Monday, August 31, 2009

Welcome Print.

My mom recently gave me a print from Two Poodle Prints on Etsy. I love it and am eyeing other prints from the shop.

I couldn't get a good picture of it because of the glare (see below), but here is an image from Two Poodle Prints so you can see its cuteness.

It's now in the perfect location in our entryway. Our door is over where the light is coming from in this picture:

Hopefully people will feel extra welcome in our home now!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Mam's Sno-balls.

Eureka! Thank goodness it is hot in Houston most months out of the year, because we just found a super tasty New Orleans style sno-ball place! We used to go to Casey's snowballs all the time in Austin when we were in college. This place is very similar and is a heck of a lot closer!

(photo: mam's facebook page)

I got the orchid cream vanilla flavor (it is one of their top sellers). I don't really know how to describe the taste except for utter deliciousness. I had to take a picture of its pretty purple color. Yum!

Justin got the chocolate flavor, which is the same one that he used to get at Casey's. It took us back to old times! I used to always get the wedding cake flavor from Casey's. Mam's has it too, and it may be the next one I get. I am already planning my next trip back. They also have a cute dog sno-ball where they put chicken broth over ice. Riley came with us, but we didn't get him one -- I know, we are bad parents.

While we were eating, I noticed a little restaurant across the street. You may have to click on the picture to see it, but the place has "Chinese Food and Fried Sea Food." Is that not the weirdest combination? And, it's not just regular sea food -- it's fried sea food. Don't go in there asking for grilled or blackened fish.

Riley was tuckered out after his big Mam's outing.

Heidi "the Performer" Montag.

I know I am a few days behind on commenting on Heidi Montag's performance at the Miss Universe pageant, but I can't let it slide. It's no secret I am a fan of The Hill's, but Heidi and Spencer ("Speidi") drive me bonkers. Heidi's Miss Universe "performance" was no different. On the upside, at least her flesh-toned bodysuit matches her husband's creepy flesh-colored beard.

I saw a great clip of Anderson Cooper on The Soup this weekend discussing the production.

Best line: "If God has the time to work on this production, and that's the best He can do, we are all in trouble." Love it!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Rachael Ray (II).

So back in February I had a post about Rachael Ray, and asked why it always sounded like she needed a cough drop. Well, tonight she was on David Letterman and evidently she had a cyst on her vocal cord. This is probably old news, but she had it removed.

I feel slightly bad for making fun of a medical issue. But at the same time, I am slightly relieved to know that it wasn't just how she talked -- that there was a legit reason why her voice was so raspy (beyond having 247 tv shows).

P.S. How miserable does her dog look?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Chandelier Love.

Recently, I have been eyeing Restoration Hardware's Pearson chandelier:

I love its simplicity plus the little bit of glam with the crystal at the bottom.

I pulled up the webpage about 10 times on Saturday to ogle it. Then, we went to a client's house for dinner that night and she had it in her dining room. I pretty sure that means it's meant to be, doesn't it?

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Rudy's (and an update).

Last weekend we picked up an air compressor from Justin's parents so we can re-paint a craig's list find (before and after pictures to come once we get it painted). On the way out to their house, Justin finally got to eat some Rudy's bar-b-q.

I'll have a post soon with his new "decor" contribution to our bedroom.

As an update to my post from Friday, my mom is still sore, but doing better each day. We took my grandma to an emergency clinic Saturday morning, and thankfully she doesn't have shingles. She was having a terrible allergic reaction to something, but we are still not sure what it was. It could have been food, medicine, pollen, etc. I am so thankful they are both on the mend.

Friday, August 21, 2009

A not so great start to the weekend . . .

My grandma came into town to help take care of my mom who had surgery today (she is doing okay). After getting my mom settled back in at home, my grandma starts coming down with shingles!

Then, Justin and I go to grab dinner, and on the way back home, we get in a wreck after some girl (who is not paying attention -- and "thought she was in the right lane") turns into us.

My grandma's shingles are now spreading pretty badly, so tomorrow morning we are waking up early to take her to the emergency clinic so that she can get some medication.

And, I have a brief due on Monday.

Serenity now, serenity now. Please let this weekend get better . . .

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Houston Restaurant Week.

Here are some pros and cons from the places we enjoyed during Restaurant Week. While the food has been great, I have definitely gained a few pounds!

