Tag Archives: Shopping

Micro Kitchen Ideas

20 Feb

Today is a day for Shopping!

Right now I’ve been thinking on this kitchen in the new apartment. It’s tiny. I mean teeny weeny tiny. And we are kitchen people. We like to have a menagerie of spices on hand at all times and we have a pretty nice collection of pots and pans. Shawn being a professional chef and all… a fully stocked kitchen is an occupational hazard! So, I’ve been trying to find ways of saving space and making the place look nice all at the same time.

Ok, so this is the kitchen from the apartments I’m moving into… only without the new cabinets. We have those old white faced, wood trim cabinets. (the unrenovated unit was so much cheaper per month)

I took the picture from the apartment’s website.VERY small.

The first thing I’ll need to address is a spice rack. We have tons of spices and I hate keeping them in that tiny cupboard above the stove! I’m only 5’4… I don’t want to have to find a place to store a step-stool too. We can put the stemware up there and I’ll only have to get up there once in a blue moon, but the spices I use on an almost daily basis. I also don’t want the spices taking up precious counter space! I’ve already got enough things to do that between my coffee machine and cookie jar.

1. Magnetic Spice Rack

So there are plenty of magnetic spice racks on the market these days,

Ibut I’d like to conserve space at the same time. I found this idea over at www.addicted2decorating.com

I love the look of this. On her site she has instructions on how to make this great little spice rack, but I think to make it fit for what I need I might do this instead:

  1. cover the front of the freezer door in removable chalkboard contact paper.
  2. get a lightweight frame (from a thrift store will do) the size of or slightly smaller than the front of the freezer door
  3. spray paint said frame brown/gold and let dry overnight
  4. spray paint frame a fun color and using a paper towel gently brush away the paint from the tops of some of the details to let the under color show through.
  5. back frame with either adhesive or magnet strips.
  6. affix frame to the front of the freezer door
  7. Stick on magnetic spice tins and label with chalk.

I found some great spice tins on Etsy’s Salt City Spice

I like these because spices are so colorful and these give you a nice wide window in which to show them off! You can get a set of 8 for only $19.00. Here!

2. Pot Rack

So, we have a LOT of pots and pans. They end up taking up quite a few cabinets just on their own. Right now we have twice as much cabinet space as in the upcoming apartment and are still overflowing. We need some vertical stackage. So on that wall at the end of the kitchen, up towards the top I think we need one of these:

This would give me a chance to get some of the smaller pots and some of the utensils out of the cabinets. I think we could also keep the cereal boxes on the shelf up top (if not some nice decorative books). At a price of $79.99 I might wait for this one to hit the clearance shelves, but I still think that this will be a much needed addition. Get it here!

3. Decorate

Alright so once we get those two things out of the way I should have just enough room for my already crowded kitchen to squeeze into the new smaller kitchen. But then… I still have to look at it.

Shawn and I are big fans of our decor doubling as humor. We don’t take ourselves too seriously and neither should our house. So at the back wall beneath the pot rack I wanted to put a medium-sized framed and matted print of… The Swedish Chef. At first, we had discussed putting a portrait of a famous chef or an old wine label. But, when we saw this print from allprints.com we knew we’d been beaten.

We love the Swedish Chef. And this print is just enough of “Old World” meets “Ridiculous” for us. The pricing ranges all over based on a lot of variables. I think with a nice mustard yellow matte and a simple brown frame this could be a winner!

So those are just a few of my ideas so far. I hope you guys are having a great day! I am!

Parks and Poems

15 Jan

Today hubs and I decided to have a mini-adventure. That’s usually when we get in the car with absolutely no set destination and see where we end up.

First, we went to Home Depot to shop for home improvements (for that house we don’t own… it’s such a fixer-upper). We looked around and dreamt of kitchens and counters, bathrooms and patios. It was fun quizzing the staff about different counters and the energy efficiency of washers and dryers.

