Friday, January 17, 2014


Let me just start by saying, renovations are a series of ups and downs and this week it's been exactly that.  Many of you know that I get bored with my homes and my decor very easily.  I've moved 28 times in my life and I don't get attached to houses emotionally at all.  
Just a little over 1 month into this renovation and I had to admit, I'm bored with it already.  Somehow, the thrill was gone.  I quit cruising pinterest and Houzz for big ideas.  I quit shopping Wayfair and my other favorite online places for awesome stuff.  I began to worry that something was wrong with me.  
Then....stuff started happening and little by little my interest was renewed and my boredom is gone.
I was dreading dealing with that big black refrigerator.   Oh how I hated it.  I couldn't justify buying a new one because it was only a year old.  All of the big black kitchen appliances were only a year old and I was going to have to live with them.  Then something wonderful happened.  When I met with my friend Mark, who is building my cabinets, he noticed my black refrigerator.  He also happens to own a lot of investment property and he had a need for a refrigerator that size.  He had a bigger, stainless one to trade and would I be interested?  Um...yes please.  So....I went from this.. this.....
Oh happy day!  Thank you Mark!  We went on about the business of figuring out my cabinets and came up with a design that I liked that wouldn't break the bank.  I love Mark, he's a great guy.  He's also a wonderful cabinet maker and of course, could not understand why I wanted to have beautiful, new cabinets built and then paint them.  He tried to talk me out of it and then gave up.  This is Mark....
He's a funny guy.  He tried to be all serious for a picture, but then he cracked up.  So, my cabinets were on their way to being built and I quit thinking about them and moved on.
The new windows arrived and were installed.  I have put new windows in a lot of the houses I have lived in and I don't love it, but it's often a necessary evil.  In this case it was $3,300.00 necessary evil.  They look lovely, but the view is still the same.  It's hard not to think of the major changes you could make by spending that money somewhere else.  You might remember this lovely window in the master bedroom...
It was a lovely window, but, I wasn't spending the money it was going to take to replace it.  So...I got rid of the arch.  Now it looks like this....
Much less expensive and I got rid of those panels that obstruct my view.  I'm not a fan of window panels as you will soon find out.  I do love my new front window.  It's a slider and slides both ways.
So I got new windows and the heating guys showed up and put in all of the new vents and ducts I wanted as well as moved the return air out of the middle of the hallway floor, which was a terrible place for it.
Do you remember when I told you that I wanted to try a Danish Modern style in my new family room?  Well, I found a couch I wanted for it and agonized over it for a couple of weeks.  I decided to buy it and they were kind enough to hold it for me for a little bit.  I picked it up yesterday.  I think I'm going to like it....
It's convertible,  the chaise part actually can be switched to just an ottoman.  Yes, it's white and no, it's not leather.  It's leather-like.  I have big plans for that room and most of them involve funky white furniture and bright accent colors like these inspiration photos....
So...I've got the funky white what??? I need to pick an accent color and I'm open to suggestions.  When I met my husband, Sam at the store to pick up the sofa, he gave me some bad news.  There was a problem.  Famous phrase in renovation projects.  That phrase always equates to spending money we hadn't planned on, which always means some other portion of my dream is about to die.  We were going to need to buy a new front door.  Totally not in the budget.  But, we loaded the couch and headed to Lowes to buy a new front door.  *sigh*
I looked at a lot of front doors.  Problem was, all of the lovely ones were special order and I needed a front door by the end of the day.  I gave myself a big ol' renovation pacifier by choosing a door that had a nice window with a blind built in-between the glass.  (I hate dusting blinds.)  This is the door I chose...
I'll have to think about what color to paint it all later.  The problem that led to needing a new door was, we needed to raise the floor by the front door and these guys worked very hard on it....
However, by the time the entry way floor was raised enough to make it level, the door frame cracked.  Of course, it was almost the end of the day and I couldn't very well leave my house wide open overnight, so....$307.00 later, new door.
Now for some good news.  After we unloaded the door, we unloaded the couch and put it in the garage.  When I opened the garage door, this is what I saw....
My new kitchen cabinets were sitting there all sanded and ready for prime and paint!  Now that was a pleasant surprise!  Woo-hoo!  So, suddenly, I'm over my boredom and back to cruising pinterest and Houzz for paint ideas.  Here are a few inspiration pictures for color schemes that I'm considering....
What do you think about uppers and lowers being different colors?
What do you think about a marble-ish backsplash?
Maybe lighter cabinets and darker walls?  (I did have my soffits removed and intend to paint the wall above the cabinets.)
How about a lighter grey?  I guess I'd better reign my thoughts in soon and develop a plan because before you know it, I'll be painting and then I know I'll see big changes!  
Next update, I'll tell you about some awesome inspiration I got from another blogger that is coming to fruition as well as show you some things we did outside of the house.  Until then, I'm back to daydreaming and being glad that I'm not bored anymore!  (Thanks for your patience...I know this was a long post.)


