Monday, June 13, 2016

Sift My Thrift - The Big Reno Part 3

The Big Reno Part 3:

If you've been following, or just popping in, My hubby and I decided to add a new bedroom without adding square footage to our home by downsizing our master bedroom and bath.  We kept both, but just scaled it down.  I'm so glad we did and thankful that we've been able to do it.  Again, when I went searching online for some inspiration on this subject, I couldn't find much of anything.  So here's my take if your on the search too.  : )

Okay so this has been a long time coming, but its pretty much done aside from a few touches!!!
Aside from my horrendous photos, I hope this post helps you if you are trying to figure a way to add another room like we did.

The tour begins with the master bedroom:

 I wanted to put up a gallery of sorts by taking random framed art and some of my own pieces from way back, and grouping them together.  It took a little while to figure out just where.  I ended up choosing a spot where I knew that I wouldn't/couldn't put my headboard.  Below are the pictures stacked on the floor waiting for their 'official' location.

Here are a few of them close up.  As you can see they are just random pieces.

I got this one in a re-gift type event/party.  I really liked the black/grey colors and the simplicity of it.

These are just post card photos from Ikea.

My sister bought a furnished home in Mississippi and she didn't want the fish art so she just gave it to me.  Sometimes it's an added bonus when you and your sister's tastes don't jive.

I made these block art prints in an art class at some point in my life.

This is a crayon/wax scraping art piece I did.  I don't know when.  Just thought it was modern enough to work with the other stuff.

This is one that a very talented family member painted.  It was hanging in my husbands grandparents home not long ago.  It is sentimental in that way and a very classic and beautiful piece.
Here they are in their new spot on the wall.

This is the new closet area.  This made out of three upper kitchen cabinets that we found at a closeout type place.  They were med brown wooden cabinets that we painted white.  There is a regular closet that faces it on the other side (my closet).  My hubby's closet isn't pictured but it is on the wall close to the foot of our bed.

Here's a quick view of the before:

The Master Bath

 Long and Narrow.  Very narrow, but it works.  The mirror we got off of craigslist for 20.00  My Mother and Father in law were headed to the city so they volunteered to get it for me.  I didn't realize it was at the other end of the city, so they had to drive out of their way.  Big oops on my part.  Big thanks to the parents.  We reused our toilet and pedestal sinks from the old bathroom.  The little table between the pedestals was from my husbasnd's grand parents home.

We finally finished the homemade linen cabinet.  I tried to get a full photo of it, but it was hard to do since the room is so narrow.  I had to take a photo through the pocket door to get this shot.  Again, those are actually two kitchen cabinet uppers that we stacked and then added trim and legs, and then painted.  Hubby cut out two of the door panels and added glass to the top cabinet.  I'm really proud of him.  He did a great job.

Here's the very appreciated high window.  You couldn't imagine the amount of light it lets in.  You can even see a cloud or two float by every so often.  : )  I can't believe he found the window for only 10.00 at our local peddler's mall.  So thankful for that.

The multipurpose room (currently the nursery):

 I know the walls are a little bland, but I plan to add some art soon I hope.

Iggy, Inky and I painted some gold triangles in a random pattern on just this wall to add something fun to the room.

I found the wishbone fabric at our local fabric store.  It just seemed neat and whimsical with its sketched look.  I sewed a little duvet cover mainly for looks, but later I'm sure Baby Wex will snuggle underneath it.

 This is the view looking from the dining/living room into the nursery.  Why glass?  Well, because it's a multipurpose room.  It's meant to start off as a nursery, then turn into a school room and then later into our attached master office.  I like that the glass gives the illusion of more space in the dining/living room.  Your eye keeps moving beyond the wall/door.  We have no problems so far with the glass door and the baby being able to see out during nap time/ bedtime, but she is still in a crib.  We'll see what happens when it becomes a toddler bed and she can get up and peep out.c : (  Continuing the same flooring into that rooms helps in the same way as well I think.  It will make more sense when the room becomes the schoolroom or office.  I found it to be useful in all three setups to have access to the master bathroom.  A lock on the bathroom side helps with privacy.

