Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Hot Chocolate Party

A hot chocolate party. Is this not the cutest idea ever or what? I mean, really. It's perfect for all ages. Who doesn't love enjoying a big, steaming mug of chocolaty goodness?

I came across this idea earlier this fall and stowed it away for the Christmas season. I'm a sucker for the holiday and love sharing it with others, so this was the perfect theme for a Christmas get together.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Spice Rack

My organized kitchen effort has been a slow one. I didn't have much of a game plan for the storage challenge I would be facing in my smaller than desired cooking area. Projects like revamping the lazy susan cabinet and creating a coffee corner developed after finding inspiration on pinterest MONTHS after I moved in. So needless to say, there's still quite a few organization issues I've yet to tackle.

But thanks to an early Christmas present from my mom, I was able to knock out a pretty awful one this weekend: my spice storage.

Friday, December 13, 2013


I think I'm developing an affinity for reindeer.

I got this cutie in a kit from target last weekend. He's hanging above the window in my kitchen.

I bought this fella from TJ MAXX when my mom and I went Christmas shopping last month.

And I made this guy a couple of weekends ago when I was on my glitter rampage.

I have the glittery ones displayed on the buffet I recently added to the living room. Do you like my usage of all the random ornamentsi had no idea what to do with?

Adding Another Couch

Guys, I lived in a teeny tiny one bedroom apartment BY MYSELF for two years. During those two years, I can count the number of times friends came over to just hang out on one hand. I can't blame them; there was no way more than a few of us could have fit in there.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

PE! Cake

Engineering is serious stuff. You go to school for 4+ years to get a degree. Then you go out and work in the real world for 4 more years. Then you take a crazy 8 hour test. And finally, if you can pass that beast you're allowed to call yourself a professional engineer. Whew.

See? Serious stuff.

And the only way to celebrate accomplishing all of that serious stuff is with sprinkles. Lots and lots and lots and lots of sprinkles.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Christmas kitchen

So what if I've been using the top of my cabinets to hold my cereal, alcohol, 5 pound box of sprinkles, entire spice collection, and unhung pictures? I've only lived here for 5 months. Just kidding, I know it's pathetic.

But 'tis the season to make your house look like an elf vomited Christmas decorations everywhere, right?

Friday, November 29, 2013

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Friday, November 22, 2013

must. glitter. everything. (oh JOY)

It's been a while since I've done some legitimate crafting. With the house buying and the painting and the moving and the unpacking and the life-ing (totally a verb... trust me), I've been a bit busy.

Now I've done some small projects, but we all know what makes for an actual legitimate craft. Glitter. Lots and lots of glitter.

Love Sticks

Random acts of kindness are my favorite. I get a lot of self satisfaction from doing things to make others happy. And since Chris is so easily amused, it doesn't take much on my part to make him smile.


Granted, if he's going to buy my roses, bring me chocolate covered strawberries, and stand outside in the cold darkness to replace my light fixtures all in the same week, I need something that's quick and simple to return the love. That's where the love sticks come in. 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Wednesday, November 6, 2013


I love painting.  I find it enjoyable and relaxing and rewarding.

Which is probably why I was okay purchasing a house painted an awful color.

I originally assumed that the previous homeowner chose the less than desirable shade.  But after snooping through a parade of homes house down the street, it looked as though the builder was responsible for it. And that explains why EVERY room was that same color.

Monday, November 4, 2013

The House on Lynnrae

So I decided to keep up the facade that I'm a real, live, actual adult and bought a house. Crazy, right?

Let me remind you, I'm one of those girls that had never even mowed a lawn.  Seriously.  Never.

(My older brother always did it, so stop totally judging me.  I won't blame you for judging me just a little. But only a little.  That is all that's allowed.)

Now let me clarify, when I say I bought a house, I really mean I bought a bachelor pad.  Mostly,  the place is great.  It is relatively new,  structurally sound,  and perfectly Michelle-sized. But the last owner decided to perform a few questionable DIY projects that turned out less than desirable.

I will be the first to admit,  I have a very eclectic design style. I'm not really going to love anything unless it's completely mine. Which gave me the perfect excuse to redo EVERYTHING.  Yeah,  that's right.  Everything.

So stay tuned for my wonderful before and afters as I tear my way through the house :)

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Attempting 4. Shop for all of my groceries for the month in one trip

For those of you that haven't heard, I hate grocery shopping.


Hate hate hate.

I get in an awful cycle where I refuse to go until the last possible moment, then I have to go buy a ton of stuff, then I have to carry all of it inside in one trip (obviously more than one trip is not allowed), then I have to spend forever unloading it, then I decide I can't stand grocery shopping, then I refuse to go until the last possible moment, blah blah blah. You get the picture.

Me + grocery shopping = yuckiness

But a couple of weeks ago I read a blog about thriftiness where one of the posts described shopping for groceries only once a month. Okay, I kind of already do that? Only, the BIG BIG BIG part was completely eliminating the in between trips for "one thing." Yeah, definitely guilty of those. All. The. Time. And those get expensive, like, really expensive.

So there I was. Super intrigued by eliminating trips to the grocery store. And with the month of May shortly approaching (and the food in my refrigerator looking pretty sparse), I figured I might as well give it a try.

And I did.

And it wasn't that painful.

Basically, I meal planned for the ENTIRE month, made a shopping list of EVERYTHING I'm going to need, and sucked it up and went to the store.

It took me less than 45 minutes round trip and I only spent a little more than I usually do. I already know that I will have to go back, because I couldn't find any basil and they were out of the kind of vanilla greek yogurt I like.

But it's a work in progress, and I think I'm going to be able to perfect this system in a few months.

So here's to a future of avoiding the grocery store as much as possible! Hurray!!

Monday, April 22, 2013

81. Put a picture of Emily on my desk at work

This one is going to get me in trouble no matter what. I'm getting close to the two year mark at my job and I still never brought in a picture of emily for my desk. And as much as I've enjoyed looking at random people pretending to be happy for the last five months, it was about time I replaced the stock photo in my rainbow picture frame I got for christmas.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

55. Visit the Sedgwick County Zoo

I hopped right into my 101 this time around. The day after I started my list, Allison, Alex and I all went to the Sedgwick County Zoo for the first time. I've lived in Wichita for almost 2 years, AJW-squared has been here for almost 5, and we had never been!

After wandering around for a bit while we were there, we decided we probably should have "stolen" a kid to bring with us. Lucky for us, we have a supply of about 14 of them with parents who would be happy to get rid of them for a day. Next time we do something fun we're going to get one of our girl scouts to join us :)

My Second 101 in 1001

A few years ago I decided to come up with and complete 101 different tasks over the course of 1001 days. It was very interesting to measure my growth and compare how my priorities changed over that time period. And because it included my transition from college to the "real world" there were a lot of things I discovered didn't really apply to my life anymore, seemed daunting and ended up actually becoming a part of my regular life, and those that were still slightly out of my reach.

Last week I decided to go for round 2. There are a few repeats from last time, but I tried to come up with mostly new, exciting, and very obtainable (but challenging) tasks. So here's to checking off more of them than I did last time :)

