Since we moved into this house almost two years ago I knew I wanted a specific functionality in the office upstairs.I had dreams of cabinets and counters or rainbow murals or so many others. What we ended up doing was even better and honestly way easier for us to manage do it ourselves!
Here is what the room looked like until we changed it - almost two full years and this functioned just fine until Andrew started working from home when the pandemic hit. He took over the desk where my computer is in these pictures, and then I moved to the smaller silver desk on the side wall. I was more than happy to give it up since we are so fortunate to still have this wonderful job throughout this pandemic. The dresser held my vinyl both adhesive and heat transfer plus the bottom drawer held all the sample shirts for my small business. I used the furniture we had to make the office functional and as I said, it was time for a change for both function and happiness!
First thing we needed to do was paint and put up the shelves I wanted. We used MDF board from Lowes and the brackets are from Amazon. Putting up the shelves was QUITE the feat! We got the brackets up on the wall, using the screws included with the brackets (see where this is going yet?) and as we tried to screw the board to the brackets, it came crashing down on our heads and ripped all but one bracket from the wall ouch! BUT we then went to the hardware store and got way better screws and then redid the brackets, and it worked! I pulled out all the trinkets I'd been saving in closets and boxes. My favorite things are the Disney ear hats I procured while working at Disneyland, my Holocrons from Batuu, the unicorn and rainbow lights! I love these shelves so much and Andrew has some things he's going to add to his side to make them a bit more HIM hahaha
We also added RGB lightstrips to the bottom of the shelves to light up the room with fun!!
The next place we needed to go was Ikea. We got Alex drawers (1 & 2) and Ekbacken countertops! The initial colors I was looking for weren't available, but according to the website (and the worker upstairs IN the Ikea) none of the office stuff was in stock in my store. We decided to check the bins downstairs regardless since we had driven so far (Our IKEA is about an hour away from our house so we don't go often). The plan was white drawers and wooden countertops for the desk and once we got downstairs we found white drawers of one of the types I wanted BUT not the others. Eventually we found that they had the drawers in both style in the same grey-turquoise color (which isn't even advertised online as an option!) and I was like - let's do this thing! The countertop we initially wanted was also out of stock BUT they had one that looked like white marble which would be perfect against the teal in the room so we grabbed it and I got excited! NOTE: the drawers are not the same size in any way, so if you decide you like this idea, measure everything for your space!!! The wider drawers are much shorter AND not as deep so be ready for that.
We got the drawers put together and after a quick online look at the hardware store for a platform type thing for the shorter wider drawers, we landed on pavers hahaha The original plan was wood but they couldn't cut what we wanted so Andrew found the pavers for .50 a piece and I was like "YEP! Let's get it done!" The drawers came with casters but since we already knew they were going to be short, we didn't want the wheels making our lives harder to find a way to raise them up. The rug is from Home Depot and I thought I had gotten the bigger size so oops - I'll be ordering it soon hahaha then this one will go somewhere else to light up a room!
Next was organizing everything that was already in the room and everything we had taken out. And we had to find homes for the furniture we were no longer using! The desk we decided to give to the girls as an official art station in their play room. This way they have a dedicated space and hopefully one place to keep all the craft crap to vs all over my house hahahaha The silver desk I had been using went to Rory and she was BEYOND thrilled that she now has a grown up desk, she's still not doing homework in her room (I don't think she's quite ready for that step yet) but she journals there and reads her books there when she wants to.
The closet was in desperate need of help. I had just been chucking stuff in there willy nilly, knowing I would "get to it later" and then forget immediately forget about it. So I emptied it, and emptied the dresser that held my sample shirts so I could have them all up and seen! It's going to make my business run so much smoother knowing what samples I have currently, and to actually SEE the colors! I added spacers between the sizes so I can find them easier too. This closet also holds all of my photography equipment and backdrops, our electrical cords/software boxes, gift wrapping supplies, extra backpacks, and my Disneyland backpack. It's a mish mosh of stuff but now I know where everything is!