 The view from the nursery window.  So glad to get to finally take advantage of the view of our flowers.  This used to be the window right in front of our master bathtub.   The window used to ALWAYS be closed, but now I just love to see what's out there.
Iggy helped me to make this critter just before Baby Wex was born.  Now she perches on the changing table.

When in doubt in adding some whimsy/modern touches on a small budget, visit Ikea.  I don't like to Ikea-fy my whole house.  That can get a little Ikea-overwhelming, BUT, a little here and there really does pack a punch.  In this room I added from Ikea, 2 throws: black and white - stole from my living room and beige, a black and white round rug, faux sheep skin rug, a beige area rug and an Ikea pendant light.  Really fun stuff!

I'll post one more time when I finally get some art on the wall

Thanks for sifting my thrift!


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Sift My Thrift - The little BIG Reno Part 2

Romans 8:28
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Adding a Room but not Square Footage (cont.):

Ok, so here where we are:

Demo - check
Electrical - check
Plumbing - check
Insulation - check
Walls built - check
Drywall - check
Walls painted - check
Tile work - check
Wood flooring - check
Doors and Trim - not yet
Paint and install kitchen cabinet uppers in bathroom and room niche for extra storage - not yet
Move in - Sigh

We were originally going to just put wood down in the new multipurpose space and then put the old carpet back down in the smaller master area.  At the price that we were getting the 'cull' grade wood, we decided to just chuck the carpet idea (which we would have had to pay a price to have it reinstalled) for the master area.  So we put wood down in both areas.  The deal with cull grade wood is that it is the bottom of the barrel, if it were any worse it would be good for only wood chips wood.  So you have to pick through it and strategically place each piece (good pieces in view, bad pieces in closets and such).  Then you putty all the knot holes and cracks, sand, then poly, then lightly hand sand, poly, lightly hand sand again, then put a final coat of poly.  Done.  Sounds fast and easy in print, but not so.  Actually, it ends up being a very pretty floor with a lot of great character - just a lot of work.  Here it is laid.

Here is the nursery/multipurpose room floor completed.

 Here is our master bedroom floor looking from the living area into the room.

 Here is the master bath almost finished.  The tile and paint are done.  We just need to assemble, paint and trim the cabinet for storage.  We used some discounted kitchen cabinet uppers stacked since we are working with a very narrow space.  You can only barely see one the cabinets in the floor in this photo.  We will be adding legs to it and trimming it out as well. The box in the floor is our glass door that is going from the dining area into the nursery/multipurpose space.

Here is the closet niche???  Opposite of it is one of our master closets (very small).  We have one more closet to match its smallness in the main part of the master bedroom.  I knew we would be losing quite a bit of our closet space in the reno so my solution was to include a niche of sorts so we could use it somehow as closet storage.  We decided again to use the discounted kitchen cabinet uppers stacked to accomplish this. We plan to stack them 3 high,  I had a 14 inch niche to work with and the cabinets are 13 inches deep including the doors, so whew!  I know they are narrow so they'll be used for folded jeans, shirts, skirts, night clothes and such.  We are going to paint them white and trim it out to look built in.

Until next time......


Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Sift My Thrift - The Little BIG Reno Part 1

Romans 8:28
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Adding a Room but not Square Footage

I was talking earlier about our recent renovation project (adding another room).  I guess I'll continue the discussion here.  This project all came about because we needed another room for either A) The Baby, or B) A classroom if we give the baby the current classroom.  Then later when the children no longer need a classroom, we can have a dedicated office.  It was just an incey wincey lil' ole project.  It was just adding another wall and a door right?  Wrongo. Wow, we have been sleeping in the old dining room for I don't know how long now.  I'm kinda getting used to it.  Kinda. 

