Wednesday, December 29, 2010

seasons greetings!

Seasons Greetings from all (three) of us at sixth floor apartment!

I hope everyone had a very merry christmas!
{anyone still out there reading this thing?!}

I apologize for the lack of things have slowed down here in the renovation/decoration area of our lives. i realized that rome wasn't built in a day, and this apartment will not be HGTV ready...well...probably at all. {hello? david bromstad? please come knock on my door!}
I had to learn that i can't afford to buy everything at once. we are still missing many key pieces of furniture, we haven't fixed the things that we needed to fix (bathroom lights and bathroom sink--the "his" sink is still ka-put)

But looking back, a lot was done, it was a great experience and we learned A LOT. i mean, this place looked completely different, and i promise to try to post before & after photos as soon as the holidays are over.

looking forward to 2011, i (we) hope to:
  • buy a coffee table (so we don't have to eat standing at the kitchen counter)
  • buy an area rug (hopefully one that ollie won't pee on)
  • fix the bathroom sink
  • fix the bathroom lighs
  • renovate second bathroom
  • figure out how to get the 2nd room to be more "girl cave" less, "ollie's room"
  • decorate and make it seem more cozy and like "home"
  • blog more!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

feeling festive...

i don't know why it is, but i'm feeling very festive this year!
maybe it's the new apartment, maybe it's the kid (and by "kid", i mean ollie...a puppy)...but i'm actually looking forward to the holidays! so much so that i've already started decorating. =)
i was a little disappointed that we won't be getting a real tree this i'm pretty sure ollie will be eating the fallen needles, fallen ornaments, and trying to drink the water out of the tree stand. But we found a cute mini faux fir tree at target for like 18 buckaroos. not bad right?

i'm still looking for a few more decorations...and i'm looking for some sort of candle, plug in, wall flower, potpourri type thing that will give off the christmas tree smell!!! anyone have any ideas?

Friday, November 5, 2010

cables and cords...

back when we dubbed the second bedroom "erica's girl cave," we also decided it would also function as an office. so that is where the wireless internet stuff is....but with the lack of furniture, there's nothing to hide it behind or under or on...and since the room has now been renamed as "ollie's room"...that's a bad thing. wires and cords everywhere! not a good thing for a dog that likes to chew things. i looked online for options on how to hide cords, and found this bad boy...

{please excuse the bad quality iphone photo as well as ollie's pee pad}

here's a link to their website so you can see nice quality photos and information.
i read mixed reviews....some love it, some think it's a waste of money for a plastic box. but i was desperate, and 30 bucks wasn't really cause to go "cray cray" about the price, so i just bought one. it's fab. i'm still hoping to hide it behind/under something...once i find furniture.

check out the site...there's tons of nifty stuff.

i can't wait to show you the hideous thing nolan wants to display in our living room.
i cringe.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

let there be light: part four

wow. long time no blog!
seriously, i haven't loss momentum....just the funds. hahahaha. but don't worry, more posts will be popping up shortly. I just wanted to share our other floor lamp purchase from inspiration. This was the floor model (bleh) but i was over lamp shopping and didn't care at that point. what's so bad about floor model? well, the lamp that was working on the floor in the store, decided to burn out its bulbs the day we get it. and the funny thing is, it looked brighter in the store...i thought that the other lamps we bought wouldn't be bright enough so we bought was good enough. this one i thought would be's a bit dull. It's also not really the look i was going for....but since the room has now been deemed "ollie's room" and not my girl cave....oh well. without further adieu,

a lamp for ollie's room.
i swear that dog has too much stuff. it took over that small room, there's no room for a desk, or vanity or anything of mine.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

let there be light: part three

wow. i've been really slacking with blog posts lately. i guess things have been slowing down now that we've actually moved in....and run out of money. hahaha. i really didn't want to take any pictures of the place until i could do a big "TA-DA!!!" reveal like on all those HGTV shows i obsessed over. but i've come to realize that that is not going to happen for a while. we spent so much money on the major renovations that all the aesthetic stuff like rugs, lights, decorative elements would just have to wait. but don't worry, some new things are afoot...

