Tuesday, March 30, 2010

I'm Crushing On: Sales, J. Crew, & Spring

I'm crushing on the sale at J. Crew.  Although I heart the J.Crew style with a serious passion, I normally only web or window shop due to the high quality prices.  Most times I try to mimic the style with bargain finds. Today, I'm enjoying window shopping the sites of Sale and  a bonus of an extra 30% off!  (make sure to use the code!)  There are some pretty intoxicating deals on their sale page right now, even items that would be great for the Spring that has recently sprung. 

If you're lucky enough to enjoy their newly arrived items, their new spring arrivals are fabulous!

Below are just a FEW of my finds that I would love to covet in my closet!

Asymmetrical Ruffle Tee for $14.99 (originally $32.50)

Wool harbor peacoat with Thinsulate® for $89.99 (originally $240.00!)

Ruffled henley tank for $24.99 (originally $36.50) My FAVE!

Ultra-knit weekend skirt for $24.50 (originally $34.50)

Dogwood cocktail ring for $19.99 (originally $65.00!) Comes in black or gold depending on the size.

Twisted treasure necklace for $29.99 (originally $115.00!)

Hope you are able to enjoy the sale! 

Today I am sporting an $8 brown dress from Target that was originally $40.  I splurged on it this past weekend! It's sleeveless, so an already oldie but goodie white cardgian worn over the dress combined with heels and a pair of dangly gold and turquoise earrings is a good way to welcome the 70 degree weather today. 

Enjoy a good sale item and sport it this spring.

Keep on Keepin on.

Friday, March 26, 2010

I Think It's Time to Play

It has been a long week over here.  I'm sure it has been a longer week for other's.  So, I hope you have some sunshine this weekend. 

Kick up your feet.

Have a cup of coffee...


glass of wine...

or whatever fits your fancy.

Play a game.  Preferably a board game or backyard game.

Play with your dogs. 

Play with your kids.


It's probably needed.

Sparky and I are going to try to do the same.

Keep on Keepin on.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

A Friendship Note

Today, my thoughts are with one of my long time closest girlfriends. We have known each other since the 5th grade when I moved to these flat plains from sunny Southern California. We have shared clothes, laughed, cried, caused mischief, been victims of mischief, had crushes on the same boys, rode to school together (either from parents toting us there or finally when she got a car of her own), studied together, had different extracurricular activities, attended different colleges, attempted to be torn apart by others, drifted apart at times and always remained close friends. After 17 years of being friends, I had the pleasure of being in her wedding last year and watching her grow even more into a young beautiful woman.

This past Sunday, I was sorting through some very old papers. I was purging all my papers and attempting to organize. At the very bottom of one of my files was a random folded up piece of paper. It was folded strategically into a square and I instantly knew that this paper was an oldie but a goodie. It was a note. It was not just some note, but it was a note this friend had written to me in the 8th grade. You know the kind... “Hey, how are you? I’m good. Just bored. Did you see so and so today? He looks sooooooooooooooo cute. This class is soooooooooooo boring. I can’t wait until this weekend. TTYL.” All written in colorful red ink with flowers and squiggles bordering the sheet of young adolescent gossip. I’m sure we all wrote notes to our friends in school and passed them to each other either in class or passing in the hallways. Don’t deny it.

I was so giddy to find this random note from 15 years ago. At that moment it just made me so happy and made me think I needed to call my friend and check on her.

That was Sunday evening. On Tuesday evening, this friend called me with sad news. Her father passed away Monday evening. It was unexpected but not. He had been declining in health for a few years but I had not had an update in a few months.

So, today, tomorrow, and always, my thoughts are with my long time friend and her family. Tomorrow we will honor her father and I will have another chance to see my friend grow even more into a young beautiful woman.

Keep in touch. Hold on to those worth holding on to. Be there for each other no matter the distance or time. Sometimes the little things, even small folded up little notes, will pop up and remind you of the simplicity and timelessness of a good friendship.

