Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween

I hope everyone had a safe and fun night!
I know we did!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Coat Rack Teaser

I've been procrastinating today. Instead of cleaning my house for a birthday party, I've been building something.

I really want to show it to you tonight, but the pictures are ugly! Lighting is so, so important to get good photos. And it was pretty dark by the time I was done working on it.

I already installed the coat rack. I wasn't going to do that until the trim was completely painted. But I'm impatient. And I like order and organization and we were greatly needing that in our entry room. So I will paint around it.

My oldest says it's ugly. But I disagree.

The wall where it will go.

 In the process of building.
The hooks we chose. And yes, one of my boys etched their name in our desktop. Good thing its temporary.

The room is looking so much better. But I know it will be hideous until we can buy new doors and do the flooring.

Until then it will be organized.

This is from a few nights ago. Aren't October skies the absolute best?

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Costume Ideas

It is kind of last minute but I am not sure what to be for Halloween.

The boys are recycling costumes from previous years. All except for Ethan, that is.

Last year he was a zombie grandma. This year he will be a clown. I am actually slightly afraid of clowns. Not a fan at all. I think I saw Stephen King's It when I was young and it scarred me for life.

We borrowed a wig and clown shirt from my brother. The rest we haven't gotten nailed down yet. I get to have fun with his makeup but we haven't decided on the look yet. Here are some that he has in mind to take inspiration from.

I know those are meant to look scary. But Bozo isn't much better.
Yep. Still scary.

I am debating between a few things.

One idea is to be a doe. I really liked the makeup on this girl.

But I think it's a little more simple than I like to do.

Then there is the idea to be a fox....even if it is a little trendy.

And my last idea is to be a glam 50's girl.

But it is a little boring. So maybe I'd have to add a little of this. But not quite so much.

And I'm talking about the makeup. Not the clothes at all.

I need to decide on something quick. Is it weird that I put this much thought into it? I can't help it. I love dressing up. I have almost every year in one way or another. It's so much fun!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Our DIY Double Oven Cabinet

I am so, so happy. We have an the house!

It is finally finished. We have owned the house for a year. We have occupied the house for almost a year. I've had a cooktop for about five months. I talked about that here. And now we have an oven. Just in time to be able to bake some goodies. I can make some cookies to celebrate!

We have had our double oven for quite a long time. I blogged about it here. We got it second-hand from a suburb of Chicago which I found on Craig's List. It was barely used and a price we couldn't beat. I looked up a similar model online to see what it would cost new. Almost double.

So it has been sitting in one garage or another until this weekend. It was not easy to get into the house. But Scott, the boys and I managed it somehow.

To start- we bought three sheets of cabinet grade plywood from Menards. This stuff is not cheap. But it is very strong and matches the cabinets we got from Barker Cabinets online. The wood veneer side of the board already has a shiny, protective coat on it. The reason we built this cabinet is because it is much cheaper, but not easier. If we had it in our budget we would be ordering the rest of the kitchen cabinets we need from the same place. But that isn't possible right now.

I measured the oven and figured out how deep and wide we needed the cabinet to be. The first pieces we cut were the side pieces of the cabinet. Then we cut out the shelves. The screws we used were the strongest and biggest I could find without splitting the wood. We pre-drilled all of our holes first.

For assembling we brought the pieces into our entry room. The floor is much more level than our garage and we didn't want to scuff up our wood floors in the house.

Then we ended up moving it the house close to the space where it would go so we could check measurements.

I had an idea to build little shelves in between the wall oven cabinet and the wall. There is a doorway with trim right next to where the cabinet would go. I was worried about the door of the oven not clearing the trim around the doorway when the oven was open. Scott went to work trying to make that happen.

He built a tall and narrow box to take up some of the depth because it didn't make sense to have four inch shelves that went back 27 inches. I hadn't even thought about that detail.

We also put braces along the back of the cabinet and used those pieces to attach the cabinet to the wall. The narrow shelves were attached to the wall first using Kreg jig pocket holes. Then we put the cabinet next to it and screwed the cabinet to the shelves from the inside of the oven cavity.

The problem with plywood is the raw edges. You can see the layers of wood stuck together and it doesn't look very nice. That is where this comes in.

It's not expensive but makes it look so nice. It isn't too difficult to apply. You just use an iron. But the hardest part is trimming off the excess after it is applied.

We also had to reroute the electrical down in the basement. There had been a previous electric double oven but it was in a different location. The wire wasn't long enough to reach our new location so we had to undo it and bring it a different way so that it could reach. Then there was the fun part of trying to find the right spot to drill the hole, installing the box and hooking all the wires back up. I didn't get any pictures of that part.

There was a certain point during this process that I panicked a little. What if the oven didn't work? We bought it second-hand over a year ago. It sat outside for a year. We built a cabinet specifically for it. What if?

But I am here to report (very happily) that it does indeed work. We lifted it into the space and flipped the breaker. I've never been so happy to see a blinking clock in my life. I also turned the oven (both) on to make sure it got hot.

The top and bottom will eventually have cabinet doors.

