It is Beginning to Look A Lot Like…..

I am sick and tired of being sick and tired.  Luckily/unluckily I am just starting to feel better while Derek is now best buds  with the Nyquil.  I am on his favorite person list right now obviously….

The whole sick thing caused some blog silence last week since going to bed at 7 was not good for my productivity and I even missed the first week of Kim’s Dare to DIY party.  Sad.

But no worries, I am back (for the most part…excuse my box of Kleenex).

Last year, I decorated our dining room table for Christmas a week early and while I loved it, I swore to myself that this year I would not forget about Thanksgiving and set the table with gourds and the and other fall-y things.

That is until it occurred to me that we were hosting Christmas and not Thanksgiving, so why waste good ideas on a tablescape that no one would use? Right?

So I present you with an early Christmas table for the second year in a row…..


Red does happen to be my favorite color.  Good thing it corresponds with Christmas.





I really wanted a beautiful red tablecloth to cover the entire table.  But a round tablecloth in a size to cover a 75 inch round table is impossible to find in stores.  Trust me on that.  I did find some huge ones online that I may order for future occasions, but that would not have fit the blog party timeline. 

Table runners also are too short for the massive table so I had to improvise.  I bought an oblong tablecloth and kept it folded so it just looked like an extra wide but long enough table runner.


Of course I will have to re-buy the red roses closer to Christmas.  But I will take any excuse to buy myself roses.

And in honor of my new light fixture, i wanted to bring some bling to the table.  I found these mini mirrors at Michael’s for 1.99 for 25.  They made the perfect mirror confetti.


And of course blingy napkin rings….


Head over to the Newly Woodwards and see what everyone else put together!

Ode to Overstock

The UPS/FedEx/mail men were among my favorite people this week.  They just kept bringing boxes of goodies.  Not all the boxes are ready to be revealed, but a couple are unpacked and up and running.

When we last left the dining room ceiling saga, I was stumped with what to do.  And out of my list of options, most of you picked Derek’s option of adding the white edging so that the colors looked more similar.

dining room ceiling fun

Derek would like to thank everyone for voting for him.  He reads the blog, but usually does not mention much about it except “do you want me to take pictures of this while I am doing it?”  But on the day on the dining room post I got a call at work making sure that I was not missing the comments that people were agreeing with him.

So I did it.

And it took awhile.

And again it looked great during the day, but at night it looked even worse.  The white of the crown molding and the white of the ceiling looked like completely different colors even though they were the exact.same.paint. 

Very very frustrating.

So at this point, I knew I had to do something about the light fixture since the yellow globes were the main problem.

I bought some other non-yellow globe options and honestly some of them were OK.  But to replace all the globes was going to cost over $70 and for that amount of money I decided I would rather move that light fixture to another location and get a new one for the dining room.

(I apologize for the lack of pictures of the globes….Derek had the new light fixture installed while I was out with friends and did not realize I had not done it yet.  I couldn’t be upset with him because he was installing a light fixture while I was getting a pedicure,  Guess he made up for the whole everyone liking his idea thing.)

Anyway enter overstock and this beauty.


Love the bling.


And while the space is not a total after yet, the ceiling and light is finally finished.


Even at night…..


My other overstock love landed right outside the dining room in the entryway. 

We have had this rug from our prior house in the entryway since we moved in.  It was not bought for the space and no longer fits the style of our house.  Even Derek agreed we needed something new.


I wanted to keep this size rug however for a couple of reasons.  The floors are orange of course and are really beat up in the entryway.  Also when the dogs are running down the stairs at full speed and hit a bare hard wood floor they go flying and further damage the floor.  Hence the need for a big rug.

We tried the IKEA rug in the space and it was too busy and did not flow from the style of the dining room.


Again Overstock to the rescue with this baby….


Love it.  I think the colors and style are perfect.


Now off to open up the other boxes. 

And never paint another dining room ceiling again.

It all Started With Poker Night and a Little Wine

And ended up with another in progress project.

dining room ceiling fun

Let me back up.  You see the dining room ceiling has been bugging me for awhile. 

