Life at The 236

Silence

So, I had a baby.

And, all things went quiet on the blog.

Actually, things went quiet well before then as I patiently awaited to arrival of our sweet baby girl. She was late — 10 days to be exact — so, I can’t really say that I waited patiently….but, man, was she ever worth it!

EV (as she will be known on here — pronounced “Eee-Vee”) was born on April 3, 2013, at 8lb 14oz. Blue eyes. Blonde hair. Full of rolls. Amazing.

Transitioning into motherhood has been rewarding, scary, tiresome, exciting…I’ve experienced the highest of the highs and the lowest of the lows in a few short months. But, I’m sure most new moms would tell you the same. Despite the rollercoaster of emotions, being a Mama is awesome. I honestly go to bed excited each night just knowing that I get to see EV’s smiling face each morning.

Why a post almost a year later since the last? It’s simple. I want to do something for myself.

As a copywriter by trade, I used to spend hours each day pouring words on the page and that all stopped once my mat leave arrived. I miss writing. I miss the tippity tap of the keyboard. I miss delving deep in my mind for the right words other than the lyrics to Baby Beluga.

So, please pardon any grammatical slip-ups or spelling errors while my fog is lifting. My processor is slow these days and the cursor flashes a lot longer on-screen while I formulate a cohesive thought.

Until next time.

 

And, Baby Makes Three!

It’s been a very long time since I have updated the blog. One minute I am playing in the dirt, getting the garden beds ready for summer and then before you know it, it’s Christmas!

So, what exactly have we been up to since June?

Well, baking a bun in my oven, of course!

Yep…that’s right. Baby makes three! Well, really, four….we have to include our four-legged fur baby, Mason, in the mix!

We are expecting a baby girl and she’s due to arrive late March. To say we are excited is an understatement!

So, there you have it — an official post about my MIA status since the summer.

Up next: starting work on the baby’s room.

Yes, I just referred to it as a “baby’s room” and not “nursery” — a “nursery” sounds like a place for sick babies and we’ll have none of that! :)

May 31, 2008 — Our 4th Wedding Anniversary

On May 31, 2008 — exactly one year to the date of moving into our home — Ted and I stood in front of our families and friends and said “I do.”

It was a glorious day. Everything we had imagined and more.

Today, I thought I would share some photos from our wedding day.

Boston Avenue Wedding Photography | http://www.bostonimages.com/

Boston Avenue Wedding Photography | http://www.bostonimages.com/

Boston Avenue Wedding Photography | http://www.bostonimages.com/

Boston Avenue Wedding Photography | http://www.bostonimages.com/

Boston Avenue Wedding Photography | http://www.bostonimages.com/

Boston Avenue Wedding Photography | http://www.bostonimages.com/

Boston Avenue Wedding Photography | http://www.bostonimages.com/

Boston Avenue Wedding Photography | http://www.bostonimages.com/

Boston Avenue Wedding Photography | http://www.bostonimages.com/

Boston Avenue Wedding Photography | http://www.bostonimages.com/

Boston Avenue Wedding Photography | http://www.bostonimages.com/

Happy fourth anniversary, Ted! xo

All images courtesy of Boston Avenue Wedding Photography.

May 31, 2007 — Our 5th Housiversary

May 31. A big day for Ted and I.

Two major life events occurred on this day exactly one year apart.

May 31, 2007, was the day we said goodbye to Unit 403 — Ted’s one-bedroom plus den fourth floor bachelor pad condo. The special place that housed the very beginnings of our relationship. It was also the day that we took possession of our home — once Ted’s childhood home.

Our first home together.

It was an exciting day full of promise, ideas and major excitement. Oh, the things we had in mind for that house. How far we have come in those five years. It is safe to say that we have touched, changed, re-worked, re-designed and personalized every square inch of our house.

We love it. It’s home.

As if moving into a new home and tackling major renovations wasn’t enough, my days were also filled with planning a wedding.

Our wedding.

More on that tomorrow — our fourth wedding anniversary.

#BlogPodium: Head Full of Ideas, Heart Full of Inspiration

In January, I had the pleasure of attending BlogPodium’s first event called Blogs & Media.

That event….wow! It kicked me right out of my comfort zone (in a really great way!) and connected me with some fabulous, like-minded folks. That single day made a huge impact on me. It filled up my inspiration tank!

