Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Mini Beach House Tour

Well, as it turns out, I don't have as many before pictures as I thought of the beach house.  I have a few of the kitchen before the cabinets were re-done and we got new appliances, but the rest of the photos I have are after we started the paint and decorating transformation.  It's been a collaborative effort and we're all very proud of how it's turned out so far.  Just try to imagine all the rooms with the same dark brown paneling and decor from the 80's...

The bar stools used to be plain round ones with country blue vinyl seats until they were replaced with these. One of the first updates made were the new floor tiles.  They don't show dirt nearly as bad as the white floors we had before.

The paneling in the kitchen, main living areas, and the Master BR won't be painted over because they are solid cedar, but we've made other changes to lighten things up.  For starters, this picnic style dining table was replaced with a much nicer cream colored table with gorgeous black chairs.  The light fixture was replaced with recessed lighting.  

Adding new faces to the cabinets and painting them a creamy white absolutely changed the look of this kitchen.  We've also gotten all new appliances to update the kitchen.

This buffet was built and has made a HUGE difference in the kitchen.  All we used to have here was an open bookshelf that served as our "pantry".  This looks so much better and gives a lot of added storage.

These canisters were a birthday gift to my mother-in-law from the Hub, the Bub, and I.  So pretty.

Sorry this picture is a tad blurry, it was taken hastily for insurance purposes.  But this is what our Living Room furniture used to look like - sturdy, but not very pretty or comfortable. The bucket on the left is probably full of Oxyclean - it's the best stuff for getting stains out of the Berber carpet.

This is a pretty little vignette hanging in the Living Room.  I love the little sign that says "Home is where the waves are".  A renter left that for us, wasn't that sweet?

We replaced the furniture with this cream colored leather furniture that we bought secondhand.  It's so comfortable and it's much easier to keep clean, especially with kids flopping and eating all over it!  And the Bub, my niece, and I found the new end tables and coffee table at a consignment store.

I love this big see-through starfish.  The rustic candle holders came from my house and the little starfish were a Big Lots find.

These shelves around the fireplace used to be filled with old books, board games, and piles of seashells. My friend Jennifer and I cleaned all that stuff off and completely transformed this area.  There are still lots of sea shells, but a variety of other pretties make the shelves look nice as well.  This chair is the best one for reading and relaxing - you have a nice view of the dunes from here.

This is the room the Hub and I sleep in.  The color here is very soothing.  We do have nicer bedding that we use when we come (although I do love these old bedspreads), but we have renters during the summer months and we keep the nicer linens locked away.  Trust me, renters WILL steal nice things, but they also steal weird things like salad bowls, 30 year-old hair dryers, and bedspreads.  It's sad that we can't leave our nicer stuff out for them to enjoy as well, but that lesson has been learned.  That's why we don't have fancy TV's or other electronics in the house.  Besides, people are supposed to be outside enjoying the beach when they're here - not inside watching TV, right?

This is the only decent picture I have of the yellow bedroom.  All the others turned out bad from the glare in this room.  It's painted a soft yellow with white trim and the bedding we have for us to use is a dark royal blue and white.  It's a beautiful room - very bright and sunny.

This picture hangs in the yellow room and I think it's so cute.  I couldn't resist buying it when I found it in a little boutique at the beach.  All the perfect things to do when you're here!

This is my sister-in-law's room and it hasn't been painted yet.  We're waiting on her to pick a color, so Leigh, if you're reading this - pick one already!!  Just kidding - it's a big decision and you definitely don't want to paint it a color you'll hate.  Once we have a color to work with, we'll set about finding her some beautiful bedding. We have a nice white headboard that will go in here and are looking for some new bedside tables too.  One thing's for sure, I think she'll love it once we get it done.

This bedding is at least 15 years old - definitely TIME TO GO!  We're keeping that painting on the wall, just updating the frame and are on the lookout for some more pretty artwork for this room.

This is the porch on the beach side - the front porch.  The picnic style dining table is now out here and allows for much more room to eat.  It's basically the kid/teenager's table now! We have several more rocking chairs on the other end of the porch as well. And yes, the house is purple.  Our last name is Lavender and the house is named the Sea Lavender after a variety of the plant that grows only in coastal regions.

Here's our pretty sign.  Looks like the lettering needs to be touched up a bit.  I'll just add that to my list of things to do when I go back in a couple of weeks!

This is the back porch on the street side.  We have removed the green carpet - it clashed really bad with the purple!

Ferns grow so great here because it's so humid and they get lots of sea mist.  Our renters are asked to keep them watered for everyone to enjoy, and for the most part they do.

This is the best part about the beach though - watching Daisy try to dig her way to China.  She's gonna dig her way underwater if she's not careful!  That's my handsome Bub holding the leash.  Ah, to be that skinny again...

Well, I hope you enjoyed this little tour of the Sea Lavender.  We still have much to do to get everything just perfect.  I will have more pictures in a couple of weeks of the completed bathrooms.  Thanks so much for joining me today!


