O Angelina

A Girl and Her Dog: Living, Loving, & Enjoying the Little Things


The Great Mountain Mural

DIY, Living Well, The Blue HouseAngelina OberdanComment

Don't worry. This is still a blog about living a creative life. (I think that perhaps living with RA is just another creative challenge.) 

One of the coolest things I've done in the last few months is paint a mountain mural on our stairway walls.

My obsession with mountain murals all sort of started in 2015. See, Dan and I both love the mountains. Dan was a backpacking guide (ranger and ranger trainer) at Philmont Boy Scout Ranch for years. And what I loved most about living in rural South Carolina was the view of the mountains on my drive to work and the easy access to hiking.

When I moved to Charlotte, I missed those mountains, and we were living in a quirky attic bedroom. So I painted a mountain mural on the walls. 


The Original

Mountain Mural 

Honestly, I loved that mural. I loved falling asleep being reminded of the mountains and waking up to them.

When we moved into the Blue House, one of the first questions was, "Where am I going to paint my mountains?"  And the easy answer was: "Straight up the stairway." The stairway (not the actual stairs) needed to be painted anyway; parts of the walls had been patched and never repainted.

So in an interview Layla and I did a few months ago, I committed. Finally. 

And over Spring Break, I got started. 

I had to get used the ladder, experiment with paint colors, prime the walls, and, accidentally, give myself and the dogs some sweet highlights. 

Once that was all done, I started taping off the mountains and experimenting with the colors I picked. 

For the paint colors, I worked with a lot of samples. I didn't know how much I would need or what colors would look good, so I went to Lowes everyday to try more. For real, the guys in the paint department at Lowes knew me by name and always asked for pictures of my progress.

I also painted and repainted some of the mountains to get the right contrast. First the mountains were too brown and green, so I added more blues, grays, and even purples.


Color Inspiration


And one day, I wandered into Marshalls and found this gem. A complete coincidence, but it really helped with figuring out which colors I needed. 

Waiting to take the tape off was one of the hardest parts, so I slowly took it off as I finished one color/peak at a time. 

Here are the final pics! 

I love that the mountains are visible from our den, and I love that as you walk up the steps, you walk into the mountains. It's amazing. 

We Kicked Butt Last Weekend

Charlotte, DIY, Living Well, Thankful, The Blue House, TriathlonsAngelina OberdanComment

You know how some weekends you do absolutely nothing? Yeah? Well, last weekend we did quite the opposite. Here's what we did! 


I competed at Tri Latta! (swim = 750 meter, bike = 17 mile, run = 5k)

It was fun, and I felt great. And now I have goals! (Sort of. I'm working on coming up with some concrete racing goals and a good training plan. More on that later.) 


This guy, Jackson, came and stayed with us! 

Jackson is Dan's mom's nine-year-old lab. He's pretty goofy, but he's doing really well. And it makes wrestle-mania even more fun. 


Dan made us this! 

It's a bike hanging wall in our sitting room! We don't actually sit in the sitting room, and since we moved in, we've been stashing the bikes there. We decided to embrace it. And now our bikes have a home! 


And I decided to make a thing for our front door. 


And we spent the rest of our time chilling in the backyard with the dogs. 

That's how summer weekends should be! 

The Blue House: Some Spring Updates

DIY, Charlotte, Style, Living Well, The Blue HouseAngelina OberdanComment

I'm getting really excited about doing some larger house projects this summer, but before I get to those, here are some smaller decorating updates I got to do during the semester! 

The Den - 

We finally got around to hanging pictures on the walls, and since having a coffee table blocks the flow of the room, I collected some great side tables! 

