5/20/13

shelves! (and crochet and cross stitch!)

You guys. I have good news. The best news. Squeal a little news. We finished our huge wall unit shelf. It looks so cool and huge and empty and full of promise. I will be writing a full post with pictures and tips, but not a tutorial because there is no tutorial in the world that could explain building this thing. It was really a plan a lot, adjust, plan some more, adjust, mess up, and just keep pushing through kind of project.  
Now the fun part begins – because building that monster was no fun at all. Really. Anderson and I are terrible home DIYers. We are nervous and whiny and we just don’t enjoy it. That’s ok. There’s something for everyone. We’ll leave the home improvement to you ambitious, Home Depot on a Saturday morning types.
It doesn't look like much now (Hello, cords!), but I am excited to style it and re-style it and then make Anderson pretend he can have a say in it and then restyle it some more. I'm working on a solution for the ugly cord situation we have going on. (Side note: I cannot use the word situation without thinking of the guy on Jersey Shore lifting up his Ed Hardy t-shirt, pointing to his abs, and smirking at the camera and saying “I think we have a Situation here.” I spent the first 3 months of Sawyer’s life up all night watching Jersey Shore re-runs, so I guess that hideous show will always be ingrained in my memory. Why did I do that to myself? I blame the lack of sleep.) I think we have an idea for hiding the cords but we are just going to chill out for a few days and bask in the accomplishment of a finished project. I also have to finish decorating the room – curtains and art work and all that good stuff. That’s the fun part.
So that’s where I’ve been. Sanding wood and painting pipes and weeping into my American Walnut stained hands. I’m only kind of kidding.
I also decided that I was going to crochet a blanket. Cause you know, I've got so much time. I’ve made progress but I’m extremely bored with it so I am taking a break for a couple weeks. 
 The pattern is the granny ripple and all of the yarn came from Michael's. I have no idea of most of the colors or brands because I lose those little papers. And if I don’t lose them, Sawyer takes them and adds them to his piles of stuff he has strategically placed in front of doorways or around corners in attempt to cripple and destroy us. I think he calls the yarn papers receipts. He is a receipt magpie lately. He has taken to asking for receipts and even throwing a fit when he doesn’t get one. Weird. That’s my boy.
While I break from the blanket, I started a new cross stitch project. The pattern is this one from SatsumaStreet on Etsy. 
 It’s very Mary Blair inspired and I just love it. It’s colorful, geometric, and the perfect mix of retro and modern. I jump around a lot in my crafts, but I always come back to cross stitch. I think it’s my thing. It’s perfect because watching tv is also my thing and they marry so seamlessly. There’s nothing like sitting down with a cold Diet Coke, turning on a show, and cross stitching. It’s the simple things, folks.
So, that’s what I’ve been up to. This is me not apologizing for not being around much on the blog by saying that I'm not apologizing. Doesn't work does it? If you just don’t get enough of me in my bi-weekly to monthly blog posts, follow me on Instagram. I share cross stitch progress pics (riveting!), home decor stuff (ooooh!), and the obligatory cute picture of my kid every now and then (awwww!). My name on IG is allisonmaestri or you can click here (I think) and see my IG page on the ol' internets and follow me there. 
 Have a great week, guys. 

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4/15/13

2013 goals: march results

(Hey, I know it’s the middle of April and I’m just now reporting on my goal results for March. I have no defense other than I would rather be cross stitching than admitting how terrible I am at keeping my goals.)

Read about my 2013 monthly goals here.
Read January's recap
here.
Read February’s recap here

And I thought I was going to do so good in March. 
Yeah. Notsomuch. Let me share my shame with you.

Our Goals Together:
1. One date a month. We went to the movies for my birthday and saw The Host. I’d read the book and enjoyed it and I also enjoyed the movie. Anderson LOVED the movie and told me about 10 times. Then again, he also loves terrible Sci-Fi movies so pretty much don’t rely on us for good movies to see. If I can stay awake, I call it good.
2. Host a dinner once a month. FAIL! Again.

