Summer swingasan deck dreams

May 18, 2017

Summer swingasan outdoor

A couple of days ago I bought one of those tropical oval swings properly called “Swingasan” at a near HomeGoods here in Miami. I have to admit that it wasn’t “love at first”; but to tell you the truth, the more I saw it at stores and almost everywhere in social media, the more I wanted it. See how powerful social media can sometimes be!
Anyway, when I finally decided it was time to pursuit my “Swingasan” dreams, I struck with the ugly reality of not finding the one that I wanted. After touring around 7-8 stores, I found my prince “Swingasan” waiting for me. I was so excited that I even uploaded an Instagram stories of me doing a happy dance… me of all people!
So once home we hanged it from our mango tree and I sat for quite some time. While I was there I felt this area needed an upgrade to enhance our new acquisition. So I came up with a plan; how about we build a small deck under our mango tree where the girls can play or a place where I can come and meditate?!? I couldn’t stop thinking about this and even started sketching out a plan.

I really enjoyed watching these little ones playing in their house. It brings me tears to see them this little!
Just before I took the decision of taking out the house, you can see how deteriorated it was. Part of the roof was just hanging and it already had lost the front door and part of the side bench. 
This area under the tree gave shelter to our girl’s wood doll house for a couple of year. We bought this little chateau about two years ago but it wasn’t of good quality. Time and the rough weather here in Miami took the best of their wooden “palace” and we had to dispose of it. I really felt devastated with the decision because, although that little house was a mess, my girls loved it and really made used of it.
Now that we have this swing, I thought that the idea of a floor underneath would allow the girls to think of this area as a bigger house under the tree (sans the roof). They can certainly take their toys out and play pretend. I can always provide some pillows for their comfort and for when I’m out meditating.

Summer swingasan outdoor
This quick computer sketch gives me a better idea of the proportion of the deck and how it will look overall. 
My plans are to build a 10’x14’ wood deck and to plant on both the back sides of this structure. Also, and as you might already be wondering, some garden containers will be added to some of the corner of this deck.
Here are some of the inspirational ideas I found at Pinterest.

Photo: Leroy Merlin
Photo: Onyx IV
Although the idea seems to be simple, there are some details that I know will slow this process. I just can’t wait to start sharing the progress. Don’t forget you can always stay up-to-date with me over at my Instagram account @idknowhowshedoesit.
What plants would you recommend me to use around this shaded area? Would love to read your recommendations.
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4 accessories for small entryways

May 15, 2017

accessories small entryways tiny houses

I'm so honored to be part of the HomeGoods Entushiast Pinterest board where, as a blogger, I've received compensation by HomeGoods. The opinions stated here are my own. For more updates on their products and decor ideas, you can always follow them on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram.

On small houses like ours, entryways are a rare thing. But a place to make guests feel welcome and also where we can place the mail, is a must. On our home I've recently added a small table which was perfect because of its compact size. 
To style this area and to make it functional, there are 3 things I usually like to keep in mind:

accessories small entryways tiny houses

No 1. Wall art or wall decor: I love to keep things simple, so this wall art was the perfect piece for this area. The perspective and black and white style made this spot seemed more spacious. 

accessories small entryways tiny houses

No 2. Flowers: Every once in a while I like to have flowers in a place where my guests will see them. This will make them feel welcome besides adding a fresh look in our small entryway.

accessories small entryways tiny houses
accessories small entryways tiny houses

No 3. Tray: There's always a place for everything and trays are the perfect accessory to place the keys and the latest mail. This wooden tray I found at HomeGoods is the perfect size for our entryway table. I love how it resembles a small dough bowl.

accessories small entryways tiny houses

No 4. Baskets: These are the ideal hiding place for blankets, small backpacks etc. Baskets will allow us to keep large items at hand without over crowding the entryway. This oval basket I found at HomeGoods is made out of natural fibers and has the ideal size for storing away a couple of throws.

As you can see it's easy to assign a small area where one can greet guests but also a place where you can drop-off or pick-up stuff. It won't matter how big or small your entryway is as long as it serves it purpose and makes your life easy and practical. Do you currently have an entryway area?

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Create a gallery wall using shelves

May 9, 2017

Gallery wall shelves

I'm so honored to be part of the HomeGoods Entushiast Pinterest board where, as a blogger, I've received compensation by HomeGoods. The opinions stated here are my own. For more updates on their products and decor ideas, you can always follow them on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram.

