Tag Archives: apartment decorating

Take a Turn About the Room, Part II

Good morning!  TGIF!  I completed a Full Throttle Endurance team swim workout this morning before our head coach held an informal clinic on how to change a flat tire/tube.  I sort of know how to do it, but I don’t exactly feel confident; it’s definitely a process you need to practice, so our head coach suggested the following:  “Go home, pour yourself a glass of wine, and practice.”  Why didn’t I think of adding vino to the equation before?  If there’s wine involved, then count me in!

Anyway, I promised another “tour” of my apartment since my mom and dad helped me find some big-girl apartment birthday décor.  I enlisted my parents because first, I don’t trust myself when it comes to home decoration; college posters aren’t exactly appropriate anymore, and the limited experience I do have equated to an area rug searching and purchasing nightmare.  Second—which shouldn’t surprise anyone—I don’t have tools in my apartment like a hammer, nails, etc.  But I do have a foam roller and bike pump, so it all evens out, right?  We found everything at Bed Bath & Beyond, except the clock, which came from TJ Maxx.  Let’s take a turn about the room!

First, we hung a mirror in the entryway. (And by “we,” I mean my mom and dad.)


It adds some depth to the area, and it lets me do a quick teeth/hair/makeup check before leaving.


In fact, I used this mirror when I took a picture of my new haircut. (Not that you can tell, but still.)


To the right of the entryway sits the dining table/work center, and we placed a clock up above.


It’s been temperamental at times—its hands stop on 7:20—but it looks really nice.


Although I might have to buy a new one if its hands continue to refuse to work.


Next up is the most important piece:  This painting hangs above the couch and essentially connects the central theme of the room. (Although my original idea was to hang my bike there!)


Perfect size and perfect color scheme—what a clutch find!



Between the windows sits this unique metal piece.


Again, perfect size and colors.


Finally, we found two flower paintings for my bedroom.


Very pretty, right?


So that’s what I have so far.  I still want to get a few more pieces, but my apartment feels much more homey now.

What was your favorite room/area to decorate in your home/apartment?  Did you decorate it immediately after moving in, or did you wait and buy one item at a time?

Write It Down, Do It Up – Week of Feb. 3

Happy Beyoncé concert Super Bowl Sunday, friends!  How’s your weekend been so far?  I had so much fun with my family, and we had a productive few days, too; our main project was finding some apartment décor, which ended up being a perfect early birthday present.  Check it out!


I think a Take a Turn About the Room, Part Two is in order, yes?  We bought and hung everything up Saturday afternoon, and this morning, I did the Gridiron 4-miler run in Central Park.


Recap coming your way tomorrow!

Speaking of Monday, Full Throttle Endurance officially moves into phase two of this training cycle, which means the intensity will pick up.  In fact, Andrew sent an email Friday night with our team workouts, and Friday’s swim includes a 200-yd. time trial—yikes!  Time for Write It Down, Do It Up!

(If you’re new to WIDDIU, here’s how it works:  Every Sunday evening, I post my workout schedule for the week, and I invite you to do the same.  This way, we can motivate each other and hold ourselves accountable.  Sounds like a win-win, right?)

Monday – a.m. run with Full Throttle Endurance (FTE); a.m. swim

Tuesday – a.m. run and strength train

Wednesday – a.m. bike with FTE; a.m. run; maybe swim?

Thursday – a.m. yoga

Friday – a.m. swim with FTE; a.m. run

Saturday – off

Sunday – bike and strength train

Did you complete a Super Bowl Sunday workout or take the day off?  What are your workout/fitness goals for February?

An OCD Moment and Dinner at Penelope

Hi!  Happy Hump Day!  How’s your week coming along?  I have some good news to share on the apartment décor front—my area rug arrived yesterday!

This looks innocent enough, but upon closer examination, you’ll see this setup simply will not do.

Cue a frantic OCD reaction.

