I Can See The Finish Line- Our flooring transformation

Our living room has undergone a pretty nifty transformation this past year, at least it has for me. We started the year with something like this . . .

Then this happened . . .

Water damage from our Water Heater. It took out our floor.

It took out our entertainment center (which was really just 2 painted dressers put together)

And it left us with cement floors for a good number of weeks while we searched for new floors.
You can see from the pictures when we were removing the floors that it was around general conference time. This time around conference we had a whole new set up.

We have a new TV stand that we purchased at the RC Willey's Outlet store for around $400 (Originally it was nearly $900- Yikes).

We are in the process of changing out the hardware to make it look a little more us, and less grandma-ish. (We are putting the bone handles on and switching out the brass.)

We have new floors too! Hurray Hallelujah! Now I can't believe this but I don't have any pictures of the space while we putting in our new purty floors, but I do have this close up shot.

We chose a Mohawk Laminate floor from Budget Floors over in BFE (or North Las Vegas). I did all the research and everything, but even with that I have mixed reviews on this floor.

I love:

1. The way it looks, with the light and dark tones. It really brings together our light and darker toned woods in the room and makes it look cohesive.

2. I loved the price, which was around $2 a square foot (so bad that I can't even remember the exact price anymore).

3. Budget Flooring. They were so easy to work with. We bought the floor mat and the laminate at once for a good price.

What I don't love:

1. Floors quality, Jeff had to relay the floor once (first time it wasn't done right, I wasn't home to supervise). When he took the floor up and re-laid it down the edges and stuff started to peel. There are even some scratches in it already. Our old Pergo was taken from an old house, stored in a garage, and then re-laid in our house and still looked pristine. I'm note sure if that was because of the name brand difference or the age. Older laminate seems to just be better to me, but either way I am totally disappointed with the quality of the floor. I feel like I have to tip toe around it.

2. We had to pick up our own flooring. Budget didn't deliver and it wasn't stored on site. Maybe that is how the flooring is so cheap?

All in all I am pretty stoked with the result still. I am just really glad to have the floor down. It has been down for a few months now, I kept waiting to post this post because we have yet to put in the base boards. We will get to it someday I hope.

With this living room transformation, along with a few changes I made upstairs, I think I can totally cross off "growing up our decor style" off of my 30X30 list. I really need to get cracking on this list! Slowly but surely :)


I Am Grateful

This last Sunday at church (learn more about my church here) one of the speakers related a story from his mission. While on his mission he attended a talk from one of the General Authorities (don't remember which Authority) where they presented a challenge to all the missionary attendees. The challenge was to say a prayer where they only thanked their Heavenly Father for their blessings and didn’t bring up anything else. No wants, needs or desires, just thanks. This is such a nice idea, but the kicker for me was when he said there was a time limit goal involved . . . 30 minutes.

The speaker warned that after the first 5 to 10 minutes that the person praying may begin to stumble and struggle for more blessings to show their gratitude, but if they stuck with it, other things would come to mind and they would be amazed at their many blessings. By taking the time to thank their Heavenly Father the speaker promised that the person praying would feel the Spirit in a new way and have a deeper relationship with their Savior.

(Pic from here)

This is such a great challenge! I am sure I would be stumbling after only a few minutes, but I know that there is so much that I should be thankful for. Being more thankful is something I really could work on. I am not sure if I will take up this challenge in my personal prayers, but thought I would pass it along in case anyone else wants to give it a go too. (Another tool to add to an arsenal with Oprah's gratitude journaling, or a thankful jar.) As a kind of warm up exercise for this kind of "Grateful Challenge" I have made a list of 30 things I am thankful for this Thanksgiving!

1. I get to be married to Jeff!
2. Jeff’s sense of humor. He makes me laugh every day, which didn’t always happen before he was in my life.
3. My sisters.
4. Having such a close relationship with my sisters. They are my best friends and some of the most remarkable ladies I know. I am so lucky to have them in my life.
5. Still having all 4 of my grandparents alive at age 29. Getting to know my Grandparents as an adult has let me learn so much more about them.
6. Which leads me to #5, having the most AWESOME Grandparents ever ! Seriously. I do.
7. My parents are pretty amazing too.
8. My dad gives me the coolest gifts that I never even knew I wanted until he gives them to me.
9. My camera
10. My car, I love the freedom it provides.
11. My phone
12. Living in a time where so much technology is available.
13. Being able to have a hot shower every day! Mmmm. My favorite.
14. Chocolate
15. My church calling in the Young Women. It has really helped me grow.
16. The girls in our Young Women. They make it so easy to love each and every one of them.
17. Living when the Gospel has been restored to the earth.
18. Having a living prophet.
19. Living so close to the Temple.
20. My job
21. My house
22. Hand written notes
23. Pinterest. Yes, it made the list.
24. My one and only pet, Opal the cat.
25. Medical advancements, to help us have babies, save and extend our lives, and ease peoples suffering.
26. Democracy (even if ours isn’t really working right now).
27. Good books
28. Eternal Families
29. Good Health
30. Spending time with my family during the holidays!