We started with this and I am sure that you can understand why it was the one of the first things to be painted.


I am not sure why I filled in the paint colors exactly how the previous owners did on the decorative aspect of the ceiling.  Obviously they were not expert interior designers.  At least not in this decade.  Early 90’s maybe.

But that is what I did, using one shade deeper on the color strip on the ceiling.


After living with it for awhile, I did not like how the crown molding was not prominent and there was too much white up there.  However, there were other projects to do and Mr. “We need to finish everything we are doing before we start something new” did not think it was a priority to change.

That is where poker night came in.

I has spent the entire day sewing drapery panels for the kitchen.  And they were not finished so I was feeling like starting something new and Derek was gone for a couple of hours.  See where this is going?

So with my trusty side kick of red wine, I emptied the dining room, taped the molding, halfway tarped the carpet (it already has major battle scars so I am impressed I tarped at all), and broke out the wall color to apply to the ceiling.

I told myself it would only take an hour and I am happy to report that I was correct.  I would just move all the furniture back in and he would not even notice.

Except I don’t know if I like it.  Ehhhh…

During the day it is OK….

dining room ceiling fun

dining room ceiling fun

But at night the darker ceiling looks really blue and the lighter color looks more gray/green.  And does not look like it matches at all.

dining room ceiling fun

dining room ceiling fun

You can tell he is really loving that I am iffy on my new project.  Especially since all the dining room furniture  is blocking the stairs and front door currently.  So much for being stealthy.

And I could leave it because it is OK.  But it was just OK the last time and it has brought us me back to repainting.  I see myself trying to eat my turkey at Thanksgiving but not enjoying myself because I can’t get over that the ceiling colors don’t match.

So my other options-

a) change the globes on the light fixture because I think it is their yellowness that is causing the issue.

b) change the color of the inset….like a metallic pearl or silver

c) Derek’s idea, paint the vertical part of the inset white so that the two colors are not next to each other and therefore do not look so different at night

d) ????

I am open for other ideas because I am officially stumped. 

And annoyed because I while I was painting I was already writing this post in my head.  Except it had a better ending.  Like- I love it! It did not cost a cent!  Derek was so surprised that I totally completed a project in a couple of hours.  Go forth and paint your ceilings because it is so much fun!

Oh well.

Dishwasher Naïveté

Hope everyone had a wonderful long holiday weekend.  We finally had some cooler weather and it was so nice to be able to be outside.  And of course worked on home projects.  Most of which are not ready to unveiled yet…except for one.

Since moving in, this appliance has been a major source of frustration.


Not only was it ugly  with it’s cream bisque color, it did a terrible job of getting dishes cleaned.  No matter what detergent we used (believe me we tried them all) and using the heavy wash all the time, things still came out dirty. 

Since we remodeled the kitchen, the appliances have been on the to-do list and we had the last straw with it this weekend.  So we decided to upgrade.


We thought we would install it ourselves…..and by ourselves I mean Derek would install it and I would watch.  And in case you were wondering we went with a Kitchenaid.

Naively we thought that it would be no big deal.  Just slide the old one out, rehook up the new one and slide it back in.  Cake.

It did not exactly work out that way.

First issue, one of the bolts on the little feet was stripped and would not move.  After trying multiple solutions, googling extensively and calling people more knowledgeable than us….we were brought to this.


Nothing like taking a sawzall to a brand new appliance that just cost over $1000.  That was not anxiety provoking.

After we he solved the foot problem.  We encountered more problems.  Most of them centered around the new dishwasher being slightly bigger than the old one and the way the wood floor was installed underneath.  Enter a chisel and prybar.  Neither of those tools were on the install directions either. 

Sorry I don’t have pictures of those…by that point we were past the “this is fun and let’s document for the blog” mentality.   It was more the “this is the stupidest idea ever and our new dishwasher is not going to fit and hopefully they won’t notice we had to use a sawzall when we have to return it mentality”

We did learn that the hardwoods in the kitchen were not original to the house.  There is ugly baby blue linoleum under there.  So even though I am not fan of the honey oak color of the wood, I now have a new found appreciation for them.

