One Room Challenge – Kitchen Remodel

AHHH – it’s that time again. This time last year, I was participating in my first One Room Challenge, and starting today, this is my third room to makeover during this blogger challenge. The past two rooms have been friends/clients, but today, The Walther house is getting to participate. If you missed out the past two times, the One Room Challenge is an excuse to get a room remodeled in six weeks. I will post every Thursday with progress of the transformation. 

So, this marks the first week of the 2016 Fall One Room Challenge, and without further ado, our kitchen is the room I’m participating with.

When we moved in two years ago, I painted the cabinets and called it a day. I knew that I would eventually redo the entire space, but I really didn’t think it would be 2.5 years later. It’s sad to admit, but I’ve actually gotten used to the gross white formica and gray racing stripe backsplash. Let’s take a look at the Before’s!    


On the other side of this living room wall sit’s the kitchen…come on in.
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We cheated and switched out the dishwasher before I took the “before” pics. For the last two years it’s been black just like all the other appliances.  Do you see the missing drawer under the sink – can you say ghetto?

Next week I’ll show you the plan and then it’s go time. A six week transformation means we will hopefully have a new kitchen by Thanksgiving.

Check back each Thursday to see progress. Mdub is more than thrilled this is about to happen (NOT). 

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Our Old House

I’m excited to say that the One Room Challenge is coming back next Thursday, and I’ll be participating for the third time. If you don’t remember, or didn’t read this blog back then, the challenge is amongst bloggers to transform a room in six weeks. The previous two projects I participated with were a formal living room and then a nursery, which by the way, still needs pictures taken of the final design.
Since this challenge is a great excuse to get the ball rolling, I’m actually thinking about doing a room in my own house. Between real work, fun work, kids and life, the old saying about the cobbler’s kids have no shoes, really is true in our house. Other than AB’s nursery, our house is pretty much the exact same as it looked the day we moved in, two and a half years ago.
The first house we lived in, we gutted and renovated every single inch all at once….or should I say my dad did. This house, well, not so much. I have a long list of items that I would like to do, and then a shorter list of things that “have to be done.” If you would have told me 2.5 years ago we would still be living with the original kitchen and master bath, I would have laughed in your face. So, as I’m reminiscing about our first house and how awesome it was all “finished” I thought I would share some pics.

Because everyone loves a good before and after!

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Floral – Flamingo Girls Room Reveal

How have I not shared these photos? This room was finished over a year ago, and for some reason, I’m just now sharing it. 
As always, the Walker house is always up for doing something bold.  When I showed them what I had in mind, they were immediately on board. 
If you remember, or were around a year ago, I shared the plan HERE. After weeks of ordering, searching for, and then having the wall painted, the room finally came together. Then, it took another six months to get the photographer to actually take photos of her own house. What’s that saying about the cobbler kids have no shoes?? 

Take a look at how we combined a love for flamingos, flowers, and lots and lots of PINK

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I LOVE LOVE a room with two matching bed, and these fit the theme perfectly. You can barely see, but there are flower rosettes on the headboard and footboard. The homeowner already had the beds and mirrored chest, but everything else was new.

I did an entire post HERE on the pink chair. I’m not a fan of taking items straight off the shelf to decorate with. Most everything needs to be painted, a monogram, or new knobs added. We painted the chair and the shelves, which are from IKEA, but, of course, aren’t on their site.

The accent wall was hand painted by a family friend – it’s even better in person!
If I were a little girl, I would want my room to look exactly like this. All of my favorites- flowers, flamingos, and a lot of PINK. 

WSU -Sorority House

On Tuesday night, I returned from a super fun three and a half days. I got to live out the sorority house dream that I didn’t get to experience at Texas Tech. (only because we aren’t allowed to live in our houses) My pledge sister Julie lives in Seattle and is the advisor for the Kappa Delta chapter at Washington State University (that’s where Leach is for all you Tech fans). About two months ago, she emailed me asking if I would be interested in designing a new formal living room for the house. Um – heck yea, how fun is that?  I designed, she ordered, and then about two weeks ago she asked if I was interested in flying up to install the room. Hmm, let me think about it. A mini-vacation where the temp is never above 80, when’s the next flight out?
I flew out on Saturday evening wearing jeans – jeans y’all…..it’s 145 degrees in Dallas, and the thought of putting jeans on about sent me over the edge. Julie picked me up in Seattle, laughing as I stood at the curb freezing….it was a glorious 53 degrees. We spent the night at her house, and then the next morning made the four hour drive to Pullman.

