Sunday, November 28, 2010

One Year Houseversary

This past weekend marks the one year anniversary since we bought the house and started tearing it apart.

It's been the year of SURFACES. Floors were sanded and/or replaced and stained. Walls were painted. Trim was painted. Bathroom surfaces were completely ripped out and replaced (Floor, walls, fixtures). Lawns were reseeded. Plants planted.

Let me recap where we stand:

Front of the house:
What we did: Planted grass and added some plants under the front window. Hopefully next spring everything will fill in nicely.
Still to do: tear out that annoying tree (unknown variety) and the gigantic hemlock that is balancing precariously to the right of the house. (I'm usually against tree removal, however these are real doozies).

What we did: All the wood floors were re-done. The downstairs floor unfortunately needed to be replaced completely since the tongue-and-grooves were really worn down in spots. The upstairs floor was in perfect condition for re-finishing:
gunked-up before photos equal a perfectly refinished after, as below right:

What we did: We painted the radiator cover and the walls. This isn't even a before - more like "midway" and "after midway".
Still to do: replace lighting fixture. (Please!)

Living Room:
What we did: Floors and paint done. Painted the brick of the fireplace.
Still to do: tackle the built-in shelves (paint and display!) also get the fireplace working. And a cozy rug and new coffee table would be extra nice.

Front room / Sun Room / Office:
What we did: Floors and paint done.
Still to do: replace cheapy canvas blinds with different cheapy, yet thermal blinds. Paint desk and replace desktop. A rug and chaise lounge would be nice in here. We need a custom radiator cover made.

Dining Room:
What we did: Floors and Paint done.
Still to do: new dining table and chairs. Drapery!

That which will not be named. Nor seen. Needs to be gutted, walls ripped down. EVERYTHING REPLACED.

Staircase and Woodwork:
What we did: Half painted trim.
Still to do: Finish priming and painting entire wall of staircase. Peel wallpaper and paint back wall along staircase.

Upstairs hallway:
What we did: Floors and paint done. DONE.
before and after - different view (whoops should take a new photo with new floor)

Our Bedroom:
What we did: Floors and paint done. New bed, check.
Still to do: Ok for now, pending future trips to Home Goods.

Guest Room:
What we did: Floors and paint done. Bed inside.
Still to do: Ok for now, pending future trips to Home Goods.

What we did: Everything.
Still to do: Curtains, accessories.

I want to take a moment to thank you all for reading this blog. I hope you find it entertaining. We really enjoy every second we spend in our home (whether drooling in front of the tv or brushing away cobwebs in the basement) and we're looking forward to all the projects we have on our to-do list in the coming year! But thank you thank you to everyone, I love reading the comments you leave - keep them coming!

Because I love to talk!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Bathroom - Part 14 - Revealed!

It's fitting to reveal the bathroom today. After all, we tore this thing apart a year ago this week. I would like to remind you where we started:

The sink area. Cabinet doors falling off their hinges, and inside, it was just nasty. Opening up that medicine cabinet door revealed rusty grossness. The lighting fixtures were too old-fashioned. Oh, and the sink was blue.

The wallpaper was a weird blue cloud print. And it was peeling. And there was a silly fish border around the top. The window was a dusty old mid-century addition that was sub-par. The radiator was exposed.

The bathtub and toilet were blue. The inside of the tub was that cheap acrylic stuff.
The floor was dated and old.


We replaced EVERYTHING. New tub, toilet and sink, subway tile in the tub, new sub-floor, new marble tile on the floor. New walls, new electric and wiring in the walls, new paint and lighting fixtures. New window to match the house.

I've always wanted an all white bathroom. And the style suited our 1920s house. All in all I think we ended up with the bathroom of our dreams:





It took a lot of time. We lived with only the bare necessities for months.

But I can happily say after a year, I would do it the same way again.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Guest room - another update!

I know what you're thinking - how lucky you are to be looking at not ONE but TWO (!) guest room updates during these past couple of weeks. Yes, I know you were really, really holding your breath on this one.

So my mother had to question why I changed the layout to my original plan. I had some excuse. But then I got to thinking. And as usual mother knows best. So I switched around some of the furniture to what I originally was going to do. And I think I do like it better:
I also added in the curtains for REAL cheap - both windows cost about $25 (together) at Target for the tension rod plus curtain panels. I would like to come back and do something a little fancier, but this is fine for keeping the dim light in the morning.
To see the previous layout, you can click here, or just scroll down a few posts...


Oh, and the bathroom is complete!!!!!
I will hopefully get a few decent photos tomorrow morning and will share with you this week.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

watching weight

So a few weeks ago I realized- seriously bro- these extra 15 pounds I've been trying to lose all summer are not budging. (This includes the 8 magical pounds I gained the second I turned 30. Um. Not cool.)* All the running and boot camp classes in the world were not making my butt smaller.

I was eating very healthy foods before, mostly organic, mostly vegetarian. Looking back, I realize the portions were just too big.

So I joined Weight Watchers. And I lost about 4-5 pounds in the last 2 weeks! Without exercise. Even going on a couple of business trips. Even with only a small choice of crap food in the airport a few of those days.

I even convinced John to join.

It's really working!

*edited because the period and parenthesis were in the wrong order - and driving my mother insane apparently.

Photo credit

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Guest room progress

Finally, FINALLY we have a functioning guest room. It's amazing what one crucial piece of furniture can do to a room.

