Wednesday, August 31, 2011

From The Garage: No. 4 Garlic Bowl

The saga of my pursuit of a clean garage continues despite the heat. I unboxed this little bowl that I bought sometime back at a Salvation Army thrift store. I hated the color, but liked the shape. The glaze is a shiny grayish white, which had no correlation to the dull terra-cotta finish on the garlic bulbs and on the bottom.

I coated the whole thing with white and, since I prefer jarred garlic due to the heat, I didn't have garlic bulbs on hand so I put my raw sugar packets in to give it a purpose.

I will admit I tried several different touches, such as dry brushing with some french gray chalk paint and lightly buffing on some dark Annie Sloan wax. I'm sure others could have pulled it off, but the effect I made just looked like crap, so I covered it up with the white again and called it good enuf for now. I have a feeling I'm going to end up with a lot of white finishes around here by the time that garage is cleaned out.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

From The Garage: 1, 2, 3

I've made some progress on the garage mess. While I was out in the garage on Sunday thinking I might die from heat stroke, my neighbors came over and asked if I needed some help lifting. When they saw my garage up close, they asked if I was going to have a garage sale. I was a little embarassed to tell them these were just my "projects" waiting to get done ;-)

I decided to take whatever comes instead of making choices. That's why these items may seem a little random. I was able to reach 4 table legs. The top is further back and will have to wait a little bit.

Next is an orange box from Hobby Lobby that I got on sale for $1.29 months ago. I'm not sure why I bought it because I don't like the color all!

A welcome sign I bought at a garage sale about 5 years ago. It's edges are a little frayed from a few falls it took. I'm going to paint it a lighter color.

I'll be back soon with the "afters". I hear by the end of the week we're going to be down to 99 degress as our high.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Shopping My Own Garage

I don't believe I'm actually showing you this mess, but it's for a purpose.

Each week, when Friday comes around, I get the itch to go garage-sale-ing or thrift store trolling. But, when I go, I have to go through my garage to get to the car outside (the car that can't fit in a 2-car garage due to crap I have stored in here.)

At this point, I start thinking; "...maybe it's time to get this stuff un-boxed and all those projects finished or abandon them forever?"

I I need any more stuff when all this is waiting for me to get 'round tu-it? (Honestly, I can actually hear my three minimalist daughters muttering under their breath right now, even though all three are in different states from me!)

There's the pale wood bed frame that needs a color change... well, at least part of the bed frame. The footboard is here, but the headboard is down at the old house. There's also a pile of pictures, rolling bins of knick-knacks, bags and tubs of out of season name it, I've got it.

So, I guess it's time to get 'er done! I'll be posting each time I shop the garage. I've decided to do the following:

  • take a picture of each item I 'shop' from my garage, then...

  • make a decision on whether it stays, goes to a relative, or gets donated to charity...

  • if it stays, I'm planning to complete the project by doing whatever is needed to make it over before I go "shopping" in my garage again

    All this is left even though I've already taken two pickup truck loads to my mother-in-law this week. Some of her stuff was mixed in with mine since we were storing some of her stuff while she got settled in too.

I'm vowing, here and now, to get my act together and get this stuff fixed up and painted...or get rid of them permanently. Just a few simple decisions and we'll have our garage back! I'm simply tired of moving this stuff from one side of the garage to the other.

Ya'll come back soon and check my progress. Hopefully, there will be progress. Otherwise it's all going to charity. I promise.

Friday, August 26, 2011

How Cute Is This? Thank You Toodie!

One thing blogging brings you are friends you've never met from places you've never been. Sometimes these bloggy friends turn out to be, as Anne (with an e) of Green Gables would say, "...a kindred spirit!"

One bloggy friend I check on every day via the blogaspere is Toodie of Babbelot. She lifts my spirits most days with her trials and tribulations of living in the hollars of Missouri. If you haven't met Toodie, click on her Babbelot link in my 'blogs I follow' section at the right.

Toodie is super talented, does a multitude of crafts, and runs a small business in her spare time when she's not chasing chickens, baking bread or cooking up great dishes and desserts for her hubby.

Imagine how thrilled I was to receive this sign today with my blog name scrolled in wood!

I'm at a loss for words to show my appreciation, so I'll just close with thank you Toodie. I will treasure this always, almost as much as I treasure our bloggy friendship.