Start Date: Friday, April 19th, 2013
End Date: Friday, January 15th, 2016

Key: Completed     In progress

  1. Earn my PE License
  2. Get to my goal weight
  3. Buy a house
  4. Shop for all of my groceries for the month in one trip
  5. Create a budget and follow it
  6. Run another ½ marathon
  7. Get a passport
  8. Leave the country
  9. Apply to be on the Amazing Race with Emily
  10. Take a hot air balloon ride
  11. Complete the 30 day shred
  12. Get a bike
  13. Get rid of cable
  14. Go berry picking
  15. Take a glass blowing class
  16. Take another class at City Arts
  17. Find a church to start attending regularly
  18. Take a vacation by myself
  19. Keep a gratitude journal
  20. Get a dog
  21. Finish my MU t-shirt quilt
  22. Take a quilting class
  23. Send flowers to a friend just because
  24. Go to the drive-in
  25. Run 10 more 5Ks (1: Prairie Fire 5/5, 2: Poker Run 6/15 3: Prairie Fire 5/4)
  26. Run a 5k in less than 29 minutes
  27. Run an 8-minute mile
  28. Grow a vegetable
  29. Start an advanced degree
  30. Go to a bed and breakfast
  31. Complete a jigsaw puzzle with more than 1000 pieces
  32. Buy new dishes
  33. Learn to swim with my head under water
  34. Build a fort
  35. Complete the light canvas project
  36. Paint dressers (both of them!)
  37. Buy a real bedroom set
  38. Paint night stand
  39. Get sewing machine serviced
  40. Make 25 pinterest recipes (1: Burrito Bake 2: brown sugar chicken 3: veggie pizza wonton cups 4: oven toasted turkey sandwiches 5: oatmeal cookie dough Greek yogurt ice cream 6: cilantro lime chicken tacos 7: million dollar spaghetti 8: Mexican casserole 9: freezer biscuits 10: peanut butter bars 11: fiesta rice salad 12: peppermint whipped cream 13: Smirnoff Cinna-Sugar whipped cream 14:coconut curry chicken 15:one pot wonder tomato Basil pasta 16:flour tortillas 17: lime poppy seed dressing 18: parmesan baked fries 19: garlic aioli 20: Basic sugar cookie 21: popcorn cake 22: Chili, lime,  and cumin cod 23: one pot wonder blackberry glazed salmon 24: kale chips 25: turkey broccoli panini)
  41. Give up desserts for 1 month
  42. Do 50 consecutive pushups
  43. Shoot a gun
  44. Get a pedometer
  45. Don’t complain for a week
  46. Mail a secret to postsecret
  47. Eat vegetarian for one week
  48. Give up dairy for a week
  49. Give up gluten for a week
  50. Grow sunflowers
  51. Find a perfect hummus recipe
  52. Use my shutterfly groupon
  53. Use my massage groupons (the place closed)
  54. Make reusable sandwich bags
  55. Visit the Sedgwick County Zoo (read post here)
  56. Visit a new state (New York)
  57. Call a different friend 7 days in a row
  58. Present a session at a SWE conference
  59. Become a SWE lifetime member
  60. Find and visit a dentist
  61. Don’t eat out for one month
  62. Make ice cream
  63. Make emergency weather backpack
  64. Send Christmas cards
  65. Volunteer with Habitat for Humanity
  66. Pay for someone else’s coffee in the drive-thru
  67. Take a knife skills class
  68. Take a calligraphy class
  69. Make sushi
  70. Give up soda for one year (while I hardly drink this anymore, one year free is not going to happen)
  71. Start recycling
  72. Learn to play an instrument
  73. Go to Ikea
  74. Give a 100% tip
  75. Visit a new amusement park
  76. Visit a bridge from my book
  77. Complete a coloring book
  78. Use my fancy schmancy markers for something
  79. Attend a live taping of a tv show
  80. Discover a new passion
  81. Put a picture of Emily on my desk at work
  82. Try 10 new restaurants (Lucile's, Snooze, Frank & Nic's, Supano Steakhouse,  Pratt Street Ale House,  Freebird's, The Beacon, Sweet Basil,  Stroud's, Mexico Cafe,  Pasta Piazza)
  83. Create a cleaning routing and do it
  84. “Unplug” for an entire day
  85. Sign up and do an indoor tri
  86. Go stargazing
  87. Go paint pottery
  88. Start a collection of homemade cards
  89. Buy a bluray player
  90. Get 8-hours of sleep every night for a week
  91. Get lasik eye surgery
  92. Complete my graduation scrapbook
  93. Complete and send recipe books
  94. Send Grace her scrapbook
  95. Finish 30 Rock on Netflix
  96. Get a pen pal overseas
  97. Find the perfect pair of jeans
  98. Reread the Harry Potter series
  99. Find the perfect LBD
  100. Do something stupid
  101. Write a letter to myself to be opened when 1001 days are over