My Goals:
1. Read 2 books a month. Done, but a couple days late. I read Life of Pi (not a fan) and Stolen. I don’t know why exactly I didn’t like Life of Pi. I guess the whole “This is a story that will make you believe in God” was pretty ridiculous. If I didn’t already believe in God, this book sure wouldn’t have gotten me anywhere. Just, I didn’t like it. I did like Stolen, and reviewed it on my Goodreads. You can also read a synopsis of the book there. I’d recommend it –it’s interesting and a book I didn’t want to put down.
2. Finish one embroidery/stitching project a month. FAIL! I started a project, decided I didn’t like it, and don’t know if I’ll finish it ever.
3. Run 30 miles a month. FAIL! I ran about 17. I took a whole month off after my half marathon (I still haven’t shared that on the blog yet, have I?) and picked up towards the end of the month. I’m really hoping that the nicer weather will help me stay committed in April.
4. Complete one craft book project a month. NOPE! I picked up a few of my craft books and thumbed through but stopped there.

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Two out of six. So sad. The overachiever in me is disappointed. The tired, slightly lazy person in me is like whatever, let's watch tv and cross stitch. 
I have been watching Splash – the celebrity diving show... and I love it so much I have watched one of the episodes twice. Also my Grandma was at our house and I made her watch it. Like she cares. What is wrong with me? Also, Dancing with the Stars always gets me. SO MANY SEQUINS, SO MUCH FAKE TAN. CAN’T LOOK AWAY. So obviously I try not to put my brain cells to any good use in the evenings. Here’s to hoping I can be a better, more productive human being in April. But if that means giving up Splash, I’m out.
In other news, we are hard at work on our living room makeover. We are in the process of constructing a huge, 10-foot wide wall shelving unit. Here’s an idea of what it will look like. This project is so big and so messy and my living room literally has boards stacked up on one side and plumbing pipe stacked up on the other. (Least kid-proofed room ever.) It’s so hideous right now that I can hardly bear it. We will forge on because we have no choice now, but also because it is going to be so awesome. Even the guys in the plumbing section at Home Depot were impressed. Since I live for validation and approval from strangers, I feel good about this. Our finish goal is mid-May so let’s just see if I get one goal accomplished. Maybe my only goal for April should be FINISH BIG HUGE 10 FOOT WALL SHELF.

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4/4/13

contact paper cabinet makeover

In my last post, I got really dramatic about how needing the walls in the living room repaired was making me have anxiety attacks. GOOD NEWS! Our walls are now fixed thanks to the help of a friend. I only had to paint the patched up walls and clean up drywall dust. The walls look amazing and so very chair rail free (!!). 

In the midst of all the chaos, I managed to complete a little project I’ve had in the back of my mind for a while. I have this white cabinet that I got at Target on clearance probably 5 or more years ago. I think I paid $30 for it. It has a broken drawer that I had every intention of fixing (yeah, right), but other than that it was in perfect condition and as long as you don’t pull out the broken drawer, you’re good. I love it, but I wanted to go a different, less glamorous route with it. Those big ornate silver pulls are pretty, but not really fitting with the direction I am attempting to go with our house. Even though I wanted a change, I didn’t want to make any permanent changes because who knows if I’ll go on another “chail-rails-must-come-down” like rampage and wish I hadn’t spray painted this lovely cabinet.
First thought – change out the pulls. Easy enough. Could be a cheap project. Problem - I like expensive things (just ask my poor husband) and I was picking out pulls that were $8+. Times 12 pulls and there goes feeding my kid. Next thought – paint the drawers a different color and put on simpler pulls. Problem. Remember, I didn’t want to do any permanent damage and also I’m scared of color in general and can’t commit. The next thing I thought of makes me pretty much a genius so don’t go searching on Pinterest and telling me 50 other people were geniuses first.

Wood grain contact paper!
Would you look at that? It’s so pretty and retro modern now. All I did was cut out squares of the contact paper, adhere them to the front of the drawers, smooth with a credit card, and then cut off the excess with an exact-o knife. I bought some drawer pulls from Home Depot for about $1 each and spray painted them gold. Bam. Under $30 cabinet makeover. Plus I have most of the contact paper roll left over to use for other things. I mean, I don’t know what else, but I have it.


