Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Refreshed Laundry Room

If I really loved you, I would have styled these photos. As it is, I stopped mid-load and snapped some photos without even cleaning up. I call that "keeping it real." You might call it "lazy as hell." Either way, the place looks a heck of a lot better.


Cost breakdown:
Paint: $27 Glidden Paint & Primer, no bargain since it gave the baby hives
Detergent shelf: $15, Craigslist
South Shore art: $18 for frame, Amazon.com (poster I had)
Utility sink skirt: $17 ($2 thrifted fabric + $15 industrial strength velcro + hem tape I had)
Rug: $10, Urban Outfitters clearance
Baskets: $10/each (50% off from Joann's)
Folding Dry Rack: $30, Amazon.com
Hanging Dry Rack: $3, Amazon.com
Blue totes: $6/ea, Target

Total: $157

$7 over my budget of $150, not including sales tax on this crap. I'll run that up a little more if I can find pretty glass bottles for my soaps, and maybe a cuter garbage can, and a lil basket for stray socks. But not too shabby, budget-wise.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Bad Girl

Does this look like the face of a dog who would chew apart an entire door?

Yes. Yes it does.

And now the door looks like this:

Ask me again if we're keeping her.

Monday, January 23, 2012


Good news, bad news. The laundry room is painted (yay!) but since I cheaped out and didn't buy low-VOC paint, the baby has been covered in hives for two days (boo). 

Poor buster. The two have not been conclusively linked, but mama knows. Anyway I can't think of what else it would be. But, dang, I didn't even consider going to Ben Moore since A) it's just the laundry room, and B) the walls down there aren't in the greatest shape anyway. The previous owners just slapped paint on willy-nilly and called it a day. They painted AROUND pipes, people, and didn't even try to get behind the machines. But lesson learned: if it's in my house and it's getting painted, it's gotta be Aura or Natura

On the plus side, the room looks a million times better and the rest of the stuff for it should be coming any day now. Pics this week I think!

Meanwhile, enjoy a big bite of this:

It's this recipe, but with veggie stock instead of chicken. I took the first reviewer's advice and sauteed & roasted the veggies right along with the squash. Then I got all Martha-y and toasted the squash seeds to sprinkle on top, along with toasted breadcrumbs. It was DIVINE. 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Table Talk

This weekend, inspired by this...

... Josh turned this...

...into this.

After abandoning the idea of gold almost the second the paint hit the table (see crappy middle pic), I landed on a light gray-green from Behr called Silver Sage. Literally two days later I saw that top photo on an Apartment Therapy House Call, and I was sold. If that's not the identical color it sure is close. Plus, casters! Good idea! This table is about 2 inches too short anyway!

The search is on for silver casters with brakes, and I ordered 2 yards of fabric for the chairs. It's gonna be UHMAZING.

Top photo: Apartment Therapy

Doing the Laundry

Friends, I found a new way to put off the mammoth task of painting the kitchen! Hey, let's makeover the laundry room instead! But listen, I think we can makeover this entire room for a tiny sum. Like, under $150. Top to bottom. I KNOW. But trust.

Here's where we started. A room affectionately (not) known as The Laundry Dungeon.

Gray sloping concrete floors, bland off white walls, a card table propped up with wood blocks, crappy carpet remnant on the floor. Doesn't it make you want to run in there and do some washing? But it was functional and we had other things to worry about for a year and a half. The machines work at least. Josh and his dad put in a utility sink and we called it good enough.

Project 1: New Table
When we bought a new table on Craigslist, I thought I would just re-sell the old one. I bought it several years ago for $40 and figured I could get that money back. But then I had a better idea. I asked Josh to cut it down a little and attach it to the wall for a sturdy laundry folding table. I am so smart sometimes. One hour later, done and done.

Total: $0

Project 2: Art
While reorganizing the basement after Christmas, I stumbled onto 4 empty oversize black frames. I don't remember what used to be in them at the old house, but I thought they could probably be reemployed. Inspired by this image I pinned on Pinterest...

...I did this.

I found some large, free, hi-res, butterfly images online (try vintageprintable for free, out-of-copyright art, it's a goldmine). I printed them as large as I could (possibly at work) and cut them out one night while watching Adromeda Strain with Dylan (booooooooring!). Then I spray mounted them to some standard white posterboard and stuck them in the frames. Easy peasy.

Total: $5 for the posterboard, I had everything else.

Other stuff that is in prog:

$15 Craigslist table, for detergents 
DIY utility sink skirt
$10 Urban Outfitters Rug

Glidden Vintage Yellow
Sink skirt is mostly finished, thanks to some cute fabric I got at the thrifter for $1.50 on half price day yesterday. Score! Paint is purchased, I'm hoping get it on the wall next weekend. Still need a drying rack and a cheap frame for a pretty poster I had laying around. I think even with those purchases we'll still be underbudget. We'll see...

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

New Year, New Dog

Welcome the newest (temporary) addition to the family: Violet!

We're fostering this sweetie pie for Friends of Chicago Animal Care and Control, and she came to us Sunday from the shelter. Fostering is something I've been thinking about for a while, but I was hesitant because I knew it would be a lot of work. Just ask Josh how much fun it is to walk three dogs at once. But she really is a doll. She walks great on a leash (at least, when the other two dogs aren't there to distract her) and is a big cuddlebug. She's the softest little thing, and only weighs about 40 pounds. Aw, she's just a little girl! Her name was Passion but that's a terrible name so we re-christened her Violet. Doesn't it fit? Dylan wanted to call her Pirate but too bad.

She's still a puppy so she needs some training, potty-wise, and she loves to chew on EVERYTHING. But I think with a little work she'll make someone a great pet. Layla LOVES her, and even grumpy old Bear was caught snuggling with her on Liv's bed. Plus, when an aggressive dog went after her on the dog walk today, Bear intercepted him and took the brunt of it - until Layla stepped in an kicked some Mastiff ASS. Layla is a sweetheart to most dogs, but she also doesn't take any crap. Don't mess with her Bear or New Dog!

Other updates since we chatted last...

Computer - still dead
Laundry room - mini makeover in progress, pics to come
Picture wall - updated thanks to this site, pics to come
Table - not painted
Kitchen - ditto
Christmas - a success, minus a phone I bought Olivia on ebay which was apparently stolen and had to be returned after we couldn't activate it, and when the Verizon customer service chick tried to chide me for buying a phone on ebay I gave her a big earful of Why Verizon Sucks, namely that BOTH of the phones I bought for my kids last year broke within three months because they were utter garbage, hey good thing I signed another 2 year contract to get them! Stupid Verizon.
DRAMA! - still dramatic
Ginger Tea - undoing some holiday damage
Baby's Hair - still crazy