Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Interwebz Wants

For some reason, I make split second decisions in actual stores, but when things are online I hem and haw for ages before I buy... and by then it's sold out. The internet sites are usually cheaper too! I am definitely a crazy person but I think it's the return shipping that scares me.

For example, I lusted after some cloth napkins that World Market sold online for months to use to make pillow covers... and they're now discontinued in the color I want. Sigh.

Anyhow, maybe by listing things  I am eyeing up on here, I'll get a kick in the butt to buy them if I truly want them so bad.

Following along with the World Market napkins, I've been eyeing these new ones they have:

I recently re-remembered Urban Outfitters and want these:

This would go in the library nook we're planning :)

I need to make space for my jewelry, I have no where to put it!

I have NO clue where this would go, and Rob would probably HATE it. But it's just so cheerful!! Maybe the guest room.

Anyways, those are the highlights and the most wanted right now. Too bad I just spent $35 on a turned leg dresser that I found today at Restore!! More details tomorrow, I'm desperate for something to take my mind off all this waiting you all!! ;)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Short Sale Lows and Lowes

Well, we were supposed to close tomorrow (Wednesday). I didn't say anything on here as I was sure that would jinx it. But it still was jinxed and pushed back! Our lender is useless and still isn't ready. Maybe next week he says.

I really had my hopes up this time too. I'm just feeling so depressed and down about it. We put in our offer back on the 20th of May... and on the 31st of August we still don't have the keys. That's more than 3 months! The average time for a short sale is 3 months, so we're still in the 'normal' range but good golly miss molly!!! It's been long enough!

I WANT TO PAINT! And rip up floors and decorate and put our stuff in. I am not normally known for any inch of patience and I am tantrum imminent!

It's 99.9% ours, the paperwork is all done (well not our lender's obviously), so I know it WILL be ours, but it's still an emotional rollercoaster! :( When this is all done I plan on writing a post all about short sales... as a heads up and a warning for those naively going into it as we did, hopefully it will enlighten people. We sure could have used some enlightenment back in May.

Enough depressing stuff though. I bought myself some clearanced items at work today to cheer me up after hearing the news about the failed closing date. They're totally random but they were cheap and the local stores have been failing me!

First I got this lantern for the low low price of $2.99

It is massive. I can't figure out how to put it together yet, but the ones in store are HUGE! It's originally around $45 and they're now on sale for $6.50 and then an additional 50% off. My math is a bit off obviously, but I can't be bothered to go check my receipt! :) 

The door frame kind of gives it some perspective on size, it's as tall as the box is, not the picture on the box ;)

Anyways, don't know where I'll use it, but I figured it could at least sit somewhere with a candle in it looking pretty (if only the house had a mantle!). Or outside if it looks dumb. 

I also picked up this:

Please ignore the laundry hamper and my shoes reflected in it! I was desperate!

We got it for half off the yellow sticker price so $11.99, originally $47.99. It's a good size as you can see compared to the couch, it's 26 inches by 33 if you count the frame. It's solid wood too... or a thick veneer. Either way, it's got a nice walnut-y wood tone. I'm not sure if I'll leave it that way yet. 

Honestly, I have a few ideas of what to do with it but nothing definite.

I've been craving to replace some of the ginormous mirrors in the bathrooms, Rob isn't 100% on the idea yet though so it might not happen. But I'm wanting to replace them with a smaller, framed mirror so that I can put lights on either side of the mirror and make the bathroom a bit more classy and less hollywood-bright lights.

Unclassy... and just plain ugly mirror. Whats with the mirrored frame bits?!

And change it to something like this:

Or this one with a wood tone!

... minus the pedestal sinks. But again, Rob isn't so keen on that idea. It may just end up in a gallery wall!

Also, just for giggles, here is a picture of the mirror that I snapped earlier this evening while it was still light out. 
Are you dizzy yet?

 I didn't realize the camera was focusing on the mirror and not the frame!! I am so unskilled. I had to take the crappy basement light picture instead. Boo. Although it is a nice picture of my Nana's trees.

Anyone else hate short sales? Ever buy stuff because it's dirt cheap? Anyone know how to wire lights around a mirror? Ha. Rob is being negative about that aspect. Have a good hump day tomorrow!

Monday, August 29, 2011

A Small Shopping Score (Alliteration woo!)

I've been online shopping (discovered Urban Outfitters!). I suddenly realized I had money this weekend and decided to see whats out there now in stores and on the internet.

I went to our local Homegoods first. I didn't find much, I was actually a little disappointed... everything was so dark and heavy looking. The pillows were all in rusty reds, oranges, and dark greens and in heavy materials like velvet and corduroy. It was like stepping back into the 90s. I assume its just because they got their big fall shipment in but blegh!! I hope they lighten up.

