Wednesday, July 28, 2010

New House Numbers

Our new house numbers arrived in the mail today.  I bought them on with my rewards points.  They're by Atlas Homewares in aged bronze (although they're not as aged as I was hoping they'd be).  I do like that they have little extenders so that they float out away from the house.

I like them a lot, but I can't decide if I like that the "0" is slightly off center, or if it's going to bother me later until I fix it.  What do you think?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Getting Rid of Fleas, Naturally [or, WHY WE DON'T HAVE INDOOR PETS]

Flash back to a few weeks ago, and enter a very pissed off Heather.
I don't even like TALKING about fleas.  It's embarassing, and it makes people itch.
You're itching right now, aren't you?  Yeah.

I was in denial for the first little bit.
It's our brand new house! It's beautiful! They couldn't possibly have left us fleas to contend with!
117 bites later, I realized it was not mosquitoes and I freaked out. 

The previous owners had at least one cat and a dog that lived inside.  I'm sorry but if you have indoor pets,  you have to clean them at least once a week and do flea treatments regularly.  Otherwise the nice people who buy your house when you leave are going to have scarred legs and emotions.

Anyway, I called Advanced Green Pet Solutions and a very nice man named John came over and told me that for just $55 I could buy all the supplies needed to eradicate them myself.  Thank you John!

We bought the Talstar and Nylar from him for $45, and picked up the sprayer at Home Depot for $10.  3 ounces of Talstar and 1.5 ounces of Nylar get mixed in the round-up sprayer with 1 gallon of water.  This stuff is great because it's not toxic for humans, does the job really well, and does not stink.  It's not like a bug bomb where you have to vacate the premises and give all your fish up for adoption.

The first day, you vacuum everything (and get rid of the bag) and wash the linens in hot water.  Then you spray a light coating anywhere the walls meet the floor, and especially in warm areas like around the fridge.  He told us to just spray around the edge of our box-spring to deter them, but that it was unnecessary to spray the whole mattress.  A light coating on all carpeted areas.  I also learned that leather and vinyl furniture is the bomb because fleas can't bore there.

A week later, you do the same thing again.  Then you wait two weeks, and do the last treatment.  We just finished our final treatment, and it's totally worked the whole time, thank goodness. 

And if anyone asks, that is why we refuse to have indoor pets.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Sunny Bedroom

Our bedroom is on the West side of the house, so the light doesn't get really good until about 8pm and then it only lasts a short while.  That's actually a good thing, sleeping-wise.  But I love the way the light looks this time of evening. . .
We moved our antique dresser to the right of the bed (it was sitting weirdly in the living-room before that).  It's a little high for a bedside surface, but I actually like the way it looks and it seems to be working out just fine.

I'm loving the yellow bed frame, especially compared to what it was BEFORE.  And that's the same blanket we had before, but it's reversible.  Reversible blankets are sexy.  The little bit of embroidery on the window was a gift from my friend Leah, and I found the vintage pillowcases at Goodwill in Seattle.  Yes, I do buy secondhand bed linens.  I draw the line at underwear though.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Yes Please: Quirky Garden

I'm dreaming about the yard these days.  Probably because the weather has been so nice, but we have no where private to sit outside and enjoy it.  The yard is going to take a loooong time, purely because it's going to take me a looong time to come up with the $$ to do anything with it.  All the more time to dream up ideas I guess. . .

Kind of weird, but I have a thing for mushrooms.  I really want a big red mushroom with white spots to stick in the garden.  Then again, these muted neutral ones are pretty awesome. . .
photo via Compulsively Compiled

I am also in love with this lettered patio design. . . how awesome is that?
image via Studio G
And I'd really like a little collection of vintage metal lawn chairs because they're just spectacular.
image via Apartment Therapy (chair from Plow&Hearth)
There will probably be a lot of reds, yellows and oranges in my garden.  And the hobbit wants a gnome tucked in somewhere.  Maybe under my giant mushroom.  The neighbors will love us.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Orange Door At Night

I got a crapload of non-house-related stuff done today, so I took the evening to work on the living-room.  It's so far from finished I don't even want to photograph it yet.  In fact, I might not photograph it as an "After" thing until 2015.  But you can see a little peek at what I did through the window. . . please pardon the crappy white balance and graininess.  I didn't have the energy to walk three more feet to the car to get out my tripod.

P.S. If anyone knows of anyplace I can find an outdoor a ceiling-mount outdoor light that's NOT boring and NOT gold, let me know.  I'd love something either super retro, or kind of craftsman-style with glass and oiled bronze.

P.P.S. Thanks to all of you who are reading my silly little house blog.  Uh, feel free to leave comments any time ;-).  I read them.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Score! Weiman End Tables

Craigslist wins again!
I know these might not float everyone's boat, but I think they're fantastic and so does the hobbit.  I got two of these babies -- Weiman classics.  Originally listed at $55 each and I got both for $75 from a very nice long-haired man with excellent taste.
A few more scores like this and maybe we'll have a living-room.  If I could just afford the $$$ to get the click-back sofa reupholstered. . .

