Thursday, June 30, 2011

New Wall Art

I thought I might share some of the latest artwork that I've pulled together around the condo.  I'm always on the prowl for a good little grouping of knickknacks or a cute frame arrangement, so here are some of my latest ones:

Peacock feathers in a floating frame.  I recently realized that all the colors I'm drawn to the most, green, teal, and purple, and particularly the shades I like most, are all very peacock-esque.  I realized this last time I was in LA and kept running into these gorgeous peacocks:
Hmm this reminds me, I forgot to print this for my gallery wall...
So since then, I've been having a little love affair with the feathers.  I ran accross two really awesome feathers at Joann Fabric's one day and stuck them in a vase, and then started looking for more.  For $3, I was able to get a pack of 10 giant feathers from Amazon and I put four of them in a floating frame, and the rest in a vase with my original feathers.  It's since been moved because this particular corner wasn't really light enough to enjoy the feathers most of the time.  So now it's been hung next to my tv.

Another piece I framed was from a magazine.  I found an article that started with the letter "T"  (as in Tim!) and so I scanned it, enlarged it, made it extra black and white, and printed it out.  I am absolutely in love the final result:

I really feel like it pulls together the whole arrangement there, and I may or may not stop and drool every time I walk by.  In fact, I was so excited by this piece that my co-worker made this for me that I hung in our bedroom:

Grow old with me, the best is yet to be
Isn't that cute?  Last, I've finished the wall of frames in the game room.  I added four more frames to really fill out the wall and each frame contains some sort of black and white print, mostly from movies.  We've got a photo from Up, The Notebook, and three from Breakfast at Tiffany's, along with two pictures of us and a signed Seahawks t-shirt (this is Tim's game room, after all).

This picture is our favorite from our trip to Cinque Terre, turned black and white:


For reference, here's the original picture:

30 Day Song Challenge- Day Seventeen

I decided to skip day 16 because it bored me so here's to 17!

Day 17 - a song that you hear often on the radio

Cee Le Green - F*ck You

Ok, I actually am usually hearing "forget you" but the original version really packs a much better punch, don't you think?  Even though this song is close to a year old, I still hear it constantly, and not just on the radio!

"I see you drivin round town with a girl I love and I'm like..."

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Crown Molding

Tim and I have been working on our latest home improvement project and are just about done: crown molding in our living room!  We still need to eventually buy some more and hang it up in our hallway and entry wall, but we've got the rest of the living room done and love it.  It was a hefty project that required a lot of holding-the-molding-still-while-the-other-guy-hammers and a lot of carefully placed liquid nails that actually was more like thought-we-used-enough-but-not-too-much-but-was-actually-too-much-and-now-we-get-to-scrub-it-off-the-walls.  But all in all, it wasn't nearly as hard as I was expecting it to be.  I got a couple of "you're putting up crown molding YOURSELF?" that made me a little nervous, but it turned out I read enough how-to's to figure it out on the cheap.  And I'm not going to lie, once I discovered the awesomeness that is caulk, I got a huge sigh of relief, as you'll see below!

Here's the first piece we put up:

Followed by the next piece and a caulked up corner:
Another corner:
I was nervous to use caulk at first because A. I've never used it before and B. I was afraid it would be messy and ugly.  I was very wrong!  It was a cinch to use, just squeeze it where ever you want, smooth it out, or let it dry and then sand.  Soooo easy and it looks amazing.  It made all the little cracks and corners fill in perfectly and you can't even tell it's there.

Now for some troubles that we had- outside corners.  These are a lot more difficult to create because the peices have to fit together much tighter, and the caulk is harder to mold when filling in the cracks.  I don't have after pictures for the below corners, but here's what they look like before:

Now, the corner in the top picture wasn't as bad- just filled it in, and it was practically good as new.  There is a little more "sanding" I plan to do to get it completely molded.  However, in the bottom picture, you can see how one of the pieces we mounted ended up being too short and we were left with a big crack.. We didn't now how to fill it in and with our dinner party hours away, I ended up whittling a little piece of leftover molding to take up most of the empty space and then used caulk to try to fill it in.  We actually ran out of caulk in the middle of this part and have yet to run out for more, but as soon as we do I'll post after pictures.  

