Laundry Room Makeover {Before & After}

Okay, hold on now, I hope you don't fall out of your chair because I am finally showing you the finished laundry room!  I can't believe that it's been close to a year since I started my laundry room makeover.  Thanks to some fantastic ReStore bargains, I was able to do it for just under $300.00!

In all honesty, it has been done for awhile, but this room is only 36 square feet with no windows or natural light.  (Which is why I chose to paint it a dark saturated color).  It's a challenge to photograph and I really wanted to capture how beautiful the paint color is.  It's the first thing people comment on when they see the room.  I don't think I exactly captured it, but I did my best and had to let go of my perfectionism, otherwise, you would never see this room.  Anyway, why don't I just show it to you?
Here's a little reminder of how our laundry room looked before the makeover.  It was in such a sad state, that I had dubbed it, "The Arm Pit."  And if you are dying to see more of the before, you can read this post.  Essentially, the room had nothing in it except for the ironing board and the washer and dryer.  All of the laundry detergent and cleaning supplies sat on top of them in disorganized chaos.  
It all started with some laundry room inspiration that I wrote about here.  Then, I showed you the laundry room mood board that I put together in this post.
The cabinets were a ReStore bargain at just $11.25!  They were a golden oak and I painted them with Behr's Polar Bear in semi-gloss that I already had.  It's the same color that I use on all of the trim in our house.  I kept our old washer and dryer, but the Sherwin Williams Smokey Blue paint color really made them pop, and you'd never know that they're 13 years old now.  (Except for the fact that the handle is broken on the washing machine and we have to turn it on with needle nose pliers). 

I replaced the hardware on the cabinets with these polished nickel ones from Home Depot.
The ironing board holder was a DIY project that I wrote about here.  It's an old cabinet door that I got at ReStore for $1, painted white and added some hooks onto it.  
The ironing board cover is from Pottery Barn, I fell in love with the pattern and the colors in it.  The ironing board is the focal point of the room.  I made certain to  hang it so that it's the first thing you see when you walk in.  It was also the inspiration for the color choices in the room.  It functions as artwork more than anything else, since it will only be used a couple times of year.  ;)
The rug was a HomeGoods find.  The muted yellow tones match perfectly with the ironing board cover and I love the contrasting chevron pattern with the floral of the ironing board cover.
To add some warmth and texture to the room, I upgraded our plastic white laundry baskets with these woven natural ones that I found at HomeGoods. 
One sits on top of the washing machine, to hide all of this ugliness.
The other one fits perfectly on top of the laundry sorter.  The photograph hanging above it had been sitting in my closet for a very long, long, time.  I got it years ago at an auction to benefit the non-profit that I worked for at the time and never really found a place for it until now.  
Despite the fact that I painted this room a dark color and there are no windows, it's not dark at all because of the bright white cabinets and the chandelier.  The chandelier was also a ReStore find, and I wrote about its transformation here.
I did replace the flooring and also patched some drywall tape that was hanging down from the ceiling.  I still need to do some organizing in the cabinets, but I am thrilled with how this room turned out!  It is so bright and cheerful now, and I no longer dread walking into it like I used to before the makeover.  It was definitely worth all of the time and effort I put into it.  
Here's a breakdown of the budget for you.

$11.25 - Cabinets - ReStore                                            
$15.00 - Cabinet Hardware - Home Depot
$20.00 - Glass Canisters -Target.com                      
$27.00 - Ironing Board Cover - Pottery Barn                   
$  8.00 - Ironing Board Holder - DIY - $1 door, $6 hooks, $1 paint)                            
$50.00 - Laundry Sorter - Target.com                             
$15.00 - Rug - HomeGoods 
$40.00 - Baskets - HomeGoods                                           
$60.00 - Flooring - Lowes                                               
$10.50 - Chandelier - ReStore- ($7.50 chandelier, $3.00 spray paint)
$40.00 - Wall Paint - Sherwin Williams Smokey Blue     
$296.75 - Total

Thanks so much for following along and for your infinite patience with how painstakingly slow it takes me to finish projects.  If I had my way, I would spend all of my time doing projects around my house, getting rooms finished quickly and blogging about it.  It's just that these silly little things like my day job and other responsibilities tend to slow all that down.  I do want you to know though how grateful I am for you hanging in there with me.  You're the best!

