Thursday, October 20, 2011

Office Space

 Since we moved to the new apartment, I told my husband that I needed my own work station. I have been working diligently in getting the extra bedroom aka the office set up for 1.) my sister in law who came to visit us last weekend and 2.) a place that I could actually work at.

The first thing was to get the desk cleared off, so that I could have a place to sit my laptop. Check. Then I needed cute accessories to spruce it up. Finally, I needed a bulletin board to place all my fun things on. I already had one, but hated the design. It is a yellowish board with pineapples on it. It's fine, just not my style. So the refurbishing had to begin. Here we go.

Here's the old board with the new fabric. It was $3.00 a yard at Joann's Fabrics, so I had to get 2 yards. 

Up close of the super cute hound's tooth. 

In progress.

All ribbon has been attached.

Now with buttons to hide the staples and hanging on the wall.

Now with fun pictures. If you're wondering that is a note from my husband that says "I thought bacon was the greatest thing ever... then I met you." I feel so loved. 

And here is my desk complete with a Mac laptop and Wall-E figurine.

Here is a better view with all my office supplies and my chair. It may not seem like a bit deal, but I have been wanting a writing desk forever! At the old apartment it just wasn't possible, but now I have a nice quiet place to work. Love it!

- Jana

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Not Forgotten

I didn't forget that I had a blog. I always had it in the back of my mind that once things "settled down" that I would immediately get back to blogging. After all, I wouldn't want to let down my 3 loyal followers. We moved. My husband accepted a job in the big city, so we spent plenty of time packing and running all over the place enjoying the time between jobs.

Now we are in DFW, and loving every minute. It's a huge change, but the closeness of good friends, family, and more places to eat than we know what to do with have certainly softened the blow. The new exciting things about our new apartment are 1.) we have cable!, 2.) we have a fireplace, 3.) we have about 100 more square feet, and 4.) we have curtains in the living room!

I know these aren't super exciting changes, but they are for us. For years the Husband and I have wanted a fireplace that we could curl up in front of and watch a movie. Now all we need is a freeze this winter. Oh yes, the new curtains. You would like see a picture? Of course.

They look much better in real life than they do in the picture. The design reminds me of Ballard Designs a bit, and I just love that place. Check it out on-line if you aren't familiar with their products. These came from Lowes. I had a gift card from my mother in law that she gave me maybe 3 years ago that I hadn't spent.  Since this window gets a lot of heat during the day, we needed some blackout curtains. We originally had some black curtains with a tan swirly pattern on them. They were very pretty, but they didn't really go with any of our stuff. So I returned them and got these.

I never knew that having curtains that didn't match could make you sad. Every time I looked at the old ones I just became sad. First world problems, I know. But these are cheery and I smile every time I look at them. The real trick now is working in subtle splashes of teal. I have several vases and candlesticks that are the right color and will brighten up the room. I just have to find. That's right. We've been here 2 months and still have boxes and boxes that have not been unpacked. Thankfully, Husband doesn't equate my value as a wife with the number of boxes piled up in the office. :) He rocks like that.

  - Jana

Monday, June 27, 2011

Year 1

  The other day the Husband and I had our 1 year anniversary. That's right. 1 whole year together. How about a recap?

We got married. A good day to start. That day the girls and I ate Chick fil a twice and watched NCIS episodes on DVD while doing our hair. 

We eventually made it to Canada for our Honeymoon after 2 cancelled flights, and a day later than planned. The airlines lost our luggage, and we didn't have clean clothes for half the trip and Husband was sick for the other half.

A month later, I graduated with my Master's degree. 

We moved into the apartment.

We sold the house.

I spent a lot of time driving through Texas for work. We spent Thanksgiving with both families. 

But got Christmas Day to ourselves after celebrating early with my family and late with Husbands. He got me a Keurig. I got him a video game. We went to Ruidoso and rang in the new year during a blizzard and a power outage. My best friend got engaged. My Brother got engaged.

Then came the epic snow day where we got 4 days off of work! I think you might remember that.

We flew off to London with Husband's family and had ourselves a grand time. 

My Brother married a beautiful and wonderful woman.

Husband's best friend did the same.

Then we celebrated 1 year together. 

Happy 1 year anniversary to my Husband, although this post is a week late, but you knew that about me. 

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

June Cleaver

  Apparently there is a very fine line between blackened beef and your apartment being filled with smoke.  I have never blackened anything intentionally before. There seems to be an art to it. I wasn't aware of this fact until the kitchen was completely filled with smoke and my husband was trying to fan it away from the fire alarm, which works by the way. We ended up with an ok meal and dining al fresco inside our apt with all the windows and doors open and fans on. This was last night. Tonight all the pans that I happen to blacken as well still reside in the kitchen sink.
   - Jana

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


 The neighbor children are outside having a screaming contest. In this competition everyone loses.
     - Jana

Saturday, April 16, 2011


  I recently lost close to 10 pounds. I'm not exactly sure what my starting weight was since the only number that I had as a reference for was when I went to the doctor when I was sick and she told me the number. I told her the scale was wrong. Despite our differing opinions on the accuracy of machinery I decided that I needed to eat healthier.

