Archive for the ‘Home Improvement’ Category

The Bathroom is (finally) done!   1 comment

Back before Nate and I became parents, we became homeowners. Our little (tiny) 3 bedroom ranch was built in 1958 and it became ours in August 2008. We love it and we have been enjoying doing little projects like painting and furniture rearranging (one of Julie’s favorite things to do) over the past few years. This past summer, we decided we were ready for a bigger project and decided to tackle the bathroom. Nate did most of the work— he ripped out the old pink shower tile and replaced it with white subway tile. He also put down a new floor, installed a new pedestal sink, hung a new cabinet and fixtures, and painted the whole room a sky blue color. All of this hard work made a big difference but the last step in our bathroom makeover was the have our bathtub reglazed. Our tub was painted by the previous owners and the old paint had started chipping off. GROSS. The reglazing company came in yesterday, stripped the old paint and basically had our tub looking practically new within a few hours. We are thrilled. Check it out:

Finally, the bathroom makeover is done. Now, on to the kitchen (literally… I’m going to the kitchen right now to remove all of the cabinet doors so that I can clean, prime and paint them…).


Posted January 29, 2012 by Nate and Julie in Home Improvement

The Bathroom Project- Phase 2   Leave a comment

How did we spend the 4th of July holiday weekend? With food, family and several trips to Home Depot! It all started on Saturday. Nate’s parents Mark and Leslie travelled to Cincinnati to help us work on The Bathroom Project and to spend time with Millie (one of those activities was significantly more fun than the other). 

I’d rather hang out with her than work on a bathroom!

Nate had pretty much cleared out the bathroom of the old fixtures by the time his parents arrived. They arrived and assisted Nate in removing the old sink and vanity (the last of the “old” items).

after the sink was removed

 After we made a shopping list, Nate, Mark and I headed out to Home Depot. There, we picked out our pedestal sink, a new bath faucet, a matching faucet for the pedestal sink, a new bathroom mirror, white subway tiles, backerboard, and additional other supplies we would need for The Project. Back at home, we enjoyed a visit from the Louisville Perkinses (Chris, Melissa and two of the cutest kids in the world).  Together we played with the kids, had lunch and got to catch up. It was great seeing them! Once they left, it was back to work. The goal for the weekend was to prepare the walls for painting and tiling. Backerboard was measured, cut, and put up. Holes were patched. Men were sweating (did I mention the guys were doing the cutting outside in the nearly 90 degree weather?).

hard workers!!

After a lot of work, we nearly met our goal. The one big snag along the way had to do with the “old” bath fixtures. We were hoping it would be easy to upgrade to the shiny new fixtures we  picked up at Home Depot, but, alas, our old house is fighting to keep the old ones. So, we have to call a plumber this week to have the bath faucet upgraded professionally. And, while we wait for the professional, we have to wait to put up the backerboard along that part of the tub wall. 

almost all of the backerboard is up!

No biggie. We’ll get there. And once that’s done, we can tile. Then all we’ll have left to do is grout and seal the wall tiles, paint (we picked out a great light blue shade), put down new floor tiles (they’re gray with blue flecks that will look great with the paint color), grout and seal the floor tiles, install the sink, hang the mirror and wall cabinet… and several other things. We’re trending to be a bit behind schedule (maybe we’ll be able to catch back up) and a bit over budget (I doubt we’ll be able to cut costs as we move forward). Oh well— I’d rather go slow and do things right and spend a bit more and make this room something we love. It’s the smallest room in the house, but it sure is a big project. Can’t wait to get it finished!!

Posted July 4, 2011 by Nate and Julie in Home Improvement

A Special Visit, a Millie-Update and The Bathroom Project   Leave a comment

Wondering what’s been going on in the lives of the Keyse family? You’ve come to the right place! Here is a quick update:

Jen and Tony came to visit!!! We love when they are in town. Nate and I always enjoy spending time with them (can someone please remind me why we don’t live next door to one another??) and now that Millie is here, visits seem even more special. Tony and Jen are so fun to be around and we had a wonderful time together.  This was Jen’s second time seeing Millie and Tony’s first time meeting his niece. Millie (and her parents) loved having them here.

Uncle Tony and Millie

Aunt Sister (Millie's special name for Jen) and Millie

 Millie is now 2 months old! I can hardly believe it. The past two months have been wonderful. Millie is such a sweet, charming baby. Here is her 2 month update:

  • Millie is 10 lbs 9 oz, 23 inches long with a head circumference of 14 & 3/4 inches—- all of the measurements are right about the 50th percentile
  • Our pediatrician thinks Millie’s beautiful blue eyes are here to stay (quite a surprise since my eyes are brown and Nate’s are hazel, but we think her blue eyes are perfect and suit her well)
  • Millie is sleeping through the night (she has since 5 weeks old!) and usually sleeps 8-9 consecutive hours in her own crib.
  • Millie is soft-spoken (so far). Her coos are barely louder than a whisper (in other words, she is not taking after Mom in this regard)
  • Millie LOVES to hang out in her pack-n-play and look at the toy giraffes on her toy bar. This is one of her favorite activities!

    2 months old on June 29th!

So far, Millie has been a such a sweet and easy baby. We love having her as part of the family. I overheard Jennifer tell her that “Jesus made you so sweet for your Mommy” and I am so thankful that He did! I have a few more weeks left of maternity leave and am excited that I get to enjoy the rest of this time off with such a good girl.

