September 22, 2011

A Letter to My Broken Oven & Favorite Fall Recipes

Dear Oven,

I miss you.  While not baking for two months has proven to be beneficial to my waistline, I miss you immensely.  Please let the new part sitting on the countertop fix you, so I can make these:

Mini Apple-Cheddar Turkey Meatloaves from Southern Living - With a muffin pan, you get automatic portion-control!

Monkey Bread from Cooking Light - Can you think of a better way to kick off game day?? You know I love Big Ten football!

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting via Real Simple - Yep, they're easy, and cute and totally yummy.  (Oh, and people will think they're way more complicated than they are!)



p.s. While I wait for the repairman to come back to fix you, I guess I'll have to find those slow-cooker recipes... or try these favorites from the Queen of Southern Cooking, the Great Paula Deen:

September 13, 2011

Did I Start a Trend?

So, little known fact.  I hate checking my mail.... the physical, paper mail.  Rarely is there anything good in there - bills, more bills, catalogs, junk mail for insurance companies, did I mention bills?  If someone dropped it on my kitchen counter, I'd look at it every day, but opening up the box and carrying it inside is just a hassle to be reminded I owe someone money.  I actually enjoy checking my mail for about six weeks between December 1 and early January - holiday and birthday cards!!  Anyways, I digress.

Last night I got my mail on the way home and... yippee!  There was something fun.  The new fall West Elm catalog!  I took a peek and low and behold - who else thinks a navy wall is hot in the bedroom??  They totally stole my idea. (wink wink)

Pardon the bad pic, but you get the idea:

West Elm Catalog - Navy Wall  

This is a great excuse to show off the wall styled with my collection of white frames:

Master Navy Wall with Frames

September 12, 2011

Cheap & Non-Committal: A Perfect Kitchen Chalkboard

Chalkboard Paint

Just a small container of chalkboard paint, an inexpensive canvas from the craft store and a few coats of paint on a Sunday afternoon, and.... (drum roll, please!) 

Chalkboard Paint - Finished

A kitchen chalkboard!  

First of all, it's functional.  The raised canvas makes it easy to cover the ugly extra cable/phone outlet and the FIFTH kitchen electrical outlet!  (Note: did the developer think I was going to have a Crock Pot convention in there???)  Best of all, it's fun.  I've got a cool space to leave messages for guests, cheer myself up with goofy quotes, and switch things up from time to time.  I can only imagine what my guests will write when left alone with a little bubbly and chalk!  Maybe it's almost time for a party to find out! 

I had considered painting the actual wall or buying a chalkboard vinyl thingy to adhere to the wall, but this was by far the easiest option - and totally non-committal.  Perfect, right?  (No comments from the funny farm, please.) 

If you needed a reminder, this little kitchen nook looked like this before.  

September 10, 2011

Sneak Peak!!

The second phase of my condo painting is complete!!!  You might remember this winter I painted the guest room white.  This time, I hired a little help to do the master and main living space.  I'll do the bathroom myself this fall.

I don't have much back on the walls and haven't had a chance to do much decorating, so these are just a little teaser.  More soon! 

Painting Phase 2

Painting Phase 2

September 8, 2011

In the Navy

You may have noticed in the previous post a navy wall.  Yep, one of my walls is being enlisted in the navy when the others go crisp white... momentarily!  Which one?  That's a surprise, but I will show you the fabrics I purchased on to freshen up coordinating throw pillows!

Pillow Fabrics
1.  Japanese Floral Print,
2.  Premier Prints, 
3.  Japanese Diagonal Stripe, 

Well, what do you think?  I always get nervous purchasing fabrics I haven't seen in person online.  The colors are never perfect, but I'm hoping they all work together and play off my soon-to-be navy wall!  

September 7, 2011

Pinpointing Projects

Like everyone who loves design of all kinds, I've fallen in LOVE with Pinterest. Even if the idea comes from another source, there are always a host of images on Pinterest to inspire by typing in a few search terms.  As a value add for bloggers, the site makes it super easy to properly attribute images to their rightful owner.... fantastic news for someone who doesn't have time to take her own photographs, yet still wants to blog. (No clue who that may be....)  When I do find a few extra hours in the day, here's a sneak peek and a few hints of upcoming projects.

... chalkboard paint!

Source: via Emily on Pinterest

Source: via Emily on Pinterest

... an accent wall!

... fun with color, white-on-white and words!

September 6, 2011

Wishing on a Budget

Once my place is painted, there are just a few more finishing touches to the furnishings I'd like to make before the year ends. I'll be scouting for deals, sales and may seek out a few paying photo gigs for extra cash to make these purchases sooner rather than later.  (And, if all else fails, Santa, are you reading this?)

It's actually a short list and all items I've been dreaming of for quite some time.  First of all, I've had a crush on these chairs for years, and am currently stalking them on Craigslist for a good deal.  I've noticed them super-reduced before, so I am confident I can find them at a steal.... eventually!  Several of the furniture stores in my neighborhood have fantastic acrylic ones, but they're WAY out of my budget.  

Next, I love my dining room table, but it just doesn't work in the space.  I've rearranged furniture for hours... and it's just wrong for the condo and too big for my day-to-day life.  Sad, but true.  This little puppy pairs nicely with my dream chairs and would open up the south end of the house, nod to the dark woods and modern look in the kitchen, and just tie the whole space together.  I've had my issues with West Elm quality before, but I think this is a "go."  

Finally, I tried to make my sisal rug work in the living room, but it's just the wrong shape.  I tried to sell it online, and that didn't work either.  Now it's in the bedroom - and it actually looks FANTASTIC!  But, when winter comes I'm going to need a rug in the living room as well to keep my feet warm.  I've loved this pattern from FLOR since they debuted it earlier this year, but I didn't start obsessing over it until I visited it in store.  In fact, if they stocked their store, I probably would have walked out carrying it.  (Yep, I'm a sucker.  It's why I window shop at aforementioned neighborhood furniture stores without a wallet.)  Paired with white walls and dark floors (like the picture), it will look great in the space.

Let's see how smart I can be with my money so these babies can find their way home to my house!  

September 5, 2011

Time for a White Out!


I picked a color!  I picked a color! I learned my lesson after grueling all weekend in the guest room earlier this spring just to learn I didn't like "Snow White."  This time, I bought a tester.  Guess what?  Everything I've read in magazines and across the blogosphere was right - Benjamin Moore White Dove IS the perfect white!  I'm so excited to finally have the house painted the way I want it.

Stay tuned for results... it's going to be a process!!

Pin It button on image hover