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..A Life That is Good..



working mom. wife to JEGs. Lover of pretty things. Hater of technology.



Updated: 2018-01-15T11:34:20.741-05:00

 



The State of My Living Room

2016-01-19T20:18:06.407-05:00

At one point, this is what my living room looked like: ...like a dorm room full of hand-me-down furniture.I kept saying I was going to refinish the side table, coffee table, and chair when the weather got warmer.  Well, time passed and I finally decided to get to gettin'.I decided to start with the side table.   Let me tell you, I had a devil of a time finding a table to fit this area.  Our couch is very deep, the space between the couch and wall is not very wide and I needed storage, so I was looking for something very specific.  I had been scouring Craigslist and thrift stores to no avail. One day I was paruzzing Target's website (like I do pretty much every day) and I stumbled upon this little gemEven though it was technically a console table, if I turned it to the side, the length and width were basically exactly what I was looking for.  I showed it to JEGs, and at  first he was all "I can build that" and I said "...ok, but WILL you build it" and he bascially said "eeehhh... let's order it". I love it when he lets me do what I want.I used my Target RedCard and got an extra 5% off and free shipping so I knocked the price down to about $53 and some change shipped.  Boom. Because of the price, we were hesitant about it, but we were pleasantly surprised that this table is 100% real wood, and it's pretty solid.  Our only beef was it was too tall, and we didn't like how low the shelf was.  JEGs took the saw to the legs and lobbed off a couple of inches to make it a better height for our couch.  Since the shelf was only held up with brackets, we moved it up to a little moreLike I said, this is made of legit wood, you guys!For about six months we kept it the natural wood.  I liked the lightness of it, but my plans for the chair and the coffee table are to go lighter and I felt like something needed to balance out the darkness of the stairs and fireplace.  Andplusalso, the natural wood seemed to blend into the couch and rug.  I wanted it to pop some more.The coffee table and chair were the same color, and  even though I didn't plan for them to stay that color, I did really like the tone of the stain.  I stopped at Lowes and snagged  a small can of Minwax stain.  I don't know what makes it sooooooo  much better than the other walnuts out there, but it's schuper schpecial.After pouring myself the necessary glass of Cabernet, I got down to it.  Normally I would recommend doing this outside, but I am impatient and decided to stain in the kitchen on a Friday night.  Since we had been using it for about six months as is, I gave it a good sanding to scrub off all the gunk it had acquired.  I opened all the windows for ventilation and put the table on a piece of cardboard. The directions mention it can be left on between 5-15 minutes before wiping, but I opted for the lesser time to control the color. It only took about two coats (three coats in some spots) but I am really happy with the outcome. The shelf is perfect for holding our "snuggle blanket" along with a pile of my magazines (that one day I will hopefully get to read).  We also have a little box that corrals all of our coasters and remotes.Underneath we have enough space to tuck in three IKEA SAMLA containers of Hunter's cars, LEGOs and other various toys. One down... two more to go...Always & Forever,  ME[...]



Christmas Tour 2015

2015-12-30T17:05:25.559-05:00

Instagram: LifeThatIsGoodWe have nothing coming up in the next two weeks, and I am totally ok with this.  We are  rounding out three weeks of insanity with me working at the chopper, holiday parties, my cousin visiting for a week, lots of drinking, more chopper work and the holidays. Not to mention Hunter, Tessa and I have been passing around a cold back and forth for two weeks.We had a great holiday-  Hunter was totally spoiled by Santa and family, as was Tessa.  Christmas Eve was spent at my parents house for a big turkey dinner and gift exchange with my family.  JEGs made the most amazeballs cannolis from scratch.  When we got home, Hunter was super psyched to put out cookies and milk for Santa.Tessa was trying to snatch the cookies for herself...Christmas morning Hunter tore through his gifts and then we headed over to my in-laws where Hunter opened 29479274287 more gifts and I cooked my first Christmas dinner. It was also my turn to have the head cold, so that was awesome. Ya'll I am tired.  JEGs and I don't have anything planned for New Year's Eve except a steak dinner and maybe a bottle of red wine.  I can't even promise I'll make it to midnight. This is me, firmly planted in my 30s. Anyway, I thought I would do a quick holiday tour of the house.  We keep the decorations up until January 8th; my mom always did for Three Kings Day, but also JEGs' family celebrates Ukrainian Christmas on January 7th.The outside got the usual garland strung from the porch and lights around the trees.  I took this picture the week before Christmas when our neighborhood did a luminaries night. Mother Nature was brutal to my decorations this year.  We haven't had any snow, but it has been super windy, so I have been collecting my decorations from my neighbor's driveway daily.  I added some seasonal throw pillows to our rocking chairs.  The HO HO HO pillow came from the Dollar Spot at Target a couple years ago and the buffalo plaid pillow came from Joann's this year.  The bigger pillows I made years ago from a table cloth.I snagged a galvanized bucket from the Dollar Spot this year and added some burlap and satin ribbon.  My mom and I got clippings from a tree farm for free, so I arranged  them to the bucket.My trusty vintage sled is propped up next to the mail box and I planted poinsettias in the pot with more free clippings to fill in. The mantel got a little bit of a make under this year.  Instead of swagging the garland in the front, I sat it back behind everything. Some candle sticks and faux trees anchored the space.This year I wanted it to be all about the stockings.  Since we got to add a fourth stocking this year for Tessa, I had to retire my JOY stocking holders.  Pottery Barn had this really sweet Santa sleigh and reindeer set that I loved, but at $40 per stocking holder, I was having a hard time making the commitment.  Then I found these adorable reindeer holders at Target for $10 each and I was sold. The red ornaments from years past were retired and new gold (shatter proof) ornaments took their place on our tree along side our wood and felt (unbreakable ornaments).I did add a new ornament to commemorate our family trip to Maine at the end of AugustMore garland up the banister.  I love me some twinkle lights.When I was finished decorating the living room, I had a bunch of stuff left over that I really love but didn't have a place for; my twine trees, Justin's favorite Ark of the Covenant deer and my manger set.  The only answer was to set them all on the buffet with some more free clippings.  I added the chalkboard behind it because I was feeling sassy.  That's just how I do.  Feelin' sassy, add a chalkboard. I hope your New Years is as eventful or uneventful as you hoped.  From our family to yours, Happy New Year!Always & Forever,  ME[...]



