have given away the fact that we are a military family. Military bases come with lots of amenities, one of those being housing. If you’re anything like me, you are curious about what the housing looks like behind those guarded gates. I’m always looking at housing pictures from other bases, just because it interests me! For the overwhelming majority of my husband’s career, we have lived in military base housing and we love it. I will admit, this is some of the nicest housing I have ever seen, especially for being lower ranking enlisted housing! I feel so, so blessed living here and having this wonderful space to come home to. So, if you read yesterday’s post about how the Marine Corps can really throw you for a loop, this post will balance it out! This is our third house here on this base, and ironically we brought each baby home from the same hospital to a different house. Military life comes with a lot of moves. Since we tend to move a lot and have no control over frequent changes that seem to surprise us, I have really wanted to document each stage of our life before it’s gone. After all, the homes military kids grow up in aren’t their “forever homes.” They’ll never get the experience of graduating high school from the house with all of their childhood memories. And given that you never know exactly how long you’ll stay somewhere, I got to unpacking and decorating right away. Though I’m pretty sure all military families have at least one unpacked box from their last move that just never gets unpacked – and 573 little colored inventory stickers on everything they own that seem to pop up no matter how many you throw away. Or, if you’re like us, multiple colored inventory stickers from multiple moves! So, I’ll stop talking and get to the pictures. These are the “living spaces” in our home – a glimpse at nearly our entire downstairs because it is a very open floor plan!
We don’t have a true entryway in our home, as it leads into the first “formal dining room.” All of the floorplans in base housing are essentially the same, and I don’t know a family with kids in our neighborhood that doesn’t use this room as a playroom. Given that we were walking our guests right into a playroom, I wanted to make it feel separate from that space. And, it also needed to be practical since we are kicking of shoes and dropping diaper bags at the door most days.
These DIY hooks are a lifesaver. They let us have five different bags out at a time without looking like a cluttered mess. Right there are two of the hubby’s work bags, a diaper bag, and my work backpack, dog leashes, and a fresh uniform. Things that need to be ready for the next day or are used frequently get hung here – off the floor and table!
I have been on a real farmhouse sign kick lately. I bought a few from Hobby Lobby around the house, but I really wanted to personalize some, and the sticker price on Etsy had me realizing I could make six for the price of one! It was certainly a learning experience and you won’t find me opening up an online shop to sell them anytime ever, but I am so proud of how they turned out! This one, especially.
Here is our front room that is purposed as a playroom!
And into the house and main living area. The remainder of the downstairs (living/dining/kitchen) is like one giant room. Our dining table is smack in the middle of the house. I keep the leaf in it, so we can seat eight comfortably. I just love having guests here to eat around this table! For the longest time, I held bible study at this table once a week and we would cram 12 chairs in, until we decided we outgrew the table and the couch is more comfortable! I love having the table in the middle of everything, because you can sit down and still be a part of whatever craziness is usually happening. Currently, we have two boosters and a hand-me-down high chair waiting for Aubrey to get a little bigger! There are very few things I would ask for in a forever home that we don’t have in this one, but the top two would be to live somewhere not attached to someone (we never have, ha!), and n.o. v.e.r.t.i.c.a.l. b.l.i.n.d.s! I can’t stand those darn things, yet I’m just not crazy enough to invest in blinds for a temporary home. But! I did whip up that Fixer Upper-inspired black fabric awning with some boards, staple gun, and fabric, and I think it makes the sliding door look 50x better!
This sign is opposite our dining table and I just love it. A local military wife who has a shop made it for me!
And, a glimpse into our kitchen.
Our ‘homecoming wall’ is one of my very favorite parts of the house! This is home to all of our deployment pictures. Some of the best days of my life, right up here on this wall. Just looking at these pictures makes my heart start pounding thinking about how special those days were after so many months of waiting and worrying and praying. The hubby joked after I made it that we’ll have to move it somewhere else eventually because we won’t have enough space – but for now it’s right in front of my face every time I walk in the front door and I love it! That bottom left picture is when Steve met Mitchell, our first baby, for the very first time. So many emotions on this little wall!
The kitchen. Last week, I ordered a big sign that says “commissary” for up above the cabinets. I love tying in things that are meaningful to us in our decor, so I tend to stick to faith and military trends! I can’t wait to pick up the sign when we get back from our trip and finish up the cabinets for my next project.
