Celebrating Our 500th Metamorphosis Monday!

Welcome to the 500th Metamorphosis Monday!

We just celebrated 500 Tablescape Thursdays a few weeks ago. This week we’ve hit our 500th Metamorphosis Monday! I was thinking back this evening about how Met Monday first began. Our Met Monday party began a few weeks after I shared Before and After photos in a post on January 2, 2009 of a change I had made in my dining room. (See that post here: Dining Room Makeover.)

In that post I shared picture molding I had recently added in my dining room. I had also painted white beneath the chair rail. It was a dramatic change and greatly improved the appearance of the room. That post received so many comments, I realized a Before and After was something we all really enjoyed. Metamorphosis Monday got underway for the first time on Monday, January 19th. What a great 500 weeks it has been!

Add picture molding to Dining Room


Between Naps On The Porch actually hit a huge milestone earlier this month, as well. On August 18, BNOTP turned 10 years old! Wow, the time has flown by so quickly! Thank you for being here each day because YOU are what makes blogging so much fun!


Celebrating 500 Weeks of Metamorphosis Monday

At the end of last’s week Met Monday post, I suggested we share links back to 5-10 of our favorite or most challenging Before and Afters to celebrate this 500th Met Monday party. I honestly had a hard time narrowing it down to just 10 so I think I went over that number just a little.

I can’t celebrate our 500th Metamorphosis Monday without mentioning the “Before and After” that in many ways is responsible for the existence of the Between Naps On The Porch blog: the addition of a screened porch to the back of my home. When I shared a few photos of my newly added porch on HGTV’s “Rate My Space” website back in 2008, a few dearhearts there encouraged me to start a blog.

Adding a screened porch to my home was definitely one of the biggest Before and Afters I’ve ever undertaken. The old deck on my home was poorly designed and not in the greatest shape.


It was removed…


…and two decks and a screened-in porch were added in its place.


Afterward, it felt as if they had always been there.

Screened Porch, Decks with Pergola


Read more about this metamorphosis here: Screened Porch Addition and here: How Much Does It Cost to Build a Screened Porch.


I have always loved porches. This photo showing the front porch of the home at Gainesway Farm in Kentucky had been tucked away in my “someday” file for a long time. When I replaced the back deck with a screened porch and two smaller decks, I decided to go ahead and add on a front porch, too. My contractor did his best to duplicate the look of this porch for me.

Photo from Southern Homes Magazine


I don’t have a Before photo from a distance, but I did think to take this photo after the old stoop had been removed. Previously there was just a brick stoop with no porch, so there wasn’t any protection overhead for friends or family during a visit when it was raining.




To read more about the construction of the front porch, check out this post: How Much Does It Cost To Build a Front Porch.


This next metamorphosis got underway on June 28, 2013. My home was slowly being overtaken by tall shrubs and trees. I didn’t realize how much until I had some of those removed. Landscaping the front yard wasn’t an overnight Before and After. It took a couple of years to complete but was definitely worth it in the end.


Here’s how the house looks today.


I’m going to have the Carissa Holly bushes drastically cut back next spring. I had them trimmed a year or so ago and they weren’t cut back as much as I had requested.

Anyone know the best time to drastically cut a Carissa Holly back? I’d like for them to be about half the size they are now. I know they’ll be ugly for a while, but they are just way too big at this point. I may end up having to remove them entirely.

Christmas Decoration, How to Hang Wreaths on Windows


Too many changes took place in this front landscape to explain them all in this post. Trees and shrubs were removed, trees/shrubs were planted, the yard was sodded with Zeon Zoysia, birdhouses/accent pieces were added–so much was done.

If you would like to read some of the posts from that period, check out this page: Garden. Scroll down that page and you’ll see links to all the posts that chronicled this dramatic landscaping/gardening metamorphosis.

Christmas House with Wreaths in Snow

Photo taken by my neighbor, Michelle.


If you’ve been reading BNOTP since the early years, you’ll remember when I sadly dismantled my son’s old bedroom and turned it into a home office. He was out of college by the time I did this, but it was still so hard to do.

