Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Are you a fan...

Of the Caftan???

AKA, the Kaftan???

They seem to be all the rage right now as we gear up for music festivals and summertime. Trina has a fabulous one, Calypso has a few, and ShopBop has a several options (all that leave me slightly speechless over the pricetags)! Personally, I don't see how you could go wrong with a short caftan in a hippie chic kind of way, but is it really an investment? Hmm.. Pair with a cute fedora, jean shorts or throw one on over your swimming suit and with very little effort, you're good to go.  I get it. However, if I went with the Trina Turk one that I totally love, I'd have zero pennies left to get TO the beach or any kind of festival!
Fret not, friends. I recently found a great source for this trend if you want to get on board. Enter World Market (wait, what?!)! For less than $30, you can get a Kaftan and then take the money you saved to put towards that concert ticket, a new pair of sunnies, or an adorable crossbody clutch.  
Now, point me in the direction of the beach!

You're welcome : )


Monday, April 8, 2013

Patio Dreaming

With spring constantly teasing us (it was 85 degrees yesterday, but tomorrow we might get snow!) we spent the better part of yesterday researching and scoping out patio sets. I think we found a winner and I've been playing around with accessorizing. Hopefully in the next few weeks my patio dream will come to fruition and we'll be sippin on some chiltons and grilling with our friends! If only the ocean in the background was included-life would be complete! 

What do you think? Have you done much patio sprucing for this spring?

Thursday, April 4, 2013

First Quarter Recap

As you may recall, I put out some lofty, lofty goals for 2013! (Don't worry about the link, they're all below.) Well, despite the snow, we're now into SPRING (and the second quarter of the year!), so I thought I may update y'all on my progress. Here's where I currently stand:

-5 camelbacks of water per day I usually drink 2-3, sometimes more, sometimes less.
-Lose 10-15 lbs. However, if it's not that much, it had better be because of muscle!! (Generally, I'm OK with my pant size, but I would like to become leaner and more tone. Time to lose the chub) I've been more active lately, but not as regular as I should be about working out. I'm probably down 4-6 lbs. since the holidays, though! At this point, I just want to feel good in my swimmies.
-Find a gym here and work with a trainer to acheive those lofty goals above or to just get started again. I started before the big move and I was doing great, but haven't stuck with any real routine since then See above, however, I found a gym and I found a pilates studio! I LOVE pilates, but it's definitely $$$ so I'm trying to figure out my budget on working both into my life!
-Change my hair- figure out something different, but still longish I got a 5 inch cut! It's still long!
-Stick to a skincare routine and get the occasional facial (and not feel guilty about it) Check! I'm loving Boots No. 7. No facial, yet.
-Manicure-once a month, and if need be- learn to do on self I've gotten 1 this year so far :/
-Start each day with a devotional & journal Most week days, I do alright with the reading aspect. I haven't been journaling.
-Read one book a month- this month- Blog Inc. I finished it, and I skipped a book in Feb/March, but thanks to Blissdom I have Start by Jon Acuff and Unmarketing by Scott Stratten to work on catching up! I get bored with books.
-Wake up early (Finley helps with that!) My early is probably not your early... Does 7:30/8 count? (Don't answer that.)
-Volunteer with something twice a month -(or join Junior League?) I'm on the Susan G Komen Race Committee! Komen Koach. So excited!
-Swear less (I curse like a sailor around friends, in case you didn't know. Classy.) I think I'm improving!
-For anything negative said about anyone (hello, I am human) say 3 positives. Keep my mouth shut if I can't think of 3 positives. I've kept my mouth shut several times. I have found myself to listen a little more, and not quite dive into making remarks or comments because I now witness it more around me and I'd rather just build people up. If I detest something/someone, I prefer to just ignore it. I'm not saying I'm perfect, though. 
-Make creativity a priority (see more below) It helps to designate time in your schedule for this! First thing in the morning, or blocking out time with no distractions to blog/design- it's a work in progress for me, but I am trying!
-Become a better friend to those who mean alot to me so far away- send cards, birthday gifts, or surprises because being far away sucks We are slightly consumed with sending wedding gifts, but I've gotten a few surprises for some special people, too! Purchased, not mailed. YET! UGH!
-Fresh start with new people here- make wonderful first impressions and show appreciation more often This is hard for someone who can be self-conscience, like me. I'm working on coming out of my shell some. Getting thrown into a blogger conference and a new town and decorating  jobs sure has helped!  We've made a handful of friends, too :)
-Be early Ha. Well...I've made it to appointments/work/etc on time...not so much early!
-Let go of dissapointments in others /be more understanding of people All about open communication for the greater good here! Or just moving onward. 
-Expect less so maybe I can be surprised more ehh...I tend to place a high expectation on my husband. I don't know if I've been surprised as much as I may expect to be, though. No fault on him. I just think communication may be missing component here. However, the other day I caught him looking into Nespresso machines and it pretty much made my day :) (regardless of if we're going to actually get one or not, it's the little things!) 
image: Nancy Ray
-Decorate Master bedroom (in almost 2 years of marriage this always gets stuck on the backburner and I want a pretty little room that we can just call ours) Getting done! Bedding is here, pillows are ordered, and walls will get painted in the next couple of weeks. What a feeling!
-Create a functional office/guest room-complete with craft organization and an inspiration board! I did my inspiration board, but my office is a total scene from hoarders at the moment. Lots of boxes/accessories are overtaking the space because I had to order things for my clients! Ah, the life of a decorator!
-Attempt wallpaper for the first time-bathroom! Eventually?
-Paint wood floors (also in the bathroom) Eventually?
-Give some love to our gorgeous back yard-needed: lawn mower, new grill, patio furniture, and firepit Time is money, friends. This is a savings task and may get partially done by this summer?
-Also- figure out how to maintain our pretty manicured lawn-what kinds of plants we have, etc I found out who our previous homeowner's lanscaper information. We just need to make the call!
-Organize drawers and paper trails. Make a system stick. Organized a few times, but it's not sticking.
-Implement 15 minutes of cleaning/day (not including the dishes-which we do after dinner) Check!
-Buy some plants for inside and some topiary!! for our porch Inside plants are still alive!!!!! We've done nothing for our porch, yet.
-Continue to make the bed each day Most days this makes me so happy to get done. New bedding is too nice not to make up the bed!

