Thursday, September 30, 2010

Rain in LA

The weather here in Los Angeles has been a little spazzy this year.  We had torrential downpours during the winter (conveniently timed immediately before and after our wedding), a mostly gloomy and cool summer, and now a ridiculously hot fall.  Suffice to say, I'm really looking forward to the central air and heating in our new place.


But last night, we went out to look at the gorgeous sunset, and realized that it was raining! Like full on thunder and lightening storms.  The warm sudden rainstorm was bizzare and all of us Angelinos, but the break in the heat and the lovely view made the resulting traffic (that I didn't have to sit in) totally awesome
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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Please Don't Stop The Music

My dad was a radio DJ during the 70's.  He still works for a radio station now (although no longer in the booth) and has submerged me in all types of music since I was young.  I have inherited my love of music from him. 

My dad and I

A good song can undoubtably cheer up a bad mood.  It can fill me with memories or excitement or passion.  It can even kick a workout into high gear.  I am that girl who sings (loudly) and dances in the car.  The one who listens to music all day at work.  The one who jumps up and down and sings along at concerts, or even in the middle of a local bar.

From this comes my love for Pandora.  I discovered Pandora (an internet radio station that plays songs based on your favorite artists or songs) a few years ago, when I was trying to figure out how to play non-stop holiday music through December (my poor coworkers).  It all started with "Vince Guaraldi Trio Holiday," followed shortly by "Mariah Carey Holiday" (did I mention my taste is somewhat ecclectic?), and progressed from there.


I have *discovered* many new artists from my love of other ones and enjoyed countless hours of happiness on my computer, laptop or phone.  I've listed some of my favorite stations below for you to try if you're in the mood for something new...

The Police
The Postal Service
Ella Fitzgerald
Glee
Fleetwood Mac 
RENT
Love Story (Taylor Swift)
Journey
Coconut Records
Lady Gaga
Backstreet Boys
(yes, I admit it...and if you feel like re-living the fabulousness that is 90's pop you should try it too)

Leave me a list of your favorite Pandora stations for me to add to my list! Pin It

Monday, September 27, 2010

HomeGoods Happiness

Raise your hand if you've ever been to HomeGoods.  If not, I'm going to share an amazing secret with you today. (And please enjoy some photos of my favorite HomeGoods buys throughout the blog)

For months, my mom bugged me to go with her.  She told me about all of these amazing things that she was picking up for dirt cheap.  But of course, I pretty much ignored her. 


Until one lazy day last fall when I had the day off and decided to accompany her on a shopping trip.  We walked in.  My first reaction was that *everything* was cute.  Hubby and I had just moved in together, so I was in decorating mode. 

But these things have to be expensive right?  The gorgeous dishes?  The massive serving platters?  The three foot glass vases?  The silver photo frames?  The pillar candles?  I started examining price tags and found out that I was wrong.


I had shopped at Crate and Barrel and Pottery Barn.  I had shopped at Target and Michaels.  And I loved them all.  But never have I found a deal on the things I want most like the deals that I find at HomeGoods.

Oh and did I mention that they constantly change their stock to reflect the nearest season, holiday or other theme?  All of my holiday stuff is from...you guessed it...HomeGoods.

I even found something pretty to store Hubby's change in...

So look it up.  Go check it out.  And come back and let me know what you find.  You won't be dissapointed.  I promise.


Note: This post was not in any way sponsored by HomeGoods...but if they decide they want to sponsor me, I would sell my soul and my first born in the drop of a hat... Pin It

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Yoga + Spin = Happiness?

After almost a year of pushing myself on the treadmill or forcing myself to go to cardio boot camp classes, I made a decision.  I have been working out with the goal of burning calories and losing weight.  And sometimes it works.  But most of the time, it's miserable

I know how she feels...

