Wednesday, February 29, 2012

our home: dining beneath the stars

well sort of.

Crisp Architects traditional porch

Timber Framed Screened Porch modern porch

its wednesday!! i can't believe how quickly this week has flown by.  i know i shouldnt be wishing life away, but i just love weekends. they are the best afterall.

good news friends! we won the bid on the house!  i felt like dancing in my office when husband called with the news.  we are one step closer (again!) to be homeowners.  i have a really good feeling about this house. its newer & we did all the "inspection work" that we could while there - our inspector gave us tips to help.  and after all the inspecting, we didnt find anything wrong that we couldnt fix with a simple hand tool.

so in the meantime of paperwork and waiting, i've decided to dream more and more about all the design possibilities our new little investment has, mainly in the sunroom. husband and i decided that the sunroom would make a great dining room for us, mainly because it has tile flooring and what the builder called the "formal dining" has carpet, which in my book is a big problem, especially when kids & food are involved. back to the sunroom though, the two exterior walls are all windows, allowing lots of natural light to pour in during the day, but features a nice ceiling fan to keep things cool on those extra sunny days. 

i've thrown around alot of ideas in my head of how i want to design the sunroom.  i want to be sure to let the sunshine flow but still make it feel as though your inside.  do i go french bistro with pops of flowers, pale pink, and fun french items? or do i go a more bold route with middle eastern style flairs and lots and lots of color?  the choices seem to be endless.  i do want to be sure to include some tealight candles on the table & some little bud vases along with a festive table cloth & placemats.

does your dining room exude any particular style? if so, what is it and what led you to that choice?

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

our home: this is what dreams are made of

or atleast in my opinion.

happy tuesday friends! the weather here in texas has been unbelievably friendly the last several days. typically the end of february brings thoughts of possible icy weather or just miserable cold temperatures. but highs have been in the 70s and i couldnt be more thrilled. so thrilled that i'm wearing capris today. can you believe it? capris in february. in texas! last february we had an ice-pocalypse & everyone was beyond miserable for quite some time. so this is pleasant change. 

while the weather has been cooperating, husband and i have also been doing lots of house searching in this past weekend.  can i tell you how stressful house searching is?  i think i'm over what everyone calls the fun part of house hunting.  as i know i should be patient, i'm to the point of "i just want a house already!" attitudes.  we managed to find a couple that we were totally pleased with & one in particular i'm absolutely over the moon for.  the bad news was that there was another bid on the home so we had to place a bid as well. now its just a matter of waiting to find out who has the higher bid.  (pick me pick me!)

the house instantly felt like home walking through the front door & gallons of sunlight poured through all the windows, warming my skin and bringing a smile to my face.  this is home i thought.  with a quaint kitchen, perfect for whipping up dinners for husband and i or baking a dozen cupcakes for a party, it felt the way a kitchen should feel. plus the countertops and cabinets were beyond amazing!

oh and did i mention the sunroom? it has a sunroom!  husband and i think maybe that rather than a fourth bedroom they made it a sunroom with grande windows and tile floors, this room is my idea of a dining room! eating among all the sunlight, yet with the luxuries of ceiling fans and air conditioning to keep us cool during the summer months' unforgiving temps.  i can see husband and i, along with our friends and family, dining back there, eating scores of different foods while the stars twinkle one side of the window and echos of laughters are heard on the other.

dont forget to include the high ceilings, the gas fireplace or the huge master bedroom.

this is my house!  keep you posted if we get it.  

Monday, February 27, 2012

eatery challenge #1

learning and playing with betty has become of my most favorite pasttimes. i think husband is in agreeance on this one.  a few of my favorite apps include: instagram (most favorite!), urbanspoon & just recently foursquare.

i'm taking it upon myself (and maybe forcing husband) to start trying more off the beaten path eateries. by that i mean no name brand style eating.  first it makes life more interesting, but most of all, it allows us to discover new, yummy, and different foods than we arent used to.

so i'm taking a pledge. kind of like molly did.

