Monday, April 30, 2012

"To know where you are going, you must first know where you have been"

I have lived on my own for over 10 years now. In those 10 years, I have moved 8 times.....EIGHT. and almost none of those moves were "temporary" moves...every time I moved, I set up house...I settled in....I decorated...I gave the place every ounce of house love that I had......only to have to leave a short time later. I went from my childhood home to 4 different apartments...a town first house...another apartment...the rental home that stole my heart...and I am getting ready to move to my last home for a while. After this move, I am throwing away the boxes. It's time for me to settle in for a bit, make myself comfortable and enjoy my space for as long as I want. 

But like I said...I loved my homes. and you can't appreciate moving forward without looking back every once in a while. 

So come with me on a little tour of my past homes...and some of my favorite spaces.

(please excuse the quality of these photos...some came from my camera...some from my phone and others were scanned in)

The Coppell House

This is the home I grew up was built in 1992 and I lived there for 10 years. It was the classic "red brick" suburban house...3 bedrooms....3 bathrooms...a true formal living and dining room...a study with a big oak desk...and an entry with green marble floors and a huge gold and crystal chandelier. Oh. So. 90's :)

The Red House

My ex husband and I bought this house when we were 23 years old. I got the idea one day that I was going to call a realtor and figure out if we could get a rental house because I was sick of living in apartments....a young realtor and his wife showed us two houses....this was the second less than a month, we went from apartment renters to home owners. It was a whirlwind of an experience, but that was kinda how our life was. I loved this house. It was in a "planned community" that had 3 HUGE swimming pools with water park style water slides, caves, splash pads and more...huge parks....a club house with a work out room, media area, and tons of community events. The only was about 40 minutes outside of town. The Red house was a builder spec home when we bought it...just over 2200 sq ft...4 bedrooms, 3 baths, a formal dining room and a huge game room upstairs. (I still own this house and I'm currently renting it out to a quiet, lovely, older couple....I now refer to this house as my kids college fund LOL)

The Apartment

Leaving the red house was the start of my new life....from here I moved in to a cute 2nd story apartment in the town I live in now. It was a beautiful space...hard wood floors, spacious kitchen with stainless appliances...lots of upgrades and a view of the upscale shopping center below. But I'm a Texas girl...which means I need some room to breathe...and a second story apartment felt like a boxed in prison cell to me. But in the 15 months that I was there, I did my best to make it mine by creating my own little "CL-Office" (closet office)

And my craft closet

But I could only take so I told the nerdy boy it was time to find a home. some how. some way. it had to happen. So I got a new (totally awesome) realtor...who had saint like paitience while he took me to look at about 25 different rental houses....and I found a problem with each of them "I don't like the neighborhood" "its too dark" "too much brass" etc. Then I came across my little was the strangest place I had ever been had really strange paint colors (think highlighter green bedrooms, a red wine dining room and a black kitchen) and an even stranger kitchen........but something about it spoke to me. I HAD to have it. and so started my 16 month love affair with a house :)

The Rental that Stole My Heart

 It's nothing fancy...or incredible...but it was home. I spent the last 6 months attempting to get the nerdy boy to just let me rent this place forever(even though we pay WAYYYY too much in rent and our landlord is absolutely impossible to deal with) but after finally coming to terms with the fact that there were some pretty serious foundation issues...and some bad plumbing and heating issues...the house that had my heart started to look more and more like a giant money pit. 

I hate that I am just now posting this today...when more than half of my house is in boxes...all the pictures are off my walls...and its just not my pretty little place anymore. But I did manage to salvage a few face book pics to show you a few of my favorite spaces

Like my entry way 

And our "command center" 

And my office

With my little craft nook

Sigh...isn't it dreamy? 

 And finally...after being moved twice within her first year of little Skylar had a room of her own <3

Every one of these places holds a place in my heart and lots of fond memories. they were each stepping stones in my life path to get me to where I am today...and I can't wait to leap to the next stone. 

Friday, April 27, 2012

"A Dream is A Wish Your Heart Makes"

betcha can't remember the rest of that song? either lol. It's some thing Disney though and I'm sure its just lovely.

