Finally - A Functional Play Room!

It's a miracle! I don't LOATHE our play room anymore. Hip hip hooray!

Ever since moving into the new house in March after selling our last mini house, this room has been in heavy use... by everyone except me. We hooked up the TV and video game console within the first few hours of ownership (priorities, right?), and of course, threw every last toy in there on it's bare floor and crammed all that would fit within the closet.

It was chaos, you know? The only good point to it was that we (and by we, I mean "I") didn't have to look at the disorganization in the living areas - but other than that, entering the room-of-toys was a miserable experience. The (albeit pretty) hardwood floor and (not so pretty) built-in that was already in place felt cold and horrible. 


Our ultimate plan is to completely change everything about this space (floors, move the built-in to the other side of the room and change it up, and then of course, paint!), but we needed a temporary solution to get us through to that point.

So what's a gal to do when the play room isn't her top priority on the "home improvement money spending" list? Shop the house! We hung the kids' initials up from the old nursery and bedroom over the make-shift daybed (two end caps to these beds from IKEA), and then put a cheap rug in there from Target - BOOM: instant coziness!

(My) Dog Crate of DREAMS!

I'm obsessed with my dog... but the hardware that came with him when we adopted Snow two years ago? Not so much. When he was 9 weeks old, it was estimated that he would eventually weigh in at 50 pounds - pretty large, right?! So we got him one of those giant dog crates. Well, now that he's 85+ pounds, that large crate was a good buy - BUT IT WAS JUST SO UGLY!

SO UGLY. Our newest DIY though? IT MAKES MY HEART SING:


But back to the ugly crate. From day 1 I couldn't stand the big metal, space user-upper, but it's usefulness was undeniable. (I know that a ton of people out there are against crates - to each his own! I understand the merits of both using one and foregoing. With Snow being our first dog ever, we turned to our friends and family for advice - all of which use crates and seem to be happy with them. So that's what we did! Both Snow and us have always enjoyed his little "room.")

Ya win some, ya lose some - diy antiqued mirror gallery wall

I mean... I guess this wasn't a TOTAL loss - it doesn't look THAT bad. And in fact, post-editing (bahaha that's quite the disclaimer, isn't it? "Once edited, they don't look that bad!"), I actually kind of like them a tiny bit more...

But it for sure wasn't what I was expecting baha! I had grand visions of a lustrous, gold framed, large scale gallery wall of mirrors - so lovely, right? So when I came into a bunch of giant goldies (literally from the '80's) at a garage sale for $2 each, I knew where those bad boys would end up: DIY'ed into antiqued, mirrored beauties.


I followed this tutorial by one of my FAVORITES, Jenny Komenda, and while the frames DID look antiqued, they're VERY, very dark when looking at them.

OUR FURNITURE IS IN A STORE!

Oh yeah, no big deal, I'm just over here still PINCHING MYSELF!

This was the biggest project Chad and I have taken on - in total it was two 10' tables, four 10' benches, one 7' arbor, one 9' arbor, one kid sized table and two kid sized benches - ELEVEN PIECES ALL TOGETHER!

When it was all said and done, we pretty much felt like the coolest humans on the face of planet earth (both of us were like "WE CAN DO ANYTHING! COME AT US, WORLD!").



It really boosted the ego that they wanted to "work with us" because this particular store is THE CUTEST LITTLE SHOP IN THE UNIVERSE. I mean, look at it!

BIG baby gate, babay!

So we know we're not mavericks of design with this thing, but what a rad addition it is! We're the proud new owners of a GIANT baby gate, much to the happiness of my PEACE OF MIND.

I really shouldn't call this thing a "baby gate." It can keep large children, dogs and probably livestock from the upstairs, it's so solid and legit.


The baby gates I had for the older two kids were sad, plastic affairs - this thing is a beast in comparison. And it just looks sooooooo pretty in the wasteland that is the front of our house (read: zero furniture so far).

a little love for the garage

***ZERO editing has happened to these pictures because... kids. I just wanted to record what we've been up to these last 2 weekends without it taking me 50,000 years, ya dig?

I've been pretty dang lucky on the DIY front thus far - most of our projects revolve around things I want done... but Chad is the one who ends up doing the bulk of the work. (Have I mentioned that I LOVE HIM?) So after several projects around here, I seriously felt like he needed to do something for himself. (That sounds nobler than it really was)... I mean, who can say no to some legit storage in the space where I knew he'd want to work on: the garage?!

First he cleared out a massive "catch all" area along the right side of our 3 car garage. He then decided that him and Carter needed some serious storage for hockey gear - an open-air, mudroom type thing. So that's where he started!


Not bad, I'd say! I'll post a full "after" picture with all of their gear pegged on there. It actually looks super cool with everything all organized - if you're a hockey  mom, you KNOW how insane all the gear can get. So aside from the RIDICULOUSLY pungent smell of sweaty-ness, the whole thing has turned out awesome.

Next.... well this is where I feel like people think we're crazy. The previous owners had installed super legit cabinetry along two walls of the garage but... they just weren't working for us. We had stuffed a few things in there, but overall it just seemed dysfunctional. We wanted a place where we could place large bins and the standard sized cabinets weren't cutting it. So Chad stopped wasting time and just took the dang things off! We're really turning into "on the fly" DIYer's over here.

tint, be gone!

Well gosh dang, some projects just don't pack as much KAPOW in pictures, you know what I mean? BUT those ones sometimes end up making the biggest difference in our lives - LIKE THIS PARTICULAR UNDERTAKING WE DID ON A WHIM LAST WEEK!

There was a DARK tint on the windows of this house - and I mean MIDNIGHT LEVEL, OUTER SPACE INTENSE DARK. When we first moved in though, although it felt closed-in, everyone kept telling us how nice and luxurious it was that we had this heat protection for the summers, and hey! It would protect the floors and furniture from the sun. All good things, right?

The only problem was, WE WERE THE ONES LIVING INSIDE THE DEPRESSING DARKNESS ALL DAY EVERYDAY!