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Tag Archives: Northwood Church
Since its the new year I’ve been thinking about all the fun annual things that are soon to be here. One of the largest events of the year, and one of my favorites is The Hunt. We stuff an inhumane amount of plastic easter eggs with candy and prizes and send a ton of kiddos from the whole area out to hunt for them. Not only is it completely insane but its also beautiful to see hundreds, nay tens of thousands (50,000 to be exact) of colorful eggs scattered across a field. I’m a fan of things in bulk so The Hunt is right up my ally.
I’ve been busy. Life has sort of taken me by storm. In the midst of it all, while trying to do some simple painting in our hall bathroom, I noticed a small little thing…the vanity was rotting. Like crumbles when you touch it rotting. Then I noticed the vinyl tile, it was coming up around the toilet. Bummer. So a simple paint job turned into a full remodel of the bathroom, all for under $500. Yes. Be impressed.
Here’s the whole remodel and how we did it for under $500.
The Original Bathroom
I took these pictures when we first saw the house back in February. It was staged and they were taken with my iPhone so please excuse quality and the bird house/accessories, not my choice.
Ok so it was this can of paint that began the remodel. I must thank you again Martha. Martha Stewart Paint $25, except Home Depot was running a special so I got a $5 mail in rebate. Score!
After I saw the stupid leak from the toilet we gutted the bathroom (everything except the tub). Our good friend Bill is so awesome, he came over and helped us with the whole project. We never could have pulled this off without him. Especially when we realized it wasn’t just the toilet leaking but also the sink area. So key #1 to an under $500 bathroom remodel, have a friend help you who knows what he’s doing.
And you’re thinking, “Oh your husband works at Home Depot, so you got a discount on everything, that’s how you did the whole remodel for under $500.” Yeah well, Home Depot does not give an employee discount. I know, shocking right? Its also horribly disappointing. I suppose sticking your tongue out a little helps?
New tile! We went to a place called Floor and Decor Outlets, they were very helpful and we got the tile, thin set, and grout for about $80. Not too shabby!
The Big Reveal
We got the vanity at Home Depot as well, on sale for $169. It included the sink. We were going to just use the toilet we had, but I figured the few hours I was going to spend cleaning the tank and everything was worth at least $68 so we just bought a new one for…drum roll…$68, which included all the insides. We bought new trim, it was roughly $15. The trim paint was around $15 as well (and I have a TON left over). I went dark which was a brave step for me, but it turned out awesome.
As far as the accessories go I had most of them already, but in case you’re curious…The shower curtain I purchased when we first moved in for $15 at Wal-Mart. I had the rug and accessories, they’re from Bill’s bachelor days, but they are pretty cool. The towels I had as well, but they are Thomas O’Brien from Target, Best.Towels.Ever. So plush and awesome, and very well priced, around $15. The tulips are made of metal and about three years ago I managed a cafe that was inside an interior design/boutique/art/market thing. They were in a booth directly across from our cafe and I lusted after them for months until the manager of the market bought them for me for Christmas. They hold tea light candles and I just love them. The frame was a wedding gift and it has photos in it I took when we went on a cruise last October.
I still have to hang the mirror. I purchased a basic beveled mirror from Wal-Mart for under $10 (you can see it leaning against the wall in the first picture). I’m going to frame it out with fat wide trim and paint it with the same paint as the trim in the bathroom. We’ll eventually update the shower head and the light fixture but this was project we weren’t really planning on doing so it will have to wait until later. Also, Sam Dog snuck into the second picture, she’s the black blob near the bottom of the shot. And yes, that is a book on the back of the toilet, its titled What’s Your Poo Telling You and I highly recommend it. And that’s our bathroom remodel for under $500!
Bill at Buccee’s (a Texas Tradition), it was his first time. If I haven’t mentioned before my husband is from Philadelphia so all this Texas stuff is really foreign and kinds scary to him. I think he’s adapting well. I think he could have stayed all day at the Alamo.
I haven’t ridden roller coasters since high school, and its still my favorite. However there is this other issue…I hate lines. They don’t so much make me angry, its just hot and the lines are long and you’re just waiting. So I let everyone know my plan.
1. Ride as many roller coasters as I could before my patience for lines ran out (I figured this would happen at about lunch time).
2. Eat Lunch
3. Enter the water park, find a tube, and float around the Lazy River until it was time to leave.
Three very awesome students joined me on my adventure. And I think we had by far the best adventure of anyone there.
I was also chased by a bee, which involved me spinning in circles for a while and then running like a crazy person. Yes, there is video footage of this, and yes a lovely student of ours put it on YouTube, and no I’m not telling you where it is. You’ll just have to find it yourself. So ha.
