5 Home Changes & Projects I Accomplished in 2023 (While Maintaining My Goal of Simplifying)

2023 was a year of slowing down and simplifying. While it wasn’t perfect, I worked hard to be thoughtful in my decisions and was intentional with my “yes”es, when it came to our schedule, activities, purchases, projects, and general livability in our home. In the coming year, I have more to do to work towards those initiatives but I’m also ready to relax my approach, just a little bit. I feel good about it and our efforts this year have been refreshing and eye opening.

That said, from big project completions to small refreshes, I was still able to make improvements and updates to our home that didn’t negate my efforts and priorities. As a recap for the year, a little inspo for 2024, and in celebration of Wayfair’s End of Year Clearance event (up to 60% off home faves for the perfect opportunity to close out your year!), I’m sharing five home changes and projects I accomplished this year.

*Posts on KelleyNan.com may contain affiliate links. While this post is created in partnership Wayfair, all opinions, concept, and creative are my own. Click HERE for full disclosure.*

1. Living Room Rug Overhaul

The fact of the matter is… my dogs are bad. Okay, they aren’t bad bad, but they’ve have had their fair share of rebellions in our home and rugs have always been tough for our family. I don’t shy away from white walls and light upholstery, despite having a young child and multiple animals in the house, but our rugs don’t tend to have a super long life. And last month, while I had recognized a while ago that it was past time to replace our living room rug, I finally decided to move forward with a new one.

I love love getting our big home furnishings from Wayfair — for the value and free shipping — but this is especially true for rugs (which is probably why the majority of the rugs in our home have come from Wayfair). BTW — during their End of Year Clearance event, rugs are up to 60% off, so it’s a great time if you’re in your rug-changing era ;). You can browse them all HERE.

When I started looking for a replacement rug, I wanted something that wouldn’t fade into the white walls and fireplace but would still have some subtlety. I started pulling a bunch of contenders and as I often do, and to visually weigh my options, I dropped them on top of a photo to get an idea of what they may look like in real life. Here were the competitors for the living room. By the way, each rug is linked within each photo — tap to view alternate color schemes, close-ups, and all the sizes available.

After considering all the factors — including how thick they appeared, I ultimately went for Rug 2. And here’s how it turned out!

Modern Christmas Living Room Two Story

Sources: Checkered Area Rug (Antique/Mist — 7′ 9″ x 9′ 9″) | Round Wood Accent Table | Large Stoneware Jar on Hearth

I absolutely love how it looks in real life, in our space! And I can’t get over the affordability factor, either. I ordered the 8.5’x11.5′ size, which was a little larger than our previous rug, and the sizing is perfect. For it’s large size, it is currently on sale for $350, plus, it ships free (as all Wayfair orders of $35+ do).

Modern Christmas Decor

Checkered Area Rug (Antique/Mist — 7′ 9″ x 9′ 9″) | Large Stoneware Jar on Hearth

It reads a little more gray on screen and a little more creamy/beige in person.

Christmas Living Room Decor

Checkered Area Rug (Antique/Mist — 7′ 9″ x 9′ 9″) | Large Stoneware Jar on Hearth

Rug 13, Rug 14, and Rug 15 are all strong contenders for our next rug in the conversation room…

2. Updated & Modernized the Breakfast Nook Gallery Wall

THESE frames were just what I was looking for to update our breakfast nook gallery and I was so happy to get them at such a great price since galleries can get pricey with all the frames. I purchased these frames, knowing how much I like them since I’ve used them several other places, and finally followed through with the wall art project. It forced me to incorporate recent trips and the aesthetic update was a big win.

Matted Black Metal Picture Frames (11″ x 14″)

3. Entry Bench Solution

This was a small change, made by unassumingly shopping my home, but I’ve had it on my list for a while to update the bench I had in our entry. It wasn’t really a big priority and after playing musical chairs (or in this case, musical benches 😉 ), I accidentally moved my favorite pair of upholstered x stools to the space, and the next thing I knew, I realized they’d been there for months. I guess it’s their new home and I love them just where they are.

x benches entry

Metal Upholstered Accent Stools

In contrast, the opposite side of the entry has remained totally and completely unchanged.

Christmas and Winter Decor Ideas

Bronze Mirror | Gray Three-Drawer Chest | Large White Stoneware Vase | Entry Way Rug (Natural – 2’x3′)

4. Eliza’s Big Girl Bedroom Transition

Eiza big girl bedroom was completed at the start of the year and while it’s a big change from her nursery, I had intentionally outfitted her infant room with big pieces she would grow with. So, I made a few affordable and easy updates (like THIS pretty rug — currently under $230 for the 7.5’x9.5′ ) and am still so in love with how her room turned out. (See her full room reveal HERE).

Purple Bedroom Ideas for a Little Girl Bedroom

Machine Washable Area Rug ( 5 x 7’6″) | Table Lamp | Dresser (similar 1) (similar 2)

5. Kitchen Completion

After taking far too long to complete, the kitchen was FINALLY finished this year. The finishing details — like our cabinet knobs and pulls — were the cherry on top and we continue to be so satisfied with our choice in backsplash tile. It feels so much lighter and brighter in here, and marking this space off my list did big things for my mental headspace.

