Monday, December 28, 2015

A Gift For Any Occasion

 In the past, we've given our family, friends and neighbors a little package of freshly made home baked goods for Christmas. Baking bread and making Buckeyes for a lot of people can be so time consuming, especially because  there are so many other things to do for Christmas in December.

So last year and this year Mr. DIY made some handcrafted soap with different wonderful natural ingredients and wonderfully smelling essential oils. You can read how we made it HERE if you missed that post.
One of the best things about making soap instead of baking Christmas treats is that it can be done several months ahead of time.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

A Treasured Christmas Tradition

One of my favorite Christmas traditions holds special memories of Christmas dinner around the table with loved ones in years gone by. When we lived in Southern California near our family, we all gathered for Christmas many years at our home. Most years we were hard pressed to squeeze all of us around our 9 1/2 ft table. This tradition brings back so many good memories, especially because my parents were there.

The treasured tradition I'm sharing today is to do have each person read one of the prophecies fortelling the birth of Jesus or a verse of the Christmas Story (Luke Chapter 2) before dinner. I made special cards with the verse for each person to read.
Since we now live in North Carolina, there are only a few of us around the dinner table, so I've set the cards out around the house.

In the living room...

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Christmas In The Piano Room

How are you friends?

Hope all is well at your home and your Christmas preparations are either finished or nearly finished and that you are enjoying the season.
Here at Casa Fanatic, our halls are decked as they are going to be...
Some handcrafted gifts are made and wrapped and soon to be delivered to neighbors and friends.
Some gifts are even wrapped and under our tree.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Mason Jar Lid Ornaments

Working on a Christmas craft has a way of putting you in a good Holiday mood. Last year I spied a cute Christmas ornament made from Mason Jar lids over at City Farmhouse and have been wanting to try it ever since.



I already had plenty of Mason Jar lids and the chalkboard paint. I ordered the Bakers Twine, Stamps and Ink on Amazon. The direct links are listed at the end of the post. You'll also need a hot glue gun, which isn't pictured above.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

The Stockings Were Hung By The Chimney With Care...

Decorating your mantel for the Holidays really makes your home feel like Christmas.
Some years it's fun to use non traditional colors for decorating, but this year traditionl red and green just felt right.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

The Breakfast Room Is Ready For Christmas

Can you believe December is already here? 

My how time flies!


I didn't get a head start with our Christmas decorating since we had guests for Thanksgiving, but I started decking the halls in a few spaces around the house the past few days.
I'm not going overboard this year and we don't have a lot planned for December.  I'm trying not to overdo things since I'm starting to feel good lately and will keep the decorating to a minimum - if it's at all possible.

The Breakfast Room is the easiest room to decorate. As I've said before, it happens to be my favorite room to decorate for any season.



Saturday, November 28, 2015

Thanksgiving 2015

Mr. DIY and I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family and friends.
My brother flew across the country with his wife to spend a few days with us. The last time I saw him was in September after our father passed away, so it was nice to see them on a happier occasion, especially now that I'm feeling better. 
Mr. DIY cooks the entire Thanksgiving meal every year (don't hate me) and I just have to set the table and help clean up. Our daughter made some awesome crock pot mac n cheese that is really tasty. Will have share the recipe another time.
 I don't know how you ladies do everything yourself and my hat is definitely off to you!
My daughter came in to help when I was setting the table and put the centerpiece together. I think she did a great job.






Nothing fancy this year... I set the table with our everyday dinnerwear (Mikasa Italian Countryside) and a some salad plate I love that I purchased many years back at Marshalls. I used my favorite vintage "Boopie" glasses for water and champagne and set out some wine glasses just in case.


I thought the tan tablecloth needed a white topper to brighten it up a bit. The topper is part of my greatest Goodwill find.You can stop by HERE to see all the beautiful cut lace pieces I found for less than $6.



Here we all are ready to eat!


My brother and Mr. DIY made the pies.


Of course I broke my no gluten, no dairy, no sugar diet to have a slice of pie and a scoop of ice cream. 

Now that Thanksgiving is past, we still will be counting our blessings and of course, we'll be getting to the Christmas decorating.


