Thursday, September 30, 2010

Kitchen Renovation

Let me begin with a brief synopsis about our house...  

What is now "our house" started out as Bryan's house...a single man buying his first home.  The items that a women might have as a requirement while house hunting or put on her "non negotiable" list…well they just never cross a man's mind.  As long as it has 4 walls, a roof and a yard to get dirty in, it's good enough for my man!  Needless to say the house needed a bit of TLC.  Lucky for me, I LOVE home renovations!!  Hubby does NOT love home renovations, but he tolerates it because he knows it makes me happy.  
True love I tell ya!

Here's a brief recap of a few small projects that have been tackled since moving in:
- Every wall in the house has been sanded and painted since they were all covered with high gloss paint...
- The ceilings were all scraped and smoothed to get rid of the popcorn
- Every closet door had a 70's accordion door which has been replaced with a regular door
- The dark wood mouldings throughout the house were all painted a nice clean shade of off-white.  This really helped lighten up the entire house since it's a bit smaller and doesn't get much natural light.

Now we move onto the bigger projects!  I figured I would start with the kitchen.
The kitchen has been a work in progress for a few months and we’re finally nearing the end!  (Or at least as far as we are going to go with the kitchen)  Here are a few pictures of what the kitchen looked like on move in day...

(sorry the quality isn't great...Bryan took most of the before pics)

 Kitchen sink area
Previous homeowner’s idea of a pantry

More ingenious storage ideas!  That’s a curtain covering the cabinets below, and not too sure about the S hooks above.

Dark Cabinets and OLD appliances
And Grey Dog as just a tiny puppy!!!

Our (very dusty) seating

The first thing we did is PAINT...and then painted some more.  The walls got a fresh coat of light green paint and we had the cabinets painted with a Benjamin Moore cream color.  We replaced the old appliances with shiny new stainless steel.  We also had our good friend Will, aka my carpenter, come in and do some fantastic built-in's for more storage and seating and to also close off the exposed cabinets!

Pretty painted cabinets with new shelves and appliances

So fresh and so clean!!

Good bye random hooks, hello pretty (and functional) shelves


We kept the counter tops because they were fairly new and in good condition.

My favorite part might be our built in bench seating with storage underneath!  The small cabinet to the right we use for pantry items and the shelves will be great for more storage.
I also adore our new table we picked up from World Market and my cute little bench I purchased from Craigslist for just $25!  I painted it to match the color of the cabinets and it works great!


The next step in the kitchen remodel was to tackle the floor!!  In case you didn't notice in previous pictures, it was a hideous peel and stick vinyl that was not put down even and peeling up in multiple places.  
It had to go!  

We decided to go with tile since the rest of the house has a laminate wood floor that we don't want to replace, and we don't have any matching floor left to finish the kitchen.  The first thing was to pull out the old floor...what we discovered was 4 LAYERS of old vinyl flooring!!!

I picked out a porcelain slate inspired tile I thought would go nicely with the stainless steel and the brown tones would compliment the wood floor.

Here we are in progress, before the grout.

In case you're wondering my living room turned into the storage room!

And here it is after the grout was added.  Grey Dog and I are admiring the finished work...and realizing that the green walls now bring out a green color in my slate tile!   UGH!!!

 Here's Bryan noticing the green as well...

Grey Dog didn't mind, he and his beaver seemed to enjoy the new tile!

Overall I really like the way it looks!  I think it makes the kitchen look MUCH cleaner and it transitions very well from the living room.  The green is a bit overwhelming however, so I think I need to paint the walls.  I'm leaning towards a light grey to try and bring out more of a grey tone rather than a green tone from the tile.  I'm open to ideas though!!

We still have a bit of work to do, but boy have we come a long way!!  I hope to soon have a finished product soon, so stay tuned!!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Summer Heat - 1 Kelly - 0

I lost the battle of the boots on Friday night. I made a valiant attempt at making them work but alas the heat of the never ending summer made me succumb to more light weight materials. None the less it was a fabulous night out with great friends!! (and I would add a picture but can’t seem to find my camera cord…bear with me, I’m still fresh on my blogging adventure!)

I also came to the conclusion on Saturday night that high heels are an evil fashion accessory that MUST have been created by a man!!


Sure they make you look tall and feel just a tad bit sexy, thus adding a hint of a strut to your walk…but is it really worth all the pain?!?! Especially for those of us with abnormally high arches! I decided to rock the heels on Saturday night (mistake #1) to a late afternoon wedding we were attending. And after ignoring my husband’s pleas (mistake #2) for me to switch into the flats I had stashed away in the car, I proceeded to keep them on as we headed downtown for yet another birthday party later that evening. Let’s just say I was later walking barefoot through the streets of downtown and have renewed my vow of staying loyal to my ever growing collection of adorable flats! After all, a girl can look chic and sexy in flats…like my friend Katherine here!


(I also adore the fact that she’s carrying a paint can in this picture, a girl after my own heart!)

The only downside = height. I can live without being tall…right????

Friday, September 24, 2010

Summer, summer GO AWAY!

Now, don't get me wrong, I love summer. The long days and warm nights. Grilling out, and the beach, and summer in a glass (I'll have to explain that some other time). But you see, I also love fall, winter and spring! I would also like to enjoy those seasons, and well frankly...I think summer has out stayed it's welcome this year!!

Yesterday was my 29th birthday (yikes!) which typically brings with it the first day of fall. Each year along with my excitement over celebrating my day of birth, I'm almost equally as excited to break out my fall clothes!! I usually have something saved up that was purchased towards the end of August as your patience for humid sweaty days grows shorter and your longing for cool crisp Autumn days grows stronger! (You know the kind of purchase I'm talking about. Some times they come in multiples.) Anywho, just like any other year, I have been saving up my newest pride and joy for next new hunter boots!!! Okay, now I know you're probably thinking, Kelly...really...rubber boots?!? But I have a little surprise...

BAM! Wouldn't have guessed fabulous equestrian boots huh!

Ok, maybe you know about Hunter's line of super chic leather boots, but I was like fat kid in a candy store the day these arrived (courtesy of Papa Murph) and have been aching to wear them ever since! So my super sweet hubby Bryan planned a little get together/birthday celebration with friends tonight with only minor encouragement from me...okay, okay I may have strongly encouraged him! I blame my mother for my overwhelming need to have birthdays be a large celebration. While her intentions were noble when we were children to give us lavish birthday celebrations, it only created an adult who longed for lavish birthday celebrations. Only problem is adults and lavish in the same sentence usually equals a much larger price tag!
Ahhh, I digress...

So we're headed out on the town tonight and my big plan was to debut THE BOOTS tonight!! Unfortunately this unrelenting summer heat will not go away and I fear I will look silly in 90 degree weather and tall leather boots. On the other hand though, I'm leaning towards the attitude of "I don't care" and the fact that the temperature tends to drop rather quickly along with the sun, so I might just run with it! We shall see...

So tonight we're headed out with friends which just kick starts our busy weekend. We also have a wedding to go to on Saturday and a TON of house work to do! Our house is a never ending project, which you will be privileged to hear all about if it's decided you can stand my random banter and keep following my blog! I'll leave with you with a few other fall items that I'm dying to sport once the heat surrenders!!

Warm colorful scarves

The oh so wonderful (and oh so forgiving) legging
Finally a coat that's warm enough and small enough to travel easily with me. I might just pop the collar as well like this cool chic does ;)

And finally...

Okay, so i don't have this last item in my possession...but I do really long for it...