Saturday, April 30, 2011

Sofa Shopping

Today I went sofa shopping. We've had the same couches in our apartment since I moved in almost two years ago and my roommate is eventually moving out because she is getting HITCHED (wooohooo!). I figured it was time for me to start my big girl life, too, starting with a sofa. We all have our quirks, ok? If owning a sofa will make me feel like a grown-up, then so be it. Having a garden also makes me feel grown up, so there!

Anyway, I decided today that it was the day to start couch shopping. My first stop was Thomasville. I had done some researching online and knew that Thomasville had a sofa most similar to my beloved Dr. Pitt Sectional. I popped into the store and found this:

 Canyon Sectional (1313-02)
Thomasville Canyon Sectional
The problem? For what I want, it's about $2500. As I expressed on Twitter, I promised myself I would not buy a $3000 sofa. Could I afford it? Yes. Would it be a wise way to spend $3k? Um, no. So I ooh-ed and ahh-ed and laid on the couch and then I moved on. One day, Canyon Sectional, you will be mine. Unless I buy the Dr. Pitt instead.

Next stop, American Signature Furniture. I've helped several friends with furniture shopping, and all of them have ended up buying from ASF. I really like the store and I went in with high expectations. After a questionable experience with a sales rep (she was nice, but didn't really understand my priorities and made some unnecessary comments), I walked out with 3 potential options.


I walked in being 100% set on a sectional, but I didn't fall in love with any upon first glance. I did really love these 2 pieces though. The picture doesn't do it as much justice, but both of these pieces are REALLY deep. I am 5'9" and when I sat with my back against the sofa, my feet didn't touch the floor. Plus, it was long enough for me to lay down without being uncomfortable! The total price for both of those pieces would be about $1300 including delivery. But, I knew I really wanted a sectional, so I went back for a second look. 
American Signature Furniture Solace Sectional

This was my 2nd find, and I really liked it. It's a sectional, it's microfiber, and it's comfortable! I walked away from this sofa initially because I didn't like that it was lower to the ground (which is my dad's #1 complaint about my current sofa situation) but upon further inspection, it really wasn't any lower than any of the other sofas I sat on. And I did a lot of sitting. The Solace would be about $1500.
The third and final sofa I sat on was the Soho Cobblestone sectional. It's a little smaller than the Solace, and it's less expensive. Grand total would be $1200 for this one. I really like the chaise lounge on this one. It only comes in one color that I would actually consider. Sorry, red is not for couches. The color works for me though. I guess this is probably my 3rd choice.

In fact, as I'm typing this, I really think I like the Solace sofa. I want to take someone else with me to look and just get a second opinion, and I want my mom to run into the store and look at the couches and let me know what she thinks, but I think I have a top choice. Now I have to measure my living room and figure out if any of these things will actually fit!

Stay tuned for Katie's Becoming A Grown-Up Part 3. I don't know what the topic is yet, but I'm sure I'll do something grown up eventually and hopefully live to blog about it. For now, I'm going to go drink wine with my Sunday Funday friends and play card games, because that's what grown-ups do.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

There's more to me than hair & nail polish, I swear

It's true - a girl really hates to change hair dressers. Even more so than my hair though, I am loyal to my nail lady. Like, to a fault. Well, maybe not more than my hair...we'll say equal. Don't worry, Van Michael, I'm still all yours, blonde tresses and all.

Mystical Nail in Buckhead, right next to Johnny's Hideaway is my nail salon of choice, and they have never steered me wrong. First they pointed in the direction of Can You Tapas This? Then when I discovered Lincoln Park After Dark, wonderful Kim who does my nails ordered it for me so she never ran out again after a slight disaster (I couldn't find it on the shelf). Then, yesterday I went in for a mani/pedi and there was a girl in there getting her nails done too. She was having an impossible time deciding what color to get, to the point that even I was like...WOMAN JUST CHOOSE A COLOR AND BE DONE.

And of course the ever faithful staff at Mystical Nail swooped in and saved the day by recommending...