Vic & Anthony's Steakhouse

  • Mac and Cheese (my heavens, this stuff is pure gold)
  • Mushrooms
  • Tasty steak (of course)
  • Phenomenal croissant bread pudding (no raisins, delicious caramel bourbon sauce)
  • We had reservations, but we still waited over 45 minutes for our table. In full disclosure, we requested a specific server, but still . . .
  • Feeling extremely full after over-indulging.
V&A was the first place we tried out and it has been my favorite place, hands down.


We didn't eat off of the RW menu at Gravitas. We are rebels, I know.


  • Great scallops
  • Good bread pudding with a nice caramelized crust on top
  • Took forever to get drinks
  • Food was decent, but nothing spectacular
  • Super loud inside (this is nothing new there)

  • Eating with Meagan and Jeremy
  • The decor was great:
  • None of the food was worth mentioning in the pros
Del Frisco's

  • Great dinner salad with avocado dressing (and hunks of avocado) and bacon
  • Delicious steaks
  • Mediocre bread pudding
  • Valet parking took forever
Our waiter at Del Frisco's told us that they (and some other restaurants) were extending RW for another week. I don't know if my pants can take another week -- they are already tighter!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


We donated tons of clothes and (my shoes) to Goodwill this weekend. The huge box behind the bags was also filled with goodies.

It felt great to clean out our closet and some bins that were under the bed. I tried to convince Justin that for every piece you donate, you get to replace it with something new. He didn't buy it. Heck, I would even go for a "every 5 articles you donate, get 1 new" type deal. But I doubt he will go for that either.

Along those lines, J. Crew is having an extra 20% off final sale items + free shipping through Wednesday . . .

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Bedroom Update.

So while our bedroom is far from being done, we accomplished getting it painted this weekend! As you will see, we went through a bunch of grays to find the perfect color.

Thankfully for people like us who can't make a decision based off the little paper paint swatch from the store, Benjamin Moore has new pint sized samples available for $6.99.

In the picture below, we tried Pigeon Gray (the lighter gray/blue color on top and again on bottom), Deep Silver (the darkest swatch), and Silver Fox (the small more brownish swatch right by the headboard and right next to the window). All colors are Benjamin Moore.

Once we got the colors up, we realized Pigeon Gray and Deep Silver were too blue. We both loved Silver Fox, but it was too close to the headboard color -- and I wanted more contrast.

We got three additional samples, which we put over the previous ones. The swatch by the headboard over Silver Fox and Deep Silver is Sterling Silver (the color we ended up choosing). The swatch over the lower Pigeon Gray is Silver Dollar. We also tried Stormy Monday, which is not pictured, but it is very close to Silver Dollar.

Here they are again in different light. The big swatch on the left is Sterling Silver -- we wanted to be sure that was the right color.

Here's a shot of the room in progress.

And as always, a picture of Riley helping us with the project. His nose was under the paper.

Once the floor became to uncomfortable for our helper, he moved to the bed.

After the first coat -- love it! (Excuse the ladder.) Both of our windows are open, so the opposite wall is getting good sunlight in this picture.

Here is the bed against the wall. It is just as I hoped it would turn out. And, sorry for not making the bed -- I didn't feel like it.

Our duvet cover hasn't arrived yet, but we should receive it next week. Here is a swatch of it, our headboard, and the paint. I am digging it.

I am thrilled with the way it turned out! Our bedroom is fairly large (13.5' x 18') not counting our sitting room, so this darker color really helps it feel more cozy. I can finally see it coming together. I can't wait to get it all completed!

Pure Design.

I love the HGTV show Pure Design. Samantha Pynn hasn't designed a room that I haven't coveted. I say all the time "I wish Samantha could come and help us with the house." Here are some inspiration photos:

The photo wall in this living room is amazing.

Simple, modern, clean bedroom. The fabric on the chairs is great!

The pillows in this kitchen seating area are so fun.

The following pictures are from an episode that really inspired our bedroom. (Pictures to come later.) The homeowners had a very large bedroom, but Samantha divided into zones and turned it into a "luxurious boudoir." I have tried to carry that same "divide and conquer" idea in our bedroom.

We fell in love with the bed when we saw it on this episode, and went out an ordered it when Crate and Barrel was having a sale. There wasn't a great picture of it on the Pure Design website, so you'll have to stay tuned for seeing close ups in our room.

