Monday, July 5, 2010

Front-yard Progress

For the next few posts, I'd like to share with you a few photos and updates of the front and back yards of our home.

We purchased our home on 7/11/2008, almost 2 years ago. I love our house, even though there are tons of things I'd love to change about our house.

One of our house's best attribute is the front-yard.

Here is a chronological view of the beauty:
Frontyard Progress

As you can see, it was a bit of a jungle when we bought it. Slowly, but surely we have taken control over the yard.

Do you like what we've done so far?


Sunday, June 13, 2010

Vacation in Wilmington, NC

This past week the hubby and I went to Wilmington for a little R&R. It was so great. We stayed at the Hilton Riverside in downtown Wilmington, this was our view:


We spent all our days at the beach in Wrightsville, and our evenings in Wilmington. We made sure to have ice-cream twice, because you have to have ice-cream when you are in Wilmington, it's the law. The place with the best ice-cream in town is called Kilwin's, make sure to try Georgia Peach, it's divine.

Here are more pics (taken with my new camera) from our little vacation:




These were all taken on the riverside in downtown Wilmington. The following pictures were taken while walking around the cute streets with beautiful houses:





As much as I would love to take credit for these awesome pics, most of them (if not all) were taken by the very-talented hubby.

This was our lame first attempt at using the timer:


If you didn't know, Wilmington has a special place in our hearts, this is where Matt proposed to me a little over 6 years ago.


Monday, May 31, 2010

I Have a Camera!

I know it's been forever, I am not even going to try to explain. Let's all just be happy that I am here, and go from there.

While I was out, I made a huge purchase: a grown-up camera for my birthday (May 3). After gift cards, and monetary gifts, I ended up paying a total of $150 for a Nikon D3000. What a steal! Oh, that is also counting an 8GB memory card.

My first pictures with the new camera were of my wonderful pup, hope you enjoy them:

I have a lot learn with the my new toy, hopefully there will be lots more pictures soon.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

My New Clothing Crush

Design Sponge has introduced me to an amazing clothing website. I feel an obligation to share this with you: Mod Cloth.

I hope you take the time to look around this beautiful site, and just to get you started, here are some of my favorites:

For a beautiful summer night wedding, I would wear...

The perfect work outfit, that I could travel in...

And the perfect outfit to enjoy an outdoor concert with my hub and pup...

I love this website!


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Happy 5 Years to US

Friday, March 19th was our 5 year anniversary. To celebrate it we went to dinner at my favorite restaurant in Raleigh, Second Empire.

It was my second time there, but I can honestly say that it is, in my opinion, the best restaurant in Raleigh. We ate downstairs at the Tavern, which has a much warmer atmosphere than upstairs, at the main restaurant. I wore my new Free People dress, which I don't have a picture of, but I would love to show you the new dress I want from Free People: My New Free People Obsession.

An evening with great food (did I mention that I had the best creme brule for dessert?), a great dress, and a wonderful hubby - perfect way to celebrate the wonderful 5 years we've had.


Sunday, March 14, 2010

Julie Powell & Me

Last weekend I watched the movie Julie & Julia with Meryl Streep and Amy Adams. I have to admit that I enjoyed the movie a lot more than I expected. I mean, I knew I was going to love all the cooking, baking, and the talking about cooking and baking. What I didn't know, was that I was going to really dive into this movie, and actually get something out of it, besides hunger.

While watching Amy Adams portray Julie Powell, I found myself comparing my life to hers. Now, don't get me wrong, I am not going to start cooking like a mad woman. I related with her on the topic of never finishing anything. It is time to admit, that like Julie Powell, I am a starter, not a finisher. And like her, I don't like this about myself, actually, I kind of despise it. It is so easy to get really excited about a new idea, a new project, a new challenge, a new goal, and dive into it wholeheartedly, until the next thing comes along that really excites me. As you can probably imagine, it is not healthy to be this way.

By the end of the movie, I was balling, not because it was so cute that Julie Powell cooked a duck, or that Julia Child finished her book. But I was crying because I was so proud of Julie, for actually finishing it! I can't explain to you how proud I was of her, and as stupid as this sounds, I think I was so proud of her because deep down I knew that I wouldn't have finished it.

I am 27 years old (28 in 50 days) and I think it's about time I try to change this fact about me. So, I started to think about all things I've started lately that I have not finished:

  • This blog is a great example. My goal, when I started was to blog once a week, sadly, it's been more like once a month.
  • Thousands of projects around the house:
    • kitchen backsplash
    • painting the trim in various rooms
    • painting doors
    • replacing door knobs
    • and tons more...
  • Jewelry making
  • Drawing and painting 
  • Applying to graduate school
  • Exercising
  • And tons more...
The list could go on forever, but I'll stop now so not to bore you. So for now on, I am going to truly try to finish things I start. From small things like reading a book, to huge things like graduate school.

I can tell you that since I saw the movie, I have successfully started an exercise plan, and have kept up with it for 8 days - which is pretty major for me! The goal is to run a 5k in 50 days (yes, on my birthday). Wish me luck!

Also, I will be able to keep you guys posted on more accomplishments since I will go back to the original goal of posting a weekly blog entry. And since I work better with goals, here it is: My goal with this blog is to post at least once a week for the next 7 months. Since there are 42 weeks left in 2010, I will have at least 42 posts by December 31, 2010.

I have fun a year a head of me, and I'm glad that I will be able to share it with someone out there (whoever reads this).

