Dropping Our Drawers

This weekend is already off to a fabulous start for us and we can't wait to check back with you next week.  Before the long weekend fun gets out of hand, I thought I'd squeeze in a quickie blog post.

As THRILLED as we are to finally have a dishwasher (below) again, there is one problem.  Okay, there are many problems but ssshhhhh... Let me just focus on one at a time!  The only place it could fit was to the left of the sink... which means that we no longer have a single kitchen drawer! 

Think about it for a minute.  Think of ALL the Tupperware and tin foil and cutlery and all the other stuff that fits in your kitchen drawers.  Now, imagine not having any of that space!  Things get REAL pretty fast, don't they?

As you know, the kitchen is not in our budget until after we renovate the main bathroom.  For now, we've been storing some of out kitchen things in the family room but not having cutlery handy is getting pretty annoying.

I was visiting my mom this evening and we stopped in at a nearby thrift shop just to see if there was anything interesting.  I found a set of pretty white jars with copper lids that caught my eye, since I'm a sucker for copper.  The set was only $7.50 and, while it was initially in rough shape, it's actually not bad now that I've cleaned and polished it.

The best part is that they'll still look great when we finally renovate our kitchen because I'd love to display some of the copper cookware my parents gave me once our kitchen is finished. 

Here it is above the cupboards in the condo but I'm hoping to think of a better display idea for the new/old house:

We're already putting our jars to good use with cutlery in the largest, snacks in the second largest and instant coffee and tea bags in the smallest jars. 

I'm imagining some open shelving in our kitchen once we renovate.  How great would these look sitting on a rustic shelf made from reclaimed wood?!

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Friday Reading: Part 4

What are you up to this weekend?  I'm still not sure of our plans (we are often forced to plan at the last minute due to work) but I know many people who are heading into the wilderness for the serenity of camping or a cottage.  The picture (above) was taken on one of our favourite camping trips last summer.  Sorry for the iPhone quality. :S

For those who are staying in town, after the important step towards equality that was taken by our neighbours in the US, this will probably be a landmark year to join in some Pride Week festivities.

Wishing you all a fantastic long weekend!  Wish Barkley luck... he HATES the fireworks! :(

Enjoy these interesting sites from around the web:

I love this idea!  Let's hope it catches on in Toronto!

This eco-friendly Coca Cola bottle looks refreshing!  Corey argued that it's not eco-friendly because of all the clean water used to make the bottles.  I argued that, in Canada, we use clean water to flush our toilets... which brought us back to the Sink Positive debate.

This essay on how a daughter learns whether to love or hate her body by listening to her mother almost brought me to tears.  This is true for all of us to some degree.  I remember my mother pretending not to be afraid of spiders so she wouldn't pass on her fear to me... It was a good try.

The time we have left... represented by jellybeans, was a little sad, but quite interesting.

Common financial mistakes you make in your twenties.  This is a great article to read.  How many did you make?

10 old-school things that make summer SUMMER!

Watch as this teacher shows her third graders what discrimination really means.  At first, I thought this was horrible, but I was amazed by how much these children comprehended and that they were able to make the connection between different kinds of discrimination.

What would it look like to be inside a box filled with mirrors?  Random but very cool.

This product really looks like magic in a can!  <= Note from Corey: I watched this video and became obsessed!!! Taylor had to tell me to stop watching since I just kept restarting it. I NEED THIS!!!

Way to go, Wendy Davis.  If you haven't heard of her, watch this video of her speaking for 13 hours to filibuster an anti-abortion bill in Texas.

Read these books before the movies come out and the endings are spoiled.  I always hate reading a book after I see the film because, instead of using my imagination, all I can picture are the actors.

And finally, this book looks interesting: Confessions of a Sociopath.  I'm looking for some summer books because nothing makes me feel more summer-y than reading a good book outdoors!


Two Month House Tour

We just celebrated two months in our new/old house and we are excited about all the work we have done!  As with most renovations, things tend to get worse before they get better...

Sometimes, I love reading about people's renovations because the end result is just so spectacular... but sometimes, the meanie in me likes to see the "during" pictures because they're so delightfully awful.  They always make my own home feel so clean and tidy.

So, get ready to laugh your evil super-villain laugh (Mwahahahahah) as you take a look at what it's like to live in a house that is undergoing renovations...  Seriously, this will make you feel better for not folding that pile of laundry that's been calling your name.

And speaking of laundry... it's time to air ours... So leave your dishes in the sink - nay, throw them on the floor!  ... and join us for an evening at our house:  Note: You may want to use the washroom at your place first, since ours is pretty scary.  Just sayin'...

For a quick look at what the house looked like on Day 1, read this post.

Let's start with the front entrance.  As you can see, we've done a bit of work here.  We still need to paint, add baseboards below the baseboards to fill in the gaps, and about a million other things.  I think I'll feel better when Corey replaces the light with something a little brighter.

Oh wait, you're wondering why I'm not showing the porch?  It's because it's full of junk and we're ready for another trip to the dump.  Frankly, it's embarrassing but in the interest of full disclosure, here it is:

See... I wasn't kidding!  Okay, let's look at the living room again.  This is obviously a room we've been focusing on but it still needs some paint and final touches:

And through the living room, is our dining room.  The exposed ducts (not shown) and giant hole in the wall make it a semi-priority.  Watch your step...

And here's the dining room from another angle:

Okay, this is getting easier for me to share.  It actually feels kind of good to show off these unstaged photos of our new/old house.  Let's move on to the kitchen:

Definitely not my favourite room.  We need more storage badly!  Our cutlery is actually being stored in the family room because, now that we have a dishwasher, we don't have a single kitchen drawer! 

