Monday, November 4, 2019

Now, Where Was I?

I'm still not sure where I was, but I can tell you where I'm at now... In total chaos! Nothing is finished, my house is a wreck and I have no business sitting down to write a post (or to even have worked on mini projects a little today). But honestly, I really needed a break from real life renos! Let me catch you up...


My last progress post I told you that Russ was in the mood to make a few improvements to our family room. This is what it has looked like for the most part over the last nearly 12 years:


Emptied and ready to change the paint color.


Russ gets to roll the ceilings because he's taller than me. I get to do the cutting in.
Notice how there is a new pony wall separating the family room from the kitchen. Now we'll have room at the new counter for four more to eat when family gathers here. There is also a gate to keep the puppies out unless we want them in.


Ceiling painted and walls primed. Part of the flooring had to be removed and then reinstalled.


The builders used a paint color on all of the walls and ceilings that I like to call Dead Skin. This ceiling was the last of that color in the house. Notice how much lighter real ceiling paint makes the room. And the soft sage-y green helps a lot, too!


What a mess! And the puppy you see is our son Ande's. Her name is Thug Rose, after the MMA fighter. Despite her name, she is a sweetheart and likes to come hang out at grandma's house with the other puppies - even in chaos!


We never liked the recess above the fireplace, and it was too high for the TV anyway. Russ closed it up and it looks much nicer. The new countertop on the pony wall will come in handy. The new wood flooring is supposed to arrive tomorrow, then needs to acclimate for a week before we can install it. So our chaos will go on for a while...


And of course, since the kitchen is technically connected to the family room, it was time for it to be painted, too. Here is what the kitchen has looked like since our first year here:



The problem is, I can't pick the color!!! No matter what, I have to make a decision by Friday, and have the rest of the room emptied out. I am leaning toward the peachy one on the left. It's called Chai Latte, which I love to drink!



Meanwhile, I just really needed a mini session. So in the midst of all the chaos and endless To-Do's, I played for a while today. I printed some fabric for the chairs in each of the roomboxes...


I used some strange looking plastic foliage from my drawer to make a couple planters for the atrium windows. They look a little like a Joshua Tree, and with a little paint and texture on the trunk, then some chalk on the leaves, they look pretty good.


I used some grapevine and some twigs from a huckleberry bush as the branches for cloud bonsai.


Secured in the pot with hot glue...


Then Tacky glue and a layer of Paperclay...


Then another layer of Tacky Glue...


Then a topping of railroad gravel...



Let set, and then the pots are ready for some clump foliage...


xxx



Apply a generous amount of Quick Grab Tacky Glue to the end of the branch, then form the clump foliage around it and hold until set.


They will look like the gardener has been slacking, but once they are fully dry and set to the branch...


You can trim and shape with small scissors. To set them, Scenic Cement works, but is kind of messy to apply. I prefer cheap super hold hairspray. A few light coats works well.


Now, I am afraid my play time is over for a bit. :O(
I must go back to work on the real life demands. I hope to be back before too long with more mini progress, and to let you know if Chai Latte made the final cut.

xo xo,
Jodi


xxx

46 comments:

  1. Las obras de las casas..parece que nunca terminan! pero luego estarás contenta con el resultado,ya lo verás!!!
    Las plantas te han quedado muy aparentes,no hay como tener un poco de imaginación y de eso tú tienes muchísima!!!!!
    Besos.

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    1. Gracias Pilar! ¡Será agradable tener todas las habitaciones terminadas y volver a una casa que funcione normalmente! ¡Me alegra que te gusten las plantas de atrio!

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  2. Your new and improved living room is quite lovely Jodi and I know that your kitchen up-grades, are not far behind.
    Moving the t.v. to a lower wall position, was such a good idea and the filled in alcove above the fireplace looks Great!
    And Boy oh boy do I hear you when it comes to picking paint for the kitchen since, I'm struggling with that dilemma as well but [If this helps you any]: I'd keep the paint in the kitchen, the same sage-y green as in the living room, since the 2 rooms are visually open to each other, and what could be more appropriate for a kitchen than "Sage" ;)

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    1. Thank you for the Sage advice and the encouragement, Elizabeth, lol! I always say that if I had the budget for a total re-do I'd know exactly what I want. It seems I am always challenged with having to keep most of the old decor and make it look new, so it is much more difficult! I had planned on recovering the cornices and even bought a darker sage suede to do them in, then preferred the old ones instead! Changing my mind every few hours is the problem! I like the idea of going with the same color in the kitchen, too, but in certain lighting throughout the day I am not convinced that I love the sage. It becomes kind of "Institutional Hospital" I may just give up and go with an impulse, and then in a year I will be painting again. Oh brother! I may also wait to do anything until my prayer is answered. In the form of a perfectly colored lightning bolt which streaks across the sky above my house! I hope your kitchen color dilemma is solved in a much less dramatic and satisfactory way, lol!