 Since then I have thought about what else I could do to lose weight. To be skinnier. But skinnier isn't the point. Healthier is the point. So instead of focusing what I am lacking (the skinniness) I am focusing on what I have gained. A healthier version of myself. A me that makes me smile in the mirror instead of frown. Instead of comparing myself to others, I could just be happy with what I see when I look at myself.

  Being a part of the sisterhood of women I think we all face body image issues. I blame the media. Magazines, TV, movies all tell us what we as women should look like. Taller. Skinnier. Slimmer. Either way I am guilty of letting the media define what is beautiful and tell me what is lacking in myself. Blarney!

  Actually, I am kind of sick of seeing what the media calls Beauty. Yes, those women in the media are beautiful, but what about the rest of us? Those who do not fit inside the mold of what America has labeled Beautiful. How about we just start being happy and content with the way God made us? How about taking care of his creation (ourselves) and relish the fact that God designs all women as beautiful? I think that might revolutionize the way we see and carry ourselves.

  The old adage "God Doesn't Make Junk" is worn out even though it's true. What if it were "God Makes Beautiful Women because the Sculptor's eye only sees beings that He could fall in love with."I think that would make a big difference in the way we define beautiful. That was just on my mind this morning. Here's to all the Beautiful People out there that God created!
   - Jana

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Really Really Thin Pancakes

 5 years ago my then boyfriend, now husband made a very bold statement, "I make really good crepes." Later that year he made me dinner, Mandarin Chicken to be exact. It was the most vile meal I had ever attempted to eat. It grossed us both out, and we had to leave his apartment to get away from the smell that lingered in every molecule of everything in his apartment. From that point on he was banned from the kitchen, and he has never volunteered to make dinner again.

2 years ago we went to Paris and had some fantastic crepes.

2 weeks ago we went to London, and I have been craving strawberry crepes since we got back.

2 days ago I fearlessly requested that my husband make good on his promise 5 years ago. "Make me some really good crepes," I requested. "No problem," he smiled. He graciously gave up a half hour of playing video games to make me crepes. And he was right, he does make really good crepes.  Being the good wife that I am, I grabbed my camera to document the success of his crepes. Behold:

 Voila! My husband can make amazing crepes. I am a lucky girl. Tonight I'm making home made chili. This might just turn into a food blog if I'm not careful. But who would object to that? Please ignore the grossness of my stove. I'll get to cleaning that, eventually.

  Bon Apetite!
     - Jana

Monday, March 28, 2011

4 Eyes

  I just recently started wearing glasses. I've worn contacts since 8th grade, and, as of a few months ago, my eyes didn't like contacts anymore. Now, its glasses most all the time. I'm still not used to having an object constantly on my face; it takes some time to adapt to a permanent fixture in front of your eyes. Apparently, I am still not used to wearing my glasses.
  I was speaking with a family today and, as usual, was using my hands to emphasize my point. In the process of over emphasizing I managed to slap my glasses off of my face and towards the family I was speaking with. I always seem to make the best impressions.

  My husband calls me memorable. But that's just his way of saying, "you're a complete klutz, but I love you anyway."

    - Jana

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Shave and a Hair Cut

 My husband participated in No Shave November. I did not. The reason I am just now blogging about it is because yesterday he finally shaved after getting his hair cut. It's starting to warm up here in Texas and his beard was getting itchy. He lets me know that he is going to go shave. I mumble, "ok" while still blogging about angry spaghetti.

This is the before shot in London last week.

He shows up in the living room looking like this.

But that wasn't as astonishing as what came next.

Which I found even more horrifying.

Now he looks like this.

  This is a picture from our Honeymoon in Canada, and how he looks today, without always having a lake in the background. It's hard to believe that a mere 9 months ago we could have imagined he would grow such a beard. Ah, those were the days. 

  Right now he's doing our taxes, and I'm blogging about his facial hair. Marriage is 50/50 right?
     - Jana 

Friday, March 25, 2011

Angry Spaghetti

  Something happened to day that made me very upset. And being the mature adult that I am, I harnessed my anger and did my best to keep calm and carry on. This was my stress ball.

  It used to be a baseball stress ball. Now it's 2 baseball stress balls. Retail therapy was the best way to fix things, and I absolutely used the excuse "I'm a girl, I'm upset, I need to go shopping." I hit the road with angry driving music and then hit the stores (not literally, I wasn't that upset). So I found a dress, a necklace, and a button up shirt for my husband all for under $25. Turns out I'm pretty decent bargain hunter when I'm upset.