Well that was super easy! There is so much to be thankful for. What are you thankful for?

Hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving!


Pinterest Pickings- B is for Buttons

Everyone I know who gets on Pinterest is almost immediately addicted. I am no exception. I like to pin and pin, but sometimes, I also like to make the stuff I pin. My latest Pinterest creation was inspired by this lovely heart button/ pin art done by Rockett St George.

I was immediately smitten when I saw this guy. But at 185 pounds!?!? I think I will pass on purchasing it. I decided to mix it up with a little inspiration from this guy too. A cute little letter made out of buttons. I think something like this would be adorable in a nursery or child's room, but maybe a little to sweet for an adult space.

So with my inspiration in tow I set out to make my own buttony goodness. What I ended up with is this "B" made up of Jeff and I's concert pins and other paraphernalia that we've gotten on vacation and such.(The B is actually for Bame, not Buttons)

To make it I printed out a large bolded "B" on my computer and cut it out. I already had the shadow box so I took out the black velvet backing, laid it down on the floor and centered my "B". I gathered all the pins from around the house and just started pinning, trying to make sure the colors of the pins were dispersed evenly around the "B." The pins keep the paper in place and the paper acts as the outline to follow.

I still have a few empty spots to fill, which will be easy to complete the next time we go to a concert and pick up some pins. I can still see some pieces of white paper peaking in through the cracks but I kind of like the way it looks. If you didn't you could always use a piece of paper the same as your background, or once you have the general idea of the outline figured out just tear out the paper from behind.

I love my little "B". It is still pretty sweet, but with the concert pins it is more like Sweeeeeet! Right now my "B" is living in our office and it makes me smile whenever I pass by the door and see it there. So glad people share their craftiness on Pinterest for all to see!


Endless Summer

I forgot to mention that we went on a vacation in September. It was awesome and I even managed to get a few good shots even though my shutter keeps threatening to break in my camera. Looking back at them now reminds me of summer and those warmer days. So lovely.

Me and hubster went with Mat and Lora (our old roomie before she got married). I was excited when they invited us along.

We stayed near Santa Monica. I can't remember the last time I was there, so it was a nice change up to our normal CA trips.

The only issue with Santa Monica is I guess they had a high number of Sting Rays this past summer because when Jeff went out to swim with us (which, he never swims in the ocean), he was stung by a Sting Ray (of course this would happen when he finally come out to play with me in the water.)

It hurt. He was in a bunch of pain (The EMT/ Lifeguard that was called to the scene - and it was a huge scene - said that a ray's sting hurts worse than a bullet wound). But luckily, once we got back to the hotel, put his foot in an icy cold bath and gave him some IBU Profen, he was in much better shape and was able to enjoy the rest of the vacation.

That night we went to the Angels and Yankees game. It was awesome. The highlights for me were the Air Force Jets that flew by in the beginning of the game, my hot dog, the Angels winning over the Yankees, and the fireworks at the end.

The next day we got up and headed back to Randy's Donuts which we found the day before. Let me tell you if you're in the LA area near the airport, you should stop by. Best donut I've ever had!

After gorging ourselves on some baked goodness we went and saw Hollywood.

We saw the Chinese Theater

Saw the stars feet and hand prints, and stars. In true dork form this is Jeff by the Star Wars crew.

This is sadly the closest we got the the Hollywood sign. Jeff's foot injury took precedence over any hiking adventures we planned to see the sign up close.

And just when we thought our vacation bad luck was over, while we were taking funny pictures like this our car rental was being towed. We had to walk several blocks and pay several hundred dollars to get it out. If we had known we would have stopped the photo shoots and headed back to the car. It was around this time that I worried that our trip may be cursed- ha ha.

Lastly, we went to Seal Beach and just vegged, stopped tempting fate. Jeff skipped the beach for some R & R in the hotel and the BYU game, but I enjoyed my R & R on the beach with Mat and Lora. Maybe Jeff was the bad luck charm because nothing horrible happened at Seal Beach.

