caffeinated kaycie

Line & Shade Arts Company

Community, DIYKaycie Vanden TopComment

Hi Friends! 

I hope that you are having a relaxing holiday weekend! 

Today on the blog, I've partnered up with my wonderful friend Leah who has just launched her new Etsy shop, Line & Shade Arts Company

Leah is an extremely talented artist! She's a Pennsylvania girl at heart and her and her hubby, Mike, live in Maryland with their fur-baby Indy! I met Leah (& Mike) through my fiancé's church and we became fast friends! When she texted me a couple months ago telling me all about her Etsy shop, it was an easy decision to do a feature on my blog! 

Line & Shade Arts Co. is a needleflash art shop! Leah does INCREDIBLE designs on embroidery hoops inspired by the traditional style of tattoo flash, except instead of a breathing canvas, the canvas is fabric! Her designs are stunning and I know that you will just love them. 

Here is the hoop that Leah sent me last week! 

How BEAUTIFUL is that?! Leah even made the coffee lighter because she knows that's how I like it. I told her to surprise me with the design and she hit the nail on the head! My hoop came wrapped up in such a pretty package that I almost didn't want to open it! The attention to detail in Leah's artwork is my favorite part. Each and every aspect of my hoop is perfect, and I can't wait to get another one! 


Leah is running a promotion in her shop specifically for my readers!!! Head on over to her shop, choose your gorgeous embroidery hoop, and enter the promo code "LOVEKAYCIE" at checkout for $5 off! 

How's that for a great deal??

I sincerely hope that you hop on over to Etsy and check out Leah's shop, Line & Shade Arts Company and use the promo code to get a stunning embroidery hoop for yourself or for a gift! Also be sure to follow Line & Shade on Instagram

What do you think of Leah's artwork? What design would you like to have on yours?

How to Create Your Own Florida Room

DecorKaycie Vanden TopComment

When I think of Florida, the first thing that I think of is the beach. Then Disney, of course, but first and foremost is the beach. I've not yet had the privilege to sit on one of the sunshine state's pristine sandy beaches and soak in the warm southern salt water, but I can't wait until the day that I have that chance. However, until then, I'm left to find ways to incorporate a little bit of Florida into my humble Massachusetts abode.

I always try to bring a little bit of sunshine into my every day life, so when Douglas Elliman Real Estate contacted me last month to be part of their Florida Room challenge, I gladly accepted! Now, living in my parents home still, I can't yet create my own actual Florida Room to show you (as much as I would love to), so I created a "mood board" if you will on how I would create my Florida Room! I'll be sharing that with you as well as some design tips to make your own Florida Room to enjoy all year round! 

When I envision my dream Florida Room, I envision a four season sun room (which is what I'll be basing this post on). Not a huge space, but just large enough to be cozy and hold the essentials... a TV, couch, and coffee table... because what would life be without coffee? Here are just a few design tips to consider when creating your Florida Room:

1. Natural Light is Essential

When you're sitting on the beach, you're immersed in natural lighting. A Florida Room must have this same effect. Choose a room that has a bunch of natural lighting during the day, this is why I think a sun room would be PERFECT. 

2. Paint the Walls Neutral

My fiancé will tell you that I am a HUGE fan of neutral walls in general, but especially if your space is going to be beach themed! Light, neutral colors reflect natural light so well and they will compliment your bright, ocean themed accessories perfectly. Lean towards a nice off white, beige, pale yellow, or pale blue when you're deciding what color to paint your Florida Room. 

3. Go with Hardwood (or Laminate)

When you're creating your Florida Room and you get to the decision of flooring, always choose hardwood or laminate over carpet. In my opinion, it just adds to the beachy feel. Find a nice flooring that resembles beach wood or that is a nice light wood color, trust me, you wont regret it! Plus, it's so much easier to clean than carpet. 

Those are my three design tips for creating your Florida Room! Now let's move onto my mood boards for how I would decorate mine! I've broken them down into three categories: Scent, Decor and Furniture! 


