Resolutions...Come On, Everyone's Doing It

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

I've never been big on making resolutions for the new year. I feel like if you have a problem, start exploring solutions to it as soon as possible. I do, however, love the idea of starting fresh and feeling like anything is possible, so this year I decided to jump on the wagon and make some rezzies.

Here they are:

Picture Arranging Like A Boss

Saturday, December 28, 2013

I wanted to share a fun new project I finished up this past week. It's amazing what you can accomplish when you're off work and in your pajamas until 3 in the afternoon.

Our house is two stories and the big blank wall along the staircase started to drive me crazy. I knew I wanted to do a photo arrangement but I wasn't sure if I wanted to do a combination of pictures and objects like Jenni's or just keep it simple with photos. In the end, I went the easy route and did pictures  because I just wasn't patient enough to wait and collect things. 

I went to Home Goods for all my frames. They're reasonably priced and I was able to sprawl everything out on the floor and arrange all my finds before purchasing anything. I gravitate towards the earthy look so I went for wood, blue, cream and one distressed black frame for a contrast. 

I read a lot of tutorials before I started and they all said to make outlines of the frames and use painters tape to arrange them on the wall before nailing anything in. So I did just that...

Now, most of the tutorials also said to measure everything perfectly. I did not do this. I eyeballed everything and moved it around until I liked how it looked. I don't recommend this if you are a perfectionist. There is a good chance you will get overwhelmed and fall down the stairs.

Another thing I did was put marks on the outlines where all of the brackets were so all I (my boyfriend) had to do was drill right into them.

Here's how it turned out...

Oh, the Weather Outside Is Sunny and 75

Monday, December 23, 2013

{via pinterest - source unknown}

Two days, guys. Are you ready? I know as a blogger this is probably a cardinal sin to admit but I'm not a fan of Christmas. I feel like it has just gotten out of hand and can be unnecessarily stressful. Don't even get me started on adults making Christmas lists, either. I'm a big proponent of Thanksgiving where the day consists of turkey (great for diabetics!) and family time. Lucky for me my sister, and with a little convincing, my mom feel the same about Christmas so this year we decided to have a "no gifts" holiday. Absolutely no gifts will be exchanged on the 25th. None. Zero. Zilch.

I will give you a minute to either stop cussing me out or pick yourself up off the floor. I know it seems awful scroogie of us to adopt this tradition but honestly, it's been the best holiday season in a long time.  My stress level has been incredibly low for this time of the year and as we speak I'm baking apple cider donuts (not great for diabetics!) and hanging out with my family.

I'm not saying this newfound tradition is for everyone but it's worth a try if you feel like you've forgotten the real meaning of the holidays and want to get back to those roots. Even if it's only for one year.

However you're spending the next few days, enjoy yourself and give a great big ol' hug to all the special people around you.

Currently Stalking: Amber Interiors

Thursday, December 19, 2013

My sister gave me some really great decorating advice when we moved into our house. She said "Live in it for a while before you buy a lot of things. Your style may change from what you wanted when the house was empty." I wish I had followed this advice but alas, I am the youngest child and I'm impatient and stubborn and wanted everything done and decorated yesterday. It's a very long way from being done (we don't even have a dining table, yet) but already I'm bored with some things. The first one being our couch pillows. It's all I can think about these days. #realworldproblems

I started checking out A Creative Day's blog roll because I really identify with Eileen's design aesthetic and I love her DIY projects so I knew she would be following some creative people. Well, lo and behold I found Amber Interiors and OMG, be still my heart. I know, I know, I'm probably super late to this gorgeous train but I'm so into her stuff. She mixes colors and patterns like a boss and keeps that neutral background, which I love. I've been devouring her candid blog and I can't stop looking at her portfolio pictures. 

Take a looksie...

I died over the last one. Those pillows are perfection.

My heart sank a bit when I saw the prices for her pillows, however, I did find this Etsy shop that carries some very similar designs. I have my sights set on this little indigo number.

Take a mental health break and bask in the amazing-ness of Amber's site and drool over some kilim rugs.    


Slim-Fast Chocolate and PB Smoothie

Monday, December 16, 2013

Having diabetes, or the 'betes as I like to call it, totally sucks. I'm not going to sugarcoat it for you. It just does. At the same time, however, I consider myself very lucky because it's absolutely possible to lead a normal, healthy lifestyle with this disease. It just takes a little bit of sacrifice and some very meticulous counting.

