Tuesday, November 20, 2012

#231 - Buh Bye Black Door

I'm trying to catch up on blogs - this entry is from the week before Thanksgiving, but I hadn't edited the photos. 

I've finished my first project from the Young House Love book!  #231 - Paint your front door.  Truth be told, I've wanted to paint our front door for some time, but needed to convince Pete that it could be done.  Showing it to him in the book was all it took!

I picked the color several weeks ago - the day we were featured on YHL - but then we had a little cold snap and I couldn't start my project.

There are actually two colors pictured above.  I chose the one in back - Lotus Leaf by Behr, mostly because it was available in an exterior paint and primer combo.  The other one was a Martha Stewart color in a brand I can't remember.

I bought the special small foam rollers called for in the book, and some fine sandpaper for prepping the door.  I already had liquid deglosser and an angled brush on hand from some other painting projects I've done around the house.  Here's what our front door looked like before the first coat.  I had already removed the door knocker and mail slot and wasted about 45 minutes trying to get the doorknob off - if you have any suggestions, please let me know.  There were a couple of spots of caulk that hadn't been properly sanded before the previous owners painted the door black, so I sanded those down along with the area around the hardware before applying the deglosser.

Then it was time for thin and even coat number one:

Then, after the second and third coats dried, I put the hardware back on:

It was, of course, after 11pm by then.  I need to take a picture of the whole house in daylight hours so you can see the whole effect, I'll try to update tomorrow with one.  The whole facade of the house looks better.  It's much friendlier-looking, not so dark and dreary.  I also ORBed the heck out of the door knocker and mail slot, so that's another YHL project in the bag.

My only regret:  listening to the employee at Home Depot who suggested the satin finish over semigloss - I didn't have the book with me so I took her word for it.  I do wish it were a bit glossier.  But even in it's satin-ness, it's 200% better than the black!

I'm thinking I'll do #234 next - I've got an old birdbath that's practically begging to become aqua before winter.

UPDATE: Here are some before and after pics of the door. 

Before (old pics I found in iphoto) - note the brass door knocker and mail slot.   (and cutie baby girl on her first day of 'school')

and after:

We hope to have the trim of the house lightened up to match the new windows- a bone color  -and I'm hoping that we can make the storm door bone at that time.  Also, note Fiona photo bombing my shot.  And yes, we do still have our fall pumpkins on the stoop.  Hoping to make it more wintery this weekend.

Bonus pics:  photo of my first-ever fall mantle.  I think it turned out pretty well.  Ellie at dinner.

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Pinterest for the Win!

This pin has been all over Pinterest lately -  from the blog, Living with Punks (link below)
So I finally bought the yard of fabric and trim required and made one for Ellie!

It's really hard to get a still photo of her these days.


Ellie really seems to like it - she stars saying 'ashes, ashes' every time she sees it.  (Little Girl is ALL ABOUT Ring Around the Rosie)

The tutorial was very easy to follow with many pictures - I plan on making a second one very soon in leftover fabric that matches Ellie's nursery!!

Sunday, November 04, 2012

Halloween 2012

Ellie is too young for trick-or-treating, but we take her on a wagon ride every night after dinner, so we wanted to be able to do it on Halloween in costume.  Jen Wheeler sent me the link to an awesome costume that incorporated the wagon, and I was instantly sold!  Pete soon jumped on board, and our family costume for Halloween 2012 was in the planning stages.  We were really really happy with how it turned out.

For my part, Ellie's costume was pretty simple.  I bought a gray sweatsuit, seam-ripped off the existing applique, and sewed on a little pink tummy and some pink and gray ears.  I also added a tail I whipped up with some gray velvet and polyfil (with a little button over the shoulder so Ellie girl wouldn't have to drag it behind her.)  The tail was the most labor-intenstive part - that little sucker was a beast to fill with stuffing!

Fiona's cheese costume was a few blocks of floral foam glued together, carved out, and spray painted yellow.  I sewed a little black felt jacket for Fi and hot-glued the cheese to it.

Pete made our little mouse trap (though I made template for the logo!), and I think he did a fabulous job!  He built it the Sunday before Halloween in our basement, then was up Tuesday night until midnight spray-painting it in the garage.

Ellie was terrified of her mouse trap (shocking, I know), so she went down the street with her daddy like this.  I pulled the wagon and walked the cheese.

After we walked our wagon-route, we dropped Fi off at the house and walked another block over to our friend Audrey's house.  Her mom and dad were hosting all the girls Ellie's age (and their parents) for dinner.

Then we headed back to our house for dessert.  I had made pumpkin cheesecake and these really awesome black and orange whoopie pies of which I failed to take a picture.  They looked very festive.  Ellie REALLY enjoyed hers.

Once the sugar was flowing in the girls' bloodstreams, they all seemed to migrate toward the staircase.  Some of the girls are newer to stairs than others, and it quickly became the place to be.

Around eight o'clock all the girls were buzzing and up past their bedtimes on a weeknight, so everyone headed home.  Ellie had one last shenanigan up her sleeve, then we carted her off to bed as well.  

Best part of Halloween 2012?  As Ellie and I headed out the door Thursday morning for daycare and work, I had to remind Pete to fully remove his whiskers before walking into his account in Cincinnati :-)

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Catching Up

Weekends have been pretty busy - here's a recap: 

Three weeks ago, on our way home from church,  we saw horses show-jumping in Centre Point.  They were there to promote the Alltech National Horse Show that's going on right now at the Horsepark.  We met Junior, Beau, and Maverick.  Ellie couldn't have been more pleased to see her beloved 'Hee Haws!'

Later that evening, we went to Evans Orchard to visit their pumpkin patch.  We had no idea they also had TONS of activities for children: potato sack slides, a petting zoo, a giant hay bale fort, etc.  We enjoyed our last sunny, warm Sunday, and Ellie picked a pumpkin.

Last weekend, we finally decided to tackle the leaves in our front yard.  We even had a third rake for Ellie!  She was more enthusiastic about it than we could have hoped.

Then on Sunday we had our neighborhood Costume Parade.  Our friend Scarlett (the strawberry) won for the 'younger ones' age group.  It was super-cold and dreary out, though, so everyone came back to our house to hang out!  It was so fun to watch all the little girls running around together - Ellie was in heaven.  We all had such a good time that we pretty much re-created it last night for Halloween - more on that later!