Case in point - this was our guest room for the past few months...

Uh, something missing?

So after our new bed purchase in our bedroom, we moved our old bed into the guest room. Actually the mattress people did all the moving. I just did all the laundry.


So we have our guest room ready in time for my sister's visit this weekend! (It's a surprise for her since she thinks she's sleeping on the couch for the umpteenth time).

(By the way - periods before or after the parenthesis? I got in a fight over this with my friend and we didn't talk for days afterward. Literally. But I cant remember which way was right.) -or- ).

We still need to get some kind of curtains or shades, I'm not sure what I'll find tomorrow at Target, but my primary concern will be sealing the room off from as much light as possible during the day. Of course we need lamps, a nice little area rug. Oh, and I also have plans to make a little black and white gallery wall over the vanity. The vanity FYI, is a piece from Nanny's bedroom set. The chair needs to be covered. Both chairs actually. So lots more projects to come.
Etc, forever and ever.

Also, because everyone loves a before picture:
Absolutely horrifictabulous

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Bedroom development alert

We decided this would be the weekend we acquire a new bed. The Veteran's Day sales were in full force these past few days which was a huge HUGE incentive to get it done.

I also hit up Marshalls and found (latched onto) these pillows.
I am a sucker for monochromatic texture.

So it is an upgrade from a full to queen-size bed. We are moving on up in the world!

The bedroom still needs a lot. I would love to get new curtains, a cozy area rug, and a more substantial mirror over the dresser. Also the lamps look a little too fancy for the space. And of course I've been eye-ing the Colette bed for a bazillion years.

But I don't have that nagging voice go off in my head when I look around the room, so I am leaving it be for a while now (pending my next trip to Home Goods).

By the way, just to remind you what we started with:

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Totally random

This weekend I raked and cleaned up the front yard, replaced all the batteries in the smoke detectors, turned back the clocks, did the laundry, scrubbed the bathroom top to bottom, installed weather stripping in our front windows. I also paid all the bills and organized and filed all extraneous papers, watched Avatar on HBO, and cleaned our floors. Dusted everything upstairs, and took a couple of naps.

I've been thinking about our living room couch wall. It is so boring right now! Almost embarassing. Especially that we've been here almost a year and everything looks like it was thrown in place in two seconds. We don't even have an area rug:
Then I saw this page in House Beautiful. Oh my god, do I feel inadequate:
I don't particularly care for the colors, but the layering! Seriously. This year will be the year of layering. Because I have none. Ok, I have exactly one layer right now. Couch. Need 8 large frames on the wall, tons of pillows, and coffee table. And patterns.

Next up: bathroom news. Shamefully, still no sconces installed. It's turning out to be slightly more complicated than we thought. Since the sconces are required to be attached directly to a box, and we only have wires coming through. And one of the wires isn't near a stud, so we'll have to rig something up (there's always something!!).

Anyway, we're checking if a friend can do it and if not, we're calling in some help. This will hopefully happen sooner than later, because it IS my goal to have this done by the one year anniversary of us tearing the old bathroom down.

But here is a sneak peak:
Still in the packaging. So sad!

And the mirror, ready to go up!

I swear this is happening soon.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Of living rooms and stufff...

It's a good weekend coming up. I WILL get something on my to-do list done!

I wanted to show you all a couple of images of living rooms that have caught my eye recently:
Actually I could do without the granny-looking chairs in that one. But besides that, pretty awesome.

Apparently I really love turquoise, gourd-shaped lamps. Also hippopotamus shaped coffee tables?
Have a good one...

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Laundry Room Dreaming

I just made a list called "Important Goals for the House to be Completed This Coming Winter."

Funny that the words "laundry" or "basement" do not appear anywhere on said list.

However, we always want what we can't have, right? So instead of, say, priming the living room bookcases, or searching fabric stores for chair recovering materials, or even running to the store to buy more 9 Volts to replace the ones in our chirping smoke detector, I spent my evening thinking about what to do in my fantasy basement laundry nook. (Because even in my wildest fantasies, my laundry nook is in my basement?)

Clockwise from top left:
- I have a slop sink - one that needs replacing, but working nontheless - I would love to make a skirt out of this cute material (stolen from an Anthropologie curtain)
- I own a bar step stool chair circa 1950s - it is begging me to be recovered, polished, and sprayed in a cute pop color like the one pictured
- Of course we would need to throw in some useful laundry items, like this sorter and some wooden hangers (my laundry fantasy includes using only wooden hangers throughout the house!)
- Mrs Meyers lavender detergent - you smell so good!
- Baskets for organizing and hiding things on my shelves
- A cute new ironing board cover in a pop yellow print
- A comfy new rug to cover the cement floor
- A sewing kit for repairs (how June Cleaver of me) and while we're at it, I might tuck a shoe polish kit into one of the baskets (see what I'm doing here?)
- And the washer and dryer. I own them, so the most important items are checked off my list! (And therein lies the problem - since the most important item is the only item REALLY needed, I will most likely go a long long time before running off to Ikea to buy baskets for the basement laundry shelves) (if ever).

p.s. I know I promised some bathroom progress photos. We have sconces! And mirrors to install! And marble floors to scrub! And shopping! shopping! hurray! However extreme laziness took over my body on Saturday to the point that I was utterly useless, and doing anything more complicated than sitting on the couch and watching tv was out of the question. Even calling the electrician proved to be a task to hot to handle. So this weekend, ok?