meltdown

OMG, we have a BABY!

Welcome, Baby Beau! We all know the phrase, "expect the unexpected."  That couldn't be more true when it comes to pregnancy.  Late December, I woke up in the middle of the night and my water had broken!  Joe and I called my doctor and rushed to the hospital, where I spent a week an a half on bed rest, hoping to keep the baby in as long as possible.  Then, 9 days later, our little bundle of joy arrived!

Baby Beau made his appearance 7 weeks early, so he's spending some much-needed quality time with the incredible staff at the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, or NICU.  He makes progress every day and it continues to amaze me how quickly he is growing and developing.  Joe and I are completely and utterly in love with every inch of his teeny tiny little self.

Of course, my big plans for the nursery came to a screeching halt the moment I was hospitalized!  Thankfully, we have an amazing support system that stepped in to lend a helping hand.  Joe, his dad and some of our dear friends spent countless hours finishing up the wainscoting, drywall and electrical work before the flooring guy arrives to refinish the hardwood.  My mom has offered to sew the curtains, my dad will install the light fixture and then we just need to fill up the space with all of Beau's beautiful furniture, gifts and clothing that are currently filling our dining room to the brim!

The whole process didn't exactly go as planned, but life never does.  And that's what makes it wonderful.

Kitchen Renovation Update

If there is anything I've learned as a home renovator, it's that projects always take 10 times longer than expected.  That's certainly the case with our never-ending kitchen renovation.  What began as a project to keep me busy while Joey deployed to Afghanistan, has turned into a never-ending hell hole.  Okay, so maybe it's not that bad. We've actually accomplished a lot over the past 6 or so months.  I replaced outdated hardware with hidden European-style hinges, painted and installed new shelves inside the cabinets, installed pull-out baskets and other organizational do-dads, removed the old ceiling fan, patched holes in the walls, painted the walls, installed decorative molding on the cabinets, scrubbed and polished the antique chandeliers, installed the antique chandeliers, replaced the undermount lighting, replaced the countertops, installed the sink, faucet and plumbing, hung half of the crown molding and painted most of the cabinets.  Whew.  I'm exhausted just writing that!

Still on the checklist: finish painting the cabinets, finish hanging and painting the crown molding, replace appliances, install a backsplash and add some decorative touches.  Hopefully we can get it done within the next month or so... or maybe 6.  Wish me luck!

Below, you can check out some pictures of the progress.

That's Just Pindiculous

Pinterest Fail Pizza Cones

Don't serve these "Pizza Cones" to anyone with a sense of humor If you're half as interested in interior design as I am, inevitably you've stumbled upon Pinterest at this point.  The concept is brilliantly simple: create a virtual pinboard where you can gather all your ideas and inspiration.  From high fashion to gourmet cooking, there are limitless images and countless categories:  A kitchen iPad holder for recipes!  Glass floor over a creek!  Build an exploding chain reaction from craft sticks!

Inventive?  Yes.  Creative?  Yes.  Ridiculous?  YES.

There's some absolutely insane stuff on that website and thanks to the ever-wonderful-internet, there's now another website that celebrates all the ridiculousness Pinterest offers.  It's called Pinterest Fail and if your "exploding chain reaction from craft sticks" left you feeling a bit inferior, it'll make you realize you're probably not the only one.  Need a little pick me up?  Check it out.  (On a side note, check me out!  You can follow my not-so-ridiculous Pinterest boards here.)

Installing European-Style Hidden Cabinet Hinges

European-style hidden cabinet hinges There are things in this world that are fun.  There are things in this world that are not.  And then there are things that are so far beyond NOT FUN, I question whether the devil makes sinners do them as punishment in hell.  Installing European-style cabinet hinges is one of those things.  In fact, I've decided European-style cabinet hinges are the devil reincarnated.  I know, you thought he was clad in red and horns.  You're wrong.

I've spent DAYS taking off old, rusted hinges with stripped screws and replacing them with my shiny, new European style hinges.  The end result is fantastic, but the process is absolute torture.  First, I have to remove the door and hinges.  I then measure for the new hinges, drill a massive hole, drill two smaller holes, use pliers and a screwdriver to remove protective caps from the hinges, screw in the hinges, measure where they'll go on the cabinet, drill holes in the cabinet base, screw the hinges into the cabinet base and adjust the hinges until everything is level.

T...O...R...T...U...R...E.

Oh, did I mention I also ordered the wrong hinges... twice!?  These things are literally the bane of my existence.  Luckily, they're all finished and I really am thrilled with the end result.  I just have to add some decorative molding and painting these puppies is next!

If you're interested in switching out the hinges on your cabinets, I can offer a few tips:

  • Make sure you order the right "overlay."  That is simply how much the cabinet front overlaps the cabinet frame.
  • Purchase a plastic template to measure where to drill your holes.
  • Use a corded drill.  You'll keep having to recharge batteries if you go cordless.  Better yet, find someone with a drill press.
  • Make sure you don't drill your holes too deep and use the level on your drill to make sure they're not lopsided.
  • Each hinge has 3 adjustments (up & down, right & left, in & out), so if it's not exactly perfect when you first hang it, that's okay.
  • Fill holes with wood putty or caulk before you put the cabinet front back on.
  • Drink wine.  It helps.

Fashion Friday: Walmart Surprise

No Boundaries Tee Shirt

No Boundaries Tee Shirt Walmart and I are sworn enemies.  Actually, I take that back.  The Walmart on Tchoupitoulas Street and I are sworn enemies.  I cannot escape our local store without at least one unbelievable tale of human incompetence.  A few weeks ago, I saw a woman walking around the meat department with a ferret.  A freaking ferret.

Or how about this?  The store is so poorly managed a local rapper filmed this music video with half naked girls bouncing down the aisles and in the parking lot.  If you haven't seen it, you won't be able to tear your eyes away, although you may want to tear them out.  My point is this: given my past history with my local Wally World, I never, ever expected to find my new favorite tee shirt there.

Here's how it happened...

  • Me: Wait in line for 15 minutes.
  • Me: Get fed up and begin perusing the only thing around, a display of tee shirts.
  • Customer 1: Tries to steal my place in line.
  • Me: Choose the smallest shirt size available... a large.  Continue waiting in line another 15 minutes.
  • Checker: _____________ (no greeting or hello).  "Your soy milk won't ring up."
  • Me: "Can someone get me a new one?"
  • Checker: "That'll take too long."
  • Me: Run across store for new soy milk and return breathless.
  • Checker: ______________ (no thank you or goodbye).
  • Me: Get home, drink a glass of wine to calm nerves and try on new shirt.  Pleasantly surprised.

The shirt is made by "No Boundaries" and is soft, surprisingly well-fitting and the perfect shade of neon pink for Spring and Summer.  Did I mention it only cost $4.44?