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It’s SO close to being done, that I am posting the pics. I want you all to see the beauty that was designed and built before my eyes. From Gag-Me to Gorgeous in just under 3 months.

A few before’s just as a simple reminder….

Purdy, eh!

This was a three part transformation, both the first 2 parts seemed minor, but now that the project is almost complete, I appreciate those other parts so much more!

Part 1 was removing the wallpaper, this was done about a year ago (shortly after we moved in).

Part 2 was the floor. We put in a temporary floor, which I absolutely LOVE and think it may not be temporary!

Part 3 began on Mother’s Day. Hubs said to me “how about new cabinets for Mother’s Day?” I am not sure if this was just a desperate plea to escape the wrath of forgetting to actually go and get a gift for me, but whatever the reasoning….I WAS ALL OVER IT!

New cabinets also meant new countertop. You can’t just put the old counter on the new cabinets. New countertop meant new kitchen sink. New design meant new island which meant new barstools. New layout meant old kitchen table wouldn’t fit…..meaning……new kitchen table. Old nasty dishwasher meant new dishwasher.

This turned into a total kitchen remodel! Woooooot!

We listed our old kitchen cabinets on craigslist. We said make offer, remove yourself. We had $500 bucks handed to us and a crew of three large dudes come and remove the old cabinets.

Then our work began! The reason I am including these pics is to prove that we did MOST of the work ourselves. With ZERO prior knowledge or experience! The only thing we hired out was the electrical. And a not-so-minor plumbing issue we ran into. Otherwise….we learned as we went!

We tore out all of the old drywall from the ground up about 4 feet. We repaired some water damage both in the walls and floor. Moved plumbing. Moved the gas line. Moved a couple electrical outlets. Capped off some lights.

We tapped, mudded, sanded and mudded some more.

We textured.

We got it all ready for the cabinet install!

I shall skip forward a excrutiatingly LONG 3.5 weeks….

The we got the countertops installed.

Here are the pics you were waiting for. Or skipped down to see!


The particulars:

We used Home Depot for almost everything. They designed the new layout, they work directly with the cabinet company as well as the countertop company. We got natural hickory cabinets made by American Woodmark. We got the Rosa Gray Silestone countertops. (Supposed to be the strongest countertop available, its made out of quartz).

Bonus Features:

Undermount granite sink with instant hot water. It’s sooooo pretty!!!

My little corner of happiness:

It’s still not finished, we have some patch work to do on the ceiling, some touch up on the paint and trim, the floor molding….lots of minor stuff like that.

We also plan to replace the microwave with a stainless steel one (to match everything else….) and as soon as we find the right deal, we will install a 2nd oven in the island (left a blank cabinet for this purpose).

Special thanks to my father-in-law Harvey for being spectacular and helping us TONS. Also to Aaron and Nicolle whom have spent many nights here working with us. We couldn’t have done this without you guys!!!

Temporary AWESOMEness in Shower Form

We are ALL ABOUT bringing the temporary awesome!

Or in this case, temporary whitetrashyness. (wait…is that rude? or offensive? cuz I am DEFINITELY not trying to offend anyone!)


On paper, we have a 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath house. In reality, we have a 3 GIANT bedroom, 3 toilet and 1 shower house. So, this means, we have a TON of room to sleep (beds for 8 people, floor space for another 5 or so and a couple of couches if you wanna sleep in the living room) and only ONE……get that

O. N. E.


Well, because we are pretty fun (SUPER AWESOME) people, whenever people come to town, they OBVIOUSLY want to stay WITH us! We ALWAYS invite everyone to stay here…because we like to party and like to be the party….

So, this weekend we have visitors arriving to stay with us for a week. How many visitors is exactly what you are wondering, right? 9.

Yes, you read that right.


So, let’s do the math. 9 + 4 (that’s how many people LIVE here) = 13.

Back to my first point…..we have 1 shower.

Not diggin the people vs shower ratio here.

So……… we came up with a temporary solution…..


Here is the upstairs bathroom situation. It has a regular tub against the back wall, but there is a window in the center of that wall, so we couldn’t just attach a shower to it.

