Wednesday, 2 October 2013

The Lust List: Adoption Edition

There's a bunch of updates that have been happening around here (namely in the nursery) So I should have updates this week and next (woot woot!) In the mean time - until I can get my act together to take pictures - and finish up. I'll share some adoption related goodies. There's been many things I've been lusting after regarding the child we should be adopting (hopefully) soon. I was able to work through some of that building our registry on the Baby List site - it's pretty freakin' awesome) You should check it out, it's a great way to have your registry central to one spot, and you can register places like Etsy & Chapters (score!) Anyway! Here's some things I'm lusting after...

I Heart Adoption Shirt (4T), Adoptions Gifts, Adoption T-Shirts, Birth Mother Gifts, Toddler Adoption T-Shirts

A super cute shirt on a super cute little model. I like that this is an embroidered shirt, versus the screen print.

Adoption World Map Customized Love Map  -  12x18  Silhouette Art Print     Features any colors and countries

I love this map, doesn't really apply to us this time around, but I'll be keeping it in mind for when we do our international adoption.

11"x14" archival print of 'Adoption'- limited edition of 100

I love this cute little elephant print, but unfortunately it's no longer available. (sad face) It was produced in limited quantities to help a family, so I guess I missed the  boat.

Worth the Wait - Adorable Baby Bodysuit or Toddler Tees - Perfect for New Babies or Adoptions

This cute onesie isn't really adoption specific, because any baby is worth the wait; but I definitely think it speaks to those families that have been trying and trying for a child, and finally were given that gift. Or to those who have had to wait years for their adoptions to go through, or meet their child.

Chosen (Adoption Necklace)

I think this chosen necklace (also a fundraiser) would be a great gotcha day or happy court gift for a child. Take the little pearl off and it'd even work for a boy.

Yet another cute shirt on another cute model.

I think this shirt is hilarious! I feel like it would probably be lost on a lot of people, but it would be a great conversation starter. There are a TON of other great shirts on this site as well, and the greatest this is that every single one of them goes towards helping a family cover their costs of an international adoption.

This shirt says, "Change the World for One." I love it - the model helps. This is from the company "Ordinary Hero" and they also have a number of different shirts (as well as other products) that help adoptive families. They are specific to Africa, but through their help you could potentially take your needed trips there for free. They also do a lot of work with African orphans that are over there, such a fantastic company.

Friday, 23 August 2013

Adoption Journey : Final Assessment

We're getting closer to filling in the dotted lines...

We finally had our final assessment after three re-schedules, and we were more than looking forward to getting it over with. While we love working on the house, having to cram a ton of large and time consuming projects into the span of a weeks is physically and emotionally draining. (But totally worth it) This assessment was the relationship interview, as well as our final house check. Thankfully we passed the house inspection and we're good to go on that front. She said she like the way the nursery looked with the floor and paint, and thankfully it didn't matter that things like the baseboard weren't done yet.
   The interviews started with her asking us why we liked the other person. It's fun to say why you love someone with them there, and it's even more fun to have someone say why they love you. Things got a little awkward when she started talking about our sex life and what we're going to wear in the house when the kids are there? Umm clothes? Not really sure why it matters what we're going to sleep in, and what we're going to walk around in, but hey, whatever floats your boat right? (I understand why it matters if you're fostering an older child, but since we're planning on taking in an infant...) When she had to ask us about our sex life, if it wasn't so hilarious how business like she was, it would've been awkward. "How many times do you have sex a week?" "How do you react Jason, if Rebecca says No to you?" "What about if Jason says no to you?" Jason's a guy, so lets be honest here, I can count on half of one hand how many times that's happened haha. I only half understood why questions like that were important. She asked us what we were most looking forward to about being parents, and what we thought would be the hardest part, or what we weren't looking forward to. Jason said, "Discipline, I know I'm going to suck at it." Haha, I think he'll be better than he gives himself credit, but we both know I'm totally going to be the "bad guy". I'm looking forward to the first time you get to see the morals and values you've instilled in them in action without prompting.
   We talked about what strengths we have that would make us good parents, and what activities we plan to do with the kids. Going for hikes and walks was the first thing we both said, as well as a bunch of other things, like reading and music and sports. Then she told us to do the hardest thing, sell our selves, and not be modest. It's hard to list all the things you're good at and not sound like a pompous prick haha.
   Now that the assessments are all done, she has to write up this massive report on us that has to be approved by about 1000 people (ok so 3) as well as us, and we'll be placed with an adoption worker in that time. Once we sign off on our home study report the sitting around and waiting for a phone call will commence. We are super excited to be so close now to getting a child in our home. I know compared to a lot of people we haven't been waiting long on the trying to have/get a baby train, but 2.5 years is plenty long when your biggest dream is just out of reach. Hopefully it won't take long, and we can welcome a little baby who needs a good home into ours, because we're missing someone from this picture...

