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Under Cabinet Lighting

While living in our apartment, we put up some inexpensive under-cabinet lighting from Ikea.  When we moved into our house we brought them with us, but only installed two of the lights because of the arrangement of the cabinets.  The ugly black cord hung down and the big plug was an eyesore.  I disguised it the best I could with command hooks and cord covers, but this post from Thrifty Decor Chick made me long for integrated under-cabinet lights.  When I mentioned it to Bradley, he enthusiastically agreed.

This weekend, we worked on putting up three more lights and running the cords up between the cabinets and through the top of the cabinet over the microwave to the plug that is conveniently out of sight.  Then we took it a step further: we used one of the remote-controlled plugs that we have on all of the lamps in our house.  (We use these unattractive but useful plugs because not a single outlet in our house is switched, boo)  All of our downstairs lamps are on the same frequency, so with one simple push of a button we are able to turn on four lights in the dining room, three lamps in the living room, the Christmas tree, and now all five of the under-cabinet lights.

It looks so nice now, especially with the ambient light from the new fixture over the sink.  Bradley loves it because he has an obsessive war against overhead lighting:)

Guest Bedroom Headboard

Back in the spring, I was bummed that the full/queen headboard I had fixed up for the guest bedroom was an eyesore because it was truly a queen size after-all.  I was at Goodwill a couple of weeks ago and ran across another full size headboard at Goodwill for only $15.  It is about 4″ less wide than the old headboard, so it will actually line up with and attach to the bed frame.  I thought it would work really well in the guest room.  That is, once it was no longer fire-engine red.  Bradley had to go back with me later, because of course it wouldn’t fit in my car:)

I used the primer I had used on the kitchen cabinets.  Then I painted the headboard Canyon Echo by Glidden.  It is a very pale grey.  I am still working towards this color palette:

I also found a small round side table at Goodwill for $5.  It was a little banged up, but I glued and puttied and painted it right up.  I was able to sell the old headboard and the old side table/ file stand to get them out of the way.  I couldn’t be more pleased with the new furniture.  The scale of both the headboard and side table just work so much better in the room.

New Lighting

I have the MOST wonderful husband ever!  I came home to find that when Bradley ‘left’ for work this morning, he actually just went to Starbucks until I left to throw me off his sneaky plan.  He spent the whole day doing things around the house for me.  He vacuumed and made the bed.  He bought and programmed a GPS for my new car (including working for an hour on and subsequently returning one that was defective).  He also installed a light over the kitchen sink that I had ordered.  My kitchen cabinet reveal shows how it has been for a couple of months now.

Before:

After:

It’s not the perfect light, but I searched high and low to find something that could tuck in behind the curtain or curve up and out above the curtain.  Everything else I found either wouldn’t curve out enough to clear the curtain or was too wide.  It provides a nice, soft ambient light and there are no more hanging wires, so I will claim success.

He also installed my birthday present – wall lamps for our bedroom.  I fell in love with this arched lamp from Pottery Barn, but couldn’t justify spending the money when we had bedside lamps.  They came with Bradley when we got married.  They were not at all our style and I disliked them, but he had sentimental attachment to them and still liked them.  So I left it alone.

Before:

They dominated the bedside tables.  They look like Greek columns.  They have a cream and gold crackle/textured finish.  Nothing even remotely like the rest of our house.  But now it looks like this:

I LOVE them!  And I love that the beside tables can be completely cleared off when the decluttering bug bites me.

How sneaky is he!  Even if he wasn’t able to hide his purchase of my birthday gift from me, he was able to install them by surprise.  He is my favorite and definitely a keeper;)

Kitchen Faucet is In!

Bradley was on the ball yesterday and got the new kitchen faucet installed.  He sent me pictures of his progress throughout the morning:

I love it!  We had one extra hole left by the old sprayer so we bought a cover to go over it, but I think it looks fine.  And now that we have an integrated soap pump, that is one more thing I can get off the counter.  All that is left sitting out is his coffee maker and the toaster oven, both items we use frequently.  I can’t decide if it looks like we just moved in or if we just look like cold minimalists:)  Functionally, I love having cleared counters though.  It makes it so much easier to wipe down the counters and it gives me plenty of room to do daily tasks without constantly having to move stuff around.

Fall Decor

My mom called me today to tell me that she and my dad had dropped off a gift for me at my house.  (She had given me a heads up last week that my dad had bought me something and he would get his feelings hurt if I didn’t keep it out)  Uh oh.  I was imagining the most awful things possible.

But when I saw what was sitting on my dining table, I smiled immediately.  My mom had a pair of brass quails in the living room when I was growing up, and I had asked her if they had come across them while they were recently cleaning out their attic.  I thought they would be perfect additions to my fall decor.  She said they hadn’t and that I must have sold them at a yard sale (the rare down-side to my decluttering obsession).

After that, I moved on, but my wonderful parents did not forget about my desire.  Mom came across a pair on ebay and had my dad bid on them for me.  Here they are living it up on our foyer table with the fantastic cloche I found recently.

The tray was a Goodwill find a long while back (I have a matching one slightly bigger as well).  I had thought about refinishing them, but now I’m glad I never got around to it.  I like the fall-rustic feel of the burlap, brass, wheat and wood with iron hardware.

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