31 August 2007
Our house is a little bungalow style cottage and I had seen a style in some bungalows where the ceiling and the top 6-12 inches of the wall are painted one color and the walls are painted a different color with a piece of trim separating them. That is the look I am going for. I still need to get the trim to separate the colors. I think I will paint it a rich chocolate brown. I have also toyed with the idea of using chocolate brown velvet ribbon instead of wood, but I am still experimenting. More pics when I get that done.
29 August 2007
Lane Collins, Danielle Anthony,Backyard Designs, Emmalynn, Alicia Bock, lilymoon,
Bella Bella, Brocade Home, Urban Outfitters,Living Etc Gallerys, designfront,
Brocade Home, Urban Outfitters. Center: Urban Outfitters.
But it was not meant to be.
I've been having one sticking point with the baseboard trim: some of it is a little warped because it is used and it had been sitting outside in the weather for a while. The nails that I had been using were not pulling it tight to the wall. So, last night I found one of these lovely screws that were left over from when we built our shed last year, compliments of my dad. They worked perfectly. Problem: I have 4 of them... I need a lot more. So, I called my dad to get the details about them so that when I went to the hardware store, I sounded like I knew what I was talking about.
Reverse threaded, finishing screw. Got it. So, I went and hit the 3 major home improvement stores that were still open and nobody had anything even close. In fact, some of them had never seen anything like this before. Not a good sign.
So needless to say, I spent a ton of time running around looking for crazy screws and not very much time at all on my actual projects. I did get all of the furniture and stuff in the living room pushed to the middle, drained the fish tank and fixed the armoire. But, the armoire still needs to be finished, the fish are still in a large jar, the fish tank is still in the bathtub, and the trim around the tile is not quite finished. Oh, and the trim is still not screwed down. Not what I had planned. We will try again tonight...
28 August 2007
First, check out the Shade Gardening pages at BackyardGardener.com. Here you can search by zone and get a list of plant links that include photos and fairly indepth descriptions and care instructions. I found a list of great options, including a whole set for "deep shade".
The second resource is a little bit less flashy, but informative. This page from the University of Minnesota Extension office goes beyond perrennials and annuals and offers suggestions of wild flowers, herbs and even vegetables that will grow in the shade.
I also wanted to throw in a little pitch for my all-around favorite garden site, YouGrowGirl.com. Great photos, great community, great advice. One of my favorite spots to lurk!
27 August 2007
Product credits, clockwise from top left: Knitting Guru, Ugly Kitty, Jennifer Gordon,
CG Studio, Celtic Goddess Jewelry, Little Quilts
Oh, and be forewarned, Etsy has been known to cause addiction, resulting in hours lost to internet browsing, diminished bank account balances and a reputation as the best gift-giver around.
24 August 2007
23 August 2007
You don't realize how much you need clean, fresh air until it is gone. Yea for blue skies!
22 August 2007
I wanted to bring something healthy to share, something cool and fresh and tasty. So, I took inspiration from this recipe in the August Real Simple magazine and made a garbanzo and couscous salad platter. It was super easy and exactly what I wanted to eat.
I just made a couple boxes of garlic couscous, let it cool and spread it down the center of the platter in a big mound. Then spread a can of garbanzo beans down one side, grape tomatoes down the other and corn down the center. Then I topped it with fresh thyme, oregano and basil from my garden. It was a huge hit and I didn't spend hours in the kitchen. Hooray for summer parties!
21 August 2007
- A fun kids cookbook from the 60s
- A cool stainless phone, just in case we ever have a land line (or for decoration)
Hopefully next weekend will be more fruitful. Maybe I will leave J at home...
20 August 2007
17 August 2007
She has been toted around for 10 years and at least as many addresses. She was pretty severely broken in one move, but I glued her all back together. She makes me happy and she had almost been lost in the abyss of our basement. Now she will have a home on the top shelf of my kitchen built-in.
