Friday, July 30, 2010

here we come..

.happy friday friends.

i could not be more pleased to announce that the weekend is swiftly approaching.


basically, i have filled every waking moment for the next 48 hours with fun or necessary activities that will keep me fully occupied &/or entertained.  i'm going to be the best picture taker / memory maker so that this little online journal can thrive.
{martha stewart}

plans include but are not limited to:
visiting benny
dinner with girlfriends {giggles included}
pool for a moment - have to revive the freckles, my paleness is attacking once again
farmer's market - on the hunt for some fresh blooms for the house
hobby lobby - i have many up-coming projects.  i will undoubtedly reveal them here
cleaning / organizing
photography adventure with my dear friend jenna
birthday party
trip to louisville to help the 'rents & see my fam
dine with court & matt
campaigners with our awesome students


this should be a yet another full & wonderful weekend
{boxwoodcottage's flickr}

.i hope the same for all of you.  if you'd like to join in on any of the fun please give me a holler.
{sip slowly}

ps.  it's perfect outside.  are you in lexington?  go outside.  right this second.  drop whatever you're doing {unless it is carrying a child} and run outside.  it is gorgeous & breezy.  you don't want to miss this.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

thus far

this week...oh goodness.  this has been one full, long week.

back to the daily grind right?  well for me anyways, yes.  after our adventure over the weekend i started things off a little rough.  i was a busy busy bee all day at work but did have the delightful treat of meeting my husband at home for lunch.  this never happens so it was pretty perfect.  monday evening, after some incidental car problems, holly & i ventured off to frankfort {our state's capital} for a lovely dinner with our dear & pregnant pal mere-bear.  yes that is what her parents named her, mere-bear, can you believe it?  her bump {and babe} are growing & growing.  just darling.  i specifically brought my camera so i could capture that darling memory & what do you know?  i'm pictureless.  here's my theft for all the world to see. 
{tyler wasn't at dinner but this was a cute shot of the bump}
from din din we scurried back to lex-town for biblestudy where we all but finished up our series about money.  it really has been good for me to process through what scripture says about money {what it REALLY  says} and see how that is played out in real life.  it has been challenging & has certainly made me think.

it would be repetitive to say i was swamped all day, but that was the reality.  i was swamped.  i was basically a big stressball & hated everything work related all day.  that is a miserable way to live, but i couldn't snap out of it.  thank goodness, that has passed.  my only relief approached mid-day when holly & i were able to celebrate our awesome friend, angie's 26th birthday.  perhaps it wasn't the most glamorous of celebrations but we did get to eat a lot of breadsticks.  angie is the oldest person i know {& that is what her cookie cake said}.

{that's her in the crown}
{i don't drink.  that's how i look}
after leaving later than i had hoped from work, i sat in traffic that seems 1 million times slower when  you are in a hurry than when you have no where to be.  i got myself all worked up.  it was one of those days where you want to cancel all your plans and take a long bath, soak & read old pottery barn catalogs full of things you won't buy.  i finally got it together enough to enjoy a truly wonderful evening.

immediately after arriving home we shot back out the door & headed to meet the ladies in my family.  they were celebrating my grandma & my cousin's {who i consider an aunt} birthdays.  they are two of the most wonderful women in the whole world.  i'm so glad we got to stop by, even if it was just for a few moments.

ben & i had a long standing date to go to a lexington legends game with tickets provided by my office.  the weather was absolutely perfect. 

it was 80 degrees, slight breeze and no humidity.  this is unheard of in kentucky!  all the stress of the day melted away when i got to spend time with my sweet husband in seats right behind home plate. 
the legends are a minor league team here in lexington, it's no 'great american ballpark' but it was fun.  if you live in the area & especially if you have kids, you should head on out there.  it's a really fun night.  one note: i would avoid taking children on 'jersey shore night' or $1 beer night perhaps.  i cheered obnoxiously, saw some LHS girls & spent much needed quality time with benny.

oh, oh and we went on quarter hot dog night!  woot woot!

we finished the night off with a walk around the block with a quick pit stop at my parents house for a visit.  they live down the street.  tuesday night was a TREAT.

i won't complain anymore about my poor attitude.  what does complaining about my attitude do other than make my attitude worse?  full day at work and then sped home to see my loving husband.  we were preparing for a post-camp pool party for the evening but giant gray clouds and a gloomy forcast ruined our fun.  we ended up cancelling our fun night planned with students which was terribly sad but i must say that a surprise evening at home wasn't so bad afterall.  the poston's stopped by with baby silas {who loves his auntie jen & uncle ben} and we got play for a few minutes.  isn't he such a doll!?  he'll be crawling before you know it!