Once we arrived, we had a ton of boxes waiting on us. We unpacked, and I got the full tour. Y’all – this house was huge and so many rooms. I was so turned around, but finally learned the layout by day three.
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The room I was sent to make over was even worse than what pictures showed. Shag carpet 2 inches thick and pea green walls.
Here’s a look at all the before pics! It’s a large room, but the current furniture was way to large for the space, and by no means, does this look formal.
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A carpenter/handyman was supposed to be coming on Monday morning to paint, hang light fixtures, and move furniture. Seeing that 52 girls were to move in early Tuesday morning, I had a mini panic attack thinking of our to do list. So, I turned my clothes inside out, and three of us started painting. #didn’tpackpaintingclothes

 

When Julie contacted me months before, she said hardwood floors weren’t in the current budget, but they were aiming for next summer to install. So, we went ahead and proceeded with rugs in hopes they would have hardwoods in a year. Well, early Monday morning, as if we didn’t have enough on our plate, I thought it would be a great idea to pull the carpet back just to check. This is a house that is over a hundred years old so the thought of hardwoods under the carpet wasn’t a total long shot. Holy hardwood heaven, y’all! I asked the carpenter if he by chance could stay late and take the carpet up for us because they looked to be in great shape. His response, “no, but you can.”  Hmmm, OK! So, what would any sane designer do?  That’s right, beg ten sorority girls to help out. We ordered food in, started pulling carpet up, and two hours later, we had some beautiful floors.

After a really late night of installing, the finished room was better than I planned. The floors just make all the difference in the world. We painted the walls, pulled up the carpet, installed new lighting, and took away the window treatments.  
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Look at the side by side to see the real transformation.

Chairs are coming for this room – they were just on backorder!

Y’all – I had the best time. I got to escape the 150 degree weather here in Texas, got to  transform a room in three days, all while thinking I’m still the same age as the girls in the house. Little do they know it’s now been 16 years since I went through Rush.
(I’m pretty sure they thought I was OLD!)

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Thank you, Julie, for such a fun time. I hope the KD girls of WSU enjoy this room for many years to come!

Sorry if you got this in your inbox yesterday….I have no clue what happened!


Wayfair Feature – Nursery Trends

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 About three weeks ago, Wayfair reached out to see if they could feature one of my nurseries on their blog. Um, you don’t have to ask me twice – you sure can!
Last week, the blog post went live, and I couldn’t have been more thrilled.
They featured several designers in a blog post titled Nursery Trends. Scroll down midway to see a picture of Griffin’s Nursery.  They even asked me for a quote. #pinchme
Thank you, Wayfair, for sharing this unique baby boy’s nursery! Definitely a lot of trends going on in this room. 

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To the City We Go!

Today, I am writing part 2 of our NY Trip.  If you missed part 1, be sure to catch up on our amazing trip to upstate New York.

Woohoo – after our 3 hour train ride back to the City on Sunday, we caught a cab and went straight to our hotel. We patiently waited while MDub checked us in! Our view from our room was perfect for PB since his new favorite word is “Taxi,” and every morning we saw approximately 400 go by! 

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We couldn’t actually check into our hotel until 3:00, so we left our luggage and set out to explore. First up, Top of the Rock and the NBC studios. An early dinner and bed time were needed after a long morning of traveling and a busy weekend. 

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Monday morning, we were up bright and early to walk to breakfast with the rest of the 5 million people headed to work. I guarantee they were so annoyed with three tourists and two strollers taking up their sidewalk. A quick pic with a NYC Firetruck was in order every time we saw one. This was the only morning we ate at an actual restaurant for breakfast. We quickly learned these NYC waiters mean biz and were oh, so happy to be given a table with two toddlers! Starbucks and street vendor breakfast the rest of the trip!
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Subway time down to Chinatown. We walked around, saw the markets and then were outta there.  I honestly have no clue how my cousin has lived in Hong Kong for the last four years. Those smells though!

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On to the 9-11 Memorial and to Battery Park. This was as close as we got to Lady Liberty as we were trying to cram too many things in. MDub and I have been before, and my mom kept saying all she cared about was seeing it. I wish we would have taken the ferry over — next time! 

