Thursday, June 24, 2010

An Epic Reading Fail

I haven't been shy about my love for audio books, and I've even divulged my little scheme to get them dirt cheap, or a special technique to MAKE money on the audio books.

Recently, I was feeling lazy and didn't feel like scheming to get my audio books for pennies, and wandered into the local library, which I pass almost 3-4 times a week, and embarrassingly haven't visited or supported in the year and a half that I've lived in the community. Oops.

I was in a  bit of a hurry so I quickly headed over to the audio book section and found what I thought would be an interesting title. My excellent (HA!) skimming skills told me that the book was something about stories from women under 25 about life, love, and getting through it all in one piece. Comedy mixed in. Light, easy listening. Perfect for the car ride to and from work. 

Oh. Was. I. Wrong.

This is what I actually picked up....

Somehow I missed the part about "midlife" and "Women over Forty". Both descriptors were in the title. FAIL. Not exactly my demographic.

I will be returning the book promptly. As in, after work tonight. Hopefully my 2nd trip to the library will result in me coming home with something I actually want to read/listen to. Hey, at least I made it into the library. Baby steps, right?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

I'm a Beige-aholic, Part 2

As promised in the original I'm a Beige-aholic post, I quickly took some pictures last night to make the beige overload look a bit more real.

Here is the introduction to the beige (and sorry this 1st photo is so dark):

  • Chocolate brown headboard wall
  • Art above the bed, except the pictures are crooked, oops
  • Our nightstands and the lamps on them don't match-- but I'm shopping! I know everything doesn't always have to be matchy-matchy all the time, but sometimes having two matching night stands brings tranquility. At least for me it does.
  • Regardless of the fact that they don't match each other... I'm not crazy about the actual lamps on the night stands. I've ordered two new porcelain lamps from Pottery Barn-- they are green, but I plan to paint them blue-- so this problem is likely solved.  I'm still working on nightstands.

Here is a close up of the beige bedding, beige bedskirt, and tiny snip it of the beige carpeting.  Can you say overload much? Yikes. I'd like the duvet to say, but the bed skirt can of course go.

This is a such a great reading nook for us and I love this feature of the room. This photo also give some context for the drapes and the color of the art.  The art and chair will definitely stay, but I'm up for switching out the the lamp or the shade.

Thanks for everyone's feedback so far. I have been really inspired! I'll certainly do an update with the lamps soon, and other changes and efforts to de-beige the master bedroom. Thanks again!

Friday, June 18, 2010

I'm a Beige-aholic

I could use some advice in our... ahem... bedroom. DECORATING ADVICE, my friends.

I love beige. I know that sounds lame, but I do. I'm not afraid of color, but for whatever reason, I use color pretty sparingly. Currently, our master bedroom (which I really do like) is decorated with:
  • Beige- Surprised? Carpet, 3 walls, most of the bedding including the bedskirt. 
  • Chocolate Brown- Headboard wall is painted this color, all the framed pictures in the room are in dark wooden frames
  • Soft Blues- bedding, curtains, candles, some glass art on my dresser, etc.
Hard to picture? Don't worry, I have photo help.
This is our bedding (but not our bed or wall colors).

Instead of ALL of that beige, I have a little color in two euro shams that are pictured in the back of this photo. They are the same pattern as the duvet.

And one of these fun pillows in front of all the beige.... So we have blue in the back, lots of beige, and some blue in the front...sounds like a mullet... party in the back... business in the front. Anyone? Anyone? Ha... I digress. 

I also have blue and chocolate brown patterned curtains which nicely complement the blue in the shams, (and I like them, too. So no need to change these.)

Here is where I need your help.

We have already established:
  • I have 3 beige walls
  • I have beige carpet
  • I have a beige bedskirt
I'm starting to think that I need to go to beige-aholics anonymous! 

Where can I add more color?

The carpet is brand new, and we can't afford to rip up and replace new carpeting, and I don't really want to paint again... so I'm thinking about a blue bedskirt. But, it looks awful in this photo, and I can't picture it in our room.

A complementing rug? But... ahhh! More beige.

Before I spend a dime on de-beige-itizing the master bedroom, I thought I would ask for some help.

Any suggestions?

