kriselkeeper: March 2010

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

As Featured on The Stir

My DIY bench project was featured on The Stir.  Thank you Sheri for liking my idea so much as to write about it.  It's pretty exciting to get noticed by another cool blog. Thank you to my neighbor Tracy for passing my project on to Sheri.  Ah, networking moms...I love it!

I took better pictures for the Stir than I did for my own blog.  I thought I should post those on here as well.

Labels: ,

Monday, March 29, 2010

Charlie Brown Tree Update

Last summer, in August, I posted about our Charlie Brown tree and the side yard.  I wanted to update on how the planting has done in the last seven months.  The tree is growing steadily. He's looking quite healthy these days.  

The median has it's good and bad parts. Half the median is growing well and the other not so much.  The west side, the side with the Charlie Brown tree, is growing like mad.  However, I suspect there is a leak in the soaker hose or pipe somewhere which is why it's so happy. The Mexican Feather Grass and Myoporum have taken root and are spreading.  The Myoporum needs trimming every few months. I love the carpet of green it's become.  The grasses seem to enjoy the dry season better.  They all looked pretty sad during the rains this winter.  Now, they're happy. 

The east side of the median is another story.  Very little of the Myoporum is still alive.  The grasses are half the size of their brothers on the "other side of town".  I'm not sure if it's from the shade of the large Jacaranda tree or that their really is a leak on the other side sucking all the water out of this section.  

I am impressed that all these plants survived last summer.  They were planted during the dry season and made it through the water restrictions.  During the summer I watered twice a week for 10 mintues.  During the winter I don't water at all.  It's the only part of our property that looks good all year around with minimal care. 

Weeding this entire section is much easier now that it's covered in mulch and tree chips.  The weeds that do manage to sprout are way easier to pull out.  The Myoporum chokes out anything that even thinks about settling.  At some point I won't have to worry about weeding over here ever again.  

My next perimeter to worry about is the median in front of our house.  It requires more thought because I need to consider foot traffic to the car and a severe dry patch.  At the moment it's home to some nasty weeds trying to take over the neighborhood.  


Thursday, March 25, 2010

Kid's Room Garbage Cans

I obsess over the details. Garbage cans for example.  It's the kind of thing I'll spend weeks researching before I find one that fits exactly how I want it. But it's the details that can make a room and a garbage can isn't something to replace that often.  This kind of functional piece is what I tend to overlook even if it's ugly because I've seen it a thousand times in my home.   So, when the garbage can in P's room fell apart a couple weeks ago I thought, ok here we go again.  To my surprise, the next day I found this one at Target.  They come in quite a few bright colors and it has a rubbery fun texture.  A super quick find at a great price: $10.  I love it when this happens! 


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

If You Can't Own it, Play with it.

I have this blog devoted to the development of our Mid Century house. And I have another blog, Mamma May I, devoted to the development of my daughter.  On occasion there are subjects/objects that pertain to both. This is one of them.

The Arne Jacoombsen Doll House.  It is an identical copy of his own villa on Gotfred Rodes Vej 2 in Charlottenlund.  I have no idea where that is. All I know is that I love his chairs and sense of style all around.  I have no idea how much it costs, but it's at least less than one of his real houses....I'm assuming.

Labels: ,

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Bedroom Sconces

I'm starting my search of bedroom lighting. The dresser has been my motivation.  It needs to be in good company.   Eventually we'll get a new bed, a platform bed, so it'll be lower than what we have now.  I'd like the bed side tables to come out of the wall like CB2's Sleepy Hollow nightstand 
or something along the lines of the Century Nightstand from CB2. 

Because of the limited table space and our need to have books and drinks near us in bed, I'd like the light fixtures to come out of the wall instead of a lamp taking up precious space.  

The Tolomeo Classic Wall lamp seems like an obvious choice but I feel it's too obvious.  It's what I expect to see in a great hotel but not a great home, although the light is great all around. 

I'd love something like this:

And this bring us to the issue of the wall sconce on the opposite wall.  The sconce that will go over our dresser.   I'm pretty sure the scones by the bed will be in some sort of silver metal so I'm not sure if I want to coordinate all the lighting or do something in white or color. These are my selects so far. 

from Remodelista

from Remodelista

from Remodelista

and my two  granddaddy favorites of all, the Nelson Cigar Wall Sconce from Room and Board

and the Arne Jacobsen wall sconce

Labels: ,

Monday, March 22, 2010

My happy mug

For the last post, about the dining room wall painted black, it took me three days to get the table and dining area clear....or as clear as I was going to get it.  That's a busy traffic space for us.  We still have tax documents out in boxes and file folders, even though we've been through with taxes for over a month.  Our weekly newspapers are stored in a Costco box.  I figure one neat, ugly box beats piles of disarray all over the house.  And finally there is my ever present favorite cup and French press that sits on the dining room table 24/7.

I'm a sipper. I drink one or two cups of coffee throughout the entire day.  If I get a Starbucks latte it'll go in the fridge at the end of today and I'll reheat the second half for breakfast tomorrow.  That's how I like it.  Gross for some, perfect for me.  

This is my favorite cup.  It's from Paperchase. I purchased it at Borders years ago.  I love the design, the size and the details. On the inside of the mug is a mouse.  I fill the cup until it looks like the mouse is sitting on the coffee.  I know this is incredibly childish but it makes me kind of laugh every day.  


