New Year’s Resolutions and Pudding

I haven’t accomplished too much yet this New Year, other than reading Amy Poehler’s book Yes Please.  A light (at times, poignant) and fun read

yesplease

…My favorite excerpt, I loved the simplicity of talking about getting the pudding (akin to an award in award season contextually.)  There is something about that that speaks to me.

mint-chocolate-pudding-cakes-horiz-a-1500

After a busy holiday season entering into a quiet-ish but cold New Year…I’ve had some time to reflect.

g&p

I’ve landed upon a few personal resolutions, and for the sake of accountability have decided to share.

1. Write more

2. Make delicious soups

3. Be more ambivalent

4. Be a better listener

5. Ski more

That’s it for now.  Hope it’s been a positive start and that the pudding (whatever that may be) is yours this year!

 

Christmas in Connecticut Part II

People in Connecticut love Christmas.  They leave their decorations up till Spring Break it seems.  So when in Rome, err Wilton.

It starts with ze curb appeal.

2015xmas9And towing the line between something understated

xmasdecor4yet visible from the street

xmasdecorTreated ourselves to some LED prelit trees, they are really glowy and pretty at night.  I’m excited about these as fully intend to keep using indoors well into the winter months.

2015xmas4As mentioned in the last post, I got a lot of pine roping.  I just love the smell of fresh greens and the drapey effect

2015xmas2Living room mantle houses the mercury collection.

2015xmas7I can rarely resist some faux texidermy

2015xmas11Next up, the dining room–decorated simply with Paperwhites that my mother in law started for us in Nov.  Perfectly blooming and intensely fragrant now.

xmasdecor1Of course we have to have a kresh

xmasdecor5To remind us what the season is truly about for us

xmasdecor6Bedroom mantle, also set a glow.  (my secret these days are those LED votives, they flicker and are safer than real candles)

xmasdecor2A place to display a few of my white Glassybabys to remind us of our days in the Northwest.

xmasdecor7Our final mantel/main hearth is still under construction as the little elves were making their Ginger Village to display there (or what is left of them that they did not eat!) last night.

Working on a few last decking items, including a fun way to display my husband’s  3 large acrylic cartoon displays from the original movie Rudolph.  Check back on that one!

Hoping your season is merry, bright and festive too!

 

Christmas in Connecticut Part I.

Last year in December we were in the throws of coordinating a cross country move. We moved the 4 days before Christmas to be exact.

I remember posting a picture on Instagram early in the month of December of a book that I saw named, Handcrafted Christmas and made the comment, “our Christmas is going to be the exact opposite of this…”  A friend commented back, “yeah, but next year you will be on fuego.”

Well, she was right…and I think she jinxed me.

We are up to four trees, enough pine roping to line the perimeter of a football field, and I just stamped the last of the 200 handcrafted Christmas cards (I decided to not do digital, pretty much a laborious mistake, but we live and learn right?)

2015xmas17So let’s get to it.

First, four trees you ask?  Well, let me explain the madness.

Tree # 1.  A tradition began in the NYC apartment last year when we couldn’t have a big tree we traditionally decorate at Thanksgiving.

A cute little Charlie Brown tree dug up from the yard and placed in a bucket in the kitchen.

2016xmas16Tree #2 Also cut down from our yard to hold our black lab ornaments, as we seemed to have collected a few through the years.

2015xmas1A spindly little thing

2015xmas12but the dog likes it and cuddles nightly next to the glow.

2015xmas13Tree #3 The “youthful tree” with bright lights and a collection of all those sentimental and colorful memories through the years.

Since it lacked a spire, we got a “discount” which afforded me a DIY opportunity–that was a little crazy, and I definitely wouldn’t do again.

I imagined a sparkly sputnik topper…

2015xmas5So I got a foam floral sphere thing and a bunch of dowels from Michaels-

2015xmas6and had to make a trip back for extra pink glitter paint.  At this point I’m thinking my project is really stupid and time intensive…

2015xmas15But once atop the tree it gave the tree and room the kind of scale that was needed.  Don’t let those “discounts” fool you though.

Tree #4 The “glam tree.”  Glittering and metallic.  Makes me really happy.

2015xmas14Up close-

2015Xmasand from afar.

I fully realize this gives a lot of ammo. for my friends and family to make fun of me.  And you know what, you’re all right.  However, I’ll be laughing when next year it’s a Hawaiian Christmas with no spray paint, or envelopes to lick.

For now, I guess I’m “on fuego” as my friend says.

Come back tomorrow and I’ll share mantels, exterior and more.

 

Bathroom Beautification

Still on the fumes of a health kick, I seem to have an abundance of energy (what are they putting in those smoothies anyway?) for house projects at the moment. That, combined with the fact that I’ve always worked best under pressure. And as you all know, we are hosting a gaggle for Thanksgiving.

All this motivation, added to the fact that the kitchen painting crew was here and there was an opportunity to professionally remove the wall paper–that had been driving me crazy–in the downstairs bath, seemed an opportune time to tackle the project.

I thought for a moment about picking out a new wallpaper as there are so beautiful ones out there.  But ultimately went with paint after removing wallpaper myself scarred me for life.

So let’s get to it.  This is the “before” situation, when we bought the house:

ISt08j6e5veuke0000000000The wooden vanity needed to be updated/replaced, but I wanted to keep a cabinet, as opposed to a pedestal, for storage etc.

bathre4We had leftover paint from the kitchen island and decided to keep it/paint it.

bathre3This is the moment, despite how much energy one has, where you start to question the DIY factor…

bathreBut after a weekend of persevering (and a slight amount of swearing, bathrooms are a pain to paint because there are a lot little things to work around) it looks like this now.

We swapped out the old rustic rectangular mirror for a round one we already had and were using as an accent.

bathre1The top of the vanity has several coats of varnish on it, which will help with water for short time, eventually we will get a stone top.

Added a few fun accessories…again the devil is in the details–

bathre5Like hand towels (actually they are french kitchen towels, but I love the colors) and framed a few funky Nantucket art pieces I had.

bathre6And Voila!  Still not totally done as need to work on the lighting and I see a black and white over-sized sketch over the toilet.  But for now…good enough.

Now, maybe I should focus on Thanksgiving???

 

 

 

Kitchen Facelift Lift; Phase One Complete!

Come see how the painting of the cabinets and walls turned out–looks like we will be ready for Thanksgiving afterall, with what seems like a whole new kitchen!

kitchen remodel1We made three changes only; painted walls and trim, cabinets and replaced 1/2 hardwarekitchen remodel2We painted the island three shades darker than the walls.kitchen remodel3We swapped out the old drawer pulls for antique brass cup fixtures, the bottoms were the original we may still change, but for the moment, they are fine.  Plus I ordered the wrong size:)  My friend who is also re-doing her kitchen and I commiserated, the devil is in the details.  kitchenremodelStyled with accessories I already had.

kitchen remodel4It’s hard to believe it looked like this–

renoonly one week ago.  After the holidays we will tackle expanding the island and a few other items on our kitchen wishlist.

Oh…and I also redid the bathroom over the weekend.  Check back soon for the before and after on that project.  Nothing like a little company to get a fire under our remodeling tushies.  I survived the cleanse and it’s given me a freakish energizer bunny kind of energy.  We shall see how long it lasts!

Peace!

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