Archive for December, 2011

Our Favorite Projects of 2011


Posted by Rebecca, December 29th, 2011

2011 is over already, can you believe it? Since this year was our first full year of blogging (and living in the house), we figured we’d jump on the end of year list bandwagon! So without further adieu, here is a list of our top 5 favorite projects that we completed around the house this year…

5. Powder Room Paint Job

Though painting is nothing all that special, we took a flying leap out of our comfort zones with this near-black paint choice. I think it paid off πŸ™‚

4. Pencil Eraser Art

This was another project that didn’t take me long, but had a big impact. I still love looking at this thing and I’m thinking of ways to use some pencil eraser art in the future.

3. Entryway Chair Rail

This was our first molding adventure and we got a serious high off of conquering those funny angles. Therefore, we loved it this year.

2. Stamped Concrete Patio

While we did not attempt this one ourselves, we definitely did not expect to have an awesome patio this year. It’s a reader favorite so our wood plank stamped patio gets the runner up position on our 2011 list!

1. Office stripes

Measure once, measure twice, okay measure 5 times then level, remeasure… 18 hours later peel off tape and have clean stripes! The amount of blood, sweat and tears that went into taping this room and the almost perfect finished product (we needed a few touch ups) make this our favorite project of 2011. Plus looking at the stripes through our french doors everyday makes it even better!

Honorable Mention:

The Baby.

Look at the little chin chin! I couldn’t resist the baby bomb πŸ™‚

Hopefully 2012 will bring even bigger and better projects. We’re really surprised at how many things we’ve checked off our to-do list this year. We have a bunch of things to get started on for 2012 ASAP! What should we tackle first?!

The Non-Existent Christmas

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Posted by Rebecca, December 27th, 2011

Aaand we’re back! We had a rough Christmas around here. I wrote a very lengthy post about our Christmas, or lack thereof, over at Macky & Co since I felt the post was more appropriate for that blog. But I figured I should fill all of you guys in on what’s been going on around here and how Macky is doing, so you can read aaaall about it by clicking here!

Needless to say, we never finished our Christmas prep around the house. We never decorated outside. I didn’t get around to setting the dining room table. We never decorated the mantel or even hung stockings. It was one of those “sometimes life gets in the way” type of years and it seems like life was getting in the way a lot. Not only did I just finish school on Tuesday, but we ended up having a Macky emergency on Friday.

We’re completey drained here and we’re trying to take a few days to catch our breath. I originally planned to use this week to refocus on the blog, but I feel so exhausted that I doubt I will get as much done as I wanted. But! We did begin our crib shopping today, so I’ll have a post about that experience soon πŸ™‚

For now, I’m in complete awe of my Macky Noodle and I just want to squeeze him so tight.

This guy scared the living shiznit out of us this weekend and I never thought in a million years that I’d spend Christmas without him. But he’s back and all is well! Except maybe those few gray hairs Mike swears he sprung…

A Christmas Bathroom


Posted by Rebecca, December 21st, 2011

Remember back when we painted our powder room? Well, we pretty much left it with our last update of just hanging a mirror and some shelves. Literally days after we painted, morning sickness kicked in and I lost all motivation to finish the room (we even still have touch ups to do). Considering I’m hosting a work Christmas party tomorrow and we’re hosting Christmas Eve on Saturday, I figured it was time to AT LEAST get a toilet paper holder.

I hoped to paint some artwork for the room this weekend, but that didn’t happen. So while in Target a few days ago I saw something red and had a revelation. I decided to use red accents in the room for Christmas. The year round plan was aqua (you can read about that inspiration here), but I figured since all of our Christmas decor is blue and green, I’d change it up with some red and silver in the powder room.

I began to pick up some things around Target and yes, it killed me that I was paying full price. I don’t think I have ever paid full price for anything Christmas related, as I usually just buy stuff as I see it marked down on like Christmas Eve or after Christmas. But in the end, it was worth it.

We decided to put the towel ring between the toilet and sink. Previously, we had a cheap towel bar all the way across the room, so you would wash your hands, then proceed to drip water all over the hardwood floors to get to a towel which was to the left of the toilet the picture above. I used some seasonal soap in a red bottle (which you can’t see in the pictures, sorry the room is small) and a candy cane scented candle.

On the shelves I put 2 red candle stick holders that I got from Target. I have the same ones from last year in silver and blue (which I of course didn’t pay full price for but these I did, grr). I didn’t put candles on them because a) I couldn’t reach b) my ankles were already swollen from buying gifts all day and c) I don’t plan to light the candles so why put them up there? I’ll save the candles for some of my other candle holders this year πŸ™‚

Besides the standards of spare towels and t.p., you’ll notice that my pencil eraser “S” monogram has moved into the bathroom. Since our tree is in the entryway, the entryway table got moved into the living room on the side of the stairs. The monogram was teetering dangerously in a easy-for-cat-to-break zone, so I figured it was best to move it.

Okay these next elements were really hard to photograph because of the size of the room, I basically had to sit in the sink.

I hung two Ikea frames that we’ve been collecting to eventually make a gallery wall in our entryway. They are directly across from the toilet and on the wall next to the toilet.

Since I have a variety of white frames, I tried some larger ones but decided to go with this size. The larger one looked great across from the toilet, but was overwhelmingly dramatic when opening the door. Inside I put some wrapping paper, also from Target. It’s the foil-y shiny kind.

It’s very hard to capture how the metallic paper looks with the dark paint, but I love it.

I like the patterned wrapping paper so much that I’m debating whether or not to make my own prints for the room or just buy some non-holiday paper to frame for the long run. I’m loving the red also and thinking of picking up some clearance red items next week for the rest of the house next year. Since it’s going to be the baby’s first Christmas next year (a baby whose gender we now know :)), I want to go with a colorful and bright color scheme. Red, green and aqua it may be, so might as well stock up now!