Sometimes I just come and look at this space and dream about what my living room is moving towards. Having a job and a kid really slows things down though. Oh, well. Next on the list is a HUGE wall unit that Anderson and I are going to build. We drew a plan and made a supply list and took out a second mortgage to pay for it (kidding, obviously) and now we just have to get going. It’s just that the shows on the DVR won’t watch themselves.
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3/24/13

delusional, dramatic, and a little crazy

Have you been wondering where I’ve been? Have you even noticed that I haven’t posted for a couple weeks? It’s ok if you haven’t. I’m delusional about many things (like the period of time in Jr. high when I only wore stirrup pants and knock-off keds and thought I looked awesome), but I don’t think that hundreds of people are hanging on my every word. I’ve just been plain old busy with work and life and tearing apart our living room and trying to keep my child from hurting himself/everyone else on earth. I just haven’t had time to blog or really do too much crafting or even look at Pinterest [insert collective gasp]. This is the first time I have opened my laptop in 2 weeks. 
Now this isn’t one of those posts where I go on about how I realize my life is full without blogging or I am quitting or blogging is so shallow and I am above it now. Not at all. I like blogging and I wish I had more time for it. I mean, my house has looked like this for a month since I went into a rage and ripped down our chair rail. 
JK. I didn’t go into a rage. I just temporarily lost my mind and thought if I took down the chair rail I would have enough time/magically gain the manual labor skills to repair dry wall. Remember a couple paragraphs up when I mentioned I am slightly delusional? Proof. I am crazy. Anyway, since I have no shame and I don’t want to be fake about what my life looks like, here you go. 
Oh yeah, take it in. Chair rail missing, exposed nail holes and blue stripe. Mismatched furniture because I am literally too lazy to even list anything on Craigslist. Toys, puzzle pieces, shoes. My new beautiful couch always covered by a ratty old blanket because I don’t like Sawyer to even touch it. (Note to self: look into plastic cover for couch.) Mail piles. No curtains. Just a mess.
After telling Anderson that this room is the reason for my gloomy mood and anxiety attacks (DRAMATIC), we have called in help for the wall situation. Hallelujah. As I write this a week after I took these pictures, our wall is fixed and I've painted and the anxiety attacks have stopped. I have to list a majority of the furniture on Craigslist and sort through what stuff is staying and going, then Anderson and I are going to start on the new wall unit we are building. Guess when I will have time to build a wall unit? Never, but remember I’m delusional so let me live the lie.
So if you feel like your house is a wreck, hey, here’s mine. And if you feel like you are stretched way too thin, I’m right there with you sister. And if you miss my posts (bless you), I do too. Stick around. I have stuff to share.
p.s. Google reader is going away and the world is over (so I’m told). I don’t even know what Bloglovin is so I guess I am going to work on that. I will look into it this weekend and then I will do the blogger thing and come back and tell you all to follow me on Bloglovin, facebook, twitter, Pinterest, flikr, email, etc. Just basically stalk me ok because I don’t want to lose you.

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3/4/13

2013 goals: february results

Read about my 2013 monthly goals here
Read January's recap here


After the success of January, I was ready to take on February's goals. It was a busy month though so I fell short a bit.
 Here's how we stacked up:

Our Goals Together:
1. One date a month. We went out the weekend before Valentine's Day to the new Dine In Theater to see Identity Thief (very funny!). The theater is just like a regular theater except you get to sit in these huge comfy recliners and you have a waiter to bring you food and refill your drinks. On top of that the level we chose was 21 and older so no noisy teenagers allowed. It was heavenly. If it wasn't so expensive we'd never go to a regular movie theater again. 

2. Host a dinner once a month. Waaah-waaah. We failed on this one. Our weekends were busy and we just didn't get it done.

My Goals:
1. Read 2 books a month. 
 I finally got a chance to read The Silver Linings Playbook. I didn't expect it to be such a light, quick read, but it really was a feel good book. The Kitchen House was not a light book. It dealt with slavery, murder, and abuse. It was a heavy read, but the story was well developed and interesting. 

2. Finish one embroidery/stitching project a month. Done at the last minute, but still done. 


Read more about this deer here

3. Run 30 miles a month. Thanks to running a half marathon this month (more about that this week), I finished February with about 40 miles. Now that my marathon is over, let's just see what happens with my running. I have plans to keep up with it so I'm hoping that I hit 30 miles for the rest of the year. 