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  3. Your improved living room looks wonderful already, Jodi, you'll see that after the work is done you'll enjoy!! It also seems to me that our houses always have new plans in mind for us ;).... Regarding the color for your kitchen: I'm with Elizabeth :).
    Thank you for sharing with us how you made the bonsai trees, very clever of you!
    Hugs, Ilona

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    1. Thank you, Ilona! This house has always wanted to be colored in spices, but it's time to lighten things up! I may just go with the sage for the kitchen, and learn to love it, lol! The bonsai are a fun and really simple way to add a bit of nature to a space! I'm happy you like them!

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  4. Picking paint - I am full of 'help' with anyone else's - my own...... I had seriously twelve paint samples on my last kitchen paint job and then went for something completely different - luckily I ended up liking it. I think change is really hard even when you don't like something - you do get used to it and it seems like that's the only answer. OK - I am with Elizabeth - stick with the same colour as the family room - otherwise you have the challenge of finding a colour to go with your units and it has to go with the colour in the family room area - sage is lovely against your wood units and of course it is quietly happy with the space next door. Got husband chomping at the bit to go out so may speak again later.

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    1. Ha ha! I am exactly the same way, Marilyn! I am a genius at picking for other people and lousy for myself! I had about 12 chips picked in varying shades of blue before we got the green on the walls. Blue? What am I thinking!!! Thank you for your advice about going green in the kitchen - that may be the most reasonable and logical answer!

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  5. Hello Jodi. I love the bonsai's. this is a great guide into making potted shrubs.

    And regarding kitchen wallcolours, If you decide on green I would not use the same shade of green. Perhaps a colour that is two tints darker than the living space. The light wood of the cupboards compensate the darker green of the kitchen. Then the individual functions in the room stay clearly defined but the room as a whole is enhanced at the same time.

    However. If you want two contrasting colours. I would go with the peach. :-)

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    1. Thank you Huibrecht! I like the idea of staying with the same color and just changing the intensity. I was surprised at how well the old red and orange decor stuff complimented the green walls in the family room, and with so much of the same red and orange decor in the kitchen, it might be the perfect answer!
      I am glad you find the shrub making helpful! It was so nice just to relax into mini making again!

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  6. Husband-initiated redecorating is very rare, but look how calm and inviting it is already. I’m with the others in using that lovely sage in the kitchen as well. You could still bring in the peach as an accent, like on that small window-wall by the fridge. This is like a preview for me; after 14 years, we are about to update our kitchen. I’m taking the cowardly way out, we hired a ”design-build” company so we don’t have to make all the decisions. Designers are worth the cost because they also serve as couples counselors while arbitrating color decisions.

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    1. That is so true! Usually it is me pointing out the benefits of household projects that leads us to the chaos. But it's great to see Russ excited about making much needed updates to our home!
      I love the idea of an accent wall, Sherrill! That is how it is now, with the orange wall that wraps around the hall to the entry. I love the effect, but am just ready for lighter and brighter spaces. I am going to give that some good consideration!
      Oh how fun! I know how exciting it is to get to update your kitchen after so many years! And, it is so smart to use the design-build service! Especially if you can and are getting to wipe out the old and start completely fresh. A neutral "professional" opinion can take the debate right out of the equation and get you both on the same team! Russ and I used to never disagree about anything. Once we hit our 30th anniversary, we seem to have moved into a different reality, lol! So very smart to have the design help!! Then the sky is the limit and you can really love the new space! I hope you'll share what you do on your blog! It will be neat to follow along!

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  7. Wow! So much progress already. Despite the fact that I like chai latte (in the paint and in real life), I vote for green in the kitchen, too. It just is so much easier when one room opens onto another. We have almost that exact shade in our living room and went one shade lighter in our dining room (because it's a smaller room). I like the idea of going a shade or two darker, too, since you have light cupboards. We have original mahogany woodwork in our living/dining, and that green just makes the wood glow! So glad you took some time for a "mini break." It's necessary for mental health. And those bonsai trees are wonderful!

