home improvement, rescue, thepups, weight loss

Puppies and surgery and home repairs, oh my!

February is almost here and so much is happening! It’s been a whirlwind of activity and so far, all good in my life. Except for the whole election and narcissistic dictator posing as president but I’m not going to touch that right now. So here’s what’s been going on in 2017 for me.

The puppies!

After all the amazing work Alive Rescue did to save Barbara, Joey and I wanted to give back. They had an emergency foster situation for three 7 week old puppies and their mom Cookie. With only a few hours notice, we went from a house of 3 dogs to a house of 7 plus the cat late on a Sunday night.

Mama Cookie ❤️

Cashew, Chicklet, Caramel, and Cookie have been hanging out with us for a few weeks and it’s been puppy chaos! The puppies were weaned and Cookie went over to an amazing foster last Friday. The pups went to an adoption event Saturday and they can be found here for information and applications. They are sweet girls with spunk and love and puppy kisses. I love being able to give them a safe and warm home as they wait for their furever families.

Surgery

I have talked about it on my instagram but haven’t brought it up here yet so here goes! I am getting my Lapband removed and getting Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy aka the sleeve. 


I have been having Lapband complications for about a year and a half and kept hoping that it would get better with adjustments. After throwing up most of my meals and only being able to eat things that could digest fast and easy aka junk food, I finally realized I needed to change. Combine the band failing with a terrible boss who was a phony, idiot, and useful as shoes on a fish and the end of 2015/beginning of 2016 was rough. Health is my priority and after my girls trip in October where I couldn’t stop throwing up, I made my doctor’s appointment. After a pretty negative UIC experience where I did not feel confident about their level of care, I made an appointment with Suburban Surgical Care Center on the recommendation of a friend, Catherine. I met with Dr. Guske on December 5th and started the process. Thanks to BlueCross Blue Shied and my work having a great bariatric policy, I was approved to have my revision to the sleeve. My surgery is scheduled for February 22nd and I am SO excited. To continue on my journey of health and happiness and getting to my goal weight is so exciting and thrilling. Am I nervous? Heck yes. The excitement and the motivation I have to get healthy, gain muscle, fuel my body with good things and treat it with love and kindness is overpowering any nervousness I have.

Home Repairs

We are doing a ton of work on the house in the next year and are getting started now. New windows are being quoted out and getting done asap. We got a new roof last year and gutters so our window casings will match the same ivory. We are getting a new garage, doing the landscaping, and redoing part of the kitchen. It’s a lot of work and I really look forward to updating the house while still keeping the vintage charm. It’s also really fun to drive around and get coffee or snuggle on the sofa with Joey and talk and plan and hang out. Having a partner like him, to dream with and build our dreams, to laugh and disagree, to become a better communicator with, to fall asleep with at night, it’s something I am thankful for everyday. It’s going to be awesome to document the before and after of all the improvements! Can’t wait to show you!


It’s going to be a busy next two months and I look forward to documenting, adding some video blogs in, and sharing my journey.

What’s going on in your 2017? What are you looking forward to?

cooking, DIY, food, home improvement, life

Falling into the season

I don’t know about you but I can never remember what I do Friday nights. I’m pretty sure it involved some wine and puppy snuggles and a book though. Usually I remember by what I ate for dinner but this one’s a blank so must have been REAL exciting.

Saturday Joey and I went to Evanston Rebuilding Warehouse, a great spot in Evanston which is a non profit that helps the community. They sell reclaimed items, often from home/building remodeling jobs and so you can find tons of vintage and unique items for sale at a great price. They use the money for on job training, education and to help the community. We found an amazing half-door made from fence posts, that worked out perfect for our kitchen/dining room doorway. I’m planning on redoing our dining room into a rustic design so this was the perfect start. One side was finished and the other was blank so with some extra wood from Home Depot and a few nails, we added a ledge and matched the finished side. I’d say it came out pretty darn good. It came spring-loaded so it was a breeze to attach and is heavy enough the dogs and cats can’t push it. Total project cost: $32

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Fall is my favorite season and I couldn’t wait for this weekend and some crisp weather so I could do some seasonal cooking and baking. I was really craving some chili and cornbread for a comfy fall dinner so we loaded up the crock pot Saturday morning. I have a great chili recipe I will post this week and it does not disappoint! I also made the cornbread with some garlic herb butter, I highly recommend doing this to add some great flavor.

