Power Tool Wish List....

As I mentioned before, my parents came down a few weekends ago for my birthday and to help us build the island for our kitchen. Within an hour of their arrival our backyard had been transformed into a complete workshop. My dad had let us borrow one of his miter saws previously, but he brought a bigger, better one to use; a table saw; compressor with nail gun (makes finish nailing so much easier); a router with attachments galore and all sorts of other fun (IMO) things to help us get the job done right. I was most jealous of his multi-max and his kreg jig.

He was not surprised to learn that I wanted all of these things and that I had watched many a late-night/early-morning infomercials on power tools.
We would definitely tackle more projects if we had the proper tools on hand. But, we don’t, so we have to schedule our big projects around my parents schedule and whenever they feel like making the 5.5hr drive (each way) to visit me, instead of playing with their new grand-daughter. Anyways, we are slowly trying to build up our tool arsenal.

So far we have:
Random Orbital Sander
Borrowed Double-Compound sliding miter saw
Circular Saw
Power Drill
Craftsman rotary tool
Levels, Squares, Clamps, Multiple Drill Bits….I’m sure I’m forgetting something.

Kreg-Jig ~ $100
Table-Saw ~$200 - $400
Dremel Multi-Max ~ $100
Plunge Router (I think I can get an attachment to do this with my rotary tool ~$30) ~$100 new
Dremel Trio ~ $100 (I could live without this *for now*)
Finish nailer w/ compressor ~$300 (ouch, I think we’ll use our trusty hammer and nail set for a while)

Admittedly, my list isn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. All my wish-list items are less than the cost of this stool.*
I’m stalking all these power tools on Ebay; unfortunately there aren’t too many good deals to be had there either.

I’m thinking about taking a week off sometime this winter to make the trek to Maine and take (what I’m dubbing) ‘Dad’s Cabinet Building Class’. Building things is really so much easier and more convenient when you have gazillions of tools at your disposal and a space designed specifically for building. It’s no fun having to do projects in stages and clean up after each part because you have guests coming over and are currently using your dining room as a workshop. Although I’m not sure how I would get said cabinets back to Mass. the Volvo could probably handle a few, but I might need some cross bars.**

What home-improvement tools are on your wish list?

*You are seeing my powers of rationalization in progress here.
**Christmas List Hint.


Lamp Redo....

We've had these two cheap target lamps since we first moved in together. We didn't even pay anything for them; we found them on the side of the road near our apartment.  I wasn't really loving them in our new living room but floor lamps are not cheap! (and we needed 2) so we decided to make due for now.

I picked up a can of Rustoleum Oil Rubbed Bronze spray paint and went to town....

Big difference in only about 10 minutes....but they still looked like well, cheap target lamps.
These shades that came with the lamps I bought for our bedroom....but I hated them on those lamps and had already bought other shades - these were just sitting in our basement.

They look a little odd when they are illuminated since you can still tell the plastic shade is inside.  It's good enough for now though; and much improved for the minimal $5~$6 spray paint cost.

Have you completed any dirt cheap make-overs recently?


Stool decisions....

Now that our kitchen island/peninsula/bar (I can't figure out what exactly to call it) is almost complete, I have been on the lookout for some stools to accessorize with. 
We had some people over this weekend and I can already tell it's going to change the function of our kitchen 10-fold; entertaining is so much easier now!

Anways, back to the stools in question.

Option A : the option my husband requested that I'm not really considering because it doesn't fit our my kitchen vision at all.

Option B : Bertoia Stools

Option C : Emeco Navy Stools

Option D : LEM Piston Stool

Which would you choose?  Do you have any other suggestions I should consider? 


I don't know how to be NOT busy....

I don’t know how to be not busy.

If I’m ‘busy’ I don’t have time to do other mundane/less exciting things, like cleaning....or working out.
So I’ve surrounded myself with my work, and my business, and our house; and created thousands (probably) unnecessary projects with which to occupy my time so I can stay busy and avoid those unmentionable tasks without feeling guilty about it.

I can’t sit on the couch and do nothing (unless we are watching a movie, and even then no promises). I am almost always doing more than one thing at a time, not doing so feels unproductive.  If I'm watching one of 'my' shows I'm also likely working on designs for clients, stalking other people's blogs, or shopping for anywhere from 1-6 items online.  On average I have 8-10 tabs open with different windows....and sometimes two browsers.  It's a problem.

