Category Archives: House

I Won Something!

As part of the shop hop I did a couple weeks ago, I was entered in drawings for door prizes at each of the shops I visited. On Tuesday (9/23), Bernina called to let me know I had won their prize. Wow! I hardly ever win anything. Maybe I had good karma that day or something. The prize was a project bag full of little things like fabric, patterns, batting, needles, and a quilt pin.


It is always great to add fabric to my stash, so I am happy just to have won that. I like the little project tote as well, and it looks like it will be useful. The batting is polyester, which I have never used since I have always bought cotton; it will be good to have that on hand to try out as well. The pin is pretty neat, but not sure what I will do with it. I am not one to wear lapel pins, but maybe I can find something to pin it to. Can’t say I care much for the patterns, but maybe I can find a use for them one day if no one else wants them. The bag also had some “Pump Gloves” in it, which apparently are really made with the intention of using them to pump gas. Since they are in this bag of sewing stuff though, I have to assume they are meant to be used to help grip a quilt while free motion quilting. Or maybe to help you grip a ruler? I don’t know. I haven’t opened them yet, but they have little dots on them that look like grippy stuff. I have always just used Machingers gloves for quilting, but I will give these a shot. (if anyone is interested in the patterns, pin, books, or measuring tape… just give me a shout, I will gladly share)

In other news… I get a whole room to myself for sewing! Maybe. I asked Sean if I could move his computer to the bedroom (he actually had this idea a while ago) and take over the computer room completely… he agreed. I don’t really want the computer in the bedroom though. And I don’t really want to be sequestered to a lonely room for hours to work on my hobbies. So, I am going to try to arrange things so we can still fit the computers and all my sewing crap in the same small room. Could be interesting.

That project starts this weekend, and is going to take a long time to complete I fear. The first step is to get rid of the elliptical machine that is hogging what feels like half the room. I called Pro Source and they are coming to get it Monday! Yay! Which means this weekend we will be busy clearing a path to the machine… which means getting Sean’s desk out of the way. So really the first step is moving Sean’s computer to the bedroom I guess, which will hopefully be only temporary… but it will probably end up staying there a while. So, this weekend is going to be a busy one with rearranging the bedroom and computer room. Then, after we get rid of the elliptical Monday, I can start moving my sewing crap in and doing some more rearranging and purging of junk that is cluttering up the closet space.

At first it is going to be pretty cobbled together. I plan to bring in a folding table from the garage and make use of other things we already have around the house. As time goes on I am going to figure out what furniture will work best in there as I get a feel for how I use the space. This probably means a few Ikea trips are in my future, as the sewing tables I really want are stupid expensive.

Once I get settled in, the first thing I will do is construct a cutting table for myself. This is basically a counter-height table to cut fabric on, so I don’t kill my back. I saw lots of great ideas for this while Googling and wandering Pinterest.  While exploring one of those ideas I stumbled on a wood working forum where a nice (and presumably not a serial killer) man offered to give me a laminate table top to use in the endeavor. We will be going up to Franklinton to get that Sunday.  I have no idea what it looks like, but it is free! I don’t want to look a gift horse in the mouth by asking for a picture, but I am told it is a workstation top that is about 30″ x 42″ or so. No clue on the color or condition, but the price is right. Once I know the dimensions for sure, I will figure out what I want to use as a base for it… most likely a couple small book cases or something that would give me storage underneath.

So, if anyone comes across good deals on things that you think will help in the organization of my shiny new sewing room, let me know! That includes used stuff, clearance stuff, whatever. This has to be done on the cheap since it is all coming out of my craft budget. I will be on the lookout for a small computer desk to put my iMac on, probably some bookcases or storage cubes, boxes, bins, and things of that nature. And if anyone goes to Ikea and is willing to pick up a few things, definitely give me a shout! I have a growing Ikea wish list right now, everything from small storage bins to furniture.

Week 19

Tomorrow is the start of week 19! The weeks are going by so fast that I think I am beginning to lose track. The other day I told someone a week less than I should have, and had to correct myself. This is an exciting milestone because it means next Monday will mark the half-way point… which I guess is the real milestone, but it is an exciting one.

I hate trying to figure out how many months the weeks translate to. It really makes no sense. Pregnancy is 40 weeks, but everyone says 9 months. Considering months vary in length, it is pretty hard to convert the week to months. According to my pregnancy journal though, this is the fifth month. And I guess I do look about 5 months pregnant at this point! I had to buy maternity jeans because mine were no longer comfortable, and soon I will probably have to break down and get some shirts too. I just haven’t seen any shirts that I like so far.

The current exciting baby news is that I am starting to feel it move. At first I wasn’t sure, but now it is frequent enough that I am sure I am feeling those “flutters” everyone talks about. They are really light, and go and come quickly. Sometimes it feels like bubbles, other times it almost feels like that tickly tingle you would get from a low electrical current.

