Tuesday, December 21, 2010

1 Year: The Living Room

Time flies!! This past Sunday was our 1 year move in date. I can hardly believe we are getting ready to celebrate our 2nd xmas in our house. Crazy!

I really wanted to document all the house changes that have occurred in the past year. It's safe to say we have definitely put our mark on things. While I had visions of having the entire house done in a year, it still surprises me how much we managed to do between the wedding planning and Eric's traveling. I have good hopes for the year to come.

I wanted to start on the outside of the house but with the cold, bleak winter, it was looking really dismal. However starting yesterday we have had a steady dusting of snow so perhaps I will have a nice winter picture for you later.

I am starting things off easy with a room you have already seen. Here is our living room circa December 2009.

This room has already had some improvement as we had all the floors redone before we moved in. In some of the other rooms to come, you will see how scratched they are!

We painted the room top to bottom and replaced the sconces. You can see all the pictures and recap in this previous post. Here's a brief 2-pic summary:

The room was really empty so we took all our random pieces of furniture and put them in! We even hung some pictures! Whether things will stay as they are is yet to be seen.

(Oh PS, I took this next set of pictures with my Nikon D40... I think they are a step up from the Canon point-and-shoot I normally use.)

This is the room as viewed from the hallway entry. The plant was birthday party tiki decor and lives on. I've moved it since this pic to the dining room where I think it's less in the way. The table and chairs were all we could fit in our condo (!!) but now is a good spot for plants to get some sun!

Here is our fireplace all decked out. I didn't realize we had so many orange decor items and frankly, I just left the Thanksgiving stuff up and added pinecones and stockings for xmas. I had hoped to knit us xmas stockings but that will have to be next year. Not sure if the framed picture will stay, I always envision a mirror over the fireplace. Is that just me? The fireplace does work but I think it would be neat to get an electric insert. Less stress, no mess!

Here's the room looking from the sun room (back of the house) to the front of the house. Taking pictures during the day makes a huge difference! The bar will eventually move to the dining room and perhaps someday we will have a nice sofa and coffee table in its place. The cherry blossoms are from our wedding. They will probably live in the sun room but for now that is where we have the xmas tree so in to this room they go.

I somehow didn't get a decent shot looking the opposite direction (front to back) but I did get this hutch in the corner. That wreath is the sister to the red one in our sun room. The picture is artwork done by a school teacher that we got at an auction - it is a famous scene in Rockport which is near where we got married. Most of the stuff on the hutch is leftover wedding items. I think I want the sun room to be the more beach-y room but this is what it is for now!

Even though our house is a colonial, I don't want this room to end up in that direction. I still want it to be modern and hip! (Is "hip" even a cool word anymore?) We are hoping to hang some curtains soon and then maybe adding some more white and silver accents will make it less colonial-ish. Oh, and this room is just DYING for crown moulding... don't you think???

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Monday, December 13, 2010

Sparkly and Fuzzy

After finishing knitting my shawl (hm, I guess it's still waiting for me to block it), I jumped in to my holiday crafting.

I try to craft little things for close family and friends each year. Last year I didn't do anything (that whole buying and moving in to a house thing) but year before I made really cute Korknisse and the year before that I crocheted snowflakes.

This year it's all about ornament covers!

This is a great way to use up all my yarn leftovers! I bought some plastic unbreakable ornaments from Ikea (silver-colored) and grabbed some Red Heart Holiday yarn from my stash. The above ornament I gave to my mom but I had a sudden idea to use up some other yarn I had in my stash for my sister's ornament...

Fun Fur! Yeah, don't be shy, you know you have some fun fur in your stash! My friends laughed when they saw what I was knitting and I wasn't sure it would come out as I hoped but in the end I think it was a success!

So far I have only knit 2 red ornaments and 1 fuzzy ornament... I better get moving. I might embellish with some ribbons or bells if I get a chance.

Are you doing any holiday crafting? Please share!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Sun Room Revisited

So how much did we get done with the house for my birthday? A ton! We hung pictures, arranged furniture, organized, and let's face it, stored a ton of stuff in the basement!

Not only did my mom surprise me by flying out from CA to visit, Eric surprised me with a really awesome tiki party! The house was totally transformed with a tiki hut, flip-flop lights, lanterns, and even a giant Homer Simpson cut out (in hula attire of course). We got a chance to show off our mostly redone house and reinforced the fact that our house is great for hosting parties. :-)

I am sure you really want to see what's up with the house though. As it gets closer to our 1 year move in date (Dec 19) I will start showing before and after of all the rooms we've done.

Surely you remember this horrible primed wall in our sun room:

We painted the wall and updated the sconces and it remained a blank canvas for almost a month. We had purchased some decorative shelves to put in the office but soon decided they would go much better on this wall. The shelves had come with a template that indicates where holes are to be drilled so after cutting them out and carefully measuring, leveling, and taping, Eric started to drill where the holes indicated.

Easy peasy right? NO! No project is ever that easy. We went to hang the shelves and the holes were off! The template did not match at all! Buyer beware on the decorate shelving from Michael's. We ended up having to drill more holes before hanging our shelves. However, the end result looks really great!

We decorated the shelves with what we had but soon it will be Christmas themed.

The buffet is from a consignment store down the street and has been sitting either in the garage or family room since it came home! We hope to refinish it some day but for now, it works! It also haphazardly holds our fine china.

The nutcrackers were part of the decor from my party - they are a hula guy and hula girl. They are from Target!

The shell vases and orchids were part of my gift from Eric. Long story short, we had shell vases and orchids at our wedding and they got accidentally taken home by our guests. Since then I have been hunting for the exact vases and even though I found them months later, I didn't order them. Good thing because Eric did and even ordered the orchids from the same place as before!

The tall vase on the right side was also used in our wedding though it was filled with origami cranes. It sat empty since I donated the cranes but we picked up the bamboo poles and fake grass from Target and now it looks really awesome! It also keeps people from getting too close to the shelf and knocking it down!

And the wreath...

The wreath was almost as popular as Hula Homer! Eric will tell you he spent hours whittling the wood to construct it but in reality, it is also from Target! I had my eye on this wreath for many months and when they finally went on sale, we bought two! (The other is in the living room.) We placed the shelves based on the wreath and hope to change it out seasonally.

So there you go, a really ugly wall turned all pretty!