Thursday, October 11, 2012

And then things started coming together...sort of.

I wish I could be one of those people who blogs on the daily. But the reality is that with a baby on the way (in 2 weeks!), a full time job, keeping up the house, thank you's to write (from my showers a MONTH ago) and the need to just doesn't happen. Plus, I really don't have much exciting stuff to discuss everyday. I know, this is news to some of you who already know me. I come from a long line of talkers...the kind of talkers who are talented enough to talk and listen to the conversation next to them (and interject into said conversation when & if necessary, which is typically the case)!

But I digress. There's progress being made in the nursery. That's what you all came here for, no? At last you checked, things were looking a little um, well....not put together. At all.

But now we're ready to change some smelly diapers, amongst a lovely gallery wall! 

Everything is a thrifted find with the exception of the two large frames (from Target), the letter E (from Hobby Lobby) and the small silver frame (from West Elm). The large mirror was an $8 Salvation Army score that I sprayed pink. The federal style mirror was previously gold, but I felt the wall needed more white elements to white it became. I'm not in love with it, but it's staying for now. I figure I can always spray it gold when & if I change my mind (for $25, I'm not losing sleep over the state of this thing). The vintage ballerina was a Goodwill find that I'd originally purchased for the frame....but something told me to hang on to this gem, that one day we just might have a girl. Boy, I'm glad I predicted that one! I should start playing the lottery more. The smaller circular frames were $1 each at the Goodwill. I've had these for-ev-er...again, I was hanging onto them in the hopes that we'd have a girl. I changed out the random picture inside & replaced them with some fabric scraps. Easy peasy. Come to think of it, the details of this wall would have been a hell of a lot easier to explain with some close-up shots. Oh well, this is what you get when I grab the Iphone (in haste) 30 seconds before leaving for work.
I'm also totally happy with my decision not to paint the dresser. I was quite set on painting it white, but then my guilt complex took over & now I'm content with this decision (as is the husband). I decided to keep the existing hardware (and returned the Anthropologie ones last week). I'm still trying to decide if they are going to get some gold Rub 'N Buff. But for now, I think they'll stay as is (the black Target frame, however, will be getting a coat of that stuff this weekend).
And in a moment of haste (and some significant time spent on Pinterest) I decided to change out the frames over the crib. I liked them, but didn't love them....something just always seemed off.
So for a few dollars worth of embroidery hoops and some fabric scraps, we've got ourselves a new focal point over the crib.

I realized, after hanging them, that they're a little low. I might have to rethink the state of this wall when baby Keefe gets old enough to stand in her crib! But for now it stays, I'm loving it. One of the hoops was broken (something I didn't discover until I got home), so I'd still like to add another one to make the wall complete. But overall, I'm SO much happier with this wall than I was with the frames. So sad, bye bye frames. We'll find another purpose for you soon.
And the acrylic bookshelves are up! They're currently holding about 1/2 of the books we got for baby, but I'm thinking we can interchange them when we feel the need. I really stuffed those babies in there (trying to get bang for the buck!). I'm not sure how legit these shelves are...but so far nothing has come tumbling down...I'm hoping that's not the case anytime soon.

We'll be hanging window treatments this weekend, as well as my DIY mobile pom poms for over the crib. With any luck we'll have the light fixtures changed out this weekend too. And then baby can come home...but not a minute sooner (can you imagine having that much say in the matter?). 

Friday, October 5, 2012

Friday randomness

Okay, here we go. Lots of randomness on this here Friday...

