Saturday, November 23, 2013

Ring Christmas Bells...

I couldn't help myself... Christmas decorations have started to appear at the Morenus home. Mark the calendar... the tree went up on November 21st.

I am taking my time at actually adding the ornaments and such. It was a miracle that we even found the tree. It was not in the shed with the other decorations and it was not left in my parents attic. I panicked but Tyler found it in our attic along with a few other boxes that were thrown up there during the move. POINT FOR HUBBY!
Let me remind you that all of our tree ornaments are DUKE and chapel hill themed.
And most have a matching pair, like these two...

I will post the fully decorated tree once it is complete!
The crafts that have been completed so far for Christmas 2013 are...
"Jail Break Deer"... Tyler named him...
A dry erase board count down... with a deer for tyler and a penguin for me...

A miniature burlap wreath... planning to make large sized wreaths too.
Lastly, I held my first "pinterest party" where some of my favorite ladies came over and spent a few hours crafting... so much fun! Here is what it looks like when six ladies craft together...
Here is some of the items we made...
Thanks for reading :)
**He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.** Colossians 1:15-17

Monday, September 23, 2013

Pruning Cabinets...

Our Pastor did an amazing job teaching us about pruning on Sunday, so I figured I would keep the theme going. After all, we did in fact prune our cabinets after church... and all day... here's the details.

At the beginning of summer our neighbors set three beautiful cabinets on their lawn. I drove by, circled and came back by, left for a little while, came back home, drove by twice again and finally called Tyler who had also seen the cabinets that morning. He said to go for it, so I rang their bell asking if they were getting rid of them. THEY WERE! And they WERE FREE! The lady had a friend move in with her and he brought with him several pieces of furniture that weren't needed and he just wanted to know that the cabinets would go to a good home (check) and would be used (check). The man and the lady even helped my sister, Amy, and I get the cabinets to my house and in my garage! SO HEAVY!

So they set all summer just waiting to be worked on. Yesterday, we "painted" the cabinets with a polyurethane remover and scraped all of the goo off of the first cabinet. IT TOOK FOREVER! It is a very "easy" process but very time consuming! SO WORTH IT! This week I will tackle the other cabinet. My wonderful in-laws helped us... one cabinet down. We brought it into the home to take a photo, and returned it to the garage. Once I finish the other cabinet we will clean both of them and return them to the living room to be accessorized :}

Below: left side has been worked on (but not cleaned) right side is original...

**Note: The mantel is still missing... that project is coming up next! Also, my father-n-law and husband "Puddy and Sanded" all the nail holes, etc. left from the previous owners... so we have "Dalmatian walls" for a little while too. Luckily, PHO (previous home owner) left the paint codes so I can go get some touch up paint and restore the clean, smooth paint look!

"I am the TRUE vine and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful." John 15: 1&2

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Get out old... New is taking over

Somehow saying "Out with the Old, In with the New" just didn't seem to do it justice for me.

I am loving the home owning experience. With and a million decorating magazines everywhere I look, it is SO easy to get overwhelmed with ideas. However, I love it. All of it. I know that half the ideas will never come to life, and the majority will be shot down by the hubs... but the ones that we do act on will be awesome!

Here are three things we are working on: My Office, The Kitchen and Our Living Room. Why the rooms have official capitalized titles, I am not sure.

My Office:

I said, "Goodbye" to the white fan that was in the room when we purchased it. It reminded me of a child's fan... small, solid white, and with an enclosed lighting system... one tiny little bulb that did NOTHING as far as lighting the room is concerned. Luckily, while at Lowes looking for grill items, I ventured over to fans and the beautiful fan I ended up choosing was on sale. I shopped Lowes, several other stores, and returned a few days later to purchase the fan. I call this the Morenus way of shopping... I'm starting to get used to Tyler's "think on it" method! The base of the fan perfectly matches my black-brown "espresso" office furniture and the blades, wood grain, add the perfect adult taste... in my opinion. Did I mention that the fan actually cools down the room now and the lights actually light the room... Amazing!


The Kitchen:

When touring the home before purchasing it, the kitchen is one of the things that made me want it. So beautiful. The previous home owner had upgraded the kitchen already so not much at all was needed to be done. But every room deserves a little personal touch. While shopping at Pier One a week ago, I found an awesome Tea Cup drawer pull for... 18 CENTS! LITERALLY PENNIES... 18 of them! This is one tool-required house project I tackled on my own! I only changed the one cabinet that stores all of our cups. You can see that the tea cup is a bronze-brown color and the remaining cabinet knobs are silver... who cares :). Maybe i'll change the other knobs later on!

