Paisley Love

First of all, thanks for all of the responses on my New Year’s resolution post.  It was scary putting something so honest and vulnerable out there and it was nice to know that I’m not the only one.

Now, lets chat about decor shall we?

While at the library with my girls, I was reading through an old Country Living when I came across a room I had loved but forgotten about (as so many things go by the wayside when you pin a million things a day).  This room…

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It’s the wallpaper that does it for me.  The paper is Paisley Circles by Sanderson.  It’s the large scale that really gets me.  I’d love an entire room covered in this in my home, preferably my bedroom but I’d take Grace’s room.

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Pretty, isn’t it?  Would you cover a room in this?

January 9, 2015 at 5:58 AM 1 comment

Making Friends

It finally feels time to dust off my computer.  Let the words flow to my finger tips, as they play their song vigorously on my keyboard.  Writing has always been my outlet.  My journey marker.  My favorite form of expression.  I hope to carve out time to let the joy of writing back into my life.

My previous post was all about looking back on 2014.  Today, I rise again and look to set a goal for the blossoming new year.  While there are a million things I’d love to improve, personal quirks that make me cringe or deeply formed habits that I’d love to wish away, I like to focus on just one thing in the hopes that perhaps I will meet the goal.

This year, in my mid thirties (cringe), it’s time to face something that I actually find quite challenging – making friends.  Yep, friends.

You see, I actually have a whole slew of friends…apparently, I feel I have to qualify myself so I don’t come off as a complete loser (see above to habits I’d like to wish away).

But, in the neighborhood I live in – I’ve got nothing.  In the city I live in, I’ve got one.  I love to say to my friends who live in SF, “come move to Burlingame, I’ll introduce you to my one friend”  And my one friend and I aren’t on BFF terms yet.  Although, I’m working on it.  We don’t text each other throughout the day with random thoughts.  We don’t laugh so hard we have a little tinkle from our lovely post baby bodies.  We’re both coming off of pregnancies and so we haven’t even hit a tequila bar together yet.  But, it’ll happen.  Because all those things are on my new years resolution list to do with her.  Little does she know.

This may be one of my toughest resolutions yet.  Because it’s a bit out of my control.  The only thing I can do is attempt to set up a play date and then wait as cooly as I possibly can for a response.  “oh what’s that?  you want to meet up?  no big deal at all” I wasn’t at home sweating over the whole thing.

Sweat I do, my dear “internet friends” (as my husband refers to you).  I’m horrible at making the first move; it makes me waaaay too nervous.  In fact, I’m lousy at picking the strand back up when people reach out to me.  I lose touch easily.  I kind of hate talking on the phone.  And I lose my phone at least once a day.

Making friends in your 30’s is tough.  Making friends with an initially shy demeanor is brutal.  But, I’m going for it.  Cause my god hanging out with friends, true friends, is ridiculously fun.  It’s time I build that community again.

So, here’s old me, someone whose pretty relaxed on parenting but really enjoys it and doesn’t feel like complaining about it all the time; someone who is pretty much down for a glass of wine if offered, no matter the time; someone who loves to talk design and all things gorgeous but could give a rats ass if your home is in disarray or not how you’d like it to look – I promise I won’t judge; someone who is always down for a good laugh and prefers not to take things too seriously.  Yes, this is my friend profile.

There it is.  It’s officially out there.  Time to start making some awkward phone calls and creeping other moms out at the park with my “hows it going?” icebreakers.  Good Lord, I hate this.  Wish me luck.

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Photo fittingly taken by the first friend I ever made and a BFF for life when I ran into her on the streets of Palo Alto and it brightened my whole day.  Hi Jules!

January 8, 2015 at 5:55 AM 14 comments

Looking Back at 2014

Something I love most about Christmas is that it allows for the time to look back and reflect on the year.  This year was chock full of blessings.

At the start of 2014, I was newly pregnant with the greatest surprise of our lives – Miss Grace Katharine herself.