Thanks for dropping by and reading today!


Olivia's Room - A Plan of Sorts

One of the things that I really wanted to tackle this summer was Olivia's room.  I thought that I was going to be able to get it done, until I found out about a health issue that I'm having to address.  I wrote about it a little in in my last post.  

Olivia told me that she wanted the color combination of navy, coral and yellow for her bedroom.  So, I've been picking things up here and there with that color combo in mind.  Here's a snap shot of some of the things that will be going into her room.

The yellow, fluffy, pouf is from Target.  Olivia fell in love with it when she saw it and insisted she had to have it in her room.  I think it's fun for a teenaged girl's room.
The blue ikat Cynthia Rowling bedding I found at Marshall's.  I got two pillow shams and a quilt for something like $55.00.  We both love it.
It will be paired up with this white bedding from Target.  I want a lot of white in the room to balance out all of the color.

I also found two of these decorative boxes at Marshall's during a separate shopping trip and couldn't resist them.  I'm thinking they'll be great storage on her desk or nightstand.
I found this rug (it's folded in half here) at HomeGoods and I'm probably going to frame it and make a pin board to go over her desk with it.
For the walls we both agree that we love Benjamin Moore's Gray Owl.  I'm kinda' jealous actually, and I'm hoping that maybe there will be some left over and I can paint my bedroom walls with it.  Love this color.
Via Emily Henderson's Blog - You have to read this post, it's hilarious!
Olivia's other request for her room was to have a chalkboard wall.  I have to admit that this does not thrill me, but I figure it's her room and I want her to be happy.  Besides she lives in her room.  I feel sort of like this is a hotel and she's a guest who just comes out for meals and to shower.  Except she doesn't pay for her room and she certainly never tips the maid.

I decided that since she wants the chalkboard wall, that I would do a navy blue accent wall behind her bed.  
She has a white iron bed similar to this one and the dark wall behind it will make it pop.  

Olivia and I are currently at a stand off on the navy blue color we want the chalkboard accent wall to be, so I'll have to show you that in a future post.

We also need to declutter and get rid of stuff she doesn't use anymore.  This is going to require a large shovel because every time we get her room cleaned out, when I go back in there (maid service), we're right back to clutter everywhere!

I'm working on a plan for her closet and also for the furniture layout too.  Since I won't be able to get her room finished this summer, like I had originally planned, my goal now, is to get it done before Thanksgiving.  Or, maybe just by the end of the year?

'Til next time!  Have a great day and I'm so glad you dropped by.


Catching Up

Hi guys!  Just wanted to give you all an update about what's been going on around here these past few months.

April and May were extra busy for us this year.  There were promotion ceremonies, graduations, plays, guitar recitals, birthday parties, family pictures, field trips and lots of dinners out and all during the busiest time of the year at my job for me.  Sleep?  Who needs sleep?  Not me.

I'm not complaining though, since these are all the best things to be busy with in life.  Although it is nice, sometimes, to just sit around and watch an entire season of Burn Notice on Netflix and eat popcorn for dinner.  Not that I've ever done anything like that.  Ever.

Jacob finished 5th grade and will start middle school next year.  It's hard for me to wrap my brain around not having a child in elementary school.
I'll miss being able to walk him to school with Bocce.
Jacob suggested that when I drive him to middle school that I park kind of far away and we can walk to the school.  Poor sweet boy.  Somehow, he has the misguided notion that his Momma will have her sh*t together enough in the mornings to do this.

