Tuesday, February 28, 2012

photoshop redo: living room

so after my last post with my photoshopped bathroom "redo" i decided that i really wanted to do the living room as well :)

as you can see there really isn't much to our living room right now. originally we were supposed to put josh's couch in the extra room AKA "man cave" but unfortunately it won't fit through the door due to the angle of the door next to the guest bathroom. and the lamp? yea...you got me. ??

if you saw the post with the bathroom redo - you can tell that between the bathroom and the living room i am really wanting to brighten it with bright neutrals and pops of color.

if you're interested in where these are from - here are the sources below:

source: laylagrayce
(note: will definitely not be spending $200 on each lamp - but its my inspiration)

source: pinterest
 (note: will be recreating my own on canvas)

source: pbfingers.com
(note: will be recreating myself)

source: etsy shop
(note: will be recreating myself)
("hunter trunk": $599)

source: overstock
"handmade soho chrono grey wool rug" $370

"verano sofa" $1799

source: etsy shop
(note: will be creating my own)

source: world market
"sourav end table" $170

source: pier one
"white wooden hanging tealight lantern" $32

(note: again, probably won't be buying $200 in pillows, but its inspiration)

source: amazon

Monday, February 27, 2012

austin and such

over the weekend, the hubby and i had a mini-vacation in austin. we had mini-adventures, reunions, and celebrated my godfather, lee's birthday. 

ever since josh saw "the salt lick" on the food network he has been dying to visit. so since we were in austin, i knew where we HAD to eat on saturday afternoon :)

they are known for their bbq and apparently wine as well. so we ate some great bbq and picked up a bottle of wine called "hill country blend". so fitting :)

eventually josh and i want to put a pergola in our tiny, quaint backyard and we saw this and decided to snap a pic for inspiration. you can't see it very well in the pic but i LOVE the glass spheres above the table for outdoor lighting!

our second stop was to visit the restaurant: oasis.
when i was in college it was still being rebuilt due to the fire back some years ago.
net-net: absolutely gorgeous, but the food was "eh".
recommendation: if you want the same view but better food/drinks go next door to billys bbq - they have an awesome beer sampler :) 

the cute hubby :)

the view at oasis:
unfortunately the lake is still very low. everywhere there is light dirt - there should be water :( 

so that night we were supposed to go see ester follies show (kinda like snl) but we were too late, so we made our way to a bar on 6th street

this was on the band's song request sheet and had to snap a pic :)

one of my old friends, isabel found out i was in austin and had us meet up with her at red7. 
cloud nothings was the band playing and they were amazing! so amazing in fact that i am still regaining my hearing and hope to have the ringing in my ears go away soon. ha :) 

isabel and i :)

on our way out, we had breakfast at this super cute place called "snack bar" and this was the sign outside. it was such a good shot with all of the colors, i immediately regretted not having my camera. but as the saying goes "the best camera is the one you have on you"


since going paleo, i have been craving spaghetti super bad, but fortunately, i found this great recipe for paleo "spaghetti". instead of noodles, you julienne zucchini and it was actually better than regular spaghetti! paleo ftw!

word of caution: in order to "julienne" zucchini, you will probably need a mandolin. 
mandolin = sharp blade. 
sharp blade = slit finger (ow)

oh! and i got this inexpensive ipad kitchen holder! let's just say josh was not a fan of seeing the ipad next to the stove with cooking oils accidentally getting too close 
(and possibly getting the the screen)

it even comes with a pen so you never have to touch the ipad!

another paleo friendly snack i tried out were kale chips! super yummy and seriously satisfies cravings for chips :)

its just olive oil and a touch of salt in the oven at 350 for 12 mins!

another cool thing with starting the new paleo diet is that we got rid of all of the processed foods and any sugar/beans/wheat products and got to donate it to our local church! whats kind of bothersome though, is how there was pretty much nothing left besides tea and seasoning. makes you kinda think about how many processed foods we're (or we) eating

here is all of the food we donated :)

oh and the most exciting thing about this post (at least to me) is we got our new microwave installed today! we have probably gone the last two months without one. we had just been too busy to order one until last week! :)

 so today (actually in about one hour) i will be starting at washington gym. its the same gym that josh started about a month ago. we'll see how it goes the first day, but after knowing how josh's first day went - lets just say i'm equally scared as i am excited haha

new gym = excuse to buy new shoes, right?
 i did a search on pinterest and i found these bad boys. after searching and searching multiple stores for these, i realized they were customized :)

mine will say "mrs monkey" 
(between the tongues on the shoes)


i got my order in from the impossible project! the impossible project finds and restores vintage polaroid cameras and additionally reproduces film with different filters on it. so excited to use it!

