Sayonara 2013 and helllllo 2014.
Blink and another year is gone… I guess that’s what happens when you get older haha. Taking time to reflect on the past year gives this new sense of motivation to plow through the dark and cold early months of the New Year. So let’s open up the blog and check out a highlight reel of what the beau and I accomplished this past year…
- Macklemore thrift shop challenge (#8) where I scored a desk for $25 and sported a pink suit- among other lyrical tag lines.
- Winter Pinterest Challenge where we fixed our lighting issue by creating a $5 drum shade (#6).
- Spring Pinterest Challenge where we created some homemade garden stepping stones (#2). Spoiler: they were easy and cheap my friends!
- Then there was my first taste into blog hustlin’ was when I begged and pleaded for votes on our director’s chair update (#3) for our areas Goodwill Upcycle Challenge.
- Then there were some Craft With What You’ve Got challenges like our (ugly and kinda failed) flower paint chip project and the DIY Mason Jar Compost Pail (#4)- which we’re absolutely smitten with- function & beauty who could go wrong?!
- One of my favorite challenges- the Silhouette Challenge. I seriously wish I would have found this challenge earlier to make the machine less intimidating. Anywho it prompted some pretty bombdigitty Simpson Invitations (#7) as well as business cards for this lil ‘ol blog in the form of dual sided cutout cards (#5).
- That same Silhouette Challenge group organized a gift tag exchange which prompted these puntastic luggage tags (#1).
From here on out, let’s take things quarterly.
The first few months of 2013, January-March, this baby blog was in its infant stages. Everything from advice to purchase your own home to how we planned to tackle our house remodel were addressed with my newbie work gloves on. I’m entirely blessed that my boyfriend’s ridiculously handy. Wordy (yet useful) posts and wonky arse photos were the name of the game:
- One of our favorite quickie projects was the Mailbox Post DIY (#2). Even though we found out we didn’t need it (we have banks of mailboxes), we were happy to give it to a deserving friend.
- We offered a peak into our smelly and dated home with a tour (#1) and floor plan (#6) before we rolled up our sleeves and got our hands dirty. Too bad the camera couldn’t pick up the smells.
- So we had this weird living room layout where I decided to claim the misplaced space as my office (7) and we opened up the living room to give our home the open floor plan it deserved. We even found out we were blessed with real hardwood floors (#9).
- We talked about how we tackled our kitchen with a kitchen
a paintjob to cover-up the nicotine smell (after cleaning and sanding the bajezus
out of them). We even saved a lot of money when restoring
our kitchen hardware (#8) to their former 70’s glory. They remind me of the Jetson’s and vintage cars so they were keepers.
And even scoured Craigslist and scored a Clearance faucet when replacing
- We taught you how to repair drywall (#3) and with a little peak on what it looks like on the other side of the wall!
- We got to take our aggression out on the upstairs by completely gutting it. Psst, we cannot wait to get our hands dirty and make that space livable!!
- And we admitted we had a bit of a bat issue, good thing we did some research and saved many of those little buggers (they’re extremely beneficial to the environment).
- We even devised a plan to fix our countertops (#4) which we have yet to implement.
The next few months, April-June, we were equally as busy hammering out projects left and right.
- It’s hard to believe that there was a time when I actually maintained a blogging schedule and kept up on What I Wore Fantastic Fridays. That series was so much fun and even prompted the most under-rated post with a little Where’s Waldo Action (#1). Seriously- that post is in my top five favorites… if you haven’t read it yet, do it. It should brighten your day.
- We used my favorite DIY’ers weapon to update things, spray-paint, to give new life to pieces the previous owners left behind like a rusty bucket and some garden trinkets and plastic bench.
- I busted out some 8th grade sewing skills and made two adorable outdoor pillows (#2), for less than $10 for said bench. I’m absolutely infatuated with the color scheme and how the pillow pattern blended so well.
- We slapped some paint in our bedroom and called it a day.
- We then decided to convert our second bedroom (since the other bedrooms were destroyed upstairs), into a walk-in-closet/laundry room. Best.Decision.Ever. It’s actually connected to our bedroom making our morning routine all the better. We had an issue with unlevel floors (#7) and then had to add some plumbing (#8).
- My favorite part of the room was when the beau decided to
contain my shoe mess. It’s also where
I compared my high heel shoe
hoardingcollection to martinis (#5) for a shelf post?! Because those three things capture my heart.