No worries, Jeff has since returned to the scene of the crime (the beach) with only minor flash backs. He did not get in the water though. I don't think I'll be able to talk him into that one again.


Jeff turns 29!

My lover turned 29. I can't believe we are getting so old. I still feel like I just graduated college. (Maybe that because Jeff is still in college- ha ha!) Any who, Jeff decided that he is so old that presents don't even excite him anymore. Honestly, the kid didn't want for anything. Not a bad place to be in, but I think also a sign of our increasing age.

Look at this guy- he is just so awesome! He wasn't going to let the opportunity pass him by.

Since he didn't want any presents, he turned his attention to what other people want or need. In the end he decided that he wanted to participate in a Walk for Diabetes that was being held here in Las Vegas on his very birthday. Jeff has had 3 grandparents pass away from Diabetes and a string of other family members as well. We know it is a disease that will continue to effect our lives down the road.

He decided instead of people giving him gifts he would just have them sponsor or sign up to walk on our team for the Diabetes Walk. He is such a giver, all the time. I was so proud of him for making that decision and was totally on board! I signed us up for a team and named it "Birthday Boy" after our little (or rather big) Jeffery.

The next step was to get some supporters and team members signed up! I turned to the ever trusted Power Point program and made up some invites, turned it into a picture and went to Facebook to spread the word.

We planned on going to his Mom and Dads house for some food after the walk, since they live so close to the Springs Preserve, where the walk was being held. It was kind of hard to get people on board and signed up, not the easiest steps to follow on the hosts website, but in the end we had a good little group to walk with us on his Birthday!

To get people psyched for the walk, and show our appreciation for their participation in his unconventional birthday, Jeff and I thought up a couple simple Thank Yous for their participation. For the first one they got these Trail Mix thanks yous when I greeted them on the morning of the walk. The walk was at 8am, so a little food didn't hurt.

The next Thanks was a bandanna that Jeff's cousin screen printed our teams name on. We all wore white, while Jeff got the red one that said "Birthday Boy," since red was the color of the event in general.

Our walk lasted a whole of 10-15 minutes, but it was nice chatting with family along the way and being in a larger group with like minded people.

After the walk we used the Springs Preserve as a backdrop for a little photo shoot. Anywhere I go with my sisters and my camera we have to make time for photo shoots- ha ha. We got some good pictures. There really aren't any words, I'll let you bask in our dorky glory!

After the event festivities we headed back to his parents place for some grub. My camera started acting up at this point, so I don't have many pictures (just the one below), but this is where I had probably one of the BEST burgers of my life. Jeff''s brother Spence makes the best hamburgers!! So good!!!! (We also munched on healthy, low sugar options as well.)

After lunch we hit up a matinee to see Restless, then may or may not have movie hoped over to Real Steele. After that Jeff came home to watch the BYU game. It was a really nice day and Jeff even managed to get a present or two at the end of it all. I got him an hour message and we think with the other loot he got that we may go see Jersey Boys down on the strip. Jeff has wanted to see it for so long, so he is a super happy guy. I love him so much and am glad he had a nice Birthday.


Emily Henderson is AMAZING

I have to admit that I totally have a girl crush on Emily Henderson. I think she has such a wonderful quirky style. I am not totally 200% in love with everything she does, (sometimes we just have different tastes) but her ideas seem to be never ending. I wish I could have just the talent that is stored in one of her pinkies. I'm pretty sure that is all I would need, because she has talent in spades. (The pinkie thing all the sudden sounded kind of creepy to me? Hmm.)

Emily just published a massive gift guide on her blog. It has a ton of awesome stuff in it. If you can't think of what to get someone I would suggest looking here. Or just look here anyways because you can never have too many gift ideas!

If for some reason the issue above doesn't work above visit her blog here.


Window Shopping Wednesday - Feeling NAUTIcal

I don't know why I've really felt like window shopping lately. Okay, who am I kidding, I have really felt like buying a lot of stuff lately but have settled just to window shop. I think it is the changing of the seasons or something that makes me feel like shopping. Or maybe the impending holiday season. At any rate, items with a more nautical flare keep catching my eye. It totally makes me want to sit on the beach while listening to Tennis. (Don't know Tennis? Go here, for some reason I can't embed their video.)


I keep trying to talk Jeff into letting me buy that picture of the ocean (#8). ( We always consult each other before making an art purchase, we have very different taste.) It is of a stormy day off the French coastline. So pretty. I want to add some art work in my downstairs bath and I think something like that would be nifty in a little collection!

You can find these for purchase here: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 & 9