- must be non name brand. chilis, pf chang's, etc dont count
- must include photo(s) and description of food at each place
-eatery can not be used twice in posts
- overall rating of eatery

sounds like fun right???
to get this started:
(pictured above)
a very simple & cheap! taqueria
menu ranges from street tacos to quesadillas
& even includes gringo (white man!) tacos
i melted immediately when i saw their offerings of street car tacos and opted for something simple - 2 barbacoa tacos
at only $1.25 a piece i knew this was my kind of establishment
we added a side of rice ($1) & chips and salsa ($1.50) too.
drinks were the icing on the cake. jarritos! seriously.
include some drug cartels and i was deep in the heart of mexico (jk!)
husband enjoyed barbacoa, pastore & some other taco i cant remember at the moment, all which he thoroughly enjoyed.
tacos came basic (corn tortillas and meat)
& a dressing bar was a free for all
cilantro, lime, onions, pico de gallo
& countless salsa for the picking.
so if youre in the area and need a quick cheap taco fix,
el taco h. is just for you.

would i eat there again?!
heck yeah man! already saving my pennies for it. :)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

sometimes the greatest things are worth the wait

and the hardest to find.

monday was a terribly discouraging day.  we had home inspections, (which i highly recommend anyone buying a home to invest in). to keep things short, it did not go like we had hoped and planned for.  there more things wrong with the house then husband and i were willing to deal with, both monetarily & time wise.  sadly, i dont think the current owners ever did anything to really take care of their home, which is going to cause them great frustrations with any future attempts at selling their home.

so we are still on the hunt for our house.  this weekend we are getting back out there with a new list of homes in hand ready to find the right one for us.  and like i've always been taught, everything happens for a reason. whether we see it now or fifteen years from now, there is a reason we arent supposed to have that house. 

it really is frustrating and upsetting, but i know there is one out there and its just waiting for us to find it.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

our home: update + the backyard

update time:  the house is ours.  minus signing closing papers.  the seller agreed to all the paperwork, signed off & we are on to inspections, appraisals and signing a million pages about 4 times each. we expect to close around march 27 give or take a few days. we couldnt be more excited. the dream of finally moving out of our apartment is becoming more real each day.

its time for window shopping new furniture ideas, browsing sites like houzz (my new favorite site and obsession!) for inspiration, ideas and places to find the items you are looking at. seriously people, i could spend hours upon hours on this site.  it even has a mobile app which make it 10 times better.  but on to more fun things, the backyard! tuesday i posted about my ideas for our entry way - today is all about the backyard. 

i've always wanted one of those super dreamy backyards that most fantasize about & only few have. canopy sitting areas with plush outdoor sofas, a high tech outdoor kitchen area & of course a little fireplace to stay warm during chilly months and roast marshmellows.  heres a few of the backyards im swooning right now.

oceandesigner contemporary landscape
Decorate by Holly Becker and Joanna Copestick eclectic patio

Landscape Design - Build contemporary landscape

Landscape Design - Build  landscape

what does your backyard look like? any special features?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

our home: the entry way + an update

our home is becoming more and more of a reality.  its kind of crazy to think about. we found a realtor last wednesday & found the home of dreams saturday. crazy!!!! we never thought we would go out on our first home tour and find the home that we are exactly looking for. it typically takes people weeks or months to find the home they are looking for.  dont get me wrong. husband and i looked at a jillion homes on the computer before narrowing them down to the handful we even wanted to look at in person. and thats after physically driving by some of them by and realizing that the home was what not we were looking for.  and whats better, is this home wasnt even on our "favorite" list because of one little architectural feature we didnt think we would like, but seeing it in person just made this home even more wonderful for us.

we are still going through the process of paperwork & typical house buying stuff, but if all goes according to schedule we could be moving in at the end of march! yikes! i havent thought about packing yet, but i better get started.  while i'm still waiting to start the packing, i figured i would share a little inspiration for our future entry way.  now a days, its hard to find a home our size with a real entry way. we got lucky! and so i want to make it extra welcoming and warm when guests come over, maybe give a little french feel.  heres a few ideas i'm thinking about..

ASID Showcase House traditional entry

Jim Fora contemporary entry
Noe Valley Entry contemporary entry

things in our entry way would include:
a coat and/or shoe rack
a little chair or bench for shoe removal
a sideboard table for flowers and maybe a little basket for candies or keys
and a lovely picture of paris that is currently residing in my dining room. 

do you have an entry way in your home? what kinds of things does yours feature?