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    1. I'm so glad you agree with everyone on the green! You guys are making the decision so much easier for me! I totally love and admire the work you all do in mini, so having your opinions on real life decorating is wonderful!
      I bet that green with your mahogany cupboards is so beautiful! I am a real fan of warm colors, and the sage really does have a warm read to it. Might be nice to not have to figure out a spot for the transition to another color, too. I'm getting closer to a decision! Thanks Deb!

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  8. You have a beautiful house.
    The new mini plants are fantastic and look real.

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    1. Thanks Faby! It has received a lot of use over the years needs a little TLC! Luckily, I am no stranger to painting, lol! Glad you like the the little planters!

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  9. Great projects - both full scale and mini! The new colors are a great improvement.

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    1. Thanks Troy! Some of the family never really liked the orange and didn't get why I'd ever do that to an inside room. :O) Those are the beige loving people, lol!

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  10. que bueno que a pesar de las obras encuentres tiempo para las miniplantas

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    1. ¡Si! ¡Después de dos semanas sin ningún mini trabajo, mi medidor feliz se estaba agotando! ¡Espero poder tener todo lo grande envuelto pronto y volver a toda la mini fabricación!

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  11. ¡Ánimo ya queda menos!Dentro de poco descansarás satisfecha con el resultado.
    Preciosos los bonsais.

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    1. Gracias isabel ¡Todos me han ayudado a decidir y ahora puedo seguir adelante! ¡Espero que también hagas un poco de bonsai!

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  12. I agree with your kitchen paint choice.

    And I love your bonsai trees.

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    1. Thanks Sheila! Russ and I discussed last night after I'd read the comments to him. It looks like we are going with the sage! I hope that I'll believe it was the right choice after it is finished, lol!

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  13. Wow, so much progress - you're quite a good team! It's amazing what difference a new color scheme makes! And I would join the choir shouting "sage" but in a different tone, like Huibrecht suggested, so it's the same color scheme but the different departments can stand alone.

    I've learned the impression "pony wall" today and I must say this is a very clever idea… and a good looking one too. Okay, I must confess I'm not only seeing the possibility to place guests there… I see the decoration possibilities. *LOL* And what really made me grin is the picture showing all your work stuff before the work area. Ah, it's the same everywhere… you start with let's say 5 tools and end up with what feels a 2-truck-worth amount of stuff.

    Your playtime - which I would call therapy time - really paid off. Your bonsais look great and I really like the big ones reminding of pine trees. Have fun whatever you do! ;O)

    Hugs
    Birgit

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    1. Thank you Birgit! When Russ and I are on the same page with ideas we do make a great team! The problem happens when both of us want to be the boss, lol! We both tend to take charge and think we know best ha ha! So if we play nice, it's good! I had him pick up more of the same sage paint for the kitchen, and today we will begin to edit out the old colors with primer. It's always exciting because the space becomes much larger that you think it is!

      I am happy that we could teach you a new construction term! For years I have been trying to keep Woodson out of the family room. We had a large metal folding gate across the opening for a long time but then he learned to climb it! He's too smart for our own good! So a pony wall the height of the counters, which he can not climb, seemed a great idea. And because I have confiscated the dining room as my hobby room, we lost our place for big groups to eat together. Adding a countertop to the pony wall was the perfect solution! It freaks out the conservative saver in me to be spending money when Russ is not earning any, but I know we'll always be okay so I just need to enjoy and appreciate the opportunity. TMI?

      I love your assessment of the area and tools! It's so true - they are still growing because we keep coming up with other creative ideas and expanding our work list!!! I am sitting here staring at the cans of chalk spray paint that will eventually make it onto my grandma's hutch! More work, but it should pay great dividends!

      I long for more mini play time as it's just as satisfying but much kinder to my back and muscles, lol! Soon, it will all be finished, I hope!!!

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  14. Me encanta Jodi como te ha quedado tu sala de estar, el color elegido lo hace mucho más cálida, yo pondría el mismo color en la cocina. No se como sacas tiempo para hacer miniaturas, el resultado es muy ingenio y han quedado unos bonsái geniales.Besos:-)

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    1. Muchas gracias Rosa Maria! ¡He tomado el consejo de todos ustedes que admiro tanto y también he decidido por el sabio para la cocina! Vivir con él en la habitación familiar durante unos días me ha llevado a que me guste mucho el ambiente amplio y luminoso, ¡y creo que leerá lo mismo para la cocina! ¡Crucemos los dedos y pedimos oraciones! : O)
      Los bonsai son muy divertidos porque son prácticamente infalibles y se ven bien incluso cuando estás teniendo un mal día, ¡jaja!

