Saturday, March 31, 2012

Who are you calling procrastinator?

If you know me, you know I am nothing if not a procrastinator. I know it is harder, but I always do things last minute.  Most of the time, this is my fault. Sometimes, it's not. For example, our current moving situation.

March 1st, Andy and I realized he wasn't having much success finding a job in Northern Colorado. We had a serious talk after one interview almost landed us a job in Colorado Springs. Where do we want to live? If he finds a job in NoCo, we are kinda stuck here, to buy a house, raise our kids, and live. Is that really what we want for our family? We decided, no. We have always had the dream of moving back to Denver, closer to our families, and closer to a city we love. Standing at this crossroads, we had to decide should we stay or should we go. We decided go.

Andy started putting in applications in Denver and had much better luck getting interviews and calls back. After only 3 weeks of searching (as opposed to the 3 months in NoCo) he was offered a job. This was GREAT news, but meant a lot of changes in a short amount of time. I had to leave my job and we had to find a place. We had to break our lease (we signed a 2 year lease. NEVER sign a 2 year lease...) and that is where things got kinda hairy. We were able to break our lease, under the caveat that we find someone else to occupy the unit. We ideally wanted to be out by April 1st, but he got the job on March 22nd, so we knew there wasn't a ton of time. We advertised on craigslist, showed a bunch of people, and realized we were just going to have to wait until May to move. We had come to terms with that and then yesterday (March 30th) a lady came by, saw the place, and wanted to move in April 1st. We sent her the way of our Landlords and this morning she signed a lease, starting April 1st (which is tomorrow for those who don't have a calendar in front of them)

We had an idea last night that we would have to start packing, so we have already gotten a jump on that, but we found out FOR SURE that we are moving TOMORROW only about an hour ago (it's noon, for those who are reading this after noon)

So needless to say, I am a procrastinator, but sometimes Life procrastinates for you.

Which leads me to another point. When I put my mind to something, I can make it happen. On March 1st, when we had our talk, we made the decision that we wanted Andy to find a job, and us move down to Denver by April 1st. We sure cut things a little close, but we did it.

So goodbye little condo, hello temporary living situation. The best part about a new apartment is getting to decorate it! And boy do I have big ideas!

Tomorrow I am going to document the moving process so I will have a big post on Monday with lots of pictures and WAY too much information about my life, just like I like it!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Mmmm! Garlic Knots!

I have been craving garlic knots! I looked in the fridge and saw that we had a can of biscuits, and I had an idea. I turned those biscuits into garlic knots!

What you need:

Can o' Biscuits

Melted butter

Garlic Salt

Italian Seasoning


1. Pop the biscuits open and roll them into a snake. Tie the snake in a knot.


2. Brush the melted butter over the knots and sprinkle with Garlic salt and Italian seasoning.

3. Bake at 350 for 17 minutes (or until cooked in the middle)

4. Pop them out, brush more butter and more garlic salt ;)

OMG YUM! Bring on the Marinara Sauce!!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

New place, new bedroom

As you probably know about me, I like to switch things up. A little change in your life is never a bad thing. One thing Andy and I decided a few weeks ago is that we need a king size. Well, need is a strong word, but we really really want one! A king size bed means a new bed, new mattress, new bedding (my favorite part) and a new chance to put fun stuff together! I love it! I also have a new rule, if you don't own it, don't paint it. This means our next place (wherever it may be) will not be painted to my liking. This will save me a lot of trouble in the end, and when we own our house, I can paint it as many colors as I want! But for now, I have to stick with what I have, or figure out ways to decorate less permanently.

We found some plans to make a frame, from this awesome tutorial at Beautiful Inspirations. I am very excited to follow her tutorial and make our own gorgeous bed!

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I am imagining it in white, but Andy thinks that will get dirty really fast. I am still loving white, but we will see. I love the look of this.

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I also love that bedding!

I love this bedding too!

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To add color to the walls without paint, I like the idea of a wall of curtains (in Grey I think) behind the bed. It adds romance, and drama, without being permanent. I also think a big piece of art over the bed will add interest.

I don't really need a dresser, but I am in love with the Hemnes collection in white! I would put our tv on it, and use it to store things we don't hang.

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So that is what I am dreaming about as I lay my head to sleep.


Saturday, March 24, 2012

The end of an Era...

Looking back, we remember one of the greatest love stories of our generation. Like all great love stories, and most books written by Nicolas Sparks, this love story has a sad ending. Boy and girl live with stripes, blissfully in love, for 10 months, until one day a landlord something comes between boy and girl and their stripes, and their relationship comes to a tragic end.

