On April 15, 2008 we closed on a 1955 Mid-Century Modern home in Merriam, KS that was custom designed by the late Donald R. Hollis of Hollis + Miller Architects. We will be sharing our journey as we update the house to make it our own, while trying to stay as close to the original design as possible.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

My Selfish Idea = Bring IKEA to Merriam!!

I don't know if you can tell from our pictures or not, but our lower levels remain unfurnished. We moved from a house that was just under 1,000 square feet, so needless to say, we only have enough furniture to furnish most of the upper level. So LD and I have been thinking about driving to an IKEA and renting a Uhaul trailer to bring back some furniture. However, the three closest IKEAs are all about an 8-hour drive from Kansas City. But others have already made that long drive to an IKEA.

Sam and John from "Our First House" blog recently drove to the IKEA in Chicago, and had some bad luck on their drive back. You can read all about it here: .

So, I was thinking about us, Sam and John, and another blogger who also recently drove to an IKEA to purchase furniture, and it occured to me that Merriam would be an ideal location for a new IKEA!!!

Like other communities, Merriam has been hit hard by the economic downturn. However, there are two potential locations for an IKEA here.

Potential Wonderful Locations in Merriam:

1. A brand new Circuit City was built in Merriam last year, and it was supposed to open right before the holiday shopping season. Unfortunately, Circuit City filed for bankruptcy, so the store never opened in Merriam on I-35 and Johnson Drive.

2. Merriam also has another large tract of land close to the 67th Street and the I-35 exit, which remains vacant due to the slow economy.

With those thoughts in mind, we had an opportunity to speak with Carl Wilkes, the current Merriam Mayor, and pointed out how the City's central location would be an ideal place for an IKEA. We informed him of IKEA's appeal, affordability, demographics, current locations, and potential economical boost to our area. He seemed interested and wrote down the information. Well, we planted the seed, and hope that he runs with it.

So, if you know of any investors looking for an opportunity, let them know about our idea!

This is not a real IKEA location only a dream!
In the meantime, we will probably take that trek (like many others before us) in a month or two to the IKEA in Minneapolis.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Snowy Weekend = Progress

It's been a while since I wrote anything in this blog. My sister's called this afternoon to complain that my last blog entry was on March 1st. She really motivated me to post today. I wanted to post last weekend, but we went on a road trip to Cape Girardeau and Memphis. LD's MOTF-1 teammates were scheduled to take their FEMA Urban Search and Rescue Canine Evaluation so we decided to drive out there, do some training, and support them.

Alot happened that weekend, I went to the hospital, Katy got to train, and LD got some great photos for the team. It all ended very well despite my trip to the hospital (delayed concussion from a car accident earlier in the week). Congratulations are in order to Lynn and K9 Max, Erin and K9 Pickles, Cathy and K9 Malachi, and Erica and K9 Star. All of them passed their evaluation and are now deployable. We are really proud of all of them! MOTF-1 now has 8 FEMA certified canines!!!

This is the type of rubble that Katy and the other FEMA certified dogs work on. Lynn and Max are in this photo.

The spring snow we had yesterday kept us captive in the house, which meant that we had no choice but to work on the house.

Our plan for this weekend was to continue stripping the cabinets. But somehow we managed to find other jobs that needed to be completed. As you can see, our new cabinets remain unstained and the old ones remain unstripped.

I managed to almost completely replace all of the electrical outlets and switches. I even replaced a couple of phone jacks. I was on a mission to get rid of all the grimy switches and outlets. And LD managed to paint most of the downstairs level.

LD has the soffit face left to go. At first she had decided to paint it maroon, then a bright white, but then decided that there was not enough contrast with the white. Then she got this crazy idea to paint it a pukey blue (it's the Home Depot no VOC paint called Dragonfly). Given that I have no eye for color I have to let her make most of the color decisions, but I had to draw the line on that one. She called it whimsical, but I don't think it works well in the room. She still thinks it does, but compromise is the best solution.

LD became inspired during her run today, and figured that the Dragonfly blue might not work in the room especially if we are going to buy tile for the kitchen backsplash. Then she came up with the idea of using one of the colors in the mosaic tile (urban camouflage). So now she is trying to decide between three shades of the burnt sienna color, which I am okay with.

In case you are wondering, we managed to finish installing the bathroom sink. Now all we have left to do in the bathroom is to hang the mirror, install the towel ring, and decide on some baseboards. Hey, at least we now have a second bathroom.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Half Bath-Half Done

This weekend our intentions were to reuse the wall mount sink that was in the half bath, and breathe new life into one of the faucets we removed from the master bedroom.  However, there's a difference between intentions and reality.  

Well the faucet fit perfectly; however, the lift rod did not line up with the middle hole in the sink.  I was already on the fence about reusing the old faucet (not my style nor original to the house), so it did not take much to convince LD that we needed to buy a new faucet.  Home Depot had a faucet that we both liked.  When we got home, however, the lift lever still did not line up with the hole in the sink.  So we decided to get a new wall sink.   

So this morning we drove to Home Depot, and bought the new sink.  We installed the mounting plate in the same location as the old one, but the drain was too high to fit into the P-trap (lots of other things went wrong, but I will not bore you with all of our painful mishaps).  So it was back to Home Depot to purchase a drain extender.  

I don't think we've ever had a project that took only one trip to the local hardware store.  But we were in good company.  As we were leaving Home Depot I heard a guy tell the cashier "hopefully this is my last trip today".  We snickered when we heard that.  It turned out it wasn't our last either.  When we tried hooking up the supply lines we found out that we had the wrong ones.  So we are half way there.  To be continued.... 

On a good note-LD's new desk chair arrived on Friday.  It's quite comfortable and stylish.  I want one!