Fiji by Essie

And then I died, and demanded I have it on my nails right now immediately. Forget OPI Not Like the Movies (my most recent obsession), I had to have this. There was no question. And I'm obsessed! I keep looking down at my fingernails and LOVING it! 

I'll update ya'll on my birthday later this week, but I'll leave you with this little tidbit:
Happy 25th to me!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Happy Birthday Week To Me

It is no secret that I love birthdays. More specifically, I love my own birthday, but I really love to celebrate my friends birthdays as well.

Possibly my most significant birthday yet is less than 1 week away.

24th birthday homemade ice cream cake

Last year was a pretty epic celebration. I had all of my closest friends at my house for dinner and drinks and then we headed out to a bar for continued celebrations. I got taken out for birthday brunch the next day and just felt nothing but love. I think that's why I like birthdays so much - it's kind of like Valentine's Day to me. It's a day when you get to go above and beyond.

It's hard to believe I am going to be 25. I think about the time that has passed since I graduated college. It's been an unbelievable 2.5 years. If you would have told me that I would have a job that I am obsessed with, I would have agreed and totally believed you. If you would have told me that I would still be single, I might have died a little bit inside. I'm still amazed by the things I have experienced in my 25 years, and by the things I have been so fortunate to not have experienced. I am beyond blessed, and I give thanks for those blessings every day.

I have every intention of celebrating myself in a major way this week by way of tennis practice, taking pictures of my mom's art (I'll be sure to share the details - we're going to set her up on Etsy, too!), shockingly sharing part of my birthday week with one of my best (and stinkiest) friends, hitting up Sinless Summer Nights at East Andrews, a fun dinner with a great mix of friends, and celebrating another friends next steps in becoming Dr. Kathryn. As I wrote that I realized I'm sharing a lot this week. Top notch friend, that's me! :)

Birthdays are the bomb, and I can't WAIT for the celebrations to begin.

Sunday, April 17, 2011


I bought own domain name yesterday! I know this is probably one of the dorkier things I have done, with staying up way too late making pivot tables coming in a close second, but I am really excited.

I have kind of gone back and forth for a while on whether or not this was something I wanted to do, and I finally decided to bite the bullet and do it. Plus, I actually really like The Secret Life of Katie despite the fact that I came up with it 3+ years ago just before I headed out on my life-changing Spanish adventures.

So, I'm not really sure what this means for all of you. I think you might have to update your Google Reader subscriptions, but that's all. Nothing else is changing, so don't worry, I'll still be oversharing about my life and my friends lives one blog post at a time.

Because I said so. 

Bar Versus Club

Earlier this week, a friend of mine from work invited me and a girlfriend out for dinner & drinks with 2 stipulations: dinner had to be "nice" and we were going to a "club" after dinner. Nice dinners I can do, clubbing is so not up my alley. I'm way more of a bar girl. A dive bar girl. Where I can wear jeans and a tshirt and it's fine. I actually remember more than one occasion in college where I wore a Polo sweater out to the bar and my friends poked serious fun at me. Whatever, it was my style!

So back to last night - we made late dinner reservations at Aria. I had never been, and I was a little worried the crowd would be on the older side of old. Wrong! The restaurant was swanky (I hate that word but it is the best one) with an AWESOME menu. But that's not the point of this post. The point of this post is to tell ya'll that I do not belong in a club. It's just so not my scene. Short dresses, high heels, teased hair, etc. No thanks. Plus, I saw more girls being carried out of the club than I EVER see getting carried out of any of the bars I go to. I think clubs bring out the worst in people. And if there is one thing that is SO NOT CUTE, it's puking in the bathroom and being escorted out.

There were girls walking around in "Easter Bunny" outfits, which was really just a (not very) creative way of wearing short, tight white dresses and bunny ears. And said Easter Bunnies spent 99% of their evening at a 90 degree angle looking like $.02 you know what's grinding against what were likely strangers they met 15 seconds prior. There were girls wearing really tight, short dresses who just shouldn't wear tight, short dresses. I shouldn't either, don't get me wrong, but I didn't try to. There were guys who didn't make any secret out of sizing up the ladies around them, and who had no intention of taking "No thanks, I don't dance." for an answer. And I've seen my fair share of bar makeout sessions, but nothing like the clothes-on-grinding that really is only meant to happen in the privacy of your own bedroom, and probably not on a sofa in the middle of a room where everyone can see.

