Saturday, January 31, 2015

drawer Chapter 1--Hope Chest Makeover

It's Saturday and I am just starting the Lane Hope Chest Makeover.

It's been several days years of thinking about, researching, thinking, wondering and more thinking about this makeover.

Originally I was going to paint it, but the more I thought about it, I liked the idea of staining it dark instead.

It's time.

I'm ready.

First. Clean the inside of the drawer.

How nasty is this?  I'm pretty sure this was stored in a barn or some sort of out building because there were mice here and some sort of straw like material.

Probably straw.

So after a non-successful search in the world wide web, I still had no clue as to how to clean this drawer or get rid of the felt like material.

So I thought, scrub it with baking soda or salt (or both) with a dry brush and that should clean it.  Sorta like "dry shampoo".

Right?  Doesn't that sound reasonable?

Well, it worked.

 Both ways.

Cleaned AND stripped.

As a result, I have now added another element to my project, but hey, that nasty green mice dropping covered, drawer lining is gone. YES!

It'll take another week of thinking to figure out what to line the drawer with...

Second, I've got this blonde to remove.

I got a great arm/ab workout sanding this and have decided I need a faster, less sweaty way to finish the rest of this thing.

Ok people.  I've alluded to my fear of commitment, but you must know that I had to take a deep breath (several) to just go for it and put this stain on.

Wouldn't you be a little nervous?


It's just me?

But, the stain looked black on the cloth and I just had NO idea how this was going to turn out and NO idea how I would fix it if it didn't.

Three, stain it.



Well, that's not too bad.

I didn't ruin it...



whaddaya think?

*remember the knobs I was trying out?

jury is still out.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Brian's cookies--homemade chocolate chip cookies

The term "chocolate chip" cookie doesn't quite do this cookie justice.

They're more like "everything but the kitchen sink" cookies.

But that's just the way we like 'em!

Now if you're the kind of person who likes to throw everything into a mixer then this is not the cookie for you. But if you're the kind of person who loves a delicious cookie then you'll need to get your hands dirty.

 But BONUS you can lick them. But don't tell the kids.  I won't let them "because of the eggs..."

I didn't believe the hubby when he said you need to mix the dough with your hands and I tried a batch in my mixer a while back. I don't know the science behind it, but they did not turn out. "SO Yeah", I mix them "by hand" now.

If you're "jones'n" for a "kitchen sink" kinda cookie, then roll up your sleeves.

Brian's Cookies

2 1/4 Cups (all purpose) flour
2 Sticks (1 cup) butter (softened)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup Brown sugar
2 eggs
1 cup chopped nuts
1/2 bag (11.5 oz bag) butterscotch chips
1/2 bag (11.5 oz bag) chocolate chips (semi-sweet)
2 cups oatmeal

See what I mean? There's no kitchen sink (or vanilla) in there...but nearly everything else.

Mix the dry ingredients with a whisk and then with your own two hand(s) proceed to mush the butter into the dry ingredients until they are both happily incorporated. Then you add the eggs and if you want you can continue to mix it with your bare hands, but that's where I draw the line. A strong wooden spoon will do the trick. Then add the chips and nuts and oatmeal "until it feels right"...

I realize I have used more quotation marks in this one post than any person ever should. "Sorry about that"...

Anyway... I used my trusty small scoop to keep them uniform and then I baked them for 12 minutes exactly at 350°.

These are some of the best cookies you'll ever "lap your lip around", but don't take my word for it, try them for yourself.

They look good enough to eat!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

tupperware--organizing my pantry

Okay, so I have to start out by saying that years ago, I sold Tupperware.  Not for very long and kind of against my will, but I did.  I was approached by a Tupperware Director at a little fair and she bought the necklace I made, right off my neck.  She then asked (or so I thought) if I wanted to have a TW party and hey, I was game.

The next thing I knew, I was signed up to sell the stuff.

I enjoyed it, but soon found that it wasn't my thing mainly because, well, I hate plastic.  I always look for the BPA free stuff if I do buy it and I stick with Ceramic, Glass or Metal for dishes, containers and so on and I never reheat anything in plastic in the microwave.

I've had a set of storage containers now for years that I've only half used and then gave up on them entirely because I keep my sugars, flours and salt in big glass containers, but living as far away from a store as we do, I've found myself at the "bulk" section more times than not when I'm at the grocery store.

I even tried to sell this set online with no success which may or may not be a factor as to why I'm not selling TW anymore...*ahem*


Buying in bulk has it's advantages and disadvantages and I've found that big bags of dehydrated potatoes, oats, rice and the like don't stack as well as these.

Nor does homemade granola which is where this all started yesterday...

In an effort to get more organized I've given in to using these plastic containers, well, because that's what I have and let's be honest if you have to use plastic, Tupper is 'ware' it's at...

*buh duh dum ching!*

Monday, January 26, 2015

homemade knobs--Chapter one

So I'm itching to get going on a new project.