Santa Babies 2015

2015-12-23T21:51:52.393-05:00

It's that time of year again!  Time to shell out twenty-five bucks for a picture of your kids sitting on a stranger's lap.  It's Mall Santa Time!!!Ok, so there is Tessa.  But where is Hunter you ask?  Well, that's fun story, so settle in with a snack and I shall share with you.One Friday afternoon, JEGs took a half day off work so we could take the chitlins to see Santa.  Hunter was super psyched.  When we told him what we were doing, he started jumping up and down with excitement.  So we wait in line and talk about what he is going to ask Santa (the Stellosphere, in case you are wondering), but when it is our turn to sit on his lap, Hunter won't go up to him and walks away.  He isn't scared, he isn't crying, he just refuses.  We try to coax him, but he is not interested.  Thinking he is being is normal stubborn, 4-year-old self, we get Tessa's picture taken and call it a day.Later that evening, JEGs is putting the monster to bed, and he asks him why he didn't want to sit on Santa's lap and the kid bursts out crying.  He starts saying Santa looked angry because the Elf on the Shelf told Santa that Hunter hasn't been a good listener and Hunter was scared Santa would be mad at him.You guys.... we don't even have an Elf on the Shelf.  Right after Thanksgiving we talked about getting one because Hunter has been mouthy lately.  (Oh 4.  What a fun fun age.  #sarcasmfont).  But being the super cheap skate that I am, I didn't want to shell out $30 for one.  So we mentioned a couple times that the Elf might show up, but that was it.  Of course we are completely heart broken that he was this upset over something we didn't even have, so I took him back to a different Santa- with the explanation that Santa goes to different malls every day- so he could tell him he was going to work on being a good boy... and he would like the Stellosphere.I asked him if he wanted to have his picture taken with Tessa, and he said no because she already had her own picture.  I figured that was fair enough.  So for 2015 Hunter is getting is final singular picture with Santa, because I sure as hell am not spending $50 on pictures with Santa again. Always & Forever,  ME[...]



DIY Burlap Bow

2015-12-09T16:46:30.137-05:00

I had these two wreaths that hung in my kitchen windows over the buffet that I was procrastinating in putting up.  I felt like they needed a little something, but I didn't know what.  So they sat on my kitchen island for over a week.This afternoon I was on a mission to clear off the counter tops, so it was decision time.My first step was to give Tessa a teething biscuit to occupy her.  I was in Target last week (you know, for a change, right?) and I snagged this burlap ribbon from the Dollar Spot.  Six feet for a dollar?  I'll take three, thankyouverymuch.I busted out my bow making skills from my cheerleading days and made two rustic burlap and twine bows for the wreaths.First, I cut a section of the ribbon.  I used a 30 inch length, but you can do whatever size makes your heart happy.  I folded one side over, maybe 10- 12 inches.Then I folded the other side over about 10-12 inches.  Again, you can adjust if you want a bigger or smaller bow.  I picked up my folded ribbon where it crossed over and pinched it shut.  You can start to see it taking the shape of a bow nowI still have twine laying around from this post, so I cut an 18 inch length to use for my middle.  I wrapped it around twice at first, so I could adjust as needed.   Once I was happy with the placement, I wrapped it around more timesI tied it in the back, leaving some extra twine to tie it onto the wreath. Tada!It took me less than 15 minutes to create two bows  Super easy!...and then I remembered I gave the baby a biscuit and now I had to clean up that holy mess.  She is smiling because she knows I am about to find the soggy chunk of biscuit that fell on her lap.  Surprise Mom!Always & forever,ME[...]



*Taps Mic* Anyone out there?

2015-12-07T19:08:39.109-05:00

Well, hey.

Remember me?  I'm Lizzie AMY, and I used to write this blog.

I know, I know, it's been a while since I dusted off the old keyboard.  I've been wanting to come back, but I always felt I needed a big long explanation post, and a completely new look on the page.

Welps, I've got a new look, so that's something right?

As far as an explanation, I don't have much, except this:


That handsome monster of mine, and his sister.

Yup, that's right;  my little girl, Tessa Louise.

Long story short: my life has changed a lot in the past year and a half.  After dealing with fertility issues, we were finally blessed with our little girl born at 34 weeks on March 26, 2015.  She spent two weeks in the NICU and came home on April 10, 2015.

In the months during her pregnancy, JEGs and  I decided that once she was born I would leave my full time job as a camera operator  for a news helicopter and focus on my real estate career.  I still work at the helicopter here and there if a full time employee wants to take a day off.  I also picked up a part time gig as an event coordinator for a local distillery.

So here I am, a 34 year-old, work-from-home mom of two.  A far cry from the 27 year-old girl who started this blog.

Why am I back?  I missed blogging.  I missed having that creative outlet.  But also I realized that almost every moment of Hunter's first year was documented on this blog. I love being able to look back at his monthly posts and remember what he was like, and how I was feeling.  Tessa is about to turn 9 months old, and this has been the absolute fastest year of my life.  I am afraid that if I don't document it, I won't remember anything.  So mostly, I am doing this for Tessa.

No promises on how often I will post, mostly when the mood strikes me-- or when time allows me.  Which, let's be honest, is more likely.

Always and Forever,
  ME



Identity Crisis.

2014-04-01T16:37:05.212-04:00

 You guys, I am having a serious identity crisis.

As you can tell, the crickets and tumble weeds have taken over Lizzie in Progress. Some of it has come from general life stuff taking up my time, but a lot of it is coming from I have no idea what I want this blog to be anymore.

I read this fantastic post from Rambling Renovators that basically talks about the shift in the blog world in the past year or so.  When I started blogging in 2009, it was all about commenting on other blogs and creating friendships through following/followers.  Now its all about Pins, Tweets and Instagram.  A lot of my favorite bloggers have turned their blog into a business, and while I think that is fantastic for them,  I find myself weary of reading nearly every post is sponsored by so-and-so.  Give aways have become work too:  it used to be a comment on the post.  Now I have to follow this person on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest , Twitter along with the eight other blogs they've joined up with.  Truth gun to my head, I just don't have that kind of time! But I see these blogs and I start to feel like I can't compete with their amazing renovations or perfectly planned parties.  In the back of my mind, I start to think... why bother?  I'm never going to be a powerhouse on Pinterest.  I'll never have 15K followers on Instagram.  If no one is commenting, then is anyone out there?

So consider this my mission statement:  I am never going to make money from this blog.  I realize that.  This is basically my personal diary of what is going on in my life. If I don't get any blog traffic, that's fine- I enjoy looking back in my archives and remembering what I was thinking at a certain point in my life.  That's why I started this.

As far as topics go, I am going to keep the same variety it's always been: sometimes JEGs and I will renovate a room.  Sometimes Hunter will say something cute and I need to share it with the world (it happens a lot, let's be honest).  If a friend has a beautiful wedding, I want to share it with everyone.  I will probably break out the glue gun and get all crafty up in this bish.  Sometimes I just want to talk about this amazing pair of shoes I found at Target.  I am a suburban mom who loves pretty things, and I don't want to be pigeon holed into one specific topic.

My plan is to revamp this blog.  Lizzie has progressed as far as she's going to go, and I am coming back as Amy.  I am going to give the whole blog a face lift, and I am going to really try to not succumb to the pressure of Pinterest and just do what I love- write about the shit that's going on in my little corner of the world.

I'll see you on the flip side.

Always & Forever,
  ME.



