Monday, August 30, 2010

Painting an end table...


I bought a pine end table several weeks ago off of Craigslist and had been meaning to paint it ever since.  Well, one thing led to another and I never started the project.  But, in an effort to unwind and de-stress tonight, I decided to give it a go...

Here is the end table that I started with...

The biggest issues I had to deal with were the scratches and water rings on the tabletop.  I knew I would have to go with an all-over color to mask a lot of this...
I think the big selling point for this piece was the legs.  Who doesn't love nice legs? :)
After several color/stain attempts, I decided to go with a quart of paint that I had yet to use.  The color is called Burlap from Sherwin Williams and I had originally bought the sample quart to try out in the living room (too light).  Although it appears very putty colored in the picture, it actually has a green undertone--I really liked it.
This was the look after one messy coat.  Although I liked the look (slightly rustic), I really thought it needed another coat.
After the second coat...
You can still barely see the wood graining through the two coats.  I really wanted the table to look imperfect--it's much easier to get away with a quick paint job that way.
Overall, I like the end result.  I may leave it as is.  However, I may add a bit of the ever-popular Stain and Seal to age the table a bit.  I've decided to sleep on it and look at it in the day time.  Often times I rush my projects to "be done" and regret it.  I am making my best attempt to enjoy the process more.

Well, the project helped to provide an outlet and a mental break.  Do you ever feel drained at the end of a work day?  I highly suggest painting something you can't really mess up!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Around the house...

Rather than trying to think up something cutesy to talk about, I thought I'd share a few little doo-dads around the house.  Believe it or not, a few things have been purchased, adjusted, and accesorized around here, even though I have failed to blog lately.  Here we go...

Something I had intended to change was the oval mirror in the guest bath.  It wasn't terrible, but it wasn't exactly what I wanted.  Another round mirror called to me this weekend--something had to be done.  Therefore, the card was swiped and the new mirror was hung.  Here she is...

You may be thinking, what's the difference?  Well, for me, it really just boils down to liking this mirror better.  Specifically, I like the "beefier" look this mirror provides.  What does the Hubs have to say about it?  "There isn't much space to see yourself in."  Special Note:  Andy uses this bathroom now on occasion--still not sure why.  My question--Why in the world should a boy who never fixes his hair, makeup, or anything of the sorts care about having sufficient mirror space?  Mind boggling...

Close-up...I sort of feel like this belongs on a ship somewhere--does anyone else get a nautical feel from this mirror?  If you look closely, you can see where my parents' boxer, Murphy, licked the mirror while it was at their house.  Why lick a mirror?  Better question--Why have I yet to clean the mirror?

We've also added a few little pillows around here...thanks Mom!

When I spotted this daisy fabric at Fabric House (then later at Brentwood Interiors), I felt like it would really liven up this semi-boring bedding we have in one of the guest bedrooms.  My mom is also working on curtains from the same fabric...


Recognize this striped fabric (Craigslist chair re-do)?  Mom made me a pillow out of the remaining piece so that the stripe could be repeated in the room.

I also attempted to finish out my leaning bookcase decor...

Not much has changed...I just added the basket o' balls on the bottom shelf and the wee little star on the top shelf. 

I had been looking for a star much like this one for a while.  I had spotted some at Pottery Barn and decided there was NO way I was paying what they wanted for one.  Luckily, TJ Maxx came to my rescue for a mere $9.99.  This picture (not sure where it came from)helped me originally fall in love with glass stars...

Can you see the stars on the table?  Yes, a bit cuter than what I found, but a similar feel.  I take what I can find for a deal...

The basket was 7 bucks at Hobby Lobby.  I actually purchased it to use on a coffee table, but it was too big and awkward.  Yes, I realize I need to add a few more decorative balls.  If anyone knows a more acceptable term for these (other than balls), please let me know. :)

Well, I believe my bed pillow is already calling my name.  My, how working full time sucks the energy right out of you.  Have a great night!!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Birthday Bash...

In honor of my 25th birthday (yes, I feel old), Andy and I met up with my parents, little brother, aunt, and cousins in Murfreesboro Tuesday night for dinner.  We had so much fun catching up, eating cupcakes, and opening presents (well, I did)!  It was a really fun night and a really great ending to a long day at school.  Here are a few pictures from the night...

