Saturday, February 26, 2011

Wait - did you mean ME?

How sweet is this??

Low Country Living sent this my way yesterday - first one ever - and when i see who else she awarded it to - i am in awesome company!  Thank you LCL!!!  Ladies - go visit her and take a look at her awesome cottage renovation - i can't believe she's moving but i can believe she sold it fast - it's gorgeous!

Ok - i'm supposed to share 7 things about me...which, i'm sorry in advance, will bore you to tears - but here goes...

  1. I have to live near water otherwise i feel like i kind of can't breathe.  I can see the lake from my driveway and while i don't have to be able to see the water from my house - i have to be able to get to it quickly.  I don't know why that is, but i do know you will never see me living my parents' life in the mountains.  I need H2O and sun. LOTS OF SUN.
  2. I was a flight attendant and it's the only job I've ever gotten in trouble to the point i was removed for 3 days without pay.  It's also the only job I've ever walked off - like quit - before the shift was done.  I think it's fair to say that was not the job for me.  
  3. I totally forgot my first date with Vance.  He drove over 2 hrs (he lived on the west coast) and got a hotel so that he wouldn't have to drive back and i totally forgot we even had a date - didn't have a sitter for the boys - and to just make it worse - when he called to say he was on his way - i actually said "Who is this again?".  Yea, not my finest moment.  
  4. I plan on the sky falling.  I am the worst case chick - every time something good happens i look for the bad to come out of it.   It makes Vance nuts.
  5. I actually like to clean the bathroom. 
  6. On the other hand - I HATE doing laundry.
  7. I'm totally in love with my life right now. Truly, madly, deeply in love with where I am at this point in my life. 
Ok - on to those I'm passing this along to - please visit these chicks for some great inspiration - you will find some wonderful, heartfelt posts as well as decor inspiration.  Love these blogs. 

Living the Dream
7924 Cottage Way
The Amazing and Incredible Invisible Blog
The Center of Myself
Infatuated With Homes and Gardens
Walnut & Vine
The Woodard Gang

Stylish Blogger Award....
-Thank the person who gave you the award and link back to them in your post. 
--Share seven things about yourself.
--Award seven recently discovered new blogs.
--Contact these bloggers and let them know they've received the award.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Tell Me re-caulk my shower.

I know...titillating stuff.  

I thought about starting a series called "Tell Me How Tuesdays" where I would walk you through some stuff that I've been doing on my own.  My man has been doing a lot but I carry my own weight here  - i mean, i feed him and stuff  (yes, that DOES count).  But I come with my own skilz..But then i remembered...i'm not so good about this blogging with regularity thing - so scratch that. So maybe i'll just title these "what i did on my weekend instead of cool stuff like drinking margaritas and laying by the pool i don't have".


The first thing I said to everyone around me when we first looked at this house was "OHMYGOSH DID THESE PEOPLE NEVER CLEAN???". the realtor, to my husband, to my kids....they were there.  Ask 'em.

It was dirty.  Like, they should have been embarrassed, dirty.   

This is what I saw when we looked at the shower - fair warning - it's beyond gross.

and i cleaned. scrubbed.  and while the tile would come clean, the caulk and grout had seen it's better days.  I knew what had to be done.  And, I knew I would have to do it. The man - he was on other projects.  And my whining would not help.

I needed to re-caulk and re-grout.  

Here are some facts about me:  
  1. I know how to do a lot more stuff than i tell Vance I know how to do (thanks to what my parents affectionately dubbed Baptist Bootcamp when I was young and would get into trouble - meaning i got put on restriction a lot and was given many. many household chores).
  2. I actually ENJOY  most of these things - I hate the getting ready part though - the going to the store or rifling through the garage for stuff - but i LOVE the actual doing.
Now - also know this.  When you have a project like this - think about putting some good tunes on the iPOD and just plan on this taking more than a few hours.  You cannot rush this process or processes.  Just tell yourself your going to be using your kids bathroom for a week and then start having more wine after dinner.  

Here is the timeline that i worked under for just the re-caulking process:
Day 1 - remove existing caulk
Day 2 ( look, i said i take my time, ok?) - Wash down down frame with bleach. Let dry for 48 hrs.
Day 3 Wipe down with rubbing or denatured alcohol and then re-caulk.
Day 4-5 - Do nothing. Let caulk cure. Go to the beach. If it's raining or high humidity out, wait an additional 24 hours.  Remind yourself that you are awesome for doing this all by yourself.
Day 6 - You can use your shower again.

So... there are some necessary items you will need:

Ok. Let's get to it.

First...get rid of the gross old caulk - can you believe I touched this?

Just take that putty knife and run it around all the offending caulk and start scraping it away! Goodbye gross mold.  If you want immediate gratification - look at your feet...You can use that fancy schmancy caulk removal tool if you want - i like my putty knife - your choice.

yeah...gross stuff.

