Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Ran-Dumb Thoughts

I cried this morning while watching The Today Show.
An elementary school girl was surprised by her father.
He just arrived home from Afghanistan.
She cried, so I cried.
War tears families apart.
How anyone can support such a machine is beyond me.
There is nothing positive or loving about war.
People argue that God was involved in wars.
So because Jehovah backed his people through victory...
That means Jehovah approves of war?
Jehovah will provide support for anyone lifting up His name.
He protected the Israelites as they were His people.
He assured victory because He made a covenant.
He assured victory because He loved His faithful people.
God is love.
Wars over money, greed, nationalism, etc have nothing to do with God.
I hate war.

I got real tired all of a sudden.
Maybe I'm just more disappointed.
But I'll snap out of it.
I need to get to work.
Go hard.
Get some things done.
Put on a happy face!
The circuit overseer is in town this week!
I look forward to meeting him.
Getting some good spiritual adjustment will be good.
I'm ready to make new spiritual goals.
They're probably going to be the same goals as last year.
I can't totally get the fist together.
The fist are the 5 fingers that sustain my spirituality.
Attending weekly meetings, the ministry.
Prayer, daily Bible reading.
Personal study.
Why the last 3 are so hard for me, I'm not sure.
So once again, I got to get on it.

I have 15 minutes until my first meeting of the day.
I don't even want to count out how many meetings I have today.
That would be overwhelming.
Instead, I'll just take the day 1 minute at a time.
Destiny's Child's "Emotions" is playing.
I miss them as a group.
But that ship is long gone.
We haven't heard/seen Bey yet since she had the baby.
I wonder if she's still just as enamored.
Or are mommy duties getting tiring.
One thing I like about her is her good attitude.
She's always positive.
Chick can be one of the most hated in the game.
But still, she's always straight.
Her outlook on life is inspiring.
Always focus on the blessings right?
Now Boyz II Men "Water Runs Dry" is on.
What's up with all the slow songs?
Pandora had to slip in a commercial of course.
Speaking of commercials, I can't wait for the Superbowl.
We got invited over someone's house from our new congregation.
I already feel loved and included.
That's awesome.
Fantasia's "When I See U"...
I love this song.
"Something now is taking over meeee!"
I still remember when my sis lip sang this song.
"You're so sexy boy!"
She was hilarious.
Why we made each other lip sink songs alludes me at this point...
Sisterly things.
Is it lip sing or lip sinK?
Oh, it's lip sync.
Thanks google.
Alright, I'ma sign out while Chris Brown bangs in my ears.
He always pumps me up.
Come on Chris!

Good day everyone!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

My Manager...

...likes to create work for ourselves. And thus I have the work blues.

I don't know anyone who actually LIKES to be responsible for EVERYTHING. His breed is certainly of another kind. Do you know he told me that I need to create some sort of report to track when it's time for me to pay someone their spot award? Huh? Why would I go on a fishing expedition for someone who should come to ME when they found they have met the requirements for an award? If you are taking steps to qualify for an incentive award, it's only reasonable that you let me know when the award has been approved right? Talking about create-a-report-so-I-can-know-when-someone-wins-an-award... NO! Do you know how long it's going to take me to do that?! Especially considering that none of the tracking mechanisms for awards are currently IN the system! I would have to create the data fields, get the data dumped into the system, test it, and then build reports. Dude is tripping.

I can already feel that I'm going to need to courteously tell him that he's drowning us both. I'm going to have to tell him in some sort of fashion that sales needs to do sales work, I need to do analysis work, and he needs to do marketing work. I'm not managing sales reps' opportunities. That's their job. When he told me that we were going to compute averages and then load them back into the rep's opportunities, that's when I knew he lost it. Why would we take on the job of asking them which opportunities we can load this month's averages into and then do the loading? THEY are responsible for THEIR opportunities. Sure I can give them the averages, but it's up to THEM to decide if they are appropriate or if they have more knowledge than what an average may mean.

He's definitely tripping.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Happy Tuesday!

I've been busy creating my home inspiration board on pinterest. I love this site. Any and every picture that you see and drool over when you're surfing the web for cars, wedding stuff, photography ideas, home decor, etc., you can electronically pin it to a web-based board. Never do you again have to dig into your memory banks to remember where you saw that _______ that you loved so much. It's a genius site!

The feeling that I get from my "For The Home" inspiration board WILL BE spread through the emptiness you see below. When? I'm not quite sure yet. But it's primed and ready for some design!!! The bones of the main floor are looking pretty good though if I must say so myself.

