Wednesday, August 31, 2011


I was thinking about what in the world I could write about tonight, since it's been quite a busy week with work I haven't had much time to stop and think. I just feel like I've been super busy. And then, I remembered that I haven't told you about the Tile Symposium that we went to last week. You may remember that's what sparked the whole cleaning out my closet and craigslist sales, in order to clean out the master bathroom that is currently a shell of a room. And by the way, we sold the bathroom cabinet! Woohoo. Now, if we could only sell the dressing vanity and get the condo rented (I think we are close).

Back to the topic at hand! So, DalTile hosted a Tile Symposium at their showroom in North Charleston, and I think Brian and I may have been the only architects on hand, there may have been a couple of others, but no one I knew. The audience was mostly installers, I would say.

The evening started with a vendor show of about 15 or so companies. The beauty of it, was that you had to collect the signatures of each vendor after you heard their spiel. Then once you collected them all, you could put your name into the drawing for the door prizes. It was a genius way to get everyone talking! And the even more awesome part of this, was they had an ice cream truck pulled right into the warehouse, providing free ice cream!

I also found a few tile patterns/styles that I liked that one of the vendors was representing. I'm not really a fan of the black and white combo, but solid white in this pattern would be kind of cool!

The actual symposium was held in the air-conditioned showroom (thank goodness) and the first hour was a little drab and left me thinking that maybe we were mislead in the invitation, which you may recall promised the following things would be taught:
  • proper troweling methods
  • stone tile installations
  • large format tile
  • new techniques and tools
  • glass tile and mosaic installation methods
  • membranes, backerboards and shower installations
I don't recall any of the above being mentioned in that first hour. Boo! However, there was a Chick-fil-A buffet set up, which was A-W-E-S-O-M-E.

And then, there was intermission, which involved 15 minutes of all you can eat cookies, brownies, and candy bars. Which kind of made up for the hour of boring code talk. We also had a chance to take in the showroom tiles.

The ones in the window were the linen tiles we've shown you before.

Can you see the excitement in Brian's face?

Soon enough, the second half of the class started and the best part was the demonstrations. I only wish there had been more. It was quite informative, teaching us "proper troweling methods", but that's about all. It was worth our time though. Why, you ask? Because do you remember that I mentioned door prizes? Um yeah, and you had to be present to win, which BTW, there weren't a lot of people left by the end!

They started drawing names, and about three or four prizes in, they called Brian's name! He actually won 250 lbs of thinset mortar! Yes, please! We can definitely use that!

Then they were almost to the end, and they called my name! I won this awesome "Daltool Grouting Kit"! And again, yes! We can definitely use that too!!


So there you have it, we have knowledge, we have thinset, and we have a grouting tool kit. All we need now is the tile! And since we ordered our kitchen slate tile from DalTile (and got a good deal), I think we have a source for tile too!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


Well, not really! It was the only -tion word that I could come up with that alludes to keeping something clean! Like my floors.

For 6 months now (yes, we've officially been living here for 6 months!), we've had a scrap piece of our remnant carpet that we installed in the bedroom, sitting at our front door. Pathetic, right?

I mean, everything is decorated so nice, and then we have this scrap. Shameful.

At my condo, I had made a doormat for my screened in porch, out of samples from FLOR. They are a company that makes carpet tiles, and they are generally quite expensive, although their 6" x 6" samples are priced at 3 for $5. Pretty cheap, right?

And unfortunately I don't have a photo of that previous mat, probably best since it was pretty ugly thinking back on it! Nevertheless, reminded of my previous doormat, I decided why not make another? So I set out to find a fun, funky carpet sample, which FLOR has many of. But, alas I went with something a little more muted. After all, I don't really want to draw attention to the doormat. It's different if it were the main rug in the space, like under the dining room table or something, but a doormat!

So, I went with Lacebark Pearl.

I realize it's kind of plain, but I figured it would be a nice, neutral compliment to the curtains. And I could jazz it up with some quarter-turns! For those of you not familiar with that term, it just means that you alternate the pattern, so vertical stripe, then horizontal stripe, then vertical... and so on.

I ordered 12 samples, since I figured I could either do a 30" x 12" rug or a 24" x 16". See below for configurations.

Here is the problem. We don't think either one suits! We really like the depth of the first one, and closer to the width of the second one! Kind of like this, but with three more pieces (that I just ordered).

Seems like this will work best with the door width. Until my other samples arrive, will just go ahead and assemble without the 2 extra pieces for now.

