November 23, 2011


Five truckloads, a few bruises, two room dilemmas and one scared kitty later, the fiance and I are officially in the new house. It was a lot of work, but we managed to move all of our possessions in one weekend (Observation: if you want to deter hoarding, make a person pack and move all of their own ish by themselves).

It might be a few more days before I post again since it's super busy around these parts: Unpacking the new place, cleaning the old place, Thanksgiving, Apple Cup, the fiance's parents coming to town, preparing for my cross-country road trip, still no Internet at the new house ... So I wanted to share a glimpse of the early stages of the living room pre boxes and miscellaneous furniture overflow. This picture might be more for my sanity and serve as a reminder it did look semi-normal at one time.

By no means am I a professional interior designer, and the living room and office are proving to be a little challenging. But I like to keep it real around here, so I present to you the unfinished and unstyled living room.

And now it's back to cleaning the old place ... Maid service anyone?!

Sunset from the backyard ... Pardon the leaves.

November 18, 2011

Five for Friday: Gray all the way

It's finally here!!! The fiance and I get the keys to our new casa today at 5 p.m., and I'm beyond ready to move into the space. Thank goodness our landlord has great taste and already painted all of the walls gray. After a few conversations, he and I seem to have the same aesthetic when it comes to interior design. So happy he's not the type of landlord who has an affinity for poop-green paint and shag carpet circa 1973.

Gray is such a versatile "neutral." You can pretty much pair it with any color and style, which is ideal for someone like me who tends to change her mind easily and often. What is your go-to wall color? Happy Weekend!

1. Eclectic + warm

2. Pretty + contemporary

3. Fun + bold

4. Modern + sleek

5. Feminine + classic

Check out past Fridays here.

November 17, 2011

Change of address

Tomorrow, the fiance and I will say peace out to wannabe-porn star, rhino foot-stomping, dog-barking, chain-smoking, cupboard-slamming, grimy neighbors ... You know, all of the joys that come with attached-space living. And if leaving the Jerry Springer Show rejects wasn't relief enough, we get to call an incredible space with loads of potential home.

I'm beyond stoked to start decorating (expect a few mood boards). Our landlord has good taste and already painted the walls gray, updated the appliances and fixtures, installed a pretty backsplash in the kitchen, put hardwoods throughout and painted the front door a gorgeous red. Other highlights include having a dedicated work space (no more office-slash-guest bedroom for this girl) and a fruit tree in the front yard. 

And can we just discuss the effing pool?!?! That basically sold me on the house at first sight. If you've ever been to the AZ, you know a refreshing aquatic source is essential to surviving the sweltering summers. 

I feel so blessed that we found a house that met all of our requirements. And did I mention it's in one of the best neighborhoods in Phoenix?! We looked in the area upon arrival to the AZ, but nothing was available. I'm chalking up hitting the house lottery as good karma for dealing with some grade-A next-door asshats over the past 20 months.

Take a mini-tour of the townhouse before we move. Sketched-out neighbors not included.

November 15, 2011

Guess who's back?!

So apparently I needed an entire month and a half to recover from the shock kick-assness of turning 30. The truth is my absence from around these parts was a combination of traveling, lack of inspiration, taking over as president for our Arizona/Southern Nevada alumni group and searching for a new place of residence. So there's been plenty of fun ish transpiring. 

I'm most stoked about peacing the eff out of the townhouse and moving into our gorgeous HOUSE. Yes, a real grown-up house with a pool!!!! More on that radness tomorrow.

In the meantime, I figured what better way to come back than with a complete blog revamp. I really loved the previous layout, but it was definitely time to freshen up my little corner of the Internet. Practicing on my own blog helps me learn coding and try out ideas for clients while refining my own style. Hopefully you like. 

Check out more of my work in my studio portfolio.

October 1, 2011

30 candles

A little older; somewhat wiser; always young at heart. 

Happy Birthday to me.

September 30, 2011

Five for Friday: Twenty-nine was divine

In a few hours, my Birthday Weekend will commence. The fiance and I will be on a plane to Colorado, ready to kick off my next year. I admit, turning 30 is a little scary. But the plan is to rock it out and embrace the gift of another year.

It's a little hard to leave 29 behind because it was an amazing year. I felt settled in Arizona, started my own business, traveled around the country, saw my family a lot more, started getting healthy and became involved in my college's alumni association. 

It's incredible the difference a year makes. Twenty-eight was full of transition and uncertainty, but it built a foundation for how great 29 was. So here's to 30 being even better and another 365 days of growing, loving, experiencing, laughing and learning.

1. Open for business

I really never intended to start my own studio, but it's been such a joy. Using my design skills in a different medium has been an incredible creative experience. The blog also celebrated its first Birthday this past year.

2. Adventure is calling

Working on a newspaper copy desk didn't allow me the opportunity to travel much, so I'm making up for lost time. Exploring the country (and world) is one of the best things a person can do for themselves, and I was blessed to visit California, Colorado, Connecticut, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Texas and Washington this year, crossing off a few more from my 50 states checklist.

