Sunday, October 30, 2011


Please enjoy some recent and random conversations with our four year old.

Mom: Maddy, what did you learn at church today?

Maddy: I learned about guitars. And I really really want a guitar, because guitars make you wild. And Mommy and Daddy, I am wild. I will learn to play guitar and then I will leave the house and never come back.

Dad: Uh, I think that was probably the part of the story she wasn't supposed to empathize with.


Maddy: Dad, could you please show me some of your moves?

Mom: What do you mean moves Maddy, you mean like dance moves or what?

Maddy: Oh you know, like your cool moves.

Dad: (cracking up) Maddy, why don't you show us your cool moves first.

Maddy: (looking sheepish) Sorry Daddy, I don't have any cool moves yet.


Mom: Maddy, could you hurry and say the prayer so our cereal won't get soggy?

Maddy: Dear Heavenly Father, please bless that our cereal won't get soggy. Amen.

Oh man, I wish I would write these down as soon as she says them, because she has me laughing several times a day. These are the few I could remember. I love that girl.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

With a wave of my makeover wand....

we switched our formal dining room out for an office/craft space! (no but seriously, how do I get one of those magic wands?)

First of all, let's get this out of the way--I am annoyed with my pictures. I want to blame my camera, but it's probably me. I feel like my photos lately have been coming in not quite as clearly as before. I think I might need to get my camera cleaned and re-calibrated. Or I need lasik. I feel like I can't take pictures of my house if my life depended on it. Oh well. :) So anyway, this used to be our formal living room. Once we redid our other eat-in area, we found we were eating in there a lot more than ever. I hate having wasted space in a house, and started rethinking the formal dining room. Of course I have zero money, but that never stops me. I just used what I had. The dresser was in our closet and now houses my craft supplies.
 We brought both of our desks in here and I really love it. I get lots of sunlight and I can have Maddy working on coloring or other stuff in the same room.
 This bookcase just got shifted to another wall.
 I did get a new urn from Goodwill a while ago. I thought it looked kinda pumpkiny.
 Switched out this area (where my desk used to be) and put our shoes in those baskets underneath.
 Another goodwill two dollar find. Maddy loves to play with it. We practice dialing 9-1-1 on it, since that's the new big thing at preschool.

 and funnily enough with the title of this post, Maddy is wearing an "I'm Grumpy" t-shirt. It runs in the family. (as does using the measuring tape).
I snuck this chair back into the room. I love these old ratty school chairs. They will never leave me.

Hope you liked my mini makeover.

Gratuitous Commentary is my Speciality

I don't know if I have anything particularly witty to say about this latest installment, except that we carved some pumpkins and by golly, you're gonna read about it (or skip it). I also feel that I need to use the term by golly a few more times. By golly.

I love how they ended up carving like this, Maddy in the middle of Daddy's arms.

Concentration, Concetration, pumpkins are dying, babies are crying...what? you don't know that song?
oh my sweetheart. Can you see the glitter on her cheek? We were practicing for her costume.
Getting non-flash pictures at night is not easy. I just wanted you to know. Maddy kept sticking her tongue out while carving and it made me laugh. She is the micheal jordan of pumpkin carving.

Yes, we let her wield the sharp stuff. She did a great job, and Dad was watching very closely.

And apparently threatening her with further bodily harm if she harmed herself.
A different angle
I kinda love it. I held it up over our heads and didn't even look through the viewfinder. Lucky pic

I stuck that bow in her hair just for the pictures. You caught me.

Oh and Mr. G was there too, and he WAS NOT HAPPY ABOUT IT thankyouverymuch. :)
This picture cracks me up. Can you tell we're kinda used to his fussing lol. Dad and Maddy just keep working.
But why won't you looooove meeeee? Poor wittle baby

And then Mama gave him some baby snacks and he was happy again (and soon thereafter was packed off to slumberville.
The finished spooky product. By golly

She looks so dang old in this picture. Excuse me while I go and wake her up and demand she stop growing right this second. Holy cow.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

don't give the mouse the cookie

Have you ever read the perennial classic, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie? If not, you are not only missing out on one of the best kids stories ever, but also an allegory of truth and woe.

