Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Talented friends

While on the topic of talented friends, I thought I'd share another one!  A friend of mine on facebook agreed to make some sweet hats for me.  Well, not for me per say, they are gifts for my daycare friends.  And aren't they sweet.....!

We've got fans of Minnie mouse, Elsa and Batman....

And Scooby, Dusty Crophopper and a sweet little firetruck for a boy whose Momma is a firefighter.  I'm looking forward to handing these out soon!  Thank you Laura for doing such a wonderful job!

Monday, 24 November 2014

Meet the Bloosey family


There's a couple of friends I'd like you to meet.  The Bloosey family.

They are generally known as Mr. & Mrs. Bloosey...but on occasion have been the Bloosey brothers, twins, sisters, cousins etc...
Mrs. Bloosey on the left wasn't always a Mrs (see how the Mr. has his arm around her?  He's protective like that.  He's a keeper).  She was given to Reeve on her 1st birthday and lived the single life until last Christmas.  Reeve's desperate wish was that Bloosey become a twin for Christmas.  We looked into it and found that Bloosey was no longer made.  It was a retired stuffy.
We searched further on eBay after a friend suggested this route.  We found her twin in Atlanta, Georgia. She was bought and shipped out immediately and we did a happy dance.

After the Bloosey twins were united, we thought perhaps we could do a little better.  Enter a fabulously talented friend, Angie of Button Up Boutique.  We asked her if perhaps she could make a "Bloosey bag" and some clothes for the twins.  She DELIVERED.

A beautiful messenger style bag, made of the softest material and filled to the brim with outfits made from her material scrap bin.

You will never see a better dressed Blue Moose in church, I tell you.  Never. And they never worry about the cold....having been made a most lovely knit toque (made to accommodate those grand antlers of course) and a selection of lace infinity scarves.

This year?  We thought, maybe we'd get them somewhere to sleep.  They are usually lovingly tucked into a bin or basket...whatever Reeve can find quickly at the end of the day.  We picked up this sweet bed from IKEA.  It has been stained and is awaiting it's bedding guessed it, Angie.  She immediately agreed to make up some linens, a duvet cover and a knitted throw for the end of the bed.  A knitted throw is always necessary, you know.  

To say that we are excited for Reeve to open this gift is an understatement.  She will be SO thrilled.  Many thanks to Angie for generously agreeing to make this for us...she is a busy woman running her shop, raising and schooling her 4 kids and being a fantastic wife and homemaker.  Angie...thank you from the bottom of our hearts!  We're pretty sure the Bloosey family will be thrilled as well.  In they are.  All smiles and waiting for their comfy bedding.  In their respective nightwear, of course.

 What about you?  Any super awesome gifts you're excited to give your kids?  We do our fair share of shopping at the mall and big box stores, but it's great to support our local artisans and talented friends as well! 

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Painting Progress

We did it!  We made some significant progress in Riley's room.  We have a long ways to go, but for now...we're happy :)  A couple weekends ago, we decided that we just had to take the plunge.  Stop planning for the perfect weekend, etc....just DO IT.  So, Friday night we prepped Riley's room and emptied it out.  Last time I checked in, it looked a little like this...

But after emptying, patching and sanding...

 It looks like this...

I think this photo is after one coat...looks a little blotchy here.  Regardless, it is a wonderful, calm gray.  I am currently working on the last coat of paint for her dresser re do and we're rather happy with it's results (and can't wait to put her clothes away!!).

Next up:  this horrid light needs to go.  Hopefully SOON!  Aaaand, if you pan out...we've still got a lot of other things to work on too ;)

And in other news....we decided to use up what primer we had in the house, and put Riley to work while she was banned from her room.  She finished 4 shelves for the pantry before running out of primer....ah well, it's a start!!

Thursday, 10 July 2014

Teensy tiny progress, our summer to do list.

It's happening.  Ever.So.Slowly.

Truthfully....we are tired.  I think we are experiencing a dose of burnout.

So, we are taking that as a cue to slow down.  We are sleeping in.  Going for more walks.  Drives to the beach.  Not letting the list timeline worry us.  We'll get there....when we're good and ready.