Saturday, March 20, 2010

I see a white wall and I want to paint it black

D went to Dallas on Tuesday for work.  I wanted to do something major to surprise him when he got back.  To be honest, when he's gone I feel I have a bit more leeway to experiment.  Both of us are full of opinions.  With him away I only have to deal with my own.  

 We've talked about painting the dining room wall with chalk board paint many times.  We discussed several options from doing the entire wall to painting wide stripes or one big section across the middle.  Neither one of us has had the guts to do it.  I think getting the dresser and hanging the dining room lamp gave me the courage to jump in and paint the entire wall.  

Lately, I've also been feeling that our house is too white.  It needed something bold to tie in the "childish colors"  of the kid toys and accents and the mellow "adult" brown hues.  I think it worked well.  It made the chairs and hanging lamp pop.  The table looks much better as my opinion. 

D loved it.  I knew he was going to be tired at the end of a long day...aka crabby. So to avoid too much shock at the wrong time I sent him a picture when I was half way done at about 2pm.  He thought I was playing a practical joke on him. He thought I had photoshopped the black in until he took a very close look at the picture and saw the blue tape around the edges.  

It was no practical joke. I had managed to paint a wall black while juggling a 2 year old!!! P was actually incredibly good. She helped me paint for 5 seconds and then realized painting in the real world is a lot of work and Mom is full of opinions about technique.   

Labels: ,

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Perfect Glass

I love Calla Lilies and I love that we now have a whole row of them in our back yard.  This time of the year I have fresh flowers in the house for weeks.  I've been searching for a perfect vase for them. I wasn't falling in love with anything.  Over the weekend I remembered I bought this vintage milk bottle a while back.  I think it's perfect for Calla Lilies on the dining table. I can see the entire flower, which to me has a strong beauty that starts with the stem.  


Monday, March 8, 2010

Dining Room Lighting

From the day we first set foot in this house my husband and I have hated the sconces that came with the place.  It was item number one to change on our list.  The kitchen light got replaced because my dad did it.  The rest have stayed the same for fear of touching anything electrical.  

Yesterday Hubby took the Pea to Travel Town in the afternoon and I decided to get brave.  I finally changed the dining room light fixture!  It was pretty easy to do. The fear in my head was larger than the task by far.  

The hanging lamp is the Ikea 365 Brasa.  It will do for now.  Inexpensive, but more our style.  My dream dining room lamp is the Artichoke pendant by Louis Poulsen.   I saw them in wood in Houston's Restaurant in Pasadena and they look beautiful!  However, priced at anywhere from $3,500 - $14,000 I don't think I'm going to ever have an original or a repo.  Only if I got as lucky as I did yesterday with the dresser could I have one.   

The Ikea lamp makes me happy.  I love that the light now falls on the table. When we eat I don't have to turn on any other light in the living room or kitchen.  The one above is perfect. The big struggle was figuring out where to hang it.  Hanging it from the beams wouldn't make it center to the table. Hanging it from the other part of the ceiling would require setting in a cross beam that in my opinion would look ugly.  I compromised. It's off center from this angle but not from the perspective of the living room.  I'm ok with that.  

Labels: ,

Sunday, March 7, 2010


This is what our living room looks like on a daily basis now.  P has taken to using the sofa as a trampoline. On the one hand I'm thrilled she's this active.  On the other hand, I really don't like that our living room is a mess....constantly!  

The sofa started to creak when she's on it.  Neither my husband nor I have told her to stop because she'll break it.  He hasn't said it, but I know, we don't like the couch and hope to have an excuse to buy a new one.  Is this really proper parenting?  

Ok, truth be told, I always wanted kids so this chaos makes me quite happy.

Labels: ,

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Dresser Score!

I found a fabulous dresser! Exactly the size I wanted, with exactly the lines I wanted!  Now, here's the most amazing part;  I got it for.....  $300?  No.  $200?  No.  $100? No!  I got it for $5 on craig's list.  F-I-V-E.  5 dollas!

I've been looking for this dresser for a while. I even put it on my birthday wish list but figured with all the other things we needed I couldn't afford to get something right now.  I love it.  It needs some veneer work on the top and on three drawers but other than that it's in great condition.  

Happy Birthday to me from Craig's list. Really it was from a dude named Keith in Brentwood.  Thank you Keith.  I will love your grandparents dresser for decades to come.  And thank you T & D for lending us your minivan this morning!  

Labels: , ,

Friday, March 5, 2010

Birthday Wish List 2010

(I don't want a gun for my birthday, but I'm not going to say how old I'll be. So if you know what this is then you'll know my age come Wednesday.  )

My birthday is coming up.  My husband asked what I wanted.  I thought I only had one or two things in mind.  As I started to write them down I realized my list is long. I'm like an 8 year old at Christmas.  

I thought I'd start documenting my wishes because it really puts a time stamp on where I am with this house...and in life.

  1. Hose winder for the backyard. (It can be ugly. I need function more than form)
  2. Hose pot for the front yard.  Needs to be beautiful.
  3. Two Shoestring Acacia trees
  4. 4 Flats of Blue Fescue grass
  5. Five Foxtail Ferns
  6. House numbers (Beautiful Mid Century ones in a great font.)  
  7. A Nelson clock for our bedroom wall. (I can't see what time it is during the day on our our digital one because of our Mid Century windows)
  8. A new front door.
  9. Floor tiles for our entry way.
  10. A dresser for our bedroom.

So, those are the things I want for our house.  Now the things I want for me....
New yoga clothes
New makeup
A haircut ( a good one doesn't come cheap around these parts of town).
Channel wallet (its the one brand that has exactly what I'm looking for....of course!)