So to attach them to one another, I just flip the samples over, and here's the secret (use duct tape) to hold them together. Works like a charm.

So, for $20.04 (+5.01 more), I have a nice FLOR doormat! Bye, bye old leftover carpet scrap! Actually it's temporarily living in the laundry room. Maybe I can do 'funky' in there!

Even though it's not finished yet, I still love the simplicity of it. It compliments not only the curtains, but the area rug, and the wall color. Can't wait for my other samples to arrive! Do you have any FLOR carpet in your house? Did you buy an actual rug, or are you cheap like me?

Sunday, August 28, 2011

up for auc[tion]

I've decided to sell a few things, in order to clear room for 1.our new bathroom, and 2.stuff in storage that still needs to fit into our house! Therefore, I've posted the first couple of items on Craigslist, but my fear is that some of you may want first dibs! So, without further ado, if you are interested in either of these things, let me know! Price is negotiable. ;)

This first one we originally bought for our first house, since the bathroom was so small. It's an over-the-toilet cabinet, in white. We bought it at Bed, Bath, & Beyond when we got married. You can see the store advertisement here. But here, you get a magnificent deal! If you'd like to read more about it, visit our craigslist ad!

The next piece we purchased from the estate sale that was held at our house before we moved in. In other words it was Miss Julia's and although we love it (otherwise we wouldn't have purchased it), it turns out that we don't have room for it. Since we still have family heirlooms in storage that we'd rather put to use, it seems this beautiful dressing vanity will have to go.


As you can see from the photos, this is a 7-drawer Drexel vanity with all rosette handle hardware intact. It has an attached swivel mirror with finial detailing. Unfortunately, the dressing table itself is not in the greatest condition. There are several scratches and the veneer is peeling/has peeled in some spots. I originally had big dreams of restoring this, but it's fairly low on the priority list, and since there's no perfect place to put it (say that 3 times fast), it must go. Find it here.

In other news, another craigslist post that we've currently updated is my condo. Yes, it's true, our perfect renter found her own condo to buy, so she is now a homeowner herself. Even though she hasn't been in there very long, we knew that she was looking to buy a place, and had agreed that as long as she gave us 30-days notice she could break her lease. The good news is, there have already been several people interested, and we have a couple of showings set up for this coming week. Let me know if you know anyone interested in a condo on James Island!

So there you have it. Cleaning up and cleaning out. I'm sure there are other items that will be up on the auction block soon. See anything you are interested in? Leave me a comment, and I'll be in touch!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

sky exhibi[tion]

We were supposed to go to the Charleston Home + Design Show Jazz Party  last night, but it was postponed due to the hurricane threat. Kind of silly, since we've barely even had rain, but hey Charleston County also cancelled school on Friday, which was pretty ridiculous! It's definitely windy out there! The news just said that the winds are up to 38mph at the moment. So, since our plans were cancelled, we went to our brand new Trader Joe's and stocked up on deliciousness. And then put on our pajamas about 4:30pm! Settling in for the night! But then about 8pm (from the couch), I saw the sky outside was gorgeous! Brian grabbed the camera and ran out to the yard...

We grabbed our bikes and headed down to the Ashley River, to a spot we love to go. Turns out that about 20 other people had the same idea!

But the view was great. It's truly hard to capture the colors, it was quite orange, although most of our photos look pink. I've got to read that damn camera book!

The water is so high! Usually this is marsh, but last night the water came right up to the fence!

You can kind of see how windy it is! No, that's not my pajamas, I did put on clothes.

Love the sky in these pictures... you can see an airplane in the second one!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Charleston adora[tion] - August 26, 2011

Well, well, well, seems as though last week’s Charleston adora[tion] came and went without a post, and nobody noticed! Or did you? After the Beer Tour, I figured that was enough love for this town for one week, so I skipped the Friday post. So sorry!

However, we are back this week with another installment. The rules state that we have to visit the place within the same week as posting about it, so this is actually from Tuesday!

Brian and I are usually pretty good about supporting the RiverDogs, our hometown baseball team. However this season, we’ve only made it to one game. Yes, 1. Ooh, that’s not good. And we had planned on seeing them Labor Day weekend for an event to support the local College of the Building Arts. But with a wedding to attend and the prospect of a visit to my mom’s lake house for the holiday, we were realizing that we might want to go ahead and get to one more game before the season ends altogether!

