Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch Changes

So you may have noticed that I changed the look of my blog! I am reallyreallyreally happy with it :) I think it suits my design aesthetic better than the old one which looked a little too Victorian for my tastes. I am currently obsessed with the whole Pink And Turquoise look. It is how I plan on doing my kitchen. So perhaps staring at these colours on my blog will help me get my butt in gear on working on the horrible 80's flashback that is my kitchen.
Wish me luck!

ps- what do you guys think about these colours together??? Do you love it or hate it? Would YOU do these in your house, or just keep it online?

Renovating As A New Mother

I love my baby girl. She is an amazing little person and I have enjoyed my year at home with her. I had grand plans for the time I had away from work, and some of the things on my list where accomplished (like doing the den, the bathroom, and some gardening). Other than that... OH BOY was I unprepared for the time-suck that is child rearing! It is really really hard to get things done around here! Or to keep them clean enough to take pictures of all our hard work, or time to write blog posts about them! I try to write while Else is sleeping, but as I write this paragraph she is upstairs not taking her nap like a good girl should, and instead is warbling away to her Fisher Price aquarium in her crib. The sound makes my heart sing but it does not help the creative juices flow.

Else at 11.5 months, looking adorable as usual!

I really want to show you guys Else's room, because it was the first room that Greg let me have total control over and I really really love it. BUT.. it is always a stinking mess, and I can never get the pictures up on the wall like I want to.... so I have yet to take pictures of it. And now, I am going to move my vanity out of there so that when I start back to work I can let the baby sleep while I shower and do my hair (this room was "my room" for the whole year that we had it done and painted before the little one showed up). So, this means I will be rearranging things anyways, and perhaps that will give me some time to take a few decent pics and post them up for you.

So until that day comes.. you'll just have to wait :)

a sneak peek of the room from when Else was 6 months old, picture done by my friend Jen Allison

So, my advice to new moms (or moms with older kids cause I know the energy levels certainly increase as kids grow older) is to take things one small step at a time and eventually you will get what's needing to be done, done. But don't expect to have a bi-weekly or even monthly blog about it cause dudes... it took me a month to even THINK of cleaning my vanity out of the bedroom upstairs!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Some New Buys

I, as always, have found some fun things at the thrift stores. Here they are!

amazing little brass and fake wood record stand. holds 150 records.
rooster planter, who needs to be actually planted, hangs out with Celetron in the kitchen

green pyrex mixing bowls that I use almost every day, and new pink pyrex dish with lid and tray!

little blue pyrex casserole dish in really great shape

Rance the partridge has glowing green alien eyes. spooky.

little bowl from an estate sale that will be a planter for either haworthia or orchids
In other news, we've started restoring my turquoise oven!!!!! How exciting! Greg is thinking he is going to rewire the whole thing (the cooktop, at least) and possibly replace the elements with new ones, but we'll have to see if that is possible. We're going to get the chrome ring around the cooktop and all the little element rings re-chromed, so it will be shiny as new. There was alot of old grease and also mouse poop inside:
at least it got used a lot. that is a sign of a good stovetop!

can you find the flintstone vitamin??
Speaking of old and gross, we had to replace our furnace. We had our annual maintenece done and the guys come up the stairs with a sheepish look on their face and the bad news is that there are cracks in my heat exchanger. AWESOME. I am SO SO glad I didn't call in the winter, like I was supposed to. Lucky for me it was nice and springy out last week so having no heat was no problem, my house never went under 17.5 degrees and was in fact 19 or 20 for most of the three days we were furnace free!
new furnace
old furnace

Our old furnace was 19, which is a good age but not end-of-life. It was 100K BTU's which is a lot for our little house. the new one is a 2 stage mid efficiency, which is all we need. I pretty much got the furnace from freecycling, but it is a long story to tell so we'll just go with, we got a furnace that was used for 5 months installed with some new ducts for $1300. Try and beat that, I dare you!
Anyways it is nice to have heat! We are removing our old air conditioner (which is probably as old as this house! no jokes!) and this is what we found when we removed the condenser:
See all that junk on the metal? That is nicotine. And tar. And all the good stuff that goes with smoking in a house for 50 years. It's really effing disgusting.

One last pic before I sign off! I just want to show you the Gerard Method of securing one's home from intruders:
You take some metal strips (and not even heavy metal, but aluminum) and screw them into the window sash. Problem solved! Thanks Gerard, we can sleep well at night now!

The Hallway of Tears. Apricot Nicotine Tears.

If there is one colour that I cannot stand it is the colour PEACH. I hate Peach in all of it's incarnations. Light peach, dark peach, orange or red or pink peach.... it's like your walls are covered in flesh. Nasty, outdated flesh!
So, you can imagine how I felt about the hallway in my house. It was painted this really awful colour of peach that sometimes looked like a light pinky peach, then turned into orange disgusting nicotine-stain apricot when the light was turned on or the sun went down. It seriously sucked the life out of the house. It was a black hole where instead of seeing nothing all you saw was the colour of death.
I didn't take any pictures of this colour because frankly, I was afraid it would break my camera. It is, however, in the background of some pictures I have so I'll show those to you:
you can see how it is kind of dark and flesh-y back there

this is the light pinky peach
the colour during daytime was much like the colour you can see on the metal part of the light

this is really how it looked at night, with the light. see how it sucks the light out of the space? 
The Girl and I went away for a 2 week visit in Aylmer, and to do some renovations at my parent's house, so Greg stayed home and painted this hallway's ass off. Because BIN smells so bad, we can't really use it with the baby around, so it was the perfect opportunity!

We have used the Behr colour Antique White in the entrance way in the front, and it is a light coffee brown and is a good neutral colour for a large space such as a hallway with bad lighting. So, Greg took on the giant job of painting the hall. When it goes up the stairs, it is really really high (like, 2 stories high, or 1.5 I guess) so poor Greg had to get his ladder up there to paint in those high corners, but he did it and you know what? It makes this house feel SO MUCH BETTER! It's like the spirit of the house has been lifted. The air seems lighter!

Here are some pics of the finished product:
brown is boring but there's not much choice for such a big, affecting space

can't tell with Else is happy about the new colour or that ground beef is on sale
The next little sneak peek that you get is the Picture Wall which is at the top of the stairs. Here it is in it's unfinished glory:

there will be beadboard and a chair rail here, also some pictures. hence the name Picture Wall

mmm I love this wallpaper! it was the stuff I was going to use on the old closet in the den, I'm glad I could find a use for it now! check out the shiny woodgrain detail behind the cute roses!
So that is what we've been up to. Greg also painted the bedroom but it is not ready for its reveal yet. Soon enough! Once we get a carpet and perhaps a bedspread, you will see how cute it is too!

Peace out and try not to cry over peach paint.