the first being that we FINALLY got some floor lamps for this place!
i was lusting over these lamps at inspiration for awhile, but wanted to look around for a cheaper/more practical/bigger wattage alternative. i found none. at least none that i liked. so after months of stumbling in the dark we caved and went back for them. we bought 2 thinking one would definitely not be bright enough--we were wrong, one was good. but as with everything on sale at was FINAL SALE. but it's's more symmetrical this way:

Sunday, September 12, 2010

a house is not a home without a...

our couch we bought months ago from inspiration was FINALLY delivered on Friday, and i've got to say that i'm in loooooove. i will never again take a couch for granted. the color is perfect, it's comfy (but then again, anything would be more comfortable than the plastic chairs we've been using) and it's super light, which makes moving it a breeze!

the couch also came with a super long ottoman, which we will be using as a makeshift couch/daybed in my "girl cave"-now turned-into-ollie's room. i'm actually sitting on it right now as i keep ollie company while he sun bathes next to the window.

anyway, back to the couch. it's smaller than we were imagining (which is good) so we can start looking for things like an area rug, table, and maybe some side tables!!!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

MIA...only words

i haven't been posting lately....there's nothing to post about. STILL unpacking. i think we win the award for world's slowest unpackers/move-in-ers. a lot of it is just that we need to BUY things to put stuff in. and you know...pretty storage is not cheap. i caved and started buying sorta el cheap-o plastic bins. i really really wanted to stay away from them, but seriously...even those are tugging at my purse strings.

in other news....where oh where is our couch?!?!? seriously. nolan called today after we found out that mr. & mrs. lau's (haha!) couch is being delivered THIS SATURDAY. um, hellooo inspiration, our couch was on the same boat/ship/container. where is our couch?!?! so they tell nolan that the couch is on the island, but then proceeded to say "don't get mad now (hmmm....i guess a lot of other people are already mad?) but the next available delivery time for your area is september yadda yadda." WHAT??!?! so....we're waiting till september for our couch.

and....i have a sneaking suspicion that my "girl cave" is going to be more "ollie's room" than girlie lounge. for a little dog, he has so much stuff!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Monday, August 2, 2010

slowly but surely...

things are coming together.
slowly but surely,
boxes are dissapearing and more floor is visible!

this past weekend i went on cleaning & organizing mode. the closets are done, and we purchased some nice bins and things to actually have places to put things! as boxes get broken down, the fine soot/dust that came with all that building flies everywhere!

dry swiffer.
wet swiffer.

there has to be an easier way! AND i can still feel that soot on my feet! when will it end?!?!
i curse the floors and all that dust.

so here are some of the latest updates to the abode:

media console...
waiting for the glass door to be put in, and for the mess to be cleaned up.

my girl cave closet:

i get my own closet, because nolan kicked me out of the master bedroom closet...

linen closet:

i think we need more linens!
and my few anthropologie purchases:

sad the E is crooked...

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

likes & gripes...

this post is dedicated to lori....because who knows when the next coffee night will really be.
when we started this whole renovation process we were so, so, SO naive. i don't even think that at this point you could consider us "seasoned" re-modelers...but i wish we knew then what we know now....the BIGGEST things i wish we knew (seriously, we knew NOTHING)

oh we were so clueless, yet full of hope....

1. everything takes A LOT longer than you expect.

2. everything costs A LOT more than you expect.

3. there are A LOT more problems than you would expect.

so i thought i would compile a list of the things that i'm super pleased with and things that are not so much.

let's start with the not-so-much:
{rain shower heads} over rated. i don't even use it. it's kind of like all or nothing. you're either fully under the water (water pouring down your face...i feel like i should wear a visor just so i can open my eyes and not get water in them!) or only slightly under water and slightly freezing...i guess there's a reason why people get those body spray things w/those shower's not a fancy hoity-toity-thing (ok, maybe it is a little) but a keep-warm necessity thing. but if you insist on getting one because it looks super cool (like i did) get a hand held one too for practicality...mount it high so it can double as a regular shower head for you to use when you realize the rain shower head isn't all that great.

see? it would be perfect if the rain shower head was in the area where nolan is standing...