I enticed Brian with the Kraft Singles Tuesday Night Tickets, where you can buy one and get one free if you bring in the wrapper of your Kraft Singles. If you’d like more info, click here. So we rushed home from work to change clothes, only to find that our Kraft Singles were without a wrapper. At some point I guess (since I’m the only one who eats Kraft Singles around here) I discarded the wrapper and left the singles just floating around in the cheese drawer. Oops.

We reasoned that at $6 per ticket, it was probably still worth it to support our team, and we decided to go out to the ballpark anyway! Phew, that was close. What would I have written about this Friday?

So on to The Joe, as we locals like to call it. Officially it’s the Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park, named for Charleston’s beloved mayor, who’s been in office since I was born! No seriously, since I was 8 months old. That’s 36 years. Wow.

And since we are sharing interesting stats, I’ll go ahead and get some other facts out of the way (according to Wikipedia):
·         The Joe is also home to The Citadel baseball team, since the campus is right there. And the land once belonged to the school.
·         The Southern Conference (which The Citadel is part of) has hosted their last 10 conference baseball tournaments in this stadium.
·         It was built in 1997
·         And seats 6,000 people

As for the RiverDogs, here’s some fun facts about them:
  • They are owned by Bill Murray, who actually comes to a lot of the games. We’ve seen him there, although not this time.
  • They are affiliated with the New York Yankees
  • They’ve had lots of names over the years, and various affiliations with different teams and leagues:
    • the Seagulls, aka the Gulls (1886-1920)
    • the Palmettos, aka the Pals (1920-1922)
    • the Rebels (1942-1953)
    • the ChaSox (1959)
    • the Pirates (1973-1977)
    • the Patriots (1977-1978)
    • the Royals (1980-1985)
    • the Rainbows (1985-1994)
And ever since 1994, the team has been known as the RiverDogs. There is your history lesson for this Friday, now let’s get to the good stuff! I mean really, check out the view!

I love The Joe. It’s such a beautiful setting, nestled on the marshes of the Ashley River. Sunsets are gorgeous here and the weather, with our weird mix of hurricane threats and shocks from earthquakes three states away, has created a ‘calm before the storm’ effect that made for an amazing evening to be outdoors. This was also a double-header since the previous nights game had rain.

With beers in hand, we scouted out the 2-hotdogs-for-$3 special that the bartender clued us into, and found our way to the top deck to enjoy the view. Oh yeah, 4 hotdogs later (between the 2 of us) we had Tony the Peanut Man's boiled peanuts as well! Since we had General Admission tickets, we could really sit just about anywhere, and this was especially true due to the lack of crowd to be had. I’m assuming with school starting back and it being a Tuesday that most folks stayed home?

Most folks EXCEPT the entire freshmen class of The Citadel, as well as some upperclassmen thrown in. Although they all cleared out, I’m assuming for a 9pm curfew? There were cadets EVERYWHERE. And at some point there was a cadet tug-of-war on the field that the upperclassmen won 3—0. Poor knobs.

See all those grey figures in the stands? Those are cadets.

We had a little surprise after the first game ended, and just before the second game started, a guy with a clipboard approached us and asked if we would like to be ‘upgraded’ to the Ashley Seats behind home plate! Um, yes please! The only stipulation was that we had to be in our seats before the 3rd inning because the camera would be on us for the whole stadium to see us on the jumbo-tron! Awesome. Oh, and “no gang signs, by the way”. Do we look like the type of people who would use gang signs?

View from our Ashley seats behind home plate! 

The really funny part of this story is that we thought he said “the Ashley Avenue” seats, but Ashley Avenue is several blocks away, so Brian says “well maybe he said the Ashley River Seats”. Come to find out, while our faces are as big as a billboard up on the jumbo-tron, they were the “Ashley Home Store” seats, a furniture store. Too funny, since Brian’s family owns Sanders Furniture Company. Competition? Not really since they are in a different state. I don't know why, but this really cracked me up!

Along with Tug-O-War and baseball, there was also sumo wrestling...

and human bowling...

Since they upgraded us, we found it hard to leave before the end of the game, not to mention all the beer Brian drank which caused him to believe that he was the only one cheering for “the Daaawgs” as he suddenly became fond of calling them. If it weren’t for the guy yelling “you suck”, Brian may have been considered most obnoxious. Luckily he wasn’t “that guy”.

We had a lot of fun, but unfortunately the obnoxious guy may have been right because we ended up losing to the Greenville Drive 2-5 in the first game, and 0-5 in the second game. Poor daaawgs.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


I just noticed that Peru showed up in my blog stats for the week, so I guess my dad found an internet cafe to catch up on the blog! Hi Dad (if you're reading)! I'm sorry that I missed your phone calls, and I hope the earthquake down there didn't affect your trip?! Looked to be pretty far from Cuzco, but still a 6.8 on the Richter Scale!