 so i decided, that when i have a vision for a different part of the house, i am going to photoshop my rough ideas/decor. that way its easier for me to keep track of things and also to see if i will  even like it. better than buying and then taking back!

below is our guest bathroom, which it very outdated and BLAH.
for the most part, i am just wanting to create some color contrast in the bathroom. as you can see its all one tone. plus the lighting in the bathroom is horrible and makes it have a yellow/drab cast.

for the items above the toilet:

the print is some lyric art that i made that says:
"don't do nothing because you can't do everything. do something. anything"

as far as the flowers: they will be "faux" peonies. white peonies were our wedding flowers
and the two black and white images next the flowers?: one is a sunset of cabo (where we got married) and the other is the houston skyline (where we live)

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

birthday and bachelorette festivities

this past weekend was one of my good friend, lauren's bachelorette/birthday party in austin. the days prior to this past weekend were filled with lots of crafty surprises and presents for the guest of honor.

part of the night of the bachelorette, i wanted to do a "toast" drink before we went out. since it was such a special occasion, i wanted to do some sort of champagne toast. i had been eyeing a pinterest craft with painted bottles with writing on them (the tutorial had the bottles in black though) and i thought the white and gold was more fun. i will definitely say that it was spot on in the tutorial was to not take the cork closure off (the part with the wiring). why? let's just say the first bottle doesn't have a top on it anymore and i definitely thought a gun went off in my garage when it randomly decided to "pop off"

as i mentioned not only was it lauren's bachelorette, it was also her birthday too. not wanting to shadow her birthday by her bachelorette, i wanted to also have something for her birthday as well. i had seen a pinterest (surprise, surprise) tutorial on ombre sugar hearts that i had wanted to try as well. lauren's birthday was definitely a perfect excuse to try it out! it was super easy and fun! loved how they came out. (can't wait to do different shapes and colors!)

trying to be secreative, i asked lauren what her favorite colors were and she said blue or pink. i decided the birthday girl should have it all so i made bright blue frosting along with the pink ombre hearts. also, saw some blinged our candles on pinterest too and thought it was definitely something i wanted to add to make it as girly as possible!

here is what the cake looked like in the center (three pink ombre cake layers)

the other craft i made or DIY was her bachelorette scavenger hunt. i designed the inside with photo shop and googled the "to-do" list from various websites. after i printed it off on some card stock i felt like it need it little more bling so i taped this white glittery card stock to the back and wrapped a single ribbon around it for the "closure"

i also made some wedding cake pops but forgot to take a picture of them :(

on a side note: i made a few other things as well since my last post (almost all baking)

this was for valentine's day. 
red velvet heart shaped cake made from scratch. too bad i already had everything to buy it before josh and i went paleo. but at least lauren's fiance, zach got to enjoy it :)

needing some sweets around the house after going paleo. i made these DELICIOUS paleo chocolate chip cookies!  

paleo chocolate chip cookies recipe:

3 cups almond flour
.5 c coconut oil
.5 c pure maple syrup
2 eggs
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1.5 c semi-sweet chocolate chips

preheat oven to 375 degrees
in a medium mixing bowl combine dry ingredients
in a small mixing bowl beat eggs, maple syrup, and vanilla extract with a hand mixer
pour wet ingredients into dry and beat with a hand mixer until combined
melt coconut oil, pour into batter, and continue to blend until combined
stir in chocolate chips
on a parchment lined baking sheet, drop balls of dough about a tblspn in size
bake for 15 mins and wahla!

oh yea, and one of my recent shoots was featured on The Wedding Chick's sister blog: OnToBaby.com

(happy dance!) 

