Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Very clever...

Seriously, some people are just so darn this great pendant lamp made out of wax paper.

Found here

I would never think of that. And if I did Mr. W would surely think I was crazy. But I love it.

[Very belated] birthday gift...

My brother-in-law turned the big October.

For his birthday, I made him frosted beer glasses with Longhorns on them. [He is a huge Texas Longhorns fan.] Anyways, I am just posting this now, because I am huge slacker and just gave them to him at Christmas...I obviously was nowhere near meeting my October goal of getting his gift to him by his birthday. Oops. But in my defense, I completely forgot that I would need to mail his gift...and then got scared that the glasses would break in the mail. So, I decided to take them when we went to Dallas for Thanksgiving...but I forgot that too. 
Okay, back to the very late gift. I came up with the idea when I was looking for ideas for reusing vases from our wedding and came across the incredible frosted glass ideas from Centsational Girl. The glasses were really easy and fun to make. I have plans to frost about eight million items around our house, so watch for that. And when I do, I will try really hard to take a better picture. I am notorious for my awful pictures, but this one was a new low. I tried to edit it at a little so you could tell there was a Longhorn, but it didn't really work out too well for me. So, I figured I'd just slap the 1960s effect on there and call it good. :)

While I'm sharing brother-in-law birthday presents, here was the gift I made him last year...
I forgot to take pictures of the ribbons to hang it - but there is a football, basketball, and orange ribbon, so that it can be switched for the different seasons. They have it hanging in their kitchen and I must say, it looks pretty darn cool. :)

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Bench inspiration...

My ugly bench transformation project is off to a shaky start...

My husband and I went to pick it up this evening and nobody answered the door. We could see the man on the couch through the door's window [not in a creep stalkerish way, just in a he's-obviously-right-there way]. So, we waited. And waited. And waited. But no luck. Mr. W was afraid to wake him up because he "he looked mean." I was afraid that he was dead. Luckily, the man just had a headache and was sleeping. And the bench will be ours tomorrow.

Until then, here are some beautiful bench makeovers from around the blogosphere:

Monday, December 28, 2009

I bought something ugly...

Seriously, it is really ugly.

But I have big dreams of it being beautiful someday.

Sorry to the Craigslist sellers if you happen to be reading this. But, hey, you are selling it, so you must understand that it's more than a little ugly. My husband and I are going to pick it up tomorrow evening and then I will figure out my plan of action for making it beautiful. And once beautiful, it will adorn the foot of our bed [and you will see a picture, of course].

Happy [early] New Year!

I seem to always be late on my holiday posts, so I thought I would go ahead and be a few days early on this one. I'm not big on New Year's resolutions, but this year I came up with a list of people who I would like to learn from in 2010...

1. Martha Stewart - I want to do more cooking, baking, cleaning, crafting, organizing, entertaining, and all around amazing "homekeeping" - all in my effort to become a little more like Martha. :)

2. Katie Bower and Sherry Petersik - In 2010, I plan to take on more DIY projects around the house. And of course, blog about them - Katie and Sherry style. Who knows? Maybe I'll even make some bloggy friends next year.

3. Stacy London - I love What Not to Wear, but I'm gonna have to kick my wardrobe into gear so that I don't end up on it. :) Okay, it's not actually that bad. But I probably don't need to immediately put on sweats everyday after work either. And some of the sweatshirts in my closet (i.e., the two almost identical high school baseball hoodies) can probably find a new home this coming least in a different closet.

4. Donald Trump - So, I needed someone to represent working hard at work...and the Donald is a businessman [obviously]. I know he throws off my all female thing I had going on, but I do love The Apprentice and I can't think of anyone else at the moment. :)

5. Jillian Michaels - No list of New Year's resolutions is complete without the cliche fitness goal. So with the help of my adorable little cheerleaders, my husband's new boxing stand and bag, and my new Wii fit - I plan to be more active this next year and get in at least a little better shape.

6. My Grandmas - Growing up I was lucky to have two of the most amazing grandmothers ever imaginable, so this one incorporates a lot of different things. One of which is to get back into some "old school crafts", like crocheting, knitting, cross-stitching, embroidering, etc. But the most imporant thing I ever learned from my grandmas and most hope to do in 2010 [and every year] is put God, my husband, and my family first at all times.

Happy New Year! I wish you all a wonderful 2010!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Merry [belated] Christmas!

I hope you all had an absolutely wonderful Christmas with your family and friends. I know we did. We were lucky that despite the weather we were able to celebrate with both my family and my husband's. We are so thankful for the time with our families, wonderful memories, incredible gifts, and most of all, the "reason for the season."

