Happy Birthday Scott!

Today my husband turns 27!  Having his birthday the day before New Years Eve generally means we have a low key celebration.  This year is no different.  We have plans to go to the International Center of Photography and then on to a greek dinner tonight.  Tomorrow we have some friends coming over and then we’ll be heading out to ring in the New Year.  So tonight will just be the two of us.

So Happy Birthday, my love.  Here are some reasons why I love you!

I will always feel like your bride – as happy and beautiful as I did on our wedding day – when you look at me.

You always do the dinner dishes.

You are so stinking handsome!

 

You have embraced Virginia Tech as your own – and proudly wear the title of Spokie (Spouse of a Hokie). We’ll work on your hand made VT.

You grew an incredibly handsome beard on our honeymoon.

You’ve won over the world’s meanest cat (aka Emily Rose).

You do this.

You were the cutest little boy ever.  And had mad artistic skills.

Love you honey!

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Merry Christmas!

We just wanted to wish all of our family and friends a very Merry Christmas.  We have enjoyed our first holiday season as a married couple.  Here are a few scenes from the season.

Seasons Greetings (and wedding thank yous) were  sent!  Don’t mind the glass of wine, which was ever present during that process…

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care.

We didn’t have snow.. or mistletoe…but there were presents on the tree…

…which were more like brown paper packages tied up with string.
City sidewalks, busy sidewalks, were dressed in holiday style.

Faithful friends who are dear to us, gathered near to us, once more.

Prince rocked around the Christmas tree.

And a yama-claus in a pear tree!

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

The Prince of the Upper East Side

So a lot of my friends in Virginia (both NoVa and Blacksburg) have asked how The Prince is doing.  And the answer is…he is taking to his new home swimmingly.  Please see the photo evidence.

Here he is enjoying the extra shipping boxes around the house since it’s Christmas time.

There have been plenty of huge bags for him to wiggle into.

Basking in the sun.

His constant plight…trying to get outside.

I think he’s trying to brainwash me into letting him out when he looks at me like this.

Sweet success!

He has really enjoyed the new rug and has found his “spot” on it.

My only complaint was that he wasn’t as outgoing and friendly with Scott and our guests as he used to be.  But he was just as needy as ever, meaning I couldn’t sit down without him cuddling into my lap.  It was getting to be a bit much!  Every time he heard my voice he came running.  He has been through a lot with so many moves in such a short period of time.  He did live in three different places in one month.

However, this past weekend, this happened…

This is our friend, Ryan.  He and his fiancee were over for dinner on Saturday and when we were just about done, Prince decided to make himself right at home in Ryan’s lap.  Lucky, Ryan was ok with it!  I guess Prince is finally getting more comfortable in his new home and is getting back to his old self.

Kitchen Table Redo

In the month leading up to the wedding, I undertook my first furniture redo and upgrade. I’ve been reading Do It Yourself and home redo blogs for awhile.  I was inspired by it and had secretly wanted to try my hand at it for awhile.

Scott and I were fortunate enough to inherit a solid wood table from his parents.  They were moving and wanted to get new furniture and offered up everything to their kids.  Scott and I were sorely lacking furniture as we both had lived with roommates who had all of the furniture needed.  So we gladly accepted the table and chairs!

Here she is in the “before” stage.  I’d already disassembled it before I remembered to take pictures.

Table Top – check out the dirt on that edge.

The Base

The Leaves

The Chairs – there seemed to be some blue paint and some serious scratches.

The first order of business was cleaning all of the pieces.  And I’m not talking about just soap and water – I’m talking about resorting to sandpaper and even steel wool on some pieces.  I don’t think that it is recommended to use steel wool on wood, for fear of scratching.  But on some of the tougher pieces the sandpaper got gunked up too quickly.  So I used the finest steel wool I could find and didn’t have any issues.  It definitely was only as a last resort for stubborn dirt and grease.

When I was done cleaning, the chairs really shone!  At that point, I thought about what it would look like to just stain the table.  But my original plan was to paint the table white, so I decided to continue with it.

I started with a coat of primer.

And then moved onto white semi-gloss paint.  I did two coats on the base and a few more than that on the leaves and the table top.  I think that the leaves would have been fine with just two coats, but I wanted to do the same amount as the table top, so that if we ever use them, there won’t be any difference.  I finished it off with two coats of polyurethane.

Here is the finished product.

As for the chairs…I decided to spray paint them a darker color for some contrast with the table.  I went for a metallic spray paint in oil rubbed bronze.  They are a mix between black and very dark brown with a metallic sheen in the right light.  They definitely do give the contrast I wanted, but they aren’t a dull, flat color.  I used a spray paint with a built in primer, so I just went right to it.  It took a full two coats of spray paint per chair, plus a few touch ups in some areas.  I finished up with a high gloss spray on sealant.  The chairs are now wipeable and shiny.  Perfect for looks as well as function!

Here is the put-together result.  The table did suffer a bit in the move, but I plan to fix those scratches when the weather is a bit warmer.

We were so glad we had room for the table and four chairs in the apartment.  They’ve worked really well, and it was great to not have to purchase a new table and chairs.  We probably wouldn’t have gotten the look and color combination that we wanted and would most likely have ended up with something that was smaller and of lesser quality.  I’ve had so much fun setting the table every night.  All of the table linens, place mats and plates look so nice on the white background.

