Monday, July 19, 2010

Visiting Grace

Head on over to Sense and Simplicity and check out my guest post.  You just might learn something new about me.

I am honored that Grace asked me to participate in her summer guest blog post activity.  Grace is featuring a different blogger each Monday, so be sure to check them out and discover other bloggers.

Thank you for the opportunity, Grace!  It was so much fun.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Checking the List

By now, you probably thought I was abducted in Dallas but I am happy to report that I made it back home safe and sound.  

Unfortunately, we haven't done much on Imani's room over the last couple of weeks.  It's hard to work on a surprise renovation when the person you're surprising lives in the house.  We will likely work on her room in a few weeks when she goes away to visit her grandma.

We haven't really been doing any home decorating or renovations lately.  It's been so incredibly hot, as I'm sure most of you have experienced across the country.  I made Jason move our mattress in on Imani's floor because her room is the only one with an air conditioner.  Of course, Imani's thrilled because we've been having "sleep overs" in her room for the past two weeks.

I've been so overwhelmed with the heat that I placed an order for central air conditioning last week.   I'm so excited because they said it would be installed by the end of this week.  No more mattresses on floors for us!

Other than the big AC purchase, we really haven't done much around here in the way of renovating.  We've just been enjoying the summer.  Every year, we make a list of things we want to do over the summer and try to do as many as possible before it's time for Imani to go back to school.  We've been having fun going through that list. 

One of the things that's on my list every year is to visit my sister, who lives in New York City, which is about 4 1/2 hours away from Ithaca.

So for 4th of July weekend, we made the trip down to see her.


It's always fun visiting her because there is always something to do.  We went to the beach.
Imani always has fun digging a giant whole trying to find water.


We also went to an Andy Warhol art show, where we discovered Warhol used his own urine to create his oxidation paintings.


Imani and Aunt D decided just to use crayon for their art creations at the museum.

After we toured the art museum, there was a party outside where Aunt D showed Imani some dance moves.



And then we watched the fireworks from the rooftop, which was very cool.  I didn't take pictures of the fireworks though because I had no idea I'd blog about this trip and a photo album with fireworks doesn't really sound appealing to me.





And this week, my sister is coming up to visit us.  Hopefully, we'll have AC installed.  Otherwise, it's going to be a very big sleepover in Imani's room.

So what else is on the list this summer?

Actually, there are two lists.  One is for home projects and one is for activities to enjoy.

First, projects:

Install hardwood floors in Imani's bedroom

Create storage in Imani's bedroom

Install wood on Imani's ceiling and paint it white

Re-decorate Imani's room

Get a new roof

Get Central AC?

Begin to address outside landscaping

Finish the office under the stairs (decorate)

Create a backsplash for the kitchen

And now activities (which is created by all three of us):
Visit D in NYC
Go berry picking
Make homeade jam
Go to an amusement park
Go to a water park
Go camping
Visit Buffalo
Make homeade salsa
Go on a picnic
Go hiking
Go to the beach
Find seaglass
What's on your summer to do list?


Thursday, July 1, 2010

Storage Dilemma

If you're a regular here, you know we almost sold our house.  You also know there are a lot of things I love about this house. 

But, like anyone, I have a few things I hate about my house too.

The biggest thing I hate is that we  have a damp basement.  We used to have a wet basement until Kelby helped Jason address drainage around the outside of our house.

I hate having a damp basement because that means we can't finish it and use it as a toy room as many families do.  Very little even gets stored in our basement because it's musty and gross.

The other thing I hate about my house is that, since it's a Cape Cod style home, there is very little storage in general.  This, coupled with the basement's dampness, makes the situation with toys and clutter especially challenging.

But I am on a mission for a solution.

I've heard of people with Cape Cod style homes using the space behind their upstairs bedroom walls as storage by building in dressers or cabinets.

On Apartment Therapy, for example, they feature how one person built drawers and bookshelves into the unused space in their upstairs bedroom in their Cape.

And, here you can read about how Michael found storage for his daugher in their 1950s Cape.

So we are hoping that we might be able to do something similar to help store Imani's toys but keep them accessible to her.  Wish us luck!

If you have found storage in a Cape, please share how! 

I also need suggestions on how you store toys if you don't have a finished basement.  Do tell!

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