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200th Post!

200th Post!

When I made my 100th post, I made 100 goals I’d like to accomplish by my 200th post. I checked in at 150 posts, with comments in blue. Strikethrough means I completed a goal, or it was negated in someway, and underline means that progress has been made, but the goal has not been satisfied. Text in blue are comments from my check in at 150 posts, and text in pink are comments from today!



What can I say, I certainty failed a lot of the goals I set for myself here. When I wrote these goals over a year ago, I certainly didn’t expect it to take more than a few months to execute my blogging goals! The good news is, I am slowly working on getting my new blog together (potentially including a new domain!), so most of these goals have been addressed behind the scenes, they just haven’t been made live yet. I expect 30 days of blogging to motivate me to get over the hump of the design issues I’m facing. 

  1. double my posting rate: I’d like to hit my 200th post by July 21, 2012. I would need to have 2-3 posts a week in order to meet that goal. I’ve been capable of doing that in the past, so I’m feeling good about being able to achieve this goal.
    (3/19 update) I’ve been doing well here, but I need to bump it up a little to make July 21–right now I’m at a pace for August. Too many days between posts lately!
    (2/7 update) Nope. I suck. Sporadic/hiatus like posting for months. Hopefully my 30 days of blogging will help me get back in blogging shape! (*flexes a weak blogging muscle*)
  2. add a prints/patterns portfolio
  3. add an apparel graphics portfolio
  4. add a wood toys portfolio
  5. add a web graphics portfolio
  6. add a general graphics portfolio 
  7. add an invitations portfolio
  8. add a photography/photo editing portfolio (?): I don’t exactly consider myself a photographer, but I sure do plan, take, and edit a lot of photos! Maybe I need to include this in my portfolios…
  9. add an illustrations portfolio
  10. add a painting portfolio
  11. redesign my portfolio section; add some neat functionality: Hubs would have to get on board for this; his new career goal is to get into interaction design, and I want him to apply what he’s been learning to my website in general, but I think my portfolio is a great place to start!
     (3/19 update) I can safely say that I haven’t done ANYTHING in regards to revamping my portfolio yet; except some very vague ideas of how I might want it to look. Major sadface. 
  12. start a recipes category: I’ve been thinking about this for a while! I don’t think it would be a super regular feature, but there are a few recipes I’d love to document.
    (3/19 update) I will be getting to this soon! I have a list of recipes I’d love to share! But it might not happen until after we finish up the kitchen. Lots of stuff is happening in there soon!
  13. consider a tips category
  14. add more tutorials
  15. change the features section (I hate it)
  16. update about section (add photos)
    (2/7 update) I’ve done this, I just haven’t made it live yet–it will go live when I update the WHOLE site. :)
  17. increase readership in an authentic way
    (3/19 update) I suppose I have done this, even if it is mainly traffic from pinterest! What I meant by “an authentic way” was that I wouldn’t make posts that were deliberately controversial or something just to increase traffic.  I currently have 400-700 page views a day. 
  18. categorize more efficiently
  19. add tags to posts that have no tags
  20. make graphics for categories
  21. finish my header/logo already!
  22. consider featuring what I wear (might help with the “get back in shape” goal): I already feature Laelia’s outfits, but I have a passion for and a lot to say about women’s fashion as well.  My first blog I briefly authored in 2007 focused on women’s fashion a bit more, as I was so inspired by other fashion blogs out there. I’d love to get back in touch with that part of myself. :)
  23. complete room tours
    (3/19 update) Well, I’m working on finishing up some of these rooms, and when that happens I can do the room tours, so there is a lot of progress happening here. Many other goals must be met before I can satisfy this one.
  24. birthday boards category: Laelia’s first birthday board is very popular, and I loved making it. I would love to make more boards for general inspiration purposes! I think I’ll also take suggestions for boards, or perhaps make custom boards for a small fee.
    (3/19 update) I’ve done a few of these! :) And more in the works.
  25. become more active in the blogsphere: I should totally be cultivating friendships with other bloggers across the land, but I’m not. I don’t think I’m doing my part. Mostly, it’s because I can barely time find to blog myself, let alone read other’s blogs. Also, although I am a confident person, I don’t say something unless I think it needs to be said (this is internet comments only), and I’m pretty reserved when it comes to self promotion, so I find myself reluctant to comment on things often (which is ironic, considering how much I write here). But following other bloggers is something I really want to and should do, and I should make time for it. I also think I should participate in more events.
    (3/19 update) I feel as if I have made some friends in the blogging community! Now I want to go to some conventions, blog meet ups, and read some of their blogs from start to finish! 

