Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Depression Forces Me to Shop

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

I've been so good lately, just buying things for the house. But now that the house is on hold, I feel like I can't plan anything until the new settlement date has been scheduled. So I treated myself to a present.

It's been so dreary and rainy lately. I thought that maybe I needed a pair of rain boots. These Kamik boots are so bright and fun, how could I resist?

UPDATE: I just got an email notification that they upgraded my free shipping (which was supposed to take 4-5 days), and I can expect my fun boots on my doorstep tomorrow! Perfect! Friday is "jeans day" at work, and it's looking like scattered thunderstorms!

Ode to Craigslist

Last week I read through a children's poem that I had written years ago, so I thought it'd be fun if I posted in that sort of kid's book format a few times a week. Kind of like a creative exercise. Well, I didn't want to write an angry hateful poem about my house (I'm trying to move on!), so I whipped one up about my other current annoyance...Craigslist. Not really Craigslist, but the people who frequent it.

Ode to Craigslist

Why, my dear Craigslist, do you bring me such woe
I am dissatisfied with the grief you bestow
It’s true, in the past, some good times were had
But lately you’ve made me nothing but sad

All I request is a sale of my chair
The condition is good and the pricing is fair
The wicker is dark, the cushion is fluffy
The legs aren’t even a little bit scuffy

I’ve received many emails from women and men
There was Michael, Colleen, Regina, and Jenn
They all scheduled times to come pick the chair up
But they never arrived, and I felt like a schlup

A new email arrived from an interested dame
I waited and waited, but she never came
These false, fickle folks frustrate me the most
But I don’t want the chair, so I go and repost

I hope that in time you will turn things around
And a match for my chair one day will be found
But until that day comes, my darling Craigslist
I will sit in this chair and be seriously pissed

Monday, April 28, 2008

I Really Can't Believe It

All I've been thinking about lately is our new home. We went out this weekend to buy paint and blinds and fun stuff like kitchen cabinet organizers and guest bath towels. I was counting down the seconds until Wednesday at 3pm, when we were scheduled for our final walk through, and closing at 4pm.

I just got a phone call from the builder. Less than two days before closing. We can't close.

I have so much anger and sadness built up inside my right now, I don't know whether to cry or scream, but I feel like doing both. Apparently the township won't issue a C/O due to the freaking slope of the freaking driveway. So they have to redo it. They are "assuming" that we'll be able to close in May.

I was so ready. I changed my address. I set up my utilities. I packed. My mom was coming on Friday to help me paint all weekend. I took days off of work. I started a huge pile of "Stuff to bring on Wednesday" in the middle of the living room.

I'm experiencing a level of frustration that I haven't felt in a very long time.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Is that spilled lemonade?

I got a lunch time phone call from Rob earlier this week informing me that one of his students peed all over his desk and chair.

Did I mention he teaches high school?

Gross. I know. Rob was out of the room for a few minutes and someone ran in, did their bidness, and left a little golden treat all over Rob's desk. Luckily it didn't hit any of his personal belongings, and he was able to swap out for another desk. I was surprised he wasn't more skeeved, considering he's a paranoid germaphobe. But he said he kind of expected something like that to happen at some point, and he even made a joke to a coworker a few weeks earlier about that exact thing.

I'm glad I work in a place where I would never EXPECT pee on my desk. In fact, if I walked in and there was a puddle of something, I'd probably stick my hand right in it to wipe it off.

I think the worst part for Rob is not knowing exactly who did it. He has it narrowed down to a few kids. We often joke about the contrast in our working environments. I work in a nice building in Center City Philadelphia. I have a beautiful office, great equipment. No one pees on my stuff. Rob works in a dilapidated building in Camden. His classroom doesn't even have real walls or a door that he can close, let alone enough desks or books for the kids.

Now I'm getting depressed.

The Walk Through

Yesterday was our pre-closing walk through. We were there nearly two hours, checking everything and measuring stuff. I can't believe how real this feels now.

When we got there, they were putting in the grass. It looks so much nicer with some greenery, and not just dirt, surrounding the place.
Our house...

Here's half the downstairs. I love the floors! They are so...NEW! Unfortunately the view won't be pleasant for some time, but who cares?!
Living/Dining Room

This is the kitchen. I want to get a little two person dinette set to put right by the window. The cabinets are so high that I can't even reach two of the four shelves inside. (Is the purple going to make it look too small and dark???)

The three bedrooms all look like this right now, so I won't bother showing you them all. I'm really happy with the carpets. And I can't wait to add some color to these white walls!
Master Bedroom

And well, I guess that's it for the tour. Decorating is the only thing on my brain right now.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

I snooze, I lose

I was thinking about that Pottery Barn subway sign since I first posted about it on Monday. Finally today I decided that I must have it, even though wall decoration is low on my house priority list. So I head over to, and lo and behold, they are sold out.

