Prescription for Panic

So for the second time in the last couple of months, I missed my exit driving to work. (Ironically, the same exit that I claimed stresses me out so much. Does it stress you out, self? Does it?)

It might be time to start worrying that I’m not paying as much attention as I should be.

Anywho. It has been an interesting week. Last Friday, Joey got his first migraine ever. Those of you who suffer from them regularly know what a life suck they can be, but for us, there was the added panic of, “What if this is more than a migraine?”

It didn’t help that as it was coming on, Joey was texting me things like:

“I’m getting these weird spots in front of my eyes…and I can’t remember anyone’s name.”

“I feel really nauseous.”

“I just got a nose bleed.”

Is it just me, or is an unexplained nose bleed like, the SCARIEST symptom ever? Bleeding out of face orifices just makes my mind automatically jump to “The brain is bleeding.” Egads.

It didn’t help that when I googled his symptoms, Dr. Internets was like, “It’s either a migraine…OR A BRAIN TUMOR!!!!”

Thanks a lot, Dr. Internets.

Eventually he called me from the nurse’s office asking me to pick him up. (He works in a school…yes, it was kind of adorable to pick him up from the nurse’s office.)

When I picked him up, he was in bad shape. He couldn’t focus on anything and couldn’t stand or lay down without feeling nauseous. The nurse had given him a few physical test to make sure he wasn’t having a stroke. (SO reassuring…not.) He was also crazy pale. (Which is saying something considering he’s usually a steady shade of Irish.)

On the way home, I got him some Excedrin Migraine. He took one and went to sleep for a solid three hours. Like, solid. Like, I-had-to-keep-checking-to-make-sure-he-was-breathing-deep sleep.

He was pretty much out of commission for the rest of the weekend, though nothing was as bad as that first day.

Since then, he’s had a CT scan and gotten blood work done. The CT scan came out normal (no tumors or bleeding), and he gets the results of the blood work today. He has to have an MRI next week. (He had a really bad concussion when he was younger, and apparently he was supposed to get one a year after that. Guess what his doctors never told him?)

So the point is, he’s OK. He might be having some issues with scar tissue from the concussion, but we won’t know that until next week. But he’s OK.

All right, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, can I just tell you how completely terrifying the whole ordeal was? I mean, I know he was freaked out. There’s nothing worse than something being wrong with you and having no idea what it is or what to do to make yourself feel better. And top that with knowing it has something to do with your brain? T-E-R-R-I-F-Y-I-N-G.

As for me, I hadn’t really felt relaxed until he had the CT scan, and I’ll still a bit apprehensive until he gets an official diagnosis. What if something was seriously wrong? What if something happened to my best friend and love of my life?

I think the craziest thing about our life after marriage has been realizing that we really do fall more in love with each other every day. (Sorry, should have warned you this would get mushy.) But in all seriousness, our relationship is a thousand times stronger than it was the day we said “I do.” And I’m sure that in another eight months, it will be a thousand times stronger than it is today.

Throughout this whole ordeal, I had to actively keep myself from thinking about “the worst that could happen.” Because the worst that could happen is literally the worst thing I can imagine happening. I think what I’m trying to say is that having our immortality and the fact that something very well could be seriously wrong made me realize even more how much he means to me. And I cannot begin to tell you how relieved I was when he told me everything actually was fine.

Ugh, sorry, didn’t mean to get all heavy on you. (And on a Friday no less…) I’ve just been carrying this around in my head for a week and needed to get it out. Anyone have any similar experiences (or even just something heavy they want to let go of)? Feel free to leave a comment so we can all have a cathartic moment together.

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Bang it out

You guys know I can’t make a major hair decision without consulting you first.

Plus, I mean, I know you love being a part of the decision, right guys? …guys? Bueller?

Anway, here’s my dilemma (to the fifteen or so people who care and are still reading…): Bangs. Yay or nay?

The fact is, I’ve had bangs for probably 85-90% of my life in some capacity. Exhibit A:

I know, I look like an elf. I was a petite child. (And seriously, why could my hair have not just stayed that color?)

But see? Rocking the bangs despite being alive for less than three years.

I could go through a whole montage of me with bangs over the years, but I was a late bloomer, so that’s just way too many awkward years for me to relive this morning. Just trust me, I’ve almost always had them.

I had bangs at my wedding:

But after that event, I kind of “decided” to grow them out. I use quotes there because it wasn’t like, an active decision. I just didn’t keep up with cutting them. As of right now, my bangs are about as grown-out as they’ve been since I was 12. (Sorry, no photo. That’s smack-dab at the start of the awkwardness.)

But I kind of miss them! Mostly when I see pretty photos of girls with bangs on blogs and Pinterest. (Natch.)

I like bangs because they make you look like you have a hairstyle even if the only maintained part of your hair is the front bit. Plus, very rarely do I pull all my hair back off my face, and I think a bit of fringe frames everything nicely. Plus, you get to look like this:

(Ignore the weird face…focus on the bangs.)

