Monday, March 29, 2010 fresh and so clean, clean

OK...this is a VERY OLD, VERY RETROSPECTIVE topic...but this is a short post detailing the steps I took to quickly re-finish our tub on the 2nd floor in order to make it "livable."  :)

We had a structurally sound tub with solid tile (gray as it may be), and modern (new in the last 20 years) plumbing.  We decided instead of going with a full bathroom tile re-spray for $1,700...we'd go with two cans of XIM "Tile Doc" epoxy tub spray, and a few hours of quasi-painstaking work.

The first step was to scrape all the old finish with a razor scraper to get off all the old, loose "re-finish."  There was more than one "handyman" at work in this house previously!  

Then I had to mask off everything I didn't want to "re-finish."  This included the shower/tub walls, as well as the fill spout, etc.  (Notice the nasty, old remnants of the 1970's peel & stick vinyl tiles??)

There is an un-photographed step between old and new...which wasn't very photgraphable.  I cleaned the old bathtub thoroughly and etched the surface with XIM bathtub surface etching acid.  This was a purple, mucky, time-consuming mess...but in the end hopefully an important step that will help the new finish bond well to the old!

Now was the moment of truth.  I started going to town with the spray can of "new" bathtub-in-a-can.  Much to my came out pretty well!!!  

Maybe hard to tell from the pictures...and sorry I don't have more, but our "new" old bathtub is now shiny and new!!!  Hello clean feeling after taking a shower!  :)  YAY!!!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Twins

Yesterday I got all political.  Today, I'm all thrifty! 

I might be losing my mind over good deals on cool chairs.  But!!!!  These beauties were: FREE.  Yes you read that right. Some mid-century modern gems at the bargain price of $FREE.99!!! 

Now...where do they go?

Hello boys!

Dining room perhaps???

We'll have to think on this on for a bit... And, speaking of the dining room, we're fooling around with some texture for the windows. 

This is just a mock-up:

More thinking required....

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

"Everybody should have some basic security when it comes to their health care."

I'm tired of people debating whether or not healthcare reform is a good thing. Sure, you may have a few arguments about a few line items and what they cover and whether or not they conflict with a certain Sunday morning belief you have---but look at the big picture. No law will ever suit everyone, but some can begin to suit most. 

Everyday babies are born with genetic diseases and everyday people get sick. Why should anyone have to debate whether or not to start a family or whether or not to help a loved one for fear that they’ll be in debt for the rest of their life because of it? Why should anyone risk losing everything they have to stay alive? 

I don’t have $500,000 to pay for medical bills and no one you know does either. Healthcare isn’t a luxury for those who can afford it, it’s a right of every citizen. If God forbid anyone I love gets sick and I can’t afford healthcare, I deserve to live in a country that will help me out ---and so do you. If you disagree, that’s fine, but here’s hoping you never get sick or face not being able to get coverage…because should that happen, you may find yourself wishing someone out there was willing to stick up for you. And guess what? Someone is. And he did yesterday. So be happy about that, if not for yourself, then for those less fortunate than you.

This bill isn't everything, but it's a good start.

I'm counting my blessings today, and among them: that I have a great job, excellent health insurance and a healthy family.  But I'm also sleeping a little easier knowing should that change, it'll be ok.

And while we're getting all political today, let me also just say, if you're willing to die for your country you should be able to be who you are and tell whoever you please.  

That's all.  :) Now I'll go back to talking about furniture and IKEA. 

Monday, March 22, 2010

Celebration Time

My birthday was Tuesday (Thank you Baby for the super sweet shout out) and on Saturday we invited a few of our friends over to celebrate with us.  Early into the weekend it seemed like the weather was just daring us to have a gathering.  The sun was shining and it was near 65 degrees; But by Saturday evening we had nearly 6 inches of snow on the ground!  However, that didn't stop our incredible friends from getting out in the cold and snow and joining us for what turned out to be a really great time --- and I couldn't be happier that they did!  It was the perfect way to celebrate another year and it just feels damn good to have our friends in our new home.

Need another reason to celebrate? Turns out, one of my oldest and dearest friends from high school lives right near our new house and after reconnecting at out 10 year reunion last summer, I was super thrilled to have her and her hubby join in on the fun.

Made my day.

But let's get one major thing out of the way first:

CostCo sells a 3lb brick of cream cheese.

I'm just saying.

And speaking of incredible things, I have to take this opportunity to thank my super awesome friends for not only gifting us with their presence, but also with some pretty cool gifts!

IKEA. Jack Bauer. The knife.

And a special thanks to everyone for keeping our "spirits" up...

Yes, that is a slap bracelet type Budweiser coolie/coozie/koozie (there is some debate in our household over the proper term), who even knew such a thing existed!?

Pizza! My favorite food on earth I'm pretty sure.  (Thanks Chip!)

And at a certian point in the evening, (LATE) what else can you do except break out the board games? We played a hilariously thrilling game of Pictionary. And in the most interesting showing of artistic talent, we give you : "Motion Sickness" by Natalie:

Huge laughs = Best. Gift. Ever.

And because I am feeling particularly lucky this week, a shot of the lucky bamboo Evan sent me....

And in a few little gifts to myself ....

New (old) dining room chairs, some mantle photography and yellow tulips (the best!)....

