converting recessed lighting to pendant

One of the many things that drives me nuts about our apartment is the recessed lighting in our dining room and entry. I knew there were conversion kits, but the thought of messing with wires freaked me out, so I've just learned to live with these uglies in our home. BUT, while I was flipping through the Ballard catalog the other day I pretty much jumped for joy when I found out there is an easier way! They sell adapters that you just screw into the recessed lighting! Are these new, or am I just the last person to find out about them?
I'm purchasing the natural linen for our dining room, and if I like it, I'm purchasing a smaller one in seagrass for the entry.


entryway before + after

This weekend I tried to spiffy up our entryway like I had mentioned here. It ended up taking much longer than I expected because the texture on our walls made all of my careful taping useless. The paint just seeped through the (edge-lock guarantee) tape and made horrible jagged lines. I also chose a way-too-small roller. Two lessons learned: never buy a house with textured walls, and buy a bigger roller next time! 
It turned out much more blue than I was expecting, but I think it might be growing on me.
Just in case you don't remember the before...
We used Valspar's Corduroy Black. The bin is from the Container Store, the hooks are from Anthro, the rug is from West Elm, and the picture is from our recent trip to MarfaI got it made into a 16x20 poster at Walgreens and put it into an Ikea frame for less than $30! 


lost lander and blind pilot at the kessler

So many, many things have been going on the past couple of weeks. For starters we saw Blind Pilot on the 14th, and then after about four hours of sleep hopped on a plane to fly to the beach. I was exhausted, but it was totes worth it. We almost didn't go since we had so much to do before vacation, and had seen them a few times before, but man I'm glad we did. This was by far the best concert they've done, and that last song... too good. Anyway, here are some pictures from the show. I'll post vacay pictures soon!

Hanging out pre-show in the super cool Kessler Theatre lounge where we had some delicious roasted jalapeno hummus with naan, and I discovered my love for Ace Cider.
Lost Lander opened, and let's just say I immediately became a fan. We got to meet them after the show, and they were all so nice. They even signed our CD for us!
I had a serious girl crush on the keyboard player, Sarah. If I could snap my fingers and look like someone else, it would totally be her. The hair, the lipstick, her am-ah-zing clothes. Gimme!!
Blind Pilot absolutely killed every single song. It.was.SO.GOOD!!
I wish I had a picture of their last song. They unplugged everything and came out into the audience to play Three Rounds and a Sound acoustically. They asked for everyone to stop taking pictures and recordings and just be present, so we did. It's hard to describe being two feet away from one of your favorite bands playing your favorite song while being surrounded by hundreds of people singing around you. Definitely something I'll always remember.

My summertime song on repeat.

P.S. I'm going to be working on the bloggity blog for the next couple of weeks to try and clean things up around here, so if things look a little funky, just ignore :)


layered rugs

I finally received the rugs in that I talked about here. They came on two separate days, and the jute rug was the first to arrive. After I laid it out I kind of liked the way it looked on its own, and decided I might use the moroccan rug in our bedroom instead.
The next day my moroccan rug arrived and I laid it out just to see what it would look like layered, and decided it's staying in the living room for now. Operation area rug over carpet was a success with no wrinkling or lumps.
My next mission for this room is a new couch. I found this sectional from West Elm that can be changed from right to left (and it's not beige)! So perfect for us since this isn't our permanent home. I made a (crappy) mock-up of what I'm imagining for the room.
Living Room Idea 2
It looks totally busy on here, but the only things that are changing from our current room are the couch, coffee table, and the addition of two wishbone chairs to replace our massive love seat. I'm hoping to be done before the end of summer!


dark entryways

I've recently jumped on the black walls bandwagon. I always thought it seemed that painting a small room a dark color would be counterproductive, but these examples of black and navy blue entryways have definitely changed my mind.
Black board entry

The Everygirl: How to to Style an Entryway
entry way glamour. navy and gold
Navy lacquer wall
dark entry accent wall
This is currently our entryway. It's too small for any furniture, and constantly gets piled up with shoes and bags of stuff to be donated/recycled. It takes no less than a day or two for the piles to reappear after I've cleaned them up! I also can't put a rug in here (I've tried) because the door scrapes the ground and pushes away the rug, AND the walls are textured eliminating the option for any fancy removable wallpaper. This leaves me with very limited options for this sad, sad little space in our home.
Since it's too small to have an entry console, I think I am going to get a large mirror to lean against the wall. It'll be nice to have for a quick check before leaving, and I'm hoping it will keep the piles from forming again!
Large white mirror for entry
I'll also be repainting the entry from this boring beige that covers all of our walls to a high gloss dark navy blue or slate color. I came home with these samples, which I narrowed down to seven.
Blue is a tricky color to pull off correctly (IMO), and I think I'm leaning most towards the bottom color which is closer to slate. I figure it's such a small space it won't be too difficult to repaint when we move out, and it's dark, so they shouldn't be able to tell if I don't paint it back the exact beige color.
I'll keep you posted on the progress!