Dang it. Shoulda known.

I can't be too disappointed, however, because I am crazy-excited about our pre-closing walk through today at 3:30!!!!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Kitchen Art

After looking at hundreds of gorgeous prints, I was inspired to create something for my kitchen. Something to hang on my plum colored wall. C'mon, I'm a designer. If I didn't have something on the wall done by my own hand, that'd be disappointing.

Initially I thought, "maybe a silhouette of a fork". Then it evolved into a diagram of a whole place setting. But that looked much too busy.

So I cut it down to labeled utensils. Nice and graphic. Simple. I like it!

Kitchen Art

Click for a closer view.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Problem solved!

Earlier I was having some trouble deciding what to do with my living room. I couldn't find a good fabric for inspiration. I wasn't sure what color to paint the walls because of my neutral sofa and chair. It was almost like the sofa color was too dark for a dark wall color and too light for a light wall color.

But today, I have found the solution! Browsing around on Repro Depot, I found the perfect fabric.

I absolutely love it! It's going to be perfect on my dining room chairs! It was a little pricier than I was originally planning on spending, but a few yards should get me through. I'm going to paint the walls that blue, maybe with an accent wall in the dark brown, We'll see about that part. I'm so excited!

Lusting over...

...Pottery Barn. I've never actually been a huge Pottery Barn fan. Probably because most of their products are out of my price range. But I received an email from them today about their sale, and I fell in love with a few items.

Clockwise from top left: this Songbird fabric would look really nice on the seats of my dining chairs, and it's very similar to the color I want to paint the walls; I've admired this Subway Sign for a while, and now it's on sale; this Bedford Smart Wall Cabinet is so fun for a disorganized mess like myself

Friday, April 18, 2008

The Boudoir

I have been struggling over what to do with the bedroom. I think the main issue is that we have no bedroom furniture whatsoever. No dresser. No nightstands. Just mattresses and a frame. Our plan was to get new furniture once we moved. We were leaning toward the Loop collection at Crate and Barrel, mainly because of the affordability.

But since it will probably be a while before we make that purchase, I need to work with what I have, which is nothing really. I thought, maybe I should get a new comforter/duvet. had lots of options, plus I received an email coupon which usually pushes me over the edge. I wasn't really feeling any of them though. This was my favorite.

I liked the splash of yellow and thought this would look great with a yellow wall. But I don't know. Something about the pattern was irking me. I was talking to Rob about it this morning, and of course, his comment was, "What's wrong with our current stuff?"

Well, nothing really. It's great. I bought the Nourish bedding from Inhabit Living a year or two ago, and it's still lovely.

There really isn't any reason to NOT use it in the new house. In fact, instead of buying a new bedding ensemble, I could get a few pillows or new sheets something. Since we haven't ever had an actual bed, I have this hideously cheap blue bedskirt on right now, which looks ridiculous. So maybe I just need to update my bedding accessories. Maybe a pale celery colored wall. It could work!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Knock Offs

I've been seeing the gorgeous milk bottles from Three Potato Four all over the blogosphere lately. Can you say "covet"? They are so lovely, I can barely contain myself.

Unfortunately, as I have been mentioning in every single post, I am on a shoestring budget right now. And if Rob found out I bought a few $32 milk bottles, he'd most likely freak.

So, what's a girl to do? Check ebay, of course! While I would love to support a shop as wonderful as Three Potato Four, my wallet won't allow it right now. But I was able to find this collection of old bottles on ebay for $25 (including shipping), so I had to snatch them up.

And I also nabbed this lot of ten half-pint bottles for $16 (including shipping.) What a bargain! I can imagine them filled with buttons and ribbons.

True, they aren't as pretty, and they might be chipped or cloudy, but hopefully I can make them work!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Curtain Call

I need your help again. Pick me a shower curtain!

This is actually for the guest bathroom. The master bath doesn't need a shower curtain. The bathroom is going to be very white. White tile. White countertop. The cabinets, however, are a light pine color, the same as our kitchen cabinets. I kind of like the idea of doing a black and white bathroom. But color is so fun!

That curtain in the lower right hand corner (from cb2 is calling my name. But I hate painting bathrooms, so I don't know if it would look as nice if I leave the walls white.

What do you think?

Monday, April 14, 2008

Insert Girlie Shriek Here


Just got a call from the title company. We now officially have a settlement date!

April 30th, 2008

Ehem, eggsqueeze me? Baking powder? That's two weeks and two days away! Oh my gosh, I have a bajillion things to do.

She may not be pretty, but she's all mine!

I don't have a photo to go along with this post, but I had to make mention of the fact that I now officially own my 2003 Toyota Matrix! I bought it back in April of 2003, a few weeks prior to Rob and I moving out of our college townhouse and into our first apartment.