Now, I work at Yankee Candle. Scents have become quite an important thing in my life. If I'm stressed, I turn on Sage & Citrus. If it's a beautiful sunny day, Pink Sands it is. Rainy? Meadow Showers is what goes in my tart warmer. However, if I want to feel like I'm sitting at the beach... I always go with Sun and Sand! If you've never smelled it before, it smells like sunscreen and instantly transports you to sitting on a beach somewhere in Paradise. If I was going to have a Florida Room, Sun and Sand would be the only scent allowed! 

Almost all of these little candle accessories are from Yankee Candle except for number five. I just love the light toned colors of all of them as well as the interwoven beach theme. These are definitely what I would choose to create a "scentmosphere" (corny, I know) in my Florida Room! Filled with lots of Sun and Sand Candles, Votives, Tealights and Tarts of course. 

1. Sun and Sand Large Jar Candle

2. Dunes Collection Sea Shell Tealight Holder

3. Dunes Collection Beachcomber Illuma Lid

4. Dunes Collection White Sand Candle Holder

5. Kate Aspen "Anchors Away" Tealight Holder

6. Dunes Collection Driftwood Tart Warmer


When I think of Decor for a Florida Room, I think of beach themes naturally, but specifically anchors. Anchors have a deep meaning for me personally as it is, and I think they just look lovely in room decoration. The decor is where you want to add some of your color pops! Colorful pillows, rugs, etc are great places to add some fun, bright colors to your Florida Room! As well as some cool neutral shaded decor items such as rope. 

I just love the bright and fun pillows that I have on this board as well as the deep blue of the accent rug! The deep navy is the perfect addition of some darker shades to your bright room! Plus it'll look gorgeous contrasted against your light colored hard wood. Hint hint. Be sure to incorporate mirrors as well into your decor because they reflect natural light. In addition to items here, I would hang some pictures of beaches and islands from around the world. I would also display my sand collection that I have (sand from over 10 countries and 17 places now I believe)! 

1. Parker Anchor Throw Pillow

2. Starfish Throw Pillow

3. Sail Away Throw Pillow

4. Rope Round Mirror

5. Anchor Table Lamp

6. Threshold Wood Tray

7. Anchor Stripe Accent Rug


What is a room without furniture? For your Florida Room furniture, I suggest going with again, neutral objects that you can accent with bright pops of color! Stick to the light wood theme that we've got going and add maybe one colorful piece of statement furniture like I've got below. 

I'm sticking with the neutrals again for the furniture because everything just compliments each other so well. The couch can be put up against a wall or however you'd like to place it for snuggling, reading a good book, or just enjoying your Florida Room. Place the white and wood end tables on either side and the coffee table in front to display your scent filled items and fun decor things! The blue stand is where you can put your TV to have pictures of a beach on a slideshow or watch your favorite beach themed movie or TV show! Perfect furniture for a Florida Room! 

1. Larkspur Side Table

2. Larkspur Large Coffee Table

3. Windham Two-Door Storage Cabinet

4. Lakeside Sofa

Well folks! That's the end of how I would decorate my Florida Room and my tips for decorating yours! Thanks again to Douglas Elliman Real Estate for reaching out to me for this post! I had a blast with it! For some more design inspiration, or if you're looking to own a property in Florida, have a look at Douglas Elliman's Florida Properties Page on their website! 

What about you? How would you decorate your own Florida Room? 

When Plans Change

Encouragement, Bible StudyKaycie Vanden TopComment

Sometimes, plans change. Sometimes, things do not go the way that we think they're going to. Sometimes, our life looks opposite of how we think it's going to. 

That's kind of how my life has been lately. In case you missed my last post, Asa and I have postponed our wedding. Clearly, this has been a huge alteration to how my life was planned to go this year. I was going to get married a month from today, move to Maryland, go to Cancun, and start my life with Asa. Now, I'm not getting married, I'm going to continue to live at home, Cancun has been cancelled, and Asa and I will be continuing with a long distance relationship. Sometimes, plans change. 

What do we do when life changes like that? What do we do when our world is turned sideways and things have to be reversed, undone, and changed? I've learned a few things in the last month about when our path makes a u-turn, and I want to share them with you. 

