Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Designing a Spec House for Me.

I decided to take the direction of this house my way. Meaning, I love the floor plan, so I decided to finish out the house {within my set work budget} with my own taste in finishes and style. 

I chose painted mission style trim, with a mix of stained thrown in. There is wainscotting in the den, and black hardware. The built ins offer storage and open shelving for display. 

I wish I had control over the natural light streaming in, but that did it all on it's own. 

The formal dining room has a Pottery Barn light fixture. {Carpet, rather than hardwood due to the budget...}

The great room offers a stone fireplace, large windows, and a built in nook to store your media components and other items. 

Open, but separate from the kitchen and breakfast area too. 

Ah, this kitchen. I love this kitchen. The only thing missing is a walk in pantry, but I will forgive it because of the amount of cabinet space available. 

Seeded glass pendants, white elongated subway tile, white and gray granite, stainless appliances, pro style range...Come to Mama. 

Look at all that storage!

48" pro style Kitchen Aid dual fuel double oven range. With a griddle. 

This window overlooks the covered deck, and I can just imagine my herbs growing in the window space behind the sink. 

A nice view looking toward the great room, and the secondary staircase that connects to the main one from the 2-story entry. 

Here is the mudroom with built in lockers, and connected to the laundry room. 

The laundry room with folding counter. 

A nice look at the special staircase. 

At the top of the stairs is the owners suite with large walk in closet and coffered ceiling.

John Louis closet systems with extra shelving.

Ah, this owners bath. Double vanities, walk in shower, bubble tub with window, and closed off stool room for privacy. 

Tile walk in shower with glass mosaic detail, and recessed soap shelf. This is similar to what we are planning for our own basement shower. Tile is ordered, and we are just waiting for our installer to have some free time. 

Bubble tub with a view. 

Secondary bedroom. This one has it's own private bath. 

Walk in closet off of the private bath. 

These next 2 bedrooms share a bath. 

The lower level features a bar, bedroom, bath, family room, and bonus room. You can use it for a media room, play room, craft room, etc. 

Covered deck with views. 

How do you like 'my' spec house? It's for sale if you would like to buy it!

I don't always tailor the spec home design to my personal taste, but do make every effort to make sure they are well designed, coordinated, on trend, and...pretty. Everyone wants a pretty home. 

Questions about finishes, appliances, or plumbing fixtures? Leave a comment and I will get back to you. 


Thursday, April 14, 2016

Birch Box April 2016

Always a fan when I get a Rifle Paper company designed box. These are my favorite, and I just adore Rifle Paper Company. They have the cutest things. Good thing this came with a 20% off coupon!

Let's dig into what I got this month!

I haven't had a chance to try this yet, but it looks promising. 

I am a big fan of the Tocca brand. This also smells amazing!

This may end up in the "giveaway or play makeup" pile. TBD

I LOVE this stuff. I had just run out of my previous sample too, so the timing is perfect. I like to use this on my roots before I blow dry and it does the trick without making my hair crunchy.

Overall, I am pleased with my Birchbox this month, and happy to continue the service. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Mall of America Nickelodeon Universe

After our American Girl Bistro Lunch, we headed to the center of the Mall of America. Also known as Nickelodeon Universe. It's come a long way from it's days as Camp Snoopy from my youth. We had the girls chill, while we figured the best way to purchase wristbands with points, so we could ride. $42 for an all day pass seemed excessive, especially since we were unsure how the girls would take to the rides, how long we would be there, and it was a lot of money. We saw that they had a 'Birthday Package' where we would buy 7 tickets {there were 7 of us with mom} and you get the 8th for free, 3 hours of unlimited rides, and a silly cup that was refillable. Seemed like a steal. Mom and Breanna kept the kids while I procured our tickets. Then I sold the free 8th ticket to a young family waiting in line #hustle

The Dora Ferris Wheel was the first ride, and we waved down to Breanna and Beah who were on the Carousel. 

Next up was the Bubble Guppy spinner ride. It was a blast, and I sent a photo of it to Tony to show him how much Gavin would have loved this. Another trip up for us with the kids is for sure going to happen.

We got our cart spinning! I had to calm it down, my tummy is not what it was 20 years ago...

Diego's Bus Ride!

Grandma took her girls on the small boxcar coaster. It was something everyone could ride and agree on. Avery, Jade and myself hit up some of the larger rides like the Orange Streak roller coaster. So fun! I am excited to ride coasters with my girl this summer at Adventureland!

It was such a fun treat to do this with the girls. I kept thinking about how much Gavin would love it too. I will once he is potty trained, but even so, he would have had so much fun with us. Another trip will be happening again sometime this year!

Monday, April 4, 2016

American Girl Bistro Lunch

On Saturday, Avery and I were  up bright and early to head to Minnesota. We drove to my brothers house in Owatonna to meet up with my mom, sister-in-law and nieces. We had lunch reservations at the American Girl Bistro in the Mall of America! 

Each girl had her doll and we were packed in the van and ready to go!

I had never been, and while Avery has a Bitty Baby, and a Truly Me doll, she has never been to the store. My mom wanted to take the girls out for lunch and a little shopping on a Girls Day!

Lunch was adorable. Each doll had a seat of her own, and the Bistro overlooked the Nickelodeon Universe in the center of the Mall of America. The roller coaster kept going by and the girls knew exactly what they wanted to do after lunch and shopping. Rides!

Each napkin holder was a pony holder that you get to keep. Each doll was given a cup and saucer, which you also get to keep. It was so adorable. 

See?! Adorable. Avery was having the time of her life. Mom also ordered the craft kits for each girl to play with. Avery is still playing with hers. 

Lunch was actually really tasty too. I was a bit concerned that there would be more emphasis on the dolls, location, etc than on the food, but it was very good. I had a wedge chopped salad with chicken, bacon, tomato, and blue cheese crumbles. It was really good. Avery selected a mini picnic with a small hamburger and hot dog. 

The Laue and Bower girls!

The girls spent quite a bit of time deciding how to use their gift cards. There was much debate from Avery on the Cheerleader outfit and accessories, having her doll visit the hair salon, getting her dolls ears pierced, buying clothes, or a toy for her doll. She eventually settled on getting her doll a scooter, new pair of shoes, and having her doll's ears pierced. 

I will post about the Nickelodeon Universe later this week. It was such a blast, and we had so much fun! So much so that this is what happened at dinner after we left the mall around 6.

Poor Beah couldn't stay awake any longer. She promptly fell asleep at the dinner table after we ordered our food, and slept all the way through dinner.