  I came home and made dinner for my husband. He wanted spaghetti, so I went to work making dinner for the both of us. But it came out tasting weird. I told him there was a missing ingredient: love. It was replaced by a different emotion. My spaghetti tasted like anger. Even my husband admitted it tasted weird, but he ate it anyway.

  There was also a bag of microwaveable broccoli with cheese sauce to compliment the spaghetti. Well it didn't compliment the entree, it insulted the spaghetti. I suggested that he shouldn't eat that either. I think I hear the gentle rustle of Cinnamon Toast Crunch leaving its box. 

  I think I'll get a bowl and join him.
     - Jana

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Sorry Chaps!

  Sorry it's been a while chaps, but I've been in England. London, to be exact. My husband and I went with his family to London for Spring Break, and it was lovely. Unfortunately, it was one of those trips that I have to process everything, before I blog about it. There was so much to see and do that it will take awhile to really comprehend what we saw.

  The highlights were going to the British Library and seeing a Gutenberg Bible, an original Mozart, Handel, and Jane Austen. Can you believe so much literary history could be in one place? I couldn't. I was near giddy, and my husband just laughed at me while I jumped up and down in excitement. Thankfully, he knew what he was getting into when he married me.

There are no pictures seeing as they don't allow cameras in the Library, but you can imagine how beautiful and amazing it was. If you can't, just go see it yourself. Even if you can imagine it, go see it yourself. The other great part of the trip was that I got to hold a first edition set of the Chronicles of Narnia! There was a rare book shop just down from our flat, so we spent the morning trolling through the tomes. It was lovely. Here are some photos you might enjoy.

  In other news I walked into a glass door yesterday at work and saw a Jedi a few weeks ago. That's been my month.
   - Jana

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Back Home

  After days of snow and a few more days of traveling on the road, I am back home. The thing that I love about traveling is that there is always a new experience. My most interesting experience of this past trip was quite shocking to me. My husband and my good friend, Meredith, say this always happens to me, and it seems, only to me.

  I was sitting at La Madeleine waiting for my to-go order and browsing the internet on my phone. I had my legs cross so my left foot stuck up in the air a little bit. A voice says, "I love your boots." I look up, and low and behold there is a man in scrubs (I really hope he was a doctor) who was staring at my feet.

He continues, "You know, I had a pair of boots like yours once, except the toes were much pointier. Did you know they make boots that are pointier than yours?"

"No, I wasn't aware of that."

"Yea they sure do." The Doctor-Man proceeds to tell me all about hit old pair of pointier boots while touching my foot! A complete stranger came up and started touching my foot to demonstrate how much pointier his boots were and where his boots had creases and cracks. I was so taken aback all I could do was laugh. Lesson of the day for those who are in the medical profession: even if you are a doctor please do not touch the feet of people you do not know or are not in your office seeking medical attention.

  My favorite part of the trip was meeting a dachshund named Molly in the elevator. My husband is a sucker for dogs in general, but especially dachshunds.

   - Jana

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Snow Day, Part Dos

  The low today was 8 degrees Fahrenheit. Wa-hoo! The snow and ice we received yesterday didn't melt since it never got above 20 degrees. We Texans aren't used to such wether, so we've coped by watching movies on the couch all day. I stocked up on food on Monday in expectation that we might be snowed in until Friday, which the weather isn't supposed to rise above freezing. Let it snow!

Stay Warm. - Jana

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Putting the Pieces Together

  Right before I left to go out of town for business we bought a coffee table set from Kirkland's at a great price. I was really surprised that Husband actually liked it, as he keeps me on my toes about his design sense. I posted a picture of the set a few posts back. Well, they only had the floor model and they wouldn't let me take that home, so we had to wait until the following Thursday to pick it up. Husband waited until I got back on Friday so that we could assembly the pieces together as a married couple. Awww.

  Now that the pieces are put together it's all about making the living room look good. The new pillows add some flare, but it needed more. Since today is a snow day I thought I would put the living room together to see how it looked.

I kept our large couch at my old roommate's house after I got married. Husband already had a couch, but I had a set, so we sold his, and kept mine. We just recently moved it from her house to our apartment. I love having the couch back. It is the perfect place to nap. Since the couch moved in, we moved the club chair to the bedroom to try to make a reading nook. And that's the new coffee table and end tables.

Husband got this book for Christmas, and that is a favorite vase of mine.

Here's a close up of the iron work that hangs above the couch.

A view of the whole living room. I think we need a rug and some curtains to go over the window. Since it's a snow day they would have really come in handy to block out some of the cold that the wind sends searing through the window.

And another view of the coffee table. My family are big blanket people, so no living room is complete without a basketful of blankets. They're hidden behind the end table between the love seat and couch.

