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5.30.2014

White, White, or White?

A few weeks ago Bill and I decided it was time to get the Red Monster painted. We knew we wanted white, but which one? I narrowed it down to the below three - all Benjamin Moore colors.
From left to right we have "Decorators White," "Pure White," and "Simply White" - "D," "P," and "S" respectively. This picture is horrible, but I wanted to give you an idea of what we stared and stared at for ages as we decided. We had the swatches up in two locations, and we looked at them in all the different lights of the day. We quickly eliminated "S" as too yellow. We went back and forth between "D" and "P" for quite awhile. "P" was cooler, but "D" looked the same as "P" most of the time. "D" was also the off the shelf color, so it would be easy to pick up as we could bypass the mixing of colors step at the paint store.

In the end "Pure White" or "P" was the winner. I just really loved the coolness of it, and it consistently looked the same in all the different lights.

After we picked a color it still took us another few weeks to get a paint company lined up. We went back and forth whether we would do this project ourselves or not, and decided on the not. Between finding the time, two story walls, and dealing with two small kids it seemed too much. Not to mention, we ideally wanted the walls, ceiling, trim, and doors painted too, so when the paint quotes came in under what we were expecting we decided to just go for it.

Painting starts on Monday, and we couldn't be more excited to say "buh-bye" to the Red Monster.  It's about time!

What about you guys? How long does it take you to pick a paint color? I've been jumped in too fast and regretted it before, so we wanted to make sure we took our time.

Oh, and this post was not sponsored by Benjamin Moore or anything.  Their color pallet seems to be the most referenced in all the wonderful blogs I read, so we decided to check their colors out for ourselves and weren't disappointed.

5.28.2014

Disney Project - Victory Through Air Power

My quest to watch all the Disney movies in chronological order continues with the 1943 smash hit Victory Through Air Power!!  Wait...what do you mean you never heard of it?
Photo source here.
Yeah, I hadn't either.

It is an actual film that was released, but is more informative than entertaining. Actually, it's really just a big propaganda film. Walt Disney really thought airplanes were key to winning WWII, and he wanted to get the word out. It's based off Alexander P. de Seversky's book by the same name, and the author actually serves as narrator of the movie. The film first goes through the history of aviation in animated form. The second part of the film shows how Germany was able successfully seize power over Europe because they fully utilized their air power when other countries were using outdated methods like trench warfare and battleships - again in animated form. Finally, the last segment shows how we can win the war if we start fully utilizing our own air power - again in animated form complete with a bald eagle defeating a black octopus at the end which I assume is Germany.  Go America!!

The funny thing is that it actually worked. Disney sent the film to Winston Churchill who was so impressed with it that he asked Roosevelt to watch it as well. Crazy, right?

My take? It's an interesting film from a historical perspective, and would be great to show in schools and such when learning about WWII. It's probably not something I'll ever watch again though.

Check out other posts in the Disney Project here.

5.26.2014

Fan Girl - True Blood

I'm pretty excited for the final season of True Blood. It's a bit of a guilty pleasure of mine, and I'm really curious to see how it all wraps up. There's not a whole lot on in the summer that I watch. So, I'll be sad to see it go. It had its ups and downs, but overall I thought it was a fun and entertaining show. If nothing else, it at least brought us Alexander Skarsgard.

What are your favorite shows to watch in summertime?

5.23.2014

Frozen Fans

We are now the proud owners of an official Disney Store Elsa dress.
It was quite an ordeal. We got to the store early on a Saturday, and there was already a line. Once in, we were able to put our name in for a drawing to win not the dress, but the opportunity to purchase the dress. Crazy, huh? Needless to say, our name was called, and we went home with the prized jewel. Have you seen how much these are going for on ebay? I actually think I was happier about the whole thing than she was. She's actually not much of a dress-up girl, but she does love Frozen; so we'll see.