First and foremost, I can barely see my feet. Which means we're in the homestretch here! THREE weeks and counting people!

dramatic, altered image to prove that I DO in fact have feet

And if I'm being honest, I'm scared out of my fool mind to have this baby. My doctor is hoping to induce me between 39-40 weeks. But unless anything is medically wrong, I'm putting my foot down, listening to my body & hoping baby makes her debut when she's good and ready. In other pregnancy related news, I'll be happy when I can one day put on my pants and shoes without feeling like I'm competing in the Olympics. For reals. Yes, it's selfish (I want baby out...sort of, but not really), but that's reality these days.
I decorated for fall. I don't know why. This stuff will probably still be up at Christmas. So please, don't judge.
I ordered these shelves earlier this week, and in a matter of days they showed up at my doorstep. I can't speak much for the company or the product, but if their prices and fast shipping are any indication, it's safe to say I'd purchase from them in the future. I found these via Freckles Chick who used them in her daughter's nursery...the power of the blog world, I tell you. This idea saved me a trip to our nearest Ikea (in Canada) for some other ledging I'd had my eye on. In fact, depending on how backed up customs is on a weekend, I'm willing to bet these shelves showed up a heck of a lot faster than I can get myself over the border...  

I also ordered this for a whopping $13.50!
#8774 Bracelet T-Bar
I desperately need to get my jewelry organized since I've moved everything out of baby's room. We're running out of space in this house. We really need to move (another story for another day), but since that's not really in the cards for us right now, I've been forced to come up with creative solutions for storage. In a perfect world, I'd use my quiet weekend to my advantage and organize every last inch of this house. But for now I'll start small...with an acrylic bracelet holder.....
The husband is away this weekend (and he took the dog too...peaceful heaven on earth!), so some girlfriends are coming over on Saturday night. I'm thinking to make these...
Pinned Image
I'm putting all my pinning to good use...we'll see what the verdict is. If the picture is any indication, I'm thinking these are going to be goooo-oood. Yum.
And with that, I'm off to enjoy my productive, peaceful weekend!


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Epic fail

Remember this $7.99 Salvation Army find?

Yep, just clasify this project as one And to think I sacraficed the yoga pants, all for nothing! I had intended to rewire this lamp from the very beginning--not only for safety reasons (it was pretty old & crusty), but also because a 3-way setting made much more sense for late night feedings. I'm no stranger to rewiring lamps, but this baby proved to be too much of a challenge for your's truly. After undoing the existing wiring, try as I might, I could not get the new wiring threaded through the base of this lamp. After trying unsuccessfully 3,298 times, I figured the only option was to hack this thing in two. But at some point you learn to cut your losses, and instead go straight to Target for a replacement...  

It was an unexpected $68 I hadn't planned to fork over for a lamp. But since everything in the nursery (with the exception of the crib) is a budget/thrifted/Craigslisted find, I suppose $68 was a small price to pay in the end. It sure beats the $350 price tag for the West Elm lamp that I've had my eye on forever. I'm still debating it's prescence and placement in this room. But maybe that's just me being indecisive. Not to mention this room has gone from bad to worse in the last week. Don't believe me? Well, check 'er out!   
I keep telling myself that things have to get worse before they can get better. Right? We've gotten 95% of the husband's wardrobe out of this room, and into his new closet in another room. Closet space is at a premium in this household, so transitioning him to another room has been nothing but a challenge. Almost daily (without fail) I find him going into the nursery and then exclaiming, "this is NOT my closet anymore". Like a daily affirmation of sorts....
I intended to paint the dresser white, but had a massive guilt complex a few days ago (this was the husband's dresser since he was little). As much as I would have loved to paint this thing, I just couldn't bring myself to do it. Which I think relieved the husband as much as it did me (yay--one less thing to do in here!). So I went to Anthropologie at lunch and bought a bunch of new hardware...which took me no less than 30 minutes to make a decision. And now I'm pretty sure I don't like any of what I purchased, and therefore a return trip to Anthropologie is in my near future. Pregnant people shouldn't have to make such intense decisions....
Besides, we'd rather be dressing up in our Halloween costumes or taking naps! 
Yep, this is how we entertain ourselves around here. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Nursery progress

Yep, that's all you get for a title today. Creative, no. Straight and to the point, yes.