.that's our week thus far.
we have a lot coming up, i'll keep ya posted!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

48 hours

we had a fantastic weekend up in chicago.  i left my camera at home.  i know...i'm the worst.  i wish i could show you the mass of folks we were surrounded by for our whirlwind trip but you'll have to settle for stolen facebook shots. 
there were kids, babies, aunts, uncles, grandmas, brothers, sisters, & cousins as far as the eye could see.  it was lovely.

friday evening ben & i ventured on up to northern ky to meet up with his mom, pop & brother.  i got to visit my dear friend cory for a few hours which was dream.  it's hard when you don't get to see your close friends very often!  james {her babe} was asleep but i didn't sneak a peek into the crib where he was sleeping with his arms straight up, just like superman.

after staying up much later than my old lady bedtime, we took a quick wink & then hit the road once again.  up, up & away to the suburbs of chi-town for some much needed visiting. 

ben's aunt mary jane & uncle joe had everyone over.  they have a great home for entertaining: a big ol' room connected to the kitchen for catching up, a patio for relaxing, a pool for cooling off {it was a billion degrees}, a pond for fishing, a yard for playing.  my favorite parts of the day: just being together, going down the pond, squishing the little baby cheeks AND seeing ben's aunt mary jane get around with no problem.  when we were up for christmas she was struggling to breathe & she could only walk a few steps without being totally exhausted.  now, since she's had her double lung transplant, she's up moving around, running all over the house, cooking & enjoying her time with people she loves.  it really is a miracle.  how awesome that we get to be a witness to that!? 

.two of the cutest babies in the world.
look at that curly hair.  love.
i'm not sure if anyone took any good group shots this year, and if so they aren't on fb yet {that i could find}  here's some of the gals & guys from last year.

sunday we slept in a tad & eventually got up and ate platefuls of mada's pancakes.  we always stay with ben's aunt mada & uncle rob when we come to town & they are so hospitable...they take such great care of us & are incredibly welcoming.

from there we went to D & D Foods, which is an italian deli & shop owned & operated by benny's fam.  i'm not italian so i never know anything about what different foods are, how you eat it, where it comes from etc. but it is so fun to be there!  an atmosphere like none other that i've been in.  since the deli has been around for such a long time {and is run by such great people} folks flock from all over to come visit grandma ada, uncle guido & the rest of the fam.  if you are ever in the chicago heights area i highly recommend you stop in and see them!  tell them we sent you!

we haven't even gotten to the actual family reunion yet!  that's where we headed next - to the family reunion, which is held at a local park which houses an awesome pool & water slide.  the kids loved it.  we ate {and ate more} and hung out with an even larger group than saturday.  sadly, our time in chicago had to come to a close.  we all had work monday morning & needed to get back to kentucky.  so back into the car we went. 

just another road trip with my best friend.  so lovely.

Friday, July 23, 2010

family + family + more family

.so excited for this weekend.

in a few hours we will be on our way to meet up with ben's {immediate} family to travel to the windy city.  yes chicago.  for a family reunion.  he has a big ol' family & i can't wait to see everyone.  i definitely hit the jackpot when i married into this crowd.  they are a bunch of hilarious, lively & loving people.  though the visit may be brief, i'm certain that it will be fantastic.  don't worry, i'll share as soon as we return.

.some unrelated pretties to hold you over.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

take me?

i have a major hankering to run off to ikea.  ikea is filled with things i can't afford don't need.  i'm incredibly thankful for all the blessings that benny & i have received and recognize that stuff will never bring you joy. 

that being said...window shop, shall we?

i think 1 or 2 of these lil guys would do my living room good!  people have to sit on our floor fairly often {don't judge our lack of seating} and these might be a sweet treat for a sore tush or two.

i don't know where this could go in our home but i like it.  i keep envisioning it in a girly bathroom / dressing room {we have neither}.  if it showed up at my house {hint hint ikea} i'm sure i could find a suitable home for it.

pillow $2.99
i know this is a funky pillow but if you have a little girl or you're funky might need it.  $2.99 are you kidding?  you can't even get a pillow form for that.

i know i shouldn't use the word 'love' loosely but geesh i really really really like this throw blanket. really.

i'm pretty sure i need this throw in every color.  i love stripes. i love blankets.  i love everything cheap.  i love cheap striped blankets.

