Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Princess Room

Since this post is long, I thought a gratuitous princess shot might be in order to lure you in...
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Now... I was thrilled that this week's "Show Us Where You Live" was a children's room edition. Ella's room is still my favorite room in the house and I'd spend time in there over any other room, hands down. Little has changed in this room since Ella was a tiny baby. We've replaced the iron crib with a big girl bed, we ditched the changing table in favor of a kitchen, and we've added drapes to keep this little one from daydreaming instead of napping.

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My love affair with decorating started early and the fact that my mom should take over for Martha Stewart only helps those efforts tremendously. She and I worked hard the last half of my pregnancy to make the nursery of my dreams. My regular visitors have caught glimpses along the way, but this is the first full reveal. Sad right?

When I first found out I was pregnant and began to entertain thoughts of nurseries, I knew that I wanted it to be modern. For a girl, I had no intention of using pink. At all. Then I found out we were having an Ella. I went all pink and toile and about as far from modern as you can get. Those hormones really do a number on you!


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This is Ella's princess bed. I loved the upholstered beds in PBK, especially the linen striped one, but since I spent so much on the crib, I wanted a beautiful bed for a bargain. Enter Gran & Poppy. Poppy is a master carpenter {you'll see more on that in a minute} and he whipped this little platform bed up in a weekend and my crafty mom covered it with pink and white ticking fabric and my lovely friend Ellen monogrammed it for me. It turned out exactly as I had imagined. Just before I ordered a pink and white striped quilt from PBK, I ran in Homegoods and found this one for $29. Score! I could live without the netting, but Ella fell in love with it and it does make her bed more "princessy". Anything I can do to keep from having Cinderella sheets is fine with me!


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This is Ella's favorite part of the room, her kitchen. The kitchen itself was from Santa, the table was an antique store find, the dark highchair was mine as a child and the green one was a gift from my aunt. We recently added the candelier to make it look more like a "room."



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These are a feat of masterful carpentry. Like I mentioned last Friday, my house has no storage. The only closet in this room is a mere 18 inches deep and we both know babies and toddlers come with lots of gear. Poppy added these built-ins and made them the same depth as the existing closet for a wall of storage.



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The left half contains clothes, shoes and linens and you'll notice the missing doors from the entertainment center I mentioned in my living room post. We hinged them, added toile fabric to the glass and voila, a working wardrobe!



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The right half is a bookcase holding girly trinkets, dolls, baby books and blankets. The framed pieces are antique paper dolls my mom gave me long before I had a baby girl. The chair has been here since this was a nursery. We used to spend our nights rocking and singing here, now we read stories and put on our clothes from this perch. The table is from Walmart and the lamp is from Target with added ball fringe around the shade. My mom made the valances before Ella was born and I had white sheers behind them. I made the drapes before Christmas and added them for privacy and warmth in the winter, now we like them so much we haven't made the switch back to sheers.



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This is a bookcase I saw on-line, but I didn't like the finishes. Instead, I had that crafty carpenter whip it up for her second Christmas. My mom made the pockets and I bought the baskets at Homegoods. The shelf above displays my first shoes, my ballet slippers, her announcement photograph and the bonnet she wore home from the hospital.



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This is a dollhouse bookcase that Poppy made for my little sister when we were young. I'm sure I'll have to give it back once she starts making babies, but for now it holds the remainder of our toys and books. Below are three canvases I painted for her room and hung above her bed {want one? Email me please!}.



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I hope you enjoyed the look around and that you'll come back again soon!


Summer Is Here

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Tonight we grilled out at Garan & Poppy's and I watched my girls swim. Both of them.

Weekend List

  • Friday we ate Mexican for dinner, bought some books at BAM and took a stroll around Wal-Mart because Ella wanted to go to another store. We didn't buy anything there.
  • Saturday we did the lunch date with Ali. You saw that here.
  • Then we went to Ross and bought really big throw pillows for $5.99, bought a yard of fabric at Hancock for another project, got Ella a tiny table from Homegoods and a pedestal table from Wal-Mart (you can see both of those in Friday's post).
  • K & Cory came over for dinner Saturday night. We had lasagna, salad and yummy bread and watched Seven Pounds. Excellent movie, I highly recommend it.
  • Sunday morning I got us ready for church and Ella had a major belly-related come apart. It was better not to subject the general population to her drama, so we put our pjs back on and relaxed. My parents had to cover the nursery and KCory had to do children's church. Whew.
  • Sunday night she recovered well enough to spend some time with Nana while the big kids ate cheesy fries at Wings and watched Terminator Salvation. Another good movie.
  • Monday morning I sewed for two hours before Ella woke up. This pictures shows my other little helper.

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  • Around lunch, we loaded up the car and headed to Garan & Poppy's to celebrate Memorial Day.
  • We ate hamburgers, roasted potatoes, rotel dip, peanut butter brownies... can you tell everybody brings what they want and it's kind of a conglomeration?
  • The water was like ice water, but that didn't stop this little one.

