Thursday, April 28, 2011

Spring Organizing (Closet #2)

The office closet had gotten out of control:

It was my giant junk drawer. But not anymore.

I did a thorough clean sweep on this closet – going through every piece of paper in it. Check out the rejects:

But it was totally worth the effort:

And since I got rid of so much paper, I rewarded myself by adding more to my "mini paper store" stash:

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Paint apparently doesn't fix all

It's been freakishly cold in Kansas City for the past week, so the heater has played a staring role in the Miller household. So when I couldn't turn the heating/cooling on using the thermostat this weekend – I started seeing $$$ and getting rather nervous.

After trying new batteries and other cheap fixes, we had our heating and cooling guy come out today. It's never a good sign when you can baffle the pros. After lots of trips up and down the stairs, he discovered the wiring was going bad. Ugh.

Then he asks, "have you hung anything up in the living room recently?" Nope.

As he journeys back to the basement, I start thinking of the man cave, and then the ceiling I'm still (yes, still) painting. And how last week, before the non-existent sectional arrived – I painted the front half of the ceiling...including the wires. Crap.

Paint was indeed the issue. Apparently, some of the wiring the previous owners did wasn't correct, and some wires were exposed. And once I painted over it, bad things happened.
Thankfully, everything is now to code, working and fixed without breaking the bank.

I'm just so happy he asked me that question, because I would have never made the connection. Especially, considering the painting and thermostat incidents were 5 days apart.

Apparently, paint does not fix all.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Tall crush

I am smitten for CB2's high dining tables.

Do I plan on buying one? Nope. But I am enjoying my impractical dreams of busting out these tables during parties (that's right, in my dreams – I definitely own several of these guys). I love hightop tables.

In furniture news: I'm starting to wonder if Brent and I will ever be futon-free in the man cave. When we moved into the house, we had the money for the furniture, and the day before we went shopping, Brent's car decided it wanted the money instead. And that started the "always something" trend. The new something? Thermostat isn't turning anything on. We have someone coming out tomorrow, and I'm praying this won't break the bank (or furniture fund) too much.

In landscaping news: It has been cold and rainy for the past 2 weeks. So, I have accomplished nothing. I'm getting rather tired of this 40-degree weather.

In job news: I heard back from the place I interviewed with, and I've moved on to the design-test round. So, if I seem a little quiet, it's because I have magazine layouts to dream up.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Sofa shopping has begun

After the CL drama (and finding no other acceptable man cave sitting on there), Brent and I decided to hit up some furniture stores today.

We actually found 2 that we liked – a microfiber sectional and a leather sofa set. Originally, we were dead set on the sofa set, but with 2 sofas (who needs a loveseat), but when we came back and did some measuring, we discovered that we literally did need a loveseat. Ugh.

So now it's looking like a sectional is the best solution for the narrow space.

This is the current winner:

(Try not to be too distracted by the terrible coffee table).

The obstacle now is making sure we can actually get it into the basement. Brent took all the door and hallway measurements tonight, and hopefully on Monday we'll find out good news about the furniture guys being able to make it work.

In other news: Brent got to experience US Toy for the first time today. In a store full of little kid party favors, leave it to him to find the mini toilet toy with a smiling piece of poo in it (that can squirt water at you when you open the lid). I'm still shocked he didn't try to sneak it into the cart. Maybe this is a sign of maturity?

Thursday, April 21, 2011

So mad

Apparently, "we're leaving now, see you in an hour" is now code for "we're going to stand you up."

Yep, the sectional lady was a no-show. Brent and I are livid...and sad. All our furniture has already been moved out of the man cave, so I spent last night laying on the floor.

It amazes me how inconsiderate people can be.

On to the next sofa search...

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Curb Appeal (day 4)

What we left off with on day 3:

With how long the first set of timbers took Brent to remove, I wasn't expecting to get too much work done – so imagine my surprise when they all came out together:

What my timber-free landscape is looking like:

Yep, it's so much better already.

