Sunday, February 27, 2011

A Life List

I was inspired by one of my friends in college, Laura, to start a life list. She made one called "30 Before 30". I decided to just write a bunch things down that I'd like to do in my lifetime. Although, I'm sure most of them could be accomplished within the next 5 years. I wrote them all to the side of blog so we could all follow along and I'll blog about each one I accomplish, starting with...

#4. Go to Maine
For some reason I have always wanted to visit Maine. I'm not sure why. Maybe it's because it's really far way from Oklahoma. Or because of the beautiful fall spectacle. Or because I imagined it to have a quintessential small town feel. My husband and I decided to go to Maine for our honeymoon 3.5 years ago. It was perfect. We went a few weeks after our wedding to take advantage of the full fall colors. They did not disappoint. Although the locals still said that the real colors would come in about 3-4 weeks.

The trip was everything I thought it was going to be. Beautiful, chilly, quaint, and perfect. The best quote from the trip was a local telling us that the only people that visit Bar Harbor Maine are "Newlyweds and Nearly deads!!"

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Swimsuit

I thought I would share the new swimsuit I purchased from Lands End Canvas. I have never bought anything from Lands End or their new line of Canvas stuff until recently. BowerPower did a post about her spring wardrobe and it featured a lot from this line. I was intrigued by some of the things that they had and I really liked the sale prices too. This whole suit cost be $24.oo and it fits perfectly!

I also got these cute 5" Chino Shorts. I thought because having some nice shorts to dress up or down would be useful. Sadly, I had to return them. I was afraid it might happen, but you can clearly see all the pockets and the zipper flap. They are clearly see through white shorts. And also the 5" length was a bit awkward. It wasn't too long, but I though the 3" ones would be too short.
Anyway, I guess I'm still on the hunt for some nice shorts. I'm just praying my capris still fit from last summer otherwise I'll be hitting the shops, and sometimes that's just not fun.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Bedroom Dilemma

For about a year or so, I've wanted to get a new duvet cover and spruce up our master bedroom. It has no style right now, except beige and boring. We want to change it to something with more of a classic and sophisticated feel.

With our bathroom remodel we want to do white cabinets with brushed nickel fixtures. This will work well with the smokey blue I have wanted to paint our room. This will also give our room a more light and airy feel.

However, I have recently figured out that they better way to go about changing our rooms decor is to pick out our new duvet first.

This is a major challenge.

I have looked and looked constantly for a duvet that doesn't break my bank, has just the right pattern, and just the right color.

So far, I have these options.

Option 1: This is from pillowsandthrows.com. I love the graphic pattern because it's really different. But I'm worried it's probably too edgy for our tastes and look of our home. Also, the plum color is really cool and would work well with a smokey blue wall.

Option 2: This is from West Elm. Again, I like the pattern because it is stylized and different. However, the gray is a little boring and cold. I also was looking for an all-over pattern.

Option 3: I was drawn to this because of the colors. Cool blues, dark browns, and cream. I will compliment our dark furniture and will accommodate different shades of blue accents. It's also reversible which is a plus.

Option 4: This is from Westelm. I really like it because of the stylized flowers and the different colors of blue, green, and yellow which will make bringing in accessories and art that much more flexible. It is also bright, cheery, and modern. However, I wish that it didn't have so much white because that will yellow over time.

Option 5: This is a nice blue, but is it too much blue? I'm not sure, however, the right orange accents like pillows, might make it looks cool. It is light and airy and has a slight pattern. But it reads like a solid to me and I was really look for a bigger pattern.


Option 6: This is my ultimate favorite. It's reversible. Has a large, sophisticated pattern (that I've been looking for!) and is just perfect. Except for one thing...it's green. I actually love the green color but I've been set on painting my room a smokey blue and this would clash with the overall design. I could paint our room a light tan, or light yellow and go with dark finishes. I'm torn, because I absolutely love this pattern, but I'd have to change my whole design plan.

