Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Bathroom Redo

   If you have ever spent time with my husband, you will eventually learn of his distaste for social media. I love Instagram and the connections I have fostered through Facebook. I experiment with Twitter, mostly as a follower of people that interest me. And this blog has been an 8 year digital scrapbook of sorts. Social media has become a daily interaction for me.

   Despite his reservations about our family's presence in cyberspace, this post has my husband's full support. Whenever we do a house project, he asks if I am going to put it on the blog, if I have taken pictures for the blog, etc. Which is ironic because I am usually so caught up in the DIY that the documenting is the last thing on my mind. Having said that, here is what I captured of the basement bathroom redo from this summer.

   This is best I could find for a before picture.

   The floor was not damaged downstairs but the linoleum that was in there left a lot to be desired. I had been swooning over penny tile for awhile so I thought this was our chance. Matt and his mom were so great, in a matter of days they patched drywall, added texture,  and painted.

   That piece of ceiling above the toilet is where I noticed the ceiling sagging and upon investigating, my entire hand went through the ceiling. I joked in my distress that the sh*t had literally hit the (bathroom) fan!

      If we were not in a rush to get out of the hotel we were staying in and we did not have a strict budget, we would have had the entire bathroom drywall replaced and textured by a professional. It would have been more than the insurance was going to cover and somehow I imagine another crack at this when our 4 children are older. This shower gets a lot of use!
   As I mentioned, I really wanted the penny tile. We found these hexagon shaped small tiles at Lowe's and decided to pair the white tiles with a charcoal grout. Less cleaning! Matt and I had no experience tiling, and it shows. We also felt sore for a week after this. The cleaning up of the grout really got shorted because we both were achy from laying the tile.
    I like the floor but we were in way over our head. I think if we had it to do again I would stain/paint the concrete floor that was under the linoleum. It was in great shape and would have been quite functional for the heavy traffic in here.

    We had a plumber get the toilet and sink hooked back up. We do not mess with plumbing around here, especially when it was a leak that started this whole disaster.
Matt hung an additional piece of molding when he replaced the baseboards so that I could have many hooks along the wall. I thought it added interest and functionality. We have never had any luck with towel bars at our house, too many boys that want to be Tarzan. Originally everything was a standard white. I liked how clean and bright it was because there is no natural light in there.
   But as we lived with it, it was apparent that we are not in the bright and white stage of life. I found a nice gray, Silver Screen by Glidden, that still kept it light. The real kicker was the shower curtain I found at World Market. It brought the whole vision I had together.

   It is hard to photograph this small space but here are my best attempts. 

Thursday, November 5, 2015

home sweet home

   When we purchased our home 16 months ago, there was no back yard. And there is still no back yard. I know, anti-climactic. The idea was to get going on a brick patio this summer, fix the wonky fence, and throw down some grass seed. Instead, our upstairs bathroom leaked into our downstairs bathroom in June. We spent the summer repairing the downstairs bathroom. We decided to DIY it as much as possible and that is why we haven't finished the upstairs bathroom. DIY is exhausting and takes so much time. Not going to lie, it was a huge bummer. The house was remodeled before we bought it so we were not planning on any major overhauls, other than the back yard.

   I am trying to put on my gratitude glasses and shift perspective. I did hang twinkle lights. Everything looks better with twinkle lights. I did plant some pots and manged to grow flowers, herbs, and  eggplants.
   I did manage to sip tea outside on summer mornings when the hot air balloons were drifting overhead. I did manage to paint the front door a few times.

   (She told me she wanted to be red.)
   I did plant some lavender to trying to keep the neighborhood cats away. I did enjoy watching the boys mow and weed whack.

   I did savor many meals Matt grilled up. Or one of his many perfectly golden marshmallows in a s'more. I did enjoy hilariously told ghost stories around the fire and the sounds of Kaleb playing the guitar.

   I did go on stunningly beautiful walks through the nature reserve that is just blocks from our home.
   I did give our bedroom wall a moody makeover.
   I did hang up the #summerselfieseries I enjoyed with Koen this year. The laundry room has never made me happier.
   And lastly, I did relish every bouquet gathered from other people's gorgeous yards. Ours will come someday, along with a new upstairs bathroom. As the only female in this tribe, the days of two toilets can't come soon enough!

Monday, November 2, 2015

Halloween 2015

    Halloween is always a fun time at our house. We all get into the spooky spirit as the leaves start to fall. I thought my obsession with the holiday came with having sons. My boys got really into the ghoulish and gory, even from a young age.

    This year, I was reflecting on all the memories with my mom from Halloween. She was always having us trick or treat our house before we went out into the neighborhood. She answered our door one year with panty-hose on her head! She would craft my sister and I whatever costumes we dreamed up. I am sure she sparked my love for Halloween.

 It is most definitely Collin's favorite holiday. He was helping me set up little vignette's all over the house. And the kid is not wrong, it all about free candy people!
   We headed to two trunk or treats before the 31st. Each time the costumes changed a bit for some of us. Here we are as Medusa, a cowboy, Elvis, and Raphael.

   Aden "clowning around" with a friend from church. (check the Cookie Monster trunk in the background, so cute.)
   Grandma Ellen's painted pumpkins sure beat the hassle of carving up jack o' lanterns.

   This was the trunk or treat that the City of Meridian hosts. We went as a witch, a cowboy, Elvis, Enderman (it's a video game thing), and Parker's costume was an ensemble of bad life choices including a neck tattoo that read "NO REGERTS."
   HUGE-ly upsetting moment for me to see Kaleb warmly embrace this fellow.

   Even though the house had been decorated for a month, at the last minute I made this bloody rag and smeared "HELP" on the mirror. The boys lost their mind. They thought it was so creepy and funny and wanted cryptic messages on all the surfaces of the house. It is such a delight to gross THEM out every once and awhile. I'd like to think it was my panty-hose on the head moment. :)
   Hands down my favorite TV show of the year is the Neflix series Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. I knew I wanted to dress up as her this year and I was quite pleased with how it turned out.
   Matt was a rodeo clown. When we first met, he told me he was going to be a rodeo clown when he grew up. Let us all hope this was the moment he was referring to!
Thank ya, thank ya very much.
One of the Men in Black, watch out for the neuralizer.
   Holding. Penalty is 5 yards, automatic first down. Or something like that. Kaleb looked great and barely annoyed me with that whistle at all. (Recorders and whistles are Satan's instruments in the hands of children.)
   Collin had his heart set on being an Enderman from Minecraft. An all black costume with a box on his head. Yikes. I tried to convince him on so many occasions to switch but he held his ground. And he was not alone. We saw many other characters from this game and he was a huge hit with kids his age. Many asked to have his costume!
   One other thing about all these costumes worth noting; I did not have to spend a dime! Thank you dress up box and a grandma who frequents the thrift store.
   Parker's friend joined us for the night. They were often thought to be the Blues Brothers or LDS Missionaries.
   Our group met up to trick or treat with Aden's friends. The night was perfect Idaho Halloween weather. So pleasant!

   And now, if you will allow me one rant: No one that is considerate and costumed is too old to trick or treat! Your only vote, in my opinion, is to open the door or not. To single out siblings that seem too old or too tall is just mean. Maybe there would be less teenagers smashing pumpkins and terrorizing animals on Halloween if they were welcome to trick or treat with their families. UGGGGGH.

UPDATE***** My friend Hannah sent me this post on Facebook yesterday. Very well said and I completely agree! I need to map out a route of these folks for next year.