Driving to work the other day though, I felt more than a flutter. I swear the kid must have gotten turned so that her feet were pointing forward, and then used the front wall of my uterus to turn herself around by kicking it with her little feet. Those were the first real kicks, and I am sure more will be coming when I least expect it. And then at some point I will probably be like “Come on kid, take a nap already.” Sean is really excited about this development, and can’t wait until he can feel the kicks too. That will probably be a few more weeks though.

And the baby room! Aside from decor, we have also gotten the nursery mostly finished. The painting is done, the furniture is assembled, and our backs are killing us. Now we just need to get a glider rocker, a crib mattress, find some cute decor, and dispose of a mountain of cardboard. I am pretty sure we are going to go with a cute owl theme, but I will see what we find. The owls are definitely my favorite option so far though.


The painting is done! Well, technically. There are still a few things left to do, like putting the wooden valance back up and toting the trash bags stuffed with masking tape, drop clothes, paint tray liners, etc outside. Then we just need to get that elliptical out of the room and vacuum… then we will be all set for stage 3 of baby room prep: Furniture Assembly.

Although, getting the 350 pound elliptical out could be considered a stage by itself, considering it will require rearranging another room and dissembling/reassembling the thing. I guess after finishing the cleanup tonight we will start getting the other room ready for the machine, then assess the disassembly and moving of the monstrosity. Should be interesting.

At first I wasn’t so sure about the color we chose, but it is growing on me. It especially looks good in the morning when the sun is on that side of the house. Although now that the room is a girly color (very light orange) they will probably tell us it is a boy at the next ultrasound and we will have to start over! Or the boy can just deal with a kinda girly room. Never liked gender stereotypes much anyway.

17 Weeks

Today is the beginning of week 17. One more week down. Thinking of it in weeks really does make things go faster. At first I just concentrated on making it to the second trimester. Now I am working my way towards the halfway point of 20 weeks, and I am almost there!

Thursday night I started taking the Zantac recommended by the doctor. It has helped a lot already, and the doctor had said not to expect the full affects until probably today. So hopefully that means from here on out things will be a lot better as far as acid reflux and morning sickness. With the acid decreased (meaning not continually nauseous) I noticed something else that may help me stay on top of feeling sick. It seems I need to eat every three hours. I had been told not to go more than four hours without eating, but now I am really beginning to understand that. All weekend I noticed that once I hit about 3.5 hours without eating the nausea was back and I quickly began to feel awful.

This weekend was a busy one. I haven’t been this active in months due to feeling like crap all the time. Since I was already feeling a little better with the Zantac, I decided to suck it up and brave a trip to Concord for Sean’s cousin’s first birthday. And since I really didn’t feel like making multiple trips, we went to Ikea for furniture while we were out there. I tried to eat on the three hour schedule, which seemed to help a lot. I still felt really wiped out by all the walking at Ikea, and by the time we got home I was completely exhausted. I was still feeling drained the next day, but I managed to help Sean clear out things in the guest/baby room. Wendell was nice enough to come over and help with the carrying of things to the storage unit, which I am grateful for… I am not supposed to carry heavy things, so we couldn’t have done it without help.

So, after a very productive weekend, we are on our way to having the baby room done. We still have some small stuff to pack up and take to the storage unit, and we have to figure out how the heck to get the 350lb elliptical moved. Then it is painting and furniture assembly!

Ah, homeownership…

We have been even busier than usual this past week. As I posted before, we went to Ikea last weekend. Since then we haven’t slowed down. Monday night we cleared out the computer room, Tuesday we primed, Wednesday we painted, Thursday we painted some more, and Friday we assembled our furniture and put the room back together. It is so great to finally have it done! Well, close enough to call it done.

The new furniture and lighter color has really helped this tiny room feel bigger. It is still a bit tight, but not nearly as bad as it was before. There are still a couple small things left to do, like putting up shelves. But that can wait for another day. Or another week preferably. I am ready to just relax and enjoy the work we have done.

The relaxation probably won’t last too long though. I am itching to start our next project. The accent wall around the fireplace is still the red color the previous owner put up. It is really out of place with our furniture and new curtains, so it has to go! We also need to give the neglected yard some attention as soon as it stops raining. And once those things are done maybe we will finally tackle the task of refinishing the deck.

An Ikea Adventure

We have been wanting to go to Ikea for a while now, but wanted to wait until it had been open a while first. However, we ended up being impatient as always and tentatively planned to go Saturday. We found ourselves wide awake pretty early in the morning so we decided we might as well go.

The plan was to buy a couple desks and a few other furniture items, so we decided to rent a van to get it all back. Unfortunately we soon found that car rental places didn’t open until 9, and then we ended up having to do a few things… so we still didn’t get on the road until around 11:00. That was the start of a long long day.

Aside from seeing a dog on the back of a motorcycle (with a helmet even!) it was a pretty uneventful trip down. I think the drive to Charlotte is one of the most boring ones you can take actually, unless you plan on shopping along the way… which I never do. I always end up feeling like it takes much longer than it really does for some reason… but we eventually found ourselves at the Ikea exit.

