Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Remember those pictures I posted in September of the gigantic hole in my family room ceiling? Well, this post is all about the silver lining to that gigantic craptastic gray cloud.

Apparently, the fastest and least expensive way to get a new floor in your master bathroom is to have the toilet leak slowly into the sub floor for a while. The demo work happened amazingly fast. And then my insurance company gladly put new tile in for us. Gorgeous new tile. Big gray squares with a white pebble border around the tub and shower. So pretty.

(Um. Yeah...I forgot to take pictures of the floor. But I will. Just not now, because my laptop is being really lame. And I am quite sure that if I try to mess around in Photoshop any more tonight I am just taunting the blue screen of death into paying me a visit.)

Where was I? Oh, right...my beautiful, beautiful, beautiful new floor. It really is so lovely. And I am not just saying that because of the stained white carpet it replaced. Yes. You read that right. Somebody thought that it was a good idea to put carpet in the bathroom. WHITE carpet. And I am pretty sure that at one time it was really nice, expensive white carpet. It's wall to wall here actually. Clearly, there were no pets or children at this address before we moved in. Clearly. At this point, we are just waiting for all that formerly white carpet to spontaneously combust.

But back to my pretty bathroom. Once the (beautiful) new floor was in, the other parts of the very dated bathroom started to look even more 1991 ghetto. And then, as if in answer to my prayers, the white tile countertops began to crumble right apart. You would be brushing your teeth, and if you leaned against the countertop a tile would just come right off.

In addition to being super tacky, I deemed this to be quite dangerous and immediately started researching our options. As it turns out, a piece of remnant granite and in depth knowledge of Overstock.com can turn you into the next HGTV do it yourself star.

We had the granite installed professionally. But Mr. G and I did the rest ourselves. Mostly that involved some basic plumbing. But there was also an awful lot of silver paint involved. We still plan to put a glass tile backsplash up. But if we're being honest...I don't really care when that gets done. I'm just enjoying my fancy pants bathroom. Have a peek...

Incidentally, I have learned just how difficult it is to photograph a room. I now have a lot more respect for those guys over at Architectural Digest.

My shiny "new" vanity. Love. Love. Love. Even the little knobs are cool. Love. Le sigh.

And the rehabed medicine cabinet. Seriously, you can't even believe how ugly that thing was pre paint and new cabinet handles.

This is actually a candliere that I've had hanging there for years. But it looks so much better now that the rest of the bathroom isn't...well...ugly.

Ditto these towel hooks. I despise towel bars. Especially right next to the shower. Not functional at all. So I always rip them out and put hooks in. Now my hooks look kind of spa-ish. Says me.

Um. These towel bars don't count. First of all, they are pretty. And second, they are not intended to do anything except hold the towels that no one is allowed to use. Deckrashuns. As Will likes to call those kinds of things.

My vision for the master suite was always kind of a Caribbean feel. In the bedroom the walls are a bright green, and there are french doors that let in a ton of light. Then you go into the bathroom with its two big windows and the effect is quite summery. The cheery blue paint with the white towels and white starfish makes me feel like I'm on an island, even in January.

There are still a few things I would like to do in this room. New mirrors with big silver frames. And a new light fixture, specifically. And then we move on to the dreadful downstairs bathroom. I've been inspired by some of the wallpaper on the Nest Interiors blog. I don't have any black walls in my house yet...

When do I get my own TV show?


Thursday, January 20, 2011

I am just going to go ahead and blame my lack of posting on whatever this viral ickyness that has invaded my system turns out to be. In fact, I think I’ll just whine about that in general for a few more days. And then I will get back to posting a whole lot of stuff. Specifically, a rant I have been thinking about involving healthcare. A new art mom project and my idea for my very own art mom blog. And maybe a list of stuff you can send me for my upcoming birthday. Expensive stuff. You should start saving now.
Until then…

I have just learned that some girlfriends of mine, and a few girlfriends of theirs, just started a blog. It looks pretty promising. You should check it out.

The Idaho 8

Alrighty then. Back to consuming mass quantities of Vitamin C and Echinacea. Ugh.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

We had a parent teacher conference last night that has me…I don’t know. Questioning.