Monday, February 20, 2012


i'm not typically the kind of person that gets on "bandwagons" per se, so when i had heard about paleo for the first time, i thought it was just another south beach diet, atkins, etc. 

a few months later, my husband decided to join washington gym to get in shape. well, it ended up being more than just a gym where you pay a monthly due and just show up as you can. its a whole lifestyle and regime  change. its not where you go to a class or workout session. each day is focused on a different body area and its organized so that in order to get the best results, you should be going four or five times a week so that you receive a full body work-out by the time the week is over. 

the other requirement is that you eat paleo. 
what's paleo? paleo is short for paleolithic, and the whole idea is that you eat like a caveman aka the way our ancestors ate prior to the transition to an agriculture society, back when we were hunters and gatherers. meaning, eating only meats, fruits, veggies, and healthy fats. 

when i first heard that, i was thinking...oh great another trendy diet. which was fine for josh if it helped him get to his target weight, but oh, not me...i don't need to lose weight and after all thats the only point of these trends.......right?

the other reason why i just wasn't so sure about it is because on the paleo diet you cannot eat my two most favorite foods in the whole wide world:

dairy and grains

but, being a supportive wife, i decided to at least help make lunches and cook dinner that were paleo, but i was still going to eat my two favorite foods on the side. but then, being the "googler" i am, i started to look at this whole paleo lifestyle and ultimately decided to get a book on it.

literally, only about two chapters into the booked i was hooked. why? usually when someone is trying to convince you to try a diet, its all about weight loss, weight loss, weight loss. but this was different, every "life-changing" story was about a disease reversal, or someone getting off of medications that they had been on for years, or an increase in energy...and oh yea - by the way it happened in sixty days or less and oh yea...they lost 30 lbs....and hadn't even gone to the gym.
every chapter made me hungry to read the next. and finally i got to the science behind it, bc i was just so curious as to why the heck this diet prohibited me from my favorite foods.

the net-net without overwhelming you is that dairy and grains (legumes included aka beans) are bad for you because all of those sugars and the way your body breaks them down. causing your body to be inflammed. did you know that inflammation in your body causes the following:

heart disease
acid reflux
kidney disease
and pretty much any auto-immune disease

still not convinced?

not have any of those problems? me neither nor most people i know. but let me tell you how much its made a difference in josh and i's life in the past TEN days. yep. TEN.
i'm not going to bore you with the specific situations and long stories but i will list to you the benefits that we have experienced:

josh used to come home every day from work ready to sleep at 7pm - now he helps cook dinner, cleans, and is happier than i have seen him in years

josh has gone down about 3 belt loops
josh's mother is wearing pants she hasn't been able to wear in five years
josh's dad has lost an additional 3 inches after plateauing in weight loss on another diet

i have been suffering from IBS since i graduated college and i haven't had one symptom
i was also on medication for heartburn and its gone and i am off of my medicine

both josh and i have issues within this section and have not had a single issue

i went a good friend's bachelorette party this weekend, i am sure i don't have to get into any details if you have ever been to one. and guess what? i woke up early and was full of energy each morning i woke up. can't say that was the case before. i am not saying you should eat paleo so you can drink whatever you want and have no hangover. my point is your body recovers alot faster that it would before.

this is just 10 days into the diet. both josh and i have horrible cholesterol and in 60 days we will be going in to see our blood work. did i mention the average points in cholesterol that people drop in just 45 days is 30 points?

ok, i promise i am almost off my soap box.
just want to touch on one more subject that i get the most questions about..."but my life is so busy, i don't have time to cook every meal and it sounds hard to find paleo" OR "but i just love grains and dairy"
trust me: i felt the same way but i am going to give you some examples where you can make it work or to show it that paleo isn't all that hard.

breakfast example:

doesn't this look like a average breakfast? i mean come on - you can still have BACON. the only thing missing here is toast. not too shabby if you ask me.

top left: crock pot beef stew
top right: butternut squash soup
bottom left: sweet potato casserole
bottom right: mashed cauliflower

did i mention that all of these have about 5 ingredients or less and super fast and easy?

lunch: pei wei
its an almond chicken salad and honestly i enjoyed this more than dishes i have had with rice.

lastly, i am going to leave you with some great resources fro recipes just so you can see what kind of foods you are still able to eat. 

oh and are thinking about having kids soon? if so, even if you aren't interested in it for yourself - just check out this woman's experience with a "paleo pregnancy" - its down right ridiculous.

if you have any questions i would love to help out in any way

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