My wonderful friend and her awesome husband threw the funnest “Yacht Social Club” themed party over the weekend, and it was just so beautifully thought out and designed, I could NOT help but snap away with the camera. Continue reading
Bonjour, bon ami!!!
It feels as though I have been running every day, and unfortunately I haven’t had a chance to update my little space here. Fortunately, my mother is feeling much better, and so I’m very thankful for that. And luckily, in between all the running around, I have been able to finish a couple home projects, one of which I am soooo excited about!!
Remember being a kid and playing with your coloring books, markers and crayons, and then discovering that you had amazing blank canvases in your house where you could create your brilliant works of art? You probably also remember the big trouble you or your siblings got into for turning those walls into your childhood art gallery.
You have probably seen recent home improvement blog posts like this one on Apartment Therapy about kid-loving chalkboard paint and chalkboard walls in homes that provide hours of entertainment and a true gallery for their masterpieces. I decided to use the chalkboard paint to create a functional wall in my kitchen, where finding a lose clean piece of paper nearby while I’m cooking or cleaning is nearly impossible. Now I have the best and most convenient post-it-note ever!!
Here are a few pictures of this very fun and very easy project:
Now I never have to worry about jotting down a quick note to myself that I’m out of milk, peanut butter, olive oil, paper towels or anything else that I notice I need throughout the day of cooking, cleaning or other. And not like when I was a kid, this girl will never get in trouble for drawing on this wall!
You can find chalkboard paint at your local home improvement store like (my personal favorite) Lowes. Depending on the size of the wall you want to paint, it can take you a few minutes to prep the wall with sandpaper and tape the trim, and twenty minutes to paint a first coat (it will go on very streaky and thin, but that’s okay – a second or third coat will cover it beautifully). After an hour or so, you can paint a second coat, and after another hour a third if you need it. Then two or three days later, you can christen your chalkboard wall by writing on it with chalk and wiping it off, thereby dusting it and making it ready for your everyday scribbling, drawing and reminder note writing!
I hope you have a wonderful holiday weekend, bon ami!!
Bonjour, bon ami!!
It has been a busy week for me, but I’m happy to say my mom is here resting with me and with the family, and we will be visiting her longtime doctor for a second opinion and hopefully some good advice on how we can keep her healthy and vital. Thank you all again for your kind thoughts and prayers – it has definitely helped!!
In between all of the chaos, I’ve been feeling a bit blue – not a sad blue, but rather a soothing happier blue, like turquoise. Perhaps it is because of all of the gorgeous images I’ve run across lately. In fact, I’m already feeling the ‘bedroom makeover’ itch because of a few of these pictures. Take a look!!
Well I’m off to be with the family and make sure my mom takes it easy. Perhaps we will do a little shopping since we’re so inspired by this beautiful turquoise color this week – a little bedroom or kitchen makeover?
Here’s wishing you all a beautiful ‘turquoise’ day in your own belle vie!!
I’ve been a bit busy with my 2012 Project Harmony work, and before I knew it some days had passed without updating the blog!! Apologies for that… but I’ve made great progress recently!
After revamping my desk area, I started tackling my closets, which is no small feat. But until I find a few last things to finish the closets, I’ve tabled them for now… Instead, I’ve moved on to a project that I started a while back. A couple months ago, I found a great article about saving a drab desk chair from becoming a curbside tragedy. I knew I had to do something with my own horrible black boring desk chair, and so the day after Thanksgiving I found a great fabric, and this past weekend my better half and I performed minor surgery – and voila! We are sooo happy with the results!!
The desk chair will also now be invited to come out when visitors are over!!
It was definitely a project that required two people, just to make sure the reupholstery fabric was taut. It was also very helpful to have a handyman to take the chair apart and put it back together afterwards. Removing the original fabric was very tedious – there were lots of staples holding it on, so removing them all was impossible. But be sure to use a canvas or upholstery fabric so that it is strong enough to handle the staples and tight pull.
After we finished the project, we realized we were bitten by the reupholstery bug – we can’t wait to find our next chair needing a facelift!!
Well I still have a couple weeks left in the 2012 PH, and I will have a couple more updates in the next couple of days to share with you.
How are your 2012 home improvement projects progressing? I would love to hear about your projects – help me keep up my motivation for these last two weeks!! 😉
Until the next progress report – continue living la belle vie, my lovelies!
In the blink of an eye, another week has passed faster than most of us can keep up. But it has been a great week for me, and I’m ready for a great weekend to boot.
