Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Crush and A Little Attitude

As usual, there has been a lot of ruckus around our household the last few weeks.  As you all know, I sold my dining table and chairs (aka my first big girl purchase) and we have been without one for a little over a week.  We have looked at many options and have decided suddenly that a trip to Ikea is well overdue. 

Sparky and I will head south this upcoming Friday, about 3 hrs to the closest Ikea, for a day of wonderful dining table shopping.  We are hoping that the table we are crushing on will fit in my car!  It's the Norden Dining Table in Birch for $399.00.  It extends to fit up to 10 people!  I'm in L.O.V.E.

We are pretty confident it will fit in the good ole Subaru hatchback with a few ties...but I'm hoping this trip doesn't turn into another desk, bookcase, chair fiasco from earlier this year.  We are "attempting" to plan ahead on this trip but I'm sure there will be a story or two to share upon our return.

In addition to all our forever-to-be-continued household to-do's, we also acquired a little "houseguest" in the beginning of August.  For the past three weeks, Sparky and I have had a “houseguest” living in our spare bedroom. We will refer to this person from this point forward as “HG-funk” or “him” so that I do not ever embarrass “him” with my postings. But being that this is my personal blog diary and my place of happy refuge in the blogosphere, I will more than likely either "need-to" or "want-to" post about HG-funk on a regular basis. I hope that future HG-funk posts will be on a want-to basis rather than a need-to basis...I’m crossing my fingers.

Here is a quick re-cap of HG-funk:

Moved in Sunday, August 8, 2010. HG-funk’s 4 year relationship officially over. Since then, he started a new job 30 minutes away and started his first day of school another 30 minutes away.  The car he had been driving did not belong to him and was taken away by EX-person (aka a really bad break-up).  This past weekend, HG-funk sees EX-person dating someone else.  Monday, August 30, 2010, fired from job.

Downward spiral of self-denial, self-pity, and uber self-consumption had already been in full swing on move-in day ...and is continuing with full throttle.  Sparky and I have offered to purchase a very CHEAP 3rd Subaru vehicle (of course) so that HG-funk will have some means of transportation to get to school and work. We have not asked HG-funk for money in rent or food and Sparky is letting HG-funk use his own car to get to school and work for almost a week and further now until we get him another car. Because of this, Sparky has been without a car and instead been riding his bicycle, his scooter, or car-pooling with yours truly to get to work or anywhere else.

HG-funk is family. HG-funk does not have a drug problem. HG-funk was not raised under-privileged by any means whatsoever. HG-funk does not have a drinking problem...yet and hopefully not ever. I think HG-funk attempted to have a drinking problem. As of last week, alcohol is STRICTLY prohibited in our home...even by Sparky or myself until we can figure out this situation.

For all parties considered, I am looking to this quote that I have framed and sitting on my desk everyday.  Most of the time I overlook this wise framed quote, but I have been staring at it constantly lately.

Attitude by Charles Swindoll
"The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.  Attitude, to me, is more important than facts.  It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think, say or do.  It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill.  It will make or break a company...a church...a home.  The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we embrace for that day.  We cannot change our past...we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way.  We cannot change the inevitable.  The only thing we can do is play the one string we have, and that is our attitude...I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.  And so it is with you...we are in charge of our Attitudes."

I love and embrace this quote as fully as I possibly can and I ask that everyone else who reads it to do the same and pass it along.

Keep on Keepin on.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Changes in Dining

For the last few months, I have been wanting to get a new dining table.  With all the other changes going on around our home, a new dining table chosen by both Sparky and I just seemed like the next best thing. 

You see, Sparky never really liked my dining table and chairs.  When we moved in together, my dining table and 8 chairs were one of the few things I was adamant about having in our home.  I loved my dining room table and 8 chairs because a) they are pretty awesome in my opinion and b) they were my first big grown-up furniture purchase when I bought my own house 3 three years.  When I put my house up for rent and moved in with good-ole Sparky, my big dining table and all 8 chairs were coming with me... our first big compromise I guess. 

This is a pic of the the dining table in our home.  We only have 6 chairs set out but there are actually 8 chairs.

So, after a year and 4 months of living together and me perusing furniture stores online constantly, I found a few dining tables I really like...and decided it was time to compromise in return with Sparky.  Our first big furniture purchase chosen TOGETHER...aka...me putting together a list in which Sparky may choose from only that list (tee hee).  It's only fair that we can dine together at a table we both thoroughly enjoy, right?

In preparation of our new dining table purchase, I decided to post an add on Craigslist for my dining table and 8 chairs.  I had actually been procrastinating with this task until I was fully confident about my decision.  This afternoon around 1:00 pm, I actually did it.  I posted my dining table and 8 chairs for sale on craigslist thinking that it would take a few inquiries before it would actually sell.  Nope.

My for sale ad went up at 1:50 pm and my first interested buyer contacted me at 2:19 pm.  She scheduled to come over to see it around 5:30 pm, showed up exactly on time, walked around it once, and was sold.  She bought it right there and had someone on their way with a truck to come get it.  Now it's 6:52 pm and my first big grown-up furniture purchase from 3 years ago is gone.

