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Saturday, February 23rd, 2008

Cutting a Rug

car.JPGThe carpet came, I hardly believed my eyes when I saw the boxes today. Of course, we’re still one tile short but that was to be expected. It was a problem easily taken care of though. We placed the order through Home on the Harbor a local home furnishings store. Everyone is talking about buying local but there is so much to be said for it. Our experience with Home on the Harbor was wonderful. Before we even had a chance to figure out how to solve our missing tile conundrum, we got a call from the store to check on our order, Ben explained the problem and a new tile was at our door in a couple of days. How easy is that? Not to mention that the store has great stuff, the people are nice and they let me take home their carpet samples so I could see how they’d look in our space before I placed the order.

So far it looks fab and the pieces were as easy to cut as promised. It’s great because in the configuration that I picked we have a 4×10 area rug which is an off size but fits our space perfectly. The Flor is way better than the Legato we put down in the basement plus they have all these green initiatives and I supported a local business at the same time. So far so good, now we just have to see how easy it will be to clean. The picture and instructions in the catalog are ridiculously simple and I refuse to believe that it could be that easy. Sure, you just pick up the tile and wash it in the sink, but they don’t show a picture of the part where you lift the end in the sink up and the water run out the other end and onto your socks. You can see the new wall color in the picture too.

I feel pretty good about the way things are coming together here decorating-wise. I have never had a good ‘aesthetic.’ I remember in college when I got my first apartment like housing assignment and my ex-roommate lived in the apartment next door. I liked what she did to her place so much that I ended up buying a lot of the same things she did. I cut myself some slack because ultimately where else to take inspiration from but it would have been better if it had been a magazine and the point remains, I’ve always wanted my space to feel homey and stylish in an effortless sort of way and have never found that to be an easy look to achieve. I’m sticking with my tried and true George Costanza method of doing the opposite of what I would ordinarily or instinctively do and so far so good. I faltered upstairs and have a lot of crayon box sort of colors that I love but wanted to avoid. In the end I think that it’s ok because those are the private spaces and they don’t break up the overall cohesiveness of the rest of the house.

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I finished the gift for the little boy. What a wonderful and simple little project. I am really happy with the way it turned out. Before assembling the apron I stenciled his initial on with Jacquard textile paint. I’ve never worked with this kind of fabric paint before but it was easy enough. You just paint it on, let it dry and heat set it with an iron. I printed the letter S out on cardstock and cut it out with an X-acto knife. The paint bled a little so I decided to put a blanket stitch around the edge to hide it. I used a little bit of yellow yarn and an embroidery needle. I hope he likes it or at least that his parents do. There’s Chase in the chef’s hat because she’s much cuter in it than I am :)

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That little car up there on the rug is from the craft expo. We went today and had a good time. I paid $3 for a bottle of Dasani, that was probably the low point everything else was a lot of fun. We coveted looked at a lot of stuff. I took a couple of pictures and some notes. I’d like to do a more thorough post about it but if that doesn’t happen by Sunday then I’ll just throw the pictures up here somewhere. The little car is cool. When you push it down the ramp it does a somersault when it hits the ground and keeps going. Chase was like toy booth, toy booth, stop, stop!! We were good, that’s all we came home with… and the $3 dasani (can you tell I’m still bitter about that?). I was so mad about it that I forewent Starbucks. Now, that says something. I wasn’t spending one cent more in that convention center. The best part? I got a parking spot right across the street AND the meter was broken so I parked for free!

On the way home we stopped at a new-ish thai place. It made me feel all nostalgic for Simply Home and the days when I’d scarf down a whole order of pad thai for lunch and then complain to Erin all afternoon about how I was dying of fullness. The pad thai from Simply Home tasted extra good cause it was free but the food from My Thai was equally delicious when you adjust for the free factor. I can’t remember where I heard about this place but it was definitely worth checking out. They have a really nice space right next to Donna’s in Mount Vernon. That’s not our Donna’s though so there was no conflict. The restaurant space is inviting and the perfect place for date night. The service was great everybody was friendly and accommodating to Chase.

I ordered spring rolls, shrimp pad thai and chicken hot pot. They were all good. Chase at a whole spring roll to herself. I didn’t think she could do it but was apparently wrong. I have never ordered hot pot before and it was good but certainly not what I expected. I thought it would be something sort of brothy… maybe I’ll look it up when I’m done here. It was composed of crispy pieces of fried chicken, lightly steamed red pepper and onions and strewn with fresh thai basil. It was served with rice and sauce served separately and presumably to preserve crispness. The veg were perfectly just crisp enough and the basil really added freshness to the whole dish.

I love good takeout. The pad thai was spicy and delicious with a generous number of big plump shrimp. There’s nothing I hate more than ordering and receiving a dish that appears to be made with krill instead of shrimp. The prices were reasonable and the service was quick. I will definitely try to get back there. I haven’t asked Ben what he thought though he did scarf down the pad thai. I ordered two dishes thinking we would share but he didn’t evidently think that was a good idea. At the end of the day, Ben likes Italian and I like Asian. Fusion anyone?

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