Why is that when you have money to spend, you can't ever find anything cute... but when you're broke everything looks good??

Anyhow, I ended up with this shower curtain for our upstairs 'master' bath for $15:

It's not amazing, but the fabric felt like it was good quality and it's overly long so I can hang 'em high. Plus I really liked the robins egg blue color and birds :)

I've seen that pattern of fabric around, Target sells a pair of slipper chairs in the tangerine hue of it. Apparently it's made by Thomas Paul... I had to research that, ha. Apparently it's also REALLY expensive to buy by the yard as well. Calico Corners was sold out of all of theirs on line though so I couldn't get an exact price on this pattern.

Mine is the teal one, obviously :)

It's a nice, large scale print, and it won't impact the master bathroom paint colors too much (since I haven't decided on them yet). Robins egg can go with plenty of our possible colors.

Researching that led me to his other prints, like this selection here:

I love all of those! Especially the one on the right. 

Mmmm... anyhow, love his work! I'm going to try to find a way to get some more. Hopefully Homegoods will get some cuter stuff in soon... with his fabric on it, cause I certainly can't afford it otherwise! :)

Friday, August 26, 2011

If You Give a Mouse a Candy...

Since we're between our old townhouse and our new house, we're living in my grandmother's basement, as I've mentioned. Basement living means that we sleep among nasty things like spiders and silverfish:

Eeeek, don't read this while eating. 

Aaaand also mice:

This is obviously not a picture of our mouse... mice.

I think we've now caught about 3 or 4 mice in the past 2 weeks.So I wanted to mention the Squeamish Rob method for mouse extraction.

The first night we were woken up by a mouse, Rob sent me upstairs to my Nana's Mouse Killing Arsenal (aka the basket in the pantry) in the kitchen to get a trap. I brought him back one like this:

Princess Rob did not like this trap. He called it a "primitive torture device". Yeeesh. Fine. 

So the next day at work I bought every type of trap Lowe's carries that isn't a primitive rodent guillotine...which was 2 products (hey this is Kentucky after all):

I figured he wouldn't have to SEE the dead mouse with this one. 


Well the mouse hotels didn't work at all. We baited them like told and they've just sat untouched this whole time. The glue traps work really well though. We placed one on either side of our bed, and one near the outside door and one under the desk. The glue pad next to Rob's side of the bed is the one that has caught EVERY single mouse so far. Haha, poor Rob keeps being woken up by frantic mouse squeakin' at 4am. 

So he wakes up, turns on all the lights so that I suffer as well.... and throws it out the door. The first night he felt sorry for the mouse so he gave it a piece of candy to nibble on while waiting for some predator to eat him off his glue prison. Such a soft heart. Now he just launches it out the front door, the impact of landing probably kills it anyways. But at least he didn't have to see it laying there dead right? Pansy.

Sorry we caught you... here, have a piece of candy while you wait for Mr. Next Door Cat.

By the way, don't google "mouse glue traps". I tried to find a picture of our brand of trap but just found image after image of halfway rotted dead mice stuck to them. WHY GOOGLE?! I am scarred for life now. 

EDITED TO ADD: I am not afraid of mice. At all. I blame it on the one time when I was 5 or so and I killed a mouse in our house with a plank of 2x4 because my cat was just staring at it. Silverfish are terrifying though!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Pinterest Art

I've been having a really rough week this week, so excuse the slow down on posts! I've got some photos to show of our cleaning sprees though so I'll get Rob to email them to me.

I've been absolutely itching to recreate this idea that I found on pinterest:

via pinterest

I imagine it above our bed and with a different poem/ lyric. The problem is that I can't seem to find one that I like with a whole bunch of lines. 

I really like the tail end of the Old Astronomer to His Pupil by Sarah Williams.

Though my soul may set in darkness, it will rise in perfect light;
I have loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night.

Obviously that's wayyy too short though. I'll keep thinking. 

I want it to go above the bed, like so:

Don't know what pinterest is? (Fellow bloggers avert your eyes! This is mainly for my family! ha) It's a site where you pin up all of your favorite images. It's like tearing out a page in a magazine to keep for inspiration, except its cataloged online. You can also search for inspiration for projects, like 'stairwell art' if you're stuck and need help. It also has images and purposes beyond just design, there are fashion images, recipes and pictures of yummy food, landscapes, art, etc. Warning though, it's addicting. 

If you want to join I can send you an invite/explain it in better detail. I won't offer for people to follow me though, mainly because my pinterest account is in my full name, but also because mine is just a jumble of inspiration and I don't read other people's boards anyways. I don't have time for that! :)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A New Bed and Various Other Purchases

Hello all, I am writing this very sore today. Rob and I spent hours last night in the new house scrubbing the living room walls and bleaching the kitchen surfaces. My shoulders ache!