Monday, January 27, 2014

Beach House Paint Party

Holy frozen fingers and toes, y'all!  It was FREEZING at the beach.  No peaceful walks on the beach for me this time.  Besides, I was too busy having my big ol' paint party. Well, it was just a party for one since I was the only one there, but a party nonetheless. We've been slowly painting the bedrooms at the house over the past year or so and doing lots of updates.  We still have one bedroom to go, but we really need to get these bathrooms done.  I'll start by showing you how beautiful it was outside Friday morning when I got up.

Gorgeous, yes?  But the wind chill was four degrees.  Four degrees, people - at the beach!  I opened the door, stuck my camera out, took this picture, and slammed the door shut!  Didn't venture out all day because the high temperature was 28, which is very unusual for coastal North Carolina.  By Friday evening though, I just had to bundle up and go out on the boardwalk to take this picture.  Look how still the ocean is...

Friday involved a lot of prep work.  Taking the cabinet doors off, cleaning the baseboards, taping around everything, etc., and all I got done was two coats on the trim.  Of course, I was so anxious to get started that I forgot to take before pictures of the bathroom, but I took these after one coat of trim paint.  I don't know what was wrong with me, but I felt like I worked in circles all day and that I didn't get much accomplished. Plus, I was really tired and was in bed for the evening by 7:30.

Isn't that paneling lovely?  And yes, it's in every room of the house.  We replaced the counters and sinks a couple of years ago and my mother-in-law had a walk-in shower installed.  The blue bedroom in the background is the one the Hub and I sleep in.  We picked out a very serene bluish-green paint and I love it.

Saturday was a much better day for me as far as painting goes, but still very cold and very, very windy.  I painted for 10 hours straight and only took a break for lunch and a quick break when my friend Jennifer stopped by.  But the results were amazing! Just take a look at how much brighter and beautiful this space is!

It really makes the wood floor pop, doesn't it?  The giant mirror will be replaced with two smaller chunky white mirrors over each sink and that 70's glam light fixture is getting ditched too.  We are having some molding added to the cabinet doors and it's going to look really nice.  I still have a little trim work to do and some shelves to finish - my wrist just gave out on me by Sunday - but I'll get everything done when I go back in a couple of weeks.  I'm excited to get this bathroom finished and post the complete reveal. Then it will be time to start on the other one.  It's the "fun" bathroom since it's the one the kids use most of the time, so it should be fun to re-do!  Not to give anything away, but I think some tasteful purple might be involved...

So, whatcha think?  Do you like it so far?  Tell me in the comments - I'd love to hear what you have to say!


Thursday, January 23, 2014

A Break In The Organizing Process

It's almost the weekend y'all!  I've gotten two of the closets on my list done and will tackle the rest next week.  I was planning to post photos of the closets today, but they really just didn't turn out great.  The pictures, I mean, not the closets- the closets look soooo much better!  I couldn't seem to manage any good pictures of them.  Oh well, maybe I'll try again.  Anyways...on to my weekend plans!

Home improvement: Blond woman painting wall
This will be me...ALL weekend

I'm a little excited to take a break from the organizing for a few days, but mostly because today is my Friday. I'm taking the day off work tomorrow and I'm heading to the beach to work on the beach house.  My husband's family has an oceanfront house and I'm going down to paint at least one of the bathrooms and maybe get a start on the other one.  I don't mind going alone - it's peaceful there in the winter.  It's a challenge to paint the walls in this house because the wood paneling is very rustic and the texture is so rough. It also drinks up a lot of paint.  We've done a lot of work on this house the past few years.  It hadn't been updated at all since the 80's and it was pretty horrible.  A family friend, Jennifer, and I finally convinced my mother-in-law to let us do some redecorating and updating and it has turned out great.  My post Monday will be the before and after photos of the beach house, but for now I'd like to leave you with a taste of the beautiful place I'm going...

This is not photoshopped, I promise.  This was right after a hurricane two Augusts ago.  Thank goodness we didn't get any major damage - just a few missing shingles.  We were heading over the inlet bridge to start back home after un-boarding the house and this gorgeous sunset just took my breath away.  I made the Hub stop so I could get out and take this picture.  The colors were exactly this red and purple and I've never seen anything like it.

Down the steps and take the path through the sea grass to the beach.

The view from our boardwalk on a cold Fall evening.  We're so lucky to have this place and we pray hard every year for no hurricanes.  Fingers crossed for another hurricane-free year in 2014!

I will see y'all when I get back from my "working vacation".  At least I'll get to see my friend and eat some amazing crabcakes!  I hope everyone has a great weekend - stay warm!


