Thursday, August 30, 2012

week thirty four

Sorry everyone for neglecting my blog and all of yours this week but I have been sick and didn't get out of bed the last couple of days. When I wasn't sleeping I watched TV, mostly watched American Pickers and Teen Mom on MTV. I should have caught up on Project Runway instead but couldn't get myself to switch the channel...Regular blog posts will resume next week. Also looking forward to catch up on everyone's blogs next week as well. I will be leaving for a long weekend in Pittsburgh tonight, which will be highlighted by a visit to Frank Lloyd Wright's Falling Water...

Enjoy the long weekend even if it means the official end of summer is here!

Friday, August 24, 2012

kitten update

I have not been feeling well the last couple of days so I didn't finish my Yayoi Kusama post but instead leave you with some kitten photos. Unfortunately the cat family moved out of our backyard. I fed them Monday morning and in the evening when I got home after work they were all gone. Wednesday night just as I was about to fall asleep I heard a kitten desperately crying for her mother and sure enough I saw a black kitten run around our house. I guess he was checking all familiar places for his family. We went outside to try and catch him but to no avail. Try to catch a black cat in the dark. Hope he was able to find them...I am so sad that they left us, I was already getting used to the company and saw myself as a future cat mama. Maybe they will come back...

Have a great weekend everybody!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

vestibule - new diy floor

Sunday the 12th of August I finally painted the interior door frame of the vestibule and decided to lay the carpet tile, that I brought home from work about a year ago. They were all samples for one client and since we did not need them anymore I figured I could turn them into a nice looking carpet tile mosaic in our vestibule. I had already drawn up a sketch in Auto Cad how I wanted to position the tiles, now we just needed to make a decision on what tile would go where. We laid out the different tiles on the floor and worked up our pattern from there. That was actually the most fun part of the whole project.

Next step was drawing a line that was somewhat parallel to the front door. From there I laid my first row of tiles and then the next two. To make the tiles stick to the floor I bought a roll of  carpet tape, which is basically heavy duty double sided tape. Those three rows were pretty straight forward and didn't need much cutting but the rows on either door opening needed to be exactly measured and cut to size. I did not take any good photos of the process besides this grainy photo with my cell phone because I knew if I'd stop working I would call it a night...

All in all I spent about 4 hours on my knees and my legs were sore for three days straight but I think it was worth the pain. The new floor really makes the space look finished. Not looking too shabby for only spending $8 on the whole project. Next on my list is getting the vestibule door fixed up and re-hung and also installing new glass panels in the transom above.

Have any of you fun projects lined up?

Monday, August 20, 2012

week thirty three

Today starts another week. Can you believe it? If times keeps flying by like it has been so far this year Christmas will be here in no time...

Last week was full of surprises, actually six cute surprises. We discovered a stray cat with a litter of five little kittens in our neighbors backyard. The mother looked very thin so we started feeding her and the little bunch. They are still very shy but have come to realize that we mean no harm. We are trying to get a local organization to help us get all of them spayed and neutered so they can be either set free again or maybe adopted. P and I are still debating if we should keep one or two. I had a cat growing up and still miss the little munchkin...

During week two of my closet project I resurrected a bag, a black pointelle (?) sweater and a striped Marc by Marc Jacobs skirt, that I have owned for ages. On the other hand I already failed trying not to buy anything. I stopped at H&M with a friend yesterday and left the store with a mustard yellow scarf. I guess I have to prepare for fall ;)

This weekend I cleaned up the house a bit and found this old object I made with a friend out of old bottles and concrete. I used it as a candle holder at one point but now that it has broken in half I had to get rid of it. But I couldn't let it go without taking some farewell pictures.

Last but not least I visited the Yayoi Kusama exhibition at the Whitney. Sorry for misspelling her name twice on Instagram! I realized my mistakes after uploading the pictures but unfortunately you can't edit after it is up on the site. I will write about that experience a little more this week so stay tuned...

