Thursday, December 31, 2009

Today is a Better Day

Thanks for your kind words about Anders. Since I'm far enough out of the funk that I was in, I can post about happier things now. :)

Here is Moonshadow, my girl kitty:

And Clementine, my boy kitty:

I just posted the "Moonshadow Broom Ride" video on flickr, too.

They are keeping us entertained, to say the very least.


Did you know that tonight is a Blue Moon?

Joe and I might go snowshoeing after it gets dark. For Christmas, I got Joe (and myself) showshoes, which are sure to get a lot of use over the coming years. If you've never tried showshoeing, and are fortunate enough to live in a snowy state, I suggest you rent a pair (maybe from Rutabaga if you live near Madison, WI) and try it out. It's a great way to get outside when the temperatures drop and you can't garden or work in your garage or go to outdoor concerts.

But since it will be about 10 hours before we venture out, I've been finding things to do indoors on the last day of 2009.

I'm currently taking a break from sanding wood. Wood that will soon be painted and block printed with new designs for 2010. Since I'm temporarily only working part time, I thought it would be good opportunity to make some key racks. Something I swore I wasn't going to do again. But if I've learned anything about myself in the past year, it's that get bored with things quickly and hate commitments and feeling like I have to do something. So, lately I've just been going with the flow and doing whatever seems appealing at the time. And right now, creating new patterns for the racks seems rather appealing. Especially since I haven't touched my art stuff in almost a year, and it's not something that I have to do anymore.

Okay, well off I go to paint! I just bought some new colors, which I will most likely enhance a bit with other colors. I can't help but to mix things! Does anybody else have a serious obsession with mixing? Cereal, beverages,'s all fair game.


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

RIP, Puppy.

I'm having a really hard time with this post.

Today I bought a computer. Came home, danced around the house and sang the "we have a computer" song, sang the "Now I can show everyone our new kitties!" song, and then sat down to start editing and posting photos of said kitties.

My phone rang. It was my mom. I've never, ever, heard her so sad, she was just sobbing and sobbing. My mom is very strong, and to hear her like this was very hard for me.

They had to put Anders down this morning. The dog I talked about in my last post.

I knew that it was going to happen today, but it didn't really affect me quite so bad until I heard my mom on the other end of the line. I guess I just tried to keep it at the back of my mind most of the day.

My mom kept saying how she had nobody to give her last bite of food to (something she started doing when his hips started getting worse and worse...she knew the end was near soon) and how he's just laying in a hole in the back yard. Ugh. I'm terrible when it comes to talking to people who are crying, because no matter the circumstance, I can't keep the lump from my throat or the tears from my eyes. And that's what's really doing me in now- knowing how much she is hurting over this.

(left: me and kevin with anders, within the first week we had him. right: me walking anders. i hated this photo till tonight.)

We got Anders when I was in 8th grade. I was 13. I remember the day my mom and brother brought him home. He was tiny, but had huge paws.

Over the years, he proved to be a great dog. He never barked. Never dug holes. Never chewed shoes. Didn't even stop the people who robbed my parent's house (okay...not so great...but goes to show just how loving he was).

He was fun to wrestle with. Fun to take for walks (he'd usually take me for the second half of the walk, grabbing the leash in his mouth and showing me the way home as soon as we'd turn around in that direction). Fun to chase around the yard. Always knew to be careful around babies and older people. Loved other dogs and cats. I could go on and on. He was a great companion.

I didn't think I was going to have this hard of a time with this. Geez, now I sound like my mom. But really...this sucks.

It's amazing how much animals can do for our well-being, isn't it? I will miss Anders very much. Hopefully I am back with a happier post tomorrow. For now I'm off to get some rest.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Holidays

Hi everybody!

I hope your holidays are going well.

We are at my parent's house and I was all ready to post photos of my kitties, etc. but then I realized that I switched my memory card in the camera this morning before leaving home. Dumb.

I didn't unwrap a computer this morning, which is okay because it wasn't on my list so I wasn't counting on one. What I did get was pretty great, though.

From Joe:
2 Van Morrison LPs
Pajamas (our new Christmas Eve tradition)
A new robe
AND, my favorite...he wrapped a pair of tickets to a hockey game (Minnesota Wild vs. Detroit Red Wings) in an LP that we already had...trying to be sneaky and making me act like I was excited to open something that I knew we had. Anyway, the hockey game happens to fall on my birthday, which is awesome!

The story behind it was that Joe was supposed to go on business to MN over my birthday. I was really looking forward to going with and shopping in Minneapolis and St. Paul while he was at work. But then he found out that he wasn't going to go to MN anymore, that he had to do some other cities instead, which I wouldn't be able to go to. I was bummed, but it was okay. He felt bad and so he got me hockey tickets so we had a reason to go to Minnesota over my birthday (not that we wouldn't have a reason without them...this just makes it more fun).

I should add that we have been to the XCEL Energy Center before, for our anniversary, to see Neil Young, and that's where the Minnesota Wild plays.

So one month till I get to go to Room and Board, West Elm, IKEA, and all the cute little shops downtown!

Any suggestions?

From my parents, I got some really great books, along with some other useful stuff (hello, bench grinder! my tool collection is growing quickly!). The books I got, which I'm very excited about:

Attracting & Feeding Backyard Birds
A-Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants (yes! 1097 pages)
A Practical Guide to Growing Vegetables Fruit & Flowers.

