Saturday, August 27, 2011

fall preview.

okay okay. i know i wasn't going to put anything fallish up until at least september. however, i had a little project to do. and i wanted it done. mostly because there were a few things i have that i wanted to spray paint white. i also wanted to paint some of my fall decor white. so really, i was just trying to be smart and make sure that i would have enough paint for everything.... that's my story. and it's pretty much true.

so what i did was i bought three little pumpkins with picks on them from hobby lobby. i also bought a grapevine wreath. they have some really nice ones. and they were half off. i paid $2 for this sucker. that's awesome. it's really pretty. so anyway, i painted the little pumpkins white.. so naturally i wanted to see how they would look on the wreath. then i naturally wanted to see how the wreath would look hanging up. which led to me changing around the stuff on the mantel. which makes me wonder what i'm doing because i am going to change it again next week with all my fall stuff. but now i really like it. darn me and my impatience.

so this is what my mantel looked like after that

i'm really loving the silver/green/white/blue combo. i'm going to find it hard to change it now for fall. dang it. i feel like it looks so pottery barn-ish. okay, maybe not exactly but it has that feel. and i'm loving the wreath.

so i liked it a lot, but i knew it needed some height (thanks for teaching me those things mom : )) so i decided to do it the free way and just gather sticks and put them in the pitcher. sticks are fall-ish right? so now it looks like this

i don't know. what do you think? is it too stick-y with the wreath and all those sticks? i mean, how many sticks does a mantel need? or is it natural and fabulous? i can't tell. i like both ways honestly. hmm. tricky.

anyway, this is my fall preview. don't you love my wreath? i mean, i don't want to brag or anything, but i'm totally in love with it and i think it's so pretty. see? mixing the natural with the feminine is a winner. always. i want another one on the door. i probably will try to do something else though because i mean... you can't have the same wreath all over your house, right? oh, by the way this wreath in total cost me about $5. that's pretty good. considering i'm in love with it and i want to leave it up all year. but i won't. don't worry : ).

oh, also. i maintain that it is now acceptable to talk about fall considering i got three fall catalogs yesterday. yup. better homes and gardens, pb kids, and ballard. if it's good enough for them, it's good enough for me. that's what i always say.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

best salsa ever.

okay. this is not my recipe. i take zero credit for this. i did it exactly as the recipe said. and it. is. delicious.

i am sure many of you have heard of vivienne from the v spot and she is the one who created the recipe for this salsa. it is so fresh. so tasty. so incredibly yummy. a good spice to it, but so refreshing at the same time. it tastes like the salsa from those authentic mexican restaurants you go to, you know? i found this recipe 3 weeks ago and i have already made this salsa twice. and it makes a TON. i am not sure if i will ever go back to jars again.

the first time i made it exactly like she did, except i got one giant can of peeled whole tomatoes instead of 2 little cans. oh, i also make it in my blender since i don't have a food processor. i found my salsa to be a little too liquidy the first time. it was still amazing salsa, but just a little watery. i probably used less cilantro than she did too. i like cilantro in small quantities because it is stah-rong. so the second time i made the salsa i drained half the juice from the tomato can, then dumped the rest in. it was pretty perfect. i love this stuff.

make sure you also have a glass of sun tea. also, if you're a good blogger remove boxes from the background of your pictures. i am clearly not a good blogger. : )

do yourself a favor. make the salsa and chips then make this recipe (also from vivienne) and just set it all out to have a picnic in the living room. that's what we did and it was so fun. and easy. then we had a monk marathon since they have the whole series on netflix. but you can watch whatever you want : ) so we watched monk. ate chips and the freshest salsa i have ever experienced. and had apples malloy for dessert. do this. i promise you will not be disappointed.

apples malloy. yummmm. i really did make this. there was not time to take a picture. it's that good. this is vivienne's picture (clearly).

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

my mom doesn't think i'm the worst blogger ever. don't worry.

so the other day my mom said something to me. she said, "jessica. you are the worst blogger ever. when are you going to write something?" then today when i called her about the fall sale at hobby lobby (so many pretty things all 40%-50% off. go there!) as we were getting off the phone she said, "write on your blog! bye!" so this is me. writing on my blog. to make my mother happy : )

also because i want to. and also because it's been awhile. again. and i am sorry for that. things haven't been changing too much here. it seems like i am in buying mode lately. i haven't done many projects because i am just waiting for inspiration. i want a project to go, bam! and hit me so when i think about it, i just have to do it. you know what i mean? like when you see a picture or something and you think, oh i just have to do that. yah, that hasn't happened really..

