DIY Marble Magnets @themerrythoughtA few weeks ago I shared these DIY brass magnets and I got a few questions about the marble tile magnets that were in some of the images. I figured it would be easiest to just put together a quick tutorial for them with the links of where to buy everything. Plus it gave me an excuse to make an extra batch of them as well as a little video to go along! This was one of the projects I never got around to sharing that I used leftover tiles from the DIY marble necklace I shared last year.DIY Marble Magnets @themerrythoughtWhat you need:
Marble Tiles
Heavy Duty Glue

How to make it:
Glue magnet to the back of the tile and let dry!

You can find more of our how-to videos over on the Darby App!
DIY Marble Magnets @themerrythoughtDIY Brass Magnets @themerrythoughtDIY Marble Magnets @themerrythoughtDIY Marble Magnets @themerrythoughtxo. Caitlin


DIY Peg Shelf @themerrythoughtI’ve been needing a new shelf for my oils, my collection has been taking over the shelf they’re currently on, and they’re not very easy to organize where they are now. I spotted something similar to this in the background of an Instagram photo a while back and loved the look as well as how versatile it could be. So I gave Mike the challenge of making me something similar. 😉 It reminded me of our DIY Pegboard Wall Organizer, but a bit simpler of a design. I like that the shelves can be moved around to accommodate different heights, or adding in more shelves if needed. Perfect for a growing oil collection! 😉 I figured most might not be looking for a shelf for oils, so I took photos of it with some of my favorite “knick knacks” on it (which made me kind of want to keep it like that – ha!) but you can see it as my “oily” shelf in the last photo.DIY Peg Shelf @themerrythoughtDIY Peg Shelf @themerrythoughtDIY Peg Shelves


– 6 foot 1×2 pine board
– measuring tape & pencil
– drill press with spade bit
– scrap piece of wood
– plywood 3/8”x12”x24”
– table saw
– mitre box
– 1/2” dowel
– sandpaper
– drill & screws

Directions: Cut your 6’ 1×2 board into two 25” pieces with a mitre box. Starting from one end, make a mark at 2” in the center of the wide side of the board and then every 3” from there until you get to the other end; make center marks at each of these lines. Using a drill press and a 1/2” spade bit, drill a hole in a scrap piece of wood; check to see if your dowel fits snugly in this hole. (The dowel we had was slightly smaller than the 1/2” hole so we used a metal file to file the spade bit’s width until the dowel fit snugly). Drill a hole at each of the marks, placing a piece of scrap wood beneath your piece so that you can drill all the way through. Drill a 1/8” hole 3/4” from each end for the screw to mount the board to the wall.

Cut plywood 3-3/4” wide by 18” long for the shelves.

Cut dowels 4-1/4” long (you will need 2 for each shelf).

Sand everything as needed.DIY Peg Shelf @themerrythoughtDIY Peg Shelf @themerrythoughtDIY Essential Oils Shelf @themerrythought #essentialoils


  • Wednesday, February 22, 2017 - 2:02 pm

    Natalie - I love how simple this is. Open shelving is one of my favourite pieces of home decor and these pale little shelves are so lovely