They will definitely prove to be useful over the next few decades.

Well, for now I should be going. I wish I could write enough posts to pop up over the next couple weeks, but my childhood dog, Anders, is very excited about our kitties and wants to be their friend, but unfortunately, they do not feel the same way about it. So I should help Joe keep Anders away for now. Poor pup.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Still the Same

Hey everybody!

Hope you are all doing well.

I have lots of fun stuff that I wish I could share, but I am still without a computer.

Just wanted to check in and say I'm still here and miss you all! I am seriously jonesing for some blog-reading and google-searching. Like, bad. It's really weird not to have answers at my fingertips anymore.

Can't wait to show you the kitties we found! Hopefully by next week, although some recent circumstances are going to push the computer-buying back again. One day...

Alright, well off I go. Take care and enjoy your holidays if I don't get back here before then!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


posts without photos are boring.
library keyboards are germ infested. and greasy. ew.
contacts that are glued to eyes that feel like deserts is a drag.
grocery shopping in high heels and then wheeling lumber around in those same high heels is something i am not looking forward to, but it's next on my list.

but. thank Real Simple for the Real Simple Thanksgiving Guide from my 2008 magazine.

that's what i'm using for our menu on thursday.

not my usual style. i have to thank the fact that i don't have a computer for that one (i'm not being sarcastic, here)...because if i HAD a computer, i would probably have 84 print outs scribbled scrap paper recipes all over the house (printer broken).

i like the fact that i don't have as many choices right now. that's one good thing about having a broken computer. because choices and me are like two intersecting roads having a green light at the same time.

anway, i hope everybody has a nice thanksgiving. i am thinking about buying a computer on black friday. not sure if that's a good or bad thing yet, but i would to be able to upload and post photos again. that's the thing i miss the most, i think.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Hi Hi Hi

Hey everybody!

I am well into week 2 without a computer at home...almost to the 3 week mark! I'm thinking that I will get it fixed when I reach a month.

I miss reading all of your blogs! But I have since been filling my time with other adventures...

I found 2 kitties on Monday. They were in a compost pile in my yard. I didn't realize there were 2 until the first one was out for awhile, and then another came out. After visiting them numerous times throughout the day, and later showing Joe what I had found, I finally decided to bring them inside around 6:30 PM. I just couldn't leave them outside- they were shivering so bad! So now we have 2 kittens. Even though I have never...EVER...considered myself a cat person. They are cool, though. One is grey and poofy and one is orange. The grey one is kind of pitiful but is very sweet. The orange one is quite adventurous and likes to get into trouble. I estimate them to be about 4-5 weeks old, but the grey one only weighs 3/4 of a pound. She is tiny! We're trying to bulk her up. Anyway, we aren't set on any names yet, but I hope to share photos soon.

Other news...well, there's not much. None, actually. I finished painting the kitchen, but that's about it. Lately I've just been working a bunch. Trying to save up for some house stuff!

Well, speaking of work, off I go. Hope everybody is doing well.

Saturday, October 31, 2009


R.I.P. Grandpa.

I will miss you dearly.

Ice Cream Guy
Originally uploaded by ErinLangNorris/YellowCanoe

You were, and always will be, one of my favorite people.

I'll do my best to carry on your great sense of humor.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


my computer died yesterday.

at first i was mad, but now i am considering it a favor.

the amount of time i spend online is disgusting, which is something i have been well aware of for some time. but since i don't have a computer now, i am realizing even more just how dependent i am upon it.

the internet certainly lives up to it's name; it is truly a web.

it's funny how disconnected and isolated i felt when it died. and ironic how equally free and re-connected i felt. does that even make sense?

i really believe that i have an internet addiction, as lame as it may sound. i have wasted countless hours in a day collecting photos that inspire me. what do i even do with them? look at them and dream? yeah, sure. but what does it even matter when i'm not doing anything? i thought they were an inspiration, and maybe they are. but thinking about it more, i'm not so sure.

what is the point in collecting things for what could be if they never end up being?

anyway, instead of blabbing on and on, i just wanted to let you know where i was. i will probably check in a couple times a week.

i will get a new computer, but not right now.

for now, i will stop dreaming and start doing.

have a good week. thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, October 25, 2009


On one of my favorite scenic roads, there is a farm that is selling pumpkins, squash, Indian corn and gourds.

So Joe and I stopped for some on our way home from the hardware store and the apple orchard.

And then after I decorated with them, I decided that I wanted more.

Partly because I felt like more would look nice, but mostly because it's Sunday and on Sunday Joe watches football.

And I hate football.

So off I went, back to the farm, to get a few more.

Well, a few turned into like 30. But I enjoy having that many around. And I am going to give the small ones away on Halloween to the kids, if they want them. I always liked having small pumpkins in my room when I was younger, so I figure maybe they will like them too.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


At last. After 2 years of repetitive sifting, I have found the perfect N.

Initially I thought my criteria seemed pretty basic.

It had to be big. And by big I mean over 18" tall.
It had to be wooden or metal.
It had to be thick enough to balance on it's own semi-decently. Nothing flimsy was going to win me over, despite it's numerous attempts.
And it had to be a nice font.
Oh, and a good color.
Not too expensive, either.
A good color was in order, too. And though red is certainly not my favorite, I think it's perfect for this.