Monday, August 22, 2011

The Stylist

While visiting with Lily and her mama last Spring, I was surprised by how adept little Lily was at hairstyling. She often disapproved of her mother's ability to do her own hair and felt she had to take matters into her own hands to get her mother's hair in shape.

Lily may have been a little too heavy handed with the brush, as her mama wiped more than a few tears away while gritting her teeth to endure a styling session.

And, when her mama did not hold as still as her little stylist thought she should, a little scolding by Lily went a long way into getting her "client" to hold still.

But, mostly there were big smiles and, of course, the happiness that came with the ending of each styling session.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Patio Day 3: Drying Out

Here's some pictures of the completed patio. It will take several days for it to dry out so the guys can come back and wash off the haze of grout and then put a sealer on it. The sealer works much like the one you put on furniture to protect and add color.

The pink flags are where the irrigation specialist thinks we need to add more sprinkler heads...there are 15 flags in the two flower beds and around the house. You'd be surprised what that will cost, and it isn't a pleasant surprise!

Here is a close up of some of the colors in the flagstone. Each stone has multiple colors in pink, gray, brown, and a little yellow mustard. The grout is gray. We choose these colors to toughen up the house as it is red brick with white paint to age it down, but from a distance looks pink! To irritate Wild Bill, I refer to it as the Pink House On The Corner when giving people directions.

The grout will lighten up a lot as it dries. You can see the pinkness of the house in the picture below:

Here's a drain they put in the walkway to help move the water away from the house. The patio is tilted away from the house and the theory is any water will drain away.

There is still much to do. This is just the first part of our 2-year plan to turn this new lot into a shady spot to enjoy. This patio is on the East side of the house and gets morning sun and afternoon shade. It's obvious we will need to continue the walkway around the other side of the entryway, but that will wait it's turn due to $$ (as in, lack there of!)

Here's inside the entryway and the poor little rose bush I put in this container trying to save it.

When you look out the window on the right side, you get a view of the patio:

Notice how the grout dust dulls down the stone. I'm hoping it will look much better when this is cleaned off after the grout dries. Here's what you see looking out the left window. Someday, you will see the walkway continue around this side too.

Thanks for coming back to see the progress, although right now it's like a new mattress without any bedding. I can't wait to put some planters and furniture on it once it dries. It's all about decorating, right???

Now we have to decide what to plant in the two areas here. I'm thinking a white crepe myrtle in the right side one, to give some shade to the patio, add some color, and provide a little privacy for a late afternoon tea of course! ;-) You get the picture.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

New Patio: Day 2

Here's a picture of the patio through the window in the outside entry. It's the second day of the guys slinging cement and pounding flagstone into shapes. The temperature is still hitting 110 degrees or close to it all afternoon.

The cement and grout will lighten up as it dries out. For now, it's a dark gray color. Here's an action shot of the 'playing in mud' fun.

For the first time in months, the sky above North Texas is darkening up and the talk of the town is that Gainesville, a town about 30 miles West of us, actually got some rain!

You can bet we're all praying a lot of rain comes our way. The grass is getting pretty dry and, although we have plenty of water due to a huge lake North of town, it's still a lot cheaper to let Mother Nature water your lawn for you.

The weather channel shows a 20 percent chance of rain for tonight and tomorrow. Guess all the praying has helped move the needle in the right direction.

Monday, August 8, 2011

New Front Patio: Day 1

Here's a picture of the front of the house during the morning hours when the landscape crew started pulling out dead plants and a small magnolia tree.

They broke up the stone edging and moved all the irrigation out of the area, getting ready to put in a patio.

Luckily, some of the green plants are living through this drought. I'm planning on leaving just the evergreen-type plants in and losing anything that flowers.

The temperature has hit above 100 degrees for 40 days now down here in Texas, without any rain in the forecast. In fact, the weather channel showed "0" percent chance of rain in the area the last several days!

So, in the middle of this drought and extreme heat wave, we developed a water leak in the irrigation system (that's what they call sprinkler systems in Texas) and found we had standing water in the front of the house in a low area.

The resolution is to fill the area with concrete and flagstone, thus avoiding the water draining in the area. We're pulling out all the irrigation and creating a patio that will slope away from the house and run into the grass. Once we get the right side of the entryway done, stage 2 will be the left side, and stage 3 will be to remove the ugly straight walkway and continue the flagstone out to the street with a winding curvy, cottage-style walkway.

Come back soon, and see the finish to this project...or maybe I'll post pictures of the landscaping guys as the pass out from heat stroke. Either way, I'll be sure to get a picture.