Keep on Keepin on.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

I'm Crushing On: Pillows

I have a bit of an obsession with pillows, among other things such as ruffles, clean sheets, polka dots, the colors white, ivory, grey, brown & purple, boots, dainty dresses, the word "dainty"...just to name a very small few.  But I digress...as usual. 


I am crushing on pillows today.  My pillow obsession is the direct result of my current obsession of dreaming about a nice new, affordable and dog-friendly sectional sofa.  Easy, right?  ...Nope.  Maybe when Sparky and I get married we might be able to pull together enough gifts cards for this non-existent perfect sectional sofa that all four dogs could cuddle on with us without it getting disgusting.  But I'm even doubtful it can happen then too.  boo.  For now, the dogs combined with fabric sofa is off limits.  double boo.

Anyway, I hate our current sofa but I guess it will have to do.  The color is all wrong and the style defintiely doesn't match us or anything in our home.  It is our huge embarrassing eye sore in my opinion.  If you saw it, you'd probably totally agree and cry with me.  I can't even find a white slipcover to fit it that could make it easy on the eyes for now...that's how bad it is!  So, I've been obsessing over pillows this past year hoping that if I cover the sofa with a ton of wonderful pillows that it will make it all better.  But, I have to consider that the pillows will have to match any future perfect sofa that will hopefully come into our life.  I think I will have to break down and ask the cliche seamstress Asian mother to help me make a slip cover to help ease my ugly sofa woes.

But, until then, enjoy my pillow picks for today.

The Love Heart Pillow by Alexander Girard from UO for $38.  You've probably seen this around...it's pretty popular for obvioius reasons.    I heart it a lot.

The Hand and Dove Pillow by Alexander Girard from UO for $38

And my personal fave that I might actually splurge on (and possibly two!) is The Ruffle Strip Pillow from UO for $28!!  Are you surprised?  It's white and has ruffles.  Of course I love it!

And just because I have a crush on sitting on the floor to be closer to my dogs, I'm throwing in this lovely Patchwork Floor Cushion from UO for $68

Although the idea sounds great, I would hate to have this lovely get icky from the dogs, so I would actually love to use two of these pillows as big pillows on my sofa with the smaller pillows in front. 

I can imagine and obsess of all the loveliness of a huge comfy sectional with all these pillows thrown together.  How great it would truly be!!!

Keep on Keepin on.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Rush, Rush it Good

A couple of weeks ago, you may or may not remember me mentioning Sparky and I were both battling sinus infections; and that we had spent most of that particular weekend on the couch, under blankets, and enjoying some tv...which is kind of uncommon for us to not be out and about even when it's blizzard like snow outside.  I had even used a sick day on that Monday because I was still feeling icky.

That particular Saturday, I had woken up feeling great.  The sun was out and the scheduled forecast was sunny with highs in the mid 60's.  It was going to be a beautiful day.  It was a little windy but that's pretty normal for these parts.

Since Sparky races bicycles, one of the training methods he enjoys is referred to as "motor pacing".  We have a little Honda scooter that strongly resembles a little European moped.  I HEART it with a passion!  It's soo stinking cute!  I wish I had pic of it to share with you right now, but I don't!  Arg!

Anyway, on this beautiful Saturday, I agreed to motor pace Sparky.  I would drive the scooter while he drafted closely behind on his bicycle.  We did this motor pace out in the country with few cars around and it lasted about 2 hrs.

As soon as I returned home, I started to feel sick.  I couldn't get warm.  I had the shaking chills.  My whole body started to ache.  I had a horrible headache.  I started to cough.  I started to get a stuffy nose and my nose was definitely dripping more than it normally does.  The only thing that helped was sleep.  Even a hot shower didn't help the aches and pains go away.  I was convinced I had caught a cold or even worse...the flu.

I woke up the next morning still feeling very weak.  I didn't have the shaking chills like the day and night before, but I was still unable to get really comfortable.  All the other symptoms persisted throughout the day and I started to develop a sinus infection.

