February 20, 2015

key holder

i am constantly looking online at beautiful "landing spots" in homes. places to drop off keys, mail, &  bags.  i wish so much that we could have one of our own, but we just don't have the space.

our makeshift solution was a bowl on the counter for keys.  i don't know why, but the bowl really bothered me. it created clutter on the counter in a spot that should be clutter free.  it made the area look busy and messy.  something had to be done! we needed something that could go right next to the door.  the only problem is that there isn't much space.  so, the solution had to be small.

to say this project was easy is an understatement. it was super easy!

i had some extra hooks from the arrow jewelry holder i had made a few weeks back, and the wood is from an old pallet that is sitting on the balcony still needing to get broken down .  using the handy "apartment saw" (a mitre box with small saw, which has been so handy for various small projects in the condo) the piece of wood was easy to cut to size.

then i measured out how far apart i wanted the hooks, and screwed them into the wood.  my hooks are spaced 3 inches apart, and i only needed spots for 4 keys. finally, a few screws mounted it to the wall.

the whole thing took about 10 minutes. now we have a cute, simple key holder!  do any of you have the same problem of a tiny entrance? what have you done to keep the area more organized? 

February 12, 2015

[sint maarten]

back in january we got to spend a week down south on the beautiful island of st. maarten.  last week i shared some pictures from the french side of the island.  you can see them here.

this week i wanted to highlight the other side of the island, the dutch side.  while smaller geographically, this side was full of fun things to see and do.

we actually stayed on the dutch side during our holiday, so we got to see a bit more of what the side had to offer.


some things worth checking out on the dutch side:

[hiking guana bay] what was supposed to be an hour long hike ended up taking us 4 hours & to the outskirts of philipsburg.  definitely worth it for amazing views of the island's rugged coastline.

[philipsburg] the capital city on the dutch side of the island is full of shops, restaurants, bars, & beach.  packed with tourists when the cruise ships port, it becomes much more quiet in the evenings.

[guavaberry colada] an island specialty, something we both recommend.  the hut also offers a variety of fun guavaberry-based products including guavaberry rum, hot sauces, liqueur & bbq sauce.

[maho beach] the famous beach where it looks like the planes will land right on you.  it's incredible!

[sun rise] the place we stayed at faced east, so we had unobstructed views of the sun rising over the ocean. it was so beautiful!

have you ever been to sint maarten/saint martin?  any sites you would recommend that we have missed?

February 08, 2015

rom friday night live

last friday a friend of mine invited me to attend the rom fright night live with her.  this was my first time attending it, & it was such a blast!

the place turns into a giant night club, with dj's, live music performances, dancers, drinks, a ton of different foods, and desserts.  you can wander around with a drink in hand & check out all of the exhibits.

here are few not-so-great pictures of the event from my phone:

drinks + dancing + dessert + dinosaurs, what about it would not be fun!

February 06, 2015

cozy coasters

when the temperature gets cold all i want to do is stay inside, drink warm tea, and surround myself with cozy items.  yummy candles, soft blankets, fuzzy socks..  and not come out until spring.  unfortunately, this is not  a reality.  so i spend my time thinking of ways to make cozy things that i can look forward to while i am out in the cold.  that is why i like this project so much, it's simple and adds a cozy feel to the place.

the problem is, my knitting skills are very basic (seriously, reallllly basic!).  other than a stripped scarf, i cannot make anything else.  so any sort of project involving knitting needs to be simple.  that is why i was so excited when these turned out so well.  and the best part, they are machine washable!

each square only took about an hour (note, i knit quite slow)...and it was also a great way to use up some of the scrap pieces of yarn i had.

i used a basic stitch & a single colour for each coaster. for my set, decided to stick with blues & greens.  the size of your coaster depends on your own preferences.  for mine, i cast on 20 stitches, then knit 30 rows.  the finished coaster measures about 5 inches by 4.5 inches.  not a perfect square, which is what i wanted, but easy to tweak to make a square.  i left about 2 inches at the end, so that once the last stitch was knit i weaved it back into the finished square.

there you have it. simple, cozy knit coasters.  have any other fun knit diy ideas?  please share!

February 05, 2015

[saint martin]

at the beginning of the year b & i took a fun trip down south to saint martin/sint maarten to escape the cold and take in some sun, sand, & relaxation.  we wanted to share some of our photos & adventures.

because the island is part french & part dutch, we thought we'd break up our post into 2 parts, starting with the french side.

some things to see & do on the french side:

[marigot] the produce market was great, known not only for its fresh foods but also its variety of spices & real vanilla.

[fort louis] looking down on marigot, the fort was constructed in the late 18th century to protect the town from dutch & british pirates.

[friar's bay beach] a small, quiet beach just north of marigot was the perfect place to cool off with a swim & a few drinks. 

[loterie farm]  a former sugar plantation located at the base of pic paradis, the farm now offers a variety of outdoor activities, including a somewhat challenging hike (in spots) up to some beautiful views of the whole island. 

[baie orient (orient bay)] one of the most beautiful beaches on the island, it has over 2 km of white sandy beaches, bars, restaurants and water activity vendors. definitely worth a visit.