4. Complete one craft book project a month. Done, and again at the last minute. Maybe in March I'll get my act together? 


  Read more about these cute little cards here

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Not bad, I suppose. I've already chosen March's projects, planned for a date, and plan to start running again this week. It's going to be a good month. 

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3/1/13

book project: microcrafts

I have to start out by admitting that this project would not have gotten done had I not put in place monthly goals for myself. I knew when I set those goals that I would be motivated to do more projects and keep creating, no matter how busy or tired I am. And I was right. Look at me, all self aware.
I stood in front of my shelf of craft books, thumbing through to find an easy, fast project. I’ve already admitted I did this project just to be done. Generally I have a problem with that – just making something so I have something to post, share, etc. But since the whole point of my monthly goals is to stay creative, keep making, and not to let life get in the way of time for myself, I am letting myself make things I wouldn’t normally make just so I am making something.
I picked up Microcrafts: Tiny Treasures to Make and Share thinking that since it is a book about little crafts then they would take little time. I narrowed it down to these itsy bitsy paper pieced cards. 

Do they look little? Probably not. If you are viewing this on a monitor they are probably 5 times bigger than real life. If you are viewing on a phone, they are probably only slightly smaller.
Here’s a better picture for perspective. 
See? Teensy.
I made these one afternoon while Sawyer was playing trains (which is what he does 90% of his waking hours) in his play room. His play room is right next to my craft room so we each did our own thing – he with the trains and me with the paper. He would come in occasionally while I worked to yell some very enthusiastic train related nonsense. “HENRY WENT AROUND THE SHARP BEND IT’S VERY DANGEROUS!” “THOMAS IS PULLING THE PASSENGER CAR!” “MOM I HAVE 10 FREIGHT CARS THAT’S NOT TOO MANY OK!” We only talk train in this house. Sidenote. Sawyer asked Anderson not to be cross with him the other day. Apparently all that British narration on Thomas is rubbing off. Back to the cards. I thought these would take about a half hour of cutting and gluing and I would be back to half heartedly pushing trains around the track (you guys playing trains is so boring.) Turns out these took closer to an hour and a half.
I do think they were worth it. They are so tiny and cute and did I mention tiny? I have them sitting on a shelf in my craft room and they make me smile every time I walk by. 
While I am still not sold on making things just to making things, maybe I am getting closer to appreciating making things for the sake of enjoying the process of making things. Then figuring out what to do with them.
p.s. The link to Microcrafts: Tiny Treasures to Make and Share is an Amazon affiliate link. If you buy the book from my link I make a little percentage of the purchase price for referring the book to you.  The book costs the exact same amount as if you had gone to Amazon and searched for the book yourself, but you help my blog out a little by buying it through my page.

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2/27/13

simple deer cross stitch

After this cross stitch project, I was longing for something simple and easy - a one or two sitting kind of project. I remembered a deer head silhouette pattern in Issue 259 of Cross Stitcher magazine and knew it would be the perfect project to wind down after that last one.


This took a couple of hours of stitching while I watched Downton Abbey. I finally got into that show after about three tries. Everyone was talking about it so I knew there had to be something good despite the first couple of episodes that I found boring and tedious. Once I got familiar with the characters and what was happening I fell in love and watched the first two seasons in about 2 weeks. I just started season 3 today, so no spoilers! I have been avoiding any posts or facebook statuses (statii?) successfully so far. Also I keep saying Mr. Bates in my head over and over again. Mr. Baaaates. If you watch the show you know exactly what I am talking about.


I love this simple little projects just as much as I love the big complicated ones. Ok maybe not just as much, but close. 

The stitching project I am thinking about for March is another big one and I'm excited to pick out colors and get started. Have you been stitching lately? Share a link in the comments - I'd love to check them out!

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2/19/13

book review and project: anna maria's needleworks notebook

Remember when I posted my January goal results? In true Allison fashion, here I am two weeks later to finally share pictures. Two weeks isn't that bad, really. I was just trying to build anticipation. Let's go with that.


