Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Mudroom Update: Sully's Dog Nook

Wow, how is it already June!?  With summer weather coming around, we've been focusing a bit more on our outdoor projects, however we really needed to get all of Sullivan's stuff organized and all in one spot.  We have already had him close to 6 months - time has just flown by!  I was finally able to get his little dog nook set up in our mudroom.  Now it's so easy to find what we need and grab things on the go.

I wanted to keep things simple and clean for our mudroom, but also wanted a bit of color.  I knew I needed a shelf and hooks, and I wanted glass jars for Sully's treats.  I finally found a shelf that was exactly what I was looking for at Ikea - simple and white.  While I was there I found the most perfect hooks ever at a price that couldn't be better!  I am beyond excited!  They also had these awesome glass jars that are great for his treats.

I bought different sized jars to store Sully's treats.  I tried to choose jars that would fit the whole package and chose treats that we seem to buy regularly.

These hooks will be used for leashes and potty bags - used many times a day.  We use the leash for quick in and outs, and the harness for going on walks.

We also needed a storage container for Sully's food.  I wanted it to be stylish, but also easily accessible.  When the dog food storage container first came, it was difficult to get the top off.  I was super bummed  We decided to give it a try to see if it would loosen up a bit, and it has.  I'm so happy it works, because I love the style, and that it fits an entire bag of dog food perfectly.

I love that we were able to find the clear glass jars and not have to spend a ton of money on them.  I really wanted to be able to store Sully's treats in airtight containers, and not have to deal with those messy packages that are hard to get shut and don't always seal all the way.  I also love the idea of displaying them instead of keeping them hidden inside the bench, which is what we had been doing.  Now the bench stores things we don't use as frequently (brushes, large bones, his to-go food dish for when I bring him to work).

I also added this adorable woof container, however I didn't have it at the time I took these photos.  It's a nice place to store Sully's larger treats (like pig ears or Greenies).  I switched it out with the adorable milk glass vase that is holding flowers in the above photo.

I also love that we are able to add flowers in here too!  We aren't able to keep flowers in the main part of our house because our cats will get into them, and most are toxic.  And if they aren't toxic, the kitties will still destroy the plants anyway.  These plants (catnip and cat-grass) are still cat-friendly, just in case.

We're still working on finishing the mudroom, but for now, I'm just so happy this little area is complete.  It makes life with a pupper so much easier, organized, and pretty.

Shopping Resources

Small, Medium, and Large Korken jars from Ikea

Lack shelf from in whilte from Ikea

Bästis dog tail hooks in red, orange, and pink from Ikea

Kardemumma planter with horizontal lines in white from Ikea

Papaja planter in green from Ikea

Milk glass hobnail vase in white from BHLDN

Monday, February 3, 2014

goals for 2014, january, & february

Wow!  How is it almost February It's February already!!!  Where does the time go?!  I was meaning to post something last week when it was still January, but time really got away from me!  Hopefully that means I can get in two posts this week!  I'm still working on my current month's and yearly goals, but haven't had a ton of time to sit down and figure it out.  I thought it was best to get everything down now, since I can always add things, right?!

In the past I have always set "resolutions."  Do this, don't do that, get better at this…you know how it is.  This year I want to focus on POSITIVITY!  My first goal is one for our family, AKA Matt and myself.  I want us to simplify our life.  I still need to figure out what I want that to mean for us and our family.  I did get a fabulous planner this year {link below in February goals}, so step 1 in simplifying is using my planner.

Plan meals for the week.  This was a goal that I was trying to work towards last year and it never really took off.  I wasn't very organized and felt like I didn't have time.  So far, I haven't pre-planned many meals, but we only have January behind us and I am still confident this will take off!  We also want to focus on eating clean and healthy.  Whenever I make something I try to focus on health and nutrition, however I'm always trying to find new healthy recipes that don't take too much time and effort, at least for most meals.  I really want to try to start prepping meals earlier in the week and planning in leftovers as well.  We {I} waste a lot of leftovers simply because I forget about them or don't put the date it was made and I'm skeptical of eating it when I finally come around to it.  I would also like to talk to a nutritionist to get a better idea of healthy, balanced meals.

Matt and I want to be healthy and be more active, so we both decided to add working out to our goals for this year {and I'm going to make it happen!}  I hope he sticks to it as well, because it really helps getting to the gym so much easier when he goes with!  My goal is to work out at least 5 times a week on a regular basis, however its a little daunting to think about getting back into that routine {I was very good at this before my wedding and fell off the wagon after}, so I will start with a goal of 3 times a week.  I was able to make it to the gym 4 times last week!  I would also like to take some of the classes that the gym offers for free, but most of them are at times I work or have class, so I'm hoping to make one class per week!  By the end of the year I want to make meal planning, eating clean and healthy, and working out healthy habits for both Matt and I!