At some point I intended to do a little update with all the DIY things I'm working on for the nursery. Then last week a tornado. I'm trying to balance work, two doctor's appointments a week, a maternity shoot (I hope to have pictures to share soon!), and then we were both in our friends' wedding this past weekend.

And yes, this is the only photo you're getting. I'm slightly mortified by how large my face has grown over the last 8 months.Yikes.
Anyway, without further ado, here's how things are currently looking in the nursery. I'm a little behind in terms of being at this point ("ready" as in D-O-N-E), but slowly but surely we're getting there. We'd better's 4.5 weeks and counting folks...


We still need to change out the light fixtures, hang some window treatments (another DIY I've dreamed up in my head!), finish the DIY pom pom mobile that will hang over the baby's bed (holy crap, wait until you get the lowdown on those things....holy time consumption!), order & hang some shelving for books, paint the dresser, and last but not least....put stuff away! I'm so ready for the closet and drawers to be organized alright, already.
In the meantime, I'll share two super easy DIY projects I've already completed for the room. Can you guess what they are? If you said the frames above the bed, and the side table...well, 2 points for you!
The frames were $2.99 each from Christmas Tree Shops. They looked a little something like this when I purchased them...
I loved the size, but the peace sign? Not so much. I bought 6 of them figuring I would find a way to get rid of that god awful logo, and if not...all 6 were going back. 

And just as I dreamed in my head, they were super easy to remove. Peace out, peace signs! The frames then got a few coats of glossy white spray, but when I got around to actually hanging them, the white was way too white. I'm aware that my second attempt at changing up these things meant that they'd turn out to be the exact same color of the walls (what are the odds?), but they're much better than the stark white version that were staring at me before. Also, I'm too exhaused to care at this point. For now, the frames are holding some extra scraps of fabric. I'll probably add some of our maternity photos when we get those back from the photographer.
Anyway, moving along. Any guesses what this cute little side table used to be? Yep, a $19.99 hamper (or is is a garbage can?) from HomeGoods. I gave it a few coats of gold spray & for $30-ish the guys at my local hardware store cut a piece of glass for the top. I opted for a fairly thick piece, which drove up the price. But we're taking no chances here. At this point I'm actually wondering how long it will take for the husband or myself to break it during late night feedings...
You may recall that I'd was in the major throws of a side table conundrum, but in the end, this DIY project was more fun & cheaper than my original plan. Plus, I'm pregnant and change my mind on a daily basis. So there. 

So there you go! The current state of the nursery. I'm hoping to tackle more stuff this week and weekend...I'm getting larger by the day & my comfort level is basically non-existent, so tackling projects is only 800 times harder than they would have been if I'd gotten my ass going on the nursery earlier. Coulda, woulda, shoulda!

Monday, September 17, 2012


Well, it seems I'm a bit overdue for an update these days. So much for my promise of "exciting daily nursery posts!" I should know better to make promises...

Anyway, this post is going to be all sorts of random, since it seems like the last week has been a bit of a whirlwind, and I'm in MAJOR nesting mode. I'm a type-A, organizational freak on a normal day...but throw in pregnancy and it's gotten worse! I've realized that nesting is really difficult when 8 months pregnant. It's getting harder and harder for me to manuever when doing daily, mundane tasks let alone decorating a nursery and organizing every last drawer and closet in our home. Want to see why?

Hello classy work bathroom shot! Also, I don't know why I look so mad in this photo...maybe it's because I feel like a fat guy in a little coat...remember that from Tommy Boy? I sing it in my head everytime I put this thing on. It looks cute & seems like a good idea....until I actually have to wear it.  


The husband was gone for part of the weekend, which is why I got to make things like this...yum, so good (btw--this would be considered a snack to him)...

As a total side note, I've become completely obsessed with Natalie's blog...a lot of good things going on over there...
It was Navy week in Buffalo! Aside from a morning of shopping to beef up my fall wardrobe, my mom and I took a spare minute to venture out to the of my few breaks from working at the house this weekend. Which was a productive one, mind you. But breaks are good for my sanity.