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  • She jumped in the water a lot and eventually went under!

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  • She snuggled a lot with her daddy.

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  • She even played in the rain, when it came.

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  • Eventually we came home, took a two hour nap and rode to Subway.
  • We sang Boom, Boom, Pow all the way home.
  • Then she went to bed and Josh & I stayed up way too late watching The Bachelorette, Here Come the Newlyweds and Jon & Kate ruin their marriage. Thank you DVR.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Missing you

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I'm really missing this girl right now. When I went to pick her up this afternoon she was crying because she wanted to go to church with Garan. Luckily, I bought her a cute dress and sandals at Target today. I fed and dressed her while Garan and Poppy got ready.

It was really fine because I stayed up much too late on Monday watching Jon & Kate fall apart and last night I was up late painting. I came home, finished up a design job, taught myself how to invoice using PayPal, cleaned up a bit and did some laundry.

Then she called me from the car. "Can I stay with Garan tonight? There are blue 'jamas at Garan's. I don't want to come home." How can I resist an otherwise quiet evening alone? Then I asked if she would miss me. She said, "No, and I don't want to come home yet." Ouch. When I told her that I'd really miss her and she was supposed to sleep with me tonight, she said, "It's okay. I'll be back. I'll come see you in jus' a minute." Obviously, she has no sense of time.

So... I'm preposting a weekend update for tomorrow and hitting the sheets. This mama is getting some much needed beauty sleep.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Ali-U Are So Much Fun

My first year of college I met Ali. It has been eleven years since we moved into the dorm with two other girls we couldn't have had less in common with. We didn't know each other before school started and that made it so exciting. We had a four bedroom, two bath dorm room with a decent sized living area. Of course, Ali and I were on opposite sides of the suite, but that didn't stop us from spending every waking minute together. Of our other two girls, one spent 23 of every 24 hours in her room and the other spent 23 of every 24 hours asleep. We had lots of time to ourselves and drove the other two crazy.

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If you know me IRL then you know I'm loud and I never shut up. Well, so is Ali. One of my favorite memories is that although our doors were 20 feet from one another we would call each other and say, "Hey. What are you doing? Can you unlock your door so I can come in?" That always made me laugh. Ali got me through the first year of life on my own. She laughed at me when I wrecked my mom's car in the driveway after our first liberated spring break. She danced with me into the wee hours of the night despite the fact that I have NO rhythm. She watched countless hours of Friends and Dawson's Creek along my side and sang Wide Open Spaces at the top of her lungs while we rode around in Cricket. Wow, we had a good time.



If you read my blog at all, then you'll know that Ali comments almost everyday. Despite the fact that we rarely see each other, we actually talk via email quite often. Yesterday the stars aligned and we managed to squeeze in a long lunch. Much to Ella's delight, Ali suggested Chipotle and we ate lots of chips and salsa. It took Ella awhile to warm up, but she had a good time and Ali was so sweet with her. Thanks, Ali, for spending the morning with us, we'll have to do it again in about 6 years!!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Room We Live In

Well, since I missed out on the first few week's of Kelly's challenge, I'm going to use the weekend to catch up. I'm skipping the guest room because we don't have one, I'll offer up the kitchen later with a caveat, but today I'm sharing the living room.

In our house all of the rooms {with the exception of the kitchen and bathroom} are exactly the same size. Our bedrooms, play room, living room, dining room AND laundry. It is similar to a Craftsman four-square only it's a six. When you walk in our front door you walk directly into the living room with our dining room being in the very center of the house.

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Above is a picture looking from our dining room to the front door. You'll see our "entertainment center" on the left and the majority of our seating on the right. And you'll notice that cute new rug!

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This is a photo of the main seating area. We bought our leather furniture several years ago at Dogtown, but it is practically the only "nice" furniture we've ever bought. Sometimes it looks red and sometimes it looks purple. Either way, I love the way it contrasts with the pumpkin colored walls. You can also see from this photo that our house has lots of built-in shelves that we love. Some are original to the house {these are} and some we've added along the way. The lamps are from Pier 1 and the two larger framed pieces of art are intaglio prints from fellow art students when I was in college.

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Here is a sneak peak of that console table behind the couch. It's really two filing cabinets {since we lack storage} with a long piece of glass. Ella loves to put her magnets here, too.

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Above is one of my favorite pieces of furniture, our entertainment center. These are the other two cabinets from the elementary science lab. Originally, both pieces had doors. You'll see what happened to the other two later in the week. We've used these to house electronics, etc. since we first got married. I'm guessing one day we'll buy a bonafide piece of furniture, but I can't imagine not having this piece! We use the piece on the right to display things we love and the piece on the left corrals our books, movies and toys as well as our electronic components.