Monday I decided to stay home from work.  I still felt groggy, weak,  and achy.  My sinus infection was definitely worse.  Drainage was drastic and GROSS.

I'm not much of a doctor visiting kind of person.  I'm not much of a medicine taker.  Rather than go to my family doctor, I decided to try something different.  I decided to make an appt. with Sparky's allergist.  Since my symptoms instantly started after being outside, and putting together the last couple years of reactions to being outside for extended periods of time, I started to think that maybe I've developed small allergies over the past few years.

So, last week, I finally got to see the Allergist.  The moment of truth, am I or am I not allergic to anything?  If you have never been to an allergist (as I had never been), it's definitely an interesting experience.  First, I laid down on my stomach while they stuck my upper back with rows of different things (diluted versions) that people can be commonly allergic.  You lay there for about 15 minutes to see how you react/if you welp up in this areas.  Luckily, on my back side, I was not allergic to any of those things.  I think on my back, the focus was on foods and stuff.

Next, was my arms.  On each arm, they stick you with two rows going down with about 5 or 6 things that are common, especially in this area of the US, that people are commonly allergic.  These mostly included trees, dust mites, cats, dogs, etc.  Again, they wait about 15 minutes to see how you react and if you welp up in this particular areas.  As I sat there and kept looking at my arms, I kept thinking to myself that I'm probably not allergic to anything and that I should have just gone to my regular family doctor for the sinus infection.  I kept thinking I'm probably one of those paranoid idiots!

15 minutes are up.  The Dr. reads off the sizes of my welps to the nurse and I'm thinking, "eh, no big deal."...

Dr:  "Well you tested, positive."

me:  "What?"

Apparently, I am allergic to few things!  Mostly trees and grass.  Go figure.  I am definitely allergic to about 8 trees, Johnson grass, ragweed (very common), and something else that I at can't remember right now.  There was something at every season of the year that will bloom, including winter, that I'm allergic.  Geez.  All the other other things, including dogs and cats, I am borderline allergic!  I have four dogs!  Oh, dear.  Ok, so I am thinking I will probably have to start taking benadryl or claritin or something.  great. 


They want me start taking shots.


Did I mention I hate shots?

Within a couple of hours, I became one of those people that's allergic to their surroundings.  blah.

So, I sucked it up and decided to go through with it.  I started to think about all those days I would like to jog outside, ride my bike, drive the scotter, or even just drive around with Sparky and how miserable I would be afterward!  It all makes perfect sense.  In the past, I just never thought it was that serious and just dealt with it.

no mas.

Today, as I type to you, I am going through what they call "Rush".   I got here at 8am and have been receiving a shot in each arm every 30 minutes.  They are on it!  After my second round of shots, my eyes started to get pretty itchy and watery and I've had a pretty tight heahache all morning.  They had me take an extra anti-histamine just in case since I was already reacting to the second shot and the shots only get a little bit stronger each 30 minutes.  There are a couple of shots that I have to wait an hour in between.  Plus, I have my handy Epi-pen on hand!  Kind of scary.  The whole process will probably last until about 4pm.  I have my handy computer and a couple of books (Have a Little Faith by Mitch Albom and Molokai by Alan Brennert) to keep me occupied.  Thank goodness.

Sparky is going to bring me lunch so I'm pretty excited about that.  It's the little things that make the day go by so quickly.

So, enjoy some random shots with my photo booth in my allergy confines!

lovely background, right?

camera one, camera two, camera one, camera two. (name that movie)

I amaze myself at my ability to entertain myself.  I'm sure the nurses think I'm crazy.  Oh well, I can blame it on the shots, right?

Tick tock tick tock

I'm daydreaming of enjoying the beauty of this life without itchy read eyes, sneezing, coughing, running noses, fevers, aching, and headaches.  ahhhhh.  And riding my scooter!!!

So, when this day is over, I have to return for a shot once a week for an hour and a half for 16 weeks.  After that, once a month.  It's all worth it right?

