Kids’ Room Update

As of this week, we’re about 10 weeks away from meeting our newest family member. There is still much to do to be totally ready. Next weekend, we’ll start organizing the bins of baby and toddler stuff in the basement. So far, we’ve cleared out a couple of dresser drawers for diapers and clothes. We’ll need to get creative to find storage for the blankets, sheets, etc. It involves under bed storage, but our weekend trip to Ikea was a fail in regards to that. We couldn’t even agree on a covered trash pail. However, we were successful in finding a light shade solution for the baby’s room. My mom was in town, and not feeling fierce, so she stayed home with Estelle while David and I had a hot date at Ikea, Target, and the grocery store. For us carless folks, borrowing a car to run these errands is rather luxurious. Thanks, Tess!

The child-free Ikea time gave our brains a chance to problem solve. We wanted a cheap light shade for the ceiling light in the baby’s room. We also didn’t want a whole new fixture, nor did we really want to spray paint the existing fixture to make it look better. We’re lazy, I suppose, or realistic working folks who don’t want to spend their free time doing minor electric work. I will give credit to David for thinking we could make this $10 Ikea pendant shade work by turning it upside down and just letting it sit on the bulb. In true team effort style, I reaffirmed his idea and picked the stripes. The shade is wide enough to cover most of the fixture we weren’t so thrilled about. The abstract stripes add a bit of color. I had wanted to add some turquoise to the room over the next few weeks. We love it! Win.

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This room is notoriously difficult to photograph. I tried white balancing with the camera and photoshop. It’s narrow and windowless, which might explain a lot. There’s not really a great time of day to shoot this room, so we would need professional grade lighting. That’s not happening! Here are some other quick snapshots of the baby’s side of the room. The first is a view from the hall of what will be the diaper changing station. The second is a view of the shared bookcases, most of our kid books are kept here.

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I moved some wall art around the other week. However, I have not patched any of the holes I left behind. Add that to the to-do list! Here are some most recent views of Estelle’s room. This room gets great morning light, but I took these photos in the afternoon.

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I think the view below was mistakenly left off of my last tour of Estelle’s room. It’s her bed side table and doll bed. The doll bed might be made over as a DIY gift for someone’s upcoming birthday! Shhhh.

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I will be back with another update when things are a little more finished. Here’s hoping we’ll get a nice sunny morning to take some decent photos next time. Also, this might be a good time to put a pre-baby to-do list in writing:

  • Organize baby and toddler clothes, toys, gear
  • Wash/wipe down baby clothes, car seat cushions, travel crib fabric, bouncy seat
  • Get disposable diapers, wipes, and activate cloth diaper service
  • New diaper changing pad for dresser
  • Small white trash bin with lid
  • Patch wall holes
  • New gender neutral crib skirt, possibly graphic/striped turquoise and white
  • Make a gold safari baby mobile to hang over changing table
  • Order some Japanese paper balloons (kamifusen) for over the crib
  • Set up a bassinet, changing surface, and nursing station in our bedroom
  • Pack a hospital bag

Wish us luck! I also have a couple of sewing projects to accomplish before Miss E’s fourth birthday in mid-April.

Stephanie

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Estelle Room Update

It’s been awhile since I have posted about the progress on the kids’ room(s). Technically, it is one room with a doorless doorway that separates two small rooms. Each space is defined enough to have it’s own look. Estelle’s current room was her former nursery, and we haven’t moved any of the wall hangings to accomodate the new set up. Although, that shuffle will probably just be limited to the non-plaster wall opposite her bed to make touch ups easier. We’re not going too crazy with the redecorating this time. We will likely do some room shuffling again in the next 2-3 years with the hope of squeezing two single beds into one room and adding a sofa bed for guests in the other room…some way, some how.

Anyways, on with the short tour (it’s a small room).

DSC_0085I think we’ve only made two changes since our last post, the addition of the net canopy and the kid’s coat rack as hanging storage. Both are from IKEA. We’ve done some minor rearranging of bins, baskets, and toys. Those seem to be ever-changing.

DSC_0078The drawing and silhouette below are some of my favorite finds from David’s Grandmom’s house. We need to move them over a bit.  Even Estelle acknowledges that they get in the way of her coat rack.

DSC_0091The kitty mobile below has been in the room since Estelle was a wee baby. Sometimes, we name the cats and tell stories about them before bed. They may get moved again if I ever finish some pom-poms for the canopy. You can find this mobile and many more mobile designs from Salty and Sweet on Etsy.

DSC_0090There’s nothing too remarkable about the area around the shallow shelves. The two vintage suitcases hold her dress-up clothes. We may need to add to the case collection as she adds to her dress-up collection.