I love the desk in this room (and I recently bought one off of craigslist that is waiting to be painted white). And Samantha is a fan of the Jules tables from Crate and Barrel -- she has used them in several rooms. I am also a big fan (you can see them in our living room here).

I love the wallpaper and the chairs in these dining rooms.

This living room is lovely and seems so livable.

Love this bedroom and the trellis fabric on the chairs in the seating area (with the Jules table).

Okay, this is the last room. I love the gray and punches of pink!

(all photos: hgtv)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

5 things . . .

5 things I am thankful for . . .

1. Dreyer's Slow Churned Yogurt Blends in tart honey. I love Fage with honey, so this is essentially my favorite snack in dessert form.

2. That tomorrow is Friday and the office is having my favorite breakfast -- Einstein's bagels!

3. The "Cheating Death" segment on the Colbert Report. My favorite part is the intro to the segment where he is playing chess.

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Cheating Death - Diabetes Dogs, Chocolate Milk & Swearing in Pain
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical HumorMeryl Streep

You can see more Cheating Death clips here.

4. Houston Restaurant Week. Sadly, we have only been to one place so far (Vic & Anthony's), but we have plans for next week. I will be back with reviews of all of the tasty food (and my ever growing waistline).

5. Fresh Sugar Rose Lip Treatment. I previously blogged about the un-tinted version here. My review is still the same, but this one has an added bonus -- I love the sheer tint.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Riley + Pillows.

I have been a bad blogger recently, but I have lots to share . . . so bear with me! In the meantime, here is Riley modeling our new pillows for the daybed in our office.

I guess the mattress isn't as comfortable as the top of the middle pillow on the bed -- or it's Riley way of giving us his stamp of approval of the pillows.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Bathroom Renovation Update.

So I realize I have done a lot of talking about some fairly minor renovations we wanted to do in our bathroom (see e.g., here), but we finally made some real progress last weekend!

Here is a (not a very good) before picture. As you can see, there were 3 large mirrors spanning the length of our vanity, which is about 10 feet long. That has to be some kind of record for the longest vanity, doesn't it?

Here is a better shot of the wall-o-mirrors when we were playing around with the idea of 3 smaller mirrors.

Last weekend, we took the plunge and pulled down the mirrors. While our main goal was to pull those suckers down, we also wanted to make sure we didn't end up with a bunch of little mirror pieces in the process. Justin had the great idea to put contact paper over the mirror to help keep things together if there was any breakage.

Thankfully, we only had one crack throughout the whole process, which I thought was pretty impressive. Justin put shims up at the top of the mirrors and then just slowly worked the mirrors off the wall. I think this "slowly but surely" technique was really the way to go to prevent breaking.

Here is the first mirror down (and my super handsome husband)!

For some reason, I got a kick out of Justin's outfit. While there really is a lot to comment on here, my favorite was his old pair of dress shoes. When I asked why he chose those over his usual tennis shoes, his response was "they're leather, they're old, and they're comfortable." Well, there you have it.

Here are 2 out of the three mirrors down! You can see the one crack where the blue painters tape is.

And it wouldn't be a home improvement project without the help of Riley. He enjoyed laying on the contact paper backing. I love his curled-under paw.

Here is one of the new mirrors up:

And here are 2 out of the three mirrors and a sneak peek at one of the sconces.

Of course, we still have a way to go with getting the wall patched and smoothed, repainting the bathroom, and getting the sconces wired.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Wonderful Birthday Weekend.

On Friday night, Justin took me to Brenner's Steakhouse. They have the most delicious smoked cheddar macaroni and cheese. They serve it in a little sauce pot . . . I could have eaten the whole thing by myself, but I was nice and shared with Justin.

During the day on Saturday, Justin and I worked on some of the bathroom projects I have mentioned previously. Stay tuned for a post detailing our work. It is looking better! Our families came over during the evening and we enjoyed a great meal at Backstreet Cafe.

Then we came back to our house to open presents! Note the super cute Amy Butler paper in the lower right corner that Justin wrapped a couple of my presents in. He is good!

Of course, Riley was right there assisting me with opening all those presents.

I got some awesome things . . . including some house decorating items that I can't wait to show off once I get them displayed. And I got a great belated birthday present a few days later.

Then we had RJ Goodies cake, a tradition for over 20 years!

Thanks to all for making my birthday special. It was wonderful getting to spend time with everyone.