wonderfully made: December 2013

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Christmas 2013 : events

Now that I've shared my spoils, here's more of a peek into the days surrounding Christmas, and beyond:

We each had assignments for Christmas eve so Mark and I brought individually sized cheese balls and some crispy asparagus. The cheese balls proved hard to transport over 50 miles to Arlington, but they made it and were intact upon arrival!

Audrey got a play phone that closely resembled an iPhone for Christmas. Noah promptly pretended to 'take photos' of me with her 'phone'. Kids these days...

Sweet girl! They played a little Leap Frog bingo before dinner.

LOTS of gifts under that tree! Noah and Audrey had to practice patience and waited until after dinner to tear into all of those. It must have been TORTURE!!! ;)

Sweeeet baby.

Somehow, we managed to break the ancient Nintendo out....

...and quickly discovered that the Duck Hunt gun doesn't work with modern technology. The TV wouldn't pick it up!

We switched to Super Mario Brothers, which worked JUST fine! It was so funny reliving those memories!

On Christmas morning Mark and I got up and opened gifts with each other and Motley. She got a new beaver toy, some bones, and a pretty new necklace! Mark has complained all year about her obnoxious sparkly pink collar, so we traded it out for reflective orange and silver with a bone motif and a blue flower. I think it's lovely!

I managed to skip over all of Christmas day and Thursday, but it was a great time spent with Mark's family and then shopping and friend time on Thursday!

I went early Friday to the eye doctor to hear the fate of my eyes...I started having trouble with my contacts back in April and after a misdiagnosis from the Target doctor (I had no insurance at the time), I found out in August that I was allergic to my contacts. UGH! So almost 6 full months later and after wearing glasses 100% of the time, I was given permission to get back into contacts!!! My eyes haven't fully healed, but they might never get better. As long as these new contacts don't bug me, I'm free to get back to glasses-free life. AND I GET TO WEAR SUNGLASSES!!!! (Imagine living on the surface of the sun without sunglasses - that's summer in Texas without sunglasses, it was miserable!)

I planned a surprise dinner for Mark's birthday on Friday night since all of his high school friends are in town for the holidays. As I was cleaning the bathroom, I put something away in the medicine cabinet above the sink in our main bathroom and Mark's cologne came barreling down towards the sink. Despite my best efforts to catch it, it hit the sink at an angle and managed to make a GIANT crack in the sink, which turned into a giant hole when Mark 'gently' touched it. Don't worry, the cologne bottle is fine. hmph.

We headed to dinner later that night and SURPRISE, Mark's friends were already there. We had a great time eating and then came back to our house to catch up more!

Mark's parents passed down their fire pit so we made a sad attempt at a bonfire. It was warm for a few minutes! Overall, I think Mark had a great time visiting with his friends, and we were glad to have them!

Saturday was spent in the Grapevine area at my sister's sister-in-law's wedding. Our family is kind of a huge web and we love it and we had a great time at her wedding catching up with friends and family.

After the wedding we drove back to my parent's house and gave my mom her birthday present (unlucky birthday!).

Sunday we went to my aunt's home in Fort Worth for a Bennett family Christmas with my dad's side of the family. Here is a smattering of cousins and spouses, many of which were missing! It is always a good time with the Bennett family!

I hope you all got to spend time with your families over the holidays as well! Stay safe tonight and Happy New Year!!!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas 2013: gift recap

I hope everyone reading had a merry Christmas or some time off well spent with your families! 

Mark had all week off and I had to work only Monday, so we have been soaking up lots of time together and with our families, who both live close enough for day trips. We spent Christmas eve with my family in Arlington and had a yummy dinner of beef tenderloin and sides prepared by the women (me, my mom, and my sister). Wednesday we headed up to McKinney for Christmas with Mark's side of the family. We spent all day opening gifts, talking, napping (some of us) and then ended the evening with a delicious traditional turkey meal.