'Good things come to those who wait' isn't my favorite saying, but it always seems to hold true. I generally tend to go through great lengths to get exactly what I'm looking for. It probably drives Joe fact, I know it drives him crazy. But I think he's gotten used to it by now.

When I wait, I feel like I always have a greater sense of appreciation when I finally do find it. Now that I found my N, I can look for something else. Now I'm keeping a lookout for some neat casters. I'll find them soon, I'm sure.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

IKEA and CB2

We went to IKEA and CB2 yesterday.

I was able to keep it under $200 at IKEA! Of course there was more stuff that I wanted, but I stuck to the basics this time.

I'm most excited about my
CELEBER soy sauce pitcher (which will be used as a creamer for coffee rather than soy sauce) and the new planters for my plants (which have quickly outgrown their smaller IKEA planters). OH and I really like the FARGRIK cups, too (check out the price!). And the hangers. OOOH and how could I forget about my new throws for the couch?! Okay, so I'm pretty happy with everything I got. And I'm already planning my next trip. I am lucky enough to have an awesome husband who had great patience for the 3 hours we were there, but I think next time I'm going to go by myself. Because then I can stay for like 5 hours AND I can visit the same floor like 3 times without feeling bad.

Okay, well today is a really nice day out and probably the last one we're going to have, so off I go to clean the gutters! Have a nice week!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

3 years.

Joe and I celebrated 3 years of marriage a couple weeks ago.

Each year we try to take a fun picture.

Then we put it into our anniversary book that I made for us.

This photo was taken a bit after the date, because we had a lot going on that day and the weather/our schedules haven't cooperated much till a few days ago.

Hope things are going well with you!

Wednesday, October 07, 2009


Since moving in, I have refrained from decorating.

Until now.

I just couldn't resist the constant urge any longer.

Just a
small area so it doesn't get out of hand.

What's ironic about it is that Kim over at Desire to Inspire featured my crates not once, not twice, but three times in her "Flickr Finds" post. I didn't see it until a few minutes after I put this together! Thanks for the feature, Kim!

Anyway, I'm trying to keep everything in a closet until we have our walls painted and have our new couch.

Speaking of painting, I'm in the homestretch with our kitchen! I can't wait. Having 3 days off in a row is very helpful when it comes to this sort of thing.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Two Things

The DOKUMENT waste basket from IKEA makes for an excellent stick carrying bin after a windy evening.

It's easier than lugging a wheel barrow around and it's so much more Martha than toting a cardboard box. Especially when the cardboard box is stamped with beer logos. I think Martha probably drinks wine.



What kind of flower is this? I could probably look it up, but I was curious if anybody knew. I'm working on my plant, flower and tree knowledge.

Monday, September 21, 2009


Today I was finally able to begin painting the kitchen and dining room.

Photos to come, eventually.

We are going to Michigan on Thursday to visit friends. I'm hoping to find some stuff for the house while I'm there...they have some great shops.

Monday, September 14, 2009


Before I left for work yesterday, I visited the Morning Dove who decided to make her nest in one of our birch trees. She's very mighty and cute.

When I got home from work, we decided to cook out on our new grill. We were standing on the deck and a huge hibiscus bloom caught my attention from across the yard.

Knowing that it might be one of the last times I saw it this year, I figured I should get a photo, good camera or not.

Then I laid in the hammock to wait for the bats. There are 2 that have been coming to our yard. We've been watching for bats since we moved in and finally saw some a few nights ago. I really adore bats, even though most people think they are gross. Tonight we are going to watch a bat documentary that my penpal Chelle sent to me for Christmas last year.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009


Yesterday our hammock from arrived.

We quickly ran to the hardware store to pick up the...hardware...that we needed to hang it.

Luckily I researched hanging methods online before attempting to hang it, because Joe obviously did not. We won't get into that.

Unluckily I didn't pay attention to which drill bit I chose and I proceeded to get a huge bit stuck in our tree. Yes, I drilled into our tree. So bad, I know. Anyway, this was accompanied by lots of swearing and then storming into the house, followed by more swearing. I don't think I've been that mad in a LONG time. I pretty much thought my drill was fucked (sorry) since it wouldn't grab the bit tightly enough to get it out and I knew that we'd been waiting for this moment for so damn long. It was going to be the perfect way to end the long day.

After cooling down, I went out to try again. That's when I realized that I used the wrong drill bit. So off I went to drag out my chair, chains, drill, wrench, hammock, hardware, etc. out to the trees again.

Ten minutes later, we had a working hammock:

You can't tell, but we're both smiling in all of the photos. It was a great time.

Neither of us had ever really been in a tree hammock, but I have wanted one since I was really young. I've always had a fascination with them.

By the way, how do you pronounce "hammock"? ham-mock or ham-mick?

+ + +

I just checked on my flokati rug, and it's on it's way right now! It needs to be signed for, so maybe it will get here before I leave for work. Fingers crossed.

Friday, September 04, 2009


So I took the plunge...and just ordered a 10' round Flokati.

I say plunge because I've heard horror stories about these things.

But I've also heard that brushing it with a dog hair brush and raking it with a small wooden rake help tremendously.