I did go on ahead and order my sofa last week. Yay! I have to wait 6 to 8 weeks for delivery though. Boo. It cost me an arm and a leg (double boo), but I'm thinking this is one of the only huge purchases I need for this room. I hope the sofa gets here before my parents come on the 2/26. Don't you just love it?! Mine is the grey version though. I cannot WAIT until it comes.

I'm thinking about getting the 8' x 10' version of the rug on the floor below to complete the space for a while. After that, I need to take a break and focus my little bit of funds on other things. You feel me?

Oh! Last but not least, here's a snapshot of my jewelry storage solution that hubby and I came up with. It consists of an expandable dish rack and 3 shelves from Ikea. The only thing I'm worried about is what I'm going to do when I expand my earring collection like I've been wanting to. I guess more shelves... I love this setup though. It's really working for me.

Enjoy the week!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Talking It Out

I've been thinking a lot. And about everything under the sun too. Moving into a house comes with a whole butt-load of new experiences, lessons, work, and relationship complexities. It's amazing how a new space can create so much newness.

MJ has been working A LOT. Everyday when we get home from work, he's off somewhere in the house fixing or building something. I'm surprised that he isn't complaining yet. Especially since I don't do nearly as much as him. And I feel a little guilty for it. I have very strong issues surrounding living in something that someone else lived in before me. The germs, dirty shower grout, the crumbs in the cabinets, the piles of lint inside the dryer, the dark specks in the bleach compartment of the washing machine...it all freaks me out. I absolutely HATE it. I do understand that I simply need to buckle down and take care of it, but there's a process that I have to go through in order to even prepare to deal with it. I have to get my mind right, give myself a pep talk, tell myself to breathe slowly... Yeah, it's really that bad. But it's me. And I don't know if it's something worth trying to change about myself. I have no problem cleaning up after myself. It's other strange people's mess that I can't deal with.

If I was single, here's how it would go. Realizing that I would have to buckle down and take care of everything on my own, on day 1, I would probably go through emotions of being overwhelmed and possibly even cry...despite the fact that I just bought a gorgeous house. On day 2, I would vent my frustrations to my mother and with my feelings in mind, she would help me construct a plan. On day 3, I would take note of all the things I have to do and make a list just to see if the plan we made the day before would actually work. On day 4, I would perhaps cry again but do a breathing exercise to get myself ready and tackle the first disgusting job. After exerting that much energy, tears and emotion into cleaning task 1, I would be done for the day. And I would continue that way until everything is done. Being that I'm NOT single, my husband just takes care of everything on minute 1 of Day 1. And then I exhale. I'm pretty sure he might think I'm pathetic, but I really could get it done if I was single. Getting it done would just take the equivalent of climbing Mt. Everest.

I can't wait until all this preliminary stuff is done. I just want MY home. Not someone else's home which I'm trying to make into mine. Once MJ has transformed the house, I can't wait to turn the house into our home. The decorating, the smells, the comfort, the organization, the usable spaces... I can't wait to turn the house into a place where my husband can relax. Since money doesn't grow on trees, I'm giving myself a year to make the transformation.

A year... Every since I was young, my family would usually focus on one big thing a year. A big vacation, a big purchase, a big project. Inevitably, I've adopted that philosophy in my adult life. The problem with that philosophy is that I really really really want to go on an overseas vacation with my husband before having kids. Being that I'm already freaking out (again) about being my age without kids, I really don't want to wait until the entire house is complete AND we've taken our overseas vacay before popping one out. Sigh... What to do? What to do? If I put the house transformation on hold and take the trip, will I be able to still work on the house with a kid on one hip?  Sherry and John tell me that I can. Who are Sherry and John, you ask? They are the proud parents of a toddler named Clara AND a pair of very talented do-it-yourselfers (DIY) who I stay connected to everyday by way of their blog Young House Love. No, I don't know them personally, but I am in LOVE with their blog. MJ and I have already determined that we are following their post on re-doing kitchen cabinets when we get around to doing so. So the fact that they are professional bloggers (yes John quit his job to pursue this), parents AND are renovating a house at the same time makes me believe that it's all possible! And I'll have WAY less to do than them when a little one finally arrives.

Or? Can a mom and dad travel for a week and not fall apart from being away from their baby too long? When is too early to take a trip without your child? If we do our dream London-to-Italy-to-France trip, we'll probably need more than 1 week right? So tell me parents, if I have a child before we take the trip, when's the best time to do it? At what age does the child have to be for me not to emotionally die while being away?