So I know you Pin...daily? hourly? every waking minute? I remember when I first found pinterest last summer and probably spent 3 full days glued to the screen in my pajamas taking small meals at my desk...I came out of my pinterest stupor when the nerdy boy related me to some of his gaming junkie friends. Thanks for the PINtervention dear ;)

I probably check my "people I follow" page twice a day ... then occasionally will scoot over to Home and Decor, DIY or Food .................. if I feel like gettin snarky, I'll head to the humor page, but not to go all internet hipster on you....if its made its way to pinterest....that means the nerdy boy has already seen it on one of his random instant internet creation websites and determined if I would find it humorous and sent it to me. (its a blessing and a curse all in the same)

But I will honestly say...I have no clue what I did before Pinterest...

** Shameless plug**

I love finding pictures that are relatable to my style...I've even found a couple that pretty much exactly replicate what I am trying to achieve.

Like for the kitchen mini-face lift....check this one out:

When I came across this I was like OMG! THAT'S IT!!!!!!! the white cabinets...the black counter top...even down to the almost exact hammered tin paneled back splash! gah! isn't it loverly? 

I also got a couple ideas from that chandelier. LOVE....and the apron sink. SWOON. I don't particularly love the window covering, but I do love how they framed out the window and the little detail of the molding that they put on the small space on top of the tin where it meets the window.

So lets see how close I can get to this with the mess that I am working with...fingers crossed I can at least come close.

But remember...this is just a mini face lift...the big reno is a couple years down the road...and that's when I'm going to do something this:

Getting rid of my terrible tiny island in favor of a peninsula.

Doesn't the peninsula make the banquette area look so cozy!

Super smart organization of the small amount of cabinet space that I more nesting all of my casserole dishes inside one another and having to clank around to get to the lasagna pan!


LOVE this for storing the small things in my teeny tiny pantry...Would also be great for seasoning packets, kid snacks and baking goodies!

Speaking of Pantries....down the road we intend on closing in the double doors that lead from the front room in to our kitchen and merging that space with the existing pantry to create an L shaped, walk in pantry.....I could only hope to make it look as gorg as this one!

Dreaming big here...the window...the molding... THAT BACK SPLASH...the sink...the counters...oy, just all of it. 

And finally....the bead board ceiling...the vent...a couple glass cabinets...and most importantly...the floor. Probably sooner than later (think family xmas present) we will be replacing the carpet in the downstairs with dark, wide planked wood floors much like these 

So...can you see it? do you see the dream....I can :) 

Welcome to 1992....THAT kitchen...

the house I grew up in was built in 92....the same year as the house that I just purchased...and I'm not even kidding...I'm pretty sure these exact same hideous 2x2 green tiles and oak-y brown cabinets were in that house as well.

This kitchen is just plain...well it's just plain bad is what it is. The lay out is awkward...the amount of storage space is laughable at best and the microwave and dishwasher are ancient. 

BUT THAT IS WHY YOU BUY A you can get a deal, and use your savings to make it yours.

Which is perfect for us, because in the area that we live, the common style is VERY different from what we like....around here, you would think that every single person went straight to their builder and said "I want a Tuscan kitchen" EVERYTHING around here is heavy brown wood and oiled bronze and brown granite's...and while yes it really looks great when matched with the proper decor...its simply not my style. It's too stuffy...too dark..its just not what we like. I prefer BRIGHT. CLEAN. CRISP.....but don't get that confused with COLD. HARD. INDUSTRIAL. 

So though I would love to go in with a sledge hammer and drop half of these walls and get rid of those terrible cabinets and counter tops...the truth of the matter is the nerdy boy is a grad student and I am a stay at home mom...we don't have piles of money laying around.

We do have a little bit of wiggle money though, and we are going to use that to make this kitchen livable...for at least the next couple years...just a little botox remember?