I did all the work myself, including taking apart the beds and hauling all the furniture down to the garage where it’s been in storage ever since. My son and dil are thinking they will want to use it with their sons, so I’ve been saving it all this time just in case they do need it.

Child's Bedroom Renovation to a Home Office


To read more about this Before and After, check out this post: Designing and Creating a Home Office: The Journey.

Lighting for the home office


You’ll find all the posts I’ve shared about this room here: Home Office.


I spend a lot of time here and do enjoy this space. There’s really nothing I would change or do differently regarding this makeover. It took a while to complete as I searched for just the pieces I had in mind. Sometimes it’s better to go slowly because we may change our minds a few times during the process of making over a room.


One of the trickiest Before and Afters I have ever shared on the blog was this crazy Expedit installation. I so badly wanted an Expedit inside the office closet for storage, but the Expedit was within 3/4 inch of being the same width as the closet itself!

IKEA Expedit Closet Storage Organization


There was no way to build the Expedit outside the closet and bring it in through the doorway to rotate it into place. After a lot of thought, I figured out a way to build it in place, no small feat since Expedits are normally built laying down so the screws underneath the bottom can be tightened into place. I figured out a way to get it done and shared those details in a post.

You can see just how little space was left over at either end of the Expedit in the next two photos.


In addition to building it in place, I had to cut away a small amount of the baseboard molding just to get it to fit., so it ended up with a “built-in” look.


I love it and use it every day. It offers the perfect storage for everything I need here in the office on a daily basis. Read how I managed to get it built inside this tiny space here: IKEA Expedit Hack: How I Made It Work.


One of the first woodworking/craft projects I ever completed and shared was an attempt to make a similar wood flag to this one I had seen at the Pottery Barn website. I loved how it looked, but needed a slightly smaller version for the porch.


This little pile of sticks…


…slowly began to look more and more like a flag.


I always enjoy putting this flag out for patriotic holidays. You’ll find the easy tutorial for making it here: Make a Wood Flag for Celebrating Patriotic Holidays.

Pottery Barn Knock-off: Make a Wood Flag for Patriotic Holidays


Have you ever wanted something really badly, but you just couldn’t justify the cost? That was the situation I found myself in with this adorable Pottery Barn potting table. If I’m remembering correctly, it was priced at well over $1,000.


I loved that it could be used as an outdoor server for parties, too.


With zero experience building anything, I decided to give it a try. What did I have to lose? I didn’t have any plans, just figured it out as I went. When I had a question about how to do something, I’d watch YouTube videos online.

I started with a small pile of cedar wood. I had the four legs cut to the size I thought I’d need, then cut everything else down to size as I built the table.

Cedar Wood for Potting Table


Here’s how it looked nearing completion.


And here’s the finished product.


This potting table is still downstairs in my basement. I was going to use it upstairs on the deck, but there was never a good time to have someone move it up onto the deck. If I ever landscape my backyard the way I would like, I’ll pull it out underneath the screened porch for potting. I’ve used it a few times in the partially finished basement. I have another potting bench I use a lot upstairs in my garage when working in the front yard and potting up plants for the decks.

I love how it turned out. It was a challenge and took me quite a while to build since I had to learn how to use a circular saw and a jigsaw first.

If you would like to build this potting table yourself, you’ll find all the info you need in these two posts: Build a Potting Table AND Dimensions/Cut List for Potting Table.


Itching to build something else once I finished the table, I turned my sights on this adorable cubby organizer I had always admired on the Pottery Barn website.

Mud Room Cubby Organizer


Once completed, I thought I’d place mine in my home office, but I ended up using it in my little makeshift workshop here in the basement.


Find the tutorial to build this cubby organizer here: Cubby Organizer.


This next “Before and After” project wasn’t a hard one, but I’m including it in this 500th Met Monday celebration post because it was time intensive. I came across these pretty Pottery Barn shell chargers on eBay a few years back. I had hoped to bid on them but the bidding quickly escalated to over $200 for 6 chargers!


I decided to make my own shell chargers using shells collected on Captiva Island back in 1983. I had a lot of shells so those I had collected in Captiva made up the majority of the chargers. I filled in any gaps with shells from Marshalls and some tiny one I found online. They took a long time to make but were so worth it in the end. I’ve really enjoyed using these during the summer months.


