Friday, April 30, 2010

Inspired Movies

So I'm over the couch dilemma. The consensus seems to be that my $12 garage sale chair has no business in my den anyway. I still have faith that I will give it a new life someday with some fabulous new upholstery but it will have to live somewhere else in the house. Maybe the guest room.

In the meantime we have been breaking in the new couch by watching some movies, three of which are worth noting:

First is No Impact Man. Colin Beavan and his family decide to try and live an entire year with as little impact on the environment as possible. I had heard of Colin's blog when he first started it back in 2006 and I had assumed that he and his wife were already crunchy eco-loving folks who just decided to do better for the earth. But I was wrong. What makes this film/story really interesting is Colin's wife Michelle. Michelle was addicted to reality tv, retail shopping and coffee. She was a consumer in every sense of the word. Michelle is what makes this story more REAL. She started the no-impact journey from the point where most people would start it....not knowing anything about what it means to have no impact on the environment and not being all to excited to go there. The happy ending though is that Michelle does go there and finds that she is happier for it. She was a consumer transformed and to me that says a lot. Give the movie a try. It is entertaining regardless of what you learn or don't learn at the end but I bet you will come away from it thinking about how you live your life.

Second on the list is Food Inc. I had heard a lot about this movie but I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it. I use the word "enjoyed" loosely because most of the information you learn in this film is extremely disturbing. I like to consider myself fairly educated on the topic of where my food comes from and fairly proactive about making good choices when it comes to what I eat. However, this film reminded me how quickly I fall back into old, BAD habits and gives me a renewed commitment to changing them. Our country's relationship with food is beyond distorted. If there was one thing that you could do to improve the life of yourself, your friends, your family and the environment, it would be to understand what you are eating. I challenge you to watch this movie and make the commitment to change one thing about the way you eat.

Thirdly is DIRT! The Movie. This little gem we stumbled on by accident browsing the channels one evening. It was a really interesting look at the importance of dirt which includes food, shelter, water, and climate. I can't really remember the last time I sat down and THOUGHT about dirt (probably college geology class) but this movie made me THINK. Dirt is part of the foundation of our environment. Take the time to learn about your relationship with dirt.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

It's Here...

The New Couch.

Ok...who can tell me the first problem with this couch?

Scale. Do you see it?

Do you see how the chair looks like it belongs in a dollhouse!?

What was I thinking!!??

In my effort to get as much length as possible and to make sure my husband was comfortable...I think I may have under estimated what the "LARGE" version of this couch would look like. This could be a serious issue. When it first arrived I thought I was going to throw up I was so upset with myself.

Secondly...they put the wrong fabric on the pillows. Actually, the right fabric in the wrong colorway. But this one isn't so bad. Instead of just yellow and gray it has blue, green and orange. I tend to lean to green and blue anyway but part of me was looking for a change. We are also one pillow short. Let's see what they offer me as a solution when I call.

Lastly, and this is no surprise, but I hate it with the carpet. The carpet is a cool gray and the sofa is a warm taupe. It is tolerable but definitely not my ideal. My ideal is to put in hardwood and an area rug but the timeline for that is probably way off.

Can't wait for someone to come over and give me a second opinion.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


The day we "officially" moved into the new house we also got our first visitor. Grannie Apple arrived the same day we moved the very last of our belongings. While I knew she was here to help, obviously her first priority was to see her only grandson. Really that was most of the help I needed. Someone to keep Reis occupied and safe while I ran around with my head cut off. Grannie Apple did an excellent job at spending time with Reis but also managed to give me a hand. Somehow she managed to organize our kitchen without using the kitchen! Brilliant! She also helped me prime the cabinets...and had a good laugh when I couldn't find my underwear on day 4.

Our next visitors were Grandma Bea, Grandpa Mark and Aunt Ruthie. With three extra set of hands available we got the chance to tackle a fair amount of projects: deep cleaned master bath, kitchen stuff actually put away into my kitchen, sanding, priming and painting cabinets, hanging old windows, getting on the roof, visiting the attic and working on some more of Reis's room. Best of all, Bea, Ruthie and Reis shared lots of belly laughs.

On a lower note....our "little black cat" Della is not adjusting to the move so well..... She has barely eaten since we moved in (two and a half weeks ago) and she is very thin and weak. She was very sick in Feb/March so I was afraid that this was going to happen. She is off to the doctor this afternoon but I'm prepared for the worst. I just don't want to see her feeling terrible anymore. She isn't the cat I knew back in December at our old house. I have to say that this makes the move bitter sweet. I was really hoping Della would enjoy being here but I guess it just wasn't meant to be. We love you little black cat.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Kitchen Revealed

KITCHEN BEFORE: Behold the beauty that is 80s woodgrain with tarnished, brassy, tacky hardware.

IN PROCESS: Removing the cabinet doors, drawer fronts, nasty contact paper and hardware.

Sanding, priming and painting production line in the garage.

KITCHEN AFTER: Color is Sherwin Williams Prairie Grass. Satin nickel hardware from Home Depot.

I'm pretty happy with the results. I have to admit that I am curious what a little darker color would look like. Depending on the light in the kitchen sometimes it just doesn't seem like there is enough contrast between the cabinets and the awful backsplash and the cheap laminate countertop.

I'm also disappointed that I didn't get to take down the cabinets on each side of the sink and replace them with open shelving. Unfortunately the way that the backsplash tile is installed would make it difficult to get the look I want and right now it just doesn't seem worth it.

Overall, I achieved the result I wanted. I can definitely live with this kitchen for a few years, hopefully until I can afford new cabinets. Big thanks to Grannie Apple, Grandma Bea and Aunt Ruthie for all their help!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Day 4 looked like this...

We officially moved in last Saturday. This is what the house looked like Tuesday. Scary right? This was also the day that I almost sat on the floor and cried because I couldn't find my underwear. I thought I had done a good job of labeling all of our boxes...but apparently not!

It's been one full week in the house. Here are some discoveries...
  • A broken flower pot, salad spinner, cuisinart coffee maker and ironing board.
  • Our washing machine is flooding its soap dispenser.
  • A male carpenter bee is hovering over the middle of our deck looking for love.
  • It takes three trips to Home Depot to install one baby gate.
  • Nine month old babies can crawl very fast.
  • It's good to have a petite cat who can squeeze around baby gates.
  • I might be terrible at selecting paint colors.
  • I never would have survived this week without Grannie Apple.
Things are slowly...SLOWLY coming together. The priority at the moment is finishing up the kitchen cabinets. They need one more coat of paint before we can actually unpack all of our kitchen stuff. Andrew will be SO relieved.