Wednesday, January 29, 2014

{san francisco skies}

I'm thinking of starting a new feature called:

 "Skies of San Francisco: As Seen By My Phone"

^^work view

This city!

**All photos are unedited & taken with my iPhone 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

{five years of celiac disease}

the iceburg metaphor, more medical
than my boyfriend one
Five years.


That is so crazy to me!

I can remember the diagnosis like it was yesterday. I won't go through the saga again, because I've done that enough {& it's outlined in the "Why So Lively" page above}, but gosh. I'm so glad that one doctor finally figured it out.

Celiac & I have had a complicated relationship in the past five years. He's like a high school boyfriend who knocked the wind out of me when we first met, then turned out to be a jerk right after, but by our 5-year reunion finally got his shit together & turned out to be an okay guy.

Except I had to be married to him the entire time. And forever.

You know? ;)

I'm still completely at peace with it, even if I do still mourn over Dunkin Donuts & Entenmann's crumb cake & the idea of never having a croissant again {it's apparently scientifically impossible to make one without gluten}. It's also still a huge pain while traveling--airports & planes still haven't caught up yet.'s been fascinating to watch the world adapt to this disease. It was virtually unheard of five years ago, but now it's talked about all the time. Not always correctly, but the awareness is higher than ever.

I'm so thankful Dylan & I have had to go through this together. I's so much easier to have a gluten-free buddy at gluten-filled dinner parties. The fact that we both have this genetic disorder proves that we are, in fact, identical twins---something we did NOT know in the 17 years before our diagnosis. So wild.

We're pros at it now. I don't cheat, don't really feel the urge to cheat anymore. I feel SO healthy---I can't stress that enough. When it comes down to it, that's really the main point. I felt so sick for so long. This healthy thing is really addicting; I'd be stupid to mess with it.

This blog was named Lively Liv because of my diagnosis. It wasn't until I eliminated gluten did I finally feel alive---or, lively---again. I'm determined to keep it that way.

So...Happy 5 Year Celiac Anniversary to Dylan & I!

What a great excuse to bake a cake :)

**Celiac isn't the main focus of this blog anymore, because it's so minuscule compared to the rest of my life, but if any of my readers have questions about it, or a gluten-free diet, please reach out.  I'm always here to offer support & tips.

Monday, January 27, 2014

{weekend recap}

This weekend was so great!

The weather is doing wonders for my mood. Not that I'm NOT happy these days, but the warm temps & constant sunshine are putting even more pep in my step.

{I'd like to add that this weather we're having is, apparently, highly unusual. We're actually in a drought. It's supposed to be rainy & foggy…yet it's only rained two days since I arrived in October. I'm convinced I brought the sunshine. Ha!}

^^the sandals came out again

On Saturday I started the day with my roommates--who are awesome, by the way--interviewing some girls to take one of our soon-to-be-empty rooms.  So interesting to be on the other side of the table for that whole process. 

Then I headed to community music center to play the piano. This was mine for one hour:

I was in heaven.

Even walking around---hearing the strings play & horns warm up & voices singing scales---I felt more like myself than I have in a while. Music used to be SUCH a huge part of my life, but through college & beyond, it's taken a back seat. Not to sound overly sappy or weird, but having my fingers play for an hour & being able to sing without worrying if my roommates could hear me did wonders for my soul.

^^song by Coldplay, usually played much slower

So this will be a regular spot for me on the weekends…until I get my keyboard out here. 

The rest of the day was so low key. I sat in the sun & read for a while, then checked out some stores, &  walked to get some ice cream. It was too warm not to.

^^my neighborhood

I can confirm that I have two ice cream shops within walking distance to my house that have gluten-free cones. Dreamy.

On Sunday I hung up my curtains & FINALLY selected a wall color. More on that soon.

I ended the weekend just as I had started it---interviewing potential roommates with my current ones. I think we made a good choice. 

Hope everyone's weekend was as good as mine! What'd ya do?

Happy Monday.

Friday, January 24, 2014

{five things on friday}

1. See this guy?

That was me trying to catch the bus yesterday morning. 
I went DOWN. 
The entire bus saw it…then drove away. 
{Yeah, I didn't make it.}
It was so painful--in embarrassment, yes...but more actual pain.
My hand & knee are still banged up & sore. 
My pride on the other hand? 
Well, considering I took the bus home 
with half the people who saw the tumble, 
I'd say my pride is still intact.
. . .
2. I started re-reading the Harry Potter series to pass the time during my commute, 
{don't let me fool you--it's just 15 minutes},
& I'm totally loving this decision.
And what do you know…ABC Family is having a HP marathon this week. 
I can always count on them to double dose my fix.
. . .
3. Love that I have two good friends who blog.
Check them out.
They are equally amazing blogs…
& girls.
. . .
4. This is the only corner of my room 
that has seen some progress.

