Tuesday, April 12, 2016

March Madness

March was one for the books! Work travel took me to some really great places, and I had the opportunity to combine work with a little bit of fun. In between meetings in LA and San Jose, I had a full day to myself. I rented a car and toured Carmel and Monterey. There was so much to see in so little time, but I think I hit the highlights. I stopped at the Carmel Mission museum, walked around the shops downtown, and then drove along  Scenic Road. I could have done that twice! With the ocean on the right side, and the most amazing homes on the left, I really needed two trips down the street to see it all. After I was done in Carmel, I took the 17-Mile Drive to Monterey, stopping at Pebble Beach and the Lone Cypress. Again- amazing homes and breathtaking views. If I was able to do it all over again, I would skip Monterey (too touristy) and stay in Carmel. Better food and sight seeing by far!! Hank and I will definitely be going back for a romantic weekend.

The Holland House: Carmel Sight-Seeing

While in LA, the keynote speaker at my work event was none other than Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple.  Getting to hear him speak was really special. He was so engaging and passionate about education- it was really motivating to hear his thoughts. We chatted briefly, and then he signed the back of my iPhone. Bucket list- check!!

The Holland House: Steve Wozniak Meeting

I got to go home for a week before heading back to California- this time to Palm Springs (you'll hear no complaints from me). I had never been before and was excited to see a new place. The weather was absolutely perfect, but I didn't have a ton of time outside of the work event to enjoy it. I did receive an invitation to the Indian Wells tennis tournament, and watched an exciting match with John Isner, and saw the tail end Serena Williams playing. I've never seen a pro tennis tournament before, and really enjoyed it. I also got to ride the aerial tramway to the top of Mt. San Jacinto. I'm not normally one to be scared of heights, but this was almost a little too thrilling for me. The view from the top was totally worth the trip up though.

The Holland House: Palm Springs

Lest you think that my work travel is ALL glamorous...I will share this funny Air BnB experience. Our new marketing guy (who is all of 24 years old) booked my stay in PS. All of the hotels were sold out due to the conference and tennis tournament, so we turned to Air BnB. This is where I *thought* I was staying:

The Holland House: The Amado

And this is where I somehow ended up. An apartment with a hair salon in the dining area. Too funny! Not sure how the reservation got mixed up, but I survived and made the best of it. (I'll also be booking my own reservations from now on.)

The Holland House: Air Bnb Hair Salon

With work travel done for the month, it was time to have some fun in Austin. One of our running friends invited us to the Dell Match Play, with access to a hospitality suite for the day (free food and drinks FTW!). The event was held at the Austin Country Club, where the course is right on the lake. The views are beautiful, the weather was awesome, and it was such a fun way to play hooky from work for the day. It was the inaugural year for the event, and it went so well that they will be coming back for at least the next 3 years. I consider it a can't miss if you have the opportunity to go. We got to see Jordan Spieth up close, and also had Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy (hello, muscles!) sightings.

The Holland House: Dell Match Play
Jordan Spieth in the middle.

The Holland House: 15th Hole
This was our view of the 15th hole from the hospitality suite.

Last but not least, we did a little bit of housework as well. Hank transplanted a Magnolia tree to make room for a veggie garden, and so far everything seems to be growing. We planted tomatoes, cucumbers, okra, bell peppers, zucchini squash, red onions and parsley. We have absolutely no idea what we're doing, so I'm just focusing on keeping everything watered and free of bugs.

The Holland House: Veggie Garden

Hank also finished a project that had been bugging him immensely- our unsightly laundry room. In true Holland fashion, we didn't get a good "before" picture that showed the wire shelving. Hank was so excited to rip it down that he totally forgot. He started the project off by installing bead board, but after loving our shiplap in the living room so much, he tore it down and did "cheap" lap instead- just regular plywood ripped down at Home Depot. A lot less expensive, and still the same general look. It's nice to have covered storage now, a fresh coat of paint, and a pretty new light fixture.

The Holland House: Laundry Room Makeover

So that recaps a very fun and busy month. April is already off to a great start with several charity events and a weekend in Houston. More posts to come.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Modern Coastal Living Room Makeover

Test test..... Not sure this thing still works. If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you know our life has been pretty uneventful lately. You'll hear no complaining from me- it's been really nice to have a little less stress in our lives. The new job is going really well (working from home is a dream), the animals are all healthy, and Hank and I are slowly getting back into a regular running routine.

The biggest news is that our living room makeover (that's been over a year in the making) is finally complete! When I moved into Hank's home, my goal was to get rid of everything brown. We wanted a more "modern coastal" look for the home, and have tried to stay true to that in all our decisions and purchases. Over the years we've made small improvements here and there, doing most of the work ourselves. We've collected some furniture pieces and painted the walls, but knew that it wouldn't all come together until we tackled the main living room wall. After moving the TV from the cabinet to above the fireplace, we were left with a giant hole, and a lot of unsightly cables. After a lot of careful thought, serious Pinterest browsing, and saving- our dream is finally a reality.

The Holland House: Living Room Wall Before
Living Room Wall "Before"

The Holland House: Living Room Wall After
Living Room Wall "After"

The biggest transformation is the main wall. It was most definitely inspired by our love of Fixer Upper. Hank has a man-crush on Chip, and we love shiplap almost as much as Joanna does. When you walk into our home this wall is definitely a focal point, and it was a really sad first impression. Our DIY skills are slightly above average, but we knew this project would never get done the way we wanted to if we didn't call in professionals. Luckily we knew a contractor who came highly recommended, and I credit him with making our vision become reality. I highly recommend Peglars Custom Cabinetry if you need any work done in the Austin area. Jesse is the utmost professional and timely person I've ever worked with.

To round out the modern coastal look, we stuck with neutral fabrics for furniture, and accented it with a bold blue rug from Pottery Barn. For the past year we've had just a couch and a random chair in the living area. Today I found the absolute most perfect coffee table and set of chairs at Back Home, a local Austin home decor store. I splurged on a few pieces, and shopped at Home Goods and World Market to find affordable decorative items to fill in the gaps. (Frugal tip- find a used or half-price book store for inexpensive books with pretty spines or covers. It's an easy way to fill in shelf space without spending a fortune.)

The Holland House: Living Room Before
Living Room "Before"

The Holland House: Living Room After

The coffee table is one of my favorite new pieces. I love the modern touch that it brings to the room. Several of the furniture pieces are wood, so I wanted to balance that out with a piece that wasn't so heavy. Katie the cat seems to love it too.

The Holland House: Gold Molecular Coffee Table

We're thrilled with the finished product. The room feels light and airy, and is such a calming place to sit and relax. I love the combination of new and old- you can see my grandmother's old desk in the background, and I love that we were able to keep it in the space. Hank even upcycled a piece of live edge wood to make a sofa table (that still needs to be accessorized), using inexpensive hairpin legs he found online and then painted himself.

The Holland House: Live edge wood table
Hank's sofa table

The Holland House: Shelf Styling
Accessorized shelves, courtesy of my mom
Thanks for stopping by! I've got one other home project to share and hopefully I'll be able to get those pictures up soon.
Site Design By Designer Blogs