Apartment Doorbell Label Holder Things

When we moved into our apartment I quickly taped up our names below the doorbell, thinking “I’ll fix this in a few days.” And then I didn’t, for months.  Two years, almost.

DoorLabelsBefore

It’s the sort of thing you eventually stop seeing, but a Craigslist buyer was in our apartment recently and he said “Wow, I didn’t think the inside would look this nice based on the outside!”  Thanks, and ouch?  As a renter, I don’t care all that much about curb appeal, but I don’t want strangers bracing themselves for squalor.

Some haphazard Google searching eventually led to these metal label holders. (Currently listed for $4.27 – I bought them for $9.  What the hell, Amazon?  I thought we were friends!)

LabelHolders

I sprayed the holders with enamel clear coat to protect them from the elements.  I also wrapped the printed labels in tape as a half-assed lamination.

ClearCoat

Much better, yeah?

DoorLabelsAfter

Wheels

Is there anything better than the first post-winter car wash? Yes, of course, there is (my nightly post-dinner glass of wine, for example), but washing off Chicago’s winter grime ranks right up there.

Subaru

For my birthday I bought myself a shop-vac.  Vacuuming the car will never be the same.  I can’t believe I spent years feeding quarters into the carwash vacuum and then frantically cleaning the car while an unseen meter ticked down.  (Why don’t they at least show you how much time you have left?!)

I also have a new mode of transportion: this bike is both my birthday present from Jarrod and my birthday present to Jarrod (ours are a week apart from one another in April).  He wanted me to have a bike so I can go on rides with him and I was generally indifferent-to-opposed to the idea.

Bike

But I’m smitten with this vintage Huffy Regatta we found at Play It Again Sports and I now look forward to learning how to bike around the city.

Bike

Having to buy and wear a bike helmet, however, is the worst thing that’s ever happened to me, aesthetically.

BikeHelmet

Colors & Patterns in Merida, Mexico

Jarrod and I visited Mexico at the end of March.  This was our third time meeting up with a group of friends in Puerto Morelos, a low-key beach town on the east side of the Yucatán Peninsula.  This year, the airfare was so steep — $330 per ticket in 2011 vs. $780 in 2013 — that we decided to extend our trip to make the expense seem more worthwhile. You know, spend more money to feel better about spending so much money. Our fiscal strategy has some flaws, it’s true.

IMG_7725

Just as we were starting to think about our vacation addition, Colleen at There Comes a Yes posted about her trip to Merida.  I had never heard of Merida before: I did a bit more research and it sounded great, so that’s where we went.  Behold the power of the blogger! Jarrod and I are exhaustive planners, to a fault, and it was great to just say “Yep, that’ll do.”

Merida’s colonial architecture, in all its varying states of repair/disrepair, was unlike anything I’ve ever seen in person.  While I’m not usually drawn to bright, colored patterns, the designs there were aged and muted and gorgeous.  I especially like the encaustic tiles and the hand-painted walls of Hotel Julamis, where we stayed.