2013 in Review

2013-12-31T11:39:03.201-05:00

  I celebrated the New Year with some close friends in Cougarville, aka Michael's Cafe in Bensalem.  Never in my life did I have to worry about my husband being hit on by someone my mother's age.  Ew.   But we had a blast, got way too drunk a little tipsy and said hello to 2013.Our little community grew by 4 pounds 10 oz when our neighbor and dear friends Jenny and Greg welcomed their son, Townes Edward into the world.  Six months later, Hunter would begin a rivalry that would quickly dissolve. Hunter celebrated his second Valentine's Day with his sweetheart, Jenna, and I blogged about my Toddler Friendly Valentine's Day SnacksI was on the ball with the blog in February and blogged about giving up make up for Lent, our dresser turned buffet and did a review of our beloved HOVAS (still the most popular keyword for traffic)At 17 months, Hunter became a full-fledge, climbing, ornery toddler.After snagging a rug off Craigslist, I officially declared the nursery DONE                                     JEGs was able to sell his 2001 Jetta and purchased a much more reliable 2005 Subaru Legacyand in the same weekend, Hunter got himself a new set of wheels, too. We quietly celebrated Easter with Hunter's first egg hunt around the house (he kind of understood the concept), but the highlight of the weekend is when he got to visit Mommy at work and see all the planes and helicopters.and in an epic showdown, we invited some neighborhood friends over for a Pizza-Off to determine the best pizza place in the area.  I still say Dante's won.March was also a rough month because my Uncle committed suicide in a very public manner on St. Patrick's Day.  It left me with a lot of unresolved anger towards him, but made me appreciate my family as we gathered around to support my mother and help settle his estate.Our Bubbers turned 18 months old and I couldn't believe that he was no longer my baby, he was a little boy now....especially when our pediatrician gave the ok to make his car seat forward facing.  I died a little inside that day.We realized around the beginning of the month that we weren't going on vacation this year, so I started taking random days off to use up my PTO.  JEGs and I took a random Monday off together and had, what we called, a "Pre-Baby Saturday"-- basically we did all the things that we would have done on a Saturday before Hunter was born.  We dropped him off at daycare, and went back to bed.  We slept until 10.  We grabbed lunch at a local Mexican joint.  I sipped margaritas with my quesadillas.  We came home and just leisurely laid around the house and were able to have an actual conversation.  The weather was unseasonably warm, and it was awesome.I also spent a hilarious night in West Chester, PA to celebrate the bachelorette party of my friend Whitney.  The night began with a champagne toast and ended with me bumping into my high school crush in front of a pizza place and asking him to protect me while I ate.  Yeah.  Three weeks later, Whitney married her gentleman caller, Max, in the most beautiful wedding I have ever attended.We spent Memorial Day weekend with some close friends, where Hunter tried to make some moves on 2-year-old CoraLater in the week we cleaned up the planting beds in the front yard and planted some hostas and impatiences with the help of my neighbor, Amy.With half the year gone, June was a busy month.  I shared my plans for the bedroom and continued my birthday tradition of painting a room to celebrate my 32nd year. Our little monster turned 20 months old, and was proving to be all boy                                        A memorial [...]



Falconhead Holiday House Tour 2013

2013-12-24T13:19:28.613-05:00

 Disclaimer:  this is the first time I am shooting in manual.  If the pictures suck.. well, deal with it.  I'm still learning..IT'S CHRISTMAS YOU GUYS!!!!!!!!!!Ermergherd I love Christmas so much.  This year I am so excited to share the holiday with Hunter.  The Saturday after Thanksgiving, we put the tree up during his nap.  When he came downstairs afterwards, he started saying "Oo! Itsa Christmas tree!!  It has yights (lights) on it!"  Every day he gets excited to "help"  Mommy plug in the lights.  This year, we were able to trust Hunter to not bring the Christmas tree crashing to the ground and set it up in the living room again (last year it was tucked away in the kitchen).   The living room is a lighted ball of festivityCan we be real for a second?  I am damn proud of this mantle.  Around Thanksgiving I started getting a vision in mind and this is exactly what I saw.  I love it so much.  I really wanted a simple, classic look with lots of sparkle.   I broke out my chunky candle sticks from Party Lite (no longer available).  And of course added my 'Ark of the Covenant' deer that JEGs loves so much (heavy sarcasm).In years past I've always gone very symmetrical, but this year I decided to add these BLOMSTER candle sticks from IKEA.  I.  LOVE.  THEM.  $14.99, y'all.  You can't beat that.   I am pretty sure these will never be put away.Our stockings are hung with care, each with a jeweled initial.  I love these stockings so much.  I might hit up the December 26th sale and grab one more.  You know, just in case...Last year, I couldn't find an H for Hunter's stocking, so I had this dinky pin.  I was so excited when Target brought these back this year, I snagged it-- *gasp*-- at full price.  I know.  I must have really wanted it. The garland was on the steps last year, but this year I wrapped it with some gold and silver ribbon  from Michael's. I would like to remind the class that the JOY stocking holders were free on Freecycle.  Winning.  Even though we moved the tree back into the living room, we still decorated with Hunter-proof ornaments.  We don't trust him that much.  Last year I invaded the Target after-Christmas clearance and bought all the felt and wood ornaments I could get my hands on.  I still have a couple that have sentimental value.  This is something I inherited from my mom.  It was always a favorite of mine growing up (probably because it's gold and covered in glitter).I also added DIY ornaments from the past like our glittered sea shells and this guy from 2010. We are trying to enforce the "one finger" rule with Hunter.  It kind of works...The banister got it's usual swag of garland and lights.Since my child is 100 ft tall and can reach all points of the kitchen table, I needed a durable centerpiece.  I  set my jute trees on a gold charger with some pine cones.  Rustic at it's finest.  The buffet got a make-under this year.  We hosted a holiday party this year, and I used that area for serving beverages.  I didn't want to have to deconstruct some elaborate set up for one night, so I went simple. with a linen table runner, two faux  trees in burlap, my other two candlesticks, and wreath in the windows. I also put our nativity set up front and center.I had this pine cone garland from last year leftover, so I quickly sat it on the window sill. Are you guys ready for some night time shots?  Again, first time in manual mode, so bare with me..Living roomKitchenextreme nativity... whooooaaaaJust the tree (I am having a devil of a time getting that start to stand up straight)...Wishing everyone a very happy and healthy holiday!Want to take a look at previous years?  Here is 2009, 201[...]



The Lazy Mom's Guide to Fall Decor.

2013-11-28T16:14:25.803-05:00

There is something about fallen leaves collected on patio furniture that I find slightly magical.  I don't get too excited specifically for Halloween and Thanksgiving decorations.  Truth be told, I could skip Thanksgiving altogether-- it's not my favorite holiday.   Ain't nobody got time for switching stuff up between September 1- December 1, so the name of the game is Longevity. We have a new addition on our  front porch in the form of a wicker sofa.  I snagged this little baby and a neighborhood yard sale a few weeks ago for $35.  It's still in great shape and came with a matching coffee table that is currently residing in our basement.  It looks so much better than the folding chairs that we bought when we moved in together.  They were great when we first got them, but 4 years later, they were looking used and abused. I added pillows that I made from a table clothes a couple years ago, along with our monogram pumpkin.  To this date, this is probably one of the DIY projects I am most proud of.These train lanterns came out of a family friend's basement. I have an unnatural love for them.  The glass table we've had for years (it came with the folding chairs), and the weather vain was something I picked up at a yard sale for a dollar when we first moved to Norristown.                              This wreath is probably one of my favorites.  I snagged it at Home Goods in 2011 and I love the simplicity of the twigs, leaves and wheat, but it still has the beauty of the single rose. I have a couple small gourdes scattered here and there, but this is the only thing I put thought into  in the house is the mantle. I love this leaf art.  JEGs found it in the back yard last spring.  We both loved how the only thing left are the veins, making it looks like a skeleton.  I matted it with some scrapbook paper and framed it.  I am secretly hoping to find more next spring so I could do an entire collage on a wall somewhere.Oh IKEA, how I love your ROTERA lanterns.  These were actually part of a table centerpiece of a wedding we went to in 2011.  I may or may not have snagged four that day.The greenery is actually party of a floral arrangement I got on clearance from Michael's and I just pulled it apart, sticking flowers and leaves in here and there. The large faux pumpkins were bought on clearance as well, and I am kicking myself for not getting two of the same size.  Or at least more. Our mantle wraps around towards our staircase, and it's a decorating conundrum to me.  It's very skinny and long, and I never know what to put there.  This time I popped a candle in the corner.  Boom.  Done.   Simple, to the point... now let's move this season along so I can get one with my Christmas decorations!Always & Forever,  ME[...]