Score: 15/25




  1. switch out all fake plants for real plants, and add more plants around the house in general, including at our front door
    (3/19 update) I made progress in regards to this goal thanks to Green Your Air, but I still want to add some succulents around the house, maybe a couple indoor trees and some plants at the front door. 
    (2/7) lots of plants have suffered at my hand, but we are certainly more planty around here and I love it. I have kept two fake plants that I’m not sure I plan on replacing… maybe one day. I’d still love more plants, but our front door is certainly more cheery than before! (I’ll share a photo one day)
  2. clean & touch up all the hardware; replace some
    (3/19 update) I have my front door hardware soaking in a vinegar mixture as I type, but I’m a long way from cleaning the paint of all the door hinges in the house! 
    (2/7) Oh my goodness, tackling every paint soaked hinge in a 70 year old apartment is not for the light-hearted! Remember my kitchen post about it?While I didn’t get to every.single. piece of hardware in the house, I certainly got to most, and I’m just going to cross it off the list, cause, damnit, that was hard.
  3. organize photos
    (2/7) how do people ever have time for this? I always feel like there are a million other pressing issues that require my time more than organizing my photos… but, at the same time, I feel like our house won’t be “complete” until this is done. 
  4. wedding album
    (2/7) well, at least I have edited almost all my photos now…

Score: 2.5/4


Living + Workspace

  1. finish this room!
    (3/19 update) What does this goal even mean? Does anyone ever deem their rooms “finished”? I hate this goal. What was I thinking? Anyway, I have made a lot of progress in the room I’m sitting in, especially lately. We just finished painting in here, and while I don’t know if I love one of the colors yet, it is so nice to have fresh walls free of scuffs, pen marks (thank you Laelia), and spackle. We have come very far since I wrote this goal. I think I should make a little update this week about our progress. But, no, it is not finished….
    (2/7 update) I think I can just say that this room is finished from the perspective I wrote this goal in. I certainly have things I’d like to tweak, but nothing major!
  2. add more lighting
    (3/19 update) We added lights to the top of the bookcases just yesterday! It adds such wonderful mood lighting, but this room is still lacking proper lighting for many tasks. So, another goal “in progress”.
    (2/7 update) well, we have 3 table lamps and a floor lamp. I definitely “added more lighting! It still needs some adjusting, but regardless; goal satisfied.
  3. add more seating: Maybe even small stools in front of the coffee table
    (3/19 update) We technically have more seating, and it’s very comfortable, but I’m not sure if it is staying. More on that in another post. 
  4. make a faux mantle over the wall heater

Score: 4/4



  1. paint hallway midnight blue
    (3/19 update) We actually painted it a dark teal to match the curtains a little better, but it is all done! Not to mention adding a low chair rail and painting all the trim a crisp white (the color was a color that I can only describe as “a-smoker-lived-here-for-years-yellowed-paint”). 
  2. gallery wall
    (3/19 update) There might not be any photos in the frames, but they are up there and waiting
  3. switch out light fixture
    (3/19 update) Installed on Saturday! :) 
  4. frame wedding photos
  5. frame family photos
  6. switch out switchplate
    (3/19 update) There are a few switch plates I’d love to have, but they aren’t available anywhere right now, so I’m stalking ebay and craigslist for them. :) 
  7. paint lower half of one wall w/ chalkboard paint
    (3/19 update) We decide to nix this idea, and instead we might paint the wall heater in the living room with chalkboard paint. Does that mean this goal is satisfied, even if we aren’t going to complete it?? o_O
  8. mirror
    (3/19 update) We did find a gold syroco mirror at the rose bowl flea for $35! It looks pretty amazing in there… 
  9. make hall closet more efficient

Score: 8.5/9



Our bedroom is on the list for a makeover – I know almost exactly what we are doing, we are just waiting around for some extra money to roll in… so this category isn’t neglected, it’s just on hold. 

  1. strip mid-century dresser
  2. paint closet interior
  3. cover initials w/ fabric

Score: 0/3


Laelia’s Room

Laelia’s room is currently in transition. And by that I mean, she has a crib AND a twin bed in there as I type this! HA! But I’m designing a new quilt for her (weee!) and working on a direction for her big girl room. :) So anything that’s not tackled yet, will be tackled soon.

  1. hang quilt
    (3/19 update) Done and done
  2. paint closet
  3. make a play kitchen
    (3/19 update) Hopefully for her birthday. In less than one month. Not sure that I’ll make it, because I have lots of design work to start/finish this week!
    (2/7 update) While I didn’t make a play kitchen from scratch, I did a major makeover of the IKEA play kitchen for Christmas! It will get its own post.