Have you had a similar experience?  Have you gone through "Rush" or have severe allergies?  Share with me.  I've got the time to listen.  ha!

(I'd like to note that the one thing I am definitely NOT allergic to is dust mites.  Go figure.  Most people are at least sensitive to or kind of allergic to dust mites.  Not me.  So, I can clean the house all day but I can't go outside!  ha!  I just have to laugh at the irony of that fact!)

Keep on keepin on.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Frame It, Yo

Probably like most of you, I have a bit of an obsession with picture frames.  I love me some picture frames.  And, probably like most of you, I am baffled sometimes at the price of frames!  They get super expensive at some places... and don't even bring up trying to get your picture matted with the frame...woo wee.  Cha-Ching. 

So, over the past few months, I've been on kind of a frame finding extravaganza.  Ok.  Maybe not so much of an extravaganza as I happened upon some good deals and it spurred by picture frame hoarding disease. 

With the start of the writing room going very well and progress going even better, I decided to commit the wall in which my desk and computer face to be the Inspiration Wall.  I have a few ideas banging against one another in my head, but picture frames are a must.  White and silver picture frames at that.  Did you know that the bigger the white picture frame is, the more popular it is...therefore, more expensive?  YES!.   Just what I always wanted!  Overpriced pieces of wood!  Anyway.  Mounds of strong bitterness later...

I decided to hoard all the old picture frames Sparky and I have...despite their size, color, and shape... and I am going to paint them!  I never thought I would become a DIY-er...but my cheap ways have given me no choice.  Additionally, I stumbled upon some great deals at Target one weekend and I had to splurge on my finds.

I got :
2   3pk 4x6 white frames for $2 each = $4 (for 6 frames!)
1   16 in x 20 in - matted to 11 in. x 14 in. silver frame for $7.48 (originally $29.99!)
1   white collage frame with 7 4x6 spots for $4.48 (originally $8.99)
I also purchased a pack of 3 17"chalkboard dots for $7.48(originally $29.99!)  ...I know these are not picture frames but they still will come in handy for the Inspiration Wall!

So my lucky Target trip cost me $23.44 + tax and uber excitement, so that I can hang 14 pics and write love notes inspirational quotes in chalk.  The original price would have been $72.97 + tax and buyers remorse!!!  I saved $49.53 and a case of the shingles probably!!!  Ice cream here I come.

So just for you, here is my pile under the wall they will someday hang lovely display of recent purchases mixed in with my hoarded pile of old frames soon to be painted and filled with my own picture love.

I will post of the painting of photo frames sometime soon!

Keep on Keepin on.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Our Motley Crew

Last Saturday was a beautiful day...unlike our 1st day of Spring, blizzard-like conditions of today.  boo.  I took advantage of last Saturday's beautiful conditions and ...again/of course...I took pics of the dogs.  I am a pathetic dog mother that takes TONS and TONS of pics of her dogs.  Yes, I am that person.  But they are such great models! 

Case and point...

Meet Chewy.  He's our 14 yr old mut.  We don't really know what he is and have thought about doing a doggy DNA test, but part of the Chewy Charm is his mystery...and his stench.  Yes, being 14yrs old does not come without your fair share of natural odor.  But he's so incredibly sweet and loving that you normally forget your nose is invaded by awfulness.  He's also really spunky for being 14 yrs old and his best friend is the youngest of the "motley crew", my little Ruby.  They play constantly which is great since it hopefully keeps him young at heart.

You all probably recognize Ruby, aka "the roo".  Ruby is my the little baby.  She is half bassett/half beagle, aka ...wait for it...a....BAGLE!  ha!  love it.  Anyway, she and Chewy are best of buds and I think they have a bit of dog-romance.  It's so cute.  Ruby loves the sunshine and sticks.  Yes, sticks.  I save many dollars and cents not buying dog toys for her becuase of her love for sticks.  She's not too bad at playing fetch either!