I know this is delayed, but since I was late in putting up any Christmas decorations this year, they will be staying for a while and I might as well share a little. :)  So, here is our table decorated for the holidays...

I love to keep our table set all the time [mostly because it keeps us from piling mail and other junk all over it], so I like to keep it fairly simple. The "table runner" is actually a red scarf my grandma gave me for a Christmas a few years ago...a very Katie Bower-ish table decorating idea.

By the way, I am so not the only person with holiday posts after the holidays. Check out all sorts of fun post-holiday posts here...

Office storage boxes...

I love these destination storage boxes from ZGallerie [found here]. They are a little out of my price range, so I will be on the hunt for a comparable set. I am fairly certain I have seen similar boxes at Hobby Lobby...

They would be perfect with the giant wall map we bought for our office. [Photos coming soon, hopefully.]

Monday, December 21, 2009

Cork magnets...

I love these cork magnets found here. They would make a great hostess gift and at $4.95 for the four-pack, they are very reasonable...but I might make my own using the pile of corks I have been keeping. :)

More DIY ornaments...

I can't get enough of all the beautiful DIY ornaments - like these from Centsational Girl. We will certainly be seeing a lot of these ideas on our tree next year...

I love these glittered cookie cutter ornaments. Making sugar cookies with my mom and sister has always been one of my favorite Christmas traditions, so these ornaments would be both beautiful and memorable.

And these are another gorgeous use of glass ornaments. They are painted from the inside out...very clever.

Check out the whole post at Centsational Girl to see the rest of her ornaments and the 117 entries into her DIY Ornament Party.

Friday, December 18, 2009

DIY ornaments...

One of my favorite things about Christmas is pulling out all the ornaments for the Christmas tree. I love personalized ornaments, so this one is perfect...

This ornament from Wedding Bee [found via Dollar Store Crafts] is made from leftover wedding invitations. Beautiful.

For more personalized ornaments, check out Bower Power for four great DIY ideas.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Yay for Young House Love!

The blog Young House Love absolutely rocks my world. Hands down one of my very favorite, must read blogs. They were just named as No.12 on the list of the Top 50 World's Best Design Blogs by The London Times. Yay!

There are obviously 49 other awesome blogs that made that list too, so congrats to all them as well! But I had to give a special "yay!" to Young House Love because I seriously adore them. [And it's my secret dream to be best friends with John and Sherry. :)] 

In other amazing news...with this Top 50 list, there is no excuse for anyone to ever run out of amazing blogs to read. 

Eddie Ross is my hero...

It's true - I am more than a little obsessed with Eddie Ross and pretty much everything he does. He is incredible.

Case in point, the "Eddie Ross ornament wreath." Seriously, 99.99% of all humans have made one of these now. [I, unfortunately am in the 0.01% who have not yet made one. But don't you worry, I will most certainly be buying clearance ornaments after Christmas to make one for next year. :)]

Now, I just saw his beautiful spray-painted lace wrapping paper. While totally amazing, this will not be happening in our house this year. We will be doing good to even have all our presents bought and wrapped by Christmas. [I just put our Christmas tree up last night, if that tells you how behind we are. But don't judge me - I have full intentions of making up for this Scroogeness next year.]

Back to the point - The spray-painted lace wrapping paper is gorgeous; however, until an extra four hours or so is added to the day, I will stick to using Eddie's suggestion regarding the wrapping paper scraps - to use them to cover vases and candles. Why haven't I ever thought of that!? Oh yeah, because I am nowhere near as amazing as Eddie Ross. But from now on, I will be decking out all sorts of vases and candles Eddie style.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Something not from a hotel...

I have another memory check for you...remember how I have bazillions of vases from our wedding? And I have a bazillion ideas for reusing them?

If you need a refresher, you can check it out here.

[But as a side note - I have just decided that my delayed posting is actually just me caring about your mental health. Trying to remember things for an extended period of time is supposed to help improve your memory.]

Anyways, back to the point. One of my ideas was to make twine-covered vases, like this one, except different. A while back in one of my brief moments at home, not a hotel, I made these three vases and filled them with twigs from our yard.

See, I actually do have a home. And even a yard.

I was getting ready to post something completely different...but it related to a hotel, so I had to wait to make sure you don't think that all I do is hang out in hotels. It's getting out of hand - all of my posts mention hotels and the hotel employees [at a very busy hotel] are starting to make jokes about how much I am here. I feel much better now that I have proof of life outside a hotel. Whew!

[Another random side note...has anyone else noticed that with the changes to blogger, the font sizes aren't the same as before. Eek. It's driving me bonkers!]

