sneakers are the new flats

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something that’s been happening in the fashion world for a good year or so is the combination of clean sneakers and designer clothing. i’ll be the first to admit that i’m not usually creative enough to think of this on my own, so i’m sure glad someone else did. i cannot stress enough how much i love this trend. i love the look of a beautiful dress with heels, but sometimes mostof the time i don’t have the willpower to torture my feet like that for long periods of time. 

i recently ordered some squeaky clean sneakers from zappos so i could finally utilize this wonderful trend. i thought that i was ordering a beautiful pair of cranberry saucony’s, but i guess i didn’t pay attention to the description because when they arrived, it looked like someone ordered shoes for barney. they were a bright purple with obnoxiously neon green laces. needless to say, those weren’t the ones for me. i’m still on the hunt, and i’ve done lots of research looking for the perfect ones. here are a few of the sneakers i love:

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i’m hoping within the next couple of months i’ll be able to buy one of these pairs and start trying to, in the words of tim gunn, make it work.

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inspiration

i have always enjoyed interior decorating, so when ike and i got married, it was the perfect opportunity for me to enjoy it on somebody else’s dime— and i don’t mean ike’s. we were extremely blessed with generous gifts from all of our friends and family, most of which were gift cards to target. score! ike and i have somewhat similar taste when it comes to decorating, which is a blessing in itself. 

while we were able to purchase pretty much everything we need for the house, there are still plenty of wants on my list. i’m obsessed with target’s home goods because the majority of them are right up my alley + affordable. although we’re focusing on saving as much as we can right now, it hasn’t stopped me from constantly daydreaming about products that would look perfect in our house. here are just a few things on that list. and good news: everything’s under $100!

1. we desperately need a trunk at the foot of our bed, not only for blanket and pillow storage but also to cover up the boxes we shamefully keep underneath. (target)

2. we’re still using our nightstands from our single days, which isn’t terrible except one’s brown and one’s black, and they’re two different heights. this grey one from target would give ike the storage he wants and give me the style i crave. (target)

3. a velvet ottoman with nailhead trim! ahhh. this would be too perfect for our bedroom. we’re seriously lacking in the ottoman game right now. (target)

4. i’m not usually one for wall clocks, but this would work so well with the concrete in our home. and in it’s defense, it doesn’t really give off the wall clock vibe to me. it’s very industrial but chic. (CB2)

5. i love this print because of the colors and the boldness. we’re having trouble finding lamps that fit our needs and budget right now, so this lampshade will have to stay on the shelves. (target)

6. i’ve been crushing hard on this arched floor lamp for about two years now, and it’s $70 price tag has kept me at an arm’s length. although i’m sure i could get years of use out of it, i’m way too frugal to put down that type of money on a lamp. too bad. (target)

7. these golden pig bookends are so ridiculous that they’re perfect. i love when shelving has quirky items that show the owner’s personality, and i think these would do just that. who eats more bacon than me and ike? no one. we need these. (CB2)

8. sunburst mirrors have become to wall art what chevron is to fabric. cliche and overdone, but still awesome. this one is only a little over $30 and has been on backorder for weeks now, which is one of the reasons why it isn’t hanging on my wall. another reason being that it’s hard to pull the trigger on something that i know is a fleeting trend. nevertheless, i still want it. (target)

side note: if anyone needs help spending a target gift card, i’m your woman! or if you just need help spending money, i’m here for you.

bathroom makeover

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take a look at our new and improved bathroom! we worked really hard for months and are so proud of the outcome.

okay, so that was a lie. that bathroom is beautiful and open and bright and lovely, but it’s not mine. until ike and i can build/renovate our dream house, i will just daydream about it. since i gave y’all a peek at the major makeover we gave our bedroom, i figured i’d let you in on the improvements in the bathroom as well. we painted it the same weekend we painted the bedroom, and it’s actually only a shade lighter than the bedroom color. we wanted them to flow well, and since the bathroom and hallway have no natural light, we needed to make sure the paint color didn’t darken the already starved-for-light room. here’s a look at what the bathroom looked like before i took a paintbrush (and trash can) to it (please excuse the terrible quality):

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the walls were probably white at one point in time, but by the time we got to them, they were somewhere between a dirty white and dingy yellow. 