(this is seriously the only "family" picture we have...we need a better one)

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Feelin' Like a Redneck

Jason has been talking about cleaning out the garage, for almost as long as we've lived in the house. It has been piled to the brink with crap since the day we closed and began ripping apart our house.

Umm, yeah, I think it's safe to say that even the most expert of parkers couldn't get their car up in there. (those garbage bags aren't garbage - promise - they're fill of various small debris) In all honesty, I wasn't really too concerned about cleaning out this room, obviously it needed to be done, but it wasn't high on my priority list. Even in a world where it is all cleaned out and able to house a car, we wouldn't be parking in there. It's just a dirt (very uneven) floor, with mad tire grooves, the door doesn't work worth a damn, and it kind of smells pretty bad in there. Plus, it's just easier to go out the front door to get to our vehicles. So after a year of talking about cleaning it out, you can imagine how surprised I was one day when I came home to this...

Sorry for the terrible picture it was taken through the upstairs window, screen and all. My initial thought when pulling in the driveway was, "holy cow, we're hosting red-neck squatters." Then I remembered that no, we are in fact the red-necks that call this place home, and I thought, "We're pretty awesome for being able to shove all that crap in that little garage. That's a 27ft trailer FULL of house hold debris. Are you as big of a fan of Jason's creative "tarps" as I am? Yes those are carpets, how many times do I have to say it, we're red-necks. The other two piles were wood to be burned (which also (almost) filled the trailer), and scrap metal. He even got rid of everything (except the scrap metal - because we knew we'd get more off the roof). So after he got everything cleaned out, which surprisingly didn't take him and his dad too long, this is what the place looked like.

Anyone looking for a length of counter that has a sink? All that plywood was for the roof, so the pile is only about a quarter that size now. Favourite find from cleaning out the garage, was a badminton set that wasn't ours, made me want to break it out and show off my mad skillz from my high school days. As for what we're planning on doing with the space now, as long as it doesn't look as bad as it did before I think we're golden. I do want to bring one of the cabinet things we have in the basement out there to house all the gardening/lawn care stuff, so we don't have to go hunting for things every time we need to do something.
      What about you guys, did anyone else get any garage clean up done lately? Do you have one of those garages where you're embarrassed to open the door, or do you actually use the garage for its intended purpose of parking your car?

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

New Floors in the Nursery

I'm a little overdue for this post, so, sorry. But there's floor down in the nursery now! And it looks really good! It's the same floor as in the dining room, but it looks so different in the nursery - you know, different lighting and such. Jason, Eric and I banged it all out in a few hours, and then my glutes and hammies hurt for three days. As a reminder we painted the walls and the ceiling in Behr's "Gentle Rain", colour matched to Dulux Xpert paint. And by we, I mean me, because Jason wouldn't have anything to do with it haha.

This is probably the closets representation of colour, it's a great warm grey and it works well with the South facing room. We've since changed out all the outlets and put in nice new grate covers, and all the base and trim should hopefully be going on this weekend, then it'll actually be finished, and just needing to be decorating. This room has come along the quickest, and I can't wait to start the decorating process.

The closet has also since changed appearance. I can't wait to get goin' on the reading nook, and closet organizer and start putting the three totes of baby clothes I've managed to amass over the years. I shared this sneak peak on Instagram of what the closet colour will be.

