This is our kitchen! It's nice and big and has a lot of cabinets. There's also two circle rugs on the floor, partly for color and partly so when Nikki cooks at the stove, her feet and knees don't hurt. (So she says.) There's a dishwasher and an electric stove. You see the sink on the right? The counter it's on is open to the dining room, which is open to the entryway and the living room. Nikki, like all good Italian women, likes entertaining people and feeding them. This way, she can cook in the kitchen and talk to people in the living room at the same time.
[Nikki Note]: The nicest part of our Baltimore apartment was that the huge kitchen opened up (more or less) to the living room area. We had an apartment before where the kitchen was tiny and closed off, and it made hosting parties really difficult sometimes. Hard to socialize with people when you're stuck in a kitchen the size of a hallway.)
Our super-cool fridge! Representing Baltimore with Steve's Orioles magnets. We also have a lot more magnetic poetry words, but Nikki hasn't put them all up yet.
There's a closet in the kitchen that houses a washer and dryer. It's a weird place for a washer and dryer, but Nikki says she's just glad they don't have to take all their stuff to a laundry room somewhere else in the building.
Tasha's food and water bowls: the most important part of the kitchen.
The dining room! Well, the area we have the table and chairs. A great Craigslist get! The sixth chair was busted, so Nikki and Steve only got the five. Luckily, we have four more from their old dining room set, so it all worked out.
[Nikki Note]: Now we just need friends to come over and have a meal with us, and we can finally use the table as more than a catch-all for mail!
Steve didn't know what this part of the entranceway was for when we first moved in. When you come into the apartment, there's a coat closet to the left; the doors are mirrors. Then there's this next to it. Nikki finally figured out that it was a BAR AREA!! Like, for booze and glasses! How classy!
[Nikki Note]: Note the two different kinds of coconut rum. ;) The glass mugs are from my friends Kelsey and Chris's wedding; they had them custom-made. STILL don't know where the wine glasses came from. We've just always had them. Margarita glass from my friend Audra...even though I don't drink margaritas. ;P The little basket holds our keys. Always having a regular place to put them makes them easier to find.
A REAL, WORKING, WOOD-BURNING FIREPLACE!! I can't wait until it's cold enough to use this! Tasha and I have already decided we're going to make s'mores.
LOOK AT THIS AWESOME COUCH!!! Do you remember the heinous couch we used to have at the Baltimore apartment? The one that Steve's mom bought for him from Goodwill when he was in high school? The one that was torn up and dirty and hideous? THIS IS NOT THAT COUCH! There's a loveseat, and a little corner nook (where I'm sitting), and a couch long enough for Steve to stretch out on (mostly). Still needs some breaking in, but it's so much better than what we used to have!
[Nikki Note]: It was a total steal too. Seriously, it may have fallen off the back of a truck. We bought it from a liquidator. They lost the original carton with our set inside. They reordered it and delivered it, about a week and a half after we made the purchase. They're lucky I didn't have to get all Baltimore on them!
Surprise! The ottoman opens up to reveal a storage bin full of Nikki's art stuff! (And an armadillo.) Now instead of having books and coloring books and markers and sock monkey supplies and magazines in various stages of being read spread out all over the floor in the living room, they can go in the ottoman. ...Let's see how long this plan lasts. ;)
View from our super-big balcony. We're on the second floor, and there's two ponds with fountains right outside. Lots of trees and plants. It's a nice place to sit.
Best part of the porch: since it's got a concrete floor, we can have a propane grill right on it! Steve put it together, but we haven't used it yet. Hopefully it actually works.
Tasha LOVES to spend time on the balcony. Since the slats on the fence are too close together to allow her to jump out, all she does it poke her head out and survey the land below her. Sometimes, she just lays out there, chillin'. I think she likes just being outside because she never got to do that out in Baltimore.
[Nikki Note]: Just an FYI: Steve and I always check on her and make sure we know where she is at all times when she's on the porch. She's been very good about not trying to jump to her death, and we've reinforced that by yelling at her and carrying her off the porch if it looks like she's going to try to hop on top of the ledge.
I'll finish up the tour (for now) by showing you some of the community amenities that we have here. This is a pic of me, chillin' poolside. Armadillos in general may like to swim, but I don't. If I get wet, I go into the dryer, and I always get dizzy when I'm in the dryer.
There's a small gym near the pool. Steve likes to work out here all the time. Always comes home smelling terrible. ;) Personally, I don't exercise. I don't need to, not just because I'm a stuffed animal, but also because armadillos don't have a lot of body fat. Go ahead...be jealous!
Once everywhere else in the apartment is more "acceptable-looking," I'll be sure to take some more pictures for y'all.