We call our backyard a “party yard.” But that’s a bit of a lie, because we’ve had very few parties there (read: none). We have ample space and a large covered deck. However, it’s a bit dumpy and the deck is a blank slate – especially now that we sold our furniture (thanks Facebook Marketplace!). After a summer of zero parties, we decided that we wanted to (mostly) furnish the deck by Brian’s birthday (September 15).
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After a months-long break, we’re back. We’ve done a few things since our last post: we removed the world’s strongest clotheslines from our backyard, did some major spring cleaning in our backyard, and (somewhat) planned the entire future layout of our house. In between, we trained and ran our first marathon, so no blog posts for you, our few devoted readers. 😉 Now that our days of endless running are over (for now), we decided to refinish and reupholster our dining room table.
Our Oscar Party has become a tradition. We love movies. They’re our thing. Well, at least one of them. Since we see a lot of movies our Oscar party is a natural extension of things we love – our friends and movies.
Our party includes Oscar bingo and a prediction contest, of course. (Shout out to my coworker, Brian, who beat me at in our party’s predication contest. That’s actually the first time that’s happened! Maybe I should blame the Oscar producers…)
Before I start, let me just say that all that mouse poop I found in the ceiling a couple weeks ago had me slightly worried for a hot second this week. For a minute, I thought those jerks may have given me hantavirus. But good news, I’m alive and well and dragging Brian into doing more projects. 🙂
President’s Day weekend was the perfect time for another project! Up this time, updating the DIY dog and/or baby gates that the previous homeowners left with the house.
Now that we’re getting a bit more settled, it was time to decorate our mantel in our living room. Although we had a fireplace in our first house, we didn’t have a mantel.
We wanted to make sure it had balance, movement and tied in with the rest of the room.
Here’s how it went:
So far the projects in our new home have been easy (read: mainly just painting), but while Brian was out of town at a conference this week I started demolition on our biggest project: the basement.
I affectionately call the basement a dungeon. While it’s not quite an underground prison, it’s not the most inviting space (wood paneling and drop ceilings, ftw!). Currently, it’s framed out to include a recreation/family area, two bedrooms, storage room, laundry room, 3/4 bathroom, two cold storage pantries and other storage.
As I’ve mentioned in other posts, the lighting in our house is terrible. We have great window lighting, but the overhead lighting comes down to: track lighting or ceiling fans. We’re in desperate need of recessed lighting, but until then, the first project was swapping out a pair of ancient flush mounts in our family room.
If we learned anything from our last house — it’s that a new light can completely transform a room. These lights aren’t on that level, but they’re a big improvement on what was there previously.
Our kitchen paint job is the least dramatic of our recent updates. The previous homeowners chose a color called “Navajo Sand,” which although you can’t really tell from the images below, came off as almost an orange-brown. It had to go.
I really don’t like brown. Especially for wall colors. It’s SO boring, but again, we’re just working with what we’ve given right now. And as you can tell the previous homeowners LOVED THEM SOME BROWN.
As promised, we painted our family room and dining space gray too. Just like our living room. The results are a bit more dramatic in person, but you might not be able to tell in the photos 1) because the overhead lighting in our house is pretty awful right now and 2) I really need something better than an iPhone to take photos.
Anyway, here are the before. More beige! (Yuck.) You’ll notice how the previous owners painted the support beam dark brown. Why they’d call attention to a feature like that, I’ll never know.