Monday, March 30, 2015

Touches of Spring: Home Decor

I'm hesitant to say that Spring has arrived as every time we think we are good, we get another dumping of snow.  But I figure, if I will it, it will come!  As such, last week, before leaving on my weekend getaway, I added a few touches of Spring/Easter to my house. 

Later that day, I had some guys from my past job over and was pleasantly surprised that the three of them commented on how cute and "Easter-y" everything around here looked! 

I really didn't make too many changes, just added a few bunnies, some eggs and some fresh flowers in bright colors.  It's a little more "colorful" in here than I typically go for, but I like the pops for this in-between stage of snow to melty grossness.

So without further ado here are the little touches I've added:

 
The shelf near the front door got the addition of this sweet white, flocked bunny with a burlap scarf.  He was a $3.00 find from Target (which will be gone next week...)  I can't remember if I've posted much or anything about the rustic arrow marquee sign but I snagged it on sale at Michael's around Christmas time.  I was initially planning on painting it cause I wasn't too keen on the rust color but now I really like how it plays off the cooler colors in the entry.



 
Since we won't be having our Easter dinner until later in the month,  I haven't yet decided on my table setting, but in the meantime I am liking this sweet arrangement for every day.  Another sweet target bunny, this one covered in moss sits next to a cake dome cloche with a nest.  I was very surprised the other night when a buddy walked over to a basket on the coffee table and came back with a few eggs to place inside the nest which apparently I'd left empty!!   And we always think men aren't paying attention!!!!
 
I'm also absolutely loving these striped tulips!  So pretty tumbling out of this turquoise vase - very different colors for me, but I really love this here!
 
 




 
The colors on this side table are a little more subdued.  I moved the white owl vase down from the upstairs hall and this is the first time I've actually used him for flowers.  I love the sweet pink tulips peeking out from his head!  I left them long on purpose so as I gradually cut the stems down every few days, they will eventually be the perfect height.   This is also probably the first time you are getting a peek of the French script ottoman. 
 
My sweet best friend/ex boyfriend surprised me with it as a gift for Christmas.  (he's the same one who added the eggs to the nest above).  He's actually quite stylish and really gets my sense of style apparently!  While not something I was in the market for, I really love it.  Plus, it's great or storing things I need to quickly get out of site, but want to have on-hand.
 



 
Since the mantel is mostly taken up by my TV, all I have are the small sections on each side. The only new item is the white faux-bois vase, which I received from my best friend for Christmas.  It's been sitting up here for the past couple months, but looking a little sad and empty.  As such, it was the perfect vessel for these two-toned tulips.  Red is definitely out of my comfort zone, but I just couldn't pass these up!!
 
 

Nothing on this console is new, but I am really loving this blue-tinged glass head over on this side of the room.  It's been getting quite a bit of mixed reviews from my friends however, which of course means it is doing exactly what I want it to - be thought provoking and interesting!  :)



 
This side of the room is a bit more cutesy than the rest of the space but as an Aunite to a 4-year old, I think it's my job to make sure there's some brightly colored stuff that kids will like too.  The Easter tree admittedly, is one of my favorites.  I don't know why I don't decorate this tree for any other holiday...?
(excuse the Apple TV cord visible here - it's new so I was excited to try it out and simply plugged it in without putting it with the rest of the av components.)
 

 
 
This side of the mantel is the same as it always is, but I really love the turquoise vase with peacock feathers!

 
The coffee table got a burst of color in the form of these bright pink carnations. I don't usually go for carnations, but loved the color of these last week. I absolutely love how they look here in the gold vase.  The grey ceramic bunny is so sweet chilling atop a faux Eiffel Tower book.



The other side of the table features the chicken wire basket full of eggs and the HUGE concrete robin.  It's a bit cluttered and I'll admit that I didn't really stage anything, just plopped a few things on the table and then went out of town hahaha.
 
 

This sweet French-looking toss cushion is one of faves, I am trying to find something similar to pair it with.  Have you seen my new Lake sign?  I have to properly hang it - it's a bit high here since I just put it on the nails already in the wall from the previous artwork.
 

 Here's an overall view of the space.  Yes, it's looking a little busy, but I actually kind of like it!  That being said, I'll be making some changes in the next few months:  cleaning the white crud off the inside of the fireplace glass, hunting down a new rug and getting some drapes up there finally!



Of course, since I don't have much space in my kitchen, it's tricky to bring in much d├ęcor, but what's better than gorgeous, brightly-colored fruit!??



Those are just some pics of the bright touches I've added around here.  What have you added around your house to add some Spring touches?

Monday, March 23, 2015

Things I am Liking Right Now

I hit up the mall today for the first time in a long time. I was actually shopping for a birthday gift for a friend, but found a few things that I needed/wanted.