Monday, June 27, 2011

Goat Lake Hike

I was very excited to do this hike; I had read about it last summer and never found the time or nice enough weather to go!  But this weekend Lindsey and I made the two hour drive up to the trailhead and headed up for Goat Lake.  This particular lake was featured on the cover of the official Washington map, so you can imagine how gorgeous it is. 

The trail followed along a roaring river for a majority of the time.  There were actually two paths we could have taken in the first half, and we followed the lower trail because it was supposed to be a little more interesting.  We were both surprised at how huge, fast, and loud the river was (that's what she said!)

The lake pours into a giant waterfall, which in turn, is the huge rapid river we were walking along earlier.  There's a little side path to view the waterfall before you reach the lake, and there was a nice mist to cool us down.  Also, the waterfall was awesome because it was so big and loud.  This picture doesn't do it justice! 

Below, we found the top of the waterfall and can spot the lake in the distance, so we tried our best at looking exhasted but just look sad :):

And then, finally, the breathtaking view:

Enjoying lunch on the lake edge
Gorgeous, no?  It was such a cute little jewel in the middle of the mountains.  Very serene and quiet and just very lovely.  The hike itself was fairly easy as well.  It's about 11 miles roundtrip, but it's only about 1400 miles of elevation gain throughout the 5 miles out.  Easy to keep the gibber gabber going between us!
My favorite part of the hike was our excitement at seeing some toilets at the end of the trail, only to see this ^.  I would have gone for it but there was a group of people standing about 10 yards away with a clear view, so I decided to wait until we made our way back to the trail head.

Dinner Party!

Hello blog readers!  I hope everyone had a great weekend!  Tim and I hosted a dinner party for our parents on Saturday and then I went on a nice loooong hike with a friend on Sunday to Goat Lake (pictures to follow!).

For our vegan dinner party, we (I) made a greek salad followed by pasta primovera and garlic bread, and then individual blackberry/peach cobblers for desert.  I unfortunately was so busy chopping and cooking that I forgot to take any pictures of the food, but I got a few snapshots of the table:


The last picture is the little bar station we set up to make lemon drops, using our skills learned in a bartending class we took a few months ago.  Lots of fun!  I was glad to finally use all the wedding presents we received almost two years ago :)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Quinoa with Grilled Vegetables and Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

Here's a nice, fresh meal that's perfect for summer.  

Assortment of fresh vegetables for grilling (I used red bell peppers, yellow squash, spinach, and asparagus, but you can throw in anything and everything that you've got!)
1 jar roasted red peppers
1/3 c vegetable broth
1 large garlic clove, chopped
3 tablespoons fresh chopped herbs
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

 Boil water for quinoa; reduce to a simmer and cover.  Meanwhile, chop vegetables for grilling.  Cook vegetables under tender on either a grill or grill pan.

Combine roasted red peppers, broth, garlic, herbs, and vinegar in a food processor or blender.  Puree under smooth.   
 Pour sauce over vegetables and quinoa, and feast!  Yum!

Friday, June 24, 2011

30 Day Song Challenge- Day Fifteen

Day 15 - a song that describes you

Moon River- by Audrey Hepburn or Andy Williams.  One of my favorite songs, from one of my favorite movies :)

(Cute montage on this video too ^)

Personally, I prefer Andy's rendition:

Every time I hear this song, memories of the first time I saw Breakfast at Tiffany's pop into my head, and then I think about the first time I watched it with Tim and he said that Holly GoLightly reminded him of me (although, I'm fairly certain he was referring to her relentless chatter).

Oh For the Love of Succulents!