Next, we started the part I've been dreading – digging out the path:

And since I apparently need to run into a snafu each day I work on this project – we found a block of concrete in the middle of our path. After some debate, we decided it had to have been a gas lamp at some point.

Day 4 final:

I think Brent's chipped away at the concrete enough now, that we should be good.

I'm not sure when I'll have time for my "day 5," but I am happy with the progress I've made so far. Ideally, I'd like everything ready for flowers and shrubs by April 29th – which is when my favorite charity plant sale is.

Monday, April 18, 2011


I am so excited! I found this guy on CL, and Brent and I are picking it up tonight. This sectional will be perfect for the man cave.

Update: Ugh. Just got an email from the lady and she has decided to keep it. Guess the futon in the man cave will stay for awhile more.

Update 2: Apparently, I am getting the sectional again – the lady just wanted to keep it until she picks up her furniture on Wednesday. And since she'll be in the area, it will now be delivered to my garage. Sweet!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Beer-tasting party paper package

One of the most common questions I receive from readers is asking where I got my invitations, notepads, etc., from the beer-tasting party I threw for Brent's 30th. My reply back is always a "sorry, I didn't buy them anywhere – I made them."

Sadly, it never occurred to me that I could market this. When I started researching beer-tasting parties there was nothing out there (which was exciting and devastating), so I've decided to change that.

The beer-tasting party paper package includes high-res PDFs of...


An 11x17 sign..

Notepads (sized to be directly uploaded/printed at VistaPrint)...

Food labels...

Beer category signs...

So, I hope this helps some of my readers out. All these goodies and more are under the new tab Paper Obsessed.

**I am linking up with DIY Show Off and Craft-O-Mania.**

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Curb Appeal (days 2 and 3)

Slight hold up on the landscaping, those timbers are evil!

In 2 days, we went from this:

To this:

Yep, that took us 2 days. And this progress even involved chains and my SUV. It's getting somewhere though. I'm hoping to start the next retaining wall on Thursday.

Curb Appeal (day 1)

Well, the bushes have been removed, and that alone is a massive improvement.



We have stairs!

Then I drew out the line I wanted to follow for the first retaining wall:

The top walls progress:

I'm not going to lie, building a retaining wall is zero fun. Making sure each stone is level takes forever. I'm really not looking forward to the one I'll have to do where the timber starts. But it will be worth the time and foul language spent.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Curb Appeal (the game plan)

Full disclosure: I'm not a fan of my front yard.

Nothing tragic, but nothing exciting either. It's just blah, and I've decided that needs to change.

The Game Plan:
- Remove the bushes (I don't like not being able to see the stairs, plus they are dying)
- Remove the old-school timber things
- Add several retaining walls
- Then pretty it up with flowers and shrubs

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Home Depot's Spring Black Friday

I'm so excited Home Depot is bringing this back! Their sale starts today and goes until Sunday. You can get a fabulous price on mulch and soil.

But I am most excited about this:

Sure it's only a $.12 discount, but that adds up.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

New pillows!

I had my favorite seamstress make me new pillows for the family room, and I am loving the black and white! (Confession, I've had them for about a month but I've been busy with Netflix's instant streaming – watching 30 Rock, Parks & Rec and Lost. Totally worth it).

Once I'm employed, replacing the shag rug is the first thing on my list. Dogs and shag do not go together. Just a heads up.

In other news: I got my first interview today! Sure it may not lead to anything, but it's a step in the right direction.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Spring Organizing (Closet #1)

After my medicine drawer rant, I decided my drug turf in the linen closet could use some serious decluttering (hello, Tylonel from 2007 – I'm talking to you). Well, at least that's what I intended to do. But when I opened the linen closet, I discovered what an embarrassing war zone the entire closet was.

The embarrassing war zone:
So, I emptied it:

Then decided I had nothing else going on, so painted both the walls and shelves:

I picked green because it's bright, but more importantly, because I had a lot of this paint leftover from the hall bath.

