It's official! We went pending for our new house here in Atlanta! Now we have to schedule the inspection and appraisal all that jazz. It's like that point in labor where you finally know that you're actually in real labor and that it's not a false alarm. You just want everything to go quickly, be as painless as possible, and to turn out okay.
In the meantime, let's talk about this kitchen. We've got some work to do to pretty up this baby:
Countertop and backsplash and cabinets stay, but we can change out the paint and hardware and lighting. I'm all ears, you decor lovers.
Near the very top of my priority list before we moved was professional photos of my family in Austin. Amy, the monumental talent behind Pinwheel Portrait, shot our family a while back, shortly before Lucy was born. They were great, but before I left Austin, I needed a new family portrait featuring all three of my kiddos in the city in which they were born.
Amy's images are just dreamy and Butler Park provided the perfect backdrop:
I will treasure these forever, and I can't wait to display these in our new home. See more from our session on the Pinwheel Portrait blog here.
EATING / Ugh, you guys. I miss Pluckers. I tried Taco Mac tonight (oddly, they're known for their wings and not their tacos). Food was decent. Beer selection was excellent. Service was the pits. I'd like to try T.Mac one more time in the chance that our server was new or high or something because if ever there were a food-centered priority since moving here, finding a family-friendly wing place is it!
READING / After buying (and disliking) nearly every decor magazine that Target had to offer, I've found myself referring to and dog-earring only two: Domino and HGTV Magazine (thanks for the recommendation, Kelsey!).
HOME DREAMING / We've come to a verbal agreement regarding a house! But I don't want to get my hopes up until we've signed. It's like that time in middle school that this guy Drew said he was going to ask me for a slow dance at the school dance, but he never did. Saying you're going to do something is not at all the same as actually doing something. We hope to be under contract officially by Monday!
DECORATING / I've spent way too much time on Pinterest this week thinking about paint colors. Is gray the new builder's beige? I'm using three shades of gray in various parts of my house: Gray Owl for the breakfast nook, San Antonio Gray for my bedroom, and (just) Gray for my bathroom cabinets. All three are by Benjamin Moore, who Britt swears makes the best grays. Why am I picking paint colors for a house I don't even own yet?!?!?!?!
WEARING / I can tell already that my Imogen + Willie jeans will be my go-to jeans this winter. Perfection.
BLOG LOVING / Who are the blogs that you've been reading for years and years now? I've been reading Jen Loves Kev and Orchid Grey since 2009, and we've met a few times both in Texas and in Boston: they've stayed at our house, our husbands have hung out, we met for a day trip once. I adore these girls and truly consider them buddies. Along with Punky and Melissa, they're always willing to listen to my crazy schemes. I hope that by being on their side of the country that I can go up the coast so I can see them more than once per year.
CELEBRATING / Jude and Caroline are turning 4 and 2 in two and a half weeks! Can you believe it? I'll have to come up with something special for them to do for their first birthdays in Atlanta. It will be weird not celebrating the October birthday extravaganza with our friends the Oakes!
LOL'ING / This kid got his senior picture taken with his cat and preemptively got the entire internet to sign a petition so the photo could be in his high school yearbook. My senior photo is not as awesome, but I, too, got my senior photo taken with my cat. I have no idea why I didn't rally the internet behind me to have my portrait + cat published in the yearbook. Oh, yeah. Maybe because in 1998, the only things going viral online were hotmail chain letters. And also, my photo is lacking lasers. But did he also get a portrait taken with a portion of his Coca-Cola bear collection? Didn't think so.
How can I properly express how excited I am without typing this post in ALL CAPS ITALICS BOLD WITH LOTS OF EXCLAMATION POINTS?!!!!!
There's going to be clothing and home goods in addition to their shoes! There are my favorites:
There's stuff for women, men, children, and homes-- so really, something for everyone. Scroll through to see the entire collection:
More info from the man Blake Mycoski himself:
Best of all, the clothing gives one week of meals to a person in need through FeedingAmerica.org. The hoodies and cold weather accessories give one blanket to a person in need through RedCross.org. And as always, the shoes give a pair of shoes to a child in need through TOMS.com.
Take a peek at the whole collection here right now and start making your Christmas gift lists and set an alarm for November 16. I have a feeling this is going to sell out in record time. Would it be weird to camp out for a sweater?
images courtesy of the TOMS for Target Holiday Lookbook #TOMSforTarget
Food trucks! A 4:1 human to dog ratio! Live music! You guys, a little sliver of Austin is here in suburban Atlanta. There were even craft beers and BBQ plates to be had. The only things that were different? 1- It was not one billion degrees outside nor was it humid, and 2- there wasn't a single hipster or beard in sight.
