January 22, 2015

3: upside down

This little girl has turned our world upside down.  In the best possible way.

January 20, 2015

Making A Home: The Back Story

Sneak peek of our stairwell "before"
So I don't have any plans of morphing this space into a blog all about our house, but one of the big things David and I will be tackling in 2015 is the dozens of home improvement projects I've been scheming (everything from organizing the kitchen cabinets and freezers, to completely transforming our nightmarish stairwell, and everything in between - there's literally not a single room I don't want to do something to!).  I've been pinning like crazy, talking about all the ideas I have every chance I get to anyone who will listen, and I'm really excited to start putting some things into motion.

A friend of mine asked me a few weeks back why I was suddenly so excited about home improvement projects, since we've lived in this house for almost two years now, so I thought I would take a minute to explain the back story.

When David and I first moved in together, we rented a small but affordable two bedroom house to get ourselves started.  It was great to get us going, but it was a bit crowded.  A few months later, my sister decided to move out of the four bedroom house she was living in (that my mom and step-dad own) and we had the opportunity to essentially take over the (very low) mortgage payment.  Basically, we'd be paying less money for twice as much house - an offer we couldn't refuse.

We had originally planned to stay in the house for 2-3 years max.  I would finish my college degree, we would hopefully get pregnant pretty quickly, and then I would be off to work, starting my career when the baby was a year or so old.  Then we'd have a second income and we could afford to buy (or build) a nicer house.  When we moved in, I didn't want to invest a lot of time or money into the house, knowing we would be leaving relatively quickly, so the design plan was just to spruce things up a bit.  We did a little painting and such, but my mentality was basically just to "get by" since we wouldn't be here long.

It's a good thing we always take a flexible approach to life plans because we tossed that entire idea right out the window!  Once our little girl was born, the dream of having another baby a reality, we began to reanalyze our plan.  We both decided that we would prefer to make a few sacrifices (namely, not moving into another house) so I could stay home and raise our baby myself (I know the stay-at-home mom life is not for everyone, but seriously, there is no job in the world that could offer me a salary big enough to give this up - especially as this is our last baby!).  We are now planning to stay put for another 4+ years or so, which gives me the chance to stay at home with Olivia until she starts preschool (around 4.5-years-old), while also allowing me to finish up my Master's degree (so I don't have to wrestle with work, family, and school later on).

So with that back story in mind, the reason I've now decided that I want to focus on the homemaker aspect of my current "job" is because we are now invested and committed to this house for several more years.  I'm not happy with just "getting by" since I know we're now going to be here for the long(ish) term, and I want to put a bit more effort into really make this place ours.  Don't get me wrong, we aren't going to be knocking down any walls, refinishing the floors, or doing any major renovations - we're not that invested - but the (relatively) small projects we are taking on are sure to make a big impact nonetheless.  Hanging a gallery wall might not seem like a big deal, but just adding a personalized touch like that can make a space feel so much more cozy.

So again, I don't want this to become a home improvement blog, but I do want to share the many projects we'll be working on throughout the year.  (As an aside, I super hope the projects I share are never titled "Home Improvement: What Not To Do" or "Home Improvement Fail" or the like!)  My hope is to complete one project per month (though some of them are much more involved than others, so that is an extremely flexible goal), and I hope you will enjoy this journey as much as we plan to!

January 19, 2015

Macro Eyelashes

Why do the boys always have the prettiest lashes?

January 16, 2015

Noah, In Winter

I couldn't resist throwing in that last shot.  I said, "Don't smile; give me a serious look this time," and that's what he did.  HA!

January 15, 2015

2: time

Any time is a good time for coffee!

I love the noisy feel of this photo (something I was actually trying for, for once) because it's a great representation of the dust, dirt, and grit I've been wallowing in these past few days.  Look closely at these tired hands and you will see paint primer spackles, sandpaper dust, and perhaps a bit of joint compound.  That's right, I've given up my day job to become a carpenter.  Well, perhaps not quite so dramatic, but I have fully embraced the role of homemaker, and a large portion of my time recently has been dedicated to making a home for this family.  We're in the midst of an absolutely shocking (shocking, I tell you!) stairwell makeover, and I'm also in the planning stages of transforming several other rooms.  I never imagined I'd be the type to attempt things like drywall repair, and yet, I find myself not only doing it, but happily doing it with pride and joy.  I guess time changes everything.