Monday, February 28, 2011

I should have taken pictures for this "tutorial"

It looks like I should have taken pictures of the headboard making process - that would have made a "tutorial" much easier!  Also... I can't find the inspiration picture which is sad because it was so beautiful!  I think it was from BHG, but the link doesn't seem to be working.  Here's a picture as a reminder:

Here's my best attempt to explain:

1)  We purchased to 36" plain doors from Lowes.  They were $26 each with no holes drilled or anything.
2)  We got little straight brackets to attach them to one another from the backside.
3)  We filled the seam down the middle with wood putty and sanded (and repeated).  We probably could have sanded a bit more, but you don't really notice.
4)  I'm the planner/measurer, so I laid out the pattern that I wanted with the molding.  We got one piece of crown molding for the top, and two pieces to make up the "panels".  If we were to do it again, I'd have had the panels go further down as you can see the end of the one on the left a little bit.
5)  We cut the molding and attached it using Gorilla glue and finishing nails.  The nails were just to hold the molding down flat while the glue dried - that stuff is STRONG!
6) We caulked and sanded the nail holes.
7)  Painted, painted, painted.  It took 3 coats - yuck!
8)  We got the sconces from good ole IKEA.  Once I measured and marked for them, Jim had to drill pretty big holes to get the plugs through.  Be sure to get ones that have the pull cord and NOT the switch on the electrical cord if you plan to run the cord behind the headboard.  We knew we didn't want our cords to run down the front so this was important!
9)  Attach the sconces.

10)  Time to hang!  We found really great hanging hardware at Lowes, but of course I can't find it listed on their website.  They were with the picture hanging supplies.  They come in two pieces, each about 6" long.  One piece includes a level (how handy is that???).  You attach one piece to the wall and the other to the back of the headboard.  They are angled so that when you slide the headboard (or whatever you're hanging) down, the pieces slip right together.  I really wish I'd taken a picture because it's tough to describe, but a great invention.  Each one is supposed to hold 75 lbs, but we got two because we didn't want all of the weight of such a wide piece to be right in the middle (and on the seam).

This is one of my favorite things we've built together (probably second only to the pergola).  It was pretty inexpensive, super fast, has a huge impact on the room, and I LOVE not having to get up to turn off the lights!

Friday, February 25, 2011


I'd say we had a successful little break (with an extra snow day thrown in)!

We had one last ultrasound to check my placenta. While we were there we asked the (SUPER nice) tech to double check to be sure No. 2 IS a girl. She still is, so I can actually finish up the nursery now and I finally cut the tags off all of the clothes we've bought and washed/put them away. We've never had a 3D ultrasound before, and she offered to get a couple of pictures for us. Here No. 2 is covering her nose with her hand:

Here is her face without her hand: (I haven't seen a lot of these, but those cheeks look HUGE) I actually asked the tech if she looked freakishly big. I was assured she looks normal. Wednesday I went in for my weekly check and he said that all of my signs "bode well for someone who isn't going to make it to my due date." We'll see, with Stella, I KNEW she wasn't going to come early. Even 2 days before my due date I wasn't thinking about going into labor. I haven't felt that way this time and now that he's said that I'm thinking it might be time to start the final preps like packing a bag and getting the carseat base in the car. Not that I think it's going to happen today or anything like that, but it would be good to have it all done.

We also got some of the projects done around the house. We made ourselves a headboard! We haven't had an actually headboard for years, and I've been wanting one. Someday we'll buy all new bedroom furniture for grown-ups, but there are so many other things higher on our priority list right now. Though I love our bedroom, it just hasn't felt like we've done anything with it other than paint and move in. Just a few weeks ago we hung a picture frame system.

Here's a picture (terrible quality because I had to get it off of Zillow) of our last bedroom. That quilt was ONLY for staging - we HATED it! We didn't have a headboard then either, but I really liked having the lights above the bed. It was so nice not to have to get up to turn the lights out if someone was reading or something. We didn't like the look for our new room though so the picture and lights were donated.
I saw a picture of a headboard online made out of doors that had sconces built in - I LOVED it and talked my reluctant husband into helping. We're both thrilled with how it turned out. It actually makes the room seem a bit smaller, but adds a ton to the room! So... here it is:

We went to bed early last night just so I could lay there and knit and enjoy the new lights!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Always busy!

I ALWAYS have projects on my mind. They might be for the house, the girl, or myself, but there is always a mental list. I say I'm tired, and then in the next breathe list all of the things I want to get done. Jim is typically less than thrilled because it often means that he's going to have to help me. He kind of tries to resist and lets me know he doesn't really want to, but I'm so fortunate that he's a great sport and always helps. Yesterday, we drove to Lowes and bought materials to make a headboard. We haven't had one in years, and with everything else going on right now it's probably terrible timing, but we did it.

So now, we have a 3 day vacation from school, and on top of 3 Dr appointments, gymnastics, and trips to 4 different stores for returns/last minute things (on top of normal things like the grocery store, house cleaning, etc) our to-do list consists of:

* make a headboard

* oil the counters

* grout tile

* put together the bassinette

* pillows for the nursery

Speaking of nursery, it's been pointed out that a few people are waiting for some new pictures. It's going to have to wait a bit. We still have some stuff to finish up (pillows, mirror, pictures, etc) and currently it's being used as the headboard construction area.