You know, I really admire the parents that don't stop their worlds for a baby. Knowing that a baby is going to take over the parent's lives, I really appreciate couples who keep themselves and their relationships as number 1 still. My parents taught me that they came first, and me and my sister came second. I agree that they had their priorities straight. When MJ and I have a baby, I want to fight for a balance. I want to fight for clarity and be able to recognize when I need some me time to decorate, do some photography or hang with my friends. I want to fight to remember that my husband is number 1 (after Jehovah of course). I say fight because I know that it will be one. The bond that I'm going to have with my baby is immediate and inevitable.

So... little fixes in the house, a BiG trip, baby and then the rest of the house? I think that's what I want to do. At least that's what I hope for. Living in an empty, non-decorated house is hard for me, but I really really really want this trip.

I guess I have my answer.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


Man. I want to take an overseas trip BAD.

OMG - Joss & Main

OMG. I'm hyperventilating. You know those savings sites like Living Social, Rue La La and Ideeli? Well I found one for home stuff! Joss & Main!!!! I see so many things on here I want to buy right NOW! Please God, keep me from reaching for my credit card! House savings here I come!!!!!!

I need to do an update post on the house. The floors are finally in and we've been fixing and adding things. I'll post soon.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Turn That Frown Upside Down

Even though the house transformation is still on the move, I'm taking a break. (I'll post more about our floors that are almost done soon.)

Today, I have the blues. I have no reason to have the blues. I just do. Maybe the rush of energy I had from purchasing and remodeling a home is dying out. Regular life is starting to seep back into my veins. But I'm going to try to combat these feelings. If you remember a few posts ago, I stated my goal for 2012. "Stop thinking so hard. Stop being so inwardly dramatic. Fill my head with good thoughts. Fill my pessimistic soul with fun." This is the perfect time to apply sentence #3 of that mantra.

So what's good? Hmm..

1. I get paid Friday.
2. I don't look a hot mess today.
3. My house IS coming along nicely.
4. My husband and I are good. No major issues, fights or problems lately.
5. Pandora Radio exists. I need some Fela Kuti music to cheer me up.
6. I have a cinammon raisin bagel to eat this morning.
7. CBS's 'The Good Wife' is back on.
8. My parents are good, healthy, and happy.
9. Jehovah God and I are still friends. I have a clean conscience.
10. Beyonce and Jay-Z are parents to a baby girl. =)

You know what I need? A good novel. Any suggestions?
Or an outing. I've been stuck inside for too long. I need an event. A plan. An out. I guess it's time to see what the girls are doing.

Saturday, January 07, 2012


I'm looking for lighting.

We went to Ikea today and realized that we were very ill-prepared for the trip. 'How much space do we have from the ceiling to the top of the powder room door?' 'Is the light in the stairway over the center landing or the top landing?' 'How big is the room because this chandelier might get swallowed up?' Unable to answer most of these questions, we went on to other things. You would think you would know your house but the specifics are endless.

Here's the light fixture in the hallway between the powder room and the entrance to the basement. Of course, it has to go. Did I say that I HATE old gold crap. Ugh!

Do you see my new crown molding?! Looks good huh!

I saw this beauty while hunting for drum pendants and was immediately attracted. It would go perfectly with the colors of the walls.


I'm too tired to look right now but here are the other spaces where I need new lights. One in the kitchen/dining area and one in the stairway. I'm thinking chandeliers in both places. A quaint one in the dining area and a big one in the stairway. 

 We did manage to get this cool pendant light from Ikea. I saw this in an inspiration photo last week so we were fully prepared for this one. I love this light.

I can't wait until we start the kitchen project. These cabinets need a facelift! One step at a time Jen. 

Friday, January 06, 2012


I hear that the main floor of my house is under construction. I can't wait to see what it looks like when I go home in a few. Decoration time is almost here! With that in mind, here are a few inspirational photos I found. I love the theme of them all.

We Have One Of These In The Garage!

GREAT idea. Wall art out of a pallet.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Realizations and Personal Progression

Thanks for all the lovely comments on the last post guys! This house is truly a blessing and I am too excited about it!

I'm now beginning to understand why people actually want fix it projects when looking for homes. As hubby and I finish one little thing after another, I get this wonderful sense of accomplishment that I've never felt before. It's quite enthralling! And as weird as this sounds, I love the fact that we're not done yet. It's the transformation. That's what it is. The transformation that's happening in front of my eyes is so exciting. Who would have thunk it?!