    – Natalie


Maple Bacon Chocolate Cake @themerrythoughtThis cake has quickly become a favorite around here. If you know me at all, you know I’m not a huge chocolate cake fan. I’m a boring vanilla kind of girl. But I do get asked to make chocolate cakes, and try to keep my chocolate cake making skills on par. So here’s how this cake came to be: my niece Parker’s first solid food was a bite of a bacon chocolate cake. My sister works at a college and was attending an event celebrating some of their students being on a cake show & winning. There was a bacon chocolate cake everyone was enjoying, and someone there, not realizing that Parker was too little to be eating any solids yet, gave her a tiny bite of cake! And so her first food was cake! (My kind of girl! 😉). For Parker’s first birthday last fall, my sister asked if I could make some kind of cake that incorporated chocolate and bacon, as a nod to her first food. She also shares a birthday with her dad, so we were celebrating his birthday as well, and he asked if we could add some kind of maple element to the cake. And that’s how the idea of this cake came to be. It was a hit at the party and has been requested quite a few times since then. So I thought maybe this was good enough to share here!Maple Bacon Chocolate Cake @themerrythoughtThe chocolate cake recipe is one I adapted from Hershey’s and is moist and chocolatey! My dad, who is a chocolate cake lover, said it’s one of his favorites so far! (For those not familiar with making chocolate cakes, yes there’s coffee in the recipe, and no, you can’t taste it at all, it just brings out the best in the chocolate, promise!). And for anyone not a fan of bacon, you can leave it out and just enjoy a maple chocolate cake, and that will be very delicious. I made one version of this cake without bacon for my vegetarian sister, and I actually preferred that one. I do love bacon, a lot, but seem to not prefer it in desserts. And it’s definitely easy to control the amount of bacon in this cake, add a little or a lot, depending on your bacon-loving preference!Maple Bacon Chocolate Cake @themerrythoughtMaple Bacon Chocolate Cake

Chocolate Cake:

2 cups sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup unsweetened dark cocoa powder, sifted (I use Hershey’s Special Dark)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1½ teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
½ cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup very hot coffee

Preheat oven to 350º F. Grease and flour three 8-inch round cake pans.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, add sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir on low speed until combined.

Add eggs, milk, vegetable oil, and vanilla to mixture and mix together on medium speed until well combined. Carefully add hot coffee to the cake batter and mix on low speed until just combined. Beat on medium high speed for about 1 minute, batter will be very thin.

Distribute cake batter evenly between prepared cake pans. Bake for about 22-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes, remove from pans and cool completely.

Ganache Filling:

8oz milk/semi mix of good quality chocolate, chopped
1/2-2/3 cup heavy cream (use less cream – closer to 1/2 – if you are using a higher milk chocolate ratio, use closer to 2/3 if using more semi chocolate than milk chocolate)
2 tablespoons salted butter

Place chocolate in a small bowl. Heat cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until simmering. Pour cream over chocolate and let sit for 2 minutes. Whisk together chocolate and cream until smooth and creamy. Add butter, one tablespoon at a time, and whisk until smooth. Set aside 1/2 cup of ganache (for top of cake). Allow to cool until thick. (Can do this night before).

Whipped Maple Buttercream:

2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1/8-1/4 teaspoon maple extract
2-4 tablespoons milk
5-6 cups powdered sugar

In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip butter on medium high speed until smooth, creamy and it becomes very pale, about 6-8 minutes (scrap down bowl occasionally as needed). Add in vanilla, maple syrup, 1/8 teaspoon maple extract, 2 tablespoons milk and 1 cup of the powdered sugar, mix until combined. Gradually add in 4 more cups of the powdered sugar, mixing well. If needed, add in additional powdered sugar until it’s light and fluffy. (Or if it’s too thick, add in a little more of the milk). You can taste the frosting and see if it’s maple-y enough, add more extract if needed (I always add a little more, I like a good maple flavor!). Whip frosting on medium speed for another 5 minutes until it’s smooth, light and fluffy.

You will also need cooked bacon.

To Assemble Cake:

Place one cake layer on cake plate. Spread half of ganache filling over layer. Top with 1-2 slices of crumbled bacon. Place another cake layer on top and spread with remaining ganache and 1-2 more slices of crumbled bacon. Top with third cake layer. Frost top and sides of cake with maple buttercream. Heat 1/2 cup of reserved ganache in microwave about 10 seconds or until pourable. Slowly pour over top of cake. Garnish cake with additional bacon slices, drizzled with melted chocolate if desired.Maple Bacon Chocolate Cake @themerrythoughtMaple Bacon Chocolate Cake @themerrythought


