Saturday is Here

Hi, hi. We are heading out as soon as Wyatt's baseball practice is over to visit a good college friend from back in the day. I am so excited to catch up with her and her husband (it's been a few years) and meet their adorable little son. She has been busy growing her interior design firm, Brianna Michelle Interior Design and I have been a long time admirer of her work. This pic above is the master of the Greatwater Retreat she finished in 2015 and it is stunning. Simple, clean and elegant and a place I would have no problem moving right into tomorrow. 

Anyway, off to drink wine and eat some Hillstone with good peeps...happy weekend ya'all

Hello From Tampa

Feeling the need to post a little blurb on this dusty old blog today and start a little conversation with no one about nothing...

We've been busy moving from one of the best cities in the country to one of the not best cities in the country. Now, I'm not saying there aren't a lot of opportunities here in Tampa, and I'm not saying that I won't eventually be happy here, but I find myself in a phase of my life where I feel like a fish out of water. I vaguely remember bemoaning about our move to Seattle when we left San Francisco, which is laughable at this point.

So what does a girl do when she moves to the wild, wild west? She works. She spends time with her family and spends way too much time with her husband in an effort to figure out what the next piece of this puzzle will be. If you're visiting this blog for the first time, my husband and I are starting our own hospitality business where we have family to help out with the kids. So far, we have been lucky enough to make some connections with some people here in Tampa that have the same vision we have for this city but I would have liked to already found our first hotel project, like yesterday. Starting from obscurity is hard. 

The struggle is real. Let's look at pretty things.

Loving the staircase in this  English Estate . I love the color of the runner against the rich wood.

Loving the staircase in this English Estate. I love the color of the runner against the rich wood.

This  fixer-upper  is amazing. I watched this transformation on-demand last week and my mind was blown away. I've decided I like when Joanna does modern.

This fixer-upper is amazing. I watched this transformation on-demand last week and my mind was blown away. I've decided I like when Joanna does modern.

I got lost in  Workstead  land ... not a bad place to be. Everything they do looks so simple and effortless. 

I got lost in Workstead land ... not a bad place to be. Everything they do looks so simple and effortless. 

I've always loved neon signage and I feel like it's even lovelier when it's juxtaposed above the french bistro table and green banquet (link  here ). 

I've always loved neon signage and I feel like it's even lovelier when it's juxtaposed above the french bistro table and green banquet (link here). 

Brain unloaded. I'm out. 

We Almost Bought a Hotel

Nope. You did not read the title if this post incorrectly. We almost bought an eight room b&b located right outside of St. Petersburg, Florida but at the last minute we decided to rescind our offer because the financing seemed a bit too risky. 

But let's back up a minute...

Kevin and I have long talked about us owning a hotel eventually. He is passionate about hospitality and although I don't necessarily share that same  passion, I have a lot of experience in the industry and dream one day of being able to brand and design something of our own.  

This past January, during the endlessly grey winter in Seattle, Kevin sunk into a bit of depression (unhappy with work, always a little on edge, envious of people doing their own thing), which is strange because he is generally a very positive person. The winter months are really tough here, really tough. For days out of the year, it barely seems light outside. Sure, there is also the rain but it's that constant darkness that sneaks into your soul and steals your sunshine. 

So we started doing some research as to where we wanted to go next as we pretty much agreed another winter in Seattle was improbable. We had been to Florida visiting family last November and had casually been looking at hotels for sale in the area. There are so many and they are all sooo bad. Poorly run, unkept and void of any service or charm (think seashells and dolphins, BLAH). Everywhere you look on the West Coasts, cute little b&b's are popping up, airbnb is allowing us to peak into some drool worthy spaces and restaurant an retail design is pretty much awesome. So why not Florida? 

Enter my in-laws. Maybe their motive to get us down there is two-fold (hello grandkids) but they started helping us look at spaces while Kevin and I researched the market. We fell in love with an oceanfront mansion turned b&b, fell in love, hired a lawyer, made an offer, got rejected, made another offer, offer was accepted-we looked for financing (not easy), found financing and then after reading the fine print, got cold feet and rescinded. 