3. Family ties

I traveled home to Washington a few times this year, and even though the trips always seem short, I cherish the moments I do have with my family. Celebrating my nephew's first year of life and being home for Christmas for the first time in five years were some of the highlights of 29.

4.  Workin' on my fitness

One of the best decisions I made this year was getting back in the gym and eating better. I'm not big on the 30-before-30 types of things, but I am proud to say I've lost about 30 pounds just in time to turn 30. Continuing to make my health a priority definitely isn't going to stop at 30.

5. School spirit

Anyone who knows me knows I'm a little obsessed with my college. And through the Washington State University Alumni Association, I've had the opportunity to channel that love into organizing events for our local chapter and beyond and meeting fellow alumni. October will see me represent our Arizona group at the fall meeting in Pullman and attend college fairs here in the AZ to recruit out-of-state students to WSU.

Revisit Fridays of the past here.

September 29, 2011

Fashion to furnishings: Birthday bliss

It's hard to believe it's time to blow out Birthday candles. What's even harder to fathom is I'm turning the Big 3-0 on Saturday.

It's been a low-key Birthday Week, which has been nice, considering it's about to get outta control this weekend. The fiance and I are heading to Denver on Friday for the Great American Beer Festival. Then we're making the short trip to Boulder to watch our college's football team play the University of Colorado on my Birthday (Cougar Football + my Day of Birth = Meant to be).

It hasn't been all chill, though. I kicked off Birthday Week by completing my first mud run. And I'm happy to report I was 35th out of 183 individual female finishers! Yay! We've also attended two really fun D'backs games, including a 10-inning thriller Tuesday night. Today, I'm getting my hair did and treating myself to a mani/pedi.

In lieu of 108 Birthday Week posts, I put together this fun Fashion to furnishings: Birthday edition. I was completely inspired by this gorgeous dress. And even though I'll be rocking game-day gear and not sparkles, this would be my dream 30th Birthday if I was having a traditional party. But seeing my college play in person on the same weekend as one of the biggest brew festivals in the world is a gift made just for me.

Get your party on: dress / cake / garland / confetti / balloons / invite / candles

Delve into the fashion to furnishings archives.

September 28, 2011

I heart art: The Summer Project

Want summer nostalgia without the sunburn and sand in hard-to-reach-places? Then feast your eyes on the dreamy art of Samantha R. Sano. The Dallas-based graphic designer returned to painting this summer and appropriately named her effort The Summer Project. Through the venture, she wanted to "escape the hustle and bustle for a while to take a deep breath, get reinspired before fall, drink lots of iced tea and jump feet first into the deep end."

So if you're not living in Phoenix where it's pretty much summer year-round (Yeah, it's still 100 at the end of September), then you should probably snatch up one of these incredible pieces.

Check out more lust-worthy art here.

September 27, 2011

In the studio: The Notebook

I'm so thrilled to share the latest project from my design studio, a complete revamp for The Notebook. Meaghan, a DC-based interior designer, is inspired by geometric patterns and a color palate consisting of blues, greens and grays, so there were ample jumping off points for a fresh and fun layout. I think we achieved a more cohesive and organized look that will allow readers to navigate the site with ease while incorporating Meaghan's design criteria.

Check out past projects in my portfolio here or on the blog here.

September 26, 2011

A healthier me: Mission accomplished

Sometimes all it takes is getting off the couch. Three months ago, I set a goal of getting healthy. And Saturday, I completed my first mud run, a three-mile course with mud pits, balance beams, hills and a lot of fun.

I felt a great sense of accomplishment, making all those times I forced myself to make a gym appearance worth it. I won't lie. Some days I didn't want to go. And some days I didn't (even though I felt super guilty). But the aches, hours of cardio and pushing myself to the limit culminated in crossing the finish line at the Dirty 6 Mud Run

It was publicly announced yesterday that former WSU and New Orleans Saints football player Steve Gleason has ALS, a terminal disease that damages the nerves that control voluntary muscle movement. The Times-Picayune ran an incredible story on Gleason and one of his quotes has resonated with me.

By no means am I comparing my fitness journey to Gleason's courageous battle. But what he said is so true. I was fearful of putting all of this on the blog because what if I failed?! I was fearful in signing up for the mud run because what if I couldn't complete the training?! Well, I'm here to say that once you let go, anything is possible.

A childhood spent playing in dirt piles and my natural clumsiness combined to lead up to this defining moment.

Find out more about my journey to a healthier me here.

September 23, 2011

Five for Friday + A healthier me: The moment of truth

Well, friends, the time has arrived for my first mud run. Tomorrow morning you can find me at Wild Horse Pass in Chandler getting dirty with a few hundred crazies. This journey to a healthier me is far from finished, but I can't wait to put the hard work of the past few months to the test.

I wanted to share my fave posts from the past few months in this edition of Five for Friday. Future topics will include fun playlists, nutrition and potentially training for a half effin' marathon! Thanks for all of the encouragement I've received via your wonderful comments and emails. They mean so much!

Find out more about my resolve to get fit then delve deeper into the Five for Friday archives.
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