Ok - you've got it off.  Now do like i did and and call it a day - OR get on with your bad self and clean the shower seams down with a  bleach rag.  Make sure all that mold is gone.  If you proceeded onward and wiped it all down - you have to wait for at least 48hrs for it dry thoroughly or you will be thoroughly disgusted when your new caulk job doesn't stick. 

Trust me when i say STOP and set your timeout timer for 48 hrs. If it's raining and/or you're in the deep south  - 72hrs.

Alright - you're back - how were those 2 days off? 

Now - you're ready to one more quick wipe down with the alcohol.  I've used both denatured (which I prefer to use but didn't have any) or rubbing.  They're both great for any leftover greasy residue.

I left one thing out of that item picture up there - blue painters tape.  If you want crisp lines - you need this.

Go get it - and tape off a 1/8th width on both sides of the joint where you're going to caulk.  Many many people don't do this. That's ok. I like small caulk lines that look like i hired someone to do the job. 

If you want large, sweeping caulk smudge all over the place that's just going to get moldy eventually - knock yourself out, throw caution to the wind and do the job without it.   If you want crisp - go get the tape.

Don't let that caulk gun you see laying in the background throw you - i did not use it.  The husband thought i needed it because he didn't know i was using caulk squeeze tubes.  I hate caulk guns - they're way to bulky for me to use.

Now it's time to caulk.  Cut the tip off of the caulk tube at the first slanted line closer to the point.  If you cut it off at the second line - your caulk lines will be too large.  

Start at one corner and squeeze it down the shower glass seam like you would squeeze an icing tube. It's ok if you get tired and have to stop in the middle like this:

Because you will just take your finger and run it down the seam and even it out  - and because you have taped it off, it won't make a lick of difference - it will still be a tiny caulk line.  

Once all your seams are caulked - remove your tape.  Do not wait to remove the tape because you will run the risk of comprising the seal of the caulk once it's set.  

See? Crisp, clean and SMALL caulk lines.  

and isn't that up there better than this?

Awesome blossom huh? 

yea, i'm pretty darn pleased with myself.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Some days you need someone to say it.


I mean, we get up. Get coffee started.  Get dressed.  Get the kids up. Get THEM dressed.  Get breakfast. Find homework. Wake the man.  Get his coffee poured.  Say to the kids...brushyourteethputonyourshoeswheresyourhomeworkdoyouhavepracticeafterschool?????

And then they're out of the house and you sit down and realize...

your coffee's cold

you didn't brush your teeth

the sweater you put on is inside out.

you haven't brushed your hair

.....and if you want to be perfectly honest with yourself you can't remember if you showered yesterday.

It's nice to be told...that's all i'm sayin'.

Be careful out there.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Sometimes opportunities just present themselves.

Last Saturday a bunch of us in the 'hood got together for a  grown-up Valentine's dinner.  

We all got sitters and made our way to the upper west side - code for the other side of the pond that divides our neighborhood - and on our walk down the street, what did we come across?

A toilet.  

At the end of one of our neighbor's driveway.  Just sitting there.  All by itself.  Minding it's own business.  Waiting on Monday's trash run.

Now, throw in some cocktails, much conversation about the toilet, some potty humor by our men-children and some attendance taking of who skipped the dinner...and what do you think happened next?

The men-children left the party at midnight and ran back and picked up the toilet and placed it here - in front of our other neighbor's house that didn't show for dinner.

And what you can't see (because i took this pic all the way from the end of my driveway the morning after,  before Tom got up to get his paper and find this obnoxious prank on his sidewalk) is the note that the boys, i mean men, left.

"Shitta came to dinner"

They never grow up - do they?

Monday, February 14, 2011

Two People, One Card.

I have said before that he begins where I end.  I truly mean that.  And as if i needed proof...

That's right...we bought each other the same card.  I think that's both hilarious and validating. :)

    when we were laughing about this over coffee being poured - i told him that it was too perfect a card not to buy it.  The inside of the card says this:
You're the best thing that has ever happened to me.
I just wanted you to know that.
I can't stop feeling thankful for your sweetness 
and your gentle ways.
I can't imagine not being with you today and tomorrow,
and every tomorrow beyond that.

more than I can tell you and 
I want to spend my life trying to be the best thing that 
ever happened to you.

So true.


Sunday, February 6, 2011

The Fireplace Is Finished! And yes, there are pics!

It's taken FORFREAKINEVER...but i can see the light at the end of the tunnel.  My poor man.  He has been to Lowes so many times over the last month that they offered him a job.  Just kidding.  On the job part.  

It's not that this project was overly problematic - it's more that we had several projects going on at once.  This is just one of them. And we actually have real jobs that pay us and want us to show up on Mondays and work until 5. So there was constant stopping and starting.  And little boys who have winter football and spring baseball that are overlapping.

Oh..and my parents.  They're still here. want to see the goods, right? are some before shots.  But....because we don't have it together enough to take a decent before pic and the realtor pic of this fireplace was lost when my laptop crashed...i had to make do with a pic from christmas morning.  Yes, morning.  I know it's dark outside the windows. That's how we roll here - up and at 'em at 6am.  Yessirree bob. 