Still having a lot of shells left over and being a glutton for punishment, I made 6 more chargers later, adding in a few pieces of blue “sea glass” found in Marshalls. This is a fun project to do while watching a movie and/or listening to a book on Audible.


In the end, I had some sore fingertips from pushing all those tiny sharp shells into place, but have so enjoyed using these the last few summers. You’ll find instructions for making these shells chargers here: Shell Chargers and here: Shell Chargers with Sea Glass.


This next project wasn’t the fanciest in the world, but I was happy with how it turned out because it cost very little too complete and made such an improvement in my day-to-day life. I needed a better way to store my winter shoes and handbags. I didn’t take a “before” photo (wish I had now) but all my shoes were just lined up all along the floor of the closet, taking up all the “walking-around” space inside the closet. It was such a bad use of space.

I purchased some shelving I found online at Target and redesigned how the shelving worked. It involved turning the shelving upside down and drilling new holes and completely reconfiguring the shelves to accommodate my tall boots and other shoes.

Boot and Shoe Storage


This is still working so well for my needs. Recently, I donated a few pairs of shoes I rarely wore, so this space continues to work beautifullly for my winter wardrobe.

Winter Clothes and Boot Storage


I also added a small inexpensive bench to this closet and it gets used daily during the winter months as I put on my shoes/boots.

Small Bench for a Small Closet


Since this closet is directly off the master bath, this little bench comes in handy even during the summer months as I get dressed. Read more about this Before and After here: Closet Makeover. See how the bench functions for storage here: Bench Addition.

Storage Bench for Small Closet for Putting on Boots


One of the more labor-intensive projects I’ve taken on over the years was finally adding storage cabinets to the garage. It was made especially complicated because the shelving kept arriving with many broken pieces. Aargh! I finally had to resort to having it delivered to a nearby store where I picked it up and brought it home in my SUV.


In the past when I envisioned adding shelving to the garage, it was for storing gardening supplies. Using it to store the dishware I’ve collected over the past 40 years has been a lot more fun! I really enjoy having everything I need for setting a table for friends, family or for Tablescape Thursday, all in one place. Read more about this Before and After here: Tablscaping Storage for Dishware, Flatware, Napkin Rings, Napkins and Glassware.

Attractive Cabinet Storage for Garage, Home, Basement


The two questions I always get about this space are: Do the dishes stay clean AND doesn’t it get too hot/cold in the garage?

The dishes do stay clean, probably because the doors protect them. I also blow out my garage every couple of weeks, so it never gets really dirty.

Regarding temperature, this space never gets extremely cold or extremely hot because it is surrounded by heated/cooled spaces below, above, on the left and at the front, leaving only two “exposed” sides. This garage is always a pretty moderate temperature, even during the hottest and coldest times of the year. If your garage isn’t surrounded by heated/cooled spaces on so many sides, this solution may not work for your storage.

Also, keep in mind, dishes are very hardy and most are designed to get washed in high temps in the dishwasher. I wouldn’t store antique dinnerware here, but even it would probably be fine since the temps never get to the extreme.

Cabinet Storage Ideas for Dishware, Glassware, Flatware and Napkins


Since we will soon be entering into the fall months, I’ll end this post Metamorphosis Monday celebration post with one final project that was challenging but so much fun to make: a Hot Cocoa sign for a little Hot Chocolate station I set up outside on the porch.


I had seen this sign on another blog but unfortunately, it was never available in my local Marshalls each time I checked. After searching for it for a couple of years, I realized I would need to make my own.

I love putting it out here on the porch each year! If you would like to make your own Hot Cocoa sign for your winter Hot Chocolate bar, you’ll find the tutorial for making this sign here: Hot Cocoa Sign.

You’ll find more details about the Cocoa station itself in this post: Create a Hot Cocoa Bar for Winter Entertaining.

See the little moose?


He’s a “Chocolate Moose” and he smells just like chocolate! Is that not a hoot?! Embroidered on the bottom of his fuzzy little foot are the words, Chocolate Moose. You know I’m never going to grow up, right? 😉


Thank you so, so much for being here for so many Metamorphosis Mondays! YOU are the very best part of my blogging journey and I’m grateful for you and your encouraging words each and every day! ♥♥♥ 

Looking forward to another 500 weeks of fabulous Before and Afters!


