Friday, December 31, 2010

Hammers & High Heels: Top 10 Posts of 2010!!! Can You Guess #1???

WOW! We can't believe how fast 2010 has gone by!  We decided it would be fun to list out our top 10 favorite posts of the past year (and of all time really since this is our first year blogging). These really are our favorites, some match back to our 'Popular Posts' list and some are just the ones that we still look back at and cringe or laugh out loud at. Can you guess #1?

#10: New Chalkboard Made From An Antique Window
 This DIY Decor Project was my favorite of the past year.  I loved that I was able to take something original to the house that was just stuffed down in our basement and tranform it into something lovely that we can enjoy.  Our chalkboard is now in our kitchen nook.  We love writing fun notes to each other on it or holiday messages.  Even better than that is when our guests leave a message when they visit. Now I have to decide what I'll do with the other antique windows and doors in the basement!

#9: The Kitchen Nook
Boy, our kitchen nook was quite the cluster when we moved in! Who likes a small space with giant cabinets?!? This project was very multifaceted! Even when we thought we were done, it kept changing and evolving into what we have now.  This project included cabinet removal, painting, tiling, hanging new cabinets, creating an antique chalkboard, adding a new butcher block table top, and finally sanding and refinishing a table and three stools.  I cringe to think of how many total hours went into making this small and unique space look the way it does today.

#8: A Brief History of the Homewood Neighborhood in Minneapolis
How wild is it to get a glimpse of what your neighborhood looked like almost 100 years ago? I loved every second of researching our neighborhood's history. I like to think that in order to know where things are going you have to know where they have been, and this neighborhood has been through a lot! Everytime we walk the neighborhood and see those stone pillars it is fun to know the story of why they are there. I love our neighborhood and neighbors, like I said, I can't help but be passionate and hopeful for NOMI and now we are apart of the story!

#7: Henri's Room Reveal! Plus Our 'Handmade' Artwork
I was so excited to have the chance to decorate a room outside of our house, even better it was for our cute little nephew, Henri!  It was fun to look at the space, budget, research ideas, and then decor shop for a whole room.  The best part was when my sister in law told me that Henri just kept pointing and giggling at all the new things in his room. To me that meant he loved it!

#6: Bathroom Redo #2 is Complete! 'After' Pictures!
Posting 'after' pictures of a project is definitely the best part.  We like this post so much because this was the first time we did a great job documenting our progress along the way with this bathroom redo (which was a redo of our first redo). This bathroom also used to be one of the rooms I was most embarrassed of in our house since the floor was deteriorating. So happy Alex surprised me by tearing it up!

#5: Operation Ugly Yard Overhaul Part I: Clearing the Right Side of the Yard
Clearing all the plants and woodchips in our backyard was the WORST PROJECT that we have worked on... EVER!  To review everything that we went through in order to plant some darn grass in our yard so the dogs could run and play click here. This post is memorable to us because we still look at that 'before' photo of our backyard and say 'holy crap'! It was soooo bad! We also still laugh out loud when we look at this picture of Alex trying to burn our yard waste... why? Well, we found out it is very illegal, so don't do what Alex is doing. You will also scare your neighbors.

Alex and I loved comparing our first experience cutting down a real Christmas tree to the first scene in 'National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation'.  It was so much fun finding our perfect tree and cutting it down clad in lumberjack flannels together.  The blog was just so fun to write, we giggled the whole time, totally a classic!

I love, love, LOVE this post.  When you live in a very old home, you wonder what story the walls would tell if they could talk.  After contacting a very helpful man by the name of Ian Stade at the Hennepin County Library, I got to learn some of the story of our old house.  The image below is the original building card which is framed at the base of our staircase. In the link above you will also find copies of the US census for the first two families that lived in our house. Your home is a huge part of your life and what you take pride in so I love knowing the history of the little house Alex and I are trying to bring back to life.
Numbers 1 and 2 were a little tough to pick, but stair sledding landed at #2. This was absolutely the craziest thing we have done in our house, but holey moley it is by FAR the most popular Hammers and High Heels blog post ever! Click the link above to watch the nutty and hilarious videos of Alex and I sledding (and screaming) down the stairs just like Kevin McCallister did in 'Home Alone'.

What made this even more amazing though was being featured on Hooked on Houses, one of our favorite major blogs! This picture just cracks me up! Doesn't Alex look just like a little boy... with a beard, haha!

DRUMROLL.....and the #1 Hammers and High Heels Blog Post of 2010 is.........

This was definitely the best blog moment for us in 2010 so we are going to go into a little more detail. Alex and I were fans of Layla and Kevin's blog The Lettered Cottage even before we bought our house.  Once we moved in, we got tons of DIY ideas from them for our little Dutch Colonial.  It was so crazy and random that we got selected to go Junkin' at Junk Bonanza with them AND have them redo our guest room.
Part of our room redo and junkin' adventure was that Layla and Kevin were shooting a potential TV show.  So naturally with Alex and I being TV and movie geeks we were very Oooo-ed and Awww-ed at the camera, boom mic, and lighting set up in our house. We also got to do a bit of acting which was pretty hilarious!
Here's a photo from the Junkin' experience at Junk Bonanza. It was so weird walking around with a camera following us, it was a great bargaining tool though :) Alex and I can't wait to go to Junk Bonanza again next year!
After all the fun shopping Layla and Kevin got to work and made our guest room beyond perfect!
One thing you might not know (and this is also why it ranks up at #1), Alex and I almost gave up on this blogging thing around August. If you look at our posting frequency, we only did 7 in July then 3 in August. We just chalk it up that fate decided our favorite blog couple needed to come by and inspire us to keep on our blog journey.

 Blogging and working on our house has become my new favorite hobby and I am very thankful for all the new friends we have met through blogging. This blog has definitely brought some fun and pride to all the work Alex and I do on this old place!

In closing, I can't believe how wonderful and blessed 2010 has been! So cheers to all the hopes, dreams and adventures ahead for 2011!


  1. I am so glad I found you and can't wait to get inspired by your 2011 posts! Happy New Year you two new *friends*!

  2. I love your blog. I've really enjoyed watching you make your house look so fantastic - oh, and the sledding down the stairs was brilliant too!!



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