Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Getting Twiggy with It

 Well good grief, kids!  It has been a while but I'm optimistically saying that, I'm back!  That's right, I'm making an effort to get back to my old "the glass is half full" mantra of old.  Things have been pretty busy and I have tons to share with all of my sweet friends out there!  Let's start with this little project I did back in the fall.  Here's a teaser...

The story of the this weathered branch is pretty funny and just seeing this object in my house brings me great joy due to the way it arrived in our possession.  A couple years ago we were at the lake with my folks and spotted this tree that had surfaced when Lake Texoma was way down.  I had told my dad how I had seen places like West Elm and Urban Outfitters selling pieces of driftwood for a pretty penny.  After pondering this he said that he could snag me a choice piece for no pretty pennies!  

With determination on his face and mission in mind he shimmied up the dead tree (he was surprisingly agile) and began pushing and jumping on a good looking branch.  You and I can both see where this is going, right?  With a loud "crack" the branch fell free.  As did my dad.  No worries, kids, he ninja-rolled out of this fall and shot up ten feet down the beach in victory!  And I got to go home with this killer piece of driftwood.  This is what it looked like in our last house.  Enjoy this extra dark pic, yeesh. 

As you can see it was a little lackluster.  We did eventually mount it on the wall with D rings but it still left much to be desired.  And what could be more desirable than a golden staff?  Scratch that, golden rod?  I give up, there is no way to describe it with out sounding grossly inappropriate.  (Insert your own gold member joke here)

Here is how I did it:  When using a piece of "found in nature" branches in your house it is a good idea to let it bake in the sun for a few days to make sure that a) it is completely dried out and b) that there are no critters inhabiting it.  Next, I threw it on a piece of cardboard in the backyard.  When using spray paint make sure that you wear a mask, protective glasses and do it in a well ventilated area.  


I used one of my favorite spray paints from the Rust-Oleum "Metallic" collection in Gloss Gold.  The idea to paint it gold came to me while staying at a friend's amazing apartment.  She had this fabulous, gold, chunky piece of driftwood sitting on a credenza in her bedroom.  Too cool.

The paint looked great and gave the driftwood more character and presence on the wall.  The light from the lamps up-light the piece at night, which makes me giddy.  Don't judge me, I'm easily giddied.

Oh and don't mind all of the dates on the photos.  Somehow my camera is stuck on the feature and won't let me remove them...anyone know how to fix this little problem?  It's a Cannon.  Happy Tuesday!

Friday, August 10, 2012

You Can't Spell Friday without DIY

The DIY bug bit me on the (insert body part here) after seeing these cute burp clothes at Arabella's in McKinney. I bought a pack of onesies and then headed to my local JoAnn Fabrics for the rest of my supplies. 

Items needed:

1. Onesies or burp cloths

2. Fabric, you can buy small bunches of precut assorted fabrics

3. Stitch Witchery fabric bonding web (you can sew on your fabric as well for added durability)

4. Fabric scissors

5. Cross-stitch needle and thread

Here is how they turned out. They aren't perfect but I think that gives them character. These are pre-ironing photos. If they were teenagers one might say, "...they've got great personalities!" 

All in all it was pretty easy and I can see where they get better looking with practice. And sleep.

Any of you working on DIY projects? Please share!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Keep Austin Weird?

Mission accomplished, Austin.  You are weird.  Now get over yourself!  

My family moved to Austin back in early spring from Midland, TX.  When we found out we were moving everyone said how lucky we were to have the opportunity to live in Austin.  Well, as harsh as it sounds they could not have been more wrong.  At least in part.  Here is the deal with Austin - it is beautiful beyond belief, there are cool restaurants and bars everywhere, tons of things to do to outdoors and it's the capitol of our great state of Texas.  So where is the disconnect?  Why does this place rub me the wrong way all day?

It is odd to say but the short answer is the "Austin-attitude."  I'm not so cynical that I lump all people who live within Austin city limits into this demeanor.  There have been some lovely people that have popped up in my path over the past six months, and to them I say, 'thank you!'  But the "Austin-tude" comes from the ridiculous idea of "keep Austin weird".  Those that apply to that way of thinking are so hell-bent on keeping Austin unique and special are the same ones that want to make sure that everyone else agrees with Austin being the best most revolutionary place to ever exist (sorry Rome) but also insist that you not stay too long.    

These folks insure that you will not want to linger longer than your allotted vacation time bound by the dates of Austin City Limits or SXSW.  There is such a push to keep people from settling in Austin that the roadways were not expanded for years as a deterrent (so the conspiracy says).  Lucky for me and all of those that sit in traffic that rivals DC patterns, change is a coming!

I don't want to feel this way about the city that I live.  Almost everyday I try a new experiment to lighten the mood.  Yesterday, while walk/jogging - wogging, around Town Lake I made a point to smile at every single person that I passed and in some cases say, "Good morning".  This is a slightly tainted  experiment because I have a baby and while pushing a baby around most people will smile, if not for me, for the adorable smiling pink thing bouncing along in my stroller.  Alas, this was not the case.  Blorp.  