Slowly but surely it's coming together. 
ps. Could my bedding be any more boring? 
And wasn't I totally right when I said I felt like 
Zach Braff à la Garden State
Love that movie, by the way.
. . .
5. Is it bad that I've been counting down the days until tomorrow...
simply because I'm planning on going to Costco?

Happy Weekend!!!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

{a few photos of my apartment}

I live in a typical San Francisco apartment; it's essentially a townhouse, but each floor is its own apartment. My floor--the top floor--has four bedrooms, one bathroom, a kitchen, & a small living room. There's a laundry room on the bottom level, as well as a small storage space & large patio. I totally scored.

In city bathroom standards, this one is a gem.. The finishes are really beautiful--from the tile, to the marble, to the beadboard, to the claw foot tub. And all in one room! {Lots of SF bathrooms are all broken up.}

The kitchen is what sold me on this place. Living with three other people, it's so nice to have a ton of storage & lots of room to cook. And I--naturally--love the details too. I mean...that sink?! :)

^^so shiny

^^click to make it larger

The pros of living on the top floor is the light. OH, the light. The kitchen is flooded with it. I bask in it every morning while eating breakfast & enjoy the spectacular view.

^^during the day


We have a tiny living room on the other side of the kitchen. We're rarely all in here together, so the size isn't really an issue. It's perfectly cozy. This room has the door to the stairs, which leads down to the patio & laundry room.

you guessed it--those are my newly-painted frames ^^

So that's it! Everything minus the bedrooms. I really lucked out with this place, wouldn't you agree? :)

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

{ideas for my bedroom}

So here's the post where I talk about my bedroom!  Finally, right? :)

My room is 12x12 with ten foot ceilings…my largest room in years!  The details are great: the hardwood is original & in excellent condition, the trim is thick & gorgeous, & the closet is huge.

Let's talk about the trim--it's classic San Francisco. Not only does it outline the doors, windows, & floors, but it outlines the room about a foot below the ceiling. {Speaking of the ceiling…it's curved!} Quite honestly, I'm a fan of white trim, so I was bummed about the dark wood. And with one window in my room, it has the possibility of making the space feel dark. {When I first moved in, I also thought the trim made the room feel dated, but I've since changed my mind.}

BUT…I've come to embrace it. There are so many other ways to brighten this room! And like I said before, it's part of the charm of San Francisco architecture, so it'd be cruel to paint it.

Here's a mood board of my ideas:

1. Color scheme
The walls are going gray! I know what you're thinking: gray + dark trim is not a usual combo. But I think it's going to work. There was no other color that I considered--I'm obsessed with gray walls. It goes with everything, light bounces off it easily, & it's a hard color to get sick of. I'll be bringing in different hues of blue, coral & yellow as pops of color too.

2. Carpet
This beauty is from West Elm. I looked for a carpet for WEEKS & when I saw this, it was love. The most important thing it needed to accomplish was hide dirt {I'm a vacuum fiend}, & this guy does the job. It doesn't look it in the photo, but it's actually wool, so it has great texture in person. Chevron is super overdone--especially on carpets--but I think this is different enough where it doesn't feel like old news. The best part about it though is the color. Depending on the time of day, the light can either make it look gray or beige. Remember when I talked about the weird gray + brown color combo I'm doing? Well this carpet helps solve that problem by blending the two.

3. Dresser
I bought this IKEA dresser back when I first moved here in October. I knew I would be incorporating gray into whatever room I moved into, so the color was a safe bet. It's also easy on the wallet & sturdy enough to hold a lot of my clothes, so…win/win. I have two ideas for sprucing it up, but that's way down on my list for right now.

4. Drapes
I splurged on these, but I've been eyeing them for quite a while, so I'm feeling no buyer's remorse whatsoever. Ha! {It also helped to have a gift card & student discount. Yeah, I'm using that sucker for as long as I can.} I was thisclose to getting the yellow ones, since I'm trying to brighten the room any way I can, but I eventually went with the navy. Even though I went dark, the linen between the velvet pattern allows tons of light to come through. My window faces an alley of sorts--it just opens up to the space between my building & the one beside it. Good news? There aren't any other windows in the "atrium",  so I don't need to worry about privacy at all. The curtains are purely decorative, so they'll always be pulled to the side.