  • Tuesday, February 21, 2017 - 1:25 pm

    LSPierce - as someone who has had the privilege of sampling this cake, I would caution eaters to serve up the slice you want to eat, and then, before you take the first bite, put the cake away. Otherwise you may end up eating far more than you planned! So delicious!!ReplyCancel

  • Wednesday, February 22, 2017 - 7:38 am

    Lyndsay - This cake is just as unforgettable as it sounds! Thanks for making Parker’s first birthday so memorable! I dream of having another slice. It is so versatile with being able to have bacon or not, put bacon in the ganache for extra crunch, or not. thanks for being such a wonderful Auntie to little miss Parker Penny :)ReplyCancel


DIY Reversible Minimal Clock @themerrythoughtThe walls in the new house have been pretty bare since moving in because we haven’t had much time to decorate. I also like to wait to find something I really like instead of putting something up while I wait until I can find/afford the one I really like. I decided to make a clock for the house and couldn’t decide if I wanted a black clock or a white one. I honestly went back and forth a lot trying to picture what else would end up going in that room eventually. Then a genius idea came to me… 😉 a reversible clock! It’s pretty simple to put a clock movement together so I decided to make both sides of my clock a surface that I could use if I wanted. If I need to switch up my color to better match the decor of the room, I can just take it apart and flip it over… in less than 5 minutes!DIY Reversible Minimal Clock @themerrythoughtWhat you need:
Wood Clock Surface
Gold Clock Movement 3/4″
-Black Paint
-White Paint
-Paint Brushes

How to make it:
-Paint one side of the clock and the edges black and let dry.
-Paint the other side white and let dry.
-Use a thin paint brush to paint 12 lines along the side of the clock to represent the numbers.
-Decide which color you would like showing and put the clock movement together.
DIY Reversible Minimal Clock @themerrythoughtDIY Reversible Minimal Clock @themerrythoughtDIY Reversible Minimal Clock @themerrythoughtDIY Reversible Minimal Clock @themerrythoughtFor all you indecisive decorators – you’re welcome!

xo. Caitlin


The Merrythought Lifestyle Blog @themerrythoughtIf you follow us on Instagram, you may have noticed that we celebrated FOUR years of blogging last week! We really can’t believe that four years has gone by so quickly, it’s kind of crazy. We’re so thankful for you, our readers, for following along and encouraging us. Sometimes blogging can feel a bit awkward and vulnerable, and it’s definitely a learning & growing process; which we’re doing with all of you following along on that journey, and we’re incredibly grateful that you stick around and keep coming back. Thank you for all the support – whether it’s commenting, following, liking, pinning, sharing or just clicking over here – we are so thankful for our readers!

We are doing our first ever reader survey in hopes that we can offer you more of what you love during the year. And we’re sweetening the deal by offering a $100 Amazon gift card to one lucky reader that completes the survey. We buy a lot of our supplies for projects from Amazon so it would be a great way to kick start your crafting this year!
The Merrythought Lifestyle Blog @themerrythoughtThe Merrythought Lifestyle Blog @themerrythoughtWe have embedded the reader survey below, if it doesn’t show up, you can fill it out HERE.
You will be given a code after submitting the survey and you can use that to enter the giveaway HERE. The giveaway will be open until 12:00 pm EST on Wednesday, February 22.
Thank you so much for sharing with us and for supporting us throughout the last four years! We will share results in a few weeks!

Photos 2 & 3 by Rachel Liz Photography.

xo. Caitlin & Manda

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  • Wednesday, February 15, 2017 - 11:01 am

    Natalie Harney - Congrats on four years! Looking forward to seeing where you go next!

    – Natalie

  • Thursday, February 16, 2017 - 12:30 am

    Pat Schwab - Hi, I follow you on Bloglovin which wasn’t listed on the survey. Happy 4 years of blogging. I would love to hear about your travels. I am not on Instagram so that questions wasn’t relevant to me. Thanks for great content. Pat SReplyCancel