 This will be a nice space for cookie sheets and pans.

I still need to fill some nail hails and cracks with caulk. But I put my cookbooks on the shelves to give an idea of what it will look like.

Crown moulding will run along the top of the row of cabinets once they are all finished.

Next to build- the pantry cabinet. Then the fridge cabinet. And then the cabinet on the end that will hold the microwave and garbage.
Now to test it out and see how it bakes! Woo hooo!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

In Process

I feel like I've been drinking from the well of creative waters lately.

I've got so many ideas swimming around in my head.

I have also been full of energy. It's a nice change.

Scott and I have been working on a few different things. We have a birthday party coming up in a week and there is lots we would love to get done.

We've got some more painting done in the mud room but it still needs one to two more coats. The trim also needs to be finished. I will take quality pictures during the day tomorrow since it was too dark when I thought of it today. However, you may be able to tell a difference in one of the pictures to follow.

We started building the cabinet for our oven. I've spent a lot of time thinking about it and planning it. We've had the wood panels for it for a while now. I would've started it myself except for the fact that the panels are way too heavy for me to handle. It's nice to have Scott helping too because he tends to be a little more precise than I am.

We had to buy three panels for $50 each. Not cheap but it would have been so much more to have someone make this for us.

In this picture we have already cut out a shelf piece from the full panel. You can also see our beautiful double oven behind the lawn tractor. It's partially covered by a blanket. I get so excited thinking about having an oven!

This is the bottom of the side panel.

And a shelf.

And here is the cabinet looking more like a cabinet. It still has a ways to go yet. And it won't have any doors on the storage above or below for quite some time. But at least I'll have an oven!

I'm not sure if you noticed but that is in our mud room. Are the walls looking a little brighter? It is so much better than the dingy, disgusting color that was in there. Getting closer. I'll do a separate post on it.

Two projects in the process of getting finished. This weekend will hopefully prove to be very productive!

What crazy weather! I love how everything is white except for the circular patches protected under the canopy of not yet leaf-less trees.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Rug Question

For those of you out there that have rugs in your house- Is this normal?

Do rugs normally pill up like this? 
I've always had mostly carpet so I'm not very familiar with the upkeep of rugs. 

This is how it looked after vacuuming. 

I seriously sat on the rug for an hour picking at all the fuzzies. I'm sure there was an easier way but nothing came to mind. I know they make tools to help you with your sweaters. Is there one for rugs? Will I always have to do this?

This is the size if my fuzz ball after completing one-third of the rug. 

It was ridiculous. 

It looks so much better now... But my back is killing me. 

What you could've seen in the picture above if I had aimed my phone up a little higher was my mountain of laundry. I actually meant to take a picture but was on such a roll I forgot. I had to put on my hiking boots to climb up it so I could start folding it. It was THAT bad. 

I also went through each of the boys' drawers and closets and did the official passing down of the hand-me-downs. It's been a while. E is 12 and had some 6-8 size stuff in his closet. Whoops. 

I vacuumed all of our hardwood floors. I got to suck up lots of spiders. That's always my favorite part. 

I unloaded the dishwasher and loaded it back up. Ran it again. 

I finished the last load of laundry. (Which added to the mountain). 

I dusted a little. Took out the garbage. And did school with Noah. 

This is not typical behavior on my part. 

So when I get extra energy I hop on that train and ride it as far as I can go. Today it was pretty far. 

I'm exhausted. Time for bed. 

And if someone has a good tip for de-pilling a rug let me know. 

Monday, October 21, 2013

Estate Sale Miss

I get emails from a company that gives a listing of all the local estate sales. 

I haven't been perusing the pictures like I normally do. I don't really have the time or the money to actually buy anything. 

On Saturday, after watching a cold and rainy soccer game, I checked out the site. There was an amazing sale in Grandville. I was needing to head that way to a certain store sooner or later. So, why not?! My mom-in-law was up for it so we headed out. 

I wish I would have copied some of the pictures that were posted for the sale. There was loads and loads of stuff that I love. There was old furniture, doors windows, crates, bottles, lamps and so many miscellaneous things. They had it listed as a Shabby Chic and Pinterest Paradise. And it the photos. 

We've had a lot of rain in our area as of lately. This sale started on a Thursday and we went to it on Saturday. Most of the items were outside. There was a few tents set up but not nearly enough. 

It was a disaster and so very sad. I was glad I wore my rubber boots. Mud city! Everything was soaked and bug infested. I have a strong disdain for earwigs. 

I had a particular item in mind. I saw a beautiful curved wood bed frame in the photos online. I figured it would pry be gone but I had to check. 

It was there, but in pieces and soaking wet. Lots of items were wet that otherwise would have been awesome. 

I should of just got it and tried to make it work. But there was a chunk of wood missing that I couldn't find. 

And here is some other photos of the sale. 

It's just too bad. 
There was a lot gone so there must have been a few good things worth buying. I'm wondering if the owners had a previous antique business. 

Anyone else see it or go to any other sales? Do you think I should have bought the bed frame anyway?