Sunday, July 29, 2012

Wonderful windows...

“I discovered windows one afternoon and after that, nothing was ever the same.” 
-Anne Spollen

Before we even moved into our new house, I had an idea for the big window in the living room. I was inspired by a couple of things I'd pinned...
1, 2, 3
So I mocked it up in Illustrator to see what it might look like in our new space. I was totally digging it. But, a little bit unsure how to begin.

So luckily when my mom came to visit in June, she was able to help me move from dream to reality. You can see more about that here and here.

But, then the project came to a standstill as I waited for the bamboo blinds to be delivered (the size I needed had to be ordered online) and then waited for my handyman to make time to tackle my project.


I was getting antsy to see the final result, so I sneakily moved the supplies onto the floor in the middle of the living room. After stepping over the curtain rods and blinds for about two weeks, Rob finally got the hint yesterday afternoon.

After a little bit of cursing, sweat, and extra wood screws, we folded up the ladder and stepped back to admire our handiwork. Even though Rob was hesitant when we started, by the end, he agreed that they looked pretty good.

I'm thrilled to see how closely it matches my original vision. I love it!! I can confirm... hanging the curtains up high does indeed make the space look taller! I smile every time I walk by.

The other side of the room... just to complete the picture
I've still got a couple of small projects to finish up... a garland to hang on the map, better storage for our dvd collection, a small gallery wall in the corner by the fireplace, and maybe someday a new rug.

I'll be sure to keep you posted. And, maybe by then, I'll have learned how to take a good interior photo.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

"Peak bagging"

“Let go, for I am ready to see life at its fullest and live to the best of myself, and for that reason I am now spontaneous, happy and feel whole.” 
-Nicole Gilbert 

We were looking forward to hiking the Mt. Mitchell trail on Friday morning, but as we drove up to the trailhead, the rain and fog forced us to make up a Plan B on the spot.

We still "bagged" the highest peak east of the Mississippi, but we reached the summit by car rather than by foot.

Instead, we practiced being spontaneous (ignoring fog warnings on the Blue Ridge Parkway, shopping at REI in Asheville, eating at a new-to-us burrito joint, and watching a matinee showing of The Amazing Spiderman) and ended up with a day full of laughter, love, and memories. Rob summed up our day, describing it as "better than a birthday."

Have you had any recent plans that you had to abandon? Did it turn out for the better?

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Pippi love...

“No Fridolf, bother all this learning. I can't study anymore because I must climb the mast to see what kind of weather we're going to have tomorrow.”  
-Astrid Lindgren

Can I show you my new favorite book? I picked it up this afternoon after browsing the bookshelves of a local discount store. I just couldn't leave the store without it.

It's been a long time since I've read Astrid Lindgren's Pippi Longstocking. But, as a young girl, I devoured the books about Pippi. I admired her spunkiness and her adventures... in fact, I still do.

When I saw this edition, illustrated with charming mixed media collages by Lauren Child, I immediately longed to curl up with a small child and read aloud this classic story together. I'll save it back for when the day comes that I have my own littles to read to. But, I can't promise that I won't read it myself before then.

Take a look at Lauren Child's website: Milk Monitor. It's just as adorable with clever animations and a hint of that same whimsy that makes Pippi so lovable.

I might be a little late to the Lauren Child party, as it seems she has a show on the Disney Channel based on her popular book characters, Charlie and Lola. (Their website is adorable, too!) But, I'm a fan. I can't wait to add more of her books to my library.

I really wish I could get my hands on this limited edition of The Secret Garden. Although the Puffin website says it's sold out, it might not be everywhere... but, it looks expensive.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Let's Eat, Y'all!

“Pull up a chair. Take a taste. Come join us. Life is so endlessly delicious."
-Ruth Riehl

When my mom was here a couple of weeks ago, we were able to realize several projects that I had been dreaming of but hadn't yet found the inspiration for.

I have a tall blank wall in my kitchen across from the island. It was begging for something big and graphic. I was inspired by this, this, this, and this, as well as the giant utensil art I had in our last house (still available at Hobby Lobby, I think).

We picked up some white beadboard from Home Depot and set out to distress it a little before hand-painting the letters. You can see more specific steps and photos from the process over on my mom's blog.

I think I might be in love.

However, seeing it in photos makes me want to paint the wall behind it a fun accent color. I'm not sure I'm ready to commit to a full-fledged color scheme yet. Any thoughts?

Monday, July 09, 2012

Oven Sweet Potato Fries

“Cooking is at once child's play and adult joy. And cooking done with care is an act of love.”
-Craig Claiborne

My husband chooses restaurants based on the fact whether they serve sweet potato fries. He also makes food choices based on how cheap it is. (Going to the grocery store with him yesterday was quite painful!)

Needless to say, he was excited to see that the local McDonald's has 99-cent McNuggets on Mondays. I was not so excited to add another fast-food meal to our meal plan. So for the last couple of weeks, we have compromised...

On Monday evenings, he picks up nuggets on his way home, while I make sweet potato fries and steamed veggies as sides.

Want to know my super-easy (healthy-ish) version of oven-roasted sweet potato fries??

All it takes is sweet potatoes (two small ones is plenty for the two of us), olive oil, salt, and pepper. Read on!
Peel the potatoes and then slice them lengthwise. The original recipe I read mentioned that you should keep them dry to help the olive oil adhere and to avoid soggy fries. That's how I've always done it, so I also recommend it!
Lay the slices out on a cookie sheet, spacing them out as evenly as possible. Coat with olive oil, salt and pepper. Slices should be shimmery but not drowning.
Heat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for 30 minutes. Take them out after 15 minutes to flip them over and then put them back in. It wouldn't hurt to add a little bit more oil, if they're looking dry. Watch them carefully in the last 5 minutes--you don't want to burn them! We like ours dark but not burnt! As the original recipe says, "BURNT SUGAR = NASTY!"
If you're lucky enough, plate with McNuggets and a steamed veggie. Serve and enjoy!

You might also enjoy...

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...