get it ready. get it done. get it clean.


this is our sad barbeque area.  containing only a bbq.  against an ugly cinder block wall.  with dead/burnt plants above it.

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sean got this bbq only a year ago as a gift from my parents, but already it looks like this!  we do bbq year round, but i am still shocked at how bad it looks!  i guess the fact that i’ve never cleaned it might have something to do with it…


in walks the clean team!

ok, i’ve expressed my love for mr. clean before.  those magic erasers are my favorite household cleaning tool.  but now they have magic erasers made special for outdoor cleaning, and also an outdoor pro spray that works wonders!  along with the bounty paper towels, all of these products can be found at a home depot near you!


because of the year of build-up, it took lots of scrubbing and wiping to get this guy clean.  the magic erasers aren’t recommended for use on stainless steel, so i used the spray and the bounty paper towels.  the spray came out bubbly and started to dissolve the grease right away.


this huge pile of paper towels is just what i used on the outside of the bbq!  i have never been particular about paper towels, but these ones definitely held up well to all the scrubbing i did – not a single one tore!


unfortunately, i waited a little too long to pay attention to the burner covers and they got a little rusty.  but look at the difference between the 2!  these cleaned up really easy.  i just worked on the grass so i wouldn’t get any grease runoff on the concrete patio.  i sprayed each of the 4 burners with the mr. clean outdoor pro spray, let it sit fir a few minutes, then just scrubbed it with our wire bbq scraper tool.  all the big chunks came off easily.  then i finished it off with the outdoor magic erasers.

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i wasn’t able to get the grill perfectly clean, but it is so much better than it was!  the warming rack above is almost back to new, and i was able to scrub layers and layers of grease off the inside of the bbq.  while i was all nasty from this job, i also emptied the grease trap at the back of the bbq.


and after getting rid of all the nasty, it was time to add the pretty!


we have seating areas and tables kind of lining our back yard, but i decided to make a fun little grouping right near the bbq.


it only makes sense – when you have a bbq, don’t the men usually hang out near the grill?  this way, the whole family can be together, and the grill master can have a place to sit between grill checks.


i love the color that these hydrangeas add wherever they are placed!


having a table near the bbq allows for space for the dinnerware to be prepped, and some snacks to be set out for the kids playing outside.  in the summer, i try to plan most of our meals to be bbq’d, completely if possible.  i hate turning on the oven or using the stove when its warm and i’d rather be outside.  thankfully, we love grilled veggies and our bbq has a gas burner on one end for any side dishes.


having a cozy spot to sit is always more inviting, for company and conversation.


i added a table next to the grill because we are always looking for a spot to set plates of meat or veggies waiting to go on the grill.


this spot is perfectly shaded in the day by the umbrella, in the late afternoon by the shadow of the loft, and lit up by the strings of bulbs going between the loft and the house at night.

i was able to do all of this in time for sean’s birthday and father’s day!  nothing like giving the gift of hard work!

ready. done. clean!


{proctor & gamble gave me these sample products to try out.  this is a sponsored post.  but i truly love these products and wouldn’t endorse them if i didn’t!  all thoughts expressed are my own.}



what i wore

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oh, this week was so much better than the last!  somehow, amidst the end-of-the-school-year craziness, i found time to get dressed each day.  and as comfy as it is to stay in cozy clothes each day, i just feel better about myself when i’m dressed.

do you struggle with getting dressed?  or wearing the same “uniform” day after day?  check out the links below to get some inspiration on new ideas.  its amazing how much better you can feel by adding a scarf or a necklace to your usual routine.  and when you’re feeling brave, take some pictures and link up!

what i wore at the pleated poppy

i wore this on a “work day” – the kids were at school, and i had a half day to work.

sweater – forever 21

jeans – target

flats – target

necklace – groopdealz

what i wore at the pleated poppy

this was a cozy at-home outfit, then good enough for running errands in the afternoon.

chambray shirt – forever 21

skirt – target

sandals – target

necklace – forever 21

bracelet – street fair

what i wore at the pleated poppy

now this is my favorite kind of outfit!  its so comfy, but i still felt great in it.  a couple details helped to elevate it a bit for me: the touches of gold and wearing my hair up.

sweater – forever 21

v-neck t-shirt – forever 21

jeans – forever 21

shoes – forever 21

what i wore at the pleated poppy

i call this “day after” hair.  the day before my hair had a ton of product in it and was curled for our history day event with school.  my hair usually is pretty limp and lifeless, so having texture to my hair makes it more fun.  doing my hair in a high bun is usually pretty easy, but with the added texture, it was extra “fluffy” and easy to put up.

what i wore at the pleated poppy

this is my go-to necklace lately.  every time i wear it silas asks if its a real chunk of gold, or just a rock painted gold.

what i wore at the pleated poppy

yes, these shoes are crazy.  but they were only like $7 and are comfy and add just a little kick to an otherwise simple outfit.

what i wore at the pleated poppy

totally boring sunday outfit, but it was one of those days where just getting dressed and out the door was an accomplishment.

top – target

jeans – forever 21

sandals – target

what i wore at the pleated poppy

polka dot cardi – forever 21

tiger t-shirt – forever 21

jeans – forever 21

shoes – nordstrom rack

do you wanna join me?  yay!  just follow the rules:

1. link to your specific blog post, not your blog’s main page. ex: not
2. please only link outfit related posts. your craft project may be adorable, or that may be a great giveaway, but this linky is for outfit related posts only – thank you!
3. please please please link back here to me so all this wiww stuff makes sense to your readers. and its just nice to do ;) grab a button from my sidebar (see the code box?).
4. check out as many links as possible! i am constantly inspired by so many outfits each week! and you will definitely find some new blogs that you’ve never stumbled upon before – so fun!