Setting up the apartment has probably been one of the biggest projects to date. Well, that and doing the thank you cards, which we have just started. I meant to have them finished by last Friday, but it really takes awhile to hand-write everything. Trust me, if you are waiting to receive a thank you card from us, you really want me to hand-write it instead of Ben. If he wrote them, you'd understand the general "thank you" sentiment, but you wouldn't be able to read one word.
The apartment is just about together, with the exception of the dining room, which has boxes of stuff that we plan on (1) giving away, (2) giving back to our parents/whomever we borrowed stuff from, or (3) sending back to family somewhere to store it for us for a little while. It also has a piece of furniture that needs to be finished, but before we can finish it we need a replacement part from the company (who gave us a part that didn't fit). We're still getting pictures up on the walls; we were blessed with friends who gave us really thoughtful gifts, many of which included original artwork!
Possibly my two favorite rooms are the living room and the kitchen. The living room (pictured here) is nice and open, with plenty of space. The spaces serves to deemphasize the television (which on the wall opposite the futon), and emphasize the coffee table (with the killer spider plant on it. The plant is half-dying, but at the same time springing forth new life like crazy. A metaphor for the church, perhaps?). Note our high-class candle holders for the blue candles. ;-) With the TV are two mid-sized bookshelves loaded with books and plants and stereo speakers. Other than that, it's just a bright, open, generally cheery room that we've actually tried to color-coordinate in to some semblance of something that works. It works for Ben and me, and that's all that really matters anyway.
Next comes the kitchen. I love our kitchen! It's got so much cabinet space (I was definitely struggling with Drew housing's teeny-tiny kitchens with little to no space for supplies). Even with all the space, Ben and I are rather hard-pressed to fit all our kitchen stuff here, though we've made it work by using the tops of the cabinets for things we don't use as often. Note the presence of the breadmaker on the counter (currently in use making oatmeal bread, and by tasting the dough it's going to be oh-so-delicious! Ignore the dirty dishes in the sink). Behind where this picture was taken, we have a small little breakfast nook for the two of us. To the left of this picture is the bargain deep freeze, which we got at a moving sale for $20. And though you can't see the counter because of the fridge, the counter is lined with a nice set of knives, a spice rack, some canisters, and a utensil holder.
Truth be told, we probably have more space here than we know what to do with - there's tons of extra space in the bedroom and in the living room. However, that space isn't exactly storage-friendly...but we're making it work. We're trying to go through our things and live as simply as we can...but simple living is tough with bookshelves full of books and lots and lots...and lots of candles!