Friday, April 30, 2010

April's books

Books read in April: 7
Books listened to in April: 1

20. “2nd Chance” by James Patterson (Women’s Murder Club #2)
21. “3rd Degree” by James Patterson (Women’s Murder Club #3)
22. “Hush, Hush” by Becca Fitzpatrick
23. “Some Girls Are” by Courtney Summers
24. “City Dog” by Alison Pace
25. “The Organized Home” by Real Simple
26. “Hunted” by PC Cast (House of Night #5)

15. “Drums of Autmn” by Diana Gabaldon (Outlander #4)
(Why only one? This bad boy was 39 discs).

Favorite book of the month:
“Drums of Autumn” by Diana Gabaldon (Outlander #4)
This is definitely my favorite book so far in the Outlander series. If you like historical fiction with romance and a hot Scottish love interest, then this series may be for you as well. Basically, it's about time traveling and finding your soulmate in Scotland in the 1700s.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Man Cave: more bar photos

Brent was out of town visiting his parents over the weekend, so I wasn't expecting to have any weekend status photos to show off, but he proved me wrong. Less than an hour after he got home on Sunday, he was in the garage making cuts.

This is what the bar looked like before:
Here's the new after:

The goal is still to have this bad boy finished by Father's Day. We shall see.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

In the birdhouse

Me: I think I want to get a bird feeder.

Brent: You don’t seem like someone who would want a bird feeder.

Me: Well, I wouldn’t get a gross, plastic one.

You still don’t seem like someone who would want one.

So you want the birds to starve?

Don’t worry, I’m not letting the birds starve. I had yesterday off, so my dad and I ventured to Wild Bird Center (yay for 20% off coupons) and the Mission Road Antique Mall (JoCo ladies – did you know a 50,000 sq. foot antique mall existed in Corinth Square? I didn’t either).

As my luck would have it though, by the time I got home from my errand spree – I was feeling gross. I knew it was bad when I took a 2-hour nap and felt worse afterward. I’m doing better though and have been fever-free for 4 hours now. ☺

This morning there was an angry bird outside that kept pecking at my dining room window, which in return, made my dogs go insane. Whenever, I walked to the window the bird would go to the grass and just chill like a normal bird. Then about 20 minutes later the bird would start tapping away again.

I took this bird-drama as a sign that it was time to get the bird feeder up. I’m really happy with how it looks – now if only a bird would visit it.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Mood board Monday

I am excited to be participating in my second Mood Board Monday over at pewter & sage.

For this challenge, we tackled the new line at West Elm, which is very nature-based. Everything in this line made me think sun room, but since I did that for the last challenge – I wanted to do something different.

My inspiration was this pillow:
I love the colors, the lines and the femininity this pillow offers.

Because of this, I decided to design a nursery. That's right, I'm now the child-free girl who has designed a nursery. (But seriously, don't get any ideas).

I wanted this space to have some nursery decor, while maintaining enough key pieces (such as the rug and dresser) that could transition on when the said baby is no longer a baby.

Here's my space:

1. The wall color is Martha Stewart's Calabash.

2. My plan for this fabric would be curtain panels. This is the fabric that ties my color scheme together – greens, pinks, white and browns. The fabric is Patio Stripe by Waverly.

3. This is the bedding I picked – I love how playful it is. It's called Tea Rose by gus & max.

4. I have a crush on this crib; I love the modern look it has. The crib is by Oeuf Sparrow and is $690.

5. The mirror is from Pier 1 and retails at $199.95.

6. I found this Oilo Studio Modern Berries light at Modern Nursery.

7. I found this rug at Modern Rugs. I love the visual impact it makes without being over the top.

8. Like anyone doesn't know this shelf is from Ikea. I thought with all the toys and books kids acquire, a shelf like this would be ideal (once mounted to the wall, of course).

9. I found this doggy touch lamp on Amazon.

10. This simplistic photo mobile is from the MoMA Store.

11. Meet Jasper the Dog. Jasper is available in several sizes, but for this room I'd be going big – the 28x28 it is.

12. This green dresser is from Former Furniture. I am all about colorful dressers right now.

13. Honestly, the only reason I'm showing the changing pad is because I figured someone would otherwise ask about the lack of one. :)

14. It's a nursery, I have to show a couple of toys on my Mood Board – I figured a piggy bank, alligator and Uglydoll were the way to go.

15. These Pottery Barn Kids storage containers were totally made for this space.

16. The pillow from West Elm that started it all.

17. This glider is from Modern Nursery. I love the green piping it has on it. This chair retails for $1,294 (don't judge – this room is imaginary).

18. This Kelly Table Lamp is Crate & Barrel, and retails for $179.

19. This Ully Pedestal Table is also from Crate & Barrel.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

9 by Design

Does anyone else watch "9 by Design" on Bravo? This show is my new obsession – it's incredible.

The husband and wife are designers – well, really they are more than that – they basically buy non-houses in downtown New York and transform them into amazing homes. And they do all this with 7 kids.