And last but not least, my craziest obsession to date.  And that is saying something.  I discovered this soap/lotion combo at Anthropologie almost 6 years ago, and fell in love with it.  It carries a pretty unreasonable price tag (as most things from Anthropologie do) so I told myself when I finally owned my own kitchen, I'd buy it to celebrate. Well naturally Anthropologie discontinued the line, but I was able to find it online and finally broke it out this weekend.  Its a little thing...but I just adore this combo! 

Totally worth the wait.

All in all--- a fantastic weekend and one of the best birthdays I can remember! So many things to celebrate and be thankful for!  Thanks again to all our friends for joining us!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Just wanted to say Happy Birthday to the love of my life Kelly!!  Ain't she pretty folks?!  :)

What's In A Name?

It's still us, but we're testing out a possible name change and new design...stay tuned.

Monday, March 15, 2010


Last weekend we ventured out for First Fridays and stumbled upon a fabulous little hamburger joint.  A local photog snapped our pic and well--- we're basically local celebrities!

What We're "Stalking About" This Week....

This week kicks off a new portion of our blog detailing what items we are stalking at estate sales, thrift shops, on Ebay, on Craigslist, on and of course as spring gets dangerously close---at garage sales! 


We love a good deal and this week we're hoping to find:
Eames Molded Armchairs.

If you spot them in'll let us know right??? 


When Irish Eyes Are Smiling...

We had a lot to smile about this past week/weekend.  And because we haven't done an update in some time, we have a lot to share.

The week began with Evan putting the finishing touches on the long awaited bathroom mirror and fixtures.  We found a great sized mirror on the cheap at Home Depot and Evan built the perfect frame around it so we could mount it to the wall and also allow for it to curve around the tile.  The light fixtures were a total score at IKEA for around $12 a piece--- not too bad! 

Alex also joined in on the fun by creating a time capsule drawing of a circus on the back of the mirror and "helping" to hang it up. 

The Before:

And After!

I am super excited about how this turned out!

Moving on....

So by now everyone knows that we love Craig and his List.  We decided early on that for every new purchase we made for the house we would try to buy something reclaimed or recycled.  Well.... we've bought a lot of new things and while we haven't matched every single purchase, we have found quite a few pieces and repurposed them in our home. 

Earlier in the week we found an $800 table at Crate & Barrel that was never really an option until we found a rather close cousin of it on The List.  We're still in search of the perfect chairs to go around it, but for now, 4 of our other purchases also appear alongside it...including an orange chair I picked up a few weeks back that I was pretty certain I would die without. 

If you or someone you know is holding her sister hostage---PLEASE LET ME KNOW!  :) I HAVE ROOM FOR BOTH!

Below, The $800 Crate & Barrel Table:

The table we found on Craigslist and scored for half the asking price...

Our $20 table getting cozy in our dining room with a plethora of other chairs we picked up for a great deal!

Raise your hand if you are in desperate need of some fabulous window treatments.  (We're raising.)

And speaking of orange...  A while back I had this crazy idea to bring orange into our house via the kitchen.  We found an old chandelier (one of our very first purchases) at Habitat Restore for $5.  We picked it up with plans to spray paint it for use somewhere and finally decided we could add a pop of color in the kitchen with this piece.  

And when we our Stendig Calendar arrived in the mail, we could hardly wait to see this piece--- a staple of modern designers and a regular at The Museum of Modern Art---make its debut in our very own kitchen.  And while we are still totally undecided on the wall color(s) for the kitchen, I couldn't wait any longer to see the fixture and the calendar up against a gray accent wall that we're currently flirting with...   

Evan hanging the tangerine dream at 2 a.m.! (Swoon!)

The "In Case You Forgot" Shots....

The new and much improved look...

We still need to figure out seating for the nook....but for now, we're loving this new space!

But we didn't stop there. 

The craziness continued to the backsplash where we have also been debating what in the world we could do there.  We've gone back and forth on  painting it, tiling it and pretty much ignoring it....but we think we may have found a unique solution....

I tend to think that most art can be a DIY project, and so a few weeks ago I began making some random pieces for throughout the house. I started framing different things that meant something to us and also looked pretty cool.  When I laid them all out on the counter to decide where they should go, I realized that they looked perfect right where they were and thus our a personalized backsplash was born. 

A quick look back...

And now....

We incorporated some orginal artwork---from left to right they are: a Charles Eames house bird on an orange and gray print (Thank you Google Images), a tea towel from Pier One with a reminder to "Live Green", the exact CL posting I clicked on and met the love of my life, our house number framed on Ray Eames fabric and last but not least "Orange Cheetah" by Alex.

What I love most about this project is that each frame is filled with something that is unique to us and the color combination really helps to unify the space. We're still deciding if we'll continue on with the green wall color we started with behind our open shelving or if we'll go with the crisp white and gray accents, but either way, we're loving the look that the kitchen is starting to take on.

On Saturday we kicked off the Irish celebration early with our very first neighborhood parade.  We invited a few of Alex's friends (and their parents) to join us and even though the weather wasn't great, we still had a nice walk up to the parade and the kids really enjoyed it. 

A little Irish Pride to get the weekend started (a housewarming gift from the fam)

Treat bags for the kiddos.

Alex debuting her new headband.

Ready to catch some flying candy at the parade!

Good Times!

And to wrap up the week we decided to embrace our access to public transportation (basically our front yard) and ride the MAX to dinner downtown.  

Now that's what I call convenient!

Waiting for the bus

All in all it was my favorite kind of weekend; one filled with good food, good fun and  good friends.  Oh, and not having to go very far for either. 

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