That's right, the stripes have to go. Lets be honest, who didn't see this coming... Stripes are not for everybody, and they sure don't make it easy to find new tenants, so we had to bid them good bye. This is especially bittersweet for boy and girl after the extreme pain in the ass they were to begin with. Alas, with a coat of off white paint/primer they are on their way to the land where stripes go to die.

Ok this is all kinda ridiculous, but seriously these stripes were such a pain that it really kills us to have to paint over them.

It's almost like they were never here. Lets take a walk down memory lane...

So here is the part of the story where we stop crying and realize the lesson in all of this. While painting over the stripes is painful, it is just one of 279 steps in all the 279 changes taking place in our lives right now. Andy and I have quit our jobs and broken our lease in hopes of landing on both of our feet, happy, in Denver (metro area). Is it risky? Yes, but a calculated risk. Is it nerve-racking not knowing where you are going to live in a week? OMG YES! But will everything be 100% better in the end? YES! I believe deep down in my heart that we are meant to make this move and live closer to our families. The opportunities on the horizon are fresh and exciting and we can't wait!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Well, here we go again!

Yep, we are moving, again! But this time it's a little crazier and a lot faster! We are going to be busy busy in the next week cleaning and packing and just getting ready to move! I am excited and nervous and excited again about all the changes taking place in our lives!

I can't wait to share all the hairy details!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Seriously Inspired

As you know, I follow a few blogs. By follow I mean read religiously every morning like one might the morning paper. One blog I have been following for over a year now is Young House Love. Young House Love is a blog about a young couple working to make their house a home. They are full time blog at home parents so it is updated 5 days a week with awesome tutorials and inspiring projects. They have been working on their Kitchen Renovation for the last 5 months and today they posted the after photos. I have been awaiting this moment with bated breath.... seriously. :)


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I am so inspired by the work they have done in their home! In under $7000, they gutted their kitchen and made it work for them. Check out their blog and be inspired. I can't wait to buy a house and do the same!

Monday, March 19, 2012

We bought a car!

As I love to blog about everything in our lives, how could we buy a car and not blog about it!
We used to have two cars. A 1998 Subaru Outback and a 2004 Volkswagen Passat. About 4 months ago, the Subaru broke down and needed a new transmission. We had put a lot of money into repairing the Subaru so when the transmission went out, we decided not to fix it, and to make due with one car. That worked well enough, only needing to catch a ride a few times, but Andy just got a new job 50 miles away, so the one car thing isn't going to work anymore. We knew we would have to buy a car. With so many options out there, here is how we chose what we chose.

1. New or Used?
This is probably the first question you should ask yourself. Both have their merits, and both have setbacks. Lets start with New. The #1 benefit for me with a new car was the Warrantee. 10 yr/100,000 miles with no maintenance costs sounded like a dream! It would give us the security of knowing if the car broke, we could get it fixed at no cost. Another benefit was knowing it's history. When you buy a used car, you don't know how it was used. You can run a car very hard in not so many miles, so not knowing what might be wrong or going wrong in the near future is a gamble. Being the only owner of your car gives you the security of knowing where it's been. A setback of a new car is the depreciation of value. Unfortunately the minute you drive your car off the lot, your car isn't worth as much as you payed for it. This is a sucky truth of buying a new car. So lets look at the pros and cons of a Used car. With a used car, you are going to get a better deal. We looked at two cars, one was a 2012 and one was a 2011. Exact same car. The 2011 was $5,000 less because it was older. One year old to save that kind of money is not a bad trade. The pros of a new car are the cons of a used one. Miles you didn't get to drive on the car, not knowing the history, and usually no warrantee. So you really have to decide what is important to you and how much you are willing to pay. We decided we wanted something new. The warrantee was such a great benefit that it was worth all the cons.

2. Type of Car
Once you decide whether you are looking for something new or used, you should narrow down what kind of car you want. Take into account the number of people that will need to ride in the car, storage/ trunk space, and any other needs you may have (like hauling lumber for us). That should point you toward a sedan, midsize, suv or truck. knowing the type of car will help you decide on make and model. We decided we wanted a midsize. We need space in the back for Max so when we have kids he doesn't ride in the back seat with them. Speaking of kids, we wanted something big enough to hold two car seats because we plan to have this car for the next 10+ years. We also tend to purchase lumber to build furniture with. We need a car large enough to haul home lumber. The one thing we loved about the Subaru is that it had all of these things. We loved the hatch back and the large trunk space, so we knew we wanted something similar.