In the past 2 years, they have moved 6 times.

Here's the basic pattern – they design a home, move in, some rich person falls in love and buys their home, they move into a temporary space while they find a new space and start working on it.

Here's some photos from their Sixx Design Web site:

Seriously, I just can't get enough of this show.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

More bar

First of all, I just wanted to say thank you to all of you who participated in the Just Paint It Challenge. Originally, I was nervous even posting this challenge, because I didn’t know if anyone would want to do it – so it was great to see so many DIYers stepping up to the plate. If you weren’t able to participate in the challenge this time around or just thought the challenge was so awesome you want to do it again, good news – it will be coming back this summer.

Now, on to the bar…

What we left off with:
Okay, now you can blame Brent for the lack of the next photo (I was outside picking weeds, so I am innocent). Before he put the base floor down, the bottom part was insulated.

Now the fridge (keg box) has been framed in:

He also purchased the keg conversion kit, which came to $180 (shipping included).

Up next will be framing and insulating the rest of the keg box.

Monday, April 19, 2010

The fireplace in more detail

I'm blogging and drinking wine. You have been warned.

I wanted to spare the length of the previous post, and do all the talky talky in this post.

I never hated my fireplace, but I never liked it. It was this thought right there that made me take the plunge.


My fireplace was dirty. There was grout that would just fall off if you looked at it the wrong way. Brick is tricky like that, because it takes more work than running a vacuum over it (although, don't worry, you have to do that too).

1. Use sandpaper. You aren't using sandpaper to rough up the brick, you are using the sandpaper to get all the crap out. During this process, I recommend focusing mainly on the grout regions.

2. Vacuum. Now it's time to vacuum, to get all the loose nasty out.

3. Wipe down. I used several damp paper towels over it, to further clean it.

I decided to use the same white paint I have been using everywhere else in my house – Ralph Lauren's Frost in semi-gloss. I wanted to stick with semi-gloss, because the brick would suck up a lot of the shine to it and it would be easier to clean.

The brick on my fireplace is very textured and rough, because of this I didn't use a primer. But if your brick is of a smoother quality I would recommend one.

Once I was done painting, I moved on to caulking bricks that were cracked.


Addressing the screen was the scariest part of this project for me. I decided to take my friend Leslie's advice and spray paint everything indoors, like she did on hers.

When picking a spray paint – make sure you are using one that is heat resistant. Sure, it doesn't come in as many fancy colors, but it also doesn't set your house on fire. (Food for thought).

Here's my screen all taped off and ready to go:

Unfortunately, I'm a moron and got the spray paint on my feet and neglected to realize it. And of course I walked around the family room, leaving a nice film of spray paint dust everywhere. So, if you are wanting to spray paint indoors – stay on your plastic tarp.


While it's might be hard to tell in this photo, the shelves looked terrible once the fireplace went white. Like everywhere else in the house, the previous homeowners were a fan of beige with a yellow tint. When you pair this with white, the beige transforms into a pastel yellow.

Once the shelves went white, I painted the background a different color for a pop.


Let me know if you have any other questions. :)

Sunday, April 18, 2010

It's Challenge Day!

I kept wussing out about painting the fireplace white. This is the reason I created this challenge. Most people have that one thing involving paint they want to get done, but completely dread doing.

I hope this challenge helped motivate you to get something done that you wouldn't otherwise have already tackled. I know it did for me.

I can't wait to see the amazing projects everyone has done.


My fireplace is finally done. I am so happy with the new look, I have no idea why I didn't do it sooner.

What you now see when you walk in the door:
I went ahead and painted the background of the shelves a darker version of the wall color. I like how a different background color just adds a little more visual interest.

* I will post progress photos and other details in a separate post later on.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Challenge Reminder

Just a reminder that the Just Paint It Challenge will be on Monday.

If you haven't started yet, there's still plenty of time to grab a paintbrush and go to town. I'm doing my fireplace – I know others are doing ceilings, front doors and vanities. It doesn't matter what it is, as long as it involves paint and getting to mark that mofo off your to do list.

If your blog is private or you don't have a blog, you can start sending me photos and descriptions now. :)

I'm so excited to see everyone's accomplishments!

Thursday, April 15, 2010


In case you weren't aware by my houndstooth panels and houndstooth header, I like houndstooth...a lot. So when I won the giveaway over at DIY Showoff for a stencil at Cutting Edge Stencils – of course I picked the houndstooth one.

As for my plans with it, you'll just have to wait and see. :)

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Another yard post...

I am not one for the outdoors. So it came as a surprise to me, when it seemed the only cure to my recent funk was being outside.

Instead of taking sanity breaks walking around HomeGoods, I have found myself walking around the garden center at Home Depot admiring all the plants and flowers. I’ve found peace being with the flowers, and with my grandpa going on week 3 in ICU, peace of mind is what I need.

So, for the past 2 weeks, I’ve been in my backyard – picking weeds, battling what I thought was weeds, mulching and planting flowers.



