Jack Logan

It's a boy!!!  Welcome to the world, Jack Logan Reyna!  Born 6 weeks early on October 22, 2012.  5.5 pounds, 18.7 inches long.  Mommy's little escape artist <3


T-Minus Ten Days to The Big Move

Or rather, ten days until we finally start sleeping at the new place, no matter what!  In reality, there's no way we can actually get everything moved in 10 days, but the house we're living in now is owned by Den's family, so there's no rush to get 100% packed and moved in such a short time.  We have wiggle room to only take what we need/love from the old place and then spend some time donating/selling/throwing away all the stuff we don't want/need/love.  Easier said than done.  Especially when this is what the new place currently looks like.

Master Bedroom:  At least there's a mattress.  And boxes everywhere! I'm pretty sure we're just going to have to get used to living with boxes everywhere for a while.

The Nursery:
Not as many boxes, but an armoire that I'm not too fond of and can't wait to get rid of, oh and doesn't fit in the space at all.

The Kitchen:
Or at least the room where the kitchen will be.  That's right, we still don't have a kitchen.  But I'm not too worried about that.  We have a fridge and a microwave.  I can get by on just those two appliances for quite some time.  I'm pretty sure once we start sleeping at the new place, the kitchen is going to come together pretty quickly.  I have to say I like the empty room better than the awful layout that was here when we bought the place.  We have figured out the layout for the kitchen when we put it back together and I'll write up a post about that soon.

The Butler's Office:
The chandelier needs to come out completely because of bad wiring and we need to figure out another lighting alternative.  But at least the walls are painted.  I'll post about that someday, too.

The Dining Room:
This room has been a general dumping ground for all things construction lately.  It needs to be cleared out so I can move furniture in.  And this is where our fridge has been living.

The Living Room:
This room has also been a general construction dumping ground.  It's also where our hand-me-down front loader washer/dryer have been living until we put them in the kitchen.  We've moved our love seat in for now, but have such a long way to go.

The Guest Room/Craft Room/Massage Studio:
Yes, our kitchen counter and sink have been living in this room lately.  And it's where we've put all the baby swag we've been gifted over the past couple of months.  I have absolutely no idea where all this baby stuff is going to go, but I'm sure I'll figure it out.  I also assume it's where all the boxes will land when they first get here and then I can disperse them.

So that's pretty much where things stand at the new house right now.  I feel a little panicked about getting enough done before the baby gets here.  If I can get the bedroom and nursery set up, I think I'll be okay.  Everything else can wait.

Mom came to visit this weekend, too, and has done so much to get the old place packed.  I've reached the point in my pregnancy where I'm pretty much worthless to get anything done.  I tried packing boxes, but my belly keeps getting in the way!  And I can pretty much forget about lifting anything at this point.  So Mom came to the rescue, again!  Now I just need to find someone to move all this stuff!!!


Painting Stripes in the Nursery - The Project That Nearly Killed Me

I think I may finally be ready to write about the motivation killing project that was painting stripes in the nursery...all.by.myself.  To say the process was traumatic is both an understatement and a total exaggeration.  It wasn't all that hard to do the stripes, but they took forever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and ever.....until I thought my head would explode.  The process was very straight forward and simple, but the execution was mind numbingly tedious.  I tried to maintain my sanity by repeating my mantra of "slow and steady, slow and steady" but after a while I was fighting maniacal laughter.

Let's begin at the beginning.  As soon as we found out I was pregnant, I knew I wanted to do the nursery in a circus theme.  Dennis takes me to the circus every year for my birthday (because he's awesome!) so it seemed a fitting theme, plus it's gender neutral.  We don't want the nursery to be cartoon circus, though.  We're going more for a vintage, turn of the century circus aesthetic.  After all, the nursery isn't really for the baby, it's for the grown-ups.  When The Critter is old enough to decide what they like, then they can pick how they want the room decorated.

see, I told you he's awesome

What could possibly be more circus like than stripped walls?  Nothing, I tell you.  Nothing!  So it was settled.  Stripes in the nursery.  I briefly considered using fabric on the walls to create an actual tent in the room, but then decided that wouldn't be a good idea when the baby gets mobile and can pull on stuff.  Next best thing?  Paint.

