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color adventures: oh joy wears purple!

color adventures: oh joy wears purple! / via oh joy!

For our last post of November, I'm bringing you FOUR purple outfits for this month's Color Adventures! You're probably thinking, "I thought you hated purple, Joy?!" I know, I did...But now I LOVE IT. So here are four outfits in a color I never thought I'd wear...

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my favorite frozen hot chocolate recipe...

my favorite frozen hot chocolate recipe... / via oh joy!

If you're like me and adore chocolate-covered strawberries, you're going to LOVE this frozen strawberry hot chocolate! It's inspired by one of my favorite indulgent treats, is super decadent, and is perfect for all of your holiday parties. So, in partnership with KitchenAid, I've used the new K400 Blender to create a deliciously simple recipe that makes a rich frozen hot chocolate and blends in sweet strawberries for a fruity twist.

The KitchenAid® K400 Blender is ideal for recipes like this because it has an "Icy Drink" pre-set, so you can get the texture just right. You can also control the taste and texture for your exact recipe with the 5-speed dial. It's super quick (blending even the toughest ingredients!), which is extra handy when party prepping.

I love making things that put a twist on classic recipes to make it a bit unexpected and incorporate a dash of whimsy, so these are garnished in true Oh Joy! fashion. Check it out...

my favorite frozen hot chocolate recipe... / via oh joy!

You'll need...
- 2 cups strawberries (hulled, whole)
- 1-1/2 cups chocolate milk (we used pea milk to make it dairy-free)
- 3/4 cups cocoa powder (we used unsweetened bc the chocolate milk adds sugar)
- 4 cups ice

For the toppings..
- whipped cream
- freeze-dried strawberries, crumbled
- chocolate shavings
- sprinkles
- shredded coconut

my favorite frozen hot chocolate recipe... / via oh joy!

my favorite frozen hot chocolate recipe... / via oh joy!

Here's how...
1. In the KitchenAid® K400 Blender, add ice, chocolate milk, hot cocoa powder, and strawberries.
2. Blend until fully mixed.
3. Pour into glasses and top with a dollop of whipped cream. Then sprinkle on any other toppings you'd like!

my favorite frozen hot chocolate recipe... / via oh joy!

my favorite frozen hot chocolate recipe... / via oh joy!

Whenever I whip up something special for a party (or even just for myself!), I like to add something unexpected. Sprinkles are usually a great way to do this because almost anything tastes even sweeter with some sprinkles on top. Plus, sprinkles add a fun shimmer for a festive statement, especially for the holidays! So, for this drink, we piled on the pretty (and delicious) toppings!

my favorite frozen hot chocolate recipe... / via oh joy!

my favorite frozen hot chocolate recipe... / via oh joy!

Have a glass (or two) with friends for a holiday party...it's perfect for both casual and more fancy gatherings! Enjoy!

{Photos by Lily Glass, Concept/Production/Styling by Julia Wester, Production Assistance by Jess Hong. Written by Joy Cho and Traci Michael.}

a colorful nesting table diy...

a colorful nesting table diy... / via oh joy!

We're all about space-saving tricks for the home, especially when it comes to kid stuff! While it's nice to have extra tables and storage on hand, it's even nicer when you're able to tuck them away as needed or to consolidate multiple items into one. So today, we're showing you how to maximize nesting tables!

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oh joy builds a house update: floors!

oh joy builds a house update: floors!

For the last 9 years, I've lived in an apartment with wall-to-wall carpet. I grew up with carpet in my parent's house so there's a certain coziness to it that reminds me of childhood. And, since we don't wear shoes in our house, carpet actually feels pretty great underfoot. BUT, carpet does feel a bit dated to me, and it's so much harder to keep clean with kids and pets and life! I can't tell you how many times a week we bust out our mini carpet cleaning machine to try and get some sort of stain out.

oh joy builds a house update: floors!

