Saturday, July 30, 2011

Things I learned this weekend.

In no particular order, these are the things I learned while on my overnight away with my man:
 Two days and one night go by way too fast.  
  If a conga line spontaneously forms and you don't jump up and join it, you will always regret it.
 Baby seals are the cutest things in the whole entire world.
 There is nothing better than an icy pina colada on a hot summer night.
 I love watching other people dance.  Especially old men with jaunty hats like the kind Greggory Peck wore, and old-fashioned moves.
 Blue skies seem a whole lot bluer when you're with the love of your life. 
 Watermelon salad should always be eaten by the bowlful. 
 My husband is amazing at completely ignoring people he knows and giving me his full attention, when it's date night.
 If you meet someone named "Uncle Frank" at a BBQ, he will invite you and everyone around, to the wedding the next day.

If you have the option of Ocean view, vs. parking lot view... always take the Ocean view.
 Letting your husband place the order for the picnic will always rock, because he will always order something with bacon.
 Sunsets are romantic.
 My man could be a professional rock-skipper. 

Kayaking is addictive. 
 If you do go out kayaking for the first time, surrounded by curious harbor seals, you won't want to ever come back in.
 If you do go out kayaking for the first time ever, you will be so happy that you spent the past six weeks doing P90X.  But you won't tell your obnoxious trainer husband. 
 If you do go out kayaking and you don't text your BFF that you're still alive after two hours, there will be one (or more) texts waiting for you when you return.
 Room service is the coolest thing ever invented. 
 I might have a salmon addiction.
 There are not enough thanks in the world to offer people who keep your hoodlums overnight, sneak them Mountain Dew, love on them constantly, take them to parks, buy them dinner, and give you a much needed break.
 There is nothing sweeter than the words, "I sure missed you Mama."

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Creative Chaos. Simply organized.

We have this slightly useless room in the very front of our home.  I suppose it's designed to be a sort of den, or small TV room, but it's hard to know for sure, and the layout size makes it rather awkward.  In fact, when we had our house on the market, one relator complained, "This room doesn't have a clearly established purpose."  The truth is, we've used this room for many purposes over the years, including a school room, but over the past year, it's become kind of a creative space/studio for me.  (And I love it.)  I've slowly been turning it into useful space, by making small, affordable changes here and there, such as purchasing an old wooden cupboard that houses all of my paints, tools, fabric and other creative items.  I also had my brother make me a desk, and that's been my favorite thing to date.  Until today. 
 Today, I completed this wall mounted wrapping station because did you know how much these babies cost if you actually buy them?!  They are crazy expensive.  My goal was to use materials I already had, and purchase the least amount of items to make this wall come together. (I spent about $20.00)
Since we had recently added bead board to our kitchen cupboards, there were a few odd sized chunks in my garage and one of them was the perfect size for this little project.  I painted Sherwin Williams "Fawn Brindle" all over the bead board.  It's a soft grey-brown color that's both clean and neutral. (If you don't happen to have a leftover piece of bead board hanging about your garage, you could also use a 1/4" plywood slab for this.  About $7.00 at Lowes.)
 For the frame, I used the wood trim that once adorned the back splash area, above my kitchen counters.  (Waste not, want not.)  Adrain cut it all up for me, and then I used liquid nails to put everything together, fitting things into place, like a puzzle.  (I love liquid nails.  The dowels were a Lowe's purchase, and cost about $1.50 each.  The brackets holding them were sold in a two pack for about $3.00 at Lowe's.)

I already had these adorable little buckets that hold my pencils and things, from a Pottery Barn splurge a few years ago.  We previously used them for homeschooling.  The hooks that hold them came from Ikea. 
There is something so relaxing about having a place for everything, after juggling chaos and awkward items that don't seem to fit into drawers and cupboards. 
I almost forgot to mention the little shelf to the left.  I was able to get that at Michaels with a 50% off coupon not too long ago, before I really had much of a plan for the rest of my items. 
 I was so happy to be able to use it!  Mainly, I'm thrilled to have a clutter free workspace again.  I'll be temporarily closing up my Etsy shop tomorrow, but will be reopening it around Sept 1st.  (I also have a wait list for custom orders and things like that going right now in case you know you want something.)

Doesn't organization feel good? It makes me feel like going through all the closets and tackling those next!

What have you organized lately? 

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Post in which every other sentence is a parenthesis. (Can't help it.)

I'm one of those people who secretly laugh when I see husbands and wives communicating via Facebook. (I also laugh at bumper stickers like the one I saw today that said, "I heart Nevernudes."  That has nothing to do with this post and if you didn't watch Arrested Development you won't get that.)

One time I read a wife telling her husband to "Please get off FB and give the kids a bath."  I laughed for a full five minutes over that one.  I also laugh when I see people (most of you I know and love) wishing your spouse (or child who doesn't actually have a Facebook account because they are two years old and can't read yet) happy birthdays, anniversaries or other such things publicly.  Yes.  I do laugh.  I'm ashamed.  I don't judge though, I just think it's funny/cute/funny.  And I laugh because I can't help myself. 

So today, I'm turning the tables on my own self, because when you point the finger, you have three pointing back at yourself. (I'm pointing all three at myself.) 

