July 21, 2014

back to life

Back to reality. We are back from our wonderful annual trip to Florida and this year has been more of a challenge to get back into the swing of things than ever before. This year was our best year yet. Eve is old enough now that we don't have to break our day with an afternoon nap and the girls play so well together (most days) that they can entertain each other while I can occasionally sit still for a whole five minutes. Everyone is swimming like a fish and this year we got to celebrate my birthday, and America's, on the beach - where all birthdays should be celebrated.

But most importantly I unplugged and it was wonderful. Aside from the random Instagram here and there, I was offline. Blissfully offline. As much as I love this community I'm so lucky to be apart of and the work I get to do every day with my wonderful clients, it is important to let your mind breathe once in a while. I even passed up my yearly trip to Scott's this year on our way home as I was just too relaxed. Crazy.

We did tons of diving and digging and our annual sea shell collection will have lots of dollars in the pot.

Exploring is always on the schedule

as well as several daily walks on the beach.

Hmm. I can't imagine why I miss it already. So excuse the cobwebs while I try to get back on schedule. Luckily we have many birthday parties, reading projects and school shopping to snap us back to reality.

How do you get back to normal after vacation?

June 30, 2014

rest and relaxation

It is that time of year my friends. My favorite time of year - vacation time! We are down in Florida enjoying some quality beach time, family time and most likely some thrifting time as well. Follow along on Instagram to get all the latest.


See ya in two weeks!!

June 23, 2014

racing stripe bookcase: before and after

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Glidden® paint through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select. While I was compensated to write a post about Glidden paint, all opinions are my own.

While cleaning out my hall closet, I found a great little bookcase that had been hidden behind piles of coats, umbrellas and who knows what else. An old piece that came from my parents garage years ago that was sturdy but the victim of a very bad refinishing job.

So when Glidden® paint asked if I'd like to try their Glidden paint Duo Paint + Primer, I knew I had a good candidate on my hands. I wanted something bright and fresh for this little number. Something to give it a bit of style.

Color combos were an important consideration for me because I wanted something bright and, you know me - colorful, but I also wanted something different. What better chance to step out of your color comfort zone then with a blah piece of furniture, am I right? I even took a quick poll on Instagram.

Coral and white won out in the end thanks to a beautiful shade called Glidden paint's Cheery Cherry. Great name, right? Right up my alley. I tried the Glidden paint's Bright White in Eggshell and Glidden paint's Cheery Cherry in Semi-Gloss.

After stripping and sanding the bookshelf, I was ready to start painting. (Check this out for more info on how I strip and prep furniture for paint).

Disregard the beat up manicure and focus on my too very close hand. See any paint on there? Me neither. One of my biggest beefs when painting is all of the spray that ends up on my hand when rolling the paint on. I see one little spec of paint on my hand and this was after painting the whole piece. Aces.

Two coats later I had a bright white bookcase ready for a bit of fun.

All kinds of crazy ideas went thru my head on what to do with the inside of the bookshelf. I knew I didn't want to just paint the whole inside one color as that is the way it was before and it left the inside like a black hole. A stencil or some type of pattern crossed my mind but because of its size and fixed shelves, I thought it would end up looking too busy once it had books etc. inside. Ultimately, the single racing stripe won out.

The hubs helped to measure everything out to make sure that the stripe was centered and consistent all the way down.

Once the tape is down it is vital to paint one more coat of your base color over the tape to prevent any bleed thru. Learn from my mistakes people, this will make for very straight lines. It is so worth the extra step.

Two coats of Glidden paint's Cheery Cherry and I've got myself a racing stripe bookcase. I'm in love.

Straight lines make me giddy. And that semi gloss finish on the racing stripe gives just the right amount of shine.

I've already moved this bookcase into a few different spots, banging it when going thru doorways (when will I ever learn) but the paint has stayed in great shape. Not a nick in site. I'm loving the style it will bring to my new walk in closet.

Have you painted anything lately? Are you into racing stripes as much as I am? Is it possible that I'm obsessed with coral now?

memory lane and the perfect sunday

Good morning all! I'm hitting the ground running this week by sprinkling myself all over the place today. How's that for a Monday morning visual?

I'm over at my friend Jennifer's sharing my five favorite blog posts. I decided it would be a fun time to pull some older posts out of moth balls so it will be kind of like looking thru an old yearbook.

Click on over and check it out here!

And then be sure to stop by Short and Sweet where I'm talking about my perfect Sunday here. Love that series!

Check back in later this morning as well for a before and after! Like I said, hitting the ground running people.

June 20, 2014

fess up friday - short and sweet

Today is a good day for three reasons. One, it is Friday. (duh) Two, Alexa is here. And three, Kirby is here too. Kirby and Alexa, better known as Short and Sweet are a daily must read. One of the things I love best about their blog is that they are aces at mixing it up. Beauty posts, lifestyle, design and shopping - they cover it all but it is always original and relatable. And their fess up today is no different. I'm so glad they are here to wrap up Fess Up Friday for the summer. So ladies, fess up!

We are not fashion bloggers.