I have a bit of a sticker problem and I just love them so much! I wanted to have them out and displayed so I could enjoy all the art that these stickers are! To me, they're like pins - little works of art people put lots of work into.
Now for what you've all been waiting for - the grand reveal!
And there it is! Our shared office space and it works really well for both of us now. This office was first only for me when we moved in but with the pandemic, Andrew now gets to share it and have a dedicated space for when/if he continues working from home!
Artwork on the walls from the AMAZINGLY talented artist Christian Wizyakuza
Bookworm Reads 2021 Part 1
Halfway through February and I thought I should recap my books so far this year! My goal is to read 50 new to me books, not counting rereads (currently in a reread of A Court of Thorns and Roses in prep for A Court of Silver Flames coming next week!!). I'm excited to go over some of them in detail with you here! And as always, my IG has the book reviews a lot faster than I will here so you've been warned hahaha
I will link to each book from Amazon as well ;)
Dust by Kara Swanson
Claire knows Peter Pan is just a character in a storybook. He’s also the reason her brother was taken from her so long ago. Now she has a lead on his location; it’s in the one place she doesn’t want to go - London, where the stupid fairy tale takes place.
Peter has to get back to Neverland. He has to fix what he’s broken and the key to getting back is the girl with pixie dust in her veins, the sister of a friend that he is desperate to find.
This story is a wonderful retelling of Peter Pan. It delves into loss, grief, Neverland lore, the Darlings and so much more! I thoroughly enjoyed this book and cannot wait for the sequel, Shadow to come out this summer!
Add Dust (and preorder Shadow) to your shelves if you like stories about faith, trust, and pixie dust.
Children of Blood and Bone & Children of Virtue and Vengeance by Tomi Adeyemi: Zelie and Tzain’s mother was killed in The Raid by the monarchy and all maji live in fear of losing their own lives even with magic gone from Orisha. But Zelie has inherited her mother’s gifts and wants magic back to win the kingdom for her people. Amari has always been kept in the palace to play the perfect princess, but when her beloved Binta is slain in front of her very eyes after being forced to use magic by the king, Amari steals the ancient magical artifact and runs away to find a way to bring magic back to make things right. Inan is the crown prince. He has been taught Duty before Self and that Orisha waits for no one. But when Inan ends up becoming a maji, he has to learn how to control the magic now flowing through his veins before it kills him. These 4 are the key to restoring magic and order to their kingdom, and the gods have set them on quite the incredible journey.
I loved these books! I’ll admit it took a little time to get into the first one but once I was hooked I couldn’t stop reading! This world is rich with the culture inspired by West African tribes and it’s just beautiful. I will warn that there is some physical torture and emotional abuse in these books as well. But I’m eagerly awaiting book 3 whenever it comes out!
Add Children of Blood and Bone & Children of Virtue and Vengeance to your shelves if you like a magical, heartfelt, inspiring, and even sometimes infuriating story!
An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson: Isobel has such a wonderful “Craft” of painting portraits that Fair Folk from the neighboring kingdom come all the time to commission her work. One day Prince Rook of Autumn comes to visit her and though they both try not to, feelings emerge even though it is forbidden for a mortal and a Fair Folk to fall in love. When he leaves with his painting Isobel knows she won’t see him again, only to have Rook storm into her house later when the painting is revealed and she’s committed a cardinal sin: painting human sorrow in his eyes! Together they run before the consequences of both of their actions, and their hearts desires, catch up to them!
This is not a normal fairy tale. These are the Fair Folk of legends and old wives tales. They glamour themselves to look more beautiful and are very haunting, but this book was beautiful. I loved Isobel and Rook and their quippy remarks to each other. I loved the world that Rogerson created in Whimsy and the forest. It was just such a great escape!
Add An Enchantment of Ravens to your shelves if you like a sweeping romance and some mysterious and tricksy Fair Folk!
