Archive for November, 2009

Growing like weeds..

November 25th, 2009


Wanted to show you guys the progress my paper-whites have been making. (Here’s what they looked like last week.)  I can barley keep Milo from eating/pulling the grass out of the dirt, so who knows if the grass will still be around by the time I actually have blooms, but oh well.


There hasn’t been too much sun here in Richmond the past couple of days, but they do appear to be making progress.


I am going to take a short break for the Turkey holidays, but will be back ready to rumble next week with NEW Steals and Deals, plus the December Shoe of the Month!  I am also hoping to have our xmas decorations in full swing, so I will keep you guys in the loop with what I am doing.

Gobble Gobble..

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Mrs.vB, Yard/Garden

Hamburger Helper…

November 23rd, 2009

I picked up the November issue of Richmond Magazine purely because of the front cover and tag line.

best burgersI luv, luv, luv a good hamburger!  Currently my favorite burger is from Five Guys Burger and Fries. Ever been there?  It’s amazing!  I don’t know which I like better, the juicy burger or the fresh fries.

But after reading the article about the Best Burger in Richmond, I am up to the challenge of testing out the competition.

I have enlisted Mr. vB and our good friends, Amanda and Dave Monger, to help with this challenge.  Our plan is to rate the burgers the same way that Richmond Magazine did.  We will rate the patty, the bun, the vegetable toppings, and other toppings on a scale from 1-5.  {5 being the best.}

Here are the contenders: Cafe Gutenberg, Honey Whyte’s, Racine, Delux, The Hill Cafe, Davis and Main, Dot’s Back Inn, River City Diner, Can Can Brasserie, Tarrant’s Cafe and The Belvidere at Broad.

Once we have tested every last burger we will crown the 1st Annual BBURP.  {Best Burger Upon Richmond Prize)

Will my {5} guys be able to hold that sacred place in my heart?  Stay Tuned to find out…

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1st Annual BBURP, Friends, Mr.vB, Mrs.vB

Xmas Gift Steals and Deals- Under $50

November 22nd, 2009

I know that Black Friday is right around the corner so that must mean, “it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…”.  I love giving the perfect gift {as you have seen here}, and Christmas is no exception.

For your viewing pleasure, I have compiled a list of my top 5 Christmas Present Steals and Deals for under $50.

  • My Jones Soda- Here you can Customize your own soda pop label.  And you even get to choose what yummy flavor of soda you want!  You can get a 6 pack for $16.99 and a 12 pack for $29.99.  Enter the promo code MYHOLIDAY20 at checkout and get an extra 20% off.    I got a set for my bro and his wife a few years ago and they loved it!  Definitely a unique gift!jonessoda4
  • Mabel’s Labels- Another great customizable gift.  For those parents who are tired of writing their child’s name in sharpie marker on everything, these are stylish name tags that apply to anything and everything.  You name it- clothing, shoes, cups, toys, etc.  And why limit it to your own child.  I had sets made for both my niece and nephew.  {And if it were acceptable for a 30 something year old to have them in her own clothing she probably would} I like the camp/school combo pack because you get a little of everything and all for $34 buckaroos. (do note that this company is based in Canada, so allow for a few extra days for the package to clear customs)mabe;slabels
  • momAgenda-  A great gift for the mom on the go!  This great day-planner has spots for both you and your kiddo’s activities and appointments.  And right now you can get 25% off PLUS free shipping!!momagenda
  • Envirosax- The “original” designer reusable bag.  For only $37.95 you get FIVE reusable bags tucked neatly into one little pouch.  Perfect to slip into your purse, glove compartment, or diaper bag! enivrosax
  • PSA Essentials Personalized Stamp- Choose from over 50 designs for that perfect return address stamp.  The best deal I found was at  Use Promo Code HOLIDAY at checkout and you get 40% off!  So instead of $53, you only pay $31.80!!psa stamp

I hope these suggestions get you inspired to find that perfect gift for those people on your shopping lists!  I will make to sure to pass along any other great ideas that I might find!

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The Perfect Gift

Rooms and Blooms…

November 18th, 2009

Mr. vB and I had a very productive weekend, checking off several things that had been on my our check list.

First up was hanging the pelmet/cornice boxes in the guest room.  Remember this tutorial that I had gotten from Little Green Notebook?

Here is the boring window before..


Here is Mr. vB working his magic with the drill..


And here is the finished project…


What?? Did you think I was going to post the window with the pelmet box? ha-ha

I am really trying to hold out until the whole room is finished before I show everything, but okay twist my arm.

DSC_0333Isn’t it cute?

We also got 3 more replacement windows installed in the sitting room off our bedroom.  I didn’t take any photos during the actual install, because I was busy painting in the kitchen.  But here are some after shots.  There was such a nice breeze coming through all 3 windows, I asked Mr. vB if we could relocate our bed!


Finally- I also started on our xmas decorations.  Nothing fancy, but I always love to have Paper-whites around the house. {something I picked up from my mom}  I stopped by the local greenhouse and picked up a handful of paper-white bulbs and some cat grass.


Have you guys ever “forced” paper-whites before?  It is super easy- you just need a container, some dirt, H2o, and some sunshine!  Oh and yeah- the paper-white bulbs!  I added grass to mine as I think it gives it a great extra touch.  {Plus Milo loves to nibble on my flowers, so better for him to nibble on the grass than my paper-whites!}

DSC_0376Here I laid out the bulbs to make sure they would fit.  Then I dumped out some of the dirt, placed the bulbs where I wanted them, and then piled the dirt back on. Voila- Just that easy!


The above photo is what the bulbs looked like on Sunday.

Here is what they look like now after some sunshine!  The grass is sprouting and the bulbs are about to as well!


As they grow, the paper-whites will get very tall and have blooms like daffodils.  I’m envisioning them on the mantle, the dining room table, or maybe even the console table by the front door.  We shall see!

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Home Improvement, Mrs.vB, Yard/Garden

We’re 100!

November 14th, 2009


Of course not literally, but 100 posts into our blog that is! Hard to believe I’ve had that much to say! I looked back to the very first post I wrote and sheesh.. thank goodness I have found more exciting things to blog about since then!

This weekend Mr.vB and I are hoping to install 2 more replacement windows, get a new digital thermostat for our furnace, hang the pelmet/cornice boxes in the guest room, and put the remainder of the new kitchen cabinet doors on.  Let me backtrack- this list is what I hope to accomplish.  Let’s hope Mr. vB is on the same page! (honey if you’re reading this- love you!)

We’re also working on a bit of a face list for our little blog.  No- we aren’t geting too big for our britches. It’s something that has been in the works for awhile now.  Just need to put on the finishing touches and we will be ready for the big debue!

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What’s wrong with this photo?

November 12th, 2009


This is a multiple choice test.  What in the above picture does not belong?

a. The pile of stuff by the trashcan that needs to go back out to the garage?

b. The hint of a freshly painted head-board that should be in the guest room by now?


c. The 4 plastic cups sitting in the transom window ledge?


If you said C you are a Winner!!

Why might you ask do we have 4 plastic cups sitting on the window ledge?  Well Tropical Depression Ida has made a stop in Richmond and is pelting us with torrential rain storms.  And when the back of your house isn’t sided, nor do you have a good gutter system, apparently the water leaks directly into your house. Nice, eh?


Oh it gets better… So we had put the cups out last night when I first started to notice the water drops.  By this morning I figured they would need to be dumped, but I didn’t take into account how exactly full they might be.  So I grabbed for the first one and it was like a total prank. The cup was filled to the brim with cold, funky water and the entire thing dumped onto my head!!!  It was horrible- there I am standing in my bathrobe, soaking wet head to toe!  After the shock of the cold water wore off, all I could do was laugh…and then I immediately wanted to get back in bed and start the day over.

Moral of this story is that Home Improvemetns aren’t always glamorous. In-fact they can be dirty, messy and almost bring you to tears!  If and when the weather clears up and the rain stops, do know that getting the back of the house finished up has just jumped to the top of the TO-DO list!

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Home Improvement, Mrs.vB

Bobble-Head Lamps…

November 10th, 2009

Remember the poor lamps that Mr. vB destroyed broke during the “paneling project” in the master bedroom”?


Well they’re about to get a second chance on life.

I hit up Home Depot today and found a replacement socket to fix the bobble-head look.


And after conning Mr. vB into helping me, we got it fixed in no time! Boots wanted to be involved too.



But besides fixing the socket, I am also thinking of maybe painting the base a new color.  I’ve been itching to use a peacock blue color somewhere in my house and this may be a good fit.  I also picked up a fun golden velvet lampshade at Ikea this weekend that I think will really pop with the blue.


(have no fear-the shade is shiny because I left the plastic cover on it in-case I need to return it!)

Now I just have to talk Mr. vB into showing me how to use the paint gun on the air compressor.  I figure that will be the easiest way to paint the lamp so you won’t see any brushstrokes!  I am hoping to get to that tomorrow night. I will keep you posted!

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Home Improvement, Mr.vB

We’re FAMOUS!!!

November 9th, 2009 was featured this past Friday on a very popular blog and Mr. vB and I couldn’t be more excited!!!!

I had submitted the before and after photos of our bathroom renovation to Young House Love in hopes of being considered for one of their “reader redesign” posts.  After what felt like years, but was probably actual only minutes, I received an email back from Sheri saying she loved our bathroom and was excited to showcase us on her blog.

Since our 5 minutes of fame, we have had over 2,800 people visit our blog!  We have also covered all 50 States and almost every continent! IT’s INSANE!!

Thank you to all the new readers who have linked to us from YHL.  We hoped you checked out the full bathroom renovation as well as stayed and poked around the other various postings.

If you haven’t seen it yet, go check us out at!

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Dear Target..

November 5th, 2009

This is why i LOVE you so much!  You take an armless chair and cover it with Awesome fabric.  Then you slap an Amazing price on it. You will also send it to me for Free.  It’s like you are almost begging me to buy it from you.  Oh how I wish I had enough space in my house to buy each and every one.  I guess it is time to move!  Until then I will continue to stalk you online and in your stores.  With much love- tvB

chair5Athens, Gerber, Canary and Diamond Upholstered Chair $299

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So Much to Say!

November 3rd, 2009

What a whirlwind 3 weeks I just had!!  I was traveling for work, traveling for play, entertaining guests, and fitting in home projects and I am whooped.  But I’ve got so much to say and catch you up on!  Hope you can stick with me to the end of this post. I have a feeling it might be a long one!

-The Master Bedroom-

Mr. vB got to work putting the paneling up in our bedroom and it looks AWESOME!! {Remember I mentioned it here.} What a transformation it has made to the room!!  Of course we still need to finish priming and painting it, but dang it looks good!  Here it is start to finish!









Did I mention that Mr. vB broke BOTH lamps while he was installing the paneling?  I had been looking for an excuse to get new ones, so I wasn’t too peeved. But don’t tell him that! {ha-ha}

Here is the after shot with the broken lamps… (they are both seriously crooked)


And here is the after shot with the new lamps I picked up at Ikea last week..


-The Guest Room-

I have also been inspired to do a bit of work in the guest room!

I’m envisioning a new headboard, new window treatments, and new bedding.  Sounds like a lot I know- but I’m going to try to do it all for under $250 bucks!  {So far so good!} I want to do the big reveal once it’s all finished, so until then I’m only going to give you sneak peek photos.  Hopefully it will all be done soon!

For the windows- Little Green Notebook posted this awesome tutorial on Pelmet Boxes. {I’ve always heard them referred to as Cornice boxes, but I assume they are the same thing}.  The Tutorial was quite easy and I had the first one done in about 1 hour.  The hardest part was getting the fabric wrapped around the curved edges.  So hard in-fact, that I had to modify my design mid project.

Here is my version of the tutorial in photos.. {let me know if you have questions}






DSC_0300And here it is hanging on the window…


And here are some teaser’s of the finished product…



Total Spent: $15 for materials and $40 for fabric.

For the bedding- I’m inspired to do all white.  Crazy I know, especially with 2 black dogs, but I figure bleach can become my new BFF.  I’m planning on still using the existing bed-skirt and shams, but I want to switch up the other pillows and coverlet.


Total spent: $100

For the headboard- My brother is giving me an old headboard they aren’t using anymore.  I am first going to try to paint it and if that doesn’t work I am going to staple fabric to it.


Total spent: $7 paint

Shew.. hope you are still with me. I know that was a lot of info but I warned you at the beginning, I had a lot to say!  Both Mr. vB and I will be in town this weekend, and I am hoping to get a few more things checked off the to do list.  Guess I might need to make sure Mr. vB is on board!!

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Bedroom Makeover, Home Improvement