I felt depressed for the next two days. All that happened in about two-three months. The hardest part of the emotional rollercoaster of buying a place like that is that there is just so much waiting and not knowing if you should sign your kid up for summer camp or put a deposit down for preschool. When do we quit our jobs? What do I do if my projects aren't finished by the time we are supposed to leave,? When do we put our house on the market? It's brutal. 

After the initial depression of coming so close and not actually holding the keys in our hands in the end went away, clarity soon followed and we realized we had made the right decision for us. It was such a learning experience and we can't wait to start hitting the pavement again in search of the one. This time, we will be there in person, find those pockets that would embrace our story and be more sure of what we are getting ourselves into.

I have to admit that although I tried to not get overly attached to the idea of designing this one, I couldn't stop myself and started a pinterest board. I fell in love with the idea of doing something kitschy in the powder room and fell down a rabbit hole of toile wallpaper. Sort of obsessed right now. 

A nod the Florida Keys and to Earnest Hemingway's cats...

A basket and hat wall that guests could take for their day on the beach...

Outdoor inspiration...

Richly saturated velvet sofa with tufting...

Bucket List: Seattle

Moving to Seattle almost 2.5 years ago was quite honestly, very hard. We had lived in San Francisco for most of our twenties and some of my greatest friends and fondest memories were curated in that city. It's where Kevin and I became a team, where we adopted our first dog and had our first child. 

But The Emerald City has slowly grown on me. I finally feel like I have a supportive group of friends in my life, my babies are happy and I can open my back door to let my dog out with ease. The topography is beautiful and green and luscious and the long summer days are what dreams are made of. Sure, there is an insane amount of rain that happens during the winter months and there's a period in November where the sun never really seems to come up and that totally sucks but overall, it's a great place to live. It feels more family friendly than The Bay and it is (for now) less expensive. Sometimes the vibe even reminds me of a younger SF before the twitters, the linkedins and facebooks started calling it home. 

My husband hates Seattle. The gloomy days are just too gloomy for him and there is really no amount of sunshine that can make up for it in his mind. He wants out and there are things in the works that could realistically send us somewhere else sometime very soon.

Which leads me to thinking about all the things I want to do before we leave. The top left corner of the U.S. seems so far away to where we could be headed that I am afraid I might never make it back. This weekend, we can cross one thing off that unwritten bucket list; The San Juan Islands. We are headed to Orcas Island with some friends and we are really excited about the getaway. The house is almost clean and the bags are pretty much packed. There's only a slight issue with getting onto the ferry but I think it will all figure itself out. We will either leave for Anacortes tonite or at four in the morning tomorrow, either way, we will get there.

Other things I want to do include...

Visit Vancouver/B.C.
Drink Pinot Noir in Willamette Valley
Hike the "basecamp" of Mt. Rainier
Eat at Earnest Loves Agnes
Put gum on The Gumwall (so grroooosss but so tempting....)
Eat dinner at dusk at the restaurant that sits atop the Space Needle
Go back to Portland to do some tax free shopping
Do a boozy brunch cruise with friends
Take the littles to see The Troll (have avoided him until now)
Go shopping for "can't live withouts" by myself in Pioneer Square and Capitol Hill

...and whatever else you think I should do before leaving the PNW.



Blogging On My Mind....

Blogging. I'm honestly tempted.  I've dangled my feet in these waters before and it's never bode well. I've honestly never really committed to posting on the regular because I am realist and know my real life will always supersede my desire to put any time or effort into an online presence. 

But life has become weird and great and wonderful and terrible and for some reason, I keep telling myself to write about it. So maybe I fucking will. Maybe I'll write about all the shit that is going right and inevitably wrong these days. Maybe I'll talk about what I am learning at the job that robs me of weekends with my family. Or perhaps a therapeutic vent about my recent revelation that relationships and friendships change for better or worse as we grow and do our own things and have our own families will make me feel less sad. Maybe I'll start sharing all the juicy details of a project that my husband and I are going after hard. 

The struggle is real. And so is the joy. 

Also, can we please look at Jenni Kayne's home in Tahoe? Domino featured her home in their most recent issue but I first spotted it months ago here and fell in love. A major life goal of mine is to be able to buy a lakefront vacation property in Michigan where we can all gather and spend time with family and friends.