Our Living Room:

As much as I love to decorate, when we moved in I could not come up with ANYTHING different than what the previous home owner had done in regards to furniture placement in our living room. The room requires furniture to float as there is a carpeted section outlined by hardwoods (laminate). So our couch and loveseat took the same home as before. However, Tyler and I both wanted to change the TV situation. A TV mount was left in the corner of the room, and before milk was added to the fridge Tyler had one of our TVs mounted. For months we searched for a piece of corner furniture that would either host the TV or stand just below a mounted TV. We never bought anything because we never loved the idea. THEN... drum roll... I found two bookcases FOR FREE. Our neighbors were getting rid of bookcases and offered them to us... for free. I took them. 9 foot tall, solid wood, glass front doors, bottom cabinets, with lighting already in the inside. We walked the entire house with the tape measure, that evening, trying to figure out where 9 foot tall cabinets would go... but the ceilings in our home only allowed for them to go in our living room and only in one place due to the number of windows we have; AROUND THE MANTEL! So excited! Tyler and his dad mounted the TV above the mantel and fixed all the holes in the walls that the mount and other nails/screws left. During the process, Tyler tried to loosen the mantel so he could shave down the edges, eventually allowing the bookcases to sit flush with the mantel... and the mantel collapsed to the floor. SO... right now we have no mantel and we have two bookcases in our... garage (on their side... too tall to stand)... waiting to be stained. When the living room project is finished... it is going to be AMAZING! Here is the before photo, but you'll have to look back for the after!

Today's bible verse comes from an adorable Celebrating Homes plaque I purchased with our family name printed on it. "As for me and my house we will serve the Lord" Joshua 24:15.

*I have no clue how to flip this... appears flipped until posted in blog*

Sunday, July 28, 2013

♥ Pinterst Inspired: Circle of love ♥

Lots of people have that one thing they can do to escape from reality and regain sanity... mine is crafting! I think it is why I love being a nanny so much, because I always get to use my creative juices to make crazy-awesome school projects or fun & practical household items.
Today I did the later.
I took four basic materials and made a "Circle of love"...
A glue gun, close pins, spray paint (I used outdoor spray paint because that is what I had on hand) and a circle of some sort (found mine at hobby lobby in the ugly green color... it was with the wreaths near the floral department. Honestly no clue of its actual purpose- feel free to leave that in the comments if you know!).

First... I laid a plastic tarp on top of three stacked Rubbermaids in my garage- I felt this little crafting "desk" was a sign from God that I should be crafting (haha). Ok really its a sign that I should unpack the final Rubbermaids! :). I placed the round frame in the center of the tarp and sprayed ONE COAT (that was all! yay!) onto the frame being sure to spray at all angles so it would cover the underneath too... I like how raised this little wire frame is! No need to flip and repeat unless you just want to. I cracked the garage (added this note for my curious father) and let the frame dry over night. The next day (ok after a yard sale... so it may have dried almost 18 hours) I heated my glue gun (about 20minutes... cold glue just doesn't work at all) and then put glue (one close pin at a time) onto the frame (on the middle two layers only... they are raised to the same height) and adhered the close pins (of course facing to where the pinned item will be off the frame and not over the center of it... duhh!). I waited until the next day.... LIE.... I immediately started attaching things and taking pictures!! :)

BE SURE TO UNPLUG YOUR GLUE GUN (Again... for my dad :))
Now that it is complete... I think I will actually "Chip-clip" it to my fridge and "pin" letters, wedding invites, cards, etc. that we receive in the mail on it! This will save a few chip-clips in the long run and look craftedly-awesome (its a word! I know Webster!).
"He has filled them with skill to do every sort of work done by an engraver or by a designer or by an embroiderer in blue and purple and scarlet yarns and fine twined linen, or by a weaver—by any sort of workman or skilled designer." Exodus 35:35

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Outrageous Cludder Domination... OCD :}

What some might call Obsessive Compulsive Disorder... like that makes sense... I call Outrageous Cludder Domination. Why? Because when I finish organizing something
 I truly feel that I have DOMINATED it!

