Chillin' at CRT on Xpu Ha Beach

Chillin' at CRT on Xpu Ha Beach
How I'd spend every day if I weren't redecorating, cooking, sewing and blogging!

Friday, April 11, 2014

California Dreaming

How do you get through the work week and make it to the weekend with your sanity somewhat intact? Frequently I manage to make it through the week with the help of music, prayer, counting my blessings or dreaming about vacation.

We continued to work on the pantry project last night and it's coming along. Last night after work - I painted! And paint ALWAYS makes things look so much better. Paint is like a miracle face lift for things that are tired and dirty and need freshened up. I had a bit of my paint in my hair last night and I just remembered that I didn't have my honey to check to see if it washed out.  oops!

BEFORE - the lighting is really tricky in a closet this small
AFTER - TA DA!
Even with tricky lighting you can see it's an improvement
At least it's clean and all one color and yes that color is BLUE
Is that my shadow? I think it is.
After 4 nights of working on the pantry after working all day at the job that pays for projects and such (plus major spring allergy issues) I was super tired this morning. On my way to work I was thinking of vacation.  Because after all, isn't that one reason we go to work?  So we can play?  

Work to live, not live to work - that's my motto!

My parents, who are originally from Oklahoma and Arkansas, met and married in California, then moved backed to Oklahoma to live forever.  My Dad's parents, brother and sister stayed in California. My aunts, uncles and cousins still live there.  Because of this, many of our vacations when I was growing up involved road trips from Oklahoma to California and visiting family. Nothing was more fun to my siblings and me than visiting our cousins in California.

As an adult, I've made several trips to California with my own family. SuperDave grew up in a military family and spent his teenage years in California, so we are both familiar with the left coast.  We are currently booked for 10 days of fun in the sun in California this summer.  Away from the 100 degree temps of Texas.  Ten days visiting with family, playing and seeing some amazing natural beauty.  My baby girl is finishing up with beauty college in less than two months and we are taking her on a fun trip before she begins "real life", working 40 hours a week (or more).

On our list of things to do in Cali is a 2 day drive down the Pacific Coast Highway from San Francisco to Morro Bay.....in a Mustang convertible!  So I'll be checking off an item on my bucket list in a couple months.  I expect to have some beautiful west coast photos to share with everyone when I get back.  Scenes like this one.  sigh

Photo credit
And that my friends is how I get through the 40 hour work week...a little California Dreaming.

Have a great weekend!

Much love and laughter,


Laura


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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Pantry Project in Progress

It was a long cold winter.  At our house, besides the cold we faced an auto accident, illness and surgery.  But after months of doing very little beyond working at our paying jobs, eating, sleeping and repeat, last Sunday afternoon we, quite unexpectedly, started a project. 

Super Dave had shoulder surgery in January and after 6 weeks in a sling and several weeks of PT, he was feeling the need to do something productive.  So after talking about it for at least a year, last weekend he decided it was a good time to start the renovation of the pantry.  And although it wasn’t the best timing because our schedule was pretty full for the next week, I wasn’t about to turn down the opportunity to make the pantry more functional.

Our kitchen has a lot of lower cabinets, but our “pantry” is actually a little closet with 4 shelves 24” deep and about 31” wide plus a half shelf.  This means you have to empty the stuff on the front of the shelves to get to the stuff in the back unless the stuff in front is small.  Re-organizing it never remedies the problem for long.  We also keep breakfast items, chips, crackers, paper goods, etc. in other cabinets in the kitchen.  We’ve got stuff spread all over – just keep opening cabinets, you’ll find food eventually.  The only good thing about the pantry is an awesome spice rack on the inside of the door.


My plan is to (have my husband) cut out the middle of the shelves so they only run along the back and two sides. This will leave a tiny bit of space in the middle to step squeeze into the pantry to access items. This will be especially handy for the stuff on high shelves that require a step stool.  Also, we will add a battery powered motion sensing LED light because the shelves go up higher than the door and it is dark up there. And who doesn’t love good lighting?  It’s just so much easier to see stuff when a space is well lit.  This is especially true when you are getting older every day like the two of us.