There are two of those crazy fantasies that have stuck with me to this day. I still want to be a dancer and the lead singer in an all girl rock band. Now, if I could find a decent, beginner’s modern dance class, I would join right now. Not, an “I danced for 14 years and have taken 3 years off and just want to get back into it” beginner class, but a “my body hasn’t been that flexible since I was in the womb” beginner class. Haven’t found it yet, but I will keep looking.
Now about that rock band fantasy. Some of you who have known me a long time will recognize the rock girl who has gleefully popped up in conversations over the years, but those of you who have only known me in the last year or two may be surprised. You see, in my current incarnation, I am not really rocker material, always hip, but definitely not edgy. Most people who know me right now, don’t even know that I love to sing (and am half-way decent) or play the piano. My secret indulgence last year was Rock Star: Supernova, which included every episode and several visits to their website. My favorite was Dilana and I am waiting for her next album like a junior high girl.Today I stumbled across my big break in to the rock band fantasy. Ladies Rock Camp. Held in
So, look out
16 August 2007
My Brocade Home catalog came in the mail this week, and while it is usually way to floofy for me, I did find this headboard appealing. It looks easy enough to make with a large piece of plywood and a jigsaw. I would forgo all of the other girly-ness, but the headboard would be cool.
So, when I get my big girl bed and get to move the full-sized bed to the guest room, I think I will make this headboard.
15 August 2007
But in the last month or so, the dog has learned not to jump the fence and she has been roaming free (for the most part) Yea! So I pulled up the stake yesterday, along with the toy scraps and dog poo that has populated that corner of the yard. And we have been watering mostly regularly and the grass is greener and thicker.
So I pulled out my beloved garden table, which is about half way sanded and scraped right now. It found a great spot in between our maple tree and the non-blooming lilac bush.
Then I hung my wonderful candelabra in the tree and put my succulent pot in the center. Bliss! Now we have a great little spot and the yard looks a bit more homey.
I also wanted to show off my little tomatoes because they make me so proud. And they are growing in pots with my herbs, which seems to kind of affect the flavor, just a little. Yummy!
And finally, I also broke out some lanterns I got at Target a few weeks ago on super, duper clearance sale. I had been stalking them for weeks, waiting for the sale to hit 75%. I snatched them up as soon as the sale hit. I grabbed four, which are nicely framing our porch.
14 August 2007
Then, they started tearing down a scary old building just down the street from us and "ta da!' they pulled up the old slab foundation. So, this weekend, J's grandparents brought in the trailer and our giant friend G showed up to help and here is our pile of slab for the patio.
And here it is kind of laid in place. I had the boys put things in the general space that they will end up and then I am going to level them and make sure the spacing is okay. We may have to round up a few more pieces to fill in, but it is coming along. The circle area is for a hot tub that we have had, but haven't had a place to hook up. The stairs go to our back door off of the kitchen.
After all of the slab is in place, we will get a mixture of fine gravel and sand to pour between the slabs. Then we will install the hot tub and maybe I will even get some benches made. Yea! So, no garage sales, but still a big score for the house...
My other big weekend project was finishing my apricot canning. I just canned them all in a light sugar syrup and it took no time at all. I have to point out the the canning funnel and jar tongs that I found at a garage sale last year made it sooooooo much easier (and cleaner). Isn't the blue pretty with the orange apricots?
Here is a quick rundown of the process:
- Start to heat water in canning pot to boiling
- Slice apricots in half and remove pits; place in an anti-browning solution for 10 minutes minimum
- Drain and place in large saucepan. Mix 2 quarts of water with 2/3 cup of sugar; pour over fruit in pan until covered. Bring to a boil.
- Fill jars with boiling water.
- When fruit starts to boil, empty water from jars and fill with fruit and juice to 1/2 inch below top. (note: really pack the fruit in, when it looks full, shake the jar to make thing settle and continue to fill. I ended up with a few jars that were mostly juice and only half fruit.)