I definitely made some rookie mistakes, which I won’t do again.  Such as using a paint brush to apply the primer on the table top.  I then used a foam roller to put on the paint, but the brush strokes from the primer showed through, no matter how many coats of paint I used.  I think it is only noticeable to me, and only from certain lighting angles.  However, I lived and learned and will do better next time!  Not sure when the next time will be, but I have high hopes redoing more furniture in the future.  And lucky me, I actually have outdoor space at our apartment, so it’s on the table – so to speak.  (My dad instilled a good use of puns in me.)  Now, I’ve got my eye on an old bookshelf my grandfather made.  Maybe it will get a treatment similar to this.  Who knows?

Jewelry Art

I don’t think it’s a secret that I love jewelry (see my Elizabeth Taylor post).  So it stands to reason that I have collected a bit over the years.  But jewelry isn’t the easiest thing to store.  Dangly earrings are particularly difficult.

I didn’t really have a problem letting my jewelry take up my entire dresser when I lived on my own, but now that I’m married, I need to make sure I’m being fair about storage space. So until last night, I had the following contraption.  It is from Claire’s.  Eew.  But it’s the only thing I had found that stored and displayed earrings upright.   It would get top heavy and fall over if it wasn’t weighted down (please see the big necklace in the bottom rack) or leaning against the wall.  Another downfall was that it took up surface space on the dresser.

Soooo…when I came across this idea on Pinterest, I immediately became obsessed with making one for myself.  It’s classy, it displays the earrings almost like art, and it goes on the wall, which is always a plus around here. All I needed was a radiator cover and a frame.  I had already used all of my spare frames in our frame display.  So I did some searching for a suitable frame and found this on clearance at Bed, Bath and Beyond.  I wonder why?  It was only $14.99 and we had a gift card there.  Score!

When it arrived yesterday, I just removed the backing, the “art,” and the glass from the front.   I had a radiator cover ready and waiting which I got at Home Depot on a trip a few weeks back.  I cut it down to size with normal scissors and simply taped it to the back of the  matting.  And voila!

I love it!  It’s so much more grown up.  And Scott is pleased because there is color on the walls.  I still have an obnoxiously large jewelry box which I probably need to do something about.  But one battle at a time!

Our First Two Months…in Quotes

Last Thursday was our two month anniversary, so I thought I’d take some time to share a few quotes that I collected from our first two months of marriage.

{ONE}

Scott: Did I mumble just now?  Did you just understand that?

Me: ….No, I understood you.
Scott: Because sometimes when I think back on what I just said it sounds like, “uuuhhhhhhhhhhhh”.
Me: Haha, well it kind of does, but I think I’m getting better at speaking “Scott.”
{TWO}
I was making the bed, and Scott brought Prince in and threw him into the middle of it all.  Prince spazzed out and ran away, of course.  But he left behind the distinct scent of litter – not what he does in the litter box, just the litter.  So I said…
Me: Did he just get out of the litter box?
Scott: Who?
Me: Who??  There is only one member of this family that uses a litter box!  If that’s not enough, there is only one other “HE” in this family.  What do you mean, WHO?
I love my husband.
{THREE}
Scott: Hey Becca, do you want $100?
Me: (thinking this is a cruel joke): What do you mean?
…I walk into the bedroom…see Scott holding cash
Me: Oh, you’re serious?
Scott: Here, take $120.
Me: Score!
{FOUR}
On the Honeymoon…
As we neared the end of our honeymoon, I had a *minor* breakdown about how much we had to accomplish in such a short amount of time when we returned to Virginia.  It also started to sink in that I wouldn’t be living near my parents, best friends or church in a few short days.  Much emotional babbling ensued.
So my wonderful, newly-wed husband let me cry and talk myself out.  He gave me a hug and then said quite possibly the most comforting thing he could have said to me:
Scott: Do you want to make a list?
Most people would have suggested that I just stop freaking out and remember that I was in paradise and how about we go to the bar?  Or said something along the lines of  “This is for the best,” “This is a great opportunity for me,” “you’ll be just a train ride away” or something else that is trying to be comforting.  None of that would have worked for me.  
Because of course I wanted to make a list!  It was actually the only thing I could think of to make me feel better in that moment.  Organizing and categorizing is the best way for me to de-stress.  I love that he knows this about me and knew how to make me feel better.

The Most Exciting Adventure…That Wasn’t

So as some of you may know, the beautiful Elizabeth Taylors extensive jewel collection was recently at Christie’s in Rockefeller Plaza.  The jewels (and some couture clothing) were on display for a short while for the public to view, and recently, there was an online auction.

This is a big deal in my world.  Big jewelry, Elizabeth Taylor…enough said.  I mean, this is the woman who had TWO full sets of Louis Vuitton luggage, which all bore the same violet luggage tag, which simply read “Mine.”   A moment of silence for Ms. Taylor and her extreme fabulous-ness.

Ok.

So, I badly wanted to go see said jewels.  At first glance, Christie’s website reads that all viewings are free and open to the public.  Score!  I texted my new New York girlfriend and made plans immediately.  The morning of our trip, I decided to do a bit more digging, just to be sure.  Lucky, I did.

Sadly, there was a $30 charge to see Ms. Taylor’s jewels.  And even more sadly, that just isn’t in our budget at the moment.  I was crushed.

Luckily, we passed Christie’s this past weekend and I got to see their display windows all done up in honor of Elizabeth Taylor.  It was very cool.  And I did check out the online listing and her collection was absolutely staggering.  I heard that Bvlgari bought back the items which were originally purchased from them.  I like the full-circle quality of that.

Maybe my next fabulous New York outing will actually happen.  Here’s hoping!