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    Hey there! I'm Amanda and I'll be your co-pilot today. Along with my handy husband, Ben, we're remodeling our second house. We're avid DIY-ers, tackling large and small projects while raising two rambunctious boys. Thanks for following along on this wild journey!
    Photo by Jana Graham Photography

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Penny Pinching

You know those squished souvenir penny machines?  Well, I kind of can’t resist them.  Do you have this problem too?  If I’m visiting a place I’ve never been before, I get a penny.  In an effort to display reminders of fun and happy times, I pulled them out of a bowl.  And popped them in the small shadow box on the mantel previously filled with the boys’ hospital bracelets.

Squished Pennies in Frame

Not that their hospital bracelets don’t remind me of good times, but they just weren’t mantel material.  A penny Ben and I made on our first official date at the Mall of America, another the boys and I made in Duluth a few summers ago, and two more from our honeymoon in Savannah.

Squished Pennies Detail

In other fireplace news, it’s finally grouted.

Grouted Fireplace Tile

Grout residue is stuck to the border trim, so a touch up is in order.

Tile Edging to Touch Up

Such is life.  Now I’m off to do some more work on this irresistible cutie.


And work on potty training Ev, which he is strongly resisting.  Wish me luck!

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  1. Love it-for what it’s worth, my number 2 boy was 4 before he was fully potty trained and #1 was 3.5, but they were both ready (not night-time, that’s a chemical thing that usually comes later) and it was quick and fairly painless…but leading up to it, ugh! May the force be with you :)

    • Hi Sara!

      Vincent was a little over 3 when he was potty trained. Ev likes wearing underwear, but doesn’t understand that he has to tell me before going to the bathroom. I’m hoping he’ll get it soon, or I’ll be doing at least a load of laundry each day. Thanks for the encouragement!


  2. Cute idea! My son collects flat pennies and we store them in a piggy bank. I like the idea of displaying them, because then you get to reminisce on the adventures more!

  3. John Grout

     /  August 10, 2013

    Great work here…


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