- Put lids and bands on jars and put into canning pot of boiling water for 25 minutes (20 for pints)
- Remove and let cool.
Here is all of the bounty I have been able to can so far. It is very exciting!
10 August 2007
09 August 2007
Check it out:
You can find some great ones on ebay both here and here. You can also try Amazon Japan following these fabulous instructions from Yvestown (a really wonderful Dutch blogger). I am going to order some this week, so i am sure you will hear more!
07 August 2007
So, Sunday morning, I loaded my ladder and boxes into the car and drove to the tree to meet Becky. It was amazing how much fruit was on this tree. Even when we finished picking, it looked like we hadn't done a thing. But, man, did we ever pick. we picked for about an hour and each left with 3 or 4 boxes of fruit. Here are my three boxes, filled and ready to go. A lot of the fruit was still green, but it will ripen in the next few days and I will can it all. I may try making chutney as well as just canning them in syrup. They are really tasty and really beautiful and I can 't wait to see them in the jar.
06 August 2007
I have to say that canning cherries is all very easy except for the pitting them part. Wow, that took forever and my kitchen was covered in cherry juice. You don't have to pit them, you can just pierce them with a needle to keep them from splitting, but I wanted to be able to put them in a pie or over ice cream without worry. So, I pitted and pitted and pitted.
- Then you simply put the cherries in a sauce pan with 1/2 cup of water for every quart of cherries and bring them to a boil. It is good to keep stirring because there is so little water that they kind of stick at the beginning.
- While they are heating, start to boil the water in your canning pot and fill the jars you are going to use with boiling water.
- As soon as the cherries boil, empty the water from the jars and fill each one with cherries, topping them off with juice, within 1 /2 inch of the top.
- Then put on your lid and your band and set them aside until all of your jars are full. (note, don't fill more jars then you can fit in your canner at one time. Pint jars can be stacked if your canner is deep enough.) Then using your can tongs to lower each can into the boiling water in the canner. For the cherries, I processed them for 20 minutes for the pints and 25 minutes for the quarts.
- Then remove them from the canner and set aside to cool for 12-24 hours, leaving 1 inch space between and around jars.
05 August 2007
- 2 "patterns" for battenburg lace (pink fabric)- $1
- 12 wooden napkin rings-$.50
- aluminum spritzer cookie press-$1
- antique greeting cards (holiday, get well and valentine)- $2
- 2 pots-free
I also picked up a giant bucket of golf balls ($2), a Simpson's video game ($4), and a video (Love and Basketball) for my husband. He was happy too...
03 August 2007
So, first I found this one below at my local builder's reuse center, Home Resource. I have gotten a lot of stuff for our remodel there including our kitchen light, siding for our shed, and hoses for our garden. I love them! Anyway, first I tried the chandelier.
I took the ugly, brassy thing you saw in yesterday's post and painted the whole thing a chocolaty brown. It looked great, but it was too long for our 8 foot ceilings. I am now saving it for a later house/project.
So, our ceiling had no light, just a gaping hole for about a week, and finally I got fed up. I went back to Home Resource and found this ugly thing. I don't even like gold jewlery all of the time, let alone a gold light fixture. So, I pulled out my can of brown spray paint and went to town.
The result is an non-ugly, 3-light fixture that gets the job done and isn't the hideousness that used to be there. (sorry the picture is so dark and grainy, I didn't get to take it until late last night)
It isn't my favorite thing, but for $8, I am not complaining. So, now I can check that off the living room list. Next up painting the edges of our floors...gettin' stuff done.
01 August 2007
paint the edge of the floor brown (because the last painter dripped white paint all over the edges)
- put up baseboard trim (cut and put in place, just need to screw down)
- paint trim
- edge and grout entryway tiles (almost done)
- put shelves above windows
cover switch plates
- paint ceiling
install a new light
- cover couch
- find a coffee table
Edited 8/29/07 to update progress so far.