Tuesday, September 30, 2014

house in the 'hood

I hope you enjoy these house in the 'hood posts
as much as I love stalking looking at real estate.
I know you aren't supposed to look at houses
for the way they are styled but that's my favorite part.
Without further ado my favorite house in the 'hood...
for this week any way. :)
 
 
Stop here.
Inhale.
You know this is going to be good.
Don't get too attached though.
Its sale pending.
 
 

 



Seriously.
I think either a designer lived here.
Or a blog stalker.
Ha!
The kitchen isn't huge but even just
this little snippet makes my heart race.
 

 
Its an older house (1936)
and I love that they rehabbed it
and kept things like the old back door
 
 


but added Carrera marble, subway tile,
Viking stove, farmhouse sink...
 
 

 
 
 the glass front door above is a nice touch as well.
The responsible party for this reno
has got it going on in my humble opinion.
I wish they would add that information on har
for all of us house stalkers :)
 
This little office nook?
Perfection!
That's all I would need.
Er, by "I" I mean the new owners.
 

 
I love the way they painted the walls and the trim.
 
 

Mary Ann suggested we go all white in our family room
but the Mr. objected.
Still working on my subliminal messages to him.
One day...

Can you say gallery wall love below?
 

 
Let's head upstairs...
I love this master bedroom.
 

Love the muted colors and the bedding.
Again all white walls and trim.
Easy on the eyes.
 
Speaking of eyes
I spy monograms.
 
 


 
How cute is this bedroom?
 
 
Has me thinking of getting an new headboard.
Putting that on my list.
I like the way they stacked two Ikea Expedit shelves
on their sides to make a long console like table.
Perfect for toy storage.
I've been thinking of ordering one of those cardboard animals.
If I get one for the boys room I'll be painting theirs as well.
 
Look at this sweet nursery.
Again it looks so calm and serene
but it doesn't look like a budget buster.
 
 
Two more simple but chic bathrooms...
 



 

 


 
This house may not have a garage
but there is a bonus in the back yard.
 
 
 
 
Two words.
Guest house.


 
If my mother-in-law saw this
she would be voting us into this house.
 


 
We've toyed with adding a kitchen
to the guest apartment over our garage.
Toyed is the key word.
But this is a good example of a nice little kitchen layout
don't you think?
 
Lastly I'll leave you with a cozy little office space.
 

 
 Love this built-in desk area.
Especially the maps on what appears to be a cork board wall.
That would be an easy project right there.
That's what I do when I look at these houses.
I try to find elements that I want to copy recreate in my home.
What about you?
What's your favorite pick in this house?
 
 
 
all images via my beloved har
 


Friday, September 26, 2014

my tribe

 
 
 
 
 
 
I don't know about you but
I think people can be both
blessings and lessons.
 
Last week you may recall that I mentioned
one of our sons was having surgery.
The one with asthma and allergies.
Long story short he's had a time of it
over the past few years
and finally, finally
I listened to my heart as his mom
instead of
{God love them}
some of his doctors
that were of the wait and see mentality
or let's do another round of antibiotics.
Please know I'm not trying to bash
western doctors.
I'm just saying sometimes you've got to look
for another way around a problem.
I'll come back to this sentence in a minute.
I know I was trying to do a short story here...
ok so he had a CAT scan
and basically his head,
every sinus cavity
and his ears showed massive infection.
He lost 75% of his hearing in one ear,
not permanent thankfully
but the kid couldn't hear
nor could he breathe.
That was my line in the sand right there.
We booked him for surgery for last Friday
for procedures on his ears, his sinuses, and his throat.
{BTW...did you know adenoids could grow back?
Who knew?}
Cut to last Friday.
Last week in general in Houston was rainy.
Terrific because it became a little cooler.
So last Friday I send him to school
with the plan that I'll get him after attendance
and head to the hospital for a lunch time operation.
I decide to leave a little early with the rain.
I walk outside and find
that my street is flooded.
Lovely.
I start to panic because come hell or high water
I was getting my baby to that hospital.
He was having that surgery.
He had waited long enough.
So stupid me gets in my car.
Let me say here that in our little area
sometimes some of the streets do flood for a while.
There is a bayou a few miles away
and when that gets full from rain water
some of the sewers cant handle the load
so the streets flood.
Little by little they've fixed the drainage problem
but if you know anything about Houston
well, its always under construction.
I'll consider that a good thing
{growing = progress}
except on surgery days.
So I'm in my car.
Inching my way to his school.
Cars are pulled up into stranger's driveways.
Waiting for the waters to recede.
Some, dumb like me, are plowing through.
My inner voice tells me that every show
I have watched on tv about floods
talks about how people drown or get into trouble
because they do the same thing I'm doing now.
Learn from me people.
Don't do as I did.
So I listened to myself and turned around.
As soon as I made it back to my house
I started texting everyone I could think of
with a big ie high sitting vehicle.
All the guys I knew were already at work and in meetings.
No go they said.
I'm.
Freaking.
Out.
at this point.
Bing.
My phone lights up.
My peep Lisa says I'll come get you.
My eyes got teary.
She said I'm on my way.
No! I told her.
Meet me at his school.
The streets around me are like rivers.
I'll meet you there.
I stuff my purse in a backpack I'd brought
with stuff in case we had to spend the night at the hospital.
I rolled up my jean capris,
put on my one dollar plastic rain poncho,
grabbed my umbrella and took off.
 
