Tuesday, May 24, 2011

5 funny things (mostly John) has said recently:

1) Last night John said the prayer and Peter reminded him beforehand to bless the people in Missouri. Instead he said, "Bless the people in misery." We were all struggling to get to the "amen" so we could laugh out loud!

2) Peter asked John if he wanted to have him or Nathaniel baptize him when he turned eight next year. John said dad because Nathaniel would just hold him under.

3) Rebecca saw an update on the Macaulay septuplets the other day and made an observation.
"Baby + baby + baby + baby + baby + baby + baby= Rebecca."
Isn't that the truth!

4) On Sunday John always complains that he doesn't want to go to church. A couple of weeks ago as he was launching into his fit he shouted, "All we do is sit there while people keep talking talking and talking!"

5) We were watching some birth story on TV where this woman was shouting something about now wanting to do this and John says, "Why don't they just put it back in?"

The boys

Silly husband.
Peter has been religiously working out with P90X for the last 8 months and is now size skinny.
It's a very sad story.

This little guy just learned to ride his bike he got for his birthday last April.

So now he rides it all day long.
He made me go outside today to watch him ride with one hand.

Our hairdresser has been gone on maternity leave and I didn't like the other one so I haven't had the motivation to make an appointment to get the boys' hair cut. Nathaniel's hair doesn't really get long, it curls at the ends and gets puffy on the top. So yesterday to be funny he combed it back and put on these sunglasses. Totally reminded me of the 80's!
Then he threatened me by saying that he wouldn't wash it until I got on the ball and made the appointments. Gross. They are going in today right after school.
Well played Nathaniel.

Positive thinking

In Relief Society on Sunday the teacher said, "Sisters, it is time to stop with the Pollyanna attitude. Summer is not coming. We need to face the fact that it is going to be a second winter."
The rain is getting old. It was so dark all day yesterday, which I think it is kind of making Peter and I depressed. But it does make everything very green. Nathaniel can hardly keep up with our ridiculously over-sized lawn.

The flowers are growing, so I guess they don't mind the weather.

Plus I get to put out my vases again.

At least it is always spring on the wall in my family room!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Kitchen demolition

Wednesday Peter & our counter top man, Marvin, tore out the old counter tops.
I knocked out backsplash.

Only the backspash tile didn't all come off nice and clean.
Some of it was so glued on it took the drywall with it, especially along one wall.
There is something about peering down into the skeletal remains of your cabinets and realizing just how much of construction is just a facade that really pushes your panic button. In other words, are we really going to be able to put this back together?

It was about this point I really began to wonder just why I was doing this at all. The meltdown started that night right after Peter left for a two day seminar in Park City. As I studied the gaping holes in my wall I couldn't help thinking, there had really been nothing wrong with the kitchen before! What the heck was I doing? But as the counter people left and I was able to stand back and really see it I knew it was going to look great when we were done.

So here they are. That big section there was in two pieces and it was brutal just watching the five guys strain to manhandle them in. They are absolutely gorgeous.

Here is the sink before:

with special attention on the stained caulking:

I had only seen the new sink as a small picture in a catalog and was shocked at how big it was when they brought it in. I absolutely love it. It almost makes me excited to do the dishes.
OK, who am I kidding. You know it does.

And here is the sink now. Isn't my faucet pretty?

Here is my old tile, complete with sixteen year old grout:

And here is the new counters.
I can't believe how much color is in the quartz!
I think it looks beautiful against the white cabinets.

I spent the entire day yesterday and most of today remounting the cabinets and drawers with new hinges, rollers, and knobs for the cabinets. My friend Shawn, who is an angel from above, came to help me for a couple of hours yesterday, but I still ended up spending hours and hours more of agonizing and redrilling and scrutinizing.
For the record, I'm never doing that again.

We still have the backspash, the bead board around the island and the bar, and the drawer pulls but I think it already looks amazing. So much brighter and cleaner!
Maybe I'm shallow, but I really do get a lot of enjoyment out of these home improvements and the kitchen is where I spend so much of my time. I couldn't be more pleased. I think all my backbreaking work has been well worth it!
For a budget renovation I think we've really added value too.
But who cares? I never want to move now anyway.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Charlie's tail

After I got home from picking Charlie up from the groomers last week I noticed his tail. Not quite sure of why exactly the groomer did this because it looks pretty silly. I don't know if you can tell from the picture but it is shaved close at the top and then just a big sausage thing at the end. Peter and the kids asked me to shave it all the same so it wouldn't look so ridiculous, but that would require me to do something else and so I declined.
Charlie doesn't seem to care.

Patience is a virtue. I'm working on it.

I want my skin back.

I want my cupboards back on.

I want my drawers back.

Not that this surprises anyone but the counters are still not here and no firm indication of when they will be. But more importantly still waiting on hinges for cabinets and sliders for drawers.
I know this is only a micro-fraction of what I'd be facing if I was doing a real renovation and so far I've been calmly taking it as it comes. Only now I'm starting to feel done.
Here is to hoping the cabinets and counters can be finished this week.

By the way, this is the color I picked for the counters:

Friday, May 13, 2011

Laundry room makeover

So here is the before. Not an actual "laundry room" per say,
but more of a laundry breezeway.
I wanted to photograph my very first cabinet take-down operation.

And after. Shiny olive green cabinets. Oh green! How I love thee!
My knobs have an "AM" and "PM" for April & Peter Mitchell:)

Something was bugging me about it and so today I switched the clock
and the sign and now all is right with the world.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

Sarah's Mother's Day Present

Last remaining tulips not yet eaten by the deer.