DSC_0086Although the house was empty while I was taking these photos, Lola kept trying to photo bomb my efforts. She likes the net canopy almost as much as Estelle!

DSC_0077One quick photo of the baby’s room. It’s still purple, and will remain that way. I have slowly been trying to take away the more girlie things in case we bring home a little boy. The crib is nearly ready, I just need to empty out that pile of Estelle’s outgrown clothes. There’s still much to do to get ready for baby, but it mostly involves us bringing stuff up from the basement, sorting it, and giving it a good wash.

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Thanks for joining us on the tour! Please ask if you see something you like, and you want to know where to get it. I will do my best, the rooms are a good mix of new and vintage.

Stephanie

‘Tis the Season

I had high hopes of posting a Thanksgiving recap, but <insert usual tired pregnant working mom excuse here>.

I’m 16 weeks pregnant today (16 out of 40), and feeling pretty good…increased hearing loss and annoying cough aside. I’m getting my hearing checked this Friday, but I already had a mild type of genetic hearing loss (otosclerosis) that is prone to changes from hormones. It just suddenly worsened last week, to the point where I cannot hear the majority of what people say to me. Extremely frustrating and humbling. Despite telling most everyone I speak with in person, some people still insist on trying to tell me secrets at a whisper. On a lighter note, it’s a great time to whisper behind my back. In the grand scheme of things, hearing loss is minor…it was bound to happen anyways!

Moving on, to Thanksgiving. We made quite the road trip from Philadelphia to the Charlotte, NC area to visit my grandmother, extended family, and friends. We had two overnight stop overs in Norfolk, VA. It was fun, we ate a lot, and we visited with family and friends we so rarely get to see. All of that was well worth the cramped car space.

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That was me and Estelle making grumpy faces in the back seat after over 4 hours in the car. My shoulder was wedged behind her car seat. It was all worth it! We got all of my mom’s side of the family together for one great big family photo. It was the end of a long, over-stimulated day for one little 3.5-year-old. She agreed to be in the photo, but refused to face the camera. Ah, memories!

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Family photo by my cousin, Erin, at A Perfect Day Photography

I was waiting until December to fully embrace the Christmas season. Estelle and I celebrated a few hours early by watching A Sesame Street Christmas Carol AND White Christmas last Friday. She keeps requesting more White Christmas, her favorite parts are the “Sisters, Sisters” number (obviously) and when Phil pretends to break his leg (random).

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This past weekend was full of cookie baking and celebrating a joint birthday party with the Feasters. Check out the goodies, I hope to post about the sugar cookies soon! I have a yummy recipe (or two) to pass along.

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We came home Sunday afternoon, and jumped right into decking the halls. Our first task was to build a tree. Say what?! Oh yeah, in addition to hearing loss and a cough, I also have allergies. I never had them before moving to Philly, and they only seem to worsen when I have kids. I just couldn’t handle a tree this year, and I love a real tree. Getting an artificial tree crossed my mind, but they are not cheap! I searched Pinterest for alternative Christmas trees, and came up with a couple of good ideas. I will be the first to admit that the wood tree was not our brainchild! You can even buy mini versions of a wooden tree via Wood & Wool Stool. I ran the idea by David, and he seemed game. We ended up using scrap wood from our basement, and only needed to buy some screws. David just eyeballed the placement and width of each “branch”. Precious and perfect isn’t our game. Do not be fooled into thinking we actually have our gifts purchased and wrapped! Those are from my mom, for our advent calendar…she filled it for us this year. Here is the tree result, see below for some in-process photos.

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Estelle telling David what he needs to do
 
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The act of eyeballing it
 
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Final lay out, pre-cut
 
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Anchors away!
 
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Estelle as quality control, please note the floor ledge I speak of below.
 

We used an existing screw hole to insert an plaster anchor, eye hook, and tie the top of the tree to the wall. Hooray for being slackers and never filling in the hole! David also attached a strip of wood to the base of the tree, and screwed a ledge onto our floor. The screws go in between floor boards to minimize floor damage. The floor ledge prevents the base of the tree from sliding out. All in all, it’s secure enough for our needs. That means we know our kid won’t climb on it, but that statement does not apply to all kids.

We made some other holiday touches around the house, some of them are pictured below. This year was the first year we put lights in the window. I love the glow behind the shades!

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I hope you all are finding time to enjoy the holiday season. I’m trying to keep perspective, and not get stressed about shopping and having a clean house…key word is TRYING.

Stephanie

P.S. – As a thank you for putting up with that long-winded post, you get to see how big and handsome my little nephew is getting to be! One of his other aunties got him the bib, but all aunties know Santa, of course!

