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Every once in awhile I just get a craving to do something creative.  It's because I'm a Capricorn (one of my friends who is in to such things says).

I am able to be creative with our new house, but some things like the shelves that are taking 4 times longer than I thought they would to build, zap it.  And they're not even creative to begin with.

I'm not one to give decorative bed pillows much thought.  In fact, when I purchased a comforter 4 years ago, it came with decorative pillows that sat on the floor until I put them in a box to move and they stayed there until we got here.  So yeah...not really in to them.  

Mike on the other hand, is.  

As we were loading up a moving truck with some things Mike had at his parents' house after Christmas, since we had a truck, they gave us a few other things too.  Some of Mike's mementos, a comforter, and pillows that didn't work out for them, etc.  They weren't really our style, but I cut off the cover of the pillows,…
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Decorating on a Budget - Frames

You have the prints you love and you are ready to find some frames.  Frames are not cheap!

Here are some tips I've found to lessen the burden of frame shopping. 
1. Check out Michaels/Home Goods/etc.
2. Don't worry about the frame having hanging equipment.  Buy some of these.  It will greatly increase your options for frames and they are easy to add yourself.  Any frame can go on a wall now!

Pick out some prints and get to hanging!

Black Eyed Peas Tradition

Yesterday, December 30, Mike & I decided we would have Black-eyed Pea and Quinoa Croquettes with Mushroom Sauce from “Vegan with a Vengeance” by Isa Chandra Moskowitz for dinner.  (It's one of my favorite cookbooks and super delicious.  Do not skip on the sauce, it makes the whole dish.) 

We were out running errands and stopped at our first grocery store to find them sold out of black eyed peas.  We both thought it was odd until we remembered some people eat them on New Year's Day for good luck.  Apparently there are many stories behind this tradition: feel free to read some here.

We found some at the next grocery store, but there were quite a few people grabbing them and I had to sneak in and grab a can before heading to the register.  

We ate them last night, hopefully it's close enough to count for 2018!

New Home: Decorating - Tiny Step

Decorating a new to me space was overwhelming when I thought of the big picture and much more achievable when I focused on one room at a time.  For me, I picked the next room based on when I was inspired for the space.  Say what you will, but that's my process.

Step 1 that made me feel incredibly better.  Filling in holes with putty and painting over it.  WOW!  The biggest wow for me was this little space in our kitchen (which I think is meant for a TV - we will not be putting a TV there - how many TVs do people expect you to have!).  After I filled in the massive holes there and painted over them I couldn't stop looking at it and smiling.  I did not take a before and after picture because I had no idea how happy it would make me.  Here's the after though!

Note: we were very lucky and the previous owner left behind gallons of paint, which isn't too old to still use.  Hooray!

I can't even tell you how great it made me feel.  

I filled in the hole in the bathroom, hung u…

We Bought A House!

Do you feel like we have too many big life changes in the last 4 months to follow along?  I'm not going to disagree.  It's been a bit of a whirlwind to say the least.

Remember we started looking at houses in June and made several trips to St. Louis during the summer to see what was available.  We kept looking and looking.

Until Friday the 13th.  Yep.  We met our realtor in the morning to look at a few houses that caught our eye and revisit one we were still considering (this is after yet another one of our offers was not chosen earlier that week).  We were still looking in 4 different neighborhoods of St. Louis: Shaw (ultimately we decided this may be where we want to be with the next house, but it's a bit slow for us right now), Tower Grove South (my favorite), Tower Grove East (my second favorite), The Grove (Mike's favorite and spoiler: where we ended up buying).  Side story.  When we first started looking at houses and we were doing lots of walking around different n…

New City

I just got back from spending a few days back in Chicago and I'm ready to share a quick post on my initial comparisons of Chicago and St. Louis.

St. Louisans seem to grow up faster.  Luckily, Mike & I look young since so many St. Louisans our age are at a different stage in their lives.  In Chicago we fit right in with our peers.

Oh how I miss the liberal bubble of Chicago.  I went to my favorite gym class Wednesday morning before I left town and we all celebrated the Doug Jones Alabama win together, including our instructor on the microphone.  That would not happen in St. Louis.  

I do not miss traffic.  I do not miss it at all.  

I do miss the bus.  I still need to learn St. Louis public transportation options.  Yes, Mike & I plan to use it.  

I MISS STANLEY'S!  Stanley's, come to St. Louis please.  I purchase a bag of groceries every time on my way out of town.  Yes.  For a 5 hour drive.

I left Chicago today when it was 30 degrees.  I got to St. Louis and it was 60.  …

I Miss Books

One of the first things on my list to do after we move is get a library card and I am so excited!  I didn't set one up for our temporary housing because I didn't even think I'd have enough evidence to prove I was living there.  It was temporary.

When I was in Chicago a couple weeks ago, I picked up a few books with my still valid library card and it was wonderful!  So wonderful!  (My sister is graciously returning them for me.)

Both books I selected were quick reads and they were so good.  The one that is really sticking with me is The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah.  I cannot stop thinking about it.  It's historical fiction based on what French women did during WWII.  It's incredibly inspiring and incredibly sad.  I did a lot of crying during the book.  I guess I'm a pretty crier because Mike came downstairs, said hello, had a small conversation.  Then he touched my face and asked, "Why is your face wet?"  "Because I'm crying."

I highly rec…