Dan, Dan the Birthday Man!

Well it’s January 15th again and if you are a long time reader, then you know that it is Dan’s birthday!  I have already sent my birthday love (see this post to know what that means.) However, I am not sharing them like I did last year.  This year I’m doing something a little bit different for the public arena.  I decided to use my skills, or lack thereof, and express my love in Multi-Media Slideshow Delight.  So here you go Dan.  I love you so much, that I spent all day in my Jammy Jams creating this just for you.

Now that is love.

The music is My Best Friend, by Weezer (best band ever fyi)                                                 No copyright infringement intended, just some birthday love.

Side note: This really is Dan and I’s song.  We sing it to each other aaaalllllllllllllllll the time.  Especially if one of us is grumpy ;-)

Remember Kindness

Remember Kindness | The SmithocracyI posted this sentence on Facebook today as it has been on my mind. Lately I have been interacting with a lot of people experiencing Turmoil. Turmoil in relationships.  Turmoil in the world. Turmoil in families. Turmoil in self.

It seems like there is a never ending onslought of things that go wrong. Misunderstandings, selfishness, anger, hurtful words and all the other negative things that can be listed. As I have had different friends, family members and downright strangers come to me for advice recently, I have noticed a theme in the advice and conversations.

Kindness.

Or lack thereof.

So many things in this world can be solved with just a little bit of kindness. To reach beyond our Self and see the needs of another. To take a moment and consider what pain others may be experiencing. Not just our own Pain. There is more to the world than what YOU are experiencing.  This does not diminish your own experience. Your Pain, your Turmoil, your Hurt. They are Valid Things.

However so is the strangers next to you. The sister. The friend.

So I woke up thinking that If I COULD tell the world one thing, it would be to Remember Kindness. After I wrote that sentence I remembered that I also have a blog. And although I don’t have the audience of the entire world. I do have An Audience. And I say to you…

Remember Kindness.

…and we’re back!

Soooooo I’m not sure what to say after such a long and awkward silence. There is some coughing and clearing of the throat. Some eye shifting, wondering who should go next. That nervous laugh…

…lets just dive right in shall we?

LAST TIME ON THE SMITHOCRACY (radio show announcer voice)

I left you with the knowledge that we completed the Art Studio. How fun! I promised to share all the wonderful projects that came out of that. And share I shall! Let’s first start with the floor.

Ahhhhhhhh the beautiful, beautiful floor.

Art Studio |The SmithocracyI LOVE this floor. I L-O-V-E this FLOOR!  I even LURVE it. I wish you could reach in and touch it. Anyone that comes to the Smithocracy in Real Life, I make touch the floor. It is so silky soft. Seriously get down and rub your face on it. Ahhhhhh Smoooooooth.

So how did this floor get here. Well it came from the big Orange Box.

boxes_floorIt is Tiger Striped Engineered Bamboo. We chose to get the click and lock for easy install. Once it was home, we had to let it get climatized for a few days. So we introduced it to it’s future home and left it to itself. Once Mr. Tiger was acquainted, it was time to do something about the carpet.

pullingbackcarpetThis was really easy. Just pull it back and roll, roll, roll. Easy enough that we recruited the best helpers.

goodhelpersA little tougher was removing the rug. But not as tough as we expected.

removingcarpetpadAnd when I say we, I mean Dan. I actually did not do a single thing on this project. I was the supervisor. Which means I took pictures and said “good job,” “looks great,” “your amazing.” All those supportive things that helps ensure future project help.

Here the pad is removed and Dan celebrates with an awkward pose.

carpetgoneawkwardstanceWe (again, by we I mean Dan) did have to do a little scraping to remove the old carpet pad remnants. However, I don’t know if it is because of the newness of the house, or if the installation was poor, but the pad came off a lot easier than we supposed. Huzzah!

Next it was time for the new pad. This is a layer that you put between the wood floors and the cement. It helps with squeaks and protects it from moisture from coming up. So don’t skip this step. There are a lot of options, so pick the one you think works best for your situation.

helperOnce that was done it was time to start installing.

This is where I learned a new kind of math. I have been suspicious of this math for a while, but this project confirmed it.

New Project = New Tool

The right toolUsing this math, Dan drove to Orange Box and got himself the perfect table saw. This actually is necessary for all the cutting that needs to be done. But you, dear reader can borrow one, or rent one for a much better price. Unless you too are married to a Dan. A Dan will insist it must live permanently at your house or else he will pout for a very long time. And no one wants that.

For the most part, the install went rather quickly. If I remember right, it was about 2 days.There are so many sites that explain how to do it, that it seems silly to repeat it. So just know it involves cutting, fitting, snapping, snapping, snapping, snapping, snapping, cutting, fitting, snapping, snapping…you get the picture.

And here is a picture to get!

almostdone Soon it was complete!

While I was gone one day, Dan installed the quarter-rounds and finished up the trim. So sorry, no pictures of that part of the process.