My inner perfectionist could not deal with the rug-rug pad nonalignment, so I spent a good 30 minutes fixing the non-slip pad, unrolling and rerolling the rug, and obsessively adjusting it.  I couldn’t figure out why I was struggling so much, but I realized the rug pad measured one foot longer than the area rug, which was why things weren’t matching up.  Where there’s a will, there’s a way, and the labor was totally worth it.



Last night, I made plans to meet up with my friend Sara for dinner at Penelope.  Sara and I go way back—we embarked on our Writing and Rhetoric Honors projects together, and we ran the Boilermaker 15-K this summer—so it was great catching up with her over a great meal.

Situated in Murray Hill, Penelope boasts a “refreshing twist on mom’s recipes.”  Ready to whet your whistle?

Did you spot the “seasonal sangria” on the board?  Once in our booth, Sara and I ordered two glasses of the harvest sangria, which contained apples, pears, and blueberries. (Sorry about the bad iPhone photos.)

For my meal, I went with “When Veggie Met Sally”—chopped greens with grilled veggie burger and green apple. (It also came with goat cheese, but I ordered it without.)

Whoops, such a fail; this picture doesn’t do it justice.  The fare was delicious, and it was great catching up with Sara.  Can’t wait to do it again!


Although I had an a.m. bike ride on the docket, rain and wind prompt me to postpone, so I ate my morning meal shortly after waking up.

Whole Foods didn’t have my standard Kashi waffles, so I picked up a box of Van’s Power Grains.  They definitely tasted grainy-er, and I topped them with almond butter and banana slices.

Time to start the day—have a good one, friends!

Take a Turn About the Room

Happy Tuesday, all!  Did you have a nice Columbus Day?  I spent my Monday running a ton of apartment-related errands, and finally, I have some pictures to share!  Welcome, and let us take a turn about the room. (Caroline Bingley from Pride and Prejudice, anyone?) First, let’s start with the entrance.

The kitchen is to the left, bathroom and closets to the right, and the dining/living area straight ahead.  I’m totally in love with the kitchen—very modern.

(Go Yankees!)

And I’m really pleased with how the bathroom turned out.

Alrighty, onto the dining/living area.

This section needs some work.  I’m still waiting for a floor rug to arrive, and I also need to track down end tables and wall décor; it feels comfortable, but not yet homey, know what I mean?  Last but not least, my bedroom.

Like the dining/living area, I need to spruce up this room, too.  Although I did manage to put together a bag rack.

And my bike adds some character to the room.

Much like my triathlon swim, my apartment is still a work in progress–ha!  But working toward improvement, whether it’s in the open-water or in your home, makes the process more rewarding and worthwhile.  At least that’s what I tell myself when I’m making my third trip in two days to Bed Bath and Beyond.

Do you live in a house, apartment, or condo?  What’s your favorite room?  What are some of your favorite home goods stores?

Write It Down, Do It Up – Week of Sept. 30

Wait, how is tomorrow October 1?  September sure flew by!  And so did this weekend.  Yesterday, my mom and I shopped for more NYC apartment staples.  I almost bought this mug; it screams Fitness and Frozen Grapes.

In all seriousness, though, I found my bedding set; it’s a purple duvet, and it looks much prettier out of the packaging.

My family and I went to my cousin’s football game last night, and after a bike ride this morning, I did some baking.

Protein-packed pumpkin bread—yum-ola.  Recipe coming soon!

Anyway, onto this week’s workouts.  Since I’m moving into my big-girl apartment in less than one week—yikes!—I’m banking my rest days for Saturday and Sunday.  It’s sad to think this will be my last few times biking and running around my tiny town until Thanksgiving, but I’m more than ready to hit the big city.  It’s time for Write It Down, Do It Up!

(If you’re new to WIDDIU, here’s how it works:  Every Sunday evening, I’ll post my workout schedule for the week, and I invite you to do the same.  This way, we can motivate each other and hold ourselves accountable.  Sounds like a win-win, right?)

Monday – 30-minute run; strength training

Tuesday – 60-minute bike

Wednesday – 45-minute run; strength training

Thursday – bike (I’m riding with MB, and she’s planning the route.)

Friday – 50-minute run; strength training

Saturday – off

Sunday – off

What are your October fitness goals?

Link Love and Furniture Shopping for New York City, Take Two

Because one spree isn’t enough.

Hey, friends—Happy Friday!  Do you have plans for the weekend?  It’s been raining all afternoon, so it’s going to be a low-key evening.  Tomorrow, though, the fam is going to my cousin’s football game.  I haven’t been to a high school football game in … well, since high school.  Funny how that works.

Yesterday afternoon, I got some serious link love from my friends at Chelsea Piers and Full Throttle Endurance.  We’re talking two social media outlets—Facebook and Twitter.

So cool!

Did you miss the recap of FTE’s swim practice at Chelsea Piers?

Unfortunately, these screenshots were the sole pictures I snapped yesterday.  For lunch, I had more healthy curried chicken salad, which tasted even better leftover; we also had our neighbors over for drinks and hors d’oeuvres, which also went undocumented.  Whoops.  Just picture lots of red wine, cheese and crackers, veggies and dip, plus some tasty finger sandwiches.  No dinner after was required thanks to the copious amount of cheese I ate.

Workout – Running

This morning, I “slept in” and answered some emails before tackling a 7.25-mile run.  For me, this qualifies as a semi-long run, although I know my marathon-training friends would say different. (One day!) Even though it was lightly misting, I still had a great, low-key outing, minus my iPod shuffle dying about 15 minutes in. (I even charged it last night—what the heck!) “Running naked” ended up being a nice treat, and I also left my compression sleeves at home.  The eight-mile threshold is usually when my calves crave compression, but I was still pleasantly surprised there were no tightening issues.  Woohoo!


We go through a lot of peanut butter, which works out perfectly for an overnight-oats-in-a-jar addict like me.

This morning’s mix included one mashed banana, plain Greek yogurt, 1/4 cup old fashioned oats, 1/2 cup almond milk, and plenty of chia seeds.


Before heading to Raymour & Flanigan for furniture shopping round two, I made a veggie scramble.

With a one-egg and one-egg-white base, I added leftover roasted asparagus and red peppers, plus some tofu for extra protein. (Plus Sriracha, obviously!) I also ate a few handfuls of grapes.

Onto some good news:  Guess who has big-girl furniture for her big-girl apartment?

This girl!  I ended up going with the sofa sleeper, accent chair, and ottoman.

This area rug. (And the blurry dining set.)

And a dresser and nightstand I totally forgot to take a picture of, probably because I was so excited!

Also, on a completely unrelated note, I found out today I won a GNC Twitter giveaway.

All I had to do was click “retweet,” so I figured what the heck.

Wow!  First the #RunChat prize package and now a Total Lean Pumpkin Spice Shake?  Heck, maybe I should go buy a lottery ticket.

Have you ever won a prize or giveaway (either virtual or in “real life”)?

Shopping for Apartment Necessities

Hey, everyone!  Just popping in quickly to share today’s eats and adventures—it was another busy day over here.

After eating a two-ingredient pancake for breakfast, my mom and I headed to Barnes & Noble, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Target for big-girl apartment necessities.  Well, our stop at B&N didn’t involve home goods; I wanted to pick up the books for Jamie’s virtual book club!

For November, we’re reading The Courage to Start:  A Guide to Running for Your Life by John “The Penguin” Bingham; we’re taking December off because of the holidays, and January’s book is You Are an Ironman by Jacques Steinberg.  Both look like great reads, so I’m excited to dig in.  I also picked up a copy of What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami. (And, a Starbucks soy latte.  They are addicting!)

I first spotted this memoir in The Strand during my not one, but two-part adventure to New York City.  When I brought the books to the checkout, the cashier asked if I was planning to do an Ironman.  Thanks for the compliment, but I think I need to complete a 70.3 first. (Maybe in 2014?) Also, for fellow Downton Abbey fans, I nearly died when I saw this cookbook.

