Friday, December 31, 2010

New Years' Resolution

Let there be more joy and laughter in your living.

~ Eileen Caddy

I've decided not to do an official New Year's resolution this year. Really, there's enough to do based on the 101 Things list on the second page of the blog. So no specific resolution was really necessary. Instead, I'll be looking to have more of what this quote mentions. More time doing the things that make me happy with the people that make me happy. I like that. We could all use more of that, don't you think?

For example, take a look at what happened the day of our first big snowfall in Indy. This is our backyard that morning. Our very own Winter Wonderland.

And I'm not the only one who loves the snow. Don't be surprised if this picture finds it's way onto next year's Christmas card!

That's all you need for a great day. Fresh snow, a giant stick to chase, and a comfy spot for a nap. Lots of joy, and plenty of laughter.

I hope 2011 brings more of both to all of us.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Thanksgiving Mantle

As we express gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.

~ John Fitzgerald Kennedy

This quote was perfect for Thanksgiving, which is right around when I found it. Yup, still getting caught up, and there's more to come! In the meantime, here's what our mantle looked like for Thanksgiving.

Almost everything for the holiday (all the white pieces) came from Z Gallerie. The mirrors are from CB2, and the candle holders are from Costco. Not everything in the house is as fancy as you think. But it sure is fun to think it!

A squash on both ends for balance next to the candle holders. And of course there had to be a place for the little turkey.

My favorite new addition was probably the pheasant. Loved his lines and the curve of his head. Just right for the centerpiece of my Thanksgiving mantle. 

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Completed Goal: Goal 46

Completed Goal: Goal 46 Go to a Purdue football game with the big guy
Date Completed: 11/27/2010

We went to a Purdue football game together, and not just any game, the Old Oaken Bucket game. This game is probably my favorite game of the season. For those of you not familiar with the game, it's the last game of the Purdue football season and it's the always against Indiana University (IU). It's the big rivalry game and the winner gets to put a "P" or an "I" on the chain attached to the bucket, and bragging rights for the rest of the year. Now, I will say, the bucket has significantly more "Ps" on the chain, which I'm sure helps with some added enjoyment for me.

The really fun part about this game- I went to Purdue and the big guy went to IU. Yup, we're a house divided when it comes to college sports. We decided that a friendly wager would be a great idea for the game. No money was involved, it was just for pride. We decided that Loki would wear a collar representing the winning school for a month. We figure the bet can be an annual event, and he can wear the collar for the whole month of December.

It sounded like a great idea at the time.

 Mommy lost the bet. Even Loki looks disappointed. It's like he understands.

I suppose he can have the win, it was his birthday after all. We'll meet on the field again next year. I've got Loki's Purdue collar ready.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Completed Goal: Goal 38

Goal 38: Go antiquing
Completed: 9/4/2010

I know what you're thinking, September was a really long time ago. It's true. I've been totally slacking in getting this post actually written out and posted. We went antiquing at the Noblesville Antique Market. It's three levels with tons of things to sift through. It's right on the town sqaure in downtown Noblesville.

We didn't really have anything in mind when we got there, so we started on the main level and just worked our way through all of the displays. Just as proof, here's a picture of the big guy at one point in the shopping trip. Isn't that the face of a man who loves antiquing? It actually is, we've been several times since that first trip.

We were able to find a few cute things to add to the house. The first being a lovely ash tray for the big guys cigars. It's outside in the picture because it was September, and a beautiful day in our backyard. Well, Loki's backyard, I suppose, if you want to believe the blog title.

The other piece that we were really excited about is the crystal decanter in the picture below. The big guy has decided that a small decanter collection would be a fun thing to have in the house. So we've started one near the bar. It looks great so far. We got one decanter as a gift for our wedding and have added another as an anniversary present. Our little collection is looking good! They're all different shapes and styles so there's a lot of visual interest to the sets.

All in all, our first antiquing trip was a success! We're still looking for more decanters, and I'm always on the lookout for books.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Design Sherpa Conest Entry

A while back, like back in June, I entered a contest with a chance to win a trip to Paris. My entry was chosen as one of the top 100 from the first round. This meant that I had the opportunity to submit another entry as part of the next round. I did, which you can read here. I'm a little disappointed to say that I wasn't chosen to progress to the third/final round of the contest.

But I did get to have my original entry published on the Design Sherpa website. You can read it there. It's pretty fun to see yourself published somewhere other than your own blog. But, I've also included it in this post. It's also fun to go back and take a look at something you've written to see how your perspective has changed. I still love the room in the picture below. I'd love to see our house have this much personality. Though somehow I doubt that turquoise lacquer walls and a gold leaf ceiling are really the big guy's thing.

There are a few things about this room that really stand out for me. I love the luxe feel of everything from the zebra rug on the floor to the turquoise finish on the walls. I tend to gravitate towards pieces that give the room a distinct feeling. I think that inspiring design elicits an emotional response and tells a story. There’s a character that comes together once the room is complete. There’s boldness in the room that comes from the combination of materials and colors. It’s adventurous and really speaks to the person/persons living in the space.

It would have been great to win that 10-day trip to Paris complete with tickets to an international design trade show, really great. But, it looks like it wasn't in the cards. C'est la vie. So now I'll just have to shift the focus of my Parisian daydreams to a different trip. One without the bragging rights of being a contest winner.

Monday, December 20, 2010

I Survived Grad School Finals

I survived my very first set of finals in grad school. Was it easy? Nope. Not easy. Not exactly the way I wanted to spend a collective 32 hours a few weekends ago. That's right- 32 hours. As an undergraduate student, I used to enjoy the occasional take-home test. It meant more time to think through answers and access to course materials and other resources.

As a graduate student in an online program I now look at my take-home tests and quizzes and cringe a bit. They're all take-home, because the entire program is based on me being at home, or in some location other than a traditional classroom. Which means more time to think through answers, because they're significantly more detailed, and access to coursematerials and other resources, because you can't answer the question without them.

But this was only my first round. Both classes happened to be in fairly difficult subjects. Well, difficult for me at least. I highly recommend having some exposure to accounting prior to beginning an MBA program if you've not had any. If your first exposure is at the graduate level, it's tough. Trust me. Overall I'm happy with my grade, I think it's fair, and I think I actually showed some progress throughout the term. But I'm still not going to be a CPA. Like, ever.

The business strategy/economics class however, was much more my cup of tea. Psychology of consumer spending habits? Why, yes please. Analysis of competitor pricing habits to predict responses to new strategies? Don't mind if I do. Formulas to quantify price elasticity and probable return on investment? Uh... can we go back to the psychology stuff? Again, happy with my grade, and I know I showed progress in this one, as evidenced by the A I got on the final. Woo and hoo.

So now, it's time to relax, enjoy some time with friends and family, and celebrate the holidays. Of course, I've got loads of blogging to catch up on. Between the quizzes and tests and papers and team projects, there's been a lot going on around me!