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In August she arrived and she has made life all the sweeter.  She is one of those dream babies that you talk about quietly, knowing that you won’t make any friends at the park because of sheer jealousy.  Honestly, I didn’t know these type of babies really existed.  I thought they were an urban legend.

She sleep trained herself at eight weeks.  Say what?  I know – not making any friends.  She can go with the flow, probably due to the fact that’s the only thing she knows.  If she has to wait a bit to get her bottle because I’m dealing with a melting toddler, she gets it.  I mean sure there will be tears but sometimes Grace’s tears will stop and she’ll just sit there and watch me with this look of, “let my sister be dramatic, I’ll wait my turn”

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Grace laughs huge guttural laughs.  She will giggle when she gets attention.  She’ll giggle when you touch noses.  And she will shriek with laughter when her sister does pretty much anything that is within her view.  Josie, you have your number one fan.  You’re welcome.

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Grace is a mover.  Since birth she’s been constantly kicking her legs.  I don’t even know how many marathons she’s run yet in her mind but it’s a lot.  And in the bath she is the fastest of all.  She loves water.  Bath water mixed with her sister playing is pretty much Grace’s dream combo.

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Josie has stepped into her role as older sister with gusto and delight.  Her first word when she wakes up and her last word as she drifts off to sleep is consistently, “baby.”  She gives Grace kisses and hugs and is delighted with her new audience member.

But the blessings didn’t stop there.

We have a house of our very own!  Since May we have been proud home owners and suburbanites.  While I miss the city, the move has been wonderful for our family.  The girls are flourishing, running around in their own space.  We couldn’t be happier knowing that these walls are ours.

And what walls they are, if I do say so myself.  Every day, I fall a bit more in love with our home.  From the iron window casings to the juliet balcony, the home is filled with character.  We are so in love.  And it is truly a dream to slowly make this home more “us” from ripping up carpet to changing out light fixtures slowly but surely we will get there.

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From our happy filled home to yours, wishing you all the merriest and brightest of Christmases and may your dreams come true in 2015.

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December 24, 2014 at 11:23 AM 4 comments

Christmas Tablescaping

Oh, hey there.  So, I’ve been away the longest ever since I started this blog almost five years ago now.  I’ve been hanging with my sweet little ones and not doing much in way of design.  Grace is four months old now and she is scrumptious!  She has the sweetest disposition.

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Yesterday, I did do something design wise; I set the table for an early Christmas dinner that we had with my mom, since we won’t be spending the actual day together.  There are few things I enjoy more then putting together a tablescape.  Here’s what I put together for the table –

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The runner is silk Ikat fabric that I got from this ETSY shop based out of Turkey; the wreath is Trader Joe’s; then three pillar candles that I picked up from Cost Plus; the napkins are from there as well; the china is my wedding china and I absolutely love taking them out and the gold silverware is a thriftstore find.  There you have it.  All stuff I already had around the house just layered together for a festive dinner.

It was also so much fun to use our new dining room chairs and we already have a rug, people.  Alleluia!

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I got it off of One King’s Lane.  I loved the pop of fuchsia around the border –

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Thanks to my assistant for sleeping on the job, it actually was really helpful.

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If I don’t write again before Christmas, Merry Merry.  I hope you have a wonderful, special, beautiful holiday!

December 19, 2014 at 5:29 AM Leave a comment

Catalog Browsing

I’m writing this post during the girls nap time to let you know that my mind has lost its way lately.  It may be due to living with an almost two year old.  She was a puddle of tears this morning because she couldn’t wear the wooden shoe form I have sitting on our bookshelf.

I thought I pulled off a major accomplishment by dressing Grace today, instead of just putting her from one set of PJs to the next, but I ended up dressing my three month old in business casual.

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And just moments ago, I thought I’d make myself hot chocolate to blog with.  Sounds amazing, right?  I then grabbed a coffee cup from the cupboard and microwaved it for one minute, completely empty.  I’ll just file that under things not to admit on the internet.

So, dear, beloved, thanks for sticking around, readers – I present to you stuff I like from catalogs we receive lately because Josie loves looking through them with me; she thinks they are picture books.

