Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Its Pure Craziness!!

This last week has been nothing short of crazy.   My husband has been on the rampage to check some projects off the never ending, ridiculously long list of things we want to eventually accomplish to make our house really OURS!!  While I can GREATLY appreciate his hard work and determination to get things done,  working on projects around the holidays has been quite the challenge.    In short, just imagine your doing all your usual holiday rituals, holiday shopping, gift wrapping, decorating the inside and outside of your home, baking Christmas cookies, having family pictures taken for Christmas cards, creating Christmas cards, mailing Christmas cards and packages, going to parties, planning to host your own combined family gathering this weekend and preparing for the arrival of your mother in law who is coming to stay with you for a month, plus your normal  home management items; laundry, cleaning, grocery shopping, cooking, homework with the kids, taking the kids everywhere (Yup its hockey season again!), Ballet, scouts add in there a new part time job I've just started :-), a kid with the stomach bug, two people with colds, and loosing three teeth to this mess....now completely rip up your house into a construction zone.....I'm sure you get the idea....CRAZINESS!

So to try and keep up with all our new projects I have a bunch of pictures.  Unfortunately its kind of a gloomy day today so I tried to take them with flash, without flash, with lights on, with lights off, standing on my head etc. to see if I could get something that somewhat represents the look of the project I'm photographing.  So hang in there with me and I'll try to explain as we go.....

 Last week my husband installed wainscoting.  This week he painted the powder room.  We were debating a couple colors and at the last minute we decided to just paint it  with a can of paint we had from our old house (our old dining room was this color).  I'm glad we tried that old paint as I LOVE ho w it turned out....very soothing.

  The living room/kitchen was a HUGE paint project that my husband made look pretty easy.  The tricky part was picking out a paint we  would love to look at alot and that matched our odd colored couches, and  the counter tops and cabinets in the kitchen.  This color seemed to work great for both....a bit of a chameleon    color though....sometimes it looks mossy, sometimes, tan, sometimes a goldish hue.....we are happy with it though.

 The morning room has been a huge debate.  Originally we were going to do an accent wall in blue, then we were just going to paint it the same color as the kitchen/living room, then on the spur of the moment I said lets try this color which turned out to be a little darker than we thought but we think it pairs very well with the kitchen and  we like that it really has a different color....broke up all that was going on in the other rooms so it feels completely on its own.

 OH yah....since we opted out of getting a fireplace and I can't remember where I hung our stockings last year, this year I put them at the  top  of the stairs near the bedrooms.  I think they give the upstairs a little festive look and I've gotten quite a few compliments from family that has visited.  If you are building now....something I may have considered is putting an electrical outlet next to the linen closet.  I would have loved to  string the garland all the way around and added   some lights to it....would have been very pretty.....but I didn't think of that when we were building.  Another  place I would have considered adding an outlet is above the  kitchen cabinets.....again would have been nice to put some garland above there and some lights, maybe you have one of those ceramic Christmas villages that would look cute above the cabinets.......anyways just an after thought.

 Ahhhhhh...my place of peace and relaxation...our master bedroom!  We painted our bedroom in our last house this color just before we moved and loved it.....It really feels like a spa when I walk in and I just melt leaving all my cares someplace near the laundry room.

  with flash this time.   Can't wait to  put in our back splash.......we have some tiles picked out now just need to  get some time to install it......I think it will be beautiful when all is said and done.
 with flash...

 again with flash
So here are my colors together.... for those interested in checking them out here is the list:
bathroom-benjamin moore- woodlawn blue
kitchen/living room- olympic- Earthy Cane
Morning Room-valspar-Filoli Antique Lace
Spa...I mean master bedroom-Martha Stewart Living-Tidewater

Well folks....I've still got a bunch to blog about but hopefully this will get me through the next few days.  Hope you all are enjoying your homes and enjoying the holiday season.....
I'll be blogging soon again so stay posted!!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

A little cottage style....

Where are all my blogging Ryan Homes friends?  I'm hoping you are all just busy preparing for the holidays and enjoying time in your new homes with family and friends.  I was surprised I didn't get more guesses to the mystery project photo in my last blog.  Those of you who replied though I am very happy and thankful you took a peak at our blog and made a great guess.  Well now to reveal the big mystery......