There's nothing like dining room overhead lighting and the front door to say, "Top of the mornin' to ya!" 

The baby's crib is at our feet.  Our clothes and room things are scattered about around the house.  This little ole reno has become quite the BIG project.  I am very proud of my husband who has taken on this endeavor.  I am surprised at what he knows how to do, not being one trained in carpentry.  Are men just born that way?  I was in the 'Facilities' department where I used to work.  It took a lot of questions and curiosity on my part to get a good grasp on 'manly know-how'.  And now that I've been a stay at home mom for some time, I have forgotten much of it.  He has also had such great and very appreciated help from his uncle and cousins who are carpenters.  It brings a lot of peace of mind to the whole thing.

Next?  Finish wiring for electric and speakers.  Then, our tub needs to be put in place.  Then, FINALLY, drywall.  Can't wait for this step.

In the meantime, I 
  1. scour through craigslist for cabinets to put together and paint to make some storage for the bathroom and for a niche in our closet area.  
  2. have to look around for the best deals on lighting.     
  3. pick out paint for our bedroom, bathroom and the new room
  4. pick out tile for the bathroom
  5. keep in the back of my mind that we sold our dining table set and need to look for a replacement sometime.
Side note: I am primarily blogging about this because when I went to search the internet about such projects, I could find, well, just about nothing on the subject of adding another room, but not more square footage since we were merely cutting back on our master bedroom and bath to make the extra room.  So this is just something for someone out there who is searching for someone who has done this before.  Boy that was a tongue twister!  I might just pin this on pinterest just to get it out there.  Don't get me wrong.  I don't think this is just such a spectacular thing that everyone wants to know about it.  I just remember how frustrated I was not to be able to find anyone who could provide pictures and details about their own similar reno.  How many times have I searched the internet for ideas and gleaned so its about time I helped someone else.

Thanks for reading!  

Monday, December 30, 2013

And She's Here!

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.  

James 1:17

Our newest addition is finally here!  Whew!  As I've said before, pregnancy + Marsha = one big bag of problems.  Alas, when the carrying is over and the baby is here, all pretty much goes back to normal, which I am most grateful for!  It seems to take about 4 weeks of newborn life to get us into the swing of things - to a degree.  That is, we are functioning without tears, and the lack of sleep is no longer causing us to do strange things. 

I had her natural (I had an epi on my other two).  Why you say?  Our new insurance did not cover maternity at all and I didn't want to pay for it.  When I researched the cost of an epi, it blew my mind and would have really punched us a big one in the pocket book.  I also had a slight curiosity about what it was like to have a baby without meds.  Call me crazy.  Those two things combined made my decision.  I thank the very good Lord, He brought me through it!  I must say it was extremely fast and I barely made it to the hospital.  I was praying good and loud towards the end and no one could have been confused as to whether I was a Christian or not at that point.  So now what?  Preparing for the next school year and getting my house back in order.

Baby here.  Need more space.

I posted earlier about wanting an eat in kitchen.  Well, that hasn't happened.  As I said.  I was dreaming.  BUT we did end up selling our humongadocious dining table and chairs so we could 'make' a smaller one that is more suitable for our home.  I mean, the table wasn't too big for the space that it was in, I just wanted to use that space for something more productive for our family.  I wanted more living space.  Sooooooooo.  We ended up borrowing a smaller table from my mother in law in order to move our dining space 'against' the island.  It's working.  We are currently using stools and a junior chair for chairs, but I'm happy knowing that my plan for more space is panning out.  Sorta.  It's still in the works. 

NOW.  Hubby and I were discussing where on earth (or in our home to be exact) would we put our new baby.  So far, the trend has been to keep the baby in our room for a year and then move her out.  Well, we are at the half mark and we have yet to find somewhere to put her.  One of our bedrooms is the school room and the other two girls share a bedroom (packed in there tightly already).  I pitched him an idea.  Why not reduce our master bedroom and bath to 'create' another room.  It wouldn't be adding square footage, just walls a few doors and 'some other things'.  If he did most of the work himself, then we could save on labor.