Special Moments on Saturday Morning

2013-11-20T13:32:14.879-05:00

In September, Hunter moved into a new classroom and the teachers made a simple request:  bring in a family photo.You guys, it took me damn near a month to find a recent photo of the three of us.  The last one I had was from July 2012.  I had to fix this.So I called upon my favorite local photographer, Kelly Miller, to get some good family photos for us. She did Hunter's newborn shoot (and by 'newborn, I mean two months old, because that's how long it took me to get around to scheduling it), and I trust her to make us look good.  As always, she did not disappoint.  Kelly's really great at capturing the special every day moments, and just followed us around as Hunter ran around we explored this great spot she picked out.This is typical play in our house these daysAlso, I hope you'll notice his beautiful hair blowing in the wind as he runs.  I am NEVER CUTTING IT again.  Yeah, I am *that* mom, and I don't even care...and 30 minutes later, he was all played out.Again, so many thanks to Kelly Miller Photography.  She is so great to work with-- I cannot say enough good things about her.  If you are local to the Philadelphia area, I highly recommend checking her out.  I wish wish wish I had hired her for my wedding.Always & Forever,  ME[...]



Get Your Kicks on Route 66

2013-10-25T14:32:29.006-04:00

For Hunter's 2nd birthday, I kind of had to do a Cars theme.  The kid is mildly obsessed not only with all things motor vehicle, but the Disney movie as well.  After going all out for his first birthday, I wanted to keep things low key this year.  Just immediate family and neighborhood friends, I said.  We will keep it small, I said.  I should know better.  30 adults and 14 kids later, we had ourselves a guest list.  To keep costs down, I relied heavily on Dusty from All Things G&D and her list of free printables.  They were a life saver.For food, I kept it pretty simple with chicken fingers, macaroni and cheese (for the kids) and sandwich sliders and pasta salad for the adults.  I also added in some Chex Mix as something to nosh on the go.I snagged the sandwich sliders from our local grocery store, Giant.  It's the same place I got the 6ft hoagie last year, and man am I glad this is the route I went.  I thought about pizza, but the boxes take up so much room, and you never know if you have enough plain for everyone.  I didn't want to get another 6 ft hoagie because transporting it was a bitch, and so was cutting it into individual sizes.  With the sandwich platter I had a nice mix of chicken salad, egg salad, ham & cheese, roast beef & cheese and turkey & cheese on potato rolls.  They were a huge hit.Instead of having doing one big cake and having to cut it, I opted for more grab-and-go options of cupcakes (red velvet and strawberry), Twizzlers, and of course Luigis Casa Della tires made of  chocolate donuts. The pièce de résistance was in the back yard.  With 14 kids, and only 600 sq ft in our main living area, I wanted to have activites to keep them occupied.  I painted a couple boxes to match the characters Lighting McQueen, Chick Hicks and Strip "the King" Weathers.  I was all about just letting them run around the back yard willy nilly, but JEGs said "Oh no.  They need a race track".So a race track he did build.  Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the Falconhead 500I had to take the picture from Hunter's room so you could see the whole thingHe grabbed two cans of spray paint from Lowe's (the kind specifically made for lawns) and outlined the track in white.  Since our backyard is still a hot mess of monkey balls and super deep holes, he used orange spray paint as a way of letting the kids know they shouldn't be running in certain areas.  I had ordered 100 ft of checkered flag banner that we cut in half and strung across the yard from poles mounted to the fence.  Balloons and safety cones from Lowe's marked the Start/Finish line.This was such a huge hit for the kids!  Not only did they use the boxes, but they took any wheeled vehicle Hunter had for a spin around the track,  ran three-legged races and just chased each other around!  It was a great way to keep them occupied AND burned off energy!Abigail and Wyatt dominate the three-legged raceMy nieces Skylar and Bridget take Chick and the King for a spinHunter runs around with Lighting..but ultimately balloons win out.Gabe of Shannigans fame even made an appearance We sang Happy Birthday and finally let the kids pounce on the chocolate donuts they had been eyeing up all afternoonIn the 'Winners Circle' I had favor bags for the kids.  I glued VIP pit passes to the front of the bags, and inside was a Matchbox car, M&Ms, and Cars stickers.I am really happy with out everything turned out.  Many thanks to all our friends and family who made it out!Always & Forever,  ME[...]



Hunter: 24 Months

2013-10-22T08:54:20.773-04:00

I know, I know, I haven't been great at blogging the monster's monthly photos (or even taking them for that matter), but you guys... my baby boy is two.  He's not my baby boy anymore.. he's-- a little boy. I had this big realization last week:  I am finally enjoying being a mom.  Now don't think that I didn't love Hunter with ever fiber of my being, but I for the past 23.5 months, I have been in survival mode.  Every single day felt like I was just trying to make it through the day, and if I could without either Hunter or I melting down, it was a victory.  I think I am a relatively "good" mom, but I wasn't enjoying it.  At all.  However, the past couple of weeks I've realized that I really like it.  I like spending time with Hunter.  I like talking with him.  I like laughing with him.  I like thinking of activities to do with him.  I *gasp* want to have another baby (no, this is not a pregnancy announcement).  Step aside Stella-- Lizzie got her groove back!  Hey girl!In the past month, we took an overnight trip to Margate, NJ with our dear friends Max and Whitney.  It was the best weekend!  Hunter was so well behaved, and we had so much fun playing in the sand and splashing in the waves with Daddy. So much fun that he PASSED.  OUT. on the walk back from the beach.We took a chance and went out to dinner (something we never, ever do with Hunter), and he was great.  When he had finished eating, I took him to the front of the restaurant because he was fascinated with the live musicians and their "tars" (guitars).  He even took a spin on the dance floor with his MommaOn Labor Day we spent some time at the Elmwood Park Zoo to feed the giraffes with my brother, his wife Bryn, their three kids Owen, Skylar and Hayes, and their friends.  Hunter got to spend some quality time with his Uncle TimSkylar, Aubry, Owen H. Owen M. HunterIn other news worthy events of the past month, the Bubs spiked a 104+ fever for the first time.  Although he wasn't showing any other sick symptoms, we took him to the ER as a precaution.  They stripped him down to his skivvies and kept an eye on him until the fever came down.  And watched monster truck videos on Daddy's phoneHunter continues to be obsessed with all things cars.  The only toys he will play with have four wheels.  He also really loves "playing cars" with Daddy-- aka JEGs plays Forza on XBOX and Hunter holds his own remote.  Although most of the time is spent as Hunter changing the type of car they are driving.We really try to spend time outside while the weather is still nice.  Our neighbors gave us their old bike seat for JEGs' bike.  Hunter loves to go around the block a couple times, and you can hear him giggling as we go over bumps.After many years of saying the only thing that would make me run was if someone was chasing me, I started the Couch to 5K program.  It's a great way for me to get some exercise and keep Hunter occupied at the same time.  We snagged a jogging stroller from a consignment sale, and we pound the pavement 3-4 days a week together.  In semi-related news, I hate this jogging stroller with every fiber of my being.  Can anyone recommend a good stroller for a newbie runner?  I'm not going for speed right now, still running in timed increments.  I am thinking I want a swivel wheel because this fixed wheel I have gives me the fits. Bubs-  I can't believe it little dude... you are two years old.  You have grown up so much in the past year!  You have moved from the Young Toddler Room to the Older Toddler room at day care.  We miss Miss Tara and Miss Jen a lot, but so far you reall[...]



