House Update: The Living Room

I don't consider myself design-challenged, until I step into my house. I know what I like, but in my experience sometimes heading outside your comfort zone can prove to be a good thing. So I start to question my instincts and everything I thought I knew heads out the window!

I know what I want the end result to be, but getting there is a whole different story! Though there are endless options, finding something that is just right is basically impossible.

I'm quick to make decisions, which has sometimes been the problem. I start to get impatient and want it all to be complete!

And then there is the situation of not owning the house we are living in. And not only do I not own it, I doubt I'll ever live in something so design-challenged ever again (super long and narrow. Damn you beautiful old San Francisco victorian homes). So do I invest in good pieces that then won't work next time around?!

I'm starting with the living room. We have never really had a very good/comfortable living room and I'm on a mission to change that! This is the "before". I'm the first to judge it, don't worry.

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Furniture-wise, here is the low down:

Leather chair: keeping and keeping in the same spot. I'll likely put an end table next to it and a big plant in the corner. TV: I love the location of the TV symmetrically, but it is a tiny bit too high. If we move it, we will move it to where one of the bookshelves is, which will throw off the whole look I was going for. But that is ok. Comfort over design. I must remember that. Bookshelves: Right now the bookshelves are too full. I'll figure that out one we decide what we are doing with the TV. Couch: Oh man oh man, I'm ready for a new couch ASAP. The color is my major problem with it. I want something white (ivory). Although maybe grey, blue, or TEAL, would be cool? I don't know. Husband is being really picky on this one. Wants a chaise badly (and so do I) but I just don't see how our living room can even close to fit one?! So I don't know. Rug: I like this rug but it is a little too big for the space (and it is only a 5x8!!! See my problem?!). It won't be hard to put somewhere else. I just ordered two runners that I wanted to try. One is a black + white print and the other is a navajo pink pattern. Trying to figure out if I should keep the big pieces neutral or throw in some color for a statement. We will see when I try them both out! Coffee Table: As you can see, we don't have one. And there isn't much room for one either. I'm planning on getting a tufted ottoman style. This might help alleviate the whole chaise debacle (in the couch section).

I'm starting with a couch. I really want to try every single couch in the whole world before making a decision, but alas, that can't happen. I've narrowed it down to three (although I'm still constantly looking for others to throw into the hat).

I've been loving the Bernhardt Morris Sofa for a long long time. Part of me worries about it going out of style, not being modern enough for the space, etc. I freaking love it though. I haven't sat in it, but it is just so beautiful!

 

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I stumbled upon the Jonathan Adler Malibu while in Portland. We sat in it and I loved it. It was soft and comfy, but it was a little low to the ground. This is something I'd like to avoid, but it is pretty and comfy, so it stays in the running.

malibu_sofaThis True Modern Luna sofa was a find from Simply Grove. She has it and it looks amazing in her space (obvi, since she is an interior designer). It is comfortable but might be a little too modern for the space (and for me)? I would get it in Ivory.
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Then there is always this! 8d1cabf94e9380696d03ca09a63da64f

This is where things stand. I'm going a little crazy thinking all of this through in my mind, so I'm glad to have some organized thoughts written down here.

Monthly Meal Plan - Paleo Inspired

I used to cook dinner every night. I worked from 6 am - 11 pm every single day yet I still managed to come home close to midnight and cook dinner for the following day. Now I work from home and I can't seem to make that happen once a week. I have no excuse. My younger self is much more of a badass than my older self. And if I don't start up again soon, I'm going to lose whatever chef skills I might have been able to claim I had in the past.

After weeks of the husband bringing home dinner from his job that provides a chef and some to-go boxes, I was feeling somewhat un-domesticated. The guilt crept up and something had to change. In about an hour I put together a pretty basic meal plan, and so it started. My goal is to cook 2-3 times per week.

I tried to make sure we had variety each week but also (and perhaps more importantly) that I could use some of the ingredients for several recipes that week (for example, using half a lemon one night and the other half the next night). And I somewhat succeeded.

So here is my plan of action in case any of you are interested.

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Monday - Salmon Cakes. Made with real salmon instead of canned and boiled the sweet potato. Definitely a mis-leading recipe in terms of time, but tasted really good!

Tuesday - Bring food home

Wednesday - Crock Pot Chicken Soup.

Thursday - Bring food home

Friday - Lemon Talapia

 

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Monday - Bring food home

Tuesday - Paleo Mini Meatloaves 

Wednesday - Coconut Lime Shrimp

Thursday - Bring food home

Friday - Bring food home

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Monday: Slow Carb Chili. Love this recipe! Make it often as the husband is often on the slow carb diet.

Tuesday - Paleo Green Chili Chicken Tostadas

Wednesday - Bring food home

Thursday - Paleo Pot Roast with Sweet Mashed Potatoes

Friday - Ian gone: CEREAL!

 

 

My Style: Geometric + Neon

I haven't shopped at Nordstrom Rack in years, but that might just change. I saw this shirt and fell in love. Though I hate the high-low or mullet style (as I like to call it), I figured I would let that go because the pattern is so worth it. I paired the tee with my new favorite pair of pants. Rag & Bone jeggings. Wow, as I type I just realized how bad this all sounds. Mullet shirts AND jeggings in the same post? I'm even judging myself right now. But for real, these pants are literally the softest things I have ever felt.

And those pumps? A $14 Nordstrom Rack purchase that has now become my go-to shoe for basically any outfit and any occasion. If you wanted to describe me in a shoe, this would be it.

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This Look: Tee: Nordstrom Rack | Pants: Rag & Bone | Necklace: H&M | Heels: Similar (Amazing $14 find) | Handbag: Vince Camuto from Nordstrom

Photography: Hannah Suh

Hot Chocolate Party

This is the perfect addition to your next fall get together. A hot chocolate bar! When I saw that there was such thing as "Fine Hot Chocolate" I was equal parts intrigued and excited. 

Ticket Chocolate offers a huge variety of gourmet chocolate flavors on a stick. Just stir in a cup of steamed milk and you've got yourself some of the best hot cocoa to give your guests. How is that not the perfect treat for your next bash? 

THE SETUP: Steamed Milk in cute pitchers: Anthropologie | Confetti Coffee Mugs: West Elm | Hot Chocolate on a Stick: Ticket Chocolate | Marshmallows: Ticket Chocolate | Signage: Bright Room Studio | Photography: Lili Durkin Photography

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And. Now. This.

And Now This is a culmination, a follow up, and a response to failures and successes. It is more me than I've ever been. It means more to me than anything I've ever done. It is real life. It is, in many ways the finale, and yet it is just the beginning.

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It is a place to peel back the curtain on inspiration and take a closer look. It is about learning from the stories of those 4-year-over-night-successes, not comparing yourself to them. It is a place for growth and conversation but not for judgement. It is about going for it without letting your better judgement get in the way.

"And Now This" means just what it sounds like, which is why is the perfect name for this venture. It is open ended, it is anything, it is everything. It is about new stages, new starts, new chapters. It is about moving on and moving forward. It isn't a niche, it isn't a topic, it is real life. That beautiful real life. It is about success, and growth, and learning, and inspiring  your everyday life.

So here we are. The beginning. Here's to new chapters. To starting something. To using your failures as the stepping stones to your next success.

Here's to going for it.