Leaving the corporate world and starting my own business has opened the doors for a lot of interesting conversation about what it is that I actually do all day. Each day is an adventure, and no matter the best laid plan for the day, something can happen that turns your day into a whirlwind.
As hundred year old properties are being renovated all around Kansas City, one of the biggest decision points is whether to keep the roots of the original charm and style of the home or update it to a modern vibe. Ultimately, I decided that one couldn't have complete disregard for the origins of the building. So vintage inspired paint colors became the goal.
I started researching pictures of historic Hyde Park in Kansas City, and (duh) - they were all in black and white, so that didn't get me very far. At the turn of the century, paint companies offered a very limited number of colors, mainly variations of earth tones such as sage, salmon, forest green, cadmium blue, plus off-white tones.
I LOVE AVOCADOS! They should be their own food group. Their versatility. They're delectable. Fresh, raw, fried, or combined in a dish. It doesn't matter. They're simply delicious. So really, why not list the best ways to eat, enjoy, and share avocados with your friends. With a little help from my friends over at Pinterest, I'm sharing my favorites ways to enjoy an avocado!
When you're starting to find contractors to complete a home renovation project, one of the hardest things to judge is making sure that all the contractors are pricing the same work - especially if it's big or complicated. Simple projects are easy, you can generally communicate through gestures, discussions, waves of the hand, and everyone is on the same page. But multifaceted renovation projects cannot be done that way as easily.
The more that you know about your scope, the better product you will get from your contractor because you know exactly what you are asking them to do. Plus, it helps mitigate the fear of a contractor ripping you off. The more educated you appear (even if it is a false front), the better the contractor will do of explaining what they are doing, why, and how much it costs.
My kitchen has long been one of those rooms in my home that I put in the category of "almost complete." When I moved in, it had already been beautifully redone with white headboard cabinets, marble countertops, a farmhouse sink, and wonderful stainless appliances to boot! But, the problem is that it's kind of an awkward size. There isn't truly enough room to put a nice island (not to mention any type of table), yet without something there is just this dead space in the middle. Plus no where to put out food for guests or let a friend sit to talk to you while you cook.
So, my idea for a solution became a kitchen island on wheels. Thus, I could move it into the corner under the window when it became to burdensome, but I have it there for everyday use - because if there was one downside to my beautiful kitchen, it's that it is a little short on counter space.
under the window when it became to burdensome, but I have it there for everyday use - because if there was one downside to my beautiful kitchen, it's that it is a little short on counter space.
So, as some as our friends know, we've been thinking about buying a property to renovate and rent for many years now. But between the one million other things that seem to comprise daily life, we've never found the time (nor the right property) to say yes to. Well, I'm excited to say that we finally found the place!
I couldn't stomach spending $1,500 USD or more on a yoga retreat, so I decided to DIY my own - and it wasn't nearly as hard as you might think!
It's a little more work figuring out the what/where/how of things, but with everything essentially walk able in Ubud, it was a really enjoyable experience. Plus relaxing... holy moly, I was relaxed. I'm hoping that the next person who travels to Bali and tries to DIY their own retreat has a little easier time than I, with the help of this post, because you should enjoy and explore every minute of it.
Buying an open bus ticket is one of the most convenient and budget conscious ways to make your way backpacking from north to south (or visa versa) through Vietnam. Almost any tour agency offers them, but not all companies are equal.
I came back from traveling around the world for 5 months, then one week later, saw a pup online and instantly knew that I needed to meet her. Sure, I’ve always wanted a dog, but there was something about her face that I just knew that we could be there for each other. So, two days later we met, I adopted her on the spot, and the past few weeks have been history. I may be temporarily insane as a “crazy dog lady” – but coming back, adapting to real life, going back to work, adopting a dog – well, it’s kind of a lot. But every moment of it has been worth it.
This year for New Year's, I'm so tempted to make another resolution about losing weight, getting my finances in order, finally running that marathon, painting more, or truly taking up cooking. Instead, my New Year's Resolution is to continue a promise I made myself back in May and live my life on purpose.
I'm giving myself the resolution of letting go. Letting go of all the expectations that people have for me. Letting go of the typical midwestern life that one should have at 28. Letting go of the societal pressures to stick to the mold. Letting go of the things that don’t bring me happiness and contentment.
Onto a city full of adventure with new weather to boot! Time to dig down in that backpack and pull out a jacket. My afternoons were spotted with rain showers, I hope you get luckier than I did.
Arriving in Da Lat after being in the tropics of Southeast Asia is somewhat of a surreal experience. You wind along curvy, narrow, and very steep roads up the mountains until you arrive in the city. At the center of it is a small lake, almost looking like something out of Switzerland or Germany - complete with swan boats! Plus, cool weather! No more sweating from just walking outside - I actually wore pants and a jacket. A first for sure.
Hoi An was one of the most picturesque towns in Vietnam, with charming colorful old buildings, great food, beautiful beaches, and of course shopping. You can spend anywhere from two days to a week and not run out of places to explore. So, rather than sharing a day by day itinerary for this town, I've decided to share my top ten things to do in Hoi An.
When I started traveling north from Ho Chi Minh City, the first stop on most of the "open bus" tickets are in Mui Ne. It's about a 4-5 hour bus ride north of Ho Chi Minh, located along the east coast. A lot of backpackers and other travelers stop here because of the famous sand dunes - which is just one of the sights to take in. Though obviously I agree that the sand dunes are a "must-see" in Mui Ne, there are a few other things worth grabbing your attention.
When flying into Vietnam, there are two major airports - Hanoi in the north and Ho Chi Minh City in the south. Pretty much one of these has to be your starting destination if you're flying in from anywhere but locally. For me, it was Ho Chi Minh City.
Ho Chi Minh City was formerly called Saigon, but was renamed officially after the revolutionary leader Ho Chi Minh, although the name Saigon is still widely used. The city has a rich history, used by the Khmer as a seaport in the 17th century, then under French influence until the mid twentieth century, then became the capital for an independent republic of South Vietnam, but today, still remains the largest city in Vietnam as a whole.
With such a varied history, there is a wide mix of influence that shaped the city, making it worth spending a couple of days here to take in those experiences.
When planning for Siem Reap, I thought that all there really was to see was Angkor Wat. But, boy was I wrong! We were only in Siem Reap for three days, splitting up the third day to take in different sites, but if I could do it again, I would want to see everything that our group saw collectively. That's why I would say spend three full days in Siem Reap. Most of the time because of flights, you'll end up spending two half days and two full days, so here's what I would consider the quickest itinerary where you can see it all (well, still almost, there's always more that you can find).
Honestly, Hong Kong wasn't my first choice in cities to visit. All I knew about it was that it was big and full of skyscrapers. In fact, it is the city with the most skyscrapers in the world (meaning buildings that are over 45 stories tall). It's a big city, full of hustle and bustle, but it's still worth spending three days there to experience the highlights and check out the culture. Here was our itinerary, the highs and the lows.