Option 7: This is my other favorite. The pattern is not quite as awesome as the other, but it is the overall pattern I was trying to achieve. The accent color they used for the pillows, even though it is more of a blue green, allows me to visualize how this could look in a smokey blue room. I think it would look pretty cool and grown-up. Hence, with this option, we could still go with our original design plan.

Option 8: This is the one Stephen was drawn too. I think it was because of the color, and the geometric design. The geometric design is not doing it for me, I think it's predictable and boring. However, this is reversible and I do like the underside because it looks like a nice swirly pattern. I wish it wasn't so brown though, something brighter would be better.

So, as you can see, I have my work cut out for me. I still need to get a few prices for some of these duvets. A few of them are labeled as a package deals which include the duvet cover, the duvet insert, and two pillows, or even an accent pillow that totals almost $460!!!! That's a bit expensive even if you do get a lot of things. But, we already have a duvet insert, so I don't need another one.

Which one do you like best? Leave a comment!





Thursday, February 10, 2011

Snowmageddon Part I and II

Can you believe that the weather people actually called the snow storm last week Snowmageddon? Please.

Anyway, here is what my house looked like on February 1st.
How much snow: 12"
Drifts: 3'
Length of time schools were closed: 4 days!

This is what my house looked like February 9th.
How much snow: 7"
Drifts: 2.5'-3'
Length of time school was closed: 2 days (lets hope)
(taken around 9am after I had shoveled half the driveway)

(taken after the nice man plowed our street)




Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Grateful and a Good Samaritian

Why am a I grateful?

*random thought*

I looked at that word and thought "wait, do you spell if greatful? Because grateful didn't look right, but neither does greatful.

*end random thought*

Now onto why I am grateful. When we moved into this house and then started thinking about what renovation projects we wanted to do, we noticed that the texture job in the master bathroom looked like cake frosting. Cake frosting is actually good, but as a wall texture it is gross and gloppy.
We went back and forth with the idea of finding a way to remove it or just dealing with it. To remove it we thought we could sand it down, but that would yield a lot of dust. We thought about tearing out all the drywall and just replacing it. But then that was escalating the project to a whole 'nother level that we didn't want to go. Then one day a long time ago, we took off one of the outlet covers and noticed some paper, and the color red. Well!

At first I thought "How stupid are they to wallpaper something, then paint over it, then texture over that!?"

And who would use this wallpaper anyway!!!

Perhaps you've figured it out by now, but that texture came off fairly easily because of the wallpaper. Now, I'm really grateful they textured over it!

For the most part, it came off in good sized chunks. Some were about 4 times the size of the one in the picture!


Here are the before pictures of our sink area.
And here are the afters. You may have noticed that I didn't take off the texture on the soffit. That's because we're going to take it out completely. I also didn't take the texture off on the wall with the mirror because I was doing this alone and I'm betting that mirror weighs a lot. Also, we're keeping the mirror so I didn't want to risk shattering it to pieces.



Now for the final touches to get the walls ready for new texture and paint, I have to steam the rest of the paper backing off and clean up all the edges where the texture/wallpaper didn't quite come off. And unfortunately, there are three small areas, like the one just to the right of the door near the mirror (for some reason I didn't find wallpaper there so thetexture really doesn't want to come off) and two areas near the baseboard in the shower area where the texture was being stubborn and didn't quite come off, that I have to deal with.

I'll post our paint color options next time, but for now, check out this video I took of some man on our street graciously plowing people's driveways and half of our cul-de-sac.


video


video

Yeah, I turned the camera off right before he dumped the snow because I realized he was turning straight towards my window and I was taping this through my open blinds and I was afraid he might see me and and then I'd get caught taping him doing a nice thing for our street of neighbors and I would feel weird.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

This is really hard...

I've been unemployed for quite some time. They do stories on the news about people that have been unemployed for months and years and mention how it can be really depressing. It really can be.

1. At first, it's great. Sleeping in. Watching Ellen at 9am. Or Tivo it and watch it at 2pm when all that is on TV is soap operas and infomercials. Or maybe you woke up at 10 and missed it. Sometimes you wake up at 8 and are able to get a lot of things done that day. But then time passes and you don't want to sleep in, but you do anyway just so you don't have to be alone and bored for the whole day. Now you only have half a day to work with. And that's alright. My body is now used to waking up at 7:45. I feel guilty that I don't spend the morning with Stephen. I don't know why I can't make myself get out of bed...for him.