Up first, are my MOST AMAZING, MOST COMFORTABLE JEANS IN THE WORLD!! .   Technically, they are legging jeans, but I bought a pair in blue a while back.  Then I liked them so much, so I went back to the mall and they were sold out, so I bought them in black (which fit a bit differently and tighter).  Then I went to a different mall today and they had them so I bought a few pairs!

If you are built anything like me - short and a little curvy on your bottom half - you might also find these to be absolutely amazing.  I am pretty sure I am going to buy a pair or two of these every 2 weeks until they stop carrying them, because I am terrified they are going to stop carrying them!

 
 
For the last several months, I have been sporting this fragrance and think it is officially my new signature scent since I haven't really worn anything else since!

 
 
I spotted this dress tonight and it reminded me of a top I had.  But I wasn't really shopping for a dress so I passed it by and went along my way.  On my way back to my car, I decided to just try it on to see.... and of course fell in LOVE!!  The color looks great with my light skin.  The cut is super flattering and for $68, I really couldn't pass it up!  I have a wedding to attend in 2 months and am trying to convince myself that neon pink is an appropriate color to wear! 

My favorite part is actually the back, with this pretty slit back!

 
 
 
 
I have been eyeing up this python bag  for a while.  It's currently on sale so I think it's time!
 
 
 
Last year , a few of my platform sandals were ruined eaten so I need to replace a few pairs.  I really love these ones in both colors!
 
 
 
What are you loving lately?  I 've already picked up most of the above and will most likely be getting the rest very soon - now if only the weather will cooperate!
 
 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Masculine Bedroom: A Birthday Gift Idea

Tomorrow is my best friend (who also happens to be my ex-boyfriend...)'s birthday.  I had absolutely NO idea what to get him, until I saw this piece of at the store where I work part-time:

(sorry, they don't sell online, so I can't link)

As an avid outdoorsman who fishes and recently started hunting, this reminded me a lot of him.  The fact that he works in Construction and it's made to look like a pallet, was even better. 
Plus I know he had recently re-decorated his room and figured this would fit right in!
 
For those of you avid DIYers out there who are going to tell me that I could have made this piece myself for practically NOTHING.... I realize that.  Yes, I could very well have fished a pallet out of pile from any nearby construction site,  attempted stencilled a stag head on it and distressed it.   However, I have been working 3 JOBS lately people!!! So for me, it's less about how much the stinkin' thing cost, and more about the fact that I had barely enough time in my life to take these photos and document this, let alone creating an original piece of art!!  :)
So, buying pre-made this time around was the best option - Plus, I used my employee discount so, it's no biggie!
 
 
As I mentioned, he had recently purchased new bedding - red and black buffalo check plaid.  While I haven't actually seem it in person, I believe the picture was similar to something like this (except the white):
 
via this Pinterest page , which I believe he might have purchased at  
 
Last year, he painted his room a warm chocolate brown and added some pine wainscoting similar to and while it's typically not my style, really suits him and the space.
 
 
 
Since he's a guy, he of course has all sorts of  techy/audio visual/video gamey stuff in his room and since the space is pretty small, he needed a way to organize all his things. Luckily, a friend had an old bookshelf from Restoration Hardware bookshelf for which she had taken out and was getting rid of some shelves.  He snatched the wood planks up and simply retrofitted some brackets to the wall to hold his gaming consoles and it worked perfectly under his wall-mounted TV without taking up valuable floor space. 
 
I believe this was the shelving.
 
 
 I have to say, that for a guy, he has pretty good taste and while it's all pretty manly and not my typical blue and grey, it's a pretty cozy space and he's done a good job!

So, what do you think?  Will my stag head pallet artwork be a hit?  Do you think it's a good fit with the items I've described?  I'm also so worried about what I get him as he's pretty stylish and particular.

Thoughts?



Monday, March 9, 2015

Techy Things: Apple TV

When it comes to techy things and gadgets, I am probably one of the last of my friends to get on board with things.  Maybe it's the fact that I no longer have a guy living with me, or possibly I'd just much rather spend my money on clothes, shoes or accessories, I don't know, but that has never been an area that I am one-step ahead on.

I have only had an iphone for a year and a half (and only after plowing through 3 Blackberries in about 8 months....).  I was also pretty resistant to the iPad trend for so long - I had an iPhone and a Laptop at this point, why did I need an iPad?  Then of course, I won one at my Curling Bonspiel and realized how handy they were!  Then of course there was Netflix , anyone who knows me, knows I watch a LOT of television and movies, so it was pretty surprising to most that I didn't even have an account until last summer! 