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love these chili pots

Sunday Joey worked at night and I felt like baking so I ended up making a cream cheese filled pumpkin  bundt cake from Real House Moms and it turned out great!! While usually I would just slather delicious cream cheese frosting all over it, I did actually do a glaze because the bundt cake looked so good and I didn’t want to sugar overload anyone.

I love how all my pictures came out and can’t be happier with my Canon Rebel T6 camera Joey gave me for my birthday. I love taking food photos and trying to plate my dishes better. I am going to grab a 50mm camera on the recommendation of my besties Alex and Caroline to have a better depth of focus.

What did you all do this weekend?

 

DIY, garage sales, happy, home improvement, ikea, joeywaffles, laundry, pinterest, renovations, thrifty

You can’t turn a home into a housewife…wait, what?

Okay so you might not be able to turn a home into a housewife but you can make a house into a home and the process is more fun then the end results.
A little back story about myself. Growing up in Highland Park, I had no clue how to pick a Chicago neighborhood when it came time to move out. I wasn’t sure what would be affordable and fun but also fit my laid back style. Honestly, the only reason I lucked out with my great apartment in West Rogers Park was because my Dad owned the building. A 3rd floor walk up in a 1920’s building, arched doorways and built in book shelves, I fell in love.
Sure, I was in walking distance of the best Indian restaurants but parking was terrible. Whether it was sitting in JoeyWaffles car on a sunny afternoon in the summer, watching the local drug dealer in a wheel chair sell his weed who we couldn’t believe we were a)seeing this and b)wow he’s tough, the chair doesn’t even have handles or having to fight with a local curmudgeon about walking his dog on a leash, there was never a dull moment. So when I made the big move to live with JoeyWaffles in Evanston, I said good-bye to sketchy side streets and hello to North Shore yuppies. 
Don’t get me wrong, Evanston isn’t exactly traditional North Shore but it’s apparently where the cools kids who want a mix of urban restaurants with suburban parking are flocking to, That’s as best as I can reckon anyways. Plus with Northwestern, tons of places are open late and these kids aren’t troublemakers because they’re too busy studying or watching their football team. While it’s kind of cool to be living in a city getting a huge amount of buzz, owning a house just means higher property taxes, very NOT fun.
The funnest part of being a first time home dweller (Joey’s the owner) is the decorating. One of the most recent projects we undertook was changing the front bonus room area from a sort of man cave/junk room to a man cave/home office. All I wanted was a corner to have a little office area and with some O.P.I. paint from Clark+Kensington, an IKEA desk and some garage sale finds, I have a wonderful office space. You can see the before and after below. 

So far besides the office, we have: painted the front hallway from a bright red to a yellow and grey and added some molding; bought the  Series 6 LoveSac sofas which the pets can’t get enough of; bought, sanded, and stained the IKEA Stenstorp kitchen island; renovated our heated back porch to become a laundry room and bought a new LG steam washer/dryer set; painted our pantry, and are in the process of renovating our bathroom and turning the second bedroom into a video game display room. 
I love being able to do whatever we want in our home and making it our own. With a lot of my friends settling down, buying their own places, or looking for different places to rent, it would have been great for them to have what New York has, Compass. I love that their site makes is so user friendly and idiot proof. You can click sales, rental, or agent, pretty self explanatory. 
You can also favorite places, request a status, make an appointment, and such. My favorite feature is by far the Neighborhood Guide which lets’ you assess each neighborhood and see where you fit in socially. places to go, and pictures. I would love to see them do a Chicago site and see where my friends fit in. I also think that really getting to explore more areas, getting out of a comfort zone and seeing what your city has to offer is a great thing. 
I’m looking forward to getting our bathroom done over Thanksgiving and posting pictures. What current home renovations/DIY projects are you doing? What have you done to make your home your own?