Sunday, January 30, 2011

Happy Home-A-Versary!

This weekend we were super blessed by being occupied in the company of friends, good food, good fun and some healthy Nintendo Wii Just Dance Offs, that we just now realized it's our Home-A-Versary!  Yep, one year ago this weekend we made this house a home!   Hooray!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Save The Date!

It was a super fun and super long Saturday, but in the end this video was born! 

Check out the premier of our official Wedding Save The Date 

(actual dates & times have been ommitted thanks to some local attention we are receiving!) 

All photos taken by us & a few random strangers we encountered, with our Canon T2i and 28mm f/1.8 in and around KC.  Music: The Knife, Heartbeats.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

House Tour- First Floor

WARNING: This is and has been the longest blog-post-in-the-making. EVER.  Hope you like it!!

We started it back in September following a 2 week binge when we thought of and completed several little DIY projects around the house.  It took us so long to post it because every time we thought about doing it, we wanted to wait for just one last update here and there. 

We've been highlighting several projects in the last year or so.  Yes - it has been a year!  And in celebration of the past year, we are excited to invite you into our home (the first floor anyway)!  It's been quite a ride and while we are only just beginning several projects, we thought now was as good of a time as any, to finally give a virtual tour of our home and some of the hard work we have completed during this time.

And what about all those projects we have yet to share with the blogosphere?  Well, take note of anything you see that you hadn't seen before, because we'll be detailing them one by one in the coming weeks, as well as adding additional rooms to the tour with the Second Floor Virtual Tour and the beginning of our 3rd/guest floor renovation. 

For now, we welcome you to 26 East: The First Floor Virtual Tour:

The Entryway & Landing Zone


The view into the entryway and dining room from the living room. This photograph was taking on one of the many times we visited the house, prior to officially deciding to make it ours.  As Evan documented each room with multiple photos and a few videos (which we later obsessed over from afar, trying to determine any magic we could work), I sat at the dining room table trying to picture myself in this house and trying to decide if I was up for the challenge.

Don't mind our halloween decor in this pic.  It was left over from a baby shower we hosted.

(UPDATE: this room is now black! See below) 

Just one year later, the view from the living room is much brighter.  And although the actual front door is pictured to the right in the top photograph, 90% of our guests enter through the side doors, off the living room, so this is usually the first glance at our home.  We've added an area to drop belongings, such as hats, backpacks and keys and we've brightened up the space with a new front door that allows for a ton of natural light. Currently you can find a slew of muddy boots and snow covered caps in this area, so we're happy we took many of these shots back when it was warmer and therefore a lot less messy!

The Kitchen & Breakfast Nook


What can we say about the kitchen that we haven't already said before?  Not much.  It was gross, smelly and very outdated.  We jumped right in tackling project after project in the room that underwent the biggest and most labor-intensive makeover in the house. 


We always loved the amount of space we had to work with in this room, and although the original layout had a few less than perfect details, we kept much of the original concept in mind and added several of our own touches.  We have since removed the orange rug --- What was I thinking with that anyway???  :) You'll also notice the light fixture has changed.  Although we loved our $3 Habitat Restore chandelier that we spray-painted tangerine dream, it was no match for the Ikea Maskros  that really improved the look of the entire space.  And those shadows? Love!   Time for us to update these pictures....coming soon.



Pulling out the cabinets, peeling off wallpaper, chipping away at a tile back splash, removing old flooring down to the bare bones, building counter tops, refinishing an absurd amount of doors, cabinets and drawers and reconfiguring a puzzling layout of cabinetry, were just a few of the many tasks we jumped into before actually moving into the house.


As of today, we have really brightened up this space and devised a more practical layout of cabinets, added a center island that comes in handy for everything from dinner prep to party feasts, and of course completed one of our most favorite additions - the Boulevard Beer tap!

It is so silly to think that such a little space could provide so much satisfaction, but this little area of the kitchen does just that!  You may have noticed we get excited about some pretty strange stuff around here and this is no exception. We eventually plan to go more Euro with a lot more open shelving (in the very distant future), but back when we first got started, Evan picked up these shelves (our first IKEA purchase) and I drove him CRAZY to install then ASAP.  Even going so far as to get them up before the walls were officially painted (I WAS EXCITED!)



We (Evan) cut out two of the door panels and added glass for a clear view into the cabinet space which currently houses everything from drink ware and beverages to my Jonathan Adler butter dish and a painted ceramic dragon, courtesy of our resident artist. :)

The Dining Room, Wine Bar & Art Fun


This room had gobs of potential!  The second room I totally fell in love with and knew we could transform.  With great natural light and no awkward window placement, this was the easiest room to convert, by far!