Mudroom Makeover Update

2013-10-16T16:36:32.437-04:00

One of the most pinned images from my website is our mudroom makeover, when we spent under $100 to transform it.  It's been over a year, so I figured I would show you the few updates we've made.To begin with, I picked up this rack to hold the iron and the ironing board and hung the stroller from the bar. With the stroller and  board up off the floor, we now have a space to tuck our rug scrubber (aka, my first life of defense against Hunter and a sippy cup).I also ditched the sideways ballerinas and had some art commissioned from a "local" artist, if you will.  I pulled out a some frames and made this into a revolving gallery for Hunter's daycare artwork.  The larger frame on the left and the smaller frame in the middle are from IKEA's RIBBA collection, and the frame on the right was a yard sale find that I spray painted white.  The milk glass compote bowl was another yard sale find that is great for tossing laundry treasures like loose change or earrings (in my case).  Since this room leads to the back yard, I keep a bottle of sun block on the shelf to spray down the monster before he heads out.  Also, the cherry wood box on the far left are the remains of my beloved Murphy.The "vase" for the plant is an old beer bottle (Lindeman's Framboise.. mmm raspberry...), and the jug by the window (which I have convinced myself looks *just* like those old school oversized glass vases from Z Gallerie) is actually a jug of wine leftover from our housewarming party.  Sadly, I had nothing to do with the emptying of that wine.  It was days after we found out we were pregnant.I am still on the hunt for a nice yarn rug for the space, but I haven't found anything that's caught my eye.  I wouldn't mind replacing the garage-like light fixture as well, but our end game plan for this space is a powder room, so I'll just deal with it for now.  This room may be tiny, but I love  how far it's come since this...                              Always & Forever,  ME[...]



One Room, Many Functions

2013-09-09T13:13:11.244-04:00

 We have a new addition to our sofa family!  Introducing the HOVAS' little brother, the HAGALUND:Side note:  every time I say HAGALUND in my head, I am actually thinking Hugga Bunch.  Do you guys remember those creepy dolls and their movie from the 80s?  I totally had the purple one, Giggler or whatever. Now that I've potentially given you nightmares for weeks, let's talk about how this little guy came into our family.  The second bedroom wears many hats:  it's a man cave.  it's Hunter's play room.  it's a guest room when my mother or cousin comes to stay with us.  it houses all my crafting crap.   The long and short of it:  we want to spend some time in there.  However, we fall into this situation when we are up there:Instagram: LizzieInProgressSittin' on the hardwood floor.  Not so comfy.We went back and forth about what do get in there -sofa, daybed, sofabed, DIY a bench- and we finally decided a sofa bed was the best bet for our situation.  Specifically, we wanted something from IKEA because in order for us to get it up our narrow, 90-year-old staircase, it needed to come apart.I've been scouring Craigslist for a couple months, and mostly only coming up with futons (which we did not want).  Originally, we had our heart set on the KIVIK, but 1. they were hard to come by as a sofa bed and 2. when they did, they were a little out of our price range.   One day I stumbled upon a listing for the HAGALUND outside of Center City for $275. JEGs was a little hesitant about it's small size, but I pointed out we didn't need another 93 inch couch-- we weren't going to be sprawled out upstairs.  We needed something was comfortable enough for him to strum a guitar or me to perch and sip my coffee while Hunter played.  I offered the chick $200 for it and she agreed (over 60% off from the store!!) and we made our way down on a Saturday afternoon. So far we really like it-  it's 59 inch width is the perfect size for our little nook area.  Two of us can comfortably fit on the couch but all three of us is a bit of a squeeze.  The cushions are firmer than the HOVAS, but they aren't uncomfortable.  We aren't crazy about having another white couch, so we are eyeing up the beige cover instead.  At only $60, it's not a huge expenditure and I think will save me from having to wash it every other day. The bed extends out to the length of a twin bed, and not quite the width of a double bed.  The seat cushion unzips to become the mattress of the bed.  I'll be honest-- it's not the most comfortable thing in the world, but for a weekend stay, it will do.It also sits pretty low to the floor.  I might try to beef it up for height and comfort with a couple thick foam egg crates.  The HAGALUND has storage for linens, but all I could fit was the blanket and pillows.  All other items (mattress pad, extra sheets, as well as deflated air mattress) are kept in a wicker laundry basket I purchase months ago from Home Goods.  I love this basket because not only is it great for storage, it doubles as a night stand.Confession:  the swing arm lamp is a hand-me-down from my parents, and we've had it for as long as I can remember.  I was so glad I caught my mom before she threw it out, because it's always been a favorite of mine.  The shade that is one there now doesn't fit (it's from the lamp in the nursery) so I will have to replace it.  I am, however, keeping the original brass finish. I totally dig it, and I love that brass lamps are so in right now.  As far as toy storage in the room, we have a small Little Tykes books shelf that keeps all[...]



Color My World: What a (S)teal!

2013-09-05T15:12:05.726-04:00

Target aficionados (like myself) know that they sell little bottles of nail polish for $.97 in their beauty department.  I've past them a couple of times, but as a die hard fan of Sally Hansen and O.P.I, I've scoffed at their cheap price tag.  I may be cheap, but I do have standards.

The other day, I was meandering through during my lunch break, and I saw the Tudor City Teal.  As someone who sticks to classics like pink, red and nude, this was far outside my comfort zone.  I figured that for under a dollar, I was willing to take the risk.


I am still on the fence about the color.  Like I said, this is not something I would normally rock, but let me show you my other purchases that day:


...my new planner and a sweet little bow key chain snagged from the Dollar Spot in the same hue.  Oddly enough, I didn't realize they were the same colors until I got home.

And further more, it's an almost identical match to my cellphone case (please look past the dirt of daily use):


So while I thought this was a new and daring color for me, I'm realizing it's a color I surround myself on the daily.  Which leads me to think, why not on my nails?

Watch out world, I've got teal on my nails.  Ain't nothin gonna stop me now.