The night started with Andy presenting me with the mirror I was dying to have!  It's a wormwood mirror that looks old and antique-ish--I love it.  Way to go, Andy!  He also presented me with a couple of seasons of King of Queens (love) and the Insanity workout program.  He listens well. :)


We then headed to Murfreesboro to eat at Old Chicago (a pizza place).  My cousin McClain was given a kid's menu...he's obviously way too old for that.  HAHA!



  The boys--Connor, Andy, and McClain (minus Dad).


The girls--Paula, me, and Mom.

HAHA--Andy snapped this picture of my dad.  At least he's accounted for, right?


One of my gifts from my parents was my newly framed Master's diploma.  My mom had it framed in this antiqued-looking frame (the picture doesn't do it justice).  It looks so official!


My parents also gave me this vintage set of pool balls--yes, I wanted them. :)  My mom and I had both picked out a set several weeks ago--they look so cute in our bonus room!


I just had to show this one...my mom gave me this gift last.  In case you can't tell what it says..."Mad Money for the FLEA Market."  So cute!  Why didn't she become a teacher?


A picture of my new mirror in its new home...

Although not all of my awesome gifts were featured, you get the idea....it was a great birthday!  Thanks to the fam for taking time out to make it special!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

It's that time of year...

Have you ever felt a bit like this???


Well, getting back into the swing of things has certainly worn me out this past week.  And, Duncan has been spending a lot more time in his cage, so he has been pretty pooped too.  Before you know it we will be back in the swing of things and used to the grind again.

It definitely helps having Andy back in town.  He spent the last week in Las Vegas and poor Duncan was lost without him.  The light had truly gone from his eyes. :)

On another note, I do have a couple of projects brewing at the moment.  Our vintage wall map came in a couple of weeks ago and I am planning to get a roll of cork to back it with on the wall.  I also purchased a pine end table on Craigslist that I intend to sand down and paint a fun color.  I'm trying to keep small projects going so that I keep a good balance with work--we will see how it goes!

Last but not least, Andy took me to see Ramona and Beezus this afternoon in honor of my birthday (that falls on a work day).  It is SO stinkin' cute!  I LOVED the Ramona books as a kid, and teaching has allowed me to continue my love for them.  If you like the books and want to see a cute, clean movie, definitely check it out.  Oh, and props to Andy for risking numerous cool points to take me.  Gotta love him!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Ramblings from a school teacher...

Summer is officially over.  Insert sad face here____.  So long lazy mornings, not always wearing makeup, and spending quality time with Duncan the dog.  It's back to getting up way too early, crayons, and oral reading fluency discussions. 

I've had many mixed emotions about this school year because I am making a change.  I had gotten really comfortable with teaching third grade (or as comfortable as you can really get with a fast-paced curriculum and standardized testing pressures), but I took a leap of faith and agreed to a slight change in my position.  Believe me, this was a huge step--how much I love what is comfortable and familiar--I'm so nervous!

I've been praying a lot lately about this school year.  I sincerely hope that my teaching partner and I can be successful in what we are doing.  I pray for the little ones in our classroom who may or may not be ready for the challenges that the third grade presents.  I pray that I grow thick skin and confidently teach the way I think that I should.  I pray that I can be less self-critical and more willing to grow as an educator.  I hope that I don't let my job consume me and I keep a good life balance.  I hope that I take risks and think more creatively for the benefit of my students.  I pray that God uses me for good this year in one way or another. 

The beauty of teaching is that each school year brings a fresh start.  A new set of faces and new school supplies.  We met several of our new students this afternoon at Open House and it really hit me...the kids have high hopes too.  They hope for a friendly teacher who will be fair.  They hope to recognize a few friendly faces in their new class.  They hope to feel safe and to take a few field trips.  They hope for recess breaks and Good Behavior Tickets.  Although some of these things get lost in the shuffle along the way, most kids really do look forward to a successful school year.  Hopefully we can make that happen!

To kids and school teachers everywhere--best of luck for a great school year!


Monday, August 9, 2010

Okay, now the bathroom is REALLY done...

I worked really hard yesterday afternoon to finish up the mirror wall so that Andy could help me hang the new mirror before I got back to work this week.  You see, starting today, I have to be in 100% teacher mode...home projects most likely won't get all of the attention that they have this summer.  Luckily, we finished everything up and put the bathroom back in order.  We LOVE the completely finished product--just what we wanted.  Andy really says it best: "It almost looks like a hotel bathroom!"  HAHA--Gotta love him. :)

Here are the completely finished master bathroom pics...







Well, there you have it!  It is so nice to have a bathroom that we are proud of--so worth the wait! 

Saturday, August 7, 2010

All in a day's work...

