Saturday, February 8, 2014

Making Room

For the first Saturday of February, Jon suggested we have an epic room cleaning day. I was thrilled!

Everywhere we've lived for the past 8 years has always been "temporary". And I hate that word.

Basically, I know we won't be here a long time. We've never been anywhere a long time. Most of our bedrooms (ok ALL of them) over the years have been glorified storage closets with a bed in it. We just always felt like it wasn't worth spending a lot of time on because we never hoped to be in any one place very long. Our room has ALWAYS been an embarrassment for me and I hated letting people see it - or really spending any time in there myself because it was so cluttered. It stressed me out.

For the first time ever - I'll be revealing and show you what we had to deal with. As Jon described it, it was getting to "hoarder status"... Here are some before pictures:

as you walk in the door...

looking to the right...

farther right. the computer desk is right there inside the door.

when you look back at the door you can see we still had our Christmas wreath up

Computer/sewing desk crammed by the door.

barely any walking room on my side of the bed! I had to squeeze through the corner between the bed and the desk.

cubbies all a mess at the end of the bed.
ironing board leaning up against the bookshelves because the hanger for it was holding up the Christmas wreath on the door. Margo's crate was piled on top with Jon's book project, our Christmas advent calendar, boxes of artwork, and baby shower gifts waiting to go out.
the dresser that we sold - all piled with papers and junk
oh yeah - AND Jon's Star Wars figures still hanging from the glow-in-the-dark ceiling. Did we mention that this was his room as a kid??

Gosh, it makes me stressed out just looking at it all over again!

We set up a plan for things we wanted to accomplish in our room and how we would like it to better be organized.

On that Saturday, Nicolette came over so that we could go to a petting zoo / fundraiser over at Del Oro. Kate had a fun time seeing the goats, petting the guinea pigs, and eating her first tootsie pop! We did our own self guided tour around campus since it had been a few years since any of us had really walked around there. It was fun to see all of the changes they had made, and especially the expansion of the agricultural area! I was never into science or FFA in high school, but now I sort of wish I had been. The school has a new aquaponics system for gardening, which is really neat. We had one of the juniors helping out at the bake sale show us how it worked.

After the fundraiser Nicolette helped us with phase 1 of the room project - moving our dresser into the garage! We had someone interested in buying it, but they were in the process of moving, so they couldn't pick it up for another week. I really wanted to get moving with our re-organization, so once the dresser was out, we were able to set up an "office" corner with our computer in a more accessible area, along with our calendar and white board of scheduling and "to-do" lists. We also moved Margo's crate, our Craft-N-Doodle storage, and the hamper to a better space under the window, which alleviated room for closet maid storage cubbies on the opposite wall. It really opened up the center of the room and just felt so much bigger!

Here are some of the "in-between" pictures:

it has to get worse before it gets better, right??

At least the cubbies aren't at the end of the bed anymore!

We were able to go through a lot of things that I didn't even realize we still had; artwork, toys, clothes, knick knacks, and just plain junk to donate, trash, or use in some other capacity. Jon vacuumed and I cleaned the blinds (hallelujah!) I just love having a neat and organized space.

The room still has a long way to go. It is definitely not done or the way we would like it ultimately, BUT it was a HUGE step and I feel like we made a lot of progress.

 Here are the after pictures in its current state:

AH it's just so refreshing! Now that we've taken such big steps, it feels a lot more manageable to tackle the little stuff. It is SOOO much better! Cleaning off shelves, reorganizing the books, getting paperwork off of the cubbies, acquiring more fabric cubes, and getting better Christmas/holiday storage containers are the next goals. A Saturday well spent!!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

The Fourth Saturday

The fourth Saturday of January fell on the 25th - which also happened to be mine and Jon's 10 year anniversary of dating!

Every year Jon and I celebrate this anniversary by re-creating our first date in some form, or we mix it up and still do "fast food and a movie" but we pick something besides Taco Bell, and we go see a movie currently in theaters. (8 years was Sherlock Holmes and In-n-Out, Last year was the Squeeze Inn and Les Miserables)

THIS YEAR I had great plans. I was going to rent out a private screening and have them play Cheaper By The Dozen (which Jon wouldn't realize until we were there) and I was going to arrange to have Taco Bell food waiting there for us, or brought in during the movie. No expense and effort would be too much for celebrating 10 years in an epic way!!

Except that it turns out arranging a private screening is REALLY REALLY expensive. And if you don't already have your movie in the right format, you have to add an AV package for it to work with the projectors, and THAT is also really expensive. We're talking thousands of dollars here.

So I let Jon in on my plan. We decided instead to do our traditional "dinner and movie" date, but step it up and make it fancy.

First, we went to McCormick & Schmick's for dinner - which we had never been to. Thanks to some gift cards from Christmas we were able to dine in fanciness! It is definitely in our list of top 10 favorite restaurants. Everything was fantastic. Jon and I shared an appetizer of sushi grade seared tuna and an avocado tartar, then after delicious salads and awesome sourdough bread, Jon had the seared sea scallops and I had the stuffed Atlantic salmon. OH MY. So delightful.

Afterward, we headed over to Miabella for gelato. They have a really good sorbet selection, so I always have some good choices too :) We decided to take our gelato on a stroll as we went around The Fountains and back to our car.

 Well for a Saturday night it was getting pretty packed (as expected) and apparently parking was in high demand, because some old man started following us in his car (presumably to get our spot which he assumed we were walking towards) but seriously he was right behind us at a creeper pace following us at 3mph - a young man and his 7 month pregnant wife! - to our car... I mentioned quietly to Jon that we should just keep walking and walking. So we passed our car and went WAY down to the other end of the parking lot, and then crossed over to the path on the other side and walked ALL the way back. This guy would not give up! And he never even asked if we were headed to a car, or if he could have our spot. He just creepily kept following for a good 5+ minutes, which felt like an hour! Finally I think he figured we were just enjoying our date and so he split off in search of another parking place. I was just amazed at his stubborn insistence of following us like a stalker when Jon and I were just trying to enjoy our dessert. We had a really good laugh about that one. And were thankful that we were in a nice area and did not get kidnapped or shot :)

Next, we were going to go see a movie - BUT there was nothing that looked very good in theaters that we haven't already seen :( We decided instead to back up to our 8 year wedding anniversary that we just celebrated in November, and used our gift card to Color Me Mine and paint some pottery!!

We had never been there before, and had NO plan on what to paint.

In case you have never been there either, I will do a brief summary.

Color Me Mine is a "paint-your-own-pottery" studio. They have the pieces there ready to go and you pick out whatever you want to paint. Once you buy your pottery, you pick out your paint colors. Then you get to work! The possibilities are endless and when your creation is done, they clean up your mess and glaze your pottery during the week for you to pick up a few days later.

Jon and I picked out a chubby cookie jar for our family since we have never had one.

The colors we picked were a soft lime green, sea mist, and teal, with black for accents and writing.

Jon painted most of the jar green. Then I painted the lid and the front oval.

Jon added some embellishment to the knob on the top:

I did the wording on the front, and Jon worked on the decorative vines: 


We had a lot of fun creating together and designing everything as we went!

 Me with our finished cookie jar! (painted, but not yet glazed)

ages 26 and 28 - 10 years after our first date

We were super happy with the finished product. The glaze made all the colors pop and it looks so cool!

 Right now we have a candy stash in there, but we're looking forward to having our own kitchen again someday and filling it with delicious cookies :)
It was a great way to celebrate 10 years of togetherness and have a keepsake to launch us into the next 10 years - and beyond!