Going Coastal.com

I mentioned I lost my glasses a couple weeks ago dancing it up at Ladies 80’s night (worth it).

Even with my insurance, I’ve noticed that the cost of getting glasses has been getting astronomical.  I was interested in trying one of the online glasses sites: Warby Parker, EyeFly or Coastal.  I asked the people of Facebook if they had any experience and heard bad things about EyeFly and good things about Warby.

I heard nothing about Coastal, but I liked their selection, loved their prices and decided to go for it.

And I’m so happy I did!

With the awesome prices, I decided to get two pairs.  One pair that is traditionally like what I have worn in the past, and one pair of trendier, hipster-ish frames.

Here is the reliable pair…

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They are a medium to dark purple on the outside with pink on the inside.  They look great, feel great on and I’m happy to have purple glasses again!  I had a pair a few years ago and purple works for me.

 

Here is the trendier pair…

Me wearing them in Anthro while trying on scarves and headbands.

Me wearing them in Anthro while trying on scarves and headbands.

Me wearing them while i'm writing this post.

Me wearing them while i’m writing this post.

They’re black, from the Alyssa Milano collection (which I thought was fun), and a little larger than I’m used to wearing, but I’m happy with the new look.

I would absolutely recommend Coastal! My glasses were here in 3 days, great prices, solid cases came with each pair, and you can’t beat the price!

Girls day out

I woke up when I felt like it and laid in bed petting the cats for a while.

I made a delicious breakfast of duck and pork sausage, tomatoes, potatoes, eggs and Boursin cheese.

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My pal Kristy came to play! We went to the flea market where I found the bench I was looking for (pics tomorrow).  We went to the big outdoor mall, Easton, to pick up my Sephora birthday present, and went to Costco to load up on paper towels.   We also stopped by Anthropologie where I had to stop myself from walking out with these new treasures:

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I loooved the sparkly headband and scarf.  Alas, I don’t need either of them.  When does one wear a sparkly headband?

Kristy picked up an adorable birthday treat for me while we were there…

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It’s so me, and so perfect! Thanks, KM!

We dashed back to my house to change for girls night dinner out at Barcelona, a tapas restaurant in German Village. 

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Dinner was excellent! Cheese and tapas and paella and sangria… Of which I got the lion’s share since Kristy had to drive all the way back home.   Delish!

Thanks to KM for perfect early birthday celebration!

Big time

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I was the keynote speaker for a group this past Thursday.  They rented a nearby movie theater and this was the largest my presentation has ever been.  It was awesome for a presentation nerd like me. 

The presentation went really well and I was in a great mood when I joined my alumni gathering  a couple hours later.  Several of my classmates were there, some grads from other classes, and I was invited to speak at new class orientation on the alumni panel!! I knew I wanted to do this since my own program orientation.

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The good times continued Friday night.  I met some co-workers for dinner at a new burger place after work and then we headed to the Craft Beer Festival.  20 Breweries were giving samples and I was ready to find my new favorite local beer. 

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Oktoberfest beers were abundant and there were several stouts that were perfect on the chilly evening.  Breweries from all over Ohio were here, including one I loved from the Medina area.  I had been to Lagerheads once with D and had one of the greatest pumpkin beers of all times.   Sadly, that was not one of their offerings last night, but the stout was delicious.

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We stayed until about 10, drinking and talking about the organization changes coming to our department.  There might be some really amazing opportunities coming up for me.  Enterprise wide change management work as Nationwide rebrands and restructures.  It’s exactly the work I had in mind when going back to school.  More on that when I know more. 

Now time to get some chores dine before enjoying girls day: vintage flea markets and tapas dinner!

A: Ladies 80’s night & Bachelorette Parties

Q: Where to not take pictures so there is no proof later?

I’m on a roll, friends.  A Birthday Month, no holds barred, maybe more events than I can handle roll.

This group of 6 consultants that I hang out with occasionally (and have over for dinner and Wii dancing) found out about “Ladies 80’s” night at a local bar.  It is exactly what it sounds like – a ladies night with all 80’s music for dancing the night away.  They invited the whole program team, and since I enjoy the group and have a tiny, little, innocent crush on one of them, I was sure to go.  I invited my favorite co-worker, three or four other project team members showed up and we had an absolute blast last Thursday night.  I drank a tad too much vodka (read: much too much. Luckily, the worst thing I did that night is lose my glasses.  I’m sure I was a dance floor maniac, but no one seems to care.  We had a super fun time.