Here it is, in all it's colorful glory. Oh, I love it so much. We are in the midst of a living room re-do and this is literally the only thing hanging on our wall right now. I don't know if it will stay where it is, but I had to hang it up immediately after I framed it.


The pattern is from Anna Maria's Needleworks Notebook. This is the biggest cross stitch project I've ever taken on and I was a little scared of it. I'll be pretty honest, it was not the easiest project to get started on. I'll explain why.


This book is beautiful. So beautiful. I have flipped through it so many times just to take in all the beautiful pictures and ideas. The projects are unique and lovely, and there are so many good ones to choose from. I love Anna's stitching tips as well as the stories of her personal history with needlework. 

Having said all that, I have a few nit-picky issues with the pattern. The thread colors listed are for Anchor brand threads and I use DMC. That's not a big deal - just a brand preference and I understand that. I found a conversion chart that compares Anchor/DMC and chose my colors accordingly. However, I have seen a lot of cross stitch patterns that list color charts for Anchor and DMC, which is nice and I wish it would have been done here.


My bigger issue is with the pattern itself. The picture above is a piece of the actual pattern. There are no symbols in the pattern where the colors are. A lot of other cross stitch patterns have symbols in the pattern so you can tell not only from color, but also from the symbol which thread you should be using. For patterns with only 3 or 4 colors this is not a big deal, but for patterns like this one with over 20 colors, it matters. There were like 6 or 7 shades of pink and red and purple in this pattern, sometimes right next to each other and it would have been helpful to have those symbols to tell me which color to use. I had to decipher which pink thread was supposed to be which shade of pink in the pattern and it took a lot of analyzing the pattern and the pictures in the book to figure it out.

I know. Whiney McWhiner.


 Once I got the color situation worked out, it was enjoyable and challenging. I probably put over 40 hours of work into this and the feeling of accomplishment after finishing something so big is pretty awesome.


So, despite the challenge and my problems with the pattern, would I recommend this book to others? Yes. It's just that beautiful. Just be ready to do a little leg work deciding what colors go where if you're going to work on this particular piece.


 Now I say something motivational about how you can accomplish anything if you put your mind to it but I'm running a half marathon this weekend (what?!) so I'll save all the inspirational quotes for after the race. I'll probably only speak in inspirational quotes for a week after the run. Something like this...

How'd the race go?
"If you can imagine it, you can achieve it; if you can dream it, you can become it."
How do you feel?
"The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched - they must be felt with the heart."

No but seriously. Pick a project that challenges you. Do something hard. Then finish it and feel awesome.

(The book link above is an Amazon affiliate link. Read more about what that means here.)

