Floor Love

•July 29, 2013 • 4 Comments

I never thought it could be possible, but it is.  I’m in love with my floors.  They are officially done (minus the quarter round and radiator covers-both winter projects).


Our initial tour through the house.  This carpet was the FIRST thing to go when we took possession.  I didn’t even want to walk on it with my shoes on.


After moving in.  Painted subfloor and a giant rug to hide it.

And now:


I know! Right?  Gorgeous.  I am in love with the stain and the difference and uniqueness in each board.  Want to know the best part?  We were able to get $11 sq ft solid hickory hardwood for just $1.49 sq ft.  Deal of the century!!


A super old shot right after moving in.




And now for picture overload.  (The floors are all the same throughout the main level but the lighting and my lack of camera skills make it look really different in certain rooms.)

DSCN3874 DSCN3884 DSCN3887 DSCN3889 DSCN3893 DSCN3897

And now on to the backyard where Josh is in the middle of constructing a new modern playset.  The kids won’t let this project take long purely for the fact that we had to take down the old set and there is nothing to do in the backyard.  Can’t wait for the end result-it’s gonna be awesome!



•May 13, 2013 • 4 Comments

otherwise titled “Floors”.  If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, you’ve probably caught the drift that I HATE my floors.  We’re going on 5 years people.  I’ve built up a lot of hate towards them.  They’re AWful.  If you’re new, we moved in with wall to wall carpet which we immediately pulled back and saw hardwood.  Yay! Until we got to the addition and realized the previous owners were too cheap to do hardwood so they left the subfloor and carpeted over top.  Boo!  But after moving in, we had priorities, like making the house even livable at first, so the floors had to wait.  And wait.  And wait. 

We also were sitting on the fact that we were probably going to remove all the radiant heat throughout the house which would have to be done before the flooring project.  Turns out the radiators are staying and we could FINALLY order new floors!!! 

I mentioned last year that we were going to HardiPanel on the floors which would be all modern and industrial looking.  But after mulling over that for 5 years, Josh came to decide that he really wanted hardwood.  Not all this laminate or engineered crap.  Solid, thick hardwood.  Which, if you’ve ever priced it out, it gets pretty expensive per square foot pretty fast (and we need 1,500 square feet).

But my deal finding husband found a site online with gorgeous floors for a fraction of the price.  So we ordered our dream floor.  And here it is acclimating to our house as I type this.


(There are 17 more boxes not pictured……poor Josh. Fortunately he and a friend laid flooring one summer so he’s a pro at this point).

The Big Flooring Project of 2013 gets underway this weekend!  I couldn’t be more excited.  We have lived with these ugly floors for way too long.  Can’t wait to show you the finished results!!

The Barn Door

•April 1, 2013 • 1 Comment

It’s done!!  Tate and Sloane’s room is finished.  There are not many rooms in this house I can say that about.  I’ve always wanted a sliding barn door somewhere in our house.  I LUHUV them.  But the hardware is PRICEY with a capital P (like $400 pricey).  Then I discovered this girl who made her own hardware and well, ya know, we like to DIY around here. 

You know what is the absolute best part?  We had all this old wood laying around in the basement from a shelving unit left by the previous owner.  Thank you, sir.  (That’s probably the only time I’ll ever thank him for all the “stuff” he so kindly left us). 

Bada bing, bada boom.  Josh made a door.  Seriously took him like 20 minutes.  Fastest project ever.  Then we set out to find the hardware and were fortunate enough to find everything at our local hardware store for $29!!!  Took some black spray paint to it so it was all uniform and the results make me giddy!




•January 9, 2013 • Leave a Comment

Back when we originally did the nursery, we crammed a giant dresser and the crib against the only empty wall we had. Image

It was too much for a shortish wall.  Since redoing the closet, we’ve nixed the dresser and centered the crib.  For months that wall above Sloane’s bed has been bare, screaming for something.


ImageI had forgotten all about the bunting I had saved from my baby shower and the picture happens to be a cheapo architectural print from Staples.  It cost like $1.75 for a 16×20.  We hung it slightly higher than normal just to keep Sis from pulling it down on herself when she gets a bit taller.

I may turn this into an “art wall” as I find more things that coordinate in here.  I love all the cute gallery walls I’ve seen on Pinterest lately.

I also scored this sweet canvas thanks to a Groupon at Christmastime.


Had I known what good quality this was going to be, I would have bought several canvases of pictures.  Kid pics make the best art!


The Playroom

•December 10, 2012 • Leave a Comment

No project ever seems to be fully complete.  There’s always something to be hung, tweaked, etc.  But for now, I’ll show you the playroom MOSTLY completed.



This was quickly painted when we found out my brother-in-law would be moving in with us.  Old windows and you can still see the steps from the fire escape outside.

And today:


Stripes(!!!), new windows, and no more fire escape.  The stripes took some time, but surprisingly pretty painless. (We have extremely textured walls and I was very nervous to do stripes, BUT I found this tutorial online and it worked like a charm.)