Before you get all jealous that I’m done landscaping or start freaking out about the lack of daylilies on that side, please admire this picture:

That’s right – plenty of happy daylilies. And that’s right – plenty of weed picking/mulching left to do.

Seriously, check out all these weeds:

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Man Cave: Bar Progress

Brent got the exterior frame for the bar built over the weekend. :)

I am really happy about how it's coming together so far. Brent said the plans for the bar are easy to follow, which always helps. We are trying to make this bar as cost effective as possible. Our first trip to Home Depot, which included all framing, screws, glue, liquid nails and insulation came to $250.

I am pretty sure the insulation stage is next. Sounds exciting.

Monday, April 12, 2010

The Experiment

So, I am now being told that these evil, mutant weeds could actually be daylilies. And there are several possibilities why these poor lilies aren't blooming:

1. The soil is bad
2. Not enough sunlight
3. There are too many of them and need to be thinned out

Tonight, I will go all scientific and start an experiment.

My plan is to dig out 3 of these "mystery plants" put them in a pot with good soil, in a good sunlight and see what happens.

Update: The "weeds" are most definitely daylilies. Oops. If you haven't figured it out yet, I am terrible at this whole outdoor thing. I still plan on putting several in a pot though.

Also, just a reminder, the Just Paint It Challenge is a week from today. :)

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Evil plant

Edit: I don't want to delete this post because it shows how "special" I am when it comes to plants – but yes, I know now that my nemesis are daylilies. They are currently living it up in a sunny part of my landscape. So everyone can rest easy. :)

I have met my nemesis.

Sure, it may look as easy to rip up, but it has 10-layers of evilness attached to it.

Look at all the roots – this thing terrifies the crap out of me. Any ideas on what it is?

Neighbors have told us it doesn't bloom, so a flower is out.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Home Depot visit

Brent and I hit up Home Depot after work today.

His cart:
My cart:
Yeah, I think that really says it all.

Thursday, April 8, 2010


While Brent starts working on the man cave, I'll still be plugging away on the family room, hallway, half bath and my first client furniture flip. Yeah, I'm not busy at all.

Right now though, I'm enjoying all the upholstery possibilities for my slipper chair in the family room.As you'll be able to tell from my top 3 patterns, I want to embrace green and white. The top 2 are my favorite.

Cross Section:

Parterre Grass:

Lattice Jungle:
Opinions? Questions? Concerns?

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The man cave – and so it begins...

While Brent and I were cooking dinner last night, he mentioned us needing to make a Home Depot trip this weekend. I gave him a look, and he confirmed my suspicion – it's bar time.

I'm going to admit, I'm excited/fearful for this project. It could go awesomely or err, not so great at all. To help tip the scale in our favor, we decided to find a bar plan we liked and go from there.

We liked this bar for several reasons – the size, the classic layout and of course, the kegerator.

As of now, it looks like the keg portion will be the most expensive part of the bar, but hopefully with the Craigslist searching that can be cut down.

This weekend will consist of buying the materials for the frame. Hopefully then, I will have a productive guy in the basement.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Slight break

As you may have noticed, my house projects and other blogging has gone downhill a tad. My grandpa has been in ICU for the past 10 days, so I have been busy spending time with him.

Hopefully, things will be improving soon and then I'll be able to fully jump back into the DIY madness. :)

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The Nest

So, I knew my house was going to be featured on the Real Couple's Home Tours on The Nest (surprise!), but I didn't expect this:

Living room look familiar? It's the featured idea on every decor page! I am so thrilled and flattered about it. What an awesome surprise.

As for the Home Tour itself, I'm kind of curious how it is currently only 2 pages:

Yet, another link shows all the photos of my house:

Hopefully, that will all get squared away, because I was really excited about doing the Home Tour.

Anyway, that's my exciting news for the day. Now, I'm off to a baby shower. :)

Friday, April 2, 2010


I love the springtime, but I love it even more this year. It’s our first spring in the new house, and with that comes finally being able to enjoy a proper front and back yard as well figuring out the mysteries of them.

Last week, I noticed flower buds starting to pop up in the front yard – it was such a nice surprise to come home to. Then came the fun of trying to figure out what type of flower it was – Brent heard me debate over and over again about whether the greens looked more like tulips or daffodils. I am happy to report that I have daffodils in my front yard.

Now comes the mystery of what other surprises await for me. Brent says we had sunflowers growing in the backyard last fall, but I honestly have no memory of this – I must have been a little distracted by the joy of finally having more than one bathroom.

Weekend plans: The fireplace (yep, I’m STILL painting it)

In other randomness: When I wrote “Springtime” for the title, I really wanted to finish it “…for Hitler and Germany.” But I figured I might scare those off who haven’t seen the musical “The Producers.”

In more randomness: I wonder if I will go on a watchlist for mentioning Hitler. Hmmm, I think my decorating blog just got risky.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Office Feature

Thank you Roeshel for featuring my office on the DIY Showoff today. :)

For those just finding my blog – welcome. If you are curious where I got anything in my office, click here. Thanks for stopping by.