So much of the blogging world is aspirational. It's fun to see the way some of our favorite bloggers style the items sitting in our online shopping carts, but it's hard to take fashion photos in our real lives. We both have jobs. We each have a dog, and Alexa has a toddler and a baby. To be honest, outfit posts take a lot of time! First there's hair (are we the only ones who wear top knots 90% of the time?) and makeup (more makeup for photos is better), then there's the clothes, shoes (in case you didn't guess from the title of our blog we're both short), and lighting. The best photos are typically taken in the daylight, but we usually blog in the early morning or late night hours. Here are a few outfit post outtakes that didn't make the blog.

The lighting here is all wrong. All we had to do was cross the street to take better photos for the final post, but it took some trial and error.
This is Tank. He gets worried whenever the camera comes out and runs into the shot for a quick cuddle. Who can resist that face?
This is what happens when you wear something to brunch and try to take photos later. Even Photoshop can't fix those wrinkles.

There is so much going on here I'm not sure where to begin. Notice the random string of yard draped across the lawn. That was there for probably two weeks. As were the egg and doll house furniture. The baby was at a height of consternation at this point (as you can tell by his clenched fists).

"Mommy's taking a photo right now. Yes if you're good you can have a chocolate chip afterwards. Ok two chocolate chips. Ok three. Ok, why don't I just bake you two dozen chocolate chip cookies?" Also, notice the bandaid on my forefinger. No idea what that was from.

But, it's all in a day's work, right? At least for a blogger. ;)
Thanks for having us Elizabeth!

June 18, 2014

home office makeover - from the ground up

As promised, I've got updates for you today on the old home office makeover. Which actually is a bit misleading as 'makeover' implies that I'm redoing a space when in reality there was no 'space' here. So I guess creation would be better. But let's be real, 'makeover' sounds more fun.

Here is the inspiration board I'm working off of. For those of you that have followed me on a number of projects, you know that I like to closely follow my design boards (type A much?). No straying for me. Except this time. This is truly an inspiration because as I said at the beginning of this project, I'm trying to work with what I have as much as possible. And sadly, I don't have a spare Madeline Weinrib rug in my stash.

I do have a big black and gold foiled shade that would make a great DIY light. And a desk that I can turn into something pink and fabulous. And an amazing arm chair from an estate sale. You get the picture. So know I'm aiming to replicate this as closely as possible, but changes to the plan are highly possible.

In other news my glorious hubs replaced my window with a brand spanking new one. It is clear, it opens up all the way and it is efficient. What more can one want from a window I ask you. I was prepared to write up how he removed an old junky 60-year-old basement window and replaced it with a new one. But then I sat down to write it and thought, what the hell are you doing? You know nothing about how to replace a window. You were watching Orange is the New Black while he did this. So I will keep it real - I have no idea how he did it. If you really want to know, let me know and maybe I'll have him do a post about it at some point.

So no tutorial, but a great before and after picture instead. Just as good, right?

So I may not have replaced the window, but I did paint the floors. I may have done a bit of spray painting down here in my pre-children days so the floor was even more trashed than a typical basement floor. But thanks to my previous experience painting basement floors (here and here) I wasn't worried. Thankfully I didn't have to remove any carpet strips or tacks this time, all I had to do was do a bit of light sanding and a heavy cleaning.

I did mix it up a bit this time and went with Benjamin Moore Porch and Floor paint because I wanted to use this beautiful color. Bermuda Turquoise. I have been dying to use this color for some time and it did not disappoint. It is the most beautiful, deep, rich, color. Evah!

Bam. I pretty much want to kiss my basement floor. How's that for things I'd never thought I'd say? I had to crop this picture as there are some secrets going on over to the right. To be honest there are secrets in plain view over to the left too but consider those a tease. Sweet progress.

Goals for the space:
- brighten it up
- fix and paint the floors
- do something with the exposed ceiling
- replace the window to let in even more light
- girly this place up to create a happy, adult work space
- add more light
- use what you HAVE
- get organized girl!

Now I just need to paint the rest of the desk, figure out storage, lighting and about a million other things. I think I'll go work upstairs on my closet to take my mind off of all this work. Ha!

Do you have a color you've been dying to try? A window you've been dying to replace? A show you've been dying to watch? (Seriously, I need some new Netflix recommendations). 

June 16, 2014

why finish one project when you can start another

The week has begun and I'm sure I'm not the only one who could use another day. I think its time to start mandatory three day weekends in the summer. Who's with me?

I hope all that celebrated had a wonderful Father's Day. We had a great afternoon with the hubs and my dad doing what they love - watching the US Open. And there was a Father's Day miracle when I was finally able to snag some peonies from Trader Joes. I had thought they were an urban myth but I ran in yesterday and there they were in all their white and pink glory. I'm sure everyone in the produce section thought I was crazy as I squealed when I saw them.

Another miracle is that progress has been made on the office. I'll share more with you later this week, but needless to say when the pool is calling your name, it is hard to spend time in the basement.

While I was hard at work, I ran to grab something from the hall closet. And I don't know if it's all the pool water in my ears or what but I could not take that black hole any longer. It is one of my goals for the year to get this closet in order so no better time to start than while you are in the middle of another project, right?!

Luckily the paint was drying in the office so I had time to kill. Off to Home Depot for color ideas and I was off to the races. More to come once everything dries.

So how was your weekend? Finish any projects? Start any new ones? Did you see Zach Johnson's hole in one?!

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