5.21.2014

Book Report - The Fault in our Stars

Yesterday I read John Green's The Fault in Our Stars.  Literally, yesterday, as in read it in one day. It's Young Adult fiction, so I tend to fly through those. Here's what I thought.
It's a pretty descent book if you're looking for a quick summer read.It's about two teenagers who fall in love, and oh yeah, they both have Cancer, so it's pretty sad too. It was nice to read a Young Adult novel that wasn't about vampires or dystopian society. That was a nice change of pace. I really enjoyed the main character, Hazel.  I thought her voice was authentic and refreshing. Augustus, Hazel's love interest, was a bit over-the-top for my tastes, but it worked for the story. There's also an interesting side story as Hazel and Augustus correspond with and track down the reclusive author of Hazel's favorite book.

All in all it's a sweet and sad little book.  If your teenage daughter is reading it you needn't worry.  It's better than a lot of stuff out there right now.  I liked it.

I wanted to read this before the movie came out.  This preview is actually what peaked my interest in the book.  Are you planning on seeing it?


Update:  Saw the movie and thought it was really good. They did right by the book.

5.19.2014

The Pool Is Open!

Madeleine has been wanting to go in the pool so badly; so even though the water is still pretty cold, Bill took her in yesterday. I'm anticipating a lot of swimming this summer.

5.16.2014

My New Jam - Chandelier

I've been a fan of Sia for quite a few years now. Her new single Chandelier is out and the video is amazing! The song is really great too. She has such a powerful voice.

Have a great weekend!

5.14.2014

First Haircut

Well, I didn't wait 3 years like I did for Madeleine (see here), but at 14-months old we decided Seamus was finally due for his first haircut!! We headed back to Cool Cuts 4 Kids, plopped him in a police car with a video to watch, and they got to work. Here are the before and after shots.
He did really great. He was so enthralled by what was going on around him that he didn't even notice anything was happening. I was amazed with how fast the stylist worked too.  

Another first come and gone. My little boy is growing up.  I say his new haircut makes him look at least 18-months old.

5.12.2014

Disney Project - Dumbo & Bambi

The Disney Project continues (as outlined here if you don't know what I'm talking about).  We watched the 1941 and 1942 classics Dumbo and Bambi respectively.  This was a fun little grouping because they are both such cute movies that Madeleine really enjoyed.
Dumbo is just about the sweetest little movie out there.  I loved the unconditional love portrayed between Jumbo and Dumbo (the Baby Mine song might have you in tears).  Then, you also have the whole bullying for his ears story, and how he sticks it to everybody by learning to fly and being all awesome.  Dumbo also has a lot of familiar songs to sing along with too - Pink Elephants on Parade and When I See an Elephant Fly are two of my favorites.
I couldn't tell you the last time I watched Bambi and really payed attention to it.  I'm glad I did this time around because I noticed something I never had before - the music!!  Other than the spoken words of the characters, all the sound in this movie comes from musical instruments.  For example, in the rain scene the drops of rain start as single clarinet notes and when the storm is in full swing you hear cymbal crashes for thunder.  I just thought it was so neat that they didn't use any other sound effect techniques besides instruments.  It just made it that much more sweet.

As far as the story goes, not much actually happens in Bambi. It really just just sort of shows the life of a deer in the woods. He's born, he learns stuff, his mom dies, time passes, he finds a lady deer, there's a fire, and then he has twins. It all works perfectly though.

Both these movies are great for kids, especially young kids.  They're each only an hour long, and I loved that they're not about princesses.  I would actually recommend these two as first Disney movies for your little ones before Snow White or Pinocchio.  They really are such sweet little films.

Both images from Amazon.com

5.09.2014

Color Coded

I had a dinner party last weekend, and laughed that I was able to color coordinate all my colorful Fiestaware plates with my colorful Crate and Barrel napkins (similar here).
It's the little things like this that make me really happy.

5.07.2014

2014 Met Gala Fashion

The Met Gala was held earlier this week in New York, which means more celebrity fashion!! I love the Met Gala because it is not an awards show. It's actually a fund raising event held every year for the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute. It's a great combination of the entertainment and fashion industries, as well as the socialite world as well. Since it's more high fashion than hollywood you get a lot of bold looks that you don't usually see at award shows.  It also has a theme every year which is awesome - it's like prom for fashion enthusiasts. This year's theme was Charles James - Beyond Fashion; which seemed to translate into big poofy ball gowns.