It's called Thermal Spring, by Sherwin Willaims. It's a pretty great teal colour, all dark and moody, it looks sweet in the closet, and I totally want to curl up in there with a book - too uncomfortable currently though. The room is coming together nicely, I'll update pictures of the trim and closet as soon as I can.

Thursday, 11 July 2013

And The Walls Came Tumbling Down!

Do you remember when I mentioned a little while ago that we were planning on making the closet in the blue room/nursery bigger?  Well guess what I came home to on Tuesday?

A giant mess! I was torn between exasperation about the mess, and excitement that the closet is now bigger. There was this giant, naily, dusty mess in the hall and bedroom - I almost broke my neck climbing over it to get this picture haha - plus drywall dust foot prints all over the nice new kitchen floor. It was a little overwhelming, but the early stages of a demo project usually are.
    Jason did clean up his mess after he got home - he took the windows out, and threw everything out the gaping window less holes into the backyard haha. He had to build a header on the left hand side, and he put up some drywall and attempted to slap some tape & mud up. Now it's looking a little less overwhelming, and a little more like a closet.

I say he attempted to mud, because the mud was like soup. Because our air conditioner decided to crap out during the most humid and rainy weeks our basement was super damp and warm, apparently the bucket 'o' mud thought it was its job to act as a dehumidifier and suck up all the moisture in the air. So Jason was essentially trying to make the tape stay up with mushroom soup. Now that the weather has decided to back away a bit from Hades, and be a bit more reasonable, we're hoping the mud will thicken back up a bit, making like a bit easier.
   We still have to close off the old opening of the linen closet from the hallway, as well as a number of patches here and there, but Jason is motoring right along, and he tells me I should be able to paint by this weekend. We knew we wanted a light, warmer toned gray, something subtle so we could have fun with accents and accessories. We landed on "Gentle Rain" by Behr.

I really like the swatch, so I'm hoping it translates well to the walls. We need to get the paint up asap, so we can put the floor down and have it actually look like a bedroom for our final visit. (two weeks, yikes)

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Brain Dump

We've been working on a bunch of little things, unglamorous things, mostly un-fun things haha in order to make short work for ourselves when we finish the nursery. Jason picked up some spackle, and filled all the holes in there, then proceeded to go around the rest of the house slapping spackle on everything, which means I now have to repaint pretty much every room in the house :S  Then he lost the spackle, can't find it for the life of him which is unfortunate, because there's a few holes that were bigger and could use another go 'round with it. We cleared out all the trim, and doors and everything that we took out of the blue room and shoved in the beige room because it close - so now it's possible for someone to actually sleep in the guest room again. We took a desk, all the baseboard and trim, along with about 1/3 of the door collection we've slowly been amassing to Habitat, and they only took one door and the trim! We were a little annoyed because there was nothing wrong with anything else, but apparently they won't sell them. So far our donation count with this house is pretty low, we either can't seem to salvage it, or they don't want it...I think we'll take the hint. We found a great door there, we need a new front door, so we always check to see what they have, this was was exactly what we were looking for, but alas, too short. Our front door is an odd size, so we're pretty sure we're going to have to cut it to fit no matter what we get, but it's a little harder to make it grow.

   But we've got rooms cleared out, and the house is actually starting to look like a home more and more, I'm painting the nursery today and tomorrow, and we plan to get the floor done in there this weekend. We also put in our base and trim order, so we should be slap those up in the dining room and kitchen this weekend as well. I'm excited for that step, because I know it'll make a huge difference. This time around I feel more confident that our social worker will approve of our
 house and not have to do any more updates before we're approved. (Here's hoping) Two weeks until our final assessment, we can't wait! Projects should start to get a bit more exciting now.

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Inspired By : Art

Now that the dining room is all painted and (mostly) looking pretty my thoughts have been drawn to how to fill up the picture ledge. A lot of the what will be going up will be pictures of us, and family and friends, but I do want one or two great pieces of art to go up in there, so I've been having fun looking at all sorts of different great pieces that I can make (or someone who is infinitely more talented than I) So without further ado some great art inspiration.

Nocturne: Woodland - Original Oil Painting in deep blues and fresh summery greens (37.5x21.5 cm - app. 14.8x8.5 in)
I love me a great pallet knife painting. The colours in this one blend so fantastically together. I want it. Who wants to make me one hehe.

