Friday, November 9, 2012

The Living Room

Next up in the house tour is the family room.
When I got here, this room was looking...bare. I guess that would be the nice word for it. Since Kenny was living by himself, he had all he needed. A couch, a TV, and a TV tray which holds his laptop and acts as a table when he wants to eat in front of the TV. I mean, what else do you need in life? Here are the before pictures.

The to do list for the living room looked like this:
Living Room
- get a recliner or love seat
- bookshelves for dvds
- Curtains
- Shelves for above couch/picture frames

First order of business, the love seat/recliner debate. Kenny was thinking he may want a recliner to add to "manliness." Upon further discussion, aka me listing reasons for a love seat, we went with a love seat. Because he already has a recliner (the sofa reclines), a love seat provides more room for more people to sit, and would look better in the space we needed. With that solved, we went over to Rooms to Go where we found a loveseat and coffee table. The coffee table was an almost perfect match for the TV stand we had, so it wasn't a hard sell.

Next up were the bookshelves for our dvd collection. Little known fact, I love movies. Kenny also has a collection of all the "guy" movies you would want to watch. But I have all the romantic comedies, Disney princesses and super hero movies you could ever want. So we needed enough space for all of the ones we have, plus room for our collection to grow. We (I) found some that we liked at Target, and added them to our massive furniture order we made. With a coupon + sale, they ended up only being $60 a bookshelf, which wasn't bad. And they matched the TV stand also, so win/win.
Curtains were purchased at Target (shocking, I know).

The shelves for above the couch are from Ikea. The nearest Ikea is in Orlando, which is 2 hours from here. I needed picture frames for my picture wall going up the stairs. So I talked my husband into making the 2 hour drive for them. We also made a massive return to Macy's (it's the closest one to us), went to Golf Galaxy and Chipotle. So it wasn't that bad of a day for him. I also got picture frames to go on the shelves at Ikea. We have a picture of his side of the family, my side of the family, all his groomsmen (who happen to be his BFF's/brothers) and then the picture from our photobooth with all my bridesmaids + Pop. We also have a picture of Glory (Kenny's dog, and the love of his life) since she couldn't make it to our wedding. I also got a Celtic cross made from Peet when we were in Ireland.

Our coffee table holds a bowl with all of the remotes/controllers, as well as our photobooth guestbook and all the photobooks I've made from previous years. I'm still working on our wedding photobook as well as the 2012 one, but those will be on the coffee table as soon as they're finished.

So the to do list is complete. And here are the after pictures:

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Chocolate, Chocolate and More Chocolate

This just sounds like heaven right? It's actually a post about attending my friends' wedding in Hershey, PA. Which was really fun and full of chocolatey delights.

I ended up flying up to VA on Wednesday morning. The Nationals (my favorite baseball team) made it into the playoffs. My dad, being a season ticket holder, had tickets to every playoff game. So I happened to be able to make it to both games on Wednesday and Thursday...what a lucky coincidence.

On Friday afternoon, Susan, Sarah and I loaded into my rental car and drove up to Hershey. Northern Virginia traffic standard wise, we made it in pretty good time. We were able to get there right as the "Smores and Beer" portion of the night was starting. I got to catch up with friends that I haven't seen in awhile, and got to eat s'mores. Could it get any better?

All of the VT people ended up renting a cottage for the weekend. It was an awesome space with 4 bedrooms, and on site of the wedding/reception. Paul  (the groom) crashed with us on Friday night, with strict instructions from his bride to make sure he was in bed by 2 and no Jaegar shots. We were able to comply with all her rules :)

On Saturday, we got up and headed out to breakfast. We tried to go to The Hershey Pantry, but that was an hour long wait - so we ended up finding a little roadside place that was actually pretty good. After breakfast, we headed back to the cottage to watch the VT game. And by watch, I mean squint at people's phone screens cause it wasn't on TV in that area. But was on TV was Paul and Lauri's Wedding...they fancy.
Paul with the TV
The girls started getting ready with about 2 hours to go before the ceremony started. In typical guy fashion, they started getting ready about 30 minutes before.
All the VT Girls
The ceremony was held at the Hershey Gardens, which were absolutely goregous. Everything about the ceremony was amazing, the weather was good (a little chilly) but good nonetheless. The guys looked handsome and Lauri was a stunning bride.
Paul, waiting for Lauri.
Here comes the (beautiful) bride!
You may kiss the bride
Mr. & Mrs. Needleman
Pretty programs
After the ceremony, we made the short trip back up to the hotel for cocktail hour.
Here are Susan & Sarah, being creepsters.
The food at cocktail hour was awesome, and more importantly they had chocolate martini's with Hershey kisses in the bottom.
Sarah was very excited to add a new Coozie to her collection.
We've known each other/Paul for 7.5 years. So weird we're going to each other's weddings now.
Cocktail hour candids. Minus Sarah, who caught me, and threw up the peace sign.
Awesome cocktail hour space.
Paul's Hokie friends :)

Me and Susan
Allison and Me, college roommates.
Some of my favorite ladies.