We put wainscoting in our mud area and powder room.    I have to say this area takes a beating in our house.  With a busy schedule and three little ones running everywhere I'm hopeful this wainscoting will provide a little protection on our walls, make them much easier to clean, and I LOVE the style and look they bring to our home.  I just feel so much more welcomed when I walk into the mud area after a crazy day.  I think my husband did a great job installing it and he did it fairly quickly I must say.  He did mention it was a bit of a pain because of all the corners and some of the walls aren't as square as you would hope or they appear to be and that posed a bit of a challenge.....but we both agree we love how it turned out.  Now the question is what color should we paint the top wall portions?  Well I've been busy with my paint swatches checking them out in different lights and coordinating with the other colors I have picked out so hopefully soon I'll have my decisions made and some paint to finish these areas off.  So take a look at the photos below and let me know what you think....

Thursday, November 29, 2012


I have mentioned in previous posts what limited space we had in our last kitchen.....quite a big change from our new kitchen......have I told you before how much I LOVE our new kitchen?  I have so much space now its ridiculous but somehow I keep looking for places to put odds and ends that just don't seem to fit in any particular place.  Spices always seem to be a big challenge.  Initially I tried using the drawer next to the stove but that didn't seem very convenient and some jars were too large to fit.  Then I tried the cabinet next to the stove but then I found my self constantly pawing through everything and making a mess just to find the right spice.  So of course my next step was the lazy Susan which was also a failure in multiple ways.  So I reverted back to what we did in our old house and it has been awesome!   I was very hesitant to put holes in our doors but honestly this system has worked very well for us now in two homes so I thought I should share.  We bought one of those attached to the door storage shelves you can purchase at any big box store and  filled it to the brim with all our spices.  It also holds can goods, bottles of sauces, wines...whatever you need very well.  Its extremely durable and secure.  The nice thing is there are multiple sizes of the shelves so you could buy smaller ones or larger ones to fulfill your needs and place however many you need/want on the door and various heights to fit the items you want to store.  We just like using this size since it holds just about anything and gives us the exact amount of space we need to hold the giant amount of spices we use.  
One last note on our pantry, we also put a small hook on the inside of our pantry wall to store some aprons and such.  I have a lot of aprons for myself and the kids but you would never know unless you really looked in the pantry.  They stay neatly tucked away and I never find myself fighting to get to them or struggling to get things stored near them....its been another small thing thats made a big difference in our kitchen uses/needs.
So below are some pictures displaying our spice shelves and our apron hook.  Hope perhaps these ideas will help some of you with your spice storage dilemmas. 

 So I can also tell you my husband has been VERY busy the last week or so working on some projects.  He has painted yet another room that I LOVE how it has turned out, and I'll give you a photo hint of the other project which we will be revealing very soon.....can you guess what or where it is?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

And there is Color.....FINALLY!!!

Since before this house was completed I have been picking paint.....I am a person who needs color in her life so needless to say these white walls have felt like a prison for way too long (like over 400 days....but whose counting).  We have finally painted our first room and I can't be more excited!! We picked the guest room since it would be the least bothersome and disruptive to our daily lives and it was a fairly easy and quick room to paint.  I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE how it turned out.   For those who are curious,  the color is Olympic brand-Toffee Crunch.  Initially we tried to color match it to another paint brand but it just had an uncomfortable hue to it......and knowing our past with "hue" issues (see our past blog about the pink siding), we thought better stick to the actual paint brand and quite honestly  the paint seems pretty good.    An y way I think the color really fit the style and comfort of the room and just finally makes it feel complete.  Now all we have left to do is make some matching toss pillows for the bed and chair and paint the dresser black to match the other items in the room.   Hopefully our guest room will make all our guests feel at home when they come to visit. 

 taking bedroom pictures is tough...but hopefully you get the idea!

So now with one room done we are actually on to the next and will be quite busy over the next few months finally putting some paint on these walls and making our house our home.   Of course we'll be keeping you all posted of our progress........

Friday, October 5, 2012

They Fit!!

Thankfully between the garage sale we had this summer and the completion of the new shed we were able to clear out our garage to use it for its intended purpose....our cars!!!  This is the first time we have actually used our garage to house both cars AND THEY FIT!!!   We recently traded in our car for a new minivan and were very surprised that not only do two vehicles fit in the garage but two minivans  fit in the garage and with room to spare.  I'm hoping this means this year we won't be de-icing any vehicles or dragging kids in and out of slushy, muddy, snow to get to and from the car.

Also, just thought we would post a picture to give you a hint of what other new updates will be coming soon.....

.....stay tuned!!!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Happy Anniversary!!

One year ago today at 11am we were given the greatest gift....the keys to our brand new home!!  This year has been one of adventure, change, a whole lot of laughter and wonderful memories made.  We love our house and are so thankful Ryan homes made it possible for us to live in such a beautiful wonderful home that has brought us so many happy blessings in our life!!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

So many updates and not enough time to blog

To say the least this summer has been flying by.  We have been CRAZY busy all summer between kid functions, updates, planning/preparing for events, travelling, and you name it we've probably been doing it!!   I have a bunch of  updates but just haven't had a minute to post about them until now.  So I'm happy to share with you some of the  things we've been working on.

