The Adventures of Penny

Penelope already poses for the camera. I know it looks like she is disinterested, but don’t be fooled.

I was nervous that Penny would be a cautious and timid cat. Totally wrong. It took her 2.5 seconds to get adjusted to her new home and she has been hilarious to watch ever since.

Chris and I typically find her in the strangest places.

In Chris’ dresser drawer in the closet. Just hanging out.

In the bookcase. Lounging.

Sneaking into the sink. Caught!

Making dinner. Chef!

She also likes to sit on the trashcan and put her paws on the counter and watch. Today she decided to help.

Trapped behind the fridge. She jumped off the counter and landed on the ground before realizing there was no way for her to escape. I imagine this is what it feels like to have your baby get stuck in a well. Silly girl!

Checking in with her Facebook friends.

These are just the pictures from today! Seriously!  She also decided that she was going to take a dip into the toilet. And a lap around the water heater.

She is such a funny girl. We laugh so much while we watch her play and explore.

She also LOVES food. And begs like a dog.

I totally believe that I found the perfect fit for my little family.

Meet Penelope

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Chris finally let me adopt a kitten. He isn’t much of a cat person so this is a HUGE deal.

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Not much of a cat person, hmm?

I could not be happier.

Penny and I are already BFFs.

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She likes playing with her toys, eating a lot, and cuddling. She hates running water, the noises the AC unit makes, and the sound of dogs barking.

Fortunately for her, I already love her so much that on her first night with us I skipped a run. She should feel special.

DIY: Ribbon Wall

 

So, it’s been a little while since I’ve provided a tutorial. Now that the wedding is way past over (sorry guys, running is all I can think about!), I feel like I should post a little more about the details that went into making it look the way it did. I knew I was a DIY bride from the beginning, but I can’t even count the hours that Chris and I spent tackling projects to provide the perfect reflection of us (thanks Pinterest …). Yes, I did just mention that the man in my life helped me craft. Totally a keeper!

I refrained from posting other tutorials during the planning process, besides the lace mason jar tutorial, because I didn’t want to reveal too much. I wanted to make sure that people would be wowed when they entered the venue and I couldn’t be sure of that had I shared it with the blogosphere. Especially since I like to share Passion & Laughter with the lovely people in my life, I decided it was better to keep my mouth shut til after the festivities.

Let me also just mention that I am the worst person ever at keeping my mouth shut. Even more so when I am SO excited about it. And if its about me. I was bursting at the seams waiting to divulge to anyone who would listen. When people asked about the wedding, I’d be all ‘RIBBON WALLLL’ and they would stare back at me like I’m a weirdo because I was going crazy over ribbon. The next question would always be “well, whats a ribbon wall?” And then I’d just be like “Wait and see!”

This ribbon wall was the crown jewel of my wedding projects.

Important to note that this is totally workable to suit your needs. Adjust when necessary and share yours with me! Chris and I used ours for a backdrop for the ceremony. We we’re lucky and had the structure (featured above) to base our measurements on. Seriously, we went there in January when it was freezing and measured so we were one hundred percent sure! I needed to do this though because on the off-chance our ceremony was moved indoors, it had to be able to fit into two different structures. Also, Chris is 6’4″ so the ribbons needed to fall to a certain length or it would’ve looked weird. We chose 6″. The measurements of the structure were 7.8″ all around.

Now that we’ve cleared that up, let’s get down to business!

DIY: Ribbon Wall

Supplies needed:

Ribbon (varying width, textures, colors, patterns)

Fabric scissors

3 – 1 1/2 in x 10 ft PVC pipe

1 -1 1/2 in x 2 ft PVC pipe

2 – 1 1/2 PVC pipe T joints

2 – 1 1/2 PVC pipe 90 degree joints

4 – 1 1/2 PVC pipe caps

1 small bottle of fabric glue

Spray paint (we chose white)

Diamond dust spray paint (glitter!)