The Tree 2011


Posted by Rebecca, December 19th, 2011

Do you know how many times per day I nearly write 2012? Everything I’ve been doing lately at work or thanks to baby has involved 2012, so my mind already thinks it’s here. But anyway, Mike and I finally got around to putting up our tree on Saturday. And that’s as far as we got with decorating.

We kept it simple and used the same teal/green/silver/gray-blue color scheme as last year. Next year I want to change it up a bit, but since I had a couple of final papers to write this weekend, simple was key.

I even still wrapped the banister in the same ribbon that I used last year. I’ve always wanted some lighted garland to hang and I considered buying some this year, but yeah, it was December 18th and I was trying to get a tree up. Once again, simple was key this year.

But! You may notice that I changed up the tree skirt this year!

It’s just 2 yards of fabric that I picked up at Joann wrapped around the tree stand. I was never a fan of our previous skirt, which was a blue velvety thing with some embroidered snowflakes on it. I bought it when we lived in our condo because it was the only blue or silver skirt I could find. The problem was that it was dry clean only and attracted some serious cat hair. Considering that Darwin loves sleeping under the tree, it never looked good. So i decided to look for some cotton fabric that would be easy to wash and would have a little more style. I might eventually sew the ends or make it a tree skirt, but for now it works perfectly fine.

Our tree got wet during Hurricane Irene and we were so relieved when it actually worked. Considering we just bought this 9 foot guy last year, I would have been seriously annoyed if we only got one year out of the first artificial tree we’ve ever had.

I guess the pictures kind of speak for themselves at this point, so here’s a bunch. Ps- Bonus points for the person who notices Macky’s butt….

Last year I had done some serious crafting and shopping for Christmas accessories by this point. This year is all about survival. I’m taking the day off from work on Wednesday and will hopefully finish decorating then. Our outside is not decorated, nor is the mantel… or dining room. I’m going for a minimalist look this year, even if its unintentional πŸ™‚

ps- I just turned in my final graduate school paper ever! Now I just need to make it through class tomorrow night and I’m done!! πŸ˜€

Christmas Wish List 2011


Posted by Rebecca, December 15th, 2011

Last year we made a list of things the house would ask Santa for, if House Santa existed (we all know that regular old Santa exists!) We still haven’t decorated anything around here since Mike was sick this past weekend and I’m still working on school stuff. In fact, Christmas is 10 days away and I still have no clue what I want (I just asked my family for gift cards). Totally unprepared this year, but of course, we could always use things to work on this house! πŸ™‚

Here’s our budget-less wishlist for this year:

1. A table saw


For all of the things we want to build around here, our little circular saw isn’t going to cut it (no pun intended). We want some bookcases and a bench in the new office, as well as a built-in bench wedged in the bay window of the new playroom.

2. Headphones Rug from Pottery Barn Teen

How awesome is this? And how appropriate would it be in our office (aka- SongMeanings/Lil House Headquarters)? I feel like we need to find somewhere to put this…

3. Kreg Jig


All of those things we want to build in #1? Well this thing would surely come in handy for some of them!

4. A maid.


Come on, there’s an unlimited budget with this list and with everything going on, House needs a cleaning! Also if the maid could fold that basket of laundry that’s been hanging around since Sunday, that would be fabulous…

5. Ikea Ekenas Chair

This list wouldn’t be complete without some Ikea! We spotted this chair in person in the gray-brown color a few weeks ago and I immediately liked it. We’re hoping to get one for the nursery, more about that decision another day πŸ™‚

6. Horses


Okay not that type of horses, I mean these ones…


Yeah we want a lot of tools since we don’t have much to make the bookcases and such we plan to. But back to that first horse picture! Our house is supposedly built on a former horse farm (evidenced by the old fence at our property line). Maybe 5 houses down, the property that backs those houses is STILL a horse farm so they have horses in their backyards! Granted, I don’t think I’ve ever really met a horse, but I love animals and I want a horse… or two… or five.

7. Million Dollar Baby Crib

I’ve been researching for a solid wood crib with a non-toxic finish, which is sadly hard to find. Then I discovered Million Dollar Baby, which makes solid wood cribs that not only meet, but exceed all federal regulations. The picture is the Annabelle crib, which I love, but we’re still planning on taking a trip to Delaware to check them out when we have more time.

8. Dremel Saw-Max

Okay I admit to having no specific reason for wanting this other than I saw the commercial and it looks awesome! I mean, a pregnant woman who wants a table saw for Christmas is a little weird, but a pregnant woman who wants this nice little handheld saw? Still weird, but slightly less.

It’s strange that I can’t really think of any more decor items I want. Most of the things on our makeover list to-do list include using things we already have, hanging some frames and pictures and lots and lots of molding! Other than the nursery furniture (which is still so up in the air), we’re looking a little DIY heavy around here as opposed to decor heavy. But that’s okay, Santa likes tools too, right? πŸ™‚

ps- in case you were curious as to what we’ve checked off our last year’s list, here’s an update…

  1. Delta Pilar Touch 2O Single Handle Pull-Down Kitchen Faucet
  2. Nail gun
  3. Dash & Albert area rugΒ …We bought a green Ikea rug instead
  4. A king sized mattress…Still desperately want/need more than ever now!
  5. Large White Drum Pendant Light…Still want (entryway brass is still hanging..)!
  6. Tool bench/storage…Still want (we have no where to put the tools on this list)!
  7. Some Apple Art… Still want!
  8. Snowblower
  9. Ikea Mongstad MirrorΒ Β Though we still haven’t put it in our bedroom!
  10. Custom paintings fromΒ Dog House Pet Portraits
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