Here's the master as it is now.  I think my hubby used some sort of panning photo setting to get the whole room in the photo.  You can see my side of the closet going towards our bathroom.

Here's the master bath as it is now (or was).  And Inky being a ham.  Again with the panning photo setting so the bathroom looks wierdly bent.

History on our Master Room and Bath:

I normally call it our Master Suite.  I have to snicker at myself because it sounds, well, kinda weird to say it.  It's not really a suite.  We live in a subdivision of smaller homes.  We tried to make the most of our space by having an open concept house (the main areas are all open to each other).  However, my husband wanted a 'wing' of the house to be dedicated to the Master bed/bath (we had 'getting ready to be hitched - no kids' syndrome at that time).  He and I had seen waaaaaaay to many homearoma homes.  Only, the problem is that our house is small to begin with.  So when we built our home, we ended up squeezing the life out of the other rooms in the house to have a larger than necessary master bedroom and bath that we seldom use, well, because its not a 'living' space.  We spend most of our time in the living room with our kids, which I'd say most people do.  So why not chop out the excess and squeeze in another small room?  Hey, that's my question too! 

The plan has come to fruition and we have torn out our master bath.  We sold the large jetted tub Yay! (hardly ever used it.  We had to make sure we weren't running other appliances to have enough hot water to fill it).  The closets have been demo'd.  Yes, we will be downsizing those too.  That is my one regret in the whole thing.  We will still, though, have two separate closets in the end.  Here is the area demo'd.  I'll be glad to have this finished and our bed moved back into our bedroom where we belong instead of in our old dining space.

When we divided the space to make room for the extra room, we lost the window to our bathroom.  So hubby decided to add one up high in the newly vaulted area.  The day that we absolutely needed a window, my hubby prayerfully went to the peddlers mall of all places and found this window for $10.  What a blessing!  

This is a view into our Master Bathroom.  It will be very narrow, but still workable.  The window on the vaulted ceiling is unseen in this photo, but is to the upper right.

This is a view from the new bedroom/classroom/office space.  We are looking toward the closet door.  The pocket door going into the Master Bath is to the left.  This room is vaulted as well.  The door exiting the room into the living area will be to the right.

My reasons for having a door going from this room into the main living area (used to be the dining area) and also having a door leading into our Master Bath area make sense for us.  We are hoping this space will work several different ways for us, in the different seasons of our life and also, if we move, the room can be very versatile for the market.  First, we plan to use this room as a nursery.  The connected bathroom will make it easier for bathing the baby and also for washing hands after diapering and so on.  Also, we can keep a close eye on the baby.  Later when the little one gets a little older, we can move her to the other room and turn this space into a classroom.  Again the bathroom attached will make it easier on me with schooling and potty/potty training time.  Sharing the bathroom won't be an issue because while we school during the day (ie: use the potty during the day), we (my husband and I) will mostly need to use this bathroom early in the morning and at night.  Lastly, as the children get older we can turn this space once again into the Master suite with an attached office.

I'll post more photos when we get closer to finished!

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Sift my Thrift - Dream On - Kitchen

Titus 2:5 "To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home..."

I do feel it is the womans calling to make her home as useful as it can be - of course within her means.  Its her job to keep the house tidy and a haven of rest for her family as well as for herself (I'm not saying that I do this well.  I just feel this is what I should be doing and what I apire to do).  I know not all women feel the same way that I do, but this is me.  I do though wonder what is the balance between just dealing with the circumstances (making do with what you have) and taking action to organize your life better (making changes to have better flow of life for you and your family).  I'm sorry to say that I don't have that answer.  What comes to mind though is that you should not do what you cannot afford to do. 

