Shelves for Books

For the longest time the back wall of the office has looked like this (just not as clean):

Office

Not so pretty and actually pretty useless.  Those boxes next to the table have been packed for nine years believe it or not.  NINE!  They were packed up when I was first moving in with Jake and they went to storage, then they came out of storage when we finally bought the house 3 years ago and there they have sat every since.  It was time to empty the boxes.

We settled on these bookcases from Ikea for a few reasons.  We really liked the glass doors (no dusting!) and the drawers were going to be a great way to change up the look and add lots of storage solutions for us. So we built them as one does with Ikea furniture:

Ikea Pieces

Lots and lots of pieces!  Then put on some tunes and assemble for about 1.5 hours.

Office Office Office Office

Then the drawers. Ahh… the drawers.  Agonizing, is all I’ll say. I employed a screw gun at this point as I had really had enough.

DSCN4458

Luckily the doors come pre-assembled and installed very easily, so our back corner made a pretty easy transformation to give us a ton of added storage and shelves to style.

Office Office Office Office

Now, I bet you’re wondering why there’s no photos of them styled.   What happened to all of those books I talked about storing for 9 years?  Well, turns out in the past nine years this handy dandy tool called a Kindle came to be, which has replaced all those Nicolas Sparks novels and books by Alex Cross.  It’s my own fault…I should have opened them sooner!  I didn’t realize I had kept so many novels as I usually don’t!  I kept my copies of Jane Eyre and some classics, but gave the others to donation for someone else to enjoy!

So, there you have it.  An unstyled, unfinished, but perfectly functional solution to one more room in our house.  We’ve yet to organize the drawers and contents and I’ve hardly placed anything I really want for the long term on the shelves. We’re working on adding in more wood tones to balance the feminine white and aqua we already have in here, as well as incorporating some deeper blues. Completely un-Pinterest worthy, isn’t it?  But like this whole house, this room is a work in progress and it’s not always about the perfection of a space, but about the steps getting there.

Are you working on any functional but un-pinterest worthy projects? Do you have any boxes you haven’t unpacked for nearly a decade to find out you need nothing inside?  Tell me I’m not the only one!  :-)

2 Years and Forever to Go..

Yesterday Jake and I celebrated our 2 year wedding anniversary!  We kept it very low key this year (unlike last year) and simply enjoyed a champagne toast after work and went out to dinner at one of our favorite spots in our town.

Anniversary Snacks

This year rather than exchanging gifts we’re getting ourselves a big gift for both our anniversary as well as Christmas.  We’re converting our fireplace to gas and could not be more excited about it!  Real fires have been difficult to have this fireplace and we really want to be able to have a beautiful fire with cleanliness and ease.  We don’t need it to heat the house, so rather than a full insert that has a blower that throws heat we’ve chosen a simpler gas log set.  Our thermostat is in this room and our house is only on one zone, so if it throws too much heat we’ll have a very cold upstairs. This should do very nicely!

Log Set

The wheels are churning on this already and although it’ll be 4-5 weeks more before it’s all done (we have to have a door set made which takes the longest), we’ll keep you updated when we get there!

Recipe: Squash Salad

This year Jake and I joined our first CSA or Farmshare and have picked up fresh, locally grown, organic vegetables once a week since June.  (It’s Farm Direct Coop for any of you who are in the Boston area and are interested.)  It’s been fun getting vegetables we don’t normally purchase like kohlrabi (which we now LOVE!), bok choy, and pointy cabbage.  It gives me an opportunity to scour pinterest to find out what do do with them!

Last week it was this guy that was a mystery to me.

Delicta Squash

It’s a delicta squash or a winter squash.  I had to google it to figure it out and read that it’s a lot like butternut squash, but with a thinner skin that you actually don’t even need to peel.  Just give it a good wash and it’ll soften along with the flesh.  So off to pinterest I went to see what I wanted to try to do with it and I came across this receipe by Hungry Healthy Girl for her Autumn Harvest Salad.

HHG_Recipe

Looks amazing, right?  She does a great job of talking through the recipe, so I won’t really do that, but I did want to share some switches I made that made this a scrumptious and healthy dinner last night!

As promised the squash was super easy to cut and clean. I chose to cut it into slices rather than cubes since it looked so pretty.

Squash Salad Squash Salad

I tossed the slices with olive oil, salt, and cinnamon and popped them into the oven for 30 minutes, turning them once.

Squash Salad Squash Salad

While those were roasting, I put some onions on to caramelize and gathered my other salad fixin’s.  Instead of romaine I used arugula and also added pear slices, dried cranberries and a sprinkle of goat cheese.

Squash Salad

Everything is better with goat cheese!  A loaf of bread and goat cheese could sustain me for life, I swear.   I also made the maple dressing she suggested with it, but used Dijon mustard instead of spicy mustard.  Since I did so, I found I needed to add about a tablespoon more maple syrup to cut the tangy-ness of the Dijon and then it was perfect.

Squash Salad

Seriously, this salad was so good!  The warm vegetables wilted the arugula just a bit and it was full of warm fall flavors that just hit the spot after a few rainy days here.  I packed up the extra roasted vegetables separately so will get to enjoy another warm salad tonight! Honestly, it’s such a gorgeous blend of colors that this would be wonderful at Thanksgiving as well.  It’s such a pretty salad, isn’t it?

Squash Salad Squash SaladEver try a delicta squash? Have any favorite fall recipes that are a must have?