Every diabetic is different but for me, personally, routine is key. I eat pretty much the exact same thing every single day, with a few small variations. It sounds boring, but it makes life a whole lot easier because I have a good idea of what my blood sugar is going to do at all times.

I wanted to share one of my go-to smoothie recipes that I make almost everyday for lunch. I love smoothies. I have a whole Pinterest board devoted to them. I try to avoid ones with juices because they spike my blood sugar, so I lean towards the creamier ones. 

Here's how I make my Slim-Fast and PB Smoothie...

Cinema Under the Stars

Friday, December 13, 2013

Jared and I have never been to the movies together. I know, right? It's not like anything traumatic happened to us either. It's just that Jared really, really doesn't like to go. I've thought about guilt tripping him into it but then I realized he would be all cranky and try to talk to me during the movie. And, well, I don't need that while I'm trying to watch Channing Tatum drop it like it's hot.

One of his main arguments for not wanting to go to the movies is he doesn't want to be cooped up inside a dark room for two hours. I'm always looking for fun new things for us to do in San Diego and the other day I came across something that might solve our problem...

Cinema Under the Stars! It's a little outdoor venue in Mission Hills that shows outdoor movies. It's been around for 20 years, which is complete news to me, and shows everything from Roman Holiday to Magic Mike. You can even book online and reserve your exact seats! Tickets are $15 for non-members so not much more than a traditional theater and hello, you're paying for the ambiance. I can't give it my whole hearted approval since I haven't been yet, but I'm going to check it out one of these days and let you know how it goes. They're showing Love Actually tonight and tomorrow, which is one of my favorites. Hint, hint, Jared.

The only bummer is you can't bring your own drinks or snacks in and they only serve candy and popcorn. I will definitely be smuggling in some trail mix and pulling the diabetes card if I get caught.

Wish List: Front Door

Thursday, December 12, 2013

One of the best things about our little house is it needs zero work. It's a 1945 craftsman bungalow (which you would know if I got my act together and posted our home tour pics) and it was recently bought and flipped. This means it's perfect for me because it has all of the character I was looking for in an older home without the need to do any updating. It still has the original hardwood floors and beautiful old windows, yet a remodeled kitchen with a new heating system. Excellent trade offs. The gentleman who lived in the house before us was 92-years-old when he moved out and he took amazing care of the place. I only wish he had passed on his words of wisdom about the gophers eating the backyard....

Anyways, even though our house is the bomb dot com, I have my little wish list of things I want to change. The house has amazing curb appeal but the one thing I can't stand is the front door. It's a black steel door with this weird geometric glass design. I'm pretty sure it's the go-to door for flips because I've seen it used on a lot of houses for sale around the neighborhood. 

I took to Pinterest, naturally, to scope out some front doors. I want to stay with the black color (matches the roof) and still incorporate windows into the design. The light from the east is insane in the morning and it makes the house so bright. I love it.

This one is in the lead because it's so simple and very similar to what we have, yet no funky geometric shape. It reminds me of a door on a farmhouse and I'm a little bit country so it calls to me.

{via pinterest - source unknown}

This one is also in the running but the door looks straight into the bathroom and I shower at night and don't always close the door. This could be an exposure problem. Not my problem, but the neighbors problem. We're still too new to the block to be pulling stuff like that and I don't want to make enemies (or maybe friends) that way.

{via pinterest - source unknown}

And finally we have the traditional craftsman front door. It's definitely in third place because I don't think it has enough windows, however, it would alleviate the problem above and I just love the detail.

Decisions, decisions. I will let you know what we end up choosing. It probably won't be for another year or ten so be patient. I watched a YouTube video on how to paint a front door and was instantly tired, so if that is any indication of my motivation level we are in big trouble. 

Curly Hair Don't Care

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Story of my life. Don't get me wrong, 99% of the time I love my curls. They're different and that's fun. I also have super fine, thin hair so it looks like I have way more hair on my head than I actually do. 

There are, however, some types of people I can't stand when it comes to my hair.

1. The Straightener
They're obsessed with seeing my hair straight. They constantly ask why I don't straighten it and if they can please do it and they keep pleading and saying "OMG, IT WILL LOOK SO GOOD!" News flash, it does not look good, at all. It's drab and stringy and well, looks like curly hair that's been straightened. It resembles straw. Not to mention, it takes a good two hours to do and the burning smell and sizzle sound totally freaks me out. The kicker is that after it's all straight, the person who HAD to straighten it and couldn't live another day until they saw it straight goes "Oh, yeah, it doesn't look very good straight. You should definitely have curly hair all the time." Thanks. 