Monday, January 20, 2014

Craigslist Diamond In The Rough

Happy Monday everybody!  I hope y'all had a great weekend.  Did you get any New Year organizing done? I'm mid-closet organization at the moment.  I got some done in the hall closets on Saturday, but not much yesterday due to two very important football games! I'll have the before and after pics for you on Wednesday.  In the meantime, I thought you might like to see the rough headboard that I bought for $25 on Craigslist and transformed into a glorious diamond.  Well, maybe not glorious, but it's real pretty!  It weighs a ton and is a very solid piece of furniture.  The owner had sawed off one of the legs to get it up some stairs and reattached it (badly) with Gorilla glue. It took a little rigging to fix, but the Hub got it back to working order and I set about making it beautiful.

Here's the before.  You can see where the cut leg was repaired.  The glue had leaked out and spilled all down the side of the leg and it was about 2 inches shorter than the other leg.  It took my husband a lot of work, but it looks much better now and you can't really see it because of the nightstand.

A close-up after one coat of paint.

The finished headboard.  It took a while to paint and wax, but it was SO worth it.

Finally set up in our bedroom.  

The walls are darker in this room, so the headboard really helps lighten it up.

And most importantly, it's Ginger approved!
I've had very good luck with everything I've bought on Craigslist.  I just got a great deal on some other furniture for our bedroom too.  I'm not quite finished getting this room the way I want it, of course.  Once I get it all in place, I'll post some pics of the whole room.  I'm also thinking of painting the walls a dove gray to lighten it up even more.  That will be a BIG project though since the Hub doesn't like to help with painting. Maybe I'll put a brush in Ginger's paw and put her cute little patootie to work!  Do you have any Craigslist or thrifted finds that you've transformed?  Tell me all about it in the comments!

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Thursday, January 16, 2014

Getting Organized 2014

I don't know about y'all, but I say this same thing every year - "I'm gonna organize EVERYTHING in my house and it will STAY that way!" But this year, I'm really gonna do it. Now, I'm not making any promises about it staying that way - there are two other people who live in my household who do not share my passion for organization. Anyway, I'm starting with drawers first. Don't wanna go TOO big too soon, ya know? Last night I started on the junk drawers in my kitchen. Yes, I said drawers, plural. We have three just in the kitchen. Only one is for kitchen junk, the other two are for all of the stray stuff that always seems to end up on my kitchen counters. Pens, spare change, old keys, hair know the drill. I bought some organizers at Marshall's for $6.99 each - they're really for jewelry I think, but I like how pretty they are. More motivation to keep them looking nice and neat, right? I'm almost embarrassed to show these, but here's the before pictures of the drawers:

Awful, I know. But I suspect we all have at least one. You wouldn't believe the junk I threw away and how many dollars in change I found!

This is all the junk that needs to be redistributed to appropriate places in the house.  We had a disturbing number of tongue depressors and allen wrenches in one drawer.  Have no idea where they all came from, but I'll use the sticks to stir paint with or something and I think I'll keep one of the wrenches just for good measure.

And here is the after...

So much better! That's about $15 in change there.  I can add that to the $40 in other change I've collected from around the house and buy myself a treat for doing all this organizing!  We shouldn't run out of writing utensils anytime soon either...

Now I have some extra space for more junk. Yay!  The big cow is a crumb sweeper - turn him on and he sucks up anything - you can twist his head off and empty him out.  Love him!  And the smaller cow is one of the Bub's toys from when he was little.  He carried it around all the time and I just can't part with it.

One drawer was left completely empty and will be a much more convenient place for my dishtowels.  Yes, those are cat feet you see in the picture.  Ginger, aka "Nosy Rosie", knows she is NOT supposed to be on the kitchen counter, but I couldn't keep her off last night for some reason.  I don't know what got into her. Could it be the fact that I found about a hundred cat toys in one drawer?

I felt GOOD after I got this done.  It's going to be really cold here this weekend, so I plan to stay inside and clean closets.  The coat closet in our entryway is atrocious.  We don't even use it for coats. Stuff falls out every time I open the door and I can't stand it anymore!  I keep my reusable shopping bags, the dog's stuff, small appliances, big platters and bowls, and anything else I don't have a spot for in there.  Sometimes the Bub's instrument (which is huge) or the Hub's golf clubs get shoved in there too.  I remember when it used to be so neat and organized........  Anyway, it's about to get that way again on Saturday.  I can't wait!

Here's my list of areas I'm going to organize in the coming weeks and months:

Junk drawers
Entryway closet
Hall closet
Utility closet
Linen closet
Garage (for the 1000th time!)
Storage barn (for the 500th time)

The garage and storage barn will have to wait until it gets a little warmer here.  I do a lot of my "crafting" in the garage, so I'm planning to get rid of a lot of stuff that we never use (namely a broken 40 year-old generator, a five gallon bucket of roofing tar...huh?, hula hoops, a 100 year-old rug with a hole in it) and make myself a nicer area to work and figure out a way to keep myself warm out there.  Maybe I'll use all the spare change I've collected to buy myself a space heater and a Dumpster Bag!

Tell me - what are your organizing goals for 2014?

Today I am linking up with: