Sunday, October 4, 2015

Happy 1st Anniversary, Rineharts!

Today marks our one year wedding anniversary!  I'm still having a hard time believing it's been a full year.  Time really does fly.  We've also done so much in 365 days - we adopted a dog, bought a house, traveled to Oregon, Catalina and Maui, were both promoted at work, among so many other little momentous occasions.

Without further ado, here's how we spent our first anniversary!

Hold up - rewind for a hot second...

And we're back!  First thing we did was exchange gifts.

In honor of paper, I contacted Meehea who owns the cutest little Etsy shop.  She hand drawns, paints then digitizes her pieces and I'm obsessed!  She even included Kona in her painting. <3

Then, we went to Oak Glen where Dustin proposed.  It was raining cats and dogs, but we found a store right off the road that had everything we wanted - apples, apple cider, apple pie, and apple + pumpkin butter.

Check out our loot!

Then we came home and prepped our balloon.  As our "unity ceremony", Dustin and I locked heart-shaped padlocks together to represent our love locking and commit ourselves to each other forever.  We tied the keys to a balloon and we let the keys up into the sky!  So we decided to release another balloon for our anniversary and write some top moments on the balloon from our first 365 days together.

Up, up and away!

Last but not least!  We had a mini replica of our cake made and I quickly threw together a cake topper with some craft supplies and skewers we had lying around.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Organizing... Washi Tape!

Washi tape is the best invention since Toaster Strudel's.  We use it for everything - marking where we hang pictures, hanging up birthday signs, using it for all kinds of decorations, sealing envelopes, etc. etc. etc.  The list goes on, and the best part - it doesn't ruin your walls when you pull it off.

It also comes in 10 million different colors and patterns that you don't need but you'll sure as hell buy them all!  These pictures have my washi tape collection looking pretty scarce.  Don't worry people, there's no empty spools nowadays.... or maybe you should worry about that.

Enough about my washi addiction.  I used to keep these bad boys in mason jars, but my collection started getting out of control and every time I wanted to use one, I'd have to empty out the entire container to find it.

My BFF Jenny craftily (yes, that's a real word) used a spool rack to hold and showcase escort cards (cute lil flags!) at her wedding.  :: idea lightbulb :: What a great way to organize my addiction!

With that, I bring you... Organization Station: Washi Tape!

We have a closet in our office that is slowly turning into the craft supply center.  We decided to nail the spool rack (from Michael's) to the wall for out-of-the-way, but easy access.  Two nails, badabing badaboom and we were all set!


How do you organize your washi tape?

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Home... Wedding Photo Display

One of our first DIY projects for the new home was creating a shrine to our wedding day.  I mean, who doesn't want to come home and look at pictures of the Rineharts?  I know I do.

It sounds cliché, but it really was the best day ever and the moments captured deserved some primo wall space!

I saw these frames on West Elm and became obsessed.  They're so clean, shiny and simple.  However, a set of four assorted would totally break the bank at $180!

Like most new homeowners, we wanted to be thoughtful about where our money was going, so this was the perfect opportunity for a DIY project!


First things first -- remove the glass and backing from the frame and start spraying!  We didn't feel the need to seal them because we figured they wouldn't be handled a lot.

After allowing the frames to thoroughly dry (a full 24 hours to be safe), we inserted the photos.

We had a lot of floating ledges at our apartment, and Dustin hates them because of how much work they usually are.  IKEA's were surprisingly easy but they didn't come with screws, so be sure to have some handy.

Here's the final product...

We plan on putting something to the left of the smaller ledge, but need to find the perfect item!

Until next time!

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Home... Owners!!

In one of my last posts, I announced that we are now parents to our fur baby, Kona, and a few posts before that I announced we got married... and today, I'm announcing that train is cruising on by to new homeowner station!  I mean, why stop the momentum?

You heard me right, we are officially broke!  I mean... homeowners!!

If you live in Southern California and you're 20-something or even 30-something, say buh-bye to the "American Dream" of buying your first home... unless you're making millions.

Anywhere else (ignoring San Fran + NYC) in the good ol' U.S. of A, you can buy a perfectly adorable starter home at $300,000 or less.  I will laugh in your face if you try that in LA.  All you Angeleno's know what I mean... when you're watching House Hunters and people be like "Our budget is $200,000, but my crazy, budget-less wife is willing to spend $250,000...AH!"