After that we headed for a long drive. It was such an awesome day out. It was sunny and cool, just warm enough to not need a sweater. We took the bug and headed out down country roads winding through woods and swamps, past lakes and farms. We rode about 4 towns over to a small artsy Victorian-styled town called Covington where we parked and proceeded to have coffee at a small independent coffee shop called St. John’s. What I love about St. John’s (aside from the awesome art and occasional live performances) is the tea. They have some fantastic loose-leaf teas. They have some awesome baked goods as well. Today I tried a chai spice cupcake. It was good but not amazing.

Once we were well caffeinated we headed out for a long walk around the town. We walked down the old-timey streets past small cafes and art galleries, took a turn down a little residential street and ended up in Bogue Falaya Park. It’s a pretty little place they used to take us during summer camp and on field trips when I was a kid.

Here are some photos we took:

We walked along the water and talked about life and plans and all that good stuff. It was really nice and relaxing. Afterwards, we headed back to the car (the long way).

On the way home we stopped at a thrift store. I picked up some more silverware and a few more mugs. I guess I should explain a little:

I was always plagued growing up by my mother complaining whenever she lost a knife or a fork because (I assume) she’d have to find replacements in the same pattern. So, I decided to solve this issue by never buying more than one of the same pattern. In other words every single piece of my silverware is secondhand and the only one of its pattern in the drawer. When you set the table it actually looks pretty cool (I think). We have a couple different (complete) sets of plates/bowls/etc. so those would be annoying to replace, but I did something similar with my glassware. I love colored cut glass. And there’s tons of it in thrift stores. So, I just pick up those lonely single cups/glasses etc.  The different colors all on the table (the one my apartment is too small for) looks awesome. When we move and I actually have a dining room to take a picture of this all in, I’ll show you. But, until then you’ll just have to imagine.

Also at the thrift store I bought a book. It’s called The Limerick by G. Legman. When I tell you I have never laid my hands on anything so hilarious… I mean it. There are limericks in this book that would immediately turn my blog from it’s beloved PG-13 rating up to R. They’re so funny! I have chosen a couple to share with you. Trust me, they get MUCH worse.

It always delights me at Hanks
To walk up the old river banks.
One time in the grass
I stepped on an ass
And heard a young girl murmer, “Thanks.”

A nudist by name Roger Peet,
Loved to dance in the snow and the sleet,
But one chilly December
He froze every member,
And retired to a monkish retreat.

This book is downright dirty and pays homage to the “bawdy limerick”. I’ll have to get rid of it the moment I have children so I’ll have to read a lot of it first. They are so funny! Some of them downright gross.

But, enough of this horrid inappropriateness.

Since today is almost at an end I’ll skip my traditional to-do list. Instead I’ll write a “have-done” list.

TODAY:

  1. Woke up late
  2. Enjoyed breakfast out
  3. Went for a long drive to nowhere in particular with the windows down, singing all the way while hubs napped
  4. Had a fantastic cup of tea
  5. Went for a long walk through an old town
  6. Stopped to smell the roses
  7. Enjoyed the company of the man I love
  8. Came home and made dinner
  9. Watched tv until we were tired
  10. Now I’m off to bed

Goodnight everyone!

Rock and Stroll

13 Jan

I never really know what my posts are going to be about until I start typing. Sometimes I have ideas when I’m away from my computer and think to myself “I should write this down so I can write about it later”, but I never do. Or I think “I should take some pictures and I could blog about this later”, but I never do. Gotta work on that.

I’m in a kind of “babies-on-the-brain” mood again because my basal thermometer arrived last night and this morning was the first time I recorded my temperature on my chart. I’ll laugh my head off if I actually get pregnant this month and am left over with something like 20 OPK strips and a brand new hardly used basal thermometer. Of course, getting preggers this month would be a little bit of awesome.

Let’s talk about some of my favorite baby stuff!

Cribs/Furniture

I love the convertible crib sets because it makes so much sense! The crib comes with all the necessary pieces to become a toddler bed and then a full-sized headboard and footer! A lot of the sets include dressers and changing tables that become end tables when baby is older.

Although I love the look of things like this Scandinavian Cradle from Luxury Lamb… at $800 for a piece that baby will outgrow in a year or two it just make absolutely no sense (or cents… see what I did there?).