Pam

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Before The Leaves Had Fallen

Mr. DIY is at the Mountain Cottage this weekend working on miscellaneous little projects. 
I stayed at home because I am experiencing a couple of days feeling unwell. There's nothing like being in your own home and having access to all things familiar to help you feel better. I'll be fine in a couple of days -

As most of you know, I've been recovering from lyme disease since last December and I'm happy to report that the last 2 weeks I've been feeling REALLY good for the first time in a long time. My current situation is just a response to a course of antibiotics, but I should be back to feeling good in a couple of days. I'll update you with more details on my other blog My Healing Lyme Journal in a couple of days...I promise.

In the meantime, I wanted to share some of the beauty seen at the Mountain Cottage in the past few weeks...
I've shared this one before - We pulled up to the house late afternoon several weeks ago and I had to get out and take a photo. 

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Easy Oatmeal Breakfast Bars

I don't like oatmeal. 


There, I said it.

I wish I did, because it's on the list of food I can eat.
For those who don't know, I've been on a no sugar, no gluten, no dairy, 50% veggie diet since last December and there are so many things that I don't like. You could call me a picky eater ...
and you'd be right.

The problem is, there aren't very many things I can eat for breakfast and I really needed another option. So, a couple of weeks ago, I tried oatmeal again in hopes that my taste buds have changed.

Nope, still don't like it.

I happened to see a video where the person took a mashed banana, added oats to it and baked it in the oven. 
I gave it a shot because I love oatmeal cookies and granola bars and because it is gluten free and healthy. 
But, it came up flat.
It was a great idea though...
so I added a few things.


Saturday, October 31, 2015

Drawn In By Christmas


I know it's only October 31st and it's Halloween, but ...
Last Thursday Mr. DIY drove up to Pier 1 to pick something up that I had ordered online. As soon as we walked into the door, I couldn't help myself and had to tour all the Christmas displays in the store...several times. 

Am I the only one?

I couldn't help myself. I was like a moth drawn to the light. 
Every display was so cute.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Fall In The Foyer... and a little extra

How are you friends? 

Hope you are doing well and enjoying Fall wherever you are.
Last week I told you about the first room I decorate for any season. The little dresser in our Foyer is also a space I always decorate seasonally, even if I don't get any other space decorated in the house. 

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Fall In The Breakfast Room

The first room I start to  decorate for a season is our Breakfast Room. It's an easy room to decorate; I just start by setting the table.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Fall Cleanup with the Ryobi Jet Fan Blower and HedgeSweep Hedge Trimmer



our backyard this past Spring

I've had my eye on the Ryobi 40 volt Jet Fan Blower and the 40 volt HedgeSweep hedge trimmer for a long time. Mr. DIY has an awesome gas blower, but I'm not strong enough to pull the string to get it started. There are so many times I wanted to blow the leaves and dirt off the porch, deck or our 2 patios or even the garage, but I had to wait for Mr. DIY to do it.

We also have a corded electric hedge trimmer that's really dull and I end up having to trim all 50+ shrubs by hand. This year with being sick and not having all of my energy back, I knew that I wasn't going to be able to do the shrubs by hand

I finally told Mr. DIY to stop off at Home Depot and pick up both the blower and the hedge trimmer.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Getting To The Details

Hey Y'all!
It's been awhile.

If you follow my other blog, you know I started  feeling better about five weeks ago...until my father became ill and passed away three weeks ago. 
My daughter and I booked a flight with 1 day's notice, but we didn't get to see him before he passed.
Since we knew that evening he was going quickly, my sister held the phone up to his ear, I told him I loved him and that I'd see him in heaven. 
My dad, age 90
Yes, there were lots of tears getting those few words out.

Traveling was difficult and I was glad to have my daughter help me through the airport because I couldn't have made it without her. My body just wasn't ready to travel. Mr. DIY flew out a few days later. 
I was relieved that I was able to have energy and brain power to make it to the end of the week and I've been trying to recover since I arrived home.

I haven't gotten any projects done and we're still in the middle of our kitchen reno at our Mountain Cottage. 

Friday, September 11, 2015

Mountain House Kitchen Reno - Plank Ceiling

Mr. DIY is so patient.
The kitchen walls and ceiling were prepped and primed and ready for paint.
All he had to do was paint the room and then he'd be able to bring in the cabinets we've been wanting to install for soooooo long.
I was spending a little time on Pinterest looking at Cottage Kitchens. Y'all know what happened next...
They all had planked ceilings! 
So, I asked Mr. DIY what he thought of a planked ceiling.
Oy, why do I do this?
At that point, installing a planked ceiling would mean several more weeks doing a new project...before the cabinets could be brought inside from the workshop.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Office / Craft Room Reveal

Well, I didn't make any money on our office / craft room makeover like I did with our Guest Room Makeover, but we didn't spend too much money making updating it. If you missed that makeover, you can find it HERE .