Agreeable Gray Sherwin Williams Kitchen Cabinet Paint Makeover

Kitchen Runner (2′ 6″ x 10′) | Knobs (Champagne Bronze) | Pulls (Champagne Bronze) | Backsplash Tile | Le Creuset Dutch Oven | Le Creuset Gold Knob

While I committed to getting as much in drawers and cabinets as possible to minimize visual clutter and keep countertops free, I adore seeing my big Le Creuset Dutch oven on display, ready to go, and it makes sense since I use it so often.

Warm Light Gray Kitchen Cabinet Makeover with Agreeable Gray Sherwin Williams Paint and Shaker Cabinet Fronts

Kitchen Runner (2′ 6″ x 9′ 9″) | Knobs (Champagne Bronze) | Pulls (Champagne Bronze) | Backsplash Tile | Le Creuset Dutch Oven | Le Creuset Gold Knob

If you’re interested in a kitchen update but not the financial/time/resource investment of an overhaul, I can’t emphasize enough how a few simple changes (like hardware) can make. (You can see the full kitchen reveal HERE).


So, Wayfair has a big sale happening to close out the year, but where do you even get started? Well, if you have a specific need, obviously start there. But, if you’re more into browsing and letting Wayfair “tell you” what you need 😉 I’ve included a few favorites from home categories of all kinds below. There are some gorgeous pieces to be had and fantastic deals to be scored.

And while I brag on the big furniture pieces a lot for their value and free shipping, don’t forget about smaller pieces — like THIS big gorgeous vase — just waiting to be a statement-making centerpiece in 2024!

Wayfair End of Year Sale

1. Web-Backed Bar Stools (set of 3) | 2. Handmade Stoneware Table Vase | 3. Rattan End Table | 4. Round Wood End Table | 5. Oriental Light Gray/Beige Rug | 6. Square Arm Sofa | 7. Terracotta Table Vase | 8. Sideboard | 9. Dome Pendant Light | 10. Wood Nightstand | 11. Upholstered Arm Chair | 12. Coffee Table

Wayfair End of Year Sale

1. Upholstered Wingback Bed | 2. Pendant Light | 3. Unglazed Ceramic Lamp | 4. Glass Table Lamp | 5. Round Coffee Table | 6. Metal Arch Mirror | 7. Oriental Ocean/Sand Area Rug | 8. Six-Drawer Double Dresser | 9. Six-Drawer Weathered Finish Dresser | 10. Boucle Side Chair (set of 2) | 11. Boucle Swivel Arm Chair


Browse the full sale HERE.

Area Rugs — Up to 60% off

Bathroom Vanities — Up to 55% off

Bedroom Furniture — Up to 55% off

Cookware & Bakeware — Up to 55% off

Curtains & Drapes — Up to 50% off

Entryway Furniture — Up to 55% off

Flooring — Up to 40% off

Hardware — Up to 40% off

Home Decor — Up to 60% off

Home Office Furniture — Up to 60% off

Kitchen Faucets & More — Up to 50% off

Kids Bedroom Furniture — Up to 40% off

Kitchen & Dining Furniture — Up to 60% off

Lighting — Up to 60% off

Living Room Seating — Up to 55% off

Living Room Tables — Up to 55% off

Major Appliances — Up to 40% off

Mirrors — Up to 60% off

Nursery Furniture — Up to 40% off

Small Appliances — Up to 40% off

Storage & Organization — Up to 50% off

Tableware — Up to 40% off

Wall Art — Up to 60% off

Fireplaces & Heaters — Up to 40% off

Seasonal Decor — Up to 45% off

Are you looking forward to a project in the new year? Tackling a space? Getting a room settled once and for all? Tell me all about it in the comments below and here’s to loving all we create in 2024!

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  1. 12.20.23
    Janie Calhoun said:

    Hi Kelley, I LOVE your living room Wayfair rug. I know you said it is showing more gray in your pictures and when I look at it on Wayfair, it is very creamy, almost doesn’t look like the color of your rug at all. I’m asking for your advice, please. My living room is white walls, coffered ceiling which the inside of the squares are painted iron ore, creamy white sectional, light oak hardwood floors. I’m very hesitant about the creamy, would prefer the colors show more like your pictures. I don’t want to order the rug and then not like the colors and need to return such a big rug. What do you think, may I ask your opinion, please? Thank you!

    • 12.21.23

      Hi Janie, I love my new living room rug, too. It’s neutral enough to go with any decor, but a lot will depend on the amount of light you get in your living room. I have white walls, too, with a white ceiling. My sofa is off white, but I also have lots of wood tones and also have black leather chairs. The price also can’t be beat!

      • 12.24.23
        Janie said:

        Thank you, Kelley! You’re right, the price cannot be beat. I appreciate your help, I am going to order the rug! It looks fantastic in your home! Thank you again!

  2. 12.26.23
    Jennibell said:

    Love this round-up! We have put your old cabinet knobs to use on our newly painted cabinets and it is just the statement I wanted for our space!! It took SO LONG to come up with the color for the cabinets though :/
    Little changes (like your entryway) can make big impacts – I have to remember that after painting our cabinets and putting in two new doors this year – something “small” next 😉
    Happy 2024 to you!!

    • 12.28.23

      Hi Jennibell, Thank you so much for taking the time to stop by and I’m so happy those cabinet pulls were put to good use. And I get it…paint colors are so hard. I agree, little changes can make a big impact and continue to keep things fresh and different. Happy New Year to you and I hope your next project is a fun one!