One family's musings and quest towards a Fabulous life!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Looking at renovations...

Some big changes are afoot in the Murphy household! After several months of being unsure of what our near future would hold, we now have a concrete plan in place.  Brian has been offered an Active Duty position at Fort Hamilton, NY (in Brooklyn), and will report there in December of this year.  Katie will be completing her active duty commitment at Fort Hood, and will transition to the National Guard in late summer while going back to school full time (first on the agenda is completing a post-bac pre-med program so that she can apply to and hopefully gain admission to medical school).  

Since we now know definitively that we will be moving to New York in the next year, it's time to start planning the renovations! Today I thought I would share some "current" (hopefully soon to be "before") pictures with you so you can see where we are starting from.  Over the next few weeks I'll add photos of renovation ideas I'm playing with in my head - and would love any/all advice and feedback!!  Some areas of the house will only require minor cosmetic changes (refinishing floors, new paint or wallpaper) while other will require a complete gut/remodel.  The house was built in the 1950's by Brian's grandparents, and very few changes have occured since that time. 

We'll work with the interior of the house first - so here is a first look!

The living room (which stretches from front to rear of the house)

Fireplace in the living room.  The door to the left leads to a sun porch, and an (unseen) door on the right leads to a den area.

The staircase leading to the second floor, located in the front entryway
View of the current kitchen

Another view of the kitchen

The ground floor bathroom

Master Bathroom

Master Bathroom

Kids / Guest Bathroom

Kids/Guest Bathroom view 2

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


We just finished a GREAT vacation with the little man in Charleston, S.C.  It is amazing to realize that he is two years old, and the strides he has made and milestones he has met since we last saw him are nothing short of extraordinary.  We included a few pictures from our trip - which included multiple trips to Middleton Place to view the farm animals, the aquarium, and the park to (attempt) to ride his brand new tricycle! Aidan loves his Elmo, Thomas the Train, bunnies, and french fries (he likes to repeat his favorite meal to anyone who will listen: "chicken, french fries, apple juice, honey".  We're not sure where the honey comes from - he doesn't actually eat any). He also loves the "shopper in training" carts at the local grocery stores- but Mr. Independent will not let you help him steer at all! We enjoyed spending time with Papa Pete and Babci, as well as our visit from Aunt Jackie and Jimmy.  It was great to catch up with family on the phone a couple of skype calls as well. We are going to miss Aidan so much, and can't wait to see him again in September!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Lowcountry Cuisine

I'm in the mood for fabulous food!!!  My stomach is yearning for some food that is not mass producedHere is a run down of past favorites.. and future haunts.  I'll post the highlights of our gastronomical tour of Charleston once we've devoured ourselves full :)

32 Rue de Jean
One of our absolute favorites for moules (in six preparations!) & frites. I hear they have an amazing brunch menu as well...the omelettes & quiche sound divine!

The Mustard Seed
 The food here is always delicious & fresh.  I'm partial to the mushroom risotto, and Brian enjoys the Pad Thai, however they always offer tempting specials.  A must at least once (probably two-three times!) over leave.
82 Queen
I'm drooling already... baby spinach salad, fried green tomatoes, lowcountry crab cake, seared scallops with jumbo shrimp and mussels, entering into a food coma just imagining the possibilities...

We'd like to try:

Jestine's Kitchen 
 Super popular -always with a line wrapped around the corner; a storied eatery we've been meaning to try for a while.  Appears kid friendly (always a plus!).  I couldn't find a menu posted online, but I know it's billed to be down home southern comfort food - and I'll be more than happy to indulge :)

 {Potato Gnocchetti, Strube Ranch Wagyu Bistro Steak, Pancetta wrapped golden tilefish...mmmm}

Slightly North Of Broad 
{Tuna Crudo, Jumbo lump crab cakes, Pad Thai and grilled salmon sound delish!}

Amen Street Fish & Raw Bar  
{lobster & shrimp risotto, petite filet of beef, fried oysters, tempura shrimp and vegetable triange spring rolls - yum!}

For anyone who has been to Charleston - any "musts" for restaurants?

Friday, March 4, 2011

In my mind I've gone to Carolina...

and with any luck I'll be there for real next week! I am beyond excited to see my baby boy, who turns 2 tomorrow! For those of you who don't know, my husband and I are currently deployed to Iraq, and are SO looking forward to our upcoming leave.  We miss our son so much! 

So... I thought for the next few days I would post about things I enjoy about Charleston, where we will be spending our leave.  

First... the architecture and custom ironwork.  Here are a few photos I snapped during our trip last summer.  I hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

A little lemon...

a little lemon...
While browsing the Ballard Designs website...(and simultaneously consuming a Girl Scout Lemondades cookie) I was inspired by the pop of lemon yellow... fresh, clean & ready for spring! What do you think?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Inspired by Audrey
"The most important thing is to enjoy your life - to be happy - it's all that matters."
- Audrey Hepburn

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A Shimmery Soiree

Since I'm living vicariously through the internet right now.... here is an outfit I think would have been fabulous for the recent birthday bash of my friends Diana and Liz.  These girls are stylish and chic... and birthdays are always an excuse to dress up! 

Shimmery Soiree

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Interiors that inspire

I was recently perusing the House Beautiful website and came across...

Designer Ellen O'Neill's 
Gramercy Park 

photo credit: Thomas Loof

View the entire apartment and interview by Carol Prisant here I love the mini rooms, the color scheme and the chic and sophisticated design.  Plus, those windows are amazing!

Bridesmaid Inspiration

Bridesmaid Inspiration
Bridesmaid Inspiration by 32 Riverview Road featuring sequin handbags

I recently stumbled upon a fantastic site which allowed me to play around with some ideas for a wedding I'll be in next October. The dress is from Ann Taylor, and right now I'm loving the gold paired with the navy. The bride will also be including a dark orange in the theme, so I'll have to tie that into my inspiration at some point in the future. Col, this one's for you!