2. In the beginning I was so motivated to do little craft projects, clean the house, get the laundry done. It was awesome being productive because I had the whole day to do it. But then time passes and it is very hard to find the motivation to do any of it. It can take me 4 days to do laundry when it used to take 1.

3. I've almost lost my desire to cook new things. I feel guilty that even though I'm home all day, I still can't have dinner ready for when Stephen gets home. What's wrong with me?

4. Because of this blizzard we had last week, people all over the internet were talking about how they had major cabin fever after 3 days. I didn't know what to think about it. Because I haven't been working for quite some time, I'll go days without leaving the house. I get cabin fever all the time. Now that's probably my own fault. But, when you aren't making an income and you know money is tight, why go somewhere and be tempted to spend money? It was hard to justify the occasional mocha frappe. But I will say, I did leave the house. For my sanity. I'd go to the park, the library, visit Stephen for lunch. Everyone has their own perspective, I guess.

5. Spending the day at home, I pretty much felt like I vegged all day. Even if I did get some things done. It's quiet, sometimes lonely, and boring. So when Stephen gets home, I immediately want to talk to him, see how his day was, do something together, anything for some interaction. But I forget sometimes that he might want to veg for awhile. Have some down time. It's been hard to find that middle ground.

6. Then you always have that underlying fact that you need to look for a job. Trust me, I've applied for lots of things. Lots of different things. But you begin to feel like you aren't good enough. You don't have the skills, the experience, the knowledge. No one calls you back. You're worthless.

7. And that's depressing.

8. To feel like you haven't wasted a year and a half of your life is hard. To feel like you aren't good at anything is hard. To be alone all day is hard. To have some days go by where you don't talk to anyone is hard. To be reminded at times by terrible memories as to how you became unemployed in the first place is really hard. To forget about those and move on is hard. To know that God has a plan for me during this trying time is even hard. The guilt is hard.

9. It's hard to find yourself. What do you want to do for a career?...I don't know. That's scary.

10. Anyway. Here's what I've come to terms with. I want to be happy and I know that part of being happy is just by doing something. Something that will get me out of the house and be productive. Something that will make me feel like I am contributing to our financial peace and the future we want to have. I'm not looking for a climb the ladder corporate career. I just want to leave my house everyday and go to work. Then come back and be motivated to do the things I need to do at home.

11. Now...I might have that chance. I was offered a job to work at a call center for HP for InsureOklahoma. Not a huge call center, just like 25 people. And it's not even really a call center like most people would think of one. I would be helping people enroll in the insurance program and doing some paperwork. Easy. I hope. It's not anything glamorous, and that's okay with. I have a friend that works for HP so that will be really nice to see her at work. Granted I still have to have a phone interview with the HR department of HP and then be sent an official offer even though the manager in OKC already wants me. Honestly, he'd probably just take a warm body, but I had a pretty good interview and I have a degree so there.

12. Plus, I'm worth something. I'm so better than all of this emotional crap I've had to go through over the past year or so. I can't wait for me to be working again and then in a few years can honestly have put all of this behind me.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Cold

Our furnace has shut off twice since this winter storm plowed through Oklahoma. It happened Tuesday evening while we were watching tv. We just noticed that it was quite chilly in the house, even with a fire going. We didn't think anything of it for awhile, just thought that it was cold because it was like 3 degrees outside. Then we thought about it and it occurred to us that we hadn't heard the heater turn on in awhile. Sure enough it was about 65 degrees in the house. That's not anything too drastic, but in the winter, it's pretty cold.

We actually had to turn the thermostat off for awhile and then turn it back on. After a few minutes it was working again.

But it happened again this morning. We woke up and were super cold. It was hard to get out of bed. Stephen checked the thermostat and it said 61. Brrr! It's working again now, but our poor furnace just can't keep up with these cold temps. Please, please, please, don't break on us this winter. That would be really bad.