So when we had the chance to start fresh for flooring for our house, hardwood floors were a must. I researched a lot of brands and price points, and going with full-on true hardwood floors was just too costly on top of all of our other costs to build this house. So we decided to go with engineered hardwood flooring meaning that it's constructed of layers of both hardwood and plywood instead of just hardwood the whole way through. We chose Mohawk's Coastal Allure collection from Wayfair which features longer, wider planks in light, neutral tones so that the wood doesn't darken the room and makes it feels bright and open. This hardwood was also engineered to resist dirt and dents, hide scratches, and look oil-finished without all the costly maintenance. While we are waiting till next year to give you all the full final reveals, here are some more peeks showing you the wooden floors and details going in....

oh joy builds a house update: floors!

oh joy builds a house update: floors!

In our living room, we have a special hardwood floor detail...on the ceiling! This room has high ceilings and is meant to be the center for our family, so our team at Project M+ suggested adding wood to the ceiling to add a cozy factor to this modern home. This was one of the first areas that the wood flooring was installed and it really started to make the house come together. We chose a slightly lighter shade of the same Mohawk flooring for the ceiling (called "white" but is just a tad lighter shade of the floor color).

oh joy builds a house update: floors!

We have these hardwood floors throughout the entire house except in areas where the floors are likely to get wet (kitchen and all bathrooms).

oh joy builds a house update: floors!

oh joy builds a house update: floors!

And, we also were able to incorporate the wood flooring and mix it with other materials like this terrazzo tile detail on area of stairs!

Have you had experience with hardwood floors vs. engineered hardwood floors before? What do you think?

{Photos by Lily Glass and Morgan Pansing. Construction by Boswell Construction, Architecture by Project M+, Interiors in collaboration with Cleo Murnane at Project M+. Written by Joy Cho. This post is in partnership with Wayfair.}

mini thanksgiving pies...

mini thanksgiving pies... / via oh joy!

It's officially just one week until Thanksgiving! No matter what you've got planned for the day, these cute mini banana cream pies will fit in perfectly ;). They're super easy to whip up, but they look like we spent a lot of time in the kitchen making them, right?! Check it out...

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gift guide: $25 and under...

2019 Oh Joy! Gift Guide / Under $25

Thanksgiving is next week (whaaaat?!), which means it's time to start getting those holiday lists ready! Our first gift guide of the year is all things $25 and under. They make great stocking stuffers and gifts for friends! Here are our favorites...

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color adventures: a purple dining room!

color adventures: a purple dining room! / via oh joy!

We're back with our second Color Adventures post of the month, and this time we're showing you how to style a dining room in my new favorite color ;). We layered lots of tonal purple shades to create a relaxing, inviting, and calming space. Check it out...

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an iron-on diy for your jacket!

an iron-on diy for your jacket! / via oh joy!

Happy Monday! Here's a fun project and way to bring life to a simple jacket you already own. It's also a fun way to personalize a gift for a friend this holiday season. Check it out...

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oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)!

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy!

For my entire adult life, I have dreamed of having a nice bathroom that wasn't tiny or falling apart or where the sinks didn't have to be fixed every few months (which has pretty much been my experience with my adult rental apartments). I just want a bathroom that feels luxurious...and works! So, when we started designing this house five years ago, I wondered how our new bathroom could give me my most "Calgon, take me away!" experience...

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy!

When McShane at Project M+ initially asked for our must-haves for the master bathroom, it was all about the bathtub. I haven't taken a bath in my home or apartment since I lived with my parents over 22 years ago. To me, getting a grown-up home meant that I would get to draw myself a luxurious bath at the end of a long day and let Calgon take me away. I even made Bob get in the bathtub when we visited the Ferguson showroom years ago, so that we could find one we both felt comfortable in.

Other than a focal bathtub, my only other requirement was to have two sinks. I longed to never again have moments where our heads are butting over the sink while trying to wash faces and brush teeth on an early Tuesday morning while getting ourselves and our kids ready for the day. So here's a look at the design plan that came about...

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy! // original design

On the left of this drawing is a large window which serves as the focal point of the bathroom. The bathtub sits right by that window. Next to it, there is a separate, smaller shower. On the other side of the shower divided by a pony wall is the toilet which sits next to a double vanity. Five years ago when this layout was designed, we had one kid with one on the way. We didn't know how our lives as parents of two would really be and so the bathtub seemed like something that should take priority back then...

