The office/guestroom is, like, a room now

Wah-hoo!!   It’s amazing what a little impending overnight guest does for a little kick in the pants. It’s been a crazy week.   I know I’ve said it before, but I really mean it.   We’re having company this weekend (really, for the first time since moving in), so it’s been a mad dash to try and get some unfinished projects done.   The house is (of course) nowhere near finished (that’ll take YEARS, I’m sure), but we just wanted to clean up a few things that were needing some immediate work.   And in this mad race, I didn’t stop to take “after” pictures until today. #mybad

On top of the recent house-project mania, there was also work stuff that dominated my time… for those who don’t know, I’m an oncology dietitian.  I work with people undergoing chemo or radiation to help keep them nourished and hydrated, as well as to help them manage side effects during treatment.   My license renewal is happening this month and for the first time in 9 years, I was chosen for audit, which means that I’m supposed to send in proof of my continuing education.  When I went to send in my continuing education credits, I was told that of the 12 required credits, only 6 of mine would be counted since they were all self-study.  (FYI… I’d knocked out 32 self-study credits over the two year license period (a surplus of 20 above the requirement) and only 6 counted. Ugh.).  I guess I didn’t realize this little caveat since (1) I’d always had at least 6 in-person seminar hours before, and (2) there’s no limit on self-study for our registration (the other requirement to practice).   So, I’ve been scrambling to get another 6 “live” credits before the end of the month when they’re due.  As of now, I’ve signed up for them all, and am knocking ’em out one by one, but I nearly had a heart-attack when I initially realized my mistake.   It was several days of heavy-duty networking, and online research to even LOCATE said education opportunities within such a short period of time.  I’m a planner and a total goodie-goodie when it comes to work, so I couldn’t believe I’d let this slip by me.   Lesson learned. Never again. So, cross your fingers that all of the moderators to the seminars/webinars I’m attending get our certificates of completion out to us quickly.  (please)

Anyways, as the days go on, things at the ole’ homestead are slowly coming back together again and my head feels like it’s gradually reattaching to my brain, which is nice.  So, here’s what’s been going on house-wise.  Joey’s been a mad-man out in the backyard (I’ll have a post about that soon), and I’ve been checking off a bunch of items inside.   Among them was the office/guestroom.   Here’s how it looked the last time I showed it to you…

It’s a great room in that it gets really fantastic light in the mornings and has a pretty view out of the window.  Which you can sort of see here (sorry about my photography skills)…

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It’s the smallest of our bedrooms, but is still a decent size.   My main issue with it was that it REALLY needed to be painted.   It was the same peach color as the master bath and since it was a flat paint finish, it was really dirty in spots.  Plus, this was the room that we had the flood prior to moving in, so the drywall was patched, but not painted.

Not a good look if you ask me.

This room contains most the decor remnants from our very first house that managed to survive our multiple moves.   That house had a very “Tuscan” color scheme.  Taupes, greens, reds, with cherry wood accents.  Very different from our last and current houses.   So, the brownish accents that I still liked enough to keep, are pretty much in this space only.   Now, I’ll admit, my taste has changed and I’ve mentally dubbed these as “for now” pieces.  But regardless, I’m grateful to be able to use them to decorate the space (forfree) until I find new stuff to replace them.

With this plan in mind, I wanted to select a paint color that worked with these items, but would also work with a cooler color palette for when I eventually change this stuff out.   And the color that I landed on was Loggia by Sherwin Williams (ie: the same color that we painted our house’s exterior).   Its a neutral taupe tone that has more grey than anything.   It could easily work with cool colors, but fits in swimmingly with warm as well.   Basically, if Joey’s personality was a paint color it’d be Loggia.  He gets along with everyone.

I’d originally intended to get the paint color-matched with a cheaper paint to save some money, but when I went to Lowes I realized that they now sell an affordable line of Sherwin Williams paints!   Perfect!  They were able to simply pull up Loggia in the computer and mix it exactly.   I chose the cheapest paint (Ovation) in an eggshell finish which ran me just over $28.   Not too shabby. Once I got home, I got down to business, which pretty much resembled the state of my brain the past few weeks…

I have to say that was super impressed by the coverage of this paint.   In the words of that guy in that Indiana Jones movie (you know the one ;))… I chose wiiiisely.    Here’s the difference in the peach vs. Loggia…

I loved it immediately.   It’s taupey grey neutrality.  Even in it’s half-wet state.

Once I had the walls painted, I moved everything back, hung some curtains and the art that I already had on hand, which left this…

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It always amazes me how much a set of curtains adds to a room.

In reassembling the space, I actually tried floating the bed on the adjoining wall (with the head beneath the painting) so that everything wasn’t so crammed against the perimeter, and it looked much better than the current layout.   Then, I realized that functionality-wise, I wanted more floor space.  I sometimes do workout videos in this room and I like just being able to plop down without having to rearrange the furniture.   So, in this case, I’m sacrificing looks for function.  Honestly, I’m just glad to have enough space to do that.  Our last house had such small rooms, that I really didn’t have space to workout in any room without bumping into furniture (even after I’d moved it out of the way).

