Hale to the Navy

No, my grammar nazi friends, I didn’t misspell the title, I just painted the wall in Reese’s new study navy! Last I left you, the room looked a whole lot like this:


I told you guys in this post that my husband was going back to graduate school in the spring and we decided to do a little change-up upstairs to give him a room of his own to study in. So the goal with this room is definitely to make it more masculine and a calm place that is all him and relaxing for him to use. I bought him a desk that just arrived last week (thank you backorders!) but before we got that arranged in there, we wanted to paint the room! Paint is my favorite (ahem… cheap) way to change the whole feel of a room! After spending a fair amount of time looking at rooms on Pinterest I settled on the sort of rustic industrial look that Reese likes and decided Benjamin Moore’s Hale Navy was the right way to go.

Since this room has only one small window painting the whole room would feel a bit cavernous, so we settled on one ‘accent’ wall.


And this is the point in the story where I really started to feel like this room was NEVER GOING TO BE FINISHED.  Do you ever have projects like that? After I had picked the paint color,  I also ordered this duvet in the gray color to fit the twin bed.  Welllllll it arrived and it was king sized.  Wah wah. So I called to see if I could return it and get the right size, but apparently Pottery Barn had a glitch in their online ordering SKU numbers so everyone who ordered the twin size received King size and the twins were backordered until November. And since there is a HUGE fabric difference in king and twin I decided I’m going to see if I can just alter it to be the right size .

But at least I would have the two Euro size shams and pillows I ordered too right?! WRONG! Apparently those were in wrong too… so I received two Euro pillows and two STANDARD shams… COME ON Pottery Barn!! You are killing me here!!

So I returned the two shams, but kept the pillows and will either make pillow cases out of my extra fabric from the duvet or find some coordinating color/pattern to go with it!

So after all of that, this is what the room looked like:


It’s looking more manly already, don’t you think?

Can I take your picture?

I’ve always loved photography, and am learning to be better at it.  I have those great parents who are supportive of all my new interests (of which there have been quite a few… piano, photography, woodworking, running… and most of them have stuck).  So when I was in high school they bought me a Canon rebel and classes to learn to use it.  Since then I’ve been kind of obsessed with photography.  I love a good photo, whether it be artistic or just a snapshot that captures that moment in time, I love them all. And since I have a collection of cameras old and new, the office walls were a perfect place to display this collection.

So when Nannan and I were going through her basement and I found some of these old cameras, I just knew I wanted to display them. Some of them are a little worse for the wear, but I love that they show how much they have been loved over the years.


The black box behind this camera is actually an old lunchbox that reminds me of ones construction workers used to take to work.  The larger prints are photos that an old relative of mine took.  The woman in the photo below is my great great great grandmother. Doesn’t she look like she is out of an old black and white movie? office-cameras-3

But you’ll notice, not all the cameras above are as old as others.  And that leads me to one of my favorite stories and one of my favorite people.  I had a professor in college who had also taught both my brothers and my mother when they were at the same university.  He and my mother had struck up a friendship and kept in touch off and on over the few years with the occasional Christmas card or update letter.  He’s definitely a quirky professor and an excellent teacher (although his favorite line at the beginning of every semester is to say: I feel like when I’m grading students I am really grading the teaching… and I am an A teacher!)


Vic believes very much in the supernatural and the meaning of dreams, etc.  And so one day my twin brother and I had gone to his house to visit and he said: “my wife (who had been deceased for several years) came to me last night and told me I should give you all of her cameras.”  She had been an artist and worked with a lot of photography medium.  Of course I told Vic: no no I couldn’t possibly take her things! But he said he had been trying to figure out what to do with all of it, and since she had told him so, he couldn’t possibly go against her wishes.  And thus I became in possession of all of her cameras and lenses and photography books.  I never look at these shelves in the office without thinking of Vic and his wife, and the generosity he showed me.


Also on this shelf is a little mug that my aunt found me.  Since I work for the family company, and am one of the only female grandkids that lives close to my family, I regularly get delegated to be the errand girl. (In my family, we are run by the women… my mother and her three sisters and mother are all wonderful, formidable women… and together… whoa) So my aunt found this little winged roller skate and it reminded her of me and my willingness to be the little winged errand girl. I love that she thought of me and have kept this here with some of my other treasures.


And finally tucked on the tallest shelf, is a cute little picture of my grandmother circa 1922.  I think she looks cute peeking out around all the cameras.

The $750 Dollar SOB

My day job is working for my family’s construction company.  I am the fourth generation to work in the company, and am very proud that we have been a part of building roads and bridges for over 85 years.  Part of that history is the fact that the company has weathered a LOT of modernization over that time span.  One of my favorite stories about the adaptation of ‘technology’ was when my great grandfather bought his first adding machine.  He spent $750 and never trusted a number it spit out, double checking every number by hand, essentially doubling his work instead of making his life easier.  And so it has lovingly been referred to as his $750 SOB.


Although I don’t know the first thing about how to properly use an adding machine, I love having that little piece of history in my home.  It felt like my office would be the perfect place to display this little piece of history.  I paired it with an old typewriter that belonged to my grandmother (another basement find) and an old rotary phone. The typewriter is one my grandmother had in college and it was a big deal because it is a ‘traveling’ typewriter, complete with its own (VERY HEAVY) carrying case.


I remember using these rotary phones at my grandmother’s when I was a kid.  And funny story… a few years ago I was trying to fix a problem on her computer and called customer service on a phone like this.  Remember when they used to say “Press 2 on your touch-tone phone” ? Well they don’t say that anymore because NOBODY HAS ROTARY PHONES ANYMORE, but those systems don’t work with rotary phones! I appreciated the irony of the fact that my 90+ year old grandmother has and operates a computer, but is still using a rotary phone well into the 21st century.


I’ve got all these things displayed on a flat mirror laid over a bookshelf from Pottery Barn that is similar to this one (mine has a bookshelf instead of a top drawer).  The mirror was a builder grade one I removed from the bathroom downstairs but liked the shape, so it fits nicely as a platform for these items!

office-bridge-books The other cool piece of history was a gift from one of my mother’s friends who found these books in an antique store.  They are the specifications books for how to build a bridge from the 1920s.  I love how they match up with the colors and the theme of this little display!

Do you have an obsession with antiques too? I love these that have both meaning and significance to me!