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Sorry for the influx of house posts lately- that’s what’s taken over our lives as of late.  Not that we ever had a set agenda on the blog anyway, but we try for a balance.  We’ll get back to life as normal soon, I hope!

Very, very happy to report that both bathrooms (master and powder) are not only wallpaper-free but painted to boot! The method that I was using (described here) wound up working well- at least, good enough that I didn’t try a different way. And while I’m not jumping up and down to do it again, it wasn’t as bad as I expected. (I KNOW this is because our wallpaper was applied correctly and we only had one layer of the stuff.  We were lucky.)

So to catch up- once I scraped off the remaining wallpaper (after hours and hours and hours and hours…), I washed the walls and then applied Kilz oil-based sealer/ primer. I used the odorless because there are no windows for circulation in either bathroom but it was far from odorless.  This stuff wasn’t the easiest to put on- it was super thick and I couldn’t use a roller. Glad I only needed one coat.

Starting to look like a real room!

Two coats of paint on the ceiling (which had never been painted before- a recurring theme in this house…) and then it just came down to paint- I went with Sherwin Williams Perfect Greige color but had Behr color match it.  (We’ve gone through 17 gallons of paint so far in this house… that adds up to A LOT so we’ve had to use a more wallet-friendly paint.)

It’s far from perfect, and I still have some touch ups to do, but it’s sooo much better than where we were a month ago.

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One thing I learned between the master and the powder room was to take the time to sand down the drywall before priming it.  I did this quickly in the master and took my time in the powder room and WOW did it make a difference.  The walls in the powder room look much smoother- although for some reason, the primer gave a texture to it also.  If the master bath really bothers me over time, I’ll probably go back to sand and repaint it.  But it adds character, right…? (AKA I’m lazy.)

Just a reminder to what we were working with before: DSC_0022image3

Big improvement, no?  Next up: painting that vanity, swapping out the faucet and light fixture (currently being done RIGHT NOW! pictures soon!), and rehang the mirror above the sink. Hoping the next time I update you on this room it will be pretty much complete!image4

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Our kitchen is still under construction, believe it or not.  Regardless, one major way that I feel settled into a place is to stop getting takeout and start cooking dinners myself.

The meals I’ve been cooking lately haven’t been all that complex or anything special, as I can only do so much in our kitchen- oh, and Luca thinks as soon as I start chopping something or turn on the oven is the best time to sprint up the stairs (just waiting for the gate I bought to be installed… cough cough T :) ).

I typically cook the bulk of dinner during his nap time, but I always seem to have little things to cook or finish right before Tom gets home.  I’ve been looking for some simple recipes lately and stumbled upon one I’ve made twice already and thinks it’s so easy and so good. (Seriously, the crock pot and / or meals I can throw in the oven and walk away are the freaking best.)

Chow- Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

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Photo Source: Chow.com

I’ve made this recipe a few different ways- with no cream, with plain greek yogurt instead of cream, and tonight I kind of tweaked it a lot.  I used a honeycrisp apple, because that’s all I had, and I realized I didn’t have any chicken broth.  Instead I used bouillon cubes and water and it was totally fine.  I also used butternut and acorn squash because that’s what I had on hand and it still tasted great.

So, if you’re in the mood for a hearty and filling (but healthy!) winter soup, this one gets a thousand stars from me!

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Tom has written on here about our love for the Wonder Weeks.  I know it’s not for everyone, but we’ve found the Wonder Weeks to be pretty spot on with Luca.  Like we’ve said before- it doesn’t change anything, but it helps us understand the potential reasons why he may not be his normal self.

With all that being said, Luca recently started his LAST leap- hard to believe we’ve already gone through 9! And as par for the course, he has been a little ‘off’- clingy, cranky, and not sleeping or eating well.

Sunday afternoon, Luca and I went to a holiday party with our friends from playgroup.  He spent the two hours we were there running around the house and wore himself out.  Surprisingly, he didn’t fall asleep on the way home.  I really wanted him to take an afternoon nap, even just a short one, so that he could recharge for dinner.  (He’s been doing so-so at dinnertime, and I find he’s much more likely to try food when he’s not tired.)

Oh, and side note- he’s still taking two naps a day for the most part.  His afternoon nap is hit or miss, but I still always try to put him down for one. While sometimes it’s difficult to plan our day with two naps (not that we have much planning to do, but you know) I still love the schedule that he’s on right now.  It’ll probably change tomorrow now that I’ve said that, but here’s hoping he takes two naps a day for a long time!

Okay, so back to the story.  I bring him home and immediately put him down for a nap.  I was hoping for anything, but at least a 45 minute nap would be great here.  I could get dinner ready and he could reset himself from the party.  Fast forward- after sleeping for an hour and 20 minutes, I asked Tom to go wake him up so he didn’t sleep too late and have trouble falling asleep for the night. Tom goes to grab him and comes back down empty handed. “I can’t wake him up!”

He then handed me his phone with this picture displayed:

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(Sorry it’s dark- it’s for a reason, of course)

I don’t know if I’ve ever seen him look so cozy and peaceful while sleeping. I love moments like this so much- this picture just makes me melt into a giant ball of mush.

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My bulldozer, I mean my son, made me nervous.  I was really looking forward to Christmas this year, as last year he was still so little (only 4 months old!) that I’m pretty sure he didn’t know what was going on. However, I expected Luca to go nuts and rip down our tree and all the decorations.

Browsing pinterest one night, I found the trendy toddler christmas tree- essentially, a felt tree with felt ornaments that’s just a toddler’s size.  I figured it was perfect- I wasn’t planning to put up our tree until just before Christmas to minimize the time I had to spend tearing him away from the tree.

So, I set out to JoAnn Fabrics and purchased my $9 worth of felt.  I spent one evening cutting out the tree and various ornament shapes. image3 copy

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I was excited to hang it on our wall for Luca to play with and decorate. I purchased three different type of wall mounting squares the next day and geared up to hang it.  (No push pins or nails on our freshly painted walls, please!)

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And I was left with this- so cute, right?? Luca played with it for a whopping 8 seconds before taking off to dump the straws out of a kitchen drawer.  We went out for the afternoon and came home to this:image1 (1) copy 3

Whomp whomp. I wound up using the velcro style wall mounts and so far it’s up.  Oh, and I caved and put up our tree. And of course, Luca couldn’t care less about it.  Such is life!