Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Rocky & Friend - The Neighborhood Squirrels


are fun to watch

especially, when they're watching you.

They stayed a while...
then together they bounced down the street
 to the next squirrel friendly yard.

They'll be back ...
They always come back! 

Monday, August 22, 2011

Kitchen Cabinets...Makeover Begins

Manufactured Homes have unique features that hinder your typical remodel.   For instance, while our cabinet doors are solid wood, the cabinets themselves are a wood product wrapped in vinyl. 
We didn't want to replace our cabinets since they are in good condition, so we found a way to work around the problem.  The process wasn't that complicated as you'll see below... and we feel confident it will stand the test of time.


The Painting Process:
  • We cleaned the entire cabinet & lightly sanded the doors (Since the cabinet is a wood product wrapped in vinyl, we didn't sand it)
  • We applied one coat of bonding primer to all the surfaces of the cabinet & both sides of the doors. (Following Mfg Instructions)
  • We applied two coats of a water-based paint (semi gloss) (Following Mfg Instructions) - It went on very smoothly, and is holding up great after almost four years.
  • We painted one side of the cabinet with two coats of chalkboard paint. (Following Mfg Instructions)


This process might not work for everyone, but it's worked great for us.

See "Kitchen-Phase Two" for the rest of the story.

More links to our Remodel

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Bruschetta with Tomato and Basil

Fresh Basil from our garden...

Bruschetta with Tomato and Basil


  • 6 or 7 ripe plum tomatoes (about 1 1/2 lbs)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • 6-8 fresh basil leaves, chopped.
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 baguette French bread or similar Italian bread
  • 1/4 cup olive oil


1 Prepare the tomatoes first. Parboil the tomatoes for one minute in boiling water that has just been removed from the burner. Drain. Using a sharp small knife, remove the skins of the tomatoes. (If the tomatoes are too hot, you can protect your finger tips by rubbing them with an ice cube between tomatoes.) Once the tomatoes are peeled, cut them in halves or quarters and remove the seeds and juice from their centers. Also cut out and discard the stem area. Why use plum tomatoes instead of regular tomatoes? The skins are much thicker and there are fewer seeds and less juice.
2 Make sure there is a top rack in place in your oven. Turn on the oven to 450°F to preheat.
3 While the oven is heating, chop up the tomatoes finely. Put tomatoes, garlic, 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, vinegar in a bowl and mix. Add the chopped basil. Add salt and pepper to taste.
4 Slice the baguette on a diagonal about 1/2 inch thick slices. Coat one side of each slice with olive oil using a pastry brush. Place on a cooking sheet, olive oil side down. You will want to toast them in the top rack in your oven, so you may need to do these in batches depending on the size of your oven. Once the oven has reached 450°F, place a tray of bread slices in the oven on the top rack. Toast for 5-6 minutes, until the bread just begins to turn golden brown.
Alternatively, you can toast the bread without coating it in olive oil first. Toast on a griddle for 1 minute on each side. Take a sharp knife and score each slice 3 times. Rub some garlic in the slices and drizzle half a teaspoon of olive oil on each slice. This is the more traditional method of making bruschetta.
5 Align the bread on a serving platter, olive oil side up. Either place the tomato topping in a bowl separately with a spoon for people to serve themselves over the bread, or place some topping on each slice of bread and serve. If you top each slice with the tomatoes, do it right before serving or the bread may get soggy.
Serves 6-10 as an appetizer. Or 3-4 for lunch (delicious served with cottage cheese on the side.)
Makes 24 small slices.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Garden

"With a few flowers in my garden, 
half a dozen pictures 
and some books, 
I live without envy."...Lope de Vega

Thank You for visiting our garden...
We'll invite you back again soon!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Dining Room - Makeover

The pictures say it all!


 I didn't like the built-in cabinets in this space, and originally wanted to remove them all, but Buzz & our son, talked me into keeping the bottom ones.   I'm so glad they did.

I also didn't like the decorative window between the living room & dining room, so we closed it in with sheet rock as you'll see below.

I've gone into detail about 
how we painted the cabinets and walls in the 
Q & A section of my blog.  


We love this space.
 The built-in has been a such a positive...I'm so happy the guys talked me into saving it.