Have a great start into the new week!

Friday, August 17, 2012

another yard post - fire pits

This month I think I caught backyard fever and I just can't stop looking for inspiration for our future yard. Another think I love in yards are fire pits, who doesn't like to spend cooler evenings around a fire and roast marshmallows and make s'mores. I only discovered s'mores in my twenties so I still have a lot of catching up to do. How could I have lived without them for so long?

I love the simple fire pit that Morgan of The Brick House created. I guess I need to take a welding class soon. The possibilities are endless, I could also weld steel planter boxes etc...Ok, I don't really have time for that but it would be fun. Either one of my selection would be welcome in my yard, No 7 can even be used as a grill.

So who's coming over for a nice chat around the fire with a bottle of wine and roasted marshmallows? Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

cuteness alert

For the lack of finishing a post I will post some cute kittens instead. A stray cat had a litter of five in our neighbors backyard but they like to hang out in ours as well. The little black and white guy is super curious and last night I caught him on our deck. Maybe he wants to move in with us? P promised when we moved to our area, which has a lot of strays, that if I can catch one I can keep it. This little guy is asking for it ;)

Are you cat people or dog people? Or are you like me and like both?


Monday, August 13, 2012

week thirty two

Week thirty-two was pretty uneventful besides starting a new clothes project. I want to wear everything in my closet so I am using it to its full potential and not buy more things that get forgotten after wearing it a couple of times. That polka dot tee hasn't see any action for more than a year and I loved wearing it. It will be worn more often now. On Friday night we watched the New York Red Bulls play Houston Dynamo. The game was pretty slow but the Red Bulls managed to win 2:0 in the end...

The weekend was pretty relaxing but I also get some work done. I have painted the door frame in the vestibule and also laid the floor, which meant I was on my knees for about 4 hours yesterday. My whole body hurts but it was well worth it. I will show the vestibule next week, yesterday it was already too dark to take decent photos. Because I had so much energy yesterday I put it to good use and also painted an old table top white that I want to turn into a sewing/crafting table. More on that later as well...

What have you been up to last weekend?

Friday, August 10, 2012

NJoy - keep it pretty

It's Friday again and the weekend is almost here. Looking forward to sleep in on Sunday and maybe even get some work on the vestibule done. Time is ticking away and I have set my goal to finishing it before my parents arrival. If not maybe I can put them to work ;)

I have been racking my brain for a while to come up with an idea for a recurring column on the blog. Feel like I am all over the place when writing about my life, our house, what I love, and a column besides the weekly recap would be nice. The idea I came up with is NJoy where I want to share great things about the state I call home. Today it is even something that is going on in my neighborhood where I have seen all these signs pop up. Kids from a local elementary school created 50 different posters with slogans, in both English and Spanish, to encourage the neighborhood to beautify and clean up their environment. The campaign is aptly named Keep it pretty, Jersey City! I have found seven signs so far maybe I will discover the remaining forty-three soon.

Keep it pretty wherever you are!


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

long island city

As mentioned in my weekly recap on Monday I spend some time in Long Island City last Sunday. First me and the girls had brunch and after we finished eating we took a walk along the water. The park is called Gantry Plaza Park and you can still see reminders of the industrial past of LIC. Those cranes have been used to unload barges, the load was transferred onto trains that served all of Long Island via the Long Island Railroad tracks. The Pepsi-Cola sign used to sit atop a Pepsi factory which has now been replaced with highrise apartment buildings. There seems to be a lot of construction going on, I guess the easy access to Manhattan makes it a good location to live but one of my friends told me she looked at the prices for an apartment in that area and they do not come cheap by any means, they were even more expensive than her place in Manhattan. From the park you have a nice view of Midtown Manhattan. LIC is also home to the MoMa PS1 museum, which hosts Warm Up parties in the Summer. It's on my list for this summer and hopefully I am able to make it. I have been to the museum but not to any of their summer parties yet. Also on my list since moving to NJ is the Noguchi museum, can not believe I haven't visited it yet! And when researching for this little blog post I came across the SculptureCenter and Socrates Sculpture Park and had to add it to my list of places to visit as well. Looks like I have to venture out to Long Island City again soon...