My question is, why are these places appealing? It cost $10 for girls and $20 for guys to get in, the drinks were expensive and served in plastic-ware, and the crowd was less than impressive. I really don't think these scenarios are specific to the one place I went last night, either. To be fair, we opted not to spend any time in the Latin music room or the techno room, so maybe I was really missing out? Something leads me to believe that I didn't miss much though...

Do you go clubbing when you go out? Or do you much prefer a bar, some good tunes and an ice cold beer? Why? Is it the dancing, the drinks, the exclusivity that makes clubs so appealing? What is it? Inquiring minds want to know.

PS - Next time I go, I'll definitely incorporate a Playboy bunny theme into my outfit. Uncle Sam Bunny? Has a nice ring to it.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Musically Inclined

Remember last winter when I went to 2 awesome productions over the span of a week?

I don't know if I told ya'll, but I then listened to the soundtracks on repeat for the next 2 months, or 1/6 of 525,600 minutes. Sorry I'm not really sorry, poor officemate. We have a music out loud policy, and since I own the iPod and iPod player, I get to pick the music. I like to refer to it as Katie's Office Musical. That could make a great televsision show, just sayin'.  I know I've come so far...but I've got so far to go! :)

Finally sometime around late January I decided that I had finally had enough of Rent and Hairspray and added some Wicked into the mix, which prolonged the Katie's Office Musical Hour another 3 weeks or so.

In March I finally laid my "Showtunes" playlist to rest... or so I thought. I made a new playlist with popular songs that were on the radio. Hey Mama, Welcome to the 60's! But it's been less than 2 months and I've switched back over to the Showtunes playlist. You just can't stop the beat.

"If you fear the storm ahead, as you lie awake, lie awake in bed, And there's no one, no one there to stroke your hand, And your mind, your mind reels, if your face is salty wet and you're drowning in regret...just don't forget."

Anyway, just thought ya'll should know that my secret obsessions are weird and really kind of...obsessive. At least you don't have to listen to me singing along!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

My Garden: Update 2

By now you know that I have planted a garden. I decided I wanted to do it, I impatiently waited (kind of) until I had the time to commit to daily monitoring, sweet-talking, and watering plants, and then I dragged myself out of bed at 8:00 on a Saturday morning to purchase my plants, pots, and soil.

So far I've succeeded in killing off one pot of plants:
This poor dude is (I think) cucumbers. I will take full responsibility for their death, but let me explain. See that tube on the left? You pour water into it, and the water collects underneath a shelf on the bottom. As the plant soaks up the water, the little stem-like indicator drops. Then you know you should add more water! It's really ingenious. Well, I didn't connect mine so well apparently, so I just kept pouring and pouring water into this pot and the water level never seemed to rise. I have not touched this plant in almost 2 weeks and the soil is STILL soaking wet. Poor little guy never stood a chance.

But everything else is budding and flowering and prospering beautifully!

Broccoli, day 1

Broccoli, April 13
It's hard to compare those 2 pictures - sorry about that. I will be better about my photography for comparison purposes. But I swear, those broccoli are growing like crazy! The little plant in there with them has seen better days, but if my brocs are growing that is all I really care about!

Peppers! Growing, budding, flowering peppers! I squealed when I walked outside and saw their little buds a few days ago. I am actually really surprised these are doing so well, because this is the one pot that doesn't have it's own fancy watering system. I must be a pretty good plant-mom, because these are still alive and quite kickin'. Grow little peppers!

Cabbage! Big, fluffy, growing cabbage. It's hard to notice a change in this bad boy. My patience is waning...

A demonstration of the water level indicators. In the first picture, I pushed the twig down. In the second picture, it popped up, indicating that the cabbage has plenty of water! My only complaint about these is the bright orange if I can't find the water spicket in my 20" in diameter pot. Oh well, Ikea has it's faults too.

