29 November 2011

Astrid Violet Beryl Mellor

I'm sure you will have guessed by now . . . Astrid has been born!

She was born last Tuesday at 2.31am and weighed 8lb. Everything went well and David, Astrid and I were home for lunch with Torin and my family on the same day!

She's doing really well - feeding lots and sleeping lots. Torin's being a very sweet older brother. He insists on kissing her goodnight on her hair, and calls her Baby Aled at the moment - I guess Astrid's a difficult word for the tongue of a two-and-a-half year old to master.

Hope you've all had a good week! 

15 November 2011

Keeping a handle on it.

A few people contacted me yesterday asking for a close up of the handles we used on our new alcove cupboard. I realise that it's not very easy to see what they're like from the picture I posted, so I've included a zoomed in picture below.

I bought our handles from Rossiters in Cardifff, which is one of my favourite shops, but I think I've also seen them at Bombay Duck.

I really like to change handles on cupboards, especially if they are just plain wood to begin with  - it's such an easy and relatively cheap way to give a piece of furniture a new lease of life! 

I've put together a quick round up of some other lovely handles that have caught my attention recently for you - hope you like them!

Butterfly ceramic door knob from here.

Dove ceramic door knob from here.

White shell flower door knob from here.

White dragonfly wildlife knob from here.

Still no news on the baby front - guess my due date has come and gone. Hurry up little one!

14 November 2011

A lovely shiny alcove cupboard.

Do you remember this picture from an August post? 

Well, it looks a little different now!

Paul, David's brother gave the cocktail cabinet a good home, and in return offered to build a tall alcove cupboard in its place, as he had done a similar project in his previous house. He finished the cupboard during last week and then David spent this weekend painting the wood and putting on the handles.

I'm so pleased with how it looks - it seems like it's always been there, and it's going to be so useful for us. At the moment all it has inside is some of the leftover wood, the IKEA standard lamp (for those of you who have read my to-do lists, I still haven't managed to get rid of this!), and our vacuum cleaner. When we've had a real think about how many hooks and shelves to put up in there, it should be able to contain the vacuum cleaner, our carpet shampooer, the iron and ironing board and a whole bunch of other stuff! Oh, it's going to be such a joy to walk into the kitchen and not see the vacuum cleaner in there, and to walk into our bedroom and not see the ironing board leaning up against our wardrobe! I love it when things have a place in which to be put away.

On another note, I think this is one of the few photos that I've taken recently that actually shows the true colour of the paint I've used in this room - do you like it?

11 November 2011

Can't stop looking at . . .

Each week, I'll be sharing with you something that has caught my eye. It may be a picture, blog, product or website.

Gosh, it seems it's been a while since I did one of these posts - sorry!

I've begun to turn my thoughts to Christmas presents this week. Last year I was very proud of myself because I made all of the gifts that we gave to people. I knew however, that wasn't really feasible this year though, as I'm due on Tuesday and a new baby, a two and a half year old and lots of little craft projects just wouldn't really work out very well! Even though I am going to be buying gifts, I am going to try and buy mostly handmade where possible, perhaps to ease my conscience a little - there really are some wonderful things around on sites like ETSY.

Elsewhere however, products and potential gifts that have caught my eye this week are all linked by the fact that they're spangly! I've found myself drawn to anything sparkly and vintage-looking, especially in mercury glass like these beautiful place name baubles from Cox & Cox:

Image from here.

I love the 1920s glamour of these storage jars - perfect for housing beauty essentials:

Image from here.

Admittedly, unless we won the lottery, this would probably never be given as a gift for anyone as it's quite pricey. However, I absolutely can't stop looking at this picture of this antique looking mirror. It would look amazing in my hallway. Sigh! I guess it'll have to stay on my pie in the sky gifts to myself list for now!

Image from here.

Hope you all have sparkly weekends - are you up to much? We're going to be painting the cupboard that my brother-in-law built in the alcove in our dining room. I think it's going to look great when it's finished as he's done such a good job on it already. I'll be sure to post some pictures of the finished article on Monday. 

Apart from that, it's the waiting game for us . . .

7 November 2011

Neat and tidy garden pots.

Today it finally stopped raining for long enough for me to get outside (briefly!) and take a photo of the greenhouse Torin and David put together the other day.

I didn't manage to take a true "before" picture, but you can see in the background of this picture, the plastic greenhouse that this wooden framed one has replaced.

At the moment, there are no plants in the new greenhouse, only empty pots and some of Torin's outdoor toys and garden tools. I'm sure this will change in the Spring though, as we're planning on trying to grow some of our own vegetables next year. We've done this before and really enjoyed the process - especially eating the fruits of our labour, but for some reason it didn't really happen this year. Now we've got a lovely new greenhouse to 'bring on' seedlings, I'm sure we'll manage to grow something, even if it's just a bit of rocket!

For now, the frame is made from treated fir tree wood, but I think I'll paint it in the Spring at the same time as I paint the shed - have a peek here if you want to see the colour I'm thinking of using.

3 November 2011

Can we build it? Yes we can!

A while ago my grandmother visited our house and after spending a while in our garden, as she's a keen gardener, she asked us if we'd like something a bit nicer to replace the plastic greenhouses we had outside our back door. My answer was obviously "Yes please!" but knowing that wooden framed greenhouses were expensive, I dismissed the idea as it wasn't really a priority. Anyway, my grandma got on the case and last week we received delivery of a small, wooden framed greenhouse that will fit perfectly against the wall outside our kitchen.

A couple of days ago, with Torin's help, David put it together, and it is now temporarily sitting against the wall of our bathroom. When he knew Daddy was going to be using a hammer and screwdriver, Torin wanted to wear his Bob the Builder construction hat, and used his own plastic tools to help out!

I'm now waiting for it to stop raining so much so I can actually go outside and move it (don't worry - with David's help), into the correct position against the opposite wall. Torin and I emptied the old plastic greenhouse and have stacked the pots that were being stored in there - I just want them to dry out a bit before I put them into the new greenhouse. I'll post some pictures as soon as it's in place and we've been able to put the pots back into it.

1 November 2011

A cosy landing at last!

The new carpet was fitted on the stairs and landing on Saturday and since then we've all spent a good while going up and down the stairs bare-footed - it feels so soft underfoot and it's made the stairs so quiet! I felt so much more relaxed after putting Torin to bed tonight - this week has been the first time since spring last year, that our stairs haven't creaked loudly when I've been trying to creep down them after settling him. David and I love the new carpet, and Torin keeps saying "New stairs!" to anyone who comes to our door - including the postman and trick or treaters last night!

Now the tiles have been changed in the hallway, there is a new carpet on the stairs and landing, and the bannisters have been replaced and painted, the centre of our home really feels so much cosier! Even though the walls and woodwork need re-painting, I no longer feel like I need to apologise for the state of the area when people come round!

Here are some pics of the hallway, stairs and landing since the carpet has been laid - hope you like it as much as we do!

This is now what you see when you come in through our front door - you can see that we really need to re-decorate, but it's such an improvement on what we had before!

This is taken from Torin's bedroom doorway - you can see here and here what it looked like before. SO much better now! Don't the bannisters look great painted (thanks mum)!

This is the landing taken from our bedroom doorway - you can just about see the rib in the carpet from this picture - I really like the texture of this carpet. We really must replace the glass in the door of the spare room - at the moment we've got fabric hanging over it to disguise the horrible opaque panel, but we need to make it safer for Torin as this will become his room soon.

From here you can get a bit of an impression of how the whole space works together - the new tiles in the hallway, the new wooden and painted bannisters, and the carpet on the landing. So glad it's finally been sorted out!
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