We finally got it done a little after midnight.  But it we did not turn it on.  Because if it happened to spew water everywhere I think Derek may have taken the sawzall to the front if it.

The good news was when we woke up with clearer heads and turned it on it worked beautifully.  Whew. And I happen to like how it looks too.


It blends in so much better with the cabinets and really completes the kitchen.  Just don’t look at the cream fridge or stove.


So we ended the holiday weekend with doing lots of dishes and marveling how clean they are coming out no matter how dirty they are going in.  And it is super quiet too.  And the pain of the install makes me appreciate it even more.  Well me at least, I am not sure if Derek is that stage yet.  It might some more clean dishes to accomplish that.

Getting in the Spirit

This post has been a long time coming. I actually had all the Christmas decorations up the Monday after Thanksgiving. I was so proud of myself that the boxes were put away and I was going to be getting to the "house tour" post right away.....

But then something happened.....I caught "just one more thing" virus. I wanted to DIY a wreath, get some live greenery, hang tons of ornaments in the kitchen etc. etc. etc. Hence why this post is three weeks behind.

So what prompted me to finally get it up? I decided I was focusing way too much on the "details" and missing out on the "spirit" of the holidays. Every night after work I was running around frantically working on details and not getting any sleep. Not a good way to get in the spirit. I love having the blog because it is motivation to finish projects. But in this case the thought of showcasing my holiday decorations when there are so many awesomely decorated homes in the blog world was anxiety provoking and causing me to sweat the details.

Last night I made a decision to let things go. No one is going to care if the Christmas cards do not have silver embossed snowflake stamps this year. No one is going to care if the gift tags do not coordinate perfectly with the wrapping paper. If I don't get all the Christmas quilts done there is always next year. No one is going to notice if every inch of the house is not impeccably decorated. We aren't hosting any holiday celebrations anyway so the decorations are for our enjoyment and should not be a source of stress. The holidays are about the spirit and not about perfection.

So with my new philospohy in mind I am ready to post our Christmas house tour. There are still things I wish I would have had time for, but I keep telling myself to just save those for next year (it will give me something to blog about then:)).

Now that I am off my soapbox, here is the Anything Pretty house decked out in the holiday spirit-

Dining Room

Detail of the bead garland on the china cabinet-

Detail of the table runner-

Family Room

(here for DIY tree skirt post)

Hope you enjoyed the tour!


This Post Could Possibly Include Christmas Decorations (Yes Before Turkey Day)

I am back for week 2 of the blog party....this time it is Dare To-Entertain.
Dare to DIY

(good thing Emily having this party to make sure I post occasionally during this incredibly busy time at work....this week will be better I promise). Last week there were so many awesome thanksgiving ideas at the party and I met so many great bloggers.

Anyways for this week we were supposed to show off our table, whether it was set for everyday, Thanksgiving or Christmas.

Since I like to use any excuse to get out the good china and I have so much more Christmas stuff and because it was a great excuse to start decorating for Christmas early.....I chose a Christmas setting.

The challenge I gave myself: not spending a single cent. I have a slight weakness when it comes to spending money on holiday decorating. But we are not hosting Christmas or Thanksgiving this year so spending money was a little silly.

So here is the Anything Pretty Dining Room (almost) all decked out for the holidays-
Align Center

The details-

These frames were left over favors from my bridal shower, now they are perfect place markers-

My knock-off Pottery Barn plates I found a couple of years ago at ABC Distributing for $10 (for 12). They are less formal than all the china, but I think they add a fun Christmas element to the table-

The bead garland around all the candles-
The table runner-

The napkin and napkin ring-

Of course there were things I would have liked to done (like maybe a glass personalized ornament hanging from a silver branch at each setting or red sparkly candles instead of white) but that would have cost some money so I am happy with what I was able to do with things sitting around the house. This week I am going to add some more decorative elements to the dining room as a whole but this party got the table kick started. Now I just need to pour the red wine!