Voila!

final2

finalPhew! I never worked so hard in my life! ;-)

Here is a close-up for Mr. DeMille.

floorcloseupIt’s so pretty!! I can’t even get it in picture form correctly!  Just lay on it and love it, and pet it and tell it it’s pretty.

So there you have it, the story of the floor. I am not sure if you picked up one that fact that we are fans. Do you have a project you love so much you want to name it?

P.S. If you follow me on facebook than you know exactly why it has been so quiet. Just one of the benefits of being a fully fledged Smithocrat. :-)

Stu-Stu-Studio

Hey Tannie, where you been?

I be in my studio, studio!

That’s right, one of my life long dreams have finally been realized. Thanks to the hard work of my super duper handy Dan.

I finally have an art studio to call my own!

We have been working hard converting the front office into a full on art studio. JOY!! And now that it is FINALLY complete, I can share it with all of you!

Here is where we started.

before | The Smithocracy before | The SmithocracyAs you can see, it was kind of a hodge podge, not sure what to do with this space, type of a room. At one point it even became a gym. But I never took pictures of that. Just imagine empty room, with a TV and exercise equipment. Yawn.

Shall we see what it looks like today? Literally today, I just took these pictures.

Here is a not so awesome panorama. However, it gives a good idea of the space.

Art Studio |The SmithocracyLets look at the details, shall we?

Art Studio |The Smithocracy Art Studio |The Smithocracy   Art Studio |The Smithocracy Art Studio |The Smithocracy  Art Studio |The Smithocracy Art Studio |The Smithocracy

Art Studio |The SmithocracyI am beyond happy! It is so nice to have a space to work in. It keeps me from spreading my mess to every part of the house. It’s also nice having all my supplies out of boxes.

Logan was the first to give it a test drive.

Logan |The SmithocracyAs you can imagine A LOT of projects occurred to get to the final product. So my next few posts will be all about the things we did. Installing floors, building shelves, making curtains, etc. So much to share! So stay tuned.

Anyone out there have there own space to create in? Please share!

Just a little “Song” for you.

Good Tuesday all. Hope you enjoyed your extended weekend. I sure did!

My brother made my day and shared two awesome dance videos with me. So now I will share them from you. They are both done by a talented guy named Mike Song. He also works with his mother. Isn’t that so cool!

Enjoy!

Yes, it was worth it.

Every now and then I have days where I wonder if it was worth it to give up my business to stay at home. I wonder if I am living below my potential or wasting time and talent. It never fails, when I feel like that, usually something like the following happens to help me know that I totally made the right decision.

Carnation | The SmithocracyI found this bedraggled flower in Austin’s backpack. He grabbed it from me and instantly started to run water on it. He was visibly upset. I asked “whats that?”

“I bought this for you with my own dollar mom, I snuck my dollar out and was saving it for mothers day.”

He used his own allowance to buy me a flower. He hid it in his backpack, and was going to keep it there till Sunday.  He couldn’t understand why it didn’t look nice anymore.

To me, it’s perfect.

4 to Tabouret

This won’t come as a shock to my sleuth-like readers. You may have possibly put 1 and 1 together if you saw these pictures on Instagram.

Round Mirrors      Red Tabouret | The SmithocracyYes, I did indeed find some stools for my kitchen island.

HUZZAH!

Craig’s List once more pulled through for me on this one. A local cafe was closing its doors in order to open new ones. In the process they were selling their old Tabouret Stools. At $25 a pop, I snatched them up before anyone could say “hey, are those Tabour….oh, they’re sold.”

Because they were outdoor stools, they did in fact have some sun damage. I took them over to the Official Smithocracy Cleaning Station.

AKA, Kitchen Sink.

Red Tabouret Stools | The SmithocracyPulled out the ‘ol Magic Eraser pads and Viola!

_MG_0569The one on the left has been Magically Erased, while the one on the right patiently awaits its turn. It took one Magic Eraser per stool. Yikes, quite the work out for my poor little arms. I decided for my own sanity to clean one stool per day. This payed off well, as I think doing them all at once would have turned into me hating them forever and just lighting them on fire. My patience payed off and I now have 4 fancy Tabouret Stools living at my counter.

Before.

_MG_6926Boring and colorless.

Red Tabouret Stools | The Smithocracy

Red Tabouret Stools | The SmithocracyRed Tabouret Stools | The SmithocracyJust the pop I was looking for.

I’m really happy about my find, and especially how well they cleaned up with just a Magic Eraser. I was really NOT looking forward to painting them.

They also receive 4 Smithocratic Votes of Awesomeness for the amazing convenience of eating at the counter. We never knew how incomplete our lives were before these fancy new stools. I don’t know how we managed before. ;-)

Any fun finds find their way into your life lately?

P.S. I like you, you should like me! Hop on over to facebook and make it official. :-)