-Find a church we both love Check, however, we're going visit one more. 
-Get plugged in-join a small group or a ministry and participate weekly We are going to the Wednesday evening thing next week. Tried to go this week, but our taxes meeting put us behind schedule.
-Discuss more with Husband, pray more together This is a Work In Progress...
-Really apply lessons learned to actual life. Every day. Make sense of it all, if it's even possible WIP
-Continue to pray lots daily, but aim to dig a little deeper WIP 
-Read the Gospels Haven't started.
-Listen to an additional sermon on Sundays (which we often do, since we haven't joined a church) Happens sometimes.
-Acts of kindness-2-3/month We've been OK about this, but could be better about planning it out and implementing as a couple. 

-Spend more 'downtime' focused on talents and figuring these things out, rather than watching tv Check! I haven't watched Kelly & Michael in weeks (ha!)
-Revamp blog-complete with weekly ideas, maybe some tutorials, organization of posts, and more features. Be better at posting updates so they aren't so stinking long! Blog Goal :4 times / week Let's go with 3x a week. I haven't organized a ton, but I'm on a better track now with posting. 
-Find a new blog design, fonts, etc. so I'm actually excited about my blog WIP.
-Figure out how to make pretty "boards" I ordered Adobe Photoshop Elements! So we'll see...
-Paint- I'm decent at painting, so I need to practice more and get back into creating art I haven't done much of this :( I bought supplies, though.
-Photograph- Put down the iphone and pick up a camera. I obviously love taking pictures, but I used to be more into actual photography. Learn more, potentially upgrade my old Nikon to a Canon. Negative. The iPhone5 Camera is AWESOME, but not a replacement. I know.
-Find locals who have jobs that I'm interested in and intern or learn from them. This includes: Interior designers, event designers, floral designers, and creatives who work with magazines or art. Also-starting with where I work now-the boutique-learn more about how that works behind the scenes. Started! I've linked up with an interior designer who owns a custom drapery/upholstery company and I'm learning so much with her already. I'm also becoming a little more understanding of the boutique. I also met amazing women at Blissdom who are going to be so helpful. I'm just being open to opportunities!
-Assist in a wedding inspiration photoshoot for the local magazine and implement!! This sort of fell through! However, my dog got photographed and it was so fun to help with that!
-Etsy shop? Not a priority until I paint!
-Network through blogs and through my new community--make 5 connections/month I think Blissdom helped to propel this! I think if we said 5 x 12=60, I met that many people already! Granted, I will hopefully dive a little deeper into more meaningful connections that I've made and hope to learn and be inspired by them! 
-Create blog and help with online shop for JBS Linens Negative, not a priority yet.
-Potentially attend High Point Market in April? Not happening! Visiting family, friends, and not adding an additional trip into an already exciting, hectic week!
-Learn more in the realm of online marketing Blissdom certainly helped here! 

-revamp our dieting choices We aim to stick with a paleo/gluten free diet on the week days as much as we can. We are cooking much more often and we're making healthy choices when dining out, but sometimes we do splurge more than I may like.
-Whole30 Challenge? yeah. tried. didn't work!
-shop local produce We try to shop at Eat Right, which is a local organic shop who does the local sourcing for us!
-be more intentional each week for meals-we have slacked SO much lately Back to a better track, thankfully.
-eat breakfast hit or miss. We do love sit down Saturday, when we don't have to do the cookin. Ha.
-gym (previously discussed) 
-get more outdoorsy- Hike more at the Palo Duro, find walking trails on vacation, picnic, pick fruit or something, spend time at a friend's ranch We found a winery with a patio that overlooks the canyon...that counts as being outdoorsy, right?
-take Finley for a 30 minute walk each day Thanks to the weather here, this happens some. Not as much as it will later this Spring when it warms up!
-purchase a bike to ride with Steven (nothing crazy-just a hybrid neighborhood bike) my birthday is in May, Steven ;)
-buy new tennis shoes Need!
-attempt a class and stick with going- yoga, barre, or pilates (whatever they may have here-options slightly limited) I LOVE pilates! It's just so $$$
-find healthy snacks that I like Check- Cashews, cucumbers, carrots, fruit..and Gluten Free Sweet Potato chips are my favesies with Guac!
-make kale chips GROSS. Hated 'em.
-take vitamins hit or miss.
-Find a doctor, dentist, and dermatologist in town and make appointments (ugh) Still need to do most of thse.
-rest well (I love sleep!)  Finley wakes up ALOT and my husband snores ALOT so...most nights, I'm a little restless.

