Thursday, September 14, 2017

Utah Real Estate

I have recently been hearing a lot about Disney's device, "Circle." My sister was raving about it the other day and then I just read an article, that my friend wrote, talking about how much he loves it among some other Smart Devices.

Here's what Brett posted on his site about Circle:
This is something that has become more important to me now that I have kids. With all the nasty stuff that is out there on the web it’s nice to have a little bit of control of what your kids can and can’t access. Circle allows your family to manage all of your home’s connected items with one simple smart home device. With Circle, parents can now filter content and limit screen time as well as set a bedtime for every device in the home. Circle can even pause the Internet and share what kids are up to online.

  • Set Time Limits: Create daily time limits on apps and popular sites like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube.
  • Discover Insights: See where your kids are spending most of their time online by app and category.
  • Filter Content: You can set filter levels by age (Pre-K, Kid, Teen, and Adult) for each person in your home.
Technology has changed so much even in the last few years. The ability to monitor and control the internet usage of our children will become more and more important as access to content gets easier and easier.  

I feel the same way. It's so frustrating that we have to worry about the internet so much with kids, but not doing anything isn't an option so we'll be getting "Circle". You can read the rest of his article by clicking on the link.

Top 10 smart home devices you need to try!

Brett also has an awesome site he just set up and I am thrilled because I love love love looking at houses for sale!  

He's broken up the homes into cities. Super user friendly. There are many gorgeous homes right now since the market in Utah is crazy!   Have a look. Maybe you will find your next home and start your own DIY projects, like me. Or maybe you are smarter than me, and you will just purchase something that someone else already did the work on. 

Happy Hunting.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Bathroom remodel


The original builders of this house, decided to make the downstairs their home for their master bedroom. We are in the process of turning that area into a family room. This was their master bathroom. The other part of their master bathroom was outside of the door pictured below. There is an adjoining room that housed a very long vanity (about 8 feet) and then another wall. Behind that wall, was their master closet.

 Because we didn't need a 8 foot vanity nor want the master or master bath downstairs, we decided to turn the vanity area and adjacent master closet into a small bedroom for our oldest. We are in the process of doing that now. The bathroom we refinished and put a smaller vanity in as well.


Yep. That is carpet. Yep. That carpet is dark pink. Yep. I bet that carpet is full of poop, pee and throw up.  Needless to say, we did not use that bathroom until we had removed the carpet. That was a happy day for me.

Although I am a huge fan of bathtubs, we did not need a huge circular whirlpool tub in yellow. It had to go.

Below were a couple of towel racks and a space perfect to put a new vanity since we were getting rid of the monstrosity of a vanity just outside the bathroom door.

Yes, the walls are also pink. It's fine, everyone was doing it back then so it made it OK.

After we got the tub out, we set to work, taking out the step, which gave us an extra 1.5 feet for a vanity.
Much to my displeasure, Travis decided to do the plumbing. Much to my delight, it did not flood.
Thanks to Youtube, he is now a plumber.  We found this Kohler tub at NPS in Salt Lake for $200.00 originally $1400.00 Great find. Thank you NPS.

Travis spent quite a bit of time doing the plumbing and putting up backer board. So grateful I didn't have to do that part. We decided to tile behind the toilet because there are 4 boys in my family plus one girl that doesn't aim any better. . . so yah.

The floors went in first. Trav did an awesome job on those. My job was mostly clean up.

They turned out great and way better than pink carpet.  Come on, 1986 admit it, you love it.

Next went the tile on the walls. I got to choose and went with Carrerra marble that we found for a decent price.

On the top of the marble, we decided to do sheets of herringbone pattern.

Travis also carried the pattern around the tub, which I loved. 

Tiling stinks. That's all.

My fingers were cut to shreds by the time we were done. My advice? Go with cheaper tile and hire it out!

This project took us about 2 months to tile. Not fun, but I am thrilled with how it turned out. It is a little excessive for a basement bathroom and by a little, I mean a lot, but we love it.

 We got the vanity top from the DownEast scratch and dent for $60.00 and the vanity is Home Depot.
 One bathroom done, three to go, or maybe we just live in this one and never do the others, that's fine too.

I know what you are thinking: "See, we can do that!"

