Paint It Black

I’ve made no bones about my love for the Rolling Stones.  Well, the time has come for me to see them live (while they’re still alive!!) when JT and I plus some friends depart for Desert Trip.  To say I’m excited does not do justice to the range of emotions I am experiencing … I am ready to dance my ass off and jump up and down until I can’t walk the next day (wouldn’t be the first time, might be the last time).  Living a five hour drive from Southern California has been pretty sweet.


So, I have been cranking the tunes and getting some projects done around the house in advance of our friends’ arrival (they’re flying into PHX and we’re all trucking it out to Indio)  While we were working on some projects in the music room hanging shelves and artwork, “Paint It Black” came on our feed and I though it might be the perfect song for our new lounge.  While I know this is actually a song about a young girl’s funeral, I just think the Rolling Stone’s and Charlie Watt’s drum beat were guiding me to the perfect color for this room.

So, as a refresh, we started here:

That was sort of around move-in mess, I guess…. those were some of the only “befores” I kept around.

And now, here we are:


It’s like a little aerie as the windows wrap around the corner and it sits on the second floor facing towards the street and above the front door.  The side window has a great view towards the mountain and we originally had the desk right there but it gets too hot.


The Danish Daybeds make a perfect spot for lounging and I love having them side-by-side.  I added a few blankets and cover for dog protection as this is one of Shenanigan’s favorite perches.  It’s hard to believe these daybeds are the same ones I scored off Mister Modtomic all those years ago.


JT installed guitar “swing” hooks into the stud for secure guitar storage/display.  He still has a bunch of guitars in STL that need to make the trek to PHX … anyone up for a drive?  The wall shelves are from Ikea, the “Skogsta”.  The wood tones help warm things up against the blue-black walls.  This is the darkest wall we have done to date.  I thought about doing the ceiling too but my arms just weren’t up to it.


We have a lot more space than our first house, that’s for sure … remember that music room?

Image 10

I sure do miss those fans though!  We still have the ugly ones upstairs in the new house…

So, there just seems to be something about a music room and a moody wall color that works for us.  It’s helped to have a dedicated work space also for days when JT remotes in from home or when I need to work late and would rather be in my pajamas.  The TV is mounted on a swiveling wall mount and so it can be pulled out for watching TV/playing Playstation from the daybed or we hook the computer into it and use it as a second screen (like now, as I type).  It’s turned into a very flexible and multi-functional room, which is great.

Next stop, Rolling Stones!!  Paint it Black!!  (Something about WordPress is not letting me link to the YouTube song and I can’t find the song in our iTunes library either).  Go forth to the internet and search up some Rolling Stones! I’ll leave you with my other favorite:

Cheers!!!! CT

What about all that stuff?

What stuff?


My Etsy store has naturally wound its way down — turns out that finding an item, photographing it, editing the photos, posting it and then packaging and shipping it just to maybe make between $7 to $12 dollars wasn’t a great use of my free time when my day job already requires a lot from me.

However, I’ve still been slowly amassing cool thrift finds and that doesn’t mesh well with the journey to minimalism that JT described the other day.  So I’m going to try out a local pop-up vintage market and see about having a stall once or twice as a way to sell off items to good homes.  I still have to do the application and get all squared away before I want to delve into any more details but I think it could be a great solution to all this cool stuff that is lurking in our closets and our garage (no basement here!).  I plan on using the pop-up as a way of culling down some of our other items as well – now that we’ve moved twice in the last three years, there’s some treasures from our STL house that I can already tell won’t really fit into our new house (like the three piece vanity mirror I had in our STL bedroom among other things).


I set a lot of it up to take some photos for my booth application and I noticed a pretty strong color/material palette …. what can you say, the heart wants what it wants.

And on the outskirts of the frame image, this is happening:


Yep, it will be good to start getting this stuff transitioned into new homes!

Also, Rebel … she’s still learning how to use pillows.  I’m pretty sure she was an outside dog before (not anymore – this is Arizona for chrissakes).  The ceiling had another leak which the plumber deemed to be “Phantom Leak Syndrome” (for real, what a joke) and so we’ve had the rug rolled back  and she seems to like the backing side better than the rug side. She’s a silly one.