Cons: Sometimes my forehead gets greasy and then my bangs get greasy and then I look gross. Plus, when I DO want to pull all my hair back, it requires a lot more bobby pins. Plus, you get to look like this:

Well…ok, maybe I don’t look exactly like any of those photos no matter what. But you get the point.

So you see my dilemma. (Or you’ve stopped reading.)

Can I get some input from girls on both sides of the fringe debate?

Like my hair style? Follow my Repunzel board on Pinterest so we can obsess over our hair together. Come on, it’s fun!

Party bloggin’ in the house tonight

So I check my blog stats fairly often. Not often enough to be considered obsessed, but often enough that I can probably give you a pretty accurate ball park of where the numbers are at any given time during the day.

On one hand, I just like little charts and graphs and seeing where everyone is coming from. On the other, it’s just nice to know that there are actually people reading this nonsense.

But even though my stat guesses are usually pretty accurate, for a while I was getting pleasantly surprised every morning at how many people had visited the night before. I would go to bed at around 2-something, and wake to well over 300.

What was the source behind this bizarre (yet pleasing) phenomenon? Today at lunch, my husband and I concluded it must be my West Coast readers.

Me: That makes sense.

Him: While we’re sleeping, they’re partying all night.

Me: Oh yeah?

Him: Yeah. Party blogging.

Me: And what exactly does party blogging look like?

And then he demonstrated (I guess pretend he’s looking at a computer screen ha):


God love that man.

So question to all you party bloggin’ West Coasters: When are you reading my blog? Is it after 11 EST?

Merging and other stresses

I’ve been trying really hard not to complain as much on here. I mean, in the long run, I’ve got things pretty great.

But can I just whine about something for a teeny, tiny minute?

Ok, so we all know that my commute is much better than it used to be. The whole shebang has been cut down from almost two hours each way to more like 45 minutes each way. It’s not like I’m teleporting (YET), but it’s definitely a time saver. Plus, I’m not paying exorbitant fees to be crammed into a tin can with Everything That Is Wrong With The World. Sure, I have to pay more attention and the chances that I’ll get in a car accident have increased exponentially, but all in all, it’s a more comfortable ride.

It is not, however, perfect.

This morning I actually narrowed down the one thing that makes me the most anxious about driving: merging.

Oh lawdy, do I hate merging. Especially here, where drivers are just generally insane.

When I first started driving, I was actually extremely paranoid about it, and I always made sure that I was just in the lane I needed to be in at all times. If I knew I would be turning left, you can bet I was in the left lane from start to finish, regardless if the right lane was moving quicker or not.

As I got more comfortable with driving, I also got a little more comfortable with changing lanes, though it is still my natural inclination to just get in the lane I need to be in no matter how far I have left to go on the road I’m currently on.

Of course, there is a big difference between highways in Iowa and highways here. I’m probably going to get crap for this, but I’m just going to say it: People in Long Island are terrible drivers.

There, I said it.

I’m dead serious. In Iowa, everyone is so polite. They signal. They let you into their lane. They obey traffic laws.

Here? Not so much.

Everyone thinks their own agenda is so much more important than yours. They speed. They swerve into your lane unexpectedly. They pretend they don’t see you signaling because GODFORBID they be delayed for the three seconds it would take to let you merge. In general, they suck.

So anyway, what all of that leads me to is the most stressful part of my commute, which is where I have to merge onto an off-ramp to get onto a different highway. It is always ridiculously congested, and it requires you to be that guy if you want to get in. Not sure what I mean by that guy? I’m just going to let this illustration explain:

Ok, so we all agree that we HATEHATEHATE when someone does that, right? Like, actually want-to-shake-them-violently hate them, right?

Well, here’s my dilemma. You HAVE to be that guy to get into this lane. I always try to lessen the blow by not waiting until I’m all the way at the front of the line to cut in, but you still have this moment where you have to just pick the car you are basically going to cut in front of, and even though I know it’s all in my head, I always feel so awkward doing it. (And thus ends the longest, guiltiest sentence ever.)

I mean, one minute I’m floating out there in my lane, the next minute I’m all, “I choose you!” and darting in front of them, hoping they’re not one of those jerks who keeps facing forward and being all like, “Nope, just me out here in traffic! I certainly don’t see anyone to my left trying to get in my lane! Just accelerating for no reason! Yup, yup, YUP!” (Wait, no, THAT was the longest sentence ever.)

I know you see me. You know I know you see me. I know you know that if you were in my position, you would hate me for pretending not to see you. Ergo, I don’t like you.

Anyway, after I finally get on the off-ramp, the commute is basically over. I take a few deep breaths, congratulate myself on remaining somewhat calm, and proceed to work.


Except when someone decides to actually be that guy in the above illustration and dart in front of me right before the off-ramp ends. Way to be that guy even more than I was that guy.

