Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The hardest decision of our lives

So, we couldn't afford to live in our house anymore. After 3 years, 2 new children and countless home improvements, we came to the difficult decision to leave our beloved home. What's worse is we reluctantly decided to move in with....... my husband's mother!!! I had so many reservations about this idea that Chris and I had to literally write down all the pros and cons of moving in with her. Ulimately what it came down to was that we no longer could afford our $700 a month rent payment and she needed help with her mortgage.

On the down side, I personally didn't want to move in with her. She's difficult to tolerate, her house is tiny and needed MUCH repair. My son would have to change schools, I would have to leave my finally matured garden, new fence my husband put up around the house, custom wood blinds and all the fabulous projects we did at our house.

But on the upside, she lives on a cul-de-sac, within walking distance of the school. There are many kids in the neighborhood that my kids can all play with. We also thought about as much as we like to do home improvements, we we would be sinking money into a house that would eventually be ours and not losing it into a rental like we were doing. Our monthly bills will significantly be reduced. We will be able to save money and afford to live.

All in all, finances are the major reason in our decision and I think we made a good one. So now we have our work cut out for us. Her house was in deep dispair. His grandmother and mother lived her for 30 years or so and smoked inside the house. Everything in the house was stained with nicotine. She agreed to smoke outside but we still have to paint the entire house and air it out. Shampoo the carpets and go through all the belongings of his grandmother who passed away last year. We're supposed to do all this and pack up our old house and be out in a month. Sounds like more than enough time but we have so much to do in Kim's house. Clean, kilz and paint. Phew!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Thrift store find!

Chris found this Henredon piece at a thrift store for 6 bucks! When he brought it home he painted it red. It's a little big for our space but I think it will do for now. My cat, Lola, really likes to chew on the finials. See the scratches?

Master bedroom

I can't believe Chris actually let me paint our bedroom black! I used a high gloss black paint and I'm so in love with it! It's not too dark in there because with the white unlined curtains and wood blinds, the windows glow and the paint reflects the light from the lamps. Then we found this fabulous chandelier from an antique store in clinton. It has five arms and all of its crystals are there too. We added the black shades after we had it installed.
I ordered black and white ticking fabric and made a duvet. I plan on making shams and pillow cases out of whatever fabric I decide on using for the cornice boards/ valances. Yeah, that's million dollar question right now. We can't agree on a fabric to use. I thought using a faux leather embossed with something like ostrich and maybe tufting it but Chris vetoed that idea. I've been all over the internet looking for fabric that's not something I've seen a thousand times like damask. I want to do a padded cornice that goes all the way up to the ceiling and possibly a scalloped bottom edge to mimic the mirror on the wall with maybe a 6 or 7 inch return. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
The white lamp with black shade was a thrift store find. It started out brass without a shade and Chris spray painted it white and I found the shade at Target. It looks so good, I love how it turned out. The other lamp is a Robert Abbey but I'm not too crazy about the shade.
The table that the white lamp sits on was another fabulous find courtesy of my husband. It's a Drexel Heritage nightstand that he found at Granny's Attic. In fact, they have the dresser that goes with it that we're debating whether or not to purchase. And if anyone buys that I will probably seek out to cut you!
The mirror to the right of the bed was found at the same antique store as the chandelier. It probably weighs 20 pounds.
I will be updating pictures since the bedroom is far from finished.

The kitchen

Since our house was built in the 40s, we didn't want to do much updating. We mainly just wanted to get a clean look with fresh paint, new cabinet hardware and new flooring. We are going to leave the stainless steel sink and the aluminum countertops. We painted the walls red quite a while ago and all the trim white.

So far, we've refinished the cabinets. We took off the doors and sanded them down and painted them gray. The cabinets themselves we just freshened up with white paint. I bought some vintage art deco cabinet pulls from ebay that looks awesome. We also took out the tacky faux marble contact paper from the shelves and drawers and relined them with black faux leather contact paper from home depot. I love the way it looks in the cabinet with our glassware.

We plan to do the floors hopefully soon. Chris wants to do black and white linolium.