A huge goal for me this year is to be more gracious, happy, and helpful!  I feel like I have been very selfish in my daily life lately, mainly for time.  I just want more TIME!!  I work full time at my job, which is four 11 hour shifts of constantly being busy, plus drive time and fitting in every thing else that needs to be done, while making time to talk with Matt, who works nights.  I feel so exhausted and frustrated by the time I get home, that I'm not very helpful with things that need to be done.  I want to focus more on being HAPPY!  I get to come home to my wonderful husband, kitties, and puppy and a warm, cozy home!  I want {need!} to have a more positive outlook on things like I used to!

Stress less and be creative!  I need to find ways to reduce stress and not take my frustrations out on people I love {mostly Matt since he's with me daily}.  I hate that I do this!  One of the biggest stressors is my job - I love working with pets, however my current job doesn't allow me to be creative.  I am working towards finding a job in the wedding industry, so hopefully something will come along soon!  Without having any creativity at work, it means that I need to try to find time outside of work to be creative.  One idea I'm trying out is this starting this blog!  I've always wanted to start a blog, it will just be a bonus if it lets me feel creative and less stressed.  I also just got my calligraphy kit in the mail!  I'm SO excited to try this out, you have no idea!!  I also have a ton of massages saved up, so I'm going to try and schedule weekly massages!  I think SLEEP will also help, though that means less time with my hubby and babies.  Sleep is for sure something I don't get enough of, which makes most everyone crabby!  I am also going to continue working on styling our house this year, specifically our office and bedroom!  I have been searching for prints, frames, and photos to put up around our home, and I think I'm getting pretty close to making some decisions!

Plan date nights with Matt and get together with friends more frequently!  This will lower my stress and help with all my relationships!  I think its very important to schedule fun things to do with Matt to keep our relationship fresh and fun!  I also need to work on scheduling dates with friends, and try to cultivate new relationships into friendships!  There are people I meet that I have a lot in common with and can have a conversation with easily and at this age making friends is SO difficult.  I want to reach out to those people and if we have the same interests, plan a "date" and do something fun!  Who knows, maybe they will become a lifelong friend!

January Goals:
Figure out goals for 2014 and January
Start a blog
Write one blog post each week {I was so close on this one}
Get together with a couple of my besties!
Search for wedding jobs and apply! {...still searching}
Plan weekly meals
Work out 3-5 times each week {I wasn't close on this at all, except for last week!}
Start puppy class with Sully

February Goals:
Write one blog post each week
Search for wedding industry positions and apply!  {I want one SO bad!}
Have Sully training sessions more than just Tuesdays at puppy class - shooting for 3 days a week.
Take Sully on a walk!  {We haven't done this yet because it has been so cold on our days off}
Be more organized - use my Simplified Planner on a daily basis and plan weekly meals with this awesome app!  Use this app to track workouts and food, and use my FitBit daily!
Plan something fun for my days off with my hubby, even if it is really simple.
Go ice skating with Matt {hoping for something over 20°}!!
Make time to read my many magazines I keep getting
Make one recipe a week from Gwyneth Paltrow's It's All Good cookbook {So excited!}
Schedule a massage for each week in February
Focus on being HAPPY!!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

introducing my hubby, matt!

Photo by Laura Ivanova Photography
Well, here he is folks!  My hubby, Matt!  I could write a novel on him and our story, really, but I thought a shorter introduction would do!  Guys, I love this guy so much!  He's the kindest, most loving person.  Ever.  My favorite thing about him is how much he loves our babies {cuz really, I couldn't truly love anyone as much if they weren't as crazy about animals as I am}!  He has such a kind nature and can get along with anyone.  Seriously, I don't know how he does it!

A little about Matt.... He has two siblings - an older brother and sister, parents who love him, and he grew up with a house full of pets - currently three dogs {two large labradors and one tiny yorkie} and four cats at his parents' place!  He grew up with a Saint Bernard, so he has a love for large dogs, as do I!  He graduated with a bachelors degree in law enforcement a couple years ago.  He realized it wasn't the right career for him, and has since been perusing a degree in computer science {totally up his alley - he was made for it}!  Besides loving animals, he also has a huge love for video games and is a foodie {as am I} and we love going to restaurants, maybe a little too frequently.  We both love going for walks around the lakes in the summer and LOVE snow, though neither of us get outside to play in it year resolution maybe?

Photos by Laura Ivanova Photography 
Our story:

Matt and I met in high school when I was about 16 {I actually met him through the guy boy I was dating at the time}.  Matt pulled up in his convertible Eclipse {one of my favorite cars at the time}, and he was shirtless and shoe-less.  O.M.G. for a high school girl, right?!  He was also the sweetest and funniest guy I had met.  The first time I met him was when I had just gotten my first car.  We were discussing how large the trunk was {don't ask me why}, and he decided to get in the trunk just to prove it!  He made himself very memorable - I mean, love at first sight, right?! - and I went home to tell my mom all about him!  We had seen each other a few times after that, had seen how awesome he was with his MANY pets, and that was it for quite a while.  Then, while we were in college, his name popped up on Facebook and I messaged him, just to say "hi" and asked him what he was up to!