Fable by Adrienne Young: There are 5 rules in Fable’s life: Keep your knife where you can reach it; Never owe anyone anything; Nothing is free; Always construct a lie from a truth; Never, under any circumstances, reveal what or who matters to you. Her father drilled those rules into her and she has always lived up to them. Now as she is finally able to escape the island where he dumped her to prove herself, she searches for him to make him take her on as a member of his crew. Fable is also a very special kind of dredger, she can feel the gems she’s diving for, a lost art she learned from her mother before she sank beneath the waves. As Fable journeys through The Narrows with a rag tag crew, will she ab able to stick to her rules or will she have to learn to trust?
This was a very fun and quick read. Fable is fiery and the cast of supporting characters is quite entertaining. I had many many friends recommend this book and I’m glad I listened! A sequel is rumored to be working on for Fable’s story and I sure hope it comes soon! I need to know more about her journey!
Add Fable (and preorder Namesake) to your shelves if you like a swashbuckling adventure on the sea!
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V. E. Schwab: Adeline LaRue is a girl in 1700s France dreading the life she’s supposed to live: get married, have babies and forever be stuck in her tiny decrepit town. But when she calls upon the gods for help, one from the dark answers - you never pray to the ones after dark. Now Addie is free to live as she pleases, only no one remembers her. Ever. For 300 years she’s lived this way, a wraith among the human race and when she stumbles into Henry, her world changes with three simple words: “I remember you.”
This was a beautiful story. Addie is a wonderful leading lady and Henry is a great foil to her. Their journey together is heartbreaking and heartwarming at the same time. I adored it and am better for reading it.
Add The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue to your shelves if you like stories about faith, aspirations, bargains, and timeless romance.
For all my 2021 reads I also have them in a list on Amazon since I don't always have time for a review of each one! I will only link to the ones I liked/enjoyed - no duds there!
Ya know I think 2020 may have tried a little too hard to continue its rein of terror dontcha think?? Good grief what a start to the new year! I'm really hoping for smoother waters as the year progresses.
This year we have a few goals as a family, a few house projects we want to get done, and some personal goals of course. I've said it before but it bears repeating that I don't like resolutions. I don't like the pressure that comes with that term to make lofty goals that you may or may not (most likely won't) achieve. Kinda buzzkills the whole thing for me. BUT I am a firm believer in knowing your own limits and setting the goals you know you can manage.
For me, this is going to be a year of figuring out my space in the universe. Rediscovery if you will. I know I want to remember who I was before I got married and became a mother. Those two things are very very important and I would never change them or trade them away BUT I feel like I may have forgotten that I was an individual before all of that. I want to rediscover my passions and joys. I want to find my middle ground.
Finding a middle ground is the hardest part of growing. I feel pulled in a few directions but know in my heart that there's not necessarily always a perfectly right answer. I've had to dismantle a lot of biases and traditions and cultural demands to really get to where I want to be. To find where my soul is truly at peace within myself. I've had to learn that what seemed so black and white when I was younger is so much more complicated and grey than I thought. That I have grown up and have found my own opinions and have had to remold myself to be who I really am. I have a lot more to still do but I'm proud of the progress I've made thus far thanks to friends and some amazing therapists that have made resources available through social media to help us see things more clearly. (Dr Julie Hanks, Hey Tiffany Roe, and CelesteDavis are a few that have helped me immensely)
I want to grow my little side business more. I thoroughly enjoy making shirts and all of the goodness that comes from meeting new people and seeing their happy faces with my products. I want to build a community of friends this year. I have a hard time making friends more often than not to be honest. I am a painfully shy person until I get to know you better and then there's no holding back hahahaha
I want to read more. I also want to read more diverse books and diverse authors. I've made pretty decent headway from nothing but still want more and I love learning different things from the different authors and their stories. My goal is to read 50 books this year and so far I've read 10! Almost 11 but the last one was just boring as heck so I stopped hahaha I plan on doing Book Round Ups when I remember to on here but if you ever want to know what I'm reading, I update my Instagram often and my Goodreads/StoryGraph accounts so you can follow along too!
So for now, here's where my 2021 begins (January was a trial run hahaha) and I hope you all will join me for a year of fun and rediscovery!
Here you will find love, magic, bookworm favorites, Disney tips, and a family on their journey to Happy Ever After!