Archive for October, 2010

major changes..already!?

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Posted by Rebecca, October 13th, 2010

As I’ve mentioned and previewed in my last post, this week we are having hardwood floors installed in our upstairs hallway and master bedroom. Wait what? Don’t we have brand new carpet? Yes we do, but like many things in this house it is your run of the mill, builder grade, vacuum-leaves-marks-on-it, carpet.  And I hate it.

Our reason for going with this carpet was to save money.  It was the standard carpet, meaning we didn’t pay anything out of pocket for it.  We had the vast color options of white, pink, blue and this.  I wasn’t a fan of the gold hue, but the upgrades were pricey.  Our bedroom is so large that even just a “level 1” upgrade (read: same carpet better colors) would have cost us $1,000. And that was just for one room.  We decided to upgrade only the 2 rooms downstairs that have carpet (the family room and office) to a berber style and live with these until we could afford otherwise.  Here’s Macky modeling a close up..

The carpet actually didn’t look as gold as I thought it would, and I was thinking I could live with it a little longer than anticipated.  But then this happened…

We had this problem in our condo and knew it was only a matter of time before it happened here.  Macky is a master carpet seam finder.  And he’s also a very high maintenance, needy cat.  Think puppy with separation anxiety and that’s Macky.  So I was painting Brielle’s letters in a spare bedroom one day and he got extremely upset that he couldn’t get to me.  I ignored the crying for no more than 2 minutes when I heard a tear.  Yes he found the seam.  It was all downhill from there.

We didn’t get too upset about it, because we had spare carpeting and knew it could be repaired.  But then something else began happening.  This is a very embarrassing topic that few pet owners discuss, but I’m going to go there. Darwin started peeing on our carpet.

I know, you’d give your cat away, yell at him, spray him with a water bottle, whatever.  But you see, Darwin has a neurological disorder called cerebellar hypoplasia.  We knew this when we adopted him, and it actually was the main reason why we did adopt him.  We lost Macky’s brother, Sunny, to feline panleukopenia when he had just turned two.  When we saw that cerebellar hypoplasia could be caused by a pregnant mother surviving feline panleukopenia, we knew that Darwin was a survivor and felt immediately connected to him.  Plus he happens to be orange, just like Sunny, and the sweetest little thing you’d ever meet.

I found this video of a cat with Darwin’s disorder.  As you can see, his disability doesn’t affect him too much and isn’t very noticeable most days…

So we didn’t know at the time, but Darwin’s disorder can cause litter box issues.  He has trouble keeping his balance and sometimes misses the box. So we can no longer use litter boxes with lids and we cover the surrounding area with puppy pads, incase he misses.  But I think that sometimes he confuses cheap, fluffy carpet with a puppy pad and goes there.  It is not at all a behavioral issue with him and he honestly thinks he’s going in a litter box.  Luckily, he kept to one end of our hallway.

We cleaned it almost daily with our Bissell Spot Bot and Hoover Carpet Steamer, so we never got that “cat lady” smell in our house.  But we never, ever, eveeeer want to get to that point.  We knew it would be nearly impossible to stop him, so we made the decision to tear up the carpet in the hallway.  We feared he would then start going in our bedroom, so as a preventative measure, we also tore up the bedroom carpet since the hallway leads directly there.

And while we decided to tear things up, we figured we’d get some new baseboards to match the higher ones the builder gave us downstairs.  And while we were at that! Our bedroom is massively huge, like in a bad way.

This is the view from where our bed sits (though taken before we moved in). That little area back there is our “sitting room”, but it makes for a quite uncozy bedroom.  We have just a bed, 2 night stands and a dresser, so this is my view every morning.

We wanted to eventually add a wall here to separate the rooms.  Keyword: eventually.  Many people immediately tell us that this room would make a great nursery, though I picture it being my art studio of sorts.  Either way, it would need a door to keep out the terrorizing cats, but we wanted to keep that open feeling.

So the solution? Build a wall with double french doors.

The doors are being installed as I type.  Once it’s all done and the dust has (been) cleared, I will get some after pics up.

But the moral of the story here? Our cats are very important members of our family, so we make sure this house works for all of us.  Luckily, this time, the level of style in the house improved thanks to the cats.  We knew that carpet doesn’t really work for us, but we gave it a second shot and hoped for the best to try to save money.  Though we sacrificed our planned vacation, major office remodel, food, clothing to eventually end up with hardwoods… our floors are going to look pretty awesome and I am very excited to see the outcome!  Plus Darwin just looked at me like he was sorry, and he melted my heart.  One more time for good luck!…

Until the after, kids!

a taste of new

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Posted by Rebecca, October 12th, 2010

Here’s a tiny glimpse into what we’ve been busy with. More to come once the project is finished! Please ignore the dirty (new!) floors…

the wedding

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Posted by Rebecca, October 11th, 2010

Yesterday was our first wedding anniversary.  We always have to be different, so instead of doing the 10/10/10 thing we went for 10/10/09.  Actually, I was aiming for 10/3/09 but we couldn’t get the date.  So the 10th it is!

In honor of our anniversary, I decided to post a few (okay, 25) wedding pictures that cover more of the design/style side of the wedding and less of the hey! look at us! side.  How does this relate to the house? Well as I’ve mentioned before, we did all of our flowers and most of the wedding design on the same day as we chose our interior options for the house.  And coincidentally, the foundation of our house was poured on 10/9/09… the day before the wedding.  Here’s a picture of the house on 10/4/09, the last chance we had to take a picture before the wedding….

So without further ado, our wedding, in mostly pictures so I don’t bore you 🙂

(Pictures courtesy of our phenomenal photographer, Zlatko Batistich)

We got married at a very small, little known bed and breakfast with an organic farm not far from where we live.  It’s nestled so far back in the woods that we had driven past numerous times and never knew it was there.  We attempted to time the date so that the leaves had began to change, but of course those things never work out and it was mostly green around the farm.