Pssst: I post almost daily to Instagram. Follow Between Naps on the Porch on Instagram here: Between Naps On The Porch.

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Metamorphosis Monday

Metamorphosis Monday is a party that’s all about Before and Afters. If you are participating in Met Monday, please link up using the “permalink” to your MM post and not your general blog address. To get your permalink, click on your post name, then just copy and paste the address that shows up in the address bar at the top of your blog, into the “url” box for InLinkz.

In order to link up, you’ll need to include a link in your MM post back to the party so the other participants will have an opportunity to receive visits from your wonderful blog readers.

Please observe these few rules:

Please link up Before and After posts that are home, gardening, decorating, crafting, painting, sewing, cooking, fashion or DIY related.

Be sure to include a link back to the party in your post, so your readers will be able to find and visit the other bloggers who are participating.

Do not link up to the party if you’re only doing so to promote or sell a product.

To those who are linking up: If you notice a shop or online store linking up to sell products (yes, unfortunately, that does happen) please let me know so I can remove their link and block them from participating in future parties. No one wants to click a link expecting a Before and After, only to find a spam link to an online business/store.

*If a post is sponsored or a product was provided at no charge, it will be stated in post. Some links may be affiliate links and as an Amazon Associate, I may earn from qualifying purchases. *

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  1. Susan, Your blog has always been so inspirational and MM and TT were the first blog parties I joined when I started blogging 8 years ago. I’ve always admired your screened porch and front porch additions and I have you to thank for turning me onto the Luciana outdoor bench at Grandin Road. Love your dinnerware storage, cute potting bench and cocoa station too! Wishing you 500 more MM’s. ♥

    • Thanks so much, Mary! I was thinking about you recently when I was cleaning mine off after a big rain storm. Is it holding up well in your garden? You have it near the potting shed, right? I love how it looks there and love the color you chose!

  2. Hi Susan, The linky is not showing up…I’m sure you’ve had dozens of comments already 🙂

  3. Congrats on 500 MM’s and 10 years of BNOTP !! I have enjoyed following your blog since I first learned what a blog was. You were the reason I wanted to start my own blog – so I could link to TT’s! Thank you for hosting both of these parties all these years!

    • Thanks, Lori! Awww, I’m so glad you started one so you can join in TT. I know you have met some wonderful, wonderful folks. The ladies (and occasionally gents) who join in each week for TT are so special, just the best!

  4. Susan, you have been such an inspiration to me. Way before I started blogging, I was following and pinning your posts. I love your screened porch and your storage for dishware is my dream. Happy 10th anniversary and 500 MM, wishing you many more!

  5. Robyn Gouge says

    Susan, you are amazing!! You just enthrall me with all the projects you take on yourself and always do a magnificent job! Your get it done attitude and determination to make it work are inspiring. Thanks so much for all the Metamorphosis Mondays. I always enjoy them so much and can’t wait to see what you are going to do next.

    • Thanks so much, Robyn! Some of those projects were a bit intimidating. lol But I’m stubborn…being stubborn comes in handy once in a while. 😉

  6. I can’t believe I’ve “known” you for this long! I remember all of these posts and when I saw the dates that you completed these projects, well, I couldn’t believe how fast time is flying. You are super talented and I admire you and your blog so much! You are the highlight of the day.

    AND I have serious porch envy! =)

    Thank you for everything you do to make this such an interesting blog.

    Your friend,
    Mary from Virginia

    • I know, amazing how fast the years are going by! Just a little scary! That’s why we have to live each to its fullest and not miss a minute, right Mary?
      Talk about talented…your floral creations I’m seeing on Instagram are gorgeous!
      Thanks for being such a great friend, even though we’ve never had the opportunity to meet in real life. XXX

  7. Elizabeth Roderick says

    Congratulations ! Thank you for all the beautiful post and inspiration.

  8. Congratulations!! Two 500th anniversaries the same year! Thank you for all the inspiration you’ve freely given and your thoughtfulness in providing lovely parties week in and week out. I would never have started blogging if my husband hadn’t stumbled on BNOTP one day and said I might like it!