A little (okay, a LOT) of self-realization and lists this week:
1. as much as I love a big fast paced city, I always yearn for some country…
2. just like Plush Palate, I also think the best way to bring life and vim to any space is through plants and flowers!
3. I could always decorate my walls with some wonderful mementos as opposed to pictures – new weekend project for me!!
4. I MUST make this chocolate lavender pie STAT…
5. my bedroom needs a major facelift, like this one – another weekend project on the list!!
6. speaking of bedroom, I MUST find a new sitting/reading chair for the corner.
7. where can I find some beadboard wallpaper?
8. I need to get back into a regular yoga routine.
10. I can be a pain in the ass – for putting up with me, my better half deserves lots of my thanks and love. I would be lost without him and his love.
This weekend will be a busy one: a surprise dinner for my better half because he deserves it ~ I’m continuing my 2012 Project Harmony ~ enjoying a “Thanksgiving in January” dinner party ~ hosting a small dinner party where I’ll be cooking my very first rib roast… Every day that I open the freezer and see it sitting their patiently, I start salivating like my dog!!!!
What great plans do you have for the weekend?? Be sure to do something positive for your community on Monday in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. After all, we have much for which to thank him, and still much work to be done.
Have a wonderful weekend, bon ami!!
This evening as a few office friends and I left our 9-5 gigs, I mentioned running to pick up a few things after work, like mason jars to begin making preserves. It is Meyer Lemon season, after all!!
And just as the words came out of my mouth, the thought crossed my mind that if it weren’t for the concrete jungle in which I live, one might never know I was much of a city girl, let alone a bit of a country girl too.
One work friend asked where I am originally from, and my answer, “San Diego,” was met with a bit of a chuckle, since San Diego certainly isn’t thought to be very ‘country.’ However, if you ask anyone who was born (in the 70s or earlier) and raised in San Diego, they would actually tell you a different story. I grew up in a small town of less than 40,000 people in a northern suburb of America’s finest city, where there was a lot of open farmland, even a fully functional (and quite pungent) dairy, avocado and citrus groves – a little bit of country surrounding the small growing metropolis.
I know that it is because I grew up with things like fresh local eggs, produce and open land that deep down inside, during those evenings of never-ending brake lights, stop-and-go traffic, and blaring sirens as background music… I yearn for the country, even though I always thought of myself as more of a big city girl.
So while my life is currently rooted in one of the world’s most exciting cities, I try to bring that little bit of country into my concrete & steel world. I can’t wait to start canning the Meyer Lemons for baking and cooking! And in getting in touch with my country side, I have found a number of great links with instructions, recipes and tips:
~ Introduction to home canning and preserving
~ 85 Recipes for home canning fruits & veggies from A-Z
~ The Kitchn’s roundup of 5 great canning websites
If you aren’t into the whole sterilization/hot water canning/pickling procedure, here are some gorgeous and novel (and relatively easy!) ideas for mason jars outside of home canning:
What do you do to bring a little bit of country into your fast-paced city life? Any suggestions for this country-turned-city girl?
Keep living your best belle vie, bon ami!!
As many of you know, I am in the midst of PH 2012, aka Project Harmony, and my early successful results were a precursor to my continued progress in this project!! As promised, I am here to update you on the liberating results thus far:
~ the mini home office ~
footnote: You’ll notice there are no ‘before’ photos. This is because my office space/corner was such a disaster, I couldn’t bear to actually use it as an office. It was more a place where opened and junk mail went to die… So I’ll let you use your imagination for the ‘before’ state. Here is ‘after’!! (I’m sooo happy!!)
And yes, that is my furry children’s window perch to the left, formerly a quilt covered leather bench, that has since been claimed by said furry children.
Now my office area isn’t an eye-sore in my living room. Instead, it is a pleasant little corner near windows where I can enjoy my cup of coffee or tea while I work, with storage for all necessary and wanted items, made cozy with personal knickknacks and photos. The missing element to this project is my reupholstered office chair (a current WIP!). Updates to that coming soon!
Here are a few more touches to my newly revamped office area:
~ bathroom organization ~
I didn’t realize that I needed help with some bathroom organization and storage, until my better half and I bought the wrong shelving unit from Ikea this weekend. We accidentally bought a small ‘Billy’ 3-tier bookshelf which didn’t fit the Kassett magazine boxes. So before disassembling the thing, we tried to find a home for it, and a home we found in the bathroom. Now we have a small space to hold guest towels, extra supplies and even guest toiletries, a number of which I happen to come across during this project! Overnight guests have use of new disposable razors, face wash, lotion, new toothbrushes and floss. Who needs a Holiday Inn?
