Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Almost there!

I cannot believe how fast time is flying now, or busy I have been.

But in the past two(?) weeks, I have pretty much redone and switched around the three bedrooms in our house to make room for our (VERY) soon-to-be baby!

The room Ethan used to use is now the "grownup" bedroom. It is the room with the attic access, so I wanted to make sure we ended up in there:

mom & dad - new room

I had painted it a shocking blue for him when we moved in, but I thought John and I might benefit from something a little more soothing, so I mixed up a ton of paints I found in the basement and ended up with a lovely green.

mom & dad closet

All I did was toss our stuff in there for now -- some of it quite literally -- and I'll deal with putting it all away as soon as the kids' rooms are totally in order.

The boys moved into the former adult bedroom. The room was very bright and cheery for us, but just a cream color, and I wanted to do something extra special for the boys (especially since we were making them share a room after always having slept in their own spaces).

So I had them pick out some paint colors,

we picked out the colors for the boys' stripey walls today

And with a little masking tape and some careful rolling, the boring side walls of the room were transformed into personalized Happy Walls. :)

Noah's side:

noah's side

and Ethan's side:

ethan's side

I am so pleased with how it turned out (not too shabby for only a few hours of work in one evening!) and the boys LOVE their new space. Sleeping has been blissfully uninterrupted and they are already totally adjusted to the new arrangements.

Once their room was in at least partial working order, I started in on Lydia's room (formerly Noah's room).

I knew I wanted yellow, but I had been agonizing over shades for about a million years. After I found two I liked the best (both very different, but with qualities I admired for various reasons), I bought two of those little sample jars of paint and put two swatches on the wall, which stayed on there for another million years while I scrutinized both of them in every kind of natural and artificial light possible.

Why all the fuss over a silly shade of yellow? Well, painting with yellow can be positively disastrous.

See, I put a gorgeous yellow in the kitchen in the apartment John and I lived in around the time we got married (incidentally, that is my wedding bouquet in front of the wall in this picture):

wedding bouquet

Bold and rich, not too shocking, just warm and lovely. So when we moved to the house in Scranton a few years later, I couldn't wait to have a perfect yellow kitchen again!

I failed.

ethan takes pictures

It doesn't show in this picture, but the shade I picked was practically NEON in any kind of bright light, especially artificial -- you know, nighttime lighting when you need a day-glo nightmare to help you unwind for bedtime...

So I had indeed achieved my yellow kitchen again, but with none of the pesky tastefulness of the former kitchen. I eventually grew to like it, but would never ever ever ever have picked that shade again for any wall, no matter what, ever.

You can understand my fear of commitment here, yeah?

To wrap up a ridiculously long story, I stared at those swatches for weeks, memorized what I liked best about both of them and finally took the plunge Sunday.

By Monday, I was two coats of primer and one coat of paint in on Lydia's walls:

lydia's room in progress

Late Monday night, starting in on the second coat (just a gratuitous belly shot, really):

side view, painting Lydia's room

And as of yesterday afternoon:



tiny dresser makes a perfect changing table

What a PERFECT yellow!!! It is exactly what I was hoping for and I am beyond thrilled with the way the whole room is coming out. The color is soothing and buttery in all light, and is like heaven when the sun sets and shines through the slats of the blinds in the evening.

I have a lot of things I love in there, including my childhood dressers which I refinished when we were expecting Ethan, and the brand new crib and glider from my parents, but one of my favorite special touches is this switchplate that my parents saved from when I was little:

was mine when I was little :)

I like that it is the last thing I see as I leave the room.

I still have a lot of closet rearranging to do and laundry out the wazoo, but I have three weeks left to get that done and I think I can do it, unless someone decides on an early arrival. :)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

A Doozy of a Project

 Not one to buck my own personal trends (in this case, of starting impossible projects while in the third trimester of a pregnancy), I have started the process of finishing our attic.

To begin, I got to knock through a wall, which has been a pet dream of mine for a million years.

This is an intentionally sloppy Photoshop job, but I had forgotten to take a picture of the closet with the attic access before I started knocking through afore mentioned wall. The framed area on the ceiling was a roughly 2x2' hole you hoisted yourself up through:


Woo! Demolishing stuff is fun. It turned out to be only very old drywall with no studs, so I basically punched around the edges with a claw hammer and removed the wall pieces in big chunks. Less fun that way, but also less dust.


After opening that up, I had three rafters to cut through and remove. I used the wood I cut away (and a few other scraps) to make a ladder of sorts for now. When everything is done upstairs, I'll be building steps in of course.


So these next two shots are what it looked like up there when I started -- huge piles of loose insulation and a bunch of 2x8' sheets of plywood just tossed all over (did I mention there was no floor up there?). That flex hose is from the bathroom vent. It will soon be vented outside.


Looking toward the other side, before:


After a few good hours of work on Saturday, I had gathered and organized the insulation by size, distributed the plywood across the floor for ease of walking, and started tacking up some of the insulation.


After a few hours up there on Sunday, I made amazing progress on the ceiling!


Floor boards were again laid out in a way that enabled me to actually walk across a solid surface.


And I only had three more sections to fill on each side:


One of two small remaining piles of insulation:


The other small pile of insulation. Soon to be all used up!


Monday, I was lucky enough to get to run up there again as soon as John got home from work, and you know what?


All the insulation is UP! I have more coming from my dad for the side wall, but every single piece that was covering the "floor" is now up and out of the way.

I have a ton of work to do before we can use the space, but I'm hoping to get as much done as possible before the baby gets here. I'm sure there will be updates, but I'll try to post about prettier things in between. ;)