    • I know, this has been a busy last few weeks celebrating two 500 anniversaries and the 10 anniversary of the blog! I tried to keep this post “factual” because it wouldn’t take much for me to get all sentimental…and crying doesn’t make for great blog posts. lol I can’t believe it’s been 10 years!
      Please tell your hubby how much I appreciate him recommending BNOTP to you, Sandra! XX

  9. Susan, congrats on 500 Met Monday’s. It’s hard to believe it’s already been so many! We’ve seen you make some great changes over the years.

    I laughed about the comment regarding your little chocolate moose – and how you’re never going to grow up. I remember when I hit fifty I thought, okay, I’m definitely grown up now, there’s no denying it. 😀

    Say, is that an ovation guitar in big Court’s room? I didn’t know he played. Does he still?

    Btw, I love how your black benches mirror the benches on the inspiration photo for the front porch. 😉

    Here’s to five THOUSAND more met Mondays. 😀

    • Thanks so much, Pam!
      I think I’m going the other way, getting younger at heart with less cares the older I get. 🙂

      I think the guitar was a Yamaha…is that a brand for guitars? Chip wanted to learn to play and he took lessons for a while, but lost interest. He still has the guitar, though. Who knows, maybe one of his sons will have an interest in learning. It will be considered “vintage” by then. lol

      Okay, I did the math and I’ll need to live 96 more years to share 5000 more Met Mondays. Let’s do it! 🙂

      • Lol, I like the ‘going the outer way,’ idea. Count me in. 🙂 And yes, Yamaha is a brand of guitar. I love that the little guys may some day sleep in their daddy’s bed and play his guitar.

        96 more years?!! Haha. I can’t believe you did the math. I’m in. 😉

  10. Happy, Happy Birthday BNOTP! And here’s hoping for many more! Wish we could throw a party.

  11. Leslie Alexander says

    Susan, congratulations on 500 Met Mondays! I think my very favorite makeover was the conversion of your son’s room to your office. That took a LOT of determination! Just getting that furniture downstairs took some planning and engineering – I know – my boys had the same furniture! I love your blog and your “CAN DO!” attitude – whether it be transforming an aspect of your home, travel, or finding a milk you can drink. Please keep up your amazing work.

    • Thanks, Leslie! Appreciate that so much. I’m not sure I would have the nerve to try it again today, although knowing how hardheaded I can be, I probably would. lol As you know, that is some seriously heavy furniture! Hoping it will work for my grandsons, but not sure if it will fit in their room as bunk beds, which is what my oldest grandson wants.

  12. Kathy Gray says

    Wow Susan-500 Metamorphiseses or Metamorphi? Either way you are an inspiration. I have looked at your office/hobby room and keep that as my idea board. I’m still working on my personal version. Keep up the good work and style and insight and fun. I admire your efforts.

  13. YOU’VE COME A LONG WAY, BABY!!! It’s been a true pleasure enjoying you metamorphosis…a stunning butterfly at that!!! franki

  14. Susan, I have followed you since I started blogging almost 10 years ago. Your blog caught my eye. Always a treat to visit and see what you have going on,

    • Thanks, Deanna! Congrats to you on your upcoming blog anniversary! I still love it as much as the day I started and I bet you could say the same! 🙂

  15. Your creativity and abilities are quite wonderful!!!! Your home is wonderful.

  16. Congratulations on the milestone! A link from Pinterest brought me here, I can’t wait to explore!

  17. I just love your blog! Susan, you are an amazingly talented woman! Keep all the great info coming!

  18. donna zoltanski says

    You are an inspiration! I started following your blog as we built a screened in porch complete with a swing like yours. (copycat). We enjoy so many of the same things from dishes, to plants, golden retrievers, decor to name a few. Thanks for brightening my days. I do enjoy your blog so much. Congrats – you work hard to bring us all these delightful ideas.

  19. I have never commented before but have followed and enjoyed your
    blog for at least 2 years or more…you more than deserve to celebrate
    all that you have accomplished! Your posts are always inspiring,
    informative and enlightening. Through your BNOTP my world has
    become richer and wider…just wanted to let you know…you make
    a difference and I can only imagine how much time and energy it
    takes to consistently send blogs and share your days and yourself with us
    each day! I think I first found you on Pinterest and I’m so glad I did!

