August 30, 2010

Room Redo #2

After finishing our living room redo I couldn't wait to start the next project, our guest room/office. Although it has both a bed and a desk, two essentials, this room has never felt very usable to me. That is all about to change. Even just half way through this project, I already find myself wanting to be in there a lot more.

Here are some shots of how it started. It is very plain and very white.  Hopefully after shots won't be too long to follow as we have some very important guests visiting this weekend!

For sake of full disclosure you should know that the frames above the desk were only put there about two weeks ago because we were having our carpets cleaned and had to get them off of the floor. Bryce is dismayed that I will be moving them already.

August 28, 2010

Let's Talk Brussel Sprouts

I'm not sure how it happened, but somewhere along the line brussel sprouts have gotten a bad name. A really undeserved bad name. Up until six months ago I had never tried one, admittedly because I thought it was going to be bad, but then I came across a recipe online and decided I would give them a whirl. I am so happy I did, they are delicious. Every time I make them, which has become quite often, Bryce's only critique is that I don't make enough. Seriously, they are that good! And they couldn't be easier to make.

Sauteed Brussel Sprouts
Brussel Sprouts (look for the smaller ones, they are the best)
Olive Oil
Parmesan Cheese (optional)

Rinse and drain the brussel sprouts, cut the ends off and cut in half. Toss the sprouts with olive oil to coat, salt and pepper.

In a large non-stick skillet add one tablespoon olive oil and heat over medium heat. As soon as you start to heat the pan begin adding the brussel sprouts, cut side down. Try to work quickly to get them all in the pan at relatively the same time.

Cover the pan and let them cook for 5-10 minutes, DON'T move them around, you want the cut side to get nice and golden brown.


Once they have browned nicely remove the lid and give them a stir, cook another couple of minutes, stirring occasionally. You can stop here and they will be delicious OR you can throw in a handful of Parmesan cheese and cook one more minute until the cheese has melted and they will be out of this world good, that's up to you. Serve and enjoy!

August 26, 2010

No Regrets

School started yesterday at the school I used to work at. All week I couldn't help but think about what I was missing and feeling a little bit of mixed emotion about not starting a new school year - setting up my classroom, getting my new class list, finishing all the little preparations, and comparing summers with fellow teachers. I really enjoy being a teacher and the kids are so darn cute. And then yesterday, as Bryce and I were driving around town in the middle of the day, it hit me, I am SO GLAD I am not at work right now. With the added bonus of seeing this face each day, there isn't anywhere else I would want to be.

August 25, 2010

Living Room: After

Honestly, I love how our living room has turned out. If you remember the before it was not much to look at. We added a splash of color on one wall (Sicilian Sky from Wal-Mart), some shelves with new pictures (Target shelves and some amazing photographs by Erica Cunningham Photography), and traded in our coffee and end tables for something a little more streamlined (chest from Target, side table was a $5 find at a yard sale).

Maybe it is just me, but even after I finish a project like this I can always think of a few things I would want to do differently. However considering a) we are renters b) we don't know how our landlord feels about painting the walls so I figure one was more acceptable than four and c) that chair is so comfortable that I don't care if it isn't "stylish" I am thrilled with the room.

As a side note I should point out that Audrey wasn't placed their for the pictures. Audrey was playing with her dad when I went upstairs to get the camera. When I came down she was sitting on the couch by herself and her dad was walking out to the garage. She was too cute not to let her be part of the "after" pictures.

August 22, 2010

Garden Visitor

It appears this little guy has made our backyard his home. He has been hanging out around our house for the past couple of weeks. I love to look out the kitchen window and watch him fly around.

{August 2010}

 It makes me even more excited to go to Santa Cruz this fall to see the monarch butterfly migration.

August 19, 2010


The last few months of my pregnancy a lot of people would ask if I was nesting. The sum total "nesting" I did consisted of getting up to date on my photo albums and cleaning our silverware drawer (and let's be honest, the only reason I did that was because coffee spilled in there). Maybe I'm supposed to count the many hours I sat on the couch thinking of all the things that needed to be done, but I don't.

Now as I sit here and watch Audrey nap in her swing I can't help but wonder if my nesting instinct kicked in a bit late. I am in full on organize, clean, and redo mode. It has actually been a lot of fun and after seven months of living here it finally feels like this house is becoming our home.

I started with our living room and I am so happy with how it is turning out. Here is a look at the before - can you spell B-O-R-I-N-G! After pictures coming soon.

{Anyone else noticing the dead plant on the end table?
I would hate to tell you how long that has been there.}