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Alphabet Hallway

If you want your kids to learn the alphabet in the actual order intended, don't send them to our house.
Our screwball alphabet hallway is well on its way!
I just painted a "W" red and an "N" blue to add to the collection.  They're outside drying.  The lovely Ann is making me a ceramic "Y" too.  Very exciting.
Now all I need is D, F, G, I, J, K, L, Q, S and V and I'll be done!  Of course, then I'll probably move on to numbers.  And punctuation. . .

Remember what the hallway looked like BEFORE?

Monday, July 19, 2010

Orange Door

Hey folks.
Sorry it's been a while --- I was off celebrating The Hobbit's and my 4 year anniversary.
But looky what I did yesterday and this morning!
Yup.  The Orange Door Cottage now actually fits its name.
No more cobalt blue like BEFORE. . .
The door is metal, which turned out to be a huge pain to paint.  I bought the good Dutch Boy Dirt Fighter Exterior stuff that works for metal, but I should have used a primer.  It took literally about 14 coats of paint to cover that sucker.  I hope to goodness it actually stays on (and yes, I sanded and cleaned first).

The color is Valspar's "Orange Maple." I love it!  Now it's starting to look more like our house. . . of course I see projects everywhere.
Siding needs to be pressure-washed, sidewalk ripped up and replaced with a curving flagstone path, that weird plumb tree blocking the roof view taken out (August 19th! Woohoo!), new steps, fencing, perhaps some actual plants. . .

Monday, July 12, 2010

The Hobbit's Library. . .

Well, I had a wedding on Saturday, but on Sunday the hobbit and I got a crap-load of work done for the house.  Sometime a week or so ago, I realized I absolutely could not unpack anymore boxes until we had actual shelves on which to put the contents of the remaining boxes.  We have an entire library, but only owned two hand-me-down shelves.  Not sure how we've gotten away with that for the past four years. . . hmmm.  Might have something to do with the fact that my poor husband has been double, and triple shelving his books.

Ideally, we'd have our extremely talented carpenter friend come over and do custom floor-to-ceiling built-ins.  It's going to be a while before we can afford that though, so I headed to IKEA for some shelving I thought I'd immediately regret due to their extreme particle-board-ness.  I am, however, highly impressed with the Billy Bookcase system.  They're sturdy, easy to put together, and they look just fine.  I'm a convert.

It's not finished.  I'm getting another tall skinny one for that empty corner you see there, and that odd little shelf under the window will get painted, and. . . so on and so on.

And now, a word from the hobbit himself:
"This office is kind of a dream come true for me.  When I was growing up we didn’t have a lot of money.  My bedrooms were either a narrow porch add on, or a small storage room that had just enough room for a bed, a desk, and a chest of drawers.  I always wanted a room with books on four walls, with enough room to stretch out and write.  A beat up leather chair was necessary, and green walls.  And now I have all these things.  Somewhere inside of me, little Mike is doing a happy dance."

P.S.  The stuffed bull's name is George.  He's old.  And anatomically correct.  Such a strange childhood toy.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Score! New Dining Room Light

Well, in spite of my epic failure last night, I did manage to put up a new light in the dining nook.  I'd been looking for something like this, but they were either too expensive or too flimsy feeling.  I had a stroke of luck at Goodwill and found this baby for $6.99.  It was rigged up really weird though -- some kind of screw-it-into-a-light-bulb doohickey.  I had to cut the wires, and custom fit it to the ceiling plate of another Westinghouse Pendant Kit I had.

The ceiling plate isn't quite big enough so I can some of the raw edging around the top.  I'll fix it later.  My neck hurts.  Overall though, I quite like the new light. . .

Especially compaired to the old one. . .

Friday. DIY Lighting Fail.

You may have noticed I didn't post yesterday. 
That's because I was standing on the kitchen counter with my head in the ceiling. 

It all started with a simple clear glass globe fitter shade I found at Goodwill for exactly $1.99.  I thought, in a moment of what I thought was inspiration, hey!  I could make my own pendant light like THIS one!

Over the next several days, I obsessed.
I obsessed until I found THIS pendant kit at Home Depot.  But my glass fitter shade was the wrong size for it.  So I tried to adapt it -- looked all over for something exactly four inches around that I could drill a hole through.  I discovered an Adam's peanut butter jar lid fit perfectly.  Went through a huge headache to paint it, drill a socket hole through the center, and tiny holes around the edges for screws to hold my glass shade.  Even put a rubber band around the glass lip for the screws.

Last night was when it was all going to come together, and my beautiful globe pendant would be hanging gorgeously over the kitchen sink.

I got everything wired in properly (which took some doing, due to the mess that was up there before), and had exactly three seconds to stand back and look at the thing of beauty I had made before the glass cracked wide open.


So, right now there's just a bare bulb hanging over the sink.  Which, I have to admit, still looks better than the other teeny thing that was up there. 

Never fear though.  I will find a solution yet.  And I DID have success with some other house adventures this week, which I will show you in a bit.  I don't have a wedding this weekend, so my plan was to paint the front door orange at last.  Of course, it looks like mother nature has other plans for me what with this sudden burst of non-summer weather.

P.S. If ANYone knows of a company that actually makes pendant kits for 4" fitter shades, you let me know.