In other news, look what just popped up in our yard!

Here is a better photo for scale, with the rest of the flower bed...

I hope these other plants start to bloom soon as well! Maybe they'll be red like some of neighbors similar plants down the street!

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Our blogiversary came and went with no big hoopla, but now that it's our 200th post, I'm feeling somewhat accomplished and sentimental!  

Thanks to Heather from Notes from the Nelsens, who just awarded us with the Versatile Blogger Award! I have definitely never heard of this before, but I am honored! 

Here are the rules for accepting this award according to Heather.

The Rules of accepting the Versatile Blogger Award are:
1. Thank the person who gave you the award and link back to them in your post.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Pass this award along to 15 recently discovered blogs.

But here in lies the problem. Although I follow about 30 blogs, most of them are pretty popular, some of them even make a living blogging. Not that this is a bad thing, but they are far from recently discovered! Also, most have to do with home renovation, so that doesn't seem very versatile. Therefore, as honored as I am, I have decided to just go ahead and share with you the blogs that I read on a daily basis and why I read them... there I go, breaking the rules again. So my apologies Heather, if I can't accept the award, but I feel the qualifications are too much for me to handle! 

First up, the seven facts that you may (or may not) want to know about me, in no particular order.
  1. I make my bed EVERY day. And the pillows on the couch must be perfect before I walk out the door in the mornings. Just in case someone stops by? 
  2. I've been to 42 states across America and 11 countries. Can you guess which states I haven't visited?
  3. Bowling is my favorite pastime. And my claim to fame is that I bowled in a league with Big Boi from Outkast, which is the reason for the quote on my laundry room wall that I blogged about here . 
  4. When I am fortunate enough for someone to buy me a gift certificate for a massage or mani/pedi, I save it until the very last minute. Once it's used, it's gone, and thereby I have nothing to look forward to. I don't like for things like that to end. I like to keep those indulgences out there in the distance to savor from afar! Then hopefully by the time I use it, there's another one purchased, and the vicious cycle starts again.
  5. My heart has been broken, but has since healed. I have loved and lost, and loved again, and for this I will be forever grateful. Life is good.
  6. I love live music, but can't play a single instrument. I know I said bowling was my favorite pastime, but going to concerts is a close second. My favorite band of all-time is The Black Crowes, my favorite band currently is probably My Morning Jacket, my favorite singer (and cd that hasn't left my cd player for months) is Jason Isbell, and my favorite local performer is Cary Ann Hearst (and her other half of Shovels and Rope, Michael Trent). 
  7. I was born in South Carolina, moved to Louisiana, back to South Carolina, moved to Italy, back to South Carolina, moved to Georgia, moved to California, and finally moved back to South Carolina. What a crazy pull this state has over me! I've called at least 24 places home in my lifetime. I've had four homes in four years, since living in Charleston! Hopefully we'll stick around for a while in our current house!
Now for the fifteen blogs that I would like to award the Not-So-Versatile-I-Just-Enjoy-Reading Blogger Award. If you are receiving this award from me, it means I love reading your blog and think other people should read it too! I'd also like to encourage my friends out there to write, since it's been such a great release for me (and secretly I'd like to look into your lives)!

Little Glass Box

Hernando House

For sarcastic comedy, these are my faves... 


My apologies that some of the links don't work, I've tried everything. :(
You'll have to type these into your browser: Yellow Brick Home, eighteen25, Unhappy Hipsters, and Catalog Living

So there you have it, my favorite blogs! It only took me all week to write this post! I would like to say that there are lots of other great blogs that I read as well, so how about a montage of them all? One paragraph that tells a story using them all?

Baby Space
is like a Design Sponge for Baby Lifestyles that thrive in the Nest Design Studio. The Sumerel's Stories are Delightfully Lovely with a little Southern Hospitality thrown inand if there are thirtyone things I love, it includes tatertot s& jello
! The Art of Doing Stuff is harder than it looks. Oh how nice it would be for this Centsational Girl to have a Nest of Posies. Can I get a Hoot (Design Co.)?

Glad to finally wrap this one up! I hope you've found at least one blog on here that strikes your fancy! Any others that you'd recommend? You may notice a trend here, mostly home decor! It's hump day, whoop, whoop! 2 more days til the weekend.