I try not to actually get irritated about it. I try to remember when I was the person who just needed to get onto the off-ramp, and how stressful that was. But mostly I just succeed in lowering my irritation from full-blown road rage to silently stewing and shooting withering stares at the rude driver.

Add onto all that my new-found paranoia about getting rear-ended again, and I’m pretty sure my blood pressure rises a few notches every time I approach that exit.

Le sigh.

So anyway, that’s all I wanted to complain about today.

In happier news, Benny should come home today! Plus, we’re FINALLY getting the credenza/china cabinet on Friday. So this weekend will be a put-together-the-dining-room weekend. Plus-PLUS we’re going to a hockey game and have plans on Sunday. All good things.

There. Being positive makes up for the whining, right?

Swank it up

Aaand just because I know I have readers out there who are like, “What IS this, a DECOR blog? That is NOT what I signed up for!”, here is a post that has nothing to do with decor.

So I have a party coming up, right? And it’s a pretty darn swankified occasion. Cocktail party attire is mandatory. (You hear that, guest list? MANDATORY.)

Plus, I’m rather enamored with this sequin trend that is basically EVERYWHERE even Wal-Mart. (Don’t believe me? Check it.)

So anyway. I want sparkly. (It goes with my theme, duh.)

So I bought this:

To me, nothing says “PARTY!” quite like a sequin skirt. But just to keep things from getting too disco ball, I’m going to top it off with some kind of black, 3/4 sleeve sweater and probably throw in some black tights.

And because I plan on being the perfect host (or at least as darn close to it as I can get), I think the perfect finishing touch is this Kate Spade-inspired top knot hairstyle:

Gahhh so cute. Here’s hoping I can pull it off. I may even have to mimic those oversize necklaces too.

So spill. What’s your party look this season?

Dining in style

So if you read my post from this morning (and if not, what are you waiting for?), it’s probably pretty clear that my living room is done in terms of decor.

I should probably be a little embarrassed at how much joy fills my heart every time I look at those curtains, but sorry I’m NOT sorry. Those things were a labor of love.

Anywho, that room is looking superb. I’m sure, with enough time, I’ll come up with stuff that needs to be done (I’d like a trunk-like coffee table for more storage and a better organizational system by the desk…), but for now I am quite happy to let things be.

In that room at least.

The next project to complete before the party I mentioned is the dining room.

We STILL have not gotten the credenza for the dining room yet. Long story short, it’s now a full china cabinet and not the one pictured in that old post. But it will be a lot more storage space, and I think it will give the whole room a touch of traditional/vintage style. I’m excited. But the truck we need to pick it up broke down last week, so now we are supposed to get it Wednesday. Barring any additional disaster. (Disaster being relative. It’s not exactly a tsunami, after all.)

The point is, the dining room is next on the decor docket. And, naturally, I have BIG plans, folks.

The color palette will be similar to what I used for the living room (the rooms are connected after all). Here’s a refresher in case you missed that post:

The only difference will be adding in a few brighter greens through art and accessories. Here’s what I’m thinking:

These curtains:

The biggest thing I learned from adding the curtains in the living room is what a big impact draperies can make to warming up a room. And I can tell you know that I will never not hang curtains from the very top of the wall again. It makes the whole space look huge and softens the harshness you can sometimes get from plain white walls. (Actually, the new curtains have even changed my opinion of those plain white walls. I kind of like them now. Crazy what the right linens can do, right?)

So anyway, these dreamy coppery curtains will be a welcome addition to the bare dining room. The room is actually quite spacious, which is why our old too-small server wasn’t doing it any favors. A more prominant storage piece and bold draperies will go a long way in making it look less, you know, like a prison cell.

Next, adding color! (Because black, brown, white, and orange-y brown just ain’t cutting it in the pretty colors factor.)

I’m going to use some of the leftover fabric from the living room curtains to make a runner for the table. The light grey color will also tie in the silver curtain rod we have in this room.

To bring in the green, I want to get a large green vase (like this one recommended by Emily at Go Haus Go!) to put in the far right corner by the window. I’m not exactly sure what I’m going to put in it, but I’m thinking something like these to tie in the brown of the china cabinet:

I’m also going to change up the art on the walls a bit. First, a friend is painting us something similar to what you see here (more on that later):

I’m thinking I’ll hang that on the wall facing the china cabinet. I want to put a bigger something next to it. Maybe a gold mirror like this:

Or a vintage-y map like this:

Something big. I also have a few vintage ad posters in on hand, so I’ll see if I can work in one of those too. (I’m thinking of hanging whatever posters I don’t use in the dining room in the kitchen to give that blank slate a bit of style.)(In case you were worried about the other posters feeling left out…)

Then all there will be left to do will be change the lighting a bit and add a cheap white rug from IKEA.

And THEN the room will be ready for company. Which is good because as of today I have about three weeks before said company arrives.

Anyone else find themselves pressured to finish those projects you’ve been putting off when guests are on the way?