Tag Archives: third floor

all clear on the top floor

Bathroom 1

Since I’m sort of on a roll here, I thought I’d just run with it – sorry for the redundancy in some of these photos with older posts. We’ve made a concerted effort to get our act together and get organized around here, and a big part of that has been systematically working our way through the house. Sometimes you can live in an unfinished space for so long that you start to ignore your surroundings a bit. I’m ready to appreciate my surroundings a bit more this year, and this cleaning up and clearing out is really helping that.

Bathroom 2

M cleaned all three bathrooms – fixtures, floors, etc. and then I went back into the girls’ bathroom to organize and deep clean some other areas. I took down the shower curtains and washed them, pulled everything out of the cubbies and pared them down a bit, soaked and scrubbed the trash and recycling cans, and I even took the ABC cards down – for now.

Bathroom 5

I actually asked both girls about the cards, and I was surprised that they still felt really strongly about having them up on the ledge. But we still took them down to dust and polish the room, and I’m leaving them down for a week to see if we change our mind. I think the it grows the room up a bit, even with the bright colored stripes in there. (If you’ve only seen this room in the This Old House spread, then this might not make sense. They took the cards that usually sit on the ledge around the room down for that photo shoot.)

Bathroom 3

I’m really happy with this room, and I’m surprised that I’m not yet tired of the stripes in there. It’s quite a bit bolder than I normally lean, but it’s wearing well in there. The only small project I have for this room is switching out something over the toilet. I’ve had that photo of two-year-old E there for a decade – now I want E to help me out with something fun for the wall there. I took a photo of the ferris wheel at Cedar Point a couple of summers ago that I love. E and I might do a watercolor together of that image, or we even thought we might make a mosaic of it. (We got really inspired by our Yucandu Art Studio visit this morning – more on that later.)

Bathroom 4

That’s the light I mentioned using in our Master Bathroom downstairs. I keep forgetting to measure it to make sure this particular size works, but I’ll do that tonight and get those ordered.

Stair Hall 1

There are bigger projects to tackle in the Stair Hall, but M got busy on some of those this weekend. We’ve had temporary treads on two-thirds of this flight for awhile – he trimmed and refinished the edges on the actual treads so that the treads float off the wall for an equal distance all the way up, and then he finished them with polyurethane and reinstalled them. As you can see, we still just have a temporary railing on this stair run. Completing that project is also on the sooner-rather-than-later list. You can also see the sheen change in the wall paint – we have to finish painting the wall and ceiling below, so that’s on the list too. But we’re getting there!

Stair Hall 2

The girls still love to use this magnetic / chalkboard wall, so even though it’s been cleaned off for the moment, it’s usually full of stuff. When friends are over they really gravitate to this wall. (And that temporary railing looks really wonky in this photo, but it’s super sturdy and perfectly safe. Just not so attractive.) I’m really looking forward to how much a finished railing is really going to polish off this space. Then I might be tempted to repaint this wall white again and hang some great art on it – but I’m also not wishing away the years of drawing on the wall fun quite yet either.

Stair Hall 3

Speaking of artwork – swinging back in the other direction, you can see we really cleaned up the hallway and installed some new artwork.

Stair Hall 4

This photograph by Kim at Yellow Brick Home was one of E’s Christmas gifts. I framed it this weekend and hung it in this space where an underwater watercolor of hers used to reside. That picture fell sometime last year and the glass broke – then I made the mistake of leaving it on my desk where it promptly faded in the sunlight. I was so sad, but this is a nice spot of color to replace it.

Stair Hall 5

The black frame ties in well with the background of the little gallery nook at the top of the stairs. We took everything off and gave it all a thorough dusting. If this spot isn’t carefully maintained, it sometimes becomes a dumping ground for art projects. We tossed some old ones, archived a few others, and installed some more recent work. The girls have some other cool projects in the works, so this will continue to evolve. It’s nice to have a place to put some of these things. (And those containers hold the magnet and chalk collection for the opposite wall.)

Stair Hall 7

So this wraps up the current tour of the third floor – and here’s a run down of the current to-do list up here:

–Stair and Landing Railing
–Install Trim at Stair Opening
–Final Coat of Paint on Tall Stair Wall
–F’s Curtains
–Install New Window Sashes in F’s Side Window (A bird – or brick? – something flew into it and cracked the outer pane of the insulated glass. M ordered a replacement and is in the process of painting it in the basement.)
–New Artwork On Tub / Toilet Wall in Girls’ Bathroom
–Install Second Red Reading Lamp in E’s Room (it was discontinued, but I located a seller for one and should have it in hand this week.)