For the collages: I just freehand them. If they look unbalanced, you'll know in a few hours, and then you can re-sort them. (Yes, I've always gotten in trouble for all the nail holes in the walls. #dontcare) 

For the end tables: Around the comfy chair are two two new ones at HomeGoods. The off-white one I actually found on clearance and has a built in cord holder, charger, etc. There's a small dent in the side, but if you live like I do, everything gets dented eventually anyway. The round metal one is just kind of funky, and I got it because if it didn't work here, it would have worked in our entry way. Next to the couch is an old end table from Pier One which actually opens up to the side and faces the kitchen. One the other side is an Ikea cart; when Dan leaves his stuff out, I put it in his cart. That means it's usually filled with unopened mail, but it's a perfect compromise and super handy. 

Kitchen Cafe and Mud Room

In our last house, we were spoiled with a mud room. In the Blue House, we don't have one, so we had to make this space work. 

This space is fun. It's decorated in a cafe-esque style with my favorite chairs and a table with drop down sides. Dan's salt and pepper shaker collection is one the wall as are a bunch of our fun kitchen prints, including some prints from St. Louis favorites: Volpi's and Vivano's. There's also a bench full of a lot of crap (grocery bags, bug spray, dog leashes) and the coat rack that is also currently displaying all of our race medals. We come in the side door, so we had to have a place to drop our stuff. It turned out pretty functional. 

The Dog Room (AKA My Dressing Room)

We have two upstairs bedrooms; one is a guest room, and we don't really have a current use for the other right now. So I made it a dog room/dressing room! 

So I didn't include a picture of the dog crates, which are also in this room, because it didn't seem necessary. But the Ikea carpet and dressers work well up here, and make it really for me to get dressed. I found some funky Frida Kahlo inspired curtains on Modcloth that work really well, too! Also, some of the dresser knobs broke in the move, so I started collected funky ones. One day, all the knobs will be fun! 

The Upstairs Bathroom

Currently, the upstairs bathroom has baby blue title and mint green walls. It is not gorgeous. However, I found this shower curtain that makes it work! It was a lot easier than painting, and it'll do for now! 

Fun, right!? I really cannot wait to get into my summer schedule; then I'll have time to get crafty and creative!

Meet the Blue House!

Charlotte, DIY, Living Well, The Blue HouseAngelina Oberdan3 Comments

So as I mentioned before, I haven't been blogging enough. Part of the reason is because we bought the Blue House. 

To begin our home-living, Dan and I tackled three rooms: the kitchen, the den, and part of the book nook. 

The Kitchen 

Obviously, Dan and I love to cook, which is why we tackled the kitchen first. The worst part about the kitchen when we moved in was that the microwave was too close to the stove for my big soup pots. So we pulled out the microwave and installed a hood with plenty of clearance for big pots and lots of cooking. While the microwave was removed, we decided to paint and title. The paint I used was grey, and the brown in the pictures was already there. Then we tiled the backsplash with beveled white subway tile. Looks pretty awesome, right?! And of course we hung Dan's salt and pepper shaker collection. 

The Den

The den is the place where we spend a lot of time, and it has white carpet, which something had to be done with. 

Because the carpet needed an immediate solution (white carpet + dogs + a back door), I found two rugs: one at Ikea and one at World Market. Also the coffee table didn't fit, so we replace it with end tables that I pilfered for our existing furniture. I also ordered some awesome new pillow covers from HomeLiving on Etsy to go with the grey walls, which Layla clearly enjoys.  I also painted the wall and lower part of the ceiling leading for the den to the bedroom to coordinate with the kitchen. There are a lot of cool lines in our house, so adding the accent gave the room a lot of dimension. 

And, last but not least, the Dormer Windows in the Book Nook 

In our upstairs book nook (my favorite room), we have these great dormer windows. So one of the first things I wanted to do was make them extra comfy with pillows and start to fill the shelves with books. HomeLiving was wonderful enough to make me these gorgeous custom covers! And Trouble is quite content. (The other side of the room is not close to finished, which is why it's not pictured.) 

Great, huh!? 

And don't worry! The Blue House projects won't end for awhile! More updates soon!