This passed weekend we took about 20 or so 13-18 year olds on an overnight trip to San Antonio, Texas and Six Flags. So fun. It amazed me how many of these students had never been to the Alamo, so we gave em a little ed-ju-cay-shon on their Texas heritage.
After entering this Alamo (the actual building, not the garden area around it) like any self respecting photographer I had my camera out, holding it close to my heart. This old man in a red sport coat, I assume he was a guard said, “NO PICTURES!” I said, “You mean no pictures with a flash, right?” He said, “NO PICTURES!” So I left.
Now, let me tell you, never tell a photographer that they can’t take pictures. Its like challenging them. We turn into one of those crazy bulls with their male bull parts all in a bind and you telling us we can’t take photos is like walking around with that big flashy red cape, taunting us. That man in his red blazer, yeah, he was that person.
Out side I thought hard about what the light readings might be in there. It was kinda dark and I needed the shutter to be fast enough to be able to sneak shots while holding the camera at my hip and while moving. I didn’t white balance, which looking back I should have at least tried. But I think I hit it right on, or at least pretty close. (Above photo of my feet is in the Alamo.)
So ha man in the red coat. I got to capture part of my states history from my perspective.
More from Six Flags to come.
Bill and I have been hard at work today, we did the lawn (he mowed while I edged), cleaned the house, painted my office, put everything back in my office, went through an incredible amount of paperwork that needed to be filed, and we did laundry. Be impressed. But after painting and the weed eating my arms feel like they are going to fall off my body. Its taking far too much energy just to type. It’s also taking far too long for each letter to appear on the screen.
Ever since my hard drive crashed and it was replaced my computer has been maddeningly slow. They gave me a larger hard drive but failed to mention that it was quite a bit slower. Apple, you will be hearing from me shortly.
The ache of the slowness was almost unbearable while I was working on my last project for my church, graphics for a new sermon series called Joshua Tree: Wanting All the Right Things. I got to see some of the notes while having a creative meeting for the artwork and I’d have to say I’m excited to hear what this will all be about.
I’m itching to do a photo shoot. I don’t have anything scheduled for a while so if anyone would like to take advantage of this free time I have and schedule something, please let me know. =)
Welcome summer. Welcome. This is the first summer I’ve craved summer break. I mean crave. Like a PMSing 16 year old craves chocolate. This could be for one of two reasons, or both. A. I hang out with a lot of high school and junior high students, all of whom are on summer break. Yes I am jealous. B. Last week, I went to summer camp. Not just any summer camp, but the same summer camp I attended when I was 13.
It was like flash back mania, monster trucks and all. Well, not really. There was even another counselor there who was like, you look so familiar. Turns out we went to that camp together. I was friends with her brother. Small world.
I should post more, but I’m going to pass out soon. Late night movie. See Toy Story 3, in 3D, it’ll blow your mind. =)
Can I shoot 46 families, or rather 46 combinations of about 40 families in the course of 2 hours? Why yes I can. Its kinda crazy, and it takes a lot of excellent planning and extra help, but it can happen. The down side is I don’t get to spend that much time with each family, which means they don’t get the wide range of “oh my gosh thats totally her” type photos. I also don’t get to know them as well as I’d like. But I still get some good shots, and its a lot of fun, and very high pace which I love.
The set: one ikea couch with black cover, one white back drop (which could have been a few feet wider and would have saved some time on the post production side, noted), one soft box, one giant window of natural light, and one fantastic assistant named Annie (any other name would not do). We kept it simple because we had to shoot SO quickly. It made like way easy.
The set up: The two lovely ladies in the chairs checked people in and gave them forms to fill out, forms were then handed to the assistants by the two lovely ladies who are standing, the assistants wrote down the shot number that started that particular family’s shoot. Genius. All thought up by that guy standing there. The ladder, we’re not sure why it was there.
The whole shoot was done for Northwood Church’s mother’s day service as a free thanks to moms for being moms. It was also the first in their series of “I Want A New Marriage”. Very excellent indeed.
I should also mention that I had a super husband that day. We rented a soft box light and when I went to turn it on it didn’t. So we checked it out and the casing that holds the bulb basically fell out. My husband went to Home Depot, got some stuff, and fixed it, right there, on the spot. I was amazed.
To be completely honest and horribly truthful I really enjoy fast food, but I am a fast food snob. I really only enjoy Jack in the Box, Chick-Fil-A, and Taco Cabana. I also am a fan of Taco Bell, less snobby, more thrifty, still you can’t beat their cheesy bean and rice burritos. Your typical fast food, Mc Donalds, Burger King, etc. I’m not so much a fan. If I’ve eaten there it was because it was not up to me.
