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Saturday, August 23, 2014

Old Drawings

I recently dug up some of my old drawings. By that I mean that when I was in junior high and even high school, and I would get bored in the summer, I drew. We went to my grandma's and grandpa's house every day in the summer, and there wasn't too much to do but watch TV, make crafts, draw, read, hang out in the yard, and look at magazines. So, I watched a lot of TV, looked at a lot of magazines, and drew pictures.

I drew people a lot. Random people that I made up the stories of and told them on paper. But I also drew a lot of houses.

Mostly they were houses that I created in my head - usually how I imagined my house would look like when I grew up. My dream house, if you will.

Sometimes I was inspired by houses in magazines, or even my neighbors' house across the street from ours like this one:

Looking back I remember I was obsessed with tall, Arched windows. You know the ones I'm talking about, right? If not, see the drawing below. Or all of these for that matter.

I even imagined little suburban neighborhoods with cute houses and people jogging or walking their dogs outside. 

I wanted to live in a beautiful, new housing addition. But one where every house had their own unique style and personality. (And lots of windows everywhere.)

You can definitely tell which are my older drawings - they're a little less detailed, less realistic, and look a lot more "cartoon-like." --

I even drew my dream house layout. Complete with an indoor basketball court and in-ground pool. I'm guessing I was around 13 when I drew this. Yep, I was this kid:

A lot of the names and labels are hard to see in this picture, but I pretty much laid out a whole quiet little town here:

And this looks like a town straight out of the 1800's....I'm sure I was looking at pictures of those little miniature Christmas villages or something when I drew this:

All of those drawings are of house exteriors, but I definitely drew a lot of interiors too. I dreamed about being an interior designer in junior high and high school, and I used magazines for a lot of my inspiration. I constantly looked at my grandma's Good Housekeeping and Country Living magazines, and even the huge JC Penney catalogs, and drew rooms that looked like they came straight from their pages.

The funny thing is that I remember my grandma's ginormous drawer full of scratch paper, which actually came from my aunt, who was a third grade teacher. The leftover sheets of paper from her classroom went straight here for scratch paper. I drew on the back of Multiplication worksheets, coloring pages...even when I was at home I would draw on the back of church bulletins. And if you look closely at this drawing below, you can see an outline of Barney in a top hat on the other side. Classic. :)

Again with the arched windows...obsessed, I tell you.

I was also very much obsessed with candles. I swore that when I "grew up," my house would be full of candles. And of course they would be lit at all times. :)

I very much dreamed about having a deck someday to watch the sunset from, too.

Finally, I drew pictures of what I wanted to be like when I grew up and had my own house. What my house would be like, what I would be doing....

It was apparent from the start that I WOULD have a dog. That dog in the drawing above resembles Saleen a little, don't you think? Ok, maybe not. :)

Of course I would be an interior designer, or fashion designer, or some kind of glamorous, creative job. Well, I wouldn't say I'm that far off but I think I have a ways to go yet.


It's fun to look back at when I imagined what my "grown up" life would be like. Now it's right here in front of me and my dreams have kind of been replaced by reality. I'm here trying to fix up a century-old house into the house of my dreams, which almost seems impossible most days. It is what it is, right?

Friday, August 15, 2014

One Year From Today

One year from today I will marry my best friend.

On August 15, 2015, Trent and I will say 'I do' at a place that has quickly stolen our hearts.

We've fallen in love with the beautiful Historic Quarters One on the Rock Island Arsenal, and I cannot wait to create and share in the memories of our perfect day next year.

It is an absolutely gorgeous place with its elegant halls in the mansion and perfect sunsets by the river. I have a feeling that when we're old and gray we will continue to visit from time to time and look back on what will soon become the best day of our lives.


I cannot wait to marry him one year from today. :)

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Grill Makeover

It's finally time to post our Grill makeover! Another one of Trent's DIY projects. It's been a month or so since Trent sprayed on the first coat of high heat black paint on the old charcoal grill that Trent's friend Sean gave us. All that was left was another coat, some poly on the wooden pieces, and a few finishing touches. Now, it's finally complete, and here's the Before and After:

When Sean gave the grill to us, here's what it looked like:

Not terrible, still usable. But it needed a little sprucing up. A few coats of paint later:

And some Poly on the wooden side tray and handle:

Plus spraying the metal accessory tray out front a metallic color, and reattaching the he is after his little makeover:

He looks all shiny and new now! (update - Trent thinks the grill should be referred to as a 'she', so my bad...SHE looks all shiny and new now. Geesh!)

Here are a couple of detail shots for ya....

I love revamping things with a little paint and making them look brand new again.

It's nice to have little side projects to work on throughout the summer to take our minds away from larger issues like the basement/ basement door and the foundation! I think we have enough large house projects to last twenty years....

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Bedroom Shelves Complete!

It seems like forever ago when Trent started his Bedroom Shelf project. I mean, it was in April when it all began! For all my former posts about these shelves, visit hereherehere, and here.

Well, he's finally finished, and I'm excited to reveal it today! Drumroll please......

Here's the finished product:

Isn't it beauty-ful? I'm so proud of Trent and what he accomplished! It's actually lighter than we had planned - we were going to go for more of a dark chocolate brown...but the stain color showed a lot lighter than what we thought, and we decided to just roll with it. It almost has an antiqued look, and I thought it turned out pretty cool, and unique. Here it is before we moved all of the storage bins inside:

He started with a bunch of pieces of wood, and to think that he got all the way to this awesome, custom made shelving unit is pretty awesome.

You can't beat a custom-built and designed storage unit - it has a lot more lasting power than a cheap Target shelf system made of particle board! And this thing is HEAVY. I know - I helped move it multiple times!

It took a lot of sanding - there were screws that Trent had to cover with wood putty, and trim pieces attached to all front edges of the shelf, which give it that chunky, thick look. So after sanding and sanding, he was finally able to apply a couple of coats of stain, then cover it with Poly to seal it in and give it a slick, shiny surface.

I think we're both really happy with how it turned out, and seems to be working well so far. Trent desperately needed a place to store his clothes, so now with these cloth bins, he has spots for each kind of clothing item. And the larger "cubby hole" in the bottom right corner is going to hold a hamper. For now, we just have two bins stacked together. 

I like that it has a large surface on top for Trent to set small things on, and his deodorant and cologne. I'm just hoping it doesn't get too cluttered. :)

Anyway, I'm super excited it's done! Especially since it looked like this just a couple month ago:

Substantially better and more functional now, don't you think?

Trent's current project is now putting in a new basement door. I'll definitely have to do a post soon...Not the most exciting thing ever, but it's another step closer to getting the basement to the point where we can raise the living room and kitchen to be level. No idea it would take this long, but it really does take time. It's definitely not an overnight thing. To find the time to finish projects is a task in itself!

On to the next always. :)

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