I have two weeks to change my mind about the curtains, but I'm thinking they're going to stay.

5. Frame wall
I've been wanting to do a photo wall for so long & I'm thrilled I can finally do one! I have so many things to hang I'm worried I don't have enough space :) I'm going to do a post soon on everything I have in my pile, but when it comes down to it, everything I hang will have meaning. {For the record, the frames in the mood board are not mine.}

5. Desk
I love a good desk & I love a good side table, but with limited space I couldn't do both. The choice was an easy one: a desk could do both jobs. The space between my window & my bed is about 3.5 feet, so I thought it would be the perfect spot to fit one in.

You know what are expensive? Desks. I checked about four different thrift stores with no luck, so I moved on to Craigslist. I ended up buying a GORGEOUS wood desk for a steal.  I had fully intended on painting it yellow--I even went to the store & bought all the supplies {$$$}--but it's just too nice to paint. The wood is in pristine condition & it matches the trim perfectly,'s staying.

6. Coat rack
This was a Christmas gift from my mom & what a great surprise it was! Last year at a flea market we both fell in love with a yellow coat rack, but someone snatched it up before we could ourselves. I totally forgot about it, so when I opened this, I was so excited! It's the perfect pop of color!

So those are the items currently in my room! Here's what I'm still undecided on:

1. Bedding. I'm leaning towards a duvet, instead of a quilt, but I cannot find anything that I like! Any ideas??

2. Headboard. I really want a headboard! Not for practically's sake--because the wall does just fine--but mainly because I think a room visually looks better with one. Problem is, my mattress is on a box spring, not a bed frame, so I don't know how I would connect it to a headboard. I'll either need to nail something into the wall--which I'm not crazy about--or come up with a faux headboard. Ideas are welcome!

Obviously there are a few other things that I'll be incorporating into the room--namely my piano/keyboard when I actually research the best way to get it out here--but for now…this is the plan. I'm pretty excited about how it's coming together. I can't wait until the walls are painted & the frames are up…that'll make the room really feel more mine. {and a lot less messy. I miss seeing my picture frame-less floors.}

Progress pictures to come soon!

Happy Tuesday.

Monday, January 20, 2014

{a trip to the conservatory of flowers}

The amazing weather continued the entire weekend, so I spent nearly all of yesterday outside. After brunch, I walked to Golden Gate Park. 

Specifically, the Conservatory of Flowers...

^^they had a special butterfly exhibit

^^only view I could get ;) he chilled like that the whole time

^^there's something about water droplets that make it impossible not to photograph them

^^I couldn't help myself

I headed home a few hours, but still refused to go inside! So I ventured down to our patio & painted some picture frames. It was both a success & disaster--I made some rookie mistakes. Luckily they turned out okay enough to use. You'll see them in an upcoming post.

There are so many things to see inside GG Park it's impossible to do it all in one day! It's within walking distance to my apartment, so I know I'll be going there quite often. Next time I want to rent a bike, bring some lunch, & check out the Japanese Tea Garden.

Friday, January 17, 2014

{confessional friday}

Hey everyone!

How was your week? Mine was pretty darn good. Hope your's was too.

Let's get to the confessions...

1) I confess that ate a cinnamon bun yesterday for lunch. But I confess that it was okay because A) it was delicious, B) it was warmed up in the microwave {& you can't turn down a warm bun, amiright?}, and C) my boss shared it with me.

2) I confess that my room is a mess right now. Well, it LOOKS like a mess. Only because I have about five million picture frames on my floor waiting to be hung, so it looks much worse than it actually is. Even so, I still find myself shutting my door every time I leave my room--even if I just go to the kitchen or bathroom--because I'd be embarrassed if my roommates snuck a peek inside. But I can't hang anything until my walls are painted, & my walls can't be painted until I pick a color, & I can't pick a color until I get samples, &... long story short, it'll be like this for a while.

3) I confess that I'm counting the days until my next vacation. {Exactly one month, if you want to join the countdown with me.}

4) I confess that I'm LOVING this weather out here in SF. I mean...70 degrees! In Juan-uary!

5) I know I just said Juan-uary. Because I confess that I'm already sucked into this season of The Bachelor. I don't usually watch this show, but my roommates had it on, so I started to pay attention. {Yes, I did just give the "but only because my roommates watch it" excuse.} There's no denying how attractive Juan Pablo is & he seems pretty sweet. But even though Juan Pabs is borderline boring, the girls keep me coming back. I mean, the fact that a girl wrote "Dog Lover" on the line where she was supposed to write her, you know, JOB, is just too good to pass up.

