Monday, February 24

sneak peek

I hinted about this last year, and it is finally almost done.  The kitchen makeover.   Here is the before:

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Yes, those are four different finishes/colors.  Kind of tragic, no?  I cannot even bear to show you the whole thing.   I was the definitely the owner of the darkest, ugliest kitchen in town. (It’s hard to tell from these photos, but this is the sunniest time of day, with all the lights on.) Seriously.  I would watch House Hunters on TV and be talking at the women who were complaining about the kitchens, saying I would kill for that kitchen.  Mine was largely faux.  Faux everything.  Faux wood everywhere except for the doors, and some of the trim.  Yes, some.  It was a hodgepodge.   Not to mention seven layers of linoleum and vinyl and the faux brass pseudo-Bavarian door handles. 

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The only reason we didn’t replace it sooner is because it was pretty new when we bought the house, having been used for less than a year.  We spent so much renovating the rest of the house, and were just so ready to move in, we lived with it.  And hated it.

And then, one day, my husband surprised me with the news that I didn’t have to wait anymore.  My brand new kitchen was coming.

Goodbye, dark ugly faux.  Goodbye, broken door.  I’d like to tell you I miss you, but I don’t!  

Hello, solid wood!  Hello pretty happy white!  Sigh … my heart goes pitter pat for you!  (please excuse the poor phone photos.)  There really is no substitute for solid wood.  They look a lot better than in these photos and the room is so much brighter now. 

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We went with all white, except for the floors, which are tile that looks like wood.  It isn’t grouted here, but you get the idea, I think.  (They’re pretty dusty, but I literally snapped this over the heads of the contractors while they were working.)   The picture on the right is the same corner as the first photo.  AND these were taken just before sunset, with no lights on. 

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We’re waiting for countertops, and then we can do the backsplash and all of the trim.  I can’t wait!

This reno seemed endless, and we found about 100 problems behind the walls (no insulation, cut beams, missing headers, holes in the floor … it was nuts!), but it’s coming back together the right way.  

I will post some more soon.

Have a great week!

Best,

Stephanie

Tuesday, February 18

presidents day

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What better way to mark Presidents Day ( a day late! I tried to schedule in advance and it didn’t post!) than with a few of my favorite DC shots?  I’ve covered Lincoln, Washington and Jefferson here – some of our country’s finest!  Wishing for peace and prosperity for this great nation of ours! 

Best,
Stephanie

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Friday, February 14

happy valentines day!

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“A loving heart is the truest wisdom.” - Charles Dickens

Happy Valentines Day to you all!  I hope each of your days is full of love today, and everyday.

Best,

Stephanie

Tuesday, February 11

nothing to see here …

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… just a completely unedited photo snapped through my window when I was supposed to be working.  The light was pretty warm, for winter, and I thought the ice on the branches looked pretty in the sun.  (and now I just hope that blogger doesn’t mess it up!) 

It’s been an unbelievable winter all over the place, I think.  But few places have been hit as hard with the snow as the east coast.  Now, with another 6-10 inches of snow projected for Thursday, I’m beginning to think we won’t see spring for a while.   We already have a few feet on the ground that isn’t melting, so I’m a little nervous as to what will happen when it all starts to melt. 

How is the weather where you are?  Anyone living where it’s warm want to put up a nice, winter-weary family for a few days?  Stay warm and safe, my friends! 

Best,

Stephanie

Wednesday, February 5

one more time …

OK, I’m giving the old blogger another shot.  I’m posting two photos I’ve used before, and seeing what happens with some technical adjustments.  Be honest, OK? 

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These camellias are one of the highlights of February for me.  I will be going to Planting Fields soon to see this year’s stunning display.  Their Camellia Greenhouse is one of my favorite places to spend a cold winter’s day.

Thanks for bearing with me as I figure this thing out!

Best,
Stephanie

Monday, February 3

photographs …

I’m a little unhappy with the way my photographs appear on blogger lately.  They randomly compress the photos in a way that compromises the quality.  They can be darker, grainer, or just different, and I don’t like it.  Some of them come out OK, but few look as good as they do before they’re uploaded.  After looking into it, I turned off the auto-enhance, but it hasn’t seemed to help the problem too much.  For example, the photo from the last post was so bright and sharp on my screen that my daughter thought it was a professional photo from an ad.   Then I post it, and, well, not so much.  I want to post pretty things, and I want the photos to be as I took them.

Any ideas?  

One thing I was thinking of was moving to another site.  I’ve checked a few out, and I would have to change the blog name, though that isn’t the biggest deal.   What do you use, and are you happy with them? 

And just a peek outside my windows right now … some photos below   

Best,
Stephanie

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Monday, January 27

triple threat…

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For the most part, I’ve been a good girl and switched to sulfate free shampoos, even though I miss my old favorite, and that rich, yummy lather.  But once in a while, I treat myself to this oldie but goodie.   What makes it a triple threat? 

One – it smells delicious when you wash your hair – exactly like the Bulgari Green Tea perfume.

Two – the scent stays in your hair.  Not enough to overpower your perfume, but just enough for a subtle pick me up when your hair moves.

Three – when you wet your hair to wash it again (or go for a swim, etc.), you smell it all over again. 

It isn’t inexpensive, but it is a nice once in a while treat.   I can pretty much guarantee that people close to you will be asking, “Mmmm … what smells so good?” 

Try it, you’ll like it. 

Best,

Stephanie