...because home doesn't happen overnight.


Congrats to Stacy who plans on using the $100 gift card to paint her downstairs!

I’ve been unplugged for a while {and hope you have been too, enjoying your family and friends} but things are about to get all messy up in here. ‘Messy’ as in painting {we’re actually well into this project!}, tiling, installing flooring and cabinetry, DIYing countertops, etc. As much as we’re trying to avoid unnecessary waste, renovating sans scrap material and debris is pretty much impossible. That’s where the Bagster comes in.

The Bagster is a highly durable, woven bag that can handle up to 3,300 pounds of debris. It’s big enough to hold full sheets of plywood, doors and even a bathtub. It’s a convenient choice for smaller home improvement projects as the bag is larger than a garbage can but smaller than a dumpster. And with more people choosing to DIY their home projects to save money, the Bagster offers an affordable option over making trips to the dump. Simply purchase the Bagster at your local home improvement store for $29.95, take as long as you want to fill it up, then schedule a collection time online or via phone at your convenience for a flat fee depending on your area. {For all the specifics, click here.}

Now that demolition has ended and the renovation dust has settled a bit, we plan on using the Bagster ourselves to complete the nitty gritty details of our renovation over the coming weeks. In other words, we’re getting to the good stuff!!

So, what’s in it for you? Waste Management not only offers the Bagster but is also offering one lucky House*Tweaking reader a $100 American Express gift card to take on whatever project is next on his/her 2012 to-do list. Here are all the details on how to enter:

  • PRIZE:  $100 American Express gift card which has a U.S. restriction for in-store purchases but works online anywhere. Should there be an international winner, the gift card may be awarded in the form of an e-gift card depending on the winner’s location.
  • RULES:  You must be at least 18 years old. One entry per email address.
  • HOW TO ENTER:  Leave a comment on this post proclaiming “IT’S IN THE BAG!”
  • DEADLINE:  Enter before Thursday, January 5th at 9:00 p.m. EST. One winner will be chosen via Random.org and announced on Friday, January 6th.
  • WHILE YOU’RE AT IT:  Share what you’re most looking forward to in 2012. New endeavors? A long awaited home improvement project? A dream vacation? More of 2011? For me, it’s a toss up between meeting baby #3  {due this spring} and finally moving into the Underdog {hopefully before this spring}. No pressure, Handy Hubby. ;)

Don’t forget to like the Bagster on Facebook or follow them on Twitter.


Waste Management partnered with bloggers such as me to participate in its The Bagster® Bag Blogger Challenge.  As part of the program, I received compensation.  They did not tell me what to purchase or what to say about the products used for the The Bagster® Bag Blogger Challenge. Waste Management believes that consumers and bloggers are free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. Waste Management’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations.

images: the Bagster bag

12.18.11 / A Sampling

Handy Hubby is home! And not a moment too soon. I’ve been running around like a mad woman taking the boys to and from school/gymnastics, working {more than usual, ugh}, Christmas shopping, running from doctor appointment to doctor appointment {Everett developed an ear infection shortly after HH left on his business trip and I’ve had OB checkups} and gathering paint swatches from every paint supply store in town. I know I’m probably not any busier than any other mom out there. And I’m not complaining…only very grateful that HH is back to help lighten the load a little. Boy, did I miss him. Just having him here to take over a few nights of bath time and bedtime is like vacation to me.

So, yeah, did you catch that part about me gathering paint swatches? HH ordered a paint sprayer to prime and paint the Underdog’s interior. It arrived while he was away. He’s getting antsy to use it. Which means we’ve got to nail down trim and wall colors ASAP. Basically, I’ve been scouring the internet for color ideas then picking up swatches from all the different brands available around here: Valspar, Behr, Glidden, Benjamin Moore, Sherwin Williams, etc. Then I narrowed down a half dozen ‘maybes’, had some samples made at Home Depot in the Behr brand and painted out some foam board to test in the Underdog.

Here’s an unedited sampling of the sampling…

Mudroom/dining room – Thinking of DIYing white wainscoting with a darker color painted above. If you look closely, there’s a small tile sample on the floor. It’s a lighter travertine with lots of variation in it.

Family room/mantel – Definitely wanting to keep the walls light and airy in here. {Once again, that white stuff on the mantel is my attempt at naturally removing soot from the brick with baking powder + dish soap.} All this time I’ve been sold on painting the brick surround…but I’m having second thoughts.

Family room/ceiling – HH was kind enough to hold up a wall color possibility next to a white ceiling possibility. For a minute, we contemplated painting the ceiling something other than white – like a light neutral tone instead – but decided we really liked the idea of a white ceiling.

Kitchen – Trying to picture any of those with black lower cabinets, white upper cabinets and stainless steel appliances/hood. I think we’ve ousted the middle color. It’s a little too dark.

Great room – The final two??

Boys’ room – There’s a sample of the wood flooring lying in front of the white-ish foam board. I immediately decided I didn’t like the one on the far right. Looks like baby poop. I’m leaning towards the one second from the left but I like the blue-gray to the left also. Hmmm?

Master bedroom – This is the only ‘for sure’ that HH and I have right now. Our bedroom is on the north side of the house and doesn’t receive a lot of natural light so we wanted something light but warm. I think this is it. I think.

Master bathroom – This is the same blue-gray color from the boys’ room image. It looks nice in the master bath but we’d like the master bedroom and bathroom to be painted the same color for continuity. So now we’re stuck wondering ‘do we paint the bedroom blue-gray since the bath looks good in the color or do we stick with the light, warm neutral that we really like in the bedroom and paint the bath that color as well?’ Decision, decisions.

And we’re not even discussing the nursery yet. It’s such a small space – not even 10′ x10′ – that I shouldn’t have a problem painting it out with a roller {versus the sprayer} once we get moved in and I get into nesting the nursery. The hallway to the bedrooms and the guest/kids’ bath just off the great room will probably get painted whatever color we decide on for the great room walls…to keep things cohesive and flowing nicely in those small areas.

When it comes to selecting paint colors, there’s no magic wand for us. We always use samples on foam board and move them around from room to room, viewing them at different times of the day before we make any decisions.

The hardest thing for me right now is looking at all of my inspiration images and trying to bring them to life in the Underdog while staying true to our family’s lifestyle. I.e., most of the images in my inspiration folder are of rooms with white walls and as much as I love them, I’m not sure how well they’d carry over into everyday living. The kids would surely mark them up and I’m a little afraid I’d start to feel as if I was living in an insane asylum. Still, I get all googly-eyed over white rooms. Who knows where we’ll end up with our paint selections?

I’ll be sure to let you know as soon as I do.

images: all Dana Miller for House*Tweaking