Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Kitchen mini renovation

This dear little house that we're living in is getting very small for us and for a while now we've been dreaming about selling it. Before selling it though, we've felt like some renovations needed to be done. As we want to sell it our budget was as small as possible, so we tried to find cheper options with still keeping the quality good. We were so lucky to have my brother and my sister-in-law over as they have a lot of experience in renovating and they did most of the work for us. Lucky, lucky, lucky.

Here's what we started with. Beautiful bright yellow bench top, I did grow to like it so I was a little sad to see it dissappear. Creamy colour cabinets with plastic handles and grey walls. I wanted to get new doors for the cupboard but as we started to search for new ones we realised that these ones were once custom made to fit here. It meant that there were no doors in any shops that would have been the same size to ours. With grinding teeth I had to let go of that vision and get use to the idea that these creamy doors would stay.

We then went to a salvage yard to see if we could find anything that would help us with the renovations. A salvage yard is a place that sells anything left over from someone's renovations and selling it very cheap. We found almost straight away the long white tiles for the wall and the grey floor tiles for the bench. We saved over 70% in cost by getting these tiles from salvage yard compared to getting them from a tile shop.

Because the yellow bench top was in such good condition we, and with we I mean my brother and my husband, started to lay the grey tiles down on top of it. And as the grey tiles were originally floor tiles, they are very strong and thick. I was very happy with that. Who would have thought to put tiles on the bench? Not me for sure, but my brother had done it twise and had been very happy with the result so I thought why not try it. Now I love it!

For a whole week, my kitchen was in our laundry as the real kitchen was construction site. It was so exciting to see and learn how to renovate this kitchen.

Here's the end result. In the end we changed the handles and the difference in huge compared to what we started with. The grey bench makes the creaminess of the cupboards so mild that I can totally stand it now. So with very little money spent our kitchen got a nice makeover.

Next, the bathroom makeover...

Monday, 2 September 2013

Artsy birthday party

 And so she turned 3. I can't believe how time has gone so fast and what an individual she's become. She's been looking forward to this party for months now so I wanted her to enjoy. We had a big artsy birthday bash for her with all her friends there.

 Let's start with the food shall we. We had jelly cups as paint cups, perfect party food for kids party as they absolutely love jelly. The paint brushes were a hit too, you can find the recipe I used from HERE. The crayons gave me most work. I loved the idea though so I had to make them. I got the idea from HERE, but instead of pretzel sticks I used chocolate bisquits and instead of candy melts I used coloured white chocolate. The best part is that you can actually print the labels if you don't feel like making your own. For the printable crayon labels go HERE.

Then I thought we'd have an artsy activity at the treat table, so we made biscuits in different shapes, put just white icing on it and got the kids to decorate them.

I got a bit carried away with decorating the biscuits, but it really was a lot of fun. The bread stick pencils were a bit sad sight, a classic example of what happens when you get a last minute great idea that doesn't work out as well as you saw it in your head.

Just like on her previous birthdays, I wanted to have cupcakes instead of a cake. I think cupcakes work so well with little kids, they are rather easy to eat and they are not very big. Yes the fact that I'm not a very big cake person had something to do with this decision as well. The cupcakes worked great on this occasion and the icing was plenty of messy which was part of the theme.

I made 4 art smocks so that the kids wouldn't get too much paint on themselves. Emma had hers on the whole time where as the other 3 were going around to who ever was having a turn at painting. On Emma's art smock under the picture it says "Allowed to get messy". I realised after the party was finished that I don't have any pictures where you could see that text, what a bummer.

We emptied Emma's room and made that into an art studio. There we had a painting stand, a spot to draw with chalks, playdough and a necklace spot where all the kids were able to make THESE necklaces. Also my amazing sister-in-law painted cute butterflies to all the little cheaks.

Of course we also had to have some funny frames to get funny pictures of our little people, and the big ones as well. All the frames were made of cardboard, so very good recycling and low cost way here.

As a party favor all the children got to take home a paint bucket. I spray painted old formula tins (milk powder tins) and my brother drilled some holes for the handles, great recycling again. Inside the paint tins was some stickers, cute colouring sheets from made by joel, a big chalk and tiny watercolours that I brought back from Finland. Cute ay?

Happy 3rd birthday my darling baby girl!
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