nov14 193
Shortcut Apple Dumplings!

Built-in Mudroom Bench {Kitchen}

ATTENTION! If you entered our Paintbrush Starburst Clock Kit giveaway by the name of Shalini G, you are the WINNER!!!!! (and have quite possibly inspired the name of our next child)… Check your email asap Shalini! Now onto business:


So… the kitchen.

I wanted to build a bench that appears ‘built-in’ to extend across the expanse from the end of the cabinets to the wall by the door.

Adding a breakfast bar to your exsisting island! {Sawdust and Embryos}

But let me explain something first… this bench is our ‘dump zone’ for pretty much everything. But most specifically tools and/or things that need to go out to the garage. We’ve tried to be disciplined and keep it clean on several occasions. But it just doesn’t happen that way. So, while I still want to make an effort to keep it clean, I also want to be realistic and acknowledge the fact that our ‘bench’ isn’t really for sitting.

So my plan is to build a second bench that ROLLS OUT from under the ‘build-in’ bench, so the littles can sit a put their shoes on. And then the bench will just roll back under the other bench! The problem with this is that the built-in bench need to be so sturdy and hefty that it doesn’t need any supports in the center… just on the two ends. I was just about to give up on the whole idea until I happened upon this pic in my Facebook feed:

Bench plans by Ana White

Those are 2×4’s going across the top… and would be so super sturdy!

I’ve always been intimidated to use ‘building plans’ because numbers and measurements and INSTRUCTIONS freak me out. But this one (by Ana White!) looked easy enough. And I thought this would be a good way to break myself in!

Sketch of FUTURE KITCHEN! {Sawdust and Embryos}

I started by removing all the trim in that little cove of the kitchen. Ain’t it purrrdy that way?

Prepping for a built-in bench in kitchen {Sawdust and Embryos}

I bought myself a few 2×4’s and 1×4’s based on the cut list Ana provided in the plans, and started cutting them to size! I had to modify the dimensions slightly so it would fit perfectly into my area. And I made it 2” taller as well so there would be more room for the bench underneath.

Here are my two end braces. SO SIMPLE!

photo 2 (5)

Then, for my horizontal boards, since I wanted them to be stained to coordinate with the live-edge breakfast bar, I went ahead and did that before assembling since it would be very difficult to do after. Here they are all stained in RustOleum Dark Walnut:

Built-in mudroom bench {Sawdust and Embryos}

After priming and painting my end supports white (to flow with the white cabinets), it was time to put them into place!

Making a built-in mudroom bench in kitchen {Sawdust and Embryos}

Before I put the horizontal slats into place, I wanted to put the trim back on. Nick helped me with this part… cause I’m no finishing carpenter. We even put quarter-round around the base of the bench brackets to make it really look finished and ‘built-in’.

kitchen bench

We taped around all the edges and caulked all those cracks.

kitchen bench1

Then was time to slide in all those horizontal slats! I some of them were a tight fit and needed a little nudge with the rubber mallet. I only screwed the front slat on (because it’s the only one that wasn’t self-secured), and filled those holes with a little stub of a dowel.

kitchen bench2

Built-in mudroom bench with plans by Ana White {Sawdust and Embryos}

I still need to give the trim a fresh coat of white paint, and dab some dark walnut stain on those dowel plugs, but other than that… this baby’s DONE!

Built-in Bench for kitchen mudroom area {Sawdust and Embryos}

Seeing these little parts of my dream kitchen come together are so exciting! And I love this feeling of taking initiative and rolling up my sleeves to do things myself. I’m getting so much more confident! Next, I’ll be building the little rolling bench (with openings for baskets) and THEN there will be vertical cubbies going up the corner of the wall. So many plans!

If you missed my Kitchen Island/Breakfast Bar project, click HERE to catch up!



nov14 193

I feel that it’s time for a little life-update of sorts. Lots of little things going on ‘round these parts, but nothing substantial enough to deserve a dedicated post. I’ve had these fabric swatches (from Online Fabric Store) on the trim in the dining room for 3 WEEKS, and cannot make a decision on curtains. The hardest part for me is making the dining room feel cohesive with the living room and the gray/gold pattern above the board and batten. Will a pattern be too clashy and busy? Will a … [Read More...]

