Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Road trip to New Mexico!

Jerod and Karen just got back from their trip to visit Jerod's parents at their home in New Mexico and I am sooo jealous after looking at his pictures. He invited Jeff and I to come next time and we'll totally take him up on the offer. It's like a 12 hour drive but definitely worth it. We'd make the drive fun anyways. Look at the gorgeousness that is the Rasmussen Home in New Mexico:
Jerod's mom rescues all sorts of sad little animals. She brought back their horse to health and happiness.
They have a goat too! Soooo jealous! I would love a goat. I'd name it Albert. Theirs is named Jackie. She's a good goat.
And the #1 reason for visiting New Mexico? The sunsets. Good Lord Almighty, what a beauty...

Thursday, June 25, 2009

I'm pretty much Bob Villa

Our bathroom upstairs has been looking a little worse for wear lately, with the paint peeling all over the place. We don't have a fan in the bathroom but we have two big gorgeous windows to open, which are unfortunately right at the level of the second story apartment building two doors down. Awesome. So we've had a bit of a moisture problem. Anyways, it finally got on my nerves this weekend and Jeff was busy coloring so I took it upon myself to patch up and repaint the bathroom. No problem! Done in a day! I don't need your help Jeff! Riiiight...

So this is where I started, Day One. These were the peels and drywall dings in the shower stall, that I stared at everyday while shampooing, trying to figure out how the heck you would fix it. My solution for every home ailment? Take a picture of it and march down to Home Depot, find the oldest salesperson on the floor, and ask them how to fix it. Make them take you step by step through it and guide you through the store picking out the supplies.
The fix? Putty of course! Psshh... easy peasy. This was the peeling ceiling before I scraped the crap out of it and made it smooth, again with magic putty.
The worst part for me was the ceiling because on my tippy toes, I just barely reach it with the paint roller, so I had to move around my office chair all around the bathroom and in the shower and tub in order to reach to tape everything off and scrape and putty and paint. Jeff took pity on me and helped with that during the painting stage.
Day One continued: Me puttying up the holes, then sanding the heck out of everything, then cleaning paint dust that fell everywhere... (don't worry Mom, I wore a bandana and it was fully ventilated. I took lots of breaks too.)
We think what happened the first time around, was that the painters didn't do the all-important primer paint step. We got Zinsser 123 Primer, which is mold and mildew resistant, a sealer, and a stain killer. Two coats of that bad boy and peeling should be a thing of the past. Day 1 to Day 2.
Day 3 to Day 4. This is the color we decided on: Fresh Mint, which is more blue than mint in my opinion. I was going for a daiquiri ice look. The first coat went up pretty dark, a little turquoisey even, so I cut the second coat with half a quart of the linen white we used on the kitchen. Perfection! Jeff cut it down even more for the ceiling, so while it's hard to tell from these pictures, the ceiling is lighter which makes for a nice gradation.

We thought the light blue would look really nice with the yellowish green hallway, and voila! It does.
Moral of the story? Painting is hard! Don't believe people when they say it's the easiest and cheapest thing you can do to transform the look of your house. I spent under $100 for everything (including our sassy new electrical sander!) so cheap it was I guess, but it was NOT easy. Think it will make me think twice before deciding to paint our bedroom? Nah...


Jerod and I discovered a wonderful farmer's market that is held every Wednesday in Belmont Shore, which ends just about the time we get home from work, meaning DEALS! For $7 I got a huge bunch of Queen Anne's Lace (my favorite filler flower), a ton of large patty pan squashes, a bunch of radishes, huge garlics and shallots. And Jerod got about a million peaches for a couple bucks. Bet he regretted that later in the evening...

I love IKEA. Have I ever mentioned that? Yes, I believe so. I remember being SO excited to go when I was little and we were visiting family in Norway and Sweden, before it came to the States. It was a whole new design aesthetic, and I loved it. The only sucky part was not being able to bring anything back with us! I got a few little treasures, but the furniture was a big fat NO. Anyways, I just went the other weekend and they have their new summer items. I got more cheap fabric, the same bird pattern that I got before but now with specks of green in it, and gray leaves. That one might become bedroom curtains.

And then check these out! A Swedish horse cake pan!! I made brownies in this sucker the afternoon that I bought it, to bring to Mandy and Seth's housewarming party. It made me laugh. The cookie cutters are also really bizarre. I was unaware Scandinavia had porcupines. More Norwegian than Swedish I think (since a whale is thrown in there) so I had to get them.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Play him off, cross-stitched keyboard cat.

For those of you that have never seen the hilarity that is "Play him off keyboard cat", click HERE.

I got an email from Subversive Stitching this weekend, alerting me to the new pattern. This one is so amazing, I'm actually going to do it myself, and not ask my mom to make it for me. Jerod wants to collaborate on the piece and rig it up to a motion sensor and speakers so the keyboard cat song will play when people walk in front of the cross stitch. He also suggested hanging it in the bathroom above the toilet so the next time Jeff drops his iPhone in the toilet, keyboard cat will play him off. Sad...

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Pottery Barn Lighting

Oh so tempted... I've obsessed over this chandelier from Pottery Barn ever since it first came out. I just love it so much. And now it's on special! I have no reason to buy it though, because Brian and Gina picked really cool lighting pieces for downstairs, and upstairs the fans are a godsend in the summertime. Boo. Someone else buy it please and then invite me over so I can stare at it for a few hours...

These are also super cool, and also on sale:

Sewing builds confidence!

I get to stay home tomorrow to sew. I... can't... wait.

Poster by the ever-talented Paul Overton of Dude Craft.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

She's still alive!