Let's have a moment of silence....


burp (oh, excuse me)

I know it's just a table and chairs and it's just stuff, but I was actually slightly sentimental about this ordeal.  I'm glad it happened the way it happened.  Quick.  No real time to think or hesitate. 


Now we don't have a dining table!!!  I didn't think it would sell that quickly!  So, now Sparky and I need to narrow down our new dining table choices...and you can help!!  Here we go...

First off, I love West Elm.  You have to check our their modern and earth friendly (green living) items.  Plus, all their items seem so natural and beautiful while still being so incredibly inviting, luxurious, and comforting all at the same time!  I have a serious crush on them and have been looking for a reason to buy something from them for some time now...so why not a dining table??!!

My first favorite is the Terra Dining Table for $499.  This table is "Eco-chic dining. Simple, clean-lined table crafted of FSC certified woods with a raw, textural ash veneer."

The next table option is the Modern Farm Dining Table for $599 (available in natural and chestnut).  This table is "The classic farm table, updated with clean lines and the rich, smooth grain of sungkai wood veneer. The grain differs from piece to piece, making each piece totally unique." 

Our last choice...and is Sparky's fave...is the Slab Dining Table for $499 from CB2.  This table is "not so vanilla. Spare slab on slab design reflects a softer shade of modern in hi-gloss oat (think white + the color of cement). Seats six easy. Wood composite with hi-gloss lacquer finish."

I would have to say that I am actually also leaning toward the Slab Dining Table from CB2 even though I so desperately want to buy something from West Elm because of their green living and natural attitude.  But, I've been trying so desperately to lighten up all our furniture that the slab cement color seems like it would fit in the very best...with that said, the other two tables would still look beautiful in our home!  ugh.

Please share you opinion!  Which do yo like best?

Keep on Keepin on.

Friday, August 20, 2010

A Long Time Coming

I know I've said more than once that I need to post pics of the house now that it's "done"...complete?  Yeah right.  It's as complete as it is will be until the heat subsides a little.

Below is a pic of the front of the house with the new Terra Cotta roof and the driveway and walkway painted black.  Sparky was determined to have a black driveway and decided to just do it himself.  I was a bit skeptical about the black driveway but I will have to admit that I actually really like the black driveway.  It makes the Terra Cotta roof and white house pop more (in a good way) than I had imagined.  Point for Sparky.

Before (ack)


Below is a pic of the backyard with the two new pergolas, new deck....and uninstalled french doors just chilling out like the big eye sore it is...it's taunting us everytime we walk past the big energy sucking sliding glass doors.  But, it's just so hot that changing the doors will need to wait since Sparky will be doing the work himself.  We need to consider the time it will take him to change out the doors since he's never done it before and we need to prepare for any mishaps...just sayin.  We've learned by now to try to prepare for the worst.



So you can see the french doors hanging out.  Not installed.  This means that there is still a lot of work to check off our honey-do list.  We purchased an espresso colored stain for the deck (which we have not stained yet) and have yet to make a final decision of the color of the pergolas.

The past two months have been filled with work work work, but it's so satisfying to sit on our new deck in the hot evening looking over our backyard and conjuring up what else we could do  to keep ourselves busy and improve our home.

Keep on Keepin on.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Snack Alert: Stoneyfield Yogurt and more

I'm sitting here having my afternoon snack and realized I should probably share its wonderfulness with you.  One of my favorite snacks is Stoneyfield Farms Strawberry Yogurt mixed with fresh fruit.  Today I have mixed fresh blueberries with the wonderful organic strawberry yogurt splendidness.  Yum Yum!

Stoneyfield Farms is wonderful in many ways and has so many wonderful, tasty, organic products...including ice cream!  eeee!     Below is Stoneyfields Farms "Yogurt on a mission" statement from their website:

Yogurt on a mission

We’re no greenhorns when it comes to green business. We were on a mission to make the planet healthier even before we were making yogurt. Today, we make it our mission to work towards all sorts of healthy.

Our mission:
We’re committed to healthy food, healthy people, a healthy planet, and healthy business.
Healthy food. We will craft and offer the most delicious and nourishing organic yogurts and dairy products.
Healthy people. We will enhance the health and wellbeing of our consumers and colleagues.
Healthy planet. We will help protect and restore the planet, and promote the viability of family farms.
Healthy business. We will prove that healthy profits and a healthy planet are not in conflict, and that in fact dedication to health and sustainability enhances shareholder value. We believe that business must lead the way to a more sustainable future.

Their range of products include various yogurts, probiotics, smoothies, ice cream (yay!), milk, yo baby, yo toddler, yo kids, oikos (organic greek yogurt), and o'soy.

They also have coupons and offers including a Racheal Ray giveaway!

You should definitely check out their website for recipies, tips on organic living, and information on what you can do for a healthier you and planet!