Ordered from eBay seller vibrophil.

I laid down newspaper yesterday as a mock rug and decided 10 feet was the way to go.

Next on the "to buy" list:

Room Divider.
Console Table.
Floor Lamp.

As soon as I start my fall/winter job I will be able to buy all of this stuff! Well, not AS soon as, but a few weeks later.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Why Living in the Country is Cool, Part I.

So one of the many awesome things about living out here vs. living in Madison is that there are a lot more cool things to be found...for cheap.

Like this old wooden military box:

It's pretty solid and quite bulky. Probably the best $10 find to date. I found it at an Estate Remnant sale at a church about half a mile from our house. Everything there was super cheap...and they had A LOT. I bought a few other small things, but I only had 15 minutes before heading to work to shuffle through aisles and aisles of treasures.

I'm thinking about putting it on some casters and using it as a coffee table or something like that. We'll see how it looks with
the couch that I want to order from CB2. I have no idea when we'll find time to get to Chicago to test the couch out, so I'm pretty close to just ordering it and hoping for the best. Which is generally not my style, but with excellent reviews and my craving for a cool sectional, I just might take a leap. I mean, anything is going to be better looking than what we currently have. Our couches right now aren't that bad, but we don't like them and they are too big for our long and narrow living room (12'x22').

For now I am off to the paint store. My parents are coming this weekend and my mom was wondering if we wanted them to paint at all...then she said "well, you'll probably want to do that yourself though, right?". Haha, yeah right. I'm all for painting but I'll take any help I can get when it comes to large spaces and little time to do it myself.

PS- does anybody know what they used these big wooden boxes for? I always like to know the story behind my cool finds, but in this case, there was nobody to ask.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Heh. So Joe found a carpool, did I tell you that? I don't remember. Anyway, he commutes with 3 women from Mazo to Middleton Monday-Thursday and then on Friday he's on his own. Pretty sweet deal.

Anyway, one of the women is having this thing at her house featuring 7 or 8 artisans from the area on Saturday.

Since Joe is SO very thoughtful...ahem...he said something like "OH! Erin used to make things, blah blah blah, and she has lots of left over stuff since she's not actively selling right now."

Yes. I do have lots left over...all packed away in boxes...all in need of hooks or brackets or matte finish or something.

After much hesitation (mainly because I just don't have time for this sort of thing right now) and some persuasion from the other side ("oh, well I'll help you with things"...) I finished getting a little over half of my leftover stock ready.

I got up this morning to build a super quick display stand that holds 5 racks.

And all the other stuff laying around the stand are items that I quickly tagged this morning before heading off to work.

One thing that I do not miss about the handmade life is the stress that comes along with preparing for shows. Luckily Joe was able to help me quite a bit with this last minute shindig. He made most of my price tags and he also went to her house tonight to set everything up for me because I didn't get home from work till about 9.

Hopefully some of it sells. It would be nice to have a little extra money that I could do whatever I wanted to with and not feel guilty about it.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

And So It Begins

Our basement is considered half-finished.

I'm assuming that this area qualified for the "unfinished" part.

I knew it definitely had potential from the minute I saw it.

It's going to be my potting area.

I wish I could call it a potting shed, but since it's attached to the house, I suppose that's not really too accurate. I'll have to come up with a better name.

Anyway, after raking the grass clippings from the yard, I decided to rip out the carpet in this room. There is this NASTY dusty powder stuff all over underneath the carpet. Most of it is stuck to the cement...but as soon as that's done, I can move onto the next part. I can't wait till this area is's the only super-dingy area in the house and to be honest, it kind of creeps me out in there!

Monday, August 24, 2009


Today was my first day off after the move.

I left the house at about 8 this morning to get an early start on the errands that have stacked up over the length of the week. I went just about everywhere from the hardware store to the grocery store to the shoe store and then about 7 other places. I finally got back home around 3. Then I washed our car. That took about an hour and a half, but it was really nice to be able to wash it by hand and then vacuum it afterward. Can't really do that in an apartment.

After that I watered our flowers for the first time. The rain took care of them (me?) for the first few days, which was a huge help when settling in. It took an entire hour to water all of them, which was about what I'd expected.

I bought 150 feet of hose today. Of course I had to have an orange hose, so I paid extra for it. I am collecting things that are orange and blue for garage and yard accessories. I mentioned that awhile ago, I think. Joe likes the idea of those colors because they match the Chicago Bears. Yeah...that's what I was going for. And now that I'm sitting here typing away, I see that blogger claimed those colors as well.

Anyway, getting back on track here. While I was out, I stopped at the greenhouse and picked up these peculiar little plants called Living Stones, or "Lithops". Their story intrigued me just as much as their appearance. So I bought 3 of them. I figured I was on a mad spending spree anyway, so why not.

After I watered the flowers, I took a walk to the back of the yard near the monkey bars. We have grapevines tangled around them, which is really cool. I can't wait to try them.

Then on my way in, I decided to check on our new friend. The previous homeowners mentioned that sometimes there would be tree frogs that got into the hot tub. I figured they were just talking about leopard frogs or something like that, until a few days ago when Joe said that we had a frog. I ran over and saw that it was in fact a tree frog! So yeah. It's been there for awhile, in the same spot, just hanging out. I had to lift the cover to see it, he usually hangs off the side.