Here is my response: Yes, yes, you can and it will probably look better than ours does, close up. Also, you could probably climb Everest. . . but you'll probably freeze to death on the side of the mountain just before falling into a crevasse. So there's that.

Hire it out and also, stay home and just watch the movie Everest.

Happy Decorating,

Sunday, June 11, 2017


It's taking me a bit to post about our entryway. I've been waiting until we finished this fun old dresser that was given to us.  My husband, just finished the top of the table which he made from scratch so we're done!  Yay!


   My husband isn't a huge fan of shiplap or people that don't drive well. Anyway, he kindly let me do the shiplap in the entryway. He doesn't let me drive with him in the car.
Don't be fooled, I drive just fine.

Home Depot, tongue and groove shiplap. Great to work with, until you have to do over door frames, that is a bit tricky. 

Making sure it's level. I usually just do this when Travis is in the room and then say a few words like, "OK looks flush, centered, level" etc. etc. Then when he leaves, I hurry and toss up another piece and pretend like it was the old one. I am the speed, he is the perfection. . .where projects are concerned. He's pretty close in other ways too.

See the white socks with the white loafers? Told you he is perfection. Cutting wood in the winter though? He's awesome.

Other wall.

My ADHD usually kicks in and I start painting mid project and then just wait to help on other walls when needed. Since Trav's a perfectionist and I am not, I am rarely needed. Works out nicely.

Hammering in the top board. 

Not bad. The wall looks OK too.  Now, we needed to paint the doors inside because the white walls needed a contrast. Side bonus, that baby LOVES his dad way more than his mom. I am not complaining. :) 

We chose Benjamin Moore "Graphite."  I always want to type BM and then the paint color we used, on my blog posts to save time, but I am not sure if you guys are high brow enough to understand what BM stands for. From here on out, I will give you the benefit of the doubt. 

                                                                      Both doors done.

The 70s called and they want their tile back. I will happily re-gift it. The problem is, tile is pricey and it's not in the budget. The wood on the walls was roughly $200.
I saw on Pinterest that a girl had painted her tile with chalk paint. (The girl who painted her tile.) Her's looks amazing!  I decided I had nothing to lose. I bough $14 worth of chalk paint in Graphite. Then I painted the grout lines first, like she did.

Then I painted it all in and put 3 or 4 coats of Polyurethane over it. 

It was a hair dark for me and looked fake, so I needed to spruce it up. I bought a stencil online from Royal Design. It was a sheet of "Bees". I didn't want to use the whole sheet, so I picked about 12 tiles and stenciled a single bee on those, in Ralph Lauren Metallic Gold.

LOVE ! each of my kids got to paint one bee. They love finding their bee.

                                 It was just the pop the floor needed and a heck of a lot cheaper than tile.

The entryway needed some form of a table. My brother-in-laws grandma had given him an awesome bright orange dresser that he couldn't find a place for. My sister suggested I go bright green on it. I was skeptical, but Travis liked the idea, so I thought I would try it.

Let's be honest, this dresser would have fit right in with my 70s tile. . . no offenses Grandma. R.I.P.

I bought Emerald, I believe Behr makes it. (There are a lot of great Emeralds out there) and I let my 5-year-old paint it with me. If you don't let your kids paint with you, don't sweat it. You aren't a bad parent, you are a clean parent. . .something I know nothing about.

I was very skeptical at this point and did not love it, but Travis wisely told me to just give it time while he made a top for it.

He got a long board, cut it and glued it together and sanded it. Then we stained (Jacobean) and added the polyurethane. 

The top turned out amazing!
So glad I didn't repaint!!!! I love it! I love the pop of color too!


 Project entry way. . . DONE!  Well, except for the banisters. Next time.

Coming soon -Downstairs bathroom. (we're super close).

For anyone that thinks we get these projects done really quick, notice the season changes in the above pics.  This took a good 6 months. That's OK, it was worth it. Please don't look at our projects and do the whole "social media I am the worst woman in the whole world thing. Why can't I redo my house in 7 days!! I hate me!!"

No you're not. You probably feed, bathe and keep your kids alive. Or, work all day or anything else. If so, you're amazing.