Trust God

This has always been a pretty common topic on my blog, because it's something that I have a hard time with. However, it's the only thing that has gotten me through this last month. I have been clinging to Proverbs 3:5-6. "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight." 

I'm a little bit of a control freak in the way of I like to know what's going on and I like (need, whatever) to have a plan and to know what is happening. I don't do well with plans changing or things coming up at the last minute. Working on it. This last month, I've HAD to trust the Lord with all my heart and NOT lean on my own understanding because I don't have any understanding for what has been happening. What I DO understand though, is that God has my best interest in mind. God has my life under control, which means I don't need to. God knows EXACTLY why everything that has happened this last month happened. So even when I'm freaking out about the newness of all of this, God knows what the next step is. 

Friends, when your life takes a turn that you didn't expect, when your heart breaks, or a loved one passes away, or you lose a job, or you move to a new place... God is in control! He KNOWS what is best for you and only wants you to trust Him and give your worries and fears to Him! He's got you in His arms. Lean on Him! 

Take it Day by Day

Not every day is going to be easy... but not every day will be horrible. There have been days where all I've wanted to do is lay in bed with a box of chocolate and binge watch Netflix all day. There have also been days that I wanted to go out and enjoy the sunshine or hang out with friends or go shopping. When something drastic (or even something smaller) changes in your life, emotions will happen. I repeat, emotions WILL happen. Taking things one step at a time, one day at a time, is one of the best things you could do for yourself. Allow yourself to feel emotions, but don't let them control you. Allow yourself days to do nothing, but make sure there are days that you're out and about. Show yourself grace, things happen and that's okay. 

Do Something You Enjoy

Doing something you enjoy can be a huge stress reliever. For me, that's painting, blogging, writing, taking pictures and basically just being creative. Also singing, maybe it's just me but I always feel better after belting out a few songs into a hair brush. ;) 

For you, that thing may be going for a walk, talking to your bestie on the phone, taking a nap, painting your nails, going to the movies, doing some retail therapy, going for a drive, cooking, baking or anything else! Whatever you do to relieve stress, DO IT. Allow yourself the time to have some "me time" when you're stressed or when life takes an unexpected turn... you may just go crazy if you don't. Also, invest in some aromatherapy stress relief lotion from Bath & Body Works... I'm telling you, the stuff is amazing. Oh, and listen to worship music... that always takes the stress off too.

These are the ways that I've learned to cope with changing plans. Life happens and when it does, we need to know how to keep on living. I hope that these three things have been helpful to you. 

How do you deal with the twists and turns of life? I'd love to hear from you in the comments below! 

Hello There!

PersonalKaycie Vanden TopComment

Hi Friends! 

Wow! It has been a LONG time since I blogged. Life sort of got away from me (again) and I found that by the time I had any amount of time to blog, I was too exhausted to do it. Actually, in all honesty, even this post was supposed to go up last week.

I've learned that being consistent in blogging is hard for me, it's a challenge. I love blogging, but sometimes I truly just don't have the time. However, because I love blogging so much and because it allows me to be creative and express myself, I have decided to take it more seriously. I bought a desk off of craigslist (for $20!!!) and a pretty notebook and I've been planning and writing and taking pictures and I am so excited to get back into the swing of things. Here goes nothing! 

First of all, there is an announcement that needs to be made. You may remember that I blogged a lot about my upcoming wedding and my fiancé Asa. Due to certain circumstances, our wedding has been postponed. We are still engaged and very much in love, but we have not yet set a new wedding date. Please keep us in your prayers through this time, as it's very difficult for us both to no longer be getting married in June. This has also greatly played into my absence from the blog and most social media. 

Second of all, I got a promotion at work. I am now an assistant manager at Yankee Candle! Need candles? Come see me. 

My year looks a lot different now, and I can't say that I'm totally excited about it all, but I am still looking forward to my dad's entire side of the family visiting from Iowa in June and some other events still remaining for me this year. 

I hope that you have all had a great two months and I am so excited to be back blogging on Love, Kaycie!