Wednesday, May 25, 2011

I Dream of Homes: Living Room

       I'm back with another installment and this time I'm featuring the living room. But before I get to that I wanted to share my latest addiction. It goes by the name of Pinterest and it is a major time suck. I'm definitely late on the Pinterest train (I usually catch on to trends about a year late), but I'm oh-so-glad that I've now landed myself there. If you like oogling over images of homes, fashion, jewelry, food, art, crafts, (you get my drift) check it out. It's a great place to bookmark and upload your favorite inspirational photos as well as see whats inspiring your friends and favorite bloggers. Now get on over there and start oogling. 
Things that I've been spotting over there as of late
I'd love to remake this piece of art for our future house
in a palette of our choosing.
Affordable art, yes please.
I'm dying to build a banquette in our future home
AND I'm kind of obsessed with lanterns at the moment.
This photo serves as double inspiration.
Pinterest has fed my love for white paneling and ceiling beams.
And I've spotted lots of inspiration over there for Nolan's
1st Birthday bash in July!
So if you have time to kill, go get yourself set up with 
a pinterest account and find me!
Okay, now back to my living room breakdown. 
      With so much daily life revolving around this space, it's oh-so-important that it offer function and form and reflect your style. Knowing our budget, when it comes to buying a house we probably won't be afforded a home with a living room AND a family room, so we need to find a balance all in one room. 
       I've played around with a design plan for the living room several times. I've toyed with Navy, Grey, and exposed brick, but my final design is something a bit more subdued.  And once I knew which direction I wanted to go, it came together really effortlessly. Above all else, I want our living room to feel comfortable and inviting. I strongly dislike pieces that are so stylish that you're afraid you might ruin them, or they don't offer comfort. We need furniture with style that is liveable too! We like to put our feet up. We spill. We have a yellow lab and a baby (and hopefully more to follow at some point) And yes, sometimes we eat on the couch (yes, sometimes often)! 
So what's my plan. Well, it goes a little something like this.
And now for the breakdown...
1) White wood paneling. I am coo-coo for white paneling. Horizontal or vertical, I love it all. I've been researching the cost of adding paneling to a space and it looks to be an affordable, reasonable, and DIY way to add lots of character and charm. Bring. It. On.

2) Grey, that's the plan! I have a real thing for grey. I'm not sure what it is, but it speaks to me. I even really like the name Grayson for a boy, but Jon has vetoed that (dang it!). I'm always finding ways that I want to use grey (I painted Nolan's Easter basket a light and I gravitate toward clothes that are grey). I like that's its neutral, understated and classic. AND it compliments other colors so well. 

3) So, that leads me to a grey couch. I had flirted with the idea of a navy couch, but I think grey is a much smarter choice because it's more adaptable to room colors and something tells me I would get sick of a navy couch. 

4) Hard wood floors! Yes, I love hardwood and dream of having them throughout our home to add cohesiveness. I wonder if we'll be able to afford them...

5) Yellows and pattern. Yellow and grey are a very current color combo but I like it for more then that. I think yellow is a comfortable color, while being bright and airy.  If we end up living in a cold winter locale, we need as much bright and airy as we can get. And pattern! Did I mention that I have a thing for textiles and print? Well, I definitely hope to incorporate print via curtains, a rug, lampshades, pillows, etc. I also really hope to incorporate a couple of patterned chairs into our living room design. If you get sick of them you can have them recovered for a lot less then replacing a sofa (and, hopefully we can find them second hand to begin with!).

6) Rustic. I love rustic. I would love a coffee table made of reclaimed wood, and oh, maybe reclaimed beams overhead. A a reclaimed mantel? Alright, you get it. 

7)Last but not least, I wanted to mention that beauty of a grey hutch in the background. I LOVE hutches and I can't get enough of them. This grey and white one caught my eye. Sure, it's not in our budget but I'm thinking I may re-create one by utilizing a second hand piece.

Here are some living room spaces that I'm loving.

       I've been trying to come up with a term to define our (or, my) decorating style. I think I've settled on country rustic, with an eclectic touch. As much as I hate that I'm falling into the category of country, I can't help what I like.  One of these days I'll start picking Jon's brain to find out what style he prefers. 
Love from Tahoe!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

10 Month Happenings

It's good to be 10 months old.
You get invited to birthday parties.
And there are ball pits at the party. 
What's better than ball pits?
You have your first proper introduction to grass 
and grass tastes wonderful.
Nolan wasn't the only kiddo there digging in 
on some dirt and grass.
Dad's are good for hitching a ride.
This is one of my favorite 10 month traits of Nolan's...
the sassy point.
On Sunday, the sun was out, 
so we took our 10 month old for a walk to the park.
Jon's legs were happy to see the light of day too.
The snow that I've been complaining about has left 
our lake very nice and full. 
Last year, there
was about 15' more of rock showing.
10 month olds swing.
And like to watch other kids swing.

Swinging with your dad is awesome.