{cabinet upgrades} SO WORTH IT. too bad we didn't get any. seriously, our cabinets have so much dead space it's ridiculous. lazy susans, pantry pull-outs, pull out drawers...worth their weight in gold. too bad they cost more than gold. my advice? find those local people (i don't know why but they all seem to be chinese) that do cabinets for cheap. don't go to home depot/lowes because you're super picky about cabinet color (like we were) so you can afford the upgrades. also....i don't know what they do if you go with those local companies, but if you do go w/home depot or lowes...{TIP for ya:} it is SO much cheaper to buy your hardware from their hardware aisle than it is to order say, thomasville cabinet handles. (HUGE RIP OFF!)

this bag of handles ended up being almost half the price of what it would've cost to order handles w/the cabinets.

{sliding closet doors} i hate that there's always going to be parts of the closet that's not accessible. i hate that. i grew up with bi-fold doors. some may find them old fashion or ugly (nolan) but i love opening them up and seeing the entire length of the closet. that may just be my opinion...."personal preference" (i hate that answer!!!)

{lighting} i hate relying on lamps. invest in ceiling lights.

{medicine cabinets} while i looooove my bathroom. especially my pride and joy...the only thing i insisted on....i do miss having a medicine cabinet. easy access.

{dark, wood floors} omg! shows ALLLLL the dust! and so hard to keep nice and clean. you gotta vacuum, sweep, swiffer, then wet swiffer. i'm gonna be the eternal cleaning lady. go with light colored flooring, people! you probably will have to go through the same cleaning steps, but at least the dust doesn't show as much.

sigh....everything my mom was saying is coming back to haunt me. hahaha. she's all about practicality and i was all about looks. moms are always right.

let's move on to the LIKES, shall we?

{shelves} i never thought i could be in love with shelving, but i am. i literally stood in the bathroom staring at the simple shelving we had put in and smiled like an idiot for about 5 min. when we moved in, all the closets all had this type of shelving:
image source:

who knows how long they were there but they felt old and sticky. you know that soft sticky rubbery feeling things get when its just....old? i hated it. we kept it in certain small closets, but replaced them in the important areas. i love the linen closet shelves. i love our clothes closet shelves, and i love the entryway shoe "closet" shelves. i love the shelves. so simple, basic, yet i love them so.

{tiled mirror} sometimes you gotta fight for something you want. and although i miss the easy access of a medicine cabinet, i love looking at that mirror.

ollie makes an appearance!

{lighting} i love our kitchen and bathroom lighting. thanks randy! i like the cable track lighting...
nolan approves too...of course he does, he picked those.

{bedding} i LOVE our new bedding. i don't want to get out of bed in the morning. so soft and comfy....cost-per-use really does help justify the investment. ;p spend the extra $$ on the things you'll use everyday. that's what i say at least ;p

{good contractors} we've dealt with both....the kind you love working with...and "the other kind". the-other-kind did our bathroom shower, all the tiles in the unit, and....i'm not sure what else. in terms of quality, the work is good. but i'm not even sure what happened but nolan refuses to talk about it because it makes him super angry. to this day i still don't really know what happened...every time he starts trying to tell me about it he gets super angry and just stops and says nevermind...what's done is done, but we'll never work w/that guy again. the contractor we have now is amazing. so easy to work with. does good work, and you just feel comfortable working with him. you don't always have to worry that you're being ripped off or anything like that. he did all our kitchen cabinets, our shelving, light installation, and a bunch of other things. it's fun to come home to find new things that are installed/works/painted. its great.

i'm sure i'll find more likes & gripes, so stay tuned for more...

Monday, July 26, 2010

let there be light: part two

if you remember back to the very beginning, we found out that we didn't need to only rely on floor lamps for the entire can read about it here. many, many, MANY months later, we finally have lighting installed! hallelujah! no more stumbling around in the dark relying on only the kitchen and bathrooms for light.

as you can see, we're still living in a world of chaos...many things still in boxes, without a home...i also am not entirely thrilled with the placement of the surround sound speakers...damn you sprinkler systems!!! and if you look at the other side of the room---more boxes, rolling racks, and our two super UNcomfy chairs while we wait for our couch to come in. (just got word that it won't reach the shores of hawaii until august 15..or was it 18th?) i think we better invest in more comfy temporary seating....

