Friday, December 14, 2012

Let there be LIGHT!

I ordered lights for the back room quite some time ago but it was never really a priority since we had a ghetto light from the previous owners already up back there. I guess the motivation of having people over helped "us" out and along with getting the door stained, most of the trim painted, we also got some fancy lights up. 



And here's a better picture of the stained bathroom door:

 Ryan also put up the molding around this back door and it is such an improvement. Maybe I'll start enjoying doing laundry.... #whoamikidding

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Christmas Spirit

Sorry it's been so long, I can think of a million excuses but they're all pretty lame (especially the grad school one) so, all that really matters is that I'm back! We've been dabbling in a few things over the past few weeks so I'll do a quick catch up.

We tried our hand at re-upholstering the ottomans in the family room. My Mom and I had actually done one a couple of years back in dark fabric and I wanted to re-do it with a lighter fabric as well as do the second one. I did have to call in the "expert" (Ryan) but it sure does look good and quite functional!


Taking it apart

Hammering in the staples

Oh hey there Leo!

So, I started on the second one only to find the top was a moldy mess so we're going to have to rebuild the top which might take a little while but hey, one is better than none. #justanotherday

We also got our first Christmas tree and crazily enough, it is still standing. I kept the decorations simple around the house since we're still working on it.



AND last night I got home from school to Ryan working on the molding for the back door.

And just for fun, I looked back on two years ago and what this doorway looked like (warning: not pretty)...

After Ryan had started taking down the plaster....

Hideous back door...

Looking back at my pictures to find one of this back door really made me stop and think about how much we have to be thankful for this year and how lucky I am to have found such a talented hubby who willingly tackles these crazy projects.

Friday, November 9, 2012

New Shelf

My second Ana White project was a shelf for over the toilet in our half bathroom. I had Ryan help me with cutting down the wood (I'm rather terrified of the table saw) but besides that it was a super easy afternoon project. I went with the rustic look again but I got a darker stain since it was going up on dark grey walls. I then put the three pieces of wood together with the nails that I've become obsessed with (and I only had one casualty) and it was ready to hang. I've learned that hanging things is just not my thing (as evidenced by the nail holes behind the mirror I put up last week) so Ryan helped me with that step too #thankgoodnessIhaveahandyhubby.


I love it and it was such a quick project (take that Pottery barn overpriced ledges). I'm thinking of making more for my family room as an easy way to display pictures. Maybe it will motivate me to actually order my wedding pictures....

Monday, November 5, 2012

Sandy Project

Over the long, hurricane weekend I built my first piece of furniture via my new book and I am now hooked. Let me rewind, for a long while I had decided that our entryway needed more organization so when I came across plans for entry storage with cubbies I was sold.

So, I took my handy book to Home Depot picked out the wood that I needed (I decided on pine) and had the Home Depot guy make 95% of my cuts for me. The only cut I had to do myself (note:Ryan did this cut) was the decorative cut at the bottom of the piece.

Once all my cuts were done, we set out to distress the wood (although later I would find that me + hammer+ nails= distressing enough).

We found the best way was to hammer chains in to the pieces of wood.
 We used some stain that we had laying around the house to give it a coat before assembling.

A couple of days of drying later, we were ready to put it together with some nails and wood glue. 

Apparently I am terrible at nailing straight so there were quite a few incidents where the nails came through the wood and had to be pushed out and nailed back in... like I said, distressed. BUT in the end, it came together quite nicely.

Starting to come together. Note the wood on the bottom is actually our joists from the kitchen.
Once it was all put together, I found some baskets at Home Goods that fit in to the cubbies (Ryan immediately claimed two).

Pre hooks

Fast forward to our hooks arriving and putting the whole piece up on the wall and here is the finished project:

So much more functional. It is so nice to be able to keep our hats/gloves/scarves in the cubbies. On another note, I really want a nail gun :)

I finished my second (much easier) project from the book last night so once I put it up, I'll share pictures. Meanwhile, Ryan has been working on his plumbing skills and we now have our radiator installed in the kitchen #warmthwin.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Learning Curve

In an attempt to not return the kitty (just kidding- sort of), Ryan set out to make him a cat "condo" in hopes that he would hopefully spend his time scratching it and not our lovely new furniture. Sigh. Being the uber resourceful guy that my husband is, he did a darn good job with some rope and outdoor carpet.

