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lest you think…


…I have my act together. I don’t.  I mean, I’m not a hot mess or anything, but I don’t ever want people to read my blog and walk away with the idea that I am churning out furniture while my hair is perfectly styled and my home is perfectly clean and my laundry is perfectly folded and put away and my children are playing perfectly together and I’m eating perfectly healthy and then getting a perfectly adequate amount of sleep each night.  That level of perfection isn’t going on in the mustard seed household and I’m sure it never will.

I told my husband the other day, “If I knew this milk paint thing was going to involve so much work and so many other people, I would’ve waited until I was ready for it and the boys were in school!”  He pointed out that there was no way I could’ve known that my little idea to sell some milk paint colors I liked in cute packaging was going to blow up all over the place!  It’s awesome, but it’s been a challenge to balance everything.  I’ve had to spend a lot of time answering e-mail and processing potential retailers.  The labels and packaging have taken weeks longer than I thought…




…and I wasn’t planning for how expensive thousands of boxes and labels would be.  (My initial thought was to order about 240 boxes and have 20 of each color.)  Well, I ended up having to order 5000 and we already have to order more!  Craziness.  Awesome, but crazy.  And I have all sorts of things around my house that have been staring me in the face…like a pair of Craig’s List chairs that really need some new fabric and a paint job…



…and we’re going to be tiling our kitchen floor (Carrera marble…purrrr)…


…and we’re also going to put wood-like laminate flooring in our family room and master bedroom.  I’m looking forward to saying buh-bye to the stained carpet and the patch of plywood under our TV console.



…and I still need to paint this board we had to use for mounting our curtain hardware.  It seems that even anchors in drywall can’t stand up to a 3 year old hanging on a curtain panel (go figure.)  The wall was so chewed up, we had to install this board to hold the curtain rod securely in place.  I need to paint it the wall color, so it’s not so in-your-face.


…and my parents, who just moved into their new home in Pennsylvania last week (I’ve been helping them paint and get settled), are waiting for me to upholster this headboard for them.



…and my white slipcovers were so nasty I had to soak them in bleach for about an hour and my blinds and ceiling fan blades are a little fuzzy.  On top of everything I’ve been doing and need to do, I have been so sleep deprived, my body finally gave into a nasty sinus infection that knocked me out yesterday.

I’m not saying all of this to complain or make it sound like I’m so much busier than everyone else.  I have a really awesome, blessed life and this is a very exciting time for me.  My business has been a bit of a freight train, though, and it’s time to squeeze the brake a little and get some balance back.  I need more sleep, more purposeful exercise, less time at the computer, more time laughing and being outside.  More time working on the things I really want to work on and less time saying “yes” to things that only clutter up my time.   I have to make time for things like a spa day that was given to me for my birthday (in April) and an eye exam and a haircut.

A part of being more balanced is eating better, so I’m getting rid of everything in the pantry that has processed corn, MSG and other not-so-great stuff.  (Don’t worry, I’m donating all of the unopened food.)


…and the cabinets are pretty sparse at this point, but it’s a start.



I’m also going to bid farewell to my beloved Diet Dr. Pepper (DDP).  I’m not saying I won’t ever, ever have one again, but honestly…it’s not the healthiest thing for me to be downing all day.  I’ve been at this place with food before and I always go back to my old eating ways, but I usually leave some bad habits behind, if that makes sense.  I rid myself of foods and then I don’t go back to them, because they don’t taste good to me anymore.  So, I’m NOT dieting.  I’m just going to be balanced and give myself the opportunity to make good choices by removing a lot of the bad ones.  We’ll see how it goes, but I am ready for it.  I’m ready to get my act together.

This is a fun ride, but I don’t want to be dragging behind just holding on for dear life.  I want to enjoy it and celebrate.  I want to be firmly buckled in, so when I go over the apex of the hill and around the loops, I can just raise my hands and scream with delight.

I’m honored to be a guest over at Brooklyn Limestone for the trash to treasure series.  I share a bit more behind the scenes of the Typewriter dresser makeover.

The winner of the Vintage Skye giveaway is…

Ann MC.

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  1. Thank you for your honesty! I sometimes think everybody else is a superwoman and I’m not.


  2. Rooting for you and hoping all the craziness settles itself soon. I’m having trouble keeping up with my own little corner of the world and can’t begin to imagine all the craziness that you’re balancing. Hang in there!

