A New House?

Wednesday, 24 February 2016

I'm learning folks...

I am learning that building a house is a balancing act.

Balancing: wants, needs, money, limits.

Who wants to do that shit? (excuse the language)

Guess we do, since that's what we signed up for when we purchased a piece of land.

After four-ish months, we got our first quote back from a contractor on the plans we had drawn up. (http://www.mainlandhome.ca/2015/11/house-plans-and-thanks.html  ...remember this one?)

It took my breath away.

It was basically a reality check.

Reality sucks, sometimes, eh?

I mean, in the end, I am trying to be positive: we own a house currently. We aren't being kicked out, evicted..There is a lot to be thankful for.

But it's a kick in the stomach, when you spend four months, hoping and waiting. Telling yourself you have to live in this small space for just a little longer....only to be like...I think we will never have a time when we can have guests stay in our house....I am pretty sure that hockey gear and biking gear will always be in view in my kitchen....etc.

We are waiting on a quote from another contractor we have been working with.

Then.....I assume we will start working backwards...try to look at changing things to reduce prices to a manageable level.

It's a toughie....do we wait? Do we move forward?

I really don't know at this point.

Not exactly the update I was looking to write!

Thanks by standing by!


Greek-Inspired Barbecue Chicken

Monday, 22 February 2016

The Perkins household has been trying to eat a lot better, after an indulgent December and January (ya feel me?).

Lately, this means green salad with mixed veggies and protein for lunch. ooh....fancy?

We have been making a huge salad on Sunday evening and putting it in a large tupperware container in the fridge.  This lasts us for 6 portions of salad or so...and really makes lunch prep a lot easier in the morning.

Green salad, alone, is completely unsatisfying to me.

I need something to keep me from digging in to our communal chocolate stash at work. (I admit, sometimes it still happens, regardless...)

Lately, A. and I have been loving Greek-inspired, marinated chicken breasts.  It also works awesomely, with pork tenderloin.

Super simple, super delicious...super garlicky.

Your welcome.

Here it is:

- 4 chicken breasts (I am sure you could use thighs or similar)
- Juice squeezed from one lemon (I recently bought a cheap lemon juicer from winners...amazing! )
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 4 -6 large cloves of garlic, pressed or minced (You really gotta get aggressive with the amount of garlic in this one)
- 1 tsp of dried oregano or a heaping amount of fresh oregano, chopped
- 1/2 tsp of sea salt
- lots of fresh cracked pepper

Pressed Garlic in a Sea of Lemon juice

Seriously, the best pepper grinder of life: Peugeot

Whisk all the ingredients, except for the chicken, in a small bowl. In a larger bowl, place the chicken breasts. Generously, poke the chicken with a fork and then pour the marinade over and coat.

Let the chicken sit, for at least half an hour, in the fridge.

Warm up your grill (barbecuing in the winter is seriously the best thing, you can do for your morale) and grill 'til the juices run clear.

Enjoy with salad...or potatoes and bread, with lots of butter and extra carbs....and wine.

Your call.


Hotspot finds in TriCounty

Monday, 15 February 2016

Gah! I hit over 10,000 views on this blog! Thanks! Hope you found something interesting, entertaining or delicious while you were here....

On to today...Fluffy blog post ahead...

I have to say...this is the kinda stuff that I like reading on blogs....random...trivial....related to everything and nothing...

It's a great way to turn off my brain.

So! This post was actually inspired by valentine's day/birthday party time.

As many of you know..it's hard to shop in Y-town...tri-county etc.

But there are some fail-safe shopping places that I have learned (some only recently) to make sure I can get it together...

Feel free to follow along!

1) Winners: So as I said...this was inspired by recent purchases for birthday parties and valentine's. I have recently discovered...Winners has the best freakin' cards. Under $5...as low as a $1...and way better than dollar store and carlton and hallmark cards...cuz let's be honest...cards go in the recycling right quick....but I can't help it...I love them. Bonus: they have a lot of "punny" cards.

Bonus Bonus: I usually find a good deal on something else while I am in Winners (got a summer dress for Emma for $3 the other day).

2) Joe Fresh: I used to be a faithful La Senza underwear purchaser. Then they got bought out by Victoria Secret. The cotton underwear got replaced by a poly-blend and they cut back on costs and started making the gussets the width of my index finger. Coverage was minimal to say the least. Then I came across Joe Fresh undies by mistake one day. It was love. Cotton, gusset that could make a small barbie tent with...(ok maybe not that wide...), lots of neutral, non-patterns (at almost 35, I don't think I should be wearing undies that say "sexy gal" or similar).

Joe Fresh is also my go to for great, reasonably priced, jewelry and earrings. You can't go wrong with a statement necklace and earrings to boot.

$4 earrings I wore to a Christmas party!

3) Dollar store: Baking utensils and supplies. From spatulas, to whisks to parchment paper...

4) Lawton's drugstore. Ok...super vain here...I am a nail polish girl. IMO the best nail polish for staying power (cuz chippy nail polish ain't allowed in a hospital) is OPI....and damn, it is hard to find....and no...not the Nicole Miller's OPI stuff. Different staying power and I am guessing...formula. They sell OPI at Lawton's, as well as their wicked bottom/top coat and their nail polish remover.  (This is the nail polish remover, I use, to remove shellac, when I get a manicure, twice a year).

Cajun Shrimp and Big Apple Red

5) Sandy's gifts. For unique kids toys and gifts..  I don't bring Emma in here.  Very dangerous. Lots of Melissa and Doug, playmobil, art stuff....neat baking stuff for kids..

The best straws, you find at Sandy's...you throw them in the green bin when you are finished with them..