I love watercolours, they're probably one of my favourite mediums. This Samantha Sano one is gorgeous.

I love this painting by Paul Kasmin, because it looks so simple, but I can imagine it was very difficult to do.

Watercolour by Jean Haines
I love pretty much anything by Jean Haines, but I think this owl is my favourite. He's even got some purple in his wings, so he'd totally fit in hehe.

Inspirational Life Quote Print, Retro Poster A3, Handwritten Typography Vintage Print, Black White Wall Art Decor, The Best Is Yet To Come
And no art wall of mine would be complete without some sort of quote art. I love great typography, plus this would be pretty easy to DIY...come to think of it, I just might have to.

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Bye Bye Blue Room

The room in the back corner of the house that has been destined to be the nursery since we moved in has been known to all as the blue room. Because it had a heinous blue carpet. Here's what it looked like on our final walk through (sorry for the craptastic dark, grainy cell phone picture)

That's what it looked like when we moved in, and that's what it's looked like since; although it has been kind enough to allow copious amounts of junk to squat in there over this past year and a half. As well as being our dumping ground, Kai used it as a literal dumping ground when she was sick. Blegh! So this room was in dire need of some lovin' before we could move a child into it. Those lacy granny curtains had to go, so did the stained blue carpet.

So, this weekend, while Jason (and Mitch) was doing so plumbing on Mitch & Miche's house they're building, us girls got down and dirty in the blue room. The boys enjoyed our innuendo breakdown of how we ripped that sucker out and got the room prepped. It was sweaty, and dirty, but it took us hardly any time at all to go from that, to this...

To this...

Yeah baby! It only took us about 45min to get the carpet out, all the tack strips up, the base & quarter round up, and all the staples up. And we got a great workout in haha. It was all the original baseboard and trim in there, and man oh man, were some of them stuck on the wall. They were attached with the biggest finishing nails I've ever seen! Some of the little pieces could only be coaxed off with some choice words.

The closet we're planning on making bigger (adding a little reading nook in there), so that's what the tape is up there for, to how big the opening will be. We're closing of the linen closet in the hallway to accommodate the larger closet. Our reasoning behind doing that, is we can't do anything to this room to make it bigger (it's not particularly small at 10' x 11'6", but it's not large) we would maximize the closet space, and make it much more functional to perhaps keep a dresser out of the room, allowing for a larger bed down the road. Also, we don't use the linen closet now (since we also have one in our bedroom), and we plan on adding a built-in to the bathroom when we get to renovating it, so anything we will need to store down the line will be housed in that.

So yay! Bigger closet in there, with a space where our avid little reader can go to chill out. (I used to love reading in my closet, or in the little nook that was just outside my bedroom door when I was little) I couldn't get this closet door off for some reason, I struggled with the other one when we were ripping up the carpet, and it fell on me, but this one just wouldn't give. So Jason has to remove that as well as the old baseboard heater unit, and I apparently missed some door trim haha, so that'll have to come down. But it's basically just take that boarder down, and spackle a few nail holes then we're good to paint. Can you see the swatches up there...I think I've got it narrowed down to four colours.

So, huzzah! Although now it seems rather hospital with the dated white floors and white walls, and the question was asked, is it still the blue room now that there's no blue? Probably, I mean the Lion King room was always the Lion King room. My sister and I will hopefully get the wallpaper down before Wednesday, and if I hurry up and make a paint colour decision, I can paint and we could potentially be ready to install the floors by the weekend.

Monday, 17 June 2013

Listy McGhee

Since our last assessment got pushed back yet again (this time it wasn't our fault) we have more time to get rooms actually finished. (Well at least get finishes done, even if the rooms won't be completely done.) So I did what comes naturally for a crazy person, and wrote out about 6 different lists of what we have to do before that time. So here's the list of what we're hoping going to get done by July 21.

