Category Archives: Gadgets & Goodies

Dear Nate, You Rock My World

I saw a tweet the other day about an event at the Barnes & Noble at The Grove that made me jump right out of my seat! I was waiting until this week (thanks paycheck) to buy Nate Berkus’ new book “The Things That Matter.” Well good things come to those who wait because the event was scheduled for yesterday and was a talk/book signing by Nate himself!

Despite ridiculous LA rain traffic (for those of you who don’t live here, no one from LA can drive in the rain. Traffic speed decreases by at least 80-90% no joke), I made it with plenty of time to grab a seat for the talk.

I won’t go on and on trying to give you a poor recap of the entire thing, but I will happily paraphrase the gist of both the talk and the book.  Nate smartly pointed out that there are a million places we can get decorating info, from television and magazines to blogs and books. It is easy to get caught up in worrying about making all of the “right” and trendy decorating decisions: having the newest, hottest paint color in your home, not mixing the wrong eras of furniture pieces, incorporating a “now” color despite the fact that your heart and soul belong to another color palette, etc. Nate very firmly believes that your space should reflect the deeply personal story of who you are, who you’ve loved, where you’ve been, and where you would like to go. He emphasized that if you love a piece and it means something to you, trust your instinct and incorporate it. Rather than worrying about making your room reflect who you aren’t by following the “rules” from others, use only your instincts to make the room a true reflection of yourself and everything you love. Every “thing” in a room should have a meaning, a story, and a connection to your journey in life.

Sorry for the bad pics- I had to use my phone :(

Okay, so he did a much better job of explaining it but I hope you get the idea.  It was truly beautiful and inspiring, considering that is the way Walker and I try to live. I have gotten a chance to read through the first few chapters of the book and it is one part memoir, one part exploring others’ spaces that truly reflect their life stories, and one part GORGEOUS pictures of all of the above.

Just chatting with Nate. No big deal.

I did get my book signed (it’s SORT OF close to “Erika…”) but I have a grand surprise for you as well…. MY VERY FIRST BLOG GIVEAWAY!!!!!! WOOOOOO!!!

Nate signing the very book that could be yours! Enter below! :)

One of you lucky blog readers gets to win your very own signed copy of Nate Berkus’ “The Things That Matter” courtesy of yours truly! The giveaway will be open for one week so enter now! I have given you guys lots of easy ways to enter and some of them you can come back and do again tomorrow. Good luck! :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

***I was not compensated for this giveaway nor was I provided a free copy of the book. I am just a big fan of Nate’s new book and his decorating manta. I love you all so much I wanted to share it with you, too!***

Fire-y Love

Friday’s 100 posts posted post (haha sorry I was having fun seeing how many times I could type that and still have it make sense) knocked me out… I didn’t have the energy to post again until wonderful, sweet Walker gave me a great reason!

Okay… here is where the bragging begins. I have the most amazing, thoughtful, kindhearted, creative man in the whole world! I got home from a very long, stressful day at work last night (one of many lately) and there was a great big box in our living room! Walker told me it was a present for me and guess what it was?!


Eeeeee! We have been talking about getting one for ages (I mentioned it as one of my 25 projects for future-blog on Friday) but have never taken the plunge. So Walker decided to surprise me with one! How sweet is that!? :)

Needless to say, you can imagine where we spent the rest of the evening.  Yes, right here:Naturally, I wanted to also get a lovely picture of Bo enjoying the new addition.  However, the second I turned the camera at him, he immediately buried his snout in the grass to hide from me. Walker laughed and I was disappointed.  But I took a picture anyway:He thinks he’s so sly, hiding his cute little face in the grass. All it took was for someone to walk by the gate and he forgot about my camera.  So I did manage to get a better picture.So that was my lovely Tuesday night surprise! The best part of the fire pit?  It comes with a grill rack!! So we have big plans to grill up a couple steaks this weekend! Yippeeee! :)

Another New Toy!

Ok, so my “stuff we brought back from our holiday visits” themed week has kind of gone to the birds, huh? I blame the record player and the new early birthday present I bought for myself today…

WOOO!!!!  I guess we can call this new toy week and continue the other theme next week.  I have wanted a DSLR forever so I finally went for it since I have been so budget-conscious lately. I figured it was time for an overdue self-splurge. After a lot of research (thus no post yesterday… I was obsessed) I got a Canon EOS Rebel T3 with an EF-S 18-55 IS II lens. I wanted to spend under $500 on an entry-level DSLR but also get something that was worth a continued investment (i.e. lenses, flash, etc.).  I read a ton of reviews and decided to go with a Canon. So I began trying to decide between the Rebel XS, Rebel XSi, Rebel T3, or spending a little more dough (on a T1i, T2i, or T3i). I read mixed reviews about the XSi so I scratched it off the list.  I then realized that the XS is a 3-4 year old model at this point and all of the tech specs were inferior to the much newer T3 (for a very similar cost).  So the T3 became my top choice.  I did a bit more research to see if I could rationalize spending more money on the higher-end models (a coworker brought his T3i into work for me to play with and it was gorgeous) but I came to the conclusion that the T3 would be perfect for my needs.  I got it on sale for $434.99 (plus warranty and tax for $503 and change) and was able to pick it up locally today!  INSTANT GRATIFICATION.  I could have saved $40 on tax if I got it off of Amazon for the same price but it was worth the extra few buck to get to play with it sooner!

So I got the camera home all excited to play with it until I realized I still had to charge the battery (duh.). Now I am patiently waiting for the little orange light to turn green and wearing the camera around my apartment with a big smile on my face (sort of a little creepy now that I mention it…).  Actually the light just turned green!!  It’s go time!  MANY pics to come!