We painted our office back in May. I waited  to show you the reveal because I hadn't found any drapery panels that I liked. I ordered some from Target when I found the Guest Room curtains, but, I didn't really like them.

I was at HomeGoods a couple of weeks ago and found a couple that were perfect and Mr. DIY installed a new curtain rod for me. I also found a new bulletin board at HomeGoods on the same trip that I found the curtains. 


But, lets start at the Before:

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Guest Bedroom Reveal

I've been working on the transforming our Guest Bedroom for MONTHS!
It seems like forever.

Our guest bedroom worked for us, but I wanted to lighten and freshen up the decor just a bit since we're getting our house ready to sell and it's the first bedroom you see when you come up the stairs.
I also wanted to spend as little money as possible, which is always a challenge. 

I'm excited to share it with you today, especially because this little makeover cost us: zero, zip, nada. I even made a few dollars on the makeover
More on that later...


Saturday, August 22, 2015

Repurposing Old Art

Most of you know that we're working (slowly) on getting the house ready to put on the market. We were hoping for this summer, but it now looks like it's not going to be until next Spring. 

One of the rooms I've been working on (slowly) is the guest room. It's the first bedroom you see when you go upstairs and I wanted it to look good. The colors were dated and since we needed to make room for a special treasure from my mother in law's estate, the dark furniture had to go, especially because we were lightening things up.
What does all that have to do with the above photo???



Saturday, August 15, 2015

Looking Forward To Fall

 I know Fall is still a month or so off, but the weather cools off around here at the end of August, which is only  a few more weeks away. In fact, mornings are already a little cooler and the days aren't as hot as they have been all summer long. I know we might have another heat spell, but it's comforting to know that all that hot summer weather is behind us. 

This year I'm really looking forward to mums in the garden...


Saturday, August 8, 2015

Kitchen Progress

I wish I could say that we are farther along with the kitchen reno at the mountain cottage, but alas, I cannot. 

Mr. DIY is doing a fantastic job considering he's only spent a couple of weekends working on it this year. With me being sick and not being able to travel, plus he was working on our house trying to get it ready to sell this summer.
 We decided that's not going to happen this year, so we turned our attention back to the mountain cottage and figured we could spend some time there while the weather is good and then when it gets cold again, we could finish up our house for next Spring.
I've made a lot of progress and am a lot better, but I still wouldn't be able to get the  house ready to show even if the house was ready to put on the market. 

Let's go back to where we started...You won't hurt my feelings if you tell me the kitchen at the Mountain Cottage was UG-LY.
Seriously, have you ever seen a kitchen in need of more help?



Here's the plan that was done for us where we purchased our cabinets. Mr. DIY is going to build some open shelving and a custom stained wood hood on the stove side.


We were all set to demo the kitchen when I realized that the closet in the kitchen(long story) would make a great pantry. So we took a couple of months to build a custom Vintage Style Pantry
I'm so glad we built this before we got started because it holds a lot. We are using a low, wide dresser in the living room for our counter and prep area.

Once Mr. DIY got started, he had quite a job wiring for all the electrical and installed quite a few can lights. I don't know how the previous owners were able to see in the kitchen as it was really dark and only had 2 lights.

A couple of weekends ago, Mr. DIY came up by himself because the lawn hadn't been mowed in awhile and he painted the entire room a light blue. It's going to look great with the white cabinets. 
The paint color is Topsail from Sherwin Williams. I'm so proud of myself because it was the first and only sample that I purchased! 



After he painted, he cleaned up the entire kitchen and came home.



I really have a patient husband because he was all set to install cabinets, when I decided our Cottage Kitchen should have a plank ceiling. It took us about two weeks of priming and painting the boards at home to finish up. He made a special trip to the house to bring the boards up so that they'd have time to acclimate inside the house before he starts installing them tomorrow. 

 And that's how far along we are with the kitchen reno. 
One thing being sick has taught me is that it will get done, when it gets done, but I still am looking forward to getting those cabinets in!