also in progress are our closets! YAY! i'm sick of the rolling racks!

master bedroom closet

bathroom linen closet

my closet

can't wait to say goodbye to these rolling racks!
honestly, i'm not the neatest person in the world...far from it actually...but the mess is really getting to me! i can't wait for the place to start feeling like a "home" and less like a storage unit!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

a communist mess

no, i'm not going to be getting political. i'm actually talking about our condo. security is ridiculous! i guess in terms of our safety, it's ridiculously good. but in terms of freedom to do what you like, it's ridiculously.....ridiculous. they see all. hear all. know all. Nolan is already known as "the infamous nolan" due to things like our floods, silly amounts of contractors, not knowing the rules about these contractors (must be insured, must come during set days and hours, etc), and even where you dump certain types of trash. sigh.
this morning i left for work and found a huge note on the door from security (why not slip it under the door like all other notices?! why did they have to tape it up to the door for all other sixth floor residents to see?!? i felt like hester prynne with a scarlet parking lot violation sewn to my chest) about guest parking is only till 2am and if you did not sign up for overnight guest parking, your car will be towed next time. so attention nolan's friends: no parking in our building if you plan on staying out past 2am. which is every no parking in the building.
these guys are like the danny mccoys of the building...only much less attractive. wouldn't that be great? danny mccoy looking security gaurds?
and about the mess.....
the place is a mess. still unfinished closets---clothes everywhere. sinks still leak---brushing your teeth in the kitchen sucks. using the bathroom in the middle of then night then having to stumble in the dark to the kitchen to wash your hands (because we also didn't install lighting yet) also sucks.
debby downer posts, also suck.
i apologize.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

can't get out of bed...

with sheets this soft!!!

i've been looking for new bedding for two reasons. the first being the chocolate brown comforter doesn't really go with the color scheme of the new apartment. the second being that nolan decided to wash the comforter cover with the white sheets, which resulted our sheets turning into a weird pinky brown hue. i've been searching online almost everyday, but couldn't seem to find anything pretty enough for me, but manly enough for nolan. sigh. and then there's nolan's affinity for hotel collection bedding (which he learned from kristen...he blames all his brand snobbery on kristen). I had seen this collection online but thought it seemed too boring. too plain. but when i was in the store, the display mixed this collection with pillows from the HC spa collection. the decorative pillow (i bought one) matches our paint color PERFECTLY. and the best part? it was all on sale...AND in addition to the sale price, it was buy one get one 50% off! so i bought 4 things and made 2 separate transactions! the deal was a steal!
i only wish i had bought one more decorative pillow...

but it's seriously SO soft i have trouble getting out of bed in the morning. definitely worth the investment :)

i only wish it didn't wrinkle so much. i'm super tempted to iron the bedding. but i hate ironing. so i most likely will not iron it.

in other news....

still living out of boxes
the place is a mess

Monday, July 12, 2010

moving day!

We officially moved into our sixth floor apartment, on Saturday--July 10!
that's pretty much 5 months after we closed. who would've thought it would take THIS long?!?!
we stupidly thought we'd be moved in my april! hahahahaha. i laugh just thinking about it. i laugh thinking about how much we thought we were going to spend too! i remind myself about those hgtv/diy shows where people attempt to flip houses and then go into debt. thank god we didn't get that far!
anyhoo...we hired a moving company, they brought a GINORMOUS truck and five guys. they walk into our place, saw the boxes, and were like "THAT'S IT?!?!?!"

needless to say the actual move went pretty quickly. it was the cleaning and unpacking that is proving to be dificult and lengthy...especially since our closets haven't been worked on yet. boo. rolling racks it is!
i hate to be a debbie downer/negative nancy but i miss the old place. i think it's just because i'm getting frustrated living half out of boxes, rolling racks and finding things that just ain't so great...
let me point them out for you in the event that it may steer you away from certain decisions...
1. our bathroom sinks leak. waiting for them to get fixed, and only using the kitchen sink kinda sucks.
2. rain shower head....very nice! BUT make sure you get it mounted either from the ceiling or somehow get it further away from the wall then we did. it's awkward standing so close to the wall. and it's kinda weird to have to be completely under it, as opposed to coming at an angle as w/regular shower head--sometimes you just don't want your head to get wet! thank god for our hand held shower head that's mounted high enough that it acts as a regular shower head too!
3. parking tight. i miss my huge single stall....
4. dead space....the kitchen is filled w/dead space! it may look like we have a lot of cabinets, but a lot of it, you (I) need a ladder to reach. not very efficient. everything is narrow and deep...again, not very efficient. if only we could splurge on things like a pull-out pantry or lazy susans. but they charge you an arm and a leg! damn you thomasville/home depot!
ok, i'm done with my rant.
more pictures to come!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

it has begun...

