Friday, August 27, 2010

This Week

we payed off Eric's student loan!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!, from his Master's Degree. This is the last of our debt that has to do with school and premarriage. We have made a lot of sacrifices to get rid of debt associated with that Masters Degree. Now onto Eric's truck and the mortgage...

I have had to tell myself over and over that
"squirrels don't have a lot of nuts because they make them, it is because they save them"

Fist pump, yes please.

Yesterday I bought these 2 melamine plates at Tuesday Morning. If you are a fabric enthusiast you will understand why I had to buy them.
Heather Bailey's Freshcut fabric + melamine plates = almost as good as a chocolate cupcake with PB icing. This was the first designer fabric I bought way back in 2006 after we had remodeled our first kitchen. I made cloth napkins to match our yellowish cream walls and green cabinets. We still use those napkins every single day and the fabric is just as great as it was 4 years ago.

One of my favorite things to do is to go to a thrift store during lunch. I am not the best treasure hunter sorter so I am usually in and out within 20 minutes. I do this about 3 times a week. Sometimes it is a gold mine, other times nothing.

Someone's trash, my treasures for the week are a 99 cents sun mirror frame without the mirror, 2 bags of doilies for $1.21 each for winter project doily table runner, a $1 brass candle holder that will be painted for a coaster for Eric's nightstand, and a .75 cent book called "Dutch" about Ronald Reagan. Who knew his nickname was Dutch :)

I am a really cheap person with clothes. I hate to spend over $20 on something and that is usually at Gap on a pair of pants on super clearance.

Most all of my clothes come from the thrift store. I am very fortunate to live in a college town where there is a high turnover rate for cute clothes and girls my size. That sentence sounds funny and as a matter of fact the turnover rate on cute girls in a college town is quite high as well I am sure haha! I need to do a fashion show on here with all of my finds, you would be amazed.

This week I bought this shirt dress with tags for $3, usually more than I will spend at the thrift store. I told you I am cheap, I like to wait for 1/2 price or $1 days. Eric wears the old style camo to hunt in and these pants were brand new as well. They were $5 but I have learned not to wait on the camo stuff, it goes fast. And brand new, can't beat that.

This week I also read this quote on a blog I love to read,
"Comparison is the thief of joy."

So true!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Painted Interior Doors

Sorry I've been MIA so much lately. Today it will be the 53rd day we have a temp above 90 (usually above 95) and I am getting burned out. Maybe with cooler temps and football bringing some excitement to this town I will get inspired and motivated.

I do have subjects to blog, we have done a lot around the house this summer but have a few little things to finish up. Install kitchen lighting and scrape and paint window seals when it cools down, we are also finishing up our porch ceiling.

But I am already thinking about a new project.
I've wanted to paint our interior doors since we moved in. I think that doors can add a lot to a space so I want mine painted, to stand out a bit. But we only have 4 shared space doors that stay shut at all times, only 4 doors you would see the darker color on at all times. I'm not sure if it would even be worth it?

I think this is Nate Berkus

photos 1-4 via lavender & lilies

While I do love the black doors, I don't think my house is right for straight up black doors. I was thinking more along the lines of Sherwin Williams Urbane Bronze.

To me it has the right mix of brown, grey and black and much more conducive to my house.
Here are some pictures with a brown tone in the paint instead of solid black.

my favorite design photo ever xoxo - Barbara Westbrook

Southern Accents

Southern Accents

So what do you think? Design interest or design black hole? Waste of time since our doors don't stay shut?
For a few dollars on a sample paint and about 20 minutes of time I am thinking of painting a hall closet door. Painting doors may turn into a perfect winter project. Will report back...

Friday, August 20, 2010

Martha Kitchens

This fall Martha Stewart will be selling cabinets & countertops at Home Depot. I'm not surprised her name is on EVERYTHING at Home Depot. I am excited about seeing her new line in person because her team is always cranking out something great.

I couldn't find pictures other that the ones she had on her blog, but they give an idea as the style she is going for.

So far I love it all. Colors, style everything!

Here is one of the kitchens finished in her cabinets, hardware and countertops. I love the little display area between the glass cabinets. And the vent hood cover sort of reminds me of ours with its boxy shape.