3. Make/ Model
Once you know what type of car you want, it's time to do a little research. We googled "best midsize suv's" and "most fuel efficient suv's" to get an idea of what was out there. We also turned to Facebook to ask out friends and family what they had and their recommendations. Our efforts turned up the Hyundai Tuscon, Kia Sorrento, Mitsubishi Outlander and the Ford Edge. We looked online for more information and listed eliminated the Ford Edge because of price. We wanted to stay under $25,000.

4. Go Shopping
The only way to decide what you really want is to sit in it and test drive it. Pick a dealership and start looking. Our first choice was Hyundai so we went to the dealership and started looking around. On our way to look at the Tuscon, we saw the Elantra Touring.

This wasn't a car that was even on our radar, but it fit what we were looking for, so we took a closer look. The price for the Elantra Touring was between $16,500 for a manual transmission base model and $21,500 for an automatic transmission Sport Edition (with all the bells and whistles). We sat in it, and test drove it and really liked what it had to offer and especially the price. After looking at that, we wanted to check out the Tuscon. We walked over and immediately saw the price difference (starting out at $23,000) and were kinda turned off. I hopped in to see if I liked how it felt and it sat up very high, more like a van and less like a car. I was unimpressed, so we moved on. We saw that they had two used 2011 Kia Sorentos for sale, so we asked to look at one of them. The price wasn't marked (which according to my Father in Law, is normal for a used car) and I sat in it and it wasn't as comfortable as the Elantra Touring. So we went back to the Elantras and decided to get an automatic transmission base model and we wanted it to have black interior. Unfortunately this car didn't exist at our dealership :( We asked the guy helping us if he could find one in the area at a different dealership and they couldn't find one. Because he couldn't find one, he offered us the Sports Edition (the fancy one) in Automatic for $19,000, $2,500 off the asking price. We jumped at the deal! We could get all the bells and whistles, black interior (in the SE it was leather, which is what we wanted to begin with) and it was a very reasonable price! We said  yes.

5. The long part...

No one ever told me how long it takes to buy a car. I assumed it took a little while to sign the papers and get everything official, but I had no idea how it would go. It took about 2 hours to get everything figured out. Long story short, the car was ours!

Here is our new baby!!!

We decided to go with a gray exterior and the black leather interior. Andy wanted a red exterior but I thought it looked cheap. The SE comes with all sorts of goodies like steering wheel radio controls, XM radio for 3 months free, a blue tooth hands free phone system, heated seats, a sun roof and leather! Definitely worth the extra money :)

So that is our car buying experience. Things I learned are you can negotiate a price. If there is something you really want, don't settle for what they have, ask. You might get what you really really want for a great deal! Be prepared to wait a while when all the loan stuff starts. We should have brought snacks. Bring someone who has bought a car with you. They will know what questions to ask and how to get you a good deal. Had we gone alone, we would have payed sticker price.

Any fun car buying stories out there? What do you think of our new car!?

Friday, March 16, 2012

Mood Board

This is a mood board. I have never done a mood board before!  Usually when I am thinking about a room, I do it in a series of pictures, but I thought I would try something new. I am trying out a new version of Photoshop called Photoshop Elements, so I thought I would see what it could do. I used to work with a full version of Photoshop, but they only let you use the free membership for 30 days before you have to buy it. And a full version of Photoshop costs $600+ to buy, so that was a no go. When a blog I follow, teal & lime, posted about her mood boards and how she made them, she mentioned Photoshop Elements and that it was only $80 so I thought I would look into it. So far I am pretty pleased.

Never the less, I thought I would try my hand at a mood board. I took major elements I already have, the couch, ottoman, and rug, and added things I would like to have, like a wall of bookshelves and those awesome yellow end tables from Crate and Barrel (or some knock offs I make with wood :) )

Here is a list of items in the mood board:

Couch & Ottoman- Ikea, Kivik Collection, Color- Dansbo Dark Gray. I own both of these pieces and I am in LOVE!

Rug- Ikea, Aborg High Pile, 5'7 x 7'10. I also own this and it is the softest, squshiest rug ever. You must buy it.

End Table- Crate and Barrel, Mimic Lemongrass Cube. I saw this and fell in love. It is metal and glass, but I think I would like it better in wood.

Accent Pillows- Etsy, Outdoor Accent Pillow. I don't really love buying pillows, these are just inspiration to make some cool pillows in a fun accent color like Coral.

Wall of Bookshelves- This image is from a blog I love, Centsational Girl, and she built a wall of built in shelves using Ikea Billy Bookcases. I love ikea and I love the look, so this is a must have for me!