After B&N, my mom and I went to Bed Bath & Beyond to look at bedspreads and dining sets.  For now, we’re just browsing, and we would like to purchase bedding and plates, bowls, etc. before the move; bringing bulkier and heavier items to the city would be easier than buying them there and lugging them from the store to my apartment.  Anyway, I really liked these plates, but the pattern might be a distraction in food photos—what do you think?

I have to think like a blogger now, right?  However, I really like pairing patterned cups and bowls with solid plates.

We’ll see.  I also found two bedding options.  The first was set up in the store, which took the guesswork out of picturing the entire set.

The second choice was unfortunately in a plastic bag.

But it’s called “Chelsea Paisley”—that has to be a sign, right?  Finally, we went to Target and bought a toaster, crock pot, and handheld blender; pretty standard appliances, so no pictures.

When we arrived home, I used a ton of leftovers to make an egg scramble.

In addition to a two-egg base, I tossed in roasted zucchini, a handful of tofu cubes, and fresh green pepper slices.  I rounded out my meal with a slice of Ezekiel bread slathered with almond butter.  Breakfast for lunch never fails.

While I snacked on an apple, I made some apple cinnamon spice chips.

Although their texture isn’t exactly chip-y, these good-for-you slices were tasty; I’ll share the recipe tomorrow!  And now, I’m off to give my healthy curried chicken salad recipe another shot.  Fingers crossed it’s sharable this time!

Fall face-off:  Do you prefer apple or pumpkin?  I’m trying to get myself to appreciate pumpkin, and I love anything apple-flavored.

Furniture Shopping for New York City

Hello!  I just got home from furniture shopping—well, more like previewing—for my big-girl apartment in New York City. (You can read about the two-part adventure here and here.) Since Raymour & Flanigan has stores in the city, my parents and I decided to shop for furniture here in Central New York and then have it delivered to my apartment.  Before sharing some of my favorite pieces, let’s zip through a few eats.


Last night, we had baked organic and local free-range chicken with roasted broccoli, zucchini, and red peppers.

It was OK (you know how I feel about chicken), and I plan to repurpose and jazz up the leftovers for tonight’s meal.  If my creative juices prove successful, I might have a blog-worthy recipe to share tomorrow.


I woke up wanting bananas and PB, so I didn’t have to think outside the box for today’s morning meal.

Two Kashi waffles with PB and banana slices hit the spot.


Before heading to Raymour & Flanigan with my mom, I had a bowl of quick ravioli and spinach soup.

Plus apple slices with PB for dessert.

Shopping fuel came in the form of a Starbucks soy latte.

As my first-ever soy latte, this drink gets two thumbs up.  It was sweeter than I expected, and my mom told me the barista used vanilla soymilk.  I’m used to unsweetened almond milk, so that explains the surge of sweetness.  Does Starbucks usually use vanilla soymilk?  Just curious.

Anyway, time for the fun stuff—furniture shopping!

My mom and I hit up Raymour & Flanigan this afternoon.  Our main priorities today included a sleeper sofa and area rug; we also briefly looked at three-piece dining sets, and we still need to do some searching on the dresser and nightstand side of things.  Here’s sleeper soft option one.

And option two.

I love the color scheme and print of the second choice; it’s definitely my front-runner so far.  Plus, there’s a really cute matching chair.


In terms of the area rugs, these three jumped out.

(The weird lighting and my iPhone skewed the colors a bit.)

I’m a fan of the third option.  In fact, Henre, the salesperson we worked with, said it used to be on display with the sleeper sofa option two.  Coincidence?  We’re also leaning toward this dining set.

(So blurry–sorry!)

With its two drop leaves, the table can be made smaller to save space; or, like in the picture, one leaf can drop, so the table can go up against a wall.  Next, we briefly looked at mattresses.

I liked this firmness, and I’m still debating which size (full or queen) to get.

What are some of your favorite furniture or home goods stores?  How did you go about selecting pieces and designing a space?