March 28, 2014

Our 1970's House Makeover Part 4: Behind the Scenes

Hey ya'll. I don't have any house pictures for you today. I know you probably want to smoosh me. But, this is real life, and real life is messy and rarely goes as planned. However, I can officially confirm that the floor stain is in the building!!! 
We have lift off. 
I might have pictures for you next week, or I might just have another picture of a breakfast sandwich. 
I'm learning to stop predicting things.
Watch me do it 5 times in this post.







 I live and work from our house, and since the past five weeks have left me feeling more than a little displaced, I've basically taken up residence at Panera.
Sidenote: I never want to see another Ciabatta in my life after this. 
For the record, it's not the Ciabatta's fault. 

Second sidenote: Speaking of working from home, tons of you guys have sent me emails asking for blogging advice lately, which is crazy since I'm literally someone who blogs about egg sandwiches. BUT, I'm thinking maybe there's some value in sharing what I've learned in the past two years. So, I'm working on putting something together for you. 
I think I've written and re-written it 14 times in a week.
It's been keeping me busy during The Great-Stain-Wait of 2014.
And I'll probably only blog about blogging once this year, so if you've got questions, let me know. The more the merrier.


Anyways, so yes, the stain is on the floors today. 
And so far so good.  
I know this is officially the second week I've blown you off about stain thoughts. I just want to have finished floors AND finished thoughts before we discuss. I am seriously terrible at blogging about something that is in progress. I need to mess stuff up a million times, make it better, and THEN tell you what happened. 
Exposing myself to criticism is the equivalent of crawling in a 
T-Rex's mouth. 
I'm scared, Ma.

So, it's been a little hairy in week 5. There's a little old man that stares back at me every time I make the mistake of looking in the mirror lately.
Because the stress of living in Panera is giving me hardcore nasolabial folds. 
Just to be clear.


Sorry Warren. I respect your financial prowess so much that I literally wrote a paper on you in business school (*I'm so weird*), but for some reason you just popped into my head when I was searching Google for an elder gent to poorly photoshop over my bridal picture.
And the results were too amazing to turn back.



Can you guys tell I am literally losing my mind with each passing post? I feel like we're all witnessing a slow descent into madness, which is unfortunate because it's me.
So....
Let's talk about cats.
Other than Panera, I've been spending a lot of time at my mom's house. My mom's house is where Mr. Pippin lives.
And I just really feel like if we're going to be friends, you should know about Mr. Pippin. 
He was a formative presence in my young adult life.
Mr. Pippin was the barn cat when my parents lived on their farm, before my dad died. Don't get sad. I'm just giving you a reference point, so that you understand just who Mr. Pip is and why we love him. 
I desperately want you to understand.
In my mom's new house, Pippin is more of an indoor/outdoor cat, and he seems to relish his new situation.
He is loved a whole lot, and as it turns out, he loves poofy blankets as much as he once loved killing mice.
He looks pure evil, but he is the cuddliest, most lovable cat you'll ever meet. 
He's SO loud though, and Tootie and Cheese are beautiful, mute creatures.
This is why I often end up at Panera, rather than my mom's, when I'm trying to work. 
If I could go back in time, I would fight the good fight to have Pip named Screech.

Purely because I love Dustin Diamond.




And just to really flesh out the cat-talk...
 as much as I love Pip like an obnoxious, hairy little brother, nothing compares to the lethargic duo taking up permanent residence on my bed at home.
I know how it is when you're looking at other people's cats, and you're like 'I do not care about those creatures. Make it stop.', but I really feel like this is an exception. 
They're like little blobs of fur-laced-goodness.
Don't fight it.




Anyways, my apologies for the 43 week renovation blog-pause.
I've never done this before and I'm totally learning as I go.
And making a giant mess of it.

Thank you for embracing my mess.

We'll look back and laugh about that one ridiculous time I blogged about Dustin Diamond and cats x 3. 
I swear.