Gallery wall don't always have to hang over the wall. I recently did a refresh on my daughters' bedroom and decided I wanted to add a focal point but with a purpose: to enhance the beauty of life and self-esteem! So I chose to create a gallery wall over shelves because it will make it easier to update and change each piece without having to do a new hole on the wall.

Gallery wall shelves

I have 3 girls with different ages and tastes. Over this gallery wall I chose elements that will speak to each of them; but specially to the tween one. For her I chose phrases like "If you stumble, make it part of the dance" and "you are beautiful" (both canvases from HomeGoods). Those of you who've done the parenting job know that tweens and teens sometimes need a little reminder of how great life is and how amazing they are. So these canvases are a way into to her heart and mind.

Gallery wall shelves

Now, for the little ones, I got a cute ceramic giraffe and metallic triangles to decorate this area (both accessories are available at HomeGoods). My 5 year old who's starting to read, loved the wire phrase "BE YOU"; she simply is "her"!
Framed photos are a great reminder of sisterly love and how powerful family and love are.

Gallery wall shelves

After I finished mounting these ledges (shelves), I thought about enhancing this area a bit more. So I came up with the idea of framing this setting inside a house. This is a very delicate final touch but, instead of going "too girly", I opted for a simple white over gray silhouette.

Gallery wall shelves

To make this house I measured about 5" from the edge of each shelf outward and drew my vertical lines. For the top I measured 18" from the center of the shelves upward and join each vertical line to this center top point. I taped the lines with painter's tape to make sure that I painted withing my measurements and that I had a clean result.

Gallery wall shelves

I can't believe how simple yet striking this area is now. The beauty of this gallery wall over the shelves is that, as soon as the girls get tired of these accessories, I can easily change and replace them to create another look.

Gallery wall shelves

Have you tried creating gallery wall over shelves? If so, what did you use to decorate them?
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Modern and graphic table setting

Apr 12, 2017


I'm so honored to be part of the BHG Live Better Network where, as a blogger, I've received compensation by BHG at Walmart. The opinions stated here are my own. For more updates on their products and decor ideas, you can always follow them on FacebookPinterest, Twitter and Instagram.

When it comes to decor, I'm a huge fan of simplicity. As you may already know, our family of five plus Bella (our rescued dog) live in a small 1938 house and being practical but with style is one of my main priorities when decorating. Our dinner table is one of the first things guests notice when they visit us. So having it set beautifully is a must!


This time around I opted for a simple yet modern approach with some graphic accents to bring attention to this area. In comes some amazing accessories and dinnerware from Better Homes & Gardens collection at Walmart!


The first thing I did for this table was setting the centerpiece. Over this amazing new table runner design (called Black Tapestry) from Better Homes & Gardens collection at Walmart, I placed three glass lanterns in two different sizes; one was 11"and the other two of 7". I filled the tall one with some eucalyptus and Queen Anne's Lace flowers to emphasize its height. On the smaller lanterns I placed some white garden stones along a couple of plastic succulents I found at Walmart. Two candle sleeves (Malysian Motifalso from Better Homes & Gardens collection at Walmart, complement this modern look while pairing perfectly with the runner's design.


I love mixing and matching dinnerware! For this modern table setting I found at Walmart stores some dinner plates with a beautiful lettering on the border. These are from the Better Homes & Gardens new collection called Sentiment and their graphic design was bold but added such a stylish accent in this table's decor.


Over these dinner plates I used a Marbled Finish "salad plates" and "berry bowls" which I also found at stores from the Better Homes & Gardens collection at Walmart. You won't believe that these Marbled Finish plates are melamine so they can easily be use later on for a garden soiree or patio gathering.


One of my favorite parts when setting this table were the flatware. These "black matte" pieces from the Corin Dinner Silverware collection from Better Homes & Gardens at Walmart added such a modern punch and their prices (which are incredible) start at $1.88 a piece!


I finished this table with the Cielo Red Wine Stemless Glasses which are from Better Homes & Gardens collection at Walmart and DIYed the marble decor in the bottom which I previously shared the tutorial over at my Instagram account stories. You can follow me there to keep up with my new projects and decor ideas.


As you can see I kept the style of this table modern but simple with some accessories that brought personality to it's decor. What's your table setting style? Do you go for a global look, or prefer to keep things modern?

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