We also introduced this little gem into the baby's room...
It was a Craigslist find that I scored for $20 (!!!) about a month ago. If I'm being honest, this is not what I'd envisioned for the nursery (I was thinking something big, comfy, tufted, etc.) nor do I know if this is even going to be comfortable or work for us in the end. But we're on a budget here, and this fit the bill. Not to mention I love the details. AND it was in perfect condition folks, perfect! I never actually met the seller since she wasn't home at the time of pick up, but she sounded young and just wanted to unload this chair because she was moving (about a week later I found the same chair from another seller on Craigslist for $50!). I told the husband that if we don't end up using this, was only $20. I certainly won't be crying over spilt milk.   

I opted not to paint it like I'd originally planned. Not only would it be time consuming, but there are way too many white elements being added to this room. So a white chair (which is what I'd envisioned) just wasn't in the cards here. I'm planning to live with things as is for now...again, this chair may or may not pass the comfort and practicality test once baby arrives.  
Assuming I don't nest myself into one big pregnancy nap, I'll be back tomorrow to share some easy-peasy, affordable DIY projects! I mean, SO easy they shouldn't even be considered DIY... 


Monday, September 10, 2012

Learning to go with the flow (and a nursery update!)

Seven weeks from today, I'm scheduled to have a baby. Or something like that. If only these things were a bit more predictable, right? The 'have a plan for everything' gal (who carries her planner around religiously now thanks to weekly doctor's appointments) can't seem go with the flow. Call it nesting, or call me crazy....either way, that's how I'm feeling these days.

Lately I've been totally overwhelmed with a list a mile long of things I'd love to accomplish before baby arrives. Of which, the husband informed me last night that none of that stuff is important. And he's right. Our house is sloooowly closing in on us (could it be the ridiculous amount of baby gear that's taking over?), but since we're not in the market for a new house, I just have to deal. I've been ordered for weekly non-stress tests at the hospital from now until when the baby arrives (at 35 years, I'm old y'all!), and baby passed today's test with flying colors. She's definitely the husband's child...just go with the flow....

I've been tackling the nursery one day at a time. It seems like I'm making zero progress in there, when in actuality that's not the case. But I figured it's now or never for an update on this space! Of course, before pics would have been nice (when the nursery served as a spare bedroom), but instead you're getting a glimpse of the room in it's current state....


It's really difficult to get a decent shot of this room (it's really small), but there you have it! We're currently working on the closet--priming, painting, adding some simple shelving and another hanging rod. I'm thinking that will work much better than the one shelf, one hanging rod we had going on when the husband's clothes were hanging in there.
The shear curtains are going, going, (soon to be) gone. The husband will thank me later when the new blackout panels will help the baby sleep more. Or at least that's what we keep telling ourselves.
We didn't bother to change the wall color (Napery by Sherwin Williams). I tried my darndest to find a pale pink to match the fabric that will be incorporated into the space, with very little luck. But this color coordinated just fine. Which means one less project to have to tackle in this room! And that's all right by me.
The dresser still needs to be painted. That's a project scheduled for this weekend. Again, something else I just keep saying to make myself feel better.
The white frames above the crib are a little project I took on this week. They are uneven & one frame has yet to be hung because when you live in a 100+ year-old home, hit a stud all the freakin' time every now and again when trying to hang something. I'm planning to give that last frame another chance this week. I'm just hoping the hanging 'mobile' that I'm creating (one of the many things I've got going on at the same time) will cover up my crappy hanging job.
And see that nice, soft, white, NEW area rug? Well, the dog peed on it yesterday. We.can'
The end.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Yep, we still have stories

Perhaps they're not as dramatic as they seemed to be last week, but none-the-less, we still have stories. It seems I'm a bit overdue for an update of any kind these days. And since baby is coming in less than 8 weeks and I'll probably forget I have a blog (or the time to talk about anything house related), I should get on with it.