And my favorite part:


So far we’ve haven’t done anything to this hideout except paint it.  My friend had some super cute ideas to make it into a reading nook, we just need to figure out a way to get some light in there first.  In the meantime, the boys have turned that nook into all kinds of fun imaginary places.

In planning this room, I had visions of lovely window seats with storage underneath for toys, but I have 3 boys who would most definitely be walking on top of the benches and jumping off regularly.  That and the fact that this room is on the second floor and I have a fear of someone falling out of a window, I decided that the taller metal shelves blocking the windows were a safer bet (they don’t ever climb on these thankfully).  Besides, as I’ve mentioned in past posts, the kids don’t even spend that much time in this room (sadly) so I don’t see any point in buying cute furniture.

And here’s a shot of how this room USUALLY looks:


Gray & Yellow

•November 24, 2012 • 5 Comments

(or is it grey? I was never quite sure the proper spelling).

My house is finally pretty on the outside!!  (Well, almost. There’s ALWAYS more to do but it’s mostly pretty.)

The first thing we plan to do in the spring is to redo the foundation along the front and side with stone.  The stucco obviously is in bad shape and we made it worse removing the stucco above.  We also are getting rid of some of the basement windows in the front and just walled those up for the time being.  I love, love, love my bright yellow doors.  (Funny thing, I was driving on 63rd Street the other day and did a double take at a house that is painted the EXACT colors as ours, complete with 2 bright yellow doors!  Promise we didn’t copy!)

And the back:

The 2nd story still needs soffit which will go from the top of the windows across to the edge of the roof.  Josh would still like to get that part done this fall, but we’ll see if the weather cooperates.  And we still need to replace 17 windows upstairs.  Once those are replaced we’ll have the rest of the window trim wrapped.

So there you have it.  It’s not 100% done, but it’s a whole lot better.  Josh has been in the midst of cleaning and organizing our garage (yay!) and plans to remodel our master bath this winter. (In all our married lives, we’ve never had a master bath so I’m super excited about this!)  With spring comes plans to finish the exterior (obviously), a new playset for the kids, a two tiered deck, and a major landscaping overhaul.

Just today we had an out-of-town friend in for a visit and he was exclaiming on how much we’ve gotten done to our house.  When you’re living with constant projects, it sure doesn’t seem that way, but when someone only sees it every 6 months or so, I guess we really have made a lot of progress.  And, in the grand scheme of things, we really are almost done.  Only a few major projects left! Continue reading ‘Gray & Yellow’


•October 26, 2012 • 2 Comments

“Tell me that you love me more.  Sleepless long nights, that was what my youth was for.”  Sorry, just a little Feist for ya.  I can’t help breaking into that song when I start counting.  Goes back to when Gav was OBSESSED with that song-mostly the Sesame Street version, but it’s a great song either way.

ANYWAY, the upstairs is coming along nicely.   A lot slower than I would like (due mostly to the fact that I can’t just jump in the car and head down the street to Ikea.  Pains me I tell you).

Here’s what I just finished and I think it makes things look TONS better.  I painted the steps.  Yes, again, much like my painted fireplace, painted stairs aren’t for everyone and it took some convincing of Josh to give me the ok.  Half way through the process, he came up to see my work and nodded his head in approval.  I never do anything TOO crazy around here.


These babies were WORN down.  The previous tenant had removed the nasty carpet (thank goodness for that) and at some point someone (not us) painted the walls and did a horrible job keeping the splatter off the steps.  I scrubbed and used about a gallon of paint thinner trying to remove the old paint, but to no avail.  A good friend has painted steps and she told me the secret…….there is no secret!  They didn’t even put a coat of poly on them!  Woo hoo!  My kind of (quick) project.

And after:

I went with black because, well, I had a lot of black paint left over from the playroom (more pics of that to come…when I have time to pick it up and make it picture worthy).  And I noticed that often Gav would go up the stairs and count them as he went.  That gave me the idea to put numbers on them.  (Cheapo stencils from Hobby Lobby painted with more leftover paint).

I figure I’ll have to touch these up once in a while but since the only thing upstairs is the playroom, they don’t get a ton of traffic.  Heck, some days the kids don’t even set foot up there.  Just a few weeks ago Tate finally mastered his fear of being up there alone.  Sigh……… But I have noticed him also counting as he goes, so at least now he can count to 16 and get the order right (his out of order three year old counting used to drive his brothers nuts).

And in much more exciting than painted steps news…..our exterior is ALMOST finished!!  Josh came home from work yesterday and exclaimed that he now likes driving up to our house.  Me too.  I’m in love with the paint color. Thank goodness for Josh’s industrial sprayer and several really nice days, the body color went on easy and quickly.  It took another few days of painting trim, and we have a guy coming this weekend to wrap our windows so we don’t have to paint all that trim around 40+ windows.   Can you imagine?? Once the windows are wrapped I’ll post before and after pics.  It’s pretty remarkable…if I do say so myself.