If all goes well, I'll be designing a stair rail next week.
And have some fully stained, yet still-messy-house pictures.
There I go predicting again. When will I ever learn. Seriously, what is wrong with me.

'Til next time!
P.S. The other posts in the House Makeover series can be found here:





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38 comments:

  1. I will never laugh about any blog post that talks about cats. I have 3 cats and they are my children.

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    1. And that immediately makes us best friends. :)

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  2. So, yes, I *should* be away from the computer.... but I'm actually glad I'm not. You genuinely make me laugh out loud, and I love that you're always authentically you. I've read your blog for a long time, and you were definitely a big inspiration for me to finally start my own blog (who is still a tiny baby). Keep the posts coming, Warren Buffett, cats and all. :)
    - Laura

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    1. Aw, Laura, thank you. You know how to make a girl feel loved. Which is much needed when said girl is blogging about the Buffet. Like, what am I DOING?! xo

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  3. I have 5 cats. One is like Pip and won't stop meowing alllll day long, but the rest are like Tootie and Cheese. We can have a crazy cat lady party and be like those people that whip out their wallets and show off pictures of their children. Ha!

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    1. 5?!?! Oh, how I love it. I would totally adopt 3 more, but since Jesse feeds and poops them (It's a steadfast agreement we have...you clean the litterbox, I'll clean the ENTIRE house. Done and DONE.), he would definitely run away if I brought home another brigade of felines. From one cat lady to another, props.

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  4. First of all, I love cats too. I always say that if I ever lost my phone and someone else found it and searched through my photos, they mighy be somewhat shocked/concerned about what they'd found. Now that we got that out of the way, I'll just share with you that during week 4 of our renovation, I caught a 24 hour stomach bug. I had NOWHERE to go besides home and I was so sick I dont think I could have gone anywhere else anyway. But I was basically laying on the floor in a spare bedroom, because I had nowhere else to go where there wasn't drilling or hammering or sawing or dust. Tgen, I'd have to race to the bathroom every so often with basically four strangers in my house with me. It was THE WORST. One guy offered to drive me to the hospital, lol. I was jyst thinking back to that time and even though it was only a month and a half ago, it honestly feels like a long time ago already. Do whatever you have to do to feel better (except drugs. Don't do drugs). You're almost there! :)

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    1. Christine, this comment brought me endless joy. Not because you were miserable, but because I feel like you GET ME. Thank you for understanding my renovation misery/excitement. It's an evil emotion-hybrid. xo

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  5. Never tire of hearing about cats. I love me all the cats in the world!! ; )

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    1. Yay!! Ha...me too. I just assumed that I'm really weird and most people aren't obsessed with cats. Glad to know there's so many of us out there!! xo

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  6. Virginia, Thank you for your blog. I describe myself as not having one martha-stewart-gene in my body and have a real hard time actually making a place look pretty and homey and, you know, like your pictures, but I've been following your blog for a few months and your simplicity and authenticity really start to inspire! You also make it easy, so I have started to take baby steps into the whole home decorating world... so thanks again! Also, that you love cats makes you automatically an uber trustworthy savant on any topic! Keep posting, I'm looking forward to your post about blogging. Is blogging your full-time job, or do you blog in your spare time from another job? Best Wishes, *IRIS*

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    1. Hi Iris!! Thank you so much! Yes, the baby steps are key. I started out really feeling kinda the same way you describe. Just keep at it and your abilities and confidence will grow over time! To answer your question, yes, blogging is my full time job these days. It has been for a little over a year, and it's a dream come true! It took so much time and work to get to that point, but I'm really glad I stuck with it! Thanks again! xo

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  7. Adorable kitties. I have a soft gray blanket like the white one in the photograph, and my cat adores it. (We fight over it.) I feel your pain waiting for your floors to be finished and being "displaced" from your home. My husband and I installed laminate flooring (yep, laminate - it looks good) in November. It was 3 rooms, a lot of work and no fun living in the mess, but worth getting rid of discusting carpeting. Now my kitchen is a mess, because I'm painting my cabinets. I feel like I've been living in a mess since I first read your blog last August when I started painting my house! (Not your fault! You taught me how to paint trim and the magic of painter's caulk.)

