Monday, February 27, 2012

I Can See the Light! Yay!

 We're more than halfway through our renovations before selling the house, and we are all loving the look of it...almost enough to stay! I said "almost". :)
The trim work is done, with a few nail holes and paint touch ups left, which I'll get to today amid my laundry folding. Mike re-hung the last of the newly painted doors downstairs, and I need to finish painting some baseboards down there yet, but we started on removing the carpet from the stairs. And that is a yucky chore that we were almost regretting. The carpet is over 30 years old however, and needs to's dusty, tromped down shag that would have been all the rage in 1982. We're covering the stair treads in stained oak...after we get rid of the nails and staples that is. Of course when you start removing that kind of thing you always have to fill unsightly gaps with some nice trim boards or something, because the left side of the staircase has a gap where the drywall didn't quite meet it.

We have found the area we'd like to build a house in, and with that in mind have also picked the school the kids will go to. It's a pre-kindergarten to grade seven school, with the high school that they would be going to just around the corner from where we will build. I'm loving the idea that, while they will get bused to school during elementary, they can walk to high school easily. That being said, we'd be renting a condo or townhouse while we build, and if we aren't lucky on the location the kids will need to be driven to school for the first year. It's an experience that we're looking forward to going through...picking out colors, carpet, and cabinets and for the first time ever letting someone else do all the work!

Some examples of things we love, without giving too much away:
chocolate subway tile in kitchen 
light lino

kitchen countertop in quartz on top of dark cabinets

contrasting kitchen island counter top in quartz, and in butler's pantry, on top of ivory cabinets

my very own butler's pantry, minus the window..a place for appliances, toast making and cookbooks, as well as tons of storage
trim work darker than the all this storage for backpacks and shoes

As you can tell, I'm much more excited about the kitchen than anywhere else...I'm fine with style and design as long as it's functional and practical. But the kitchen...that is my favorite place to be, and so I'm putting all my eggs in one basket and having what I like in there. Thankfully my ideas mesh with Mike's, and so we're on the same page in that area. And of course, I'll definitely keep you posted on this!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

"Fame" Dance Pictures

Something that was new to me this year was putting on the proper makeup on Jacelyn for pictures and then again on recital day. I'm used to picture day being on recital day, therefore only dressing up and applying makeup once. But she did great, and sat for an entire movie length for me to do her hair. Yes it took an hour and a half to curl all that hair. It was cute in the end, and she liked bobbing around to feel it bounce. A lot of parents used hair pieces and wigs I noticed last night, probably so that they didn't have to put their kids through all the curling and bum-numbing sitting. But I like the natural look of Jacelyn's own hair so she'll just have to suffer. The makeup thankfully only took less than 10 minutes, most likely because I use it all everyday and so I sped through pretty well. Recital day is two months away and already I'm so excited to see all the kids dance on stage. Jacelyn never practices her hip hop routine at home, but her feet are constantly tap-tap-tapping around the house on our hard laminate. I suppose that is a sign, and I won't be putting her in hip hop next year. She loves to tap and she loves Jazz as well, and so we will stick with those. She also wants to get into gymnastics, ever since her friend invited Jacey to watch during friendship week at the gymnastics club. Ah big plans for the "big city".

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Hitting the Slopes

Brandon went to Table Mountain yesterday to try out his new snowboard. He got in a lesson and practiced his heart out. By mid afternoon he was able to go down the hill and only fall a few times. Glad he is trying something new. He can't wait to go again, and we will have to get in as much hill time as we can from now until it closes for the season.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Brandon Plays

Here are some new (and old) pieces Brandon has been playing. He's doing so well. His piano teacher gave him his recital piece to begin practicing as well, and so he has been plucking away at it. We're proud of you buddy!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Bring on the Renovations

Well, we have started updating the outdated 80's vibe that we had going on in the house, making it ready for springtime showings when we list the house this spring. It is a bit of an undertaking, but we knew that in order to sell the house the interior would have to be finished off properly...and that means new doors, trim, carpet in the master and some painting.

three new doors down, two left to go!

new carpet in the master and walk in closet!

 And some painting was definitely needed in the basement, even though it seems like we just did all of that not too long ago! The kids are famous for their "Bombs Away" attempt at cleaning up toys...and throwing them down the stairs. The spackle job was huge, and I walked around filling forever. Mike sanded the other day, and we'll give it all a fresh coat of paint. The rest of the house is painted with Ralph Lauren paint, which is no longer available, and so color matching is pretty much out of the question. Which is probably ok, considering the next owners will want to repaint anyways to make the house their own.

oh the holes, holes, holes, HOLES!

whiter is brighter...especially in a dark hallway

So, with a few more doors left to put on, and trim for the rest of the house (the living room is the only room finished so far), and the little bits left over like some new face plates and other aesthetics, we will be ready to take some pictures and put the house on the market. If anyone you know is wanting a 1500 square foot 4 bedroom house in Maidstone, be sure to send them our way!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Rest in Peace Whitney Houston...I Will Always Love You

The heartbreaking news of Whitney Houston's passing shocked and stunned me yesterday when my aunt called to deliver the news. I have always been a fan of Whitney, and who doesn't remember her performance in "The Bodyguard"? That voice, those white teeth, and of course, her remake of Dolly Parton's "I Will Always Love You".
Being a wild child of the 80's, and a huge fan of 70's and 80's music, I had all the must haves in music playing on my ghettoblaster at any given time. Best of all I remember my "Greatest Love Of All" tape, and putting on my mom's makeup and curling my hair into corkscrews just like Whitney's to lip sing into my mirror to "How Will I know". I knew every word.
So this video, while hard to find, was like listening to my past. It's of Whitney, fresh on the music stage in 1986, singing my favorite song. The world will miss such a beautiful talent.

And of course, this 1994 clip of Whitney, the year she won a grammy award for "I Will Always Love You". I dare you to listen without a tear in your eye. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Scrapbook Corner

Papers and elements: Mary Mary Contrary @2ps

Papers, scallop frame and word graphic: Twitterpated and Cupcakes @2ps
Ribbon, flower embellishment, and frame: Shannon Freeman @2ps

Saturday, February 4, 2012

School Valentines

I saw a neat article in a magazine about four years ago about different ideas for school valentines. Kids always come home with the same Spiderman and Hello Kitty or Mickey Mouse valentines sold at their local Walmart, and it gets a little boring after so many years.
One project that stood out, and even after four years I still thought it was cool, was to take your kid's picture, in a stance where they are holding out their fist towards the camera. Then after you print them off you make a slit at the top and bottom of their fist and slide a sucker through. It looks like they are handing their special valentine a treat.
I stood on a tall stool and angled the camera so that the kids were looking up at me, which made their fist almost as large as their head giving the photo a whimsical feel to it.
They turned out great, and the kids love them too.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Something to Share:

I was surfing Facebook today and fell in love with this guy's version of "Someone Like You" by Adele. Worth a listen..lots of emotion in this song and in his voice.
Of course, since someone captured it on video, maybe his voice will soon buy him more than some change in the subway.