And in light of that, I'd like to publicly declare that my love for Adrain is not a stale marshmallow, contrary to what I said two nights ago when he asked me why I never give him massages. (This all began because Nurse Nicki got a massage table for a wedding present.)  That also made me laugh.  Just so we're clear.  Now, I feel like I've become one of you. (You know who you are.)  It's good to belong...  Please don't kick me out of the publicly-declaring-things club because I've laughed at you in the past.  I promise not to laugh at you ever again.  (I mean, I'm a blogger for heaven's sake.  I publicly declare nonsense with the best of them.  All the time!)

And because we are publicly declaring weird things... (or at least I am) this is what I swept up today (aka the grossest photo I've ever posted) because I own a 38 pound black monster named Lucy. (It's like a small rabbit.) I just needed to share that.  It felt appropriate somehow. 

Also.  I might still laugh at your "Reagan/Dukakis" bumper sticker.  (I'm sorry, I just feel it's best that I'm completely honest with you.)

The End.

Monday, July 25, 2011

If I show you this, you have to look surprised when I show you for real.

 I have really big plans for these pots.  Okay, not like earth-shatteringly big, but bigger than this.  Today I decided to update my photos for the "eat" napkins I sell on Etsy, and I couldn't help but use these little black chalkboard pots, because they were so stinkin' cute!! 
 And the thing is, I'm going to show you what I plan to do with these soon, but this is more or less a mock-up of  something close to that, so you have to promise me that  you'll let me post more photos of the thing I'm going to do, when I'm ready to do that thing.... which isn't this thing, exactly.  Savvy?  (And act all surprised, like you haven't seen them yet, okay?  Thanks.) 
 The sad part, is that I've actually got a few boxes of these two-pack chalkboard pots completed and ready to sell on Etsy, but I just decided to take the month of August off from Etsy, so I'll make you a deal.  If you want any of these, and you email me before the end of this week, (Saturday) at,  you can order them directly from me that way.  Otherwise, whatever I don't sell out of, will be listed on Etsy come September 1st.  (Or thereabouts.) They come in a pack of two, and have cute little twine ties around each top.  I have included two pieces of chalk, along with four sticks that have been hand stamped with the names of herbs; thyme, rosemary, basil, and mint so you can choose which you'd like to plant.  (Or plant something else, and use the opposite end of the stick.)  I'm selling each box set for $30.00 plus $10.00 for the shipping, for a grand total of $40.00.
 I've  scribbled little chalkboard numbers on mine.  And I planted thyme and lavender in them.  They turned out so sweet I've been thinking of tons of uses for them.  You could use them as place settings, and put people's names on the pot.  Oh! Or you could use the twine ties to attach one of the pieces of chalk and give them as a gift... tons of options. 

Now I just need to post a bunch of cute photos for myself.  I just have to.  Have I mentioned how much I love taking photographs?  Of anything?  The blogger in me takes over... 

Sunday, July 24, 2011

You're here, and I'm here, so I'll start talking...

I don't even know who I am anymore... I mean it.  I had the greatest day ever today, except I forgot my camera, (I know, right?!) and it's a shame because the entire day was sprinkled throughout with the following: My daughter, in her first ever, American Girl store, jumping up and down with the sheer bliss of the moment... My brother and sis (n-law) crashing our lunch date at PF Changs... school shopping with deals and fun galore... turning a corner at the mall and literally running into my brother and sis (n-law) again by accident...and treats at Red Mango.  When have you ever known me not to pack my camera?  I mean it?  When?  It's like I've become a different person all of a sudden. That said, I'm going to post random photos from our weekend when I actually had the camera in my hand. 

Some things I need to say and since you're here and I'm here, I'll say them to you.
 1) My little girl is growing up.  Way too soon, in fact.  I purchased several big girl items for her today and I don't think I'm ready.  My man and I locked eyes over one purchase in particular and then I think he went into denial.  Also, and this has nothing to do with what I just said, (when has that ever stopped me from saying it?) but I had to include this photo from early this morning... not one thing in life is sexier than a man doing dishes with his daughter.  Oh my word.  He is the only man in the world I'd do another six weeks of P90X with.  (Yes. We finally reached the half way mark. Heaven help me.)

2) I bought a big silk screening machine earlier this week for Etsy, and it's scaring the living daylights out of me.  My husband finds this funny.  Apparently I have a track record of not liking intimidating things, but warming up to them slowly over time.  Or so he says.  Whatever.  

3) I am going away for an overnight ALONE with my man this Friday night.  I really needed to share that since it's about all I can think about right now.  There will be BBQ pits, sunset walks along rocky shores, almond champagne, picnic time, ocean viewing, and possibly a kayak, if my man can convince me that we're not going to roll and then consequently drown and die.  I'm still holding out for a paddle boat instead.  Doesn't that seem like a safer choice?  You seldom hear about random couples drowning from paddle boat shipwrecks do you?  We'll see who wins.
 4) I will be temporarily closing my Etsy shop for the month of August only. (I will not be taking any more custom orders until September, but will have a wait list going if you want something added to it in the meantime.) It was a tough decision, as I've got a ton of ideas rolling around my brain, (when don't I?) but I had too much on my plate and something had to stop.  This will be the last week for July sales with all my remaining stock.  I will still be working on a bunch of fun things like those crates I showed a few posts back, along with a few other things for September, but I just need to breathe, and I know you guys totally get that.  I will also be spending this upcoming month working on getting myself organized.  Yahoo!
 5) Also... Alli, one of my BFF's is not moving afterall.  At the last minute (literally) they got a call that changed everything, and the heavens rejoiced.  (Or perhaps that was just me.)  This is me, tired from the weekend, but deliriously happy over this good news. 

What was your weekend full of?