Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Four Walls

My room revitalization project is going much slower than I first anticipated. The whole blog thing is going a much slower than I anticipated. I feel I am back on track now! As I said before, I just had to get some things into place, like a jigsaw puzzle.

So step one, new layout of room, has occurred. The new format makes me feel like my room is a whole new world, much like Aladdin and Jasmine found a whole new world…with love!

My room is lacking usable wall space which became a bit problematic, especially for the eyes. A window takes up one whole wall, and my closet and door to my room takes up another. Which leaves me with two walls. I used up my two walls with my bed and my furniture which really boxed in my room.



I moved my bed to the other wall in order to have open space when you first enter the room. It gives the illusion that the room is much larger than it is. I moved the desk against the window because it has a beautiful view AND it fits perfectly. Utilizing this wall opens up a lot of space in my room. I may use the negative space under the window for displaying something. What, I do not know for now. I will build a shelf under my table to store some quick things that are too big to fit in the drawers. Right now, its resting on the support beams for the desk. My dresser stayed where it was but when I build/get shelving I intend to free up some space on top and lay out  my jewelry and headbands. Maybe even get a few bowls to hold my items. The mirrors are still resting up against the walls but once I paint my room I plan to put them somewhere special. OOOOOH sooo exciting!

Yes, I drink beer in the middle of the afternoon…and what?

Stay on my page for more ideas about putting shit where!

Finally, a Successful Photo Shoot!

Jeremy and I waited so long for this moment! We’ve been patient with the rain, opposite schedules, and fund lacking but we finally got it together and took a few pics of our new items. I’m so excited I could cry.

Well not really, I’m much too cool for that.

As I said before, I hate taking pictures and I have panic attacks whenever I do have to take them. I’m a weirdo I suppose. I’ll try and get more of my personality into my shots the next time we get together to take some piccys.

But I digress…here is the super fun, totally awesome photo shoot!

                IMAG0293-1IMAG0295-1IMAG0310-1IMAG0288-2               IMAG0315-1IMAG0320-1IMAG0332-1

Check out the rest when they are posted onto my Etsy shop! WOO HOO! We are also retaking pics of older merchandise now that I have gotten over my fear of taking pictures outside. So excited for what else is to come!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Bookshelf Idea 1

I have nowhere to put my book collection. Pile upon pile of books lay stacked in my closet, collecting dust and inaccessible. I get so frustrated when I want to reference a design, concept, recipe, anything and I have to go through each book to get the the one on  bottom. Yellowed pages and dust, bindings warping from undistributed weight, words forgotten and ignored because they are out of sight and out of mind. Well, not anymore damn it! I have finished phase one of my room design (new room layout!) and will be moving soon to phase 2  (fresh new paint). In the meantime I am just dreaming up some bookshelf designs and trying to find the best solution for me. This is all so exciting!



I love the old weathered wood and the simplicity and rawness of the pipe and flange. Raw and understated, this would fit perfect in my reds, blacks, and yellows of my room. Fortunately I have been working with pipe and flange for 6 years at Urban. Unfortunately, I know how well it does not hold up. I would still love to try this out.Click on the picture for the tutorial on how to make this bookshelf.

Monday, May 23, 2011

A bit of a Sabbatical


I had to take some time off to get a few things together. Oh, don’t worry, Maraley will be back to the grind next week, updating her blog regularly and getting things running smoothly in the shop. Just had a few me things to take care of first.

But the dust will settle soon and things will be a lot clearer in my day to day routines. I wish the sun would come out already! It has been raining for two weeks straight, that is not an exaggeration. I hate complaining about not having sunshine because it is just so upsetting to know that these rains have caused rivers to rise and belongings to be lost for some people. I just wish for the good weather to come back. I really would like to take some pictures.

All is well on the eastern front here. Will be updating a lot more often. See you then!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Getting it Together

It has been a hectic few weeks over here in Maraley land. Busy with work, trying to get it together with Jeremy (to take pics), and having no time to write in this blog!

In these hectic moments, trying to analyze life and clear up any clutter/loose ends, I’ve decided to give up my car. It costs too much to maintain and pay for. My car payment is GROSSLY high, insurance is insane, gas prices are rising, and regular maintenance of the car is slowly sucking away at any chance to really start building a savings. Not to mention the stress of all this mounting inside of me. I just need to start getting rid of unnecessary stresses and it is gone! NO MORE.

I can’t keep up this unhealthy lifestyle of high stress, bad food, and no money. So goodbye pretty car, we had a wild time but I don’t need you!

I’m really dedicated in bettering my mood and my life. So you’ll start to see some pleasant changes around here.


The last few days I have been watching “My So Called Life” and it really got me thinking. The perspectives of life, the changes that have happened within my world, who I am now vs. who I was yesterday.

