Tuesday, December 16, 2014

London 2014, Day #3

I spent much of the day in Notting Hill doing mostly window shopping. There were so many quaint stores with interesting things on display, ranging from clothing to maps to earthenware and much more. It seemed like each shop wanted to entice me with samples of pastries and that, coupled with some year-end sales placed me in paradise. I, of course, also couldn't get enough of all the fine paint color combinations going on around me. I left with so much inspiration for painting my own home. 

This was a very quaint print shop. They didn't allow photography inside, but I did leave there with a purchase that I will take a picture of later. The seller told me it's from 1890. I thought that was pretty old. Later that day we went out to eat with a fellow whose elementary school dated back to 914. I assumed he meant 1914. Nope. Made me feel pretty silly for mentioning earlier that our home was "old" being from the 1960s.

I eventually worked my way to Kensington gardens and this was a nice place to relax and take in nature. Nearby is the Princess Diana Children's Garden, which seemed amazing from what I could see through the gates (large tepees, pirate ships), but they wouldn't let me enter without a child of my own. I do look forward to coming back as a family. 

Monday, December 15, 2014

London 2014

Well, I made it!

It was looking like everything was going to fall apart just before the trip, but I'm glad to say my bout with a "stomach bug" is over and I'm happily posting this from a cozy flat in London, sipping on some lovely tea.

On to the photos from Days #1-2!

St. Paul's Cathedral

We're staying at a quaint flat near St. Paul's church. Every time I pass it I thinking about that scene from Mary Poppins: Feed the birds, tuppence for birds. . . That was then and this is now, though. We're in a "post-jubilee" world and the Queen has certainly left her mark. On our way to find a place to eat I noticed several stations where a symbol of royal crown was displayed with something magical to behold. In the picture above, you'll find a cool upcycle of a ruined cathedral, now with organic plant beds at its base. I love that mix of old, new, and green.

Burrough Market was over-whelming and fantastic at the same time. It normally closes early-ish on Thursdays through Sunday, but during the holiday season it has extended hours/days. It reminded me of the bazaars in Istanbul with its many sellers and products. Lots of sights and smells to take in. While it would have been nice to pick up something from one of the stands, we were so tired from out trip we decided to sit down at a restaurant there called Fish!. Tim got the monkfish; I had the halibut. Both were tasty. 

Celebrating 11 years (with jet-lag)

It was a short train ride to Westminster. For some reason, as soon as I saw Big Ben I began to cry a little. Perhaps I was emotional because my best laid out plans to use the bus system were foiled by re-routing due to construction, I'm a nerd, or as I've stated before, this trip means a lot to me. I'm getting out there and doing things in spite of my disease! (All of the above would be a good guess.)

Ah, Buckin'em. As luck would have it, I showed up just in time to see the changing of the guard. I was told this is kind of a big deal because it only happens once and day and usually the crowds are so large you don't get to peer through the gates unless you've been standing around for hours. Cool.

Her majesty's secret public service! I'm talking about The Queen's Gallery. I had to pay to get in, but the bathrooms there with their fancy soaps and pretty marble sinks just about made it worth it on their own. The current exhibits showcased gold throughout the ages and, separately, the 1860 Prince of Wales Middle East tour in photos. The story of his visit to thank 'Abd al-Qadir was particularly touching and bittersweet as the purpose was to thank him for sheltering Christians during their genocide in Syria. (Why is this stuff still happening?!)

Trafalgar square

I found this neat place on the recommendation of some blogger who I cannot credit at this time. This is Neal's yard. It's a colorful corner in WC2 that celebrates organic eating and green lifestyle. All the healthy shakes, herbal soaps, and vintage clothes were a dream. I definitely want to go back there.

And that's that, for now. The hubby just got back from the office and it's off to get some Turkish food!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Oh yeah, Mudroom

Its name is mud, or utility closet. Take your pick.

Remember when I showed you our ugly mudroom? Yeah, it still looks that way. But hey, I'm grateful to have one, even if it needs a lot of TLC.

By the time I have two kids in school (Homegirl just might start pre-school in the summer), I'd like to have this room remodeled. I already started talking to a contractor. Now I gotta draw up exactly what I'd like to have in this place and work my way down to the details.

General layout

So here is the layout as it could be framed out.

Kids' closet detailed

And this is what the section off to the right could be like.

Seating area detailed

The thing that's going to take a lot of consideration is what to do in the seating area. I've drawn out what I think should work above, but I don't want to have regrets due to a lack of imagination and experience. I don't want to say a couple of years from now, "Dang it, I wish I had left space for the kids' science projects,"  or whatever. I'm not even factoring room for sports equipment because that can go in the attached garage or, let's face it, I highly doubt my kids will be sportos.

Below you'll find the pins to which I keep coming back in order to make an informed decision:


If there's anyone out there with strong opinions on design and who happens to read this blog, please let me know what you think!

Workin' It

On-Call, In-House

File this under "For Documentation" purposes. I snapped a picture of myself at work in our physician office to give an idea of how I look when I'm down to business. For makeup I wear eyeliner, eyeshadow, blush, and concealer if needed. I always wear simple, understated earrings. Nothing dangly. And I try to find tops with a little bit of interest (see the gingham and dots?) that occurs in the tiny V-shaped area that shows through my lab coat. My pants tend to be plain, well-cut black trousers (these are my fave). I almost always wear flats, but I admit to getting a little bold in the shoe department. I'm known to rotate through orange suede, black and metallics, and leopard print flats. The old lady patients love 'em.

And that, is my version of young professional doctor style.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Smart Clothes for Girls

Cute girl clothes with a science theme?

Yep, that's right. Instead of I'd-rather-be-shopping (than doing math) themed clothes or revealing outfits, Lands' End for Sears has gone in the "Let's promote science for young girls" direction, and I couldn't be happier.  I showed my support by purchasing a few tees on the spot last week. There's still plenty of cute genius stuff on the racks for your future scientist to enjoy. I'm spreading the word here and on Facebook because I'd like for this "trend" to continue and, even *gasp* become the norm!

Monday, December 1, 2014

Fashion Rebel?

I've never worn "edgey" clothes before. In high school we had a rule that we must always look "neat, clean, and appropriate," and it just stuck with me. That is until I found this pair of ripped jeans for a killer price. I felt so naughty purchasing them that I asked the cashier if she thought everything would be OK.

So far, planets have not collided. People have not assumed that I'm some punk kid who doesn't rewind her videotapes when she returns them to Blockbuster. . .

(As you can tell, I'm a little behind the times.)

Sunday, November 30, 2014

He Thinks He's a Stud

No, it's not staying in the kitchen.

I could confidently type that post title and know that no one reading this would think I'm talking about Tim. Because, oh man, we all know what a stud he is. I was referring to this banquette seating we scored at Baxton Studio Outlet the other day. It was tagged as $260, which I thought was a very good price to begin with, but then the sales associate told me it was 50% off as part of a holiday sales promotion and oh snap, you know I acted on that. 

Thing is, this banquette seating is intended to go with a very industrial-organic table from CB2 and that nail-head studding is just not going to jive with that. It says Hollywood regency wannabe. Trust me, it does. 

One down, only 383 more to go!

So though it may break a few hearts, and our knuckles in the process, we're removing each nail stud one by one. It's tedious, but for the price it's already worth it.