So from now on (special occasions exempt), I will be exercising with the goal of being happy and healthy.  Have you ever noticed that you're more likely to go to the gym when you're going to a class that you enjoy?  Before I started at Equinox, I used to go to a studio called Pure Barre, which was a mix of yoga, pilates and ballet which seriously toned your tush, abs and thighs. I loved it.  I went five times a week.  But it was too expensive and not enough cardio (and I'm most certainly not one of those girls who can motivate herself to go for a run...)

If you live near a studio, you must try it...

At the gym, I now have both cardio and stregnth classes at my disposal.  Now it's just a matter of finding the right mix.  What classes are exciting and fun and motivating?  Which ones do you come out of feeling strong and happy?


At this point, spinning and yoga are at the top of my list.  They're on opposite sides of the exercise spectrum, but each class is different enough that they won't get old.

I'm definitely not good enough to do this,
but doesn't it look cool and relaxing(ish?)??

What are your favorite gym classes or work outs?  I would love to hear any suggestions on how to spice it up! Pin It

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Camera Phone Gems

Have you ever looked back at the photos on your phone and laughed?  With inspiration from Jessica of The Lowe Family News who posts her hilarious random phone photos occasionally, I decided to look back and share.

Some are actually sentimental, like the view from the hike back down the mountain after Hubby proposed, or a photo of me at my bachelorette party...















And, let's be honest, some are downright trashy.  Like our margaritas on a night out.  Totally necessary to take a picture to remind us how much we drank, right?  


Or how about this winner of Hubby with his beer helmet playing pool?  I married a classy man.



Oh and then there are the pictures of food.  And we're not talking the nicely plated food at gourmet restaurants.  We're talking chicken fingers.  And pizza.  And french fries.  I'm such a fatty.


Ok there was one classy food picture.  Of cotton candy.  That they served for dessert at a fancy restaurant.  With a candle in it.  Seriously?  Yes.  Totally, randomly awesome.


So what gems are hiding in your camera phone? Pin It

Monday, September 20, 2010

Life Got In The Way

I was going to do some crafting or cooking over the weekend to share with all of my new blog friends today.  I really considered it.  I almost went to Michaels.  But then life got in the way

I was also supposed to go to the grocery store.  And start packing.  Did I mention that we're moving for real?  Yep.  Right up the street.  But this apartment is pet friendly, has two parking spots, central air and heating, a laundry room across the hall from us, and a balcony where we can finally grill again.  Upgrade. 

Instead of packing or crafting or cooking or even making it to the store this weekend, I played.  I went to a birthday party, an open house at Hubby's work (so cool), a football game (Go Bruins!), lunch/shopping with one out of town friend and a phone date with another, and a quick visit to my parents.

Phew.  I'm exhausted.  Sorry for the boring, non-picture, life update post.

But I'm really going to try to make it to the grocery store tonight.  And maybe even cook up something special to share tomorrow.  As long as life doesn't get in the way. Pin It

Friday, September 17, 2010

Wine Favorites

Alrighty, since I officially dubbed it Wine Week, I figured I should finish up the week with some more wine fun.  I took to my apartment to find my favorite wine-related toys and decor, and then to Etsy to find everything that I want to add to my collection.

My personal favorites item is this country chic Wine Cellar sign that perches atop our janky stacked wine fridges from our visit to Peachy Canyon Winery in Paso Robles.  Someday it will point to a real wine cellar in my imaginary mansion..


And we can't have a red without using our gorgeous Crate and Barrel decanter...


Or at least using the Vinturi wine tool...


In terms of toys, we literally would not survive without our Rabbit wine bottle opener..



So then I took to Etsy.  Which was really a bad idea in the first place.  There is already too much of my mental budget that is devoted to the things I want on that website.  And clearly, I found more.

Check out this Wine Lovers Art Print from i shoot nouns


They actually have a bunch of really cute, simple prints that I'm now kind of obsessed with.  Like this Family Tree print, which is making me continuously remind myself that don't have enough wall space.