our pilgrimage to our new condo has begun...
while everyone was bbq-ing and watching fireworks, i was cleaning, packing, and moving all weekend. thank god it was a 3-day weekend!
Saturday was spent cleaning the new condo--there was just so much fine soot/dust all over the place from all the construction going on. six hours of cleaning and 2 home depot runs later, the condo looked more like a home than a construction zone. thankfully, nolan's parents helped me with the cleaning since nolan was in michigan for his college roommate's wedding. i don't even want to think about how long i would have been there if i had to do it all alone!!
Sunday and Monday were spent packing up our current place....
packing and disassembling things...the place is a mess right now as you can see:

we currently have no tv or internet...we are dying! hahahaha.

Friday, July 2, 2010

new couch!!!

i cannot tell you how ecstatic i was when nolan decided to sell his black leather couch! it was a super comfy couch, but it just screamed, "bachelor pad!"---have you ever seen the episode of sex & the city where harry brings charlotte to his bachelor pad? i don't know why but that's what his furniture brings to mind.
anyway, through the magic of craigslist, a young engaged couple are now the proud owners of a black leather sectional...thanks guys! the only problem was finding a new couch! i thought we jumped the gun by selling the couch without knowing if we'd find a suitable replacement that met all the requirements (comfy, budget-friendly, nice, etc.). It was a much more difficult task than i expected it to be. we would either disagree, or it would be too expensive (hello $15,000 couch!), or it would be too big.

i had almost lost all hope when we stumbled upon this couch:

he loved it, i loved was a good size, comfortable, great neutral color, and a great price!!! i said "i like it!" nolan said "i really like it" i thought he was joking...did we really just agree on a couch??? but of course the car salesman in him HAD to try to negotiate....which is how we found out about the mega 4th of july sale they were going to have, so we waited.

and today w/my $100-off coupon in hand, went marching in to inspiration, to go purchase our new couch!!!! probably the easiest sale the guy had all day. (side note: our sales guy asked me how to spell "elevator"...yikes.)

happy as a clam w/my receipt & delivery information sheet

what we're going to do w/that ginormous ottoman is beyond me. maybe it'll go in my "girl cave", but nolan kinda likes it right where it is...hmmm...

what are your plans for the 3 day weekend?
i'll be on cleaning lady duty all weekend cleaning up the place to prepare for the big move!!!

hope you all have a fantastic 4th of july weekend!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


the flooring is installed!!!!
aside from a small 3/4 piece that was missing and needs to be ordered, everything is finished!
the past few times we went to the unit was during the early evening and i couldn't get a good feel for the flooring with the paint. so we went on sunday to see it in broad daylight. and it looks much better in the light of day.

the paint looks almost white in this picture!

the one thing i really can't stand though, are the 3/4 rounds all along the walls. i'm totally not a fan of this look, but nolan said it was our only option. oh well. i guess i can live with it.

In Other News...
We've sold the couch, coffee table, chaise lounge...and the tv & tv stand will be leaving us as well.
We found the perfect (for us) couch right when i had given up hope that we'd find something!
Next up is lighting installation (living room) and shelving (shoe closet & all closets)

we have to start packing up our current abode...we'll begin showing it to potential renters this week! i can't believe after all these months, we're finally on our way to actually living in our new place!!!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

we have a moving date!!!

a tentative moving date that is.

the moving company nolan wants to use only takes military family moves...but made some sort of exception for us since our move will be pretty minimal, but the stipulation is that we HAVE TO move on a saturday.

this week? nope. too soon.
next week? nope. i'm in a wedding.
the week after that? nope. nolan's in a wedding.
when will it ever be OUR wedding?....<'d that get in there?!? cece did you hack my blogger?
so it'll be the week after that!!!!
i better start packing and looking for big boxes!

in other news...our flooring should be done tomorrow, and then we begin work on shelving and all the feng shui necessities.

and i'm super excited to say that nolan is getting rid of his bachelor pad furniture!!!
*happy dance! happy dance! happy dance!*
i can't tell you enough how happy i am. but now we need to scramble to find replacement furniture.

i shall leave you with a picture of us jetting off to las vegas...