o   Clean out
o   Rip up carpet
o   Remove wallpaper
o   Paint
o   Install floor
o   Cut out bigger closet
o   Make closet doors
o   Get dresser for change table
o   Upholster chair

o   3rd coat of paint
o   get picture ledge up and painted
o   picture moulds
o   base/window and door casing
o   pick up buffet
o   get electrical sorted out
o   Install Octa
o   Finish hutch project

o   Case and base
o   Make sure all outlets and switches are in working order
o   Mud holes
o   Touch up paint
o   Bottle storage shelf
o   Coffee/tea shelf
o   Open shelving by stove
o   Finish toe kick
o   Counters on peninsula cabinets

o   Tidy
o   Remove  electrical wires
o   Cut out “step”
o   Organize closet

  (how is it I still have no pictures of our living room?!)
o   Get rid of shower
o   Take out built-in
o   Move TV
o   Get rid of couches
o   Bring brown couch over
o   Put switches at doors
o   Organize
o   Pick up chest for shoe storage

o   Finish painting hall
o   Base in bath
o   Shelf in bath
o   Curtains (dye & install)
o   Paint closet
o   Install closet organizer
o   Put up canvas in bathroom
o   Art in hallway

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Nursery Mood Board: Gold Glam

It's been a while since I posted a nursery mood board, and the last one that went up while being gender neutral, was still leaning more towards the masculine way of life. What can I say, that's how I roll, I'm not a girly girl. That being said, coming up with this super girly room was rather fun. The thing I encountered most with a "gold glam" nursery was the price of things. Holy Camoly can you pay a lot of money for certain things. (Which I guess is true for anything you do, it just seemed to crop up more with this board) So without further ado, here's my take on a glamorous girly nursery.

1. The colour is called Rainstorm and it's by Sherwin Williams, and I think it's what makes this room more palatable for me, because I'm really not a fan of pink. It's moody, and cozy, but with the pink and gold accents it's still girly.

2. An inexpensive "gold" pendant overhead light.

3. An accent wall with some randomized gold dots.

4. So they'll always know what letter their name starts with. Leave it as is, or spray it gold, or pink, or another fun colour.

5. A great gold foil message for the baby to learn.

6. Some sparkly hangers to display special things. Another simple DIY involving some gold (or any colour) sparkles or sequins, and some pant hangers.

7. Another message baby should learn. These could also be DIYed with gold paint, or gold leaf.

8. I love the Stella floor lamp, she's got vintage lines to her, but she's still modern enough to fit into this glam room. Plus she comes in a bunch of different colours, so she'd fit in many different spaces.

9. Because a gray elephant isn't cool enough, spray mama and baby in pink, and dip them in gold! This would be a super cheap and easy DIY, there's all sorts of animal toy DIY's out there.

10. A little floating shelf is great if you're short on space and have a ton of stuff to hold. Which lets face it, when it comes to babies, there's tons of stuff.

11. I've loved ampersands ever since grade 1, when I learned the word. So pass on the love with this little gold leafed one. Or if you're more into letters, they've got the whole alphabet there too.

12. Cute little cast iron golden birdy. Doesn't serve a purpose, but is pretty cute.

13. I love this gold faceted table lamp. It would work in a multitude of different rooms.

14. Nothing says glamorous like a mirror where you can narcissisticly check yourself 100 times before breakfast, so why not slap some on a dresser? While I'm not inclined to pay the outlandishly high price of the one from Pottery Barn, I'm not opposed to toning it down, and doing a DIY version, where you only mirror the front.

15. A simple white slipper chair is a neutral base to build some of the girlier accents off of, and is something that can grow up and be a reading chair in her room later in life.

16. Speaking of some girlier accents, a velvety pink round, a soft lace edged, and a subtle gold leaf are all good pillow options.

17. Some glitter garland strung above the crib announces this is where the princess sleeps.

18. This pink rug is made from recycled materials, and since there's a bit of white, and blue in it, it's not going to compete with the wall colour.