The last time I remember entering a Burger King I think I was probably ten years old, everything was sticky and had a slight layer of grease. I remember the bathrooms being wet all over, for no real reason and there was never any toilet paper or soap. The play areas always smelled like diapers. Burger King was a scary place. But I do remember as a child, I enjoyed their chicken sandwiches that were long, on a sesame seed roll and served with nothing but lettuce and mayo. My husband swore that Burger King no longer carried them and so, I had no reason to go into one until last weekend.
After youth Bill, and several of the youth leaders and students decided Burger King was the place to go for a late night dinner. I did not object because usually I’m pretty easy going and even if I don’t particularly care for a place I’ll still go the company is way more important of a factor to me. To my surprise, wonder, and amazement this Burger King looked like no other I had ever seen. The youth students were a little confused as to why I was taking pictures, I just said that I had to blog about it.
The counter was my first wow moment. Ok so first of all, sweet flooring, can I please use this in my house? The menus were TV screens that showed moving pictures of the burgers all juicy and steamy. I loved the 3D piece of Iron Man breaking through a ceiling tile. Not an inch of feel of weird greasy covering. Insert major awe.
The wall says “Forged in the whopper flame” is there anything more epic?
So high five to Burger King they not only have stepped up their ads, funniest things ever, but their restaurants look awesome too. Thanks, and I’ll be back.
NOTE: If you are reading this post on facebook, you may not be seeing all of the images. Please visit the blog at diliberto.wordpress.com. Thanks, you’re awesome!
I know I’ve missed a few Fridays, but this one is kinda different. Its not particularly on the list, but its something I want for others. I Want A New Marriage. Not for me, not that my marriage is all butterflies and rainbows but we’ve got it somewhat together. Its just lately, I’ve been over come with grief for the large number of close friends who have come to me about separations from their significant others. I’m in shock honestly. And my heart aches for them.
These are amazing people, and I’m just shocked (I know I said this already, but I’m so shocked I had to say it twice for emphasis). Coming from divorced parents I hate the thing, luckily my parents are good friends, and their significant others are good friends, and I got two brothers out of the deal and an amazing step father I wouldn’t trade for anything. Plus my dad’s girlfriend is pretty awesome too. Even with all these things, it still sucks that my parents couldn’t make it work. I don’t often think, “what if?” because I do have all those amazing by products of my parents’ divorce, but when I do the thing I think most is “what if someone could have helped them.” Which brings me to my next point, a shameless (no sarcasm there, seriously) plug for a little series called, I Want A New Marriage.
My church (please non church goers, don’t get lost at the word church, keep reading) is beginning a series on marriage on May 9th. I know, I said the big “C” word, but really, I think, “is your marriage worth saving?” I’m not claiming that this series will save your marriage, but I’d like to think that you may learn something, even if its one thing, that may help your marriage. We can all learn right? And I promise Jesus will not be thrown down your throat, scouts honor. Below are the topics.
May 9 Marriage Myths & Misconceptions
May 16 His Needs / Her Needs
May 23 Doing Conflict Right!
May 30 Better Sex…Way Better!
June 6 Affair-Proofing Your Marriage (Guest Ted & Gayle Haggard)
June 13 Renewing Your Vows
You’re welcome to come hear the series live on Sundays at 10am at Schindewolf Intermediate School in Spring, Texas, we have free coffee and donuts! =) But if you’re not in the Houston area, or if you kinda get a little freaked out by the idea of stepping foot in a church (technically you wouldn’t be, seeing as how we meet in a school *insert sneaky smile*) just listen to the podcast online from the comfort of your own home, car, or office. You can listen to them at http://northwoodag.com/location/Podcast/Podcast.html, which gets updated faster than on iTunes.
I must also note that I had the privilege of helping with the graphics for this series, not my ideas but I’ve helped adapt them to other things. Much love for awesome church graphics. High five.
But seriously, listen to the series.
I’m seriously behind on blogging, most of these photos are from two weekends ago. I’ll have this weekend up asap! Still other than our first anniversary this weekend, last weekend was MUCH more eventful.
My dad pulled some awesome strings and got us 10th row seats behind the Astros dugout for the Astros v Phillies game. It was a surprise for Bill, this is his face when we told him that these were our seats. (more from this later as well)
We took our ONE youth students to Chuck-E-Cheese for our monthly One Out. This is Sarah and Kristen (youth leaders) riding the monster truck. =awesome!