November 18, 2010

A first look at the nursery

Posted in Home Improvement, pregnancy, Uncategorized at 9:12 am by bethmillett

So, the last two months have been a flurry of getting the rest of the house ready so that when Mom and Dad visited in November, I could use all of Mom’s great decorating powers to help me figure out what to do with the nursery. I had been thinking about royal blue, lime green and brown, but other than that, and the fact that I would need a crib, I didn’t know what the heck I would do.

So, Mom and Dad were here for an extended weekend last weekend, and we got right down to business. The biggest part of their visit was a trip to IKEA on Sunday, where we spent six and a half hours shopping for all kinds of things — new kitchen table and chairs; new office furniture, because I was moving my computer and books out of the nursery; dressers and a for the guest bedroom, to replace the removed closet (photos of that once the drywall is repaired and painted); and nursery furniture. It was a long day — my pedometer measured more than 3.5 miles by the time we got in the truck.

But we found adorable fabrics and a pillow to build the nursery around. It’s the Barnslig pattern, and Mom will make a wall hanging out of the fabric with the white background and curtains out of the one with the stripes.

We also bought the Mammut crib, a cute, kind of cartoony crib with big feet and rounded edges. They don’t show it on their website, so I can’t link to it, and I haven’t assembled it, so photos will come later. It converts to a toddler bed when the time is right, so I hope it will last a while. Here’s a link to other Mammut products, so you can get a feel for the style.

I happened to be in Lowe’s the other day and saw some great fabric baskets, covered in lime green and royal blue! Perfect for diapers, changing supplies, burp cloths, etc.

Now that I’ve picked fabric, I won’t be using brown as an accent color; I’m going to paint the walls a light gray and the built-in bookcases will be returned to their original white. (Painting over the brown should be loads of fun. Not.)

And, while at IKEA, I picked out this chair. It’s not really a rocker, but it does have a little bounce to it, so it will be good for midnight feedings and, later, bedtime stories.

Most of the home repairs are almost done, so I hope to focus on the nursery in December and be all set by the time I get too big to want to do any manual labor. Then I have to figure out what I need to put on my registry! I hope my sister and I will be able to work on that a little bit over Thanksgiving. My nieces are three and one, so she knows what moms can’t live without! If you have any ideas, or want to share the tools/furniture/etc. that you couldn’t live without, let me know!

November 8, 2010

We don’t need no stinkin’ closet

Posted in Home Improvement, Uncategorized at 8:33 am by bethmillett

So, in talking with Mom about a month ago, she revealed her secret plan for the guest bedroom where she and Dad stay when they are in town. Since I hope they’ll be spending more time here with me and Buster, I certainly want them to be comfortable. Her thought was to rip out the closet, which would give them much more floor space, which would allow for small dressers/nightstands on either side of the bed. Then, we’d also add an armoire on the wall opposite the bed for some hanging space. That seemed perfectly practical and do-able — nevermind that it had to be done before the new carpet installation (scheduled for November 10), or that I was four months pregnant.

I am surrounded by wonderful friends and Andrew was quick to offer his assistance. After hearing about the week he had had, I think I was doing him a service to give him the chance for some demolition therapy.

The closet is basically a box attached to the corner of the room, so it was relatively easy to rip out the corner bead, drywall and 2 by 4s. (I say relatively easy, since Andrew and his tools of destruction did most of the work and I just picked up pieces and put them in garbage bags.) It took us about two and a half hours, including a break for dinner. I’d say that the self-satisfied smirk on his face is from a job well done, but he pretty much smirks like that all the time. (Love ya, Andrew!)

Because I loathe drywall repair, I’m hiring my handyman to do the patching and repair where the walls and ceilings are exposed. And then with a little bit of paint and some new baseboard, we’ll be all set for a shopping trip to IKEA for furniture. Mom and Dad will be here for Thanksgiving, and we’re planning a trip for nursery and guest bedroom furniture.

November 5, 2010

Feathering my nest

Posted in Home Improvement, pregnancy at 8:16 am by bethmillett

There’s been a flurry of activity at my house lately. Some would say it’s nesting, but it’s actually a long chain reaction of events. It all began with Tazzy, the cat who peed all over the living room. Once she moved on to greener pastures in July, I needed to replace the carpet in the living room/dining room.

And if I was going to do that, I should replace the carpet on the stairs.

And if I did that, based on the width of the carpet stock, I was buying enough carpet to do the upstairs hallway (which is sporting a nice iron-shaped blemish from where I dropped, well, and iron.)

And if I’m going to do the hallway, I might as well do the four bedrooms upstairs so I don’t have a seam where the two different types of carpeting meet up.

I also had to treat and seal the concrete slab under the living room carpet so that any residual cat pee smells would not permeate the new carpet. So, for the last couple of weeks, I’ve had a very industrial-style living room, with exposed concrete floors.

Then, there was a list of things that should be done before the new carpeting goes in. For the last six years, I have been meaning to paint the stair balusters and handrails to match the paint color I’ve used on the rest of the trim in the house, but painting around the carpeting posed a bit of a problem.

Then Mom suggested that I replace the colonial balusters and newel posts with something more sleek and modern. Okay, so I’ll tear that out and have the handyman rebuild it (doing repairs and painting myself).

Then, she also suggested that we (and by “we,” she meant me) tear out the closet in the guest bedroom, patch the drywall and instead use small dressers as nightstands and an armoire for hanging clothes. Great idea! But that had to be done before the carpet, so the new carpet could fill in holes where the closet was removed. That means new baseboards in the guest bedroom.

My mother is my enabler. And don’t worry, I have plenty of great friends who have helped me with the heavy work.

I printed out two months’ worth of weekly calendars and filled in all my social and work obligations, and then started planning the cascade effect of what needed to be done. It’s been going pretty much on schedule, except that Home Depot is now five days late on their promise to have the new balusters and newel posts. I’m now under the gun to get them painted since the handyman arrives at 7 a.m. on Monday to start the staircase project. And today and tomorrow are tied up with the Indianapolis Monumental Marathon — so I think I have to squeeze in a late night or early morning to get the first coat on.

So, watch for some posts with photos and details soon! I’ve been meaning to write for a while now, but I’ve (understandably) been a little wiped out lately! I’m tired just reading the list!

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