19. Lay to rest on some gold polka dotted bed sheets.

20. A lovely quilt with some hot pink bands.

21. After a long hard day of pooping and crying baby wants to rest her head in a modern white crib.

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Kitchen Files: Floor Beneath Our Feet

There's been some changes taking place in the kitchen as of late. Some small, small that make a huge difference, and some that are so monumental they're life changing. (Seriously I'm not exaggerating.) When you've lived without a proper kitchen for as long as we did any updates you do are touted as the greatest thing since sliced bread. It still makes me giddy to turn the lights on in there! Our final assessment was set for last Thursday so we were working our tail feathers off (we much rather would've been shakin' them) to get the kitchen floor in before then (as well as a few other smaller things). We finally got everything finished at about 1:30am Wednesday night (or Thursday morning if you will), and fell into bed without showering, and barely getting changed. Then before I even closed my eyes, it seemed like the alarm was going off, and we had to get up to finish tidying and a bunch of other things we were too tired to do the night before. Before we were able to get out of bed our social worker called to cancel the appointment because she was sick. I was annoyed for all of 30 seconds, because it meant we got to go back to sleep, and we honestly probably weren't ready for her to come anyway haha.

Anywho, we're glad she didn't cancel until the morning of, because we needed the meeting looming over our head to finish up the floor...

Tada! It looks great! We love it, when we first started we weren't sure if we really liked it, but the more that went down, the more we liked it. Which is a good thing, because this floor was a biotch to put down. It. Took. For. Ever! You had to flash the floor, and flash the tiles, then wait about a half hour for them to set before sticking them down. And the floor dried quicker, so it was a while before a good rhythm was figured out.

A gratuitous detail shot. And no, I couldn't have dusted the floor before hand, because I already have about 6 times. There's a lot of glue on the edges of the tiles (which is most of what you see here) that we're going to have to thumb off before we poly-seal it. (which is probably going to take a week because it's such a tedious job) Jason wasn't the neatest of gluers, but he put in a ton of hours on the new floor, so I can't complain.

Another update we did, that doesn't really change the look of the room much, but makes it a whole lot more functional came in the form of counters.

They still kind of look like ply-wood, but if you look closer, they're really...

Peel and stick tiles from the dollar store! Because we are having to post-pone our lovely quartz counter install due to a pesky leaky roof, I had to improvise. I wanted something wipeable, because I was tired of sweeping the counters. Yeah, sweeping, and we don't have a little hand held one, gotta get the ancient bristle broom up in there. Pain. In. The. Neck. (literally) So while this little counter update may not change the look of the room, it's umpteen times more functional, because no I can actually wipe up spills. Hoorrah!

So, like the dining room, it's still a ways a way from being finished, but it's much closer. Next step is some base and case and hole patching as well as some paint touch-ups. Plus organize and unpack all our kitchen stuff we still have downstairs.

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Walkin' On Sunshine

And it sure feels good! (I have had this post sitting in the draft pile for close to a month, because I hadn't got around to taking pictures...I suck, I know. I'm sorry.)
The floor we put down really is like walking on sunshine! It looks fan-freakin-tastic! And it feels pretty fantastic under your feet. We've been living with the subfloor in there (and the kitchen) for almost a year. Not that you could really call it "living with" since I can count on one hand the amount of times we've even entered the dining room over this past year. Our friend Mitch came over to help us lay it, and he's such a rock star that it only took he and Jason three hours.

We put in an engineered hardwood that had to be brad nailed down, so I was planning for most of one day to put it in, thankfully that wasn't the case. Mostly because Mitch is a rock star, and can bang stuff out in no time, seriously if you're looking for someone to make your house a little prettier he's your man.

Hooray, so pretty! Then since I was a slacker and didn't paint before the floor went down, the room  still wasn't ready, so I had to paint. I love putting new floors down, they can totally and completely change the look of the room. So can paint though...take a look at this bad boy all painted up!

The hutch won't be staying like this, it's going to get a makeover.

Woot woot! It's a far cry from done, but it actually looks like a room now, instead of a dusty hell hole, so I'll take it. The colour looks great with the floor (I still have to do a third coat to even out a few places) and once we put up the base & case and install the picture ledge it'll look even better. We also took off the awning that was over the window about a month ago, and it's crazy how much more light it lets in the room. I'm so glad I finally painted, it's been like a year since I bought the paint, I've taken it to get shaken no less than three times since buying it with the intention to paint, haha. Moving the table in there just proved to me that it's too small for the space, it'll live in there though until we can find a table we like enough to buy, or get around to making one ourselves. But the room looks fantastic, even better than I was picturing.