My teacher-friend Denise made Blueberry Avocado Muffins for us a few times this year. They are a different kind of muffin but so moist, so dense, so good. I got the recipe from her pinterest board but the original source has a ridiculous number of pictures of the muffins and much too wordy instructions (they are just muffins people).
I made these on what must be our last snow day this year. They are best on the day you make them (nice and crispy-chewy) but still good later (or even frozen for later). This is a one-bowl, no-mixer recipe. As Denise would say, "Holla!".
I've never been a fan of house plants; like they were something from the 70s that just didn't fit in my house or with my neglectful nature. I think I'm changing my mind and it's probably related to my Aldi orchid from last year that rebloomed last week. How did that happen? I tried to give her 3 ice cubes a week but am sure I wasn't perfect. Maybe it's all about location. So now that I'm all "look at me" with my orchid, I've branched out a bit. I snagged a few stems of a jade plant from my sister.
It's not just any jade plant. It's a jade that has been propagated from my Aunt Faye since before I was born. The original plant is such a legend that she has a name. She is Mitzico (and this from a family that doesn't name anything inanimate). My new little stem is tiny. Tea cup tiny. I hope she is as happy here as my orchid.
I realized a few days ago that I had not changed my blog design since 2009. One cute picture of a favorite dish inspired me to make a few small changes. A new banner and bigger space for pictures; easier to do than I remember.
A plank wall. Trendy yes, but also a good cover for an old plaster wall. I kind of used this tutorial. Except I used masonite (the guy at Home Depot cut all of the boards for me for free; for real). And lots of liquid nails. And lots of perseverance. It is not perfect but it gives the room a nice texture and is way better than the chippy plaster wall (still needs some artwork or something).
The sign over the TV is part of a vintage sign from our garage (I know the EV. 5 is Evergreen 5...an old-school phone number). It fit the black and white theme and gave some interest to the back wall.
The monster sectional was a Craig's List buy. We drove to Chicago to pick it up and stopped at Ikea and bought the TV stand (Besta), side table (LACK), bar stools (GLEN) and pillows (Stockholm). The other pillows and the ottomans (outdoor!) are from Target super clearance.
It's not a total guy spot; I can clear out the room for myself when I start watching Downton Abbey.
We live in a house built in 1929. The basement foundation is epic; like a dungeon (you can see a little of the stone wall in the top photo). The TV room has no natural light so I painted everything a light gray and painted one wall bright red. Every time I look at the wall I think "that is the best red I have ever seen". But I didn't start with the best paint.
I bought a Martha Stewart color (from Home Depot) called Maine Lobster. Three coats of paint later, I was back at Home Depot. This time I bought their Behr Premium Plus Ultra Paint and Primer in One. I matched Martha's Maine Lobster to Behr's Firecracker. O.M.G. That paint went on like whipped cream icing. One coat. Done. I'm a color freak and this red is perfectly red; not too blue, not too orange (my photo skills don't really do it justice).
I blogged about the Thomas Edison patent drawings this summer. I put them in black 24x36 frames from Micheal's. On the same day I bought them. You can see how I did it here.
Ok...only one more post about the basement; the plank wall, vintage sign, and source for some of the furniture.
The purpose of this post is not really a DIY for making a galvanized pipe table (although it is based very loosely on these excellent plans). Its purpose is to serve as a warning for the things you may not know and how to avoid the same mistakes I made. As an overview, let me just say that I spent about 4,000 hours in the pipe aisle at Home Depot and made many mistakes (in both design and in my calculations (including a mistake in my Pythagorean Theorem calculation when the design briefly did not have crossing bars (oh, the math teacher shame)).
DO make a very detailed list of parts.
DO wipe all of the parts with a de-greasing cleaner.
DON'T mistake a "coupling" and a "union" for the same thing. A union is VERY important if your design has any closed loops (no matter how strong your teenager is or how hard you hammer and try to close the loop)
DON'T let the pipes get wet (like during an unexpected rain shower when you are at Home Depot again and can't get anyone to cover the table legs or move them into the garage)
DO use a pumber's wrench to take pieces apart.
DO understand that the table will possibly cost more than you expect.
We had a great piece of butcher block leftover from my mother-in-law's apartment and that's what started this DIY. In the end, I've forgotten how hard it was to build and I really love it. It's a perfect perch to watch TV, eat, or mess around on pinterest looking for the next DIY. (And DO try to make your kids drink from a cup with a lid).
When we moved to our house in 1999, our basement had a home theatre in it. It wasn't a deal-maker or anything but we used it. Somehow, the projector was taken down and the room became a dumping spot for furniture and the influx of my mother-in-law's move.
Ross is the one that pushed for turning it back to a TV room...and I'm so glad he did. We cleared out the room, pulled up the nasty carpet, and got to work. The room is nothing like the rest of our house. It's very guy-ish but not in a goofy way (I didn't completely ignore everyone's input but sometimes you just have to say "no freakin' way" and "trust me" and "Ok, but only one red wall" and "really? an 80-inch TV?").
There's furniture, a plank wall, a lovely red paint color, a vintage sign, artwork, and a galvanized pipe bar table to share; plan to squeeze it all into two more posts this week.
I put up a plank wall in our basement this summer (using masonite; long story) and had a stack of scraps at the end of it all. I'm a life-long leftover saver ("Oh, I can use this for something") and sometimes use what I save. The boards I saved are about 6x15 inches; the perfect size for something tall and narrow.
I had some sewing patern girls that need a dose of "modern" and a new stack of scrapbook paper. I gave them each a new, bold skirt.
Chevron, monster dots, and numbers. I painted the boards (one with chalkboard paint), layered them with tissue paper and a vintage transfer. I also smudged on some brown ink to give a little more dimension to the images.
Always looking for validation, I showed it to Ellen. She said something like "that's a cute skirt". Nailed it.
My son was looking for a sewing needle recently. He was like a bear. Like a bear looking for a sewing needle. Everything went flying off the sewing cabinet and he just put it all in a pile. The thing is, it turned out to be a chance to refresh the space. A new pile of books, a new look. Thanks Ross.
I have taken a ridiculous amount of pictures of our dogs and cats with my new camera. They basically hold still and stare straight into the camera (or gaze passively into the distance); making it super easy to practice shots. I got Penny mid-lick on this one.
Ellen turns 13 this week. I have 3 teenagers. Help me.