This post will be mostly pictures--there are so many things to share!  My parents and brother came up today, and we knocked out the master bathroom (minus the mirror)!  It was a very long day, but I am so happy with the results. A few other small projects were finished up around the house that I will also have to showcase.  Here it goes...

I'll start with the bathroom.  A few reminders of how it looked before today...


Seashell sink...


Our lovely lighting and mirror...


Snazzy faucet and rusted-out drain...and, yes, I actually do clean the sink now and then...it had pretty much lost most of its finish. :)


Another shot at the lighting...you need to really get the creepy effect.  Can you imagine trying to put on makeup in this lighting, ladies???


I know, I know...Why would we EVER want a change?


We started by removing the mirror...this honkin' thing had to GO!


Andy is just so dern proud of himself...


HAHA--Ridiculous...


Getting that puppy outta there...Hercules! Hercules!


Tah-Dah!  It looks so good, we may not put up another one!  NOT!


This piece of plywood had to be painted to be mounted over the light box...


Andy told me to smile for this one...


Donesy.


Next, we gathered all of the supplies to hopefully make the day go faster...Andy was smitten with our new sink.


Once my parents got to the house, we started in this part of the bathroom.  The edges of the floor needed caulking and the quarter round had to go down.  And, yes, the toilet needed to come out of our bedroom and back to its home in here (gross, I know).


Andy and Dad having a "potty" in the bathroom. :)


Donesy.


Another shot...


Andy and I didn't do so bad, did we?


Next, we moved to the vanity top...SO much better!  We chose a granite top from Lowe's--I really liked the white bowl and the speckled look of the stone.  It was a bit pricier than our previous vanity top replacement, but really worth it.


Next, the faucet was hooked up.  Yet again, this was a complicated process, but my dad is pretty talented at rigging things.  He made it work!


The oil-rubbed bronze faucet was so worth the extra investment--it really turned out well with the granite. 


The vanity top caulked and ready to go!


Next, we tackled the lighting.  The plywood I painted was cut and nailed up, a trim piece was added, and the new pendant lights were mounted.


With the lights on...


Up close--the giraffe print crackle on the shade worked really nicely with the granite and the gray walls.  I was really pleased!


The big picture...

As you can see, I still have quite a bit of work to do.  I need to sand, spackle, and paint this wall (like I did in the guest bath), and then we need to mount the new framed mirror.  I am super excited to see how the new mirror fits in with the changes.  I'm hoping for a really dramatic look!

My mom also brought up some new curtains she had made for our living room.  Yes, we already had curtains in the living room, but my mom and I had stumbled across the CUTEST fabric at a discount fabric store that we knew would just go SO well in the living room...so you must know what happened.  The old curtains got the boot...well, they were moved to another room.  Here are the new curtains up and running...


The new curtains!


Here is a close-up of the fabric...it has EVERY color in our living room in it.  The wall color, the couch and chair, the blacks of the furniture, and the pops of red I've used...couldn't be more perfect.


We could only find a certain amount of the fabric in the store, so my mom had to improvise.  She added an off-white fabric to the top to finish out the curtains.  I felt like it worked to lighten up the room a bit.  Thanks, Mom!


Don't fret, the living room curtains found a new home in the bonus room. 


Andy is already loving the extra dose of red in his Alabama room. :)

My dad also helped us to FINALLY hook up the water to our new refrigerator (that we bought forever ago).  This was a MASSIVE deal to me--I have not had ice in a drink (while at home) since I moved in!!!  We had bought this spiffy fridge with filtered water and ice in the door and had not even had it hooked up to the water.  My dad has nearly saved my life.  As I type, I have an ice cold glass of lemonade by my side...heavenly!

The next little project that was finished this weekend involved the leaning bookcase that I ordered several weeks ago.  Did I mention the first one came in and was broken?  Very frustrating.  We received our new one on Friday and I aimed to put it together myself...


So I removed the pieces from the box...


Lined them up in the shape of a bookcase...and waited for the Bozemaster to come home from work. :)


He did a great job!  This little number found its place in the living room...


Admittedly, I could stand to accessorize the bookcase a bit differently, but I feel that this would entail purchasing things.  Why not just use what I have for now???  Music to my husband's ears. :)

Well, I think I may have set a record for number of pictures included in a blog post, but I just HAD to share what's been happening around here.  Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

P.S.--Thanks a million Mom and Dad!  You guys are a lot of the reason we have a spiffy little dwelling!!!