No joke, here is where I live and all the homes $300,000 or less...

So here's how it all started for us...

Step 1: "We're sick of apartment living"

There are people who think renting isn't such a bad idea.  Everyone has their reasons to renting or buying, but us, we want to settle down on a tree-lined street, sharing walls with only my huzz, painting those walls any damn color we want, hanging pictures on every inch of that wall space, and having a yard that isn't down two long hallways and two sets of stairs.  Is that too much to ask??

Step 2: "Let's look at homes for sale"

Behold Redfin, the best home seeker site ever.  Its easy interface makes it a breeze to look for houses, favorite the ones you want to see and share them with friends.  The Redfin agents I hear are really good and you get half their commission back when you buy a home through them.  That's money in the bank people!

Step 3: "Maybe we should find out how much we can afford and find a realtor"

Shop around on lenders!  Be careful though, each will run a credit report which can lower your score.  We were lucky enough to have a family friend as a realtor -- trust is key though and someone who 'gets' what you want and need.

Step 4: "Let's go!"

At first house hunting is fun and exciting!  You start to imagine all the backyard parties, new friends (neighbors), DIY projects, and family "firsts" you'll have in the home.  Then... your unrealistic expectations get smashed by the Hulk.  The Hulk - figuratively speaking - can be your bank account, lender, home inspector, realtor, etc.  Reality sets in.  Whatever you do, don't let anyone put the pressure on you, there is always time to find the perfect home.  I hear it usually takes people between 6-12 months.  We were looking for a home in a sellers market, so we had to be on call to drive out and view houses as they came on the market.  Within three days, the houses would be in escrow.  Also, we were looking in a neighborhood 30 minutes away from our apartment and work, so it was an exhausting process.

I do recommend making a list of the "Things-I'm-Not-Thinking-About-But-Are-VERY-Important"...
  1. HVAC
  2. Sprinkler system
  3. Appliances
  4. Upgraded electrical panel
  5. Upgraded windows
I wasn't thinking about these things, but I realize just how important they are now!

Step 5: "Okay, we want to put in an offer"

It only gets worse from here unfortunately.  Selling agents want to get you in a bit of a bidding war if the market's hot, and it's impossible to know if you're really just bidding with yourself.  "If you go in at X, it's yours!" "Just kidding... can you go in at Y" "Aw someone is going in at Z".  This was the worst because by this time, it's difficult not to have an emotional stake in the home. Keep in mind... #everythinghappensforareason

Lucky for us, our offer was accepted!!

Step 6: "What happens in 30 days before final closing?"

Still trying to figure out the answer to this question.

For first homebuyers, no one is holding your hand telling you what goes on behind the scenes, so we did a lot of checking in with our lender and realtor to make sure we were doing what we could to help the process along.  The last week was the craziest.  There was a ton of last minute scrambling to get the paperwork together!  

Step 7: KEYS!!

Step 8: Take the token new homeowner photo...

Step 9: Blog post every single house project!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Photography... Anniversary Shoot

Two of my very best friends and I share a string of anniversary dates - how fun is that?!  This weekend, Dustin and I celebrated six months of wedded bliss, my BFF Jenny and her husband celebrated one year, and these two lovebirds celebrate TWO YEARS!

Two years ago, Big Pea (Evan) and Little Pea (Noelle) got married.  It was a perfect day in our hometown of Palos Verdes, and after eight years (at the time) together, well worth the wait!  They are the CUTEST high school sweethearts you'll ever meet.  You might think that 10+ years together and you'd be way out of the honeymoon period... not these two!  Think again, they are so in love and in tune with each other.  #RelationshipGoals #NoButReally.

So when they asked me if I'd take pictures of them in celebration of their 10 year anniversary together and two years married -- I jumped at the opportunity.  Dustin and I loved spending quality time with them as we galavanted around LA.  I'd never taken pictures of a couple before, so this was a new experience for me.  I loved it and they were so professional and photogenic!  The images speak for themselves - start scrolling. :)

In honor of their special day, here is a throwback to April 6, 2013...

(Photo Credit: Joey Ikemoto)

Two years later... <3