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    1. Hi Bev! It sounds like you totally know what I'm going through! 3 things: 1, I've seen some really amazing laminate and couldn't even believe it wasn't real wood, so I bet it does look really great! 2, I soooo know how you feel about the kitchen mess, but it will be so worth it in the end!! and lastly 3, Caulk is the best thing on the planet when it comes to perfecting a paint job! So glad you discovered it!

      Thanks again Bev! Good luck with your projects! xo

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  8. I don't have a cat. But now a cat lives on my deck and thinks that I am it's human. It was so scary skinny I named him Bones and fed him tuna and cheese and pork chops. Then I bought cat food...and got a Vet appointment...and special bowls. I am screwed.

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    1. AW, BONES!!! I'm so glad you saved him! I love that you fed him tuna and cheese and pork chops...he is yours forever. :)

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  9. Virgina, I love your blog because your so real, I feel the same that blogging should be about REAL stuff and that's why I love reading yours. And I too love cats, I have three, and One of them, Spook is the most talkative cat I have ever had! An Obnoxious, hairy little brother I never had but could not live without. My husband and I have been working on our home for ten very long years now so I completely understand for your not getting things done as quickly as you would like. Thanks for making me laugh and thanks for keeping it real. :)
    Cindy@GlassSlipperRestorations

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    1. Hi Cindy!
      Thank you so much! I very much prefer to write about the real stuff in life....feels much more comfortable, ya know? :) I clicked over to your blog to check out your ten year renovation....LOVE your home. I've always wanted to renovate a Victorian home like that. So inspiring! xo

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  10. Virginia...you really gave me the giggles tonight! I just started following your blog and forgive me for saying this...I don't usually follow DIY blogs all that much, mostly because I'm all thumbs and all those great projects are wasted on me. And, again I apologize, I didn't recognize your blog when it popped up but when I clicked on, started reading, then started laughing, I clearly knew why I hit that follow button!!

    Well, enough about you...ha!

    XO,
    Jane

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    1. That's so awesome, Jane. Thank you for finding me! Glad to have you here!
      xo

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  11. This is one of the best blog posts i've read in a long time! I'm still laughing while i'm writing this! Thanks so much for the Sunday Smiles!

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    1. Well, thanks Amy! That's kinda awesome! You're more than welcome...thank YOU!

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  12. I LOVE this blog, ahh what a season you are in! Thankfully just a season, a new day is dawning! One with finished floors AND a handrail. :)

    Had to tell you real quick about our Allie (that's Allison Bridget Poppy Smith) so named by my 9 year old daughter, Kailyn. We found her, less than a week old, in our wood pile out back. She had been put out by one of the many feral cats that roamed our 3 acres. She had the death rattle and I knew she wasn't long for this world. But alas, prayers of a sweet 9 year old were heard, and after a failed attempt to drip cows milk in her mouth (which we read later can kill kittys) I raced to the store for a tee tiny bottle and some kitty formula. To our surprise (and my dismay) she lived!! First generation domestic and oh so sweet, um most of the time. :) We love her! She's a beautiful little calico who hates to be licked by Daisy, our 13 year old cat, because she has never licked by her mama, only our wash cloth with a little warm water on it, haha. :)

    Anyway, take your time and many blessings to you!!

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    1. Thanks so much, Caroline! So precious about Allie! Bless her little feral heart! I'm so glad you found her and saved her. Thanks for sharing....I can never get enough cat stories.
      xo

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  13. Oh Virginia - you still have the power to make us smile, laugh, adore your cats along with you - even when you think you are at your lowest ebb....what does that say about you???? Just that you are amazing and we are there for you in a weird over-the-internet-never-to meet-in-person kinda way! We are about to tip our house upside down to put carpet down (yes we do use carpet in New Zealand. A lot.) Not so much the stained floorboards...but anyhoo I share your pain. However, the upside is that I'm using the whole exercise as an excuse (pardon me) REASON to re-evaluate all our worldly possessions as I move them/box them/prepare them. For The New Carpet. Am I scared.... oh yes! Am I excited....oh yes! Would I let anyone see the resulting chaos via a blog like you have done.....heck no!!! You are one brave and inspirational gal. Big time Kiwi bird hammer dance underway even while you are sleeping!!!