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you can see the mirror i later painted in this shot. it was such a dark wood that the bathroom felt even tinier. 

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this is before i got rid of the stack of magazines, dried soap on the sink, the sink stains, and you can even see a glimpse of the carpet. carpet in a bathroom, you ask? it was the ’80s..

we painted the bathroom at the end of last summer, and i removed the framed picture and towel bars. as we began receiving wedding presents, i added the shower curtain and bath rug. it wasn’t until a few weeks ago that the dreaded carpet was finally removed! i can’t tell you how excited i was to be done with the over 25-year-old carpet, even if it means that the concrete underneath freezes my toes off in the morning. the concrete isn’t in the best shape, but anything beats having wet carpet after a shower.

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as you can see in the after shot, it’s improved a ton. the shower curtain is from the nate berkus x target line, and the rug is from target as well. my man took the time to hang two towel rods side by side, which makes me so happy because we’re no longer throwing towels over the shower rod— nothing says “i’m sophisticated” like using a towel rod. 

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floor shot! the concrete is stained, but kind of makes for a cool, industrial look. as for the mismatched rugs, we just utilized the grey shag rug from ike’s old bathroom until we purchase a matching one. also, you can see the white door in this photo— it used to be the same peachy pink that everything else in the apartment was. it took three coats of paint to cover, but it made a HUGE difference.

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this is just a wider angle of the bathroom, which shows the toilet, and kind of gives you an idea of the size of the room.

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and finally, the beautiful art above our toilet 🙂 ike’s uncle frank and aunt lee gave us the stenciled burlap for our wedding. it was originally in our bedroom but i decided the bathroom wall needed it more. i like being reminded that i’m now a thurston.

so that’s the bathroom! thanks to wedding presents and gift cards, the only thing we actually paid for in the makeover was the paint. i failed to mention that the ceiling got a fresh coat of paint, but it just went from dirty white to white, so i didn’t feel the need to photograph that transformation. all in all, we probably paid $25 to paint the entire bathroom. $25 well spent, if you ask me. 

reason #1215

y’all may or may not know this, but my all time favorite band is needtobreathe. when their first album “daylight” came out, i remember my good friend sarah (brassarmadillo.wordpress.com) gave me a copy of the CD and i instantly fell in love. i’ve followed them since and have seen them three times: once at the 40 watt in athens, once at the georgia theater in athens, and once at the tabernacle in atlanta. i’m pretty much always on the lookout for any nearby cities that they play because i’m always itching to see them again. i don’t claim to be a music aficionado, but needtobreathe puts on an absolutely incredible show. 

well almost two months ago, i saw that they released tour dates for their new tour, drive all night. i quickly scanned the list for atlanta and saw that they were indeed coming to a city near me. then i saw that they’re playing the fox theater, and my heart sank. i’ve always known the fox to have higher prices than other venues, especially since it’s a way nicer place than most i’ve been to. regardless, being a frugal newlywed, i didn’t even mention the concert to ike because i didn’t want to spend the money. fast forward to super bowl night, and ike pulls out his phone and tells me that he has a surprise. i had no clue what it could be, so when he showed  me his phone with the show information on it, i was amazed. and SO EXCITED. then he tells me that our friend sarah beth and her husband are coming down from nashville to go, and i got even more excited! and then i saw that drew holcomb and the neighbors are opening for them and the excitement grew. 

              

this is just one example of what a thoughtful, sweet, giving husband i have. reason #1215 that ike is the perfect man for me. 

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on our recent trip to thomasville, i saw these in the piles of leftover wedding decorations that my poor mom has to deal with and decided that i should bring them home and put them to use. these letters started off as plain old cardboard letters from hobby lobby, which i spray painted with a metallic paint to give it a chrome look. we hung them behind the bar at the reception and i loved how they turned out. anyways, adding these to our bar cart gave me the drive to finally do a post about the actual bar cart!

back in october, i went thrifting in athens and came across a somewhat beaten up cart for $25. i texted a picture to ike and he quickly agreed that we needed it. i love the look of bar carts because they always look like a party is about to happen! we by no means have a super impressive bar cart, but we love how accessible everything is for us, and also the fact that it’s extra storage in a house that has very little.