I'm re-doing a vintage Lane Cedar Chest.

I found it at a Thrift Store over 5 years ago, but I just haven't known exactly how to re-do it.  And since I'm committing to my projects... ahem...

Anyway, so last night I was browsing the world wide web looking for vintage drawer pulls and the amber crystal knobs caught my eye and I couldn't shake it. So this morning I'm wondering how exactly would amber look on dark walnut.  Well the world wide web doesn't seem to have any help on this subject.  Does no one combine the two?  Or at least not post it on the internet?  How am I to know if it will actually work?  I don't want to spend money and wait for the man in brown to deliver them only to not like it and delay (snort) this project any longer so it gets me to thinking...

How can I make them myself?...

The answer to that question usually ends in "Oh, I have some glue..."

And a washer...

And a nut...

And some amber beads...

So now, I will either actually use them, or see what amber will look like on a dark walnut stain.

 Which is what I plan on using to turn this blonde, brunette.  

Stay tuned as this is the week for the chest makeover.


Eyes up here!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

candlestick cake plate

It's crystal clear that I have a problem.

I'm addicted to treasure hunting...

Addicted, Collector, Treasure Hunter. The titles all apply.

I may or may not have like a half dozen candlesticks waiting for tops to be glued to them...

I can feel my Hubby rolling his eyes right now...

I have some E6000 glue and I'm not afraid to use it.

Ok, I am a little...

(Do you know how many full rolls of ribbon I have that I have used and used and used over the years and have never cut?) (I have a problem.)

But I did it!!!

I committed.

I cleaned the surfaces really good and then cleaned them again with rubbing alcohol. Then I applied the glue. E6000 people.  It's where it's at.  Coming to a Super Saturday near you...

Who wants cake?

By candle light...

Friday, January 16, 2015

homemade liquid hand soap and homemade soap dispenser

I have wanted to try a "discover-ment" as my 6 year old calls it.  I've been wanting to make my own shampoo.  But since we are out of liquid hand soap, (and not out of shampoo) I settled for 'trying my hand' at hand soap.

And BONUS, I tried my hand at videography too. 

Lucky you. :)

So like the many recipes out there, I used 8 cups of water, one Kirk's Castile Soap Bar, grated, 1-2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil and one Upcycled Oversized Pickle Jar. (and some spray paint)

I highly recommend using a food processor for the grating of the soap.

I also highly recommend watching this video... heh heh heh

I didn't add essential oils as some other recipes did because the Kirk's already has a fragrance and I didn't know how lemon (my preference) would smell mixed with the already added fragrance.

So here's the best part imo (in my opinion).  I have had this idea for a while.  I wash my hands a lot and am refilling my little soap pump a lot and now I don't have to. For a long while.

Homemade XXL soap pump.

It's an old pickle jar.  You know the half gallon sized jars?  Yeah, that's a lot of pickles, but that's how we roll at this house.

Anyway, I had to "borrow" the straw thingy out of a broken stain remover bottle, and spray paint the lid, but it was simple simple simple.

Next I'll have to find a fancy label.  Or a Sharpie...

Monday, January 12, 2015

popcorn trees--winter in Swan Valley

The winter is so beautiful here in Swan Valley Idaho.  It really helps keep those winter blues at bay.

Every time I go out my front door or look out my kitchen window I see beauty.  Rain, snow, sleet, fog, sunshine or rain--I see a beautiful picture.

I feel really lucky to live here...

...because we get "popcorn" on our trees in the winter too! ;)

 Not just in the spring...

Now excuse me, I'm going outside to see what's new in the view. :)

bag lady (leather edition)--homemade leather tote

Remember the other day when I was using a gift bag for a purse?   Not anymore baby!  I built myself a purse.

I have had this leather since my 9 year old boy was a baby and just haven't dared use it.  This is the year of no fear for me.  I'm committing to my projects. I'm just gonna DO IT!

So I did...

*wiping brow*

Friday, January 9, 2015

After The Fog Lift-eth

Here comes the fog again...

So this is what happens after the fog.

I'm sure there is a wonderful metaphor in this somewhere...

It was a dark and stormy night sunless and foggy evening.  The weather advisory was issued for "freezing fog".


You too?  What is that?

You'll see...

Just keep scrolling...

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Photo Op

So my hubby calls me on his way to work to tell me of the gorgeous photo op in the valley right before going up to the Palisades dam. 

He tells me of snow covered pasture with horses in it, fog settling all around and sunlight breaking through.

So, of course I want to capture it (with my trusty camera phone) so I pull on my snow boots, throw a scarf around my neck, grab my gift bag makeshift purse (that's another post) and head out the door to go snag some bodacious scenes.

And then this...

After the rain (!) the other day that's ice. Not soft snow...

I didn't want to miss the "light show" hacking at the ice to get in the car.

So I took these...