I can’t wait to share the big changes in the hallway, linen and bedroom closets!! A lot of purging happening at the LBH HQs, and as much as I thrive in a random and somewhat chaotic world, this small bit of organization feels AB-FAB! Speaking of, did you catch the all new 2012 episode of Ab-Fab this past Sunday on BBCA??
How are your decluttering and organization projects going? I’d love to hear about your progress!!
For now, I’m taking a little Ab-Fab break with a glass of Bolly at my new desk (I WISH!), and I’m looking for things to file, throw or give away. I can’t wait to post my next progress report!!
Until then, may you all continue to live la belle vie, bon ami!!
- Project Harmony: Day 1 Victories!! (labellehibou.com)
Can you believe one week has already passed in the new year? I can’t… the week was a bit short at the 9-5 since we didn’t return to the office until Tuesday, but still – I awoke this morning thinking it was Thursday, and then smiled in delight when I realized it’s Friday!
I’m still in the process of PH (“Project Harmony”) and will have LOTS to update you over the weekend and next week. In the meantime, 2012 has started off ‘magnifique!’ thus far and so I thought I would share some of my Fri-Delight and inspirations from week one visually.
What do you have planned for this wonderful weekend?
Happy Friday, lovelies!!
- Project Harmony: Day 1 Victories!! (labellehibou.com)
I hope your 2012 has started off full of excitement and anticipation of many great things to come in the next year. Many people begin their year with resolutions and plans for change. I don’t like to formalize any resolutions, but I do like to start the year with a clean de-cluttered slate!
I would give an arm (maybe not an arm, but possibly a digit…) to be uber-organized and clutter-free like the above picture. So this year, I’m giving myself ONE MONTH to tackle a few projects I’ve wanted to tackle and haven’t yet.
AND… I will be updating you on my progress! I’ll even take REAL PICTURES of my befores and afters, so you can see my progress, and of course offer any suggestions you may see!
I’ve enlisted the help of a friend of mine who is a real-life ‘Monica Geller’ when it comes to organizing. She also has some great prep-taste!
Here’s an idea as to my next few weeks’ declutter activities and a peak into some of my upcoming progress reports-slash-blog posts:
1. Hallway closet: toss empty boxes, reorganize coats, repurpose unused laundry baskets
2. Corner desk tornado: enough said.
3. Downsize bedroom oversized chair
4. Old unused tvs!!!
Here are a few great suggestions and quick&easy suggestions for kicking off 2012 with a little less clutter and a lot less stress:
~ Real Simple created “The Get It Together Plan” with great suggestions and advice for starting and finishing the de-clutter projects (yes, it is rightly called “The Get It Together Plan”…)
~ Nate Berkus has some great ideas for being clutter-free in 5 days!
~ Apartment Therapy’s list of great articles and tips to a cleaner space with small and fast methods for everyday (not for 8 hours in one very loooong day…)
~ I found a GEM! ImperfectHomemaking has a fabulous series called “31 Days to An Organized Home” – AWESOME, VALUABLE and PRACTICAL suggestions here!
~ of course, the Queen of Home Charm, Martha Stewart, has some great ideas and inspiration for organizing the various spaces in your home.
~ and lastly, remember that this project doesn’t have to be just about throwing things away or bagging up stuff for the Salvation Army – look at it as an opportunity to find some unique and beautiful decor ideas and inspiration!! That’s what Brabourne Farm did – who wouldn’t love to organize their files and things in such a stylish way??
What kinds of cleaning/decluttering projects are you working on or planning? I’d love to hear your ideas!!
Well… I better get to work! It helps to know that there are a few people out there keeping tabs on my progress – that’s some motivation!!!
Wish me luck!!
It’s a cloudy Saturday here in Los Angeles today, and it’s after 12 noon already, but I’m still in my pajamas, enjoying the last of my coffee and some quiet time (for once). It’s amazing.
Since the holidays have everyone scrambling, planning, wrapping, cleaning, sweating, and everything in between… I wanted to bring a little serenity to your day and mine with just some prettiness ~ inspiring images that will hopefully bring a smile, an idea, or some quiet beauty to your day. Enjoy!!
I hope you have a beautiful and relaxing weekend, and if not relaxing, well at least productive!!!
bonjour, bon ami!!