Power sander or sandpaper

Small hack saw

Step one: Measure PVC pipe to desired length and cut with hack saw. We chose 7.8ft for our length. With the ends you just cut off, trim each piece to match the smaller 2 ft piece. This will give you four two-foot legs for the ribbon wall.

Step two: Use power sander or sandpaper to remove any markings on the pipe.

Step three: Spray paint the PVC pipe color of choice as the base coat. Be sure to cover any markings that remain. Spray paint every single piece of remaining PVC pipe for color consistency. Helpful spray painting tip: use something to stand the pipe up straight for even spraying. We used a card table flipped upside down covered in plastic and put each of the pipes on the legs. If you do choose to use the ground, wait until it is dry before flipping over to prevent streaking.

If after the first coat any additional marks remain, apply additional coats until you have reached desired color.

Step four: Spray the diamond dust over the dry spray painted PVC pipe. Follow same procedure as the previous color. Use lighter coats because it can easily get too heavy a coat if you’re not careful. Feel free to do several lighter coats rather than doing it all at once. Be sure to let it dry in between the coats.

Step five: Measure ribbon to desired length. We chose six feet. With your fabric scissors, cut the ribbons. I did mine in a slant rather than straight across to prevent fraying.

Step six: Place the PVC pipe that you’re using as the top of the frame onto the ground. Place the ribbon under the pipe with just a few inches above it, the rest laying below. With the few inches above the pipe, bring it over the pipe and connect to the longer end of ribbon. Be sure not to wrap too tight so you can still move the ribbon freely from side to side.

Step seven: Apply a small amount of fabric glue onto the inside of the piece you just wrapped over top of the frame. Gently squeeze the two pieces of together so the glue can adhere, but again remember not to make it too tight so you can move it along the top of the frame.

Step eight: Repeat steps five through seven for each piece of ribbon to fill the frame to your desired amount. If you want it full, you’re going to do this quite a few times. For a lighter frame, you won’t need to do as many.

Step nine: To assemble the base, take two of the leg pieces (two-foot sections of pipe) and insert them into the opposite ends of the T-joint to create one long piece. Place one of the PVC caps on each of the open ends of the pipe. Repeat process on other side.

Step ten: Insert the longer pipes into the remaining end of the T-joint on both sides. You will start to see your frame form.

Step eleven: Take the 90 degree joints and place on the open end of the vertical pipes used in step ten.

Step twelve: Insert the pipe with the ribbon attached to the open ends of the 90 degree joints. You may need an additional hand for this as the pieces are quite large.

Step thirteen: Step back and admire your amazing work.

Success!

And there you have it. Thirteen relatively easy steps to construct your very own ribbon wall. The best part about the PVC pipe is that it comes apart which makes for excellent transportation since this is expected to be a bulky item. All you have to do is make sure you remember to pack all the correct pieces and assemble when needed.

Chris and I worked diligently on this project. Mainly, I picked out and did everything with all of the ribbon while Chris did the sanding, spray painting and general construction of the large pieces. It’s love. Ha.

On the day of the wedding, we had a slight breeze. The wind pushing the ribbon around was so amazing. It felt like Chris and I were in our own little ribbon world.

I really feel like this could be used for anything. A birthday party, a wedding, a photo booth backdrop, and sort of holiday decor, a cool way to enter a room, etc. If you can think of any other uses, definitely let me know because I’d love to hear them!

Enjoy! And please please let me know how yours turn out!

**All photos were done by Korie Lynn Photography**

Birthday Shenanigans

Chris baked me a cake and lit all the candles. On the 10ft walk over to me, they all blew out except one. Love it.

My actual birth date was filled with a lot of love and happiness.

Cupcakes, flowers, and a new running toy? Consider this girl elated!

To celebrate my twenty-fifth birthday further, I was whisked away to Atlantic City!!

Chris, Jenny, and Kristen conspired together to surprise me with a fun-filled weekend of gambling, comedy shows, and alcohol.