I, in particular, have been fighting a strange virus.  At least that's what I think it is...and it has robbed me of so much energy.  I have an appointment in hopefully I'll have things sorted out by then or shortly after!

With all that being said....we ARE still moving, albeit at a snails pace.  When I posted last, I offered our brown closet organizer and Sarah said she and her soon to be husband would love it.  Her dad Ben and brother Matt came over last week and wonderfully took it off our hands and it has gone to live in PEI with them.  My sincerest and best wishes to them as they start their lives as husband and wife THIS weekend!!

Henry has made progress filling and patching nail holes in the walls and ceilings in Riley's room.  We are planning on making some significant progress this weekend as well.  We are HOPING our physical energy level will match our mental one :)

A wee bit of progress in the pantry as well.

Can you see it?  That tiny strip of drywall.  That's it.  I told you it was a wee bit :)

And the linen closet?  It looks worse than it did.

And staining the shed?  How about we come back to that during summer 2015.

Cheers to taking the burnout cue and burning the timeline.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014



Checking in today to share my summer project list.  Do you have one of those? 

Do you ever just get so excited about starting so many awesome, fun projects that you don't actually start any of them?  Oh, I dream and scheme and chart and list to my hearts content.....and then Saturday rolls around and my bed is just so comfy, and there are yard sales to pillage (I mean, where else are you going to find all the treasures your, at this point non existent project, will need?) and then the children have birthday parties to go to, there are tubs to be scrubbed, laundry to be folded, beds to be made, floors to be vacuumed, etc...

And when you do have those free moments....there are books to be enjoyed and family movie nights to attend.  The park with its splash pad beckons, and the sidewalks call out to be enjoyed.

You get the point.  All good and lovely things....but not a lot of time left for the ol' project list.

BUT, if I haaaaad to be honest, I squander time sometimes.  I'm not always busy.  I often have time for a project and I choose not to do it.  Why?  I don't know.  Lazy?  Complacent?  Maybe I just need some time to do nothing....yes, sometimes I do need that.  And that's ok.

However.  There are spaces in my house that aren't working well for us and I find myself cleaning up the same messes time after time and I'm getting irritated with myself.  Jamming the same junk back into the same spot (hello papers from school year 2012-2013 still on top of the toaster oven!), reaching for something only to have stacks of things fall over and scatter, etc....

SO.  We're making that list.  It's a relatively short one for us.  But, we want something attainable.  We plan on focusing ONLY on these items and letting the rest of the list go for now. 

First up:  the linen closet.  Not HORRIBLE, but not great either.  Most definitely could be better.  We're on it.  This closet needs to hold A LOT.  Beach towels, cleaning supplies, blankets, camping cots, batteries, light bulbs, candles, extra bathroom essentials, gift bags, vacuum, etc...  When the closet was initially made, I opted to have the drawers and shelves stay their natural wood colour.  I'm kicking myself.  I don't like it.  Am I crazy to paint it all white?  What would you do?  Shut the doors on the natural wood and leave it? 

 Paint cans used to live in here and it bothered me.  But during a morning perusal of a friends yard sale goods, we found a nifty little cupbaord for $1, that sits in our laundry room (don't judge it's current unsightly existence) and holds all the paint nicely for now. 

Next up (and this is where things start to get a little more ugly): spices and baking cupboard

I have threatened to throw that basket of spices clear across the room many a time.  I hate it.  Henry hates it.  And I'm not quite sure why we've lived with it for this long (pretty much 16 years).  On the right is our previous coat closet.  We are turning it into a pantry to allow for some more organized kitchen living.  On the bottom right you can see the shelves leaning against the wall. They've been sitting there ready to be painted since...oh, I don't know...MARCH.  Lazy I am.  

Next up: Riley's new-to-her dresser.  *Stacey hangs head in shame* 

We are in the process of re painting all of the upstairs bedrooms.  I'm also planning on redoing this dresser for Riley.  While I get my act together, the girl is living like this.  Yikes.