Since then, we've split our time between dinner with friends, surprise birthday dinners for Mark, family weddings, and my extended family Christmas on Sunday. All of the time off has been great, but it goes by so fast when we are so busy! I'm crossing my fingers for a somewhat slow week this week before we start going back to our normal lives. I'll be back later this week to blog more about the time off... 

First, I wanted to share the spoils of my holiday! Here are a few favorite gifts I received:

The elves paid attention this year and went to 'my wish list' board on Pinterest. Best idea I've ever had! ;)

Mark got me this cast metal jewelry tree (in gold, not finding it online) from West Elm. I've been asking for something of the sort for YEARS!

I have recently gotten more into wearing necklaces (I'm weird and not much of a jewelry person) and pined over the popular J. Crew necklaces for most of last year. My mom and sister each got me a necklace from my Pinterest. Not finding them there or online anymore, but they were from J. Crew Factory and I've already worn them both twice! :) Here is one that I wore at Stephanie's wedding on Saturday.

Mark's sister Andrea got me this cute burlap pillow with our name and wedding year on it. Love!

Mark got me the two bowls above from anthropologie for some added flair in our new kitchen. I just love little things like that!

Mark's mom put together a fun little gift basket that included this sweet owl mug from anthropologie. You can never have too many mugs, especially when they are this cute! ;)

Those are just a few fun things that I received. What did you get for Christmas?

Happy Monday! :)

Monday, December 23, 2013

Our new kitchen!

Other than wishing a happy 27th birthday to my husband Mark, I'll cut right to the chase today, people!

When we left off, we were here:

UPDATE:  Here is a REAL flashback to just four months ago when we bought the house:

And now, four weeks later (half of which were spent on the rug which must not be named), we're HERE!!!! :

I am LOVING the new kitchen. As soon as we started bringing in the counter tops and putting the tile on the walls, I became super giddy. I have had so much fun moving things around and decorating the new and improved space!

So, we spent half of the last four weeks waiting on 'the rug' that I had ordered towards the end of the kitchen renovation. Bad timing on my part since the 'icemaggedon' hit directly after I ordered said rug and it ended up taking 15 days to arrive. Plus, now that it's here, I'm not sure it's any better than the previous rug!

Here are the two rugs, I want your vote! Tell me which one I should keep in the kitchen:

Should I keep this old rag rug that gives it sort of an Anthropologie vibe?

...Or should I continue my love of stripes with this black and white rug that lends itself more to the East Coast casual vibe?

(it has been rainy for a while so the images with the black and white rug are more yellow due to the fake lighting...please don't hold that against the rug or these photos!)

And of course, here are some more photos of my new favorite place in the house:

Taking on this project was stressful and tiresome, but I'm incredibly proud of Mark and I for doing it so quickly and without any major breakdowns. We had the help of Mark's dad Ian and I couldn't thank him enough for the knowledge and elbow grease he's contributed just so I can have a pretty kitchen.

I'll be doing a price and project breakdown here later to let you know how we did it and how much it cost. But for now, we have a beautiful kitchen. Except for this eyesore below...her time here is quickly coming to an end!

Merry Christmas to everyone!


One more thing! Please be sure to check out my Etsy shop! I've added lots of things, tweaked some things, and lowered prices on many of my handmade custom items. I hope you can find something you like and I always welcome your feedback. Thanks so much!!!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Kitchen renovation...

In just over two weeks, our kitchen has gone from this....

...to something way more pretty and awesome!

Come back on Monday for the full kitchen renovation reveal!!! 


Happy Friday!

Thursday, December 19, 2013


Just in case you didn't see the update on Facebook and Instagram, I posted evidence of the elusive kitchen rug that is holding up the reveal:

It has taken 14 days for this rug to be delivered which is exactly how long it took to rip out and put my kitchen back together. Oh, the irony...

Anyway, unless UPS is lying, that beautiful rug SHOULD be delivered today! I'll try and get some photos up ASAP!