What do you know about art? And magnetic knife strips?

Being an art historian I can't pass up the chance to see if I still hold all that art history in my head after not working in or studying the field for over a year. So when I saw this little art history quiz on How About Orange? I couldn't pass it up.

I'm very happy to say that I still have it. I missed one. And I can't for the life of me figure out which one it is.

So what about you? What do you know about art?

Tomorrow my husband and I remodel our kitchen. We aren't allowed to paint. Cue the grumbling. But we can buy all new furniture and get rid of what we currently have! We're bored and this is cheaper than moving. Today while looking on Ikea.com, where we are getting our new kitchen furniture from, I also found this:

Ta da!!! What this, you ask? And why are you so excited about it Sara? It is a magnetic knife strip. No more knife blocks taking up space. AND! It's only $8.99!! I've been trying to find a simple, unassuming knife strip for the past two weeks but they're all $40 and completely not our style. This is simple. This is our style. The more simple I found, the more expensive it got! Until: Ikea. I just might compose a celebratory rap ballad for the store and make a video and post it on YouTube.

If you want one of these babies for yourself, just click here. Also, a little hint: it pulls double duty as a spice rack over your stove if you have those great little magnetic spice cans--which I will have tomorrow! I am all about efficiency and space saving.


Kitchen Remodel v. Moving

Every year when it comes close to renew our lease here at our current apartment we either have to move or remodel a room so we don't get bored. We can usually remodel a room for about $300-$400 depending upon the room. Versus paying an extra $500-600 per month for an apartment since we locked in our apartment rate long before apartments doubled in price around here. Remodeling a room is the financially responsible decision.

Lately, I've been hating on my kitchen. It's cramped and the fact that we've had to bring in an extra kitchen cart/island AND a bookshelf for our microwave and pots and pans in order to have room to store our food in the cupboards (I know, we ask so much) has made it even more cramped. And our dishwasher? Goes by the name of Jeremy. While we can't do anything about the lack of a dishwasher (that is mechanical and not human, anyway), we can throw out everything and start over!

So, we're giving away our kitchen furniture. Even our kitchen table! In almost three years we've probably eaten on it 5 times. We never eat at the table. I don't like my kitchen enough to eat in it. I like what we've done with the kitchen, but I don't like the kitchen as a whole because it's practically useless. And I do like the furniture we have, I just need a change and I need a brighter kitchen than we currently have.

It's all from Shopko and we probably spent no more than $350 on all of it (the cart was priced incorrectly and Shopko said, "If you don't tell anyone, we won't, and you can have it for this price."). So I don't feel bad about getting rid of it. Last night we went through our kitchen and threw out anything that was excess and non-essential. The cheap cookie sheets, the cheap cooking utensils, the excess frying pans that are not part of the nice set we got for our wedding. We paired down our food that we haven't gone through in over a year and was now woefully stale and beyond eatability. We got all of our pots, pans, and food into the built in cupboards. Our dishes will go on our new shelves from Ikea!

Ta-da! We can't put shelves on the walls because our apartments are structurally stupid (and the walls are made of cinderblocks, even behind the walls that aren't simply painted cinderblocks and are actually "finished") but I really wanted some shelving that I could showcase my pretty Anthropologie dishes and other nice Crate & Barrel cookware (yay for wedding presents!) on.

So we're buying two of those new shelves from Ikea. Probably in the honey color...having a hard time deciding between the honey and the white. (I'm thinking the white might be TOO white in our all white kitchen and I imagine honey every time I envision our kitchen. Thoughts?)

We'll stand one up on it's end (as shown in the photo above) on the wall that currently has the kitchen cart/island. That will hold our pretty Kitchen Aid, the decorative mixing bowls that I received as a wedding shower present from my late Aunt Lisa, and some other nice-looking appliances. The other will be laid on it's side (it was on it's side in the Ikea showroom) against the wall that currently has the kitchen table and the bookcase. The microwave (a new stainless steel one--I hate our current cheap white one that I can't get clean no matter how hard I scrub) and our convection oven will be on top of that one. Our dishes and bowls and our very pretty glasses will be on these shelves, too.

Above that I am going to invest in some of my favorite Etsy kitchen-related art prints and have a happy print wall that will definitely liven up the kitchen.

Sellers: Farouche, Sugarloop, Dazeychic, Artistscs28

I think I'll love my kitchen once this is over.


I don't see the "90% Angelina Jolie" resemblance...