Always & Forever,
  ME



First Annual Falconhead Independence Day BBQ

2013-08-29T10:17:00.141-04:00

An alternate title for this post could be "Lizzie Discovers Washi Tape and Proceeds to Put it On Everything". The weekend after the Fourth of July, I had our family and neighborhood friends over for a little Independence Day BBQ.  We noshed on my in-laws amazing BBQ chicken, corn on the cob, my mom's awesome German Potato salad, blue berry cobbler and other picnic-type foods.  In my mind, I would have beautiful red flowers overflowing my pots and in my planting beds.  However, we've had SO MUCH rain this season, I am having a hell of a time keeping anything from not drowning.  So to make up for my lack of flora, I stuck flags I snagged from Target's Dollar Spot in each pot.                         In the mudroom, I created a drink station.  I had bottles of water, Capri Sun and beer in the cooler, iced tea in a pitcher and I made Skinny Dragonberry Rum Twist in my drink dispenser.  I had been eyeing up Pottery Barn's Rhodes Dispenser Stand- and was totally willing to pay full price for it- until I realized it would be too small for my nearly-nine-inch container.  So you know how I roll-- I do it my damn self.   I snagged a pot and base from Lowe's, sprayed them a glossy red, and glued them together.  I was inspired by Kim's fence planters, and sprayed a couple leftover cans the same glossy red, trimmed it in washi tape I picked up at Lowe's for about $2.50 and added some patriotic flowers from Trader Joe's.The bulk of the party was meant to be held in the backyard, so I opened the fence gate and decorated them with a fabric banner I made from scraps I had leftover from a Halloween costume gone wrong.  I probably should have ironed it before I hung it.  Whoops.  On the day of the party, it was projected to be 97* , so I left sunscreen both inside and out in the back yard as well as bug spray (just in case).  I had snagged a little tray at a yard sale for $.50, sprayed it the same glossy red and trimmed it in the same washi tape.I was going to have about 10 kids at the party, so I wanted to make sure there were plenty of activities to keep them occupied.  We set up an  inflatable pool, along with a water table to help keep them cool.  I set a basket of goodies outside for them including sidewalk chalk, pool toys, water guns and DIY ribbon wands I made out of ribbon, dowel rods and, you guessed it, washi tape.   You guys, I love me some washi tape.  Expect it on everything now. Another thing that kept the kids attention was the Play and Freeze Ice Cream Maker.  My sister-in-law, Angie, brought it with her to pair with the blueberry cobbler, and the kids sat outside rolling it back and forth to each other.Abby gives it a rollOwen intercepts and sends it to Bridget across from himOf course, I think it only kept their attention for about half the time needed.  I am pretty sure my mom and Angie finished making the ice cream.I love hosting family gatherings.  My family lives about 45 minutes away from me, and while that isn't a ridiculous amount of time, I don't get to see them as much as I'd like to.  I especially don't get to see enough of these sweet faces:my nephew Hayes.His sassy sister, Skylarmy niece and goddaughter, Abigail.Our friend's daughter, McKaylaour handsome neighbor, TownesThis is one of my favorite group of pictures from the day; my 21-month-old son pushing his nearly 8-year-old cousin on his Mater toy.  This kid is a beast.  It was such a great afternoon, and I got the best compliment from my niece Abigail-- she said[...]



Wedding Crashing: Rustic Farm

2013-08-26T11:48:52.569-04:00

Calling all brides-to-be:  get your pinning trigger finger ready, because THIS is how you a rustic farm wedding with class.You guys remember our friends Max and Whitney?  Well on May 18, 2013 we were honored to be invited to their wedding at the groom's parents house in Unionville, PA.The ceremony was held on the front lawn with the house and beautiful courtyard as a back drop.  On the day Max proposed, the smell of lilacs filled the air of their front porch, and they paid tribute to this fragrant memory by having lilacs everywhere- including the mason jars with tea candles that lined the aisle.Max and Whitney chose a self-uniting ceremony and had their good friend Sara act as an officiant.  The ceremony was so beautiful and intimate, I felt honored to be present for this moment.photo via Jenna Walcott Photographyphoto via Jenna Walcott PhotographyWhitney looked... stunning.  There is no other word to describe it.  Her dress had everything: the mermaid style bodice was covered in lace and rhinestones, with feathers peaking up from her modified sweetheart neckline.  The skirt has big ruffles of silk organza.  She kept her jewelry simple, but added the perfect amount of drama with a gorgeous diamond cuff and a cathedral length veil. photo via Jenna Walcott PhotographyHer bouquet was the most beautiful bouquet I have ever seen and contained peonies, succulents and , of course, lilacs.Her bridesmaids were given carte blanche in picking a dress; the only rules were short and neutral.  Without consulting the bride or each other, these five ladies picked dresses that played off each other perfectly.photo via Jenna Walcott PhotographyWe need to talk about the favors.  If you are looking for those nasty Jordan almonds, look elsewhere.  Each guest got their own mason jar mug to carry around with them for the rest of the night.  They had chalk board paint on each one, so you could scribe your name to your glass.You guys, mason jar mugs.  So yeah, this happened.#mydreamcometrue.Instead of the traditional guestbook, they set up a photo station for guest to have their picture taken, and then write  a little note in a photo album.  It was a great way to remember each guest on the dayI loved this heart shaped cut of wood.  This is a beautiful memento of the day to be displayed on a mantle or bookshelf for years.One of the personal touches was the actual beverages provided for the evening.  Max is a brewer for a local brewery, so clearly a beer aficionado.  Max was given the opportunity a while back to go to Belgium and learn brewing techniques from Jean van Roy at Cantillon Brewery.  In honor of their special day, Jean sent a few kegs of their limited gueuze as the toasting beverage.  The owner of Farrente's Meats is a close personal friend of the groom's father and did the catering for the wedding.  They provided the most amazing appetizer I've ever had:  tomato soup with grilled cheese croutons.  The reception was held under a tent directly next to the ceremony area.  Throwing tradition to the wind, they chose a family style seating plan-- which lead to us getting to meet new people!photo via Jenna Walcott PhotographyThe table linens were a simple and crisp white cloth with a burlap table runner. Mason jars and vases were filled with lilacs and roses of all colors and rose petals were scattered about.We were serenaded by The Blue Method, a local soul funk band that is a favorite of Whitney's.  After the first dance, the party got startedWhen Whitney is around, there is always da[...]



Take Two

2013-08-16T12:25:21.552-04:00

Back in June I shared a mood board for our master bedroom.  I had two phases, the first being a general freshening up with paint and curtains.  Every time I sat down to blog about it, I stopped myself, and I couldn't figure out what was holding me back.  Until a couple weeks ago I realized what it was.I hated the color.  Hated it.  I had chosen Benjamin Moore's Conventry Gray with the idea of going with a gray, blue and coral color scheme.  After the color was on the wall, it just felt too cold and sterile to me.  I decided to start looking into the "greige" colors-- beige grays.   These are the colors I started flirting with(This picture is really not a good representation of the colors.  If you are interested in their true tones, I would highly reccommend getting your own samples)At first I was torn between the Revere Pewter and the Edgecomb Gray, however I felt like the former was too dark and the latter too light.  While I was flipping through the new Pottery Barn catalogue, I noticed wall color they used, SW Pediment, seemed like a nice mix of the two, while still being gray. I've taken the day off from work and I'm repainting the bedroom again.  Here is hoping the second time is a charm.The good news is I am still loving our bedspread that I scored for $60 at Marshalls.  It's a beautiful navy blue with a large floral print.My favorite part is it is reversible. If I am feeling sassy, I can flip it over for a geometrical design. It reminds me of this picture I snagged from Centsational Girl as an inspiration for the bedroom. So I am just going to file this whole process under "life lessons".  Sometimes you don't pick the right paint color the first time.How about you?  Have you ever picked a color that made you cringe after wards?Always & Forever,  ME[...]