With the addition of some pretty awesome finds on Craigslist (see: chairs, chairs & table) and an incredible new light fixture, this room was a piece of cake and it still ranks among my favorites.




The Living Room & Bar Area


Ah....the living room.  Truth be told this was one of the most promising rooms in the house at first glance. Even though it was so dark and had several outdated features (brass fireplace screen anyone?),  it was one of the rooms we knew right from the get-go we could totally revamp with some paint, an area rug and a little love for those sad little built-ins.


A much brighter and much more livable space.  We spend a good majority of our time in this room and with its two separate areas for dining and reality t.v. watching/relaxing, it's a great place for our friends and family to gather when they visit.  



It's amazing what a little paint and some fine craftsmanship can do!  Here we took out the existing shelves and created a more sturdy and purposeful built-in unit.  The credit for this handy work goes to the dynamic father-son duo for taking my cryptic explanations of what it could look like and making it a reality! Add in a couple dream-team chairs, which officially have been named the 2010 Craigslist Find of the Year, and Voila! A living room worth living in!









What was once blocked off as an entrance/exit, due to high pile royal blue carpet and a massive piano, now serves as the entrance/exit most frequented by guests.  It's also the access point to our outdoor dining area, and a great place for sharing a cocktail on a cool evening.


Some fresh paint and plans to eventually update the doors, this spot is great for mixing up said cocktails or enjoying breakfast with a side of Sponge Bob Square Pants.

Next, this little corner where our Wild Rabbit found a home.... also our wild kitty Meatball makes a surprise appearance. 



Half Bath


All we could really say about this room was: Yuck.  As the last room on the first floor to see a major change, the half bath went from a dirty, wallpapered nightmare into a functional and oh-so-cool dream.


If you want to check out the complete bathroom gut/remodel, you can check out Part 1Part 2, and Part 3 for Evan's play-by-play.

And that just about covers the entire first floor!  Next up, we'll be starting on the 3rd floor, though it may be some time before we blog about it.  For now, we hope you enjoyed the before & after shots and we'll be back soon!

UPDATE: see our dining room as it looks today: with BLACK walls! 

Thursday, January 6, 2011

More Birthday Fun

Around here, we love celebrating birthdays and so the fun went on pretty much all day!  Here are a few more shots of how the rest of the day was spent...

All birthday girls (and boys) should start the day out right with their favorite breakfast!  For Alex, pancakes with butter (syrup on the side) and strawberries.

Wonder what she wished for?

In years past Alex and I have celebrated her birthday with a day full of fun, this year she wanted to be at school with her friends and share treats with everyone, so I picked up some cookies & milk and had a great time at the class party. 

Those are numbers 6's in case you couldn't tell.  Four people (2 adults and 2 kids) asked what  the "g" stood for.  Oh well - they were super tasty!

Above, Alex with current BFFs Bella & Tulie.  

Below, a special delivery from dad.

Next, this super cute poster that all her classmates made to help celebrate her big day.

Below, favorite friend Harry explains to the class that he drew a crown "Because Alex is our Queen!"  
What a moment to miss getting on video.  Priceless

Below, more cuteness from friends Tyler, left, (who apparently is Alex's boyfriend -- or so she tells us! WHAT!?) and Riley. 

We were a little shocked to hear talk of a budding romance in kindergarten, but we're thinking we'll let this "relationship" slide.  Tyler is pretty darn cute and his parents are pretty rad.

Do you know what this says?

Neither do we.
I'll go out on a limb and guess it has something to do with the date. :)

So....after a fun filled afternoon with 20 5&6 year-olds, it was great to end the day with dinner for just the 3 of us at T-Rex Cafe and a little birthday gifting at Build-a-Dino.  

This is officially the 3rd birthday that we have celebrated with some form of Build-a-Something.  It's a favorite of Alex's and I later found out it's what she wished for earlier in the day.  :)

This little big 6 year old is fast asleep now and we've just put the finishing touches on invitations to her upcoming Princess Party for a few of her fellow princess friends- it promises to be another fun-filled adventure I'm sure.  

We believe in celebrating birthdays, even if those celebrations go on for a few days. It's an opportunity to celebrate one's good fortune of being on Earth another year! With the sometimes crazy schedules that we keep, it is so important to take time out and celebrate a birthday when it comes around!  
We loved sharing this day with Alex and hope that you enjoyed this recap of the day's events!
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