When the show was on air, I was the around the same age as Angela Chase and her friends. I remember thinking, “Wow, this is so real and so how I feel. Jordan is the hottest guy ever, so crush worthy. Rayanne is the coolest friend, Rickie is the best gay boyfriend ever, and Brian Krakow. . . such a turd. The parents, oh god they are annoying!”

That was 15 years ago. But now, watching the series, I feel so connected with the parents. Their stress, their worries, Graham’s search for his dream job, their relationship insecurities. Yeah, they still are a little annoying, but I can sympathize with their reality a little more than with Angela’s.

That is what I love about life. How dynamic it all is. Because Angela’s reality, life, and problems were no less important than Graham’s and Patty’s. The same as my issues as a teenager are no different than my issues now. The relevance of age and wisdom are just the factor that makes them different.

That is what made this such a good show. The two perspectives of all of their “So Called” Lives.

Streaming now on Netflix! Check it out!




Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Boy am I exhausted. . .

Work, dog, family, friends, sleep, home, promotions, Etsy shop. . . I sure do juggle a lot of things during my waking hours. I wonder how so many deal with their every day life. We are all working on the brink of insanity, emotional and physical breakdown.

Face it, we all are probably pushing ourselves a little too hard, sometimes forgetting our mental health and stability. We live in a fast pace society that our parents before us did not have to deal with. Cars, planes, subways cars, highways all move us faster than ever. We work through our break times to keep in line with our deadlines. We are given distractions from our computers, television, and movies to offer us alternatives to relaxation that our parents did not rely on. But are these outlets truly relaxing? Movie and TV plotlines are more intricate and faster moving, the internet rushes a flurry of information into our brains. Everything is fast moving and our minds and bodies are constantly being overstimulated, even when we are trying to “relax”. There is no thinking that society or our responsibilities are going to slow down to let us catch our breaths.

I know after a day of work, I find it nearly impossible to either stay awake OR to wind down after being over stimulated all day. Essentially, I have to be at the point of COMPLETE exhaustion to actually fall asleep.

So how does one learn and more importantly afford the time to truly relax and refresh ones battery?

Here are some healthy alternatives to daily wind downs and living:

Bask in the sun: Take the time to take a walk. 10-30 minutes a day during the early morning or early evening is the best time to wake up/settle down. Don’t do it during the warmest or brightest time of day. Overheating or sunburns are not relaxing! Just check out some benefits of sunshine.

Start an exercise routine: That walk a day can be your slow start to a consistent exercise routine. For me, I have a lovely little doggy that can join me and benefit from the walk a day, but take your child for a stroll, walk with a book to your local park and sit down and read, or just explore your neighborhood. Than if you can afford it, join a gym or buy a simple piece of equipment. Start slow, with 5-10 minutes and each week, tack on another 5-10 minutes to the walk. For me, I think the walk is a nice enough step for me. The point is to be active. Once your body gets accustomed to the movement and the calorie burning it will begin to respond better to your resting period.

Turn a negative into a positive: Every time you say to yourself or out loud “I’m exhausted”, punch yourself really hard in the face. Ok, that was sarcasm, but honestly, cut the shit! Negativity can really put a damper in your motivation and when you feel yourself repeating that common phrase over and over, say to yourself, “I have a small amount of energy that I can use towards a walk” and push yourself out that door!

Avoid the (over) use of stimulants: I stay away from coffee because I have two really bad addictions: Cigarettes and Coke (a-cola). I guzzle Coke like its water and for the most part REALLY cut down my smoking to a cigarette a day or every two days. But stimulants like chocolate, coffee, tea, soda, and cigarettes should be avoided at least 3 hours prior to bed rest. And remember, carbs turn to sugar and most foods do have some sugar content so its best to avoid eating at least 4 hours before rest period.

Take a cat nap: I am NOTORIOUS for having naps that last 3 hours! NO! they should be at least 20-45 minutes a day. Take them if you feel that you cannot get through the day or are feeling sluggish. They are to ease and tension and uneasiness you feel. Remember to turn off all phones, TV, and distractions.

Set up a bed time routine: This is a hard one for me since I will work late, get home at 11 then have to but for work at 8am. So getting a set routine is clear near impossible. But pick an easy routine. For me it would be: walk Charlie, take shower, brush teeth, take care of hair, hop in sack. Try to avoid Internet, books, or TV since this will over stimulate you and cause you to think more than you should.

Organize your bedroom for optimal sleep: clean sheets, dark room, clean room, closed doors, kids to sleep. Make sure you are comfortable and free of all distractions that will bother you/keep you awake when it is time to sleep!

Adopt a healthier diet: This one helps a whole bunch. Eat more greens, less sugars and processed foods. This will just generally keep you naturally energized longer and overall feeling better.

Learn to step away from Technology: Get away from the internet, TV, Cell phone, and other distractions and just RELAX.