If you are wondering if I am exaggerating about how bad the pantry is let me help convince you with a photo. Of course I didn't think to take a picture until we removed two shelves and a large amount of food.



You can see I've tried to improve it by using baskets that hang under shelves and risers to stack stuff. In the last 4 days I've emptied the pantry twice. After the second time, I told SuperDave that was it until the work is done and I can put it back in all it's organized splendor.  I have a jewelry party on Sunday, but if the kitchen is a mess, it's just a mess.  I can always hang a sign that says, "Pantry Project in Progress"


Here's a shot of the top half-shelf.  It's way up there! And difficult to reach over the other shelves standing outside the pantry on a step stool.  I'm not sure what that is on the ceiling but it will be gone when I'm finished.  You can't see up there without a camera flash.


And then, there's the floor. We keep a bunch of stuff on the floor of the pantry.  Partly to cover the vinyl floor covering that is still there from the mid-1980's.  I have no idea why they didn't put tile inside the pantry when they tiled the floor (so long ago it needs replaced.) That's another story for another day! I have plans (for SuperDave) to greatly improve the floor of the pantry too - because I'm going to be standing in there in my bare feet now that the weather has warmed up.  I'm embarrassed to show this picture but I promise that at least some of this filth is from the demolition. Some of the debris is an entire box of toothpicks I dropped while clearing out the stuff. (at least it wasn't a glass jar of jelly)


Well, that's it for today.  You'll be impressed with the quality of the work my sweetie is doing on the shelving.  He's going above and beyond what is required for basic functionality.  I swear you would think someone was going to post pictures of his work on the Internet or something.

Much love and laughter,


Laura


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Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Chalk Painted Jewelry Armoire

It's been quite a winter at our house. My last post was shortly before New Year's Day and YES we finally got to have a Christmas celebration with our children and grandchildren on that day! We even managed to get a photo of everyone all at the same time!  This is my Christmas miracle for 2013 - or my New Year's miracle of 2014 depending on how you look at it!  Anyway, I was VERY happy.




After this we quickly got to work taking down all the decorations and putting them away because SuperDave was scheduled for shoulder surgery on January 21st and would be recovering for a few months after.  Sometime in the first two weeks of January I happened to find this jewelry armoire for sale and picked it up for cheap. (because I needed something else to do)




My plan was to paint it either blue or silver, but we all know how plans go.  I decided to buy a ready made One Step paint and the French Blue turned out to be very light. Not the color I was going for. But painting this small item was very time consuming with all those drawers so I was NOT going to start over because I had one day to get most of it done before time for surgery!


In the right (or wrong) light it almost looks white.



So what to do next?  I brushed silver over the french blue since I was painting the pulls silver.  I'm pretty happy with the result and that is a good thing.



Because 5 days post surgery I came down with THE FLU. I'm talking the bad news, feeling fine at 2 pm and at 5:30 I'm really sick flu.  The flu that had me coughing so hard for a week that I strained the muscles around my torso and breathing and coughing was very painful.  Now, 18 days later I'm just starting to feel human again.  And yes, I had my shot, I also used hand sanitizer and washed my hands so much the skin was dry.  You don't want this stuff!  I hope I'm now immune for life. haha

January is usually a nice, calm, quiet month around our house, but not this year! Fortunately, my SuperDave is recovering well from his rotator cuff surgery, I'm mostly healed of the whiplash from our car accident on Thanksgiving Day and I'm almost recovered from the bad news flu bug.

Our forecast says the weather is going to warm up and the sky is sunny again today.  I think there is a tiny light showing at the end of this long winter tunnel and I'm MORE THAN ready.

Much love and laughter,


Laura


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