He actually used the tube that the carpet came in to attach the rope.

Stapling on the carpet.

And here it is in all it's glory (and not so bad looking if I do say so myself).

We put it in the corner so it wouldn't glaringly stand out and the rope blends in quite nicely (note that is not the  color carpet that Ryan told me he was going to buy but it will have to do).

So, does Leo use it? Indeed he does.

(He's actually asleep on it in this picture which is pretty funny).
The jury is still out whether or not he's also using our lovely furniture but for now, he stays. ;)

Monday, October 22, 2012

She's WHAT!?!

First off, my new book came in and it's prettttty exciting. I'm pretty sure I'm going to be excellent at carpentry #boldfacedlie. 

Second off, in some rather disturbing news, I took "Bella" to the vet on Thursday only to find out that our baby girl is actually a baby boy, sigh. So, his new name is Leo. After my initial reaction "!%^@*A#%#*!", we're now embracing his new found gender.

Clearly very masculine ;)
Now that I got those two things off my chest, we had a productive weekend in the Aires household. I studied/complained about studying for two days straight and Ryan re-pointed the brick in the kitchen.



Action Shot

It looks SO much better and we'll be able to put in the radiator now (which we bought about eight months ago and had been sitting in our family room, then it was sitting in our kitchen, and now it's back to sitting in our family room).

 Our last mini update was our upgrades of the exterior light and mailbox. My sister bought me a new mailbox and once that was installed I knew I needed a new light to make it shine ;)


After! (Feel free to ignore the white light bulb that I later replaced)


So, it looks like I still need to clean these stairs but we had to start somewhere :)

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Conquering the world...

Or just those pesky house projects ;) Sometimes, I think it's too easy to order things on Amazon (and then I beg forgiveness to the Amazon Gods for speaking such blasphemy).

Anyway, I just ordered this book...

Ana White
I couldn't be more excited. I'm already dreaming of all the beautiful furniture I can make (or in reality that Ryan can "help" me make). And, as if it's fate, I'm in finals which means the next few weekends I won't be in finals- ah, the joy. Hopefully this book won't turn in to just another coffee table book...

Monday, October 8, 2012


Sorry for the blog hiatus, we've been all over the place and not doing as much work on the house. I'm hoping that changes since I put the heat on today and we still don't have the kitchen radiator in... This weekend Ryan was away so I worked on a few projects. I started organizing the office which is quite the project  so, to make myself feel like I actually accomplished something, I jumped on the EAT sign trend :) A few weeks  months ago I ordered white letters from Amazon and decided to use some leftover fabric to add some color and bring more blue in to the kitchen.


Note to self: trace the letters on the opposite side of the fabric

Fun with modge podge

I'm actually going to hang them on the brick but Ryan has to finish re-pointing it first... so, for now they're just hanging out.

I also hung up some of our engagement pictures (now that I have to go through our wedding pictures and order some of those).

Coming together...

And I fancied up our china cabinet ;)

We'll see if I can keep the plant alive.

Our last bit of exciting news is that we have a new member of the family. Meet Bella :)

I love three day weekends.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

New Couch!

So, it was a rather exciting weekend in the Aires household because Friday, our new couch and chairs arrived! Of course that left us with the issue of trying to find a home for our old, beat up couch but that is besides the point because our family room now looks like this:

Of course the radiator needs to be moved...

The furniture really brightens up the room and I lovvvvvvvvve it. Now that the wedding is over hopefully our house projects will take more of a priority like re-upholstering the ottoman and finding a new coffee table but for now, I'm just enjoying a couch that is actually comfortable. As for our our old couch, it did eventually find a new home down the street after 4 days of practically begging people to take it (this involved craiglist, our listserv as well as a FREE sign with the couch out front). Ironically, once it FINALLY found a home ten minutes later 2 boys came knocking on our door looking for it... when it rains it pours.