200 straws $1.99 

such a cute bed!

$6.99 for a 6 pack 

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

rain drops

the fabric for my background found {here}

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

and the winner is...

this amaz-az-zing tee is going to...
Anonymous said...

I LoVe this shirt!!!!!


Tuesday, July 13, 2010
used {THIS} random number generator to find our winner!
i'll contact you soon to find out what size & color tee you'd like so we can get that out for you. 
thanks to everyone who looked into the program & for supporting with your comments!  if you haven't yet, visit the heritage website {HERE}.  i spoke with ang about the option to purchase tees as a form of support & hopefully the details of that can be ironed out soon so ya'll can get one of these bomb-awesome tees.

Monday, July 19, 2010

miscellany monday

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

if you're reading this from my blog originally you must go visit carissa, the host of miscellany monday.  she is hilarious & her blog is fantastic. 

if you're visiting from carissa's, welcome!  we're so happy to have you!

{1} this weekend was relaxing & blissful!  i hope yours was the same!

{2} 3D movies:  they are everywhere.  every movie is "coming soon in 3D".  i don't care for 3D movies, they make me motion sick and cost extra to go to.  why would i want to pay more for a migraine & nausea? i'll continue to see my films in the good ol' fashioned flat way, thank you!

{3} today is the last day to enter this super awesome giveaway!  hey, guys & want a the softest shirt ever fo FREE?  go {HERE}!

{4} the four times that i read carissa's miscellany monday i called it 'melancholly monday' {in my head}...i guess that is a true reflection of my subconscious peeking out.  what if every monday was a holiday?  the world would be a better place.

{5} inception anyone?  it's the new leo decaprio movie & we saw it this weekend.  ben & i both loved it!  i want to see it again so i can play detective & sniff out clues.

{6} for the past year & a half i've been trying to talk myself into being a grown-up.  i'd really like to learn how to cook, plan meals in advance, grocery shop well.  i'm afraid it's just not my strong suit.  i don't know what will happen if we ever have kids.  they may only eat fruit roll-ups.  they're part fruit right?

happy monday friends!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

easy peasy dresser how-to

at the request of sweet friends, with inquiring minds, i thought i would share {in detail} how we repainted our new dresser.

& i feel like i should put a giant disclaimer on this post.

ben & i don't really know what we're doing.  we 'trial & error' through our projects & just see what sticks so just be warned that this is not the only way {or even the best way} to redo a piece of's just what we happened to try!  if you refinish furniture professionally, please don't read this.  if you are a novice diy-er {like me} please enjoy!

we dragged our goliath sized dresser into the house to work on because, while we do have a garage, it is about a billion degrees outside & i hate sweat.  so into the den it went.  after taking all the drawers out and scattering them throughout our den & dining room there was literally no more free space {giant dresser}.  i we placed the frame of the dresser on a big ol' drop cloth {like you would use for painting a room} & put the drawers on an old sheet doubled over.

i first removed all the hardware from the drawers.  super fast & easy step.  i can't why anyone would want to skip this step & try and paint around the hardware.  i encourage you...take those things off!

next i taped {with painters tape} around the drawers so that i could have a clean edge.  i learned from our desk redo that if i don't want to paint the entire drawer that i need a little guidance or else it will look sloppy.  doing that really only took a couple of minutes & really helped me speed through painting the edges of the drawers without worry.

next we primed using oil based primer {you can find it at any hardware store}.  you aren't supposed to prime in a closed-off area aka a den, but like a said...a billion degrees is HOT!  we didn't sand the furniture or anything before priming because if you use a primer like ours it covers & seals any type of stain or treatment that was originally on the piece.  if there had been unlevel sections {dents, grooves, etc.} we likely would have sanded &/or wood puttied them but any nick that this piece had was a-ok with us.  we did two coats of primer & like i said it was pretty time consuming with all those little crevices to take care of.  an important note for anything oil based: you cannot clean up oil-based products with soap & water.  there may be other products but we always use mineral spirits to clean out our primer.  it stinks & is a pain in the rear so i bought a cheapity cheap brush for the primer that i could toss once finished & only took the time to clean my mini brush that was used for the detailed portions.  if oil based paint or primer dries i hear that it's nearly impossible to clean out so stay on top of those projects! 