This was after her first trip to the groomers.  I think it was somewhat traumatic for her shy self but much-needed because she was getting pretty matted.  When she came back home, she was grumpy and pretty much slept all day.

Have a great rest of your week.  Cheers!  CT


Well I took the third and final test for my NCIDQ certification today (National Council for Interior Design Qualifications), the day after my (uneventful because I was studying/practicing like crazy) 36th birthday.  It was an eight hour sprint of hand drafting and problem solving and I somehow miraculously survived despite being a year older.  What the results are remain to be seen (14 to 16 weeks!) but I’m so relieved to have that strain off my back for a little bit.

Have a great rest of your weekend!  JT is gigging tonight with “Radio London,” an 80s group he plays guitar in, and I was excited to go see him play but I am too spent to move off this couch.


I think the dogs and I are going to catch up on some “Friends”.   I love the 80s but I think I may be more of a 90s girl!

Cheers! CT



Introducing … Rebel!

We have been on the fence for a few months now about adopting another dog.  After losing our beloved Sophie earlier this year, we didn’t want to rush into anything and we definitely didn’t want a rebound dog.

But …. life with just one fur baby didn’t seem quite the same and Shenanigan seemed mopey and under-stimulated.  He began to be very finicky about eating and we were worried about him.  So, what could be the solution to all this?  Rebel!


We adopted her from Lost Our Home Pet Foundation (her name was originally Wilma).  I had started volunteering there a few months ago and she seemed too timid to last long in a hectic shelter environment.  I’ve always had a thing for the shy guys, the ferals or the almost-ferals.  It turns out Rebel is an almost-feral because once we got her home, she was terrified of the stairs and any new noise (the TV) or movement (the sliding door) seemed to shrink her into herself a little bit.  She thought her reflection in the mirror was alternately a friend or an enemy.

Our solution worked for Shenanigan though – he’s been playing with her a little bit (which is actually a lot for him, he was afraid to play with Sophie as she could be kind of rough) and exploring the yard a lot more and eating all his food – it’s like he is showing off for his new little sister.

A package of (gross) lunch meat turkey later and she knows how to use the stairs.  She is settling in and her shyness is starting to fade away a little bit and revealing a goofy and sweet personality.  It’s never a dull day at the Living Analog abode.  Cheers!  CT

The Road to Minimalism

By now you may have seen CT’s mention on a previous post of the new air conditioner we just had to buy. It was a painful experience, but in the scheme of things it was something we had to do in order to “maintain” this home. Here’s a pic of the massive building-sized heat pumping robot terminator fandroid:

Over the past few months, CT and I have been thinking a lot about the things we have bought and surrounded ourselves with, and the lengths at which we have to work and stress the hell out just to “maintain” all of these things. In American society, it seems like our idea of standard of living can simply be boiled down to making sure you make enough money, virtually any way you can, in order to surround yourself with stuff you probably don’t really need. For a lot of us, that means working a soul-sucking and intrinsically meaningless job that causes us daily sadness and fear.

I’ve thought a ton about what it is that I need. I know I need CT. I know I need to eat everyday, and have some kind of indoor human habitat. I need to do work that has some kind of redeeming purpose, where I can be creative. I need to feel free and happy. That’s it.

Does a big screen TV fit into my needs? No. Do I have one? Yes. Do I need to own a huge house and fill it with furniture? No. These things can be super fun, but I don’t need them.

This being said, CT and I are going to begin our journey towards minimalism. We have chosen to not be held hostage by our things, and choose for the rest of our lives to be more of a journey. What does this mean? Well, that really remains to be seen. I think the answer to that might be different for all of us. Anyone else having the same feelings?

When it rains, it pours (sometimes through your ceiling)

Oh, the joys of home ownership.

Like when you joyfully spend $1700 to have your attic re-insulated.  A giant truck (literally almost as tall as the house) appears in your driveway, bales of insulation are sent through a chipper and it is all piped via a gigantic tube through your second floor window and up the ladder into the depths of the attic.


(Oh and the city just repaved your street the week before so you had the joy of being awoken at 6am by other large trucks milling down the street for two days straight and are trapped in your driveway and late for work one day.)

Followed by the joy of a bulge appearing in your living room ceiling, a la “Stranger Things”.