In other news, The Bathroom Project (yes, I am capitalizing the title to emphasize the scope of this thing) is going well. Nate and I know there’s no going back now. Phase 1 is complete— all of the old pink tiles are gone! We are working on Phase 2 (removing the old vanity and medicine cabinet, preparing the walls for new tile and paint) this weekend and we hope to begin Phase 3 (install new tiling) as early as Monday (we’ll celebrate the 4th of July with some shiny new subway tiles instead of fireworks). Then all we’ll have left to do is grout and seal the tiles, paint the walls, install the new pedestal sink/ mirror/ cabinet… ok, I guess I’m getting ahead of myself. There’s a lot left to do, but we’re on our way! Nate and I are enjoying the project so far. We’re sure that after tackling this, we’ll feel more confident in taking on ANY future home improvement projects.

the first tile we removed!

Phase 1 has been completed!

The rest of the summer is quite busy for our family. We are looking forward to the continuation and eventual completion of The Bathroom Project, a quick trip to Las Vegas where Millie will get to meet her Great-Great Grandmother (that’s right, 2 greats!), and I go back to work (sniff, sniff). We’ll keep you updated about all these exciting events as they unfold. But for now, allow me to leave you with one last oh-so-adorable picture of Baby Millie (I know she’s the one you really want to hear about!)…

Posted June 30, 2011 by Nate and Julie in Home Improvement, Julie, Medical, Millie, Nathaniel

The First Day of the Rest of Our Lives   2 comments

I am not being dramatic when I say that today is the first day of the rest of our lives. Today is the day that Nate and I begin our bathroom remodel project! I have been wanting to remodel our bathroom since the day we moved in. Well, that’s not accurate. When we moved in our bathroom tile and tub were painted white. Now, you may be asking, why would someone paint their bathroom tiles and tub? Well we found out when I started to remove the paint last summer— pink tiles. Our house was built in 1959 (or ’58… I don’t remember which) right in the height of the pink bathroom craze. Apparently, we’re the first owners to want to change up the look. (I would actually be fine with the pink tiles, but some are cracked and in pretty bad shape, so we just decided to get rid of them all.) Here is a “before” picture of the bathroom.

And, while we’re replacing the tile, we decided to go ahead and remove the vanity that is currently in there, replace the sink, and re-paint the room for a full makeover. I really wanted to have the bathroom project done before Millie arrived, but, alas, time got away from us. It’s not too big of a deal to undertake this process with a baby in the house though. The bathroom is tiny and there’s only room for 1 person to chip away at the tile, so while one of us (me or Nate) works, the other person is on Millie-duty.

Here is how Millie and I spent our time while Nate set things up tonight. She played; I took pictures. Ah, I like Millie-duty. Anyway, neither Nate nor I have EVER done a home improvement project like this before. So, wish us luck! I will be excited to post “after” pictures soon (soon meaning in about 3-4 weeks… this is a HUGE project). I’ll leave you with a picture of the bathroom as it looked after being emptied and with a tarp down to protect the tub.

Is it bad that I already can’t wait for this project to be done??

Posted June 24, 2011 by Nate and Julie in Home Improvement, Julie, Millie, Nathaniel

Millie’s Room (part 1)   4 comments

After 2 fantastic baby showers (thanks, family and friends!), Millie’s room is full of all kinds of baby goodies. Everything is just about ready for her arrival. Want to see how cute her room turned out? Check out some pictures below:view from the door

 Millie’s room is the smallest room in the house, but since she will be the smallest person in the house (Major is about 15 lbs so he will be bigger for at least a couple of months), we decided to give her an appropriately sized room. We wanted to make the most of the small space by choosing simple furniture. All of the items were purchased separately to mix and match (that’s right, no custom-ordered furniture set for our baby) and we shopped sales as much as possible (we’re on a budget, people!).

First, the crib– a steal from Ikea. Also, you’ve already gotten a sneak peek of the wall decal from Etsy.

Next to the crib is the changing table. It’s already stocked with diapers and wipes.

Did you notice the little bird decal? We have 3 bird decals (also from Etsy) throughout the room. It’s one of my favorite little details! Pictures of the rest of the room are coming soon in another post (I think I was over-loading the blog!)

Posted March 7, 2011 by Nate and Julie in Home Improvement, Millie

Goodbye Old Friend   Leave a comment

We are on the cusp of week seventeen. Julie’s pregnancy is beginning to manifest itself in new ways. There is of course the ever growing child inside her that is slowly beginning to protrude from her midsection. But there are also other indicators, like when she woke Nate up in the middle of the night to tell him that pie “sounds really good right now”.  (Thankfully she did not ask him to go out and get some). There is also the home improvement kick she is on; a phenomenon scientists refer to as “nesting”.

Our first project to prepare our house for L’il Person was to replace our furnace.

This Old Furnace

The Beast

Our old furnace was old. I’m sure it was a fine specimen in its prime, but by today’s standards it was huge and inefficient and noisy and rusty. Last winter we had it serviced and were told that before long we would have holes and cracks in our heat exchanger and would soon be dead from CO poisoning. While we took this with a grain of salt because the fellow was probably hoping to sell us furnace, we had already talked about replacing it and decided to save up before next winter. At the beginning of this week Carr Electric came out and replaced our beast with a nice reasonably sized, super efficient new furnace. We can already tell there’s a major difference and are hoping the gas company will notice pretty soon.

Posted November 14, 2010 by Nate and Julie in Home Improvement