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

granite installed!

The granite is installed, and looks great :)
This is our bathroom...the countertop is actually marble that we found on sale at Selective Stone.
If you ever go there, ask for Rexie, she's great! Everyone there is so nice and helpful though.
Our lighting is Sonneman tubo lighting that i saw online and fell in love with but when it came to shipping, it was ridiculous to ship to hawaii...with a broken heart we went to local lighting stores, where i found them!!! picked them up at Lighting Concepts (love that place!) one of the fixtures outer glass casing was cracked so they have a replacement for us coming in. this is our kitchen granite. it's called wild sea, verde...or something like that. i can't remember now. AFTER it was installed nolan admitted to me that he didn't like it when i had picked it out, but upon seeing it in our kitchen he really likes it. (thank god!)

Then on friday we went to lowes to pick up some track lighting...which was all sold out.
note to self: buy when you see it because it may not be there when you go back!!!!
we were accompanied by our little monster:

"let me out!"

Thursday, May 27, 2010

seriously?!?! ***EDITED***

so the granite people finished up today...
we went by the unit tonight to make sure there were enough boxes of underlayment for the contractor who will be installing our tile in the kitchen and bath tomorrow...
i walk into the bathroom to check out the countertop that was just installed (it was very to come) and i turn to see that there is murky water just sitting in the shower. not draining. there is a weird noise coming from the toilet. there is also water on the ground in the other bathroom. WTF?!?

first of all...
the granite workers used our new toilet. thank you very much for christening our brand new bathroom. there was a reason we left the plastic wrapping keeping the lid latched down...
all the other contractors had the common courtesy of using the un-remodeled bathroom. thank you for taking off the wrapping and using the bathroom.
AND...maybe before you used the brand new, still wrapped up toilet, maybe you should've checked inside the tank area for other wrapping because now it looks like there's a huge piece of mushy waterlogged cardboard in there.
thanks so much.

as our other contractor assumes that you (granite people) must've tried to empty your murky buckets of watery granite glue (my terminology, of course) down our shower drain...our BRAND NEW unused shower...thanks for that as well.
were you THAT LAZY that you couldn't at least walk it over to the other shower to dump it down? did you really have to use our beautiful brand new, unused shower?!?!?
didja? didja?!?!?
i guess you did.
thanks so much.

i guess you guys did a not so bad job (as far as i can tell) aside from you trashing our new toilet and shower. maybe it was our fault that we did not specify NOT to use things that look brand new and is still taped up. but i guess we couldn't because we don't speak chinese, and you don't speak english. language barrier aside though...why??? WHY?!?!?!

LF Marble
thanks. maybe i'll be seeing you on yelp.

note to self: create a yelp account.
so nolan called to complain and eventually got to talk to the VP of the company who spoke perfect english. she said that they don't use "glue" of any sort but would further investigate the situation. she got back to him and said that the men used the shower to was their hands but as soon as the water started running, water started backing up....

Monday, May 24, 2010

costly kitchen...goodbye window

notice anything different?
we drywalled over the windows....
what?!?! why would we do that?
well, feng shui reasons that we have to have a something solid behind the stove.
something about the stove cannot have an open back....
strange. i know.
it's all coming together.
granite countertops should be installed soon, then onto the tile then wood floors!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

costly kitchen...cabinet progress day three

what a difference a day makes!
the majority of the work is done, and our new lights are up as well!!!
nolan approves

looks so different without flash...

i love the lighting! nolan picked it out at Lighting Concepts
if you're looking for lighting, definitely check this place out!!!

cabinets:thomasville pulls: lowes (i forget the brand) lighting: lighting concepts