Sandy, You Inconsiderate Bitch.

2013-07-30T11:35:34.178-04:00

Way back in 2009, I house crashed the sweet little shore house my parents rented from my Great Aunt Ola.  It is a duplex, with my parents on the lower floor and my great aunt, her daughter, and her daughter's kids and grandkids coming and going through out the summer.  It wasn't much, just a two bedroom apartment that my parents spent their retirement enjoying during the summer.And then Superstorm Sandy hit the New Jersey coast.  Working in the broadcasting business, I saw homes completely washed away from their foundations.  I feared for the fate of our cozy shore cottage when I heard that Long Beach Island was one of the hardest hit areas.  When my Aunt Becky was finally allowed on the island to assess the damage, they discovered the whole first floor had flooded and the water line was about three feet high.  Although I know we are very lucky to have sustained minimal damage, I was still upset the entire first floor had to be gutted- the only things that were saved was the refrigerator, stove, and living room furniture.  All the other furniture, cabinets, walls, flooring, appliances, linens and special keepsakes had to be thrown out. The once cozy living room went from this to this:Both bedrooms were gutted...as well as the kitchen and bathroom.standing in the kitchen and looking into the living room/ front of the house.As I mentioned before, the entire kitchen and the original cabinets had to be ripped outbefore circa 2009after June 2013For a couple of months we weren't sure if we would be able to use the house at all this summer, but then my cousin teased us with pictures on Facebook of drywalland floors....and the greatest tease of all, a brand new kitchenERMERGERD, I love this kitchen layout.  Look at all that storage!Now that most of the work is done, my mom can start scouring yard sales and Craigslist for furniture to replace all that was lost.  Or as I like to call it "the fun part!" Fingers crossed I'll be able to house crash before the summer is over!Always & Forever,  ME[...]



Rookies

2013-07-16T11:04:57.759-04:00

Hey guys!  It's been quiet around the halls of Lizzie In Progress because, honestly, I've just been kickin' back and enjoying the summer.  We went to a beautiful wedding in May (hopefully I'll get it on the blog soon) and we've got another one coming up this weekend!  Also you guys, tomorrow is our third anniversary!  Holy hell!  No big plans to celebrate-  no traditional gifts of leather, crystal or pearls here--just dinner at a local Italian place, and we are staying an extra night away for the wedding then we normally would.  But what I really wanted to tell you about is something that happened this past weekend.  On Sunday JEGs and I took the monster to Target to fill a couple prescriptions and to buy Hunter a potty.  In order to get him excited about the potty, we told him we were buying him a new toy.  So we head over to Target, and surprise surprise, the shittastic Target in the Metroplex doesn't have the toilet we were looking for.  Honestly, I shouldn't be surprised.  This Target has burned me before.  Anyway,  now we have promised Hunter a toy, and if nothing else, this kid remembers stuff like this.  So we meander over to the toy aisle and find a little $6 helicopter for him. As we are leaving the aisle he starts yelling "BYE BYE TRUCK!  BYE BYE TRUCK!" and by the time we are in the clothing department, he is in hysterics.  JEGs shows him the helicopter we picked out and he says he doesn't want it.  He wants truck.  So JEGs goes back to the aisle and swaps it out for the little police car that came in the set.  He doesn't want that.  So we take him back into the aisle and ask him to point out what he wants.  This is what we came home with:  A fifteen dollar fire rescue truck with lights and sirens.  Very LOUD lights and sirens.   allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/aPmrOEMDmDY" width="560">...and we still didn't get a potty.As we were driving home, JEGs looked and me and said, "You realize we made a rookie parenting move by letting him cry his way into getting a bigger toy, right?"I make no bones that I am a sucker for that little boy.But to be fair, we don't buy him toys that often.  The last toy we bought him was to replace a broken toy he got at Christmas-- which is probably when he got most of the stuff he has now.  So if a gargantuan truck keeps my little dude happy (and keeps me from having to watch Cars 2 1500 times today), then I will just take it.  And stock up on some Advil...but not from Target.  They'll probably be out.Always & Forever,   ME[...]



Hunter 21 months

2013-07-31T13:35:17.707-04:00

Lawdy folks.. I think we are hitting the dreaded Terrible Twos already.  This child know what he wants to do and he is going to do it by himself, whether I want him to or not.  When I was a toddler, my mom says she knew I had an independent streak early because I would insist that I didn't need help.  I would say in a very stern voice " I DO IT MYSELF".  Hunter definitely has my strong will and hot Irish temper.I am pretty sure my mom is chuckling to herself. He got to log some quality time with his godmother, Aunt Tara, at the beginning of the month. Don't let the side-eye fool you.  He adores her.His eczema has gotten much worse;  it covers his hands, feet, arms, legs and occasionally patches crop up on his face and torso.  We have an appointment with the dermotologist this up coming week and I swear it can't come soon enough.  Trying to do the simplest things like wash his hands or even just hold his hands makes him cry in pain.  It breaks my heart.All of his teachers at daycare mention how great he is with words.  I mean, he's not Henry Higgins' star pupil, but you get the idea of what he is trying to say.  He is also starting to be able to put together small sentences:  yeah I did.  where mommy go.  mailmans truck. He loves to grab a cell phone or anything that looks like a cellphone- like a remote- and have "conversations".  When you ask him with whom is he talking, the answer is usually Mem (my mom) or Pop Pop (JEGs' dad). Let's be honest.. this kid is a gangsta and just a general bad ass..yeah I'm drinking my cuppy.  What of it?..he didn't choose the bub life, the bub life chose him.  Bubs,  I know I say this every month, but every day you continue to bring us so much love and joy.  I miss you when I am at work, and I can't wait to see your adorable grin again.  Your hugs are probably the most medicinal things on this planet.  I love you so much.Love,  Mommy[...]



DIY "Ceramic" Vases

2013-06-26T07:00:03.824-04:00

 I have been mildly obsessed with these West Elm ceramic vases for a whileThey ranged in price from $19 for the 6" squat vase to $59 for 18" tall vase. While I don't think those prices are ungodly, I knew I could recreate them much cheaper.I've had these three woven vases for about four years now.  They've been moved to every surface of this house, but most recently they have taken up home in our guest room closet. They look short and stubby on our mantle, and their natural color looks washed out with the yellow walls in our kitchen.  I decided they were begging for a make over.The price tags on the bottom said they were $12.99 for the large one and $7.99 for the smaller two.  But I know me, and there is no way I paid that much for them.  I'm going to assume they were at least 50% off making them at least $14.50 for the trio.I snagged some spray paint I had from the basement from other projects and gave them each two coats of primer and two coats of color  L to R: Valspars Dove Gray, Valspar Primer,  Krylon Gloss White and Krylon Gloss Smoke GrayI let them dry and now they really pop on our kitchen buffet!They aren't an identical match, but not bad considering I used what I had lying around the house.  The best part is my version is not ceramic-- so I don't have to worry about little toddler hands reaching for them and knocking them over.One day I'll be able to have nice things again.  When Hunter moves out.  ;)Always & Forever,  ME[...]