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  15. Your house starts to look beautiful, nice light colors. And in between you made beautiful little trees and bushes, looks great!

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    1. Thank you, Gonda! Neither the big house activities or small modern projects were in my mind at all for the fall, but life surprises you in the most delightful ways! :O)

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  16. Mi piace molto lo stile che state dando alla vostra family room. Io amo i colori freddi nell'arredamento, io credo che siano davvero rilassanti e riposanti. Il verde delle pareti è davvero bello, rende tutta la stanza fresca e luminosa! Nella cucina, penso che sceglierei il colore chiaro a sinistra. Anche il rosa a destra è carino, ma il giallo/arancione al centro è molto scuro per me. Io non amo i colori così forti. ^_^
    Nel frattempo avete scelto?
    Belle le piante che hai realizzato, mi piace questo effetto-bonsai. Molto interessante anche la ghiaia da ferrovia. Credo sarebbe adatta anche al mio mini-giardino.
    Buon lavoro, spero che usciate presto dal caos!

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    1. Grazie Elenè! Il verde salvia sta davvero crescendo su di noi, e penso che adoreremo le stanze insieme quando saranno tutte rimesse insieme!

      Sono felice che ti piacciano i piatti che ho realizzato! Così semplice e facile da fare. E spero che tu possa trovare un uso per la ghiaia della ferrovia nel tuo paesaggio! È una perfetta copertura del terreno in paesaggi in miniatura nei climi più caldi!

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  17. You are lucky to be able to renovate one room at a time. Imagine the chaos spread all over the whole house. It will be beautiful and more adapted to your needs when finished. Enjoy the results.
    The plants and planters look wonderful. Thanks for sharing the tips.
    Hugs, Drora

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    1. That is so true, Drora! It really is a luxury to work at our own pace and to have Russ home to do it. Many times in our lives this was not the case, though we had stronger bodies back then, lol! The work is looking promising, and it feel great to have everything really underneath clean again as we go!
      I am happy you like the plants! I love it when something creative is so simple and stress free!

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  18. Hi, Jodi - What fun you're having! I know the chaos isn't easy to live with, but I love all the anticipation and possibilities of a re-do - and the refreshment of a new look. I think you've already made your decision about the kitchen paint color, but I have to add my approval of continuing the sage green into that room, in either the same shade or a darker one. (Of course, I'm partial to the sage green - we've had that color for 14 years and I'm not tired of it yet!)
    You've made some good decisions; I like the new TV arrangement and the closed-in recess above the fireplace, and I know you're going to love the new counter top with extra seating space. You and Russ are doing a wonderful job making all the changes, and the results are going to be well worth the temporary clutter and chaos!

    I think I'm in love with your bonsai plants and planters! What a clean, contemporary look of all the plants - perfect for your new room boxes. Thank you for the detailed photos and instructions. My ten-year old great-grandson has been asking me to make him a mini house suitable for a bachelor hero with super powers - and seeing the stark simplicity of those plants has inspired a bunch of ideas for a super-bachelor pad! Junior and I thank you!

    I'm eager to see the next installment of the family room/kitchen makeover!

    Marjorie

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    1. Thanks Marjorie! We did indeed decide on the same sage green as the family room, and the first coat and cut in looks promising! If you've loved the sage in your house that long, I feel even better about it! Still a couple more days of hard, physical labor, but then it's just a matter of taking all my stuff and deciding where to put it back for a fresh start. That's a great feeling!

      I have never been able to make the electronics look cohesive with the decor, but we just do our best! I am happy you think the TV area looks good!

      I'm so glad to hear you like the bonsai, and especially that you'll be able to use the idea for your grandson's bachelor house! What a fun project and one that will be treasured by him his whole life! I hope you'll share the progress with us on your blog!

      I'll post photos when I've got everything put back, though it will look more like real life than a decor magazine, lol! Dog beds and blankets covering the sofa are just one of the things in my house you'll never see in Traditional Home magazine! 😃 Thank goodness we have mini houses to decorate in perfect magazine ready fashion!

