Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Sprucing up "my" bathroom- for cheap!

One of the things Michael and I were so excited about with getting a house is having 2 separate bathrooms! The hall bathroom is "mine" and the one in our bedroom is "his". Of course we share occasionally.

I made a few small and cheap changes in my bathroom that made a huge difference. First off we removed all the wallpaper and painted along with the rest of the house. The color is Swanky Gray by Sherwin Williams. Then I brought in some stuff from our old bathroom - shower curtain, rugs, flowers, and candles. That was already a huge improvement.

Since we took down the huge frameless mirror to paint I decided to go ahead and replace it. I found this mirror at Home Goods for $35! It fits the space perfectly and adds a lot of personality.

Next, I spray painted the light fixture and cabinet hardware (previously brassy gold) with my handy Krylon Metalic Silver spray paint. I LOVE this stuff! I'm usually not a good spray painter, but this glides on and drys so quick. I took everything off, put on 2 coats of paint, and put it back on in about an hour.

That's all I've done to the bathroom so far. I really, really hate the countertops, but they will have to stay for a while. I was lucky because our old shower curtain had so many colors that it matched the countertops okay. I still want to put some art on the wall across from the mirror.



I know these pictures aren't the greatest. It was a really hard room to get good angles.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Adding some curb appeal

We had a busy weekend doing typical cleaning stuff along with fixing our water heat, but we also had some time to amp up the curb appeal in front of our house. Let me just say - I love it! Here's what we did.

A few weeks ago Michael and his dad pressure washed the house. It was built in 2000 and I don't think it had ever been cleaned. It made a huge difference! They also pressure washed the front porch and then put Thompson's water seal down (a few days later, of course).

Michael's mom also came over that day and trimmed up the Crape Myrtles that line our driveway and the butterfly bush to the right of the stairs.

Then, this weekend we: planted bushes and flowers in front of the house; painted the front door; mulched the trees, bushes, and flower bed; changed the hardware on the door; and purchased a rug and pillow for the porch. Well, that's enough talk...you know what they say about pictures.


After - All 3 Crape Myrtles are still there, I just didn't get the same angle.

Look how much brighter the siding is!




After - we removed the horse shoe after I took this picture. LOL

Close up of the flower bed-

To the left you can see the green and yellow bushes- Golden Euonymus

In the back there are 2 bushes - Camellias

The red flowers are lilies - sorry I don't know what kind

In front are yellow daisies and marigolds

Close up of the chair with pillow and rug. My grandfather built that chair for us for $75. We are going to get him to build another one so we can have a pair on the porch.

Friday, May 20, 2011

My first blog "Before and After"!

I'm so excited to share my first Before and After project for the blog! Today's project is a Craigslist dresser turned TV stand. We had sold our old TV stand when we moved in with Michael's parents because they had a huge entertainment system in the apartment for us to use.

We knew we really wanted to wall mount our TV (we got a flat screen as a moving present to each other) just to keep it out of reach from our son. I also really wanted closed off storage. I really do not like open shelving. It never looks tidy enough for me and I'm always rearranging it. I love it in other people's houses, but not mine. So, I thought a dresser would be the perfect thing - lots of storage while not being seen!

We found this beauty on Craigslist for $60. It has ball-bearing tracks for the drawers so they slide super easy. Also, while it is laminate, this things is VERY solid. My mother-in-law tried to help me move it down on the wall a little bit because it wasn't centered. Nothing was on it or in it yet and we couldn't budge it. It is HEAVY. I liked the simplicity of it and although I didn't like the color I did like the style of the drawer pulls.

It also came with a mirror which wasn't my style. And the TV was going to be hanging above it so we didn't need it anyway. We were going to sale it on Craigslist, but my mother-in-law bought it from us for $10. So really it's like we paid $50 for the dresser.

Here are the supplies I used (sorry the paint cans are so messy):
- Minwax Polycrylic in clear
- Zinsser Cover Stain oil based primer (it says no need for sanding and for me it was true)
- Gloves for working with oil based paint - trust me, it's horrible to clean up!
- A cheap foam brush for the oil based paint - so you can just toss it when your done
- A putty knife, wood filler, and sand paper if you have any places to touch up
- Paint - Sherwin Williams Ellie Gray (leftover from our office)
- Spray paint (not pictured) for the pulls- I used Krylon metalic silver

How I did it:

Day 1: Take the drawers out, remove pulls, wipe everything down. Slather wood filler on any gouges, holes, etc. Wait as determined on the bottle. Sand all the spots you filled. Wipe down again. Apply a thin coat of primer. I waited about 15 minutes then started with the second coat- it had taken a while to do the first coat so where I originally started was already dry.

My husband spray painted the pulls while I was doing this. They got 2 coats on the front and 1 coat on the back.

Day 2: Apply 2 thin coats of paint.

Day 3: Apply 1 thin coat of Poly.

Then comes the hard part - wait 48 hours....

Then put the pulls back on, bring everything inside, and assemble it!