I went to my favorite store, Home Depot, and explained my “situation”.

I told them I wanted a round shower rod thingy like they put above claw foot tubs. They don’t carry those in the store….PLUS, this was temporary, I didn’t want to spend too much.

So, here is what I bought:

10 foot long 1″ piece of metal conduit for like $7
10 foot long 1/2″ piece of metal conduit that they put 2 90 degree angles in for me $2.50
2 metal brackets for closet poles $4.00
2 metal brackets for curtain rods $3.00
A new tub faucet that had the shower attachment $16
A shower head with a hose $17
A bracket to attach to the wall $1

I spent about $50 on hardware/supplies.


Then I hit up the ol Walmart…..(remember, this is TEMPORARY….)



It’s a bit white trash….but it works GREAT. Massive water pressure, no leaks and fully functional.

And one last photo for you……..

When the curtains are closed……it sort of looks like a scene from……..


you know…..




Ok…although we are UBER close to completion of phase 3 of this kitchen renovation, I MUST tell y’all about my floor. We had this old 80′s linoleum rockin the flooring in the kitchen. It looked swell agains the blue ribbon/flower wallpaper. Once the wallpaper was out the door, we knew we wanted a new floor. BUT we weren’t ready to invest in the hardwood flooring that we wanted, especially since we knew we were remodeling and didn’t know what the new layout would be. So….my mom was visiting and got a wild hair to put new flooring in the kitchen.

She measured. Drew a little diagram. Drug me to Home Depot.

She sat down with a flooring dude and starting working the numbers. She was about to drop about $1500 on NEW LINOLEUM.


I kinda sorta NICELY pulled her away by the arm and while shaking my head rapidly said “OH NO YOU DON’T!!”

The flooring guy laughed and said “Oh thank goodness!”

He then said “follow me.”

He led us to this product that was kinda purty! I said “oooh, what is it?”

It is 12″ square vinyl tiles. That you can install with or without grout.

The material cost just over $300. So, for a temporary floor, I am totally ok with this expense!

All we had to do to prep the existing floor was run a sander over the linoleum. Yep, we lay this stuff right over the existing linoleum.

I have never installed tile before, but hey, I don’t like to do things halfway, so I decided not only to install this MYSELF, but to not just do the traditional design.


AFTER: (painting trim white and removing wall paper makes a HUGE difference here as well)


Installation was super easy. To cut the tiles all I needed was razor blade. I used the little tile spacers. I used pre-mixed grout. I just LOVE the finished product.

I am so happy with this product that I am not even thinking about the wood flooring that I really wanted before. In fact, with my new cabinets that just got installed, this floor looks even better!

I have had several construction related people over and they have all thought this was a real tile floor. In fact, at least 2 of them didn’t believe me so they had to kneel down and feel it!

In 2 weeks, I should have a next to completely remodeled kitchen…. so stay tuned!

A Room Fit for a Princess…A SURPRISE!

My girl.

She’s my first baby. She’s 9 years old. For the majority of the last 7 years, she has shared a room with her little brother (7 years old) because we have had family members living with us.

She is a patient girl. RARELY complains.

Since we moved into this home in Northern California a year ago, we promised to eventually build a wall to split the huge bedroom that her and her brother share. The other large bedroom upstairs was used by my parents while my dad was fighting cancer.

Once my dad passed away and my mom moved back to Florida, we turned their room into our spare room/office.

Well….a couple of weeks ago, hubs had a brilliant idea. Why not turn that huge room into her princess suite. She totally deserves it. We can then eventually split the other room into son’s room and the office/spare room. It’s a win/win.

So, we shipped our baby girl off to Mt Meadows Summer Bible Camp for 5 days and we are working like mad to create this ‘room fit for a princess’.




Another view of my mad flower skillz…..

At approximately 11:30am, she will be home from camp. We will make up some excuse for her to go up to her room. She will see she no longer has a bed the room she normally sleeps in. We will have a camera set up in her new room to catch the reaction. She’s not a wildly emotional girl, so I don’t expect a big outward ‘freak out’…but I’m sure what we get will be amazing and totally worth it!

I love my Lexi-bug and I just know she is going to love her new diggs!