The reality is, while one of our projects is getting done, some place else in our house is getting torn apart, laundry is not getting done, dishes are piling up and pizza is being served, yet again.  My pictures, only tell one part of the story, don't let your imagination fill in the rest with fiction. Each of us is unique. Each of us has talents. Your talents, that I don't have, don't define me, anymore than mine define you.

That's also not to say that I am amazing at DIYing. I am not. We look online, steal someone else's awesome talent that we admire and are grateful for their creativity that has inspired us! So grateful we each came with different talents and so grateful for what I have learned from you!

Happy Decorating-

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Green with Envy

Pantone color of the year: Greenery

Green is the color of Spring. It's also the color of a seasick shipmate. So, how do we know which green to use when decorating and picking color?

Pantone has just made that decision a whole lot easier with their color of the year.

I've been inspired by Douglas Elliman Florida to share my thoughts on the best ways to utilize this color shade in any home. 

Pair Greenery with a beautiful off white or use it to accent a rich colored wall. I love how the boxwood wreath makes our DIY fireplace pop. It's the perfect color against the Peppercorn background. 

There's something about the color green that makes one feel alive. Just like Spring, it brings with it a feeling of renewal. Used correctly, green can feel like a breath of fresh air. It's just the color to make us feel a bit more grounded-a feeling, I'm guessing, we could each use a lot more of. 

Add a little Green

Monday, April 10, 2017

Master Bedroom

When we bought this house, it had no bedrooms on the main floor. Instead, it was two large living rooms, with a kitchen in the middle that separates the two. Since we didn't need two living rooms and I didn't want to sleep in the basement, I wanted to add a master bedroom upstairs. 


This is a picture from the kitchen, of the living room that we transformed into our master bedroom, with a soon to be walk-in-closet and master bath. 

Another picture from the kitchen looking into the living room.

In order to make our master, we needed to add a couple of walls. We needed to add a long "bedroom" wall which would go from the edge of the wall next to the microwave to the edge of the fireplace. 

And yes, we did sleep next to the kitchen in the living room for months. It made it really convenient when we wanted a midnight snack. Once, while I was watching a show on the laptop, my husband slid a root beer float to me across the counter top. It was awesome. Not as awesome as having a finished bedroom, but when he also made nachos and slid them to me, it definitely made it a close second.

Looking from the soon to be bedroom out toward the kitchen. 

This is a view from inside what would become our bedroom. On the left side of the above picture is the edge of the fireplace. The rest of that mustard wall will become the master bath eventually. Next to it, will be the walk in closet on the right side. It will start where there is no wall. On the below picture, everything that has no wall and is open, will become the master closet. In order to create, this we will need to tear out the kitchen. So, we are waiting until we redo the kitchen to do the closet. It's the whole, "If you give a mouse a cookie thing". 

Here is a better view from the kitchen of where the bathroom will be. This is also a great "before" view of the fireplace.

First we added the 2 x 4's. We put one on the floor, nailed it down and then one on the ceiling. Then we spaced the vertical 2 x4's every 16 inches. This is super easy and a pretty quick job, not to mention really cheap. If your husband does it while you sit and watch, then it's super easy. 
It was under $50.00. This soon to be wall would be the side of the bathroom and walk in closet.

 Here is the view from inside the bedroom looking into the kitchen. You can see on the left side of the picture, that we also started to demo the soon to be bathroom. Sorry for the picture quality. After putting up all the studs, my husband added the doors and drywall. This wall, met up with the other wall that faced the kitchen.

My job was to mud and tape. I am not a perfectionist, but it wasn't too bad. I had to let it dry, sand then add a few more coats before sanding a final time. If you are a perfectionist, you will not love this job. I had to be OK with a little bit of uneven coverage on a few small spots. Which I was. Now that it is all done, you would never notice. 

Next I painted the room with a good primer. The door on the left leads to the master bath The one on the right, to the master closet. Notice how you can't tell that there are some uneven spots. Consider that that cost me about $15.00 and it would have been at least $500.00 to have a pro do it. 