Last night, at the suggestion of my mother-in-law, our family had an enjoyable dinner at the weekly Alpharetta Food Truck Alley. The reality of the finality of us moving here is starting to sink in (this isn't just a visit), and I'm really missing Austin, but last night's trip to the food trucks was a sweet reprieve from all that emotional yuck. As I watched Jude and Caroline, with their faces sticky from popsicles bought from a street vendor, dance on the mulch while local darling Kurt Scobie played nearby, I took a moment to look at the smiling faces all around, and -- there -- I felt it. A whisper across my skin and into my ear, "New memories will be made here. You're going to be okay."
1 / Totally digging my new jeans from Imogen + Willie, a brand I only recently learned about via Zady. They're made in Nashville, and they fit like a dream. I got these on mega mega sale via Shopbop (they're usually $295, but I nabbed the dark wash for $89). I love that this particular style is called the Lucy.
3 / Look! Chris found smoked meats, everybody!
4 / I had the coconut fried chicken from Ibiza Bites. The not-at-all dead body Paul Qui is going to roll over in his future grave when I say this, but fo' real: my dinner tonight was easily the best food I've ever had anywhere ever out of a food truck. And y'all, I lived in Austin for eight years and I do SXSW every year. I've eaten from a lot of food trucks.
5 / A kid after my own heart. He opted for the chocolate sea salt option from King of Pops.
6 / "Is this Texas, mom?" // "No, honey, it's not. But I can see why you'd ask that."
See, Austin friends? It's not so bad here.
My other diaper bag bit the dust last year after a run in with our van door. Truth be told, it was way worse for the wear, as the leather was actually pleather and the strap had started losing chunks of "leather" and stitching. Diaper bags should be built to stand up to spit-up, shoe stomps from tiny toddler feet, and daily, heavy use. That one couldn't handle us.
I met Meggan Wood, the owner of Lily Jade, at The Hundred Event, and her sweet, genuine spirit immediately made me feel at ease in a social situation where I knew few other attendees. She radiates warmth and has a delicious curiosity combined with an authentic desire to truly get to know and appreciate every person she meets. She is gracious, loving, and smart.
Meggan listened to my complaints about my previous diaper bag, which I considered an investment piece, and she offered to let this little 'ole blogger review one of her Lily Jade bags. You guys would not even believe how much stuff I have to carry around when I'm out and about with my crew. Lily Jade has probably never met a more grateful reviewer.
I've been hemming and hawing for weeks now over which bag to review because the concept and quality is just so great. Can you help a sister out? I've narrowed it down to these two that can also be worn across the back, because goodness knows I have my hands full already. Do you like the Elizabeth or the Madeline better?
I'm terribly indecisive when given the option between several really great things. I mean, just take a peek at Lily Jade's full inventory here. They're all great!
And just so you know, here on Indiana/Elsewhere, your vote matters. Not only will I choose to review the winning bag, that's the bag that I'll be giving away to one lucky I/E reader. You, me, and Tori! Triplets!
We did it! We put in an offer on the house I mentioned yesterday. Now we wait for the awkward back and forth dance of counter offers and negotiations.
During this waiting time, I'm doing what any other perspective home buyer would do: I'm counting my chickens before they hatch. I.e., I'm combing through an endless stream of Pinterest boards, trying to figure out how to turn the house that we don't even own into a home. Maaaybe I'm jumping the gun, but I just can't stop imagining it because I'm so excited about the possibility. Also insomnia.
When we first walked through the house, I felt a feeling similar to when I first realized I loved Chris. All at once it seemed too good to be true, but yet there it was in my grasp. I saw my future, but this time, I also saw my kids' futures. So, yeah. I'm praying it works out, and I'm up late pinning.
There's a reason why you never saw an Adored Austin home tour until the house was staged and we were 90% moved out. It's because I have no idea what I'm doing when it comes to decorating an interior.
I'm a blogger, dang it, so isn't my home supposed to be photo opp ready at all times? Um, no. Riiiiiight.
I've mentioned that it took me five years to choose paint colors and that I probably never would have had art hung if it weren't for my mother-in-law, who helped hang pictures on one of her visits. Decor just isn't my thing and it's not something I feel particularly passionate about.
But now that I know we have a potential house in our crosshairs, I need to figure out how to furnish it. I bought some decor magazines at Target yesterday, but I didn't really like any of them. Maybe I just don't like decor?
All this to say is that I could use a little help here. Can you recommend any good decor magazines or books or blogs that can help me figure out my own personal style? I feel like everything on Pinterest is an amalgamation of chevron, pallet wood walls, farm house sinks, impossibly white kitchens, chalkboard paint, and mason jar everything. I don't want my house to feel like Pinterest took a dump in it, you know?
But really, who am I kidding. At this point, I'm okay with most home furnishings if they don't have a yogurt stain on them, but surely that can't be my only qualifier! Give me your recommendations, please.