March 29, 2012

Living in 120 square feet.

Yesterday, I randomly remembered an article I had read years ago about a woman living in a very, very tiny house.  The thing I remembered most about the entire article was the fact that she owned only 2 mugs. One for her and one for a guest.  

It seemed... delightful.

So... upon remembering this random article, I googled "tiny houses" and this is what I found:

Tiny Tumbleweed Houses
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Tumbleweed is one tiny house company that has made an (architectural) art of condensing spatial requirements for still-comfortable living within small-square-foot residences, down to as little as just 65 sq. feet.
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Tumbleweed Tiny Houses
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777 SF for two bedrooms.  By Tumbleweed Tiny Houses.
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tumbleweed houses--tiny houses on trailers as wells as small houses on foundations.  Too Cute!  (How much do two people need?) deelightfull
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Jay Shafer (the designer of all of the above houses) has turned his "tiny house" obsession into a business called Tumbleweed Tiny House Company.  For less than the price of some new vehicles, you can have a whole new house, ranging from 89 to 800 square feet.  Imagine the elimination of a mortgage!??!?  The elimination of utility costs??!?  (Most of these homes' utilities cost less than $100 a year... a YEAR!!) OR... if you're really stuck to the idea of a larger home (aka: you have children), these little guys could be studios or guest homes or vacation homes... or (drumroll please) the beginning of a compound with all of your favorite friends.

Watch a tour of Jay's home:

 Unbelievable.  

If you're as smitten as I am, search pinterest for : "tumbleweed tiny house" and see how owners have decorated the insides of their tiny homes... 

Warning: Your heart will beat faster, you'll start to question every possession you currently have, you'll start wondering about building codes and wheels vs. foundations... and if you're like my friend Kristin and I... you'll start planning where to go during tornados, the cost of building a community shelter, the trails that lead to each person's tiny home and the materials used to produce the decorative signs that will say "Mae's house... that-a-way ---->" 

On that note... I'm off to make a second pot of coffee, work on my porch, and day-dream about my enchanted forest of tiny houses...

Much Love,

mae

P.S. This week a waitress accidentally spilled an entire thing of ranch dressing on me.  It was shocking, but hilarious.  Just thought that you should know. 

March 27, 2012

Getting Real with Danielle from Love, Life, and Louboutins

Once upon a time I was at a venue in Texas waiting for Sean to go on stage, when Sean's tour manager said, "Hey, my friend Danielle has an extra seat at the front of the show... you should go meet her and sit with her." I said, "Okay", walked downstairs, met Danielle and the rest is history. According to Danielle, by the end of the night she was one step away from weaving me a friendship bracelet. (I always laugh when she says that... in fact, I'm laughing now...)   Since that night in Houston, there have been many adventures with Danielle, with many more on the horizon. Danielle is a rare breed. She is insanely intelligent, incredibly talented, a hard-core business women and completely lacks the "I'm going to make you realize how awesome I am at everything" gene that so many lean towards... In fact, in all her awesomeness she somehow manages to make you feel like you're just as cool as her.

Danielle has had one heck of a year, and I'm so excited she's willing to share it today on my little blog!  What an honor!

Soo let's


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Hey party people! My name is Danielle, and I write over at a little blog called  Love, Life, and Louboutins. 
LL&L is basically my online diary, dedicated to everything and nothing all at once. I love music, my family, and traveling so there's always an assortment of posts on all three, along with lots of random ramblings on everything else under the sun!

I am so incredibly honored to be today's guest blogger here at Mae Mae's. When she initially asked me to write a-lil-somethin' for her "Getting Real" series, I had immediate writer's block (which is funny because I, my friends, am GOOD at being real. A bit too good at times...oops). But then it came to me: write about what you know woman! So without further adieu, here I am and let's be real people...

It would be a stretch to call me religious or even church going. I am pretty private when it comes to my beliefs and tend to reserve conversations on the subject of spiritualism and religion for close trusted friends. Sometimes, however, life comes along and surprises you and gives you something that you just HAVE to share. There have been numerous times in my life when I felt "guided" by my gut towards what seemed to be the right decision, but this story is about a huge eye opening experience in my life. This story is about a moment in my life where my mind was blown by the hand of God and the blatant influence He has on my life.