For the same price (and often times much less) you get a bed that stays with your kids for YEARS. All through their infant-teenage life as long as the construction holds up. My favorite one so far is this crib by Stork Craft sold at Target (for a whopping $229). I think I like it because of those 2 wider panels on it. As the kid gets older and wants new furniture not only could you paint the crib/headboard/thingamawijit but you could do some awesome DIY art type stuff on those panels to really personalize it and tailor it more to your kids interests. Heck, let the kid do it! (I was forever painting and repainting my walls and furniture as a kid. Loved it!)

Strollers

I think strollers are awesome. I totally drive a VW beetle. Where the [redacted] am I supposed to put a stroller?! I guess I’ll worry about that after I figure out where I’m putting the car seat but just for S&G’s here’s my dream-stroller:

It’s called Apple by iCandy. And frankly… it’s adoralicious. It also has an extendable handle which is suuuuper important because my hubbers is 6’5. He’s up there. It’s bad enough the poor dear works in kitchen where the counters are all built for average height people so he’s hunched over all day at work (his poor back). I see custom height counters in our future. So, this would be a fantastic thing for him. But, at a price tag of $449… paying for a massage may be cheaper. There are plenty of lesser priced strollers out there but I only have eyes for this one at the moment. (Just let me dream a bit)

Well I think we’ll stop here for today. Maybe tomorrow we’ll talk some more about baby stuff. Maybe not. Who knows?

TODAY:

  1. Work (TGIF!)
  2. Clean house
  3. Coffee?
  4. Nap (I’m sleepy)
  5. Continue reading A Feast for Crows by George R.R. Martin
  6. Sleeeeeeep

Eggs and Their Lofty Standards

4 Jan

So my husband and I are trying to get pregnant. Well, moreover, I’m trying to get pregnant and he’s graciously agreed to assist me in the matter. It has me excited. When we were married 2 years ago I stopped taking birth control. (I was never a big fan of it because I have some serious family history of blood clots and it always scared me that all the labels read some warning about clots.) I figured the pregnancy would happen whenever and that it would be ok and awesome that the right sperm met the right egg in just the right time all set in motion by nothing more fate. It was all very romantic. But, totally did not happen. Apparently my eggs are playing hard to get and his sperm just aren’t into the hassle of catty high-maintenance eggs like that. So, now it’s come down to “trying”.

Yesterday I ordered a basal thermometer. I’ve begun charting (sans temperature until it arrives) and even picked up a pack of 20 OPK strips. My husband’s mother said it took her 5 years of trying to get pregnant. Do you know how old I’ll be in 5 years? 30. It’s not that it’s old, it’s not. It’s just that I always wanted to have my kids while I was still of the 20’s nature. My mother waited until her mid-30’s to have children and I understand her reasons I just always wanted them sooner than later. Better late than never mind you, but that’s totally not plan A (well, I guess letting it happen on its own was plan A so this is plan B…or Plan A v2.0).

To save you all the gruesome details of my monthly cycle I’ll just tell you that we’re still in the early days and I’m anxiously awaiting day 7 which is when I’ll begin testing with the OPK strips (I figure no point in testing all month since it’s likely that I can somewhat predict at least around when ovulation should be). They say that even when you get it right though there’s only a 20% chance of makin’ a baby. I prefer better odds but it just means we have to throw the dice as often as possible (within the whole once a day parameter… the metaphor isn’t perfect, but you get it, right?).

Until then I’ve had babies on the brain. I’ve window shopped for everything from cribs to lullaby CD’s! I’ve been carefully molding my names list for boys and girls, collecting tips and info from mommies with newborns like how to save on baby clothes, trying to put some money away to help pay for the inevitable hospital bills (we don’t have insurance… that worries me a lot) and trying to repair my credit a little at the same time. The waiting and the anticipation is driving me somewhat batty.

As for now, the day must go on.

TODAY:

  1. Work! (It’s also Hub’s first day of work at his new job! Yay!)
  2. Clean house
  3. Drink coffee
  4. Go to gym
  5. Bathe Dog
  6. Cook dinner (gotta think of something to make with leftover chicken…)
  7. Try to finish Portal 2 (maybe just a couple tests… I’m in what has got to be the last chapter)
  8. Maybe get some sleep?