We've also made a few changes to our bedroom and were finally able to hang our pictures that we bought at Mont Martre last summer when we were in Paris. 

This is Husband's painting. A bit nicer and a bit more expensive. One of Husband's favorite places in Paris is Notre Dame, and if you have ever been there you can understand why. The stain glass windows are a gorgeous example of French craftsmanship, and its overwhelming to be in the church. I honestly don't know how anyone would be able to focus on worshipping in the sanctuary with so much artwork to gaze upon.  

And this is the water color that I picked out. The Eiffel Tower was one of my favorite things about Paris, so I really wanted a painting of it. This water color was just so sunny that I couldn't refuse. I feel that it really captures the elation that I felt when I first saw it. 

  So these are just a few changes that we are making at the apartment. I hope you like them; we sure do. Enjoy your snow day if you have one. 

   - Jana

Sunday, January 30, 2011

On the Road

  I travel a good bit for my job, so I have been on the road for the past week. I always enjoy the Dallas/Ft. Worth area or DFW, and I am always finding places that I didn't know existed. I love going to DFW for the food. The first place I got to visit was Boston's Pizza. I've mentioned that before? The Sicilian? Addiction? What? Yea, so what?

The Ultimate in Pizza.

This is the personal sized pizza, but the XL pizza that can feed 3 adults is glorious.

  My other reason for loving to go to DFW is that I get to meet up with my best friend Michelle! After a long day of work for both of us, we met up for desert, her favorite. We ended up meeting at BJs Brewhouse for some tasty deserts. Coffee, Cokes, water, and sugar were had by all (no alcohol for those of you who were worried).  She and her man-friend Daniel had a huge chocolate chip cookie with ice cream on top and I had a beignet with ice cream, strawberries, and cinnamon.

  I thought about taking an "after" picture, but who wants to look at an empty plate? Sorry, for the shadows, but restaurant light is hard to work with, and busting on my huge camera to take pictures of food isn't great table etiquette. 

Michelle and I. Yea friends.

  I didn't realize that this picture was so blurry when I took it. Oops. Getting to visit with your friends and family when  you are on the road makes traveling so much better. And it helps my attitude about being away from home. :)

  I found my battery charger for my camera, by the way. It was one of those things where I asked God, "I have no idea where the charger is, but you do. Would you let me know where it is?" A few days later God said, "Check your back pack." Low and behold that is where it was. Thank you God, for knowing the number of hairs on my head, and where my camera battery is located. You are even in the small things. 

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Small Change, Big Impact

  Unbeknownst to me, my husband does not like our couch pillows. To tell you the truth I don't like them either. They were the decoration frustration purchase where you can't find what you are looking for but you know you need something decision. I thought they would be fun and were a little out of my comfort zone, so I took the plunge. To be fair to my husband, we weren't married when I bought them and wasn't consulted on the decision making.

  Now we are married and important things like throw pillows should be discussed. I feel like we have good communication within our marriage. We've always been able to talk to one another. Our conversation went like this:
Me: "How do you feel about our couch pillows?"
Husband: "They're ok. They're squishy."
M: "No, I mean do you like them?"
H: "Not really."
M: "Me either! I'm buying new ones!"
H: "Ok." Husband never looked up from his computer the entire conversation.

  So off I went to find the perfect throw pillows for our couches, which was harder to find than I expected. One of the problems I ran into was trying to find pillows that my husband will like.  They are as follows:
   1. Not ugly
   2. Not girly
   3. Fluffy and squishy
   4. Soft

  You wouldn't think that this would be too terribly hard to find, but it was. I must tell you first that my husband is an artist. He majored in graphic design and draws, paints, creates, designs, and makes life look beautiful. He looks at life much differently than I do as a non-artist, and that is one of the things I love about him. But I was completely alone on my pillow search mission. He was home working on a website that he is building for a client, so, of course, I went shopping. We also need a coffee table, and I was more than happy to go hunting.

  After about 5 hours, I think I found what we were looking for. Here's the before and after.



  I think I really like the look of the new pillows. Our couches and chair are brownish red, and it can be really hard to match things to it. The frame is black cedar, so I tried to bring out the trim with the pillows.  And this is the most comfortable chair in the world. 

  Here is the coffee table that we bought from Kirkland's of all places. Who would have thought? The table is a bit small, but it came with 2 side tables, which we also need. It will come in on Monday, so Husband can put it together for me! I also bought the pillows with that swirly pattern on it to mimic the rounded edges of the tables. 

  I'm also thinking of trying to find a bright teal blue pillow and maybe a mustard yellow one. I think it would add a pop of color since our living room is slowly becoming monochromatic. All in due time. Maybe I can make my own pillow cases and reuse the old pillows we don't like. I think I'm reaching here.