Alrighty.  So, the list looks like this:

  Linen Closet
  * buy and organize bucket/baskets for linen closet.
  * possibly paint shelves and drawers
  * install handles on drawers

  Spice cabinet
  * clean out and sort which items will go into pantry
  * clean cupboard and organize items going back into cupboard
   * fill holes/cracks, sand, prime and paint inside
   * prime/paint shelves and install
   * organize items going in the pantry

  Riley's dresser
  * sand dresser
  * prime and paint 

We do have a outdoor project we'd like to get to this year namely staining the shed and making new flower boxes.  We've given ourselves until the end of the summer to get everything done.  I know that if we put our backs into it, we'll have no problem getting everything done.  We can be very productive if we want to be!!  We may even get around to the "secondary list"...Haha!!

What about you?  Anything fun on your summer project list??

  *side note:  this brown closet organizer is free to a good home...know anyone who could use it?!*


Monday, 14 April 2014


So, let's get to it.

This bathroom is hard to photograph thanks to not having a window.  So, it would most likely be a challenge for a skilled photographer...which I am not.  Forgive me.  I also don't edit any photos....again, forgive me.  I did the best I could and am happy to be able to actually post another "done" room!!

Let's just remember where we started:  First we had this.

And then a little more of this ...UGH, when I look at these pictures, I can still SMELL that day. 

Henry worked hard (I'm not sure if he's ever NOT worked hard at anything he does).  I lugged laundry to my wonderful sister in laws because, well there was no water and our house smelled like sewage.  Henry was very, very ill the next day.

So, in this little bathroom we knocked out three walls, swapped the tub and sink areas, slightly moved and changed the door swing, found (hallelujah ~ really, it was horrible but how awful it would've been to find it AFTER the tub was installed, our floor laid and carpet was in) and fixed a major sewage issue, waterproofed, laid a heated tile floor, drywalled, painted and decorated.  We set our budget for this room at $1500 and came in under that total thanks to reusing some fixtures, some DYI-ing, Kijiji shopping and a big blunder on Home Depot's part.  Thank you Home Depot.

Now, here's the same view.

Am I the only one who loves the texture a great basket adds?  The brass shelf was a Goodwill find for $14.  I loved it immediately and it serves its purpose well.  I love its versatility, knowing I could set it in just about any room and find a use for it.  Besides the bath and hand towels, it holds nail clippers, tweezers, pumice stone, bubble bath, bobby pins and cotton balls.  And that beautiful snake plant I bought while in Colassantis this March.  The basket holds extra toilet paper.  The print on the wall is made by my friend Jen.  You can get one too...just head on over here and check it out!

 Since we loved how the plank wall turned out in our bedroom, we decided to plank this wall as well.  We made the mistake of using clear pine, not finger joint pine. It was warped and far more difficult to work with.  In the end, we're happy enough, but it was a lesson learned.  We didn't bargain shop for a toilet, going with an American Standard Cadet 3 model, known for it's water saving features and efficiency.  The "N" towels were a small splurge from my first trip to West Elm, at $10 each but I loved the color, and they are very nice cotton (my mother in law introduced me to quality cotton and I'm hooked).  I love the tassels and of course the "N".  They make me happy :)  

 Here is our home made vanity in action..supporting our clearance sink and faucet.  Combined cost was $62.00.  We are unsure whether we are going to keep the hampers underneath.  When we bought them I thought it would be great to have one for clean towels and the other for dirty clothes.  But now that we've been using them, emptying the dirty hamper is just one more step in an already time consuming chore known as laundry.  I'd rather us take an extra 10 steps and put them in our sorted laundry hampers in the laundry room.  Not to mention, I don't love the thought of dirty laundry sitting in the bathroom.  We may opt to have another floating shelf built and stack the extra clean towels on it instead. The hampers will find a new home in the boys' room possibly.

 Another great towel, this one is a peshtemal from Istanbul.  I've read a fair bit about the benefits of Turkish cotton.  Depending on how we like the hand towels, we may swap out our regular bath towels for all peshtemals.  We'll see.  The photograph is one we picked up from a booth in White Rock, BC during our vacation last summer.