Tomorrow has a lot in store as well, so I'm heading to bed. Joe found a carpool, so now we get up at like 5:30 rather than 6:30. It's okay though, being up early is nice.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

New Entrance Area on Porch

So I hope you are ready for what this blog is going to turn into...

House projects galore.

I'm hoping to do a few DIY tutorials as well.

The first (very small) project that I did was rip out what the previous owners had in this area of the front porch:

I replaced it with my small bird house collection...

It's only temporary. We'd like to put a wall fountain here, but it will probably wait till the spring.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Home at Last

So we finally closed on Friday.

We couldn't be happier. Actually, to say that we are absolutely smitten almost feels like an understatement.

The previous owners had such an appreciation for their home and it really shows. They were very detail-oriented and certainly clever. Joe and I keep noticing all these small details that just make sense. It's really neat.

Our weekend has been very busy, cleaning and packing and unpacking and cleaning again. But living out here, where it's quiet and peaceful, has a very calming effect.

We are so very lucky to have families who were so proud to help us move. They really made everything easier and it was nice to have everybody in our home right away.

I have lots of things to say but I should really get going. We spent the morning taking it easy, sipping our coffee on the front porch and watching the rain fall.

I'll leave you with a photo but if you want to view the set I have it posted on flickr.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


It isn't often that I buy things from my Wists.

And it really hasn't been a frequent occurrence for my to buy anything at all over the past few years (i didn't end up buying the chopper thing i blogged about a few posts back). I did go through a short stint where I was buying lots of stuff last fall, but that's because I could for once, since I had a good paying job and extra cash.

Anyway, I added these shoes to my Wists some time ago:

The Commerce shoe by Naturalizer, via Zappos.

Today I went to check on them, just to be sure they were still there. And I realized they only had one more pair in a 6.5. And none in a 7, so I didn't have a backup-with-thick-socks option. Eek!

I decided that I should buy them, for various reasons:

1. They are yellow. I've been wanting yellow shoes for a long time.
2. They can be worn to my fall/winter job.
3. They can be worn to my spring/summer job (although i probably wont do that much).
4. They can be dressed up or down.
5. They were the last pair available, and I couldn't find them for sale anywhere else online.
6. I need new shoes, as soon as sandal season is over.
7. They would go good with my new house. Or at least that's what I am going to tell Joe when he finds out.

I had them shipped to my parent's, on the off chance that they didn't make it here before we skip a few towns over. My mom will bring them on Saturday when they come to help us shimmy on over to Mazo.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Yellow Guy

I saw this guy when I was downtown last week and it made me smile.

We only have 123 hours to go...but who's counting?

Joe woke me up at 6:45 this morning and one of the first things he said was "Is it okay if I start taking down the decorations today?" I told him no, but that he could clean his bathroom if he wanted. I'm sure that when I get home from work tonight at least 1 thing will be taken down, because it's probably eating at him that I haven't begun to do this part yet. Actually, I know it is. Maybe I should take a few things down before I leave for work, just so he doesn't go into busy-bee mode and take down the wrong things.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009


217 hours to go.

My excitement is slowly turning into an assortment of emotions...mostly all of them being good ones...but of course there is a sense of nervousness, among other things. My biggest hangup right now is that almost everyone is asking me WHY we would choose to move where we are moving, while they look at me like I have 3 heads or something.

I can understand where they are coming from. But I feel like they don't understand (nor care to understand) where I'm coming from. It's not the curious "why" that people's more of the demanding sort.

I don't have any regrets, because I know we are doing what we need to do to be happy. But you know how it goes when people rain on your parade.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

I Want This

I'm pretty picky when it comes to kitchen utensils and gadgets.

Most things you really don't NEED. Which is why I gave half of our kitchen stuff to Goodwill recently. (Everything I gave away had been a gift, but really- I don't need a smoothie maker when I have a blender and I don't need a pizza maker when I have an oven and don't make frozen pizzas anyway...)

But there are 2 things that I really want.

One is a juicer. I've wanted one of those for a long time now.

And the other is one of these:

(A Chef'n VeggiChop, via Amazon.)

For one, it's cute, and I usually only bring things into the house if they are cute (which is why Joe gets to come in.) Ha. Okay, just kidding- but seriously, it looks really well designed rather than just another cheap gimmick, which is a big reason why I want it. And two, I really like to cook, but lately I have been short on the time that I once had for that. My favorite meals all revolve around lots of chopping and dicing, which takes lots of time. So something like this would go a really long way for me. And at $29.99, I think it's a fair price for as much as I would use it.

I haven't bought anything new in ages, so I think it's time. When I get paid on Friday this is going to be shipping to my apartment with a quickness.


What are you up to today? I'm shopping around for homeowners insurance. Then I am doing some other house stuff, like packing and cleaning the apartment a little bit more and probably making a few other phone calls. I should go do that!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

I need to start taking more photos.

I blame it on not having the camera that I really really want (used to be Nikon D70, but I'm sure I will have changed my mind by the time I can buy one...).

Yesterday we went to a festival (Atwood Fest) and it would be been really great to have had a camera.

The day before was Joe's birthday, and it would have been nice to take photos of my nephew who was mesmerized by the cake that Joe's mom made.

