Tuesday, February 25, 2014

I have been real quiet for the last week, that's because we moved! I still find it kind of unreal, but it's true. We are back into our own house.

I somehow didn't take a picture of the mountains of boxes piled into every single room of our house, but my hubby and I worked non stop for the past several days putting things away. Here we are giving trailer trash a whole new meaning...

The stress of moving plus the noises of boxes and papers being shoved around was perhaps a bit much for my doggies. A couple nights ago Fie Fie and Uggie got into a big fight. Kelly ran for cover upstairs, while we tried to separate the boys into different rooms. I think Uggie stole some of Fie Fie's food. Uggie lost the fight, and for the rest of night and the next morning he moved slowly instead of being his usual chirpy self.

Other than that, the humans in the house are dealing with the move very well. We are all moved in except my piano, which comes in soon! It is good to be back home:)

Monday, February 17, 2014

My cherry blossom tree and burgundy plum tree have already started blooming! They are really just baby trees and the blooms aren't so magnificent, non the less, I always feel very happy to see the trees I planted doing well!

Friday, February 14, 2014

With the exception of serious work stuff getting in the way, my hubby and I always celebrate Valentine's Day on Valentine's Day. I know there are 365 days a year where we eat dinner across the table facing each other, but having a nice Valentine's Day experience is still special.

This year we had dinner at one of our favorite beach restaurants. We were able to take a walk around sunset on the beach, the weather was beautiful! The highlight of dinner was the chocolate covered strawberry with gold flakes, needless to say, I was very impressed!

Monday, February 10, 2014

In search of the perfect dining table!

Back in January I wrote this post about our dining room situation. For the month of December and January, I have actually been hunting for a replacement dining table, preferably in antique style with six chairs and size 40 by 60. I had been looking on craiglists to see if anything popped up. Turned out, there were actually plenty of antique tables up for sale, but picking the right one? Not so easy!

These two sets were full dining sets complete with buffet, chairs, and china cabinet, unfortunately too many pieces for my small dining room, the style also didn't click with me!

 A pretty nice one with 8 chairs, I got all excited upon seeing the picture. The 8 chairs, however, were two separate sets of chairs that didn't match, also one chair had major repair! Table was also a bit too wide in size and wobbly, I had to pass!

And then there was this French table, hidden underneath a mountain of old dusty paperwork inside a huge warehouse. The lady stored many many pieces of unused furniture and her business inventory inside the warehouse, but there were no room for a walk way. Things were just stuffed all the way up to the door, we managed to dig a pathway through the appliances and made our way to the table, as you can see, I was determined!

It was another story for another day, but there were so many unused stunning antique furnitures that were almost all in bad shape. She had purchased them in the past but somehow they didn't work out, so they were just sitting around in this warehouse collecting dust.

The table didn't pass my "husband test," so it was a definite no!

Finally, at a antique shop I found the perfect table. It was sitting high up on top of another table covered in dust, I could see that it was diamond in the rough. I was excited!

Great color, solid table, six chairs, and wonderful carving details! Love it! I asked the owner to prepare the table and ready for me the pick up. The day I showed up at the store, the two inches thick of dust got cleaned off of the table top, and I discovered a huge patch in the middle of the dining table! It was a very bad repair job and I was absolutely crushed! 

After driving all over creation and found no luck on craiglist, I started wondering why I have not checked my own backyard. Well, not literally, but I live 2 minutes away from one of the biggest antique shopping community in California, why didn't I look THERE? Sure enough, on a casual morning walk, I finally got lucky this time!

I had these sitting in my garage for the past few weeks to wait for workers to clear out, today I moved them into the house, and I love how they turned out!  The table has six chairs and two pull out leaves, so it could either seat 6 or if we have guests we could easily seat 8 people at this table. More than enough for us on a daily basis! I believe these are 1940s furniture style, and I just love that little bit of history and character it adds to my home!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Good eats as of late... my waist line suffers but at least my soul is happy:)

Friday, February 7, 2014

A recap...

Over the past couple of days, the cabinet contractor brought in the newly made cabinets and had them fitted. We salvaged the cabinet doors with old 1920s wavy glass, as you know, I never throw away old glass, all the way down to the tiny brass hardware that came with the doors.
I thought this would be a good time to show case a bit of before and after, albeit the cabinets are not completely finished, it's 95% done.