Now, I've never painted stripes on anything before, but how hard could it be?  I see striped walls all over the internet, and if those people can do it, then so can I.  I consulted with my good friend, Google, and watched several You Tube videos and figured I had the process down pat.  I'm not going to go into the technical side of striping a wall in this post; if anyone wants me to write a how-to, I'll gladly do it, but that's not exactly what this post is about.  Off to Home Depot for supplies!

Dennis and I decided to do red and white stripes, and then I had the grand idea to add gold glitter pinstripes to the red stripes.  I never know when to say when.  We picked Navajo White in Behr Premium Plus Eggshell No-VOC Enamel paint for the white stripes; it has a really nice antique off white, almost tea stained color.  For the red, we chose Antique Ruby, also in Behr Eggshell.  The gold pinstripes called for Martha Stewart's Gold Dust Glitter Paint.  I also picked up a small level and a yardstick so I could measure and mark the stripes.  This may have been the worst decision I made in this entire process.  All the online resources I consulted with said to use a laser level for ease and accuracy.  I didn't want to spend the money on a laser level.  How often would I really need a laser lever?  Never.  So I didn't get a laser level.  Silly me. Silly, silly me.  Oh, I almost forgot.  I also got painter's tape.  Lots and lots of painter's tape.  Not using Frog Tape was my second worst decision.  More on that later, for now, on to painting.

One evening after work, I painted the off white base color.  I didn't have high hopes for decent coverage of even a light colored paint based on my previous experience, but I was happily surprised with the even coverage of just one coat.  Of course, the existing beige paint was a similar color to the off white I was painting, but only having to paint once was way better than twice.  I felt ahead of the game!  I was excited to tape and paint the stripes the next day.  I was certain I could get all the stripes measured, marked, taped, and painted in one long day's work.  I was so optimistic.  If only I knew what madness was to follow.  Ignorance is bliss.

The next morning I got up early and felt so motivated and excited to have an entire day to work on the nursery.  I knew I would leave that evening with stripes on the walls.  I was ready to go!  I headed straight over to the new place and hit my first road block:  measuring and marking.  How wide should my stripes be?  Should the white and red stripes be the same size, or should one color be wider than the other?  Which color should be wider?  How many stripes should go on each wall?  Should I measure each wall separately and hope the stripes come out evenly, or should I measure all the way around the room and hope they end up evenly?  I was perplexed.  I felt like I had already asked myself these questions, and I had, I just hadn't come up with any answers yet.  I got out pen and paper, measured the walls, and began sketching and trying to do math.  I got all wrapped up in my head and made things way more complicated than they needed to be.  I was frustrated, angry, and I wasted over an hour of time.  Finally, I settled on a layout that roughly fit on all four walls evenly and got started measuring.  Slow and steady.  Slow and steady.

This is where things got really tedious and mind numbing.  I didn't have a laser level, like I should have.  And Dennis was at work, so I was flying solo on this project.  I had to measure at the top of the wall, at the middle of the wall, and at the bottom of the wall, then take the level and yardstick and try to connect the dots  in a straight line.  I'd climb up, climb down, climb up, and climb down, just for one line.  And it took a lot of precision with that tiny level to keep the lines straight, not to mention the fact that nothing is square in the whole house, which made for some interesting problems trying to line things up.  Slow and steady.  Slow and steady, I kept telling myself, through gritted teeth.  No matter how frustrating.  I was holding onto that mantra for dear life.

After doing one wall, my back hurt, my shoulders hurt, my hips hurt, my legs hurt, my feet hurt, and I had a headache from furrowing my brow in concentration.  And I was sweating like a pig; our central A/C still hadn't been fixed and it was H-O-T!!!  I would've killed for a laser level at this point, and I'm not exactly sure why I didn't just go back to Home Depot and buy one.  It would've solved so many problems.  I think the heat was keeping me from thinking clearly.  But I was still determined to get this project done!!!  I forged ahead and got the other three walls done, sans laser level.  Slow and steady; slow and friggin steady.  Time for a much needed lunch break, after who know how many hours of work.