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Valentine Love From Someone Else

I'm still busy with renovation happiness.  The new windows are in!  The furnace guys have completed all of the new duct work under the house and in the attic (two places I have no intention of visiting),  my kitchen cabinets are finished and being delivered today.  But....I'm not posting anything about that today.  What I want to tell you is....
Carlene at Organized Clutter has done a fabulous guest post over at the Inspiration Cafe as well as another awesome Valentine project over at her own blog.   I love Valentines crafts...can't help myself.  I intend to try a variation of both of these crafts, but for now...go check them out and see if they inspire you!
Click here to see the finished project!
I cannot wait to try making my own "rust"!  You can do it to with stuff you already have at hand.  Go check it out and just try not to fall in love with the end result....
Click here to see how to make your own rust!
Carlene is always inspiring me in one way or another.  Thank you girl.

I'm turning my comments off for this them for Carlene!

Monday, January 13, 2014


You know, mostly, I consider myself to be a craft blogger.  But, I realize that it's been a long time since I actually posted a craft on here.  Two months to be exact.  Not that I haven't tried.  Oh yes, I tried.  I had a major lamp makeover craft fail and I promise to share that with soon as I make it right!  Then, we bought a new house requiring major renovations, which means that when I am on the computer, I'm cruising Pinterest and Houzz for ideas instead of posting craft projects.  Then, my well froze and I was stuck in the house with no water.  This kind of forced me to take a good hard look at my surroundings.  Since I couldn't be bothered to decorate for Christmas,  my house has been  seriously lacking decor since last fall.  I thought maybe I should put up some Valentines stuff and make my house look a little cheerier, which I did.  In my box of Valentine decor, I found a small scrap of pallet wood.  Inspiration struck and I decided to make something. 
It looks a little "folk-artsy" to me, so I'm calling it folk art.  It went together pretty quickly.  In fact, it took me longer to get a good picture of it than it did to make it.  Figures.
I took some craft paper and made a template of my hand which I then traced on to some sheet music.  (I know, I could have just traced my hand directly on to the music, but I didn't.)
My hand is not that fat and funky looking, I'm sure of it.  I gave it a makeover with some scissors.  After deciding it was too white for my old pallet scrap, I gave it, and some words I tore out from the title, a quick coat of antique gel.
Also, in my box of Valentine stuff, I found a set of 3 wooden plant stakes all cute and painted (by someone else in a land far, far away).
I didn't really like the middle one with the hearts on it so I broke the stake off and flipped it over and used the plain red side.  I decided it was too plain and used a piece of fabric and a little charm key that I spray painted black, in the center of it.  I put it all together with a glue stick (for the hand,fabric and words) and a glue gun (for the heart and key).  I added some tiny eye screws and a chord to hang it with and called it good.  
 Getting a good picture of it was a different story.  First, it was evening and I lost my good light.  Second, I couldn't find a good background that made it look all cute and folk-artsy.  I finally decided to take it outside where I have all kinds of rusty, crusty farm stuff that makes for great backdrops.  I know my friend Donna at Distressed Donna Down home will appreciate the rustiness of the old blue pick-up bed and the tin from the old shed that I settled on for my finished pictures.  Me?  I'm just happy to have started and finished a craft.  (It's been way too long and I was jonesin a little! LOL!)
Bye-bye for now!


