Wednesday, April 27, 2011

1st Blogiversary AND a Giveaway!

Today is my Blogiversary. Wow. A year?!? Really. A year.

A year ago today I sat down and wrote my very first post. It really seems like yesterday. I had no idea with my first words of, “Hello World,” that I would begin a new chapter in my life and open myself up to a whole new world (cue Aladdin music) that I didn't even know existed.

I’m really not going to get sappy…at least I am going to try not to.

In the beginning, I really thought this thing was going to be just online journal of what we projects we were working on at the house (that only my family and friends would care to read) And in many senses – it still is. To be completely honest, I thought the whole concept of blogging was really cool… but who would really want to read my stuff? Was I being a little ego-centric thinking that people would actually care to read my silly little blog?

Flash forward a year – I love blogging. I love reading your blogs. I love sharing ideas, memories, and funny stories with y’all. I love the friends I have made. Because of this “silly little blog” I have “met” some wonderful friends… friends that I talk to daily. They have become my blog/twitter family.

In this past year you have been with us while we overhauled our master bedroom. You have cringed/laughed with me as I told you about Hubs’ run in with the chainsaw. You have endured my bad picture taking skills. You have seen my love for barn wood and anything re-purposed. You have given me advice – some that I took, some that I ignored (and probably SHOULD have taken). You have given me support and encouragement when I really needed it. It’s been a great first year.

I am stealing this idea from my friend Katie and doing the traditional one year anniversary gift… paper! I am giving away a copy of The Southern Foodways Alliance Community Cookbook! This thing is full of mouth watering, delicious recipes that are easy to follow, and easy to devour too!

No, the Southern Foodways Alliance isn't sponsoring this.

Just me. I love Food. I love blogging. I love y'all.

Here's how to enter to win! Leave a comment about what makes you smile! You don't even have to be a follower (but it would make ME smile if you were). If you want to enter a second time, you can tweet about it and mention me @BrandiNell. Can't wait to hear from you! The deadline to enter is Sunday, May 1st!

Hubs and I look forward to sharing another year ahead with y'all!
Thanks for sharing in our journey!

Talk soon, friends!


Brandi Nell
& Hubs

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Guest Post: The Serena Series

While Brandi is busy handling some unscheduled home repair, I offered to step in and do some guest blogging. My name is Serena (@TheFriz11) and I've been a follower/admirer of Brandi's projects since we started working together. You can find me blogging over at Venue Vibe where I share wedding and event planning advice. Unlike Ms. Nell, I am wordy, stink at taking before pictures, and tend to do more cosmetic work than hammer and nail stuff.

In a few weeks, I'll be starting a project I've wanted to do for a while - transform my bathroom, which is also the guest bathroom, into a spa-like retreat. To make it interesting, I'm trying to do it for only $100. But before I jump into that, I wanted to show you some of the work I have already done so you can get to know me.

One of the first projects I did at my house was shaping up the backyard. Remember what I said about before pictures? Yep, I don't have one so you'll have to trust me when I say the finished project is better.

Our backyard had these stones, but they were pushed together in a smaller patch and had some rotting wood creating the trail leading into and out of the backyard. I started by ripping up the rotten wood and rearranging the stones to be more spread out.
After I placed them, I took them back up so I could place this "fabric" underneath to prevent plants trying to spout between my design. I use to know the name of it, but I forgot.
Because I was filling the gaps with pebbles, I used garden trimmer to line my pattern so the pebbles escape less.
From there, I just had to add the pebbles!

And the finished project was...

Double project bonus! Here's an example of my inside work -
Once again, no before before shot, but here's the room with the original paint color and I just finished stripping the popcorn off the ceiling

My cats are often the overseer to my projects. I hope Sushi approves...
Anyway, another day of painting and I get these awesome results!

That's a quick sample of my work! I look forward to sharing more with you guys in a few weeks!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Our Wedding Anniversary!

I know what you are thinking... TWO POSTS IN ONE DAY?? Yep! Today is special...

Three years ago today, I became Mrs. Wigley!

I love him more today than I did the day we got married.

The traditional gift for three years is leather. I got him some Georgia Boots. He has been needing some nicer slip on boots for the job site (he's in Costruction Management).

He got me these...

SWOON! I am so obsessed with them. They aren't even the one's I showed him. He picked these out on his own. He knows me all too well.

I am such a lucky girl. Love you, Hubs! Happy Anniversary!


Brandi Nell

Dogwood Weekend

Hi friends!

Happy Tuesday! I hope y'all had a good day.

If you follow me on Twitter, you might know I work for a museum in Atlanta. This weekend the museum had a booth at the Atlanta Dogwood Festival - and I was there working it on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. It was such a beautiful weekend and we had so much fun! I find it very amusing that I get paid to do this...

And help make this...