After the cocktail hour, we moved into the reception room. Which, magically, smelled like chocolate.
Their stationary was amazing.
After the introductions, Paul's family (who are Jewish) did the traditional Hava Nagila with Paul and Lauri. Paul kept trying to hold Lauri's hand while they were in the air, she was having nothing to do with that. She was clinging to the chair for dear life the entire time.
After that and dinner, it was dancing time. They had a live band which was pretty awesome. Needless to say, we all got our groove on.
Everyone had a Hershey's bar waiting for them at their seat, and there was a candy bar where you could pack your bag full of Hershey candy. Susan hit the chocolate wall.
The late night party moved to the bar downstairs...we took our leave when someone was trying to retrieve their shoes from the fireplace (you read that right), and ended up falling off the chair she was standing on. We took that as our exit cue.
The next morning, Paul and Lauri arranged for all of us to be able to have brunch at the hotel. It was a nice way to end the weekend and send those 2 off before their European honeymoon.

I'm so thankful to have the friendships that have lasted through the years. And now that we're becoming "real" adults, its nice to have those people around to celebrate with.

Congratulations Paul & Lauri!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Birthday Shenanigans

I've been traveling, we've had house guests and work has been busy. Those are my excuses, sorry!

Anyways, on October 4th, Kenny turned 29. What an old man! That was a Thursday night, so we went out to dinner with Joey & Amanda (some of our Jax BFF's). We went to Bistro Aix, which I had just recently tried when Susan came to visit. Kenny got the steak (and anyone who knows Kenny knows this isn't shocking), and I got the Mussels for an appetizer and the Risotto for dinner. Nice, quiet celebration and home in time for the old man's bedtime ;)
Self timer shot on Kenny's birthday
The next day Richie and Christy arrived for their long weekend visit. It was pretty awesome that Kenny's birthday was Thursday, Richie's was Monday and Columbus day happened to fall also on the Monday so we could take advantage of the long weekend.

Kenny was able to get off work in time so we could both go pick them up from the airport. As soon as they got in the car, we discussed how we were all hungry and wanted lunch. (Not shocking if you know us well at all). After some debate, we decided on Moe's. And yes, Richie does hate Mexican food. And yes, he did let us know about it from the moment the decision was made, all the way through lunch and out to the car.

The rest of the day was spent lounging around, hanging out and also watching "Homeland." It's a show on Shotime, and if you haven't watched it, you should. It's seriously awesome.

That night I made Chicken Parmesan, another Kenny favorite. And we had birthday cake to celebrate Kenny's birthday since Richie and Christy couldn't be here on the actual day. Here's Kenny's cake. You know, the "normal" kind of cake. AKA Yellow cake with Chocolate Frosting.
Saturday during the day was a chill day. We knew we had to leave mid-afternoon to head to Orlando, so we just hung out for the first part of the day.

Orlando is about a 2 hour drive from Jacksonville. Universal Studios was doing their Halloween Horror Nights, so we decided to go there. Well, Christy wasn't that excited cause she gets scared really easily. I do too as a matter of fact, but I'm the type of person to get scared, scream my face off and then laugh to the point of snorting cause I think it's so fun. Richie loves going to haunted houses with me because I look like a real idiot but then can laugh about it later.

So we go there with enough time to eat outside of the park and the "Whopper Bar" aka a Burger King. And then we got in line to get in. No lie, we were in the entrance line for 45 minutes. We should've taken that as an Omen for the rest of the night.
Waiting to go in
After we got in, we made our way to a haunted house. And immediately saw the line was 60 minutes long. We nixed that one and decided to prioritize. Kenny is a huge fan of "The Walking Dead" the TV show, and they had a haunted house that was dedicated to it. So, we made our way to that...after waiting in a 70 (!) minute line, we got to go through it. It was actually pretty cool (you know, minus the fact that I was scared). It followed the plot of the TV show and you got to walk through the different sets and the different zombies that the characters had encountered were there too.

After that haunted house, we waited in the line another 60 minutes to go on the roller coaster. Which was an awesome ride and longer than 2 seconds, thank goodness. After that, we had time for 1 show.

So, all in all, a fun time. But we learned our lesson. If we go, it will be on a Sunday night when hopefully the crowds aren't as large. You only have 7 hours to do everything in the park and that's kind of hard when you're spending at least 60 minutes in line for everything. We ended up leaving around 1 in the morning, and heading back to Jacksonville.
Richie with the creepy creepy thing.
The next day was Football Sunday. In which the boys sat around watching football. Christy and I amused ourselves by shopping and watching movies upstairs.

The next day was Richie's birthday, so he got to choose what he wanted to do. He and Christy had some money left over for Dave & Buster's, so we headed over there first.
The guys, racing.
And playing Guitar Hero
We played a 4 way game of air hockey. Christy was the first to get knocked out (that's why she could take this picture). It ended up coming down to me and Kenny. I let him win, of course ;)
We also did the "Gene Machine." Where you take of picture of both of you, you choose the sex you want your baby to be and it spits out a picture of what your kid will look like. Kenny of course made us choose boy. He is determined we won't have any girls. Which, makes me think we'll have 2.

