Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Spoiler Alert!!!!


Harry Potter is a wizard.

Whew. I've been holding that in for awhile. Hope I didn't ruin it for you (I did warn you after all).
You know you've watched too much Harry Potter when you wake up and realize you've learned a new curse word without even realizing it (cover your ears eyes mom): Merlin's beard!

I've been saying that quietly to myself ever since I woke up this morning. I have no idea why. I can only attribute it to the hours and hours I've spent engrossed in either Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings (though the actual phrase is quoted from HP).

I think they approve. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Stairs reveal!

Remember when my stairs looked like this?
Well, now they look like this:
I'm happy it's (sort of) done but there are still problems that need to be addressed. For example: I haven't even done the stretch from the landing to the top of the stairs (about 4-5 stairs) because you can't see them when you walk in the door (so on the back burner they shall go), and I have a multitude of paint/stain touch ups that must be completed for it to look less sloppy, as well as the fact that I still need to protect my stain with a few coats of poly.

For now, I'm taking a break. Overall I'm pleased with the how they turned out though they certainly are not perfect. No, much like everything else in my house, it's a thrown-together dirty job. But it was definitely inexpensive (my number 1 criteria for this project).

Here's the breakdown (all prices are rounded to approx as I remember them):

1) Sand paper:                  12.00-15.00            (sooo much sandpaper needed!)
2) 1/4 round:                      5.00                       (I think I had 6-8 pieces of 8ft 1/4 round)
3) shims:                            2.00    
3) stain:                              8.00                        (stain color is Jacobean)
4) paint:                            12.00                       (this is where I went really cheap and bought basic builder's white paint-I could have spent 25-30.00 for a better quality paint but, you know, cheap is how I roll so....)
5) blood, sweat, tears     +2,532,264.00            (okay, there's no monetary equivalent to this)

(excl. my emotional/physical well-being)
                                       =$42.00  (approximate)

Not a bad amount for such a labor intensive transformation.

I tell you this was a test of my wills (and it isn't even over yet! ::::whiiiiiiinnnne::::)
But I had to show you the almost, pretty much, close as I'll get for awhile, oh hell-I'm done look of my stairs.

It's pretty accurate to the look I wanted (my inspiration pics):

(all pics courtesy of pinterest)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Illusion vs. Reality

I'm in a dance class. It's a recreational adult jazz class (which I LOVE!) and the instructor rocks.  I know, you're like, "wow, that's awesome--are you any good?" And in response, I'm like, "Are you kidding me? LIKE A BOSS!"

Problem is is that reality rarely aligns with my delusions fantasies. So, when I'm dancing and I feel like this:

I'm pretty sure I really look like this:

Note the reaction of the person in the background:

Yeah. I illicit that reaction too.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Stairs...The Neverending Story

Does anyone remember that movie, The Neverending Story? Or are you not that old? (my age is definitely showing!) I really liked the movie but boy did that dragon ick me out. Anyone else with me? ::::crickets, crickets::::

I think I was freaked by the scales on the back. That texture...yeesh. No way was I riding on his back!

Anyhow. I know I'm way off my topic here.

The stairs. The neverending story.

When I last left you I was sanding them like a boss (mom, do not open this link-not safe for you! I mean it.) and trying to work out the dilemma with the gaps.

That's what they looked like after I sanded a whole hell of a lot. And by no means were they perfect (even barring the gap). There were these types of things I had to deal with:

But ya know, I just decided to go with it. The worst that could happen was to cover it with carpet again
(my mantra every time I got discouraged).

So I forged ahead and bought quarter round. If you don't know, quarter round is a type of trim and almost all houses have it. I'm sure you've all seen it:

It's the part that butts up against the wall and the floor. I figured it would work to cover my gaps. And it did wonderfully. This is also very cheap (.52/sq yard or something). I think it only cost me something like 5.00 to buy a bunch of it (yes I measured but left my measurements at home when I went to Home Depot so I guesstimated-I figured I could always go back for more). I brought them home in 8 ft lengths and decided to cut them with my miter box.
I already had one but these only cost about 15.00. And no, I did not miter. I cut straight lines. I figured I would cover any goofs with copious amounts of caulk. That's all a girl really needs people=====>> copious amounts of caulk.:::snicker:::

Anyhow. Sidetracked again.
So, I made my cuts (measure twice-cut once!) For this I needed 3 separate sizes. 1 for the height, 1 for the width and 1 for the depth of the stairs. Then all I did was nail them down and used liquid nails.
Problem was I still had plenty of gaps to deal with.
You can see where I put the 3 separate pieces together:

 I was less worried about the gap above because caulk would help me there.
  But there was a gap on the overhang of the tread.
I went back to HD to find a solution. I found it in wood shims. Cutting those little guys was time consuming. But I prevailed.

Then, I caulked (like a boss).

After which, my stairs looked like this:

Okay, not exactly like that. Apparently I took these pics before caulking. And not one after. Oh wells. Use your imagination please. Already it looks a hundred times better than before. No gaps, sanded down. Even with all the imperfections I know it's coming together!

One more hurdle to go-staining and painting!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Halloween dress up!

So I finally convinced my luhv-ah to dress up for Halloween. And as an actual "couple" not some gore-rific Halloween horror. How did I do it? I have no friggin' idea. I just mentioned how I'd like to dress like.... and he could dress like.... (see if you can figure out our costumes below-shouldn't be too difficult). And he said, "okay". I was stunned. My luhv-ah isn't the most accommodating when it comes to playing dress up (unless it's something really "manly" like Conan the Barbarian). Not that I'm complaining- look how cute he is in his hat!

I loved it! We only went around the neighborhood but it was great (of course it was great- I got to tell people that I am practically perfect in every way!). Funny though how none of the kids really knew who we were. I mean, some of them said, "Hey, she's that lady from that movie!" and one kid said to his friend {about my husband}, "I think he's a janitor!" LOL. So definitely a different era all together.

And while she's not featured, my daughter was a vampire. And no she wasn't this kind of vampire:

 She was a traditional one. Cape and all. And we didn't get any pictures of her because this was the year she was all, "Ummmm...I want to go trick or treating alone with my friends!" Le sigh. Tweenies.