More links to our Remodel

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Dog Days of Summer

Our Grand Daughter
Looks like someone is enjoying their last days of 
Summer Vacation!
Penny started back to school on Monday,
but she's not sad... 
She's Glad!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Little Flowers

A lovely bouquet from very dear friends was fading...
Today, I split it into three small arrangements for my dining room table...
Cheerful! Joyful! Delightful! Merry!
For Dining

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I recently picked up these bottles at an estate sale 
(facilitated by "When Pigs Fly" )
and so glad I did!   
They made the perfect vases for my little flowers.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Staying Cool...

This record breaking heat is getting to all of us!

 Just been watching this little guy cool off in the Sycamore tree...
Yesterday, he was stretched out on the edge of our birdbath... 
Whatever it takes, he's trying it.

 Hang in there little buddy!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Overwhelmed or Lazy?

It's Tuesday, and it's been one of those slow moving days for me.  Could it be that I've overwhelmed myself with thoughts of organizing my crafting closet?  
You Betcha!  
So...I just decided to escape reality for a few minutes and post a fun picture I took on a recent visit to the Frisco Mercantile... Ahhh Yes!  All is well with the world!
Can Anyone Say Lazy

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Monday, August 8, 2011

Master Bath - (Makeover)

When we purchased our home, the Master Bath was the part of the house that discouraged us the most.  There was a lot of water damage, and how can I say it nicely ... well it was "Really" dirty!  In fact, it was so bad, it was the last room we worked on.  I've gathered just a few pictures to document the 
Before and After

We removed the door to water closet because it opened in front of Buzz's closet door, and when it was closed, it made the room to dark. We found the swinging bar doors at ReStore (Habitat for Humanity) and other than distressing them a little bit, we used them just as they were.  

We removed the garden style tub, and replaced it with a large walk in shower. The only downside to this is that we no longer have a window in our bath room.  

We eventually want to replace the vanity & sink, but for now, we've freshened it up with paint. We also added a light fixture that we refinished from ReStore (see link below).

The original shower was in horrible condition, and since we had opted to replace the garden tub with a shower, we decided to remove this one.  Removing it really opened up the bathroom and gave us space for the large cabinet that holds our towels and other linens. Also, you may remember, there was another door going into the bedroom between the vanity and this cabinet.  We're so Happy that we closed it off.

A few pictures of the Process

See the Q & A section of my blog if you want to learn more about what we did.
(See link below)



The remodeling process included:  
Removing the garden tub and shower, closing up one of the doors entering the bathroom (it was in front of the vanity), priming, taping/bedding, texturizing, painting, adding new flooring & light fixtures, replacing the door into the water closet with swinging bar doors we found at ReStore and of course a lot elbow grease.

We still have more we want to do, but we can honestly say that this is one of our favorite rooms in the house right now.

Buzz gave her to me just before we moved ...

I'm so glad she has a place of honor in our new home.

Homage to Buzz...

Who made it all possible
More links to our Remodel

"Whisper Cottage" Gets A Roof Over

On April 11, and only a couple of months after we had moved into our home, a storm came through that gave us quite a scare.  It wasn't until the next morning when we saw the devastation in our community that we realized how well we had fared.  

 As you can see, we did get some damage, but our place looked good compared to many of our neighbors.

You can't see our roof, but it was badly damaged.
Our dream of dreams (as far as the roof goes) had been to have a steel roof-over system installed on our home.  Buzz had been doing some research, and had even contacted Perma-Roof/by Southern Builders weeks before the storm to get pricing.  We knew this roofing system would add value as well as extend the life of our home .... however  we had a set budget for our remodel and the Perma Roof wasn't going to fit.
God is good!
When the insurance adjuster left the check for  damages, Buzz realized that the amount allowed for roofing repairs was exactly the amount it would cost us to get the Perma Roof.  What seemed like such a misfortune had become a blessing. 

To say the least ... We are Thankful!


September 2015

We moved our home this year and I wanted to let you know that the roof held up beautifully during the move.  We're still VERY pleased with it and know beyond a doubt that it's extending the life of our home ... plus it looks great.   

Added Benefits:  
Our interior spaces are much quieter, 
and our utility bills smaller.
Still Thankful!

More links to our Remodel