I will try to get a picture of the real room on the blog this weekend. I'm at work-- and should be working-- but this has been on my mind, and it's a Friday-- so I thought I would write!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Wishful Wednesday (or Thursday)

I'm a busy gal, and I can't always remember the assigned days of the week that go with particular blog posts-- Wishful Wednesday, Thankful Thursday, etc. So, this week,  I give you Wishful Wednesday, err, I mean.... Wishful Thursday!

I've been making a conscious effort to send more snail mail to friends and family. It's just fun! I'll send a note to say thanks for meeting for lunch, or a thinking of you note when someone has had a tough week, or even a note just to say hello for no reason. We just don't send enough handwritten notes today. Sure, a text from a friend to say "Thanks for meeting me, and I got home safely" is great, but it's not the same as coming from work to a mailbox with a real letter in it. Am I right?

I've in love with stationery and all things related to authentic handwritten correspondence. Therefore spending way too much money on it has never been a problem. I spent some time on Etsy today exploring their "all things paper" category and came across the beautiful work of Emilie Friday. Talk about being blown away! Why haven't I see her work before??

How beautiful are these stamps?

I can't get enough of them! Gorgeous!

What fun finds have you stumbled across on Etsy?

Monday, June 14, 2010

A Change of Sleeping Arrangements

How gorgeous is this hotel room I was privileged enough to stay in last week?

Hello, work conferences. It's nice to meet you.

Last week, I was in New York City for a conference near Times Square. We stayed at the Renaissance. Quite the posh hotel, let me tell you.

So while my poor husband was at home sick and barely able to sleep through the night with his terrible cough, I was slumming it up here. Not bad, eh?

If you were following my tweets from last week regarding not sleeping through the night due to the incessant coughing coming from MrMarried's lungs, I learned the hard way that it's perfectly okay to not sleep in the same bed as your husband every night if you can't rest due to his summer sinus infection/ mysterious three week cough. You are not a bad wife. You are not a bad caretaker. You just need your rest. It's perfectly okay. I don't know why I was feeling so guilty about it for a day or two. Probably because I was sleep deprived.

So...hello, guest room, it's nice to meet you. I'm thankful I sprung for the nicer linens when we were registering!

Monday, June 7, 2010

No, I Don't Have Writer's Block and Thoughts on Uncle Sam

Whew. It's been far too long since I last blogged.

No, I don't have writer's block.

For today, I just need to get my fingers moving on these keys, and get back into my routine that I've been missing.

I could blame it on "being busy"-- but, who the heck ISN'T busy?! We all are. I can't remember the last time I wasn't "busy".

I could blame it on being at work from 8-6 each day, not being able to look at my computer for another second after I leave work, and a renewed sense of wanting to spend quality time with my husband when I get home (read: NO computers as distractions) But, I'm not going to blame it on that either.

Regardless, blogging has fallen by the wayside. It doesn't mean that I haven't been "writing" blog posts in my head. In fact, I write posts in my head all the time! I write recipe posts, and tales about the inappropriate things my boss says to me each day. But, there has been one post that I've dying to get into words--a post about the 1st Time Home Buyers Tax Rebate.

MrMarried and I purchased our home in August 2009, and filed an amended 2008 tax return (yes, you can file a return for the year before you bought your house. Strange, right?) to indicate our interest in receiving the tax credits made available to first time home owners-- Up to $8000, or 10% of the purchase price of your home-- whichever is less.

We filed the amended return in August 2009- got married in September 2009, and JUST received our check last week. 10 months, my friends.

I realize there is an unimaginable amount of paperwork associated with all the returns that are filed each year, but 10 months seems a little long, doesn't it? I could have gotten pregnant and had a 1 month old in the same amount of time. Sheesh!

If you applied for the rebate, know that you qualify for it, and are still waiting for your refund... don't give up! There were several incidents where I know the government was hoping that we would throw up our hands and give up, like--

1. Requesting the SAME documents be sent to them THREE times
2. Hanging up when we called to check on the return
3. Threatening letters from the tax advocate service implying that we hadn't complied with instructions

Really a friendly process, right?

Guess what Uncle Sam? I'm up for a challenge-- and when you tell me that you'll relieve my tax burden by $8000, I'm really up for the challenge. You'd better believe that I am going to climb every mountain, send back every form, and jump through every hoop you put in front of me. So thank you, Uncle Sam, for the challenge, and the check too.... even though it was 8ish months late.

Where has your persistence paid off?