When early bird tickets were available for the spring talk, called The Business of Blogging, I jumped at the chance and bought a ticket. This was a talk I was not going to miss!

Unlike my first BlogPodium experience, I wasn’t nervous this time around. I was excited! I was pumped! I knew I would get to see some familiar faces and meet some new ones — I was especially excited to put some more faces to twitter handles names. With a stack of business cards in hand and my iPad to take as many notes as possible, I hit the road to Toronto!

via

As expected, the day was phenomenal. I walked away with a head full of ideas and a heart full of inspiration — but, I have to say that the one thing that stuck with me most was how important it is for me to write consistently. To blog more often. To keep honing this amazingly rewarding craft.

Even if I don’t feel like I have it in me…

Even if I my day job as a copywriter has sucked all the words out of me

Another big take away for me was the importance of goal setting. How can I be a better blogger/writer if I don’t set goals and aim to achieve them? I can’t. So, over the next few weeks, I’ll be looking inward and setting some goals for myself and this blog. Lord nows I have a long list of updates to write about….*cough cough* bathroom renovation *cough*…

Many thanks to Jennifer Flores from Rambling Renovators and Lindsay Stephenson from Little House Blog for putting together another fabulous event! To Nicole Bache from Making It Lovely  and the BlogPodium panel — thank you for generously sharing your expert knowledge! And, last but not least, thank you to all of the sponsor brands and vendors — it was fabulous to interact with you!

To my fellow bloggers — it was a slice! See you at the next talk in the fall.

I’m alive. Promise.

Contrary to popular belief, I haven’t fallen off the face of the blog-earth….or Twitterverse.

Things are still chugging along at The 236. Think about it — will the projects ever end? NEVER! We love a good project.

But, lately my mojo to write about said projects has been MIA. I still owe a bathroom reveal post. Just trust me when I say that it’s lovely, magnificently functional and beautiful. I will share the final reveal soon. Promise.

So what exactly has distracted me from blogging?

Well, lots of things. Mainly, I blame Spring — my favourite season. Being chained to a desk and laptop every day at work makes me want to be outside. All. The. Time. We’ve been…

Hiking.

Tuning bikes.

Decorating for Spring.

Hanging at the park.

Watching Mad Men. Sunday’s episode had me almost jumping off the couch!

Cooking delicious food.

Satiating my Pyrex addiction.

Fabric shopping.

Sewing — and lots of it.

And, more hiking with Mason, of course.

Life is really awesome right now.

Behind the Lens: An Instagram Weekend

Another fabulous weekend has come to an end. Sigh. What a great weekend it was!

First, it started with a trip to Ikea for some bathroom accessories. Ted spotted a tissue box cover — I think we both did a happy dance when he found it. Do you realize how impossible it has been to find a rectangular tissue box cover? Apparently, the rest of the world either: a) doesn’t use tissue box covers, or b) uses tissue in square boxes. I know. Totally sad. This is our idea of a fun Friday night…

But, it didn’t end there. My iPhone 3GS has been dying a slow death for the past few months. I was hoping that it would live long enough until the launch of the iPhone 5, but no such luck. It was time to upgrade.

I’m loving the iPhone 4S…all 32-delicious-GB of it. Ted has caught me more than once having an in-depth convo with Siri. I put my iPhone 3GS to rest on Saturday. It served me well for almost 4 years.

*Sniff*

We also shuffled off to Buffalo on Saturday to tackle a long list of errands, like returning some bathroom items to Home Depot, and visiting our favourite stores, like Target, Marshall’s, TJ Maxx, etc. Ahh, and of course, mail — I had some glorious prezzies (to me, from me) waiting at our U.S. mail box.

If you live in Southern Ontario, you know about the crazy wind storm that started Saturday morning. Almost 100 km/h winds! Driving to Buffalo was interesting — especially the drive over the Skyway bridges. The clouds above us were moving fast and our little Mini was shaking with every gust of wind.

By the time we arrived to the Rainbow Bridge, the clouds over The Falls were intense! Here a snap without using any filters — insane!

All-in-all, our trip to Buffalo was a success. No big purchases to report, besides many, many, many boxes of cereal (why is cereal so expensive at home?!)

Sunday was supposed to be my day of productivity — you know, the day where I finish all of the finishing touches on the bathroom, like hem the extra long shower curtain, purchase and hang some shelving, install that dreaded soap dispenser (once and for all!), hang some wall decor and photograph the bathroom in daylight.