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy!

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy!

Fast forward to earlier this year when the house was being built and the rooms were being framed. It was the first time we got to walk through the spaces and feel everything come to life in true scale. When we walked through the space, it felt as if the jewel of the bathroom (the large window at the end) was mostly being taken up by this large tub that I wasn't sure would get used very often. I felt bad to question its presence but I knew if I didn't, I might regret it later. By the time we were seeing this stage of the build, we valued a great shower and didn't see baths being something we would take very often.

Perhaps we would take baths more often than we do now, but we wouldn't take them enough for it to take up a major footprint and leave us with a much smaller shower for daily use. So, we made the call to change the layout of the bathroom mid-way through construction, and we...REMOVED THE BATHTUB!

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy! // new design

In the updated layout, the area by the window (that was previously the bathtub) is now a large shower with two shower heads (one on each side of the wall if you can imagine one wall being where we are looking from). While the double shower might seem like a sexy boutique hotel detail, it honestly came out of practicality on those days where time is at a premium, and we both need to get ready at the same time.

Then, the toilet moved to a semi-enclosed area where the shower used to be. It has two pony (short) walls which means you're separated from the shower and vanity but not fully enclosed. By moving the toilet, it allowed the vanity to run the remaining length of that wall so we could really spread out a bit more. I am super happy with the changes and glad we caught it in time to be able to make a change that made more sense for our current lives.

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy!

Here's a peek at the space in real life in the process of being built!

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy!

Now, when it comes to tile, I love the clean and sophisticated look of the carrera marble tile, but I felt that we needed some other texture or color elsewhere so it wasn't all white and neutral. I still wanted it to feel serene and not as busy as some of the tile we have in other areas. So, while we were designing the interiors with Cleo at Project M+, we decided to change the tile that was planned for the vanity area to this Clé Tile zellige version instead. Because of the variance in color and texture, it added an extra depth to the bathroom that we were missing in the original design.

1. Clé Tile zellige in Tea Ceremony (for vanity backsplash), 2. Clé Tile Carrera Marble tiles for shower and floors, 3. Caesarstone Pure White for vanity countertop, 4. Schaub & Co. Lumiere Brass T-Knob for vanity pulls, 5. white oak vanity (custom).

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy!

Here's a look at the tile going in! Just when we thought this bathroom was done with changes, the grout went in and the contrast was just not right. When we chose grout way back when, we matched the grout to the marble tile grout thinking that it would look more consistent. But once it went in, the high contrast grout did not do this beautiful soft blue/green tile justice. It seems like such an obvious thing to choose grout that works with the tile, but we've had to make a millions little decisions along the way, that I just said YES and didn't look at it again before the grout went in...

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy!

While I love the tile, the grout on this type of tile should not stand out in order to let the tile really be the focus of the wall. Luckily, our installer has a tool that makes it easy and not expensive to make this change, so we are changing the grout this week to a lighter grey that will blend in much better.

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy!

Here's a sample mock-up that we looked at to compare the colors! I've learned my lesson now that that was something we should have looked at more closely before it went in.

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy!

Here's the fixed grout that JUST went in a couple days ago. It looks SO much better and now you really see the tile because the grout fades away more than it did before.

oh joy builds a house: our master bathroom (and the changes we made halfway through)! / via oh joy!

So, what do you think? Are we crazy for removing a bathtub from a master bathroom or changing the grout color? Would you have done the same or not?

{Photos by Lily Glass. Construction by Boswell Construction, Architecture by Project M+, Interiors in collaboration with Cleo Murnane at Project M+. Renderings by Project M+. All other layouts by Joy Cho. My boots are Red Wing Heritage*.} 

how to make a marbled planter...

how to make a marbled planter... / via oh joy!

Who remembers when we made these marbled hanging planters a few years ago? They were such a hit, that today, we're back to give them a fun update. We used more muted colors (less neon!) and opted to keep them as regular planters to place on a shelf or stack of books. It's a fun way to bring multiple colors to a plain pot, and the possibilities are endless to create your own unique work of art! 

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