For instance, our kitchen. Like most kitchens, we have several cabinets that are home to our dishes, pots and pans. However, our small kitchen is also the location of our laundry facilities
 and my favorite closet of the house that some refer to as a "Pantry".
As a wedding gift, my parents gave Tyler & I a membership to Costco and gave us a million bulk size household items. Needless to say, we were grateful but quickly had to find space for everything... permanent space... not just the kitchen table! Therefore, my first three OCD projects of the house were organizing our kitchen cabinets, the laundry room and the pantry. See below!
Cabinets... you never realize how much Tupperware you have until you have to find a cabinet big enough to host it. Our corner three shelf cabinet literally has NOTHING but Tupperware and one stack of Crate & Barrel saucers and two meat platters. This is what happens when one of your bridesmaids sells Tupperware! So grateful though- this stuff comes in handy since Tyler and I cook at home almost every night and ALWAYS have leftovers!
Laundry Room... So appreciative of the work that the previous home owner did to our home, such as adding additional levels of shelving in almost every closet! The extra storage room in our laundry closet very quickly become the home for our Costco goodies. We were also able to purchase a new washer and dryer from Lowes (after weeks of shopping other stores) that is energy efficient and actually did significantly decrease our water bill! Side note: An old closet organizer made for the perfect kitchen towel sorter (dish rag, dish towels and cleaning rags) and we were finally able to hang our Chapel Hill (BOOOOOOOOOO) and DUKE (WOOHOOOO) grocery bag holders that I purchased at the Southern Living Christmas Show.
Pantry... Ahhhh :)...
So happy that our pantry is SO big that it can hold all of our non-perishable food, our extra condiments and even some of our small appliances! Oh, and the aprons fit nicely on the inside of the doors too!
"But all things should be done decently and in order." 1 Corinthians 14:40

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Favorite Foods... so far

Getting settled into married life means getting use to living together and EATING together. We have similar taste buds, but never seem to crave the same thing at the same time. However, we both do agree that we want to cook meals at home and not waste money eating out!
Tyler leaves before 7am most mornings, so we end up doing breakfast separately. I typically go for a long walk with my sister and our dogs, then return home to make a yummy meal. Tyler is more of a cereal guy, but most mornings I think his breakfast consist of sunflower seeds!
My favorite breakfast meal so far is an egg patty sandwich. Ty bought a very cool frying pan that is literally the size of a perfect egg patty. I scramble one egg and 1/2 a tablespoon of milk in a bowl with a mini whisk. Then I pour the mixture into the medium-high heated pan, that I spray with PAM before heating. I let the patty form, making sure most of the mixture is in solid form before flipping it, using a mini spatula I found at the dollar store. I cover the {new} patty top with a slice of the Ultra Thin cheese by sargento (usually a cheddar or colby jack). Once the cheese has melted, I lift the patty out of the pan and onto a Thin Sandwich (like the thin bagels). Whole Grain! I usually eat the egg patty sandwich with applesauce or greek yogurt... and of course a huge Tervis of coffee! 

Our dinner routine is unique but it works for us. Tyler usually beats me home by at least an hour so he is able to do most of the cooking. Which he loves! He is a very good cook, takes after his momma! I just always feel bad that he waits on me to eat... we typically do not get to eat dinner until after 8pm.
You'll want...
Skillet and oil and medium heat- ready to go.
Oven at 375 degrees- ready to go.
13x9 sprayed with PAM- ready to go.
Boil noodles of choice!
Our favorite meal so far is Chicken Parmesan. Mostly, I love it because we both cook it together! Ty is not a huge fan of cooking meat in a skillet but I don't mind the popping oil bubbles... just wear long sleeves :). In order to have the best flavor, Tyler prepares the chicken the night before. He starts by cutting off the fat (of thawed chicken breasts) and then flattening the boneless chicken breast with a meat tenderizer. Then he pokes holes in the breasts and covers them with Italian dressing, inside of our Tupperware marinating container. We leave the breasts over night to marinate. The night of cooking, we take two "mixing" bowls... one with 3 eggs (Scrambled) and one with Italian bread crumbs... and we dip each breast in the egg (coat it) then roll it in the bread crumbs and then repeat. I let our skillet & oil reach medium heat and then take each breast (one at a time works easiest) and cook it in the skillet about 3minutes each side. Once both sides of the breaded chicken breast have that golden brown look, we place the breast into a 13x9.
{Here are the breast ready to now be baked}

