Bringing a new member into your household is a learning experience.  It takes time to figure out the routines, the likes, the dislikes, the quirks, and the habits.  It takes time to just figure each other out.

We've had Aurelia for just over a month now and our lives have definitely changed.  I still feel like each day I learn something new about her.  Its been a good experience to expand our "parenting" skills and actually be responsible for another living creature!  

Here is what I've learned so far:

1.  She is a Turkish Van which means she likes to constantly T A L K.  When she goes for a quick stroll through the living room, when you bother her, when she's hungry, when she's happy, when she's mad...you get the idea.  

Our cat growing up was very quiet and only meowed when he'd had enough of our "play time" or when he was chirping at the birds.  I'm still trying to identify all of her meows and what they mean.. just like a new born baby.

2.  I need to be up at exactly 5:00 am (which you know  n e v e r  happens) to feed her.  She's on a strict diet because she is slightly obese (is that mean to talk about your cat like that on the internet?)  and so she is not shy to let me know she is hungry.  

3.  She likes her tummy rubbed, but not that part of her tummy--geeze.  There is an imaginary line she has created and if you cross it you get nipped.  The line seems to change every day.

4.  When she is awake, she likes to check in with me every 5-10 minutes.  She comes and finds me, jumps in my face, meows, and then leaps away. 

5.  She loves us and we love her.  She's started cuddling and sleeping by my side and has recently started sleeping on her back with her legs straight up in the air. classy.  My mom said, "I guess that means she's comfortable!"  

When Bobby leaves for work, he always runs and finds her so he can say good-bye.  It's pretty cute!  


Polka Dots

Something is seriously wrong with me!

TWO crafty blog posts in one week?  I've caught the DIY bug.

I'm sure it won't last long, but I'm taking full advantage of this new found motivation.  This weekend, besides trying my hand at my geometric wreath, I also decided to spruce up our bookshelf in the living room.  I've had the bookshelf for about 6 years and it was part of what I like to call my "Pier 1 dark stage".  Everything I bought back then was dark wood.  And while I still love many of my darker furniture pieces, it is hard to pull off in a tiny condo with limited natural light.  Over the years I've been trying to lighten things up a bit, mostly with accent pieces.  

I have seen many bookcase makeovers but most of them involve painting and I definitely did not want to spend the time or money on that.  So I did the next best thing and bought some scrapbooking paper (fancy people use wallpaper...) and double sided tape and voila! (plus it helped that I actually straightened up my books!)


 kind of embarrassed for posting this mess


I love the polka dots and it really brightens up that corner of the living room.  A few dollars later and a new look!



The other evening when I got home from work I noticed the light from outside turning pink and my kitchen began to take on a rosy glow.  I looked out the window and saw a brilliant sunset.  The clouds were pink.  No, not just pink, but hot pink.  

The color was so familiar to me.  I stood there for a few minutes, watching the clouds change and morph and then it came to me.  

Cinderella's lips.  But not just her normal lip color.  The scene where her and Prince Charming find each other at the ball and begin to dance.  They twirl their way into an empty hall, away from the other guests and bright lights.  Her lips glow a vibrant pink and for some reason I LOVED this scene when I was little.  I would rewind it over again, wanting one day to own lipstick that color.  :)


Frozen with a high of 62

This is the forecast for tomorrow:


I will be excitedly donning my peacoat for the day and picking out my most favorite scarf.  And yes, even though I am cold in 62 degrees, nothing beats stepping outside in the early morning and inhaling a big deep breath of crisp, cold air.


DIY Geometric Wreath

I was feeling pretty crafty this weekend and decided to try my hand at one of my many pinterst pins!

A blog I follow, VintageRevivals, had posted a tutorial on making your own himmeli wreath and I loved the simple, yet complex lines and how it added a nice touch of modern to the space.  As I continue to evolve my own style, I find myself leaning more and more towards clean and modern lines.

All in all, the wreath only cost around $4 and took about 2 hours to make --- I'd say it was definitely worth the try :)  

Supplies needed:

30 gauge floral wire (silver)
black cocktail straws cut to 4 1/2 inches

The finished product looks more like metal than plastic straws!

The wall I hung it on originally had a 3 part frame holding some Colorado postcards I had bought in Boulder before I graduated back in 2006.  While I love the cards, I am not a fan of the frame anymore.  Too contemporary and not the right look.  

 For full instructions visit VintageRevivals


Scenes from the weekend

I'm so thankful that I have one more day to relax and then its back to work on Tuesday.

Here are a few snapshots of the weekend so far.  We're hoping to go lounge by the beach tomorrow, even though its a chilly 65 degrees!