one neat trick that i've learned from projects is that if you are waiting in between coats or need to take a break, you don't have to clean out your brush.  just get a damp cloth and wrap your brush in it & the paint/primer will stay wet!  treat.  i've also hear of people doing that & placing it in a plastic bag if you want to leave it overnight {but i haven't tried that myself}.

after two coats of primer we did two coats of paint.  it is behr acrylic-based paint in martha stewart's 'glass of milk' shade.  so perfect for us.  i used a brush {one wide & one little} even though ben insisted that i use a roller.  the rollers we have may get more paint on the piece & faster but they also leave fuzz all over my fresh paint.  there is nothing more annoying than fuzz while you're painting.  so brushes for me ...until i find good rollers.  brushes for primer, brushes for paint, brushes for sealant.

post primer & paint we moved on to sealant.  we used minwax polycrylc.  i've heard that it is really important to use water-based sealant on light colored paint if you don't want it to yellow your piece.  we just brushed it on.  sealant is hard because it's clear so you're not really sure what you've done & what you haven't.  we did two coats of that because the pail said to but i was completely content to do one.  ben made us do round 2.

sanding edges = intimidating.  holly from {life in the fun lane} is actually a huge inspiration to me.  she renovates furniture for a living and is a master-distresser.  sometimes she does super subtle distressing {maybe even less than this piece} and other times, she roughs those things up!  no matter what she does it's perfection, so we thought we should take the plunge. we agreed to go for the less-distressed look & just do the corners & edges where it would naturally wear over time.  i think that the sanding really does make the piece much more interesting and i would advise if for nearly any project {if, like me, you like things to look "loved"}.  we used 400 grit sandpaper that i bought at home depot months ago for some forgotten other project.

we put the original hardware back onto the drawers and gave our new dresser a new home!

wah-la!  so pleased.

hope this is helpful for anyone who is about to take a the leap into furniture repainting.  be brave...if we can do it, i promise you can too!

Friday, July 16, 2010

um it's friday!

hip hip hooray!
Elegance & Decay eclectic kitchen
1st option - residential stills eclectic

our original weekend agenda got demolished by ben's evil work schedule so  our revised plans for the weekend may include:
sunbathing by the pool
picnicing with my mom & papaw
putting away all the clothes in our house
scrubbin' our bathroom
cooking out {if we avoid rain}
having bstudy with students
perhaps a sweet mixture of reading/crafting/thrifting
baking brownies
a date with my husband {pretty please benny?}

if you want to get in on any of those plans...holla!

.hope you have yourself such a fantastic weekend too.

if you haven't already...don't forget to enter this awesome giveaway.
the winner is being drawn on monday!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

new to us

a few months ago ben & i had a serious discussion about our finances, spending, giving etc.  during this discussion ben told me that we should probably wait until he started teaching for us to purchase a dresser for our room.  ben will not be teaching for 2 or 3 years.  ben knows that i don't buy anything that is expensive.  he wanted me to wait 2 or 3 years for a craigslist dresser to grace our room.  months & years of clothes strewn about the floor flooded my mind.  luckily, i have a sweet prince of a husband and we didn't wait 2 years.

after perusing craigslist for a few hours minutes i found the perfect dresser for us.  we drove across town in 90-something degree heat in a van with no air conditioning and leather seats to pick up this gem.  all the sweat {literally} was worth it.

being the dum dum that i am i didn't take a "before" picture.  {i have a mild obsession with before & afters, i can't believe i forgot} furthermore, i didn't take a pic...not one...while it was out in our den.  now that it is in our room aka it's new home, our bed prevents me from taking any direct pictures either.  so double fail but here is the final product or at least what i could capture. 
we don't have a ton of light in our bedroom so it's hard to get a great shot.  i've yet to set up any type of vignette or such to snuggle this dresser into it's new place but that will come someday.  i hope to have a mirror to hang above it and minimal yet homey little lovelies to live on top.
the piece started as a medium-colored wood with some kind of different finish on the middle row of drawers.  i didn't mind it in its original condition but ben wanted to get to painting as soon as we brought it home.  so with gift-card in hand, hubby & i ran to home depot and picked up paint & other essentials.  we're getting to a point where we already have a lot of the tools & supplies that we need for projects, which is really fun.