We went and saw Aziz Ansari. If you haven’t heard of him or checked out any of his stuff, you are missing out. I definitely peed my pants a little from laughing so hard during his set.

Chris managed to snag us tickets about six rows from the stage. Definitely no complaints there. [I apologize for shitty iPhone quality photo, but its just for proof.]

We prepared for the show accordingly.

Following the show we went out into the casino and tried our luck at various table games and slots. Personally, I am a fan of roulette. Picking the numbers is fun for me and there isn’t really much skill involved unless you can do probability based math.

Embarrassing Sidenote on Gambling: On Saturday night during my first time ever playing Craps, I hit someone in the face with dice. No joke. My hand was shaking so bad and I lost all control of my arm with adrenaline because I was so focused on trying to hit the back wall … instead I threw the dice up, not down like a normal person would and BAM! I hit some poor innocent player square in the face. Thus ending my future career in Craps dice rolling. Also, I could’ve probably slowed down on the drinking to avoid the future jokes made on my behalf about this situation, but such is life.

The rest of the weekend was spent doing a little shopping, eating, consuming more alcohol, and more gambling.

Being the smartypants I am, I took Monday off to recover. For my own celebration, I treated myself to seeing the Katy Perry movie which I shamefully admit to crying at, doing a speed work exercise, and grocery shopping. A nice change of pace from the last couple of weeks.

This birthday was a lot of fun and I could not be more thankful for the people involved in making it such a fabulous occasion. Seriously, all the love shared on the day and then the weekend with the fun and ahhhh. Getting a little too sentimental and emotional here, but whatevs, I have great people in my life.

What has been your favorite birthday? Why? Have your friends and your spouse ever worked together to plan a surprise for you – party, trip, etc? Let’s discuss!

Twenty-Fourth Year

In a little less than three hours, I will be a quarter of a century old. To begin the celebration of a year older, let’s discuss what made my twenty-fourth year so special.

Twenty-four was a roller coaster. Between my fluctuating job situation and planning a wedding, I was all over the place. Emotionally, financially, and mentally.

For my birthday, I decided it was time to upgrade my ride. I had been driving a Dodge Neon and hated every moment of it. Shortly before turning 24, the battery decided to crap out and the minor fix was the excuse I needed to trade my wheels in. The new ride? A shiny, new Chevy Cruze.  Happy birthday to me!

During the Fall, I took advantage of every opportunity handed to me.

In October, Chris and I traveled to Europe. This marked my first time on an airplane and my first time out of the country. We spent time in Spain, France, and Italy.

I also went skydiving. (Sorry no pic of me falling through the air !)

I rode a mechanical bull in the middle of the street of Savannah.

During the winter, things calmed down for a bit. But once the weather warmed up life picked right back up again.

Spring brought on big changes.

Photographer: Korie Lynn Photography

During the month of March, Chris and I moved in together, I started a new job, and I got married. It was a slightly chaotic month.

I went to Costa Rica in April where I saw sloths, toucans, and the Pacific ocean.

I also went to Sweet Life Festival.

In May, I met the band Fun.

And I went to my first professional baseball game.

The start of the summer in June was met with jam-packed weekends. First a trip to Pittsburg to see Girl Talk.

And then a ride in a hot air balloon.

And then Modest Mouse two nights in a row.

The first week in July, I ran my first 5K race. And I met my time goal.

I’d definitely say it was a BUSY year . Honestly, I enjoyed every moment of it. All of the uncertainty, all of the new experiences, and all of the blessings. I wouldn’t change a thing.

Here is hoping that twenty-five will bring an equally amazing year.

How did you celebrate your twenty-fifth birthday? Was twenty-four a good year for you? What happened? What would you have changed? Let’s discuss! 

**I own the rights to all photos displayed in this entry. Please do not claim them as your own. If you want to share them or use them in any way, leave me a comment and we can discuss further.**