Friday, July 26, 2013

Trending - Embellished Walls

Wallpaper was once the bane of everyone's existence. Let's face it, the 90's were a dark period for a lot of things :)  When I utter the word "wall paper" to a client, they usually shudder thinking of some bygone day when they were removing wall paper for hours.

But now wall paper is making a come back and it is better than ever. And according to embellished walls are the next new trend!  It is much more beautiful, environmentally friendly, and incredibly easy to maintain.  Type II wallpaper - designed for commercial areas - can be cleaned with soap and water. Try doing that to your painted walls!
I am a firm believer that Powder bathrooms can be crazy cool!  This one has faux-ostrich leather wall paper on it's walls. Very neutral with a small pattern to add a little interest.

While some wall paper is subtle, other patterns can be bright and colorful!

Wallpaper is a great way to add some interest to a space. It can add color and pattern to a space or to compliment the rest of the decor. This beautiful dining room was transformed with a beautiful striped wallpaper with a subtle damask pattern.  Paired with simple draperies, this space became an elegant play on textures, patterns, and colors.

So, if someone suggest wall paper to you, take a deep breath and imagine all of the possibilities!

 - Erika and Erin

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Flowers and more flowers....

While visiting my family in Michigan, I took my nephew over to my boyfriend's parents' house (convenient that they only live a few miles from my parents!)  Their garden was wild in full bloom and my nephew and I picked plenty of fresh berries for my mom's fruit salad. 

Being an avid lover of flowers, I had to stop and take a few pictures of the amazing garden!  Gorgeous job Jane! (And Dusty too! :)

Monday, July 22, 2013

I have the coolest friends.... EVER!

I am really lucky to have some amazing people as friends.  About 6 months ago.... I picked up a strange interest in dinosaurs. Maybe it has to do with my niece and nephew watching Dinosaur Train every morning.  I don't know what started it, but I love them!  Check out the awesome things my friend, Susan, got me for my birthday!
First of all, the package was wrapped with this on top.  Just watch this video and you'll understand why this is so funny!

Next up... dino surprise mug!

Dinosaur spaghetti spoon!

Dino tea strainer thing!

A-MAZING! Thank you Susan for the coolest gift a dino-crazed girl could ever ask for!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Michigan Summers - Post 4

Last day of Upper Peninsula posts :) .... lots of pictures! It was just so pretty.
This was the first year that we drove down to the lower peninsula to see my family! Of course there were some great things to see along the way.

To get to the lower peninsula, we drove along Lake Superior for several hours before turning south to ride over the Mackinac Bridge.  Evan and his brothers had discovered this little tiny water fall when they were kids called, Scott Falls.  It was adorable and incredibly serene albeit being 30 feet from the road. 

Plant growth underneath Scott Falls

Lake Superior

After living in Michigan for 10 years, you'd think I would have made it to the Pictured Rocks.... nope.  With a little detour, we saw one of the most beautiful landscapes! I don't think words can really describe..... so enjoy!

The bridge! I haven't seen this sight in years.  It was strange the warm feeling it conjured up; so many great memories of crossing that bridge and enjoying a day on Mackinac Island, or heading to Marquette. It's like a whole other world lay on the other side of the bridge....

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Michigan Summers - Post 3

Pastie day!  Evan and I finally got a few hours to ourselves and we had 2 missions: 
1. Find a pastie shop, get pasties, and enjoy the heck out of them!
2. Find some waterfalls and play.

Our first mission took us to a tiny nearby town to a Bakery.  We had to wait 15 minutes while our pasty warmed up, so we walked the town.

Pasty, not to be confused with pastie, are delicious meat pies the minor's used to eat for lunch. simple... but so good! They're hard to find anywhere south of Michigan and a super-filling, hearty lunch! Click here for more info :)

After our picnic lunch, it was time to find waterfalls. We headed to the Black River, hiked around and toured 5 different falls.  I would send you to some informational link -but the Black River is quite and has falls throughout it's entire path. 

To reach each falls, we had to hike through some woods.  There aren't many old growth forests like this near my little apartment!

I wish I could tell you which falls were which (Greater Conglomerate, Potowatami, Rainbow, Gorge, Sandstone), but I can't... so just enjoy the pictures!

Oh yes... even more pictures to come!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Michigan Summers - Post 2

Lake Superior is notoriously frigid even during the summer months.  But you can find pristine sandy beaches perfect for picnics and playing a little Frisbee.  Getting the entire crew packed and ready is never an easy task, but enjoying the sun and water was so worth it!
Well.... we made it! What do we do now?

Enjoy the scenery and lack of people....

Run around.....

Stick our toes in the water....

Build sandcastles.....


Smile some more....

We had perfect weather this trip, high of 75-80, low of 50.  It only rained on the last day and even that was a welcome occurrence; it stormed late at night while the grown ups took a hot sauna.  Stepping out into the cold rain felt incredible!

After the beach, a few of us headed to the Lake of the Clouds, it is a beautiful lake situated in a valley between to mountain ridges in the Porcupine Mountains (you can actually read a tiny bit about it here..... Lake of the Clouds).

It is breathtakingly perfect! If you're lucky (and we weren't) you can see hikers make their way across a bridge down near the mouth of the lake.  That's how few people there are here :)

Last visit, we actually saw a black bear and of course my nephew requested a new picture of a black bear.  This was the closest I got :)

One of the family traditions is to collect stones for the family sauna at this particular beach.  I learned quickly that good stones are "flat, round, and heavy." You'll know a good one when you pick it up and it is hot and heavy.  

Yes.... still more!