My cousin Rachel posted this to her blog and I thought it would be fun to see what celebrities "facial recognition" said I looked like!

Angelina Jolie...90% look alike. Ummm...I wish!

If you want to see what celebrities you supposedly look like (though really, don't hold too much stock in it) just click on this "Celebrity Collage" below. Also, below my wonderful celebrity collage you can see my results from other photos.

MyHeritage: Celebrity Collage - Pedigree - Genealogy sites

Then, I used this photo:

It couldn't recognize a face. So I used this photo:

And it said I looked 73% like Terrence Howard:

All the way from Angelina Jolie to a man.


New Paintings and Great Desktop Wallpapers

I have new paintings. But over the weekend I came down with a monster virus. I have no voice and my throat feels like it's on fire. Doctor said lots of rest and fluids because that's all you can do for a virus.

This means that I haven't gotten up the energy to take the pictures and edit them and post up on Etsy yet, which is why my shop is still woefully short of anything new.

But there's new stuff sitting on my art desk so it will be coming this week. In the meantime, I've finished my grape juice and am now working on my husband's apple juice.

I'll probably get around to it tonight since my husband helps me take the photos and he'll be home from work soon.

In the meantime, here's a snippet:

A single, ready to hang abstract painting

These, and many more, will be part of the mini painting greetings. These are not yet finished.

Also, check out this site. www.meomi.com They have really cute desktop wallpapers and stuff. Just explore the site and you can find some great illustrations. And click on the stuff at the bottom--it's interactive. :) Thanks to decor8 for introducing me to this website.

UPDATE: I did post my new painting! You can buy it at my Etsy shop.


What's Going On

1. My meal plan is rocking my life right now. We got all the food for an entire month, meat included, for $240. Cue "Hallelujah" music. And now, I don't have to think about dinner. I just have a note on the fridge on what to thaw the night before in the fridge. So easy. And we're losing weight. Perfect.

2. Jeremy's birthday "Date Night" at Aveda (couples massage and couples pedicures) was absolute heaven. I can do without the pedicure because I'm a little short for the chair so it wasn't completely comfortable, but we've decided it's a necessity to budget in a couples massage every two or three months from Aveda. Aveda > Massage School. Period. I've never had a good massage from the massage school, so we're gonna stop falling for their "2 for 1" weekend.

3. I am apparently totally cool for being friends with my friend Amanda, who is a nutritionist. Because our clients have been wanting a nutrition roundtable for a LONG time now and no one here knew a nutritionist or how to get one (though I would say, "Just call a gym...") so when I said my friend was a nutritionist at Alpine Fitness I officially became the girl with connections and great ideas. So, Amanda, thank you for existing and being willing to come and teach our retirees about nutrition. (And way to go with your future fame, I'll be looking for your face on fliers around town. And definitely feel free to bring brochures with your contact info on them at Alpine Fitness.)

4. I made a life list. It has activities on it that I need/want to get done every week. There's a section for "daily" activities (make dinner, do some yoga, laugh with Jeremy, eat some fruit), "5 times per week" (paint/draw, gym or wii fit, blog), and "a la carte" (10 per week from the following list) (take a bath, play a game, go out for dessert, take a nap, clean the house, call a friend, etc...). I'm hoping this will help me balance things better, get my Etsy shop more up and running (greater in-flow will equal greater out-flow, I just need to get that in-flow thing started), get my weight loss going, etc...

5. I've been in counseling to deal with Jeremy's family and my therapist (and my bishop, before my therapist) told me that I'm supposed to just stay away from them because they're toxic and the father has personality disorders. Such a relief to have a professional tell you that you aren't completely harsh about the whole situation and haven't been overreacting and have, in fact, been far too nice up until recently. So that's a big relief to me. And Jeremy completely agrees, so there's no conflict there. But he's getting really down because he's losing hope that his family will ever be a "family" again because his dad isn't making any progress, so Jeremy's starting counseling at the university (free for students). But I'll be done after my next appointment. He said it's probably "safe" now to "put a laser beam on" my bad memories so I can get them all out and not have to worry about them anymore. So next/last session will suck, but it'll be good. And I haven't talked about this at all on here before, so most people aren't going to have any idea what is going on, but I'm very liberated right now so I wanted to write about this small snippet anyway.

6. We're going to clean the house tonight. Very excited about that. I really like my new Swiffer wet jet and my Swiffer duster. Swiffer = happiness. And the wet jet cleaning solution smells really good.

7. Steamed fish and asparagus in parchment tonight. Excited about that. :)