Tuesday, January 7, 2014


Well it's been about a month since I told you we bought a house.  I also told you we were going to do some major renovating.  I also told you that I was having company from England during the month, and oh yes...because life isn't crazy enough, let's throw Christmas into the mix!  
My husband is a very wise man and because he knew that things were going to get crazy, he hired a couple of awesome guys to start in the bathroom. (Merry Christmas to me!) We are not plumbers.  We are not carpenters.  We are not sheet rockers. I am no "Anne" from Design Dreams By Anne, although she is my DIY idol.  The #1 rule of renovation is to know your limitations.  Check. is what the main bathroom looked like when we bought the house.
Pretty basic.  Long ugly sink/vanity with a toilet/tub/shower behind a second door...or as some people say, water closet.
First, let me just say, this bathroom project is actually 2 projects because we are also adding a master bath on the other side of this one, which means...the walls come tumbling down and everything gets reconfigured.  Everything.
This was my vision for this bathroom....
Gorgeous, right?  Well, dreams die hard in renovation projects.  Oh yes, they do.  The first thing I lost was the window.  Turns out, because we are also making a master bath, there was going to need to be a wall right in the middle of this window.  Now you might think I could just move that window, but no.  You can see that window in this picture.  It's in that little alcove on the left side of the picture, just above the A/C unit.  The alcove was created when the two additions were added, so there is no place to move the window. 
I also lost quite a bit of space in the main bathroom to make some walls for the master bath behind it.  So, here are some ugly demo pictures, but stay tuned because at the end, I'll show you a few things I did buy so that I could still get the look I wanted.
This is where the bath/shower was and you can see that two walls are now gone.  Missing are the walls between the vanity and the tub (that whole water closet thing, really) and the wall behind the tub.  That gaping hole was the back side of a really long hall closet as well as a double wide closet in the master bedroom that were both torn out to make room for the master bath.
This is the other side of the water closet wall demo.
The long, ugly single sink vanity and massive mirror...gone.
So what is done in there now? walls for the main bath and the master are framed out and re-plumbed.
Most exciting of all for me, my new bath tub!  Oh yes!  It's a deep one...18 1/2".  I did not want a jetted tub...I'm way too much of a germophobe for that.  However, I have been missing my deep claw-foot tub from our cabin in Montana and this tub/shower combo will make up for it.
Also, the shower base in the master bathroom has been installed...
I had to explain to Sam why women want a seat in a shower.  Duh!  You can see in this picture that the tub in the main bathroom and the shower in the master bathroom are almost back to back.  I'm definitely saving a little money by having the bathrooms configured this way and trust me...anywhere you can save money on a renovation project, you'll need to, because...the kitchen is coming up next.  So....what part of my dream bathroom did I get to keep?
Wellllllll.....I got to keep 2 separate sinks, although I had to have a little storage below them to make up for some space I lost.  (Just so you know, I am not a lover of vanity tops.) I also found a cute cabinet to put between the two sinks.  I made a collage, so you get the idea....
It's not to scale, the cabinet is actually just a little lower than the two sinks.  I also have 2 built in medicine cabinets above each sink with some lovely sconces for each.  I will have white tile in the shower and on the floors.  My fixtures are brushed nickel.  My walls will be white and my ceiling will be the beautiful blue in the picture.  Also...a new potty.  Yay!  Let's just look at that dream picture again, because although the configuration is a little different and I lost that glorious window, I didn't have to compromise too much.
The two gentlemen, Mike and Mark, who are doing all of the work in here are a little shy about having their picture made, but I'll catch them yet!  They are awesome workers and have spent a lot of time under the house redoing all of the plumbing.  I love them.  
So what is my part in all of this? seems that my job is to run to Lowes or Home Depot as soon as it snows or an ice storm comes and pick up whatever is needed the next day.  I swear, it's true.  All those guys have to say is, "We'll need_____ tomorrow" and sure enough, we're either going to have ice or snow, but, I cannot tell a lie, shopping for these two bathrooms has been kind of fun and I haven't even gotten to the accessories yet!
Now, lest you think that I have done nothing in this reno yet, stay tuned, because in my next post, I'll be showing you the kitchen and some of my own demolition skills!
The move-in goal is still the end of February and at this point I think we'll make it.  Not that the weather is cooperating.  No, that would be way to much to ask.  I woke up to frozen water pipes this morning.  Arghhhhh.  But, I have a warm fire in the stove and hot coffee in my cup and the temps are supposed to rise above freezing today.  Ahhhhh!