I often think of the term 'Opportunity Cost' that I learned in college.  It was a facinating concept to me and still is.  It's basically taking one thing in life (whether it be monitary or not) and putting it on  one end of a see saw, and then putting something else on the other side.  For instance, putting 'time with children' on one side of the see saw and then putting 'volunteer overtime' on the other side.  If you lift the side of the overtime, it's costing you time with your children.  If you lift the side of your children, its costing you 'overtime' income.  So in my circumstances, the see saw would hold 'better home life' and 'saving money'.   

It has recently become my dream to have an EAT IN KITCHEN.  For Example, something like this:
I found this lovely at . 

Convenient.  Space saving.  Old Fashioned meets modern.  Wonderful! 

Now that we will be a family of 5 (soon) my mind has been going in overdrive on ways to make our house seem, well, bigger, more useful to us.  Right now we have an open house plan (kitchen flows into living room, and living room flows into dining room.  In that order.).  I've seen photos of homes like the one above where they have simply put the kitchen table in the kitchen (instead of a bar or island).  Genius!

Right now we have an island that houses our cook top and microwave.  We as a family NEVER use it as a sit down place, unless we have people over and we all stand around and talk mostlly. 

Note:  All these photos of my home are AFTER I cleaned.  It normally is not this picked up. 

Here is a photo of the said location:

And here:

I must say that it is nice, but not space saving.

At the same time, most people NEVER make it over to our Kitchen/Dining table.  The table and the area is pretty much neglected.  Why not put a table in the kitchen instead?  We can all talk around that table just as much as the island.  Actually, I think people might just be inclined to sit.  It can also be used as a prep area just as the island is used now.  Why not?  In fact, I only use the little square of space to the left of the cooktop for prep.  If I can keep the chairs low, then using the table to prepare meals could be extremely useful.  And think of all that time savings.  I can't tell you how many treks I make from kitchen to dining area for one single meal.  First, get the glasses to the table.  Two hands, 4 glasses equals two trips.  Then the plates.  Same thing.  Then the condiments.  What?  Inky wants a refill?  Be right back!  Oops, more napkins.  Well, here goes another trip.  Woops, the breads done, I'll get it!  Whew!  Dinners over.  Now, it's the same back and forth trips in reverse.  Having a kitchen table right in the kitchen is sounding better all the time, right?  I suppose if my children were older, then I might not be feeling the workload as much (delegation), but right now, it's rather inconvenient.  Yes, I could flip flop the living area with the dining area.  I've tried it.  It doesn't work well.   The dining area is smaller than the living so its a bit awkward.  Also, our corner cabinet in the living area does not fit in the smaller dining space.

Here's a view from our kitchen into the living area

And here are some shots to show how the living room transitions into the dining area.  It's kinda like an L shape.  Sorry bout the towels on the dining room chairs.  That's just life with small children.  :  )   


Here's a view from the dining area into the kitchen:

What else would we be gaining if we put a table in place of our island?  Another room!  Two separate, yet together, living spaces.  I think it would give us a sense of transition from one space to the next, but also be open so as to feel connected.  I'm thinking a little round coffee table with two comfy chairs, maybe even a window bench and a wall of shelves with a built in mini desk for a laptop.  Under the desk could be one or two little tuck away stools (I have these already).  The shelves could be for books, nicknacks, storage for presentable kitchen overflow.  It could be a reading/coffee sipping/chit chat space.   When you pull all the seating together (stools, chairs, and bench) you've got 5 seats around a little round coffee table. 

The look is kinda like this:


combined with this:

I can't say that these two photos meet exactly what I have in my mind, but if you take the white wall shelving, and add the two small but comfy chairs in the photo above this one and add the few things I wrote about, it's just about right.  Oh and by the way, that rug is divine!

Ok, ok, so I'll have to milk craigslist for all its worth to even consider such a space.  A girl can dream right?  

Hmmm.  Where to put the cooktop and microwave.   

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Homeschooling Adventures - Baby on the way = delay, delay, delay

Proverbs 17:22 - A merry heart doeth good [like] a medicine...