I can’t wait!!

HUGE THANK YOU to Aaron Picton and Nicolle Larkin for spending EVERY night here for the last week helping us. You two made this project happen!!



Temporaryville! Ever been here?

We are visiting Temporaryville, CA.

And we will be here for WEEKS!

You see, we ordered new kitchen cabinets. Which obviously means new countertops cuz…well….who puts old countertops on new kitchen cabinets. The manufacturer says they will ship on June 17th to the delivery agent. So I start working backwards because we said we would do all the demo ourselves and prep the kitchen.

THEN…{LIGHTBULB}….I had a BRILLIANT idea! What if…..JUST WHAT IF….someone wanted to BUY my current kitchen cabinets AND as part of the deal I would have THEM tear them out! Worth a shot, right?!?

I posted them on craigslist. I got several calls. Then one day a nice lady came by. She said her son wants cabinets for his garage. She made an offer….. BUT……





Ya, she said he could only buy them IF HE COULD TAKE THEM OUT THIS WEEK.


I have WEEKS until the new cabinets arrive AND then another 4 weeks after the cabinets to get my countertops. It’s not like I have a spare kitchen to use in the meantime. I mean this house….piece of crap…ONLY has 1 kitchen. What was I thinking. 1 kitchen. I bet NEW houses have more than 1 kitchen.

So…they came. They destroyed. They took.

Now, I have this fancy get up:

That’s right. My sink is mounted on 2 saw horses.

I gots several shades of paint. Portions of a tile backsplash. Remnants of wallpaper. Holes. And mold.

I have a rickety cabinet holding my microwave. Another little island on wheels.

My pantry is on shoe racks. I have PROOF.

Last but certainly not least.

Our front porch.

Now this…this is HIGH CLASS!

Yes that is the sink, which we actually just mounted on the saw horses and an old nasty dishwasher.

Everyone should have a dishwasher on their porch.

Thems decorations!

I am SUPER glad this post isn’t a scratch and sniff!

Dude. This place STINKS!

Check her out!

It’s not actually moldy….anymore.  It was. We cleaned….and bleached….and cleaned some more. No more mold, but the smell hasn’t completely gone away. The cabinet stewed in its moldiness for a good 2 and a half years while it sat vacant.

The size of this bathroom is actually pretty nice. But, it NEEDS a shower.  Currently the only shower in the house is in the master bedroom. So…..this has to change.

THIS is what I want! Get this, this tub is called “The Princess Shoe”. Teehee!!

The tub is 6 ft in length, so quite a bit longer than the current tub. This could make for an awkward too-close-to-the-potty situation, but can the toilet be easily moved to the right a bit? I dunno….?   Anyone?   Anyone??

And this, the shower solution!!!

And maybe something like this for a new cabinet/sink (but the color??):

I dunno! Is all this do-able?

Keep in mind, the trim will all be white.  The wall color…??? The stenciled roses, those are GONE! I was kinda thinking the wainscoting half way up the walls???  Ya know, like this:



*****With a cherry on top!!

Nizzzaaaasssty! I feel it necessary to point out at approximately this point past the front door, my husband tried to turn around and walk back out.

He.  Had.  Seen.  Enough!!

Purdy, eh! Who go’s to the paint store and say, hmmmmm….I think we will go with that REALLY, REALLY DARK GREEN! Also, lets point out again, the awesome dark trim around the windows, the floor, the ceiling & of course the little port hole or whatever that awkward round thing is…. Again, we have a gigantic BEAM going across the room, this one has huge snails or something on each side. The old school looking gas wood stove set up was pretty scary to me as well….

This green was a BEAR! It took primer. It then took multiple coats of the wall color. LAMESAUCE!

But it was the 2nd thing I HAD to attack once we moved in.

So, with a little love and a LOT of labor, I got pretty outstanding results! We did the same white trim around all the windows, doors, floors and ceilings. I chose one shade darker for the two walls next to the brick area.  That shade is called Cocoa Cream. I also really wanted to have some walls with that name! ;o) I removed the snail things & I painted the beam with the other color, Butter Pecan.