    • Thanks so much, Mary Ann, appreciate those sweet words so much! It’s readers like you who make blogging so much fun and such a blessing for me!

  20. Well, I’m not sure that I was here for your first Metamorphosis post but I’ve been blogging since September 1, 2008, and you started a month earlier. I don’t think I found you right away but once I did, I was hooked. I’ve been following you for at least 9 years. Anyway, it was great to look back at some of these projects. I pinned some of them to try myself, like the potting bench. So adorable but I had forgotten that you made that! You are an organizational genius and I have learned so much from you over the years.
    As far as drastically cutting back your carissa holly, it should be done in late winter probably mid-to-late February so that it will still be protected by the leaves during the harshest and longest part of winter. Really, really enjoyed this post!

    • Awww, thanks Vicki! I was thinking the other day that one of my favorite things in the world is organing stuff. Sick, I know! 🙂 It just feels so good to be able to put your hands on something right when you need it.
      Thanks for that info about the Carissa hollies. I was hoping that was the correct time…once they’ve made it through the winter but before the spring growth hits. I’ll have to time that just right.

  21. So many projects! I would place the bedroom-to-office transformation at the top; it’s the BNOTP HQ–the heart and soul. Then the garage storage as it’s such a great concept and execution. Then the chocolate moose, because hey, chocolate moose.
    Congratulations Susan!

  22. Congratulation Susan. You sure got it going’ on. Glad you are in my world. Mondays and Thursdays are date dates with you.

  23. Snowflake281 says

    500 Metamorphosis Mondays? Wow! That is certainly something to be very proud of. As a fairly new follower of your blog I must say that I had no idea how handy you were especially when it comes to using power tools. I am so impressed at how resourceful you are. All your featured Before & Afters turned out fantastic. I congratulate you on this milestone blog post and wish you continued success in all your future projects.

    • Thanks! Yeah, power tools still scare me, especially the saws. I like keeping all my fingers! 🙂
      So glad you are here reading, Snowflake! XXX

  24. Congratulations. Thank you for sharing so many lovely, diy, garden, decor etc ideas. When I first discovered blog in 2013, yours was one of the first I followed

  25. I was remembering back to when I first discovered your Blog. It was this time of year, when I start thinking about decorating for the Holidays. My Sister and I wanted to set a really pretty table for Thanksgiving, inspired by Sandra Lee’s TV show. So, I “googled” Thanksgiving Tablescapes in 2012 and found your beautiful tables! We have been hooked ever since! I truly have been inspired by your Blog and my Sister and I now go Antiquing, plan tablescapes, swap/loan dishes, just generally have a great time together. We were close before, but now we are closer and we have you to thank for that! Thank you for sharing your ideas, creativity and life in general you have touched more people than you know.

    • Aww, your comment really touched my heart, Charlotte. Thank you so much for taking time to share that, it means so much and truly makes my day! Sisters are so special, I lost mine a few years ago and still think about her all the time. XXX

  26. Happy 500th!! Your blog was the very first blog i ever saw and I was hooked after that!! Thank you!!
    Thanks for hosting!!

  27. Congratulations, Susan! Your blog was one of the first most influential blogs to my taking the plunge when I began in 2013. I appreciate your support for other bloggers joining in your conversation, whether it’s sharing the platform through your link parties or with features. Here’s to 500 more!
    These are all great projects! (and I have boxwoods that have outgrown their useful life same as your holly hedge. I just know one thing will lead to another when we have them removed, and am resisting the dominoes falling; i.e., doing nothing but continuing trimming).

