Lifting Up Nashville- A Flood Story

As most of you know Nashville experienced a record-breaking flood back in May. (If you need some background/ or have time- watch this video.)

It truly was a disaster. Some places were hit a lot worse than others. Houses were completely gutted with ruined possessions stacked into a trash pile in their front yard- for weeks, even months.  I wanted to help (in ways other than sending in money), but didn't even know how or where to start. 

The week after the flood I got an email out of the blue from Katie, a loyal blog reader and a recent victim of the flood. She explained her situation... Recently married. Living in their very first home in Bellevue right by the river. The water came through the windows so suddenly that they had minutes (literally) to grab their dogs and run for safety. They were able to make it to a family friend's home and turned on the TV to find the news zoom in on THEIR house. They sat there in shock as they watched their beloved home go under water... 

(their home is the middle one, and this was MID flood)

I find all of this out later but in the initial email Katie basically said, "We lost our home in the flood... and we're trying our best to piece it together. I'm overwhelmed. And was wondering if there was any way you could help me with some design advice- ?"

Are you kidding?- an answered prayer! I called her immediately. 

She told me how scared she was. And how the waters came up above the lower kitchen cabinets, ruining nearly everything on the bottom floor. Once they were finally able to make it back into their home (after the waters receded) they walked into an eerie MUD pit- 


 that didn't feel a bit like home.

Katie kept saying: "I know I'm grateful to own a home, but the thought of moving back into the exact same house where we ran for our lives makes me sick to my stomach." 


Honestly, it made me sick to mine just hearing her shaky voice over the phone. After a long discussion I insisted to meet them at Lowes one day to help knock out the decisions.

And we did. We were running around Lowes making selections right and left! Extreme Makeover- Super Speed Edition. (It was fun!.. right guys??:)

The kitchen used to be really dark so I knew lightening it up would make a huuuge difference. They were able to salvage their granite (yay!) so we picked neutral paint to go with it. Katie also has a great eye for design and she did a lot of this herself, so it was really fun to work with her.

Ok, I'll stop talking. Before & After pictures are much better!



after !!


To save some money, we decided to leave the doors off on one section of the kitchen. I think the open shelving ended up adding a lot to the room.


after !!




(this was all Katie- she picked out those awesome lamps at a flea market. I love them.)

before (master bath)








after !!




Remember the cool posters designed to raise money for the flood? They are perfect for this spot. 


I cannot take credit for putting this home back together. A wonderful team of volunteers worked long hours (of manual labor!) to rebuild it. Not to mention- Katie and Austin (above) poured their hearts into putting comfort and life back into their home.  I just helped with selections, made new friends, and blogged about it. :) 

So, you can join me in saying:   Welcome home, Katie & Austin!!

(Bus Driver, Move that Bus !! >?)

Happy weekend,


THE DETAILS: (all from Lowes, who were supporters of the flood, where Home Depot was NOT)

Kitchen cabinet paint color (and trim): Valspar, Del Coronado Taquila

Living Room & Kitchen walls: Valspar Light Raffia 

Bedroom walls: Valspar, Cincinnati Hotel Brigg Beige

Bathroom walls: Valspar, Bay Sands

Bathroom tile: American Olean, white ceramic, 3x6 

Kitchen hardware: Gatehouse bronze cup pulls and knobs 

Kitchen pendants (another one of Katie's fab selections!): Ballard Designs! You can pick a fabric.