*** You may have noticed that the blog has gotten a little facelift. I've been tweaking. I'm also having problems with the clarity of my pictures on the blog (they look so much clearer in our iphoto program), but I'm working on it. Hints would be appreciated!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Backfire, Amgen Style

       Snow has been recorded in Tahoe every month of the year. We've seen it in May, June  and October (and every other cold month of the year), but not yet in July, August or September. But legend has it, that it happens. Last year it snowed Memorial Day weekend. No big deal.                                           
      The Amgen Tour of California is a cycling race in it's infancy (this is it's 6th year), and follows  the model of the European (and well known Tour de France) races. It has been growing every year, and this year it attracted 19 teams. This is the first year that it's come to Tahoe. Stage 1 was to kick off in South Lake Tahoe (traveling around the lake 1.5 times) and Stage 2 was to kick off in Squaw Valley (leaving the lake and heading down to Sacramento).  Having the Tour come through your town is a huge draw because of the crowds and revenue that it promises. Towns jockey for the chance to host a stage.
       Initially Jon and I were looking forward to hosting some friends at our house and walking down the street to see the tour zoom through Tahoe City. Soon it became apparent that both of us would be working all day, due to the tour. But we were still looking forward to the buzz around town.
       Last week preperations for the race were in it's final stages. I attended meetings, Tahoe City set up bike art and banners, restaurants advertised specials, we were wearing jeans and t-shirts. It was sunny. Friday arrived. Everyone was in their final preparations. Saturday came. Town was definitily a buzz. People were cycling the lake to get in on the action. We took a long walk and saw teams on training rides with their team vehicles trailing them. Town was busy, it was sunny and mild. 
       As forecasted, all of that changed quickly. Saturday evening temperatures cooled and Sunday night (I was up 3 times with Nolan) I awoke to find more and more snow piling up on our porch throughout the night. This is not unexpected for us for May, but I think it was unexpected for Race organizers. 
       On Sunday morning, things were not looking great. I headed to work to prepare for the 7 teams and all of the Tour staff that were to be arriving soon. Throughout the day the weather, and updates on the race grew worse and worse. This is what the view from my office window (don't mind the glare)  looked liked on Sunday morning. Not ideal for a bike race.
We were preparing a parking lot for all of the team vehicles,
and mechanics. I thought that power to the parking lot was 
going to beour biggest issue. When I got to work it was
 very apparent that getting our lot
plowed was going to be the bigger issue
 (this was after 5"+ of snow had been plowed)
      There was a lot of anticipation for the race. The start was delayed, and hours later it was cancelled outright. After the cancellation a lot of cold riders and support staff started to arrive to the resort (I think they had all been standing outside at the starting line for quite a while). 
The parking lot that should have been busy with spectators,
mechanics, and some media was pretty quiet. And white.

Because riders didn't get their exercise in that day,
they set up shop all over the resort to spin.
Even in the snow.
Unfortunately, the snow continued through the night and 
Stage 2, which was set to start in Squaw Valley
was moved down to start in the foothills. 
Talk about a bust.
In the 6 years of this race, a stage had never been cancelled, 
and in Tahoe, two were cancelled. 
The race was expected to bring $3 million in revenue
to the Lake Tahoe Basin.
 Businesses probably lost money.
Tahoe City prepared to have 10,000
people line the street. 
There were an estimated 200 people in town.
It was sad. 
Maybe they'll be back?
I'm tired of talking about it, but in case you're wondering
it's still snowing three days later.
Luckily we have some sunnier things to look forward too soon.
This weekend we're going to a 1st birthday party and
we're gearing up to go camping for Memorial Day weekend. 
I'll take pictures!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Beach Getaway: Part III

       Okay, where were we? The beach is already starting to feel like it was so long ago. We're facing down a few days of snow & rain and Jon has been running around day and night with a lot going on. Naps and relaxing seem just like a distant memory. But, I've got more pictures to share so I'm back with the third and final installment. 
We spent a lot of time in our cute cottage. 
We attempted to wrangle Nolan in his playpen,
but he was on to us. 
And despite the snotty nose below, 
the time off from daycare was great for his health. 
It was refreshing to have a boy who wasn't coughing.
We did lots of reading. 
I dove into a book that had been on my 
"to read" list for quite a while. 
We try to read to Nolan every day. 
He's still of the mind though, 
that books taste better then they look.
One day on our trip, 
we took a stroll through the campground & cow pasture. 
It's a bit of an odd combination,
but the owner of the land established a campground,
and lets his cows graze on the same land.
It makes for some good sight seeing.

Blue was slightly unsure of the whole thing.
For ten months, I've been wanting
to capture a family photo of all of us.
I was pretty determined while we were at the beach.
I think this is the best that we did
(even though Blue looks like he's dreaming
of a nap on a soft bed).
While Nolan napped, we even nabbed one of just us. 
We can look at this when Tahoe is feeling extra dreary.
On our last night, we headed out
for a sunset walk. It was windy
but we were determined.
Jon got the odd urge to grab Blue for a photo.
Man, that dog loves him.
On our final morning, before we drove
away from this cute cottage and the expansive views,
we had to have one more walk on the beach.

You may have noticed that Buzz spends a lot
of time in the carrier. 
It's kind of his happy place.

We're thinking of making it a family tradition to 
get some sand between our toes every Spring.
I'm all about traditions.
This weekend the Amgen Tour of California (It's a cycling race)
is rolling through Tahoe. 
Jon and I will both busy helping in our own ways,
 (as are most locals).
Currently there's a risk that the race will get snowed out,
if it doesn't, I plan to have some photos to share this week!
There's definitely a buzz up here. 
There are LOTS of cyclists out on the roads,
we've seen the teams doing warm up rides on the lake, 
and there are lots of people in town. 
Crossing our fingers that this thing works out. 
More soon!