And my pretty flowers that I spontaneously just grabbed because I liked them. I kind of want to bring them inside, but I'm afraid they wouldn't survive so well. I should put them somewhere that I can actually enjoy them or SOMETHING. I really want to pick them and put them in a vase, but these are not that kind of flower. Bummer. But they make me smile when I water the rest of my garden!

So there you have it. I am thus far successful in my gardening attempts. I check on my plants about every other day, and most of the time I add water just in case. Heaven forbid they ever run out. I've now started pushing the spouts in just to make sure none of my other plants don't fall to the same death as the unfortunately over-watered cucumbers. Don't worry, I have a whole nother pot of the bad boys, which is why I'm not entirely heartbroken over my loss.

I'll keep ya'll posted on the plants progress next week! In my head I just compared my plant photos to baby bump pictures documenting the progress. I don't know which one is more exciting, considering the chances of me becoming the crazy plant lady are currently pretty high...

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


I love monograms, a lot. I think it started my freshman year of college when my roommate's mom got us matching, monogrammed bath towels. That's when monograms were really, really cool. Then one of my best friends mom's made me a purse out of a placemat, and it had my monogram on it. I loved the heck out of that purse, and I still have it. Not quite the fashion statement it was *ahem* 7 years ago, or maybe it's more of a fashion statement? It's teal blue on the outside and neon green on the inside with matching ribbon straps.

See! There it is!
So anyway, the short story is I love all things monogrammed. Pillow cases, towels, shower curtains, LL Bean bags, iPhone cases (not for $55 though), and everything else I can possibly put my initials on. The problem?

MY MONOGRAM IS SO UGLY!!! None of the letters really lend themselves to being loopy and swoopy in their monogrammed goodness. K's, E's, and H's, you are fired from being monogrammed.

Monograms created here

I guess this is a sign it's time for me to get a new last name...I guess I'll start by finding someone who is willing to date me first, and go from there. People with last names that don't monogram well with K's and E's need not apply.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

What Sunday Should Look Like

Fishing, hoping to catch more than a rubber tire and a rainboot.

Puppies, who really hope you do catch that rubber tire.

Stella Artois and wine.

Family. Friends. Sunshine.

More Stella, more wine.

Airplanes flying way too low, and the realization that yes, when the sun sets that does in fact mean the earth is moving. However, the earth's movement is not what causes the wind. Just in case you were wondering.  

A Chinese food delivery feast.

An incredibly insightful fortune, made that much funnier by the aforementioned glasses of wine and Stella Artois's.

"Try a new hat for a change in looks. Be creative!"

Thanks a lot fortune cookie, you are so helpful.

Thanks to my dear friends for inviting me over, providing me with Stella & wine, and liking me despite my serious sunburn and tennis skirt. Sundays like this one are worth a million shitty Tuesdays.

Friday, April 8, 2011

My Garden: Update 1

Step 1: Fertilize

Add soil.

Empty plant containers into pots.

Add dirt, insert plants.

Don't forget to include the label so you know what is what. These are my cucumbers!

These are just regular old flowers. I just went a little crazy at the store and had to buy them!

Cabbage! The pot is from Ikea, and it holds water in the bottom. You pour the water down the orange tube, and when there is enough the black twig in the tube pokes up. As the water is absorbed by the plant, the twig falls until it is even with the orange tube. Time to refill the water!

More cabbage.

4 little planters all in a row.

The aftermath. Good thing I have a good vaccuum.

So there you have it! I went to Pike Nursery bright and early on a Saturday, I purchased broccoli, cucumbers, bell peppers, and cabbage, plus a few extra plants just because, and I went to town. I may have had to go buy more planters, but that is neither here nor there. It's been almost 2 weeks, and my little plants are still going strong. They even survived the wicked thunderstorm we had a few nights ago.

I can't WAIT to pick some vegetables off these bad boys. Now, as for the 90 degree heat this weekend...scram. You are not wanted by me or by my precious plants.