I can say that one thing I've been happy to cross off the list is a hat for No. 2. I never seem to have much time to knit anymore and I miss it! I got one hat done (which I have NO idea if it will fit a newborn), another on the needles, yarn for a third, and a throw for the bed in the nursery also on the needles. It's been so relaxing to get back into that! Here's the first (no pink!):

This is up next - I think you have to be on ravelry to view it, and the third will be a creamy textured yarn hat with earflaps and ties!

Yesterday Stell was invited to a princess party by her cousin. It was awesome and deserves a post of its own!

I guess after seeing that list I should get off the computer and get to work!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Monday, February 7, 2011

Catching up

I still haven't posted about the work we did on the house over Christmas vacation! (In fact, I still haven't posted pictures of the house along with what my plans are) We'll start with flooring since that was the first of our two major projects over break.

We had already replaced the carpet in the front room with new carpet. All of the upstairs is wood and tile, we were planning to do laminate (for now) downstairs, and there is tile. Jim wanted to do laminate in the front room also, but I really wanted one room to have carpet for wrestling, laying on the floor watching movies, forts, etc. Previously, the back of the first floor had terrible berber in the family room and dining room (I cannot STAND carpet in a dining room!!!). It also had awful vinyl in the kitchen. So, when we got home from school Friday afternoon we immediately began tearing out the carpet in the dining room and worked our way through the kitchen and family room. The kitchen was the worst because we (Jim) also had to remove the particle board under the vinyl. What a job! So... here are the durings and afters! I can't believe the difference it made in the way I feel about this old house!
The terrible carpet that was in the dining room and family room. (And the awful light that I talked Jim into changing for me)
Stella loves to help with any and all projects! Demo day was a good one for her.
Kitchen demo day was by far the most labor intensive. We had to rip out all of the underlayment so that the floors would be even, and there was some water damage in one spot in the kitchen. SO worth it! You can see how ugly the vinyl is here too.
Finishing up the kitchen demo - Stella did NOT like the sound of the hammer on the pry bar.
It was a bit tougher for her to help with laying the floor though she wanted to terribly. She loved it so much she wanted to run around the big empty dining room in circles. It was tough to get her to stay off of it and not to pop any of the pieces out while we were working.
I can't believe that we still haven't gotten a better "after" picture. At least here you can get an idea of how much better it flows from the kitchen to the dining room. I love the look of the dark "wood" with the white cabinets.
Stella hanging out and enjoying the new floors!

It's pretty surprising how well Jim and I work together. Not everyone can do things like this together - we're lucky. Our strengths also compliment one another very well. One thing that we learned from doing this project: when we redo the kitchen for "real" we won't be doing laminate floors. They look great when they're clean, but they aren't nearly as tough as our slate tile was in the old house and it looks dirty SO quickly. I'm 98% sure that when we do the major renovation we'll go with slate again (and probably do it ourselves again)!

I still need to put together a post on the other kitchen improvements. I'll try to get some better after pictures of the floors too!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

We're getting there little pineapple!

No. 2 is the size of a pineapple today! So, we've had a bit of progress and I thought I'd do a quick little update.

1) The room is painted. It's a whole lot tougher to paint with a 3 year old wanting to help. SO sweet! I picked the room color and when we were almost done I told Jim it kind of reminded me of the 50's or 60's. He said, "Yeah, a hospital in the 50's or 60's. You could call this an 'asylum' instead of nursery." At the end of the night when it was dark the paint was dry and all we had in the room was a little white twin sized bed right in the middle. Um... it was CREEPY! It looked just like a room in a mental hospital in a horror movie! :( We're not repainting, but hoping that the addition of more color and furniture will tone it down. It's not the turquoise color that either of us had in mind, but I think we'll like it when it's all done.

2) I only gained 0.4 pounds since the last time I went to the Dr (3 weeks) YAY! He did say to me, "Don't expect this baby to be as tiny as Stella." So now of course I'm worried that labor won't be as crazy easy as hers either. Then my mind starts going crazy... we always talk about how different they'll probably be. Will it start with labor and then move into crying and not being a good sleeper? Ugh! Ah well, it doesn't matter we can't wait to hold her!

3) Stella is baby crazy! She wants to shop for baby, sing to her, etc. She's constantly asking, "Can I teach my baby to _______?" I simply cannot wait to see the two of them together!

4) We've resorted to bribery to get Stella to stay in her own bed through the night. I was so exhausted last week that I promised her a toy if she didn't get up during the night. She's been wanting Squinkies (I had no idea what they were before she showed me) for a while and they are tiny, come in a pack of 16 and are less than $1 each so I caved. Now we have them in a bowl and whenever she sleeps through the night she gets to pick one. It may be wrong, but I really don't care. At this point I'd try anything to get her sleeping through the night before this baby is born!

5) Stella is also a bit fragile. The past few mornings she hasn't wanted to go to Sheri's, which is so unusual. She just wants to stay home with Mama. She was so sad that I wasn't going to be taking her to gym and then sobbed when she found out that gym was cancelled yesterday! She even asked if I could just stay with her at Sheri's! Talk about breaking my heart! I know she loves it there and has a whole lot more fun than she would at home with me, but it still hurts. What a nice long spring and summer it will be with my two darling girls!

I go back to the Dr in 2 weeks and then once a week after that. THAT'S how you know when you're close - once a week trips to the Dr.!!!