The wreath our florist made for the door

Our DIY menu cards…Mike used the font from our invites (which we had to purchase and also appears in the title for this site) we printed them on textured cardstock, glued them to green scrapbook paper, hole punched the corners and tied some twine in there.  We made quite the team.

Hey look, it’s me! Coming down the stairs of the old house, which dates back to 1750.

My bridesmaids and I, walking to meet Mike in one of the gardens with old water tower in the background.

There is an old cottage on the grounds and it was one of the reasons why we chose this place.  We had our cocktail hour in this area and since it got chilly at night, the owners lit the fireplace inside.  Definitely one of the highlights of the wedding.  We didn’t even think anyone would go in there, but it was jam packed.

Walking through one of the gardens.  My dress and shoes were filthy before the wedding even started. I’ve never claimed to be very glamorous.

My favorite series of pictures.  I wanted a location with a dirt driveway for this reason.

My bouquet. (Side note- this picture is completely candid, I had no clue it was taken.  How’s that for an awesome photographer?)

Bridal party… girls’ dresses were from David’s Bridal (unbelievable right?), guys got suits from Macy’s and wore striped ties to compliment Mike’s solid tie.  The florist didn’t listen to anything we said about the bridesmaids flowers.  I hate leaves in arrangments.  But when the day comes around, what can you do? I’m no bridezilla.

Always connected…

Mmm cake. The florist “forgot” our topper, so we had a naked cake.  But I kinda like it like that.  Maybe a new trend?

One of the table arrangements

Our DIY menus, with our DIY favors/placecards

The first tag on the favor box gives a name/table number.  The second tag said this…

And was filled with these…probably my favorite part of everything we did.

Farm signage

Every wedding needs a cute kid, I believe we hit the jackpot.  Complete with ring bearer pillow via Etsy.

Ceremony view

Every good party has guacamole!

It rained in the morning, which was very nerve racking, but it cleared up by the afternoon and left us with this beautiful sunset.

The reception was in a tent, which I know a lot of people consider to be a turn off, but it was something we were looking for.  A blank canvas 🙂

And I was dying to hang paper laterns, which don’t exactly go with a ballroom

We specifically asked our caterer for mini ice cream cones, being that we’re pretty well known for being ice cream lovers

Another thing that was huge to us was the music.  We did nothing traditional for the ceremony and didn’t want any group dances, slow dances, etc during the reception, which made for one hell of a party.

The old house at night

All and all, I’d say our wedding was pretty cool, though I suppose I’m a little biased 🙂

Happy Anniversary, Husband.

recycling pretty

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Posted by Rebecca, October 8th, 2010

Back when we had our condo, we kept both our garbage and recycling cans in those under cabinet pull out drawer things.  It was practical then, because we didn’t have any wall space to stick one garbage can, nevermind two, but I hated that they took up precious storage space.  So when we got this new place, I began eyeing this Simple Human semi-round stainless garbage can…

Mike originally didn’t want to leave a garbage out in the open, but I stressed the ease of people coming over and not having to give directions to the can.  And also being able to move it to places where we were chopping or making other messes.  It would also add some prettiness to the side of our island, which was a plain old side of a cabinet. I obviously won the battle, despite the expense of the can, but if you’re sticking it in the middle of your kitchen, it better be a nice one, right?

We figured since we no longer use water bottles, we wouldn’t have enough recyclables to justify a can.  We planned to just bring them out to the garage when we had to.

But since we use a can of cat food a day and get mass amounts of junk mail, it seemed that we couldn’t keep up with the trips to the garage.  We always had a pile of cardboard/paper and one for cans on our countertop.  I hate cluttered countertops.  Like, I couldn’t relax at night unless everything was cleared off.  So one day we were in Target and I spotted this small basket…

I wasn’t looking for a solution, but I just loved the dark color of the basket and the idea immediately popped in my head to use it as a place to store our recyclable paper before we bring it out to the garage.  I knew it was more realistic to accept the fact (especially with winter approaching) that we wouldn’t be making 3 trips out to the garage per day.  So we began using it and it worked like a charm, living on top of our fridge and getting emptied about every two weeks with the recycling pick up.

I also liked that it brought a little more of the dark brown warmness into the room, since there’s some dark brown in our backsplash tiles.

But we still had the can issue, which was fine until a few weeks ago when we went on a seltzer kick.  Suddenly we couldn’t keep up with those trips to the garage either.  Then once again, while randomly walking past the basket aisle in Target looking for picture frames, I noticed they had a round version of our small rectangular one.

I put it on the floor, in the corner between our cabinets and our sliding glass door.  It’s mostly out of sight, but I once again like the dark homeliness it brings in.

Garbage can, meet basket…

And basket, meet garbage can…

(Yes my curtains are wrinkled.  I will get on that.)

So far the process has worked wonderfully…it has been practical and efficient, yet pretty.  We have to decorate practically around here, since we have a 4 legged terror running around…

“Oooh nice basket!! MINE?!”

countertop eye candy…version 2!

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Posted by Rebecca, October 7th, 2010

I posted this picture a few weeks ago of some tomatoes we got from the farm we belong to. Well the farm just outdid itself by giving us a purple pepper!!!

Yes I know, one of those things is a pumpkin. But we also got that from the farm and I was going for the contrast 🙂

I took seriously well over a hundred pictures of these things. I don’t think I will ever eat them. But for now, they are sleeping tight in my favorite countertop bowl from Ikea…

Mother nature has outdone herself again. I am so in love with these pretty colored veggies that I may have to find a place in my house to hang one of my hundred pictures. Dining room?

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