Thursday, March 24, 2011

pickles and pop

For those of you non-facebookers out there...

Jacob LOVES pickles. This picture may make it seem as though he hates them. But he will eat as many as you give him. It's just that first bite..... wowzers!! But let me assure you, he ate that whole pickle and then two or three more :)

And if you're wondering why his shirt is so wet??? Well, he also loves.....
POP. Yes, pop is bad - very bad - for children. But when Jacob sees a pop can he gets SO excited! "Pop! Pop! Pop!" He shouts. And sometimes ya just gotta give the people what they want.... And hey, it's only Fresca ;)

the kitchen.

WAY before - in all it's carpeted-flowered glory.

A little before - the hideous yellow. It doesn't look too bad in these pictures... I guess you have to be accosted by the ugliness day after day to truly come to despise it.

And finally... now. I LOVE this colour. It changes with the amount of natural light in the room. It's the perfect blend of gray, green, and a light brown.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

My baby...... growing up, and really isn't a "baby" anymore. But he still gets to be the youngest family member until Aunt Bethany has her baby in September. Then he'll really have to grow up. Although Jacob doesn't have much of a problem getting older. It's his mommy who wants to slow down the process :)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Spring has Sprung.... hopefully!

Could spring actually be around the corner? We hope so, and here's some proof! Even though there's still snow on the ground, we couldn't pass up the opportunity to pull on our galoshes, rain coats, and get outdoors! Poor Jacob fell twice - and in two of our deepest puddles, no less. Good thing we have extra rainboots from Aunt Megan!!

After starring at their swings all winter long, they finally got to put them to use!

Their most favourite activity?? Wadding through our monstrous puddles!

Climbing a tree - or at least attempting to ;)

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Our.... bed????room

I don't usually like to post in-between renovation pictures. They are always really messy, a little embarrassing, and hard to understand (to me, anyway)!
But... I speak often of our "loft", so I thought I'd give you a visual to accompany my crazy stories. It's been lovingly given this nickname because we don't a have door, and our one wall is open to the stairs and therefore, living room. We don't usually take people up to our loft when showing them our home, because it is usually really messy, a bit embarrassing, and hard to understand ;)
Please forgive the mess - it's almost impossible to keep up with the dust! And hopefully you will be able to make out what is "going on" in terms of the new bathroom.

Standing in Emily's room looking into our bedroom:
The view from my bed. Behind the dresser are the stairs.
Here's the plastic ceiling:
And this will be the bathroom. The jut-out will be the shower.
The new hallway will run from the corner banister of the stairs to the front right 2X4 you see above. The bathroom will be at the end of the hall.
I'm very anxious to have the bathroom usable, if not finished. As you probably noticed, we have a potty upstairs so that I don't have to take Emily downstairs when she has to go the bathroom EVERY night. I know... gross, right??

Hope you enjoyed the "tour"!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

sneak peek

I was hoping that if I went out and actually bought a new paint colour for my kitchen, I would be too impatient to wait and just start painting. Because waiting for the "right" time - a time when I wouldn't be interrupted by either of my children - will NEVER happen.

Well, I was right. I couldn't resist. I LOVE opening a brand new gallon of paint. There's none of that sticky, gooey gunk in the rim of the can, no drips down the outside label. And it's full to the top with the glorious colour you chose.

So it will be a slow going project - a wall here, a coat there. But it will get done. And it will look fantastic.

With the wonderful help of Sandra VanMaanen, I chose "camouflage". I've only painted one small wall, and it still needs another coat, but I already love, love, love it.

Goodbye nasty, anxiety inducing yellow. Hello soft, inviting, calming, relaxing, neutral camouflage :)

Here's a sneak peek:

the actual finished project might be a while coming. But doesn't it look better already????

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

10 things I've learned about DIY renos

1. You will ALWAYS go over budget. Even if you're a bargain hunter. Maybe you'll find the perfect sink on kijiji for $100 less than your "budget". Maybe the carpet you wanted is miraculously on blow-out right now and you save 50%. But then, (especially when you have to budget for a huge project - like, say, an entire house) you find out you need a new roof. That, say, will cost ten thousand dollars. Suddenly the couple hundred dollars you've saved doesn't seem so great.

2. Your renovation will ALWAYS take longer than originally anticipated. Especially when renovating a century home. " Expect the unexpected" is Justin's motto. You never know what you're going to find when you pull up a floor, or take down a wall. This can cover anything from a couple extra days to a couple extra years.

3. Anything is "liveable". Right now when I lay in bed I look through our thin plastic ceiling and watch the bats fly around the attic. I just think of it as having the pleasure of sleeping out in nature while having the luxury of my comfy bed.

