Wednesday, October 7, 2015

When I Feel Super Productive

Hey there! I don't know if I mentioned that it's my birthday week -- I turn 40 in a few days! Whoot! It doesn't depress me at all, I look forward to the wisdom that age brings. :) 

Usually I take it easy my whole birthday week but this one has been a crazy one so far. Along with that I'm starting the kitchen backsplash finally! My plan has totally changed and I'm SO EXCITED about it. I'm not using tile like I planned initially. I hope it will look as good as I'm imagining it and I can show you next week!

So today I'm recapping the months of August and September as I have gotten behind on these. Also I know it makes you weep in a corner when you miss one of my posts so I do this as a service to you. ;)

Just a warning -- I've had a one-track mind lately and that track is the kitchen. :) Lots of things happening after quite a lull throughout the spring and summer! I shared how I organize our pantry (and have stopped filling it with food we never eat) here
glass door on pantry
Because we took down some cabinets in the kitchen I wanted to be even smarter about organizing in general in there. I purged and then made good use of the storage I have and the extra storage I've created in the past year. 

I did a little decorating. :) Layering really is the key when it comes to a pulled together space, in my opinion. I added a few more "layers" to our home in preparation for fall
black dresser gold hardware
I'm not usually one for a ton of accessories around the house, but this time of year it feels cozy and warm to add a few more touches here and there. 

In this post I shared how I hang just about anything: 
how to hang anything
Including that fork and spoon set above the pantry up above. I get asked about those more than any other "art" in my house!

Finally the kitchen reno kicked off again, and as is the case with any remodeling project, things get worse before they get better:
removing tile backsplash
My Dad and I took down a wall of cabinets (it was really only three smaller ones and one double) and I knew immediately I was going to love it. That's saying a lot when it looked like this. ;) Then we removed all the tile and the drywall, which was my least favorite part so far. 

I sold our old above-the-oven microwave and got a smaller one that I installed in the island
microwave in island
I finished extending that island earlier this year and I was thrilled to finally get that last piece finished up! 

So far so good with the microwave being lower -- it doesn't bother me at all. We only use it a few times a week but to me it's just like reaching down into a cabinet. I love being about to put hot food right on the countertop. And I absolutely LOVE that the microwave is no longer the focus of our whole kitchen. 

Next up were some boring projects like drywall fixes and our beautiful new wall lights went in: 
gooseneck lights kitchen
I really love them! They are back in stock on Amazon (link in that post) if you want to check them out. 

Progress was thwarted for over a week when a piece of our granite broke during install. Thankfully all the pain of washing dishes in the tiny bathroom sink went away when it was all finished up last week
river white granite
I don't think I could love the stone more! It's going to look SO good with the new cabinet colors too. I also shared the process of picking out granite and getting it installed here and the stones that look like marble here

I've done most of this kitchen renovation myself and I think I'm most proud of the island and the upper cabinets I built up to the ceiling a couple weeks ago: 
building cabinets to ceiling
I can't wait to see everything painted out! Hopefully it will all be pretty seamless. 

If you're interested in seeing more updates (as they happen), follow me on Instagram. I'm hoping to get a chunk of the new backsplash done today so if so I'll share it there. 

I did step away from the kitchen a few times! OK this was still part of the kitchen but a different focus at least. I waited for a year to decide what I was doing with our kitchen table and I'm so glad I waited! I absolutely LOVE it in white
white table wood chairs
I looks so lovely with the white trim in the room and the dark floors. I take forever to make decisions but when I finally do I am usually really happy with them. :)

I always love the cute seasonal pillows at Pottery Barn (or anywhere) but hate spending so much money for something I'll only have out for a couple months. My solution yet again? Use table linens instead: 
seasonal pillows from table linens
These were made from a table runner and I made more with Pottery Barn napkins as well. Love my little pumpkin pillows! 

I shared ten free fall printables here
free fall printables
They are such an easy way to add some fall decor without spending a ton of money!

And finally, one of my favorite DIY projects ever -- the planked wall above our kitchenette in the basement: 
wood planked wall reclaimed look
I varied the color of the stains to make it looked like a reclaimed wood wall. It cost me about $35 in wood and stain -- not bad at all for such a big impact. Our basement is our hangout spot in the fall and winter so I love having this warm spot finished up.

There you go! Love how accomplished I feel after doing these recaps! Did you miss any? If you have any questions about any of them, feel free to ask. I'm off to work on the kitchen…again. :) 

Monday, October 5, 2015

October Before and Afters!

Hello all! Thank you so much for the lovely comments on my story Friday! I'm still in awe of what happened. I have been in touch with the editor of the book -- crazy! All weekend I've sat and thought about it and can't believe I just happened upon that letter.

Anyway, today is the first Monday of October (WHERE did September go so fast??) so it's time for another Before and After link up. Before we do that, I have a few fantastic projects to share from last month. If you missed it there are a ton of awesome projects and spaces waiting for you!

I stopped in my tracks when I saw Tricia's entry:
Pottery Barn style entry
I thought these were her inspiration pics from Pottery Barn! Beautiful right? So well done!

I've been watching Sage's guest room progress and absolutely LOVE this space:
bright white bedroom map wall
You have to go see two things -- the before pictures and the beautiful map wall in this space. LOVE!

April wanted a wood and concrete table from Restoration Hardware but didn't want to pay for it. So she made her own. Wow!:
Restoration Hardware table knock off
Did I mention she did it for $200?? No? Well she did. Go check out the detailed tutorial here.

I loved every bit of this bathroom redo that Stacy did:
jack and jill bathroom redo
I love that tile and the navy vanity -- but you have to see the color she painted the vanity on her daughter's side. Love special touches like that! I bet the kids love it.

Kelli and I are working on our kitchens at the same time, and when she posted a photo of her progress on my Facebook page, I fell in love with her countertops:
river white granite
So much so I looked for them when I was shopping and ended up getting the same! They are soooo beautiful! Kelli's kitchen is going to be a showstopper -- go check out the progress and see the before and afters. 

I may have shared Sarah's dining room in-progress, I can't remember. Either way I'm sharing it now because it is such a bright, beautiful space
bright natural dining room
It was pretty before too, just darker. Paint and fabric will completely transform a space! I love that it's not overdone and styled to the hilt -- just simple and pretty.

And finally, but certainly not least, I loved Leslie's built-in spice rack idea:
DIY spice rack on cabinet
She's a girl after my own heart -- she couldn't just add the racks, she went all out with new trim and added details. Love her whole kitchen!

Awesome projects as always! Thanks for linking up and sharing your projects! Now it's time to see what you've been up to recently. If you'd like to be considered for next month's round up, be sure to link to TDC in your post or include this code:

<div align="center"><a href="" title="TDC Before and After" target="_blank"><img src="" alt="TDC Before and After" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

Now let's see what you've been up to! Have fun!