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Poang Thang

It’s time to show some Poang love! I know Poang chairs get a bad rap on the home decor scene. They are fairly inexpensive and everywhere. Although, aside from the price, they are not too different than those Eames rockers (real or fake) that I see in every nursery on Apartment Therapy! We have a Poang, it has been in the family for close to 8 years, and it kept me comfortable during many hours of breastfeeding. Gliders sure are nice for that purpose, but they are often huge and very expensive. While it would be nice to find the perfect petite upholstered rocking arm chair for the corner of our bedroom, it will take me years to find the right piece. In the meantime, I’ll have another mouth to feed for hours on end next year. It was time to work with what we already have!

The navy blue fabric on our original Poang was looking faded and covered in cat fur. Way back in September, I decided that we had nothing to lose by a little experimentation, so I stripped off the cover and bleached that bad boy. I soaked half of it it for hours and hours, maybe too many hours. I put it back in the washer mid-way through bleaching because I had to take an extended bleach break. It came out of the washer ripped. The bleach destroyed the weave structure! I know textiles well enough, and I knew that was a possibility…oh well.

Since I was sort of chair hunting, I was in no immediate hurry to replace the now ruined cushion cover. I used a blanket to cover up the gross foam innards as a temporary solution. The blanket was covered in cat fur in no time!

We found ourselves at Ikea a couple weeks ago with a horrible mess of a 3-year-old. We were looking at new Poang cushions. The cheap ones were tempting, but the colors and quality were limited. I went for the next tier fabric cushion in brown, with the logic that I will be spending plenty of time planted on that cushion. David hastily decided that brown leather would be an even better choice due to cat fur, despite the significantly higher price tag. I wasn’t going to argue…that’s what I really wanted anyways!

I’m liking the new brown leather cushions. It makes the Poang look a little more grown up, kind of like the 30-somethings we are! In any case, it will do just fine until the most perfect chair comes along.

We made some other Ikea purchases two weekends ago too, but I will have to share those another time. A few minutes ago, I fell asleep at the keyboard. Yikes! Have you made any fun Ikea purchases recently? Do you also love things that the cool kids don’t?

Have a happy week,

Stephanie

Eleven Reasons for a Room Switch

Estelle and I left Philly on Saturday. We are currently stuck in sunny Florida with a cute newborn and great family. Darn! Lola and Estelle’s stuffed animals are “helping” David weather the storm. All is well in Philly, or so I am told. Our block still has power, which is not surprising given the density of buildings and lack of trees. Our original flight home was supposed to be on Tuesday, but I changed it to Thursday to give Philly some time to get back on track, literally because we need to take the train home from the airport!

David has been busy switching rooms, hanging out, watching football, working from home, texting me photos of our beach haunts under water, and clearing out the fridge. I think he misses us crazy girls…maybe?

So yeah, what’s that about switching rooms? Even though we had not even completed the finishing touches on Estelle’s room, we decided to move her to the back room. Why?!?

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You saw that right! We are adding a tiny and loud human to the mix in May, and the semi-shared room set up will temporarily work much better this way. Best to do it now, so Estelle doesn’t feel like she’s getting the boot to a smaller, less purple room. Don’t worry, we plan to lavish her with a cool bed tent/canopy and a dream light!

Here is what we have so far…photos by David. Tweaks will probably be made over the next 7 months!

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Are we finding out the gender this time? No! David has convinced me to be surprised. Will we possibly put a boy in a purple room? Yes! I think we can make it work until we are settled and ready to tackle house projects again…in 2015.

Baby Feaster’s due date is May 20, 2013. I am nearly out of the first trimester, at 11 weeks. The ultrasound is of the baby around 9 weeks. I started showing almost right away, so this is old news for the people we see most often. It took me entirely too long to come up with a way to make a digital announcement! Oh, and I’m too tired to blog most nights.

What does queenie think? Estelle insists the baby is a girl, and her name is Elizabeth. We will see how long that lasts, tonight she wanted to name it Trash Can.

It looks like we will be trick or treating in Florida. We will attempt to take a good cousins-in-costume photo! Expect another blog post this week…because that’s what happens when I don’t work most of the week.

Happy Halloween! My thoughts are most definitely with my friends and family dealing with this Frankenstorm!

Stephanie

Bedroom Reveal

Our master bedroom redo is done! And by done, I mean it’s mostly done, but we’ll probably keep tweaking it for months because that is our idea of fun. This past weekend, we hung up some art, dyed a blanket, and installed the cellular shades. As I sit here and edit the photos, I realize how not great they are. It’s quite likely because SOMEONE kept photo bombing despite my best efforts to keep her in the background (see last photo). One day soon I will take the time to do a proper house tour, and that will most definitely include better bedroom photos. I just knew all twenty of our readers were sitting at home biting their nails waiting for the final photos of our bedroom, so I couldn’t keep you all waiting.