I'm excited to show off what we bought at Ikea though! And explain why it took us two days to do our shopping. You see, we found two big things that we couldn't decide about. First was this bed:

 The new Hemnes in Gray Brown.

We've never actually owned a bed yet. Our king mattresses is lovely and deep (and was a gift from a family member thanks!) but we've never bought a bed for it. It was... uh....  propped up on plastic foot stools. Oh the shame. 

I DO own a bed skirt, but I hadn't bothered putting it on the bed since we were moving right away. Ignore the box springs. 

Okay now delete that embarrassment from your mind. We LOVED the color and new design of the Hemnes bed. They still sell the traditional Hemnes at Ikea, but they're discontinuing it. The new feels so much more polished and adult to us. 

There is not a huge amount of difference but the wood slats feel more sturdy and thick and the foot board looks much better. The wood is more detailed too, with grooves going along the sides and such. Look at the picture above from the actual store though, as usual the ikea website pictures make everything look awful. Whats with the flimsy mattresses?!

We loved the gray brown too but ended up buying the black brown. Mainly because while the gray brown is pretty, it would clash horribly with cherry/walnut/oak flooring choices and black looks awful next to it... and our nightstands are black. Oh well, the black brown is just more versatile. 

Obviously we bought it (that was the huge package strapped to our car) and now I have to wait a few weeks before I can put the bed together :( I miss our king sized bed! We're sleeping in a Queen bed in the basement right now. It's just too tight. 

The second thing we agonized over was this island:

I wanted the island NOW! But it was $379 so we decided to wait a while and make sure it would actually fit in the kitchen first. I marked out the dimensions in the house last night while cleaning and I'm still unsure. The stupid dishwasher door is completely in the way of island traffic so it might be difficult to manuever around. I'll put down some frog tape to see for sure nxt time we go.

That, plus the bed took a while to decide.

In the end, this is what we came home with!

Yes so: The Hemnes bed for $239, a billy bookcase for $49.99, a toliet brush (.99 cents), 2 $2,99 striped rugs for the sides of our new bed, a $14.99 track light for Rob's Mancave, 3 $1.99 wall clocks (we have a project planned for those), a $10 laptop stand (that's the black and white polka dots), 4 gosa styra pillows (on sale for $2 each in the As Is section), and another queen sized Henny Cirkel Duvet set for $8 in the As Is section. 

We're going to rip it apart and turn it into curtains. They have curtains in this same fabric but they're around $60 and that's crazy.

I got the Billy bookcase to go with my others:

Now I have 3 bookcases, and I probably could do with a fourth already. I read a LOT, and we have plans to add a library in our house :)

Here is a rough picture of the laptop stand in action by the way:
Obviously I have a polka dot and stripe addiction.

This weekend was so much fun. I love spontaneous trips, shopping, and being with Rob. Oh and the As Is section of Ikea, as I've already mentioned before.

Anyone else have embarrassing stories of their bed 'frames' or awesome Ikea buys?

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Dumpster Diving in Cincinnati and Roof Racks

We took a spur of the moment trip this weekend to Cincinnati. It's only an hour and a half away and ALL the good shopping is there like the Pottery Barn Outlet, Crate & Barrell, Anthropologie, Ikea, and various other clothing outlets.

I'll give you a hint to where we went shopping:

It's a sickness. We're totally addicted to Ikea. We spent 2 days in there, and thank god we stayed the night or we wouldn't have been done in time. We did some large furniture buying and it took FOREVER to narrow down our choices. That, and we scored in the As-Is section this morning-- it had been all picked over on Saturday afternoon.

We stayed in a dinky Extended Stay because it was cheapish.

Notice the lame 'art'. It's photos of a red wall and a red wall with a door/window in it. If it was a photo of an artsy run down place with peely paint then okay, but no they're plainly freshly painted buildings. Weird.

We've stayed in much worse places, and it was clean so I can't really complain, but I forgot my pillow so I had to do this in order to get to sleep:

I get easily creeped out in hotel rooms. I'm like Kate Gosslin, I never take my flipflops off or touch the coverlet on the bed.... or put my face on their pillows. eugh.

While we were leaving this morning, I spotted these by the dumpster at the questionable Super 8 next door:

Free large mirrors! We only snagged one, and now I wish we'd got like 4. :( But the Indian people who ran the hotel were giving us the stink eye so we got it and scrammed! We're going to add molding to it and put it in the kitchen or some place similar. I'm thinking about painting the back with chalkboard paint and making it reversible too :)

Anyhow. Our purchases at Ikea (more on that in a later post), required us to use a roof rack since both Rob and I drive hatchbacks which aren't very long... or wide. So Rob dragged me all over the city at various Auto stores (and a GIGANTIC Bass Pro Shop) until we finally found one he liked at... Walmart. 

This is him assembling the rack by superior brain power... the instructions kept referring to pictures that didn't exist.