This is the end of my street.
 

 
That blue thing is someone's
now missing recycling bin
floating by.
Other sightings included full trash bags floating by.
it was a mess but by this point
I was just happy it was only drizzling.
Because I'm wading through the waters above.
By this point I've taken off my flip flops
and I'm barefoot walking though water
almost up to my knees,
trying not to think about what's in the water with me,
trying not to think about the check in time at the hospital,
trying not to think of hurting my hurt foot even more
because we had a 17 mile training run planned for Sunday.
For someone trying not to think
I was completely overthinking EVERYTHING.
After crossing the major thoroughfares
I finally got within a block of the school
and the only water was right up against the curb,
whooshing into the now working sewers.
So I put my flip flops back on so that I could pick up my pace.
Crossing the last street I stepped off the curb
and right out of my shoe.
I stop and go backwards to slip it back on.
And watch it go right down the sewer. 
Are you kidding me?
This day has got to get better from here.
I stand there debating what to do.
I keep walking.


 
 
I get to the school.
I walk inside.
A complete mess I'm sure.
Sure enough I see a dad of a classmate of my sons.
He looks me up and down.
Drenched.
Crazy neon poncho.
Dripping umbrella.
And one shoe.
Deadpan he says:
"Rough morning?"
Uh, yeah, you could say that.
We have 15 minutes to our check in time.
I grab my boy and head outside to where
our hero Lisa,
awaits in her chariot
which carried us swiftly and safely
 to our appointment right on time.
And that is why I love my friends.
Because they don't ask questions when you sound the alarm.
They say I'm in, let's do this.
Without my peep Lisa our boy wouldn't be breathing
clearly, deeply, and through his nose today
for the first time in nearly four years.
 
I hope I'm as good a friend.
If not I sure got a lesson in how to be one last Friday.
 
 
 
 
Lisa is no weirdo but she does tolerate my quirks.
I'm lucky to call her part of my tribe.
Thanks again Lisa.
I hope you know I treasure you. :)
 

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

snapshots from summer in Savannah

You may know that we do what I like to call
our annual pilgrammage to the deep South.
We take two weeks and drive out for a little tour
of the area where I come from.
Every year we try to think of fun things
to keep the kids busy (ie tire them out)
and also to keep them interested in returning.
We lucked out one day while we were in Savannah
and had a little date by ourselves in the downtown area.
We ate at The Olde Pink House.



Yes, its so old they still use an "e" on the end of the word old.
Built in the late 1700's its been a private home, a bank, and now a restaurant.
The only time I had been there before was for dinner before my senior prom.
Um, is it just me or is that a weird fact?
Another weird fact you already know
is that I have an iPhone camera and I'm not afraid
to pull it out randomly and take pictures.
Especially when there are beautiful floors to document,



old cabinets and paintings,


and more historical charm like the smaller doorways
since people tended to be shorter back then
{I didn't make this up...seriously}


 


 

If you ever visit Savannah definitely try to eat here.
The staff are all well versed in its history
and will give you a brief synopsis while you're waiting
on your delicious meal then encourage you
to walk around upstairs and down.
We were on a time crunch and passed
but I plan on going back next summer to eat explore more.

Over lunch as I was reapplying my trusty Burts Bees lip balm
I asked my husband to remind me to pick up some
Savannah Bee honey combs for my peeps in Houston
who first introduced me to its deliciousness
while we were in town.
I'd seen various Savannah Bee Company products online
but had never bought any before.
I was hooked on Burt you see.
But after devouring the honeycomb at Tarsy's
I went online to see if I could feed my new habit buy more honey.
I did some research and was happily surprised to see that
the main office for the Savannah Bee Company
was located smack dab on the island I grew up on in Savannah.
Small world moment.
Over lunch my husband in passing wondered aloud
if they gave tours of their place on the island.
Might be of interest to the kids he said.
Them?
I'm interested.
I need more honeycomb!
I called on the spot and they were so accommodating
since we were leaving in two days.



