Wednesday, April 6, 2011
John and I have been on the road this past week, traveling up the east coast to see some friends and family. Our first stop was New Bern, North Carolina, to see our long-time friends John and Abby Gjertsen.
New Bern is a small town packed with charm. In fact, their downtown area is the way I wish all downtowns were: lots of fun boutiques, art shops, delis, and not a single chain-store to be found. Here's a shot I took on the street by a gorgeous brick church:
There was also this old hardware store, lit with gas lamps and stuffed to the gills with everything you'd need to restore a period house:
They almost had to drag me out of there. (And if I tell you I bought a copper toilet float - with no intention of using it in a toilet - you won't judge me, right?)
New Bern's main claim to fame is that it's the birthplace of Pepsi-Cola. Since John drinks enough Diet Pepsi and Diet Mountain Dew to bleed soda, we of course had to stop in to the little corner store:
On our second morning with the Gj's, they received some terrible news. After some tears and hugs, we left them in the care of their families and continued on to see my parents and grandmother in Williamsburg, Virginia. The weather was as miserable there as it was in New Bern, which is to say cold and rainy, so we spent our time prowling antique malls or playing PS3 at their place. (My dad is addicted to racing games, so we were up past midnight crashing into each other and shouting with laughter. Good times.)
And, because it isn't possible for me to leave an antique mall empty-handed, we currently have an old radio cabinet wrapped up and strapped in to our back seat. I forgot to take a picture, but while searching online I stumbled across this ad for it:
Our final destination - and where I'm writing this post - is just outside of Washington, D.C. Our good friends Mat and Amy live here, so we're staying with them and their two little boys. We timed our trip to coincide with the cherry blossom festival, which means DC is crowded, but also well worth the crowds:
John and I walked around the tidal basin on Monday, and spent some time just sitting under the dense canopy of flowers:
We've always loved DC - we even came here for our honeymoon - but I tend to forget just how much walking it takes to get around. I guess I need to be logging more hours on the ol' treadmill desk.
Looking out across the water:
We also saw several painters out:
From there we walked to the Lincoln Memorial and the new(ish) World War II Memorial. It's hard to take an original picture of things so heavily photographed, but here are my best shots (pun intended [of course]):
We head home Thursday - wish us luck on the 15-hour drive! (Oy.)
Monday, April 4, 2011
I know some of you still have snow on the ground, but for us Floridians summer is already kicking into high gear. And summer means flip flops.
Yep, we southern girls have 'em for everything: casual wear, evening wear, 'flops with heels, 'flops with big poofy flowers glued on...you name it. They're cheap impulse buys, so it's easy to accumulate a whole mountain of flip-flops in a single season.
But say you don't like the "mountain" storage method. Say you need to get your mound o' 'flops off the floor and into a tidy system, but are limited on space. What then?
Now, the fun part is the actual hangers. Here's how to make them:
First, grab a handful of the flimsiest metal hangers you can find in your closet. (You want to be able to bend them with your hands, if possible.) You'll also need a pair of needle-nosed pliers.
Cut off the bottom section of the hanger like so:
Now, using both your hands and your pliers, bend your hanger into this approximate shape:
I recently went back and decided to pretty them up, though. First I put a fresh coat of spray paint on them:
Make sure your ribbon is snug, so it doesn't fall off the hanger. To secure it you can use fabric or super glue - or, if the glue stains the ribbon like mine did, glue dots also work really well.
Step 6 shows the backside of the hanger. I suggest flipping it over like this to trim off the excess ribbon.
Actually I have even more than this, but I didn't want to hang them all up because then you'd know I have that many flip-flops and it'd be, like, totally embarrassing.
And now en masse:
Plus, here's a handy bonus: you can also hang your ballerina flats on these!
And finally, since I spent the better part of an evening cleaning it out, allow me to present - for your judging pleasure - a glimpse inside my closet:
I had to use a wide-angle lens to get this; it's pretty cramped in there. As you can see, when I'm not wearing flip-flops I'm wearing little boy's sneakers or boots. (I loooove boots.) I think the last time I wore a pair of heels was our Christmas cruise, but at least they look pretty on the shelves. ;)
So, do you guys have any nifty space-saving tips from your closet? Share in the comments!
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