Olivia had her promotion ceremony from middle school and will start high school in the fall.  Most of these pictures are from my iPhone, so please excuse the crappy quality.
My beautiful niece Kelly graduated from high school and will be going to college in the fall.
At the beginning of June, when things were finally starting to settle down and I was ready to get back to tackling some projects around the house and blogging, I had a bit of a medical scare that I've had to address.

I'm scheduled for surgery at the end of this month and then will be on medical leave for awhile.  Sorry to be so evasive, but I'm still not sure just exactly how much I actually want to put out there.  I feel fine and I'm positive that everything's going to work out after the surgery is done.  I don't look forward to being laid up because I don't like to sit still for long.  But, there's always Netflix and Burn Notice.
So, I haven't been too focused on doing a lot of projects around the house because of this medical issue.  Instead, I've just been trying to stop and smell the roses.  Sorry, for the overused cliche.  I actually just wanted an excuse to throw in a picture of our rose garden from this past May.  We had some actual rain this spring and our rose garden looked the best I've ever seen it.

I've been trying to do fun things with my kids, family and friends this summer.  Recently, my kids and I went on a tram ride.  New Mexico has the worlds longest tram and I've lived here since I was 10 and have never ridden it.  I figured that since I recently turned 25, it was high time I rode the tram.  Ok, I lied, I'm not 25.  I'm 26.  Yes, another lie.
They tolerate me.  Barely.
As you can see, my kids were overjoyed when I wanted to take a picture of them on the tram ride up.

And, contrary to what some of you might think, we do actually have green grass in New Mexico.  You just have to really search for it.
The mountains were really beautiful and once my kids had a little less oxygen going to the their brains up at the top which is something like 10,000 feet, they were much more cooperative with me taking their picture.

I am working on a post of the laundry room.  It's a really hard room to photograph,  all 36 square feet of it, with no windows or natural light.  I'm hoping to have the post done soon so I can share it with you.

I am working on a few projects now.  In fact, I'm waiting for the spray paint to dry on one of them while I write this up.  I'm trying to get a few projects done before my surgery, so I'll hopefully have something finished to blog about while I'm laid up.  If you don't hear from me though, it's probably because I've been distracted by other things.
Thanks for dropping by and I'd love to hear what you've been up to this summer.


Bringing The Outdoors In

Spring is here in full force.  Perennials are coming up in our yard and trees are flowering.  On the days when we aren't having hurricane force winds, it's quite beautiful.
I haven't had time for any projects around the house lately.  This is usually a super busy time of year for me at my job, and there are always a lot of events towards the end of the school year for us to attend.  This year will be especially busy since this is Jacob's last year of elementary school and Olivia's last year of middle school.  Sob.
One thing I have been doing though, is making sure to pick some of the beautiful blooms off of some of the trees and shrubs in our neighborhood.  I shamelessly pluck branches off of trees growing in medians or parks, when I'm out walking.  Yes.  I am that crazy lady.
It's so worth it though, to have them in the house.  Makes me smile every time I see them when I walk into a room.
I even put some in my bathroom (to try to distract myself from the not-so-pretty laminate counter tops).  I dream of a herringbone Carrera marble backsplash and white quartz counter tops in here.  Until then, these pretty white delicate blossoms will have to do.
In my bedroom, I cut some branches off of my sister Margaret's forsythia bush.
I love the pop of yellow against the blue gray Behr Light French Gray painted walls.  They're like sunshine in a vase. :)
I used to have some coral tulips growing in my yard.  But, I think a certain furry, four legged, family member may be responsible for trampling them down?  Certainly, it couldn't be Bocce?  Not with that innocent face. ;)
Until I can plant some more this fall, I've been taking advantage of the lovely tulips at Trader Joe's.  I got these for the living room.
I love how they pick up the coral in the couch pillows.

Is anyone else out there as crazy about fresh flowers as I am?

Have a wonderful day!



At the beginning of the year, I set some goals for myself. One of them was that I was going to post one to two times a week.  Up until recently, I've done pretty well with this.  It's not always easy for me to find the time to do projects, photograph them, edit the photos and then blog about them.  But, it's a creative process that I enjoy so I've tried to make it a priority.