After lunch, I came back and began taping off all the lines I had drawn on the walls.  Again, I was sure this process was going to go fast and I'd still be able to paint that day.  I was holding onto a dream.  Cue maniacal laughter.  Taping wasn't quite as bad as measuring and marking, but it certainly felt like it.  My spirit hadn't been totally crushed, yet.  I don't know if it was the heat and humidity, or the fact that I was a sweaty beast, or the fact that the base coat of paint wasn't quite 24 hours old, but the painter's tape just did not want to stay on the walls.  It would take me 3 or 4 tries to get the tape to stick at the ceiling, and then as I worked my way down the line to the floor, the edges of the tape wouldn't stay tacked all the way down.  I would press and rub along the edges repeatedly to no avail.  I even ended up giving myself blisters on my fingertips from the friction of rubbing the tape.  I tried using an old gym ID of mine to seal the edges.  I tried using a hand towel to reduce the friction on my fingers.  Nothing really worked.  But I kept on taping.  SLOW AND STEADY!  SLOW AND STEADY!!!  Grrrrrrrrrrrrr.

After hours and hours of taping, I decided I'd had enough.  There was no way I was going to get any red paint on those walls after that.  I was ready to fall down right where I was, in a fit of crazed laughter and hot, angry tears.  But at least the taping was done.

A few days later I was finally able to get to the red paint.  After all that measuring, marking, and taping, I was tempted to just leave the painter's tape on the walls and call it striped, but I already had the red paint on hand, and hated to see it go to waste.  One thing you should know about red paint, it that's is a fickle, fickle color to paint.  It never covers evenly, is always streaky, and takes at least 3 coats to look decent.  First thing was cutting in around the ceiling, baseboards, and windows.

Next, I started rolling, and rolling, and rolling.  I used a 4 inch roller and it really worked very well.  I started in one corner and painted my way around the room.  By the time I got back to where I started, the paint was dry enough for me to add a second, and then a third coat of paint.  I can't remember if I did three or four coats of paint, but I went around the room enough times to get dizzy.  The whole process wasn't terribly tedious and went much faster than I anticipated.  It almost left me with hope that the project was back on track.

first coat; you can really see the uneven coverage of the red 
multiple coats; nice even coverage--finally

I was really nervous about pulling off all the tape after finally getting the stripes all painted.  The walls are textured, and I was worried about paint bleeding under the tape, especially since the tape didn't seem to stick all that well in the first place.  I really regret not buying that Frog Tape!!!  I smoothed down each piece of tape before I painted, but wasn't sure if that was going to be good enough to maintain a smooth, even line.  In the pictures, the lines look nice and crisp, but I definitely had paint bleed under the paint.  I was so disappointed!!!!!  But there was no way I was going to start this project over again.  I told myself that it wasn't so bad and that it added to the vintage feel of the room.

Now, it may look like I was done with my little wall stripes experiment, but I never know when to say when, and I was determined to add those gold glitter pinstripes to all the red stripes.  I had obviously not learned my lesson at all.  Back to Home Depot for more tape.  And did I get Frog Tape this time?  I'll give you three guesses and the first two don't count.  No, I did not get Frog Tape.  Duh, I don't learn lessons very well.

And so I taped.  And taped.  And taped, well into the night.  This time I had to tape twice as much because each red stripe got two gold stripes.  Slow and steady, slow and steady.  By the time I got done taping, I was so crazed that I was determined to get that glitter on the walls.  I was afraid if I stopped I would never get back to it.

Martha Stewart lies.  The example of the color of paint on the lid of the container, and even what the paint looks like in the container is NOTHING like how it actually looks on the walls.  NOTHING!!!  I started one pinstripe and was so shocked at how the glitter didn't show up.  At all.  I was flabbergasted.

what it was supposed to look like
what it actually looked like.  see the glitter?  Yeah?  Me neither.
I threw down my paint brush in disgust and decided to just go home.  Dennis and I brainstormed other ways to get gold glitter on the walls, and decided that since I had already bought the Martha Stewart stuff I would try again with a thicker application, and multiple coats if necessary.  This really pushed me over the edge of insanity.  I just wanted anything in this room to go simply and easily.  The next day, I gritted my teeth, and started painting thick layers of gold paint.  I can't remember how many coats it took me.  Four?  Five?  Too many, that's for sure, but I finally got the coverage I was hoping for.  I was so frustrated/tired/demoralized/over this project that by the time I was actually finished with the glitter, I hardly cared anymore.  But at least I was done!!!


