Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Thank you!

I started this post last month, but never finished it.

Whoops. I left the edits I made for your amusement.

I've been meaning to finish up the Thank Yous from our baby shower for over a month almost three months. When people tell you to finish them before the baby is born they're right. The chances of doing anything productive on any given day drops dramatically when you have a newborn baby.

I've been plugging away at them, but I still haven't quite finished. Austin thinks we should go ahead and put the birth announcements in with them at this point. He's got a point. That adds a step though. I feel pretty good about my chances today, but Norie is having a growth spurt and my life is a giant cluster feed so who knows if that means anything. (That was a month ago so I guess it means I didn't get them done.)

She's asleep at the moment though so I thought I'd take the opportunity to say thanks here on my blog. Thanks to everyone who came and to my amazing sister and sister-in-law for throwing us an awesome party and to everyone for the fabulous stuff you gave us. Your handwritten and thoughtful thank you card will arrive some day soon. For those of you who weren't here in person, I assure you it was super cute and vintage-y.

And we got lots of cool presents like this onesie.

And really touching ones like Austin's baby book.

 Apparently Austin was touched and thirsty.

Anyway, I just wanted to say thanks and I really do intend to get those thank yous out before Norie is in elementary school.

Friday, July 20, 2012

It's Infographic Friday!

Is that a thing I do?

Yes, as of right now. Check out this awesome one from Sly Fox about canned beer. It came out in April, but I don't care.


Monday, July 16, 2012

DIY Chalk Paint Trial 2: Kitchen Cabinets

My mom and I were so pleased with the results we got with the DIY Chalk Paint Dresser Makeover that we took on another project that afternoon and finished it the very next day. We used the same 2/3 paint, 1/3 plaster of Paris mix in a different blue I found at my HHW facility to paint the bottom cabinets in the kitchen. I've been considering it for a while. Pretty much ever since March when I had my mom paint the dining room Parchment White. I was on a bit of a white spree and it didn't take long before I wanted to bring some more color back in. After the paint dried we distressed them a bit and I'm really happy with the results.

Why did I wait so long to post about it?

The cabinets are in the kitchen...beauty shots of the kitchen require that you actually clean the kitchen.

I almost got it done on the 4th, but didn't quite make it. Since I've been back at work I've opted for baby time in the evening over cleaning and photography time and it just hasn't gotten done. 

As many of you already know my kitchen has been a source of frustration challenge since we moved into our house. It's not super big, but it has a decent amount of counter and storage space. When we moved it it was at least workable. Hideous, but workable.

At some point I just couldn't handle the darkness and that awful wallpaper border anymore. I lost it and peeled down the border. The bare plywood I found under it sort of forced the issue of doing some spackling and painting the kitchen. I ran out of paint and left the backsplash primed, but not painted. And then I got ambitious and got a couple of coats of paint on the mismatched cabinets.

I never actually finished painting them. I kind of got exhausted and put the knobs back on. It's been that way since last April (as in April 2011, not 2012) Are you sensing a pattern developing yet? I can't seem to finish anything in this kitchen. 

When I first decided to paint the cabinets I did some google image searching (it was before Pinterest) trying to pick a color. I landed on white because I already had the paint when I hit desperation mode. That, and I was in love with Kelsey Grammer's kitchen.

I still am actually and when I can actually afford to redo the kitchen for reals I'll probably go back all white. Right now that isn't happening though. Our budget for kitchen updates is around $5 and without the blue tile backsplash the white cabinets are a little blah. I've been thinking of ways to faux the backsplash, but I think to get it the way I want would just take way more time and energy than I want to devote to it at this point.

And that's where the other kitchen I'm in love with comes in.

Better Homes and Gardens
No backsplash and I already owned a pale grey blue. As soon as we started with the chalk paint on the dresser I knew what I wanted to do next Thank God my mother is almost as nuts as I am and went for it.

Yes, there are definitely plans for beadboard wallpaper to faux beadboard the cabinets in the works. And Mom, please don't hate me, but I think I want to streamline the look when I paint the walls.

Friday, July 13, 2012

We Skype, a LOT

My parents have been staying with us while they wait to close on their new house. My sister lives in Denver. We like to see each other and Skype convos have become almost daily occurrences around here. I took the opportunity to Embrace the Print Screen Button.