I'm also figuring out that we make a pretty good team. Hubby is very hardworking and darn near Mr. Fix It! I'm actually very impressed with his skills so far. He's never had to really use his drill, lug nuts, wrench, etc for the condo so this is an exploratory picture for me. I'm so glad I married him. I don't know what I would do with a husband that couldn't hammer a nail. But anyway, back to what I was saying. Hubby does the big stuff and I'm like the little robot that comes after him and handles all the little details. He paints the wall, I paint all the corners. I tape up the little nooks and crannies on the banister and he paints it. He says that I crack the whip and he does, but I'm not that bad. Lol. I promise. What it is is that I'm the designer in our team and he is the contractor. So naturally the direction comes from me. But I assure you that there is no whip being used in the re-designing of our house. =)  Renovating the house is bringing us closer together. I like it.

As for the renovation update:

We finished painting the kitchen/dining area the light blue I chose. Here are a few pics.

We also went ahead and painted the mud room in the light grey right off the garage right quick. The main floor of the house is completely void to allow for the paid contractors to demo and re-do our floors. I can't wait to see what it's going to look like. I'll be sure to take pics for updates. Once the floors and the molding is done, I'll be ready to decorate. There will still be a few details to handle like getting new wall plates to get rid of those yucky plastic white ones

 door knobs so we can trash the gold 80's style ones

and light fixtures so I can stop looking at what I call the tittie/boob light. You know which one I'm talking about. That one right below. Doesn't it look like a breast?!

Here's the pendant that I chose for over the sink. I don't know about the other ones yet.

So yeah, I'm as happy as a flea on dog's hair. It's amazing what tickles me at this age in comparison to two years ago. Good stuff!

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

New Home, New Year, New Beginnings

We're in! We are officially homeowners of a single family home! It's cool how it all happened in agreement with the end of the year. It's nice to be in a new house at the beginning of a new year. It's a great milestone memory if I say so myself.

So packing always sucks but we did most of it Friday. My sisters and brother-in-law came to help out. We couldn't have done it without them. Thank goodness we don't have much stuff though. A U-haul, a truck and a car later and we were moved in.

Here's how it looked after we moved in. We don't have too much in comparison to what it takes for most people to pack and move. Not having much furniture helps. Here's the first floor. The living room.

And the kitchen/dining area.

I didn't take any pics of the other floors being that all of our attention and focus is going into the main floor. So much so that we got to work immediately on our renovations. Check it out! Here are the paint colors that I sampled for the living room area which will be my woman's den. Since I want a grey, I ended up going with none of them. They were all too blue-ish in tone. So I went with a more grey based color.

I definitely want a sky, light blue in the kitchen so these were my first thoughts. I ended up buying something a lot lighter though.

Here's a couple of pics of the painting progression. I was disappointed with the color I chose because it was too white, but it's growing on me. The room is definitely a lot brighter and open now.

 Do you see the difference between the white trim on the bottom and the wall itself? The picture may not do the color justice.

Here's the color swatch. I went with the lightest one on the right. If I could do it all over again, I would pick the middle one.

Oh! I forgot to mention that our closing costs came in WAY lower than we thought, so we went ahead to Lumber Liquidators and bought new flooring for the entire first floor. The carpet and linoleum in the kitchen area HAS to go. I knew that the moment I stepped in the house. Here's a pic of the bamboo flooring we chose. I LOVE the color.

And since the floors are dark, the banister had to be sanded, primed and painted to a darker brown. We finished up one of the rails yesterday. My husband should be finishing up the other part today while I'm here at work.

Sanding was fun! I looked ashy as I don't know what after though!

We taped everything up and started in with the primer.

And here's the finished product! Wa la! Looks nice!

One day, when we have the money, we'll extend the bamboo flooring up to the steps. I hate carpet on steps. But until then, I'll have to live with it.

What else did we do? We changed all the toilet seats out, put up shower curtains, cleaned the bathroom and kitchens, lined the kitchen cabinets and put dishes up, put up a new mailbox and changed out the 2 lights in the front of the house. This is the old light. Hate it!

And here's hubby installing one of the the new ones.

He did a really good job I might add. This is a new experience for me to see him working on a house. I'm impressed!

Floors, new baseboards, crown molding and chair rail in the dining room area are going in next. We sign the contract today and begin work on Saturday. I'll update you soon!
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