Thanks to some very unusually mild weather in Ontario I’ve been able to finish up a lot of outdoor projects over the last week or so.  Today I finally put our house numbers up!

I really wanted these ones:
But at $6 a piece plus lots of shipping to get them to Canada, I just couldn’t justify the cost, considering all of the renovations that our house needs.
So I started thinking about a frugal alternative, and that’s when I remembered seeing wooden letters at Michael’s for just a little over $1 a piece.
For approximately $25, I bought all of the letters I needed.  Then came priming and painting, and screwing around on a wobbly ladder for an hour, and voila!  My new house numbers are up!

I love the way they turned out!  I also ripped the old eavestrough off the front of the porch, and the rotten wood underneath, and painted window frames and grates for our furnace.  Over all, it was a very productive day today!

Finally, finally, finally we’ve removed the ugly front door that was on our house, and replaced it with the one we bought from ReStore!  If the weather holds out, I’m going to be painting it this weekend.

Here’s a little reminder of what the old door looked like:

And here’s the new door!

We were planning on replacing the glass in the transom window anyways, but we weren’t planning on accidentally putting a hammer through it! 

And here’s my brand new outdoor light fixture.

I cannot wait to see the door once the mail slot flaps are reinstalled, and it’s painted this colour:
Hopefully on Monday I’ll be able to show you the finished door!

Hello to anyone who still regularly checks my blog!  

First of all, I want to thank everyone who has continued to follow me, and for the words of enquiry and encouragement that I’ve received from many of my readers.

I stopped writing rather abruptly in July, when my children finished school for the summer.  I never intended to take a break from blogging, but between our renovations, and the 5 crazy kids I had underfoot all summer, I was just too exhausted to continue.

My workload completely overwhelmed me to the point that I became depressed and lost interest in my blog.  Since seeking treatment, I have realized that I need to have something for myself.  Interior design is my passion, and this blog fills my need to share and express my creativity.  I am still amazed that bloggers like Kirsten Krason, Danielle Oakey, and Jenny Komenda, to name a few,  manage to work, write, care for their children and maintain their homes so seemingly perfectly.  I read their blogs and wish that I could have it all together the way they appear to.  It also kind of makes me hate them.  A little bit.

I mean, honestly, my house is a disaster zone most of the time.  I’ve actually contemplated murdering the mailman and burying him in the backyard when I thought he got a glimpse of my house through the window.  I work from the minute I get up in the morning at 6:30 am until the minute I go to bed, usually at around 2 am. On top of the endless amount of work that caring for a home and 5 children is, I’ve also been trying to work on our renovations every day.  There just simply isn’t enough time in a day to do everything on my list.  If I’m inside cleaning, then renovation projects sit half-finished.  If I’m out on a ladder, stripping paint from the veranda roof (for example), the dishes pile up inside, and Bella does stuff like paint on every conceivable surface with pink bubble gum toothpaste.  (Yes, really.) It is incredibly frustrating to try to juggle all of the demands put on me.

But I am doing my best, here.  I guess it’s the perfectionist in me that feels so disappointed that there is not one area of my life right now that I am excelling at.  I have a vision in my mind of what I want my home to look like, how I want my business to evolve, and the kind of wife and mother I want to be, but I feel like no matter how hard I work, I never really get to where I want to go.

Sorry to sound like a whiner, but I just thought I owed it to my readers to be completely honest about my long absence from my blog, and where my head is at.

So anyways……I’ve been feeling really great lately, and am excited to begin blogging again.  I have a lot of great things to share with all of you, and tons of projects and ideas that will be making their appearance here in the coming days and weeks.  I hope all of you will stick around and check in regularly to check out the progress we’ve made on our home, and to chat!

Yay, it’s the weekend again!  
I have lots to do this weekend (what else is new) which should make for some good posts next week!
Oh, how I would love to have even one completed room in this house!  Oh well, I guess all I can do is just keep working away at it; and religiously playing the lottery! 😉
Check out some of the posts I enjoyed this week:

I am in LOVE with these pillow covers I found on Etsy, from a shop called Sukan!  They are made from antique Turkish kilim (a type of rug), using wool and natural dyes.  I love how unique and beautiful each pillow is!  Here are just a few of the pillows offered by Sukan (click the pictures to link directly to the shop):

How beautiful are these pillows?!

Make sure to check out their sale items; some of their pillow covers are on for $29.95!

I found a link to this site on Twitter this morning, and I am so excited to share it with you!

Jessie Hyde and her husband, Mike, are fixing up their house on the cheap, and doing an amazing job!

They have an extensive tutorial on making your own poured concrete countertops, as well as lots of other great articles.

In fact, since reading her posts on her countertop, my Mike and I are actually thinking of making our own countertops.  I mean, look at how amazing Jessie’s look:

Check out Imperfectly Polished today!

Today’s post is just a quick little idea for thrifty artwork.

If you recall our “before” house tour, you’ll remember that Mike’s office is right off of our living room and front hall entrance.  Mike is an MMA journalist, and trying to incorporate artwork and stuff into his office space that I can live with being seen from other rooms is difficult.

Mike loves to collect old books, and over the years we’ve found several different vintage books about martial arts, which have really nice cover art.  I told Mike that I wished he’d let me rip the covers off and frame them, and then it hit me:

Why don’t I just colour photocopy them?!

I bought frames that look like they’re chrome, but are actually plastic from the dollar store for $2 each, and the photocopies were 60 cents each, so for approximately $9 (taxes… welcome to Canada) I managed to find artwork that both Mike and I like.

(Please forgive my horrible, wood filler-covered, un-painted trim.  I swear I will get to it eventually!)

Hi everyone!  I hope you enjoyed your weekend as much as I did!  We had the most beautiful weather the last few days!  On Friday night we went to see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 2, and it was AWESOME!!  My kids got all dressed up in their Hogwarts robes and carried their wands; why I did not get a picture of this, I do not know.

On Saturday, we took the kids to our local zoo, which has a great splash pad and train, all of which is free.

The kids had so much fun!

Today we took Lola for a walk downtown, and let her and the kids wade in Millenium Fountain, (a large wading fountain) which they loved.

It felt so wonderful to put all of the renovation work on hold for the weekend, and just have fun as a family!  

But all that fresh air sure does tucker you out! 

Wow, I can’t believe it’s Friday again already!
I have lots of work to do around this house this weekend, and hopefully I’ll get to do something fun with the kiddos.  I read lots of fantastic posts this week in blogland!  
Here are a few of my favourites: