Thursday, June 30, 2011

NKOTBSB Houston

If you follow me on Twitter then you’ve probably been consumed by my million and one NKOTBSB Tweets over the past few days. Originally I was going to try to consolidate these posts but as I started writing there was just no way. So here is the First Chapter of the NKOTBSB Saga.

Kandis and I started our Houtson NKOTBSB adventure with a stop at the Harwin Disrict and went to what Virginia lovingly calls the Chinese Mall.

It’s a place where you can find awesome sunglasses like these:

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Or a wig AND a Happy Ending….

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Remember these hair ties? I LOVED them when I was younger!

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$2.99 for a bra? I’ll take 10 please! (Kidding)

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O.M.G. Fishnet gloves! It was here that we decided we were going to go ALL OUT for the concert. The heart sunglasses we had bought for everyone just wasn’t going to be enough. We needed these!

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When I told Sarah about our purchases and asked if she’d want a scrunchie she replied, “hot plink please.” My response? “Done.”

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We got to our hotel and met a very nice man on the skywalk going to the lobby. He took one look at us and said, “I take it you aren’t here for the Senior Games are you?” It turns out that our hotel was the conference hotel for what is basically the Senior Olympics. Awe-some! 30 somethings reliving their childhood dreams and the Senior Games? We knew this trip was going to be fantastic! I told him we were here for the New Kids on the Block concert and he had no idea who they were.

While we were waiting to check in one of the reservation agents asked a group if they were there for the New Kids concert. They had no idea what she was talking about but we were all like, WE ARE! *Hi! We’re 12!”

While we were checking in Kandis was bartering with the reservation agent about an upgrade she had asked for on the website and milking her pregnancy for all it’s worth so we could get some free apps in the Executive Lounge when I decided to also check on a New Kids upgrade just for good measure. Turns out our guy had no idea who they were. I asked him his age and he said 25 so he’s in the right age range. I asked if he had any sisters and he said “no, two brothers.” I almost asked if one was gay because then he really would have NO REASON to not know who they were but held back. It was probably the smart thing to do because an hour later this arrived in our room!

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I almost DIED! NKOTBSB must love us!

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(please excuse my no makeup face)

We also painted our nails these amazing colors (my faux travel bling. I still haven’t taken my rings in to get fixed!)

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Enjoying my NKOTBSB wine while waiting for Sarah and Virginia to get to the hotel.

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Oh – did I forget to mention how I accidentally walked through someone’s cocktail hour in this outfit. Cause I did!

Waiting for the show to start!

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Our cupholder



The guys actually call this the Penis Stage

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Ashlyne Huff opened – we missed most of her show but she was followed by Jordin Sparks.

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Then it was time for the Boys!

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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Living Room Updates

Last weekend John and I had our new living room furniture delivered! We had decided to get a new couch and loveseat for the living room and ended up falling in love with an entertainment center so we really did get almost new everything. I also bought a new rug at Lowes as my first accent piece. What do you think of the new look?

From the hallway:

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The color in these pictures despite my best effort with lighting and camera setting look brown. Their official color according to the store is charcoal, but they really are a grey green and lean more towards the green than anything else.

We got a new coffee table a couple months ago and it fits in with the new furniture nicely.

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I really wish the rug was a few inches bigger, but oh well. The next size up is HUGE so it is what it is.

This is the entertainment center. I'm excited about all the storage space!

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What's great is that the pieces are modular so if in our next house we don't have the same wall space we can use just the TV stand, create a bookcase with the two taller pieces and store the top middle piece in the garage.

View from the front door/kitchen:

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I saw this at Home Goods and thought I'd use it as my color inspiration.

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This design board from Young House Love also captures what I want from the room.



My first accent pieces:

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I'll add to the entertainment center next, but what I REALLY want are pillows and curtains. If only they weren't so expensive! My biggest debate are the curtains though. Do I keep the red that we have? Do I go for a darker red (ours are dark, but I really want thermal ones to keep out the Texas heat)? Do I go with copper curtains? Should I go neutral? I've been leaning towards neutral, but wonder if that may blend in with the walls too much? I'd love your feedback!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Of Course I Ate It


IMAG0286, originally uploaded by f_a_h.

It tasted like bacon covered in maple syrup. Only the bacon was cold and had congealed fat. So it was cold, congealed bacon fat and maple syrup. Weird.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Easy Updo that Leads to Easy Curls with No Heat

I have to thank Meredith for posting this video.



This look is seriously SO EASY to do. It takes me about 5 minutes. Like the video says start with your hair mostly dry. I usually wear my hair up all day and then the next day wear it as curls. Let me tell you one thing. MY HAIR DOES NOT CURL. I have tried everything. Usually I have to sleep in foam rollers and even then they don't last all day. I did this, wore curls the next day and they stayed. No fallen curls. No having to touch them up with a curling iron later in the day. This totally works and it's so easy to do.