My biggest issue with it was, as I didn't have any sort of gaming console or a Smart Tv, I had to physically hook up my lap top to the tv with an HDMI cable and get out my wireless mouse and use that to control things if I wanted to watch Netflix while laying in bed.  It was fine, b ut kind of annoying if I am being honest.  Everyone was constantly harping on me to get Apple TV saying that it would be perfect for someone like me.  But of course, I didn't really understand it, and in my head could think of so many other things I could spend $100 on.



Until yesterday, when my Curling team was the first team to be called up for the pick-your-own-prize portion of the prize winning at our Bonspiel.   As I didn't think I was going to be getting a prize (since I was no longer working for the company and wasn't technically playing in the tournament- but was invited to attend the dinner and prizes), I hadn't really spent much time in advance, checking out the prizes.  I had taken a quick peek and seen the small apple box, but really hadn't checked anything out.  So you can imagine my excitement when I realized that I lucked out and the four of us were the first able to check our prizes... I knew exactly what I was wanting and snatched that box up RIGHT AWAY!!

Of course, the first thing I did when I got home was figure things out.  It was the easiest thing ever to get set-up.  I simply plugged it in, attached the HDMI cable and connected it to my account.  No lie, but I spent the whole evening binge-watching Nashville. 

If you haven't tried Apple TV before, I highly recommend it to anyone who, like myself don't have a device like a gaming console or Smart TV that allows you to access your programs. 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

High vs Low: Feather Print Toss Cushions



Now that the weather is starting to warm up, I've been thinking of swapping out the living room toss cushions.  Of course, when I spotted these, I was absolutely in LOVE!!!  Anyone who knows me, knows feathers are my thing!
Of course, the colors of these are exactly perfect for my living room, so these immediately went on my Wish List.
 
 
 
This kidney shaped cushion has a good mix of colors and will be amazing on my sofa or my bed.  Available at Urban Barn  it sells for $29.00
 
This trio of plumes in shades of grey is also from Urban Barn  and is $32.00
 
Yikes!!  Maybe I'm just a cheap-skate but that seems like a lot to spend on a cotton toss-cushion.  But that would mean I'd be spending over $60 for 2 cushions!!!    I mean, I'll probably still be buying them both but I couldn't help but smile when I came across a very similar style for less than half the price!
 
 
At only $12.97 this stunner is from Walmart of all places!    I will definitely be snagging myself a couple of these very soon!
 
 
While this high vs low comparison isn't a huge price difference, I still like to identify any great steals when I find them.
What are your thoughts?  Found any great high vs low deals lately? 

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Change...

To say the last month has been a rough one for me, is a bit of an understatement.  Firstly, I lost my job..  I would have been there almost 6 years this Spring so I am admittedly, a little sad. When it happened, I realized I wasn't sad about losing that particular company, just my job in general.  Plus, every single one of my best friends works there still.   The people were what made that company for me and I am heart-broken that I don't get to say I work with my best friends anymore.  That being said, I've actually kept in touch with a lot of them, even more since I have been gone... so I guess the saying that you try harder when you want something to work is true.

Thankfully, I never let go of the Part-time retail job I've had for just over a year, so they have been wonderful about accommodating me and actually had a girl quit on them the week prior, so had quite a few shifts for me to pick up.  They are also giving me pretty much full-time hours for next week so that's been a big blessing.   Not to mention the contract I have with a private client, that allows me to work from home on my own schedule.  It's a temporary contract but they have said that if need be, my manager will look at speaking to some of the other franchisees to see if they need assistance so that has been ideal.  I do have some interviews lined up, so that's promising but truth be told, there is not much available in my industry and overall, some pretty slim pickings!

As a night owl though, I am not going to lie that the ability to sleep in, has been wonderful for me.  When I get up though, it's a quick breakfast and straight to job searching!  I've been working in the dining room (in lieu of my messy office) and despite the crummy job market right now, have been aiming for 15 - 30 resumes out a day.  It's actually been pretty tough cause of the few available jobs for me, they are either:  paying peanuts, or are looking for someone with far more education than someone applying for these jobs should ever have!  I mean really, if I had 3 degrees, I would be a doctor, NOT working in an office... some people really need to get with it!

Anyhow, I am definitely gonna take my time and try and find the right job and not just settle for a right now job, if I can.  In the meantime, if you need me, you can find me here:
 
 
In other sad news, at Christmas time, I learned I was going to be an auntie again.  Yesterday, I found out that my sweet future niece/nephew went to be an angel instead.  We are obviously pretty broken hearted and while I don't really know what to say to my sister in law to make her feel better, I just want her to know that we are thinking of her and here for them if they need it. 
 
It's times like these that really make me wish my family lived closer.  On that note, I have to work tonight, so I am off to get ready for that, but it's my goal to get together a post of some Interview Appropriate outfits, in honour of my job-searching, so look for that this week!!