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A little "contest"...

About four hundred years ago I mentioned a little contest. Well, the time you have all been waiting for has finally come. It's very simple - I give you a little puzzle of sorts, you solve it, you win a fabulous prize.

Here's the puzzle...

My current hotel has the incredible mirror in every room. It is about eight feel tall.

And is a beautiful silvery color that would be perfect for our master bedroom. I love it. And must own one.

That's where you come in - all you have to do is figure out where I can get one just like it and then you win the fabulous prize. :)

Here's the fabulous prize...

The pleasure of being my new BFF. Seriously, besties forever. And ever. Even if you are crazed lunatic. It would still be worth it.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Thanks for the award!

Wow! While I was temporarily missing from the blogging world, I received my very first blog award! I was absolutely shocked when I logged into my blog for the first time in a month and saw the sweet comment from Kifus from Inspiring Interiors. I honestly read the comment and her post about 82 times before I actually believed it. (Especially considering my blogger slacking lately!) I was having a pretty crummy day, but you better believe that's not the case anymore. :) So, here is a giant THANK YOU to Kifus for the award and totally making my day!

A few simple rules apply to the recipients of the "From me to you" Flower Award...
1) Thank the person who gave you the award
2) Copy the award
3) Post it in your blog
4) Tell us seven things that your readers don't know
5) Link seven new bloggers as recipients
6) Notify winners of award with comment on their blog
7) Keep being awesome
Here are seven thing you don't know about me...
1) I am completely obsessed with Argo Tea and may go into withdrawals when I leave Chicago
2) While I am in Chicago, I am having withdrawals from visiting Hobby Lobby
3) I want to get my hair cut like Selena Gomez
4) Generally, the only music I listen to online is 94.5 Country...from Topeka, Kan.
5) I make to-do lists like crazy
6) I haven't put up my Christmas tree yet :(
7) I will likely be spending waaayyy too much time in St. Louis over the next year

Here are the seven bloggers I have chosen for this award:
4) Stem

You may be wondering...

Black stapler beside large group of staples in shape of question mark

Where, oh, where have I been?!?
I am a total blogging slacker and this is my first post in a month. Oops! To get back in the swing of things, here's a rundown of the past month in 50 words:
Four cold weeks in Chicago...a wonderful weekend with Mom...a great game night birthday celebration...waaaayyy too much work...relaxing reading...creative crafting...a beautiful bridal shower for a soon-to-be beautiful bride...catching up with coworkers...a terrific Thanksgiving trip to Black Friday shopping...and much more! :)

Monday, November 9, 2009

My newest home...

Welcome to a brief tour of my new home. Well, my weekday home for the next few months while in Chicago for work. :)

I've always loved the look of a nice chaise and this is only adding to that love.

You can't see much of the bedding in this photo, but take my word for it - it is very nice. And the fluffy little square pillow makes me smile. :)
Again, you can't see it very well here, but the bathroom has shutters that open up into the bedroom area. And the bathroom has a beautiful black tiled shower. Looove it.
The best part by far though, is being greeted by my very own giant sparkly monogram every time I pull up. :)
[These pictures are all from the hotel's website, but I will be taking my own picture sometime this week for a little contest...]

Mood Board Monday - Chic Monkey Nursery...

I am participating in my second Mood Board Monday today. [Check out my first one here.] Today's party is hosted by Comfort & Luxury and has some amazing mood boards linked. To participate you just had to pick between two beautiful Anthropologie chairs and go from there.
For some reason when I think of really cool chairs I always think about nurseries. [And I swear, I don't even have babies on the brain!] I just think nurseries should always have an incredible chair. Given, generally the chairs are rockers, but just go with me on this one anyways... :)

I chose the Bertram chair because I loved all the colors mixed throughout it. Mommy can snuggle up with her new baby boy and a soft throw from Anthropologie in the beautiful chair and kick up her feet on this fabulous burnt orange ottoman by Williams Sonoma. It is the perfect corner for reading books with a soft yellow rug, white floor lamp and white sleigh side table all from Pottery Barn Kids.
When it's bedtime for baby, he is put to sleep in the combo crib and changer with the mod monkey bedding set from Babies R Us. The coordinating hamper helps keep the room tidy. And to help with organization, the room is filled with a six-drawer dresser and storage unit, both from Ikea. The green and orange Ikea storage boxes hold both necessities and toys, including the adorable memory game.
The room also includes green dot panel curtains from Pottery Barn Kids, the orange tulip pendant and alphabet hooks from Anthropologie and, of course, a plush monkey from Babies R Us.
Thanks for checking out my amateur little mood board. And for some truly incredible boards, be sure to check out the rest of the mood board party! :)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

100 posts and 100 dollars...