Yesterday I decided I wanted to move our old timey radio (that's what we call it) and had the brilliant idea that it might fit into the built in next to the fireplace. This is what that ended up looking like:
 in case you were wondering, yes I did measure. There is a lip on the front of the shelf though and it just barely couldn't squeeze past. And also, yes I did try to do this myself. I sent John this picture in a text and said, "Um, not one of my better ideas..." He's used to me by now.

So anyway, just as in the story of that tiny rodent that began by only wanting something as innocent as a cookie, pretty soon I had to start moving all sorts of things around and by the end of it I somehow decided to change my formal living room into an office/craft room/photography area. I'll post some pictures soon.
this is what the kitchen started looking like during the process. See? Just like the book!

Luckily for the mouse and for me, their partners in crime don't wring their necks by the end of the book/moving stuff around. Although I think he was tempted.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

By Special Request

Presenting, in dolby surround sound and dark and grainy documentary style footage, the bubs learning to crawl. (this was about a week ago, he has mastered the art of crawling now and is pretty fast. This one you can still see him learning. For the love of all cuteness).

Y'all know you can ask for baby videos at any time and I would give them to you right? I just never thought anyone would want to be tortured by them except for us!

True Life Confessions

1. I let Maddy listen to this Beyonce song. We sing it at the top of our lungs in the car. I always feel slightly ashamed, but when she sings, "WHO RUNS THE WORLD? GIRLS!" I just love it a little too much.

2. I am surprised every single time that someone tells me that I am good at something. I got to "overhear" a facebook conversation about how creative and cool I was, and I was in complete shock. Creative, who, me? Um, I don't feel creative, I don't feel interesting. I am constantly amazed that anyone reads this blog. But it warmed my heart so much.

3. Lately I have made quite a few dinners from things I saw people pin on pinterest. So far, not a single one has failed me. YUM. (the sauce below is the most recent one I tried and it is to die for).

4. I still really love to dance, and I do it all the time. But every time I dance, I think of this commercial. It makes me laugh...and cringe.

5. Every woman should own a pair of stretchy, cottony, black yoga pants. Not only are they comfortable, but you can wear them out in public and pretend like you didn't also wear them to bed.

6. I miss having a book club and a reason to have fancy parties.

7. The floors in my bathroom need a good scrub, but I hate cleaning bathroom floors. I really really really want one of these.  It can both vacuum and then mop. Anyone have one and can tell me how they like it (or another brand)?

8. I hate to be one of those people, but I am already so excited for Christmas. This has never happened in the history of my life since I was 8 years old, but I just can't wait. I don't know why.

9. For those of you that asked (cough, Kendra) our local airport is the Charleston Airport. :)

10. Did I mention on here yet that Grant is crawling and has been doing so for over a week?? He is so so so cute. Also, that may be why I feel that I need a Shark Vacuum and Mop. All of the sudden the floors seem filthy and covered in danger. Oh man.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

I was armed, I was armed (and other tales)

 I just kinda felt like posting some random pictures. Do you like my jumbo basket? I do, I got it a few weeks ago (you guessed it) from craigslist. It was 3 whole dollars. I wanted something big enough for blankets. I love it.

 Then I fall-ified my mantel. It felt good.

My favorite thing to do during Fall is get out these milk glass teacups I found at a thrift store five million years ago and put little LED tea lights in them. They give off kind of a warm yet spooky glow. Perfect.
 The Jane Austen picture just seemed kinda fallish and romantic (and with her dour expression, also kinda haunted housey), so I kept her up.
And the hand-me-down pumpkin sign my sister gave me once upon a time.

Speaking of sisters, I want to embarrass mine and tell a funny story. One time she left me a comment, and let me tell you what she meant to type. She meant to type something about always getting the hand-me-downs because she was the youngest. What she actually typed was she always got the "hammy downs." I never laughed so hard in my life. The mental image of a hammy down is just too awesome.  Plus, it reminds me of all the times I get the lyrics to songs wrong and belt them out while driving. Remember the song, How Bizarre? I thought the guy was saying, I was armed, I was armed! ha, so there you go, Kelly, you know I love you. :)

Sunday, October 16, 2011

At long last, the Kitchen Makeover Extravaganza!

If you want to see the entire series on my kitchen makeover, you might want to check out here and here!

Let's remind ourselves of where we came from to get this post started off right.