Here's the opposite view:

I know it doesn't look so bad... but let's look up for a second:

Yup, I thought so!  Okay, Barkley obviously followed me into the kitchen so I'm going to let him be in one photo before I feed him and continue:

There you go, Barkley.  Are you happy?

Past the kitchen is the family room:

Yup, I wasn't kidding about the shower.  That is actually the shower we're currently using.  Oh, and I feel the need to share the fact that those beer boxes on the bookshelf are actually filled with books.  We're not as fun as you think.  Also, I'm not even going to discuss the pink walls.

Now, let's take a look outside.  It hasn't changed too much since I last wrote about it:

Okay, let's check out the basement...

Yup, it's still a little crazy and will remain that way until we are able to finish rooms and actually unpack. 

At least we have a laundry room... Yay!

... But, if you zoom out, you can see that the room needs work...

There IS a bathroom in the basement... Yay!

But it needs quite a bit of work and I'm still a little concerned about that window which opens to the path between our house and our neighbour's house.... "Oh, hey there!  Me?  Oh, I'm just taking a shower... Whatcha doin'?  Cutting your grass?  ... Cool..."  Awkward!

Okay, let's get out of the basement.  It needs so much work that it's making me sad.  Moving upstairs:

The East bedroom has become a craft/project room for now:

This is our "good" bathroom.  Yeah... I don't want to talk about it...  Note: The tub is only "scary" because I'm afraid of it falling on me while I'm using the toilet.  This picture doesn't show the depth well but it is actually very close to the toilet.

This is our hallway.  The runner is for Barkley.

Here's our smallest bedroom, which serves as a temporary office for me.  Eventually, I'd like to move my office to the basement.

And here's the master bedroom.  We're not big bed-makers (sorry mom) and I had a client meeting postponed so I got to spend the whole evening curled up in bed reading and writing a bunch of blog posts!  Aside from the living room, the master bedroom may be the first room we decide to finish.  I have some big ideas...

So that's it until next time.  I'm hoping that the next time we do this, things will be starting to look more finished.  :)

Feel better about those dirty dishes in your own sink now?
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We Survived Ikea Midnight Madness!

... And all we got was this lousy t-shirt... Just kidding... Although it would be awesome if they made t-shirts with the "Midnight Madness" logo and some tears in the sleeves and scratches from all the people shoving you in the store.

Remember this post where I hypothesize that people probably break up in Ikea?  Well, imagine how surprised I was to find us there at 8:00 on a Friday night surrounded by CROWDS of zombies frenzied shoppers. 

Luckily, we escaped nearly as happy as the couple in the above photo but I was still shocked at the phenomenon that is Midnight Madness.  Let me tell you about it:

They offer a very few items on sale (and the sales are GOOD) but the rest of the stock is regular price.  They keep their doors open until midnight and basically watch the people scurry around like rats in a maze.  You see, it's impossible to walk through Ikea and not buy something.... Impossible!  It's almost as if the you feel like you deserve some sort of consolation prize for finding your way out of the store!  Honestly, the marketing genius who came up with the concept of "Midnight Madness" deserves a raise: shopping late at night is like shopping drunk.  Most of the people at the checkout were swaying on their sore feet and, like last call at the bar, they were pretty much ready to take anything home!

Corey and I had never heard about Midnight Madness, but my mom called me on her way home from work to give me a heads up.  There are a couple of big ticket items that I casually have my eyes open for and one of them happened to be discontinued and offered at more than 50% off.  So, with the promise of $2 plates of meatballs, I convinced Corey to join me at Ikea on a Friday night.

The masses were filing into the upper-level parking lot when we arrived (We didn't even know there was an upper-level lot) and we were a little surprised to discover that we weren't the only people who had heard about the sale... Silly, in hindsight but we hadn't given it much thought.  Anyway, we decided quickly that there would be no dilly-dallying in the kitchen section (this is our weakness) since we were in competition.  We had our eyes on the prize!

So we zoomed through Ikea at record speed.  I may have stopped once to admire a bathroom sink cabinet but a firm "Focus, Taylor!" from Corey kept me on track.  When we arrived at the product we wanted, there were already several other people buzzing around, but some teamwork assured that we found a sales associate and were served quickly... Without throwing a single elbow!

And what did we buy?  Well, remember our major lack of closet space and subsequent ClosetMaid system installation?  Here are a couple of pictures to refresh your memory:


Well, you know what's an awesome feature to add to a closet?  Doors!  We had been thinking about sliding doors for a while and I know Ikea makes doors in a large enough size (we have high ceilings) but they were nearly $800 before tax.   Enter "Midnight Madness" and we were able to get the discontinued Pax Tonnes doors for $300!  This is how we felt standing in line:

So, what exactly did we buy?  Here's a picture of the HUGE doors (below) ... And by the way, you should be proud of me because I haven't made one bad pun about how much they weigh even though the product name is Pax Tonnes.
The branches weren't exactly our style but it wasn't worth the price to buy another set just so we could have 6 plain white panels.  I think we can make it work in the room though, so we're not going to worry about it for now.  We had assumed we would make our own sliding closet doors but Corey estimates that we would have paid almost as much in materials... and spend hours more in labour so we think we made the right choice!
I'll post some pictures when we finally get around to installing these but it's looking like the first two rooms we seem to be focusing on are the living room and the master bedroom so look for some updates soon.
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