Here I am with my hair up:

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and here it is down.

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I LOVE the look while it's up. The first day I did it I got 80 million comments about how cute it was. Strangers stopped me to ask how I did it. It's such a cute look and really is so easy to do. Try it! You'll love it!

Monday, June 13, 2011

I Survived Bikram

Two things about me:

1. I HATE to work out. Hate it. No matter how much of a routine it becomes, I still hate it. No matter how fun or how easy (only to hurt later) and no matter who I go with I still hate working out. Unfortunately, I've hit a point in my life though where I HAVE to do something no matter how much I hate it.

2. What do I hate even more than working out? Sweating. Ugh. I hate to sweat. Yes, I live in a ridiculously hot state. We believe in a good AC. One that requires you to cover up sometimes it's so cold. The only kind of workouts I tend to do are ones where it feels like I'm getting a nice good stretch in and feel like crap the next day. The least amount of effort for the best result is my kind of thing.

So why the hell would I take a hot yoga class? Well I do like those nice stretchy kind of workouts and I've always heard great things about it. So about a month ago I purchased a Groupon for Bikram Yoga and finally used it this weekend.

A few things to know about Bikram:

Be sure to hydrate well the day before. Clear pee is what you want.

It's 90 minutes long. It will seem like FOREVER the first time.

Wear form fitting clothes that are comfortable and let you move. You don't want to wear pants. Find some running shorts. You probably want to stay away from cotton. Both times I've worn a small form fitting t-shirt. I have a tank but for me I need something to wipe my hands and face on. I haven't worn a tank yet, but I have one. A lot of people will wear next to nothing. There are a lot of bathing suit like clothes in that room. Just don't wear anything baggy. It'll weigh you down.

There's a lot of water rules. You can't drink until after the fourth pose, when your instructor tells you it's ok. It's about 20 mintues into the class. After that you can only drink between poses. I recommend not drinking towards the end when you're doing a lot of bending a curling type poses. Both times it's made me want to throw up.

Take a full bottle with you and another for after class. Keep that one in the cubby you'll want it after class. Your water will also start to get warm as you drink more and the class goes on.

The instructor doesn't do the moves with you. She or he just walks you through them. As a beginner you'll be in the back of the class and can see what the others are doing. I've taken a few Body Flow classes and none of the moves were new to me. You can see all the moves here. There are 24 total moves and two breathing exercises. You do each move twice.

You'll have to take a yoga mat and a towel. You put the towel on your mat and you'll need it. You're so dang sweaty you will sweat through that towel. I also take a large rag to wipe my face on. It also comes in handy to lay your face on if you're tall like me and your towel isn't long enough. You may also want to bring a change of clothes or something to sit on in the car.

You can't leave the room. If you feel like dying you just lay down. Everyone does it. Don't feel like you can't or that you're cheating if you do.

So how did my first class go? I'm not going to lie - I walked into the room and almost walked right back out. It was HOT. (I think it's supposed to be 105). I didn't think I'd be able to make it.

In fact, I wasn't sure that I'd make it through the first breathing exercise. My arms STILL hurt from it.

I think I had to lay down about 4 times my first time. I made it to the 6th move before I felt like I was going to throw up. I never felt dizzy during the class or like I would faint, it was just this naseous feeling and I really did only get that feeling when I would drink and we were about to curl up or something.

I took my 2nd class the very next day. This is actually recommended. I did really well the 2nd class. I felt great and I didn't have to lay down once.

I can pretty much do all the moves. They're actually very easy and made for beginners. I've picked them up in other classes I've done, but you really don't need to know them before you go.

After my first class I came home and ate lunch and then took about a two hour nap. After my second I was still exhausted, but not quite like I had been the day before.

I sweated like I've NEVER sweat before. I sweat through every piece of clothing and both towels. I was DISGUSTING. After the 2nd class it was kind of refreshing. I never thought I'd actually LIKE to sweat like that.

In fact here I am in all my sweaty glory.

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I admit to fixing my hair before. It was one hot mess during class, but honestly you just don't care. You really don't care what you look like or what the others look like. You really are just pushing yourself to get through the class and to get through each move one at a time.

I think that's what I like about the class. It's nice to kind of sweat it out and to push yourself. Once you've done one of the classes it's this great sense of accomplishment. You lasted 90 minutes of intense heat while working out and lived to tell the tale.

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Thursday, June 09, 2011

Updates

I was informed by John that I had "screwed up his post!"

Apparently I had two of the same pictures and had left off his closing which "was the best part!"

I have fixed my errors and the post has been updated.

