Sunday, January 12, 2014

2014: New Year = New Attitude

Cue Patti Labelle!

Okay , obviously first of all, you'll notice that the blog is back.  Maybe this will help keep me truer to my resolution list.   Maybe it's just a way to keep long-distance family informed of unimportant events that they would have otherwise not heard about.  Maybe I'm just jaded with Facebook.  Probably most likely, I love to journal, and someday my kids might care...  I just want to blog more and think I might be more inclined to do so with my new tablet Santa got me.  If you consider that I didn't blog once in 2013, mission accomplished with this one blog!  That is what you call setting yourself up for success!

So, Resolution #1: Blog more.

My next resolution is to get in better shape.  Again.  This includes running more.   I set my 2014 running goal for 500 miles,  including 2 5Ks, with only whole miles counting.   Also, no pop; I'll be starting that tomorrow.  And it also means back to using MyFitnessPal.  

Resolution #2: Get fit.

Obviously, organizing is my next resolution.   I'd really like to work on a monthly menu planner.  I'd like to create a detained inventory of all our household items.  I want our DVDs and Books organized.  I want to go through the bajillions of burnt DVDs and CDs to get our files reorg'd or tossed.  I want the playroom to stay organized.  I would like our inordinate amount of crap to be simplified.

Resolution #3: Organize!

The house needs kitchen cabinets to be finished, and Brad and I have plans to handle that in the spring.  We also want to finish the basement, and with God's grace, we'll be working on that in the summer.  

Resolution #4: Finish the house.

I am the worst culprit of not printing our photos.  This year, I would like to finally do and print our family photobooks.

Resolution #5: Create and have Family Yearbooks Printed.

Pinterest is the next resolution I have.  I have a goal, albeit abit zealous, of completing at least 130 pins (recipes included).  

Resolution #6: Pound out some Pinterest Pins.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Artwork in Mark & Kevin's Room

We had a Mustang theme before, but we really want our kids to have their "dream" rooms, within our ability, to give them a retreat from the reno called the rest of the house...
Here's the old artwork in Mark & Kevin's Room,
and we switched out the old ads and photos for colorful pics of Cars 2 characters. We also included some maps of races on the World Grand Prix (Cars 2 Race), with tiny Cars 2 characters hot glued to the pictures of the maps. This artwork swap cost a whopping $12; I bought a cardstock book at Lowes that included all the character pics - just cut the book apart. It also included the miniature cars which I hot glued onto the picture glass, and it included a huge map of all the WGP places, which I cut apart and used for the other frames. Voila!

So Fresh and So Clean

This is what the bathroom looked like before we bought the house. Things you can't see are that they used 4 different types of tile on the walls and floor (on the wall, they didn't even use the same depth of tile so as you ran your hand across it, it would bump up and down with the different thicknesses). The grout was originally a disgusting grey that was never sealed and now was black... You can click on the pics for larger views.
For the vanity, I had wanted that $2200 Pottery Barn look, but affordability kept us from purchasing... So with a $35 1940's Craigslist find, we set out to accomplish the same "comfortable" feel.
Some sweat equity, some paint, a new Quartz countertop (yeah, a $275 splurge - but it included the undermount sink), some $50 new Satin Nickel Hardware, and a complete and masterful cabinet rework later, this is what she became! Brad completely reworked the dresser from the inside to accomodate the sink. The drawer bottoms were only 1/4" plywood, that after 70 years was beginning to sag, so instead of patching out the drawers, Brad rebuilt new drawer boxes and used the original drawer faces. Overall, our Master Bathroom got new tile flooring ($100), new vinyl trim ($30), new door/satin nickle door hardware/magnetic door stopper ($135), a new "taller" toilet ($100), new Kohler rainfall showerheads ($300), new paint ($60), some new drywall to replace the tile backerboard we had before and to build the soffit over the shower so we could adjust those rainfall showerheads ($40), new vanity with custom hardware ($460), new batroom fan ($60), new lighting fixture ($90), new bathroom hardware - towel racks/TP holder ($60), and there you have it. Under $1500 for our reno.
To-do becomes To-DoNE - at least in this room...