Here are some adorable "cheers" wine charms from Clinks.  They have about a billion different themed sets of these from Muppets to Starwars to Shakespeare too.


How cool is this?  Greencycledesign has painted old wine bottles in gorgeous prints and designs that you can use for as decor!  So you can have something adorable that also is good for the environment (I may have to try this as a project soon although there's no way they'll look as cute as this...)


And for all of you Keep Calm and Carry On fans, check out this Keep Calm and Drink Wine poster from Keep Calm Shop Loves it.


So what about you?  Do you have any wine-related favorites that you want to share?

Love wine art?  Check out the My Happily Ever After Etsy shop, which features tons of fun wine art! Pin It

it's friday, i'm in love

just a quick aside before i get into the last day of wine-related fun.


i have a hubby who surprises me and takes me out to a nice sushi place on a random weeknight
i have a hubby who always makes me laugh when I'm having a rough day
i have a hubby who gives me a massage because my shoulders have been sore
i have a hubby who takes my car in to get fixed on his day off
i have a hubby who I love more than life itself


it's friday.  i'm in love. Pin It

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Wine Label Wall Art

I think it's safe to say that it's Wine Week in blog land (but what better thing to devote a week to, right?).  Let's jump right in to the other project.

My second (more time intensive) wine art project was to create three pieces of Wine Label Wall Art, made with a collage of wine labels. I had a blast making these over a year ago (which is why I don't have any of the actual *in progress* shots...lo siento) and the pieces now hang in our dining area.


Wine Label Wall Art

You need:
Wine bottles with pretty labels
Dish soap
Warm water bath
Flat razor blade
Wax paper
Heavy books (or other flat heavy objects)
Frame(s)
Poster board (at least as large as your frame)
Glue stick (or your prefered form of adhesive)

Instructions:
1) Remove the labels from the bottle.  Below is my method, but there are numerous other ones if you look online (check out redwinebuzz for more ideas)

Draw a warm water bath in your tub or sink.  Add a quick squeeze of dish soap into the bath, so that there are just a few bubbles. 

Once the bath is ready, dip the wine bottles in it and fill them about 3/4 of the way so they stay below water.  Let them sit in the bath for 15 - 30 minutes

Some of the labels will simply fall off into the water.  If they don't, you must remove them by slowly peeling them off of the bottle, or using the razor blade to gently scratch them off.  You will probably lose some of the labels, depending on how sticky they are.


2) Once labels are removed, put them between two pieces of wax paper (they still may be sticky on the back) and press them between two books.  Let them dry completely (I left mine overnight).

3) Cut the posterboard to match the size of the frame. 


4) Lay out the dried wine labels on the posterboard in the pattern or collage that you would like.  I used a pattern for my two smaller frames and a collage for my larger one.  Be careful, because they may still be sticky.

Some may have drip marks on them...
don't worry it gives them character!

5) Glue the wine labels into place


6) Put the posterboard into the frame


Voila!  A gorgeous piece of art, filled with memories!



Love the look but don't want to schlep through the process?
Wine label wall art is available to purchase in the My Happily Ever After shop
Along with many other fabulous upcycled wine home decor pieces! Pin It

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Cork-hids

I blogged yesterday about our obsession with wine and my desire to make something out of all of the corks and labels we were going through. 

The easiest of the two wine "projects" that I undertook is what we now lovingly refer to as our "cork-hids" (rhymes with "orchids").  I found a large glass vase at Michaels and bought some fake reeds and orchids to put in it.  Then, I filled it with all of the wine corks that we had saved.  It started pretty low, but we add the cork from every bottle that we've drank (we've even taken them from restaurants and have written on the important ones).  I love the way it looks and it's a great reminder of what huge alcoholics we are all of the fun things that we've celebrated together.


Someday, I want to make bulletin boards and trivets with our corks, but we'll wait until the cork-hids are filled up first.

That's 3+ years worth of wine corks...