One of our favorite things about this bathroom is the heated floor.  Our floor is a marble hexagon tile and since we are in the basement on concrete, it would've been COLD.  When shopping for the tiles, Home Depot had a price labeling discrepancy.  The tiles were labeled as being $1.67 per square foot on the shelf, and labeled $14.99 per square foot on the display.  Henry caught it, asked the flooring guy about it (while I nervously chewed my finger nails in the lighting department).  I came back to Henry with a big grin, giving me the thumbs up.  We cleaned them out...40 tiles for @ $75, instead of $675.  This made the decision to spend $350 on the heating much easier ;)  (Clearly this room isn't DONE.  Now that I see this picture, I realize we forgot to change out the last switch and outlet...they were old ones we had kicking around and clearly are a little dingy!).

And lastly, because every room should have a little fun!  Wanna slap one on your tub too?  You can find it here.  It makes me smile every time I see it and my kids think it's rather hilarious :)

And there you have it :)

Monday, 7 April 2014

Bathroom Reno Part II

Hello friends.
Good weekend?  Over here, it was good.  Very good.  Relaxing and productive all rolled together.  And the weather?  Sunday was a stunner!  Blue skies, a wee bit warmer.  We could hear birds chirping their good morning song, and walked out of church into blissful sunshine.  Lovely I tell you.

I think I'm almost ready to share our bathroom.  It's pretty much done.  I'm not doing anything else to it...I'm starting to over think, over analyze...and it's getting silly.  We're done.


Sooooo, today I'll just share a couple of behind the scenes stuff.  The stuff that takes for.ever (especially if you're someone like me who has trouble waiting....).

First up, the vanity.  My dad is every kind of awesome.  I showed him my inspiration picture and he delivered.  The coolest part is that this was built out of scrap leftover lumber that we had already paid for, so instead of expecting a building material bill, it was "free"!  He built it, I stained it.  We're a good team, my dad and I.

I used Minwax Dark Walnut.  My favorite.  One coat of stain, three coats of poly to protect it from water.

Dad had a piece of steel welded, cut a hole through the bathroom wall (accessed from the furnace room) and that is what the majority of the weight rests on. 

Below, pictured is the steel on the furnace room side. 

Next up...the medicine cabinet.  Being that we don't have much storage, we knew we needed more than just a mirror...we needed function.  I think they're ugly but I've learned to look past it.  And truthfully, I was feeling far too lazy to try to figure anything else out.  It was too deep just hanging on the wall, sticking past our light fixtures and so we Dad cut a hole and fastened the medicine cabinet in.  I painted it, he installed it.  Like I said...we make a good team.

 This is taken from in the furnace room.  We juuuuuust had enough room without having to move water lines.  

Our sink.  Our sink was regularly priced at $149.  We bought it on sale for $89.  Then, we were in Home Depot a month or so later and we decided to check the price (because we are like that...we wander isles and check for further discounts and then go get our money back.  Anyone else?)  Lo and behold...discontinued price of $36.  London didn't have any, so we called Dad Sluys who dropped everything he was doing and high tailed it over to Home Depot because he knows my heart was racing at the thought of missing out on a good deal calmly stated that he would try to get there the next morning.  He likes to do that to me...give me little heart attacks and test my well known lack of waiting skills.

He got one.  I recovered.

We needed an 8" spread faucet.  Not very common (probably why that sink was discontinued?) and our choices were least the ones within our relatively small budget.  We set our sights on a trusty, solid, reliable and somewhat boring American Standard brand faucet.  The price was $129.99.  We waited to see if a sale would come up.  While waiting, we visited Port Huron as we regularly do and thought we'd pop into Home Depot for something...probably blinds or something like that.  While there, Henry mentioned that maybe we should check their price and see if they offered anything different.  Same faucet...clearance for $26.00.  We looked past it's plain appearance, scooped it up, paid and high fived our way out the door.

And lastly...the ceiling.  Because the plumbing for the upstairs bathroom and many other pipes, tubes and wires etc, that we need to be able to access run through this ceiling, we had to put in a drop ceiling.  Or perhaps not...I'm sure their might've been something else we could've done, but again...I didn't feel like figuring it out and a drop ceiling was the most cost effective.  I was also probably too busy counting my sink/faucet savings to care.  I just try not to look at it...problem solved!

I'm hoping to post a full reveal sometime this week ~ which should include some far more attractive pictures ;)