My view from the kitchen. Or more accurately, the hubby’s view since I’m a very lucky wife and he does a lot of the cooking!
And into our living room! We spend a lot of time in this space, and I really love it! My favorite nights in here are Friday nights, because you’ll find all seven of us (dogs included) snuggled up on this couch watching the latest kids movie release with pizza and popcorn! Our little Friday night ritual is the best!
My most favorite First Fridays find. (Kansas City must-do!)
The most recent change I made to the house, besides finally finishing all of my farmhouse signs, was moving the dogs into the living room! Their kennels were in the garage since we moved into the house in November (when it was cool enough for them!), but it seemed to turn to summer overnight, so we moved them on in. It was a big open space, and as much as I didn’t want big wire kennels in the pretty living room, I didn’t want them cooped up the closet either! They’ll probably stay put until the day after Thanksgiving when I need room for the Christmas tree!
I got really lucky, because the carpet guy was at a move-out house across the street on the day of my project, and I asked him if he had any carpet to spare since they throw it away. Not only did he have the carpet to match the rest of our house, he brought over the “like new” pieces from the spare room of the house, cut a perfect piece to go under the kennels (I can slide them around for easy cleaning!), and carpet pads and carpet for inside the kennels! He certainly did not have to take the extra time to come across the street and go the extra mile, so we were very appreciative of his hard work that make for some happy dogs! They really haven’t been in their kennels since Aubrey was born, but since I’m going back to work in a few short weeks, we kennel them for the four days a week I am at work. Sadly they can’t quite be trusted, but we are working on it! Most days, I try to let them out at lunch time, but luckily they are pretty good kennel dogs! Our biggest challenge is they want to be in the kennel together, and they pout when we separate them in their own spots. You’d think two 75 pound German Shepherds would want their own space, but I guess they really love each other!
Another one of my very favorite house projects – those DIY shelves. So easy, so cheap, so cute, and so practical! That sign up there was my very first farmhouse sign, and even though it’s not perfect, I just love it to pieces.
I can’t remember where we got this bucket, but we’ve had it forever and it’s a perfect (out of reach) spot for their dog bones!
And since I was going farmhouse sign crazy last week (just ask the hubby) and had a bunch of these blank signs laying around, Zoe and Loki even got their own signs!
We have the laundry/half bath/office areas tucked back in this nook. I love that little desk in there. It could not be more practical. That’s where my “big” computer goes. It’s where I do most of my picture editing/blogging, and all of my picture organizing. The best part is that the hubby can watch his hockey on the television and I can edit away at the computer, and we can still be hanging out together!
Still can’t believe this little blog was featured in USA Today last year! I love the spread they did, so much that it made it up next to my desk in its own frame!
Our grow chart, now with THREE kids heights on it. This board represents so many dreams come true. Growing up, my parents tracked my height (and my brother’s) on the wall. Since we’re not going to be staying put, this sign is the perfect solution because it can go with us anywhere!
A little glimpse into our half-bathroom, mostly because there’s another farmhouse sign in there that I am really proud of and really love.
And onto the upstairs. That little map mixed in there is Spain. I found it in a little antique shop in Concord, MA, and thought it was a perfect way to remember our amazing trip to Spain we took last January!
Anyone else have kids and suddenly become a big fan of staircase landings, submitting to the logic that at least your kid will inevitably only fall half as far? Ha!
And my big ‘unfinished’ project is a huge open wall we have in our upstairs hallway. Someday I’ll finish it and get it up here on the blog. Maybe in another six months. 😀
Finally! All of our living spaces documented – check! In case you missed any of the other rooms I have up here on the blog – here’s a quick peek at them and the links if you’re interested!
MITCHELL’S ROOM – Coming to the blog really soon!
Now that you’ve seen our base housing, any other milso bloggers out there with pictures of base housing? Share them with me, please! It’s fun seeing how the other branches live! And that wraps up my night. I’m curled up in bed on our vacation listening to all three babes breathing softly and I can’t think of a sweeter sound in the whole world. The girls are snuggled up in their Pack&Plays and Mitchell is right here in Steve’s spot (since the military sent him to jump out of airplanes when we already planned this trip – biggest bummer). I’m off to snuggle up this boy of mine until Aubrey wakes me up in the morning! ❤