I don't know. I just need to start taking more pictures and stop caring about my shitty camera!


Our house buying process started out great (as most things do.)

And then things started to suck. Joe has spend hours (seriously, hours...) on the phone each day with our loan company, trying to get things sorted out.

Long story short, our appraisal is finally scheduled (for tomorrow) so I guess we're finally moving along!

Trying to pretend none of this is happening and just move ahead with my thoughts, ideas and dreams. Which is totally not me...I don't tend to get excited about something until it's definite.

I've been thinking about the basement a lot and what I can do to make it feel like an area I want to be in. Our goal is to set up a glamorous space to entertain and hang out. It's the first area we want to work on and hope to have it finished sometime this winter.

Only 18 days till we move in!

Links for above photos:
1. Wallpaper by Graham & Brown, from the Umbra collection. $60/bolt.
2. Linear Strand Crystal Chandelier at ZGallerie, $349.
3. Pebble Table Lamp by West Elm, $149.
4. Selenite Tealight candle holder by Burke Decor, $25.
5. Woven Pendant at Clayton Gallery, $160.
6. Recycled Glass Candleholders at Clayton Gallery, $45.
7. Pablo Table Lamp at 2Modern, $220.
8. Bridges Floor Lamp at Chiasso, $328.
9. Circuit Clock at Chiasso, $58.
10. Kiki Table at Chiasso, $48.
11. Diamond Sculpture at Chiasso, $28.
12. Armitage Cocktail Table at Chiasso, $748.
13. Glam Pendant at Chiasso, $298.
14. Rustic Pedestal Table from Pottery Barn, $299.
15. Galerie Coffee Table from Crate and Barrel, $249.

I really like the linear chandelier and the Kiki table, so hopefully they come off backorder soon! I would buy them. The Armitage Table is way out of my league, and probably always will be, which is fine. Just trying to get some stuff together so I can show Joe how I want the basement to look.

Well that's all! Have a good day, see you soon!


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Basement Lounge

Originally uploaded by JAGwired

This is what I was talking about yesterday...a basement that's painted dark and actually looks like it has a place in the house without feeling forced. Nice and cozy and not cave-like. I really like the lighting, too!

I want to buy this lamp for the basement, which on sale over at Lamps Plus right now. But alas, I have to wait.

My mom and aunt are coming for a visit today, they should be here in about 2 or 3 hours. Am I ready? Ha, no. I still have lots to do. Then 2 of my good friends who I have known since grade school are coming the next day. So I'm sure between now and 2 days from now I will acquire a few new (or, new to me, at least) things. I decided that I can finally buy some stuff after months of saving all of my money for a house...because now we have to start getting things FOR the house. And thankfully I have an awesome mom who is a school bus driver and gets the entire summer off. She's been going to rummage sales galore and returning home with lots of great stuff for us. Which is so nice.

Okay, off to finish a few things before they get here!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Countdown Begins.

Hey everyone!

I hope that your summer is going well. Mine is flying by, and we haven't even done anything worth writing about.

Only one month until we close...I can't wait!

How pathetic is it that the only thing that I have worried about during the house buying process is paint colors? Haha, yeah. I know. It's bad. But there's still a whole month for the craziness to set in. Bring it. I already have my mega-long list made, so I think I'm ready.

I'm hoping my "collect as many design photos as humanly possible" addiction goes out the door just like my "real estate stalking" addiction went. I never thought I'd be able to kick the real estate stalking problem, and I was worried that I'd find something way better after we made an offer, and that I'd regret my decision, blah blah blah. But instead, the opposite happened- I no longer stalk real estate sites and I haven't been on one since we put the offer on the house, and I don't even have the desire to look. Neat.

So I'm hoping that the same thing happens to my design photo hoarding issue when we finally move into the house- because my inspiration folder is about to bust at the seams.

But anyway, my current obsession is our basement.

As you've probably heard me bitch before, I really REALLY dislike basements. For more reasons than I can count. But I think I have figured out's because, in general, people try to make a basement something that it is not- light and airy. And, to me, it usually looks hideous. The light paint colors look so drab. The massive amounts of lighting doesn't lend much of a favor to the issue, either. Which is why we're going to go against the grain and paint our basement dark. Why not just go with the fact that basements are dark and will be dark no matter what? I guess that's just what makes sense to me. I've googled the heck out of the issue (haha, to "google" something sounds so funny) and so many people say "YOU CAN'T DO THAT!", that it makes me want to even more. So I'll show them. (And then I'll probably end up hating it...)

Anyway. I have the next 2 days off, after working a damn long stretch of 7 days, and I will have company over on both. So off I go to get ready for that.

Have a good week!

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Style + Colors

...With a touch of Farm House

That's what I'm going for.

Urban being the style of artwork we put up.
Industrial and Sophisticated being the style of lighting and accessories.
Modern being the style of furniture.
Farm House being the style of some of the artwork, accessories and furniture.


Color Scheme #1:
Color Scheme #2:
I'd like to get more pink or coral things in the house, because red is too predictable and everyone has red things.

I really like the Annex sectional from CB2.

The living room is long and narrow, so I think this could work fairly well.

Monday, July 06, 2009


Do you think that Joe will let me start buying furniture yet?

