Welcome To Our Little Big House On The Prairie

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A Slow, Frustrating Process

I think an important thing to do when you're slowly transforming your home - since unless you're loaded, will take years - is to take pictures so that overtime, you can see your space transform.  While my living room has a long way to go from what it is now to what I hope it will one day be, I can definitely say it is reflecting who I am more with each and every day week month that passes.

One of the more frustrating issues that I have to work around is the fact that anything we do here has to be done when we have funds available.  Scott and I had been married two years when we made the decision to cut up our credit cards and only spend what we have. Although I know that financially that's a sound decision, its certainly a frustrating one when one of your strongest personality traits is to get things done the right way, as quickly as possible.  Things left undone drive me nuts and right now pretty much every room in the house is in the process of some kind of half-finished something or other.  Of course the solution there is to not start something and then start something else without finishing the first something, but then, well, there ya go.  Life happens.

My goal right now is to get the stairwell finished by Thanksgiving - which to be honest, I haven't made much headway on.  I want the dining room/parlor finished before Christmas and the Living Room walls painted and new rugs before Spring.  I'm not really holding my breath on that one.  Eva's room will be done before Christmas as well, I just have to tether Scott to a leash and not let him out of her room until he sands down the skimcoat.  LOL!  Unfortunately, I cannot stand the feeling of sanding a wall, which is mind boggling because I don't mind sanding furniture.  But seriously, its like nails on chalkboard and sets my teeth on edge.  I can't handle it, so its one thing that he has got to finish and has been too busy to get around to doing. Maybe this weekend he'll have a chance somewhere in between wrestling tournaments and church.  Notice I'm not holding my breath on that one. :P

So, anyhoo...

For lack of anything better to post about, here's some before pictures of my living room and then current pictures of where we're at now.

Look how small Noah is!

And Eva!  Just a baby.  I think she was 3.
I have a really hard time arranging our living room because there is a door, closet, or window on every wall.  It makes it difficult to figure out where to put things.  I think eventually I'd like to have some kind of sectional or figure out a way to arrange the furniture to feel more cozy.

But, its coming along.  I've made a few changes here and there.  My biggest dissatisfaction is with the wall color and the floors.  I'm seriously considering painting the floor, but I don't know if I could bring myself to do it.  We kind of got bit in the butt by the folks that we had re-do our office and dining room/parlor floor, so I'm not really keen on calling anyone in to refinish them.  The first man we had come in had no clue what he was doing, although he advertised otherwise.  Scott did a lot of the work himself before getting completely aggravating, giving him $500, and firing him.  The 2nd people we had come in started where the other man had left off...  The floors were stripped, sanded, and all the nails either pulled or driven in as needed.  All they had to do was a little prep sanding, stain them, and varnish them.  A $900 bill later and the finish on the floor didn't even last a month before it was coming up in high traffic areas.  This really aggravates me because I specifically asked if what they were doing would stand up to the wear and tear of six children.  So, needless to say, given with what also happened with our windows not being completed (trimmed out) and then what happened with the 2 floor companies, I'm gun shy about hiring anyone to come in.  Where is the pride in workmanship nowadays????

Okay, so here's the living room so far...

What would you think about painting all the trim and the doors???
Is it a good idea OR
do you think I would need to be shot if I touched them with a paintbrush?  LOL!

See the floors???  UGH!  Drives me nuts!
Sorry for the quality, but I just could not get the camera to take a
bright enough picture and had to tweak it quite a bit so it didn't look so dark.  :(
I know another area rug would be a quick answer to our floor issues, but those are pretty spendy considering the size we would need to cover a good portion of the floor.  I've considered the drop cloth idea and think I'm probably going to go with that.  Does anyone else have any ideas???

Obviously, we have a lot of work that we need to do.  Its a little bare, but I consider that a victory because for too long I pretty much decorated the entire living room with my father's things.  There wasn't a single item that reflected my personality.  I've grown enough in my grief over his death that I've just recently put away all his things that didn't truly speak to me and started to let our home be our home, not his.  I've got a ton of furniture in there that I need to paint or refinish in some way - the desk that is the bottom the vanity that my parents gave me for Christmas when I was 15, the chair and foot stool that I picked up at a thrift store, the barnwood coffee table that I got for $15 on Craigslist, and the oak chair that needs the same treatment that its sister got for our family pictures.  I have a ton of stuff to keep me busy this winter.

The thing that I'm liking most about the changes that I'm slowly seeing here, is that our home is filling up with things I have done myself whether it be the buffet or wall decor that I've made on my own.  There really is something to be said about that.  And the best part is that I'm not having to spend a ton of money to do it.  And the hunt to find things is so much fun.  I had no clue that I would be as addicted to it as I am.  LOL!  Its almost more fun than watching my sons wrestle.  Notice I said almost.  HA!

And on that note, I'll leave you with these awesome pictures that a good friend of mine took Sunday at that super-tough tourney we went to.  Thank you, Ben!  These are fantastic!

Sorry, y'all!  Its wrestling season and we live and breath it.  I can't help mentioning it a little bit.  ;)

Have a terrific Tuesday!


Danielle said...

Wow! Laura, again, I can totally relate! We're not going into debt either, except for our mortgage, so decorating is a slow process, but I'm loving the process! It's an adventure to find things and transform them. I tell people my house is a work in progress. I'd totally leave the wood trim, as much as I love to paint stuff, that trim is AWESOME! I love what you've done so far!

Tanya said...

Know exactly how you feel. Your progress is so nice. I just love all the sweet touches in your living room. It is really cute :) Seems like as soon as you get it how you like it, then you're looking for something else to change, haha. It really does look nice Laura.

Brooke @ Spruce Your Nest said...

It looks great! I wouldn't paint the trim, I love it! All the little touches really add up :-)

Kammy Wielenga said...

Your house is GORGEOUS!!!!!!! That built in hutch? How awesome is that?! And the doors? Oh my. I just discovered in our Sherwin Williams a pile of about 50 (no lie) cans of mistints, etc. all the gallons were $1, quarts 50 cents, and he even gave me a can of paint thinner for a quarter... might want to check out your little paint stores - you can decorate literally on dimes if you hunt! I know you know all this.... ;)