Next up – Second Floor!

another one bites the dust (bunnies)

Window Seat 1

It took some major motivation (and one brief pouting session – mine) to pick up where we left off earlier in the week. I was pretty beat at the end of the work week, so my alter ego and I were really duking it out. I wanted to stay motivated and knock some things off earlier in the weekend rather than later, but the other part of me just wanted to collapse into a heap and sleep for twelve hours. Or, you know, have some help. The problem with “help” and a six-year-old, is that it some of that help is really counter-productive.


F got really excited about the action in her big sister’s room, and she’s nagged me all week about “throwing stuff out” in her room. The problem with that technique here is that (she doesn’t realize this) I’m in a constant state of purging in her room. We read books together every night – the three of us, and sometimes her sister – but generally only two people fit comfortably on her bed. So that means that one parent is reading while the other parent is hanging out in the room listening – and usually straightening up a bit, or putting clothes away, or – in my case – thinning out the piles.

Couch 1

Which means she didn’t really have anything that should have been recycled or donated. I do have a growing pile of items on the first floor that I’ve gathered, but this big cleanup really involved dusting and polishing… and a whole lot of book and art supply organization.

Couch 2

Like most six-year-old’s, she’s a bit of a hoarder, and what she really likes to hoard the most is the recycling bin. She gets really creative at her desk, and she gets free reign up there to make a mess. But every four or five days, her desk and chair become buried in “projects”. So I perform some selective recycling – and she never  notices what’s missing.

Desk 1

I suppose this flies in the face of best practices with children – she should probably be more involved in the process of recycling her own work herself. But that never happens. It’s all precious if it’s in her hand. After that, it’s fair game.

Window Seat 2

Both girls do have bins at the top of their wardrobes for special items from their baby years, and favorite art projects and school projects. I bought a new container for each girl last weekend, and it’s a great spot for those things they aren’t ready to part with.

Bed 1

F didn’t receive any handmade gifts for Christmas this year like her sister did,  but her room has quite a few items that we’ve made for her over the years. And I still have one upcoming project, ahem, that shall not be named again here. (I have purchased all of the supplies I need though, so that’s progress.) She did get an adorable bed and quilt set for her mice, and they’ve taken up residence on her nightstand. I think they are adorable, and I wish she could stay six forever, with play mice next to her like this. (That two-year-old in the photo is pretty sweet as well.)

Mice 1

She wasn’t happy the last time we organized her bookshelves – she likes the rainbow colored shelves on the front. So now her favorite board books and younger kid books reside there (on appropriate shelves with matching colored toys), and we’ve moved a lot of the chapter books at her age level upstairs from the living room.

Books 1

For a room that’s mostly gray and white, she’s got lots and lots of color. Maybe that’s why I never tire of their rooms – they bring their own personality to a pretty neutral background.

Bright Lab

Her room is so bright and sunny – and that winter sun finally did break through the clouds after lunch – so this room is a perfect spot to sit in and soak up the rays. Did you notice the snowflake shadows scattered around the room?

Mice 2

F helped me vacuum her room this afternoon, and now we’ve covered that clean carpet with wooden train tracks. This is my favorite sun-drenched escape.

welcome to the top floor!

It was kind of fun to come out of a long meeting this afternoon and find my inbox full of messages – about E’s room, of all things.  It just took a few seconds to connect the dots and realize that her attic room was featured on Young House Love this afternoon – right here!
I’ve been following Sherry and John for awhile now and remembering fondly back to the days of just having one small child, one old house, a legal pad full of house projects, and more drive than dollars for getting those things done.  I wouldn’t say we have more dollars now, but definitely less drive.  But we still manage to get a lot done, and plan for a lot more to come.  If you’re curious about the rest of the house, there are plenty of projects and before and after’s under rehab slide shows and renovation.  And just to be fair to the other kid (that whole sibling rivalry thing), F’s room is a lot of fun too.
If you aren’t checking out YHL every single day then you must.  Trust me, you’ll get hooked – and more than a little motivated.  And for all of those questions out there about E’s room and beyond – I’ll get back to you later tonight after the kids go to bed.  Thanks for visiting – we’re pretty proud of our third story (and the little ones that inhabit it!)