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Everyone kept saying it was going to be hot in the summer, and they were 100% correct. It was oh, so HOT, and we big time melted on this day.  MDUB had a conference call so we stopped for a while and let the kids run around in Battery Park. DeeDee and I are hiding somewhere under a tree. IMG_4613

Next stop – the Brooklyn Bridge and lunch at the first Grimaldi’s ever. We were all so exhausted and couldn’t wait to sit down and enjoy lunch – um, why don’t these places have AC?? I mean, it gets so hot in the summer you would think it would be worth the investment. Hot pizza in a tiny restaurant only meant we were headed for ice cream next. 

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A ferry ride, bus ride and a few blocks later, we were back at our hotel. Mdub and I made a reservation for dinner while DeeDee stayed back with the kids. Of course I took zero pictures of us at dinner. Again – next time!

Tuesday was Central Park Day. When Mdub and I visited eight years ago, we didn’t even go to Central Park.  What were we thinking?  This day was the highlight of the city probably. Lots of walking, carousel rides and the famous, over-rated Serendipity. It was fun to check it off the list, and we may or may not be making frozen hot chocolate in the near future, but it was tiny!! We found a firetruck museum and the candy store!!

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We finished off the day with Wicked and then a stroll through Times Square. It was the first time either of us had seen it. #GirlsNightOut while Mdub put the babies to sleep!

Wednesday morning we got up and packed, checked out of our hotel and then made a few last stops through Little Italy for one last meal of pizza. On to the airport to make our way back home. PB made a friend, and AB made some enemies while she decided to freak out for a good 20 minutes.

We had SO MUCH FUN. Despite the heat, we had a blast. We definitely want to go back in the winter with the kids……and DeeDee. Traveling with toddlers is not exactly a laid back vacation. But, we decided, it’s either chaos at home or chaos in a hotel room, and it’s nothing we can’t handle. All in all, the kids did fantastic. Took naps in their strollers and just like their mama, if you don’t let them get tired, hungry or hot, then they are A -ok!

NYC Trip – Part One

Last week, we got back from the most fun trip to upstate New York and NYCity. My cousin got married just outside of Queensbury, NY, so we decided to make a week out of it. There’s so many pictures I’m splitting it up into two posts – Upstate NY portion, and then “the city.” Picture overload coming your way!

We left Dallas early Thursday afternoon just in time to take a three hour train ride to Albany, NY and arrive at our hotel right at midnight. Whose idea was that with two toddlers in tow? Not sure, but it was a bad idea.  Back to the flight – thankful for DeeDee to  help out along the way. These two moved from seat to seat between us all. PB was thrilled, as you can tell, to take his picture with the pilot!

We got up early Friday morning and drove to Cooperstown to see the Baseball Hall of Fame. I had no clue what we were in for, and my mom and I are NOT museum people, but it was something cool to say we’ve done. The actual town was amazing. Very small, like Rotan small, but so pretty. They’ve done a great job of keeping the character and history of the town alive. We wore our Rangers’ gear to represent!!

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After touring Cooperstown, we drove about an hour north for the wedding weekend. I apparently didn’t take a single picture at the rehearsal dinner, but it was gorgeous. Right on a beautiful lake and 70 degrees. AHHH-mazing!
Saturday, we spent the day exploring more of upstate NY with B&B. Of course, a history lesson was on the agenda. We toured an old fort where both kids got to shoot bow & arrows. Then we found a great restaurant over-looking the water where AB discovered she loves clam chowder!

All cleaned up and headed to the wedding. In Texas, we don’t get 70 degree, zero humidity, zero wind, outdoor weddings in the middle of July, or ever for that matter. Upstate NY has the best summer weather ever, and it made for the perfect outdoor wedding. The kids had a blast at the reception and actually lasted a lot longer than we anticipated. Pictures just don’t do it justice – the location was just so pretty.
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Sunday morning, we were up and on our way to the city! Another three hour train ride was ahead of us before we spent the next three days in NYC. PB got to meet “Sir Topham Hatt,” so his day was made.IMG_4577

On Thursday I’ll post the pictures of our time in the city. 

All in all, traveling with two toddlers was not bad. Yes, we’ve been to the beach and to the lake with the kids, but this was their first real vacation. Thank you, Bo & Julie, for planning an out of state wedding! It gave us an excuse to have a fun trip with DeeDee.