Well, hello there!  Yes, it's been a while and no I've not been away - well not physically that is.  Mentally, I've been skinny, on some beach, not feeling like puke.  Welp, pregnancy is what it has always been for me, so I guess I can say that I've been preoccupied with sick spells of various kinds.  I'M BACK!  Sorta.  Anywho, I'm back for now to squeeze in a little belated typie.

A really, really late Christmas post.

I found a great/funny/interesting blogger  She is a fellow homeschooler that loves to write about the quirks of family life among other things.  After I read some of her posts I can really say, "Whew, it's not just me."  Anyway, she wanted to know if some of her blog friends would like to do a Christmas ornament exchange.  I quickly agreed.  Sounded fun.  Was fun!  It was a great idea and the girls and I decided to participate.  The fact that she and her family were located in a different part of the country made it even more interesting.  It turned out to be a small geography lesson for my kingergartener.

Here's the problem.  I asked hubby to take a photo with his cool picture taking iphone.  Seriously, I think it takes better pictures than our family camera.  He did, but somehow between then, sickness, and now, I've been unable to locate the picture of Sarah's ornament that she sent us.  It was ADORABLE.  My daughter even said she thought it looked like herself.  It was a sweet little girl dressed up for some snowplay.  We loved it and my littlest girl placed it right on the front side of the tree!  When I locate our photo, I'll post it!  I ended up finding a whitewashed church ornament.  It just struck me and I sent it on over.

Thanks for the great idea Sarah!!! 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Homeschooling Adventure: The Reality of Teaching

Romans 8:28 - And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to [his] purpose.

Teaching/homeschooling is great (most times).  It's the organization in life that comes with rising early, staying on time, marking off your list of things to do today in class, that keeps my clock ticking (my feeling like things are going well with school 'clock' that is).  BUT, what do you do when the teacher is sick.  Hmmmm. 

As I've said before, we are now expecting our third child (seems wierd to hear myself say such things) and as I've anticipated, I am sick all the time.  Not throwing up constantly or anything like that.  It's like rotating sickness.  When one sickness subsides, another one in some other form takes over.  I may be sick to my stomach for a while, then I have a bad headache, then I have a sore throat, next I'm itchy all over (something I suffered with in my last pregnancy as well).  Well, it just wears you out and it's a guessing game as to which one(s) will happen today.  On a positive note, I have had some strangely 'no pain' days that have thrown me for a loop too.  I've relished in those days.  God must have just decided that I needed a break and simply passed one down to me.  I guess when Eve messed up, she really messed up bad, and well, now things are difficult for all of us women that 'bring' forth children.

So in saying all that, what to do when you are sick/pregnant???

So far, I've had to:
  1. Declare 'no school' for some days. 
  2. Delay school for a few hours.  We've simply started later in the day. 
  3. Bring in the Subs. Believe it or not, I do have substitute teachers that will come in at times and take care of school for me when I'm not feeling well, or even 'just because' to give me a little break.  Sweet.  There are definate blessings that come with living close to both parents and also when those parents love to be a part of our lives so much.  My hubby and I were designed to want/need our parents close by.  Don't get me wrong.  That does not mean our other siblings do not love our parents.  Actually, they love them just the same.  They just were designed a little different.  Like my sister for instance.  She was born with a travel bag on her shoulder and "independance" monogrammed on the bag.  She still needs our parents and their love, BUT distance doesn't bother her so much.  It would me, however.  Even when our parents go away on vacation, it bothers me until they get back home.  It would bother me even if I would not have seen them on the days that they would have been gone.  It's just knowing that they are away.  Funny how kids can be raised in the same home, but be so different.  Sorry for that rabbit trail.
So what is the verdict for today?  Headache = 2 hour delay in our school schedule.  I don't like doing it, but I do like that it is an option.

How do you handle home-life/homeschool-life when you are sick?

Thanks for reading.