Monday, January 31, 2011


I keep going back to these Kate Spade beauties to see if they've been magically discounted 75%. Aren't they gorgeous? The color, the heel, the lace... With bright red nail polish on the little piggies, just perfection. I didn't end up getting those Swedish Hasbeens either, because it feels crazy to spend money on shoes I don't need (note the italics, need is a relative word in my vocabulary) and with a garage renovation and baby being the major money sucks right now. It's nice to post them though, and pretend I'm buying them.

A little garden progress...

We replanted our raised bed with rainbow lights swiss chard, red cabbage, asian cabbage, broccoli, brussel sprouts, and garlic at the beginning of the month and everything is looking strong and healthy, thanks to this amazing SoCal winter weather we've been having. The rainstorms filled up our rain barrel and we've been watering this bed with that and the plants are thriving in the sunshine and cold mornings. Here's the before, right after the sad little Home Depot seedlings went in:

And the shot from a few days ago, opposite direction (don't mind the one-eyed gorilla):

Looks like we're going to have a bountiful harvest... Another addition we made to the garden is a second compost bin. The large one is just about done (our scraps made beautiful compost!) but of course we're constantly generating more scraps to put in it, so we bought a smaller matching tub ($7 from Target, deal city considering how much real "composters" cost at garden centers), drilled holes in the top and bottom, threw in some of the done compost, added our scraps from the kitchen compost bin, and voila! 2nd composter. Now I can amend my soil freely when things are looking low. 

And look at our succulents! We snagged a couple little succulent roses from Grammie's garden when we were up north and planted them here to see if they'd propagate, and boy did they. Tons! These will get replanted in the front yard so we can keep the little succulent factory going.

Next up on my outdoor list is to fertilize our orange tree and Linus the lemon tree, plant my craespedia seeds (aka billy balls!), and plant the porcelain vines Mandy gave me as a birthday gift! The porcelain vines are super invasive apparently but oh so beautiful, so I'm going to plant them in our window boxes where they can be managed appropriately. Fingers crossed for this:

(Image From Saipua)

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

How is crib bedding more expensive than MY bedding??

Crib bedding is ridiculously expensive. And unnecessary! Aren't crib bumpers and blankets supposed to be SIDS risks?? So... don't you just need fitted sheets and a sleep sack? I'm confused about all these crazy expensive bedding sets for mini people. I shun them. I want cute organic sheets so I think I'll just make them. I looked up some patterns online and they seem easy enough. And I can use my stash of pretty vintage fabrics! This one from Etsy seller RoosterLegs is super adorable though, I love the patchwork!

I was thinking about changing tables too... we're keeping and refinishing Jeff's old dresser (his childhood one) for the baby's room and I was thinking we could just put a changing pad on top of that but it would be at my chest level which seems like it might be awkward to change a baby on. Yes? No? Maybe I'll practice with a stunt baby to see if it'll work. If not, I think the Edland 3-drawer dresser from IKEA would be pretty sweet:

The color matches the crib and the legs and pulls are a little girly but not too precious. And more storage for all those cloth diapers and wipies and baby butt supplies is always helpful! We shall see. 

Sweet relief...

The headache is finally going away. Yesterday and today were pretty good and it seems to get better by the hour. I went for a massage yesterday after work and it made all the difference. My upper back was killing me so I decided to cash in my Groupon (only $35 for a full body hour long massage!) and git 'er done. It would have been bad the night before because my head was still throbbing (and face down in that head cradle would NOT have been comfortable) but last night was just right. I floated out of there.

It was the perfect storm of a cold, pregnancy hormones, conference stress, and being tired that just murdered my head. I'm going to need to start watching how I feel a little closer and to take more breaks when those warning signs appear. Or just go get a weekly massage. :)

Thanks everyone for all the worrying and phone calls and sweet comments wishing me to get better!

Monday, January 24, 2011

I hope this doesn't go to her head...

Lily Mae was featured on the Desire To Inspire blog this morning in their "Monday Pets on Furniture" series! The Apartment Therapy photographer, Bethany Nauert, submitted these shots (similar to the AT ones but different pictures) to the blog series and they were up live this morning. Poor thing looks terrified in the first picture, but honestly, she kind of looks like that most of the time. It's just her face.

Do you think we should get her an agent? I always thought she would be a good model, staring intently always, and her whole bulimia thing...

Friday, January 21, 2011

Nothing else to do but online shop!

Sooo... headache is still here. :( The Excedrin helps a lot but only lasts about 4 hours max and I can only take it once a day so there are still a lot of unhappy hours. Sigh.

So what else is there to do while lying still on the couch? I shopped around for clothes, baby goodies, read my reader, and bookmarked a lot of stuff. Virtual window shopping though because the credit card was in my wallet in the other room and I couldn't get up. It's better though. No impulse buying when sick!

Like these, don't need at all but want:

Retro Industrial Storage Units. I love the color, the wood tops, and the latched storage boxes. Sadly, nowhere to put these...

Kusaki Puff towels. The pigments come from plants and they're made from super absorbent and soft organic cotton. Love those little puff dots. Maybe we do need these... the baby will need towels!

Both from Viva Terra...

Thursday, January 20, 2011

15 weeks 5 days

The baby was doing a little downward facing dog for us today at the ultrasound, which made it a bit tricky to get good pictures but it was still fun to see. Annnnnd... the doctor is 90% sure that the peanut is a girl! Fun!! She's growing well and our triple screen results came back in the normal range so we're very happy, and can't wait for the anatomy ultrasound in 4 more weeks.

Not as smooth is this migraine I've had for the past three days. And yes, it has to be a migraine because I threw up twice last night (right after typing that I hadn't barfed yet, jinxing myself). But thanks to Nikki and Mandy's advice (thanks guys!) and my wonderful husband doting on me, I'm starting to feel better. Oh, and also maybe from the Excedrin Migraine I'm now allowed to take with blessings from my OB. Like magic. It still hurts when I get up to walk around or move my eyes to the far left or right, but at least the constant throbbing is gone. The humidifier is great (no more snot!) and my furry little purring hot water bottle is also making the bed rest more comfy. 

Here's to hoping Friday brings a full day of sweet relief...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


This is not good times. I'm going on hour 42 of the worst headache of my life. Is this what a migraine feels like? I asked Jeff to hang up dark towels over our bedroom windows to make the room cave-like and tolerable because when I get out of bed or see bright light, my frontal and temporal lobes pulse and I hate life. I'm not getting the aura thing though, and not at all nauseous (I made a giant fruit smoothie for breakfast and had Jeff pick me up double decker bean tacos for lunch and wolfed it all down), but this headache is impervious to Tylenol and my allowed one cup of coffee today. Thankfully the Tylenol worked yesterday morning for me as we wrapped up our annual Imaging Genetics conference that I coordinate for work. This was somewhat good, and probably expected, timing for a cold and headache to come on since I usually take a day or two off after the conference to wind down, but still is unwelcome.

I don't know if it's a congestion headache (I got a cold over the weekend and yesterday was bad on my sinuses but I'm much clearer today) or related to the pregnancy, but it SUCKS. Any recommendations are very welcome and appreciated because I rarely get headaches and don't know what else to do besides curl up and whimper underneath my lavender and flax eye pillow.

My brief respite from the throbbing today came during my shower which I was dreading. It was hard to get up and make it over to the bathroom but the second I stepped into the steamy water, the headache was gone. I would have stayed there all day if we weren't in a drought. Maybe I need a humidifier? Do those help headaches? This one is cute. This one though is available at my local Target and I'm all about safety first. I'll send Jeff.

The other great part about my shower was my new Yes to Carrots body wash. It smells sooo good. I have the Yes to Cucumbers shampoo and conditioner and those are fantastic too. Paraben free and with lots of natural ingredients, not to mention pretty and witty packaging which I'm a sucker for. I'm all over their baby products too as soon as the peanut arrives. I like the nose gunk wipes especially.

Back to sleep...

Monday, January 17, 2011

Greater Long Beach

Sweet! We got a shout out on! Thanks Brian for the Facebook heads-up!

Room for baby...

This will be a work in progress for the next 5 months but it's fun to start scheming ideas. Here is the little inspiration board I've put together so far:

This one is assuming we'll have a girl. If we have a boy (which we would also be thrilled about), the wall color would change from that pink to maybe a light orange. The bird mobile and fabrics would also be toughened up a bit. 

