As you can see, sometimes my creativity gets out of hand and I just need to change everything. I do it with my home, and apparently I also do it with my blog.

Since it's birth about 2 years ago this blog has had a merry old time bouncing between different looks according to my mood at the time. Check out some of this logo's predecessors:

Five Kinds of happy - blog logos by Amy MacLeodFive Kinds of happy - blog logos by Amy MacLeod

Five Kinds of happy - blog logos by Amy MacLeod

Five Kinds of happy - blog logos by Amy MacLeod

Let's be honest now, they are all kinda pretty, and you can't really miss my favourite colours making their appearances.

Five Kinds of happy - blog logos by Amy MacLeod

Today I was doodling, as you do, and thought it would be fun to include these little doodles in my header image. My mind works in pictures and I think these explain things better than the long string of words after a title, right? I don't know why I didn't think of it earlier.

I'm still tweaking things and doing some more tidying etc, but I have done some tidying up of all the random widgets lying around in the side-bars. I'm hoping it's going to be a lot more clean and functional now.

Just for fun, which logo was your favourite???
I quite like all of them but the yellow heart is catching my eye right now.

Making your Home Work for You: the Bedding edition

Here's a trick I picked up at a hotel in New York that is currently making our bedding so much easier to deal with. If you have a big bed you are no doubt already aware how annoying it can be to change the duvet cover - we love having a duvet but we found that the duvet would slip around inside the duvet and bunch up at one end. Not cool when your husband is a bedding perfectionist and is wrenching the bedding around all night trying to sort it out.

Here's how it works - looks like a normal bed, right?

Making your Home work for You - bedding

Making your Home work for You - bedding

Making your Home work for You - bedding

But check this out:

Making your Home work for You - bedding

Yep, that's the convenience of a duvet inner, with a top sheet to protect it, and a super lightweight bedcover over top to protect it on the outside. You only need to wash the sheet, and don't have to wrestle with that gigantor of a duvet to try to fit it in a cover. For us, it's a win-win - plus, I love a white bed.

The yellow Dwell Studio cover you see on the end of the bed in this pic is American sizing and too big for our duvet inner, but it fits our comforter perfectly so is used just for that.

Hope the tip is useful!

Winter Interlude

I like that word - interlude.

You know when there is so much going on in your life, and yet you spend your days just waiting?

You know when you decide you want to be an interior designer and then you get a load of architectural drafting job opportunities plonked in your lap out of nowhere and you suck at decisions?

You know when you are starting a company but you can't decide on a name that covers all the amazing creative services you want to provide? And it has to be generic enough to appeal to everyone? But different enough to make you feel happy with it? And it can't be feminine because engineers are your main clients?

And you know when you suddenly decide you want to build a desk?
And you can't build?
And you don't even know what you were thinking?
But now you've ordered a giant slab of wood so you are commited?

You know?

Tongariro Chateau by Amy @ Five Kinds of Happy

We spent the weekend skiing with my humongous amazing friendly bubbly did I say HUMONGOUS family at Ruapehu. I have about 50 cousins, yo. And not really any photos to prove it, but the ch√Ęteau (above) is kind of amazing in itself.

And when I say skiing, I mean cramping my leg muscles and painfully scraping down the learner slope at 0.1 kph. And then getting MOWN DOWN by a chairlift (I could be exagerrating) and landing in a puddle of DIESEL GREASE from a snowmobile and getting it all over my new snow gear.

You know when you agree to go skiing and you can't actually ski?
And little kids are flying past you?
And they are 2 years old and better than you?

You know?

How to make your bathroom more functional (and a reveal)

Let me take you on a journey through our bathroom.

I'm going to begin with the true 'befores' back when we first moved in.

Functional bathroom redo, by Amy MacLeod
As you can see, there is no storage whatsoever, and this bath tub....?

Functional bathroom redo, by Amy MacLeod
 Mm, scrumptious.

For the record, you are looking at what I call 'sandpaper tub'. I could scrub it to death but it never looked clean as it was just so so old and the surface had eroded.

Functional bathroom redo, by Amy MacLeod

 Then, last year, we transformed it cosmetically with the goal of improving it without making any structural changes. I'll admit I was quite proud of this first 'reveal' because it really was pretty. The ruffle shower curtain and quatrefoil mirror were my faves:

Functional bathroom redo, by Amy MacLeod

Whilst it was drastically improved, we found over time that the lack of storage just got more and more annoying. See that neat little basket on the floor in the photo above? That's it. I'm pretty sure I just shovelled all my products out of the room for that photo. It is SO hard to keep a bathroom tidy when there is no storage. But we lived with it.

The real shove came when the old bath started leaking and we had bathwater dripping into the kitchen below. The old tub (made of cast iron) had to be smashed to remove it and get to the joists beneath, so we had to install a new bath, and figured we may as well update the whole thing while we're at it.
A simple update, that would be an improvement but still basic, inexpensive, and functional for future renters. 
Because we don't plan to stay here very long.
No subway tiles or brass fixtures here... sorry design bloggers!

Functional bathroom redo, by Amy MacLeod

The result is a modernised, functional little bathroom.
I did like the ruffle shower curtain a LOT, but this is sleek and practical, i.e. what we were after.

Functional bathroom redo, by Amy MacLeod

In the spirit of "making your home work for you", here are a few ways I've made this bathroom even more functional and easy to keep clean and tidy.

Functional bathroom redo, by Amy MacLeod

1. I keep a cleaning cloth on the shower caddy. So I can literally wipe down the glass screen and the basin every single day... should I so desire ;) I strongly believe in making things less of a chore so I'm more likely to actually do them.

2.  Suction Cup towel hooks. We weren't sure where to screw a hook into the wall for a hand-towel, and these suction cups just suck right onto the glass screen. They are moveable of course and we use them for the hand-towel, as well as the facecloth that is otherwise left lying limp in a puddle in the basin. 

3. Wall mounted toothbrush holder. Because that slimy run-off that you get if you keep them in a cup...? GACK.

4. The laundry basket is right there in the corner so I never need to lift piles of dirty clothes off the floor and drop socks all over the stairs on my way to the laundry, ever again. 

5. A rubbish bin next to the bath (in the back corner not shown here) for hair balls. I'm not kidding, we do not enjoy that stuff getting into the plughole! Long-haired ladies unite. Keep a bin in arm's length of the shower.

Functional bathroom redo, by Amy MacLeod

Again for dramatic affect:

Functional bathroom redo, by Amy MacLeod


Functional bathroom redo, by Amy MacLeod


And I'm quite enjoying having the old quaterfoil mirror at my disposal for future projects in other rooms.


Home {the Nest}

Don't you find that when you come back from a trip away, you have such a fresh perspective on things?

Colourful living room - white + yellow + floral by Amy MacLeod

We really miss travelling. A lot. But it's good to be home and full of fresh ideas for making this little place work for us for as long as we need it to. We're hoping to build shelves in that space you see to the right of the fireplace, and a whole lot of other little fixes to make things more efficient around here. I expect they will all make their way to this blog sometime soon, starting with our new bathroom which will be up here tomorrow.

Oh, and you can see where that floral cushion ended up :)