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Welcome to the Secret Garden

When we first saw our house while house hunting, we fell head over heals in love with the back yard.  Lush, beautiful, wooded and green- everyone who saw it were struck by the beauty.  We can’t take any credit- that all goes to the former owner’s wife and her 30 YEARS of work and cultivation.  When we were daydreaming about this house, we foresaw a lot of fun garden parties with friends sitting around a table, laughing, eating, drinking and sharing life.  It was so fun, after 8 months of hard work on the house to see that dream come to fruition.

We were super excited to be able to host a surprise birthday party for our dear friend, Valarie this past weekend.  She and her husband, Coby, have been really great friends of ours for years and we knew her birthday would be the perfect opportunity to have some friends over to make her feel extra special!

The vision was an outdoor modge podge of chairs, stringed lighting, lots of candles, wine and laughter.  We pulled it of I think.  We used wine bottles that we had cut ourselves for votive holders, along with tapered candle holders from West Elm (made with recycled glass), a mix of plates, and my new favorite napkins (from Anthro – the red set is sold out but the blue ones are on sale here!!)


We also were really excited to debut a HUGE project we have been working on for months now…I am super proud to present my new favorite spot- our outdoor swinging bed!

I had been really wanting somewhere to be able to read outdoors or to talk with Scott- and had toyed with a lot of different design ideas but in the end, this is what we came up with.  I have all the tutorials and more details on how we built this coming up next week- but I just couldn’t wait to share.  It’s super romantic- covered in lights and breezy curtains (that also block out bugs- YAY).  The platform swings gently from side to side and back and forth and when you look up all you see is branches, leaves and lights.  Le sigh.

We LOVED having our friends over – we are still talking (days later!) about how much we loved hosting a party and how much we have missed doing that.  Even though our house isn’t done and our hall bath is a construction zone, we are going to continue to have people over and just enjoy the moment.  It’s worth it. 🙂  And I got to use the paper stars and adorable mason jars I have been hoarding “just in case.” YES. 🙂

In other exciting news- I was interviewed on the Craftsman Tools’ Radio Show yesterday!! I thought it was going to be recorded and played in July- but I found out a few minutes before the interview that it was live.  Yikes! 🙂 I had a great time telling them about my DIY Disaster- you can check out the interview here – my piece comes on around 41:35 or so and lasts for about five minutes.  I got to listen to it when I got home this evening- it was so weird hearing my own voice, but I thought I did pretty good! 🙂

I might just have to go lay out on my outdoor bed and listen to it again under the stars and twinkling lights with the breeze gently swaying…life is so good. 🙂

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Tania Griffis is an accomplished writer, blogger, and interior designer with a Journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma. She started her popular blog, Run to Radiance, in 2011, demonstrating her design expertise through the personal remodeling of six houses to millions of readers across the globe.

Tania also owns The Creative Wheelhouse, a respected ghostwriting agency for bloggers, further showcasing her talent for creating engaging and informative content.

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    1. Thank you so much Amanda! It was a long, hard project but a great way to celebrate it all coming together 🙂

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