So the must haves for a nursery are a crib and a comfy lounge chair. Two exciting big furniture purchases. I've of course done a ton of internet searching for my favorites and for the crib, the hands-down winner for me with nothing even in second place, is the Caravan Crib by Kalon Studios. I love that it's made locally, is made out of sustainably harvested maple wood, uses no-VOC paint on the bars (we like the charcoal gray), and it converts to a toddler bed with no additional conversion kit. AND it was one of the cheaper options of all the cribs I was looking at out there. Just perfect. 

The lounge chair I was a little torn over but now my mind is made up. I thought it would have to be a glider which I must admit are so incredibly comfortable, but I was disappointed with the appearance of most of them. So many of them are just generic looking, and scream "I BELONG IN A NURSERY!" Not what I'm looking for when I think about dropping hundreds of dollars on a chair. Or a thousand and change for the ones that don't look like the generic nursery glider! I'd like the chair to leave the baby's room after the nursing thing is over, and replace the dying pink chair in our living room with it so it has to have style longevity. So what chair have I been lusting after for over ten years, is super comfy, has definite style, and won't break the budget? The appropriately named Womb chair and it's matching ottoman. Or more specifically, a reproduction of the Womb chair. An authentic one costs over $4K. !!!! Yeah, no. Maybe one day when Jeff's paintings sell for a million dollars each. For now, we can afford a reproduction that to me seems like an identical copy for around $675 for the chair and ottoman. Still expensive, but considering how much I'll be sitting in it with the peanut and how many times I will admire it when I'm in its presence, it's worth it.

The bench with the bright green velvet cushion is from Urban Outfitters and seems like a lovely place to take a nap with the baby and to cozy up on. Love the color.

The gray knitted pouf is from CB2 and brings some crocheted craftiness to the space. It will be nice and soft too for the baby to pull itself up on when it learns how to stand!

The paint color I'm copying from Young House Love's new fabulous nursery because it sounds like exactly what I would want for a little girl room. Light pink that leans towards the gray/lavender tones. It's called Proposal and is from the Benjamin Moore Affinity line (that I'll get color matched in a non-VOC paint, maybe Mythic again). I'll test out some swatches when the time comes but this is a front runner. 

And once I get my sewing machine fixed, I'm going to of course go crazy with the pillows and curtains, and sheets etc. I love the look of mixing vintage flowery sheeting fabrics and have been collecting those so I have plenty to choose from. I love this felt bird mobile I saw on the Purl Bee blog and would like to make something similar. Maybe Siamese cats instead of birds... hmmm... 

So that's where my day dreaming has been lately! Until we get that garage renovation underway and start clearing out the studio stuff from the soon-to-be nursery, I'm going to have to be patient. Sigh. 

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Baby shower arrangements!

Check out the arrangements Mandy and I did this morning for a baby shower on our We Like Flowers blog!

Crum watching us arrange flowers and basking in the 82 degree sunny SoCal weather...

Happy birthday brother!

We celebrated Jan's 33rd birthday at one of our favorite Long Beach restaurants, La Parolaccia. So dang good!! I had a work farewell party earlier in the evening so I had already eaten but it's impossible not to order anything there so I got an arugula, radicchio, and shaved parmesan salad and creme brulee for dessert. A really good decision on my part.

The birthday boy ever-so-daintily dipping his biscotti into his honey flavored Italian dessert wine:

All creme brulee should come with raspberry sauce drizzled on top. Yum.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Influential Element

The Long Beach Museum of Art opens their "Influential Element: Exploring the Impact of Water" show tonight and it runs until April 3rd. Check it out! Jeff has a piece for sale in the show, here it is:

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A 2010 recap

2010 was such a cool year for us! I wanted to do a little recap of the special moments so I have an annual summary of what's going on in our lives. I browsed through the 247 (!!) posts that I did on this blog in 2010 and picked out the important events and listed them by month. And so it goes...

Our offer on our house was accepted!! Yay! Then two weeks later the house we were living in was robbed. Sad scared face.

After 4 months of back and forth with the banks, lenders, and our fabulous realtor,  we bought our home!

