There’s a vicious cycle going on. We blog about something and then we live with it. And while we do, we tackle other stuff and blog about that. Lather, rinse, repeat. So we’re not always good about keeping you posted on those older things that we’ve already talked about since we’re so busy gabbing about new stuff. Which probably explains why we get asked for updates on a handful of things nearly every day. In other words: it’s about darn time we followed up. So here’s a nice juicy post full of a bunch of those updates for everyone.
Cloth diapers: Believe it or not, we’re still using the very same original 12 cloth diapers that we got back in 2010 before Clara was born. We haven’t bought any more, replaced any, or bought liners. And two years later they’re still working really well for us. We do put Clara in a disposable overnight (she finally started wetting through the cloth – something we heard might happen for a while, and finally did), but one a day is only seven a week, so it’s not bad at all. As for their shape, they’re still holding up really well. We do have a busted snap here or there (we’ve lost one snap on two of the twelve diapers, but it doesn’t keep them from staying on since there are multiple snaps on each side to hold them). Their color and fabric is in great condition and they look pretty close to new, actually.
Here’s the inside of them (these pics were taken yesterday):
We’re thrilled that we haven’t had to buy any more diapers for our stash or add extra liners (they’re all-in-ones, read more on them here) and they really do seem to be one size fits all since they’re still working for us even with Clara being about 300% bigger than she was at birth. So that’s the update on the cloth diaper front. Here’s the original post all about cloth diapering (which has tons of info in the post and the comment section) along with a one-year-in update post on the subject.
Karl The Sectional: Love him. Still looks the same and feels just as comfy after over a year of kid/dog abuse. The dark slipcovers (we went with Dark Sivik Gray, which is almost like denim and super durable) hide almost everything. So much that we haven’t had to wash them much, but when we do we use our own washer and dryer at home (ya don’t need an industrial one or anything) and they go back on and look great. I think different Karl fabrics have different rules – the Dark Sivik Gray fabric says “machine wash” but other fabric choices might be “dry clean only.” Our one minor complaint would be that the hold-it-in-place velcro to keep the chaise cushion from slipping out and hanging over the chaise like an overbite doesn’t catch correctly (it doesn’t seem to line up) so that cushion migrates out slowly over time. So every few weeks I notice and shove it back into the sofa. No biggie. Probably could just add a strip of velcro on the back that lines up to solve it once and for all. Here’s the original post about getting Karl.
Ed The Bed: He’s the other man in our life from Ikea (Swedish product names like Karlstad and Edland made for some pretty easy nicknames) and we’ve been very happy with him. Still sturdy and comfortable, so when we collapse into bed at 1am after some DIY extravaganza (gotta get stuff done while the kiddo sleeps) we’re happy to be there. Here’s the original post about getting Ed.
ORB’ed hardware: This is something a bunch of you guys have wanted an update on, so here it is, complete with pics. Stuff still looks mint. Admittedly we don’t use the front door (or the doorknocker) very frequently, but here are some shots that I took yesterday of them:
On the other hand, we open the sunroom slider and the door that leads outside at least ten times a day to let Burger in and out and they’re also still doing great. So we would definitely recommend this method (sanding them with something very high grit is going to be our approach when we tackle the interior knobs someday) and we’ll keep you posted if they suddenly start giving us trouble.
Kitchen lab stools: We have only had these bad boys a few months, but we sit on them numerous times a day and usually eat dinner on them, and for $33 a chair, they couldn’t be better. Would I want to lounge in them for six hours while watching The Titanic on repeat? No. Are they comfy for proofreading book layouts, eating dinner, writing cards, paying bills, laptop usage or any other thirty-minute-to-an-hour-long activity? Absolutely. I would warn you that to get them without the back might seriously compromise the comfort-factor, since the awesome flexing back seems to be one of the things that makes them so comfy. Here’s a link to the original post about finding our kitchen stools.
Chair in Clara’s room: I probably logged five hours a week of nursing Clara for fourteen whole months in this chair, along with John and I sitting down to read Clara the occasional story (which still occurs) – so for our family, this chair has been great. That’s not to say that some of my very best friends don’t swear by a cushy rocking/swivel chair, but perhaps from getting used to nursing everywhere (in a parked car at Target? Check.) it’s actually one of the more cozy places. The rounded shape supported my arms in a nice way (an armless slipper chair might be a nursing challenge if you’re completely zonked and want somewhere to rest your arms) and we always keep an ottoman or pouf nearby for putting the ol’ feet up. Totally worked for me. Here’s a link to the original chair-finding post and the nursery reveal post about our $20 thrift store chair.