A view of the great windows in our soon to be bedroom. The room needed not only paint, but some simple board and batten to make it pop. So we decided to try it. First we decided to paint. Because I knew the board and batten would be white, and 3/4's of the room would be white, I knew we could go bold on the rest of the room. We decided to do a great Benjamin Moore color "Peppercorn" for the rest of the wall. The result was amazing!!! I love the color and it works so well with the white. In the picture below, I am painting it on the top of the wall.
Yes, I paint while standing on my bed without it covered. I told you I am not a perfectionist. That get's me in trouble a lot. Yes, I dripped on the head board. Yes, it came out. Breath deeply all you type A's. It's OK. 😨

Remember this before of the fireplace, cause I am about to blow your mind.

Here's that great color, with the white on the bottom before we added the wood to the walls and the crown molding.
Hello light in my dark room. Did we add light? No, no we did not. Just brightened up the paint.

It's nice when you don't have to worry about painting perfect lines, because you know the wood will cover your lines. Makes for an easy paint job. As you can see, we haven't added the walk in closet yet.

This is my handsome husband hanging the crown molding that he figured out himself. He also added the trim around the two doors as well as new baseboards. He's awesome. He's also a perfectionist. My mom jokes that I get the job done super quick and then he comes behind me and cleans it all up. We're a good team.

Here he is attaching furring strips to the fireplace in order to hang drywall later to cover it. If you can't tell, he is also putting out the vibe. Sometimes he is funny. Not like me, but close.  

Furring strips done.
Now to attach the dry wall to the strips. 
Make sure your drywall can handle the heat of your fireplace.

We jumped between hanging the wood on the walls and doing the fireplace. On the right of the below picture, we have begun to hang the board and batten. This is a pretty easy task Considering most of your cuts are the same height.

Below we have the fireplace pre-paint. This is after we have the drywall up and some wood accent pieces. I am very proud of this because I did it myself while the husband was at work and while baby napped. I am terrible at math, so I was extra proud that my measurements were correct. For the bottom, I used our old baseboards. My design centered on me not wanting to caulk or mud and tape the fireplace. Super technical, I know. You just toss the wood up where ever there are cracks in your drywall. 

More Board and Batten pictures

I love love love how this window turned out-you can tell by my reflection in it. Either that or I am channeling my 7th grade dance picture.

Caulking and painting always falls to me, but that's OK. It takes awhile, but so worth the end result.

Below: The baby had just woken up, which meant my work time was done. My husband, Travis finished up the crown molding while baby and I measured for him. It's Summer time and super hot in the picture. For all you wondering if my baby is freezing, look at his legs, of course he's not freezing.  


WHAT??? Wait, I thought this was your living room!! Oh, it was, but now it's a master bedroom. Boom!

Love love love this color!  Love the fireplace. We need to make a mantel, but for now, the brick is just fine. 

 I love adding the pop of green with a live boxwood wreath. A variety of brightly bound books from the thrift store at $1 a piece adds more great color to the backdrop. Add some family pictures, a gold initial for your last name and some fun cheap decor items to prop up your books and you're set.

Hold on, who did the woodwork on the fireplace again??? Oh, yah, I forgot, that was me, mother of four, rejected writer, wearer of jammies, eater of chocolate. Yes, yes I did. OK Travis helped with the squares on the top half and he did the crown molding on the top, but we aren't talking about him right now. Focus on the bottom people. That was all me.

I know you weren't expecting this goodness. I have to mention that the light and the skylight will be changed some day. 
The dresser was given to us. It wasn't my favorite originally, but I love the gold handles with the paint color.

The rug I already had (Home Decorators). The small couch was from the Overstock outlet store and was $175. The pillows are target. The small table by the couch was TJ Maxx for $30.00. Bedspread was Downeast for $50.00.  I made the pillows on the bed and the headboard. Curtains were Kohls at about $10 a piece. Curtain rods are Home Depot, under $40 for all of them. 

Doors leading to bathroom and closet. . .eventually. 

The fireplace was really cheap. It cost around $60.00

 I am so thrilled with how this bedroom turned out. It seems like a ton of work, but it was actually a pretty quick project, one that you could do in a few days. It wasn't bad at all and really pretty inexpensive for all we got. For paint, walls, drywall, wood work, fireplace, doors, knobs, curtains, curtain rods, TV mount, a few inexpensive decorations, and baseboards, we were around $550. Not to bad, considering we just added another bedroom to the house. Next time you are picking a color, pair a white with an awesome dark, rich blue like "Peppercorn". You won't be disappointed.

Happy decorating-