Bobby's daily cuban coffee fix

 A trip to the farmers market with some friends

 A rare sight: socks!  Enjoying the colder weather

My two new rugs:  on sale at good ol' Target

Brilliant blue sky

Mama's little helper.

It's so nice to have someone around now to help me fold the laundry and put clean sheets on the bed!

no shame.
 freckle nose
toe hair.



Here are some photos from yesterday's meeting with the Secretary of the Interior, Sally Jewell.  

My director asked if I would take some photos (ummm..I think he got me confused with my twin sister).  I was nervous because I do not take good photos under so much pressure!  

98% were blurry but here are some that accidentally turned out :)


I'm a Care Bear

UNLESS someone like you
cares a whole awful lot,
nothing is going to get better,
It's not

--Dr. Seuss

I have to say I feel quite rejuvenated after my lovely holiday break.  I've jumped back into work and already the pile is piling high.  And you know what?  I'm happy to be where I am.  I love my work because I care about what I do.  And if I didn't care, maybe no one would and that just wouldn't work for me.  

Today was very exciting.  I got to meet the Secretary of the Interior, Sally Jewell.  She was taking a tour of the Everglades and stopped by the Museum this afternoon along with an entourage of secret service, assistants and aids!  As we briskly walked her through the museum and she was given a tour of some of the collections I thought how lucky we were to show one of the most influential people in the government (especially when it comes to museums) why we care.  

Obviously she won't remember me or my name, but hopefully she will remember our work and the importance of why we do what we do.  

(above: waiting anxiously/avoiding the camera with my co-workers for everyone to arrive!)  


Winter Bliss

I woke this morning to a drizzle and a sea of grey clouds covering the Florida sunshine while my family reported snow and more snow back in Colorado.  I have to admit, its been nice to feel the humidity and warmth on my skin since we've been back from our trip home.  Each night Bobby and I would huddle under the massive pile of quilts on the bed, shivering and trying to remember how to live again in a "normal" winter.  

Everyone laughs and makes fun of us (especially Bobby who grew up in the mountains) for our thin blood and quick adjustment to warmer weather.  

I forgot that the toilette seat is always freezing cold when you sit down and that you have to wear socks 24 hours a day.  I forgot that my lips get chapped and I can drink hot chocolate in the middle of the day.  I forgot that you have to warm up your car at least 5 minutes before getting in and that wearing ballet flats is asking for a slip and fall.  I forgot that my teeth can chatter and my skin can withstand the hottest setting on the shower.  I forgot that when its a high of 45 degrees people will be outside in shorts!

But I also forgot what it felt like to wake up and see a fresh layer of snow on the ground and hear how quiet and hushed the world is.  I forgot that with the right angle of light your backyard becomes a sea of diamonds and the snow can capture little moments with frozen footprints.

On Christmas morning my internal clock was still adjusted to Florida time and I got up at the ungodly hour of 4:45 am.  I snuck upstairs, turned on the Christmas tree lights and stared outside the window for a long time.  As my eyes adjusted to the darkness, I looked out across the snowy fields with the tall shadows of the mountains behind them.  I was thankful to be home, even if I did end up freezing to death.


My sister made this wonderful video today and I wished for just a few minutes I was with them, playing in the glittering, sparkling snow.  But then again, I am secretly glad that when I get chilly I can just turn off my ceiling fan.

Its A New Year

Well, this New Year has started off with not the bang or energy I was anticipating.   An epidemic of the flu and some other hardships within our family has made this last week tougher, but things are looking up on the 4th of January.  

I haven't quite decided how I feel about New Year's Resolutions and their effectiveness but I am feeling motivated about starting this year off on the right foot and looking forward to all 2014 has planned for us.  

Numero Uno:  To take care of myself

This is quite broad, I know, but will include everything to being healthy to plucking my eyebrows.  As I'm sitting here typing this, my hair is matted to my scalp from day 3 of not showering (don't forget I was sick...cough cough) and I've noticed my big toe hairs are growing out of control.  Bring out the tweezers and vitamins because I think 2014 is going to be my year for taking back control of me :)

Numero Dos: To be more Compassionate

I will not make excuses (ahem..South Florida) but my tolerance and compassion has dwindled slightly over the years.  I have become quick to judge and quick to turn my head to those who are in more need than myself.  Some of the greatest gifts I have been given is that of compassion and I will continue to work on opening my heart.


Numero Tres: To be more Selfless

My greatest lesson in this so far has been my first year as being a newlywed.  I continue to work on this daily and I will continue for the next 365 days!

Its been a rocky start to the New Year, but I'm ready to keep on going



Song: The First Noel by W.G. Snuffy Walden