So first and foremost, we've made significant progress on project hallway: part duex. As you may recall, the husband took care of all of the big stuff. And then I jumped in and helped paint (the no-VOC way, of course!). Then the carpet was installed last Thursday. And since then we haven't bothered to do a damn thing. There is still a lot of paint to touch up, hardware to install, window treatments to be purchased and hung, new light fixtures to be installed, and we need to organize our coats, shoes, hats/gloves back into the space. You get the picture. Busy work.

But let's back track, shall we? Two nights before the carpet was installed, I got started on this little project for the baby's room...

...spraying this $7.99 Salvation Army find. Every good project starts with primer, right (of which, I've learned the hard way over the years)?
Well, I'm here to tell you that this s*&t is for the birds. This worthless crap came flying out of the can like silly string. Then a gust of wind blew through the yard and misted the entire right leg of my black yoga pants. It's a good thing our closest neighbors haven't been home all summer, or they would have witnessed the crazy pregnant neighbor cursing and flailing about the lawn. Also, I'm not getting rid of the yoga pants, so if you see me at the gym and wonder why I have paint on one leg...well, now you know. You're welcome.
So, project 'paint the lamp' was officially over for the night (before it really began), and project 'get your ass painting the hallway before the carpet is installed in less than 48 hours' began. Boy, I'm glad we went the no-VOC route so I could help the husband, but I'm not happy we went with this...
Natura Paint from Benjamin Moore
You guys, never again. I think the husband and I spent the first hour bitching and complaining at how awful this paint was. It was like working with liquid enamel, which as you can imagine was all sorts of fun (especially after working all day & coming home to paint all hours into the night). Once we got a handle on how to work with this paint (it wasn't easy) we spent what seemed like another hour debating about who was the better cutter-inner. I'll spare you the agony of having to guess...but it was me. I've taught myself how to cut in with a good brush (totally key!) and quality paint. But cutting in with this paint proved to be nothing less than a that's totally doubled while 8 months pregnant. To add insult to injury, this paint required TWO coats (even with the already primed walls), and as I headed back to our local BM retailer to buy another gallon, I couldn't help but think....well, there goes $120 down the drain. I complained to an associate, to not much avail (as I type, I'm still waiting on a response from the folks at Benjamin Moore...we'll see how well that goes). So, lesson learned. I'm still a tried and true BM fan...I'll just never use the Natura line. Like, ever again.

Okay, so here you go...some crappy updated shots of the hallway (in it's current state)! It's so hard to take photos in a space this small, but I think you'll get the general jist.



The substituted carpet looks WAY better in person than it did on the sample board. So we're totally pleased with our second choice. We're also loving the color of the walls (see, something good did come out of the whole painting fiasco), and the white moldings totally brighten the space. And the plaster walls also look a heck of a lot smoother in these photos than they do in person...either that or my photography skills are totally lacking (that's probably more like it).
So this is the point in my story where you are all thinking, "great Katie...we can't wait to see the finished, finshed space when all your tweaking is done". Well folks, you would be wrong. After the carpet was installed, I headed back to work and found out I got a flat tire from a TACK the carpet guys carelessly didn't pick up in our driveway! Yep, this sort of thing only happens to me, I tell you. The good news is that my year-old tires were still under warranty, so the repair was 100% covered. And after 2 days of silly string-like primer, shitty-ass no-VOC paint, and complete and utter exhaustion...well, that's just about the best news I'd heard all week.
With the bulk of the hallway work under our belt, I've been able to dedicate a lot of time to the nursery. Which I'm excited to share updates! I'll be back next week with daily (we hope) updates to show you what I'm incorporating into the space. It's slowly coming together. Now, let's just hope baby doesn't get any funny ideas and come arriving any earlier than she should! 

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