Posts made in July, 2012

The well dressed cat (yes, I’m one of THOSE people)

Posted by on Jul 30, 2012 in Tails | 0 comments

Today’s truth: I like to dress my cats up.  Yep.  I’m THAT crazy cat lady.  There are the tiny antlers purchased last year for a wee bit of kitty Christmas cheer.  There have been fancy collars and the threat of cute little sweaters (to which Sweetie says NO.)  So imagine my delight when I saw THIS in my email inbox this morning, via my daily Etsy emails (you get those right?  If you don’t, you really really should!)…

Cat wearing herringbone newsboy hat

Yep.  That’s right.  A swanky little hat for my sexy little cats.  (Rhyming quite deliberate, albeit awful, btw.)  Courtesy of CatAtelier.  I actually squealed just a little when I saw it.  The little poorboy cap is absolutely perfect in every way.  And the model has a certain je-ne-sais-quoi about him (a look that says, “oui, c’est vrai – je rock ce chapeau.  Tu donne moi un poisson?”)

(PS – for anyone who is actually fluent in French, please pardon any grammatical errors above – grade 12 French class was a looong time ago.)

Also available through CatAtelier is this sweet little white beret…

Cat wearing white felt beret courtesy of CatAtelier

It’s fully-lined for those extra chilly winter mornings at the front window.  The matching scarf is also avail.  Of course.  :)

And to satisfy your cat’s inner James Bond, there’s always this untied tuxedo collar…

Cat with tuxedo collar bowtie

Kitty.  James Kitty.  Catnip; shaken, not stirred.

So will I be purchasing a fancy little herringbone cap (or a lovely white beret, or a super cool tuxedo collar) for my kitty crew?  Likely not.  Given that I haven’t yet played dress-up with the new kittens, I’m not sure if they’d really be into it (although don’t doubt that I really do plan to try!)  And at $68 for the sweet little cap, that’s a bit more than I’d spend on an accessory that will likely get shaken off within about 30 seconds (cats are a bit houdini-like when it comes to quickly removing a hat/fancy collar/pair of miniature antlers…)

But I can dream of cats in herringbone caps, can’t I?  Just think of how adorable dear Irwin would look in a little poorboy cap…

Irwin the cute gray and white cat

Yep.  That’s his “please don’t dress me up mom” look, I’m pretty sure.  Little does he know, there’s only four more months to go until the antlers come out.  He’d make the cute little reindeer methinks.  :)

 

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Shut the front drapes! (What not to hang in your front windows) (Somewhere, far far away, Stacey and Clinton are cringing)

Posted by on Jul 23, 2012 in Living Room | 0 comments

So the curtains in our front window have been driving me a wee bit bonkers for a while now (since we hung them up almost two years ago when we moved into this house, in fact.)  Why?  Despite being super cute (I love the pretty little pattern!) (the curtains are from Ikea btw – they’re Ikea’s Hedda Blad) they’re very… light and airy.  Ie: they look a bit like we’ve hung sheets in our windows when closed.  Which, having lived in student housing for quite a while during my University years, I can attest from experience is never a classy look.

Ikea Hedda Blad white patterned curtains in living room

Ikea Hedda Blad white curtains in living room window

They’re very sweet curtains and I really do like them, but because they’re rather sheer and cotton and white, they DO indeed resemble sheets just a bit.  Which, unfortunately, isn’t at all the look I’m going for.

So what did I do?  I went to Ikea, of course.  :)  I buy pretty much all of my curtains at Ikea since…

a) they’re inexpensive (so if the kitties play hide and seek behind the curtains, which they often do, and the curtains become riddled with claw marks, I don’t stress) (because who wants to stress over curtains, anyway?)

b) they’re LONG.  It’s not so much of an issue at this house (our ceilings here seem to be a pretty standard height) but with super high ceilings at our last humble abode, I became obsessed with having long curtains.  I’d rather my drapes be too long than too flood-ready

c) they’re NICE – I love Ikea’s drapery department (plus there’s always the fun of hiding in the sample drapes and scaring the crapolla out of your Sweetie when he walks by :)

After a rather whirlwind trip to Ikea (they were scheduled to close about 30 minutes after we arrived, so Sweetie helped keep me focused on moving straight into the drapery department, despite that what I really wanted to do was wander off and browse) (I heart Ikea) we walked out with the natural-coloured Ritva drapes.  They’re hidden-tab-topped.  They’re hearty-looking.  They’re both cheap and cheerful.  And they’re not at all sheet-like.  I rather like them.  As does Jacob.