So much fun that I missed my flight the next morning… I was headed to Florida for a bachelorette weekend.  I had a 7:10am flight.  I got home at 3am from Ladies 80’s night.  One could probably see this coming.  I had two alarms set for that morning, was all packed…to no avail.  I bolted up in bed at 7am, looked at the clock, texted the bride telling her I’d be on a later flight due to “flight issues” (I told her the truth once I was there in person) and called the airline to see what my options were.  Luckily, Southwest Airlines rules all and as long as I got to the airport within 2 hours of my original departure time they would put me on standby flights to get there.  I missed the beautiful non-stop from Columbus to Orlando, so I don’t land in Florida until 2pm.  But, the only thing I missed out on was going to the new Harry Potter World which will be there next time.  And, it might have been worth it to party the night before with the gang.

We had a big beach house in New Smyrna, FL for the weekend and had a really nice weekend.  Again, I have no pictures of this.  10 girls, so many bottles of liquor, wine and beer, dance parties, laying on the beach, Cards Against Humanity, dancing at a townie bar and ice cream sundaes.  There is the weekend in a nutshell.  I got home late Sunday evening and charged into the week ahead.  I had a happy hour with a woman I’m becoming friendly with Monday night.  She and her husband are some of my new favorite Columbus-ites and it was nice to hang out with her for a while.  It was beautiful Monday night here so I went for a walk in the Short North neighborhood after that.  (Amazing how functional I am after an actual happy “hour” with one drink.)

This afternoon I got home a little early (I start early on Tuesday mornings because of my calls with India.  Yup – I’m international.)  I went for a run and then whipped up a new Sweet Potato recipe for a Pinterest Party!  I have gotten into Meetup.com lately and joined a home cooks/bakers group.  Tonight was my first event with them and the theme was to bring a dish that you’ve had pinned but have never made.  It was such a good idea!  I thought I’d take the opportunity to test out a potential Thanksgiving Side dish recipe – Mashed sweet potatoes with kale and boursin cheese.

Photo from A Family Feast blog

Photo from A Family Feast blog

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I was happy to see so many savory dishes – including an awesome roasted zucchini pasta salad, cuban sliders and a watermelon mint salad. Dessert highlight was the creme brulee cheesecake!

This is the best potluck in town!

There were about 18 people and everyone was super nice.  It was a really nice evening.

Non stop fun continues this week with an alumni event on Thursday, the Craft Beer Festival on Friday night, my friend Kristy coming to visit Saturday for this vintage flea market and an early birthday dinner, and a Soup Cooking Class/demo on Sunday!

content Sarah and the finished wall!

content Sarah and the finished wall!

Cat and door in the picture for size context.

Cat and door in the picture for size context.

Birthday month, days 2 and 3

Day 2 starts with an email from my pal, the head of the largest change management research and methodology company, with a draft of the book chapter I contributed the case study to.  He asks me to review and make sure they captured my work correctly.  You got it. 

Then, I get a last minute hair appointment for a haircut (just a trim before bachelorette weekend madness in FL).  Typically I have to book at least a month out.   That’s good luck. 

Then I decide to make one last adjustment to my bedroom.  All the blank walls were just staring at me.  And I like to write on walls.   And I wanted to draw on mine.   So I did, but in a controlled, grown up way.   I brought a projector home from work and put my favorite quote on the wall.   It was easier to paint inside the lines than to freehand it.   Having the projector at home was kind of fun.   I got such a late start on this project or else I would have set up and watched a movie. 

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Projector all set up!

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Projecting on the wall. Trying to make font decisions, which are the hardest decisions.

The quote is my favorite.  It is a Van Gogh quote: I know nothing with any certainty but the sight of stars makes me dream. 

I translate it as, I’m not always sure what I’m doing, but I’m hopeful.  I am a girl who still makes a wish on the first star I see each night.   I almost always do the little nursery rhyme with it too, Star light, star bright…

I’ll leave you in suspense for another day until I take a picture of the finished product.  Which font did she choose?! 

Day 3 started with a great meeting downtown and then a fine day at work with the program team.   And I’m about to head into my first committee meeting for the national change management association.  Which is nerdy to most, but exciting to me.  It’s the next step in my professional world domination. 

Birthday month is here and it’s off to a great start!

Photo on 9-1-14 at 8.23 PM #2

Exhibit A – my complete task list!

I love my birthday.  And I celebrate all month long!  September 1 comes around and every good thing that happens becomes part of birthday month surprises and celebrations.

Today really was a pretty good day.