    • Thanks so much, Rita! It has been so wonderful getting to know you better, my conspirator in handbags! 🙂
      Oh, I so hear you on that. I do not want to have all those Carrissa hollies removed, if I can avoid it. I chose those for that area since they are slow growing…and they have been, but they’ve been there for many, many years. Hopefully, they will respond well to a major cut back.
      Thanks again for being such a great friend all these years! XXX

  28. Love all your ideas and am SO impressed with your garage storage. Since we downsized and now have a storage cage in the underground garage of our building I can’t borrow the idea….but I have a huge closet in the guest room ( almost the size of a small room) so I am going to look for something similar for that. And…yes, one little change can make a huge difference. We picked everything for our new kitchen and I love it all…but I am short and the under cabinet lighting was right in my line of sight when I sat at the counter, looked over from the dining area, etc. Luckily the kitchen people came back and install light rain molding…like your ideas for molding it was a great addition – makes the already beautiful cabinets look finished. Now I just need to find something that will be a good outdoor hook that will stick to stucco – can’t nail or drill into it. Then I can complete the look for our screen patio….which I still call a screen porch since we had screen porches in our last two homes. Love them…that is what drew me to your blog. Thanks for all your great ideas !!!

    • Ann, that was so smart to do! I have a lamp in my living room that does that, the light hits me right in the eye when I sit to read, so I know how annoying that can be. Glad you found a great solution!
      Umm, you may want to google for ways to hang things on stucco. I bet someone has come up with a solution. My son and dil have an older home and run into that same issue with their walls, forgot what they are called, but you can’t hang things on them very easily at all.

  29. Your’s was the first blog I ever followed. I like that you have it so organized; if I can’t read it right away, I get the blog emailed to me; sometimes I read several weeks at one time. I’m 63 years old, married to the same man for 40 years. He’s the cook; I load a mean dishwasher. I do have an ASID certificate from NY School of Interior Design. In June I am not working as the real estate manager which I did for over 30 years. I am “cleaning this old house”. Next I intend to start some creative projects. I want to refinish furniture and more. I look at your blog for information and inspiration. I have a passion for roses and have 1000s of photos of them. We moved a year ago and I planted 10 – 12 rose bushes. I’m just hoping they all thrive; they’re settling now but I love to watch them bloom and see the whole cycle of a roses life. Kinda like everyone’s life – start out little and fragile, they open & I love every stage except when they’ve finished their cycle and they fall from the bush. I need to learn to post on Instagram. That’s all part of my plans for my retirement. I don’t comment much so this was sort of a catch up for me and you, Susan. Thanks for being so thorough, fun and informational about things I am interested in and some you introduced me to. I hope you keep blogging and I will keep reading. Thank you, Susan.

    • Thanks so much, Ann! I know a lot of blogs have gone with a different format these days, but I have purposely kept the design/format on the home page the same for the very reason you mentioned. I think it’s easier for those who stop by to see what they last read and what’s new on the blog. I’m so happy to hear you think so, too.
      How wonderful about your rose garden! I would love to have a rose garden! I can hear your passion for it, so I know it will a huge success! An aunt I was close to growing up had a wonderful rose garden and I love seeing all her roses. I wish she had lived longer or I had been born earlier because I could have learned so much from her about growing roses. She also had gorgeous azaleas and hydrangeas in her garden. Thanks for reminding me of that sweet memory. XXX

  30. Congratulations, Susan on a huge milestone of 500 MM.

  31. Cyndi Raines says

    Such dedication. Thank you for bringing so much joy to so many of us. You and BNOTP are a part of our everyday life. I feel like my life has been enriched by “meeting you” and enjoy our friendship although we have never met in person. I speak of you so often now regarding something you have shared or an awesome tip, that my husband and my sisters know when I say “Susan” I mean you! Lol Congratulations on all your hard work and reaching 500 MM! You go girl!

  32. Congratulations, Susan, on 500 MM, as well as the well-deserved accolades from so many grateful followers, including myself. Your blog has provided enjoyment, laughter, information, encouragement, and inspiration for all of us to share our love of tablescaping with others who understand the love of just the right place setting set with just the right accent pieces; as well as the thought that one can start traveling at any time of their life and make memories ( you’ve convinced me, and my Hubby and I leave for a tour of Spain and Portugal in April!) There are many more aspects of your blog that have made it required viewing for many, many followers. But, I don’t think I’m alone in counting you as one of my friends who I can count on for a bright start to my day, no matter what challenges may be ahead. Many thanks. Rosie @ The Magic Hutch