Can you tell I really like this Embrace the Camera thing? It should make Norie's baby scrapbook really, really entertaining. :) She has the best facial expressions.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

I Love Research

Last week a friend told my mom she should consider marketing her work at a place called Good Juju in Kansas City. Neither of us had ever been, so we decided a research trip was in order.

First thing Saturday morning my mom and I loaded up Norie and headed to KC for a second hand shopping adventure. After we got there we found out that Good Juju is in an area of KC called the West Bottoms and there is an entire district of antique/vintage/awesome stores there. Almost all the stores are only open on the first weekend of the month and it's an event with vendors outside and the whole deal.

It was over 100 outside Saturday and definitely in the 90s in most of the stores. We spent a good deal of our time spritzing Norie with cold water and standing in front of fans to keep her cool, but we were about to make it to four of them before deciding it was time Mexican food and air conditioning.

I got way too distracted shopping and trying to keep Norie's body temperature below 100 to take many photos, but I did document my two favorite pieces. Apologies for the blurriness. Taking a picture with your phone while holding a wet baby is harder than you might think.

I love this couch. I have no desire to own it. It's not really my style and I'm positive Austin would kill me if I brought something like it home, but you can bet I would purchase it in a heartbeat if I was a professional photographer and wanted an interesting piece of furniture.

I was also a huge fan of this "Lamp of Awesomeness." I'm not making that up. It's what the tag said. From a distance it looked like it was made of old mattress springs or something. It was actually some fiber I couldn't identify, but was much lighter than I expected. Love.

I think we'll go back in September or October when it's a little cooler outside to check out the rest of the shops.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Heigh Ho, Heigh Ho

Last Thursday was my first day back at work after six weeks of maternity leave.

It was an experience. 

I had Austin take a picture of me with Norie before I headed out the door since it was Embracing the Camera day. (Yes, I intend to keep this up even if I fail to post them in a timely manner.)

She's mostly naked because she somehow managed to pee all over herself while I was changing her. It was right before I needed to head out the door so there was no time for a bath, not from me at least. Luckily I was leaving her with my mom and I didn't have to take her to day care.

I finally understand why people with babies are always late for everything. It's impossible to be on time. You have to hold off until the last moment to feed and change them or you'll probably need to do it again before you leave and then they pee or vomit or something all over themselves and you have to start all over again.

The work part of the day went just about as well. I'll tell you all about that tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The Parsonage Bed by Prairie Rain Designs

Remember way back when I posted about Hibbs House Project Week and the bed my mom was finishing?


That's okay. It was in all the way back in March. I'm not even sure if I actually posted about her working on the bed. Maybe I just thought I did since she worked on it all week long. She finished it before the week was over, but I didn't get my room clean enough to take any pictures until today.

Almost the entire thing is made out of reclaimed lumber including two doors. I saw the doors in my parents' garage last year and pretty much forced them to make it for me as a Christmas gift. According to my mom, I gave them both the impression the other had agreed to it. That's not how I remember it, but my mother swears it's true. As I recall, I just asked for it relentlessly until my daddy gave in. Either way, it's gorgeous and it's mine.

Pretty amazing, huh? They do this professionally so you can have your very own if you want. You'll probably have to pay though.


Tuesday, July 3, 2012

DIY Chalk Paint Dresser Makeover

I'm heading back to work this week and my mom and I are trying to make the most of the time we have left. I've wanted to paint the dresser in our bedroom since the day we bought it (5 or so years ago), but I've never made a decision and actually done anything about it. Until yesterday ;)

My mom has a home decor business (Prairie Rain Designs - go check it out and come back. I don't mind) and uses chalk paint all the time. She loves it and I would buy it, but since I'm not doing this professionally just yet and I need to start paying for childcare soon, $40 a quart just isn't happening. I did some googling and found this post with some recipe suggestions. It was worth a shot, right?  

I buckled down and spent a good half hour looking at painted dressers on the internet trying to make a decision about the color.  

Since I already had a ton of paint I've scavenged from the local Household Hazardous Waste Facility including the color I finally decided on we only needed to buy some plaster of Paris. (You really should check out your county's HHWF if you haven't already. You'll be amazed what you can get for free there). We went with a 2/3 paint, 1/3 plaster of Paris mix.  It worked out beautifully.

Here's the before. There was nothing really wrong with it. It was just a little beat up and a little boring.

After we finished painting and my mom distressed it I used a coffee stain to further age it. I forgot to take pictures in between so you'll just have to trust me about how much it improved the look.


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