I know, this picture is really not a great before. Here is better closeup.  Also, make a note ladies that when you ask your husband to take a picture of something, anything, make sure he understands what the subject is.  In this case, it was not the TV as one would think.  It's of that absolutely stunning tile. 

 Here is the look i was going for....RMS inspiration...

 And now that you've waited almost as long reading thru this post as it did to do the darn is where we are trimmed out, fireplace mantle and surround built, new tile inset and hearth and bookshelf builtins.

As you can see, we still have some things to finish up (like the blue painters tape isn't really the look i was going for there)  but i really wanted to show off what Vance and my dad have done because it's so pretty.  There were some things that i wanted that weren't in the inspiration pic - and i think the men in my life pulled it off quite well. The room isn't big enough for free standing furniture pieces to house the electronics and i have absolutely nowhere to store books so i asked them to create a built in space beneath the windows and it came out great i think.  

Originally, i wanted to do the mosaic surround like in my inspiration pic, but my stepdaughter, being the design diva that she is, suggested i go with something more timeless and i think she was spot on.  Love the travertine inset and hearth.

The trim needs to painted - right now you're looking at only primer on everything. And we need to redo the orange peel on the sides of the fireplace where we had to replace the drywall after tearing off the tile.  But we are nearing the finish line and i'm so glad. 

Hope you like it!

Linking to Transformation Thursdays and Inspiration Fridays - go there to see more cool stuff :)

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Hall Bath Inspiration...FINALLY

Hi cupcakes!  It's you know what that means...Inspiration Fridays, now at the Picket Fence.  Meet me over there for some great pics.

With some good old fashioned encouragement from you guys (thanks bunches btw)...I spent some time last night trying to put a plan in place for the hall bath.
Ok girlies, I will paint the darn cabinet.  I'm skeered to screw it up, but i figure it's better than that awful orange.  

I'm sticking to the color family in my inspiration for the house that hangs in my bath - but going deeper hues since it's the boys bath.  Are you tired of looking at her? I promise you will only have to look at her 100 more times until the house is done. promise.  (And thanks to Megan - I now know the artist...and not at all surprised that we share tastes in art)

And i do believe i picked the most expensive bath art out there in my board below. Seriously, how do i do that?? These are from Ballards.  I try to not even go to that site unless i have money to burn - and i don't - so I need knock-offs and i need y'all to help me find them.  Megan - you're good at this (hint hint) Subtle aren't I?  So here's my polyvore on the hall bath...first, the bath again...and...where it's headed!  I'm super excited.  I can't believe i have a plan...

Note the beadboard behind the pics here...yep - doing that too.  I have no original ideas - but i can sure steal 'em!  That was a great idea for the wall.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Mothers and their opinions....and a before shot of the bathroom

Mother:  "When did you decide to stop cutting your hair?"

Me:  "I didn't stop cutting it.  I'm letting it grow out."
Mother: "Did Vance tell you to do that?"
Me: "No...I made the decision all by my 41 year old self"
Mother: " makes your 41 year old self look older than 41."
Me: sigh.

I so wish I was making that scene up. 

Anyway...on to other things that she can critique later - like my bathroom reno that needs to get underway.

Here is what i affectionately call the bowling alley.  It feels that way to me - with that long expanse of wall on the left.

Sadly, this is not the true's just ugly still.  The true before would have shown you lemon yellow walls but fortunately for YOU my computer crashed awhile back and took that unpleasantness with it.  This is the after where i couldn't decide on a paint color and slapped the family room paint on it - which of course - is blue.

Let's break down this sad bath..

I know. I know.  You're thinking I'm a design diva. I can't even type that with a straight face.  


There are a few things that i'm ok with in here.  The mirror.  And the dark hamper. Oh, and that vanity tray with the goodies on top.  That's about it.  And you really can't even tell what the hamper looks like but trust me, it's all PB knock off cute from Target.

Everything else gives me a headache. It's a hodgepodge of mixing houses together and forcing things in there and nothing matches and i hate it.  HATE IT.  Hate the lamp, hate the soap canister, hate the candle, hate the shower curtain. hate the orange cabinet. hate the ...well you get the idea. And i have no clue what to do.  Seriously.  

I just know it needs to be crisp, clean,   I have become smitten with crisp.  Like these.

                                             from Maillardville Manor
                        RMS - love this. A lot.

And then, there's my Heather Chadduck bath...but i'm realizing that i'm already over the map thing.  And I'm thinking it's little too rustic now.

And there was a time not too long ago when we bought this...and this was supposed to be the jumping off point for the colors all through the house. And this ain't goin' away. I love it. It's over my tub and I realized that i kept straying away from it because i was trying to make all the old stuff work.  And it's not going to. So it's all going away. All the burgundy, olive, dark stuff - gone.

New House.
New Marriage.
New Look.

as cheaply as i can get by with it. ahem. and as long as i can hide the evidence, i mean receipts, we should be good.