In the 13x9 I place the breast in first. Then I add "spaghetti sauce" around the breast. It doesn't need to be under the breast, because it will move around once it starts baking. However, I do make sure to cover all of the edges of the pan and in between the two breast. I do not put sauce on top of the breast, but you could if you wished! {We use our own homemade sauce, but store bought works just fine!} I bake the chicken at 375 degrees for 30mintues. At the end of 30mintues, I pull out the tray in the oven and add cheese on top of the breast. Then I bake the dish for another 10minutes, changing the temperature to 350 degrees.
{Here is what the chicken looks like fresh out of the oven}
To serve, I put a breast on top of noodles (any kind... we have tried it all!) and add the sauce from the pan to my plate. The taste of the Italian chicken topped with cheese and sauce is amazing! Truly! We have had it every week since marriage, except for the honeymoon! Thanks to Momma Morenus for the recipe!
{Ready to eat...}
In honor of the food post... The picture of the day won't be of buddy bear... We will share a photo of our first ever dinner guests, our Atkinson family. They joined us the weekend after the honeymoon for hamburgers. It was very interesting- tyler used his new grill for the first time and we quickly figured out the burner covers (??) were flipped the wrong way so the flames had NO control and it looked like a giant fire! The kids told on the men, ty and colt, for their fire hazards but luckily colt was able to save the grill, the house and the food :}. Here are the adorable kids...

 "So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." 1 Corinthians 10:31

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Mr. & Mrs. Tyler Jay Morenus

I feel like we are OFFICALLY married now because of two things...
1. Legally, according to the social security office, I am Mrs. Brittany Wright Morenus
Side note to all of my friends who have recently wed or are planning to get married in the near future. Before the wedding, you need to visit the court house and get your marriage certificate from the register of deeds! At the wedding, your pastor/officiant and two witnesses will sign the certificate. THEN you get to take it with you EVERYWHERE, like it is a billion dollar bill, and change your name! Start at the social security office... take your I.D. (license and current social security card) and the marriage license AND complete the application (which can be found online). It takes 2 weeks for them to then mail you a new social security card with your new name (same number) and I highly suggest waiting on that card to arrive before you go to the dmv, among the other thousand places!!
Here is a list of places you should change your name:
Social Security, DMV, Bank (Account, Credit card, Checks), Post Office, Student Loans, Mortgage, Vehicle Title, Voter Registration, Insurance (Life, Health, Auto, Home), Utility Companies, Work (HR, Payroll...), LinkedIn, Social Media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.), Doctor Offices, Vet Office........... I am sure you'll think of more, and if so, comment & tell me!! :}
PHOTOS :}...
Visit our photographer's site for a sample of our wedding photos...
Visit this site to view ALL OF OUR WEDDING PHOTOS
using a username and password provided...

Click the link, then copy & paste the username/password and then my email (when prompted)!
username: Brittany & Tyler Wedding
password: 30686-Love

"Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate." Mark 10:9

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Happy {Belated} Easter

I hope that you all enjoyed your Easter and had a chance to thank God for all the many blessings he has provided us with! I am so glad that He has Risen!
Being that it was mine and Tyler's first {holiday, specifically} Easter in our new house I decided we HAD to decorate and that I wouldn't spend money buying too many things.
Here is what I made...
Using the following supplies:
Green Food Coloring
Rubbing Alcohol
Zip Lock bag
Throw-away plate

I put all of the rice into a gallon size zip lock bag. {I highly recommend a bag with the slider closure so you REALLY know it is closed- especially if you let kids help! Then I added a cap full of rubbing alcohol (literally filled the cap of the rubbing alcohol container and dumped it onto the rice). Then added a few squirts of green food coloring.. start with 3-5 squirts, then add more if you feel the color isn't spreading enough. Close the bag and then spread the color onto the rice by moving the rice in your hands (hands outside of the bag :)) and shaking the bag, etc. It takes no time to do so! Then pour the green rice onto a throw-away plate... it took 2 plates for me. It doesnt have to be a flat layer, but you do want it to be thin enough that the rice will dry! I let it dry for a few hours while I did other things, but once you touch the rice and feel it is dry its ready to use!