in the mean time i have had fun finding great sales and deals on things. i will tell you what i am most excited for. fall!! listen. hobby lobby has a huge christmas section already, so i don't think i am too far off talking about fall. in fact, september 1st i am going to put my fall stuff out. hey, kids are back to school. it's fair game. don't judge me. i don't even care if you do though. i am putting out my mantel stuff and there is nothing you can do to stop me. at least i am waiting until september. that's more than i can say for pottery barn. sheesh. : )

okay so i won't leave you without a project update. i finally finally finally hung my headboard. about 85 months ago i bought a door to act as a headboard from a builder surplus store in atlanta. i needed to cut it down a bit, then i had to paint it, then figure out how to hang a heavy door on the wall. it was much more work than it sounds, okay? well, not more work for me. it was more work for my stepdad haha. since he loves me sooo much, he trimmed the excess off of both sides of the door, then i painted it, then he figured out how to hang it. he ended up buying a piece of wood (i don't know dimensions people. i leave the numbers to the carpenters. i decorate, okay?) then he cut the wood in half long ways at an angle. then we attached one piece to the wall with the angle facing up, and the other to the door with the angle facing down. i should have taken a picture. i didn't. whoops. it was apparently important for us to find the studs in the wall so it would hold the weight of the door. we did that with what they call a stud finder. not very complicated.

so once both pieces of wood were attached we just had to slide the door down onto the piece that was on the wall. it was easy. mostly because other people did it for me : ). i love it. it looks so good and my pillow doesn't fall between my bed and the wall when i'm sleeping anymore.

i love the slats in the door. it reminds me of shutters a little bit. so cute. and i painted the edges persimmon by martha. i love it a lot. it adds another dimension to our room.

pretty, huh? it totally grounds the bed and makes it so much more important. necessary.



umm and the reason my pillows are in a different configuration is because i never make my bed... so umm.. i don't remember how they go.

also, my mom isn't mean. she is very supportive and loves my blog. she just likes it when i make an entry once in awhile. love you mom : )

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

IKEA, gilmore girls, and excuses.

sorry for the absence lately guys! i haven't had much time for projects lately. last week was full of things to do. i actually did a project, but it was for my sister. the girl just up and moved to her own apartment : ) she moved in thursday last week, so the week was full of helping her get things ready, making an oh-so-cute mirror for her cute room, then moving her in.

over the weekend we had a prayer conference at church. it was so. great. it went all day saturday, but it seemed like it went by so fast. i learned so much about God. who He is and how He wants us to talk to Him.. it was so awesome. seriously. life changing stuff.

and now this week i am back to being a full-time housewife. school has officially started for the kids down here, so phil is back to full time teaching this week. part of me is sad about it. part of me feels bad for him that his summer time is over... but part of me can't help but feel happy about life being back to a normal routine. and let's not forget what the start of school brings with it.... : ) yep. fall!!! can. not. wait. LOVE fall! okay, so anyway. i feel kinda glad life has been busy in a different way lately. i love doing projects and blogging, but i love to get away from it every once in awhile. i like to make sure i am blogging because i want to, not because i feel i need to. every once in awhile i lose a little steam on projects and i switch my focus to something else. i'll get my focus back. soon.

which reminds me, i love wallpaper. i know that is a totally random thing to say right now, but i went to sherwin williams with my mom to look at paint swatches and let me tell you. they had books of some of the most beautiful wallpaper i have ever seen. i seriously need some wallpaper. too bad i live in an apartment... i will just have to get a huge frame and frame it somewhere. it's so lovely... i think somebody would probably end up hurt if i tried to really wallpaper something... that would be an interesting game haha.

so anyway, forgive me for not being around lately. and forgive me for taking even more time still. i have no projects in mind for this week. actually, i just maybe might end up going to IKEA this week. my sister needs some things, and what better place to go when you need things than IKEA? for real. plus, i know i may be judged for this, but i just bought the entire gilmore girls series on ebay with some of my birthday money. can we say gilmore girls marathon? so yah, unless i can do a project while i'm watching... it might be another week or so until i do a project. just being honest.

oh, but if you're lucky i might come here and tell you all about the fabulous salsa i have started making myself. it's delish. haha that's rachael ray. anyway. it is. i'll tell you about it sometime. : )

this is a picture of me and my sister in the car. i hope we will reenact this on friday. on our way to IKEA!! (no pressure beck. we can go wherever you want : ))

Monday, August 8, 2011

guest posting!!

hey guys! today i am guest posting over at life with the hawleys! darby writes such a fun and beautiful blog filled with all kinds of different things. she rents also and loves decorating and diy-ing so we became instant blog friends : )

she has started a series called "marital mondays" for august and asked ME to write a post for it!! so go there and check out my post! i talk all about my marriage with phil and how we learned to be married. be prepared, you will want to stick around darby's blog for a bit and see all this girl has been up to. check her out!!

and if you've come over here from darby's blog, HI! stay awhile! click that follow button maybe. you know, whatever. : )

Saturday, August 6, 2011

my bathroom is finished! ish.

so after a few months and a lot of procrastination saving up money for bathroom projects i think i am calling my bathroom done! ish. the only thing i have left to do is fix the paint in some areas on the wall. and buy another rug. then it'll really be done. yay! but since it's pretty much done i decided i would just say it is. and not just because i need something to blog about. let's be honest... that paint may never get fixed on the walls. so i figure that means i can call it finished.