6) Frenchy's. As I have heard my friend Sherrie say before: Frenchy's provides. You need a dress? You find one...you need some pants for your kid ?....yup! You need a joke gift for your friend's 32nd birthday?  A japanese "body massager" circa 1984. Still works when you plug it in...(that one really happened too!).

I am sure there are more that I am not thinking of...what is your favourite surprise place to shop in tricounty?


Valentine's Day

Monday, 8 February 2016

Hi Guys!

As I am sure you are all aware...The V-day is almost here!

Valentine's Day is pretty polarizing.

You have the folks that think V-Day is unnecessary and money-sucking.  It's the "Big Pharma" holiday of February.....like "Big Hallmark"...or "Big Ganong Chocolates".

(If you look up Valentine's Day Grinch in the dictionary...you might see my hubster pictured...  He is an accountant after all.)

I get it. I get it. We should be showing our love everyday...in every way.....and we don't need a lame-ass piece of paper from the dollar store or overpriced rose to say so....yep.

But doesn't that get lost in the shuffle sometimes?

I really like Valentine's Day....not for the chocolate or flowers or cards necessarily...although I do enjoy all of those things...but because it's a reminder to be thankful for the love in our lives...whether it be to our kids, our spouses, our friends, our families. You don't need to have a spouse or gf or bf or whatever, to be thankful to those that love you.

To say...Thanks for sticking around me!

There isn't too much wrong with that, is there?

(Emma after she was interviewed by our friend, Adam Graham re: Valentine's day. She told me the other day that love was when you show other people your privates.....great..)

And honestly?  Everybody's drab February could use some red and pink....even if it is from the dollar store.

And it material goods aren't your thing? Even just verbally sharing something you love about another person is a good gift...because sometimes it's the emotion sharing/vulnerability sharing thing, that's the hardest...

If you enjoy the material goods things...

Check out some etsy favourites:

Heart Garland

 Love Cat
Felted wool Love cat!
I gotta girl that would love these leggings..

Love these Hearts you can wear year round

Punny Cards!
Sweetest Balloon Photo

Hope you all have a wonderful valentine's day...whether you are a fan or not :)


Light Reading #2

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Hey guys!

Been reading much lately?  I have really been trying to read some books lately...and I love it. (I recently read Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff...Super intense...unrealistic/partly realistic discussion/commentary about marriage....fiction of course! Worth a check out if you like long, winding reads....man, I am really selling it..)

But!...lots of super cool, short reads online...

I recently became a subscriber of "Lenny Letter".  This was a project that was spear headed by writer, actor, activist, feminist and overall-kickass woman: Lena Dunham. I have loved Lena since she started her series "GIRLS" on HBO (comedy plus real life shit).

She has a partner in crime: Jenni Konner; a producer and writer for "GIRLS".

Lenny Letter is a twice weekly publication, that focuses on a multitude of issues....anything from politics (Lena is a staunch Hillary supporter), to nostalgic (there is a recent read on Claire's Boutique..where I would buy 10 things for $20), to gender equality, to self love and esteem (see their "Yoga is for every Body").  There are many, many contributors which means a lot of different styles and a lot of different topics...

The reads are pretty quick, but informative, thought provoking, inspiring.... and at times...really entertaining.

What's not to love? (Check out the links!)

The weekend is calling!


Let the Bells Ring out..Let the Banners fly...IKEA!

Monday, 1 February 2016

So I am sure you have heard...IKEA is coming to Halifax!

It's probably not going to be completed before we started building, but it has made me look more closely at some of the furnishings they sell.

We are pretty wrapped up in the dollar amount of a build...however, we cannot deny that we will need to purchase some new furniture if and when we move in.  Heck..even if we don't move in to a new house, we need some new furniture.

Our couch is allll torn up. Kitties like to sharpen their nails on it.  I wouldn't mind replacing the upholstery and using it as a second couch in another area.  It's still wicked comfy and was very well made (We splurged and bought it from Attica). But where we are gonna have open concept and more space; I am hoping for a sectional....see a couple I like here:
Nockeby Sofa

A lighter version from www.muslimahbloggers.com
Norsborg Sofa
From decordots.com

I know grey seems pretty boring and predictable...but honestly I have had a grey couch for about 8-9 years.  It hides a multitude of dirt sins: food stains, nail polish stains, marker stains..cat barf stains....all the necessities...once you go grey...

Plus I have washed the covers many times during Emma's potty training years.

Another area in need:

Our kitchen table was purchased from Walmart when A. and I first moved in together over 10 years ago. It's time....

It has definitely seen better days.

Check out this one I have been eyeing since we went to Toronto this year.

(Sometimes it helps to see it in action, no?)

Plus I just looove IKEA for all the wonderful light fixtures, kids stuff, organizing solutions..

Sigh...I can't wait til it's open!  Plus the food and coffee are pretty sweet.


I have also been checking out some other online stores that ship to Yarmouth (cuz that's a bit hard to find!)

One I like is www.structube.com.

They also have a show room in Halifax so it's a great place to check out their stuff in person.

I love this bed...it's got a low profile (way different then our current sleigh bed), mid century inspired, with some neat detail.

Speaking of beds....

When we first bought this house, we had purchased a bed only a year before from Roger's furniture (remember that place?)....but now...we are getting up on 10 years of having this bed and it's becoming a bit....sinky?

Apparently...that is the life span of a bed...and I am hoping to break out the big guns and purchase a king size mattress. (I wish we would have had a king mattress when Emma was little and spent allllooooot of nights in our bed).

So that will be another purchase.....but hopefully it will worth a good night's sleep.

I am hoping to find some second hand purchases to complement some newer, cheaper pieces....cuz while I would love to be able to purchase all the new furniture from Attica or similar...that's just not reality.

Are you an IKEA fan?

What places do you like to shop online from?