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here she is! the cart is still in the same shape as when we first bought it, and it probably won’t receive any TLC until we move into our future home. she’s got some major scratches on the top, and i’d love to give her a fresh coat of paint, but i’ll wait for now. here are a couple more shots:

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up until about a month ago, we didn’t have a very impressive mixer collection, but when the recent kroger marked everything 50% off, we stocked up. we’re not huge liquor drinkers, but we like to have things available when the mood strikes.

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from this angle, you can not only see the top shelf, but also the beautiful scratches… you’re probably wondering what the heck that caterpillar is, and i have to admit, it looks pretty strange in person too. ike’s dad’s girlfriend gave ike that bottle of tequila two christmases ago. apparently it’s a nice tequila, and ike has refused to open it so far. a few other liquors we keep in stock are two gins, a regular and a lime-infused. also, a man’s gotta have his whiskey. ike’s got a couple different kinds including jack daniels and knob creek. we’ve also got the obligatory svedka vodka, even though neither of us really drink vodka-based drinks. 

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detail shots: i grabbed some of the straws we used at the wedding and placed them in a wide-mouthed mason jar, and also put a few candies in a ramekin. this thomasville pine-scented candle from the downtown store firefly has a special place on the cart. it’s one of my favorite things in the house right now.

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and now for the bottom shelf. this shelf is designated for drink mixers, cocktail mixers, margarita salt, and beer. right now, we’ve got a few different margarita mixers, including texas, pomegranate, lime, and light lime (for the calorie conscious, i.e. me). add in multiple tonic waters for ike’s favorite gin and tonics, some ginger ale, seltzer water, a couple of cokes, and multiple kinds of beer and you’ve got a pretty stuffed second shelf. 

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ike and i are lovers of stout beers, and if you need a suggestion for a good one, look no further than bell’s special double cream stout. we had it at sweetgrass dairy shop a few months ago and i couldn’t find it again until valentine’s day, when i gave ike a 6-pack as his present.

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the final part of our cart, which is actually above the cart, is our wine holder. it’s a beautiful wooden holder from crate and barrel that we got as wedding present. it came with two holders, but we haven’t needed the second until now, hence the bottle on top. 

well that’s it! be inspired and go create your own bar cart. it instantly ups your classy points. 

okay, so it’s been over a week since i last posted. please forgive me. when i started this blog, i promised myself (and ike) that i would post often and not allow it to become stagnant. between school, church, and traveling, my week is already pretty dang full. but this past week, ike and i had the privilege of basically nannying five kids. FIVE KIDS. they were 4, 7, 8, 9, and 13. the 13 year old, anna beth, is in ike’s middle school youth group and is one of the most active, hysterical, smart, and sweet girls i’ve known. she’s also loud, rough, and sarcastic, but we love her nonetheless.

you’re probably wondering how on earth we got asked to do this and why on earth we agreed to it… and the answer is: an incredible young couple from church that had the opportunity to finally take a short vacation asked us to, and we couldn’t refuse. we were thrilled to have the opportunity to bless them by allowing them to have their first trip (lasting longer than 24-hours) away in over 7 years. the husband works at chick-fil-a corporate, and every year, corporate does a seminar; this year it happened to be on a cruise ship to the bahamas. talk about a great boss. so starting on saturday, the 9th, and ending valentine’s night around 9pm, we became responsible for 5 other lives. these responsibilities included not only feeding them and keeping them safe, but also packing lunches, taking to and from schools, cleaning the house, refereeing many fights, taking to and from multiple baseball practices, arranging carpools, cleaning up after every meal, doing TONS of laundry, keeping them from pestering scout, keeping scout from chewing on their toys, and the list goes on. during this week, i had my regular tuesday/thursday classes, ike had work all day tuesday and some of wednesday, and he also got a cold. needless to say, we were in over our heads on some days. we put the kids to bed at 8:30, and we were usually in bed by 9, lights out. we were absolutely exhausted by the end of the day, and it felt like we would never have any downtime to actually talk to one another.