okay let's take a look back waaaay back when i started this process

hmm. pretty dull. and boring. and red. blech.

then i found some inspiration

gorgeous, right? still love this...

that picture has been floating around, but i believe it comes from martha stewart. love her. so with this in mind i went to work on my bathroom. here it is today

i wish i had a wide lens so you could see the whole thing. it's so pretty. i love it. it's pretty and soothing and considering it's a guest bathroom and i can finally feel good about letting guests use it, i'd say "it's a good thing." (did you get my martha stewart impression? did it translate over the internet? i hope so.) 

so now if you ever come visit me, i'll let you use my bathroom : ). no, i would have let you use it before of course, i'm not a freak. i'll just feel much happier about your experience in my bathroom if you use it now. did this just get weird? hmm. 

hooray for a bathroom reveal!!!!  

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

package in the mail!!

so i got something today...!!!

awhile ago something awesome happened to me. i won a giveaway!!! laura at corner house was giving away an amazing paper wreath. it. is. adorable. and beautiful. and cute. and the moment i saw it i said, ohhh i need to make that!! but i can't because i would have to buy the martha stewart scallop punch thingy and i don't have money for that right now.. plus it would never look as lovely as hers! then i found out there was a giveaway going on. i said, oh i need to win me this wreath. i still had my spring wreath up. it was time. so i entered. and prayed that i could pleasepleaseplease win this wreath!

and then i did. and guess what... IT CAME TODAY!! i have been waiting and waiting and waiting patiently and the mail lady knocked on my door this morning. i got the box and looked at the adress and i said, MY WREATH IS HERE!!!! and i ripped that sucker open. and i didn't mess around, it was already on the door after only being in my possession for about 3 minutes (1 minute was spent opening the package, another was spent getting the ribbon the right length for my door. otherwise it would have taken me 60 seconds flat). just look at this lovely

i know, best giveaway win ever, right? i love it!! it's so beautiful and it's made so well. and it arrived in perfect condition. i feel like i need to send laura a gift now because this thing is just so pretty, i feel guilty just accepting it for free!

but i am so glad my wreath is here hanging love-ily on my door : )

Monday, August 1, 2011

a look back.

i'm excited right now because my friend darby at life with the hawleys is starting a series called marital mondays for august. each monday somebody will be guest posting and writing about marriage, and she asked ME to write one! i will be making an appearance on the 15th, but i just wrote the post and sent it on over so it's fresh on my mind. i'm so excited about it! i hope everyone will check out her blog and especially check it out the day i guest star over there : ) do not worry, i WILL remind you!

so as i was writing the post (i won't give anything away darby, don't worry!) i of course was reflecting on my marriage and how far phil and i have come. as i did that i also realized how far i've come as a decorator. and how much our surroundings have changed since we were married.

we lived in st. louis when we first got married and we had basically nothing. phil had been living with two other guys before we were married and they had supplied most of the furniture. which meant he had none. which meant we had none. : ) just before we were married we bought a new bed. i figured of all the furniture you need in life, a bed was the most important to me. so basically we had a bed. and nothing else. it was an adventure. thank God for craigslist because we found an entire living room of furniture for $300. and this is what my apartment looked like

pretty, huh? haha

it was nice furniture and good for us for just starting out. it was just old. very old. but i was happy to have furniture at all, so i wasn't into complaining about age.

unfortunately this set didn't come with a dining table so this was our dining room

a card table with a sheet on it : )

it makes me laugh to see these pictures and think how far God has brought us in 3 years. and how many things He has blessed us with since...

after a little while (after i got over being overwhelmed at being in a brand new marriage) i started actually decorating and added a little color to the living room.. which also makes me laugh

no matter my skill, i was completely in L-O-V-E with this fireplace and stained glass window situation.. *sigh* if i could have just taken this wall with me when i left....

finally some color and decor : )

and just because it makes me laugh here is our teeny tiny one little bathroom

haha oh dear...

this place was old. i'm talkin like over 100 years old. not like, built in the '70s old. it was drafty. the basement was scary and dungeon-y. we had plastic over our 100 year old windows. our heat broke 4 times during the winter and left us without heat for days. our landlords were kind of awful. in fact, one of them used our bathroom without our knowledge while we were gone for the day and we came back to something very unpleasant left on the floor... (yah. i don't know how, we have tried to figure out how that happens. we haven't figured out yet how a human being leaves a number 2 on the floor..) st louis was so far from my family. i hated my job. the weather was the worst; hot as georgia in the summer, cold as michigan in the winter. it was a challenge.

but i miss it. it was our first place. we learned to be married there. we experienced the newlywed days there. we made great friends. we did fun things in the city. we made our own schedule and routines and traditions there. even though it was hard and i didn't love it during the time i was there, i have a fondness in my heart for it. st. louis is lovely in the fall : )

i'm happy to be where i am now, but i like to look back every so often and remember. many times i remember things better than they were, but i kinda like that. it makes me feel like i have a really nice past.. i thank the Lord though that i have become a better decorator! : )