Anniversary 2.0

Dennis and I just celebrated our 2nd wedding anniversary.  Each year we take a picture of ourselves holding a picture of us from the previous year.  I got the idea on Pinterest.  Our first anniversary we were holding a photo from our wedding and on this anniversary we were holding the photo from our first anniversary.  Next year, we'll hold the photo we took yesterday.  I think you get the idea.  Here's to forever!!!



Installing the Kitchen Floor - A Photo Timeline

The floors come up, the floors go down, the floors come up again, and the floors go back down, or something like that.  A few days after we ripped up the ugly ceramic tiles that were living in our kitchen, we finally started laying down our beautiful new cherry laminate floor.  And we were going full steam ahead, despite all the warnings we had gotten from friends and family about how indestructible laminate flooring is to everything except water.  We had gotten a great deal on it, and had already bought it, so down it was going!

Dennis started the putting them in one day after work (with the help of Pigger and Butt-Naked), and although it's super easy work and we could've gotten it all done in a Sunday afternoon, we went turtle speed on this project to make 100% certain everything went according to plan.  And after all, it's the turtle that won the race; slow and steady, my friends, slow and steady.

A couple of days after Dennis started on the floors, his mom came over to help.  Before they started in on the floors, there were a couple of pieces of drywall that needed to go in; they had to be ripped out in the first place due to shoddy workmanship done by whoever put in the kitchen cabinets.  At least it was an easy fix!

Hey!  What's going on in there?!?

Not long after they got the drywall put in, I joined them and got in on the floor action!  Pigger helped, too, and for those of you worried that I've been working too much while pregnant, don't worry!  I promise I go slow, don't overexert myself, and I always rest when I feel like resting!

I can sleep anywhere

After a good night's sleep (at home, in my bed), Dennis and I headed back over to the new place to finish up the last bit of flooring.  Our friends, Lynn and Jenny, stopped by to see the progress, and it was a good thing, too.  Dennis had a horrible headache and luckily, Jenny had some medicine with her.  She even got in on helping out with some of the floors.  I was happy to sit back and watch!  Somehow I didn't take any pictures of Jenny working.  Oh well, maybe I was napping again.  Poor Butt-Naked got a sympathy headache, so Pigger had to comfort him.

Finally, we were done!  We did a happy dance, cleaned up, and went home.  All was well in the world....until the next day.  When I got this phone call from Dennis:

D:  .....are you sitting down, Honey?
J:  Yes.
D:  I don't know how to say this...
J:  Say what?  (I'm freaking out at this point thinking the worst possible things)
D:  The kitchen floors got wet last night.
J:  Ummm, what did you just say?
D:  When I went over to the new place this morning on the way to work, the kitchen floors were wet.
J.  What do you mean wet?  We put down plastic.  What do you mean wet?!!?  How???  Wet???  What?!?
D:  Well, there was a big puddle of water on the floor and it got under the plastic.  I think the upstairs neighbors did laundry last night, and when their washer drained, it backflowed into our kitchen.
J:  ...
D:  I mopped up all the water, but it still ruined the floors.
J:  Ruined?
D:  Well, not ruined, but damaged.  If the floors were like this when we first looked at the place we probably wouldn't even notice or care, but we'll definitely notice this every time we walk into the kitchen for as long as we live here.  We need to redo the floors.  I'll start tonight when I get off work.
J:  ...

So we had less than 24 hours of beautiful floors.  I met Dennis at the house when I got off work, and things were much better than I expected them to be.  Luckily (?) the puddle was on the side of the room where the last rows of flooring went down, making un-installing them much easier.  Dennis had already removed the damaged pieces of laminate - all 7 of them.  Yes, only 7 pieces of laminate got damaged.  And as we replaced the damaged pieces, only 2 of them needed to be cut to size.  Needless to say, the work went really fast.  When Dennis showed me the damaged pieces, I could barely tell that there was anything wrong with them.  The edges had barely gotten warped.  Barely.

Finally, we finished the repairs, plugged all the pipes so we wouldn't have a repeat puddle, and put down new plastic.  New floors, complete.  All except for sealing them.  We still need to figure out how to do that.  At least we still have extra laminate if something horrible happens.
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