It was 85 degrees yesterday and is supposed to be a low of 30 degrees tomorrow.
So much for being able to plant right after Mother's Day.

Peter asked me a few days ago if the counter tops could count as my Mother's Day gift.
I told him I supposed that would be acceptable.
Just this once:)

Surprise kitchen renovation

Peter recently did 10 years of taxes for a man going through a divorce and low on cash. Turns out he does counter tops for a living. So I subtly suggested to Peter as he was drifting off to sleep one night (think hypnosis) that maybe we could do a trade. Long story short, I'm getting new counter tops. Beautiful, sand-colored, quartz. At cost. How much? I'd tell you but you'd want to kill me.

How I decided on that color is another story. A long, agonizing one. Decisions and I don't get along. I'm a fretter in the worst sense. I must have time to ponder, and badger people, and ask questions, and look online, and change my mind 50 times. Lily was witness to some of this and no longer questions whether I'm insane, she knows for sure now. I'm begging Peter to call the guy at 9:30 at night to tell him I've changed my mind.
"Please honey! Call him before it's too late! I promise I won't change my mind again! I'm 100% this time! I just know it!"
Peter is rolling his eyes and patiently resisting the urge to strangle me. He's been through this routine with me many times before.
As I was instructing Rebecca not to write with permanent marker on a piece of paper unless it was on a pad so it wouldn't bleed on the counter it struck me that in a few days it would be getting smashed out anyway. I painted Sarah's fingernails over newspaper today. Every time I give it a good wipe down I think, hmmm, this is silly. This is going to be in the garbage in a couple of days. But just in case . . . at least it will be pretty when they come to demolish it.

The back splash is going to be this slate with very occasional pieces of the blue glass below mixed in. I want blue, but I don't want to commit to too much. I'm going for a cottage/clean/beachy colors look. When you seal the slate it brings out the color even more, but doesn't make it shiny. We have a lot of back splash area and I think it is going to make everything really pop.

Along with these new beautiful counter tops we thought, since we were considering doing it anyway, we'd redo the cabinets in that white I've been wanting. So here is the before picture.

When I took off the first cupboard door I felt like I was doing something wrong. Lots of feelings of inadequacy and concern about the daunting task ahead of me! As in I don't want to screw it up and I've only heard horror stories about oil-based paint.

(My cupboards are showing! How embarrassing!)
That light on the ceiling so needs to go doesn't it?
I'll think about recessed lighting later . . .

first coat
(I'm painting the cupboard frames by hand)
I have to wait on the island because we first have to install the bead board.
The great thing is that everything is still usable and I didn't even have to empty out all the cupboards. I have a stove, microwave, fridge, gas, electricity, and running water during this small renovation. Plus, we've taken notice of how much easier it is to get to things when you don't keep having to open and shut the cupboards! Much respect for my friends who have done whole kitchen overhauls that can take weeks or even months, leaving them to wash dishes in their bathtub.

Using a paint sprayer--another 1st for me. The paint has to dry for at least 5 hours before you can flip the doors to paint the other side. Then the 2nd coat can't be applied until the next day.

I have paint all over my feet, hands, legs, arms, and in my hair. I went to church like that today because why go to the trouble of getting it off with paint thinner when I'm going to be getting it all over me again tomorrow?
My whole body hurts from sanding, painting, bending, squatting, reaching, kneeling on hard surfaces but on the whole I think things have gone very smoothly. It is a lot of work of course, but not so bad as I feared. I may be done with the painting tomorrow, but I'm doubtful with the paint taking so long to dry. Counter-tops are supposed to be coming in on Monday or Tuesday so I'm trying to work fast.
Oh and also, Peter leaves for California in the morning.
This is not good timing, but it never really is, is it?

Peter turns 40

The big 4-0 has come for Peter, which must mean that I am next
so I guess I better have good things to say about it!

This man is the best decision I've made and the person I want to be with the most
(until he makes me mad:)

He's my confidant and my friend.
A hard worker and family man (even when we drive him crazy.)
Ambitious, generous, goofy.
He isn't perfect, but neither am I, so he's perfect for me.

An accounting of our visit with the Holmes Family

Women's Conference 2011.
There is a picture of Amber and I that my friend TracCee took but we it isn't our best
and Amber would not appreciate me posting it:)
We love Women's Conference and look forward to it every year, and every year my favorite speaker is Julie Beck. I don't even know what to say about her except--Wow.
Amber and I had a week long shop-a-thon wherein we discovered the wonders of Hobby Lobby.
I'm thinking we may have opened Pandora's Box.

Good pictures of Connor are not easy to get so I'm proud of this one.

Their new dog Sparkle--she came with the name. We like to tease the Holmes about it and call her things like glitter, bling-bling, spark plug, etc.

Heidi always looks at you like this--over her glasses. It is very cute.

I just missed getting a picture of Charlie lying his head on this doll. It was really cute. Charlie and Sparkle got along after some initial terror on the part of Sparkle.
Lots of people are scared of our dog at first but he really is just a big 'ol teddy bear.

We spent Wednesday taking advantage of the Salt Lake Connect Pass. We visited Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake, got a lunch at Lion House Restaurant, caught a movie at the Planetarium, went to the Aquarium of the Pacific, and went to the dinosaur museum at Thanksgiving Point.

Holmes Family!

Flowers on Temple Square

3-D movie at the Planetarium

Lion House

Petting the sting rays at the aquarium.

Riding the train at the zoo.

We are sad to see them go! Sparkle favors Amber to an annoying degree
and so she rides the whole way home on her lap.

goodbye hugs!