don’t get me wrong, we absolutely loved getting to know the kids and i can’t tell you how many times the youngest one cracked us up with his hilarious comments. ike has already proclaimed his wish to adopt the youngest if it were possible. i’m so glad we agreed to help because it opened our eyes to the many ups and downs of parenthood. initially, ike and i had planned to try to start a family in about three years, but now we’re thinking we’ll wait just a little bit longer… 🙂

this post is basically to explain my absence and nothing more. i hope to come back full force this week and make up for lost time!

let’s rewind seven years…

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all the way to february 4, 2006. the best thing to ever happen to thomasville occurred on this day. krunkfest ‘06. i helped a good friend, sarah jones, plan the all day music festival that brought in something like 13 bands and over 600 people. needless to say, it was a huge success, bigger than i ever thought it would be. we booked bands from all around the georgia/florida/alabama area, got a few businesses to sponsor things like the band break room, and put on the best dang festival that area has seen. i’m not biased or anything…

you’re probably wondering why i’m recapping something that happened 7 years ago. well, the band Last Year Portrait got booked for the festival and as fate would have it, all of the guys needed a last minute place to stay, so i offered up my parent’s house (i have the coolest parents). 5 sweaty college-aged boys and 1 girlfriend ended up crashing at the sterling’s. 

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this is the only semi-attractive picture i could find from that time period. august 2006.

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                        and here’s ike, doing what he does best. february 2006.

at this point in time, i’m a fresh-faced barely 15 year old— seriously, i had just turned 15 a week before. i’ve always been mature for my age and acted way older, but nevertheless, i was 15. enter ike, the drummer for LYP, and also the funniest person i had ever met. he and steven, the bass player, were without a doubt the friendliest of the group. the two of them kept me up for hours telling me ridiculous stories, including one about a dinosaur named Bartlebee who had a gimp wing. i was in stitches all night. 

i guess the guys enjoyed their stay, because we kept in touch and they stayed a few more times when they played shows in the area. i always felt the closest to ike because he just has that personality where you feel like you’ve known him for years and you’re best friends. as the years went on, we would see each other a few times a year. he dated a girl in tallahassee, so when he would swing through thomasville we’d hang out. and his best friend married a fellow thomasvillian, so we saw each other a bit more. once i got to college, we ran into each other at UGA games or at shows at the masquerade in atlanta. one night in particular, i was at the dashboard confessional 10-year anniversary show for swiss army romance— i randomly checked facebook during the opening act and saw that steven and tyler powell were also at the masquerade, watching ike play drums for a friend’s band. i texted tyler and he told me to come downstairs, so i left my friends for a few minutes and ran down to see the guys i hadn’t seen in awhile. i hugged both of them, and i distinctly remember steven saying “wait for ike to finish, i know he’ll want to see you.” at this point, we’re both dating other people, so i know steven didn’t mean anything more by it. but i remember thinking, “i wonder if ike ever had a crush on me?” regardless, i stayed around to say hey to ike, and then we all headed upstairs to watch dashboard!

i’m telling this story because today marks 7 years that i’ve known ike thurston. the guy who always made me laugh until my stomach hurt, the guy who was oddly obsessed with his ferret, the guy who i always saw as a cool older friend, the guy who endured the grossest waffle house experience ever with me, the guy who played the drums like no other, and the guy who loved coffee too much. to say that i never had a crush on him would be a lie, but i never thought i would be married to him within a year of dating. although he was a hysterical, friendly, and awesome friend to me for the almost-6 years prior to us dating, he is an even more wonderful, hilarious, caring, self-sacrificing, loving, and sweet husband to me now.

i am so thankful that i married him and get to spend the rest of my life with such a precious partner. i always told him this when we were dating, and it’s even more true today: he makes my life better than i ever hoped or prayed it could be. he awakened something within my heart and soul that no one else could have. he filled holes in my life that i didn’t even know existed, and i’ve never been more convinced that soul mates are real.

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