June 28, 2012

Backyard - 10 months later

Just a few before and afters of our backyard. We have more work to do (always).










There's always more to do (like maybe get rid of all the old wood behind the swing. I didn't realize how much our indoor / outdoor rug faded since last year - a little disappointed in that - but in our insanely warm June in San Francisco, we've been using the heck out of it.

*very exciting summer stuff is happening in our life that I won't talk about till its all done so it doesn't get jinxed.

June 19, 2012

T's Montessori Room - Color Updates

When we first moved in, this is what we started with in here.

Note the uneven temporary curtains, furniture that didn't work (but was perfect for his old room), and the mattress on the floor (oops - ended up getting mold underneath).


Mama couldn't stand the uneven curtains, so they just came down. We bought a new bed, built a low frame, and moved out the furniture that didn't work.


Finally, the front facing bookshelves (spice racks) were hung.


I found some orange curtains at Cost Plus (or what you call "world market"), hung his chinese checkers board, and got him a down comforter (and let him use our westelm organic white duvet cover - another oops).

I am LOVING the way his room is looking now. Not quite as calm and serene, but much more complete.

The curtains are finally hemmed (well, hemmed using iron on hem tape). The west elm duvet cover went away (after a botched dye job), and T is now using our chevron striped one.


We have some photos of his cousins that need to be hung (leaning up against the wall).

See the balls on top of the cabinet? From our Christmas tree :)

June 15, 2012


I think I used to be a pretty anxious person.

Walking through the halls at school, before any test, talking to new people, attending a sporting event - all gave me a major stomach ache.

I don't know if anyone would have ever guessed that about me.

As I've gotten older and more confident that's pretty much gone away. I can make presentations in front of hundreds of people, talk to people at parties, walk into a room of strangers and feel okay. I never get nervous before job interviews or even about natural childbirth. I just knew I could do it (get that job, push that kid out) and I did.

I thought this was because I don't really care what people think about me anymore and that I've gotten good at my job so I know what I'm doing. I thought that being comfortable with my strengths and weaknesses has made me pretty badass.

I'm starting to think it is because of the hormonal birth control I've been on.

I've been on regular hormonal birth control for about 10 years. I've tried different things.
Several kinds of pills (major mood swings and not being reliable to take them), the depo shot (20 lb weight gain), and finally the mirena IUD. I love my mirena. No periods, regulated hormones so few mood swings, no huge changes.

I had it taken out to have T - we got pregnant a month later - and as soon as I was ready, I got one put in again.

I had it taken out recently (for personal reasons) and I'm a freakin' anxious mess.

The hour before preschool drop off my heart is pounding in my chest. Every day.

My cousin just came over, and I sat here thinking our exchange was weird and maybe I offended her for like 10 minutes (with my heart pounding in my chest). All we said was "hi" and "bye".

I'm starting to wonder if the Mirena's hormones were helping regulate my anxiety? That's the only thing that is really different in my life since this started.

Anyway - not sure what to do but I suppose I should see a specialist or something...

June 13, 2012

Bathroom Renewal

Anyone know what this thing is? Untitled

No, seriously. It used to be on our bathtub faucet Untitled

See it there? We've been staring at it for a year and I was pretty disgusted by it (an off white rubbery thing), but Bubbs was convinced that it was holding the whole bathroom together or something, so we left it on. Till I got a bug up my butt and demanded it come off.

Two minutes later, this is what we saw:


A perfectly normal faucet. What the heck was that thing for?!

That same day...I bought this from the hardware store:

If our bathroom was going to be full of pink, craked, nasty tile, at least the grout could be white instead of yellow. This stuff is AMAZING. It took like two hours total and the difference is stark. Of course, I didn't take pictures. But, trust me. AMAZING stuff.


Same trip I bought a new detachable shower head and new baskets to hold our stuff. The old shower head bordered on abusive the way it attacked you with water and we had an over the faucet shampoo holder that wouldn't work with our new head. The total trip was like $40 in supplies and a million dollars in reward.

And, since we're doing bathroom pictures, I'll leave you with this one:


June 2, 2012

Piano Genius

Cutting and Sawing and Drilling and Dreaming - Closet Fun


This monstrosity was my closet.

I don't have drawers small enough to be useful underwear and sock drawers so I used these cubes that sat on my closet floor along with 50% of my shoes.

My closet has a single narrow door with a lot of space on either side - but it is super dark and not set up in any way that is useful.  Plus the bar looked like it was about to snap.

I headed to my local cramped hardware store (if you've only been to home depot, you haven't lived).

There were white plastic options for cheaper, but I bought three sets of these.


They sat in a bag in the front hall for about a month.

Then, one day, during my lunch break, I got a bug up my butt to do something about my closet (that bug might have been the house exchange coming up.

First, I took got out the drill.

Second, I looked up you-tube videos so I could figure out how to use the drill.

25 minutes later - I figured out how to load the screwy thing into the zizzer thing.

Then I removed the pole.

Um, it was PVC pipe.


In yet another stupid idea from the people here before us (to be archived with painting latex over oil based paint), rather than spend the money on a wood closet bar, they bought PVC pipe.

In yet another stupid idea from US, I just cut the PVC to the lengths I wanted it rather than buying wood.

I used the only saw we have that you don't plug in and cut the PVC into equal (sort of) pieces (after measuring the closet with a flimsy tailoring measuring tape.

Once they were cut and the totally poison PVC sawdust was floating throughout my garage, I went back in to start to re-assemble.

Using my handy dandy thinker hat, I figured that I could start the drill holes with nails.


After an hour of prep, I got my first bar up.

On the other side, I placed two bars - one on top of the other.  I figured dresses and coats could go on the tall bar and shirts and pants could go on the stacked bars.

There was a bookcase that had been abandoned in the garage, so I singlehandedly (well, actually, doublehandedly) carried it back upstairs and loaded my shoes and my underwear/sock boxes on top.

I also took some spare nails to hang belts and bras.


Ta Da!


Oh - and I finally put a lightbulb in (it has been over a year) and the light doesn't work in there. Figures. Thus, aside from my crappy photography skills, the crappy pictures.