If you’re a new visitor to My Mid-Century Modern Life, welcome!

Here’s a quick rundown of things.

Hi, I’m Martina. My husband is Jason. We got married young (18 and 20) back in 2003 and moved to Nashville in 2004 to pursue our dreams. I’m a graphic designer and for 10 years I worked full time for a magazine and web publishing company here in Nashville. Now I do freelance but mostly spend my days chasing around and homeschooling our children. Jason is a musician and a Realtor. He has traveled the world as a guitarist and played on many studio projects. He also spends much of his time as a real estate agent. He also takes on the occasional landscape design project, one of his many talents. We’re super happy that we get to make a living doing things we love.

In February of 2007, Jason and I bought a mid-century modern ranch in an eclectic neighborhood called East Nashville, just across the river from downtown. We fell in love with mid-century modern design and the values associated with our grandparents generation of the 1950s. We started collecting all kind of vintage relics—a sofa, chairslamps, dishes, planters—giving them a second chance at a life in our home.

We also put a lot of sweat equity and love into our home. We tiled the floors in our hall bathroom with slate and gave our fireplace a slate tile makeover. We (mostly Jason) did a ton of landscaping and we built a modern wood fence. We completely remodeled our master bathroom and laundry room. We put new bamboo flooring in Jason’s studio. And that’s just to name a few projects.

In the spring of 2011, we decided to respond to the nagging in our hearts and became foster parents for Nashville’s Department of Childrens Services (DCS). That led to two more big home projects. 1. Converting a hall closet into a home office for me. 2. Turning our spare bedroom into a special bedroom suited for 1 or 2 kids between the ages of 0-5. In the years to follow we fostered 6 children.

In September 2011, we were called and asked if we could accept a placement of a 2-month-old little girl. (Our second placement.) We nervously accepted—a baby?! We had no idea the DCS/court drama that would ensue but thankfully, God did a BIG miracle and our girl, Alianna (originally nicknamed Precious here), gets to stay a part of our family forever! We finalized her adoption on August 7, 2012.

Also in 2012 we built an amazing mid-century modern inspired house in East Nashville, working closely with architect Ryan Thewes. In April 2015, our first biological child, our son Isaiah was born. We had planned to continue with foster care once he was around a year old but well before that time I got pregnant again. We decided that marked time to close our chapter as foster parents. Our next daughter, Josephine, was born in July 2016. After a slightly longer break in pregnancy, our next son, Noah, was born in February 2018. In the five years we had doubled the size of our family from 3 to 6.


19 Responses to About

  1. Martina says:

    I jumped over from Molly Pipers blog where she posted your skinny jeans tutorial. It was curiosity due to the fact that you and I share the same rare first name. I spent time reading your blog and you have a beautiful family and a wonderful attitude toward life. From one Martina to another, I wish you all the best.

  2. Holly says:

    Hey! Just came across your site, acutally googling something about beds, I too am a foster parents, along with my husband. We are in the process of completely building a home and we too have a strong faith in Jesus and calling from Him to parent some kids not naturally born to us! BLESSINGS!

  3. I just stumbled here from Pintrest and I’m so happy I did! My husband and I are recent foster/adoptive parents to two little ladies, 3 and 6 yrs old. Our adoption was finalized on Adoption Day 2011 (Nov 19th). We had some very dear friends photograph our adoption weekend, here is the video link: http://vimeo.com/35038014. As you’re thinking about your upcoming adoption day, I would highly recommend hiring professionals to photograph the experience for you. It was amazing for us!

    • mahlbrandt says:

      Oh man! Way to make me cry at my desk at lunch! What a beautiful video. Thanks for the suggestion. I had been thinking about getting family photos before or after the adoption day but I love the way you have the whole experience documented with audio and photos. Great idea!

  4. pdustin says:

    Just wanted to drop in and say thank you so much for the advise on just measuring the “full-size” headboards. It’s something that sadly never even occurred for me to do to try and fit my Queen. I did just that and picked up the last 60″ one they (P.P.M.) had for $35!!! My frame doesn’t use a foot-board so I totally done with my bed and it looks great all thanks to you. Figured I owed you some sort of finders fee so you and your blog have a shout out on my last post (complaining about taxes and bragging about my headboard find.lol). I owe you one. LOOOVE the Mercedes by the way. Too awesome…Hope you,your hubs,and those kiddo’s have a wonderful week 🙂

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  6. Mr. and Mrs. says:

    My hubby and I also got married young (just 19 and 20) in 2003 and we are renovating our new home and also looking seriously into foster care. Anyhow, I am very happy to hear about your success with adopting out of foster care. She is beautiful!

  7. graftingin says:

    Just found your blog, loving it! What a great story, ya’ll.

  8. caprecia zdradzinski says:

    just found your blog and we too are foster parents and are adopting our little blessing after 2 1/2 years of being her foster parents we will soon become her forever mommy and daddy, we were blessed 18 and 15 years ago with two bios and now God has blessed us again through adoption. Congrats on your precious angel!

  9. I love your blog! It’s so inspirational and I love reading your posts and seeing your updates! You truly are an inspiration, my parents tried for the longest to adopt but always ran into complications. I’ve always felt called to adopt, and reading about your story makes my heart smile! I nominated you for The Very Inspirational Blogger Award! I hope you don’t mind!

  10. Stephanie says:

    Hi there, just came across your blog and I’m so happy I did. Me and my long-term BF just bought a mid-century ranch and we are in the process of a complete renovation. 🙂 – Stef

  11. Greetings, I just came across your blog after I was searching for blogs on potty training. I am going through the process again for the third time with my 2year old toddler and it seems like this is the longest process ever. I think your site is very interesting and simply unique. Best of luck and blessing to you all 🙂

  12. loren says:

    I like reading your blog and build a deck on our mcm home with inspiration from your web site…..I think its mcm but I’m having a hard time making decisions when we do home improvement s. Take care hope all is going well.

  13. Megan says:

    Loving your Blog. My husband and I are about to be certified foster parents through Youth Villages in Nashville and I am also a graphic designer. Excited about whats to come and love hearing others stories, it’s encouraging to see other young couples doing this, I found It’s hard to find others this age fostering in the area. Great job on the blog.

  14. Just found your blog–caught you at at tender time, reading through so many posts. God bless and keep you all three as you move ahead. I’m sure you’ve been a huge help to so many readers who are in difficult times as well.

  15. SaraLucero says:

    Hi! Are you on instagram? I’d love to follow! It sounds like we have a lot in common 🙂 I’m a photographer and my husband is a musician at our church and we are in the foster to adopt process and we also live in a mid century modern home! HA! I’m @andthatmakesthree Hope to talk to you more soon!


  16. Elizabeth - Indy says:

    Hello – I’m so excited that a friend shared your page with me. My husband and I are foster parents as well and are in the process of adopting our first little gal, we’ve had 12 kiddos come in and out of our home in the first year and miss them dearly. They are currently framing our house and we were looking for Scriptures to write on the beams and I was glad to see what verses you used for your home. May God bless you in all you do!

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