Did any of that get done? Sorta. I’ll be sure to share a proper update with you this week.

But, rather than opting for productivity, we opted for a morning walk with Mason.

We live near the 14 km mark of the Burlington Chilly Half Marathon. Ted, Mason and I bundled up to watch the runners and cheer them on. When we arrived, there were no runners to be seen — the course was empty.

However, after a few minutes, the runners started trickling in. These two men were like machines!

Then, a herd of runners started coming. And, it didn’t end. Hundred and hundred of runners pounding the pavement in our lil ol’ neighbourhood.

One guy (known as “The Joggler”) was even running the half marathon while juggling and wearing a video camera on his hat!

Another guy was dressed up as a chili pepper!

It was a great way to spend a Sunday morning. I can’t lie — I was kind of inspired by the runners. I think it’s time I lace up my running shoes again.

How did you enjoy your weekend? Were you productive? Or, did you opt for fun like us? I’ll need to scrounge up some time one or two evenings this week so I can finally finish the bathroom project. I’m ready for it to be done.

Behind the Lens: An Instagram Weekend

After a hellish work week with impending deadlines and not enough hours in each day to complete all of the copywriting assignments crossing my desk, I was ready for a restful weekend up north at a friend’s chalet.

Prior to hitting the road, I indulged in a little retail therapy to compensate for my exhaustive work week.

I picked up four Denby Truffle mugs to add to our growing collection of pieces that we started as a newly married couple almost four years ago. Growing up, my parents had the Denby Gypsy collection and, ever since then, I am extremely nostalgic about Denby stoneware. My Dad eventually passed the collection on to my aunt, but I kept my Mom’s favourite mug, which I drink my weekend coffee in. I snagged these Denby Truffle mugs at my local HomeSense for a whooping $7.99. I might go back and pick up a few more, since they normally retail for $45 a pop.

After some retail therapy, I got to work in the bathroom and started styling the space for its upcoming reveal. On Valentine’s Day, Ted surprised me with a gorgeous bouquet of bright and cheerful flowers (which I will take any day over roses), but after a week and a half, they were looking tired. Rather than relegate them to the green bin, I re-arranged the flowers in a small, rounded vase and placed them on the bathroom vanity. An unconventional room to keep fresh flowers, but I’m not one to always follow convention.

On my same trip to HomeSense, I picked up some 100% Egyptian cotton towels and this brushed nickel hand towel valet. Retail therapy never looked so good!

Then it was time to hit the road for my weekend of relaxation. And, treacherous roads. I will admit that it was a white-knuckler of a drive up on ice-covered roads with blowing snow.

Thankfully, I arrived at my destination safely and awoke to this wintery scene in the morning.

The rest of the weekend was blissfully relaxing with rounds upon rounds of Catan…

Walks in the brisk wind and sunshine…

And, endless cups of coffee and my Kobo.

I feel refreshed and recharged for another hectic week. 

Love is in the Air: Liebster Blog <3

Awww, shucks. A few weeks ago, April from Money Pit Love awarded my ‘lil ol’ blog with the Liebster Award! Thanks April — such a sweet honour to be included alongside other amazing blogs that I read every day. I’ve been meaning to write this post for awhile now, but finishing the bathroom reno and recovering from my fourth illness (since December!) took precedence.
The Goods
The Liebster is awarded by bloggers to other newer bloggers, who have fewer than 200 followers, to spread the word and help newbie bloggers gain wider recognition. The award comes with four conditions that each recipient must satisfy when accepting:
  1. Choose five up-and-coming blogs (with fewer than 200 followers) to award the Liebster to.
  2. Show your thanks to the blogger who gave you the award by linking back to them.
  3. Post the award on your blog. List the bloggers you are giving the award to with links to their sites. Leave comments on their blogs so they know about the award.
  4. Share five random facts about yourself.

April’s five random facts had me laughing out loud. Seriously, this girl is funny (and slightly twisted — but in a good way!) April and I had the pleasure of meeting (in real life) at BlogPodium and, man, I had a blast getting to know her! If you are looking for a giggle, you can read her five random facts here.