This is my first time here since May and the weather is really nice. 
I hope you're having a great weekend.
Thanks for stopping by!

Pam





Saturday, August 1, 2015

Reclaimed Wood Coat Rack

We're still plugging along doing little projects to get the house ready for sale. We're resigned to the fact that it's going to take us most likely until next Spring; which is ok with us.
This weekend, we're working on prepping the boards to install a planked ceiling at the kitchen at the mountain cottage, but in between coats of primer and paint, Mr. DIY did a little project for me.


Friday, July 24, 2015

A Simple Summer Tablescape

Do you keep your table set?
I like to keep our breakfast table set because it looks pretty and it's an easy thing to do.

For my simple summer tablescape, I used dishes, flatware and accessories  I already had. 
These little votive holders are my favorite. I found them at Target a couple of years ago.  Add an electric candle inside, especially if you have little children or curious pets. That way, they don't pose a fire hazard, but still look pretty.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

A Little Painting Project

How have y'all been?

I haven't posted in awhile or been on Facebook or Instagram much since Sunday June 28th because I had a.. a...
well, we'll just call it an episode...

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

New Paint For The Basement Family Room

The basement painting is finished! Well, everything but the outside door is anyway.
We felt the need to lighten things up, as basements, even walkout basements like ours, need all the light they can get. I even put a couple of thin coats of grey on the previously black lanterns to lighten things up.


The basement paint before wasn't too dark, but all that brown just made things, well dark. Everything just blended in. 

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Lighten It Up With Paint

Mr. DIY is still working hard on the project list and trying to get things done and I've had more luck finding things online to organize and spruce up the house. 
This week I finished an little afternoon project.



Friday, June 12, 2015

From Blah to Beautiful: Master Bedroom Re-Reveal

Our Master Bedroom is finished...
It's amazing how a few colorful accessories will make the room so much better when you're decorating a space.
It's also surprising to me that I did all of this in a week! 
When I'm looking for something, it usually takes me forever to find something I like, but I lucked out!

On Monday...

Saturday, June 6, 2015

New Paint For Our Master Bedroom

Mr. DIY finished painting our Master Bedroom a while back and I finally took some photos of the room. 

We're plugging away on the "get the house ready to sell" list. It's a long list and with him doing 90% of the work, it's going to take several months. 

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Buying and Selling On Craigslist

Do you buy or sell things on Craigslist?

I've been loving Craigslist lately because we've been selling some furniture recently ...more on that later.

I've got a challenge for you. Can you tell which armoire I purchased on Craigslist and which one I paid full retail for??? 
Take a guess. 

If you looked inside, you'd probably see that one is a little more worn than the other and guess that it was the one that was purchased on Craigslist...
...and you'd be 
WRONG!
 I purchased the armoire on the left at least 14 years ago  retail,  then about 6 years ago,  I thought a matching one would look good, so we found a matching one on Craigslist for about a third of the price.
Gotta love that!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Repainting The Master Bedroom

Now that the new mulch is spread in the garden, it was time to start one of the many projects inside the house.
Today we started on the Master Bedroom repainting. At least, Mr DIY did. 
My fatigue has been pretty bad the past couple of days, so I'm not much help. 

It's a big project because everything needs to be painted...
the ceiling, 
the walls
doors, 
and all the molding.



Saturday, May 9, 2015

Spring Garden Tour 2015

The mulch in the garden is all spread.  
Yippee!
Check one Spring chore off the list.

I always love how fresh the garden looks in Spring once the mulch is all spread.
We waited for dyed bagged mulch to go on sale at Lowes Home Improvement and then had them deliver 4 + pallets of mulch. 


Instagram photo




























Saturday, May 2, 2015

Another Painted Vintage Style Stool

Mr. DIY made me a little primitive style stool awhile back. I liked it so much he made me 2 more.

The last stool I painted with a mixture of black and light grey paint I already had. I painted this stool  with some Satin Valspar paint, then sanded down the edges for a slightly distressed look.  


I  might put a coat of satin poly on it or I might let it get naturally distressed a little more. 





We've finished the outdoor Spring chores and the garden looks great. Will have to share it with you next time.
If you'd like to see my other vintage wood stool, you can see it HERE.


Hope you are having a great day!


Pam