Sunday, April 29, 2012

Dinner guests

Nothing like knowing that 6 people are coming over for dinner to motivate us to get things done around here!  During this week, we grouted and hubby sealed the new bathroom floor.  Saturday, with only 2 trips to Lowe's, he reinstalled the toilet and installed the new vanity, sink, and faucet.  I ran to the store to get a new hand towel and was on clean up crew (sounding like a familiar position for me yet?).  We are quite proud of the finished product:

Friday after work, we headed back out to Meyer's greenhouse to get some more plants for the courtyard.  We picked up 2 purple encore azaleas (which are done blooming for the moment - sad), a knockout rose topiary, and some wave petunias and geraniums.  We got home and got to planting!  Mom and Dad stopped by to see bathroom progress, and Dad stepped in for the planting of the rose topiary, since I did it completely backwards (added way too much potting soil BEFORE putting in the gallon-size root ball... oops).  Mom oversaw hubby's placement and planting of the azaleas.

There's now a wave petunia where there used to be dead Johnny Jump Ups and grass...

The two azaleas flank the Carolina Jasmine, in the middle, complete with trellis (begonias to be added soon).

The knockout roses by the back door are just BEAUTIFUL!

Next to the back door is starting to grow in.  In looks a little strange right now, but my hope is that once everything is up (random plantings that our previous owner had done are springing up), I can fill in so that the whole area is completely full of flowers!

This is now what you see when you walk into the courtyard from the gate - the knockout rose topiary in the large green container (which is plastic but looks amazingly ceramic), a geranium in the smaller green container, and the tall planter has a geranium and wave petunias.  Winston is even headed toward the gate, which is where you will find him if he happens to be outside when you come visit!

So, Saturday, we literally cooked and cleaned all day.  Construction supplies got shoved in closets and brought upstairs (as in, stored in attic), everything got dusted, floors were cleaned, bathrooms were cleaned, kitchen was destroyed with cooking explosions and then cleaned up, kitchen cabinets were even cleaned!  By 6, I was exhausted, but it was so worth it.  It was awesome to have room for everyone to comfortably congregate in the kitchen...

And fill up the dining room...

And pose for pictures in front of the fireplace!

So, today, I'm actually thinking about spending some time sitting down, and hubby has requested a sleep-in day.  I think we deserve some good old R&R!  Welcome, lazy Sunday!!!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Powder room update!

So, lots has happened on the floor of the powder room!  Friday after work, we pulled up tack strips and staples and started fixing the holes in the wall that the new vanity will not, sadly, cover.  Saturday, hubby laid out the new underlayment.  So, instead of the thick backerboard, we have this thin, waterproof stuff that makes the floor more of a floating floor, helping to prevent cracking.  Unfortunately, it also requires "unmodified" mortar... and we, of course, had "modified" mortar.  So, while hubby headed back to Home Depot, I sanded down the walls and put up another coat of plaster.  I also did some work on the holly bushes on the side of the house - one had a lot of dead wood in it, and I tried to trim them up a bit... but the holly bushes really won the battle in the end, and I ended up with scratches all over my arms!

I got the difficult yet glamorous job of handing the tiles into the bathroom... Winston also thought he should help.  I think he was happy to get to stand back in his safe place.  I'm also pretty sure he thought he should be in a lap.

He got booted pretty quickly with no lap love and decided to take up residence on my lap....

The final product is starting to look pretty good!  We can't grout until tonight, and with the crummy weather, I'm not sure that will happen (grout gets mixed up outside, ya know).  But, we hope to have the final(ish) product ready for dinner company next Saturday!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Still down 1/2 bath :)

SO, after my attempt to wash down the walls and then hubby's super wash-down, we tried out our three shades:

The dark one on the left was pretty but a bit too dark.  The one on the far right looked a little purple in person.  The one in the middle, which hubby spotted on his new favorite blog, turned out to be our favorite.  It was the truest gray color.  After dinner Saturday, we had just enough time to run to Home Depot and pick up the paint... which meant hubby had time to paint the first coat last night and the second coat today!  WOO!

With the walls done, it was time to inspect the tiles and decide which to go with...

I love the shape of the rectangular tile, but hubby said it kind of looked like stained concrete... and now, every time I look at it, that's all I see.  We originally wanted to do slate, but it was super-thick tile, and that would have meant having to remove the subfloor.  I've had enough of that, thankyouverymuch, so we're going with the faux slate 6x6 tiles instead (in the corner... duh, the only other tiles in the picture).  Same pretty coloring, thinner tiles negate the need to tear out subfloor, and they will hopefully go in easily.  We're considering (hah, "we"... as if hubby would let me go near the tile saw while it's running) putting them in on the diagonal to add interest, since it's such a small space.  We're also using a new underlayment that is thin and way more flexible than cement board.  It's kind of expensive, but we're hoping it's worth it.
Oh, and Winston? So not a fan of this.  It's noisy, messing up the freedom to use the bedroom hallway... and that bathroom carpet was one of his favorite hideouts.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Down a half bath!

Happy Saturday! Hubby finished demo on our hall powder room this morning! We bought a new vanity, which is sitting on our entryway, and are reusing the toilet, which is now hanging out in the hall. We have 3 shades of grey paint to try out and 3 different tiles, although I already know one of them (the most expensive one, surprisingly) won't work after a second look at the vanity. So I just couldn't wait to share pics of the progress while he makes a dump run and I am supposedly washing the walls =)

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Hoppy Easter!!!

What a wonderful Easter we have had.  We are blessed to be able to host our family around an Easter table!

Mom surprised me last night with a beautiful bouquet - I pulled the tulips out for our table and used them instead of the candles.  The rest of the bouquet is in the great room - it's just beautiful!

Hubby and I spent two mornings working on Easter treats:

But besides stuffing ourselves with lots of yummy food and spending time with family, we have been busy bees.  Our snap dragons are all in bloom in front of the house!

So, remember that wet bar?

Well, it was torn out...

And put back together!  Hubby put in shelves he built himself and then painted the whole thing.  Thanks to a fan helping the drying process, ALL my craft and bulky cleaning supplies have a new home!!!

This week, hubby also put the last of the knobs on the cabinets.  We were going to go with some leftover knobs from Mom and Dad...

But, we realized that we liked our original knobs better!

We got new blinds for the bathroom, and I finally convinced hubby to put up the valance I made =)

And we also did some rearranging in the bedroom!

PHEW!  I am TIRED... and the sun is out and the wind is gently playing the chimezzzzzzz....

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Listen to the sound of the pouring rain...

I was worried this evening, on my run, that the rain might beat me home... but Mother Nature decided to be kind!  I was sitting on the floor of the great room, Winston dutifully "kissing" me while I stretched, and was in awe of the different scenes on two sides of our house.  Out the sliding glass doors, one might wonder why I ran so fast:

But out the kitchen window, you see a different story... and the reason for my panting =)

Sadly, my phone didn't really capture the true grey, ominous nature of the clouds.  One of these days, I might even have an update on something we accomplished around the house =)