After a little messaging back and forth on Facebook we met and started dating!  The first time I told my mom I was getting together with a guy named Matt, she said "wait, is this the Matt?  The same Matt you told me about in high school?"  Yep!  That would be him!  We were hooked on each other immediately and basically haven't been apart much since!  We finished our college degrees, spent many late nights playing video games {yes, I like some of them too!}, and we love sitting outside by the fire or in the hot tub.  So relaxing!  After about 3 years, we decided to build our first home.  We were thinking about getting a townhome, however a single family home really wasn't a whole lot more expensive with the market how it was.  We knew we'd eventually want a single family home when we start a family, so we decided to go for it!

Matt and I lived really close to where we were building our home, so we visited the home a lot!  Almost every day, a lot.  We had an amazing summer watching our home being built and took photos of the entire process {future blog post?}!  When we were getting to the end stages of building, Matt and I went to look at our home.  When we got inside we were pleasantly surprised with a new home!  It was the first day that nearly everything was finished, all the floor coverings were gone from all the wood, tile, and carpeted surfaces, no more plastic over the cabinets, etc. etc.  It was awesome!  Matt and I rushed through the house to see each room as it would be when we moved in.  We ran upstairs into our master bedroom, then our bathroom.  I was so excited about all the tile-work.  We could finally see our little design come to life!

As I was looking around the room, I heard Matt call my name.  I went to walk down the little hallway leading to our bedroom, and there Matt was.  Down on one knee, holding a gorgeous engagement ring, asking me to marry him and be his wife!  It was one of the happiest moments of my life!  The most perfect man in the world was asking ME to marry him.  To be HIS wife!  AHH!!  I jumped up and down, hugged him, jumped into his arms {and banged my knee on the wall}, and we kissed!  What an amazing moment!  We finished looking through the house, and I was all smiles.  We were all smiles!  After we left the house we went to my parent's house and told them the exciting news!  Matt had asked for their permission, but they didn't know when he was going to propose {and neither did he - he was waiting for the perfect moment}!  I just love reliving that day!  I always thought I would see it coming, but I didn't, not at all! I love that I was so surprised!!

Just Engaged!!
Photos by Laura Ivanova Photography
We spent the next two years planning our wedding!  I couldn't wait to start!  Matt was an awesome fiancé throughout the whole planning process.  The best!  He came to every single meeting we had with different vendors, gave his opinion if he had a preference, and left the rest to me!  Exactly what I would have hoped for!  Our wedding was truly a collaboration of us.  Our wedding day was the most magical day ever, and we both wish we could re-live it over and over!  Now it's back to reality.  Matt is back in school working hard towards getting his degree in computer science, playing video games like always, working nights {this actually works out pretty well for our schedules}, and playing with our adorable fur-babies!  He's the most amazing husband, and I'm so happy I get to be with him forever!

Photo by Laura Ivanova Photography

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

my first blog post...ever.

Well, here goes nothin'!  ...Or something, I hope!  I've wanted to start a blog for a while now, and I haven't because it is so daunting.  Figuring out which website is best for a beginner blogger, how to work said website and get it started, what to call it, what to post...and the list goes on.  Today I was reading one of my favorite little blogs {which is also on Blogger and how I found this website}, I just decided it was time to start!

I only let myself take about 5 minutes to think about what to call my blog.  Life as a Reis.  The meaning behind it is pretty simple.  I recently got married, changed my last name, and I am now a Reis {sounds like reese}!  I love my new last name!  Since I don't have a personal company right now, this blog will mainly be about my life or interests {and hopefully your interests as well}, so the name seems fitting, I think!

You may want to take a peek at the about section for a little more about me - I don't want to be redundant.  Some of my interests, and therefore things I plan to post about are:

  • My hubby!  ...maybe not posts specifically about him, but fun date night ideas and how we continue to grow our relationship and marriage!
  • Fur-babies!  With two adorable cats and a growing puppy, the stories and photos never stop!
  • DIY projects from my wedding!  I'm SO pumped to post these!  I knew I was planning on starting a blog soon, so I remembered to take photos.  Hopefully they're helpful and I took enough!
  • Favorite recipes.  I am always on the hunt for healthy, but tasty recipes.  I especially love quick and easy dinner ideas, smoothies, and juicing recipes!
  • Fun DIY projects {inside and outside the home}
  • Home design updates
  • Thoughts, books, blogs to help stay motivated, work towards goals, and be happy throughout this next year!
  • Personal posts about life and goals!
I'm going to try to keep myself on track with these posts!  I have so many ideas for posts!  I just need to stay organized, write things down so I don't forget {typical me}, and make a schedule to follow!  I would love for you to start reading my blog and hope you find the posts interesting, helpful, and inspiring!

Do you have any helpful hints for starting a blog?  How often to post, what you do to keep on track with posting, how to attach my Instagram & Pinterest to my blog {...I seriously can't figure it out, it can't be that hard!}??  Any and all tips and tricks are helpful and appreciated!  I'd love to hear from you!  Just comment below!