Yeeeahhh, me neither.
Too bad really, because I can't think of a reason why this table isn't perfect. And it's on clearance at Crate and quantities available. Eek!

I'm a firm believer that you should live in a space before buying any furniture. Well, I was, anyway...until I saw this.

Proof that I follow this rule to a letter: we've been living with furniture that I really dislike for the past 4 years, just waiting till we have a house so we could replace it. But I suppose we kind of have a house now...

I wonder if he'd notice that $500 was missing from our house-savings account.

Ha, who am I kidding.

I suppose I should just email him and ask.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

We're getting really excited about the house!

Next year we should be able to see the fireworks from our backyard, if they light them at the same park that they had them this year...that would be neat.

We're really looking forward to being able to grill out whenever we want! And it will be really nice to have friends and family over.

Well, there's not much else to talk about right now. I have the next 2 days off so hopefully I will do something worth blogging about.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Shot from the back yard.

So let's see...what can I check off my "must have in a house" list?

1. A big yard. With some privacy. That thins out our options quite a bit. check.
2. A garage...I can't wait to have a garage! check. And I don't want the garage connected to the house, if possible, for various reasons. not check.
3. A dressing room...wishful thinking, I suppose. check...sometimes wishes come true.
4. A kitchen AND dining room. I have a huge "table in kitchen" pet peeve. not check...dang.
5. A sunroom...more wishful thinking. not check. dang again!
6. A window in the bathroom. check.
7. Wood floors. check.
8. Somewhere that I won't hear the damn highway all the time. check.
9. Two bathrooms*, because I've gotten used to having my own. Semi-wishful thinking. *Make that three, check.
10. Lots of windows. not check, but it's in order.

Things that are cool that weren't on my list:
1. Sliding door that walks out onto back deck from the master bedroom.
2. Hot tub that overlooks a beautifully landscaped yard.
3. Workshop in the basement (printmaking studio, what's up!!!!)
4. A window over the sink (overlooking that huge yard....)
5. Fireplace.
6. 5 miles away from the Wisconsin River.
7. Near the train tracks (to me, this is cool. I spent the first 19 years of my life near train tracks...i've always loved the train).
8. Great area for a hammock (childhood dream of mine).
9. Lots of potential to be way cool.
10. A very happy husband.

Oh....did I mention we bought a house?

Friday, June 26, 2009

Art and Plant

I wanted to hang out on the balcony before getting ready for work today, so I decided to make this:
Definitely not my best attempt at anything creative, actually probably one of my worst, but I had an extra frame hanging around (not literally) and I didn't want to put much fuss into it. So, for now, it will do.

I just bought that Jade plant from Johannsen's. If you live in the Madison area and haven't been there yet, I recommend a visit. They've got lots of great stuff...I could easily drop $1000 there. If I had an easy $1000, I mean.

Anyway, since I name all my houseplants, this one's name is Pinkett. After Jada Pinkett Smith, duh.

Well it's time to get ready for work. Have a good day! Today is supposed to be 90 here! Hopefully people still want to come to Rutabaga and try out some boats.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

House Hunt Number One.


So I already changed the grey to a gold color on the bird house...

That's the 5th time I've painted and repainted. But at least it's done now.

Here is the new corner for the summer, to replace this corner from the spring.

House hunting went well. Joe and I definitely have different ideas, but when it comes down to it, his really do make more sense and I'm just being Erin stubborn, making everything more difficult than it has to be (yes...i give in...i am a very difficult person to please, especially long-term. But I have been good lately and have bit my tongue a lot.) Sorry that I like character! Which translates to secret rooms, doors and passage ways. Okay, so this house turned out to be as awesome as it was creepy. It would be a really great house to have roommates and throw lots of parties in. There was a really cool secret attic thing upstairs and then we went down into the basement and the first thing I thought was "haunted house" was CRAZY! A concrete basement, with doors that led to more doors, locked by a nut and bolt (loved that) that you had to duck to get into and then we got to this crazy weird tiny circular room (probably 6 feet wide by 6 or 7 feet tall) that may have been a bomb shelter or a hiding place for a war or something. Who knows. It had a built in bench that went around it and the walls were slanted all the way around, it felt like a UFO! Even though it was an awesome house, there was a lot of wasted space and the layout was really random (but that's what made it fun). I just wouldn't be able to feel at ease in that house, as beautiful as it was...there's way too many hiding spots! And I freak out about home intruders on a regular basis and I don't want my sleep paralysis to come back ever again, so for my health, I decided that it wouldn't be a good idea to live in such a house.

So before we saw that home, we went to this ranch.

It was beautiful inside, very sunny in the kitchen and bedroom in the evening, the backyard is HUGE (about an acre and a half) and had lots of nice gardens, there is a workshop in the basement (i hate basements........but joe loves them so this is one area where i may give in) and a utility sink adjacent to the workshop. Um, can you say printmaking studio? YES. Annnd the reason I would say okay to this particular basement is because it has a walkout into the yard, so it's not as dark and dingy as most basements tend to be. The downstairs was just really great and would be perfect for guests because it has separate living areas and a fireplace.

The problem is's a ranch. And I'm not into mid-century design like I used to be (way too trendy right now and very stark and cold) so I'm a little concerned about that. And it's a ranch. The typical American house. BUT the more I think about it, the more I want to see it again, because was really cool, for a ranch. So we'll see. It also has great potential for an exterior facelift. I've already rethought that whole process.