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    1. I'm awake!! I'm awake!! And so happy to read your sweet comment! Thank you times a million! Just so sweet. And I sooo know what you mean about using the chaos as a great time to re-evaluate everything you own. As I crammed all of our possessions into our bedroom, I ended up donating about half of everything we owned. I mean, I got most of it from Goodwill anyways, so it's not like it was super hard to part with it, but still....It was so liberating! And I can't wait to start completely fresh once everything is done. Good luck in your carpet adventure and I'm sending my love straight to New Zealand!! xo

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    2. Woohoo!!!! So happy to "talk" with you from the other side of the world!!! I know what you mean about Goodwill shops and shopping - I've been an addict for many many years....long before is became cool! And so my favourite Hospice shop got a CARLOAD+++++ of good which in all fairness probably came from there in the first place. But hey - what goes around comes around and I love to think someone else might love what I no longer need...Kindred thoughts to you Lovely Gal - and stay strong. We say "kia kaha" here - which is Maori language for keep the faith and be strong...Kiwi love to you....

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  14. You have kitties, I have doggies. Call it even? From one animal lover to another, love your craziness, kiddo, you always make me smile.

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    1. Thank youuuu!! Even we'll call it! :)

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  15. Right with you, sista. We are also in the middle of some big projects at our house and I have found it SO. RIDICULOUSLY. DIFFICULT to blog through it. I just feel like people don't want to see pictures of me painting and painting and painting and unpacking and the really mundane things that go along with long projects.

    Although I do try to take pictures of the madness and you better believe a couple of our dog always end up in the mix. The furballs just seem to always be the cutest during remodeling...

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    1. Ha!! It's so true!! Thanks for making me feel less like a crazy person, Amanda!! I mean, I realize I still totally am, but..... :)

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  16. You can talk cat talk to me anytime!
    I would never say "make it stop" ;)

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  17. I love your blog and thank you for making me laugh today. It was a fun read from the normal DIY stuff. Keep it up ;)

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  18. dogs and cats i love hearing about it they are family members, if anyone says who cares .. dont really care about themselves much lol... i love hearing about your stories and the ups and down of the renovations .. joys and tears... ive been thru some and still will have many more .. like my roof, siding, attic and basements .. but that for another time ,right now its my main floor .. so i look forwards to completion of your main floor .. and you have talent of decorating ... beautiful work ..

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  19. Ohhhh Virginia. I just found your blog and I'm SO so SO glad I did. I feel like you have been hiding in some corner of my own brain and somehow escaped into a blog. I have two cats and it takes all the restraint in the world not to "get" (capture, adopt, squander, pilfer, hoard, have) ALL THE CATS... but I mainly do it because I'm 31 and single and think I've got to trick some man into thinking I'm a little sane, get him to marry me, and THEN "get" ALL THE CATS. (...contemplates deleting everything she just typed... feels safe here... leaves it...). I digress... thank you for sharing your fun projects and streams of consciousness. I started a blog not too long ago, then stopped, also not too long ago. Maybe I'll get back around to it - especially knowing that there are other people out there.. like me! Thanks again!

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    1. Ooooooh Jessica. It's comments like yours that make me so glad that I put my weirdness out into the world. Based purely off what little I know about you so far (and am immediately obsessed with), you should 100% start that blog back up and let it roll, baby!! Let. It. Roll. Thank you, thank you, thank you....and um, the part about 'getting' ALL the cats....#1: You should do it anyways, sans-man, but I'm thinking that I'm probably giving you terrible advice right now. Probably. And #2: Heart MELTS with feelings of brain-twin-ness.

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