Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Moved In…

Well we are officially moved into our new home.  Week one is down and we finally have internet back so hopefully I can fill you all in with some great pictures soon.  I have a busy work week that will keep me from settling in a bit more but things are looking great around here and I have a lot of plans I want to share to make things even better! 

Hope everyone else is having a great week!


Monday, January 14, 2013


This is not my typical blog post but I thought I would share since Will and I have had a lot of  questions in our new interest of juicing.  Since New Year’s we have been juicing up fruits and veggies for breakfast and we are really enjoying! 

We watched a documentary last year, “Fat Sick  & Nearly Dead” and we wanted to run out and buy a juicer!  It is an amazing story and I highly recommend watching the movie.  We held off on the juicer because they are pretty expensive and we were afraid we wouldn’t like the juicies.  We tried a few in the blender and they were ok but a little too pulpy for me.  A few weeks ago we watched “Hungry for Change” and it focused on the benefits of juicing some so we decided to take our Christmas money and gift cards and give it a try. 

I had a couple  recommendations for the Breville brand juicer so I went with the Breville Juice Plus.  (I just realized when I added the link, it was the juicer in the movie “Fat Sick & Nearly Dead”. )  It was a more reasonable $149 and I bought at Bed Bath and Beyond with a 20% coupon and I had a $20 gift card so only $100 out of pocket.  So far I have been very impressed. 

We have tried a few recipes and are really liking everything we try.  It takes a lot of veggies for just a little juice and we both wanted one drink each morning (about 10-12 oz. each).  To streamline the process I buy a lot of veggies at the beginning of each week and when I get home from the store I go ahead and wash them.

Juicing, Veggies

Then I divide them and bag them. Labeled by the drink name so I can just grab and juice in the mornings.

Bagged and Ready

Breville Juice Plus

We are mostly drinking green smoothies which have a lot of kale or spinach with watery veggies like celery or cucumber.  Green apples and/or pineapple make them a bit sweeter. So far we have not combined anything we didn’t like.

This is the Green Machine, recipe found HERE.  The Whole Living website is awesome for any healthy food.  I leave out the water since I am juicing and not blending.

Juicing, Green Machine

Green Machine Juice

This orange beauty is an April invention.  It’s 4 carrots, 2 mangos, 1/2 lemon, 1 inch ginger root.

Juicing Mango Carrot

A few of the other juices we like are listed here.

Dr. Oz Green Drink  (click on link)

I omit mint, orange, lime, and carrots

Kale Cleanse

3 kale leaves


1/2 lemon

1” ginger root

1/2 cup pineapple

3 stalks celery


Additional Recipe Info

We sometimes add carrot or pineapple to any of these.  Sometimes we omit the lemon. My advice is combine leafy greens, watery veggies, fruit like pineapple or green apple, and antioxidant rich veggies like beets or carrots.

Will swears he has lost weight after two weeks of one meal substituted for juice (he didn’t eat breakfast before).  I don’t know that I’ve lost any weight but have less cravings for greasy food.

Do any of you juice?  If so what is your favorite recipe?




**I was not paid in any way to write this post by Breville or Bed Bath & Beyond

Sunday, January 6, 2013

New Home Completed

Happy Sunday Everyone.  I hope you have all had a great weekend.  I was able to get out to the new house we’ve built in the neighborhood we are developing and I wanted to share some photos of the finished product with you. 

We decided to build this house on one of the more awkward lots in the neighborhood because we would have some control over fencing being added and landscaping to reshape this lot.  It turned out nicely leaving a nice big fenced in backyard.

Outside View of House

This house is two stories but the upstairs is currently unfinished.  The back has a small screened in porch that will be nice for sipping sweet tea untouched by bugs in the Summer! The garage is detached with a nice walkway to and from the porch into the house.

Downstairs Floor Plan

Here is a quick little look at the floor plan to give you an idea of the space.  The stairs in this house are closed off and the upstairs is completely unfinished, it would make a great bonus or game room or keep it like it is for lots of storage.

Unfinished Space



Here are some shots of the main floor interior.

Kitchen, Dining, Living

The living room, kitchen and dining area are all open to each other.  It feels like a nice big space.  The hardwood floors are one of my favorite features.  They are wide plank pine, stained dark and they feel so warm and inviting.

Hallway to Laundry

The next area is a short hallway area that leads to all the bedrooms, the guest bath, and laundry room in the back of the house.

Master Bedroom

The master bedroom and bathroom attached are nice big spaces.  The master bath features a big walk in tile shower with a double vanity sink.  My second favorite part of this house is the big walk in closet.

Quick little tour, cute little house.  We are expected to close on this house January 14th.  We have had some recent interest from a buyer but are a little unsure if things will work out.  As of now, unless things change quickly we are planning to move in after closing. 