Ikea Ritva curtains in my BM Edgecomb Gray living room

Ikea Ritva curtains with BM Edgecomb Gray walls and Ektorp sofa

The Ritva curtains have a bit of a linen-ish look to them, which keeps them from looking particularly sheet-like…

Ikea Ritva linen-like curtains

Erik rather likes the new curtains too.  Kitten approval is very important in decorating matters, you know.  :)

Erik enjoying our Ikea Ritva curtains

All in all, I’m quite happy with our new Ritva curtains!  From a decorating-risk standpoint, they’re about a 2 on the 1-10 scale (with 10 being chartreuse paisly, and 1 being one of those plain white vinyl pull-down blinds) but I’m ok with that.  They’ll do for now.  :)

PS – sending a big huge congratulations out to my little brother and his new wife who were married last Thursday!  So happy for you!  So happy for me (I’ve finally got that sister I’ve wanted since I was little and realized that a gross and stinky brother [since all brothers are both gross and stinky when you're little] was all I was ever going to get.)  Lots of love to you both!

 

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Introducing the amazing Mr D (it sucks) (which is a good thing!) (lots of similarly bad humour to follow)

Posted by on Jul 9, 2012 in Ramblings... | 0 comments

A while back our vacuum stopped sucking.  Which sucked.  (Ha.)  (You must have seen that one coming.)  Sweetie tried “taking his air compressor to it” (I’m not entirely sure what that means, but I think he was trying to clear out any dust that had accumulated over time, in an attempt to improve the suckage) but that didn’t help.  And as the layer of kitty fur grew thicker and thicker on our carpet (I’m pretty sure that Irwin prides himself on his rather impressive ability to distribute an even blanket of fur wherever he sits), it became apparent: we needed a new vacuum.

And as we chatted about the merits and downfalls of various vacuum cleaners, it became pretty clear: Sweetie (being a gadget-guy) really wanted a Dyson.  As did I, truth be told (both my mom and my mother-in-law have Dysons, and both of them pretty much hug their vacuums every night before bed), but I was having a big problem justifying the cost.  (If a Dyson was a car, it’d be a BMW, and we’re most definitely K-Car kinda folk.)  And then we made the discovery that would make everything allll better: we still had gift cards from our wedding (like, 3.5 years ago) for the Bay (where they do indeed sell Dysons) to use up, as well as a much-appreciated monetary Christmas gift from Sweetie’s parents that was originally earmarked for a new barbecue (but that we quickly agreed would be better used for a new vacuum since our barbecue, albeit archaic, does indeed still function pretty well.  Our vacuum?  Not so much.)  A little happy dance ensued.

After all the requisite research into which Dyson would be the best Dyson for us (upright vs canister, big vs little, pet-fur-approved vs standard model) we decided on the DC 37 Animal canister vac.  And after many phone calls to various stores around Southwestern Ontario, and a quick trip to the Bay store in Burlington, we purchased what appears to be the only Dyson DC 37 Animal currently available within about a two hour radius of our home.  Everyone was sold out (including the Bay store in Burlington, once we snatched up our little bundle of joy.)  I’m assuming that’s a good sign, right?

And so, without further delay, please allow me to introduce you to the good Mr Dyson…

Dyson DC37 Animal canister vac ready to go

He’s pretty eh?  We love him.  :)  And, he’s Sweetie-sized – the wand part elongates by almost two feet (making vacuuming a much more pleasant experience for my 6’4″ Sweetie.)

The cord retracts, which is also pretty awesome.  You just press this button…

Dyson DC 37 retractable cord

…and poof!  No cord to wind or store.  :)

Speaking of the cord, some reviews we read online mentioned that the cords on Dysons are rather short, but we didn’t really find this with our Mr Dyson.  Albeit, our house is rather tiny, but we were able to do all the carpet on our main floor without once having to move where this little dude was plugged in.

The vacuum wand part (I’m pretty sure that’s not what it’s called, but you know what I mean, right?) attaches to the base for storage (since the wand part is otherwise a little unruly and doesn’t stand up on its own), so when all clicked together, it looks like this…

Dyson DC 37 Animal assembled and ready to go

…and this from the front…

Dyson DC 37 Animal front view

…he’s rather cute, non?  :)

Another feature we like?  The beater-brush is really easily removed if it gets gucked up with stuff.  Have I ever mentioned that Sweetie has really long hair?  Yep.  He does.  ‘Nuf said.