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2/13/13

february happenings

I feel like I have just been barreling through life lately. When I try to drum up a mental picture of what I look like most of the time, it’s not with a calm, graceful confidence that I see myself taking on life. I see myself running Phoebe style trying to get from one point to the next. Work, Gym, Home, sleep, Store, Work, Home, sleep. Back and forth, wildly flailing from one thing to the next. The thing is I don’t feel bad about how my life is or like I am doing a bad job, like desperate that things are too busy or I’m missing out or whatever else you are supposed to feel as a working mom. I feel fulfilled and purposeful. I am good at my job. I am good at being a mom. Our home is not a health hazard. Everyone eats. Everyone is clean. I am pulling this off. Of course I have my moments of self doubt and sheer exhaustion, but for the most part I feel like I am kicking some boo-tay. As a result of all the general life dominating things have slowed down here on the blog, but seasons of life and it's just a phase and all that stuff people tell you when you realize there aren't enough hours in the day.
In case the blog world hasn’t thrown up enough hearts and pink and red your way to alert you to the impending holiday, tomorrow is Valentine’s day. While my home is not all decked out, I have tried to make some time to at least acknowledge the holiday. Maybe I’ll even pick up a card for Anderson on my way home from work. Romantic!
I made heart garlands – one for me and one for a friend. I kept the yellow one and sent away the pink one. The crochet pattern is from Heloise V, and I used this tutorial to walk me through how to make one. It was a fun, relaxing little project. 
I’ve also let Sawyer make some “Balentimes.” He is such a clever train obsessed child that he decorated his hearts with train tracks and more hearts glued onto the train tracks to make a heart train. Then I bought him some scissors at Micheal's and any civilized balentime making went down the drain. He has since shredded every piece of paper in sight to bits. 
I also pretended to be a fun mom and made Sawyer's valentines to take to school for his friends. Just search Pinterest for "heart crayons" and about 1,000 links pop up. I used cheap heart shaped ice trays from Target to make the crayons. I melted them at 185 degrees for about 10-13 minutes. You just kind of have to watch them and maybe use a toothpick now and then to push the half melted crayons down. I made a little card in PicMonkey, glue dotted the crayons to the cards, and wrapped them in little plastic bags in the hopes that these would actually make it home to the kids. We’ll see.
That’s all the crafty stuff I have been working on lately. We are in the middle of a sort of unplanned living room redecoration project. I bought a new couch and chairs and then decided that everything in the room has to change. That's how it works. 
We had the living room repainted a light grey color and since I am going to for a more modern, clean look, I also decided the chair rail has to come down. I’m not a fan of chair rails and they are especially unnecessary in the living room. I removed one section and am sort of dreading all the sanding, spackling, and repainting I will have to do to be chair rail free. I considered hiring someone but 1.) I don't even know what to search for to find someone. Chair rail remover? and 2.) I'm a control freak and I don't want anyone but me making a mess of my house. So. It's up to me to get it done.  
After we are chair rail-less I want to build a full wall shelving unit because I am nothing if not crazy/ambitious/unrealistic about my time. I’m hoping to have this done by May, so we’ll see. I’m even considering taking a couple of days off work just to get it all done while Sawyer is in school. 
I also have my big cross stitch project to share but I haven’t been able to get any good pictures. Coming soon, I promise. It looks so good hanging in our living room, especially since we have literally nothing else on the walls, missing chair rails, mismatched furniture and no curtains. It's the highlight of the room!
That’s all the crazy happening here.  I’m feeling busy and blessed and hopeful. It’s a good way to feel
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2/1/13

2013 goals: january results

Remember my 2013 goals? I mean, I barely do. No wonder New Year's Resolutions fall by the wayside so quickly. I can hardly remember what mine were. Good thing I have this blog to remind me. 


 Click here to read the original post. 
January was a success! Here's how we stacked up:

Our Goals Together:
1. One date a month. We were total overachievers and went on two dates. For our first date we just went to dinner and then I tormented Anderson by dragging him to the antique mall. The look of total desperation on his face every time I said "Just one more aisle" was so cute!

 
I got this cute little printing press drawer to hold some miniatures I have. Anderson was so excited to find it. ha. For our second date, we went out to dinner again and then went to Best Buy to use some rewards dollars that were about to expire. Although our dates were nothing exciting, it's been good for us to learn how to eat a meal without a kid in tow. 

2. Host a dinner once a month. We rocked  this one too. We had some new friends from our church over for dinner one Saturday night. I stepped outside of my comfort zone and made the whole meal - chicken, salad, corn casserole, garlic roasted broccoli, and a pasta salad. So I made boxed brownies for dessert but let's face it - boxed brownies are amazing so there is no point making homemade. It was a fun night and it felt uncomfortably good to let people in my house-sized personal space bubble. Also, I hosted book club this month so twice in one month we had people over. I am being serious when I say that is a big deal for me.

My Goals:
1. Read 2 books a month. Done. I read The Book Thief and The Light Between Oceans. I am not a great book reviewer so I'll spare you any lame/cheesy/weird insights I have, but I would recommend both. They were both interesting and thought provoking and heartbreaking. I cried like a baaaaby at the end of The Light Between Oceans. It was so good, besides being a little dry at the beginning.

2. Finish one embroidery/stitching project a month. Guys. This one. I finished a huge cross stitch project literally on January 31st (it's the same one I shared my progress on a couple weeks ago). I haven't shared it on the blog yet because I cut it so close finishing this and haven't taken proper pictures yet, but here's a little sneak peek courtesy of my instagram feed. 


I can't believe I finished. I've neglected housework, my blog, sleep, and Pinterest for the sake of this project. Totally worth it. For the record, February's project is going to be much simpler. Much. 