White cabinets: Sometimes people ask if white cabinets get dirty or are hard to keep clean, and perhaps we’re just used to them (we had them in our first house’s kitchen for over four years before moving here) but we always think they look clean by nature (after all, they’re bright white). And since cabinet paint is completely scrubbable, they definitely don’t seem high maintenance to us. It’s not like white fabric (which can be stained) since cabinet paint like the alkyd stuff we used is slick, durable, and can be cleaned with a wet rag, sponge, or paper towel (you know, because spaghetti sauce happens).
We probably wipe away some random cabinet splatter once or twice a week for a total of sixty seconds spent cleaning them. As for dusting them, we have yet to do this since painting them in December, and they still don’t have any dust collecting around the inset rectangle part, perhaps because it’s pretty shallow and angled as opposed to shelf-like (it did collect there in our old kitchen with shaker cabinets, so once every month or so I’d run a microfiber cloth over them – no biggie). Here’s a link to the original cabinet-painting post with more info about the process/result in the post and the comment section for ya.
White Corian: We’re much happier with our Corian (in Glacier White) than we feared we might be. We worried it would be a pain to keep clean and although we read that it was nonporous, we worried that something would somehow seep into it and stain. But so far, we have had zero staining issues (even with things like strawberry juice and spaghetti sauce), zero scratches (we hear white Corian is the best about not getting scratched up), and they’re easy to keep clean. We always wiped down our old counters every night before bed anyway, and they were veiny granite so nothing showed – which was a problem! We’d find a glob of peanut butter from three nights ago on the counter that we somehow missed. So gross! It’s nice to see everything and just swipe it all down and wake up to a sparkly white room.
The one thing we’ve heard is that you can crack Corian by setting a searing hot pan down on it, but in our last house even with granite we used trivets, so that’s just part of our routine anyway. But the best thing about them has been the zero seams thing. In our first kitchen crumbs would build up or get caught in the seams, but without them our entire counter with our undermount sink is truly seamless, so it’s so nice to sweep things into the sink without hitting any little divots where those seams are. When we ordered our Corian we didn’t even know it was a seamless material, so that was a total unexpected bonus. Here’s a link to our original post about choosing Corian and a post about getting it installed, both with tons of info in the post and the comment section for ya.
Open shelves: Love is a conservative adjective for how we feel about them. Sometimes I want to kiss them. Open mouthed. They’re definitely not for everyone, but we use the things on them so frequently that they don’t have time to get dusty. And you should see me unload the dishwasher or set the table, it takes two seconds. It’s also a lot easier to do things like pour a bowl of cereal with a toddler on my hip. Seriously, we’re so sold we’re a little sad that we didn’t work open shelves into our first house’s kitchen – we were totally missing out. Here’s a link to a post about choosing open shelves and a post about building them and loading them up.
HP Photosmart C4780: Truth be told, I tossed this guy in here because it felt like we were giving too many glowing reviews. So I racked my brain to think of something we don’t like. Hah. And it’s this poor guy. He just can’t be trusted to wirelessly print something (sometimes it inexplicably shoots out one page of something and then takes ten minutes to print the second page or never even prints it at all). It’s just a bit too quirky for our tastes, but we did have an Epson that we loved a few years ago (it didn’t print wirelessly, so we later upgraded to this one). We’ll probably go back to that brand and see how their wireless capabilities are someday when we get mad enough to want to throw this guy out the window (sometimes we’re thisclose).
Nikon D3000: Other than still learning how to use it, which is to be expected (we’re faaaar from pro photographers) we’ve been really happy with our camera. We saved our pennies for a while before taking the plunge into DSLR territory, but with a baby on the way (Clara) we thought it was time to upgrade from our little point and shoot. We’re so glad we did, because we definitely get better pics of our family and better photos for the blog. Our only gripe used to be that they didn’t make a cheap nifty fifty (an inexpensive 50mm lens) for this type of Nikon (it only worked with D90s and others closer to that model) but they came out with this one about a year ago and we got it (we don’t typically use it for any blog pics since it’s not as wide of an angle lens as the stock one that came with the camera, which is better suited for interiors). But it’s great for a moving kid or dog in low light, so we like it for Clara/Burger pics and general family stuff (like her interesting hair fashions). Here’s a post about getting our new camera with lots of info in the post and the comment section for ya.
So there you have it. Hope that was helpful. What do you have in your house that’s been surprisingly awesome? Or surprisingly disappointing? Are there any brands you always love or products you wish were different? It’s so great to hear about stuff that you guys like, and learn from your don’t-get-this warnings.
Psst- In the mistakes-we’ve-made/what we’ve tweaked vein, check out this post, this post, and this post. We definitely make our fair share of mistakes! We just try to keep learning as we go, and allowing our house to evolve over time.
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