Have any of you ever been to any of the places mentioned?


Monday, August 6, 2012

week thirty one

It's soooo hot and humid here my brain turned to mush and I have a hard time writing today's post. The heat killed my plan of finishing up my vestibule projects, although I have started painting the second door frame with an oil based primer but it still needs two layers of white paint. Of course I didn't even attempted to lay the floor but I have made a little drawing of how I want to lay the floor. Hopefully it cools down soon so I can finish painting and start working on the floor. 

The weekend got off to a pretty lazy start with me falling asleep at 8:30pm. I think the heat got the best of me, I nearly feel asleep while eating dinner. Saturday we biked a little bit along the Hudson and discovered that you can go on for miles and miles right along the water just north of us. In the evening we had dinner in NYC with friends. Sunday I met a bunch of my girlfriends in Long Island City for brunch. After our brunch we took a stroll along the East River and afterwards everybody went home except for me. I jumped onto the next East River Ferry to take me to Williamsburg where I met with P. The ferry let me off right at a flea market so we browsed it for a while, I spotted a gorgeous Mid-Century modern bar cart but knowing New York prices I didn't even dared to ask its price. After the flea market we escaped the heat and headed to the nearest bar...

Hope you had an equally relaxing weekend!

Friday, August 3, 2012

string lights

Another outdoor post this week. Some of you might already know by following me on Instagram or my recent my week posts that I might have a minor obsession with string light. Ok, I have only shown two photos but have taken so many more. In my opinion string lights are a perfect staple to light up outdoor spaces. Here are some of my favorite pictures on how people use string or other lights to create a nice atmosphere in their yards. Of course it works with balconies, fire escapes or even in a window too depending on what kind of space you have.

To get a similar look for your outdoor space or mine (a girl can dream right?) I did a little round up of my favorite string lights. We actually own No.3 in the clear version and used to hang it from our big umbrella to cast some light on our table for late night dining or just talking. I guess once the backyard is done, hopefully next year, I should host a big bbq party and invite all of you.  Have a great weekend whatever your plans are! Mine are definitely finishing up what I started last weekend...

*If anybody knows the source of the photo please let me know. Tried to find it to no avail. I like to give credit where credit is due.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

dreaming about a backyard

I think I have mentioned it before that our backyard is more like a concrete jungle than a place you want to spent your time. The name says it all, 99.9% of the backyard is covered in concrete. And if that is not already bad enough it is not one consistent slab but instead various slabs, with different heights, that have been poured over the course of decades. Big tripping hazard! The oldest parts have cracks through which the only green in our yard started to sprout. Even nature agrees with us that this yard needs to be greener! 

There is also a small deck, right when you step out of the kitchen. The location would make it a great spot for al fresco dining but the size is way too small for that, even with just the two of us. Overall we never hang out in our concrete jungle and we would love to transform it into a lush green back yard with a nice sized deck so we can chill out after work or have friends over for bbq’s etc.

The plan is to get rid of all the concrete in the driveway and yard and replace it with simple pavers that lead from the driveway to a new larger wood deck, that is much closer to the ground or a paved patio and have the yard fenced in with a new wooden fence to give us more privacy. Around the perimeter of the yard we would like to plant flowers and maybe even a small vegetable garden.

I have been pinning away inspirational photos on Pinterest, here is my garden inspiration board, for a while now. There are almost 150 pictures on that board so I made a collage with some of my favorites. 

What would be your perfect backyard oasis?  


*If anybody knows the source of the photo please let me know. Tried to find it to no avail. I like to give credit where credit is due.
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