Since the New Year I have been in a clean-up and clear-the-countertop mood... and not only the countertops, but the closets, drawers and cabinets!

Making changes here and there... fluffing and fussing!

One of the biggest changes I have made recently is my family room fireplace and mantle...

Here is a "before"... Christmas 2010 ...

The "After".... 

We FINALLY replaced the green tile fireplace surround with whitewashed brick...  very neutral and soft. This project has been on my radar for quite some time. It made a huge difference in the overall look of our family room!

We could not order a new glass door for the fireplace... so next week, I'm pulling off the brass and repainting it with an oil-rubbed bronze heat resistant spray paint...

The mirror over the mantle was replaced with a big clock I recently found on sale. That mirror has hung over the mantle for 18 years... "time" for a change!

The mirror will be hung in the living room I am working on.

The rest of the mantle was kept very simple... touches of white and browns... a soft almost bare look for winter.  Less is more with this big clock as the focal point.

The buffet lamps are the same ones in the "before" photo. A little paint and a linen lampshade gives them a new look!  Stop back for post about the lamp transformation tomorrow.

The next big project for this area is to knock out the windows and wall on the right side of our family room and replace them with a wall of french doors leading to the porch.  But that is down the road a bit!

But for now... I am happy with the new changes!