Well, it’s been awhile. My last Friday Garden Update was on February 22nd here. And that was more like a snow update! When I go back through my media folder I see so many bright photos from last year that I’m filled with hope of another colorful summer!
Howard cleared the garden with the exception of last year’s kale that held strong through the winter! Amazing. The aphids that haunted us last year are gone so I’m looking forward to trying some of our garden kale for the first time.
Our forsythia is in full bloom as of this week too. I made an effort to cut back this bush several times last year in hopes that the flowers would be more concentrated than they were last year (here). And it worked!
In fact, this garden is update is almost the same as the one from last April 6th. Because of the long winter things are just blooming a little later.
And this spring I am making a promise to myself that I will learn how to use my camera. It was over a year ago that I got my new Nikon here. And I admit that I still shoot in auto mode most of the time!
What’s blooming in your yard?
Have a great weekend everyone!
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged forsythia, garden, kale, spring | Leave a Comment »
I wish I could say that the title “Finally!” refers to the bathroom project but we have a few things that need to be wrapped up first. Like getting the back splash replaced (more here). But, we’ll get there eventually.
Finally! refers to replacing the upstairs bathroom ceiling fan which has been on my to-do list since we moved in. The fan worked fine but it was venting into the attic space and that meant that during the summer the venting was underwhelming and probably not ideal if we wanted to avoid growing mold. The fan isn’t something I could have done myself. It was a project that Howard took on after I insisted I wanted a new ceiling fan for my Birthday. And of course, he still spoiled me with presents so really I owe him for this. It was a messy project in every upstairs room.
The most challenging part of this project, and the reason we put it off so long, is that there is barely any attic space.
The house had central air conditioning installed and the ducts leave room for barely a belly crawl in the space. And the space above the bathroom fan isn’t even deep enough to put your head.
The project was so frustrating that I was told to put the camera down. So the during was not captured but the end result sure was!
And here is what the outside now looks like with a properly installed vent. Howard cut a hole in the side of the house instead of going through the roof. As we say in Boston, real smaht.
On another note, Howard also tried to install a ceiling light in the bedroom since he’d be up in the attic. But there was no way he could get over the bedroom. We’ll have to cut a hole in the bedroom wall another day to finish that project.
And the new lamps? Thanks for noticing! They were another Birthday present to myself from Pottery Barn. I’ve been hunting for some “grown-up” lamps for a long time. I thought they would be more of a pale sea green but they match the rug. Yes, I’m a very lucky girl.
I suppose it’s time for some updated house photos without a drop-cloth on the bed. Maybe next weekend. Have a great week everyone!
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged attic, bathroom, ceiling fan, DIY | Leave a Comment »
With every chapter of the bathroom project, we have some good news, and some not-so-good news. In light of everything that has happened in Boston this week, our problems are nothing. Our hearts go out to everyone impacted in this tragedy. We are hoping Boston can regain some normalcy soon.
Now for the good news. The third KraftMaid cabinet was acceptable and we were able to install it without any problems last weekend. We’ve been playing with ideas on how to cap the top of it at the ceiling. More on that another day.
The “toilet nook” is much wider than it used to be even though we didn’t relocate the toilet.
This old photo reminds me just how odd the previous “nook” was because of the closet that was there before. You can see more of the old bathroom here.
We installed our second Delta faucet which we absolutely adored at first.
And then we realized that the back splash wouldn’t fit behind the faucet fixture.
We went through the blame game that the Cambria sink must be wrong. How could such little space be left for the back splash? Didn’t they know we needed a faucet?
Then we decided it was easier to buy another faucet. A third Delta faucet. What the heck, we had ordered three tall cabinets already.
I’ll admit I don’t love it. But it works and it fits and we are ready for this project to be over. And now that I see the photos, it is growing on me. My major complaint is the little screw holes that are visible on the side of the faucet handles. You probably wouldn’t have even noticed if I didn’t point it out, right? I know we all agree that I am getting way to picky.
And even though we got a new sink faucet, the back splash still had to go back this morning. It was cut with the bottom edge thicker than the rest of the back splash. This meant that there would be a big gap between the wall and the back splash at the finished top part. Something isn’t right. I suspect they meant for the thicker part to be at the top so it would rest flush against the wall and the slimmer part would allow for epoxy.
Let’s hope Cambria can trim off the extra thickness and get us our back splash back asap! I am hoping the curse of the three’s doesn’t get us again!
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged bathroom reno, cambria, delta, kraftmaid | 1 Comment »
We are about approximately one weekend (maybe two) away from bathroom completion! We finally chose a paint color and trim color after much back and forth.
The winner was Benjamin Moore’s “Maritime White.” And the trim is “Cotton Balls.” Is anyone surprised by our nautical choice in paint colors?
The shower door was installed and is looking much more modern and taller.
Do you remember my old photo in front of the brass shower door? It’s from last April. A whole year ago!
The new door is a huge improvement – although the door looks a little brassy in the photo. I assure you it’s brushed nickel. And the ceiling fan is awesome in its quietness.
We are thrilled that our third Kraft Maid vanity cabinet finally arrived.
And this time the order is correct. We are now rethinking our rave reviews of Kraft Maid. What a debacle. Anyways, the new cabinet is ready to be installed.
Just as soon as the counters arrive.
We don’t always keep saw horses in the living room. The counters are coming today. Hooray!
We are excited to be (almost) wrapping up this project. We still need to install some hardware for towels, swap out the bathmat, and fix the window trim. And I have an idea to make a frame for the mirror just to prolong the project ending for another year.