This entire blog post came into words after reading an essay this morning entitled, "Why I Hated Dallas - and How I Fell in Love with It" by Sarah Hepola.  She is from Dallas but did not appreciate it in her youth.  She was out as soon as she was able and was off to places like NYC and my very own Austin.  She was a lover of Austin and its weirdness as well.  When she visited it years later this is what she found...  

"Meanwhile, I visited Austin not long ago, and I was gobsmacked by shiny new construction by the lake, which I described in a way that many other people have: “This feels very Dallas.” I adore Austin and always will, but the hippie-dippie college town of my youth has transformed into a yuppie heaven where everyone seems to be a marathon runner, a bicyclist, a doting parent or all three at once."

I love Dallas.  I also went to the school that all Longhorns love to hate located on the other side of the Red River.  Maybe these are the reasons that I don't fit in here.  Somehow the Urban Outfitter clones know that I don't belong...but I will win them over.  Eventually.  But back to Sarah's excerpt - what cracks me up is how there are many parts of Austin that look like Dallas.  I live in one such area.  But what tickles me even more is that majority of these Austin people that don't exude the Southern Hospitality that Texas is known for are not in fact from Austin at all.  It seems as if majority of the snooty-poots aren't even from Austin!  Let's us share the city, please.  We can all keep it weird, or fun, or granola-y, or whatever together with whomever else wants to come play.   

While it might take a while, this place will become home.  While I have no friends yet I know deep down that they will come.  Fitting in is not the end goal, it's acceptance.  Acceptance of my having moved here, of the fact that I don't bleed burnt orange and acceptance of the fact that I'm from Dallas. For now I'm going to enjoy all of the beauty and great things that come along with Austin and take the Austin-tudes with a grain of salt.

Wish me luck!  It is very pleasing that The Coffee Bean has made its way to the capitol of Texas.       

Monday, July 16, 2012

Favorite Things Monday

This has been quite a week, mostly because it was fairly mundane.  However, there were a few perks and I want to share them with you because I do not have any updated photos of the house to share yet!

New Tory Burch sandals...heart. Pardon the unflattering camera angle.

It's like butta, doll.
Chew Beads - This line of non-toxic jewelry is super cool and perfect for that special little one in your life that is cutting teeth and love to eat your accessories.

              Charles Bangle in Stormy Grey

              Hudson Necklace in Turquoise

Lululemon Gear

              Run: Pace Setter Skirt

              Run: Speed Short

             Sun Sprinter Short Sleeve

             Tie and Fly Tank

Lancome mascara base - Cils Booster XL

Summer Staple- La Croix Sparkling Water

Any of you have favorites that you want to share?

Monday, July 9, 2012

Beach Babies

While not posting on my blog I've been busy catching some sun in Mexico with my family.  This was the first vacation that we have gone on with the entire family - my folks, my brother, his wife and my wonderful nephew, and my crew and I!  We actually made it with two babies under the age of three on a two hour plane ride and seven days in the Caribbean, successfully.  We had a blast.

 If you're a new parent than you might not have come to experience a vacation with a wee one yet.  It makes for a completely different getaway than you might be accustomed to.  We spent a great deal of time around the kiddie pool and timed the reapplications of sunscreen and nap times around happy hour, but it was super fun.  Banana Monkeys for all!  It goes without saying that one needs a few Banana Monkeys to feel comfortable enough to walk around in a bikini for a week after having a baby.

 Little A really enjoyed the pool and was skeptical of the ocean (can't blame her).  She had issues with the sand being on her feet but no issue with it being in her mouth.  Sandwich, anyone?  She makes her mama and papa proud.

She, along with everyone else within walking distance of our resort enjoyed her Grandpa's very impressive sand pyramid.  He spent a couple of days perfecting his masterpiece and was rewarded with the best compliment an artist can receive, imitation by other sand-shapers.  We were all proud of him!

The best part of the week was seeing Owen and Adelaide enjoying some quality cuz time.  They were super adorable and entertaining.  

As you can see with the numerous photos in the same outfits we had a "photo session" night in an attempt to catch some good family photos.  Suffice to say, we had a great time and are looking forward to next year.

Thank you Nana and Grandpa for an awesome vacation!!!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

We bought a zoo!

Psych- we didn't buy a zoo.  That is just crazy, Dorff's don't buy zoos.  We did buy a house, though!  It has been far, far, far too long since I last posted and for the few of you that actually read my ramblings, I apologize.  The Hubs, Adelaide and myself have uprooted ourselves from Midland, TX and replanted in Austin.  Things could get weird.

Here is the new project!  Compared to our last house this one required very little (as in none at all) work prior to moving in.  Here is a photo tour that we took before we moved in all of our worldly possessions.
 Formal Living/Dining Room

 Family Room

View of kitchen and breakfast area from family room
Powder Bath
Master Bedroom
 Master Bath

Guest Room #1
 Adelaide's Room
 Guest Bath
Guest Room #2
There you have it; our new digs.  I will keep you all updated as to our progress as we take on the challenge of making our furniture and "things" fit into an entirely different place.  Joy!
Oh and since we last talked we found out that we are having another nephew!!  This will make for three sweet little boy cousins for Adelaide to rule over.  All hail Queen Adelaide!