Ignore the furniture, we haven’t bought new stuff since 1998…once we remodel, we want to furnish according to the brains of an actual interior designer!

But, I find it ironic that our furniture is dark green!!

And….I kinda like the fake wood stove thingy now…we heated the entire house all winter with it and haven’t had to use the furnace yet.

Uber-cheap awesomeness!


The blue ribbons & flowers & patterns & borders…..BAH! Its the classic Mrs. Nesbits wallpaper theme…..and its GOTTA GO!  Also – see the dark trim everywhere….I can’t STAND it, it’s not my style! (Not that I have much style…)  And the GIGANTIC beam that goes across the dining area…..BARF!

I apologize if you like the wallpaper and the dark trim and the well…oooh, maybe you like the light fixture, its pretty much awesome in nutshell…..

Well, we had some dudes visiting us for work.  One guy lives in Seattle and the other guy lives in Idaho. They missed their flight. *SCORE* The dude from Idaho says “I bet we could remove this wallpaper pretty easily.” I say “WHAAA???” (in the minion voice from Despicable Me.  He says “but….is it textured underneath?” I say, “I dunno, rip some off and check!”

Sure enough, it was!

So, I began negotiating.  I offered a nice dinner and a place to sleep for a couple hours of their labor. They got right on it. We used warm soapy water to loosen the wallpaper.  Couple of us used sponges, others used spray bottles, both ways worked great. It peeled RIGHT OFF!

Once the wallpaper was removed, I went over each wall with TSP. Apparently something that will eat your fingers right off if you don’t use gloves….I doubt its really that bad…but I wasn’t about to test it out.

Once the walls dried, I was ready to rock & roll.

I picked my paint. Butter Cream in an eggshell finish for the walls and White Semi-gloss for the trim by Royal (Ace Hardware).  I chose them because they are close! Therefore when I run out it is not by an act of God that I get a refill!

Step 1  was complete! The walls and trim were complete.  AND, do you even notice the beam anymore? I painted it too!

I know, I know, I still have MASSIVE amounts of work still to do….but a complete kitchen remodel is in our future plans, so I don’t want to put too much work into the kitchen!  *cuz ALL women know, if it looks decent and “works” the husband is definitely NOT going to think we need a remodel!


In our easy sweet reasonable negotiations with the bank to purchase this place, we FINALLY came to an agreement that the bank would put a new roof on the house as well as repair the termite damage. It was quite the fight, but well worth it!

Who’d thunk a roof would make SUCH a GIGANTO difference in the appearance of the house, but WOWSERS! We also removed all the bushes and the hedge.  I wanted to SEE the front porch!

I also should mention that I painted the front door red.  I thought this house was required to have a red door! Here is a better front door shot.

So, the house is ‘presentable’ from the outside!  Stay tuned for Kitchen Renovation, stage 1!

Oh….how we have work to do! First off, let me post a few interior pics to get your attention!

Sooo much to say, huh! Don’t laugh too hard at my super AWESOME new kitchen appliances.  Our inspector said our stove manufacturer has been out of business since the 70′s! Aren’t you jealous of my GREEN walls? How about the dark trim EVERYWHERE, not just covering the windows, the floors and ceilings have the same trip! Lucky me!  Oh and yes, that UN-BELIEVABLE jetted tub in my master bath actually has the ‘spa rules and warnings’ posted on the wall near the DIAL YOU TURN FOR AMOUNT OF TIME YOU WANT THE BUBBLES ON!!!

Too much awesomeness to detail out in this post, but I do want to share a few of our actual indoor plans…..

1 – PAINT! Everything! The trim will all be white and the walls will mainly be a light tan called Butter Pecan. (sorry, but the wallpaper HAS TO GO!)
2 – Full Kitchen Remodel – this will be in a couple years!
3 – Split large bedroom upstairs into 2 rooms.
4 – Master Bath Remodel
5 – Upstairs Bath Remodel
6 – Build new garage in front of existing garage and turn existing garage into entertainment room (cuz we likes to partaaayyy!)
7 – Open up solid walls around staircase and just have banisters.
8 – New lighting throughout the house

Those are just the plans/ideas I can rattle off the top of my head.

I     am     excited!