Hello and welcome to Tumbleweed Tidings! It seems like forever since I’ve posted, but I’ve had some good reasons. We had just finished our sixth condo staging job the first weekend in January and were getting ready to leave our Idaho bungalow, when we received the call that my mother had been taken to the hospital by ambulance with an intestinal blockage, and was scheduled for emergency surgery in a few hours. My husband broke the land speed record between Sandpoint Idaho and Walla Walla Washington, and we arrived at the hospital just a couple of minutes after they wheeled her in to surgery. She spent several days in the hospital and the past two weeks in rehab. We have been going back and forth often to visit, and retrieve things she needs from the house. She is doing much better and will be back in her own home very soon. What a scare for our family!

The wall decorated for Christmas

And now, back to today’s blog topic; how I refreshed our kitchen wall and turned it into a travel wall. We have a large wall over the eating area in our kitchen. Over the years, I have had various arrangements of pictures, copper items, and vintage pieces. This year for Christmas, I hung a wooden tool caddy that held six tine planters, and filled it with poinsettias and Christmas ornaments. I loved that piece so well in that location, that I decided to keep it there year round and fill it with seasonal greenery.

I started by filling two of the tins with small potted teaberry bushes, then put two darker teaberry balls on either side. On the end containers, I inserted succulents in a variety of colors and some that dangled over the ends. I had to be strategic about the dangling plants, as my husband sits on that church pew for meals and wouldn’t appreciate those hitting his head:)

So, planter, check! Now what to do with the rest of the wall? I started by putting a large door pediment that my husband made for me several years ago, at the top. Now what? As I went poking through my available pictures, I knew I didn’t want to go back to the framed pear and plum pictures that had been there before. And then I spotted the yet-to-be-hung pictures I had brought back from our trip to the UK last summer. I was planning to use them in the living room, but this wall is something that we look at so often it just seemed perfect.

When we travel, our go-to souvenirs are Christmas ornaments. We have collected them for over 20 years and our tree is like a trip down memory lane of places we’ve visited over the years. Lately, I’ve also started to select some framed prints and photographs that are already matted but not framed. They slide in the outer zippered area of my suitcase and travel well. Once home, I take them to our local framing shop and they frame them for just the cost of the frame.

To create this particular travel wall, on the left side there are two prints from our time in Hawaii. The bottom one is the iconic Moana Surf Rider Hotel, one of the two oldest in Honolulu. The picture above it is a row of rocking chairs that sit on the front porch of the same hotel, where we have sat many times just watching the world go by.

In the middle, there is a long narrow watercolor of London, which includes all of the main attractions in one print. This picture is so special to me because it is a constant reminder of my first trip to this beautiful city. To the right of that is a copper plating print I bought in Quebec of the famous Fairmont Le Chateau Hotel that we have visited a couple of times. And on the wall next to the slider, is a photograph of an icehouse and boat that we purchased in Scotland.

Once the wall was finished, I was in love with how it turned out. It doesn’t look super “kitchen-y” but I’m okay with that. The eating area is somewhat separate from the rest of the kitchen and it can handle it’s own décor. While I was at it, I reused a runner I had onhand, and refreshed the wooden trough on the table with some pinecones and greenery. I also replaced the Christmas pillows with some cream ones with geometric circles that came with our couches. I rarely use the ones that come with the couch, so this was the perfect place to use them.

The next time you are traveling far away, or even near your own backyard, think of local artwork as an interesting way to fill your walls. Not only are you usually supporting a local artist, but the walls will tell your personal story, and you will be able to relive travel memories any time you want, just by looking at your walls!

Good tidings,


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