Sunday, January 25, 2009

New Decorations

After taking down all of my Christmas decor, I realized that the living room needed some help. This story actually goes back a little, so I'll have to back up and start at the beginning. A little less than a year ago, Wyatt and I decided to pull up the carpet and put down wood flooring. Well, we found a nice little surprise when we pulled up the carpet - REAL wood floors!!! The little project that was supposed to last a day or so wound up lasting several months. Of course, I wasn't here for most of it because I was in St. Louis for training and reserve. These are the only "before" pictures I could find, so try to look around the wedding flower mess!
Notice the lovely wood paneling....We looked on the internet and asked some of Wyatt's buddies about how to refinish wood floors. We felt pretty confident we could do it after our research. So, we headed to Lowe's to rent the drum sander. Of course, we first had to pull about a bazillion nails and staples out of the floor from where they had put the carpet down (I never want to see another nail or staple again!).

So, Wyatt started sanding the floor. You have to do it 3 different times, each time with a different grade of sand paper. We were making really good progress and were really excited about how our floors were going to be so beautiful.

We fianlly got to the stain... We both really like the darker stain, so that's what we got. We put the stain down (later learned there is a much easier way) and waited a day or two for it to dry. In the mean time, we would have to climb through a window and walk around to the garage to get from one end of the house to the other, since the living room separates the kitchen and garage from the bedrooms and bathroom. That was pretty interesting. Without making this long and drawn out, I'll just shorten the story to say that we (actually mostly Wyatt) had to redo the living room several times. Each time he would learn something new or a better way to do it to make it look better. That also includes the time he tripped over an almost full can of stain and sent the stain flying EVERYWHERE!!! Of course, it wasn't the smartest thing to do he biggest, most important room of the house first, but we didn't think about that at the time. Unfortunately, we only got pictures of the first attempt at staining the floor because I wasn't here for some of the other times and then just forgot to take pictures the other times.
Several cans of paint and polyurethane and several rentings of the sander later, the living room was finished... FINALLY!!!! We decided that we should paint the walls and replace the trim while we were at it. So, we painted the walls a beautiful coffee color after removing the half wall of ugly paneling and put new trim around the bottom. We also did the wood floor in the hallway and the office. We repainted the office green and put new trim in there as well. We decided that we needed to take a break before conquering the bedrooms. We managed to get everything moved back in like a week or so before the wedding. Whew!!! Talk about some stress - trying to get things ready for the wedding and trying to get the house finished!!!
Anyways, I tell that story because we didn't have anything on the walls in the living room after taking everything down to paint, or very much other decorations for that matter. So, over the past several weeks I've been trying to decide what to put in the place of all my Christmas stuff. About a month before Christmas, we found a painting on ebay we wanted to hang behind the couch. So, we ordered it and got it hung just in time for Cari, Calloway, Brianna, and Lauren's visit the weekend before Chrismas.
We had also been looking for a big clock to hang on the wall, but hadn't found one we really liked. Well, about a week and a half ago, I was at Hobby Lobby just to see if they had any Christmas stuff left, and I saw this:
Perfect!!! Of course, I then had to look at the home accents that were 66% off. After going up and down the aisles a few times, I realized that I needed help. See, I've never really been good at this decorating thing. I either try to make things too symmetrical, too matching, or something. So, I called none other than my momma. I told her some of the things I had found and was asking her opinion. She gave me a few ideas but it was hard not being able to see exactly what I was talking about. So, to solve that problem I just took pictures of some of the items with my phone and emailed them to her. Then I called her back to see what she thought. We did this at least 3 or 4 times if not more. I was getting some funny looks from the people in Hobby Lobby, but that's ok. I think we were on and off the phone for around 2 hours! We decided on the items I should get to take home and play with. It was also on this trip I realized Hobby Lobby's carts aren't nearly big enough! After spending an arm and a leg, thanks to my mom, I left with all my goodies and headed home to play. Over the next couple of days, mom and I decided that she should come for a visit and bring a few things that she had for me and help decorate. So, she came over on Thursday evening and we went to Hobby Lobby Friday morning, not that my bank account could handle another trip!!! We finally managed to get the living room mostly decorated and I love it! Thanks mom for all of your help (including spending my money, which I am capable of doing on my own!!). Here are some pictures of the finished product.
End tables:

Wall where the paneling was:
My beautiful curtains made by my wonderful mom!!!!

Sorry this post has been so long.... maybe it makes up for being so long since I've posted?! Well, I can't believe the weekend is over, but I hope everyone has a wonderful week!