Archive for December, 2011
So yeah… it’s suddenly December? Guess that means it’s time to take a moment to look back on all that we’ve done in the past month at a glance (and gather all the links in one handy place for ya). And of course we tossed in some never-before-seen stuff to keep things spicy. This month we were all over the place as usual, from doing some exterior, nursery, office, ornament, and place-setting stuff to a bunch of kitchen things. So let’s take a walk down memory lane, with yearbook-esque superlatives (you know, just for giggles).
Oddest Couple: Little ol’ Sherry and this tall built-in that we made to give our fridge a more finished look in the new kitchen. It’ll look even more finish once we get around to adding doors and painting it…
Cutest Couple: Me and the giant 7 (actually an L from a Dollar Tree sign) that a reader picked up for us in Maryland after we lamented leaving it behind. Best $25 we ever spent. Thanks again Lesley!
Most Shocking: The fact that our grass looked this green (and leaf free) just one month ago when we did a little mum-ification to our mailbox area. Let’s just say everything is looking a lot more “wintery” (aka: faded and brown) these days.
Handiest: The newest member of Sherry’s ceramic animal collection (Henrietta is rocking eight hands, which makes her the envy of all DIYers).
Most Pin-able: The results of our Pinterest Challenge, Fall Edition. We’re not talking about the 38 DIY ornaments that we made, but rather the awesome 800+ projects that folks linked to at the bottom of the post. Wow.
Easiest: Painting a few test swatches on our front porch… and then not doing anything else about them all month (we fear that it’s now getting too cold at night to paint until spring). Oops. At least we picked a color.
Strangest: Pictures from posts like this one about choosing a contractor. It’s so weird to see the opening between the kitchen and the dining room as just an idea outlined in green painters tape. Now that it’s done, we can hardly remember the room without it.
Creepiest: My Dexter impersonation whilst (yep, I just whilst-ed y’all) prepping our house for wall demo.
Awesomest (it’s a word, okay): This.
More Awesomest: This.
Less Than Awesome: This little hiccup in drywalling the doorway. Don’t worry, it worked out okay in the end.
Okay, Now We’re Back On The Awesome Train: Installing trim around the doorway so it really started to look finished.
Most Likely To Die Happy: Me, since I accomplished a fair amount on my high school “Things to Do Before I’m 30″ list before turning 30 last month. You know… important things like living to see a Real World: Washington DC.
Most Likely To Say “Thanks”: Anyone who printed & shared our free Thanksgiving card download, which included one to fill out yourself and one to pass along blank (so the recipient could pay it forward).
Most Mischievous: Burger, aka our resident baguette robber (as seen in our lil Thanksgiving greeting).
Most Likely To Be Misread… With Disgusting Results: Our post title “We’re Now Officially Sinkless” which was apparently seen as “We’re Now Officially Skinless” by many. Shudder. Let’s hope that never gets blogged about (or happens). Ever.
“It’s The Little Things” Award: Small touches to the kitchen, like filling some gaps next to the stove and putting a panel on the back of the peninsula, so that our counters could be accurately templated.
Least Accurate: Clara, at least when it comes to measuring for counters. Thank goodness the real professional showed up from the fabrication company to make sure our counters will fit.
Most Musical: Our ceramic pig speaker from West Elm (just one of the random things that we covered in a roundup of four little finds).
The “Here We Go Again” Award: Just when things were starting to get put back together in the kitchen, they came back apart as we removed our upper cabinets in preparation for our new counters (which are hopefully arriving sometime next week!).
Class Crybaby: This (sarcastic) tear-jerker of a video bidding farewell to the tile we had to demo, along with the plywood walls behind it.
Most Awkward People In A Checkout Line: Us, while buying a giant piece of throwback wood paneling. Let’s just say people looked at us as if we were committing some sort of decorating sin. But we had to install that new wood paneling to match some missing pieces where our tile and cabinets used to be (and can’t wait to paint it to match the rest of the room). Whatever it takes to inch closer to a finished kitchen…
Most Demonstrative: Burger and his superb posing skills in this play-by-play of how our book deal came to be and the progress that we’ve made on it so far.
The Daddy’s Girl Award: Doesn’t go to Clara, I guess. This post about some updates to our nursery frame collage turned into an overwhelming consensus that Clara looks like Sherry (which is funny because both of our families are on The John Train). It’s music to my ears since I love the idea of a mini Sherry. And I don’t think I’d make the prettiest lady…
The Momma’s Girl Award: Continuing the theme of being a clone of Sherry, Clara LOVES pickles (which I detest). In fact, on a recent dinner out she devoured an ENTIRE PICKLE. Like, not just a spear – a whole, oblong oversized uncut pickle. Sherry was seriously impressed. And I (predictably) was disgusted.
Woo-wee, so that’s what November looked like around here? What about in your neck of the woods. Did you guys accomplish any major projects or have an especially awesome holiday? We’re hoping to enjoy more of both in December. Happy (almost) holidays everyone!
Lately lots of the submissions that we’ve been getting are kitchen related, and you know we’re in the kitchen mindset these days… so we’re happy to share. Jasmine & Sam’s remodel wooed us with their use of white on white with tons of texture and a sleek clean feeling. And when it comes to function, we’re really impressed by how the addition of more upper cabinets and details like molding and trim elevated (both literally and figuratively) the entire room. Here’s Jasmine and Sam’s email:
Hey guys! My family and I just had our one year anniversary in our new house and I thought to send you some pics of our new kitchen. We actually did almost all of the projects in our house makeover on our own. Luckily, we are a handy pair.