6) I confess that, "Well, if I was a contestant on The Bachelor..." was actually a sentence I started last week.


Someone take away our tv.

That's enough embarrassing anecdotes for one day.

Anyone else have a three day weekend? Hooray! Enjoy it!

Monday, January 13, 2014

{weekend pics}

All of these are so random. I was supposed to take pictures of my apartment for you all last week, right? Well that hasn't happened yet ;) Last week was a doozy--that's my excuse.  So without further ado, here are the random photos...

First---things in bloom:

^^my roommate's birthday flowers

^^our little porch garden

Snippets of architecture from my new neighborhood:

^^hey rubber-band-that-I-didn't-see-before-I-took-this-picture, thanks for ruining it! 
by the way, this is my entryway

^^this may or may not be my building

^^arches + deep eggplant + crown molding = stunner

On my way to Hayes Valley:

^^my street & gorgeous street art

^^one of my favorite brunch spots, based on that carpet & fireside chair ALONE

^^I mean, this place has so many design wins

This weekend was a lazy & productive one...& before you correct me, that CAN be a thing. I did five loads of laundry, read two books, scrubbed parts of the kitchen, painted two paintings, browsed three thrift stores & a garage sale, drew a print, & watched three movies. But I also lounged around a lot. 

& even though it sounds like I had little human interaction, I had lots. Ha!

Happy Monday!

ps. Did you watch the Golden Globes? Amy & Tina were hilar {please let them do it again next year!} & I was excited about some winners. Spike Jonze's Her win was incredibly deserved, as were all the American Hustle scores. Also--Amy finally won! {talking about both Adams & Poehler} And Robin Wright won! Have I written a love letter post about House of Cards yet? Because I should do that soon...

My fashion favorites?  Lupita Nyong'o, Olivia Wilde, Julianna Margulies, Allison Williams, & Cate Blanchett. And Bradley Cooper, obvi. Who were yours?  

{my least favorite? still chanting why, Julia Roberts, why?! in my mind, even hours later}

Friday, January 3, 2014

{a new year & teeth woes}

How was everyone's New Year?

I'm not really a big NYE gal--I'm all for celebrating the start of a new year, but it's the late night parties that I usually skip. My sister & I kept things super low-key on Wednesday and just watched a movie at home. I went up to bed around 11pm & by the time I looked at the clock, it was 12:03. I toasted with a bottle of water :)  Maybe in my next life I'll be cooler. Ha!

My family has been hit with teeth woes this week. Dylan had gum surgery last Friday, so she's been unable to talk or eat for a week. It was a bummer not being about to chat with her during the last few days of my trip, but just being together was perfectly fine too.  But now I'm really looking forward to our trip together in February so we can get back to our normal chatty (eating) selves :)

On top of that, my stepsister had her wisdom teeth taken out, so I was really the only kid able to eat! Until, that is, I bit into a pretzel & chipped my front tooth. UGH. I will spare you a picture, but I'm stuck looking like a boxer until Tuesday. What a great way to introduce myself to my new SF dentist, right?

{I don't even want to mention the fact that I went to my dentist once & orthodontist twice earlier this week. Got a perfect score on all my check-ups, but this still had to happen. Again: UGH.}

I'm back in SF now. I was lucky in that my flight scooted out right before the snow storm hit last night. I can't say a few more days stuck at home wouldn't have been amazing, but I think I need to get back to my daily routine & time zone. Oh, & my job ;)

This trip home was just what I needed. I saw 99% of my family, including all of my parents & sibs, & just relaxed relaxed relaxed. I didn't get to see many friends, but lots of them are headed out west soon, so we'll make up for it then.

My plans for the weekend are to get some bedroom design posts ready. I arrived back in SF armed with gift cards to get this decor show on the road. I've picked out a carpet & curtains, so now that I have a color scheme, I'll be able to start working. I'm also hoping to get some photos of my apartment this weekend to show you all. That's way over-do. AND…I'm going to write a post on my resolutions for the year.

Again, I hope everyone had a lovely holiday!

I'll leave you with a photo from this week that I LOVE. Dylan smiling as best she can, considering all the gauze & pain inside her mouth & me, smiling because we were at SONIC :)

{Also, both of our hair looks pretty good. Ha!}

I miss the days when I had 100% of my teeth.