    • Thanks so much, Rosie! Oh, wow! Your trip sounds amazing! I would love to see Spain and Portugal one day. Such a great choice you made! Please let me know how you liked it when you return, can’t wait to hear! Are you guys going alone or taking a tour?
      Thank you so much for those kind words, appreciate those so, so much! ♥

  33. Congrats on the 500th Met Mondays! I have so enjoyed this link party and have enjoyed reading your beautiful blog for close to 10 years! I always love seeing the metamorphosis of your porches. Wonderful porches no matter the size truly add so much charm to a home….your’s is truly iconic! Love the front porch in all seasons…but I think I my favorite is in the holiday/winter season….Again, congrats Susan….looking forward to another 500!

    • Thanks so much, Shirley! It has been such a fun 10 years and I’ve so appreciated your friendship! ♥ Looking forward to another 500 MMs!

  34. Bobbi Duncan says

    Susan, big congrats on all your achievements over the last 10+ years! You’ve worked hard to make your blog tops in the blogging world. I love all the diversity, creativity, beauty, and helpful information you always bring to your readers….and being the sweetheart you are is the cherry on top. LOVE BNOTP!!!!!!

  35. You tablescapes have inspired me so often. I actually made the seashell chargers after reading your tutorial. I admire your creativity and your ability to start AND finish so many projects. Do you ever have “time to take a nap” on your porch between projects? Congratulations on having the BEST blog on the Internet.

    • Thanks so much, Nancy! Appreciate your sweet words so much!
      That’s awesome that you made the chargers! It’s a fun project once you get into it, so impressed you made them! Way to go! Well, I think napping is wishful thinking on my part. Ha! 🙂

  36. Susan, your blog has been a joy; a source of inspiration, fun, and a pick-me-up on punky days. Thanks so much for all your hard work over the years, not only on your beautiful projects but taking all the photos to share with us! Wishing you, and us your readers, many more years of BTNOP. Congratulations!!

    P.S. On trimming Carissa holly: We have Chinese holly along a fence line which has grown to about 8 ft. tall. We keep it high for privacy. I trim them in mid summer (electric hedge trimmer and a step ladder, :-{ ) so the shrubs have a chance to get some regrowth before the cooler temps set in. The new growth keeps them healthy and protected through the winter. You could probably do them now if they get some sun, but otherwise I would wait until late next spring.

    • Thanks so much, Marlene! Thanks for that info on the trimming. I think I will wait until later winter/early spring since the cold will be coming in October/November and I’m just not sure how much growth they would have by then. I have a feeling they will be in “shock” for a while since it will be a drastic trimming. They are going to look pretty ugly for a while, I think.

  37. Warm congratulations on all those metamorphoses! Your work is perfection and I must say your shell chargers are much, much nicer than the Pottery Barn ones.

  38. Susan, congratulations on your 500th MM! I have enjoyed every one I have seen. I have been following you since around the time of Max’s death. I lost my Bandit cat around that time and we messaged each other over this. Your blog is absolutely my favorite! I love to cook and set pretty tables. I have benefited from several of your metamorphoses in my own home. I bought several of the items you recommended after your Italy trip and have taken them to Italy and Ireland and soon to Germany. I’m looking forward to the next 500 Monday Metamorphoses!

    • Thanks so much, Martha! That was a sad time for the both of us, appreciate your friendship during that time! Do not get sick in Germany like I did! lol When will you be leaving for that trip? I feel like I need to go back again one day since I spent the majority of the trip in bed on the ship.

      • Susan, our church group is leaving for Oberammergau next May to catch the Passion Play, which is only presented every 10 years. It won’t happen again till 2028. I am super excited and hope I won’t catch anything or break another bone between now and then!

  39. I found your blog several years ago from a post about your sweet kitty, and have enjoyed following your adventures and projects. (Plus I love your traditional style!) You have accomplished so much, and have kindly shared with us. Hope you have many, many more adventures and MMs.

  40. Congratulations Susan and applause, applause as IMO you certainly deserve a standing ovation for being the talented and creative woman you are. Looking forward to another 500 MMs . -Brenda-

  41. Another fun post! Thank you for your help, it’s up once again! Thanks for hosting MMs and TTs! My favorite things!


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