The plan is to resurface the cabinets (inside and out) in a bright white shade

Add some hardware

Do a faux granite paint on the counter tops (in a *hopefully* greyish/whiteish/blackish tone)

Install a hammered tin back splash OVER the ugly green 2x2s

Build a banquette for the breakfast nook

Create a Command Center with a wall mounted TV in the top corner

And paint the room a pretty silvery grey color

Create an organized pantry (and possibly paint with an accent color if time/money allows)

Scrape out those awful drawer/cabinet liners and put in a cleaner liner 

Then walk away..................

That's it. No new ripping anything up or replacing anything...we are just making it less of an eye sore to get us through the next couple of years. Our budget for this is a meager $500. and that is going to have to buy:

- Cabinet resurfacing kit (we like the rustoleum one...but we are undecided)
- Counter top resurfacing kit (probably going to use Giani for this) 
- Hardware
- Hammered tin panels
- Lumber & supplies for the banquette
- Fabric for the seat cushions, pillows, window treatments
- Knick Knacks
- Room Paint 
- Misc Supplies

So needless to say...its going to be a tight job with little room for error....oh ya, and we are only giving ourselves 3 days to get it done in. HAH. 

This should be VERY interesting.

We're Just a Couple of Misfits...that's where we fit in!

Name that movie! Ready Set Go!

My band of little clan...Over the years I have piece mailed together a strange mix of friends that are closer to me than family, and family that I can talk to like friends. Many of them are the rocks that have held me up through some of the toughest times...the ones that stuck around when things got too messy. these are the people that mean every bit of everything to me. Some you will hear from on occasion...or hear about at least. But let me just go ahead and introduce the main characters:

The Nerdy Boy:

(aka: Jason) 

The only boy in the world who could break down all the walls and find the way to the center of my heart. He has saint like patience in dealing with the insanity that comes with living with 3 girls. He loves me regardless of my many flaws and supports me through all of my crazy dreams and ambitions. You can also find him right next to me at a cheer competition or sweeping up mounds of glitter (which he HATES) after a random crafting session. He has, without fail, taken on the role of "step dad" to my girls and found the perfect balance between friend and parent that comes with the very big responsibility of being a step parent. He's the best kind of dad out there...the type that didn't have to be one, but chose to be. He loves scifi and video games, hes determined to turn me in to a golf widow, and if it were up to him, every inch of my home would be "wired for automation" and hooked up to some kind of remote. He's finishing grad school right now and works in a room that looks like NASA...if you ask me what he does for a living, all I can say is "uhhh something with computers? and networks?" (I'm sure he is rolling his eyes at me while reading this) He would eat steaks for dinner every night and loves it when he gets a chance to ask me to "make him a sandwich" he is the ultimate "internet hipster" no matter how quickly I think I have "found" something funny/cool/exciting that exists on the web...he has already seen 2 years ago ;) He's just the best. and he's all mine :)

The Big One:

(aka: Samantha Paige)

 My mini me. at this writing she is 7...and about to finish first grade...but acts more and more like a 14 year old. She has been in competitive cheerleading for 3 years now and has just decided to get in to competitive dance as well (Thank you Dance Moms on lifetime.............) she changes her mind on a daily basis if her favorite thing is peace signs or skulls and per her own words she has told me that when she grows up she is going to be "an art teacher who owns their own cheer gym..." the girl dreams big :) She has constant restless energy like me, but likes to expend it on "projects" rather than "just playing" She loves to be on stage and the star of the show. She is my best big helper and has tons of patience when it comes to dealing with her little sister :)

The Little One: 

(aka: Skylar Jade)

 A curly headed ball of never ending energy. As of right now she is the quintessential 2 1/2 year old terror. This child is my karmic payback from all those years of bragging about what a great baby/toddler/preschooler Samantha was. She is sneaky and smart and can get in to/out of just about anything. She wants to be JUST like her sister (so much so that we are having to re-teach her how to count, since she now things the numbers go "5,6,7,8,1,2,3"...........thanks cheerleading LOL) she loves her "foofoo" (pacifier) and her lamby. She loves to play with babies, jump on the trampoline and run around the house pretending to be a dinosaur :)

 My Misfits <3

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Hey! Don't I know you?!