Love ya babe!

Love This

I had started making this wrap when it was still cold. Granted it's also going to Reno where it may still be cold or hot the way it's currently going across the US. It's not that it took long to knit. Not at all. I knitted it on size 15 needles and it went really fast when I worked on it, I just sat it down for awhile before I started up on it again.

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At first I wasn't a fan. I wasn't sure of my yarn color choice, but as I went on, I really started to love it. The finished product? LOVE. I may make myself one just like this.

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It's so light and soft. I love the eyelet design. It'll also let it be worn more since it's not solid and too heavy or hot.

Wouldn't it look great as a poncho?

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I see adding a big button to the front to keep it close (and obviously it'd be worn evenly unlike the picture) I'd knit it wider obviously as well.

Here is the pattern I used. It was originally intended as a charity shawl for hospice patients which is a great idea. I followed the pattern, using size 15 needles and homespun yarn. I didn't end it at 42 inches. Mine is well over 6 feet. It's taller than I am. I just based it on another wrap I had but didn't measure it.

Monday, June 06, 2011

Home Improvement - By John

This project originally started when my loving wife decided that she didn’t like the lights in the bathrooms. She found some that she really liked, so after a wasted afternoon, some drywall patch kits and a few shocks, I finally got the lights installed. Suddenly I realized that the lights made the pink in the surface of the vanity really stand out, so I HAD to have new vanities. We tore out the old ones only to realize that there was no tile under them and the tile in the bathroom was unmatchable, so all the tile had to go. Here is my adventure:

This is the bathroom with everything in it when we started.

1 Bathroom

This is the bathroom minus the towels and everything moved out.

8 Bare

Tighten the knobs and unscrew the hoses with an adjustable wrench. Loosen the J bend from the vertical pipe going to the sink. Loosen and remove the screws holding the vanity to the wall. Use a putty knife to scrape between the vanity and wall, loosening the silicon there.

12 Loosen Hose

Vanity is OUT!

14 Vanity Free

Vanity takes a ride on my skateboard.

16 Vanity Skateboard 2

Remove the bolt covers and loosen the nuts with an adjustable wrench and break the silicon seal with a putty knife.

22 Remove Nut

Cut off the water to the toilet, flush it, and remove remaining water with a sponge or a wet/dry vac.

27 Flush N Vacuum Top Tank

Toilet is gone! Note the wax ring all smashed into the drainpipe.

31 Removed Toilet

The toilet takes a ride on my skateboard.

33 Toilet Skateboard

Remove the wax. I used a papertowel and a heat gun, heating the wax till it melts then using the papertowel to gather up the melted wax.

35 Remove Nasty Wax

Wear your safety gear for this next part: gloves, glasses, hair cover, boots and dirty clothes. Yeah, I know I look awesome.

38 Wear your Safety Gear

BOOM!!!

40 BOOM!!!

Breakin up some tile.

41 Broken Tile

Now it’s broken! Note the rag I put in covering the drainpipe to protect us from odors and the pipe from broken tile.

43 Broken Tile 4

Scrape all the residue off the floor. Notice I also sanded and then texturized some spots on the walls that I wanted touched up.

47 Clean Floor - Paint Ready walls

Find the center of the floor and mark a tile there. This will be the first tile that you lay down and all the other tiles will be placed according to this center tile, so make sure to measure and then measure again.

51 X Marks the Spot

Lay the center tile and then lay tiles towards one wall and keep placing them in such a way that you don’t tile yourself into a corner. I borrowed my stepdads wetsaw for this part, which is about the only way to cut so nicely around the drainpipe and all the small side pieces too. Use plastic tile markers to keep all your tiles nice and square.

54 Laying Tile

Tile all done and primer is now on the wall.

56 Tile Laid

Paint and tile markers removed.

59 Painted Walls

Grout the tile. Make sure to clean all the tiles off really well or you will have a rough and tough job getting it off later.

61 Grouted and Tape Removed

Toilet is back. I usually get a new wax ring and bolts. I also made sure to upgrade the water control valve in the toilet so that it flushes quickly with one little push of the handle.

62 Toilet Installed

Vanity is back in. I did have to replace the J bend and the vertical sink drain pipe because I broke it while trying to fit it all back together.

67 Vanity Installed

Before:

8 Bare

After!

68 Vanity Installed

You really can’t tell that all that much work has been done, but it took our bathroom from a work in progress to a place where you can drop a deuce in peace. This was a really miserable job for a small gain, but it was a project that Needed to get done once it got started. Like most home projects I almost wish I had just moved into a hotel for a few days and hired a professional, but then I reflect on the money that we saved and how much I learned in the process, and I feel like I can dust my hands off and enjoy a cold beer after a job well done.
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