Saturday, January 31, 2009

Just a peek...

...into my newly organized laundry room which holds...

...everything I need, at an arm's reach, including...

...a mending basket for clothes that need buttons sewn back on, as well as...

...the kids' art supplies and favorite games.

I now have plenty of room to sort, wash, dry and fold all within this room.
So while it may not be the laundry room of my dreams, like this...

...or this...

...or this...

...or even these... is now a place that I am happy to be in and it functions perfectly as
just a laundry room!

Friday, January 30, 2009

I am so excited!

Why, you ask?
Because today was the day that my laundry room finally became
just a laundry room!

And I am so excited about it! You see, for the past year and a half this room has been working over-time as laundry room/office/craft room/storage room, all while washing and drying laundry for a family of five. It was far too much to ask and it was failing miserably. I wanted to take a picture of the "before", but it was so bad that I couldn't even bring myself to push the button on the camera.
It was that bad!

A while back we built a desk for a client and since it was too cold in the garage I had to paint it in my bedroom, so that it would be warm enough for the paint to dry and cure. It was then that I knew it was possible to carve out some space in our master bedroom and have an "office" all for myself.
(It makes me smile just typing that!)
My husband was not on board with my idea at the time, but yesterday upon opening the laundry room door and being greeted by a seemingly never-ending pile of clothes and a washing machine and dryer covered in cardboard, wood, paint and paintbrushes, he suddenly saw the light!

He began building me a desk right away!

Here is the corner of our room as it has always been and where I am putting my new office...

Here is a mock-up! Perfect spot, right?

My hard working husband building away...

The desk was built entirely out of materials that we already had. Bonus!

I love the wood grain! I'm a sucker for knots and imperfections! The more character the better, if you ask me!

This is a bookcase that we've had for many years. It has moved with us from state-to-state, house-to-house. And now it is getting a new lease on life!

A pretty routered edge on the top...

And brand new doors built from scratch by my handy man!

We added knobs and we're designing and building a top for it, so it will be like a hutch. It will sit behind my desk and hold everything that I need!

Today I got the laundry room all cleared out and now the only thing non-laundry in there is a basket full of the kids' art supplies which used to sit on top of the fridge. I was happy to be able to find a new home for it and the laundry room held the perfect spot for it. But other than that, all you will find is laundry inspired items!

And I'm quite happy about that!

Off to paint the desk and cabinet!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Metamorphosis Monday...

Today I am participating in my very first Metamorphosis Monday. It is hosted by Susan at Between Naps On The Porch. It's a fun way to see lots of "Before and After" pictures of projects that people have done all throughout blogland. Click on the picture of the butterfly to learn more and to see a list of this week's participants.

I am showing the transformation that we very recently made to our family room and kitchen.
You can find it here on my blog.

Be sure to make your way over to Between Naps On The Porch! It is chock full of inspiration and lots of "how-to" advice!


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Why didn't I think of that?

The other day, while browsing one of my favorite design blogs, I came across a post and had a definite "Why didn't I think of that?" moment! I think you may possibly feel the same. Here is their post and this is my take on it...

Many months ago I had purchased this Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day Spring Cleaning Kit at my local grocery store. The scent: Rhubarb. I love rhubarb and I also love the way Mrs. Meyers' products capture the true fragrance. I expected to use it right a way, but I decided that I should probably use up my other cleaning products before opening more bottles. Time passed and this little box got pushed to the corner of the laundry room shelf.

So, while reading Sherry and John's post on their blog, This Young House, it occurred to me that I had everything I needed to create my own aroma diffuser. A glass vase, wooden skewers from the grocery store and a pretty, scented liqiud. It was their idea to use the Mrs. Meyer's All Purpose Cleaner. A lightbulb turned on and I remembered that I had some waiting for me in the corner of my laundry room! Score! I had everything I needed. Cost: FREE!

I've had my brand new (home made!) aroma diffuser sitting on the mantle in our living room for a few days now and I can honestly say that the scent fills the room. Here's what I really love about it: I've had aroma diffusers before that use essential oils to provide the fragrance. I have never appreciated the clean-up from the oil since drips can happen when you turn the sticks over (to refresh the scent). I have learned that the oily residue can leave spots on some surfaces if not cleaned up immediately. With the Mrs. Meyer's All Purpose Cleaner it's a breeze to wipe up. It's just soap. Count it as "cleaning"!

I was thrilled that I already had everything that I needed right here at home. But, even if I hadn't, it would not have cost much to purchase these items. Ten dollars, maybe? Of course, this all depends on how extravagant you get with your vase! But $10 is far better than the alternative: spending $25 or more to buy one at the store and hoping that you love the scent once you get it home and put up on display.

So, much thanks to John and Sherry for sharing their idea!
Take it from me, it was easy! Try it out! You won't be disappointed!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Before and After...

The family room and kitchen before...

And how it all looks now...

with freshly painted walls and Board and Batten surrounding the space.

The cardinal points of the compass is an idea that I have had for a while, but with the holidays it was just to busy to turn it into a reality.

This is the reproduction map of our town that we got while in the city for our anniversary. My Handy Man (my husband) framed it in a beautiful piece of poplar. I love how it fits into the room and has meaning behind it...

We framed one of my husband's aeronautical maps of the Puget Sound in fence paneling. I love that it has a rustic feel to it. The map provided the perfect color, so it was a must for the room!

Adding the latitude, longitude and elevation was my husband's idea!

Our son loves to plant his apple seeds every time that he eats an apple. The amazing thing is that they actually grow!


I'm very happy with how it all turned out! The space is comfortable and cozy while still being fresh and bright. We were able to try something new for us by installing the board and batten and my vision for the compass turned out just as I had hoped. The family room and kitchen now feel like they actually fit in with the rest of the house. The disjointed feeling that the rooms had before wasn't something that I was willing to settle for. I think I accomplished a theme without it being "in your face" or over the top. This room acts as a true "family room" on a daily basis, so I needed to achieve the balance of functioning for my kids while still being a beautiful space for me! It was very time consuming and exhausting since I had to paint almost non-stop to get it done, but in the end the hard work is always worth the effort! And now I can finally say that this room is done!