Dipped Paint Brush Starburst Clock


One of my favorite blogs to read is A Beautiful Mess. There’s always so much inspiration, DIY projects, recipes, and phenomenal photography to be had. Awhile back, I saw this amazing Wooden Spoon Clock and fell in love. It’s so bright and cheerful and creative! I really wanted to recreate something like this… but I’m no Martha Stewart in the kitchen, so the wooden spoons didn’t really feel like it fit with the theme of my life. And that’s when I decided to use PAINT BRUSHES, and add my … [Read More...]

DIY Wooden Paper Doll Tutorial


As much as the girls love to dress up, I knew that making some sort of ‘paper doll’ would be right up their alley, AND likely provide hours without whining of entertainment for the littles! And based on the changing season, indoor entertainment ideas are becoming very important these days. I had purchased this wooden tray from Target awhile back to put cupcakes on at a baby shower I was hosting for a friend. And since then, it’s just been a project WAITING to happen. I started out … [Read More...]

Shortcut Apple Dumplings!

Shortcut Apple Dumplings!

Hey hey! It’s Meghan with Cupcakes with Sprinkles! Its almost Thanksgiving and so I am getting ready to start making pies but I had to share my new favorite fall desert. It is one of the easiest things I think I've made in a very long time. These are a shortcut version of making apple dumplings but are so amazing you'll make them over and over again. I promise! The outside is crispy and flaky, the apple is soft and a little tart, and the sauce, oh the sauce, its sweet, creamy, and tastes like … [Read More...]

Wood-Disk Table Lamps {& Wiring Tutorial}


I’ve been really pushing myself to step out of my comfort zone lately (namely with the breakfast bar). I don’t know what came over me… it’s not like it’s even New Years yet. I just resolved to do more on my own without relying on others to do things FOR me. One such thing that would have normally intimidated me is ELECTRICAL ANYTHING. I don’t wire lamps, I don’t wire outlets, I don’t wire light switches. And why would I when there’s a perfectly capable and willing (not to mention SEXY) man-child … [Read More...]

Breakfast Bar Counter {Live-edge & Lacquer}


Oh man, I just returned from a super fun trip to North Carolina, and I’m BUGGERED OUT! It was a huge honor to be invited to the Lowe’s Home Improvement Headquarters in Mooresville, NC… and such a blast to hang with some other fabulous bloggers. Who knew that this little blog would open up so many doors and fun opportunities?! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ But today I’m hear to share the final chapter in my Breakfast Bar build that I’m tacking BY MYSELF! As you know, I framed in a wall to the … [Read More...]

Quilt Inspo and Baby Bump {23 weeks}


It’s hard to believe I’m 23 week pregnant already! It seems like it’s gone fast… yet at the same time, March 1 seems sooooo far away. As you can see from the photo above, my butt is growing pretty much in proportion to my belly. This is a mystery to me, because I’ve never had much ‘bass’ if you know what I mean. I’m sure this phenomenon is directly related to my constant hunger pangs and everything-bagel cravings. I’ve still got tonnnns of energy, and am trying to get the most out of … [Read More...]

Adding stone to the breakfast bar!


Are you ready for the next step in my Breakfast Bar build? So far, I showed you how I sawed off part of the island and framed a wall, then made my own corbels! A lot of you have been asking me what color I’m going to paint the actual island. I’m guessing there are a handful of people that are worried that I was going to leave it as plywood since I recently wrote this post. But… YOU’RE ALL WRONG! I actually first considered beadboard to add some texture. But that’s a little trendy for me, … [Read More...]

Sometimes they snuggle.


The girls shared a crib for the first 2 years of their life, and separating them pert’near ripped out my delicate mommy-heart. But it had to be done because they were picking on each other and keeping each other awake. One slept in the crib and the other slept in a pack-and-play a few feet away (and we alternated every night)… far enough that they couldn’t touch each other, but close enough that they could throw objects at each other (which they totally did). This arrangement went on for … [Read More...]