Me with the roof rack in action! Good thing we only live 100 miles from Ikea...

This one is just two bars that have rubber feet. They have little pins that slip in between the doors of your car but the weight of the stuff is what really keeps in place. Rob tried to explain how you can only use roof racks when you have heavy stuff on the car but I kinda zoned in and out. Either way, this one is just $25 at Walmart if you ever need to add a rack to your car. You'll need ratchets too (those red straps). Neither of us knew how to use ratchets so this creepy ikea worker showed us how. He kept touching the small of Rob's back. I was very uncomfortable. 

We had to stop several times because we were paranoid-- it never slipped, we strapped it on well but it made horrible shrieking noises going down the interstate. 

One place we stopped at was this creepy hole in the wall town in Kentucky.

Allow me to zoom in on the building in the background...

I might have started to hear banjos dueling while looking at this place. 

I forget that Kentucky is quite redneck in parts... at least we weren't asked to squeal like a pig (Deliverance jokes if you don't recognize the banjos and pig references ;)). 

Friday, August 19, 2011

Washy washy washy

I had to avoid making a Ms. Wishy Washy joke in the title!

Anyways, as everyone knows, I work at the wonderful Lowes and we have a wonderful section in the appliance area known as "clearance". This is where customers have returned appliances and so they can no longer be sold for full price OR where items are repaired and then resold. So like refurbished ipods.

While pushing back regular returns yesterday I wondered into it just to see what they had and noticed that they had a matching (well close enough) set of Whirlpool Cabrio top loading washer and dryer. This is really rare. Normally you'll just find random banged up fridges, a maytag dryer, a roper, and then like a swanky, still $1000 samsung front loader. But never a washer and dryer that is the same brand, let alone a same model/type.

They do match perfectly, these are from different internet sites though so the gray knob bits on top look off! They're not in real life!

So obviously I told Rob about it and he swung by during his lunch break to check them out. And then we bought them after I got off work! :)

We got them both for an awesome deal, the washer is originally $699, and the dryer is $799 (it's a model up from the washer). We got the washer for $400 and the dryer for $471. The washer still has it's original warranty because it was returned within the 7 day period after buying (probably didn't fit his/her space well) and the dryer was repaired. It has a whole new electrical panel now. So for $871, we got a set that's usually $1400. I'll take $529 off!

Plus, we'll have a tax rebate come January. :) 

The ones we were originally considering...

... a GE set, are poop compared to our High Efficiency set. Our Washer is estimated to cost $13 per year to run. This makes me happy :) 

And yes, we could have got a front loading set of basic Frigidaire for the same price next weekend at the huge Lowe's Labor Day sales but we did not want front loaders, especially cheap ones. Hate me, I know, they're all the rage and everyone reading this will be shocked but that's our personal preference.


Oh and obviously this hate only applies to cheaper front loaders. I know the swanky sets could be amazing, but thats not in our price range! :)

Anywho, enough about the front loaders, and this is way too long of a post for a washer and dryer! We're just excited! And a bit shell shocked from spending that much. Aside from our cars that's the largest purchase we've both ever made. :( did anyone else research top loading/ front loading as hardcore as we did? Anyone have their front loaders for longer than 5 years and still love them? Am I prejudiced?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

I see London, I see France...

Sorry to drag you away from our stud muffin turtle, but I'll be bringing the blog back to home stuff now ;) ...unless I get more pictures of his yoga poses of course!! He's kinda shoved off into a corner of the basement right now so I know he'll be SUPER excited to get a window seat again in the new house.

Speaking of which, we did manage to hold off the imminent foreclosure, now we're looking at closing sometime next week depending on how on-the-ball our lender is, the paperwork is all filed, it just needs some bippity boppity boo (I just had to show Rob a youtube of the Cinderella sound clip from that song because he didn't understand ha).

Switching gears, I wanted to show off a piece of art we got this summer from my Nana for our graduations. Technically it was for Rob, but I helped pick it out! ;)

I'd say it's fitting for us yeah? My favorite trip while abroad was our weekend in London (well I went many times, but the first visit was the most special). It was the first traveling trip that I took with Rob so it's even more special to me. Plus we visited almost everything mentioned on the canvas, except for Wimbledon. 

Buckingham Palace at night

Parliament and Big Ben from the London Eye (a GIANT ferris wheel)

Platform 9 and 3/4 ala Hogwarts. What?!? It's a sight of London!! :)

OK, that's enough photos, I won't bore you. 

Anyways, plainly this art was meant for us, even if it's mass produced. It reminds me of subway art too, even though it's not black. 

We're not sure where it will go yet. It was meant for Rob's man cave but he's got a LOT of stuff to put in there, so I might insist that it goes in the living room. It makes me happy to see it since it reminds me of our trip. :)