  4. paint rocking horse
    (3/19 update) I may or may not follow through with this. The horse is now broken, and I’m not sure it is repairable… :(
    (2/7) Tyler wants to take this over… 
  5. easel
  6. gallery wall
  7. twin bed
    (3/19 update) I know the twin bed we will be using, but we are still enjoying her crib.
    (2/7 update) We just got it back this weekend!

  8. new rug
    (2/7 update) Well, I know what rug I want to buy, for now. I just have to wait on the money for it! (story of my life!) But knowing is half the battle, so half credit for that.
  9. toy bench
  10. add a chair
    (2/7 update) we just bought her a cute table and chairs!
  11. add finials to where the tassel garland is fixed to the wall
    (2/7 update) I used pinwheels instead!
  12. buy a ceiling medallion for the mobile
    (3/19 update) I want to switch this to “paint the medallion we have for Laelia’s mobile”. I’m thinking of a ceiling medallion for the light fixture instead.
    (2/7 update) Painted the medallion!
  13. new light fixture (perhaps move the birdcage chandelier in here)
    (3/19 update) I bought the little chandelier from IKEA in the as-is section for 19.99! It is not installed yet, though…
    (2/7 update) Painted it yellow and installed it!

Score: 10.5/13



(3/19 update) The kitchen is slotted for the next major makeover — and we just found out we will be getting a new sink and new tile as our sink is “sinking” because the wood underneath is rotting away, and it all needs to be replaced.
(2/7 update) Well, our landlord backed out of getting us a new sink and tile, but kitchen makeover is almost 100% done! I just have to upholster the benches!

  1. paint
  2. buy new chairs
    (3/19 update) We don’t need new chairs, we rescued some storage benches! :) They definitely need a makeover though
  3. install a chair rail in the breakfast nook
    (3/19 update) The rail is cut, but not installed yet as we need to strip off the peeling paint before we nail it to the wall. 
  4. make cafe curtains or roman shades
    (2/7 update) Went with blinds instead!
  5. remove the wall cupboard doors for openshelving
  6. install a shelf above the sink
    (2/7 update) deemed not viable.
  7. install shelves above the stove
  8. install shelving on either side of the window in the breakfast nook
  9. replace the brown/black billy with a white one (it’s our pantry)
    (2/7 update) We bought white long doors, and that does the trick. ~.^

Score: 8/8


Laundry/Utility Room

  1. make curtains for the laundry room
  2. paint
  3. add a shelf in the utility closet
  4. paint washer and dryer w/ chalkboard paint?
    (2/7 update: I don’t think I want to tackle this project anymore)

Score: 4/4



  1. medicine cabinet
  2. paint
  3. switch out light fixture
    (2/7 update: I think what we have is fine for now. I mean it’s horrible, but it’s fallen off my list)
  4. Étagère/space saver
    (2/7 update: I think what we have is also fine for now. I haven’t found anything particularly stunning that would work.)




(2/7 update) I still have a lot of thinking to do here. I’ve been planning on opening a stationery shop for a while now, but I’m reconsidering it because of how.much.work it really is, and I don’t know if I can charge enough to make it worth it as a one-man team. I just need to finish planning, I think, and figure out about hiring help.

  1. start on my own print line (finally!)
    (2/7 update) I can’t believe it, but I’ve forgotten that this was one of my goals, and it is a goal I’ve had for a lot longer than this blog has been around. This is what I’ve been reconsidering lately! 
  2. make posters
  3. printables/downloadables
  4. revamp/rethink/new etsy site
    (2/7 update) I’m thinking of the stationery & design shop, instead of etsy, but I might also have an etsy presence.
  5. work on a project with my husband
  6. design a font: This is really more of an item for my bucket-list. If I do this in the next 9 months, I’ll be shocked!
  7. expand my clientele; offer design services on this blog
    (2/7 update) re: stationary & design shop.
  8. learn basic HTMLOhhh, it feels daunting to even write that, but this is a skill I can totally use and would be an excellent addition to my arsenal. Plus, hubby said a long time ago that he would find it sexy if I knew HTML!
    (2/7 update) well, I learned a bit when I designed a blog a few months ago!!