Five years (and sixty payments) later, she has quite a few dings, she's missing two hubcaps, and the numbers on the radio buttons have worn completely off, but on the plus side...


I'm such a grown up!

Philadelphia Film Festival

This past week was the Philadelphia Film Festival, so for the first time ever, I decided to take advantage of that. I ended up seeing six movies, and while I'm kind of happy that I can go home after work and spend an evening at home relaxing for the first time since April 3th, I'm disappointed that I won't always have such a diverse array of films at my disposal.

I'm no critic. I know nothing about film. So I refuse to give movie reviews because I know I'm not qualified to say anything more than, "I liked it" or "I didn't like it." So that's pretty much what I'll do.

The first film I saw was actually a collection of animated shorts. Some were funny, some were boring, some were eye candy. My favorite would have to be "Fantasie in Bubblewrap", which was video of bubble wrap with little faces superimposed on the bubbles. It was a few minutes of the bubbles freaking out and shrieking as a sadistic hand with a pencil destroyed them, one at a time. Hilarious!

Join Us
This was the one movie I really wanted to see. It was a documentary about a small religious cult and what happens to the folks that decide to leave and go through cult rehabilitation. Creepier than Jesus Camp. I was so captivated by the film that I ended up buying a book about cults, which was difficult to find. Apparently Barnes and Nobel and Borders don't carry books on cults.

Eleven Minutes
I had to see this, being a Project Runway fanatic and a Jay McCarroll fan. But it was even better than I could have imagined! I was nearly in tears from laughing so hard throughout this documentary! McCarroll is quite a character!

California Dreamin'
Described in the program book as an "astounding international comedy", I was really disappointed. First of all, I chuckled at one scene, but it was far more depressing than funny. Secondly, it had that shaky hand-held camera feel, so I started feeling sick after about 30 minutes, and the next 2 hours weren't any better. There are such great reviews for this film, so maybe I just didn't "get it". I can accept that. But I was checking my watch every five minutes. (Trailer below is not in English.)

The End
I'm glad Rob picked this documentary about Cockney gangsters. It was really entertaining, and I loved the art direction. I probably never would have chosen to see this movie, but I'm happy I did.

Son of Rambow
My favorite BY FAR! We almost skipped this one. Thank goodness we didn't! All I can say is that you have to watch the trailer, and if it comes to your town, I recommend seeing it!

Well, that's it! No more films for me. Maybe I can get back to my Netflix queue. I've had Before Night Falls at my house for a month. One thing that I really enjoyed was all the Q&A with the directors. I wish I could have that at every movie I see! Well, I'll be waiting for next year.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Walk All Over Me

I need a doormat. I don't know what happened to the fun stripey Target doormat we had at our previous residence. I think we left it there. But anyway, it was time for a new one. There doesn't seem to be a wide selection of this item out there, so this is what I could scrounge up. I believe our door is going to be red, if I want to get all psycho-coordinated and stuff.

Clockwise from top left: Hi There Doormat from Chiasso; Riviera Stripe Doormat from Crate and Barrel; Alana Doormat from Wrapables; Topiary Doormat from Smith & Hawken; Bubbles Doormat from Chiasso


P.S. Got a call from the builder today. Looks like there might be ANOTHER delay, but hopefully only a small one. They are having trouble getting the utility people out to our place. So they are really hoping for the end of April, but they said it might push into the beginning of May. *sigh*

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

The answer to my prayers?

Even though I'm super excited to paint the new house, I'm a little nervous. I'm scrawny and my arms tend to get tired immediately. But the worst part about it all is the taping. I freakin' hate it.

Is this the solution?

This is the Premium version. The standard one is handheld and the premium one can attach to an extension pole and pivot and such.

There were three great reviews about this product via Amazon, which gives me hope since all those other edging doohickies got terrible reviews. If this thing works like the reviewers say it will, then I am on board!

Yay or nay?

My mind has been focused on home decorating. Home decorating on a very, very skimpy budget. Since the majority of our money is going right to the down payment, we won't have much left over for anything other than blinds, paint, a garage door opener, garbage cans, and other new home necessities.

So I've been trying to work with what I have while adding some budget-conscious tweaks. I scored at Urban Outfitters this weekend. I didn't allow myself to look at any clothing (except for an awesome red and black scarf that I got on clearance, but that doesn't count), and I headed straight for the home section. The first thing I found was this amazing set of salt and pepper shakers for $1.99! I was flipping out because I had recently bookmarked something similar.

There was a big bin filled with clearance artwork, so I peeked through and found this Kathleen Lolley triptych for $9.99. It's three 8"x8" canvases with paintings of birds flying planes that look like birds. What could be more perfect? These are going in my powder room. I haven't taken a picture yet, but here's an image of one of the pieces.