We were able to tag along with another small group.


No, I don't usually wear a hat...
you can't tell yet but we all had to don a bee keepers hat
with protective veils and I was oh so happy with that rule.



You can see one hive here...


 


but we walked right past it...

 


and into a secluded area...
that old thing you see here is from the old cabinet factory
that once set up shop here.
We used to ride our bikes past this place every day
during summertime to the 7-11
{dated myself...that's a convenience store for you young people}
that was next door
where we'd grab coca colas and candy bars
with our babysitting money.
Times sure have changed.

 
How cute is this?


Our tour guide Usher was brave to go veil-less...


Here he is stuffing the smoker with pine straw...


so that he could keep the bees calm.



Lifting out one of the screens...


 

 
Here he is letting the kids hold the screen to see how heavy it was.
My sister does not look amused :) does she
as he hands it to one of her kids.
Notice my youngest trying to push his way
to get right in on the action.
Notice how far back I was standing from the bees.


Usher gave a great lecture on bee keeping
and in case you're interested
as well as here too
Absolutely fascinating.
No one got stung although I heard a rumor
that you get a free tshirt if you do.
Not saying try that at home but still.
The best part was after the tour
we were able to shop around their storefront.
Holla!
Meet some of my newest obsessions...
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Love.
These.
Products.
 Seriously soothing.
I hate to tell Burt but there's a new honey sheriff in town
and this one's a queen bee.
In case you can't find a local retailer
be sure to check out their online store.
If you plan on visiting Savannah call ahead and book a tour.
You'll be glad you did. 
 
 


Friday, September 19, 2014

house in the 'hood

Happy Friday y'all!
Its been raining for days now here in Houston.
How about we look at some sunshine?
I love house stalking you know.
The day this one popped up on har
I sent it to my husband with two words in the subject.
Hint hint.
He wrote back with this...
This house has already been flipped.
I know you.
You want to flip one yourself.
Bulls eye.
Reads me like a book that man.
Plus it went sale pending in a hot Houston minute.
Let's take a look at some lucky duck's new pond...
 
They had me at herringbone.
 
 
 
I would eat off this floor.
No furniture needed for me.
 

 
I also have a thing for lights you know.
The one in the entry way?
Loves!
I've been saving this for a "high vs my" post
but its Friday so why not a little something extra...
 
 
Let's take a moment of silence for the kitchen.
 


Marble check.
Subway tile backsplash, check.
Furniture details on the lower cabinets, check.
New SS appliances.
Perfect paint colors, check.
 



A little command center off the kitchen
that leads into the butler's pantry
on the way into the dining room.
 


 
The downstairs study with loads of built ins....
 


with its own full bath.
A combo guest room if needed.
Perfect for aging in-laws.
 
 
Most of the homes around here built during the 90's
{I'm not judging because ours was built in '98, this one in '91}
have the ubiquitous wet bar.
We, like most updates around here, turn it into a mini-office.
This house has enough office space so they kept theirs.
I like love the way they updated it with marble.
 


 
One little thing I would have changed is
 I would have closed off the half wall.
See it here in this view from the front door?

 
 
That's just me though.
Let's go back to the positives though.
The open family room gets a lot of light.
Did I mention the floors yet? 
 


I want to refinish our floors so badly
but with one kid with asthma
I'll wait for darker floors in the next house.
Another thing on my to do list for our own home
is updating the fireplace surround.
Wish I could get a close up of this one...
 


 
Even with my bad eyes
I can tell that it looks like
what I've had in mind.
Think herringbone + marble.
Cant.
Wait.

 

Upstairs the great hardwood floors
continue in the secondary bedrooms...




The secondary bathrooms rock too.
This one connects the two bedrooms above...
 
 
Love the gray penny tiles.
 
Another secondary bedroom...
 
 
with its own bath...
 
 
Exactly what I wanted to do when we updated our baths.
#pickedthewrongcontractor,itsaverylongstory
#wontmakethatsamemistakeagain
 
The master bath...
 


 
I wish they would have framed the mirrors.
Gotta give the new owners a project to do I guess.
 

 

 
The master...
 


and last stop, the game room...


 

 
Hope y'all enjoy your day today.
No matter what chin up.
{I'm talking to myself too.}
One of our boys is having surgery today.
Lately he's been my glass half empty child.
This morning after I told him he couldn't eat anything
until this afternoon I expected him to get mad and ugly.
He genuinely surprised me.
He said that's ok Mom.
At least after this I hope
I'll start feeling better and be able to breathe better.
It will be worth it.
Pang pang.
My heart grew.
Praying for a safe surgery and a speedy recovery for him.
 
 
all images via har.com