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Archive for the ‘Home’ Category

Painting the Dining Room

In Home on March 9, 2014 at 4:26 pm

I have always heard that if you paint your dining room walls red, then guests will want to eat more and talk more.

I am not painting our dining room walls red. My cooking can stand on its own legs now and our family does not need any encouragement to talk longer.

No, I am painting the walls orange!

Well, everything above the chair rail is going orange and everything below the chair rail is yellow with orange stenciling.

Every time I stencil I fall in love with the process all over again. This stencil is from an Etsy store called Royal Design Stencils.

Now Dan was a little surprised by my choice in color. He even tried talking me into only painting one wall orange, but I couldn’t keep such a bright, fun color to just one wall. He’s lucky I am keeping it to the dining room. I could have painted our bedroom orange.
Oh, now there is an idea!

Back to the dining room.

This is the never ending paint project. According to my old blog posts, I started painting the walls below the chair rail in May 2012. Hopefully, I will finish painting above the chair rail by May 2014. I think it would say something bad about my character if I let the project drag on longer than 2 years.

Next Paint Project

In Home on August 5, 2013 at 6:00 am

Now that the living room is done, it is time to start painting something else. Two candidates came to mind.

First, the dining room needs to be finished. I have my heart set on orange walls above of the chair rail and orange stenciling over the yellow paint below the chair rail. Soon every room in our house will have bright colors – just you wait.

Second, the porch is in a sad state with peeling paint everywhere.

Since the dining room can be done at anytime of the year, the porch takes priority as I can only paint it during the summer. It could be painted in the Fall too, but then I am having to hope for a stretch of no rain. Rain is less plentiful in the summer though I imagine the humidity will not be helpful, but you can’t have everything.

Saturday morning was spent scraping the old, flaking paint off. Elly helped for a total of 2 minutes before she hopped on her rocking horse.

After I finish painting the porch, Elly has asked that we paint her rocking horse.

She would like it orange.

Great minds think alike!

The Green Carpet is Dead

In Home on July 22, 2013 at 11:12 pm

The green carpet is dead!

Perhaps not as momentous an occasion as the Wicked Witch is dead, but really, really close.

For 8 years, I lived with a room covered in green carpet. Sometimes it was several rooms. First, we ripped it out of the guest bedroom. Then, we ripped it out of Elly’s room. Then, Elly and I single-handedly ripped it out of the dining room. On Sunday, we ripped it out of the living room. It was a joyous event!

My finger has a huge blister on it from pulling out all the staples. Dan hurt his knee from kneeling on the hard floor so much. Jake’s heart was broken as he watched his comfy rug being thrown out. Elly is the only one who came out of the project unscathed despite insisting on helping in every aspect from staple pulling to carpet ripping to sweeping.

Poor Jake. He kept moving around the room and laying on the ever decreasing amount of carpet left in the room.

The hardwood floor underneath is in amazing condition. Not a mark is on it.

It truly looks like nobody ever walked upon it. The original owners must have moved into the house and immediately laid ugly green carpet down. Goodness knows what they were thinking, but they gave us a wonderful gift.

Walls of the Same Color

In Home on July 15, 2013 at 10:52 pm

The living room walls have all been painted a bright, sunny yellow from their dingy pale yellow.

Started this painting project on June 17th 

Finished today, July 15th. It took me a full month to paint 4 walls.

Now the fun can begin.

Guess what Dan is doing this Saturday?

When I asked Dan what he was doing this weekend, he told me that he had plans to go to a board game group and then nothing else. If he doesn’t tackle the carpet by ripping it all out, Elly and I will whip out some girl power and do it ourselves. We’ve done it before. 

I can’t wait to get rid of the last of the green rug. It’s going to feel like a hot shower does after rolling around in mud.

Poor Jake will miss the cushion beneath his aging bones, but the rest of us will love it.

Cutting the Grass

In Home on July 9, 2013 at 8:11 am

Our lawn mower broke. Hurray!

For years, I have encouraged Dan to replace his push mower. The untimely death of it was just the push Dan needed. Finally, he is going to research riding mowers and hopefully purchase one at the end of the season when they all go on sale.

If the meantime, we will be using a lawn service. My next door neighbor is going to be thrilled. He gets twitchy and downright annoying when our grass gets too long.

I too am thrilled. The lawn will no longer interfere with our family time.

Yet, I am a little nervous about using a lawn service. I have seen how fast their fancy riding mowers move. My newly planted trees and plants won’t stand a chance.


dwarf pine tree


3 abelias


crape myrtle

Perhaps I should construct brick walls around all of them or buy more round tomato cages.


peach tree

A Painting Party

In Crafts, Home on July 3, 2013 at 8:15 am

A lot of painting has taken place in the past few days.

Elly made several masterpieces over the weekend.

Her process was terribly messy. I was instructed to put a large glob of paint in the middle of the construction paper. Then, Elly dipped her hands into the paint, letting the excess ooze through her fingers. She swirled the paint all over the paper.

While waiting for me to change papers, she rubbed the paint into her hands like it was some colorful lotion.