I finally got to this Zumba class that more than one person had told me was the best class in Columbus.  This class was huge.  Probably 120 people and it was like being in the club.  It was dark, there were disco ball and club lights.  Randomly people from the audience got up on the stage and “werked it” (I use quotations because I am assured this is what it is called – not because I would ever call it that) with the instructors.  I don’t know if that’s prearranged or they just feel the spirit inside of them.  Regardless, it was a workout, it was dancing, it was fun!

I got cleaned up and then met my mom’s cousin and her husband for a late lunch.  They are a super fun couple and it’s nice to see family, albeit family that is a first cousin once removed.  They live about 40 minutes north of Columbus and we chatted for a couple hours.  I won’t let so long go by before hanging out with them again.  At the end of lunch, my cousin was making a list of men he thought he could fix me up with.  I’m not quite ready for all of that, but that didn’t prevent him from texting me pictures of some of his top contenders.  :)

I made a stop at TJ Maxx and Target to look for a lamp for the bedroom, which I did not find.  I did find the PERFECT curtains, a couple throw pillows and the curtain rods for my bedroom.  I didn’t get much of that room put back together yesterday, so came home to get it done so I could stop sleeping in the guest room and get back to my new grown up bedroom.  The curtains and curtains rods were an awesome find.  It was destiny.  The curtain rods were a clearance item, marked down to $18 a piece!  That’s a steal.  The curtains are the exact cream color as the wall, have just a little shimmer, and are really long which means they pool just a little on the floor, which I think looks kind of elegant.

I came home, installed curtain rods, hung the curtains, vacuumed the carpet, moved all the furniture back in, dusted, vacuumed some more, made the bed and set up a few accessories.

I am soooooo happy with it.  It’s the feminine look I wanted, clean, good contrast with my espresso dressers and feels like an (almost) 35 year old woman lives in it.

Classy.

Classy.

Feminine.

Feminine. (maybe I should have turned off the tv.)

Oh, and see that mirror?  Same mirror I had before – here’s a reminder pic…

I know.  It's so messy.  Not anymore!

I know. It’s so messy. Not anymore!

I painted the mirror frame.  Annie Sloan Old White paint that I had leftover from the kitchen cabinets.

Mirror transformed.

Mirror transformed.

And now I'm here lounging.

And now I’m here lounging.

I need to find a way to do everything from this room.

Other awesome birthday month stuff:

I learned my car has automatic windshield wipers today – like they sense rain on the windshield and just start.  I did not know I had this feature and it’s awesome.

The Unofficial Saved By The Bell movie is on Lifetime starting right now.  Signing off to sit in my pretty new room and watch.  Because that’s what classy almost 35 year olds do.

The punch list

If you’re tired of hearing about my house projects, stop reading now. 

Yesterday I started the final significant home project of 2014. I needed to paint my bedroom in the worst way.  I have paid almost no attention to it since moving in, outside of buying a big, pretty bed. 
As of yesterday at 2pm, this is what my bedroom looked like:

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Yes.  I’m messy.  
But a lot of this mess was created as I was trying to move out the furniture and consolidate some other stuff.   Something to note in the top photo is that the closet door is open.  It has all the scarves hanging on it.  That door had never been shut.  Look for that in the after photo.  I also had this plastic dresser that used to go in my STL closet.  I keep pajamas and underwear in it.   It doesn’t fit in this closet so I’ve just left it there, but my classy grown up bedroom is not going to have a plastic dresser, so I am moving those items to the tall chest you see.  The laundry sorter under the window will not be coming back into the room either.   One of my most favorite things about the house is the laundry chute.  I mean, I didn’t buy the house for it, but I’ve grown to love it.   Clothes are going to just have to go straight down that from now on.  

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Painting begins.
Here is a better pic of my big, pretty bed.  You can also see the paint swatch there on the wall.   I’ve had that there for weeks.  Sure this was the color.   I nearly second guessed myself back at Lowe’s, but stayed true.   Because the bed has a champagne hue to it, I thought a more standard of white would look gray next to it.   I was trying to find a paint color that seemed like candlelight.  I thought I had.  

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It started off strong…

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Just enough tint to not be white, but be warm instead.  I want a very Monochromatic look in the room and I think I achieved it…

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But the later it got, the more the light bulb was the only light in the room, the yellower and less sophisticated it started to look.

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And yes, I’m clearly watching Community throughout this project.  That show is amazing. 

I finished the trim work and went to sleep in the guest room, hoping it would look better in the morning. 

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It does.   And see that closet door shut! Whoa! I didn’t even know it could do that.  

Now to reassemble the room and add some decor touches.  

Which brings me to the massive punch list I’ve been making over breakfast. 

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I’ve finished several rooms, and left some lite tasks in each one.   Time to wrap them all up today, and start enjoying the house tomorrow!