"Lo, Children Are An Heritage of the LORD: and the Fruit of the Womb is His Reward" - Psalm 127:3

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Painting is Done! Looks Like a Brand New Place

For those of you waiting for the big reveal, I apologize for the delay.  I had to wait until nap-time to get a minute to blog :)  I cannot believe the difference a little paint makes!  I'll give you a tour ...

Let's start with a few horrendous "before" pictures.  Keep in mind that I had forgotten to take any until we were already in the process of tearing everything down and getting ready for the painters so it's pretty cluttered -  

 The kitchen.

Looking into the living room from the kitchen (after we had already torn down everything in ther and moved the furniture to the middle of the room).

 The front entry.

The over-cluttered dining room with a homemade bulletin board we decided to remove.

The main wall of our living room - which is straight ahead when you come in the front door.

The kids' bathroom.

Here's what it looks like now.  Feels like I've been on one of those makeover shows ;)

The front entry.  You'll notice as we go along that I still had a few things needing to be finished before the pictures were taken.  And I still have a few projects I want to do.  We need to put up white wainscoting in the front entry, under the bulletin board and coat hooks.  We meant to have that done before the painters came, but didn't get to it.  We also want to paint the chest white and put new upholstery on it so it will blend in a little better ... something western.

Now, if you stand in the front door as if you just came in, this is what you would see looking first to your right, then proceeding counter clockwise.  I set up this area as a reading nook, and have our new stuffed animal zoo there.  That's another project.  I need to stain it.  I also want to create big letters that say READ.  I'm thinking of cutting them out of cardboard and covering them with pages from antique childrens' books from the recycling center or something.  Haven't quite pinned it down yet.  Or I might add a vinyl quote about reading on the wall above the chair, and attach those letters to the back of the toy sorter (the black part you can see behind the bookshelf).  My dad and I built that about 8 years ago.    It has held up beautifully.  It is full of dishtubs of different toys.  I'm considering covering the back of it in a vinyl that has western looking leather tooling marks on it (that I've been carrying around for 7 years) if I don't put the READ letters there.  I also want to make some of those huge tissue paper pom poms to hang high above this area.

 On the right is that same toy sorter.  I made a cover for it out of plywood and covered it with felt, thinking the kids would have a great time with a flannelgraph board.  Not so.  Instead they scatter the pieces and the babies try to eat them.  I don't get the pieces out much anymore.  And it's starting to look ratty.  So the next plan is to either paint it with magnetic primer and chalkboard paint, or to mount a piece of sheet metal in the center for magnets, and add all sorts of latches around it.  Haven't decided which to do yet, but I'm leaning away from doing the chalk in a carpeted room.

This little play area has the rug with the roads on it, and the discovery cove which you can just barely see on the left side of the picture has shelving on each end.  The cars are on the side next to the rocking horse, so they are hear the car rug.

I'd like to get some of those sun-catcher crystals that make rainbows on the walls to hang in that high window to make the place sparkly.

The discovery cove is directly in front of you from the front door, centered on the brown accent wall.  I eventually want to sew a bunch of different covers and tent door flaps for this with different themes - a canvas one for a covered wagon, a gingerbread house, an igloo, a starry night scene, camping theme, army camo, etc. I'm also debating cutting a panel or two of plywood to use for a backing and paint scenes on that for inside the cove to match those themes.  My nine year old son wants the gingerbread one to look like there is a big stone fireplace with stockings hung.  He wanted me to do that with fabric, but if I used plywood, I could attach hooks for stockings, and such.  I was thinking I would make them reversible so they could just be turned around for a different theme.  I'm also considering using cardboard for that.  Obviously a down the road project.  I would attach it to the cove with clamps.

When the paint cures pretty well, (maybe by this weekend) I'm going to attach a vinyl logo above the cove.  It has a cowboy swinging a lariat above a speeding horse and has my business name "Little Buckaroos Daycare" on it.  I also want to make a fabric bunting - or several of them - to swag along the top of that wall.  I definitely want to do one with western fabrics - bandanna fabrics and such - and then maybe seasonal ones (but that would mean I would have to climb a ladder to the top of the 10 foot ceiling each time I wanted to change it.  I'm trying to figure out a tool to use to hook those - kind of like they use in clothing stores to put the clothes up on those high hooks.  Still thinking about it...

 The next thing you would normally see is the dining room, but we'll come back to that.  My office area is in the nook just to the left of the entry (if you could see the entry, you'd see we've come full-circle.  This area still needs work too.  I used to have one of the shelving units with the file drawers in the dining room, and was using it for a different purpose, so I need to sort through all those files and replace them with my daycare files.  For now, those are in that end table (light colored wood on the end).  That will move once I get the filing switched over.  The green crate holds all my preschool idea books, which I haven't figured out where to store yet.  I'll get it all done in the next week or so.

We also usually have the flat screen tv mounted on that empty wall.  It would be okay with me if it didn't go back up ... ever.  We don't have television service anyway, but the guys (all of them) really like to watch videos - disney, and learning shows etc. so I'll probably lose that battle.

 The kitchen is so different with the color on the walls - looks amazing, and makes the cupboards really stand out.  I used to not like the light color of those cabinets, but now I think they're really pretty.  I would love a different countertop, but we're not even considering that on a place we don't own.  (I saw some forever ago that were made of recycled glass and had beautiful blue colors in it.  I would love something like that.  Well, that, or that black stone with the glitttery flecks in it - whatever that's called.)

 This is the dining room, as seen from the kitchen.  This too will change a bit.  We have to wait for the paint to cure before we can hang the top of the diaper changer back up on the wall.  And I want to find baskets of some sort that would fit the slots in the bottom section of the diaper changing table, and turn it so it's flat against the wall (or even add cabinet doors to the front of it.  It just looks so cluttered when you can see all the packages of diapers and extra clothes).  Then I will add a vinyl that says "A person's a person, no matter how small." (Dr. Seuss) in the space between the diaper changer and the overhead cabinet.  I considered getting one of those porthole fish-bowls, but the reviews all say they're so small that the fish can't move around in them, and that makes it pretty cruel for the fish. The kids would sure love something like that though - being able to watch a fish while being changed. :)

 This is another look at my dining room, where you can see the blue wall coming in.  This blue is on the wall in by the kitchen cabinets and around to the dining room.  It is a darker blue than the living room.  The cabinet in the corner is full of preschool craft supplies.  I would like to move it out of there, but I'm not sure to where.  The nap cots fit nicely in front of it.  I'd like to make a chalkboard for this wall - something not permanently attached.  Another project for another day... and I'm debating over whether to add a valance to that window.

The table is another project waiting to be done.  We need to sand it and paint it white, then let the nine year old get creative with sharpies.  We're almost finished with ski season, so maybe that can get done one of these coming weekends sometime soon.

 The bathroom is about my favorite thing, I think.  This is my favorite color.  It is called "resolute blue" by Sherwin Williams.  The painter gave it to us (he had a gallon left over from a previous project), but I wasn't able to see a paint card for it before-hand.  I looked at it online and took a leap of faith, and I'm so glad I did!

So that's the tour of all we had painted.  Now I want the rest of the house done!  Actually, you can add that to the "to-do projects".  I want to build three twin beds for the boys and paint them white, then paint their room royal blue, add some white or orange curtains, and make them each a different blue, orange and white quilt - for a classy Denver Bronco's room.  So that ought to keep me busy for awhile, I think.

So, do you like it?

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