Five Random Facts About Me
ONE: My happy place is Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Ted and I have been lucky enough to travel there the past two years and we love it. As much as I would like to explore other parts of the world, I’d be happy to return to HHI time and time again. It’s such a lush, laid-back place with beautiful homes, beachy decor, endless bike paths and the ocean. Here are some snaps from our most recent visit in September 2011…

Massive beach front homes

Lush, winding bike paths leading to the beach

Gorgeous sunsets each and every night

TWO:
I’m pretty much obsessed with the colour combination of navy blue and orange. Our living/dining room decor has stumped me from day one (I’ve already painted the space twice in two years), but every time I see a room with hits of orange and blue, my heart skips a beat. I especially love the classic appeal of navy broken up with bright punches of orange. Once we finally tie up the bathroom renovation, my next task will be sourcing fabrics for the living room. My initial idea was to sew my own curtains and pillows, but lately, I’ve been lusting over these pre-made pillows…

[Source: WillaSkyeHome]

THREE:
As a copywriter by trade, I spend my working hours in front of a computer writing for a variety of clients in varying sectors (from automotive to consumer packaged goods) and this, as you can imagine, eats up a lot of my daily inspiration and energy. After a long day of writing, I struggle with finding time to blog — I feel like I have no words left in me at the end of the day. However, writing outside of work hours has helped me rediscover my passion for writing, editing and social media — something that I lost over the last eight or nine years by focusing specifically on my career. I hope my future includes more time writing about my passions, such as DIY, design and life in general, and less time writing about someone else’s passions. Ahem, “Universe”, are you listening? This is me putting that out to you!

FOUR:
Contrary to popular belief, I despise painting. Like really, really despise. Having said that, I do enjoy the thrill of a freshly painted space. It’s such an easy, affordable way to change the look of a room. So, I guess painting is more of a love/hate relationship. Thankfully, I managed to finish painting the bathroom over Family Day weekend, so I don’t see any painting in my foreseeable future! Yes, I have taken paint to every. part. of. our. house. Maybe that is why I am so sick of painting?! Likely.

FIVE:
If you follow me on Pinterest, you will notice that I pin quite a lot. I love to troll the ‘net for inspiring interiors, yummy recipes, crafty DIY products and other cool things. I also like to pin my own projects from this blog to help generate some traffic — and, boy, does it ever. Even though I am a “pinner”, I rarely ever peruse the actual Pinterest website. Why? I find it very aggravating when “pinners” don’t pin back to the original source, or the original blog posting. Nothing like finding a great DIY tutorial on Pinterest, only to click on the image and be taken to a blog homepage and not the tutorial. Frustrating, with a capital F! For me, I treat Pinterest as my very own virtual corkboard and that’s it.

So, there you have it — five things about moi! Thanks again April for the kudos! I’m now passing on some Liebster Blog Award lovin’ over to some of my favourite bloggers:

Martina from Adventures in Building Beauty

Erin from The Stucco Bungalow

Michelle from Sweet Suite 10

Nette from This Dusty House

Sarah from ReDesigning Sarah

Top Post of 2011: Jewellery Storage

With 2011 drawing to a close on Saturday, I thought it would be neat to look back and reflect on the most popular post of the year at The 236.

When I looked back into my stats, the clear winner was my Operation: Jewellery Storage post (with close to 1,000 hits — small peanuts to some, but this blows my mind!) back in August.

I have to admit that this project was one of my favourites of the year mainly because I get to use and admire this piece every day. It makes getting ready in the morning so much easier — I can easily see all my jewellery within a quick glance and pick what I want to wear in mere seconds.

Plus, the organizer holds so much! Since installing it, I have filled almost every tack with either a necklace, bracelet or set of earrings. Love!

This project is also a great gift. In fact, I made an even larger organizer for my best friend as a house warming gift for her large walk-in closet. A much appreciated gift for someone who has so. much. jewellery. Jealous!

2011 has been a great year for The 236 — in fact, this year was a first for The 236 and for myself as a blogger. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting other great bloggers with similar interests as me through this wonderful platform and finally found an outlet for my crazy projects and creative inspirations.

I have high hopes for 2012 for myself as a blogger — and, of course, for The 236. In fact, I’m going to my first blogger conference called BlogPodium in Toronto on January 27, 2012, at the Interior Design Show. If you are going too, please let me know — I’d love to meet up with fellow bloggers!

Here’s to a wonderful 2012 ahead for all! Happy New Year from The 236 and thanks for stopping by.

Linking up with…
Southern Hospitality
Sew Woodsy
Home Stories A to Z
Savvy Southern Style
The Stuff of Success
Making Lemonade
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