About a year and a half ago I was diagnosed with something called Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. Long story short, it's a rare condition that caused significant neck and arm pain and prevented me from having full use of my left arm. After my diagnosis I took the less invasive (and unexpected) route and attempted physical therapy in order to avoid the extremely painful and invasive surgery. Seventy-five percent of the time, it was completely manageable so I saw no reason to rush having the risky surgery. In my head I thought "why WOULDN'T I try this option as opposed to immediate surgery?". So for 9 months, 3 times a week I went to physical therapy and struggled through the pain and annoying associated limitations. I went through 6 physical therapists, none who really understood TOS or how to treat it, but I kept trying, convinced there was someone in this big city that could help me.

Meanwhile, one day last November the management from my company walked into our office and dropped a huge bomb: they were closing the Houston office. 90% of the people would lose their jobs and a few of us were asked to relocate to NY. I struggled with the decision for a few weeks and kept waiting for that "moment" where I knew moving to NY was the right decision. I ultimately decided that being employed in NY was better than being unemployed in Houston. I committed to the NY move and began making arrangements.

The next week, while walking through my neighborhood one evening, my mom looked over and said "You know this means you have to schedule your surgery." I resisted, but knew she was right. I could barely carry my purse, let alone my groceries through the city of Manhattan. The next week I reluctantly scheduled my surgery for January 9th. As nerve wracking as it was, I went in the morning of January 9th excited and hopeful about the upcoming relief I would feel. While in recovery post opp, my Doctor came over to review my surgery and had some shocking news: I was an unusual case. I had an undetected extra muscle in my neck that had been clamping down on my nerves, muscles and one of my main arteries. Whatttt?!?!?! Yep. The clamping was forming an aneurysm in my vein, which in 3 to 5 years (if untreated) WOULD have killed me. I was obviously extremely relieved and grateful for the discovery, but also really freaked out. Four days later I went home from the hospital, and within 2 weeks I was starting rehab. I'm not going to lie, it was a painful process, and it took a long time to be able to walk up the stairs without feeling faint. But I kept the aneurysm in the back of my head as a reality check to be thankful for my surgery, and of course, my life!

Six weeks after surgery I returned to work, and it became clear that my future with my company would be short for numerous reasons. I've decided not to make the move, and will soon be leaving my job to find another one that will allow me to stay in Houston.  Through all the stress, the back-and-forth, the sadness, and the emotional rollercoaster of the move and my surgery, I now see so clearly that everything DOES happen for a reason. Had it not been for the Houston office closure, I would have continued to put off my surgery. Had my hand not been forced by a mandatory move to NY, I would have continued on, with a virtual time-bomb ticking away in my chest. Had my company not given me an ultimatum, I could have died from something that I never even knew existed.

That people is as real as it gets. I am so grateful for the experience, the lessons learned, the chance to truly feel God looking out for me, and OF COURSE for Mae Mae letting me guest on her blog today!

Thanks so much for listening, and feel free to hop on over to Love, Life, and Louboutins sometime and say hi. I promise, I'm usually not nearly this serious!
See!?!:)
xo,
Danielle

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See? I told you she was amazing. When she texted me from the hospital bed about the aneurysm I couldn't believe it.  What a miracle!!! Thank you for sharing Danielle! You're amazing!

   If you haven't already, go check out her amazing blog and leave her some love!!

Also, you can check out the last two segments of Getting Real here:

Week One: Getting Real with Erin from Living in Yellow
Week Two: Getting Real with Maddie from Thriftary

xoxo

Mae

March 26, 2012

Weekend

Friday night was spent welcoming two friends to the neighborhood! Their housewarming party was a TON of fun... complete with an amazing amount of food, an outdoor fire, and a house packed with some of my very favorite people.  Too much fun!!


Saturday and Sunday were spent in my pj's, lounging, reading, going on walks, and watching about 80 episodes of this:

The Wonder Years 

Paul , Kevin, & Winnie Cooper... you'll have my heart forever :)

Hope you had a good weekend!

*****

Tune in tomorrow for an incredible segment of Getting Real with yet another truly fabulous contributor.

Much Love,