If you live in the OKC metro area and want to find Stoneyfield Farm products, I have always had luck at most Homelands and Akins Natural Foods.  I've found some yogurts at some local Wal-Marts but it's hit or miss.  I haven't been able to find the ice cream at Homeland yet, but AKINSseems to always have it in stock!  You can also search the Stoneyfield site for locations that carry their products.

Happy organic shopping!

Keep on Keepin on.

Blog Crush

I absolutely heart with a passion Apartment 34 blog.  She always seems to be thinking, loving, and crushing everything in my brain and heart...she's just so much better (and consistant) at conveying all her wonderfulness.

This post and photo are exactly what I am doing in my head and wanting to do at this moment.  Sitting in front of a window and contemplating always seems to lead to a little more clarity.  Plus, I love comfy, baggy, chic clothing and hair placed in a bun.  Just sayin.

Keep on Keepin on.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Dresser...check. Life...to be continued.

Two Sunday's ago was completion day for the dresser and nightstands in our guest bedroom.  If you remember from this post of the first nightstand test project, the furniture is/was a nasty dark cherry brown.  Now at least the dresser and nightstand are a new white with new hardware.  The sleigh bed and armoire are next for transformations.  Since the room is all miss-matched, all you get to see it the dresser for now.  lol. 

 Dresser all done.  Yay! You can see the footboard of the untouched bed in the bottom right...ew.

I will have to say, that making over furniture is not the easiest project for a beginner...especially me.  I give uber props to those that have mastered furniture makeovers.  High five, yal'll!  I'm not a naturally crafty person.  My creativity is normally restricted to a pen and paper, but even that seems to be seriously lacking lately.

I am in need of extensive motivation, inspiration, and change.  You may experience overwhelming randomness on this blog due to the beforementioned necessities.  I apologize now or you can thank me later.  We shall see.

Keep on Keepin on.

Friday, August 06, 2010

Pergola! Yay!

This past month has been super uber busy and crazy.  My last post told you of our new roof and I have yet to get a final shot to reveal it...because there were some additional changes that Sparky had to get done.  In the past month we have completed the following:  two pergolas, a deck, changed all hardware on exterior doors as well as add a deadbolt, painted the driveway black (yes, black!), painted the front door black (sorry awesome red door), and started and almost finished the dresser and nightstands for the spare bedroom.  We also ordered a new french door to replace the energy sucking nasty old sliding glass door that leads out to the new deck. 

In addition to all these great honey-do's, we worked (a lot) at our day jobs, celebrated my 28th birthday, I went to my 10 year high school reunion, and we took a five day vacation to North Carolina for my cousin's wedding. 

whew.  I'm tired.

I caught myself saying to Sparky this morning (while getting ready for work), "I can't wait until tomorrow morning so that I don't have to wake up to an alarm.  I'll probably only sleep in until 7:30 am, but I can't wait to sleep in." 

We still have to get the french doors installed and I need to finish the dressers and nightstands so that I can start on the headboard and footboard of the guest bed.  (I'm so excited about this project!!! It's looking so good so far!)  We also plan to head to TLC (a local nursery...for plants!) to start looking for vines, flowers, and bushes to plant on the new pergolas and the back yard to prepare for next year....(that's a hint for something exciting happening next year).

PLUS, Sparky has to study for his engineering exam.  His second test comes up in late October, so we have to start limiting our honey-do's for some very necessary super uber studying like last year's test in October.  The test coming up will be the last, so we have to be diligent! 

For now, here are some pics of our first pergola when it was in process and the beginning of the deck.  I'll try to get some final pics over the weekend!

The first post to set up for "squaring the posts".   "Squaring the posts" may have been the most difficult process of anything ever!  If you ever decide to build your own pergola, do a lot of research and asking around about squaring of the posts if you have never done it before yourself.  We did ask around and did research, and it was still a time consuming ordeal.  ...or maybe we just suck.  Of course, Ruby had to sniff out the situation as well.

We had this old nasty concrete pink-ish colored patio that was a nasty eye-sore.  We built the deck over the patio but the pergola had to go in first.  We had to screw in and concrete two of the posts into the concrete patio.  Chewy too is keeping good watch on the progess.

After the four posts were squared perfectly enough for us, Sparky added the main beams to support the smaller cross beams.  He was also able to get a friend over to help for a few hours with some of the heavier lifting that I just was not willing to do built for.   But little Harley thought she could show me up in the strength category.  Pompous chihuahua.

Then there was the addition of the smaller cross beams.  Sparky had a specific idea in mind of the shape he wanted for the ends of the beams, so he measured and cut all the ends himself.  He was trying for a more simple modern look.

I thought this was a cute little shot.  It started pouring down rain in the middle of trying to screw in the smaller cross beams.  Both Sparky and his friend were sitting at the top with their legs hanging down getting drenched.  Poor guys.  (You can't see the rain very well at all.)

Afterward, we started framing the deck. 

And Ruby loved it.

I'll get some shots over the weekend of the final products to share with you!

Keep on Keepin on.