Little Free Library

11/21/2012

I recently paid my first visit to a Little Free Library in our neighborhood. Have you ever heard of this movement? I think they’re all around the country but I’m not sure if there is an extensive list anywhere. It’s an honor system book exchange with a simple policy: take a book, leave a book. Anyone can use it. Anyone can start one. I left 4 of Ali’s board books that we no longer use and picked up a new one, But Not the Hippopotamus by Sandra Boynton. Isn’t this precious? I love how the owners built the little free library to match their house. This one had one shelf of kids books and one of adult books.


Secret Projects and Randomness

11/20/2012

I probably won’t get around to doing a full New Home Update this week because of all that’s going on with Thanksgiving, family visiting and a boat load of graphic design work I need to do this week, but here are a couple of shots of our new wood floors in the great room.

There is still a lot of slippery sawdust on the floors. Ali looked like she was at a skating rink.

I moved/helped move a huge amount of furniture this weekend (no… we’re not moving into our new house for another couple weeks) including this sofa (with hide-a-bed), desk, wall cabinet and a large media cabinet  (not pictured because it’s for my parents) from an estate sale…

And also all this furniture for a secret project that has been in the works for many, many months… Here’s a sneak peek at our first home staging job. Much more about that coming soon… including the official launch of our new business, more photos and hopefully a video tour of this house:

This goober is 16 months old today! I’ve been looking forward to 16 months for a long time because that’s how old Ladybug was when we parented her. Oh, 16 months! I have experience with that age! Of course, the two girls are very different.


Cheekwood Autumn Beauty

11/19/2012

My parents and I took Ali to Cheekwood Botanical Garden on a lovely Sunday afternoon (while Jason was on his way home from an 11-day tour). It was absolutely gorgeous in the park. Combine that with my beautiful daughter and I couldn’t stop taking photos! Ali’s grandparents couldn’t stop breaking the rules and picking flowers for her. Here are a few of my favorites photos:


Phone Photo Friday

11/16/2012

Most of my Phone Photo Friday pictures are from my Instagram feed. Follow me @mahlbrandt if you’d like!


New Home Update

11/15/2012

Well things didn’t go quite as quickly as we had planned this week. The hold up has been getting the electric connected by the electric company, passing the city inspection and then getting the gas company to come out and set up the meter which involves a lot of people coming out and is completely out of our control. We didn’t have any problems, it just took longer than we were hoping and as I’m writing this on Wednesday night, we still don’t have gas (should be hooked up tomorrow) which means we don’t have heat, which means they can’t put the wood flooring in yet, which means the kitchen won’t go in until next week… which means… we probably won’t be moving in Thanksgiving week after all. The house should essentially be done, but there is a series of inspections the city has to do before we can get an occupancy permit and with it being a holiday week, it’s unlikely they will all happen before Thanksgiving. We can’t move in without an occupancy permit. The good news is that we were originally hoping we’d be in by Christmas and getting in by Thanksgiving was just a nice surprise. We don’t have any rush except excitement. Thank God we have a place to stay at my parents’ house for as long as we need.

So, what did happen this week? The HVAC was installed along with the hot water heater. We got power! At the point of me writing this, about half of our lights are installed. Door handles were installed. Jason and I took the master key on Tuesday night and had new specialty keys made for ourselves. We also picked up some LED lights to put up on our light shelf, but we need to get more. We guessed on the 100 lights/33 ft. set.

I had to run out to the hardware store to grab a couple of lights for closets that we had forgotten about. Jason was out of town and happened to have horrible reception while I was at the store so I couldn’t even consult with him. This was the picture I sent him to say, “I got these. OK?”

Outlets and some fixtures are in.

We were going to get fans for every bedroom but we decided to save money and get some cheapos for now and we’ll replace them one at a time later on.

We still got a nice fan for our bedroom and we’ll have one in the living room as well.

This is a silent “door bell” in Jason’s studio. Remind me to tell you about that later.

The HVAC looks like it was custom painted to match our house. It was not but that would be cool, wouldn’t it?

We like dimmers. We’re going to have a lot of dimmers.

It was foggy one morning while I was walking Lucy and I took this pretty autumny photo.

Lights! Jason, who is a perfectionist (I love that about him!) is straightening one of many crocked door handles.

We got these squarish door levers and it’s really noticeable if they’re a little bit off.

Jason is checking out the hall bathroom.

This is the first time we’ve really been able to see the tile and paint color because this is the only windowless room in the house and it has always been dark until now. That’s precisely why I wanted a light airy color on the walls (SW window pane) and I’m really happy with how it goes with the light gray tile and white tub (we’ll also have a white toilet, white vanity, white sink/countertop.)

Only 1 of 4 lights was installed so it’ll get a lot brighter in here.

We turned on all of the lights that we could and ran back outside in the cold to see what it looks like lit up. We have lights in the eaves around the house so once they’re installed it’ll really light up at night.

We have 2 workable outside lights on either side of the garage.

A custom house justifies custom keys right?

Kitchen:

Living room:

From mudroom/office (green room) pocket door looking toward the living room, kitchen and dining room:

Next update I should have pictures of finished tile work, finished hardwood floors, finished lighting, finished kitchen … hopefully a finished house!!


I Believe in Miracles

11/14/2012

Do you remember this story? One year ago tomorrow, a miracle happened while were in court feeling hopeless, thinking that we were about to say goodbye to our sweet baby girl after two months of fostering and falling in love with her. But, to our surprise she was taken out of state custody and put back into our arms so we could become her forever parents! We are so blessed, so thankful that we get to be this precious little girl’s parents!

November 10, 2011

November 11, 2012


New Home: Den/Playroom Plan

11/13/2012

Den/Playroom Room plan from myMCMlife.com

Sources

1. Sherwin Williams Greek Villa

2. Exposed concrete block wall

3. IKEA TROMSO day bed and pull out trundle $80 each (This is a big fat maybe. I was hoping our vintage gold pull out sofa would fit in here but it’s too big. We need some comfy seating that would ideally work also as a guest bed or maybe even a bed for a future child. No futons.)

4. Basketball hoop. $33 on Amazon. The top priority of this room is fun.

5. Natural hickory wood floors, like the rest of the house

6. Black chalkboard wall

7. Jason’s first guitar, which is now wall art. Second priority of this space is creativity and musical instruments will definitely be part of that.

8. Urban Outfitters zig zag rug, 5×7, in gray. Another big maybe but it’s my current top choice.

9. Pop & Lolli Build-a-Bot decal set. I won these on Design Mom’s blog and I’m pretty stoked to play with them… I mean, let some kids play with them.

10. Some kind of bookshelf to store toys, books, instruments. Vintage and metal painted a bright color would be nice. (This one is from UO.)

11. My old Apple iBook from 2002, which is still kicking, sort of, and hopefully has enough juice left to play some kid’s DVDs. Eventually we might add a small LED TV into this room.

12. Vintage footstool

13. Metal storage cart (painted a funky color) for toys and things

14. Child-size seating, like this metal folding chair, and maybe eventually a child-size table.