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!




Thursday, January 3, 2013

A Kitchen Transformed

I’m so excited to show you all an actual decorating post today!  It’s one I am very proud of!!

tile close up 32

My Mom and Dad had a little problem back in August that turned into a pretty big redo.  The refrigerator they had broke and needed  to be replaced immediately.  The problem was that the fridge was inset in the wall surrounded by cabinets on both sides and when the house was built in the early 80’s refrigerators were a lot smaller! Once I stopped by to look at the options I suggested a few more cabinet tear outs that turned into a pretty big deal! Sorry Dad!! I know it was pricey. Your welcome Mom!!

The kitchen was stuck in a bit of an 80’s time warp. Here are some of the before pictures.

kitchen Before collage

You can in the top two photos how the fridge was sandwiched between cabinets on the right and a wall & desk area on the left.  The easiest solution was to bump out the wall and loose the desk and cabinets on the left side and since there would demo work I suggested that the upper cabinets over the bar area be taken down to open the kitchen up.  It meant losing some cabinet space, but it would make the room feel bigger.  My Mom wanted to paint the cabinets anyway so now was the time.

Once they bought that I really got going and suggested that since the bar cabinets would come down pendant lights were necessary, and if you are going to add lights you should replace that fluorescent light and add a light over the sink as well.  And then of course since the ceiling was a popcorn ceiling we all thought that should be scraped and repainted.  Of course with all these changes new wall paint would be in order and maybe just maybe new countertops, which lead to a tile backsplash, and a new sink.  It was all worth it! Check out the after photos! 

kitchen after collage

Wow! What a difference!  Lighter, brighter and bigger.  I love it, the colors, the tile and I really LOVE the granite.  Oh and that new refrigerator is HUGE! It is truly a transformed kitchen. 

My Mom and Dad did most of the painting themselves and they had some help with the cabinetry work and installation of the lighting.  It was a long process but worth it, they got it all finished just before Christmas.

Take a closer look at the changes.

sink b4 after

Over the sink the cut out at the top of the window was removed and replaced with a more modern look.

stainless applainces

Obviously they bought a new fridge in stainless steel and added an over the stove microwave since the last one sat on the countertop, freeing more space.


New lighting to replace the fluorescent light as well as adding pendant lights over the bar and sink.

And notice that beautifully scraped ceiling…Why on earth was sprayed popcorn ceiling ever popular? Why?!?


My Mom was 100% sure about two things throughout this process.  She wanted blue/aqua colored cabinets on the bottom and she loved the glass tile as soon as she saw it.  Everything else took some convincing ;)

New cabinet hardware was added to match the finish on the new lights.

For the new tile backsplash this area is where they now use the coffee maker.  It is a good space for a bar area, buffet, or coffee station for everyday and we wanted to do something special with the tile and show more of the glass here. 


For the majority of the backsplash we used a white 3x6 with glass as the accent.


tile close 4

Check out that granite!  It is called Vintage and it is gorgeous!


We also painted some furniture for the new space.  They have a bakers rack and we thought it would look better to update it with a new coat of spray paint and some chalk paint.

bakers rack after

bakers rack close up

bakers rack shelf

The contractor made some wood shelves to replace the glass shelves they had and we stained these a dark walnut.  The paint used was ASCP in Duck Egg.

bakers rackbakers rack after

We also painted a table my Mom found at a thrift store that had been used as a work table we think, it was pretty beat up but after she applied Bondo it was ready to paint.

We used ASCP in Old White for the base and Graphite (with dark wax) for the top.

table after


Just this past weekend she scored a deal at Marshalls on some chairs and so now the set is complete.


I didn’t really take a good picture on the before and after of the breakfast nook but it looks a lot different too.  They added bead board wallpaper and chair rail molding in the whole kitchen and you can really see a big chunk in this space.

It was really fun to see my childhood kitchen change.  It looks so great and I can’t wait to see all the final touches my Mom puts into it.  She has some pictures to hang and is planning on new bar stools eventually but it really has come a long way!  Bravo!!

before and after



Material Sources:

Lighting: Lowes Home Improvement, Allen & Roth

Cabinet Paint: Top, Behr Swiss Coffee  Bottom, Benjamin Moore Gossamer Blue

Cabinet Hardware: Lowes Home Improvement, Allen & Roth

Wall Color: Benjamin Moore Bleeker Beige

Trim Paint: Behr Swiss Coffee

Bead Board Wallpaper: Lowes Home Improvement, Allen & Roth

Granite: Cosmos Granite, color Vintage

Backsplash Tile: Best Tile, 3x6 white crackle subway & Martini Glass in Matte Finish


How do you like these lighter colors?  What have you done to update your kitchens?