I think I’ve mentioned that Sweet Pea seems to be struggling with her reading. This was first addressed in Kindergarten, and continues to be something we are working on in 1st grade. I am feeling really good about the teachers we have on our team. I think everyone is on board with helping out my girl, with the number one goal being building her confidence and keeping her a bright, smiling, happy student. Which, thankfully, is exactly what she is right now.

So, here’s the part that is tough for me to sort through. Sweet Pea is probably only registering as a below average reader because she’s in a very above average school. We have been told by 2 reading specialists who are very close to our situation that in an average school she would be an average kid.

So. Um. Are we in the wrong school? Is that a crazy thought to have? Here we are, lucky enough to have a public neighborhood school that is AMAZING. AMAZING I tell you. So awesome. But is it too awesome?

It’s not like we cheated on an entrance exam. This is just a public school. It’s in a part of town that draws from some pretty upscale neighborhoods. (Uh, yes. I live in what we call the South East End Ghetto. No gate on my culdesac.) But rich kids are not automatically smart kids. So how that factors in, I’m not sure. But you know it does. I mean, duh. Lots of kids with very fancy preschool pedigrees. Tutors. And parents who have IQ’s that support their 6 figure incomes. (Mostly in technology, I’m guessing. Given the area employers.)

So there you go. Smart kids who have parents with a lot of resources. And voila, we have a really high functioning school. So my very normally functioning kid is coming across as low.

NOT THAT HER TEACHER HAS LABELED HER AS SUCH. That’s an important point to make. Her teacher gets all this, she’s the one explaining it to me. Again, her big concern is helping Sweet Pea feel more comfortable with her reading skills before she gets frustrated at being less adept at this than her peers. It’s not like she doesn’t notice either. We’re stumbling through the equivalent of Cat in the Hat and there are kids in her class reading Harry Potter.

You think I’m joking. Don’t you? Well. I’m not.

So what is a mom who has recently added “full time job” to her to-do list supposed to do? We have been armed with an arsenal of reading activities that are so fun my kids will be tricked into thinking they are playing. (Shhh…) I can’t wait to get started. But when the H-E-double hockey sticks am I gonna do that?? And let’s not forget that my girl is at school until 4:00 as it is. (And now afterschool care until 5:30.) She is so tired when we get home at night I can barely get dinner in her.

If someone has the magic answer, I’m listening.


P.S. Parenting is hard on your heart.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

I just finished a little housekeeping around here. I made some updates to my blogrolls. I've added some really fantastic sites. Most are friends and family blogs that I am excited to learn exist! And there are also a few new sites in the "Inspiration" column. These are blogs I visit for art and food ideas. Lots of good stuff there. Please give them a looksee!

More from me later about a few home improvement projects we've completed around here.

I'd tell you about that now, but there is a yellow lab who is very determined to get up in my lap for a belly scratch. Princess Irie Dog always gets her way...


Thursday, January 06, 2011

Some pictures from our North Pole Express train ride along senic Highway 55 in Idaho. It was a winter wonderland all the way to the North Pole. And the kids were thrilled when Santa joined us on the ride back to Horseshoe Bend.

A fantastic adventure! We hope to make it an annual tradition. (Thanks Bompa!)

Saturday, January 01, 2011

The other night I was talking with some of my girls about the lovely Sheila the psychic. You may remember that in a moment of desperation two years ago I consulted her about finding some lost keys.

Well, after she helped me find my keys we had a little psychic party at my house. About 6 of my girlfriends came over and Sheila did mini readings for them. Everyone left feeling quite happy about what she told them. (Psychic Sheila’s Suga Shack on Facebook, if you’re interested.)

My reading was, in retrospect, really awesome. It happened just a couple of weeks after I made the switch to stay at home mom two years ago. I was still kind of freaking out about how all that was going to work, and Sheila said exactly what I needed to hear. Quit living in your mind and start living your life. Be in the moment…

I had all these plans for launching a my little crafty business while I was home with the kids. Etsy, craft fairs, etc. It never happened, and I never really worried about it. I was too busy enjoying my time with my kids.

Sheila told me then that my time at home would be fleeting. She said that in just a year or so I would be back doing work for a non-profit. Planning parties and working with people.

I forgot she said that. Completely erased it from my mind. Until Scarlett and I were talking about her after Christmas dinner. (And also my mom, my mother in law, and my aunt in law. What fun girls in my family!!)

I start that new job on Monday. Alumni relations for a private high school. Wow.