I’ve been starting to feel a bit burnt out lately. I want to do more things than I have time. Like read more, plant a garden, fix up our house, learn to cook, blog more regularly and be more physically active. But I know that I’ll just substitute one thing for another and still be busy – as I said before, I don’t know how not to be.

I've tried limiting the amount of clients I take on at a particular time, but then someone will email me, and their project sounds fun and interesting and I squeeze them in.  And again, and again.

I think I need that time-travel thing Hermione has.

Do you have a good life-balance? What do you do to make sure you have time for everything you want (and have) to do?



Birthday Present Sneak Peek....

Want to see a sneak peek of one of my birthday presents?

Obviously it's not quite done in this photo.....and to be honest it's not quite done in real life :)
It adds SO much usable counter space to our kitchen.
I have step-by-step photos documenting the process and will *hopefully* have a finished product photo soon!


I like to cook?

Fall is bringing about a previously unknown desire to cook. 
Or maybe its because my husband makes really healthy things and when I cook I can add real ingredients.  We're talking whole milk and butter here people; people shouldn't have to go without them.
I'm a pretty lazy cook though; one, two pots max - which is probably why I have a strange addiction to making soups right now.  Everything in one pot that I don't have to monitor constantly?  sign me up.


Good things to come....

I'm officially the big 2 - 6. 
I predict good things to happen this year.

Calories definately don't count on your birthday.  And if you ask me, they don't count for anyone who chooses to celebrate with you either :)



Birthday Wish-List (the male version)....

The boy's birthday was yesterday - he gave me his birthday wish list at 8:30AM the day OF his birthday.  Although this is pretty standard (he does not share information in a timely manner), he's usually quite punctual to actual events, in fact we get to the movie theater 20 minutes early every time. 

Anyways, this is one version of a 28 year-old boy's birthday wish-list :

Wusthof Classic 8" Chef knife

32" LED LCD (for the bedroom)

BB GUN (we have a large population of unsavory animals in our backyard which he thinks he can scare away if he had a gun)  there is a skunk in particular that keeps digging holes in our yard.  I'm pretty sure this is not what he had in mind, but if I had to buy one it would be this :

Magazine rack for the bathroom - (seriously, this is on his list).

Rotary Tiller - he has grand plans to dig up our backyard and replace all the grass.  He does not like the grass we have now, he says it makes him sick just to look at it.  I'm pretty sure its standard grass.

Landscape Plans for the Backyard -

Obviously I did not get him any of these things, as I do tend to shop BEFORE the actual BIRTHDAY, unlike some people.  I feel this is a pretty random list of things.  Knives and guns to landscape plans and magazine racks?  Who did I marry? 


I heart September....

September is my favorite, and not just because it's my birth month.  I love the weather - I love that I can eat hearty soup, wear sweaters and snuggle under blankets - but that I don't have to wear a jacket and when the sun is out it's still warm.  I love the way September sounds, at least in the northeast, it is rustle-y; the leaves are turning and they are crunchy and you can hear it everywhere.  I love the apple cider and pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. 
But anyways, my birthday is in less than a week - woohoo!  I'll be a ripe old 26.  I was asked to put together a list of gift suggestions :

Dolce & Gabbana - Light Blue (I love this scent, and I'm out).
50mm Prime Lens

Pretend Wide Angle Lens

A deep tissue massage

Tory Burch Reva Flats

A Classic Burberry Trench (always on my list, will probably never happen)

 Some art for our walls, like this Boston Diptych, by StudioKMO

I would love a personalized city print to commemorate our wedding by JHill, like this one Meredith got -

and I think these books would look fabulous on our bookshelves, once we get bookshelves that is.
The boy turned 28 this morning - I'll share his birthday list with you later (as I recieved it all of 15 minutes ago) he's a little behind schedule :)

Whats on your wishlist?


....and we have a winner!

We have a winner for the 6 Mushtache Me! prints.
Comment #24 - which was....... momentspassslow !
Congrats!  I hope they provide ample conversation for your new bathroom :)
Just send me an email with your address and I'll get these shipped off to you!

Thanks to everyone who entered!