It is no wonder that I have to replenish our washable paint supply every other month. Elly loves her paint.

Truly loves.

On Monday, I painted the 3rd wall in the living room. This time I used a roller and oh, boy, was it much faster. Up close you can tell that one wall was brushed on and one wall was rolled on, but if you are that close to my walls, you are likely a kid in time out. Nobody else is going to be studying my walls.

Only 1 wall left to paint before we finally get to rip up this carpet. I can’t hardly wait!

Yesterday, Elly painted an American flag with the Pottstown Moms Club.

I used artist tape to block out the stripes and star section as seen in this blog.

Perhaps we will take a break from painting these next few days. Or not since it seems to be raining yet again.

Slowly Painting the Living Room

In Home on June 17, 2013 at 6:00 am

The old walls are not terrible , but the 50-year-old golf-green carpet has seen better days. For 8 years, I put off ripping this carpet out. Then, a hole formed and pushed up my timeframe.

Still the rug has not been ripped up. An ugly, tattered rug like this is the perfect drop cloth.

The walls were a light yellow. It was nice, but it was also a bit plain.

I kept with the yellow theme, but just punched it up a notch. Oh, how I love bright colors! They make me so happy.


(only 1 coat of the new yellow next to the old yellow)

Only 2 walls have been painted. Both were painted with only the use of a brush. Due to the windows, front door and fireplace mantle, so much had to be cut in that it was just faster to work with a brush. There are 2 walls left to paint. Little will have to be cut in on the two remaining walls, making a roller the more efficient tool. The only reason I would use a brush is to keep the look consistent. The brush strokes are visible to me.

So, should I paint the other walls with a brush or have I been staring at it too long? Will anybody notice? Will anybody care besides me?

Once the walls are painted, the last of the ugly green carpet can be thrown out. Hurray! I will likely bake a cake to celebrate.

Sunday Snapshots (of fair rides)

In Fun, Home on June 2, 2013 at 6:47 am

The last time I took Elly to the Boyertown playground, we noticed that they were setting up for a fair. From the swings, Elly could see the merry-go-round, the ferris wheel, and the dragon roller coaster. It was pure torture.

When Dan and I took her on Saturday if she would like to go to the fair, she jumped for joy.


She rode the merry-go-round.


She rode the caterpillar.


She rode the motorcycle.

Yet, her favorite ride by a long mile was the dragon roller coaster.

I lost count of how many times she rode the dragon. It was a good thing we had splurged and bought her the wrist band. She got her money’s worth.

Dave Painted Our Walls

In Family, Home on May 27, 2013 at 10:06 pm

To be precise, Dave painted our living room walls in 1996. If we purchased this house in 2005, how do I know?

That is how.

It was behind the big mirror that has been mounted over our fireplace since presumable 1996. The big mirror that reflected nothing but the ceiling. For many years, I have wanted to take that mirror down. Finally, I got my wish.

Dan and I got a good laugh out of Dave’s signature and the garish pink paint.

Mr. Elliott, the husband of the couple that built our house, must have been a loving and tolerant man. I don’t know too many men who will allow their wives to paint their living room pink.

Before the day was through though, I had painted over it with a primer. I can tolerate a lot of colors, but pink is not one of them. Sweet Elly will have to live her entire childhood without pink walls.

Hopefully, relocating the huge mirror that once hung over the mantle into her room will make up for the lack of pink paint.

Though I would love to claim that moving the mirror into Elly’s room was my idea, the brilliance came from her Grandpop. He saw how Elly lit up in front of the wall of mirrors in her aunt’s house and promptly informed me that she needed a huge mirror in her bedroom.

Now she has one.

I imagine a lot of time is going to be spent in front of this mirror.

Spring Shuffle of Clothes

In Home on April 15, 2013 at 6:00 am

Our house was built in the 1950s.

Like most homes built back then, there is only 1 closet per room and the closets are super small. No walk-in closets here.

Dan’s side of the closet in our bedroom.

My side of the closet in our bedroom.

It is a mystery to me as to why the closets were built so small back then. Did people not have as many clothes? Did they use armoires? Perhaps, they did what I do.

Every Spring and every Fall, I swap a season’s worth of clothes. Today I packed up all the winter clothes from wool sweaters to fleece jackets to scarves. Then, I unpacked all our summer wear from shorts to bathing suits. It made me so happy to see those clothes. I can’t wait to go swimming again and head down to the Jersey shore.

Since I have been doing this for as long as Dan and I have lived here (8 years), I am used to it and can accomplish it in about an hour. The plus side of doing the swap is that I have a chance to weed out the clothes that didn’t get worn all season. Clothes that don’t get worn for one reason or another get donated. The trash bags in the picture below hold all the donated clothing.

The bins are stored in our cedar closet in the basement. It is another clue that makes me think the original owners did the same clothes shuffle each season.

Since Elly does not have to share her closet with any siblings, I can keep her winter dresses tucked in the back. I still packed up her winter jacket and snowsuit, mainly because I am SO done with winter.

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