Next stop, ebay! I purchased the Michael Miller fabric that I wanted for my kitchen at a discounted price. Woohoo! And I went looking for some projects. I am really pissed off at myself because I found this set of Syroco birds that I wanted terribly, but I was careless and forgot when the auction ended. So I missed it. But I'm keeping my eye out for these.

Then I thought maybe I could get some antique-y looking frames and paint them a bold color for a photo wall. I found these. I ended up losing the auction because I went to sleep, but the seller is giving me a second chance to buy the item for the price I bid ($30). It's 10 5x7 frames. Should I do it? It's a great price, but would it be better to just head out to thrift stores and garage sales and try to find a mish mash of frames instead? What do you think?

Monday, April 07, 2008

Living/Dining Room Dilemma

I think I'm pretty settled on the kitchen (I'm going with the purple) and my office. And I even picked out a great color for Rob's room. But I'm really stuck on the living/dining room area. Both rooms sort of make up one large room.

Here's the deal.

I went over some swatches and fabrics with Rob yesterday. He picked one out that I really like (upper left), but I'm afraid it isn't going to look right at all. Rob thinks a neutral wall will be best, but our couch and chair are neutral, so they almost match, which I don't like at all. Then again, they won't be sitting up against the wall, so maybe that won't matter as much. And then there's our floor. I feel like it's too orangey for that color scheme. I love the way the fabric looks with the couch, and I think it'll also look great covering the seats of our dining table. And I can even get new little shades (upper right) for the cheap chandelier we bought so it coordinates better. Ack! I don't know.

The couch and floor are throwing me off. I don't want to spend all my time in a super-tan room. I feel like I need some color. This is so hard.

EDIT: Maybe this? I really like the idea of light blue walls, but for some reason Rob was against it. I may have to override him on that one.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Yoo-hoo! Osama!

Last night Rob and I went to a free screening of Morgan Spurlock's (of Supersize Me fame) upcoming documentary Where in the world is Osama Bin Laden?, along with a Q&A with Spurlock after the movie.

What a great movie! I feel like I was able to take a lot away from it. I have to applaud Morgan Spurlock for making a movie about the Middle East that was simple enough for me, someone who knows very little about US foreign policy, and yet compelling enough for Rob, who is very knowledgeable on the subject, and happens to be currently reading two books about the Palestinian/Israeli conflict.

The only downside of the event was the irritating college student sitting across the aisle from us, who during the Q&A, frantically waved her hand around like an 8 year old the entire time, going "Oooh! Oooh! Oooh!" and mumbling loudly each time she was overlooked. SO FREAKIN' DISTRACTING! And her inappropriate question showed her level of immaturity because it was addressed in the movie, as well as by Spurlock when annoying chick's friend asked a similar question 10 minutes earlier. She was obviously so focused on trying to get "called upon" that she wasn't even listening to a word Spurlock was saying throughout the entire Q&A. I kind of wanted to punch her.

But despite that incident, it was an edumacational night that sparked much conversation between me and Rob on the subject of the Middle East. It's nice having a husband that is so interested in World Affairs so he can keep me updated.

Anyway, if the movie comes to your town, I suggest you see it. I have to put Supersize Me in my Netflix queue. I avoided it for a while because I love fast food so much! But I suppose it'd be good for me to watch it.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Kitchen & Office

I really need to start planning my new home. Hopefully I can have a week overlap on homes so I can get in there and paint without all that furniture in the way. If that happens, I have to have my colors and everything picked out soon. I went to Home Depot yesterday (we have a gift card that I've been saving), and I picked out a million paint chips and took photos of ceiling fans. I was like a Home Depot tourist.

Anyway, I might flip flop in the next few weeks, but here are some ideas. I found fabrics that I loved and tried to use them as inspiration for rooms. They might turn into curtains or wall art or something, who knows?

First is the kitchen.
I'm in love with this fabric (top left). And the kitchen is most likely the only place in the house where Rob would allow purple. I'd love to have the walls in the light, celery-esque green, but I'm thinking that with the light cabinets and the light flooring, a darker wall might work better. Any thoughts?

And then there's my office.

All of my office furniture is black-brown. And I need to get one of those Expedit bookcases from IKEA that everyone seems to have. The carpet is light cream berber. I thought this fabric (top left) was so much fun! So I think what I'd like to do is split the wall, either by installing a chair rail, or just having a mock chair rail stripe. I haven't decided yet.

I have to figure something out for Rob's Nerdy Education Room, the bedroom, the bathrooms, and the hardest of them all, the living/dining room area. So many color options! And I'm not a fan of painting (probably because of my scrawny, weak arms), so once I do this, I want to make sure I don't have to do it again for a while!

Any thoughts?