Wow - I can't believe this is already my 100th post! I never imagined myself having a blog, but I love it! Thanks for reading and commenting. I am looking forward to the next 100 posts and continuing with the bloggy fun! :)

Blah, blah, blah...what was that about $100?!?
Wouldn't it be awesome if I said I was giving away $100 to celebrate my 100th post?!
Yep, sure would. Especially since both of you reading would have a 50% chance of winning. ;)
Unfortunately, no such luck...but I did make up a fun little game called "What Could You Buy With 100 Pretend Dollars?" [If you say it in your best Chuck Woolery game show announcing voice, it sounds a little more exciting!]
The "rules" of the game are simple:
1) Pick a store.
2) Check out the sale section.
3) Pick at least 10 different items to buy with your pretend $100.
4) Be in awe of how much cool stuff you could buy for $100. :)

What could you buy with 100 pretend dollars at Bed Bath & Beyond?
- 6 sage napkin rings for $0.99 each
- 1 recycled cotton apron for $7.99
- 2 glass candle holders for $3.24 each
- a 12-piece mix & match placemat and napkin set for $9.99
- set of 6 present placecard holders for $3.74
- 4 turquoise glass napkin rings for $0.99 each
- set of 6 glass photo coasters for $9.99
- set of 2 recycling bags for $4.99
- set of 4 glasses that are no longer available [they were $7.49 earlier today though...]
- a triangle chip and dip platter for $14.99
- 4 square bamboo placemats for $1.99 each
- a cheese and cracker set for $7.49
- set of 6 square bamboo napkin rings for $4.99
- and an accent rug for $3.99
...for a grand total of $99.99! [Oh yeah, taxes don't exist in this game.]
What could you buy with 100 pretend dollars at Brylane Home?
- 3-piece bag set for $5.99
- 6-piece baking set for $6.19
- 3-piece toile bag set for $4.99
- 2 faux silk curtain panels for $6.49 each
- 8-piece carafe and tumbler set for $7.49
- a classic oval braided rug for $7.99
- a three-tier glass tray for $12.99
- 4-piece pumpkin bowl set for $10.99
- and a mirror with a shelf for $17.99
...for a grand total of $97.58!

Monday, October 19, 2009

My favorite hotel...

Normally when I travel for work I have all sorts of posts because I get bored. But instead, today I am posting because I have to share some incredible pictures from one of my very favorite hotels. It's easy to love for so many reasons - it's about as close as you can get to our office, there's a Starbucks in the lobby, and it has views like this...
And this...
For those of you who aren't obsessive baseball fans, that's the new Busch Stadium. I honestly have had one of these two views every single time I've stayed here. Amazing.
[As a side note, when my husband and I stayed here to go to the game a few weekends ago, the hotel had giant glass pitchers of lemonade and fruit punch - Cardinals' colors - in the lobby for while you waited to check in. They just keep movin' up on the favorites list.]

And besides the huge wall of windows in the rooms with the incredible views, the rest of the room is also great. Like this great headboard, simple but stylish lamps and cool artwork arrangements...
The bathrooms are small, but also very nice. My favorite part is that each one has a huge framed mirror. [I'm having an obsession with framed mirrors lately and trying to figure out the easiest DIY way to frame ours...] Oh, and there's a big floor-length mirror in each room [another thing I'm kind of obsessing about lately].
And there are tons of lounge areas just begging people to sit for a drink and great conversations. The details make it perfect - like the tray the wine glasses are on.
And, again it is the world's best hotel for a baseball lover. Pretty sure we must have awesome art like this in our house someday...
So, there it is - a quick tour of one of my favorite hotels. All the photos are from the hotel's website, and it was seriously hard to narrow it down to just these. Have I mentioned I love it? And I almost forgot to even mention the huge pool and fitness room!
Okay, I'm done. I just couldn't help but share the fun decor and amazingness. If you aren't tired of people rambling on about hotels, you should definitely check out hotel inspiration video one and two by Young House Love and All Bower Power.

Soft and pretty pink...

To continue posting pink in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, here are some beautiful pale pink rooms courtesy of Martha...

I love the use of pink and gray in this bedroom.

This room has the same lovely color combination and the shape of the side table is incredible!

The palest of pinks makes this room look so calming.
I'm always a sucker for a cool headboard like this one.
I always love the pink KitchenAid and it makes this kitchen look so sweet. And to Cook for the Cure, KitchenAid makes a donation to Susan G. Komen for the Cure for every pink product purchased. :)