Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Nursery Makeover Phase One

Right now we have one priority around here... getting ready for baby.  D-day is less than 4 weeks away, so we're getting tight on time and we have to move fast.  This past weekend we tackled the first two nursery projects that had to be done:  evicting the cats and removing the sliding glass doors that led to the backyard.

Here's the back wall of the nursery before:

The cats are okay.  They seem a little bit confused about where they get fed now, but they've figured out where their litter boxes are, so that's what really matters.

So on to that door.  The first step, was of course, getting the old door out.

In the process we made a few interesting discoveries.  Some interesting old wallpaper:

And the floors under the dirty old carpet:

The floors will probably stay for now, as refinishing/replacing the wood under the tile will be a bigger project than we can get into in the next few weeks.  Needless to say, the wallpaper will be going.

Fortunately we had help from a few knowledgeable (and awesome) friends and were able to get all the framing, insulation and drywall done in one day!

Here's a look from the outside.  The plywood is temporary, of course.  We might have to get creative about the siding.  A future project.

We got an awesome old wooden window from Judy at Old House Painting & Restoration.  She completely restored it for us so that it is in perfect working order and matches the house beautifully!

Finally, here's the finished, drywalled wall with the window all installed!

The next steps are tearing down the wallpaper in the whole room, repairing the plaster, mudding the drywall, adding trim, and on to painting!  We're excited to keep going!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Things Have Been Happening...

Hello again.  I can't believe we haven't posted since before Christmas!  It's not so much that we've let the blog go to the wayside (although we did, I suppose) but... we've also let the house go to the wayside over these past months.  Life has been busy, but we have managed to get a few things done around here.

In January, after being living in this house for about six months, we finally got the rooms configured the way we wanted them.  We had originally thought we would take the front bedroom, so we had moved all of our bedroom furniture in there and moved our TV and futon into the back room to use as a sort of den.  With the living room full of boxes, however, we decided to keep the cats confined to the back part of the house (which is separated by a door), so we started sleeping on the futon so that they wouldn't be alone.  This was supposed to be a temporary arrangement.


Fast forward to six months later (January), and we're still sleeping on the futon.  So we finally decided, for a few reasons, that the back room was a great bedroom and went ahead and switched the furniture so that we could start sleeping in our bed!


The rooms are still extremely unfinished, so we'll save real life photos for another day.

In February, we (and by we I mean mostly Matt) managed to get half of the kitchen cabinets painted and in working order.  Back in September we had sanded and painted all of the doors and drawers (notice the handy hooks in the sunroom!):

But they had just been sitting there ever since.  Until finally:

Check out the awesome shelf liner:

So the bottom is done, but the top cabinets are still on standby.  It will happen one of these days.

Just this weekend we were thrilled to receive a donation of an unwanted couch set for our living room!  Until now, we've been living with this much furniture in our living room:

We've been in this house for over a year and for the first time we can sit and enjoy all rooms of our house.  It's a temporary solution, but we think it looks great for now:

And yes, there are STILL boxes in our living room that have yet to be unpacked.  It's a work in progress.

So there is one other thing that we've been working on around here (which will receive it's very own post, coming very soon).  THE NURSERY!!!  And guess what happens when we don't post for months and months... we only have a few more weeks to finish it up!  We'll keep you posted!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

A Little Christmas Decor

Decorating for Christmas is a favorite, but this year with a hectic school and work schedule before some late (for us) Christmas shopping and planning, serious decorating is taking a back seat.  Not to mention that parts of the house still looks a little like we just moved in, so decorations would probably just blend in with the mess.  Nonetheless, we did put up a few decorations to make things a little bit more festive around here, so we thought we'd share some photos:

We don't have any outdoor plugs near the front of the house, so our lights had to be inside for now.  We hope to have this resolved by next year!

Merry Christmas!!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Bathroom Art

Just thought we'd share a little something that we bought for ourselves in September.  We bought it from a local photographer here in Portland.  The photo was taken at a local salvage shop.  Can you guess where it will be going?

We are not only excited to have a little bit of art for our bathroom, but the photo also gives us some beautiful colors to pick up whenever we get around to painting.  See the blue on the bathtub toward the right.  Wouldn't that be a beautiful color for a bathroom?

Friday, November 4, 2011

Fall Flowers + Garden Projects

It's been a while since we posted anything about the house, hasn't it?  We've been very busy with work and the return to grad school.  Any free moment we've had has been spent keeping up with our lives (dishes and laundry primarily).  What little extra time we've had beyond that we've spent outside trying to get the yard ready for the winter.  So here's a quick update.  We had some beautiful late-blooming flowers around our yard this September and October.  Here are just a few:

After we cleared this corner of the yard a in late August, a mystery flower popped up.  It seems to be some sort of lily:

It finally bloomed in late September:

Here are some more little surprises that popped up in September and October:

In October, Matt's parents came for a visit and lent us some of their gardening knowledge and skills.  The biggest accomplishment of the weekend were two brand new raised beds.  In one we planted spinach and two types of lettuce and in the other we replanted the Chinese ground orchids that were already growing in the back yard.  Many thanks to Matt's parents for the help!

In late October, with the threat of overnight frosts upon us, we went out and winterized the banana tree and the orchids.  We cut the banana tree (which had gotten quite out of control) down to the ground and covered in in mulch to protect the roots from the cold.  If we get a really cold spell we will additionally cover it with thick black plastic.  Supposedly when the weather warms up it will start to grow new shoots.  We'll see!  To protect the orchids, we simply layered as much mulch as we could fit into the raised bed.  We'll continue to add more mulch as it starts to break down and we'll cover the whole bed if we get much really cold weather.  Hopefully they'll do just fine!

When school ends for winter break, our top priority will be finishing up the kitchen cabinets so that we can put away our dishes!!  Lets hope there will be a post about that before Christmas!!
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