A view of the head board shelf
 
 
See that nice clean brown blanket I dyed? Yeah, Lola gave us a hairball on it that same night. Thanks, cat!
 
 
Check out those new shades, no more paper on the windows!
 
 
A little detail of Granby Bullseye without his glaring light…the Amsterdam bike garage photo is by David.
 

Here is a final look at our to-do list, and an estimated price breakdown for each completed task:

  • Fill screw holes and sand the headboard – Headboard wood and supplies were $130
  • Install baseboard at wall patch area, install quarter round throughout the room – We already had these
  • PAINT – headboard will be white, walls will be white and Benjamin Moore Palladian Blue, trim will be white,touch up paint on trim and at edges – Benjamin Moore Natura in Palladian Blue was $60, Primer and roller pads $20, We already had the white semi-gloss trim paint by Mythic
  • Find an attractive extension cord/power strip for our lamp, it will be hidden behind the headboard
  • Buy the FJELLSE pine bed from Ikea, chop off the head board, sand, paint it white, spray paint screws – $50
  • Buy plastic bins for headboard storage
  • Move the two file cabinets down to the basement – Free man labor, thanks David
  • New window treatments, probably some inconspicuous white cellular shades – $100 for off-the-shelf blackout cellular shades by Allen + Roth at Lowes
  • Rework existing wall art and restyle the headboard contents – $10 for gesso and posterboard
  • Maybe a new duvet cover, and dye existing off-white duvet covers and blankets – idye packs are $3 each
  • We need to do something about the Ikea Poang, new cushion cover?
  • Find a couple of decorative pillows – the orange chinoiserie pillow was a gift from my Mom, but I’d like one more pillow
  • Maybe a neutral jute or striped rug, eventually

Total spent so far, $375 (rounded up) – Not too shabby for a new bed, window treatments, and paint job

BONUS PRIZE! You also get to see what else we hung up this weekend. There are no more frames on our floors upstairs, it’s a good feeling after a year of nothing on the walls. We actually had too much to hang, so some is stashed away for future switches. Not that diplomas are wall art, but they are funny when hung in bathrooms. I credit our Chicago friends, Matt and Joey, with the diploma in bathroom idea. Maybe in our next house.

 

Our upstairs hallway gained a gallery wall
 
 
Estelle’s big girl room is inching toward completion, next project is a cool headboard for her…
 
 
The animal prints were found at the Golden Nugget Flea Market in July.
 

The photo bomber seems pretty pooped, and so am I! We have fun plans for Labor Day weekend, and I hope you all do too. We will surely have good material for a blog post next week, or you can stay tuned via Instagram @southfeasterdelphia for more instant gratification.

Stephanie

 
 

We Have Color!

Our bedroom makeover is very nearly done! We just have a few minor things to tackle before Labor Day weekend. David was our awesome painter this weekend, and I was mostly on Estelle duty. I did finish up the trim paint, but that was all of 2 ft. of help. Check out the progress!

Before:

In Progress:

 

 

 

 

After, but still in progress:

 

 

 

Well, what else do we have to do?! I copied our to-do list from previous posts, and added some little odd and ends.

  • Fill screw holes and sand the headboard
  • Install baseboard at wall patch area, install quarter round throughout the room
  • PAINT – headboard will be white, walls will be white and Benjamin Moore Palladian Blue, trim will be white, touch up paint on trim and at edges
  • Find an attractive extension cord/power strip for our lamp, it will be hidden behind the headboard
  • Buy the FJELLSE pine bed from Ikea, chop off the head board, sand, paint it white, spray paint screws
  • Buy plastic bins for headboard storage
  • Move the two file cabinets down to the basement
  • New window treatments, probably some inconspicuous white cellular shades, these blackout shades were purchased a few minutes ago
  • Rework existing wall art and restyle the headboard contents, the harmonica framing is as far as I got today
  • Maybe a new duvet cover, and dye existing off-white duvet covers and blankets, idye packs are in hand
  • We need to do something about the Ikea Poang, new cushion cover?
  • Find a couple of decorative pillows
  • Maybe a neutral jute rug, eventually

David is already getting excited about his next project…updating/finishing the bathroom trim, which would include wood panel wainscoting. The wood you see is an old gym floor, it would probably be sanded down, much like the wood wall just outside the bathroom.

 

But wait! It was not all work and no play this weekend. We helped some friends celebrate their daughter’s third birthday. They hosted a very fun South Philadelphia block party! Too bad we can’t do this every weekend. Estelle did not want to leave, and she nearly fell asleep in her stroller on the short walk home.

 

 

 

 

 

 

How’s that for one well-documented weekend?! The weather was perfect…you can tell September is near. Have a good week, everyone.

Stephanie