Friday, March 28, 2014

Ready for guests

This weekend I am off to a conference (and I am so looking forward to meeting up with my grad school friends and all my art teacher friends from all over the US!), and when I get back on Monday, my daughter and our little grandson Parker will be here waiting for me!

We really wanted to have the whole house ready so we weren't in mid-reno like we were last time they were out.  We still have plywood counters, we shopped for soapstone last weekend, but amazingly, we just couldn't find much to choose from and the one place that had it, the slabs were kind of meh.  So for what it would cost (around 3K), I think we are going to make our out concrete countertops.  If we like them, they'll stay around awhile, and maybe I'll find my dream soapstone in the future.  I think they'll cost around 500-600 dollars, which is a great solution and might be a great permanent one.

But this week, we got almost all the finishing touches done - still a few art pieces here and there to hang, but it's definitely presentable.  I hung some family pictures in the hallway:
I had set up a gallery of pictures previously, but Dale was feeling under-represented in the family area, so we went through his family pictures and found a few to add in.  I also hung a few things over the fireplace, which meant we had to use our hilti-gun again:
OMG, so glad we bought that.  I am SICK of drilling/placing anchors in concrete.  The wall above the fireplace looks like drywall, but it's concrete.  So that stuff aint going nowhere.  Ever.

I also arranged a gallery wall over the sofa -- I still have a couple of empty frames, but I can come up with a fun project here and there --
I don't know what I'm going to put on that pedestal bracket.  I'll find something.  And now that I look at the Mexican blanket on the sofa, well, that's a big mistake.  I'll remedy that ASAP.  Just trying to add some color into our rather neutral furnishings.

I ordered a nice, large kilim rug that should, Lebowski-style, "pull the whole room together", but it hasn't gotten here yet.  I'm getting a bit frustrated, hasn't been shipped yet, and I need to call next week to see what's up.  It's already been 2 weeks and it should at least have been shipped out of the warehouse.  So for now, we have a smaller area rug.  That rug is 5 x 7, the new one is 7 x 11, so I am hoping it will help the room read as a unit. 

On another wall, I have a small table that I want to do a fun paint job on.  I also have a few empty jars that I am once again going to make an attempt to create terrariums in.  My last attempt was foiled by Mercury, who reached in and pulled all the plants out.  This time, I have a big one with a lid, and I'll figure out something for the two open topped jars.

I'd also like to get some orchids, and I think this would be a good place for them to get bright, indirect light.  And maybe I can get my cats to leave them alone....

One of my favorite things is this curtain rod. I was really frustrated before with our curtain situation - we have 3 panels (instead of 4), and because of the length of the run, we had to have a center support, which meant that we couldn't evenly space the panels when the sun comes in during the early evening as it's setting.  So originally, I was thinking I'd install a pipe from the left wall to the fireplace wall, but when I went to Lowe's to price that out, I was a little shocked. 

So I went over the curtain rod area to see what they had, and since the span is right at 12', I didn't think I'd find anything.  But -- then I saw this rod with built in clips with wheeled runners ---

and the center bracket holder was open on the bottom -- score!  exactly what I needed!

so now I can put my two panels on one side, one on the other, and when I need to, they roll easily right across the entire area.

These panels are from Ikea, and they originally had tab tops, but since these rods have clips, I cut and re-sewed the tops to a plain hem, then finally hemmed the bottoms to fit.  I've had these panels for 3 years unhemmed, so it's nice to see them all finished.  I do really like the curtains, and they're a great deal at 19.99 per panel.  I just didn't want to have to buy a third just so I could meet the sets in the center.

Another sewing project this week was to re-do the bench seat in the kitchen. I'd gotten this great fabric at Mood while I was in NY, but once i got the cushion covered, it was just too much.  I love the fabric and I will make pillows for my sofa or another area with it, but it wasn't working in the kitchen. So I was out and found this fabric with a busy, tapestry look that had the same greens as the wall in it, and I make a replacement cover for the cushion.  I like it so much better --

So there it is - all ready for company!  Next post will likely have an abundance of grandson pictures!

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