- Even though we didn’t post until May, we hatched a plan in March to start our very own garden. We were/are complete newbies, but navigated through it like champs. Of course the amazing blogger that I am, I failed miserably to keep you updated on the progress. However, I managed to squeeze in some planning, veggie planting (#3), and phase 1 of cleaning up our large yard (#4).
- June was the month that I got to get my feet wet- in this whole networking-with-other-bloggers-thang by attending the Maiedae Mixer (#9). It was a fun little road trip to a social where we, (Christina and I) met some pretty amazing women who were also navigating the blog world. Like Haven (we’ll get into in a during the 3rd quarter), it prompted a mini-series from roomie gifts (#6), to how I would use what I learned toward the mecca event that rocked my world (aka Haven).
- We even managed to squeeze in a little entryway progress by removing and slightly widening the doorway.
So then the summer hit, July-September, I feel as though these were the months where I really started to understand the whole blogging world. Of course August was the HUMONGEOUS turning point, with Haven. But let’s give everything their proper bullet points:
- All the Maidae Mixer attendees received a couple rolls of washi tape and at first I was a bit confused as what to do with them. Then all of a sudden, we whipped up a cord organization/prettification (#8) and a cute label for a shared extension cord (#4) for Haven- you know since there’s four girls and maybe 3 outlets.
- Alright so August was a huuuuge turning point. Attending Haven, a blog conference for DIY bloggers, was hands down, the best.experience.eva. Not only did it dangerously arm me with mind-blowing knowledge (#1), it also provided oodles of encouragement from women just.like.me. It even prompted an entire mini-series from what to pack, to a quirky video made with my roomies and everything in-between.
- Let’s not forget that it
got me up off my tushactually more seat time to redesign the blog (#3) and create a brand that I could be proud of.
- August & September were also the month to try out a few guest posts from some of my favorite ladies around the blog world like Marie from Progression by design with her luxurious hotel style (#5), Sammi from Every Home is A Castle with her sunburst mirror (#2), and stealing my heart with a Black and White door (#7)- Brynne from The Gathered Home among many other sweetheart bloggers showing off their stuff over here.
- Lastly, this quarter was where I put some graphic design skills to use by making a chick and polished resume template (#6), created some interactive social media buttons for a fellow blogger friend, and showed a sneak peak at the photography site.
I must say the holidays really got to us this year, after losing someone close to us- we really took some time to grieve and work on getting acclimated to the change. However, there were quite a few holiday projects we hammered out (the previous year but hey- it helped out a great deal during our loss).
- October was the month that I decided to throw a last minute party for the beau. So you heard all about tips to plan your own like DIY’ing 3d invitations (#2), keeping track of your to-dos and budget in a schmancy excel spreadsheet (#4), and scoring the perfect cake and food for your party (#1).
- There were a few last minute Holiday Ideas (sensing the procrastinator in me?) like our Black and White Tree (#5) and easy yet gorgeous Holiday tablescape (#3).
- Even more last minute was a free printable (#6) with one of my favorite movie sayings “Merry Christmas Ya Filthy Animal.”
- Speaking of freebies, to end the year off with even more generosity, I snuck in a free New Year’s Eve Party Invitation (#7)- it’s a Silhouette SVG File.
By no means am I a food blogger but somehow ‘life activities’ turned into whipping up some pretty snazzy recipes like:
- One of our favorite easy throw-it-together and mow-down recipes: BBQ Chicken Pizza
- A simple and scrumptious Summery Pesto Salad.
- And a Festive Red and Green Velvet Christmas Trifle that’s somehow even more mouthwatering than it looks.
Alright so even though those quarters were jam-packed… it still left some time for one of my favorite ‘life’ activities- paying it forward:
- Chopping off 17 inches of hair was one of the highlights of my entire year. I still catch myself whipping my hair harder than Willow Smith (both which cause headaches).
- Another feel good moment was donating time to a cancer fundraiser last winter. Even though we recently lost someone near and dear to us that nasty disease (not the individual for the fundraiser), knowing that we could make a small dent in their cancer world made our hearts grow a little bit stronger.
- If you’re an Instagram follower if not you should be because there may be some exclusive giveaways over there in the future, you may have noticed that my pops and I are lifetime blood donors. We get together every 90 days or so to do something great for those in need, all while having a little lunch date and catching up with our busy lives. Win-win situation if you ask me.
Can you count how many times ‘Haven’ was referred to in this post (without cheating using geeky tools like CYRL+F)? What type of articles are your favorite from Black and White Obsession you know, so I can produce more of them? Are you a fan of variety?
Thank you readers, thank you!!