Have a great week!


PS: Did I mention that I lost my camera? So sad.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

I'm still Alive!

I apologize for not writing for so long, honestly, life has gotten really crazy. But, here I am, over a month later, writing the post I promised... my New Year's Resolution.

I know it is a little late to be talking about New Year's, but this way, I can also talk about the progress of my resolutions, and not just the intention.

So here we go:

  1. No more Caffeine: You all ready knew about this one, if you read the No Caffeine = Massive Headaches post back in December. Amazingly, I have not had any Starbucks since Christmas, I'm doing good so far. Now, the other source of my caffeine habit, this one I have visited once, twice, well ok, 3 times since I officially quit - Coke just tastes so good. But hey, 3 cokes in 2 months, that's pretty good if you ask me.
  2. Eating more home cooked meals: I have allowed myself one lunch a week that is not from home, and the hubby and I go out to eat once week together. That's been going well so far, but I can tell that I am starting to get sick of grocery shopping and planning my meals every weekend. 
  3. Maintaining my house cleaner: In my house growing up, every Saturday was cleaning day, I was only allowed to go play with my friends, after the entire house was spotless clean. When I mean cleaning, I mean sweeping, mopping, dusting, etc., not the normal chores, like dishwashing, putting clothes away, etc. I have maintained this cleaning process ever since I've had my own house, but I think it is time to adopt a different format. With my hubby, my puppy, and me being so messy, the house has been getting too dirty by Wednesday that waiting until Saturday just doesn't make sense anymore. So, for the new year, I have adopted a new system: daily chores. Theoretically, this is going well, but I'll have to update you on this one after I actually take the time to sit down and create the chore schedule ;o)
  4. Exercise: Notice how I just wrote exercise, not exercise "more". That's exactly what I mean, get off my butt and start some form of exercising routine. This, sadly, has not happened yet.
  5. Accomplish at least 3 major projects in the house, these can consist of any/all of the following:
    • Lay sod on the front yard
    • Lay sod on the back yard
    • Build the gravel patio in the front yard
    • Gutters on the front and back of the house
    • Wooden floors in the kitchen and laundry
    • Window bench for the breakfast nook
    • Hardwood on the stairs
    • Hardwood in the master bedroom
    • New sink for the kitchen
That's it folks, my New Year's Resolution for 2010. I'll do a mid year update in July to let you know how things are going.

Hope you are doing better than me at your list.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Home Cooked Meals and Rectangles

Matt and I have been trying to eat home more often this year, like we did right after we came back from Brazil (2007). Let's call it our New Year's resolution: Eat home cooked meals as often as possible.

We have been really good with keeping up this new trend... I know today is only the 12th, so what? But, I have to admit, the hardest thing about this plan is planning the meals. Sitting down on Sunday and coming up with some sort of plan for the week, this way we can be sure to have all the ingredients we need to create goodness, is not easy.

This Sunday, I decided to add a wild card recipe to the mix, and boy am I glad I did? During one of my get-lost-in-time-blog-reading-escapades, I ran across this Roasted Vegetable Pesto Pizza from Aggie's Kitchen. I never order veggie pizzas at restaurants, and honestly I don't like pesto, but for some reason this pizza just jumped out at me. Look at this picture:

Don't you want to eat this pizza now?

Well, I was brave, and so was Matt - keep in mind he loves pesto, so there wasn't much convincing. So after not too long spent in the kitchen, voila:

Things you might notice about this picture:

  • My pizza is a rectangle - that is correct, no round pizzas in this house. Didn't you know that rectangular food tastes so much better than round? It's the new thing... ok, I don't have a round stone.
  • Only half of the pizza is being photographed - the other half is in our tummies. Sorry, I couldn't wait to take the picture, it was so good, I had to eat it right away.
  • My culinary picture taking skills are nowhere near Ms Aggie's, but at least I tried.
As you can see, the week is going well so far, we'll see how the rest of the year goes.

On my next post I will share the rest of my New Year's resolutions. Stay tuned.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

Decade Recap

I have a slight addiction to blog reading. I can sit in front of a computer for hours, just going from one blog to the next. It’s actually rather therapeutic, and inspiring. The reason why I am telling you this, is because most, if not all, the blogs I’ve been reading lately are doing some sort of year recap.  With all this reminiscing in mind, I decided that it was time for my recap blog entry, but instead of looking back at 2009, I want to look back at the ’00 decade.

It was a rather important decade for me; some would even say that it was the most monumental decade I’ve lived – keeping in mind that I am about go into my 3rd.  Here is a short review, in somewhat of a chronological order:
  • I was given a second chance by everyone, and moved back to the US.
  • I made the decision to change my life around, and go back to God.
  • I got a tattoo.
  • Graduated from High School – honestly, I never thought it would happen.
  • Graduated from College – Whoa! Much less this one!
  • I met and married the love of my life – He’s freaking awesome!
  • Became part of great families.
  • Got a brother and two sisters – which honestly, I suck at communicating with them, but hopefully, I’ll get better.
  • Moved a lot!
  • Saw and hiked the Grand Canyon.
  • Became an aunt 4 times.
  • Went to Europe twice.
  • Went to Brazil twice.
  • Made great friends.
  • Bought a house!
  • Got a dog. She’s the cutest pup in the world!
  • Had great jobs – and still do.
  • Discovered hidden talents.
  • Got to know myself better.

There it is, a short list of my last decade. It was a great decade, I had a blast! Hope you did too.