Making my home projects and blogging a priority has come at a cost though because it cuts into other things in my life that are also important.  One of those things has been spending time with the people that I love.  My kids. My family.  My friends.

My ex-husband and I split the weekend with our kids so they spend half of it with him and half of it with me.  That means that one day of my weekend is dedicated to grocery shopping, bill paying, house cleaning, errand running and squeezing in a blog project.  Rather impossible.  So a lot of time, these chores or house projects creep into the day I'm supposed to be spending time with my kids.

So, I have to ask myself, when my kids are grown and gone, am I going to look back and wish that I had done more home projects and blogged more?  Or, will I look back and wish that I had been more fully present and savored every moment with them?  Will it matter so much that I made the time to paint my kitchen cabinets white, or will I wish that I had played Monopoly with my kids?  Or taken them hiking, or to the park to play with Bocce, or up to the Georgia O'Keefe Museum in Santa Fe?

I do want to paint my kitchen cabinets white and there are a whole lot of other things that I'd like to do in my house.  But, I don't want those things to be more important than the people in my life.  My kids.  My family.  My friends.  And, I feel like since I started my blog, my home projects have taken priority over people.

Two people that I know passed away recently.  One was the mother of one of my clients.  A lovely woman who was a strong advocate for her disabled son.  She contacted me to let me know that she was recently diagnosed with terminal cancer.  I spoke with her on a Friday about what her wishes were for her son.  It was one of the most difficult conversations that I've ever had because I knew that essentially, I was telling her "goodbye."  In our conversation, she expressed regret about having lived in another city than her son and not having been able to be more involved with him because of it.  I reassured her that she had been a good Mom to him, that she was more involved than many parents I work with, and that she had been a good advocate for him.  She thanked me for telling her this.  She passed away the next Monday. I was sorry that she had this sense of regret at the end of her life.  It is something that I don't want to have because I have always tried to put my kids first.

Last week, my family had to say goodbye to my brother-in-law's Mother.  We all knew her as "Gram".  She was 92 and had been sick for some time and was in a rehab facility.  She had not been able to come to family get togethers for some time and she had been missed already.  Gram was a tiny woman, probably all of four feet ten inches tall and 80 pounds soaking wet.  She was so tiny that she was able to wear a pair of children's sandals.  You know, the kind that have lights in the soles that light up when you walk?  She was as feisty as she was sweet and she lit up a room with her smile.  She was kind and considerate and always remembered my children's birthdays with a card or a little gift.  Gram used to read The Night Before Christmas for all the kids in our family while each of them passed around a white elephant gift whenever she read the word "and".

While Gram was in the rehab facility, I kept telling Olivia and Jacob that we needed to go and visit her.  She loved kids.  She also loved our dog, Bocce.  I wanted to take Bocce with us to see her and thought he would cheer her up.  Then, I would get busy with work, life, chores, my projects, my blog, whatever.

We never did go and visit her, which I deeply regret because I would have liked to have seen her one last time, even if she didn't remember us.  I also regret not setting a better example for my kids.  An example of putting people before things.  People before busyness.
via Pinterest
I've struggled with whether I should continue blogging or quit altogether because of the amount of time it takes.  What I've finally decided is to say, "screw it" to my original goal of trying to post once or twice a week.  Instead, I'm going to post when I can.  I'll post after we've gone to the park, after we've played a board game, after we've gone to spend some time just hanging out with my Mom, after I've gone out to lunch with a friend.

I know that posting irregularly isn't supposed to be good for my SEO (search engine optimization) or blog stats, yada, yada, yada.  But, it's the best I can do at this time in my life, without giving it up completely, without compromising the time I have with the people I love.  The kitchen cabinets will be there.  They'll get painted eventually.  The projects will get done eventually.  I'll post about them eventually.

The people I want to appreciate right now.
via Pinterest
So, I appreciate your understanding.  I appreciate those of you who are following along and hope that you will continue to do so.