instagram... the Target edition

This totally happened to me yesterday.
it happens every time...
I went in for packaging tape that costs less than $2, and ended up with a basket full of stuff! Luckily, none of the items in my Target hoard cost more than $10, so there wasn't any major damage done.
 Here are the pink and orange ombré napkins that I saw on my way to the checkout that started the downward sprial. I thought they would be perfect for a baby shower that I'm throwing soon.
Just down the aisle from these lovely napkins I found these.
I've seen (and loved) dip dyed flatware goodness all over the place like herehere and here, but I didn't want to ruin our current flatware, and let's face it, I didn't want to spend time dipping every single piece only to be stuck with a set of flatware that now had to be hand washed. So I freaked when I saw this version yesterday, because it's cute and it's dishwasher safe. I bought up a whole bunch of these cheapies and plan to use them instead of plastic flatware when we have parties. They are way cuter, better for the environment, and I don't need to worry if one gets lost or damaged. I think I'm going to use the pink set for the baby shower, too!
I can't say no to cute gift bags. Ever.
I should have known better than to browse the office supplies section, but I already had a basket full of shizz I didn't need so I figured, what the hell.  Looking into my basket I asked myself, "Do I need a neon green block calendar, polka dotted tape, and pretty file folder labels?" No. Did I still leave with it? Yes. Damn you, Target!
This isn't from Target, but I thought I'd share with you where my other ghost chair is currently living. That is still the sheepskin that was destroyed here, but I've strategically placed a couple of mags on the spot until I buy another one!
Lesson learned.


some pictures + weight loss update

A few pictures from the Fourth of July
 I mean... this face. It kills me.
 Now, for the weight loss update. As of Saturday I was down two pounds and feeling pretty good that I could reach my 2.5 pound goal by Monday. Then, I stepped on the scale Sunday morning to find it jumped 1.5 pounds overnight! I was pretty upset because I've stayed under my calories and worked out 90+ minutes every single stinking day this week. When I weighed in this morning I lost 1/2 pound making a whopping 1 pound loss this week. Charlie is trying to convince me that it's water weight, but I don't really care because it's still weight that I do not want on my body! Anyway, here are a couple of new recipes I tried this week:
Tex-Mex Pasta Salad (recipe below)  
Quinoa Loaf. This was just... meh. I don't particularly care for barbeque sauce, which is why I don't think I liked this very much. I halved the recipe and still have a ton, so it looks like this will be my lunch every day this week!
With my weight gain this week it doesn't look very likely that I'll be able to hit my 10 pound goal by next Monday, but I'm sure going to try! Now, for the pasta salad recipe:

Tex-Mex Pasta Salad 
(found on back of Lucerne Cheddar Jack Cheese pkg.)

1 12-ounce pkg. large shells
3 T. Light mayo (I used 2 T. Veganaise)
1 ½ Cups frozen yellow corn, defrosted
1 ¼ cups Salsa
1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
¼ Cup chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
1 ½ Cheddar Jack Cheese (I omitted this to reduce calories)

Cook pasta according to directions. Drain and let cool. Stir all ingredients together in a large bowl. Serve chilled.

I'm a sucker for pasta salad, so I thought this was pretty good, but next time I make it I will definitely be adding more veggies like red peppers and broccoli.


saarinen tulip table

So, I know I just finished my dining room, but that doesn't stop me from thinking about what I'll do when I have a grown-up house with an actual dining room! I'll for sure be getting a fancy Saarinen Tulip Table. I love this black table with matching tulip chairs.
The (Elusive) Saarinen Tulip Table in Black
Seville Dining Table
Tulip Dining Chair, White/Black

Or, the white marble top with mixed chairs.
Designer Bailey McCarthy Truffleberry Market
mid-century modern love, via apartment therapy
tulip table
Chic dining room design with turquoise walls paint color, bamboo roller shade, Ikea Docksta dining table, West Elm overlapping squares dining chairs and Kelly Wearstler Imperial Trellis wallpaper.
Love the tulip table.
Of course, if you're a girl on a budget like myself you could always get your fill with the popular Ikea Docksta,
DOCKSTA Dining table IKEA Seats 4.
and pair it with these affordable chair options.

Jennifer Dining Chair - Set of 2 from Baxton Studios
Can you imagine this pair of chairs re-upholstered with a hot pink cushion? So good.