The Final Countdown...

Ladies and gentlemen, we are now six days away from moving! I dedicated yesterday to packing up the rest of my kitchen supplies and many of my non-perishable food items, leaving me with a diet of cold sandwiches, cereal, and carry-out until the end of the week. Today, I put in my last day of work on our new place with Justin and Mom, though the two of them will be back tomorrow on Justin's day off to keep working on their projects.

Overall, I'm feeling really good about our progress. I finished cutting shelf liner for all our kitchen cabinets (I was initially attracted to our condo due to its spacious kitchen and ample cabinet space, but about half-way through this project, I was secretly wishing we had a tiny galley kitchen instead), so we'll be able to put away all our kitchen stuff when we move. Thankfully, we had our cable installed on Thursday, so I was able to enjoy our new television while I was sitting at the dining room table working, and I was able, at long last, to watch the Cooking Channel, which I consider superior to the Food Network, since they have shows that actually focus on, you know, how to cook things, as opposed to celebrity chefs engaged in inane competitions. I tasked Justin with picking out our t.v. and cable provider, and I think he chose very well on both fronts.

Mom and Justin put the finishing touches on our master bedroom and the second bedroom, which Justin likes to refer to as his "mancave," since that's where his desk and computer will be. This allowed me to get the rooms vacuumed and mopped with my seriously awesome new Eureka Enviro Hard-Surface Steamer. I'm not one to get super-psyched about cleaning products, and I'm not the kind of person who uses their blog to endorse products, but I have to say, this steam cleaner is life-changing. Mopping is probably in the top three of my least favorite household chores, after cleaning the toilet and washing the dishes, but this Eureka took virtually all the vigorous effort out of the equation. 

I also appreciate that it cleans without chemicals, which is not only more earth-friendly, it will eventually save me money on cleaning products, and spare my asthma-y lungs from inhaling their fumes. I'm not sure it would be the best choice if you had an enormous house (I only got through one and a half rooms before I had to add more water), but if you live in a small space with non-carpeted floors, I seriously can't recommend this product enough.

The master bedroom -- check out the awesome teal wall! I swear, the color is in the rug...
I was a little disappointed, however, with the condition of our rug, which my college friends may recognize from the dining room of the house we rented together senior year. It was pretty filthy after a year of dining room duty, so we had it professionally cleaned by Oscar Isberian, a local chain of oriental rug purveyors in the Chicagoland area. It cost $162 to get it "cleaned," (which is, at least, cheaper than a new rug would have cost), but when we unrolled it, it was covered in threads, lint, and debris. I didn't see any of the stains that were on it before, but it certainly didn't look clean. I had to spend a good amount of time attacking it with our Dyson vacuum, which helped, but it certainly wasn't the quality of cleaning I was hoping for. I wouldn't recommend Oscar Isberian at all, if you're in the market for a rug cleaning. 

I do, however, love the nightstands I was able to pick up for a steal at the Honquest outlet store that was going out of business near my parents' house. We stopped in on a whim one day and found them at a huge discount from their original price. They look beautiful with the floor, and though they aren't quite the same finish as my dresser, I think they have similar lines. I can't wait until we get the curtains hung, and the rest of the furniture in place. The bedroom is going to look great!

The mancave, complete with futon, to accommodate whatever house guests we might get in the future.
In the second bedroom, we struggled for ages to find the right shade of grey paint to match the rug we'd picked out; in fact, I think we looked at every swatch of grey paint in the state of Illinois, but I'm pleased with the choice we ultimately made. I wanted to keep the color scheme neutral in light of the very bright turquoise futon I'd fallen in love with. For Christmas, I got Justin some vintage-inspired Star Wars posters from Etsy to hang over the futon, so those, along with the pillows, will provide the only real pop of color in there besides the futon itself.

Turquoise, it seems, is the thread that ties our home together. We have the pale aqua rug and accents in the kitchen/living/dining room, the bold teal wall in the master bedroom, turquoise towels and accents for the guest bathroom, and the turquoise futon in the second bedroom. Initially, Mom was concerned that my decorating scheme lacked cohesion, but I really think all the rooms work nicely together. I'm proud of how our home is coming together, and I can't wait to share more pictures with you once we get the rest of our furniture, and start hanging the curtains and artwork. Those final touches will the things that turn our new house into a real home.

We still have a long ways to go. The bathrooms need to be painted, and there is new hardware to install in the master bathroom. We've purchased new light fixtures for most of the rooms, and those need to be installed. Hanging the curtains is a big priority for me, since we went and bought a condo with an eastern exposure, even though I vowed never to do that again after living with the sun streaming in my windows in the morning for the past four years. At least now, in my own home, I'll finally get the curtains I've been wanting to block out the sun's offensive early morning rays. That's one perk of owning your own place.

Still, I think we're in good shape headed into our move next week. The main rooms are ready to receive furniture, and I think I've made enough progress in packing that I won't be up until 3 am every night this week finishing it. Let's do this thing!

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