4. The little things will drive you crazy, but the big things will go un-noticed. For example, I am itching to buy curtains for our living room. I dream about the fabric and pattern I want. The sheer "used-to-be-white" curtains that hang on our windows drive me insane. I can't WAIT to replace them. BUT - I am currently sitting in a disgustingly green room. Actually, according to my sister (who is a licensed medical doctor) the walls are the exact colour of gangrene. I don't even notice them anymore. Gangrene Green - sounds nice, doesn't it? Maybe Ben Moore should come out with a new shade.......

5. Plaster dust is my mortal enemy. Enough said.

6. Any tool that is labeled "Featherlite" is a huge, HEAVY lie.

7. Each room has the ability to morph into another room. When we lived on Gladstone, our dining room became the temporary kitchen while our kitchen was gutted down to the studs. Our living room then became our living/dining room.
In our current house, we sleep in the "loft" which is the amalgamation of 2 bedrooms, a linen closet, and a hallway. There is a framed up bathroom in one corner, and when I'm not looking up at the bats, I look directly at my children's doors. Privacy doesn't exist in our house.
Also, our playroom acts as a laundry room, and our "washing machine room" is also our only coat and boot closet. (Our washer and dryer are in two different rooms. See #3).

8. My kitchen sink is invaluable. You just can't live without a kitchen sink and still be considered sane. Especially when you don't have a main floor bathroom. I had to live for 5 months without a kitchen sink. I nearly lost my mind. Perhaps I did. I also had a newborn baby, so I'm sure that didn't help. But, I bet you've never noticed how often you use you sink. Not only for washing dishes, but for draining pasta, potatoes, vegetables, etc. For dumping out the last of your soup broth, or cereal milk. Washing fruit, or say, YOUR HANDS!!! Having a kitchen sink is VERY important. Perhaps I might even say, it really is the only thing that negates lesson #3. We ended up moving to my parents house until our kitchen was a bit more "kitchenish".

9. "How is your house coming along?" will be the first question most of your aunt, uncles, and people at church, will ask you. Which is just fine. But be prepared to answer the question a million times.

10. My husband continues to amaze me. I feel like one of my kids when I say "there's nothing that Justin can't do". But I'm serious. There has yet to be a project that Justin hasn't been able to complete. Lately, he installed a 1200 pound beam to replace a load bearing wall, ALL BY HIMSELF. Well, I moved the ladder for him a couple of times. He's amazingly talented. And strong. And I'm very thankful for him.

Friday, March 04, 2011

patiently waiting for spring.

a new spring dress came in the mail yesterday. she HAD to wear it. And she wore it all day.
So maybe we're IMpatiently waiting for spring. Either way, we're waiting.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Emily's Room

Emily's room before we moved in

Emily's room has come together very slowly. It's never been a priority for me, since she really only sleeps in it. Our upstairs is off limits to our kids as there are giant holes in the walls and floors, the occasion board with nails sticking out of it, and LOTS of dangerous tools.
Actually, Emily is old enough and knows enough that she would be okay upstairs on her own. But once Emily goes upstairs, you can guess which little boy cries and cries until he is allowed to follow her. So we've restricted access for now, and once our room and the new bathroom is finished, I'm sure they will both be thrilled to be able to play in their own rooms.
For a long time, her room stayed untouched.
The first time Emily saw her new room

But then (and this would only happen to Emily) she started having nightmares about swirling colours that would attack her. The colours she described were the same colours as the stars on the wall paper. If I wasn't Emily's mother and therefor know her psychotic tendencies, I would have never blamed the stars. But I grabbed the left over paint (thank you, Garrods!) and rolled over the stars. That night, the nightmares stopped. I know.......
Eventually I got around to painting the walls to match her bedding, and I took the shelves down with the intention of painting them white. After a few weeks of trying to find time to paint without my little monkeys trying to "help" me, I had them finished. AFTER all my time consuming work, Justin nonchalantly mentioned to me "you know, I could have picked up some white shelves at the hardware store. Those types of shelves are really cheap." I was a tiny bit irritated. Oh well.

Next came the letters, her most cherished princess poster, and just today, I put up a stick on mural to act as a head board. We do have one for her, it's just "one of those things" that never gets done. Emily is thrilled with the castle, since it goes along with her poster. I think it looks pretty cute, too.

close up of the castle

The finished product, for now. Eventually, she will get new carpet, and I would like to paint the bottom half of her walls an off-white, and put up a chair rail. But for now, I think it's okay.