I don't you? ;)

You might have seen me in my earliest stages of blogging when I was using my business name as my blogging handle...there are still some great posts on my old blog (including the often pinned MOMager)

(S3 Events and Design is still open for business as my Home Based Project Management & Events company. Feel free to contact us if you are in the DFW metroplex and are in need of Interior design, Home Organization, Project Management Services, Home Staging, Relocation assistance, Personal Concierge or Event planning and Management help)

Or you might have even seen me at my other blog that is more focused on Home and Family life...This blog has some great oldies (including my cheery cheese cake dip and DIY Ruffle Tree Skirt) This Blog will remain open and will be updated frequently ... I'll do my best to at least link my posts between the two blogs!

******EDIT****** The above blogs will remain open but all posting in regards to Shelly the MOMager and S3 Events and Design will be done on THIS get stick around :) 

And finally you might ACTUALLY know me...If you don't allow me to introduce myself...

Hi! I'm Shelly....I'm a "young" mom from a suburb in the DFW metroplex...I am enjoying my "take two" shot on life....In the last 3 years I have seperated from my ex husband...found out I was pregnant with my sweet little put on bed rest...lost my job...went crazy (ok not really but find me a sane person who is constantly on the go, confined to bed for 6 weeks....oh ya, and throw in a little insomnia for good measure) ... had my second premature baby after an emergency a divorce...gave my full heart over to the nerdy boy of my dreams...moved out of my first home...moved in to a tiny 2nd story apartment...moved in to the rental house that stole my heart...spent 2 years coaching recreational cheerleading to 5-7 year old girls....and then finally made it here. Where I am on the brink of changing my world all over again with a new house for our little family. But this time is different...Its one can take it away from us...tell us we have to leave...or tell us "no you can't do that" its All Ours and I couldn't be happier.

On a less deep note: I love margaritas and Fountain drinks from QT with extra crushed Ice, I love cheep wine and good mexican food. My style is kind of modern traditional? with a little french hotel feel? Idk...I like what I like and it usually looks pretty good when my ideas come out to reality! I have ADD and GAD...its a delightful combination. I was a "young mom" having my oldest just a couple months after I turned 20. I am an only child. I love to travel. I am dreadfully terrified of snakes and big dogs. I hate mushrooms. I love good music...I don't care if its red dirt country, dub step or 80's rock...if its good, its good. I'm a true blue Crazy Texas Cheer Mom, I have served as the "room mom" for Samantha since she was in "pre k-3" (thats 4 years of service so far) and just this past year for Skylar in her MDO program. I would leave my own nerdy boy for Dr. Sheldon Cooper (Jim Parsons) from Big Bang Theory in a heart beat. I'm a pinterest addict. I hate talking on the phone but i'll text all day long. I'm far from perfect, not even close to normal... I'm just...Me...Simply, Shelly. 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

So We Bought A House...

We made the jump....signed on the dotted line....gave them all our money...and signed off to 30 years of financial imprisonment ;) 

Welcome to the blog that is going to chronical life as newbie DIYers in our new home....I tend to like to name houses...this one is "The Oxford Place" house...and I find it to be very fitting :)

You with most things in has natural beauty...but is a bit stuck in previous...gaudy...times....sometimes you need to give it a little home based Botox ;) a little love......and a little less brass. The bones are great, the personality shines...she just needs a make over.

We are still in the final stages of underwriting/closing/ending the lease in our previous home and won't actually be in the Oxford Place House until mid May.

But because I'm kinda crazy...I have taken it upon me to give the kitchen its first injection of restoration and filler ;)                     

(of come on...who doesn't love a little plastic surgery punnery!)

Now keep in mind...this is just minimal work to make the existing surface look a little fresher...the full on face lift will come a couple years down the line.

Keep a look out for my plans for the kitchen, time line, and some before and after pictures!

I hope you enjoy following us as we take a traditional Texas suburban brick home...and turn it in to the house of our dreams

Welcome to the Oxford Place Diaries