Get into your hobby/art/passion : This is an easy one for my Etsians! Just enjoy doing what you love to do! I love to write, design, and come up with ideas. It motivates me in a positive way. Don’t think of it as a source of income or a job, really just work on what you love to do.



I guess it is all easier said than done, but once you get yourself down to a routine and you just set time to yourself to remember to just SLOW down and take it easy, you will be in much better shape for your job, pastime, family, whatever it is you feel is important. Remember, you aren’t good to anyone if you are a stressed out, burned out mess. So take time to really focus on what you need most in the world, rest and peace of mine.

Say no when the boss asks you to stay later when you are feeling tired/overworked. You will be a better employee tomorrow if you energize and relax today.

Lay off the business/Etsy one day and really relax. You will be more productive tomorrow.

Say no when your family demands more of you than you can give.

Say yes to walks and you time.

Instead of seeing your family as an obligation, sit and talk to them. Confide in them how you are feeling. Than do an activity together.

Here is an interesting article on burnout. Read it and see if you have the signs. I know I have many, MANY of them and it is time to seriously SLOW the FUCK down. I had to use angry words to really push myself.

I will be actively trying to follow all those steps and really focus on relaxing and will let you guys know how its going.


Step back and analyze.Tell me, what small thing can you do to make a positive change in life?


~All items pictured are from Etsy shop owners products. Like what you see? Click on the photos and support artists and entrepreneurs!~

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Room Update!

Ugh, what to do with this damn room! So many options, so many directions to go. I honestly want a room where I can be cozy but still inspired to do work. Nothing is more inspiring then my gorgeous view!

I love NYC. But I cannot see myself living there comfortably with the current economic condition that I am in. So I live in my home state of New Jersey, right on the Hudson River atop the Palisades cliff.

I just sit and stare out my window longingly, wishing I can enjoy a nice night out, without having to worry about what bills I have to sacrifice that month.

So here I am, in my room, alone. In this awful little room. That is why I want to redecorate.

Again, Here are the issues and hang-ups with some solutions brought to you with help from the cheap solution factory Ikea:

  • My dog hides under the bed. He also steals my socks, pens, and hides other things under there, creating a mess. I HATE MESSES
  • my closet is being swamped with bed linens

I don’t want this bed. I NEED this damn bed. As I said before, Charlie loves to escape under my bed after stealing a sock or some other thing of mine. Then a battle of wits ensues between the both of us. I cannot deal with him making a shrine to me under my bed. He also loves to “mark” the corner of my box spring and I cannot have him do that anymore! It is absolutely disgusting…but I love him and refuse to get rid of him. This bed solves all issues! I can store his toys away, put the linens that are taking up precious closet space in the drawers, and if he pees on the corner, it will be super easy to clean up…and scold him since he won’t hide under the bed!

I’m a bit weary of buying an Ikea bed, since I heard awful things about the slats to the beds breaking, but I also do not expect to do gymnast routines on top of the thing. Let’s hope it works out!

  • I have no space to put my books and I cannot have a bookshelf because I have a dog that just loves to mark things. He is not neutered and can be naughty sometimes.
  • My books are cluttering up my closet and I have no room for closet stuff.
  • I have no wall art or decorations on my walls. They are blank and empty.

I really love the idea of utilizing wall space for storage. I really don’t like cluttering up walls with pictures and I am a crazy practical person. Putting storage units and shelves up on walls creates a symbiosis of utilitarian usage and decoration. Mutually beneficial!

There are also several furry creatures in this apartment that love to swat things down. I also would love plants in my room but with those little guys around I’m afraid that they would eat/use it as litter. Usage of the floating shelves for plants would work out perfectly!

The wall cabinet is a bit pricier but the benefits are clear: you can personalize the cabinet doors with fabric, photos, or art! It has an insert option where you can pop in whatever you prefer and enjoy your own customizable cabinet. This is great for indecisive people such as myself who change their mind on designs all the time. It’s exciting!

  • I hate the color of my walls

I do. I really REALLY do. So remember I will probably be buying a white OR black bed, I have red and black furniture. Here are my choices so far

    • lime green or bit softer
    • pink (softer, not as bold as this background but along the same lines)
    • dove grey
    • earthy tans
    • pastel yellow

I still need to get paint swatches to hold up to my furniture. After some research, the favorite will be applied to these horrible walls!

I’m going to just stick to these basics for now! I don’t want to get overwhelmed. As soon as I can afford that bed, then everything will fall into place. Jeremy will be coming sometime this week to help me move around my furniture to get a better layout. I will post pics soon!

Shoe Whore


various shoes from Urbanoutfitters.com


Madison Harding Espadrilles, Sam Edelman Caged wedge

I have a thirst that cannot be quenched. I must focus on other things and not new shoes! I’m going to go reorganize my closet and get all my winter shoes toward the back and move all my warm weather shoes forward. Oh, I love the change of seasons!