Like all projects, it takes at least twice as long as you anticipate it will take to complete.  The shed is just this project.   My husband has done a wonderful job designing and building this shed and didn't cut any corners.....its beautiful!!  We've actually received many compliments on it from our neighbors and all have been very impressed with the craftsmanship.   So below are a couple of pictures of the shed as it stands today, but believe it or not its still not completely done.  My husband still has to build some shelves and  storage inside,  complete the finishing details, build and attach the flower boxes beneath the little windows, and of course add some landscaping but for the moment its cute and functional.  I am very excited that the shed will finally free up a little extra space in our garage!!


As of this week we finally got a new couch to somewhat complete our "little living room" as we call it, but its the formal living room located at the front of the  Ravenna Model.    So far I'm very happy with the look we are going for, I'm just very eager to get some paint on those walls!!!

My mother in law is also staying with us this week so  in the past couple weeks we have worked pretty hard to make the guest bedroom a little more comfortable and guest friendly.  I have to say its now one of my favorite rooms in our house.  It just makes me smile when I peak in...like a little vacation I guess.  The pictures really don't do this room justice.  Again I can't wait to finally get some paint on the walls, and I still have some finishing touches I need to take care of (i.e. custom pillows for the bed and chair, paint the dresser etc.) but for the most part I am very happy with how it is turning out.

We  finally got some stools for the gourmet island as well as behind the bar like area separating the kitchen and the morning room.  I actually ordered them from Target.com when they were on sale for a ridiculously great price several months ago and LOVE them!!  They are very sturdy and have held up great to the daily abuse of three little kids as well as adults using them all the time.  Everyone has also commented about how surprisingly comfy they are and  I love how they store under the counter so we aren't always moving them or having to scoot around them.  I highly recommend them if you are searching for some stools for your new homes. (don't mind the mess in our kitchen--we had our twin sons birthday party last night and haven't   fully recovered yet).

So while the kids rooms have lacked a lot of imagination and fun until we can finally paint, I do have one picture of our son's room as my husband just  finished painting the dressers for their new room.  I'm so glad they finally have a place to put all their clothes instead of cramming them into one little dresser (the one thats now in the guest room) and the boys seem to be very happy with them as well.

When the t  wins were babies we had purchased  a nice solid wood dining set for our kitchen in our old house.  As new parents we definitely didn't anticipate the abuse this table would eventually endure.    Last summer we lived in a frat house after we sold our last home and our new home wasn't yet completed.   Literally the day we moved into our new home we considered leaving or throwing away this table as it was the most hideous, damaged, table you have every seen and we thought we would just buy a new one for our new house.  We decided to bring it with us to use until we bought the new table.  Boy am I glad we made that decision now.  I am so lucky and thankful my husband is so handy.  He decided to take a chance and see what he could do to refinish the table.   He thought the worst he could do was ruin it more which wasn't a big deal since we planned on buying a new one anyways......while he wasn't overly happy with the results I think he did a fabulous job and it looks beautiful......a table I'm now  very proud and happy to display in our home.  It looks nearly new and I think will give us many more years of use, or at least until our kids get through the destructive phase anyways! (It looks much better in the morning room---its currently in our dining room as we move our dining room table into the morning room when we have parties as it can seat 12-14 people versus the 6-8 our kitchen table usually seats).

Unfortunately we still haven't had a moment to get any landscaping done :-(   That was the one project I was really wanting to complete this year and now it doesn't look like we'll be able to get it done before the end of summer!! I'm  hoping there is still a small chance we can get something in the ground before winter.

A few posts ago I mentioned the terrible noise our siding was making on windy nights.  At our 10 month inspection we mentioned this and Ryan tightened up the siding a bit and I am happy to report the noise is gone!!!  So happy I can finally get some good nights of rest without it sounding like giant creatures coming through the wall behind our bed!!

Next week Ryan will be completing our 1 year drywall inspection.  I am overly excited about this so we can finally get some personality and colors on our walls!!  

Last week, Ryan mowed the lot behind our house which will be the back yard of the new house to be built on the corner.  Come to find out they are going to build a new model home on that lot.  I am actually very excited about this as it will have all the bells and whistles,  be a nicely landscaped lot, and provide some privacy from the road.   Just the other day they staked out the house and today they dropped off the  egress window supplies.   Shall be exciting to see  the developments in the upcoming weeks!!

Well  I continue to enjoy all your updates, pictures, and ideas.  Hopefully you all are having a great summer and enjoying your new homes.