I'm having a love affair with succulents this week.  On a recent trip to Home Depot, Tim and I purchased a pretty blue pot and a thing of succulents.  I can't believe I forgot to take a picture, but they look similar to this:

We have ours in a baby blue pot
 I'm just in love with them!  I keep seeing these plants popping up all over the bloggasphere and I can see why.  They're so easy to care for and so gorgeous.  Look at these awesome succulent ideas:

Awesome vertical wall
They're so versatile; you could really do almost any design you want with them.  PS- check out this beautiful painting:

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Photo Gallery Makeover!

There's been so much going on during the last month I'd like to blog about- the last two weeks have been crazy, on top of Europe.  So I finally thought I might have five minutes to upload some pictures, and my laptop cord died so now I'm stuck waiting for a new one before I can share them with the world! 

Up my sleeve is an upcoming dinner party that Tim and I are throwing for our parents this weekend.  I've taken this opportunity to really tackle a bunch of those little home improvement projects that you never get around to, like cleaning out a bunch of junk piles, installing crown molding in our living room (more on that later), and getting new pictures printed for our gallery! 

You may remember that last year I re-did our entry hall and turned it into my personal gallery:

Well it still looks that like, except with new paint.  And since all those photos were taken within a few months of each other over a year ago, I'm finally getting around to printing a few new ones.  I waited until after Europe so that I would have a plethora of images to choose from, because I only have a couple good shots that I've taken within the last year that I like.  I was hoping I would have been able to get a couple good hikes in for more photo ops as well, but what are you gonna do?

The pictures have been a huge challenge since my laptop cord died.  My mom put them all on cd's for me so I can at least look at them other places but it's not like I have a ton of time on other computers in order to sort through 2000 photos and narrow them down to ten prints (and probably less because there are ones on the wall I'm not ready to part with).  I have to give props to my mom because she graciously uploaded all the photos I thought I might like to costco photo so that I could narrow them down even further.  And while I've gotten it down to around 30 prints, I have some work to do before tomorrow!   

More to come soon on both my big adventure oversees and the latest home improvement projects!

30 Day Song Challenge- Day Fourteen

Day 14 - a song that no one would expect you to love

Hmm this is a hard one, because I think most of my friends have come to expect that I like almost everything except country.  In fact, I can't really think of one to be honest, so I'm just going to give you a song that I love- Mr Blue Sky by Electric Light Orchastra (would have been perfect for the first day of summer when it was sunny out, but I send this one out to the rain and hope it gets the message)

Oh, I just thought of one- I bet people wouldn't expect me to love Eminem, so here's "Not Afraid" by him:

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

30 Day Song Challenge- Day Thirteen

Day 13- a song that is a guity pleasure

I wouldn't exactly call this a guilty pleasure because it's so awesome...

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

My Future Destinations

Now that I'm back fresh from a trip to Europe, I'm already thinking, where should I go on my next big adventure?  I'm hoping that in the fall of 2012, Tim and I will be ready to jet set to another big destination.  The only trouble is (besides saving all our pennies!) is picking which of the wonderful places of the world I want to see next!  I've narrowed it down to six choices, and I thought I'd make a little photo collage to help pick.

*Yes I know I'm entirely too obsessive for already planning a trip approximately 15 months away!  What can I say?

Macchu Piccu/Incan Trail, Peru:
We'd spend a day or four days hiking up to Macchu Piccu and see some wicked sweet Incan ruins, maybe do some rafting, horseback riding, and other South American adventures.

Buenos Aires, Argentina
As a vegan, it would be hard to enjoy one of Buenos Aires famous delicacies, their steak, but I'd love to do some tango dancing and beach-goin

We'd visit the Cliffs of Moher, explore some castles, drink some Guinness, eat a lot of potatoes, and drive around the countryside.

Yeah, I don't think I need any words....I mean look at those pictures.  I'd be pretty much sitting there with my mouth hanging open in unrelentless awe.

Oh Thailand.  My favorite kind of food.  Mecca for rock climbing.  Gorgeous temples, elephant rides, snorkeling, tattoos, hiking, and beautiful beaches.

Bali, Indonesia More amazingness.  "That smells like heaven in a bowl"  I can't just see Tim and I biking down a winding road, picking up some produce in my straw basket, going for a swim...