Jeff did his first home owner renovation project and installed this floor.

Jeff and I celebrated our five year (dating) anniversary!
Mandy and I did the flowers for our first big wedding that wasn't one of our own!

We wallpapered our dining room!

The flowers we did for Kelsey and Jake's wedding were featured on LA Style Unveiled!

I signed up to be a bone marrow donor through Be The Match.
Jeff and I celebrated our two year wedding anniversary!
Mandy and I "officially" launched our freelance floral design business, We Like Flowers!

Someone crashed into me and I lost my poor Sparkles, but thankfully no one was hurt and I got a shiny new Prius!

We had a kick ass housewarming party and tagged up our backyard wall!

I took my first flower arranging class series with Mandy. Fun!
Jeff finished the Mockingbird piano and Juxtapoz did an interview with him about it!

We went camping with awesome friends...
We Like Flowers did the flowers for a photo shoot for the Southern Weddings blog, directed by the fabulous Lindye Galloway!

We went to NorwayDenmark, and Sweden!

Jeff launched his new and improved website...
Poor Lily Mae (a.k.a. Chicory) had to have surgery, but thankfully rebounded pretty quickly.

Jeff turned 33 and we threw him an awesome rock n' roll birthday party!

The Giants won the World Series and we found out that we're having a baby on the same night!
We hosted Thanksgiving at our house and I turned 31!

Jeff launched his pet portraits website, Dog Cat Jeff!

And we had a lovely Christmas at home with our families.

Such a good year! And 2011 is shaping up to be even better. What a lovely little life...

Swedish Hasbeens

I want, nay, need these shoes. They seem like great pregnancy heels. Does one buy oneself a present to congratulate them on their own pregnancy? It seems reasonable to me.

Huffington Post

Cool! Our Apartment Therapy house tour was featured in the Real Estate section of the Huffington Post! Not so cool are the comments. AT commenters = wonderful and kind. Huffington Post commenters = jerks. Some A-hole called us a "non-descript couple showing off their non-descript home"! He must be quite the style maven...

Monday, January 10, 2011


Jan got me an awesome Moleskine recipe journal for my birthday and I'm slowly filling it with our favorite everyday recipes that are easy to make for dinner. A lot of recipes that I use for dinner parties are ripped out of Sunset magazine and others so those go in a binder, but my mom had passed down a number of her yummy recipes (she makes THE best soups, I'm going to have to do a few of those soon) and those are all over the place. I'm trying to consolidate all my recipes into the journal so that on the weekends we can flip through the book and pick out dinners for the week.

Tonight was spaghetti with a spicy red clam sauce and an arugula, pepper and shaved parmesan salad. Deeelish! I've seen a bunch of ways to make this but I think mine is the easiest, fastest, and tastes pretty damn good.

I puree the tomato basil sauce because Jeff doesn't like the "rat hearts", then I mix that into 4 minced cloves of garlic sauteed in a few tablespoons of olive oil for a few minutes. I dump in the juice from one of the cans of clams, sprinkle in a bunch of pepper, bring to a boil and then simmer on low for 15 minutes. Then add in the three cans of drained chopped clams (I prefer chopped to minced because I like chewing the clams), stir it up and serve over pasta! Easy.

And I'm pregnant, so of course there is dessert. This is another one of my mom's passed down recipes, that I grew up on. I looooove peanut butter popsicles. She started making these when we were little and sick and didn't want to eat. It's kind of impossible not to want to eat these though. And they're nutritious too, full of protein and calcium. I lost my popsicle molds in the move so instead I'm just making ice cream. Even easier. 

To make them, you start with a cup of yogurt and dump it into a blender. I like the fruit on the bottom yogurts, especially a berry, because then they end up tasting like a PB&J popsicle. This time though I used Greek yogurt on my mom's suggestion. So creamy. Using the empty yogurt container, measure out a container full of milk (I use soy milk- turns out great), and a container full of peanut butter. My mom puts in a 1/3 of a cup of honey but I just do a couple long squirts, so probably half that. If you use a sweetened yogurt, I think you could even skip the honey, especially if you're making it for a baby. I poured it into a glass container and I'm counting down the minutes until I can dig in...

lemlem for livliv

I saw these on Oh Joy! today and t'was love at first sight. I want that hot pink poncho and gauzy dress so bad. They'd be so perfect for our trip to Hawaii, and just about everywhere else. They're perfect bathing suit coverups, and then after Hawaii I'd rock a unitard underneath the see-through dress and tanks under the poncho. I'm going to spend the rest of the day looking for focus groups on cat products so I can make some mad money to make these appear in my suitcase.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Zee bump- 14 weeks

I want a little photographic evidence of the growing bump, especially for the family and friends that don't get to see me every week. I'm not showing that much yet (and I just got back from Mark's party where I ate a bunch of baby carrots, two pieces of pizza and a cookie/brownie so maybe this is more that than baby) but we need to start with a sort of baseline photo. This will be my bump shot shirt so I can make a flip book later.

A request from Psychoboy...

Someone posted a comment on our AT house tour asking for pictures of the painting Jan did of Dolores O'Riordan that was listed in the resources but didn't make it into the actual house tour photo selection. Here you go Psychoboy!

This is in my sewing room, and the cabinet is a vintage lab cabinet from the University of California that I found at a thrift shop in San Pedro. The donkey bank came from Tijuana, the lamp is an old Martha Stewart lamp (from the 90's), and the two paintings were done by my brother back in high school I think. I always liked them and asked if I could have them when I moved out and they've come with me to every house I've lived in.

Here's a wider shot of the full cabinet and my mess of finished sewing projects with no home. I forgot who did the little monster painting. I'll ask Jeff when he comes back and will update this later with the artist's name. And here's an up close of the O'Riordan painting. She's in an Absolut bottle that Jan not-so-secretly snuck his name into.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

By the way...

We're not going to be on TV. Sad face. Apparently Jeff and I were too smart, and answered the questions correctly so the editors cut our segment. We were charming, but I guess they didn't really want us to know what APR stood for, or where your wenus is (it's your elbow skin). Suck it, Oprah.

Details, details...

Okay, that light fixture in the bathroom has to go. I don't really like the sconce in our bedroom above our closet either, so that'd also be nice to replace. Why stop there!? The one in the hallway also doesn't really go with the house, and the ones in the kitchen are boring. We're probably not going to be able to replace everything at once, but at least if I have a plan I can do it in baby steps.

In order of priority, bathroom comes first. I did a lot of online hunting and realized, there are a whole lot of bad bathroom light fixtures out there. I want something modern and unique, and bathroom friendly. Barn Light Electric is the coolest. It's the only place I found that had several choices that I liked. The top runner though is this one:

I love the cages, but the black I think is too strong for our pink/wood/yellows/orange bathroom. Maybe not though. I'm going to have to sleep on it. I also like it in "vanilla cream" but maybe that's boring. Either way, frosted glass for sure. 

The one in the bedroom is a little tricky... it needs to complement the Anzfer Farms sconces by our bed, and the milk glass lamp on the dresser which are two pretty different styles. I think the solution is to go with clean lines and keep it simple. I bought one from IKEA recently ($12!) that I think will be lovely. I'll post that swap out when Mike the Electrician comes to do the studio.

After the lighting gets taken care of, next on my wish list will be matching doorknobs throughout the house. I found these on this blog and fell in love. A little pricey but at least we don't have too many to replace (6) so I'll start saving up (or sell one of Jeff's Be@rbricks).

 It's all in the details!

Friday, January 7, 2011

A few weeks... or TODAY!!

The Apartment Therapy folks emailed me this morning to give me the heads-up that our house tour was going live this morning!! Check it out here: Liv, Jeff and the Friendly Yeti Sharing a Home.

These were my favorite pictures:

And a few D'OH! moments...The cord on the lamp above on Jeff's dresser. That's always tucked behind the dresser, and yeah, that stuff bothers me. The dead lightbulb in the bathroom which I should have replaced but I really want to change that stupid light fixture so the dead lightbulb is my incentive to get it done. My bangs. My outfit for that matter. I have cuter clothes. I also wish the Andrew Brandou piece and my vanity were included but everything else is so cool! Bethany takes amazing photographs, and Marcia edited the shoot really well. And I'm so happy Lily Mae made appearances!! She's my favorite accessory.