You've also seen Harley on here a few times.  She's the brat...for sure.  She's all of 3lbs but is everything bossy, stubborn, snobby, spoiled, and Alpha.  She does almost whatever she wants.  Well, I do get on to her about a lot of stuff.  I, unlike Sparky, try to make sure she knows she doesn't get special treatment from the other dogs.  She totally loves me more than Sparky for this and he gets uber jealous!  tee hee!

This is Macey.  I rarely get pics of her because she hates having her photo taken.  She instantly runs away or strategically places her back to me everytime the camera comes out for photo fun.  She hates it with a passion.  She also hates other dogs.  Not in a mean violent way, but in a I'm-not-a-mangy-dog-like-you kind of way.  She seriously thinks she's human and possibly superior to humans.  Total snob central.  But, she has her moments of weakness when all she wants is to be loved by you and it's totally worth the snobbiness.  Plus, it helps out that she doesn't want too much attention because the other three "motley crew" members need and beg for it constantly.

And below are some additional photo fun shots with the dogs... and Sparky.  As you will notice, Sparky loves his little Harley...he is the reason she thinks she can do whatever she wants.  She totally dominates him.  Not me.  She knows who the real Alpha is.  Ha!

Sparky has no chance against this 3lb-er in a match-up.

Ruby strongly dislikes being groomed.  I think she was gettin "told" here.  In your face little bagle.

Again.  spoiled.

Boy time!  Chewy loves to play with Sparky. and vice versa.  Just hold your nose!

 I think this pic speaks for itself.  I shouldn't have to remind you about this little thing.

So, since I'm getting new to photo taking and completely loving it, let me know if you enjoy the photos I've been sharing.  Let me know what you would like to see more photos of and I can attempt to take photos of what you suggest! 

Plus, of the photos in this post, which do you like best?

Keep on keepin on.

Monday, March 15, 2010

1st Birthday

This past Saturday was the celebration of a friend's son's first birthday.  First birthdays are always fun to attend because 1. you know there will be cake, and 2. you know a baby will get cake EVERYWHERE!  yay!

So, I took the opportunity to take a few pics of the adorable one year old.

Father and son.  awwwww. I love the birthday boy's eyes!

The Birthday Boy!  (i love this close-up!)

Yay! for cake! Especially cupcakes!

Is Daddy keeping cake away from the birthday boy?!

my fave.  he's so sweet.  

Keep on Keepin on.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

I'm Crushing On...

Urban Outfitters + Ruffles = my little heaven

Remember when I shared with you my crush on the Waterfall Ruffle Curtains (in Ivory and Grey) at Urban Outfitters?  They are $68 a panel and are still waiting on my wish list to be purchased.  I'd like to get 4 panels for the home office.  Still crossing my fingers!  I'm kind of holding out for a sale but I also don't want to miss out on them either!  I'm so torn.  They are beautiful.

Well, now UO has gone and made me drool some more with these little have-to-gets!

The Waterfall Ruffle Shams for $38 and the Waterfall Ruffle Duvet Cover for $128.  I think they are so divine. 

And the Tuxedo Ruffle Shams for $36 and Quilit for $98 are super adorable too...if the Ivory Waterfall is a little much for you. 

And if those are not ruffle enough for you, check out the Waterfall Ruffle Shower Curtain for $68!!

Keep on Keepin on.

A Little Cheering Up

This past weekend was a bust.  Sparky and I are both battling sinus infections with a little extra body ache here and there and pounding headaches for me.  We both laid on the couch yesterday instead of heading to work and our weekend consisted of mostly couch,  blankets, and television.  So, to cheer myself up, I've been perusing some old photos.

This is ruby laying at our old home a couple of years ago.  She LOVES sunshine and windows...and laying around.

Photos below were taken last year around St. Patrick's day wheh we were planting our vegetables. 

And this is Ruby chewing on a stick a few years ago.  This pic always makes me laugh.

Keep on keepin on.