-See more movies Attempting to! My fave was Les Mis!!! And I really liked Silver Linings Playbook!
-Implement game nights FRIENDS IN THE RILLO- CALL US IF you are in!
-Restaurant "club"-once a month scout out local places to eat and dine with friends's not exactly official, but we tend to dine out with different friends here and there!
-Supper Club-host dinner for the group and create a themed dinner party! Hasn't happened
-Plan ski trip with new friends! SO MUCH FUN!
-Save money for a spa afternoon in Santa Fe on said ski trip SO WORTH IT!
-Horseback riding through the canyon We will once it warms up!
-Host 5th annual Chili Cookoff November :)
-Go to the fair I think it's in Oct?
-Celebrate 2nd Anniversary!-do something very thoughtful (not last minute) for husband. Next week. I better get to it!
-Vacation in San Fran & Sonoma in October
-Host family in Texas (inlaws and my own) All planned for the summer
-Explore Texas Austin in far :)
-Date nights at the theater: West Side Story, Spamalot, and ELVIS LIVES!! (Husband's Christmas gift from me!)
-Attend a couple of concerts, even if it means to travel 
-Skype often with NC friends not as much as I'd like
-Attend a rodeo
-Find a lake to enjoy
-See a real longhorn
-Create Spotify playlists (not just 'subscribe' to a few)
-Attend a cooking class
-Go out dancing
-Enjoy a boatride (oh, how this was taken for granted in NC!)
-Meet Giuliana Rancic at a speaking engagement!!! eee! April 18!

-Start saving for an SUV(research and figure out what we want!) and figure out when we can buy one with cash We are saving! Doesn't help my car needs a few things it worth it?!
-Shop smarter for clothing-make a list of wants/needs because I'm constantly updating my wardrobe. The older I get, the nicer things I prefer, so I'd like to save and purchase quality over quantity (ahem: 2nd year in a row I've had "budget friendly" boots to break because they were not so great...time for some Frye Boots?) Been on point with this. I've hardly done any clothing shopping since January and I'm feeling great about it. I would like a new bathing suit, new pair of jeans, and a few basic staple updates! 
-Be more on board with monthly budget. Pretty good with following along, but I'm real great at not being involved Ongoing conversation in our house. It's going well.
-Upgrade to the iPhone5 LURVE!
-Get computer fixed (computer and phone both moving at a snail's pace and I just need to outsource because I fail everytime I try to figure it out myself) SO annoying!! DONE!
-Switch licence/bills/accounts all over to Texas  DONE! (I think?!) Maybe not insurence, yet.. 
-Be a better giver-make a goal for later this year and achieve it We are still deciding what/how we'd like to do this.
-Once joining a church, begin tithing again We leave pretty good offerings each time we go, but haven't joined.
-Create savings for pet & flights back to NC Always a WIP, but we've booked a few upcoming travel plans for NC and Austin!
-Register Finley with AKC! Poor guy just got fixed this week, so we finally have his microchip info now and we just need to file the paperwork!
-Attend a marriage conference or something along those likes with Steven On the lookout for one!

All in all, I think I've made pretty great progress on my goals! The top two things I want/need to be better about would be the gym and painting. Diving into the spiritual aspect of faith and God is not something that will happen over night, but we're a little more in tune with it. Of course decorating and potentially starting a business adds a whole new level of goals/needs, but I'm taking things a day at a time. April will be a FABULOUS month, full of hard work, celebrating our 2nd anniversary, and visiting NC for two weddings. I get to see my family and my best friends! I couldn't be more thrilled! I hope it's warm there because it snowed again today. In APRIL!
Now, excuse me while I do a little happy dance because thought I was setting myself up for failure....!

And bless your heart if you made it through that epic post. I promise my future updates will be less in depth. Have you been sticking with your new year resolutions? 

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Parisian Playroom

So far, my first design project is going along just wonderfully. The paint color turned out perfectly (whew!!!), the rug is just darling, the window treatments will be ready soon, and the rest of the pieces are coming together! I'll probably be able to reveal actual photos in a week or two, but here's the design I planned! 

Using a few components that my client already had purchased, we based the theme off of the Frenchy bedding. This is just a rough mock-up, but you can see how this room will flow. How cute is that artwork and the life size Eiffel Tower (for hanging dress up clothing?), though? I think little Liv is going to be so excited!


*out of respect for my client, I'm unable to share my sources. Please email me directly if you have any questions or design needs yourself!