Sarah Jessica Parker
First off, Sarah Jessica Parker in Oscar de la Renta. To me, SJP is the embodiment of the Met Gala's fun with fashion attitude and she always goes big. I didn't love her dress or gloves, but she definitely dressed the theme. I thought her hair and make-up were beautiful though.

Beyoncé
Beyoncé also made an appearance in this beaded, slinky Givenchy. I liked the look - especially the veil and lipstick. It's both classic and risky at the same time. It all worked for me.

Sarah Silverman
An almost unrecognizable Sarah Silverman wore Zac Posen. This is a beautiful dress, and so unexpected to see on the comedian, so I applaud her. My only complaint was the severe hairstyle. I would have loved to see her hair down.

Maggie Q
The Divergent actress, Maggie Q, also wore Zac Posen. I loved this dress too - the color, the texture, the pleating, the sleeves!! She also went with the severe bun, but I think it works better with this dress as her chest and shoulders are covered. So pretty!

Toni Garrn
Next up, model Toni Garrn in Topshop. I had to include at least one model in this post as this is a fashion industry event. I thought Toni's icy blue gown fit the theme perfectly. I loved the neckline and interesting shape of the gown. Great job.

Emmy Rossum
Emmy Rossum wore this yellow, floral, Carolina Herrera gown. You don't see a lot of patterned gowns on a Hollywood red carpet, but you will see it at the Met Gala. This one was my favorite. It was so bright and cherry and I loved her make-up too.

Blake Lively
Blake Lively looked very old Hollywood glamour in this nude Gucci. I loved her hair and accessories. The dress itself was more Hollywood than high fashion, but she still looked fantastic.

AND FINALLY...

Emma Stone
Emma Stone looked pretty in pink in this Thakoon two-piece gown. She had my favorite look of the night. Obviously, not on theme, but who cares. The real theme of the Met Gala every year is that anything goes. It was young and fun and she rocked it. I also loved the braided hair (glad she's back to red), the fresh make-up, and fun accessories. Well done, Emma.

All photos courtesy of here.

5.05.2014

Let's Go To The Movies - Noah

My sister was in town over the weekend, so Bill, her, and I went to see Noah starring Russel Crowe.

Ummm...it wasn't the best. They took a lot of liberties with what is obviously a very well known story, but that wasn't the worst part. It was just so very weird stylistically. They had these weird time-lapsed montages that didn't work for me, and the CGI was pretty bad too.

Honestly, I thought this one was so bad that I wouldn't even recommend just waiting for the DVD. If I were you, I'd just skip it all together.

5.02.2014

Buh-bye Boob Light

I have never been a huge fan of ceiling fans (haha).  Midwest summers are so humid that I was always just about the air conditioner there.  Here 90 degrees with a ceiling fan is quite pleasant.  Seamus' room was the only bedroom that didn't have a ceiling fan, and whenever we played in there it just felt hot. Plus, the light he did have was just a boring old boob shaped light. I knew getting him a ceiling fan before summer was in full swing was a priority.
We headed to Lowe's over the weekend to check our their selection.  I wasn't exactly sure what I was looking for, but I knew I wanted it to be modern and have a flush mount.  Other than that I was pretty open. We ended up picking this one up for $159.
I would say that I'm mostly happy with it.  It's oil rubbed bronze with faux wood blades.  It operates by remote control which is a little weird to get used to. There are two light switches in his room, and if Madeleine's is any indication we should be able to wire it so one switch controls the light and the other switch controls the fan. Right now, one light switch does nothing, and the other turns both the light and the fan on and off. So, to have the light off but fan on for sleeping you need to keep the light switch on, and turn the light off via the remote. Sounds easy enough, but a pain in the butt when we're trying to get to a screaming baby in the middle of the night and can't find the damn remote anywhere to turn the light on. We can mount the remote on the wall, but I don't love that idea either.

Basically, it looks good and operates, just not as efficiently as I was hoping for.  So, with that I have officially started Seamus' room!!  Yay!!

Fan -   $159
Total - $159

What do you thing? It works for now, right?  I really liked this one - doesn't it look like a flying saucer?  I thought it would be so cool for a little boy's room and more mid-century modern than the contemporary one we purchased.  I would have gotten it if it wasn't $299.  Maybe it will go on sale someday.