What do you think? My husband was very skeptical of the whole thing. He didn't think a dresser would work as a TV stand. Now, he's told me several times that he thinks it looks awesome. See, maybe I do know what I'm doing! Haha!

And I will say this: while I was working on this I was having my doubts too. When it was in the garage I was seeing every little flaw, but now that it's in the house I love it.

Make sure you check back next week. I will have a new house tour post where you can see all the rooms with the wallpaper gone and paint on the walls! Also this weekend we are working on some curb appeal type things, so I will have another before and after for the front of our house. Here's a peek at our paint colors:

All colors are by Sherwin Williams: Mountain Stream (our bedroom), Ellie Gray (office), Bungalow Beige (kitchen/dining room), Swanky Gray (bathroom), and Shagreen (living room/hallway). Harrison's room color isn't pictured because 1. we picked it out late and 2. we let him pick his room color and it isn't included in the whole house color scheme concept.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Our plans for the weekend

I think that pretty much sums it up. We are having our official moving day tomorrow. We've already taken a lot over, but we still have all the big stuff. AND it's supposed to be raining...FUN! Wish us luck!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Our plans for the house

We have some big plans for this house that will take a while to get done. I am just going to share all of our plans, but I'll give you a sort of idea for time frame.

- Trim the trees lining the drive way so you can see the house! (already done)
- Pressure wash the house and decks. Seal the decks. (Done)
- Paint the front door (soon)
- Replace the mailbox (soon)
- Landscape around the front porch (probably this fall)
- Tear down the back porch and rebuild a porch or stone patio (next year)
- Plant a few trees in the back yard (next year)
- Landscape the existing flowerbed in the backyard (soon)
- Plant a garden (depends on when everything we want to grow needs to be planted, might be next year)
- Get furniture for the front porch (not a priority)

Living room:
- Paint (done)
- Get a new couch (next year)
- Turn a dresser into a TV stand (in the works)
- Get an entry table (next year)
- Buy some floating shelves (this month)
- Make curtains (soon)

-Paint (done)
- Replace countertops (end of the year)
- Paint cabinets (later this year)
- Install a tile backsplash (next year)
- Get a new dining table (hopefully this year sometime)
- Make a curtain (soon)

Hall Bathroom:
- Replace countertop (2013)
- Paint (done)
- Make curtain (soon)
- Decorate (soon)
- Replace builders mirror (in the works)
- Replace light fixture (not a priority)

Our bedroom:
- Paint (done)
- Decorate (in the works...on going project)
- DIY a headboard (soon)
- Get some side tables - hopefully from thrift (this year)
- replace vanity with something more bedroomy (next year)
- replace builders mirror (in the works)
- Replace light fixture (not a priority)

Our bathroom:
- paint (done)
- Make a curtain (soon)
- replace toilet seat (very, very soon)

Both bedrooms:
- paint (done)
- Decorate (ongoing project)

I probably left a lot of stuff out, but this is the idea. There will be a lot of DIY-ing going on and I will be posting it all. Keep checking in!

Monday, May 9, 2011

House Tour!

Here's our new home!

Come Inside!

Somehow, I forgot to take a picture of the living room. Sorry! I will get a picture next time I'm there, but you won't get to see the ugly salmon colored walls because they're already painted. But, you walk directly into a good sized living room and then off the living room is the kitchen.

This picture was actually taken from the laundry area, not the living room.

The doorway to the living room is to the right of the fridge.

There is also a small pantry to the right of the fridge.
The window over the sink overlooks our big, flat backyard...which I also forgot to take a picture of. I will get it too. It is my favorite part of the house.

It is an eat-in kitchen. Here is the dining area. (That wallpaper is already gone!)

Off the living room is also a hallway to the bedrooms and bathrooms. Here is the hall. There is a full bathroom on the left side of the hall, but you can't see the door in this picture. The next door on the left is a linen closet, then our bedroom. The door straight ahead is Harrison's room and then on the right is our extra bedroom which will be an office.

This is the full bathroom in the hallway. We like that the vanity is in one part and then there is a door separating the toliet and tub/shower.

This is one of the walls in our bedroom. With all the bedrooms being white and having no furniture, there isn't really a way to take a good picture of the rooms. Our room has tray ceilings.

We have a full bathroom in our bedroom as well. The vanity is in our room and the toliet and tub/shower door is to the right.

I didn't take a picture of the other 2 rooms because you couldn't really tell anything about them. But, both bedrooms have the previous kid's names stenciled on the door...something fun to remove.

What do you think? I will be posting this week about our plans for each room...we have lots!

Sunday, May 8, 2011


Sorry I've been missing lately. First we were doing a lot of this:

Then, we did some of this:

Then, we did more of the first thing and then tornadoes hit our area and we didn't have power or work. Then, we painted and I was a very bad blogger and didn't take any pictures. And now....We're at the beach!

"Before" house tour will be posted tomorrow and then I have a bunch of changes to show you already. It is already looking so much better!