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This little vignette is to the left of our front door and the one below is to the right. Nobody ever sits in this chair, but Ella & I do occupy the little table a lot. We usually eat dinner here during the week when SD is travelling. The photograph above the table was taken by my uber-talented sister K {you should visit her today, she profiled her ADORABLE living room}. The photo was taken right ever we found out about Ella. I'm holding the sonogram picture and SD is in the background. This was taken as a college photography project and she gave it to us framed at my baby shower. Knowing we worked so hard to get that sweet little girl going, makes this photograph so special!

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Well, I hope you enjoyed the tour. I love this room and all of the little things in it! I'll be back later in the week with princess posts and some more house posts, too. Have a great holiday!

**And just in case you're new around here. All of the throw pillows have been recovered with napkins and placemats from World Market. SD stands for "Sweet Daddy", also known as my husband, Josh. K is my sister, Kamin. Thanks for stopping by**

Friday, May 22, 2009

Coming for dinner?

I decided to play along with Kelly's party this week and show off my dining room. We live in an 86 year old rock cottage, which we love. The day we brought our daughter home we grew out of this house, despite it's three bedrooms, because in 1923 they didn't think to build closets. Our house has no hallways or wasted space, but where it is overflowing with character and spacious rooms, it is definitely lacking in storage space. To combat that problem, all of our rooms do some "double duty" and we have to have lots of interesting ways to display and store things.

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Above is the entrance to our dining room from the living room. There is a large arch between the two rooms and we treat them as one. You can see one of the original light fixtures that I love hanging in the room. We shortened the chain since our dining table isn't in the middle of the room and were tired of "avoiding" the light. You can also see the table cloth I made last night as well how great the new rug looks in this room!

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This is the view of the bookcases behind our dining table. The table was my grandmother's and the chairs were my great grandmother's. I painted them black to match and the bookcases were from Speigel a hundred years ago. I love using them to display dishes, books, etc. and they get "redecorated" frequently.

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Across from the dining table is our mini-office area. I bought an old sewing maching base and a piece of glass at a salvage shop and the cheap shelving unit was painted black and mounted on our wall. Since the walls are solid rock/concrete, we don't have to worry about them going anywhere. On top of that desk is my new pride and joy. Pretty, isn't she? I really needed a new computer!



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To the right of our kitchen door is a cabinet that once lived as a lab cabinet in the biology department of our elementary school. Gran rescued them for me and we use them for storage. This one acts as a coat/purse closet while the other two pieces are used at bookcases and an entertainment center in our living room.


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To the left of our kitchen door is this buffet, which used to be the dresser in SD's childhood bedroom. We repurposed it with a coat of black lacquer and new drawer pulls. Now the top corrals our books, magazines, keys and sunglasses and the cabinets hold linens, tablecloths, silverware and some of SD's paperwork.

Well... that's it. The color is off on these a little, the color is kind of a spicy pumpkin color and it was a very happy accident. I'm convinced we'll use it again if and when we ever move. My house is a hodgepodge of pieces swiped from relatives and picked up at antique and salvage stores, but I love the ecclectic, thrown together look. I hope you enjoyed the visit!


Thursday, May 21, 2009

Commando

Today, like yesterday, we went to the park on our way home. The sky was grey and I was afraid it would split wide open at any moment. Since I promised I would take her and it wasn't actually raining yet, I decided to give it a go.

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This is Ella's opinion of the swing. The BABY swing.

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But she's fine with the ginormous rock wall...

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and the two-story slide.

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Here she is coming down that slide.

Have you wondered yet why this post is called commando?

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Well, because this cute little fanny landed squarely in a puddle at the end of the slide...

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and we had to ride some sans undies!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

What I Made

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Guess what I did tonight? I went to Hancock and bought 12 yards of nubby muslin. I made the little table cloth right the first time, but the big one was too small and I had to rip it all apart and start over. That's why it is 11:20 and I'm not asleep yet.

In between all of that, I made dinner, watched American Idol with Ella, **side note -- she was ECSTATIC when Jason Mraz came out singing I'm Yours -- she kept saying "Mom, that's my new song!" -- so cute** and took the dog out about sixteen-hundred times.

I really wanted to read some more of my book tonight, but it isn't looking good. Instead I think I'll read the back of my eyelids and think about praying for SD tomorrow. Don't tell him, okay?

Water Baby

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While I should have been doing something industrious last night... like working in the yard, doing laundry, or vaccuuming, Ella & I ordered a pizza, watched American Idol and played in the bathtub. I was in bed by 8:30 reading this and asleep by 9. I wish I could pull that off everyday.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

See?

Just in case you didn't believe me when I said I didn't have anything to say. Here's a look into an average evening in the princess household.

boring 012 I brought home Chipotle, her favorite meal

boring 011 We had a picnic

boring 017 Beemer tried to share

boring 018 So Ella took the pico for herself

boring 022 She stole my spot on the couch and thought it was really funny

boring 026 We finally watched Survivor... YEAH JT! (Ella took this one)

boring 027 Read a few stories

boring 029 Got a sweet surprise

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And took up our usual spot on the couch where Ella hoards her favorite belongings