You know how fast cats wake up to full alertness from a seemingly deep sleep almost instantaneously when they get touched, or hear a loud noise, or Jeff walks into the room? I do, and that's why I freaked out last night when I woke up and saw Lily Mae passed out on my pillow above my head and when I tried to move her, she was floppy and her head lolled around in my hand. I gasped and said loudly "LILY'S DEAD!" which woke up both Jeff and Lily Mae. She looked unconcerned and opened her eyes groggily. Jeff laughed at me but said he would have been really sad if she actually had died. I stayed up for another ten minutes poking her periodically and monitoring her breathing. She was fine this morning though and followed me around the house until I left. Cats are weird.

Greenery on the Homestead

Our plants are thriving! I forgot to take pictures of our bathtub of succulents in the backyard and the ones that Jeff planted in the front yard, but bigger front yard projects are on the horizon so you'll see pictures soon. My edible flowers and herb garden seems to be quite happy in our sun room, but I'm afraid they're growing out of their corn husk planters. Some transplanting may be in order...

These are the staghorn ferns I've been wanting forever that Jen snagged for us at her nursery! Aren't they cool looking? They get to be massive so I'm glad they started out cute and petite.

Our trash cans took awhile to sprout up again but the microgreens, broccoli and basil seem to finally be coming along.


Round 2 on the basil = SUCCESS! Pesto everything, here we come.

MY mom cross-stitched this little beauty. It was a motivational message from the government during the world war, but it certainly applies to these times as well. I don't get overwhelmed easily I like to think, but when I do it's nice to take a deep breath and recite this.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Happy Anniversary!

Happy Anniversary to us! Jeff and I took off for Palm Springs on Sunday and spent the day plus most of Monday puttering around and doing rad things. It was a pretty constant 90 degrees there but it didn't feel so sweltering because of the wind. It was lovely.
Don't tell Jeff but the main reason I booked us a hotel for our anniversay in Palm Springs was so I could go to the Design Within Reach Annex on the main drag in P.S. It was great, except everything was discounted from an insane amount of money to a ridiculous amount of money. Like this amazing oversized desk lamp. This was our favorite piece in the store. I think it'd be hilarious on top of a desk. A really sturdy desk. It was discounted from like $9,000 to $4,900. A deal, but still too rich for our blood.
The Ace hotel was sooooo cool. We were thrilled with it from the very beginning. We highly recommend a stay here, but skip the restaurant if you're hungry.

This was our garden patio where we spent a lot of time. The room had double doors that opened on to it doubling your hotel room space. It was shaded and had a cool rocking chair and we enjoyed it thoroughly.
The room came with a vintage record player and some records which was a neat touch.

The room also came with a weird hobbit cape and walking staff. Bizarre...
The mini bar! Holy moly... we were about to dig in when we heard a knock at our door. Our front desk friend that checked us in brought us champagne on ice! It pays to drop hints about how it's your first anniversary and how excited you are to spend it at the Ace hotel and my oh my, I can't wait to celebrate with a toast. :)
So instead of the King's Highway restaurant, go to Las Casitas on Palm Canyon Road. We had an awesome lunch here. The huevos rancheros were superb and the house margaritas were delightful. Jeff snapped the picture right after my first sip which was pretty much straight tequila. Oy!
Presents!! I have the best hubby in the world! Jeff went on a little Anthropologie spending spree for me and got me this adorable wooden elephant bottle opener whom I have named Sharon, the best smelling candle in the world (angel food cake), and the Domino book! My mom beat him to the punch on that one and gifted me the Domino book for Christmas, but it's the thought that counts. The thought and the gift receipt that will let me exchange it for another Anthropologie treasure!
The hotel had a bunch of fireplace nooks all around the grounds so we stopped and enjoyed the roaring flames for awhile after dinner.
This one is for my Mutha. Word.
Jeff tried to take me to the Living Desert to show me all of the rich people homes, but instead we got turned around at the rich people gates.
On the way home to Long Beach, we stopped in Cabazon to see the dinosaurs and the outlets! I wanted to see the dinosaurs and Jeff was all about the outlets, obviously.
Remember in Pee Wee's Big Adventure when they went up in this thing!? That was the coolest. We were going to also but it was $5 each and we had no cash. Ah well, next time.

When we got home we broke out our toasting glasses from the wedding (thanks Mom!), popped open the Sofia we didn't get a chance to drink, and toasted to a successful year of marriage now under our belts.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Thanks friends!

I was spoiled with special treats this week. My friend Lynne sent me a mailed hello and Jerod made me a package for work. It was awesome. I have to stay late at work tonight helping to write a huge $15 million grant that needs to be FedEx'd out tomorrow and while I'm waiting on specific pieces to get completed, there's a little downtime. A perfect time to COLOR! I was just saying this week how I missed coloring in coloring books. The last time I did was a brain anatomy book in college. I was obsessed with that thing. Every cranial nerve and neuron component had to be color-coded and colored inside the lines. And it wasn't even for a class! Anyways, he bought me crayons and printed out line drawings from my favorite artist (besides Jeffy!)- Charlie Harper. So rad!
Yeah, that lasted about 10 seconds. As soon as it was delivered and he was out of my office, I tore into that sucker. 
Lynne's note in the back and all my goodies from Jerod. He included two Pocket Coffees which Guia brought back with her from Italy. Only the Italians would put rocket fuel disguised with an espresso flavor inside dark chocolate. Those are REALLY saved for emergencies. And a stick of gum of course.
My finished masterpieces, now displayed in Jerod's 2/3's cubicle. 

Thanks friends!