3. Run 30 miles a month. I ran about 38 miles this month. That's awesome, but the number should be much higher since my half marathon is next month. It's been really cold out so I've been running at the gym and not really enjoying it. I was bad and skipped a couple long runs because there is nothing worse than an 8+ mile run on the treadmill. February's number should be much higher because I can't afford any more skipping. I've got 13.1 to run in just a few weeks! 

4. Complete one craft book project a month. I shared the string art I made from You Are Awesome: 21 Projects to Make You Happy earlier this month. Read all about it here.

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One fully successful month down, 11 to go. I'm liking this monthly goal thing. I think I've gotten more done this month because I had these little goals to keep me motivated and accountable. I'll try to be better about blogging, but I'm also kind of enjoying just doing and enjoying.

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1/24/13

i finished a nook!

I feel like I might start every post I've written for the last 6 months with some variation of "Life has been crazy." Guess what? Still crazy. For variety's sake I'll rephrase: It's been cray cray. Yes, I do actually say cray cray when I am talking. Out loud, to other people.

Do people actually want to know the everyday happenings in my life? I don't know. I'm pretty sure you don't want to read about another sick family. This is our first winter with a kid in school and he is bringing home everything. I'll leave it at that. I've been working hard at my job. I've always worked hard but things have been extra challenging lately, mostly in a good way. After a big old scary speech given by the legal department regarding social media and written word and how everything you write can come back to get you, I am hardly going to breath (type) a word more about my job. I work. That's it. No litigation for this lady. 

Somehow among all of the simple chaos of life, I managed to put together one more little area of our home. Remember like 9 months ago when I started our bedroom? Yeah. Things don't move too fast around here, because I am still working on it. Click here to read through all the posts about our bedroom makeover. 

There's this weird little nook off of our bedroom and I think I've finally figured out what to do with it.


 I tried to find a picture of what this little area was. This is the best picture I could find:


See that little area to the left? When we moved back into this room, I thought I would like to have a desk in that area. I don't know why I thought I would like to come home after sitting at a desk for 8+ hours a day just to sit at another desk. It ended up being a collecting area for junk and clutter. 


When I came across this chair at the thrift store for $15, I knew it would be perfect for this little corner of our room. I have a pretty strict "no used upholstered furniture" rule when thrift shopping, but I couldn't resist. It's gold velvet! It's really clean and doesn't smell and GOLD VELVET. 

I added in the rest of the decor in this area piece by piece over the course of a couple months. 





I am generally impatient when it comes to wanting a project done. Like I want it done five minutes ago. With our bedroom I've really tried to pace myself, wait for the right thing, search out unique items, and just. be. patient. Also, don't spend a lot of money. The table is the most expensive thing in the space and it's the most I've ever spent for an accent table. I can't think about it too much or I regret spending so much on a cheaply made Target table. ok. Done thinking about it.


Chair - thrifted ($15)
Pillow - Target
Lamp - thrifted ($8)
Magazine rack - thrifted ($4)
Table - Target
Gold birds - thrifted ($5)
Fox - Target (after Christmas sale, no longer available)($5)
Succulent plant - Target
Books - Barnes and Noble
Art - thrifted, handmade (about $15)

Our bedroom is mostly complete. I would still like some art up on the walls, but I'm still waiting for the right thing. 

Since I am a restless soul and can't ever stop, Anderson and I just spent the evening clearing out our living room, dusting the base boards, and pulling out nails to get ready for the painter to come tomorrow and paint our living room. Yay! I've been wanting to paint our living room since we painted our bedroom. I kept saying I'd spend a weekend painting and it would be done. Six months later and the living room was still beigey khaki. So when I came across a Groupon for a cheap painter, I bought it. Oh yeah, and then the couch I have been eyeing for like a year went on sale so I just hopped over to Macy's on my lunch break and bought a couch. This one to be exact. I'm just slightly giddy. Lest you think I throw money around like a cray cray person, I have been contemplating that couch and setting aside money for a very long time for just the right thing. That thing will be delivered next week and I will hug it for two hours straight when it gets here. I'll share pictures. Of the couch. Not of me hugging it.

Hooray for house progress!

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