Score: 1.5/8



  1. get back into shape: I was a kinda a scrawny kid, a chubby teenager and then I worked my butt off to lose 30 or 40 pounds just after college. My mom is a pilates instructor and a personal trainer. She is a size 0! (She is 5’2″). I was definitely in the best shape of my adult life during my wedding, thanks to rigorous workouts with her. But I got pregnant a month and a half after we were married, and I gained 60 lbs! I have been making slow but steady progress in this lately, but I still have more to go before we have a—
    (3/19 update) Made some progress here. Still not where I want to be, but better than where I was. :D
    (2/7 update) Thanks to the Whole30, I’m making progress again, and I signed up for my first 5k in March! So, progress.
  2. second baby: Oh yes, I totally just addressed the “are you having more children” question. I want my kids to be closer in age, (I am 16.5 mos apart my brother, and it’s greatness) and I really kinda want to “get it over with” so I can return to work full time sooner rather than later. I always wanted to have my second baby before I turned 30, but it’s looking less likely (unless I get pregnant in the next two months). Now, we’d like to have less debt and I’d like to be finished with my invisalign treatment before I get pregnant again! Also, we have a lot of weddings next summer, including my brother-in-law’s which will take place in Idaho. I really don’t want to miss it because I have to give birth, and I don’t want my husband to miss out on his brother’s wedding or the birth of his child… but I’m hoping I’ll at least be pregnant again by July 2012. A part of me is totally terrified though. That’s normal, right?
    (2/7 update) Why did I make something difficult to control a goal? HA! Anyway, we’re working on it. 
  3. get out of/significantly lessen our debt: This is a long story, and probably something I should share about because I think a lot of other people have been affected by the recession as well; but it’s a story for another day.
    (3/19 update) Made some progress here too. :D
    (2/7 update) I wonder if I thought when I wrote this goal that I meant to be out of debt by that point? I don’t think so. Anyway, we’re not doing as well as we’d like to be, (i.e. significantly lessen? what does that mean) but we are still progress, so that’s good. :D
  4. help my husband find more time to accomplish his personal goals: My husband is kinda a genius, and I believe he has the potential to start the next big thing. When I read about Mark Zuckerberg or Jack Dorsey, I’m totally reminded of my husband. I want to give him more opportunities to work on his own side projects, but it’s hard because I also need time for my own projects and I don’t feel like I have enough time as it is, and I usually need some time not having to watch over our child in order to get things done. This is one of our biggest struggles! It also compromises goal #88.
    (2/7 update) He’s been making a lot of progress in reaching and completing goals lately, and I don’t know how much I’m helping him with that, but I sure cheer him on! (what’s with all of these qualitative (not quantitative) goals on this list, huh?!)
  5. more quality time with family: It doesn’t matter how much or how little time you spend with your family, this should ALWAYS be a goal. :)
    (3/19 update) Did I write a goal I can never cross off? 
    (2/7 update) Well, a huge reason that I haven’t been blogging as much is due to this, so I’m crossing it off. ~.^
  6. go on a vacation!: Tyler and I come from large families that just never seemed to be able to afford vacations, so neither of us seem to think about it very often. So, we haven’t ever really been anywhere. And while we can’t really afford something luxurious or extravagant, I think we should make it a point to have a little weekender at least once a year! Yeesh.
    (3/19 update) I am going to Austin in two weeks! But Tyler is not coming with me. I still want a vacation where all we do is sit on a beach or near a pool and read and have drinks with umbrellas in them. And then maybe go to a few museums.
    (2/7 update) Tyler is planning a weekend getaway for us later this month. :P
  7. take more photos of everyday life
    (3/19 update) Thank you instagram! I post a lot of photos of my daily life and projects that are in progress. Follow me if you’d like! Username: jditrimares.
  8. document Laelia’s development more thoroughly: All of Laelia’s documentation seems to happen on this blog, and I have these amazing ideas of how to keep track of what she’s doing, but it always ends up falling by the wayside! Here she is 18 months old and I still haven’t written down all the words she can say! :(
    (3/19 update) I’ve been making monthly posts about her milestones since I made this goal. :)
    (2/7 update) I’m now doing half-yearly updates!
  9. write more thank you cards: I used to be so good about this, and I’ve been slacking off horribly! I still have “write thank you cards for Laelia’s birthday” on my to-do list.
  10. be more festive: I want to be more festive about each season that rolls around, and I always have good intentions that never seem to come to fruition. I’d especially like to try to make things more festive around our home as Laelia gets older.
    (2/7 update) Christmas was pretty around here, and I even have a cute heart garland up for Valentine’s day right now. :)
  11. host more get-togethers: Tyler and I used to have “Friday night dinners” at our house. Granted, this was before we were pregnant and we had no debt (besides student loans… but I don’t really count those!), but after we get our living space back together and things settle down, I’d LOVE to have people over at our house more regularly again. We love our friends and we don’t feel like we get to see them often enough! I miss all the warm fuzzies. ♥
    (3/19 update) Part of the reason I am so eager to get a lot of these house tasks/goals completed is because we have decided to host both Laelia’s birthday AND Tyler’s 30th here at our apartment. And after the kitchen is done, we’ll be able to have more people over. This is another goal that requires many other goals to be satisfied before we can meet this one.
    (2/7 update) Since we’ve almost finished our kitchen, get-togethers are becoming more and more regular around here…
  12. make something out of our pixel blocks
  13. paint more
    (2/7 update) I have been painting more! I want to do it even MORE!
  14. sew a dress or a high waisted maxi skirt
    (2/7 update) I turned a couple of dresses into maxi-skirts. :D
  15. take a 3rd level language class
  16. crochet a zig zag blanket
    (2/7 update) I’m not sure I’m interested in making a crocheted zig-zag blanket anymore…
  17. document my grandfather’s work: The visual anthropologist in me is wound up to get this done! I’ve been gathering things for a while to prepare for this, but it will require considerable cooperation from my family, who I hope will understand that I’m not trying to hoard all of his creations to myself; I just want to properly document everything we have. This is easier said than done! I am very excited to share his work with the world; especially his jewelry. :)