On the main road they have cops standing by to direct traffic, but luckily the traffic wasn’t that bad while we were there. As you pull into the parking lot there are attendants that direct you along and help you find a parking spot. It was very orderly and we got a spot very close to the door despite a huge parking lot that was packed as far as you could see… made me wish every parking lot had people to direct us to a spot!

That was where the easy and smooth ended though. Ikea is two floors, and has set up a route through all the sections to keep you from getting lost and keep the traffic flowing in one direction. The top floor is a showroom of the furniture, with only a few places to pick up items for purchase. The top floor has little example rooms set up all along the path, some of them a little hidden as you have to walk through others to find them. The other areas are filled with all the different options for individual items. The bottom floor has no show rooms, just tons of things to buy. The warehouse for large items was also located on the first floor… self serve so you have to be prepared for some heavy lifting.

Normally that set up would have flowed nicely and been pretty easy, but the place was PACKED with people. If they were not all moving in the same general direction it would have been chaos. Trying to look around some of the more closed off example rooms was a pain, having to maneuver around people, and sometimes having to wait to squeeze into a tight area to check a tag for information. And with the mass of people around we had to stick together so we weren’t separated.

While I loved Ikea, the experience was very tiring. Not only did it take hours to just get through the place, but we felt rushed the whole time because we were trying not to get trampled and we needed to get back home to the dogs before too late. The swarm of people was another added stress, that just made the whole experience much more tiring than it should have been. I really hope it calms down after they have been open a while. Maybe our next trip will have to be on a weekday, and not for another few months.

Because of the people it was nearly impossible to backtrack. There were a few things we saw as we walked through, but didn’t decide to buy until later on. For instance, when we bought something farther down the line that something we saw an hour ago would have been perfect with…. or things that we were iffy about in the 30 seconds we were looking at it but decided we liked it later after having time to think about it. We decided that it wasn’t worth it and if we still want it later we can always go back.

By the time we made it to the checkout going back for any reason was just unthinkable. It felt like climbing a mountain and making it back, just to realize you left something on the top. There was no way we were going back!

We ended up with a ton of stuff…. two desks, file cabinet, comforters, duvets, a chair, desk lamps, wall shelves, and various odds and ends. Check it out!

It was a long long day, we finally got home shortly before 8pm. The day was not over yet though! We still had to put together our new bed (from Overstock) and put our new comforters in the duvets. We also had to find dinner and return the van.

It was a long, but rewarding day. The best part for me was getting to go to sleep at the end of it I think… in a new bed with new comfy sheets and the most comfortable alternative down comforter I have ever had. The best part for Sean was getting to rent the van. He fell in love with the fold-flat seats. I have been teasing him about how much he liked the van. He is such an old man!

It was quite late when we finally got to sleep, so we slept in this morning and are still being lazy around the house. I am hanging out in the new bed with the laptop, Eddie, and kitty. The plan was to not let the dogs on the bed anymore, but I just didn’t have the heart make Eddie get down… it only took the poor dog about fifty tries to finally make it up here with the added height.

Well, it is past time to start our day… there are so many things to be done. We have to bathe the dogs, pick out a new paint color for the computer room, clean house before mom gets here this evening, do laundry, and hopefully squeeze in some yard work.

Good news, we found the counters

We finally finished in the kitchen a few days ago, it feels great to finally have all the clutter off of our counters. They were so covered for the past week that I could barely see them, and now that they are clear of junk we continue to marvel at how shiny and mirror-like the granite is. It was also a relief to find that we have ample cabinet space, as we were a little worried about that. The only task remaining for the kitchen is to find some manner of spice rack for the pantry door.

Now that there are only a few odds and ends left downstairs, we are feeling pretty accomplished. Or at least, I was feeling that way until I looked in the computer room last night. There are still so many boxes in that small room that it is hard to navigate in there. Oh well, at least the rest of the house is somewhat orderly now. I think Sean and I are both kind of avoiding the computer room until we find desks anyway… so maybe we will just make the stacks of boxes a little more orderly for now.

The new grill I mentioned in the last post is great by the way, Sean made an excellent choice. We are loving the grill so much that we haven’t even cooked inside yet. Unfortunately it is supposed to rain all week though, so looks like we are going to break in the kitchen tonight. So far the only thing the oven has been used for was last night’s tasty cookie treat.

We also finally got the TV moved over this weekend, but still no cable or internet; that should come Sunday afternoon. Although Sean hooked up the PS3 last night for a much deserved break in housework, and played a little Grant Theft Auto. So I guess we at least have some form of entertainment in the house now… as long as you don’t mind sitting on the floor. We still don’t have any furniture! Although, we did order some for the living room (not the TV room) and it should be here Friday. So, at least we will have a place to sit and relax pretty soon. I am also hoping to find a futon or something for the TV room this weekend, but I am not sure how much time we will have for that between my grandfather’s out-of-town birthday party on Saturday, and the cable guy on Sunday.

Well, that is about all that is happening in our exciting lives at the moment… just continuing to settle into our new home and loving every minute of it.