I love how they were able to use just a few inches of space and turn it into something so useful

I was able to find the hardware online at Home Depot. She has some great options with great prices.

Bedford Beehive Knob Love this one!!

Bedford Nickel Catch in nickel, polished nickel, and brass

This is one of my all time favorite styles and for half the price of Restoration Hardware's version

So there you have it. I haven't noticed anything being changed out at our Home Depot but will make sure to swing by the kitchen section next time we stop by HD, which I am sure will be within 1-3 days, that is usually our schedule for home improvement stores.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Staining Matchstick Blinds

All of our windows in our house have the matchstick blinds. The 2" white blinds wouldn't fit our windows unless we outside mounted them plus the windows and casings are off white so they would have to be custom ordered $$$. I prefer inside mount blinds and not spending a lot of $$$, so lucky for us matchstick blinds are the popular thing right now.

The only problem is the wood has faded over the past year. All of our blinds stay in the same position all of the time, except our bedroom ones. I can't stand closed blinds. So the fact that they were 2 different colors due to the sun wasn't a big deal, you couldn't tell. But it was a big deal that they were ugly and had taken on an orangish tone.

Before as modeled by Claire

The darker is the original color and it faded to the lighter color.

I took my favorite painting/staining tool ever and stained them last weekend.

It didn't go as easily as I had planned. I thought I would just take them down run the stain across the blinds and be good to go. But it was a little more work. In some areas the stain went through the slats to the front blinds so I would have to wipe it off since I wasn't staining the fronts. Luckily it all pretty much came off so you can't tell.

And this is the after once again modeled by Claire Belle.

So much better. I used leftover exterior stain from the grill cabinet and adirondak chairs. It is UV protected so I am hoping it will prevent them from fading.
I still have the bedroom blinds to go and I may think about staining the front of the blinds. But I'm waiting until fall. 100 temp + 895% humidity didn't make this project any easier.

**Several people have asked me in the past about matchstick blinds. I really like mine but they aren't private. You can see through them during the day to the outside, but that means at night you can also see through them to the inside! Plus they are a raised or closed kind of blind. I keep mine half up in all of my rooms. I am really OCD about all of the front windows looking the same. The ones in the front bedroom are dummied (covered by our "curtain wall") so they stay half up as well all the time.
In the bathrooms and side windows in our bedroom I do have privacy liners. They do sell them, but I am cheap and particular so I made my own. I didn't want them to be white (didn't want them to stand out) so I just took brown broadcloth and hot glued little dots on the back of the blinds to attach it. Works great and blends in with the blinds. And I have removed the cloth when I switched some blinds around and since I used glue dots everything came off cleanly. I did have to cut it in strips so the rings on the back didn't get covered, it messes up the pull up or down system. Or you could cut little slats for the rings or if you are an overachiever you could do button holes for the rings. Hope that helps!

Stuffed Baked Peaches

I made this quick dessert over the weekend. The stuffed peaches were a great treat, and they don't have too many ingredients so you may have everything on hand. Plus they aren't bad for you as desserts go, fruit without being covered too much in sugar. Good enough in my book.

2 peaches, washed and cut in half lengthwise, pits removed

⅓ cup quick cooking oats
2 tbsp brown sugar, packed
1 tbsp white sugar
½ tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp butter or margarine, melted

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Combine the oats, sugars, cinnamon. Add the melted butter and stir to combine.
Cut peaches in half and remove pit.
(I had to make a larger hole that the pit left to fit more stuffing in my peach.)

Fill the cavity that used to hold the pit with the oat mixture. Press down lightly.

Place each peach half skin side down in a baking dish. Bake until the stuffing is crisp on top and the peach is tender, about 15-20 minutes.

Serve with a big scoop of good ol vanilla ice cream.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Happy Birthday Angie!

Today is my sister's 27th birthday. Her husband was out of town for work last night so she stayed with us. We walked down to our favorite restaurant to celebrate the day she came to earth.

I really need to practice with my camera. I am really bad at all pictures, but especially low or no light situations.
The first picture turned out like this...

Adjust the ISO and shutter speed and I get this....

Ugh just give up and use the flash already, food still out of focus

Then we walked back home and baked cookies.
Eric had to go to the office to turn on the irrigation so we acted like it was a party for her.