It's a rag rug flag, woven on a Friendly Loom, using small strips of fabric. It will be sent to our Adopted Troop which has just been deployed to Afghanistan. This makes my heart happy - my favorite part of my job.

We saw tons and tons of people and had so much fun at the same time! The Dogwood Festival is a very large Art Festival. I was so excited to bring home this adorable outdoor piece...

So as you can see, it was a great weekend - even though I was working.

P.S. You won't see a whole lot of huge projects on the house for the next couple of weeks. We had a pipe burst UNDER the slab of our house and it is quite an expensive fix. We are trying to do a "band aid" fix for now, but it is taking some time.

Two of our bathrooms are out of order right now. The only working one is up on the third floor of the house... our bedroom is on the first floor. You can imagine how much fun that must be for us! HA! But we are counting our blessings, at least we have running water in the kitchen and ONE bathroom! It's teaching me patience. HA!

Hope you guys have a great week! Talk soon, friends!


Brandi Nell

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Outdoor Spring Cleaning

Hi friends! I hope you enjoyed your weekend. I am so happy that it's SPRING! This is my very favorite time of the year. We have been outside all weekend and I have been thoroughly enjoying it! We desperately needed to spruce up the outside of the house and today was the perfect day to do it!

I made these wreaths a few weeks ago. I think they look great with the red front doors.

We have Confederate Jasmine growing on the front rails of the house. While I have always loved having this beautiful vine - the portion of it growing up the stair rail really didn't look too welcoming. We went back and forth trying to decide about cutting it - and today we finally made the decision.

I hacked away for two hours today. I am so happy we made the decision to cut it. It looks so much cleaner and more inviting to our guests.

We still have the jasmine growing at the base of the stairs, so we didn't get rid of it all together. I definitely don't think I could have done away with all of it. I LOVE the way it smells when it blooms! A few weeks back we also finally painted the door on the third floor balcony. It was previously black. Now it matches our main front door.

I planted a few flowers at our house, then helped my neighbor plant some as well. We hope to plant more in the next few weeks.

We need to replace the stair treads out front as well as power wash the house... that will come soon too. I hope y'all had a great weekend! Talk soon, friends!


Brandi Nell

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Birthday Recap

Hi Friends! Hope everyone is having a fantastic week! We had some pretty brutal storms last night here in Atlanta. Hubs and I were pretty nervous about the tree in our front yard - but all is well! No damage to be reported!

Sunday was my birthday and I enjoyed a FULL weekend of celebrating!

On Thursday night, my sister Brittney and I went to a lecture and book signing by Kristin Hannah. (**Sidenote: If you haven't read any of Kristin Hannah's books, do so soon. Firefly Lane is so good)

On Friday Brittney and I had an all day Sister Date - complete with Hair Appointments, manicures, pedicures, shopping, margaritas, and lots and lots of laughs. Such a fun day!

Myself (left) and Brittney (right) - A few months back

On Saturday, I helped host a shower for two of my best friends, Marcus and Heather. They are getting married in May and we couldn't be more excited for them!

On Sunday, we (as in 19 of us... yes, 19) went and had brunch at one of my favorite places in Atlanta, Front Page News. It was perfect day for brunching outside and the food was delish... and the mimosas went down pretty easily as well. HA!

On Sunday evening, my Dad and Half Mom, Doris (yes, I call her Half Mom - Disney ruined the term Step Mom for everyone), came up to Atlanta and took us out to dinner. We had a fabulous time... I wish we didn't live 3 hours away!

On Monday, Hubs and I took an extra day off of work and got our lives back in order - It was so nice just to spend the day with him. Ha!

Told you we celebrated all weekend :)I can't remember a better birthday!

I was spoiled rotten by family and friends. Hubs gave me some awesome Nike Running shoes a few weeks back. Brittney and Eric gave me a super cute purse. Dad and Doris gave me some money and the most adorable picture frame - I'll share pics of it once I find a cute photo to go in it. - And that was just my family!! You should see the gifts friends gave me! LUCKY LUCKY GAL to have such a wonderful group of friends and family around me!

Mom gave me another Wedgwood Georgia Historical Plate (SQUEAL!!). I collect the red ones (the website calls them pink - but they are definitley red). I now have six in my collection and can't wait to collect the next six! I love the way they look in my kitchen!

My first five... still need to hang my newest one!

James Oglethorpe - I love them all, but this guy is my favorite

My birthday gift! Old Capitol, Milledgeville, Georgia

Back of the Milledgeville Plate

Did you know they also make them in blue? Check out the full collection here. They are so pretty and so very interesting at the same time! I love, love, love collecting them!

p.s. You may notice some changes to the blog. While we are still doing our DIY projects, it's definitley hard to complete projects to have a new post every week. I want to write about our lives as well. So, I will be posting more often as well. I hope you guys will still enjoy reading about us!

Hope you guys are having a great week! Talk soon, friends!


Brandi Nell