Monday, February 13, 2012

our weekend: possible success + a party

it was an adventurous weekend to say the least.  if you read my last post, you would know that husband and i decided it was time to find a house to call our home.  its been a daunting and very stressful last week.  between the pre-appoval (which ended successfully!) and the house hunting saturday, our little home is becoming more and more of a reality everyday.  living the american dream i must say. 

we found a home that we are absolutely in love with and our approval limit even gives the thumbs up for. we actually even put in an offer.  it is absolutely perfect. the colors, the size, the floorplan, everything. it has so much potential as our future home.  now begins the negotiations (which i dislike) and all the other "fun stuff" that goes along with buying a house.

husband is actually going to see our realtor today about the sellers counteroffer, so i'm crossing my fingers that all goes smoothly and we can all come to an agreeable amount that we are both happy with.


we celebrated my dads birthday saturday here.  always fun and always delicious.  hibachi is indeed one of my favorites.
we shopped for a baby shower gift. 
we slept alot - well i did.  i twisted my ankle saturday househunting and the pain was super intense. nothing a good pain pill couldnt help.
we watched the grammys and i swooned over adeles performance. i love her. shes so humble and amazing.

what did you do this weekend? something fun i hope!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

home sweet maybe?


husband and i have decided its the perfect time to begin looking for a home (between the crappy market and interest rates being really, really low). and by home i mean house. our own house.  no more renting or leasing. no more apartments. no more tenants above you or sharing a wall with a weird neighbor.  its time!

we recently (like yesterday!) paired up with a relator and begin the process.  we talked about all the things we want and do not want as well as the general process.  its very exciting for us. 

saturday we are going to go on a home tour so we can get a feel of different neighborhoods and the options that they have as well as look at a few homes we may be interested in.  i can't wait. 

we started the pre-approval process last night as well. talk about nerve racking.  i think anytime alot of money (and a house is a lot of money!) and credit and all that begin to be talked about, i get severely anxious. its not that im not an overspender or have shoddy credit, its just the waiting game that drives me batty! and the economy in the state that its in doesnt really help either.  we should hear back today from the mortgage people & then its on.

i hope to keep you all posted with pictures and news of our home buying process because this is the hugest step in my life, besides getting married. and that was stressful.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

a calendar - february 2012

i know we are already seven days in but i needed a new calendar. and figured i would share..

the iris is the flower for february.
kiss lots, hugs more, and love always.

Monday, February 6, 2012

our weekend + #febphotoaday: part 1

happy monday friends!!!  this past weekend was absolutely terrific and i wish it didnt have to end, but being lazy doesnt pay the bills.

we spend most of our weekend reorganizing the apartment, which included a fun filled trip to IKEA. the land of pyschos and swedish things.  we got us a new bookcase, which i dont even have the slightest idea why we waited as long as we did, but i'm absolutely over the moon in love with our new bookcase.  eep!

we also spent quality time with family and enjoy lots of awesome food.. my mom has recently become the newest addict to pinterest. but who isnt these days? well besides normal people? lol just kidding.  back to her being an addict, she found a handful of super rocktastic recipes she made for our little dinner party saturday, and i will definitely will be sharing them in an upcoming post.. yummy delicious brisket tacos and melt in your mouth brownies. yum yum!

and my latest venture has to do with the ever so amazing instagram.  i joined up with lots of others in the #febphotoaday challenge & above are my photos going in to day 6 which will be happening this evening. who knows what dinner has in store for the husband and i.. have a few errands to run tonight, so it could potentially come out of a swing open window..  anyone else joining in on #febphotoaday??

oh and ETSY? its busier than ever!! yesterday i cranked out five orders and still have what feels like a million open.  one of these days i will catch up... no complaining from me though.. this is extra anniversary trip and house down payment money.  and i love every minute of it.

what was everyone up to this weekend?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

oh betty how i love you.

can you tell i'm addicted to my iphone yet?  i feel as though the blog has lost my heart since dear betty came along.  yeah i decided to name her betty. 

we love taking pictures and enjoying all that she has to offer me..  so much so that i decided to do the #febphotoaday and todays picture was your view.  and above is my view from my office window.  i like it. alot.. the bell tower standing proudly in the distance among the trees makes for a splendid view when the weather decides to cooperate...  if you want to follow my #febphotoaday - follow me on instagram: @cheersbethani

i'm still learning some tricks on the phone and finding new apps that i can't live without.  its a whole new world for me.  a very addicting world..

betty's new clothes arrive any day. hopefully tomorrow.  eeps. 

i hope everyone is having a wonderful wednesday, wherever your might be.