Hey, I've learned a thing or two about a thing or two from watching HGTV. You always make your befores look as horrible as possible. That means a sink full of dirty dishes folks. These are the lengths I'm willing to go to just for you. Heaven knows my sink never looks like that in real life....

To see the chairs makeover and the dumpster dive armoire makeover, you can go here.

 ahhh, breath of fresh air. This picture was taken on another day and the lighting was better than most of the others, but oh well.
 I used the same paint from the cabinets on the table. It is holding up great.
 The rest were taken today. I am still loving my red chairs that I made over. You can read about that here.

Are you in love with my light fixture? Because I am. Big time. That was my twenty dollar score at Habitat for Humanity.

I was super impressed that John figured out to hang it. That is one area that I refuse to DIM (Do It Myself). Electricity is scary. My hair is big enough without any accidental help.
Ah, my dumpster dive dresser that I turned into an armoire. More about that transformation here.

I had curtains here at first, but they were just not sitting right with me. So I took the roman shade from Maddy's room and decided to jimmy rig a cover and use it in the kitchen. You'll laugh, but that fabric is from the back of an Ikea duvet cover that I had sitting in my closet. ha! You might ask how I put it on the shade?
If you look really closely you'll see the answer to that pins! No I am not joking. Not only am I the cheapest person alive, but I am also possibly the most likely to short cut something.
But I really love how it turned out.
Then I bought a crab on etsy and that kinda made me happy. I dry-brushed a gold frame with the same paint I used on the bottom cabinets.

Woo hoo, I picture of the done cabinets!
I added beadboard to the back of the cabinets to add some interest, and to make my life more difficult. You know how much I love to complicate my life. (Color used on the upper cabinets is Rustoleum Cabinet Transformations Pure White, the bottom cabinets are Seaside. We didn't use any glaze on either.)

It took me a long time to get everything to my liking on those shelves. I texted pictures to my Mom and sister several times. This is what we ended up with. I love it. And maybe you don't believe me, but we use everything that you see (although granted the yellow teacups are used less frequently than other things.) :)

Oh, and there's my homemade horse weathervane on top. It is made of foam core board and a dowel. I got the inspiration from this blog, which copied the idea from Ballard designs (although I made mine with a different type of base than she did). I wanted a statement piece over the cabinets that could stand alone, since I'm not a fan of tchotkes on top of cabinets. (no offense to any of you that might have stuff up there, I just can never get it to look right).

Another view of the kitchen. Don't you love how my floors look next to the blue of the cabinets?? I also added corbels underneath. They are smallish, but I wanted them that way so that they wouldn't eat into the useable counter space underneath.
I also took out the old hardware and added these pulls from Home Depot's Martha Stewart line. They were actually quite cheap for bin pulls and I LOVE how they look.

And there she is, the love of my life (well after family, cough cough). My new faucet. Doesn't she really make the kitchen look like it's not just trying too hard. Instead, she makes everything look on purpose.

I had the most amazing luck with finding this fixture on craigslist for a fantastic deal, plus the guy installed it for us, which really ended up being worth the money, as our sink gave him a hard time (and he's a contractor!). We ended up having to add that little soap dispenser because the faucet handle was hitting the sprayer when it was off. We were both super frustrated and unsure what to do, and then I thought of a soap dispenser and he put the sprayer in the other spot. It worked out great!

I added a walmart basket on top of the fridge for some extra hidden storage and for looks.

Blue patterned plates are plastic from Target, red stripe bowl from T.J. Max, cups from Ikea, small plates from thrift stores, teacups from a garage sale. I don't think people believe me when I tell them that I get my things for really cheap. It just takes time to collect. :)

Oh lovely lovely floor. I stole the rug from our laundry room.
This is for those that wonder about wood grain. You can barely barely see it in this photo.
I tried really hard to capture it here. Like I said, it really isn't that noticeable.

Where I keep the inevitable plastic stuff that you need with kids. Genius right? Basket found at Target.

Fake topiary also a must

The teacups were an Etsy find that my Mom bought for me a while back. I love them and will take them to my grave with me. They will have to pry them from my cold dead hands. You're welcome for that mental picture. ha!

Hope you enjoyed the pictures. Now I'm going to fall on my couch and sleep for twelve hours. Painting cabinets=not for the weak of heart.