Friday, June 15, 2018

Chestnut Oak Drive


In July 2012, I moved from Provo to Lehi. I had been living in Provo for the past 7 years, moving apartments every 6-9 months going to college, then getting my first job at the Thanksgiving Point Emporium. So, moving to another city, into a more permeant residence was a huge change for me. I moved to be closer to work, and I had a few friends in the neighborhood but it was a bit scary since I was used to being surrounded by lots of people my age, in my same stage of life. But now I was living in a home, surrounded by young families and I only knew a handful of people. This was also my first try at living alone, I was renting the top part of the house, and my landlords lived in the basement, so I wasn't completely alone, which was nice, but it was still another huge change not to have any roommates.

I lived in this beautiful home for 6 full years, and those 6 years were wonderful. I learned to absolutely love living on my own (it took a few months, I called my sister and her husband over a few times when I was scared for the first couple of weeks..). I learned so much while living in this home, and I grew up a lot in those few years. I learned a lot about independence, quitting jobs, being unemployed, getting new jobs, being let go from jobs, dating, heart break, dating apps, home maintenance, traveling, pet ownership, mental illness, my testimony and what the church means to me personally, how to make new friends, interior design, how to paint a home, how much I hate painting a home and commitment. But most importantly, I feel like I learned a lot about who I am, what I want out of life, what I like, what I don't like, asking for help when I need it, being responsible (I have always been responsible, but living on my own taught me even more about it) and a million other things.

Needless to say, the six years I spent in this house were very important to me. Living in this beautiful space was the perfect bridge from living in Provo, bouncing from apartment to apartment without many responsibilities, to owning my own home and starting my own company. Everything I needed to learn to get from point A to point B, I learned in this house.

Half of these pictures were taken the day I moved in, before I had moved in any of my things. The other half were taken the day I packed up my first moving box, 6 years later. Since this was a rental property, I couldn't make all the changes I had envisioned for the space, but I love the way all the rooms filled in with things that I have collected throughout my travels and other things that I love. 

I debated about putting all the "before" pictures first, followed by all the "after" photos, but I decided it was more fun having them right next to each other to really see how I made the space my own.

The entry hall, view from the front door





The Bedroom 



(The after of the bathroom was a cluttered mess, so I didn't even attempt to take a photo of it..)











I took close ups of some of my decor since I loved how everything came together over the years, and who knows how everything will fit in the new house. I will probably have to make up new arrangements of things, so I wanted to remember how they had originally looked.


This is my paternal grandmother's locket, she wore it everyday that I can remember and my maternal grandmother's cameo brooch, she passed away before I was born.




The Study
This was my favorite room in the house









The Guest Bathroom
I loved how adorable this bathroom was


The Kitchen
The first thing I did before I was even fully moved in was paint it a light grey, I could not stand that deep red color.





A lot of my decor came from parties I had thrown with my friends and family. The popsicle honey comb was made for a Queen Bee Birthday party we threw for my sister Bethy. All the decorations on the table was from my annual valentines tea party.



I absolutely love getting Christmas cards from family and friends. I would hang each one up as I got them. I would keep them up all year long, I would put each families Christmas card's together on the wall, it was fun to see the changes over the years.


The Family Room



For some reason, the after pictures of the whole room didn't get saved :( I had beautiful photos of how everything turned out. But I have this snap chat picture I took during the spring when the days started getting longer, which shows the main gist of the room.


The close ups of the room got saved though, so that's good. I love the abstract art piece I got to hang above the TV, I do wish it was a bit bigger, but I still love it. I picked it because I liked the colors, but loved it even more once I learned more about it. There are four panels, and each panel has raised circles in different patterns, they aren't super noticeable, as they blend in with the colors, but they also aren't hard to find. Those raised circles are actually brail, and each panel has a different letter, when put together, they spell Hope. The more time I spent analyzing the painting, the more I realized it goes from dark in the corners to a bright white in the middle, which perfectly embodies the idea of Hope. 

The artist's daughter is blind, so she creates art work that her daughter can interact with and appreciate. I purchased the piece from her Etsy Store, JMJArtStudio.


These colorful bookshelves were the decor I was most proud of. Most of the items in them came from my travels, so each piece has a story behind it. I got all the vintage colored books back when I worked at Pioneer Book in Provo. I gathered them over a period of time, I choose them by color and by their covers, I haven't read any of them....


Travels represented in this photo:
Rome, Italy
Florence, Italy
Pasao, Germany 
Stratford-Upon-Avon, England
Dernstein, Germany 
New York, New York
Ashville, North Carolina  




When it came time to move, I was overwhelmed by the love and support of my family and friends. I had so many people help me pack up all my things, then my wonderful family dedicated a day of their summer vacation to help me move everything out on moving day, June 16, 2017. My dad and sister Karin were such champs and didn't take any breaks throughout the day, they are such a hard workers! I was also surprised at how into moving this kids got. I thought they would move a box or two and then get bored and start playing games, but I could not of been more wrong. Every kid, even sweet little James, worked the entire day and were constantly asking me for more tasks, they developed very efficient assembly lines to get things moved out, then moved in. They were such great workers and I was and still am, so appreciative 




My Mom came over several times to help me pack up different rooms of the house. She is a master organizer and knows how to turn the most daunting of tasks into a manageable one in no time. I am so appreciative of all her help during this move. From spending our one afternoon of house hunting together, to convincing me to put in an offer, to talking me out of all my irrational fears of owning my own home, to supporting me during the buying process (I did it all on my own without any help from a realtor) to packing up my current home, to helping me move out, to unpacking in my new home and getting everything organized. I literally could not of done this without her by my side, giving me all the support I needed. Thank you so much mom!



While I loved my old house with all my heart, I must say, I love my new place even more! It was such an exciting and scary step to purchase my own home, but everything fell into place to perfectly. I only physically looked at one home (I did a ton of looking at different homes online), I only walked through it once and I put in an offer. As cheesy as it may sound, it was definitely meant to be. I will post about it sometime in the future.

Thanks for all the memories and lessons Chestnut Oak Drive.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Panda Party


Our favorite, spunky little Madison girl turned two this year! Bethy threw her a super fun panda themed birthday party since V is very into pandas at the moment. I loved how Bethy used that cute theme in all the decor, food, favors and even outfits!

Mama bear with her baby bear


Beth made this amazing picture collage out of pictures of V and pandas, it was so sweet!





Guests were encouraged to wear black and white to the party to fit in with the theme


There was a cute panda mask craft for the kiddos to do while we waited for all the guests to arrive



hand painted panda grilled cheese sandwiches for the kids!


Lots of tummy food from Panda Express for dinner









How adorable is this panda cake Bethy made?! The whole singing happy birthday tradition went over much better this year. Last year, at her first birthday, she got nervous that all the attention was on her and she cried during the whole song. This year, she LOVES the happy birthday song and smiled and giggled the entire time.





Black and white donut holes, panda cupcakes and birthday cake were all served for dessert!


Then it was time for a fun surprise, a panda balloon drop!


The kids LOVED it!




Next up, present time!



I got V this counting piggy bank, I was pleased to see it was a hit!







After the party, while the adults were cleaning up, we convinced Ben to hold Dubie. It was so cute to see a Burton Boy holding a kitty, they aren't as obsessed with animals as I am, but I am slowly working on getting them on my level. Dubie looked so big!



Meanwhile, these two were causing mischief with some of V's toys ....



Happiest of birthdays to you Vienne! Thank you for bringing so much sunshine and happiness into all our lives. I love you!