Oh, and did anyone get the reference to a U2 song in the title post? I know at least one of my devoted followers did!
What projects have you been tackling? And which projects just don’t seem to end?
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged bathroom reno, benjamin moore, cotton balls, kraft maid, maritime white, shower door | Leave a Comment »
Picking out the hardware for the bathroom turned out to be one of our easier decisions. After we got past the all knobs? all pulls? or knobs and pulls? decision. Knobs and pulls won.
Installing the hardware was easy using a template. But it’s always better to measure twice.
Even if it’s a little awkward in the middle of the living room.
At first we ordered from Merillat hardware because we’ve ordered from them before. When our order shipped for $2.50 and the box shipping label said $18 we knew these folks were not trying to rip us off.
I originally chose a satin aluminum finish because, I’ll bashfully admit, the pull was called “Boat Cleat.” I’m a sucker for anything nautical.
But, satin aluminum is a really bright silver and the pulls were too long. So that hardware will be going back.
So we shopped around Lowe’s and Home Depot deciding that we didn’t need to spend a lot on hardware as long as it was good quality. You can easily spend thousands on hardware alone if you have the desire. Or the money.
We also decided on a faucet. We didn’t get that right the first time either (see the first one here). It should arrive this week. But, we need the new counters installed before we’ll show off the new faucet fixture.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged hardware, knobs, merillat, pulls, satin nickel | Leave a Comment »
We thought we had the paint color right the first time. Nah, that would be too easy. The tan we picked was making the canvas cabinets look a little too yellow. When I look at this photo everything looks ridiculously monochrome.
With no shortage of paint color choices, we are again stuck in decision paralysis. Howard has noted that we are too close to our work and striving for perfection. What’s wrong with that?
We have tested out shades of tan, more tan, off-white, green, and blue. We only looked at blue because it was in the basement. I don’t even remember what we had bought Olympic’s April Showers for. I read that blue tones help off-white cabinets look less yellow. But, we are not going with blue. And we have decided that we want Benjamin Moore paint so that at least narrows down the samples to elminate the Olympic and Behr samples.
What are your thoughts on paint color?
We are still waiting for the counters and shower door to be installed. I am hoping they will be done this week. And now we are also waiting for our third Kraft Maid cabinet for corner. What happened?
Well, the first one was missing the door (here) and the exposed edge was unfinished or damaged. So, we ordered a second cabinet and then waited a few more weeks. We boxed up the original cabinet, hauled it back to Home Depot, and returned home with a replacement cabinet. When we opened up the box, Howard realized it was not all plywood construction which we paid for. We don’t want mdf in the bathroom. I am glad he noticed before we cut open the box. We were convinced it would be right this time.
Kraft Maid has not offered any discount for the inconvenience to date. And we would have kept the first one for a different open shelving look but they refused to reduce the price. We are hoping they will help make it right with the third replacement cabinet. The first time we bought Kraft Maid (for our kitchen) we were thrilled with the quality and service. This time our experience has not been as good.
How was your weekend? Did you tackle any fun home improvement projects?
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged benjamin moore, kraft maid, olympic | 2 Comments »
Picking out the counter top for the bathroom was nothing short of exhausting. Looking back, our decision making wasn’t near as bad as the floor tile decision but it still took a few weekends to figure it out. We knew we wanted a quartz counter for its durability and particle regularity. At first we gravitated towards Silestone because it is everywhere and the samples were easily obtainable.
But, then we learned that they have minimums and primarily supply kitchen counters. And we noticed that our choice of Ivory Coast varied everywhere we went. By a lot. We also considered granite because everyone said it would be cheaper for a bathroom than quartz since remnants are easier to find. There were two problems with granite. The first was that we didn’t see any in the showrooms that we liked in particular. We were looking for a counter with a very regular and uniform color. The second problem was that there are no granite supply stores open on the weekend near us and this project is mainly a weekend project.
So, this past weekend, we decided to stop at a local kitchen and bath showroom that I’ve noticed on the way to Home Depot. I like local guys. This showroom had a lot of quartz and they had a sizable amount of Cambria on display. Cambria was one of the samples I had originally picked out here. We had dismissed it because it was an unfamiliar name to us. But, after learning more about their quartz counters, made here in the United States, we decided that this was the product for us and hurried home with a few more samples.
There was a unique tan color with blue accents that I really liked but it was a little dark. It looked like a less safe choice for us which was exciting. But my fear of hating it in a few years kicked in.
We decided to go with the Cambria Coswell Cream color which reminds me of a sandbar at the beach. The two samples we had were pretty close and didn’t vary as much as the Silestone samples which is reassuring.
I am happy to announce that our order for the custom vanity tops has been placed. It was a hard decision and just when we thought we were done having picked the material we had to decide on the thickness, the edge finish, how high the back splash should be, and how much overhang we should have. So, what did we pick?
- Cambria Quartz
- Color: Coswell Cream
- Thickness: 1 1/4 inches (vs. 3/4 inch)
- Edge: double pencil edge
- Backsplash: 4 inches
- Overhang: 1 1/4 inches
Being the hoarder that I am, I couldn’t give up the pretty Silestone samples so easily.
I added a few rubber feet to the bottom of them.
And now we have two more pretty coasters. Just what we didn’t need!
The counters will take a few weeks and then we should be one giant step closer to having the bathroom finished!
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged bathroom renovation, cambria, coswell cream, granite, quartz, silestone | Leave a Comment »