Here’s the desk area as of now…

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I simply styled the shelves more and switched out the desk drawer knobs for those delicate little guys that I found at Target on sale for $5 for a set of 10.   See that old school camera and the lenses on the lower shelf??

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I got that as a white elephant gift at a good friend’s Christmas party.  I’m not sure who gave it, but I happen to think its completely awesome.

And lastly the wall that that backs up to the hallway…

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I still have some more tweaks that I’d like to do in here…  I’d love to someday get a headboard, jazz up the nightstand, improve the bedding, get a wireless printer so that we can hide that eyesore, and add a nice area rug for interest, but this room definitely jumped leaps and bounds from where it was.  I’m just glad to have this done and to be able to say “…and this is the guest room/office…” minus the “…we still have a ton to do in here.  Pay no attention to the walls…” part. ;)

Easy Mirrored Planters – Monthly DIY Challenge

Howdy, guys!  It’s that time again!  What time???

Monthly DIY Challenge time! Woot!

For those who don’t know, this is a monthly challenge that I participate in along with some other mighty talented bloggers.   We’re simply assigned a theme (or an item) and must make something with it.  Easy peasy.  And this month’s theme was….

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The dollar store!

I’ll admit, I was pretty excited about this one.  Not only is the dollar store close to my penny-pinching heart, the possibilities are endless!   So, I headed right around the corner to our local 99 Cents Only store and got going.   After corralling the aisles for a while and being pretty impressed with their selection of plants (which ranged from $1.99-2.99), I decided to personalize some planters for these sweet viney guys…

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 Aren’t they charming?

I’m totally picturing them channeling the pansies from Alice in Wonderland right now (The cartoon, not the creepy Johnny Depp version.  Seriously, though… doesn’t Johnny Depp make creepy look good? Just sayin’. ;) )

Now, I must profess that there is imminent danger when shopping at the 99 Cents Only store.  You will end up buying much more than you planned on. It happens to me every time.   And this trip was especially dangerous since I literally circled the store four times, just making sure that I didn’t miss anything.   And I missed nothing.  Trust me.  This was halfway through shopping…  

I literally got all of the plants that I needed for my covered back patio for under 20 bucks.   It was magical.

Anyways, what I ended up choosing for planters were these glass candle vases, which I purchased for (you guessed it!) 99 cents each!

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I loved how sturdy and stout they were, and their low profiles had me at hello.

Now, for what to do with them…. I’ve seen “dipped” vases all over Pinterest for some time now (and even created my own version here a while back).  I’ve always adored the simplicity and elegance of them.  How that simple band of color lends so much to whatever item it’s adorning.   This time I wanted to replicate that effect on my candle vases with this mirrored spray paint….

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I’d purchased it about a year ago.  Then it sat, completely ignored and neglected, up until now.   After reading the label, I learned that the shiny “mirror effect” happened when you painted the reverse side of the glass, but I actually wanted a slightly duller effect.   Shiny, but not quite mirror-tastic.  I wanted it to look like old, aged chrome basically, so I decided to paint the outside of the glass instead.  Plus, I figured it was better for the plant to not have spray paint fumes infusing the soil.

I started by cleaning my vases well with vinegar to remove any oils or dirt, then I taped them off with painters tape…

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See those wrinkles and bubbles in the shot above?  I made sure to press all of those down flat before painting.   Then, I set them upside-down on some cardboard…

IMG_8936Yeeeeeaaaahhh…. I didn’t even remove the labels.  I figured they’d be hidden anyways.

And gave them three thin, even coats of spray paint…

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I was sure to remove the tape while the spray paint was still wet to avoid any sad tragedies involving peeled-off paint…

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I immediately loved the imperfection in the finish.  The little dots and dimples.  It was exactly what I was going for and another reason that I’d wanted to use the mirror spray paint as opposed to plain silver spray paint.  After allowing my planters to cure in the garage for 24 hours, it was planting time.   I simply stole some pea gravel from Lucas’s play area out back…

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Then, added my plants with some potting soil…

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And here they are chilling on my patio along with some cute placemats, which I also found at the 99 Cents Only for (say it with me now) 99 cents a pop….

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Call it nepotism, but my new children vases totally steal the show, right?

Haha!  None of my other planters stand a chance. ;)

I love that they’re sophisticated with a touch of glam.   And the texture of the soil peeking through the glass makes me happy.  Plus, those bright, viney leaves are such a welcome contrast to that sexy, sleek vase.   Me-OW!

I did some googling to figure out what these plants are (since they didn’t come with a tag or label), and I think they’re Heartleaf Philodendrons.   Thus, I plan to move these guys indoors for a little air filtration action.  Apparently, they’re little beasts when it comes to attacking many types of nasty VOCs (like formaldehyde which is used in certain types of particleboard and such).    So, BONUS!   This challenge has gifted me with cute planters AND cleaner air.   I call that a success.  (Fistpump!)

Now, check out the other awesome projects created by my bloggy friends.  Trust me, you won’t be disappointed…