This mood board is a work in progress. It really is missing something blue :) But I got tired last night and decided to stop lol.

So this is my non-expert first version of a mood board. What do you think!?

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Sew Exciting!

First I want to say Hi and thanks to all the people that stopped by yesterday for the Pinterest Challenge! Yesterday brought a heart stopping 680 hits! Wow! I hope some of you stick around!

After breaking in my new sewing machine for my Pinterest Challenge yesterday, I have an itch to sew some more! Here are some tutorials from other blogs I follow that I have been dying to try!

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1. Cosmetic bag from

2. 3 Stitch Dress from

3. Casserole Carrier from

4. Anywhere Chair from

5. Re-usable Snack Bags from

I can't wait to try out these awesome tutorials!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Winter Pinterest Challenge- Reveal

Last Wednesday, some of my favorite blogging ladies, Sherry at Young House LoveKatie at Bower PowerErin from The Great Indoors, and Cassie from Hi Sugarplum threw down a Pinterest Challenge. I was searching through my Pinterest board "Things to do" and I came across these "Un-paper towels" I found on Cottontail Babies  a while back. I LOVE being green and using reusable materials so I jumped on this idea!

First step was finding a flannel fabric that didn't have a cartoon character on it! I am not sure why this was so difficult, but it was by far the lengthiest part of this project. I finally found a pattern that I love and that matches my decor at Joann's in the "Quilting Flannel" section.

I love the color and the pattern is subtle but feminine. For the back, I chose a plain white terry cloth.

I followed the tutorial above, but I will outline the steps anyway :) I cut my flannel and terry cloth into a 12 inch square. I laid them right sides together (there is really only a "right side" on the flannel)

And pinned it all the way around.

Then I sewed around the square, pivoting at the corners.

I left about 2 inches open and flipped it right-side-out. I pinned the opening and topstitched the whole way around, pivoting at the corners again.

Trim your strings and tada- Un-paper towel! In the tutorial, she mentions putting snaps on the corners so you can wrap them up on a roll, like paper towels, but I couldn't find the right kind. I will keep looking and maybe add them if I want to. I bought 2 yards of each fabric, and I should be able to get 18 out of that total. I have only made 3, but I will keep working on them as I have some more time.

The tutorial I used stressed the importance of cutting and sewing a straight line. I cut and sewed mostly straight lines, but I am a novice sewer, so they aren't perfect. BUT that imperfection is my favorite part of everything I make. I made it, so it isn't perfect, and you can tell that. I don't plan to sell anything I make, so it's imperfections are what make it great. So don't be intimidated if you aren't a great sewer. This was a very easy project and GREAT for a novice sewer like myself.

So there ya go! My most successful Pinterest challenge yet!

What did you make? Link up below so I can see! :)

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Whole House Color Scheme

I have a lot of ideas, and a lot of things I love. But one thing I am really missing is a whole house color scheme. Good thing I haven't had to decorate a whole home before ;) But I have been thinking about what my future home would look like and how I would use all the colors I love in a cohesive way. I obviously want to use Grey, Blue, Yellow and white, but I also love ranges in those colors. I like teals and royal blues, dark grey and light gray, creamy yellow and bright yellow and I also love accent colors like green, red, and purple.

There is this really cool website called Design Seeds that puts together different color pallets coupled with really neat pictures! If you have some time to kill, you really should look through it. Anyway, this site gives me tons of color inspiration. Check out these color pallets I love!

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Looking through those color pallets, I realize I am not closer to a whole house color scheme... oh well. I guess I have enough time to figure that all out. In the mean time, I can look at pretty color pallets on design seeds for fun :)

Sunday, March 11, 2012

King Bed Dreaming

After spending 3 nights in a King size bed in Vegas, Andy and I determined it is time to get a King size bed. We currently share a Queen size bed with our 65 pound dog Max and it's getting a bit crowded. It has even come to me sleeping on the couch because Max and Andy are such bed hogs. So before we jump up and buy a new bed, we want to have a plan to build a new King size bed frame. Of course when we do, we will share all the hairy details (we are good at that) but for now, I am just dreaming of a bed where I can have a little sleeping space.

We built our current bed, and while we love the rustic-ness of the solid wood frame, it is freaking heavy (not exaggerating, 250-300lbs of wood) and I have been lusting over something a little more luxurious. So I turn to Pinterest (duh) to find some inspiration.

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I found this picture on where you can purchase the bedspread. I love the frame and the bedspread! I really have been lusting over a white upholstered headboard. So romantic, and I like the idea of sitting against it without needing a pillow for softness.