  3. April Simpson says:

    Hello! I am a faithful follower of your blog but I don’t think I’ve ever commented before! While reading your post it was almost as if I was reading something I would have written in January of this year. BALANCE – it always seemed the goal but so unattainable.
    I got an ulcer and it changed my life much for the better.
    I read two books – “Food and Healing” and “French Women don’t get fat” both of which are NOT diet books but are lifestyle books.
    I also started going to a Naturalistic doctor who is also a chiropractor and got weekly feedback about what I was doing to heal my body.
    I can report that at 31 years old I feel the best I have ever felt and feel like I’ve attained as close to what I consider ideal balance as I can have with 3 kids under 10, a job, a small farm, and a household to run.
    Thank you for your WONDERFUL blog. I appreciate you so much for your inspiration and your candid nature.

  4. I know how you feel! Life can get crazy, but pat yourself on the back for doing it the best you can at the moment!
    I have a family (my kids are almost grown) pets (5 now) a house, a part time job working with children with autism, a hubby (who is very understanding) and an antique booth space…Oh and we live with my 82yr. old mom who can sometimes be a challenge…. I need to start taking better care of myself also, I am enjoying the ride, I just need to be healthier to endure it!
    On another note! Your milkpaint is now advertised as coming soon in our antique mall- Country Roads in Orange, Ca
    I was excited to see it ! Hang on and enjoy it all! karen….

  5. HI Marian,
    I am so happy that the milk paint is doing so well. Sometimes you never know what is going to take off and you just have to go with it. Just trust that the timing is the way it was meant to be and just do the best you can. I know you are super busy right now, but with the popularity of the Chalk paint, I think your timing is perfect to have the milk paint line. Try to get some rest and I am sure it will settle down a bit once everything gets going. Its all the start up and decisions that go with it that take so much time.

  6. I am pretty much in love with your milk paint labels !!! Oh my gosh I cannot wait to try it !

    Thank you so much for your honesty Marian because it really helps when it seems like everyone out there in blog land pretty much does everything and can do everything perfectly ~

    Balance is soooo important !!

    Lots of hugs

  7. Pamela says:

    Honey I love all the stuff you do..mostly glad to see you getting rid of the processed food and diet drinks..they are what is killing us all! I’ve been free of the stuff for over a year and a half..I’ve went from extremely sick to back in the saddle (decorating)…and glad of’s to your success! I’m looking forward to all of your new ideas and waiting to try that paint! I love the way it makes old furniture look like a million bucks! You have great taste!

  8. love the behind the scenes glimpses. Keep on keeping on. I swear off 711 Nachos but seem to keep finding my way back. I’ll get there. And so will you with the DDP. Could be worse. Could be Mountain Dew (smile).

  9. Hi there!
    I’m crazy about your paint colours and wondering if I’m missing something… Do you have an online store where I can buy your Milk Paint? *fingers crossed* Please say yes!!!

  10. Peggy says:

    You are going to love laminate flooring. I know wood is all the rage, but I live in a real home with two real large dogs and three men who don’t take their shoes off before coming into the house after going to the beach, etc, etc. I’ve had wood floors and I will never go back. Laminate is practically indestructible, super easy to clean, and these days looks as good as wood but without the upkeep and the potential for scratches – I mean deep dog scratches and mini sand-type scratches (yes, I know these both well from experience).

  11. Great post! I think it’s always a good reminder for everyone that it’s not easy for any of us to balance everything.

    As for the eating…yes, I’m in that place too. My hubby has been told he should try giving up gluten so we’re all doing it. Now I’m reading about the Paleo diet…not sure I’m ready to go there yet but it’s all giving me some ideas of things I want to omit from our diets.

    Now go use that gift card!

    Fresh Picked Vintage

  12. It’s refreshing to see a successful blogger be so honest about your struggles for balance. I hear ya, sister! Well, I’m not a successful blogger, by any means (if you count 250 followers as successful. LOL), but I also struggle with balance as I try to be a mom…..a wife….a blogger….and a full-time employee working 9-to-5! It’s not easy…..but I’m glad to see that it’s not just me that struggles with balance. The bright side for you, although, is that youv’e got a thriving business and get to do what you love! I’m right behind you……. :)

    Thrift Diving

  13. congrats again on the milk paint! glad to read that not everyone is perfect and the best of the bloggers still struggle like everyone else. It’s always refreshing to remind ourselves that we are not perfect and to point out the imperfections and madness that goes on behind the scenes!

  14. Something has to give, you know? My house is always a hot mess. I try to tidy it up, but it’s still disorganized (makes my brain itch), and toys seemingly end up in the hallway, and well, everywhere.

  15. jeromechiaro says:

    Thanks for great info… videopool/a>

  16. Thank you for the inspiration! I like to see real people blogging and not people who try to be perfect. Love your site and can’t wait to go back and read more blogs!

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