Anyway. I'm sure by now you are bored of my house adventures. I know I would be. But I've been stalking realty sites for over 3 years now and it's finally time to buy one! So I'm just a tad bit wound up about it all.

Okay, off to the balcony I go. I'm going to plant some wildflowers.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Bird House Painting

Yay! Day off today!

My favorite thing to do on my days off is sit on my balcony and paint things.

Even when it's a blazing 90 degree day. I like it when it's really hot, reminds me of the tropics. Sort of. And when I sweat, it makes me feel like whatever I'm doing is worth my time. Haha.

Anyway, do you remember this bird house?:
Well, today it's getting a paint job.

The cool thing about painting when it's so hot out is that the paint dries super quick.
Anyway, I'm on a mega grey kick lately.

And blue.......I don't know WHAT is going on with that, I have always sworn that blue would never be my color and it never has been. And then something happened. I don't know what, but it has to be related to something. Although I usually have a new favorite color about every 3-4 months or so, and maybe I was just tiring of the rotation that I had going over the past 5 or 6 years.

So now I like blue. Mostly slate and aqua colors. Not primary blue, though. I should mention that the bird house was blue until about 5 months ago, when I started this project, and before my blue liking. I need to finish it today because I have about 13 projects going on and I'm trying to get them all done before things get packed up (when we move.) And Joe will be happy to see that I actually FINISHED something, since I get bored with things and move onto new ideas rather frequently.

Anyway, what's new with you? Not a lot here. It's 10:33 AM and I feel like I haven't gotten anything done. I'm going to the nursery to get food for my garden and then I'm getting vinegar and lemons so I can clean Joe's bathroom. Remember, he's the organizer and I'm the cleaner. Which is kind of good but kind of bad because I sort of get the short end of the takes WAY longer than organizing.

6 Random things:
+I love spicy food.
+I can't wait to have a dog.
+I have never been able to touch my toes.
+I make up songs every morning and sing them to Joe.
+I hate playing softball and basketball but I love playing hockey and soccer.
+I'm listening to Disco Radio on Pandora. I like Disco because it's easy to dance to.

Okay, your turn.

Friday, June 19, 2009

If I Had a Nice Sunny Room...

Having a sun room or even a 3-season room is a dream I've had as long as I can remember. There's something about sunny spaces that don't have a television in them...somewhere that I can lounge and relax and sip on a seasonal beverage while reading a magazine. I'm not big on novels, so I resort to reading magazine articles and blogs. But if I did like to read long books, I would most definitely want to do so in a warm and sunny room.

So, if I had this house, I'd want to decorate the front entry with these items:


+KARLSTAD Chaise. White: $349
+HAVTORN VASE: $13 each
+Purple Terra Cotta Plaques. Set of 4: $40
+Weathered Wood Jewelry Cabinet: $36
+Overnight Table Lamp: $30
+Chirp Pillow: $25
+Channel-Rib Pillow Cover: $24 each
+Moorish Rug, 5x8, sold out at PB but available on eBay: $290
+Circles Table by Michael Arras: $499

TOTAL: About $1400 after shipping charges.

Links to come.

Well it's about time to get ready for work. Our phones have been down for 5 days now and it's a real drag. It's slowing down business and screwing things up left and right- one guy said that he thought Rutabaga closed up shop. Fingers crossed that it all gets fixed today.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

2:00. Thursday.

So I'm sitting on my couch, reading the news, and suddenly there is a ladder being propped up against my balcony. Um, okay...I didn't get any sort of notice from the apartment management, so I wasn't really sure what was going on. Before I know it, there are 3 men on my balcony. Okay, for one, I was in the middle of a project (on my balcony) and was about to go back out to work on it some more. And two, what the heck is going on? They were up here for about 40 minutes, installing a new vent cover. But what the heck...aren't they supposed to give me some sort of notice? I don't know, I just didn't think it was very cool. What if I was laying on the couch naked or something? Maybe I just have a thing with boundaries.
Anyway, I'll add it to my list of reasons why I can't wait till we no longer rent.


I found this house the other day on a realty site. It's in Mazomanie, though. And Mazomanie is far far away from Monona, which is where I work. I wouldn't mind the drive as much as the maintenance on a car being driven 60 miles (roundtrip) each day.

Originally I thought Mazomanie would be okay, because it's only about 14 miles away from the place I work during the non-Rutabaga season. But then when I went to said place the other day for a rehire event, things didn't go quite as I'd hoped, and I can't say that I'm too happy about it. I can't go into detail for various reasons, but I'm a little peeved.

So I already decided how I would decorate this house if it was mine. But chances are we wont even look at it since it's so far from work. It's too bad that the houses in Madison don't meet enough of my requirements. Mainly because of our price range (we're being pretty frugal with it, I suppose) but also because a lot of the houses don't have a big enough yard. If I can throw a baseball across the length of the yard with my left arm, then it's too small.

PS, I'm right handed.

Well I have to go get a new tire from Firestone now. I've been putting that off for most of the day. I went earlier and there were a ton of people there so I left.

OH and guess who's back? 2 of the 3 guys. No joke. Off I go before I break some skulls.