This baby is relatively cute. So, it's now hanging up in our house, waiting for the real baby, to see if it was right.
The future Baby Prindle.
After Dave & Buster's, we headed over to a Seafood Restaurant for Richie's birthday. He wanted crab legs as his birthday meal, I had offered to make them, but Kenny talked us in to going out. We ended up trying Alligator (pictured below) and it was good, tasted just like chicken. I got the Seafood sampler and it was AMAZING. So, definitely a go back to place.
Alligator Bites
After dinner, we came back to the house for Richie's birthday cake. Funfetti with funfetti icing, of course. Richie helped us sing Happy Birthday to him.

The next day, Richie and Christy had to leave :( It was sad seeing them go but it was so nice having them here! Can't wait for their next visit :)

Friday, October 5, 2012

Dining Room

I use the term "dining room" very loosely. Its a little cubby right off the kitchen, across from the foyer. It's the barrier between the kitchen and the living room. And it just happens to have a chandelier...

Here's what it looked like before. The picture on the left is from the realtor, and what it looks like with nothing in it. The picture on the right is what it looked like right after I moved in. And yes, those are our wedding thank you notes on the table.
Our to do list was:
- wine storage
- china hutch

Now, as you can see there really isn't much for these things. Also, we have a dining room table and china hutch waiting for us at my parent's house. They were my grandma's and are those really nice, handmade, wood furniture. So, I knew the dining room storage solution would be more of short term, just while we're living in this house kind of thing. So I sequestered a bookcase that Kenny already had that was acting as his DVD holder. It was yellow, and fit right into the color scheme, winning! 

I'm actually still working on trying to find a wine holder that works for our situation - I don't really drink that much wine, so it's not that big of an issue.

So here's the "After" or should I said "In Progress."

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Kitchen

When I got to Jacksonville, Kenny had 3 plates, a bowl and about 10,000 utensils. I'm not really sure why you need that many utensils when only 3 people can eat off a plate - but who knows.

So this is what it looked like when I got here and had unpacked a few of our wedding gifts. There's a large window in an area that is labeled a "breakfast nook." But we weren't planning on using it for a table, so I had to think of another use for the space.
Once again, knowing the colors of the bottom floor were green, brown, yellow and teal, I went to work on finding matching towels. Luckily, I had green curtains from my previous bedroom in my old apartment. And luckily, they happen to work with the color green were were going with.

Here's the to do list we had:
- Towels
- Pot holders
- Picture Frames for Wall space
- Calendar
- Cork Board
- New Trash Can (with a lid)
- Buffet/Storage for extra serving dishes
- Key Hanger

I found some towels at Target that matched our color scheme. I'm actually still on the hunt for pot holders...we got a trashcan & a key hanger/chalkboard from Target also.

The key/hat hanger
Side note: yes, I do live at Target as my second home. And we were fortunate to get lots of gift cards for wedding gifts. So thanks to our friends and family for making our home pretty :)

We found a buffet table at World Market. It's supposed to be a bookcase, but it worked perfectly for a buffet/storage for our serving dishes. Most importantly, it was on sale.

Next up were some crafty projects. I wanted a cork board where we could pin up receipts, grocery lists, funny pictures, cards, etc. Basically stuff you'd put on the fridge, but you run out of fridge space or magnets.

I bought a 3 pack of cork board at Micheal's & bought a shower curtain on sale from Home Goods (it was $5!) and decided on a little DIY. I cut a piece of the shower curtain to match the corkboard + a little bit more for the overhang of stapling it on. Then I got my staple gun, and stapled the fabric to the wood frame around the corkboard. I then got some binder clips (that matched the color scheme) and tacks to hold everything on the board.
I bought a smaller cork board and repeated the process to make a holder for our calendar. I found a template somewhere online, I seem to have lost the link, and printed that out.

Next up was some kitchen art. I found really cute printables here. The red one didn't go with my color scheme so I ended up just making one myself in brown that said "Mix It Up" with a whisk on it. I had some more picture frames so I ended up taking a piece of the fabric I used for the corkboards and put that in a frame. Along with another printable I made that just says "Milk, Butter, Eggs."

I used paper templates that were the same size as the picture frames so I could adjust and move them around till I found a position I liked. I then hung them all.
Also, this guy was in an ad that was on the sheet of paper I used as a template. Is this not the CREEPIEST thing you've ever seen? Why would you put Uncle Fester in your CPAP ad?

So now for the After Pictures with everything done:
To Do List:
- Towels
- Pot holders
- Picture Frames for Wall space
- Calendar
- Cork Board
- New Trash Can (with a lid)
- Buffet/Storage for extra serving dishes
- Key Hanger
Only have to find potholders that I like and then the Kitchen will be officially complete :)