Then came Target. I promise this trip started off innocent. I had a prescription to pick up, which apparently earned me a $10 Target gift card since it was a new med. So I mosied over to Target's storage area, and that's where things took a turn. I stared down 2 bins for at least 20 minutes. Yep, I just stood there and stared, while trying to visualize my super narrow linen closet and what would fit. I'm sure I looked awesome.

Anywho, on to the after...

I am so happy with it. And other than some (okay lots) of expired medicine and 1 pair of sheets – everything is back in there. Yet I somehow have much more room! I love organizational magic tricks. :)

And now some less awkward angle shots:No more searching for a special medicine. Things are now grouped into 6 categories: first aid, cold, aches, allergies, Ashley's and other.

And since I'm still on organizing mode, I've decided to tackle 3 more closets – the office and the 2 in the entry way.

Monday, April 4, 2011

That time of year

I can't believe it's already yard work time. It's gross and exciting all at the same time.

I'm currently de-leaving the landscape of the backyard – it's quite the chore:
So far no frogs have attacked me this year, so that's something. Although, I'm still nervous about having to remove leaves behind the shed (maybe that can be Brent's job).

Flowers are starting to bloom though, so I'm wanting to get all my landscaping tasks done asap.

Landscaping goals:
- Remove the lilies of the valley
- Remove the vine on the lattice and add climbing roses
- Remove the bushes in the front and relandscape

Anyone else have any exciting landscaping plans?

Sunday, April 3, 2011


In my cough-syrup drunkenness 2 weeks ago, I saw this photo and got really mad:

Mad enough to save the photo and plan an entire post about my rant. Today, I found the photo and well, that's about it. I vaguely remember being mad at this medicine drawer because there's no place for cough syrup (leave it to the girl coughing up a lung to discover this), but that's all I've got.

While this photo does look nice, to a medicine junky like myself – there is definitely no way. Look how few pills there are. And I'm really good at letting medicine expire, so the opened Tylonel thing going on is a bad idea for this girl.

I will be honest though, this photo has definitely gotten me in the mood to organize. So closets (and medicine) beware.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Team moss

I'm joining every other decor blogger out there and making a moss wreath.

I've never really been a fan of wreaths. I think it's because whenever I think of them, I picture the country ones from the early '90s. My parents definitely had one in that famous country blue with a wooden duck on it. I may need therapy after revisiting that memory.

Anyway, I went to Joanns for my supplies (I picked Joanns because they seem to have the biggest letters, and I had lots of their coupons):

Let the hot gluing games begin!

I've decided the "M/W" are the most annoying letters to do this project for. There are some very narrow and difficult areas to do. Halfway through, when my fingers began to hurt, I began extremely jealous of all the "I" last names. Some people just have it so easy. :)

The back doesn't have to be pretty. Here's mine:

The final product:

I'm really happy with how it turned out, and I love how huge the M is. Brent said he could see it 3 houses down. Point for me!

Friday, April 1, 2011

You can't make this stuff up...

Well, I guess you can (especially with it being April Fool's Day), but this is most definitely real.

I ordered a new shower curtain several weeks ago for the hall bath, although I wasn't sure if it was going to work colorwise (green always seems to photograph weird).

Fast forward to last Friday when I got the package. I was busy working on the paper pom-poms for the couple's shower – so all I did was open the box and observe the shade of green. After that, I placed the shower curtain on the living room chair and forgot about it. When Brent got home, he went into the living room and got way too excited about said curtain.

Brent: Is this our new shower curtain?

Me: Yes.

Brent: This is awesome.

Me: Glad you like it.

Brent: (laughing) Did you see the name?

Me: What? Did I misspell my name? Because I totally blame all the cough syrup.

Brent: What! You really didn't see the name?!?! I'm disappointed in you.

Me: What'd I do?

Brent: Not you! The name of the shower curtain is douche!

Me: What?!?!?!

Yep, I apparently bought a douche shower curtain. Please admire:

Although, for the record – the company name on the Internet was Plush Living. And sadly, I think the green is too bright, but at least it gave me a giggle.