Eric checking on every little divot after the scrimmage.

In just 23 days this will be the hottest spot in town. 50 yard line, center of the field.
The grass will be green by then and this spot will be painted orange and blue. And there will be 87,448+ more people there besides us.

As a party favor she got a Gatorade

Then we closed out the party by turning on the water and going home to eat our cookies!

Happy 27 Angie! Hope it is your best year yet!!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Backdoor Glass Done

We have lived in our house for over a year, during that time we have made about 64 to do lists. Everyone of them has had change back door plexi glass. And all 64 have not had that task marked off until this past weekend!

This is how our door has looked for over a year. The bottom pane of glass is actually plexi glass, it had a Jagermeister sticker that wouldn't come off, tons of scratches, and a hole that I had covered with tape to keep the air in/out. It was realllllly ugly and every time my nephew was at our house he would tell us how bad it looked. haha

So Saturday Eric took the molding off around the plexiglass

And I kicked it out!!

After Eric took measurements we went to Lowe's and bought our brand new scratch, hole, and sticker free glass. He put it in and I started to peel some paint off the door that was chipping. Well that turned into this...

The door had to totally be repainted. I really want a green front door but we are sticking with black in the front for now. But now all of my back doors are painted green! I love it!

The glass is so clean and I love my green doors!!

The door color is Glidden Spanish Olive. Last year Glidden was giving out free paint so this was one of the colors I chose!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Happy Weekend!

Gigi's Cupcakes opened today and I had to try them out!
I bought the Miss Princess -
white caked baked with fresh strawberries, topped with a cream cheese frosting, pink sugar crystals & a pink fondant crown!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Announcement Party

Have you ever heard of an announcement shower?

I had not until my friend Hannah announced she was having a baby and our other friend Susan volunteered to throw an announcement party for her. It is a chance to get together to have the big baby gender announcement.

So Monday Hannah was nice enough to keep a secret all day from us so our supper club could get together that night for dinner and the gender announcement.

First you had to pick boy or girl onesie

Then you had to pick pink or blue cupcake

Then we all bit into them at the same time to see what color sweet tart was hidden inside

So far this year 2 of the 3 babies born into our group were boys, now one more to add to the mix!
Hannah is seamstress extrodiare so I can't wait to see what she sew up for baby D.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Pioneer Woman Supper

Last week I got together with some friends for a Pioneer Woman's supper.

Everything was made using recipes from
The Pioneer Woman- from her cookbook and website for every part of our meal.

Ree was our honorary 6th guest.

For appetizers we had Hot Artichoke Dip and Holiday Bacon Appetizers

For the meal we BBQ Meatballs and Fresh Green Beans, One Way

Fresh Corn Casserole, Buttered Rosemary Rolls,

Crash Hot Potatoes

For our salad Elizabeth made PW's Homemade Ranch Dressing

Not pictured is our desserts which we had

Quick & Easy (and Yummy) Apple Tart

and Another Pie - Peanut Butter

So here is my plate. I wish I cooked this kind of food every night and was able to eat this kind of food everyday. But Pioneer Woman's recipes aren't known to be the healthiest out ones there. Everything was so delicious as were the left overs the next day.

Here is the low down

I wasn't crazy about the green beans (made by me), not cooked enough or enough flavor for me, but the next day they were perfect. The next time I make them I will do so the night before.

I accidentally used half & half in the corn instead of whipping cream, but it tasted perfect. Classic V cooking mistake.

The meat balls were so yummy. We never eat them so it was a great treat. I hope I can convince Eric to eat them so we can have them again soon.

Crash hot potatoes we eat pretty often at our house but Elizabeth used butter potatoes so they were extra yumms.

Rosemary rolls were a great treat as I try not to eat bread with my meals, especially slathered with warm melted butter. And they were refrigerated rolls not homemade!

The homemade ranch dressing was really creamy. It was nice to be able to taste fresh herbs, much better than the bottle stuff!

I am always a fan of artichoke dip so I ate the dip right up. Loved the bacon wrapped crackers as well!

The dessert was so good. I've never had peanut butter pie with such good crust. PB pie is definitely a favorite.

Loved the apple tart as well! It was just the right amount of sweetness with the fruit.

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