2. The Clueless Hair Stylists
Getting my hair cut is always traumatizing. I stress about it the whole week before my appointment and get super sweaty once they put that black drape over me at the salon. The worst, and I mean worst part about it is asking for "just a little trim" and leaving with a full on curly bob. It's happened. A couple of times. Most of these stylists just don't understand that curly hair shrinks up a good 3-4 inches when it's dry versus wet. I'm not saying every hair person should be an expert on curly hair. I'm just saying that they should know know the dynamics and it annoys me that they don't. Extra rage if they straighten it before I leave, too (see above). 

3. The Touchy Guys
I don't care what Patti Sanger says on Millionaire Matchmaker, some guys love curly hair. I think curly haired girls exude some sort of wildness and guys are all about it. I got my hair cut once and the stylist insisted on straightening it (she was an above mentioned #2) even though I told her not to. I got home and Jared's face dropped and he said "That's not permanent, is it?!"

The guys that love the curly hair from a distance are cool. It's the ones who insist on touching it that I just can't stand. I really don't like anyone touching my hair but creeper guys are the worst. I was at a bar once way back in the day when I wasn't a grandma and in bed by 10 on the weekends, and this guy just randomly came up to me and said "Can I run my fingers through your hair?" I said "No" and went back to chatting with my girlfriends. Out of nowhere he yells "You're a bitch!" I explained to him "No, buddy, you cannot run your fingers through my hair because it's tangly and literally not possible. I can't even run my fingers through my hair."

Crate Camouflage

Monday, December 9, 2013

Relationships are all about compromise, right? At least that is what the old people at weddings are always telling me. Jared and I have a seriously awesome relationship. We hardly ever fight. Life's too short to do anything but have fun and love on one another.

He has been so great about letting me decorate the house. He knows it's my thing and clearly outside is his. For the most part, everything has gone smoothly and the house is coming along. There's just on small thing...

The bass. For those of you who don't know (because I didn't until I looked it up) a bass is supposed to make your TV sound better. I really can't tell a difference but that's an argument right there and we won't get into it. Anyways, Jared says the bass stays and that's cool. Here's a before picture of how it looked against the wall next to the entertainment center:

Kind of an little alien eyesore, right? And here's a side shot when you walk into the house:

I mean, it's not horrible. I can be overly dramatic sometimes. I just thought it could use some friends. So with Jared's blessing I camouflaged it.

Ta da!

Doesn't it look way better? The wall needed something anyways and I needed somewhere to organize my 50 Shades of Grey books. And now the side view:

Barely notice it, huh? 

I grabbed some crates from Michael's and stained them using Minwax Dark Walnut from Home Depot.  The whole project costs me about $30. Staining is quite possibly the easiest thing in the world to do. All you do is paint and wipe, paint and wipe like, a billion times. I also highly recommend sealing them. Although it's a pain in the butt, just do it. It adds a little shine and helps with the stain smell. I love 'em! And that is today's lesson on compromise.  

Granite Counters, Character and Bike Jumps

Sunday, December 8, 2013

When Jared and I first started house hunting, we both knew what we were looking for in a home. I wanted character and basically zero home improvement projects. I can craft but I cannot repair. He wanted a yard with lots of land.  

So, after one too many mimosas at brunch we decided to go check out this house that we both thought looked pretty neat online. Now keep in mind that before this boozy brunch we hadn't taken one step towards purchasing a house. No loan pre-approval, no agent, no nothing...Just casually looking at places online and watching House Hunters every night (which we thought made us pros in the real estate world). We literally went from 0 to 1,000 on the house hunting scale all because of a little OJ and champs. Ok, a lot of OJ and champs. 

Anyways, like I said one of Jared's main requirements was that the house had a big yard. He's from upstate New York where it seems you can practically buy the whole state for the price of one San Diego house. Why the yard, you ask? Well, allow me to show you...

And those would jumps! Aren't they cool? He's been working on them since we moved in, which was about 2 months ago. I mean, maybe you're a little confused and that's ok. I think I understand them because I've known Jared for almost four years now so I'm privy to his hobbies, but 22-year-old Richelle would have been like, wait, what are those and are they for rollerblading?! 

 I love that we both have hobbies and that one of his happens to include "landscaping" the yard. It also makes me happy to know that he has a distraction so I can sit on the couch and watch Bravo marathons all weekend.
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