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  19. jodi, the green is fabulous! the room is much lighter - russ and you did a great job! isn't it fun to redecorate the real home??? :-))

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    1. Thanks Marion! It was a dramatic change, and a very welcomed one! As you can imagine, that end of the house was always very dark, and even more so in the winter. Lightening it up with the wall and ceiling paint has been like adding six additional can lights, and it feels much lighter! I did have to use all of my old decor, but it seems to look livelier against the green. So a good compromise, and I left some $$ in the bank account, lol!

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  20. Hi Jodi! I am so so so late to comment lately.... (Just call me late!) But I am trying to get caught up! Your home renos are making an enormous difference in your living spaces! WOW! I love the lighter color in the family room... it feels fresh and breezy (thinking oceans...) And the kitchen will be refreshed no matter which color wins! Sometimes just making a change becomes necessary! I do look forward to seeing which color wins! (My kitchen is bright orange and deep green with silver and gray cabinets... and sunflowers and morning glories in a mural.... but I am a bit crazy with color!):)
    As for sneaking in some mini time.... it is Therapy!!! With all the upheaval going on... it is Essential to make tiny little things! (I tell myself that all the time!) I love the way your plants turned out and it is always good to see the steps up close with the ingredients spelled out! Thank you for that! And now I want to see where that fabric got used....? But no rush... it can be for the next "therapy day" which will be really necessary while the kitchen is being painted!!! Keep up the great work! :):):)

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    1. Hi Betsy! Me too - I feel as though I can not catch up since last August! I really like to feel on top of everything, so this constant state of "catching up" is discouraging! Oh well, hopefully it is only to make me stronger and life will return to "normal" soon!
      The lighter color on the walls and the ceiling have made such an impact! The space feels much larger, and definitely brighter which is a welcome feeling this dreary time of year! I love color as you do, and I bet your kitchen is lively, warm and inviting with that color combination! I know that mural must be amazing! Your art work hits me right in the joy spot! Please do post a photo sometime!
      Russ has three days of work this week while all the boys (the group of 4 contractors that all work and share projects together) wait for permits and other subs to finish so they can go full blast again. During these days, I will try to sneak in as much mini time as possible to sooth my restless soul! It truly is therapy for me, and I find when I don't stop to play, my anxiety levels skyrocket! Plus, I have this looming deadline which I am not allowed to talk about until around Christmas time. I hope I can make good use of the time and that I am able to pick right back up where I left off!

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  21. That's so exciting to renovate (but not when you are going through it and picking out paint colors)! I still get pleasure from our renovation and it's been 2 years! It looks great. And I love the bonsai trees.

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    1. Thanks Penelope! When you're in the thick of it, it just seems to drag on with having so many little tasks that are waiting for other things to be finished. I do not function well in chaos, so will be so relieved to have every last thing in place as soon as possible! It's so encouraging to hear that after two years, you still thing the chaos was worth it and still love what you created!

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  22. Hi Jodi. Renovations are lots of work but I am sure it will be nice to have the space updated. I like the chai colour too, and I guess by now you have probably decided. Hope you get the new flooring in without any problems!

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    1. Hi Shannon! Now that I can see the end I am happy that we did it. Sometimes if you don't just close your eyes and jump you find too many good reasons not to start in the first place! I did go with the same green into the kitchen and down the entry hall, but I am saving the Chai Latte idea for when I need to paint the laundry room again! I do like it a lot in certain lighting. We start the flooring this morning, and then can get to the last of the other finishing tasks. Although Russ now thinks we need to add more can lights in the kitchen (facepalm). I think I can safely hope that things will be back together by December 1st if I keep Russ under control, lol!!

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  23. Jodi - love your blog and the peek into your own abode (as opposed to just the mini ones!) Isn't it funny we have the same problems in real life and in mini life (picking colors, etc!). That's one of the reasons I love miniatures - I can use color combinations I might not use in real life! Thanks for the very realistic plant ideas! You are a prolific writer and miniaturist!
    Kendra

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  24. Hi Kendra! Thanks so much for stopping by and for your kindness! It is funny how we have the same issues whether it's in real life or in minis, and the mini ones are just as important to us mini nuts, lol! And I also get a lot more brave when it comes to the mini decor, and often if I love something I have seen in min I will adopt it in the RL house! I think us mini enthusiasts are designers and architects at heart!

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