Score: 13.5/16

Overall Score: 71.5/100

My ultimate goal was to accomplish 80 of these goals by the time the 200th post rolled around, and I accomplished 71.5 (giving .5 to goals that are partially completed). Not so bad, not so great (I’m sensing a theme here!). But I’m more interested in what I learned about making goals for myself:

  1. Do not put qualitative goals on a quantified list like this one.
    While some of my goals were certainly easy to cross off (i.e. paint), others were a little more difficult and hard to define (i.e. spend more quality time with family). 
  2. Do fully itemize goals.
    I found that a goal that was too inclusive was hard to satisfy. For example, the living + workspace goal of finish this room was arbitrary and required the completion of many goals in order to satisfy it, while the more specific goals for the kitchen and hallway were easily satisfied, because they were much more specific. If a goal can be broken down into many different steps and individual goals, it should be considered a category of goals, not a specific goal in and of itself.
  3. Do not make a list of goals with a rather arbitrary complete date.
    By making the goal a specific post number, instead of by a date, I gave myself a time period that was determined by how many blog posts I’ve made… could this have subconsciously effected my desire to make posts, thereby influencing me to post less often, in order to give me more time to satisfy goals? Ugh. Well, I can tell you there is at least one goal I really wanted to satisfy by today, but there isn’t much more I could do about not meeting it. =/

Some of these unsatisfied goals will be satisfied rather soon (bedroom & blog goals), and some I expect are still years off (design a font, anyone? I think I just wanted to write that down). But however disappointed I am by the things I was expecting to accomplish by today, writing this has helped me come to terms with the fact that things haven’t happened as quickly as I would like, it has helped me to remember what I really do want, and it has helped me to remember that I need to stay positive and keep moving forward. So I didn’t get as much done as quickly as I wanted? Oh well. I will get it done. Doesn’t it feel good to accept where you’re at, and resolve to change the things you want to change from today forward? I’ve done that with quite a few things in my life. It’s a pretty powerful thing to forgive yourself for the past, and make room for the future. :)

My current goals are becoming more organized and categorized, and I’m learning a lot about breaking things down into more concrete and accomplish-able goals! As opposed to lofty or large goals that require many steps to complete, which make you feel like you do nothing until it is completed… (Is this what it means to become older and wiser? Why can’t we just be born with this subtle knowledge). I recently read this article about distraction and focus, which I rather enjoyed and related to. I’m really enjoying these 30 day challenges! They help you focus on one set of goals, instead of feeling like you have to be 100% perfect in regards to all of your goals, all of the time… So, I’m on day 4 of my 30 days of blogging! More to come!

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Welcome to Visual Vocabularie! My name is Jesyka, and I am a designer, artist, mom to Laelia and Luca, wife to software engineer and UX designer Tyler, coffee lover, and all around enthused person. This is my blog; here I share my personal projects, whether it's a furniture makeover, a new painting, a birthday party, an invitation I designed, or a favorite outfit for my little. You’ll also catch a glimpse into our family life in Los Angeles.

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  • Ikea Mini Kitchen Makeover


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You are free to pin to pinterest, or post my photos on your blog, but please give proper credit to my full name Jesyka D’Itri Marés (I know, I know, it's not the easiest name!), and you link back either the home page of this website, or the permalink of the original post (although, I'm sure your followers will thank you for the permalink!). I would LOVE to know if you enjoy my work enough to share it, so please don’t be shy and drop me an email!