So yes – Mr D is indeed pretty.  And, yes, that’s important in a vacuum.  (Well, to me, at least.)  And he has some nice little handy features too.  But, MOST IMPORTANTLY, he sucks.  A LOT.  I won’t post the picture I took of what came out of our tiny little area rug in the living room on the inaugural vacuum with Mr Dyson, but let’s suffice it to say that it was indeed gross.  GROSS.  And the carpet even looks better and cleaner now.  I’m totally sold.

Of course, mere moments later, someone was back at work, making things furry again (sigh…  It’s a good thing they’re cute.)

Jacob cat making things furry again post Dyson DC37 vacuum

So there you have it.  :)  Likely way more info than you ever needed/wanted to know about our fancy-pants new vacuum, but I’m just SO HAPPY with it that I had to share.  We’ll see how he holds up over time to three very furry cats and a Sweetie who works in construction.  With Mr Dyson’s five year warranty, I have high hopes.  Updates will follow!

 

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The kitchen floor debate rages on (in my own head at least) (is it weird to debate with oneself?)

Posted by on Jul 5, 2012 in Kitchen | 0 comments

Could we please talk about my kitchen floor a wee bit more?  Just a little?  I know.  I KNOW.  We’ve talked about my floor A LOT (here, and here, and here, to be exact.)  One more, k?

Need a reminder?  It has been a good, oh, couple of weeks since I’ve obsessed about my kitchen.  Here’s the current state of my wee little kitchen (please note the uuugly floor!)

Ugly kitchen floor linoleum peel and stick

Gross eh?

So what’s this big ongoing internal dialogue all about?  Painted plywood floors.  Again.  Yeppers.  Just when I thought I’d made a decision on which flooring would be most cheap and most cheerful for my humble little kitchen, I saw a Pinterest pic that made me pine for something else.  But rather than the patterned floors I drooled over the last time I pondered plywood potential, I’ve now switched gears (me? really?  go figure…) and my newest obsession is checkerboard.

It kinda started with this floor from Better Homes and Gardens (which, if you’ll recall, was indeed a contender for my floor future the last time we all discussed this)…

Painted kitchen floor gray and white checkerboard

It’s just so PRETTY!  And that gray on the walls could very well be the Stonington Gray that’s on our kitchen walls.  Which is perfect alongside those white cupboards (hey – we have white cupboards too!)  Yep.  This is the exact colour scheme of our current kitchen.  (Well, sorta…  If you completely disregard our sad looking countertops.)  And just look at how pretty and serene that all looks with the checkerboard floor.  Sigh.

I’m a little obsessed.

Here’s a second gray and white checkboard floor from Northern Light.  Just as lovely.  The pattern is a classic, like the black and white staple, but the gray and white is less in-your-face…

Gray and white checkerboard kitchen floor painted

And here’s a third (yes really!) gray and white sample (this one via Southern Living.)  (I might truly be onto something with this whole gray and white obsession!)  This one is ALSO lovely…

Painted plywood kitchen floor gray and white checkerboard

And then there are indeed non-gray options.  For example, could I interest you in a little yellow perhaps?  A la Makin’ It in Memphis

Yellow and white marmoleum floor in kitchen

Yep.  If a floor could be happy, I bet it’d look just like that!  (Albeit, Makin’ It In Memphis’ floor is genuine marmoleum, not painted, but a yellow and white painted checkerboard would be equally cheery methinks!)

I might very well be sold on the checkerboard floors.  Especially the gray and cream versions (again, it’s just so pretty with the gray wall paint.)  (Please excuse me while I swoon.)  What’s holding me back?  The truth?  It looks like a lot of work.  Not necessarily the painting part.  I’m sure that’s pretty straight forward.  It’s the TAPING that looks like quite the chore.  (And, being both slightly OCD and somewhat of a perfectionist, I’m guessing this is the type of project that could truly push my buttons.)

So will I have painted checkerboard floors in my happy little 1940s kitchen one day?  Perhaps.  Once I’m a gazillion percent sure that it’s really the right choice for my kitchen.  Since, well, I’m only going to (very precisely) tape off forty-seven 12″ squares once.

OK.  Twice.  Tops.

 

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