Last week, I showed you our new pergola, the first part of our backyard renovation. Since then, the patio extension and pea gravel area have been completed, and we’re on our way to finishing up the entire project. The goal was to increase the amount of usable space for the boys to play, while also providing more shade during the hot summer months. We still plan to add ceiling fans with lights to our porch ceiling and we’ll also install a mister system eventually, too. The overall cost of this project was pretty significant, so we’re doing it in stages each month to spread things out a little.
The pea gravel area will eventually house a playscape for the boys, and we’re hoping to install that later this year. Going into this project, I knew it might take the entire summer to complete, and thankfully, we’ve had really mild temperatures and lots of rain. Even though we don’t have ceiling fans installed yet, we’ve been able to spend some time playing outside. And since we live on a really busy street, having a safe place to play is incredibly important.
Last weekend while the boys were visiting my parents, Ryan and I cleaned up our existing shrubs and added a bunch of mulch to the shady area near our fence. We’re lucky to have a huge elm tree in our backyard that provides a lot of shade, but there’s an area near our fenceline that gets too much shade to properly grow grass or many plants. Because the tree’s root system is basically the size of its canopy, and our tree is well-established at this point, it isn’t a good idea to cover the base with anything solid like concrete. Instead, we are leaving the area open and will add a bunch of shade tolerant plants next weekend. We’ve already picked out a few that are drought tolerant and like the shade, and I’m excited to spruce up this area.
I love working in the backyard and now that we’ve maximized the space, it’s a wonderful place to spend the weekend.
I had my eyes examined recently, and my prescription hasn’t changed at all since the last time I had them checked. Six years ago. I know that’s a long time to go between eye exams, but I was busy with my little guys and my old pair of glasses works perfectly fine for driving and watching television, which are the only two reasons I really need glasses in the first place. So I didn’t bother to get a new pair while I was at the eye doctor, and then Firmoo contacted me to review a pair of their glasses.
Since I don’t wear glasses for long periods of time each day, I’m not up and up on the current glasses styles. I thought it might be fun to try a pair that are different than my normal style, and I agreed to do the review. Ryan was also in need of a new set of glasses, and he was able to order a pair from Firmoo, too. Our glasses arrived recently, and we’ve been trying them out for the last week or so.
I know that online glasses retailers are becoming more common these days, and Firmoo’s ordering process was fairly simple. In the past, I always ordered my frames from my eye doctor, but it’s obvious that they mark up the glasses considerably. Firmoo has online tutorials to help place your order while following your doctor’s prescription, and it’s an easy process.
I received my glasses for free in exchange for this review, and Ryan took advantage of Firmoo’s “First Pair Free” Program. We quickly discovered that “Free” is a bit misleading, because only the frames are free, and there are only nine styles from which to choose. Fortunately, Ryan found a free pair that he liked. You have to pay for your lenses and shipping, as well as other features that you might add, but that’s still a discount compared to our doctor’s prices. Ryan paid around $20 total for his glasses.
When Ryan initially placed his order, after I had placed mine with the customer representative, he wasn’t able to receive the free frames. Once I contacted Firmoo, they explained that the offer is only good for one purchase per IP address, and I had already placed my free order. Ryan was able to use his phone to place his order, and I suggested to the representative that Firmoo offer one free pair per email account instead. I’m certain that many households include multiple people who wear glasses, and one per IP address is all sorts of ridiculous.
Our glasses arrived fairly quickly and came with a hard case, storage bag, polishing cloth, and a repair tool. I was impressed by everything in the kit and the tool will come in handy for repairs. Ryan is really pleased with his new glasses and wears them all day every day. I’m happy with mine as a nice change of pace, but they are a little too large for my face, I think. I prefer more subtle frames that aren’t really noticeable, which are nice for driving and watching television. My new pair are much heavier and thicker, and I feel like they create a blind spot in my peripheral vision. They’ve become my at-home glasses for now, but I might have them adjusted and see if that helps. I really love the color, though, and I think it’s fun to have pink glasses.
Overall, I was really pleased with Firmoo’s site and their customer service. The ordering tutorials are helpful and the site is easy to use. The discounts in place will save you money, too, but be prepared to pay for parts of your order if you are buying a free pair. Glasses are expensive, and if you have children or are ordering for several family members, the cost can add up fast. Firmoo has a great selection of frames in all shapes and styles, so they are worth checking out as a way to save money.
(I received a free pair of Firmoo glasses in exchange for this review, but all opinions are my own.)
I first read about Orn Hansen on Apartment Therapy and fell in love with the beautiful store based in Long Beach, California. When I visited their online site, I was impressed to learn that Orn Hansen’s purpose is to support American makers and their goods. The store features a large range of clothing and accessories for men and women, as well as home and apothecary items, jewelry, and vintage pieces.
The vintage pleated skirt above caught my eye immediately, and this indigo pique dress is gorgeous, too. I’m really drawn to Orn Hansen’s overall aesthetic and I love the focus on simplicity and purpose found in the domestic goods the store carries.
I’ve yet to visit Long Beach, but if I do, I’ll be sure to stop by Orn Hansen’s brick and mortar location. Fortunately, they have a full store online, too.