And the next morning the bulge is bigger …


And when you poke it, water pours out.  Such joy.  As in, most likely your hall bath toilet is leaking and you need to tear open the living room ceiling to find the leak.


And then, as you sarcastically type a post about the joys of home ownership, your husband informs you the motor on the heat pump is not working and that’s why the house is so hot today.  Excuse me while I call the HVAC folks and inject some joy into their day …

Cheers – CT



The next living room change is …

As I mentioned in the last post, I foresee some changes happening to this room as it has started evolving more rapidly since the addition of the area rug.  The paintings are still safe for now but JT and I have discussed a re-do. (He’s on board, gotta love that guy.)   Instead we had an out-of-the-blue, spur-of-the-moment, why-the-hell-not ottoman makeover project on our long Labor Day weekend.

It started a while ago, when we got the new sofa.  We’ve been loving this thing and basically live on it (I’m typing from there right now).  We thought an upholstered ottoman might be more comfortable than the Ikea Strind for general lounging about – the Strind has two large glass panels that have somehow survived two moves but did take out JT’s smartphone once – and on a half-off Saturday at Goodwill we came across the perfect candidate. Will you look at that, it actually fit perfectly into the truck.  (Can you tell we’re kind of in love with our truck?  #trucknerds)


If your eagle eyes can read that Goodwill tag on the ragged corner of this bonded-leather beauty, you are correct that it says $5.99.  And don’t forget – it was half off day!  So this ottoman only cost $3.00!  Not quite because we still had to purchase fabric as I wasn’t keeping it in THIS condition but not too shabby.

While we still had “the thing” penned up in the back of the truck and airing out from the eau-de-Goodwill, we stopped by Joann for the next purchase.  JT was definitely the only man in the store and he marveled at the size and quantity (and need for) so much crafting stuff.  Or maybe he was more perplexed than marveling.  Your call.


We found this great Nate Berkus fabric that should have been $45 for our three yards but we scored for $22.50 thanks to a major Labor Day sale.  So let’s bring our ottoman price up to $25.50 and call it good.  I also bought the buttons shown in the picture above but decided once I had the thing upholstered that I didn’t want them.

Then began the disassembly process.  JT tackled the much-abused base with some Restor-A-Finish we had on hand from the Danish Daybeds.  I removed a percentage of the staples (especially around the corners where I knew we would need to be adding more staples back in) and the black tack fabric to remove some bulk.  We left the bonded leather in place and cut the tufting buttons free from the inside of the frame.  The fabric cutting and sewing process did not get photo documentation but took the span of about five Friends episodes and ended with a locked up sewing machine about one inch from the end of the last seam.  I need to take the machine in to get oiled and serviced, it’s probably about time.

Once the bottomless cube was (imperfectly) sewn up (and please note I was careful to choose a fabric that would disguise my low seamstress skills), it was time to stretch that baby onto the (heavily Febreezed with my own homemade concoction of vodka, vinegar and lavender essential oil) base!  We used our trusty Stanley staple gun with 3/8″ staples and pounded in any stragglers with a hammer.  The staples didn’t have any trouble going through both our new upholstery and the bonded leather (or vinyl?) so I’m glad we didn’t go to the pain of removing the original material.  I included the last picture above to highlight JT’s drill bit extender – this has come in really handy when you need to attach screws in a deep pocket like this frame had.

And the afters!  We’re loving it and definitely changing out our paintings to get rid of the mossy greens and clay colors.  And that wet bar … I’ve got my eye on that catch-all-junk, 80s eyesore of a wet bar.


There’s starting to be a lot of pattern going on in this room and we considered going with a milder ottoman fabric but we figured for the price we might as well “go bold or go home” as they say.

Then I styled it up with a tray I had on hand and some of the items that were living on the coffee table before.

There you have it – the living room has morphed again.  All while Shenanigan gave us the cold shoulder from his puppy pillow perch in the corner.  He is still mad at us for a camping “adventure” we had Friday night near Flagstaff.  Needless to say he was not a happy camper and so we cut the trip short and so our ottoman project was a great diversion on a long weekend.  Have a great short week and we’ll be back at the weekend before you know it!  Cheers – CT