The kitchen cabinets were maple, in a shaker style. We ordered a second set of cabinets from a local company (Summerhill Kitchens) for the top row to match the bottom row and sent all the doors to an automotive painter friend of ours who sprayed them in Benjamin Moore’s Simply White. I painted the gables, and stretchers, and anything else that was nailed down with a foam roller. The big splurge was new appliances – all Vikings. Love them. A Lot. Not Sam’s favourite things to install, but totally worth it (we saved money by having him install them all).
The backsplash is a white beveled subway tile. They were a great bargain (around 60 cents each) from here. The floor was a combination of birch hardwood and the ugliest shag you’ve ever seen. Not only was it ugly, it really broke the space up. After ripping it all out, we laid an engineered walnut floating floor on top throughout the whole main floor. We bought it from an auction that sells flooring a few times per year, so the flooring ended up being an unbelievable $1.50/sq ft (including underlay). Oh and the stools are from Crate & Barrel.
The wall colour is Antique White and the cabinets and trim are Simply White by Benjamin Moore matched to Home Depot’s Behr Paint & Primer in One paint. There’s a post in the middle of the kitchen that we really really wanted to remove, but apparently since it holds up the entire house, they told me it had to stay. So we tarted it up with moulding and called it a day. We’re used to it, but I still wish it was gone. Anyways, have fun with your kitchen renos, catch ya later! – Jasmine and Sam
Anyone else think Jasmine and Sam need to start a blog so we can learn more about their renovations? They look like quite the stylish duo. And I for one, love that coffee table above. Here’s hoping they can drop in and answer any comment questions that you guys have here. And in the meantime, let’s play the what’s-your-favorite-part-game. I’m digging the extra cabinetry they added along with those cool stools. And Sherry’s drooling over those shiiiiny counters and that gleaming backsplash.
Psst- We (finally) shared our road-tripping Thanksgiving adventures with friends, family, and food over on Young House Life. Find those deets here.
Psssst – We just put our dining table and six chairs from our first house on Craigslist (it’s from Target, is in great condition, and is about four years old). More deets here.
Dude, my dad is an artist. I mean not by trade (he’s a super-genius math teacher), but both he and my mother sketched and drew for fun during my childhood (in turn art was my favorite subject in school and off I went to get a bachelor of fine arts in NYC). I remember being in complete awe about how my mom drew horses and ladies while I loved how my dad drew all sorts of abstract shapes that filled a page with lines and dots and squares. Sort of like this.
So about a week ago I was standing in the frame hallway thinking about my dad and his awesome drawings and realized that I needed one to frame in honor of him and his super cool art skillz that inspired me so much as a kid. So I called him up (you can see an old picture of him here) and begged him to photocopy one of them and send me the copy in a big rigid “do not bend” envelope. But he did me one better. He sent me the original (!) of what he calls his “best drawing ever” – a super sweet seventies-tastic owl that he sketched in 1972 (when I was negative ten years old).
First of all, I love that dad named him “Owlie” since I’m no stranger to naming my ceramic animals (like this gal). I also love that if you look closely you’ll see that the entire owl is made up of repeating shapes and patterns (totally a signature thing that my dad did in nearly all of his sketches). And everything from the repeated hexagons to the soft layered colors that feel so “authentic seventies” just makes me smile. I know owls are all the rage these days, but I love that my father sketched this guy 39 years ago! Although maybe owls were hot commodities then too. Haha. Everything old is new again.
Anyway, true to my obnoxiously excitable personality, the receipt of this amazing guy got me ridiculously hyper. Stupid-giddy even. I couldn’t bring myself to frame the original (way too precious) so I decided to scan it so I could mail the original right back to dad where it belonged. And since my father had mentioned that he wished he hadn’t cut it down and matted it on purple paper decades ago, I took the opportunity to “digitally restore” his sketch to its original glory by putting it on a while background just as it had originally appeared. I also moved the little signature and date together for the new not-cut-down arrangement while I was at it:
Then I printed it out and popped it into a hallway gallery frame that had something less exciting (a picture of our wedding table, but we already have a few other more beloved wedding pics on the wall so… it got dethroned by Owlie).
Total spent: $0.
I think it makes the entire wall.
And sure enough, when we recently had some people over they gravitated to it and I got to proudly tell them that my father drew it in 1972! Woo to the hoo. Get it? Owl? Hoo? See what I did there?
Anyway, I love me some dad-made owl art. And as many of you know, I also love me some crocheted owl hattage on the bean (she calls this her “hoo hat”). Can my child really be into bad puns at the ripe old age of a year and a half?
With us parents… I think so. Oh and in case you haven’t seen her singing Adele, here’s that link for ya.
Have you guys framed anything that your friends or relatives have drawn? Did you only feel right keeping a copy of it? For some reason the original just feels like it belongs at dad’s house taped up next to his desk like it always has been (I also sent him a “digitally restored” printout, in case he wants one of those). What’s with kids wanting their parents to keep their houses exactly the same for sentimental reasons, anyway?
Psst- We announced this weeks three giveaway winners! Click here to see if you’re one of them.