we got a pint of martha stewart's 'glass of milk' in behr paint.  is that wrong to do?  we did it.  the color is barely off-white which is exactly what i was looking for.  not bright white but not a yellowish cream in the slightest.  it's perfect.
we did two coats of primer & two coats of paint.  let me tell you...this dresser was no simple sally.  it has about a billion nooks & crannies.  not wanting the paint to pool in all the little crevices we had to be very detailed & patient in redoing this piece.  we finished it off with two coats of poly-acrylic and sanded the edges lightly to highlight all the awesome intricacies.  it was definitely frightening to think about scratching up a perfectly fine, freshly painted piece of furniture but i think it was the right decision.  look at those pretty little legs!

after reassumbling the original hardware we drug this giant hunk of wood into our room.  it's more than 6 feet long i think.  so much space, functionality & warmth for $60.

...and it lived happily ever after.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


i forgot to mention some other rather noteworthy highlights from this past week.  i gave you a little taste of camp {here} but there's no way for me to capture all that goes into a week.  every little detail is planned & designed to aid in pointing kids to Christ and let them have the best week of their life.

my girls asked more than once what was going to happen to celebrate the fourth of july while we were at camp.  {they are SO inquisitive} two things should be understood, i tell them all week long "i don't know what's going on" so that they can be surprised by what comes next, in reality...i always know what's going on.  secondly, you never know what day of the week is at camp, much less the date!  so i really was unsure if the camp would do anything for the fourth.  not because they hate america but just because camp kind of has a flow all of its own.  so, i told them repeatedly that i really didn't know if anything would happen and i could tell they didn't believe me.  i could tell they were anticipating something great...which made me nervous...because like i said...i really didn't know if anything was planned.

on the 4th i found out that our amazing assign team did in fact plan something extraordinary to surprise our students with. after an evening of hearing truth, dancing, & singing {i wish i could say more without spoiling} they handed out sparklers. the students were super jazzed about that and we all lit them at the same time. it really was neat to look out over this huge space, complete darkness except the lights of hundreds of shimmering sparklers. then to the joy & astonishment of many, tons of gorgeous fireworks lit up the sky while america the beautiful played. it was just like the sandlot. it was awesome. a definite memory maker.

while i was in virginia, my dad was in florida {with the rest of my fam} celebrating the big 5-1.  yep, dad grew a year older.  we're so thankful for you!

happy belated birthday via blog pop!

today is gloomy & gross outside.  i hope it doesn't damper the day.  we have plans to hang out with students over the next few evenings {hooray} & i've got projects & chores galore piling up in my mind {and garage} for this coming weekend. 

i hope to be back to visit soon. 

happy tuesday friends!

oh, oh, oh...and if you haven't yet, go enter for this GIVEAWAY.  it's something great for any guy or gal.

Monday, July 12, 2010

a giveaway {to support something great}!

my dear friend, ang, works for an organization called 'heritage of kentucky' which is a non profit organization that teaches a character based abstinence program for teenagers, parents and community leaders in Eastern and Central Kentucky.  the program directly impacts many students throughout our town and in ways that echo for generations.

in the past they have been federally funded but recently their funding has been cut and the program {along with all of its awesome influence} is looking at elimination.  please check out their blog {HERE} and see what they are all about.  in a world that is filled with falsehood & facades it's a shame to see people who really care, speak truth & encourage teens to think about their decisions & futures get pushed out.

in honor of their hard work to love people well & help mold lives in ways that really matter {with grace & lace} is hosting it's first-ever giveaway...JUST.FOR.YOU!

we're giving away one of these bomb-awesome, super soft tees to one lucky reader. 
we have smalls, mediums & larges available. and your choice of orange or navy {both heathered...and did i say soft?}

.to enter just leave a comment. 
you don't have to have a blog, you don't have to have commented before or be a follower.  just leave me a lil note below.

for an additional entry mention this giveway on your blog or FB.
if you don't need a tee, maybe you know someone who does?  show your support & your love for free loot - enter below.
{just make sure you leave your email address if it's not connected to your profile}
winner will be drawn at random next monday, the 19th.

leave a note, say hello, ask a question...they'd love to see you