While the rice dried... I painted letters...
Can you figure out what these letters will spell?
Here is my little helper for the day... adorable!
Once the letters and rice dried.. I added the rice to the bottom of mason jars (pint size) to look like grass and put a letter in each jar. Then I ordered the jars on my mantle to spell out EASTER!
{Bad Photo}
To finish the mantle... I cut easter fabric ($1 for 1/2yard at Handcock Fabric) into a 4x6 and literally put it inside a frame that was already on my mantle. I left the photo in the frame so I wouldnt have to hunt it down after Easter! {Left of EASTER mason jars, sorry you can't really see it}. Then I dug out an old bunny rabit I had in my "Childhood" rubbermaid container in my garage. Luckily, the painting I have on my mantle already matched- so I left it! Here is our very first EASTER mantle :)...
Now.. if you had visited during the holiday, you would have been greeted at the front door by this $5 AC Moore find...
And you could have joined us for our annual egg dying fun... this photo is taken from dying eggs with our Atkinson girls. However, we ended up participating in four different egg dying sessions! :)
Last but not least...
Tyler and I started an Easter tradition. We went to Dollar Tree {his favorite} and picked out easter baskets... a chicken on his {he has pet chickens} and fun decorative eggs on mine. This step is complete for future Easters but the following will be repeated... We each picked out several packages of candy that we wanted, paid for it all, then went home and assembled the other person's Easter basket! They stayed on our kitchen bar counter so we could snack on our treats during the Easter season! WAY TOO MUCH CANDY!! :))
John 11:25-26Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Smelling the Roses

Ok- it's WAY to cold for roses to actually be alive right now {even though it's "Spring"}... But I am taking a few minutes to find beauty in an unfavorable situation.

Being married- living with Tyler... It means waking up when he wakes. He tries hard to be quiet and I think I sleep through the first 10minutes or so of his getting ready process, however, once the bedroom light comes on, despite his "cover your eyes, babe" command, I inevitably wake up! Fitting because, due to our single lane driveway, I typically have to move my car and let him out.

So those roses? Today, instead of pulling back into the driveway after he pulled out- I went ahead and headed off to run errands. After a few sips of coffee, I realized how absolutely beautiful it was outside and snapped a photo to all my snapchat friends {and saved it for my readers too}.

Enjoy the "smell of roses" today and try to find something beautiful in every unfavorable situation (like being awake at 6am and outside in the cold weather)!

Psalm 139:14... I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013


As of February 23, 2013... WE ARE MARRIED! The ceremony was beautiful and the reception was amazing... if I do say so myself! It is SO crazy how fast the day goes by, after years of dreaming about it and months of planning, but I wouldn't change any of it!

Crazy things about our wedding: The weekend before RIGHT AT our ceremony time... Charlotte had a DOWN POUR snow! I was so worried that it would snow on our special day too! INSTEAD, it rained- that's suppose to be good luck, right? Tyler tried driving my car to the church the day of- and it broke down on him. God kept him very calm though- I was amazed! He was still on time! By the end of the night, we found out lots of little crazy things that happened... I bought my dad cuff-links and he wasn't wearing a shirt that they could be attached to AND my dress caught on fire during our sparkler farewell! We were oblivious.

The Prince Resort
On the Cherry Grove Pier
North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
We had an amazing trip! We shopped WAY TOO MUCH but enjoyed spending time at a beach we had both frequented as kids with our families... but only once before had we been together. Tyler bought fireworks and a few new shirts, I bought new boots and a book to read and we both picked out a few misc. kitchen items we still needed. We also enjoyed quick service everywhere we went because of it being February... i'm talking one of four couples in a restuarant! We ate out each night and both agreed that planet hollywood was our favorite. On our last day, we got to spend quality time with two sets of tyler's grandparents! I really can't think of anything else I would have wanted to do- spending QT with my husband was BETTER than what the doctor ordered!

Tyler surprised me during our visit to Broadway at the Beach and pulled me into Build-A-Bear. As a nanny, I have been several times but never have I made a stuffed animal for myself or received one. Tyler remembered- and together we made a penguin- my favorite animal- in a DUKE jersey- my favorite team! We also named him "T Jay" which is what we will one day call a son- if we are ever blessed with one {full name will be Tyler Jay Morenus Jr.}.

The only thing that could have made the wedding and honeymoon better was to have been able to have buddy there with us! But in the end... both occasions were a lot less hairy without him :}