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I also like the structure of this one, with the dark wood frame around it. It reminds me of a hotel room.

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I LOVE the big tufts in this headboard. It looks so soft and luxurious! So I know what kind of headboard I want, but I don't want the frame to be wasted space. I like these plans from to build a storage bed frame.

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This frame with a big, cushy upholstered headboard is exactly what I have in mind!  Obviously I am only dreaming, for now, but I can't wait to sleep with my own space on a huge King size bed!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

We went to Vegas!

So last weekend, Andy and I went on a quick vacation to Vegas. We had been looking for a great deal on tickets for a while, and in early February we found one that made us jump. We were stalking Expedia, and other travel sites, keeping an eye out for Groupons and finally one yielded results. We booked a 3 night stay with two round trip tickets for $420 TOTAL on We stayed in the Riviera and flew United. We wanted to spend as little as possible, so we set out on a mission to do a weekend in vegas in under $1000 total (including air and hotels). I am excited to share how we were able to do that and have a GREAT weekend.

First, we budgeted all of our money. We took cash, so we could monitor what we were spending in which category. We had a baggie for Food, Transportation, Gambling and Entertainment. For two days in Vegas, we budgeted $200 for food, $100 for transportation, $100 for gambling and $100 for Entertainment. We did some research of what we wanted to do, so we could get the best deals possible. We knew we wanted to go to the Price is Right Live so we planned on spending that money. We had a general idea of restaurants we wanted to hit, and things we wanted to see/do. Planning really helps you save money.

When you get to the airport and are deciding the best way to get to your hotel, you have to decide on a shuttle or a taxi. Since no shuttles go to the Riviera (that we could find) we opted with taxi. The taxi driver will ask you if you want to take the highway. SAY NO! It takes WAY longer and he makes more money on your ignorance. We learned this when our taxi ride TO the hotel was $40 but from the hotel to the airport was only $13. Lesson Learned!

Once we got to the hotel, we had to wait in a huge line to check in. This is normal. If you get into Vegas and you want to go right out to see the sights and gamble, you can leave your bags with the Bellman and be on your way. Just check in later. We got in at 1:30 am so we were just ready to get to our room to sleep :)

While staying at the Riviera is cheaper, it is farther from the big name hotels you probably went to Vegas to see. It is on the strip, but it is pretty far north. This means you will have to find a way to get to the south side without your legs falling off. I recommend the Deuce. The Deuce is a double decker bus that runs up and down the strip all day long. It is only $7 for 24 hours (and calculates that from the minute you buy it) which is a great deal. It stops in front of most hotels, and you can ride it unlimited for those 24 hours. We would take the Deuce everywhere. Of course, you can walk, which we did a lot of, but for those long distances, $7 is totally worth it.

If you want to see a show, DO NOT BUY THE TICKETS FROM THE BOX OFFICE! Sorry to yell but you are seriously wasting your money. ALL over the strip are these booths called "Tix 4 Tonight" that sells half price or discounted tickets. They don't have tickets for everything (sorry if you wanted to see Garth Brooks) but they do have all of the Cirqe shows and they had Price is Right, which is what we wanted to see. We were expecting to pay $52 a ticket, which is the listed price. At the Tix 4 Tonight, we paid $23 per ticket. That is less than half! The tickets were great, in the 4th row center, and we talked to the people the row in front of us, and they paid full price! They were pissed and we were smug.

The Tix 4 Tonight also has deals on eating, so check there too. We didn't get any of those because we weren't planning on eating anywhere fancy, but you could get half off your meal at the Bally's Steakhouse for $5. Not a bad deal at all. Speaking of food, skip the buffet. I know it seems like "such a good deal" all you can eat, but the food is almost always crappy and not worth the $20 a head to get in. I was very disappointed with the quality and selection, and stopped by Subway because I was hungry.

If you love to gamble, I can't help you spend less money. Just be conservative and try not to blow your child's college fund or your retirement money on the slots or tables. We took $100 to gamble and we decided to find a slot we enjoyed (the Batman game) and see if we could find it at every casino we went into. If we did, we would put in $5 and play it down. Or if we won, we would pull it out and put in another $5. We were able to only spend $100 gambling, and we had lots of fun.

All in all, we had a great vacation, saw a lot, walked even more, and really enjoyed ourselves. It felt even better bringing home money, and coming in under budget at $915 spent. Yes, $1000 is a lot for one weekend with two people, but you could do far worse in Vegas.

And now for some pictures!