Tomorrow, I'll post my first real tutorial of the wine label wall art for anyone else who wants to create something beautiful out of their wine memories!

The reeds give some great height to the blank wall

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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Wine-O

Up until my senior year of college, the majority of the wine that I consumed was in a box or a bag. Classy.

Then, Hubby and I went on our first trip to wine country and our worlds changed. We loved wine tasting. We loved wine. Initially, we leaned more towards the juicy white wines and even some super sweet ros├ęs. After a few trips, we began to fall in love with deeper and deeper delicious reds. We've made multiple wine tasting trips to SB and the central coast, and every trip is more relaxing (and expensive) than the last. In between trips, our wine club memberships and our local BevMo are our best friends.

Photos from one of our first tasting trips

Once our love affair with wine began, I decided that I wanted to do something creative with the bottles, labels, and corks that we were aquiring.  I put together two projects (one easy and one more difficult) that I love that I'll share on my blog later this week.  Hopefully it will inspire some creativity in some of my fellow wine lovers as well!


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Friday, September 10, 2010

Hipstamatic Awesomeness

Continuing on the subject of awesome blog finds, the fabulous Kimberly Michelle posted a while back about an awesome iPhone app that she had picked up called Hipstamatic.  Clearly, between my mild obsession with photographs and my undercover love of all things nerdy, I eventually needed to download it.


I got around to it last week and started to play.  It basically takes photos reminiscent of an old school camera and saves them to your iPhone library.  You start with a few different lenses, flashes, and photo types to play around with, and can purchase more as desired.  Each time you change a feature, it changes how the photo turns out.

I started out taking a few photos of our apartment.  I was super impressed at how homey and cool they looked (our apartment isn't actually this good looking)...


Then I took a picture or two of my handsome Hubby playing on his own phone (although he's awesome, he does not actually glow in real life)...


Later, I branched out and tried making something beautiful of our not so beautiful beer pong table post-football game...


And just this morning I took this awesome pic of the cake pop book that my boss ran out to buy after trying my football cake pops last week...


Overall, it's really fun to play with and most of the pictures turned out really well.  Stay tuned for more use of hip photos in future blogs.

On the cake pops note, stay tuned for holiday themed cake pop blogs in the upcoming months as well.  The ideas in that book are effing adorable. Pin It

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Bloggerific Finds

Although I may not be gaining any followers, I feel like I've really been branching out in the blog world.  I've been reading more blogs, trying more projects, and buying wanting to buy more fun homemade goodies.

We've already heard that I'm obsessed with Barn Owl Primitives.  She just put up new fall and Halloween inspired designs.  This is dangerous.  I may need one for every occasion.  I have recently discovered a new blog called Love Stitched who is doing another give away.  Cross your fingers for me.















Then, while flipping through Love Stitched, I found an older give away for the Mama Bird Necklace by Oh Sweet Sadie.  Can someone please help me justify how I can have one of these without being a mama?  Effing. Adorbs.


And then I realized that she has her very own Etsy shop where she makes adorable necklaces like this one that's been on my favorites list for the last few months.



Little Miss Momma had a headband tutorial week last week, and although I'm not really a headband girl, I love this super easy Boho headband that she made.  I would rock this at Coachella.  But, let's be honest, what sold me was that she made it into an adorable wrap bracelet that I would wear every day.













Nina from Momma Go Round did this photo frame project thats totally adorable.  I have so many frames from college that would be adorable if I just refinished them.  And she used the word "fugly" in her blog, so I can't help but love it.


We also know that, thanks to these blogs and others, I've been coveting a purse from Charm Designs, which I did not win in the LMM contest (I am SO unlucky).


And after all of the enjoyment that I've been getting from other blogs, I sit back and wonder, is anyone actually reading this thing?  I would love to hear comments, feedback, ideas, etc. from anyone out there.  Just to know you exist if nothing else (if you even don't).
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