Before... we took this picture spring of 2011, the day the previous owners cleared out of the house.

Then, on the fateful night of November 21, 2012, we discovered fire smoldering inside our chimney two days after we used the fireplace... you can find the story here.

 Those are THREE fire trucks parked in front of our house,  and firemen were plastered all over my house...

It then took us nearly a whole year to muddle through an ocean of insurance bureaucratic procedures to finally begin construction...

During... I will spare the rebuilt of our fireplace as I have posted plenty here!

And, after! As you can see, the baseboard and door knobs are still not installed yet, but everything else is done! That beat up cabinet is our old fireplace cabinet made of solid wood. It is identical to our new ones in design and material. We are not throwing it away, I'm planning to make a built-in bookcase in my pink room, and I will be salvaging these cabinets as my book shelf!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

 A few updates of my gardens, big and small!

This little fairy garden was one of the earlier ones that I made a little over two years ago. You can see my original post here.The tree used to be much leggier, and not so much miniature ivy on the fence. I used to go out in the backyard every single day wishing that the tree would get bigger.

In April of last year, this is how it looked! I always make small changes with accessories, but the tree and main structure stay the same!

And just like clock work, my miniature elm tree has sprung tiny new leaves! Exciting stuff!

In the big garden, my winter vegetables are thriving! This year, my good neighbor helped preparing the garden. He turned the soil thoroughly and suggested that I put in plenty of organic compost, unlike my failed previous attempts, this time it really worked!

I have been eating vegetable and herbs freshly plucked from the backyard. It's indeed very satisfying to grow your own food!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

When my husband and I first moved into the house, we did one round of painting inside the house. We took out some bloody red color in the bay window and painted a mint green accent wall, which is less neon than it seemed in the picture. However, that wooden pannel ceiling just wasn't cutting it for me, as every night I laid in bed, that wood paneled ceiling just seemed to close in on me!  As is common with older homes, our house has rather small sized bedroom, the built in closet and wood ceiling panels were more 80ish or 90ish products. All things that made the room appear even smaller than it already was. 

We decided to remove the wood panels and see where that takes us...

After the wood ceiling panels were removed, certain parts of plaster was damaged, we also discovered old water damage to the plaster.



and yuck!!

A view of our "beautiful" closet!

That sad thing is our old closet door!

Yikes! What have I done??

First thing first, doors are primed and painted white from wood color.

Here's a sneak peek of our old closet door molding. It was soon taken down, framed for two separate set of closet doors!

A real haunted room...

 Needless to say, the old plaster ceiling had to go. So off it went, and oops, I did it again:)

I wanted to have new closet doors installed, hence the notes of measurements on the door jamb. I called it the closet improvement growth chart.

There's a window INSIDE our closet. The closet wall was lined with dark fake wood panel, a blast from the past! The window probably was from back in the day when people didn't use built in closets, so this area was just part of the room. The old push up window mechanism still worked! Very cool! Of course we kept our good old window! The window itself was painted white, and we had molding installed around the window! The plaster inside the closet was completely redone. No more dark wood paneling, no more crumbly plaster, no more dark wood closet drawers, we had those painted white too!

Here's the AFTER picture! 

Another nice picture of all that beauty underneath:) See the light "coming from above?" Yep!

Here's a picture of our original door molding, just for the idea. That ac vent is off center, our contractor dropped a couple of crocodile tears and fixed it for us for free out of the goodness of his heart!

Then, things started happening slowly and surely!

And then, BOOM! We custom ordered two sets of bi-fold mirrored closet doors! After waiting around for months, they finally arrived!

In the meantime, I discovered this old 1920s light from Silver Fox Salvage from LA. It was a fantastic find! I spent three evening cleaning it up!

I started shopping for door knobs!

Here the air vent is finally centered, walls are painted in Benjamin Moore's Nimbus, doors were painted white, and door molding and crown molding painted and installed!

A work in progress...

Inside the closet, everything in white.

We replaced the ugly ceiling fan that we never use with the antique light, complete with Edison light bulbs!

We are trying...

And Voila! All done! The mirrors helped to add an extra dimension to the room, making it appear somewhat bigger, and I chose the Nimbus color because it was a relaxing soft grey that accents the white trims in the room. The ceiling no longer appear to be closing in on me, plus I now have a pretty light to look at! Over all I'm happy with this bedroom make over.


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