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Boden Padded Parka

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Soho Ankle Boot

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Diaper Tote

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Pheasant Print Pillow

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Nordic Tree Basket

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Rose Gold Garland

Tempting, right?  You send me a catalog, Josie and I will sit down, read it and ooh and ahh over it, no matter what.  I’m talking to you, Hammacher Schlemmer.

November 20, 2014 at 5:10 AM 5 comments

What Lies Beneath…

You know when you have company coming over and you throw all embarrassing messes into a closet?  Or is that just me?  Did everyone grow out of that stage a couple years post college?  Cause I’m still in it.

Well, one embarassment that I couldn’t throw into a closet was our absolutely disgusting dining room carpet.

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In case you have terrible site, here is a close up of the stains.

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Disgusting.  Like frat house gross.  It was already pretty bad when we bought the place and then Josie spilled a gigantic bowl of spaghetti with marinara sauce on it and well it was just a downward spiral after that.  It is really embarassing when we have people over.  I find myself apologizing for it immediately and actually just pointing it out at the same time.  Awesome.

Since moving in, we’ve spent months wondering what lies beneath the carpet.  We were hopeful that there was hardwood floor but we weren’t fully sure.  The neighbors homes were built by the same architect in the 40’s and they both have terricota tile in parts so there was a chance that was what was there.  Regardless, we had no idea the condition.  So we waited until we had some more savings in case we needed to redo the flooring.

This weekend, Graham ripped up the carpet and I helped lift up the staples and clean out all the dust.  About four hours of teamwork later and take a look at what we have now…

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I mean how lucky are we?!!

There are some very minor spots to touch up with a wood finish pen and wood filler.  Overall, the floor is in fantastic condition and the stain is just perfect.  What an upgrade!!!  Don’t need to throw anything in the closet anymore.

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There are still more tweaks I need to do to the dining room but it’s on the right track.

We also recently got new dining room chairs that you see above.  I went to the Oly Studio warehouse sale with the intention of buying nothing for myself.  But, I went, saw these chairs at about 90% off.  I’ve always been a huge fan of the klismos chair and I absolutely love the color leather on them.  One quick call to Graham with an “I trust you; do what you want” response and they were mine.

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I love them, Graham loves them and Josie just has a grand old time climbing up on them.  Win, win, win.

If you’re wondering what the chandelier is poking through the top of the photos, that is the Stray Dog Designs chandelier that was a display (ready 75% off) at an Anthropologie store.

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It actually will be going in our breakfast nook once we get around to making my breakfast nook dream come true.  You can read my dream plans here. One day, I’ll put a more formal chandelier in the dining room.  There will also be drapes. And a rug, of course.  But, it all takes time and budget so for now this is where we’re at and I’m happy with it.

Step by step, the home is becoming more us.  I have to admit that I’ve got this overwhelming feeling of home ownership pride due to that weekend DIY project.

November 17, 2014 at 5:27 AM 6 comments

Thick as Thieves

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For 48 hours, Graham, my extended family and I were whisked away to the land of enchantment.  For a fleeting moment, I was free.  Free of spit up, tantrums, pointing out colors, changing diapers, keeping a food schedule and finding pacifies in the sketchiest depths of our home.

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We let loose.  Let the joy of two heartfelt, positive, energetic people, completely lost in love, take over.  It was, and is, a contagious love my cousin and his bride exude.

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I am part of a tribe that is almost always in rare form.  We travel the world to support each other.  We let the good times roll with hoot and hollers and you better believe we can get down to the rhythm of a mariachi band.

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While it’s easy to be there in the thick, we’re there in the thin, sometimes with a misguided joke or unsolicited advice.  However, despite any flubs, we all try our hardest because we’re family.

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As I return to the ever reliable alarm clock of a hungry crying baby and a protesting toddler, I think to myself may I instill in my girls what was instilled in me: we are thick as thieves in this family and you love with reckless abandon.

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November 14, 2014 at 5:00 AM 10 comments

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