Dec 29, 2014

Of Holidays and Huge Projects

I hope everybody had a fabulous holiday! Ours was sweet, hectic and wonderful. The kids were so much fun. And we wore matching jammies. Enough said. And I could be biased, but I'm pretty sure I have the handsomest husband and cutest kids I've ever seen. :)

In other news, I lost my mind yesterday. It's been nice knowing you all, but I'm not sure if I'll survive my newest project. Here's what I did...
Yep, those are my kitchen cabinets. Without doors. Normally I'd clean up for photos, but who's got the time? Just keeping it real so nobody feels bad about their own mess!

When we bought this house, the plan was to paint our little hearts out until every.single.surface was new again. We've saved the most challenging spaces for last, but I've finally had enough of our drab, 80s looking space, so I removed all of the upper doors yesterday. These cabinets are great quality solid wood and should hold up for many more years with fresh paint. So far I've sanded them down (that power sander was FUN!) and plan to degloss and prime today. Those uppers will get a nice coat of white paint. I'll go in phases so the entire kitchen isn't disassembled at once.

Our thought is that we'll do the lowers in a dark charcoal (I've already painted the little peninsula that color and we love it), and keep everything up top white and bright. See that long section of cabinets over the sink? I want to go ahead and replace them with floating shelves. If we feel ambitious, we'll try to remove that bizarro tiled back splash and put up white beadboard. We like to store baby dolls and nail polish on the kitchen counter because that's just how we roll.
We are living with our faux wood laminate counters for the forseeable future, so we're trying to make them work. This inspiration photo should give you an idea of the end goal. Isn't it purdy?! {photo via Apartment Therapy}
I'm toying with the idea of antique brass hardware like this... what do you think?? I think this entire kitchen over at Hello From the Natos blog is so dreamy.
Well we're off to the hardware store for supplies. Wish us luck!!

Dec 2, 2014

What Goes Around

I just love random acts of kindness! And lately I've had lots of sweetness bestowed upon me.
While shopping with both kids a few weeks ago (I was wearing Rosie in her carrier, pushing my cart, and Max was pushing a tiny shopping cart around), my crew was literally clogging up the whole grocery aisle. I apologized as I tried to maneuver around and usher Max out of the way. I had noticed plenty of people getting antsy as they became stuck behind us or couldn't rush past easily enough.

But this time, one woman patiently waited at the end of the aisle, smiling. As we approached, she looked me in the eyes and said, "You're doing a good job." Nothing more, nothing less. Just, "You're doing a good job." She could have said nothing at all. She could have sighed, pretended to be busy with something, or even just smiled and left it at that. Instead, this woman, a total stranger, reached out and said the exact words I needed to hear. Not everyone here thinks my kids are out of control! Or that I'm a crazy, flustered mama! What a wonderful thing for one woman to reach out to another in this way. To offer support.

Today at the store, Rosie was once again in her carrier as I busied myself loading our groceries into the back of the car. Another stranger rushed over and offered to hold the shopping cart in place while I unloaded it. Amazing! My heart feels so full after these types of encounters. So grateful for the human capacity for kindness, that I can easily forget that often times all of us are just as equally grumpy, rushed, self-centered.
These two practiced their kindness skills by coloring together on Thanksgiving. :)

I'm definitely far from a saint, but I do TRY to remind myself that a smile, holding a door, friendly chit-chat - whatever kindness looks like at any given moment - can truly brighten a person's day. These acts of kindness are something I'm trying to focus on with the kids this holiday season. Because selfishly, boosting up others is a way of boosting ourselves up too. Kindness feels good. Not always easy, but the rewards are there for the taking.