Birthday Traditions

2013-06-12T07:00:08.351-04:00

Tomorrow is my birthday (yaaaaay!  happy birthday to meee!) and I am continuing this odd tradition I started a couple years ago of taking the day off and painting a room.  This year I've got my eye on our boudoir.  We had been putting off doing any work in our bedroom because we have some major construction to do first.  However, a month or two ago I proposed the idea of just freshening up the trim and window sills with a fresh coat of paint, and JEGs surprised me by saying we could paint the room.Picture me doing the happy dance/ butt jiggle.Our room right now is a strange muted lilac color.  It may look gray in the picture, but in person it shows much more purple.  It's not a pretty lilac or even an interesting gray.  It's just... blah.As much as I would love to completely overhaul the whole room, we have a couple of out of town weddings this summer, as well as some debt we are trying to pay down, so this make over is going to be done in two phases.  And because I like you guys, I'll give you sneaky peeky. Phase 1:1. I'm painting the walls a definite gray color (Benjamin Moore's Coventry Gray matched to Valspar's Ultra VOC paint) and a fabric palate of navy and coral.  2.  I stumbled upon this bedding set at Marshall's a couple weeks ago, and it was exactly what I wanted:  masculine colors in a feminine design.  The fact it was $60 (marked down from $180) was a total bonus!3. I really wanted to make my own curtains and bring in more of the coral color.  However, the down side to having big, gorgeous windows is that they let in a lot of sun light.  As soon as the sun comes up.  Which is like 5:30 am in the summer.  JEGs and I get one day a week each to sleep in, so we decided these blackout curtains would be much more practical.  I snagged the navy and in person they are soft and have a slight circular pattern to help tie into the bedding.  Phase 2:4.  Our bed is a double.  JEGs is 6'4 and we have a cat who doesn't like to share with us.  I'm sure you can do the math: we need a new bed.  Eventually we want to upgrade to a queen size, however a queen size bed and two bedside table is going to be a tight squeeze on that wall.  This BRIMNES headboard has a shelf along the back as well as shelves along the side to replace our tables.  5. I adore these prints from etsy seller MadeForYouPrints.  I would maybe have them flanking the smaller window, and save the area above the bed for some personal DIY.  6.  My love knows no bounds for this Pottery Barn rug.    However, with the $699 price tag for an 8x10, I might be looking for a knock off, or searching the ol' Craigslist.  7. With our side tables gone, I am dreaming of these sconces to hang beside our beds. The major construction I alluded to is our closet.  If you remember, two years ago we transformed the nook area into a closet, since the original closet is basically useless.  However, our plan is to bust out the original closet and make the whole wall look like this:...I think instead of the doors in the middle, we are going to have another drawer and a self on top.  This will eliminate our need for the dresser next to the radiator.  Which I would like to evenually box in.Ok, ok ok,  I am getting ahead of myself.  This stuff is waaaaaaay down the road.  Let's just concentrate on me slapping [...]



A Hosta Standoff

2013-06-10T13:39:37.512-04:00

Back in November, I told you that every time I looked at the landscaping in our front yard, I would have silent fits of frustration:To help keep me sane, JEGs cut down the horrendous bushes next to the porch and yanked out the skimpy azaleas. We were left with the dogwood tree and two shrubs on either side. I dreamed of having  beautiful hydrangea bushes to really get the cottage feel, and bonus fresh flowers for the house.  However, those shrubs were standing in the way of all my hopes and dreams.  The shrubs were OK, but I just didn't love them. We couldn't justify tossing them because the were in good shape, so we listed them on Craigslist-  dig 'em out and they are yours for free.  On a Saturday morning around 11, some dude came to get them.  Twenty minutes later, he was gone and I was filling in the holes with leftover dirt. Last weekend, JEGs and I decided to pick the hottest day of the year to do some yard work while the bubs was down for his nap. Ok, so maybe I am exaggerating on the "hottest day of the year" but it was pretty miserable-  the Philly area was just coming down from it's first heat wave of the year.  In MAY.  Seriously you guys, I have not sweat this bad since I birthed a baby.  Lawdy. Anyway, we grabbed two hydrangea plants for $6.98 each at Lowe's and I got to digging.  We picked plants that needed partial sun because our front yard gets the afternoon sun, but we have a huge tree by the tree that shades the house and yard. They aren't very big right now, but they should grow to be about 5 ft x 5 ft.My plan is next spring/summer we will finally transplant that stupid tree to the back yard and add a third hydrangea in the middle to fill in the planting bed nicely.Since I was already a sweaty/muddy mess, I decided to turn my attention to the area between our porch and our neighbor's porch where the huge bushes used to be.  We had discussed with our neighbors, Amy and Brian, about creating a planting bed between the two houses.  My very generous mother-in-law had given us some hostas from her own garden, so Amy and I dug up the area and planted them to allow them room to grow.  For the time being, we interspersed Impatiences to make it look fuller.Amy had two hanging baskets just chilling on her porch, so we grabbed two of the shepherd's hooks leftover from our wedding and hung the baskets for added height and colorThat decorative piece in the middle will be getting a coat of spray paint later this week.The view between the houses has changed dramatically in the past year!                                         circa June 2012June 2013              We still have some edging to put around the planting beds, but so far I love how it looks-  so much more open and cleaner looking!The toddler in the door saying "MAAAAAAAAmiiiieeeee.  MAAAAAAAAmiiiiieeeee" gives it a cozy feel too.  After all that hard work, and the Monster woke up, we cooled off in a sprinkler we had snagged from Target earlier in the dayInstagram: LizzieInProgressBest $9 ever spent. Anyway, I think I'll probably plug in a couple more annuals in the front bed just to fill it in a little more.  Maybe it will distract people from that stupid tree.  God I hate that tree.Have[...]



Shop My Closet!

2013-06-07T07:00:02.314-04:00

Alright folks, I am doing a round two of SMC:  Summer/Spring Edition.  I've got some new stuff and *gasp* jewelry this time!If you see something you like, you can pay for it via Pay Pal by e-mailing me at HonestlyOK613@gmail.com with the exact item you want.  Please include the number listed below the picture.  Prices include shipping.  Sales are final.  U.S.A only.  If you want more pictures of an item, I can do that, but I can't promise it will be in a timely manner.  I will not hold items; first come first serve.Happy Shopping!1Wore this shirt once, washed it and decided I needed the next size down. 2Worn once during a night out with the girls. 3God's honest truth, I don't even think I wore this once.  I should know better not to purchase button downs.456These shorts are not actually radio active looking. Or dirty.  Something got messed up in the editing process.789Don't be scared by the XS size of this skirt-- the entire back waist band is elastic.  This actually ended up being too big for me.101112Wore this for New Year's Eve.  The top is a fitted rayon shell and a looser chiffon overlay with sequins down the side.  Fits like this when worn.13Wore these once to a wedding while I was pregnant.  Super cute, but now that I don't have puffy pregnant feet, they don't fit.  1415161718All proceeds benefit the Get Clothes that Fit Me charity.  It's a local gig dedicated to helping the economy and making me look good.  So really, purchasing this stuff is making a charitable donation.  Don't you feel like a good person now?Always & Forever,  ME[...]