Monday, February 20, 2012

Renovation Wars...

Click on the pics to toggle back and forth and see what we've done.
Well, here you go - this was the original layout of the house.
And here is what it looks like now.
And here is the future layout.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

This past month

Here is little Mark this morning. Poor little guy. Sick with a cold and slight pinkeye...Tired baby?
Eating his O's this A.M.
We finally got the purple LED lights put up in Kayleigh's canopy.
Here is Kev's bed before we sanded and stripped the Headboard and Footboard, and before we ground the rust off the frame, painted the frame, and cut out all the old springs (we used a piece of plywood to create a platform bed). These beds I found on craigslist last year for the boys ($60 for the set - they reminded me of "Wheel Well" on Cars).
and, the after...
Here are photos of what the varnich and unpainted frame looked like before and after on Kev's bed.
and here's the kids enjoying said bed (by the way, to give you the full b4/after effect, we only did one bed - Kev's so he wasn't without a bed; Mark's is still to be done)
Can you spot Kayleigh at a recent Girl Scout meeting?
We took the kids to the zoo while it was free - that was a fun afternoon. Mark didn't know what to make of the meercat.
Kayleigh had Josie over for a playdate.
I got Christmas cards organized in a cute booklet we can cherish year after year.
and then I did our wedding cards, finally!!! LOL, I even fount a dollar bill in one of them - BONUS!!! LOL!!
Heather had given us a gingerbread house kit for Christmas, so we finally made them in January.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

and with a New Year, comes...

New Year's Resolutions!

I basically have 3.

1. Get things on the "to-do" list to the "ta-done" list. You know that commercial during Christmas for Target, where it had everyone going, "Done." "Done." "Done." "Done-" "-done-" "-done."? Well, all December, with our sick-and-on-the-mend family, I was longing for that feeling. It didn't really come... Like ever. Even when I finally got the family calendar done after 7 weeks past the date on my calendar I had circled as "ORDER CALENDARS." Or when I finished Ange's baby announcement... Ugh... The closest I came was when I had those two things done and submitted taxes on the first day you could e-file (which should come as no surprise, because I've always been 100% on top of those - I don't think I've ever submitted past February, and I thank my dad for long ago walking me through 1040, and honestly, I stay on top of our taxes throughout the year). I should note our to-do list currently has 75 items on it.... Hmmmm... Too aggressive??

2. Get back in shape. I know this will be a year-long process, but now that we're done having kids (or as we say it, I'm just done being preggers, we may adopt someday, you never know), but I want to finally lose the weight. What does this mean? Well, ultimately I have to give up my one vice - pop - which is direct conflict with resolution #1. In order to be productive, I need to not be as stressed, and pop de-stresses me. Ugh.

3. Keep paying down our debt. Brad's the only one of us with student loans. We started in 2005 with close to $40,000 in student loan debt, and just last month, that number dropped below $10 G's. Hopefully, 2012 will see us have the thing paid off. Wow, would that be phenomenal!

And there you have it, my resolutions. Wish me luck getting to the end of the year being able to say, "Done."

Monday, January 9, 2012

New Year - New Pics

Here is our Christmas tree after Santa came! Apparently Mark couldn't look at the camera long enough for one photo. Too much shiny paper!
Here I go baking cookies with my brand-new Kitchen-Aid from mom and dad!!

Daddy and Kevin go on a "nature walk" trying to spot some deer with Levi. Apparently all there saw was a fast little fish swimming in the creek.

Kevin and Markie take a bath and get cleaned up. Show Mater, Kev!
Smile Mark!
Those are bubbles, Mark!

Markie plays on Mommy and Daddy's bed in his new Carhartts!

Grandma shows Grandpa how to icing cookies (LOL)
Kevin likes the snowman.
Markie and Grandpa discuss the weather and sports.
Kayleigh plays with Flynn Rider and Rapunzel.
Kevin pushes his police truck around.
I made this wall vinyl for mom for Christmas. It says, "A House is made of Walls and Beams, a Home is built with Hopes and Dreams."
We only went through like 50 photos trying to get everyone to smile for this pic
Grandma and Mark